Facts, thoughts, sentiments, opinions, beliefs, values, ideals, ideas, and concepts that guide our conscious thinking, conceptualizing and decision-making processes.


Imagination: Purely creative thoughts and Chakras Outside the Body.


Definition : The semi-conscious sensations, urges, desires, feelings, emotions, and attitudes. The vital provides the energy for human action and expresses itself through attraction, liking, desire and enthusiasm.

Functioning: It (1) is where we experience the vital sensation of the central nervous system, our primal urges, desires, and fears; (2) where we experience our feelings, emotions, and passions of life; and (3) is is where the emotions are processed into emotional thought, i.e. into the emotions' perception of knowledge, and it is where our attitudes, our life intelligence, and higher emotions reside.


Definition : The subconscious awareness and impulses of the body expressed in animal instincts, basic drives of human nature, and inherited character traits. The primary drives of the physical are for self-preservation and reproduction. 

Functioning: It is (1) that which gives us material form, our raw physical existence, consisting of matter ; (2) i t is where our movements originate; (3) it is the seat of our physical urges and sensations, and (4) it is where the body learns how to act, i.e. where it learns the primary skills needed for existence.




Pure Mental
(The mind proper )

Ideas, Concepts, Rational Thinking, Logical, Rational Thinking, Pure Thought, Conscious Self-conception

Vital Mental
(The vital part of the mental plane)

Knowledge of Life's Workings;
Knowledge Imbued with Feeling, Emotion
(interests, opinions, sentiments, beliefs, values, and ideals)

Physical Mental
(The physical part of the mental plane)

Input, Processing, Organizing, Storage of Sense Data
(for understanding, comprehension;
practical knowledge; used for decision making)


Mental Vital
(The mental part of the vital plane)

  Emotional Thought as Attitudes, Life Intelligence, Higher Emotions
(including conduct, social norms, conscience)

Pure Vital
(Vital proper)

Emotions, Feelings, Passions, Intense Human Relationships

Physical Vital
(The physical part of the vital plane)

Sensation of the Nerves
(urge, desire, fear; seeks action, relationship, expansion,
adventure, acquisition, conquest, and enjoyment)

Physical (Body)

Mental Physical
(The mental part of the physical plane)

Body Knowledge of How to Act, Primary Skills of Existence

Vital Physical
(The vital part of the physical plane)

Physical Urges and Sensation
(pain, hunger, lust, craving,  possessiveness, territoriality, attraction/repulsion, etc.)

Pure Physical
(The physical proper )

-Origins of Physical Movement, Instinct for Survival
-Inconscient (i.e. unconscious) Physical Matter



In this table we see a hierarchy of human functioning rising from the physical to the vital to the mental to the spiritual plane. Also, within the four general planes there are three subplanes, each higher than the previous subplane, reflecting an evolution of higher consciousness within that plane.

At the very bottom of the table within the first general plane of the Physical, we see its first subplane, called the Pure Physical (or the physical proper). At that plane we are speaking of the raw matter of the physical body. It is the inconscient matter (passed on from our animal ancestry, itself from primitive life forms, on back to water, light, gas, mineral, to the solid matter of earth.)  It is also in this plane that there is the origins of movement of the body, and instinct for survival. This is the primal qualities of the body; hence we call it the Pure Physical level. At the next level up, the Vital Physical (the vital part of the physical plane), we see the emergence of the physical urges and sensations of the body, in the form of pain, hunger, craving, possessiveness, attraction and repulsion. etc. An even higher level up, in terms of more refined substance and higher consciousness is the Mental Physical where the body “stores” its instinctive knowledge of how to act, which are in essence the primary skills of existing and surviving reside.

