This material body, or the material manifestation, is covered by seven layers: skin, flesh, blood, marrow, bone, fat and semen.
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- 1 Srimad-Bhagavatam
- 2 Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
- 3 Lectures
- 4 Conversations and Morning Walks
SB Canto 2
The seven elements of the body, namely the thin layer on the skin, the skin itself, the flesh, blood, fat, marrow and bone, are all made of earth, water and fire, whereas the life breath is produced by the sky, water and air.
SB Canto 3
The art of writing verse, paṇkti, became manifested from the bone marrow, and that of bṛhatī, another type of verse, was generated from the life-breath of the Lord of the living entities.
Within four months from the date of conception, the seven essential ingredients of the body, namely chyle, blood, flesh, fat, bone, marrow and semen, come into existence. At the end of five months, hunger and thirst make themselves felt, and at the end of six months, the fetus, enclosed by the amnion, begins to move on the right side of the abdomen.
SB Canto 4
My dear faultless Vidura, in that rainfall there was blood, mucus, pus, stool, urine and marrow falling heavily before Dhruva Mahārāja, and there were trunks of bodies falling from the sky.
The body itself is covered by seven coverings, namely skin, muscle, fat, blood, marrow, bone and semen.
There are many parts of the body—the senses, the limbs, the skin, the muscles, blood, marrow, etc.—and all these are considered here figuratively as sons, grandsons, citizens and dependents.
SB Canto 5
A person who is born into a responsible family—such as a kṣatriya, a member of royalty or a government servant—but who neglects to execute his prescribed duties according to religious principles, and who thus becomes degraded, falls down at the time of death into the river of hell known as Vaitaraṇī. This river, which is a moat surrounding hell, is full of ferocious aquatic animals. When a sinful man is thrown into the River Vaitaraṇī, the aquatic animals there immediately begin to eat him, but because of his extremely sinful life, he does not leave his body. He constantly remembers his sinful activities and suffers terribly in that river, which is full of stool, urine, pus, blood, hair, nails, bones, marrow, flesh and fat.
SB Canto 7
The living entity can live merely by his own power, without the help of skin, marrow, bone, blood and so on, because it is said, asaṇgo'yaṁ puruṣaḥ—the living entity has nothing to do with the material covering.
It appears that the soul can exist even through the bones, as shown by the personal example of Hiraṇyakaśipu. When great yogīs are in samādhi, even when their bodies are buried and their skin, marrow, blood and so on have all been eaten, if only their bones remain they can exist in a transcendental position.
SB Canto 10.1 to 10.13
The body (the total body and the individual body are of the same composition) may figuratively be called "the original tree." From this tree, which fully depends on the ground of material nature, come two kinds of fruit—the enjoyment of happiness and the suffering of distress. The cause of the tree, forming its three roots, is association with the three modes of material nature—goodness, passion and ignorance. The fruits of bodily happiness have four tastes—religiosity, economic development, sense gratification and liberation—which are experienced through five senses for acquiring knowledge in the midst of six circumstances: lamentation, illusion, old age, death, hunger and thirst. The seven layers of bark covering the tree are skin, blood, muscle, fat, bone, marrow and semen, and the eight branches of the tree are the five gross and three subtle elements—earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intelligence and false ego. The tree of the body has nine hollows—the eyes, the ears, the nostrils, the mouth, the rectum and the genitals—and ten leaves, the ten airs passing through the body. In this tree of the body there are two birds: one is the individual soul, and the other is the Supersoul.
SB Cantos 10.14 to 12 (Translations Only)
What difference is there between ordinary worms and persons who try to enjoy this material body composed of skin, flesh, blood, muscle, fat, marrow, bone, stool, urine and pus?
Other Books by Srila Prabhupada
Krsna, The Supreme Personality of Godhead
Bhagavad-gita As It Is Lectures
Now Kṛṣṇa is giving a practical way of understanding the presence of soul. He says, yena sarvam idaṁ tatam: "One thing, which is spread all over the body, that is avināśi." That means immortal. So what is that which is spread all over the body? It is not the skin, not the... This is also spread over the body. The skin, the bone, the marrow, the blood—they are also spread over the body, but Kṛṣṇa is not meaning this material things. The actual active principle within this body is the spirit soul.
