2 Profound Truths to a Faster and Deeper Awakening

2 Profound Truths to a Faster and Deeper Awakening

Do NOT Believe the Mind

Even The I-Amness is False



These two truthes will help you awaken from this dream and then help you to deepen your awakening. Let us explore them now. 

Do NOT Believe the Mind


The Mind’s nature is to swing between extreme optimism and extreme pessimism. It lacks the basic clarity to give you the real truth. So what you are seeing through the instrument of the mind is mostly your own projection and that is why you cannot trust the mind. You have to learn to disbelieve the mind. It is a learning process, and it is not easy.

You trust and believe in the mind and do not look at it with suspicion at all; you do not doubt it. You believe your beingness, your existence, is dependent on your mind because that is what you have been taught. The mind is like an unqualified employee that you have entrusted to be the head of your organization without evaluating whether it can be trusted, or not trusted.

And what happens when you trust an unqualified employee to be the head of your organization? Chaos! Clarity is the last thing that will happen.

You have so much invested in your organization… a big investment! And what is the goal of your investment? AWAKENING. And what does the mind do? It takes you away from it… not because it doesn’t have great abilities… but because it is confused. And that is why you need to keep watching the mind and to seriously doubt it. Do not believe what it says. 

What you need to do is get to know your mind and develop a relationship with it. Do not take it at ‘face value’… get to know it better, more closely.

As you know, the world is full of problems, all kinds of problems. The world is always going to have problems for you to think about. But what is at the origin of these problems? The mind. 

What is at the origin of the world? The mind. 

What creates this world and its problems? The mind

So, if you were to discover someday and somehow that the mind itself is unreal, could your problems or the world then be real? If the basic instrument that is at the origination of your world… in which you experience so many problems… is itself unreal, then how can you take your problems seriously?

You have taken your problems far too seriously because an unqualified employee has told you the problems are too many. Your organization’s balance sheet has more liabilities than assets! So you need to check constantly, check what your mind (your unqualified employee) is telling you, and keep checking it. Is what it is telling you reality? Or is it trying to deceive you? 

The mind is like a projector; it projects the images on the screen.

Your problems are also images; your perceptions are images. 

The mind is projecting these images, just like a movie projector projects images onto a screen… and without the projector, there is nothing there!

You will experience many situations in your life where you will take a position based on what you are identified with. You will read a newspaper or watch TV and the mind will try and take a position but you must deny the mind its position.

You must deny the mind any position where it tries to make you uncomfortable and that is why I tell you, do not believe the mind.

Even with very advanced seekers the mind tries to seep in, so it is important to understand how the mind works, to keep watching it, and not believe what it is telling you. 

Do not try to stop the thoughts or control them; just do not get too involved with your mind.

Know the nature of the mind and let it go on and do not engage with it. Learn to ignore it, learn to move out of your head. When you move out of your head, wherever you go, it is going to be ‘no mind’ and you will be near the Truth. Do not be in your head.

From time-to-time just pull yourself out of your head and think about how the mind deceives you into believing your reality. Have you noticed the mind at night? When you go to sleep, you dream something, and in that dream you have become somebody else. Or you go into another reality, and in that reality, in that moment, the mind has played with you again, and deceived you into another play, and you get carried away into it. That is, if you remember your dreams. For once you start to awaken, you begin to have very vivid dreams. You become nearer to your dreams. You become aware of your dreams and can then watch more closely how the mind is playing these tricks on you because the reality is different there. In some dreams, you will get carried away into that reality; in others, as you more deeply awaken, you will know in that dream that you are dreaming. So your reality keeps changing. 

And then you wake up in the morning, and again you have a dream reality. We call this the ‘waking state’, which is basically a dream state, nothing else. So your reality has again changed. Then you go back to sleep and dream another reality and become identified with that reality. And then the mind goes into deep sleep and becomes submerged and is no longer there. And when the mind is no longer there, the world is no longer there, and when the world is no longer there, there is no more dream… absolutely zero… nothing. Again your reality has changed. From the waking-dream to the dream-dream to no-dream. Absolutely zero.

So this instrument you have put your faith in is very faulty; it is changing all the time. That is why your world is changing all the time, why your feelings are changing all the time, and why your perceptions are changing all the time. It is because the instrument is changing all the time.

So you cannot trust the mind. Do not believe the mind. When you reach the stage where you deeply realize this truth, not just intellectually, but in the core of your Being deeply realize this truth, then everything becomes entertainment. EVERYTHING.

You may still have pain, but you will not be broken.

You will still have disappointments, but you will not be a failure.

Even in your pain or disappointments, you will find it very entertaining.

In the middle of a problem created by the mind, you will suddenly start laughing and wonder how you ever got trapped into believing ‘this’. And you will understand this as you start going deeper and deeper. 

Even the I Am-ness is False


All the Masters say hold on to your I AM-ness… but now I am telling you… even your “I AM-ness” is false.

As Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj has said, I AM-ness is an illusion, it is not real. This is the ultimate Truth.

However… while I AM-ness is false… it is important to understand that…

                                “AM-ness” is not false, it is real.

Do you know (see) the difference between the two?

The first one has “I” at the beginning, and anything that has “I” in it has to be false, a fraud, a deceiver.

So I AM-ness is completely illusionary, and this point needs to be made clear:

 “I AM-ness” is false.  Only “AM-ness” is real.

Whenever you attach “I”, “me”, or “mine” to something it becomes impure. And this seeps into everything… even with your AM-ness you attach “my”… “I”.

