It is an irony that the right vision arising from a proper
understanding of the dichotomy between the body and the
atma evades the grasp of many, though this forms the
essence of all Vedantic teaching, pointed out Swami
Paramasukananda in a discourse.
Spiritual sadana is to know the truth about an individual’s
standing in the external world with which he has to interact
constantly. An individual who sees himself as a male or a
female, a father or son, wife or husband, employee or
employer, ruler and a subject etc. has no doubt about the fact that he/she is a human being. But when it comes to the
matter of the identity of the self, except for a few realised
souls, the prevailing tendency is to see the self as the body
rather than the atma.
All beings are compelled to interact with the external
world with the help of the body through the senses, mind
and intellect. Even sanyasis who have renounced worldly life have to deal with the world in one form or another.
But a realised person has no doubt that his real self is the
atma and not the body. He knows the atma as the subtle
presence in the body and of its nature as the essence of
sat-chit-ananda. He sees the relationship between the body
and the atma clearly — the body as a mere instrument that is able to function because of the atma and the atma as
independent of the body.
He does not hold any ownership over the body and knows
that whatever selfhood is derived from the body mind
complex is insubstantial. He is always aligned to the atma
which is free and pure. He is never perturbed by the
vicissitudes he may have to face in his lifetime.