Mata, the Mother in Tantra

In our Dharma, we always refer to the Devi as Mata in Sanskrit and Maa, Amma, Maiyya, Mai, Aai, Mauli, etc in the local languages. We worship her in many forms. We see her in the land, in the rivers and in the forests. We address older women with respect as ‘mata-raam’. We also have a strong tradition of referring to the Guru and even the male deities as the Mother, eg in Maharashtra, Sant Jnyaneshwar, Shri Vitthal are also referred to as ‘mauli’, ‘mother’.

And this is not a random whim or mere sentiment. There is a reason why we do this. We first look for maternal love in the deity we adore, the Guru we follow and the consciousness we seek.

There are three levels of spiritual sadhak, viz. the Pashu, the Veer and the Divya.


If you have zero inclination towards the spiritual you are called a ‘pashu’. And when you start on your spiritual path, the energy is still ‘pashu’.

  • पशु means a creature, to see, an individual soul, jivatma, animal like state, etc.

At this level of consciousness you are convinced that you are a mere individual soul, a jivatma at the mercy of fate. You are convinced that this creation is totally real. You consider your body to be the complete reality, there nothing beyond the physical. You are confined only to that part of reality which you can sense with your 5 basic senses. You do not have the intellectual capacity nor the emotional stability nor the spiritual strength to accept/ realise that you yourself are the Para, Shivah, Advaita, Parameshwar etc. You need a prop, an anchor, a foundation, some support to survive in this unpredictable and dangerous universe. Unknown and uncontrollable forces driving you like a beast of burden. There is very limited free will available to you and also a very limited capacity to act intelligently. Your life is on auto pilot, your karmic fruits of your own past lives are the cruise control and you have no option but to endure /enjoy the ride. Whatever life serves, you have no option but to accept the situation. Just like the animals you see around you, you too are completely under the control of these nameless, irresistible forces. The world is a unpredictable place and you wander through aimlessly. In this state you first try to find support from other humans, your loved ones etc or in activities or even in addictions. Most of us are in this lowest stage of awareness where we don’t even realise that we are Pashu.

But there comes a time when you realise that these other humans are not capable of supporting their own selves in the first place, so them supporting you is out of the question. So you search for support elsewhere. If, through some positive karmic fruit, you choose a deity as your support then this is the first step of your spiritual journey. You become a spiritual aspirant, a sadhak. You progress slightly and consider yourself to be a small child, led by the hand of destiny. This is how the spiritual journey begins, with the Pashu mindset. This mindset neither understands its Reality nor the real power of the human birth. (Only in this human form can the limited soul realise its real limitless nature.) At this Pashu level there is a strong belief in duality and multiplicity. And the only support in this cruel world is the adored deity.

And it is for this beginner level of sadhak, that the worship of the Mother, the Mahamaya, Prakruti, Shakti, Shri, Mata, Devi is prescribed because at this stage the Eternal is most naturally seen in the aspect of a Mother. The aspirant must feel himself to be a child in the hands of the Mother. In every aspect, in his mind and also in his actions he must be able to trust her, worship her, respect her, all the time. He should feel a sense of Motherhood emanating from everything around him. The moorti of the Devi in the temple, the beggar woman standing on the street, a small girl walking on the road, the earth itself, the rivers, the wind, the skies. He must feel that the Eternal Mother is looking at him from everything, everywhere and at all times. He does pujas, mantra, pilgrimages, pujas and all sort of spiritual practices which make him constantly aware of the Mother’s love and protection at all times. He now feels that he is secure, a child sitting in the Devi’s lap. Once he grasps this essence of the ‘divine motherhood’, does he progress onwards.

माता Mata is the nominative singular of मातृ Matru and one of the meanings of Matru is ‘to know’, ‘the knower’. So Mata is the one who Knows. The Matru grants the knowledge which negates (Maa) your experience of creation and thus helps you transcend this game.

Devi Mahamaya has created the apparent duality, ie the jivatma/ individual soul. She is the Creator, the ‘Mother’. All of us who believe in duality are her children. She is the initial Creator. And to transcend this illusion of duality and to reach the non dual reality we have to go to her and through her, there is no other option. Or in other words, she is the route, the only one which will take you to your Self.