Everything is made egoic — see how you have even transformed “AM-ness” into “I AM-ness”? It leaves you because it is false; it is a fraud. It is very important to understand this difference.

Another important point to understand is how you try to contain the I AM-ness as an experience in your body.

Have you thought about this? How the minute you think about I AM-ness you close your eyes and start to feel the I AM-ness as if the I AM-ness is confined within your body. When you meditate on the I AM-ness, your Beingness, you close your eyes to feel your I AM-ness, your Beingness. Is your I AM-ness inside your body? Or is it the substratum?

So why do you have this feeling that the I AM-ness is within you? Because you have this habit, this tendency, of holding everything to yourself.


So you have two problems with respect to your I AM-ness:

The first is related to feeling.

The second is that you are trying to contain it within your body 
as if it is a
body-mind experience. 


I AM-ness is not a feeling, or confined to a particular feeling. But you have restricted it, confined it within certain parameters and said that this is what it is…

“Oh, peace is I AM-ness”… Oh, joy is I AM-ness”… Oh, bliss is I AM-ness”. 

So you have two problems with respect to your I AM-ness:

Thfirst is related to feeling. 

The second is that you are trying to contain it within your body as if it is a body-mind experience.

And then, if you do not feel the same I AM-ness or Shakti, you start to wonder what went wrong, why you no longer feel that way… “Why has my Bliss dropped?”, etc., because you are always trying to compare the I AM-ness of today with the I AM-ness of the past.

So, predominantly, I AM-ness is concerned with feeling. 

BUT… AM-ness is not concerned with a particular feeling. It could be much more than what you are feeling at this particular moment. And the moment you compare it to an old experience of bliss or joy or whatever, you have polluted it, become attached to it, and turned it into “I AM-ness”.

AM-ness can be any feeling. Even depression can be AM-ness. And sometimes, AM-ness can be there to teach you something. 

For people who are far too vested in “I AM-ness” being a particular feeling, the AM-ness can come to teach them the lesson of not being too attached to this feeling. So even depression can be AM-ness, and you need to wait for it to unfold in the Totality.

Do not let the mind come back and try to make stories out of it. Stay there, just let it be, whatever it is. Do not compare it with the past. Do not let the mind go there because that is the past, that is possessiveness, that is attachment.

So, now you understand that AM-ness is not confined to a particular feeling, or to your body. That whatever feelings arise within you, or outside of you, whatever you feel, it is all AM-ness.

BUT… how then do you learn to distinguish the difference between “I AM-ness” and “AM-ness”? The only way to know this is to understand that AM-ness does not belong to you. This is an important point…

AM-ness is not yours, it is not your private property… AM-ness is given to you… it is GRACE.

You cannot possess AM-ness. The moment you try to possess AM-ness it becomes polluted and becomes I AM-ness… and then it leaves you. AM-ness can leave you because AM-ness is not yours in the first place! It is a blessing, a gift to you. 

You have to complete the Circle of Completion… full Totality… and for that AM-ness is given to you.

So always remember that AM-ness is a gift given to you. It is not yours; you cannot claim it. 

The moment you say “I” AM-ness you have claimed it and moved into possessing it and attaching to it, and then it will fall. And then it can also leave.

If AM-ness was yours or mine for the taking, then why does it leave us when we die? It leaves us, it is finished, it is gone. So do not attach to It. 

It is a gift given to you. Always remember this. And when you do remember that it is a gift, it is Grace that is bestowed onto you, then you have dropped control over your I AM-ness and how it should make you feel. You accept that whatever Consciousness wants you to feel, you will feel. And then a miracle takes place… AM-ness never leaves you. Never. 

Your desirelessness and surrender were important components you had missed. 

Whenever you do any meditation on your I AM-ness, or on your breath, or on anything, you can have a Samadhi experience, you can control your life-force and learn control of many things, but your effort only teaches you control, it cannot give you Grace. 

Now effort can help lead you to Grace, I am not disputing that, but effort alone can not lead you to Grace.

This is why it is important for you to combine effort and surrender together to know AM-ness. 

So if your “I AM-ness” has gone… let it go; if your “AM-ness” has gone, let it go. This is teaching you something. So do not restrict your I AM-ness to your body. It is not just within your body — though it feels like it is within your body and can be accessed through your body. It is also outside… it is also in the other… it is also in the plants and in the animals… it is EVERYWHERE.

Everything is contained in the AM-ness, not just yourself… EVERYTHING… and every being… and this you cannot realize in the mind, or by practicing I AM-ness.

The important thing is to drop the control over your I AM-ness. Be completely desireless in how your I AM-ness is feeling. Do not worry about it. Open yourself and be receptive to Grace by allowing Consciousness and the Masters to work through you. Allow them. Do not work overtime on your I AM-ness. Rest, let them do the work, drop the control, just leave it. I AM-ness is not in your control. It appears from Grace, and disappears into Grace… it is not in your control.

So stop expecting what will happen… how your I Am-ness will take place, how your AM-ness will behave, what it is, how consistent it is, how inconsistent it is. Do not think like this.

The more you become desireless about it, no matter what it is, the stronger your AM-ness will become, and the more you will be able to feel Grace in your life.

You will, of course, have to put effort in, for effort is part of Grace. But… if you only put effort in, and do not become desireless, then you may have an awakening experience, but you will be humbled in life. This has happened to many Gurus. So beware of this. 


“I Am-ness” is an idea, it is a concept… pure “AM-ness” is not.

I AM-ness is your attachment to AM-ness.

AM-ness cannot be attached to you.

Remember this important difference and open yourself to Grace.


