What is soul?
It is impossible to define anything that is abstract, at best only a negative definition can be attempted. Jainism and the Bible speak of Soul as a substance, a simple partless to can’t be broken into pieces.
Existence of soul. Let us ask if we see air? No. But still we have to admit the there is some such thing as air, for its presence can be fact by the movement of the leaves of a tree. The action of soul is, similarly, perceptible in a living man, who moves, walks, plays and does work when he is dead there is no such movement. It is, therefore evident that there is some such thing which makes a man move. Body is simply the abode of Atma ; its dweller of soul is separate. The dweller of house is as separate from the house, as a sword is separate from the scabboard. Atma can be well-felt & perceived by those who develop the habit of introspection and looking into the secrets of the physical phenomena of willing, feeling and knowing and searching the truth of perception, intellect, memory, intuition, unafination, dreams, hallucinations as well as the significance of motions, purposes and discontentment with the achieved and desire for the unseen and unachieved.
The four stages of memory viz retention, recall, recognition and localisation are systematically
connected and the source of this connection cannot but through what we may term Soul.
There reader will it is certain agree that a purely material bran cannot work in such an exhaustive systematice and well-adjusted manner. Homer cannot be produced out of rattling of dice, and Differential calculus out of a clash of billiard balls.
Investigations made by the Psychical Research Society London, have also conclusively established the existence of soul and in some cases even truth of the theory of transmigeration. A mass of information was abtained about the organisation of the soul & its two minds-the subjective and objective. The wonderful phenomena observed by the members of the society & others were subjected to the most rigid and searching analysis and were classified and arranged on lines of scientific thought. Things which were regarded as quite outside the range of credibility and observation viz telepathy , telekinesis, clairvoyance and host of other phenomena were made subject s of experimental research, from which it was inferred that the soul is quite independent of the body and is made of a substance which completely differ from the matter of physical organism is inhabits.
Prof. H.N. Banerjee,head of the Deptt. of Para-Pychology of the Rajasthan University, feels on the basis of empirical studies earned by his research team that there are persons who have extra sensory perception, telepathy prediction & clairvoyance. According to him two hundred scientists are working in this branch of knowledge in the U.S.S.R alone in these days. Most countries have done away with their disbelief and are now actively inperested in the work being done.
(Indian Express. June 15, 1967)Many cases are known in which memory of the past lives were classified to have been recovered more or less fully. The physical body being burnt or buried or thrown to birds to serve at their meat or cast in the watery bed, it is the soul above that form the channel for the transfer of knowledge from one being to the other. This also conclusively proves existence of soul.
There is still another proof of its existence you are your outer sense the mouth or tongue to convey your ideas and the other one his outer ears to hear them. Now suppose your mentally multiply (a+b) by (a+b) and arrive at the answer a 2+2ab+b2. Is it necessary that you may use the tongue? No. Your mental tongue and ears if you want to use this phase, have solved the problem. This means that there are other organs besides the physical ones; you utter something and hear everything of such utterances; without missing a single syllable. These inner senses of eyes, ear and tongue etc are those of soul. It is the inner toungue which uttered the word a xa=a2, bxb=b2, axb=ab, bxa=ab and adding all these the result arrived at by the your daily newspaper loudly. Perhaps not and yet not a word uttered or unlistened.
Origin of soul. Soul is a self-existent entity without a beginning and without and end. It expresses itself in all its modes and moods through its sentimental lustre of “I am.” It does not orginate in the body, on the contrary, it is the originator of body. It is the architect as well as the propeller and controller of body. It is the eyes that see, it is the soul hears through the ears and so on. According to Jainism we are not bodies having the knowers, it is the souls which are the knowers. We should not say. “I am fat orthin” we should say “My body is fat or thin.” The connection of soul with body in its mundane state is as eternal as that of Iron with Gold in the form of Ore, yet it is not ever lasting .Soul can be free from the material body and made perfectly pure. The parents are no more than the channel for the passage of soul from one form into another, for the past character or tendencies lead it to take birth in a place which is congenial to nature, they are not the producers or makers of soul.
