Yoga and Ayurveda View of the Mind Audio
In modern medicine brain, mind and consciousness are equated, with the mind regarded as only a function of the brain, and consciousness merely a function of the mind. Mind and consciousness are reduced to brain chemistry, as if there were no real intelligence or real person there.
In Yoga and Ayurveda brain, mind and consciousness are regarded as related but different and can be clearly discriminated from each other at physical and subtle levels, extending into higher dimensions of awareness and Self-realization.
The brain is purely physical and reflects primarily the life and urges of the physical body and social personality. However, higher energies and thoughts can move through the brain according to its connection with the deeper mind that is a subtle form of energy, and pure consciousness that is beyond all thoughts and desires.
The mind only holds the reflection of true consciousness, which is transcendent and non-conceptual. The mind is not conscious in its own right, but only holds a reflection of our deeper consciousness. Our minds are largely subconscious or unconscious, driven by various instincts, emotions, memories and compulsions hidden deep within us. The outer mind brings intelligence into the body and the senses for dealing with physical reality and its numerous demands, but cannot perceive any enduring truth or reality beyond the external world.
There is also an inner mind that holds our deeper karmas along with the energies of the subtle body that transcends death, which connects to a higher consciousness beyond our creaturely embodiment. We must understand the different functions of the outer and inner minds and learn to develop the inner mind, the discerning intelligence or buddhi, in order to reach true consciousness.
Pure Consciousness is our true Self beyond body and mind, which are but its instruments. It is one with Universal Consciousness and beyond the karmas of body and mind and the cycle of birth and death. This is the Atman or Purusha of Yoga and Vedanta. We must understand our true Self to know the real meaning of our existence and the universe as a whole.