Be receptive, do your work and your sadhana in your most humble way, and leave the ‘fruits’ to how God wants it to be… however Consciousness wants it to be. Please understand this.

It is written that all the great scriptures in the world are false… your birth and the elements are also false… everything is false… and so is your I AM-ness. It is also false. Do not be deceived by it.

Just be involved with your work, as you are doing, and leave the fruits to Consciousness. Open yourself, be receptive to Grace.

If you are meditating on your AM-ness, this is fine. Meditate on Grace as well, allow It to flow.

The trick is this… the more you become desireless, the more the AM-ness will latch on to you. The more you surrender to It, the more it will latch on to you, and you will experience your Self.

So remember, Am-ness is not yours. Anything that you consider ‘yours’ will leave you. This does not mean that you are not going to meditate on your I AM-ness or your Am-ness. Nor does it mean that you will not explore the mind.

Part of what ISIP teaches is attention to the I Am-ness and the mind. That is one part.

The other part is not to have any attachment to it, because whenever you pay attention to something, you are purifying it, you are becoming empty of it.

When you pay attention to your mind, your mind becomes empty of contents.

Anything you pay attention to starts to become purified… all the muck gets thrown out. So paying attention to your mind will remove all the contents from your mind and throw them out.

Paying attention to your I AM-ness will remove the “I”… any contents of the “I-ness”, any attachments, anything that you are holding on to, anything that you identify with. All of that will be removed from your “I-ness”.

But emptying something out does not mean that it will cease to exist just because it has become empty. The only way that the contents can completely and totally leave you… the death of mind, the death of I Am-ness, is through Grace, and only if you can allow yourself to know that they do not belong to you.

If you hold this truth as a deep realization and realize that “it is not mine”, “it is a gift”, the mind and I AM-ness will completely dissolve, they will disintegrate. And the death of mind, and the death of I Am-ness, is the rise of AM-ness, the pure reflection of the Self.

The purest reflection of the Self is AM-ness.

This is the rise of It. It will never leave you and will always be with you. It will transcend life and death… everything. It will become the Self, Itself.

The Song of Kali

The Song of Kali

The Song of Kali

by Rajiv Kapur and Daniel Mills

The I-Am that I am is not just in the background; the I-Am that I am is also in the foreground.

The I-Am that I am in the background is in the form of Durga; the I-Am that I am in the foreground is in the form of Me, Kali. Together we serve Shiva, the Absolute. But know, O Wise Ones, that unlike Durga, the Kundalini, I have no interest in merging with the Absolute; I work independently.

The I-Am that I am in the background in the form of Durga manifests beauty in this world. Golden sunshine, sparkling streams, flowering trees, majestic mountains are all part of My creation. But when I, as Kali, arrive in the foreground, the sun, streams, trees, and mountains may still remain, but their beauty fades and vanishes.

The I-Am that I am in the background has always been given attention; the I-Am that I am in the foreground has always been ignored. That is why I, Kali, come for you with a flashing sword, eyes red in rage, face and breast stained with blood. Your cries of “Mother, Mother” cannot save you. Your Father, Shiva, the Absolute, cannot protect you. No one and no thing can rescue you. Know that for certain, O Children.

The I-Am that I am in the foreground, I, Kali, am brutally fierce with any and all deep relationships you have established with anything, profane or sacred. Your misery, pain, and agony will show you I do not allow any trace of attachment or identification, lofty or lowly, to remain.

To know the Absolute, you need the blessing of the I-Am that I am in the background, but to recognize even a glimmer of Consciousness, you need My blessing.

Impure ones are obsessed with the world; pure ones are obsessed with the I-Am that I am in the background. But in the foreground, I, Kali, spare neither the impure nor the pure.

The I-Am that I am in the background is available as peace, stillness, joy, and bliss. But this is all lost to you when I, Kali, arrive in the foreground. I bestow the blessing of the destruction of your pride; I will burn you in the flames of True Wisdom.

The I-Am that I am in the foreground comes in three forms:

  • One to burn the seeds of habitual tendencies and vasanas.
  • One to dispel the results of past bad karmas.
  • One to deliver suffering, humiliation, and disgrace.

I, Kali, come as temptation, anger, and attachments in my first form,
As loss of health, money, and people you love in my second form,
And finally as old age, prolonged illness, ignominy, and death in my third form.

The I-Am that I am in the foreground, I, Kali, see no difference between Jnani or fool, saint or sinner, spiritual or worldly. When I come, all doors to the I-Am that I am in the background will be closed.

O Proud Ones, remember that the I-Am that I am in the foreground, I, Kali, will destroy whatever pride and faith you have in Me as the I-Am that I am in the background. Indeed I am my own bane and adversary.

The I-Am that I am in the background deludes Jnanis, Yogis, and Bhaktas to believe their ego is gone; the I-Am that I am in the foreground reveals the truth that the ego never leaves you until your skin is burned, bones are crushed, and heart is wrung like a piece of wet cloth. The last shred of ego is never destroyed by any practice, means, path, Guru, or God, but by Me alone.

You cannot please Me through any penance, abidance, meditation, devotion, or good deeds. Nothing can soothe Me. Only the humiliation, disgrace, and helplessness that arrive by your defeat can satisfy Me. O seekers of Truth, know that this alone may calm Me and free you from My wrath.

When tremendous pain and suffering, humiliation and disgrace come, know that it is not a time for seeking or accepting. Both will be impossible. Meet My arrival by surrendering and enduring all, and taking refuge only in My ferociousness and brutality.

The I-Am that I am in the background can witness, accept, dissolve, and direct you towards the Absolute, but when I, Kali, arrive, none of that is possible. Know, O Wise Ones, that at that time, you are Mine.

