Mind is a function within the individualized consciousness with its own manifold potentialities, same as spices having taste in them. That consciousness is the subtle or ethereal body. When it becomes gross, it appears to be a physical or material body. That individualized consciousness itself is known as the individual soul (Jivatma) when the potentialities are in an extremely subtle state.
Like the instrument of a sense, though in intimate contact with that sense, does not perceive that sense as the sense perceives the object, even so Atma is present with the Jivatma in the same body, but the Jivatma does not know the universal witness.
Perception (pratyaksa) is direct knowledge of objects through senses and mind. It is external and internal. The senses come into contact with the objects, the mind with the senses and the ‘I’ consciousness with mind. Knowledge arises as consciousness when mind and the ‘I’ consciousness or atman come into contact. Internal objects like pains and pleasures, likes and dislikes, are known by mind coming directly into contact with them without the aid of senses. Mind directly conveys them to the ‘I’ consciousness.
What cannot come into contact with the senses is not considered an object of sense perception. An individual is no other than the Jivatma in Consciousness. How does the Jivatma perceive the objects outside? On account of the notion of ‘I am’, consciousness abides as Jivatma in the body. When its senses descend upon similar bodies outside itself, there is contact between the two and there is a desire to know and to become one with them. When there is this contact, the object is reflected within itself and the Jivatma perceives this reflection, though it believes that the reflection is outside. The Jiva knows only this reflection, which means it knows itself. This contact is the cause of the perception of the external objects.