One of the knotty problems in Vedānta is the relation of ātmā with the three guṇas of prakṛti. Ātmā, although conditioned by the material guṇas, never contacts them. The guṇas of prakṛti are not inherent in the ātmā and have no direct contact with it. The self does not have any type of relation with the guṇas, such as contact (saṁyoga), because ātmā is not corporeal.
Different Types of Vṛttis - All acquired knowledge, valid and invalid, is a product of the mind (mano-vṛtti). Śrī Kapila says that there are five types of vṛttis (SB 3.26.30): saṁśayo 'tha viparyāso niścayaḥ smṛtir eva ca svāpa ity ucyate buddher
Because the nature of ātmā is jñāna, it is self-luminous. The ātmā’s intrinsic “I” is called ahamartha and is not the same as the conditional “I” called ahaṅkāra, which is projected through the mind to form a knot between ātmā and a material body. Ahaṅkāra is tangible as the delusion that a material body is the true self.
Section 2: The Conception of Advaita-vāda Advaita-vādīs offer authoritative quotations: yo vijñane tiṣṭhan — “It is that which is situated within consciousness.” (Bṛhad-āraṇyaka Upaniṣad,... Read More
Ātmā is nitya-nirmala, ever pure. This means it never mixes with the qualities (gunas) of matter (prakṛti), it is always distinct from matter, factually untouched by it. This is evident from a statement in Bhāgavata Purāna (5.11.12): “The pure self witnesses the activities of the impure mind.”
The first verse in this quotation describes what ātmā is not: It is not the physical body, mind, intelligence, life air or ego, because... Read More
By Satyanaryana Dasa Part 1: The Nature of Ātmā - Different schools of Indian philosophy and theology present different doctrines regarding the agency, enjoyership and knowership of ātmā, the individual self. Among them, the Vedānta schools accept the authority