I think I am pretty well aware that the physical body is influenced by emotions (blushing is an example, or a nervous feeling in the abdoment due to axienty). I think I am also pretty well aware the emotions is a product of the mental processes. When I take something for granted I am not thankfull and that is reflected in my emotions and physical body. During meditation I can put my focus on something which I would not call the sensations of the physical, nor are it my emotions and it aren't also thoughts. But, it influences all 3. Thoughts become more positive, I feel happier, and my body starts tingling with pleasant sensations.

I am reading about these different kinds of 'bodies'. The physical body, emotional body, lower/higher mental body, oversoul and spiritual body... I also read somewhere about the buddhic body. Now I am confused by all these different kinds of models/interpretations.

I've never read anything about distinct energy bodies from a buddhism perspective. The terms look so a like that it almost should be, but I do not find a direct relationship on the web. Does Buddhism support the buddhic body perspective? Is there literature or teaching related to this, or any other conceptualiziation of energetic bodies.

1 Answer 1


Briefly speaking, Mahayana and especially Vajrayana schools assign utmost importance to energetic phenomena at the level of latent potentials, hidden relationships, and subtle influences. However, we don't consider it a "body" or even any kind of bounded entity. We just say, the energy at that level is in flux, things are fluid, neither one nor apart.

If you think about it, in Buddhism we try to stay away from too much appropriation of stuff as me/mine. So recognizing energy-level phenomena but not identifying with them kinda makes sense.

Also it should be noted, that in (Mahayana) Buddhism we don't say that stuff on different levels is made from different materials, no. Physical, emotional, energetic, karmic - they are all here, made from the same stuff, but can be observed by focusing on different levels, from coarse to subtle, and these different observations produce different perceived planes (dhatu). It is very important to understand that all these levels or planes are same stuff.

To consider physical and spiritual to be two different things would be a gross error of Dualism, in Mahayana Buddhism.

  • Interesting. Is it even possible to establish that buddhism is philosophical materialism? Does the suttas support that?
    – user11699
    Aug 6, 2019 at 13:35
  • @Erik Maybe at some point one experiences to be able to control the causal existsnce of a physical body. Tom Campbell, a consciousness researchers, claims to be able to experience a physical body in a reality different from the physical reality we know his face from, so to say. He also describes it is pretty useless as it takes a huge amount of time to learn how to control it in that reality. And therefore it is more efficient to focus on being in the physical reality one already has experience with. How would you define materialism? Does matter from one physical reality differ from another? Aug 7, 2019 at 7:53
  • @MikedeKlerk Definition, from wikipedia: Materialism is a form of philosophical monism which holds that matter is the fundamental substance in nature, and that all things, including mental states and consciousness, are results of material interactions.
    – user11699
    Aug 7, 2019 at 15:15
  • @Erik I think the mind (as an information processor) is required to define a concept, such as materialism. Than it becomes a matter or perspective, which is relative. Do you start with the mind, defining materialism, or do you start with matter, defining the mind. The latter would suggest that matter ultimately defines the concept of materialism as fundamental truth by itself. That would mean that no information processing is required, which might as well be the grand illusion of life: 'thinking' that matter objectively exist, while all might be rendered by the mind. Aug 9, 2019 at 15:03
  • @Erik For the latter, it suggest that everything results from information processing, which implies that all that is percieved is a function of time. Hence everything can be waves. If matter defines the mind which defines materialism, as an intrinsic property, as fact. Then no information processing is required for anything to exist at all. Yet science finds out that the tiniest particles of matter (quarks for instance) are wave functions. You might be interested in the science of the wave function collapse of quantum mechanics. Watch this: youtube.com/watch?v=hB_2Qd5xNvE Aug 9, 2019 at 15:06

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