  • eg You start from home and go to your office via a particular route. After doing your work, you go back home via take this exact same route. You have to exit from this game of creation by the exact same route by which you arrived here. But over time, you have forgotten the route, so you have to first study it only then walk it. This ‘study’ is the worship of the Mother.


Initially this Mother is seen as a beautiful Devi carrying weapons, Veena, garland of severed heads, lotus etc. This is her sthool form, ie a form with an outer physical human-like shape. Later as the sadhak moves inwards, she shows him the geometric Yantra, the Mantra, energy forms of the Matruka, the seeds of the sound from which the creation is born. Then, as she, the Mahamaya, Kundalini, Chit Shakti, Vishuddha Shabda Shakti ascends through the chakra sequence, she dissolves the ‘seed sound mothers’ the Matrukas into the foundational Naada and this gradually destroys the appearance of duality. It is a long journey but if the sadhak trusts the Mata, she gradually and safely brings him to the next stage, the Veer.

  • वीर means a hero, brave, energy, fire, strength, son, reed, power, man, actor, eminent, chief, adept, someone who has achieved control over the power to create/ destroy.

The Veer state is technically when the kundalini crosses the Vishuddhi chakra. In this stage the sadhak is not a child in the Mother’s lap anymore. Nor is he an animal driven by desires, conditions, destiny, past karma etc. He has subdued ‘nature’, in the sense that the Mahamaya now creates/ destroys/ balances/ works/ changes as per his desire. He has taken the control of his life in his own hands, he is no more on autopilot. He has developed the intelligence and confidence to lead nature/Prakruti in any direction as per his wish, creation, equilibrium or destruction. However here too there is still a sense of duality as the sadhak still cannot fully comprehend the Eternal.


In the third stage called Divya, the sadhak with practice, fully identifies himself with the Non dual and realises the Self.

  • दिव्य means splendour, playful, heavenly, promise, oath, ordeal, sky, beautiful, supernatural etc.

Here the Naada is dissolved into the Bindu or Paranaada. And the Bindu further dissolves into the Non dual. Now the inner and the outer worlds are the same to him. He is ‘I’ Aham Brahmasmi as well as ‘this’ Ayam Atma Brahma. The concepts of Shakti, Mahamaya, etc are all reflected in the Para Shivah, Advaita, Self. This stage is realised via Vedant and Shri Vidya/ Tantra. (The Vedant gives the theory and the Shri Vidya/Tantra is the practice.)

The beginner Pashu has to learn cleanliness, physical and mental. Purification of the mind and the body is the basic requirement for starting on the spiritual path. Then he has to learn devotion towards the Mother in any form which comforts his mind. Then he should acquire the correct knowledge of the eternal Advaita and the limited Jivatma. As he refines his discerning intelligence, (vivek) he must also develop the strength to finally discard faulty concepts (vairagya). He has to choose the path of liberation/Moksh, after due study, practice, analysis and after drawing his own conclusions about it. If he, at any stage, feels that he wants to enjoy creation some more then he is always free to leave his sadhana. He is tested by his own Self, several times. Only when he conclusively chooses Moksh, does he reach that state of supreme consciousness.

In this journey from the Pashu to the Self, the aspirant has to first hold the hand of the Mother, there is no other way.

In my blog, I have recommended the most beautiful Sukta, Shri Sukta as the best, the easiest daily practice (post here) as the one sure shot solution for the prosperity. of your choice, the material or the ultimate.

(This post is in response to a question.)

Shri Vidya Tantra and the Vedant

Shri Vidya and Vedant is the same thing. There is no difference between the two.

The biggest proof of this statement is Adi Shankaracharya himself. He wrote extensive commentaries on the Upanishads, the Bhagwat Gita and the Brahma Sutra. In fact, the Bhagwat Gita became popular as a text only after he wrote his Bhashya on it. And the incredible Bhashya on the Brahmasutra is his gift to us, his shishyas. The foremost authority on the Vedant, he established the 4 Maths for systematically teaching Veds. And he wrote several fundamental texts of the Shri Vidya, eg the Soundarya Lahiri. He also established several temples where the Shri Chakra and several other yantras derived from it are worshipped. Right from the Himalay in Shrinagar, Kashmir to the seas of the Dakshin, he established several temples in our Bharat for the worship of the Shri Chakra. (There was a question so writing this mini-post.)

