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The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali - Book 4 - Illumination
19. Because it can be seen or cognized, it is apparent that the mind is not the source of illumination.

This sutra and the two following give us a typical oriental approach to a very difficult problem, and this method of reasoning is not an easy one for western minds to grasp. In the six schools of Hindu philosophy this whole problem of the source of creation and of the nature of the mind is dissected and discussed and so completely covered that practically all our modern schools can be regarded as outgrowths or logical sequential results of the varied Hindu positions. The clue to the diversity of opinions on these two points may perhaps be found in the six types into which all human beings fall, for the seventh is but the [412] synthesis of them all and inclusive, not exclusive.

In the Yoga Sutras, the mind is relegated simply to the position of an instrument, of an intermediary, of a sensitive plate, registering either that which pours into it from above or that which affects it from below. It has no personality of its own; it has no life or light of its own, except that which is inherent in all substance and therefore to be found in the atoms which constitute the mind stuff. These latter, being along the same evolutionary line as the rest of the lower nature, swell the tide of material forces which seeks to hold the soul prisoner, and constitute the great illusion.

The mind, therefore, can be cognized in two directions: first, it can be known, recognized and seen by the thinker, the soul on its own plane, and secondly, it can be seen and known as a vehicle of the man on the physical plane. For a long time man became that with which he identified himself to the exclusion of the true spiritual man, who can be known, contacted and obeyed once the mind is relegated to its rightful place as an instrument of knowledge.

A physical plane analogy may help here. The eye is one of our major senses, that whereby we acquire knowledge, a medium through which we see. We, however, do not make the mistake of regarding the eye itself as a source of light and as that which produces revelation. We know it as an instrument which is responding to certain light vibrations whereby certain information is conveyed anent the physical plane to our brain, [413] that great receiving plate upon the physical plane. To the soul, the mind acts also as an eye or a window through which information comes, but is not itself the source of light or illumination.

It is interesting here to note that as the brain and the mind became coordinated, (as was first the case in Lemurian days) the sense of sight was simultaneously developed. As evolution proceeds, a higher coordination takes places, and the soul and the mind become at-oned. Then, that organ of subtle vision (the third eye) begins to function, and instead of mind, brain, and two eyes, another triplicity supersedes and we have soul, mind and the third eye. The brain, therefore, is not the source of illumination but becomes aware of the light of the soul and of what it reveals in the realm of the soul. The third eye simultaneously develops and admits its possessor into the secrets of the subtler realms in the three worlds, so that the brain receives illumination, information and knowledge from two directions; from the soul via the mind, and from the subtler planes in the three worlds via the third eye. It should be remembered here that the third eye reveals primarily the light to be found in the heart of every form of divine manifestation.

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