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The Mental Being

The Mental Being represents the individual aspect of the universal mental or ideational plane. The cosmic nature of that reality is scaled down to the mental body, the physical embodiment of thought, and in turn progresses further down the scale of gradation of consciousness, becoming increasingly rigidified. These various substages (physical of Mental and so on) have been very well described by Theon, Sri Aurobindo, Ouspensky and Bennett, and other esoteric psycholgists. At the Physical Mental Subplane level all that is left of the original thought-archetypes or ideation forms are physical-brain thoughtforms.

Mental BodyThe mental being also corresponds to an individual subtle body, the "Mental Body" or third energy body of Barbara Brennan's sequence of seven energy bodies. There are many other equivalent descriptions of the "mental body" found throughout Theosophical and New Age literature.

The Objective attribute of this plane is harder to attune to, but would presumably correspond to a strata of elemental forces; perhaps certain more limited "devic" forces of New Age and Theosophical lore may go here. These forces are further removed then the familiar "devas" and "elementals", as the mental subplane is less closely connected to the physical (hence philosophies such as Cartesian Dualism, based on the difficulty of reconciling the two). It may well be that what Steven Guth calls the "gnomes" that live inside computers (these terms should be understood metaphorically, not literally) originate here. Certainly the rise of the noosphere on Earth was a splendid opportunity for mental forces to embody themselves more integrally in the material dimension.

Mental of Physical of Physical subdegree Chakra Sri Aurobindo
based on "Planes and Parts of Being"
(Letters on Yoga vol. 1, pp.326ff)
Gurdjieff / Ouspensky
(3 centers and sub-centers)
Carl Jung
(4 Ego-types)
Spiritual of Mental Body Sahasrara Pure Thinking / Higher Thinking Intellectual part of Thinking Center ? n/a
Mental of Mental Body Ajna Thinking Mind Intellectual part of Thinking Center Thinking Type
Feeling of Mental Body Vishuddha / Akasha Dynamic Mind n/a n/a
Feeling of Mental Body Anahata / Air Externalizing Mind Emotional part of Thinking Center Intuition Type
Willing of Mental Body Manipura / Fire Externalizing Mind Emotional part of Thinking Center n / a
Willing of Mental Body Swadhisthana / Water Externalizing Mind Emotional part of Thinking Center Feeling Type
Physical of Mental Body Muladhara / Earth Physical Mind Moving part of Thinking Center Sensation Type

I n t e g r a l Y o g a

(individual and cosmic transformation)

Aspect Outer being (Transitional) Inner Being (Transitional) Realization Divinization
Spiritualization Divinization/
Evolving Divine Soul
Exoteric Postmaterialism Gnosis/
Feeling ego-shadow (I-It) duality
I-Thou Empathy
Body Physical

note: the above represents a simplistic linear interpretation only; in fact all these stages interact and overlap. Rarely do all these levels develop at the same time, and the Integral/Divine Realization encompasses all of them.

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content by M.Alan Kazlev
mental aura artwork from Barbara Brennan, Hands of Light, © Bantam Books
page uploaded 8 September 2001, last modified, and relocated 16 June 2005; last modified 21 July 2009