...The spiritual Oriental teachers say a person has three forms of mind,'' Beatrice was explaining to him once, while they were on break between one lesson and another at university, ''which are the dense mind, the subtle level and the ultra-subtle mind. Primary Consciousness, or the dense mind, is that existential, Sartrean mind which is related to our senses and so it is guided directly by human primitive instincts; in Sanskrit, this is referred to as ālaya-vijñāna which is directly tied to the brain. The subtle mind comes into effect when we begin to be aware of our true nature or that which in Sanskrit is called Ātman or self-existent essence that eventually leads us to the spiritual dimension. Ultimately there is the Consciousness-Only or the Vijñapti-Mātra, an ultra-subtle mind which goes beyond what the other two levels of mind can fabricate, precisely because this particular mind is not a by-product of the human brain but a part of the Cosmic Consciousness of the Absolute, known in Sanskrit as Tathāgatagarbha, and it is at this profound level of Consciousness that we are able to achieve access to the Divine Wisdom and become one with it in an Enlightened State.''
''This spiritual subject really fascinates me,'' the Professor would declare, amazed at the extraordinary knowledge that Beatrice possessed.''
''In other words, a human being recognises itself from its eternal essence and not from its existence,'' Beatrice replied, smiling, as she gently touched the tip of his nose with the tip of her finger, as if she was making a symbolic gesture like when children are corrected by their teachers. ''See, here,'' she had said once, pulling at the sleeve of his t-shirt to make him look at her book. ''For example, in the Preface to the 1960 Notes on Dhamma, the Buddhist philosopher from the University of Cambridge, Ñāṇavīra Thera, maintains those that have understood Buddhist teachings have gone way beyond Existential Thought. And on this same theme, the German scholar of Buddhist texts, Edward Conze, said that the possible similarity that exists between Buddhist and Existential Thought lies only on the preliminary level. He said that in terms of the Four Noble Truths, or in Sanskrit Catvāri Āryasatyāni, the Existentialists have only the first, which teaches everything is ill. Of the second - which assigns the origin of ill to craving - they have a very imperfect grasp. As for the third and fourth, which consist of letting go of craving, and the Noble Eightfold Path that leads to liberation from the cycle of rebirth in the form of Nirvāṇa - these are unheard of. Knowing no way out, the Existentialists are manufacturers of their own woes...