We are eating. How this eating, I mean, the substance is transformed into different secretion and again blood, again flesh, again bone? How these are, we do not know. But it is actually happening. Anvayād itarataḥ. I know that I am eating, but itarataḥ, how this eating substance are transformed into bones, marrow, stool, I do not know. Therefore I am not abhijña. But about Kṛṣṇa it is said, abhijña. "He knows everything."
We are completely dependent on Kṛṣṇa. Otherwise why a man is extraordinarily intelligent, another is not? Why this difference? He... Constitutionally, if you study the body of the intelligent man and the less intelligent man, the anatomy and physiological conditions, you will find the same—the same blood, same bone, same marrow, same muscle, same skin, same veins running, same heart, everything. But why one man is less intelligent and another is very, very highly intelligent? Why this difference? Because the supply of intelligence is by Kṛṣṇa. That is said in the Bhagavad-gītā. Mattaḥ smṛtir jñānam apohanaṁ ca (BG 15.15). If Kṛṣṇa is favorable, you will get the right intelligence at the right moment. Otherwise you will miss. This is the position.
Kuṇape. Kuṇape means a bag. This body is a bag. What is is made of? Now, it is made of flesh, bone, marrow, and nerves, and stool, urine, and so many things, blood. So I am not this blood. I am not this urine, I am not this stool. This is the composition of the body. But one is thinking, "I am this body. I am stool. I am urine. I am blood. I am flesh. I am this and that."
Conversations and Morning Walks
1974 Conversations and Morning Walks
Dr. Patel: But still, I mean personally, for myself, I don't have any taste for any food. In fact I have been taking all the food together just like the sannyāsīs and I don't have any taste. But still I have from within me I don't find that form of sex carrying out even though I am a scientist.
Prabhupāda: Yes. Caitanya Mahāprabhu used to say that "Sex life is so strong that even if I see one wooden female form I become excited."
Dr. Patel: I feel the same thing.
Prabhupāda: Yes. So this is not unnatural. Caitanya Mahāprabhu tells this because this cannot be avoided. But by knowledge it can be avoided.
Dr. Patel: We were talking the same thing.
Prabhupāda: Yes, by knowledge. Yes. But "Because I am excited, therefore I have to do this," that is not good.
Dr. Patel: But then I found out the solution for this. As soon as you feel excitement... (break) Then you have nothing to do with it.
Prabhupāda: Therefore knowledge.
Dr. Patel: That I have started practicing this for some time. And I feel a great solace in that.
Prabhupāda: That has been recommended by Śaṇkarācārya, that "Why you are attracted by these forms? It is only a combination of flesh and marrow. That's all."
Dr. Patel: No, but who is attracted? The indriya is attracted. I am beyond indriya. That also you think. (break)
Prabhupāda: So long we are associated... The example I have given many times, that I am sitting on a car, and the car there is accident. I am not car. Still, I am excited, "Oh, my car is lost. Why you have struck my car?" There is so much quarrel. But it is a fact, he knows that "I am not the car." That is called abhiniveśa.
1976 Conversations and Morning Walks
Caraṇāravindam: I have also some and some different seeds to plant.
Prabhupāda: Tomato, squash.
Caraṇāravindam: You would like to see growing in your garden a little sabji?
Prabhupāda: Yes. It is very... Cucumber. These things can be grown very easily. And zucchini. Called zucchini?
Hari-śauri: Yes. It's like a small marrow, zucchini.
Caraṇāravindam: I would like to get, I don't know...
Prabhupāda: No, there is not much place here.
1977 Conversations and Morning Walks
Prabhupāda: This body is composition of three dhātu, kapha, pitta, vāyu, according to Āyur Veda; and according to medical science, it is skin and then muscle, blood, bone, and marrow, stool, urine, those, combination. So I am not this combination of stool, bone, skin, blood. But people are taking that. When they are diseased, they take care of the body. Of course, it is not that we should not take care. But that is superficial. Real care should be taken of the soul within the body.