Kriya Yoga: synthesis of a personal experience

Author: Ennio Nimis

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Contents Synopsis

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PART I HISTORY OF MY PASSION FOR KRIYA YOGA 1. Yoga Self-Taught 2. I Learn Kriya Yoga 3. The Breathless State 4. In Search of the Original Kriya 5. A Clean Mystical Path PART II SHARING THE KRIYA YOGA TECHNIQUES 6. The Basic Techniques of Kriya Yoga 7. Further Information about the First Kriya 8. Higher Kriyas PART III GRADUAL LEARNING OF KRIYA YOGA 9. Preliminary Remarks on the Potential Dangers of Meditation and Kriya 10. Building the Best Foundation for the Kriya Yoga Path 11. A Turning point: the Breathless State 12. Kriya of Descent Appendix 1: Remarks upon Kriya Yoga as Taught by the Organizations Appendix 2: Different Types of Researchers Glossary Bibliography 153 165 180 188 198 213 219 235 88 104 127 6 17 32 48 76



PART I: HISTORY OF MY PASSION FOR KRIYA YOGA The first part contains the story of the different phases of my spiritual search: self teaching of Yoga; Kriya Yoga received from an organization; Kriya Yoga received from traveling gurus; final decision of putting in a book all what I knew about Kriya Yoga techniques. Chapter 1 Yoga Self-Taught My spiritual search began early in my life, after I bought an introductory book on classical Yoga. I considered Yoga a discipline capable to produce an internal change in my personality. I began with an exercise, to be done in Savasana, where the thinking process was disciplined to create a state of "mental void". I decided also to extend the mechanism of this technique to my student life in order to become acquainted with thinking in a disciplined way, sparing my energies. Stunned about how the habits of our social life imply a constant waste of psychic energy, I began avoiding any useless distraction. My ego reacted significantly. I decided to reinforce my discipline through the art of Pranayama. The first result was the experience of a vast joy springing from the fundamentals of my being, not provoked by any external cause. After a couple of day characterized by fear and anguish, I experienced what Yoga books call the "awakening of Kundalini energy." Chapter 2 I Learn Kriya Yoga Enthusiast of Pranayama, I decided to devote my life to perfect it. I became to know of the existence of Kriya Yoga: a four-phased Pranayama path taught in our age by the great Lahiri Mahasaya. I would have done whatever to learn it immediately but this clashed with the rules of the organization spreading it in the West: it was necessary to follow a correspondence course. Meekly, I accepted to put aside my already consolidated practice and abide only by their written teachings. A year and a half later, I received the First Kriya set of techniques. A daily renowned problem was how to conceive a personal Kriya routine and draw the best from it. Chapter 3 The Breathless State The problem with the routine became critic when I learned the so called Higher Kriyas. In my understanding, they were not completely explained. Later, when one of the organization's representatives refused to clarify my doubts, reluctantly, I decided to address my search toward other sources. I had no results in this endeavor but, thanks to some readings, the practice of Japa entered my life and, with it, the experience of the breathless state. Chapter 4 In Search of the Original Kriya In order to learn the so-called "original Kriya", I followed three different traveling teachers. Among many not very important details there was also something valuable: the importance of listening during Kriya Pranayama to the internal sounds, the frenulum-stretching technique (Talabya Kriya) leading one to mastery of Kechari Mudra, the Tribhangamurari movement and the concept of Incremental Routine.


Chapter 5 A Clean Mystical Path After the break off with my third teacher, I decided to have no more teachers. An uncertain idea came also to put all my discoveries in a book. Before actuating this project, I lived a tormented period in which I tackled the deep conditioning I had received from my first Kriya organization: the necessity of receiving the techniques from an "authorized" Guru and keeping any technical detail of Kriya secret. Years went by with very long session of meditation outdoors, looking for inspiration from the Beauty of Nature. Only the mental clarity and stamina produced by the incremental routines helped me to erase all conditionings. I began the work of writing the book and posted it on the Web. PART II: SHARING THE KRIYA YOGA TECHNIQUES The second part is devoted to the description of the Kriya techniques. A theoretical vision of Kriya Yoga is also given. Chapter 6 The Basic Techniques of Kriya Yoga In this chapter I want to recreate the ideal explanation for a beginner. Eight techniques are considered components of the First Kriya -- Talabya Kriya, Om Japa, Kriya Pranayama, Navi Kriya, mental Pranayama, Maha Mudra, Pranayama with short breath and Yoni Mudra. Chapter 7 Further Information about the First Kriya Understanding Kriya Yoga is the theme of this chapter. After a theoretical digression, each technique is seen as a tool to consciously cooperate with the work of eliminating the four obstructions: tongue, heart, navel and coccyx. How to build a working routine is the second main theme of this chapter. Some variations of the basic First Kriya techniques are now given. Chapter 8 Higher Kriyas There are different ways of defining the Higher Kriyas. Here the technique of Second Kriya includes: 1. Omkar Kriya; 2. Thokar Kriya (basic form of it) and 3. Thokar Kriya (advanced level of it). The Third Kriya includes: 1. Mental Omkar Kriya and 2.Micro Thokar. Fourth Kriya includes: 1. The procedure to achieve the state of Antar (internal) Kevala Kumbhaka and 2. Omkar Gayatri Kriya. Appendix: the important teaching of Tribhangamurari is here considered among other minor variations of Thokar. PART III: GRADUAL LEARNING OF KRIYA YOGA The third part dwells with the practical aspects of teaching Kriya Yoga. The main theme is how to assist students to coordinate and harness their efforts in a meaningful way, making them able to withstand the transformative process that leads to the mastery of the different steps of Kriya Yoga. Chapter 9 Preliminary Remarks on the Potential Dangers of Meditation and Kriya Kriyabans should be informed about the alleged or real "dangers of premature Kundalini awakening". Surely there are some norms to follow in order to avoid any problem with the practice of Kriya. 4

Chapter 11 A Turning Point: the Breathless State The breathless state is a decisive result marking a turning point in one's life: it is the true Initiation. The intriguing effects of this practice are here taken into account. some practical examples clarify how to utilize the formidable instrument of the Incremental Routine. Thokar and mental Pranayama) the practice of Japa during the day. Chapter 12 Kriya of Descent The discussion is about what could be considered the final improvement of Kriya Pranayama. one should intensify the first part of the routine asking if it that were the case of changing the Mantra chosen for Japa.Chapter 10 Building the Best Foundation for the Kriya Yoga Path After considering how to introduce the First Kriya in a gradual way. If this "recipe" does not blossom into the breathless state. It is achieved by adding to a correct routine containing the essence of Kriya (Kriya Pranayama. A parallel is given with the Macrocosmic orbit of internal taoist Alchemy. 5 .

I wasted a lot of time on worthless books and stacks of specialized esoteric magazines with tantalizing titles and impossible chimeras designed essentially to impress. beyond the point of no return. I continued these readings until I was about 11." I was deeply allured by his words: what internal change was he talking about? Surely my friend didn't mean the attainment of a particular state of relaxation or concentration or how to integrate the oriental vision of existence with our lifestyle. I saw the word "Yoga" for the first time in a postal catalog of esoteric books among my father's correspondence. He was surely referring to obtaining some intense experiences that left a psychological mark. Perhaps. I felt I had traveled through an indistinct chaos.. I borrowed esoteric books from my parents' friends and I loved those books... But my friend would not lend me the book. that had slowly consolidated during my childhood and early adolescence.not to read or to fantasize about.K. During this period. and then finally the autobiography of an Indian saint where I found the term Kriya Yoga. In primary school.. However. I was entranced and inexplicably spellbound by the person pictured on the cover sitting in the "lotus position. and added: "these exercises can change a person inside. I turned a deaf ear to any persuasive advice to dedicate myself to more formative readings. the most precious secrets were hidden in other books I had not been fortunate enough to find." However... and where it was impossible to distinguish in advance between fact and fiction. When I was 15 and in high school. I don't remember the title of the first book. In the end. I was proud to be able to read and understand it. But first things first. unlike my peers.S.PART I: HISTORY OF MY PASSION FOR KRIYA YOGA CHAPTER 1 YOGA SELF-TAUGHT My spiritual search began at age 15 after I bought an introductory book on classical Yoga. I had no doubts that Pranayama was something I had to learn as soon as possible. Books of B. the esoteric flame was rekindled for a while in a particular way: Yoga as a discipline to practice -. A friend told me he had a detailed textbook containing different Pranayama techniques.. when I was perhaps 10 or 11. a few days later at the train station newsstand. I couldn't persuade my father to buy the book for me. Knowing the book was considered unsuitable for my age. Iyengar followed. I came into contact with the main themes of occidental esotericism with short digressions into phenomena like hypnosis and spiritualism. I remember the first one I read from end to end was on occultism. My interest in Yoga had been fueled by a certain expectation of the effectiveness of the oriental forms of meditation. I spotted Yoga in 20 lessons and bought it forthwith and read it in its 6 .

. I was attracted by the over-exaggerated promise that by stopping all mental functions -. There was an entire chapter devoted to the "Corpse Pose" (Savasana). strengthening the diaphragm or creating some peculiar conditions of blood oxygenation. I was frustrated about the lack of information about Pranayama -. Even concepts like Reincarnation. gave a brief note on the best mental attitude for practicing it and how each exercise stimulated certain physiological functions (important endocrine glands. It was taken for granted that these positions were not to be seen as simple "stretching work-outs". nothing else. He explained the purpose of the exercise was to put to rest the mental faculties in order to recharge the whole psychophysical system with fresh energy. Unfortunately. The satisfaction I felt at the end of a session spoke for their effectiveness. I devoted myself to mastering yoga positions or moving the abdominal muscles with the Nauli technique -. at least for me. the last one to be practiced in the daily Asana routine. the understanding of which in the future would become so important in my life. Prakriti. I wasn't very good anyway in sports despite being well-conditioned by long walks. For me. and Maya.without falling into a state of sleep the amazement of my teacher who inquired about the secret of obtaining such interesting effects. diaphragm. I regret not having the book anymore. one could obtain within an hour.). It was clear. It was no difficult task to guess that the ancient art of Pranayama was not intended to train the chest muscles. I began trying out yoga postures (Asanas) in a corner of our school gymnasium during physical education classes after the teacher gave me permission to work out on my own after the preliminary group warm-up exercises.I knew it could bring about a transformation in my personality. but to act on the energy present in our psychophysical system. that such energy was related to disharmony and conflicts inside our disposition. being able to do something significant without having to move very far and without the inherent risks of school sports attracted me.. Moreover. hidden in a tangle of Sanskrit terms. it seemed more an exercise of mental control. the philosophical introduction did not stir up anything spiritual. remained unfathomable. but I will describe the exercise based on what I remember: 7 .). the equivalent of five hours sleep. Dharma.and remaining for some time in a state of pure awareness. etc. So. Karma. that Yoga text was not a mediocre one: it explained the name of each posture (Asana). The instructions were structured with great care in typical western style but the author did not lose his focus in useless philosophical embellishments. Pranayama was only hinted at by explaining how to do a complete breath -. Nevertheless. It was there just to give the reader the impression of serious authenticity. Purusha. The introduction to Yoga philosophy was neither impressive or thought provoking (Jiva. they were a means of providing a global stimulus to all the physical organs to increase their vitality. while my schoolmates would amuse themselves with team games.entirety.dilating the abdomen. My spiritual search had begun but I was not aware of it. Objectively speaking. That was clearly just an introduction. and upper chest during inhalation and contracting the same in reverse order for a calm exhalation.

even the thought itself of practicing a technique. there is no more effort and any remaining restless emotion subsides. When. The ability to continuously push away thoughts that knock at the door of your attention will become easier and almost automatic. in spite of the 40 minutes promised by the book." In my experience."Lie in the supine position with arms extended alongside the body and with eyes covered to keep the light out. All thoughts. without exception. I am not thinking of anything. After a few seconds however. You should never become annoyed about continuous new thoughts but picture them as objects and shift them aside.just touching. It would be more correct to affirm: "Only in the ability of obtaining the silence of thoughts. The focus of consciousness is absorbed in Kutastha. must be put aside.such as practicing immediately after a strong emotional incident -. the exercise works perfectly and after 40 minutes you get up well-rested and recharged with new fresh energy. return your awareness to the small spot between the eyebrows (Kutastha) which resembles a lake of peace. on some occasions -. Then. The technique inevitably ended in a peculiar way. ulterior chains of thought are prevented from coming out. At the end you know that you exist and that your existence is indestructible. therefore I am" is indefensible." Besides the dimensions of esoteric. After pushing a thought away. convert your concentration into a small needle which constantly touches the area between the eyebrows -. Like a luminous point duplicating itself an unlimited amount of times. visualize your thoughts including those with abstract qualities and push them away one by one as if an internal hand were moving them gently from the center of a mental screen toward its outer edge. to enter the state of mental void. The thought seeds manifesting as indefinite images quivering at the edge of awareness cannot disturb your mental rest. Whichever of the two methods you choose. 8 . Pure logical thinking cannot yield you that certitude. When the mental process is eased off into perfect silence. it remains unchanged for some minutes. thoughts are in essence ephemeral and instead of revealing the final truth. Thanks to this technique. lies the proof and the intimate certainty of existing. I am calm. The Cartesian deduction: "I think. oriental meditative practices. which became a daily habit.the mechanism does not seem to work. At a certain point. there was also the passion for poetry and literature accompanied by habit of daily seeking the contemplation of Beauty in Nature. mentally repeat -. in this way. the final state of relaxation lasted no more than 15 minutes and the exercise itself never more than 25-30 minutes altogether. and relax therein. pure awareness without content arises. After staying still for two or three minutes.I am relaxed. the state of deep calmness was interrupted by the thought that the exercise had not yet begun. my reaction was always a wince and a faster heartbeat. I realized once and for all the difference between "mind" and "awareness". they cloud it. the confidence that the exercise had been perfectly executed appeared. without worrying about shifting thoughts aside.

During a walk in the country." How could I remain indifferent? He was drawing incomparable music out of the depths of his being. remaining undisturbed by distractions. That was my first religious experience. I decided to use the technique of mental void while resting in the afternoon as well as to extend its dynamic to studying. create at times unreasonable fears that hinder the decisive action that life requires. sitting on a hill contemplating a far landscape basking in the warmth of the summer evening. I took out a book of poetry from the school library and began copying different short poems with naturalistic themes in my notebook. He wrote to a friend: "God is nearer to me than to others. He became my idol. I continued this exercise until I was studying humanities. and offering it to his brothers and to humanity. The daily rite of retiring to my room to listen to that music consolidated my consecration to the Ideal -. he reacted in a most honorable manner and carried on creating works he had already composed in his heart. What my heart craved was before me. which no adverse fate can overtake. I have always known him.Self inquiry. All my attention was focused on reasoning clearly. The more my rash emotionalism prompted me to take steps which proved to be destructive to my affective relationships. I understood that a happy chapter of my life was concluded and there would be no time for distractions -. when I experienced a strong sentimental tie whose fulfillment seemed impossible. and finding an effective method of study. it excessively fosters an optimistic imagination that unfortunately 9 . By reading them frequently I soon knew them all by heart. I majored in Mathematics at university and during the first months. and which will free him who understands it from the misery which afflicts others. perfect and untarnished neither by fears nor a sense of guilt. I developed a passion for classical music and studying Beethoven. The frenzied whirl of the thought process. On other occasions. I had molded the unshakeable conviction that when thought becomes an uncontrollable vice -. To further save my energy. I could intensify the pleasure I felt while contemplating the hilly surroundings beyond the outskirts of our village. that music rang out again in my memory. where he reveals his critical condition and states his decision with pacific and total resolution made him almost a hero and a saint in my eyes. accompanied by alternating moods and strong emotions.for many it is an utter addiction -. the more my desperate heart found refuge in its pure beauty. Despite the tragedy of his deafness at his creative peak.My interest in poetry began when I was 9. By recalling them. One bad habit I had to conquer was the tendency to day-dream and jump from one memory to another to extract moments of constitutes not only a waste of energy but is the primary cause of misery. The Heiligenstadt Testament. I planned to think in a disciplined way during my idle moments. As years in the high school were drawing to a close. I listened to Beethoven's Missa Solemnis. I approach Him without fear. Neither am I anxious about my music. The triumph of this frail human creature over a nonsensical fate had a tremendous impact on me. Each day for the first 3 months after high school graduation.

during a short afternoon walk. wrapped and unexpectedly dignified by the idea of socialization. The music conveyed a sense of desolation which was sweet as if death meant drifting off into a pacific sleep. Bruno Walter. having sex. Certainly. But after breathing for some hours the limpid. One of these. They were my friends and I loved each one of them. and overindulging. I resolved to concentrate on my studies and passing my exams became my sole reason for living. I was convinced disciplined thought was the most valuable trait I could develop and that it would open the doors to fruitful achievements.O that would be too hard. A sentence from Beethoven's Heiligenstadt testament came spontaneously to mind as an invocation to retrieve the lofty dimension I enjoyed during my high school years: O Providence . At that moment. One day. I assumed they were completely governed by their instincts: eating.Never? No . The incident put me in a gloomy mood. I perceived that period of my life as a descent into an unfathomable night but I knew in order to shape my future the way I desired.O when.pushes the person toward wretched actions. My heart gave a lurch. I Will Die So I Can Live! An event illuminated my life: a friend introduced me to Gustav Mahler's Symphony No.shall I find it again in the temple of nature and of men? . The words of the contralto communicated a childlike innocent vision in a sorrowful voice of endless dignity: 10 . they would have kept on sipping the daily pleasure of dawdling until misfortune hit them. It was time to renounce it. To see the dawn of a "day of pure joy". was that of daily falling into nerve-wracking discussions with has been so long since real joy echoed in my heart . O Divine One . I saw how other habits were wasting my mental energy.grant me at least but one day of pure joy . they appeared to me like chickens cooped up in a narrow space. In the mirror of my introspection. mine was not an impossible sacrifice: theirs was not my world. Whatever tragedy happened to their mate. I saw them from afar sitting lazily and chatting in the usual bar. I read the information leaflet.O when . I abruptly avoided their company. I encountered a significant resistance. My decision filled me with euphoric enthusiasm. sparkling. it didn't concern them. yet seeing them together on that day. It was Mahler's intention to treat death as the inevitable end of all human enterprise. tough sacrifices were necessary. It was very sad and distressing. Mercilessly. partying. Each part of the symphony had a precise meaning which Mahler himself had explained in a letter to the conductor. celestial state of thought restraint.2 "Resurrection" and invited me to a live concert of this work. I would have to endure momentarily a dark emptiness: I would savor it without a lament and without being tempted to turn on a light for momentary solace.

give you. Mein Staub. before barren old age. superficial emotions. Iyengar's 11 . after a brief rest! Immortal life! Immortal life will He who called you. my dust. um zu leben! Aufersteh'n. um zu leben!" ("I will die so I can live!") resounded all day long in my mind like a thread around which my thought crystallized. but by no means did I want to spend the rest of my life staring at the wall of my silenced mind and waiting for something to happen. in love's fierce striving. I shall soar aloft to the light no eye has pierced! I will die so I can live! Rise again. will you. B. die ich mir errungen. The music conveyed the biblical suggestion of universal judgment. said Beethoven: so I too was prepared to act in a strong and decisive way. Will you. What I missed was the art of Pranayama -. ja aufersteh'n wirst du. to "die in myself"? Was it possible to cross the foggy curtain of thoughts. ja aufersteh'n Wirst du. in einem Nu! Was du geschlagen zu Gott wird es dich tragen! With wings I have gained. my heart. Amid the vegetation.S. Then Mahler's own verses were chanted: these ended with: Mit Flügeln. there was a beautiful red rose that filled my heart with its beauty. yes. "I will seize Fate by the throat". Would have I ever be able. Then the choir sang some verses from Klopstock's hymn: Aufersteh'n. I tried to penetrate its meaning by reading everything I could on it and listening to it entranced and in the quietude of my room. The song then dealt with the theme of eternal life. shall lead you to God! In the following days. zu dem kein Aug'gedrungen! Sterben werd'ich. After many integral and enthusiastic listening sessions. In heißem Liebesstreben.that Pranayama which I had dreamed so much about but had never actually practiced. sensations and instinct. Werd'ich entschweben Zum Licht. the words: "Sterben werde ich. It was like being in the countryside during a light rain.K. yes. rise again. rise again. O red rose! Man lies in direst need! Man lies in deepest pain! Oh how I would rather be in heaven. Nach kurzer Ruh'! Unsterblich Leben! Unsterblich Leben wird der dich rief dir geben! Rise again.O Röschen roth! Der Mensch liegt in größter Noth! Der Mensch liegt in größter Pein! Je lieber möcht ich im Himmel sein. in an instant! What you have earned yourself. mein Herz. But it was spring and a ray of sun pierced the clouds. and emerge in that pure Dimension I had yearned for for many years and what I felt was my sovereign good? There was no doubt I would have perfected my self imposed discipline to extremes.

I could verify Pranayama's potentiality acting on my psyche. Ujjayi. It had to be true! Pranayama appeared to me as the most perfect of all arts. to the point of "dying" in it. I focused with zeal on applying the instructions flawlessly and with a creative spirit.description in his The Illustrated Light on Yoga. 12 . The respiratory system suffers and the nervous system is adversely affected. The very foundation of a healthy body and a sound mind is shaken by a faulty practice of Pranayama." This sentence. the smooth flowing of the breath. when the skies were crystalline and as blue as they had ever been. The instrument was already with me and within me. particularly the hint at the danger of compromising our mental health. with no intrinsic limits. In the last part of the book there was a prudent warning: "Pneumatic tools can cut through the hardest rock. Bandha and final concentration in Kutastha) is given in chapter 10. with ferocious concentration. Day after day. which I had purchased a few weeks before. I felt my perception of things had changed. I would sit in the open air and contemplate the environs. 1 I practiced in the half-lotus position. If it provoked an authentic psychological earthquake. I searched for the most intense colors. What would have frightened others. encouraged me. some prudence was necessary: an intensive practice had to be reached gradually and each session had to be carried out with extreme care. To abide by it was "the decision" of my life. I couldn't understand how I had wasted so much time before taking on this commitment seriously.. the yogi uses his lungs as pneumatic tools. I would start with stretching exercises -. I concentrated keenly on the alternate feelings of coolness and warmth produced by the air on the fingers and on the palm of the right hand used to open and close the nostrils. as if there were no tomorrow. To devote myself to it. In Pranayama.and some simple Asanas when I had more time. The pressure. had awakened in me an unshakeable desire to practice it intensively. I did not have to spend money on a piano or a violin or a canvas and color. every detail was pleasant. The Pranayama referred to was Nadi Sodhana and Ujjayi with Bandha and Kumbhaka -. In a bushy ditch covered with ivy.such a practice would be a whole new experience because these exercises were not described in my first Yoga manual. I practiced morning and evening in an "absolute" way.. figuratively speaking. in the first sunny days after winter. Becoming aware of each peculiarity of the exercise helped me maintain a vigilant attention without becoming stressed. Sometimes. fascinated by them as if they were a material substance I could touch and consume. sitting on the edge of a pillow with my back straight. Yes. If they are not used properly. the sun shed its light 1 A detailed description of this routine (Nadi Sodhana. Faulty practice puts undue stress on the lungs and diaphragm. I was certain my old school friend had told the truth -."these exercises can change a person inside". they destroy both the tool and the person using it. then I was on the right track. turned on my immoderate will to experience all its power.

listening to classic music. This is the real meaning of Yoga . It was a book I had already seen some years before without buying it 2 The reader will understand why I am not mentioning the full name of P. Kundalini Experience After having bought the works of Ramakrishna. At that time. On a quiet afternoon walk among trees just before sunset. He abides in this reality and moves not thence.Y. Back home. One of these. to figure out his identity. Taimni). through its 13 . I would close my eyes and rely on an inner radiance.K. On one side there was the interest in esoteric matters which had guided my search toward Yoga discipline. But I never could have imagined that Pranayama had the power of multiplying the experience of the Sublime. radically separated one from another. still lingered in their spell-binding glory. Vivekananda. however. Actually. He has found the treasure above all others. I finally decided to buy also the autobiography of an Indian saint. now and then. I was deeply inspired. helping me not to spoil by a mess of thoughts the fragile miracle of a possible encounter with Beauty. He that has achieved it shall not be moved by the greatest sorrow. at a comment from one of the Upanishads [ancient Sanskrit sacred texts] that I had with me. I could never have imagined that the first dimension could possibly lead me toward the second! It was reasonable to hope that Pranayama could give me a permanent base of mental clarity. On the other side there was the aspiration toward the ideal world of Beauty which I tried to evoke through the study of literary work. nor could I have.. it was: I was that unbelievably delicate green light filtering through the leaves which was bearing witness to the spring that brought new life. 2. Yoga was conceived and proven efficacious in purifying and controlling the mind. There is nothing higher than this.upon flowers that a few weeks before were blooming during the cold and now. my internal life was still split between two interests which stand before my inner judgment like ideal dimensions. I did not even try to put down on paper the numerous "moments of grace" I experienced. Gopi Krishna and Patanjali's Yoga Sutras (a big volume with comments by I. .. There are many schools of Yoga spreading his teachings according to a ‘specific legitimacy'.it is not difficult.Y. Was my rational mind able to grasp the incommensurable implication of the statement? Yes. the Bhagavad Gita says: "(The yogi) knows the joy eternal beyond the pale of the senses which his reason cannot grasp. heedless of the mildest days.a deliverance from contact with pain and sorrow". I quickly glanced. My only wish was to go further and further into this new inner source of understanding and enlightenment. whom I will indicate by P. I often repeated this sentence to my friends and liked to repeat it inside me because at that very instant I was holding onto that joy. One particular sentence awakened an instantaneous realization: "Thou art that"! I closed the book and repeated the words as if in a trance. rousing them almost from nothing. Beauty was now vibrating inside me.

immersed in the reading of P. Normally. 3 The spiritual world appeared to me as a representatives. According to his description. very strong and I would not be able to stop it in any way. an intense fear of something unknown to me which was threatening my existence. psychic problems as well.even though I did not know what. Here the author described the splendid awakening experience he had following an intense practice of concentration on the seventh Chakra. whereas – because his body was probably unprepared – he later met serious physical and.'s autobiography. I had certainly never experienced such a terror. my reaction was rather strange. The thought had flashed upon my mind that a deeper event was going to happen soon. I made up my mind to let things happen unimpeded and go ahead with the reading.Y. Now the anxiety was of a different quality: I perceived something was approaching which was alien to the common experience. It was as if my memory had an inexplicable familiarity with it and my instinct knew its inescapable power. but the point is that it frightened me a lot. I felt the urgency of doing something . The experience was insignificant in itself. but they won't even appreciate their beloved Teacher's name to be mixed into discussions about Kriya on the Internet. I had a shiver similar to an electric current that spread itself throughout my whole body. made me realize that not only won't they tolerate the smallest of the Copyright violations. This situation provided a fertile ground for the coming of an event which was radically different than what I had experienced before. in the past. The reason is that. The worst thoughts hung over me without a clear reason. The premises happened when one night. My hope now was that I would be able to find useful information such as the addresses of some good schools of Yoga. It was a kind of "intimate" and spiritual experience. unable to think. skimming through its pages. Nonetheless. maybe the totality of that entity I call "myself". my restlessness turned into anxiety. some people used His name to mislead the search of a high number of practitioners who were trying to receive His original teachings. A part of me. without any pretension to give an objective account of it.since. I had observed that it didn't contain practical instructions. in moments of danger I would remain paralyzed. as a reflex. So strong was that energy to force him in bed and to prevent the accomplishment of the normal 3 14 . Moreover. since I have listened to the description of similar events from the lips of many researchers I have decided to share it. my desire is to inform the reader that in the following pages I will only summarily linger upon my understanding of His legacy. that it was going to be strong. Then it became fear. seemed at the point of melting away. The anguish increased. I set myself in the position of meditation and waited. Minutes passed by and I was not able to continue reading. I was sure I was close to madness – or death. Reading this autobiography enthralled me and originated a strong aspiration toward the mystical path: in certain moments. Knowing my own temperament. I found myself almost burning from an internal fever. inside of his body energy was put in constant motion from the base of the backbone toward the brain. An interested reader should not renounce the privilege of turning to the original texts! In those days I had finished reading Gopi Krishna's Kundalini: Path to Higher Consciousness.

the two pivotal facts that today stir the most intense emotions of my life . almost crushed by a feeling of desperation. He literally felt as if he was burned by an inner fire. choked. I was absolutely convinced that a mental illness was tearing my inner self to pieces. I was scared the people around me might not understand. As far as I am concerned. I felt guilty and ashamed for hurting through harsh words a friend who had been involved in a part of my search. 15 . he had shunned any practice. I was afraid to have come to the threshold of the same experience but. Strange as it may seem. In this way. I succeeded in hiding my anguish. the fear diminished and I finally felt safe. I had addressed him with a tone far from being affectionate. calmly and detachedly. Why not try. It was night and there was nobody to whom I could communicate my panic! At the center of the yard I was burdened.sorrowful and horrible nightmare. able to annihilate and destroy whoever would imprudently approach it. I went out to try and amuse myself joining other people. Because of my great passion for classical music. I had a whole day before me. I would have done anything to tell him how sorry I was to have brutally violated his right to live the way that was best to him. after half an hour. I felt sorry that I had thrown unjustified cruelty at him without really knowing what was in his mind and soul. Something had changed anyway. Weeks later.conveyed to me a feeling of horror! The sunlight poured into the room through the chinks in the shutters. then? It was Beethoven's Concert for Violin and Orchestra I listened to with a pair of headphones in my room that soothed my soul and. out to the open air. my mind was totally worn out. Like so many others. I thought he preferred to protect his mental health rather than become unstable or insane through practices he was not sure about. eased my sleep. on the contrary. After two days. since I actually did not succeed in thinking about Yoga: I went around that idea! One week later I began. which then started to thunder inside of my head. envying all those people who had never practiced Yoga. which became a stout experience of internal realization. since I did not live in India. The afternoon was spent cracking all sorts of jokes and behaving like the people I had always considered lazy and dull. I hoped that listening to it might yield the positive effect of protecting me from the anguish and help me to get back to my usual mood.that there is a Divine Intelligence at the very basis of everything existing and that man can practice a definite discipline in order to attune to it . The experience would have been terrible! Nobody could make sure that. which he could not put out. seemed the dearest and healthiest reality. I decided to take a break and put off the fatal moment as long as possible. he intuitively discovered the way to check out the phenomenon. Equipped with a juvenile boldness. to ponder on the meaning bodily functions. I was afraid I might not be able to get back to that condition anymore. The first day went by. I met some friends but did not talk about what I was experiencing. Ordinary life. forgot lofty readings and engaged in working and enjoying life. my experience would be channeled toward a positive conclusion. I stood up and left the room. like for Gopi Krishna. The following morning I woke up with the same fear in my mind. The reason was that I had opened a door looking out on a reality far more immense than I had ever foreseen.

A. even if this process implied the loss of my wholesomeness. Frossard suggests that we should imagine an "upsidedown avalanche" which begins strengthening at the foot of the mountain and climbs up pushed by an increasing power. It was as if an electric wind was blowing in the external part of my body. In his God Exists: I Have Met Him. My memory of that moment was condensed into one expression. My body was so tired that I could not move. in the following description. I understood the nature of my reaction to that episode: I had cowardly run away from the experience I had pursued for such a long time! In the depth of my soul my dignity led me to continue with my search exactly from the point where I had quit. I was relaxed in Savasana when I had a pleasant sensation. even if my mind imparted the order to move. uninterrupted sleep. The following day. The strangest thing is that in the very instant I had it. runs downhill. Its peak definitely held out only a few seconds. I was ready to accept all that was to happen and let things follow their course. and so far unknown. the experience was like being struck by a bolt.of what had happened. I did not even have the chance to find out which parts of me were still there and which ones had disappeared. first slowly. When it ended. To me. I began the practice of Pranayama again. I turned on my side and fell into a calm. "a clear and euphoric certainty of existing. suddenly. propagating itself quickly and with a wavy motion from my feet up to my head. I was not sure that "something" had really happened. (Many readers will recognize. like an unlimited ocean of awareness and bliss". Frossard tries to give an idea of his spiritual experience. I found it familiar. comparable to an enormous strength filling into the backbone and quickly climbing up to the brain. then faster and violently at the same time. The perception of an intense brightness accompanied everything. I experienced something awfully beautiful. I do not know how long this experience lasted. I was not able to really understand what had happened to me. it leaps up toward the sky. Leaning against the trunk of a tree. I had no fear.) It was night. their similar experience. For that purpose he creates the concept of the "inverse avalanche". sense of bliss. My composure was serene. That experience was characterized by an indescribable. rather. An avalanche collapses. during a walk. Then. when I woke up. I did not think of it. My rational mind tried to grasp and gain confidence over an experience which was beyond it – an impossible task. for many minutes I was literally enthralled by the reverberation of this memory upon my soul. 16 . It only came up some hours later. A few days went by without detecting any form of fear. All the things I had thought about Yoga until then did not have any importance at all. as intensely as before. The electric wind was replaced by another feeling. then.

they could no longer put up with anyone.. How could a young man undertake such a perilous venture without the guide of a trained psychologist? Anyway. vigilance. it appeared again during the following months. In my dreamer heart. their way of behaving appeared to me imbued with the constant obsessive effort of appearing always cheerful and optimistic.began to be revealed. In my youthful boldness. Reflections by Jung. A certainty of eternity. Dreams. One who knows Jungian thought and has a minimum experience with depth psychology. As I became familiar with Jung.G. Jaffé. My expectations of professional opportunity changed forever. Undertaking the practice of Pranayama was like planting a seed in the desolation of my soul: it grew into a limitless joy and matchless internal freedom. I believed that Pranayama was precious to anyone and could help my friends to live in a better way. et al. They disappeared for some time and. and Memories.. as if a new area of my brain had been stirred to a full awakening. Whatever profession I was looking at. an elated condition stretching out way over the limits of my awareness . a couple of minutes after I laid down exhausted on my bed. I met with some difficulties.a sort of memory hiding in the recesses of my awareness . strange indeed. I assumed it could potentially guide me along the "Individuation Process" as described by Jung. would find the idea insane. was counterbalanced by periods in which they gave the impression of "imploding". granting myself short resting breaks (without falling asleep).CHAPTER 2 I LEARN KRIYA YOGA The simple exercise of enjoying the controlled flow of my breath changed the course of my life. As for the Kundalini experience. it had to leave me all the time necessary for my meditative practices. The great amount of energy they squandered in this debilitating hysteria. longing for more freedom in old age. I believed the pure awareness I had learned to experience from my daily exercise and from my Kundalini experience was the Self hypothesized by Jung. As regards social behavior.. was faced with radical refusal. This discipline implied much more than easing disharmonies and conflicts inside my disposition or refining the capacity for aesthetic enjoyment. reading enthusiastically Jolande Jacobi's The Psychology of C. I fancied I would face the archetypes of the Collective Unconscious. Actually. Jung. When I devoted myself to study late. I felt compelled to live without ever betraying it and to choose a profession that would give me the opportunity of deepening this realization each day. It took care of my hopes and brought them forward. The prospect of a life devoted primarily to work. I tried to analyze and unmask what I considered a 17 . and indomitable will to perfect my performance of Pranayama. Since I had read that Pranayama would initiate a cleansing process of the subconscious. it would invariably take place. the idea infused me with a further injection of enthusiasm.

The author highlighted the evolutionary value of such an exercise. the only inappropriate thing to him was my excessive enthusiasm. He explained that if we compare the human spinal column to a ferromagnetic substance constituted. According to this belief. without necessarily having to accept any creeds. What I could guess was that the Pranayama taught in Kriya Yoga consisted in a way of slow and deep breathing. This is because such an action is never in vain and in actual life they get back to 18 . not a religious engagement. a "Hippie". not just including a man's spiritual side but his physical and mental sides too. the action of Pranayama is akin to this process of magnetization. They replied that I was unable to respect and show human sympathy toward others. as taught by physics. it was obvious that the Kriya four-stage system would make them greater and greater! I went on reading the books by P. it is worthwhile to understand and speak freely of it. sooner or later.Y. P. It is further explained that those people who are instinctively attracted by methods of spiritual development such as Kriya.I considered it an art in continuous refinement. He would not excite me when he spoke on a purely devotional tone. with unequaled will and an unexpected practical spirit. This generated a violent reaction. This sparked my curiosity. He wrote that this technique had to be mastered through four levels. However. I kept following my way. which was first taught by Lahiri Mahasaya. then. Only one friend. showed me some empathy. have already practiced something similar in a "precedent incarnation". All the other people kept revolting against me rather bitterly. since the concept of Karma lies at the basis of Indian thought. in his autobiography hints at Kriya Yoga. making it possible for me to get at some aspects of the subtle art of Kriya -. By uniformly redirecting all the "subtle" parts of our spinal cord's physical and astral essence. appeared to them as the pinnacle of egoism. I was amazed by his personality. Somehow the inner energy was made to rotate around the Chakras. The essence of Yoga meditation which I went on extolling unflinchingly.Y. of elementary magnets that turn toward the same direction when they are overlapped by a magnetic field. Sometimes I felt so disoriented.. I had to admit that I didn't succeed in talking with a genuine sense of respect and love. a kind of Pranayama. Of course Kriya is a practice with which one can experiment. Pranayama burns out the effects of the "bad seeds" just before they manifest in our lives.farce. We allude to Karma whenever we stick to the common belief that a person inherits a baggage of latent tendencies from his previous lives and that. However. but it did whenever he assumed a more technical one. and the idea of improving it through different steps sounded amazingly wondrous: if the breathing exercises I had already practiced had given me such incomparable results. Guilt-ridden. these tendencies are to come out in actual life. Lahiri Mahasaya was depicted as the incarnation of Yoga: surely there must have been something unique in his "way"! I loved Pranayama. I convinced myself that I was actually taking advantage of my friend's admissions and stories to just find confirmation of my theories. while the awareness was focused on the spine. determined to improve the art of breathing. the Kriya Pranayama burns the so-called "bad seeds" of Karma.

One stated by P. The idea came to seek only the essential information in the esoteric books rather than in the classic books on Yoga – like Patanjali's Yoga Sutra. At least. I came to know. My compelling problem was whether I had to leave or not for India to look for a teacher who would give me all the clarifications about the Kriya practice. now I knew what to search for: a type of Pranayama in which the energy had to be visualized rotating. Since my first visit. that he had written a whole set of lessons on Kriya. At that time. 4 Meanwhile. If this had to be . Those people who lived beyond the Iron Curtain (the nearby Yugoslavia for example) could not receive such material. I kept on skimming through those which illustrated practical exercises with clarity. this was. and that these could be received by correspondence. Before purchasing a book I made sure it hinted at the possibility of channeling the energy along certain internal passages. I decided to improve the exercises I had already practiced. the secret to wake the mysterious energy! Some notes warned not to exaggerate with the exactly where.a universal process. regardless of what language in which they were written. using all the books I could find about Yoga. the Hatha Yoga Pradipika and similar books. It was a variation of Nadi Sodhana. some drawings sketching out the profile of a person and different circuits of energy all the way throughout the body. after four months. I had been very lucky. I was attracted by the entry: Breathing exercise for the awakening of Kundalini. with my great amazement. in a remote past. while.Y. This was to be avoided by all means. I received the first lesson. it was very well furnished. around the Chakras. a trip to India. I had good chances of tracing it through other sources. planning to get through my university studies quickly. while reading the index of a text which was in three volumes. I quickly applied for this course. they quit it. at least for some years. This was definitely not P. 4 I can still consider myself as fortunate. while again reading a text of P. My imagination played freely and my fervor grew. I turned down those texts which dealt only with philosophical topics. I vaguely remembered having seen. in some way. in a book about occultism.'s Kriya because. because of the risk of a premature Kundalini awakening. according to several clues. I excluded a journey to India for the near future. Kriya was not to be done through the alternate-nostril breathing. I came to know that the correspondence course had to be continued for at least one year before applying for the Kriya lessons.Y. The written material traveled by ship and the delay times were enormous. according to the authors. There laid something dormant in the corner of my memory which became alive again.Y.. probably because it had once been the Theosophical Society's reference bookstore. creating thus the prerequisite for awakening the Kundalini. . in ecstasy and not concerned by time. I wondered if the four levels of Kriya consisted of developing a deeper and deeper process of concentration on the spinal cord. This would have saved me. When. 19 . I started going to a used books store. introducing the esoteric thought of the Rosicrucian Brotherhood. including particular areas in the brain.

scattered notes from old course on hypnosis etc. I completely forgot about the other material. the owner was very nice to me and I almost felt obliged (considering the cheap price and the perfect conditions of those second-hand books) to buy at least a book per each visit. I would undoubtedly decipher all of it at home. The smirk of satisfaction I wore before the storekeeper. just as in the "Microcosmic Orbit" technique which is described in the Taoist Internal Alchemy texts . as if I had found a treasure of unfathomable value.Y. but I immediately realized the extraordinary importance of that technique. There was also the description of two particular sounds that the air originated in the throat. Spiesberger. During a deep inhalation. the air was to be imagined streaming along it from its base all the way up to the area between the eyebrows. the subtle coverings of energy wrapping our body. In another book. exhaling. was not as close to Lahiri Mahasaya's Kriya as to the version of Kriya Pranayama that P. inviting me to rummage in a messy heap of papers within a carton box. But sometimes I was very disappointed.more or less the same exercise. along the same route. Among a consistent quantity of miscellaneous material (complete series of the theosophical magazine issues. written in German by a certain K. 5 The description of this technique still amazes me.So. I went to the storekeeper holding a book in my hand. then. One day. not inside it.the mystic tradition of ancient China. He led me to the rear. but the difference was in visualizing/feeling the energy around the backbone. which tried to describe what cannot be seen and what cannot be experienced – such as the astral worlds. with the help of a good dictionary. while inhaling. after browsing a tiresome selection of books. the visualization of this as an empty tube was therefore prescribed and. that I would have studied Sanskrit or Chinese or any other language. I was curious about some rough drawings 5 I cannot help smiling when some half-hearted people insist that they are fond of Kriya. written in English. Walking home. I could not help skimming through the pages. I came upon a booklet. a lot of space was usually reserved to theories alien from concrete life. exhaling. the energy had to go up behind the spinal column. the air was to be imagined flowing up the spinal column. I went on haunting the bookstore. while deciding the price. I am convinced that their interests are superficial and rather emotive. so. if that had given me the chance to understand an essential text on Pranayama! 20 . which contained various esoteric techniques. in fact. among which included the Kundalini-breathing. I did not have much familiarity with the German language. he must have realized that I was not convinced about buying it. brought to the west. abandoning its habitual course. Such was my enthusiasm. definitely caused an increase in their price. yet they will not study some crucial texts in English because they are afraid to misinterpret them. the air had to go down back to the base. there was an exhaustive description of the Magic breath . he remembered something that might interest me. the author. Through the inhalation. it had to go down along the front part of the body. to the center of the head.).

I convinced myself that the Magic breath technique was Lahiri Mahasaya's Kriya. getting no positive results from the painstaking practice of his fraudulently-learned techniques. I incorporated it in my daily routine: it replaced the practice of Ujjayi Pranayama.even if it is totally fanciful with 21 . people experience problems. I was enthusiastic about this and quivered with cheerful anticipation to meet them. later on. I approached him. With great enthusiasm and a sort of euphoria. who were practicing Kriya and had formed a meditation group. my existence had been too happy for it to last that long. He emphasized that Kriya cannot be learned through books. showing a bitter smile of disappointment. I had the opportunity to hear plenty of times . too far away. standing on his house's doorstep. in an alternation of vicissitudes. taking for granted that I had received the teaching from the same organization he was a member of. wrote Sri Aurobindo: I would never have thought that those words could be applied to the consequences of that meeting of mine! With a sort of sour irony. That night I hardly succeeded in falling asleep. I could not have imagined what kind of a hard shock I was about to receive. When he figured out the way how I had learned the technique. "Too bright were our heavens. sincerely eager to meet a person with whom he could share the fire of his passion. limitations and deformations caused by the human mind. among other things. he was petrified. accompanied by the strength of visualization.of the Tibetan yogi Milarepa who. living not far from my place. if practiced constantly. too frail their ethereal stuff".illustrating techniques which were based on the movement of energy. Approaching this guy with a total sincerity. I told him how fascinated I was by the practice of Kriya! He asked me right away when I had been initiated in this that this time the results came out easily. during them.which. I read that the Magic breath was one of the most hidden secrets of all times: this filled me with higher enthusiasm. I was very satisfied although in the next few weeks I did not perceive any substantial changes in my mood and perceptions. Since the very first moment of our meeting. We all know how the human mind is more conditioned by an anecdote than by a logical inference! An anecdote . He welcomed me with visible enthusiasm. He began the tale . received the very same instructions kneeling at the feet of and with the benediction of his Guru . hoping. I had the first contact with them through the kriyaban (one who practices Kriya) who organized their meetings. it would produce a sort of internal substance allowing for the spiritual eye's vision. I Meet Other Kriyabans A letter from the organization informed me about the existence of other people. It was as if I had declared that I was the criminal mastermind behind one of the greatest crimes of all time. to receive more details about the Kriya technique. I would dare say that up to that moment. Life is made of short moments of calm and balance.

it is able to cloud people's judgment in order for them to easily accept conclusions that are absurd. during an arc of many years. he went on saying that a practice learned from any other source was "worth nothing.fictional purpose . The reader might remember that. I tried both ways but. while I was telling him. led me into his room and asked me to demonstrate for him my book-learned Kriya technique. I saw an inner satisfaction spreading all over his face. I changed my opinion because I witnessed an innumerable series of absurdities originating from this behest. and a possible effect might be "a dangerous illusion in which the ego remains trapped for a long time". dramatically.Y. I had always believed that it did not matter at all how a certain teaching was received. He was naturally intrigued by curiosity and. submitting a precise and solemn promise of "secrecy". stretched out in benediction".Y. There was only one way of learning Kriya: being initiated by a "Minister" authorized by the direction of his own organization! According to his words. with an enormous emotive impact. according to the books I had endowed with a sort of internal "brightness" that conditions a person's common anything but corrupted. Inflamed by an absolute faith. He. Their Guru was a special aid sent by God Himself. He felt relieved. by the expectation to verify a well-rooted prejudice that the technique. what a strange appeal. P.underlined with overflowing emphasis . The same thing was true for the people who belonged to that group. The idea began to enter my mind that it was fine to protect a precious lore from indiscreet eyes. having been initiated to Kriya through the legitimated channels. He smiled. 22 . was real and present in his life: was his Guru. what a mysterious fascination it exerted upon my being! Until then. intimately "reassured" when he saw me breathing through the nose instead of through the mouth (as he was told to) that therefore my practice was evidently wrong to him.spiritual Teacher .) Staring right into my eyes. had received the technique. no other person was allowed to teach that technique. I just did not know what to reply. or what book had been read or studied in order to learn it.a puzzling concept to me because it was attributed to a person that he had not known directly. received through illegitimate channels. and all the other devotees of his group. In his opinion. accompanied by the desire to go deeper and deeper into it. Secrecy! How odd this word sounded to me. since P. could not .because of a particular spiritual law . The logical consequence . he launched himself into a wide digression upon the value of the "Guru" .was that. it will not be effective in matters of spiritual purpose". I suppose. the way of transporting the energy while breathing could be done through a route around the Chakras or inside of the backbone. I thought that the only important thing was to practice it correctly. stimulating emotions and feelings. This story made me speechless. (Later. I had the evidence that it brought miserable repercussions into the lives of thousands of people. therefore such an event was "the greatest luck a human being can ever have". abandoning such form of aid or looking for a different spiritual path amounted to "a hateful rejection of the Divine hand. He asked me to explain more deeply what I was visualizing during my breathing and.

I was somewhat stunned by the tones to which our dialog was progressing. I tried to reassure him about the positive effects that I had gained from my practice. It was as if all of a sudden he had been invested with a sacred role: he promised that he would pray for me! For that day. Only then could I legitimately be one of the great Kriya family and practice safely under their surveillance. Each member paid part of the rental. therefore.wrote that it was correct to move the energy "around" the Chakras. giving him the chance of a second scolding. My attendance began in a period that I remember nostalgically. Acting the Part of a Devotee As a habit. from that moment I abandoned Pranayama entirely. describing the details of my vicissitudes. I could not imagine that P. a bizarre situation was taking place: I was describing for him what by all accounts was indeed the original Pranayama taught by Lahiri Mahasaya while he was sarcastically simpering. My practice was restricted to simply centering my attention between the eyebrows (Kutastha) -. Realizing he had given too much of his time to me. That clever guy had gotten straight into an obvious contradiction without even realizing it. he was saying that the results were too important to risk losing them by telling others. at least. my friend did not recognized his Kriya. Besides. this was the version I explained. hoping that they would accept me as a disciple. While I was talking. out of place. because in this way I would "lose them". The "secret" he was apparently bound to had not been broken by any of the authors of my esoteric books! Thus. I mainly settled on the first one. I told my friend that I would follow his advice. had decided to simplify the instructions and taught in the west the other variation with no mental singing of Om. listening to 23 .just as he suggested to me. much less should I display them. which was not totally unfair but. having read in another book that during Kriya Pranayama the practitioner was supposed to sing Om mentally in the Chakras. In order to re-establish the initial agreeability of our meeting. In effects. so that its fruition would not depend on the owner's whims and it was consecrated to an exclusively spiritual use. and a few seconds before he had underlined that they were of no value whatsoever. one hundred per cent sure that I was talking nonsense! Pretending to feel sorry for my consequent disappointment. he informed me in an official tone that my technique had "nothing to do with Kriya Pranayama"! Since my position was totally incompatible with his basic tenets. undoubtedly. a strange metamorphosis took place in his demeanor. he recommended for me to send a written account to the direction of the organization. He made clear that I should never look for any tangible effects in the practice of Kriya.Y. the group practicing Kriya would meet twice a week to practice the techniques together. I added this detail as well. My statement actually had the effect of worsening the whole matter. I had lost the "fight". The room devoted to meditation was bare but pleasant.

Indian songs translated and harmonized for westerners and. I tried on different occasions to discuss what had been 24 . could cover such a role.I had to admit that the reality was different! Some of them reacted to my enthusiasm with annoyance: they could not believe that I had no doubts or uncertainties with respect to the Kriya path. but a light and innocent use of some sense of humor. oddly and without deep reasons. they were not mean or insulting jokes. a distinct embarrassment in our behavior spoiled the pleasantry of our meetings. However. So one single topic was left: the beauty of our spiritual path and our great fortune in having discovered it! No wonder that. The reason was that those who directed the school from a distance. scraped the whole experience off their consciousness. we were not able to find a topic for our conversations which would be interesting and. an almost frightening boredom started to reign in the group. As a matter of course.much less .support to the practice of Yoga. since our conversations were strictly kept on well-defined tracks. I cannot say that people were depressed. Unfortunately. They considered my euphoria being typical of an immature beginner. At the end of each meditation we were required to depart in silence. the group underwent a great recycling process. it was not so easy to find what could be called a free spiritual seeker: many were emotionally charged "devotees" wearing blinders. after some meetings of mutual "exaltation". this also had to live up to the devotional attitude kept by many of the members and eventually succumbed to their cold attitude. rather they seemed divinely happy. above all. During our more than 20 minutes . It was not the right place for worldly gossips. once a month we had a "social" lunch. A particularly inspiring session of collective practice took place on Christmas Eve. My open temperament allowed me to become close to one person and establish a bond which later became true friendship. many members who had joined in with enthusiasm decided to quit after a few months and then. had requested us not to talk about other spiritual paths or deal with specific details about Kriya. it was enriched by devotional songs and it lasted many hours. Authorized people only. the only occasion we had to spend time among people with the same ideas and interests had to be an experience of great serenity and relaxation. Actually. scantly 15 minutes. unsuitable for a spiritual group discussion. As a last resort. Since many of us did not have their family approval and . some risked entering the realm of jokes. meditating together was a true joy! Everything seemed paradisiac to me. Unfortunately.often. respected the given rules. no one in our group could. even though little time was given to the practice . but when you tried to be agreeable you got a look and a hint of a smile that left you frozen for the rest of the day. It was a beautiful chance to spend some time talking together and enjoying each other's company. Even trying to do my best in order to convince myself that I was among individuals akin to me – in other words enthusiastic about Kriya . thus I began to know my new kriyaban friends more closely only during the monthly meetings. With a barely concealed impatience of receiving some elucidation about the technique of Kriya. at the same time. unable to show a single inch of true joviality.

) I went to an elderly lady who had corresponded with P. Yet I liked P. a burning fever. the second one concerns itself with the listening to internal (astral) sounds melting into the Om sound. the first in the morning and a total immersion in the second at night. By studying the correspondence course. No "courting" could extract from them even a crumb of information. let the cat out of the bag. himself. I could not understand the reason for which I had to wait for it for such a long time: my great anticipation turned. Each one repeated that he was "not authorized to give out any explanations": this rule was strictly respected. rather to foster the blossoming of my spiritual experiences. sincerity and long-time loyal discipleship. a devotee should not desire a technique with such intensity: that's neither good nor wise. only then would the combination of the two techniques come.Y. I waited and dreamed. I didn't receive these instructions at one time. who was not the Madonna. Still today I don't know what he meant. Sometimes I considered a particular thought of P. so appealing and stunning that I would write it down on a sheet of paper and hold it on my desk. would . I could experiment with the meaning and beauty of each one. she had been authorized to check or to explain these techniques. sometimes. It was easy for me to admire and cherish the figure of Krishna. I learned different ways of creating healthy habits and how to behave in order not to disturb. you will be disappointed". (I will further comment on these techniques in the third part of the book. Her temperament was very sweet and more inclined to understanding rather than to censorship. more difficult to become acquainted with that of the Divine Mother also.Y. In this way I had the unique and splendid opportunity to concentrate on the first technique for many weeks.the latter two months after the first one. What I was doing was to act a really pathetic part: that of the humble devotee. She helped me and a small group of persons to practice correctly these techniques and checked my performance of the so-called "Recharging Exercises" which I had 25 . So much I did that I estranged me from myself. I hoped that someone. into a fruitless anguish. An old kriyaban told me: "When you receive Kriya. I tried my utmost to embrace the school's peculiar Hindu-Christian religious vision. A kriyaban making fun of me with an unconcealed cruelty. I tried to be good. but a sweetening of the idea of the goddess Kali. The first one (called HongSo because of the employed Mantra) eases off the breath and the whole psychophysical system. but after an interval book-learned practice of it.Y. Thanks to her earnestness. my interest for Kriya became a real craving. Thus.'s writings. making some remark about it. While I was continuously receiving unasked lessons of devotion. told me: "They won't give you the Kriya at all.. I don't know how I didn't cry with desperation. imagining Him as the quintessence of every beauty. humility and loyalty. God is to be mostly found through devotion and surrender". Preliminary Techniques to Kriya I received also the two techniques Hong so and Om.

which was like an embrace of sweetness.Y. where it seems impossible that the sounds will manifest. 6 The lady's explanation was characterized by such a sacred flavor that it accompanied me for the following weeks. Then she reviewed the Hong So technique which all of us had already learned and practiced. it is also possible to be guided toward the experience of the "Son" the Divine awareness that is present inside the above-mentioned energetic vibration. I felt hopelessly extraneous to that reality: I had to recreate a giant piece of my entire 6 This technique does not belong to those included in the original Kriya Yoga. a proof of the vibration of energy sustaining the universe." It is a good preparation for Kriya since instead of putting the accent on "to do". One day.Y. discovered by the mystics long ago. I was in a state of deep relaxation. I remember nostalgically my time in that slightly illuminated room.the Divine awareness beyond every existing thing in the universe. It did not happen abruptly. while I was relaxing and enjoying life. This Om technique I was going to learn. Om is the "Amen" of the Bible . She explained that P. Thanks to it. At the end of one's spiritual journey. the "witness". the cause would be some subtle mistakes in the practice. the "Father" -. in spite of its apparent simplicity! She said that if the results had been disappointing. I decided to interrupt this state of grace. called Nada Yoga "the Yoga of the sound. It was a really ecstatic experience and it occurred so strangely that it enchanted me." 26 .already learned from the written lessons. I didn't realize that this seemingly innocuous and instinctive "betrayal" would make me unable to tune with the Omkar reality for a very long time. Foreseeing the thought rising in someone's mind. These were physical exercises similar to isometric stretches and were practiced standing.the "Holy Ghost". as if it were a drawback to being fully sociable. For the first time in my life I found that the concept of "devotion" had a meaning. helping me overcome the beginning of the practice. that sound reminded me of the humming of a mosquito. she concluded: "The technique contains all you need to come into contact with the Divine Essence". I learned the hard way that you should never detach yourself voluntarily from that contact. having just begun the exercises for ten minutes. She remained rather vague but. It had been plainly described in the books of classical Yoga. that lady went on clarifying that the Hong So technique was not easy at all. where the internal sounds perception happens without closing the ears. she dwelled on the Om technique.. encouraging us with a smile. I realized I could hear an inner sound. Listening to the Om internal sound meant touching Beauty itself. but I felt as if I had been hearing it for some minutes. After three weeks of zealous practice. then it became a bell. The strength of the concentration directed the Prana in all the parts of the body. It is not an invention by P. had tried to explain the teaching of the Trinity in a new way. where I confined myself like a hermit. I cannot imagine something similar making a person feel so fine. makes it possible to detect this vibration. a sound. Mostly. one can reach the highest reality. heard from a distance. one day. it teaches the attitude of "perceiving.

but also to a six-master chain. every day I hoped to receive the coveted material. From the first index page of the material. I was anxious to listen to the explanation of the technique that would have happened in a short time. whereas the proper complete technique would be sent within five weeks. I remember a lady wondering if P. who had just arrived from abroad. to consider the whole mission of Kriya diffusion as originated from Christ himself was a pleasant idea. even at the most extravagant weddings. Then the ceremony began. I had to find again my living spring of enthusiasm. Like one who has landed in another continent. an envelope arrived.definitely unable to give any confirmation. Recollections of the Kriya Initiation Ceremony Eventually. lining up with a solemn attitude and their hands joined in prayer. The introduction to the ceremony happened in a magnificent way: about thirty people wearing a sober uniform entered the room.Y. namely the one who would partially bear the burden of our Karma. walked meekly and bewildered behind them. for another month. On the other end. consequently. This story caused me no perplexity at all: perhaps I had no time to think about it.Y. like me. I would have to study just the usual nursery rhymes I already knew by heart. of this chain Lahiri Mahasaya was an intermediary link while P.had really accepted her as a "disciple" and. to be laden with her Karma. were ready to be initiated were about one hundred in number. It would have been really strange if no one had doubts about this. together with his benediction". Those who. A beautiful room had been rented for the ceremony at a very high price and embellished for the occasion with lots of flowers. I accepted without objections their demand of swearing everlasting devotion not only to the Guru P. now being a long-time resident in the astral world . I opened it with an expectation that I would not be able to describe: I remained deeply disappointed because it contained ulterior introduction material. The two teachers. it was high time that I came "to make an eternal pact with the Guru. After waiting for months. About four months passed by. the moment came to file the application form to receive the Kriya instructions by mail. was the so-called Gurupreceptor. I understood it was the first of a weekly series. Incredulous. such as I have never seen in my life. We had been assured that Christ was part of this chain because He had once appeared to Babaji (Lahiri Mahasaya's Guru) asking Him to send some emissaries to the West to spread the Kriya lore.Y. to be taught the Kriya techniques in the only legitimate way. I had to work to rediscover the motivations that lead me to the spiritual path. The Kriya technique embodied God's most effective blessing toward His 27 . . finally. It was explained to me that those people belonged to the local group whose leader was a stylist who had prepared the choreography of that triumphant entrance. It happened that in the meantime a Minister of that organization visited our country and I could take part in the ceremony of initiation.

