Through this article, I intend to show that the awakening of Kundalini and all higher yogic achievements are and must be connected to purely mental disciplines, not only to the practice of pranayama, mudras, etc.
We often wonder why some people advance spiritually faster than others. Why one Nitay Charan gets results in just 3 years of Kriya Yoga, and others can not the same in 20 or 25 years? If you search with depth, you will find that it was not because Nitay Charan practiced 1000 kriyas daily, or something similar to this.
You will find that all the prominent personalities of the Hindu mysticism – since Rishis to the more modern Gurus as Lahiri Mahsaya – had from birth, a different attitude towards the world, beings and things. This attitude or Bhava is not necessarily devotional or product of an intense love of God. The Bhava to which I refer has a completely different nature than we imagine to be.
Ādi Śaṅkarācārya gives us a hint about what this bhava. Sankara defines the fundamental tenet of Advaita Vedanta thus:
Brahma satyaṃ jagat mithyā / jīvo brahmaiva nāparah
“Brahman – the absolute existence, knowledge and bliss – is real. The universe is not real. Brahman and Atman (man’s inner Self) are one”
When Śaṅkarācārya summarizes the Advaita doctrine in these simple statements, he is, in fact, teaching the two complementary paths that constitute the Advaita-Sadhana (the method and spiritual discipline Advaita). The first is the one known as Nididhyasana, which is the meditation on the oneness of Atman and Brahman. The second is the mental discipline to consider everything that is not the Atman-Brahman as non-real, or Maya.
These two disciplines complement each other and help each other. When you meditate in Atman, increases their awareness of the unreality of the world, and this awareness, in turn, increases their interiorization in the Atman. When these two disciplines are not worked together, there will certainly obstacles in the spiritual life of the practitioner.
Here is the key to success of the Mahatmas. All of them were born with the awareness of the unreality of the world. It is innate in them an understanding of the precariousness of the human condition. The great yogis do not need to make laborious reflections on the impermanence of the world. So when they start practicing the other discipline (Nididhyasana or Kriya Yoga), the goal is reached very quickly.
What is the connection between this attitude (Bhava) and the perfections of Yoga? The awareness that the world (the world of people, of their conditioned minds, the world produced by ignorance) is really Maya, awake Viveka (discrimination), Vairagya (inner renunciation), Sama (serenity), Dama (self-control) and all those other virtues described by Vedanta.
But, the method of cultivating the awareness that “the world is Maya” must have a systematic, methodical and impersonal character; very different from emotional, impulsive and irrational approach. This should be a “spiritual exercise” to be done at all times of life, and daily.
In Yogic terms, this awareness produces Pratyahara (withdrawal of senses), and yogic achievements such as Dharana and Dhyana are produced spontaneously. In fact, one whose awareness of the unreality of the world part of a systematic reflection on the profound nature of things, enters a process of Laya (dissolution) of the conditioned states of mind. This process of Laya (dissolution) produces the entrance of Prana in Sushumna, and the spine and the brain is flooded with Divine intoxication. Indeed, Kevala Kumbhaka is achieved much more easily.
However, this Kevala Kumbhaka not be like those produced artificially by an exaggerated focus on Bhrumadhya, or through some accidental effect of Kriya Yoga. The real Kevala Kumbhaka consists of remain in Atman, like the state of the Supreme Brahman, beyond creation, or at the time of the great dissolution (Pralaya) of the universe.
Peace, Joy and Blessings!
Author: Yogi Professor Ramdas Prabhuji, Disciple of Shri Maheshwari Prasad Dubeyji in Shri Panchanan Lineage of Lahiri Mahasaya Kriya Yoga.
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