WHAT IS THE DESCRIPTION OF THE 43 & 44 th TECHNIQUE OF MEDITATION( ELEVEN TECHNIQUES CONCERNED
Technique No. 43;-''With mouth slightly open, keep mind in the middle of the tongue. or, as breath comes silently in, feel the sound “hh.”Here Lord Shiva points out towards'' Soham meditation''
WHAT IS SOHAM MEDITATION?-
1-Soham meditation is also known as Hamsa, Hansa, and So Hum. Soham is a Sanskrit word, which means identifying oneself with the universe or ultimate reality. In terms of meditation, it can be broken down into two parts-Sooo, which is the sound of inhalation and Hum, which is the sound of exhalation.
2-"Soham" means "He I am" or "I am He", "I am Brahman." "Sah" means "He." "Aham" means "I." This is the greatest of all Mantras. This is the Mantra of Paramahamsa Sannyasins. This is an Abheda-Bodha-Vakya which signifies the identity of Jiva or the individual soul and Brahman, the Supreme Self. This Mantra comes in the Isavasya Upanishad: "Sohamasmi."
3-These two together combine into the breathing technique of a man. It is one of the most important mantras in tantrism and Kriya yoga. If we omit the consonants S and H, it is pronounced as ‘OM’, the main mantra of the Hindus. Soham meditation makes one feel omnipotent and blissful from within.
4-Meditation on 'Soham' is same as meditation on OM. Some repeat a compound Mantra "Hamsah Soham-Soham Hamsah." Before you practise Soham Dhyana or meditation on "Soham" you must practise the Neti-Neti (not this, not this) doctrine. You must negate or deny the body and the other Koshas by repeating "Naham Idam Sariram"-"Aham Etat Na." "I am not this body, mind or Prana. I am He, I am He-Soham, Soham!"
R Mere mechanical repetition will not help you much. It has its own benefits. But maximum benefits can only be realised in feeling. Feeling is Self-realisation.
5-The Jiva or the individual soul is repeating this Mantra 21,600 times within 24 hours. Even during sleep the Soham-repetition goes on by itself. Watch the breath very carefully and you will know this. When you inhale the breath, the sound 'So' is produced. When you exhale, 'Ham' is produced. This is termed Ajapa-Mantra because this is done without moving the lips along with the breath.
6-The repetition of the compound Mantra "Hamsah Soham -Soham Hamsah," creates a deeper impression. The late famous Sri Sheshadri Swami of Tiruvannamalai used to repeat this compound Mantra. When he moved alone in the streets and bazaar he repeated this Mantra. He meditated on this compound Mantra. We say 'God is Love-Love is God.' Similarly repetition of 'Hamsah Sham-Soham Hamsah,' gives more force. This intensifies the force of the Mantra.
7-The aspirant gets more internal strength from the Atman or the Soul-force. His conviction grows stronger. This sort of repetition corresponds to the repetition of the Mahavakya, "Aham Brahma Asmi.
"Anal Haq" of the Sufi-Fakirs corresponds to Soham of the Paramahamsa-Sannyasins. Guru Nanak highly extols this Mantra.
8-Your duration of life is counted really by so many 'Soham' breaths in the
light of Yoga. Soham is the breath of life. OM is the Soul of breath. Eliminate 'Ha' and substitute 'I.' Soham will become 'So I am.' If you concentrate on the breath you will notice that the breath is gradually becoming very, very slow when concentration becomes deep. Gradually the repetition of Soham will drop when there is deep concentration. The mind will become very calm. You will enjoy. Ultimately you will become one with the Supreme Self.
THE INTERPRETATION OF THE 43th TECHNIQUE OF MEDITATION ;-
1-LORD SHIVA REPLIES;-
''With mouth slightly open, keep mind in the middle of the tongue. or, as breath comes silently in, feel the sound “hh.”
2-Mind can be focused anywhere in the body. Ordinarily, we have focused it in the head, but it can be focused anywhere. And with a change of the focus, your qualities change. For example, in many Eastern countries ..Japan, China, Korea .. traditionally it has been taught that mind is in the belly, not in the head. And because of this, those who thought that mind is in the belly had different qualities of mind. You cannot have those qualities because you think mind is in the head.
3-Really, the mind is nowhere. The brain is in the head; the mind is not there. “Mind” means your focusing. You can focus it anywhere, and once focused it is very difficult to remove it from that point.That is why the
more mind becomes intellectual, rational, the less capable it becomes of love, because love needs a focusing near the heart . If you are doing mathematics, the head is okay. But love is not mathematics .
