The Contingent Self
So far we have considered Rāmānuja’s position on the ātman as knower (jῆātr) in terms of its being intrinsically conscious. We have not gone into the question of the self as knower in relation to its prakrtic embodiment. In this chapter we shall be concerned with this question together with Rāmānuja’s view on the other two main Vedāntic descriptions of the self in its empirical conditon: as kartr (‘doer’) and as bhoktr (‘enjoyer/ sufferer’, i.e. the ‘experiencing’ self). In other words, we shall be concerned with Rāmānuja’s concept of personal agency with special reference to the samsāric state. In the discussion it will generally be more convenient to use the Sanskrit terms, jῆātr, kartr and bhoktr, instead of possible English equivalents.
KeywordsPersonal Identity Conscious Experience Proper Form Empirical Characteristic Moral Evil
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