Unit V. Consciousness
1. The Players
2. Vibrations in the Mind
4. Stages of Development of Consciousness
5. Stages of Samadhi
7. Modes of Transformation
9. Rudra Granthi
Materials needed: Journal, drawing materials
The Language of the Gods
Patanjali’s Sutras (you may select which one)
Language of the Gods
Mind and Consciousness Relationship
Ethics of Siddhis
Are you conscious? Are you sure? There’s a rumor going around
that we are all asleep, steeped in ignorance and distracted from the true
Reality. But, you say, “I went to college.” Maybe you even went to
graduate school. “I’m not ignorant, not by any means.” And somewhere
in the back of your ego something swells with pride. But a Yogi would
say that you are referring to your mind, and the mind is not the same thing
as consciousness. In fact, the mind is only a mirror or a tool of consciousness.
I didn’t like that idea for a long, long time and still feel wary of it.
However, the way to find out for sure is to study your own mind and see for
yourself. I invite you to do that in this unit.
Let us begin with the Oxford Universal Dictionary definition of consciousness.
The word ‘conscious’ comes from the Latin conscius which means: 1) knowng
something with others, 2) knowing in one’s self; and 3) inwardly sensible
or aware. What is curious is that the word begins with con which means
“with.” So we have “knowing with.” Who or what is this “other[s]”
that plays a role in consciousness? That is a question, I’d like you
to keep in mind as we proceed.
The element in the sixth chakra is awareness. Generally, I think
everyone would agree that consciousness means being aware of something or
the ability to know something. There is just one problem with this
deduction. We say we are unconscious in our sleep, yet we dream.
And in our dreams we are aware of things, people, events, feelings, etc.
So to look at higher consciousness, we need a definition that separates it
from ordinary consciousness. Yogis say there are four kinds of consciousness:
waking, dreaming, deep sleep and turiya which is a higher order, undifferentiated,
cosmic, non-dual awareness. It is Turiya we will be examining.
This is a form of consciousness that results when all the veils and distractions
have been removed from our experience. The veils and distractions,
or maya, is what is called ignorance. Not that we are stupid, but that
we cannot see the true Reality, the way things really are, because our minds
are focused on external objects and events or on inner thoughts, planning,
[Note: As we go along, I am going to use the Sanskrit names of concepts
whenever they mean something different from the usual meanings of the associated
word in English. This will alert you to the fact that we are talking
about ideas that transcend everyday experience. So you may have to
try to relax your mind into the ether in order to understand them. I
will italicize the word when it is first introduced but not afterward.]
Exercise: Language of the Gods
Secure a copy of this book and browse through it to see what it contains.
Read the first two chapters to see how the references may be useful to you.
Then select one of the other chapters according to your personal interests
to study in depth. Make notes in your journal about how to find what
Yogis say that consciousness is the three in one: the knower, the known
and the knowing process are all one thing or part of one thing. At
the higher levels, they become indistinguishable from each other. Another
way of looking at consciousness is as a field. This field can contain
objects or not. In any case, consciousness is a way of knowing, a process
of knowing. At higher levels, this kind of knowledge is called prajna
(Pra means ‘high’, Jna means ‘to know’). With prajna, the mind is
cut off completely from the physical world and consciousness is centered
in one of the vehicles between manas and atma. It is the prajna in
samprajnata samadhi that we will be investigating.
The Being that knows we will call Purusa . Purusa, also called Atman,
is the innermost Self. We are most familiar with this entity as the
Witness Self or the Higher Self. This is the Real You, your own Higher
Self’s identity or individuality which is eternal. It is both part
of the Ultimate Reality and individual at the same time. We could say
it is nested within the Ultimate Reality and is one of the many separate consciousnesses
created so that the Divine One can experience life on earth. So, when I talk
about Purusa, that is your Real Self. And it is also mine and everyone
else’s. This is the entity who “owns” the Supreme Consciousness.
Because Buddhism does not admit such an existence but refers to consciousness
as if it were an entity in itself, we will assume that sunyata or emptiness
or the void is synonymous with pure consciousness itself. I am going
to use the word Purusa in what follows to allow you a bit of
distance from the discussion and to remind you that we are talking about
the Higher Self of everyone.
You will remember that the Ultimate Reality manifested two things: Consciousness
(Purusa: Spirit or Divine Person) and Matter (Prakrti: Nature).
These are symbolized in one of the Hindu myths by Shiva and Shakti.
Consciousness was reflected from matter to form the Universal Mind (Mahat)
which then developed into the Antahkarana (or Citta) which is individual
mindstuff out of which came Buddhi, Ahamkara and Manas forms of mind.
These were followed by the senses and organs of action. Please refer
to Figure 3.
To round out the definitions, Jivatman is the life spirit in us
(jiva – life; atman –self). Tyberg (1970) says the Jivatman
is the Spirit or individual self in living creatures, a portion of the Divine
supporting individual existence in Nature, one of the Divine many.
It does not evolve but represents the ‘multiple divine’ in manifestation.
In this perspective, the Higher Self and the soul are not identical, but
rather we find that consciousness is reflected from the Buddhic mind to form
the soul. The Antaratman (antar means ‘within’, atman
means ‘self’) is The Soul, or Inner Self or God-spark. It is a conscious
form or projection of the Jivatman, and it is that which is evolving during
incarnation. It gathers the essence of all experience and soul perceptions;
and, in time, brings about god-realization. Vivekananda (1976) says that
the soul is the everliving essence of intelligence.
Exercise: Spiritual Identity
Please write a paper on your spiritual identity, i.e., who are you?
Use the concepts above to describe yourself on each experiential level.
For instance, how do you manifest a part of yourself as the Jivatman?
How do you feel to yourself as Purusa? Work on a feeling level as you
try to identify yourself with all of these concepts.
Now, to make the connection with our gods of the sixth chakra. Purusa
as Shiva and Prakrti as Shakti have been separated during all of creation
because of the necessity of polarity in order to make things work.
In evolution, they are striving to become reunited. And, in the sixth
chakra, this occurs. Yet they still maintain their identity as separate
individualities. Purusa is still enthralled by earth life and
distracted thereby from experiencing pure consciousness. (Notice how
Shakti, owner of all the vibrations, is doing all the work.)
Vibrations in the Mind
Now you may be wondering what role the mind plays in all of this.
Isn’t it the mind that is conscious? Well, no. It is rather
the other way around. Conscious-ness operates through the mind.
