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The real identity of human beings!

Updated on December 16, 2011

The spirit within!

Once again, I am attempting a hot topic. However, having gone through certain philosophical texts and the teachings of great saints like Ramana Maharishi, I hope I can attempt to do justice to the intriguing topic. Every one in every land always identify themselves as "i". They may converse in any language. Invariably they refer themselves always as "i" which is also the first person in grammar books. The talks would center around the 'i' as "I am so and so and I am from such and such place, I belong to such and such family, I have studied in such and such institutes. I am now working as a professional in such and such organization. The common point in all the above conversation is "I" and "I am". These two identities never changes anywhere!

Now let us analyze what they mean by this first person "I". It indicates their physical presence as a body with some identity fixed to it as name by the parents when the entity was born in this world. Strangely, it retains this title "I" till it reaches the tomb! But this "I" seems to be the common term for all talks or interactions be it a pauper or king. Now we have understood that this represents the gross material outer cover of the individual represented by the "I". Every one uses this. There is a riddle! All start with the "I". Is it a common factor of all human beings? Does it represent the perishable outer cover? When each one takes birth in this world, when they start talking they freely uses this term "I". But the philosophers assert that the term "I" represent only the indwelling spirit or the Self of the individual. The spirit of each individual is never different. It is like the ether we perceive. The spirit never acquires any of the qualities the physical body possess nor it is vitiated by the thoughts of the individual. As pure water is represented as a colorless odorless liquid, the spirit of any individual is attribute less. It simply IS. This is the only indication of the spirit within each body. Neither it comes, nor it goes. It has neither birth nor death. It is an ever existing imponderable phenomena. None can define the spirit as such and such. It is beyond the mind, words, thoughts and intellect. It can only be represented as "Not this, Not this". The Sanskrit equivalent is "Neti, Neti"(mere negation). We can never indicate this spirit as "this".

However in the ancient scriptures of Hindu philosophy, the spirit or self is represented as "Existence, Knowledge and Bliss" These are not the qualities as we understand.It exists for ever, It is full of Wisdom and It is Bliss". Mostly the terms represent certain abstract aspects by which we may roughly understand with our limited intellect. All the visible Universe has emanated from the pure spirit, it is sustained by it and every thing is absorbed in it in due course. We may consider the spider. It weaves the web from the saliva coming out of its mouth. It remains there for some period and it absorbs the web in the same way through the mouth as it has weaved it. In the Bagawat Geetha, Lord Krishna states, "All this(visible world) is a part of Me. We have to either rely on these affirmations. Otherwise we have no knowledge about the spirit.

The idols of Saibaba installed recently in Navi Mumbai(India)


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    • Dee42 profile image


      6 years ago from Beautiful Arkansas

      Wow, that was deep, and I loved it, great hub!

    • raakachi profile image


      6 years ago from Madurai / Tamilnadu / India

      A clear and exact definition for 'I', which would be differentiated by by the 'Maghans' that what we think about it in our point of view. Voted as beautiful.

    • profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Chennai in Tamilnadu, India.

      Thank you Sir, You have dealt this philosophy in a profound manner. I could perceive the true spirit behind your analysis. We are all co-pilgrims in the quest. It is really encouraging to read your thought on this subject. I understand that you read all great books and your knowledge is baffling. I learned a few more points after reading your beautiful comments. Thank you once again.

    • lone77star profile image

      Rod Martin Jr 

      6 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Fascinating and profound discussion. Thank you!

      Perhaps the "true self" (spirit) can be approximated. I understand what you mean by "Neti, Neti." (At least I think I do.)

      For me, spirit is simply source.

      The great Western philosopher, Rene Descartes, once said, "I think, therefore I am." Profound also, and I think he was onto something, but he fell far short of the wisdom of the Bhagavad Gita.

      My most profound spiritual experiences accompanied a sense of being source--not of awareness or perception, as with Descartes' statement, but of creation.

      Perception is a physical (effect) thing. Creation is a non-physical (cause) thing. Source creates. I suspect it may not even perceive, in the sense of mortal perception. What spirit witnesses is creation and the product of creation. This isn't the "at-effect" perception of the physical body.

      The "existence" and "knowledge" of which you spoke sound like the Buddhist paramitas -- the perfections. These are the spiritual "one-sided" coins reflected in physical reality as two-sided dichotomies -- existence-non-extant, knowledge-mystery, but also wisdom-stupidity, confidence-doubt. These may well be the "forbidden fruit" mentioned in the Judeo-Christian Garden of Eden.

      Mortal confidence, for instance, is nothing like the pure form of confidence in spirit. All forms of mortal confidence have a drop of doubt in them. "Faith" or paramita confidence does not.

      This is the essence of what Jesus Christ had when he walked on water. This is the essence of what Peter the fisherman had when he stepped out of his storm-tossed boat onto the Sea of Galilee to meet his master.

      This is the state of bliss and grace where all things are possible.


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