Viveka and vairagya are the two prime factors that develop buddhi, and all Yoga practices, notably Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi, develop buddhi.
Yoga and Vedanta emphasize cultivating the #Buddhi, our higher intelligence. Yet what is the buddhi, and how do we cultivate it?
Buddhi means awakened perception. It is related to the term Buddha or enlightened, but has a long history in Sanskrit.
Our ordinary mind looks outward to the external world as the reality and our physical body as our true identity. This gets it caught in the realm of impermanence, Maya, duality, birth, death and sorrow.
The outer mind is certainly helpful and necessary in dealing with the practical affairs of life, which it organizes in terms of name, form, number and measurement. It is the basis of technology. Without it, we would be very limited in our knowledge of the world.
However, the outer mind cannot perceive the inner reality, our true Self of Pure Consciousness (#Atman), beyond name and form, birth and death. Nor can it perceive that same reality behind the world of nature, which manifests the Infinite and Eternal (#Brahman). Its outer orientation blinds it to the inner reality unless we complement it with an inner vision as the buddhi provides.
Yet, we all have a sense of the infinite, eternal and immortal. We all sense something within us beyond the body and the material world and don’t want to die. Religion and spirituality reflect this, though often in a limited manner.
Developing The Buddhi
Two prime factors develop buddhi. These are #viveka and #vairagya. Viveka is the ability to discern the eternal essence behind the transient factors of life. Vairagya is detached from outer names and forms and no longer seeking happiness in the eternal world. The Yoga Sutras emphasizes these as the basis for Samadhi and Self-realization.
All the practices of Yoga, notably Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi, the inner Yoga develop buddhi. Its development is the essence of Vedanta as introspection and Self-inquiry.
All #Sattv-increasing practices, starting with the Yamas and Niyamas of Yoga, develop it, as it is the power of Sattva in our minds.
Unfortunately, today no schools, including institutes of higher education, teach us how to develop the buddhi. They remain focused on the outer mind. Because of the lack of buddhi’s inner intelligence, we do not have the discernment and detachment to use our new technology from a place of inner intelligence.
We all need to cultivate our Buddhis today to develop this inner understanding of reality. All Vedic and yogic disciplines help us to do this. In your sadhana, studies or education, please make sure to cultivate the buddhi, not simply the outer mind or the ego. Buddhi is latent within all of us but needs the proper practices to truly manifest.