Attributes of Soul:1. Soul is real. You may call is a dream in the sense that our stay here is for a short while, otherwise it is a folly to cal something that is real as a mere dream.
Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal,
Dust thou are to dust returnest
Was not spoken of the soul.
2. Soul is immortal. Weapons cannot cut it, nor fire can burn it, nor water can drench it, nor wind can make it dry. This follows from the tact that soul is of as simple substance as opposed to compound object. What is partless cannot be broken into pieces; it is indestructible and therefore ever lasting.
3. Soul is blissful. Happiness and paid are modification of its feeling tone in its embodied condition. It has also a natural state of feeling quite its own and that feeing tone is blissfulness.
i) For behold the kingdom of God is within you,
ii) Out the fruit of spirit is joy, peace..................
4. All souls are of like nature. As he is, so in this world.
(Johan, IV, 17).5. There is no sex of souls. A soul is neither male not femal, nr an evench.
6. Soul can penetrate through or escape from the thickest wall of wood , glass or steel or any other substance; there is nothing that can confine it.
7. Soul is endowed with infinite energy. Soul’s faculty of migrating from one physical being to that of another is called the death of fomer-being and the birth in a new one.
8. Soul can assume any size. Telepathy is due to the peculiar property of a soul. Telepathy means communication between mind and mind other wise than through the known channel of senses. The fact is that a soul is one incarnation can assume the body of an ant and in other that of an elephant. According to the scientists a soul may expand to fill the whole universe without having to have its physical body. In fact mental functions like telepathy and clairyance work independently of the rules of space, time and mass. It is this peculiar power of soul which explain the mysterious phenomena occurring at closing moments of life. In certain cases, when the soul of the dying man is known and observed to have conveyed and intimation of the death of the dear ones at a distance of thousands of miles.
A simple dream made Mr. J.B. Rhine,Director of Psychology at the Duke University to research in extra-sensory perception. The following story told by his most respected Science Professor while he was a graduate student turned him to get interested in the subject.
Our family was awakened late one night by a neighbour who wanted to borrow a horse and buggy to drive none miles to a neighbouring village. The man said apologetically that his wife had been awakened by a horrible dream about her brother who dreamt about her brother who lived there. It had so disturbed her that she insisted to drive over at once to see if she was well. He explained that she thought that she had seen her brother returned home, take his team to the barn unharness the animal and then go up into the hay-loft and shoot himself with a pistol. She saw him pull the trigger and roll over in the hay down a little incline into a corner. No reassurance could persuade her that she had a nightmare. My father put them the buggy (it was before the day of telephones) and then drove to her brother’s house. There they found his wife still waiting her husband’s return, unaware of any disaster.
On reaching the barn they found the horses unharnessed. They climbed the Lay-soft and there was the body on the spot the sister had dreamt. This pistol was lying in the hay. It seemed as through she had dreamed every detail with phto graphic exactness.
(New Frontiers of the mind by Rhina)Mrs. Catherine in her book , ‘The Nightside of Nature’ tells that about an incident occurring in Russia which was attested by the judicial authorities of Odessa in 1942. An old blind bagger live in that town. He became blind by wounds in a war, and was afterwards living by begging. By change, he found a little girl Powleska abonded by someone and she was adopted by that beggar who was led from door to door by her. One day she was suspected in a theft case and the police arrested her and kept her in a jail. It was reported immediately that the old man had disappeared and no one knew where he had gone, after three days of enquiry the curt asked the girl if she knew where her adopted father had gone and she emphatically replied that he had died. The Court felt surprised how she knew it scince she was guarded in the prison and the ld man was alive when she was arrested . she said to the magistrate , “I saw him killed’.
“Nonesense! You have not been out of prison.”
“I saw him all the same. He was murdered an hour after the police had taken me. I saw him struck with a knife.”
“Where wer you at that time !”
“I don’t know; I only know that I saw.”
