Tuesday, June 30, 2015
Mind and Matter
Mind is not a gross thing, visible and tangible; its existence is nowhere seen; its magnitude cannot be measured; it does not require space in which to exist. Mind and matter are two aspects, or subject and object of one and the same all full Brahman - who is itself neither and yet includes both.
Mind precedes matter; this is the vedantic theory. Matter precedes mind; this is the scientific theory. Mind is immaterial only in the sense that it has not the characteristics of ponderable matter. It is not immaterial in the sense that Brahman - pure spirit - is.
Mind is the subtle form of matter. Hence it is the prompter of the body. Mind is made of subtle, pure (satvic), atomic matter. Mind is all electricity. It is formed of the subtlest portion of food.
The soul is the only source of intelligence; it is self-evident; it shines with its own light.
The organs or mind and senses derive their principle of activity and life from the soul. By themselves they are lifeless. Hence the soul is always the subject and never the object. Mind is the object of the soul.
It is a cardinal principle of vedanta that that which is an object for a subject is non-intelligent. Even the principle of self-consciousness is non-intelligence - it does not exist by its own light; it is the object of apperception to the soul.
Mind is composed of coarse or fine matter, according to the needs of the more or less unfolded consciousness connected with it. In the educated it is active and well defined. In the undeveloped it is cloudy and ill-defined.
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Absolute consciousness is common to all. It is one. All the workings of the mind are presented to the one common consciousness which is the witness of the mental vrittis. It is the mind that limits man, who is in reality, identical with Brahman.
This identity is realised when the veil of ignorance is removed. For Brahman, the mind is an object of perception. Atman directly cognises all the phenomena of the mind - desires, imagination, doubt, belief, shame, intellect, fear, etc., - and yet remains quite unattached and unaffected.
Monday, June 29, 2015
Mind is All
Mind alone is the whole world, with its pains, old age, death, sin, earth, water, fire, air and ether, and all the internal organs. Mind binds man. He who has controlled his mind is a veritable god on earth. We live in a world of thoughts. First there is the thought, and then there is the expression of that thought through the organ of speech.
Thought and language are intimately connected. Loving thoughts uplift and encourage others. Unkind thoughts, thoughts of anger, bitterness and malice injure others. Thoughts are things. Sound, touch, taste, form and odour, the waking, dream and deep sleep states - all are the products of the mind only.
Thoughts such as passion, anger, bondage, time - know all these to be the results of the mind. The only true laboratory is the mind. Study it, test it and then go beyond it. Then you will realise the truth; then you will discover the hidden soul. Only if your mind is quiet will you enjoy peace in your own home, as you will enjoy it in the forest.
Man has a mind. But mind is not man. Mind is a good servant. It is an instrument only. Utilise it tactfully and properly. The prime requisite for happiness is control of the mind or lower self. Your thought is imprinted on your face. Mind is a bridge that connects the human with the divine.
Your body, your business, your house, are all only ideas within your own mind. Thought is a dynamic force. Good thought is the first perfection; it is the real wealth. Emotion is the driving force at the back of the mind. Will-power is the master-key to success. Knowledge, thought, intellect and reason are one.
Appetite, instinct, impulse and desire are one. Emotion, ambition, spirit and courage are one. The mind is the master of the body. The soul is the master of the mind. Thou art, in essence, immortal soul. Thou art above body and mind. Always remember this supreme fact and live in the awareness of thy spiritual nature.
Sunday, June 28, 2015
The Source of the Mind
Creation, preservation, destruction, veiling and blessing are God's five kinds of actions. God is the ruler, the knower of the heart, and the prompter. He helps the student in a variety of ways through dreams, the inner voice, talking through the mouths of others in conversation and in advice from friends.
Eternal bliss, supreme peace, eternal satisfaction, infinite happiness and unbroken joy can be had only in God. Attain God-consciousness or Self-realisation through exclusive devotion to one aspect of the Lord, or by self-enquiry.
When, by analysing your own mind, you come face to face with something which is never destroyed, something which by its own nature is eternally pure, perfect, self-luminous and unchanging, you will no longer be miserable or unhappy. The nature of Brahman is satchidananda (existence knowledge bliss absolute). What limits the individual soul's vision? It is only the mind.
Between the Atman (Self) and the organs of the senses, a connecting link is necessary. We acknowledge the existence of an internal organ, the mind, through which perception takes place. If we do not admit the internal organ, there would result either perpetual perception or perpetual non-perception.
Perception results when there is conjunction of Atman, the sense and the object (these are the three instruments of perception). If this effect did not follow, perpetual non-perception would take place.
Neither is the case however. We have therefore to acknowledge the existence of an internal organ, on whose attention and non-attention perception and non-perception take place. This is the argument for the existence of the mind.
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Mind is nothing but a collection of impressions. It is a bundle of habits. It is a collection of desires arising from contact with different objects. It is a collection of feelings aroused by worldly botherations; of ideas gathered from different objects. These desires, ideas and feelings change constantly.
Some of the old desires and feelings are constantly departing from the store house, the mind, and being replaced by new ones. This constant change does not in any way interfere with the harmony of mental operations. Some ideas and feelings depart and those that remain work in healthy cooperation with the new arrivals. They work in harmony and this harmony sustains the identity of mental existence.
Saturday, June 27, 2015
The Secret of Yoga Sadhana
I solemnly affirm that the disease of birth and death can be removed only through the divine panacea of mind mastery; not through any other means. The path of annihilation of the mind will be most beneficial to you and will never generate the least of pains. If the mind is destroyed by dint of discrimination, then maya (illusion) will not afflict you. There is no other vessel on this earth to sail the ocean of rebirth, than mastery of this turbulent mind.
Tame the mind. Collect your thoughts. Keep the mind serene. Think not of evil. You will enter the realm of deathlessness, dominion of eternal bliss. Withdraw the senses from their objects. Collect the rays of the mind. Direct the mind towards the ajna chakra (or the space between the eyebrows) and fix it there steadily.
Understand the mind; know how to manage it. Mind abhors a vacuum. Aversion and desire, both are binding - two monkeys sitting on the tree of the heart. While they continue to shake and agitate it there can be no peace.
Man falls into the cycle of births and deaths through his own thoughts, his own ignorance. Liberation means nothing but the destruction of the impurities of the mind. If your mind is free and pure, you will not again enter into birth.
Control of the mind is not done in a day but by constant practice and sustained dispassion.
Victory will be yours. Become a true hero. Have mastery over the mind. Enter the illimitable realms of bliss. Blessed is he who has controlled his mind and achieved self-conquest.
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Dispassion, discrimination, renunciation and meditation are enemies of the mind. You can destroy the mind easily, if you possess these virtues. The mind manifests itself as the external world in the shape of pain and pleasure. The mind subjectively is consciousness, while objectively it is this universe. The mind has the potency of creating or undoing the world in the twinkling of an eye.
"The same dhyana is samadhi when it shines with the object alone, as it were, devoid of itself." (III-3)
When the mind is completely absorbed in meditation it is termed samadhi. The mind loses its own consciousness and becomes identified with the object of meditation. The meditator and the meditated, the thinker and the thought, the subject and the object, become one.
In concentration the mind is simply fixed on the object. In meditation the mind is filled with one idea of the object alone. All other thoughts are shut out. In samadhi the mind is stilled, the subconscious is silenced, the thoughts are controlled and all surging, bubbling emotions are subdued. The yogi passes into the transcendental calm or the stupendous ocean of silence and attains the transcendental knowledge of Brahman the eternal. Samadhi installs you in the Atman. Through samadhi the finite Self is absorbed in the infinite or absolute consciousness.
