Glories of Yog by Shri Paramhans Swami Adgadanandji - HTML preview
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CHAPTER 1 - HATH – CHAKRA – PENETRATION AND YOG?
(This is a discourse on Yog delivered by Maharaj Shree on 22-11-2000 in Nepal at Kathmandu)
You have placed two querries before me. The first question is whether Idol worship is desirable or not? Second question is What is real Yog? A lot of confusion exists regarding various forms of Yog like Hatha Yog, Raj Yog, Laya Yog and Kundlini Yog, Shatchakra Yog and Yog - Asanas? What is the truth? Where does it lie?
So far as the question of Idol worship is concerned, it is not out of place to mention here at the very outset that I have discussed this question in detail in the ‘Yatharth Geeta’, ‘Jeevanadarsh’, ‘Shanka Samadhan’ and ‘Unchuye Prashna’ etc. published from the ashram. Temples, Mosques, Gurudwaras, Churches, Tombs are nothing but the primary schools of spirituality. We can follow the foot-steps of our ancestors and get religious directions through them. They are useful up to a limit. Primary schools are important for learning alphabets but if someone wishes to stay life long in such schools, he would simply waste his time and learn nothing material. Similarly, if some one goes on visiting temples life - long, it should be taken as nothing but his sheer sentimentalism. Temples and Idols are our revered monuments, which enshrine the glorious memories of the spiritual investigations made by the ancestors. If valuable information regarding the Sadhna of the majestic personality who chose the place for it, are given there, if the modes and methods adopted by him for attaining God are trans-communicated there, if his divine messages are relayed there, only then the temples and idols are meaningful. Temples which distribute only Charnamrit (ambrosial offerings) are not perfect, they exploit the devotion of devotees.
The second question which is connected with Yog definitely needs discussion at large. Now a days a number of training centres in the name of Yog are being run in the country as well as abroad where the house-holders as well as saints are imparting the knowledge. All such institutes are prospering. Even small children have mastered Yog. Some young boys used to come to our Ashram. All of them learnt Yog and won gold medals. Actually they were all gymnasts. Geeta does not refer gymnastics and acrobatics as Yog. The Geeta speaks as follows–
Tam vidyad dukh sanyog viyogam yog sangyitam Sa nishchyayen yoktavyo yogo anirvinchetasa |6|23||
Yog is the attainment of inner bliss which is free from the worldly attraction and repulsion and which is known as the quintessence of all existence, God. Yog means ultimate union with supreme being. Only those who patiently and regularly practice it, attain it. The ripples of mind do exist in between us and God and they may be called the modifications of the mind. How to modulate them, How to restrain them? is the only problem of Sadhna. Sadhna (Spiritual Endeavour) is nothing but the modulation of mind. The sages of the past express the methods of worship in their own different words and styles under the impact of different time, place and characters.
The same informations regarding the investigations of God who is the only source of mundane as well as supra – mundane joys, are stored in the Vedas, which goes in the Upnishads by the name of Udgeeth Vidya, Madhu Vidya, Atma Vidya, Dahar Vidya, Bhuma Vidya, Mantha Vidya, Nyas Vidya. This has been called in the philosophy of Patanjali, Yog.
What is Yog? Maharishi Patanjali replies Ath Yoganushasanam- which means Yog is a discipline. If it is so who is to be disciplined? Family? or the country? or the neighbouring locality? Maharishi, the exponent explains No - Yogashchitvashati - A Modulation of the operations of mind is Yog. If some one after making frantic efforts succeeds in restraining the mind, what does he actually get? Tada Drashtuah Swaroopeawashtanam- His soul which stands as witness, gets established in its prestine form. The question arises - was it not established so earlier? According to the Maharishi – Vashtati Saroopyamitratra - the witnessing soul ordinarily assumes the Satvik, Rajas and Tamas, complicated or uncomplicated form in accordance with the modifications of mind. How to restrain the impulses, the ripples of the mind? The answer is Abhyasvairagyabhyam The efforts which are made to control the mind is known as practice or Abhyas. Renunciation of attachments with objects around is known as Vairagya. But if we have to make practice, we should know practice of what? Kalesh Karm Vipaka Shayerparakashtahpurush Vishesh Ishwarah – A God is that unique being who remains uninvolved and above sufferings actions, accumulation of actions and the experiences of their results. He is beyond Time, He is the Master of all masters. Such a Being may be addressed as OM. Tajjpastdarthbhavnam - chant this name of God, which is Pranav, meditate on the form of God. Only this much practice is to be done. By the impact of this practice the obstacles would disappear, anguish and afflictions would end for ever and the distance lying between the self and the realization of the self would be eliminated.
So far as yogic achievements are concerned one has to pass through the turmoil of the thought waves, or flickerings of the mind. How then the physical exercises and various Mudras and postures have become Yog? Nobody can go on practicing the Asanas all the time without losing a second. The Geeta does not speak of Yog as physical exercise. According to the Geeta – Yog is a continual, unbroken process. Maharishi Patanjali says – Sa Tu Dirghkal Narentarya Satkara Asevito Dashdbhumih & By long continuous and devoted practice, yog gets strongly grounded. No practice of asanas is to be done. What is to be done is the practice of the jap of OM and meditation on God, what is the fruit of Yog? Establishment in the prestine form of the all witnessing soul. Nothing except this is Yog. All those practices which ensue different results and have different attributes can never be Yog.
