Download mind-map for Lesson 34.

1) Give the equation for happiness. How can the quantum of happiness experienced be increased?

Firstly, what is “happiness”?

It is a state of mind.

What kind of “state”?

State that is FREE of agitations.

What are agitations caused by?

Either by (1) AVOIDING pain, or (2) SEEKING pleasure.

What causes agitations?

Unfulfilled desires. Meaning, I SEEK to gain pleasure or AVOID pain, but either/both remain unmanifested.

Therefore, quantum of happiness can be increased by reducing agitations in the mind.


1) FULFILLING desires: Meaning one does action that BRINGS pleasure, or AVOIDS pain.

In short: Do more of what is ALREADY WORKING to bring happiness.

OR by…

2) Reducing desires ENTERTAINED:
Meaning, one invests less time/effort in contemplating, imagining, talking about, fantasizing or performing #1 above.

Both ways work for increasing happiness quotient.

But #1 is subject to time. So it only brings happiness temporarily.

EG: A smoker is bound to light another cigarette only a few minutes later. A young couple is bound to entertain another sexual experience only hours/days after having sex.

Because nature of fulfilling ANY desire is that it produces a momentum, which causes one to fulfill it again, before agitation of unfulfilled-desire starts to itch.

Isaac Newton's 3rd law further supports this observation: For every ACTION (desire fulfilled), there is an equal and opposite REACTION (repeat same desire).

Therefore solution to lasting happiness is:

Method #2. Because by REDUCING desires entertained, the itch for desire begins to wilt. Like refusing to water the house plant, it eventually dies.

However, either way, we can conclude the Happiness equation as:

Happiness = (Desires Fulfilled) / (Desires Entertained)

2) Human beings are confronted with the problem of choosing one of the two paths at every single moment of their lives. Comment.

This statement is easily understood by any parent of a toddler, or observing children in general. For example…

Offer the toddler a sense-gratifying object, whether a toy or a sweet.

Toddler immediately, almost as if without faculty of “thinking”, grabs it.

This is called “Path of Pleasant”.

And this emotionally-pleasing and sense-tantalizing Path can continue throughout one's life if left Religiously uneducated to look to higher ideals.

It is state of most of world's citizens today. And is an enticing Path, hard to resist. Because it's FRUIT IS EASY TO OBTAIN and brings INSTANTANEOUS ENJOYMENT.

But at expense of inevitable sorrow. Because the objects condition ENDS. For example, last ice-cream lick is the beginning of sorrow for absence of MORE sense-appealing ice-cream.

This repetitive experience in all humans eventually causes one to abandon, be turned off to, or lessen the influence of “Path of Pleasant”.

Therefore he or she pursues “Path of Good”. This Path follows proven Scriptural or Religious rites, advices or recommendations in order to life a permanently happy life.

But it is NOT EASY. It does not bring immediate FRUIT or ENJOYMENT.

In fact, FRUIT of this path can take months, years or even lifetimes.

What's more, it directly tests one's patience and courage to deny immediately pleasing VS. delayed gratification.

For this reason, humans are confronted persistently with choose “Path of Pleasant” VS. “Path of Good”.

Because it's human heritage to enjoy. To not experience suffering. It's inbuilt into creation as Samanya Dharma, in form of “ahimsa“.

Therefore impulse is to obtain enjoyment and remove suffering NOW!

But as observed, this “NOW” simply fails to hold up to “permanent happiness”, which is what all humans are actually seeking.

3) How would you bring about harmony and peace in the present turbulent world? Justify your answer.

There are 2 ways to bring about harmony and peace to the world.

FIRST is how most jīvātmā's (individual who doesn't identify with paramātmā, but rather with Body, Mind, Intellect) in world (jagat) attempt to establish harmony and peace (śāntiḥ).

Which is to change that which is other then then themselves. (Anything outside them).

Meaning either to change other individuals – or the secular-materialistic world through improvements of government, imposition of new laws, selection of new presidents and optimization of nations GDP, aesthetics, medical availability and transportational infrastructure.

The fact that jīvātmā (person ignorant of their eternal nature) is attempting to change the world in hopes to bring harmony and peace… is fueled by an un-investigated ASSUMPTION that: IF THE WORLD IMPROVES, I WILL IMPROVE.

This stems from superimposition (adhyāsa) of one's own mind (conditions, beliefs, values) – onto the world and people. EG: Religious fundamentalists preaching “God” with use of loud megaphones on street corners.

In reality, this method is bound to fail or at least only work temporarily. Because world is constantly CHANGING.

Also because it assumes everyone is going to agree with the aspirants view. But this is unrealistic in most cases, especially in modern age of short attention span.

Therefore, I do not agree with the FIRST method.

And suggest the SECOND method. Which is to ask:


Logic is simple:

If I work on purifying my own mind, finding the light of joy, peace and harmony within myself… then…  my attitude will automatically reflect that to outside world.

