— Realizing the Self —
Sometime in the journey of life, some of the following questions might have crossed your mind. Even if they haven’t, they eventually will certainly occur !
* Who am I? What am I? What is my real identity?
* How do my thoughts and feelings interact with the body?
* How to make my mind powerful? Breaking the mysteries of mind;
* Understanding thoughts, how they come and go, how to regulate them
* Why do we come under emotions, feelings, tension and stress
* How does an individual develops behavioral patterns, traits etc; how to transform them
* How to enjoy this precious life? How to lead a life of peace and bliss?
The first lesson is all about complete understanding of the self, which has remained a mystery that has eluded scientists, philosophers, great thinkers and many other intellectuals.
Soul and body
The human body is a complex pattern of physical energies. Atomic particles build together to form the organic structures and inorganic minerals, which perform the body’s chemical interactions, thus forming the basis of the hormonal and nervous control of the body. What we see as the old or young, ugly or beautiful, male or female, are also the differing levels of physical energies. However marvelous a machine the body may be, it is the presence of the non-physical conscious energy, the soul, which makes it function.
What Am I?
I am a living entity different from the body! Just as a person who speaks with the help of a telephone or listens to a call with the help of that instrument, has his entity different from that of the telephone – he himself being a living person who has the faculties or characteristics of feeling, thinking, willing and making effort. Similarly, the conscious entity in the body which uses the word “I” is different from the body which has eyes, ears, nose etc as it’s components. I am not the eyes, the ears or the mouth but I see with my eyes, speak through the mouth, hear with the ears and am their master. I am a soul (Atma), eternal and immortal. The body is mortal; I have got it to do actions and to experience the result of my actions. I am the doer and the one who experiences.
The soul is like a driver in-charge of the body, which serves as a carriage to the soul. The soul is a diamond, the body being the casket for it. When the soul leaves the body, the body is declared ‘dead’. Then people set about cremating it because, it’s valuable owner, the soul, has already left and the body is of no use. When the soul has relinquished the body, people say, “ the light (which is soul) has gone, that which lived in it has departed and the drama is over”
Faculties of a Soul
The soul is a living or a sentient being. It is said to be conscient or living because it can think and reflect; it can experience pleasure and pain, so also bliss and peace; it can bestir itself and make efforts and actions – good or bad. A soul has three faculties – mind, intellect and predispositions.
Mind is the thinking faculty of the soul. It is the mind that imagines, thinks and forms ideas. The thought process is the basis of all emotions, desires and sensations. It is through this faculty that, in an instant, thoughts can be projected to a distant place, past experiences and emotions can be relived or even the future can be anticipated. It is the mind that experiences the variations of moods. The mind is a faculty of the metaphysical soul, not be confused with the heart or the brain.