4-But mind can be changed. Tantra says there are seven centers, and mind can be changed to any center. Each center has a different functioning. If you concentrate on a particular center, you become a
different man.In Japan there has been a military group, which is just like the KSHATRIYAS in India, known as the SAMURAI. They are trained to be soldiers, and their first training is to bring the mind down to just two inches below the navel. In Japan this center is called the HARA.
5-The samurai are trained to bring the mind to the hara. Unless a soldier can bring his mind’s focusing to the hara, he is not allowed to go to fight, and this is right. The samurai are the greatest fighters the world has ever known, the greatest warriors; in the world there is no comparison with a samurai. He is a different man, a different being, because his focusing is different.
6-They say that when you are fighting there is no time. Mind needs time to function; it calculates. If you are attacked and your mind thinks about how to protect, you have missed the point already, you have lost. There is no time. You must function timelessly and mind cannot function timelessly, mind needs time. Howsoever short, mind needs time.
7-Below the navel there is a center, the hara, which functions timelessly. If the focusing is at the hara and the fighter is fighting, then this fight is intuitive, not intellectual. Before you attack him, he knows. It is a subtle feeling in the hara, not in the head. It is not an inference, it is a psychic telepathy. Before you attack him, before you think of attacking him, the thought has reached him. His hara is hit and he is ready to protect himself. Even before you have attacked, he is in defense, he has protected himself.
8-Sometimes, if two persons are fighting and both are samurais, defeating the other is a problem. Neither can defeat the other; it is a problem. No one can be declared the winner. In a way it is impossible because you cannot attack the man — before you attack, he knows.
9-There was one Indian mathematician… The whole world was wonderstruck because he would not calculate. Ramanujam was his name. You would give him the problem and he would give you the answer immediately. One of England’s best mathematicians, Hardy, visited Ramanujam. Hardy was one of the best mathematicians ever born, and he had to work with a particular problem for six hours. But Ramanujam was given the same problem and he answered immediately. There was no possibility for the mind to function in this way, as the mind needs time.
10-Ramanujam was asked again and again, “How do you do it?” He would say, “I don’t know. You give me the problem, and the answer comes to me. It comes from somewhere below. It is not from my head.” It was coming from the hara. He was not aware, he was not trained, but this is my feeling: he must have been a Japanese in his previous birth because in India we have not worked much upon the hara.
11-Tantra says, focus your mind on different centers and the results will be different. This technique is concerned with focusing on the tongue, in the middle of the tongue. WITH MOUTH SLIGHTLY OPEN ...as if you are going to speak. Not closed, but slightly open as if you are going to speak; not like when you are speaking, but like when you are just going to speak.
Then keep the mind in the middle of the tongue. You will have a very strange feeling, because the tongue has a center just in the middle which controls your thoughts.
12-If you suddenly become aware and you focus on that, your thoughts will stop. Focus as if your whole mind has come to the tongue — just in the middle. Let the mouth be slightly open as if you were going to speak, and then focus the mind as if it is not in the head. Feel it as if it is in the tongue, just in the middle.
13-The tongue has the center of speech, and thought is speech. What are you doing when you are thinking? Talking within. Can you think anything without talking within? You are alone; you are not talking to anyone, you are thinking. What are you doing while you are thinking? Talking within, talking to yourself. Your tongue is involved. Next time, while you are thinking, be aware: feel your tongue. It is vibrating as if you are talking to someone else. Then feel it again, and you can feel that the vibrations are centered in the middle. They arise from the middle and then they spread all over the tongue.
14-Thinking is talking within. If you can bring your total consciousness, your mind, to the center of the tongue, thinking stops. So those who have been practicing silence, they are simply practicing not talking. If you stop talking outwardly, then you will become very deeply aware of talking inside. And if you remain completely silent for one month or two months or one year, not talking, you will feel your tongue vibrating violently. You are not feeling it because you go on talking and the vibrations are released.
15-But even now, if you stop and become conscious while thinking, you will feel your tongue vibrating a little. Stop your tongue completely and then try to think — you cannot think. Stop your tongue completely as if it is frozen; do not allow it to move. You cannot think then.The center is
just in the middle, so bring your mind there. WITH MOUTH SLIGHTLY OPEN, KEEP MIND IN THE MIDDLE OF THE TONGUE. OR, AS BREATH COMES SILENTLY IN, FEEL THE SOUND “HH.”