Beyond the physical/body plane is the Vital plane. It is a substance of subtler substance and higher consciousness than the raw material substance and aspects of the physical plane. Its first subplane is the Physical Vital in the form of sensations of the nerves as urge, desire, and fear. These reflect for the individual in society as action, relationship, adventure, conquest, etc. From this emerges the Pure Vital subplane (i.e. the vital proper) where there is even more subtle substance and consciousness than the previous plane’s sensation of nerves in the form of human emotions, feelings, passions, including their expression of the emergence of intense human relationships in the social sphere. A step up from this is Mental Vital, where there is the development of emotional thought in the form of our personal attitudes, our life intelligence, as well as other higher emotions.

Beyond the vital plane there is the Mental plane, which is unique for the most part to humans. This plane begins with the Physical Mental subplane where there is the most fundamental mental capacity in the form of the processing of thoughts gathered through the inputs of the five senses. This data is gathered, processed, organized, and stored for understanding and comprehension which becomes practical knowledge used for decision making. Beyond this is the subplane of the Vital Mental, in which processed thoughts are developed into a knowledge of life's workings. Here also our gathered knowledge is imbued with feelings and emotions, which takes the form of our interests, opinions, sentiments, beliefs, values, and ideals. Beyond this is the Pure Mental (the mind proper), where mind is engaged in t he development of pure ideas and concepts, pure logical and rational thinking, and the development of ideas into newer insight. There is also here the ability to self-conceive one's or the world's existence, i.e. what he wishes himself, it to be.   (At this plane, there is no longer a dependency on the input of the senses. )

Detailed Account of Three Planes of the Individual 

The table below shows the three planes of an individual -- physical, vital, and mental -- and the breakdown of each these into three sub-aspects in terms of their function, expression, traits, and works. We have numbered these as 1-9 levels, with 1 at the highest level of mind. It is followed by a discussion of how humans evolve up the scale from levels 9 to level 1.



Level #, Level, Level Definition, Function, Expression, Works, Historical


1 PURE MENTAL (The pure mental, Conceptual Mind, Mental mental, Thinking mind, Master of thought, speculative mind)

This where mind is engaged in t he development of pure ideas and concepts, pure logical and rational thinking, and the development of ideas into newer insight. There is also here the ability to self-conceive one's or the world's existence, i.e. what he wishes himself, it to be.   (There is no connection here to the senses of the body here as perceived in the sense mind below. It is pure thought.)

Pure mind not related to emotion or body. Pure ideas, conceptual thinking, organization of ideas

Concepts, ideas, possibilities, mental skills, movement toward pure understanding, accomplishment by comprehension. One reflects on mystery of the universe, meaning of one's place in creation.

logical, insightful.  Skills -- Decision making, planning, problem-solving, writing related to pure thought

Philosopher, philosophy, mathematics, theoretical physics

2 VITAL MENTAL (The vital part of the mental plane, emotional mind, sense mind)

This is where we gain a knowledge of life's workings; where the practical organized knowledge and comprehension of facts of level 3 is imbued with the emotions and feelings that turn organized comprehension into our interests, sentiments, values, and ideals.


Mental emotions, interests, opinions, beliefs, values, sentiments, idolization of ideas, idealism, passion for a goal, patriotism

Idealism , inquisitiveness, resourcefulness, determination, mental-based devotion, scrupulous (in details), loyalty , naivety , tolerance , open-minded. Values -- honesty, integrity, open-mindedness, harmony, concern for others, tolerance, perfection, practicality, self-reliance, freedom, democracy, family-feeling, community, perfection, etc.

Poet, high poetry, social sciences, inspiration of music

3 PHYSICAL MENTAL  (The physical part of the mental plane, the physical mind seated in the brain)

The processing, organizing, systemizing of physical, natural, practical facts of information from the senses into thoughts of understanding, comprehension, and knowledge, used for decision-making, action, and accomplishment.

-Organizes & coordinates facts of physical phenomena that the senses gather, into systems & decisions, to create thoughts. 
-There is a mastery of physical and natural processes. One has the knowledge of the practical. 
-Is where systematic planning for organized action takes place. Seeks material goals. 
- It is the seat of action. 
-There is a thirsting for information and understanding. The mind wants to understand. 
-One can accomplish because there is comprehension. 
- Mind (levels 1,2,3) increasingly governs and directs life and actions. 

