Body and soul

We may call the body a temple. Inside the temple is the shrine, the heart. Within the shrine is the deity, the soul. Now, let us speak only of the soul and the body, since that is your question. Body and soul are like a house and its owner. The soul is the owner and the body is the house. The soul and the body are complementary. Without the soul, without the owner, the house is useless. The soul works inside the body, as well as with the body, through the body and for the body-consciousness. Again, without the body, the soul will have no place to live. It will not be able to manifest its qualities on earth. When the owner is there and the body is in perfect condition, then the message of the soul can be revealed and fulfilled.

We have to know what the soul can offer us and what the body can offer us. The soul can offer us realisation; the body can offer us manifestation. For its manifestation, the soul needs the body. For its realisation, the body needs the soul. The body offers its capacity in service; the soul offers its capacity in meditation. In this way they go together perfectly.

The earth is the field of realisation and, at the same time, the field of manifestation. God-realisation can be achieved only here on earth, and not in other spheres, not in other worlds or on other planets. Those who care for God-realisation have to accept a human body and come into this world. Again, it is only on earth and through the physical body that the soul can manifest its own divinity, which is the infinite Peace, infinite Light, infinite Bliss. The body needs the soul; the soul needs the body. For the realisation of the highest and deepest Truth, the body needs the soul; for the manifestation of the highest and deepest Truth, the soul needs the body.

If the soul does not try to inspire and illumine the body, the body will remain blind, ignorant, obscure and impure. And without the body’s cooperation the soul will remain unmanifested, almost useless. Often we see that the soul is crying for realisation and manifestation through the body, but the body is not responding to it. The body may be physically strong, but if it is not aspiring for the inner light and truth which the soul can offer it, then the soul cannot fulfil itself.

Body and soul are not inseparable, but complementary. The soul can exist without the body, although it cannot manifest itself. The body cannot exist for more than a few hours without the soul. For their total mutual fulfilment, body and soul need each other.

From:Sri Chinmoy,Beyond Within — A collection of writings 1964-1974, Agni Press, 1975
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