[Advaita-l] Rebirth

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Fri Oct 23 10:07:46 CDT 2009


> The physical body which is made of the five elements of nature goes back once burried or cremated
> The Atman which is teh Bathman itself is common in all living beings that is never born or never dies
> Than we are left with only the mind....  here chitta is storage of all thoughts and experiences, buddhi is the intelligence and ahankara is an illusion. Out of these which, I am not able to understand,  takes rebirth!!! These three can be at the most can be contenets, but what is the container that carries?

First, a question in response to your question:


Is the mind material or not?


If your answer is no, the mind is not made of matter, then you are outside

the Indian philosophical traditions and you have to find an answer outside

of vedAnta. Your answer might well be that there is no rebirth at all and

that this one life is all there is.


If your answer is yes, the mind is made of matter, but we can't see it,

then the answer to the reborn entity is obvious. It is the subtle stuff that

belongs to the person, which is reborn eventually. The standard vedAnta

answer adds all the other elements of the sUkshma SarIra to the entity

that gets reborn - manas, buddhi, the prANas and the subtle forms of the

senses. The consciousness of the Atman is reflected in these, but the

physical death of the body does not mean that the mind loses its ability

to reflect this consciousness. Therefore, it continues with a superimposed

individuality through multiple physical bodies. 


Once the mind realizes that its existence is itself an illusion, it has nothing

more to do but vanish, so there is no more rebirth. That is why the upanishat

says about the jnAnI - na tasya prANA utkrAmanti and atraiva samavanIyante -

his vital functions do not leave the physical body upon its death, instead

they are absorbed in the physical body itself.



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