Mind, Intellect, and Liberation

Mind and Intellect are two different ways of functioning of the same Antahkarana (inner instrument) – the Sanskrit word for mind. When it functions in the form of receiving, sorting, distinguishing sensory input it is called as manas (aka mind); when it decides between two different courses of action or judges things or indulges in deep thinking, it is called buddhi (intellect); when it stores and retrieves memory it is called chitta (memory stuff); and when it wrongly identifies itself with the body and thinks it is the doer, it is called aham or ahamkara (ego or I-thought) – it is like the same man being addressed differently as father or boss or customer depending on the role and function he is performing. It is this aham or ego that we generally identify ourselves as being, but such aham is only a thought process and hence not real and so cannot be you – it is the false-I. Once we realize this, we understand we are not the doer and we drop the “sense of doership” whilst continuing to act in the world, which is nothing but the true essence of Karma Yoga (action done without the “sense of doership”), and as good as liberation because in being so disposed towards action, the fruits of action, good or bad, do not attach themselves to you.

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