According to the Yogis, the mind cannot function unless it is activated by
consciousness. It is a supremely complex instrument but, like the lawn
mower, it won’t work unless someone pulls the cord or turns the switch.
Consciousness expresses itself through different grades of the mind and the
quality of its expression depends upon the level of mind through which it
is operating. So we could say that the Higher Self, Purusa, uses the
mind as a tool for self-expression and for operating in the world.
You will recall that the senses are tools of the mind that enable us to make
connection with things and people in the world. So it is Purusa’s consciousness
that is the activating factor that turns on the mind.
The spiritual work we do is called evolution, and it is a reversible process.
In this case, evolution means a Return to Spirit. In one of the Hindu
myths, Vishnu is breathing; and, on the out breath, the universe is created;
on the in breath, it is all withdrawn. This indicates that there is
a pulse in creation, a vibration, and we know this is so from research in
physics. Let us see how this works on levels of consciousness.
Exercise: Patanjali’s Sutras
Secure one of the many books on Patanjali’s Sutras and begin reading in
it. The one by Taimni called The Science of Yoga is probably
most useful as it contains commentary. As you go along, try to integrate
what you are reading with what is being presented in this unit. Amazon.com has a good selection that I know of.
Just enter “Patanjali’s Sutras” in the search box. Or consult the Reference
section for some ideas.
Involution is the process of the Divine Self coming down into matter and
taking form. It is said that, in this process, the Self forgets who
it is and gets entangled in worldly events, desires and perceptions.
These are the veils of maya, and they prevent a return to the blissful state
of Ultimate Reality. So, in order to return, the One who has incarnated
must undergo a painful and lengthy process of removing all the obscurations
to disentangle ItSelf. This is called spiritual practice.
The involution process is pretty interesting. We have seen the Samkhya
rendition of it (Figure 3). Let us look at another and compare the
two. In this model from Patanjali, the Ultimate Reality as Brahman (the
creator in the Hindu trinity) divides ItSelf into two components: Brahma-Caitanya
which is an underlying, integrated Consciousness (like Purusa), and
Sabda-Brahman (like Prakrti) which is Vibration. As in
the other tradition, this vibration is matter. All matter vibrates because
it is composed of particles and waves, electrons and neutrons, molecules.
All of these are held together by pulses or vibrations of energy usually
either positive or negative which causes their interactivity. So Consciousness
and Vibration are the two primary results of the initial division. They are
complementary, interdependent, and appear or disappear simultaneously.
This means that the vibration of matter is always associated with consciousness.
Each kind of vibration is paired with a corresponding state of consciousness.
For example, you prick your finger with a pin and feel pain. The prick
causes vibrations in your nervous system and brain, and you become aware
of pain. Usually the vibrations of consciousness, in such an event,
would activate the mind to compare the sensation with memories of other such
sensations in order to discover what the pain means.
Particular states of consciousness can be produced by starting the connecting
kinds of vibrations, and the reverse is also true. This is why mantra
practice, called Japa Yoga, is used extensively by practicing yogis.
Chanting a mantra produces sound vibrations that resonate in the body as
well as in the surrounding environment. So chanting can tune the body
and mind to higher frequencies of vibration. However, only certain mantras
that have been used over thousands of years can produce higher states of
consciousness and only when they are practiced correctly for a long
enough period of time.
On the other hand, consciousness can generate particular vibrations in
order to influence and change matter. Psychosomatic illness is an example
of this on a physico-mental level. At higher levels, we find such
things as the ability to become invisible or to levitate. Yes, these
things can happen deliberately, but they are associated with very high levels
of consciousness, and are called siddhis. All of the Sanskrit alphabet
of 52 letters represent elements of mantra because each letter carries a
basic, eternal power. We have seen these on the petals of the chakras
we have been studying.
How do the vibrations translate into the names and forms of the universe
that we are familiar with? That is the function of the gunas.
The word guna means, roughly, a quality or characteristic.
Mother Nature (Prakrti) is basically composed of three basic gunas or attributes
which, until they are disturbed by consciousness, are in equilibrium.
When set into motion, the gunas can combine in an infinite number of ways
to produce everything we know of. These three gunas are as follows:
Sattva (from Sat - ‘being’) is the quality of mental purity
and light and balance. It expresses itself as harmony, wisdom and light.
Light in its highest form is the luminous Truth-Consciousness that brings
happiness, bliss and rapture. Its form of vibration is harmonious,
a rhythmic,wavelike motion that comes from a balanced combination of the
other two gunas.
Rajas is the force of energy and motion in Nature, vibrations that
are disharmonious and not rhythmic in their actions. Rajas is the quality
of ego-striving and passion. In its higher forms, it becomes the Self-conscious,
creative Will of the divine. We think of rajas in terms of fiery energy,
struggle, effort and desire. It causes actions, functions and operations
usually performed on tamasic matter.
Tamas is the force of inertia and stability in Nature. It
is associated with darkness, ignorance, unconsciousness and inaction, the
opposite of rajas. In terms of vibration, it holds a position.
At higher levels, tamas becomes peace, calm and repose. Then it holds
everything in omnipotent silence. Tamas is passive and inactive.
Rajas acting upon tamas may produce a wavelike motion that is a harmonious
combination of motility and inertia, and we call that sattva. You can see
in this a reflection of the Purusa /Prakrti duality with the Ultimate Reality
being the sattvic equilibrium. So, as above, below has the same form.
When rajas and tamas are completely harmonized into sattva, we have non-duality
because rajas and tamas are opposites.
The gunas come into play when Purusa’s Consciousness is directed onto
(matter in the form of) the balanced gunas thus disturbing them and setting
them into motion. At this point, creation of the universe begins.
The gunas can combine in an infinite number of ways and proportions thus accounting
for the diversity we see all around us. Therefore, we see that the
equilibrium of the gunas is dynamic because it contains the potential for
any combination of qualitities when activated, but reverts to equilibrium
when it is not needed. For instance, on the everyday level, when you
focus your attention on something, it appears in your perception with all
its characteristics, but when you are not paying attention, it disappears
for all practical purposes. One of the objectives of Yoga is to reach
this position of choice at the highest level possible. Gunatita means
above the gunas, and is the position of choice that Purusa has.
The Four Stages of the Gunas
The stages of the gunas are: undifferentiated (Alinga), differentiated
(Linga), universal (Avisesa), and particular (Visesa)
as we move from the highest to lowest forms. And these levels correspond
to the stages of creation.