Now we try to find out how physical activities in Yog got introduced in place of mental activities? From where various Asanas entered into Yog? Mahatmas used to worship and practice Yog in dense forest at solitary places and lived on only fruits and roots of plants. Such places were generally the breeding grounds of a number of diseases. Lagat Ati Pahad Kar Pani. Vipin Vipati Nahi Jai Bakhani The climate of the hills affects adversely, the problems and difficulties of forest – life are beyond descriptions. The hilly water generally is not suitable for health. There are so many inconveniences in forest – life and words can not express them. Besides the problem of living in midst of snakes, scorpions, lions, bears, rhinoceros, elephants and different kinds of insects, there are big mosquitoes and their fatal stings on account of which the devotees fall sick of malaria, liver complaints, typhoid, stomach ache within four to six months. The fever stays for months. The mind of the devotees which was to be fixed on God, now starts contemplating on the ills of the body. The problem is how to remain healthy at such places? If somehow the health recovered, the devotees again within four to six months fall sick.
Men have very limited time in life and if it is wasted in fighting with the diseases how and when the practice and Sadhana would start and move?
Medical facilities in ancient days were not so at hand as they are today. In distant forests they were absolutely not available. For this reason the Mahatmas started sparing some time for those physical exercises which keep the body fit and ward off the diseases like constipation and its concommitant ills. Yog Karat Rog Barat Kathin Udhyo, Hum Na Karab! Gopis while complaining to Uddhava say that Yog is very tough, it gives birth to diseases. This is really very true because Bhajan depends on the ebb and flow of breath. The name of the Lord is chanted in four ways – first loudly (Vaikhari), thereafter with low sound (Madhyama) then mentally (Pashyanti) and at last through para or transcendental state.
Vaikhry is called that way of chanting the name in which the sound is loud and audible to others nearby. Madhyama means the sound which is not audible to others, only the devotee who chants the name, hears it and understands it. Pashyanti is the advance stage in which the mind’s eye is concentrated on the flow of breathing and the devotee watches closely when the breath is inhaled, how much time it stays inside and when it is exhaled. The mind is ordained to stand as witness to the jap of the name. In the matured state of Pashyanti which is called Vipashyana, the name gets activated concurrently with the observation of breathing. Effortlessly it all happens. Once the meditation starts, it goes on unbroken. When the power to witness the process of breathing is achieved, the devotee enters into para – state or transcendental state. At such a time the motion of the breath becomes very slow. If generally you breathe four times in a minute, in the para state you breathe only once. It is the breath which purifies the blood. If it becomes slow, the circulation of blood also becomes slow. When the circulation of blood in the veins, arteries and the muscles of the body is slow a number of diseases afflict the body. To redeem Sadhana from any break, the Mahapurushas discovered Neti, Dhauti, Asanas and Physical Acrobatics.
Neti is a process in which a thread of cotton is inserted into the hole of the nose and taken out of the throat. Dhauti is another cleansing process in which a thin cloth of five meter length and five centimeter width is gulped down with water and then it is taken out. While doing Vasti water is sucked up through rectum to clean like enema the bigger intestine. Nauli is an act in which smaller intestines are moved circular in a standing pose leaning and placing both hands on the knees. Tratak - is seeing an object without twinkling of the eye. Kapalbhati is taking and leaving fast breath like the bellows of an ironsmith. There are further divisions of all these like Karnadhauti– (cleaning of ear) Dantadhauti (cleaning of teeth) Shankha – Prakshalan (taking water with the mouth and discharging it from the rectum) etc. they were all physical devices for body fitness so that the Bhajan could go on unhampered. Tan Bhin Bhajan Ved Nahin Barana - They were not at all connected with the fundamentals of Sadhana. They are actually the prescriptions for keeping physical fitness so that Bhajan could be done with no obstructions. Later on they came to be known as Hatha Yog.
Actually there is no separate Sadhana like Hatha Yog. When I came under the benign shelter of Guru Maharaj ji, he started within a month or two transmitting inspirations and directions in my heart what to do and what not to do, how to concentrate on the movement of breath. He guided us, assured us, corrected us when the sadhana faltered, removed the hurdles when they stood in the way and informed also that the hurdle was removed. All these intimations, I received in my divine experiences. Guru Maharaj ji kindled the light of spiritual experiences, God now himself took the reins in His hands like a charioteer. Gurudeo systematically taught us the method of jap, meditation on the inhalation and exhalation of breath, name-form-Lila and Brahmavidya etc. But he never referred to Neti, Dhauti, Nauli, Vasti and Yogasanas.
Guru Maharaj always laid much emphasis on service and directed to do this or that thing, kept us engaged in service in order to make up the lack of Yogasanas. He used to say us to remain absorbed in the practice of Yog. To get the mind engaged in the contemplation of name – form – Lila or the abode of God. If you free the mind, it is bound to get stuck in Maya. Mind is such an apparatus which never remains quiet, it always remains busy in doing something. So contemplate continuously even while discharging services. The meditation must go on even when you are picking up straw. Do it steadfastly with full resolve. This is the real Hath. There is no act like Hath other than this. Basking in Panchagani or eighty four Dhuni (Fire), lying on water or on thorns, living in forests, standing erect on one foot or standing with hands up, hanging upside down from the branch of a tree and getting smoked from the embers of fire underlying, to become a nude or a speechless saint, accepting no food, or taking only water, only fruit, only milk or roots herbs etc are the Hatha practices. But the real Hatha is the strong firm faith in one God.
