Ganapati Muni’s Science of Mantra – Part One

Vedic goddess

Vedic goddess

Here’s a four-part post series for scholars!

I haven’t studied the layered meanings in Sanskrit.  But I learnt a few sacred Names and phrases along the way;  I hear the chanting and smell the sandal paste;  the syllables are long musical frequencies;  from in between them, emerge the tantras.  Tantra is the art of touch throughout the universe.  Needing to touch base with some of my Indian and Vedic threads, I turned to Ganapati Muni’s analysis of his mantric science.  I prepared this text in the 1990s from Sri K Natesan’s translation, for the Ramana Foundation Journal Self Enquiry.  Sri Natesan – a “grandchild” in the Muni’s sacred lineage – checked it for mistakes.

In the text the secret known to knowers of truth is mentioned:  when we truly know that we do not know – we begin.

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“Guru Mantra Bhashyam”   by Ganapati Muni

Introduced and Translated by S.Sankaranarayanan
Adapted for English readers by J.A., with the help of Sri K.Natesan at Ramana Ashram

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The Muni

The Muni

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The eighteenth chapter of Sri Ramana Gita contains a series of verses which describe the characteristics of Ramana Maharshi. Amongst them, the tenth verse enunciates in the style of the Tantra, the Mantra by which the Maharshi has to be invoked.

Ganapati Vasishta Muni valued this Mantra very highly. When disciples approached Ramana Maharshi for elucidation on the Mantra, he directed them to the Muni. So Vasishta Muni decided to write a commentary on the 10th verse of the eighteenth chapter of Sri Ramana Gita for the benefit of aspirants. The Guru-mantra-Bhashyam was written in sanskrit and it was published along with the Text and Sri Kapali Shastriar’s Prakasha Bhashye (Commentary) of Sri Ramana Gita.

Considering the importance of the work and the wealth of spiritual insights it unfolds, a free translation in English of the whole commentary and Appendix to the Commentary is provided here, in four parts. Footnotes explain certain terms and concepts occurring in the commentary.

Meeting

Meeting

Ramana and Ganapati were spiritual brothers – Ramana the silent jnani or Realised One and Ganapati the tantric philosopher and poet.  Ramana was regarded as the embodiment of Skanda or Kumar:  Ganesh and Skanda are the sons born to Siva and Parvati. When the two wild young sages sat together in the caves of Siva’s hill Arunachala, Ramana taught Ganapati that the root of the mantra and of the breath are one and the same, to dissolve into Self enquiry.  Ganapati’s outpouring of verses to the Mother brought their ageless Saivite brotherhood into the 20th century.

Skanda and Ganapati

skanda and ganapati

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Some years ago, Alan Jacobs and I wrote 55 sonnets on the Ramana Gita English version; the sonnet form was chosen, to interact imaginatively with the formal Sanskrit text, and as a spiritual practice. Here below, to provide the setting, is a sonnet based on verses 8 – 11 of Chapter Eighteen, Ramana Gita (see below). It contains our interpretation of the Mantra OM VACADHBUVE RAMANA.

butterlamp - Version 2

In Praise of Ramana:   Three

FROM grasping freed, his peace
in quantum abyss unheeding
restores our alchemy. He pilots the seas.
Ganapati child at breasts of Parvati feeding,
cried “Mother’s mine!” In her lap, Kumar his brother
replied, “Never mind, for mine is Father!
I rest in his right heart, he kisses my head!”

Give glory, elephant child, to He whose lance
in Kumar’s hand pierced hill to the heart, ‘tis said.
Boon bringer, pour poem from His holy glance
by Vedic vessel whence emerges Word
by power of Fire as mystic Sword.

Without a staff, our song you uphold –
ferryman, defend everyman from demon gold!

butterlamp boat

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     THE VERSES FROM ‘RAMANA GITA’ CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

v.8     Free from infatuation, greed, distracting thought and envy, he is ever blissful. He is ever active, helping others to cross the sea of Becoming, regardless of reward.

v.9   When Ganapati saying ‘Mother is mine’ sat on the lap of Parvati, Kumara retorted ‘Never mind, Father is mine,” and got on to Siva’s lap and was kissed by him on the head.   Of this Kumara who pierced (with his lance) the Krauncha Hill, Ramana is a glorious manifestation.

v.10     He is the mystic import of the mantra ‘OM VACHADBHUVE NAMAH.

v.11     An ascetic without danda , yet is he Dandapani.   He is Taraka for crossing the sea of suffering, yet is he the foe of Taraka.

NOTE - Danda is a "Staff"or wand, yet Dandapani is the staff 
holder - even one who no longer uses it.  
The word Taraka means Deliverer, but "Taraka" was also the 
great demon Taraka who almost destroyed the universe. 
These are typical Sanskrit word-plays.

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Sacred India Tarot - laws of Manu as the Hierophant - Ganapati the scribe near Arunachala

Sacred India Tarot – laws of Manu as the Hierophant – Ganapati the scribe near Arunachala

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THE COMMENTARY ON THE MANTRA OF THE MASTER

“Om Vacadbhuve Namah Nahasyam”-
“Salutation to the Fire of Brahman whence emerges the word”

First Chapter: Pronouncing the Mantra
VERSE TEN, Chapter 18, RAMANA GITA

Vedådi påkadamanottara kacchapesair                 “He is the secret sense
Yuktair dharadhara susuptyamaresvaraisca           of the group of words arrived at
Suksmamrtayug amrtena saha pranatya                 by uttering the following Sampannasabda patalasya nahasyam artham*      Om Va ca dbhu, ve and Namah”

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  • Vedadih “the beginning of the Veda”, or Pranama OMKARA (1)
    –Pakadamanat “from the destroyer of Paka Asura”, that is, Indra bija, whose letter is la
    –Uttarah the letter next to it alphabetically, that is VA ; pakadamanottara kacchapesah —the bija (2) of Rudra in His form as Lord of the tortoise Kurmesa” that is, the letter CA.
    With these letters OM   VA CA, – Dharadharah, the bija of the Mountain,
    the letter DA.
    Susuptih   the sakti power of deep sleep, whose bija is the letter BHA.
    –Amare-Isvarah “the Lord (Isvara) of the immortals” (Amara, deathless) – Rudra dwells in this Name, his seed-letter U ; therefore DBHU.   Yuktaih, “union” (at the beginning of the line) joins this with the letter DBHU.
    –Suksmamrta, whose Sakti’s bija is the letter E ;   Yuk joined to amrtena, (nectar) whose seedletter is the watery VA, form the letter VE.
    –Pranatya, (Salutation) unites with the suffix namah (3.) The Sampanna sabda patalasya group of words forms the secret of the mantra OM VACADBHUVE NAMAH NAHASYAM. This can be known only to the knowers of Truth.

 (Sabda is another word for Primordial Sound, Word, the Vedas, Omkara.)

 The secret (Nahasyam) of this Mantra is revealed only to knowers of Truth. To them alone can the artham or full meaning be outwardly expressed; as in the form of the king of ascetics, Bhagavan Ramana (4 ), when questioned by Amrtanatha. (Ch.18, Ramana Gita)

  • Thus   “OM Vacadbhuve Namah” is established as the Mantra of Bhagavan the Guru.

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Sri Kapali Shastri - a disciple of the Muni - in the 1930s

Sri Kapali Shastri – a disciple of the Muni – in the 1930s

Kapali Sastri’s Commentary on this verse in the Ramana Gita, states in brief:

“By joining all these letters we arrive at the group of letters OM VACADBHUVE NAMAH.   This group of letters forms the Mantra. Its secret sense, known to the learned, expresses the meaning   “RAMANA WHO IS THE FORM OF THE DEITY INVOKED BY THIS MANTRA”.

Who is God, expressed in this Mantra ? Subrahmanya.   How so ? ‘Om Vachadbhuve Namah’ – Omkara is the supreme Brahman.   The word is indeclinable, and so it will make sense with all the case endings.   Vacadbhu, the field that creates, releases the Word, the Fire.   The fire became the word and entered the mouth.   So explains the scripture.   Born from the god who presides over speech is Vacadbhu, born from Fire, Kumara. Salutation to Him.

“This is not physical fire, but the effulgence of the word. In order to drive this home, in the Mantra, Agni is denoted by the word ‘vacat’.   It is the tradition of the Tantra Shastra to expound the Mantra by using words of similar sense.   Following this, the Master (Ganapati Muni) has expounded the Mantra of Subrahmanya.   The author of this work, our Master has been praising the Maharshi, as one born out of a portion of Kumara.   And so the essence of the Mantra is said to be Ramana.”

Kapali Shastri

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FOOTNOTES - PRONOUNCING THE MANTRA:
* - Sri K Natesan states: "The literal translation is given here.
In Tantra Shastra (science) the mantras are not mentioned plainly 
and directly. There is a way of symbolic expression for which a 
working knowledge of their terminology is needed."

1 - pranava the letter OM:  the primordial sound from which the 
Veda, the word of revelation, has sprung

2 - The Tantra talkes about bijakshava, SEED LETTERS which contain
in a potential form what they would be manifesting. The SEED LETTER
is fixed for each Deity.  For example Indra's SEED LETTER is la. 
By convention, each SEED LETTER is connoted by one or more names.
The Bhija-nighantu, the Dictionary of seed-letters, 
gives the corresponding names.

3 - Pranati, bowing down, which is expressed by the word namah 

4 - This verse is one of twenty four verses in praise of the
Maharshi, at the end of which the questioner Amrtanatha addresses
him.
K Natesan & Vamadeva Shastri

K Natesan & Vamadeva Shastri (David Frawley)

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The Detailed Commentary by Ganapati Muni now Continues :

If we are asked:   is not this mantra, the famous one of Skanda, mentioned in Tantric works like Saradatilaka? we say it is only the mantra of our guru, Bhagavan. It is known that Bhagavan Ramana, the Master, is avatara, descent of effulgence from the original guru, Skanda the Godhead, another of whose names is Sanat kumara(5)

Ramana sat in silence, then asked the Muni - "Did you write down all I spoke?"

Ramana sat in silence, then asked the Muni – “Did you write down all I spoke?”

THE BODY OF THE MANTRA

This great mantra is originally of six letters as vacadbhuve namah. It becomes a mantra of seven letters with the pranava which is usually employed by certain Tantrics at the beginning of all mantras.   Just as the five-lettered namah shivayah becomes six letters with the Omkara, so also here.   All godheads have four forms. One pertains to the spirit, the other to the physical, another to the gods and the last to the form of the mantra.

Elsewhere we find this vedic piece:

Vacam astapadim aham navasraktim rtasprsam       “Around Indra I create the body
Indrat paritanvam name                            of the Word with eight steps and nine parts
                                                                                 close in touch with the Right Law.”

(Rig Veda VIII 65.12)

By this Rik, the Rishi says that he creates the body of Indra, in the form of mantraThe Tantrics also say this:

Derike manavabhrantim                                   “To inferno he goes who mistakes
pratimasu silamatim                                        the guru for a man,
Mantresvaksarabhuddhim                          the idol in the temple for a piece of stone
ca kurvano nirayam vrajet.                                 and the mantra for a group of letters.”

 

Here the popular parlance that Gayatri is the Deity of the most famous Mantra, Tat Savitah serves as evidence. (6)   Gayatri is the Mantra itself alone,  not ‘a woman’; (this word indicates the name of a metre –  the feminine sakti as the name or vessel).   What does this establish?   that the body of God Guha in the form of mantra has six letters.   In this view that the body is formed by the Mantra, six letters become the six faces of the Lord.

Likewise, the five letters in the Panchakshara Mantra of the Supreme Shiva — NAMAH SHIVAYA — are his five faces. This is the same as the saying of the Mimamsakas:   that the Deity is formed by the Mantra.

vedic vessel

vedic vessel

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 THE GENERAL MEANING OF THE MANTRA

  • Om to the One in the form of Brahman. As the word OM is indeclinable, it keeps the same syntax with all cases. As acclaimed in the Upanishads, the letter OM denotes Brahman.
  • Vacadbhuva – Vacatah “from one who speaks”, creates statements.   This is derived from Agni (god of sacred fire) in whose subtle form is the inner sense of ‘word’.
  • Bhu born, to Him Namah, salutation. It is well known that Skanda was born from Fire, Agni.
Agni

Agni

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TO BE CONTINUED.

FOOTNOTES: GANAPATI'S COMMENTARY CONTINUES ...
5 - Chandogya Upanishad (7:26:2) equates Sanatkumara with Skanda,
and says that he takes ashore across the (ocean of) ignorance, 
the pure soul with constant awareness.

