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i came against this forum topic - Is there a difference between mental and spiritual?


It is an interesting question which must have crossed ones mind at least sometime. i would attempt to answer it.

At the very outset let me negate all paranormal & psychic phenomenon. They belong to the mental realm & are a serious hindrance to the spiritual path, so we are told by the sages.

WE know the position of Advaita very well who would say that in truth there is one existence known as Brahmn ( Absolute) & all else is an appearance or Maya. So this division is arbitrary and based on our limited world view. Though this is there absolute stated position, they do give a concession to our ignorance & acknowledge the 24 principals of Sankhya the philosophy of the Yogies. Now as per this, on the scale of microcosm (individual) first springs the principal of Ego (Ahankara) and later on develops the discriminative intellect (Buddhi) & mind (Man). The pure I being the nearest to spirit has the greatest portion of divine qualities. Some would say that like the Sun reflecting in water, the Atman (Self or Brahmn) is reflected in Chitta (Mindstuff) as I. So this is considered Spiritual. Shankara in his masterly treatise Vivekchudamani (crown jewel of discrimination), says that this I shining in the Buddhi(intellectual Sheath or body) is the only real and should be meditated upon.

We could also say that all is matter or energy. Starting from this premise it can be shown that our body consists of the gross (Sthul) energy and is called the Annamaya Kosh (body of food). The other body which is of finer substance is the Pranmaya kosh (body of breath). Finer than this is the mind (manomaya kosh). Finer than this is the intellect (vigyanmaya kosh) and the finest is the soul or I which is considered to be more fine than anything else and atomic in size (anu) residing in the heart. This is the spiritual entity.