Hong-so and Om techniques. Besides. the listening to the internal sounds began -.privileged creature. nobody was encouraged – even vaguely – to conduct an experiment and come to a conclusion by himself. it was written that the energy had to be rotated "around the Chakras. I would instinctively look for their advice as if it were given by perfect beings that could never be wrong. It was not what might be called a "sacrament" that I was submitting to. in order to safeguard a family tradition. Then. These problems could have been easily resolved if I had used common sense. I had some problems which I am going now to discuss. The explanation of the techniques Maha Mudra and Jyoti Mudra (they never used the more common term Yoni) concluded the technical instructions. which I had found a long time ago in my esoteric readings and which prescribes that the energetic current flows all the way inside the spinal column. which exclusively possessed an inner body with seven Chakras. three-part Kriya Yoga procedure. I was not disappointed. was what I always did. Then there would follow another 28 . The breathing was supposed to become more relaxed and create a good state of concentration. Problems with the Routine I spent beautiful years practicing daily. I found out that I already knew it: it was the Kundalini-breathing technique. The first exercise to be practiced was the observation of the breath (the Hong-So technique) and this had to last ten to fifteen minutes. morning and evening. in effect.'s writings. owing to the fact that in P. It was taken for granted that if the least amount of doubt on the correctness of a certain detail had arisen during the practice. Rather. which were the basis for my first glimpses of the mechanism of Kriya Pranayama. Each technique's detail was explained in such a way that it would not allow for the smallest variation and. My mind was in great expectation for something I had so strongly desired and for which I had seriously been preparing myself for months. I have already explained that I had not taken into serious consideration that procedure.this would require about the same time.they had already reached the highest level of spiritual realization. the received techniques (Recharging Exercises. the humans. in addition. The only "correct" action that was fair to do was to contact the management of the school. The mystic seven-step ladder of the Chakras was the real highway to salvation. a specific routine was warmly recommended. This. I believed they were "channels" through which the blessings of the Guru flowed. being taught the Kriya Pranayama. after putting the forearms on a support. I learned to interact with the "authorized" individuals only. I was quietly confident that . it was the crowning of a definitive choice! My heart was immensely happy at the thought of the inner joy that I would gain through the practice of Kriya. tell them the problem and receive further guidelines. the technique appeared perfect to me. along an elliptical circuit". Finally.Y. the fastest and safest way.even if they would not admit it out of humility .

interrupting it in order to practice the Maha Mudra and Pranayama. It was illogical. In my practical experience. Eventually. I went on without changing the prescribed routine. With the exception of one person (who harbored really strange ideas about the 29 . which would appease their conscience. I realized how hard it was for them to talk about such things. why should I interrupt that sublime attunement to regain it through another technique? Perhaps because Kriya Pranayama was a higher procedure? Higher? What on earth does that mean? It is complete nonsense! I forced myself into such absurdity for an extremely long period. while others were not able to understand what I was saying. she pretended to listen attentively to me. the two preliminary techniques did not receive the attention they deserved. the thought that I should soon interrupt it to start the Om technique brought about a disturbing feeling. the Kriya Pranayama began with rigorous respect to all the instructions. Such was the power of that insanity that in our group was called "loyalty". When I tried to discuss this problems with other kriyabans. one begins talking with him and suddenly goes away with the hope to meet. At that time. fed by man. Sometimes I noticed an enormous and unreasonable resistance toward such a discussion. she brutally declared she already had a Guru and did not feel the need of another one. I am embarrassed to confess that it lasted no less than three years. quite by chance. Her remark cut me deeply. while the time devoted to the final concentration was too short. There were those who were not satisfied with their practice but planned to try it again in the future (at that time they would postpone listening to my reasoning). the Kriya routine would be concluded with a full ten-minute concentration on the Kutastha. recognizing a friend with joyous surprise among a crowd. the goal I sought. to absorb the results of the whole endeavor. Apart from this. in the end. that friend again and get back to where the conversation had previously ended. Talking with a lady who was a friend of our family for many years. as if. The same happened with the procedure of the second technique.interruption because of the Maha Mudra. what sort of friendship can exist between two persons when one uses that mode of expression? To pass by such episodes one after the other confirmed the idea that not being encouraged to trust the limpidity of self observation. I must acknowledge that unfortunately I had become like one of those animals that. After Jyoti Mudra. During the Hong-So technique. many of my friends went on mechanically performing what many times had become an empty ritual. since it was not my intention to teach her anything: my purpose was to have a rational talk which could be inspiring for both. The technique of listening to Om was a complete "universe" in itself and led to the mystic experience: that is why its interruption was something worse than a simple disturbance. hampering my whole surrender to its beauty. setting back in a still and stiff position to restore the feeling of sacredness. tend to forget how to be self-sufficient. the idea of using my brain seemed to me an act of stupid arrogance. The sound of Om was the mystic experience itself. hoping for a hypothetical future evolution of an unclear situation.

Y. a common ground. He explained that in all great mystical traditions the strength of the great Teachers of the past. it broke my heart to remain months without seeing him. His supreme dream was always to create a friendly tie with that divine being. I tried to convince him that to slip into an uncritical personality cult. any scrap of spiritual aspiration.obtaining thus the resolution of a lifelong commitment. claiming that devotion was much more important. knowing the total loneliness in which he lived. was a cause of real conflict. to the point that it crossed my mind that he was mentally unstable). Often they referred to a concept that I could hardly link to the practice of Yoga: the paramount importance of loyalty toward P. but through the transmission of their "power". They called the solidity of their surrender to such ideal: "Bhakti" – devotion. Appendix.not because of consanguinity.. There were moments in which. their subtle vibration. The Predilection of an Old Friend I became acquainted with an elderly kriyaban. and his organization. I was witness to an inexorable process that brought him to the point of living only on the warm rays coming from the memory of a glance and a simple nod once received from the person who was head of the Kriya organization and the spiritual successor of P. together with others I had experienced in that school. whom he felt as the epitome of his ideal of perfection. these new kriyaban friends seemed to censor my excessive interest in techniques. But my companion seemed irremediably spellbound by the idea of "transmission of power". who began the Kriya path many years before. they tried with any external means (readings.) to extract from the depths of their psyche any trace of religious attitude.Y. as a non-stop chain..spiritual path. This fact. I could not conceive the idea of leaning passively upon the protection of a saint who solved all one's problems. much too different from their quietness. I always met him for short and transient afternoons. They impregnated it with the natural heart's affection for their Guru . worthy of the maximum respect and admiration. is still present in their descendants -. could constitutes the death of his spiritual adventure. While their effort in practicing the meditation techniques in a deep way was not remarkable. convocations.even if they had known him only from photos . I wonder what those people's opinion about my impatient attitude might have been. For various reasons this was inevitable. walking and quietly speaking.. In my sensibility. into the deification process of this however inspiring figure. devotional chanting. My approach to the spiritual path was really different from theirs and there was no hope of reaching a point of contact. We saw each other in the last years of his life. It was normal that he felt the highest respect for that human channel who was officially invested by the mission for transmitting their particular 30 . He was convinced that spiritual progress cannot happen except through receiving this "power". Looking back to those times.

I felt a giant wave of inexplicable nostalgia which was ready to overwhelm me. the belief that his supreme good depended on a human loving glance coming from the person he felt as divine! He had made the unfortunate mistake to believe that the eternal spiritual source in the center of his being would dry out when he was far from the blessings of the one person toward whom he had directed the warm aspiration of his heart. one day he vented all of his gloom. majestic. but so slow to be practically negligible. 31 . like a religious ritual which had to be performed scrupulously just to give proof of loyalty.he had practiced the techniques of meditation. Unfortunately. as if suspended around us. He had given his full approval to the idea that on this planet there were special people. "Self realized". Nevertheless. He was already dreaming of future incarnations in which he could practice with great engagement. To this he was sweetly resigned. I wonder if the intuition of the transforming power of Kriya was not strongly hindered or made even impossible by emphasizing through constant barrage of anecdotes the greatness of certain persons who are "impudently" saintly. in this life. How wretched it had been for my friend. the Kriya techniques were. Now that he lives no more. The problem was that perhaps this attainment had become more important than meditation. In a dimension of utter authenticity. he had no doubts that. and irreparably common people."benediction". was undeniable. he had certainly missed the "target". this axiom was the frame-work upon which he had been interweaving his thought. achieved through Kriya. Looking at how superficially -. Strange to he said -. the idea of an automatic evolution determined by iron mathematic laws remained in him as an instinctive reflex and he would continue to repeat it while addressing people inquiring about Kriya. perfect. but it remained curbed. for him. It was reasonable then that he had tried to achieve a place of importance in their heart. He expressed something that years before he would not have even dared to think: the presumed evolution of the individual.

then a second one. I reminded her that Lahiri Mahasaya's disciple. She had learned the Higher Kriyas years ago and only in written form. To be instructed in such a delicate mechanism was one of my dreams.) Subsequently. with astonishment.Y. that she could not bring forth a more engaging dedication. She became visibly nervous. Among the kriyabans in the meditation group. upset her. She said she had felt so unworthy that she had put them aside and. I know that. my eyes opened widely.CHAPTER 3 THE BREATHLESS STATE P. she had received the initiation in the socalled Higher Kriyas. In plain English.Y. wrote that the Second Kriya Yoga enables the yogi to leave his body consciously at my opinion. Unfortunately. there was a lady.Y. I was doubtful about how Kechari Mudra had to be obtained (P. She didn't seem to understand my question. She was unable to clarify my technical doubts. just as I did. (Since I knew she had spent much time talking with direct disciples of P. saying that the quotation clearly referred to the technique of Pranayama: one breath. I felt my legs give way.. I asked if she had received the Second Kriya. I could finally apply for receiving that instruction. after some time. crossed the bounds of decency. Her self-satisfied ignorance passed off for humbleness. accompanied the moment of his death with the practice of the Second Kriya.she had never had them checked by direct disciples of P. and this had to be. When I expressed my objection that her behavior seemed an exhibition of indifference toward the higher teachings taught by her 32 . that an aristocratic-looking lady revealed to me that. perhaps she knew less than me about that subject. I had the impression that the idea itself of a further technique to be added in time to the too many already received and practiced daily. wrote that it was an important technique.. It was as if she felt she had made so great an effort in setting the habit of a daily practice of the First Kriya. Full of enthusiasm. up to this day. the "Second Kriya"! I looked at her with a meek and piercing look. had written. a long time ago. I wondered what more important matters they had to discuss. Strange to say . who received Kriya initiation many years ago and had once lived by our school's general offices.Y. having had plenty of opportunities to do so. I was sure that practicing with such a procedure would have a strong effect on my spiritual evolution. My interviewer was that elderly lady who taught me the preliminary techniques and was officially invested as a "Meditation Counselor". I had still not recovered from the "shock". many written details were ambiguous and no direct initiations were ever given. an unforgivable negligence . When I received the last lesson of the correspondence course. she lost such written material and never asked a copy of it. she had forgotten them entirely.Y. hesitant about how to perform the technique of Second Kriya and other instruction as well. she has remained fixed in her conviction. This last abomination was inconceivable to me: unintentionally she had revealed to me the lowest place in which she had pushed what P. in her opinion. to be practiced regularly in order to awaken Kundalini). Swami Pranabananda. So.

Yet. I had studied the whole reference literature as if preparing for a university exam. I was now consternated to bear witness to the senseless whims of a man on power. When the Minister arrived I was introduced to him. a Minister who would soon come to our country. she looked at me in bewilderment as if my impertinence had violated an implicit law: do not impudently enter the intimate dimension of her Sadhana. I was tranquil and waited. He declared that I was overexcited and this was not a good mark for a kriyaban (. I had trusted and respected the school. I hoped to clarify everything on that occasion and was looking forward to that appointment with great anticipation. formality. He was emphatic not to talk about Kechari Mudra and with regard to the head movements of Thokar. 33 .. had represented my horizon. he advised me brutally to restrict my practice to the First Kriya. in spite of that I wanted to see how to move my head correctly in order to practice that technique in a hypothetical future. the sensation I had was akin to meeting a business man. I could not accept any invitation to calm myself and drop the whole matter. I had to learn to be content with the basic teachings. hidden falsity and subtle violence to one's honesty were totally alien to one who devoted his life to practicing and teaching Kriya. might speak unfavorably of me. Those who saw me immediately after this meeting were shocked: they said I was unrecognizable. for so many years. who had more important affairs in mind and who was very irritable. I was in an atrocious mental and emotional state.. then briskly cut off discussion from that topic. I was left in dismay when I figured out that the Minister kept on postponing our meeting without valid reasons at all. Difficulties with the Printed Material Related to the Higher Kriyas After one year I received the lessons about the Third and the Fourth Kriya. we finally met. Since I decided not to give up. I didn't even attempt to clarify my doubts by addressing to old kriyabans. I wrote to the school management to schedule an appointment with one of its representatives. I was convinced that hypocrisy.Guru. bureaucracy. He said he would clarify my doubts as soon as possible. I went through something truly unpleasant. communicating back to the management of the school. After the interview with that ill-disposed figure. saying something that might have reduced the probability for me to obtain that coveted information in the future. She replied saying that what she had was enough. annoyed. I feared I could no longer rely on the heavenly relationship with that Kriya organization. he recommended me to write my questions to the school's head. I replied I would surely keep in consideration his advice. I was only in a desperate and deeply disappointed mood). A devotee with a honeyed voice suggested that I got an important earful from Gurudeva. which. There are childish thoughts that emerge in difficult moments: I was afraid that this man. In vain I replied that the movements of the head could not be shown through a letter: I was in front of a "wall" and the refusal was absolute.

Should it be polluted. was intimately relishing the whole situation. she specified . other people told me they had the same impression). She mentioned the fact that some students found in a well known Kriya Ashram a teacher who gave them Kriya initiation without any authorization and who gave techniques that had nothing to do with Kriya. which the group's rules had not been able to stifle entirely. then had branched out on his own opening another Kriya school: a "traitor" to her."the voice of God". was a "presence" in her life. aware of this. who had been formerly part of the direction of the organization. She finally said firmly.'s Ashram. I would be able to turn it into gold. for about an hour. I related my impressions to her. The Guru obeyed and in a flash of intuition foresaw all the disciple's future incarnations. that the Minister's advice embodied God's will. I remember particularly an anecdote that wanted to illustrate that everything the organization through its representatives asked me came directly from God. I tried to reason with her about my right and duty to explore all the possible sources. She was astonished that her many words and scolding proved useless. She mumbled something about India. I didn't understand. in response to which she became so serious and. Then she spoke about a disciple of P. I would have the intuition to separate the wheat from the chaff". some flowers and packets of incense were put before it. She went on explaining that the intelligence is a double-edged weapon: it can be used to eliminate the swelling of ignorance and also to cut off abruptly the lifeblood that sustains the spiritual path. knew that this destructive experience would be turned into something crucial both for me and for other people's spiritual improvement.Y. The selflearned enthusiast of Pranayama. those in which he would 34 . Then she lost herself talking about discipline. uninterruptedly.Y.Y.ordering him not to interfere with the disciple's freedom.. however in her sweet way. When we met.. In those moments of silence. I discussed the project of leaving for India in order to improve my Kriya. I had the sensation that some tears were going to form in his blissful eyes (it was not a bizarre feeling. when he heard an inner voice .. She told me what happened when one of his disciples decided to leave P.Y. The lady "Meditation Counselor" who was in another city blamed me for having made the interview with the Minister a troublesome event. loyalty. It slipped out of my mouth a very strong sentence of which I was then surprised: "Should I receive a Kriya teaching from the worse criminal in the world. She said with a sigh that my logic was originated from a wounded ego. beautiful and intelligent. got in the disciple's way to stop him. The Guru.Another part of myself. taken on the day of his death. It was framed nicely. She compared him to the angel Lucifer. she soberly uttered: "You have to consider it a warning: the Guru is not content with you"! There was not the least doubt that she was not joking at all. At that time I realized how P. although she never met him in person! She spoke at length. awakened from too long a sleep by means of a healthy "kick in the butt". about so many people that according to her were disappointed or found just drugs or lost the grace of their Guru-disciple relationship. I shifted my attention to a particular photograph of P. with her eyes pointed far off toward an indefinite spot.

be lost. jumping from one error to another – the path he was then relinquishing. something from which one could not escape: I just had to follow what I had been advised and not to look elsewhere "because that was God's will". but how could she thwart my inner nature? She did only what was in her power: she could not relieve my immense thirst for knowledge of the art of Kriya. Although she admired the earnestness with which I was making progress – unlike so many other tepid and half-hearted people who would go to her only to be reloaded with the motivation they could not find in themselves . Although remaining faithful to my Kriya organization. That monk at least on one point was right: I was not calm at all.Y. the disciple would return to the same path.she was dismayed.I found (save for an illumining sentence upon the role of Kechari Mudra) only a devastating banality. in the literature of the third disciple . I was determined to know Kriya inside out and nobody could stop me with any motivation. having met the tragedy of mental was the praxis of Kechari Mudra. I would lose myself in a labyrinth of enormous sufferings and who knows when I would be able to get back to the correct path. Looking into her beautiful but sad eyes. the second what were the psychophysical blows with which P.surprising and valuable since. My search took a particular route: she herself told me three names of some direct disciples of P. I didn't follow her suggestions. if they had some. By telling me of one or other episodes of P. I had no doubt that in the third millennium a person can read 35 . who had a clash with the school's board of directors and set up on their own. Without saying anything to her. assured it was possible to awaken the Chakras. pedagogically gifted. A faint expectation lingered in me that they gave the reader (who neglected the principal source to listen to their voice of dissent) the present of a more accurate didactic material. Then. were well guarded! Months later. she tried to let me share her experiences.Y. the second one was undoubtedly more professional. For a long time I hoped to find in some book clues which could help me to clarify my doubts concerning the practice of the Higher Kriyas . rather I would never be calm any more. he recounted exhaustively his anguish . I am very thankful to her for all her sincere efforts and time spent with me. but from of all his literature and tapes only one of his sentences shed a faint light upon one of the Higher Kriyas. The lady said that her Guru had been really accurate on the number of incarnations that the whole discouraging trip would have taken to be over – about thirty! The moral of this story was clear. If I had not done so. The secrets. in the end.Y. I purchased all their published material. they would come out with intriguing sentences. I was expecting that in order to show how they had become proficient with Kriya.'s life. in which he would keep on seeking – amid innumerable sufferings. taped lectures and all. The first disciple seemed an expert in idle chatter and was reluctant with giving practical instructions. because her devotion toward the Guru was totally alien to me. I had the clear impression that she was permanently expecting me to act in a somewhat "disloyal" way. I didn't accept vetoes. deeper than the material provided by the main school. the meditation counselor came to know that I had read the "forbidden" books.

presented as essential. was interesting: I made a present of it to some friends. among all P. I began reading some books written by Lahiri Mahasaya's disciples. I was acting as supported from "above". The failure came about 36 . a friend of mine showed me a letter in which she had called me "a man who stabs his Guru's back.whatever he considers more convenient and so I did. were but scattered notes copied from classical books on Yoga. The practical notes. so that they can do the same"! Her reaction had been so emphatic that I wasn't hurt at all. with an endless number of repetitions in addition to continuous changes of topic. although clarifying almost nothing. After some months.Y. Overcoming a certain reluctance. I could not see that this lethal approach prevented me from exerting watchfulness and discrimination. in my opinion. continuing a chain where each author would add something to mark his personal contribution.yet it's the way things went for about two years. I chose. who did not have any connection with P.'s writing. I am sure that while typewriting that letter and pouring into it lots of other considerations to free all the accumulated tension. imagining that the benedictions and the strength of the Guru were with me. Everyone embarked in a personal study of which those talks represented the peak. (At that time certain interesting books like Puran Purush had not yet been published. meaningless words. It originated from the obstinate decision of coping with the problems arising from a delicate relationship in the yogic way. resulted from the fact that. Seeing her own expectations regarding my behavior coming true. My hesitation in dropping the literature linked with P.Y.Y. They were but blank. I used to get annoyed at those people hinting about Kriya secrets to be gained outside P.'s writings.Y. I used to meet some kriyaban friends on Sundays. he was unique and I was confident that I would use only his teaching for the rest of my life. read crucial passages from those lessons and dwell on them during a walk. Then a profound crisis uprooted any previously acquired scheme and dogma. I deceived myself by repeating it internally like a Mantra while acting in a way contrary to ordinary common sense. The lack of care in them made me suppose that the author had not bothered checking the original texts he had quoted. her countenance was at last tranquil and serene as if tasting a delicious. handing out daggers to other people as well. affecting irretrievably her common sense. I felt a sort of tenderness toward her. a sentence that matched those plans of behavior toward which my blind instinct drove me. intimate satisfaction. I could sense that her actions were driven by waves of emotions and decades of steadfast conditioning. I decided to study again all the material furnished by the organization and to delve deeper into it. The books written by Lahiri Mahasaya's direct disciples (or by their disciples) were few: mainly commentaries on spiritual classics. which I considered unbearable.. He most probably took those quotations from books which were also quoting from other reference books. one of those drawing blood from a stone -.Y. I shudder at the thought of how fruitless our effort was -.'s legacy.) They disappointed me and made me miss the clarity of P.

7 By approaching the writings of Mère. but I really cannot describe the explosion of joy and the feeling of freedom I felt reading her comment to one of Sri Aurobindo's aphorisms. then I read Mother. After Sri Aurobindo's death. And in so far as you are capable of taking it and offering it. has developed into a way of living which is shunned This huge document — 6000 pages in 13 volumes — is the account of twentytwo years of Mother's discoveries. I was convinced that the other person was unable to live up to the standards of my actions. "In matter. To her. Then my illusory dream began to disintegrate. From 1958 to her death in 1973. accept yourselves to be impure and false and in that way you will be able to take up the Shadow and offer it.the intelligent and evolutive force at the base of any existing thing ." By saying on another occasion: "Morality is the great obstacle on the spiritual path". she wrote: "The need to be virtuous is the great obstacle to true self-giving. then thou wilt be more charitable and pitiful to others.and it was desolating and shameful. the Divine becomes perfect…" she wrote. Take your share of the burden. The aphorism (n. This is the origin of Falsehood and even more the very source of hypocrisy -. in a few. to discover a new mode of life in matter and narrated her extraordinary exploration to Satprem. I was prepared to read the usual things. For two years I had been introduced to the thought of Sri Aurobindo. slowly but inexorably. I refused to believe that I had acted wrongly.could come to a perfect manifestation on this planet! "The world is not an unfortunate accident: it is a miracle moving toward its full expression". the Mother was the one continuing his research and giving ground to his dream that the Divine . a book about the Mother (Mère) written by her beloved disciple: Satprem. 7 37 . Their talks are written out it Mother's Agenda. she stressed the value of not trying to become pure in other people's eyes. one with everything that is anti-divine.70) was: "Examine thyself without pity." Annotating it. I could not accept it. His Aphorisms and his epic poem Savitri had deeply impressed me. in 1951. In a first moment. See how much you are united. Do not try to be among the pure. or the Divine Materialism. Do not try to appear virtuous. then things will change. one should acknowledge one's dark side: in the depths of our being it stirs the same substance which.the refusal to accept to take upon oneself one's own share of the burden of difficulties. the Mother tried to find the passage to the next species. but to behave according to the truth of one's being. I believed that mine was an apparent failure and that one day everything would resolve in my favor. Inspiration from the Works of Mère and Sri Aurobindo For some months I wasn't able to track down the thread of a single coherent thought. Accept to be with those who are in darkness and give it all with total love.

all the time. she always began with the repetition of the Mantra and there was a response in the cells of her body: they all started vibrating as "seized with an intensity of aspiration" and that vibration went on expanding. as well as the next ones. OM NAMO BHAGAVATEH . all. all the movements of this body. Had he reached the point where we are now. she said to Satprem: "Sri Aurobindo gave none [Mantra]. 38 .. people become true individuals only society. They become galvanized. Instead of all the usual vibrations of the body. I was very impressed with how she dealt with the theme of Japa. She recounted how during the screening of a film she heard the Sanskrit Mantra: OM NAMO BHAGAVATEH. It is not the place here to dwell upon the subtle phases of her work in the body: she used the Mantra to hasten it. without calling: it should issue forth from the being spontaneously. But now that things are ready... all. She did this and the result was extraordinary. like a reflex. are drawn from Mother's Agenda. as it were. It becomes as hard as a diamond. power and knowledge. "With those who have no Mantra." [This quotation. as it were". he would have seen that the purely psychological method is inadequate and that a Japa is necessary. with this mantra: OM NAMO BHAGAVATEH .. all the gestures I make. all of a sudden" but "It has to spring up without thinking. to find my Mantra by myself. there is now only one single vibration. Furthermore: "Mantra has a great action: it can prevent an accident. even if they have a strong habit of meditation or concentration. harmony. a single massive concentration. all the time. What was important for me was the fact that she dared to challenge Sri Aurobindo's authority. in a tremendous concentration – with a single vibration. all the words I utter. he said that one should be able to do all the work without having to resort to external means. It simply springs forth in a flash. exactly like a reflex." In many passages of Mother's Agenda they discussed how the Mantra calms the persons in surrounding areas by creating an atmosphere of such an intensity that disharmonies cease to exist. when I am normal). because only Japa has a direct action on the body. Actually. something around them remains hazy and vague. they are perfectly and in a compact manner unified around their divine center. I have done ten years of work in a few months.] Her practice of Japa consolidated into a life-long habit. She reported that: "It (the Mantra) coagulates something: all the cellular life becomes one solid. in a constant pursuit of a greater beauty. even though she tried to extract from those disciples looking for inspiration at her feet all their hidden potential. When she sat for meditation.. compact mass. as if all the cells of the body had . Mère did not behave like a traditional Guru." A last amazing remark I quote is that she was able to notice the difference between those who have a Mantra and those who don't. whereas Japa imparts to those who practice it with a kind of precision. all the time. I became stiff from it. According to her teaching. So I had to find the method all alone.. I was so stiff that I was one single mass. She wondered what would happen if she repeated that Mantra during her daily meditation. are accompanied and upheld by or lined. everything I do." But the Mantra is also the sweetest of all the things: "On the days when I have no special preoccupations or difficulties (days I could call normal. a kind of solidity: an armature.

I had the impression that I had a fever. I began to look at people who belonged to the same path as shrewd persons who knew how to take the best from life. tried to usurp its function. It tried to diminish the value of Japa. while I was reading. I was contemplating the shimmering splendor of a new way of looking at the spiritual path. In her aspiration for a full manifestation of the Divine in the atoms of inert matter. Spellbound. Two seemingly opposite worlds -. my mind was devoured by the illusion of adopting more advanced tools of "evolution". an illusion.And yet in that period. In the very beginning.) After three days. inner and outward). being like a detached "witness". at the highest degree of excellence. My desire to abide by the values instilled in me by my culture (a rational attitude open to the value of artistic creation) was gradually twisted.that of a rarefied paradisiac atmosphere (which I imagine is enjoyed by the ascetic souls) and that of the full enjoyment of the earthly beauty (so dear to artists) -. after some months I ceased to practice either Japa or the discipline or being a detached "witness" and forgot the matter. while another one. in a euphorically vivid way. thanks to a certain merit of which I was unaware. Reading The Divine Materialism (it conveyed all the power of the Agenda) I was astonished by the beauty of what she wrote and the memory of that past period returned in full. What now exerted a great impact upon me was that she reasoned like a westerner and treated the themes of India's spirituality with a western language which was both lyrical and rational. Mère's thought began to open my eyes on the actual situation of my way of practicing Kriya Yoga and revealed the complexity of my self-deception. a reversal of values. (This discipline is recommended in almost all the books dealing with oriental meditative practices. or in spite of much talking were still uncertain if they should take a decisive step and begin with it. I tried to live in a more conscious way (continuously attentive of any perception. my "spiritually-oriented" brain didn't know how to answer back to 39 . I regarded those who refused it.could unify in each kriyaban's consciousness. She was able to express. I felt myself under unbearable stress as if it all was a pretense. Meanwhile. as idiots who didn't know what they were losing. Japa didn't enter my life. was slowly but inevitably happening in me. Sometimes. Consequently. I was convinced that finding Kriya was like a stroke of luck. She would flawlessly express an enlightening and comforting truth: both the contemplation of the beauty in nature and the emotion arising from listening to classic music were considered a bridge to the spiritual experience. It was as if a large portion of my brain withdrew. Entering a Kriya-founded organization meant to be ensnared and bewildered by many fairy tales. there was a fragrance which excited and moved me. I experimented with Mother's Om Namo Bhagavate . a gift from the Divine. A revolution.but it did not worked for me. which did its utmost in believing what was convenient to believe. I tried to carry out the well-known instruction to resolutely maintain a impartial attitude toward both pleasant and unpleasant events. my own innermost convictions for which I had no means to express nor clarify even to myself.

any censure from other persons and reacted by running away or reciprocating violently. Subsequently, it became so cunning that I started to behave "normally" in social life; people began to look at me as a man who chose a simple life trend, marked by lofty principles - not revealing how my fairness of judgment was impaired, and practically inexistent. My first efforts in exploring my book-learned Pranayama were accompanied by intelligence and by a bit of courage too: I could only rely on my intuition. The Pranayama discipline was for me an art to be perfected with the greatest concentration. While practicing, I dreamt about its unthinkable progression and was quietly excited during each instant of it. This disclosed a real heaven for me! With regard to the way I tackled the preliminary techniques of Hong So and Om, I was stirred up by the idea (which proved false) that they were not effective like Kriya Pranayama. As a consequence I expressed a never-again-tobe-found commitment: the result of which rewarded me immensely. Afterwards, having received Kriya, the idea of practicing "the fastest technique in the field of spiritual evolution" made the intensity of my effort lose its edge. My Kriya Pranayama, practiced with enthusiasm for some months, became a tranquil good habit. Apart from other foolish thoughts, I had swallowed the childish idea that each Kriya breath could produce "the equivalent of a solar year of spiritual evolution" and that through a million of these breaths I would infallibly reach Cosmic Consciousness. I tried just to perform the greatest possible number of Pranayama in order to complete quickly the abovementioned number. The iron will of my discipline was softened by the hypnotic atmosphere of the "Guru's Blessings". I didn't realize into what situation I had relentlessly slipped and therefore I felt no shame or remorse. I felt myself a privileged being to whom an unexpected advantage had been granted. "Aren't you glad of having found a true Guru?" -- for years I heard this refrain from the organization -- "Aren't you enthusiastic that He has been chosen for you by God Himself?" "Oh yeess we are happy" we replied with tears of joy. This idea, more than any other factor, had lethal effects on me: it was the cradle in which my ego was fed and strengthened. To remind myself that I entered the Kriya organization only to perfect my already good practice of Pranayama created a thorny pain. It was imperative to recreate the spirit of an authentic search. I had to stop behaving like a man who had found a treasure, hides and sleeps satisfied upon it; it was necessary from now on, if Pranayama was really a treasure, as I was convinced, to use my intelligence to perfect it. Two Important Decisions What I am about to describe was the most rewarding period of my life. I look at it as a sun and I hope I will never forget its lesson. After reading Sri Aurobindo and Mère, I found the courage to be again a self-taught person. During the season

of my first interest in esoteric matters and oriental practice of meditation I found easy-to-follow instructions in an unassuming book. The instructions were simple: I put my passion in them, especially the wish to pursue, through Yoga, my idea of Beauty. Day after day, when other distractions and doubts came, when the initial enthusiasm diminished, I carried on tenaciously my ideals and my discipline. The result was the Kundalini experience. Now, about 12 years later, I found myself in the same situation. I was ready to carry on tenaciously, despite criticisms and doubts, two basic ideas: 1. I had to throw away the Kriya routine recommended by my organization and apply Patanjali's principles. 2. I had to achieve the state of mental silence by using Japa, Mère's wonderful instrument, during the day. I adhered to my decision and the result was the breathless state. Let me clarify each point. 1. Kriya Routine Abiding by Patanjali's Principles In the mystical path (Yoga), Patanjali pinpoints eight steps: Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana, Samadhi. 8 There are different ways of translating these Sanskrit terms. Yama: self-control (nonviolence, avoid lies, avoid stealing, avoid being lustful and seek non-attachment). Niyama: religious observances (cleanliness, contentment, discipline, study of the Self and surrender to the Supreme God). As for Asana (position of the body), Patanjali explains that it must be stable and comfortable. There is nothing remarkable up to this point. The first interesting concept is Pranayama, defined as regulation of the Prana by repetition of particular breathing patterns. Therefore there is no hint about particular preliminary exercises of concentration and much less of meditation. From Pranayama a state of calmness and poise is created which becomes the foundation of the subsequent step: Pratyahara where the awareness is disconnected from external reality; all our five senses have thus been turned inward. You understand that the techniques which require movement should be completed before this phase: the breath and the heart should have all the necessary time to slow down. The so called Higher Kriyas (each one of them required movement) had to be ideally practiced inside the Pranayama phase. To them a long phase of internalization of consciousness and energy in perfect immobility should follow. What comes after Pratyahara? Patanjali goes on explaining that, after the

Patanjali was a pioneer in the art of rationally handling the mystical path, aiming at individualizing a universal, physiological direction of the inner events that explained why a certain phenomenon, inherent to the spiritual path, should be preceded and necessarily followed by other ones. His extreme synthesis may be criticized or, because of its temporal distance, may be hard to understand; however, his work is of extraordinary importance. Many authors of Kriya Yoga say that the theory expressed by Patanjali is the same as Kriya Yoga, that Patanjali and Lahiri Mahasaya substantially dealt with the same practice. I believe that this is partly true. Patanjali's is far from clarifying all the aspects of Kriya and there is a remarkable difference between the final steps of his Yoga (especially Dharana and Dhyana) and the related phases of Kriya Yoga. 41

breath's disappearance, a yogi should look for a physical or abstract object onto which he might turn his concentration and practice in a sort of contemplative meditation in such a way as to lose himself in it. Dharana is concentration (focusing the mind on it). Dhyana is the persistence of a focusing action -meditation or contemplation as a steady, uninterrupted flow of awareness, which fully explores all aspects of the chosen object). Samadhi is perfect spiritual absorption (deep contemplation in which the object of meditation becomes inseparable from the meditator himself). From many years' experience and from some readings, I had no doubt that these suggestions had to be understood as concentration on the Chakras. Dharana is the act of focusing our attention; Dharana spontaneously becomes Dhyana, the borders between the two being indistinguishable in practice: you begin to concentrate on each Chakras and forget yourself. Samadhi is the sudden burning with joy that sometimes appears. This was my basic understanding in those days. In a few days, after an intense practice of Japa, I would have realized that Dhyana is not only self oblivion but achieving the breathless state as well; Samadhi is not only boundless joy but also the slowing down of the cardiac heartbeat while the body appears like dead. From that moment onwards, I began my routine with Maha Mudra, then I moved to the Pranayama phase which consisted of three sub-phases: Kriya Pranayama (12-24), Third Kriya (12) and Kriya Pranayama with the Mantra Om, Na, Mo... (6-12). The Third Kriya was the technique with movements of the head that I received from my Kriya school. Kriya Pranayama with Mantra Om, Na, Mo...was Pranayama enriched by placing the syllables of the Mantra in the respective Chakras, with no physical movements -- it had the purpose of preparing the Pratyahara phase. Pratyahara began with a procedure that up till today I call "mental Pranayama". My awareness paused on each Chakra about ten seconds - as a bee drawn to the nectar in flowers, hovering upon each in great delight - slightly "touching" their nucleus along an anticlockwise (as viewed from above) path. I was absorbed by a great delight where I lost my space and time references. The concentration on the third eye - that "inward eye" which Wordsworth with appropriate words defines as "the bliss of solitude" - happened spontaneously. 2. Mental Silence and Japa Recalling my past failures with Japa, I decided to try again but with another Mantra and choose the Mantra of Swami Ramdas whose biography I had acquired and read in those days. 9 He moved far and wide all over India

In Quest of God by Swami Ramdas. Swami Ramdas was born in 1884 at Hosdrug, Kerala, India, and named Vittal Rao. He lived a normal life until he was thirty-six and experienced the usual ups and downs of a householder's life. Often he inquired about the true meaning of life and felt the necessity of pursuing the spiritual path in order to get the real "Peace." At the right moment, his father initiated him into the Ram Mantra, 42

unceasingly repeating the Mantra: Sri Ram Jai Ram Jai Jai Ram Om. To meet the simplicity of his life and the greatness of his experience was very inspiring: his photo - the almost childish simplicity of his smile - kindled my intuition and led me to try his Mantra. Helped by a mala (rosary beads), I started to practice Japa aloud during a walk for 108 times and then to continue it mentally during the remaining part of that walk and during my daily chores. Even though the oriental traditions recommend to do Japa mentally, I was confident that it should be done aloud - at least for an initial set of a hundred repetitions. The sound of that Mantra, which I had already heard in a spiritual song recording, was very pleasant. I loved to caress its vibration, prolong it on my lips, make it vibrate in my chest and invest it with my heart's aspiration. My attitude was not that of a supplicating and sobbing devotee, but that of a man one step away from his goal. Even if sometimes I felt a bit dazed, I maintained the determination never to discard the practice. Since I observed, while doing it, an irresistible impulse to put everything in order, I thought that the Mantra could work in a similar way by cleaning my mental stuff and putting my "psychological furniture" in order.

Breathless State An event arose from this decision, which still remains in my heart as a peak experience. I practiced Japa every day in the morning and Kriya at noon in the open countryside. One day, during mental Pranayama, while I was climbing up and down the Chakras, I distinctly perceived a fresh energy sustaining my body from inside. The more I relaxed, the more I became simultaneously aware both of the Chakras and of the body as a whole. The breath, which in the meantime had became very short, eventually came to immobility, like a pendulum gently reaching the equilibrium point. The mind also settled down. This condition lasted some minutes, without any feeling of uneasiness: there was neither the least quiver of surprise, or the thought: "Finally I have it!". The event was enjoyable beyond words: in a blue-painted profundity, I was implacably crushed
assuring him that by repeating it unceasingly he would, in due time, achieved the divine happiness he was aspiring to. It was then that he renounced the secular life and went forth in quest of God as a mendicant Sadhu. The first years of his newly found life are described in his aforesaid autobiography. The Mantra "Om Sri Ram Jai Ram Jai Jai Ram" was ever on his lips. Besides the practice of Japa, he adopted the discipline of looking upon other people as forms of Ram – God - and of accepting every happening as coming from the will of God. In a short time the Mantra disappeared from his lips and entered his heart. He beheld a small circular light in the spot between his eyebrows, which yielded him thrills of delight. Then the dazzling light permeated and absorbed him. Lost in this inexpressible bliss he would sit for hours. The world appeared to him as a dim shadow. A stage was soon reached when this dwelling in the spirit became a permanent and unvarying experience. Ramdas attained Mahasamadhi in 1963. 43

Many suggestions about the practice of Japa would amount to a heap of banalities -.a "Prayer of the heart". In the following days the same events happened again. I felt a greater respect for the the simplest Kriya techniques. In my opinion. With enthusiasm I plunged into Japa literature and studied the subject of Mantra and prayer in different mystical paths.the mala that you use for Japa should be made or this or that material. it produced a miracle! I saw that neglecting Japa by one who is practicing Kriya Yoga means to relinquish a most formidable instrument. it should not be seen by others. to the Hesychasm and to the Sufi mystical path. Saint Teresa of Avila described nine levels of many times you feel desperate since this noise blocks any attempt at concentration! There are some thoughts which you can visualize. In the writings of Saint Teresa of Avila (and of Saint John of the Cross also) I saw clearly that perfection in the spiritual life can be reached only by expanding the limit in the practice of Internal Oration. being able to find in them innumerable ways of application. Japa annihilates the mental background noise. of which presence you are aware only when you sit for Kriya -. it was natural to listen to the suggestions of intuition. I felt that my subconscious mind was cooperating with my efforts. I was astonished that Japa. Some author gave an eloquent example of how it is possible to write a book about nothing. I think that few 44 . The Sumeru bead should never be passed: if you will do the mala twice. you should turn it and make the last bead become the first bead of the second round -. the miracle happened. There is no need to clarify that we are referring to a prayer which goes beyond supplication. Before starting my Kriya the beauty of nature and. Cohabitation with Continuous Prayer I verified a perfect association between the practice of Japa and the attainment of the breathless state. identify and block. beyond words themselves -. at the same time. during mental Pranayama. one of the simplest techniques in the world. I looked at the surrounding panorama wondering if I would experience that state once again: after about 35-40 minutes I had already completed the active part – the last breaths of Pranayama – and then. how devastatingly deprived of any passion! A soul stirring ardent feeling and sincerity was to be found in the literary material relating to the experience of Saint Teresa of Avila. This is won when we practice Japa! A new period began: I was able to put a consistent amount of creativeness and sensibility in my Kriya routine. after no more than two or three minutes. but a diffuse persistent background noise nullifies all your efforts. situated above the whole stupid. could bring such a valuable result! Where my best intentions failed.

Hesychasm is a Christian orthodox movement considering inner peace to be a necessity for every human being. then increase to 12000. of universal spiritual appeal. The discipline is tough: they watch their thoughts and courageously fight them. to mean that their first duty is to withdraw inward.catholics are aware of this richness. Over the centuries.the meaning of a plea to God with the only purpose of obtaining personal favors or blessings on a suffering humanity. I was stricken by the opening words: "By the grace of God I am a Christian man. he found a spiritual teacher who accepted him as a disciple and gradually clarified to him every detail of the practice of the "continuous prayer". coming back from the Holy Sepulcher. Then they engage in mental asceticism. The pilgrim was resolute about covering an infinite distance across the steppes. Much of their literature is occupied with the psychological analysis of such tempting thoughts. It is imminently practical in its advice to not dither in starting the Jesus Prayer. in order to find a spiritual guide that would reveal to him the secret of praying that way. (Anonymous) The origin of this spiritual classic is in many ways a mystery. My worldly goods are a knapsack with some dried bread in it on my back. The main reason for the work's attraction is the presentation of a wandering hermit's life as the model existence for those who would truly lead a spiritual life. namely the rejection of tempting thoughts. 45 . and in my breast pocket a Bible. In order to realize the ideal of "praying ceaselessly". a great deal of incomprehension and misunderstanding has arisen relative to the practice of Oration. identify the author as Russian Orthodox monk Archimandrite Mikhail Kozlov. edifying book.soul. they try to experience quietness and perceive the "Uncreated Light" which is considered the highest of the mystical achievements.the way Saint Paul had recommended . the pilgrim is first instructed to repeat the Jesus Prayer 6000 times a day.with meaning. Some. They affirm that the first step is that their body is to be held immovable for a long time. arrogance or conceit. if he had to. After restricting their external activities. Such Prayer involves the entire human being . The story is that of a pilgrim.with rare exceptions . For many devotees prayer had . on the basis of other witnesses. The essence of this mystical movement is to be found in the book The Way of a Pilgrim and The Pilgrim Continues His Way. his ardor was awarded. The Prayer is said "with the heart" . They interpret Christ's injunction in the Gospel of Matthew which says to "go into your closet to pray". One day. with intent. And that is a monk. striving to the best of their abilities to ignore the physical senses. by my actions a great sinner." It is a simple. No one knows for certain if it is a true story about a particular pilgrim or a spiritual fiction created to propagate the mystical side of the Orthodox Christian faith. mind and body. who stopped at Mount Athos and told about his lifelong search for the teaching on how "to pray continually" . A great emphasis is placed on humility: disaster will befall if one proceeds with pride. and by calling a homeless wanderer of the humblest birth who roams from place to place. The concept of Internal Oration risked an almost total eclipse.

It sees the open space within the heart and it beholds itself entirely luminous and full of discrimination. and focus your physical gaze. as spontaneous and effortless as the breath itself. in a corner by yourself. leading to the heart center. at once it sees things of which it previously knew nothing.H." in: The Philokalia (5 vols. Once one gets over the obstacle of the navel. from now onwards. existed. I began reading the Philokalia. an unceasing joy. 46 . tr. Ware. P. Restrain the drawing-in of breath through your nostrils.72-3. Hesychast tradition wrote: "Let the remembrance of Jesus be present with each breath. a whole path unfolds. and do what I tell you: close the door. which is often used by the Hesychasts. London: Faber and Faber. and search inside yourself with your intellect so as to find the place of the heart. In my opinion this is a tedious text showing the attitude of the mind. his life has become. when you persist and practice this task day and night. where all the powers of the soul reside. some pearls are disseminated. you will find. to complicate the simplest things. Here and there. 1995) 4. To start with. obsessed by sin and temptations. "The Three Methods of Prayer. It is a collection of texts on prayer and asceticism written from the 4th to the 15th Centuries [first published in the Greek language in 1782]. St. similar to Kriya Yoga. Years later. Symeon writes: "Sit down in a quiet cell. The chanting of the Prayer was synchronized with one's breathing. Later. I was struck by the fact that many instructions had astonishing similarities with the Kriya Yoga path. so as not to breathe easily. like walking out of a dark room into fresh air and sunlight.E. Like a person enjoying the beauty of a chilly winter near the fireside. upon the center of your belly or your navel. Its magic spreads into each facet of life. G. persisting." Pseudo-Simeon. and withdraw your intellect from everything worthless and transient. a limitless happiness will be reached". the innermost "secret of the heart. it cannot separate him from God. and then you will know the value of the Hesychia. you will find there a darkness and an impenetrable density. having received Lahiri Mahasaya's Navi Kriya. I discovered that the hesychastic practice involved a breathing exercise with a tongue position akin to that of Kechari Mudra. the pilgrim quotes the Gospel passage of the birds of the air and the lilies of the field . methodical and precise." I was stunned by the fact that a Christian tradition. Sherrard.. I remained astonished by the fact that one is encouraged to be tenacious in praying with the focus of concentration on the navel: ". as though miraculously. In this wonderful condition he comes to experience the effulgence of the divine light. The comparison with the Navi Kriya technique is impressive...Then he finds the Prayer at his lips and in his mind every waking hour. one who practices continuous prayer contemplates either the sad or the joyous spectacle of life having found the infinity of the skies residing in their heart! Prayer is a marvelous gem whose glitter warms up life. For as soon as the intellect attains the place of the heart." In order to give an idea of what.identifying himself with them as completely dependent on God: whatever happens. together with the whole of your this way it is possible to find a joyless and lightless obscurity but. Palmer. Rest your beard on your chest. and K.

when he has been granted such an experience. All these instructions can be a great inspiration for a kriyaban to reconsider the technique of Japa and of Thokar from a new perspective. The heart is continually applied to the Dhikr. One’s consciousness is no longer encumbered by the spontaneous inception of images . One perseveres assiduously. proceeding from the open space within the heart. The instruction is to feel one’s head moving to the chest and dwelling therein. In their literature. which prevents the meditation. what can you answer to those kriyabans who object that none of the Kriya Gurus recommend the practice of Japa? They have missed the point: Kriya Yoga is a particular way of treading the Hesychast path. then to "open" his eyes there and look at the world from his chest. continuous prayer". the greatest effect was obtained by blending the perception of the throbs of the heart with the syllables of the prayer. The "inner dialog". the darkness turns into day and the candle of the mind is put out by the sun of the divine light (Qur'an)". I went on resolutely using my chosen 47 . It is the most sound and natural state of the mind. but as delicate. returns wholly transformed to normal life. until the syllables are effaced from the heart and only the meaning of the words remains present: a touch of divine recollection drives the mind crazy – the most intoxicating of joys begins to expand within. warm and responsive to the emotions of love! The heart is filled with the most loving and subtle Bliss! In this state one becomes "entirely" luminous. The illumination comes from inside.I didn't find a description of the practice of Thokar (as I found later in the Sufi literature) but the description of the prayer entering the heart was unforgettable. "The rust upon the heart is burnt. is under control: one can live permanently in a state called "the guard of the mind". This is an advanced stage of the spiritual practice and attempting to accomplish it prematurely can cause very serious emotional harm. in such a way that the heart is occupied with neither "family" nor "money". The consciousness slips then into it and contemplates the "Uncreated Light". Of course. When you study and consider all this. I was inspired by his courageous way of living and by the central idea of starting with a set number of Mantra repetitions and then increasing it until it becomes automatic. The person is led through darkness and "an impenetrable density" to the depth of his heart. The most secret part is what happens in the space within the heart. most inspiring instruction was given to avoid distraction. The Hesychast. One continues until a great absorption makes it impossible to go on in this way. This descent is quite literally taken and is not at all considered to be a metaphorical expression. Inspiration from this literature pushed me to achieve the condition of "uninterrupted. I read also something about the Sufi path where the art of prayer (Dhikr) was developed in an astonishing way. One begins the practice by uttering the Mantra aloud – this is the Dhikr of the tongue. where Prayer has a pivotal importance. The world is perceived in a totally different way: not as rough and hostile. I felt a wave of attraction for the wandering hermit's life.this unencumbered state is the main attribute of a religious life.

As when I am in the fresh air. It lasted a few months. I don't concentrate upon it but I breathe it. because it is the most real thing which has ever been experienced"! It seemed impossible to lose it. the Silence. I thought: "I must not forget this experience ever. He discussed the manner in which the Peace. which lasted about three months. remaining centered on the feeling of unchangeable calmness. I felt I had reached something solid. then I lost it. The mental substance was perceived clear like a spotless mirror. 48 . However there were days when I had the impression of using a pneumatic hammer tearing asunder the concrete of my mind's perplexities. I interrupted the mental chanting of the Mantra only when talking to others. I took all the necessary time to cross innumerable mental swamps and reach a condition where Japa went on effortlessly. the freedom in Infinity descended. That remarkable effort created a paradisaical condition in my life. into the sunlight. I melted away any doubt by walking as much as possible and repeating my Mantra in a passionate way. still. The world of the "traveling Gurus" was getting closer to my life and I could not avoid meeting a couple of them. but I was able to maintain the state of mental silence: the secret was not being involved in the images arising from the words. Now all my efforts seemed to compact around an intoxicating merger with a celestial state of bliss. It was like walking out of a dark room into the fresh air. This created a moral strength which turned into a calm euphoria: the certainty of edging closer to something stable and immutable within the evanescent flux of my existence. I lived it as a bright. I felt perfectly at ease. My being protested as if I was doing the stupidest thing in the world. dazzling Prayer. surrounded him and remained with him for months afterwards. after his long periods of study in England. Many years had to pass before a similar celestial condition could materialize again in my life. many beautiful experiences during my meditation routines seemed to have the consistency of an infinite sequence of reflexes upon the water. The inner resistance was colossal. This condition reminded me of what Sri Aurobindo wrote about the moment he first stepped on Indian soil. without any desire to fulfill. By looking at the past. I want to have it every day of my life.Mantra. Its Divine Magic spread in each facet of my life. in the same way my path became an experience of pure enjoyment.

He advocated the necessity of starting all over again. was hinted at. he said it comes with time. Navi Kriya. but I could almost touch the marvelous possibility of deepening my Pranayama. He explained that if a syllable is mentally chanted in a Chakra's location with real intensity. it creates a "psycho-physical blow". The statement was worthy to be taken into consideration. after skimming through the written material published by our Kriya organization. to make people interested in the Kriya school founded by that Swami and it would never include practical explanations. the absolute confidentiality was broken and precious information (Talabya Kriya. he talked with a Minister and inquired about a sentence by P. he pretended not to be able to link it with the Kriya Yoga he had been practicing for some time. Obviously that book. from initiation into First Kriya. Incidentally. Later. besides what was fully described in the written material. had to serve as bait..P. never talked with him about techniques. settling down after fair number of breaths. the group received part of the 49 . as he requested. At his arrival. One of those friends to whom I passed on my obsession with finding out all the mechanics of Kriya. the practitioner . claiming he was teaching the original Lahiri Mahasaya's Kriya .'s was mentioned as a slightly modified form of it. I was positively excited when I read that the practice of Pranayama should be considered inaccurate and wrong if. next to relinquishing his body.. according to which: "The Chakras can be awakened by psycho-physical blows given at their different locations. I found a book written by an Indian Swami. He heard of another a group of kriyabans in Europe who had invited a person from India to their group.Y. brought me important information.CHAPTER 4 IN SEARCH OF THE ORIGINAL KRIYA During a trip to Vienna (Austria). while inhaling or exhaling.without closing his ears had not listened to the internal sound of Om. thus he lost two thirds of the students on the spot." The Brother reassured him about its meaning: no other hypothetical technique. Reading that book. especially by insisting in touching the uvula with the tip of the tongue. clarifying my doubts regarding Kechari Mudra and Higher Kriyas as well. Many did not accept creating with him a bond of formal "discipleship". only to learn that this Swami was very old. like innumerable others which I would read in the future. I had the sensation that its author knew the whole process of Kriya Yoga far better than many other teachers. and the person who hosted him had not received Kriya from him. Those who accepted his conditions received initiation. He heard also about a Kriya Ashram in Europe where allegedly lived a Swami who taught original Kriya. There was no news about the identity of him. It referred to the use of a Mantra coupled with breath. During a "Convocation". I had no idea of when and where I could have the opportunity to encounter this teacher.Y. it was surely from a very deep practice of Pranayama. especially the Higher Kriyas. About Kechari Mudra.) leaked out. After some months he was there.

First Teacher outside the Organization Being about to undergo surgery in the United States. this I did. I lived for some days in the sweetest reality. hysteria. that I could taste it every day. probably only the technique of the Second Kriya.H. whom I will refer to as S. stimulated my interest to guess the principle underlying the promised deepening of the Kriya Pranayama technique. something wonderful. others. Recalling a phrase escaped from the lips of the lady meditation counselor about a variation of Kriya Pranayama taught to some disciples by P. While reading and rereading his book. happened.Y. and we even extolled the value of Japa. The book written by the Indian Swami. returned to the comfortable abode of our organization. All my doubts were clarified: the person seemed intelligent and not dogmatic. taught a "slightly modified form of Kriya". Devoured by the demon of finding the original Kriya. so sweet. I had a private talk with another Minister of my Kriya school.Y.. free from work. and a paradise would have been opened to me. I had just read his book: it was the intensity of my practice that was extreme! I had a clear perception that a state of inconceivable sweetness was mine. I never went over 48-60 breaths. I could also talk about how to build a good routine. That moment came up at last! The introductory 50 . return to the simplicity of the afore described routine. We were in perfect tune about everything. But the door that I opened could not be closed. I worked very hard to meet him and receive his Kriya initiation on that occasion. materialized so easily. I was excited like a child receiving the most beautiful of all gifts. a "contact" to be preserved with the utmost care during the day. confusion would have ended forever. With the hope of restoring that very period of my life where I received the deepest satisfaction from the "Om technique" (received from my school) I gave my soul to that practice. The strange part was that I did not know the teacher yet. Omkar became the unique focus of my concentration.. I decided to go on with my search. Some of those kriyabans followed that Indian master and disappeared as if sucked into a black hole. during the practice and in every moment when I rested. I convinced myself that the key technical addition consisted in mentally chanting Om in the Chakras while exerting all the possible attention to the internal sounds. It would have sufficed to consider the search concluded. Since from my Kriya school I had learned to practice Kriya Pranayama with open or half closed mouth. I can't remember how many of these breaths I used to practice each day: surely. the author of the book was going to make a stop in Europe. What I hoped so ardently in the past and was brutally refused to me. All chaos. The inner sound appeared after just four days of painstaking practice. wait for Kechari to be obtained in time. tired of a practice characterized by a lot of dissatisfaction. At that time. After these pleasing breaths I went on listening inwardly. chased by my suspicion that P.Higher Kriyas.

51 . Like a thread passing through all the pearls of a necklace. long hair and beard marked the features of the typical sage. My obsession was: "What kind of throat sounds are to be produced in this original Kriya. Omkar was coursing through all the different phases of Kriya. The initiation into the First Kriya thrilled and disappointed me at the same time: the forward bendings that preceded the Maha Mudra were really precious and so was the final meditation (improperly called Paravastha) but the Kriya Pranayama seemed to have disappeared and reduced to a short. I took glimpses of him while he spoke. had simplified the original technique. trying to transmit this quivering to their body. I didn't succeed in practicing even one Kriya session exactly in the way he explained. The best thing was to remain aware of the breath (a calm short breath. Furthermore. he touched some of them (their head and chest) making his hand vibrate. purely mental process. practicing as much as possible. Returning home. Maha Mudra was not separated from his peculiar form of Pranayama which was not separated from mental Pranayama. I therefore did not grasp at once all the implication of those concepts. He didn't teach Kriya Pranayama proper with the long breath anymore. hidden by the front rows. I spent every morning wrapped in the warmth of my home. Unfortunately that Swami too. he gave himself completely to us so that we could feel the flavor of that experience. his old age. I had the opportunity to realize this. appealing words were for me a revelation but. year after year. His stupendous. I decided in fact to add to my routine (after Maha Mudra and before his form of Pranayama) "my" Kriya Pranayama with a long breath. almost imperceptible and on the verge of disappearing). Among the people who attended his seminars for a long time. One of his intimate disciples confirmed to me that in past he had been taught Kriya Pranayama with long breath and mental chanting of Om in each Chakra. there was no mystery about the many technical details of Kriya Yoga he kept on changing. I heard him talk of Lahiri Mahasaya's legacy according to his personal experience. you should engage yourselves in being aware of at least 1728 breaths a day.conference was for me of great emotional impact. the inquisitiveness in learning the new technical details made me unable to give due attention to what he was saying. at certain moments. to which center does the energy rise in the spine?" To make the students understand the proper aspect of the movement of Omkar. the Omkar reality had to be perceived not only in the aspect of sound and light but also in the aspect of a "swinging sensation" (some other time he spoke about a feeling of pressure). It was winter and I had a three week vacation. The theoretical concepts he introduced were absolutely new for me and created a beautiful consistent frame for a Kriya praxis conceived as a unique progressive process of tuning with the Omkar reality. He had a majestic and noble aspect. during the course of the years. he was "handsomely" wrapped in his ocher clothes. Since in his book it was written that if you want to make remarkable spiritual progress. He was leading the auditorium into a wondrous dimension.

Literally devoured by the thirst for obtaining the complete teachings. and contemplate the pure celestial sky above them. Here I could wander the snow-white countryside aimlessly. During my spare time. Everything was as if it were transfigured. he focused only in passing on its nucleus.could result in a useless distraction for the students and a waste of time for him as a teacher. still at work. I was in a room from which I could glimpse the distant mountains through a window pane. The book he 52 . but also some of the basic techniques such as Kechari Mudra and Navi Kriya) triggered an inexorable mechanism which pushed away the people who were most indispensable to him. visualizing the possibility of a future deepening. he expressed himself adamantly: the request of being initiated in them implied a lack of engagement in the basic techniques. reducing all dissonances. everything seemed surrounded by a 'padded coating'. As for receiving the complete form of it or other advanced techniques. While I was lazily getting about. it was like living in a perfect reality and the whole world was smiling ecstatically at me every pain took flight. painting the landscape with breathtaking colors. His unlucky decision of leaving out some of the techniques Lahiri Mahasaya had passed on (not only some parts of the Higher Kriyas. sunk in the snow. One day. wholly dedicated to my Kriya Yoga. started to radiate all the colors of the spectrum of light. My memory will always hold it as the splendid symbol of my contact with the Omkar experience. I was in ecstasy! That distant sky was the mirror of my future years. Those who tried to get this absurdity across to him and prevent it. the prospect of retiring and living with a minimal income. He did not take into consideration how the human mind really works. By day. Disappointed by their defection. What he said made definite sense. through insatiable curiosity and the total rejection of any veto.linking each breath with a different order to effectively use these techniques . I also spent some days in a beautiful location equipped for winter sport. which I learned months later. the small village. he stubbornly focused even more on the essence of teaching and further simplifying of the First Kriya techniques. Attempts made by inexperienced students . For the first time. He had tried all Lahiri Mahasaya's techniques. as if my Kriya path had come to its fulfillment. This swami taught also a simplified form of Second Kriya. concluding that some of them were not essential. while others were rather too delicate and difficult to be learned. He really had all the necessary tools to attract the western world. I experienced a total contentment and ease. the sun set early. gone from my sight. maintaining this state for the rest of my days. The winter vacation ended and I got back to my job. I would think about what a precious jewel the Kriya technique was. with such a commitment to the Higher Kriyas also. they started to turn to the search for other teachers. found themselves facing a wall that would never break. Being aware that the original Kriya spirit had been lost in other schools. started to take real shape. but contributed to his isolation.

Yet the soil he plowed and was cultivating began to become sterile. being willing to show the same respect to possible collaborators and successors. Hundreds of scholars were enthusiastic about him. invited another teacher from India because they knew he was well-disposed to explain Kriya in its complete form. but they did have the curiosity for 'other secrets' of Kriya. This invitation was very strange and was perhaps made more out of desperation than that of conviction. It is true that a lot of people were contented with his Kriya. on a Kriya reviewing lesson. because those who had already met him in India knew that his spiritual realization was almost non-existent. Using the same fliers and changing only the Master's name and photo. his Indian-sage figure impressed the people. saving for him a place of crucial importance in the domain of Kriya. His commendable effort. which could be "good only for kindergarten children"! He closed his nostrils with his fingers and kept that position for some time. It took two years before he could succeeded in overcoming the problems with his visa and could finally land in Europe. Moreover. but they would never do something like organize a seminar for their teacher. it seemed he wanted to point out that the public was neither able to understand nor practice Kriya. I saw the sense of his isolation when. The result was that the beginners could only sense too big a distance to be bridged between them and the Master. Frankly speaking. He hinted in this way that he had mastered the breathless state. he told his public that the real Kriya Pranayama could only take place in a state of calm breath -. many of those people. all the marvelous subtleties by which he had enriched our Kriya. but the audience was not able to understand the deep meaning of what he was demonstrating. was not enough to prevent a shipwreck of his mission – at least here in Europe. the faithfulness of the many was not enough to avoid the worst end. The students staring at him were completely at a loss. when he arrived he found practically all the afore described teacher's disciples ready to welcome him as a God-sent messenger. Perhaps he had only met people who had not been able to adopt the discipline of a regular meditation practice and therefore did not gain any benefit. Those who already had a good mastering of Kriya had the final confirmation that what he had taught up to that moment was a simple introduction to Kriya and did not provide the key to obtain the experiential acme. they were ready to back his mission and treat him like a "divinity". 53 . I thought to myself how many disappointments must have convinced him to make such a peculiar demonstration. who formerly organized his seminars.contrary to the one marked by a long deep breath (which many knew was the characteristic of Lahiri Mahasaya's legacy). making this practice by far more beautiful. Many acknowledged this as a nasty comment to the fact that he was giving his explanations only out of kindness. one day. he must have been bizarre and peculiar to them.had written had been a smart strategic action which made him popular in the west.