6 - "Tat savitur varenyam bhargo devasya dimah
Dhiyo yo nah pracodayat" -
"We meditate upon that excellent splendour
of the Lord Savitr.  May he activate our thoughts."

7 - Badarayana is the author of the Brahma sutras.  This Sutra
IV.1.5 says that symbols are to be regarded as Brahman, and 
not vice versa.  An inferior object has to be looked upon as
symbolic of the superior.

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Ramana Maharshi

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**

My adventure invites fellow travellers. I am a poet, an artist and a seer. I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

aquariel link

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012-2014. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love Letters with a Dancing Yeti

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kevsyeti col

This wild shaggy creature fills me with joy and smiles.

Veteran readers of the Ramana Foundation journal Self Enquiry (1993-2004) may recall an exchange of letters from our very own correspondent in Tiruvannamalai.  He reflected on the Guru scene, and took the plunge himself.   Nowadays, tucked up in a delicious French valley – or rather, in the Yeti’s own words (which he prefers): “tucked up ‘n fukked up in his petit coin, suitably located among the desirable caves where his ancestors nibbled their fleas among the shady trees of mittel France”  …  while wintering in India to pedal his astral bike from Arunachala to Alaska – the poet in the Yeti sings.  We just started to write to each other again.

Book of Is

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This might be a Post without an end in sight.

16 January 2014
Dear Kev, just a word to say I loved reading ALL YOUR WORDS for Xmas and to smell India again through your descriptions, and those sadhus and bird noises, and to have a good ketchup with you generally. With much love to you,  Xx Jane

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Thanks Jane, good to hear from ya. Those words were rough and unvarnished as they fell through my head. Rash to dump ’em like that, but communicating sometimes gets huffy and puffy and won’t wait. Your blog is too big for me . Do you have time for owt else? Sometimes I see lovely stuff there, but to try and read it all would be like being the guy who constantly must keep up with the 24 hour surveillance camera. Life throws so much in my face that I can’t offer so much time to the inside of another head, even when it pours out gems. I look forward to a selection of the best, which I can sink into like a warm bath. A lake of dancing fresh water may gladden the eye and soul, but it’s too much to drink and I fear it’ll drown me before I get to the other side or find the bottom. Love from Kev.

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17 January
Don’t let it worry you, Kev.   My stuff might not be your cup of tea;  you poets have your cups full with Life anyway! – as you say.  And I’m glad the Great Teapot in the sky keeps pouring through you its bounteous brew.   Those who settle for bread and butter with my blog find their own bits of jam here and there:  maybe even a Devon cream tea with scones if they are lucky – nobody reads it all, but it is there for a large table.  I’m glad you’ve sunk such rich deep roots in france, and thankful that I don’t have to cope with all them ants in India.  I read about your adventures with them, with awe.  Much love, Jane x

Book of Is 2

Book of IS: Mt Sandford, Alaska.

The poems inside, may step on a banana skin,
then slide, so far, within the deeps,
they meet the stars,
as they examine simple things
from bits that Darwin missed,
to mysteries like why this all exists,
or who, or what, we are.

“This cover blurb is meant to sell the book,
but if you want to check it out,
just step inside, and take a look.”

(“Is” –  by Kevan Myers
published 2009 by Dancing Yeti Books)

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Dear Jane, I ain’t complaining about the flavour of the tea, though must confess the details of the esoteric and symbols can be wasted on me. I love stuff I read when you reflect on this or that, and of course I have enjoyed reflections of your past, particularly where Peter comes up, but my cup runneth over fairly soon when you are pouring from your bottomless jug (s?). I am amazed by your fecundity and glad for you that it is.

When in UK I sometimes buy a saturday or sunday paper to check TV progs, and then “enjoy ” reading the bloody thing for at least the next ten days as the nesting boxes in my brains get filled with tweeting terribly fast. Thus it is very much more volume than content that leaves me peering over the vastnesses of your bloggery like stout Cortes viewing the Pacific. Like I say, I really look forward to the shortish book of selected gems unthreaded from the kilometres of golden chains where they presently dangle, so sparkling …

Much love, Kev

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Dearest Kev, as I canna yet stopper the fall of tea from the sky, I leave it to you to identify and assemble a few concise leaves of best earl grey for your pot, you lazy old poet!   However I am indeed delighted that you do deign to dip toe & wade a little – say from San Francisco bay area to the bridge, you know it is all pacific really – and especially that you have located and read my outpourings about my Pa, which I value.  Never mind about the Hesoterick, just look at the pictures.   The pictures are there for our tired old eyes to rest from all the wordzzz.

Peter now 91 and a little frail, has email at last – I hope to see him later this month, braving winter gales along the Tarka Bike Trail to Torrington, and then steep hills up and down to his piggery.   He lives in elegant grandeur in The Old Piggery … (in case your cyberwhotsit breaks down.)  He would love to hear from you, and definitely needs practice with his email/Ipad, and he keeps nice biscuits in his tin.
I am seeing Quince and John next month here in Blighty.   Much love, xJanex

PS we have been having a lot of rain.

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kevsyeti bw

Gawd bless, yer, dear,
I have unloaded Peter’s edress and have good intentions to use it. Just got briefly hassled by Authorhouse, offering to print my wurkz. I took a rain cheque, but should really set them on your trail, since yo wurdz are bustin’ out all over. Are you planning to huff and puff your way to Torrington by bike path? Remember I once did it from the Grey Wen to Land’s Sakes and back, which is fine along canals and suchlike, but once confronted with steep and wiggly Devon lanes, big roads are safer and quicker, because you don’t lose downhill momentum at the bottom by savage wigglies or charging pantechnicons or harvesters suddenly blocking the whole lane.

It’s very gracious of Q and J to touch your feet in salubrious w. Hampstead, but high time you hauled your sorry backside over to see them in the gorgeous part of France where they and I offer such splendid horse-pit-alities, and where I also met your fine mama.
Anyroad, enough of this blether. You could have probably filled at least five pages of blog in the time spent soaking in these worthless sentiments.
Much love
Kev

yeti cover work

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19 January 
I remember your Great Ride, Kev, and when you turned up in your dayglo cycling gear in the rain – my pa thought it was a bloke from Mars selling spin-driers, and nearly shut the door.  

The trouble with canals and nice flat trails, is the winter monsoon mud in those parts.  To avoid this,  I shall have to turn off from the Puffing Billy at Torrington into steep cow-patted lanes; and  huff up and down the wigglies amid splatter from tractors, till I reach the noble abode, hopefully before dark, & in time for tea & scotch.

Now I have a proposal for thy wurdz and mine, Kev: How about, I create a post for them, in the calm clear waters of me bloggery, like we did those years ago in SE.  It may burble along quietly for as long as it likes, ever deepening the single post which stands by itself in the reflecting lake, O Sake, until we are distracted and fade away elsewhere, like sweet birds run out of twitter.   

Do you agree?  I would add a few snaps from the album of happy times, and a verse or two of yourn.   I think I have a photo of you dancing, on that memorable night in Dorset.  I can’t wait for your venerable observations, you chattersome Gemini.   Love fr jane

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www.panoramio.com, by pedro point

http://www.panoramio.com, by pedro point

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19 January
Into my morning space, haunted by squirmy gut, drops intrIguing offer. Most kind suggestion calls for response from this laziest of beings, when it comes to manufacture and broadcast of his emanations. I am most honoured to be thus prodded, and can happily supply you with wurkz old and new, as well as appropriate snaps, of which I posses many, so there be no need to drag forth fotos of bizarre blackmajickry under the greenwood trees of Hardy’s backyard, most particularly since I got no memory at all, of any such prancings among the yokelry.

But to be simple I dinna comprehend the meaning of this here “post” thing you proposeth, though I vizzalyze it well casting its long reflexion over your pool and impeding the crystal currents with its squat nether region. Yea I’m sure I agree, with gratitude and brass knobs on, but need a deeper understanding of how this post is approached, how it will look, and what it demands of me.

As you perceive my observations are hardly venerable yet, as my parts are presently pure, but given time they may acquire the necessary vintage and putrefact desirably.

Which brings to mind the announcement this day received that The Bard is about to imprint the holy dust of my neighbourhood with his esteeming presence, so I shall be dragged forth to receive his lofty Darshan, as he towers like some giant, scrawny monkey puzzle , eclipsing the diminutive form of the holy hill`.

Ah me! Oh yea, and the muddy lanes of Devon will no doubt “ooo arrr” as your comely person huffs with astonishing puffs between its unending hedges as combine harvesters bare their teeth and lurk round every corner, while Old Uncle Tom Cobleigh and all, lurch their way down the steepest, bestest bit for gathering momentum, linking arms with jugs in hand and flying smocks, as the sheep stare.
Kev

O yes, you old Kevvery - don't you remember this?

O yes, you old Kevvery – don’t you remember this?   That’s yo’ face yeti dancing.

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20 January
Esteemed Colleague,

Delighted about your spiritual exercises by the Holy Hill – along with the squitters, a healthy antidote to chomping on the Lotus in fair France, which was bound to bind you up.

Now Kev, here is what I have in mind.  A Post in a blog is simply an entry – the day’s musings or landfill – whatever.   But of course it can go on and on being added to:  for a Post is an ever lengthening scroll to the deep, an unbottomed and never ending Mystory.

Here is what I have in mind for me and ‘ee:  to offset the rather Serious atmosphere of me Pacific Posts, methought to plant a Merrie one, to cheerieup my patient Readers.  And I thought this post might be your and my plain wurdz back and forth, just as they are, beginning last week, and continuing:  coz I double over with joy at yours.   Each new item gets added to the bottom, dives deeper into the lake, needs just a finger-flick-fone for the curious to scroll it all …

We might get tired of it, or if it gets rather long, create its very own be-a-blog, which we both access from each side of La Manche, and put pictures in.  You might take the project over completely, and make it bristle with verse… That is up to u.  You might come to your senses and publish, you slothful scribe.

sailboat logbook

You asked I believe, what this yur post will look like, and where will be its squat nether end.  Well vizzilize a big pond, lake or pacific bristling with wind farms – they all are posts.  Here and there a noble ship sails in and out among them, piloted by Magellan or Cortez or a migrating Albatross.  Our little post will extract the michael and mind its own biziniss, and may become a popular port of call, particularly if you include Mr (for gawd) Sake’s observations on the Teaching Scene, while u are in Indiar.

photo by r.nial bradshaw

photo by r.nial bradshaw of posts in salt lake

I attach a draft with a few awful snaps.  I might attempt a passable sketch of a yeti.

Am enchanted that you shall see and be inspired by the Bard so very soon.

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dancing yeti in dorset

dancing yeti in dorset

20 January
Thanks for sending me your sample. I shall study it extensively before conveying it to the lab for professional analysis. How dare you resurrect the nauseating name of Sake, which I never requested though it may have generated some passing amusement among the hissing cauldrons which you shared with the lofty presence, as you popped in livers of pontificating swamis. I am well aware that Self Enquiry may have been scattered with pseudonyms to disguise the authorship of many dubious passages penned by the grey eminences, in an attempt to fool the 30 subscribing miserable seekers of NW3-6 that a plethora of bespectacled academics could be counted among the contributing lunes, but I have so far braved the attention of assassins in never seeking such masks to my reality, beyond the one I have long borne, which carries the much bemyred sobriquet of Kev, and with that I am content. So awa with such as Ma Tarocardananda or the new age Elvish Delvish of the Blackdowns, whom I presently address. Your Jane will never be plain to me. However when it comes to yetis, my fondness for my shaggy leaping hide still warms all the trembly parts of my soul, as I hop skip and polka before the holy hill, so occasional appearances of the.Himalayan bigfoot would not be unwelcome.

As I said I have some excellent snaps and can certainly provide the gorgeous yeti donated by my cartoonist brother.

But I should be amazed if such correspondence raised more than the occasional rarified eyebrow, among the divers necromancers, tea-leaf readers and other exotic fruits from your private tree of life, who must comprise the bulk of your readership, already soaked as they are by your daily voluminous brilliancy.

Thus I am honoured by your offer and pleasured to concur, though noting with displeasure the many typos among my previous offerings.
Love
Kev

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21 January
Dear Kev, I just happen to be up and unable to sleep – moan – but cheered by your twink.  Sake was offered only as a protective hide, but the Yeti’s is much better.  Well then, I await the lab results.  Much love xxx Jane

I go dancing too

I go dancing too

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Self-Inquiring R.I.P.

