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Yogic and Vedantic concept that was adopted and modified by Theosophy and from the latter made its way into the general New Age movement and contemporary western esotericism. It generally refers to the highest or innermost subtle body that veils the true soul.
HinduismThe Mandukya Upanishad refers to the Self having four "feet" or states of consciousness. These are: waking, dreaming, dreamless sleep, and the transcendent (Turiya). Each of these is associated with both an individual state of consciousness and a cosmic state. Dreamless sleep corresponds to prajna. In Advaita Vedanta, this is associated with the Anandamaya kosha or "sheath" (kosha) made of bliss, and with the causal principle or causal body (karana sarira).
TheosophyIn Blavatsky's synthesis of eastern philosophy with western esotericism, the union of the higher Manas with the Buddhi (i.e. the essential nature of the fifth, along with the sixth, of the seven principles) is referred to as the Causal Body (Blavatsky, Key to Theosophy, pp. 121, 174). This higher principle is contrasted with the lower, the Kama-Manas, which is the seat of lower passions. In the Theosophy of Annie Besant and C. W. Leadbeater, the "Causal Body" refers not to the "Buddhi-Manas" but to Blavatsky's "Higher Manas" alone. This is also referred to as the "Higher Mental", "Abstract Mind" (as opposed to Lower Mental or "Concrete Mind"), or "Causal Body". It is considered the highest subtle body, beyond even the mental body. As with all the vehicles of consciousness, the Causal Body is associated with an objective or cosmic plane, in this case the Causal plane. A detailed definition of the Causal Body, is provided by A. E. Powell, who has brought together information in the works of Besant and Leadbeater in a series of books on each of the subtle bodies.
Samael Aun WeorIn the tradition of Samael Aun Weor it is taught that most people have only incarnated a fraction of the causal body or human soul. This fraction is known as the Essence or the Buddhata, which in humanity is bottled up in the psychological aggregates that constitute the ego. Samael Aun Weor states:
Thus, the various aggregates that are within ourselves represent different volitional impulses. There are, therefore, several wills within our psyche which fight against each other. The intellectual animal doesn’t have any autonomous, independent and unitotal will. There is no unity in the intellectual animal’s willpower. But when a man has created his Body of Conscious Will [causal body], he has individual willpower he can work with in the whole universe.The way to create the causal body is by working in the "Forge of Cyclops", that is, sexual alchemy between husband and wife.
- H. P. Blavatsky, Key to Theosophy
- Arthur E. Powell The Causal Body and the Ego online part 1, Part 2
- Samael Aun Weor, The Initiatic Path in the Arcana of Tarot and Kabbalah, Thelema Press, (1978) 2007.
- Samael Aun Weor. "Man and the Universe That Surrounds Him". Retrieved 2007-03-25.
- Causal Body - Theosophical interpretations.