What is Mind? Where is it Located?
The whole world is perceived through five senses – seeing, hearing, taste, smell and touch. There cannot be any object which is beyond the periphery of these senses. Think of anything which you have never seen, never heard, never tasted, never smelled and never touched. You may run the horses of your mind day-in day-out, but you will not get any answer. So, we can say that all thoughts in our mind or simply ‘the mind’ is nothing but the permutation combination of the inputs through these senses. And these all inputs which are being perceived in the present or have already been perceived in the past or past lives are stored in our subconscious mind or the ‘Chitta’.
Chitta is the storehouse of all the perceptions in the form of experiences and these impressions of experiences, whether good or bad, are called samskaras. These samskaras once imprinted, remain there forever till this mind exists, not just for one life but till the salvation happens. Every individual on this earth comes with this baggage of samskaras (impressions of past lives) which is the root of the different thought processes amongst all.
Therefore, this whole thought process in any individual is because of relation of sensory inputs and the samskaras and that is the reason why all individuals think different on seeing the same object. For example, by seeing roses in the flower pot, a teenager may think of presenting a rose to his girlfriend and to have a kiss in return. Whereas, a painter may think of its colours, the depth, the petals, the beauty and would just get engrossed in its contouring. A horticulturist, on the other hand, may think of its species, the genetic engineering behind and how it was nurtured, while for a devotee it would only remind him of his deity or Guru to whom he may offer these.
I hope now it is clear to you that this whole world is perceived through mind. So, anything related with this world is created by your mind or to say ‘you’. Now if I relate this to your daily life then this me, mine, attachment, greed, anger, hatred, pride, egotism, passions, desires are all because of this mind. So this whole garbage of lust, anger, passions to say a few is created by you.
Now people ask – how to come out of anger? How to remove attachments? And this list goes on and on and on. Well, if you have created something, then only you can come out of it. This is in the habit of mind that it creates a web, gets entangled in it, then starts trembling to come out of it, and when it fails then it looks for help. And most of the time it looks for help in its own created web and gets more entangled.
It’s only the enlightened master who has the power to rescue. Master gives the sword of wisdom by which you can cut this web and come out of it. Our scriptures say that mind is the cause of suffering and this mind itself will be the cause of liberation. It is because of the ignorance of this mind that it gets entangled in this world which is created by mind itself. On the contrary, by understanding it, knowing it and transcending it, one can attain salvation. Whenever there is a knot, the knot can be opened in the same place but the only problem is that this knot does not know that it is a knot.
That is the reason why a living master is needed in this life to unknot this knot of ego, entanglements and suffering.
Mind divides itself into three things: the observer, the observed and the observation. It identifies itself with the observer first i.e. the body, then perceives objects as different from itself and due to the process of observation it creates different relationships with those objects.
Mind is like a monkey. A monkey may sit idle but a monkey bitten by a serpent can never sit idle and that is the condition of the human mind which is bitten by the serpent of desires. It keeps on moving here and there looking for the worldly pleasures, it always keeps munching on one thing for long thus creating lust, greed, attachments etc., and it keeps on jumping from one branch to another i.e. changing relationships, shifting from one mood to another. Monkey also has a unique habit of mimicking. It tries to mimic others irrespective of good or bad and the same goes for the mind. If other has a luxury car then it has to have a luxury car. If other has a big brick house then it has to have a similar house, no matter how hard it is to get there. And the list is endless. You know it better.
Now the question arises where this bitten monkey – ‘the mind’ located anatomically? Is it in the brain? You dissect it and try to find out. Is it in the heart? What happens when one goes through an open heart surgery? If it was located in the heart, the surgeon would have come to know everything in that mind. So where the hell is it located?
If mind was an organ, then its infections would have been – attachment, desire, greed, anger, lust, pride, egotism, I-ness etc. and any such infection could have been easily treated through right medication or surgery. This proves that mind is not an organ either. And it is surely not something which a normal human being perceives.
Mind is very subtle and is located in the whole body, in each and every cell and atom of this body and also outside the body. Mind is that invisible power that keeps on doing its work uninterruptedly. But we can certainly gain command over this power – through awareness and consciousness which leads to an ever-blissful state. The key for which is given by a true master.