SE Penultimate issue

“Self Enquiry”, Penultimate issue

It was indeed a day of infamy when that Lady Chatterbox left her lovers and other glitterati of the spiritual universe rubbing their bewildered spectacles as their deluging weeps created a nouveau Saraswati to mingle its rarified tears with the nether reaches of the less salubrious but very Kosher meanderings of the Brent.

O weep and beat your inconsolable teats, all lovers of spiritual passions and other heats, lest we forget her ladyship, unburied yet and due to rise again when her creating organ, the chief necromancer, forsakes her unending beat, that adds each day another set of rings that newly tingalings the wrinkled foreheads of the tree of life.

mandala

mandala

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While Mistress Jane Attempts To Kip

Ah the wee small hours of West Hampstead,
when even the Jubilee Line slumbers,
as it meanders
the passing snores!
Where acres of cemetery
thrust monuments that grope for heavens
high as Whitestone Pond.
While worms sleep gentle sleeps
in many cloistered gardens,
well communally maintained,
beneath the central-heated walls,
well-hung with polished souvenirs,
nudging the heart from half-forgotten
terraces of long ago, before
the robberies inflicted
by more recent times,
that tower high above
the petty wounds
of self-inflicted crimes.

 

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dive spiral arunachala

dive spiral arunachala

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More poetry from Kevan …

Confessional-like

I really have nothing to say.
Been saying it for years,
but nobody hears
a thing

**

Happy Indiscretion

Ah the joy of wurdz,
where nothing makes a universe
and diamonds sprout from turdz.

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mike on a visit from holland

mike  – a very dear friend – on a visit from holland which is FLAT

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As dreams go by …

23 January – From Kevan: “Here attached find yetis …”

I love ‘em.  Those cuddly toys in ye mail.   The Hill must be doing you good (and the wurdz).  So shall I make a post at the weekend?  No hurry, just when you like.   Love, J

Yo, go ahead and carve yer post whenever you have a spare mo, but please check my do-dos for typos afore ye posteth as they can udderwize confyouse. Love Kev

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Dunsbear Halt on the Tarka Line Trail

Dunsbear Halt on the Tarka Line Trail

23 January
Yo, u Neti neti (arunachala generated), Yeti yeti, of course I willeth check yore spellings and notyets, I thought they might be done on purpose, I don’t meddle with Poet’s Purpose except I be given strikt instructions.  I can’t go to Devon Oo-arr this weekend, and indeed not till February, because the railway line from Taunton to Exeter is closed for repairs and the replacement buses don’t take bikes.  Love from Jane

PS Mr Sake is sacked.

alan jacobs and Kev

Alan Jacobs and Kev, in 2004

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24 January
Enough mit these excuses. Who needs train and bus when you could leap on your steed in west End Lane and start pedalling. These Adamses are a muscular lot with mighty shanks, just made for this kinda thing.

As foR typos, me deliberate unspellings are obvious, but typos confuse the head by usually missing a letter, reversing them or inside-outing them as dyslexic affect rather than failing wit-exercise. Would you like me to hi-itify some. Here comes an oldish one now: …

(and so forth.)

cows near buckland filleigh

cows near buckland filleigh

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24 January
Been delving among recent werkz and made some dubious improvements , which might lead you to chooze these newer vershuns, unless you feel advershuns, of coarse!  Kev

kevsyeti bw

 A Trespass On Your Moments

I have undone what I oughter have done
And there is no good in me
Under the sun, but that which has sprung
Out o’ my own unhoed earth.
Do I ask for praises unsung,
Songs to be sung
To commemorate
The strainings of my birth?
Rather I say forget it
Get on with your own undoings;
Love, as you will, your screwing
And unscrewing,
Under the ungod eyes
Of the skies of mirth.

Ah men! That we have become!
Ah, the becoming of the end
Of unbirth!
The dance of life
Pours through the snores
Of the blind-eyed conveyors
Of I-pads on their endless tube run
Into the blank.

May the skies split and run
As the sewn up of everything
Comes undone.
Let’s tear off the hoods
And run.

Kevan Myers

warrior high leg sun

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“Back hoe” that’s a JCB in Yankspeak

 Seems like “Front Hoe”
if there am, should wear
a kinda “Hiyo Silva” ‘n cut
this backward crap
cos hoeing up your backdays
seems to me to be
a little short on mileage,
even though, old Uncle Ho,
may be the ghost that lurks
at tunnel end,
if days along the furrow
trailing hoe
were lengthened out
to miles of the killing fields
of Napalmed ‘Nam.

groovin on that memorable night in dorset

groovin on that memorable night in dorset

Forgive my mind
that trespasses in lands
where any visitor
would once have opted for
the white stick of the blind.

I’m lost and wander off
so many tracks,
you cannot blame me
when my ankles land before my toes,
because I’ve yet to find
the way to open up
the eyeballs on my back.

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Back Again

The nothing was blessèd and long… ‘til dimly aware of the soft, warm liquid, and distant muffled sounds..strange roaring and words in another tongue…

I flinch and kick, and kick. Memories of pain of body..always pain..but more ..the tearing of thorns.. the agony  of wrists splintered and bored..trying to focus on love while shredded by hatred and the dumb hope of eyes not knowing what to with themselves, staring at what?

Let it be gone forever. Give me nothing, nothing, beautiful nothing.

Everything is intrusion in this nothing. Even this warm, safe pool that seems to be me.

I want no memories and no present. But this warm, liquid body of me will not obey, and now I am being forced inside out, squeezed and squeezed, driven out of myself, struggling and blinded.

Not again! Not again!

Kevan Myers

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general musings

general musings

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**

Poetry in this post is copyright (c) Kevan Myers.

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My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

aquariel link

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012-2014. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/

 

 

Human Landscape – a Holy Task of Self-Enquiry

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theatre arunachala j&d8

Following on my last post – a portrait of Alan Jacobs –  I abridge here a chapter we wrote together on “Diving into the Heart”.  This practice is at the core of Alan’s sadhana and devotion to Ramana Maharshi. The chapter appeared in a booklet we published in 1994, called The Holy Task.  After that …  another portrait gallery.

“In the inmost core, the Heart 
shines as Brahman alone 
as I … I, the Self aware. 
Enter deep into the Heart 
by search for Self, or diving deep, 
of with breath under check – 
thus abide ever in Atman.”

Ramana Maharshi in “Ramana Gita” by Ganapati Muni

This metrical verse that Ramana Maharshi himself translated from the Sanskrit original into English, is considered by many devotees to be the essence of his teaching.

Self-enquiry does not mean an endless analysis of the non-Self or personality, but a direct probing into the nature of Reality.  The actions and identifications of the personal ego are impartially witnessed, observed, noticed by normal self awareness, when we are not too carried away by external objects and events.

For those in the great majority – if we are honest with ourselves – who have not the strength of attention to hold the I thought in its source and investigate its movement, or who are riveted by the cares of the world, Ramana gave us a great aid:  the control of breath or pranayama.

In verses 28, 29 and 30 of the Forty Verses, he states,

butterlamp

As in a well of water deep, 
dive deep with Reason cleaving sharp. 
With speech, mind and breath restrained, 
exploring thus … discover the real source of ego-self. 

The mind through calm in deep plunge enquires.
That alone is real quest for the Self. 
“This I am” – “mine is not this” – 
these ideas help forward the quest.  

Get at the Heart within by search. 
the personal bows its head and falls. 
Then flashes forth another “I” … 
not personal, but the Self supreme.”

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The paradox of Self enquiry is that it is intimately transpersonal.  I substituted ‘personal’ for the word ‘ego’ which has variable interpretations.

Ardhanariswara

Ardhanariswara

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Alan extracted a technique based on a practice somewhat similar which he found in The Technique of Maha Yoga by N.R.Narayana Aiyar.  It is advisable to ground this practice in a working knowledge of pranayama (the science of breath), physiology, and one’s own innate capacity.

Sit on the floor, kneeling or at ease.  Take in a deep inhalation for four or eight counts (as Ramana explains in Self Enquiry), then hold the breath for another four, while turning inward. On the full retention, take the normal focus of concentration which is say, between the eyebrows, and implant it in the spiritual Heart centre just to the right side within the chest, mirroring the physical heart.  This is what Ramana experienced, and how he indicated it:  “Nam Yar – I, who?”   Visualise him inside, and feel this question.

Let it penetrate deeply through the veiling of the mind – which varies in resistance according to the play of the Gunas – into the innermost flame which shines in the cave of the Heart eternally.  It is one’s own, yet universal.  Allow the intuition of this source or beingness, to generate itself as I AM.  Or let go and discover it in the receptivity of the stillness itself.

We may find that the diver is “I” but the receptivity is “Amness”.

wave break

After the maximum penetration attained – perhaps four to eight counts –  release the breath gently; exhale.  The movement of the breath and the birth of thought are linked.  Restraint of the one quietens the other.  It might be said that prana is that essence of the indrawn and outgoing breath which becomes our awareness.

This practice may be repeated, depending on the practitioner, as often and wherever he or she wishes.  It will vary in depth and intensity, but no effort is in vain.  The power of concentration related to the harnessed breath will increase, and gradually over a period of time, awaken a subtle vibrance or sphurana within the chest and centre spine, a little to the right.  Though the Spiritual heart has no physical location, this area through Ramana’s own experience – and our own – serves as its point of support in the bodymind.   Continual practice benefits the nervous system overall, acting as an anchor for Self-remembering, and an instrument of change.

As a byproduct of diving into the Self, there may be a few observable changes in one’s attitudes and innate tendencies.  It is a radical procedure, bypassing the mental circus.

On exhalation, one lets go of the world, of darkness, fret and ignorance, like so many old clothes.  On inhaling deeply, it may be with some sacred silent image, a mantra sound, or any loved symbol of the Self.  On the retention, dive inward by letting the thought-world float away downstream from here;  immerse for a moment as if underwater, in being.  A sense of urgency may be brought to “who am I?” by thinking of one’s death.

clear sand exhale

The retention or kumbakha may also be practiced after exhaling and before inhaling, as the Technique of Maha Yoga suggests.  In this case, the analogy is with the tide going out;  an open sandy beach cleansed of impurities, before the incoming wave of inhalation.  In both methods, the root of the breath is watched, as it swells from ‘no where’.  We may dive into fullness, as into emptiness.  “The mind through calm in deep plunge, enquires.”

What does “to dive into the Self” mean?  It is to abide, to be calm and concept free, to be not drawn forth, yet present.  Ramana told Ganapati Muni, “Find out wherefrom this ‘I’ springs forth, and merge at its source, this is tapas.  Find out wherefrom the sound of the Mantra in japa (repetition of the divine Name) rises up, and merge there;  this is tapas.”   Nothing more.

Results should not be sought, for these are of the mind’s own machination.  When the inner and outer guru are ready, some direct understanding may occur, as a descent of grace strong enough to control the wandering thought, or as a pull from within – a lessening of interest in one’s worries, a tendency to bathe in the mystery of the Source;  to trust.

Our minds are very rajas, accustomed to straying outwards for many lifetimes.  Gradually as the inner guru pulls us from within, an alert dispassion develops.  We need to get to know and hear this inner guru!  It is a purifying process:  there may be some nervous “churning” as kundalini wakes, and the notion that the vasanas are increasing in strength.  Like silt stirred up from the river bed, ALL must come out to be impartially witnessed, in the light of awareness:  the worst along with the best.  Grace is given.

pearl fishers

At this stage, in Alan’s experience, to dive into the Self is beneficial and therapeutic.  It opens the way to an intenser God-love, or bhakti.  One should never strain in this act, nor let it be a mechanical chore.  Ramana’s general recommendation was to watch the natural breath without involvement, and to let the diving into the Heart happen of its own accord.  Sattvic or receptive moods encourage it;  as does the urgency of one’s death – “to love life, to do service and to die consciously”.  Our tiny effort mirrors the effortless and unimaginable power of the guru within.   The inner guru dispels the darkness, primordially.

We should also be properly informed first, about our physical and spiritual anatomy, and the science of kundalini.  There is no point in practising anything without a genuine interest in how it works.

bhagavan Ramana

Use strength without strain.  It is a non-verbal gesture inward, of enquiry and discrimination.  Paradoxically, the strength of the mind leads it to turn inward and surrender its own notions, like wheat to be harvested;  the grain to be bread.  “Who is this ‘me’ I’m so concerned about?”

When thoughts stray outward, impelled by preference, fear and political tendency, the mind is weak because it is unfocused.  A radical means is needed to pierce the veil of life.  In some persons, whose devotional calling is strong, the breath spontaneously slows and stills as they enquire;  without the pranayama.

