Take knowing, for example. While we may see the difference between the type of knowledge gained from books and the knowledge gained from experience, the Jainists describe eight (yes, eight) types of knowledge. Here they are:
- Mental knowledge, which is gained from sensory experience and then analyzed, remembered, or felt emotionally;
- Verbal and non-verbal knowledge, which is usually acquired from hearing or study; it is dependent upon signs, symbols, and words;
- Knowledge gained from higher faculties such as clairvoyance, clairsentience (that's us, fellow empaths!), and mystical insight;
- Knowledge gained from higher faculties such as telepathy and mind reading, in which one comes to know what another person is thinking;
- Ultimate knowledge, which is omniscient, omnipresent, limitless and transcendent, and is only obtained when one reaches Nirvana.
- The remaining three are considered wrong types of knowledge: erroneous knowledge, invalid knowledge, and wrong knowledge. We'll not dwell on these.