Subtle-knowledge and the associated terms
That which is beyond the comprehension of the five sense organs, mind and intellect is known as the ‘subtle dimension’; whereas, knowledge that is obtained without the use of five sense organs, mind and intellect is known as ‘subtle-knowledge’
In the Shrimadbhagawat, (Skandha 5, Adhyaya 26, Sutra 38) it is said that the nirgun (Non-materialised) form of God described in the Upanishads is beyond the comprehension of the mind and intellect. Yet, the intellect of one who reads about or hears or narrates the physical form of God becomes pure due to his faith and devotion, and he obtains the knowledge of God’s subtle form or he gets some spiritual experience associated with God’s subtle form. To summarize, faith and devotion of those who perform spiritual practice keeps increasing, and as a result, they too obtain knowledge about the subtle form or get spiritual experiences associated with the subtle dimension.
Finding the process of developing the ability to comprehend the subtle dimension
Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale has been studying the subtle dimension since 1982. He developed the ability to comprehend the subtle dimension on 15.7.1982, meaning, He developed it before commencing spiritual practice. In the initial stages, He would get answers in the form of a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’. Once He commenced spiritual practice, He began to understand the cause-effect relationship of these answers. He taught seekers (who had an activated sixth sense) various aspects of subtle knowledge such as obtaining subtle knowledge, subtle-analysis, drawing subtle-pictures etc. As a result, many seekers of Sanatan Sanstha today have the ability to comprehend the subtle dimension.
Given ahead is the stepwise process implemented by Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale to develop the seekers’ ability to comprehend the subtle dimension.
1. Studying what do we perceive upon looking at an object
Spirituality is a practical science. Hence, Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale used to take experiments in the study sessions on Spirituality he conducted in 1991. For example, He would show the attendees pictures of Shri Ganapati with His trunk curved towards the right and left, two objects, two seekers etc. and ask them what they perceived upon looking at each pair. He would then analyze their answers. During such experiments, one has to look at one picture, object or individual at one time. Since these experiments were associated with subtle knowledge, the seekers in the preliminary stages of spiritual practice began to study the ability to comprehend the subtle dimension.
2. Studying what do we perceive at the subtle level upon looking at an object wrapped in paper and upon holding the object
As the attendees in the study session on Spirituality started progressing, Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale would hold two different objects wrapped in paper and ask the attendees what they perceived upon looking at them; then He would ask them what they perceived upon holding those wrapped objects in their hand. Thereafter, He would unwrap the objects. Knowing the subtle vibrations of an object by merely looking at them is subtler than perceiving something by holding them. He would conduct these experiments to teach the attendees that Spirituality is a science beyond the comprehension of the mind and intellect. Through these experiments, He would teach how to comprehend the subtle dimension without using the mind and intellect. He would also explain the underlying science – ‘When we stop using our mind and intellect, we obtain knowledge from the Universal mind and Universal intellect’.
3. Observing what is perceived at the subtle level on different occasions
Later, Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale began to ask the seekers who wanted to develop their subtle perception ability to make subtle observations of religious rituals, spiritual remedies, abiding by Achardharma. Thus, He further developed the subtle perception ability of these seekers.
4. Subtle observation of incidents that transcend time
As the seekers began to progress spiritually, by Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale’s grace, they began to comprehend incidents that transcend time.
– Mr Vivek Pendse and Mr Prakash Joshi, Ponda, Goa. (19.4.2016) (B 1 to B 4)
Teaching seekers to obtain subtle knowledge that is Apourusheya (One that has not originated from man)
The knowledge in the Vedas is Apourusheya; for, it has not been narrated by any individual, rather it has been obtained by the Sages and Ascetics. (This is the reason why they are called Seers of the Vedas). From 1984, I began to get answers in the meditative state to a whole lot of questions pertaining to Spirituality. This knowledge from the subtle dimension was Apourusheya in nature; for, it was not available in any Holy text available on earth. Since then, the knowledge obtained from the subtle dimension became an integral part of everything I wrote besides the knowledge obtained through the intellect. In the first Holy text ‘Science of Spirituality’ published on 20.3.1987 (that was cyclostyled), a lot of such knowledge has been included.
