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27 June, 2013



       The Sanskrit word bindu  means 'drop' or 'point'.  But the name of the centre we are talking about is actually bindu visarga which literally means 'falling of the drop'.  The drop referred to is amrit, the immortalizing nectar.  It is this particular secretion which maintains the life of yogis who undertake such feats as being buried alive for forty days without food, water or oxygen.  It controls all possible process of metabolism, produces nutrition and the required quantity of oxygen.  Bindu is the seat of this nectar.


       The location point for bindu is at the top back of the head, where Brahmins have a tuft of hair.  Today Brahmins only keep this tuft of hair to show that they are Brahmins, but traditionally the tuft of hair was pulled tight and twisted, creating tension right on the centre of bindu.  This was the best method of gaining awareness of bindu which incidentally has no kshetram.  Bindu is directly connected with vishuddhi by a particular network of nerves which flow through the interior portion of the nasal orifice passing through lalana (a minor chakra which is responsible for storing and secreting amrit).  Lalana is not a centre of awakening, nor is bindu.  When awakening takes place in vishuddhi it also occurs in bindu and lalana.

       Bindu is a centre of nada yoga.  There is not one particular sound in bindu, but many, many sounds.  When practising nada yoga one should concentrate on bindu.

       Symbolically bindu is represented by both a full moon and a crescent moon.  The full moon is the infinitesimally small drop of nectar and the crescent moon is associated with the phases of the moon.  In the same way that the moon is progressively revealed during the period from new moon to full moon, so immensity of sahasrara behind the bindu can be gradually unveiled through yogic sadhana.  The bindu is drawn on the background of the night sky indicating that the basis of the bindu, the saharasrara, is infinite.  For the awakening of bindu there are no specific practices.  Once vishudhi becomes active it will have a consequential influence on bindu.


      The Sanskrit word sahasrara means 'one thousand'.  Although sahasrara is represented by a lotus with one thousand petals, the 'one thousand' literally implies that its magnitude and significance is vast, in fact, unlimited.  Sahasrara is shoonya, the void.  It is difficult to discuss sahasrara for its transcends concepts and words and is beyond experience, for the experience, the experienced and the experiencer are one and the same.  Sahasrara is the merging of consciousness and prana.  It is culmination of yoga, it is yoga itself, the perfect union.  When one gains mastery over sahasrara he becomes free in all states; he becomes rooted in happiness and free from grief and bondage.  With the blossoming of sahasrara the yogi is said to acquire various psychic powers but if he can free himself from attachment to such powers, he may then become the knower of the supreme and acquire every kind of knowledge.


       Once you have become familiar with the exact location of each chakra, you can start to practise the two advanced techniques which follows:

Chakra anusadhana

       This is one of the first kriya yoga practices which, in english can be translated as 'search for the chakras'.  In this kriya and in other kriyas you are required to move your awareness through two psychic passages called the arohan and the awarohan. The path of these passage is as follows:


       Arohan is the ascending psychic passage which starts from mooladhara chakra, travel forward to swadhisthana kshetram in the public area, then travels upward through the kshetrams of manipura, anahata and vishuddhi, then in a straight line to bindu at the back of the head.


       Awarohan is the descending passage which starts at bindu, travels forward to ajna chakra, then down through sushumna in the spine, passing through all the chakra points in turn to finally terminate at mooladhara.

      These two passage ways join at bindu and mooladhara.  They are widely known through the world, especially in mystical circles and healing systems such as acupuncture in which arohan is yang and awarohan is yin.


Sit in a comfortable meditative posture, preferably siddhasana or siddha yoni asana.  Make the spine erect, relax the whole body and close the yes.

Breathing normally, focus your awareness at mooladhara chakra.

Now ascend your awareness through the arohan passage way passing in turn through swadhisthana, manipura, anahata, vishuddhi, until it reaches bindu.  As you pass through each kshetram, mentally say the name of the centre.

When you reach bindu, immediately let your awareness descend through the awarohan passage to mooladhara.  Mentally repeat the name of each chakra as your awareness passes through it:  ajna, vishuddhi, anahata, manipura, swadhishthana, mooladhara.

This completes one round or circuit of awareness.  You should immediately start a second round by moving your awareness upwards through the arohan passage, again mentally repeating the name of each centre as you pass through it.

