The conscious subject persists in deep sleep.
We now come to the question as to the nature of deep sleep. In deep sleep the quality of darkness prevails in the mind and there is no consciousness of outward things, and thus there is no distinct and clear presentation of the 'I'; but all the same the Self somehow presents itself up to the time of waking in the one form of the 'I,' and the latter cannot therefore be said to be absent. Pure consciousness assumed by you (to manifest itself in deep sleep) is really in no better case; for a person risen from deep sleep. never represents to himself his state of consciousness during
sleep in the form, 'I was pure consciousness free from all egoity and opposed in nature to everything else, witnessing Nescience'; what he thinks is only 'I slept well.' From this form of reflection it appears that even during sleep the Self. i.e. the 'I,' was a knowing subject and perceptive of pleasure. Nor must you urge against this that the reflection has the following form: 'As now I feel pleasure, so I slept then also'; for the reflection is distinctly not of that kind. 1 Nor must you say that owing to the non-permanency of the 'I' its perception of pleasure during sleep cannot connect itself with the waking state. For (the 'I' is permanent as appears from the fact that) the person who has risen from sleep recalls things of which he was conscious before his sleep, 'I did such and such a thing,' 'I observed this or that,' 'I said so or so.'--But, you will perhaps say, he also reflects, 'For such and such a time I was conscious of nothing!'--'And what does this imply?' we ask.--'It implies a negation of everything!'--By no means, we rejoin. The words 'I was conscious' show that the knowing 'I' persisted, and that hence what is negated is only the objects of knowledge. If the negation implied in 'of nothing' included everything, it would also negative the pure consciousness which you hold to persist in deep sleep. In the judgment 'I was conscious of nothing,' the word 'I' clearly refers to the 'I,' i.e. the knowing Self which persists even during deep sleep, while the words 'was conscious of nothing' negative all knowledge on the part of that 'I'; if, now, in the face of this, you undertake to prove by means of this very judgment that knowledge--which is expressly denied--existed at the time, and that the persisting knowing Self did not exist, you may address your proof to the patient gods who give no reply!--But--our opponent goes on to urge--I form the following judgment also: 'I then was not conscious of myself,' and from this I understand that the 'I' did not persist during deep sleep!--You do not know, we rejoin, that this denial of the persistence
of the 'I' flatly contradicts the state of consciousness expressed in the judgment 'I was not conscious of myself' and the verbal form of the judgment itself!--But what then is denied by the words 'of myself?--This, we admit, is a reasonable question. Let us consider the point. What is negatived in that judgment is not the knowing 'I' itself, but merely the distinctions of caste, condition of life, &c. which belong to the 'I' at the time of waking. We must distinguish the objects of the several parts of the judgment under discussion. The object of the '(me) myself' is the 'I' distinguished by class characteristics as it presents itself in the waking state; the object of the word 'I' (in the judgment) is that 'I' which consists of a uniform flow of self-consciousness which persists in sleep also, but is then not quite distinct. The judgment 'I did not know myself' therefore means that the sleeper was not conscious of the place where he slept, of his special characteristics, and so on.--It is, moreover, your own view that in deep sleep the Self occupies the position of a witnessing principle with regard to Nescience. But by a witness (sâkshin) we understand some one who knows about something by personal observation (sâkshât); a person who does not know cannot be a witness. Accordingly, in scripture as well as in ordinary language a knowing subject only, not mere knowledge, is spoken of as a witness; and with this the Reverend Pânini also agrees when teaching that the word 'sâkshin' means one who knows in person (Pâ. Sû. V, 2, 91). Now this witness is nothing else but the 'I' which is apprehended in the judgment 'I know '; and how then should this 'I' not be apprehended in the state of sleep? That which itself appears to the Self appears as the 'I,' and it thus follows that also in deep sleep and similar states the Self which then shines forth appears as the 'I.'