Shri Vidya and Vedant is exactly the same. All ‘Tantra’ derives from the Shri Vidya. There is a sookshma Tantra where you work with the energies of creation using only your Buddhi/ intelligence. (Buddhi is the finer, evolved version of the Manas). This sookshma Tantra requires an understanding of the Advaita as described in the Vedant. 

Advaita 18-66 Bhagvat Gita Part-1

So here is the ‘proof’…

In Shri Vidya, aka tantra, is based on several mantra, of which the 15 akshari Panchadashi mantra is fundamental. (It is a Guru mukhi Vidya. These mantra are given by a Guru as a Diksha to deserving Shishyas.)

In the Vedant, the first Mahavakya is, ‘Tat tvam asi’ roughly meaning ‘That you are’. When you approach an Atmajnyani Mahapurush, this is what he will say to you. In your local language or by any means, he will give you this Atma jnyan at the very first instant of your meeting him. This Jnyan is the start of the journey to the self. This line expands into the other three Mahavakyas, Aham brahmasmi, Prajnyanam brahma and Ayam atma brahma.

Now the analysis, 

The first line of the 15 lettered Mantra represents the Brahma, Vishnu, Rudra, Ishvara and Sadashiv energies which sequentially represent the five actions ongoing in this creation. The actions of shrushti – manifestation, sthiti – preservation, samhara – unmanifestation, tirodhana – delusion and anugraha – absorption of the creation in ‘I’, the Eternal, Non dual, Atma. 

And this is exactly what the ‘Tvam’ word in the Mahavakya means. These 5 actions are the ‘added on descriptions’ of the ‘I’. These five actions are the secondary or indicative attributes, ‘Tatastha lakshana’ of the Non dual. These five actions define the jivatma or the individual soul or the Maya or the manifestation or the Leela or the game of creation.

  • So the first line /kuta of the 15 Akshari Mantra = the ‘Tvam’ word/pad in the Mahavakya 

The akshars in the second line of the Mantra represent the qualities of – anand /happiness, satya/ the truth of existence, ananta / infinity of consciousness and Jnyan /knowledge of the Atma.

And this is exactly the same in the Vedant. ‘My’ inherent nature, is the ‘Tat’ word in the Mahavakya. This word represents the inbuilt qualities of the Advaita. These exact same ones, Sat Chit Ananda and Brahmajnyan, existence, consciousness, happiness and the knowledge of the Self are the Svaroopa lakshana of the Atma.

  • So the second line of the 15 Akshari Mantra = ‘Tat word/pad of the Mahavakya.

And the final line of the 15 Akshari Mantra has to be analysed in two parts. The first part is the first three akshars which represent the jivtama, creation, game, Maya, individual soul, manifested Shakti etc. And the second part is the last beej akshar which represents the Atma. This last line firmly states that the Jivtama = the Paramatma.  There is only the all pervading Non dual Atma who Is. 

Similarly the last word of the Mahavakya ‘asi’ states this same concept, the ‘sameness’. We may think that we are the individual souls, the jivatmas, separate from each other, separate from the Parabrahma, playing the game of creation, this is conditional reality. But ultimately we are the same Non dual Atma, which is is only one absolute reality.

  • So the third word of the Mahavakya and the third line of the 15 Akshari Mantra are same. 

Jagat Guru Adi Shankaracharya

Shri Vidya is the Vedant and the Vedant is the Shri Vidya. Both require that same level of intelligence/ Buddhi. Without this Buddhi you cannot get anywhere in your spiritual progress.

So find a genuine Guru (very rare), Acharya or Brahmin or Gurukul (several options) who teaches the Vedant. This means the basic Bhagwat Gita, then the 10 foundational Upanishads from Isha to Bruhataranyak with their Bhashya by Adi Shankaracharya, then the Bhashya he has written on the Bhagwat Gita and the final is the Brahmasutra and its Bhashya by Adi Shankaracharya. This is the syllabus for complete understanding of the Vedant, about 15-20yrs of committed study. But at least the path here is defined. And even if you do not meet a proper teacher, at least read the Sanskrit texts, a few shloks/ day. Eg the Bhagwat Gita, one Sanskrit shlok/day. Do practice ‘Soham’. Just this much will start the energy moving within you. Chances of messing up here are relatively low. 