Thought facts, mental possessiveness (right, claim), organizer of mankind & society

Awareness, naivety, brilliant, learned, stupid?, insightful?

Engineering, medicine, technician, physical sciences , scientist


4 MENTAL VITAL (The mental part of the vital plane, Vital Mind, Master of life)

This is where emotions (of the previous level , level5 ) are processed into emotional thought, the emotions' perception of knowledge. It is where our attitudes, life intelligence, and higher emotions lie. It is the center of our vital skills.

Knowledge of the vital. Emotions' perception of knowledge. Direction and organization of vital energies. Vital perception, vital skill, five senses, speech, attitudes, life intelligence, higher emotions. Processes emotions into emotional thought. Charges decisions with emotion. Monitor of attitudes and emotions. At the service of life goals (rather than one's own ends).

Attitude, social norms, conduct, and conscience.

Generosity, loyalty, cunning, shrewdness, insight, penetration, alertness, resourcefulness, arrogant, devotion, distrustful, paranoid, rudeness, selfishness, shamelessness, stinginess, stubbornness, tolerance, intolerance, vengeful  Skills -- public speaking, leadership

Politician, public leaders, leadership, novelist, businessperson, entrepreneur

5 PURE VITAL (The pure vital, Vital vital, Vital proper)

This is where our feelings, emotions, passion, enthusiasm reside.

Attraction and repulsion of feelings, emotions.

Feelings, emotions, passion. Pure energy. Fears, phobia, possession, superstition. Emotions express in intense human relationships; in achievement.

Enthusiasm, expansiveness, affection, courage, courage of heroic warrior, emotional devotion, fearlessness, fearful, emotional strength, love, passionate, emotional, lively, vigorous, tired, energyless, 

Hero, vital poetry, music, painting

6 PHYSICAL VITAL (The physical part of the vital plane)

This is where we experience the vital sensation of the nerves, the central nervous system, where we experience urge, desire, and fear.

Vital sensation, the nerves, the central nervous system, vital enjoyment, accomplishment by enjoyment

Vital desire, urge, engaging, nervous sensations (e.g. desire, fear), responses, and social behavior, physical devotion, emotional sense of duty. Seeks action, relationship, expansion, adventure, acquisition, conquest, and enjoyment.

Lust, fear, adventurous, acquisitive, domineering, strong?, vain?

Industry, trader


7 MENTAL PHYSICAL (The mental part of the physical plane)

This is the consciousness of the body, where the body learns how to act, where it learns the primary skills needed for existence and action from movement. It is the center of our physical skills.

Physical consciousness: The body's understanding of action. Body becoming conscious. The knowledge of the body (physical skills). Body's knowledge of how to act, the skills needed for survival, ease, and action. (situated in brain). Organizes physical movements. Generates skill out of movements. Learns primary skills for existence. Physical ideas of skills of acting. Skills and capacities seated here. Extracts essence of skill into capacity.

Physical skills of the brain, subconscious knowledge of the body (physiology), voluntary & autonomic. Rustic folklore. 

Stupid, self-taught .  Physical skills -- cleaning, cooking, grooming, walking, etc. 

Artisan, agriculture

8 VITAL PHYSICAL (The vital part of the physical plane)

This is the seat of our physical urges and sensations. It is where nervous sensation, pain, physical urge, hunger, lust, craving, physical possessiveness, and territoriality are rooted.

Physical sensations and urges, emotions of the physical. Experiences attraction and repulsion of physical sensations. Body being moved to act by physical emotions. Energized by that which is painful or pleasurable. 

Nervous sensation, comfort, pain, physical urge, hunger, lust, craving, physical possessiveness, territoriality, war, primitive physical energy, religious superstition. Relationships determined by heredity, family, acquisitive, crude, fearless, passionate, primitive

Lustful, territorial, primitive, lusting, craving, possessive, hungry, bullyish

Laborer. Unskilled, energetic, physical worker.

