The same soul is born again and again, and it alone can comprehend Brahma. We can understand the idea of the soul in several ways; and when a person attains to knowledge of the soul; all his sins are removed. According to some the highest action is that which is characterized by knowledge; and they believe that the highest goal can be attained by means of renunciation of all actions.
Re-birth: The revolution of birth takes place again and again; and we say so because of the characteristics of creatures; and it is the same soul that is born again and again.
Essential character of the soul: The soul does not consist in its outward form or the body; and it may be described as the faculty of seeing or understanding Brahma.
How to understand the soul: We can understand the idea of the soul in several ways. A person is said to exist because of the existence of the soul. We can grasp its idea by means of contemplation too. It is the one thing within the body that does not change; and we can grasp its idea in a state of one-pointedness, for then there is no difference between the seer (the soul) and the object seen. We also see that it abides in the body up to the time of death.
Removal of sin: When a person attains to knowledge of the soul, all his sins are removed. Death also puts an end to sin; but that applies to actions not yet begun; and so far as previous actions are concerned, their sin is removed only when their effect comes to an end.
The highest action and the highest end: According to some there is also another class of actions besides those that are good or bad, and they are actions characterized by knowledge. They also believe that it is only when a person destroys both good and evil actions by means of Yoga that he can attain to the highest goal.
The soul and its goal: It is a law that the lower abides in the higher; and so all things abide in the soul. Real immortality consists in doing heroic deeds without injury to any one; but there are some who believe that it consists in being merged in the Supreme; and that the soul follows the path of light in the world beyond.
All things abide in the soul: It is a law that the lower abides in the higher; and so speech and the other sense-organs abide in the mind, the mind in prana or vital breath, and that again in the soul.
Real immortality: The soul cannot be seen; but all souls are essentially alike. Real immortality consists in doing heroic deeds without injury to any one; but there are some who have another idea of immortality, that is, when the soul, after passing through a number of births, is merged in the Supreme.
The soul is minute, but, at the same time, full of ardour and glow, which arise not from self-denial or prohibition, but rather from its association with the body.
We are told that all souls are at last merged in the Highest; and the Highest is without any division, as the sacred books declare.
It is said that when the soul attains to perfection, it is filled with light, realizes its own self, and becomes full of joy. All its sense-organs are illuminated because of the strength of knowledge; and the remainder of its course on earth becomes sweet; and it values its own purity more than anything else. And when it passes away from this earth, it follows the path of light into the world beyond.
The highest end of the soul: Those who believe in this idea of immortality of the soul maintain that the soul passes through light, and comes into the presence of the Deity; and, as all its actions have come to an end, it is merged in the Highest, and thereafter has no desire for further action.
The end of the soul: Those who believe in this idea of immortality of the soul tell us that it goes on and on through light, from cloud to air, and then into lightning that is above the sky, accompanied by its "subtle body"; and then it is led by something that is of the nature of lightning itself, and comes into the presence of the Deity. All its actions having come to an end, the soul, together with the "subtle body", is merged in the Highest; and after this it can have no intention of gaining anything through further actions. This is what we are told, and the excellence of the idea is obvious.
Real freedom: It is said that when the soul arrives there, it becomes free for ever afterwards. But we are unable to think of the soul except in terms of the intellect; and so we must think of the problem of freedom too in its light. If we do so, we find that real freedom consists in a state of equilibrium in the midst of all actions, or the experience of pleasure and pain.
Into the highest: It is said that when the soul arrives there, it becomes free, and lives on for evermore in the Highest; and this, we are told, is due to the fact that it own nature is like that of the Highest.
A rational view: But we are unable to think of the soul except in terms of the intellect; for even when we try to think of it as soul, it appears to be full of reflection.
We have accordingly to think of the problem of freedom of the soul in terms of the intellect. There are some who believe that this can be achieved by means of renunciation of all actions in the world. But we find that there can be absence of action only if things were not connected with one another. But we find that they are all connected with the soul, though the soul itself is not subject to change. Hence the soul cannot refrain from all kinds of actions. On the other hand, it can, be proved that it can attain to a state of evenness or equilibrium in the midst of all actions, or the experience of pleasure and pain. And this, according to the Scriptures, is the state of one who ii said to be free from all revolutions of birth.