With permission of our beloved master, Acharya Agyaatadarshan Anand Nath we are placing the excerpts of the discourse that he delivered on the topic of Saundarya Lahari Sadhana for the benefit of the seekers on the path of Shiva-Shakti sadhana. Read on..
….Having done Guruvandana lets focus on our next shloka. Today’s shloka of Saundarya Lahari is the second shloka of the text, establishing the supremacy of Shakti that rules over the cosmic play. Lets chant and be immersed in Her gracefield.
तनीयांसं पांसुं तव चरण पङ्केरुहभवं
विरिञ्चिः संचिन्वन् विरचयति लोकानविकलम्।
वहत्येनं शौरिः कथमपि सहस्रेण शिरसां
हरः संक्षुद्यैनं भजति भसितोद्धूलनविधिम्॥
tanīyāṁsaṁ pāṁsuṁ tava caraṇa paṅkeruhabhavaṃ
viriñciḥ saṁcinvan viracayati lokānavikalam|
vahatyeanaṁ śauriḥ kathamapi sahasreṇa śirasāṁ
haraḥ saṁkṣudyainaṁ bhajati bhasitoddhūlanavidhim||
The meaning of the verse is as below –
The universe is created by Brahma (Viranchi) with the tiny and minute dust particles collected from Thy feet. And then this created universe is held and sustained arduously by Vishnu (Shaurih) on his thousand headed hood and Shiva (Harah), once he reduces this creation to ashes besmears that ash on his body with so much love and reverence.
The constituent elements of this cosmos are nothing more than few dust particles from Devi’s feet! Why feet? Because Brahma the creator approaches the Supreme Creator (Devi herself) upon her command but only in complete submission. Also feet have been associated with the special reverence for God and Guru. In Vidya Tradition Guru Lineages a disciple doesn’t worship the Guru directly but Gurupaduka (Gurus’ feet). Even Devi embodied in Bindu of SriChakra is approached that way. The feet of a sthiti-prajna, enlightened person are the point of refuge for the learners, disciples and grace-seekers.
DEVI – THE CREATOR OR CREATORS!
….Only few minute particles from Devi’s feet have such an enormous capacity embedded in them that these can multiply and occupy this whole space as planets, stars and ever expanding galaxies. These dust particles are representative of the entire band of sublime energies that make up and run this grand galactic play at a macro level. These dust particles not only create the external world but may also be the metaphorical representation of the individualized souls. The game of creation doesn’t end here, not only this level of manifestation where we are… ; Brahma (the agency of creation deputed by Mother) in fact creates 14 levels of Existence – 7 Below us and 6 Above!
Everything visible, invisible, yet to become visible in future; perceivable or not, imaginable or beyond can be created out of few dust particles from Her feet. Seems like hyperbole but not at all so. As a human (a contracted Shiva-Shakti incarnation) we have infinite possibilities. Right? Then what could be the possibilities and powers of the unbound infinite consciousness (Shiva-in-Shakti)?? Beyond description and beyond imagination..
These discrete energies such as Fire, Earth, Water, Indra, Yama, vayu are continuously engaged in their respective duties and that is what makes them respectworthy. They are worshipped as Gods and Goddesses but they are just the fearful servants of the Mother. Being the incharge of their limited territories (such as Varuna over water, Agni over Fire etc.) having limited powers, these energies continue to discharge their duties once assigned, even in the absence of any further commands from Devi just out of fear of Her; for they know that the wrath of Devi is the cause of ultimate destruction (mahapralaya) of this prakriti. And how does Devi preside over the activities in such infinitely expanded? Because She is omnipresent! In Kathopanishad the same sentiments have been expressed referring that cosmic Shakti as Brahman. Shakti indeed is Brahman of Shaivite philosophy! The cause of existence of such demi-gods, elements and energies is in the Mother’s happiness. And what do you think as cause of OUR existence?? (smiles)
DEVI – CAUSE OF TRINITY YET BEYOND!