9 PURE PHYSICAL (The pure physical, the body, raw physical existence, matter)

This is the pure physical, the body itself, our raw physical existence, consisting of matter. It is also where our movements originate.

Body without feeling or awareness; Inconscience. Pure physical matter of the body . Physical movement. Instinct of the bodily functions; animal instincts for survival. Physical act is completed only when it reaches here. Sleep

Beautiful, ugly, healthy, sick, strength (physical), weak (physical), energetic, energy less

Complete material accomplishment. (If transformed, the ultimate fulfillment of the being.)


Explanation of the Evolution of Life in Terms of the Nine Levels

Here we explain how the nine levels of the three main planes -- three levels each of the physical, vital, and mental planes -- emerged in the evolution of life, beginning with subplane 9.

The evolution of life on earth begins in matter, from which first life and later mind emerge as higher principles and powers of consciousness, though in fact both exist in potential, involved, in material substance. The individual too progresses from physical to vital to mental levels of consciousness, each successive phase more conscious than the previous.

The evolution begins with progress in the physical plane of consciousness from level 9 to level 7. Level 9 is the [pure] physical [the Physical Physical], the consciousness of the material body. In this plane, knowledge expresses completely as unconscious instinct of the bodily functions and the animal instincts for survival in an indifferent or hostile environment. The pressure of internal biological needs (hunger, thirst, sleep) and external threats force the individual to energize himself for self-preservation and self-defense. The impact of painful and pleasurable sensations acts as a stimulus to awaken and stir the consciousness and press it into action.

As the consciousness progresses under this pressure and stimulus to level 8, the physical consciousness becomes energized by that which is pleasurable and painful. It learns to avoid the unpleasant and actively seek the comfortable and pleasant. Its actions become embued with the vital intensity of these sensations. The vital principle gives rise to social impulses and relationships between people, such as the institution of marriage which sublimates the physical sex impulse into a social relationship. Human relationships at this level are primarily determined by the bonds of heredity and family. [Level 8 is the Vital Physical]

In level 7, the mental principle emerges in the physical consciousness. Experience gives rise to the acquisition of knowledge in the body, which we call skills. The mind's capacity for organization leads to the organization of physical activities, such as the shift from nomadic hunting to sedentary agriculture. [Level 7 is the Mental Physical]

The movement from level 7 to level 6 is a major transition. The needs of the physical consciousness gradually become subordinated to the needs and urges of the vital consciousness. The vital seeks not only survival, self-preservation and comfort, but also action, relationship, expansion, adventure, conquest and enjoyment. These needs express primarily in the field of social life in the relationships between people -- the urge to dominate or submit, to belong to and be accepted by others, to enjoy and control one's environment. [Level 6 is the Physical Vital]

In level 9 the individual struggles for survival. In level 8 he experiences attraction and repulsion. In level 7 he acquires practical knowledge and skills to improve his chances for survival and ease the burden of existence. The acquisition of this knowledge and the organization of life enables people to reduce the expenditure of energy on mere survival. This excess pushes for fields of expression, looks for something more. In level 6, the life consciousness becomes more alert and dynamic and seeks a greater intensity of enjoyment. The skills of level 7 become energized by the urge for acquisition and expansion. The individual becomes enterprising.

In level 5 the increasing vital energy expresses as an emotional consciousness. The attractions and repulsion of feeling, rather than the attractions and repulsion of physical sensation, become dominant. The individual is powerful drawn to express and find satisfaction for these emotions in human relationship and achievement. [Level 5 is the Pure Vital, the Vital Vital]

The forging of intense emotional relationships is always unstable and insecure as long as both parties are on an equal footing. The strong emotional ego seeks greater intensity and security by attaining a higher level of control and domination over others. The weaker ego seeks the security of obeying a strong leader. In level 4 the mental element emerges strongly in the vital consciousness and gives a higher direction and organization to the expression of the vital energies. The entrepreneur and leader emerge. In this plane mind is fully at the service of life goals, not free to seek after its own ends. [Level 4 is the Mental Vital]

The transition from level 4 to level 3 is a movement from a consciousness in which feelings and emotions dominate to one in which the mind increasingly governs and directs life and action. Level 3 is the plane of the physical mind. Mind here is fully absorbed with the external world, with seeking after material goals and understanding physical phenomena. The mental principle develops the capacity for systematic planning leading to organized action.