Saptrishis presented once a proposal to Parvati Ji for her marriage with the most majestic Lord Vishnu. They persuaded her by saying that Shiva did not have even proper dress, possessed no riches at all to keep her comfortably. Parvati Ji replied, “Hath Na Chuth Chuthe Varu Deha” She was ready to leave her physical body, but not her obduracy (Hath). Janam Koti Lagi Ragar Hamari. Baraun Shambhu Na Ta Rahun Kuwari - A For millions of birth, I would cling to the pledge that either I would marry Shambhu or remain virgin. Tajaon Na Narad Kar Updeshu. Aapu Kahehen Sat Bar Mahesu - would never renounce the instruction of Narad, not at the multiple persuasions of even Lord Shiva Himself – Guru Ke Vachan Pratiti Jehi, Sapaneho Sugam Na Sukh Sidhi Tehi Those who do not have faith in the words of Guru, they can not even dream of happiness or accomplishments. Such was the steadfastness of Mother Parvati, such was her vow. Lord Buddha also had taken such a vow which is referred to in the sloka of Lalit Bistar – Eahsaney Shushytu Mae Shariram Tavagasthi Masam Pralayam Cha Yatu, Aprapay Bodhi Bahukalap Dhuralbham, Nevasanat Kayamatashch - (Even though my body gets dired, bones drop down leaving the flesh, the deluge overtakes, I shall not get up from my seat without attaining the rare Bodhikaivalya (Self-realisation). There is no act like Hatha except the obduracy? steadfastness or firmness. Hatha means not to budge even an inch from your devotion to God not even at the gospels of the millions of preachers. In the sadhana of Yog, Hatha (firmness) is most needed. Our respected Maharaj ji used to say, “Ho! Hatha is the symbol of Hanuman. A devotee should be like Hanuman, he should be unyielding like Mother Parvati. This is Hatha, practices of Neti and Dhauti are not Hatha at all”. Later exponents managed to advance an equation by splitting the letters Ha and Tha which according to them represented Sun and Moon or Pingala and Ida nerves.
There are references of a number of Bundha Mudras (Bonded postures) and Pranayams for the regulation of body and mind besides the above Shatkarmas (six processes) in the books of Tantra. In the Moolbandh, the rectum is shrunk with the force of the breath. In the Uddiyan Bundh the stomach is joined with back of the body. The chin touches the Heart in Jalandhar Bundh. In Khechari Mudra the tongue is rolled back and is kept in touch with the palate, thereafter by Gharshan (rubbing) Chedan (piercing) Chalan (movement) and Dohan (milking) the tongue is lengthened. Shrinking the genitals or organs again and again is prescribed in Ashwani Mudra. Dropping the hips, repeatedly on the ground is called Shakti Chalini Mudra, fixing eyes on the tip of the nose is Shambhavi Mudra, sucking up water etc through the genitals is Vajroli Mudra. In Yoni Mudra ears are closed with both the Thumbs, both eyes are closed with index fingers, the holes of the nose with middle fingers, lips with ring and little fingers. The Pranayam with the three steps – Poorak (Filling), Kumbhak (storing) and Rechak (exhaling) is divided into eight kinds 1- Sagarbha with Pranav, 2- Without Pranav, it is Nigarbha, 3- Suryabhedi Paranayam, 4- Ujjayi Pranayam, 5- Sheetali, 6- Bhastrika, 7- Bhramari, 8- Moordha and Kewali are other forms of Pranayam. To fill the stomach with wind like a pitcher is called Taragi Mudra. These were used to give desired favourable results in different diseases. Some persons used these process along with the meditation but these methods of cure were tough and involved great dangers. Even experts lost their lives at slight mistakes or negligence. So Asanas were discovered. By observing the ways of eighty four lacs of creatures eighty four Asanas were chiefly developed and they are known as Siddhashana, Padmashana, Seershashana, Mayurashana, Sarvangasana etc. One starts perspiring after doing even some of these Asanas, blood circulation becomes normal, muscles feel the pressure and one feels healthy and cured. These Asanas or exercises are helpful in Yog but they are themselves not Yog. Some persons practice only Asanas, Neti, Dhauti etc. in the name of Yog. Such physical exercises are not Yog. Yog is beyond the concord and discord of the world. Yog is inner bliss, transcending time, it signifies the union with the state of Kaivalaya (Eternal emancipation). Physical activities are only the ways and devices to cure the disorders, they never represent the real perfect Yog. If you want to know what is real Yog, you should thoroughly go through thrice or four times ‘Yathartha Geeta’, an exhaustive commentary on Shrimadbhagawat Geeta.
Once at beginning stage of his Sadhana, Maharaj ji was on his wandering tour, he reached Prayag. Some Hatha yogis lived at the Prayag Dam. A young devotee saw him sitting in meditation since 2 O’clock at night, he asked him why was he doing it at odd hours when his bowels were full of stool? He said that it was not possible to meditate in such conditions. Before starting Dhyan, Neti, Dhauti and other processes were very important. How could he concentrate in meditation without performing the preliminary acts? Smilingly Maharajji replied, “All the filth lies in fact in mind, what’s the use of cleansing the intestines of the material body? The polluted impressions (Sanskaras) of various births are the real filth. Yog is that process by which the filth of the mind is cleansed. Only self realized sages can rouse the Sadhan in the heart of the devotees by which the accumulated filth of various births are removed and the devotee is directed towards his Ist (the adored deity). This is purely a mental contemplation and is not at all connected with physical body. The Geeta is the important scripture of Yog but strangely enough not even a single maxim or precept speaks of Neti, Dhauti or Vasti. The Ram Charitmanas also leads to the union with the Isht but here also there is no description of such processes and rituals. Maharishi Patanjali and Kabir also gave no place to them in their system. No doubt Neti, Dhauti, etc. which are physical treatments, can cure even the most obstinate maladies but you can not achieve God, the Summum Bonum of Yog. There is only one method in Yog and that is every where the same–
Vyavasayatmika Buddhir Ekeha Kurunandana Bahusakha Hyanantascha Buddhayo Vyavasayinam
“O! Arjun there is only one determining mind in this beneficial system. The mind of the ignorants is divided in numberless branches, so they develop countless methods, ways and processes”. The Geeta calls the prescribed rules as Yagya Chakra - Later on the exponents gave various names to it. On account of the emphasis on different aspects the same and single Yog got divided into different branches like Gyan Yog, Bhakti Yog, Karma Yog, Raj Yog, Hatha Yog, Mantra Yog, Laya Yog, Surati Shabd Yog, Kundlini Yog, Chakra Bhedan Yog and the like. The different branches have become so differing that often they appear to be contradictory. The Gyanyogis laid emphasis on the intellect, Karmayogis on service, Bhakt yogis on total surrender, Rajyogis on meditation, Hath Yogis on physical cleanliness and fitness, Tantra Yogis on Mantra, Laya Yogis on the merger of Sanskaras and the self with God-Consciousness. Kabir’s Surati Shabad Yog is the same. The Kundalini Yog of guru Gorakhnath also resembles much with this. Yog is the aggregate of all, it is the essence of all.
