Monday, August 14, 2006

"WHEEL of 84"

The Journey of the SoulThe Vedas explain that the soul, known as the atma, may inhabit any of 8,400,000 general species of material bodies. The physical forms vary in complexity, beginning with the primitive microbes and amoebas, continuing on through the aquatic, plant, insect, reptile, bird, and animal species, and culminating in human beings and demigods.

In consequence of its own desires to enjoy matter, the atma continually journeys through these various bodies, on an endless voyage of births and deaths. The action of the mind is the prime force compelling the living entity to transmigrate from one body to another. The Gita explains, "Whatever state of being one remembers when he quits his body, that state of being he will attain without fail."

Our minds are constantly recording all of our thoughts and desires, and the totality of these memories floods our consciousness in the last moments of life. The nature of our thoughts at this critical juncture propels us into the appropriate physical body.

Thus the body we now occupy is an accurate physical projection of our state of mind at the time of our last death.The Bhagavad-gita explains, "The living entity, thus taking another gross body, obtains a certain type of eye, ear, tongue, nose, and sense of touch, which are grouped around the mind. He thus enjoys a particular set of sense objects."

According to the Vedas, a soul in a form lower than human automatically evolves to the next-higher species, ultimately arriving at the human form. But because the human being possesses freedom to choose between matter and spirit, there is a chance that the soul will descend again into the lower species.

The laws of karma are so arranged that if a human lives and dies with the animalistic mentality of a creature such as a dog, then in the next life he will be able to fulfill his doglike desires through the senses and organs of a dog. This is certainly an unfortunate occurrence, but such a fate is a definate possibility for a person immersed in ignorance. The Gita declares, "When he dies in the mode of ignorance, he takes birth in the animal kingdom."So the soul in the body of an animal may once have inhabited a human form and vice versa.

Although a soul may successively occupy plant, animal, and human bodies, its intrinsic nature remains the same. Because the soul is pure spiritual energy, it cannot be altered in any way by matter. Bhagavad-gita explains that the soul is "immutable and unchangeable." It is only the bodily covering, with its particular combination of mind and senses, that temporarily restricts or releases the conscious energy of the soul.

We have been blessed to have been given the Gift of a Human body, this incarnation!" Use it, or loose it, as an old saying goes!"

Blessings!
Marked Elect

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