The true seeking and accomplishment for Mind is comprehension, not merely survival or conquest. Mind wants to understand. In level 3, the quest for understanding focuses on the mastery of physical and natural processes. The mind's excess energy expresses as a thirst for more and more information and understanding. [Level 3 is the Physical Mental]

Mind's quest for comprehension is as insatiable as the vital's thirst for enjoyment. As it masters the physical world, it turns increasingly to the complex richness and subtlety of the human relationships and emotions, giving rise to poetry, art and music in level 2, where the emotions lend to mind a richness and intensity that thought alone lacks. [Level 3 is the Vital Mental]

At a higher level, the mental consciousness seeks for a pure knowledge that is not diluted either by the practical utility of level 3 or the emotional subjectivity of level 2. That quest for pure knowledge gives birth to the ideas and concepts of level 1. Here mental man living in the material animal body reflects self-consciously on the mystery of the universe and the meaning of his own place in creation. [Level 3 is the Pure Mental, the Physical Mental]

This movement from level 9 to 1 describes the emergence of an increasingly powerful, awakened and conscious energy in man giving rise to an increasing capacity for self-preservation, enjoyment and comprehension. However, the ascending movement is only one side of the process. At each stage of ascent, there is also a corresponding descent of the newly emerging principle of consciousness to change the character of life at the previous level. The skills of level 7 are expressed to support the survival instinct of level 8. The emotional strength of level 4 is applied to the activities of level 5 and 6. The knowledge of level 3 is used to aggrandize life and master the physical environment.
For Additional Details of 1-9 levels, please click here.

Additional Thoughts: Measuring A Person for Each of the Nine Levels

Is it then possible to take any person and determine what their status is vis a vis each of these levels? We believe there is. An individual can be rated across each of the nine levels by determining their capacities at that level. For each of the levels we have determined that two ratings should be created, and then the two combined. First, the person would be measured in terms of their strength at each level. Second, at that level of strength for the level, we would determine if that degree of strength was positive or negative (i.e. "good" or "Bad"). Then the two figures at each level would be combined to create a complete rating of that individual for each level.

For example, a person could be rated on a scale of 1-10 for each level in terms of the propensity at that level, i.e. their strength at that level. So at level 1 the individual could rate a 7, at level 2 a 6, and so forth all the way up the scale. Then we would need to determine if that person's rating at that level was good or bad, i.e. positive or negative. This is because at that level they can express their propensity in a positive way or a negative way. For example, someone strong at level 8 (say a 9 rating) can be moved to emotional action of the body in a good way or a bad way; e.g. in a way that helps others or hurts others. So the 9 rating at level 8 could be listed in the following way: --9+++ (or perhaps better as 9 -1). In other words, at the 9 rating, there are two negative indicators, as well as three positive indicators (for a sum of one negative indicator). (It would probably require a rather large questionnaire to accurately fix the person at each level, in terms of both strength and positive and negative.

The next question then is what to do with that number. Can we realistically use that number to understand that individual? Can we use that number to help the person rise to the next level among the nine levels, or better yet to rise to higher levels of accomplishment, success, and joy in life. Our conclusion at this point is that the best way to make improvements in life is to follow the process of growth approach to the development of the individual, and then use the model above as a way to measure the person. This change in the person through the process of development will be reflected in updated changes in the ratings of each level for that person. The makeup of the individual across the nine levels will update as the process of growth continues.