Memory, part of the Self?
sada at ANVIL.NRL.NAVY.MIL
Fri Feb 20 08:08:07 CST 1998
>On Fri, 13 Feb 1998, Chandran, Nanda (NBC) wrote:
>> Yesterday I was reading Taks with RM and there he explains the relevence
>> of the three states pointing out that it's not the body or the mind, but
>> something within which is the witness or the seer to all the three
>> states. For he says, if there's no such thing, after a deep sleep where
>> consiousness as we know it is absent, A Johnson might wake up as a
>> Clear enough! But then does it mean that the memory is associated with
>> the Self? If that's so, how's that after rebirth, when the Self assumes
>> another living form, we start afresh with no memory of the past birth?
This may be a late response to the topic as I was out of town. Still could
not resist from posting what I understand.
Just as with computers - memory involves the information in terms of
thoughts stored for subsequent use. - It is essentially a subtle matter -
Memory involves two aspects - objective memory and subjective memory _ Of
course there is also long time memory and short time memory - with age we
start loosing the later ones while we clearly remember the deeper
impressions from the long time events.
Objective memory - knowledge of say chemistry - physics - events - etc.
There is some subjective aspects of objective knowledge too- that makes
scientists egotistical where subjectivity comes through I and Mine - I
like chemistry or to put in the terminology of young teenagers - I love
chemistry - I hate biology etc. where I comes into picture.
There is subjective memory - Relationship to I the individual - all
involves I and mine - If one is asked who you are or one is ased to
introduce oneself - people can go on and on - how great family they come
from or how great they are and how great their children or grand children
are etc. - essence of I and mine. It is the case of identification of the
consciousness, I, with the subtle matter - I am this and that etc. and this
and that comes from memory. There are cases where people if they get
involved in an accident can loose this memory or connection to this memory
-They do not remember who they are and cannot identify their own loved
ones. It is like we have stored some memory but the paths connecting to
the memory is lost due to virus or accidentally pressing some wrong
buttons. The end result is we cannot tap that memory. Some people can
regain that memory slowly or with treatment.
In deep sleep these paths are also closed and as the mind and intellects
Now the question was, is this memory self? Obviously self as consciousness
it is not.
But self as used in the limited terminology as an individual I, then that
individuality with which I identify myself as I am this and this - that
this and this and this, is nothing but memory. Ramana classifies as - I
thought and this thoughts, aham vRitti and idam vRitti. I thought is the
ahankara or ego and a thought that arises because of I thought and this
thought is my thought is the mamakaara.
This is no problem as having this thoughts - a JNaani will have mind that
thinks, plans and executes thorough this thoughts. But he will not have
notions of I thought as I am this and this identifying with the limited
Body, Mind and Intellect or limited memory as I am this.
The subjectivity of the Objective knowledge will not be there. If JNaani
is scientist, he may still remain as a scientist but not egotistical
scientist. As Shankara declares in his Bhajagovindam sloka -
yogaratovaa bhogaratovaa sangharatovaa sanghavidheenaH
yadyat brahmani ramate chittam nandati nandati nadatyeva||
Naturally if JNaani speaks, he utilizes the memory containing the language
with its vacabulary and grammer rules. That why he makes sense and perhaps
To summarize, memory is part of subtle body. Self identified with the
memory is the role of individual self. Self identified with the total self
is true self or Brahman. Totality includes everything, but nothing in
Naval Research Laboratory
Washington D.C. 20375
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