1539 Kartarpur). 54 . wrote the great mystic Rumi. from It came into being the Light. an illiterate weaver." (Guru Nanak). Sound plays a vital role in all the mystical traditions. there are flutes. it is made and sustained by God's vibration. a sound not coming to the human ear from outside of the body but. the "silent music". the "sounding solitude". astral or causal worlds. It is. "Shabda". Teresa of Avila in her book "The Interior Castle" wrote: "It roars like many big rivers with waterfalls. where the soul is said to have its special seat. was taught to me by my first Kriya organization. "And his feet like unto fine brass. open to the vedantic and yogic influence. from within. Om sound is the "unstruck" sound (Anahata) . God is not the universe but the universe is part of Him. and a host of little birds seem to be whistling." "It is a music without strings which plays in the body. an extraordinary singer of the Divine. was a great mystic. There were deep similarities with the experiences and thought of Lahiri Mahasaya. the conscious and the unconscious. hear the sound of the flute and lo. "Nada Brahman". He gave a splendid description of his meeting with the "resounding rivers". I read again what. "In the beginning was the Word.not made as a result of two or more objects striking one another." While reading some extracts from Sufi literature. seek the sun that never sets". the Divine essence sustains this universe through the Om vibration. "Who is there playing upon a flute in the middle of the sky? The flute is being played in trikuti (eyebrows centre). Their teachings overlapped perfectly. rather. Whatever is manifest in the physical. There is no doubt that Saint John of the cross heard the typical rushing waters sound of the Om vibration. as if they burned in a furnace. I read something about Kabir (1398 Benares . the confluence of the Ganga and Jamuna. not in the ears. According to this teaching. "Seek the Sound that never ceases. since it is the bridge between the physical and the astral world." (Kabir). many years before. The sound emanates from the north! Cowherd girl. Wherever I look I find it. The sound of Om (Omkar) is referred to in literature also as "Pranava". It penetrates the inner and the outer and leads you away from illusion. but in the upper part of the head.1448/1494 Maghar) and Guru Nanak (1469 Nankana Sahib . Muslim of origin. John's Gospel). "The universe was manifested out of the Divine Sound. the form and the formless. I felt nostalgic of my first experiences with the "music of God"." (Shams-i Tabrizī). It is invisible. "The Sound is inside us. in fact. and his voice as the sound of many waters" (Revelation 1:15).Readings In that happy period of my life I tried tracking down in spiritual literature any movement or eminent figure who had a link with the subject: "Omkar". And the Word was with God and the Word was God" (St. animate or inanimate. Kabir. they are all hypnotized by the nada.

the strength of fighting all the forms of idolatry and the caste system. is the compass needle. in Guru Nanak's teaching. he shunned the religious rituals. orthodox modes of worship and from the priestly class. According to him this Shabda-Om dispels all doubts and difficulties. asceticism is to remain pure amidst impurities!" Traditionally. since He resided in the Saints!" Hinduism gave Kabir the concept of reincarnation and the law of Karma. rediscovered the reliability of his teachings. therefore the householder's life was considered an impediment and an entanglement. In the last century. I thought I could relate this to the Omkar teaching. which can be translated as "Word" (the word of the Master). Asceticism is not mere words. In contrast. not to cultivate any extreme approach to the spiritual discipline. but it is vital to keep it constantly in our consciousness as a living presence. That God has to be recognized inside of one's own soul . Kutastha is revealed to us. release from the bondage of the world was sought as the goal. He did not seem to base his teaching upon the authority of the holy writings. the spoken language of northern India. the world became the arena of spiritual endeavor. born in the silence of introspection. because it weakens the body and increases pride. or in having a walking staff. When I arrived. He made a deliberate attempt to cut off his disciples completely from all the ritualistic practices. I found the full meaning of the yogic practice in him. His disregard for Sanskrit suggested that his message was without reference to the existent Holy scriptures. Kabir taught not to renounce to life and become a hermit. The poems and sentences ascribed to him are expressed in a particularly effective language that remains permanently emblazoned in the reader's memory. While a full understanding of God is beyond human beings. God must be seen through "the inward 55 . Beloved Guru Nanak gave the same a fire fed by continuous care.conceived beyond name and form. and entered the heavens. the power of his poetry and made beautiful translations of his songs into English. nor in visiting burial places. dogmas and ignorance . the great mystic poet of Calcutta. He expressed his teachings in Punjabi. Rabindranath Tagore.this beautifully appears in Kabir's saying: "One day my mind flew as a bird in the sky. I saw that there was no God. the divine call present in each man's body. By following it. he says that there is a garden full of flowers in our body. and an endless beauty can be contemplated if the awareness is established into the ''thousand-petal Lotus''. Kabir conceived Islam and Hinduism as two roads converging toward a unique goal: he was always convinced of the possibility of overcoming the barriers that separate these two great religions. the Chakras. burning all the resistances. His teaching demanded an entirely new approach. He was bewitched by the beauty of creation and considered the panorama of nature as the loveliest scene for worship of the Divine. he described God as not wholly unknowable. Islam gave him the absolute monotheism . Regarding his concept of Shabda. He disapproved ascetic practices and taught instead to remain inwardly detached whilst living as a householder. Om. "Asceticism doesn't consist in ascetic robes.

Some combine the listening to the inner sounds with the attempt to taste nectar (Amrit) by sticking the tongue to the roof of the mouth. in successive stages. with the same words that I received from my first Kriya organization! Surat means "soul.'s organization.. my Kriya organization and my first teacher after it (S. my deeper convictions. sought in the "heart": he emphasized the revelation of this to be achieved through meditation. and the Word was God. our attunement with Omkar. resting their elbows on the knees or using an arm prop. The "word" is the "Sound Current". Omkar is the final goal of Kriya and the unique essence which percolates through all its phases. the dynamic force of creative energy that was continuously being sent out from the Supreme Being at the dawn of the universe's manifestation throughout the ages. to the extent that one can interpret God as the Universe itself. This is a practical teaching of how to listen to the inner sound of Omkar -. I conceived the Kriya path as a process of refining. 10 It is also referred to as Sant Mat (Path of the Saints). they affirmed that this Shabda was the Word referred to in the Bible: "In the beginning was the Word. I could claim that. In some Kriya literature it was written that P. at the conclusion of all my readings. If this is true. some groups move Prana up and down the spine. had belonged to this movement. just as 10 The Sikh religion is founded on the teachings of Guru Nanak and nine successive Gurus. I was reading with shivers of surprise what had essentially been my life. and the Word was with God. Before listening to the sound and seeing the light. it is the fifth-largest organized religion in the world. I studied it enthusiastically because everything I read reminded me of the writings of P. was well known and was the Radhasoami faith.. considered a derivation of Sikhism. ephemeral wraps imposed by the human mind. The Om technique is practiced by Radhasoami groups covering their ears and eyes. A monotheistic religion having the Omkar Reality as the ''single God'' existed.! With the same words of P.eye". 56 . It is interesting that the key distinctive feature of Sikhism is a non-anthropomorphic concept of God. One has the impression he gave a unique meaning to the concept of monotheism. I had been part of a Radhasoami group without being aware of that. It was the same Omkar experience I had always heard about. either using the classic squatting was exactly the same teaching.Y. On calm reflection. Kriya Yoga is the faith of Kabir and Guru Nanak: a monotheistic religion where the ''single God'' is substituted by Omkar! All the other names given to the Last Reality (also used by Lahiri Mahasaya in his diaries) are entirely useless words. In his teachings there are hints on the possibility of listening to an ineffable internal melody (Omkar) and to taste the nectar (Amrit)." Shabda means "word". as a matter of fact." (John 1:1) The Sound vibration. the "Audible Life Stream" or the "Essence of the Absolute Supreme Being".H. could be listened to through Surat Shabda Yoga.) had given me light and sound initiation.Y. I had practiced a couple of techniques (the good techniques of Hong So and Om) which embodied both the principles of Radhasoami and of Kriya Yoga. then for all intents and purposes.Y. molding all things animate and inanimate.

I ran through pages where the role of the Guru was extolled. Kriya was divided into six levels which were six progressive steps of tuning in to the Omkar dimension as sound. In the Radhasoami literature. the concept of Guru-Parampara is emphasized. Their dialog summarizes the ideal relationship between Guru and disciple. in their youth belonged to a Radhasoami group and perhaps. the same theory was given in some particular (perhaps nonorthodox) Radhasoami literature. plus some additional Chakras were identified in the brain! How many times I wondered about the origin of certain variations of Kriya! Now I have no doubts that some disciples of Lahiri Mahasaya. There is no doubt that the concept of Guru has a special place in Indian thought. In the frontal part of this region there is the pituitary gland (hypophysis). Now. is a dialog between God in the form of Krishna and the warrior prince Arjuna. The whole explanation was accompanied by a helpful sketch. A formal recognition of this fact includes the Gurudakshina. Through its inner Light one comes to "know God".teacher) activates this Shabda which becomes the inner Satguru stationed at the third eye of the disciple. A disciple could never break off the sacred connection with the Guru under any circumstances. 57 . An emission of light. the Bhagavad Gita. behind it we have the pineal gland: the seats of the sixth and of the seventh Chakras respectively. added to Kriya some elements of theory and practice which belong to Radhasoami thinking. a valuable sign of gratitude to his Guru. which had the psychological effect to eliminate all uncertainties on the validity and universality of this theory. without even being fully aware of this. He explained that this melting of the last trace of our ego in the Omkar ocean would take place in the hollow cavity of the brain called "the cave of Brahma". Emphasis was given to the role of the pineal gland. since the Guru had been instrumental in leading him to God. In this way. would happen between the two "poles" and shed light in that area. first he would pay respect to the Guru. It was explained that during initiation.H. the transmission of mystical power (Diksha) happens just like the Guru were physically present. I remember that in S. In Radhasoami thinking this relationship is elaborated in great detail -. A Guru takes on himself part of the karma of the disciple.exactly in the same way I heard from my Kriya organization. which is given to the authorized representative leading the structured initiation ceremony. light and swinging sensation. The spiritual power of a Guru is transmitted after his Mahasamadhi by an uninterrupted series of authorized representatives.Radhasoami groups do. similar to a voltaic arc. Guru . appears to them at the moment of death in order to introduce them to God. One of the main Hindu texts. This process was described as a "mystic union".'s conception. This role is so important that there is a saying that if the devotee were presented to the Guru and God. the living Satguru (Sat true.

Practicing seriously this new routine. yet left me a bit perplexed. Before receiving instruction from this school. It was originated by an Indian personage who claimed he was a direct disciple of Babaji. The first level didn't actually disappoint me. He gave his wife the role to pontificate about many topics (macrobiotics. I didn't notice that in the book there was not even a hint to techniques like Talabya Kriya. Although some illustrations in the book gave me the impression of reading a fairy book for children. In this school the main technique was called Kriya Kundalini Pranayama. Changing every day the technique of meditation (there were seven different techniques.H. was a real delight. how to see aura. This was an atrocious delusion. Unfortunately we had to repeat this course two or three times in order to receive the complete set of the Chakra Mantras. Omkar Pranayama. beyond my the worse expectations.Second Teacher outside the Organization During a trip in France.'s teaching. Kriya Hatha Yoga. Ram. how to make Ayurveda diagnosis and other amenities).. This subject was more congenial to me than that strange form of Dhyana Kriya. a meditation which had nothing to do with spine. There were no Higher 58 . The most annoying thing was that once you had completed 16 Kriya breaths. I found a strange book on Babaji's Kriya Yoga. giving rise to nothing substantial. This school gave three levels of Kriya easy to obtain in about three years if you showed enough commitment. Chakras etc. Kriya Kundalini Pranayama seemed a beautiful technique. which is fundamental for Lahiri. The teacher was obsessed by the precept of not holding one's breath: in this way the technique of Yoni Mudra. was considered dangerous and thus banned... I came in contact with a Kriya school which was standing totally apart from all the others. I was confident. mixing what I had learned from the organization with S. whose final part (concentration on the Chakras). I had conceived a very sweet routine. The odd thing was that the teacher gave the impression of being lost in the New Age dimension and didn't realize of how badly his teaching was organized. The central point of his Second Level was initiation into Mantras. He made a fool of himself by explaining the technique of "dispersing the clouds": fixing a cloud in the sky with the purpose of dissolving it! I endured everything since I put all my hope in the third level. Navi Kriya. the process you had put in motion had to be suddenly relinquished and you had to practice Dhyana Kriya. one for each different day of the week) I had the heavy sensation of living a chaotic period of my life. extending its sphere of action on all the aspects of human life. there grew within me a marked nostalgia for what I had relinquished. Kriya Dhyana Yoga. Vam. The idea of having found a source from which to learn everything about Kriya. Kriya Mantra Yoga rotated around that breathing technique.. The Bija Mantras of the Chakras were similar but not exactly identical to the classic ones: Lam. Thokar. Kechari Mudra.. excited me tremendously.

11 three fairly common techniques of visualization.for example. being taught those techniques again. they particularly loved an atmosphere. should happen to those who give their all to apply Kriya integrally). a way of behaving. At first. The Samadhi techniques. characterized by specific sensations that they would cultivate with care and.the way an explorer deals 11 Actually more idiotic than Hong So technique since. given at the conclusion of that enervating and boring course. In that period I was very happy: I fell in love with an Indian bhajan and I sang it within of me the whole blessed day. I think that the reader doesn't need other data to understand how. rather I really had the impression of eating that music since after some days of singing I realized I had exhausted it and was looking for another song to plunge into as if it were the only one worthy of singing. within a short time. somehow disguised and passed off as Samadhi techniques. emotions and money in this course. Coming across different groups of people who practiced Kriya I had the feeling of meeting my vast family.. did very beautiful jobs and I dreamed to live like them forever. He believed that Lahiri Mahasaya had not practiced with total commitment all the teachings he received from Babaji. we realized that since Lahiri Mahasaya did not obtain immortality (as. with whom they have a vibratory connection.. Swimming in my state of elation. I didn't understand anything of other people and it seemed to me that they lived a very beautiful life. our teacher was dismissive of him.rather the explanation you find in the books is far more better laid down. Astounded. it was replaced by: "Om Babaji". For many of us who had yearlong experience with the preliminary-toKriya techniques offered by the organization and who had invested our time. I am reminded of this period of my life when I listen to the tape recordings of some devotional chants which I had bought at that time.Kriyas but common Yoga. therefore he . while Hong So is a universal Mantra whose syllables were specifically chosen for their power of calming the breath. For me it had much the nature of food. died. I abandoned this teacher. above all. was actually a cold shower. Bound to a very oriental lifestyle. Intermezzo: New-Age-Polluted Kriya Yoga The mentality developed following such a school led me to meet persons and groups where Kriya Yoga was polluted with "New-Age" themes. 59 . in his opinion. I learned to relate to each of them . with innocent frenzies. of a genre you can find in all books -. to those who would host me whenever a seminar was held in a distant city . he was reticent and did not seem glad of our interest in the matter. were a new reading of Hong So technique. the classic instruction of continuous awareness during the day and a variation of the same Om technique I had once received from my organization. Some of us dared to ask the teacher's opinion about Lahiri Mahasaya's Kriya. then he took courage and shared his views.

decorations. it came out so spontaneously. waiting for any eccentric revelation. I met people whose enthusiasm toward Kriya was very moderate. To clean away their internal conflicts. Conflicts and polemics exploded whether some teacher who once had been some illustrious Guru's right-hand man. We had the tendency of stocking up on techniques like food for a famine. Research on alternative medicines. would take part in other initiations and would reciprocate the favor. had then become independent by their own choice or because the latter disowned them. At times I would react to their oddness ironically. seemed to intensify their experience of Kriya.from which I would eventually have to break loose. In their meditation room. the coveted news with other students who. Generally speaking. some fruit and a donation was required too -. Stressing the cathartic potential of oriental meditative practices. I received various initiations by different teachers. and it seemed they practiced the few techniques they knew as if making a sacrifice to atone for the "guilt" of existence. Every one devotionally took this pledge and. In this new ambiance. one group of kriyabans was under 60 . as soon as the meeting was over. the explanations were always quick and shallow. they shared. crystal therapy. They worked for some time. many focused their attention only on secondary aspects of the mystical path and had lost sight of their goal. Inside the group tied to my first organization. I met a lot of people who were yet "too passionate" for Kriya and anything which had to do with personal development. that it was confining myself to what would soon become a "cage" from which I would sooner or later feel an unbearable suffocation . making up my mind about abandoning all other practices for the one I had just received.with unknown animals.usually a precise sum of money was set. in turn. This habit created some conflicts in us. by cell-phone. Bringing flowers was recommended. were expensive distractions to be added to Kriya. With regard to Kriya proper. I would finish all those initiations repeating to myself how satisfied I was. group therapies directed by eccentric individuals devoid of academic formation. Although I felt that atmosphere to be extraneous to me. afterwards they were forsaken. after attending many different rituals. Just to give an example. it was something I just could not help. at almost all those initiation seminars a solemn pledge of secrecy was the password to be accepted. they were satisfied by the established beautiful atmosphere. I was struck by the tendency to spend lots of money on training workshops focused on strange therapeutic methods like aromatherapy. To many among us. color therapy… This harmless distractions aroused great enthusiasm. There existed no other reality to be sought. those initiations were a true vice. filled with multicolored posters and cushions. crystals and other objects. I shunned the awareness that the new initiation had only added something insignificant to that which I already knew. I accepted it as an inevitable drawback to succeed in acquiring the information I searched for with so much passion. a destructive criticism was often raised against information coming from other sources.

These group participants became enthusiastic of "expensive techniques" shared over the weekend. in accordance with the situation.and perhaps this is the most important thing -.with a pendulum in his hand -. overcoming inner resistances. Some were lured to invest in expensive seminars where their energy channels would be opened and they would learn the secret of how to make use of the Universal Energy.that my criterion to judge the excellence of a new technique of meditation (or of some confuse mix of new age cathartic methods of self healing) by a vague sense of well-being perceived during the practice itself meant having made my ego the compass needle of my spiritual journey. From the legal point of view... His methods gave great importance to revealing one's childhood traumas in group discussions.was able to diagnose everything. This process. I began to realize that I was going adrift -.. It seemed – the idea did not appear so bad . greater expansion of consciousness than could ever be achieved via other means. after having repeatedly rung the bell. in turn. this alternative psychotherapy had to be camouflaged as a cultural or religious activity. the guest was sitting neglected on the doormat… I realized also -. sometimes with acute suffering. This colossal waste of time had been like preparing one's house for a distinguished guest. Sitting on the ground in a circle. as well as to suggest remedies. delighted by entranced awareness of the different comforts their house allows . The idea to keep this virtuous circle in motion fascinated them without limit. becoming more intense could give decisive help in the most delicate phases in the process of full-body cleaning.. man had evolved and should employ faster tools. in expensive residences.that this process of removing the internal blocks could help improve the energy flow inside the body during Kriya. assumed the role of the psychotherapist. from the slightest indispositions to the most serious illnesses. It had never entered my mind this dangerous and potentially destructive mania to explore unceasingly the mysteries inherent to the "human potential". All this cost a lot. endlessly polishing and decorating it. in no small part because the seminars were not given nearby but abroad. As for me. and were effectively seduced by the temptation of applying faster means. it was like I had been hypnotized.meanwhile. There were also those who tried to find. they formed work groups and. the alternative physician who -. the spiritual teacher. the listening to the Om sound. which in 20 minutes a day would result in the regeneration of their DNA. experiences that they had never told before.losing some essential attainments like the breathless state. 61 . I had forgotten everything. They were all right up to 50 years ago..the influence of a cunning fellow who. their past lives in order to revive and then understand the deeper traumas. A few were ensnared by the claim that the classical meditative practices the sober methods adopted through the ages by the mystics of various religions were no longer valid for our time. unfortunately some strayed further away from Kriya up to the point of losing it entirely.. shared. through hypnotic regression. but with the new era. final liberation etc.

At the same time. bitterness or formality. a lady. the same. what appears as a long journey will become like a stroll". They gave the impression of being honest researchers and always guaranteed that no nonsense would ever slip out of their practiced with the energy present in the body.Y. blinded us. He read and re-read through those texts several times trying to figure them out. This was strongly contrasting with the personality expected of people who called themselves "spiritual guides". effort and money. improvisation and. This could only happen as long as they had kept it a total secret without establishing any contact with other teachers. I was surprised when one of them. their disappointment for all the things they had not been able to learn started to emerge. Now.she added -. We agreed that our teachers were mostly mediocre persons. even of mental instability. We were not able to find even one of them who would prove to possess that mastery of Kriya which is so crucial in such a delicate pedagogic work as they were attempting to do. Later on. They were always generous toward me and respectful of my personality.When I dared to call into question the validity of the whole thing. rebuked that there was no reason to be perplexed about those practices.. We were subjugated by the myth that Kriya is to be received from an "authorized" teacher. in one case. "We are expected to answer in a positive way. no matter if it cost them a great deal of time. sometimes impolite and unethical. showed on their face the excitement for having seen such an extraordinary land.Y. without having tried them. How was it possible that we kept enduring these situations? The fact that they claimed they were authorized to initiate. Never did they try to force something into my mind. if this energy is recharged by the flow of the Universal Energy. beyond simple exhibitionism. I learned to listen to them respectfully and silently whenever they would correct some of my fancy interpretations of Kriya Yoga. coming back from India. quoted by heart some lines from a work by P. passionately sharing everything they had learned. Some friends of ours.otherwise we could have … to die and be born again just to live those experiences that we are now shunning!" "The Kriya technique -. feeling annoyed. I had different occasions to meet and to approach more intimately those who organized these meetings. I felt that those researchers were my real family. prophetic lines which had once been the source of so many uncertainties. he really strained in studying those texts. They would comment: "It is our Karma that is giving us the best of all the opportunities to grow in all the planes". In this manner. Our relationship was based on real affection and it never came to disagreement. A couple happened to meet a boaster assuring them he knew Kriya Yoga and could initiate them. They knew little about Kriya Yoga and they taught it in an even more superficial way.'s school that supported our deferential and tolerant attitude toward people whom were actually abusing our trust and confidence. It is strange to think that it was this deep rooted suggestion received from P. Some trifling episodes confirmed our first impression of instability. the boaster made sure that they would not realize that it was not Kriya Yoga they 62 . We don't have to stay jammed against this beneficial current -.

This was one of the master's nephews. negative response. At the end of his explanations. The leader of the Ashram was away. this is something he did not have the chance to do. a man with a great academic background and with a deep knowledge of Kriya. In my opinion. However. Each technique was preceded by a theoretic introduction with quotations from ancient 63 .. you surely must be the only one still practicing it!". overcoming their inner opposition. because his answer resulted in a sarcastically sour. in other words: "Definitely not. Unfortunately. not a single hint about how to obtain Kechari Mudra. Kriya Yoga was not practiced any longer.were being taught. nothing on Thokar either. He told me that in Benares. began their discussion with trivialities like asking some information on Indian habits. there was nothing contained in that book that could remove all my doubts. and my friend received the initiation into Kriya Yoga from one of his disciples. I was taken aback when he told me "something bizarre". it was nothing more than the mere repetition of a Mantra! What made me feel sorry about it was not so much the great advantage gained by those braggers (the Gurudakshina -donation -. My friend.they received meant a real fortune at my friends' expense) as for our friends missing the opportunity of learning Kriya from other sources. in other places. a serious disease killed him. I tried to understand what had happened. At the end of his trip. then almost at the end of the interview – he must have suddenly remembered he was in Lahiri Mahasaya's house – he asked if any of the disciples of Lahiri were still practicing Kriya. On the contrary. I can remember a very complicated technique based on the visualization of the Chakras like they are described in Tantric texts. and probably throughout rest of India. an Ashram's address where he had planned to go. I dare say it is not practiced throughout the whole Indian peninsula. Another friend of mine remained for some days at an Ashram in the hope he might receive initiation into Kriya Yoga. His demeanor must have frozen the eminent listener. but there were many more details. visibly content. I kept enough control not to interrupt or to challenge him. A certain blow came for him one month later: he came to know that a man from his same town had recently been initiated into Kriya Yoga from the very personage he had met in Benares. I will always be grateful to this friend for all the things that he shared with me concerning his spiritual path. my friend's eyes were looking at me surprisingly. I had this technique explained to me as well. In spite of our huge character difference. In the end. as he usually did. then by posing him apparently incidental questions. he acquired a large volume summarizing the techniques. the techniques did not differ that much from those I already knew. he showed me that book. but my friend was not able to learn anything from him. He was so irritated by that news that he planned to go back to India to raise a protest to that Kriya Acharya. I could realize this only when. it is not practiced any longer. Something different happened to a friend of mine who met a descendant of Lahiri Mahasaya. I did not pry into it. Rather.. he did not realize how foolish his discussion had been with that noble person. I am still not sure whether he was hoping to convince me or whether he was just absorbed in bitter frustration.

64 . to have a note saying that those teachings came directly from Babaji? Simple .. he appeared to be trying to guide me away from such a reality. reflecting another classic Indian habit. From certain answers to people's questions.I was not in the best mood. but a journey beyond the mind. Of course. In the last part of the book a precise gradual routine was given. I simply had to convince myself that Babaji had but made a synthesis of Tantrism to obtain His Kriya Yoga. who was going to explain Kriya in its complete form . I knew I was going to reckon with a radically new approach. then. I hoped. I did not even dream about putting other principles in place as a foundation for my spiritual path. He discussed how he had found those techniques in some tantric texts which he had translated. " Babaji's Kriya had Tantric origins". somehow. The teacher. Third Teacher outside the Organization When the moment came to meet the long awaited teacher from India . I would have liked to yield to the illusion that my quest had finally ended. Lahiri Mahasaya's mythical Guru. coming to know about those "supplementary notes". it probably just meant that … Kechari was not really so important! With a bit of good will and application I could have closed the circle. I was afraid that this could upset the simple and adequately profitable routine into which I had settled. This is why I approached my new teacher with the idea of rejecting him is the case with the majority of Indian masters. since those notes contained what I was asking for. From some clues. into an uncontaminated territory. He clearly communicated to us that the reason for his tour to the West was to reestablish the original teachings. S.the one. he then made an accurate selection from them to form a coherent system which constituted his system of Kriya. there was a note guaranteeing that all the mentioned techniques constituted Kriya Yoga as taught by Babaji. He then tried to defend his disciples' work stating that after all …. he had the book written by his disciples. never mind. I came to know that he knew my former teacher and was aware of his choice not to teach the whole body of the Kriya techniques. into which my previous teacher had immersed me in a passionate way. I met him in a Yoga center where he had been invited by some disciples.books and an illustration which eliminated any possible doubt. Chance made me listen to the recording of a conference of the author Swami S. How was it possible. Since that material was very interesting. The synthesis of his introductory speech was that Kriya didn't mean to inflate the mind and the ego moving toward a hypothetical superior mind. It was impudent to think that Thokar could be considered no more than a variation of the Jalandhara Bandha! If the instructions for Kechari Mudra were not there. This was enough to overcome my initial wariness. never checked that material – he was taken aback later on. could be neither left aside nor forgotten. they had the brilliant idea of making it more interesting by hinting that the techniques were derived from the mythical Babaji. The magical realm of Omkar.

One day. Then all this ceased and my Kriya flew high. he would always sense. I remember how I photocopied many pages of the book. a sudden joy would expand in my chest and rise to my eyes to the point that I could barely hold back my tears. only this could keep back the joy clutching my being. unusually synthetic. He was hottempered. It consists in activating the Microcosmic Orbit. For some days I experienced a feeling of "dizziness" and my mental faculties seemed to be fogged up.formally correct . cut out the most important pieces. The similarity with Kriya Yoga was really impressive. Navi Kriya and Internal Alchemy While trying to explore the meaning of Navi Kriya I discovered the importance of studying the Taoist Internal Alchemy. Awareness and energy (Qi) are raised during inhalation along the Governor channel at the back of the spine and let flow down along the 65 . even if they were legitimate. How come my first school didn't teach such a simple technique like Talabya Kriya. a veiled opposition . My attention was considerably stirred up. The first stage is the basis of the whole process. My first reference book was: Taoist Yoga: Alchemy and Immortality by Charles Luk& Lu Kuan. The best thing was to witness an increase of the Omkar experience. his instructions on Pranayama . in part. put them in order and glued them on four sheets of paper highlighting the four phases of Taoist Internal Alchemy. The technical explanation was reasonably clear but. He exploded with rage whenever he was addressed questions. I indulgently observed some inadequacies in his behavior which shocked other students. When I went out for a walk. using my fingers to push the base of the tongue inward. preferring to endure endless polemics and speculations that continue up to our present day? I wrote my reasons to the organization and left it forever. I had some discomfort owing to an increase in salivation and a sense of irritation. no matter what he said. For instance. I was overjoyed because I felt I had finally found the First Kriya complete set of intention of challenging his authority.During the following initiation seminar. I would try to direct my feeling toward them in order to turn my paralyzing joy into aesthetic rapture. Looking at the distant mountains or at other details of the landscape. only this could hide it. Kechari Mudra After three months of Talabya Kriya I achieved Kechari. if I met somebody and stopped to listen to him. underneath the words.could be understood only by those who had already been practicing Kriya Yoga for a long time. But I focused all my attention on the learning his form of Kriya and ignore his patent faults. its tip remain "trapped" in the nasal pharynx.

In the fourth stage the energy reaches the region between the eyebrows and a spontaneous phenomenon of circulation of energy in the body. There were two key ideas that excited my interest in particular. mixed together. flute with no holes. taught within an Indian context.Functional channel during exhalation. I studied every title I could find on the subject (Taoism included). Two to One". In the second stage the energy stored in the head is conveyed into the Dantian.. but this is another problem. life in general and also the joy felt beholding a work of art. Let us see what this means. These energies are blended. and that which gives us the strength and the determination to fight the battle of life and to achieve all the things we need (unfortunately. Through Kriya Pranayama the sexual energy turns into pure love and this in spiritual aspiration: this event implies a permanent healing action upon all one's personality. In the third stage. The three are Jing (sexual energy).which we have received from different Indian sources. My enthusiastic response derived from the intuition that Kriya Yoga and Taoist Internal Alchemy shared a common foundation and by studying the latter. This procedure is very similar to Kriya Pranayama. Sexual energy is the fuel of the spiritual energy Very interesting to understand the vital action of Kriya Pranayama is what Internal Alchemy explains about the three energies: Jing (sexual energy). This channel runs like a tube from the perineum to the Fontanelle through the center of the body. Qi (love energy) and Shen (spiritual energy).!). some weird explanation about Kriya Pranayama and Kriya in general -.. behind the navel. From the Dantian it ascends spontaneously into the heart region. It is not a weird idea that the mythical Babaji was/is one of the "immortals" of the Taoist tradition. Qi (love energy) and Shen (spiritual energy). Prana is increased in the thrusting channel. Kriya Pranayama sets one person free from all bondages. The energy of love is a deep feeling toward another person. in the lower abdomen.) bring back to our mind.. a. (the Macrocosmic Orbit) happens. The first aim of activating the Microcosmic Orbit is to create harmony among them and thus exert a permanent healing action upon the personality. The purpose of this action is "to bring Three to Two. It is the fuel of fair-minded actions born out of 66 . The description of this stage exemplify clearly the principle of Navi Kriya. in the front of the spine. I could understand more clearly the working of some Kriya techniques. with surprising similarity. Kriya Yoga turns out to be a discipline which can be described through the symbols of two different cultures. a split at one's birth.. another reason why we fight is to achieve things which are superfluous to our living. They were originated by a fracture. living creatures. Sexual energy is not only what this name implies but also the agent that makes us rejoice in the sensory perceptions. Various metaphors used to explain its mechanism (bagpipe turned upside-down. The idea comes that Kriya Yoga is the Taoist Internal Alchemy. Kriya Pranayama creates harmony among them and this is not clearly described in Kriya Yoga books.

In my own small way.inner. where the vast prophetic visions may manifest. as a beatific. especially if they don't practice Kechari Mudra .during the initial deep breaths of their Kriya Pranayama. on the flow of Prana coming down from the top of the brain. The spiritual path does not end with a flight out of the body toward the rarefied dimensions of the Spirit. The Macrocosmic Orbit discloses undreamed of sceneries. and concentrate. their division being originated at our birth and reinforced by education and social living. This happens in a state called "prenatal breathing" which is a movement of internal energy that gives perceptions similar to those obtained through the Microcosmic Orbit but is now experienced in the breathless state (Kevala Kumbhaka). the seeker obtains knowledge about the different organs of the body and their location". the determination not to succumb to any obstacle.and sexuality is repressed as unholy. he reacted annoyed claiming that Navi Kriya was pure Yoga and was quoted by Patanjali too. This great energy of love will gradually turn into pure aspiration for the spiritual goal. During Kriya Pranayama. Patanjali (Sutra III/29) simply states: "nābhicakre kāyavyūhajñānamḥ" which is translated: "by concentration on the navel. It trickles down into the body and feeds every cell. It appears as an experience of perfect Beauty. develop sexual thoughts .it is not unusual they become sexually aroused. This event should not result in disappointment and loss of self-esteem! It is comfortable to be reassured that this is a normal phenomenon. It has been explained that these energies derive from one unique realty. love and spiritual) are mixed harmoniously. the sexual thoughts (which seem to be reinforced) will turn into love thoughts. it is then raised into the head where it mixes with the energy of the Spirit. When I had enough confidence to communicate my discovery to my third teacher. unimpeded toward Spirit. I saw that this Sutra had nothing to do with 67 . healing rain restoring life in the body. This refined experience makes the spiritual path complete: the Divine is infused into our body. The energy of love acquires strength. each part of the body. the division between matter and spirit . noble instincts and ethical laws. breath after breath. Some kriyabans. The Macrocosmic Orbit embodies the perfection of Kriya Pranayama When the three energies (sexual. Now. in order that this happens. The spiritual energy vibrates during the highest peaks of aesthetic contemplation. Any split in our personality will disappear: our many-sided life begins to flow naturally. rather to cultivate as a virtue. We know that this point is the main cause of nerve-wracking conflicts in spiritually minded people. They should assume Kechari Mudra. either proper or a simplified form of it. the energy has to come up to the head and then flow down into the body passing through the tongue. b. passing through the tip of the tongue into the throat and into the body. they create the elixir of immortality. during exhalation. They will immediately experience how sexual thoughts disappear and become pure love. Many religious paths teach to maintain.

In his opinion. In our body that point is the Dan Tian. It was of great help to read some articles and essays written by Michael Winn. I put my heart and my soul into a systematic study of them.Navi Kriya's aim. in the many years of his own practice..he is confident that somebody will take his refinements and improve on them.. Actually. The author maintains that these are pretexts. passionate talks with people who had studied and followed that path for decades. a path of "ascent". According to him no tradition respects the whole mystery of human nature as deeply as the Taoist Internal Alchemy. it is substantially a "fire" path. He reports that. until one settles in the still point of no movement. in the Taoist Internal Alchemy one utilizes that state to reach the body. nurture and transform it. He noticed that. although Kriya Yoga has many parallels with the Taoist Internal Alchemy. he has evolved toward simplicity -. with infinite possibilities 68 . No human being should be denied the opportunity of achieving true spiritual independence! The Teaching of Krishnamurti Since the works of Sri Krishnamurti (Krishnaji for those who loved him) were the source from which my third teacher drew to full hands for his discourses about the damages caused by the vices of the human mind. This researcher studied Kundalini Yoga in the late 70's and Kriya Yoga afterwards with a renowned teacher. then he has the right to learn it without groveling at anyone's feet. the doorway to reach the prenatal state of blissful breathlessness. The first line I read was: ". I was surprised to learn that the annoying problem of secrecy concerns also the Taoist Internal Alchemy. Michael Winn was wholly devoted to Taoist Internal Alchemy and Qigong (Chi Kung). oral or written teachings may become traps: only the living experience promotes the true self-inquiry which leads to Self realization. try them with a lot of respect and take also the courage to solve the problems that might arise alone.. thought is cunning. Among the very interesting information that I found in his writings. He took the binding appointment of teaching only from direct personal experience. not sincere and not sufficiently thought over. As usual it was claimed that secrecy was meant to protect the purity of the lineage and prevent corruption by selfish people who might abuse the spiritual power gained. We just imitate them". Michael Winn's noble definitive position is that if one feels spiritually attracted to some particular teaching and feels worthy to receive it. I had long. a taoist said to him: "We don't know why the ancients kept it so secret. One should take the teachings received by the tradition into consideration. One who wants to follow the spiritual path could avoid a wide range of problems by listening to the practical wisdom it embodies. But any energy movement upward has to be balanced by a movement downward. He observed that while through Kundalini Yoga one is just trying to climb up to the crown of their head to experience there divine ecstasy..

preventing me from enjoying what I already had. I saw it was time to put a definitive end to my relationship with the New Age world." The more I read Krishnaji. The obsession for finding the techniques of the "Original Kriya" didn't emanate from a heightened form of spirituality but was no different to the desire for material things. The effort to create mental silence brought me at the very beginning of my spiritual the "Beauty of my own making..she wanted to teach me "to live with the heart". the concept that entered my mind was that Kriya Yoga (Krishnaji referred in general to "meditation") leads to a territory that cannot be grasped by reasonings. Many mistakes had to be conceived. it was with this poor attitude that. the more I felt I had recently crossed a hell. draining me of the flow of genuine aspiration toward the Divine. How right was Krishnaji when he said: "life begins where thought ends. you have to take the journey alone. to break any dependence toward my third teacher. I remember how I decided to conquer the tendency to day-dream and jump from one memory to another during my idle moments. but without a single thought in my mind. avoiding those people who seemed irremediably lost in Krishnaji would say -. a vice.of self-deception. carry out and digested. by the many fantasies of the human mind. Undoubtedly she thought I was cold-hearted. giving moments of pleasure but being the primary cause of many misery. For the present moment." How true! The odd thing was that Krishnaji's thought contained the crucial and conclusive boost that would assist me. But I 69 . Krishnamurti said what was then difficult to fully agree with: "What is the need of a Guru? [. The time was not mature yet to actualize his words: fear held me back. Since years she was putting stress on me criticizing my rationality and excessive commitment to Kriya Yoga. I knew perfectly that unbridled thought was a real addiction. and impoverished me. A pranotherapeut got into the habit of coming unrequested into my life to rob me of my time and peace -. How difficult it was! But it was not impossible. after many years of controversial but loyal discipleship. He hinted at something immense: a stream of truth that has no beginning and no end.. It was to discipline myself that I considered studying the art of Pranayama and discovered Kriya Yoga. of finding the time to contemplate again Beauty. on pseudo spiritual literature which was actually trash. I was living my hectic search. It was distracting.] You have to walk by yourself. I studied many books by this author but I was literally overcome by the beauty of The only revolution. Walking with this attitude became pure and constant Bliss! During recent years Beauty was always around me but I didn't noticed it because I was lost in my mental constructions based on New Age fantasies. At that time. partially unaware. I felt undoubtedly they expressed a deep truth but my logic suggested peremptorily: "This is a sophism: even Krishnaji acted as a Guru and acts upon me just now through his writings". and on that journey you have to be your own teacher and pupil. I walked in the country looking at all things with my senses fully awake. I was not able to see that Beauty for I was lost -. of returning to simplicity. Actually." I had a great necessity of recreating silence around me." While I was reading these lines.

During those days. Furthermore. Later. It shows his skill in communicating complicated abstract concepts when he affirms that the whole course of Kriya is a great adventure beginning with a dynamic Prana and ending with a static Prana. 70 . I find rather a mind with an almost maniacal tendency to interpret each thing in the light of Kriya. his disciple P. One feels a thrill of delight by reading sentences which have light in themselves: "Kutastha is God. During summer I used to have this book with me in the countryside. I dare not say they are adulterated but I think that their value . I looked at the photograph of Lahiri Mahasaya on the front cover. Helped by his main disciple Ashoke Kumar Chatterjee. These books were little known for a long time. Remarkable is the great importance he gave to Pranayama. his figure. Puran Purush is based on Lahiri Mahasaya's diaries. it is possible to hypothesize that. hoping to find there some useful information. he explained the meaning of the sacred texts. the core of Kriya may be reached as fast as an arrow. forgot completely the starting point and. he decided to make a selection of the main thoughts which might be useful to those who practiced Kriya. entranced. as they were written in Bengali. where awareness is set upon the head. he was the symbol of the perfection I yearned after. What he said on that occasion could have been taken as a specific comment to that text.from an exegetic point of view . reading the verses of those texts. Satya Charan Lahiri (1902-1978). It was with my all heart that I gave her the right to swim in her mental swamps and estranged forever myself from her presence. talked extensively and freely about the subtleties of Kriya. I would raise my eyes to the distant mountaintops and repeat inside of me "At long last…!". It seems to me almost impossible that they came really from Lahiri Mahasaya: I don't find the same practical wisdom and tremendous realization expressed in his diaries. it is possible that. his eyebrows raised like in the Shambhavi Mudra. In these commentaries. yet they were disappointed. as if centuries before. They were later translated into English. after reading a part of it. thanks to one of Lahiri Mahasaya's nephews. We are not able to extract anything useful from them. was a sun in my heart. he is the supreme Brahma". I also read the commentaries on some sacred writings attributed to Lahiri Mahasaya.had a compassionate heart suffering of losing my time with her. Although it does not seem to respect a logical order in the topics and contains an endless number of repetitions and rhetorical almost null. the editor had them completed with parts of his own comprehension. with that blissful smile. I think that studying it can help more than any other books to understand Lahiri Mahasaya's personality -. who knows what a state of bliss he was in while being photographed! I saw some horizontal lines on his forehead. According to my discernment. Bhattacharya printed these interpretations. Lahiri Mahasaya was transported from the force of his insight. the authors of those spiritual works knew exactly one by one all the Kriya techniques. a slight tension of his chin seemed to reveal he was practicing Kechari Mudra. A lot of people studied that material with enthusiasm. It came out in Bengali (then in French and in English). in order to publish those hard-to-understand notes. many times.thus. In that period I read also Puran Purush by Ashoke Kumar Chatterjee). who had material access to those diaries. Thokar and Yoni Mudra.

If a certain variation of a Kriya technique was redundant or ineffective. What remained was just the simplest logical translation of Lahiri Mahasaya's words into practice. after 60 repetitions of Pranayama. From a certain moment onwards. releasing it from many inner obstacles. I couldn't understand how I dwelt now in the most complete tranquility having practiced hundreds of such breaths. while once.something that could not be but that way. putting the usual routine aside and using only one technique. The period in which I plunged head-first into the incremental routine of Thokar was really a magic one: I would lie if I do not affirm that I have an endless nostalgia for those days. often an invincible drowsiness overpowered all my best efforts. I developed so much nervousness that I couldn't remain sitting. I was more keen 71 . No help came from changing the position of the legs. I started this routine at the beginning of March on a near perfect day under a flawless blue sky. could be received from what seemed to be a voyage into the unconscious world of dreams. definite. Many times I wondered what benefit. Kriya Pranayama and to all the Higher Kriyas. it would fall away by itself. These routines soon revealed their great heuristic value. It consists in once a week. The essential core of each technique. This procedure can be applied to each Kriya technique. When in the late afternoon the practice neared the end. the drowsiness changed into an extraordinary condition of relaxation. This is the most remunerative Kriya praxis because it leads to the mastery (unimaginable with any other scheme of practice) of the techniques which are utilized for such procedure. if any. Yet I didn't abandon my project and went on increasing the length of my sessions. it has also a positive effect on one's personality. inevitable . During the long sessions of the incremental routines of Navi Kriya and of Kriya Pranayama. changing neither their order of practice nor the number of their repetitions. The Mantra's syllables. whose number of repetitions is gradually increased up to a certain amount that the tradition has handed down as optimal. or interrupting for a short pause the practice. in particular to Navi Kriya. which I would carefully place into each Chakra. When we think of the Kriya practice we imagine the classic unvarying scheme which consists in a daily practice of the same set of techniques. would warm me up.Higher Kriyas and Incremental Routines It was in that period that I became familiar with the concept of Incremental Routine which I immediately considered heaven-sent. I believe I had really overworked it by using too much this incomparable tool. especially by adopting Kechari Mudra. for a certain number of weeks (20 – 24 – 36 …). the way the sun warms up the land around. practicing Maha Mudra several times. deprived of any embellishment. An Incremental Routine is a particular feature of Lahiri Mahasaya's Kriya. appeared as something fixed. On the inner screen of my awareness was displaying a lot of images like dreamlike visions. where the crisp pure air invited me to practice outside in its beauty.

Talking. Meeting again and considering the actual situation we rejoiced together. at the end of his future Kriya initiation seminars. The introductory lecture to the Kriya (which was usually held the evening before initiation) and a big part of the seminar of initiation was devoted to a pure philosophical talk which didn't touch the bases of Kriya Yoga but was a summing up of Krishnamurti's strong points. One was like a cascade of light! So unexpected was it! A part of my mind went on repeating: "A human being has never been granted so much joy!" All went on in the best of ways. being uncomfortable sitting on the floor. His decision was transmitted to the Italian coordinator. forcing the students to desperately look for it store after store) laid heaped up disorderly before a scruffy altar. There was no part of it that could be criticized. but many students. mainly the theme of no-mind. I had become acquainted with those kind friends during the seminars of my previous teacher S. I created a short pause. He probably interpreted my presence there as a move of repentance.) When his collaborator. a sound of tolling bells came from a distant village . I was appalled and disoriented. We exchange hugs as nothing had happened. The traditional offerings (he required also a coconut. One day I had a visit from the couple that organized the master's tours in Germany. he had interpreted my letter as an oblique criticism.on enjoying the vibration of each syllable. with aching back and knees. But I deliberately began to control myself and took the resolution not to give him any unsolicited advice in the future. As a reply. had I not went to welcome him back to Europe. Master's reaction was inexplicable. (Actually. a guided group practice which served as a review both for the new initiates and for those who were already practicing. I decided to pretend nothing happened. explained me what happened behind the scenes. he crossed me off his list of disciples. we underlined the necessity of making a particular proposal to our teacher: to organize. Some months went by and probably my experience with that teacher would have ended that way. it is necessary to refer again to the haste and shallowness with which he explained the Kriya techniques. This amplified the experience of joy . I occupied myself with making this proposal reach the teacher through a friend who went to India. I gave him a letter to deliver to the teacher with my regards and a warm embrace. who did not even inform me. In order to explain the definitive crack in our relationship. 72 . waited just for the explanation of the techniques. keep on collaborating with him and to drop the theme of my letter. which he improperly called Swadhyaya. which in our place was very difficult to find. enough to perceive the sweet irradiation springing out from each center.. After each syllable. In order not to disturb the peace of all the persons who were with me to receive initiation in the Higher Kriyas. those who came from other cities saw all their plans for the return journey falling through and were very anxious.H. enduring its length as a giant bummer. I was living a magnificent period. all he said was correct. Since he usually arrived with great delay relative to the agreed time. with a slight indecipherable hint of embarrassment.limitlessly.

it was not possible that we discussed this technical detail together.When. just in time to catch the last train. tried to reproduce the same noise. the male students would look at women (except their wife) as mothers and. it has been seen that people living a morally questionable life were successful in Kriya. in spite of his close collaborators' polite complaints. from now onwards. 12 Only then he switched to a hurried explanation of the basic techniques. Perhaps in the beginning the best thing is not to cry shame because of a problematic student's behavior. a problem of translation might have occurred. in my opinion. someone had already left the room. It happened that from one year to another he demonstrated Thokar in a visibly different way. he loved to linger on Patanjali's Yama and Niyama. People remembered very well the head movements they had formerly seen: his lie was too evident. which set one Kriya school against another. according to what I'm able to remember. was the sole technical "discourse" I had with him in the course of my six years with him. he shouted that my practice was not his business. The public listened to his vain words with a sigh of ill-concealed nuisance. I found the courage to drop a hint about a technical issue. but he continued using it in order to be heard by the last rows of students too. 73 . coming spontaneously to the socalled virtuous life. women would look at men (except their husband) as fathers. In any case. despite it being late and people being tired. a kriyaban's life would be licentious? The necessity of accepting definite ways of behavior. as Kriya teachers usually do. Confronted with other minor changes from one year to another. This. Why not put confidence in the transforming power of Kriya? Why thinking that without oaths. I know that many of the students. When one among the listeners asked him about the reason for the changes. One day I decided to time him: the explanation of the fundamental technique of Pranayama was offered in no more than two minutes! He demonstrated Pranayama by means of an excessively loud vibratory sound. requiring people who are anxious for learning Kriya Yoga techniques to take an oath to obey them is only a farce and a waste of time. To put it simply. He carried on that way for years. when we were alone and he was seeking something in a room. taking all the necessary time to ask the audience to take a solemn vow: that. He knew that this sound was not correct. in the past seminars. during another tour. He suddenly turned toward me with his eyes showing such a hate as if he was in the act of killing me. Although I spent weeks with him. Months later. just to stop his ravings. correspondingly. he argued he had not changed anything and that. is something that appears spontaneously after having tasted the honey of the spiritual experience. As for Higher Kriyas the situation was the same. My teacher's request in particular was impossible. believing that this was the "secret" he had brought from India. sparing himself the annoyance of getting up and walking among them. he would not bother to say that the sound had to be smooth rather than vibrating. I had the impression that I was cooperating with an archaeologist who was deliberately altering certain findings in order to justify them to the public in the theoretical 12 I respect of course Yama-Niyama (the what-is-correct and the what-is-not-correct) but. while a lot of conformists failed. an oath that no one would ever respect. Everyone gave an assent with a nod.

Another year went by. There were moments in which. from a distance. they didn't "survive" such a meeting. I rejoiced at this opportunity because I dreamed I could finally explain Kriya in a complete and exhaustive way. only to conduct a more beautiful life here in the West compared to the wretched life in India -. I took leave of those students.about a dozen people had received Kriya -. by counseling a minimal routine. one day he asked me to teach Kriya to those who were interested and who couldn't meet him in his tours. thinking of my meek beginning in the practice of Yoga. After some months -. I answered kindly but succinctly and invited them to the next seminar where my teacher would be present. One or two among the most tenacious students made up some questions and called me just to have the illusion of carrying on. Often I repeated like a Mantra these verses from a poem (Journey's End) of Sri Aurobindo: Now the wasteland. I felt that this man. well knowing that they would practice for some weeks. As an answer to some friends abroad. Observing in my teacher the most total lack of human understanding.framework to which he was accustomed. instead.which he had often described to me. He knew well that my teacher was a total disaster from a didactic point of view. I saw that so many things were not going in the right direction. did not love Kriya. I wanted no student to feel the pain of seeing a legitimate question unconsidered. a relationship with a real person. always getting accurate answers. They doubted that Kriya worked and that they had made the right choice in receiving initiation in it. My subconscious mind was beginning to rebel. whose every small whim I tried to satisfy as if I was doing a sacred deed. and behind it heaven. I switched to the explanation of the basic techniques. How could I ever give Kriya initiation using a knowledge that did not originate from my teacher? 74 . I helped to organize his tours in a way so that he could spread Kriya in his rushed. There I met a very serious student who was already familiar with my teacher's behavior and was taking part in the initiation ceremony only as a revision. I can vividly remember a dream in which I was swimming in manure. now the silence. superficial manner: behind my mask of fake delight hid a dry agony. A blank dark wall. I went on behalf of my teacher to their group to teach them Kriya Yoga. then most of them would leave everything and pursue other esoteric interests. After introducing the theme of no-mind. I gave Kriya initiation following the fixed protocol by which he bid me to abide. my heart felt an indefinite nostalgia for that period which was waiting for nothing but consistency and honesty on my side to rise again and blossom unimpeded. they entered a deep crisis. He perceived that I had learned many details from other sources. He used it. Turning Point For reasons that I don't want to explore here.I sensed I was doing a virtually useless work. Usually. He asked me a lot of pertinent questions. That was the point when he asked me: "From whom have you learned all these details?".

he would stop coming to our group. too desirous to touch with my hand and verify the goodness of his teachings. The most probable situation was that my teacher would have become very angry and would have flown into a fury. My friends liked him. I did not receive. would be able to comprehend the reason for my action. yet comfortable. since I was authorized to teach Kriya. imagining a hypothetical talk with him. I didn't want to destroy him. I didn't want to contest him. Why did he always evade me? I decided to behave in a candid way as if I had not perceived his tone: I had the desire to see what he was capable of doing.He could understand my predicament but was surprised that. A harsh reply from my third teacher came just a few days later. and now all that really ended! 75 . It was too beautiful: I was free. the necessity that brought me to write to him was to establish once and for all what I was supposed to communicate and what not to communicate to the kriyabans during initiation. they got themselves up for his visit with an intense practice of Kriya. he did not address it directly to me but pretended to answer back to the 'persona' that had materially sent my letter via fax." I saw he had understood nothing. Thomas. Few people. tensely. In a disdainful way. He wrote that my excessive attachment to the techniques would never let me out of the fences of my mind -. The nightmare was over! I took a one day vacation and had a long walk. a mutual talk about some Kriya details was necessary. I had never found the chance to talk freely with him about the Kriya details! It was logical and befitting for me to settle the matter as soon as possible. could also be present. I roamed a lot. I had been too many years with him. as a result of our break. We should have talked to each other long before it came to this! I wondered why he had never let me express my concerns. Reading the term "gratification. those people who loved him would suffer. I thus made him understand that he would have not wasted his time and breath only for me. in fact. I wrote that. but within one week at the latest I would have received his answer. neither then nor later. I would have been the one who had disturbed an imperfect. He added that he would have satisfied my request but only for gratifying my ego. my second letter had brought about a definitive split. I neither apologized nor answered in a resentful tone. I sent him a fax where I mentioned the matter at hand and prayed him to arrange his schedule in a way that we could discuss it after his arrival in my group during his next tour. Through a friend. Knowing how irascible the disposition of my teacher was. All of a sudden I found myself crying with joy. authorized by him to impart the Kriya initiation. but there was no other way out. Some weeks later I was shown that on his Internet site the plan of his visit to Italy had changed and the name of my town had been taken off. situation. If the whole situation slipped out of my hands and. I added that at such an event the other three people in Europe.I was like S. his annual visit was a powerful stimulus to their effort. in anticipation of an event I intuitively knew would come. My subconscious mind was ready for the cataclysm. He was in Australia. any answer. since I taught Kriya on his behalf. I hesitated a lot.

took advantage of that episode to also break any contact with him. In time they understood the deep-seated motives of my breakup and expressed solidarity with me. They were fed up with the dullness of his philosophical discourses followed by scanty technical explanations. the concepts were repeated ad nauseam. The sense of all the time wasted -. I was relieved of any constraint of wearing a mask of hypocrisy. None of them taught Kriya in a serious way. I didn't have to go here and there to organize Kriya seminars. I accepted to cooperate with this project. which didn't quench their thirst for a thoroughly understanding of Kriya. an enervating situation was over. bearing part of its cost.of all the silly things which had been carried out thoughtlessly -. while replying to those who called me to ask information about him. I had not even a faint idea of what our group was to become without a teacher joining us in the near future. My thought went to all the Kriya enthusiasts who found. insurmountable obstacles in the understanding of that beloved discipline. I manage to remain alone.was weighing me down. they seemed to come out of an hypnotic state and.CHAPTER 5 A CLEAN MYSTICAL PATH The years that followed the break-up with my last teacher were completely different from the previously described years. who had hardly been tolerating his bad manners. visibly vexed. I found myself looking at the mountains marking out the boundaries of the distant horizon in all directions. During a break in the afternoon. Some months later the wheel of good fortune seemed to be turning again. In less than half an hour the sun would paint them pink – of an intense hue on their eastern side and tinged with blue on the western side. As he was well qualified for his role. the Himalayas being their continuation. An intimate kriyaban friend went to India to meet this teacher for a private interview. Musings upon the Guru-disciple Relationship It was Winter. as I did. there was a great profusion of words. Like a domino effect. tried to humiliate the scrupulous student and silence him. there was the possibility of inviting a new Kriya Acharya to Europe. Better said: when it came to teach simple and banal things that even kindergarten children could understood. All went magnificently. My first organization of Kriya and the other teachers that I followed for so many years had disappointed me for one reason. I imagined India to be right behind them. other coordinators in Europe. This split of my relationship with that teacher was perceived with bewilderment by those friends who felt they were his disciples. when they came near the core issues and when among the public there was one who politely but with determination asked a precise explanation. All those obstacles seemed to me an absurdity that wore the 76 . Having dismissed that rascal from my life. One day I went to the nearby mountains to ski with a couple of friends.

Perhaps some annotator would try to force its meaning into his own theories. to skim its few pages – sober. Maybe what was virtually eternal for them (living like a lord. in a complete. at the same time. creating further doubts! I was day dreaming of a book which would prove its validity by attempting to reproduce Lahiri Mahasaya's thought. Nay. yet very rich in content. If I was describing my experiences. My book could not be a threat to any honest Kriya Acharya's activity. No more rhetorical claims of legitimacy and riddle-like sentences to allow the reader to guess at some technical details and. In spite of having been published many years ago and of the several texts of Hatha Yoga appearing recently. especially if they had accepted to teach the entire Kriya properly .those who get by on donations received during rituals of initiation and who exert power over people thanks to the pledge of secrecy . without being at odds with the deeply-rooted conditioning of their "cerebral chemistry"? Of course. I visualized a book on Kriya explaining every technique in great detail.I felt an infinite rebellion. It was hard. But how could one highlight this to them. If this book existed. 77 . rational vision.gradually. he had assembled. harmonious set of techniques! It came to my mind the book: Hatha Yoga: The Report of a Personal Experience by Theos Bernard. we would have a reliable manual of Kriya that would have restrained the many small or large variations made up by various teachers. surrounded by 13 This extraordinary handbook.. The problem consisted in the fact that mine was only a day dream! I let my thoughts stray toward what could have happened if I had written it.. sincere researchers would surely be able to recognize the strength and self-sufficient intrinsic evidence of the original text. 'dusty' techniques once again became relevant.. either through fancy or borrowed from some esoteric book. Old. The intention was definitely not to celebrate myself or lay the foundations for yet another new school of Kriya. Some people would swallow that bait. some teachers of Kriya . of course. For the first time I dared to contemplate this prospect. comprehensible in front of the eyes of our intuition. in any field. However. in the simplest and most logical way. when a skill is to be transmitted. better than all the others. Good teachers are and will always be needed. this would only be with the purpose of clarifying theoretic and technical explanations. while there were much more complicated techniques which could only be passed on by an authorized teacher to chosen disciples. to summarize the totality of my knowledge of Kriya into a book -. Gheranda Samhita and Shiva Samhita. with the required care without keeping anything for themselves. contact the author and pay good money to be introduced to the rubbish that. yet possible.clothes of a nightmare -. 13 A similar book on Kriya would be a real blessing for scholars and researchers. feasible. How often have I wondered what would have happened if Lahiri Mahasaya or one of his disciples had written it! My imagination led me to fantasize about its cover.welding together techniques and theories through a clean. This happens. I'm sure that some pseudo-guru would say that the techniques described in it were for beginners only. clarifies the teachings contained in the three fundamental texts of Tantrism: Hatha Yoga Pradipika.would consider my book as a real threat. that book is still one of the best. this is part of our human nature.

It spreads a false teaching!" Other people for different reasons could not like the book. broken that rule. Each part of my dream had developed in the space of a few seconds. I saw that bizarre situation as poignantly real. I was already living in their happiness. secrecy was a blind dogma. I got choked up by my doubts. German and Spanish. insensitive to the suffering of many researchers. but it cannot be: it is human. he found a kriyaban who explained to him the technique and shared with him his lessons -. I anticipated their scornful comments uttered while skimming its pages: "It contains only stories that have nothing to do with Babaji's and Lahiri Mahasaya's teachings. or because their refined sensibility does not manage to catch that 'vibration' which should characterize the authenticity of the author's experience. In another case that really made me uneasy. People who were otherwise faithful to the organization had. they say it is sacred. and who knows how many times it would get back to the teacher who had decreed its unforgivable flaws. But when I returned to my life. the book would continue to circulate. I remembered a couple of cases in which the rigid injunction had been broken by common sense. a Catholic priest sincerely desired to learn Kriya but could not receive it from the right channels because of an issue of conscience in the act of signing the application form of the lessons. under exceptional conditions. asked to receive initiation into the Higher Kriyas -. However. coarsely challenging the sacredness of the Guru-disciple relationship as the unique way to be instructed in Kriya? For sure. At times he would have to pretend not to notice that a student was browsing through its pages during his seminars. In my experience. The answer was always an inflexible no. and they would be fearful of that.people who have to meet all their needs with the hope of getting the crumbs of their "secrets") might change. I perceived this as a cruel form of discrimination. it was clear that writing a book was all another thing: this very idea created a painful grip in my breast along with a general sense of uneasiness 78 . many times when some friends of mine who didn't understand English. How could I find the courage to violate the vow of secrecy. Only those who love Kriya more than their whims would feel an enormous relief in finding it in an esoteric library. either because they are taken aback by the barrenness of an exposition deprived of frills. Thanks to them. as if every part of it had already been rehearsed and cherished innumerable times. which hurts their convictions. mother.that was an action he was strictly forbidden to do. the outcome of petty calculations". of excruciating conflicts and sufferings. A kriyaban explained the dynamics of Kriya Pranayama to his invalid. They would try to destroy its credibility by means of a pitiless censorship. but willing and capable to practice it. invaded my consciousness as a swollen torrent. I recalled what happened many. thus missing a part of the conference… By staring into the blue of the sky above the gilded mountain brims. an innumerable amount of times I had thought: "Such a rule is the cause of disastrous effects.such instruction was given only in written form to those who had completed the study of the complete set of lessons which existed only in English.