Samadhi is beyond the reach of mind and speech. There is no language or means to give expression to it. Even in worldly experience you cannot express the taste of an apple to one who has not tasted it, or the nature of a colour to a blind man.
Samadhi or blissful divine experience arises when the ego and the mind are dissolved. It is a state to be attained by one's own effort. It is limitless, divisionless and infinite, an experience of being and of pure consciousness. When this experience is realised the mind, desires, actions and feelings of joy and sorrow vanish into a void.
In samadhi there is no mental tension. There is perfect stillness or perfect poise. There is total mental inhibition. The senses, the mind and the intellect cease functioning. Form-perception and reflex-perception totally vanish. The meditator loses his individuality and becomes identical with the Supreme Self. He becomes an embodiment of bliss, peace and knowledge. Just as the river joins the ocean, the individual soul mixes with the Supreme Soul. All limitations and differences disappear. The yogi attains the highest knowledge and eternal bliss. This is the aim of existence, the final beatitude of life. The yogi is an established sage or an illumined jivanmukta now. He is liberated while living, he is absolutely free from pain, sorrow, fear, doubt and delusion. He has become identical with Brahman. The bubble has become the ocean. The river has joined the ocean, and has become the ocean. All differences and distinctions will totally vanish. He will experience: "I am the immortal Self. All indeed is Brahman. There is nothing but Brahman."
When the mind is concentrated on Brahman (Supreme Self) it becomes one with Brahman, like camphor with the flame, salt with water or water with milk. Mind melts in Brahman and becomes of the nature of Brahman. The meditator becomes Brahman. Then there is no duality. This is the state of kaivalya, a state beyond description. It induces awe, supreme joy and unalloyed felicity. You will have to realise it yourself.
True samadhi gives super-sensual knowledge. All doubts, delusions and the three knots of nescience (avidya), desire (kama) and action (karma) are destroyed by the fire of wisdom. It gives absolute fearlessness and an unruffled state of mind. This state is described in detail in the second chapter of the Bhagavad Gita.
The ultimate Truth or Brahman or the Absolute can be experienced by all persons by regular practice of meditation with a pure heart. Mere abstract reasoning and study of books will not do. What is wanted is direct experience.
Direct experience is the source for higher intuitional knowledge or divine wisdom. This experience is super-conscious or transcendental. There is neither the play of the senses nor the intellect here. It is not an emotional experience. There is revelation, insight or intuition. The senses, mind and intellect are at perfect rest and they do not function at all. This experience is neither an imaginary experience of a visionary dreamer, a reverie nor an hypnotic trance. It is a solid living truth like a fruit on the palm of your hand. The third eye or the eye of wisdom is opened in the experiencer. The extraordinary experience comes from cognition through the spiritual eye or the eye of intuition. The eye of wisdom can be opened when the senses, mind and intellect cease functioning, when the Brahmakara vritti (where the mind thinks of Brahman to the exclusion of all other thoughts) is raised by completely eradicating all desires, wrath, greed, pride, egoism and hatred.
There is neither darkness nor void in this experience. It is all light. There is neither sound nor touch nor form here. It is a magnanimous experience of unity, or oneness. There is neither time nor causation here. You become omniscient and omnipotent, you become the 'all-knower'. You know everything in detail. You know the whole mystery of creation and get immortality, higher knowledge and eternal bliss.
All dualities vanish here. There is neither subject nor object, neither form nor formlessness, neither duality nor non-duality. There is neither tossing of the mind nor one-pointedness. There is neither gain nor loss, neither pleasure nor pain, neither east nor west, neither day nor night.
This state is beyond all relativity. It is not a state of inertia or nothingness, but a state of 'everythingness'. You enter into a state of absolute awareness, in which time and place disappear; every place is 'here', every period of time is 'now' and everything is 'I'. In this state you obtain bliss and eternal life, you transcend the limitations of empirical existence and attain a rich inner life. It is not merely an emotional enthusiasm or an exhilarating feeling. It is direct, unique intuitive experience of Truth or Absolute consciousness. It is blissful union, a state of pure consciousness beyond all expression, feeling, throbbing and thrill. There is perfect awareness in samadhi. The aspirant rests in his centre — the goal of his search — and realises absolute freedom, independence and perfection.
Samadhi is the means of liberation or freedom from births and deaths. It leads to the direct intuitive perception of the Truth or the Infinite. It puts an end to all troubles of life and the causes of rebirth. It annihilates the impressions or samskaras which give rise to fresh births, and it helps one to tide over even the karma that determines one's present life, even though all the fruition of his past karma has not ended. In samadhi there is no perception of duality, which is the cause for fear. Avidya (ignorance) is absent.
The sage born of samadhi-experience gets established in his own Self. He is endowed with cosmic vision and transcendental divine knowledge.
It is only through samadhi that you can know the Unknown, see the Unseen and get access into the Inaccessible. The sum total of all knowledge of the three worlds and of all secular sciences is nothing but mere husk when compared to the infinite knowledge of a sage who has attained the highest state of samadhi. Samadhi bestows supreme knowledge, you are freed from the wheel of birth and death and get liberation.
If the desires and attachment to the objects of the world vanish entirely, and if you are in that immovable state, you have become a jivanmukta. You will abide in your own Self. You will rest in the non-dual supreme seat. The jnana-vision will arise in you. The light of wisdom will shine unobscured like the sun in the absence of clouds. You will be absolutely free from delusion and sorrow. You will actually feel that the Self alone pervades and permeates everywhere in this world. You will shine with the effulgence of Brahman. You will possess equal-vision and a balanced mind. You will be free from longing for sensual objects, because the mind will always be made cool with the bliss of Brahman. You will be bathed in the cool ambrosial nectar that flows from a contented and quiescent mind.
Samadhi comes only after constant and protracted practice of meditation. It is not a commodity that can be obtained easily. Those who can really enter into samadhi are very very rare.
How to Attain Samadhi
Faith or confidence in the efficacy of yoga, power for concentration of the mind, memory for contemplation, samadhi and discernment or the direct perception brought about by meditation, become the means for the attainment of the supreme.
To begin with, meditation should be done on a gross form. When you advance in meditation you can take to abstract meditation, or meditation on subtle things or ideas. The mind should be gradually disciplined and trained in meditation. It cannot all at once enter into the highest asamprajnata samadhi or that which constitutes the highest subtle essence. That is the reason why Patanjali Maharishi has described the practice of various kinds of lower samadhis. When the mind is extremely attached to gross objects it is not possible to fix it on subtle objects all at once. There must be a gradual ascent in the ladder of yoga. You should place your foot cautiously on each rung of the ladder. You should pass through successive stages before you attain the highest asamprajanata or nirvikalpa samadhi. But those who have passed through the lower stages in their previous births can attain to the highest stage at the very outset through the grace of the Lord. If the yoga student has reached a higher stage he need not revert to the lower stages.
Samadhi becomes natural through long practice of intense meditation, and not through pranayama or any hatha yoga practice.
In neophytes, pratyahara (abstraction) first takes place. Then dharana (concentration) begins. Then dhyana (meditation) slowly commences. Before samadhi manifests, their minds, getting impatient and tired, drop down. In trained yogis you cannot say where pratyahara ends and dharana begins, where dharana ends and dhyana begins, where dhyana ends and samadhi begins. The moment they sit on the meditation seat all the processes occur simultaneously with electric or lightning speed, and they enter into samadhi at their conscious will.
