Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

There are three basic attributes Gun गुण, Satva, Raja and Tama. The Prakruti, ie the active energy who creates all the manifested is composed of these three building blocks. These three Gun form her ‘body’. When these three are perfectly balanced there is no creation. It is only when there is a spontaneous imbalance in these three, does further creation start. The entire creation is composed of the three Gun ie the Prakruti and this all exists within her. (The top-most dot of the Shri yantra is the unmanifest Ultimate and the next equilateral triangle represents the three Gun getting out of balance and creation starting.) So if you want to know your true reality, the three Gun have to be brought back into perfect balance by conscious use of pran/ vital energy.

Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

The conscious energy of Satva is called Vishnu/ Laxmi and this is linked to the Sun/ Surya. Vishnu is considered to be potential energy and thus masculine. Laxmi is the active principle thus considered feminine and the wife of Vishnu. The Raja gun has potential energy called Brahmadev and active energy called Sarasvati who is his wife. Raja Gun is connected to Agni/ Fire. The Tama gun is similarly linked to Shiv, his wife Shakti and the Moon/ Chandra.

These three Gun mix, suppress, produce, exist, support, separate, unite, recombine with each other in every way possible and in varying proportions to create the manifested reality. All things you see in this universe are created, maintained, evolved/destroyed because of these interactions. These three Gun are inter-linked and yet independent of each other.

  • Satva is the essence of intelligence, consciousness at all levels, it is linked to the deep pleasure of knowing that you are the Ultimate, it illuminates.
  • Raja is energy of motion and is linked to pain, it activates. This ‘pain’, is the pain which one feels when one is convinced that he is separated from the Ultimate.
  • Tama is the inertia of solidity, dullness and indicates delusion, it restrains.

If you study the process of creation, the Satva and Tama by themselves are inert, they are incapable of working by themselves. They are animated by the Raja gun. ‘Movement’ is the real reason creation occurs. Raja gun is the intelligent energy of movement. (What is the source of the spontaneous initial movement is something everyone has to experience for himself as it cannot be described in the language of the manifested creation. It was ‘before’ creation occurred.)

In your spiritual practice when your Kundalini crosses the Vahni mandal, the circle of conscious fire, the Vishnu granthi/knot and moves beyond the Muladhar and Swadhisthan chakras, you gain control over the Raja Gun. You gain control over the energy of movement. Now onwards the movement of your mind, body, internal pran remains in your conscious control. If you control ‘movement’ in its subtlest aspects, you can control everything. You can now move things, thoughts, emotions, vibrations, gross and subtle things with precise control. Or precisely stop their movements. This is a very important step in your spiritual progress. After this, your path gets slightly less bumpy. In the Bhagwat Gita, this step is described as the fall of Bhishma.

  • It is only Raja gun which has the energy to overcome the inertia of Tama. The solidity of Tama can be harnessed only by Raja. If Tama is the delusion that you are separate from the Ultimate Reality, then this delusion is also powered by Raja. Higher the energy of inertia, lower is the consciousness, lower is the life-form eg stones and soil. All resistance to movement and the stability of mass is Tama.
  • Raja is necessary for the Satva to operate. Raja provides a substratum for Satva gun to project its intelligence on. Satva is conscious intelligence, but it still needs the energy provided by Raja to display its intelligence, to move! If Satva is the understanding that you are the same as the Eternal Reality, then this is also powered by Raja. If the consciousness is powered higher, the inertia is lower and this self-awareness is higher eg aspirants on the spiritual path. All conscious creatures are more Satva – powered.

When you observe some thing, look for inertia, energy and consciousness. One will dominate over the other 2, this will be its predominant Gun. Everything can be classified as Satva-dominant, Raja-dominant or Tama-dominant. Even thoughts, emotions, the subtle to the gross, the tangible to the intangible is dominated by one of these three. You can observe yourself to know more about your overall tendency. This requires a lot of personal introspection and the ability to focus dispassionately.

  • Eg a stone has high inertia, lower energy and lowest intelligence, so it is Tama dominant.
  • Eg a genuinely kind and gracious human being will have lowest inertia, he has reduced inactivity. His mind will be less prone to random fluctuation as he focusses on his and others higher selves. Thus he becomes Satva-dominant. (You become kind when you realise that you and everything else is essentially the same).

 

Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

Raja is the energy present in the universe and the energy in all the things present in this universe. The energy of multiple forms of life and things we see are all products of Raja acting on Satva and Tama. Evolution, transformation, change and all its aspects are Raja. Fire, heat, force, motion, kinetic energy, electricity, magnetism, friction, etc is Raja. The pran/vital energy flowing in you is Raja. Understanding this concept is very important for the spiritual aspirant. If you can control the Raja gun, you can control the direction of your evolution. You can control the movement of pran in your body. Raja gun is the kinetic energy at all levels of existences.

Raja is Agni. Agni is the conscious energy of fire and is responsible for all kinds of movement and transformations at all levels. So we worship Agni in all ways possible. The Sanskrit mantras which we use also are fiery, they transform, push, pull, change, move. In all our compulsory ‘Right-Actions’, Sanskar, Fire /Agni is the witness. For any ritual in Sanatan Dharm, the presence of Agni is essential. There are 16 Sanskars in Sanatan Dharm aka Hinduism. The first is the Garbh-dharan Sanskar where the would-be parents are charged with energy so that they can conceive a happy healthy baby. And the last is the Anteyshti Sanskar where the discarded body is given to the conscious energies of Agni/ Fire and the flowing waters/ Aap.

Now the foundational mantra of Sanatan Dharm is the Gayatri mantra.

Om, Bhuh Bhuvah Swah, Om Tat Savitur Varenyam, Bhargo Devasya Dheemahi, Dhiyo Yo nah Prachodayat, Om.

ॐ भूः भुवः स्वः । ॐ तत्सवितुर्वरेण्यम । भर्गो देवस्य धीमहि। धियो यो नः प्रचोदयात॥ ॐ

This mantra is linked to the Devi Sarasvati. She is the active principle of Raja-gun. When you recite this mantra, do its jaap, and ultimately repeat it for 27 lakh times, you gain control over the Raja gun, the active principle of energy, transformation, creation and change. This is the biggest tool which you can possibly possess! Armed with this mantra, go on and do your spiritual practice and see how things move or stop moving as per your conscious will.

(For boys a ‘Anushthan’ is performed at the age of 6-7yrs, this is called the Upnayan Sanskar or Yadnopavit or the ‘thread ceremony’. This is a ritual with intention that the boy will perform the 27 lakh times Gayatri mantra repeat in his life-time. For girls on the 6th birthday, she is taught the Gayatri mantra and she is also supposed to recite this 27 lakh times. In these ‘modern’ time, we have clean forgotten to teach our girls and even for the boys only few families do all this. It is a very great loss to humanity.)

Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

People say in spiritual practice, ‘increase Satva-gun’ and ‘keep away from Tamasic stuff’. But how? You cannot increase Satva just like that as it is incapable of movement by itself. It is a lump of energy just sitting there! And how to reduce tama-gun or keep away from it? It is also a lump of energy sitting there. You have to move! Movement and complete control on movement is essential for spiritual practice. You have to start everything by application of Raja-gun. And Gayatri mantra is the most powerful way you can use Raja-gun consciously.

So recite the Gayatri mantra at least 27 times twice a day! It takes less than 5 minutes. Try to consciously invoke the power of Devi Sarasvati in yourself. She is the intelligent energy of motion, of Agni. She is the junior school teacher who starts you on your spiritual route. if you pass her test at the Brahma-granthi, you will be promoted. She will be followed by Devi Laxmi at middle-school, here the syllabus will be Satva-gun. If you transcend this, you will be allowed entry into high school where the syllabus will change to Tama-gun. Devi Shakti teaches high-school. The college teacher will be Devi Lalita Tripur-sundari herself. Once you pass her exams you realise that all through you yourself were your own teacher, you were the syllabus and you are everything and more.

But all this only after you first learn, understand and experience the Gayatri mantra in all its subtlety.

‘Saraswati namasyami, chetanam hrudi samsthitam’ सरस्वती नमसयामि चेतनाम ह्रदि संस्थितां  is how one of my favourite stotra on Sarasvati starts.

