Chakras In Relation to the Gods
Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami , 2014-01-18
An important feature of Saiva Siddhanta is the mixing of Monism and Theism. Worshiping in the temple and meditating are inter-related quite dynamically. In our tradition the kundalini force requires Lord Murugan's help to awaken it. Ways to lose anahata consciousness: Thwarted willpower, strong desires, discontent. If we can remain balanced, content and self-contained, bihaishum, we can stay there in the heart center. Master Course, Merging with Siva, Lessons 272, 281, 284. Master Course, Dancing with Siva, Lesson 24.
Good morning everyone.
Continuing on from the ideas presented last week. So I thought I'd review the last idea we presented last week for continuity.
"The 14 chakras have been described as a pole one must climb. The pole is heavily greased with ghee. It's a slippery pole. Therefore, the helping hand of our loving Ganesha, who reaches down from the muladhara, is needed to lift up the aspirant. It's the helping hand of Lord Murugan that reaches down from the anahata chakra, grabbing and lifting the devotee up. It is the helping hand of Siva that reaches down from the ajna chakra and lifts one up. One cannot do it alone. Total surrender to the Gods is the only way. Karma yoga, bhakti yoga, japa yoga is the way to attract their attention. The guru keeps the path in view, but he does not walk it for you. "
As we mentioned, an important feature of Saiva Siddhanta is the mixing of Monism and Theism. In this case it's expressed in the idea of, in meditation which is generally thought of as a practice, you're just going in yourself, inside yourself; it's not related to the Deities. But Gurudeva's pointing out that we actually get help from the Deities to raise us up in the chakras so that we can meditate better. That's a true science of Saiva Siddhanta: Worshiping in the temple and meditating are inter-related quite dynamically.
Moving on to today's Merging with Siva, Lesson 281.
"It may help, as we examine each of these centers individually, to visualize man as a seven-storied building, with each story being one of the chakras. Awareness travels up and down in the elevator, and as it goes higher and higher, it gains a progressively broader, more comprehensive and beautiful vista. Reaching the top floor, it views the panorama below with total understanding, not only of the landscape below, but also of the relation of the building to other buildings and of each floor to the next.
"In Sanatana Dharma, another analogy is used to portray the chakras--that of a lotus flower. This flower grows in lakes and pools, taking root in the slimy mud below the surface where no light penetrates. Its stem grows upward toward the light until it breaks the surface into fresh air and sunshine. The energy of the sun then feeds the bud and leaves until the delicate lotus blossom opens. The first chakra, is called the root chakra, muladhara. Awareness takes root in the baser instincts of human experience and then travels through the waters of the intellect, becoming more and more refined as it evolves, until finally it bursts into the light of the superconscious mind, where it spiritually flowers into the 1,008-petaled lotus chakra at the top of the head. By examining the functions of these seven great force centers, we can clearly cognize our own position on the spiritual path and better understand our fellow man."
So Gurudeva liked that analogy. He liked the, as he mentions in the Master Course, it's good to have simple analogies we can use to explain the idea of spiritual unfoldment in the Hindu tradition.
In other words verses some complicated explanation with lots of Sanskrit terms. This one's easier to understand. The lotus flower starts in the mud, moves through the water, gets up to the surface and then it blossoms. So very distinct stages that it goes through and in the mud: The mud represents the instinctive mind, the water the intellectual mind and the surface is the superconscious mind and then when it blossoms it's unity with God. That's what it symbolizes. So, very simple process that one goes through and is at one stage or another of it.
So related idea, as it said in the review paragraph: "Lord Murugan reaches down from the anahata chakra, grabbing and lifting the devotee up." So I thought I'd read the related sloka in Dancing with Siva which is Sloka 24.
"What is the nature of Lord Karttikeya?
"Lord Karttikeya, Murugan, first guru and Pleiadean master of kundalini yoga, was born of God Siva's mind. His dynamic power awakens spiritual cognition to propel souls onward in their evolution to Siva's feet.
"Lord Karttikeya flies through the mind's vast substance from planet to planet. He could well be called the Emancipator, ever available to the call of those in distress. Lord Karttikeya, God of will, direct cognition and the purest, child-like divine love, propels us onward on the righteous way through religion, His Father's law."
So that's important there; let me mention that again. So, whereas Ganesha relates to the first three chakras, Murugan relates to the third, fourth and fifth chakras or willpower, cognition and divine love.
