Saturday, August 27, 2011

From ‘Sadhguru. More than a life’ by Arundhathi Subramaniam

……. I recalled Sister Nivedita’s line about her early encounter with Swami Vivekananda: ‘…. I saw that although he had a system of thought to offer, nothing in that system would claim him for a moment, if he found that truth led elsewhere.’

A body ‘from which God was radiating terrifically,’ was how Frank Humphreys, a Western disciple, once described Ramana Maharshi.

….. linga …….. is a symbol associated with phallus worship …….. But it is also much more than that, he tells you. The ellipsoid is actually a fundamental form. Modern science holds that the core of every galaxy is an ellipsoid. Spiritual seers from various traditions have always known that it is the first form to emerge from formlessness (or the void, or whatever you choose to call that primordial state.) It is also the last form before dissolution.

….. if one could just learn to dream dreams of which one doesn’t feel compelled to be the protagonist. ‘If you have the necessary stability to remove yourself from the activity you are doing, if you can completely eliminate your person from whatever you do, suddenly you can raise the pitch of your activity to a completely different dimension. ’

The traditional veneration of snakes and cows in India, he often explains, is not a mere matter of superstition. ……. the snake is a significant step in the evolutionary process of the being. So is the cow. That’s why in this culture, you are not supposed to kill either. ….. A snake always gets a proper burial, because in terms of it's being, it is very close to a human being. Killing a snake has always been seen as murder.’

If mothers do die …… it's not the end of the world. Most of the people suffer from an excess of guilt rather than grief anyway. That’s why the Hindu way of giving the bereaved lots of activity to engage in immediately after the death has always seemed to me to be a clever way of handling things.’

….. Jaggi …….. ‘ … I had nothing to do, so I went to Chamundi Hill.’

. ……. He sums up what happened next simply: ‘I went up and didn’t come down.’ When he eventually did return, it was five hours later……. He had gone up, a young happy-go-lucky motorcyclist. He returned, a mystic.

‘I was just sitting on this particular rock,’ he was to say years later. ‘I had my eyes open, not even closed. I thought it was about ten minutes, but something began to happen to me. All my life I had thought, this is me [pointing to himself]. Suddently, I did not know which was me and which was not me. The air that I was breathing, the rock on which I was sitting, the atmosphere around me, everything had become me. ……. What was me had become so enormous, it was everywhere. I thought this lasted a few minutes, but when I came back to my normal senses, it was about seven thirty in the evening ………..’


A week later, the experience recurred. He was at the dining table with his family when it happened. ……. He thought it was for a couple of minutes. Seven hours had elapsed. On another occasion, thirteen days passed. ‘I just sat down for thirteen full days,’ he says. ‘I neither ate nor slept nor used the toilet for these thirteen days. I simply sat down.’

……. ‘My voice changed; my eyes were bigger, brighter,’ ……

People usually become heavy and serious with knowledge. But when knowledge is transmitted in the form of energy, not as memory, the burden of knowledge is not on you.

… Jaggi took a group on a trek up the Kumara Parvat in Karnataka. …. And ….. informed the group that Lord Kartikeya or Muruga …… had left his body up on this very hill.

….. a line by the Buddha. ‘Gautama said it is better to walk alone than in bad company. If you are alone, you could walk slow r fast, but at least you are walking in a certain direction. It's better than being dragged backwards.’ ……….

He once recounted a story about the Sufi mystic, Jalal-ud-din-Rumi:

‘When Rumi went to the house of his beloved and knocked on the door, his lover asked, “Who is it?” ’

‘Rumi replied, “It is I, Rumi.”

‘The door did not open. Rumi was so much in love that he wept for days together. Again and again he went to the door. Each time, the voice asked, “Who is it?”

‘Rumi said, “I, Rumi, and I am willing to die for you.”

‘The door stayed shut. One day, after all this turmoil and suffering, he arrived at a different state within himself. He went to the door once again.

‘The voice asked, “Who is it?”

‘Rumi replied, “It is you.” And the door opened.

‘One aspect of Samadhi is your contact with the body becomes minimal. It can be brought down to a one-pointed contact. We call that nirvikalpa samadhi. It means that your contact with your body is minimal, like a thread. If you break that thread, then it is mahasamadhi …….. Normally when people are like that we keep them in certain levels of inactivity and safety. We keep them in protected atmospheres. We don’t expose them to outside situations, because with the smallest disturbance, they may leave the body.’

Sadhguru’s description of the Dhyanlinga consecration has to be the most lucid account in recorded history of an incredibly arcane yogic process.

The aim, he says, was to create an energy form with seven chakras operating at their optimal condition. In the human being, the chakras are held in place by karmic substance. For the Dhyanalinga, however, he was clear that no karmic substance was to be used. …… The challenge, therefore, was to lock the chakras with pranic substance from all three participants, although this lacked the tenacity of it's karmic counterpart.

…….. Since one person was missing, creating three threads of prana without karmic substance from three different bodies, taking and weaving it and tying it up in a certain way, was difficult ….. The three threads were actual nadis or channels, one from Bharathi, one of mine, and another also from me created in Vijji’s flavor.