There are four classes of yogis:
1. Prathama-kalpika, one who is just a beginner or neophyte. The light is just appearing. He has not attained any siddhis. He is just practising savitarka samadhi.
2. Madhu bhumika, one who has entered nirvitarka samadhi and who has attained intuition. The stage is also called madhumati, because it brings such knowledge as gives satisfaction, just as honey does. (Madhu means honey.)
3. Prajna jyoti, the yogi who has attained mastery over the elements and the senses. This yogi cannot be moved or tempted by the invitations of celestial beings even. He has attained the stage of madhu-pratika.
4. Atikrantabhananiya, the yogi who has attained the stages of sorrowlessness and thoughtlessness. He has attained kaivalya or full independence.
The raja yogi can get all siddhis without samyama by spontaneous illumination through purity. Prasankhyanam is the highest illumination, through full discrimination between purusha (spirit) and prakriti (nature).
The disciple should not sit idle and expect a miracle from the guru to push him directly into samadhi. Just as a man anxiously seeks the means of escape from the midst of a burning house, so also the aspirant should have a burning desire to free himself from the fire of worldly existence (samsara). Then only will he be able to enter into deep meditation and samadhi.
To still the waves of the mind and hold it steady in samadhi needs constant and protracted practice of meditation. There may be breaks in the meditation in the beginning, but practice can make you perfect. Later on you can remain absorbed in meditation. You can merge yourself in samadhi with a mind steady like a flame protected from the wind. Before getting sanguine success in meditation, get victory over the asana pose first. Sit upon your seat with the steadiness of a rock for two or three hours. If the body is steady the mind also will be steady.
Do not mistake a little concentration or one-pointedness of mind for samadhi. Simply because you have risen a little above body-consciousness on account of a little concentration, do not think that you have attained samadhi.
Advanced aspirants should stop all sorts of work and study of religious books even, if they want to enter into samadhi quickly. They should observe mauna and remain in a solitary place on the banks of Ganges, Jumuna, Narmada or any river. They should live on milk alone or milk and fruits. They should plunge themselves in sadhana in right earnest, reducing sleep to two or three hours. They should start the practice in the beginning of winter.
To attain samadhi one should observe strict celibacy and dietetic restrictions and must have purity of heart. If these are not attained there is no possibility of attaining that state. These preliminary qualifications should be grasped well, then only must one try to enter the portals of samadhi. So, no-one can enter into samadhi until he is himself a greatly purified soul. The mind should be perfectly purified, then only the mechanism or vessel will be fit enough to receive the descent of divine light. It should be sufficiently strong to bear the pressure or sudden expansion of consciousness or cosmic vision which is above mind and which covers the whole existence in one sweep of this new exalted, magnanimous experience.
Samadhi is a positive, real state. It is all knowledge. During meditation, when the mind passes into a calm state of samata, when you feel a peculiar concentration and bliss (ananda), think you are entering into samadhi state. Do not disturb this state; try your best to keep it for a long time. Mark this state very carefully. Just as a very skilful archer in shooting at the bird is aware of the way in which he takes his steps, holds the bow, the bow string and the arrow at the time when he pierces the bird — 'thus standing in this position, holding thus the bow, thus the bow string and thus the arrow, I pierced the bird' — and ever afterwards would not fail to fulfil these conditions that he might pierce the bird, even so the aspirant should note the suitable conditions, thus: 'eating this kind of food, following such a person, in such a dwelling, in this mode, at this time, I attained to this meditation and samadhi'.
As a clever cook in serving his master notes the kind of food that his master relishes and henceforward serves it and gets gain, so the aspirant, too, notes the conditions such as the nourishment, etc. at the moment of attaining meditation and samadhi, and in fulfilling them gets ecstasy again and again.
The Mind in Samadhi
The mind becomes Brahman when it is purified and brought into samadhi state. The state in which the mind remains free from sensations is liberation. Therefore the state of the mind remaining unconnected with the senses or with the mind's own functions or actions — hopes, fears, etc. — is liberation. Mind, without mingling with Brahman, cannot be disconnected from sensations. Just as salt mingled with water becomes water, so mind mingled with Brahman ultimately becomes Brahman itself. When the mind becomes Brahman this world (which is the creation of the mind) also melts away in Brahman and becomes Brahman itself. Therefore 'All this is Brahman' will be direct experience only to he who has practised this.
In samadhi the purified mind withdraws from its natural or habitual occupation and gets itself fixed upon the Atman, which is not touched by the mind. It withdraws itself from the external objects, looks within and concentrates on the Innermost Self. It resolves itself in the Atman, its source, and becomes the Atman itself. It takes the form of the Atman, just as camphor becomes the fire itself. Knowledge of Brahman or Atman is real experience and not mere knowing. "To know Brahman is to become Brahman" is the emphatic declaration of the Upanishads.
Deep Sleep and Samadhi
Samadhi is deep sleep with the full knowledge of the Self. You get this sleepless sleep when you have burnt the five sense organs in the fire of wisdom, when you have extricated yourself from the clutches of ignorance and controlled all desires.
Study the condition of deep sleep. There is neither the play of the mind nor the play of the senses. There are no objects, there is neither attraction nor repulsion. Wherefrom do you derive the bliss in sleep? The experience in sleep is universal — there is no difference of opinion here. Everyone says: "I slept soundly. I knew nothing. I was very happy in sleep." During deep sleep you rest in the Atman and enjoy the bliss of Atman which is independent of objects. The difference between deep sleep and samadhi is that in deep sleep there is the veil of ignorance, whereas in samadhi this veil is removed and destroyed by the fire of knowledge.
Some aspirants mistake 'deep sleep' and the state of tandra or 'half sleep' for nirvikalpa samadhi. This is a terrible mistake. If you experience samadhi of any kind you will have super-sensual knowledge. If you do not possess any intuitional knowledge, be sure that you are far from samadhi. You can experience samadhi only when you are established in yama, niyama or good conduct and when you have a very pure heart. How can the Lord be enthroned in an impure heart?
If you can consciously induce a state like deep sleep, it is no longer deep sleep, but samadhi; it is sleepless sleep wherein the senses and the mind entirely cease their function. The aspirant enjoys the perfect joy of freedom, of vast, infinite, supracosmic experiences and the supreme silence of the Imperishable. This sleepless sleep is the superconscious state (maha nidra). It is perfect awareness wherein the individual soul has merged itself into the Supreme Soul. There is no waking from this sleep.
There are several different degrees of samadhi, from the gross or savitarka samadhi to the highest or nirvikalpa samadhi. In the lower form of samadhi the yogi attains cosmic consciousness, which progresses to absolute consciousness in nirvikalpa samadhi. In the state of absolute consciousness the seer, the sight, the things seen; or the knower, knowable and knowledge; or the subject and the object, become one. In cosmic consciousness there is yet the seer and the seen.
In cosmic consciousness the lower mind is withdrawn from the external objective world, the senses are abstracted in the mind and the individual mind becomes one with the cosmic mind or Hiranyagarbha, the Over-soul or the Soul of the universe. The function of the intellect, the objective mind and the senses are suspended. The yogi becomes a living soul and sees into the life of things through his new divine eye of intuition or wisdom.
