By Abhijeet Kislay
As per the small booklet “The MIND and its control” by Swami Budhananda, the mind in its functional aspect has four faculties:
1. Manas is that modification of the internal instrument (antahkarana) which considers the pros and cons of a subject.
2. Buddhi is that modification of the internal instrument which determines.
3. Citta is that modification of the internal instrument which remembers.
4. Ahamkara is that modification of the inner instrument which is characterized by self-consciousness.
The Ahamkara (translated as Ego in English) is the function of the mind which tries to appropriate actions done by various parts of the body-mind to a central Identity (the small self). This function of the mind, as such, is not a bad thing. It is because of this function that we can as a unified single perform actions in the world.
A simple example would be:
While working say in the office, we don’t say that, “Oh it is my hand that is typing the document and it is my eyes that is reviewing the email.” Rather, we say that I typed the document and I reviewed the email.