Some offer Me mantras. Some offer their breath. Some offer various other sacrifices. Yet the One who pleases Me most is the One whose eyes are ever-resting on My feet, and whose heart is one-pointedly devoted to My Lord Shiva, the Absolute.

The Foreground I-Am

The Foreground I-Am

Most teachings, especially New Age, advocate a “romantic idealism” form of spiritual practice, rather than acknowledge the stark reality of the relative plane. But while we are in the body, the world continues to affect us all, including our abidance in SELF. This aspect of reality has repeatedly been ignored, and we have discovered new ways to escape from what stares us in the face. Hence, we are not prepared for calamity when it strikes.

Knowledge is freeing. It may not get rid of the situation we face, but knowledge can prepare us for the many things that can otherwise confuse and create doubts in us as seekers. I am addressing those sincere seekers who, in spite of their unflinching devotion and abidance in SELF, often lose their connection to their Being, or are suffering miserably on the earthly plane. I believe that if these seekers understand the workings of the foreground I-Am, they will stop looking for answers in places from where answers will never come, and hopefully stop criticizing themselves for their inability to fix the situation. Truth, no matter how harsh, is always liberating and healing. 

Many of us have been told about the background I-Am, which I call the “male principle.” All the spiritual practices we have all been doing are concerned solely with strengthening this male principle I-Am. Practices like witnessing, abiding in the “I” or the Self, and actively raising the Kundalini up the spine, are all concerned with the male background I-Am. 

The qualities of the background I-Am are that of stillness, peace, joy and bliss. As we deepen our relationship with this background I-Am, these qualities become more and more profound, and eventually lead us to the Absolute. There, everything dissolves. 

But there is another I-Am, a very important one. It has not been talked about, but presents itself again and again in our lives: The “Foreground I-Am”. 

That foreground I-Am is like Mother Kali who arrives with the noble motive of freeing us from our habitual tendencies (vasanas). But She then intensifies Her attack directly on anything we have latched onto, protected, or guarded. Having our attachments broken can be brutally painful and terrifying for us, for we cannot find any refuge in anything, whether God or the world. Even the Absolute, Shiva, absolutely collapses under Kali’s Lotus feet, and finds no favor. All our identifications, even the slightest, are Her enemy, irrespective of whether they are spiritual or material in nature. In Her eyes, all are the same.

Ego is never really eliminated until Kali visits. Facing Her, the subtlest trace of ego that remains hidden in us is plucked out. Such is Her power and glory. 

As I sat pondering Kali’s immense power, beauty, and terrifying form, the Truth about Her came to me as verses collected into the Song of Kali. I was fortunate to have Daniel Mills next to me recording them as they flowed through me. He helped me choose the verses, edited them, and offered his own input as my student, my friend, a teacher to many, and one who has finally awakened and continues to awaken deeply in his heart.

Together we present these verses to all those who feel the need to know the Truth as it is.

As a prelude to the Song of Kali, I share with you all a work by the Bengali poet, Dwijendralal Ray called “Clinging to Your Feet”: 

I lie clinging to your feet,
but you never look at me, Mother.
You’re lost in your own play,
and engrossed in your own emotion.
What is this sport you revel in
across earth, heaven and the underworld?
The entire universe closes its eyes in terror,
and calls out “Mother, Mother!”
while clutching at your feet.
In your hands, Kali, you hold
the world’s final destruction.
Under your feet
even the great Shiva
lies unconscious.
Wild laughter issues from your mouth
and streams of blood flow down your limbs.
Tara*, forgiving one, end our fear!

Pick me up like a baby in your arms.
Come shining like a star,
with a smiling face
and in fair dress, like the dawn
after a pitch-black night!
All these days, O Terrible Kali,
I’ve worshiped only you.
My puja is done, Mother.
Won’t you put down your sword? 

*Tara means star
The Evolution of Human Consciousness

The Evolution of Human Consciousness

The Evolution of Human Consciousness occurs in seven cycles: 

1. The first cycle is acute IDENTIFICATION with the body/mind

The identity we have in terms of our name and form, that we have inherited or acquired in this birth, forms the basis of our identification. The name and form acquired always have a reference to an object, whether it is this body, a person, a relationship, position at the workplace or wealth.

The human existence, therefore, is nothing but a constant interaction/stimulation with these objects which creates a deep bond between us and the objects. We become dependent on them and try to possess them because we become habituated by them. We fall into a trance.

Our loyalty towards these objects is impeccable, but unfortunately the same thing can’t be said about the objects. These objects are always changing around us — our bodies, positions, relationships, wealth, etc. — they are all fleeting and transient.

Most people suffer silently as they have no idea how to deal with a situation where one is constantly deceived by the ever changing objects and situations. This results in insecurity and fear and the drive to possess more and more of these objects. However, such an act only strengthens the hold the objects have on us and we find ourselves getting more and more insecure and fearful.

Dependency on the objects for true happiness can never be accomplished in this world. It will only lead to more delusion. The reason is that the world is an imperfect place and, to seek happiness, one has to first go inwards and stop seeking it outwards. One has to move away from the waves of the mind and dive within the ocean of the soul.

2. The second cycle is the WITNESSING state

Once a being becomes sensitive enough to realize that he is getting repeatedly thrashed, smashed and jolted by the waves of objects, he starts to look for cover within.