Do not make tense efforts to locate the chakra and shetram points.  Let your awareness flow through the centres without effort.  Imagine that each centre is a railway station, and that your awareness is like a train that passes through them without stopping.

The centres should be regarded as though they are part of the psychic scenery.  Alternatively, you can visualize your awareness as a thin silver serpent travelling an elliptical path within the body.  Practice 3 rounds and gradually icnrease to a amximum of 9 rounds.

Altar visualization

Sit in a comfortable cross-legged meditative posture.  Your body should be relaxed but erect, with your head, neck and chest in a straight line.  Eyes closed.

Take your awareness to mooladhara chakra and visualize an altar of fire there.  It is triangular in shape with the flames forming the upper point of the triangle.

You can see the flames rising from the altar and illuminating the whole of the spinal column.  Practise ujjayi pranayma with kchechari mudra for a few minutes.

Now as you inhale, visualize the flames shooting up through sushumna nadi and momentarily illuminating and warming each chakra, then finally passing out of the body through sahasrara.

You must try to hear the steady sounds of the fire.  As you exhale you should try to see and hear the arousal of the flames in mooladhara.

Practise 3 rounds.

Then with each exhalation, either mentally or aloud, and in harmonization with the sounds of the fire, chant the mantra Om.

Notice how it causes the fire to burn brighter.

Prefer a maximum of 7 rounds with the feeling that you are being absorbed in the altar of fire.

Source:  Excerpts from the book on "Sure-ways of Self Realization" by Swami Satyananda Saraswati.

17 June, 2013



       Our reflection on the psychic centres, begins from ajna chakra.  According to traditions, mooladhara chakra is generally designed as the first chakra since it is the seat of kundalini shakthi.  However, there is another system in which consideration and study of the chakras commence from ajna.

      Ajna chakra is the point of confluence where the three main nadis or forces - ida, pingala and sushumna, merge into one stream of consciousness and flow up to sahasrara, the crown centre.  In mythology, these three nadis are represented by the three great rivers - Ganga (ida), Jamuna (pingala) and Saraswati (a subterranean current which represents sushumna).  They converge at a place called Prayag or Triveni, which is near present day Allahabad.  Indians believe that every twelve years, when the sun is in Aquarius, if one takes dip at the point of confluence, he or she will be purified.  This place of confluence corresponds symbolically to ajna chakra.

       When the mind is concentrated at this conjunctions, transformation of individual consciousness is brought about by the merging of the three great forces.  Individual consciousness is mainly comprised of ego, and it is on account of ego that we are aware of dualities.  As long as there is duality, there cannot be samadhi; as long as you remember yourself, you cannot get out of yourself.

       Although there are experiences of trance in the other chakras, there is no merger of the individual ego with the cosmic ego.  All throughout you find you are trying to assert yourself behind all the experiences you are having, but ida and pingala unite with sushumna in ajna chakra, you lose yourself completely.

      By this I do not mean that you become unconscious. Your awareness expands and becomes homogeneous.  The individual awareness falls flat and you completely transcend the realm of duality.  Therefore, ajna chakra is a very important centre, which you must experience in order to bring about purification of the mind.  Once the mind is purified, the experience and awakening of the other chakras can proceed.

       There is a certain problem with the awakening of the other chakras.  Each of these chakras contain within it a store of karmas or samskaras, which may be both good and bad, positive or negative, painful or pleasant.  The awakening of any chakra will bring to the surface an explosion or an expression of these karmas, and not everybody is prepared or ready to face them.  Only those who are equipped with reason and understanding can cope.  Therefore, it is aid that, before you start awakening and manifesting the great force, it is best to purify the mind at the point of confluence.  Then, with the purified mind, you can awaken all the other chakras.  Therefore, we begin our exposition of the chakra with ajna.

The centre of command

       The word ajna comes from the Sanskrit root which means 'to know, to obey or to follow'.  Literally, ajna means 'command' or 'the monitoring centre'.  In astrology ajna is the centre of Jupiter, which symbolizes the guru or preceptor.  Amongs tge deities, Jupiter is represented by Brihaspathi, the guru of the devas and preceptor of the gods.  Therefore, this centre is also known as 'the guru chakra'.

       Ajna is the bridge which links the guru with the disciples.  It represents the level at which it is possible for direct mind to mind communication to take place between two people.  It is in this chakra that communications with the external guru, teacher or preceptor takes place.  And it is here that the directions of the inner guru are heard in the deepest state of meditations, when all the sense modalities are withrawn and one enters the state of shoonya or void.