….Further, Brahma, Vishnu and Rudra (or Mahakali, Mahalaxmi and Maha Saraswati) are not be taken as any separate gods or Goddesses but as the manifestation of Devi as Trinity responsible for different phases of universe.. these symbolizing the triadic cycle of evolution, sustenance and dissolution. Mother is present in as the ruler of all the triads and even beyond – Ichhaa, Gyana and Kriya, Para, Parapara and Apara, Jagrit, Swapna and Sushupti, Prarabdha, Kriyamana and Sanchit, past, present and future, Sat, Raja and Tama, the three letters of Omkara (ॐ) aa, u and m.. Shakti triad for scientists would probably be gravitational, magnetic and electrical fields and forces. I personally feel scientists would someday discover a new type of energy to complete the triad of Potential Energy, Kinetic Energy and… I see it as a possibility for a reason..science itself says we humans are still using only miniscule portions of our own mental capacities.
All the triads emerge from Devi – The Aadi Shakti. Out of her compassion, from time to time Ma Bhagwati, that independent energy principle manifests herself in various forms out of her own free-will that guide, reshape, and protect her own creation.
SHE IS IN YANTRA, MANTRA, IDOL & EVERYWHERE ELSE
….Shakti is particularly felt in some places, beings, objects and people. Temples, places of worship, Shakti-Peethas, Pyramids, Yantras, Mantras, Revolutionary and transformational ideas, Geysers, Fountains, Sun, Moon, Ocean, Great Scientists, painters, Poets, Musicians, Inventors, Yogis, Gurus, Healers, people with superhuman capacities… all such points of her intense presence are revered, praised by the gyaanis and sadhakas and also the materialists, scientists and rationalists etc. for Her intense presence not only transforms the situations, elevates the consciousness but also creates an unmatched sense of awe that isn’t felt anywhere else. But that doesn’t mean other places in the universe are devoid of her presence or she is less present in the places where we aren’t able to experience her manifestations. In fact science tells us that the entire universe is filled with matter (gross) or with energy(subtle) vibrations that can be felt distinctly.
Here, we live on this small this planet earth and there we see moon, planets, stars, sun and galaxies.. these objects we experience so vividly but what about the huge space in between? Is is really void? What we call as void, now scientists tell us that it is filled myriad of mysterious things; some known such as gravitational or electromagnetic fields and other like dark matter, black holes… Scientists feel their helplessness in saying that they have no idea of where on any point of this empty space a big bang or collapse of this grand celestial structure can start.. So much Power and infinite possibilities in this empty looking space!! Therefore never mistake this perceived emptiness as nothingness – Shakti is probably sleeping there and thus She has much more deeper and mysterious presence in that void. Now can you imagine of a place which is not ruled by Shakti?
DEVI AND BRAHMAN OF VEDA’S ARE THE SAME
….Shaivites and Shakta literature has a treatise by the name of ‘Spanda Karika’ and it beautifully explains how the Shakti starts from a Bindu (Srishti), keeps expanding while giving an illusion of stability (Sthiti) and finally reaches a state that leads to the total collapse (samhara) known as annihilation. In fact Shakti is never in ‘sthiti’ or non-expansive process. Only that the expansion of the universe shall stop at some point of time and then inward movement shall begin – the contraction to its original state of Bindu, a point. A point that scientists propose as a condensed (time/space) matrix where so called Big Bang happens – Shakti rules and oversees the process of involution as well as Maha-Pralaya-Saakshini.
You come here and greet each other saying ‘Shivoham!’ that means I am Shiva. If you are Shiva then what is your mind, intellect, this body, world and cosmos? This is the Shakti of Shiva. This world is creation of and is reflected in your consciousness – the Shiva. But why should we worship or have reverence for this Shakti? Will praising this Shakti shall anyway reward the Shiva in you? Well.. unless you start seeing this scenic, engaging, seemingly real experience as play of Shakti you can not become aware of what you are at the core. By identifying with Shakti – the power of consciousness, the Mother as the creator of this illusion or ‘Dream of Reality’ you not only gain access to the creative, dynamic and mobilizing aspect of Shakti but also recognize its unmoving core. Shakti means movement but movement of what and with respect to what? Shakti is the movement of consciousness and it moves with respect to itself, the consciousness only. That reference is also Shakti. Your consciousness – The Shiva, The Brahman of Ishopanishad :
Tadaijati Tannaijati Tad-doore tadwantike
Tadantarsya Sarvasya tadu sarvasya baahyatah||5||
That moves (Shakti), that moves not (Shiva). That is far and the same is near. That is within all this and That also is outside all this.