After the final departure of the Mahapurushas, several distortions of their teachings often happen, they masquerade as the genuine and original one and get popularity in its name. This is the reason that mystical interpretations, meaningless Mantras and occult practices of worship like Panchmakar, came to be prevalent during the medieval ages. Vulgar, debauch and depraved interpretation of Matsya, Mans, Madira, Mudra and Maithun were presented. Great yogis like Saint Gorakhnath came forward to restore the glory of Yog.
The second reason for the appearance of different doctrines and counter doctrines in the medieval age, was the imposition of ban on learning Sanskrit language for common people. A special class of persons monopolised it, so a number of Mahatmas on account of their low social status were deprived of the Vedic lore. Their followers produced thousands of Aagam books in local dielects parallel to the works of other sects just to prove their superiority. How ludicrous they have made the concept of the Chakras in the physical body on account of not properly following the reality? Generally people know of seven charkas in the body, in Saubhagya Lakshami Upnishad nine Chakras have been described. The disciples of Kabir Sahab have given many more chakras besides them and try to install Kabir Sahab at the apex of them. Sant Puran Singh ji accepts fourteen chakras and believes them to be the domain of Gugu Gorakhnath ji. Guru Nanak Deo ji has been described to have gone above these chakras and to be living in the Mahamahimavati Bihangampur- I would not further go into the descriptions of sectarian rivalries which were going on unbridled in the past. I now discuss your question.
Actually these chakras in the body are metaphorically described. The Mahapurushas through these symbols have attempted to explain the subtle mysteries of the spiritual worlds. These chakras involve the attempts to demonstrate resemblance between the physical body and the cosmos. For example it is imagined that there are seven regions below this earth – namely Atal, Vital, Sutal, Mahatal, Rasatal, Talalal and Patal and six regions above it namely – Bhuvah, Swah, Mahah, Jan, Tap and Satyalok, in the same way there lies below the spinal chord – Mooldhar Chakra which is Bhoolok, below it lies seven places Padtal, Aeri, Gitta, Pindali, Janu, Jungha, and Taragi. The equivalent of regions above the earth are as follows – above the Mooldhar lies Swadhisthan, Manipurak, Anahat, Vishudh, Aagya and Sahstrar – these are seven Chakras or regions. Some called them the seven gates of Chakrayvuh, while others named them the seven steps of Bhakti – devotion- Aehi Maham Ruchir Sapt Sopana, Raghupati Bhagati Kerpanthana
In several Upnishadas of Naigamic tradition like the second part of Akshyupanishad of Krishna Yajurved, they have been called seven preludes or initiations – Bhumikayan of Yog – (Asamvedan, Vichar, Asansrga, Swapna, Shushupti, Turya and Videh Mukti)
In the fifth chapter of the Mahopnishad of Samveda, eight channels or mediums of knowledge are mentioned like Vivek, Vairagya, Shadsampatti (Sham, Daam, Shraddha, Samadhan, Upramata and Titiksha) Mumuksha, Shravan, Manan, Nididhyasan, Sakshatkar. When these seven preludes or initiations get developed and ripened by seven fold steps of knowledge – Shubheksha, Suvicharna, Tanumanasi, Satwapathi, Asansakti, Padarathbhavana and Turyaga, they accrue the outcome and these seven initiations of Yog are more famous as the seven flights of stairs.
Subheksha or desire for goodness is the primary or the first stage. It means desire for attaining that which is pure, unpolluted that is stainless, eternal and the ultimate truth. The desire for the most desirable eternal truth is the first step of Yog, the auspicious beginning. But mere desire for God would not lead one to Him. Where to search Him? When good thoughts start surging in the mind, when restlessness and renunciation overtake inclinations towards God, good conduct begins. This is called deliberation or enquiry, gradually the attachment of the senses with objects become weaker and weaker, faith in God grows stronger and stronger. After this the third stage, known as Tanumansha occurs. Till now the devotee took the physical activities as his own. But now his body consciuosness merges with his mind. The more the mind is destorted, the more it commits blunders, the more it is ordained the more it grasps the Swaroop (Self) and grows introvert. As a result of solitary life and contemplation Satypatti] the fourth stage of Yog is attained. In this stage an awareness of that which is truth, of that which is eternal becomes powerful. Now the soul is roused, the mind starts concentrating on the stainless self. When devotion (Sadhana) is further elevated, the power of Asanshakti (detachment) becomes part of nature. The devotee earns the power to remain unaffected from favourable or unfavourable situations. This is called Asanshakti when Sadhana further develops, the sixth stage known as Padarthbhavani comes. Padartha means objects of enjoyments. Worldly persons seek day and night only the objects of pleasure and are busy in amassing them. For a yogi of this stage such objects are non existent. Siya Ram May Sab Jagh Jani, Karaon Pranam Jori Jugh Pani Such a stage is reached when the presence of God is felt in all the objects of nature. When the objects are non-existent where would the mind wander?