  • Sarasvati – Sarasvati is ‘celestial brilliance, intelligence flowing, movement, motion, power, expression’
  • Namasyami – Sarasvati is ‘the face, opening, entrance, presence of Ultimate.’ (The Ultimate is a paradox of illusion and wisdom united together. Depth of stillness and flowing movement together. The eternal unborn one in solitude)
  • Chetanaam – Sarasvati is ‘the consciousness, fire, awareness, conspicuously visible sentience’
  • Hrudi – She is the awareness ‘in the individual soul, in the the third eye Ajnya chakra, in the Center of this Ajnya chakra
  • Samsthitam – Sarasvati is ‘the foundation and conclusion’.

So Sarasvati is the flowing celestial intelligence of movement, at the opening of the route to the Ultimate. She is the ever alert fiery awareness at who is the foundation and also the conclusion of the individual soul.

The individual soul and its individual personal universe starts when Raja-gun spontaneously moves and creates an apparent separation from the Ultimate. Thus Devi Sarasvati is the energy who Creates. This duality ends when it knows its reality again at the conclusion of a process initiated again by Raja-gun ie Devi Sarasvati.

 

 

Gayatri Mantra, Devi Sarasvati, Raja-gun and Agni

(This is from the Sankhya, from Ayurved and some of my understanding and experience. I know that sometimes I write quite esoteric things which are not available on the Internet or elsewhere. It is my Karma to write, I do it for myself, to rebalance my karmic baggage. But if you are reading it, if it is your karma to read, then know that you should also actively try to practice. You cannot go onward in your spiritual practice just reading my experiences. So here is the link to the most complete form of Gayatri, the Ghanapath. Close your eyes and listen to it. Feel its fire, its heat, its movement, let its rhythm move you.)

 

Light a Lamp, use the power of Agni

All Indian households will perform one activity compulsorily, light a Deep दीप ie a lamp in front of the household deities, or their object of faith, at least once a day. This is so deeply programmed in us that even if we do not really know why, we do it daily. Some households light the lamp twice a day at twilights, ie dawn/dusk and in some, like mine, it burns continuously. Akhand Deep, अखण्डदीप the infinite unbroken illumination.

Light a Lamp, use the power of Agni

Physical light is considered to be similar to the knowledge of Illumination. It primarily removes the darkness and confusion caused by ignorance. You know the true nature of things around and about you once they are brought to light. The ogre under your bed disappears when you switch on your bed-side light. This is a permanent and lasting awareness. Knowledge is the greatest wealth which never diminishes even if you give it to everyone. You and everyone benefits when you give. When you give of your wisdom and knowledge, both your and your student’s clarity increases.

But then if it is about just the light then an electric light should be be used for doing pujas. Keeping with the times, so as to say! And you will find plastic lamps shaped like the traditional ones with an electric bulb fitted in it. These do bring in light, but they do not have the spiritual connection that a traditional lamp has. In the Deep, we burn either ghee/clarified butter or sesame oil with the help of a cotton wick. This Light brings Life.

Now oil in the lamp represents our karma. (Eg A good remedy to balance out the energies of Saturn is to light a sesame oil lamp on Saturdays with full intention.) If you burn ghee/clarified butter in the lamp, it represents the Vasanas, the desires which make up your mind and which reside in your individual ego. The wick represents the self-ego. When you light the lamp with intention it represents the slow but sure burning of the desires and the karma which were linked to the self-ego. The oil burns and exhausts, finally the self-ego also perishes, ie the wick is also burnt out. All your negative tendencies are burnt in the fire of the Deep. The flame of the light always moves upwards, a subtle reminder that you should always rise upwards, away from the karma, desires and the ego. Kundalini herself is fire, she also has to rise. When your soul is finally illuminated with self knowledge you realise the Parabrahma.

Now the Deepak is also a tool. It reminds you to use your desires and karmic actions to actively burn your self-ego and turn all this into light. Take control of your mind where these desires reside, train your mind to desire self-illumination. Use your self-ego where your personal Will resides and make it work for the Ultimate realization. The desires and karma if harnessed correctly with the self-ego can work wonders. Then the Vasana/desire is converted to the right intention. The self-ego fed by the desire to perform the right action, changes its character. What desires you feed your self-ego with, decides your evolution.

Light a Lamp, use the power of Agni

Now, it is ideal if you can recite a mantra while lighting the Deepak, lamp. Mantra is an intention expressed in Sanskrit (Devbhasha Samskrutam). Every sound of this eternal language is linked to your internal chakras, so it works on the deepest levels on you.

You can recite any of the following mantra,

The Gayatri mantra, Om Bhuh bhuvah swahah, Om tat savitur varenyam, bhargo devasya dhimahi, dhiyo yo nah prachodayat, Om 

  • (detailed post with meaning here)

Om Deepajyoti parabrahma, Deepajyoti janardana, Deepo haratu may papam, Sandhyadeepa namostute Om

  • Om – Ultimate Reality.
  • Deepjyoti – The brightness of the lamp, the eye of illumination, intelligence, lightning seen at the third eye, life, fire, meter of prosody, time, the light which precedes self-realization, etc
  • Parabrahma – the unknowable Reality which cannot be described in the language of the created worlds. The ‘beyond intelligence’.
  • Janardana – the energy which excites, causes movement and changes other energies. ie brings about creation, maintenance and destruction of the created.
  • Haratu – request to take away, remove, carry, wear, destroy
  • May – of me, for me
  • Papam – inauspiciousness. (There is only one form of genuine auspiciousness, ie Self-Realisation. There is only one form of non-auspiciousness, ie Self-Delusion.)
  • Sandhyadeep – the internal illumination that you see at your third eye in deep Dhyan. or alternatively the lamp which is lit at dawn and dusk. Sandhya is the junction where real and unreal meet.

The Agni Gayatri mantra. Om Sapta jivhaya vidmahe, havya bhadraya dhimahi tanno Agnih prachodayat Om

  • Sapta-jivha Vidmahe – First ‘seven tongued’. This refers to the seven chakras from the Muladhar to the Sahasrara, ie their conscious energies. These 7 chakras are the seven tongues of the conscious energy of life. The intelligence of the fire animates these. Then ‘to get, to know, to find, to understand’. You are asking the conscious energies of the fire to bring you the understanding of your internal energies.
  • Havya – means ‘an offering or to call’. Bhadra – ‘excellent, auspicious, great, gold, that portion of the Ganga which resides in the celestial realms,’ ie your Ida nadi. It means the one who carries the offered energies through your Ida nadi and distributes it to the conscious intelligence who creates your body/mind. Dhimahi – धीमहि is a verb in the present imperfect tense. धी/Dhi is Intelligence. This word indicates that Intelligence is never a stagnant closed end, it is in continuous motion even if it is in the present Moment. You are asking the Supreme to grant you that ever-evolving Intelligence of the present Moment. In short you are calling on the energy of the fire to take these energies inside you and build your body/mind.
  • Tanno (tan nah) Agnih prachodayat – Tan तन् means continuing, uninterrupted propagation. Nah नः represents the ultimate creative energy and also the power to accept and receive it. It allows the seeker to focus on the infinite, thus become infinite himself. अग्नि: Agni is the conscious intelligence of fire. The ability to comprehend, to work, to move, animate, knowledge, illumination, the light of the third eye, the Ajnya chakra.
  • Prachodayat means ‘to incite, inspire, urge, demand, excite, summon, proclaim, request, impel’. In short you are asking the conscious intelligence of the fire, ie the intelligence of the Ajnya chakra, by any means of action, to bring this experience to you.

Or finally. Om Shubham karoti kalyanam, arogyam dhana sampada, shatrubuddhi vinashaya Deepajyoti namostute Om

  • Shubham – eternal auspiciousness, Parabrahma
  • karoti – does, is
  • kalyanam – fortune, benevolence, virtue, generosity, beauty, happiness, gold, self-realisation
  • Arogyam – health, freedom from diseases, removal of afflictions. In the spiritual sense there is only one disease/affliction, ie self-delusion
  • Dhana – gift, wealth, valued object. There is only one such, ie self-realisation
  • sampada – to make complete
  • Shatru-buddhi – Shatru is hostile enemy. Buddhi is the tattva in which the desires/vasana reside. These vasana are normally hostile and inimical to self-realization. If you can destroy their hostility, you can get this Buddhi to work with you for self-realization.
  • vinashaya – to destroy to utterly annihilate. The inimical tendency of the Buddhi is annhilated, not Buddhi itself!
  • Deep-jyoti – conscious energy of Agni, Ajnya chakra
  • Namostute (namah astu te) – That infinite. That paradox of illusion and wisdom united together. That depth of stillness and ease of flowing movement together. That eternal unborn one in solitude. May that be!