The state of cosmic consciousness is grand and sublime. It is beyond description. The mind and speech return back from it baffled as if they are not able to grasp and describe it. Language and words are imperfect. It induces awe, supreme joy and highest unalloyed felicity free from pain, sorrow and fear. This is divine experience.
Sri Sankara, Dattatreya, Varna Deva, Jadabharata, Mansoor, Shams Tabriez, Madalasa, Yajnavalkya, Rama Das, Tulsi Das, Kabir, Hafiz, Tukaram, Mira, Gouranga, Madhavacharya, Ramanujacharya, Lord Jesus, Lord Buddha, Lord Mohammed and Lord Zoroaster all had experience of cosmic consciousness. Arjuna, Sanjaya and Devaki also had the experience of cosmic consciousness. Devaki saw the whole universe within the mouth of the baby Krishna.
The yogi who has experience of cosmic consciousness acquires all divine powers. He attains many kinds of psychic powers which are described in the Srimad Bhagavatam and the Raja Yoga Sutras of Patanjali Maharishi.
This new experience bestows enlightenment, which places the experiencer on a new plane of existence. There is an indescribable feeling of elation and indescribable joy and bliss. The yogi experiences a sense of universality, a consciousness of eternal life. It is not a mere conviction. He actually feels it. The individuality has gone. The little 'I' has melted. The differentiating mind that splits up, has vanished. All barriers, all sense of duality, differences and separateness have disappeared. The idea of caste, creed and colour have gone. There is no idea of time and space, there is only eternity. He has the feeling of one who has obtained all that he desires. He feels, 'There is nothing more to be known by me.' He feels perfect awareness of a super-conscious plane of knowledge and intuition. He knows the whole secret of creation, he is a knower of all the details of creation. He is omniscient.
Absolute fearlessness, desirelessness, thoughtlessness, I-lessness, mine-lessness, anger-lessness, an aura in the face and freedom from grief are some of the signs that indicate that a man has reached the state of super-consciousness. He is also always in a state of perfect bliss. You can never see anger, depression, cheerlessness or sorrow in his face. You will find elevation, joy and peace in his presence.
Cosmic consciousness is perfect awareness of the oneness of life. The yogi feels that the universe is filled with one life. He actually feels that there is no such thing as blind force or dead matter, and that all is alive, vibrating and intelligent. This is the experience of the scientist Bose also. He has demonstrated it through laboratory experiments.
He who has cosmic consciousness feels that the universe is all 'mine'. He is one with the supreme Lord, he is one with the universal knowledge and life. He experiences bliss and joy beyond understanding and description. In the moment of illumination or great spiritual exaltation he has the actual divine universal vision. He is conscious of being in the presence of God. He sees the light of God's countenance. He is lifted above the ordinary plane of consciousness and reaches a higher state of consciousness. He has a cosmic or universal understanding.
He does not worry about death or future, about what may come after the cessation of the life of the present body. He is one with eternity, infinity and immortality.
During illumination the flood-gate of joy breaks. The yogi is inundated with waves of indescribable ecstasy. Bliss, immortality, eternity, truth and divine love become the core of his being, the essence of his life, the only possible reality. He realises that the deep ever-lasting fountain of joy exists in every heart, that the immortal life underlies all beings, that this eternal, all-embracing, all-inclusive love envelops, supports and guides every particle, every atom of creation. Sin, sorrow and death are now but words for him, words without meaning. He feels that the elixir of life, the nectar of immortality, is flowing in his veins.
He feels no need for food or sleep. He is absolutely desireless. There is a great change in his appearance and manner. His face shines with a radiant light. His eyes are lustrous pools of joy and bliss. He feels that the entire world is bathed in a sea of satisfying love or immortal bliss which is the very essence of life.
The whole world is home to him. He could never feel strange or alien in any place. The mountains, the distant lands which he has never seen would be as much his own as the home of his boyhood. He feels that the whole world is his body. He feels that all hands, all feet, are his.
Fatigue is unknown to him. His world is like child's play, happy and care-free. He beholds God only, everywhere. Chairs, tables and trees have a cosmic significance for him. His breath will stop completely sometimes, and time and space vanish for him. He experiences absolute peace and bliss beyond understanding and description. He actually feels that all is himself only; that snakes, scorpions and tigers are as much part of himself as his own eyes, nose, hands and feet.
He is one with the ether, flower, sun, ocean and sky. He feels the elixir of life, the nectar of immortality flowing in his veins. He feels that the entire universe is bathed in a sea of satisfying love. He has knowledge of Brahman and sees the real universe, which is the essence or background of the universe of matter, energy and mind. He is in a state of bliss and ecstasy beyond understanding and description.
Turiya — The Fourth State
The transcendental experience is also called by the name turiya or the fourth state. The first three states are 'waking', 'dreaming' and 'dreamless sleep', and the fourth is 'turiya'. The first three states are common to all. The fourth is latent in every human being.
When you are established in the fourth state, when you experience the transcendental state of Brahmic consciousness, the truth — which had been before but an intellectual abstraction — becomes a living reality definitely experienced by you.
Various names such as samyag darshan, sahaja avastha, nirvana, turiya-atita, aparoksha-anubhava, Brahma-sakshatkara, nirvikalpa samadhi and asamprajnata samadhi are given to this transcendental state, but all of them unmistakably point to the same goal. Real spiritual life begins after one enters into this state of super-consciousness.
You will realise at all times, and under all circumstances, that you are identical with the invisible existence, knowledge and bliss; that you pervade all persons and objects; and that you are beyond all limitations. If you have the knowledge of the Self or Brahman at all times without any break, then you are established in the Self. This is a state to be experienced within, but cannot be expressed in words. This is the final state of peace, the goal of life. This experience will give you freedom from all forms of bondage.
Friday, June 26, 2015
Song of Vibhuti Yoga
Bhajo Radhe Krishna,
Bhajo Radhe Shyama
Soham Soham, Sivoham Soham.
Om Om Om Om Om,
Om Om Om Om Om.
I am neither mind nor body, immortal Self I am,
I am witness of three states, I am knowledge absolute.
I am fragrance in jessamine, beauty in flowers,
I am coolness in the ice, flavour in coffee.
(Bhajo Radhe Krishna...)
I am greenness in the leaf, hue in the rainbow,
I am taste buds in the tongue, essence in orange.
I am mind of all minds, prana of all pranas,
I am soul of souls, Self of all selves.
(Bhajo Radhe Krishna...)
I am Atman in all beings, apple of all eyes,
I am sun of all suns, light of all lights.
I am Pranava of all vedas, Brahman of Upanishads,
I am silence in forests, thunder in all clouds.
(Bhajo Radhe Krishna...)
I am velocity in electrons, motion in science,
I am effulgence in the sun, wave in the radio.
I am support of this world, soul of this body,
I am ear of all ears, eye of all eyes.
(Bhajo Radhe Krishna...)
I am time, space, dik and the controller,
I am God of gods, guru and the director.
I am melody in music, in rag and raginins,
I am sound in ether, shakti in virya.
(Bhajo Radhe Krishna...)
I am power in electricity, intelligence in mind,
I am brilliance in fire, penance in ascetics.
I am 'reason' in philosopher, 'will' in jnanis,
I am prem in bhaktas, samadhi in yogis.
(Bhajo Radhe Krishna...)
I am That I am, I am That I am,
I am That I am, I am That I am.
