“Antahkarana” or the “Sutratma” are very commonly used in the spiritual schools relating to the man and the soul. It is defined as a thread kind of stuff connecting the physical body of the man and his higher soul, which is invisible in nature.
“Antahkarana” is a Sanskrit term which is interpreted as “Mind Vehicle”; “bridge between higher and lower mind”; whereas the literally “Antah” means “inner” and “Karana” means organ, “inner organ”. It is also interpreted as the instrument of the mind, intellect, ego and subconscious mind.
Antahakarana has its lowest anchorage in the crown chakra of the etheric body. Madam Blavatsky says that Antahkarana is the pathway lies between one’s spirit and self. It is the highway of sensation and the rude arousers of egoity.
Adhi Shankara in his book Viveka Chudamani in the 95 and 96 slokas says that “one Antahkarana or inner organ is known by four different names, manas, buddhi, ahankara and chittam according to the different functions. When the mind cogitates it is called manas. When it comes to a decision it is called buddhi. When it stores memories it is called chittam. When it identifies itself with each of these functions it is known as ahankara.”
LeadBeater in his book “The Masters and the paths” says that This antahkarana, which is triple, thus contains the plan of work of the incarnation, and the Overseers, as agents of the Lords of Karma, guard that plan. Djwhal Khul, in the book “Rays and Initiation”, by Alice Bailey, has given six steps in the building of the antakarana.
1. Intention – This first step entails an understanding of the task to be carried out, a decision and determination to do so, and a right orientation to achieving your goal. This first step also entails the gathering of one’s forces and energies into the highest point of mental/spiritual focus one can attain, and holding it there. This gets back to the term of “holding the mind steady in the light.”
2. Visualization – The second step involves the utilization of your imagination and visualizing abilities in the building of the cord and bridge of light you are attempting to build. At the end of this chapter, visualization meditations that Djwhal Khul has given for this purpose will be given.
3. Projection – This third step involves the utilization of your will, or will power, and the use of a word of power to send upon this line or bridge of light substance. This action of sending this word of power, with your will power, through your visualized cord, with the highest possible intention, extends the gossamer threads of light towards the spiritual triad and monad.
4. Invocation and evocation – this invocation by the disciple has now drawn an evocative response from the spiritual triad and the monad, or spirit. The father (monad) working through the thread created by the disciple moves to meet his son (soul extension). The monad or father in heaven sends forth a projection of light substance itself that meets the projection that the disciple has created on earth. The lower projection and the higher projection meet and the antakarana is built. The tension created by the disciple evokes the attention of the monad and spiritual triad. Through practice this reciprocal cord or bridge of energy becomes stronger and stronger. It is a flame of light. There is no longer a sense of three separate countries of personality, soul, monad, but rather one being functioning on all planes, through this path of light.
5. Stabilization – In the beginning the antakarana is very thin and thread like. Through practice, meditation, and proper spiritual living on all levels of being it will form a cord that cannot be broken.
6. Resurrection – This last step has to do with the strengthening of the antakarana cord, which then eads to the greater merger and blending and integration of the triplicity, that at the fourth initiation has become the duality. This duality at the fifth and finally the sixth initiation or ascension becomes the oneness, or complete unification of the soul infused personality, and the monad which has been working through the spiritual triad. These two states of consciousness totally blend in consciousness at the fifth initiation, and blend fully into the four body system at the sixth initiation which is ascension, or resurrection. The four bodies, (physical, astral, mental, spiritual) and the personality are merged into light and become immortal.
Our Satguru Grand Master Choa Kok Sui defines it as the spiritual cord which connects the incarnated soul with the higher soul. The size of the spiritual cord may vary from person to person. He further says that it is shown sometime with a pillar of light descending on the head.