The Concept of Direct Perception in Ayurveda
Direct perception can be regarded the sole reliable method of gaining knowledge from the environment. Though “seeing an item” is commonly associated with the word “direct perception,” it actually encompasses the process of obtaining knowledge through hearing, smelling, touching, and tasting through sense organs other than the eyes, such as the ears, nose, skin, and tongue. The five sense organs provide an individual with knowledge of the world around them. However, actual experience shows that, even if an object exists, it may not be able to be shown through direct perception due to a variety of reasons. A material can’t be seen if it’s too little or too big, a sound can’t be heard if it’s too low, a smell can’t be detected if it’s coming from afar, a substance can’t be touched if it’s being pressed with another substance, and a taste can’t be taken if the sample can’t be obtained. Interestingly, Charaka, the originator of Indian medicine, discussed the difficulties of direct perception under the name “PRATYAKSHYANUPALABDHI,” demonstrating the ancient scholars’ depth of knowledge and observation.
Dr. Dilip Kumar Goswami
Department of Agada Tantra and Vidhi Ayurveda, Govt. Ayurvedic College, India.
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