       This is a state of absolute nothingness, whee the empirical experiences of name and form, subject and object, do not penetrate.  In this completely static state, the light of the mind is extinguished; the consciousness ceases to function, and no ego awareness remains.  This void state is the same as the death experience, and in order to traverse it the voice or command of the guru must be heard in ajna chakra.

       Of course, if you are new to spiritual life you will not be facing this problem yet, but when it comes you will find it very difficult to manage.  At the moment your problems are just mental - dispersion of mind, worries, anxiety, restlessness etc., but when the night is dark and you have gone very deep in meditation, losing your individual awareness, the only thing that can guide you at this point is the instructions or command of your guru heard through ajna chakra.

       It has also been called 'the eye of intuition', and it is the doorway through which the individual enters the astral and psychic dimension of consciousness.  Perhaps, the most common name for this chakra is 'the third eye', and the mystical traditions of every age and culture make abundant references to it.  It is portrayed as psychic eye located midway between the two physical eyes and it looks inward instead of outward.

       In India, ajna chakra called divya chakshu the divine ye), jana chakshu or jnana netra (the eye of knowledge because it is the channel through which the spiritual aspirant receives revelation and insight into the underlying nature of existence.  It is also called 'the eye of Shiva', for Shiva is the epitome of meditation, which is directly associated with the awakening of ajna chakra.

       It is interesting to note that ajna chakra is more active in females than in males.  Women are more sensitive, psychic and perspective and they are often able to predict coming events.  However, in most people this inner ye remains closed, and though they see the events of the outside world, knowledge and understanding of truth cannot be gained.  In this sense, we are blind to the real possibilities of the world, unable to view the deeper levels of human existence.  

Meaning of world Ajna Chakra

       The Sanskrit word ajna means 'command'.  Ajna chakra is the guru chakra.  It is the centre through which the guru communicates with his disciples.  It is also the place where the inner guru resides and directs.

       Ajna chakra has many other names such as the eye of intution, the eye of Shiva, the third eye, to name but a few.


       The location point of ajna chakra is in the centre of the brain at the top of the spine.  However, this is a difficult area to locate, so in yogic practices bhrumadhya, the eyebrow centre is utilized.  Ajna and bhrumadhya are directly connected by psychic passage.  Ajna is also directly linked to the pineal gland.


       Ajna chakra is the confluence of the three great forces (ida, pingala and sushumna) which link all the chakras.  Thus ajna is a very important centre which must be greatly purified before one commences to awaken the other chakras.  It is directly connected with mooladhara chakra and if any awakening take place in ajna it is first experience in mooladhara.  Both these chakras contain the inverted triangle shakti.


       Ajna is the centre of wisdom and  intuition.  When this chakra is awakened the mind becomes a perfect instrument, steady, reliable and free of all attachments.  Willpower becomes very strong and all goals are achieved.  One gains full control of his prana and can distribute it to all parts of his body and outside at will.  With the awakening of ajna, siddhis (psychic powers), are likely to manifest in accordance with one's mental tendencies.

Manas chakra

       The tattwa [principle] and karmendriya of ajna is mind [manas].  


       A silver coloured lotus with two petals represents ajna chakra.


       The yantra is clear circle.


       The bija [seed] mantra is Om.


       The vehicle of ajna is nada, unbroken sound.

       Whether directly or indirectly, almost all yogic practices are concerned with awakening ajna chakra.  The following will simultaneously develop sensitivity to the location of ajna and bhrumadhya; trataka (steady gazing) on a candle flame, chidakasha dharna, shambhavi mudra (gazing at space between eyebrow).

Shambhavi Mudra (eyebrow centre gazing)

Sit in any comfortable meditative pose.

Close the eyes and relax the whole body.

Look forward at a fixed point.

Then without moving the head, look upward and inward, focusing the eyes at the eyebrow centre.

Hold the gaze for only a few seconds at first.

Release at the slightest sensation of strain.

Close your eyes and relax them.

Concentrate on this centre and let your thoughts dwell on teh supreme consciousness, your inner guru.

Start with 5 rounds and gradually increase upto 10 over a period of time.

Source: Excerpts from the book on "The Sure ways for self-realization" by Swamy Satyananda Saraswati.

