Beginning to Meditate, From Darkness to Light, Part 8





Meditation is becoming more alive. Bring the mind into a disciplined state. Hold awareness within so that awareness itself can dissolve into its own essence. There are signposts along the way toward experiencing the deeper  goals of meditation in samâdhi; satchidânanda, Paraśiva. Hold the intensity of the inner śakti power of meditation within the spine; rest in the bliss of awareness aware only of itself.  A vision is actually looking into the world of the Gods and seeing something that is there; it is not at all created by your mind. Gurudeva’s approach to Śivachaitanya meditation, the deeper perspectives of meditation as in the Shûm language of meditation: the shûmîf  monistic and dîmfî dualistic perspectives. “Master Course Trilogy,” “Merging with Śiva” Lessons 83,84.




gururbrahmā gururviṣṇuḥ gururdevo maheśvaraḥ guruḥ sākṣāt parabrahma tasmai śrī gurave namaḥ


Good morning everyone.


Brought my glass case and there’s no glasses in it so this is a backup pair, I keep another.


We are continuing with “Merging with Siva”, “Beginning to Meditate.” Compilation of material from 1965 to 1970 and we’re up to Lesson 83.


“Becoming Simple


” When one begins to meditate, he should approach it dynamically, for it is becoming more alive. He is penetrating his awareness into the very source of life itself, for eventually he hopes to attain the ultimate goal, merger with Śiva, the experience of the Self beyond all time, beyond all form, beyond all cause. The experience of Paraśiva is attained only when one has become very simple, direct, uncomplicated. When a new nerve system has been built within this very body, strong enough to hold awareness within enough so that awareness itself can completely dissolve itself into its own essence, Satchidânanda and Paraśiva are experienced.


“After that dynamic experience, man’s heritage in this lifetime, one enters back into the mind—which is all form, creating, preserving, destroying, completely finished in all areas of manifestation—and moves freely through the mind, seeing it for what it is. 


“Paraśiva is the ultimate goal in merging with Śiva, the realization of the Self in its totality. How does one know that one has experienced such an experience if you cannot speak of it, if it is beyond the mind, thought, cause, time and space? And yet one does know and vibrantly knows. There are various signposts. One is that one could go into Paraśiva an ignorant person and come out wise. Another: the urgency, the goal, the quest, is over. He loses something: the desire for Self Realization. Another signpost is that the Self, the very core of existence, is always his point of reference. He relates to the exterior world only as an adult relates to the children’s toys. Paraśiva is to be sought for, worked for and finally attained. But a lot of work must be done first. 


“Choose a time for your meditation. Sit up so straight and strong and dynamic that you feel you are at that very moment the center of the universe. Regulate your breath so precisely that awareness flows freely out of the realm of thought into the perceptive areas of the mind. Then begin meditating on the two forces, odic and actinic. Be like the spaceman high above the surface of the Earth looking at the odic forces of the cities. Look then, too, at the odic forces, the magnetic forces, that motivate your life within yourself and between people and you and things. Feel the actinic force flooding out from the central source of energy itself. And then turn awareness in upon itself. Simply be aware of being aware. Sit in dynamic bliss. And in coming out of this meditation, next feel the power of the spine, vibrant energy flooding out through the nerve system, the hands, the arms, the legs, the head. Enter back into life joyfully, joyously.”


And my commentary:


Gurudeva has stated the ultimate goal of meditation as realization of the Self, Paraśiva. In many modern approaches to meditation, such a profound and ultimate goal is not mentioned. For example, a popular approach is Transcendental Meditation. Its official website says that Transcendental Meditation doesn’t focus on breathing or chanting, like other forms of meditation. Instead, it encourages a restful state of mind beyond thinking. A 2009 study found Transcendental Meditation helped alleviate stress in college students, while another found it helpful to reduce blood pressure, anxiety, depression and anger.


So you can see it left something out called the ‘ultimate goal.’ So these are all good, we’re not trying to criticize Transcendental Meditation nor these results but it’s, it’s missing, totally missing the deeper side of meditation. That’s the point. So in our approach we’re encompassing both simple benefits as mentioned here as well as ultimate goals of realizing Paraśiva and therefore eventually achieving mokṣa.


And my commentary continues:


Another term for the deeper goals of meditation is samâdhi, which of course is the eighth of the eight limbs of yoga.


Our Lexicon gives this definition which is really good:


Samâdhi: “Enstasy,” which means “standing within one’s Self.” “Sameness; contemplation; union, wholeness; completion, accomplishment.” Samâdhi is the true… Samâdhi is the state of true yoga, in which the meditator and the object of meditation are one. Samâdhi is of two levels. The first is savikalpa samâdhi (“enstasy with form” or “seed”), identification or oneness with the essence of an object. Its highest form is the realization of the primal substratum or pure consciousness, Satchidânanda.


And that again “…Its highest form is the realization of the primal substratum or pure consciousness, Satchidânanda.”


The second is nirvikalpa samâdhi (“enstasy without form” or “seed”), identification with the Self, in which all modes of consciousness are transcended and Absolute Reality, Paraśiva, beyond time, form and space, is experienced. This brings in its aftermath a complete transformation of consciousness. In Patanjali’s Classical Yoga, nirvikalpa samâdhi is known as asamprajñâta samâdhi, “supraconscious enstasy”—samâdhi, or beingness, without thought or cognition, prajñâ. Savikalpa samâdhi is also called samprajñâta samâdhi “conscious enstasy.”


