Prerequisite to jumping into Advaita Vedānta course, in this session we learn about fundamentals of Mind, Intellect, Vāsanā (also called saṃskāra), and Karma. Terms often referred to during the classes.
Feeler of emotions.
Seat of emotions, feelings, impulses. All your feelings about self, others, objects, world is seated in the Mind.
Thinker of thoughts.
“Is this information true or false?” That's the Intellect. The discriminating, judging, self-inquiring, calculating, evaluating power. Intellect needs to be highly developed to successfully discriminate Self from not-Self (Subject-Satya from Object-Mithya) and to assimilate the teachings into real life changes.
Intellect is generally dismissed in spiritual marketplace, where it's mostly biased towards exercise of EMOTIONS/FEELING GOOD.
Intellect is superior to Mind, yet both are entwined.
Vāsanā: (also called saṃskāra)
To answer this, both you and I have (1) Mind, and (2) Intellect (Know-How) on communicating with a person.
But what DETERMINES how I actually use Mind-Intellect to communicate… OR how you use Mind-Intellect to communicate?
Answer is Vāsanā. Meaning TENDENCY. Or inclination.
That means, if I have a tendency to interrupt while someone is speaking, then I will interrupt them.
If you have a tendency to offer compliments, then you will offer compliments to somebody you're speaking to.
Therefore, Vāsanā guides HOW the Mind-Intellect will RESPOND to any situation.
Infact, your personality is nothing but a conglomeration of Vāsanā's. It's what causes Individuality.
What causes a TENDENCY (Vāsanā)? Past action. Meaning, one has done it BEFORE. Hence it creates a momentum to repeat it.
Tip: After having sex, what do most think about? “When can we do it again!”. Now you have “Sex Vāsanā” created by past action (Karma). 🙂
Hence there is no Vāsanā without Karma, and no Karma without a Vāsanā. They are entwined.
Download visual mind map of this session.
Chart in teaching is made by my Vedanta teacher, James Swartz, from www.ShiningWorld.com
8 May 2018