We all have specific vasanas or inherited tendencies, for inner work and witnessing.  The nervous system – the network of nadis – must be gradually and systematically purified before the mental engine and all its predilections can safely approach its Source.  The diving is a preparatory and cleansing sadhana;  Atman the Self in due course takes over, and grips the mind, melting it into the heart;  one’s centre of being.

The inner guru pulls the outer circumstances of life in towards the Centre, gradually highlighting aids and techniques which help the quest;  and also the time for them to disappear.

Alan practiced diving and plunging as described, for some years.  He can honestly say that it helps his all round understanding.  It undermines the verbal or conceptual level towards a fuller Self surrender, and deeper insights into the teaching.  Ramana’s key  unlocked his prison.

inhale

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I have not practiced it for a long time, and it is about time I did!   However, the diving happens in many ways.  The secret is to engage an ancient Mantra or sound, with the living breath, instead of just repeating it verbally, or expecting it to do some magic for you.  The secret is to embody it and take it with you to pay the bills.

The resonance enters blood and bone, and returns transposed;  it is Alchemy.  For instance:  the sanskrit “SO (inhale) HAM” (exhale).   I remember doing this while hiking along the trails in Sedona;  Robert Adams taught it.   In Kabbalah, we inhale and exhale similarly the syllables of Angels and names of JHVH.   We bring them into our pranic being.

A long time ago, I linked the Tetragrammaton (JHVH) to the four lines of the tsarets Prayer of the Heart, and breathed them in and out.   I remember doing this on the puffer-train from Exeter to Barnstaple – a very beautiful winding valley.

But it takes practice and commitment, and these I have to say, I have lacked, in recent years.  I get overwhelmed by my local troubles.  The sign of an untrained and unfocused psyche is when she tries to push the sides of the train.

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GALLERY – more memories!

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When creating new Life – any spiritual practice – it needs to be given patience, love, attention, time and space.  Nothing grows in just a weekend.   Vera Moore, my old piano teacher, would have her students wrap each note like a baby in a shawl, and re-discover it with that tactile tenderness.

So I am glad to recall now, what Alan and I practiced together, and teased each other about, and argued and muddled along with.  Added to that, is the full palette of life, aging and … the way my understanding ripens since that time.   And his.  A lifetime is a parabola – a curve of manifestation:  Malkuth.

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holy men of tamil nadu

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**

My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

aquariel link

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012-2013. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/

Creation of the Sacred India Tarot Archive – The Royal Lotuses (1)

Aniruddha & Usha - photo credit Wikipedia

Aniruddha & Usha – photo credit Wikipedia

Another love-story among Siva’s meditations …

Sacred India Tarot 3 of lotuses - Version 2

Rohit’s Notes:  Aniruddha the Son of Pradayumna

“This is yet another Krishna clone, except for his extreme youth.  He was only sixteen when he heard the thousand armed King Bana had a daughter who had fallen in love with him.  He set off to win her, getting into all sorts of trouble from which he had to be rescued by Krishna and Pradayumna.  The volatile impetuous nature of extreme youth and extreme emotional susceptibility is what is sought to be conveyed here.  A very young Krishna type, hurtling along a river bank in a chariot, with a beautiful girl alongside him, would capture the card.”

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cb-skaa_large_1

Rohit’s Notes in The Sacred India Tarot book: 

“The Dwara reveals:  Aniruddha, grandson of Krishna and son of Pradhymna, is the archetypal dashing romantic hero.  He was a favourite of the royal palace at Dwaraka, and consequently he developed extreme confidence and panache.  Being abundantly talented and able, his high opinion of himself was not entirely unwarranted.  By the age of seventeeen, he was already one of the most desirable matrimonial catches of ancient India.  Usha the daughter of the neighbouring King Bana, seemed especially susceptible to his glamour, without even having seen him.

That was superfluous, as she had dreamt of him and got her friend to draw his accurate likeness! 

“The helpful friend inflamed Aniruddha with accounts of Usha’s fathomless love and certain languishing decline, if she did not soon wed him. 

“The young man sets off without even bothering to inform his family.  Usha and Aniruddha get married by the Gandharva ceremony – a marriage without the consent of parents, and solemnised by an exchange of garlands – for they are in a hurry to enjoy connubial bliss. 

desire..

Sacred India Tarot 4 of lotuses version 1 - Version 3

“When Bana comes to know his only daughter is hiding a young man in her room, he quite justifiably flares up.  The happy couple flee precipitously, but Bana, blessed with supernatural powers by Siva – a thousand arms being the least of them – overtakes them.  Aniruddha puts up a decent fight but is outclassed and taken prisoner.  Krishna and his father have to rescue him and reconcile Bana to the situation. 

“Bana has no real objections, once he cools down, but this heedless haste and dazzling disregard of the social proprieties makes his wrath excusable, as Krishna kindly points out to the young couple.” 

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Lord Krishna

Lord Krishna

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SITA The Chariot - detail

Sacred India Tarot Archive, The Chariot – detail

Jane’s Notes

The god Krishna, in the Vishnu lineage, enters the Sivaic Lotus Suit here, much as Vishnu and Siva interact among the snowy peaks and passes of Himalayan Garhwal – sources of the upper Ganges.  Krishna’s divine task is “to restore the Dharma” –  he descended with the forces of order through the epic chaos of civil war in the Mahabharatha.  Vishnu sustains Cosmic law.  Other offshoots of the Vishnu Archetype include Gautama Buddha and Yeshua son of Miriam.

Krishna was Aniruddha’s grandfather.  The elder generation are brought in as mediators:  the parents were too close to the emotional situation and “the done thing”, for clear sight.

Rohit’s interpretation of this card goes on to discriminate genuine new stages of emotional growth from muddled or scatter-brained romance … in other words, truth from delusion.  “Love or romance comes unasked into life.” Neither of the ardent young couple in the chariot are looking where they are going – they have eyes only for each other!  (See below)

Yet they are instruments of destiny, as they intuited before they even met.   The headlong force of destiny is captured in the river which flows down the valley from the mountains.  They awaken within the Lotus bud of the gods.

The marriage of Siva and Parvati in the Suit of Lotuses, eroticized the landscape on Earth among princes and fair maids.  A powerful mutual attraction generates much Karma and Drama, and rocks the boat – a task for the gods to sort out, indeed!

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The Sacred India Tarot - Page of Lotuses:  Aniruddha the son of Pradayumna

The Sacred India Tarot – Page of Lotuses: Aniruddha the son of Pradayumna – the completed card.

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What is the message here?  What Consciousness, or elixir, through the flow of events?

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Sketch of Stella Kramrisch - JA 2012

Sketch of Stella Kramrisch – JA 2012

Rudra Plunges into the Waters
by Prof. Stella Kramrisch, Princeton University Press 1981

A Commentary on texts from the Mahabharat,  Rig Veda  and Linga Purana. Here are some further extracts from Chapter Six of Stella Kramrisch’s scholarly and visionary work, The Presence of Siva.  (See in this series, Creation of Sacred India Tarot Archive – Ace of Lotuses and 6 of Lotuses).  Raudra Brahman,  or RUDRA the Wild Hunter,  was the original Vedic form of the god Siva and his fiery derivatives.  “He Emerges from the Poem of Ancient Power”.  A profound and paradoxical cosmic philosophy is reflected in Kramrisch’s cyclical style.

Rudra is primaeval.  The Presence standing behind the Myths of Siva, is woven through the stories of Siva and Parvati’s courtship in Sacred India Tarot’s Suit of Lotuses.

Tao and Time - Child Rudra-Siva

On Tao and Time – Child Rudra-Siva

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“TIME HAD been the antagonist of Rudra, who was at the very beginning the hunter and avenger.   But for this, the arrow of the hunter would have struck its target as soon as Rudra had noticed the Father’s behaviour.   The union of Father and daughter would have been prevented, and no seed would have been shed.

“In another sense, time cooperated with Agni-Rudra,  who had prepared the seed – its purpose being to be shed –  whereas time antagonized Rudra.   Time interposed itself between the intention of the hunter and his target, and made the arrow hit the target at the most vulnerable moment,  so that some of the seed was spilled and fell down to the earth.   Rudra, guardian of the Uncreate,  partakes of its timelessness,  but insofar as he played his part,  time itself meted out his actions.   Time carried his arrow at its own speed.   The guardians of the timeless Uncreate were overtaken by the delaying action of time.

“The transition from the Uncreate into creation, from timelessness into time,  is a danger zone.   The wound that Rudra inflicted causes havoc among the gods – from aeon to aeon.   But when Brahma was about to consume in a holocaust the cosmos he had created, the moment had come for Rudra to confront time and to infuse it with his being.

“Although time does not appear as a persona in the myth of the creation of death, its presence lurks in the urgency of the fire of total extinction born of Brahma’s wrath.

pebbles, somerset beach

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“STHANU the motionless pillar, moved – although quiescent – by pity for the creatures of Brahma threatened by total extinction,  begs him to grant them renewed life and the activity arising out of and alternating with death and quiescence.   For them, time will not end with death:  they will return after a period of quiescence in a new birth.   Time will carry them through repeated births and deaths to the end of the aeon.   Rudra’s time is a form of the Great God’s compassion for all creatures.

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[STHANU is the motionless pillar of all being.  Sthanu out of the quiescence of his stance, prevailed on Brahma the Creator of time and space.   Death and rebirth thenceforth came to be interwoven in the pattern of time, due to Sthanu’s compassion for creatures.]   

STHANU gives death its place in the renewal of life, a transpersonal life carrying the here and now in indefinite repetition to quiescence and a new beginning,  until the Great God absorbs in his dance of annihilation the uncounted rhythms he has released.  Charged by Brahma to create living beings, Rudra created immortals of deathless vitality before he turned into a motionless pillar,  self-contained in stillness.

Vastospati as Jyotish Guru;  Swan of Brahma

Vastospati as Jyotish Guru; Swan of Brahma

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“According to another tradition however, the Great Yogi carried out Brahma’s command to create living beings by plunging into the water and then by castrating himself when asked to produce creatures.   Saying at first that he was unable to produce creatures, Rudra plunged into the water.   He practiced tapas, austere in creative fervour,  over a long time.   Rudra, deeply immersed in the water,  was absorbed in the task to which he had responded according to his yogic nature,  believing that one without fervent austerities is not able to create creatures.   Full of expectation, Creator Brahma waited all that time.   Nothing happened, and Brahma turned to another being whose name was Daksa.   Brahma made Daksa the creator of all living beings.   Seeing Rudra immersed in the waters, Daksa his substitute created living creatures.   As soon as they were born, they ran toward him.   They were hungry and wanted to devour him.   Daksa turned to Brahma to protect him and to assign food for them.   Brahma gave the living creatures herbs and plants, and gave the weaker creatures as food for the stronger.   Brahma, the Puranic version of Prajapati the Father,  in creating Daksa, recreated himself.

“At last Rudra rose from the waters and saw the living creation.   At the sight he became angry, tore out his phallus and caused it to fall into the ground,  since no purpose would be served by it.   By his ardent exertion he had diffused his splendour into the waters, created the plants and healing herbs for all creatures.   The plants would multiply like those whose food they were to be.  Without them, the living beings would have died.   Cheerless and in rage, Rudra went to the foot of Mount Mujavat to practice asceticism.

“Rudra the Wild Hunter is Agni, Fire.   He plunged into the waters where life was generated by his heat, by the fervour of his asceticism.   The waters are Agni’s resting place, his secret refuge when he – like Rudra – is charged at the sacrifice with an onerous task to perform.   His flight from the sacrifice into the flowing waters is a withdrawal from action, a merging of himself in himself.

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Rudra Immerses

Rudra Immerses

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“Agni hides in the waters, but at other times he is seen,  a shaft of light from on high speeding to the shiny plane and resting there,  the pillar of heaven glowing like the sun.   It is the leg of the sun.   With its one foot it steps out of the beyond.  Thus its name is Aja Ekapad, the uncreate One-Foot.   The light from on high plunges into the waters – as Rudra did – and shines forth,  vibrating from the body of Rudra in solar and lunar rays.   Agni and the uncreate One-Foot merge the images of their light with that of Rudra.   Rudra, who is the very self of yoga,  is often described in terms of effulgent light.   Light is the progenitive power.   Bathed by the water, Rudra the young ascetic kindles the water with his creative fervour (tapas)  and life stirs.  Plants grow from the contact.   The plants will be the food of living creatures moving about on earth.