And finally if it is too difficult to remember these mantras, just recite Om, three times, as you light your lamp.

Light a Lamp, use the power of Agni

When you recite any of the above mantras for Agni you are calling on all these terrible and terrifying forces which exist within your own self. You are giving them a safe and productive channel. This is the infinite power of Agni, it can be used to transform!

The lighting of the Deep, lamp at home is considered highly auspicious, it brings prosperity. And when you are doing this, for the 10 seconds, you are focussing very intensely on the wick, the match-stick and light. In spiritual terms, even one instant of intense focus is enough to bring self-illumination. The part is also the whole. So when you light lamp you are also lighting the lamp of true knowledge in yourself. The Agni/fire is called the Jata-veda, the ‘one who knows everything’. (A tip. If you have one pressing question on your mind. Light one Deep in front of your household deities before you go to bed. Think of your question and request the Agni to answer. You should get your answer in your dreams as you sleep.)

Agni is associated with the Raja gun of the Prakruti. Agni brings changes, it is linked to the potential energy of creation called Bhahmadev and the active principle of creation ie his wife Sarasvati. its conscious energy resides at the third eye, Ajnya chakra. This was the spiritual part of Agni.

When the energy of this Agni is differentiated, it also becomes at part of your internal constitution, ie in the panch-bhoot. It becomes differentiated and its tiny component resides at the Manipur chakra (Oudarya Agni), this takes care of your body’s heat, metabolism etc. Then there is the Aakaraja Agni which is present as the ‘heat’ in metals etc. Then the Divya Agni resides in the heavenly bodies, stars including our sun. And finally the physical Bhauma Agni which we see with your physical eyes as flames.

In Ayurved, Agni is associated with Pitta, it is heat. Its job is the transformation of food you eat and the pran you pull in from the Universe. And it controls all the psychic factors which drive spiritual evolution. If this Agni does not work properly you fall ill physically/mentally.

Now a few technical things. What to burn. It is ghee or sesame oil. For some typical rituals neem oil, mahua oil, castor oil, coconut oil is used. Do not use any ‘refined’ oil, it is a chemical product. The wick is made from white cotton fibres. (For doing some typical Devi pujas this wick is made bit yellowish by touching a bit of turmeric to it). You should make 2 wicks then make them one by twisting them. Never use a single wick. The lit wick of the Lamp should always be towards the east direction. Keep the lamp (should not be of steel/ iron) on a copper metal plate (don’t use a steel/ iron plate), keep a few grains of uncooked rice below the plate. 

Hinduism is not a religion, it is Sanatan Dharm, the ‘Eternal way of Life’. You follow your own conscience and know that the law of Karma prevails. (There is no superstition here. And one cannot explain a Ph.D level topic to a pre-school child. The child has to go to school first and study till he reaches that level. If someone wants to criticise this Sanatan Dharm, it is the same, do study first. ie Do your Dhyan regularly for 6 months, see what you experience, then if your conscience says it is ok, go ahead and criticise.)

So if you feel like it, do light a Deep, a lamp in your house. This will not just light up your house but also your life and your energy on all levels. Experience your energy for yourself.

Light a Lamp, use the power of Agni

 

Kundalini piercing the 3 knots and the 6 chakra

The entire Shri Vidya is based on the geometry of the chakras and the movement of the Kundalini in your body. The Shri-chakra geometry is your energy geometry in perfect equilibrium. If you place all your chakras one above the other you get this Shri geometry. It is worshipped in 2D and in 3D in several ways to increase the personal energy. This diagram is the basis of the entire Tantra and all spiritual practice. Your Kundalini starts at the very bottom Muladhar chakra, and after curving through this complicated geometry it reaches the top central dot, Bindu. Only in deep Dhyan and by the pull of your internal Guru does the Kundalini move from its resting place. Else it will not stir and it is for your own protection. Only when you are mentally ready to accept, experience and transcend duality and illusion does it move. Kundalini is not some mystic power nor is it some prize.When it moves and ultimately reaches its destination you leave this Universe/Creation forever. As you realise your real self, you realise that the universes are all unreal. You realise Moksh.

This post is just to pique your interest. To actually experience anything of this sort you will need to practice Dhyan.

Tripur, Tripurari, Tripursundari

The Shri-chakra geometry is basically in two parts.

The topmost bindu, the central dot is the avyakta para form. The tiny dot within the central equilateral triangle. This is the unmanifested Beyond form or the Ultimate Intelligence. The Para, your real nature, the ultimate you. If your Kundalini arrives here you experience your own reality. This is your target.

The equilateral triangle around the central dot and everything around this triangle is the vyakta or aparaa form. This is the manifested creation or the unintelligent limited energy. Your body, mind, your universe etc is created outwards from this triangle (this post on the 24 tattva-s). This lower part is further sub-divided into 3 sections.

Vahni वह्नि mandal

The lowermost 2 chakras, Muladhar and Swadhisthan are the Vahni वह्नि mandal. The circle of Fire. To cross this mandal, you are required to transcend the Muladhar and Anahata chakras and then undo the Brahma Granthi/knot. Here ‘you’ means the energy of self-identification called the Kundalini. With every movement of the Kundalini your concept of Self is expanding yet becoming subtler.

The Vahni mandal is deeply linked to Raja gun. (You are composed of the three Gun.) Raja gun is the energy which creates illusions. It creates ‘Maya’. Fire is perhaps the greatest illusion, it is not technically matter nor is it completely energy. It exists, but shifts continually, you cannot pin-point the flames to a definite location. You cannot describe its color or shape, it is every changing. It transmutes, it consumes, it releases. Very fascinating. Brahmdev is the name of the conscious intelligence of the Raja-gun, represented by the Fire, Vahni. Here the Real and illusion, the material and the spiritual mix, you cannot tell them apart. This knot opens only when attachment to the illusion, the gross world is abandoned. The gross body is called the sthool-sharir which is composed of the anna-mai-kosh, the body which is linked to the material. (Your body is composed of 5 sheaths.) The reality or rather the unreality of this sheath is first experienced and then transcended here. Once the kundalini crosses this Vahni mandal, your consciousness can intentionally separate from the physical shell, eg you can consciously leave the gross body and travel using your subtle body.

Crossing this Fire-circle is very difficult as here you have to stop creating. If you look at your behaviour you are always creating, thoughts, ideas, emotions, tendencies, physical stuff, reading, writing, working, you create. And you are attached to these creation of yours. Stopping this creation and attachment to creation is extremely difficult. Not impossible but very difficult.

My Guru would say that Dhyan is necessary and ideally to be performed 3 times a day, ie in the morning, evening and once in the night sometime between 10pm-2am. When you begin your practice, you finish off one session in 30 mins, you get utterly bored, sitting, breathing and staring into the darkness between your eyebrows, mind wanders, the body aches etc. Later, maybe after 6months of this, you find that your mind is less diverted, your body is more supportive, your breathing is slower and you go on to about 45mins-1hr per session. The process gets enjoyable. Then after 1yr, you might see each Dhyan session going to upto 1.30hrs. There is deep internal intoxication (no other word). Later maybe after 2-3yrs of regular practice, it can stretch for hours, you will sit continue from 9pm – 5am, and your requirement for deep sleep and dream state will reduce and go to zero. All this varies from person to person, but the common theme is that you have to practice regularly.

You need to give time to yourself. In your life-time till now you have lived for thousands of hours, but have you given time to yourself? Time is the most precious thing you have and you have frittered it away on others. Try giving yourself these 1.30 hrs initially per day. It may not be possible for everyone because of genuine constraints but at least 30mins per day, one session daily?

You have to do Dhyan for some 500hrs to begin with at least, otherwise you will not see anything to do with pran or kundalini.

Who is a Guru?

Saura सौर  mandal

Back to our geometry, and the next 2 chakras. The Manipur and Anahata chakra-s make up the Saura सौर  mandal, the circle of the Sun. To cross this mandal you need to cross these two chakras and also undo the Vishnu-granthi or the knot of Vishnu. The concept of jivatma/individual soul as compared to your limitless Reality is the syllabus here. You are made aware of the unreality of the sookshma sharir or your subtle body. (The subtle body is composed of the Pran-mai-kosh, Mano-mai-kosh and Vidnyan-mai-kosh sheaths.)

