Last Updated: July 27, 2017

Definition - What does Bhokta mean?

Bhokta is a Sanskrit term used to describe a type of consciousness, mind state or awareness in yogic philosophy.

In the Samkhya school of yoga, which teaches dualism and distinguishes between the two independent realities of purusha and prakriti, bhokta is an important concept. According to Samkhya, prakriti is the source of the physical world, and purusha its consciousness. An element of purusha is that of the passive enjoyer or perceiver. Bhokta can also be likened to the individual self and is sometimes considered analogous to the Western concept of the psyche.

Yogapedia explains Bhokta

Bhokta is considered the lower self, rather than the higher Self. In bhokta, the individuated consciousness falsely identifies with the body, mind and thoughts, and as such, becomes entangled in enjoying or engaging with experiences, both pleasant and unpleasant. It has lost sight of its own perfection and is not aware that these experiences are an illusion.

Bhokta has the faculties of sense perception and, thus, can feel sensations that are enjoyable or uncomfortable. It is said that through the door of the senses and sense perception, the consciousness of bhokta is turned outward to the external world. Its overall world perception is a combination of consciousness, intellect, ego and mind, which are collectively known as the “inner instrument.”

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