The First Purusha – Bhagavad Gita, Ch 15, Vs 3-4

Purushottama
Purushottama

THOUGHT:  Does not the phrase, “Thou shalt have no other gods before Me,” suggest that there are other gods? And does not the word ‘before’ suggest a secession with one specific god as first? 

CONSIDER THIS:  The first god, a Divine Individual in the Absolute, was the first to accept all other Divine Individuals as the same as Himself. To Us (all the other Divine Individuals), this First Divine Individual is our Personal God known as Purushottama, ‘first and highest god (Divine Individual)’.

NOTE: Him, He, Himself, etc., are not meant to be gender specific. 

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In this world, the Ashvattha tree’s form is not perceptible — not now, not in the past nor will it become so in the future. This tree, with its well-grown roots, must be cut asunder by the strong axe of detachment.

Our situation symbolized by the Ashvattha tree is not obvious to us. Here in this world, we cannot see the depth of our situation as illustrated by this tree. It is strongly rooted, and we are unaware of it, not realizing the hidden tendencies represented by it, and the power they have over us. 

Step One – Notice

It is not our desires themselves that bind us, but our attachment to them. These attachments keep us in bondage and limit our lives. Just as the world is full of secrets and secret societies because hiding things gives them more power, many of our own attachments are hidden from us. We must ferret them out in order to overcome their influence.

We do this by separating ourselves from the things brought into the mind by the senses. This is where desires, and our attachments to them, originate. The first step for releasing their hold, is to NOTICE them. By this, we detach ourselves from our desires, even though they still exist. By ‘looking’ at them they lose their power, and you are separated from them.

(1) Whatever you see, or look at, is other than you, separate.

(2) You can’t be what you’re looking at (that would beg the question, “Who’s looking?”). 

As long as we are attached to our desires, we are bound by them because we are identified with our attachments to them — we think this is who we are. When attachment is broken, we are set free. The thing we were attached to may remain, but we are no longer its slave. 

Step Two – Surrender

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Then one must seek that place where, once having gone, one will not return again, and approach the haven of that First Purusha from whom activity anciently streamed forth, and surrender at His feet.

Spiritual HeartNext we must surrender to the Divine, to God, by which we go to this place of non-return, where we will experience for ourselves that our desires need not be chased and captured. These desires, which made us vulnerable to enslavement, do not live here. And now that we have experienced this, even though we inevitably fall back into our normal state of consciousness, we know what we are really looking for, and that these old desires don’t hold a candle to it.

When you let it go of something you want, it can come to you.

This surrender is the essence of “detachment”, which turns out to be a simple thing, and has little to do with giving up or keeping all the things our minds tell us we want to have or to keep.

Once you have been to this place yourself, you are liberated from the cycles of death and rebirth. This place, this haven, is where you will find that First Purusha (Divine Individual) who first accepted You as the same as Himself. This is your Personal God.

This First Purusha is Absolute and so are You. His acceptance of You as the same as Himself, united Him with You. When you accept Him as the same as yourSelf, it is a marriage made in heaven, and your entryway into this heavenly abode. This is called Yoga (‘union’).   

For most human beings, a personal God is more appealing than an abstract Absolute. While one way is not better than the other, the idea of approaching your own Personal God may seem easier and more relevant. And by encountering this Personal God, you reach the Absolute anyway.

Seek and Surrender

Pranama, Bowing Down to Guru

Seek God and surrender at his feet. By surrendering to God, you abandon your ego. You effectively give it to God. By placing your ego at God’s feet, you free yourself from the tyranny of the ego, that sneaky deceiver behind all attachments. This is why one bows at the guru’s feet. If you cannot do this, you cannot truly surrender. 

“God and Guru are two names, but the Truth is that they are forever One.” — Guru Gita 

The dissolution of attachment will begin when you sincerely bow down at your guru’s feet. By this gesture, the power of the ego begins to dissolve, taking attachments with it. This is the purpose of this practice. By it, you will come to God, and you will find that haven where once having gone, you will not be compelled to return again.

What you really are is not different from what God really is.

Namaste (I bow to the divine one that you really are),
Durga Ma
durgama.com

Surrender Meditation

Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga
Spontaneous Experiential Meditation

Slip into a natural state of meditation with ease. Experience the relief of reaching a true meditative state without any effort and without using your will.

Receive shaktipat and become initiated into the original meditation of ancient masters from which meditation techniques were eventually derived.

Increase your knowledge base and begin Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga, Surrender Meditation. Though correct knowledge you will increase your progress by a thousand times, and bring about even deeper meditation and amazing experiences.

Shaktipat Intensives with Durga Ma are held in Phoenix, Arizona


“Every step you take pulls every one of us with you.”

The Whole World Is One Family


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To Understand Yoga, Stand on Your Head – Bhagavad Gita, Ch 15, Vs 1-2

Ashvattha Tree

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The Blessed Lord spoke:
It is said that the Ashvattha tree has its roots above and its branches below, and that its leaves are the Vedic aphorisms. He who knows this tree, is a knower of the Vedas.