The Sun represents the individual ego/ jivatma. Unless you give up the sense of narrow personal self, the experience of the greater Self is not possible. Here in the Saura mandal, the sense of attachment to the fruits of actions done by you is linked to your soul. Creation of new karma is possible only till the kundalini crosses this mandal. The new karma you create in your current life is called Agami karma which gets added to your stored karma. You can reduce the stored- Sanchit, karma by your spiritual practice.

The Vishnu Granthi, the knot of Vishnu opens only when attachment to the sookshma sharir or subtle body is abandoned. Vishnu is the intelligent energy of Satva-gun, this maintains the Maya – created illusion. Here you are taught the deepest wisdom linked to the Satva-gun. Not just taught, but also tested rigorously.

When you crossed the Vahni mandal, you understood, experienced and transcended your attachment to the process of creation and the attachment to the stuff you are creating. You transcended the illusion of ‘act of creation’. Now you do not desire new creations. But you are ‘someone’, you are Priya, Amit, a mother, a teacher, a son, you are scared of the dark, you like sweets, you are an Indian etc. You have all these impressions stored in your subtle-body accumulated from your past several lives. You are maintaining these impressions. When you attempt to cross the Vishnu-granthi you are shown these impressions to be the illusions that they are. All your notions about your limited sense of self are shown to you as being nothing, insubstantial.

To overcome some thing, you need to understand every aspect of that thing, experience it and transcend it. This journey of the Kundalini is just this process. The process can perhaps be painful or pleasurable. But both these mindsets cannot sustain in the understanding of the self. You are the Para, the beyond, you are complete in yourself, you don’t need the concept of happiness or any other feeling to describe your completeness. You are All there is. You are your own definition. It is rather a subtle understanding here.

In some cultures, the children believe that there is a magical person who comes once a year and gives them toys. The parents do not tell the child the truth unless he grows older and toys become irrelevant to him. Just like that, you are not shown the illusory nature of your material life unless you are capable of absorbing the intelligence in the way it should be.

Kundalini is an intelligent force, it will not move or do anything unless you are ready. There are some exercises on the internet which claim to move the kundalini, they are all fake. If by ill-luck you manage to ‘move’ the kundalini by force you are in for a very bad time, your body’s vital energy network will be short-circuited, the movement of pran will be affected, there will be physical illness and mental insanity.

So just do your Dhyan, your internal Guru will do the rest. Your job is very simple, just sit, breathe, focus and mantra every day, (either once/twice/thrice). When you attain the critical potential, things happen spontaneously. Your Dhyan is the process of cleaning up the road using the movement of pran/vital energy. When the road opens the kundalini will move on its own.

chakra-chart-min

Chandra चंद्र  mandal

Back to the geometry, the top one-third. This is the Chandra चंद्र  mandal, the circle of the Moon, composed of the Vishuddhi and the Ajnya chakras. To move onwards from here these two chakras and the Rudra Granthi is required be be navigated successfully. The energy body associated here is the Karan sharir or the causal body. Here you understand why you separated from the Greater Self in the first place. Why you have karma bound to your soul? This karan-sharir is the tightest sheath around the soul called the Anand-mai-kosh. The meaning of this sheath is rather typical, it means ‘the happiness you feel when you know that the game is near its end’, ie the eternal happiness of Singularity. As you cross the Vishuddhi and Ajnya chakras you finally transcend dualities and come within reach the Singular sense of self. Here you destroy the seeds of karma itself, you destroy the concept of ‘creation of creation’. You destroy the concept of ‘maintenance of creation’. Finally you destroy the concept of ‘destruction of creation’. The entire creation vanishes as if it never existed in the first place. The presiding energy here is the Shiv, the intelligence of Vishuddha tama-gun. The extra special pure energy of Tama-gun.

The Kundalini has to cross all these three mandal, in which it pierces the 6 lower chakras and these 3 Granthi. ‘Piercing’ is perhaps a wrong word to use, but Sanskrit words cannot be translated only experienced. All this happens within the Sushumna nadi, the thinnest energy channel of the body. Within this channel there are progressively thinner naadi-s, Chitrini and Vajrini. Nadi within Nadi layout. This thinnest nadi within a nadi is also called the Brahmanadi. This Brahmanadi is through, from the lowest Muladhar to the topmost Sahasrar+Bindu complex terminating at the Brahma-randhra at the top of your head. At every chakra and granthi this Brahmanaadi is twisted around itself in a very specific way. This forms the lotus/yantra of that specific chakra. Piercing the chakra means the energy moves smoothly through these thin complicated loops without damaging anything.

Till now the kundalini was in the region called Dharmakshetra-Kurukshetra in the Bhagwat Gita. To navigate this part you have to strive and focus, take efforts.

Bindu बिन्दु  mandal

Now after the Kundalini crosses the Ajnya chakra it reaches the last section where the Para pervades. You have destroyed your sense of your individual self. Now onwards the progress is more under the control of the internal Guru and your greater self. This region is called the Dash-angul-sthan, the space between the forehead’s Ajnya-chakra and the top of the head, the Brahmarandhra at the center of the Sahasrara chakra. This space is also called the Bindu mandal. It is also called the Dharmakshetra. The other remaining chakras of the head exist in this region.

This Brahmarandhra is the seat of true light of the self also called the Jyotir-lok, Satya-lok or Parabrahm.

In Shri-Vidya, the Mahakameshwar, ‘the great one who controls all desire’ resides here merged together with his ‘wife’ Mahakameshwari or Lalita Tripursundari, ie the Kundalini. Here Kundalini reaches her ‘husband’ Mahakameshwar, merges with him and thus attains Singularity. This means that in the Bindu mandal, the desire to create has not been expressed yet, both energies are one, they are not differentiated. The merged form is the Reality. There is no duality. When the Singular here differentiates into duality, she starts creating the world while he observes. Thus these two energies are known as the parents of the universe.

If you refer to the Bhagwat Gita, this Brahmarandhra is the abode of the subtlest yet tremendous aspect of Krishna. If you practice using the Vidnyan Bhairav Tantra as your reference book this is the abode of Bhairav. The non-dual, the Advaita. The same concept is discussed in Bhagwat Gita and the same is in Devi Mahatmya, and in both the backdrop is a War of terrific proportions. War and spirituality are an odd combination perhaps, but it is War, you fight your mind. In fact every story-allegory in Sanatan Dharm aka Hinduism describes this same thing in different words. The world and everything around you is a mixture of the real and the unreal mixed together. ‘Maya’ means ‘not-that’. Maya cannot be proved to be definitively proved to be real or illusion. Understanding then experiencing and transcending this is real Knowledge of the Self. This is Sadyo-mukti.

 

The Gayatri mantra

This post is partly in response to this comment I received in the Contact form,  (I read an article which mentioned about our age and chakras. Are chakras related to our chronology like one chakra is dominant or something? Also what is meant by opening chakras?)

It is a rather technical post so do read the hyperlinked posts, linked to the words in pink.

I have written about the ‘age and chakra’ part in my earlier post here.

Development of a child’s Chakra energy

We evolve always. From the moment of birth to the moment of death, then till we are reborn again we evolve. Our energies increase, refine and again. Our energy structure changes with time and our experiences. A new baby born is at very basic levels of consciousness, he goes through several sequential changes till his 7th birthday. At the 7th birthday he is considered to have half way entered society. This post is from the reference books and also my experience in observing my own son, my nephews/nieces and random babies. So a quick post on how a baby evolves in the first 7yrs of his life.

When a baby is born, till his 1st birthday the idea is survival. The Muladhar chakra is most active. The baby learns the essential things related to personal survival. He wants, he grabs stuff. He is like an animal in this sense, he breathes, eats and wanders about aimlessly, nothing much more than that. His parents teach him simple things which he learns with much effort. He is in fact more a pet than a full-fledged human being. 

Then in the one year till the 2nd birthday the Swadhisthan chakra things are brought into expression, baby now has the glimmerings of understanding. He has come up from his basic animal stage and now he understands emotions. If you scold him he knows why and if you praise him he knows why too. The seeds of the Swadhisthan chakra show their first basic expression. He wants to be cuddled and if you ask him for a kiss he responds with pleasure. These are very subtle observations but if you pay attention you can easily see.

In the 3rd year of life the child expresses his ideas. You sense that your son has a sense of self, there is fire within. You might see his first temper tantrum in this age. Not the regular crying, that starts from day one! But the sense of ego, an understanding of insult. He wants a toy, you refuse to get it. Now his sense of self is offended and he expresses it! The Manipur chakra has come to play.