Shri Vidya schools and mantras are very diverse and here too there are very few genuine Gurus. And there is a significantly higher chance of being diverted and cheated by pretenders and unscrupulous practitioners. So I recommend just a regular recitation of the Shri Sukta as the gentlest and the most effective practice. And to consciously practice Soham with every breath you take. If you do this sincerely, a Guru will arrive to guide you onwards.

If you need a focus point, then worship a deity from the Karmakanda, ie the Bhagwans, Shankar, Vishnu, Brahma, Aditya, Chandra, Ganapati, Skanda, etc or the Devis Parvati, Laxmi, Sarasvati, Ganga etc. Or devote yourself to the Atma Jnyani mahapurush, but be sure that the Guru you have chosen for such worship is really an Atmajnyani, else you will be in serious trouble. Be selfless for at least these 5 mins daily. Offer everything you have to your deity with all the love you feel in your heart. This will move things forward.

And this is primarily a blog on Jyotish so this daily routine will also help you learn Jyotish. Patterns in the horoscopes will become evident and easily. Intuition will develop and your predictions will be accurate.

If you are clear on the Vedant then Shri Vidya will arise very naturally and vice versa. Once you know that you are the energy and the holder of the energy and that both are the same, everything changes in the most beautiful way possible. 

Ultimately Vedant and Tantra are reflections of your own Self. Find your Self and you will gain it all.

Soham and Hamsa the Ajapa mantra

I have written posts on the Ajapa mantras, Soham and Hamsa earlier (index). Soham and Hamsa are the same energy, they both will take you to the same destination, they are both equal. But there is a subtle difference in the thought that they express, both routes are slightly different. 

The Ajapa mantra are inherent in the sounds embedded in the breath. All living beings continuously recite the Ajapa mantra with every breath they take, but unconsciously. The initial objective of spiritual practice is to become aware of this continuous mantra jaap. This 5 layered body, panchakosh in which we, the individual soul, exist in, is ‘made from’ this Ajapa jaap, the ‘soundless speech’.

The sound ‘Sa’ exists in the inhalation/ Purak and the sound ‘Ha’ is embedded in the exhalation/ Rechak. And as I have mentioned earlier also, when you reach the Unmani avastha, the Ha and Sa vanish, ie you stop exhaling/ inhaling and remain in the Kumbhak state, this is the 4th stage of Om. The goal of spiritual practice is to go beyond the sound form of Consciousness, Shabda Brahma and reach into the soundless Arth, the Self hidden in the sound. Thus the Ajapa mantra are a fast track system for Moksh.

Om has four stages (ref Mandukya Upanishad). Waking – Jagrut, dreaming – Swapna and deep sleep – Sushupti are the three routine stages which we all go through in our lives. The silence that comes after you recite the Om is the fourth stage. In this state, the Mind is in the Unmani avastha and you are in your Self. When this stage occurs during Dhyan, it is called ‘Samadhi’, or more properly it is the Turiya state of the Vedant. You cross the boundaries of the creation and exist firmly in the ‘Soundless’ Atma. For the spiritual aspirant, this stage occurs temporarily while sitting on the Asan. The objective of all spiritual practice is to exist in this stage always, this is called the Parama-hamsa or the Jivanmukt state.

This subtle analysis of Soham and Hamsa is just a technicality. You can approach the Atma, the Self, from either direction. Both are the same energy and have the same power to pull you towards yourself. 

Soham – When you start your Dhyan with an inhalation and end it in an exhalation the mantra is ‘Soham’ ‘Sah Aham’ सः अहं, I am He’. Here the idea expressed is ‘Aham Brahmasmi’. I am that Atma. You can understand Soham in two ways depending on your level of evolution.

  • If you think that you are the Jivatma, then the subject ‘I’ is creation/ Maya/ Shakti or the jivatma the individual soul. With every ‘Soham’, the Jivatma says that it is the Atma/ Advaita / the ultimate auspiciousness, ie the Para Shivah itself. By continually asserting this fact, with time, transcendence takes place. In one line, ‘When Shakti looks at Shivah, it says Soham’ 
  • If you are confident that you are the Atma, the Advaita. Then Soham also means that the Para Shivah is continually reasserting that it is verily the Self. This is the Anuttarah avastha or the Vedant Vichar, also called the Turiyateet in some books. In one line, ‘When Shivah is in itself, it is Soham’.