We will be using the word, ‘object’ in this context to refer to that which
is the object of conscious attention, not just a thing like a plate or glass.
Therefore, it is anything upon which attention can be focused. So it
can be an artifact, an idea, an image, a thought, layers of mind, archetypes,
deities or even consciousness itself. You can see that objects vary
in the distinctness with which they can be observed. This is accounted
for by the levels or stages of the gunas and where in the hierarchy of involution
the objects of attention occur. The following are listed in the order
from highest to lowest levels.
1. Undifferentiated gunas are simply the potential for development
in matter. You could say that they are just waves of awareness in consciousness.
They do not yet have any differentiating characteristics. It is rather
like an idea in the mind but is not to be confused with that.
2. Differentiated gunas are just marks or signs that separate
objects from each other. These can be objects or principles.
Whereas undifferentiated gunas can be thought of as the gunas in equilibrium,
differentiated gunas would be the case when they have separate identities
and begin to take on identifying qualities, e.g., as sattva, rajas and tamas,
or as cognition, activity and stability.
3. Universal gunas are like archetypes. They are universal
patterns or principles that lay the foundation for actual manifestation in
the world. These are abstract qualities that do not yet have concrete
names and forms.
4. Particular gunas are actual objects in the world that
have names and forms. They can also be concepts in the lower mind.
Particular gunas have a separate existence independent of other objects.
Select a simple object on which you might want to concentrate. Then
draw a tree diagram showing all four levels of this object in terms of the
gunas. For instance, what would your favorite cat or dog be like on
each of these levels? How would it be perceived by you? Begin
by making notes about its salient characteristics. Include all of the
sensory data that is important to you. These are the gunas of which
it is composed. When you have your list, make three columns on the
same page headed by the names of the three gunas and put a checkmark in each
column that is part of the characteristic. If you like, you could also
estimate a percentage of that characteristic that is involved.
In making the tree, try working from the top down as if you were creating
the animal. Then work from the bottom up as if you were going to make
it disappear. Which is easier? Why?
Cit is the Sanskrit word for Supreme Consciousness. The aspect
of form through which it manifests is called Citta, sometimes
called ‘mindstuff.’ This is mind in general and encompasses all levels
of mind from Mahat to Manas including memory, etc. It is a product of both
consciousness and matter. To connect this idea with our kundalini story,
it would be the union of Shiva and Shakti, or of Purusa and Prakrti.
Both are necessary for its functioning. Consciousness without matter
is isolated and has no tools. Matter without consciousness is inert.
Citta is like an intangible screen which enables consciousness to be projected
into the manifested world. Another hologram. Citta only comes
into being when consciousness interacts with matter. The next step
down into matter involves activation of the gunas which we will take
up later in this unit.
The vibrations in Citta are many and varied. They are called vrttis
or thought waves. These are fundamental states in which the mind can
exist, and they are the result of consciousness being reflected from the
mindstuff. Patanjali mentions five Citta-vrttis: right knowledge, wrong
knowledge, imagination, sleep and memory. Right and wrong knowledge
vrttis are images formed by contact with the sense organs, i.e., have their
origin in the external world. Imagination and memory are produced without
contact with the outside world and so are subjective experiences. Sleep
has no volition and is influenced by subconscious desires.
By controlling the mind through spiritual practice, meditation and/or
mantra, we can control the vrttis and eventually put them aside at will.
This involves a process of discrimination (viveka) and is the whole
point of the eight rungs of Yoga. In addition to the practice, we
need to develop Vairagya which means non-attachment, renunciation
or mastery of desire. Viveka and Vairagya are the two primary ways
to achieve liberation.
Make a diagram that shows the involution of your self.
Evolution is the reverse process of involution, what I call Return
to Spirit. It means the deliberate return to an experience of the Oneness
of Supreme Consciousness. And it requires undoing all the processes
that brought matter to its culmination in the human mind during involution.
Purusa has to disentangle ItSelf from the vrttis, the gunas, and from
the universe itself. Note that this means on the level of consciousness,
not necessarily on the physical level, because as long as we are embodied
we have to function in the world using the instruments we have been given
for that purpose. However, those who have achieved liberation are
able to live in a simultaneous reality which includes both.
To reach this state requires intense concentration and meditation.
We met the eight rungs of Yoga back in the first guidebook, and you may want
to review them during what follows. You will recall that the first
five rungs prepare the personality (yamas and niyamas), body (asanas), breath
(pranayama), and senses (pratyahara) to sustain a higher level of consciousness.
The last three (dharana, dhyana and samadhi) prepare the mind by helping
it to focus and gradually eliminate the distractions that obscure Turiya
or Supreme Consciousness.
Stages of Development of Consciousness
Probably the most widely accepted source of information about the development
of higher consciousness is Patanjali who wrote Patanjali’s Sutras.
These are available in many different editions some of which also have commentary
that helps elucidate them. They are very succinct, so require interpretation
for those of us who are not born to Sanskrit. What follows is my version
and is taken from several sources in an effort to validate the conclusions.
We begin with the last three steps of the rungs of Yoga.
Samyama is a combination of concentration (dharana), meditation
(dhyana), and contemplation (samadhi), the last three rungs
of Yoga, when it is applied to an object of concentration. It is achieved
when a practitioner can quickly run through all three stages and maintain
the focus of attention reliably over a period of time. It is a continuous
process and does not involve any marked change in consciousness. It
is more of a deepening toward the center of one’s own consciousness.
It is in samadhi that prajna first appears. Samyama is used as a tool
to investigate the four levels of Samprajnata Samadhi as they are
manifested in the different levels of beingness that follow the initial
achievement of samadhi.
Dharana, the sixth rung of Yoga, is often called concentration
because it requires the person to focus attention on an object and to limit
the range of attention. The card game called “concentration” is a
good example of this. One focuses attention only on the game trying
to remember where all the unplayed cards are located as they are turned up,
two at a time, in an attempt to match two of them. We could say that
we are “knowing with the cards.” Almost any object can be used for dharana
such as a candle, a flower, the breath, a design on the rug, etc. The
mind, being used to entertainment or varying stimulation, soon becomes bored
and begins to wander. So the task is to keep bringing it back to the
object of attention until you can keep it there for a period of time.
This develops the ability of the mind to focus and hold attention.
Dhyana is sometimes called meditation. This is really an
extension of dharana in that there is continuity of attention on the object,
but distractions have now been eliminated and the person can concentrate
at will. There may still be some movement within the focus of attention,
however. Let us say that you are concentrating on a candle flame.
