On Tattva-vibhrama, mistakes on spiritual knowledge (from Bhajana Rahasya by Bhaktivinode Thakura)


[23:29, 5/11/2019] Paramesvari New: Y en el Anuvritti viene este texto y si usted pudiera ser tan amable de profundizar le agradecería mucho ys paramesvari dd

[23:29, 5/11/2019] Paramesvari New:

Thakura Bhaktivinoda in his Bhajana-rahasya describes four types of anarthas and four categories within each type. The four types of anarthas are:

1) tattva-vibhrama – illusion about spiritual knowledge
2) hrdaya-daurbalya – weakness of heart
3) aparadha – offenses
4) asat-trsna – material desires

Illusion about spiritual knowledge is of four types:
1) sva-tattva bhrama – illusion about one’s original position as a tatastha-jiva
2) para-tattva bhrama – illusion about nature of the Supreme Lord
3) sadhya-sadhana bhrama – illusion about the processes of sadhana and prema-bhakti
4) virodhi-visaya bhrama – illusion regarding subjects unfavorable to Krsna consciousness

Weakness of heart is of four types:
1) tucchasakti – attachment to objects not related to Krsna
2) kutinati – deceitfulness
3) matsaryam – enviousness
4) pratistha – desire for fame

Offenses are of four types:
1) krsna-svarupa-aparadha – offenses towards the form of the Lord
2) nama-aparadha – offenses towards the Holy Name of the Lord
3) krsna-tadiya-aparadha – offenses to the devotees
4) jiva-aparadha – offenses to other living entities

Material desires are of four types:
1) aihikesvaisana – desire for material objects
2) para-trikesu – desire for heavenly comforts
3) bhuti-vancha – desire for mystic powers
4) mumuksa – desire for liberation

[23:30, 5/11/2019] Paramesvari New: Qué es exactamente ilusión acerca del conocimiento?
[23:31, 5/11/2019] Paramesvari New: Ilusión acerca de nuestra posición original
[23:31, 5/11/2019] Paramesvari New: Ys paramesvari dd

Perdón las 4 tipos de ilusión de conocimiento espiritual 🙏🙏🙏 no me queda claro



Dear Mataji Paramesvari,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada.

I am not sure if you are asking me to speak only on tattva-vibhrama or on all of various types of anarthas.
If the latter, please tell me and I’ll answer on installments, since these are all large topics and well would deserve the space of a book.


Let’s begin with the meaning of anartha.
The word “artha” means “object of desire”, or “true sense”. The prefix “a” is a negation, that becomes “an” as an effect of the sanskrit grammatical rules called sandhi.
Therefore anartha are those thing that we don’t want or that we shouldn’t want.
If we are interested in spiritual advancement, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura advices us to understand and avoid four types of mistakes.


The first is called tattva-vibhrama, translated here as illusion about spiritual knowledge.
I find translating the word “vibhrama” as “illusion” unclear and misleading. It’s not wrong, it’s just unsatisfactory.
Vibhrama means misgiving, error, mistake due to a “bee-like” intellectual propensity. Literally a bhramara is a bee. If you observe a bee, it goes here and there without a plan, a discipline. Therefore those who do not accept the guidance of Sastra, Guru and bonafide Sadhus will get bewildered and will madly go here and there because of so many confusing ideas.
So tattva-vibhrama means “mistakes on spiritual truth.”

In the Bhajana-rahasya, Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura says:
sva-tattve para-tattve ca
virodhi-visaye caiva
tattva-bhramas catur vidhah (8)

“Ci sono quattro tipi di errori on spiritual knowledge, and they are:
1) Sva-tattva, on truth about his own self (Note: “as a tatastha-sakti” is an addition of the author of the anuvritti you are mentioning. Bhaktivinoda Thakura just says “sva-tattva”),
2) Para-tattva, on truth about the Supreme,
3) sadhya-sadhana, on the goal of devotional service in practice,
4) virodhi-visaya, on obstructing elements.


Let’s briefly see them one by one.


If you think to be the material body or mind, this is a tattva-bhrama, an untruth and a practical mistake that will change the whole of your life.
You are a spiritual soul, eternal, with full knowledge and bliss. This is sva-tattva, the correct truth about atma, the self. Setting your life on this basis will eventually give you perfection.


Thinking that the Supreme doesn’t exist or that it is a blinding light, or a demigod, it’s a tattva-bhrama, it’s wrong.
Knowing that para-tattva is Sri Krishna Bhagavan, it is tattva, true. This is a fact supported by the highest authorities.


Thinking that the ultimate goal (sadhya) of a spiritual discipline (sadhana) is to go to the upper planets for sense enjoyment, or having mystical powers, or getting liberation in the Brahmajyoti, is a tattva-bhrama, a mistake.
The goal is to develop love (prema) through service (bhakti) for Radha Krishna.


A virodhi is a disturbing or opposing element, while visaya is the receiver. Therefore (for example) not following the rules and regulations laid down by Acarya (virodhi), therefore not receiving the positive result, is a tattva-bhrama, a mistake.
If one is serious about Bhakti will follow all rules and regulation, and surely and safely go back to Godhead.



Your servant
Manonatha Dasa (ACBSP)

THE NEW ARCHIVE: www.isvara.org

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