Hamsa – if you start your Dhyan with an exhalation and end it with the inhalation then the Ajapa mantra is ‘Hamsa’ ‘He is Me’. Here the idea expressed is more on the lines of ‘Ayam Atma Brahma’. If you analyse the Mahavakya, then the fourth one in sequence is that ‘everything around me is verily my own self’. This is the expansion of the identity to encompass everything and everyone.

  • So in this thought process, with every ‘Hamsa’, the Atma/Brahma is saying that everything or all creation or Maya or Shakti is the same Me/ Atma/ Brahma. With Hamsa, the Ultimate Shivah says that he himself is the manifested Maya. In one line, ‘when Shivah looks at Shakti, it says Hamsa.’ 
  • Also ‘When Shivah is in itself, it is Hamsa’. The Advaita Shivah is continually asserting that ‘it itself is the only known’.

But still, for beginners on the spiritual path, I would recommend ‘Soham’ as the easier path. Right now, we are all under the impression that we are the Jivatma thus ‘Soham’ vichar/ thought is more suited for this mindset. Soham is the samhaarrupa of the Paramatma, ie it will destroy the anandmayikosh, ie linga sharir which is the seat of ignorance. It will also destroy the sachit karma and change the perception from the limited jivatma to that of the Advaita Paramatma.

The foundational thought/ Vichar of the Vedant is Soham as Aham Brahmasmi and also the Hamsa as Ayam Atma Brahma. And these two, Soham and Hamsa are also used in several mantra, yantra and tantra. You will find references to Soham and Hamsa in several standard books in the Upanishads and also in the Tantra.

Both are equally powerful and whatever you practice, keep on doing it. Convert every breath consciously into the Ajapa Mantra and be the Self.

(This mini-post is in response to a question on Hamsa and Soham)

Length and Rate of your breathing

We are breath, or more more correctly we are linked to this manifested creation primarily by the movement of air through our nostrils. To go beyond the limits imposed by the manifested, the first step is control of the breath. If you control your breath, you naturally control the pran moving within you. If you can control your pran, you automatically control your mind. Your mind is like a ball in your hand, it jumps up and down with the movement of pran. If you still the movement of pran, you also still your mind. The pran’s movement stills when you still your breathing, ie achieve Keval Kumbhak state, where there is no breathing in nor breathing out. If your Mind goes still, you achieve the ‘unmani-state’, beyond-Mind. After you reach this Unmani state, you hear the continuous ‘Nada’, the sound of the unmanifested. If you can dissolve your limited consciousness in the sound of the Nada, you achieve the Eternal.

Length and Rate of your breath

Our regular breathing is very turbulent. It depends on the physical movement of the body but it also depends significantly on your emotions and your thoughts. Check your breathing pattern when you are happy, sad, angry, upset, relaxed, focussed, etc and observe for yourself how it varies.

All texts on breathing and Dhyan will talk about the length of the breath and the rate of breathing.

  • This is how you determine the length of your breathing in comparison to your own finger-widths, a measure called angula. Switch off the fan in your room first, it should not be windy inside. Place some cotton fibres or a very thin thread on the back of your hand and keep it at some distance from your nose. Be at rest, relax and breathe normally. As you exhale on the cotton fibres they will move with the force of the exhaled air. Try to find out till what distance from your nose, the cotton fibres visibly move with your exhaled breath. Measure this distance from your nostrils to the fibres with a piece of thread. Now count how many finger-widths long is your breath when you are at rest.
  • Now to measure your breathing rate. Sit in a relaxed position. Set a timer for 5 mins. Count your breathing, ie one inhale and one exhale is one breath. eg If you count 52 breaths in 5 mins, then it is average at about 10 breaths per minute. eg If it is 68 breaths in 5 mins it is approximately 14 breaths per minute. As per science, the average human breathing rate at rest is 12 per minute.

Your life span is measured in breaths, not years. If you breathe slowly, you will live longer, look younger and be more healthy. But you should not force yourself to stop/slow breathe, if you do so, you will damage your body and your nadi-s. This should happen spontaneously and it will happen gradually as you do your spiritual practice.

(This photograph of my Sat-guru was taken in 1990, he was physically 85yrs old then.)