The 4th birthday sees an increase in understanding, sharing and community concepts are put in as the Anahata chakra is powered on. eg If you ask him to share he will share with you out of an understanding. There is expansion. The expression of the chakra is still in its basic state but it has started. Try asking your 2month old baby to share, he won’t understand anything. But a child at 3-4yrs of age will share or not but based on a understanding on what ‘sharing’ means. Now he recognises that something called community exists.

The 5th year of life and the Vishuddhi chakra has developed. In this period of 4-5yrs the child matures in an indefinable way. He knows that in life things can come and also go. Now he wont cry so much if his favourite toy breaks. He us less possessive. He has realised that things can end. Some things are good/not-good. You can see the glimmerings of the adult that he is going to be. This has happened gradually but definitely over one year.

By the 6th birthday, the child has a sense of purpose, it is quite dim but it is there. He can develop his own priorities. If he demands something it is not from ego alone, he feels that thing to be important to him in some way. You can ask him to plan things and he will be able to. The Ajnya chakra has developed its basic function and is expressing itself. Allocation, how much do I have and how do I use it best. The child is evolving.

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Then comes the most important year of his life, the period from the 6th to the 7th birthday when the Sahasrara chakra gets its finishing touch. The highest divinity expresses itself in the chakra system. This year is extremely important. In this year the boys are taught the Gayatri mantra and wear the Brahma-sutra. The girls are taught the Gayatri mantra but they don’t need to wear the Brahma-sutra. The children start Gayatri puja and now onwards are a part of society albeit in a small way. Now his own karma start affecting him. Till the 6th birthday the child is on the boundary of the past life and the current life. If he suffers some illness or dies it is not because of his karma but a reflection of the parent’s karma. As the child starts his/her Gayatri puja he/she stops being dependant on the parents for energy.

A child needs to be carefully and intelligently nurtured for the first 7yrs of his life. Whatever experiences he goes through in these 7years leaves a very deep imprint on his energy structure. This is the first foundation cycle of the chakra development.

In ancient times, the child would be sent to the Gurukul, the school-house of the Guru, at the 7th birthday. The child is now receptive to learning. His chakra system is now fully active and he can now take in external teachings and experiences more effectively. This child would be in Guru-kul for the next 7yrs. This next cycle of 7yrs sees the chakras taking in influences very readily. Not so easily as the first cycle of 7yrs, but the child is still malleable and the Guru molds his mind and intellect very carefully. The formative concepts of spirituality, conduct, Dharma would also be instilled here.

The child would return to the parent’s house at the age of 14yrs. Now the third cycle of the chakra evolution begins as the child is taught a profession. In the ancient times, the child followed the parent’s profession, so the boy-teenager would be an apprentice learning from his parents/ peers/ elders. The girl-teenager would be taught how to run a house-hold. Contrary to what some people think, managing a house-hold is a full-time job in itself, even now. Here too he/she receive an education but it is a functional education. Generally at the end of this period he/she is married off. Marriage is considered to be the Sanskar (a correct action) where a person formally and completely enters the society.

(There is one option here, if the person wants to take on a spiritual route and become a Sanyasi in the full-time pursuit of the Ultimate, he/she renounces the society towards the end of the third 7-yr cycle. Taking up Sanyas before this age was not considered.)

This 7year cycle is very deeply ingrained into the energy body as well as the physical body. Every year of your life, one chakra is in special focus. You might not be so aware of this at your current age, but it is obvious in the first, second and third cycles till the age of 21yrs. One thing you can observe if you have a small baby. Whatever experiences he has had in the first 7yrs of life will subtly repeat in every 7yr cycle. Eg if in the 1st yr of life he had some severe health problem, you will see its subtle repetition every 7th year after that, eg in the 8th yr you might see that his health is genuinely not well. In the 15th yr he might be slightly physically ill but more mentally upset. The intensity of the echo will diminish with every 7yr cycle.

Modern biology also says that every 7years our every body cell is replaced/renewed. They are actually measuring the 7yr cycle of the Muladhar chakra related to the physical body. If they could but see the energy, they could also notice the cycles of the 7 chakras, but then if they start seeing energy, they would stop being scientists and become seers/Rishi-s!

 

Men are men and women are women

This post is in part response to this comment I received in the Contact form,

(I read an article which mentioned about our age and chakras. Are chakras related to our chronology like one chakra is dominant or something? Also what is meant by opening chakras?)

Will write about the ‘opening chakras’ part in my next post.

Bhagwat Gita as Yog-shastra

Yog means union and shastra means a manual, rules, a step-by-step direction. Union of what? Of the body with the soul, of the soul with the Eternal, of karma with the soul, ‘union’ can be quite a wide topic. From the Sadhak’s point of view union means self realisation this is achieved after the union of the Kundalini with the Para-‘unknowable beyond’ Moksh.

There are several Gita-s. The Bhagwat Gita is recited by Krishna in the Mahabharat, it is in Sanskrit – Devbhasha Samskrutam. It is fundamentally an Advaita experience. The first commentary i.e. Bhashya on the Bhagwat Gita is written by Adi Shankaracharya. In fact before he wrote his Bhashya, the Bhagwat Gita was not very popular, as its real nature is extremely esoteric. This Bhashya clearly establishes the Gita to be a manual for attaining Sadyo-mukti i.e. experience Advaita/ Non-duality. This Bhashya is obviously written in Sanskrit. Most of us have lost touch with our real mother-tongue Sanskrit. Then the more recent commentary ‘Pranab-Gita’ originally in Bengali and available in Hindi was written some 150 yrs ago. Some of us can read these languages so this is very valuable. It also about Advaita. Read these commentaries if you want to understand what the Gita really means. Else read the actual Gita in Sanskrit. Even now in traditional Indian schools, the children are required to learn by heart the actual Gita shlok/verses. Even if you do not understand it, the original Sanskrit will go deep within and trigger changes.

Dhrutarashtra Uvacha, ‘Dharamkshetre Kurukshetre Samaveta Yuyutsavah, Mamakah Pandavashchaiva Kimakurvata Sanjay’.

The first verse of the Bhagwat Gita starts with ‘Dharma-kshetrae Kuru-kshetrae’. Now what is this really, the physical battle-ground? Perhaps yes, when you were a child and your Grandmom told you stories from the Mahabharat. But not anymore. You are a sadhak now, the meaning is different for you.

A quick re-cap. You are familiar with the energy structure of your body. There are 6 chakra, linked to your back, from the base of the spine to the center of the eyebrows, Muladhar, Swadhisthan, Manipur, Anahat, Vishuddhi, Ajnya. Then there are the six chakras in the head, Mula, Vama, Jeyshtha, Raudri, Sahasrara and the Bindu. The Kundalini is the energy of self-identification locked at the Muladhar chakra and it is supposed to reach the top-most chakra complex of Sahasrara+Bindu. Thus you achieve self-realisation or Moksh.

You also know about the 24 Tattva-s of creation. These are Prakruti, Mahat-buddhi, Ahamkar, Manas, the 5 sense organs, the 5 organs of action, the 5 panch-bhoot/ elements and the 5 tan-matra/ perceptions. I have written about these in my earlier posts. This is how your individual soul is created and the differentiated from other souls.

All this energy now forms your energy body and this is the Kshetra.

You know that there are the three Gun, Sattva, Raja and Tama. You, your body and mind are animated by the movements of these Gun. These three Gun are represented by the top-most triangle of the Shri-yantra. Now these three pervade throughout the energy body animating it. Their action divides the Kshetra into 3 parts.

The first part is the Karma-kshetra or simply Kuru-kshetra. ‘Kuru’ in Sanskrit means to act eg ‘kim kuru?’, means ‘what to do?’. So Kuru-kshetra means the ‘field of action’. This is composed of the 11 tattvas ie the 5 sense organs, the 5 organs of action and the Manas. This area is dominated by the Raja and Tama Gun. This part is connected to the actions related to the external world. You sense things, you see, smell, taste, etc. You also move things with your hands, legs and reproduce, create children etc. All this stuff is connected with the external world. These are infinite actions created by infinite permutations and combinations of these tattvas and animated by the Raja-Tama Gun-s in combination. The mind/ Manas is more dominant in this region and it decides what actions are to be taken.

