Those who mistake the route to be the root stay uprooted
Many people confuse the mind with the soul because both are inside. However, the soul and the mind differ cognitively, constitutionally and functionally. Cognitively, the soul is the root of consciousness, whereas the mind is the route of consciousness. The mind is the instrument through which the soul’s consciousness links with the outer world. So wherever our mind goes, that’s what we become conscious of.
Constitutionally, the soul is spiritual, whereas the mind is material, albeit subtle material. Functionally, the soul is the reservoir of purity, being a part of Krishna. But the mind is the reservoir of impressions, most of which are mundane and impure. Why? Because these impressions have come from our past actions most of which have been material and sensual, even immoral.
As long as we don’t realize our spiritual identity, we stay uprooted, being disconnected from our spiritual essence. And even when we want to be spiritual such disconnection continues if we mistake the mind to be the soul and assume whatever we feel internally is spiritual. Presently, our inner feelings come largely from the mind, whose materialistic impressions usually give rise to mundane feelings. So if we let our feelings determine our actions, then we will practice spirituality only occasionally, whenever the fickle mind temporarily likes spiritual activities. Practicing spirituality erratically won’t make us self-realized, just as taking medicines erratically won’t make a patient healthy.
The Bhagavad-gita (06.07) indicates that we can attain the spiritual platform only when we conquer the mind. Conquering the mind includes of course overcoming the illusion induced by the mind that it is the same as the soul. When we let scripture guide our inner quest, we go undistractedly beyond the route to the root – we progressively realize the self and relish its eternal ecstatic nature.
Explanation of article: