Purify Subconscious, Let Go of Negative Attachments
Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami , 2015-05-06
With the worship of Lord Karttikeya, the study of Gurudeva's teachings and the practice of daily sadhana awaken kundalini in a gentle controlled way. Through svadhyaya, communion with Ishta Devata is established. Reflect on and understand to get the subconscious mind in order not harboring negative attachments; it becomes sub-superconscious. Let go of the past and have a plan for handling similar situations in the future. The five kleshas: ignorance, identification with I-am-ness, attraction, aversion and clinging to life. Adjust to Siva's point of view then overcome clinging to life as we know it.
Master Course, Dancing with Siva, Merging with Siva, Lesson 24.
Patanjali's Yoga Sutras
Guru Brahma, Guru Vishnu, Guru Devo Mahesvara, Guru Sakshat, Parabrahma, Tasmai Sri Gurave Namaha.
Good morning everyone. Nice to be back.
From today's Dancing with Siva, 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 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. 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 in our tradition in Saiva Siddhanta as it says here: "The yoga pada begins with the worship of Him." Pretty straight-forward. And in our temple here, for whatever reason, our Murugan shrine isn't the same every day of the year in its strength. It is quite strong on Murugan's festival days verses other days. So, if you're trying to get acquainted with Lord Murugan or you're trying to deepen your relationship with Lord Murugan through this temple it works best on his festival days. So Skanda Shastri is particularly good cause it's more than one day. Six chances, so it could be five. Even though it's called Skanda Shastri sometimes it's only five days long, cause of the nature of tithis.
So the yoga pada begins with the worship of Him. And then more specifically: "The kundalini force within everyone is held and controlled by this powerful God, first among renunciates..." So we're trying to have the kundalini awakened but in a controlled way. So, it's a gentle awakening through worshiping of Lord Murugan and through the study of Gurudeva's teaching and the practice of daily sadhana the kundalini awakens in a very gentle and very natural way. We don't want to awaken it too quickly or in an unnatural way and then it can go up the wrong channel and it can also cause shaking. Some people are twitching. In we've seen some people Siddha yoga, the Muktananda group. They twitch. So, that's not good you know. It means it didn't quite go up in the right way. So we want, if we do all this then there's no problem. It just naturally and slowly goes up the right channel.
Well, how does that relate to Patanjali? You're all dying to find the answer to that, why that was what was on your mind since I started talking about Sloka 24.
Patanjali said: "Through self-study communion is established with one's chosen Deity." Ishta Devata, chosen deity. Through self-study, svadhyaya communion is established. That means we're getting close, right? Communion means there's contact. There's a sense of closeness. So how do we grade a sense of closeness, through svadhyaya. What is svadhyaya? Well in Patanjali's system it's a little broader according to the commentators because there's no separate one for japa. In our system there's ten niyamas, in Patanjali's there's only five. So the commentators say this one includes japa.
So repeating a mantra to Lord Murugan is very important way to get closer. Scriptural study as well. So that idea is basically a twenty show, it's found in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras.
And from today's Lesson 24 from Merging with Siva.
When you first think about practicing yoga you're focused on your thoughts, controlling your thoughts. Which is the conscious mind. Our thoughts are past, present and future, different kinds of thoughts. And we're very familiar with that. So, controlling thoughts we tend to think of that's what's required to be successful in meditation. However, Gurudeva and Patanjali both say: Well there's more to the mind than just the conscious mind. We have to get the subconscious mind in order as well. So, how do we do that? There's a number of techniques in Gurudeva's teachings to do that. This is, we're going to read one of them. And in Patanjali that's called the samskaras. So the samskara chitta, subconscious mind is what has to be adjusted. So it's not just the conscious mind which is our first thought.
I've never had, you know, when people ask me about meditation they say: I sit to meditate and I can't control my thoughts. What do I do? That's a standard question, when they, someone asks, someone talks to me about meditation they almost always say that. They don't say anything else. Say: I can't control my thoughts. I want to meditate but I can't control my thoughts. No one ever said: How do I adjust my subconscious mind? My samskaras are causing some blockage in my meditation. You know, no one's ever said that. So this talks about that.
"I liken the subconscious mind to a basement. Those of you who have lived in the same house for a number of years have observed the following: as life progresses in the home, old things make way for the new, and the old things invariably are put into the basement..."
And in Hawaii they're put in the garage,right; we don't have a basement. So and usually the garage is open so you can see how much one is accumulating. We were accumulating in our shilpi house. We are accumulating computer boxes and it just looks so bad we finally put a door on it, keep our accumulation private.
"The basement is likened to the subconscious mind; the main floor, to the conscious mind. If one is putting too many things too fast into the basement and is too busy enjoying the new things passing through the conscious mind into the subconscious basement, there is no time to keep the basement in order. Suppose there is an earthquake, an emotional upheaval in life, and the entire house shakes. The lamp shades of the big lamps get mixed up with the shades of the small ones; the pillows of the old sofa get mixed up with the pillows of the armchairs. Should we enter the basement, it may take us several hours to find the articles we're looking for. That is the subconscious mind. It gets all mixed up if we do not look into ourselves constantly and put our subconscious basement in order. "
So that's the practice. We need to reflect to keep the subconscious mind straight. In other words, particularly when emotional events happen in our life and things don't go quite like we wanted them to, we need to make sure we resolved all of that and it's not just bouncing around in an unresolved manner.
"Our subconscious basement is created first through association with our immediate friends and family and the interrelated strains, tensions, misunderstandings, joys, pleasures, happy memories and sorrows. In a lesser degree it is created in the outside world through the people to whom we have become attached. These attachments are reflections of what is already in the subconscious basement. In other words, we bring out of these people qualities similar to the qualities in our own subconscious. However, if every day at a certain time we meditate, go down into that basement and put a few things in order, pretty soon our basement is orderly and clean. We begin to understand the subconscious, seeing it as transparent, and we have no attachment to anything in it. We are not holding onto any old hates, fears or ancient misunderstandings within ourselves.
