What is a Dimension?

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There are various definitions of the word dimension. Depending on which we want to talk about, the meaning changes a lot.

For example in Caitanya Caritamrita Adi-lila 2.53 Srila Prabhupada describes three entities, which are virat (material energy), hiranyagarbha (the origin of souls) and karana (causal nature) and he calls the fourth “turiya”, or the spiritual world, the fourth dimension.

We therefore see that here Srila Prabhupada is not speaking of dimension as something physical, that is, that describes creation, but is giving a definition of a philosophical concept. Since the material universe is based on three dimensions of measurement, the fourth (turiya) must be the spiritual world.

 

Now let’s see the physical definition of the word dimension.

A dimension is an aspect of reality, which can be multidimensional. This word is also used to describe the possible measurements of the existing one.

Someone calls the three measures “dimensions”, which are length, height and depth, the three coordinates of a diagram called x, y and z.

Einstein has hypothesized the presence of a fourth physical measure (which in order not to go against our definition we will not call dimension) which is space. Thus the coordinates would become x, y, z, t. In the case that the theory of relativity was right, time would be a physical element because it could be manipulated and therefore the material universe would have a fourth measure (or fourth dimension).

If not, then it cannot be and our reality would have only three physical coordinates, length, height and depth and time would be a feature of our dimension and not a measure.

 

Srila Prabhupada rejects the idea that there is only the dimension in which we live and that we can perceive.

“Indian reporter (4): You see Him (Krishna) in three dimensions?

Prabhupada: Unlimited dimension. Three dimensions for you because You cannot see Him. Otherwise He is unlimited. That’s it. But you cannot see unlimited. That is His mercy, that He presents Himself before you in three dimensions because you have no eyes to see Him in His unlimited dimensions. That is not possible. So it is His mercy. But He is not limited with three dimensions.”[1]

Here Srila Prabhupada is clear. He is saying that creation, both spiritual and material, is multidimensional.

In fact this universe was created on a multi-dimensional basis and this explains why Sukadeva Gosvami in the Fifth Canto of the Srimad-Bhagavatam describes a universe that we do not see, which is not even conceivable, beyond our comprehension and which confuses anyone who tries harmonizing Sukadeva Gosvami’s claims with human observation.

 

Sukadeva Gosvami speaks of “mandala”, of flat surface, and not of planets. But we see planets, spheres that float in space. The reason is that we are unable to access the dimension that Sukadeva Gosvami saw. He was describing our own universe but in another dimension.

And so we see the nearby Moon (and it is near, while in the other dimension it is further away), we see nothing in other planets like Mars, Venus or Jupiter (while he saw inhabitants, cities, forests, rivers, oceans) and so on. Going to the moon or to Mars is of no use because the alternative reality, present in a different dimension, remains hidden to our senses.

But it is not a theme that we can complete in a short article. We will come back to talking about it in the future.

Since I recognize that it is a somewhat difficult subject, anyone who needs clarification can ask me.

 

Question

Jay Thank you Guru Maharaja, I wanted to ask you; How many dimensions in total do the Vedas say exist? On the other hand, I thought that in another dimension it’s the same planet but with another different content, does the size of the planet or moon vary in another dimension?

 

Answer

We have no information of how many dimensions exist but both Srila Prabhupada (“unlimited dimension”) and logic say that they cannot be counted.

About size, there is no doubt that in other dimensions sizes are different. We read in the Puranas, even in Srimad-Bhagavatam, of mountains thousands of miles high and oceans hundreds of thousands of miles wide. Even though the planet Earth was bigger in other yugas, these sizes can’t be accommodated here.

 

About contents, this is also correct. There are things that can’t be perceived in this dimension. You may remember that just a few days ago in Santo Domingo I mentioned the two inauspicious planets Rahu and Ketu which, although quite big and not so far from us, we can’t see. There are innumerable examples that could be made.

[1] Press Conference December 16, 1976, Hyderabad. India

 

This is a section of the book “Brilliant as the Sun”.

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