09 June, 2013



       The Sanskrit word vishuddhi means 'purification', therefore this chakra is usually translated as the 'purification centre.  It is the centre that purifies and harmonizes all opposites.  Vishuddhi is often called 'the centre of nectar' because it is the level of being where poison and nectar, good and bad, etc., are united into a common experience of bliss.


       Vishuddhi location point is situated in the spine directly behind the throat pit and the kshetram is in the throat where the thyroid gland is situated.


       Awakening of vishuddhi chakra is responsible for the  maintenance of health, youth and longevity.  When vishuddhi is functioning, degenerated tissues become rejuvenated and disease will not manifest.  One can also completely overcome the need for food and drink.

       Vishuddhi chakra is responsible for picking up the thoughts from the minds of others.  Although people are not aware of it, vishuddhi is actually the centre where the thought waves are received and conducted to the respective centres in the brain.

       Vishuddhi is the centre where one is ready to accept the world for what it is, taking the good with the bad.  The nectar and the poison are both consumed and there is no ill effect from the poison.  One will be able to perceive the sense and intelligence behind all happenings and will be able to flow with the current of life.  He becomes compassionate, peaceful and full of bliss.  It is said that a person who has activated vishuddhi chakra knows all the scriptures without needing to read them. 

Symbolism of Vishuddi 

       The tattwa (principle) of this chakra is ether (akasha).  Vishuddhi is closely related to the sense of hearing and the karmendriya or organ of action is the vocal cords.


       Vishuddhi chakra is represented as a purple lotus with sixteen petals.


       The yantra is a circle, as white as full moon.


       The bija [seed] mantra is ham.  


       The animal which serves as the vehicle of vishuddhi is a pure white elephant.

Jalandhara Bandha (throat lock)

Sit in any meditation posture which allows the knees to firmly touch the floor.

Place the palms of the hands on top of the knees.

Close the eyes and relax the whole body.

INHALE slowly and deeply, and retain the breath inside.

While retaining the breath, bend the head forward and press the chin tightly against the chest.

Straighten the arms and lock them firmly into position.

Simultaneously hunch the shoulders upwards and forward.

This will ensure that the arms stay locked.

Hold this position for as long as you can comfortably retain the breath.

Then relax the shoulders, bend the arms, slowly release the lock, raise the head and exhale.

This is one round.

Practise 3 rounds and gradually increase to 10 rounds.

All your breath to return to normal after each round.

Vishuddhi Dhyana

Focus your awareness at vishuddhi kshetram.

As you inhale imagine that the breath is coming in through vishuddhi kshetram and passes through to the chakra in the spine.

As you exhale chant the mantra ham continuously and rhythmically until the exhalation is complete:  ham-ham-ham-ham-ham and send the mantra forward to vishuddhi kshetram.

Concentrate fully on the sound of the mantra and feel its vibrations resonating in vishuddhi.


Become aware of chidakasha and an infinite space.

Visualize an elephant manifesting in this space.  A huge white elephant...snow white elephant symbolizing purification of the grosser aspects of one's nature.

Now visualize a a full moon...A white circle...yantra of vishuddhi chakra and the elephant either.

Expand your vision outward.  See vishuddhi as a purple lotus.  A purple lotus with sixteen petals.  

Slowly the lotus begins to turn...sixteen purple petals going around and around... spinning lotus...whirling vortex of primal energy.  

See yourself being drawn onto this spinning whirlpool of energy.  

Merge into it and feel its energy pulsating through your body.

When this vision fades, become aware of your natural breath.  

Awareness of your body and its surroundings.

Chant Om 3 times, then slowly open your eyes.

Source:  Excerpts from the book on "SURE WAYS TO SELF-REALIZATION" by Swami Satyananda Saraswati.

02 June, 2013



       The Sanskrit world anahata means 'unstruck' or 'unbeaten'.  Anahata is the centre of unbeaten sound.  It is a cosmic sound which is continuous and in not caused by two objects hitting each other.  The physical trigger point of anahata chakra is in the spine directly behind the centre of the chest, in line with the heart.  Anahata kshetram is at the heart.