"When we are not harboring negative attachments to anything that happened twenty or thirty years ago, thus creating tensions in our body and confusion in our mind, the subconscious becomes a powerhouse. The superconscious energies flood easily through you, bringing into your life an abundance of creativity, intuition, perception and bliss. The subconscious, in this pure state, is of great benefit to you both inwardly and outwardly when properly programmed."
In other words it becomes sub-superconscious. That's what Gurudeva's getting at without saying it.
We are not...I'll read this sentence again. "...we are not harboring negative attachments to anything that happened twenty or thirty years ago."
So when we were at the temple, one of the events was a, had some personal testimony in it. And a gentleman said he regretted very much that he hadn't done something for his aunt when she passed away. So he had this regret; this really bothered him. So there's a lack of understanding there. I didn't have a chance to stick it in one of my talks. I gave seven talks there though they were all pretty short. But what I would have said is: Events of the past that aren't fully resolved will come around in the present. We have another chance. It won't be the same person necessarily. But it'll be the same situation. The classical example I usually give is as a teenager we were typically rebellious and gave our parents a bad time. We may feel bad about that now in the present. Say: I really shouldn't have treated my parents that way. So life, because we feel that way, life will bring to us a situation where some individuals who were age wise the same difference approximately as your parents were, will come into your life and you have an opportunity to help them.
But if you're so focused on the past you won't see the present. So, we have to let go of the feeling that, well we did this in the past; it's terrible. And let it go and say: Well, that situation comes around again I'm going to handle it this way. So, we just let go of the past and have a plan for handling it if it comes to us in the future. So that's the idea.
Another aspect of this statement is negative attachments. Usually, when we think of attachment... I brought up the subject: What are you attached to? I'm attached to coffee in the morning, I'm attached to rice for lunch, I'm attached to this. You think of positive things. Right? You would think of situations, what you enjoy in life. Pleasurable experiences that would be what would come to your mind as your attachments. But, what Gurudeva's saying is when we are not harboring negative attachments. We're not talking about positive attachments which is the other form of attachments and it's the one we normally think of. He's talking about negative attachments.
So, attachments are of two kinds, positive and negative. And the negative ones we have to be more observant of. In other words, the positive ones are the pleasurable ones, shall we say, are more obvious. The negative ones are more subtle. Therefore we have to look for them. It's this kind of thing where we regret what we did twenty years ago and it still bothers us. We're attached to something or we had a very painful experience, people treated us a certain way. Or we had an embarrassing lecture we gave, it didn't work out and we still think about it. You know, these are the painful experiences in our life which we think about on a regular basis and there's no reason to be thinking about them. Nobody said: You remember when? You know, there's no reason to be think about it popping up in our own mind. Those are our negative attachments and Gurudeva gives us tools such as the vasana daha tantra for getting rid of them.
And Patanjali has the same dual definition of attachment. So that's what I thought I'd end with. We have to stick it in the perspective. It's called kleshas. Remember the kleshas? Five forms of wrong cognition. So, wrong cognition is the concept that Gurudeva explains as, in Cognizantability, he says: "The seed of desire is a false concept." Any wrong cognition. Wrong cognition means a false concept. So, the seed of desire is a false concept in relationship to corresponding objects. It's that idea that if I have a Mercedes I'll be rich and famous cause that's what the person in the add looked like. He was rich and famous and all I have to do to be rich and famous is buy a Mercedes. It's that easy.
So, that's a false concept. So something has gotten into our mind, in that case through advertising. That's what advertising is trying to do. Makes you feel, you know, you have to have an Apple watch or you just, you know, you're not going to be happy. So, advertising tries to put false concepts in your mind. So, that's wrong cognition.
So there's five forms: [Patanjali Yoga Sutras, Verses II.4-II.9]
"The kleshas are ignorance, identification with I-am-ness, attraction, aversion and clinging to life.
"Ignorance is the field where the other kleshas germinate, whether dormant, attenuated, intercepted or activated."
Next one explains it.
"Ignorance is seeing that which is impermanent, impure, sorrowful or not self as permanent, pure, joyful and as self."
As I mentioned before when I explained this: Normally ignorance means you don't know something. You get a new computer. You're ignorant of how to work it until you read the manual. So that's normally what ignorance means. I don't know; I'm ignorant about it.
Well in this case ignorance means you're miss-perceiving.You're miss-perceiving the world. You're seeing it as permanent, pure, joyful and as self when actually it's impermanent, impure, sorrowful or not self.
"I-am-ness is the identification as it where of the powers of vision and visioner."
That means we think we're a person.
"Attraction is that which rests on pleasant experiences."
So that's one kind of attachment.
"Aversion is that which rests on sorrowful experiences."
So that's the other kind of attachment we need to get rid of.
"Clinging to life, flowing along by its own momentum, is rooted thus even in sages."
So that's the idea of: I don't want to be omnipresent, I want to be finite. We're clinging to life as we know it. I don't want to be all-knowing, I want to be just knowing a little bit. I don't want to be everyone in the world, I just want to be myself. We're clinging to life as we know it which is natural. I've had some people say: Well I don't want to merge into Siva. I don't want vishvagrasa. They're clinging to life as they know it. They're not looking at it from Siva's point of view.
So it's very simple to overcome that one. All you have to do is figure out, well what is Siva's point of view in this matter? So from Siva's point of view Siva's always everyone and everything. So if you can adjust to Siva's point of view then you overcome clinging to life as we know it.
Thank you very much.