World by Kevin Dooley
World by Kevin Dooley

I’ve spoken before about three-worlds models like physical, mental, and spiritual. Or the Gayatri version. (I favour a 7 worlds model, the koshas.)

I’ve also talked about the 3 aspects of consciousness model: seer, seeing, and seen. I illustrate this here.

Another variation on the first is the Adi’s. Adi means beginning with, original, or everything.

1) Adi-Atma: the field of consciousness or Atman, the cosmic Self. This is composed of the 3 aspects of consciousness above. The Atma Kosha.

2) Adi-Deva: the field of creation arising from consciousness, the laws of nature, the devas. Their field is the subtle koshas.

3) Adi-Bhuta: Bhuta is the components, relating to Bhuur and Bhuvar, the gross worlds. Also, the gross koshas. The Mahabhuta are the 5 primary elements.

(Bhuta also refers to that which exists or is manifest, but this is a more materialist view. The sense of existing arises from consciousness aware of itself, aware that it is. )


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  1. Judith

    I have suspected for some time now that there are many more than 5 primary elements, that of course is depending how you want to define the word ‘element’. For example, I consider what I term the ‘life force’ or simply just Life an element since it seems indeed as elementary to the ‘purpose’ and even ‘meaning’ of that which is manifested . Actually, in my opinion, we have not yet properly defined the concept of Life which is why we have not yet discovered it anywhere else in the universe let alone in our own solar system.

    If fire which gives light is an element, and light as photons have no mass, then why not Life as a manifestation of Divine Consciousness itself not be considered as a primary ‘element’ in your 3 or the 7 or whatever number of worlds ? Light, Life, and Spirit all seem to be mysteriously connected to what we term divine.

    1. Hi Judith

      Yes, Life force or prana is fundamental but it’s not an “element” in the classic sense. Some people experience the layers of creation becoming in spirals, each cycle of density adding the next bhuta or element. It’s prana that drives that.

      From a science standpoint, I’d agree. But if you experience prana directly, and its precursor shakti, then it’s very clear what it is. Shakti is an expression of Divinity. Light is also a quality of Divinity, however it’s a much more subtle kind of light that the physical spectrum. We first experience it as the light of consciousness. Spirit is a more generalized term that has various meanings.

      In the model of elements, it’s not so much that fire gives us light but that fire is the object side, sight is the subjective mechanism, and light is the intermediary.

      In some ways, counting the worlds or layers is a bit like asking how many colours are there in a rainbow. Many layers have layers within themselves also.

    2. As a followup, Judith, Warren’s comment below reminded me of an old post where I explored Sevenness. The last two “elements” that correspond to the last 2 senses are not manifest and those senses are non-local.

    1. Hi Sharon
      Yes, spin is one of the features that expresses the quality of a particle. A particle comes out of attention localizing a wave function. Spin comes out of the motive force of the attention that is localizing the wave. Quality of attention > quality of the particle.

      This leads me to think the spin type is more related to the guna, but there is more than 5 guna combos…

  2. Warren

    After reading the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali for months prior, MMY asked us what the “10 sister fingers milked them” (soma), meant. I volunteered “the 5 senses of perception and the 5 organs of action”, and MMY nodded, so the number 5 keeps popping up…

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