It may waver, you may begin to see things in it, it may go in and out of
visual focus, etc. But the room and all other objects around the candle
have disappeared because the concentration of attention is so intense.
There is nothing in the field of awareness but the candle flame. And
this focus can be maintained for a long period of time. This is the
beginning of real mind training. Direct knowledge of the object is not yet
attained in Dhyana because the mind is preventing realization of the essence
of the object by interposing consciousness itself between the reality hidden
behind the object and the self-consciousness of the meditator. When
this self-consciousness disappears, completely, samadhi is achieved.
In Samadhi, not only distractions have gone, but the self-awareness
(svarupa) of the mind is silenced. The body is not responding
either. Only the object remains in the field of consciousness.
There is a dissolution of the subject-object relationship. You and
the object fuse in consciousness. This is sometimes called contemplation
and it leads to singlepointedness of mind. The purpose of samadhi
is to attain perfect knowledge of the object by becoming one with it.
Unless you are a practiced meditator, you have probably only experienced
this in rare moments of natural beauty or existential crisis. The ego-mind
resists such an experience because it ceases to exist in such moments.
What distinguidhes samadhi from such unexpected, serendipitous moments is
that samadhi can be sustained over long periods of time, and it can be instigated,
prolonged and ended at will. When it ends, other forms that were screened
out and self-consciousness return. When self-awareness is reduced to
the vanishing point, the subject-object relationship dissolves and they fuse
in consciousness. Then we can perceive the reality hidden behind the
object: perceiver, perceived and perception become one. Another three-in-one.
Can you see how this process is a reversal of the creation process?
In Involution or creation, we go from an idea in the mind of the creator
through progressive stages of differentiation until we reach a concrete form
in the world or concept in the individual mind. In evolution, we reverse
the differentiation process and dissolve all the separations it created until
we have nothing left but consciousness and vibrations.
At this point, we are ready for the real work to begin. The purpose
of the following stages of samadhi is to remove the object of concentration
as well as all remaining mentation in order to uncover the Supreme consciousness.
Goal of Samadhi
The goal of samadhi is to experience and be able to maintain a state of
Supreme Consciousness. In all mystical traditions, the process to
achieve that is the same. What makes it difficult to understand is
the variation in nomenclature. When we try to understand something
that is being explained in a tradition that is unfamiliar to us, the words
are different and the explanations vary in terminology as well as in perspective.
So it seems, at first, as if there is a different process in each one.
I think it is a bit clearer in the eastern traditions that have spent more
effort exploring the higher levels of consciousness. Also, since meditation
is the royal road to liberation, we need to be practiced in that in order
to experience for ourselves what the goal is like.
There is no way to get there through the mind or with the ego because
they are the very same faculties that obscure the goal. Samadhi is
the process of putting the mind, ego and personality on hold so we can experience
This brings us to a consideration of how non-duality can be achieved by
a living human being still bonded to the earth. So now we look at
the stages of samadhi.
Stages of Samadhi
There are two major stages of samadhi that result in liberation from the
vehicles (mind, ego and personality) that produce suffering (klesas)
and karmas. One is Sabija samadhi which still has an objective
seed (bija), or object that is separated out from what is a truly,
undifferentiated Reality. Sabija Samadhi is concerned with knowledge and
powers within Prakrti, an external process. And the other stage of samadhi
is Nirbija samadhi which means consciousness is no longer differentiated
or focused on objects, so we would have an unobstructed view of the
true Reality. This means the mind is merged in the One Reality.
Its aim is to transcend Prakrti into complete liberation (Kaivalya)
which is an internal process. Nirbija samadhi is also known as Nirvikalpa
Samadhi. You are familiar with the word bija from studying the
chakras as each one has a bija or seed sound that tunes it.
This is the working level of samadhi during which all seeds of worldly
existence are removed including the mind itself. In case you are wondering,
as I did, the mind is not thereby destroyed but is merely sidetracked during
the actual meditation. As soon as the concentration is released, it
returns to its usual functions. However, I think you will find that
it is increasingly finer-tuned and its focus maintained on the Ultimate Reality
more and more as the practices continue. Eventually all the samskaras,
klesas and karmas are destroyed and they never return after that. These
constitute the obstacles and distractions that prevent experience of the
One and of pure Consciousness. So, for a while, we go back and forth
between samadhi and the world of names and forms. Ultimately, we become
able to inhabit both simultaneously with our Purusa identity intact.
This goal is not reached in the sixth chakra, however.
Sabija samadhi has four substages which are tied to the levels of guna
operations as well as four of the bodies, kosas, or faculties of beingness
(see figure below).
|Stage of Samadhi
|Joyful peace or
|Elemental ego sense
Table 6-4. Stages of Sabija Samadhi
The word prajna is used to refer to higher consciousness
in the form of direct knowledge from experience. So the four substages
are identified as Samprajnata Samadhi. In between each
one of them is a period of mental cloudiness or voidness in which there is
no object. This is called Asamprajnata Samadhi.
[The letter ‘A’ in front of a word means “not” in Sanskrit.]
During this period, the individual is making a movement up to the next stage
of development. This entails a return to Center through Bindu.
If you can imagine a pole or axis around which the levels of samadhi are attached
hierarchially, the movement would be in to the center pole during asamprajnata
samadhi and then out onto the next higher- level plane during the following
samprajnata samadhi. In the sixth chakra, we have seen that the bindu
there is the gate to liberation. So, the makara point, the bindu of
the sixth chakra, would correspond to the center at which the next
step higher is into nirbija samadhi. You may find it interesting to
try to identify at which stage of development you are currently working.
Now let us look at the separate stages of samadhi. Refer to Table
Manas Level. At the manas level, we have two kinds of samadhi.
The first includes not only an object, but also awareness of its name, quality
and other knowledge about it. The second type is free of the details.
Savitarka samadhi is samyama (concentration,
meditation and contemplation) on the differentiating faculty of the lower
mind. It is concerned with identification and examination of
gross objects, categories and hierarchies. Duality of subject and object
is maintained and mixed up with the word (external vibration), the meaning
(internal vibration) and knowledge (response wave in the mind). This
corresponds to the Visesa stage of the gunas. Visesa means ‘particular.’
