What is My Self Now?
D: I want to know what the Heart is and where it is and so forth. But I want to have this doubt cleared first. I am ignorant of my own truth, my knowledge is limited, imperfect. You say “I” means the Self, Atman. But the Atman is said to be always self-aware whereas I am unaware …
M: People always fall into this confusion. What you call your self now is not the real Self which is neither born nor dies.
D: Then you admit that what I call my self is the body or part of the body.
M: But the body is matter (Jada), it never knows, it is always the known.
D: Then, if I am neither the Atman, the Self nor the Anatman, the not-self….
M: I am coming to the rescue. Between spirit and matter, the self and the body, there is born something which is called the Ahamkara, the ego-self, Jiva, the living being. Now what you call your self is this ego-self which is different from the ever-conscious Self and from unconscious matter, but which at the same time partakes of the character of both spirit and matter Chetana and Jada.
D: Then when you say “know thyself’ you want me to know the ego-self?
M: But the moment the ego-self tried to know itself, it changes its character; it begins to partake less and less of the Jada, in which it is absorbed, and more and more of the Consciousness of the Self, the Atman.