Sarak Narak Upwarg Samana| Jahan Tahan Dekh Dhari Dhanu Bana ||
(Heaven does not appear to be so alluring and hell not so alarming to the Yogi of such a stage because he is now endowed with equipoise. He sees everywhere the active presence of his adored God). This is the meaning of the absence of the objects around.
When the Sadhana further grows subtler, the seventh stage, known as Turyaga is achieved. The Mahapurushas have compared mind with Turang (Horse) because it is very volatile always wandering and forceful. A yogi of this stage rides over such a horse of mind. He is no more a slave of mind rather he is now the controller of it. He can stop his mind whenever he wants (in contemplation or in breath or in the form or in the Brahma – Vidya – metaphysical knowledge) this is the stage of the sublimated mind – Nirodhavastha – The mind is no doubt restrained but it is still very much alive. When the mind is so quietened, when its throbbings or modifications stop, then it is annihilated. All the processes of mind are effaced. Man Mita Maya Miti, Hansa Beparvah | Jaka Kuch Na Chahiye Sui Shahnshah || The yogi now becomes a yogi of the state of Hansha – indifferent to every thing – completely non-involved. Manas describes the features of Hans as follows :-
Jad Chetan Gun Dosh May Vishwa Kinah Kartar |
Sant Hans Gun Gahiham Pay Parihari Vari Vikar ||
The creator created this world as an admixture of good and evil. But those saints who are like Hans (Swan-Like) separate milk from water and accept the milk of divinity and reject the water of perversions or deformations. Saints of such a stature are true Hans. If you offer grass to lion for eating, can it survive? If you keep fish out of water, can it last any more? Similarly divine qualities are the food of a Hans like saint. If the Hans starts enjoying perversions, he is no more a Hans, he falls to the state of a crow. When the devotee aiming at the divine attributes, sublimates his mind and when his restrained mind dissolves, he is ultimately rewarded with the glimpses of the Supreme Consciousness. Such yogis are called Turyateet (beyond the state of Truya - A Videh, transcending body consciousness) and become Jeevan Mukta a man freed from the bondage of life. Whatever was to be attained has been attained, the truth which was to be sought has been achieved. So the yogi becomes now carefree. Nothing remains to be desired and he does not desire anything-Jaka Kuch Na Chahiye– hence he is self contained like the emperor of emperors- Sui Shanshah
In the Aagam books the idea of seven steps or stages as the seven Chakras of the body has been given, for example Mooladhar belongs to Subheksha Yog, Swadhisthan Chakra is related with Suvicharana, Manipurak with Tanumansa, Satwapatti with Anahat, Asanshakti with Vishudh, Padarthbhavani Agyan and Turgaya with Shahshtrar Chakra.
Swami Brahmanand ji was a good saint who used to sing and write Bhajans. In one of his poems he has described the Kundalini Yog –
Niranjan Pad ko sadhu koi pata hai ||
Mooldwar Se Khinch Pawan Ko Ulta Panth Chalata Hai ||
Nabhi Pankaj Dal Mein Soyi Nagin Jai Jagata Hai |
Merudand Ki Sidhi Banakar Shunay Shikhar Chadh Jata Hai |
Bhanwar Gufa Mein Jae Virajai Surata Saij Bhichata Hai
Sashi Mandal Se Amrit Tapke Pikar Pyas Bhujata Hai |
Sab Karmon Ki Dhuni Jalakar Tan Mein Bhasm Ramata Hai |
Brahmanand Swaroop Magan Ho Aap Hi Aap Lakhata Hai |
Niranjan Pad Ko Sadhu Koi Pata Hai |
Brahmanand ji names the supreme stage as stainless eternal soul, ‘Niranjan’. Guru Pad Raj Mridhu Manjul Anjan The dust of the feet of the Guru Maharaj has been likened with soft collyrium which opens the eyes of knowledge. The effect of such a collyrium has been described in the following lines- Sukrit Shambhu Tan Vimal Vibhuti, Manjul Mangal Mod Prastuti - The ashes which Lord Shiva has rubbed on his body denote nothing but the benign spell of the dust of the feet of Guru Maharaj.
There is one Shiva who is beyond virtues and sins and the second one is Lord Shankar who is virtuous. How do two Shivas exist? Actually –Kah Pujniya? Shiv Tatva Nishtah- Who is to be worshipped in this world ? The answer is – that Mahapurush who has absorbed the quintessence of the elements of Shiva. Shiva means the enlightened state of Supreme reality. He who attains this truth is none but Shiva. Only virtuous souls are entitled to attain it. Virtuous persons of the present day by taking the dust of the feet of Sadguru and using it as collyrium attain the state of Shiv. Niranjanpad is the attainment of that absolute state after which even the supporting shelter of the Guru Maharaj is no more required, no more the collyrium is needed. Very rare saints achieve the state of Kaivalya and attain the ultimate knowledge.