Thursday, June 25, 2015
Song of Govinda
God is truth.....................................................Govinda
God is bliss.....................................................Govinda
God is peace..................................................Govinda
God is knowledge...........................................Govinda
God is love.....................................................Govinda
God is light.....................................................Govinda
Control the mind.............................................Govinda
Control the senses..........................................Govinda
Realise the Self...............................................Govinda
This is the teaching.........................................Govinda
Of all the scriptures.........................................Govinda
Goal of life.......................................................Govinda
Speak the truth................................................Govinda
Serve, love, give..............................................Govinda
Be good, do good............................................Govinda
Get up at 4 a.m...............................................Govinda
Enquire 'Who am I?'........................................Govinda
There is no pleasure.......................................Govinda
In the sensual objects.....................................Govinda
Do not smoke.................................................Govinda
Do not drink....................................................Govinda
Do not take bribes..........................................Govinda
This is bad......................................................Govinda
Time is precious.............................................Govinda
Do not waste a second...................................Govinda
In japa, kirtan..................................................Govinda
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Song of Immortality
Ram Ram Ram Ram, Ram Ram Ram Ram,
Jaya Jaya Sita Ram
Ram Ram Ram Ram,Ram Ram Ram Ram,
Jaya Jaya Radheshyam.
Turn the gaze, draw the indriyas,
Still the mind, sharpen the intellect;
Chant Om with feeling, meditate on Atma,
Chant Ram with feeling, meditate on Sitaram,
Chant Shyam with feeling, meditate on Radheshyam.
O children of light, will you drink not,
Won't you drink not, the nectar of immortality?
All karmas (are) burnt now,
You have become a jivanmukta,
That blessed state turiyatita
No words can describe,
O children of light, will you drink not,
Won't you drink not, the nectar of immortality?
The grass is green, the rose is red,
And the sky is blue,
But the Atman is colourless,
Formless and gunaless too,
O children of light, will you drink not,
Won't you drink not, the nectar of immortality?
Life is short, time is fleeting,
The world is full of miseries,
Cut the knot of avidya,
And drink the sweet nirvanic bliss,
O children of light, will you drink not,
Won't you drink not, the nectar of immortality?
Feel the divine presence everywhere
See the divine glory all round,
Then dive deep into the divine source,
Realise the infinite bliss,
O children of light, will you drink not,
Won't you drink not, the nectar of immortality?
Do asana, kumbak, mudra,
Shake the kundalini;
Then take it to sahasrar
Through chakras in the susumna,
O children of light, will you drink not,
Won't you drink not, the nectar of immortality?
Tuesday, June 23, 2015
The Divine Secret
True wisdom is love. The way is only one - love divine - that is all. Love divine is a great power; it is the basis of all religious life. Divine love has no sex. It sees God in all and all in God. Where love is, there God is. From love the world is born, by love it is sustained and into love it enters. He who loves not, knows not God, because God is love.
Open the floodgates of your heart for the inpouring of love divine. The path is through love - every moment of separation is a pang of death to the lovers and the devotees. Day and night the flame of love burns in the hearts of the devotees. Solace comes to the devotee in the flow of tears. The creeper of love is nourished by the eyes.
Love is not a passing sentiment or a feeble emotion - it is strong, deep, enduring. There is real love only when there is true inward identification with the life of another entity. Pure love divine communes with the beloved, with unity, with the one, the all-pervading essence of bliss.
The most important aspect of spiritual life is bhakti (devotion), and the secret of bhakti is love, a love which embraces all. Company of saints, kirtan (chanting) of the Lord's names, study of the Bhagavatam and service of the saints will create love for the Lord.
- - -
Love of the body or skin is passion. Love of God is prema (or devotion). It is pure love, love for love's sake. To love someone for attaining a selfish gain, is selfish love. It binds you to this earth. To love all beings, as manifestations of the Lord himself is pure love and leads to liberation. Pure love redeems and purifies the heart and transmutes you into divinity. God is an embodiment of love - an ocean of love. If you wish to attain God-realization, you must also become an embodiment of love. Love inspires, illumines and leads the way. Love is giving and not taking. Love cements the broken heart. It is the key to open the door to moksha.
Love inspires love. It is divine elixir; it bestows immortality, supreme peace and everlasting joy. Love is the golden link which binds heart to heart, mind to mind and soul to soul. Love never reasons but ever profusely gives. It is not affected by offence or insult. It looks only with the heart.
Monday, June 22, 2015
The only sara-vastu (thing of value) in this world is prema (or divine love). It is eternal, infinite and undecaying. Physical love is moha (passion or infatuation). Universal love is divine love. Cosmic love (vishva prema) and universal love are synonymous terms. God is love. Love is God. Selfishness, greed, egoism, vanity, pride and hatred contract the heart and stand in the way of developing universal love.
Develop universal love gradually through selfless service, satsanga (association with holy ones), prayer, recitation of guru mantra (mantra or a holy word given by a guru), etc. Thus all barriers are broken and now the heart will expand infinitely.
It is very easy to talk of universal love. But when you want to put it into actual practice it becomes extremely difficult. Petty mindedness of all sorts comes in the way. Old, wrong samskaras (impressions) which you have created by your wrong mode of life in the past, act as stumbling blocks. Through iron determination, strong will power, patience, perseverance and vicar (right enquiry), you can conquer all obstacles quite easily. The grace of the Lord will descend on you if you are sincere, my dear friends.
Feel that the whole world is your body, your own home. Melt or destroy all barriers that separate man from man. Any idea of superiority is ignorance or delusion. Develop all-embracing love. Unite with all. Separation is death. Unity is eternal life. Feel that the body is a moving temple of God. Wherever you are, whether at home, at the office, the railway station or the market, feel that you are in this temple.
Consecrate every act as an offering unto the Lord. Transmute every work into yoga by offering its fruits to God. Have akarta sakshi bhava (feeling: "I am a non-doer, witness") if you are a student of vedanta. Have nimittabhava (feeling: "I am an instrument") if you are a student of bhakti. Feel that all beings are images of God, that this world is indwelt by the Lord. Feel that one power, or God, works through all hands, sees through all eyes, hears through all ears. You will become a changed being. You will enjoy peace and bliss.
May Lord Hari take you all to His bosom and bathe you with the waters of sweet love. May your heart be filled with cosmic love.
Sunday, June 21, 2015
Seek God Within
Seek God within you, in your heart. Seek him not elsewhere. Seek him with faith. Seek not God for favours. Such favours will not bring you near to God. Cultivate nishkamya bhakti (motiveless devotion). Pine for his grace and mercy.
Quicken and enliven your faith in God. Let the flame of faith grow brighter and brighter daily. Feel His presence everywhere. Obtain His grace through faith, devotion and total self-surrender.
Cling to the feet of the Lord. Lead the life divine. Roll the beads and mentally repeat his name. Sing his praises and remember Him at all times. Fix your mind on the lotus feet of the Lord at all times. See the Lord in all objects. Sing the Lord's names.
Meditate on His form first then meditate on His all-pervading essence. Withdraw the senses from their objects and gaze within. Concentrate on the heart - search for Him there.
Practise ahimsa, satyam and brahmacharya (non-violence, truth and purity). Say from the bottom of your heart, "I am thine. Thy will be done, O Lord." Stick to dharma (right conduct). Control the mind and the senses. Kill egoism, lust, greed, hatred, etc.
Serve the saints. Serve your guru - guru and God are one. Chant the name and praises of the Lord. Meditate on His divine attributes. Constantly remember the Lord and His presence. Serve and worship the Lord.
