If I survive after the destruction of my body then is it not true that me and my body are separate? If yes, then where do I live without the body? (Please answer according to the philosophical school you believe to be true.)


3 Answers 3


The "I" is the soul. And it is distinct from the body. The body is declared to be dead when the soul leaves the body.

Asya visramsamAnasya sharirasthasya dehinah |
DehAdvimuchyamanasya kimatra parishishyate | Etadvai tath ||

When, one, who is established in the body as it's lord, gets detached from the body, what remains in the body then? That is That (or the AtmA).

Kathopanishad 2.2.4

When the soul leaves the body, depending on it's accumulated Karmas, it goes to various Lokas, where it either enjoys the fruits of Karmas or gets punishments for the same.

But immediately after leaving the body it does not live in a gross body (Sthula Sarira). It has then only a subtle kind of body called the Linga Deha. Some call it Sukshma Sarira too. This body remains attached to the soul as long as it is not liberated.

  1. The Karma, auspicious and inauspicious, done in many previous lives and preserved in seed forms, remains always inherent in a human soul. Urged on by this Karma, the Jîvas quitting their previous bodies, enjoy Heaven or Hell as effects of these, their own acts. 22-23. According to their good or bad works, the Jîvas acquire the higher happy body and enjoy various pleasures in the Heavens, or they take up very painful vicious bodies and suffer various pains in hell. 24-25. At the expiry of the above period in Heaven or Hell, when there comes the time of his assuming another body, the Jîva becomes conscious of the subtle body (Linga Deha) and takes his birth again. When the Linga Deha comes into existence, the part of the Karma done in various previous births that are ripe and ready to yield their fruits, gets attached to the Jîva by God (or Destiny).

From Devi BhAgavatam 7.30

The ChAndogya Upanishad 5.10.6 describes how the soul (after leaving the human body) lives in the Chandraloka, till the fruits of Karmas are not exhausted. Thereafter, it gradually becomes air to finally becoming rain bearing clouds. Then the soul gets born as cereals and grains (which are cultivated aided by rainfall). Next, whoever (capable of producing children) eat those grains, the soul is born as their offspring.

So, the answer to your question is that the soul always lives within a subtle kind of body (the Linga Deha), that lasts till the soul gets liberation.

  • Can we see subtle body? Jul 15, 2018 at 6:49
  • I am not sure whether by Yogic powers that is achievable or not. @NarayanaSharma And I think u have a Q on that.
    – Rickross
    Jul 15, 2018 at 7:15
  • Yes, but no scriptural reference is provided in the answer written for this question. Jul 15, 2018 at 11:33
  • Yes u are right. I have checked the answer given to ur Q. @NarayanaSharma
    – Rickross
    Jul 16, 2018 at 5:24

Is me and my body separate ? where do I live without the body ?

Yes according to Vishishtadvaita school of Hinduism " You and your body are separate". This is described in Srimad Bhagavata Purana Skanda 7-Chapter 2- Verse 22. The shloka provides complete answer of your query.

नित्य आत्माव्ययः शुद्धः सर्वगः सर्ववित्परः ।
धत्तेऽसावात्मनो लिङ्गं मायया विसृजन्गुणान् ॥ SB 7.2 22SB 7.2 22॥

nitya ātmāvyayaḥ śuddhaḥ sarvagaḥ sarva-vit paraḥ
dhatte ’sāv ātmano liṅgaṁ māyayā visṛjan guṇān

The spirit soul, the living entity, has no death, for he is eternal and inexhaustible. Being free from material contamination, he can go anywhere in the material or spiritual worlds. He is fully aware and completely different from the material body, but because of being misled by misuse of his slight independence, he is obliged to accept subtle and gross bodies created by the material energy and thus be subjected to so-called material happiness and distress. Therefore, no one should lament for the passing of the spirit soul from the body.

So the answer given by above shloka is " The soul or Atman is omnipresent , yet distinct from the body . And through his Maya or Avidya he creates gunas (pleasure , pain , different bodies of species etc.) . So there is temporarily relation between your actual self and your body, in this or all your lives . And the Atma (Jivatma ) by Maya of Lord and by his karmas gets bound in different material bodies .

This also can be seen in Shreemad Bhagvad Gita 2.22

वासांसि जीर्णानि यथा विहाय नवानि गृह्णाति नरोऽपराणि।
तथा शरीराणि विहाय जीर्णा न्यन्यानि संयाति नवानि देही।।2.22।।

vāsāṁsi jīrṇāni yathā vihāya navāni gṛhṇāti naro ’parāṇi tathā
śarīrāṇi vihāya jīrṇāny anyāni saṁyāti navāni dehī

2.22 Just as a man casts off worn-out clothes and puts on new ones, so also the embodied Self casts off worn-out bodies and enters others which are new.


Absolutely Yes. Atman is different from body and mind. In Nirvanashtakam, Drig drishya Vivek and in many other Scriptures it is mentioned distinctively

Here is the first verse of Nirvanashtakam

मनोबुद्ध्यहङ्कार चित्तानि नाहं न च श्रोत्रजिह्वे न च घ्राणनेत्रे । न च व्योम भूमिर्न तेजो न वायुः चिदानन्दरूपः शिवोऽहम् शिवोऽहम् ॥१॥

Mano-Buddhy-Ahangkaara Cittaani Naaham Na Ca Shrotra-Jihve Na Ca Ghraanna-Netre | Na Ca Vyoma Bhuumir-Na Tejo Na Vaayuh Cid-Aananda-Ruupah Shivo[a-A]ham Shivo[a-A]ham ||1||


1.1: Neither am I the Mind, nor the Intelligence or Ego, 1.2: Neither am I the organs of Hearing (Ears), nor that of Tasting (Tongue), Smelling (Nose) or Seeing (Eyes), 1.3: Neither am I the Sky, nor the Earth, Neither the Fire nor the Air, 1.4: I am the Ever Pure Blissful Consciousness; I am Shiva, I am Shiva, The Ever Pure Blissful Consciousness.

and the rest of shlokas explain it in more detail.

Same is the case with Drig Drishya Vivek. It is an introductory book of Vedanta ( Prakaran Granth). Specially ref verse no 1 and 20. You can listen lecture series on this topic by Rev Swami Sarvapriyanandaji Maharaj which is available on Youtube. He is revered monk of Ramakrishna Mission and I am privileged to listen to his lectures in person.

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