Human Design According to Sankhya

Human Structure: The Design of the Body According to Sankhya


How Individualized Conscious Energy

Creates a Human Form


The essence of Sankhya philosophy can be expressed by the following question. “What is the one bit of knowledge that is the key to understand all other things?”

The answer is CONSCIOUSNESS. Consciousness is prime. Without consciousness there is no existence.

Starting from the foundation of consciousness, all answers may be arrived at through experience and logical deduction. The ancient sages delineated the 24 components of consciousness that create a human being according to the Sankhya approach.

Undisturbed consciousness exists. Through will power, or intention, the undisturbed consciousness creates a vibration to evaluate itself. “I am aware, let me evaluate this state of awareness.”

Before the first component of all creation appears, conscious bliss exists alone. Once the vibration of intention causes the created consciousness to appear, it becomes self-aware. Evaluating itself, the created consciousness determines that it is good. The energy vibration caused by acknowledging that “consciousness is good” is the initial idea of separation and individuality. “Consciousness is good” presupposes that there is another state of consciousness that is not “good”.

This is the beginning of duality. One eternal thought that is reality and the unreal forms willed into existence by that consciousness when it begins to assign labels to variations in awareness.

The subtle energy created by the initial recognition that “consciousness is good” is a pervasive substance with its center everywhere and its circumference nowhere. The pervasive “good” substance is the first of the 24 subtle components of a human. In this substance the three binding qualities of neutral, positive and negative are in perfect equilibrium. The binding qualities may also be described as the maintenance, constructive, and destructive qualities of attachment.

While enjoying this exalted state of consciousness, comes the realization that there must have been something before this awareness. Self-awareness consumes all thought at this stage. “I am aware, let me evaluate this state of awareness” transitions into “My awareness is supreme, and yet I have forgotten where this conscious state began.”

Uncertainty about the origin of consciousness, prompts a reaction of self-preservation.

When the pervasive substance (the medium that transmits the vibration of thoughts) is influenced by the positive quality, a quality that seeks to protect and promote the original thought, it creates the second subtle substance, comprehensive intelligence. Comprehensive intelligence is the innate detail that resides within all things, not just the little bit of knowledge held by an individual human. Comprehensive intelligence seeks to preserve, protect and create anything considered good.

The conscious state of universal ecstasy is the pervasive substance. The intention to preserve and protect that conscious state of bliss becomes comprehensive intelligence.

The activity of the positive intention on the neutral balanced qualities, awakens the negative quality. The negative quality resists the actions of the positive quality. The negative reaction may destroy the products of the positive intention. However, on a subtle level more often the negative quality hides the products of the positive expressions under false coverings. The negative actions create the third component in the descent of human consciousness, abstract ego. The abstract ego embodies the idea of separation. Abstract ego establishes relativity, or the comparison of the separate existence to the whole (or of creation to the One creator). The abstract ego thinks, “I am this, but I am not that.”

Like comprehensive intelligence, the abstract ego is within each separate thing and is not the ego of an individual human. Abstract ego is the attitude that each separate thing is fulfilling its rightful purpose. From the perspective of the abstract ego, each component of consciousness has no need of the whole. With the consciousness of individuality, abstract ego perceives that it is more important alone than when joined into the comprehensive intelligence. The abstract ego becomes the human ego when it identifies with a specific human form and with the limited experiences of one body.

With the appearance of the abstract ego, will power initiates even more attempts to choose and protect those things perceived as “good.” By creating more restlessness, there is the introduction of more negative quality to the abstract ego. The significant increase of restlessness expands the number of objects created from the original substance into what appears to be an infinite number of variations. The appearance of this multitude causes the cosmic mind to form. The cosmic mind is the fourth of the 24 components of a human.

The cosmic mind is the result of the abstract ego’s desire to express separate, or individual experience within the confines of the relative duality of a singular substance. When the cosmic mind identifies with a single human body, it becomes the little human mind.  The human mind is only capable of expressing small fractions of the comprehensive intelligence. The cosmic mind is not attached to a single incarnation. The cosmic mind is able to perceive wisdom and express it appropriately through a limited physical form.

The activity of the cosmic mind results in yet another increase in the negative or manifesting qualities. All manifestation appears in the step-by-step degradation of a singular positive state of being. The pervasive substance, comprehensive intelligence, abstract ego and cosmic mind are within the causal realm.

The causal realm consists only of thought and energy. It cannot be measured by any physical instrument. The subtle realms have a tangible substance and as humankind progresses, more physical instruments will be developed to measure the qualities of the subtle realm. Today portions of the subtle realms may be recognized and measured as some of the identified qualities of energy, for example electricity, radio waves, light, sound and thought waves.

The First Four Components

The First Four Components

After the four steps toward human incarnation that take place in the causal realm of consciousness, the next ten, the abstract senses give birth to the subtle (astral) realm.

The increase in restlessness in the individualized conscious energy present in the causal realm creates the first measurable components of human existence in the subtle realm. These are the ten abstract senses. The ten abstract senses include five knowing senses and five working senses.

The five knowing senses are the mental concepts behind the senses, listed in order: sound in the cervical center; touch in the dorsal center; sight in the lumbar center; taste in the sacral center; and smell in the coccygeal center.

Knowing Senses

Knowing Senses









The five working senses are the mental concepts behind physical abilities to be used in a material universe that has not yet been created. The five working senses include the following abilities, listed in order: to express through speech from the cervical center; to execute (or perform an activity) from the dorsal center; to move from the lumbar center (this location is commonly known as the “center of movement”); to expel waste from the sacral center; to procreate from the coccygeal center.

Working Senses

Working Senses










This completes 14 steps in the 24 steps or components of a human. So far the conscious energy agitated by the actions of will power or intention have created a causal realm and a subtle (astral) realm of consciousness.

The cosmic mind guides the subtle sense concepts to create physical sense experiences. The cosmic mind is responsible for the relative experiences of all manifestation, not just for human beings. The cosmic mind informs animals, plants and even seeming inert matter with some form of at least one knowing and working sense.

From a human perspective, physical manifestation is the result of ever greater activity and even more restlessness. Will power exerted for specific purposes directs energy and thought to create a progressively more crude creation.  When the power of will is applied to the conscious energy in the five knowing and five working senses, the result is the appearance of the negative physical forms of each. The physical form consists of five material objects of resistance born from the knowing senses and five traditional elements born from the working senses.

The five manifestations of material resistance listed in order, include: sound from the cervical center; touch from the dorsal center; form and color from the lumbar center; taste and fluidity from the sacral center; and odor from the coccygeal center.

Material Resistances

Material Resistances










Next are the five substances. These are the traditional material elements, listed in order, including: ether from the cervical center; air from the dorsal center; fire from the lumbar center; water from the sacral center; and earth from the coccygeal center.

Material Elements

Material Elements










The four initial thoughts: Pervasive Substance, Comprehensive Intelligence, Abstract Ego, Cosmic Mind form the causal realms of human existence. The five abstract Knowing Senses: sound, touch, sight, taste, smell combined with the five abstract Working Senses: speech, execution, movement, elimination, procreation comprise the ten sense awareness that create the subtle or astral realms of humankind. The five Material Resistances: sound, touch, form/color, taste/fluidity, odor and the five Material Elements: ether, air, fire, water, earth are the constructs of the human perception of the physical universe. Altogether, these 24 components of the singular substance of consciousness create the human experience.

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Ancient History

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