  • Vedic aphorisms, or sutras, are similar to what we would call ‘sayings’, that teach something specific.
  • Vedic, concerning the Vedas. The word veda means ‘sacred knowledge, knowledge of Truth’. The Vedas are a large body of knowledge texts originating in ancient India around 1500 BCE, constituting the oldest layer of Sanskrit literature, and the oldest scriptures of Hinduism.

Yogeshwar was fond of saying, “To understand Yoga, you have to stand on your head.” And here we have an upside down tree! So let’s run with it.

Ashvattha Tree 1The Ashvattha tree represents the upside-down purpose of chasing desires. This action is contrary (upside-down) to Truth, hence its roots are above and its branches are below, signifying moving away from God/Truth and down into the earth, the mundane world. Facing endlessly downwards it represents those persons who misuse their lives by acting solely for the purpose of fulfilling desires. In this respect it appears to be indestructible, and yet, as far as the yogi is concerned, this is not maintained for even a day.

Trying to satisfy desires is upside-down because there is nothing you can desire that you don’t already have. You have but to call it to you.

If we think of this tree as the Tree of Life, the message is that we’re seeing Life upside down. We’ve got our roots in the wind and our branches buried in the ground, the earth, the mundane world.

Every time you use your will to get what you want, you move yourself farther away from God/Truth. Yet realizing God and your Real Self is why you are here!

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Below and above it spreads, fully developed by the gunas, with the objects of the senses as new branches. Below, the roots keep growing downward, engendering binding action in the world of man.

  • Gunas – The three modes of Nature.
  • Sense objects – Anything perceptible by the senses (sight, sound, taste, touch, and smell).  
  • Binding action – ‘Binding’ (anubandhana) is ‘the state of being a slave’. ‘Action’ (karma) refers to action that binds — acting for self motivated purposes.  

Sense objects are all the things we are made aware of by means of our senses, and which we either like or dislike to varying degrees. We act in order to have the ones we like, and avoid the ones we don’t like. In this way we live in bondage to our senses and our desires, and are constantly collecting more karma that keeps us bound to die and return over and over again, like a merry-go-round that just keeps going around in circles and never gets anywhere.

Acting for the purpose of fulfilling desires is not ‘bad’, it just stops your progress.  

Isn’t happiness what you really want? Isn’t that why you try to fulfill your desires? But your efforts to get desires fulfilled are upside-down — the result is the very opposite of what you want. This is what this verse is trying to tell us.

Remember that what you want or need is already yours. You have but to call it to you.

We are slaves to our desires and the price is bondage. This is upside down from how we really are — it is contrary to our Real Selves, who should properly be situated Above.

  • Aśhvattha – ‘where the horses are’.  Aśhva means ‘horse’, and represents the senses. Tha means ‘stay, stand or dwell’. ‘Where the horses dwell’. The Ashvattha tree is the body and the horses are the physical senses. Submitting to their influence keeps us where we are — we don’t move forward. Why? Because we are acting in opposition to our Real Selves. 

The Real You knows everything.
The Real You has everything.

Thus the Aśhvattha tree is cast in the role of samsara, the bondage of recurring deaths and births, and samskara, the continual resurfacing of previous tendencies. We must cut this tree in order to be free. How do we do this? The remainder of this chapter will tell us how.

What you want or need is already yours. You have but to call it to you.

Namaste (I bow to the divine one that you really are),
Durga Ma
durgama.com

Surrender Meditation

Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga
Spontaneous Experiential Meditation

Slip into a natural state of meditation with ease. Experience the relief of reaching a true meditative state without any effort and without using your will.

Receive shaktipat and become initiated into the original meditation of ancient masters from which meditation techniques were eventually derived.

Increase your knowledge base and begin Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga, Surrender Meditation. Though correct knowledge you will increase your progress by a thousand times, and bring about even deeper meditation and amazing experiences.

Shaktipat Intensives with Durga Ma are held in Phoenix, Arizona


“Every step you take pulls every one of us with you.”

The Whole World Is One Family


Royal Yoga, Bhagavad Gita, Ch 14, Vs 21-27, Continued

From left to right: Kali (darkness), tamas. Lakshmi (wealth and pleasure), ramas. Saraswati (music and learning), sattva.
Trinity of Goddesses from left to right:  Kali (destroyer of darkness and dissolution, tamas). Lakshmi (bringer of wealth and pleasure, rajas). Saraswati (giver of music and learning, sattva).

All action occurs in Nature. The gunas are the active influences of Nature, but you are not Nature. The Real You is not involved in action at all.

The varying degrees of predominance of the gunas cause certain kinds of actions. This chapter has given examples of the influence of each guna. The state of trigunatita (‘three-gunas-gone beyond’) surfaces when the individual is not in a state of assuming doership. This takes place over time through meditation, and eventually becomes the full and complete state of trigunatita.