Kundalini and the Shatchakra

Then next part of the energy body is the Dharmakshetra-Kurukshetra. This is composed of the Sushumna which extends from the Muladhar chakra to the Ajnya chakra and includes the 6 lower chakras. This part of the energy body is controlled by the Ajnya chakra. Your individual soul resides in the Ajnya chakra. The Bhagwat Gita starts with this word and the first verse/shlok describes this region. This is the real battle-ground of the spiritual aspirant.

This region is dominated by Satva-Raja Gun-s. The lowermost area near the Muladhar chakra is pervaded more by the Raja-gun and the upper areas near the Ajnya chakra is more Satvik. This is the reason why starting spiritual practice is so difficult. The Raja dominated lower chakras, i.e. Muladhar and Swadhisthan, do not allow the mind to focus, there is always movement. These lower chakras are linked more to the field of action ie the Kurukshetra, so are susceptible to greater interference from the tattvas. The gross body moves, the pran moves and the mind also moves under the influence of external forces and it takes significant mental force to still them. Raja means movement. But if you persevere and battle it out here, your body and mind both start getting still and more sookshma/ subtle or fine. Later, things ease out as you approach the Satva dominated upper regions.

The Satva and Raja are in equilibrium at the Manipur chakra. This chakra is the location of the samaan vayu. It is when you reach this chakra that the Kundalini actually starts getting aware. Reaching the 10 petalled lotus of the Manipur is the crucial point in your sadhana. In the Gita this stage is described as the fall of Bhishma, which takes place on the 10th day of the war.

In this Dharmakshetra-Kurukshetra region the mind/ Manas and the individual soul/ Jivatma both operate. Your individual soul along with the mind together have control over the actions of this region. Here the 5 subtle perceptions, tanmatra reside. Also the 5 -bhoot, the conscious parts of the earth, water, fire, air and ether. These are the subtle tattva-s. These move outwards and power the sense organs and the organs of action. But when these subtle tattva-s turn inwards they illuminate the real self. If you consciously act here you can influence your mind as well as soul. This happens when you do your Dhyan with pure Om or either of the ajapa mantra-s Soham or Hamsa. Thus is the paramount importance of this Dharmakshetra-Kurukshetra region.

If the aspirant wishes to realise himself, he has to fight the battle here in Dharmakshetra-Kurukshetra. The tendencies of the Mind fight the tendencies of the Intelligence. The mind and the creations of the mind attack, there is no other word, they really attack, these are the armies of the Kuru.

The aspirant stills the flow of breath by pranayam, thus the flow of pran also starts getting regulated. Then pran is made even finer, ie extreme control over the movement of the pran is achieved. Thus you make this thinnest pran move in a controlled way into the Sushumna. While you are doing this the mind located in the Ajnya chakra also is required to be made still. These things happen simultaneously and spontaneously.

How do you thread a needle? It is the same concept, but here the thread/pran is a million times thinner. You cannot see it with your physical eyes. The eye of the needle is in fact a super-thin tube twisted and re-twisted in complicated knots. You are required to push your pran-thread through all these twists. It requires super-intense focus. Another problem is that you really don’t have the thread-pran available. Pran is being distributed by the Ajnya chakra to the entire body! Your thread is frayed! So first you have to collect the pran at one point. All this happens gradually as you do regular Dhyan. (My Guru, his Guru, his Guru-brothers all are very clear on this, if you do your Dhyan regularly as it should be done, you will achieve your goal within 2 yrs.)

And, the last part of your energy body is the Dharma-kshetra. This extends from above the Ajnya chakra and includes the 6 chakras of the head. This is the region of the Para. This is also called the Bindu Mandala of Shri-Vidya. Here the Satva-Tama Gun dominate. There Raja-Gun does not push things out of equilibrium. Here things are still, stable. The topmost Bindu is the abode of the Para in your own body. The residence of the Bhairav of Vidnyan Bhairav Tantra. Dharma also means the right foundation. This region is neutral in nature. If you reach this level in your Sadhana you move onwards by the inexorable pull of your own Self. Things don’t get easier but the pull is stronger. It is Sahaj/ spontaneous.

The Gita is highly esoteric. It took an entire post to write about just ‘Dharmakshetra-Kurukshetra’ and I haven’t even touched 5% of its reality. So read the original Sanskrit Gita, or the Bhashya by Adi Shankaracharya or the Pranab-Gita. For the real Sadhak there is no other option. Any other ‘translations’ of the Gita are ok for the beginner levels but are extremely misleading for the real aspirant. A commentary is only as good as the person who wrote it. A person who has actually practiced and experienced the Gita a Yog-shastra, is an authority, none other.

Every story in Sanatan Dharm aka Hinduism is about the Kundalini its movement and your eventual Moksh. Every single story. There are 3 very valuable books which detail the step by step process on Dhyan and spiritual progress. I keep these with me always for reference because these also describe what happens when you do practice.

  1. Vidnyan Bhairav Tantra
  2. Bhagwat Gita
  3. Devi Mahatmya or Durga Saptashati

The first is a clear precise manual. The other two are written as allegory-stories, but are quite understandable if you know Sanskrit. And they all describe the same thing. The words may be different but they ultimately mean the same.

Vishvam-aatma vinirgatam’. Creation has emerged out from the Singular Atma. A real sadhak does not worship a specific ‘deity’. Hinduism has several gods, goddesses, deities and energies which are worshipped. This is necessary for the initial steps into Sadhana. But a genuine aspirant does not worship a ‘form’, he is an Atma-sadhak, an aspirant of the Self. His goal is Sadyo-mukti. He desires to know himself completely, aatma-pratishtha, and is determined to attain Brahma-sthiti the stability of the Self.

 

Kundalini and the Shatchakra

 

Hindus worship Intelligent Consciousness

There is quite some confusion about what ‘God’, if any, is worshipped by followers of Sanatan Dharma, aka Hindus. We Hindus pray with equal intensity inside temples dedicated to various ‘Gods’, to trees, to coconuts/ areca-nuts, the earth, at the sea-shore or to a mountain, a stone, or a river. We revere animals, especially desi humped-cows and elephants with the same intense faith. Ravens are given their due importance. If we have a living Guru we will do his puja. We touch the feet of our elders with respect. We recognise the divine energy in everyone, we welcome strangers with a ‘Namaste’, which means we recognise the ‘Ultimate power who is focussed infinity’ in them. (Namaste is a Sanskrit word which means, the paradox of the Para. Union of illusion and wisdom together. Depth of stillness and flowing movement together. The eternal unborn one in solitude.)

Hindus worship Intelligent Consciousness

There is quite some confusion about what ‘God’, if any, is worshipped by followers of Sanatan Dharma, aka Hindus. We Hindus pray with equal intensity inside temples dedicated to various ‘Gods’, to trees, to coconuts/ areca-nuts, the earth, at the sea-shore or to a mountain, a stone, or a river. We revere animals, especially desi humped-cows and elephants with the same intense faith. Ravens are given their due importance. If we have a living Guru we will do his puja. We touch the feet of our elders with respect. We recognise the divine energy in everyone, we welcome strangers with a ‘Namaste’, which means we recognise the ‘Ultimate power who is focussed infinity’ in them. (Namaste is a Sanskrit word which means, the paradox of the Para. Union of illusion and wisdom together. Depth of stillness and flowing movement together. The eternal unborn one in solitude.)

However different the external forms of the object of worship may be, the common theme is that we adore the ‘Parabrahma’. One might say he worships Vishnu, Brahmadev or Shiv but he will agree that he really worships the ‘Para’. The Para-brahma is the one beyond-para, the intelligence-brahma, who cannot be described in the limited language of this manifested world, the source of us all. For every Hindu the goal of life is to attain Moksh, ie to experience his own true nature. The individual soul/Jivatma takes several lives, creates and works out his karma. The law of karma is executed by the personal conscience-Antaratma. Whatever you act, think feel etc, this is evaluated by your own personal conscience.  You are your own judge of your act, you pass judgement also allot and demerit/ merit.

So the ‘god’ of Hinduism is the beyond, Para. And everyone of us is that same Para. Just we have forgotten our reality. Everything you see, feel, do etc is the Para which has taken on different forms. Follow whatever you choose. All paths lead to the same destination, enlightenment Moksh. The only difference between your own soul and the Universal Soul-Paramatma is the binding of karma.

