What is mind and where is the mind located?


Most of us think we know our own minds, we know what is mind and where it is located. But in reality, most of us do not have a clear concept of the mind and also do not know where the mind is located in the body. To awaken a little interest in this post, let me tell you that the mind does not mean our brain. In Sanskrit, the mind is called Mann. Some people connect Mann to soul or heart because soul reside in heart. However, here Mann does not mean dil , soul or heart. Then what is mind?

What is mind?

Mind is a part of our subtle body. It is not a part of our physical body like the brain and heart. However, it exhibits the properties of both. It has emotions like the heart. It has intelligence like the brain but at the same time, it is not tangible like these two. It is a subtle element.

Let me be more precise. The energy which keeps us alive is our soul – the atman. Our atman is covered by five sheaths or layers named Panchakosh. These are:

1. Annamaya Kosh: our food body or the physical body which is seen.

2. Pranamaya kosh: our prana or the breath

3. Manamaya kosh: the manas or mind

4. Vijnyanmaya Kosh: consists of our higher intelligence

5. Anandamaya Kosh: the supreme Bliss

Thus our whole body, including the manifest and the unmanifest, is divided into three parts:

gross body, subtle body, and the casual body.

-   Our gross body consists of Annamaya Kosh and Pranamaya Kosh.

-   Subtle body consists of Manamaya Kosh and Vijnyanmaya Kosh.

-   Our casual body consists of the Anandamaya Kosh.

Now it must be clear to you what is mind when I say the mind is a part of subtle body. Mind is nothing but consciousness, a feeling, a sensation. It has exemplary memory which accumulates generation over generation, one birth over the other. 

According to Yogic system human Mind is composed of 16 parts, which fall into 4 fundamental parts:

- Budhhi (intellect)

- Ahamkara (identity)

- Manas (memory)

- Chitta (cosmic intelligence)

Where is the mind located?


The mind is a part of the manamaya Kosh. The other parts of Manamaya Kosh being, the five sensory organs taste (tongue), smell (nose), vision (eyes), hearing (ear), and touch (skin).

Just as the panchmahabhutas (The five vital elements), the Tridoshas (The three humors) are not localized but are distributed all over the body. Similarly, The mind is not located in one particular place in the body. It is spread all over the layer of intelligence, the Manmaya kosha.

Every cell of our body has memory. It knows all the metabolic and chemical processes. That means we can find the mind in every cell. It is so connected with the physical body that we start assuming it to be a part of it. It will not be an exaggeration if we say that the mind covers our physical body and lot more than that. 

Let us take few examples:

1. Rub your hands for 30-40 seconds. Where do you feel the sensation first? 
The answer is – your palms. So, in that instant, the mind generates in your palms.

2. Somebody calls you from behind and you turn instantly. Where did you feel the sensation first? 
The answer is – your ears. So, in that situation, the mind generates in your ears.

3. When you are stressed, you will feel the sensation in your head. So the mind generates in your head.

4. You feel sad because of a break-up. You feel the sensation, the ache somewhere closer to your heart. In this situation, your mind generates first in your heart.

So in any part of your body, where you feel sensation, mind is generated. That sensation is called the mind. 

It is not only about the gross (physical) body, but also about the subtle body layering the gross body.

There must have been a few instances in your life when you feel that as soon as a particular person enters the room, you start feeling some negative vibes filled in that room. That is because your subtle body felt a sensation. At that instant (moment), The mind generated is not in your physical body but the subtle, unmanifest body. 

The gross body is the manifest physical body, which most of us think to be the only proof of us being existing, but it is only a part of our whole existence. 

 Thus we can say that Mind is an instrument to direct the consciousness of the soul towards the Brain and through the Brain, all over the body. Its primary function is interacting between the gross body and the soul.

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