       Anahata chakra is considered to be the seat of Shiva and Shakti.  These two great forces are depicted in anahata as an upright and an inverted triangle.  They are interlinked, indicating that they are in union.  The result is this union is expressed in creativity.  Anahata is connected with that particular part of the brain which is responsible for all kinds of creative and artistic ability.  When one is at the level of anahata he expresses greater creativity, whether in the field of science, art, music, writing or whatever.

       It is said that in this present age, the people of the world are passing through a phase of anahata.  It means that anahata chakra has begun to function in many, many people.  Being the centre of emotions, anahata is very powerful.  When one creates an image in his mind he can visualize it in anahata.  When a mantra is chanted its vibrations should be felt resonating through the body from anahata.

Anahata - wish fulfilling centre

       According to tantric scriptures, anahata is the wish fulfilling centre.  When a person is at the level of anahata he finds he attains all that he hopes for, and if he makes a resolve it is certain to come true.  One must be very careful that his thoughts are pure and positive.  However, it is highly unlikely that anyone with evil intentions could rise to this level.

       Anahata chakra is the centre where one begins to love everyone and all things  unconditionally.  Tolerance develops and all things are accepted and loved for what they are.  One realizes that although people and objects may have gross aspects and differences, they really are embodiments of perfection.

Symbolism behind Anahata Chakra

       Anahata is a symbolic of the air (vayu) tattwa [principle] and is closely related with the sense of touch or feeling and with the movement of the hands.  It is represented as a blue lotus with twelve petals.  

Appearance - Yantra

       The yantra is a six pointed star formed from the two interlaced triangles.  The inverted triangle is the symbol of Shakti (creativity) and the upright triangle is Shiva (consciousness).  

Seed Mantra

       The bija mantra of anhata is yam.  


       The animal which is the vehicle of anahata is a black antelope symbol of alertness and mercy.  An antelope is also noted for its fleetness.  

       In many systems anahata is commonly represented by a lake with a tree growing in its centre, or by a blue lotus on the surface of a huge lake.

Anahata Shuddhi

       Sit in a comfortable cross-legged posture with the spine erect and the eyes closed.  Take your awareness to the centre of the chest and witness its expansion and contraction with each inhalation and exhalation.

       As you inhale, feel the breath being pulled from anahata's location point in the spine through to anahata kshetram at the front of the body.  

       As you exhale, feel the breath being pushed inwards through the kshetram to the chakra in the spine.  Try to feel the exact location of the chakra and kshetram.  Continue for about 5 minutes.

       Then synchronize the mantra Om with the breathing process:  om with inhalation, Om with exhalation.

       Feel the breath and mantra pierce the chakra and kshetram with each inahalation and exhalation.

       Continue in this way for about 10 minutes.

Anahata Dhyana

       Focus your  awareness  at anahata chakra.  Now breathe in deeply.  As you exhale, chant the mantra yam continuously and rhythmically until exhalation is complete.  Chant yam-yam-yam-yam and feel the vibrations resonating in the heart.  Practise 13 rounds.


       Now try to imagine an antelope.  A black antelope, very swift and alert.  Antelope... a symbol of gentleness, certainty and fleetness.

       Now flash to a six pointed star..a smoky coloured star with six points.  A star...formed from two interlaced triangles.  A triangle pointing upwards...symbol of Shiva highest consciousness.  An inverted triangle...symbol of Shakti, the creative force.  See these two triangles interlaced...a star... Shiva and Shakti in union.

       Awareness of an infinite darkness in chidakasha..  The darkness of night... Amidst the darkness there is a feeble light...the light of a candle.  Concentrate on the light of this flickering candle.

       Now imagine you are walking through a garden...a large garden...a very beautiful...many trees...many flowers.  A very colorful garden...very soft grass beneath your feet...a gentle breeze caresses your skin...  In the centre of the garden is a large lake...a large lake of still, clear water.  In the middle of the lake is a is growing out from the water.  Concentrate on this tree and make a resolve.  Make a positive resolve and repeat it 3 times.

       Visualize the lake once again.  You will notice a blue lotus... a blue lotus with blue petals going around and around...spinning lotus...whirling vortex of primal energy.  See yourself being drawn into this spinning whirlpool of energy.  Merge into it and feel its vibration energy pulsating through your body.  When the vision fades, become aware of your natural breath.  Now become fully aware of your physical body and its surroundings.

      Chant om  3 times, then slowly open your eyes.

Source: Excerpts from the book on "Sure ways to Self-realization" by Swami Satyananda Saraswati.