Then the question is, if we worship one Singular Para, why this multiplicity of ‘gods’? Shiv, Vishnu, Brahmadev, Indra, Varun, Agni, Savitr, Prajapati, Shakti, Laxmi, Ganapati, Skanda, local gods, family gods, village gods, tree gods, mountain gods, the list is endless. The reason is that there is a multiplicity of human nature, each one is different. Some prefer worshipping a female-Devi deity, some prefer a child-bala form, a terrible-ugra form, a peaceful-saumya form, or the elements rivers- Aap, fire- Agni, etc. There is essential freedom in Hinduism, you can worship any form you choose. There is no compulsion to follow a rule-book. In fact there is no rule-book! You should choose the route which stills your mind’s chattering ’spiritual practice’ should be as per your inclination. And every route you choose will take you to the Source, because everything, including you, is a Ray from that same Source.

Our bodies, are composed of these different energies, the 33 classes of deities, the 5 elements Pancha-bhoot,  the 7 types of essences sapta-dhatu, the 5 sheaths kosh, the different types of vital energies/pran, etc.

Our soul, now that is different, it is Para.

Hindus worship Intelligent Consciousness

The Shri-chakra is my favourite yantra. It is easy to explain too because it is visual. You always focus on the central Bindu. This increases the intelligence levels which is an asset in material life. And acts as a guide map for the internal geometry to copy and set itself correctly. Each point and each line of the yantra is defined as a deity, ie an intelligent consciousness. When you stare at the yantra so many types of tremendous energies look back at you with intent attention. Each of these has a name (listed out in the Khadgamala at 2.41 seconds to 7.50 seconds is the main stotra). All of these points and lines are conscious intelligence increasing in energy intensity. Eg the outermost deities will grant you Siddhi-abilities to manipulate time/space/energy, anima, garima, ishitva, vashitva etc. Siddhi are looked down upon by the really serious practitioners. (Eg my cousin 2000km away was in shock, it took 2 seconds of focus to set his energy and physical body right. But if I feed my ego with this, it will create problems in my practice, my focus will waver.) They all pull you towards themselves. But you should understand that that if you gain the whole, these parts will be yours by default. Gain the Bindu and everything below it is automatically yours. You should focus on the central dot always.

This Shriyantra is You! Your energy diagram, you are focussing worshipping adoring your own Entire Self. Liberation is not going to come from outside, it is within you.

Then as you intensely focus your mind, the deities/ conscious energies of the inner circles also offer you abilities. The concentration of your mind is tested to the extreme at every step. You refuse to get caught in their gifts and focus even more intently till you see just the center-most equilateral triangle and the central Bindu. (You will actually see it in your Dhyan, a downward pointing triangle, the brahmanadi within the Sushumna). This means you have reached the Satva-Raja-Tama gun.

Now the test of focus becomes very subtle, the triangle has to be perfectly balanced for you to enter the inner most Bindu mandala, the region of the central Bindu. The three Gun are the essential substance of manifestation. All three are equal in power and importance. All three Gun are equal and they sort of merge form and reform in random continuous motion. This motion is the cause of manifestation. You need all three in perfect balance.

Without Raja-gun you will have no movement. To set the unbalanced Gun back in balance you will need to use the power of movement with intention. This means you will have to understand Raja-gun in its deepest sense. So the defining mantra of Sanatan Dharm is the Gayatri mantra linked to the active principle of Raja-gun, Sarasvati. Every Hindu is required to recite the Gayatri mantra every day! Raja-gun acts on Satva and Tama and puts them out of balance initially. So Raja-gun will be used intentionally by you to bring it all back into balance again.

You will face these three as your kundalini enters the vama, jeyshtha and raudri chakras. (It is long route but because someone asked I am writing this.) If you practice regularly you experience this in a few years. The 3 Gun are represented by conscious energies called Vishnu-satvik, Brahma-rajasik and Shiv-tamasik. Each one of these are equal to the other, no one is bigger or smaller. All three gun are to be ‘defeated’ as they are a part of the manifested, your kundalini will move beyond them. They are not your focus point, just like the Siddhi-s you gain. You are not Vishnu, Shiv or Brahmadev. You reality is even more deeper than these. But they are important in practice. You need help, support, a crutch, these are the crutches. Your source of faith, your ishta-dev, your family gods, etc are very important as they are the support in your initial practice. As your practice deepens you will gradually link with the central Bindu directly. You leave behind the crutches as you learn to walk on your own.

Hindus worship Intelligent Consciousness

You become what you adore. You practice Dhanur-vidya, science of making war, stilling your mind, with single pointed focus, you will become a warrior. You practice tantra, you will become adept at it. You follow a criminal, you will become a criminal. You do mantra-jaap of Gayatri mantra you will find your internal Light. You follow a Guru you will gain Moksh. What you choose to follow is as per your conscience. Choose a route which appeals to you. But remember the law of karma operates so choose wisely.

The Vishnu Sahastranama is a stotra-mantra where 1000+8 names of Vishnu are given. It is from the Mahabharat. Bhishma recites it and tells Yudhishthir that it is the sure-shot route for Moksh. Each one of these names starting from Vishwam to Sarvapraharnayudha are tremendous. Vishwam means ‘everything’ also ‘individual’ and Sarvapraharnayudha means ‘the one who is ready at all times in all ways to fight’ (but fight what? The vagaries of the mind!). Understanding and experiencing one out of the 1000 words may take a life time as they are all paradoxes. I have recited it innumerable times (takes 30 mins) and done its Homa (takes 1hr). The burst of energy from this practice is infinite. Its energies are healing, even if you cannot recite, listening to it (I like this recital by Uma Mohan) also benefits.

Its phala-shruti which is read last is narrated as a conversation. Here Parvati asks her husband Shiv to reduce the power of this 1000+8 names into one word. Shiv gives this word as ‘Rama’ as being equal to the 1000 names. Then Krishna tells Arjun, ‘the real power of my 1000 names is achievable by the recitation of a single shlok ‘Soham’. So now can you imagine the power Soham has? To understand Soham you have to understand these 1000 Sanskrit words first, each is a mantra in itself. And conversely if you understand Soham you automatically understand the 1000 names! Either way you look at it both outcomes are same. You choose which path you prefer, destination is same. The last shlok said by Brahma is exceptionally awesome, “Namo astu anantaya sahastra murtaye sahasra pada akshi shirh uru bahave sahastra namne purushaya shashvate Sahastra koti yugadhaarine namah”, the energy of this one line!

What is ‘Krishna’? Bhagwat Gita is a Yog-shastra by Yogeshwar Krishna, it has to be practiced in Dhyan. To someone who does Dhyan, Krishna is the undefinable energy seen at the Ajnya chakra. This energy is the Guru/force which pulls the kundalini up to unite with the Kutastha purush. This energy connects you to Reality.

Read the Vignyan Bhairav tantra. Here Shiv/Bhairav, describes the practice which helps attain the state of Para. Every book on tantra is described by Shiv to Parvati. Even Jyotish is described by Shiv to Parvati. Recently am reading a Sanskrit book on Ramal-jyotish ‘Ramal rahasya’, it starts with this, Shiv telling Parvati to teach this only to deserving students! No one book/practice is greater than the other. If you can become a real Jyotishi you can attain Moksh via this route too. Every Vidya, every Shastra every Tantra and each type of Yog will lead you to yourself. There is nowhere else to go! But whatever you choose to follow, you have to practice regularly.

If you are inspired by Vishnu Sahastranam, the last name is Sarvapraharnayudha सर्वप्रहरणायुध​. Be prepared to fight, in every way, at every time, with all possible weapons, against all possible enemies. And there are several. If you are following the Bhagwat Gita route, you will meet the energies of the entire Kaurav army and Kuru warriors on the Kurukshetra of your Asan. Your final enemy will be your ego as Duryodhan. These stories Mahabharat or Ramayan or Devi Mahatmya actually happen in energy terms as you do your Dhyan.

In this life I have done pujas using Mahamryutunjai mantra, Gayatri mantra, Navavarna mantra, Shri-sukta, mantras/suktas/stotras from Devi Mahatmya, obviously I do Dhyan. The end result is the same, stilling of the mind. After you do your recital, homa, whatever practice, you have to sit motionless on your asan for at least 30mins. This stillness is of the mind too, only then it is really Dhyan. Whatever you experience in these minutes is your achievement, a few steps further on the road to Moksh.

 

Hindus worship Intelligent Consciousness

(There was this question. As my answer was too long posted it as a full-fledged post.