So this particular guna is concerned with objects as separate things with
names, forms, and separate independent existences They are isolated
and apart from the archetypes and divine consciousness in which they are
Nirvitarka samadhi occurs when the object is
perceived alone without the attachments and identifications of name,
form, knowledge, etc. as above. There is no response to the object
but just the knowledge of the thing in itself. This is a direct perception
unmediated by any mental ruminations.
Asamprajnata samadhi follows. This is a cloud or cover on
pure consciousness that is experienced in the transit between the objects
(pratyayas) of two successive planes. In samprajnata samadhi, consciousness
can only know the nature of something placed within its field of illumination.
When there is no object, the field is dark rather like the darkness of outer
space where there is nothing to reflect the light. So, when the object
of contemplation fades due to insight into its insubstantiality, one experiences
a kind of void or emptiness. Although the mind is blank and cut off
from the outside world, it is perfectly concentrated and under complete control
of the will. The space appears to be void and dark until consciousness
emerges into the next plane. The meditator has passed through
the Bindu into the next plane of samprajnata samadhi. The recession
of consciousness into its center consists of alternate in and outer movements
of consciousness at each barrier between two planes. Refer to the
mandala process in Unit IV. for an analogy. When the meditator is
well-practiced, movements can be swift and a matter of just focusing consciousness
into the desired vehicle (in this case, level of mind).
Vijnana Level. This level has to do with the tanmatras or
discrimination of more subtle objects than the previous level. All
the tattvas except Purusa can be examined here.
Savichara samadhi is reflective concentration
or samyama on subtle objects again mixed with names, forms and knowledge.
However the seeds of past actions are not yet destroyed. Here we might
be looking at the essential functions of mind such as how we form abstract
concepts and grasp their inner significance. We can also begin to make some
discriminations between the real and unreal. This plane is associated
with the Avisesa stage of the gunas which has to do with universal
or non-specific objects. It corresponds to higher mind (Buddhi) and
deals with the universals, archetypes and universal principles that underlie
names and forms. Here we are talking about abstract ideas or abstract
thinking as the objects of concentration.
Nirvichara samadhi is super-reflection on subtle
objects unmixed with names, forms, etc. The mind becomes pure and filled
with truth. Now there is one single object of concentration but there
is still a seed of attachment.
Asamprajnata samadhi occurs again
Ananda Level. This level is filled with joyful peace and
bliss. The focus is on inner perception or mind. At the Ananda
level, the mental activity is primarily intuition, and the instrument is
called the buddhic vehicle.
Sananda samadhi is concentration or samyama
on direct knowledge of the object and/or the interior organ of
thought itself bereft of qualities. All samskaras or distractions and
obscurations are repressed except one (the seed). This one seed replaces
all the others. All objects and universal principles become part of
a universal consciousness like parts embedded in an invisible whole but
still identifiable. This is an example of unity in diversity.
The associated guna stage is Linga which means ‘a mark’ which serves
to identify. This is a state of consciousness in which objects and
principles are mere marks or signs which serve to discriminate them from
other objects or ideas. Awareness of an object co-exists with awareness
of consciousness. One can see the common substratum.
Asamprajnata samadhi follows.
Atmic Level. At this level, called Sasmita samadhi,
one is aware of the individual, elemental ego sense of “I.” There
is a feeling of ‘I exist’ or of mind itself with no qualities except sattva
in its essence. The final seed is restrained so the space is seedless,
and a magnetic attraction begins to draw the seeker toward God. This
is Grace. The consciousness of pure existence swallows up consciousness
of objects. The stage of gunas that is connected is that of Alinga
meaning without a mark or differentiating characteristic. Objects and
principles lose their separate identity. Although they exist side by
side with consciousness, consciousness predominates, so the objects go out
of focus. Only awareness of divine consciousness remains. Separate
objects may remain like shadows, but they have no important meaning
Lest you begin to fear that much will be lost in this process, let me
reassure you that nothing is lost. Rather a great deal is gained in
the increasing richness, beauty and expansion of perception. The higher
always subsumes, assimilates and integrates the lower levels of development.
And from the higher levels of consciousness, Purusa can look down
and view all of the ones below.
We have said that the goal is to perceive Ultimate Reality without any
of the veils or coverings that obscure It. So we begin with the individual
consciousness (Purusa ) and work to clear it in order to free it from the
bondage of attachments to worldly and only-relative reality.
The next stage of Asamprajnata samadhi is called Nirbija Samadhi.
This is pure, undifferentiated consciousness, a view of Reality unobstructed
by any seeds. It is the Consciousness of Purusa ItSelf clear
of any Citta or mindstuff. The Light of Consciousness illuminates itself.
However, the experience may be one of darkness and silence. This is
due to the subtleness of the vibrations at this level. When the vibrations
of light become too fine, they may appear as darkness. And when the
vibrations of sound become too fine, they may be perceived as silence.
Any further withdrawal must be into Cosmic Consciousness. So the seeker
is poised on the brink of the void and must take a leap of faith into the
next higher level of consciousness.
Nirbija samadhi is the last stage of Asamprajnata samadhi. This
level of samadhi differs from the previous ones in that no fresh samskaras
can be produced beause there is no seed. And the older ones are gradually
being dissolved by renunciation and partial contact with Purusa. So
this is the point at which one can pass out of the realm of Prakrti and attain
Enlightenment or Kaivalya.
Dharma Megha Samadhi
The result of the leap of faith into the unknown void is called “a cloud
of virtue.” There is nothing in the field of consciousness.
The individual is free, liberated from rebirth, karma and klesas. Even the
potential for them is destroyed. This is the final samadhi, full and
irreversible. Time, space, cause, effect and separate person
no longer exist. There is perfect discrimination, infinite knowledge and the
gunas are in a state of equilibrium, called gunatita, from which they may
be called forth by Purusa when needed. The
various vehicles of consciousness are in a state of quietude from which they
can also be called forth as needed. Purusa can either use the
various vehicles and gunas as It sees fit or can withdraw into Its own Form
at will. Only the present NOW exists. Kaivalya is attained and
Self-Realization is irreversible.
Kaivalya is complete liberation, you will recall. It is a state
of Self-realization in which Purusa gets established finally with the evolutionary
process completed. This is Cosmic Consciousness that functions without
limitations. It is absolute independence, oneness, unity and identification
with the Supreme Being.
In Kaivalya, one does not obtain Truth but becomes Truth. There is a paradoxical
simultaneity of Individuality and Oneness in Identity. Kaivalya
and Nirvana co-exist and are two sides of the same reality. Nirvana
means cessation of the forces that create separate individuality and its
consequences. Kaivalya means to become one without a second; i.e., unity.
