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(Śarīra) A Sanskrit word meaning “body.” The term is used in conjunction with the constitution of a human being, particularly the personality, sometimes called the “lower quaternary” (as contrasted with the “upper triad”: atma-buddhi-manas). Four such bodies are identified in Indian philosophy: (1) the sthula-sarira or dense (i.e., physical) body, (2) the linga-sarira or “matrix body” (called in theosophical literature the “etheric double”), (3) the suksma-sarira or “subtle body” (called in early theosophical literature “kama-manas” and in later theosophical literature separated into the “astral body” or body of emotions and “lower mental body”), and (4) the karana-sarira or “causal body,” i.e., the reincarnating soul (called in later theosophical literature the “higher mental body”). 

See also Human Constitution; UPADHI; Kosa.

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