Wednesday, 12 September 2012


A.Death is nothing but the separation of the subtle body from the gross body. The subtle body, consisting of the flow of thoughts constituting mind, intellect, ego and memory, gathers all its faculties – the faculties of senses, etc - and moves to different fields of experiences (lokas). It takes a new gross body by entering into the womb of a mother which we call ‘birth’. Birth and death are therefore the association and disassociation of the subtle body with a gross body. In the gross body, the consciousness reflects as existence – as ‘the body is’. In the subtle body, the consciousness is reflected as a being with notions of ‘I am this’.

B.If the truth cannot be known by any means, since all means are finite, then it must be a self-revealing and self-existing entity.Not only the truth is the pathless land, as Krishnamurthi declared, Vedanta goes one step further to indicate that the self-existent, self-conscious and infinite entity is nothing but your own self, where the seeker and the sought, or the subject and the object, merge into one infinite-existent-conscious entity.
If one examines one's mind carefully we find that our wanting mind is not happy in having what it wanted, since 'the want to have more' always remains, however much one has. Thus it rather wants to want than wants to have. That is the reflection of the conditioned state of mind.

C.The mind wants to be free from wanting and that desire for eternal freedom is intrinsic or inborn with the mind. It cannot but seek that unlimited happiness, though it cannot find it by any seeking. Longing for limitless freedom is inherent in all beings, but expressed more vividly in the human form, where 'conceptual thought' has reached its pinnacle by evolutionary process. Thus there is a fundamental human problem or dichotomy: he cannot but pursue a path to gain absolute inexhaustible happiness or freedom from all limitations, and he can never gain that happiness through any pursuit, since it is a path less land. This is where understanding the mind, its conditioning and how to transcend those conditionings so that the mind is ever free from all conditionings becomes important and this forms the fundamental or essential pursuit of human life.
It is interesting to note that any process of deconditioning the mind itself involves the mind or mental activity. That is, the mind itself conditions the mind, and it is also capable of deconditioning itself. Hence, Vedanta says 'mind is the problem and mind is the solution'.

D.From a Vedantic perspective (philosophical truths discussed in the end part of the Vedas called Upanishads), mind is considered to be subtle matter different from gross physical matter
Science can never prove or disprove the truth about myself, since its field of enquiry is limited to objective analysis or analysis of 'this' and not about the subject, I.
There is also confusion in that mapping of the brain is equated to mapping of the mind - it is like investigation of the hardware to find out about the problems in the software. Experience of pleasures and pains, emotions of love, compassion, fear, anxiety, hatred, etc are not easily quantifiable to determine cause-effect relations since they are subjective.

E.'Mind' is a general term used to designate the thinking aspect involved. In computer terminology it can be thought of as software in contrast to the hardware, namely the brain. In Vedanta, mind is considered as 'flow of thoughts' (vRRitti dhAra) or more correctly the basis on which the thoughts flow, rather than the flow itself. Just as a flow of water is called ‘river’, a flow of thoughts is the ‘mind’. We can have stagnant water but we cannot have stagnant thought, since thought itself involves a movement, although we could have regurgitated thoughts or a whirlpool of thoughts, when we are intensely attached to a particular theme. Mind can only think one thought at a time, but it can jump from one thought to the next like a monkey jumping from one branch to the other, without coming down to the ground. These are interconnected thoughts.

F.Death is defined as the separation of this subtle body from the gross body. The process of death involves mind collecting all its 19 physiological functions and exiting the body. According to Vedanta, death occurs when this subtle body finds the gross body no more conducive for its residence.

G.Parents give birth only to the physical body and not to the subtle body. The subtle body is considered to be made up of subtle matter, which is not perceptible to the sense organs.

Reference & Courtesy: An introduction to Vedanta - Dr.Sadananda

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