From time to time there has been a reference to the inner teacher or inner
guru. You may have experienced it as the “still small voice within.”
Sometimes it is called inner guidance. Yogis may call it Isvara.
I call it Spirit. It is one of the mnifestations of Purusa at
the highest level. The inner guru has two aspects: 1) Saguna Purusa
who teaches and liberates the individual and 2) Nirguna Purusa who makes
the individual self-identical with itself.
Saguna Purusa is the boundary between the relative and Absolute
worlds. It is Supreme Consciousness, the union of Purusa and Prakrti,
or of Shiva and Shakti, often called Sat-Cit-Ananda which means Eternal Existence,
Consciousness and Bliss. This is a dynamic equilibrium because Purusa
is still connected to the gunas, Prakrti and its cosmic forces.
Nirguna Purusa is beyond these qualities: a trans-empirical, unconditional,
indeterminate and subject-objectless consciousness which is a static state.
Make a diagram that shows your evolution in terms of these concepts and
indicate where you are in your journey.
Modes of Transformation
There are three methods of transformations that occur during this journey.
An account of them follows.
The main method employed in samadhi is called Viveka-Khyati. Viveka
means to discriminate the real from the unreal. Khyati means knowledge,
consciousness or awareness. What happens is that, by concentrating
on all the forms, ideas, intuitions, archetypes and instruments of the mind;
we gradually disentangle ourselves from the vehicles that are keeping us
a prisoner within ourselves. The vehicles are all the layers of mind,
ego and personality that surround our core of Divine Consciousness and obscure
our inner vision of Reality. So, one by one, we have to tease out and
discard all the obstacles to direct knowledge and perception. This
is the discrimination aspect. And, in the process, pure awareness transcends
even prajna or direct knowledge as well as direct perception.
Seven Stages of Awareness
Sutra number II-27 says, “The experiencer gains this knowledge in seven
stages, advancing toward the highest” (Prabhavananda & Isherwood, 1953,
p. 94). These stages follow:
1. Realization that all the knowledge we need is within us.
At this point we begin to practice discrimination, and the dissatisfaction
of the mind ceases as there is now a point of focus for practice.
2. Pain ceases. When we turn inward, the attachments and aversions
begin to diminish and lose their power. A gradual ascent to bliss begins.
3. Attainment of full knowledge through samadhi. This means
realization of our union with Purusa/Atman and recovery of our own divinity.
Sense of individual separateness and differentiation is gone. There
is only one of us.
4. Return to the world free of identification with it or any of
its forms because the world is seen as a mere projection and reflection
of the Atman. Our perspective is now vast and encompassing compared to the
previous view of reality. We can no longer be commanded by others or by
worldly duty or obligation. This is because we are no longer motivated
by desire or attachments.
5. The mind and the world have ended their service to the individual.
Mind has been the instrument and world the object of experience. We
are now disentangled from Citta. All difficulties, struggles and vacillations
of the mind have vanished.
6. Mental impressions, obscurations, distractions and even the gunas
themselves have fallen away. Citta itself melts away into its causes
whenever we so desire. This means full control over the mind and all
7. Eternal existence in union with Purusa/Atman. We are alone,
omnipotent, omnipresent and ever blessed and perfect in our own existence,
and we know that we always were.
You can see how the stages of samadhi implement these stages of development.
It might be interesting to compare these stages with the ox-herding pictures
and/or other such patterns of spiritual development.
There are three fundamental kinds of mental transformations that result
in suppression of the vrttis or thought waves. These are not states
but modes of transformation. Therefore, they are dynamic. The
mind passes through each of these stages in sequence at each level of Sabija
Samadhi. It must repeat on each plane as consciousness withdraws toward
the Center of Reality. These modes are: Nirodha parinama, Samadhi
parinama, and Ekagrata parinama. Each one develops a specific
kind of control of Citta.
Nirodha parinama is a form of concentration or dharana that results
in the restraint and suppression of thought waves. All properties are
reduced to latent potential. It produces a condition in which there
are no objects, ideas of distinction, cause or mental effort, nor imagination;
in other words, a condition of formlessness. It begins in dharana
with a gap between the chosen object of concentration and a distraction.
It is a momentary state in which neither a distraction nor an object of concentration
is present, i.e., it is the moment of time between impressions on consciousness.
All forms are reduced to the state of Dharmi, the basic medium in which
all properties have become latent. The objective is to produce this
momentary state and then to extend it for a considerable length of time.
It produces a complete control of thought waves in the mind which is called
the Niruddha state. We need to maintain the state of Niruddha
long enough for consciousness to pass through the cloud or void and emerge
into the next plane.
Samadhi parinama is the gradual settling of distractions and the
simultaneous arising of single-pointedness of mind. It eliminates
the tendency of distractions to appear in the field of consciousness.
To do this, it takes up one focus and excludes all others concentrating
on a particular set of properties instead of allowing them to change continuously
as they tend to do naturally. This process results in singlepointedness
of mind. Consciousness then begins to move in depth and the object
loses its name and form. The meditator then gets to the core of its
essence. The object shines in its svarupa or essence.
Ekagrata parinama is the tendencyof the seed or one set of properties
to persist over moments of time without interruption through continual new
arisings of the same object. Because of vibrations and their inherent
discontinuity, the object is not present continuously but only appears to
be because the flicker is too rapid to be perceived rather like the separate
slides in a motion picture film. The mind is said to be concentrated,
and this provides a stationary state in which one particular set of properties
are maintained. The idea of time vanishes, so that the past, and present
come and stand in one.
These three transformations are concerned with eliminating the seed of
samadhi. There is a struggle between two opposite tendencies: 1) tendency
of the seed to arise again in the field of consciousness and 2) tendency
of the mind to remain in the condition of nirodha. So the nirodha parinama
begins the set of transformations as early as dharana, and it also ends each
cycle following after ekagrata parinama and working to reduce
the seed which has been stabilized in that process to its latent potential.
Then the whole cycle repeats on the next level of sabija samadhi. Each
cycle of Nirodha leads directly to an Asamprajnata samadhi until the
final object or seed of the Atmic plane is dropped at which point the Consciousness
of Purusa dawns and direct contact with Reality is achieved.