It is when a seeker begins to look within, that he begins to witness. He witnesses the coming and going of all thoughts, emotions, objects. Everything is in constant flux and he gains the knowledge that, over time, everything passes. Initially, many things touch his state of witnessing and he gets pulled into a thought, or emotion, or story; but over time they begin to affect him less and less. He is obviously not free from them as yet, but the act of witnessing creates the necessary ‘gap’ between him and the objects whereby he doesn’t get so easily swayed by them. 

3. The third cycle is the recognition of the WITNESSER

The act of witnessing points to the witnesserEvery thought, emotion, story, feeling, points to whom, to what? It points to the witnesser. First there is attention only to objects, then it turns to witnessing, and finally one arrives at the witnesser. One can refer to it as ‘being’, or ‘background self’, or ‘I AM’, or whatever — but one finds himself attending to a background stillness. Even the act of witnessing merges with the witnesser at the background, manifesting as growing silence and peace felt at regular intervals.

4. The fourth cycle is EXPLORING the layers of the witnesser

The witnesser is a labyrinth of various emotions, thoughts, dreams, images, void, suppressed desires — everything is mixed together and one needs to tease out all of this from the witnesser to arrive at pure I AM or being.

Many things hidden below the surface are brought up during the abidance of the witnesser. The witnesser watches these many hidden and suppressed desires and emotions surface, and he teases them out one by one, layer by layer, much like the layers of an onion.

Often a lot of time is spent in dealing with all that arises and falls within the witnesser. This is where the Implosive Self-Inquiry Protocol™ (ISIP) comes into play. Instead of repeatedly watching what is happening with the witnesser, one uses the scientific tool of focusing on the higher centres of the Third Eye (Ajna Chakra) and the Spiritual Heart.

Through the ISIP freeze and release method, all the energies that are being scattered among the various emotions, thoughts, images and states are brought into one place. At the same time, a natural catharsis or healing of the three centres which block the channels for sustained abidance is also undertaken. This serves to bring the life force to the Third Eye, and then to the sahasrar (top of the brain).

5. The fifth cycle is the VOID state

Scientists have discovered that there are ‘default’ neural pathways, or circuits, that determine how we act, think and feel and that our reality, or perception, is based upon these default neural pathways.

What are these default pathways? They are what we have acquired from past births, or tendencies inherited in this birth, but most of these pathways are only in reference to the world. We are completely oblivious of the spiritual neural pathways that can be harnessed and discovered, as a result we use only the default pathways. The value of ISIP to the seeker is that it facilitates opening these spiritual neural pathways in the brain.

Science now knows that there are approximately 100 billion active nerve cells in the brain, and each of these cells can create a new connection (apart from the default pathways) to explore our hidden potential, both material and spiritual.

One of the world’s preeminent psychologists, Robert E. Ornstein, states in The Amazing Brain, Ch. 1, pg. 21:

“There are perhaps about one hundred billion neurons, or nerve cells, in the brain, and in a single human brain the number of possible interconnections between these cells is greater than the number of atoms in the universe.”

Such is our potential, but it remains largely unexplored and underutilized. 

The importance of ISIP is that it triggers, or magnetizes/energizes, the spiritual neural pathways creating connections between the cells of higher spiritual centres leading to different spiritual dimensions/planes and, ultimately, revealing to us our True Nature. 

When the life force collects or gathers at one point between the eyebrows, then it automatically withdraws from the sense organs and the other parts of the body. The withdrawing of the prana (life force) from the senses reveals “Nothingness” or the “Void” state.

It is in this Nothingness, or Void, that the seeker finds solace and respite from the continuous distractions of his senses and external objects. This, however, can be a very ‘dry’ state and can be depressing for many seekers as the senses seem to be numb, giving a lifeless existence.

The seeker, however, soon realizes that the tendencies and distractions are only temporarily submerged, or arrested, and that they arise again in their daily activities. At this stage, the seeker intuits that he has to return to the waking state while embracing his newly accomplished state, and not continue to ‘escape’ through sitting meditation.

6. The sixth cycle is the BURNING state

Having intuited that he needs to work on his tendencies (vasanas) not just in his sitting meditation, but also in his waking state, the seeker carries his Void state there (waking state). He then prefers to face his vasanas/tendencies in the waking state, rather than retiring into his sitting meditation. This is the burning state where a lot of dross and accumulated muck gets burned away and released through the ISIP practice.

7. The seventh cycle is the TURIYA state

Carrying the “burning” state into the sitting meditation reveals the secret nadi (neural pathway) between the sahasrar and the spiritual Heart.

It is not easy to locate this secret pathway, but with the help of the “burning”, and the ISIP freeze and release method, the Amrita nadi is ultimately revealed — where the state of SATCHITANANDA is finally revealed. 

The Essence of Tantra

The Essence of Tantra

Introduction 

I have spoken on many aspects and various practices — from Kriya Yoga to Self-Inquiry techniques… from effort to grace… from the Absolute to the wrath of Kali… from affirming to burning.

The reason is simple. One particular teaching or technique cannot be prescribed to everyone. Each seeker is different — with differing temperaments, inclinations and approaches that suit them in their own unique manner.

So today I am going to talk about Tantra. The term ‘Tantra’ often sends a sense of uncomfortable energy into the Hearts of many seekers, particularly traditional Advaitins and Yogis who, because of a particular mindset, believe that this form of practice is somehow ‘impure’ or ‘unholy’ as compared to Inquiry and Raja Yoga.

Trust me, I know that feeling. And I do not blame them as we often associate Tantra as a playground for free sex. This is a common misconception.

Many of the revered saints of India were Tantra practitioners — Shri Ramakrishna, Aurobindo, Shivananda, and Nityananda.

