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The word Anand in Sanskrit and other Indian languages (e.g. Hindi) translates to bliss. In vedanta philosophy there is a discussion of 5 koshas where the innermost kosha is Anandmaya kosha. So firstly why is this (Anandmaya) a separate 5th kosha? Isn't bliss also a state of mind (part of Manomaya kosha)?

Then the atman/ purush/saakshi resides within the panch-kosha as in the koshas are external to atman. This creates further confusion since atman is same is brahman which is sat-chit-ananada. Now is ananda in sachchidananda same or different from the anandmaya kosha?

Edit : My real query is about the understanding of the true meaning of word 'ananda'. The suggested links don't discuss that explicitly I think.

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  • Bliss isn't a state of mind. Infact bliss is the nature of Atman/Brahman as per advaita vedanta. When this Atman shines on the mind (or in other words, animates/enlivens the inert mind) it feels like that bliss is a state of mind, but actually it is the Atman who is reflecting its ananda properties on the inert mind. May 30 at 16:33
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    May 30 at 16:34
  • Yes, Atman is same as Brahman. Its just that, the portion of Brahman which is residing within the 5 koshas is called Atman (or 'adhyatma' as Lord Krishna mentioned in Bhagavad Gita) ... Upon videha mukti (liberation on the death/destruction of the 5 koshas), the brahman within the koshas merges with the brahman outside, just like on the destruction of the pot, the air inside the pot merges with the air outside the pot. May 30 at 16:38
  • The reason the 5th kosha, is called anandamaya kosha is because its nearest to the blissful Atman. Since this anandamaya kosha is very thin, the ananda properties of Atman shines through this kosha. Due to this reason, when the meditating man looks inside and penetrates all the koshas one by one, in search of the Atman within, he comes across this final anandamaya kosha and mistakes it for the Atman, since this kosha borrows or absorbs the blissful properties of Atman ... May 30 at 17:11
  • ... But as Shankaracharya said, that even the anandamaya kosha is prone to destruction (upon videha mukti) and so it CANNOT be the Atman itself, no matter how blissful it might seem to the meditating man. The REAL blissful thing is the original saakshi Atman within the 5 koshas. That is the real you. Thou Art that. :) May 30 at 17:14

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