One of the standpoints for “purity” in the Indian philosophical tradition is “inclusion”. This is one reason that a concept such as “Brahman” (that which is encompassive) is used to indicate the nature of what is truly real.
Thought or any function or activity that comes from duality and binary nature of thinking and living is considered to be producing endless sorrow and pain.
The binary of “pure” and “impure” itself is a product of binary nature of how the world is experienced and interpreted by the mind.
That is really pure is that which includes both the duals and transcends them.
And this is one reason, texts like Drgdrsyaviveka, or Nirvanashatkam enlists a series of psychological entities that progressively leads to awareness and the witness consciousness (Saakshi).
Interestingly both from the metaphysical realm of consciousness, and the aesthetic experience of true beauty, there is no duality and no impurity … and every experience, and every thought from that transcendental and inclusive state of awareness is an expression of joy and creative energy …
So, one could say, both the ideas of “purity” and “impurity” is a dividing dual and thus perhaps “impure”. And from the transcendental point of view of consciousness, and aesthetic rasa, there is nothing which is pure or impure in an isolated manner. Every expression is a spark of self-less joy ….
We use the duals as labels profusely, in daily life. Isnt it?
Do these duals have the power to take us forward, or at least liberate us from the very pains created by the isolated duals?
Duals indicate each other, in each’s existence. And thus in that sense, for a reflecting mind it gives the scope of seeing the opposite or the other in an inclusive context.
But whether a mind exercises such a reflective possibility will depend upon something very interesting …
Let me try to imagine what that is a bit more …
Thoughts exist in “she”, “he” and “it”. And in a general and easy manner we (Indian philosophy) describe everything (animate and inanimate) as “brimming with life” (sa-chetanam).
Where does Thoughts exist?
One can say Thoughts exist in awareness.
Thoughts also can exist with awareness.
When they exist with awareness, each thought, or a collection of thoughts (= perspective) becomes soaked in awareness in different degrees, and thus exhibits the most beautiful of human (or other forms of life too) capabilities such as sensibility, sensitivity, empathy, openness, wisdom, understanding holistically, acknowledging the other, including the other and so on … and all these in total called as an “inclusive” and participatory approach.
The more the Thoughts are accompanied with awareness they get the magical power to include the opposite and the other, by perceiving in a context, and with the help of the rush of awareness transcend to another level of thinking which is inhered by being.
Thoughts when not are with awareness they become isolated, alienated, divisive, judgmental, and manipulative.
The power of Thought is that it is not limited only to a thinking process, but can affect the whole process and way of living.
Thus perhaps the re-humanisation and culturisation process is to infuse Thoughts with more and more awareness, contextualise and watch them in actual living.
Interestingly, the process of infusing Thoughts with more awareness (which happens through watchfulness, reflection, and creating perspectives that are more inclusive and open) gives also an epistemological tool for us – the power to both analyse or see the details, and hold all of them in the delicate cupped palm of holism – to see discretely as well as see holistically – that is the magic of mind to behold two different (and perhaps seemingly opposite) powers of mind at the same time.
But then for the mind to partake from that magic, the Magician has to be invited, nurtured and housed continously – the Magician aka “Awareness” the closest kin of Consciousness …
Let us make 2020 an year infused with more Awareness, and enrich not only our thinking process, but the manner in which we build our perspectives, and live our lives.
Happy New Year.