I’m reading a book called The Way of Qigong by Kenneth S. Cohen. I’m on a section called Describing the Ineffable. Allow me to take a section here and share it with you.
“It is interesting that the Sanskrit word for intellect, vikalpa, means to divide and break apart. Our English word “matter” is from another Sanskrit word, the root ma, meaning the illusions (maya) created by intellect as it confuses these bits and pieces and descriptions with that which is described-the experience. The word or concept “tree” is obviously not the same as the acutal tree. When we experience a tree, we see the earth it grows in, the play of sunlight and wind in the branches, the ants climbing up the trunk, and all of this is coloured by our feelings, memories, and associations. The actual tree is not a static, unchanging concept, but a fluid, always changing experience. By definition, the intellect can never understand the whole.”
Sankalpa is a positive resolve/intention you wish to see manifest in your life, you use it in Yoga Nidra when the body and mind are relaxed. If you’ve read my Learn More page I’ve written a bit about my experience with Sankalpa and how when I tried to define my resolve with words or “the intellect”, it didn’t seem to stick. Perhaps like the tree, Sankalpa needs to be the observed experience not the broken down understanding of it. This section of the book reminded me of something I read in my psychology studies. That memories impress upon us on different levels depending on the connection we are able to make to them. The experience of something (the experience of your Sankalpa) is always far more impressionable than any level of intellect.