Cling to the name of the Lord. Practise the religion of sacrifice. Dedicate yourself to God. Walk in humility and love. This is the way to God-realisation.
Here are some auxiliaries to bhakti. Study the lives of saints, again and again. You will get new inspiration and you will be elevated, renovated and transformed.
Japa (repetition of God's name), kirtan (chanting), prayer, service of saints, meditation, smarana (remembering God), are aids to God-realisation. Shun evil company. Live in the company of saints. Serve the sick and the poor. Lead a simple life.
Cultivate divine virtues such as humility, tolerance, mercy, kindness, courage, selflessness, cosmic love, truthfulness, purity and celibacy.
Saturday, June 20, 2015
Supreme Love of God
This attitude is called para puja (highest worship).
Life is complex nowadays. The struggle is very keen.
Here is an easy way of worshipping the Lord...
Consider your house as the temple of the Lord,
Your wife and children and others as the holy company of the bhaktas (devotees).
Consider every word you speak as the japa (repetition) of the Lord's name and as praise of him.
Consider every action as service of the Lord;
And your lying in bed as prostrations before the Lord,
And your daily walk and moving about as perambulations of the Lord.
Consider the lights you burn in the evening as the waving of lights to the Lord.
Consider sleep as samadhi (super-conscious state).
Give food and drink as offering to the Lord, then take it as his prasad (gift).
This is an easy way to worship the Lord.
"How shall I wash thy feet with holy water, O Lord, when the very Ganges flows from thy feet?
How shall I give thee a seat, O Lord?
Thou art all pervading!
How shall I wave lights for thee, O Lord?
The sun and the moon are thy eyes:
Shall I offer flowers to thee?
Thou art the very essence of the flowers."
This attitude is called para puja (highest worship).
Feel the presence of the Lord everywhere.
He dwells in the chambers of your heart too.
He glitters in your eyes.
He is the breath in your nostrils.
He is nearer to you than your jugular vein.
Behold Him in every face.
You will attain happiness here and hereafter if you worship God in this way. Life is short and time is fleeting.
Start doing this right now.
- - -
Why should you roam hither and thither to find God, the Supreme Being? Why should you go in vain to the forests? Why? Even as in the flower, fragrance resides, even as in the fire, heat dwells - even so doth the Lord abide. Seek Him within, my friend. Seek Him earnestly too.
The section ‘Lights in Meditation’ now continues.
Divine light comes not through open doors, but only through narrow slits. The aspirant sees the ray as a sunbeam passing through a chink into a dark room. It is like a flash of lightning. This sudden illumination chokes all sounds of words. The aspirant is spell-bound in ecstasy and awe. He trembles with love and awe, just as Arjuna did when he saw the universal form of Lord Krishna. So bright and glorious is the light environing the Divine, that the initiate is dazzled and bewildered.
During deep meditation you may behold a huge pillar of light. You will see infinite light and you will merge yourself in it. You will be struck with awe and wonder.
Various persons get various spiritual experiences. There cannot be a common experience for all. It depends upon the temperament, mode of sadhana, place of concentration and various other factors. Some hear melodious sounds in the ears, some see lights, some get spiritual bliss and some get both lights and bliss.
To behold various kinds of colours and lights during meditation is not the goal. You will have to merge the mind in That which is the source for all these lights and colours.
Anahata sounds or melodies are the mystic sounds heard by the yogi at the beginning of his cycle of meditation. The anahata sound is due to the vibration of prana in the heart. This is a sign of purification of the nadis or astral currents due to pranayama. The sounds can also be heard after the uttering of mantra 'hamsah soham' a hundred thousand times. The sounds are heard through the right ear, with or without closing the ears, but they are more distinct when heard through closed ears. The ears can be closed by introducing the two thumbs into the ears through the process of yoni mudra. Sit on padma or siddhasana, close the ears with the thumbs and hear the sounds very attentively. Occasionally you can hear the sounds through the left ear also. Practise to hear from the right ear only. Why do you hear through the right ear only or hear distinctly through the right ear? Because of the solar nadi, pingala, on the right side of the nose.
Just as a hunter catches deer by spreading a snare, so also the yoga student catches the mind by the snare of anahata sound heard in his right ear. The sweet melodious sounds that are heard in the ear first attract the mind. Then they bind it and eventually annihilate the mind. The mind is absorbed or dissolved in the nada (sounds). Binding the mind means rendering the mind quite steady. To kill the mind is to make the mind absorbed in the sound. Then it cannot run toward the objects.
The sound that is heard is of ten kinds. The first is like the sound of the word 'chini'; the second is like 'chini-chini'; the third is the sound of a bell; the fourth is that of a conch; the fifth is that of a lute; the sixth is the sound of cymbals; the seventh is that of the flute; the eighth is that of the drum; the ninth is that of a double drum, and the tenth is like that of thunder.
The mind can be fixed on any of these sounds. This also will lead to samadhi. Sometimes you will hear the melodious sound of OM during meditation and you will see the form of your guru.
A student in the path of vedanta ignores these sounds and lights. He meditates on the significance of the great declarations of the Upanishads by negating all forms. "The sun does not shine there, nor do the moon and the stars, nor shines this lightning and much less this fire. When He shines, everything shines after Him; by His light all these shine.'' He meditates also like this: ''The air does not blow there. The fire does not burn there. There is neither sound nor touch, neither smell nor colour, neither mind norprana in that homogeneous essence. I am the blissful Siva, I am the blissful Siva."
Experience of Sadhaks
Here are some actual experiences of sadhaks:
I had a peculiar sensation near my solar plexus in meditation. I noticed a whirling sensation like a flywheel rotating around. Then I came across some peculiar sights. I saw with the physical eyes a sort of white or blue hue of light all around people's heads and also on the surface of buildings. When I gazed at the open grand expanse of sky in the day time, I noticed a white light moving hither and thither. When I work intently in my office, white shining lights flash across my eyes. Sometimes little sparks of light are noticed on my books. This gives me a peculiar joy and I begin to chant the name of the Lord: 'Sri Rama Jaya Rama Jaya Jaya Rama'. Nowadays when I am cycling to my office I see a round light-like ball which is visible till I reach my destination. The same thing appears at times when I gaze at the beautiful sky......'S.'
I meditated for five hours daily for a month in Gangotri. One day I had a great deal of dejection for two hours. I could not find any peace. I found it difficult to bear the mood of dejection. I then sat on the bank of the Ganges and began to meditate upon Mahatma Gandhiji. It gave me some solace. After a few days I was meditating on Sri Ramachandra for one and a half hours. This meditation with form automatically turned into a formless type. I felt perfect peace for ten minutes. My mind was fully engrossed in meditation on OM. This continued for half an hour. One day I had a different kind of experience. I opened my eyes after meditation. I found everything as Brahman without the help of reasoning. I had this mood the whole day. A brahmachari spoke to me for one hour on that day. I was hearing but my mind did not attend to his speech. It remained in the same mood. I could not recollect even a word of his speech.
On another occasion I meditated for half an hour. I had a very ecstatic mood. But owing to some distraction from sounds outside, this ecstatic mood dropped down. Again I began to meditate. I saw a beautiful light at the bottom of my heart. As soon as that light disappeared, I began to weep unconsciously. Somebody came and called me by my name. I stopped weeping a little but looking at his face wept again and again for twenty-five minutes......'V'.
