Sunday, January 06, 2013

Atma is different from Mind


Atma(n) is different from Mind.

Atma(n) as well as Mind have no physical forms. It becomes therefore an intriguing subject to make a show cause how they differ.

Let us first look at what life is. As we live, we carry on a plethora of activities like eating, learning, earning, travelling, reading, watching  TV and so on. We also search for a life partner, marry and beget children. We call the sigma of all these day to day activities as life or as our engagements during the life-time.

It needs to be stressed here that unless there exists a thought, it can not be carried out or culminate in an action. Having understood that the backbone of action arises from thought process, the question where from the thoughts get generated can be easily answered by the following illustrations:-

We are shaped by our thoughts, we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves. Therefore think twice before we speak. The purpose of education is to replace an empty mind with an open one.  It is the mark of an educated mind to entertain a thought without accepting it. The mind is in its own place and in itself can make a Heaven a Hell or a Hell a Heaven. Age is an issue of mind over matter. It is imperative that the greatest thing in life is to keep our mind young.

The mind is instrumental for provocative actions. The parts of our physical body are able to carry out the actions in line with the plan of the mind. The activities of living beings are all centered by the thoughts of the mind. Life rolls on.

Living calls for actions of the mind where as the Atma(n) is devoid of thoughts and actions. It becomes crystal clear that life or living has no focus over Atma(n). In other words the life or living entirely rests with the mind which thinks and enable actions to follow for carrying on life. Atma(n) is not the mind nor in it.

Atma(n) is the true self of an individual beyond identification. a human being should acquire knowledge about the self  (atma jnana ) to realize that one's  true self is identical with the transcendent self Brahman. It can be argued that if atman is Brahman in a pot (body), then one need to break the pot to fully realize the unity of atma(n) with the brahman.

To explain further, atma(n) consists of 5 sheaths, consisting of the essence of food (annamaya kosha), the vital breath (pranamaya kosha), the will (manomaya kosha), the intellect (vigyanamaya kosha) and the bliss 9anandamaya kosha).

In the words of Paramacharya of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam, Atma stands as different from the mind.



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