Vedas: Vedic Epistemology

                                                                  Q. When I read articles on present day scientists saying there is life on Mars or human beings trying to land on moon, how do I relate that to material worlds described in Vedas?

                                                                  Q. I'd like to know something about Vedic knowledge: specifically about categories of Sabda, Pratyaksha and Anumana. Can you tell me what do they mean?

                                                                  Srila Prabhupada explains these three methods of acquiring knowledge in his Sri Isopanishad, Introduction:

                                                                  Q. I've read information on Michael Cremo's web site (Drutakarma Prabhu) where he calculates earth age based on SB Canto 3-Chapter 11. His estimation is about 2 billion years. Today, the scientifically studied data reveals an age of 4 billion or so. How should we approach the difference when challenged (other then the limited vision prone to make mistakes example)?

                                                                  I presented this question to Drutakarma Prabhu directly, who replied as follows:

                                                                  Q. Unless I try it how will I even know if something is really what I want or not? How can one know something without first trying it?

                                                                  Regarding how can one know something without first trying it, the Vedic process is based on hearing, more than experience and experiment. Simply by hearing from a fully realized teacher, we can understand everything as it is, without having to personally experience. "acaryavan purusho veda" -- one who has a bona fide spiritual master becomes the knower of everything. Experience-based learning is considered a less effective and less efficient process, although experience may be reinforcing when it is guided by hearing.

                                                                  Q. 1. How can you know for sure that there really is life after death, instead of the other belief that we are just mechanistic organisms that live and then die and then are nothing?