I did pranayama for a month and then began to hear some sweet melodious sounds of different sorts, viz., flute, violin, bell-sound, double drum, sounds from a cluster of bells, a conch sound, a drum sound, and the sound of thunder; sometimes from right ear only, while at other times from both the ears......'N'.
During concentration I smell extraordinary sweet fragrances and good smells......'R'.
I used to see during meditation in the space between the eye-brows a blazing sun, a dazzling light and brilliant stars. The vision was not steady at all......'G'.
Sometimes I see some sages in the space between the eyebrows during the course of concentration. I used to see Lord Krishna, with the flute in his hands......'S'.
I used to see, at times, coloured lights, red, green, blue and white in the space between the eye-brows during my meditation. Sometimes I see a blue expansive sky. I, myself, appeared as a dot in that blue sky......'V.
During meditation I occasionally see several demi-gods and goddesses with lustrous resplendent bodies with beautiful ornaments......'R'.
Sometimes during meditation I see a big void only......'T'.
During concentration I see my own face in the centre of a big light. Sometimes, I used to see the faces of my friends. I could clearly recognise them......'R'.
I feel a current of electricity passing from the muladhara to the back of the neck when I sit for meditation. Even at ordinary times, I feel this......'K'.
During meditation some astral entities with ghastly hideous faces and long teeth, black in colour, threaten me. But they did not do any harm......'A'.
When I sit for meditation I often get jerks of the legs and hands. Sometimes, my body jumps from one place to another......'M'.
I sometimes see palatial buildings, rivers, mountains and gardens during my meditation......'S'.
I meditate with open eyes. One night I saw in front of me, a brilliant light. In the centre of the light I saw Lord Krishna with flute in hand. My hair stood on end. I became speechless. I was struck with awe and wonder......'S'.
One day I had deep meditation. I separated myself actually from the physical body. I actually saw it as a slough thrown off. I was floating in the air. I had a peculiar sensation—a mixture of extreme joy and extreme fear. I stayed in the air for a couple of minutes only. Owing to great fear I suddenly entered back, gliding with a peculiar sensation into the physical body. The experience was thrilling......'S'.
In the Hours of Meditation
Brahman, Self, Purusha, Chaitanya, Consciousness, God, Atman, Immortality, Freedom, Perfection, Peace, Bliss and Bhuma (or the Unconditioned) are synonymous terms. If you attain Self-realisation you will be freed from the round of births and deaths and its concomitant evils. The goal of life is the attainment of final beatitude or liberation (moksha). Liberation can be attained by constant meditation with a heart that is rendered pure and steady by selfless service, japa, etc.
Reality or Brahman can be realised by man. Many have attained Self-realisation. Many have enjoyed the state of nirvikalpa samadhi. Sankara, Dattatreya, Mansoor, Shams Tabriez, Jesus and Buddha were all realised souls who had direct perception of the Truth or cosmic vision. One who has known it cannot communicate it to others for want of means. Even the knowledge acquired by the five senses which are common to all, cannot be communicated to others. You cannot tell the taste of sugar candy to a man who has never tasted it; you cannot communicate the idea of colour to one born blind. All that the teacher can do is to tell his disciple the method of knowing the Truth, or the path that leads to the unfoldment of intuitional faculties.
In contemplation you are in spiritual contact with the unchanging light. You are cleansed of all the impurities. This light cleanses the soul which touches it. The light brings enhanced energy and great comfort. The sun-glass is exposed to the light of the sun and the straws underneath catch fire. So also within yourself, if you have an open heart devotedly lifted up to God, the light of His purity and love, illumining this open soul, will consume all your shortcomings in its fire.
"By samyama on the three modifications of the mind comes the knowledge of the past and future." (III-16)
"By samyama on the signs (of others) comes the knowledge of their minds." (III-19)
"By giving up even these (siddhis) comes the destruction of the seed of bondage, which brings kaivalya (or Self-realisation)." (III-51)
Siddhis are psychic powers. A yogi claims that he can attain these extraordinary powers and knowledge by subduing the passions and appetites and by practising yama, niyama and samyama (the practice of concentration, meditation and samadhi at one time).
Yogis of olden times — like Sri Jnana Dev, Bhartrihari and Patanjali Maharshi — used to send and receive messages to and from distant persons through mind-telepathy and thought-transference. Telepathy was the first wireless telegraph and telephone service in the world. Even now there are yogis who are versed in telepathy. Thought travels with tremendous velocity through space. Thought is as much solid matter as a piece of stone. It can hit a man against whom it is directed.
There is no such thing as a miracle. Ordinary man is quite ignorant of higher spiritual things, he is sunk in oblivion and shut up from higher transcendental knowledge, so he calls some extraordinary occurrence or event a miracle. For a yogi who understands things in the light of yoga, a miracle is nothing. Just as a man of a village is astonished when he sees an aeroplane or cinema for the first time, so also a man of the world is stunned when he witnesses an extraordinary spectacle for the first time.
Yoga aims at controlling the mind. Miraculous siddhis or powers can be attained by the methodical exercise of yoga practice. The science of yoga promises as the fruit of such practice the attainment of the faculty of making oneself invisible, infinitely large or infinitely light, of assuming other bodies, of changing the course of nature and the acquisition of all other miraculous powers.
A yogi becomes the master of all forces in nature and can utilise them at his will. He has perfect control over the elements. The word 'bhagavan' denotes one who possesses the six superhuman powers or six attributes, viz., who can assume the size of an atom, who is the inexhaustible store-house of righteousness (dharma), glory (yasa), prosperity (sri), dispassion (vairagya) and knowledge (jnana).
Understand and realise the powers of the mind. Unfold the hidden powers or occult faculties. Close the eyes. Concentrate. Explore the higher regions of the mind. You can see distant objects, hear distant voices, send messages to distant parts, heal persons who are at a distance and move about to a distant place in the twinkling of an eye. Believe in the powers of the mind. If you have interest, attention, will-power and faith you are bound to succeed.
The source of the mind is the Atman or the highest Self. This mind is born of the Atman through His maya or illusory power. Man's mind is just a fragment of the cosmic or universal mind. A raja yogi becomes one with the cosmic mind and knows the workings of all minds. The yogi gets omniscience through the cosmic mind and experiences cosmic consciousness.
There are scientific means to tap this universal mind. Purity, concentration, dispassion, right living, right thinking, right conduct, right action, devotion, moderation in eating and sleeping, purity in food, truthfulness, continence, non-injury and austerities have to be regularly practised for a protracted time. When you tap the universal mind you will get higher, super-sensual knowledge. You will experience cosmic consciousness. You will get knowledge of the past, present and future. You will acquire knowledge of the root elements and the mental plane. You can know what is going on in the minds of others. You will get divine powers.
Through his yoga inner eye the yogi directly beholds the innate tendencies of his disciples; he knows their weaknesses and defects and prescribes the right kind of sadhana for their quick eradication. A jnani can also do this. Whatever a yogi does through simultaneous dharana, dhyana and samadhi, can be done by a jnani through his power of pure will or desire.
In higher stages of spiritual life speech has very little to do with communication. By mere willing and thinking, telepathic waves can be transmitted to the mind.
Stories of Siddhas
A disciple of Samartha Ramdas transmitted his spiritual power to the daughter of a dancing woman who was very passionate towards him. The disciple gazed at her. Her passion vanished, she became pious and religious-minded. Transmission of power can be done by a yogi through gazing, touch and willing.
