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The Nature of the Soul
The Soul is Indestructible
As soon as scientists come to know of any substance they want to study its physical and chemical properties. Thus Lord Shri Krishna explains to Arjuna that the soul is not made up of matter like solids, liquids, or gases."The soul cannot be cut to pieces by any weapons; it cannot be burned by fire; it cannot be dried by wind; nor can it be moistened by water." [BG 2.23]
The Soul is an Individual
Each soul is a separate individual with separate consciousness. You are aware of your body, mind, intelligence and false ego. I cannot perceive your headache and you cannot know what I am thinking. But God is aware of every particle of this creation. [Read purport to BG2.12, BG15.7]
The Soul has form
The spirit soul is not some 'impersonal light' or 'void' as some people wrongly think. The soul is a beautiful personality whose body is made up of sat-cit-ananda (eternity-bliss-knowledge).
Matter is formless - Spirit soul gives form to Matter
Matter in itself has no form. Matter acquires a form only when a spirit soul enters it. For example, if Matter Soul + Matter Matter you take a plain cloth it may be formless, but if you put your finger inside then it assumes a form. When you remove your finger then it loses its form. Similarly, matter (the eight elements that constitute the body) assumes a form when the soul enters it. At death, when the soul leaves the body, the body decomposes, disintegrates and loses its form. So matter is formless, only the spirit gives form to matter. A table or chair may have a form, although it is dead matter. Matter can assume form only when a soul manipulates it. For example, a table has been given a form by a soul (carpenter).
The Soul Is Eternal
"For the soul there is never birth nor death. Nor having once been, does he ever cease to be. He is unborn, eternal, ever-existing, undying and primeval. He is not slain when the body is slain." [BG2.20]
The Soul has a form of Eternity (sat)- Knowledge (cit)-Bliss (ananda)
The soul comes from the Kingdom of God and he has a spiritual body of eternity, knowledge and bliss to relate with the Lord. But when the soul desires to become an independent enjoyer, he is dispatched to the material world, where he is entrapped in a material body. Why do we suffer? Because the 'sat-cit-ananda' soul is entrapped in an 'asat-acit-nirananda' (temporary-ignorant-miserable) body, there is a great amount of incompatibility that causes suffering. We all can easily see that we are seeking knowledge by going to schools and colleges. We want to live forever, and in order to do that we go to a doctor to set right the bodily problems, and also we always try to protect the body from all possible dangers. We want to increase happiness unlimitedly and put a full stop to all pains. Our advancement in the use of modern comforts shows that we want to make life always enjoyable and without any sufferings or worries. These three aspirations can be fulfilled when one realizes, "I am not the body, I am the soul."
The Soul is situated in the region of the Heart
The soul pervades the body with consciousness as a lamp fills a room with light. The lamp that gives light to the entire room may be in one corner of the room. Similarly the soul is situated in the region of our heart. The soul is not removed during heart transplantation, as he is spiritual. For example, when the stepney / radiator of a car is changed, nothing happens to the driver.
Similarly one heart (which is just like a radiator pumping Mood) may be replaced by another, but that does not affect the s°ul. If somebody undergoes a heart transplant, do you see his Hitrinsic behavior or nature change after the operation? No.Thus the soul, the owner of the body does not change when any transplant is done.
The Size of the Soul
The Upanishads and the Shrimad Bhagavatam describe the size of the soul (seed form): "If you divide the tip of the hair into 100 parts, and if you further divide one of those parts into 100 parts - that 1/10,000 part of the tip of the hair is the size of the soul." (Svetasvatara Upanishad 5.9) This is the size of the soul in the seed form, in which he wanders in the material universe. But the soul has an original, beautiful, spiritual sat-cit-ananda form in the spiritual world, which is known as svarupa (spiritual constitutional position). The soul has an eternal sweet relationship with God in this svarupa.