MANTRA, BEEJA & YANTRA CODED IN THIS SHLOKA
….Using tantric etymology we can actually derive ‘Kamakala mantra’ from the first word ‘Taniyaamsum’ of this shloka. The mandala or yantra for this shloka is a Shakti Triangle. In fact in Brahmi lipi letter ई was written as a triangle only. The more detailed description of this kamakala mantra shall find mention in shloka number 19 of Saundarya Lahari that starts with ‘Mukham Bindum Kritvaa..’
(Draws The Yantra of this shloka)
This Yantra is to be drawn on Gold plate. The beeja mantra that is written in the core is devi pranava but this is not the only beeja that can be used here. Your teacher can give you another suitable beeja mantra to be inscribed here. Worship and chanting of associated beeja Mantra or Shloka is done facing Ishana (North-East) direction. For gaining material affluence and access to secret vidyas the Shloka is to be chanted 1000 times everyday for 15 consecutive day.
If one wishes to acquire the wisdom of all the Vedas then as directed by Guru one has to chant 2000 shlokas everyday for 54 consecutive days. The Naivedyam is always critical in sakaama sadhana. For this verse the naivedyam is Urad Daal ke aate ke meethe Pue (Sweet Puris made of flour of black lentils).
In Tantric system Mother’s four charan (stages/variations) are remembered that are – Shukla (white), Rakta (Blood red), Mishra (Mixed or multi) and Nirvaan (Beyond all colours). Shukla represents Sattva, Rakta – Rajas, Mishra – Tamas and Nirvaan is transcendental form or swaroopa. The Shukla & Rakta charan are located in two petals of Agnyaa (third eye) chakra. Mishra charan is worshipped in Anahat (heart) chakra and Nirvana charan is located in Sahasraar (crown) chakra.
The deities to be meditated in respective chakras are : Agnyaa Chakra – Brahma and Vishnu, Anahata – Rudra and Sahasrara – SadaSHiva. So it must be understood that every Kaamya Prayoga can be aimed at any of the above charans of Devi and you therefore must consult your Guru/Teacher before attempting any kaamya prayogas.
DEVI PERMEATES ALL PLANES OF EXISTENCE
Question asked by a disciple – Do multiple Lokas really exist?
Yes! Do you think it is just a story or imagination? If you thought it is just a belief then in fact every religion has it. How did that happen that Seers of every religion experienced and described multiple levels of simultaneous existence in this cosmic fabric? Our scriptures describe 14 lokas in all as 1.Satyaloka, 2.Tapoloka, 3.Janahloka, 4.Maharloka, 5.Suvahloka, 6.Bhuvarloka 7.Bhuloka, 8.Atala, 9.Vitala, 10.Sutal, 11. Talaatala, 12.Mahaatala, 13.Rasatala and 14.Paataala. Islam, at least Shias also say there are 7 heavens.. 1.Rafi’, 2.Qaydum, 3.Marum, 4.Arfalun, 5.Hay’oun, 6.Arous and 7.Ajma’. Jainism also has a similar concept of Multiple Heavens and 7 Narakas called Prabha.. from Ratna prabha to Dhuma Prabha and then finally to Mahaatama Prabha. Judaism (the forefathers of christianity and Islam) has 7 heavens too. Even scientists like Isaac Newton have hypothesized the concept of Multiverse. In his work Opticks he openly endorses the possibility of simultaneous existence of universes within the universe. It is like dreams within a dream. But what Goddess’s dreams becomes real so they are real Lokas. Now you don’t have to come up with the argument of ‘How dreams of Goddess become real?’ Whatever real things in your life you have created have been in the form of an idea, a dream.. may be even a day-dream and you have attained almost all the dreams in your life so far. Hence if your dreams can be realized (of course in a limited way) then… Why not Goddess’s?
Further, some of these levels (some lower and some higher) or Lokas can be sensed and contacted by you in altered states of consciousness. There exist multiple techniques within the framework of Tantra to contact the entities and beings of these Lokas. In fact modes of such contact and connect exist in every part of world in almost every religion.
Interesting detour for your inquisitive thirsty mind? (Smiles)
Let’s thank to Gurumandala for their blessings upon us and thus close for the day.
Blessings from the Masters to you all..
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This is amazing and extra ordinary. Thank you Acharyaji.