I had first to analyze in depth the concept of Guru. 79 . secrecy is essential to their preservation. If the Guru-disciple relationship is an illusion that one day will dissolve. the Guru-God would belong to everyone. I understood that in order to be at peace with myself. of what one day they will become. 15 It is strange to remark that only in the world of initiatic magic a method is deprived of its value if it is learned in non-conventional ways. that is exactly what He wrote: thrown away. Actually he said: "I am not the Guru. is the Divine Mother Herself"? Only now I was able to see how extraneous this teaching was from my sensitivity. Lahiri Mahasaya refused to be worshiped as a God. 15 I am aware that this individual may truly feel that the 14 Whether one likes it or not. Knowing some minor but however important alterations in the practice of Kriya supported by organizations. how should it be considered. if there were no request of secrecy. 14 Some years before. would inevitably become more "human". how should we relate to it. otherwise they would face a strong conflict within themselves. each kriyaban should look at him not as an unreachable ideal. In other words. From the idea that Guru and God are the same reality.Y. He added that he wanted to be considered like "a mirror".and unreality. there comes the idea that the organization is the materialization of God's will. The organization would become just an institution devoted to publishing the works of the Master. Now. the Kriya practice will be able to produce. When kriyabans realize that their Guru is the personification of what resides potentially inside themselves. Only through the dogma of secrecy could they hope to maintain that a kriyaban cannot approach God. Besides courage. To face the truth. but as the personification of all the wisdom and spiritual realization which. Other justifications for this myth appear fragile. People who have been raised with the usual dogmas about the Guru-disciple relationship are prevented from fully understanding the impact of these words. then that mirror must be "thrown away". This is a point that some among His followers seem to have forgotten. it would be better to affirm: "to maintain the purity of the modifications!" I might be wrong. during that long phase of the path in which the illusion appears to us at all effects as reality? Certainly the Guru cannot be considered identical to God. They claim that secrecy helps "to maintain the purity of the teachings". if not through that Guru and that organization. The myth of secrecy allows the myths of the irreplaceable role of the organization to be kept alive. it takes also a good brain capable of overcoming the tendency to be easily swayed. I was perplexed when representatives of my first organization suggested that Guru and God were one and the same reality. in due time. especially those that are nice and gratifying. discriminating approach to abandon one's own illusions. A chief of the most important Italian branch of my school had once instructed me: "Don't you understand that P. it takes courage and an intelligent. but I feel that the unique benefit of secrecy for an individual is to have one's pleasure of possessing something exclusive reach a fever pitch. it instead perfectly suits those of the esoteric-magic dimension of certain societies – rather. The threat of possible calamities that would happen to whom infringes the dogma of secrecy clashes with everything we read in the biographies of the saints. I don't maintain a barrier between the true Guru (the Divine) and the disciple".

I had the inner vision of three beautiful mountains.. I remained as calm as possible to feel that particular strength and pressure that increased tightening the whole region of my chest with its grip of beatitude. The Guru-disciple relationship is an illusion -. That image was strong. no one will deprive me the pleasure of asking where have all those spiritual vibrations gone and . That mountain was the symbol of the universal spiritual path. But if one day he will dismiss the practice. rejecting all the Kriya matter as an overcome obsession. Students were required to swear their everlasting devotion not only to one person but also to a chain of Masters. I tried to think sequentially but either the mental and physical fatigue was impairing my reasoning ability or different conditionings carved in my brain acted as entities which had a life of their own. tremendously vivid in my inner vision. he was a special aid chosen by God Himself even before they began to seek the spiritual path. I found myself crying for joy. Looking for a different spiritual teaching amounted to "a hateful rejection of the Divine’s hand.. It is the Guru-preceptor that introduces you to God. I won't dare to contradict him. It talked to my intuition: "A Guru might be very important to your spiritual development. stretched out to offer benediction". One evening. Once the students were initiated into a spiritual discipline by the "legitimate channels" (authorized disciples). this. I had the impression of having cast a glance toward the misty sources from which my current trend of life originated. even if only one of them was to be regarded as the Guru-preceptor. Again my thought had turned onto a minor point. but your personal effort when you remain alone is far more important. was black. There is no other way to achieve Self realization.useful and comfortable -. They were taught that their Guru would burn somehow a part of their Karma and protect them evermore. the highest. In any Guru-disciple relationship there comes a moment when you remain alone and you awaken to the realization that your path is a solitary flight between you and your indwelling Self. while I practiced Pranayama with the awareness totally centered in Sahasrara and the tongue in Kechari Mudra. My thoughts began to revolve again around the situation of the diffusion of Kriya. for one reason or another. A spiritual researcher with a balanced rational-devotional approach has good reason to be baffled by this. I was madly enamored of that image. appeared to me as a monstrosity. My heart exulted. It was very difficult for me to put all the crucial points in a logic order. the departed Guru was said to be real and present in their life. It was as if an inner thread linked all my past actions to that image.appearing real until you are not overcome by what surpasses your 80 . There could be nothing more beautiful: it made me mad with love.spiritual vibrations received through formal Initiation brought his practice to a "higher octave". what "octave" is he now attuned to. Each time I tried to organize my vision in a well-integrated and coherent whole. The weird thing was that the word Guru was attributed to a person whom the disciples had not known directly. its form reminded me of the point of an arrow made of obsidian. receiving meaning and significance from it. The central mountain.

they would help him in his mission as a spiritual teacher. after having haunted all the possible ceremonies of Initiation given by the "legitimate" channels. It came to me spontaneously to again read the memorable. your will. on the contrary. ever practice Kriya with the same dignity and courage with which Beethoven challenged his fate? I turned down the lights and watched the sun go down behind some trees on the top of a hill. I read that one day. This novitiate. I have become a poor fakir." That glaring intuition faded away after a couple of days. " (Translated by Constance Garnett) Eventually the awareness dawned upon me that Vivekananda' story and Dostoevsky's extract depicted situations which were intrinsically. after a long walk. obscurely. playing Beethoven's second movement of the Emperor Concerto. his Guru. The shape of a cypress covered a part of that great. One evening. we are saying something true and unquestionable. I do not have anything. complete self-abnegation. While the great examples of Guru-disciple relationship were based on a real physical meeting between two persons.mind. I set the record player on "repeat". in the hope of self-conquest. my relationship was purely ideal. I closed my eyes for various minutes and tried to have a dispassionate. into his soul and his will. Ramakrishna explained that the powers he passed onto him could not be used for his own spiritual fulfillment. to escape the lot of those who have lived their whole life without finding their true selves in themselves. exceedingly different from mine.. Now. That was the eternal beauty! That was the norm by which I would be inspired. this terrible school of abnegation. everything I had I gave to you.. impressive discourse by Dostoevsky about the role of elders in Russian monasteries in his The Brothers Karamazov: "What was such an elder? An elder was one who took your soul. with these powers you will do the world an immense good". In my room. Vivekananda started to feel a strong current before fainting. Ramakrishna entered Samadhi while his disciple was near him. whispered: "O my Naren (Vivekananda).that of Vivekananda's "investiture" by his Guru Ramakrishna. The organization made me believe that I had a Guru -whereas in fact I was light years away from having one. in order. you renounce your own will and yield it to him in complete submission. Later. to attain perfect freedom. There was no other Guru 81 . crying. A strange image captured my attention . Did anybody. after a life of obedience. one had to get to that by himself. that is. more as a wound than as a theory unfolding its myths. being stuffed with all the possible Guru's blessings. today. toward the end of his life. if we say that Ramakrishna was Vivekananda's Guru. is undertaken voluntarily. I dragged myself back home. blood-red circle. I think my subconscious came up with such a flash as a warning not to yield to the temptation of throwing something valid and precious away. Worn-out by my thoughts. unemotional discernment of the situation. from self. Having returned to consciousness. When you choose an elder. of self-mastery. subdued by a sudden tiredness. the problem of the Guru-disciple relationship emerged.

A Fruitful Shock That kriyaban friend who went to India for a long vacation to meet the teacher we were planning to invite in Europe called me: he had the opportunity to have a private interview with him and had good news. natural disasters. since he promised the teacher he would not reveal anything. I asked him what it was and his reply literally froze me: he could not tell me. marriage.refused by a nearly automatic act of the will.a significant one of course. I felt that there is not such a sharp division. I am sure of this fact because it was the only thing my friend was able to see – we did not talk about inner details of the practice.they touches the surrounding threads of the net. They had talked about the deplorable situation of the diffusion of Kriya here in the West: the teacher was sorry for that and manifested his willingness to help us. How many times have I heard the acid remark that those who have no Guru have their Ego as their Guru! Organizations in particular emphasize that. true love. 17 He clarified that. The Collective Unconscious is "inherited with our cerebral structure" and consists of "the human systems of reacting" to the most intense events that can happen in one's lifetime: the birth of a which I could mirror myself but the mystic fire burning in my heart. Some hours later. serious illness. that the situation is simple. In my opinion. When single individuals take an action -. Hence. This net connecting every one of us is the Collective Unconscious. family crisis. Should I accept the idea of a marked separation of spiritual researchers into two classes? On one side there are those who have a Guru and follow him humbly. like the network of our brain's neurons. Those who follow the spiritual path carry other people's evolution ahead.. Considering the episode later. on the other side. like starting on a mystic path and making good progress on it -. 16 My musings arrived just to that point and there they stopped -. I was all ears. Serious practitioners are never isolated: they will be helped by other people's positive response and vice versa they will be slowed down by their indolence and apathy. Visualize a net: each individual is a junction from which a lot of other links fan out.for months. war. we were sitting in my room. My friend had his Pranayama reviewed. I realized what this incorrect detail was: I had not made the abdominal breath in a particularly visible way. 17 82 . death of a loved one. he asked me to practice Pranayama in front of him. He was enthusiastic. in relation to our group. "removed" things that we cannot recall to consciousness . he had indeed asked for his teacher's permission to correct eventual mistakes in our practice: the answer had been negative and the teacher swore him to secrecy. He remarked that there was a fault in my practice. Was this teacher – who had manifested the intention to help us 16 To Freud the Unconscious was similar to a depot full of old. there are those without a Guru who can follow only their intuition and reasoning.. Jung discovered a deeper level of it: the Collective Unconscious which links all human beings by the deepest layers of their psyche. each person is part of this net: there is no division.

In my opinion the future of Kriya diffusion belongs also to those seekers whose earnestness is so great that they are able to transform the no-matter-howreceived instruction into "gold". Some days later.concerned that we would not find any need to invite him to Europe. as if this justified his travel in India. I taught Kriya to a couple of earnest persons who could not receive Kriya after this changing of planes. she handled the financial side of the tour in a coarse way. Now. they will die without this information. after our mistake had been corrected? Was he really so petty and unkind? I did not put pressure on my friend to disclose any other detail about his talk with that teacher. One of the first things I was taught was that if Kriya is not received from the right channel it doesn't have any value. they had to be put on an airplane and sent to India. I improved the compilation of my notes about the different Kriya techniques. added conditions that seemed unacceptable to me. or visit him.but how could he just let me and our group go on with a wrong practice? The shattering fact was to see that friend with whom I had shared everything of my spiritual path. an innumerable series of charter flights should transport all those interested in Kriya .no matter if old or ill . like a pilgrimage to Lourdes or Fatima! This farce could not be even worthy of being considered. and would not. I followed their progress: they gave me the evidence they were improving in a way worthy of admiration. Each year. let me roll my sleeves up and move on!" 83 . I was sure that the Kriya techniques worked outside the Guru-disciple relationship. I declined the offer. satisfied with having noticed our mistake. We had reached this absurd situation: if the friends of my group had to receive one more crumb of information regarding the Kriya a remote Indian village. Actually I was not in the mood of undertaking another work of organization. the money and the time he spent in this venture. A few months before I would shake my head that it was not possible to practice Kriya without begging and obtaining it from an organization or from a living Guru. I could not. accompanying me in my ventures with both the teachers and suffering the same woes on himself. As for the idea of my visit to his place. and pass them on to those friends who had already received initiation but not in all the levels of Kriya. It is ineffective. jotted down during different seminaries. With my thinking faculties almost paralyzed by this sudden turning of the events. I have trust in those who think: "Beyond either reasonable or improbable expectations of finding a Kriya expert at my disposal. I used my past experiences as a starting point. the contrary had been proved. I didn't retaliate but reacted very badly and refused to see and to talk with that friend again. Otherwise. enter the privacy of his experience . The responsibility of choosing a didactic plan was mine: in order to envisage it. contacted by the teacher's secretary. he would have required the customary oath secrecy.

showing their intrinsic value in the light of Lahiri Mahasaya's legacy. Vishnu and Shiva located in the first. years before. It was not easy to extract from my huge heaps of notes. had been embarked on in a superficial manner. I felt the necessity to dedicate a more constant attention to what. There was the feeling of working on a difficult puzzle. I didn't know if. Unfortunately. I decided to describe all the techniques in the scheme of four Kriyas (whose meaning will be described in chapter 7). each one ideally preparatory the next one. as if. but only in case I receive other information corroborating them. collected during years with different teachers. I moved around as 18 The accurate details of how different incremental routines are structured is to be found in the third part of the book. navel) were added by Lahiri Mahasaya. like a voluntary prisoner. I wondered if these had to be put in some kind of one-to-one correspondence with the process of unfastening the internal knots mentioned in Yoga tradition (Brahma. I reduced my social life to an absolute minimum in order to give my all to writing the book. the major impulse which led me to finish the prescribed number of repetitions of each Higher Kriya as soon as possible was also the anxiety of obtaining the next initiation from my teacher. for some unfathomable reasons. I took part in a pilgrimage with a group of people and walked a full night in order to reach a beautiful sanctuary the following morning. the essential core of Kriya Yoga. After second thoughts. There remain some variations in my shorthand notebooks. four. with evenings that seemed to have no end. six or more levels of Kriya had to be expected. I practiced again the three parts of the technique of the Second Kriya that I received from my third teacher and that I rectified and perfected through precious informations I received from other sources of the same school (Tribhangamurari school as it will be explained in chapter 8.The First Draft of the Book I purchased a computer and. I could not avoid that this procedure brought to the surface deeply rooted old wounds. fourth and sixth Chakra respectively) to which two secondary knots (tongue. without having a preview of what was to be obtained in the end. Lahiri Mahasaya wrote that a kriyaban is deeply transformed by it and learns to see "what others cannot or do not actually want to see". In the first draft. 18 It was perhaps because I lived them more in the open air and more in summer than in any other season that I associate them with long sunsets. ready to be added to the book. I would not have been able to contact him in the future. 84 . I wrote all I knew about the Kriya techniques. In fact. was fed by a strange fear. in the past. I was not entirely sure how to define these levels. in the final completed picture. The ardent desire of "squeezing out" anything he could teach me. At the same time I decided to resume the practice of the so-called Incremental Routines with the maximum amount of conscientiousness.) It is said that this Second Kriya serves to cut the heart knot. Now I could retrieve my initial enthusiasm and bring new life to my Kriya path. the description of the Higher Kriyas was given as a chain of techniques (eleven).

they go on labeling the seekers' desire for deepening the Kriya praxis as a "dangerous mania". In a rush of anger. I imagined that the petty idea of possessing a secret knowledge. old fogeys. If I had their email. betraying the lowest form of consideration. I wondered how could they dare to enter (uninvited) a person's life and personal space. Walking on. I was perfectly aware that mine was not a commonly established way of practicing. I found this very stupid.if my heart bore a brazier within. I was struck with the pedantic and conceited tone of some that abused the genuine and honest curiosity of other people. corrupted only by the pollution of mind. camouflaging with a semblance of spiritual advancement the nothingness that he 85 . but with such a beseeching attitude as if they feared even worse calamities. I had a feeling that even the most egotistical person is able to give his life away for his children. During this Incremental Routine. I perceived that the center of my personality was not in the brain. bearing witness to an era which I believed much more distant in time than it was in reality. But the same person that you admire as noble and fearless. as a consequence. even he can find in himself the power for great and incredible actions. Unfortunately. Mo . something thawed and it came to such an intensity of love that the same experience turned into a "blissful" pain. he cannot avoid painful experiences. I felt that a man cannot by instinct avoid loving or taking care of somebody . He said there were a number of true Kriya teachers around today. I would murmur the syllables the abyss of their tragedy – were not able to voice their sharp loud cry to God facing Him in protest but kept on imploring God. but was unwilling to share any names or addresses. not with a spirit of devotion and surrender. is not able to maintain that attitude when Religion is concerned. My desire was to see if any other kriyaban had my same problems. but I could not help it. was the only thing keeping together the pieces of his scattered mind. Many were seeking information about Kechari Mudra. As the sun rose over our path and the sanctuary appeared over a hill. (which are typical of the Thokar practice) trying to put each one in the correspondent center. With factious tenderness. then I realized that my mates' lives were wrapped up in love. that person was very secretive and exclusive. Na. treating that person as an incompetent and superficial beginner! Would it be so difficult to simply answer truthfully: "I don't have that information"? I remember a discussion with one who claimed he have had access to original Kriya. I felt sorry for all those people who . about whom they know his own children. They talked with the same tone used by my old "ministers". now and then I consulted a couple of Forums for devotees of Kriya Yoga. I understood that the reality of love was the most intense force of life. Noticing how many illusions are propagated by religions and cults.. Something started to be perceived in my heart.. I would have sent immediately this instruction to them. The sentiment of this ineluctable reality was experienced as a painful grip tearing my chest apart. a sort of tension of tenderness. but in my heart. Thinking of humanity as a single thing. They had the audacity of hush the humble student by counseling to improve the depth of what they already had received. not conveyable to others.

occasionally. that such did not solve my problem: this sleepiness came back as soon as I resumed the practice.was from an human point of view. I was caught by such a euphoria that I felt the irresistible instinct to swing the body. I had waited for years and ravenously desired to face the "impossible" doses of the final incremental routine of the micro movement Tribhangamurari. Often I was caught by a strong. and then left again. There is an Indian song (in the final part of the movie Mahabharata) whose lyrics are taken from the Svetasvatara Upanishad . It was like dancing from a sitting stance. accompanying the dance with a subtle form of Thokar."I have met this Great Spirit. Only the one who knows Him can transcend the limits of birth and death. lean my back against a rock and stay there. When I thought the last syllable. however. at dusk I would go to the beach. I used to carry along a seat made of a plastic and a wool layer. One day I was in a cliffy place not far from a beach. I practiced keeping my eyes open. having in itself an almost unbearable charm. During daytime I would take shelter from the sun under a tree. I would move an object. from one side of my body to the other to keep track of the approximate number of 36 cycles. a little stone. as radiant as the sun. More than once I found my back slightly bent forward. The period in which I was absorbed in this process occurs in my memory as enveloped by a dreamy aura. I would sit down. After many hours of practice. a lot of rest…) to find some relief from it. breathe deeply and proceeded with the Mantra and the consequent Micro movement. transcending any material conception of obscurity. I was trying to hide my tears behind the black lenses of my sunglasses. unless in poetic form. Why should Kriya belong to him? Kriya was a collection of introspective tools taken from different traditions. the technique embarked into my life and blended with it. there was no other job for me! I have always loved that technique: even a little practice was always a miracle of sweetness. I found out. When I listened 86 . I learned not to straighten it with a sudden movement. At the end of each cycle. it is actually very difficult for me to refer to specific details regarding it. overpowering sleepiness. my trunk quivered a little giving such a profusion of bliss! I learned to practice without finding any disturbance in what was around: in this way. It was absurd to claim they belonged to one person. at the end of my day. After some months of freedom. I spent a lot of time in the open.. Whenever I pronounced the seventh syllable. because that would interrupt the condition of absorption and quiet.. where a small number of people used to go for a walk and stop for a little rest in the surroundings. thinking of the following one it swung right. the waves were continually changing their color. the sky was an indestructible crystal of infinite transparency. there was nothing else to do but to accept this situation. After interrupting the practice to get some rest. I was lucky that pension age came early in my life. something to drink and a thirty-sixgrain rosary. I received the proposal of beginning a new job which was more engaging than the previous one. pretending to stare at a distant object. There is no other way to reach liberation but meeting this Great Spirit". my trunk swung left. especially such a nasty one. I cannot describe what I felt. There was no way (coffee.

Was entstanden ist. I began to realize that the Thing was done and the book was really accessible to everyone. one day the book was ready and I posted it on the Web. Nothing would have the power to keep me away from this state and this terrifically beautiful practice. which I would enjoy for the rest of my life. Concerning the effects. I tried to go inexorably and all the way into any problem. but not forgotten the project of the book. My reaction was strange: I was amused and satisfied. must rise again! Cease from trembling! Prepare yourself to live! 87 .started to crumble. During one seminar he explained my actions as those of one who wants to make a business with Kriya. I had not felt any urgency. my heart was inflamed. das muß vergehen! Was vergangen. Nature hates a the beautiful voice of the Indian singer repeating "There is no other way". something peculiar took place. But truth is total truth: it touched the reality of life and zeroed my diplomatic mask.conditioning that seemed immovable -. I enjoyed that quiet moment of my life. I had disappeared from the world. Only then. My thinking became compact. so other people came into my life to keep the flame of friendship alive. Unfortunately the difficulty in bearing other's superficial behavior became the cause of some break-ups. The time employed in this activity had been much longer than expected. of a solidity that other people's suggestions were not capable to undermine. auferstehen! Hör auf zu beben! Bereite dich zu leben! Gustav Mahler (1860-1911) What was created. My friends said that I'll never put the last word to the enterprise. Many psychological fetters -. must perish! What perished. He defined me an "intellectual prostitute". experiencing the calmness and contentedness that comes to those who devote all their efforts to one single purpose. until I was able to find the truth. There was the tendency of going deeper. up to touching the unpolluted truth. At long last. inexorably. I could not tolerate the least deformation of truth. After a couple of months there came the reaction of him who had been my third teacher. But that night I could not sleep.

The author hopes this work will inspire intelligent feedback. especially if one decides to practice the techniques without having their execution checked first by an expert. Each person is different so it is not possible to predict what effects an intensive practice might have on a particular to download the latest edition of the book 88 . lung problems. such as high blood pressure. N. please advise him if you have physical problems. Thokar. securing expert counsel or guidance is indispensable.PART II: SHARING THE KRIYA YOGA TECHNIQUES CHAPTER 6 THE BASIC TECHNIQUES OF KRIYA YOGA Disclaimer of Responsibility The techniques described herein are exposed for study purposes only and should serve as a comparison with the works of other researchers. read through Part II and Part III of this book so you have a thorough understanding of the matter. Kriya Pranayama. The author disclaims any responsibility in case of negative results. There are delicate ones such as Maha Mudra. If you have a particular physical problem an expert can lead you through a very mild form of Kriya Pranayama and the corresponding Mudras – and if necessary may recommend that you practice them only mentally. Before you begin posing all kinds of questions to yourself. I wish to make clear that this book is not a Kriya Yoga manual! I may write one in the future and face the problem of dividing it into different lessons and giving all the necessary instructions for each level. Any remarks.B. When you go to an expert. or signs of hyperventilation …. However. and/or additions are welcome. criticism. and Yoni Mudra.kriyayogainfo. Those who intend to carry on with this practice should do so with a due sense of sacredness and awareness of the wealth it can bring to their life. You'll find that as you go through it many questions will be answered later on. Although you should have the right and the duty to control your own destiny. which cannot reasonably be learned without the help of an expert to check their execution. certain techniques cannot be learned from a manual. Visit at least once in a year the Web site www. corrections.

the Spiritual Reality manifests in a captivating way. Such books are usually filled with useless. is located at the base of the spinal column just above the coccygeal (tailbone) region. Many believe they can apply what they have found in books on Yoga to Kriya but this won't work. is in the lumbar region. absorbing all one's attention. subtle movements of energy in the body . While wasting time in visualizing all of it. Swadhisthana. the third Chakra. The fourth 89 .Introduction to the Localization of the Chakras The Chakras are subtle astral organs inside the spinal cord. Figure 1. at the same level as the navel. Those who practice Kriya Yoga (we will use the term kriyaban) start their practice of the basic technique of Kriya Pranayama by visualizing the spine as a hollow tube extending from its bottom to the brain. ideal steps on a mystic ladder guiding one safely to the deepest ecstatic experience.mental silence. Manipura. misguiding representations. With further practice. The perception of the Chakras First Five Chakras The first Chakra. a kriyaban runs the risk of losing the real meaning of the Kriya techniques or part of their riches. Muladhara.Kriya is not based on creating an artificial condition in it. is in the sacrum region halfway between Muladhara and Manipura. the second Chakra. When certain particular conditions are established .or a particular centering of the energy in some parts of the body reveal the essence of the Chakras. an intense desire of the soul . Kriya is a natural process leading to beneficial results and it should not be distorted by the power of so called "creative" visualization. especially if it goes against the physiology of the body -. they try to locate the seven Chakras. relaxation. Then.

the "inward route". 1. As soon as the mind is sufficiently calm (during a deep and long session of Kriya Pranayama) you will be able to listen to those astral sounds and locate astrally each Chakra. Luminous rays depart from their locations. The physical localization of the Chakras is accompanied by some kind of visualization. so to say. avoiding those suggested by New Age or tantric books. What is the importance of locating astrally the Chakras? It is tied with the ability of traveling along the spinal tunnel. concentrating on the point where you perceive a particular "cracking" sound. and you are listening to the inner sounds emanating from each Chakra's physical location. The location of the fifth Chakra can be detected by swaying your head from side to side.when the awareness travels up the spine. When the awareness comes down. holding one's bust immobile. Anahata. water. Some identify it with the hypophysis. Bhrumadhya. Kriya tradition puts them in relation with the five Tattwas: earth. is in the dorsal region. air and ether. others with the pineal gland. the Chakras are perceived as tiny "lights" illuminating the "hollow tube" which is visualized at the place of the spinal cord. Ajna (Medulla Oblongata.Chakra. Offering each Tattwa individually to the light of the "spiritual eye" gathering and intensifying in the region between the eyebrows. Ajna. others with the third ventricle of the brain. is in the central part of the head. To take the trouble to abide by such elementary visualization. It is preferable to abide by the following two-step procedure. they are internally perceived as organs distributing energy (coming from above) into the body. enlivening that part of the body which is in front of them. Kutastha) According to tradition. which in its turn is the basis of a higher achievement: to realize that the first five Chakras are five different states of consciousness. our anticipation is intended only to discourage kriyabans from being maniacally precise about the location of the Chakras: the practice of the different levels of Kriya Yoga will refine such perception. Even if it might seem now as they are not a physical reality. This is achieved when Kriya Pranayama takes. We are going to introduce all these aspects of the Kriya practice in the next chapter. fire. it is useful to remark that the true location of the Chakras can happen only in the astral dimension -. The simplest visualization fostering the dynamics of Kriya Pranayama is the following -. the location of the sixth Chakra. is the best guarantee that you are carrying on a profitable work. First detect the seat of the medulla oblongata (on top of the spinal 90 . There are different levels of development of this ability: Kechari Mudra brings about a great internalization process which fosters the experience especially when the "wind" of the breath subsides. its location can be felt by bringing the shoulder blades closer and concentrating on the tense muscles in the area between them. Vishuddha. is the highest action ever conceived to destroy the last shell of illusion. is located where the neck joins the shoulders. at collarbones' level. The fifth Chakra.

relax the muscles of the neck and keep your concentration on medulla oblongata for one minute: you will notice how any restlessness disappears. 91 . Raise your chin tensing the muscles of the neck at the base of the occipital bone. you will experience the radiance of a million suns. Such experience is also called "Kutastha Chaitanya. concentrate on the small hollow under the back of the head and come ideally inside a couple of centimeters. Ajna." Sahasrara (Bindu. having the coolness of a million moons. is the top of the head. In the higher phases of Kriya Pranayama. we become aware of the anterior fontanelle. You will feel the entire universe as your own body. But in Kriya Yoga there is always room for improvement. are those that teach a gradual approach to concentration on Sahasrara. In this region. the location of the seventh Chakra. the point between the eyebrows." or "Krishna consciousness.cord). lying immediately beneath the upper part of the cranium. Bindu is located in the occipital region. of the coronal and sagittal sutures. one day. it is located at the junction. During the first part of Kriya Pranayama the consciousness touches Bindu not use your own initiative. such light will intensify. The correct name of that region in an adult person is Bregma. Remaining centered in medulla oblongata. when our awareness finds Tranquility in Bindu." "Christ consciousness. where the hairline twists in a kind of vortex (where some Hindus with shaved heads wear a lock of hair). Ajna Chakra is the royal door to experience that part of the Divine Consciousness which is immanent in our physical universe. In phase 3 of Kriya Pranayama. Meditating with your awareness focused on it will prepare you for the experience of Kutastha (also known as "third eye" or "spiritual eye"): a luminous point in the middle of an infinite spherical radiance. on the skull. when we raise our awareness from the sixth to the seventh Chakra. maintaining the contraction of the muscles of the neck swing your head sideways (about a couple of centimeters left and right). Fontanelle) According to tradition. It is visualized as having the form of a horizontal disk about 12 centimeters in diameter. such visualization is enough to get ecstatic absorption. converge your inner gaze at Bhrumadhya. Your perception can be vague but if you go on looking internally being satisfied with whatever luminous perception comes. They counsel to place the awareness in Bindu and from there to become aware of the fontanelle. It is recommended not to override the previous stage of localization of the sixth Chakra (Ajna) and to practice concentration on fontanelle only when this is explicitly required by your teacher -. The most reliable Kriya schools (being careful not to cause difficult-to-sustain effects). Sahasrara. (It might be interesting to add that the tradition recommends to visualize medulla oblongata as shaped like the back of a little turtle. you have found the seat of the sixth Chakra.) 2. and observe the internal light in that region. If you come backwards about eight centimeters from the place where the light appears. at the end of each inhalation.

Pranayama with short breath and Yoni Mudra. Navi Kriya. Om Japa. neck. It is explained that when this Asana is combined with Kechari and Shambhavi Mudra. The shoulders are in a natural position. When the legs get tired. Sit cross-legged with the knees resting on the floor. Draw the heel of the left foot in toward the groin as much as possible. The key is to maintain an erect spine by sitting on the edge of a thick cushion so the buttocks are slightly raised.A Suitable Position for Meditation One should sit facing East. Maha Mudra. Kriya Pranayama (often called simply Pranayama). Let the right knee drop as far as possible toward the floor. THE BASIC TECHNIQUES OF KRIYA YOGA The techniques related to the first initiation of Kriya Yoga are eight: Talabya Kriya. Sitting in Padmasana (lotus position) is uncomfortable for a beginner because the knees and the ankles become extremely painful. In this way. The best hand position is with fingers interlocked as in the well known photo of Lahiri Mahasaya. This leg position combined with Kechari Mudra closes the pranic circuit and makes Kriya Pranayama easy and beneficial. mental Pranayama. It is said the position helps one to become aware of the movement of Prana. the right foot is placed on the left thigh and the left foot on the right thigh with the soles of the feet turned up. The right heel is against the pubic bone. This position has been used for meditation since time immemorial because it provides a comfortable and easily managed sitting position. reverse them to prolong the position. one leg at a time can be lowered and the knee joint relaxed! Siddhasana (Perfect Pose) is of medium difficulty: the sole of the left foot is placed against the right thigh while the heel presses on the perineum. since the third one is not suitable for beginners and is especially facilitated by achieving Kechari Mudra. According to Patanjali. In the difficult Padmasana position. and spine are in a straight line as if they were linked. There are yogis who have had to have knee cartilage removed after years of forcing themselves into the Padmasana. it may be beneficial to practice the half lotus on an armless chair provided it is large enough. it will be 92 . The first two are explained in this chapter. chest. I would not advise anyone to perform this difficult posture. The right leg is bent at the knee and the right foot is comfortably placed over the left thigh or calf or both. it results in an energetic condition that produces the experience of the internal light coming from each Chakra. For certain health or physical conditions. It helps keep the body from bending or falling over as it tends to do when deep Pratyahara is practiced. Lift the left foot and bring it toward the body so the sole is resting against the inside of the right thigh. The head. This balances the energy from the right hand to the left and vice versa. Most kriyabans are comfortable with the so-called Half-lotus. the yogi's posture (Asana) must be steady and pleasant. In the technique of Kriya Pranayama we shall distinguish three phases.

The second part of Kriya Pranayama is related to phase 2 of Kriya Yoga. the kriyaban presses the body of the tongue against the upper palate to create a suction cup effect. Phase 4: Muladhara Granthi Bheda -. do it no more than 10 times a day to avoid straining the frenulum! Eventually. II. Maha Mudra. you want to be able to do 50 repetitions. The Kundalini energy is awakened and raised (Maha Mudra). and Yoni Mudra are the tools to approach the last phase of Kriya Yoga. IV.Piercing the heart knot. Pranayama with short breath. The appearing of the internal sounds -. Let us anticipate a theoretical scheme. the bottom jaw is lowered to stretch the frenulum (the small fold of tissue under the tongue that attaches it to the base of the mouth). This phase is the most delicate work. While pressing the tongue against the roof of the mouth. Phase 2: Hridaya Granthi Bheda -. 1. This stretching effect should be felt clearly (see figure 2).especially the sound of a bell -. At the beginning. liberation attained.introduced in the next chapter. The entire procedure of 50 repetitions takes about 2 minutes (110-120 seconds) to complete. (A more in-depth discussion will be resumed in chapter 7). Many practice Talabya Kriya incorrectly by instinctively turning their tongue backwards (or keeping it vertical) but this 93 . and with the tip of the tongue touching the back of the upper teeth. Navi Kriya and mental Pranayama embody phase 3 of Kriya Yoga where the breath begins to calm down completely. by unfastening the knot located at Muladhara and at the eyebrows (Yoni Mudra). The tongue which has been pressed against the upper palate releases itself with a clicking sound and moves down into its natural position. I. Talabya Kriya Starting with the tongue in a relaxed position. the achievement of Kechari Mudra embodies phase 1 of Kriya Yoga. The tongue is then stuck out of the mouth and pointed toward the chin. The Kriya path is divided in four phases Phase 1: Jihuah (Jiwha) Granthi Bheda -. it is patiently guided through all Chakras and made to circulate (Pranayama with short breath) and finally. the practice of Kriya Pranayama (in three parts).Piercing the last obstruction that blocks the full merging into the "spiritual eye".Piercing the navel's knot. III. a map that can be appreciated by those students who love having a complete picture of all the phases of Kriya Yoga as they are conceived in this book.Raising the tongue. Phase 3: Navi Granthi Bheda-.begin to melt any obstacle tied with the transit of the energy from the higher Chakras to the lower part of the spine and vice versa. The technique of Talabya Kriya.

In the remaining cycles. During this ascent of awareness. However. This exercise. it should be possible to insert the tongue into the nasal pharynx cavity: this is called Kechari Mudra (see figure 4 in the next chapter). It is fine to chant the Mantra aloud during the first three cycles. 4. One ascent (Chakras 1. with the help of the hands. helps "generate" the best form of Kriya Pranayama. 2. performed with concentration. It is not known why this stretching of the frenulum reduces thought production. One which is well known one is wrapping a piece of cloth around the tongue and. 2. 3. 4. try to perceive the subtle radiation of each Chakra. Then chant "Om" in the medulla. Starting with Muladhara (first Chakra). 94 . Let a beginner not ask too many question about it. During this descent of awareness. 3. Talabya Kriya After some months of practicing Talabya Kriya regularly. 1) represent one cycle that lasts about 30 seconds. toward the tip of the nose. 2. it should continue to be practiced even after you are able to do Kechari Mudra. then do the same with the second Chakra and so on up to the cervical Chakra (Vishuddha) and Bindu. Om Japa Don't pay any attention to the breath. 1 Figure 2. then in the cervical Chakra and so on. do your best to intuitively touch the inner core of each Chakra. It will be described in detail in the next chapter. chant the Mantra "Om" while concentrating on it. all the way back down to Muladhara. It is very important to have the tongue tip touching the back of the upper teeth before pressing it against the upper palate. it can be chanted either aloud or mentally.cancels the whole effect. 1 In Hatha Yoga books there are different suggestions for lengthening the Fraenulum. Lahiri Mahasaya was absolutely against cutting the Fraenulum to obtain faster and easier results. Because Talabya Kriya creates a perceivable relaxing effect on the thinking process. 5 and Bindu) and one descent (medulla. Six to 12 cycles are performed. anyone practicing this technique can readily verify this. gently pulling (relaxing and repeating different times) the cloth both horizontally and also up. 5.

The awareness rises from the Muladhara along the spinal column toward the second Chakra. the tongue tip is turned back to touch the middle of the upper palate at the point where the hard palate becomes soft. Remarks a. We are going to explain its key details. though it is not easy to show how they are integrated into a harmonious whole. An unhurried exhalation of the same length as the inhalation. The awareness is in medulla oblongata. This heat seems to rise from the lower part of the abdomen. The mouth is closed. During the pause. the fourth. This should be a short pause (2-3-seconds). It acts directly on the energy (Prana) present in the body. the medulla oblongata and. One Kriya breath happens in the following way 1.3. along with the awareness the movement of the navel toward the inside. acts like a hydraulic pump to raise the energy (Prana) from the base of the spinal column up to the medulla oblongata and to Bindu (occipital region). 4. Here another 2-3-second pause is repeated and intimately lived as a moment of comfortable peace. The eyes are closed and relaxed but focused on the region between the eyebrows. Kriyabans can only reach this rhythm during long sessions. accompanies the movement of the energy back to the base of the spinal column. By refining this experience.if not. First Part of Kriya Pranayama: Mixing Prana and Apana Kechari Mudra is applied for those who can do it -. helping the activity of the mind to be suspended as well: a state of stability appears. 3. producing an unvoiced sound in the throat. A deep inhalation through the nose. there is a clear perception of the navel moving in toward the spine. 2. Kriya Acharyas have different didactic strategies to introduce it. if possible. No difficult visualization is required. your inner gaze is turned toward Bhrumadhya between the eyebrows. the fifth Chakra. The movement of the air is suspended briefly. Reference literature says perfect Kriya Pranayama is 80 breaths per hour -about 45 seconds per breath. the radiance of Kutastha appears as a blurred light or glow permeating the frontal part of the brain and that of Sahasrara as a slight sensation of crepuscular light permeating the upper part of the head. In this initial phase of Kriya Pranayama the energy cannot reach either 95 . the third. Kriya Pranayama (Spinal Breathing) Kriya Pranayama is the most important technique of Kriya Yoga. one feels the action of the diaphragm muscles and becomes aware of a heat increasing in the navel. During the last part of the exhalation. The path taken by the energy gradually reveals itself during practice. Beginners should set a rhythm of about 18-20 seconds per Kriya breath and complete 12 breaths in a natural and unhurried way (about 4 minutes). up to Bindu. The dynamic mind becomes static and is appeased. You are centered in medulla oblongata location.

As for the value of the pauses. now it tries to expand in all of the occipital region up to Bindu. When Kechari Mudra is being done correctly. Second Part of Kriya Pranayama: Om Japa in each Chakra While during the first part the awareness was in medulla oblongata. a person will be able to hear it within 4-5 meter radius -. However we do not expect sound perfection now. d. What is essential is bringing forth a continuous will of internal listening. The breathing we use during Kriya Pranayama is not a free breathing but a restricted breathing creating a clearly heard sound in the no means outside it. During exhalation. To be certain that your sound is correct. Om is mentally chanted in each Chakra as you return to Muladhara. b. 96 . A muffled sound will originate. and again in the medulla. this will happen in higher stages. c. the abdomen expands and during exhalation the abdomen is drawn in. the more you became aware of these states of stability. The sound in the throat while inhaling is like a quiet schhhh /ʃ/. During the pause. sooner or later. Om is mentally chanted (or more accurately "mentally placed") in each of the first five Chakras. the more your practice becomes might be correct for some form of Ujjayi but not for Kriya Pranayama. the exhaling sound will be flute-like: Sheee Sheee /ʃiː/. The energy is thus visualized flowing down along the back of the spinal column. The inhaling air is felt as moderately cool whereas the exhaling air is felt as moderately warm. The sound is similar to the amplified background noise of a loudspeaker. during inhalation. concentrate only on increasing the friction of the air flowing through your throat. It is incorrect raising the rib cage and shoulders. each Chakra is gently "touched" from the back. During inhalation. We keep a fixed purpose: to succeed in listening to the internal sounds (variations of Omkar sound). Awareness of inner sound must happen. without closing our ears. Increase its frequency. During the first breaths of Kriya Pranayama avoid chanting Om or another Mantra in each Chakra. We are going to discuss the meaning and the implications of this sound in the next chapter. the upper part of the lungs is filled two thirds full. in the point between the eyebrows. e. Focus all your attention on subtle sounds that come from within. as a consequence the rising energy is felt as moderately cool whereas the descending energy is felt as moderately warm. Do not disturb the employment of a great mental intensity during the inhalation to obtain the raising of the energy. There are plenty of video clips of yogis who make an horrible sound during Ujjayi. The breathing is mainly abdominal. Unfortunately you cannot refer to the many examples of Ujjayi Pranayama sound to be found on the web. During inhalation. They are using their vocal chords: this is not correct -. Your listening skills will improve and you will become more sensitive. Om is chanted in the medulla. While coming down. f. there is only a slight hiss during exhalation. If the environment is perfectly noiseless. rather than the audible sounds from outside.the region between the eyebrows nor Sahasrara.

hum like an electrical transformer. like a sensation of a liquid peace above or around the head. bringing the two eyebrows toward the center with a slight wrinkling of the forehead. One day. Probably. They are not physical sounds. during the second part it is focused in the occipital region.Each chanting of the syllable Om should be accompanied by an unswerving will of tracking down the echo of that vibration you are internally producing. (Lahiri Mahasaya in his well known portrait is showing this Mudra. The event of perceiving them is not produced by the intensity of a unique moment of deep concentration. Although the eyelids are closed or half-closed. phase 3 of Kriya Pranayama can be approached. Let us learn how to move the awareness in the upper part of the head. all one's being is at the top 97 . flute. they have nothing to do with the typical sounds of Kriya Pranayama produced by the air that passes down the back of the throat into the trachea and vice versa. A bystander can observe the white of the cornea under the iris because very often the inferior eyelids relax. the space between the eyebrows. the eyes look upward as much as possible. A sign one is heading in the right direction is a sense of mild pressure. one awakens to the realization of being actually listening to a sound of "running water". Third Part of Kriya Pranayama During the first part of Kriya Pranayama the awareness is in medulla oblongata. Only when you have reached the daily number of 48 Kriya breaths. drum. harp. Let us consider now a higher form of Shambhavi Mudra. should not conclude something is wrong. bell.) Through this form of Shambhavi Mudra. Maybe they have done an enormous effort whose fruits will be enjoyed during the next day's practice. He adds that it is continuous "as the oil that flows out of a container". Repeat the procedure at least 24 times. The light tension that is perceived in the muscles of the eyeballs gradually disappears and the position can be maintained rather easily. The internal sounds reveal the activity of the Chakras.. then skip to the second until you have completed 48 Kriya breaths. They appear in different forms: bumblebee. Always begin your practice with phase 1 for at least 12 breaths. it serves no purpose to wonder if this is the real Om sound or not.. no matter how feeble it may be). Shambhavi Mudra is usually defined as the act of concentrating on Bhrumadhya. but by the accumulation of effort manifested during the daily sessions of Kriya (the effort is the meticulous attention to any internal sound. Patience and constancy are required. Om sound is similar to the sound of running water or to that of waves breaking over the cliffs. it is just a signal that the real experience is approaching. possibly when Kechari Mudra is achieved.. Those who are not able to hear any internal sound. The only task of a kriyaban is being absorbed in the comforting sound of Omkar. Lahiri Mahasaya describes this sound as "produced by a lot of people who keep on striking the disk of a bell". Often a certain humming accompanies this pressure. They grab a kriyaban's awareness and lead it in depth without any danger of it getting lost. as if looking at the ceiling but without any head movement.

The practice reaches its maximum power and seems to have a life of its own. Om is chanted -. and in the point between the eyebrows. For every Om. A kriyaban repeats Navi Kriya four times. 98 . The sound of the breath is smooth and unbroken like the continuous pouring of oil from a bottle. 72. The chin's normal position is then resumed and Om is mentally chanted in reverse order from the point between the eyebrows to Muladhara. in the Bindu. You will perceive this. While doing the technique. Go on with it until you have completed the prearranged number of repetitions (60. while experiencing it. and so on). a calm energy is perceived gathering in the lower-middle part of the abdomen (the Prana current there is called Samana). The Mantra Om (ohng) is placed in the first five Chakras. The chin is then tilted down toward the throat cavity.aloud or mentally -. 4. you will not produce this sensation through your imagination! Your attitude is apparently passive. the thumbs apply a light pressure to the lumbar vertebrae.turns out to be as easy as a moment of rest. one's awareness slowly moves up along the spinal reaching 108 or 144 repetitions -. Om is chanted 75 times (a rough estimate is fine) in the navel (umbilicus) either aloud or mentally. This practice is a real jewel. time goes by without much notice and what could seem to be an exhausting task -. The hands are joined with the fingers interlocked.approximately 25 times in the third Chakra. The concentration shifts first to the Bindu and then to the third Chakra (moving downward in a straight line. This is one Navi Kriya (it lasts between 140-160 seconds). outside the body). The chin is then raised without straining but the muscles at the back of the neck are contracted. The hands are kept behind the back and joined by interlocking the fingers and the palms face upward with the pads of both thumbs touching. it represents the quintessence of beauty. and the pads of both thumbs are touching. and therefore active in an intelligent way. in actual fact sensitive. You will remark how the breath is rather slow. By no means should the breath be synchronized with the chanting of Om. palms face downward. It's like a plane emerging from the clouds into a clear transparent sky. You will enjoy the beautiful feeling of the fresh air that seems to come up through the spine and piercing each Chakra. Navi Kriya Using the same method described in Om Japa and without attempting to control the breath.of the head. Go on practicing the instructions given in the second part of Kriya Pranayama (chanting of Om in the prescribed places) save the center of awareness which is now in the upper part of the head. The thumbs lightly press the navel for each Om. and that of the warm exhaled air permeating each zone of the body from top to bottom. You will eventually have the impression of crossing a mental state which is like falling asleep then suddenly returning to full awareness realizing you are basking in a spiritual light.

Besides the melting sensation. After ascending to the Bindu. yellow…like the sequence of the rainbow's colors). Sometimes. third … and so on. One pauses only a short time in each one to vibrate the Mantra. Practicing Om Japa before Kriya Pranayama is designed to stimulate each Chakra. Remark Some do not understand the subtle difference between Om Japa and mental Pranayama. the practitioner first draws three deep breaths. pausing in each Chakra. the perception of a pleasurable sweet sensation is almost immediate. static Prana) is experienced in the seventh Chakra. The Chakras are like knots that can be untied if "touched" with one's concentration. "Sthir Tattwa" (calm. A kriyaban does not need all this stuff in order to perceive the reality of the Chakras. The spine is visualized as a tube along which the awareness moves up and down pausing in each spinal center. Mental Pranayama To enter a perfect physical and mental stillness as easily as possible. the secret lies in maintaining the awareness in each of them until a sensation of sweetness is felt . Sometimes. one is more passive.5. In some Yoga schools it is counseled to visualize the Chakra's specific color (red. When the awareness stays for at least half minute upon each one of them. it is more convenient to simply center your attention for 10-20 seconds on each Chakra starting with the first. This is the moment when a deep mental silence settles in the consciousness and in the body. In time a kriyaban gains the ability to single out the different rates of vibration of each Chakra. one may also perceive the subtle radiation of each Chakra in the body. Kriyabans do not feel they are practicing a technique but enjoying a few moments of soothing relaxation. each one of which has a particular number of petals with a letter of the Sanskrit alphabet on each petal. the results would be extraordinary. 99 . ending each with a fast sigh-like exhalation. They may be also visualized as lotuses. orange. (One complete round lasts about 2-4 minutes. Om (ohng) may be mentally chanted in the Chakras. a natural feeling leading to the realization that the Chakras are sustaining each part of the body's if the Chakra were "melting". During mental Pranayama. Some inner sounds as well as hues of light pouring forth from their locations deepens the contact with the Omkar dimension. Lahiri Mahasaya called this state Paravastha or Kriyar Paravastha "the state that comes after the action of Kriya". Tranquility. This is a matter of pure awareness. a light is perceived in the upper part of the head and a kriyaban is able to keep his awareness there a long time without feeling any fatigue. one begins the descent. If. the pauses are much longer. The process of rising and descending through the Chakras is carried on as long as it is comfortable. through sheer willpower. moving to the second. which is crucial in reaching the final goal of Kriya. such a state were brought to awareness as often as possible amid one's daily activities.) This is the most pleasing part of the routine. more willing to perceive than to stimulate.

most kriyabans will not be able to do the forward stretch without risking back or knee injury. Continue holding the breath and mentally chant Om 2 in the region between the eyebrows 6 to 12 times. Some schools insist on this detail and explain that by repeating this action on each leg the balance between the two channels Ida and Pingala is improved. the energy is brought up the cerebrospinal tube to the center of the head (Ajna Chakra). the consonant "m" in "Om" is heard. "Om" is a pure vowel sound and the ‘m' is silent. the index and middle fingers are behind it and the left hand cups the sole of the foot. keep the outstretched leg bent at the knee until the position feels comfortable. return to the starting position and with a long exhalation. the big toe is grasped while one is in the outstretched position. Some schools suggest drawing the knee (or both knees.g. This helps to keep the back straight and make the inner sound of the Anahata Chakra audible. right heel near the perineum and the left leg outstretched. This pressure is the best means of stimulating one's awareness of the Muladhara Chakra in the coccygeal region at the root of the spine. ‘ahm'. the mouth is not completely closed . In this outstretched position. like Om namo bhagavate … or Om namah Shivaya …. Repeat the procedure a 3rd time with both legs outstretched to complete one cycle of Maha Mudra. both toes are grasped with the interlocked hands. When the procedure is repeated with both legs outstretched. While holding the breath. A variation is to squeeze the toenail of the big toe with the thumb of the right hand. visualize sending the warm energy down to the base of the spinal column. While holding the breath in the outstretched position. This is a very simple and easily acquired sensation so there is no need to complicate it. As we have seen. Maha Mudra One starts by bending the left leg under the body so the left heel is as near as possible to the perineum (between the scrotum and anus for males and between the anus and cervical opening for females) with the right leg fully extended in front. The ‘m' is silent because the ‘o' sound is prolonged. Maha Mudra must be comfortable and it must not hurt! Initially.thus creating the nasal sound "ng". Holding the breath. The interlocked fingers are placed around the knee to exert pressure on it. before the third movement) against the body so the thigh is as close to the chest as possible during inhalation. Ideally. the chin is pressed naturally against the chest. In this technique. At the end. Repeat the entire procedure with the leg positions reversed. but not necessarily. contract the anal and the abdominal muscles and draw in slightly the latter so the navel is drawn toward the lumbar center. 100 . stretch forward (in a relaxed way) and interlock hands so you can grasp your big toe. you want the left heel exerting pressure on the perineum. It must not be pronounced like the ‘om' in Tom e. Through a deep inhalation. Repeat this three-movement cycle (requiring about 60-80 seconds) two more times for a total of 9 movements. When pronouncing Indian Mantras.6. (A variation is that the thumbs 2 The correct pronunciation for ‘Om' is like the ‘ong' in ‘song' but drawn out and with the ‘o' pronounced like its alphabet name. To avoid pain or injury.

When it feels natural to inhale. Throughout the practice. If you are able to do Kechari Mudra. the nostrils with the middle fingers. prop them up somehow. In due course. You will feel a striking difference. 3 When applied simultaneously with the body bent forward and without using excessive contraction. one will be able to perceive the whole Sushumna Nadi as a radiant channel. third and second Chakra. Go on like that. being conscious of each movement of it -. repeating the procedure between Muladhara and the fourth Chakra. When it becomes natural to have an inhalation. During this special light3 We have given the definition of Bandhas in chapter 1 101 . begin your practice by calming the whole psychophysical system with a short Kriya routine (a few Kriya Pranayama breaths as well as a short practice of Navi Kriya). press the tongue firmly on the highest point inside the nasal pharynx – otherwise leave the tongue in its normal relaxed position. When it feels natural to exhale. pause an instant in the second Chakra. Close every "opening" in the head -. inhale only what is necessary. pause in Muladhara.almost imperceptible. Pranayama with Short Breath Pranayama with short breath is based upon letting the breath move freely. This is the indication that the breath is internalized as in Kriya Yoga should be. the eyelids with the index fingers. your breath will be very calm. fourth. After that. before going to bed. exhale. Yoni Mudra At night. Practice the following exercise and repeat the test at the end. each of them ending with a fast and complete an exhalation like a sigh. Repeat more than one cycle. This action completes that of Maha Mudra and prepares you for Yoni Mudra. if necessary.pauses included -. both elbows are parallel to the floor and point out to the side. pause in Muladhara. After having drawn three deep breaths. observing it. inhale. When it feels natural to exhale. raise the energy with a deep inhalation into the central part of the head.the ears with the thumbs. 7.and coordinating with it the energy's movement from the Muladhara to every Chakras and vice versa. Focus your attention on the Muladhara Chakra. Maha Mudra incorporates all the three Bandhas. fifth. pause in the third Chakra. Muladhara and the fifth Chakra (then Bindu. This fact invites the energy to move freely upwards through Sushumna and downwards into each part of the body. exhale. until you perceive that your breath is very calm -. medulla. 8. Do not let them drop. the lips with the ring and the little fingers -.of each hand press the respective toenails and the index and middle fingers hold the toe from behind). it helps one to be aware of both ends of Sushumna and produces the feeling of an energetic current moving up the all the energy "lights up" the region between the eyebrows. If you place your finger under both nostrils.) One cycle is made of 10 short breaths. the ingoing or outgoing breath will touch barely your finger. as quickly as per instinct (about one second).

Inhaling deeply and holding the breath usually causes discomfort after a few seconds. exhales a very small quantity of air. bringing down the awareness along the spine. a beginner could feel uncomfortable and nervous by breaking mental Pranayama off. Exhale. he draws the eyelids down with the index fingers and applies pressure on the corners of the eyes . a kriyaban fully plugs all the head openings except the nostrils. Here we have two examples of simple and extremely enjoyable routines: • Maha Mudra • Navi Kriya • Yoni Mudra • Talabya Kriya • Kriya Pranayama • Mental Pranayama or: • Talabya Kriya • Maha Mudra • Navi Kriya • Kriya Pranayama • Mental Pranayama + Yoni Mudra at night 102 . forcing is always to be avoided. Traditional instruction advises increasing the number of Om repetitions by one per day up to a maximum of 200. does not work for everyone. then immediately closes the nostrils. to 8: Talabya Kriya • Om Japa • Kriya Pranayama • Navi Kriya • Mental Pranayama • Maha Mudra • Pranayama with short breath • Yoni Mudra. On the contrary. Of course. Suggestions about the Routine The complete routine that we have already implicitly given by numbering the techniques from 1. concentration on the point between the eyebrows and the repetition of Om several times can be enjoyed to its fullest. At the end of a moderate inhalation (not a typical Kriya Pranayama one but a shorter one). The light condenses into a golden ring. Here is a short suggestion on how to reduce the discomfort and make it possible to deepen the practice.witnessing act. observe the light of the "spiritual eye" that is gathering and intensifying. Yoni Mudra is usually performed only once. In this situation.this would be harmful and serve no purpose! If a kriyaban is distracted by the pressure of the index fingers on the eyelids.on the upper cheekbones. An expert kriyaban is able to use Maha Mudra right after mental Pranayama. followed by Pranayama with short breath to enter the breathless state. after Kriya Pranayama. the index fingers must not put any pressure on the eyes -. It is natural to utilize Maha Mudra and Navi Kriya as preliminary techniques and avoid. Hold the breath as long as is comfortable and until the necessity to breathe out distracts your attention. By holding the breath and mentally repeating Om (Ohng) several times. techniques requiring movement. The thoracic muscles are to be relaxed as if one intended to begin a new inhalation: this will give the sensation that the breath has become quiet in the area between the throat and the point between the eyebrows .

Kriya Pranayama is usually practiced 12-24 times. late afternoon before dinner. Inside the perfect transparency of an inner order. It is like a spiral which gradually and systematically takes care of all the levels of one's being: it is a healing process. One has the impression that nothing can get in the way and that even the greatest difficulties dissolve. Then Pranayama with short breath is enjoyed as much as possible.until I remember to relax and stop trying to hold on to it. And I can't feel anything but gratitude for every single moment of my stupid little life. You must never forget to give the highest importance to the soothing phase of mental Pranayama. before lunch at noon. It is a diffuse calmness. Yoni Mudra generates such a concentration of energy in the point between the eyebrows that the quality of the ensuing sleep changes for the better. from a marked alienation from reality to a panic attack.. (slightly modified from American Beauty.. A Kriya routine which does not end with mental Pranayama is like an orchestra tuning their instruments and then leaving the stage! It is the phase that brings everything together. Don't try to practice only the third part of Kriya Pranayama: a routine which is totally based on a strong concentration on the Sahasrara is not appropriate for beginning or medium level students. Occasionally (for example during a longer meditation once in a week) you can add more repetitions. The ideal moments for practicing Kriya are before breakfast. 1999) " 103 . then Yoni Mudra. In reality. In other words.. and the Last Reality is revealed. One is born to Kriya through the engaging practice of mental Pranayama: it projects us into sheer heaven and its beauty overflows our lives. My heart feels it's about to burst. film. the awareness becomes transparent. Its value becomes apparent during the difficult moments of life when important decisions have to be taken.. it can be done anytime! However. all problems are solved.. Developing a strong magnet in Sahasrara through the third part of Kriya Pranayama is the most powerful way of stimulating the Kundalini awakening. ". Yoni Mudra at night can be experienced in the following way: after calming one's thoughts and relaxing one's body with some deep breaths. the technique is best done in the deep calmness of the night and when one is totally and perfectly relaxed.Some teachers claim that Yoni Mudra should not be practiced during the day. Then one remains concentrated as long as possible in the point between the eyebrows trying to perceive the light in Kutastha.) You can experience all a range of negative moods. Sometimes I feel I'm seeing it all at once and I'm overwhelmed. after crossing the subconscious layers. This implies that a lot of material from the subconscious mind is brought to the surface. Maha Mudra is practiced. therefore only the first and the second part of it. In the beginning. one's awareness may succeed in reaching the socalled "superconscious" state. and at night at least 2-3 hours after eating. (See also the discussion in chapter 9. And then it flows through me like rain. it's hard to stay angry when there's so much beauty in the world. the ripples in the mind's lake are stilled. the mind is at rest and silent and gains the energy necessary to be more acutely alert. in that occasion it is fine to experience the third part of Kriya Pranayama also.

I have recently discovered that the thread of similar ideas can also be found in Swami Sadhananda Giri's Kriya Yoga: Its Mystery and Performing Art (1998).CHAPTER 7 FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT THE FIRST KRIYA Without getting beyond the field of the techniques of First Kriya initiation. there are some results that begin to appear. However. in Kriya Yoga Vijnan there are a few pages which are a real treasure. before sleep. some instants of Stillness are enjoyed at the two extremities of the spinal chord. Understanding. at any time of the day. The ideas contained in it are precious to inspire the personal practice. During those intervals. Prana and Apana merge one into the other. The right moment to study this chapter is after having practiced Kriya Yoga daily for at least 3-6 months.sivabooks. another disciple of Sri Yukteswar. A subtle alchemy happens continuously during the practice of 4 This work appeared on the Internet for some months and then it was removed. 4 Most books about Kriya contain tedious rhetoric and innumerable long session when it is comfortable. A_THEORY Kriya Yoga Vijnan by Swami Nityananda Giri contains a concise and comprehensive theoretical outlook of Kriya Yoga. from a theoretical point of view. After inhalation and after exhalation. plus the practice of Yoni Mudra at night. the vision is very rational and convincing. The second is a document written by Sri Sailendra Bejoy Dasgupta. The first contains a few notes taken from conversation with Swami Satyananda Giri. what is happening is useful to avoid hindering this process. rather to guide it wisely toward the yearned-for goal. We know that the Apana energy is raised from the base of the spine to the higher Chakras while the Prana energy ["Prana" is here intended as that particular energy operating in the zone of the lungs] is brought down back to the base of the spine. Two other important works are: Kriya Quotes from Swami Satyananda (2004) and Sri Sailendra Bejoy Dasgupta's Light of Kriya Yoga (2008). Daily means once a day -. a disciple of Sri Yukteswar. This chapter is devoted to the students who have shown their commitment to the practice of Kriya.there may be one or two interesting lines. we shall discuss now some more developments in the theory and practice of Kriya. Now it can be acquired from www. 104 . Following is a summary of how these three authors conceive the four phases or levels of Kriya Yoga. all soaked in useless references to abstruse philosophical theories . According to Swami Nityananda Giri phase 1 of Kriya is embodied in an event that happens during the performance of Kriya Pranayama. whilst the rest can be When Kriya initiates carry out for months the instructions shared in the previous chapter.

the breath seems to disappear while the awareness of the Divine Sound and Light are intensified greatly. What does the "Pre-Reverse Order" mean? From the moment of our conception. In those instants a kriyaban has the first glimpse of the state of Stability that will be expanded in the following phases of Kriya. an act of will directs it down inside the spine. This allows to experience the five Tattwas. During inhalation. The Tattwas (Sanskrit) are the five subtle elements: earth. Phase 4 (Dhyana Kriya) is based upon moving the mind up and down the spine but remaining in the Kevala Kumbhaka (effortless breathlessness) state. the heartrate slows down. to enter through the nose. This is a philosophical theory that claims that everything in the universe can be broken down into five primal energies. is the vision of Swami Satyananda Giri. Phase 3 (Thokar Kriya) allows the kriyaban to perceive and become one with the element "air" (the fourth of five Tattwas) which has its seat in the fourth Chakra. piercing of knot of the dorsal center 3. To a kriyaban the theory of the Tattwas is not a theme of useless speculation. whose intimate essence we experience in our last journey toward the Absolute Consciousness. The lofty state attained in the heart Chakra by means of the practice of Thokar is now recreated in each Chakra. allows a person enter a sublime state. the air would tend to go out through the nose. By the repetition of this process. raising the tongue 2. They are conceived as a concrete series of states of consciousness. Prana devours Apana and. Apana (accumulated inside the inhaled air) is merged (sacrificed) into Prana (which dwells in the higher part of the thorax). Then. This sensation is decisive for the perception of Internal sound and spiritual light. Phase 2 of Kriya is identified with the practice of Omkar Kriya where the Vasudeva Mantra ("Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya") is introduced. as it is natural. mind and Apana come up through the spinal column toward Ajna. Awareness of the Chakras is intensified. air and ether (space). which is recharged with Prana.Kriya Pranayama. piercing of knot of the navel 4. And it is this very final procedure that blows the last shell of illusion. tuning with the air Tattwa. an act of will directs it at the base of the spinal column. vice versa. Prana dissolves into Apana. Both Prana and Apana are dragged downward. fire. therefore. Slightly different but not in contradiction with the previous one. A new volume of Prana is thus merged with into Apana (which dwells in the lower part of the spine). when. water. When breath and awareness reach Muladhara and a new inhalation is starting. Now. forcing it to rise inside the spinal channel. the attention is firmly fixed on the location of each Chakra. it is natural that a fresh volume of air. Kundalini began a slow journey of descent starting from the cells 105 . piercing of knot of the coccygeal center This "Downward journey" is the main feature of Kriya Yoga and it is said following a "Pre-Reverse Order". Both Prana and Apana are dragged upwards. The four phases are 1.

