Jiva and Buddhi
Jiva is a Sanskrit equivalent of the word soul.
In incarnated state, the jiva is attached to its material body. It lives in the body and perceives the world with the help of the body’s organs of sense; it thinks with the help of the body’s brain. This is why it is so difficult for incarnated people to disidentify themselves — even mentally — with the body and the mind (manas in Sanskrit).
When the material body dies, the jiva continues to live in non-material spatial dimensions: some jivas live in the eons of hell, some others live in paradisiacal abodes. This depends on in what state of the consciousness one got used to live during one’s incarnated life. After the death of the body, those accustomed to coarse (i.e. hellish) states of the consciousness continue to live in these states among other souls like them; this is what hell is. Those who have accustomed themselves to life in subtle and tender states, who have ridden themselves of anger and other kinds of emotional coarseness — they appear in paradise. Also we should remember that in most cases life in non-incarnated states is much longer than life in material bodies.
What is the purpose of these incarnations? Can the only purpose here consist in the idea that terrifying and fearsome God-Judge sorts us out between hell and paradise after the death of our bodies? Nonsense! Yet this is a belief of the followers of many primitive religious movements!
No, in reality the Creator incarnates us in His Creation in order that we may develop ourselves intellectually, ethically, aesthetically, develop the power aspect, master in all the fullness the complex of emotions that are called in general by the word LOVE. The latter is the most important thing!
Depending on whether we master it well or poorly, the Creator (through Holy Spirits) forms our future destinies (karma), which are perceived by most people either as good or bad. Good destiny is that when He creates for us pleasant conditions for continuing our self-development. Bad destiny is created by Him so that we, having appeared in unpleasant conditions, begin to seek the way out (this concerns our worldview, first of all), so that we understand the meaning of our lives on the Earth and begin to realize it as quickly as possible.
Therefore we have to regard both good and bad destinies as a boon. It becomes more understandable if we start to regard ourselves in all situations as disciples of God, who sends us to the Earth for learning. And He is not going to give up teaching those of us who display to Him their prospectiveness, until they become worthy of merging with Him and enriching Him in this way!
It is with this purpose that our Creator creates material worlds and sends souls to them — so that these souls develop and evolve. In this way the process of the Evolution of the Universal Consciousness goes on!
But in order to infuse into the Creator we have to cognize God in all of His Aspects: as the Creator, as the Holy Spirits, and as the Absolute.
However, while one remains a jiva (incarnated or non-incarnated), one cannot fulfill this task in fullness. Being a jiva, we can only prepare ourselves to higher stages of development and to direct cognition of God. How do we do this? — by developing in ourselves all the aforementioned positive qualities and by getting rid of negative qualities. This task can be solved more easily with the help of the methods of psychical self-regulation, which are a part of knowledge called raja yoga. After all, we have to achieve, among other things, energetical purity of the organism and good health: while the body is contaminated with coarse energies one cannot develop in subtle and subtlest spatial dimensions. And the Creator that we have to cognize is the most subtle component of the Absolute!
Preparing ourselves to the higher stages of self-development — to buddhi yoga — we have to make the anahata the dominant chakra. It is this chakra that is responsible for producing the emotions of love! And nothing but these emotions allow us to refine ourselves!
Emotions are states of ours (as consciousnesses). And we have to master subtle and subtlest emotional states, have to become used to living in them!
Moreover, it is emotions of love that allow the soul to become capable of MERGENCE! We learn this first by loving people and other manifestations of life in the Creation. Then we can direct our developed capability of loving towards the Creator.
… And what is buddhi?
Contrary to the jiva, the buddhi is the part of the consciousness that is formed and further developed — with the help of the methods of buddhi yoga — in subtle and subtlest spatial dimensions outside one’s material body.
Development of the buddhi is ensured by direct growth of the spiritual heart, which is formed in the beginning on the basis of the chakra anahata. (One may describe it also as growth, expansion of the chakra anahata outside of the material body).
So let the spiritual heart grow to sizes of meters, kilometers, and even more!…
Then one has to supplement the developed anahata with other chakras developed to the necessary degree. In this way one forms the structure called dharmakaya — “body of the Path”. The term dharmakaya denotes one of the higher stages of development of the buddhi (which is followed by several other important stages of self-development on the spiritual Path).
Developing ourselves as dharmakayas we gain even higher independence of the material body during incarnated life. We become less susceptible to illnesses and other harmful factors. Also grows the power of the consciousness, which depends on the size of the consciousness and its ability to move outside the body. We learn to think without the use of the body, also to heal the body by influencing it from outside. But the most important thing is that it becomes easier for us to communicate with our Teachers — Holy Spirits. And this is one of important conditions for development of wisdom and for further self-improvement.
He who has achieved the fullness of Perfection as a buddhi — merges with the Primordial Consciousness (the Creator); such a Perfect One can be called a Buddha*.
Yet there is an even more attractive stage of development: when the Perfect Buddhi merged with the Primordial Consciousness substitutes completely for the jiva incarnated in the material body…
* * *
Many people live without thinking about why they live. They live by primitive egocentric attractions and reflexes: they seek pleasures, seek satisfaction of their greed and aggression…
The surrogate purposes suggested to the members of the dominant religious movements — how to avoid going to hell and go to paradise through participation in rituals, through begging forgiveness from God for committed or non-committed sins, or even through killing infidels — are not helpful from the evolutionary standpoint.*
God does not need anything like this from us! He needs that we strive to become better, to become Perfect — according to His Evolutionary Intention!
… What can I suggest to everyone to do? To study and to accept the God’s Intention, to find one’s own place in the common Process of the Evolution of the Universal Consciousness — both in the aspect of mastering concrete methods of self-development and in the aspect of participating in this Great Process through one’s own service.
Life filled with such everyday work, which is a manifestation of our love for God, is truly happy and blissful!
It is LIFE FOR GOD — life for Him rather than for myself!
Vladimir Antonov, Ph.D. (in biology)
Translated from Russian