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Introduction to Meditation Techniques No. 94 & 95

94.  Feel your substance, bones, flesh, blood, saturated with the cosmic essence. 

95. Feel the fine qualities of creativity permeating your breasts’ and assuming delicate configurations. 

Philosophers all over the world have been arguing for centuries about what basic stuff the universe is made of, what the substance is. There have been propositions, systems, that say that matter is the basic reality and mind is just an outgrowth, that matter is basic and mind is just a by-product, that mind is also material, only subtle.

Charwak proposed this in India, Epicurus in Greece, and even today, Marxists and other materialists go on talking in terms of matter. Just opposite to this, there has been a second system of thinking which says that mind rather than matter is the basic stuff, and that matter is nothing but a form of mind. Vedanta and other idealist philosophies of the world have reduced everything to mind.

Just at the beginning of this century, it was thought that the materialists had become victorious because physics and other scientific investigations were proving, or appeared to be proving, that matter was the basic substance. But just two or three decades ago the whole thing changed completely. One of the greatest scientists of this age, Eddington, said, “Now we can say that the universe appears to be more like a thought than like a thing.” And as the physicists, Max Planck and Einstein, worked deeper, they came to realize that the deeper one penetrates matter, the more matter disappears — something more than matter, more beyond than matter, appears to be there. You can call it mind more easily than matter because it is a form of energy. One thing is certain: it is not material in the old sense at all.

For Tantra, for yoga, there has been no choice. Tantra doesn’t say that either matter or the mind is the basic reality. Tantra has a third standpoint, and I think that that standpoint is ultimately going to win. Tantra says mind and matter are both forms of something which we can call `X’. Neither matter nor mind is substantial but a third entity, which exists in both but which is not confined to either, is the real — these two are the manifestations. Matter and mind are not realities, but forms of a third reality, a basic reality, which remains hidden. Whenever it manifests itself, it manifests itself either as matter or as mind.

So the whole conflict between mind and matter, and their followers, is baseless, because the ultimate substratum that physics has now come to know is really neither like matter nor like mind. The division has disappeared, the duality has disappeared. The behavior of the basic substance is very vague: sometimes it behaves like matter, and sometimes it behaves like mind. You may be surprised to know that physics cannot say anything about individual atoms — they are unpredictable, just like any human being. Nothing can be said about the individual atom and how it is going to behave. It appears that it has a certain independence; no causality can predict how it is going to behave. We can predict mass behavior, but we cannot predict the behavior of an individual atom. Sometimes it behaves in cause-effect terms, like matter, and sometimes it behaves like mind, as if it has a will of its own, as if it has a choice.

With Tantra, this idea of physics fits very well. But why does Tantra say that the basic reality is the third, the unknown, the `X’? Not because Tantra is interested in propounding any theory about reality, no. It is proposed just as a help for SADHANA, just as a help for spiritual growth. If it is so — that the reality is the third, and mind and matter are just two manifestations — then you can enter the reality through two doors: either from matter or from mind. If you try to enter from matter, then there are certain techniques to use. Hatha Yoga is a technique to enter the reality through matter, through the body. You have to do something with the body, you have to transform the body, you have to crystalize certain chemical phenomena in the body, and then you will enter into the reality.

Or, you can enter directly through the mind. Raja Yoga and other methods are used to enter through the mind. And for Tantra, both are right.

You cannot say to Tantra, “How can a body posture, a particular body posture, be helpful to enter reality?” Tantra says it can be helpful. A certain body posture is not a mere body posture, because body is the manifestation of the reality. So when you give your body a certain posture, you are giving the reality a certain form. And there are postures with which you can easily enter into yourself. A certain food can be helpful. A certain practice of breathing can be helpful. These are material things — food, breathing, body. But you can enter through them.

And similar is the case with mind: just working with mind also you can enter. Many times the question may have arisen in your mind about Shiva telling Parvati certain techniques which look just imaginary. The question is bound to arise — how can imagination be helpful?