………. Bharathi …….. ‘I remember the lingarandhram – the copper tube containing mercury, energized with qualities of the seven chakras – which was to be inserted into the lingam and sealed before the completion of the consecration. This was a major step’

…… perhaps the most intriguing was the locking of the throat chakra or vishuddhi (known as the seat of power). Vishuddhi meditation, Sadhguru explained, is rarely encouraged, since it can create needlessly powerful people who lack the responsibility and balance to handle that power. …… Sadhguru eventually decided to use a one-time yogi for the process. ‘He was a disembodied being, looking for dissolution,’ he said later. ‘It was late night on an amavasya ……. We used a coconut in a certain way to trap this being and do what we had to do. He was being willingly trapped ……. Once he realized how he was going to be used, he was more than willing …… So we actually trapped this yogi, made him into pure energy and put him in the vishuddhi chakra. He became a part of the Dhyanalinga.’

A brahmachari recalls that once the coconut was set in a certain place, a little snake crawled up to it right away. Sadhguru explained later that snakes are invariably attracted to a certain kind of energy.

The most distinctive feature of the entire consecration process was the fact that it entailed no rituals or mantras. This, Sadhguru has often pointed out, is a characteristic of the south Indian tradition of yoga, associated with the sage, Agastya. ‘Everything here is done with pure energy. We don’t care to use mantras. We simply use energy’

The Dhyanalinga consecration was completed on 23 June 1999. ….. Sadhguru has often said that it will take a couple of generations for the world to fully appreciate just what the Dhyanalinga signifies for humanity at large. ……. What every viewer sees is the imposing black stone ellipsoid. ….. the only reason for it's existence is that most people need a visual focus for their meditation. The actual linga is essentially a fully functional subtle body, entirely invisible, with all the seven chakras operating optimally. It's function is essentially meditative. While the well-known Jyotirlingas in various parts of the country address specific issues of health and material wellbeing, the Dhyanalinga is the only linga that addresses all the seven chakras simultaneously. Sitting in it's precincts is equivalent to sitting in the presence of a live master – one who showers his grace unceasingly, freely, impartially, silently.

Is the linga a phallic symbol? ….. Sadhguru explains that the linga is a combination of the feminine and the masculine – one of the most unique and audacious ideas conceived by Eastern spiritual culture. ‘When the masculine and feminine meet at the lowest level, it is known as sex. When the same masculine and feminine meet at the highest level, it signifies the union of Shiva and Shakti. In this conjunction, Shiva is rupa or form; Shakti is shoonya, or nothingness.’

….. why are there no rituals in the Dhyanalinga? ……. Sadhguru explains that rituals are traditionally a means to renew the energy of a sacred space. But the Dhyanalinga has been consecrated through pure energy work and requires no maintenance or revival.

…… ‘engineering marvel’. ‘The elliptical dome that we built to house the Dhyanalinga is seventy-six feet in diameter and thirty-three feet high. No steel, no cement and no concrete have been used; just brick and mud mortar, stabilized with lime, sand, alum and herbal additives …… The nature of the design ensures a life of at least five thousand years for the dome’

As he once remarked, ‘I utter every word consciously, not habitually. That gives the words power. Spirituality is about not allowing anything to happen to you unconsciously.’

…… This life energy in you created your whole body. These bones, this flesh, this heart, this kidney and everything, can’t it create a piece of cartilage? If your energies are kept in full flow and proper balance, they are definitely capable of recreating the physical.

…… Kailash ……. he has often termed ‘the greatest mystical library in the planet’.

‘You don’t look for your guru,’ says Sadhguru firmly. ‘You just deepen the longing in you. When you know the true pain of ignorance, a guru will happen. You don’t have to look. If you sit with him, everything in you should feel threatened. You want to run away, but there is something in you which keeps on pulling you towards him – you can assume then that he is your guru. …. A guru’s intention is to awaken you, not to put you to sleep. He is somebody who disturbs all kinds of conclusions that you have drawn. ……’

Once during a car ride, I asked him if there was anything he immediately ‘knew’ about his surroundings. ‘If I am passing a place that is consecrated in a certain way, I would know right away,’ he answered. ‘And if someone is recently dead around here, I would know that as well.’

Any deep identification – with scripture, ideology, opinion, philosophy, prejudice or belief –becomes the hurdle on this journey. …. If you don’t mess with the human mind, it's very natural for human beings to seek. Unlike a believer who thinks he knows, a seeker starts from the position, “I don’t know”. As soon as you become an “I don’t know”, life begins to happen to you in a huge way.’

……. Schoolteachers, followed by parents, have, with all their good intentions, probably perpetrated more collective evil on humanity than Hitler.

….. truth is necessarily beyond belief and unbelief; that the spiritual journey needs seekers, not believers.

‘In yoga we don’t believe in sudden enlightenment. We make enlightenment into a process. In Zen, they wait for enlightenment to happen like a blossoming flower: a sudden enlightenment. But in yoga, we let it happen gradually, because, if it happens suddenly, you could leave the body. We don’t want that to happen. ’

‘ ….. Sex in the body is fine; money in the pocket is fine. It's only a problem when they enter the mind.’ …… ‘Brahmacharya’ he says simply, ‘is just a way of organizing your energies in such a way that your peace and your joy are all your own. …. If you do it willingly, it is wonderful…….’

‘ ….. If you have sufficient mastery, if you’re able to leave your body consciously, you should leave when everything is well. ….. the way I will die will be visibly spectacular – like a signature.’


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