These three transformations give the meditator complete control over the
Find an hour of free time and sit for meditation. Have a candle
or flower to work with and consciously apply each of the three parinamas
to your concentration on it. Before sitting, make notes on the similarities
and differences between samyama and the parinamas. How do they support
each other? If you feel confused, read Section III: 1-7 on samyama
and Section III: 9-12 on the parinamas in Patanjali’s Sutras. For instance,
compare dharana, dhyana and samadhi with nirodha, samadhi and ekagrata
parinamas. It might help to make a chart.
Patanjali goes from here into explanations of how these transformations
can be applied to various processes in order to gain control over them.
This brings us to a discussion of siddhis.
“And since mental forces lie also at the basis
of physical forces, he can manipulate even physical phenomenon without using
any physical aids.” Taimni, 1975, p. 310
Siddhis are powers or accomplishments that result from attaining higher
states of consciousness. Knowledge and power are two aspects of the
same reality. Direct knowledge brings power with it because what we
understand from the inside, we can control. Everything is subject
to natural law, and natural law can be understood from the inside when we
become one with it through the practice of samyama. There are no miracles
since all of the manifest universe is governed by natural laws. The
mental processes involved in siddhis are internal, subjective, and go beyond
the functions of ordinary mind which is a veil that hides the true characteristics
of consciousness. This is why we have to learn how to use samyama
in order to work with the specific internal processes.
There are two kinds of consciousness involved here. One is the pure
Consciousness (Caitanya) of Purusa who is connected to the Center
of Ultimate Reality in his triple nature of Sat-Cit-Ananda. The
other is conditioned consciousness with which we are all familiar. The
latter is likened to a mirror that reflects the pure Consciousness.
When Purusa gets caught up in experiences in the world, a lack of discrimination
between It and conditioned consciousness occurs. So some kind of disengagement
is necessary in order to transcend the conditioning and achieve liberation
(Kaivalya). In order to do this, we must develop the ability
to discriminate the Real from the unreal (Viveka) and achieve detachment
from things and events in the world (Vairagya).
The stages of the gunas represent different degrees of conditioning.
You will remember these as the particular, the universal, the differentiated
and the undifferentiated. The particular is the stage of the lower
mind which is oriented to names and forms and separated, isolated identities.
The universal corresponds to th functions of the higher mind and deals with
universals, archetypes and principles. The differentiated means
a state of consciousness in which objects and principles are just marks to
discriminate objects from each other. And undifferentiated means objects
and principles lose their separate identities.
We also saw how tamas and rajas are capable of balancing and creating
a sattvic state of consciousness. Now when these three are in equilibrium
they correspond to the liberated state of Purusa as Sat-Cit-Ananda.
Sat, or existence, relates to tamas; Cit, or consciousness, relates to Rajas;
and Ananda, or bliss, relates to sattva.
Bhutas and Indriyas
So the problem becomes one of discovering how to get out of the conditioned
mind and into the Universal Mind, a power called Maha-videha. We can
do this by performing samyama and the parinamas on the elements (bhutas)
and the sense organs (Indriyas) because the relationship between these two
sets of functions is responsible for our relative reality, i.e., what we perceive
on a daily basis. Here we are not talking about the elements as chemicals
nor the sense organs as ears, eyes, etc., but about their essential functions
or tattvas. There are five each of these tattvas, and they are the
ones that connect matter with consciousness. You could say that we
are looking at a bridge between the seen and unseen worlds. Each element
is related to a sense organ, and we have studied these as we progressed through
the chakras, so I will not review them here. Just keep in mind that
while I may use the concrete words, they refer here to essences. The
bhutas are not elements, per se, but principles that are expressed through
the medium of matter and energies of various kinds. Therefore, their
different states are analogous to those of the elements. For instance,
fire in its form of light is associated with vision of the eye. Bhutas
are the stimulators and indriyas are the mechanisms of stimulation.
Sensation occurs as a result of the interaction of these two tattvas.
Table 6-5 shows the relationships with tanmatras added to give you
a feel for the interrelationships. Notice the triadic pattern.
Table 6-5. Bhutas and Indriyas
Stages of Manifestation of Bhutas and Indriyas
There are five levels or stages of manifestation of the bhutas and indriyas
(See Table 6-6). You will notice a progression that is similar to the
stages of the gunas.
|Level of Manifestation
|Idea in Divine Mind of its
|Idea in Divine Mind of its
function to be fulfilled
|Particular combination of
|A mode of motion, specific
combination of gunas
|Particular form or electronic
|Sensation is joined with I-
ness and individualized
|Real form of the element
with definite set of qualities
|Tanmatra, real nature of the
sense, particular type of
|Gross state of the element
expressed in form, e.g.,
solid, liquid, gaseous
|Specific power of cognition
in each particular sense
Table 6-6. Stages of Manifestation of Bhutas and Indriyas
In samyama, we can obtain direct knowledge of these states by becoming
one in consciousness with the object or principle at each level. And
when that occurs, we gain access to the powers inherent in that state of
consciousness; all within the framework of natural laws, of course.
Exercise: Mind and Consciousness Relationship
Here is something for you to reflect on. If mind is the sixth sense
and consciousness is the element of the sixth chakra, what does that suggest
about the relationship between mind and consciousness? What might you
expect to happen if you did samyama on each of these? See if you can
add these two ideas to the tables above in a way that makes sense to you.
You will remember that there were three knots, or granthis, in the chakra
system that block Kundalini’s progress up through the chakras until they
are removed. One was in the first chakra and the second was in the fourth
chakra. Now we have the third and final one in the sixth chakra.
This is found where the ida and pingala nadiis come together at the top of
the susumna. The Rudra Granthi is related to the causal body and to
the world of thought, ideas, visions and intuitions. So to untie the
knot, one must renounce all attachments to these factors and to the siddhis
that accompany them. See Johari (1987) for more information on the
At the sixth chakra level, one begins to acquire siddhis and may experience
“visions and voices” as Underhill says. But these, too, must be renounced
or we can become lost in our intuitive powers, and the new developments that
have resulted from achieving this stage.
Johari (1987, p. 36) summarizes for us: the Brahma Granthi relates
to the physical body and the world of names and forms; the Vishnu Granthi
to the astral (etheric) body and the world of emotions; the Rudra Granthi
to the causal body and the world of thought, ideas, visions and intuitions.
So these are the general categories in which we need to work.
When the last knot is released here, the siddhis then may appear along
with the ability to ascend to the Soma chakra and enter the sheath of bliss
(Ananda). With the appearance of siddhis, the seeker needs holy fear,
sincerity, humility, awareness and discrimination in order not to become
ego-involved with them and thus fall from grace. Please take this caution
very, very seriously.
