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कृण्वन्तो विश्वमार्यम्

Vedant : A point to ponder

When the report was being assiduously spread by the enemies of reform that Swami Dayananda Saraswati (1824-1883) had refused to hold a debate, some Sadhus elated by the report hastened to the Swami’s quarters and coming into his presence said that they had sought him out with the view of holding a discussion with him. The Swami who weakened by dysentery was laying down, sat up and replied that he was ready. “Vedantism,” was the reply of the leader of the band, a man of learning.

Swami: “To begin with, please explain what do you mean by Vedantism?”

Sadhu: “Vedantism is that which teaches that the world (jagata) is false, and that God (Brahman) is the only true existence.”

Swami: “What do you understand by the ‘world’ (jagata)? What things are included in your ‘world’ and what do you mean by the term ‘false’ (mithya)?”

Sadhu: ”Whatever there is from atoms up to the sun is called the ‘world’ and all that is in it is false and unreal.”

Swami: ”Are or are not your body, speech, moving about, updesh (preaching), guru, and books included in this world also?

Sadhu: “Yes they are.”

Swami: “And is your philosophy of Vedant also included in this, or is that outside of it?”

Sadhu: “Verily, that too is included in this.”

Swami: “When you yourself admit that you and your guru, your philosophy and your books, your speech and your updesh are false, what can I say to you? The case, according to the statement of the claimant himself deserves to be dismissed. There is no need of witnesses here.”