“When Rudra entered the waters, he was like that great wondrous presence that strode in creative fervour on the crest of the sea.   That mighty presence was a consecrated celibate, as Rudra is, young and ardent.   Absorbed in creative fervour, he stood in the sea,  in the ocean.   He shone on the earth.   He glowed with utmost inner exertion, the heat of creation.

Primrose Path - 1987

Primrose Path – 1987

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“These are likenesses of Rudra.   They are identical with him.   Agni and the uncreate One-Foot are cosmic figures.   The world of man however, lends the human figure to the consecrated celibate, a student who fervently exerts himself in mastering,  transmuting and transcending the psycho-physical body.  Rudra had sprung from the wrath of the Creator,  from the fury of his frustration.   … Though he was Brahma’s mind-born ascetic son, he accepted the paternal mandate and created life,  though not through procreation.   He plunged into the water, where the plants derived their nourishment from his presence.   They pass it on to man.   Rudra is “the food of the living beings everywhere.”

Stella Kramrisch,
“The Presence of Siva” – Princeton University Press 1981

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• The plant soul is pure, less individualised than those in the animal kingdom.

• Brahma is the Puranic form of Prajapati the Vedic Creator Father

• The immersion of Rudra’s fiery seed in the feminine waters harbingers the yogic intercourse/stillness of Siva and Parvati together as Ardhanarisvara,  lasting a thousand years.

• The daily Vedic chanting at Ramanasramam includes as it did in Ramana’s lifetime, the NANAKAM,  the Hymn to Bhagavan Rudra.   English translation is available in booklet form from Ramanasramam.

• Mythology has no rigid defining line.   Stories change a little with each generation of the telling, and through different angles of vision,  as water flows into itself.

J.A.


* See Ace of Lotuses:  for the mythology of the Father,  the Dawn,  and Rudra’s arrow  – He comes from the Poem of Ancient Power.

Sivalinga on Arunachala inner path

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Rohit Arya

Rohit Arya is an Author, Yogi and Polymath. He has written the first book on Vaastu to be published in the West, {translated into five languages} the first book on tarot to be published in India, co-authored a book on fire sacrifice, and is the creator of The Sacred India Tarot {82 card deck and book}. He has also written A Gathering of Gods. He is  a corporate trainer, a mythologist and vibrant speaker as well as an arts critic and cultural commentator. Rohit is also a Lineage Master in the Eight Spiritual Breaths system of Yoga. 

Earlier posts about the deck, including the first 15 Major Arcana archives are in http://aryayogi.wordpress.com   The deck is copyrighted (c) 2011 to the publishers, Yogi Impressions Books pvt, and available also on Amazon and internationally.

Jane Adams

My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

All original art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/

Today’s Sketches of Robert, Ramana and Ramesh

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Robert and seek

I discovered last night this beautiful photo on the web, to draw from:  Robert & Seek.  The photo is on a blog called http://itisnotreal.com

Robert’s parkinsons’ whisper, slightly nasal, and wide uncluttered eyes…

“Who am I? … I’m teaching you today a combination of bhakta and jnana.  Bhakta and Jnana – Devotion and Wisdom.  Think of your Heart centre in the right side of your chest and see the form of the deity that you love dearly. The form may be of Krishna, Jesus, Ramana, Moses, Mohammed or a Guru.  Inhale, say Lord – or Hari – exhale, say the name of the One you love and desire.

This is called using Name and Form.  It is an ancient tradition. 

If you are an atheist and don’t want to see anyone’s form, you can see LIGHT, pure light, in your Heart.  And you can chant to yourself, something like this:  “I am an open channel for the manifestation of all Good …”  Whatever your practice is, this is what you can do.  But you’ve got to do this, you’ve got to follow this, make it happen.

Then … “Who is the ‘I’ beyond this image?  Who is the ‘I’ that is seeing Christ, seeing Ramana?  Who is the ‘I’ that’s observing all these things?

“Who am I?”   Never answer that question!  Just pose the question to yourself … who am I?    … who am I? 

You will notice the thoughts will not come through again.  The thoughts have stopped.  You will no longer be bombarded by thoughts! like you were before.  For thinking of the Sage within your Self, has calmed you down tremendously.  Who am I … ?

If thoughts invade you again, go back to Ramana Maharshi in your heart.  Or Christ, or whoever.  See the image, (breathe in Hari,) repeat the Name.  Hari Ramana!   Hari Ramana! 

Then go back again to “Who am I?” … “Who am I?”

When approximately an hour has passed, get up and go about your business.  You will find that during the day something very interesting has happened to you.  You are filled with peace!  You’ve entered a different dimension.  Things that used to make you angry will stop.  Things that made you depressed, lonely, upset – have gone away.  You will feel fulfilment.  Do the same thing before you go to sleep.”

From transcript “The Method of Freedom”

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butterlamp

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Ramana & Arunachala children

The photo for this drawing was another “find” – this time on facebook – (Eraaramesh, thank you!)     Ramana and the little brothers and sisters … nephews?   I seem to recognise them.

A “revisit to India” is long due.  Drawing this, recaptured for me the luscious sights, sounds, smells and faces of Tamil Nadu – those waggling heads. Wonderful feeling.

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Not like a boat’s sail wide outspread 
and worn away by wind and weather, 
but like the humble anchor sunk 
in the vast ocean’s depth, the mind 
should plunge and settle in the heart 
of wisdom.

Garland of Guru’s Sayings by Muruganar
(Ramana’s conversations  set to verse.)

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Ramesh talks at home

Ramesh Balsekar talks at home, Sindula Building in Mumbai – his crowded lofty living-room.  I hear the sparrows and crows, and over the rooftops, the sea can just be seen.  He looks rather pensive in this sketch.  I would like to have got him more sharp and “pouncy” – his teaching style is like a falcon.   However, there were these inward moments also, particularly when the lady sitting next to him sang the bhajans at the end of a vigorous morning.  He closed his eyes then, and slowly tapped the rhythm.

Ramesh was rarely still.  He quivered like a racehorse:

“My concept is, that no action is anyone’s action … The input is:  God sends you a thought, over which you have no control … the brain reacts to that input and brings out an output, strictly according to the programming.  And that output over which Lawrence has no control, Lawrence says is HIS ACTION.  You see?  … From that deepest possible source, which is the Source itself, the question will arise:  If Lawrence doesn’t do any action, WHO IS LAWRENCE?  WHO AM I?  

“But the big difference is, that it is not the intellect which asks the question.  The question ARISES from personal experience that Lawrence doesn’t do anything.  Lawrence doesn’t act – therefore who is Lawrence?  Then the question arises FROM THE VERY DEPTHS OF YOUR BEING, into which Ramana asks you to dive – ‘If I don’t do any actions, who am I?’ 

“And then again, if it is God’s will or grace, and the destiny of that bodymind organism, FROM that very Source from which the question arose, will arise the answer:  there really is no Lawrence.  There never has been any Lawrence, other than the name given to this bodymind organism.  You see?  And as far as my concept goes, that is the only sadhana or effort necessary.  That is my interpretation of Ramana Maharshi’s query “who am I?” 

That is my answer, Lawrence, to the question, the burning question which everybody has:  How do I go about this Self enquiry, if this Self enquiry is not a mantra and not an intellectual question?

From a conversation with Lawrence Bentley

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butterlamp boat

A butterlamp at dawn

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My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books).  Watch this space.

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/

More Sketches of Ramana & Advaitins

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From the mountain which is a humanity, rivers flow, sculpting ridges, valleys and relationships.  The young Ramana scampered all over the mountain like a goat.  As he grew old, he became its teacher.

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Mani and Sundaram greet visitors at Ramanasramam

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3 Sunyata - a Danish devotee

Sunyata, (Emanuel Sorensen) a Danish sadhu, with his Tibetan dog Sri Cho Chu Wuj.  He wrote:

“In this life play I have not been in quest of Guru, God, Truth, Grace, Salvation, nirvana, or power lust.  I had no ambition to be different from what I am.

“Blessedly, I had escaped headucation, and was free of any imposed knowledge. I had no property.

“I did not marry. I did not belong to any cliques or creed. I was not attracted to their magnetism.

“I felt all is within our Self.  I had nothing to assert or resent.  Nor had I anything to boast about or regret.

I was fully contented.
I had joy in that which is.”

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Catherine Ingram on her first teaching visit to London.  Poonjaji of Lucknow liberated her strong Buddhist practice to “dialogue the dharma” around the world, watching storms in the clear sky.   We don’t run from the pain and breaking heart of life.   We witness and keep quiet with it, hearing it speak, seeking the true, as it begins to flow and the cloud dissolves.   “Let our words” said she, like a Taoist – “be well placed stones.”

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Isaac Shapiro, another of Poonjaji’s earlier Western messengers:  Satsang, company of the wise and merry in the Self.

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Papaji:  Peace

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Harilal Poonja

This is how I imagine him as a young man.  I didn’t meet Papaji, but knew some of his messengers.   The three volumes of “Nothing Ever Happened” which he dictated to David Godman, narrate his long and adventurous life as a yogi, siddha and modern master.  In his travels he helped countless people to become aware of ‘the impersonal reality that underlies the world and all phenomenal experiences”.  Often he was a “mystery man”, appearing on the mountain, on a train or in the jungle.  Young westerners adored him, and he as a bhakta couldn’t help falling in love with their Self.  His diaries explore the guru disciple relationship.

Ramana with Poonjaji and a devotee

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It is amazing how much the Advaita people like to talk.

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Mouni Sadhu from the western occult tradition, visits Ramana “In Days of Great Peace”.

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Spreading the good news – V.Ganesan, founder-editor (with Arthur Osborne) of Ramanasramam Journal The Mountain Path

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This is Ranjit Maharaj of Mumbai;  he and Nisargadatta Maharaj (Ramesh’s teacher) were initiates from another old Advaita lineage, which flowed fruitfully alongside Ramana and the Hill.  I have many drawings of Ranjit, because once I was commissioned by some of his devotees in America, to do a portrait of him … and none of my efforts to draw their beloved guru were successful in their eyes.

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Ramesh Talks

Sketches from life of Ramesh Balekar – these appeared in an earlier post, I think;  certainly the one on the right.   But they speak well enough, here.

 Out of a pile of newsletters fell Ramesh’s devotee Wayne, the other day …

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and here are Douglas and Catherine Harding built open for each other, exchanging billets-doux of the Obvious.

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From Papaji’s “stable” – Bernardo (Satyananda) enjoying a good meal at Osho Leela in Dorset, and …

Neelam, who gave him a name to sign his letters with.

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My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

Roads to Enlightenment – Butter Cooking … (2)

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When their sunny sister arrived in London England – all the way from the southern States, via the Ganges and Arunachala – Mrs Bhattapanjali and Mrs Bhattacharya (see below) jingled their bangles and begged her to join them for a Kettle for ever.   “How do you call yourself?” they asked.  “Why my dears – I’m just Mrs Buttercookie!” said she, a little shy.

Here is a reminder of the Mrs Bs’ Great Work with the men in their lives.   (see earlier post, Buttercookies).  You can see the men in the background.  Snake and Bull – referred to as The Livestock – are troubled by other ladies of fixed address in their lives,  known as the Bottle and the Jigsaw.    Mrs Bhattacharya and Mrs Bhattapanjali’s daily spiritual practice with this problem, is to polish it patiently.

As the jigsaw pieces come together, Arunachala merges with the Tyrolean Alps.

The kettle (as carried around by a certain old gentleman in India with a walking stick) steams merrily with this, and with the difficulty of Self enquiry when trying to be suave …

A magickal opportunity to bridge the mystic east and west was bungled, when poor Mrs Bhattapanjali’s stop-the-clock with her own Dad – that buried emotional Krishnamurti Stuff –  morphed into the two distinguished esoteric Traditions … desiring them both to think well of her and of each other.

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To comfort themselves, and to keep their Livestock safe among marauding  jigsaw puzzles and slave-driving bottles, the Mrs Bs would tell this bedtime story:

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Both gentlemens’ horoscopes had difficulties with Cheiron the Wounded Healer in the Dragons’ Head.  They needed tlc as well as tea.

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Our real teachers are our children.  Mrs Bhattacharya has a son – a fine young man.  In those far off days of 1994, only the very young were clued to the Greater Mystery of networking and mobile phones.

Nickmack taught Mrs Bhattapanjali abc on the old mac Classic in his laidback way.  She made slow but steady progress with her Self Enquiry Journal UK, and never looked back.