If your breathing is fast, forced, laboured, intense etc the air will be displaced for a longer distance from your nose. ie the length of the breath will increase. As per the texts, this is how the activities affect your breath, eg eating increases the length to 18 angula, walking increases it to 20 angula, run­ning to 24 angula, sexual activity to 60 angula etc. If the length of the exhaled breath is longer, it reduces your life-span. The reason is that with every exhaled breath, you are also exhaling pran from your system. Generally you lose more pran than you pull in from the universe as your exhaled breath is always longer than your inhaled breath. And if the exhaled breath is made longer by engaging in strenuous activities or mental turbulence, even more pran goes out. (So over-indulgence in sexual activity is not advisable for spiritual aspirants, 60 angula long-breath!)

When you breathe slowly, without any jerks, the exhaled air moves out with less force, ie it’s length in angula becomes shorter. As the breathing becomes slow, it also becomes less turbulent, the flow of the pran in the nadi-s becomes smoother, more subtle, thinner? It actually becomes a fine needle of pure gold/ silver shimmer. In Dhyan, you are supposed to actively open your central Sushumna and close the Ida and Pingala. When such smooth subtle flow of pran moves through the Sushumna it effectively ‘cleans’ it out. Once the Sushumna is ‘clean’, all karmic impurities/ blockages are removed, it becomes very easy for the kundalini to rise up through it in one continuous smooth flow. It is always better for the spiritual aspirant if the Kundalini moves only after the Sushumna is clean from the Mooladhar to the Brahmarandhra.

So the point is that if you reduce the breathing rate and reduce the length of breath which actually happens simultaneously, you will increase the length and quality of your life and also gain control over your pran, Mind and also on the people around you and the environment you live in. Here is what the texts say,

  • If it is 10 angula, you gain peace of mind which lasts for a long time.
  • If it is 9 angula, you can spontaneously write, prose, music etc which have deep impacts on others.
  • If it is 8 angula, you will be able to speak spontaneously without hesitation. Your words will cause deep impact on those who hear you.
  • If it is 7angula, your vision will change, seeing into the past, present, future, parallel is possible now.
  • If it is 6 angula, you can move your body through air.
  • If it has gone to 5 angula, now onwards, your progress in your spiritual practice becomes very fast.
  • If it goes to 4 angula, you will attain the eight major siddhis (anima, mahima, garima, laghima, prakamya, ishitva, vashitva, kamavashayitva) and the several minor siddhis.
  • If it goes down to 3 angula, you gain the nava nidhi vidya the 9 types of consciousnesses. These are said to be under the control of Yaksharaj Kuber.
  • If it goes upto 2 angu­la, then the body is not longer a binding, you can change the shape of your 5-layered body.
  • If it reduces to 1 angula, you can become invisible and exist in just the subtle or causal body. Time, space and other dimensions lose their dominion on you.
  • Finally when the breathing stops, ie there is no exhalation or inhalation, Keval Kumbhak is attained, now the further process of Self realization starts in real earnest.

So as you do your spiritual practice, with time, your breathing will slow down and stop intermittently and then fully. It is nothing to be scared of. You don’t need air to remain alive in this created world. You need only pran, and it can be pulled in not just through the nostrils but also via the skin and majorly through the top of the head. This ability to consciously pull in pran increases, as you do your spiritual practice. So as an aspirant, your only job is to breathe with Soham, the rest of it will happen spontaneously and naturally.


Length and Rate of your breath

Sounds heard during meditation

There was a question on this, so a quick post. As you do your regular spiritual practice using the mantras Soham or Hamsa or Om, you will see signs of your progress. These are not achievements in any sense of the word, just signs that you are following your route. As per the Hamsa upanishad this is the sequence of the sounds,

  1. Chinni – a single sound heard occasionally, like a single chirrup of a cricket
  2. Chinni- chinni – a sound like crickets, but tinkling-like and pleasant.
  3. Bells ‘Ghanta’ ringing – a deep tolling bell
  4. Conch ‘Shankh’ being blown
  5. A musical instrument’s string being plucked ‘Tantri’
  6. Cymbals ‘taal’ 
  7. Flute ‘Venu’
  8. Drums ‘Mridanga’
  9. War drum ‘Bheri’ 
  10. Thundering ‘Megh-naad’ 