Adi Shankara himself was not only the most famous Advaitic Guru, but also one of the most important Tantric teachers. His great poem to the Goddess, Soundarya Lahiri (Waves of Beauty), remains perhaps the most important Tantric text that is used for Sri Chakra (also called Sri Yantra) worship.

Tantra 

There are many books on Tantra which describe it in greater detail as so much has been written about it. My purpose is not to go into too much detail from an academic point of view, or go into detailed philosophic interpretations. Instead, I would like to bring out the real essence of real Tantra by presenting the practical aspects through the light of my own personal practice and experience. I am simply writing down my own personal experience here.

Inclusiveness 

Most spiritual paths have a central ideology… system… approach… or way of practice… which forms the basic theme of its teaching.

Raja Yoga — the classical approach based on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali — talks about breath control with some moral and ethical restraints as the main tenet.

While Self-Inquiry (direct path) — through the approach of ‘Neti Neti’ — purely emphasizes sole abidance in the subjective awareness of ‘I’.

Because these approaches have a theme or an ideology, they become fixated and attach some boundaries to themselves. They get trapped inside a box. Both of these approaches consider the world to be an ‘illusion’ and ‘Maya’, and something that one needs to reject and be careful about so that one doesn’t get caught up with the world. One can’t deny that there is an element of escapism in these approaches.

Tantra, on the other hand, has no fixed theme or ideology. It has no problem being inside a box, outside of the box, or even getting rid of the box. That is its beauty. It has the symphony of all paths, and of life itself. It denies nothing.

If I were to give a one word description of Tantra, I would say ‘Inclusiveness’, and end it there.

Tantra includes everything — the practices of Raja Yoga, Bhakti and Inquiry, and the experiences from them. All merge into one. Mantras, yantras, rituals, pranayamas, bhakti, energies, worship of deities, chakras, etc. all form part of Tantra.

It also does not deny this world, the body, the mind, the senses — nor does it deny any form of practice or deny your experience.

For Tantra there is only one rule ‘Experience and Embrace’.

If anything is in your experience, then it is real, and on becoming aware of it, this becomes Tantra.

For Tantra, every experience (human, spiritual, or in any dimension) is valid. There is no room for suppression. No escape from anything.

Tantra is about being fearless, as everything is an expression of the SELF Itself that needs to be embodied to reach real happiness. In spite of Tantra embracing all the paths within itself, there are some remarkable principles that separates it from these paths.

1) The Goal is an Ever Present, Ever Available Companion

Tantra practitioners are not goal oriented, they are Rasa (juice) oriented. These are teachings for those who are lovers of passion, sweetness, wetness, aliveness, spontaneity and beauty. In Advaita or Yoga, the bliss is in attaining a goal — stillness, bliss or joy.

In Tantra, bliss is NOT something that one needs to wait for. It is immediate and never delayed.

They are like honey bees. They seek flowers and find the sweetness of honey in them, collecting them and accumulating them within themselves — ‘the hives of SELF’ — full of juice and sweetness, and then move again looking for the next flower.  So bliss is always their companion.

Similarly, Tantra practitioners — due to the inclusiveness of all paths, practices and teachings, and also of the relationships they develop in the world — find sweetness in everything they connect with. They find their ‘honey’ through the senses — and even beyond the senses.

While in stillness, they are in bliss — and in movement too. So ‘bliss and joy’ is their constant companion. Even in the element of seeking, there is joy. That is the beauty of Tantra.

2) Both Subject and Object are Equally Important

Even though Tantra recognizes the non-dual state of awareness as the final state, it is not obsessed about the SELF alone.

In Tantra the object is as important as the subject — the flower is as important as the hive (the SELF). The Tantra practitioner (the ‘bee’) does not compromise the flower for the hive, for he knows that the hive exists because of the flower, and that the purpose of the flower is to help build the hive. One cannot exist without the other. It believes that being tied down to the subject is no different than being identified with the objects.

An object without the SELF is useless, and the SELF without objects is juiceless. This is the essence of Tantra.

So in Tantra, ecstasy and joy is a constant companion, where both the SELF and the object co-exist together in order to fulfill your Divine destiny of being in joy and bliss.

3) Attached to Neither Subject nor Object

A worldly man attempts to find his ‘centre’ in objects, the wise man in the SELF — but a Tantra practitioner believes in MOVEMENT.

What is most prominent for him is the dance… the swing (movement) from subject to object to subject and so on. Even though both the SELF and object are equally important, the Tantra practitioner is not attached to either of them.

He stays in the middle and moves from one to the other — much like a honey bee moves the honey from the flowers into the hive, stays there for sometime, and then moves again looking for the honey.

The journey is more important than the destination.

He is ruled by aliveness, spontaneity and the joy of travel.

He is the only one who can begin a journey again and again… even after reaching the goal.

It is like a pendulum. Swaying back and forth, and at the end of every swing there is complete stillness. In Tantra you are allowed to halt or pause… but never to stay in one place because the belief is that with momentum, your reach even greater heights.

That is why a Tantra practitioner is the most adaptable of all practitioners. Like a bee, he can be happy alone or together (building and sharing hives of joy with others).

Osho once said: “…Tantra is indulgence with awareness.” (unlike worldly indulgence, to differentiate). I do not know whether this is so, or not. It could be, or it may not be. It depends.

In my experience, the question of ‘indulgence’ becomes quite unimportant in Tantra as ‘indulgence’ would be a position that is taken towards an object.

In Tantra, both the SELF and the object lose significance over Rasa. There could be abstinence, and yet still be Tantra in my opinion because the main focus is not on indulgence, or identification, but on the purpose, the juiciness that is attained.