"Lord Karttikeya, God of will, direct cognition and the purest, child-like divine love, propels us onward on the righteous way through religion, His Father's law. Majestically seated on the manipura chakra, this scarlet-hued God blesses mankind and strengthens our will when we lift to the inner sky through sadhana and yoga. The yoga pada begins with the worship of Him. The yogi, locked in meditation, venerates Karttikeya, Skanda, as his mind becomes as calm as Saravana, the lake of Divine Essence. The kundalini force within everyone is held and controlled by this powerful God, first among renunciates, dear to all sannyasins. Revered as Murugan in the South, He is commander in chief of the great devonic army, a fine, dynamic soldier of the within, a fearless defender of righteousness. He is Divinity emulated in form. The Vedas say, 'To such a one who has his stains wiped away, the venerable Sanatkumara shows the further shore of darkness. Him they call Skanda.'"
So again it's pointing out another way in which temple worship and meditation are related. In this case it's talking about the kundalini force. In our tradition the kundalini force requires Lord Murugan's help to awaken it. So the Theism there relates again to the meditative practice.
And one more lesson that's related, 284. This will be Merging with Siva, 284.
"With the spiritual will aroused, awareness flows quite naturally into the anahata chakra, the heart center, governing the faculties of direct cognition or comprehension. Connected to the cardiac plexus, this chakra is often referred to as 'the lotus of the heart.' Its twelve "petals" imply that the faculty of cognition can be expressed in twelve distinct ways or through as many masks or personae. Its color is a smoky green. Man usually awakens into this region of cognition around age twenty-one to twenty-six. Life for seekers in this chakra is different than for others. It is in anahata, literally "unstruck sound," that the aspirant attains his mountaintop consciousness. Instead of viewing life in its partial segments, like seeing just the side of the mountain, he raises his consciousness to a pinnacle from which an objective and comprehensive cognition of the entirety is the natural conclusion. Uninvolved in the seemingly fractured parts, he is able to look through it all and understand--as though he were looking into a box and seeing the inside, the outside, the top and the bottom all at the same time. It looks transparent to him and he is able to encompass the totality in one instantaneous flash of direct cognition. He knows in that split second all there is to know about a subject and yet would find it difficult to verbalize that vast knowing. Various highly endowed psychics are prone to utilize this force center, for such spiritual powers as healing are manifested here.
"People with the anahata chakra awakened are generally well-balanced, content and self-contained. More often than not, their intellect is highly developed and their reasoning keen. The subtle refinement of their nature makes them extremely intuitive, and what is left of the base instincts and emotions is easily resolved though their powers of intellect. It is important that the serious aspirant gain enough control of his forces and karmas to remain stabilized at the heart center. This should be home to him, and he should rarely or never fall below anahata in consciousness."
So that's a good goal. Never fall below. Well, why do we fall below? Well, something below gets stimulated and willpower is strongly related to anger. So, when our will gets thwarted either by someone else or just by the fact that we're doing something and it didn't work out, that energy that we're using to push can turn into anger.
Every other chakra is connected so you have the connected is the willpower, the memory and the anger. It's easy to get from thwarted willpower into anger if you're not careful. Likewise, it's easy to go from reason, start thinking about something too much, you go down to fear. So fear, reason and the anahata-cognition are connected. So those are all internalized. And then the anger, the memory and the willpower are externalized forces.
So, thwarted willpower is an easy way to lose the anahata consciousness. Another one is just strong desires with something stimulates us and we become the donkey in the donkey and the carrot comparison. The carrot is the desire and we're the donkey. Carrot's out there and we think it's going to make us happy in some way. So we get into that consciousness of trying to fulfill a strong desire and that pulls us out of the fourth chakra.
So the fourth chakra, as Gurudeva says: "Well balanced, content and self-contained." So if either of those other two things happens, thwarted will or strong desire, then we lose our balance; we become discontent because we want something. We want something to be different than it is. That's thwarted willpower. We want something to be different than it is. We're not able to accept the obstacle that someone else has placed in our path or that we have just encountered by ourselves.
So we become discontent and we're no longer self-contained if we, seeking in to fulfill a desire because we need something that we don't have. So if we can remain balanced, content and self-contained then we can stay there.
There's a Shum word, bihaishum, it relates to that, feeling of completeness. Which means, another way of saying self-contained. We don't need something more than we have. Feeling of completeness and contentment under all circumstances; used as a greeting. So bihaishum. Then of course it relates to the Sanskrit word, santosha, which is one of the niyamas or contentment.
So, thank you very much. Have a great day.