Kriyā Yoga is a specific technique of meditation which aims to direct the prāṇa into the central nerve, also known as suṣumnā nāḍi. The ancient lineages of Naths, the Saivism of Kashmir and Siddhar of Tamilnadu were well acquainted with the technique of “Sushumna breath” but it was Sri Lahiri Mahasaya who took over the task of presenting, in an accessible way to all, this technique in its true identity and its essential structures.
Since ancient times, the ṛṣis of India research the relationship between the subtle body and spirituality. Just as in nature the straight lines are extremely rare, in the subtle body almost no prāṇa movement is just right. Of all the thousands of nadis suṣumnā does not arc nor is it rounded, which reveals its unusual and superhuman nature.
The divine and transcendental nature of suṣumnā is confirmed by the fact that the prāṇa only becomes active in this nerve when one is engaged in spiritual activities like meditation and prayer. Recognizing the close relationship between the suṣumnā activity and spirituality, Sri Lahiri Mahasaya sheds light on the intricate labyrinths of philosophy and practice of the attempts of man to reach spiritual realization or Ānanda (bliss).
For Sri Lahiri Mahasaya, the central nerve of suṣumnā – that is contained in every living creature – was the only true spiritual path, the secret of the bolder spiritual achievements of the soul and of his admirable mystical ascensions. By diving constantly in the inner dynamism of the ” suṣumnā breath”, the kriyavan goes through several stages of growth until the prāṇa flow become immediate predisposition to the ineffable kevala kumbhaka, that is, when prāṇa flows inside the suṣumnā nāḍi without taking any air in from the outside.
When the awareness and prāṇa flow through the suṣumnā, the mind experiences peace and bliss. Manas begins to experience Cidākāśa – the inner space – and becomes one with it (Kaivalya). This is the first stage of Samadhi. A Divine intoxication happens in the spine and brain. The asana posture becomes firm and khecarī mudrā can really become stable. Aum or Bindu Nada is perceived. The 6 cakras in suṣumnā start appearing.
The flow of prāṇa in suṣumnā raises several visions of Cidākāśa – a bedroom, a cave, a lounge, a tunnel, the sky, bhramara-guha, etc. (Please, read http://lahirimahasayakriyayoga.org/ajna-chakra-and-superconsciousness/), Kūṭaṣtha (the light of Pure Consciousness), animals (elephant in the muladhara, the alligator in svadhisthana, and so on) and various Devas and Devis.
It is precisely within Cidākāśa – in the inner space of ājñā cakra – that the fascinating journey into the suṣumnā culminates. This is where the kriyavan experience Bindu Nada (point of sound at the heart of the ājñā). In the beginning, the internal sounds are of a wide variety, and are isolated experiences. But when it progresses in practice, the sound becomes increasingly more subtle. A sound vibration is felt initially in the passage of the suṣumnā, and then the clear sound is heard in the Bindu Nada. The Om sound you hear is long, continuous, uniform, captivating and attracts the bee of mind like nectar. By merging the mind with Bindu Nada, Paravastha is attained.
The presence of prāṇa in suṣumnā is responsible for the brilliant vision of Kūṭaṣtha. In the Cidākāśa state, if attention is fixed on bhrumadhya or in the space that is seen in the inner eyelids before the eyes, the Light becomes visible to you. The reports describing how this Light appears are innumerable. Sometimes the Cidākāśa – such as a cloudless sky, a bright chamber, etc – appears illuminated and this is also an experience of Kūṭaṣtha. In the beginning, the experiences with Jyoti are very sporadic and short-duration. Try to witness Kūṭaṣtha vision continually regardless of whether it continues or disappears. By merging the mind with Kūṭaṣtha, another degree or quality of Samadhi is attained.
The union of the mind with the inner Light (Kūṭaṣtha) and Sound (Nada) which occurs in the dimension of the Cidākāśa, it is the crowning glory of Kriyā Yoga. The intelligent kriyavan should always meditate on your Ātman inside the hidden chamber of Cidākāśa, and also try to get the union of the self with the Light and Sound. Because only when Sat (Being) and Cid (consciousness) are joined, the bliss of Nirvikalpa Samadhi is attained. So Cidākāśa becomes Hṛdayākāśa, the space of heart center where the kriyavan can feel oneness with Brahman within oneself (ātman) – “I am Spirit”, aham brahmasmi – in which there is not the slightest trace of duality, and the realization (Siddhi) is complete.
Much blessings, peace and bliss!
Author: Yogi Professor Ramdas Prabhuji, Disciple of Shri Maheshwari Prasad Dubeyji in Shri Panchanan Lineage of Lahiri Mahasaya Kriya Yoga.