“There is no reason to suppose such a thing. His body was not found.”
“Now . it will be found in the aquenduct.”
“Who killed him?”
“A woman Michael was walking very slowly after I had been taken from him. The woman came behind him with a knife in her hand. She threw a piece of grey stuff over his head and stuck him several times with the knife. Then she dragged his body to the aquenduct and thurst in.”
Immediately the police went there and found the dead body. On later trial it was found that a woman who was known as Catherine, formerly the wife of that dead man, killed him with the assistance of her new lover. It was reported that they denied first but confessed the guilt later on. The revelation caused such a sensation in Odessa that citizens crowded the court just to have a glimpse of the wonderful girl.
If you disbelieve both the above stories read Indian Express of Friday, the 13th April , 62.
Dark Shadows in M.P. , D.I.G.O. Hind. Strange thing which remained one that coming events cast their shadows are reported to have happened in the home of Mr.Inderjeet Johar D.I.G. of Police, Madhya Pradesh before he died on tragic circumstances on the night of April 6, when his Caamp 21 ½ miles from Koheing caught fire.
Mr.Johar’s wife was awakened from her sleep on that night by a terrible dream concerning her husband who was at that moment 1,500 miles away in the Nagaland. Shaken and feeling restless she telephoned the Inspector General of Police for reassurances. And the next day came the tragic news.
9. Soul has intuitive recognition. Even chairvogance had a nightmare. Tired and anxious, he retired late one night. Soon he began to dream. First there was a stillness and then he heard subdued sobs as if many people more weeping. He tried to find out the direction from which the sound came. Leaving the bet he went down stairs and heard the sobs still, though no mourners were visible. Mystified Lincoln went from the room to room but found no living being.
At last he went to the East Room where he saw a startling scene. As he entered he found a Catafolque on which rested a corpse wrapped in funeral vestments. Soldiers were stationed around it. There was a rush of people some gazing mournfully upon the corpse who face was covered & others weeping bitterly who is dead in the White House. Lincoln demanded of one of the soldiers.
“The President,” replied the soldier. Lincoln woke up and tried to forget the dream.
Within a few days the dream came true. The nation wept for the loss of the President.
Here is another case which was verified by Prof. Banerjee.
Miss Gina Beauchampa 23 years old secretary from Cheshire and her mother wer among the crowd of a holiday-makers. Chatting happily at Victoria coach station, London. They were waiting for their coach to take them to the Airport, Kent for their holiday flight to Costa Brava.
Suddenly Gina turned to her mother and said, “ I cann’t go. I know something going to happen.” Despite her mother’s pleadings , Gina stuck to her decision. Her disappointed mother carried on alone and Gina returned home. A few hours later Mrs.Beachampa’s plane crashed at Perpiguan in the south of France and she together with 82 passengers were killed.
Was this just a coincidence ?’ asks Prof. Banerjee, “was it just a chance?” If we compare this with thousands of similar cases on record, Gina’s behaviour was above and beyond normal sense. It was a case of definite example of mental functions of time and space.
10- Soul, is really speaking, Omniscient in nature. It is true that we are unable to point a single man who is omniscient but the fact that capacities differ, and in some cases we learn of some people possessing extra ordinary capacities , it may be assumed that at least a few of us can attain to that status by proper discipline Telepathy clairvoyance are also due to this attribute. Here are some cases of people possessing extra ordinary powers.
Human Computer. What is the fourth root of 220172100625? How many seconds are there in 38 years? How many inches are there in 17 miles 6 furlongs 210 yds 2 ft.and 9 inches? These are problems which will take mathematicians many minutes to answer. But R.Govindarajan of Coimbatore is able to answer them in second. He took 15 seconds to grapple with first problem and much less with others in are in a recent exhibition at Maduria.
Mr. Govindrajan had little formal education .His power seems to have been a gift of nature. He first became aware of it when he was nine years old. When scholastic education did not suit him, a psychologist advised him, to develop his faculty by himself.
