Part XXXVII – Transmigration
Pure consciousness is all pervading and eternal.
Its reflection through the medium of subtle and
gross bodies is the expression of life. Identification
with the reflection is the notion of the jIva.
The reflection depends on the medium of reflection.
It is similar to convex, concave or plane mirrors where the
reflection is distorted due to the lack of straightforwardness
(Arjavam) of the reflecting surface. Hence when the mind and
intellect are crooked, the reflecting consciousness also appears
crocked. When the mind and intellect are impure, the reflection
is also dull. If the mind and intellect are pure the reflection
will be pure and shine in all its glory. Thus the BMI surface
acts ‘as though’ like a prism refracting the pure
light of consciousness into the VIBGYR (ROYGBIV in the UK)
pattern of different individuals, each with a different wave
length. But the essence is one and the same consciousness-existence
entity that “I am” – without any reflections
Here, we note that reflection or refraction
is not the problem. The VIBGYR pattern is not
the problem, the existence of BMI complex is
not the problem. Even their crookedness is not
the problem. They are part of the nature just
as existence of gold in varieties of ornamental
forms is its nature. Then where is the problem?
The problem arises with the identification of ‘I
am this’. That is the problem arises when
I take the image of reflection or reflected consciousness
as the original I, the all pervading consciousness.
Since ‘I am’ is ‘I am’ and ‘this
is’ is ‘this is’, the existence
of either of these two is not a problem just
as gold is gold and ring is ring. When gold feels ‘I
am a ring’- that identification with a
name and form contributes to suffering or saMsAra.
In that very identification, the problem of
the names and forms becomes my problem. The BMI
is limited and the limitations of BMI become
my limitations, although the existent-consciousness
entity that I really am is limitless. The BMI
continuously changes with what Vedanta calls
the six-fold modifications consisting of presence,
birth, growth, disease, decay and death, while ‘I
am’ is changeless and eternal. But due
to identification, I feel I am undergoing these
six-fold modifications and suffer as a consequence
of this identification.
Death is nothing but the separation of the subtle
body from the gross body. The subtle body, consisting
of the flow of thoughts constituting mind, intellect,
ego and memory, gathers all its faculties – the
faculties of senses, etc - and moves to different
fields of experiences (lokas). It takes a new gross
body by entering into the womb of a mother which
we call ‘birth’. Birth and death are
therefore the association and disassociation of
the subtle body with a gross body. In the gross
body, the consciousness reflects as existence – as ‘the
body is’. In the subtle body, the consciousness
is reflected as a being with notions of ‘I
Proceed to the next essay.