What is the method of achieving it? Mooldwar Se Khich Pawan ko Ulta Panth Chalata Hai – There are four petals of lotus in the Mooldwar (the main entrance) which look downward – by Sadhana they are turned upward. Mind, intellect, consciousness and ego are the four petals of the symbolic lotus and they are inverted, upside down. In other words they are inclined towards mundane or the material world. They should be checked from turning towards the material world. This is called Moolbandh. If we fail to restrain them, we can not perform Bhajan. They who are expected to contemplate, contemplate on worldliness. Mind remains busy in the transaction of matter, consciousness remains occupied with the thoughts of the physical world, the operations of the intellect are confined to business like - judgments. Ego too is engrossed in worldliness, their nature, their behaviour is to be transformed. They are to be turned upward to concentrate on Ist (one’s adored God). Mind is the faculty which generates thoughts, recurring contemplations on thoughts are done by consciousness. The intellect is the faculty which takes decision after repeated contemplations. When decisions are translated into action by Ego, Ego creates a feeling that the act was done by me. These are the four petals of the Lotus. Since they are inclined towards the material world, they are to be checked on priority basis. Mind should be kept engaged with the thoughts of God. If consciousness is to contemplate, it should contemplate on the Isht, if the intellect has to take decisions it should take decisions relating to God only and if Ego rises it should be the ego of God, God-motivated ego – Aas Abhiman Jai Jani Bhorey, Mein sewak raghupati pati morey ‘only God is the doer not I’, such a feeling is to be nursed. This is called Moolbundh. After this real Bhajan starts. This is the main entrance of Yog practice hence it is known as Mooldwar, the first window of self realisation. The winds of worldliness ever blow in the internal four regions of the heart, they are to be pulled and plucked and their current is to be turned towards the Ist. As soon as the practice develops the female snake is woken up. Nabhi Pankaj Dal Mein Soyi Nagin Jai Jagata Hai.
Nabhi means the centre, the hub where all kinds of Sanskaras – good and bad impressions or sacraments are centralised. In the triangle of this Nabhi – Kamal (Lotus of Navel) the female serpent (Nagin) lies coiled. Actually this female serpent is nothing but the Chittvritti (the impulses of the mind) which lies coiled in the intervals of Sat, Raj and Tam – gunas (attributes). When these modifications of thoughts flow towards the material objects, they go on vomiting the venom of worldliness and torture men in horrible ways. Lotus in the navel is the symbol of downward flowing six kinds of depravations – Lust, Wrath, Avarice, Attachment, Arrogance and jealousy. When they look upward the six depravations are converted into six properties – discernment, Renunciation, tranquility, self restraint, sacrifice, fortitude.
This is all symbolical. You should not take this symbolical lotus as physical lotus blooming in navel. Withdrawal of the mind from six depravations and directing it towards six properties has symbolically been said the awakening of the female snake.
Ya Nisha Sarvey Bhutanam Tasyam Jagruti Sayami ||
In the Geeta Lord Krishna says, “ O Arjun! All the creatures lie in stupor in the world, symbolised as night. People running day and night and making frantic efforts, are only dreamers. Only those who have self restraint get awakened. The self–restraint is possible only when discernment, Renunciation, tranquility, self control, sacrifice and fortitude have been attained. Goswami Tulsidas ji also says the same thing. Moha Nisha Sabh Sovnihara, dekhhin sapan anek prakara. (All men lie in deep slumber in the night of Moha (Infatuation). Those who run day and night making fruitless efforts are only dreaming dreams. Then who wakes up from this lethargic slumber? Sui Pur Patan Bhauri Na Dekha Aayi, Aehi jag Jamin Jagahi, Permarthi Prapanch Viyogi. Those who are Permarathi or in other words restless for attaining the Supreme opulence, abjuring the charms of the illusory world, are really awakened. Till the fellow is lying in slumber of Moha (Delusion), the female snake goes on biting him again and again, forcing him to take birth after births. The effect of the poison does not lessen, the creatures go on groaning and groaning. They can not finally even meet their end also because they are the part of God also. Neither total annihlation nor total bliss is possible. Janiya Tabahin Jiv Jag Jaga, Jab Sab Vishay Vilas Viraga (You should take the creatures really awakened only when they have renounced all the attachments with worldly objects). Thus we find that all the seers speak the same truth. As soon as the practice develops, ascent and decent of Bhajan (Meditation) is regulated by the breath. All the seers and sages have laid emphasis on it. Shwas Prashwas par Ramkehu Vratha Shwas Mat Khoye, Na Jane Yehi Shwas Ka Awan Hoi No Hoi. (Do not waste even a single breath without uttering with it the name of Ram. No body knows whether the next breath would be possible to take or not). Lord Buddha says that you should concentrate on the process of breathing (on the process of inhalation and exhalation of the breath). The words and style changed no doubt from time to time, but essence of the truth explained by Mahapurushas is the same. Although the entire body is energised by the breath yet the sages have directed to observe closely the outgoing and incoming breath circulating from the nose to the navel, propped up by the spinal chord for the concentration of the mind and for turning it inward. The mind is ordained to stand and witness when does the breath enter and when does it revert? How long does it stay out before entering again? Not even a single breath should move without our notice, you have to fix up the Surati (mind’s eye) on the breath and when the power to witness it develops very slowly you should consign the adored name of the contemplation with it (breath). The sound of OM should get blended with every incoming and outgoing breath. OM or RAM whichever name is suitable to you should be mingled with the breath. Now the female serpent is aroused and flows with the contemplation on breathing. This is known as the laddar of the spinal chord. In some Upnishads, Merudand (spinal chord) has been described as Veenadand (Typical Indian lute). By converting the spinal chord into ladder, the yogi through the breathing process gets installed on the summit of the void where all kinds of thoughts good or bad sleep forever. Only the awareness of the goal remains, nothing else crosses the counciouness. The yogi goes on watching vigilantly one for whom he had been yearning since long but he never becomes inert or mechanical. With boundless love, the mind’s eye (Surata) gets perfectly centralised on the name, the breath blended with the name should be like an unbroken chord. In the words of our reverend Maharajji, ‘The breath should stand erect like a bamboo only the rhythmic sound of OM-OM should go on flowing without break. No thought rises in the mind, no volitions from out side penetrates only the unbroken meditation goes on and on. This state has been named as Shunya Shikhar (Summit of void). A yogi of such a state is installed in the cave of the humming bee where he spreads the sheet of his Surata, (mind’s eye) Bramar Gufa Mein Jaye Viraje, Surata Sej Vichata Hai