Then the instruction of applying a particular kind of pressure or strike on the Anahata Chakra is given. This matches the definition of Navi Kriya which is not only made of concentration upon the navel and the lumbar Chakra but it is also made of mentally placing Om in each Chakra up and down the spine while the breath is free and is calming down progressively. To explain how the Muladhara-knot is 106 . In the Kundalini awakening. pervading the chest area and establishing boundless peace in the mind. But most important is the experience of Spiritual Light. This means that this Light is also revealed at the different Chakra's location. If during Kriya the mind does not think about other things and no mistakes are made in chanting Om in each Chakra. Piercing the knot of the heart Chakra is accomplished through Pranava -. piercing the knot of the navel. finally resting in Muladhara. The second level of Thokar Kriya consists in applying a physical and mental blow over and over in the heart area. the direction of the energy flow is reversed. the door of Sushumna is opened. In the stillness of witnessing that Light. Swami Satyananda Giri shows that the Higher Kriyas have been designed to gradually attain the highest stage in tuning with Omkar. the lumbar center. In Swami Satyananda's vision. peace etc. Pranava is the essence of phase 2 of Kriya. Utilizing the syllables of the well known Vasudeva Mantra along with the practice of making a short Kumbhaka in each different Chakra (Omkar Kriya) a profound sound like that of a long-sustaining bell is experienced. he explains that it is the spontaneous flow of joy emanating from the sound of Om that is the aim of the kriyaban. it seem that everything has already happened during phase 2. then a peaceful state of mind will established. With the first level. Swami Satyananda Giri explains that if in Kriya Pranayama the practitioners would not focus on the first six Chakras and practice Japa in each one of them. they would only do an ordinary breathing exercise. Breathless state is achieved because breathing is controlled by the cardiac plexus. This technique (Thokar Kriya) has two levels. The realization of the inner sound.the Omkar sound. Kriya is empty of substance. is accomplished through Navi Kriya. Therefore the four-step-Kriya "Downward journey" which is the preparation to the Kundalini awakening is said to follow a "Pre-Reverse Order". at the point between the eyebrows and at Sahasrara. Sthir Vayu (tranquil breath) moves to the next center. In this way Kriya Pranayama is continuously perfected.forming our brain and medulla into the cells of our new spine. The author remarks that it seems difficult or impossible to rotate 200 times one's head in one breath at one stretch. Phase 4. and this would result in a tamasic state. The practice of the Third Kriya is taught for guiding the vibration of Pranava down the spine toward Muladhara. Very suggestively. is accomplished through the full experience of the Omkar's light aspect. merely sitting and thinking about all kinds of trivial things. Raising the tongue is accomplished by the help of Kechari Mudra. With this procedure very deep levels of the Omkar Sound are revealed. experiences of happiness. Phase 3. Without Om. Having crossed the heart knot. piercing the coccygeal knot. He explains that the secret is to begin with 12 rotations and increase by one every day. sorrow. are felt emanating from the heart Chakra.

a dot. The nectar (amrit) trickles down through the tongue into body and spine. Prana must always remain in Kutastha. He explains also that once the Fourth Kriya has been mastered.or Jihva -. It is also accomplished when the tongue tip is simply turned back to touch the middle of the upper palate at the point where the hard palate becomes soft. absorbed in the "Equilibrium State". has begun. He explains that Omkar sound appears like the sound of the a multitude of bees. Phase 3 instead of being described as "piercing the knot of the navel" is here identified with the result of the strong procedure of Thokar utilized in phase 2 and is called Omkar Kriya. like those envisaged by phase 3 107 . There is no information about phase 4 of Kriya. It is also accomplished by Talabya Kriya where the tongue is horizontal. The mind has to be gradually detached from all thoughts. eventually plunging into Nirvikalpa Samadhi. attached to the palate and the frenulum stretched. It is also accomplished by certain other Kriya techniques. We are not kept connected with the reservoir of energy in the Sahasrara region. Through Thokar we have perceived inner light in the heart Chakra and realized that this light shines also in Kutastha. This constitutes the royal path to success in Kriya discipline. and then of a thunder. but the fact that it is a refining of the Omkar and Thokar procedures. The author concludes that after completing the required number of Kriyas. The author explains that after raising the Prana into Kutastha. The downward journey of static Prana from Sahasrara toward Muladhara. The piercing of the tongue knot is achieved not only through Kechari Mudra proper. He divines processes of Fifth. He explains that a kriyaban endeavors to constantly remain immersed in the holy Omkar sound. Scheme Adopted in this Book Phase 1: Piercing the Tongue Knot (Jihuah -. opening each knot and dissolving all obstacles. Kechari Mudra eliminates the gap between the brain and the body and lets the energy circulate (in a clearly perceivable way) inside the body. If it falls below the throat. the kriyaban does not need any more guidance. refining gradually into a note like that of a flute.Granthi Bheda) The tongue knot consists in the physiological fact that our tongue is normally not able to touch the uvula and certain centers in the nasal pharynx. Sixth and other higher Kriyas for himself in order to remain continuously immersed in the Eternal Tranquility. the performer has to sit quiet. a kriyaban practices a particular form of Japa there.broken and Kundalini awakened. Sri Sailendra Bejoy Dasgupta's conception is quite similar. the author departs from a precise fact. the kriyaban perceives different lights at each center in Sushumna. With this revelation. The first two phases are described in the same way. it must be raised again. it becomes the tiny white star that illuminates the path of Eternal Freedom. Although it appears in the heart Chakra. After phase 3 we encounter the revelation of the Tranquil and True Light in the form of a "Bindu". It closes the circuit of the spine.

Phase 2: Piercing the Heart Knot (Hridaya Granthi Bheda) This phase comprises the following parts: I. Pacifying Prana at these precise locations is the very nucleus of the action of Kriya. A particular state appears where the highest stage of tuning with Omkar becomes possible. Maha Mudra. This happens by uniting Prana and Apana in the navel region. Pranayama with short breath and Yoni Mudra. Distributing the static Prana to all the Chakras. Some mystics have observed that the process of Samadhi begins in the navel center -. This is achieved by Thokar Kriya (basic level). Such center. Deepening the previous state. and spiritual energies are gathered and blended. Some Yoga literature identify piercing the knot of the navel with opening the Manipura Chakra but this is not correct. The lower Dantian or "The field of cinnabar" is the place where the sexual. obtaining.and 4 of Kriya Yoga. the breathless state. the awareness of a distant sound of a long-sustaining bell fills one's awareness. This event has been designated as the: "Cultivation of the spiritual embryo" or of the 108 . when the time is ripe. It is further explained that we have three Dantian. III. means to be born to the spiritual life. Piercing the knot of the navel means reaching with the awareness the Dantian center. introduced by the Taoist Internal Alchemy it is not just a theoretical hypothesis but a tangible reality. II. It is also fostered by many other techniques like Navi Kriya. the intervals of Kumbhaka are gradually extended. It is located about two and one-half inches below the belly button and about one and one-half inches inside: it can be visualized as a ball about one and one-half inches in diameter. Intensifying the Omkar experience by strong stimulation of the heart Chakra. The same procedure is intensified through the practice of the advance form of Thokar. Phase 3: Piercing the Navel (Third Chakra) Knot (Nabhi Granthi Bheda) This phase comprises the following parts: I. the next is in the heart region (middle Dantian) and a third (upper Dantian) is to be found in the region between the eyebrows. from Sahasrara to Muladhara.which is essentially a variation of Kriya Pranayama. Piercing the navel knot through the action of Navi Kriya. Awakening the Omkar perception. It happens also by unswerving listening to the flute-like sound of breath during Kriya Pranayama with Kechari Mudra.actually they mean the Dantian center. It contains our unique. To settle into this zone. The afore described center in the abdomen is called lower Dantian. This generally happens in the second part of Kriya Pranayama and in Omkar Kriya -. II. individual vibration. means to be born to the spiritual life. It is explained that to settle into this zone. love. after they are activated and balanced through Kriya Pranayama. the "note" which embodies our will to live in the physical body.

the vibration which is created in the Dantian ascends spontaneously into the heart region. energetic and physical planes appears. This process is also called the Dhyana (meditation) phase of Kriya Yoga. The final result happens after years of serious commitment.the current will then automatically move by itself and the joy experienced will be indescribable.) This happens through Yoni Mudra and through the Fourth Kriya technique. which is called Omkar Gayatri Kriya. This is the highest form of Pranayama. Phase 4: Piercing the Root and Rudra Knots (Muladhara Granthi Bheda) This phase comprises the following parts: I. spontaneous halting of breathing with the air out of the lungs. "The birth of the golden flower". Piercing the knot of Muladhara by inviting Kundalini to enter Sushumna. By repeating this procedure you enter the Samadhi state but only for few instants."elixir of immortality". "Coming back to the center". The energy moves by itself in a great circulation. P. During the epoch of our life when we are occupied with this procedure. III. "The creation of the dazzling gem". The distinctive feature of the mastering of the third phase. II. Piercing the Rudra knot (the point between the eyebrows. Perfecting Pranayama up to experience it in the breathless state. This state is called: "Bahir (external) Kevala Kumbhaka" -effortless. a great immobility in the mental. describes it with these words: ". is the respiratory suspension." The Taoist Internal Alchemy hints at this great event as a spontaneous phenomenon of circulation of energy in the body.. The Omkar experience as internal light is achieved -.this event will be crucial in piercing the Muladhara knot. Final liberation (moksha) is not attained in one day. 109 . Be deepening the practice of Navi Kriya. This great event embodies the last part of the spiritual path. This happens by moving from Bahir (external) Kevala Kumbhaka to Antar (internal) Kevala Kumbhaka.Y. It illuminates the space of the heart (the middle Dantian) and reveals one's fundamental nature.. (the Macrocosmic Orbit) which has vast psychological implications. The nature of the breath changes. many splendid experiences will happen and the last internal obstacles will be cleared one after another. The "true serenity" manifests there.

which will appear as isolated from the body of the tongue.Piercing the Muladhara knot ■ Maha Mudra ————————————— 2. One day. After several months of regular practice of Talabya Kriya. Whereas during Kechari Mudra you see only the root of the tongue: it is the uvula that comes forward.Spreading the static Prana to each Chakra. then for a few minutes a day. This is possible because the soft palate (the part from which the uvula hangs) is soft and movable and when the tip of the tongue is able to enter a centimeter or so into the nasal pharynx. a kriyaban may decide it is time to attempt Kechari Mudra. By opening the mouth in front of a mirror. from Sahasrara to Muladhara ■ Mental Pranayama 3.Piercing the heart knot by ■ Kriya Pranayama Part 2 awakening the Omkar perception 2. we shall discuss in detail how to achieve Kechari Mudra. 110 . This prevents the tongue from slipping out and returning to its usual flat position.Deepening the previous practice up to the breathless state PHASE 4 1. on removing the fingers.Purpose of each phase PHASE 1 Piercing the tongue knot Practices Higher Kriyas ■ Kechari Mudra (either simplified Use of Mantra and Micro Thokar on or proper form). 5 5 Talabya Kriya and Kechari Mudra are completely different! (Compare figure 3 with figure 2 in chapter 6). the tip of the tongue will remain "trapped" in that position. during the first part of Talabya Kriya. If so. The test is whether the tip of the tongue can touch the uvula.Perfecting Pranayama up to ■ Taking Pranayama with short ————————————— experience it in the breathless state breath as a starting point 3. Talabya Kriya the crown and on the subtle centers ■ Kriya Pranayama (first and third of the head (see 3rd & 4th Kriyas) part) 2nd Kriya part 1: Omkar Kriya PHASE 2 1. This is the turning point. it creates a hook.Piercing the navel knot 2nd Kriya part 2 & 3: Thokar Kriya (basic level and advanced level) ————————————— 3rd Kriya part 1: Mental Omkar Kriya 3rd Kriya part 2: Micro Thokar ■ Navi Kriya 2. use the fingers to push the base of the tongue inward until the tip goes beyond the uvula and touches the hard palate above it. notice the hollow parts at the sides of the Fraenulum.Piercing the heart knot by guiding the Prana into the heart Chakra ————————————— PHASE 3 1.Piercing the Rudra knot ■ Yoni Mudra 4th Kriya: Omkar Gayatri Kriya B_KECHARI MUDRA Before considering some important variations and developments of the fundamental techniques of First Kriya.

I cannot comment since I haven't had the experience nor. Literature on Kriya Yoga explains that in order to have this experience. After approximately three weeks of practicing in this way. one achieves stage 2 where the tongue reaches the junction of the nasal passage inside the hole in the palate. The sense of irritation and the increase in salivation are soon left behind and from then on the practice of Kriya Pranayama with Kechari Mudra becomes easy and comfortable. The tip of the tongue reaches this small area and will remain "stuck" there comfortably. with the tip of the tongue. There will still be enough space left in the cavity to inhale and exhale through the nose. it is possible to experience a great attraction toward the region between the eyebrows along with the sensation of having reached. "Nectar". It is stated in Kriya literature that the tongue can also be pushed further up so that its tip touches a higher center in the upper part of the pharynx. Lahiri Mahasaya's sentence can be understood symbolically and it refers to the rising of the energy.despite some discomfort such as an increase in salivation. The same literature also affirms that through Kechari one is able to perceive "Amrita". As any good anatomy book will reveal. Even if the following information leaves me perplexed. There are two main stages of Kechari Mudra. have I even tried to have it. and occasional interruptions to reestablish the position -the real Kechari Mudra will be achieved. I share it for the sake of accuracy and completeness. After several months of tireless practice of the just described stage 1. I must admit. As for the importance of sipping the nectar. by extending the tongue to its limit. Actually. The tongue will be able to insert itself into the nasal-pharynx cavity in the upper palate. The soft tissue above the holes in the nose is alluded to in Kriya literature as the "uvula above the uvula". you should be able to reach the same position without using the fingers. a higher position. the 111 . by striving each day to practice at least 6-12 Kriya Pranayama with the tongue in this position -. the tongue that fills up the nasal pharynx cannot extend any further. Kechari Mudra Henceforth.Figure 3. swallowing. the elixir of life which is a sweet tasting fluid trickling down from the brain onto the tongue and into the body.

the Omkar experience acquires the dynamism of Kundalini. Some schools call it the Shakti Mantra. and the soft tissue above the nasal septum. moments of pure calmness and mental silence fill the practitioner's entire being! Sometimes without any additional yogic practice. inexplicable explosions of inner joy appear in unpredictable ways. Indeed. Kechari stops the internal chatter and gives the mind an essential rest. In Kriya literature it is said that those who realize a perfect Pranayama. the soul travels through the spinal cord and burns in the joy of Samadhi. Cultivating the perfection of this sound. a small asperity in the roof of the nasopharynx under the pituitary gland. Well. during daily activities. Practicing Kriya Pranayama in this way and enjoying its aftereffects is an enchanting and astonishing experience. can achieve everything through it. the sound vanishes. Literature on Kriya Yoga explains that when this event happens. these are often forgotten and the practitioner does not care about these things anymore.tip of the tongue should touch three specific points: the uvula. means creating the best basis to arouse the Om sound without moving to the second phase of Kriya Pranayama.) Kechari Mudra can be compared to an electrical bypass of the mind's energy system. the exhalation arising in the nasal pharynx has a fine flute-like sound like a faint whistle. Kechari Mudra enables a kriyaban to take a giant step toward perfecting Kriya Pranayama. concentrating firmly on it. and causes the life force to be withdrawn from the thought process. this in itself is a major accomplishment! At times. the positive euphoria is so overwhelming that it cannot be contained (like finding Aladdin’s magic lamp). It is explained that when the real nectar sensation manifests. The mind works in a more restrained way. Silence and transparency begin to become the feature of one's consciousness. He described it as "a razor with which cuts off everything related to the mind". (Although such explanations may at first be fascinating for the kriyabans. The exercise can be repeated several times during the day. During Kriya Pranayama with Kechari Mudra. then Kriya Pranayama with Kechari Mudra and flute sound matches that principle. We close with an important remark. if we dream of a faultless Kriya Pranayama. a flavor will be tasted on the tongue's surface. As soon as you achieve Kechari Mudra 112 . one of the best moments in a kriyaban’s life. When distraction and anxiety arises. Blowing gently on the edge of a sheet of paper approximates this sound. each thought becomes more concrete and precise. after an initial period of intense excitement. It has the power to cut out any external distracting factors including thoughts and comes at the maximal point of relaxation. The tip of the tongue should rotate on these spots for at least 20-30 seconds. It changes both the path and the direction of Prana flow. in the manner of sipping a liquid. It has been likened to the "flute of Krishna". Modesty is always welcome but when this result is achieved. one should focus on it while keeping the tongue in contact with one of the centers described above. Lahiri Mahasaya described it as "similar to blowing air through a keyhole". then.

feeling its coolness touching each Chakra from Muladhara to Vishuddha. Variations of Kriya Pranayama In comparison to the already explained Kriya Pranayama in three parts. the current comes up over the forehead. Variation 2. medulla. Pranayama with Aswini Mudra Aswini Mudra means contracting repeatedly the muscles at the base of the spine with the rhythm of about two contractions per second. C_VARIATIONS We shall describe some interesting variations of Kriya Pranayama. under fontanelle. the following variations can be defined "simplifications". then medulla. one might think of making one's routine intricate and unnatural. under the cranial bones. Vishuddha. While applying the following instructions. during that week. During the first part of the exhalation. 6 6 While learning the technique. during the first week of its employment. with time. If one has a self learning instinct. from Vishuddha to Muladhara. They are to be practiced with mouth closed and. Each detail intensifies the power of one specific phase of Kriya. yet they might be inspiring and useful. then bends and moves backwards over the brain. possibly. exhalation begins. then medulla until it reaches the point between the eyebrows. After a short pause with the awareness totally focused in the point between the eyebrows. abstaining from driving and from any work implying a significant percentage of risk. visualizing the breath coming up through Sushumna. Variation 1.(assuming that one keeps this position each day for an average of at least five minutes). I believe that one should not add simultaneously different technical details: it is important to experience each one separately and utilize each one for at least one week before adding the next one. Navi Kriya and Maha Mudra. the contraction involves only the sphincter 113 . a yogi contracts the buttock muscles. with the tongue in Kechari Mudra. The exhalation is completed by visualizing the breath coming down through the back of the spinal column. Om mentally is chanted in each one of this points. Muladhara.. there will be no problem in making the routine flow natural. engraves it in your awareness and therefore should be gradually digested and integrated into your personality. The throat sounds are those we have already explained. piercing Bindu... you may experience a feeling of "dizziness" where the mental faculties seem to be fogged up. Om is mentally chanted in Bindu. perineum or even the entire pelvic region also. You must be prepared for this eventuality and consider. . Circuit inside and on the back of Sushumna Inhale. Feel the warmth of the breath touching each Chakra at the back.

II. it is essential to be unshakeable and go ahead with it. You will feel that the energy is pushed from medulla into Kutastha. It is in this moment that Mula Bandha is practiced intensely.A wise procedure is to practice Aswini Mudra intensively and continuously during Kriya Pranayama. Then the exhalation begins.this is just our sensation. It gently pushes the Apana current upward to the navel region where it meets Prana. if achieved. even if one can devote only five minutes to the practice of Kriya. it should decrease in intensity and become like a slight internal contraction of the inferior part of the spine -. During the last instants of inhalation. while a mental pressure is exerted on the lower part of the spine (we have only one long contraction and not a series of contraction and release like in Aswini Mudra. Variation 3. Kechari Mudra. by going on impassively. one has the certainty that something positive is happening. The purpose is to create the perception of Kutastha. At a certain point. Simultaneously internal light is perceived spreading from Kutastha to the upper part of the brain. I. the tongue is pushed upward and forward. the breath is held and the eyebrows are raised. Rate 2:3 An important school considers the 2:3 ratio (inhalation:exhalation) much more natural of the already discussed 1:1. cooperates with this process: during the Mula Bandha thrust. subsequently. the power created in Kutastha will kindle the great golden-white light of the spiritual eye. If this procedure appears annoying and disturbing. before doing Mula Bandha. comes down a little bit and enters the medulla. then the current "rotates" left. This is a very delicate procedure that should be learned gradually. Breath after breath. Pranayama with Mula Bandha Mula Bandha means contracting the perinea muscles. The continuous practice of Aswini Mudra during Kriya Pranayama creates the condition for Kundalini awakening.) We practice Mula Bandha during the pause of the breath after inhalation. because it is clear that the spine cannot be contracted. In this more liberal approach to the length of breath in Kriya Pranayama. During inhalation and exhalation of the first 12 Kriya breaths. all the tension is released and the energy goes down to Muladhara. One perceives a pleasurable shiver in the spine. 114 . It is only the union of these two currents that can open the door of Sushumna. Kundalini awakens when there is immobility of the body and Prana and Apana unite. we visualize the current reaching Bindu. it is explained that breath retention should be at least muscles. The day after the practice of Kriya Pranayama with Aswini Mudra a diffuse joy during all the day is perceived. Variation 4. Aswini Mudra should be strong.

4 seconds, but the optimum is equal the length of inhalation. Just to make an example: 12 seconds inhalation; 4 seconds pause; 18 seconds exhalation is correct, but the ideal timing to reach is: 12-12-18. Variation 5. Counting the Kriya Breaths on the Chakras The following cannot be called a real variation: it is only a particular way of counting the Kriya breaths, without using mala or movement of fingers. Maybe it seems a trifle, but if you adopt it you will realize how deeply it calms your mind. Practice any of the afore described Kriya Pranayama variation (or the first part of Kriya Pranayama as described in chapter 6.) During the first breath focus on all the spine as the technique requires, but on Muladhara Chakra in particular, as if this Chakra were the most important point of the spine. After a full breath, during the second breath, consider the Swadhisthana Chakra as the most important point of the spine... and so on (third, fourth, fifth, Bindu, medulla, fifth... Muladhara). It is as if with each further breath you evoke the calmness, the sweetness of a different Chakra. After twelve breaths you will realize that something has changed, that you are more introverted. Variations of Navi Kriya The following two variations of Navi Kriya are very mild and comfortable. Variation 1. Breathing through the Silver Chord Consider the basic explanation in chapter 6. All the details up to the bending of the head forward remain unchanged. In this variation the Om Mantra is mentally chanted in alternation between the point between the eyebrows and the navel (Om in the point between the eyebrows, Om in the navel, Om in the point between the eyebrows, Om in the navel… and so on). Optional (but very useful if done with a relaxed attitude) is to synchronize the breath with the Om chanting. Let us dwell on this delicate point. Visualize a tiny silver channel that connects (outside your body) the point between the eyebrows with the navel. When it comes natural to have a very short inhalation, inhale only what is necessary, visualize the movement of air rising, through the visualized channel, from navel to the point between the eyebrows, pause an instant there just chant Om mentally. When it comes natural to exhale, exhale, visualize the movement of air going down, through the visualized channel, into the navel, pause and chant Om mentally in the navel. By repeating this, you will markedly feel that your breath begins to subside and disappear. When this happens, go on mentally chanting the Om Mantra in alternation between the point between the eyebrows and the navel and moving the focus of your awareness between these two points, without ceasing being aware of the "silver channel". Go on. When Om is chanted about 75 times, bend your head backwards and repeat a similar procedure by chanting Om in alternation between the Bindu and the third Chakra. Visualize another tiny silver channel that connects (outside your body) the Bindu and the third Chakra. Let your breath -- if there is still a trace of

breath -- flow freely in that channel. When Om is chanted about 25 times, resume the chin's normal position and chant mentally Om in the point between the eyebrows, medulla, Chakras 5, 4, 3, 2 and 1. This is one Navi Kriya. The optimum is to have 4 cycles of Navi Kriya. It is natural and desirable that from the second repetition onwards, the breath has no role at all. Variation 2. Descent through Four Directions The following variation of Navi Kriya is the one many kriyabans like the best. Let us first remind that the Dantian is located about two and one-half inches below the belly button and about one and one-half inches inside. It can be visualized as a ball about one and one-half inches in diameter. As usual, a kriyaban's awareness goes slowly up along the spinal column placing the syllable Om (ooong) in the six Chakras. Then the chin is brought down toward the throat cavity. A short inhalation is followed by a very long exhalation, during which, the energy is felt descending, along a path outside the body, from the frontal part of the brain to the navel, reaching through it the abdominal region -- the Dantian, precisely. During this exhalation, Om is chanted mentally, rapidly, 10-15 times, accompanying the descent of energy throughout its path, as if applying some "soft pushes". The head resumes its normal position. This is followed by a short inhalation (two seconds maximum, without concentrating on the Chakras) which raises the energy into the head again. The head bends toward the left shoulder, without turning the face. A long exhalation (with the same chanting of Om, Om, Om…) accompanies the downward movement of energy which starts from the brain's left side and moves along a path outside the body at its left side (forget that there is shoulder or arm) down to the waist where it bends and moves toward the inside of the abdominal region (Dantian). The head moves back into its normal position; again a short inhalation follows (two seconds maximum, without concentrating on the Chakras) to raise the energy into the head. The head now bends backwards. A long expiration (with the same chanting of Om, Om, Om…) accompanies the downward movement of energy which starts from the occipital region and moves (outside the body) down to the waist where it bends, passes through the third Manipura Chakra and moves toward the inside of the abdominal region (Dantian). The procedure is repeated likewise on the right side, then on the forward, to the left, and so on. The basic session of this particular form of Navi Kriya consists of 36 descents (9 full rotations of the head). It ends with mental chanting of Om in each Chakra from Ajna Chakra to Muladhara. (One session typically lasts 8-10 minutes and replaces the 4 repetitions of the commonly established form of Navi Kriya.) As the practitioner proceeds with the rotations, the movements of the head become less marked; this is quite normal. One can have encouraging results also by gradually reaching immobility and completing the prescribed number by a sheer mental process.


Procedures completing the action of Navi Kriya The following procedures are not part of the traditional set of techniques of Kriya Yoga. They are currently taught by some Kriya Acharyas because they have offered a great help in dealing with some difficult cases. Their power of removing almost any psychological hindrance is noteworthy and unparalleled. But they require great care because they affect the person's behavior during the daily life. You could excessively react to trivial impediments and to the irrational behavior of people. In short, some sharp personality traits of yours may surface. Obviously, they do not appear out of nothing -- they express what you had held within you for a long time. The positive aspect of these procedures is that they have the power to rekindle the "inner fire" of the spiritual path. First procedure Stimulus of the Navel Region in three parts Part 1 Kapalabhati Pranayama is used here in a targeted way to work on the navel. Perform inhalation and exhalation rapidly; exhalation should be done by contracting the abdominal muscles forcibly and quickly, resulting in a backward push. Exhalation and inhalation alternate with equal lengths and occur about two times per second. The navel acts as a pump and it's almost like using the abdomen as bellows. Exhalation is active, inhalation passive. A sudden contraction of the abdominal muscles raises the diaphragm and a volume of air is expelled from the lungs. The sound slightly resembles blowing one's empty nose. As soon as the air is forced out, the abdominal muscles relax, this allows the same volume of air to rush in; inhalation comes automatically. During each expulsion, Prana is sent to the navel and Om is mentally chanted in the navel. After 15-20 of these short exhalations, there is a pause and the breath resumes its normal rhythm. Then another 15-20 of these short breaths are repeated for about 100 mental chants of Om. Part 2 (optional -- only few persons are able to do it) Traditional practice of Nauli fosters the Kundalini awakening. Practice by standing with your feet spread a bit more than shoulder width apart with knees a bit bent, and leaning forward enough to rest hands on your knees. Expel all the air from your lungs, and then go up and down with the diaphragm. Breath normally. Then with air out, contract abdominal muscles by pressing down on our knees through both your arms. You will notice your abdominal muscles bulging out vertically. In time one learns how to "twirl" those muscles: the key to twirling is separating the flexing of left abdominal muscle from the flexing of right ones, and then coordinating the two flexings into a twirling motion. This happens by pressing differently on knees -- weeks are required. (One finds instruction in Hatha Yoga manuals.) Do at least twenty rotations. Just pause, take a deep breath or two, exhale again, and continue. It has been explained that the effect is that

Kundalini will begin to awaken. As you become familiar with Nauli, you will also be able to do it less formally in situations that do not involve the standing position. In time you will be able to do it without visible motion. Generally speaking, Mudras and Bandhas begin as pronounced and visible, and then naturally refine over time acting deep upon our nervous system. Part 3 This exercise is called Nabhi Kundalini. The breath follows a "reversed" path -reversed in respect to what is experienced in Kriya Pranayama proper. Prana present in the inhaled air is drawn down at the level of Manipura. Apana is pushed upwards with the exhaled air. Inhalation happens in three portions: through the first portion, draw breath and energy from the point between the eyebrows into Vishuddhi, make a little pause to feel the energy gathering there; through the second portion, draw breath and energy from Vishuddha into Anahata, make a little pause to feel the energy gathering there; through the third portion, draw breath and energy from Anahata into Manipura. While holding the breath, intensify the concentration on the Manipura through the three Bandhas (Mula Bandha, Uddiyana Bandha and Jalandhara Bandha). Mentally chant Om 12 times in Manipura exerting a form of mental pressure upon that center. Then release the Bandhas and exhale in three portions: through the first portion feel the warm energy from the Manipura, rising through the spine into Anahata; through the second portion feel the warm energy rising into Vishuddha; through the third portion guide the energy into the point between the eyebrows.
There is a more traditional version of Nabhi Kundalini. Place your attention at the Manipura Chakra. Visualize in its center a flaming, inverted triangle. Inhale gradually through the nostrils, and feel that the breath actually enters Manipura, heating it intensely, like a blaze afire. Holding your breath, perform Mula Bandha, Uddiyana Bandha, Jalandhara Bandha -- while keeping your attention on the blazing hot Manipura. Visualize a series of drops of white light falling into it, while mentally chanting Om with each drop. Release all the Bandhas, and release the breath. Exhale gently and slowly, feeling the warm energy rise along the spine, heating the Anahata Chakra, then the Vishuddha Chakra, the Ajna Chakra, and Sahasrara Chakra. Chant Om as it passes through each Chakra. Pause some instants at the Sahasrara Chakra. You can increase of 12 breaths, every 6 months, until you reach 108 repetitions. You are warned not to disregard this restriction.

Second procedure Vase breathing Sit quietly, breath a few breaths, until you can tangibly feel yourself breathing energy. Visualize your body as being completely hollow inside. In the center of your body, just in front of the spine is the central channel, a transparent hollow tube about the size of a small coin. It runs straight from the base of your spine to the crown of your head. There are to further channels departing from the right and left nostrils respectively, travel upwards to the top of the head and then curve

as if something had not gone to right way. swallow and push down with the you use your mental concentration and a light muscular pressure to bring about this feeling of compression. Then. If the person abides by a wise gradualness. some important results will appear. The results are a great quiet in the breath followed by an extraordinary mental clarity and by a sense of bliss. especially if the yogi has the wisdom of laying down after the practice. 7 Never dream of substituting the Dantian center or navel center with Manipura! The tendency to remove from the Kriya praxis anything which may seem non yogic is narrow-minded and needlessly confining. visualize the exhalation Prana directed to fill each part of your body up to a cellular level. When you are ready. Just to give an example. Prana comes up through the central channel and out through fontanelle. When this happens. If this practice is done without preparation. They join the central channel at the Dantian's level. Later this bliss increases and short states of Samadhi appear.either eliminating it entirely or erasing the concentration on the navel. compressed from above and below. As you finish your inhalation. the nectar (Amrita) is perceived. This practice is like holding an air ball between two hands -. thus reducing the technique to a pure concentration on the third Chakra. in fact. exhale. Visualize in Dantian a growing flame that gets hotter as the practice progresses. It travel downwards via the path of the tongue (Kechari Mudra). After about ten breaths. Hold your breath for as long as it is comfortable. just to experiment something. relax your lightly tensed muscles and exhale gently and completely. it heals the whole body and originates a blissful state. Once your first exhalation is complete. inhale a second time. 7 Practice Mula Bandha raising energy to the Dantian. Although the air leaves through the nostrils. doesn't succeed in being absorbed. thus again compressing the air energy at the area below the navel. Hold your breath and concentrate on this area. there are some teachers who have altered Navi Kriya . Take a full breath through both nostrils. The physical breath seems to dissolve. The breath is in the Dantian. irreplaceable action of unfastening the knot of the navel – not of the Manipura! 119 . when it becomes uncomfortable to hold the breath any longer. Air and Prana travel from the nostrils down through the right and left channels reaching the Dantian and thus the central channel. again. Specialized literature explains that each ten cycles of vase breathing you reach a higher stage: the higher Chakras up to Sahasrara are reached by the internal flame. swallow and push down gently with your diaphragm in order to firmly compress the energy brought down from above: now the air energy is completely locked in. Lahiri Mahasaya wrote unambiguously about the deep. Many devotees will not shift their awareness a single centimeter from the spinal column fearing their practice will become less "spiritual!" This is obviously a false argument: Kriya Yoga happens both inside and outside the run downwards on either side of the central channel. visualize that it rises up through the central channel and dissolves there. feeling the energy building there. The generated power. releasing the air up the central channel once again. one achieves only a nervous mood -. again tighten the lower muscles.

The hands may be used if you want. Figure 4. They are very useful to produce the experience of the internal sounds. The head comes near the right knee. Then concentrate upon the second Chakra and repeat the procedure (raise it. After completing the three movements. Variation 1 Forward bendings Before the practice of Maha Mudra proper. A pressure is felt on the forehead. Then the head is placed in the region between the knees again. Through a deep inhalation (not as long as in Kriya Pranayama -. bend the body forward. sit in the half-lotus position or on the heels. The energy is brought down from the point between the eyebrows to Muladhara through one long exhalation. the face turned downward. this becomes possible and is a great experience. reversing the perceptions. practice more slowly and without 120 . In that position. When you focus on a Chakra. and so on).Variations of Maha Mudra Two precious variations of Maha Mudra will be discussed first. A sensation of space is perceived inside the occipital region. one for each Chakra but since you can also ideally raise Fontanelle of eight centimeters. you can have seven bows. the face is turned toward the left knee so that it is possible to perceive a pressure on the right side of the head. the breath is retained during the entire bending sequence. If you do your best to feel the difference sensation between these two. hold the breath. it is easy to feel a swinging sensation in your head. the head is ideally divided in two parts: that which is down and the part that is up.employ half the time) raise the first Chakra into Fontanelle/Sahasrara. If this doesn't work. The head is placed in the region between the knees (see figure 4). try for a couple of seconds. Then repeat the same exercise with the other side of the body. You can have six bows. Touch the pavement with the forehead. When the head is touching the pavement. to perceive a feeling of movement in it. Forward bending starting from sitting on the heels or starting from the halflotus pose What we have explained is only the external hull of the practice. a sensation of space is perceived inside the left side of the brain. bend the body forward. By repeating the procedure above for various days. resume the starting position with the head and spine erect. you will perceive in each part. this important sensation.

" as many times as it takes before your lungs empty. the right hand grabs the toes of the right foot while the left hand grabs the inner side of the right foot (the arch of the foot). sah. chant Om coming up in each Chakra. Breath about 6 times in this way. but when the right leg is extended. breath and Prana roll upward through the spine to the crown of the head. then release the breath through the nose in short bursts. trying to perceive the oscillation in each one. A sensation like an inner pressure is felt on the right side of the head. sah. The same warning is to be repeated now.holding your breath. It contrasts with the free space sensation in the left side of the brain. The lips touch in the central part and the air comes out through the corners of your mouth. Lift the body just a few millimeters with the help of the hands and then let the buttocks touch the floor with a mild jolt. Exhale freely perceiving an ecstatic feeling -. this exercise is repeated three times. then release Kechari Mudra and exhale through the lips. Improving traditional Maha Mudra with the subtle perceptions of the previous exercise Now practice Maha Mudra. (The technique can be practiced more slowly and without holding the breath. After each "Hahm" just pause a moment. (The different "s" are perfectly audible). As usual. hearing "sah. Listen to the sound of your breath. While stretching forward holding your breath in the position envisaged for Maha Mudra. the pressure must be felt on the front part of the head. the face is turned left while the breath is retained.. Practicing the opposite position. Hear "Hahm" on the intake and "Sah" on the exhale.. sah. sah. increasing the fragmentation: s-s-s-s-s-s-s-s-s-s . Channel this warm sensation in the 121 . your awareness is focused on Muladhara. After 6 breaths. Second procedure Guiding Kundalini into the Region of the Fourth Chakra Inhale like in the previous exercise.this happens when the jolt is experienced not as a physical movement but as an intense mental stimulus upon Muladhara. the sensations are reversed. Then. perceiving a heat that spontaneously comes up through the spine. At the end of inhalation. exhalation is fragmented. Variation 2. during exhalation.) Procedures completing the action of Maha Mudra Read what we have written before introducing the procedures completing the action of Navi Kriya. Transfer it mentally at the base of the spine. First procedure Inviting Kundalini to Enter Sushumna (Tadan Kriya) Inhale deeply feeling that the breath fills from top down the lungs while the Prana (contrarily to what happens in Kriya Pranayama) goes down toward Muladhara. During inhalation the breath goes down toward Muladhara. When both legs are extended. inducing a warm feeling in the lips.

Exhale intensifying that sensation. Concentrate therefore on Muladhara and begin rapidly chanting Om.heart Chakra. After no more than 15-20 seconds you'll have reached the heart Chakra. You will feel warm in the region of the fourth Chakra. After about 12 breaths. Come up millimeter after millimeter continuously repeating Om Om Om.. it means that you are ready for the next step -. This state is not stable: after a few seconds it is likely you feel the necessity of breathing. mentally. "Bhastrika" consists in forced rapid deep breathing. Om. you can increase the length and the repetitions of this technique. Expand your rib cage and keep it expanded after completing the inhalation. It is not part of Kriya Yoga -.. Go beyond the thought of breathing. mentally (and of course avoiding inhaling). remaining focused on the heart Chakra and on the air and Prana filling your rib cage. You breath through the nose. Third procedure Establishing Kundalini in the Region of the Fourth Chakra Bhastrika Pranayama is one of the most important Pranayamas of classic Yoga. inhale deeply filling your lungs. If. You can begin with six repetitions. This brings an incomparable sense of peace. In time. you have to enter with your awareness the subtle channel of the spine. To achieve a stable state. It is like cleaning vigorously the area behind this Chakra. about one complete breath per second. the technique is completed. The light tension in the muscles of your rib cage prevents you from exhaling. hold your breath and feel the warm sensation increasing. being aware of what is happening in the spine. Now you perceive a deeper and stabler freedom from the breath. Focus your attention on the air and Prana filling the upper part of your rib cage: they are immobile there. like frozen. you perceive this peace and the breath does not exist. you feel the energy oscillating approximately 3 centimeters below and above it. By focusing behind the heart Chakra.. done with the diaphragm only. many times. Om.otherwise you can repeat the action of inhaling and expanding your rib cage.even if some schools suggest it should be considered part of it. Then inhale deeply. Try to remain in the same condition you instinctively adopt when you are going to take another sip of air.. Particular Procedures to be Practiced at the end of a Kriya Routine by those who have Succeeded in Reaching the Breathless State First procedure Antar Kevala Kumbhaka (Muladhara Granthi Bheda proper) After reaching the breathless state through whatever procedure. 122 . Climb the innermost channel of the spine like an ant (don't remain focused on Muladhara more than a couple of seconds).

millimeter after millimeter repeating continuously Om... Om.. we want to practice undisturbed. go on observing the light of the "spiritual eye" intensifying. the Fontanelle.. the occipital region. Third procedure Raising Kundalini into Kutastha (Rudra Granthi Bheda proper) After letting that the "wheel turns by itself" for some rounds. After reaching the point between the eyebrows.. inner light is perceived there . which is linked to the fifth Chakra. It comes natural to start the routine with a couple of techniques like Maha Mudra and Navi Kriya which are conceived to be used in phase 4 and 3. practice a variation of procedure 1. It is preferable to put all the techniques requiring movement at the beginning of the routine. you can intensify it by mentally chanting Om three times in each center. then in the navel .. without breathing.. then in the third . after this phenomenon has manifested a certain number of times.. The perception of the inner light happens at that spot for few seconds. become sensitive to inner light in the point between the eyebrows. slowly. then in the pubic region and finally in the perineum.many times. heart. the awareness comes down through the tongue into the upper front part of the throat.. and so on up to the medulla. "Frontal" means on the anterior part of the body.. The routine will be 123 . ending in Kutastha again. Then guide intuitively the light into the "frontal component" of each Chakra. Let us call "formal" the first and "informal" the second. D_HOW TO ORGANIZE A KRIYA ROUTINE We have already hinted that a Kriya Yoga routine where there is a specific action upon each one of the four knots and this actions follow strictly to the "PreReverse Order"of them (tongue. and the same light perception happens in the second Chakra. From a certain moment onward. Take a deep inhalation. We ideally divide the work for each knot into two parts: a strong action requiring physical movement and a subtle action that elaborates the effect of the previous and pursues audaciously the same goal by working on higher planes. The awareness comes down in the central region of the sternum . after Kutastha. The criterion we now introduce completes this principle. Then open you eyes and try to perceive the spiritual light in every object surrounding you. When you are familiar with this process. where you pause longer. apply Mula Bandha and Uddiyana Bandha (gently lift your diaphragm a little and pull your belly in). This concept . Thus. Then the concentration moves up along the back of the spinal column.rarely quoted in Kriya literature . Om.has not been introduced so far. navel and coccyx) does not work properly for everyone.Second procedure Circulation of Light Forget your breath: by lifting your eyebrows.. with your awareness. Concentrate on Muladhara and climb up the spine.

those who practice 60 Kriya Pranayamas should practice Maha Mudra five times. They are described in the correct order if you want to utilize all these three tools. Symbolically: F4.First Knot We practice Talabya Kriya with a strong awareness of the essence of the knot of the tongue.organized in the following way: Formal part of the 4th. one should perform one Maha Mudra -. 3rd and 4th phase. F4 Formal Part -. Others believe they are practicing Kriya correctly without ever practicing one single Maha Mudra! It is obvious if you forsake this exercise and lead a sedentary life. This means we are keenly aware of the fracture that exists in our 124 . stabilizes them for meditation. You can enjoy the afore described variation. F3 Formal Part -. (To make it more clear. the spinal column will lose its elasticity. which fills the body and mind with elation and vitality. The most serious schools of Kriya recommended that for every 12 Kriya Pranayama.three remains the minimum number. It helps in developing an unimpeded Kriya Pranayama.) Unfortunately. you practice only one of the two! F1 Formal Part -. and helps balance the left and right brain hemispheres. 3rd and 1st phase followed by the informal part of the 1st. F1 + I1. F3. I dare say it would be a miracle if kriyabans regularly practiced the three required repetitions.Fourth Knot The technique of Maha Mudra is the beginning of the fourth phase. Through it. I2. One's physical condition deteriorates over the years and it becomes almost impossible to maintain the correct meditation position for more than a few minutes —that is why Maha Mudra is so important for kriyabans. 2nd. having listened to different kriyabans. I3. I4 Let us develop this scheme.Third Knot You can enjoy the basic form of Navi Kriya or one of its variations. Differently from the procedures we have given for completing the action of Maha Mudra. while those who practices 12 or 24 Pranayamas should practice three of them. This is the proper place where you can also test the power of the afore described procedures that complete its action. This is the proper place to practice the procedures completing the action of Maha Mudra. the Prana located in the spinal column is raised up to the head.

I3 Informal Part -.First Knot The informal part of our routine begins with the first long inhalation of our Kriya Pranayama. The downward journey of static Prana -. sooner or later. fine and thin like a silken thread. With the help of Kechari Mudra the flow of the breath becomes smooth. We should be aware that the pressure-pull provoked by the sucker effect of the tongue on the palate creates a sudden calmness in our thinking process.will be unobstructed experienced. the fundamental experience of the breathless state.Third Knot We have seen that the third phase of Kriya comprises the union of Prana and Apana in the region of the navel (through the action of Navi Kriya) followed by the lofty procedure of mental Pranayama. activated by working on the navel region (Dantian). diminishing the slight physical movement they require up to avoid it completely. when the time is ripe. all of a sudden. I1 Informal Part -. We go upward. As for turning the calmness of the breath into the breathless state. Therefore you can recall in a few instants of concentration all the power you have created with phase F3 by practicing for one or two minutes one of the two described variations. it is quite normal that the experiments last months and months. creates that ineffable condition that some Kriya Acharyas call the "Kriya absorption state". The purpose is to succeed in listening to the internal sounds and Omkar sound without closing our ears -. in that instant the circuit is closed. I2 Informal Part -. a kriyaban has.body and consciousness between the body under to Ajna Chakra and the upper part of the head where static Prana resides. The essence of the Navi Kriya can be also experienced by intensifying the movement of the navel during a long Kriya Pranayama exhalation.the main characteristic of Lahiri Mahasaya's Kriya Yoga to open each knot and free our consciousness from the bondage of matter -. In that they do in Nada Yoga. to invite calm Prana from Sahasrara to come down through the tongue to the throat and to all the Chakras. Talabya Kriya is used not only to stretch the frenulum. This phase grants. We must train ourselves to feel it clearly. The Samana current. the 125 . as much as possible. An immense reserve of energy is located above Ajna Chakra.Second Knot This is the moment of applying the second part of Kriya Pranayama. Awareness of inner sound appears. We bring forth a continuous will of internal listening. We live in the first and it is only during the last phase of our Kriya routine that we can fully reside in the second. one day. the two parts of our body unite. When the tongue sticks to the palate and the mouth is opened. when the time is ripe. fluid.

a kriyaban does not feel the need to take in any breath at all or one takes in a very short breath but doesn't feel the need to exhale for a very long time.Fourth Knot Consider the "particular procedures to be practiced at the end of a Kriya routine by those who have succeeded in reaching the breathless state. (Longer than the time which medical science considers possible. When it manifests. The process should never become purely mental. far away from any known territory and is aware enough to understand that this is the key experience of one's life. sustaining its life from inside. It has nothing to do with holding the breath forcefully." They are to be practiced here. one feels a fresh energy in the body. the one which gave me tremendous results is that if you want to make remarkable spiritual progress. Nevertheless. Experiencing 1728 short breaths through Pranayama with short breath requires about three hours and can be done once in a week. or the thought: "Finally I have it!". with the subsequent dissolution of the mind. must use their breath in the most wise way to come as near as possible to that state. It does not simply mean that the breath becomes more and more quiet.impression to cross a screen and to emerge in another dimension.) This state embodies the characteristics of the authentic "religious" life. The Prana in the body loses any restlessness. A great teaching of my first Kriya teacher. a unique elation. One is carried away. There comes the realization that the body doesn't need to breathe. without the necessity of oxygen. The breath becomes so calm that the practitioner has the factual perception that one is not breathing at all. This for the benefit of increasing the Omkar experience and avoid sleepiness enter. it is necessary to live in an active but also introverted way. There is not the least quiver of surprise. Those who are not able to reach that state. Therefore do your best to keep a slender thread of breath up to the completion of the prescribed number. It is fantastic! Without any feeling of uneasiness. you should engage yourselves in being aware of at least 1728 breaths a day. In order to achieve it. 126 . I4 Informal Part -. people think it is impossible and that any affirmation about its occurrence is false. but in a calm. deep calmness pervades each part of the psychophysical constitution. it is possible. which nothing else in life can give. very detached way. Pranayama with short breath is the best technique. It is the state where the breath is entirely non-existent. You need to remain always on the border between breath and no breath. This does not mean that the person is unaware: he or she is perfectly aware. There is a halo of mystery that surrounds the description of this state. even if it is experienced only after years of Kriya practice. this condition lasts for some minutes.

the rhythm and astral location of each Chakra. inhale moving your awareness along the spinal column upwards. one cannot achieve the state of Eternal Tranquility" is simply not true. now we are going to introduce Omkar Kriya and Thokar Kriya. 8 During the first "sip" of inhalation. The syllables of the Vasudeva Mantra ("Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya") are mentally placed in each Chakra location. it is crucial for initiation into the Higher Kriyas.CHAPTER 8 HIGHER KRIYAS Kechari Mudra. We can understand the reason why. while making a short pause in each. Va in the fifth Chakra… and so on … Su… 8 I am sure the reader knows the correct pronunciation of the Mantra. We have broadly discussed (both practically and theoretically) the first two. during the second "sip". While lowering the chin. the concentration is on the Muladhara. with admirable commitment. Inhalation and exhalation are divided into six + six parts. What is incontrovertibly true is that Kechari Mudra helps to perceive the vibrational state. To those who are depressed because are not able to achieve Kechari Mudra. Acharyas of original Kriya demand indeed to see the actual execution of Kechari Mudra -. The exhaling breath too is divided into six punctuated parts like pulses. We shall define them and discuss how they help the achievement of the four stages of Kriya Yoga. the majority of whom never heard of Kechari Mudra. where the syllable Om is ideally placed. Starting with your chin on the chest.they want the student's mouth opened in front of them and to see the tongue disappear into the nasal pharynx. Were it true. ADVANCED PROCEDURES GLOBALLY KNOWN AS "SECOND KRIYA" Second Kriya . while simultaneously raising the chin as if to accompany and push the energy up. where the syllable Na is ideally placed … and so on. Notice that in the Bindu we don't mentally verbalize Va but Ba: this convention has been established over the years. The sentence which we hear repeated: "Until one is established in Kechari Mudra. that is why I will not add any phonetic symbols. who enjoy its remarkable effects. support the vast structure of Kriya Yoga. Omkar Kriya The hands with fingers intertwined rest on the abdomen. until Ba is placed in the Bindu. then many mystics. the awareness comes down along the spinal column. would never have experienced the Divine. without any fear of being contradicted.part 1. the inhalation is completed and the chin is horizontal. but who have not realized this Mudra. The syllable Te is placed in the medulla. like pillars. Kriya literature affirms. 127 . that there are many who practice Kriya Yoga with enthusiasm. But first of all let us consider Kechari Mudra. Kriya Pranayama. the concentration is on the second Chakra. let us claim therefore. Omkar Kriya and Thokar Kriya are the four key instructions that.

therefore to say that you put the descending syllables from "behind" has no more the meaning it had during the second part of Kriya Pranayama. Each detail should be introduced gradually. but can be longer. the head accompanies this inner movement with an almost imperceptible rotating movement (tilting back slightly. the awareness makes a complete. 2. This pressure is intense and is done with all your mental power.our awareness moves along the spinal chord without ever loosing the sense of continuity.De… Va. (It is for this reason the Kechari Mudra is strictly prescribed: it helps indeed creating the right pressure. In other words the pressure on each Chakra happens from all parts. 1. As soon as it is comfortable. you exert a mental pressure on it. But what is essential is to mentally feel (or create or discover a power to create) a pressure in the seat of each Chakra. The second movement is compared to the jumping of a frog or a monkey: from one Chakra to the adjacent one. We can approximately say that the awareness comes up "inside" and goes down "behind" the spine. counter-clockwise turn along the crown of the head and around the Muladhara Chakra. The rotation above happens inside the brain. When you mentally place a syllable in a Chakra. starting from the occipital region. In Kriya literature it is compared to the crawling of an ant -. these two movements are perceived at the same time. let us try to clarify how it happens. and finally to the back). Some Kriya teachers consider it an effective form of Thokar. so that it doesn't disturb the harmony of the general picture. the left. add a pause of 2-3 seconds both at the end of inhalation and of exhalation.) The timing of one fragmented breath depends on the individual: usually it is approximately 20 seconds. Visualize them as viewing from top. then it is released as soon the exhalation begins. The counterclockwise rotation around Muladhara happens in immobility. the front. Visualize each Chakra as a horizontal disk or coin with a diameter of approximately one inch. without one disturbing or obliterating the awareness of the other. During inhalation the muscles at the base of the spinal column can be slightly contracted. The center of your awareness remains placed all the time in the occipital region. From there you ideally look at each Chakra. Since it is vitally important. respectively. There is no difference when you are coming up with your chanting or going down. The gist of this technique is to perceive the two typical movements of the Kundalini in the spine. Let us consider two optional further details. wisdom and common sense are required. the pressure is always the same. During these pauses. From a certain moment onwards. and coming back to it. under the cranial bone. In the process of implementing them. This contraction is held up to the end of inhalation and during the ensuing pause. then to the right. it is an action realized with a kind of power that comes from months (and years) of practice of Kriya Yoga and of Kechari Mudra. We have already discovered the first movement in Kriya Pranayama. all the physical details are lived in a very 128 . During Omkar Kriya. over Bindu. until Ya is mentally chanted in the Muladhara.

followed by a jerk through which the chin is drawn toward the center of the chest is done. Figure 5. the syllable Va is thought in the cervical Chakra..part 2. The hands (with interlocked fingers) are placed upon the navel area so as to push the abdominal region upward. touching each Chakra with the syllable of the Mantra (Om is placed in the first Chakra. winding around it. Let us describe now how a complete anticlockwise rotation of the head. The movement of the head is only hinted and later disappears when perfect immobility is established..) . The breath produces only a slight. (the right ear coming near the right shoulder). Mo in the third . Thokar Kriya (Basic Form) With the chin resting on your chest. It has been explained that there comes a moment when Kriya Pranayama takes the "inward route". When the chin is up and horizontal. thus creating a mental pressure on the first three Chakras.simultaneously. the face does not turn left or right and the movement is free of all bouncing). This is the stage of Kriya Pranayama where the control of Prana happens no more by using the breath as a mediating agent but pure mental power. Te is thought in the medulla. weak sound in the throat or it comes out soundless. the inhalation ends and the awareness is in the Bindu. inhale raising the awareness along the spinal column. The head tilts back a little and in a sweeping arc reaches the right shoulder. raise the chin as if to follow the inner movement. The head begins its round by moving to the left shoulder (left ear moves slightly toward the left shoulder. weak sound or it comes out soundless. The downward and upward path of the energy is no more linear but similar to an helix that surrounds each Chakra. This perception extends in a natural way to the other Chakras. the head bends forward just a little and moves left until the left ear is near the left shoulder (the face is not turned to the left). Second Kriya . Na in the second. Rotation of the head in the basic form of Thokar 129 .subtle way. The breath produces only a slight. The anticlockwise turn of awareness around the crown of the head seems to sink inside and touch the medulla too. The movement is charged by the maximum possible mental intensity: like squeezing with a pencil an almost empty tube of toothpaste to get the last little bit out. The rotation proceeds.

the chin is tilted down diagonally as if to strike the center of the chest.From this position..) while holding the breath. keep the muscles of the thoracic cage just like one who is going to begin a new inhalation. mindful physical effort is simultaneously aimed at lowering the chin.. The duration of this process is about 24 seconds. the afore described movement of the head is only hinted: the chin does not come close to the chest and the hitting of the fourth Chakra is mainly achieved by the sheer power of mental concentration. Hence. While doing this. the entire process from inhalation to exhalation with 12 repetitions of the rotation of the head (each rotation concluding with the movement of the chin toward the chest) may last around 70-80 seconds. It is better to add more cycles over time rather than face the prospect of experiencing continuous head and neck pain throughout the entire day! Oral tradition. while simultaneously Su is thought in the heart Chakra. Te. The procedure is repeated at least 12 times. Va.part 3. 9 After having inhaled (with Om. Move 9 To give an idea of the speed of the movements. A cautious and wise approach is to settle into 36 repetitions per day without increasing beyond this number. For several weeks. the head is usually kept down.. but the mental chanting of Te in medulla. The presence of physical problems (the cervical vertebrae are vulnerable indeed!) may require that one stop the technique for a few days or practice on alternate days. Su . a kriyaban is guided to perform this technique 12 times a day. Va into the second one and Ya into the first one. handed down from teacher to disciple. Na. Simplify the dynamic and the physical intensity of the movements. Through this last movement. Su.De into the third one. The contraction at the base of the spinal column is eased off. then to gradually increase the number of repetitions. In this relaxed mood. One should not allow the weight of one's head to push the chin toward the chest: in this condition. concluding with a slight jolt which is intensely felt within the fourth Chakra.. the cycles of the movements of the head are performed with no hurry whatsoever. Second Kriya . Te. is to increase the number of repetitions up to 200. the physical movement is definitely too powerful and harmful for the head and neck. An expert Kriya Acharya should check that the physical strike is not forceful. Va. Va. Thokar Kriya (Advanced Level) The technique is the same. The act of sealing the lungs (trachea) as one does on a dive should be avoided. When increasing the number of repetitions. via a very subtle exhalation the remaining syllables of the Mantra are "placed" in the first three Chakras -. 130 . Each week he can add six more repetitions.) and raised the Prana in the upper part of the lungs. A short pause follows: the breath does not move in the nostrils and the mind is enraptured in the radiation of energy emanating from in the heart Chakra. Su. Va in the cervical and Su in the Anahata Chakra is done not once but several times (Te. while resisting the force of gravity. Mo. a kind of hitting is felt in the heart Chakra.

one practices on alternative days. Va. is gradually increases up to twelve rotations. then lift it to left side and go on with the rotations. if there are problems with the cervical vertebrae. The sensation will always be that of not breathing at all.) Stop when intuition suggests to stop.the chin toward the chest before having completed the rotation of the head. after rotating your head from left to right. You will realize the meaning of Lahiri Mahasaya's sentence: "My worship is of a very strange kind. there are two schemes that apparently seem incompatible. A never before experienced joy and a perfect feeling of freedom will pour into your being. No special utensils are necessary. obsessed with holding the breath. never to be exceeded! 2. in the course of time. Su) is the upper limit. The subject Thokar is of extraordinary importance. let your chin "fall" down toward the chest from the right side. each linked with the mental chanting of Te. The technique is practiced only once but the whole set of head movements is gradually increased by one every day. Its practical application requires extreme care. 131 . the number of the head rotations inside one single breath. amounts to nothing but a mere violence against one's own body! The correct way of practicing the advanced level of Thokar is a matter of inner realization -. The technique is repeated 12 times but for each breath we have three repetitions of the movements of the head. One day you will realize you are rotating the head and the breath is actually dissolved! The breath seems frozen away and Kumbhaka will be perfect. the head is usually kept down.Ya in the first three Chakras. kriyabans can jump from one to another according to their own experience and intuition. Alternative. While doing this. This practice is done rigorously once a day only -. Basic scheme. prudential scheme. Actually. and emptiness has merged with euphoria. slowly exhale and place the syllables De. In the course of time.rather. (Don't do any specific act of inhaling or exhaling: relax yourself and the afore described phenomenon happens of its own accord. Namely. Trying to get to a high number of rotations at a high speed. While keeping the chest expanded and the abdominal muscles and diaphragm perfectly immobile." With regard to the increase of the number of the head rotations. Va. You will experience a state of intoxication. let a minimal (almost imperceptible) sip of air go out whenever the chin is lowered toward the chest and an imperceptible sip of air enter whenever the chin is brought up. 1. Holy water is not required. No one can say at what point of the process this will happen. Kriyabans emphasize the fact that the gist of the technique lies in filling the upper part of the thorax and the head to the utmost possible extent with Prana just as a pot may be filled with water to the instinct which is discovered with time. 200 rotations (200 sets of head movements. Even flowers are redundant. In this worship all gods have disappeared.

a healing process of old wounds through the awakening of wisdom. There is no other thing in the universe as concrete and real as this vibration -. From now onwards. ADVANCED PROCEDURES GLOBALLY KNOWN AS "THIRD KRIYA" Third Kriya . In due time. A tiny white star illuminates the path of Eternal Freedom.Omkar Experience after Thokar Practice Sooner or later you reach the level when you hear the internal sound of a bell. Light as the falling of petals.. A first ever Bhakti (devotion) will arise spontaneously from our heart.. Mo for Manipura. The syllables are obviously Om. appease. guiding our steps when events seem to conspire to make us forget the spiritual path. meditation becomes a love story with Beauty itself. Everything will appear as transfigured. Our old memories. A luminous point (Bindu) appears in the heart Chakra. In its delicacy. We feel that this sound is the Reality underlying all the Beauty experienced in life and that all the experiences of love are like crystals blooming around its gilded thread. Mo. Om. another lofty experience will manifest. Na.. At its very first manifestation. revive. conflicts and impossibilities. Mind and intoxication mingle and mind enters perfect stillness.. This ineffable experience surrounds us in misfortune.part 1. for Muladhara. provided that this tuning is maintained.. come true in the azure limitless immobility spreading from the center of our heart. Going up this way from Muladhara to Bindu and coming down is one round: the time required is approximately 6-9 minutes. cross the wall of our psychological dimension and make life and spiritual experience indistinguishable. Visualize each Chakra as a horizontal disk. avoiding trying your hand at other higher procedures. Making three . Its beauty is inexplicable.six rounds is a very good 132 . a kriyaban becomes ready to advance to the last stages of Kriya.. It is clear that these two events (internal sound of a bell and experience of spiritual light in the Anahat Chakra) constitute the best criterion for judging if you have actually practiced the second level of Kriya Yoga or a pale imitation of it. as if the path had come to its fulfillment. If you honestly realize you are far from it. it gives the feeling of an unfathomable distance. for Swadhistan. Practice long sessions of Kriya Pranayama (three phases) and seek the Omkar experience there.. Na. Om. ["Counterclockwise" in this book is always intended as if viewing from top]. A real understanding is attained. bell sound gives total contentment and ease. Na.. surround it with the repetitions of the related syllable making three counterclockwise rotations. knocks softly on the doors of your intuition. surrounded by a padded coat that reduces all dissonance. A strong concentration at the point between the eyebrows is achieved spontaneously and is accompanied by a tremendous surging of bliss.expression of Om cosmic vibration. Mental Omkar Kriya Here the breath is totally forgotten. Mo. The door of Sushumna is now open. Having this experience.

achievement! Moving from a Chakra to the next one. Now forget the breath but keep the energy in that point. The ellipse of the crown. Figure 6.static Prana -. Bindu. rotating inside part "1" of the crown just like you have done with Muladhara. The practice converges toward perceiving a wonderful state of calmness -. may be ideally divided into 12 parts. Third Kriya . 5. The procedure ends in ecstatic absorption. medulla. you will notice the change of the light vibration in the region between the eyebrows. You will enjoy a particular sensation of physical immobility. the rotation of the head now draws a circle of no more than 2 .3 centimeters of diameter. it is so strong that your spine will become like a steel bar.. over the occipital region. start rotating the head -. each Chakra. Om. 4.) and raised the Prana in the upper part of the lungs. on the right (into part "1" of figure 6). Micro Thokar After having inhaled (with Om. Na. keep the lungs as when you are going to begin a new inhalation. After two or three complete rounds a sudden bliss manifests and one is no more able to mentally chant anything. Rotate there the associated syllable Na.. and deepen the experience. In the same way raise the second Chakra into the adjacent part "2" of the crown. Na. Crown seen from above Repeat mentally Om... the Muladhara Chakra is ideally raised into the crown of the head. diminish further the dynamic of the movements of the head. 3. Om . With a very relaxed mood. Na. Thanks to a short inhalation. Om.but take care of making slight movements! In comparison with the movements of the advanced level of Thokar. Considering fontanelle like a point.. seen from above. you can extend the action of Omkar Kriya to the crown. 4.part 2. Na . • Optionally. Mo. There could be also a light but visible 133 . It is clear how the same procedure is repeated for the other Chakras (3. 2 and 1) activating thus all the parts of the crown.

a different light. "Va" when you move to the right. Repeat different times. keeping the focus of concentration in medulla oblongata. Su into the fifth Chakra. Exhale. Repeat three times. give a faint jolt with your chin. Repeat three times the procedure with Te. Su. Hold your breath. "Su" when there is a soft tap in the center of the fifth Chakra. Va. You can.oscillatory movement of the body (torso) that accompanies the movement of the head. Hold your breath. at the same time. Exhale and inhale. 2. focusing all your attention into the posterior part of the cerebellum.right return to center. Two Procedures Completing the Action of Micro Thokar First Procedure Extending the Action of Micro Thokar to the Centers of the Head Inhale raising the Muladhara Chakra into medulla. to be aware of the fifth Chakra. and so on ( are lightly tapping the region between the eyebrows. 2 . A good practice is the one that gives you the chance to notice how. While part of your awareness remains in the head. Repeat three times the afore described procedure with Te. Think "Te" when you move to the left. taking back the rotation of the head. Va. Su when you return to the center and. If you have mastered the advanced level of Thokar. focusing all your attention on the Pons Varolii. Va when you move to the right. Va in the right one and Su in the frontal part of the head. 4. by stimulating a particular Chakra.a few centimeters forward). Now raise the second Chakra into the posterior part of the cerebellum. of a particular color. Transfer the repetitions of Te. Repeat about three times. 1. up and down your spine different times. Va.). Hold your breath. becomes perceptible. 3. 3. taking back the rotation of the head. exhale and inhale between one Chakra and another. While you think Su. Exhale and come down at the third Chakra location: inhale and raise it to the Pons Varolii (in order to perceive it come from cerebellum toward the center of the head. Va. Oscillate slowly your head left ... in order to intensify your perception of medulla oblongata. 134 . 5.. making the movements more and more subtle until you reach perfect immobility. 4. 2. over medulla -. you will be able to do all the work during one single breath. but not obliged to. you can have a small ( almost invisible from the physical point of view) jolt -. Micro Thokar is practiced now inside medulla. Shift your attention to the fourth Chakra and repeat the procedure... Su. try. 1. always holding your breath. Repeat in the third Chakra. There are different ways of doing this: think Te in the left lobe of the brain. Exhale and inhale.. Su into the head. Think (mentally chant) Te when you move to the left. Transfer the repetitions of Te. The gist of the procedure is the ability to recall the internal power born from the practice of the advanced levels of Thokar.

