Bhagavagd Gita - Session 23- Track 2305

Now, what is mind and what is intellect, what is the distinction between the two? Mind is supposed to be the 6th sense, in other words the sense, which coordinates all the senses. We know that there are 5 senses: the sense of hearing, the sense of touch, the sense of sight, the sense of taste, and the sense of smell: these are the 5 senses. Now, these 5 senses are basically specialisations of ‘the’ sense, which is called manas: so, manas is called the 6th sense because normally we feel that we have experience, individual experience of sound, of touch, of smell, of taste, of sight; we feel we understand it quite well; they seem to be visible, they seem to be capable of being caught in our sensations, but manas is not like that. And yet when you examine the psychology of our sensations, and ask ourselves: do we really understand what is touch? Do we really understand what is smell? What is the vibration that we call smell? And what is the vibration that we call sound? What is the vibration that we call touch? If I am asleep and somebody touches me can I understand what is touch unless I am awakened? And when I am awakened means than something else than touch which happens: awakening is something connected with the mind. Unless the mind becomes awakened, I will not understand what is touch at all. If I am asleep and somebody even speaks loudly, I will not hear it. What is the reason? The sense organ which is called the ear, which is the vehicle of hearing is present; but because something in me which is called the mind is very far removed from the sense organ, it has retire into the hall of rest, therefore even when there is a sensation, the sensation is not cognised; therefore Indian psychology says that all sensations are actually as invisible as the mind; just as mind is invisible, similarly all these sensations are actually invisible. How do you distinguish between touch and smell? By what sensation do you distinguish between the two? The touch is understood by touch, and smell by the nose, fine! But how do you know that the two are different from each other? What is the sense by which you can distinguish between one and the other? How do you know that hearing is not seen? Who is it that distinguishes? The eyes can only tell you what is sight, and hear can only tell you what is hearing, but what is it that tells you that hearing and seeing is different from each other? So, there must be another sense, which is capable of both; then only it can distinguish between the two. And according to Indian psychology the mind can be so trained that even when the eyes are closed you can see. In modern times many experiments have been made; one of the subjects of experiments was asked, because he had a capacity of a certain kind, to travel in the big city without accidents, blindfolded, on a motorcycle. Now, this has been accomplished: that means you can see without eyes.

In fact the Bhagavad Gita starts with the statement of sañjaya, who is seated in Hastinapura, and who gives an account of what is happening in dharma-kṣetre and kuru-kṣetre, in the Kurukshetra, this is quite far. Surely He has not seen with His eyes. There is some other sight which has been given to Him. Such is the real power of manaḥ. This is only stated in one word, little word, but there is so much in it, that such a huge amount of psychologies contained in one word: manaḥ. There is a sense of which 5 senses are specialisations, so they are not described here. The moment you describe manas, you have described all the 5 senses and more than that, the 6th sense, manaḥ, and that is called the real sense, because without that sense no other sense can work, can function. And manas is even more than senses, because it can even do the work without the actual sense organs.

It can develop other senses also, which are not normally understood. It is manas, which can read the thoughts of the others, which are not normally physically seen by anybody; somebody may smile at you and yet you may know that he is angry. Now, what is that sensation that you know that somebody is angry even when there is a beautiful smile on the face? That also is known; we are capable of knowing it. It is the capacity of the mind, which is called sense-mind; the mind that acts as a sense; or mind which depends on the sense; or mind of which senses are specialisations; or mind which is behind all the senses; the mind which is the only real sense: that is called the sense-mind. That is manas.