The sages have compared God with flower and mind with bee. A famous song of Sant Kabir which was very dear to Mahraj ji, gives the same connotation – Phulwa Ke Chuhath Bhanwar Mari Jayi, Ka Kahin Kaisa Kahin KoPatiyayi (The moment the bee touches the flower, it dies. What to say and to whom to say? Who would believe it). God is like a flower. The bee of the mind, which had been so restless for realising Him, stops the moment it climbs upon the summit of the void and becomes tranquil in the vaccuous cave. But the bed of Surati (Mind’s eye) is essential for this otherwise the mind would never be stationary. Surati is the name of the Mind’s eye. Suppose while you are sitting here and are enthralled to see the rain of colours, someone comes and whispers in your ears that your child has fallen down from the roof and is hospitalised in an unconscious state, instantly you would lose the sight of the scenes you had been seeing despite the fact that your eyes and ears are open. Every part of the baby’s body, the face the teeth the nose, hands, legs, eyes all clearly appear before your mind’s eye. The sight of the object which is physically absent before you, is presented by the mind’s eye which is known as Surati. With the help of this Surati the Bhajan is performed. A yogi reaches his goal by fixing up this Surati on the breath. Sashi Mandal Se Amrit Tapke Pikar Pyas Bhujata Hai- drops from the region of Moon, the yogi drinks it and thus quenches his thirst. When the Surati got fixed on the summit of void, a celestial light descends. The Supreme self who is immortal beyond death and decay, becomes comprehensible and perceptible. After attaining him, the thirst of the self is quenched for ever. No material achievements can ever quench his thirst. The self, which is the part of the Supreme self and hence the child of immortality can be satisfied only when it is linked with its root, it gets satisfied only after attaining its primeval form. Whatever was to be attained has been attained. Now whom to seek through Bhajan? What for Karmas are to be done? So he burns all his Karmas (actions) and rubs its ashes on his body (Sab Karmo Ki Dhuni Jalakar Tan Mein Basm Ramata Hai). The same Karmas (actions) and practices which were so essential become irrelevant after the attainment, hence they are burned. It causes no damage of any kind. Its resultant ashes and its majestic grandeur now bedeck the body.
Shri Krishna in chapter – 4/16-19 of the Geeta says – O! Arjun even wise men and discreet persons are confused about Karma, Vikrama and Akram. No one can attain enlightenment without performing the Karma (action) all the sages and seers of the past could attain the state of actionlessness only after performing the Karmas “Yasya Sarvey Samarambha Kam Sankalp Varjitah” but the Karma which was started with perfection and which grew so subtle and keen that it rose above desires and thoughts, gets burnt in the fire of knowledge for ever (Gyanagni Daghdh Karmanam). The self realised Mahapurushas have described sages of such a state as Pundits (Seers).
The Lord says in the Gita (5/19) – Ihaiva Tairjitah Sargo, Yesam Samye Sthitam Manah, Nirdssam Hi Samam Brahma, Tasmad Brahmanite Sthitah “O! Arjun those whose minds got equipoise, they stand still and steady in the void where the bed of the Surati lies unfolded. Now what is the relation of the still, steady mind with conquest of the world. Shri Krishna says Nirdosham Hi Samam Brahm – The Brahm (God) is stainless and even (Sam), the mind of such a yogi also becomes stainless and even. So he merges with Brahm (God) – (Tasmad Brahminatey Sithatha).
A reference of “Gyanagni Dagdh Karmanam” which occurs in the fourth chapter of the Geeta was given a while ago. Knowledge or Gyan does not mean memorising and producing by wrote memory some principles of metaphysics. In fact knowledge means the realisation which -dawns with the vision of God. In the tenth chapter of the Geeta (10/3), the Lord says Yo Mamajamanadim cha Vetti Loka-Mahesvaram, Asamartyeshu, Sarvapapaih pramucyate || The mortals who realise Me (God) my supreme entity which is primeval having no beginning or end, are the real men of knowledge. Knowledge means the spiritual experiences which one gets at the time of realising God. If one does not go through practical process, no use of his delving deep in doctrines and dogmas. You can not know about the Himalayas by just seeing its drawing on the chart, you can know it only when you tread on it. Thus we see that knowledge means enlightenment which dawns at the time of fulfillment of the Sadhana (spiritual endeavour) in the form of restraint of the mind and the divine perception of God. Now nothing remains to seek because according to every sage whatever was to be achieved has been achieved. There remains no entity to be realised – Karmas (actions) are burnt for ever. Since there is no God beyond, so whom to worship now? So Bhajan also concludes at this point. “Bhajan Hamarah Jai Karen Hum Paye Vishram.” (Now God would perform the Bhajan on my behalf, I am now totally retired this is the correct import of burning the Karmas and rubbing ashes on the body. At last he says “lost in the bliss of God, he sees Him in all and all in Him’ (Brahmanand Swaroop Magan Ho aap Hi aap Lakhata Hai) when God owns, he does not leave a devotee as a separate soul. Janat Tumahahi Tumahahi Hoi Jai - After knowing Him he merges with Him – The servant, the attendant goes forever only the master remains. Ishwar Asham Jiv Avinashi – This soul is the inseparable immaculate part of the immortal being. As soon as the root is touched during the period of correct practices (Sadhana), the part is effaced out and only the whole, the immanent whole remains. The part is dissolved, he finds Godliness diluted in himself. When God owns anyone, He grants His Godliness to him, He makes him also the master, never allows him to remain as servant anymore. So only He and He alone becomes visible everywhere in everything. (Aaphi Aap Lakhata Hai). Every genuine saint definitely attains this state.
