“Stop seeking” is a piece of very common advice we hear often in spiritual circles these days. It would be great if that were to happen by merely deciding to be so. Unfortunately, such “non-seeking ness” doesn’t sustain for long.
The mind can never stop moving, pondering and desiring. It is not in its nature to stay still by mere mental understanding or reasoning. After all, it is the mind telling itself to do something that’s contrary to its own nature.
The seeking, therefore, will continue as long as something from beneath or prior to the mind doesn’t captivate it or hold it to itself. Something more powerful than the mind alone can manage to tie the mind down into non-seeking.
The closest one can arrive into non-seeking state is by falling in Love. When one is in Love with another person, most problems simply disappear and energies begin to find a new sense of aliveness and joy within. Love is an extremely potent form of feeling/sensation that can often neutralize the anxieties, fear, disturbances, challenges, etc. that the mundane world brings forth.
It is beautiful to be in Love and temporarily all problems appear to dissolve or drown in the presence or thought of the lover. But the downside is eventually the mind kicks in again by creating a world of fantasy and expectations. Unmet expectations lead to agitation and eventually a fall out of romantic love itself. This is unfortunately often the case.
Hence the Yogis suggested we find the joy we seek within. They pointed out that a sweet nectar-like honey pot ever flows within us and through meditation, we can drink that divine juice which will finally silence the mind.
They asked us to learn from bees. Bees don’t hover or circle around sugar. Sugar is sweet but it is not honey. Once the bee finds the honey, it will stick to it and its entire world will revolve around the honey pot.
What is that honey pot within you? It is Soma. Soma means nectar. A liquid of intoxicating bliss and joy that manages to captivate the mind and hold it steady like a bee to honey. Through soma, a yogi is able to maintain constant awareness without the interference of thought, much like the bee is able to maintain a constant connection with honey. Nothing can divert a bee’s attention away from the honey pot. Similarly, the inner intoxication brought by Soma stills the movement of the ever unsteady mind and emotions.
How are we to access the Soma?
Soma is pouring at all times from within our brains and into our whole existence but we may still miss it. Why is that so?
Sometimes it could be raining so heavily but if the mouth of a vessel is kept upside down, it won’t be able to capture even a single drop inside. It’s the same with Soma. The mouth of our vessel (attention) is often directed away from where the Some and bliss pours from within.
So what is that centre within us from where such bliss, such joy ever flows?
It is the pineal gland also called the third eye. The pineal gland is a pine cone shaped gland similar to the size of a rice grain, and is accessed through meditation on our third eye (the space between the eyebrows).
When we stimulate the pineal gland through third eye meditation, it releases soma in the form of various secretions. Soma is not one, but a collection of various secretions and chemicals. The pineal gland can, therefore, be compared to be a beehive which contains the Soma honey and can release it as and when desired as per the Yogi through various secretions and chemicals.
What are the chemicals released by the Pineal gland?
Serotonin: neuroscientists say that the secretions of the pineal gland control and moderate one’s moods and experiences. If you have a very stable and sufficient pineal secretion, having a pleasant mood within yourself is not a problem. Serotonin is the “feel good” chemical produced in our body. It provides energy, alertness, and clarity to a person. Often when a person is depressed or low, it is due to a lack of serotonin in the brain.
Melatonin: melatonin secretion by the pineal gland of the brain plays a pivotal role in the control of circadian rhythms thereby regulating sleep. The pineal gland is made up primarily of secretory cells called pinealocytes, which secrete melatonin at varying rates throughout our 24-hour cycle. The highest rates of melatonin secretion occur in the middle of the night; they begin to decrease as it gets closer to dawn. This schedule of melatonin release is maintained based on information about the amount of light in the environment that the pineal gland receives from the retina. The retina sends this information to a nucleus in the hypothalamus called the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), and from there it takes a convoluted path to the pineal gland. The significance of melatonin in maintaining circadian rhythms, however, and the pineal gland’s role in producing it, suggest that the pineal gland is an essential structure for the health of the central nervous system.
DMT : the pineal gland has been also attributed to produce and release another mystical psychedelic compound called “DMT” (Dimethyltryptamine).
According to Dr Rick Strassman M.D, the pineal gland contained all the enzymes and building blocks to make DMT. The pineal gland DMT is also called as metatonin. DMT produces visions of extraordinary nature like light, tunnels, OBE experiences, near-death experiences, buzzing sounds, interaction with and visions of higher intelligent beings etc.
My own experience (in addition to the above), was exploding white light whereby my vision transformed and I could perceive the world to be a form of 3 D illusion like a holographic movie or images within space. This experience absolutely assured me that the world had no real substance or existence apart from the reality that all is held in a blissful empty space. DMT is similar to LSD except that DMT is natural, organic while LSD is a synthetic drug and of course more complex. Yogis can easily induce this chemical by simply focusing on the third eye stimulating the pineal gland.
Oxytocin: on the stimulation of the pineal gland, we may experience the release of another molecule called Oxytocin. Its referred to as the LOVE molecule. This is the chemical that the brain releases when we fall in love.
Soma is not a poetic expression or a romantic idea but an actual substance with chemical properties. This is now being scientifically proven through research.
My experience : when Soma is released in meditation (but awareness of the physical body is still present), then it is released as these chemicals (serotonin, melatonin, DMT and oxytocin).
The Yogi over time and with regular practice can regulate and modulate these secretions as per his/her will resulting in the altered state of consciousness as mentioned by the neuroscientists. Kechari mudra, in my opinion (though not a prerequisite), facilitates the partaking of Soma immensely.
Also when deeper absorptions happen in one’s meditation (when the awareness of physical bodily existence is not present), the effect of these chemicals becomes 1000 times more profound and powerful. One cant call it a secretion or chemical anymore. No words can describe what happens to a Yogi in that state.
There is no Yogi left. The world becomes Soma.
It is scientific and those who are willing to explore this should work on the third eye under the guidance of a Guru/teacher who has enough experience and knowledge about the functioning of the Pineal gland.
~ Rajiv Kapur