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Fifteen Ways To Understanding The Nature of Mind

In the process of realizing the self, the role of the mind is vital. It is also very difficult to understand the mind. Therefore, our elders, who studied this mind from various angles, have given 15 names to it. These names will help in understanding the nature of mind.

They are:

1.    Manas or a wavery mind – A mind, which is under the influence of Maya or illusion, causes numerous problems in life. It is fickle and wavery. There is no firm decision. It sees too many forms and believes them to be true.

2.    Buddhi or Determined Mind – After getting the wavery thoughts, the pure consciousness, basing on its experience, determine things, as this is so and so. For example, this is water, this is earth etc. Then, it is called 'Buddhi'. This aspect is used to identify various aspects of life and its importance in daily life.

3.    Ahamkara or Feeling of 'I' ness – When the pure consciousness develops affection over the body that has formed of its elements like water, earth etc. and thinks that I am this body or I am this sense organ. Thereby it is creating an individual existence for itself. Then, it is called 'Ahamkara'. This aspect of the mind develops an attachment.

4.    Chitta or remembering Factor – When the pure consciousness, forgetting the cause-effect sequence, starts mixing the real and unreal factors, permanent and temporary factors in a haphazard manner, while doing so forgets some and remembers some, then it is called 'Chitta.'

5.    Karma or Action of Organs – When this consciousness show things that are not really existing and makes one to put in physical, sensual efforts to attain them, then, it is called 'Karma'.

6.    Kalpana or Creation – This pure consciousness is wholesome and indivisible. When it forgets this nature and imagines or contrives limitations with a body to it, then, it is known as 'Kalpana.'

7.    Samsmruthi or Smruthi or Recollection – The objects of this world are to be experienced by an individual. It has to be remembered while facing obstacles in life.

8.    Vaasana or Reminiscence – Depending on our previous birth, we exhibit certain vasanas. A person has to overcome through self-realization. Escape from the cycle of birth is only possible if we are able to come out of the circle of vasanas.

9.    Vidya or Wisdom – Wisdom is what helps us in understanding the Truth. That there is no second here and everything here is interconnected.

10.    Forgetfulness (Vismruthi) – This aspect of mind keeps us away from self-realization. We forget what we really are and chase the unreal. When we are able to overcome forgetfulness we see our true nature.

11.    Malam or Hallucination – The mind tries to keep us away from truth in innumerable ways. One such act of mind is to go after unfounded opinion or idea. Things which has no logic will be followed for mere pleasure.

12.    Indriya or Sense organ – A mind that is a slave of sense organ can never achieve bliss in life. For success and happiness in life, mind needs to gain control over the sense organs.

13.    Prakriti or Nature – Understanding that mind and body is a mere extension of nature and it does not have an individual existence is what is required. When mind things it is independent it is taking an individual down the wrong path.

14.    Maya or Illusion – This is the greatest obstacle a mind needs to overcome to have a happy and peaceful life.

15.    Kriya or Action of Mind – The action of the mind is to stay away from the maze created by illusion and ignorance. By reigning in the senses, the mind should achieve self-realization.