The last newsletter showed just what one has to aim for to attain the higher samadhis.
The early samadhi and the sabakalpi samadhi can be attained by any of the means of discipline one may practice, such as meditation, but one doesn't want to always have to sit cross legged or find a quiet place. One wants to be in samadhi all the time - Nirvikalpi samadhi.
This nirvikalpi samadhi is accompanied by two other forms of samadhi, sampranata samadhi and asampranata samadhi. These last two mean a state of diving into and coming out of samadhi itself. By this we realize that we are not in a full time state of union. For that is called sahaja nirvikalpi samadhi.
What arrests our ability to attain these states is the monkey mind. That incessant chattering of thoughts racing around in our head, and even though we may gain a small insight into the very first samadhi, those monkey thoughts rise again and again to remove us from that blissful state.
These monkey thoughts are driven by habit, desire, conditioning, ideals and beliefs and samskaras. So how do we learn to chuck them out. We don't. We learn to fulfill them, so that the desire for them ceases. Along the way of fulfilling these desires and allowing habits to run unchecked, we begin to see exactly what they are doing to us and to others, and besides, just like eating too much chocolate cake, we for a time, never want to look at cake again.
One may be deceived into thinking that cake will never pass your gullet again, but as time passes, that desire arises again. It is the same for restless activity, the enemy of samadhi. One may think in a period of satiation that samadhi would be in easy reach, but really it is not different from an experience of the hermit in the cave who had renounced love of the flesh, yet on achieving some semblance of internal quietude, has the thought of a beautiful woman rise in to his mind. He may give his head a shake. He may try and suppress this desire, and some even flagellate themselves hoping to drive out these so called evil spirits which afflict them, keeping them from their divine goal, but arise again they will.
No matter what a person does to try and achieve a state of stillness and silence of mind, those nasty samskaras arise again and again. Why is this so? Why are these habitual thoughts so irritating - even when they are not consciously wanted? True, you may arrest them for a short period to experience some sort of mystical experience.
I say mystical experience because so many think what they have achieved is some spiritual experience - or samadhi. They think this because they return to objective reality and recount the wondrous sense of oneness, the music of the spheres, a light show or some tunnel or other they passed through - and also a great feeling of joy and renewed spirit. Many of them you see walking around with a blissful grin on their face. This then is not a bad thing as these are all phases which must be passed through.
What I am trying to do is warn against yet another set of illusions and hallucinations created by that same monkey mind, which has taken the adherent to another level of deception. These Mayic deceptions are very creative, for they are initiated in areas of the mind not yet known to the young yogi, and, when discovered, are thought to be a sign of spiritual ascension. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Any experience remembered cannot be a true experience. The mere fact it can be recounted means that the "ego you" must have still been present in order to have remembered it. This is in no way near what samadhi is. No matter how uplifting your experience is, if you can remember it - that's not it.
Think for a moment, when you deep sleep, there is no memory of that, yet you know you existed for that part of the night - then in dream sleep, because the dream is created out of mind, the first personal pronoun, the ego I, was present, and again when fully awake that same ego I is fully present. It is the deep sleep part that cannot be remembered. We must have experienced it - but we experienced it without the I being present.
Neither the dream nor the awake world are true experiences because we always recount them in relationship to something else. We say about a dream or nightmare, that someone attacked you. That someone was "like" such and such. We cannot say for sure what he was like in reality, as there is no reality, so we have to relate it to something else which we assume everyone else knows -"he was like a devil with bat ears and a long tail."
In the awake world the same holds true. Because nothing is truly real we find when a number of people witness an accident three or four different accounts will be told be the people who were standing right there and witnessed it. "He wore a red shirt." "No it was blue, it was the car that was red." "Uh Huh! His tie was red and the car was green."
Law enforcement have trouble with this kind of thing all the time. - so where is the true experience? Because it is we who project and perceive the world, truth does not exist.
We have all learned to live within the laws of the country we live in. In other words you mustn't murder, nor rape young children or older people for that matter, so I leave out these aspects of the law which we all know, but in all other natural aspects we must learn to fulfill our nature.
