The cognition of the living beings has three divisions:
- direct knowledge
- indirect knowledge
- perverted knowledge
Sense perception of material objects by the mundane senses, such as the eye, ear, nose and hand, always produces definitely perverted knowledge. This illusion is a presentation of the material energy, which is influenced by the samvit-shakti in a perverted manner.
Negative cognition of an object beyond the reach of sense perception is the way of indirect knowledge, which is not altogether imperfect but which produces only fragmentary knowledge in the form of impersonal spiritual realization and monism.
But when the samvit factor of cognition is enlightened by the hladini potency of the same internal energy, they work together, and only thus can one attain knowledge of the Personality of Godhead. The samvit-shakti should be maintained in that state. Material knowledge and indirect spiritual knowledge are by-products of the samvit-shakti.
– Chaitanya-charitamrita, Adi 4.67 Purport