I am reading God Talks With Arjuna by Sri Sri Paramahansa Yogananda. In chapter 2 verse 20, I came across the following line in the interpretation:

This stanza expresses the profound truth of the immortal nature not only of the soul but of matter.

Is it not the stance of the Bhagawad Gita (and consequently the Vedas) that matter exists only because we perceive them so? Which means that matters do not exists without being perceived. So if the permanence of matter is asserted, shouldn't it imply the permanence of consciousness in the material world which perceives it? Which implies permanence of earthly life. Is there a glitch in my argument?

  • Welcome to the Philosophy SE. While the question does have some philosophical content, it seems more appropriate to the Hinduism SE, we're you're more likely to find people with knowledge of the Gita and the Vedas. – Alexander S King Mar 10 '16 at 23:30
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    If you specifically want an answer within the academic discipline of philosophy, it's not automatically off-topic, but if you're wanting an interpretation in light with Hindu philosophy Hinduism.SE would be better. – virmaior Mar 11 '16 at 8:51
  • @AlexanderSKing please see meta.philosophy.stackexchange.com/q/3136/2953. – user2953 Mar 25 '16 at 9:00

As far as I understand the whole passage chapter 2, 19ff. speaks about Atman, not about matter. E.g. see the parallel between Katha Upanishad 2,19 and Gita 2,19.

The Gita says:

How can a person who properly understands this [Atman] as indestructible, eternal, unborn, and without decay cause the death of anyone or kill anyone? (2, 21)

On the other hand, the following passage is generally interpreted as speaking about the dead of the body, a kind of matter:

This eternal embodied soul is indestructible and beyond comprehension. The bodies it inhabits, however, are said to be finite. [...] (2,18)

In which passage of the Gita do you read that matter does not exist without being perceived?

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