This fragile body
For mind and soul.
We cannot afford to neglect our bodies, even if we recognize that we must not identify with them exclusively. Actually, in our search for our true selves, our physical existence is the best place to start. We can alter our lives by how we eat and exercise, and we can expedite our search by keeping ourselves healthy. If we are free of physical blockages and pain, we can identify our inner selves much better.
In the search for the mind and soul, it is wise to understand that the body is not the true self, but it is also wise to maintain the body. There should be neither denial nor mortification of the flesh, but it takes a wise person to both maintain the body and look beyond it.
I am not this fragile body.
We are not our bodies. This may seem an odd assertion. After all, there is no other object on this earth that we know more intimately. Why should we not identify with it?
What is there about our bodies that is tangible? Of course it has substance, but how do we account for volition? A corpse is just as tangible as a living being, and yet no one would mistake the two. Something mysterious accounts for the differences between a live and a dead body. Something animates us.
It is the mind that directs the energy. But what of the mind can we call definite? It is like a flickering flame : At no point can we determine its exact contours. The more closely we examine ourselves, the more subtle distinctions become. Everything becomes quite indistinct. We cling stubbornly but futilely to the impression that we could find something in the reduction of things.
It’s all quite confusing. But one thing is certain : I am not this fragile body.