A yogi named Chang Dev came riding on a tiger, with a serpent for a whip, to Alandi near Poona where Yogi Jnanesvar was living. He wanted to impress Jnanesvar with his own powers and command over nature. Jnanesvar was ready to receive him. With his brothers and sister he climbed upon the wall which surrounded his house and commanded it to bear him out to meet his visitor, and the wall did as it was bidden.
Mansoor was a great and famous sufi saint. He lived in Multan (Punjab) some four hundred years ago. He was always repeating "Analhaq". This corresponds to 'Soham' or 'I am He' of the vedantins. People reported to the then emperor that Mansoor was an atheist and that he was always repeating "Analhaq". The emperor was quite enraged. He ordered that Mansoor be cut into pieces. Accordingly, he was cut into pieces. Even then the flesh was uttering "Analhaq, Analhaq". He felt no pain as he was a full-blown jnani and he had full identification with Brahman. He was above body-consciousness. He was bodiless in reality. When they put the pieces of flesh and bones in the fire the ashes uttered "Analhaq".
Shams Tabriez was another saint of Multan. He also lived some four hundred years ago. He was a Hindu sannyasin with the sannyasi name of Puri. Mohammedans gave him the name Shams Tabriez just to appropriate him to their side. He was also disliked by the then emperor because he was always repeating "Analhaq". One day, when he was very hungry, someone gave him a piece of raw flesh. He asked for some fire from some people to roast it. They all refused, because if they were to help him they would be punished by the emperor.
Shams Tabriez then kept the piece of flesh in his hand and showed it to the sun and said, "O sun, come down immediately and roast the piece of flesh for me. I am very hungry." At once the sun came down and roasted the piece of flesh. Shams Tabriez ate it with joy. The scorching rays of the sun began to burn the people of Multan and the emperor, trembling with fear, prostrated before Shams Tabriez and said: "Forgive me my Lord. Make the sun go back to its original place." The sun obeyed the orders of the jnani and went back to its original place. A jnani is God Himself. He can do anything through pure will or resolve. He is King of kings, though he has no treasury. What is a petty emperor before a sannyasin, the Emperor of emperors!
Shams Tabriez was later skinned alive by the order of the emperor, yet he only laughed throughout. Kabir's corpse turned into flowers, half of which were buried by the Hindus at Benares, the other half at Maghar. Sage Tiruvalluvar's body was converted into gold at the time of his death. The bodies of some saints in Southern India were converted into a mass of light at the time of their death. Saints can do anything they like.
It is true that Buddha died of purging, Sankaracharya died of piles, Ramakrishna died of cancer and Vivekananda died of diabetes. Even if there is a physical ailment the sage is not affected by it as he has no identification with the body. In his vision there is no body for him, so he never cares to attend to it.
Requirements for Attaining Siddhis
Many persons take to yoga practices with curiosity and the expectation of acquiring powers and awakening the kundalini. They leave off the practice after three months. This is not good. Application and tenacity, patience and perseverance are necessary for sanguine success and siddhis. Mere emotion will not do.
The success in yoga is quicker according to the amount of energy put in by the sadhak! You cannot expect to have siddhis by simply shutting and opening the nostrils for three or six months. He who is established in yama and niyama and who has mastery over a posture, can take to pranayama. He will undoubtedly have success.
Real Nature of Spiritual Experiences
Higher spiritual experiences have nothing to do with colours or sounds. There should be inner joy, peace and poise. There should be balance of mind in success and failure, pleasure and pain, honour and dishonour. The pairs of opposites should be overcome. Likes and dislikes should vanish. There should be Cosmic Love. The whole world should become the manifestation of the supreme Lord. There should be freedom from all kinds of fears and pains. This is the real nature of high spiritual experiences.
Psychic powers — siddhis and riddhis — have no proper place in spiritual life. You will have to shun them ruthlessly even if they manifest during the course of your spiritual practices. They roll under the feet of that yoga student who has controlled the senses and who practices concentration. They are hindrances to realisation. You will have to spurn them as worthless because your aim is the attainment of liberation (kaivalya moksha).
Patanjali Maharishi (author of the Yoga Sutras), clearly warns the students that they should not be carried away by temptations of powers. The gods themselves tempt the incautious yogi by offering him a position similar to theirs.
Uddalaka was tempted by the gods, but he refused their invitations. So remember, don't stop even with these psychic powers.
Exhibition of psychic powers is no criterion for measuring one's height of spirituality. Sometimes a yogi may exhibit a miracle to his student just to convince him of the existence of super-sensual things and to encourage him in the spiritual path. He who exhibits siddhis for selfish ends is a big worldly man. He will soon have his downfall. A yogi came to Calcutta and exhibited in the University Hall the feats of drinking pure nitric acid, swallowing nails and chewing glass-pieces. People were struck with wonder. He licked the nitric acid like honey. But he was a purely commercial man. He made a demonstration of these acts to anyone who could pay Rs. 30/-. Can there be an iota or grain of spirituality or real yoga where business transactions are made? I leave this for the readers to judge. The poor yogi died in Rangoon on account of some carelessness in his technique. There is nothing really extraordinary in these feats. There are some herbs to destroy the evil effects of acids and glass-pieces.
It is only the uncultured man who runs after powers. The possession of siddhis never brings one nearer to God. They have no spiritual value. Worldly people are enamoured of persons who exhibit these powers and run after them with curiosity. They are under the wrong impression that those who exhibit powers are real mahatmas or jivanmuktas. This is wrong. Patanjali Maharshi also says:
"The siddhis are regarded as perfections by the undisciplined mind only, but are serious obstacles to spiritual meditation." (III-38)
Naturally, various kinds of siddhis are acquired by the yogi who has controlled his senses and his prana and who practises concentration and deep meditation. Emancipation can only be achieved when you shun even omniscience and omnipotence as worthless. They are nothing when compared with the supreme imperishable wealth of liberation (moksha or kaivalya).
He who runs after siddhis will become the biggest householder and worldly-minded man. Self-realisation only is the goal.
If you use these powers for base and selfish purposes, for some material gain or other, you will face a downfall and be punished by nature. Action and reaction are equal and opposite. Every wrong action is bound to cause reaction. It will rebound upon you and bring your own destruction. Do not prostitute the psychic powers. I seriously warn you, beware. Power, sex, money and erudition act as powerful intoxicants. The possessor does not know exactly what he is doing. His intellect becomes turbid and his understanding gets clouded. You will not be tempted by these powers if you are established in the practice of yama or self-restraint. Whatever psychic powers you may get, treat them as poison, dung or straw. Don't deviate from your spiritual path and object of meditation.
Just as you treat a cow, so also demi-gods treat men and aspirants. They put serious obstacles in the path of the aspirants. They tempt them, particularly the advanced students. Respect them, but reject the offered powers or allurements ruthlessly. Then only can you march further on the path. If you yield to their temptations, if you become a slave of siddhis, you will have a hopeless downfall. O aspirants, beware.
One becomes fit for immortality only when he abandons the pleasures of this world and other worlds, including those of Indra and Brahman. Psychic powers tempt the yogi to run into the sensual grooves. The motives attributed to their achievement may be pure in the beginning, but the suppressed desires will all of a sudden sprout up and delude the aspirant. Incessant prayer and strong belief in God are the remedies for all ills. Gradually you should develop dispassion for worldly objects, including the body. Be cautious at all times.