Swami Brahmanand has not elaborated the description of seven Chakras located in the body. But the inner meaning of the steps in the spinal chord can be followed. He has given the description of Mooladhar. Above this Chakra is situated Swadhisthan, Swa means yourself, Adhisthan means seat or habitation. In other words your faith in your swaroop (form) is fixed. Now it can not be dislodged. At this stage six petals namely Lust, Wrath, Avarice, Arrogance, Infatuation and jealousy are downward looking. When they look up they are turned into six glories – Discernment, Renunciation, Restraint, Endurance, Sacrifice and Fortitude. This is called the blooming of the Lotus.
When the Sadhana (spiritual edeavour) further develops, the Chakra named Manipur, comes. Ten petalled lotus is found there which are known as five Karmendriyas (organs of action) and five Gyanendriyas (sense organs). They now turn from downward to upward posture, to the direction of the Ist. The moment they are regulated, the Manipur is covered. The sages have compared every breath with Mani (Jewel). Tat Bhagti Mani Uar Bas Jake, Dukh Lavlesh Na Sapnehu Take - (When this jewel of devotion is fixed in the heart of devotee, there is no room for even slight pain for him in the world). The primordial nature of matter (Ashtdha) is converted into Ashtsiddhi (eight fold achievements). Some say that the lotus at this step is of eight petals. Since the yogi remains untouched by the mundane filth, so he has been likened with lotus.
The gradual progress of Sadhana (spiritual endeavour) leads to Anahat Chakra. Twelve petalled lotus blooms here. The ten senses were already present, now two more petals of mind and intellect (thought and judgment) join it and thus the twelve petalled lotus now blooms. The devotee is now capable of retaining the glories of God. He is not moved by the buffets of the physical world and advances on his path undaunted.
The Vishuddh Charka, which comes next after this has sixteen petals. This body is composed of five elements – Earth, Water, Fire, Space and Air, the constituents of the material body. Within it lies a subtle body which is the world of mind and this is made of sixteen elements – ten senses –Chatushtaya Antah Karan– Tejas & Pragyas. The divine light out breaks in it. Kavira Man Nirmal Bhaya, Jaisa Ganga Nir, Pichae Lagey Hari Phiray Kahet Kabir Kabir - (When the mind becomes clean like the water of Ganga Hari (God) runs after me yelling Kabir! Kabir!) When the subtle body of sixteen elements becomes purified and perfect instantly thereafter occurs. Agya Chakra. Master and the servant stand here interface, they are represented as the two petals of this Chakra. The devotee now has only to obey. When the Sadhana further improves under his guidance, then the last chakra, Sahastrar comes ‘Sahastra’ means innumerable too. When innumerable inclinations and dispositions become God-oriented, when moving under the command of God not even a single disposition remains downward looking, ‘Vishwae Anuh Sa Vishnu ha’ - the Supreme power which permeates in every atom, starts transmitting His realizations and gets him acquainted with His glories. When the Sadhak (devotee) fails to grasp, God Himself enables him to see His cosmic form as it happened in the case of Kagbhusundi and Arjun. On seeing it the devotee gets dissolved in the same cosmic consciousness. God converts his body into His own abode. For the good of the devotee God Himself assumes the body of the devotee. He makes the saints happy and helps them despite the troubles and problems. Janat Tumahi Tumahi Hoi Jai Now the nomenclature of jiva (Self) ends. God accepts it as His habitation
Ram Bhagat Hit Nar Tan Dhari, Sahi Sankat Kiya Sadhu Sukhari.
(For the welfare of the devotee God accepts his body and his sufferings and makes the saintly persons happy.)
To sum up the concept of Hatha, Kundlini and different Chakras is all aimed at turning the devotee into an introvert being. Most of the saints regard devotion (Bhakti) better than Chakra Bhedan because Bhakti (Devotion) enables one to easily cross all these stages. That is why in ancient religious books, there is no reference of them. The sages have said from time to time that the state of Godliness is achieved the moment mind becomes stable and stainless. For knowing it systematically and in detail, you should go through the Geeta which is Yog-Darshna (Philosophy of Yog). A critique on the Geeta known as Yathartha Geeta has been published by the Ashram. If you study it all your doubts regarding Yog and other things related with it would be removed forever.
Om Sadguru deo Bhagwan Ki Jai
(Glory to the Sadguru deo Bhagwan)
NOTE:-The Scripture: Originally all the scriptures were oral, the disciples used to memorise them in ancient days. They were not in the form of written books. Five thousand years back Vedvyas for the first time put them in black and white. The four Vedas, the Mahabharat, the Bhagwat the Geeta and other important books were all compiled by him. He had himself written them but did not call them all Shastra. He did not say that the Vedas were Shastra. But singing the praise of the Geeta, he placed it on the high pedestal of the Shastra. He said Gita Sugita Kartavya, Kim Anyaih Shastra Vistaraih, Ya Svyam Padama Nabhaayasa Mukha Padmad Vinih Srita (The Geeta is worth taking to heart after thoroughly understanding it because it is the voice of God, sprung from His lips). If it is so, why to bother about other Shastras? What is the need to collect them? Whatever valuable is found at other places, it is all derived from the Geeta. The philosophy of monoism is borrowed from the Geeta.
For detailed knowledge please read the Yathartha Geeta. For the attainment of every kind of wealth – spiritual as well as the material, read Yathartha Gita.
The Devotees Shri Param Hans Ashram