Hi, But Shri Vishnu Sahasranama is suggested by Bhishma in the presence of Shri Krishna in the Mahabharat for Liberation. Doesn’t this mean worship of Vishnu as the god among the trinity is superior? Or is it suggestive of worship of Sattva Guna for transcending the Gunas? Thank you.)

Marma points, Heal your body yourself.

This is one of the most secretive part of Ayurved. There are very few texts and very few of them are in public domain. There are a few Vaidya /Ayurved-acharya (Ayurvedic doctors) families in South India (mainly Tamil nadu and Kerala) and some ancient brahmin families in Uttarakhand, who have these books and techniques as family secrets. Some of these books are ancient, still on birch-wood/Bhoj-patra. The ancient Rishi-s who have written on this topic are Sushurt, Vaagbhatt and Agastya.

Marma मर्मन् is a Sanskrit word meaning, articulation, weak point, hidden weakness, sensitive spot, quick acting, vital organ, hidden, anything that requires protection and needs to be concealed. There are 108 Marma points in the human body. 108 is the ‘magic’ number of Sanatan Dharma/Hinduism!

Marma points, Heal your body yourself.

 

There are a quite few Marma-chikitsa centers who offer therapy on the Marma points for deep healing, inner healing, removal of blocks etc. Be careful about these centers. Marma chikitsa, ie medical treatment using the Marma points, is a very useful and highly effective way to cure several incurable body/ mind conditions. If you are sure about the credentials of your Marma chikitsa center, (you can check out where the Vaidya-s have learnt it, check past patients experiences), then you should get a therapy done. It will help immensely, it is rather like magic sometimes! They use targeted pressure using massage and specific combinations of ayurvedic oils to manipulate the Marma points. It is a very precise science, not intuition, so be careful of ‘intuitive healers’ and such. If you are not sure about the credentials of the Vaidya-s, then it is advisable to not mess with your Marma points.

These Marma points are the vulnerable points of your body. Of the 108 points, 64 are highly vulnerable, getting hit/ cut here can cause death. There are knots of naadis which carry vital energy/pran, located under these Marma points, thus their extreme sensitivity. Indian fighting techniques like Kalari (which still survives in Southern India), Marma points are used to kill. Knowledge of Marma is integral to the science of the Living Ayurved and the science of War Dhanurvidya, both.

Marma points are of 6 types depending on which parts of the body they ‘join’.

  • Mamsa मांस marma – where muscles join
  • Asthi अस्ति marma – where bones join
  • Snyau स्नायु marma – tendons join here
  • Dhamni धमनि marma – where arteries join
  • Shira सिरा marma – where veins join
  • Sandhi सन्धि marma – where the major limbs of the body join

The size of a Marma point can be variable. Some are the size of a grain of rice, while some are the size of your palm. Even if you get hit on a Marma point it causes excruciating pain as the pran/ vital energy movement in the naadi is affected severely. The three elements of the body, the tri-dosh, vaat, kapha, pitta go out of balance and the body /mind goes into shock. There may be excessive bleeding or even no bleeding as basically the naadi-s are damaged. The flow of the pran (all five types of pran), in the whole body is disturbed. This is very dangerous. Being hit on some points will be instantly fatal, some will cause crippling effects and some will cause injury, all will hurt. In some marma points, if the hurt is caused by a weapon, removal of the stuck weapon will cause death. Again, Marmas were used to kill and heal, both.

Marma points, Heal your body yourself.

 

Writing in details is not possible in this post, and I am not a Vaidya. (If you are seriously unwell then you need to get medical help from a proper professional).  Here are some tips on small but significant things you can do at home for your own healing using the concepts of Marma. And also remember to protect these body parts from being hit/injured.

The most important Marma point of the body is the navel. The center of your entire body. A direct hit here can be fatal. Be very careful of your navel. Put a few drops of warm coconut oil in your navel every night, very gently massage this area. Do it for 21 days and see for yourself.

(Make sure you use only edible coconut oil for all this gentle massage stuff at home. It should be clearly marked ‘edible’. No mixed oils, no mineral oils, no chemical ingredients. Massage means a very gentle rubbing, no heavy pressure. Regular gentle circular motions, that is it. These are highly sensitive points.)

The center of the forehead, the location of your third eye chakra. I still remember when in school someone clicked their fingers on my forehead. I literally saw stars and breathing was disturbed. Don’t let anyone hit you here. Don’t even let random people touch you here! Some people have this habit of hitting their forehead when they forget/remember something. Get rid of this habit, it disturbs the entire Ida/ Pingala/ Sushumna system.

Then on the head are more points. The top of the head is extremely sensitive. You can try this tiny marma chikitsa yourself, take 1-2 tablespoons of warm coconut oil and do a self massage. Very gently with your whole palm, rub the top of your head. It takes about 15mins for this much oil to be absorbed into this point. More oil the better. Highly beneficial, do it at least once a week regularly. Overall energy will increase, sense of hearing, smell sight etc will improve. (Or you can ask your family member to do it for you). Hair will also improve as a side-benefit!

Then is the mid point between the edge of the eyes and the ears, a slight hollow in the skull, both sides. If you get a headache or feel stressed out, you can gently rub these points to get relief. You must be doing this already.

Marma points, Heal your body yourself.

The throat, the center hollow in the front and the two sides of the throat. (As a kid, I remember getting hit by a brother on the center hollow, I remember breathing but no pran flowing, then blacking out). Vishuddhi chakra with its Rudra granthi, very sensitive. One should always be careful of the head, throat and the spine/back.

 

Then on the shoulder, the point where the bones of the arm and collarbone meet in a complicated joint. The arm-pits are also quite sensitive. Also the points where the legs join the body, the inner hollow.

The entire fleshy palm and sole are sensitive areas, especially the center of the palm/sole. The webbing between your thumb and first finger is linked to your head. The next time you have a headache, try very gently pressing this web. (This is a snyau marma point and is also in the foot). As is the center of the wrist on the inner side. Your entire body is connected to your wrists and palms, also ankles and feet. It feels relaxing to get a foot oil massage just for this reason. You can get the same benefit by taking warm coconut oil in your palms and gently rubbing them together, applying gentle pressure, wrist upwards for 15 mins. And you can ask a family member to do the same gentle rubbing with coconut oil for your feet. (And you can return the favour later!).

The midpoint of your forearm and the midpoint of your upper arm. And the midpoint of the fleshy part of your calf and midpoint of the inner sides of the thighs in your legs. You must have noticed that calves ache when you are tired, it is not muscle pain, it is this pran movement issue. If you gently rub the marma point with oil as above, it will feel better quickly.

The tip of the knee and the elbow. I am sure we all have banged our elbows and frozen in pain. Well, the excruciating pain is because it is a Marma point.

Then the chest, on the diaphragm, the central point, where the abdomen and chest join. Here lies the Anahata chakra. On the chest, the entire aureole areas. Then lower is the Manipur chakra, this is the center of your waist above the navel linked to the solar plexus. The point of Swadhisthan chakra, midway between your navel and lower end of the abdomen, this is linked to the kidneys and urinary bladder. The Muladhar chakra ie the physical anus and the reproductive organs. These last are quite sensitive areas from the nadi/ pran flow point of view, if there is a cut here, it can be fatal.

On the back, personally, I feel the entire back is sensitive as the Ida/ Pingala/  Sushumna run sort of ‘below’ the backbone. Damage to the backbone area and a couple of inches on either side of it will affect pran flow in these three main nadis.

 

If you want to increase the efficacy of your self-massage try these simple things

  • If you know Reiki, or any other healing energy modality, reiki your oil hands to trigger the healing energies.
  • If you have learnt to make a Chi-ball, make it and put on in your oil bottle, with all intention of healing and perfect health.
  • Draw a healing rune on the oil bottle.
  • Pray to Danvantari, the form of Shri Vishnu who is the deity of Ayurved. Recite his mantra once or just think of him with gratitude and request his help.
  • Or call on your source of faith, request help from your Higher Self.
  • Play your favourite Sanskrit Shlok/ Mantra/ Stotra in the background. Intend that this healing energy enters the oil and your body.
  • Sit in the early morning Sun while doing this. Skin and oil together in the early morning Sun will give you your daily Vitamin D supplement.
  • If you feel drawn to any flower in the Bach flower system, use its energies in your healing process.
  • Know that this will work because you are doing it for yourself.

Try some of these small things from Marma if they appeal to you. If you do them regularly with positive intentions you will help your own body and mind and be happier and healthier.

 

Marma points, Heal your body yourself.