(The Indian Express,Sept,2., 1967)Numerical Wizard. An accound of Western Russia can instantly determine the number of letters and words in a sentence, paragraph or book page, says Tass.
He was once asked to calculate the numbers of letter and words spoken in a running football commentary which was recorded on a tape. No sooner did the commentary said the last work than Mr. Chikvhvila gave the total. It took five hours to check the tape and Mr. Accountant’s total tallied perfectly.
He can also read whole paragraph backwords after hearing them once. His remarkable powers manifested themselves at the age of 13. Scientists believe that the calculating ability of such prodigies dimimish with time. But the accountant claims that with the passage of time, his calculating powers have improved.
(Indian Express, Aug. 26. 1967)X-Rays Eyes. An Eleven year old Soviet girl Vera Petrova can see through doors and walls with her skin. Her X ray sight was discovered when she asked her father why some one was crying in the next door, although she could hear no sobs.
Vera read a newspaper through three thick books, and recognised colours with her fingers, toes , shoulders and knee.
Medical experts who examined Vera found she had X ray sight only when her eyes were closed and her powers of perception were not concentrated elsewhere, but they admitted that science could not explain how the sight worked.
There are several allusions and hints in the Bible regarding the omniscient nature of soul.
i) For there is nothing hid which shall not be manifest, neither was anything kept secret but that it would come abroad. If a man have ears to hear let him hear, (Mark IV, 21-23)
ii) Be ye therefore perfect even as your father which is in heaven is perfect. (Mathew V, 48)
iii) Ye are Jods. (John X 34) iv) Ye are the lights of the world. (Mathew V, 14) 10. Soul is divine. A soul would be God if it is completely rid of all taints of Kalmic matter The embodied soul is so hopelelssly under the influence of this matter that its instincts are all perverted and it is incapable of realising what its nature is.
i) And know ye not that ye are temple of God and that spirit of God dwelleth in you.
(1.Cor.III-16)ii) For behold the kingdom of God is within you.
(Luke XVII-21)Jain Tirthankaras endowed with omniscience (Kewal Gyan) could relate details of not only their own but others past lives. Perhaps you do not credit such stories but what would you say when Prof. Banerjee tells us about a girl who recounted ten of such lives. The difference is that while in the cases that come to light today. Association of ideas play a prominent part in their concentration of mind an mediation play the major role.
Joey, a school girl in Pretoria, South Africa, began going to her other lives when she first learned to speak and to use a pencil. Her stories in words & drawings are regarded as childish fancies until recent months, when scientific investigations were undertaken to determine whether in fact, she had been reincarnated down through the years. The tale she told of her previous lives seems fantastic.
“Details of her earlier lives are accurate.” Says scientists.
Dinosaur chase. Joey has been interviewed by Prof. Arthur at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesberg, South Africa Joey’s father. Edward Michael, at first laughed at her talk. Now he listens seriously, so does her mother whp keeps a diary of what Joey’s says.
“Joey’s must have been two or three when she started telling the most incredible stories of what had happened to her.” Verwey reported.
“Before she could read or write she drew fashion of the pasd and historic scenes and objects used long ago.”
Talking about being chased into a mountain came by a dinosaur “bigger then a house”, Joey said, “our cave had only one entrance. It was too dangerous to have too many openings because the lions and tigers that slinked about at night could come in.
When the did, the next morning, there would be a pool of blood. Then we would know one of us had been caught. When she was very young, Joey made a drawing of a slave ship where she said, “She was held captive and of a palace where she was held in bondage. We, salves, were never allow to speak, if we did, our tongues were cut out.”
Sun God In the palace as a slave , Joey reported that they prayed to the Sun God shouting and dancing around in circles; crying out the name if Bala in front of a statue.
“The king was a terrible man; he had one wife with beautiful long hair. He got angry with her. A slave brought a Copper tray, washed and perfumed her hair. The king sent for me. I was scared I did not want to go.
A big man who looked like a man, who beat the rowers on the ship, took me and held me down on a block in a sort of courtyard. Another man with a long knife chopped my head off,”
The embodiments of Souls. According to Jainism a soul assumes five sorts of bodies.
