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The Mirror Of The Self: [13] The Internal Trip

Published: 06.02.2009

The Internal Trip

There are three different branches of our nervous system - the sympathetic nervous system, the para-sympathetic: nervous system and the central nervous system. The movement of consciousness in the central nervous system is known as the internal trip. One is required to work for a living, and for this one must go out. For moving outwards, there are two ways - the sympathetic and the para-sympathetic, in the terminology of Hatha-Yoga, these are called the vital currents of ida and pingla. Forgoing inwards, consciousness must move from ida and pingla to the central nervous system, the sushumna or the spinal cord. The movement of consciousness within the backbone is called the internal trip, and its movement to the right and left of the backbone constitutes external trips.

Internal Trip: Two Aspects

There are many aspects of a particular subject and one must consider all of them. Two important words of Jain metaphysics are dravya (empirical) and bhava (transcendental). The well-being of consciousness in the spinal cord, is one aspect of the internal trip, and it may be called the empirical aspect. But the transcendental aspect is far more significant. Therefore, along with the empirical-aspect, one must also consider the transcendental aspect. The internal trip means - right vision. Without right vision, there can be no internal trip. This constitutes the transcendental aspect.

Introvertive Soul: Internal Trip

There are three kinds of souls: the extrovertive soul, the introvertive soul and the Supreme Soul.

Being introvertive means entry into the internal world. The sojourn of an introvertive soul becomes the internal trip. The extrovertive soul is stuck up with the body and material objects; it is absorbed in gross things. An extrovert is always preoccupied with others. He becomes agitated by criticism and is puffed up with praise. He is ever caught up in the web of reaction to other people's conduct towards himself. "That man did this or that to me!" All this reaction constitutes a false approach.

What Does Right Vision Mean?

We have so limited the meaning of right and wrong that we find it difficult to grasp their true significance. It has been said that he who knows the nine real entities [viz., soul, non-soul, merit, demerit, cause of influx (of karman), stoppage of cause of influx (of karman), dissociation (of karman), bondage (of karman) and emancipation], he who knows the deity, the guru and religion, is possessed of right vision; he who does not, is caught in false vision. This, of course, is true, but it has been made too gross. In fact, the right vision means to bide constantly in the soul, be moved lor ever by the indwelling spirit.   To expect another to resolve one's problems would be a case of false vision. How can a man who shirks self-exertion be possessed of right vision. Mere repetition of some words cannot be holistic vision.  We must rise above ritualistic behaviour and practise the maxim, "I am myself responsible for my joy and suffering; I am the maker of my pleasure and pain." Without such practice and the realization thereof, it would be a case of blind and meaningless repetition. For such a realisation one must rise above custom and live an inward life; one must undertake the internal trip. Without undertaking the internal trip, such a realization is not possible.

Distinguishing The Flaws of Mind From The Nature Of The Soul

To have a right vision means to be an introvert. Introversion means that a man clearly perceives: "This is the nature of my soul and this a flaw in my consciousness!" Where does the flaw in consciousness operate and where the true nature of the soul asserts itself - the man who sees them clearly is an introvert. Most of us are happy or unhappy on account of others. This dependence upon others for our joy and sorrow is fraught with danger. As long as we look upon others as the cause of our pleasure and pain, we shall never come to know our soul. Until one establishes contact with one's soul or the Supreme Spirit, one keeps wholly dependent upon others, and one is then confronted by many problems.

One Can Only Rely On Oneself

The celebrated poet, Pt. Jagannath was greatly esteemed at the Royal Court of Delhi. He was recognised to be the decisive factor behind every move. In spite of being so powerful, however, the great poet was wholly dependent upon others. With a revolution of the wheel of time, he found himself exiled. Dependence on others became a problem itself. He was obliged to leave India. The King of Nepal welcomed him, offering him a salary of one lakh of rupees per month. Imagine the value of a rupee of those days! Yet, the poet's mind was not at rest. He had come to realise the consequences of being dependent upon others. Someone asked him how he was getting along and whether he was content. The poet answered, "Only God or the ruler of Delhi can fulfil my inmost wishes. The offerings of the Nepal king can only serve to provide me with salt and vegetables!"

In The Direction Of Self-Realisation

We can thus say that our soul alone can fulfil our cherished desires. Whatever trust we may place in the empirical, until we establish contact with the soul, our deepest longings will remain unfulfilled. To establish contact with the soul is to realise the transcendental. Without such contact, the transcendental is away. Mere empiricism is dangerous. Where there is only empiricism, there can be no true religious order. Politics would be there and the rule of brute force, the more efficient tyrannizing over others, the terror, the fear, the disorderly riot and disruption are all due to the dominance of politics. Where dharna rules, there will be a gradual development of self-realization. To move in the direction of self-realization is to be introvertive or possessed of an inner soul.

The Utter Necessity Of The Internal Trip

Until we come to have a right vision, until our conduct in life is right and proper, extroversion would prevail. Whether it is our failings or virtues, we must not appraise them with other people's yardsticks. On the contrary, we must witness our failings and virtues through an act of self-observation. For this we will have to forsake outward roaming and go deep into ourselves, we will have to become introverts. For introversion, it is necessary to undertake the inner voyage. The day we realize this truth, we shall enter a new world altogether.


3rd Edition 1995

Jain Vishva Bharati Institute
Ladnun -341 306 (Rajasthan)

Muni Dhananjay Kumar (Hindi)
Muni Mahendra Kumar (English)

Translated by:
Late Prof. R.K. Seth

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Page glossary
Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Bhava
  2. Body
  3. Consciousness
  4. Delhi
  5. Dravya
  6. Fear
  7. Guru
  8. Hatha-Yoga
  9. Ida
  10. Internal Trip
  11. Karman
  12. Lakh
  13. Pingla
  14. Soul
  15. Sushumna
  16. Wheel of Time
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