And we’re back to the text:


Lesson 84


“Discipline And Success


“It is very important to decide exactly what you are going to meditate on before beginning. Then stay with the decision throughout the meditation and make every effort to avoid the tendency to become distracted and take off in a new direction. The Shûm language as a tool for guiding the meditator is very helpful, because the individual’s awareness is precisely held within the chosen area. This is similar to how we must discipline ourselves to be successful in outer activities. To become distracted is unacceptable. Successful people finish what they begin. It is possible to learn to meditate extremely well but be unsuccessful in practicing it if the meditator allows himself to become sidetracked once the inside of the mind has opened. To be successful, one has to be very, very firm with oneself when beginning a meditation. Each meditation must be performed in the way it was intended to be performed when the meditation was begun.


“To be successful in meditation, we have to bring the mind into a disciplined state. Undisciplined people can never be told what to do, because they will not listen. Their awareness is wafted around by every little fancy that comes along. Those who really want to make progress in meditation and continue to do so and better themselves year after year after year have to approach this art in an extremely positive and systematic way. 


“Thousands of devotees have come and gone since the beginning of my mission in 1949. (So that’s age 22. Gurudeva looks at, he started his mission.) Each one of them was determined to go deep within and realize the Self, but many gave up along the way. This was because at times the śakti power became very strong within them and their inner nerve system was not ready to receive the impact. Others were successful because they were more disciplined, and when their inner power came up, they enjoyed its intensity by holding it steady within the spine. They rested in the bliss of awareness aware only of itself. They then continued the meditation as planned after the power began to wane.”


And we have some different material in my commentary. This is a standard presentation I developed on different types of meditation. It’s primarily designed to help someone who’s not totally familiar with Gurudeva’s style of meditation, to understand how it differs from what others call meditation. First one really surprised me when I prepared this talk many years ago.


Passage Meditation. Eknath Easwaran is an exponent of this approach to meditation. The Blue Mountain Meditation Center website describes it as: “Silent repetition in the mind of memorized inspirational passages from the world’s great religions.”


Wonderful practice but let’s, what’s being called meditation. Never would have thought that.


Visualizing The Form of the Deity. The approach here is that, for example, we are meditating on Lord Śiva by mentally visualizing the murti of Naṭarāja. 


Vision of the Deity. This approach is to use the sixth chakra of divine sight to have an actual vision of the Deity.


And, of course, a vision and a visualization are totally different experiences. A visualization is just a creation of your mind whereas the vision is actually looking into the world of the Gods and seeing something that’s there. So it’s not at all created by your mind.


Repeating a Mantra. The approach is to mentally repeat a mantra over and over again. ( Of course we do that too but we consider it japa and not meditation.)


Repeating a Mantra Combined with prāṇāyāma. This approach adds to the previous mantra repetition doing a prāṇāyāma at the same time.


Experiencing An Aspect of the Superconsciousness Realms. This approach is to, for example, listen to the inner high pitched ‘ee’ sound or to see the inner clear white light.


So, we all know that’s the approach that Gurudeva uses, looking into the superconscious realms. And a good example of that is in the meditation he created Śivachaitanya.


So we look at inner Light (jyoti): Observe the light that illumines the thoughts. Concentrate only on that light, as you might practice being more aware of the light on a TV screen than of its changing pictures.


Sacred Sound (nāda): Listen to the constant high-pitched ‘ee’ sounding in the head. It is like the tone of an electrical transformer, a hundred taṃbūras distantly playing or a humming swarm of bees.


And then we have the two perspectives in the Shûm language that relate: shûmîf and dîmfî.


So shûmîf we’re familiar with quite well.


One of four perspectives, the meditative viewpoint of being awareness flowing from one area of the mind to another, the mind itself being stationary; the perspective of the Shûm-tyêîf language; it is also simply called the Shûm perspective; in Śaiva Siddhānta it includes the deeper meditative practices; it is advaita or a monistic viewpoint.


Then we get dîmfî:


One of four perspectives, the metaphysical viewpoint of looking into inner and outer space; it is a perspective that acknowledges, understands and communicates with God and Gods, beings on the astral plane, people from other planets; it is here that all psychic phenomena take place; in Śaiva Siddhanta it includes the consciousness of the devas, Mahadevas and God Śiva experienced in the temple; it is dvaita or a dualistic viewpoint.


And Gurudeva comments on these both.


“In shûmnam (meditation) the shûmîf perspective of the three worlds and seven dimensions of the mind does not involve us in the knowledge of the devas and Mahadevas who live in the inner worlds. You would be experiencing through the shûmîf perspective exactly what the devas would experience in the Second and Third world were they to meditate upon the Shûm concepts. Shûmîf is pure advaita. When we become conscious of devas, Mahadevas or our personal Deity, we have transferred our perspective into what is called the dîmfî, which is pure dvaitist.”


In other words, dîmfî is the perspective used in temple worship, of worshiping the Deity separate from us, where shûmîf is the perspective used in meditation where everything we find is just ourself. There’s no second person involved in shûmîf in that approach to meditation.


Thank you very much. Have a wonderful day.


[End of transcript.]

File Type: mp3
Categories: Bodhinatha Talks
Author: Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami
Scroll to Top