One could abstain and yet derive the juiciness from the object through Tantra. Thirst has a unique juicy feeling too. This principle holds true in all situations, whether in relationship with your practice, or with the world, or with the SELF.

Real Tantra is not about forgetting the SELF and indulging in objects, 
 or vice versa, but about the juiciness that connects both.

It becomes clear that the Tantra practitioner approaches his relationship with every object as an opportunity to fall back into the SELF, and takes every delight to witness the SELF reflected in his beloved object.

4) The One Object that Halts All Seeking

You have heard about the SELF — where all seeking stops. But have you ever heard about an object that puts an end to all seeking? This is only possible in Tantra. And this is where Tantra meets its own end too.

A question that may arise when I talk about the bees and the relationship they have with flowers is: “Does Tantra suggest that we keep moving from one object to another in search of Rasa (juice), much like the bees move from one flower to another?”

This is why we have so many Masters, so many practices, so many relationships to choose from. But this comes to an end too. Through Grace, you can come across one such practice, one such Master, one such beloved or lover, from whom you can derive such juiciness, such variety, such quality, such flavor, that seeking other objects will become unnecessary.

The Kula Teaching: The Heart’s Secret Teaching states (verse 2.80):

“The followers of the Heart, knowers of the essence, do not consider other religion, just as bees who serve themselves the blossom of the coral tree don’t seek to obtain other flowers.”

When the ‘coral tree’ is known, such intimacy will be formed that it will no longer be possible to maintain a SELF apart from it. That one ‘coral tree’ could be your lover, your wife, your husband, your teacher, or your practice. The walls of separation between the two will be torn down and all will merge as ONE.

There will not be any separate ‘hive of the SELF’, nor the flower… not even the Rasa. There will exist only the blissful buzz of BEEing.

3 Pillars of Vedantic Practice: Shravana, Manana, Nididhyasana

3 Pillars of Vedantic Practice: Shravana, Manana, Nididhyasana

In Vedanta, there is the 3-fold process of Shravana, Manana and Nididhyasana, which leads one to complete Awakening and Realization. They are Shravana, Manana, and Nididyasana. We will discuss each now.

Shravana

 Shravana means hearing — Hearing the Truth!

There are two kinds of hearing… one of this world, which connects and defines our relationship with this world, and one which is beyond this world.

In the first one, our ears, mind and intellect are involved. In the other, our Heart and Being are involved. Most of the hearing and listening that involves the ears, intellect and mind can be described as routine or casual, sometimes interesting or entertaining. But the frequency or the power behind that hearing is low. That’s because whatever we learn or hear in this world will remain in this world. It is designed in such a way as to keep operating in this world and maintaining, facilitating, navigating and sustaining our existence in this world. But the power is limited and not penetrative enough due to the fact that the world and its objects are all changeable, impermanent and destructible.

In contrast, the hearing that involves the Heart and the core of our Beingness is termed Shravana in Vedanta. It is designed to work at a higher frequency and vibration, and designed to keep you operating in higher worlds. It is “Akshara” (immutable, imperishable)—not casual or interesting, but enlightening.

The instrument of Shravana is the Guru. Amongst all relationships, the one between the Guru and shisya is the most intimate, special, and pure because it is related to that part of your existence that is Truth itself. The words of Truth that pour out from the Guru create a shift in the inner space of your Beingness. You will begin to experience these shifts and immediately recognize the Truth that is spoken. By hearing the Truth, you will immediately know and recognize it (unless you have very bad karma that prevents you).

The Guru-shisya relationship is the purest and most unique because the Guru talks only from the right side of the Heart. Sri Ramana often mentioned that the Heart is the place from where both ignorance and wisdom come. In the Bible, it is written that the left side of the Heart is that of a fool and the right side is that of the wise. That’s why Sri Ramana said the Heart is at the right side.

For example, during a love affair, we experience a mixed form of awareness. What this means is that the sensation of love we feel is a mixed awareness of left and right sides of the Heart. The I-AM we feel is the koshas (“sheaths” covering the SELF), and the feeling derived from both the left and right sides—between attachment and real love. At the time of deep love, both these nadis get activated and issues related to them both get rolled onto us. That creates a spell-like situation.

To illustrate, close your eyes and imagine the person you are most intimate with. Now recollect moments of happiness with that person. Now moments that were painful. Notice how both arise from the same place… the LEFT side of the Heart. And now point to the place where you feel the “I”. It is on the RIGHT side. See! So please understand. If you simply follow love, you will eventually be led to pain. But if you follow love without ever forgetting your “I”, you will know love as well as the SELF.

The other point is “authentic” hearing. You must be authentic in hearing, and accountable for real Shravana.

You must be willing to follow and endure all the instructions of the Guru because the mind can easily mislead and trick you.

So be very aware, be open to discussion and correction, and be willing to keep hearing the Truth again and again until you “get it.”

Not everyone has the capacity to hear the Truth. Many begin on the path, stick with it for some time, and then want to move away as they are shown the path. Sometimes what the Guru shows us is very, very painful. But those committed to the path of finding ever-lasting Joy and Happiness will want to stay. Authentic listeners resist the temptations of their mind and ego, and prefer to follow the Guru’s guidance.

There used to be a Guru by the name OSHO. He allowed his students to indulge in their vasanas. My students’ name for me is similar, but with a slight difference. It is OHHO. Every time I watch a vasana arise in my students, I make them aware of it. And every time I do so, I can hear their minds whisper, “ OHHO Guruji, not again!”