This is the second technique. It is just similar: OR, AS BREATH COMES SILENTLY IN, FEEL THE SOUND “HH.”
16-With the first technique your thinking will stop, you will feel a solidity within ..as if you have become solid. When thoughts are not there you become immovable; thoughts are the inner movement. And when thoughts are not there and you have become immovable, you have become part of the eternal, which only appears to move but which is immovable, which remains unmoved.
17-In thoughtlessness you become part of the eternal, the unmoved. With thought you are part of the movement, because nature is movement. The world is movement, that is why we have called it the SANSAR, the wheel ...it is moving and moving and moving. The world is movement and the hidden, the ultimate, is unmoved, unmoving, immovable.
18-It is just like a wheel that is moving, but a wheel is moving on something which never moves. A wheel can move only because in the center there is something which never moves, which remains unmoved. The world moves and the transcendental remains unmoved. If your thoughts stop, suddenly you drop from this world to the other. With the movement stopped inside, you become part of the eternal ...that which never changes.
19-OR, AS BREATH COMES SILENTLY IN, FEEL THE SOUND “HH.” Open your mouth slightly, as if you are going to speak. Then inhale, and be aware of the sound which is created by inhaling. It is just “HH” — whether you are exhaling or inhaling. You are not to make the sound, you are just to feel the incoming breath on your tongue. It is very silent. You will feel “HH.” It will be very silent, very slightly audible. You have to be very alert to be aware of it. But do not try to create it. If you create it, you have missed the point. Your created sound will be of no help, it is the natural sound that happens when you inhale or exhale.
20-But the technique says while inhaling, not exhaling — because while exhaling you will go out, and with the sound YOU will go out, while the effort is to go in. So while inhaling, hear the sound “HH.” Go on inhaling and go on feeling the sound “HH.” Sooner or later you will feel that the sound is not being created only at the tongue, it is being created in the throat also. But then it is very, very inaudible. With very deep alertness you can become aware of it.
21-Start from the tongue, then by and by be alert; go on feeling it. You will hear it in the throat, then you will start hearing it in the heart. And when it reaches the heart, you have gone beyond mind. All these techniques are just to give you a bridge from where you can move from thought to no-thought, from mind to no-mind, from the surface to the center.
Repeat 'So' mentally when you inhale, 'Ham' mentally when you exhale. Practise this for two hours in the morning and evening. If you can repeat for 10 hours, it is all the more good. You must practise meditation for full 24 hours when you advance on the path. Study Hamsa Upanishad. You will find real rest during meditation. Then there is no necessity for sleep.
THE INTERPRETATION OF THE 44th TECHNIQUE OF MEDITATION ;-
1-LORD SHIVA REPLIES;-
''Center on the sound “aum” without any “a” or “m”.
2-CENTER ON THE SOUND “AUM” ...A-U-M, AUM — WITHOUT ANY “A” OR “M”. Just the “U” remains. This is a difficult technique, but for some it may be suitable, particularly for those who work with sound: musicians, poets, those who have a very sensitive ear, for them this technique can be helpful. For others, those who have no sensitive ear, this is very difficult because it is very delicate.
3-You have to intone Aum, and you have to feel in this Aum three sounds separately: A-U-M. Intone Aum, and in the sound you have to feel three sounds — A-U-M. They are there, infused together. A very delicate ear can be aware, can hear A-U-M separately while intoning. They are separate ..very close, but separate. If you cannot hear them separately, then this technique cannot be done. Your ears will have to be trained for it.
4-In Japan, particularly in Zen, they train the ears first. They have a method of training the ears. The wind is blowing outside ..it has a sound. The master will say, “Concentrate on it. Feel all the nuances (modulation), the changes: when the sound is angry, when the sound is furious, when the sound is compassionate, when the sound is loving, when the sound is strong, when the sound is delicate. Feel the nuances of the sound. The wind is blowing through the trees ...feel it. The river is running ...feel the nuances.”
5-For months together the seeker, the meditator, will be sitting by the side of the bank of the river, listening to it. It has different sounds. Everything is changing. In the rain it will be flooded; it will be very much alive, overflowing. The sounds will be different. In the summer it will be reduced to nothingness, sounds will cease. But there will be inaudible sounds if one is listening, if you listen. All the year round the river will be changing, and one has to be aware.
6-In Hermann Hesse’s book SIDDHARTHA, Siddhartha lives with a boatman. And there is no one, just the river, the boatman and Siddhartha. And the boatman is a very silent man. He has lived all his life with the river. He has become silent, he rarely speaks. Whenever Siddhartha feels lonely, he tells Siddhartha to go to the river, to listen to the river. It is better than listening to human words.
