Spiritual Questions and Answers with Radhanath Swami

What is the difference between mind and intelligence? Radhanath Swami clarifies…

By on September 17, 2010 in Insights with 35 Comments

Mind Intelligence DifferenceQuestion to Radhanath Swami: What is the difference between mind and intelligence?

Radhanath Swami: Lord Krishna speaks about his energies in the Bhagavad Gita. “Earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intelligence and false ego—all together these eight constitute My separated material energies.” Out of these, earth, water, fire, air and ether are gross energies, or the gross elements of creation. The other three—mind, intelligence and the ego—are subtle energies, or the subtle elements of creation.

Apart from these eight, there is one more element which Krishna calls as His superior energy. “Besides these, O mighty-armed Arjuna, there is another, superior energy of Mine, which comprises the living entities who are exploiting the resources of this material, inferior nature.” This superior energy is the soul, the jivatma, which is eternal, full of knowledge and full of bliss. Though the soul is part and parcel of God, it is temporarily covered by the eight material elements while in this world. The soul by nature is part of God. It is looking for the ecstasy of loving God. But when the soul forgets its relation with God, it tries to look for pleasure through the ego, the intelligence, the mind and the senses. Through the eye, the soul is searching for some beautiful object to enjoy. Similarly through different senses the soul is trying to enjoy different sense objects. When these experiences come through the senses, the mind is being controlled by those experiences. The mind is relating to those experiences in terms of enjoyment and suffering, “I don’t want this because this is causing me suffering, but I do want this because it is causing me enjoyment.” That is basically how the mind functions. But the intelligence is the discriminating factor.

Let’s see how the mind and the intelligence fixed in knowledge respond when a beautiful object that is actually harmful appears in front. The mind says, “I want this, I want to enjoy this.”  But the intelligence fixed in knowledge says, “No. This is illusion. Enjoying this is like licking the honey on the edge of a razor blade. You might enjoy little, but then you will suffer.” But the intelligence not fixed in knowledge would figure out all kinds of strategic, decisive plans to somehow or other get that object of enjoyment.

If the mind is controlled by the intelligence in knowledge, it is the best of friends. But if the mind is not controlled by the intelligence in knowledge, and it controls the intelligence, the mind is your worst enemy. Yoga means to control the mind by God conscious intelligence. We develop God conscious intelligence through study of the scriptures which tells us what is good for our spiritual progress and what is not, even though the object may appear otherwise.


Related Posts:

Tags: , , ,

Written by : You can find him on Google+

  • Sunny

    Intricate – isnt it? Before I came across Spirituality I never knew there are so many aspects to ones own self. Without a proper understanding of our own self how can we expect to be happy and utilize our lives to get the best result?

  • jyoti Chilka

    Very nice thought by Radhanath Swami. We can surely make great progress if we simply understand the point which he is trying to tell us.

  • Dr Yuvaraj J Bhosale

    You might enjoy little, but then you will suffer.- H H Radhanath Swami

  • Shyam Bihari Das

    Maharaj has so clearly distinguished the intelligence from the mind. Thank you Maharaj.

  • M Pandu Rangayya shetty

    Radhanath Swami gives the clue to control the mind to make it as one’s friend just by using intelligence to control the mind which is very very important to have a peace of mind. all glories to Radhanath Swami.

  • naresh Jethwa

    Thank for wonderful article.

  • sachin komble

    Thanks for sharing this.

  • Swapnil Disawal

    Thank you. Intelligence is a light house guarding us day and night.

  • Aishwarya

    Yoga means to control the mind by God conscious intelligence-wonderful definition of Yoga.

  • suresh kanakraj

    wonderful explanation on how to control one’s mind and make the best friend of one’s intelligence,

  • Radhanath swami has presented appropriately mind and intelligence

  • hrishikesh mafatlal

    Reading Radhanath Swami’s clarity of thought and feeling his purity, I hope to someday develope a proper sense of discrimination.

  • Pranav Gore

    pamho. This was one of the striking question in my mind and my intelligence could not able to answer. but now its all right. thank you very much maharaj.

  • Meera Sharma

    Thank you Maharajah for disclosing the secret of our suffering in this material world.
    “when the soul forgets its relation with God, it tries to look for pleasure through the ego, the intelligence, the mind and the senses”.

  • Yoga means to control the mind by God conscious intelligence. this is quite amazing and striking definition of yoga. thank you Radhanath Swami Maharaj for this nice article.

  • A very nice description of the different functions of such subtle objects as mind, intelligence and ego.

  • Anant Bhat

    HH Radhanath Swami Maharaj properly explained about the defination of Yoga & how to control mind.. Thank you Maharaj

  • Deepali Boradia

    Thankyou Radhanath Swami for so explicitly and clearly explaning the difference between the mind and the intelligence.

  • KG

    very nice explanation of the difference between mind and intelligence!!!

  • Rajesh

    mind blowing explanation by Radhanath Swami.

  • Vidya Patham

    While psychologists and psycho-analysts still grapple with classifying the mind and intelligence as one, the Vedic scriptures have explained the difference millions of years ago. These words are echoed by Radhanath Swami through his pure and unadulterated teachings of the Bahgavad Gita and Bhagvatam.

  • kumar

    thank you for sharing this

  • Vishnupriya

    thank u..

  • Nilkanth b. kohale

    “the need of god conscious intelligence can control the mind & give him a right direction but if it is not then it will make the adjustments to fulfill the nasty desires of mind” its a real eye opening statement of maharaj

  • Sumit

    Yes and that’s why we should provide fuel to our intelligence through reading the spiritual scriptures and knowing what God’s position is and what our position is with respect to God. In that sense only we can make a spiritual progress.

  • jesal mehta

    Thank you.Really appreciate your efforts to help mankind.

  • sharda gokarn

    Thankyou Maharaj for wonderful article. So clearly you have explained to control of mind through the proper use of intelligence.

  • When I see a good post I do one of three thing:1.Share it with the close contacts.2.save it in some of the common social bookmarking websites.3.Be sure to return to the website where I came accross the article.After reading this article I’m really thinking of doing all of the above…

  • Servant

    The differentiation of mind and intelligence, so clear and easily acceptable by His Holiness Radhanath Swami Maharaj

  • Gurrappanaidu

    Wonderful explanation of the difference between Mind and intellegnce.

    All Glories to HH Radhanath swami maharaj.

    Thank you so much for posting wonderful nectar.

  • djay

    thank you maharaj

  • Kalpana Kulkarni

    Oh! We are made up of so many energies – really complicated!

  • Gokul Sundari Devi Dasi

    Wonderful answer ..Jai Gurudev!!

  • Kalpana Kulkarni

    Very lucid answer about the difference between mind and intelligence. Basically mind wanders all around and wants anything that gives enjoyment. But the intelligence knows that some things are not good even though they may give temporary happiness. We have to ensure that intelligence keeps the mind in check in order to progress in our spiritual lives.


    Very clear. It throws ample light on the difference of Intelligence and mind. But one thing I could not grasp whether there are two intelligences – one in knowledge and the other, not in knowledge. One thing more, the soul which is a part of the God, is regarded as a fraction of perfect light i.e. God. It is beyond feelings. So, how does it feel separated from God and in the absence of reunion with the God, it starts taking pleasure joining the ego or other senses. AS, I have heard, the soul has no relations with body. The pain and pleasure which a man feels or goes through, look affecting the soul also but it mere illusion quite like the colour of burning lak near a piece of marble. As long as the lak is aflame near the piece of the marble, the colour marble looks quite like that of the flame. But, in reality, it is white. So is soul. It is beyond feeling of joys and sorrows.