And this will inevitably influence those I'm associated to. Or those whom I make contact with.

And they may (or may not) in some way begin to inquire, how they too can reach this state of Perfection.

This is an indirect approach. And it works because it's how all humans fundamentally learn…BY EXAMPLE.

We learn BEST and FASTEST by modelling after those that exude inspiring qualities, such as Divinity, Purity, Peace and Harmony.

SECOND method is not theoretical. If you assess your own life, you'll realize you are here today because someone with GREAT qualities – showed you what's possible. Hence you were compelled to a more harmonious and peaceful life.

So now, it's your turn to SHINE these GREAT qualities – so you too can touch others.

4) What are the constituent parts of a human being? Write one short sentence describing the main function of each one of them.

Human being is a synergy of 4 basic parts:

1) Gross Body

This is our physical body.

It's main function is to receive stimulus data from the outside world through it's 5 organs of knowledge.

Which are: eyes, ears, tongue, nose and skin.

For example, a person who's physical eyes are damaged, will not receive visual data.

Therefore, the body is our instrument through which we can interpret, engage with, and learn about the world.

All human bodies are the same. No human has more-less muscles, teeth or ribs from the next individual (unless through genetic anomaly).

Bodies only differ on the surface.

2) Mind

Mind is seat of feelings, emotions or impulses.

Feeling unease about your husband/wife being late? That's the mind. 🙂

Experiencing unpleasantness during a conversation? Mind.

Function of mind is to provide an appropriate emotion/feeling associated with data RECEIVED by 5 sense organs of the physical body.

Mind is common to all sentient creatures.

EG: Pulling a dogs tail will immediately cause dog to respond with a vicious bark or bite. This kind of “vicious behavior” can only be motivated with an emotion. In this case being ANGER.

3) Intellect

“To arrive in shortest time, should I take route A or route B?”

This is intellect. It's our evaluating, calculating, judging, discerning, assessing, discriminating power.

It's that which gives us power to resist sensual temptation (Path of Pleasant), by rationalization and evaluation how it may affect my life and others.

And it's function is to direct the flow of emotions and thoughts to an appropriate action.

In context of Liberation, function of Intellect is to discriminate Real-Unreal (satya-mithya). Hence it's the most important faculty of a spiritual aspirant.

4) Consciousness

This is the Principle that gives the first 3 their sentience.

It's THAT because of which the first 3 are known to you (“I have a body, mind, intellect”).

It's THAT because of which the experience of the world (assimilated by the first 3) is known.

Example: Because of WHAT is your thought or emotion known? Because of Consciousness.

If your Consciousness or Awareness is stripped out of your experience, will you know about your experience? No. Because who's there to be Conscious or Aware of anything?

5) Enumerate three differences between the mind and the intellect.

1) Mind is seat of impulses, feelings/emotions produced upon contact with world objects-experiences. For example, if I'm driving in peace, and unexpectedly a high speed car zooms past me… the feeling at that time ABOUT the situation and the object involved in it, is a by-product OF the Mind.

Intellect is faculty that discriminates truth from falsehood. It's judging, assessing, evaluating, calculating power. Meaning it takes what is receives and rationally calculates what action or course would result in the highest and greatest good for the individual and the environment.

2) Mind is like the natural movement of flow of water. It's innocent and only knows unceasing movement.

Intellect is like the banks of river that guide the flow of water to certain path or direction.

3) Mind is like the receiving clerk sitting in the office that receives that mail, opens the mail and responds emotionally according to the mails inquiry or message.

Intellect is like the officer in charge that then takes that mail and decides WHAT IS TO BE DONE as response to the mails message.

6) Explain the importance of the intellect in the human system.

We can answer this in a short sentence: Use it or lose it.

This especially applies to Intellect. And if left unexercised, uninformed, uneducated… then it's faculty of discrimination will be at the whims, or superseded by the Minds emotions.

Meaning, individual with a dull intellect will be a never-ending dancer to the tunes and fluctuations of ever changing worldly circumstances… guided mainly by their Mind's emotions. And this unquestionably and predictably results in “sometimes happy, sometimes not”. In other words: SUFFERING.

Therefore Intellect is one's most precious gift as a human being to be used to guide one to a sensible, stable and harmounious life.

Because it's the intellect that molds both the external-sense-data and the Mind's matching emotions to that data… into an intelligent response… that is beneficial to oneself and the community. Therefore EVERYONE PROSPERS when Intellect is properly exercised.

But most importantly, because the Intellect is the DISCRIMINATING power (which only humans enjoy amongs our sentient species)… it is humans PRIMARY resort or solution to discriminating REAL (satya-Subject) from the UNREAL (mithya-Object).

Meaning in pursuit of mokṣa, the Intellect needs to be sharp, acute and well-exercised.