Va. To perceive it. Inhale. Second Procedure Utilizing Micro Thokar inside Pranayama with Short Breath Pranayama with short breath is a wonderful teaching where you link each breath with a different Chakra. This center is the point of intersection of the two lines. It is not superfluous to remind that when you practice correctly. When you have it. Repeat all this maxi round from the beginning. repeat three times in that point the procedure with Te. Exhale from Bindu to medulla. raise it into Bindu. To perceive it. Exhale and come down at the point between the eyebrows. Inhale. Repeat three times in Bindu the procedure with Te. Exhale from Fontanelle to the point between the eyebrows. Su . Exhale from medulla to Muladhara. Feel a horizontal line that comes from the point between the eyebrows backwards. if you place your finger under both nostrils. Feel a horizontal line that comes from Bindu forwards. Inhale. Inhale. Inhale. This center is the point of intersection of the two lines. Exhale from pons Varolii to third Chakra. raise it over the pons Varolii in the point marked with "4" in figure 7. swing slightly your head back and forth. Locating some particular centers inside the head Exhale and come down in the fourth Chakra. Va. Inhale. At the same time feel the vertical line that comes down from the fontanelle. raise the whole region between the eyebrows into fontanelle. Repeat three times at fontanelle the procedure with Te. Va. Exhale from point "4" to Anahata Chakra. making the movements subtler and subtler until you reach the perfect immobility -. which is the seventh Chakra trigger point.Figure 7. Inhale. Exhale and come down in medulla. mind and breath. Inhale. Su. Exhale from Cerebellum to second Chakra. Exhale and come down in the fifth Chakra. the ingoing or outgoing breath will not touch the finger.of body. slightly swing your head back and forth. Su. raise it in the point marked with "5" in figure 7 . Inhale. Va. Inhale. Su. Exhale from point "5" to cervical Chakra. At the same time feel the vertical line that comes down from the fontanelle. The breath is almost imperceptible and on the 135 . Repeat three times in that point the procedure with Te.

Try to feel that "Te Va Su" creates an oscillatory movement inside Muladhara. Let us copy here the specific instructions we have already shared in chapter 7: "After reaching the breathless state through whatever procedure. Repeat more than one cycle. This state is not stable: after a few seconds it is likely you feel the necessity of breathing. Exhale a short breath.. third and second Chakra. Tengo el fuego en las manos". you have to enter with your awareness the subtle channel of the spine. Expand your rib cage and keep it expanded after completing the inhalation. When it becomes natural to have a very short inhalation. vibrate "Te Va Su" there. tiny oscillatory movement inside each Chakra. The light tension in the muscles of your rib cage prevents you from exhaling. Concentrate therefore on Muladhara and begin rapidly chanting Om. To achieve a stable state. This is the best condition to realize the breathless state. It recalls all you have learned through Thokar. medulla.verge of disappearing. Go on like that. repeating the procedure between Muladhara and the fourth Chakra. Now we are going to experience the same exercise by adding the perception of a slight. When it comes natural for you. mentally. ADVANCED PROCEDURE KNOWN AS "FOURTH KRIYA" Fourth Kriya. Exhale a short breath. vibrate "Te Va Su" there. Om. repeating there "Te Va Su" many. many times. This procedure gives you the opportunity of awakening the innermost core of each Chakra. When the breath will stop like a miracle. Pause in Anahata Chakra. pause an instant and concentrate on the second Chakra. like frozen. inhale a short breath and concentrate on the third Chakra. concentrate on Muladhara. Muladhara and the fifth Chakra (then Bindu. inhale only what is necessary. Focus your attention on the air and Prana filling the upper part of your rib cage: they are immobile there. Omkar Gayatri Kriya Before effectively practicing Omkar Gayatri Kriya it is necessary to have reached the breathless state. Hold the breath gently and vibrate "Te Va Su" in the second Chakra. inhale deeply filling your lungs. Do it once. fifth. Om. Focus your attention on the Muladhara Chakra. Climb the 136 . Try to remain in the same condition you instinctively adopt when you are going to take another sip of air. Thinking. Hold the breath gently and vibrate "Te Va Su" in the third Chakra. After this. Go beyond the thought of breathing. Vibrate (think with emphasis) "Te Va Su" in Muladhara. until you perceive light both in Anahata Chakra and in the point between the eyebrows. you shall understand why Garcia Lorca said: "no me pidáis que lo explique.) One cycle is made of 10 short breaths. fourth. concentrate on Muladhara. many times. it is necessary to have reached the Antar (internal) Kevala Kumbhaka.. increasing your concentration until your breath is almost nonexistent. mentally chanting " Te Va Su" in the seat of a Chakra is not like thinking another Mantra.

you perceive this peace and the breath does not exist. although it is not a physical void. A particular "space" is created in the region between the tip of the tongue and the point between the eyebrows and is perceived as a "vacuum". a kriyaban perceives the rhythms of each Chakra and is able to distinguish one from another. Visualize thus Muladhara in the inferior part of this circle.. Om Satyam is mentally chanted three times in Bindu. The position of the second Chakra in the light of Kutastha will be a little higher than that of the first Chakra. Om Tapah for medulla. 10 With the attention both in the point between the eyebrows and in the location of the first Chakra. the Mantra Om Bhur is mentally vibrated three times. 137 .otherwise you can repeat the action of inhaling and expanding your rib cage. mentally (and of course avoiding inhaling). Something like a gentle touch . Come up millimeter after millimeter continuously repeating Om Om Om. you will be overwhelmed by a deep introverted ecstatic state before being able of practicing 12 cycles! Kechari Mudra enables one to fly in the "inner space. If Kutastha is visualized like a circle. take into account that you are going to recreate all the spine with six Chakras inside this circle. Om Mahah for the third. If. in the ether". Now reverse the order (Om Tapah in medulla. This brings an incomparable sense of peace. 10 This moon is just as big as to allow the light of Kutastha to contain six piled-up "moons".innermost channel of the spine like an ant (don't remain focused on Muladhara more than a couple of seconds). it means that you are ready for the next step -." "Ke-chari" is literally translated as "the state of those who fly in the sky. Om Swaha for the fourth. (Bindu is not brought into the point between the eyebrows).is perceived with each repetition of the Mantra. ideally raise the Muladhara Chakra into the point between the eyebrows. to be seen herein as a bright "moon". remaining focused on the heart Chakra and on the air and Prana filling your rib cage. Om Janah in the cervical Chakra ….. " While remaining in the state of Antar (internal) Kevala Kumbhaka. Om Janah for the fifth.. Now you perceive a deeper and stabler freedom from the breath. lastly Om Bhur is mentally vibrated three times in Muladhara. Om Bhuvah is used for the second Chakra. This is one cycle: the instruction is to practice 12 cycles but if you are capable not to lose your concentration.both in the point between the eyebrows and in the location of the Chakra . By merging into this empty space. Put your attention on the next Chakra where the same procedure is repeated. After no more than 15-20 seconds you'll have reached the heart Chakra.

138 . and not all the parts of the Gayatri Mantra. medulla Om Tapah.Om Bhuvah.Figure 8. Satyam is the world of Absolute. The reason is that the world of thinking. In conclusion we associate a Mantra to each Chakra in this way: Muladhara . is more fit for the nature of the third Chakra. while the causal world of pure ideas. Mahah is the mental world. Om Satyam. The Gayatri Mantra is considered to be a supreme vehicle for gaining spiritual enlightenment. Its purest form is Tat Savitur Varenyam Bhargho Devasya Dhimahi Dhiyo Yonaha Prachodayat. Om Bhuvah. This invocation is more complete since it recognizes that there are more planes of existence: the seven Lokas. The particularity of the use of this technique in Lahiri Mahasaya's Kriya is its practice in the state of absence of breath. Om Janah. great Spiritual Light who has created the Universe we meditate upon Your glory. Om Mahah. Ultimate Truth. Vishuddhi . You are the remover of all Ignorance.Om Swaha. Om Swaha. Swaha are invocations to honor the three planes of existence (physical.Om Satyam. In our procedure we use just the opening long invocation. Om Tapah. Anahata . Manipura . The terms Bhur. astral and causal respectively) and to address their presiding deities. Bhuvah. May You enlighten our Intellect and awaken our Intuition. Om Swaha. Swadhistan . Six Chakras raised into Kutastha Some remarks about the Gayatri Mantra The structure of this technique is well known in India and is considered the subtlest way of utilizing the Gayatri Mantra. With small variations and further ritual additions it is published in some booklets. We can be satisfied with the explanation that these sounds are utilized to activate the Chakras and connect them to the seven spiritual realms of existence.Om Mahah. Om Bhuvah.Om Janah. Tapah is the world of intuition. is related to Anahata Chakra.) This Mantra is prefaced with either a short or a long invocation. You are the embodiment of Knowledge. Janah is the world of pure knowledge. in the complete form. The short invocation is: Om Bhur. recalled by Om Swaha. (Oh. Bindu . the plane of spiritual balance. The long invocation is: Om Bhur. The Kriya tradition we are here following ties Manipura with Om Mahah and Anahata with Om Swaha. evoked by Om Mahah.Om Bhur.

calmness of the breath and listening to inner sounds should always go on increasing. At the end one remains in the light of Kutastha longer. There is no need to be annoyed if. I=informal part] 139 . but is. It was based upon the division of the work upon each knot into two parts: a strong action (Formal) and a subtle action (Informal). inner joy. Usually. After months of applying the afore described method. The good effects of peace. then the body settles in perfect immobility. working routine? Practicing every day all the Higher Kriya techniques is ideally possible. F3. I4 [F=formal part. one day you will discover that the chanting of the Mantra goes on more than three times. otherwise the experience ends... This practice should not be interrupted by external events. I3. The point between the eyebrows is a region where you can dissolve the "seal" of each Chakra and experience the Tattwa related with it. In order to avoid this. you can slightly oscillate your head from left to right and vice versa. A wonderful sensation is experienced. One's awareness is fully situated in that Chakra. At the beginning of this practice. and so on. This movement is going to diminish in extent during the first cycle. luminous sphere. We organized the routine in the following way: F4. which is felt like a great. it is good to refer to chapter 7. If we produce and accept the opposite situation. by going on. forgetting to move to the next. cumbersome and dispersive. Higher Kriyas should always co-operate to establish a foundation of harmony and calmness. trying to perceive an internal rhythm in each Chakra. This experience is lived again in the next Chakra. 3. it simply means that we have momentarily lost sight of the goal of Kriya. otherwise the kriyaban will be disturbed at a pranic level and will hardly retrieve the breathless state during that session. which criterion can help us to conceive a rational. F1 + I1. in practice. as if the body were made of air. 2. The Tattwa related with a Chakra has capture you. I2. The extent of the swinging is not wider than four centimeters from left to right and vice versa. How to Conceive a Good Routine Containing the Higher Kriyas Having so many techniques at our disposal. but the kriyaban is not aware of it except in an indirect way: an increase of joy and rigidity in all the body.Some Technical Remarks 1. 4. There is one single "coming up". About thirty six repetitions of that Mantra are carried out. One doesn't get excited by this. It is a sense of immobility and lightness. being "lost throughout the way". We introduced a criterion to create a rational routine. there manifests also the pulseless state. you discover having spent all the time in one Chakra.

Now we can consider: F4. it is fine to spend a lot of time either with the second part of Kriya Pranayama or with Omkar Kriya to travel inside the spine and let their sweetness merge you into Beauty. I2. 140 . I4 because we have learned how to apply a strong action upon the heart knot: Thokar! Thokar is F2. I3. F3. F3. I3. If you have time for it. followed by one (or both) the techniques of Third Kriya. forget I3. F1 + I1. I4. The oasis of calmness and surrender experienced in the phase I2 should not be interrupted just for the anxiety of going to phase I3. fill the upper part of your rib cage with Prana and then try to transform the breathless state into Samadhi state. The procedures of I4 described at the end of the previous chapter do not disturb. After Thokar. I2. If this happens or you are listening beautifully to the internal sounds. We know that I3 is made of any variation of Navi Kriya. I3. you can plunge into the rarefied atmosphere of the Fourth Kriya technique. I4 It remains to be seen how can to interpret I2. If you have not achieved the breathless state. But it may happen that just with the practice of Omkar Kriya the state of breathlessness is will be crossed automatically as a side effect of the breathless state. provided that it doesn't disturb. However. practice the wonderful technique where you inhale deeply. practice Pranayama with short breath. F2 (Thokar). F2. If you have achieved the breathless state. since the practice of Thokar works best after Kriya Pranayama. a very good routine is: F4. F1 + I1. I3 and I4. I2. forget about the navel knot -.

it reverses direction cutting the Vishnu Granthi whose seat is in the heart Chakra. The central teaching is guiding your awareness along a three-curved path called Tribhangamurari (Tri-bhanga-murari = three-bend-form).. Let your awareness come upwards along the spinal column: half a minute is required for reaching Bindu. let us say 45/50 seconds. Once a particular point in the back (about 2-3 centimeters above the right nipple's height).. (See figure 09) Figure 9. bending to the left. is reached. it reverses again its direction pointing toward the seat of Brahma Granthi in the Muladhara. For two weeks repeat this technique 25 times once a day. but if it turns out to be shorter. Then the awareness descends through the afore delineated threebend path. After having reached a point in the back that is 2-3 centimeters under the left nipple's height.. 141 . One round lasts one minute. Then for another two weeks repeat it 50 times .APPENDIX TO CHAPTER 8: AN IMPORTANT VARIATION OF THOKAR BASED ON THE INTERNAL TRIBHANGAMURARI MOVEMENT It is fair to reserve space for describing how a Kriya school conceives the practice of Thokar in a very particular way. forget the breath entirely. This path begins in Bindu. goes across it and continues toward the right side of the body. it descends into the seat of the Rudra Granthi (the region from medulla oblongata to Bhrumadhya between the eyebrows). and so on up to 200 times for two weeks. The same time is required to come down. Tribhangamurari internal movement FIRST PART: UCCHA KRIYA Amantrak [also called "Second Kriya"] After the practice of Kriya Pranayama. this does not mean that the procedure has been done too much quickly.

Teeee is vibrated from medulla to the point between the eyebrows. During this movement (be careful: the movement is slow!). Na in the second . the Tribhangamurari flow descends to the left from Bindu to medulla. From that chin-up position the face turns to the right (as with the intention of looking attentively at the area at your right. the perception of the Tribhangamurari current is intensified by mentally chanting the syllables of the Mantra .the perception of the inner flux moving across the fourth Chakra. 50 times. The hands (with interlocked fingers) are placed upon the navel area so as to push the abdominal region upward. the perception is at the Bindu. The movement is charged by the maximum possible mental intensity: like squeezing with a pencil an almost empty tube of toothpaste to get the last little bit out. slowly moves toward the position in the middle of the chest.). During this movement. move your awareness very slowly along the spinal column from Muladhara upwards. the shoulder also makes a small motion upward to make contact with the chin easier) while the syllable Va is vibrated in the eighth center. Then the chin. then for another two weeks. one repeats this technique 25 times. Without turning the face.. The chin is above the right shoulder. as far as possible).. Teeee is vibrated from medulla to the point between the eyebrows.. Ya is vibrated in Muladhara. Your chin comes slowly up following the inner movement. When the chin is parallel to the ground. Na. After the completion of this number one will add the movements of the head.. De. This four new centers are four "vortexes" inside the main flow of the current -. thus creating a mental pressure on the first three Chakras. The neck's rear muscles are contracted. Mo. then the head tilts back a little and in a sweeping arc begins to move toward the right shoulder. grazing the left side of the collarbone.. For two weeks. Va. from there it touches the right shoulder for an instant (this is the first of five strokes. the head moves toward the left shoulder. The second stroke takes place on the left side when the syllable Su is vibrated in the ninth center. While Om. Each vibration of a syllable is like a mental Thokar (hit) into the related center's location: since the technique is performed slowly (half a minute for raising the awareness.. Ga. Bha. as far as possible). and so on up to 200 times. accompanying . Thokar along the Tribhangamurari Path [also called "Fourth Kriya"] Starting with the chin on the chest. Ba are vibrated into the first five Chakras and Bindu. Then the face begins to turn left in a very slow motion. The face turns to the left (as with the intention of looking attentively at the area at your right.exactly 142 . the same for coming down) there is plenty of time to make these tappings very effective. the inner Tribhangamurari flow reaches the eighth center. Su.millimeter by millimeter . During this movement . as usual the Chakras are touched with the syllables of the Mantra (Om is placed in the first Chakra. Va are put outside the spine in the four new centers.Samantrak [also called "Third Kriya"] After the completion of the 200 repetitions. but it stops in the middle where the chin is raised as much as possible.they are not a new set of Chakras.

This procedure is repeated 12-36 times. Figure 10. During the first weeks it is wise not to practice every day. 36x35. but spread out the practice to every two or three days. half a minute is ideally required for raising your awareness. the same time is required to let your awareness descend through the Tribhangamurari path.two light strokes are given to the collarbone in intermediate positions. it is thus possible to reach deep mental concentration when thinking of each of the five syllables in their respective centers. As in the previous technique. 143 . Thokar . A minimum of 8-10 months is required to complete it. the last chin stroke on the chest (central position) is carried out. The supervision of an expert helps to avoid problems – I am specifically referring to stress and pain in the cervical vertebrae and in the muscles of the neck. Abrupt movements should be avoided. In the end.when the syllables De and Va are thought in the tenth and eleventh centers . 36x3. usually the required time is longer.…. This is really a colossal venture. 36x2. when Ya is placed into Muladhara. If you employ 45/50 seconds. 36x36. it's all ok.Tribhangamurari At this point one starts the incremental routine of this form of Thokar by practicing (strictly no more than one day a week!) the amounts : 36x1..

the seat of Eternal Tranquility. We are used to consider two of them: a. when some critics affirm that this technique leads the energy out of the Sushumna. you cut it off.Some Remarks upon Uccha Kriya This Tribhangamurari form and internal energetic path is a symbol of Kriya Yoga because it shows the piercing. The rising of the energy toward the upper part of the head (this event is the very goal of Kriya Yoga) meets three great obstacles. We rarely take into account the last obstacle: the sharp separation between the regions pertaining to the sixth and to the seventh Chakra. An analogous operation happens with the knot of the Muladhara every time you reach it from left and begin to climb the spinal channel. as depicted in the iconography. Coming down along the path with three curves. It is important you feel what you are doing. The oneiric activity is very involving. as if we were deadly frightened!). This leads to a total modification of the perspectives through which we see life. Please note that during the months of practice of Amantrak. you do not "caress" the medulla oblongata. as if you had lived a deeply intriguing and captivating adventure. Same thing happens with the knot of the heart. three knots have to be crossed". Passing through the heart Chakra. You change the prospective through which you look at life. is also a form with three curves: his neck. the Tribhangamurari flux cleans a lot of dirt. Remember this. the cutting of three main Granthis. Repeating the procedure you wear out this knot and make the road freer for the rising of the energy. its own reward is the fact that in this immobility an enormous power can be built and experienced. Now. legs and back are kept in a peculiar position clearly outlining these three curves. The action of this technique decreases the hectic condition caused by superficial emotions. You will always like this Thokar and it will never disappointed you. you pass through it. whose cut from right to the left is clearly perceived. The consciousness which is in tune with Ajna Chakra and dwells in the area from medulla oblongata to Bhrumadhya (the point between the eyebrows) cannot easily arise from there into the upper part of the head. But phase 1 Amantrak is difficult to sustain. divergent moods alternate. what blocks the entry into the spine (it is for this reason that we begin our routine with Maha Mudra) b. Krishna-like. It is also a symbol of Sri Krishna. what happens in this technique of Amantrak is simply marvelous. fed by certain energies springing from the lower Chakras. A sentence attributed to Lahiri Mahasaya is: "To make this body Tribhangamurari. the disturbances created by the heart plexus (how many times it ruins the best meditative experiences creating a sudden increase of pulse frequency. that is the reason of its peculiar effect of separating one momentarily from reality. Its shape. Later you will find yourself in a very strange mood: 144 . There are no movements of the chin to guide the flow of energy.

For a whole month you will like to remain at home. as if in a state of convalescence. your head moves toward the left shoulder. as far as possible. it is necessary to perceive it many times while remaining perfectly immobile. Your eyes follow the movement shifting horizontally without losing any detail of what is in front of you and end by looking attentively at the area at your left. the eyes look at the floor. To be more exhaustive. reached Muladhara. A perfect choice is coupling 200-300 Kriya Pranayama a day with Samantrak. This is a privileged way of creating a dialog with our own unconscious sphere. Chant (aloud or mentally) the syllables of the Mantra and simultaneously raise your chin and eyes smoothly. From that chin-up position. your face slowly turns to the right. there is one in particular whose psychological effect is tremendous. Therefore don't fail to gradually reach 200 rounds first with Amantrak and then with Samantrak! Thokar with Open Eyes Among the so many improvements that come spontaneous by practicing. when you approach 200 repetitions. Your eyes follow the movement and end by looking attentively at the area at your right. To whom has the time and the good will to complete will be alien to everything. Then your face slowly turns to the left. the breath is free. But remember that before boosting the intensity of your perception of this inner three-bended movement through the Thokar procedure. shifting vertically the gaze centimeter after centimeter upon what is before you. as far as possible. Those who have experienced this. During this movement. now there will be nothing . the intensity of your gaze diminishes and the eyelids close. The effects of the incremental routine of Thokar up to 36x36 repetitions are very strong and can be defined a deep internal cleansing. one's eyes are turned toward high. without jerks. In the past. In the final instant you feel falling asleep. Samantrak will be much more easy and I would say euphoric. Without turning the face.during the day you lack enthusiasm. the procedure is the following: Starting with your chin on the chest. Unfortunately many do not understand that Samantrak is not simply thinking the syllables: it is Amantrak that is feeling the whole current millimeter after millimeter plus lighting a light in each of the twelve (actually eleven) points. By increasing the number. Some practice it at night before lying down. Then you repeat the procedure again and 145 . going down from the spinal column's left side. fall in love with the procedure and go on practicing it every day in small doses. whenever wandering about the countryside. you were used to take in the beauty that seemed to spread from everything surrounding me. you will feel like you are about to explode! This would happen anytime the energy. the effect upon the oneiric activity is remarkable. I recommend it as the greatest enterprise that one can achieve in life. During the last four strokes given from the left position. in no place would you feel at ease and no activity would produce any satisfaction. then it returns to the starting position while at the same time raising the chin up as much as possible. When the form of Thokar is practiced with open eyes.

medulla and in the other four centers located along the Tribhangamurari flow. Unfortunately. Va.) Perceiving a movement within a perfect stillness -. center).has an enormous impact upon a kriyaban's ability of unloosing his/her small individuality in the greater Self. many seek frantically impossible surrogates of it! Micro Movement without Mantra [also called "Fifth Kriya"] Raise the Muladhara Chakra into the point between the eyebrows through a short inhalation. De. outside the spine -.similar to that already experienced in large-scale dimension. In Muladhara you have a pause of one second before beginning the exhalation. 146 . Bindu and Fontanelle.again.which is impossible to be intellectually grasped -. Su. Inhale from Muladhara to Bindu while raising your chin. Su.those linked with the syllables (Va. I have no news about an incremental routine but I think that we can use the same scheme (12 + 6 + 6. Va. look "down" at the Muladhara Chakra . left. left. Va. Bindu. right. This is one round: usually twelve are practiced. When the presence of the energy is clearly felt in the point between the eyebrows. This experience is the surest way toward the realization of the Self. During exhalation you feel the current spreading from Muladhara. Very strong effects will surely manifest during the same night! Thokar with Kumbhaka All happens like in previous phase but now you hold your breath and you must be slightly quicker. Your breath is very calm and free.visualized like a horizontal disk or coin with a diameter of approximately an 2-3 centimeters. SECOND PART: PURNA KRIYA This school designates as Purna Kriya (Purna means "complete") the experience of the movement Tribhangamurari in small dimensions inside each Chakra.. Ya in the proper places. This procedure is repeated 12-36 times. De. If this is comfortable use a faint movement of the spinal column (forward. Draw on the disk of the Chakra the form of the Tribhangamurari movement in reduced dimensions -. piercing each Chakra up to medulla. Only few Kriya schools have disclosed the nature of this micro movement and revealed its importance.. The same procedure occurs in each of the twelve centers (the first five Chakras + Bindu + medulla + the four centers outside the spine + Muladhara).) we have encountered in the basic form of Thokar. Then hold your breath while you practice all the afore described movements vibrating Teeee.

Now. Tribhangamurari micro-movement inside a Chakra When you are familiar with this procedure. right and again left. the micro147 . The duration of a round is determined by the speed of the chanting of the Mantra. thus achieving its opening. The essence of a Chakra. you touch its lateral parts affected by the duality of Ida or Pingala. The nature of each Chakra presents two aspects. After one week. on the second day of the incremental routine. the micro-movement 12 times in each of the 12 centers -. A deeply rewarding incremental routine is obtained by perceiving. consequently. Ida flows along the left side of a Chakra and Pingala flows along its right side. Moving our awareness forward. Lahiri Mahasaya's recommendation was "Don't be in a hurry!". With this action. Four to six complete rounds are recommended. from the posterior component of a Chakra you move toward the anterior one. During one round you perceive this micro movement 36 times (3x12). is a vibration of "light" attracting your awareness upward. the more quickly you enter the core of the same Chakra. toward the Spirit. You return to the starting point having completed a journey from the internal part of a Chakra to its external part and again to its internal part. while you practice the micro movement technique. swaying inside it. The more you are aware of this. you enter deeper and deeper in the intimate nature of a Chakra. we contact the external part of a Chakra. We get in tune with the internal component of a Chakra by ideally placing our awareness in the back of a Chakra. try to be aware that through this micro movement you annihilate any form of duality banning your consciousness from reaching the nucleus of a Chakra. its internal aspect. In whatever Chakra you concentrate (it can be a Chakra or one of the new centers outside the spine) if you mentally utter the syllables "OmNa-Mo-Bha-Ga-Ba-Te-Va-Su-De-Va-Ya" you will perceive something stirring. but at the same time you return from the anterior component back to the posterior one.Figure 11. the micro-movement lasts about 10-12 seconds. The external aspect of a Chakra is a diffuse "light" enlivening and sustaining the life of the physical body. Furthermore. one internal and one external. Micro Movement with Mantra [also called "Sixth Kriya"] Forget your breath. For many people the chanting of the Mantra and. repeated again and again. on the first day. during the micro movement. The syllables are like little "thrusts" or "pulsations".just one round. by swinging left.

then four. is the following.. On the morning of the second day. After one week one perceives 36x2 = 72 times (72 times in the first Chakra. the amount is 36x3 in each Chakra. however a kriyaban should grant himself the joy.. After some days. A particular joy springs out of the Chakra in which the awareness dwells... the micro-movement is perceived 36 times in each of the 12 centers. up to the last amount 12x12. 148 . The increase is of 12 in 12.and so on. the use of common sense should always prevail. Slipping into a hurried practice leads to nothing. The work-load must be divided into two days. One has a total of 36x12 perceptions of the micro movement – one round. At a certain point. avoiding any opportunity for conversation. it is wise to keep silent. One should intentionally wait for a particular feeling of enjoyment after each chanting of the Mantra.just one round. This means that the last day you perceive 144 micro movements in the first Chakra. The most challenging of all the incremental routines. the technique is resumed exactly where it had been interrupted the previous night. 144 in the second. an entire day is not sufficient to complete the round. a polite reply is always imperative. Then 36 times in each Chakra/center. After these two days of practice. 72 in the second…and so on).. if addressed. you might need to rest not only for some days but even for some weeks. and so on. The final 36x36 will require a week or even longer to be completed! This incremental routine is really a giant achievement. suited for those who have retired.. a single stage will require three days.movement is perceived 24 times in each of the 12 centers -. On the first day.. At a certain point. However. During each stage. the privilege of going on slowly.

To be aware of the point between the eyebrows may be the only thing possible: it is possible that one vibrates there one's beloved Mantra and merges with the Infinite. 149 . In the months preceding that moment – intuition guides the advanced kriyaban to guess (or. a kriyaban withdraws his awareness from the body and from the physical world . Since it is possible to complete this with reasonable ease in a period of 24 days. This means perceiving a total of 20736 micro-movements. death's mechanism is to be invited (when the right moment comes) by calming the heart and by merging deeply with the Omkar reality. having concluded all activities. a kriyaban performs the technique of Thokar. It is recommended to perceive the micro movement in the point between the eyebrows 36x48 for each center. According to this tradition. a farewell to life.A Remark about Mahasamadhi This Incremental Routine is a good preparation for the conscious exit out of the body at death (Mahasamadhi). to understand) when such a moment is approaching – one should practice this technique extensively.a "small death". In this way one "dies forever": dies to one's desires. It is explained that it burns forever the necessity of reincarnating. As the Yoni Mudra marks the last moment of the day when. It is not sure that. one can assume that this process is supposed to be repeated more than one time. so to speak – the afore described intensive procedure is like a Yoni Mudra in greater dimensions. to one's ignorance. a return to the origin. is our ardent hope and determination. To experience that. ideally. in the moment of death. We may reasonably assume that it is not always possible to perform the physical movement of Thokar.

OTHER VARIATIONS OF THE THOKAR TECHNIQUE After having introduced the technique of Thokar in chapter 8 and discussed the most important variation in this appendix. In the meantime. Bha. those who have discovered the Tribhangamurari variation of Thokar have just looked inside. Without turning the face. present in each man.if this does not disturb.) During this movement. perceived a natural phenomenon and keenly devised a method to intensify it. then the head tilts back a little and in a sweeping arc begins to move toward the right shoulder. Om. the energy has descended from Bindu to medulla. from this chin-up position the face turns to the right (as with the intention of looking attentively at the area at your right. This idea is perfectly acceptable. what need is there for mentioning other variations? The reason is that I have never stopped asking me whence the Tribhangamurari variation of Thokar has originated. existing irrespective of our efforts in perceiving it. the head moves toward the left shoulder..) While keeping one's breath held. Mo. all one's awareness like an arrow is injected into the point between the eyebrows. as far as possible. According to this rather attractive point of view. while chanting Teeee. Variation of Thokar Linked with Tribhangamurari Thokar The inhalation happens like in the basic form of Thokar.. As for me. Some affirm that the Tribhangamurari path is a universal reality. I believe that the Tribhangamurari Thokar originated from the following variation which is a well known Sufi way of practicing Dhikr. Then the breath is held. Internal flow of the current hitting the first four Chakras When the chin is up. as far as possible) and then to the left (as for looking attentively at the area at your left. Mula Bandha can be added -. This is only half done: the head stops in the middle where the chin is raised as much as possible. The chin moves up. (During this act. Na. Figure 12. not in a vertical line but curving to the left. the fifth Chakra is perceived and the 150 . Ga and Ba in Bindu.

climbs up the spine. the remaining syllables De. But. The same experience happens: a certain internal pressure is felt on the left part of the heart Chakra. Inhalation happens like in the basic form of Thokar. This action is called Maha Bheda Mudra. second and first Chakra respectively. like a liquid light. This is obtained by a series of very long and deep exhalations (each exhalation is preceded by a quick inhalation which does not require any visualization) through which we push the energy up from Chakra to Chakra. no Mantra is utilized. The head resumes its normal position and bends backwards: the same experience happens and pressure is felt on the back of the heart Chakra. finally a last stroke directs the energy and the syllable Ya into first Chakra. A very long exhalation accompanies the movement of the energy which. A kriyaban realizes how easy it is now to obtain as much concentration as optimal in the various centers. pressure is felt on the frontal part of the heart Chakra. Last Variation of Thokar: the Simplest! To close this appendix.. toward the throat cavity: a certain internal pressure is felt on frontal part of the heart Chakra. The movement of the energy is intensified by the movement of the chin which is raised very slowly as if to push the energy up. 151 . The centers of the head are awakened by increasing the mental pressure around each one of them in the last part of each exhalation.. Mo. another similar movement directs the energy and the syllable Va into the second Chakra. without turning the face.. an ecstatic shiver is perceived. Bindu and fontanelle. and finally in Bindu and fontanelle. and the syllable Su is vibrated in the heart Chakra. The head then resumes its normal position.. Om. Its effects are very difficult to assimilate! 11 At the end of this practice. The chin bends forward. another similar diagonal movement of the chin from the left to the chest is repeated and the energy is directed toward the third Chakra where the syllable De is vibrated.. reaching a Chakra. Ba in Bindu.obviously it is the knot of the Muladhara to be crossed and cut. usually. The head resumes its normal position. "Position of the great perforation" -. Va and Ya are placed in the third. toward the throat cavity. This form of Thokar can be extended to all the Chakras. The head resumes its normal position and bends slightly toward the right shoulder..syllable Va is mentally chanted in it. The head resumes its normal position and then bends slightly toward the left shoulder. During this five bendings holding the breath. while keeping one's breath held. Then. While exhaling. Then the exhalation leads the awareness through the Chakras to Muladhara. crosses each Chakra up to medulla. After the syllable Su is vibrated in the heart Chakra. one repetition is more than enough. from the left position. If the jolt is accompanied with the correct mental intensity. Only an expert Acharya can guide a kriyaban to increase the repetitions of this technique. Te 11 Some Kriya Acharyas teach at this point to lift the body just a few millimeters with the help of the hands and then let the buttocks touch the floor with a mild jolt. then again falling down and moving from the base of the spine to a higher center. The procedure is repeated at least 12 times. This procedure can be repeated for a total of six to twelve times. then the chin bends forward. without turning the face: the pressure is felt on the right part of the heart Chakra. let me introduce a variation that can be useful to those who do not love the strong impact of Thokar and prefer a more delicate approach. The chin moves up. when the dissolution of the breath is accompanied by an increase of mental power. Kundalini can be invited to awaken. (If you have practiced Mula Bandha release it). From the Muladhara Chakra the energy rises like waves of a tide moving higher and higher. Na. the chin strikes the middle of the chest along a diagonal (just like in the basic form of Thokar). Then the breath is held.

Va in the fifth Chakra… and so on … Su… De… Va.. We don't have the exact details of that procedure but it seems reasonable that the was lifted (with or without the help of the breath) from under the navel up to the brain. The procedure is repeated at least 12 times. The movements become more fluid: after bending forward. Extending Thokar to all the Chakras and to the centers of the head is very easy. one will encounter no difficulties whatsoever. we make milder movements till we reach a perfect placed in the medulla. The time employed depends on the individual. Thokar Technique and Dhikr of the Sufi There is no doubt that Thokar has a great affinity with a particular Sufi way of practicing their "Dhikr". In this immobility there is a treasure to be enjoyed. while raising it. one may abide by the numbers given in the Kriya schools or one can go beyond them in a completely different dimension. A modern Sufi confraternity practices in the following way: "La" is placed in the head. until Ya is mentally chanted in the Muladhara. it moved from the brain to the one shoulder. After inhalation. I think that if one wants to follow the Sufi path by using the Kriya techniques.. shifting our attention to the different points and repeating the procedure. the breath can be held and the movements of the head can be repeated different times before exhaling. 152 .. We activate a counterclockwise internal movement in each Chakra and/or center of the head. "illaal" (with head bending to the left) in the left upper part of the chest. Going on in this way. Of course one should be endowed with a strong self-teaching spirit. after reaching the brain. but it can be longer. the head does not resume its normal position but hits to the left. It should be remarked that the different pressures on the heart Chakra are more similar to a supply of energy flowing down in a tranquil way from a region above the head than the typical tapping of the Thokar. The head movement is comparable with the movement of a lid of a pot which by moving allows the pot to be filled by a stream of energy. As for the number of repetitions of each technique. then backwards. and "lah" (with head bending down) in the heart. As the chant increases its intensity. then again "La" in the head. a deep intoxication is felt in the heart: one may reach numbers of repetitions which are inconceivable for a kriyaban. Interesting is to learn that Lahiri Mahasaya gave the Islamic mantra Lâ Ilâha Illâ Allâh to his Muslim disciples to be practiced during Thokar. usually it is approximately 20-25 seconds.. "ilaha" (with head bending to the right) in the right upper part of the chest. It is obvious how this form can evolve.. I am referring to those procedures in which the chanting of the Lâ Ilâha Illâ Allâh is accompanied by the movements of the head. then to the other shoulder and then it hit the heart.

" This is comic! When we find such amenities we wonder: "who on earth has written such nonsense and with what purpose"? We can also read that Yogis are inclined to fall into sorcery and black 1 This theme could have been placed in the first pages of this book. Most readers behave like timorous animals in unfamiliar territory. he can verify that after a physiological time (one or two months) this story will appear on a couple of other sites. Now I realize that possible dangers must to be discussed seriously. an aspirant can develop occult. will find some pages warning against the dangers of "premature awakening of Kundalini". psychic powers. For example the ability to read someone else's mind can create problems and is likely to be .PRACTICAL ASPECTS CHAPTER 9 PRELIMINARY REMARKS ON THE POTENTIAL DANGERS OF MEDITATION AND KRIYA YOGA The theme of this chapter is potential dangers of Kriya Yoga in connection with alienation from reality and with the premature awakening of Kundalini. 1 This subject has aroused a great interest: the list of the problems that the allegedly premature awakening of Kundalini would cause is limitless. but quite often they are misused. There are millions of people in the West practicing meditation every day. They prefer to get a general idea of the author's motivations (…and obsessions) by concentrating on certain techniques to see how deeply they are discussed. they might pay attention to the author's message in a preface. Only if they are convinced of the value of a book. If one makes up that a yogi died of spontaneous combustion during the practice of Pranayama. however in my opinion it remains marginal in the discussion of the mystical path. A reader who browses through the Web pages dealing with Kriya Yoga or Kundalini Yoga. Usually meditation is introduced as an omni-beneficial activity. I was not aware of any danger. quite tied up to deviant behaviors of people. 153 . unable to focus long enough to work. Unfortunately there is a tendency in the Web to duplicate pages from site to site without changing a coma. resented by those who it is used on. It is necessary to deal with this theme before facing any didactic issue. in particular agitation and anxiety. These powers can be used for constructive or destructive purposes. But meditation is taking a walk in your psychic inner world. Besides Kundalini.PART III: LEARNING OF KRIYA YOGA -. thus necessarily there should be obstacles and dangers to be considered. Thus we can read also that: "Trough practicing Kundalini Yoga. I have also decided that the first part of the book conveys my first enthusiastic idea of Kriya as a path of Beauty. but there is few information about how to avoid dangers. there are a few web sites that warn against any form of meditation: all hinting at the possibility of a break with reality with unusual or extreme strengthening of emotions. but I think it is convenient to deal with this theme now because few people ever read a preface. wondering whether to give a modicum of trust to the author.. There are evident exaggerations. long-term disorientation where one spaces in and out of higher planes..

I couldn't! I became a psychiatric case. fatal psychic disorder. One guy claimed that: "When you repeat that Mantra Om. I didn't dear to close my eyes. Yet. The situation I am totally unprepared to deal with is what can happen to those who have made use of drugs or who have shown symptoms. this has been my way of thinking. Anyone wants to exorcize the thought of having seriously damaged their brain and be in a condition of permanent.. opiates and (emulous of Castaneda) didn't disdain the use of psychotropic plants. We don't want to rub salt in the wound -. When I read or heard all one likes to put a past. even weak. They mention contemptuously the same techniques that we have experimented so many times. They want to convince you that by breathing fresh air (Pranayama) they have developed all kinds of mental ailments. had I to burn in it. " The same person adds that during a meditation session began to levitate and ". of mental disturbances and start practicing Kriya either because it's a trend or as a treatment. I will walk such path without an ounce of fear." For a lot of time. and 26 times I've been hospitalized. even schizophrenia too.. Kriya turned out to be a curse. instead because of life itself. If the germs of madness are inside me. also because I believed after all that the alleged dangers were imagined by minds full of confusion. Personally. I saw the flames of Hell. Om. I lost my sleep! Whenever I closed my eyes. From a benediction as it seemed at the very beginning. Whatever that follows is the result of that specific Hindu Demon you are invoking. with so much love. Any discussion about whether Kriya can accelerate the situation is perfectly useless because the answer will be never demonstrated. Sometimes the situation is not clear and I just guess what is confirmed by their friends and never by the reluctant student: a desultory life-style marked by drug abuse. I've always been taken aback when people blame their spiritual practice for damaging their psyche but say nothing about the drugs they have taken! How came that a person went to India every year for a series of years? How came that for many years there wasn't any interest in learning Yoga? Only recently they have practiced some mild form of concentration and lo.magic because they evoke. if I must go crazy. now is accusing the simplest yogic exercises to have caused their doom. I prefer to go crazy because of Kriya. I continue with the usual enthusiasm and courage but I am prudent when I talk about Kriya to other people. They ask us to respect 154 . a catastrophe! They go on maintaining that now they are ill and suffer because of their prematurely awakened Kundalini! The same person who for years took acids. they will come into bloom both if I practice Kriya and if I do not practice it.. which cannot be changed. drawing the purest delight. any kind of amphetamines. a misfortune." We are baffled when we meet people in real life (maybe even our friends) who claim that Kriya is responsible of all their psychological and psychiatric problems and of some physical troubles too. ever since that second I haven't slept as a human. you are actually invoking a demon spirit to come and possess your mind. negative entities. But life taught me that there is a part of truth there. in causal relation with today's troubles and tragedies. I don't know what counsel to give to them or if in this situation it is better to exclude the practice of Kriya altogether. unaware. my first reaction was: "Now. considering the glorious moments experienced..

Many prefer the more accessible revelations of a channeler who lets the invoked entity express through the flood of his own eloquence. Classical spiritualism . How terrible is sometimes this illusion of self healing! If someone is psychologically fragile. On some occasions we meet both drug abuse and mental disturbance and will never know if there were the drugs who damaged their brain and nervous system. when they give the most absurd and funny excuses to justify their leaving Kriya: they are doing the right thing! Often the worse experience for a kriyaban who has tried to help them is to be a witness of what seems a gigantic ingratitude: not only do they abandon the Kriya path but they revolt against it as if it was an horrible thing causing havoc. on the contrary. Devotion is enough!". Probably they don't aggravate the condition of their alienation but fear and anguish might arise as an unconscious resistance to awaken they lurking mental nightmares. healing action of Kriya. It is pathetic and. this is a field where one certainly would hurt their psyche.the psychological wall they have erected. The rules of politeness require that we listen to them without reacting. Once their mission was accepted. or it was because of an already damaged brain that they sought drugs as a remedy.has handed over its place to more modern methods such as those where all the participants. Let us remember this. I deal with this minor-in-frequency theme because there are people who claim they have the privilege … to communicate directly with the historical Masters of Kriya.characterized by a person (medium) who enters a trance state at a desk. All tell that once they were skeptic of their own faculties and would not accept yielding to the higher Will who had decided to entrust to them the mission to serve as medium between spirits and humanity. In my opinion. almost automatic. may get involved in spiritualism (mediumism). A radical transformation is impossible. it is very unlikely they use the techniques of Yoga in the right way. to an extent. It is interesting to see how the channeler's biographies trace a common scheme. Let's get things straight: often it is the very mental disturbance that brought people to spiritual and esoteric interests. from the same ultra mundane source came the inspiration to mix the flow of 155 . But we see that the reality is quite different. have been frightening. curious of exploring the Afterlife unknown territory or dreaming to contact a deceased relative or friend. That is their past. I have some grounds to believe that the untrustworthy soil of spiritualism is one of the best areas to cultivate splits inside one's personality. ended forever: we are invited to worry only over Kriya and its effects that had to be marvelous (as we hastily have promised them) and. Failure is certain: fear forces one to remain on the surface and bars their way to deep practice. Let's bite our tongue: they are not ungrateful but sick persons and our biggest mistake was a failure to understand it and overestimate a pseudo. Another situation of real doom is when a student. answers the questions put by the bystanders through a code of loud raps . feared as the worst spectrum. putting their hands on an upside-down glass to move it among the letters of the alphabet stamped on a comfortable flexible tablet (Ouija board). We listen nodding our assent and we are not permitted to clamor for a mirror in which they can see how inconsiderate and cruel they had been toward their body. even amusing being told that their message is coming from the hereafter: "In this epoch. the Kriya is old-fashioned and useless. In other students we perceive that there is a pre-existing psychological trouble. They seldom confess how in the past at the climax of a psycho-physical breakdown they refused to take prescribed medications. They claim they succeeded in solving any problem through the sheer use of their will. Sometime they claim Kriya is the arch-enemy of the spiritual experience. a menace to one's psychological stability.

with a sadness sharpened by the particular situations which at that time took place. the Medium knows in advance the preferences and anticipations of the person who addresses him. the messages are always agreeable. Bija Mantra. The representation of being coiled like a spring conveys the idea of untapped potential energy. activating each Chakra. psychologically speaking. Their original desire to find total freedom. They claim that the enlightening and beautiful experiences can be so powerful that people doubt their sanity.. spiritual realization.. They gave all their possessions. Kundalini Let us begin by what is said in any Kundalini book. As anyone can observe. Kundalini is Sanskrit for "coiled": it is conceived as a particular energy coiled like a serpent in the root Chakra (Muladhara). Mudras. was the mental fragility of most people practicing spiritualism. A tremendous concentration of spiritual energy lies allegedly at the base of the spine. from behind the mask of their face. If spiritualism kept its promises. Each book warns against the risk of its premature Kundalini awakening and asserts that the body must be prepared for the event. In Kundalini Yoga a seeker aspires to harness this tremendous power through specific techniques (particular breathing patterns. receives the message that the Divine has assigned him an important mission… I believe that this is. Therefore all becomes like a closed circuit: question and answer reverberate in an endless loop like the feedback of a microphone set next to its loud speaker. reality has nothing to do with their imagination! Apart from the automatic writing in which the one who asks is the same person that gives the answer. even of limited intelligence. They puzzled me not only on account of their statements but also of what emerged through their eyes.) and guide its rising from the Muladhara up through the Sushumna. extremely self-confident. waiting to be aroused by spiritual discipline. the person is unprepared to sustain all that power. 156 . It was as if. another personality appeared. to a person who was an authentic rogue. and their life. Bandhas. it would be the most valid gold-mine of information . ended in the worst of all prisons. it bestows infinite bliss. mystical illumination etc. Others explain that even if Kundalini would come up through the right channel.the various revelations with the diagnosis of unlikely illnesses.a direct connection with the beyond. This concept provides a framework which is convenient for expressing what is happening along the Kriya path. far more accurate than any other source! Alas. It sleeps in our body and underneath the layers of our consciousness. very dangerous. who allowed others to defraud them in the worst of the ways. It is explained that when Kundalini arrives at the crown Chakra (Sahasrara). Every adept. I knew some kriyabans who plunged into situations of such a narrow vision that their life style appeared grotesque. with prescription of expensive alternative remedies. What I witnessed. Some explain that the problems manifests when Kundalini comes up through the wrong channel.

His life after awakening was both blessed by ecstatic bliss and tormented by physical and mental discomfort. I experienced a rocking sensation and then felt myself slipping out of my body." (Gopi Krishna Living With Kundalini). The illumination grew brighter and brighter. He experienced a continuous "luminous glow" around his head and began having a variety of psychological and physiological problems. quite without warning. a fresh complication in the already disordered system. usually after a completely sleepless night. "Suddenly. Entirely unprepared for such a development. This experience changed radically the scheme of his life. I had to prepare myself for even worse torment of the night. He adopted a very strict diet and for years refused to do any other concentration exercise. but regaining self-control instantaneously. [. He continued to meditate. It continued to expand until he heard.. I was completely taken by surprise. " Let us see how the experience stabilized and he emerged from this negative experience into an awakening that blessed him to the end of his life. which had always been present during the preceding days. His practice was visualizing "an imaginary Lotus in full bloom. entirely enveloped in a halo of light. "The keen desire to sit and meditate. He discovered that the esoteric teachings contained a number of simple practices that might help bring the energy back into balance after it had been awakened 157 . keeping my mind on the point of concentration.] Each morning heralded for me a new kind of terror. and after withstanding patiently the tortures of the day. that of Gopi Krishna. with a roar like that of a waterfall. a deeper fit of melancholy or more irritable condition of the mind which I had to restrain. I remained sitting in the same posture. I felt a stream of liquid light entering my brain through the spinal cord. At the same time I felt a sudden distaste for work and conversation. He practiced concentration exercises for a number of years.exactly as he had for the three hours before dawn each day for seventeen years . radiating light" at the crown of his head. As he sat meditating . disappeared suddenly and was replaced by a feeling of horror of the supernatural. The book gives a clear and concise autobiographic account of the phenomenon of the awakening of Kundalini. time hung heavily on me. I wanted to fly from even the thought of it. Kundalini --The Evolutionary Energy in Man (currently available under the title Living With Kundalini ). the sensation began to spread and extend upwards. At times he thought he was going mad.. to prevent it from completely overwhelming me. pleasurable sensation at the base of his spine. adding to the already distraught condition of my mind. by keeping myself alert.Gopi Krishna Let us consider an excellent testimony. with the inevitable result that being left with nothing to keep myself engaged. the roaring louder.he became aware of a powerful. a roar like that of a waterfall and felt a stream of liquid light enter his brain. He experimented it in 1937 although he had not a spiritual teacher and was not initiated into any spiritual lineage. In 1967 he published his first major book in India.

his friends thought he was "losing his mind". known from ancient times in India as Kundalini. During this long process. Goel's (1935. In his opinion. He went up and down India looking for someone who could explain what was happening to him.. and overjoyed at the cessation of pain. Tortured and exhausted almost to the point of collapse by the agony I had suffered during the terrible interval.incorrectly. but with all the will-power left at my command. I remained absolutely quiet and motionless for some time. or the lunar nerve on the left side. religious and mystical experience. and tried to force an imaginary cold current upward through the middle of the spinal cord. He was a very rare individual. S. and told him that 158 . which was responsible for creativity. which he advocated. filling my head with a blissful lustre in place of the flame that had been tormenting me for the last three hours. exactly like the sinuous movement of a white serpent in rapid flight. agonized. I distinctly felt the location of the nerve and strained hard mentally to divert its flow into the central channel. genius. unable to believe I was really free of the horror. Kundalini got awakened on its own. However they did not know. His experience of Kundalini awakening happened when he was 28 and was quite dramatic. He found many people that had theories." From then onwards. as if waiting for the destined moment. ". his Guru appeared in his dream. There was a sound like a nerve thread snapping and instantaneously a silvery streak passed zigzag through the spinal cord. Kundalini was the true cause of evolution. I immediately fell asleep. bathed in light and for the first time after weeks of anguish felt the sweet embrace of restful sleep. Then. Completely taken by surprise at this sudden transformation of the fiery current. When he was 35. to activity.. a fearful idea struck me. I brought my attention to bear on the left side of the seat of Kundalini.1998) described in his: Psycho-Analysis and Meditation. psychic ability. darting across the entire network of my nerves only a moment before. thus neutralizing the dreadful burning effect of the devouring fire within. a miracle happened. He theorized that there existed a biological mechanism in the human body. Goel Another interesting testimony is that of B. I was doomed. and exhausted state of consciousness. S.. His uniqueness lies in his experience of classical psychoanalysis along with meditation. cascading shower of brilliant vital energy into my brain. Could it be that I had aroused Kundalini through pingala or the solar nerve which regulates the flow of heat in the body and is located on the right side of Sushumna'? If so. pouring an effulgent. With my mind reeling and senses deadened with pain. What he practiced as a remedy reminds a lot the practice of Kriya Pranayama. B. tasting the bliss of relief with a mind flooded with emotion. Gopi Krishna believed that this experience began a process in himself in which his whole nervous system would slowly be reorganized and it would be transformed. In that extraordinarily extended. I thought desperately and as if by divine dispensation the idea flashed across my brain to make a last-minute attempt to rouse Ida. wrote about the mystical experience and the evolution of consciousness from a scientific point of view.

if you do nothing. Here you will find some urgent actions to do. sit with erected spine and concentrate all your mental strength in the point between the eyebrows." About "pierced". He adds that: "as long as he does not reach that stage. In 1982.Psycho-analysis and Marxism. He quotes "the great desire for being pierced and penetrated. he opened an ashram in the Himalayas to help and guide other aspirants who had Kundalini experiences. 1. He explained that "when the consciousness marches toward Bindu (which he calls Brahma-randhra) the ego-formations will get exposed before the consciousness in free-associations. apart late Swami Satyananda Saraswati who studied the role of Bindu point. in the occipital region. among a lot of signals he had the courage to quote one in particular whom is not usually treated in book but in those book who want of mimic all the gurudom matter. This phenomenon has happened to all saints and it is only a fleeting experience. There is nothing to fear! All may cease by itself but. you can also live a couple of days in a state of emotional instability. were false ways to happiness. in dreams. What is interesting for us is that Dr." A Down-to-Earth Approach The real problem is the fear caused by the first signs of Kundalini awakening. Goel talks about the different degrees of suffering he went through as his ego was destroyed and rebuild. Usually this fear (which can be real anguish) is absorbed in a short time. Use all your imagination to raise a fresh current up the spine. out of ego-ignorance "turn into the desire of passive anal-penetration. This is exactly what Gopi Krishna did to get out of his awful situation. He was the first. and above all. he exemplifies it with the "desire of putting a nail at the midpoint between the two eyebrows. he may often indulge in compulsive homo-sexuality. both of which he had embraced. Repeat this until you feel something changing. When you feel uncontrolled movement of energy in your spine accompanied by a warm (or hot) sensation and you feel fear. in free writings. It is very probable that many saints of all ages might have remained great homosexuals if they had stopped their spiritual efforet in their pre-sainthood period.having closed somehow the right nostril. while discussing "signals toward the final goal". even if for a couple of days they feel they are walking in equilibrium on a rope between mental health and alienation. In the last part of the book. 159 . About "penetrated". in meditation itself. He told him the only path to inner peace and joy was through God. especially during the first months of their commitment. without problems." He clarifies that an ordinary sexual act cannot satisfy the person who need really penetrated at the Bindu to get final spiritual bliss. This can be done by inhaling through the mouth or through the left nostril -. he clarifies that the desire of penetration at Bindu may. This is what happens to many kriyabans.

If this is respected. 160 . Sit quietly and practice slowly. after a Thokar on Muladhara. In Kriya Pranayama you are taught to feel the coolness and the warmth of the breath to balance Ida and Pingala. In one commentary by Lahiri Mahasaya to the sacred writings. If you stay longer at the coccygeal center. use at least a mild form of Uddiyana Bandha to raise the energy up. So after getting up again. It can help one to cover all the spiritual journey in a safe way. When you practice Higher Kriyas. You can also resume the most simple form of Kriya Pranayama and create a very deep relaxed mood: after Kriya Pranayama. after some days or weeks. maintain the contraction for a couple of seconds and relax. You can have more than one session in order to complete 108 repetitions. Beside this. 3. the crisis is overcome. This is of course the goal of Kriya Yoga. but intensely. It is difficult to sustain that gloomy mood . 5. A routine which is totally based on a strong concentration on the Sahasrara is not appropriate for beginner or medium level students. follow the given instructions to push the energy up. Don't be in a hurry: each hold and relax should last at least four seconds. you should start practicing Kriya. if it is combined with Maha Mudra. Contract all the muscles at the base of the spine." If you use Thokar and hit the Muladhara Chakra and you don't integrate this with other practices. do not focus too insistently upon eliminating them. 6. try to have plenty of physical activity. The action of Thokar is very strong and it is difficult to assimilate its psychological effects. Kriya is a path in which one tries to awaken Kundalini by preparing the ground for its awakening in a sure way. the result is mainly a state of greyish mind that appears in the day following the practice. 108 Mula Bandha. 4. Utilize this practice in those days when you feel yourself too much nervous. it is written: "Being tranquil at the coccygeal center. Repeat. either by adapting to your purpose some Higher Kriya techniques or by extrapolating other procedures from the classic Hatha Yoga. this action can never cause problems. but you might be non prepared for that. give the same concentration to all other Chakras and always end by concentrating on the point between the eyebrows. try to attune to calmness in the point between the eyebrows. After studying the theory of knots (Granthis). remember that it was conceived to be the foundation of an intrinsically healthy method. is as if your soul is scratched. do not stay longer. you take back Kriya Pranayama. Forget the breath. the feeling of having found again the state of mind of the best times.2. if you have not the time to practice Navi Kriya. The signal that will point out that everything has started over normally working is to feel a particular joy. Building a strong magnet in Sahasrara is the most powerful way to stimulate the rising of Kundalini. The final concentration on Sahasrara should be prepared by a long concentration on the point between the eyebrows. Therefore. depressed or having any panic attack. Navi Kriya and Yoni Mudra. if you concentrate for some time on Muladhara. then negative Samadhi will take place.