Three Gunas of Nature (Prakriti) holding people down, with Lord Krishna above it all.
The Three Gunas of Nature (Prakriti) ensnaring people, with Lord Krishna above it all, trigunatita.

When trigunatita has been achieved, the three gunas continue to cause action in Nature, but they do not affect you. You are not influenced by them.

For the Embodied One, even though actions occur in Nature, he is not the doer of actions. All actions are the interactions of the gunas of Nature, and nothing else.

“All action occurs in Nature, but You are not Nature.” If this statement concerning non-doership causes you to wonder what is, this is your answer: the gunas.

Sitting here writing this for you, action is taking place. If I am trigunatita, this action is not taking place under the influence of any guna. Instead, it is under the influence of God, Truth itself, for That is my surrender.

Any action occurring after trigunatita has been achieved, is influenced by Truth Itself.


Approaching the End of the Journey

“Thy will be done, O Lord, not mine.” — Lord Jesus

In the body from the sixth chakra up is Rudra Loka, the world of Rudra (Rudra is another name for Shiva). This is the realm of the storm gods, where Kundalini takes a new name: Maruti, ‘wind’. The name Rudra means ‘roaring, terrifying, wild, fierce’ and also ‘auspicious and kind’. This is where Raja Yoga takes place. It is the last frontier of the journey Home.

Awaking Kundalini
Sun-Moon Union Awakens Kundalini

In this phase of Yoga, the guna of tamas (darkness), the least active of the three gunas, ushers in the onset of  trigunatita  (‘three-gunas-gone beyond’).

This is one of those places where everything seems to be upside-down and one becomes confused. But this is only because, as a human being, you find yourself once again in unfamiliar territory. But this time it is so different that it may seem down right scary. Tamas, darkness, has gotten a bad rap before this, but now it is the star player. Instead of being a word for delusion and ignorance, it is the literal absence (darkness) of delusion and ignorance, and the doorway to the Absolute at the crown chakra.

Three Gunas: States of Mind and Stages of Yoga

Rudra Loka

Rudra is the agent of the dissolution of delusion and ignorance. It is here in Rudra’s World that nirbija samadhi appears. In this samadhi, no-thing exists but Absolute God/Truth, so there is no light, for it would serve no purpose. All is revealed, and one now understands that it is Lord Shiva in the form of Rudra who defeats evil, impurities and fear, leaving only Truth.

Ascent of Kundalini
Royal Union is Ascendent Kundalini

Raja Yoga means ‘Royal Union’, the union of you and Absolute God. Before this, union was ‘sun-moon union’, Hatha Yoga, the awakening of Kundalini. This phase was centered in the body below the sixth chakra, but in the stage of Raja Yoga, most of the work is going on in the head where endocrine glands take the leading role.

In the Absolute there is nothing, not even light. Having reached this place and trying to describe it to others, it may seem to them that you are dealing with a great darkness. So you learn not to talk about it. But for you, this darkness is the rolling bliss of certain Truth and non-stop Happiness. Later, all you have to do is to remember this and it’s right there.

Obstacles to Yoga

Non-achievement refers to not reaching a state or stage that one believes is imminent. It may be that one does not reach the expected stage. Or it may be that one has expectations as to how the that stage will look, and because his experience does not match his expectations, he assumes non-achievement when achievement is starring him in the face. Or he may assume the worst and stop his sadhana in defeat. Or, if he is persistent, he continues his sadhana and the Truth is revealed.

Bhrānti darśana means ‘incorrect seeing’. One might be fooled into thinking he has reached a higher state or stage than he has. He may assume that he has reached sainthood, for instance, or even godhood. He may believe he is the incarnation of a god, or even that he is Jesus Christ returned. This stops his sadhana and he makes no further progress, unless he comes to realize his mistake and moves forward.

Kundalini Fully Awakened
Fully Awakened Kundalini

It is because of these two obstacles that your guru will insist that you continue your sadhana no matter what. If you are devoted (committed) to your guru, you will take his or her advice, for this is the only way you will get past these two walls. Then…

You will enter into Brahman, Absolute God. And because Absolute God is Immortal and of unending Happiness, this is now Your state.

Namaste (I bow to the divine one that you really are),
Durga Ma
durgama.com

Surrender Meditation

Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga
Spontaneous Experiential Meditation

Slip into a natural state of meditation with ease. Experience the relief of effortlessly reaching a true meditative state without using your will.

Receive shaktipat and become initiated into the original meditation of ancient masters from which meditation techniques were derived.

Increase your knowledge base and begin Shaktipat Kundalini Yoga: Surrender Meditation. Though correct knowledge you will increase your progress by a thousand times, and bring about even deeper meditation and amazing experiences.

Shaktipat Intensives with Durga Ma are held in Phoenix, Arizona


“Every step you take pulls every one of us with you.”

The Whole World Is One Family