7-And then by and by, Siddhartha is attuned to the river. Then he begins to feel its moods — the river changes moods. Sometimes it is friendly and sometimes it is not, and sometimes it is singing and sometimes it is weeping and crying, and sometimes there is laughter and sometimes there is sadness. And then he begins to feel the slight, delicate differences. His ear becomes attuned.
8-So in the beginning you may feel it to be difficult, but try. Intone Aum, go on intoning it, feeling A-U-M. Three sounds are combined together in it: Aum is a synthesis of three sounds. Once you start feeling them differently, then drop “A” and “M”. Then you cannot say Aum: “A” will be dropped, “M” will be dropped. Then “U” will remain. Why? What will happen? The real thing is not the mantra. It is not A-U-M or the dropping. The real thing is your sensitivity.
9-First you become sensitive of three sounds, which is very difficult. And when you become so sensitive that you can drop the “A” and “M” and only the middle sound remains, in this effort you will lose your mind. You will be so much engrossed in it, so deeply attentive to it, so sensitive to it, that you will forget to think. And if you think, you cannot do this.
10-This is just an indirect way to bring you out of your head. So many ways have been tried, and they look very simple. You wonder, “What can happen? Nothing will happen by such simple methods.” But miracles happen, because it is just indirect. Your mind is being focused on something very subtle. If you focus, you cannot go on thinking; mind will drop. Suddenly one day you will become aware, and you will wonder what has happened.
11-In Zen they use koans. One of the famous koans they tell to the beginner is, “Go and try to hear the sound of one hand. You can create a sound with two hands. If one hand can create a sound, hear it.”
There is an example of one small boy who was serving a Zen master. He would see many people coming. They would come to the master, put their head at his feet, and then they would ask the master to tell them something to meditate on. He would give them a koan. The boy was just doing some work for the master, he was serving him. He was just nine or ten years of age.
12-Seeing every day many people coming and going, one day he also came very seriously, put his head at the master’s feet, and then asked him, “Give me some koan, some object for meditation.” The master laughed, but the boy was very serious, so the master said, “Okay! Try to hear the sound of one hand. And when you have heard it, then come to me and tell me.”
13-The boy tried and tried. He couldn’t sleep the whole night. In the morning he came and he said, “I have heard. It is the sound of the wind blowing through the trees.” The master said, “But where is the hand involved in it? Go again and try.” So he would come every day. He would find some sound and then he would come, and the master would say, “This is also not it. Go on trying, go on trying!”
14-Then one day the boy didn’t come. The master waited and waited, and then he told his other disciples to go and find out what had happened ..it seemed the boy had heard. So they went around. He was sitting under a tree, absorbed ...just a newborn buddha. They came back and they said, “But we are afraid to disturb the boy. He is looking just like a newborn buddha. It seems he has heard the sound.” So the master came, put his head at the boy’s feet and asked him, “Have you heard? It seems you have heard.” The boy said, “Yes, but it is soundlessness.”
15-How did this boy develop? His sensitivity developed. He tried every sound, he listened attentively. Attention developed. He would not sleep. The whole night he would listen for what is the sound of one hand. He was not so intellectual as you are, so he never thought that there cannot be any sound of one hand. If the koan is given to you, you are not going to try. You will say, “What nonsense! There cannot be any sound with one hand.”
16-But the boy tried. The master had said there must be something in it, so he tried. He was a simple boy, so whenever he would hear something, whenever he would feel this was something new, he would come again. But by this process his sensitivity developed. He became attentive, alert, aware. He became one-pointed. He was in search, and the mind dropped because the master said, “If you go on thinking you may miss. Sometimes there is the sound which is of one hand. Be so alert that you do not miss it.”
17-He tried and tried. There is no sound of one hand, but that was just an indirect method to create sensitivity, awareness. And one day, suddenly, everything disappeared. He was so attentive that only attention was there, so sensitive that only sensitivity was there, so aware — not aware of something, but simply aware! And then he said, “I have heard it, but it is soundlessness. It is soundlessness!” But you have to be trained to be attentive, to be alert.
18-This is just a method to make you very delicately aware of the subtle nuances of sound. Just doing this, you will forget Aum. Not only will “A” drop, not only will “M” drop, but one day suddenly you will also drop, and there will be soundlessness, and you will be a newborn buddha sitting under a tree.