If you try and control you will fail in Yoga. If you suppress you will fail. Full access to your natural drives must be given, BUT, and here is the point, you must also practice Yoga alongside giving vent to your desires.
Because the Atman, the real you is trying desperately to have full expression, it will always drive you towards fulfillment if you allow it. What stops this from happening is your dogged holding onto ideals, principles, and your conditioning. These are the very worst of all the mental habits you have. It is these that pit one person against another and one nation against another. We see it in our world today. The communist against the capitalist, the Catholic against the Protestant, the Arab against the Christian, the Pro lifer against the Abortionist. People murder and maim in the name of their ideals and religions. Of course this will always exist, but for the Yogi he must lose these concepts and allow them to drop away.
This happens when you allow the teeter totter of balance to weigh in favor of your Yoga techniques, while at the same time living a functional life to the fullest - giving vent to all your feelings and desires, without suppression and control. Many yogis are afraid to do this. They are afraid of themselves, and fear keeps them from giving full vent to their passions.
It is because Atman wants its expression, that the teeter totter will soon begin to weigh heaviest on the yoga side of your life, while your functional life will just fall away, albeit slowly, nonetheless it will fall away, leaving you free from desire and passion, and now prepared to enter into an unbroken meditation, where no thoughts nor visions will interrupt your unbroken silence.
Each one of you will approach it differently. That is due to fear of being yourself. There are so many natural desires and passions that one would like to express but for the fact that conditioning from parents and religions have designated them to be wrong or sinful.
What a shame. I have met over the years countless numbers of young people who are in a quandary as to how to express their inner natures and feel good and right about themselves, when all the time their conditioning has pronounced what they wish for is wrong. It is okay to be "bad" providing you hurt no other in the process. I have also met many who are so called "bad" yet begin the practice of yoga, and over the years, after wearing out their bad seeds, find it so easy to reach to their inner depths of silence and stillness, without visions and intruding thoughts. Take for example a steam boiler without pressure release valves - it would just burst under the pressure of the steam, yet give that same boiler some outlets and temperature and usage is controlled, but outlet it must have, and so must students of yoga.
Yoga students cannot bury their shut down pressure valves behind yoga and expect success. It can be nothing but failure. We have seen a world wide example of that sort of thing of young monks in the church. Young monks who would have been better out in society having natural affairs with their own age groups, rather than blowing the boiler and "having" to abuse young children. The boiler without valves is uncontrollable and it is not its fault it blows. You have to remember the heat in the human boiler is always there and cannot be shut down. It must be fulfilled. The act of celibacy is totally wrong as are so many other conditioned dogmas.
If a student finds that in living his yoga life alongside a fully functional one, that the functional one wins out so to speak, then he was not ready nor needful of Yoga, and the Atman needs fulfillment through him in his functional life, and in that way he may arrive at stillness and silence without Yoga after all if we said Yoga were the be all to end all we would then be no better than the fanatical Christian who claims that it is only through Jesus that one attains the God head. Utter nonsense.
So yes practice your techniques, all of them you have learned - for in mastering the techniques you have freedom to be abandoned. Have you ever heard a musician play a concerto? He has spent years mastering the technique, exercising his finger muscles to coincide with his brain impulses - then and only then can he truly allow, in full freedom, his interpretation of the musical score. There is nothing too difficult in getting around the fingering of a piano piece for him, so now he can apply all his interpretative skills to the music without thinking of the difficulty of it.
In Yoga when you have gained such a mastery of the technique of speeding up the mind to a higher vibration by jumping in between thoughts, by learning to master the body to sit still, and to master the mind to be quiet, and also center your attention on the light and keep it there unwaveringly, you will become like the artist.
Your Kriya technique - meditation technique - hatha techniques - pratyahara technique and the technique of Viveka and karma, will all lead to ultimate freedom or liberation or all that held you back from your desired yogic goal. In the gaining of that, make sure you lead an unfettered and unfearful functional life at the same time.