[Advaita-l] concept of soul
srirudra at vsnl.com
Fri Oct 12 11:47:45 CDT 2007
It was quite illuminating to reread the thread under the caption.I think so far science has not been able to dissect life to know where and when exactly it began or for that matter when it begins even now.Life is in many forms from unicellular to multicellular. Each individual cell will be alive as long as it is part of an entity called a larger life and once gets detached from the system it will not be able to play its role.Why it gets detached at the appropriate time to make way for further growth -called metabolism-and gets broken down -called catabolism -knowbody knows.We may at best say it just happens that way.The same process builds up and the same reverse process pulls down.We have labelled it as aging.The Bhagavat Gita says it is all Dhehanthara Prapthi:
So life gets boosted up we may call it a form of energy during growth and slowly but surely diminishes as one advances in years.So life is not Athma.Athma sustains life and when It calls it quits life becomes extinct.We may just for our understanding call Athma as a subtlebody.Athma is subtler than the subtlest and It just leaves as it were the grossbody.
Now if there is no Athma then the whole concept of all religions in exhorting the human beings to do good only etc will become a farce as there is nothing to get rewarded or punished.
If you read the 12th Stanza of 7th Chapter and also 4th stanza of the 9th Chapter of the Bhgava Gita it gives an idea of the concept of Athma.Here the Bhagavan says that Iam not in them though every thing proceeds from Me,they are in Me,and all beings exist in Me but I donot abide in them.If Athma is substituted appropriately for living entities i think we can understand that cells are in the Athma but Athma is not in the cells.So far life has not been produced from absolutely inert sterilised objects.Life has proceeded from life only as one lamp lights another.Life also comes into play only by Athma which we may call God/Brahman.
This is borne out by scientific studies on unexplained infertilities among couples who are biologically very fit to conceive but are not able to produce children.
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