Even imagination is a mode of reality because the mind is a manifestation of reality. And when you change the imagination in the mind, you are changing the mode of reality. For Tantra nothing is unreal. Even a dream has its own reality — and it affects you. So a dream is not a mere dream. A dream is as real as anything else because it affects you, it changes you. You are different because you dreamed it; you will never be the same because a certain dream has happened. So if you dream that you are a thief, in the morning you will say that it makes no different, it was just a dream. But for Tantra it is not so. A dream of stealing, of theft, has changed you. Your reality is different in the morning; you cannot be the same. Whether you recognize it or not, it has affected you. It will affect your behavior, your future — it has become a seed.

Even a dream is not irrelevant. And you think that dreams are just dreams. That is not so, because you cannot create a dream consciously, you cannot choose a dream. It happens to you as anything else happens to you. Can you choose a dream? Can you think about a dream that you will dream tonight? Can you choose it? Can you will it? You cannot will it, because to will a dream will need many changes in your reality. Only then will a dream come. A dream is just like a flower. A rose flower comes on a rose bush, and you cannot change the flower unless you change the whole process, from the seed onwards. You cannot just change the flower. A dream is a flowering. If you can change the dream, you can change reality.

So, many times, many techniques will appear imaginary — but they are also real. And Tantra is trying to change your imagination. If the imagination can be changed, then the hidden reality behind it will automatically be different.

The techniques that we will discuss today start from your imagination, from your dreaming, from your mind. Three things have to be remembered. One: whatsoever happens to your mind is not superficial — it is happening because of you, it is happening because you happen to be in a certain situation. So two things can be done: either change the situation, then you will have to start from the body because body is the situation; or if you are not starting with the situation, then change the happening. It will persist, it will not be easy to change it, but if you make an effort and you go on making the effort, if you are stubborn and are not defeated, then the very effort will change it.

One thing is certain: you may not achieve the goal that you were thinking of, but the fact that you make this effort will bring a change. You will be different: whether you succeed or fail, you will be different. The very effort will be counted.

Thirdly, don’t think that mind is just mind, and don’t think that dreaming is just dreaming. If you can direct your dreaming — and now there is a therapy in the West called `Directed Daydreaming’ — if you can direct your dreaming, you are directing yourself. And many things will become different.

There is an old Tibetan technique called `The Lion’s Roar’. If you are angry, sexual, filled with hatred, jealousy, then the Tibetan master will give you this technique, `The Lion’s Roar’. You have to sit before a mirror, and you are to imagine that you are a lion, not a man. You have to make your face like a lion, you have to put your tongue out, and you have to roar. And you have to practise it so that the imagination becomes so true that you forget that you are a man daydreaming that he is a lion. And when the point comes when you have really fallen prey to your own imagination, and you have become the lion, and a real roar comes out of you, suddenly you are transformed. In that roar, all hatred, anger, sex, disappears, and you will fall into a deep silence such as you have not known before. In old Tibetan monasteries they have a special room with many mirrors. Whenever someone is suffering from something like anger, hatred, or jealousy, he is to be sent to that mirrored room and he has to remain there until he comes to a climax. And when he comes to the climax, the whole monastery will know, because a real lion will be roaring there. To us, he has gone mad. The whole monastery will gather and welcome the man, and he will come out a totally different man. It may take three days, it may take seven days. Food will be supplied to him, but he is not allowed to come out. He has to persist in imagining that he is a lion, until from the very roots of the unconscious the roar comes. The whole body is involved, every cell of it; every cell in it roars, and in that roar everything is thrown out. It is the deepest catharsis possible. And you will never see that man angry again because now the poison is not there. For the first time the face will become human.

Your face cannot be human because so much is suppressed there. The jealousy, the hatred, the anger that you have suppressed, is there — layers upon layers are just hidden under the skin. They are making your face. But they can be released — just by this daydream, a directed daydream.

In the West they now have another technique they call psychodrama. That too is one of the oldest Buddhist methods — to become a part of a drama, to act it so totally that you forget that you are simply acting. The acting becomes action, and you are not the actor, you become a real doer in it. It changes you.

Tantra says that if you can change dreaming, imagination, if you can change your mind and the pattern of it, the reality behind will be different. Because it is deeply rooted in reality, you can move through the mind. These techniques are just to change the way and the style in which your mind has been behaving up to now.

Next hand Meditation Technique No. 94

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