This post is how to create and animate your astral shadow. Astral shadows have several uses but these two are quite common,
- If you wish to use the astral pathways to travel.
- If you wish to create an astral guard for yourself while you are busy doing something.
Creating an astral shadow self is a two step process.
- First is to create an exact copy of your astral self. Your astral self is composed of the subtle-body and the causal body (You leave behind the gross anna-mai-kosh). For creating an astral copy of yourself you need to know how you look on the astral planes. Every tiny detail has to be replicated. You focus and create this copy of your subtle body.
- The second step is animating this astral self. You pull out the consciousness from your current body and put it into the astral shadow body you have created. Thus it gets animated and you have consciously left your physical gross body anna-mai-kosh. Your physical body is not dead, the soul is connected to it by a ‘silvery cord’. It is actually more golden-silvery-shimmery. Or you can animate it for a specific task which can be ‘programmed’ into it, here you don’t transfer your entire consciousness.
All this requires a significant amount of energy. To create the astral self and then animate it. So think twice about why you are doing this. Then there are the dangers of the astral, so you should never never attempt these things alone. Always have your real-live teacher guiding you.
So this post is, in a way, just for information.
Some of us travel astrally at night. Here we are doing it under the control of the sub-conscious mind. This impacts on the physical body after you wake up, like typical pressures on the head, intense body pain, nausea etc. Creating and using an astral shadow self is different as you are doing it under the control of the conscious mind. But the physical symptoms will occur, be prepared for this.
The easiest way is to use the Chhaya-sadhana method. I have written about how to focus on your shadow as a spiritual practice in my earlier post here. Do read it. I had mentioned that tantriks use this method to create a shadow of themselves. If you do this shadow-practice for 21 days with full focus and intention, you will sense your after-image projected into the skies becoming more than just an after-image. This now starts becoming a ‘chhaya-purush’, an astral replica of yourself. Depending on how strong your mental energies are, this chhaya-purush will become stronger and more defined. It might take upto 6 months to get the highest possible details. As you practice and focus deeply, you will be able to call your chhaya-purush at your third-eye chakra at any time you want to.
Till this point this exercise can be done by everyone. Recognising your astral self and being aware of it, is a good thing for the student of the occult.
Now you know that your personal soul/ jiv-atma or personal consciousness, resides at the third eye chakra. The ajnya chakra is very important for just this reason. If you are able to visualise your finely detailed chhaya-purush in your third-eye chakra, you can easily transfer your entire personal consciousness into it. Understand this statement. You are transferring your complete consciousness into an astral shadow. You will be seeing, working, moving out of this shadow. So the first thing you will see is your material body sitting in front of you, without animation. So even if you are not scared of anything, this is one thing which will scare and scare badly, guaranteed.
Removing the consciousness from the physical body and putting it into the shadow is a mental process. You visualise it, intend it and it happens. There is no need for any ritual or ceremony. However before attempting something like this, it is always better to cleanse the room, this will reduce interference. Switch off the lights, as darkness and silence allow greater focus. Sit on your asan, meditate or breath deeply a few times. Request energy and help from your source of faith, your favourite deity, etc. Concentrate in your third eye chakra and call in your chhaya-purush. It will float in front of you. Now visualise yourself exiting your material body and entering your shadow. You will. Also keep track of the silvery cord linking the two bodies now onwards. Go wherever you want to and do whatever it is. After you finish, follow the silvery cord back to your physical body and just visualise entering it again. After you re-enter, remember to dissolve the shadow. This is all about intention so be very clear about what you are thinking/ feeling/ intending.
You have travelled astrally consciously.
After you return, the body will feel the strain. There will be a dull ache all over, a point of pressure within your skull etc. This should resolve eventually. But to set all your bodies back properly you will have to do some self-healing. (I like using the extended form of Gayatri Mantra for this, as it fixes the bodies back within each other perfectly.)
However you don’t need to push your entire consciousness into your astral shadow. Intending that it goes and does something is rather a small task so you can just programme it and send it off. It will be less draining than transferring your consciousness completely. eg If you want to create a guard shadow as a watchman while you are busy, you will programme your chhaya-purush accordingly. You will instruct it to look for danger/ disturbance coming towards you from all the 10 directions, east, west, north, south, NE, NW, SE, SW, up and down. It will remain inert and watchful. In case of psychic attack it will respond by fighting back. Just remember that it is your projection, your energy, so as it gets battered while fighting astrally you will feel the effects too. When you pull it back into yourself, you will gain a report of what it was doing or what did it observe.
Then there is the second method which is used by western occultists. I haven’t used it, my brother has. (He experiments, he used to take more risks when he was younger.)
So the basic theory remains the same. But here you visualise an exact physical body, same as yours, right down to your nails and hair! In chhaya-sadhana you use a mantra, the energy of the sun/moon, your chakras and things. In this second method you are simply focussing on your physical appearance. Look at your actual physical body in the mirror. Try to remember how you look. Close your eyes and re-create your physical image here. Imagine every bit of your physical body strongly. As you do this intensely, maybe a 6 month time-frame, and you will be able to call on your exact physical like-ness to the tinest detail to your third eye.
Once you have achieved this, the further process remains the same. You pull out the consciousness from your third eye chakra and put it in your visualised body. It also separates just as easily and you will be able to move into the astral dimensions using it. And yes, the visual of your actual physical body sitting like a mass of flesh will unnerve you at first.
There are a lot of things around us. The astral dimensions are not peaceful glowy lights and soft music. There are very real dangers there. Things which attack the mind. If you get scared or emotional or feel disgust or anything for that matter you are in trouble. Most of us have no need to fiddle about with these things. And even for those of us who are required by karma to get involved with the invisible, proper guidance is essential. You need a live person teacher in front of you while actually attempting these antics.
So whoever it was who asked this question on astral projection start by building up your mind. Learn to keep your emotions, your feelings, your mind in your absolute control. This is not easy, but yes, if you build yourself up and practice you will be able to do create your astral shadow, animate and use it.
There is a fundamental difference between methods which use Sanskrit mantra and those which do not. If you are not using Mantra, the energy of the process becomes tamasik, ultimately damaging the practitioner. In India too, there are several dubious people/ tantriks who work with entities, spirit slaves etc. This is very dangerous.
There are several movies which show entities fighting back and harming the exorcists. This happens if you do not use the energy of Sanskrit Mantra. My brothers and I use the energy of Mantra-s, intentions, the blessings of our Devi and our Guru. Thus we do not get harmed in anything that we do. We dedicate all that we do to the Ultimate Parabrahma so that we do not attract karma.
The secret of all Tantra is clarity of intention and the power of your mind. This comes only with regular spiritual practice.