There are many pseudo spiritual/occult activities that won't lead you anywhere. Unclean is a path polluted by new age.. namely like ordinary rope-knots. The worst of certain schools is that after having destroyed the attraction toward real life. in a short time. without taking all the care not to destroy the organ and kill the patient. [. Our internal knots are not as we usually visualize them. Keep your path always clean. 8.] Not only is Kumbhaka the essential element of real Pranayama but it is also the source of danger in the practice of Pranayama.. the danger is certain. Don't cultivate stupid theories according to which all your problems originate from the blockage of this or that Chakra. To be entangled in this activity is an amazingly easy way of destroying. Chennai. they teach you to create a virtual reality with the strength of your imagination. The moment one starts retaining the breath. they are subtly inter-twined.. USA) writes: "Kumbhaka affects the flow of pranic currents in a very marked and fundamental manner and enables the Yogi to gain increasing control over these currents.. channeling.. Don't utilize techniques that work on a single Chakra with the hope of unlocking it. Be always cautious with Kumbhaka (holding your breath).You risk to enforce those very knots you want to eliminate. Increasing gradually the repetition of these basic procedures is always the best choice! 7. The famous author J. magic. India • Wheaton. A clean path reaches the core of Kriya as fast as an arrow. They have a kind of mutual dependence. whereas they were human wrecks. especially after inhalation. If from a certain school you have received visualization techniques with the suggestion that sooner or later your visualization will become reality. If it is taken up without the necessary preparation and guidance it is sure to lead to disaster. it is the basis of a boundless series of New Age methods. years of genuine spiritual effort. occult rituals. polish up your path and life forever from such a trash. spiritualistic practices. [. Between the two extreme eventualities: to never hold your breath or to overuse Kumbhaka. I remind Jung's words: "The deliberately induced psychotic state.] Kumbhaka unlocks the doors of unexpected experiences and powers. Thokar. Be realistic and notice how in that ambient you have met persons who went around pretending to be spiritual. The visualization procedure brought to the extreme limit is useless and treacherous. Il. which in 161 . esoteric.K. chose an intermediary percentage of seconds of Kumbhaka.. You believe you are very spiritual but you are entering the kingdom of alienation. Taimni in his The science of Yoga (The theosophical publishing house Adyar. one inside the other. Don't be like a surgeon who wants to remove a gallstone embedded in a organ. in any abnormal manner the danger begins and one can never know what it will lead to." Kumbhaka is very powerful and in Kriya Yoga it is adopted with special procedures: Yoni Mudra. Always remember that when you do a purely mental work that doesn't envisage verification. Unfortunately. Regulate this percentage according to your ability to bear the originated power. Remember that the balanced techniques of Kriya Pranayama and of Omkar Kriya patiently but safely work upon all the knots simultaneously...

receive messages) from a dimension you have created in your mind and that exists only for you. like taking antibiotics if you do not have an infection. G. never relax your guard and never stop using the common sense. This attitude can produce disasters. You should not cultivate disgust for all that is interesting and enthusiastic in life and see everyday life as an illness. Lahiri Mahasaya admits in his diary that at times his sexual desire was really strong. There is a more moderate vision which deems the condition of chastity is linked with conserving the energy. Don't amputate your individuality and your desires.. If you learn other methods of meditation. according to Jung. renouncement of a family. Introduction to The Tibetan book of the Dead ] What are. don't start a war against yourselves. Some kriyabans try uselessly to reach this state with a certain obsession and state authentic nonsenses (the married kriyabans practice sex once in a year only to give birth to children). these attitudes are simply toxic.. is a danger that needs to be taken very seriously indeed. These things really are dangerous and ought not to be meddled with in our typically Western way. but without being obsessive. the "deliberately induced psychotic states"? Unfortunately he does not explain it in detail and does not bring examples. Meditation relaxes the mistrustful side of your personality. Don't cut yourself from everything interesting and thrilling in life. Jung. There is the danger to accept theories which throw you off balance. One day a disciple put him a direct question: "How can one be definitively free from sexuality?" He replied in a way that let struck dumb the disciple: "I will be free from sexuality only when my body will lie on the funeral pyre."C. Any mystical practice that is combined with an unbalanced life style is harmful. moving toward abnormal ways of living and behavior like avoid facing life challenges. It is a meddling with Fate. have a relationship (listen to voices.certain unstable individuals might easily lead to a real psychosis." God bless his sincerity! Very strangely some are inclined to take the afore quoted episode from Lahiri Mahasaya's life as a sign . that he was not spiritually realized! 162 . Terrible is the refusal of love. that alienate you from the society you are in. If you are not a monk or nun. However it is not difficult to understand that a psychotic state is the one in which you see things that do not exist. which strikes at the very roots of human existence and can let loose a flood of sufferings of which no sane person ever dreamed. I am referring to teachings that poison you against the world. Even the most rational and intelligent person becomes an idiot that believes in impossible things. Do not impose chastity to yourself. you will tend to override your inner wisdom receiving wounds in various subtle ways. 9.

Since I think the consideration of this parallelism very useful for a kriyaban.NDE. It is like having a volcano erupting inside. a ''rocket'' shooting up through the spine! Other times. you know how this event brought you to the edge of Eternity. Then the feeling of having arrived at a threshold and being sent back to one's body -.seems to conclude the experience. the repetition of such experience gives you an unshakable certainty of the value of spiritual techniques. If you are having this experience as a result of Kriya practice. For you it remained the most real experience.suddenly you are inside an immense joy and wake up with tears in your eyes. If you have had a similar experience. You have the means to be your own "doctor" and let the effects of the blissful experience grow and mix with your life. No one can come to you claiming that Selfrealization is something happening in the realm of your thoughts -.often with deep reluctance to return there -.How should one behave when the experience of a substantial and spontaneous rising of energy through the spine happens? This state usually lasts from few instants to a couple of minutes. of floating above one's own body and seeing the surrounding area. You know that this is nonsense. It many appear as a series of bliss waves rising through the spine and entering the an awakening of wisdom obtained by keen sophistication. it may appear like an intense bliss in the chest region -. But this flash of intuition is impossible without the body experiences a very particular state. 163 . offering a unique opportunity to glimpse it. The awareness is pulled through it. You have had this experience first in your body and then your way of thinking has received a shock. propagating from feet up to head. We find the feeling of moving upward. I counsel Kriya students to read Life beyond Life by Raymond Moody. and with spiritual figures (beings of light). I would like to point at the similarity with a near death experience -. Each individual interprets such meetings according to their own culture and expectations. The whole experience is lived within a feeling of endless love and peace. you won't feel disoriented. In the stories of those who had a NDE experience. that announces the experience. It is like a plunge into Eternity. through a tunnel or a narrow corridor. Some call this experience "Kundalini awakening". burning with endless joy for several seconds -you are filled with the euphoria obtained by this short but unforgettable glimpse of your eternal nature. we find some details in common with the afore hinted experience. paradoxically the most "alive" of your existence. Some spiritual seekers crown their laziness by indulging in the thought that it is our very idea of not having achieved Enlightenment that prevents us from getting it. as a result of a serious accident. The deepest experience is when the point (Bindu) in the center of Kutastha emerges and expands into a tunnel. If not refused or repressed. Sometimes it is an electric wind on the surface of the body. Some accounts include meetings with deceased relatives.

In order to become an Emancipated Soul. They repeat hastily some general guidance and go away. Their lack of spiritual realization is. one should never forget that experience. Those who had this experience are like one who.If one who has had this experience asks me what to do. I invite him to go ahead with the Kriya practice and avoid going to "traveling gurus" to tell what has happened. dead in appearance. 164 . it hasn't turned into a "divine Ego". Therefore the path to enlightenment should begin now and there is no step that can be disregarded. Enlightenment is to be achieved giving all oneself to draw that experience down into the earthly dimension of life. Sometimes it is a hard work. They have no time to take care of anyone. But this has no importance. really remarkable. but nothing in life can be obtained without hard work. But this is not enough. in some cases. They may even don't recognize the authenticity of the experience. interesting is the fact that their Ego is intact. continually working for retrieving and deepening. had visited the afterworld and then had returned to walk again amongst human beings.

I actually think that there have been a mistake not to include Nadi Sadhana among the basic technique of First Kriya. This work has nothing to do with the soft. In chapter 11. one discovers to have entered a natural meditation state. we shall discuss a particular way of perfecting Kriya Pranayama. you can counsel an alternate routine . I came to the conclusion that Nadi Sodhana Pranayama is far more important then it is currently thought. tied to introversion and to the state of rest) flows vertically along the left side of the spinal column. Actually. we shall focus about how to guide a student to experience the breathless state. It is very important to balance Ida and Pingala currents. It goes without saying that there is no point in introducing students to Kriya if they do not succeed in this routine regularly for at least 3 to 6 weeks. But for those whom you deem won't be able to carry on the discipline of Kriya. Ida (feminine in nature. If one has already practiced Pranayama for months (either classic Pranayama or Kriya Pranayama alike) there is no need of tests. How to test a student's predisposition for Kriya In my opinion a teacher should always test a student's predisposition for Kriya. tied to extroversion and to the state of physical activity) flows parallel to Ida on the 165 . We add also an appendix explaining how a person who has received Kriya from an organization. I have chosen Nadi Sodhana because after years of research and experimentation. In chapter 12. Ujjayi with or without Aswini Mudra and a deep concentration on the point between the eyebrows.CHAPTER 10 BUILDING THE BEST FOUNDATION FOR THE KRIYA YOGA PATH In the present chapter and in following 11 and 12. the four phases of Kriya Yoga. can tread completely the highest path without including in his routine other practices that those already learned from the organization. many important patterns of energy imbalance disappear. We shall begin by introducing the most important tool to obtain a real transformation of one's personality: the "incremental routine".I usually counsel the one I have myself practiced at the beginning of my path and hinted at in chapter 1. if one practices it for about 20-30 minutes of practice. I will summarize the practical difficulties that can appear if you don't want to communicate a recipe to be followed always in the same way throughout life but disclose a challenging but very engrossing way to realize one after another. while Pingala (masculine in nature. sleepy daily routines we all know. I am going to share in my didactic opinions about how a student should be guided from the first steps of Kriya Yoga to the last attempts at reaching the lofty state of Samadhi. Besides. which is not discussed in Kriya literature. The routine consists of: Nadi Sodhana (with the three Bandhas after inhalation while holding the breath). a beginner receives a dramatic transformation from it.

Using a suggestive image. They cannot achieve a watchful but peaceful alertness which is the base itself of the meditative state. I have chosen Ujjayi because it is the best preparation to Kriya Pranayama. the more they tend to become equal. a Kriya teacher said that Ida and Pingala are so tangled up around the base of the spine that our awareness cannot enter the innermost channel of the spine during Kriya Pranayama practice. and there is an increase of the faster beta waves (13-40 oscillations per sec. The amount of alpha waves therefore shows to what degree the brain is in a state of relaxed awareness. this alternation is characterized by a balance between a life of positive relationships and a serene contact with one's own depths. there are four types of brain waves.right side. They are mostly to be found when the person has closed eyes. During deep sleep delta waves are predominant (1-4 oscillations per second). the excessively introverted persons tend to lose contact with the external reality. 166 . We know that there are moments of the day when we feel more externalized. Those who practice it and pay due attention to the natural throat sounds will begin to perceive the energy that flows up and down the spine. Unbalance between Ida and Pingala is be blamed for the lack of introversion-extroversion harmony in many people. Unbalance between Ida and Pingala is a serious problem for those who try to internalize their consciousness. is mentally relaxed. the alpha waves are weakened. EEG measurements have shown that the amount of alpha waves increases during meditation.). The excessively extroverted person betrays frailty in dealing with what comes up from their unconscious and might face unexpected distressing moments. The consequence is that the ups and downs of life seem to gang up against them in order to undermine their peaceful composure. But this is well-known. In a normal brain. or the person is distracted in some other way. On the contrary. Nadi Sodhana creates that perfect balance which is the best condition to begin the practice of Kriya Yoga. depending on what one is doing. but still awake and able to experience.). In a healthy person. while predominance of the Pingala leads to a state of extroversion.) dominate. a spontaneous shift in balance occurs between left and right. We are interested that a greater balance of alpha waves between the brain halves after Nadi Sodhana is proved. I don't like quoting scientific research invigorating the good of a technique. When the eyes are opened. The brain waves that interest us the most are the alpha waves (8-13 oscillations per sec. But in the case of Nadi Sodhana is obligatory. We can measure separately the amount of alpha waves in each part of the brain and discover that the more we practice Nadi Sodhana. As you know. and in a dozy the theta waves (4-8 oscillations per sec. Sushumna flows in the middle and represents the experience halfway between the two: the ideal state to be achieved right before the practice of Kriya. others when we are more internalized. Over functioning of the Ida channel results in introversion.

During the pause. twelve of them. there are complaints that one of the nostrils is permanently obstructed. and the chin tilts down toward the breast. Keeping the left nostril closed. The easy but extremely effective technique of the "forward bendings" we are going to discuss in this chapter (see: "A valuable variation of Maha Mudra in three parts") can be coupled with Nadi Sodhana bringing immediately visible benefits. Close the right nostril with your right almost ecstatic internal shiver. that is a problem of medical solution. uniformly and deeply inhaled through the right nostril. no Pranayama exercise should be practiced. 3 Om.Nadi Sodhana Pranayama.are contracted in an attempt to lift the abdominal muscles in a vertical way. while pressing back the inferior part of the abdomen. A famous Kriya school emphasize the utility of Viparita Karani either before of after Nadi Sodhana. To begin this exercise. six cycles can be made. Time can be measured through mental chanting of Om. Hold the breath for a count of six Om. the right nostril must be kept closed by the right thumb and air is slowly. It is important to clean the nostrils before beginning the exercise. once again slowly. In this variation. Uddiyana Bandha (in a simplified form useful for this exercise) consists in slightly contracting the abdominal muscles in order to intensify the perception of energy inside the spinal column. In the beginning. the mouth must be closed. If the obstruction is caused by a severe cold. the nostrils exchange their role. this is Jalandhara Bandha. closing the right nostril with the thumb. later. Inhale through the left nostril till you count. A yogi can use a mental count to make sure the time is the same for both the inhalation and the exhalation. so that the breath can flow smoothly. the three Bandhas are applied simultaneously to produce an internal awakening of the Prana. retention and exhalation is denoted as 1:4:2. Practice the three Bandhas intensively. the exhalation is made through the left nostril. Let us remind the definition of Bandhas: when the neck and the throat are slightly contracted. the choice depends on the preference of the practitioner only. Close the left nostril. the yogi closes the left nostril with the right little finger and the ring finger . Release the 167 . uniform and deep rhythm. uniformly and deeply. air is slowly. The nostrils can be closed with the fingers in different ways. Variation. uniformly and deeply inhaled through the left nostril. In some cases. During Mula Bandha. you'll feel a sensation of energetic current sliding up along the spinal column . The short pause follows. The inhalation lasts from six to ten seconds. At this point. It is important not to overdo it to the point of discomfort. After having inhaled through the left nostril. In time. A short pause. happens after each inhalation. amounting to a mental count of three. the exhalation should last twice the time necessary for the inhalation and the pause after the inhalation should be four times as long. the perineum muscles between the anus and the genital organs . This can be commonly done using water or inhaling eucalyptus essence and blowing the nose. The ratio of inhalation.of the same hand. This corresponds to one cycle. Then. slowly. The one exhales through the right nostril with the same slow. Imagine that you are drawing Prana with the inhaled air.

Do the whole cycle at least 3 times. How to introduce a student to Kriya Yoga I would avoid the particular frenzy that accompanies a traditional Kriya initiation where all the practical instructions are transmitted hastily in one single lesson! 2 I have found that it is more natural and logical to teach the Kriya techniques a bit at a time and let one experience each without any tension. Now forget the breath. and Yoni Mudra. producing a sound/noise in the throat. The current is perceived striking against the Muladhara Chakra and awakening Kundalini. After a few days practice. It does good to focus not only on the process itself. otherwise the decision risks being postponed indefinitely! In the first lesson I would not teach Navi Kriya. Even when it's necessary to demonstrate all the techniques in First Kriya for reasons of expediency. instead to Dantian. A mental count makes sure that the inhalation and the exhalation have the same duration. and after a lifelong work.Bandhas and slowly exhale through the right nostril counting 6 Om. 168 . the attention is intensely focused on the point between the eyebrows. Ujjayi Pranayama. The exercise can be further improved by strong concentration on Dantian during Kumbhaka. retention and exhalation is always 1:4:2. the respiratory action is lengthened without effort. for at least five minutes. 2 Within a few days. that could appear unpleasant and source of disturbance. almost all details are forgotten and one goes through a crisis. During the exhalation. All this helps awaken Kundalini. This is what usually happens with mass initiations. Great Swami Sivananda of Rishikesh counseled to send the current down to the Muladhara Chakra. with an attitude of deep relaxation. whose "moment" will come in time. Of course. I don't advise waiting for a "perfect" situation before starting to practice. and limit Kriya Pranayama to first part only. I do not recommend starting out with a complete practice. Feel that Prana is intensifying in that region. Repeat the process from the right nostril. their full meaning is finally realized. The technique consists of breathing in and out deeply through both the nostrils. Gradually you can increase the count of Om while holding the breath up to 12 counts. Things may of course go differently! Some rare people will always remember the few words of their teacher with the same voice inflection. during Kumbhaka. This exercise is normally practiced twelve times. this allows the concentration to become deeper. the noise is not as loud as during the inhalation. The ratio of inhalation. but on the comfort and the induced calmness as well. With your breath held pull your abdominal muscles in synchronizing these movements with mental chanting of Om or with the syllables of your favorite Mantra.

one can taste the power that is born from a practice which is limited just to those two techniques. it pulls on some cranial bones and leads to decompression in the Rudra Granthi area. 1. The importance of mental Pranayama at the end of a routine. generate sensitivity in the Ajna Chakra area in a very short time. the perception of the Sushumna Nadi has increased tremendously. They lead a kriyaban to a state that is considered a "benediction." Oddly enough. Mental Pranayama has a divine beauty. P. You can ask that some meditation sessions are composed only of Talabya Kriya and Om Japa followed by ten seconds of enjoying the induce calmness. A good teaching is to practice one Maha Mudra every 12 Kriya Pranayamas until one begins to feel the currents in the spine. A kriyaban should never override them. Kriya Yoga becomes a self imposed torture. can. the preliminary techniques are Talabya Kriya and the chanting of Om in the Chakras. The importance of Talabya Kriya and Om Japa. Furthermore. without it I can bet that (unless one is sustained for years by the excitement of the illusions created in him by a process of indoctrination) one abandons Kriya Yoga unfailingly. Y. a life sentence. The importance of Maha Mudra. and the Om sound. Some organizations. 169 . it is purely physical. When the tongue is fully extended. According to their accounts. maintaining the suction effect on the palate for 10-15 seconds. The calmness they induce in a couple of minutes is stunning. There are reports of yogis having achieved fantastic experiences using only this technique. These are wonderful techniques but in Lahiri Mahasaya's Kriya. 3. a nightmare. When this happens. The second technique concerns the listening to the internal (astral) sounds. choose to give Hong So and Om techniques for six months. At the end of a routine a kriyaban must enjoy mental Pranayama for at least ten minutes. There are kriyabans who have set all the other Kriya aside and have been practicing 144 Maha Mudra in two sessions daily. Without mental Pranayama. An important point is to make one feel the difference between Kriya Pranayama with and without Maha Mudra. we can remark that merely pressing the tongue against the upper palate. The first technique calms the breath and the psychophysical system. picked out some easy techniques as a preparation. in their didactic effort to bring Kriya Yoga to people. in and of itself. It is very wise that a kriyaban practice Maha Mudra both before Kriya Pranayama and after it. The detail of extending the tongue plays an important part too. They consider Maha Mudra the most useful technique of all Kriya Yoga. Talabya Kriya doesn't require concentrating on anything. the second lesson should be devote to emphasize the details that really matter.After a couple of weeks. 2.

armed with patience and circumspection. But for them it is a great satisfaction to discover that all the best in them comes out amplified. For them it is not a tragedy to not see the spiritual eye. The main quality of Kriya students is to handle Kriya Pranayama as a joyous discovery. Yoga principles. especially in nature. Although they look at this technique with caution. internal joy. and at times obsessive. Their perceptions change and they discover the many beautiful aspects of life. The importance of listening to internal sounds. This happens by listening to the internal sounds.4. prepares a meal taking care of all the details. Paradoxically. in wanting to have all the possible and imaginable details of Kriya Pranayama clarified. thoughts calm down and won't disturb. adopting an attitude like that of a serious maid who. is the first duty of a kriyaban -. Remaining absorbed in them until they become the Om sound. looking what is around. which it is not emptiness but fullness. from the tedious task of peeling potatoes to the final art of putting the finishing touches. It is as if they had eyes and heart for the first time. Students should have the quality of a self teacher and be able to use their common sense to slightly adapt the instructions to the contingencies of their own life. Almost each Kriya student has difficulty in understanding the object of Kriya meditation. Later. "meditation" consist in the elaboration of lofty thoughts supported by fervid imagination. with the Reality that is beyond mind. "Meditation upon what?" is the common question. it is easier for most to give up a harmful habit because of a new ecological vogue rather than being able to grasp and analyze in depth the enslaving mechanism of any bad habits. like Patanjali's rules of conduct. inexplicable elation appears. They are overcome with a feeling of love they thought themselves incapable of. a sweet comfort. at the beginning of their efforts. intellectual and artistic the highest way of living the experience of Kriya meditation. are not easy to put into practice. others discover the wonder of their work. a source of wellbeing and mirth and rely on the sheer "naturalness" of the procedure. they are not too insistent. In time. Often. A teacher should avoid censorial attitudes and pretend he does not notice some problematic delusive student's behavior. They don't call their teacher every other day with questions that are overly intellectual. they practice it comfortably. while are deeply moved by the significance of their family. A Kriya teacher lays his confidence in the transforming Kriya effect. Some rediscover an almost forgotten potentiality of aesthetic enjoyment. there is always a clear split between a kriyaban's new spiritual interest and other wellrooted social. The signs of progress are very subtle and instable. 170 . The right attitude of the teacher and of the student A teacher should get over the fact that at the onset of the Yoga path. Is perhaps Kriya meditation the awareness of inner bliss? Kriya meditation is surely this but is also the meeting with the Ineffable.

They will suffer qualms of guilt and develop all kinds of paranoia. and attending kirtans . They don't show trust in the naturalness of Kriya but believe that the miracle can spring only from an impeccable execution of the magic recipe that Kriya represents for them. They will soon get tired of asking questions and will eventually abandon everything. listening to taped spiritual talks. They do not understand how important it is first to relax and enjoy. Many turn to experienced people (all organizations have "meditation counselors") to ask for suggestions. How many times. kriyabans will eventually reach a standstill and further progress appears impossible. but only partly and for a short time. Now. This is a "law" no one escapes. Many achievements like listening to the internal sounds. 171 .Unfortunately. by readings. the risk of boredom and loss of enthusiasm is great. Either they have been led astray by some text or they have not the faculty of understanding the spiritual dimension of life. and occasionally insensitive attitude they have in life — especially if they are full of esoteric and "magical" ways of thinking.this is the reproach. then their loyalty is immediately questioned. but as soon as they make known their reservations on the validity of their routine. Few know how to get out of this unexpected situation in a positive way. they are told outlandish stories about loyal kriyabans who had a true spiritual experience only on their death bed! "A loyal disciple doesn't lament working for years or for an entire life without getting any visible results!" -. practicing a fixed routine for a period of time is one thing. unvarying routine. the more problems they will have.. The more they strive. whereas doing it for one's entire life is something else! A yogi wrote that the hope of obtaining a deep internal change by repeating an identical set of techniques during an entire lifetime is comparable to hitting a piece of iron once a day in the hope that the atomic energy it contains will someday be released. Such a fixed routine is the best practice for beginners.. Unfortunately. After getting through the initial phase. or on the possibility of Kriya Yoga to produce any actual changes in the personality. Instinctively many succeed in rekindling their enthusiasm. definitely will happen by practicing a fixed. This is the danger point where interest and passion for Kriya is very close to waning completely. It is as if their knowledge is a shield preventing the genuine beauty of Kriya from entering their life. seeing the spiritual eye. There is no doubt that one should continue to practice through seemingly unproductive phases and will still get valuable experiences. CONSOLIDATING THE KRIYA PATH THROUGH THE INCREMENTAL ROUTINES Kriyabans customarily practice the same standard techniques day in and day out changing neither the sequence nor the number of repetitions. and then to work on refinements. some Kriya students show in Kriya the same eager. And it is a grace when they leave. impatient. An unvarying routine that always takes the same amount of time is what is recommended by many organizations.

a decision that should only be inspired by one's intuition. What happens in athletics gives us much rich material upon which to reflect. one should sense if it is necessary to stop the practice for a few weeks or whether a technique should be done less intensely. Kriya is not a sport but in the beginning stages of Kriya. You have to be intelligent. All of this is beneficial. This is a cleansing effect and does not damage you. This process has within itself an equilibrating mechanism which will prevent one from being overwhelmed by sudden storms of grey moods.In the first part of the book I have hinted at the Incremental Routines. Only through short intensive interval training sessions where they push their physical and mental endurance beyond their normal levels. irreplaceable effect on one's personality. I have witnessed unbelievable results in those who have completed Incremental Routines. I take all the care to explain that it is important to be aware of our unconscious resistance to undergo change. fancies. The Kriya techniques arouse specific effects (especially perceived in the day following the practice) in many ways: moods. However. familiar with the basic laws of human psyche. For these reason. when I trust the earnestness of the student. Kriya Pranayama and Thokar and practice them intensively with progressive increments of the number of repetitions. The results obtained prove that an Incremental Routine is one of the most worthwhile activities a kriyaban can engage in. I strongly recommend that a student focus on fundamental Kriya techniques like Navi Kriya. will they succeed in accomplishing otherwise unachievable levels of performance. a mature act of trust in Kriya and in oneself. memories and suddenly-arising desires. naturally. Accept however to have humors full of ups and downs. that this process is an authentic challenge and beginning it is an act of courage. You have to be acquainted with the principle of unconscious resistance to change: they should understand the deep reasons of the alternating moods that appear when we practice intensely the Kriya techniques. I understand. Athletes who wish to achieve world class performance must somehow increase the intensity and the quality of their practice. it has many points in common with the essence of athletics. The experiences of inner awakening bring buried psychological problems to the surface. Both require self analysis: to analyze and evaluate one's performance and to learn from the experience. Do not be offended by the comparison between Kriya and sports. Both shun the employment of brutal force. These routines are the best foundation for a lifelong enjoyment of Kriya. After a beneficial pause of a couple of 172 . I always encourage them to begin at least one Incremental Routine. and both require a coach. To vividly live long forgotten parts of our life through our stimulated memory is a cleansing process. results that are inconceivable for those who follow a traditional practice. Since they have a unique. both require goals and the diligent channeling of one's strength toward achieving them. I give this counsel without lingering or investigating too much. and to understand the causes of the alternating moods that appear when a Kriya technique is practiced intensely. while applying its different psycho-physical techniques.

During long sessions. resume the original standard routine.. After a light meal and a little nap.. Of course. and finish with something like mental Pranayama.. On Sunday. You can conclude each part by lying on your back (Savasana: the corpse pose) on a mat for a couple of minutes. As for this variation. It rivets the attention in a way the basic form cannot. practice 16 sets of Navi Kriya. preceded and followed by chanting Om in the Chakras. If you try to outsmart the process and perform too many repetitions all at once. go for a long walk to calm the deep regions of your psyche. arrange to have a tranquil walk in the evening. In other words. or on any free day. Complete your routine with mental Pranayama as usual. It has been experimentally proved that there is no need to go beyond 36 x 20 repetitions.. Everything will proceed harmoniously and the effect increases as daylight approaches twilight. After one week.. it is fine to go out.. that is 8 sets. this is always to be done within the framework of Talabya. Maha Mudra. the forward. do three times the normal number of Navi Kriya: 12 sets.. after a short practice of Talabya Kriya.weeks. practice Navi Kriya with double the repetitions. Our inner obstacles cannot be removed in one day. On Sunday rest with Japa and go for a walk..up to 80 sets. not only because our constitution is not strong enough but also because our inner force for dissolving them is initially weak and must be enhanced week after week. nothing will come of it because the inner channels close up. The next steps are: 36 x 3. the "warrior" returns to the battlefield ready to bring their work to fruition. it is advisable to break these long sessions into two or three parts -. take a break from all Kriya practices and instead do a tranquil Japa. Maha Mudra and Kriya Pranayama. You can complete part of your practice early in the morning.. which is twenty times the original recommended number. since one set consists of 36 descents of energy. When you practice in your room.. and then reserve some time to contemplate nature.. backward.. It is up to you to make your practice days as pleasant as be completed before going to bed. I. find a pleasant place to sit.. For the next few days. 36 x 20. and so on .. Incremental Routine of Navi Kriya Here are the very words I use to introduce it: "On Saturdays.. when the benediction of blissful silence comes. and weather permitting. this process should be incorporated within a regular active life.36 x 19. The increase of this delicate Kriya technique should be gradual." I explain to the student that it is possible to choose any variation of Navi Kriya: the best is Variation 2 explained in chapter 7 (Variation 2. after the first half hour. 20. the process begins with 36 x 2 descents. carefully respecting every detail – and do the remaining prearranged number of repetitions in the afternoon. and sideways movement of 173 . Then you can become absorbed in your practice perfectly at ease. the head movements are hardly noticeable. or two if you wish. Its smooth shifting of energy along the circumference of the head has an unparalleled effect. 24. put aside the usual routine and.. Navi Kriya – Four Directions). Furthermore. 36 x 4. On the following Saturday.

the material side in the lower Chakras.the chin which is initially around five centimeters is reduced to three millimeters! What is the reason why this variation is preferable? After many repetitions of this variation of Navi Kriya. Although the healing is harmonious. harmony. you might hurt friends through your words and only hours later. That rupture between matter and spirit inside each human is the permanent source of excruciating conflicts in the lives of many spiritual searchers. A more calibrated. whereon my 174 . The personality of a kriyaban is destined to be ideally collected around a central point and all inner conflicts healed. the exhalation seems to become internal. yet while practicing one would swear it wasn't. establishes itself in the higher Chakras and in the head. One feels an inward order settling. it is possible you realize that those remarks were totally inappropriate. The effects are perceived inwardly and observed clearly in one's practical life. a very interesting phenomenon can be observed: at a certain moment. At the very moment the order to exhale has been imparted by the mind. often due to a kriyaban's newly acquired confidence and convictions that seems stubbornness or dogmatism. Let us try to understand why this problem appears frequently. notice how the same words resound in your mind in their cruelty. Accept also that traits of hardness might appear in your temperament. One has the impression one could remain there forever. Sustained by a luminous internal intuition. Some instants later comes the awareness of something subtle descending into the body. Intuition will flow freely and face the moments of life for which important decisions are expected to be made. It reminds me of Ahab in "Moby Dick" by Herman Melville: "Swerve me? ye cannot swerve me. The breath is still coming out of the nose. precise and clearer logical process will rise from a more efficient synergy between thoughts and emotions. and freedom. … The path to my fixed purpose is laid with iron rails. the visible manifestations can be interpreted negatively by others. With great embarrassment. it feels as if the lungs can not move. Some kriyabans find themselves uttering statements they feel are sincere but others find offensive and cutting. being alone and detached. each action seem as if it were surrounded by a halo of calmness and heading right for the goal. like an internal all-pervading pressure which brings about a peculiar feeling of well-being. Through this incremental routine and through conscious effort of harmonizing in our daily life the two dimensions of Spirit and matter. the healing of this rupture takes place. Main remarks about this Incremental Routine. The exhalation is a mental act. It is explained that the cutting of the umbilical cord at birth splits a unique reality into two parts: the spiritual. Let us therefore see what is the meaning of the knot of the navel. A good effect of this practice is to discover a striking increase in mental clarity probably due to the strong action on the third Chakra which governs the thinking process. accompanied by a very pleasurable exhalation. which manifests as joy and calmness. This may be considered the first timid apparition of the Pranayama with the internal breath.

This should be planned with great care: starting from 12. let us consider 18 repetitions: if there are no problems at all.36 x 20 Kriya Pranayamas is a very good plan.when you start again you respect the same principle to start from phase 1 etc. This is a physiological fact and we have all the reasons to suspect that those who affirm they are exempt from such phenomenon. Let us clarify what it means adding six repetitions per week. Let us clarify that during each stage of the process it is important to keep a slender thread of breath up to the completion of the prescribed number. the process should never become purely mental. The third week you can practice 24 repetitions on 175 . To many kriyabans this routine becomes an extraordinary journey in their own memory. I invite the student to begin a similar process with Kriya Pranayama. It is not necessary to practice every day.for example between morning and afternoon -. The Chakras are like jewel boxes containing the memory of one's whole life: they give rise to the full splendor of lost reminiscences.…. it is because they do not have enough lucidity to notice it. It happens. that by focusing our attention on the Chakras.. it is wise to make use of the 12 letter Mantra.soul is grooved to run. … Naught's an obstacle. Incremental Routine of Thokar The third invaluable Incremental Routine is based on the basic form of Thokar. 36 x 3. 24 x 3. naught's an angle to the iron way!" II. Let us add that when more than a 100 breaths are practiced. half completed).24 x 24 is lighter but also good. After the first week with 12 repetitions every day. We have already said that a kriyaban is instructed to gradually increase its repetitions. The essence of past events (the beauty contained in them and never fully appreciated) is lived again in the quiet pleasure of contemplation while our heart is. In other words phase 1 is never eliminated and after phase 2 you move on to phase 3 only after having practiced at least 48 breaths. we obtain a particular effect: the inner screen of our awareness begins to display a lot of images. III. Incremental Routine of Kriya Pranayama After some months (when Navi Kriya is completed or. Main remark about this Incremental Routine. at least. It is a revelation: the light of the Spirit seems to twinkle in what seemed trite moments of our life. which does not mean to apply all the subtle details of Omkar Pranayama but simply to use the beauty of the Mantra to overcome that normal boredom that would come by using only the Om Mantra. a kriyaban adds six repetitions per week. sometimes.…. The reason is that when you reach a consistent number of repetitions (more that 60) the effects are very strong. rather it is wise to work three days a week on the average. In other words. indeed. When the practice is broken in two or three parts -. 24 x 2. this amount of 18 repetitions can be practiced each day or every other day of the second week. It is clear that you practice in sequence the three phases of Kriya Pranayama abiding by what it was said in the chapters 6 and 7. 36 x 2. pervaded by a restrained cry.

creating a before previously unknown devotion. carrying out daily and worldly duties.. The fixed maximum of repetitions is 200. You feel you belong for Eternity to that heavenly dimension. (During the two previous Incremental Routines you let a minimum of six days pass by between two intensive practices. do not need anymore numbers and won't follow any indication.alternate days and so on. Enter. those improbable promises that books and gurus make to those interested in Yoga and meditation to attract them to the Kriya path. A Delicious Break: 20736 Omkar Pranayama In certain moments of life it is fine to take the pleasurable commitment of completing 20736 Omkar Pranayama breaths -.each one of them on the verge of exploding from bliss. important experiences happen. It is because of the intensity of this experience. that one learns to meditate without mental pollution. Who succeeds in such form of Thokar doesn't have the patience to gradually increase the number of the rotations. having in one's heart the reverberation of such a state. that the effect of Thokar has been described as "intoxicating". without being paralyzed by such a bliss! It is difficult to conceive how those devotees who never had a taste of such bliss are able to find the strength to continue practicing Kriya for years. comparing it with that of the mystics. Inspired by this new condition. the sweet dimension of the second phase of Kriya 176 . which keep one tied to this practice until the real experience happens. There comes the feeling of being divided into a thousand parts . Use your commonsense and let the process itself guide you. as if a mighty hand were squeezing the chest region. and without imaginings. which seems sometimes difficult to endure. A strength.. One feels like being immobilized by an immense strength.. as soon as possible. intensifies around the fourth Chakra. Main remarks about this Incremental Routine.either 144 each day for 144 days or 72 each day for 288 days.) As for the advanced form of Thokar (the one with a lot of rotations of the head) an incremental routine is not one thing that can be "recommended". Begin each session with Maha Mudra and then begin breathing like in Kriya Pranayama but using the Mantra Om Na Mo. one realizes how difficult it is to live. An endless Beauty.. During this process. It is only now. The dazzling point that you perceive in the center of your heart and that turns out to be the star inside the third eye gives a kriyaban a deeper experience. an internal abduction drives him in uncontrollable way.. Those who have achieved the breathless state and are able to hold effortless the breath during this practice. IV. This is not an Incremental Routine proper. but very similar in its intents -. You can only thank those uncertain illusions about works like a spiritual bulldozer giving you the ineffable experience of the Omkar Reality! Don't practice only pure Omkar Pranayama.

will open the doors of the spiritual realization. Then remain all the time halfway between Kriya Pranayama (second and third phase) and Omkar Pranayama. Amid the ruins of many illusions. illusion . whatever. When passion inflames one's whole being. Just like.Pranayama. They actually express a reality devoid of authentic profundity but their propulsive action inevitably results in hurried acts accompanied by a sort of cerebral fever. one has the feeling that entire eons have passed but that one has achieved something concrete and permanent. Unlike the incremental routine of Kriya Pranayama.. hail stones are molded. light. so many words without a practical meaning..I mean superficial emotions. it is not possible to be guided by common sense. nourished by a narrow. The immersion in the Omkar Reality plays an important role: life and spiritual experience become one. a.. But at the end of boring discussions you have not grasped the essential fact: untamed emotions can create a disaster in your life. the consequence is that our deeper and most earnest choices sometimes withdraw to an irrevocable halt. The Achievement of Emotional Maturity These routines teach a kriyaban how to keep emotions at bay -.. contentment. to disappear after a while. aggressiveness. of many lustrum. in the simplicity of its essence. After this once-in-a-lifetime experience. You shall merge in something so intensely beautiful. whenever it manifests. They distinguish between positive (affection. tremendously important. I have tried to retrace this theme in some oriental books but I have found so much rhetoric.) emotions. happiness.) and negative (envy. in a way that only deep sentiments guide their decisions. a persons seems "older". fatal 177 . visceral pleasure. In my opinion. condensed and enlarged in the air before falling down to the earth causing disasters. in wisdom and temperament. Global Results Achieved through the Completion of the Incremental Routines These three incremental routines put together are such that by the end of the process. This practice creates a burning aspiration which digs a stream of genuine devotion. don't be preoccupied of losing the thread of the breath: get all the time you need to pause in any Chakra to enjoy some particular Omkar experience. this procedure. The deepest layers of your psyche will be harmoniously affected. We all know that frantic and hysterical emotions often rise unexpectedly from one's inner self. Furthermore at a certain moment with your Omkar Pranayama you approach more and more the dimension of mental Pranayama.. kriyabans who do not face at least once in their life the incremental routines are always on the verge of losing everything they have realized. This fact is serious. It may be internal sound. during the summer..

Further. When we listen to such alluring emotions. and our pessimism. to remain calm. "reading" with objectivity the obtained results. The effect of yielding to emotions does not differ from that of an asteroid falling through the atmosphere on its way to fire and destruction. will disappear. ready to be cheated. Perhaps months 178 . you will have a deeper understanding of the technique because you will perceive its essence intuitively. our fears.decisions take shape in advance in one's imagination. while pretending to practice a lot -. serene.) These mechanisms may become our crucifixion. we pave the way for our doom. They practice very little. family and friends. flat. the quintessence of what we visualize when we use the term "mental health". especially once you have experienced different stages of the process: certain details become wearisome. now seems to glitter at the horizon of our life. The Ability of Standing on one's own Feet Another effect. our doubts. "Emotional maturity" is a healthy relationship with reality. During daily. and still other details that seemed meaningless will be amplified and greatly enhanced. in luminous azure blue. Our way of reacting to emotions is the seal protecting "our right to pain and suffering" (the sentence in quotation marks is an expression of The Mother. profession.satisfied that their Kriya be "the supreme among all the spiritual techniques. Other aspects will be revealed subsequently. is to gradually help an unsure and full of doubts kriyaban to become a self teacher. which you won't realize until much later. the airplane route to God realization". While practicing. somber sky that suddenly lights up. They harbor the illusion that Kriya be a series of secrets (of growing effectiveness as soon as they receive revelation of the Higher Kriyas) which function in an almost automatic way. the perspective of renouncing the fight throws a false light upon our immediate future. The incremental routines change one's life: they replace the infantilism of hanging on "authorized" teachers' every word with an objective estimate of the effects of each routine one has personally outlined. you will receive important clues. others. frequent daydreams. you don't imagine how remaining faithful to the Kriya path is a delicate operation that can suddenly go bad! We are governed by emotions and instinct that include our religious conditioning. Unfortunately most kriyabans begin their path as gullible persons. We can stupidly shed away our life. our weak points. so that what in the past would appear as an act of cowardice. b. only second in importance. to always go our way even when our closest friends are trying to convince us to follow theirs. In the days following the long sessions of practice. our covenant with unhappiness. like a dull. Most important is the ability to keep doubts at bay. Superficial emotions are not tamed by self-analysis. They give us the opportunity to detect mistakes in our understanding of a technique and to provide one or more corrective methods. able to be acutely creative and ameliorate day by day the execution of the techniques.

g. by contrast. one will have developed the quality of a selfteacher.or years after this incremental routine. 179 . When several Incremental Routines have been completed. but subsequently. While Kriya beginners are maniacal in preparing the proper meditation environment and become nervous and worried about the slightest thing. and meaningfully alter your point of view. we are right to put a certain amount of trust in a school or in a teacher. Before closing. one who has completed a couple of Incremental Routines is able to meditate in unusual places and impossible situations – e. At the very beginning of our path. a particular state of awareness. Strangely enough. let me say that one definite result is that you will learn to meditate anywhere and not be disturbed by anything. radically eliminating the danger of falling asleep and yielding unhoped-for results. Let us avoid bowing to the authority of itinerant Gurus: life is too precious to entrust it to another. We neither have nor need any other tools to verify the value of a technique. such occasions may establish. traveling by train or watching a play or an uninteresting movie. we have to trust our own experiences and experiments. A kriyaban will create a simple defensible vision of Kriya such that they do not feel the necessity of discussing their routine with other Kriya experts. you will be able to draw interesting connections or deductions.

choose a Mantra (prayer). I saw the eyes shining of joy and of boundless bliss of the few kriyabans who had a Japa-based approach. it is the true Initiation." On the contrary. The greatest help -. some procedures conceived for the express purpose of fostering this state. In my opinion. as we are going to discuss. which blooms by repeating our favorite Mantra.. is the most effective action we can do to obtain undreamed of results during the practice of our Kriya routine. but it is essential. Keeping the mind always attuned to a state of calmness. You should not feel obliged to use Lahiri Mahasaya's favored Vasudeva Mantra ("Om 180 . I mean that practice that in certain mystical traditions is called Continuous Prayer. I think that Kriya Yoga is the perfection of the spiritual path. each one frail and vulnerable. I would want to console those people that feel they are orphans of a Guru. a Mantra. they claim: "Neither my Guru. There are. that discover they are proceeding along the spiritual path without a guide. Let us connected to the teaching. for changing the atomic constitution of the cells of the spinal cord… As for Japa. this state appears during mental Pranayama naturally and spontaneously. You cannot live in a chaotic way and then sit to practice Kriya and then pretend that in an instant the mind becomes like a laser. to the atmosphere of the book The Way of a Pilgrim and The Pilgrim Continues His Way (Anonymous) because it is of that teaching that I want to speak now. You will cross moments in which only Japa will remain. It will remain when your Sadhana seems to break down in different clumsy attempts. I would like to tell them that in the breathless state they will find all the "blessings" they have not received before during a formal initiation. even when the vicissitudes of life attempt to destroy the very idea of the mystical dimension. after the transformation described in the previous chapter. I don't need it. nor Lahiri Mahasaya taught it. The mindful and devoted commitment we are describing in this chapter will provide kriyabans with the fundamental spiritual experience which will mark the most beautiful and deeply satisfying period of their life. How to Practice Japa If you want to test what I am here describing. while Japa (Continuous Prayer) is its foundation. not only you need it.I'm sure this is true. After the practice of the Incremental Routines. the breathless state is possible. Some kriyabans think that their discipline has nothing to do with prayer -". full mastery of the breathless state requires on the average two to three years of regular Kriya practice. There is one single action that heals and calms the mind: to repeat constantly a prayer. When the time is ripe.CHAPTER 11 A TURNING POINT: THE BREATHLESS STATE The breathless state is a decisive result that marks a turn in one's life: it is a stupendous revelation.Kriya Yoga is the best form of Pranayama for the awakening of Kundalini. at least for the vast majority of people -is extending one's spiritual commitment to the whole day..

they were a human discovery. It sometimes happens that when reciting a Mantra. but that's all! Your Mantra it is you that have to choose it. Hrom. They were not given by any divinity. Other Mantras express the absolute non-dual realization. their practice falls apart. placing one syllable in each different Chakra. As an example. Unfortunately. you find yourself reciting another. I want to be clear: I don't contest that an experienced person that helps you to choose a Mantra and uses everything of his power of persuasion to convince to apply it continually.Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya"). Hoom. Dúm. After a short time.. … These are sounds chosen for their power by ancient yogis. This has nothing to do with what we are describing here. After choosing a Mantra on your own. Shreem. because it should express exactly what you want to achieve. use it a few weeks to find out whether your body accepts it or not. like a sigh of dejection. There are some who choose a really unfortunate Mantra by which they seem to punish themselves: their chosen formula is an affirmation of their limits. 181 . after a few minutes. This and other signs mean you have not found the right Mantra and that your search must continue. I am that supreme Being. To a preexistent Mantra. from the well-known Adi Shankara's chant we can relish the beautiful verse: Chi-da-nanda-ru-pah-shi-vo-ham-shi-vo-ham (That Form which is pure consciousness and bliss. one can add some "Bija" (seed) Mantra: Aim. Certainly if you want to lighten your portfolio then race to a Teacher and buy your personal Mantra. To experience this first hand is what counts. "Strong tone" means that it is incompatible with an attitude of supplication and complaint. after the initial Om. You can choose one from your favorite set of prayers. 3 Personally I chose Ramdas' Mantra (8 syllables: Sri Ram Jay Ram Jay Jay Ram Om) during the day and Lahiri's (12 syllables: Om Na Mo Bha Ga Va Te Va Su De Va Ya) during the Kriya practice. I am that supreme Being!) I hope you are not so naive to believe that a Mantra works only if it is received from your Guru. Hreem. Haum.. one that has (by adding. Twelve is a perfect number because one can utilize it during Kriya. sometimes they find themselves repeating it once or twice during the day. Gam. Kreem. It is important to relish it. Glom. Literature or an expert can help one make a good choice. Your chosen Mantra should have both a strong and a soft tone. The selected prayer should imply the anticipation of a happiness which one is attracting through the very repetition of its syllables. a sense of unworthiness or condemnation of their behavior. literature excessively glorifies the virtue of traditional Mantra and experts tend to counsel everyone to practice their own beloved Mantra. the attitude of surrender is expressed by those Mantra beginning with Om Namo . if necessary. Kleem. Streem. you begin with enthusiasm but then. For example. Vang. This persons does you the greatest of all the favors and is correct to compensate him. Glamu. 3 Those who are familiar and have experience with Hatha Yoga and with the concept of Bija Mantra can forge wonderful Mantras. Om or Amen at the beginning or at the end) twelve syllables. Beautiful twelve syllables Mantra can be taken out of Bhajans or poems.

uttered one day a word: "EXHAUSTION". There was nothing to be surprised at when. It is for this reason that one must be wise and choose the simplest life appropriate to one's temperament. He looked with different eyes at the show of continuously changing landscape and had the impression of living in a paradisiac situation.which was nothing else than a sigh of self-pity. If life is too good with men they respond by filling their life with nonsenses. He did not realize he was about to become the greatest supporter of Japa. Wonderful books are: In Quest of God by Swami Ramdas and the The Way of a Pilgrim. but each time he practiced this Mantra during the day and Kriya Yoga in the evening. give yourself some inspiring literature. thanks to it. its vibration was not connected in any way to his body. This experience taught him the correct way of practicing Japa. Otherwise they clean their life if unnecessary necessities and through Japa. The ecstatic state assumed the consistency of reality. I talked to him about Japa but nothing changed. Take this aloud practice back whenever possible. He went on repeating the Prayer unremittingly for the entire path. What is required is the resolute will to continue with this action so we can touch the dimension of Mental Silence. Even if tired and almost gasping for breath. after some time. His thoughts were repeating it. I had the impression that he took this activity as cerebral act. If there happen problems of hardheartedness. which he definitely identified with the Spiritual Reality. While walking and praying softly. you will be surrounded by a protective shell of tangible peace . completely forgetting he was tired and sleepy. It was not for nothing he had put aside his initial beautiful Indian Mantra and chosen an expression in his mother tongue . For this reason I set as essential condition that life has not been very nice toward you. although they through suffering unavoidable setbacks.Resolve to daily complete aloud at least one Mala (a rosary of 108 beads) of this Mantra (prayer). became almost unbearable. But when you chant it concentrate upon it with absolute fervor. he entirely abandoned the practice. to which all the pilgrims united. he did not withdraw himself from this pious activity. they are always able to regain their composure and will be able to pass through life with a smile. murmuring under his breath. He said that the secret was not only to reach. he began to taste a state of unknown calmness. he had the grace to be left alone —undisturbed. One of my friends who mastered this teaching. overwhelming him. but also to go beyond the state of "exhaustion. He practiced Kriya without getting any result.this is not a visualization but a real experience. They are simple 182 ." After some experiments he chose to repeat the Indian Mantra: Sri Ram Jay Ram Jay Jay Ram Om and. The turning point came when he took part in a group pilgrimage. and then let it resonate automatically in your mind. There is no doubt that this requires additional time. The temptation to leave Japa aside is tremendous. You will learn how to make the sound of the Mantra (prayer) resound in our head and you will feel its vibration extending to all parts of our body. a tired plea for God's mercy. Someone began to recite the so-called rosary (a set number of repetitions of the same prayer). When this happens. I observed him carefully while he was practicing: I was witness of a lifeless practice. he reached the breathless state not only one time. When the group paused to rest. he slipped into an introspective state and was pervaded by something vibrating in his own heart.

J. You sits with your back upright. Remarks upon the Kriya routine Well. terrible. (Rumi. The Sufi literature. They inspire you to practice beyond the point of exhaustion. which explain with amazing simplicity everything essential about Japa. A kriyaban should be able to give one hundred percent effort and this cannot happen when there are inner conflicts which constantly threaten the unity of the personality. it simply releases an irresistible action from its recess". Live Japa as if it were the only tool capable of knocking down the wall that life has placed before you.Translated by A. For this purpose. but even from angelhood I must pass on: all except God doth perish. easily found. where a celebration of God and nature shines with a strength and amplitude beyond comparison. to soar with angels blest. ready to touch the fullness and the peace of silence. The Japa should become a genuine expression of your burning desire of extracting "something more" from the common way of living. The heart should be turned in one direction only. Why should I fear? When was I less by dying? Yet once more I shall die as Man. however it is from it that an action is born which changes your destiny. I died as plant and rose to animal. while the widened sensitivity will give you the impression of having become more fragile. Japa is apparently deprived of action. The eyes are closed. intelligence. But when you touch with your hand how hard. time. I shall become what no mind e'er conceived.books. Surely there are also web sites who can inspire you. more appealing than anything else. After practicing Maha Mudra and having found a comfortable position. and to feel the the goal as the nearest of the near. sometimes the noise coming from the external world will reach your ears as amplified. Some outward changes will begin to happen. otherwise you won't remain in the vibration of mental silence. and one must be aflame for it. you should bring ahead an internal alchemy and transform your sorrow in a form of internal dignity. vulnerable and defenseless. I died as animal and I was Man.NOT only mentally!) Japa in such a resolute way that the body becomes a unique solid vibration. when existence seems to offer nothing that is worth seeking. I died as a mineral and became a plant. and cruel life is. and constant self-observation are required. 183 . You might feel like one is in a difficult process of recovery. When I have sacrificed my angelsoul. One needs to be confronted with biographies of saints. you discovers that the same Mantra utilized during the day is going on by itself in your consciousness. let us take for granted that you have practiced all day long (aloud and mentally -. gives an idea of that state. Arberry)] The Mantra creates a total order in your life but you must also make every effort to think clearly and logically when necessary. Aurobindo wrote: "The mind does not act.

it is akin to our well known Omkar Pranayama and can be brought ahead for 24-36 breaths. the repetition of 20736 Pranayamas (in one session!) is sufficient to get to the state of Samadhi.implying an intention of detaching from the world. appease the heart ganglion which regulate the heart pulse. it is a happy invention!) that the Higher Kriyas like Thokar are taught to avoid sitting for such a long time and reach anyway the states of Dhyana (and. you bring back the attention to only one action: merging the inner chanting of the Mantra with a slow. I am not sure it comes from Lahiri Mahasaya himself. The idea of taking a long breath and chanting the Mantra during the inhalation and repeating it (or completing it) during exhalation will come naturally! With extreme calmness. you don't need any other practice! Sometimes it is necessary adding at least 12-24 Thokar. You can tell that this is not Kriya. A good solution is: Maha Mudra • Navi Kriya • Talabya Kriya • Om Japa • Kriya Pranayama (either part 1 and part 2 or all the 3 parts) • Thokar (12-24 repetitions of its basic form) • Omkar Pranayama (6 breaths only) • Kriya Pranayama (6-12 breaths of part 2) • Mental Pranayama where you will try to achieve the breathless state. He said also that: "Thokar opens the doors of the inner temple". the breathless state) and Samadhi. if this comes spontaneous. Well. If is not true. Thokar helps to calm. the repetition of 144 Kriya Pranayamas is sufficient to get to the state of Dharana. 4 I hope that recalling a theory which is often quoted in the Kriya literature is not disturbing. This is your routine. Prolong the beauty of this activity over a long period of time. the Prana that is linked to the breath is directed inward and this results in a spontaneous state of profound and prolonged absorption. Body and mind reach easily a clear perception of pranic immobility. 184 . the repetition of 12 Kriya Pranayamas is sufficient to get to the state of Pratyahara. there is the discovery that the Kriya routine develops in a simple and natural way. but the practice of Mantra will help you to settle in the intermediate area between the perceptions of the external reality and the allure of enjoying some fantasy. It is explained (an attractive theory indeed. We know that Lahiri said: "In First Kriya you can find everything" but you should not be stubborn. Yes it is Kriya. the repetition of 1728 Kriya Pranayamas (in one session!) is sufficient to get to the state of Dhyana. From that moment onwards repeat your complete Mantra in each Chakra and enjoy the breathless state. 4 We have already explained how to conceive a routine containing the practice of Thokar without creating discomfort. At that moment. however it is worthwhile at least quoting it. it comes to mind an Italian saying: "Se non é vero. é molto ben trovato". It was conceived to establish a particular calmness (tranquility) in the heart region. even-paced breath. consequently. Lahiri Mahasaya explained that when the cardiac plexus is struck by the strong action of Thokar. according to a tradition. The mood is deeply serene. like continuing the act of prayer experienced during the day. At a certain point you will discover that you are not breathing. A particular state happens in which you are on the verge of slipping into a state of sleep.

strong Aswini Mudra -. Repeat the whole Mantra in each Chakra. add during each Kriya Pranayama. Life is momentarily extraneous. It is like sowing with utmost care each of its letters in the sod of each Chakra. But it is correct to consider also other people's experiences. medulla. even at a molecular level. Sweet Absorption. 2. three times). Engraving in each Chakra the Devoted Practice of Prayer. We continue it more and more subtly. 185 . 1.Other Valuable Technical Details My conviction is that this is enough. Facing any possible resistance. You distinctly perceive a fresh energy sustaining your body from inside. Our intention is not to stimulate the Chakras but to surrender to the overpowering process of interiorization. Remember that you should be completely isolated so you cannot be disturbed. Chakra 5. intensify the presence of energy in the heart Chakra by practicing Bhastrika Pranayama. Deepen mental Pranayama in the following way: 1.however when you have it. To some kriyabans. will close by themselves. can provide good cues to increase the intensity of one's Kriya routine. A feeling of comfort and being enveloped in sweet absorption is the first experience. You can remain in each Chakra long enough to mentally repeat the prayer once slowly (it is possible to repeat it two. giving further details to deepen each one of the four phases of Kriya Yoga. you will need not minutes but perhaps hours to restore the peaceful and relaxed mood that was lost. if this wouldn't see anything. a continuous. Letting your breath subside completely. 4. After Thokar. 3. After the first round. If they were kept open . this is only a sensation -. while our consciousness settles in a vast space extending behind and over the Bindu. you feel intuitively the power to do without breath.for instance to avoid drowsiness . practicing Kriya Pranayama with Aswini Mudra is the valuable detail that breaks a stalemate. 2.their breath subsides markedly but the real breathless state always eludes them. The last part of chapter 7.while intensifying the concentration on the point between the eyebrows. while going up and down the spine. You have the perception of having calmed down the inner movements of the body. This is the signal that the heart ganglia which regulate the pulse and the breathing rhythm are appeased. 5 and occipital region. if open or half shut. 3. Your eyes. 4. Regrettably. 2. 3. Certain technical details can be the decisive turning point to those kriyabans whom the previous instructions seem not to work -. Of course. the breathless state is waiting for the appropriate moment to spill an unparalleled experience of divine bliss into your being. Focus on one Chakra at a time. Some deep breaths (3 or 6) are sufficient to regain a good starting calmness. The order is always: Chakra 1. Perfect Immobility of Body and Mind.