Mrs B has a daughter, known as ‘Er Upstairs’ – there she is, up on the roof with headphones – a splendid young person, whose Road to Enlightenment, aloof from Mum’s “I … I …”  carnival …

… has an elevated way with cats.

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Several years later, there arrived into the London scene, fresh from the Sedona method  …

… on the Enlightenment road in India …

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… all the way to London stopover on a rainy day …

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for the album …

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and on the Path …

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shedding Light and grace and charm wherever she goes …

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…  Self Realising …

… from Strength to Strength!

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Lord Siva on his tao

Alas, Mrs Buttercookie returned to Sedona. So life in England was never the same again, but went on as before:

Holy men in Tamil Nadu – Ramana with fellow students of Self, including Kunjuswami, Chinnaswami, Cow Lakshmi, Annamalaiswami and Muruganar.

To be Continued://

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Parc y Meirw: The Field of the Dead

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Coastal Path 1991 Series – Part Three

This is a large post, which has been some time waiting.  It arose from within my  Coastal Path terrain.  It was a channeling.  It remained my major milestone, because after writing it all down, I found myself in a different place from when I began.  With it came some understanding with Ramana Maharshi’s astrology.   See also (river water, stone, nodes) my 18 July post “Portraits & Poems of Eclipse for Ramesh – a Revision

(1)  A Meditation on Eclipse

(2)  Ramana Maharshi’s Horoscope:  eclipse, darshan and mutual reception

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(1) ON ECLIPSE August 1991

IT IS about 9.30 on an August evening in Pembrokeshire, South Wales, and darkness has gathered.  There is not time to reach the top of Carn Enoc, whose tump stands proud upon the dark round breast of the hill above me.  Carn Enoc is a rocky tumulus marking the central or half way point of the St Davids-to-Cardigan ley-line, and very very old.  Tonight I have to return to London.  My tent and belongings are stashed at a friendly snack-bar at the Harbour station in Fishguard, and this is my final expedition, pedaling up the dark Gwaun Valley – where they still keep the old calender: deep fissures in the landscape, unchanging –  to the open hillside.  The legs have had enough.  The bike lies on the grass by the hedge, for I have at last found an ancient site to “travel home about”!  A row of four giant standing stones broods along the hedge, two of them marking the gate posts.

This is the Stone Row of Parc y Meirw, the FIELD OF THE DEAD.

(The portal.  In the background, far left, are Fishguard Harbour and the distant hill near Pyllderi and Strumble Head.  Photo from http://www.megalithic.co.uk)

The sky has that strange radiance of early night that shimmers somewhere between violet and green, and the Moon has risen over the tense and sleeping field of grass, dazzling white and gold.  She is in her first Quarter at the end of Scorpio, so she is one-half of a seed.  “Harvest Moon!” I quote, as I greet each silent stone.

Two months later … October 1991

My guide-book, the Pembrokeshire Explorer, tells me that this row of stones is an astronomic tool for predicting solar and lunar eclipses, which it does with pin-point sensitivity.  It lines up with the summit of Mount Leinster 91 miles away over the sea in the Irish Wicklow hills.  When the Moon setting appears to slip down the righthand side of Mount Leinster, there will next day be here in South Wales a solar eclipse if it is near New moon, or a lunar eclipse if Full.

The priests who exercised this knowledge measured many other phenomena of the world.  It seems to me, this line of stones is positioned in precise angular relationship also to the tumuli on the hill of Enoc, for the fruit of other observations.

Enoch in the Old Testament was He who walked with God.  “And he was not, for the Lord took him.”  The Celtic version of this name is Enoc, or “cone” backwards.  Here’s a co-ordinate for inner reflection, because much Hermetic power is lodged in these syllables.  The stone circles in this country are felt to be contemporaneous with the Pyramids.   Their builders, as those in Egypt, tapped fields of magnetic energy in Earth, focused stellar and luminary observation with the infinite reach of the human spirit, and guarded these openings of the oracular sciences with rings of negative ions to keep away unwary fools.  For they worked in fields outside time.  The bulk of their activity is invisible in the temporal and historical context.   It enabled them to See.

If you are a druid or seer, and you step through the portal into the field of your profession, no outsider can perceive your tools or what they invoke;  because you enter the ‘standing’ current of the electro-magnetic field.  And if you are, say, an ancient Atlantean, you are wise to leave no tangible trace of your knowledge, for the structure of the atom is potentially lethal to those who are merely curious or hungry for power.  You enter the field of operations where Time is not.  The work is an intimate relationship with the local climate, as with planets of the Solar universe which encircle their nucleus.  When each phase of this work is done, you “close down:” to ensure no unlawful spillage.  You keep away trespassers with rings of repellent power – it sends them to sleep.

It is thought that the magi of ancient times practiced a technology which integrated static electricity with  the prana or breath of Oriental teaching.  With it they could influence the relative weight of quarried stone, so as to transport its mass to a sacred site.  The laser focus of the spirit, entering the heart of the electro-magnetic field, can alter and manipulate its relative densities.  The prana is vital cosmic current, as intercepted by each individual organism.  That is to say, the prana breathes the individual, not the other way round.  My outbreath is the inhalation of cosmic prana;  and when I breathe in, the ALL exhales into me and gives me life.   Thus JHVH breathed out into clay to form ADAM:  this word means Earth.

And so I seem to see these great stones transported substantially – though with token physical effort and organization – upon a cushion of this vital prana or cosmic breath, like a modern hovercraft, or a floating raft of logs to roll it down the river.  Dark blue stones from the Preseli Hills near here were transported to Wiltshire, to build Stone Henge.

Various experiments have demonstrated that a person in a state of deep concentration becomes physically less dense – that is, actually lighter.  If he or she sits in a chair, four friends with a spontaneous concert of will, can easily raise him up with their fingertips – this I have tried, and seen for myself.  The relationship between gravity and the vital current is less predictable than it seems.  A meditator rises.  Isn’t it astonishing how lightly our physical body can be taken upstairs, a pair of lovers flip positions,  a gesture flow like water through an arm, a dancer through one small equilibrating movement?  Only the molecular substance of flesh, fluid, muscle, is inert – or death to the dance within the atom.

The forgotten yet simple skill could enter the dense gravitational field of stone, and let “I’ become its vital sub-atomic current;  here we have a concentration of material which, when conscious, changes its weight.  The stone may be made to move with the living coordinate.

Dattatreya, the Guru of Nature, the elements, and every day  

So also, we have sculpture, the forms and presences of the gods.  We have the Gothic cathedrals of the Templars, in which mass converts to light.  The density, the groundweight of the flying buttresses to each side, maintains the opening of the ogive or soaring arch, taut as a musical string.  Feel the vault of Chartres, how it opens upward like the bud of a flower.  The buttresses and pillars are guylines.  They peg its soaring tabernacle to earth.  The Masonic science of the arch does not lean-to upon itself.  It keeps the art of light, of birth, just opening outward, like the bud, like fingertips in prayer which touch.  The gravitational pull is inverted:  stone is pulled heavenwards, like the way our spine lifts in the Alexander technique.  And so you go in, and you open your eyes from the ground.

This is an example of how the gross weight of stone converts to consciousness – a temple which cannot decay or fall.  The cathedrals were built along the same principles as the stone circles – using pegs and lengths of string to mark out interlacing circles and their vesica pisces.  The Master gave the architect a sacred blueprint.  Solomon’s wisdom entered the rock.

 Seven branch Star

Old tales around more ancient stone circles are told:  at Rollright, some of the stones from the circle of silence “travel” down to the stream at dead of night, to drink.  Water and stone.  Moses struck the rock with his staff of authority (priesthood, the meaning of Aaron) and the water of life came forth.  This water is consciousness.  The staff is the Rod.  During the initiation of Moses, JHVH said to him “What is that in your hand?”  Moses replied, “a rod”.  And JHVH said “Cast it upon the ground.”  So he cast it on the ground, and it became a serpent, and Moses fled from it.  But JHVH said to Moses “Put out your hand and take it by the tail.”  So he put out his hand and caught it, and it became a ROD in his hand.

Polarity –  triple staff/caduceus

 The rod, in Tarot (a spelling of Torah, the Law) sprouts and becomes the Suit of Wands.

 Polarity – Mercury, staff, mandorla

The Serpent power or kundalini, of Yoga, is likewise the vital current through Earth’s ley-lines or subtle conduits.  It runs through the meridians of acupuncture in ancient medicine.  It is called in many cultures, the Dragon which encircles and defends the gold or the Grail, and has to be tamed and subdued.  Every site of sacred power, every mound, tower or ring of stones along a ley-line, is an outlet of the Dragon.  Legends of the saints who did battle with Dragons, are tales of those who were learning to master their own raw unconscious.  They learned to spear the visionary ego at every outlet of sacred science.

(The root of this word “science”, is knowledge.  Self knowledge.  When dogmatic, it becomes an organised religion, whatever the white coat it wears may believe.)

Polarity – Nodal ourobouros

 The same Serpent power is the ascending and descending Node of the Moon.   At these antipodeal points north and south of the Equator, the lunar orbit around Earth intersects Earth’s orbit around the Sun.  The Nodes are known as the Dragons Head (north of equator) and Tail (south).   Their position on the ecliptic moves clockwise or “retrograde” around the zodiac, taking just over eighteen-and-a-half years to complete a full circle.  The Serpent in a circle devours its own tail.  If you are able to take your Dragon by the tail – the tension which is coiled up in old habits and reaction – and let that river of power straighten … you flow with your Dragon’s Head or ascending Node, to create new fields of reality.  You may be used like Moses, as an instrument.  Your destiny may materialize in or as a tide of history.  Or, to use another analogy, an old wound may heal.  The healer’s art, like the priestly chrism or power, taps into this Nodal electricity.

In yoga, the serpent – encompassing a dimension beyond that discussed – is coiled at the base of the subtle spine at the root chakra, like a wheel.   She is led to rise, straighten and open through five intermediary chakras or wheels up the subtle spine, to the “wheel” of the thousand petalled Lotus at the Crown.  The Eastern snake is thus charmed up through seven  chakras of the body.  The coiled serpent at the base of the spine – our plant stem – is the root, deep in dark earth.  When it is purified and naturally uncoils like a fern in spring, the “white” current flows without impediment, like a laser beam.

Chakra

The word chakra means “wheel”.  The chakras are waves which emanate concentrically from their subtle centre.  Karma – the inertia-momentum of action – is similarly a centrifugal coagulation of an impulse around itself.  The impulse traveling outward cools, forming the ego, I-story or crust of the world.  The hub of the wheel is motionless, around which all spins, all radiates, all consolidates and changes.  The hub of the wheel is its heart, its secret fire – magma in the roots and veins of Earth.

Solar eclipse takes place when the New Moon is conjunct to the Sun along a precise alignment of lunar and terrestrial orbital paths.   The Moon’s disk which is normally effaced during this moment in the greater light, then moves across the face of the Sun, cutting off its light.  For a short time, a small portion on the day-time hemisphere of Earth then experiences partial or total eclipse – darkness.

Rahu northnode 2. ( For earlier version of these two drawings, see my post “Sacred India Tarot :  Creation of Chandra the Moon, 18 August”)

Lunar eclipse happens when the Full Moon is in opposition to the Sun along a precise alignment of lunar and terrestrial orbital paths.  The Moon is then exactly the other side of the Earth.  The Dragon as Earth’s own shadow eats or extinguishes the light of the illumined full Moon at night.

 Ketu northnode 2

To our “two eyes” of Earth, the indescribable vast discrepancy in the actual size and distance between the two lights, appears as two “pennies” the same size in the sky … whose periods regulate our life.   Isis and Osiris, in long ago Egypt, portray the cycles and the phases of the light, as Earth’s axis tilts around the sun.

Only an act of inward imagination can begin to differentiate the star – its size, depth and unending radiant centre – from the mirror of its cool earthbound satellite.  Our coinage is the surface or apparent measure of things.  The root of the Sanskrit word maya is ma – to measure:  the skill or art of measuring the immeasurable, thus an impossible feat.

Light is our protection.  When the light is eaten up by an approaching shadow, a hole or opening of darkness is created in the psyche.  At this time, some signal enters through a blind eye and takes root.  It seems the magnetic field of Earth is particularly vulnerable or sensitive at these fluid points where the planes of our sun and moon may merge.  It loses during eclipse, a screen.  An unpredictable cosmic current or ray may enter this nodal channel, engendering a clairvoyance of darkness or of unknown quantity.  And so, open to sinister interpretation, the eclipse would often portend flood, invasion or plague.

