Path to Siva: A Catechism for Youth

22 What Is the Nature of Our Soul?§


We inhabit a body that was once star dust, but our soul is a body of light. The chakras are windows of consciousness. The middle ones are along the spine. The lowest seven are in the legs & feet.§


Our soul is an immortal, spiritual being. The essence of the soul is Pure Consciousness and Absolute Reality. This essence is perfect, eternal and was never created. Visualize it as a light bulb covered by five layers of colored fabrics. These are our five bodies or sheaths. The physical body is our outer body of flesh and bones, which we need to function in this earthly world. Inside it is the pranic body, the sheath of energy, or prana, that flows through the physical body. Then we have the subtle or astral body. It is the sheath of ordinary thoughts, desires and emotions. Next is the mental or intellectual layer. It functions on the higher mental plane. Finally, we have the body of the soul. This is the body that evolves from birth to birth, that reincarnates into new outer sheaths and does not die when the physical body perishes. Gurudeva described it like this: “The body of the soul actually looks like a plastic body filled with light. You have seen mannequins with arms, legs, torso and head made completely out of transparent, neon-like plastic. If you were to put a light in such a mannequin, it would glow. This is what your soul body, your psyche, looks like.” Our soul body is neither male nor female and never dies. Within our subtle bodies we have chakras, twenty-one in all—colorful, spinning force centers. The seven lower chakras, those of fear, anger and the other lower, instinctive impulses, are located in the legs. The seven middle chakras are along the spine, and the highest seven, accessible only after Self Realization, are above the head. We also have an aura, radiating within and around us, whose colors change according to our thoughts and emotions. Once physical births have ceased, this soul body still continues to evolve in the heavenly worlds. We are not the physical body, mind or emotions. We are the eternal soul, atman—consisting of the radiant soul body and its essence, Pure Consciousness and Absolute Reality.§


GURUDEVA: Reverse your thinking about yourself. Feel that you come out of timelessness, causelessness, spacelessness. Visualize the pure radiant body of light, the being of the soul, the “I Am,” the “Watcher.”§