Exercise: Rudra Granthi
Make a list of all the attachments you still have left in terms of the
three granthis. Note by each one the number of the chakra with
which it is associated. Starting with the first chakra (Brahma Granthi),
assign a priority for releasing each attachment. Then design a systematic
program for deleting all the attachments. If this feels wholly unmanageable,
you might want to begin by listing those you have already given up.
Keep in mind that detachment does not mean you cannot have these items, people
or functions in your life, but only that you are not attached to them.
For example, if you are in doubt, ask yourself how you would feel
about giving them up? If you feel strings attached to them, put them
on your granthi list. For things, imagine that you are about to move
into a much smaller place. What will you take and what leave behind?
Could you live for a year or two in an 8 X 10 room or a hermitage cottage?
For people (Vishnu Granthi), look at who you consider close to you.
Do you actually communicate with them? If not, you are probably not
attached to them. What about clubs, organizations, work associates,
etc.? Narrow your list down to a handful of people you feel you cannot
do without. Then work with those. Again, you are not being asked
to actually do without these people, but to withdraw your co-dependent attachments
to them. We are going to relate to them on a much higher level of the
Higher Self in each of us. That allows us each to be ourselves without
judgment or blame. The Vishnu Granthi knot is also associated with
attachment to spiritual orders, gurus and the spiritual journey as well as
to cultural and social mores and patterns. So we are talking here about
being stuck in ideas, opinions, prejudices, etc.
Examples of Siddhis
Some of the Siddhis that might be related to the Rudra Granthi are:
1. Ability to know the nature of past and future. The passage
of time is due to transformation of the properties, characteristics and states
in things around us. Therefore, when the transformations stop, time
ceases to flow and the individual is able to live in the present as the
2. Knowledge of previous births by direct perception of the impressions
in the causal body which also holds the seeds of karma.
3. Invisibility of the body. Samyama on rupa leads to suspension
of the receptive power. Contact between the eye of the observer and
light from the body is broken. Vision depends upon an interaction between
the rupa tanmatra, the tejas maha-bhuta and the eye. When this interaction
is blocked, one becomes invisible.
4. Knowledge of the time of death. This is when all the karma
to be dealt with in this lifetime is exhausted. One must be able to
trace events to their causes and be able to function consciously in the causal
5. Development of a quality. Samyama fuses the quality to
the mind and then the person can manifest through it.
6. Knowledge of the small, hidden or distant. Superphysical
planes correspond to different levels of consciousness and stages of the
gunas. So samyama on the subtlety of matter opens up all of the subtle
realms of matter.
7. Knowledge of the organization of the body through samyama on
the third chakra. This accesses the body archetype in the Universal
8. Aware of the nature of mind by doing samyama on the heart.
Here we acquire true knowledge of the nature of mind and how it modifies
pure consciousness. The heart is the common center of all the vehicles
of Jivatman and is also the seat of Citta. This has been documented
recently by Paul Pearsall (1998) in the bio-chemical domain.
9. Direct knowledge or intuitional sense. One can perceive
everything without sense organs because one now is identified with Purusa
who is the real perceiver. All knowledge, powers and faculties are
in Purusa already in totality and potentiality.
10. Maha-videha destroys the individual mental body that covers
the light and so releases consciousness into the realm of Universal Mind.
Non-dual conscious-ness is then achieved.
11. Perfection of the body and non-obstruction of its functions
by powers of the elements. This gives mastery of all physical phenomenon
and the ability to regulate body processes. Therefore, when karma is
exhausted, the body reverts to its beautiful archetype.
12. Attainment of Kaivalya, a state of complete freedom. One
is detached from transcendent powers but can still exercise them. Full
realization of our eternal and essential nature. Sat-Cit-Ananda.
Vairagya is necessary.
13. Highest knowledge - full awareness of Reality. The soul
is liberated from conditioned existence and reincarnation. Passing
into the Real, one can live in the relative world while seeing it from a
true perspective. One realizes unity with the Ultimate Reality.
I am That, All is One.
14. All-knowing, all-seeing.
15. Abides in the sheath of bliss.
16. Freedom from time.
17. One becomes a visionary capable of precognition and prophecy
18. Omnipresence, omniscience
19. Egolessness of Dharma
20. Recollection (cf Mysticism by Evelyn Underhill, 1961).
This is not an exhaustive list, but a sample of what is possible when
our true identity is discovered on an experiential level. For more
information, consult one of the versions of Patanjali’s Sutras. I
think the Taimni (1975) one has the most information.
Again I must caution that acquistion of these powers is not meant to become
an end in itself but rather to be given in selfless service. Use of
them to gratify the mind or ego may result in loss of soul and set back progress
on the spiritual journey in a rather drastic and painful manner.
Exercise: Ethics of Siddhis
Write a paper or make a handbook outlining specific cautions about the
acquisition and use of siddhis.
In this unit, we have examined the Turiya form of consciousness,
what it is, how it may be achieved, and its role in the spiritual journey.
Some methods of achieving higher consciousness were offered along with some
information on the siddhis that might result from the practice of samyama.
Harrigan, J. (2002). Kundalini Vidya: The science of spiritual
transformation. Knoxville, TN: Patanjali Kundalini
Johari, H. (1987). Chakras: Energy centers of transformation.
Rochester, VT: Destiny Books.
Mishra, R. (1987). The textbook of Yoga psychology: The
definitive translation and interpretation of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras for
meaningful application in all modern psychologic disciplines. New
York: Julian Press.
Pearsall, P. (1998). The heart’s code: Tapping the wisdom and
power of our heart energy. New York: Broadway
Prabhavananda, Sw. & Isherwood, C. (Transl.) (1953). How
to know God: The Yoga aphorisms of Patanjali. New York: New American
Taimni, I. (1975). The science of Yoga: The Yoga-Sutras
of Patanjali in Sanskrit with transliteration in Roman, translation in English
and commentary. Wheaton, IL: The Theosophical Publishing House.
Tyberg, J. (1970). The language of the gods: Sanskrit keys
to India’s wisdom. Los Angeles: East-West Centre.
Underhill, E. (1961). Mysticism: A study in the nature and development
of man’s spiritual consciousness. New York: E. P. Dutton.
Vivekananda, Sw. (1976). Raja-Yoga or conquering the internal
nature. Calcutta: Advaita Ashrama.
This completes Unit V. Consciousness. The next Unit VI. Light will deal with the role of Light
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