When you do your practice and do it for sometime, you first hear the single ‘chini’ type of sound occasionally. Then when you start hearing the second sound and till the last thundering sound, these sounds are on all the time, a muted continuous background sound. You can hear them all the time if you are in a silent room. In fact you can feel their vibrations in your body if you are sitting quietly in a silent room. Sometimes one sound will predominate and at other times some other sound. Some of the sounds are on high pitch and some are very low bass notes. Each is a constant sound, eg you will not hear varying pitches in the stringed instrument, it will be like someone picked just one string and its sound is heard constantly. It not like someone is playing your chakras like a guitar! You have to sit in a silent room as they cannot be heard properly in a noisy environment. If you use ear plugs, you might miss out the lowest pitched ones. Also do not plug your fingers in your ears, as you will then ‘hear’ the muscles in your fingers snapping, this will interfere with your ‘listening’ to your inner sounds. A silent room is best. 

You will also hear other sounds as your Ajnya chakra gets more charged up. Eg sounds of bumble bees, birds twittering, frogs croaking, wind rushing, the constant flow of a river, white noise etc. You will also hear single sharp cracks and thudding sounds as if a wood has snapped or a huge weight has fallen next to you. You will hear so many sounds in your Dhyan. But these are one-off sounds, you don’t hear them always on.

And don’t worry if you don’t hear them all or all in sequence or if you do not remember hearing them. In deep Dhyan, the Mind, both conscious and unconscious, is switched off. So whatever visions appear before you or sounds you hear, you might not be able to clearly remember them after you get up.

Sounds heard during mediation

Then while you are ‘hearing’ all this you will also have these effects on your body. These really happen so do not feel scared when they start. Pran moves along your body in waves, so the hair on your skin all stand up for minutes (very common). You feel coolness on your skin. You feel wind rushing on your skin. Your throat constricts and your sound box moves upwards. The body muscles contract and tremble spasmodically. You might feel pain and then again it gets soothed. There may be cycles of these sensations. You might feel pressure in your third eye area, or on the top of your head at specific points, you might feel coldness trickling down your head. You might feel your third eye ‘pop’, ie something like ‘air’ popped out from there. Your backbone might stiffen, your neck posture can rearrange itself. Eyes will get sealed shut, you will not be able to open them even if you want to. 

But in Dhyan, you are not supposed to get involved in observing these things. Your only job is to sit comfortably, breathe slowly, focus on the third eye and recite your mantra in your mind.

Then these things initially happen only when you are actively sitting on your Asan and focussing intently. The Mind has to be still. These generally won’t happen when you are in office and doing your official stuff. (But if you take a 5min break and do a quick mini-Dhyan in office you can experience all this there too.) And as this happens when you are doing your Dhyan you might not really be aware of these separate processes. I really wasn’t aware of much of these things until I read the Hansa Upanishad. As I read the descriptions I realised that this stuff had happened but I was so immersed that it did not register nor did I remember it when I got up.

The Upanishad says these following are the effects on the body as you progress, body feels pins and needles, hair stand up. Then there is pain as the pran pierces through the Sushumna nadi. (Or you might feel an oily dense liquid thing which would be the Kundalini moving) You might feel that things are snapping and breaking inside you. Shivering and trembling of muscles occurs. Saliva collects in your mouth. Then nectar collects in your throat, ie the secretions of the pineal gland are now available for your conscious use. You will be made aware of the secret knowledge ie things which you had read earlier will now give different secret meanings, you will spontaneously ‘know’ so many things about yourself and others around you. Then you will know the secret of mantras also you will hear mantras being spoken in your ears as you do your Dhyan, or even when you are sitting silently anywhere. The 9th step is that you gain control over your body, ie you can dissolve it to pure energy and reform it again wherever you want. You will also gain complete control over your Ajnya chakra, you will be able to ‘see’ energies which cannot be described. The last step is the realisation of the Parabrahma at the Brahma-randhra ie at the very top of your head, at the very ‘center’ of the Sahasrara chakra complex. 

Your 5-layered body is the vehicle with which your Soul will cross the geometry created by Prakruti and your Soul will finally realise itself. These signs are very clearly mentioned in several texts and they do happen. For some aspirants they may merge into one single event and they may not even realise that these have happened. These are not achievements, they are merely signposts that you are on the right route and progressing. However interesting these on-the-way things may seem to be. You as a spiritual aspirant should never relax your focus on the ultimate prize, Moksh