Cosmos

Eclipse may equally prophesy the coming – like a thief in the night – of a saviour or Kingdom of righteousness.  Light has a subtle and furtive way of creeping up on the disciple.  The zen method disorients his three-dimensional habit or view of the world by means of koans or mental paradox – “to hear the sound of one hand clapping”.  Wisdom does come like a thief in the night.  It is not a parade of visions or anything to boast about.  Wisdom removes vainglory.

An accurate prediction of an eclipse issues a warning to citizens and farmers and kings to see to their psychic and physical defenses and make sure there is some reserve in the granary.  But an initiate receives a visiting card – an increment of Reality abiding beyond the known co-ordinates of space and time.

Orbits 1988

 An image of this arises as I write –  a convexity which is actually a concavity.  Something which appears to be solid, yields infinite and vertiginous space.  A wall of darkness is a channel.  The river may be read to flow in both or all directions.  The planes of the worlds dissolve.  The matrix of reality fragments, like torn shreds of paper on which a story is written.  And through the floating and faded static of those white shreds with black signs, appears the unknown field of yet some Being other.  Time on a clock ticks regularly.  But sometimes it seems each tick stops around itself.  Then everything bursts into a slow motion sneeze.  There is no end.  No beginning:  and thus no progression.  The shreds of white paper with the pattern of the writing breaking apart, were a molecular skin or surface to watery element immeasurably deep, and this molecular lattice is flaking away …  like the skin of a snake.

Chronos in rings and DNA, 1988

 Snake.  Water and Stone.

Look into the eyes and stillness of the snake.

Look into a river flowing by.

The strange solid fluence of the water is a wall of itself.

What is this, but a flow of stone?

 kundalini shakti, 1988

The nature of flowing water is a very great mystery to me, looking into it, placing my hand down into it.  The whole river, the wall of it cold, metallic, sings every shining living contour of stone over stones.

The song and substance never ends and never begins.

Yet everything can be dropped into it.

A path of gravity or falling object, cross-sections one instant of Time through the wholeness of the river which is timeless – the fourth dimension.  Our world, our story, our vortex, is a minuscule fraction of the river, an instant.

Lovers at Buckland Filleigh

River through woodland.  River through countries.

River, dark and secret, dark brown is the river, golden is the sand;  and put your ear to the ground.

Where does the snake “really” begin or end?

You cannot say, for the snake is not his head or tail, but the ripple along all his atoms over the earth.

Now take him by the tail.  How that ripple writhes the whiplash, body and soul!

Yet I AM the body of this snake, straight and true, for I wrestled the Angel, and became the source.

I am then always, all ways.

To use an old expression, we flip as “Heads and Tails” for destiny, the currency of sun and moon on the back of our hand which is earth.  The Dragon describes a circle of 18.6 years around the zodiacal ecliptic.  At his tail south of equator, he depletes his vital force;  and at his head north of equator in the antipodeal or complementary zodiac sign, he restores it.  Head to tail is a flow of nectar nourished by the earth:  union.  The Dragon’s Head is “turned towards” the sun or source-light.  The Tail is empowered by the akasic residues or past-life memory – that is, reflected or lunar light.

Dinosaur egg

In the old lore, the Dragon bites and eats up the Sun and Moon.  This dragon of the earth is a black hole in the sky.  And they must make much noise with the beating of drums and shouting and dancing, to frighten him away and let the maidenly lights come free.  When there is no eclipse, the plane of Moon’s terriestrial orbit tilts across Earth’s solar orbit.  Where the planes intersect is called the Node, north and south of the equator.

At a time of potential eclipse, the lunar orbit merges and comes to rest upon that of Earth’s own journey around the Sun.  Sun, Moon and Earth lie then along one identical plane.  The teaching seems to be of non-differentiation:  Unicity:  the underlying circling of all things.  Those things which are different have melted or emerged into those which are the same thing.  The resonance of the worlds is one note upon a string.  But like the monitor of a failed heart, it registers no blip, no pulse.

Circumpunct

This, to the life of the personal mind, which thrives on the differences of all notes, orbital planes and operatics in relation to one another, is DEATH.  It is anathema.  It is very frightening.  The sky is livid.  We don’t want this unity, this expiry, this harmony of silence.  So we must sing and dance and put on the electrodes, perform an intensive-care of disturbance and distraction, wake it up, get it moving, jolt.  Frighten away that intensely transcendent and all enveloping existence consciousness, inimical to the local livelihood of life.  Move the electric spark.  Move it.

And the body re-emerges and fights on.

Yes:  for our light is our life’s wavelength, its spark of warmth and sentience.  Earth is the blanket which shrouds the light;  the shadow of Earth.

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Out here in the Field of the Dead, upon the whitened grass, the Node where orbital planes cross and incite eachother, is the Dragon’s quiver:  the friction of ascending and descending current.  So also do violent ascending currents of warm air colliding with banked droplets of water release thunder and lightning, opening the heavens.  In an aeon of falling rain in our planet’s “pre-history”, here’s a glimpse of the origin of life.  Organic life comes forth in the rub of it, a spark of Genesis into the clay.

O angel

Rainbows.  Consider now rainbows, how they are made;  the crock at the end of the rainbow, ungrasped.  Clay is the vessel.  Gold grows there through the coloured prism of rain and sun.  So long as we seek it over there, so long it lightly laughs and mirages us.

Snake.  Water.  Stone.

Stone is the metal of living Earth, polarized to her magnetic field.

When a homeopathic remedy or essence is repeatedly diluted, its molecular substance dissolves to an atomic potency – like the dissolution of the I-thought into the Self.  Ramana Maharshi said:  “All know that the drop merges into the ocean, but few know that the ocean merges into the drop.”

So it is with the magnetic property of stone.  The blood of stone is her metallic vein; an ore extracted from Earth has a measurable pulse or current.  But in stone as a whole, non specialized, the current is diluted to quintessence – to a subtle trace.

The soul of humankind might enter the soul of Stone, if attuned to the quanta of its auric field.  There could be a fluid exchange of relative densities for certain concentrated purposes.  I somehow feel this is so, and is a forgotten art.  From the core of stone’s atomic lattice, there emanates like a flower’s scent, a wave.  Like the blood of a snake the heart of stone becomes warm in sunlight, and seems to pulsate like an egg.  This intuits throughout our subatomic world an unobstructed intercourse of all things – a potency.  Eclipse of Sun or Moon in the Field of the Dead, is a key to this understanding.  It affects subliminally the polar bias in the stone.  The worlds, the elements, may enter one another at this time.  “Oh, ye are Men of Stone!”

Loaves and Fishes

Water conducts electricity.  If you are damp the shock is greater.  Water conducts the current between the lights, male and female.  The Snake is a coil of copper wire.  The copper-serpent has minimal resistance to the flow of ions or current.  It is coiled tightly around a magnet to amplify the positive and negative polarity, and generate power.  It coils around the rock.  An electro magnetic wave is like a concentric ripple traveling through water into which a pebble or leaf is dropped;  like rings of time around the golden core of a tree.   Travelling in every direction from source, a round-wave harnessed into a two-way cable or filament manifests as heat, as sound …  or as a body (with all our history!)  In the vein, that wave registers the pulsation of the poles.  It spirals through transformers condensing the charge.  The “resistor” is thrown into high relief and specialization in a series of interactions.  Voltage channeled along a high-tension conduit is converted into available gross energy, such as speech.  (See my 21 August post, Odds and Logs, near the drawing of Dakshinamurti.)

Electro magnet ’88

Yet I sense that the power which has not been harnessed, but quietly emanates and flowers is, though subtle, infinitely greater.  It  encountered no “resistors” to slow it down into manifestation.  It has no sheath, cable or garment.  The multiple conduits in the biological, mental and industrialized world are of a very different order from the emanation pure in Spirit.  But it requires a refined and purified perception to realize this.

The stone is still and compact, a composition of space.  The atomic lattice is dense, and yet infinitely spacious:  it is.  It has a primordial emanation.

It is like one who sits very quiet, very awake, very still.  At Eclipse.

In esoteric parlance, evolutionary souls form an astral “copper serpent” or subtle collective body – a powerful tool or symbol of redemption.  Moses revealed it through the Rod to the children of Israel.  Jesus – JHShVH – surrendered himself on a cross of four elements – JHVH – and was resurrected from the tomb of rock, through this medium.  It comes to the aid of awakening between incarnations, and thus between all the lines of life;  and every time our thought falls silent.  There are and have been always bodhisattvas who offer or train their body to channel the Copper-serpent.  They gave to it their vital force, not mere lip-service or worship.   They recognize the cross, the lamb of God and the tomb which opened like a mother’s thighs, as the process here and how, spiritually and psychologically, unfolds.

Copper is the metal which is ruled by Venus.  In the highest spectrum, this is Love.

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 In the Beginning … (granite rocks from St Agnes, Isles of Scilly) 

So here I stand at night in this Field of Death.

I am opening to sky and tall grey stones, and dance a little because I am happy or moved, but otherwise unaware that such a stream of ideas is storing itself to later flow through my recall of being here, when I start to write it down.

I register my surroundings, the Moon in the clear sky, a possible relation of the site to Carn Enoc itself, and the vague hearsay that this line of Stones was used to measure the eclipse.  That is all.  This sounded interesting, and drew me here to get a feel of it.  I have no idea what I am investigating, if anything;  I am simply pleased to be here, it was a tiring bike ride up the Gwaun valley, and perhaps “they” will tell me something if I am quiet for a few moments and put my ear to them, each one.

The Pembrokeshire Explorer mentions an old folk tale of the Ladi Wen – the White Lady.  She wandered white about these fields at night.  For thousands of years it was enough to know that she would kill any fool who strayed near the plain grey giants.  “She wanders far and wide in her monthly journeying about the sky;  wayward, she returns to her original resting place only once every 18.6 years.”

The great stones rise like sentinels from a banked hedge.  There are four of them, and they are rather curiously squared-off.  I did not stay for very long, but I put my ear to three of them for a moment.  The place is remote, with a narrow lane running by the field.  Before farmland tamed and desensitized it, this could have been a place of power that strings of generations might shun.  The contour is broad and bleak.  The half-moon sheds a Scorpionic witch’s intensity over the entranced field.  The slopes fall away into the steep dark dells of the Gwaun valley where (I’m told) they still keep the old Roman calender.  And the eye is drawn upwards and along the skyline to the stark tumulus of Carn Enoc about a mile away.

“Enoch walked with God;  and he was not, for God took him.”  (Genesis Chapter 5)

Then Enoch (whom some say is Thoth, the  higher Mind of Egypt) dissolved into the plane of God.  His hill here is used to measure the eclipse.

 A Capricorn glyph – a hermetic Divinity

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(2) RAMANA’S HOROSCOPE

“One who sits very quiet, awake and still. At eclipse.”

“His face is like the face of water, always changing, yet always the same. It is amazing how swiftly it moves from gentleness to rock-like grandeur, from laughter to compassion.  So complete does each successive aspect live, that one feels it is not one man’s face, but the face of mankind.”

Arthur Osborne

(See “Visit  to Arunachala 1993”, 22 June 2012 post)

17 October 1991

I did not know, during my visit to the Field of the Dead – (the Book of Unity?) – that I was about to hear a lesson about the solar and lunar ecliptic plane particularly relevant to my discovery of the teaching.  After I got back to London, I found out that when Ramana Maharshi was born, his Sun and Moon, in Capricorn and Cancer respectively, lay along the lunar Nodes.

This looked most interesting, and was further emphasized by his axis of Will or Midheaven in the same place.  I was enchanted to see this, being a new devotee, and myself a solar Capricorn and lunar Cancer.

I’m slow to comprehend things, and only today – more than a month later – the penny drops.  I have not investigated the geometry of eclipse before.  But as I wrote all this yesterday, (see previous pages) I vaguely remembered seeing something.  On a hunch I got out Ramana’s horoscope, to check.

(This is of course, a western or “tropical” chart – Earth’s orbit around the sun, within the Solar System – and identified with seasonal archetypes.  The Indian Jyotish zodiac is projected upon the actual constellations and their archetypes, outside the Solar System.  Due to precession of the equinox over the last few thousand years,  a 26-degree gap widens.  In Jyotish, Ramana is  in Sagittarius, with his planets placed accordingly.  In practice, the two systems differ in emphasis and cultural nuance, but the character reading adds up to the same.  It is like two sides of the same leaf, which appear different.)