1. Karman Sharira. This subtle body is made up of very five invisible particles of Karmik matter visible or perceptible only to the Omnisceint Lords. The effects of the different kinds of activities of the individual are preserved in the Sharira and it serves as the seed as well as the vehicle of rebirth; it constitutes as the nucleus of potential energy for the life to come.
2. Jaijes Sharira. That which is made up of luminious five particles of matter. It covers the soul with a halo of auspicious or inauspicious trills.
3. Audarka. Thisis an ordinary body of gross nature through which outer impression are gathered.
4. Variyaka. The body which the resident of heaven and hell possesses and which is ordinarily invisible to our normal vision.
5. Aharka is that which is possessed by very advanced munis or saint to visit their teachers or masters when there is any doubt.
Vedanta recognises only the first three. The first two bodies do not leave the souls throughout their mundance carecro and it is here that the elements of future development are preserved in the form of seed.
In the 33rd Chapter of Quran we read:-
“we formerly created man of a finer sort of clay and afterwards we placed him in the form of seed in a sure receptacle ; afterwards we made the seed coagulated blood and we formed the coagulated blood into a piece of flesh; then we formed the piece of flesh into bones and clothed them with flesh; then we reproduced the same by another creation.”
Here the expression ‘sure receptacle’ is sus-cepticle of sense only on the supposition that there is a subtle body inside the gross encasement of physical mater and that the body of ‘a five clay’ in some way corresponds to Karman-Sharira, while the sure receptacle which does not miscarry in the Sukshma-Sharira which contains the essence of individuality hence character in the form of seed-and which by entering the mother’s womb manufactures coagulated blood etc. The phrase “by another creation” refers most probably to the re-incarnation theory.
The use of guarded language which may be obivious to the wise but mystifying to the uninitiated by the Prophet of Africa, was due to the fact that he had to contact agisnt deep rooted prejudices of his time.
The outer body of matter is an organism made by the Soul itself by the mechanical operation of the forces residing in its two inner bodies namely Karman and the Taijasya. The use of such terms and phrases as ‘the physical encasement of matter’ the mortal coil’and the like is only permissible by way of metaphor and not in literal sense. The idea of the association of soul with its three bodis may be partially grasped by likening it in Oxygen and the matter Karman Sharira to Hydrogen which combine together to form water. If we now throw some combining water into the liquid formed by the fusion of these two kinds of gases we shall have an idea of the Taijesay Sharira. The position occupied by these inner bodies in relation to that of gross matter something is like that which would come into existence if we hold the coloured liquid in a sponge go tghat it would saturate every position of the sponge without becoming futed or united with t. The important distinction between the sponge and the physical body should not, however, be lost sight of, for a while the former is an independent article of the latter is organised by the soul.
Forces binding the Soul. The following eight types of Karmic forces effects the soul.
1. Jnanavorniya from Jnan=knowledge and avarna ( vkoj.k) a cover. That which acts as an obstruction to right knowledge.
2. Darsana Varniya from Darsana faith. That which acts as an obstruction to Right Vision.
3. Vedaniya: That which leads to the experience of pleasure and paid through the sense.
4. Mohaniya. It has two kinds
a)Darshan Mahaniya= From Darsan=Faith and Mahaniya= Infatuation hence the infatuation ranged against Right Faith and
b) Charitra Mohaniya= From Charitra= Conduct. That which present ones being upto one’s faith.
5. Ayah. Age longevity. That which determines the length of life.
6.Nama. That which determines the type of body.
7.Gotra. That which determines the surroundings family, descent, lincage and the like.
8. Antarya. From Antarya between and Aya to stand which prevents the soul, faculty of peace and happiness, spendour, benevolence and power being involved out in fullness.
The above eight kinds of Karmas are divisible into two types: the ghatia and the aghatia of which the former comprises the first; second, fourth and eight classes described alone and the latter comprises the remaining four.