7) The mind and the intellect equipments are compared to a machine. Equate the other parallels in the simile.

(1) Raw material is compared to _____________________________________
(2) Service manual to _______________________________________________
(3) Finished products to_____________________________________

1) Raw material:

This refers to the raw sense data from the “external world” that is picked up by Gross body's 5 sense organs (eyes, ears, nose, tongue, skin).

2) Service manual:

Just like any machine has a maintenance procedure to keep it operating at optimum efficiency… and if left unmaintained, it distorts it's final output production.

Similarly, the mind and intellect need an educational service manual (śruti), therefore instructions, in order to make contact with the world in a harmonious, efficient and effective manner. Else suffering, clumsiness and unnecessary mistakes ensue.

3) Finished product:

Once the sense data has been assigned an emotion of the Mind and judgement given by Intellect… the quality-texture therefore of the Mind-Intellect will determine quality-texture of the action expressed through the 5 organs of Action (Hands, Feet, Sex Organs, Anus, Speech).

8) Define life, experience, and samsāra.

Life is a unceasing continuation of various experiences occurring in every moment from birth to death of one's body.

Experience is constituted by 3 factors: Subject (Witness or ExperiencOR) + Object (ExperiencED) + Relationship between Subject/Object (ExperiencING).

Finally, saṃsāra in generally equated to “Worldly entanglements”. And it doesn't necessarily refer to the outside world. But rather “entanglement” within the individual due to dis-integration of their 4 personalities: 1) Physical, 2) Emotional, 3) Intellectual, 4) Spiritual.

Hence friction with Subject and Object is experienced.

9) Explain the significance of the analogy of lighting a candle.

Persons sense of individuality (ego) is like wax of a candle that keeps the wick (vāsanās) erect.

Meaning ego (Ignorance about one's nature as Brahman) reinforces vāsanās (tendencies). Which is as good as saying, the wax (ego), keeps the wick (vāsanās) erect, expressing it's sense of individuality.

And this wax (ego) only melts the wick (vāsanās; Individuality) when the fire (Self-Knowledge is acquired) lights up – ultimately burning the upright erect standing ego back into Self as the Self.

10) Distinguish the ‘law of karma’ from the ‘law of destiny’.

Law of Karma constitutes two factors:

1) Law of Destiny (prārabdha):

This means a human is result of their PAST actions (fueled by vāsanās).

EG: If one has practiced forgiveness for some years, then TODAY he/she has a forgiving temperament.

OR If one has spoken insensitively to people for some years, then TODAY he/she will exude a displeasing temperament towards others.

In summary: one's present condition is result of their PAST actions. Hence the FUTURE is simply a continuation of the Present.

Therefore “Law of Destiny” is WHAT (people, circumstances, objects) you meet in life.

2) puruṣārtha:

This is gift granted only to human begins. And it's what separates animals Destiny from humans Destiny.

Which is ability to apply conscious, rational, decisive, and calculating SELF-EFFORT at every moment in the Present.

Animals are striped of puruṣārtha. IE: Even though they have instinctual “free will” (EG: to run away from it's prey) – their puruṣārtha is limited therefore to survival-reproduction carnal instincts.

Meaning, humans prārabdha (Destiny) is mixed with power of puruṣārtha (Self-effort or intelligently applied free will). And this comprises the full definition of “Law of KARMA”.

11) How does the illustration of a boat moving in a river clarify the relationship between self-effort and destiny?

A boat which lacks a ruder or motor will go amidst the flow of the river stream.

Meaning the rivers destiny (wherever the river is to end up) = the boat's destiny (since it can't make course of correction).

This is equated to a person who is NOT exercising puruṣārtha (self-effort). They are bound to end up wherever the winds of Maya blow according to unceasing environmental changes. Like a dead leaf blown helplessly by the wind.

Whereas, putting a rudder or motor in the boat, is equated to continued direction of the rivers flow… but with addition or POWER of correction (puruṣārtha).

This means, even though one's destiny is flowing a certain trajectory… because of application of self-effort… the boat's trajectory (prārabdha) is gradually and consciously molded by the individual's self-effort.

12) Write a short paragraph on what you understand by the term ‘vāsanā’.

What causes person A to communicate in an interruptive manner, while Person B patiently listens?

Meaning both have Knowledge how to communicate, and have emotions. Yet the APPLICATION of that Knowledge (Intellect) and Emotions (Mind) is expressed differently.

This difference of expression (individuality) is cased by a vāsanā.

And what is an expression (individuality), other then implication of PAST tendency of having done it before.

For example, a smoker lights another cigarette because of their PAST action of smoking… which has caused a tendency (vāsanā) to repeat the action of Smoking.

Meaning vāsanā is our tendencies about everything. EG: how to live OR how to behave.

In other words, our personality is just a conglomeration of vāsanās about different situations.