“Seeing is believing” drags humans to the animal level
The Bhagavad-gita (15.10) reproaches as deluded (vimudha) those materialists who are blind to the soul due to their overdependence on their undependable senses. “Seeing is believing” is the credo that such people use self-righteously to justify their disbelief in everything invisible. Sadly, their credo drags them down to the bestial level both intellectually and practically.
Intellectually: “Seeing is believing” is a permanent progress stopper. Our advanced human intelligence enables us to infer underlying invisible principlesfrom visible phenomena. Without such inference, we can gain no deep understanding of the world – neither scientific nor philosophical.As this dogmacensors everything invisible, it reduces our human intelligence to nought and condemns us to the same epistemological boat as animals.
Practically: “Seeing is believing” drags humans down to animalistic indulgences. An animal wandering in a desert believes in the mirage that it sees and chases after the non-existent water, thereby condemning itself to perpetual thirst and eventual death. Similarly, dogmatic materialists refuse to believe in the spiritual because of its invisibility and so deprive themselves of spiritual happiness. Consequently, they chase after the only pleasures that remain available to them: material pleasures. As we are spiritual beings, material pleasures can never give us real happiness, so Gita wisdom compares such pleasures with mirages. By chasing futilely after those mirage-like pleasures, they condemn themselves to insatiable craving and repeated births and deaths in material existence.
Thus, it is apt that the Gita addresses the devotees of “seeing is believing” by the word vimudha that invokes the image of a special ass (vi – special; mudha – ass) and conveys the idea of a human being behaving in an asinine way.
“The foolish cannot understand how a living entity can quit his body, nor can they understand what sort of body he enjoys under the spell of the modes of nature. But one whose eyes are trained in knowledge can see all this.”