[Advaita-l] Cotard Syndrome and Brahman Realisation

Rajaram Venkataramani rajaramvenk at gmail.com
Sat Jun 9 00:46:36 CDT 2012

I am only thinking aloud taking the question posed by Sri Rajaram as the
> 'prashna bIjam'.  Members are welcome to point out errors in my
> thinking/expression.

It is perhaps easier to find a needle in a hay stack.

I think the mind is clearly distinct from the body (according to the
sastras) as you said. I don't quite understand Sri Vidyasankar's position
on mind - body connection. If his position is that mind is distinct from
the body but when in it remains in the body it is totally connected as long
as there is attachment, I can't agree more. The actions of the mind create
measurable effect all over the body - the brain, heart and practically
every part of he body. The body also produces effects on the mind.

The modern scientific opinion that the mind is a product of the brain
function cannot be right in my opinion. Even Roger Penrose, who agrees with
the current scientific paradigm that the mind is a product of the neural
activity argues that there need to be advances in mathematical physics to
explain the mind. The current physics falls short is his opinion based on
good logic.

Ian Stevenson spent a life time documenting, critically and with high
integrity, thousands of cases of reincarnation based on memory of past
lives. If we accept reincarnation based on such verbal testimony or
sastras, then we need to accept that mind is distinct from the body.

Knowledge is characterised by renunciation. Renounciation is not possible
without the right mindset and body. So it seems tattva jnana  alters
neurological constitution. But I think this alteration is easily
reversible. The jnani can assume the conditioning of a king or a mendicant,
which won't be possible if jnana shapes the brain in a particular way

But I think repetition of mantras, deep meditation etc. semi-permanently
shapes the brain. It seems similar to building the body in a gym but if you
stop the practice  you lose the muscles over time.

If the jnani is able to witness his own insanity, if it occurs, then
witnessing part (seer) has to be disconnected from acting part (seen).  Who
is the witness? I think the mind sees the dysfunction of the brain. I am
happy to be created.

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