Friday, January 6, 2017


“Desire is a mode of the emotive mind. It has got a power of externalizing the mind. Desire is the fuel; thought is the fire. The thought-fire is kept up by the desire-fuel.”

“…the endless chain is welded out of three component, desire, thought and activity. A desire stimulates a thought; a thought embodies itself in an act.”

~ Swami Sivananda 

Swami Sivananda states clearly that behind the thoughts are desires. Desire is what stimulates fantasy and thoughts and propels us to action in order to fulfill the desire.

As you see, Swami Sivananda says also that desire is made of the emotive mind, i.e. that desire's nature is emotional. From my investigation about the nature of desire and ego I found that all negative or lower emotions are only modifications of desire. Desire modifies as anger, fear, impatience, agony, jealousy, depression, like, dislike etc. in the same way that the water can assume the form of rain, snow, ice, moisture, steam, cloud etc..Moreover I found that desire and the sense 'the body is me' are identical, i.e. desire is the ego, the ego is desire.   


Although most psychologists and spiritual teachers claim that thoughts cause the emotions, what happens is exactly the opposite. The emotions cause the thinking process.

Thus, what we think mostly is based on what we feel.

If fear is manifested we have fearful thoughts, if anger is expressed we have angry thoughts, if gluttony is manifested we think about food etc., if sexual lust is expressed we have lustful thoughts and so on.

The emotions and the desires (which nature is also emotional) can be triggered and activated by a thought or a sensory input.  Once the desire or the emotion is activated then the whole process of thinking is based on that desire/emotion.

Thoughts are used by the ego in order to experience a sensation, an emotion, a pleasure or happiness. Desire and emotions are translated into thoughts by the mental vital* (Sri Aurobindo).

Desire, thought and action are the three components of Samsara. Desire using thinking compels us to action. The result of action in general can be pain, suffering, happiness or pleasure. We feel attracted to pleasurable, pleasant and happy experiences and we feel dislike, aversion and repulsion towards painful or unpleasant experiences.

Our actions are motivated by desire, emotions and feelings. Actions and thoughts without feeling, sensation or emotion are meaningless. Only philosophical and scientific thinking can function beyond emotion but even in this case the thinking is sustained by a motive or aspiration which can be the joy of discovery, creativity etc.

However thoughts and emotions are linked and function together. Emotions (or desires) empower thoughts and thoughts empower emotions in a vicious circle.

Thoughts and emotions subside temporarily when our desire or our need is satisfied.

the vital mind* : According Aurobindo the vital is the life-force acting in its own nature, impulses, emotions, desires, ambitions, etc., having as their highest centre what we may call the outer heart of emotion, while there is an inner heart where are the higher or psychic feelings and sensibilities, the intuitive yearnings and impulses of the soul.

The vital proper has four parts: 

1. The mental vital which gives a mental expression by thought, speech or otherwise to the emotions, desires, passions, sensations and other movements of the vital .
2. The emotional vital which is the seat of various feelings such as, love, joy, sorrow hatred and the rest.
3. The central vital which is the seat of the stronger vital longings, and reactions e.g. ambition, pride, fear, love of fame, attractions repulsions, desires, passions of various kinds and the field of many vital energies.
4. The lower vital which is occupied with desires and emotions such as make the greater party of the daily life e.g. food desire, sexual desire, small likings and dislikings, vanity, quarells, anger at blame, little wishes of all kind and a numberless host of other things.

Their respective seats are:
1. Mental vital the region from the throat to the heart.
2. Emotional vital its seat is the outer heart and the inner heart behind it it is related with the soul.
3. The central vital has as its seat the region from the heart to navel.
4. The lower vital below the navel.

We must not confuse the mind with the vital although the vital has a mind element transfused in it. Mind and vital are mixed up on the surface of the consciousness, but they are quite separate forces in themselves.

The mental vital is a sort of mediator between vital emotion, desire, impulsion, etc and the mind. It expresses the desires, emotions, feelings, passions, ambitions, possessive and active tendencies of the vital and throws them into mental .- the pure imaginations or dreams of greatness, happiness, etc. in which men indulge are one peculiar form of the mental vital. It is through the mental vital that the vital passions, emotions, impulses, desires, rise up and get into the buddhi (intellect) and either cloud it or distort it.