1. Teaching seekers to obtain answers from the Universal mind and Universal intellect, meaning, obtaining subtle knowledge
‘All the knowledge in the Vedas is present in the Universal mind and Universal intellect and hence, this knowledge is called ‘Divine knowledge’. This knowledge can be obtained by seekers as per the Path of Yoga they follow, meaning, a seeker following Dhyan-yog (Path of meditation) obtains it in meditative state, a seeker following Dnyan-yog (Path of knowledge) obtains it through the awakening of his talents, a seeker following Bhakti-yog (Path of devotion) obtains it from God and a seeker who progresses spiritually following some other Path obtains it by virtue of his being one with the Universal mind and Universal intellect. Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale has taught the seekers to obtain answers from the Universal mind and Universal intellect, meaning, obtain subtle knowledge.’ – Mr Chetan Rajhans, Sanatan Ashram, Ramnathi, Goa. (13.4.2017)
2. Telling seekers that spiritual curiosity is essential for obtaining knowledge
Knowledge is infinite. Hence, only when we have the virtue of spiritual curiosity we get to know the various aspects of knowledge. If spiritual curiosity is lacking, learning attitude is missing, then the flow of knowledge stops. Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale imprinted upon seekers the principle taught by H.H. Bhaktaraj Maharaj that ‘The spiritually curious are truly deserving of knowledge’[a1] . Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale is at the highest spiritual level and yet because of His spiritual curiosity, He obtains knowledge through the medium of seekers, and based on this knowledge hundreds of Sanatan’s Holy texts are being published.’ – H.H. (Dr) Mukul Gadgil, Maharshi Adhyatma Vishwavidyalay, Goa (13.4.2017)
3. Verifying the knowledge obtained by seekers
Owing to the distress due to negative energies and the spiritual level of some seekers who obtain subtle knowledge, there is variation (increase/decrease) in their union with the Universal mind and Universal intellect. Besides, negative energies also impart incorrect knowledge. Therefore, accuracy from the spiritual perspective has to be ascertained.’ – Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale (15.3.2017)
4. Explaining the importance of reducing the ego for accuracy of the knowledge to be high
When the ego in a seeker is high, he is unable to merge with the Universal mind and Universal intellect. As a result, there are obstacles in the path of obtaining knowledge. When the ego is high, the negative energies can cause distress to the seeker and interfere with the knowledge the seeker obtains, and provide incorrect information. Hence, lesser the awareness of ‘I’ness among the seekers, more the awareness of gratitude and more the attitude of surrender, more the accuracy of knowledge. This was explained to the seekers by Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale, and accordingly He also helped seekers reduce their ego.’ – H.H. (Dr) Mukul Gadgil, Maharshi Adhyatma Vishwavidyalay, Goa. (13.4.2017)
5. Seekers obtaining knowledge
Since 2003, Sadguru (Mrs) Anjali Gadgil and Mr Ram Honap, and since 2005, H.H. (Dr) Charudatta Pingale, Ms Madura Bhosale and Mr Nishad Deshmukh have been obtaining knowledge. There are another 15-20 seekers who obtain knowledge. The knowledge obtained by all these seekers has been included in Sanatan’s Holy texts. (13C to 13C 5)
Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale teaching the seekers how to draw pictures based on subtle knowledge
‘Creatures, animals, birds, human beings and Deities have their own language. Likewise, there is a language that sketches have in art. Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale taught some artist-seekers (who have an awakened subtle sense of vision) how true the language of sketches is as per Spirituality. If the spiritually evolved, whose spiritual level is above 90% and the ability of their subtle sense of vision is good and if they are willing, only then they can understand this language; however, Sanatan’s artist-seekers at a 50% spiritual level have also drawn pictures based on subtle knowledge. Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale has guided artist-seekers from time to time and introduced the art section and the field of Spirituality to the subtle world. The artist-seekers have drawn some pictures with an individual or an object in front of them, some have been drawn by looking at the pictures of videos, while some have been drawn without looking at anything. Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale ensured that the artist-seekers progress spiritually while drawing the subtle-pictures. Pictures are associated with the Tej-tattva (Absolute Fire Element), whereas knowledge is associated with the Akash-tattva (Absolute Air Element). Pictures are drawn for easy understanding of a subject; however, it may not be possible to draw a picture of everything. Therefore, to make these aspects clear, subtle knowledge is essential. Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale taught the seekers how to draw pictures based on subtle knowledge, the stages in the subtle-picture to subtle knowledge.
Incomparable Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale, who measures the spiritual level of an individual using subtle knowledge
To measure the high as well as low levels in spiritual practice, Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale follows this concept – ‘A lifeless form is 0% and God is 100%’. As a result, it becomes easy to measure the spiritual level of an individual. In the world of Spirituality, Paratpar Guru (Dr) Athavale is the first to notify an individual’s spiritual level in this manner.