I meet resistance and know it is perfectly normal. Those who are steadfast, pure, and really devoted to the path will digest my guidance and recognize the good in it; others will leave. As a Guru, I am not attached to them personally, but to their progress and their higher good. So I am prepared for whatever happens. That’s my job. If I get attached to them and not their higher good, I would fail as a Guru. I also totally understand that it’s not an easy path and that many will want to leave, to fight with their vasanas another day. Depending upon the karmas accumulated in past lives, they may feel totally exhausted and overwhelmed. I can totally sympathize with them. Rare are the ones who will be able to swim through the ocean of vasanas easily.

Again, one has to be authentic in hearing the Truth. Authentic hearing allows the Guru’s words to act like seeds that will sprout in time. The reason is that the Guru operates from the right side of the Heart. That is why one needs to be in touch with a Guru, especially when the vasanas begin to play their role, and one’s habitual tendencies create a sense of deep resistance.

From a yogic point of view, Shravana achieves immediate pratyahara—the turning of life-force inwards towards the SELF.

Manana

“Manana” means contemplating the Truth.

Just hearing the Truth won’t be enough… one has to reflect, ponder, and contemplate the Guru’s words. Most importantly, one has to USE those teachings in one’s life because vasanas are all played out in one’s waking state. REMEMBER this!

You may have to hear the Truth again and again so that it sinks so deeply inside that Maya isn’t able to pull you away from the SELF.
We can say that consistent remembrance of the Guru’s talks, and reading them over and over again is the most important step. Then putting them into practice is the next. The third step is developing discernment and discrimination in utilizing the teachings. Just like how a white swan can separate milk from water, similarly we should be able to separate what is real, necessary, and wanted from an object from what is unreal, unnecessary, and unwanted.

Through repeated hearing, you will be able to absorb the things you need to, and reject the things you don’t. This is Manana. In the example given above, when the subjects are in love with an object (each other), and instead of utilizing that love for a Divine purpose, they get lost in each other, it then becomes simply Bhoga (enjoyment). When the centre of attention diverts from our Divine goal and transfers to the other, then we will eventually experience pain and suffering.

Hearing that every object can create attachment and build more vasanas can wrongly lead us to believe that running away and escaping would be the right thing to do. This is why, perhaps, it appears to us that the Yogis and Jnanis recommended to seekers to stay away from the objects, or reject the world of objects, because then the only object would be the I-AM, SELF-love, without the stickiness or complications that can arise when associated with “others”.

This ‘staying away from objects’ is what is commonly believed and often gets circulated in spiritual books and teachings. This is simply not true.

These Yogis and Jnanis had ashrams and organizations where a lot of vasanas were triggered and where they worked closely with their inner circles to navigate their students through them. We only hear about a part of their teachings. Their real teachings included the close, one-on-one interactions with a student where a lot of vasanas surfaced and were resolved.

The correct approach is not running away or escaping from objects, but absorbing what needs to be absorbed from the objects.

You can’t just run away. You will always find ways to attach to one thing or another.

First Shravana is practiced, and then Manana.

Manana is not immediate as it takes time, faith, and lots of practical experience in your waking state to perfect it.

Most importantly, discipline and maintaining one-pointedness are necessary. These are the most difficult of all because the left and the right side of the Heart both try their best to prevail, and there is a tug of war between them.

But always remind yourself WHAT YOUR DIVINE PURPOSE IS!

If someone (or something) comes into your life and you feel attached to him or her (or whatever object) and lose focus on your sadhana, take time to die to that person or object for a few days. Take enough time and space to burn alone and dive deeper into the SELF. Always REMIND yourself that the objective of the objects is to fall back into the SELF. And one fine day you will perfect the art of Manana.

From the yogic point of view, Manana achieves Dharana—sustained focus by the sadhaka on the Truth. But it requires discipline and devotion.

Nididhyasana

 “Nididhyasana” means living and breathing the Truth.

Nididhyasana is the result of Shravana and Manana. When your hearing becomes authentic, and your contemplation and action become solid, polished and refined, then Nididhyasana arises on its own. It is effortless and Sahaja (spontaneous, natural).

This is where you operate in the full power of the SELF. You feel complete and in the totality of your Being. There are no missing parts of you. Agitation, conflicts and restlessness due to the vasanas are at a minimum, and you move between the human and the Divine dimensions with utmost ease. Here all concepts that you have learned from a Guru will be destroyed… and you will forever swim in That Reality. Here you will have first hand proof of what you truly are. All mental concepts will dissolve and you will find yourself at the SELF. The mind will no longer pose any problems, and the vasanas will not burn you anymore. You will attain complete Freedom.

From a yogic point of view, Nididhyasana achieves Dhyana and Samadhi—which means ‘unwavering abidance’, much like how oil is poured from one container to another.

Please know another important point. The Guru’s Grace is 50%, and the balance is your own Grace. The Guru’s powers are always there to activate the higher centres in you; however, what is also required is your own power.

No true Guru will want to make you dependent on his powers. He wants you to activate your own powers. He doesn’t want to impose, he wants to empower.

Most importantly, it requires your own authenticity and willingness to accept the Shakti from the Guru, and also take steps to build your own power to receive and explore your own Shakti.

If there is ever even a moment of doubt or casualness in your approach, it will prove detrimental to your success. The Guru is always willing to give Shakti, but you should also be capable of receiving it, and then experiencing your own Shakti and power.

Today the Shaktipat I confer on you will be to activate your own Shakti.

It is called the “1-3-5 Rule to Self-Shaktipat”. It will enhance your capacity to listen, to contemplate, and to abide.

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