The Eleven Companions

aye bhi gyarah le ke govinda radhe,

jayega bhi gyarah le ke aurna bata de

When we came into this world, God gave us eleven companions. These were the five subtle internal senses, five external sense organs and one mind. There was no twelfth companion. We formed relationships with other companions, such as our mother, father, brother, sister, husband, wife and so on, but God did not give us these companions. These eleven companions work in a disciplined and systematic manner. One mind controls the five internal senses and the five external sense organs. For example, if the mind gives the order, only then will your hand lift something.

Although the mind is extremely fickle, in this system, all the senses operate in a very disciplined manner. All eleven senses are controlled by the mind. Not a single sense is able to revolt against the mind. Some actions are performed with the will of the mind in conjunction with the senses, and some are performed by the will of the mind alone. In any case, the senses must do whatever the mind desires. For example, a boy is going to school. On the way he sees that hot jalebis (an Indian sweet) are being made. “Oh! Jalebis! Wow!” The mind asks the eyes, “What happened?” The eyes say, “Jalebis!” The mind says, “Check your pocket for money.” The hand checks the pocket and there is no money. So the mind says, “Oh, there’s no money. Tomorrow bring money and then you can eat a jalebi. If you try to take a jalebi today, the shopkeeper will beat you.” In this situation, it is not the mind’s desire to eat jalebis, but the senses. Still, all the senses are working according to the will of the mind.

So these eleven companions always remain with us, whether we are awake, sleeping or dreaming. It is only during mahapralaya (complete universal dissolution) that the senses and the mind merge into maya, and only our causal body remains. A person may think, “When we die, then these eleven companions don’t remain with us.” This is not so. Even then, they remain with you, but in a subtle form. Before death the soul along with the subtle senses and mind leave the gross body. The soul never remains without a body.

In this way, the gross and subtle bodies are both made of maya. Thus, we entered this world with eleven companions, and we will take them with us when we go.


An English translation of a discourse delivered in Hindi by:

Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj

8 August 2009

Bhakti Dham, Mangarh

© Radha Govind Samiti