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I saw, in the light of what I had just discovered and learned, that in his astrological map there is no differentiation between the plane of the lunar orbit and that of the sun.  His birth (during the annual festival of the Sight of Shiva on 30 December at 1 am 1879) took place at a time when ALL THREE PLANES OF CONSCIOUSNESS – the Trinity or tripura of Earth, Sun, Moon – were dissolved into One:  what he called the Self.

This is the divinity which lies – like the staff – along the Midheaven axis of his birth and realization.

Only a few of the major aspects are shown here.  There is a remarkable beauty in the Venus/Mars opposition.  Venus and Mars-with-Pluto are in each other’s signs.  This is called a Mutual Receptivity, and as they are in the signs where they are weak (antipodeal to the signs which they rule), conventional astrologers shake their heads.  But who was Ramana?   Was the way he abandoned his family and married the Hill, auspicious? – particularly in the Indian culture, where each generation of a family risks the curse of an unproductive sadhu?   But look – the precision of the interplay suggests the intensity of Ramana’s darshan, his expressive eyes, and the Siva Ardhanarishvara – a vibrant marriage of male and female – in his silent presence.

No music could express it better.  See Arthur Osborne’s description of his facial features, on the previous page.  Libra – the sign inviting reconciliation, relationship-of-opposites and harmony – rises.  The Midheaven axis and lunar nodes with Sun and Moon, passes through Capricorn and Cancer, the polarity of the Family of Man:  old age and the child.  There is an archetypal theme of nativity.  The light is seeded in the darkest hour of night, at the lowest point of the year.  As the moment of alignment to the ecliptic plane passes its peak, this child of exceptional promise is born.

 Siva Ardhanisvara – Lord whose half is Woman:  copyright (c)The Sacred India Tarot by Rohit Arya & Jane Adams, Yogi Impressions Books, 2011

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The Moon when Ramana was born, was full, and about to wane.  When they were carrying Shiva into the temple in the darkest hour of night, the little boy was born nearby.  At that moment, with 21 degrees Libra rising (western tropical astrology), the root and flower of the Midheaven melted into those merged lunar and solar planes.  Whether or not the moon itself came into earth’s shadow at that time, the ecliptic planes were unified, quiet and still.  The realization flooded the boy at age sixteen, with an intense encounter and journey through the field of the dead – the death of the personal mind into a pure, unpersoned livingness of “I,  I” everywhere.  He lay down on the floor in deadly fear, and “died” in full consciousness, remaining awake and aware.

Young Ramana

 On another occasion, about sixteen years later in 1912, a devotee was with him.  They were returning to Virupaksha Cave on the hill Arunachala after a bath.  Near a place called Tortoise Rock, death again  dissolved all the planes:

“The landscape in front of me disappeared as a bright white curtain was drawn across my vision and shut it out.  I could distinctly see the gradual process.  There was a stage when  I could still see a part of the landscape clearly while the rest was covered by the advancing curtain.  It was like drawing a slide across one’s view in a stereoscope.  I stopped walking  lest I should fall.  When it cleared, I walked on.  When darkness and faintness came over me a second time, I leaned against a rock until it cleared.  The third time it happened, I felt it safer to sit, so I sat down near the rock.  Then  the bright white curtain completely shut off my vision, the head was swimming and the circulation and breathing stopped.  The skin turned a livid blue.  It was the regular death hue, and it got darker and darker.  Vasudeva Sastri took me to be dead and held me in his arms and began to weep aloud and lament my death.

 “I could distinctly feel his clasp and his shivering, and hear his words of lamentation, and understand their meaning.  I also saw the discoloration of my skin and felt the stoppage of circulation and breathing, and the increased chilliness of the extremities of this body.  My usual current of awareness still continued.  I was not in the least afraid, and felt no sadness at the condition of the body.  I had sat down near the rock in my usual posture and closed my eyes, and was not leaning against the rock.   The body, left without circulation or respiration, still maintained that position.  This state continued for some ten or fifteen minutes.  Then a shock passed suddenly through the body and circulation revived with tremendous force, and breathing also, and the body perspired from every pore.  The colour of life reappeared on the skin.  I then opened my eyes and got up and said ‘Let’s go.’  We reached Virupaksha Cave without any further trouble.  This was the only fit I had in which both circulation and respiration stopped.”

 “Ramana Maharshi and the Path of Self knowledge”, by Arthur Osborne

 After this happened, in his thirty-third year – (and malnourishment could have been a contributing factor, but the soul’s response was pre-emptive) – Ramana Maharshi began to enter the physical world fully, to speak, to cook, to build, to bind notebooks and to participate in the life and work of his devotees.  His sahaja Samadhi was by now in truth unchanging and unconditional.

AFTERWORD – Who is interested in eclipses?

When I was small, my mother woke me one night and carried me to a window to see an eclipse of the Moon.  “It is very beautiful,” I said. “Can I go back to bed now.”  In the morning, they talked of the eclipse.  I was very angry, why didn’t they wake me up and show me?   I had slept so deep, there was no trace of this event on my conscious mind.

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Here is a picture I painted at school, of my family on holiday:

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My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

Odds and Logs

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This drawing again is appropriate …

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Tidying papers and stuff yesterday, a constellation – postcards and pictures – formed a visual “story”.   By gravitation, a community of characters draw together for the tale … a winter’s tale.   What is it to be?

I plan to space out my posts a little .  I’d like to ease the pressure on readers’ emails, and to have more time to explore other blogs – they are treasure – but the new adventure, to receive as to give, flows in – from every direction, the river.  Responses meet my reservoir, and new picture stories happen.  Floating my paper boats into swift veins of the waters, one at a time, I follow others likewise, in the Worshipful Company of Bloggers!   As in R L Stevenson’s poem “Dark Brown is the River … Where go the Boats?” … they all come home, right here, today.   Wherever thou art, I am.

Give it all time.   Where is it going?   It knows.   “Tha’ knows …”

… my tiny fleck on this great river.

Fresh from re-exploring my Coastal Paths, I found these two old postcards, the lighthouse from my mother, the mudmaid from a friend …

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 “Boat and Lighthouse”, by Martin Wiscombe, painted on driftwood

and “The Mudmaid” by Sue and Pete Hill – on the woodland walk at Heligan

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 This man is called Bryan.  He loves to follow old trains.  He is a Friend of the Human Rights Aid Foundation.

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And this is the late Valerie Brooks, whose posthumous portrait I drew for the Human Rights Aid Foundation – a devoted supporter of lost children during her lifetime.  H.R.A. is a charity dedicated to assisting displaced persons, children and communities all over the world.   If the children are our forgotten thoughts, be tender to each one.  Let them come through, to breathe …  to melt and fly.

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Heart to heart talk – on a footpath in Arizona.   Sherlock Holmes used to reply, “I see what you see, but I notice what I see.”   There are as many cells in the brain as there are stars in all the galaxies, and more.   Until quite recently, maps of the brain included a very large vacancy – “Here be Dragons”, indeed.    The white-coats now believe that every atom of the intercranial space is consciousness and alive.   There is no vacuum.   That is progress.

As today’s story unfolds, an engineer arrived at this point to fix my printer, and we discussed Ramadan, Muslim burial ceremony, and the brain.  He said all souls at death, as at the gate of birth, meet Allah alike, and dressed in white.   A space is made in the coffin for the departed to sit up to receive the Judgment.  Then, my email PINGED! – and this arrived:

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Brain cell, Universe.

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River stone flow snake – this picture also, I show again.

I have three or four big posts in the pipeline, in particular the one about The Field of the Dead;  it concludes with Ramana Maharshi’s birthchart, who was born during full moon eclipse.  My backlog schedule is almost complete.  New themes arise as well, in response to feedback and situations.  The reservoir filled up my valley over many years.  Straight is the small gate for the waters to come through.

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On  my windowsill in the morning – the Sun in the Stone.  The wise winged philosopher was a birthday gift in about 2003. The flecked granite behind him, is from a beach on St Agnes, Scilly.  Those giant round pebbles there, like dinosaurs’ eggs, begin to glow when the sun is setting.

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Botticelli’s Aphrodite copy (1992).  She comes in from the Sea

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Dakshinamurti, the sage of silence.  His statue sits in a niche, near Ramanasramam, south of Arunachala.  Ramana Maharshi referred to the Self as “the smallest of atoms, the biggest of big things.  The hail stone falls in the ocean.  It falls as a small drop.  At once it melts and becomes the ocean itself.  The source of the Self is a pin point.  When it is searched for, it disappears and only fullness remains.  Hence, the Self is called the ‘atom’.  We are like the icebergs floating in the ocean of ananda … Mouna (silence) is of four kinds:  silence of speech, silence of the eye, silence of the ear, and silence of the mind.  Only the last is pure silence.  The commentary of silence is the best … only silence is the eternal speech, the One word, the heart to heart talk.  Silence is the flow of electric current.  Speech is like obstructing the current for lighting and other purposes.  However much a jnani (wise one) might talk, he is still the silent One.  However much he might work, he is still the quiet One.  His voice is incorporeal.  His walk is not on the earth.  It is like measuring the sky with the sky.”

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Pilgrims in the Ganga, on hampstead heath.   Ah!  how brave we are …

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… and Aphrodite with Ares

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I light a candle for Heather.  Heather, with our love,

and at first, our tears, go well.

Go well, and free.

Be well.

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My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space. 

Portrait Gallery (2) of Ramana & Devotees

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Ramana on a walk

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… and when he was very old

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… and when he was very young

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… and rather frail with the Light that trembled in his lamp

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… and along comes Robert

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… and Catherine Ingram, whose Dharma Dialogues watch the storm in the clear sky.

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This is another sketch of Annamalai Swami. (See my earlier post, Visit to Arunachala 1993)

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… and here, Annamalai and Ramana are at work, building the Ashram.

Annamalai’s book Living by the Words of Bhagavan as told to David Godman, caused quite a stir, in 1994.  It describes, with a bricklayer’s honesty, the atmosphere of ferment around the sage, in those early days.   It brilliantly observes the psychology of Ashram – any Ashram – and contains some very beautiful teaching.

Now, some other builders:

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Skanda and Ganapati – Ramana and Ganapati Muni play their mythological roles as spiritual brothers in Siva’s lap …

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… and then enjoy themselves in the tank.

 Ganapati’s devotees called him “Nayana” – Little Father.  Ganapati Muni could breathe a mantra into a devotee’s whiskery ear, in such a way that it remained, unending, like the sea.  His Sanskrit poetry of Ramana’s teaching and early dialogues with devotees, became the “Ramana Gita”.

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Kapali Shastri – the Muni’s student, a great Tantric scholar and scribe, who lived at Aurobindo’s Ashram, and journeyed to and fro – writes it all down

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And here are the lineage holders – K Natesan and Vamadeva Shastri (David Frawley).

The late K Natesan translated and preserved the Muni’s Sanskrit poetry, many of these works still unpublished.  The heritage combines Self-enquiry, Vedic wisdom, Ayurvedic medicine, Jyotish (the astrology of Light), Aurobindo’s teaching, meditation and yoga –  in every branch of life.   The disciplines are interwoven and integral.  It was the Muni’s burning desire to re-awaken India’s Vedic heritage, to cast off the abuses much of it had fallen into.

Vamadeva Shastri studied with Natesan and with M.P.Pandit (whose teacher was Kapali Shastri) and brought it back to New Mexico.  It thrives in his translations of the Vedic Hymns and on http://www.vedanet.com – the American Institute of Vedic Studies.  He published many books on Yoga and the roots of Mantra and the Vedic civilization.   A western acharya – a rarity, as recognized by the wisdom holders in India – he is one of those who help to restore the Sanatana Dharma.  Taking root, the oak in the acorn seed takes its time to grow.    It is interesting how the  pioneering initiative is and has been reflected back, by a Westerner.   Ramana lived in a cave, but became known through the quintessential comedy of east and west, within the well of Self-enquiry.

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Francis Lucille (2)

A French diplomat and musician:  his teacher was Jean Klein.  One day, the Gayatri Mantra opened the door …

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Papaji

Poonja (Papaji) traveled all over India as a yogi and stayed with Ramana.  He loved and played with Krishna also, round the other side of the Hill.  As he grew old, seekers from the west settled to him like bees to the flower.   In Lucknow, he took care of Osho’s children.   He said “Keep quiet” and “Let there be peace to all beings.”   With him, Catherine Ingram (above) released her Buddhist training into the meeting place of the Self.  The teaching is a flow of being, whatever the form.

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Ramana drinks wisdom

And here is Ramana on a hot day.

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My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.