Meditation

As explained by Bhagwan Sri Sathya Sai Baba

 

The power of spirituality is inexplicable and infinite. The institute or individual that cannot obtain this becomes animal. The power of spirituality can transform an animal into man and man to a divine being. The paths of spirituality have sprung up to lead man from human state to that of divine. Man tries to understand everything. He has been trying to acquire many types of learning. However, he has not yet made an effort to find out his real nature. All learning is naught if it can not help one to realise one's own nature. Knowledge without practical aspect is akin to a lamp in a blind man's hand.

Just as, Narada had skill in 64 types of learning/sciences - 4 Vedas, 6 Sastras, 20 Upangas, Painting, Sculpture, Dance, Music, Literature etc. None could surpass Narada in singing. In spite of such accomplishments Narada could not overcome restlessness. Narada had mastered Gaja Karna and Gokarna which could not be mastered by anyone in the world. Seeking a solution for his restlessness, Narada came to Sanat Kumara. He expressed his restlessness. Sanat Kumara asked Narada about his qualifications. Narada explained that he had learnt everything. Sanat Kumara asked Narada if he had known about his own self. "That alone I have not learnt" said Narada. Sanat Kumara then pointed out that to be the reason for his restlessness.

Today man desires to know about everything that goes on in the world. From the moment he gets up, he desires to know the news from all quarters of the world and does not pay heed to the nuisance coming from within. If he were to understand the principle within him, he could understand the world better. In Andhra region, there is a proverb, "win over the self and win over the village." Unless one saves oneself, one cannot save others. Philosophy and learning can get you food but not liberation. "Therefore, Narada, when you desire to know yourself, you have to awaken a dormant factor within you" said Sanat Kumara. Narasimha Murthy stated that sleep played a chief role in Ramayana. Even in the Ramayana of life, sleep is very important.

Every person has to awaken the Kundalini that is asleep within one. Kundalini, Sanat Kumara taught, should be led in a proper path towards the goal to fulfil one's life. In the Bharat's Yoga Shastras, it has been mentioned that there are 7 types of lotuses in the spinal column helping people to take to right path. They are known as Naadi Mandalas/Chakras. (Nerve centres / disks) Kundalini power starts at Muladhara disk at the beginning of the spinal column. This nerve centre is situated at the place of excretion of faecal matter. It has 4 petals.

Swadhishtana is situated in the urinary excretory point. It has 6 petals. Manipuraka - Naabhi/Navel point has 6 petals. From there to Anahata near heart with 16 petals. Thence to Visuddha the power travels near throat - From there it comes to Agneya situated between the brows. It has two petals. From there it goes to Sahasrara which is situated on the crown of the head. It has 1000 petals.

Muladhara, Swadhishtana, Manipurakam, Anahata, Agneya, Visuddha and Sahasrara are the seven Chakras. Each is at a higher plane than the other. Behind these chakras, on either side of spinal column Ida and Pingala nerves keep throbbing. In the centre of spinal column there is a nerve by the name Sushumna. All these perform their duties in the prescribed manner.

How does one awaken the Kundalini power? All have believed it to be in the form of a dormant serpent near the Muladhara Chakra. Snakes of the world are considered poisonous. The serpent (Kundalini) dormant in man is that of worldly desires. These desires become poison. Worldly snakes eat frogs, rats etc. Kundalini serpent consumes only the life principle of man. To awaken this serpent, one has to control the intake of this life principle. When we hold breath through Yogic practices, the Kundalini power does not get food near Muladhara Chakra. In search of food, it becomes active and continues to come up. During meditation when we deny the food, it travels upwards from Muladhara to Manipuraka, Swadhishtana and comes to throat. Even near the throat food is not available for it. Then it reaches Agneya. Unable to find food even from there, it merges into Sahasrara. Therefore, to awaken the life principle or consciousness from Muladhara and let it merge in Sahasrara has been described as 'liberation' by Vedanta. Dhyana, now-a-days, both in India and abroad has taken various forms. They believe it to be concentration. But both are different. Right from dawn to dusk whatever activities we perform, they are done with concentration. To walk, to eat, to read a book, to write a letter - all need concentration. Concentration is natural for man. Why should are spend/waste time for such concentration by sitting separately. But one has to question the source from which one derives concentration. We have held a book in hand. We can see with our eyes. What has been seen is sent for enquiry to the intelligence/Buddhi. After the enquiry, mind begins to recollect/reflect upon it. It is an 'Indriya' (instrument/sense) that held a book. Again it is another indriya that saw the matter. It is yet again another indriya that reflected over the matter. It is due to the collective effort of all the indriyas that we are able to perceive the matter. Therefore, concentration is below senses. It is meaningless to call concentration which is below senses as meditation. Meditation is beyond senses. There is a border between concentration which is below senses and meditation which is beyond senses known as contemplation. Contemplation is said to be the second stage of intelligence. Intelligence is said to be the essence of Satwa. It can be best illustrated with an example to make it clear to you.

 

Continue to Part 2

 

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