One day you will discover that the prayer has entered your heart. your mind manifests a perfect silence and is enraptured by the thrill of an unequaled freedom. 5. physical reality will reveal the indwelling presence of Spirit. our common way of living is suffocation. You peacefully realize that you don't need breathing at all. the more your breath comes to immobility. When you lie on your back after your Kriya routine. It varies from a diffused intensity to the brilliant light of the so-called spiritual eye. The prayer has become the Reality pulsing inside the heart Chakra. Mystics describe its effect as a paradoxical mild pain perfectly melded with a sweet goodness. Samadhi is within your reach. It is an unbelievable state . The cells of your body are internally recharged by a mysterious source that you perceive as cold liquid light. This is a state that renders indifference to death and from which an incommensurable Good is born. Breathlessness. You are projected out of time. every object will appear transfigured. For many weeks (perhaps months) you are so thrilled that you are not able to overstep this lofty stage. The more you are aware of our body in its entirety. Your routine should be intense and. Your body is constituted by an intensity of gilded light. without the least quiver of surprise -. 6. Surely the reaction is: "I won't lose it. and accomplishment. Being Lost in the Meditative State. as it is envisaged in Fourth Kriya. The radiance brought about by prayer becomes the gold of your first experience of the Divine. You can be "lost" in a Chakra for some seconds but you must move up and down the spine. Teresa of Avila) arises: we are permeated by a taste of Eternity. the sound of a far-off bell or of rushing waters will be heard. we sip the celestial honey of a radiation of sweetness which annihilates every desire and fills the soul with ineffable Beauty. This event is enjoyable beyond words: it contains much more than what one could imagine. Prayer of the Heart. The experience of being in contact with an Endless Goodness (I know of no better way to describe it so I have borrowed the expression from S. This condition lasts some minutes. which cannot be compared with any earthly pleasure. The spiritual journey is nearing its end. you are above life.4. solace. The heart thrills in welcoming that state. like a pendulum gently reaching the equilibrium point. Consciousness is transported a far greater distance than any known territory. After this meditation.compared to it. Now the Fourth Kriya technique can be fruitfully practiced and Samadhi attained. You experience that the "wind" of your breath has subsided completely. The experience is the quintessence of love. There is no need to breathe! Enjoy the fresh energy that is sustaining the body from the inside: your lungs do not move. under any circumstances!". it should include an intense concentration on the point between the 186 . shifting your awareness from one Chakra to another. Inner light may appear in the spot between the eyebrows and in the upper part of the brain. Most have the power to "see and touch" each thought and therefore to "halt" it.

stimulating for others) according to which the great Sri Yukteswar would have granted the initiation to this technique to very few disciples. explains everything. It is difficult to obtain the same experience in the standing position. When the Samadhi experience happens. Then practice mental Pranayama until you fall asleep. 187 . All of a sudden will feel a surging wave of fresh energy and be projected into the ecstatic state. as everyone can infer. It is almost impossible to cross the state of sleep -. so many to be counted on the fingers of one hand? Lahiri Mahasaya's instructions require the state of breathlessness and this. This will happen by coupling the daily practice of 12 Fourth Kriya repetitions with a constant effort to keep spiritual aspiration alive and burning.and at the same time maintain a perfect position. you will discover that the meditation position is far from being correct. Now.eyebrows -. When you lay supine. what about the famous affirmation (paralyzing for some kriyabans.better if followed by that on Sahasrara. tense and relax the body different times.very deep sleep -.

outside time. Obviously these four points of view are undoubtedly an approximation of this "frontier" issue... She recharged each syllable of it with her laser-like will and aspiration. A couple of years after his initiation in the Himalayas. a. deposited therein over thousands of years. 5 Since these ideas are not shared by most Kriya authors and since in chapter 7 I did not want to make my reflections too elaborate while I was just giving a brief outline of the four Kriya stages theory. She liked the Mantra: "Om Namo Bhagavateh" which she repeated while walking back and forth in her room. according to her explanation. In her attempt she found an invaluable help in the practice of the Mantra. b.. I decided not to discuss them there. beyond everything. After a long period. I don't know. I introduce this practice starting from: a. The meaning of unfastening the last knot of Muladhara. the breath is wholly internally oriented. has not been thoroughly described in mystical literature. is the base of any disease and apparently any casual incident. A particular affirmation of Lahiri Mahasaya. perfect. outside space. and sensations. The luminous vibration easily made its way through her body until she lighted up a negative layer which.. she was able to cross it and reach an unexplored territory: ". in .. unremittingly concentrated on her body. 188 . d. which although having been broadly explored since time immemorial. 5 According to the person I have before. Many experiences that Mirra Alfassa (The Mother) disciple and spiritual successor of Sri Aurobindo recounted to Satprem bring us back to the themes treated here. c. I discuss what could be considered an interesting way of making the spiritual path complete. This process that I define the "Kriya of the cells". eternal. outside movement . today (the purpose of ) my descent (on earth) has been fulfilled!" What is a "wholly internally oriented" breath? It is surely not what happens to a Kriya novice. The concept of Macro Cosmic Orbit drawn from Taoist Internal Alchemy. A "downward" contraposition to what we have seen till now: the majestic "upward" direction of the traditional mystical path. the origin of every feeling of desperation.. when I assume a person will appreciate a new perspective of considering the basic technique of Kriya Pranayama. b.CHAPTER 12 KRIYA OF DESCENT At anytime during the learning process of Kriya Yoga. Her Agenda is a must read: an amazing "log" of her attempt to descend into her body to contact the "Consciousness of the Cells". crossing various layers of consciousness: thoughts. emotions. Lahiri Mahasaya wrote: "Following an excellent Pranayama. needs great intuition and sensitivity to be developed. Through her indomitable will.

this should be the means we utilize to fill our body with awareness and touch thus the Collective Unconscious. This explains the "borderline" trait and the substantial difficulty in describing any phenomenon emerging from it. the Kriya Pranayama with internal breath that we are going to introduce. When you have crossed the thick wall of the collective opacity. each spiritual researcher and. d. This is not a poetic concept but a real widening of the sphere of our awareness. The idea of personal salvation. each yogi is called to cooperate with the collective evolution. completing the work on Muladhara means directly touching this vast expanse. As for Taoist Internal Alchemy we have observed that the Micro Cosmic Orbit technique resembles the basic form of Kriya Pranayama. where all those around us remain exactly the same. a beatitude. the spiritual experience mixes with all the aspects of an ecstasy. The cells. Our "Kriya of the cells" is in fact a peculiar phenomenon of circulation of energy in the body." implying that the cells had their own consciousness. We should always be open to let the Divine Force descending into our body." That sublime state was the very "consciousness of the body. in particular. The cells have. The contents of the Collective Unconscious have never been in our consciousness. c. or are connected with. Muladhara. During the descending phase. constitutes the last phase of the spiritual path. There is no doubt about the freeing power of the Fourth Kriya technique which develops the inner vision of the Tattwas overcoming thus the illusion of Maya. a particular mind -. we are momentarily dismayed. If in our predilection (or Karma) it is written that we practice Kriya Pranayama. All spiritual paths have an ascending and descending component. according to her. you can 189 . Aware or unaware of what is happening. In this vaster aspect the Muladhara knot embodies not only the illusion that blocks our own vision of Reality but the ignorance in all human minds as well. act as doors: opening on a totally new dimension of the consciousness – the only one free from the labyrinths of the mind. something ineffable. This experience succeeds in breaking the barrier of the mind and touches the psychological dimension which ties all human beings together: the vast ocean of the Collective Unconscious.a universal mind. according to a universal spiritual law. and when an infinitesimal part of them bursts forth in our emancipation also implies dispersing the mental and physic agonies of others. a very attractive theory explains that the Muladhara knot exists not only in the coccyx region but in each cell of our body as well. This surrender is the best thing we can do. Now. If you seek a complete contact with Muladhara. The main lesson we receive from Mère is that. you have no other choice than guiding energy and awareness into your body. The experience she describes is like a breathing of the whole body that bypasses the lungs. It embodies the fourth stage of Taoist internal alchemy. is akin to the experience of the Macro Cosmic Orbit. is indefensible -. Well. We know that unfastening the last knot.

or sitting erect in a train and giving the impression of being absorbed in one's thoughts. or a tree in front of us. Peryt Shou. In my opinion. The essence of these teachings is that any sound vibration. remains unquestionably precious. It is better to avoid any form of Kechari Mudra: sometimes it even seems to hinder our efforts – but after mastering the procedure. a lake. will find paragraphs of inimitable charm. with full concentration on our body (either by concentrating on it as a whole or following an orderly scheme of "conquering" each part of it) is the best tool to approach the experience of the Kriya of the cells and to prevent it from losing its fascination and degenerating into mental speculations. one can make experiments with or without Kechari. These books can be found by rummaging among occult and magic texts.tune in to the divine intelligence enclosed in matter and touch the truer dimension of existence. Any reader who has the patience to research this material and skim through pages and pages of trivial theories and practices whose only goal is to confuse and mislead. We can use our chosen Mantra in a similar way. A suitable Mantra. Spiesberger… are just a few of the authors. the joy becomes so great that it's difficult to hold back tears. beginning with a precise mental effort and going toward effortlessness. These prayers are very short. can reach its cells -. Lasario. or magicians whose aspirations were to develop secret powers. The strangest thing is that. Kolb. Weinfurter. for example: practicing in a waiting room while pretending to read a magazine. we must listen to our subconscious and to the voice of our meditation-born intuition. A not widely known fact is that there are mystics who are able to "think" their prayers in their body. Kerning. Maha Mudra. Even though these mystics were born within Christianity and felt on the average in sync with its doctrines. as always. Then the same process is repeated with another vowel and so on. The main technique is to choose a vowel and begin repeating and vibrating it in one's feet and gradually bringing it up to different parts of the body. reduced sometimes to a single vowel or syllable."the whole body will be re-activated with new life and be reborn". It is essential that our sensibility be in tune with all that is around. On such occasions. Regarding the right attitude. is far more effective than any preparation. the question is whether we can conceive a useful preparation. repeated aloud and then mentally. 190 . if repeated with an unfaltering concentration in the body.. steadfast will of becoming one with a mountain. The first practice to be taken into consideration is Japa in the body. sometimes. and touching its beauty. TECHNIQUE OF THE KRIYA OF THE CELLS Since the exercise is comparatively difficult.. they have been confined to a corner as if they were exponents of esoteric thought. A small collection of written material about this practice has been published almost exclusively by specialized publishers in the esoteric field. the best experiences happen under conditions unfavorable to one's concentration. meditating outdoors with the eyes open and with the adamant.

The Shee sound should be like "the cry that breaks the hardest rock" -. strengthen the intention of finding (or opening) an internal way to reach the cells of your body. directed toward the navel as if it were a magnet and unaware of 191 . Through a short inhalation.sometimes with the chin slightly lowered. during exhalation retain full awareness of your body and perceive not just the downward flow of energy in the spine but its permeation into all parts of the body. focus your attention on the internal gathering of energy and on a peculiar ecstatic sensation that begins to spread into the abdominal and chest region. Maybe that you will find yourself becoming crazy with joy -. It will transform your breath into a pure flow of energy. I.130. Exhaling Shee sound guides energy into the body. Then again a very long exhalation increases the internal pressure all over the skin. expand the abdomen by pushing out the navel which pushes down the diaphragm. the reverse takes place: concentrate intensely on the navel as it moves toward the spine.3) II. During exhalation. during the instants you don't breathe. Not one iota of vitality in the air leaves your nose. Observe how it spreads out to the internal organs and to the skin. deep rhythm of breathing. you begin to increase the intensity of the sound of the exhaling air in the throat. By targeting your will to obtain an unlimited internal pressure of your awareness over the whole body. and then into the head where it blends with a luminous substance. After each inhalation. make a loud sound and visualize a powerful vibration departing from the sexual zone. The experience is similar to a Navi Kriya diffused throughout the body. absorbing the energy there and bringing it into the heart Chakra. within the infinite rock (Rig-Veda. During inhalation. all of the vitality remains in the body. At the beginning of inhalation. it comes spontaneously making exhalation last a lot more than inhalation: the sound of the breath comes out more acute and it seems easier to guide the energy into the cells. Concentration on the navel and lengthening the exhalation. Prana ascends from the navel and accumulates in the brain. The Sheee sound of exhalation helps to inject energy into the cells of your body as if it were a micro hypodermic needle. you will discover and release: the treasure of heaven hidden in the secret cavern like the young of a bird. While maintaining a slow. The inhalation is limited to six seconds but the exhalation can be lengthened indefinitely.thus Sri Aurobindo was referring to the power of Bija Mantra. After about 24 breaths. the "sacred sound of the Rishi".Practical Instructions in Four Steps I. You have already learned doing this during basic Kriya Pranayama. Then.

The process of Kriya Pranayama is leading us toward something stunningly new: a rotation of energy independent from the act of breathing. You can "cheat" a little – but only if necessary and provided it is done with a good measure of delicacy. when necessary. "To cheat" means to interrupt the exhalation. (Sri Aurobindo. and inhale briefly and then take back the exhalation and the downward movement of the energy. It's as if an impressionist painter had finally succeeded in actualizing their visionary conception conveying the idea that the painted inert substance of matter is composed of multicolored particles of light. especially when each fragment tends to become microscopic. A God's labor. An entire life is not enough to explore the wonders contained in this Kriya of the cells.even if this cannot be affirmed with scientific certainty. The sensation is reminiscent of a brisk walk in the wind.) 192 . this experience is enriched by hearing a loud and continuous Om. This comforting sound is the confirmation that you are heading in the right direction. The exhalation seems to become endless and the fragments of breath seem to have practically dissolved! There is also a faint but clear component of rising energy in the spine. To be able to do this without disturbing the delicacy of the phenomenon is an art. This tranquil way of changing the way of breathing makes us feel the beauty of living in a surprisingly new way. IV. without ever exhausting its marvel. Your feel you could lengthen this process longer sitting upright. The pleasurable sensation becomes orgasmic and only a faint signal of the need of oxygen appeases its progressive growth. Heaven's fire is lit in the breast of the earth and the undying suns here burn. There is an inner source of fresh energy making you lighter and filling you with strength. You have crossed a barrier and reached a seemingly breathless state where there is no air coming out your nose -. Internal breathing. It is as if we had vainly hoped for years on end that the Divine would be part of our daily life and suddenly we discover that the Divine has always been there. It is in itself pleasurable. Now only a frail shell separates you from the coveted state where all effort ceases: it is possible to cross it by means of a subtly fragmented exhalation. Fragmented exhalation. III. This can not merely be called a joyous state: it is a feeling of infinite safety surrounded by a crystalline state of an immobile mind. like innumerable suns radiating in a brilliant transparency. Usually.

Personal Remarks My first attempts at this "Kriya of descent" began in a period during which I lived from the beauty oozing from Mother's Agenda. My experience was more or less the one afore described: it was like merging the totality of my being in the power of Kriya Pranayama. Trying to find a way to ameliorate that experience, I discovered the role of practicing in impossible places where the whole attention is naturally turned outside and one must work hard to bring it inside. The state of meditation after Kriya Pranayama was lengthened and lived as it were the search of a perfect Beauty unattainable through physical human means and abilities. The naïve conception of devotion as a hectic emotion arising either from devotional bhajan, from certain pictures, from the scent of certain incenses... was left behind forever. No benefit was received from Kechari Mudra: I felt an inexplicable repulsion to using it. Nature was to me the source of inspiration from which I didn't want to abandon. Kechari Mudra detached my attention from the external world, and from the physical body, too heavily. The practice absorbed me in a blue-colored profundity where I felt the brightness of the skies of my infancy. All the problems connected with my emotions, as well as negative moods tied with intricate and thwarted plans for the future, seemed a nightmare which had dissolved forever, an illusion out of which I had emerged definitively. My life which, up until that point, had been full of asperities, seemed to stretch out evenly toward the future. The beauty of living, like wine from a full cup, seemed to overflow from every atom and fill my heart; I rejoiced in feeling an unfathomable clarity of mind. Then in the following days I experienced something strange: I felt as "not having a skin anymore". I had the impression of having touched and disturbed the surrounding environment; I felt I could perceive - not only through my awareness but, in a strange way, also through my body - what was passing in another person's consciousness (not each thought of course, but just one's mood) and, strange to say, to mistake it for my own. Let me quote a recurrent example. 6 It happens that all of a sudden, a deep depression takes hold of my mood (I was never subject to depression), lasts several hours and then disappears; it is not a simple dissonance, a disharmony, but an agonizing pain in a moment in which there is no justification for it. Unfailingly I realize that a significant circumstance has happened: I have been introduced to a new acquaintance, we had shaken hands and talked with a sincere involvement. It is well known how good our mind is when it comes to clutching at straws; but when a similar episode is observed with due detachment and, as the days and the months go by, it repeats with mathematical precision, then the

Before writing this, I have hesitated a lot. The reader may be disappointed by it because it may evoke the New Age manias. It is only after listening to similar effects by other researchers and on account of my commitment to total sincerity, that I have made up my mind to write about it. 193

evidence of a phenomenon of tuning into another person's consciousness, cannot be denied. What one is and what others are, mixes. Now, to affirm that Kriya Pranayama leads us to perceive reality in a different way is obvious, but to assume that it makes things happen that would not otherwise happen (or that would have happened anyway, but in a different way) is quite another thing. This hypothesis has all the appearance of a figment of our imagination. The principle of cause-effect implies that the world ignores what happens inside your consciousness while you sit immobile in your secluded retreat. How is it possible to conceive that what happens within you can have an effect on the surrounding world? Even after months, you cannot know whether this is simply an impression or real. The image of an anthill that's been disturbed comes to mind: scores of ants immediately appear to begin repairing it. Similarly your environment appears to you as more agitated, at times frenetically active and partly aggressive toward you. It is as if everything (especially in the field of human relationships) is conspiring to reveal "your sins." Surprised, you observe that many long lost acquaintances appear and call on you with demanding challenges that require radical changes of attitude on your part. You feel the unavoidable duty of facing intricate, unsolved issues that in the past you smartly succeeded in avoiding. Being utterly sincere with yourself is unavoidable. How many times I wondered: how is it possible that, through guiding breath and awareness into the cells of our body, we obtain such an important result, which has so tangible effects on the material, emotive and psychological planes? I believe that Jung's discoveries are precious for the understanding of the mystic path - perhaps more than many other concepts formulated during the 20th century. Jung discovered that human psyche is made up of layers or strata, part of it shared by humanity and called Collective Unconscious. Even though his statements never lacked the necessary prudence, the scientific community never forgave him for dealing with matters that were not considered a part of Psychiatry - such as Alchemy (deemed an absurdity), the realm of myths (considered the result of a senseless imagination) and, more than any other thing, the great value he attributed to the religious dimension; which he considered something universal and fundamentally sane, instead of a pathology. Nowadays, the enthusiasm for his writings remains, especially among those who study topics of a spiritual and esoteric nature. Jung introduced a terminology which permits one to probe an aspect of the mystical path which would otherwise risk being totally extraneous, not only to our capability of expression but also to our comprehension. Since we have hinted at particular facts that in their manifestation seem to ignore the principle of cause-effect, it is important to remember that Jung put a rational basis for the study of this subject in his Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle. The more we consider how intelligent, fascinating and stimulating his thought; the emptier the nonsense appear to us when they deal with the Siddhis in the many books on Yoga. In the esoteric literature there is the vast chapter of miracles and Siddhis

(powers), namely the subtle laws that work in the life of a mystic. Those who write books on Yoga are not able to resist the temptation of copying some lines from Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. It's typical to find the ridiculous warning of the danger coming from the abuse of the Siddhis. Quoting Patanjali (IV:1), they recount that Siddhis are the spiritual powers (psychic abilities) that may occur through rigorous austerities; they explain that they vary from relatively simple forms of clairvoyance, telepathy, to being able to levitate, to be present at various places at once, to become as small as an atom, to materialize objects and more. They recommend to their readers not to ever indulge in these powers since "they are a great hindrance to spiritual progress". Indulge: what a beautiful word! If you did see someone practicing Pranayama and indulging in a little bilocation for fun, would you tell?! Perhaps they don't think enough about what they are writing because they let themselves be seduced by the dream of possessing those powers .... perhaps they already visualize all the fuss which will come out: interviews, taking part in talk shows etc. The Final Phase of the Spiritual Path If we just try to forget the world in order to focus on our own conception of the Ultimate Reality because we want to live peacefully attuned to the higher Chakras and occult centers of our brain, something will force our attention toward the body. If we don't consider the commitment of filling our body with awareness and energy as an integral part of the Kriya path, we are bound to receive various sharp tugs downward -- including mental and physical disorders.

Fortunately, the necessity of entering this downward phase, happens only after going a long way and when we have sincerely surrendered our ego to the spiritual dimension. Pure love for humanity is born. Joining your consciousness with someone else's means involving yourself with their problems. A lasting transformation in another's consciousness happens only when the opacity in them is purged bit by bit. This cannot be obtained by any other way other than sharing part of their suffering, a feat which implies a momentary loss of your spiritual realization. Magic rituals, New Age remedies, and esoteric way-outs are poignantly vain. Like other mystics, Lahiri Mahasaya went out of the shell of his individual consciousness and put his being into that of his disciples and also into that of many other people whom he never physically met. Lahiri Baba is a mirror for all kriyabans. We can send good vibrations to the world if we want -- and surely this is a positive action -- but the real work happens in our body. In order to cooperate with the collective evolution we must descend in the matter, using Kriya Pranayama to guide the energy down in the organs of the body, in its cells.
We have experienced many times in our life how a malady is a signal sent by the body to implore our attention and to oblige us to initiate the necessary treatments, to awake its self healing powers, which have always been there but needed the active share of our mindful awareness in order to work.


Our goal is not only to fly out of the body toward the rarefied dimensions of the Spirit, but to infuse the Divine into our body, and then if possible, into our surrounding environment. The Kriya of the cells with its sweet pressure on the body, has effects that we cannot even imagine. Day after day, with an indomitable serenity, patches of darkness are dispelled and light emerges. It is true that we are going to contact somehow the quagmires of the Collective Unconscious and we cannot predict your endurance but the intrinsic balance of the Kriya path (its unique process of opening the knots from top to bottom) shall spare us from all dangers and psychological suffering. All the work we have previously done to open the knot of the heart has made us strong as steel. This is how we can interpret the meaning of the sentence attributed to the mythical Babaji (quoting Bhagavad Gita): "Even a little bit of the practice of this (inward) religion will save you from dire fears and colossal sufferings." We have heard about "burning another person's Karma in one's own body" many times, and we have understood that this is what saints do. Many times they face excruciating physical and psychological suffering. Perhaps they don't understand what is happening. St. John of the Cross maintains that mystics almost invariably confront a critical period which he calls the "dark night of the soul." They feel as though God has suddenly abandoned them and doubt the validity of their spiritual path. In a lengthy and profound absence of light and hope, even if they have the drive to go ahead with outward expressions of faith, they may doubt the existence of God. How is it possible? Unfortunately their beliefs might be an obstacle to true understanding. Often they are lead to consider every physical illness as the expiation of the remnant debt of their own past sins and the psychological agony of "night of the soul" as a hard test imposed by the will of God. Religious dogmas make it all the more difficult. Yet little reflection would be enough for understanding the recondite beauty of what is happening. In order to "love thy neighbor as thyself", mystic must go out of themselves and mix their consciousness with that of other persons. Doubts that appear in their consciousness (caused by contamination with another person's state of mind) are not the emergence of their unworthiness. If they don't understand this, the consequence is total desperation, irremediable feelings of impurity, and a complete failure for eternity. Although their consciousness should be filled with the joy of the Spirit, they persist in believing they are sinners and their psychological suffering increases. Had they brought awareness and divine light into their body, the process would develop more positively. But few have learned the great secret of infusing their body with awareness by literally thinking the prayer in their body. The nobility of this practice is not grasped even if they read about it somewhere. Had they understood and done this at the beginning of their path, how many things would have changed! In my opinion, bringing energy and awareness into our body decreases the time a karmic disease can affect our body. While physical suffering is made less

Therefore.Canto IV) 197 . those Acharyas would attract so much excess negative karma that they would experience tremendous suffering as a result. where "the breath is wholly internally oriented" is really the last step. Some authors and Kriya schools claim that Babaji will introduce us to these levels in the astral worlds. sure. they are fully human. and this too was a dream. Then our Yoga could resemble a chronic state of drowsiness. A researcher is rarely accepted as a disciple unless there is an unavoidable strong and tranquil inner confirmation. Touching the "mind of the cells" is the ultimate achievement. reaching an excellent Kriya Pranayama. Book X . Useless to say that what we have just described cannot happen in seminars that attract hundreds of new disciples or when Kriya Acharyas automatically grant initiation to thousands of people. psychological suffering is dismantled by a quiet internal dignity which refuses to yield to desperation. Or in bodies motionless like statues. fixed In tranced cessations of their sleepless thought Sat sleeping souls. That seems to me a parody of the esoteric and theosophic thought. (The same theory implies that only one quarter of the remaining karma is burned by the disciple's own efforts because God supposedly burns the other half) True teachers never promote themselves. We have neither the wisdom of Lahiri Mahasaya nor the inner "Sun" of "Mother" but we can at least patiently turn our heart toward this new dimension: the Divine immanent in matter and "the abysses of truth and the oceans of smiles that lie beyond the narrow peaks of truth" (Sri Aurobindo. instead they hesitate a long time before accepting a new student. choked by an addiction to the basic well consolidated routine. but if we exclude any difficult achievement from our dreams and goals. They are well aware of the responsibility and problems such relationships entail. (Sri Aurobindo. risks making your heart hard and resistant and freezing its natural aspiration. If the theory is true that a Guru assumes one quarter of a disciple's karma. Savitri.) Perhaps we are not ready for it. Mystics are not demigods. with the same instincts and sensitivities as anyone else. their first instinctive reaction will be to avoid suffering and all that detracts them from ecstatic absorption.painful by contacting the "mind of the cells". The obsession of conceiving Kriya only as a means of obtaining the ecstatic trance. Conclusion Some students are lost in conjectures on improbable levels of Kriya beyond the Fourth. our spiritual venture risks falling apart. almost no one gets the opportunity to talk and introduce themselves to the teacher. Seeking heaven's rest or the spirit's worldless peace. When Initiation is given to all who apply for it. In my judgment.

198 . The purpose of the following text is to bring to light something precise and useful to the students who. The crisis was at times acute. I avoid the annoying "he/she". 8 After my book appeared on the Web. K3 and K4 to denote the Kriyas as they are described in the written teachings of PY. and for me. being faithful to the teachings of PY. we queried whether it was fair or necessary to embark on a search in order to clarify our doubts and receive an exhaustive key to improve our practice of PY's Kriya techniques. replying to our letters. K2. Thus. remember that I am not talking about the technique of Fourth Kriya as it is described in this book (chapter 8). By referring to this student in this appendix. It is obvious that you can't find here a description of K1. we didn't dismiss it but continued to entertain many doubts. the crisis with our organization began when we tackled the study of the Higher Kriyas. The arguments are many. A 8 At different moments of our lives we studied the same written material. ] For many of my kriyaban friends. There is no doubt that among these. I've done this search and the information received is summarized here. I had an intense email exchange with various researchers.I won't allow myself to do such a thing. but not fully satisfied. those who had attentively studied the writings of PY proved to be the most "serious" people. if not contradictory. at times moderated by the thought that the guilt was ours.APPENDIX 1 REMARKS UPON KRIYA AS TAUGHT BY THE ORGANIZATIONS ■ Kechari Mudra and Kriya Pranayama routine ■ Information about K3 and K4 ■ Information about K2 ■ A remark about the breathless state before discussing K2 ■ Some remarks on the preliminary techniques ■ Hong So ■ Om technique This appendix is not a sort of "open letter" addressed to those who are part of one of those organizations that spread the teachings of PY -. K2. I will deal with them in the same order of priority that emerged in a series of talks with one brother student whom I met after an exchange of emails. when you read "K4". Our organization (other schools understood very soon that it didn't pay to behave in such a way) never gave a seminar on those techniques. The subject matter of this appendix is understandable only by those students who are conversant with those techniques. We were happy of having found this great path of Kriya Yoga. Unfortunately. Unsatisfied about our practice. this organization remained somewhat vague. given that their organization has declined to clarify them. [I will use the symbols K1. are trying to find in this book a key to clarify their technical doubts. K3 and K4.

The mistake is to concentrate only on what happens to the tip of the tongue. was dissolving. 9 To those who want to achieve this practice.our routine according to the various stages of our development. He had planned to reappraise them in the future since he intended now to improve only what he had received from the organization. Apart from the technique of Kechari Mudra. the tongue is perfectly horizontal. While I was giving him some explanations. the tip of the tongue has no role: the sucker effect is obtained with the whole body of the tongue! 9 Sometimes the discussion focuses on the detail of chanting Om in the Chakras and on the first version of PY's Kriya written instructions where the higher part of the head was crossed by the exhalation current.and subsequently modify -. the gold that once lighted my life when. we missed having a sound theoretical scheme that provided us with resources to conceive -. for prudential reasons. few minutes before he summarized the ups and downs of his Kriya path. Many are not doing it correctly. from which he had learned various aspects of the original Kriya. It was necessary for me to meet such an ardent devotee to find again. He was convinced. it is necessary to check their Talabya Kriya. It has been observed that practicing this detail since the first Kriya breaths can make you moody. through a naked and raw definition. reflected in his eyes. Furthermore. 199 . Always remember that. many years ago. the awareness should be shifted from the point between the eyebrows to fontanelle only after 40-50 Kriya breaths. Kechari Mudra and Kriya Pranayama Routine The first point of discussion with any Kriya student is always the "original" technique of Kriya Pranayama with Kechari Mudra. without mentioning all their possible developments. In a correct Talabya Kriya. I skimmed through the pages of the same book. We agreed that the only problem was that those teachings were described only in their basic form."serious" kriyaban is in my opinion one who doesn't mix Kriya Yoga with New Age suggestions or with the madness of esoteric-magic thought and who has not gotten stuck on any religious dogma. because they have not understood what it means to make their tongue adhere to the palate like a sucker before opening the mouth and stretching the frenulum. that each part of them was precious. I had the impression that his heart was overcome with the same emotion he experienced while reading for the first time the AOY. and my fully approval put his mind at ease. He struck me for his extraordinary commitment to Kriya. He had read and studied my book. mixed with curiosity and trust. which I had perceived in his mind when. I felt that the bitterness. he didn't feel the necessity of adding any other technique to his practice. that the techniques of PY were indeed good. The friend to whom I refer in this appendix was following the Kriya path for one reason only: to surpass the boundaries of his mind in order to merge with the Ineffable. The safest practice is the current one.

For a student who has learned Kriya through the organization. This simple practice has the power to open the door of the Sushumna. Naturally. by the way. who feel that they are far from perceiving the movement of Prana along the spine. are meaningless. On one hand. adding to the forward bendings of Maha Mudra some form of lateral bending and torsion. Usually the kriyabans I have met. Both forms of Kriya Pranayama are good in preparation for this event. Prana flows into Sushumna". I am not saying that Kechari is not important. The polemic: If mouth-Pranayama is superior to nose-Pranayama because. I cannot conceive that the achievement of Kechari was intended to create a sharp division among people. His attitude. his partaking of human suffering leads me to believe this. Kriya Pranayama as taught by PY has a remarkable power of granting a clear cold-warm sensation of Prana moving along the spinal column -.Kechari Mudra is important but not indispensable -.there is no reason to leave it aside.. To those who are not satisfied with their execution of Kriya Pranayama. the best way of improving Kriya Pranayama is to grant himself the pleasure of practicing it both through the mouth and through the nose. can practice in this way. as some suggest. comes down into body and spine. deceived into believing they are more evolved than others. at the same time.this is my opinion. are broadly utilized in the PY's Recharging Exercises. at the very beginning of their routine. I think that the value of the preliminary exercise of drawing air in and out 200 . It goes without saying that moderate exercises for the spine. we have the very proud kriyabans. Many kriyabans have made this exercise become integral part of their daily routine. they cannot respect verbatim the instructions received from the organization and. keep your tongue in that position. Many Hatha Yoga Asanas embody these movements which. Only the breathless state succeeds in bringing energy and awareness into the subtle channel of Sushumna. we have those who are hopelessly depressed for failing in something that does not depend on effort but only on physical constitution. The tongue is behind the uvula and is blocking the flow of air through the mouth. happens also when the tongue tip is simply turned back to touch the middle of the upper palate at the point where the hard palate become soft: the current passes through the tongue. I simply choose to believe that Lahiri Mahasaya also gave Higher Initiation to those who could not assume the correct tongue position for Kechari Mudra. practiced mouth-Kriya-Pranayama followed by nose-Kriya-Pranayama. "through it." (Chapter 7) Anyone can do this. When the tip of the tongue touches the upper palate (or the uvula or the roof of the nasal pharynx) you cannot breathe through your mouth.. represent the best thing you can do. the Nadi Sodhana Pranayama. on the other hand. PY's decision not to deny initiation into the Higher Kriyas to those who were unable to practice Kechari Mudra wins my total approval. I counsel to add. Those who are not able to achieve Kechari Mudra proper. What good does it do to split kriyabans in this way? I have already written that: "piercing the knot of the tongue .

The oceanic Om sound will be audible and the joy experienced will be overwhelming. I counsel. we chant Om in each Chakra.through the tube created by the loosely clenched fists before beginning Kriya proper should not be slurred over. 201 . 11 Some kriyabans practice with visibly open mouth (as some direct disciples of PY teach). I recommend to avoid the mental chanting of Om in the Chakras. to chant Om in the first five Chakras and in medulla. without modifying the cycle he has learned during initiation. During the second part of nose-Pranayama. I don't think that this exercise is conceived as a didactic tool to be utilized only during Kriya problem if a student can only turn the tip of his tongue upward to touch the roof of the mouth (soft palate). One should remain attuned to the same sounds which occur when the technique is practiced with mouth open. the practice of fourteen consecutive Kriya breaths grants a keen sensation of presence in the spine. one day it will be flute-like." This is a common way of practicing Sitali Pranayama. I counsel then to practice the three phases of Kriya Pranayama as explained in chapters 6 and 7. After it. The energy in Muladhara will awaken and rise like a missile through Sushumna into the brain. we can close the mouth putting the tongue in Kechari Mudra -. It is only at this point. encapsulated in it. It is a smart variation of Sitali Pranayama.a cooling sensation is felt over the tongue and into the throat. like the hollow tube we visualize during Kriya Pranayama. others with half open mouth with the central part of the lips touching (as other direct disciples have taught). especially when the student begins to listen to the internal astral sounds. during inhalation. accomplishing the formula 14+12+12+12. An optimum situation is to practice at least 12 repetitions of each phase. but this exercise is extraordinarily effective. 10 I counsel to add it. 11 After these breaths. not before. Inhale deeply and smoothly through the tongue and mouth -. then chant Om again in medulla and in the Chakras in reverse order during exhalation. Exhale through the nose ideally directing the fresh breath in all the parts of your body. without closing his ears. feeling a power that rises millimeter after millimeter (and likewise descends during fragmented exhalation) is a very effective action. I don't know if it is also because the pulsing movements of the navel stimulate the Dantian region. Since I have recommended not to modify the path of the current learned during initiation. During the first part of nose-Pranayama. This will be a great event: the hidden power. Dividing the breath in small fragments while you are intensely concentrating on the spine. and also to practice it with a fragmented breath. Each one of the three parts of Kriya Pranayama has a precise role: this first part is devoted to come near to the most perfect throat-and-nasal-pharynx sound. will lead one the peak experience of the Kriya path. that the student places all his being in 10 "Curl comfortably your tongue and protrude it slightly past the lips to form a tube. This part of the practice is very nice. But this happens only when the spine is clean. then pause in the point between the eyebrows. Even if the sound of the breath is not loud and clear.

This teaching is described without ambiguity in the written teaching of PY (K3 and K4) but we miss seeing it well-adjusted within a complete routine. while discomfort increased and a feeling of nausea went on launching its alarm signals."if it leads to the Samadhi state. Meditation does not mean remaining immobile waiting while the strong energetic charge of the spine dispels -. Information about K3 and K4 During a second meeting with the same dedicated student of Kriya Yoga. as if he was looking at the ceiling. If Kriya Pranayama has granted the blissful experience of listening to internal sounds then meditation means to go on listening to these sounds for some one who is waiting the effect of an intramuscular injection. we stopped . with closed ears. K3 without head movements -. the theme was the teaching that in original Kriya is called Thokar. Since this seldom happens.. Still. After about 15 20 rotations Kumbhaka became stressful. Fixed in this position. We had the same experiences. moving the awareness up and down the spine. soon to be discarded. But the results were considerably unsatisfactory. the most delicate part of the routine begins: the meditative phase. a. why not try it now"? At the end of a short routine.optionally proceeded by Maha Mudra. I do not pretend to assert an absolute truth -. 202 . we didn't forget the beautiful promises with which the explanation of K4 had been introduced and we utilized this technique on other occasions. Eventually. he practices like in the second part (mental chanting of Om. but the initial internalized state created by the previous techniques was destroyed. without raising the chin. It was clarified (this is the result of my search. we were not able to resist the temptation of trying K4 on the spot -. Our talk departed from this point and developed freely. hurried by the frenzy of experiencing this "supreme" technique. Actually. we repeated the same attempt many times. if possible. simplification of it (K3).fontanelle. Kriya meditation means carrying on an active concentration on the Chakras.this applies obviously for all the follows) that receiving K3 and K4 does not mean receiving one main teaching (K4) accompanied by a temporary.) After Kriya Pranayama.. we tried to practice K4.this procedure is called Omkar Kriya. pausing in each Chakra for 10-20 seconds. Instead of giving up.defeated: the gain was null. When we received K3 and K4. the teachings are three and many Kriya schools give them during three different initiations. With his eyelids closed or half-closed. he turns his eyes upward as much as possible. first with open ears and then. less than null! Not only there was no trace of Samadhi. It fits into Kriya's theoretical scheme to practice Jyoti Mudra at the end of the routine -.

blissful experiences begin to happen in the spine and the person enjoys it in a state in which the body is half-awake but the awareness is lucid as ever. The gist of the practice lies in the constant effort of raising one's awareness along the spinal column millimeter after millimeter with a continuous mental pressure. Each technique has to be mastered with great commitment before moving to the following one. and the inhaling and exhaling sound remain continuous. Those who embark on this venture. such experiences begin to happen during deep sessions of one's daily Kriya routine. However. The result is this: during sleep. then into the cervical Chakra. creating a micro pause in each Chakra. mindful physical effort is simultaneously aimed at striking the chest. I explain that it is like squeezing with the thumb an almost empty tube of toothpaste (from its base up to its opening) to get the last little bit out. • The technique of Omkar Kriya (K3 without the movements of the head) is obtained by applying all the details of the received technique (mental pressure at the base of the spinal column. One should not allow the weight of one's head to push the chin toward the chest: in this condition. should perform this movement in a very delicate way. Kechari Mudra is extraordinary in creating the necessary "mental pressure". This great work would be disturbed by the movements of the head of K3 proper. Some define this last movement of the head a "blow" or a "stroke". intensification of the awareness in the point between the eyebrows) but remaining immobile during all the exhalation which begins immediately after the concentration at the point between the eyebrows. after months or years of effort. while resisting the force of gravity. Hence. This is exactly what happens in Kriya Pranayama.b. K4 -. the heart Chakra and then down into all the other Chakras.this procedure is called basic form of Thokar c.this procedure is called advanced form of Thokar. the flow of the breath does not lose its quality of smoothness. The difference is that the kriyaban uses all the power of concentration (and also of Kechari Mudra if he is capable of assuming it) to subtly vibrate each syllable with intensity. the physical movement is definitely too powerful and harmful for the neck. One must have trained the power of his concentration to the point of being able to maintain this sensation with uninterrupted continuity. Perhaps it is much more correct to define it a "tap". Subsequently. inhalation placing the syllables where prescribed. It must be lived in immobility. With this practice in immobility "a kriyaban learns the art of astral diving through the spinal tunnel". • The nucleus of the basic form of Thokar (K3 technique with head movements) is the action of dropping the head forward so that the chin strikes the chest. The exhalation is more tranquil: the energy glides downwards and the previous pressure is perceived effortlessly at each Chakra's location as a cascade of light coming from above. "Jolt" means that the 203 . or a "slight jolt". K3 with head movements -. The long exhalation guides the current into medulla oblongata.

. What is important is that its effect is intensely felt within the fourth Chakra. it is possible . and Su happen without altering that rhythm. Ya.. Since there are only three syllables De. all the 12 syllables are chanted with the same rhythm.. The Right Preparation for K4 The decisive procedure -... but it is also something more.when the person has completed the right preparation. during the main routine.. This is to be done once a day. The first incremental routine concerns Omkar Kriya (K3 without the movements of the head). it is quite natural to chant them in a slower rhythm. (After this practice. The second incremental routine concerns the basic form of Thokar (K3 technique with head movements). Instead of adding one repetition a day. • The technique of the advanced form of Thokar (K4 technique) is undoubtedly a variation of K3. Some practice Te. b. does not remain glued there. Va.endowed with a shattering psychological cleaning power -. Va.) If you have a secondary session. The concentration on the spiritual light in the head is a key point. there is plenty of time for concentrating deeper on each blow and perceive something emanating from each point. Completing this incremental routine is a challenging. Now. Ya that accompany the exhalation. and so on until you practice 200 repetitions a day for two weeks. When the previous incremental routine is 204 . seems a mere illusion. but not particularly difficult. undertaking: time goes by without much notice and what could seem to be an exhausting task (doing more than 100 repetitions) turns out to be as easy as a moment of rest.125. Va. The difficulty in practicing this technique lies in being too much in a hurry and trying to hold the breath without having first calmed the Prana in the body and raised the energy (Apana) residing under the belt into the higher part of the thorax. To increase the number of rotations of the head up to 200. touches the chest for an instant and comes up immediately. In this way. Then practice 50 repetitions a day for another two to complete two incremental routines concerning the two aspects of the K3 technique. Te. Usually. On the contrary.] a. this is considered the normal speed of K3. Va. without breathing.chin comes down. Su in a slower way. [See chapter 10 for definition of incremental routine.. Let me give a clarification about the speed. Then practice 75 repetitions a day for another two weeks . . So if the three movements linked with Te. you can adopt a simpler plan: practice 25 repetitions a day for two weeks.. Va. Su can be chanted with the same rhythm of De. the same technique can be resumed for 12-36 times. forget the breath and remain immobile practicing the best form of mental Pranayama.then 100. Tradition envisages beginning with 12 repetitions and adding one repetition a day until you reach 200 repetitions.

I know that it can really help those who are stuck in an unsatisfactory practice of K4. keeping his chest expanded and the abdominal muscles and diaphragm perfectly immobile. he allows that a minimal (almost imperceptible) sip of air can go out whenever his chin is lowered toward the chest. Let us suppose that while holding the breath in a non-forced way.therefore he still does not set the objective of achieving the 200 rotations. He has the sensation that the breath is annihilated. something beautiful is approaching. he increases of six rotations a week. He increases until this is comfortable -. he does not feel pain in the cervical vertebrae or in the neck muscles. For one week he does not try to increase beyond this new "record" of N+6. and an imperceptible sip of air can enter whenever the chin is brought up. At the completion of both procedures (a year or more is required) the student is able to direct a tremendous amount of energy into the heart Chakra and is ready to reach high levels of perfection with K4. But. the student starts again from the beginning and should practice K3 proper (with movements) increasing the number of repetitions. The ability gained through the previous procedure assures that during each movement of the head he does not lose the perception of the current reaching and piercing each Chakra (medulla. The plan of incrementation is the same of the previous routine.completed. This one cannot be called a commonly accepted method. K4: the Great Procedure of Astral Samadhi An easy way of tackling the K4 technique is here described. his role is limited to letting the afore-described phenomenon happen freely. the student is able to practice the movements of K4 for a certain amount N of times before exhaling. he exhales comfortably and does not repeat the procedure till the next day. not impeded. he perceives an increase of Prana in the upper part of the lungs. He repeats N+6 cycles of the movements of the head with no hurry whatsoever. cervical and heart Chakra). One 205 . Let us be clear: he does not make the act of inhaling and exhaling. What is important is that he does not lose the sensation that the physical breath does not exist any more and all Prana is immobile and goes on remaining immobile in the upper part of the lungs. he can wisely practice on alternative when one is diving into water) but keeps them as if he is going to begin a new inhalation. Through this way of proceeding. let us openly say that it will find many detractors. This is a crucial detail whose importance cannot be over emphasized. he can try to practice N+6 rotations abiding by the following principle: he inhales slowly following the instructions about placing correctly the syllables in the Chakras. He does not make the act of sealing his lungs (closing the trachea -. When N+6 movements are completed. If everything goes in the best of the ways. If the day after this practice. If there are problems with the cervical vertebrae. rather.

" I have known students who felt deceived just for this reason and had dropped it after many years of concentrating instead on K3 and K4. two techniques are described which are extremely important. You focus mind and Prana on each one of them until their essence is revealed as a variation of astral sound and as a particular state of consciousness.. fire. it is quite different from the Second Kriya as taught by various schools. The information I have received is that this is obtained by a particular way of mentally placing the syllables of a Mantra at each Chakra's location.the joy which is expanding in his heart becomes his "Guru" and guides him. This has a soothing effect on the ganglia tied with the breathing process. Such procedure leads one to perceive the colors of the Tattwas namely of the five elements (earth. At this point he is able to reach the 200 rotations -.. An increase of energy in the fourth Chakra is strikingly perceived.. without a specific name. . Actually. cervical and heart Chakras). 1. they are not necessary. He realizes he is rotating his head while keeping a perfect effortless Kumbhaka. the other is a delicate technique to perceive the astral spine. PY explained in a very clear way the physical changes that happen when your conscience attunes to the different Tattwas: the way your breath flows through the nostrils and the perception of different flavors in your mouth. Thokar (K3 and K4) affects the higher Chakras (medulla.. which on various forums are indicated as the real. Indeed. eyes. Technique of the Micro Thokar to Awaken the Chakras The procedure of "Micro Thokar" is hinted in a not-easy-to-understand sentence about the "psycho-physical blows given at the different locations of the Chakras". It is based on a procedure which is not restricted to "physically locating the centers". Second Kriya. the writings of PY related to the Second Kriya are very odd: the technique K2 is an advanced and extremely difficult teaching that is somehow related with the Fourth Kriya level. ether) each one tied with a different he realizes that during his practice the previously hinted little sips of breath do not happen any more. air. close ears. A wonderful sensation of freedom from breath happens. The noteworthy fact is that there is not only this technique in the group of the writings related to K2! After a few pages. meditate on the six Chakras one by one. One is the practice of the "Micro Thokar". The procedure for extending Thokar to all the Chakras is called "Micro Thokar" because it is characterized by a drastic diminution of the dynamic of the 206 . Unfortunately no further practical explanation is given. water.. I believe that a similar technique is hinted in Gheranda Samhita: ". Information about K2 Many are convinced that K2 as taught by PY be incorrectly named "Second Kriya". The story that PY received this instruction from Swami Kebalananda is plausible. in other words "original".

movements of the head and by a shrinking of the dimensions of the internal movement of energy and awareness. In chapter 8 I have given one version of this beautiful procedure. Another version is given here. • The breath is forgotten. Let us mentally repeat in each Chakra the Mantra: Om Na Mo Bha Ga Ba Te Va Su De Va Ya. Let explain how, through the help of this Mantra, we give four psycho-physical blows to each Chakra. We divide the Mantra in four parts: Om Na Mò // Bha Ga Bà // Te Va Sù // De Va Yà. Four taps (soft blows) happen when we think the accented syllables Mò, Bà, Sù and Yà. We start by placing our awareness in Muladhara Chakra. We look "down" at it as if it were a horizontal disk like a coin, we mentally chant "Om" at the left of its center, "Na" at the right and "Mò", with a soft tap, in the center of it. The oscillation perceived during this internal action is a matter of millimeters. A light oscillatory movement of the spine can accompany and strengthen the internal movement. Always remaining in Muladhara, we repeat the same procedure with Bha Ga Bà, thus giving a second psycho-physical blow at Muladhara. Then we vibrate Te Va Sù and eventually De Va Yà. We repeat the same procedure with all the other Chakras. The order is the same that PY utilizes: first, second, third, fourth, fifth Chakra, then medulla, point between the eyebrows, medulla, fifth, fourth, third, second and first Chakra. Then we repeat the whole round trying to be more internalized. This time we try to keep the spine immobile. The ideal would be to be able to complete from three to six rounds. 2. Technique to Perceive the Astral Spine The technique to perceive the astral spine is explained after PY has expatiated on Kundalini and given a clear hint at the necessity of Kechari Mudra. At a certain point, PY explains how, once stable in the meditation Asana, a kriyaban gently sways the spine, left and right in order to feel the astral spine as separated from the body. The core of the teaching is then experienced in immobility by traveling up and down the spine, mentally chanting Om in the location of the Chakras. 12 It is a very simple teaching and yet it is great! The result can leave you astonished! I don't comment it further, since the PY's few lines about it are exhaustive. The practice of techniques [I] and [II] is the best thing to prepare your body for the K2 technique. A Remark about the Breathless State before Discussing K2 K2 is an advanced technique whose mastery can be achieved only after the mastery of the breathless state. Many kriyabans are not able to conceive of this state to the point that it doesn't occur to them. When I discuss with a kriyaban

There is a direct disciple of PY who teaches Second Kriya exactly in this way. You mentally chant Om at each Chakra's location, from Muladhara to the point between the eyebrows, then in Sahasrara, cervical, heart Chakra .... This cycle is to be repeated but the practice is concluded by a final rising into Sahasrara. 207

about K3 and K4, surely he has practiced Kriya for at least three to four years. This is, in my opinion, the right time to make a further effort and achieve the breathless state. In meeting a kriyaban, I try to understand if he is at moment of his life in which he has the determination to make a greater effort. I have written that: "... a strong push from life experiences is the best thing. One should commit himself as if he had a strong will to knock down a wall that life has placed before him... " To those who are in this phase of the spiritual path, I try to convince them that the right moment has arrived to fully realize the words of PY in AOY where he explains how Kriya frees you from the chain that ties your soul to the body: the breath. At this point I cannot avoid hinting at the importance of calming the mind with Japa. Yes, I acknowledge: I am fixated on this tool! On the other hand, I never found anything like Japa to improve my Kriya. Kriya is a challenging art to raise the state of your consciousness into four main states: the first is characterized by a perfect mental silence, the second is an terrific euphoria in the heart where one loosen himself out of devotion, the third is the breathless state, the fourth is the final liberation given by the awakening of Kundalini ( in a few words a synthesis of the four levels of Kriya Yoga). We know that for the second state there is K3 and K4 and for the first state what have we? It is not Kriya Pranayama because Kriya Pranayama is always present -- it touches all the Kriya levels. Specific of the first level is Talabya Kriya -- the "palate" Kriya, intended both as an exercise for stretching the frenulum, and also as preparation for the deep absorption to be gained in Kechari Mudra. The first part of any rationally and functionally built routine is helped -- and thus brought to perfection -- by mental silence during your daily life. For this purpose I counsel Japa: something that acts both on the conscious and the subconscious mind. To the student I explain that he cannot practice Kriya by the sheer strength of will alone, that he cannot move Prana along the subtle spinal channel by the most intense visualizations only. It is necessary to live a spiritual life, namely one in which the mind is almost always in a state of silence. I think that it is a mistake that the Kriya schools don't officially give the teaching of Japa. Perhaps the pride and arrogance of some kriyabans estranged them from a practice that they consider much too simple. Yet, some great disciples of PY actually hinted at Japa: they knew that those who practice Kriya immersed in the ensuing state, will not encounter obstacles in calming the breath almost suddenly, after few breaths of Kriya Pranayama. Thus I check that the teaching of the Japa is understood without misinterpretation. For example I want to be sure that the student understands that it is not important to think about the meaning of the Mantra though it is essential to vibrate it strongly in the breast and in the head. I want that they practice it and tell me if it is not true that it comes also to them the irresistible impulse to put everything in order. Then I recommend an extremely simple routine in which they have K1 and K4 also, but with a moderate number of repetitions. To this the two afore described techniques 1. and 2. follow. Usually the breathless state appears during procedure 2.. At this point the student can tackle the advanced K2

teaching. How to Experience the K2 Teaching inside the Breathless State To those who have realized the breathless state, I counsel the following: Having reached the breathless state, a kriyaban puts his arms on the armrest. Then, with his tongue in Kechari Mudra, he takes a long inhalation. He expands the rib cage and keeps it expanded while completely forgetting the breath. He does not exhale. His breath remains immobile in the upper part of the lungs. He concentrates on Muladhara, then climbs up the spine, with his awareness, slowly, without breathing, millimeter after millimeter. When he reaches the heart Chakra he has a remarkable blissful sensation. He will have here the assurance that he can go further holding his breath. This state is a divine gift and is the result of the completion of the incremental routines and of a good command of K4. At this point, without exhaling, he applies the instructions of K2 to Muladhara. But first, he accomplishes the internal act of raising it ideally into the point between the eyebrows -- this happens without using the physical breath. He applies then the typical procedure of K2 (contraction of the muscles near the Chakra, rotation of the fingers, concentration on the changing of color....). Then he relaxes the contraction of the muscles and prepares to move to the next Chakra. If he feels that his body needs breath, he breathes. This is no place for tension and discomfort. If he is not able to restore the breathless state, if he feels that Prana has glided down, below the chest, he may stop here for this first day. Another day will come when he will be able not only to enter again in the breathless state but he won't feel the need to breathe between one Chakra and the next. He will raise each Chakra into the light of Kutastha, always remaining without breath, keeping Prana immobile in the upper part of the lungs. Therefore, K2 means closing the ears and contracting certain muscles, plus moving the awareness from Chakra to Chakra perceiving the Omkar vibration, diversifying from Chakra to Chakra, and revealing that each center has its own vibration (its own "rhythm") -- while dwelling in the state of Antar Kevala Kumbhaka (effortless holding the breath after inhalation.)


Some Remarks on the Preliminary Techniques The routine recommended by the organizations that spread the teachings of PY is: •Recharging exercises •Hong So •Om technique •Maha Mudra •Kriya proper •Jyoti Mudra •Final concentration in the spine and in the Kutastha. When the Higher Kriyas are added, they are practiced after Kriya proper or after Jyoti Mudra. In time, there comes a tendency to simplify. Many eliminate entirely the preliminary techniques Hong So and Om; some practice only one or both after Kriya proper, at the place of the final concentration in Kutastha. Those who have read my book and, remaining faithful to the received teachings, set themselves the goal to achieve Kechari Mudra, start their routine with Talabya Kriya. Therefore we seldom talk about the Hong So and the Om techniques. My thought on the subject is that these techniques can be used with good effects. In my opinion, Hong So is excellent for a brief session, or as mental Pranayama after Kriya proper; and the Om technique is the ideal practice of K2 and Jyoti Mudra -- especially at night: a calm meditation where no limit of time is set, where there is no trace of hurry. Hong So Facing the issue of the Hong So technique, we agree that this is not a technique that gives you the ability of concentration, unless you already possess it! Whoever decides to practice it, must be endowed with the ability to maintain a high level of concentration. It begins with some deep breaths which are very similar to Kriya Pranayama. Literature explains that they oxygenate the blood and calm the system: actually they put into motion the essential mechanism of Kriya Pranayama -- mixing and the balancing Prana and Apana. As for the Hong-so Mantra there's not much to say about it: it should not be taken as a "magical formula". 13 It must merge with your breath, of which you must be constantly aware of. If you relax your keen awareness of it and remain there like hypnotized by the pleasing sound of the two syllables Hong and So, you shall be disappointed. Your mind will not be prone to being internalized and it won't surrender to the meditative state. Let us suppose therefore to put us under the ideal conditions: we have only ten minutes free, we have made some deep breaths. Now if we respect two fundamental principles, in a matter of two three minutes we shall find ourselves

This techniques is also taught with So during inhalation and Hong during exhalation. You discover that by practicing with So-Ham instead of Hong-So, the effect is same. 210

a student must always wait for the impulse to breathe to appear. it is clear as the sun that it will never settle down! Once the rhythm has stabilized itself. you can observe the breath goes up the spine with Hoooong and comes down with a fantastic state.. the breathing process will continue implacably.a peaceful vibration in a silent mind. A student must be aware of this elastic strength: this guarantees that the pause after the inhalation can freely exist. not the strong one of Kriya Pranayama. will soon verify how this small detail is sufficient to ease the breath off. During inhalation. This elastic force tries to annihilate the pause between inhalation and exhalation. the pause of the breath after inhalation is jeopardized by the chest elasticity -. the chest swells out and gets into an elastic tension. Sometimes I must take a significant amount of time to dwell upon the concept of rhythm. then the problem is nearly cured. up and down the spine . it should be experienced. The mental chant of this Mantra. The same happens in the second Chakra. can easily and naturally conform to a hard-to-change rhythm. When there are the physiological conditions that a pause can exist. only Hong So in each Chakra. The second principle is to be conscious of the movement of one's rib cage.not only by the rhythm. and so on .. one tries to feel this micro breath happening in each Chakra. even if the body "could" stay off-breath for some instants.. After the practice of Kriya proper. In this situation. this procedure can give you the vision of the spiritual eye. The first principle sounds strange to many students: It is very important to not establish any rhythm in the mental chanting of Hong So.. repeated over and over. The 211 . Putting all this into practice. almost invisible breath happens in Muladhara and it is blended with the soothing chant of Hong So -.. When the breath subsides and becomes so short that the procedure is on the verge of evaporating into nothing. The fact is that I deal with persons who have practiced this technique for years and cannot doubt the correctness of their practice. When the student understands that almost always a rhythm was present in his practice. short breath. If your breath follows this rhythm. In other words. then in the third . a "virtuous circle" between this growing calmness and the reduced necessity of oxygen is realized. We have said that this practice can be used as mental Pranayama after Kriya proper. no matter if it lasts just an instant! A student who abides by this principle. One short. until there is no more breath. in a very drastic way.. Being aware of the spine calms the breath enormously. I am sure that many times the student doesn't understand the point. Om Technique It is auspicious that a kriyaban practices the Om technique remaining in the same state that we have described dealing with the advanced form of Jyoti Mudra. It is a natural. After inhalation or after exhalation.

for some it happens when the body is distended to sleep and the consciousness enters the forgetfulness of the sleep state. It can happen only in a state of depth relaxation. By concentrating actively on the internal sounds. 212 .ideal is to practice it for at least 30 minutes. one is lost in them and finally meets the ecstatic state. This technique realizes fully the final three levels of the Yoga path described by Patanjali: Dharana. Dhyana and Samadhi. a remarkable experience of Kundalini awakening will very likely happen. after days or weeks. Despite apparently fruitless attempts.

My teaching was that even if in some context the word mystic evokes a relationship with the mystery. interests and way of behavior. Once this period was over. The impact of certain readings. They didn't seem to realize the relation it had with their own life. the interest of my students about this subject was almost nonexistent. Rather.. something which lays beyond the territories of the mind -. which would have once allured me. This was an unclouded period of my life: I was very gratified to have time and opportunity to pursue such studies. I 213 . the boundary line between the genuine mystical quest and the cultivation of magic ambitions lay. I appreciated those texts that were capable of presenting the essence of those religious movements which flourished freely around the great religions. its suggestibility and vulnerability when it deals with approaching the spiritual path. by its discouraging slowness in dissolving glaring deceptions and fallacies. An incredible amount of magnificent terms.unattainable by the acrobatics of a never satisfied mind. an initiate) into secret religious rituals (also this from the Greek μύω. during the last two years. It was not difficult to see the devastating theoretical inconsistencies of many esoteric movements. with the concept of initiation (from the Greek μυστικός [mustikos].APPENDIX 2 DIFFERENT TYPES OF RESEARCHERS [This theme will be expanded in the next edition of the book] While I was completing the book. the liveliness of certain biographic stories.. there was also a practical introduction to elementary practices like Japa and Pranayama from classical Yoga. in all. inside them. I was more and more stricken by the weakness of the human mind. I had many opportunities to reflect upon how common were those tendencies. The mystical path was considered from different points of view and. I was invited by a local cultural institution to give lessons about the history of the mystical paths. They cleverly disguised improper attitudes. I was delighted to prepare the lessons by studying the best available essays and textbooks -. I accepted the assignment for the subsequent years which. I was aghast at realizing that too many listeners came to my lessons in order to receive support and fuel for their illusions. filled me with nausea as if they were an obscenity brought forth by a monster. Even serious and reliable Kriya researchers were more or less in the same situation. I proposed adding to our study some information about the most known esoteric movements. I inevitably drifted into that most interesting field of studies: the human psyche. widely recognized as demanding and elitist. a mystic is one who tries sincerely (adopting any form of mental and or bodily discipline) to surrender themselves to something which is the quintessence of supreme comfort. to conceal). admitted innocently into my life through the door of meek adapting to the ideals of my first Kriya organization. Unfortunately.I mean books written by academics who didn't belong (or were so smart as to hide their membership or affiliation) to any particular mystical school and manifested a detached attitude toward the whole matter. became five. had the effect of melting away some strong conditioning. My purpose was to compare them with the New Age tendencies and show where. After completing the first cycle of lessons.

rather with perhaps too much empathy. sweated blood over doing their duty. any progress on the spiritual path is really difficult. Religious Conditioning Some people pour into their path of Kriya Yoga a remarkable commitment. don't trust the sheer employment of a technique unless it is coupled with a toilsome effort of tormenting their psychological structure.a path not polluted by the fantasies and deformations of the human mind. block the experience. Only then something tremendously vast. with magic and esoteric tendencies A. they work very hard through self discipline and hard renunciations. when they have worked hard. With this attitude. Religious conditionings can be very strong. They don't relax enough.talked sincerely with many spiritual researchers without any reprimand. To be lost in the core of the Kriya meditation is only a corollary of this pivotal work. being always on the alert. instead of relaxing. I saw that very rarely they seemed to appreciate the concept of clean mystical path -. of my habits. mentally disturbed people or psychically frail. they. beyond the mind. Otherwise. Often they are keen on dreaming a life of pure meditation. and the very roots of iniquity and egoism. breath seems to disappear. The problem is that they feel they are totally unworthy of blissfully divine experience. while their free time becomes filled with trivial occupations. their Redemption.that a spiritual experience emerge when they are physically tired. fatal in certain cases. but their basic idea is that the Divine resides outside our human state and that an individual can come closer to It only if they have gained some merit. Often the new situation is subtly corrupting a kriyaban with the vice of boredom and sloth. They are convinced that they have to carry on with formidable work on the psychological plane. In the beginning of their path. in time Kriya will disappear from their life. They brood over one single worry: "What can I do in the domain of my mind. gaining also more time for meditation. 214 . Perhaps it is only my perception. but get nothing in return. Usually they belonged to one of the following four categories: with religious conditioning. They are so admirable in their efforts but if during meditation. manifests itself and overwhelms any sense of guilt and the dichotomy of worthy or unworthy. fatiguing at the extreme. in order to ameliorate myself?" They want to build brick by brick. They entertain the thought of limiting as much as possible the normal activities of the day to embrace a work of spiritual study. There may be only one way out -. The mystical experience happens when one is totally relaxed and at peace with oneself. just as if it is a complex construction. Only in this way they think it is possible to uproot any deeply ingrained bad habit. What comes out by yielding to this plan? They discover that this sudden leap into a "new and happy condition" has put an halt to an irreplaceable chance to grow and it is not automatic that it becomes the best territory for deep meditations. those for whom esoteric knowledge is all in all.

then. They whined that they had followed the instructions to the letter and now they were in very bad conditions . a chronic unhappiness to venture on this enterprise. the essence of Kriya can be neither measured nor granted. only when I saw that they strove to master Kriya with a dedication which excited my admiration. Mentally disturbed or psychically frail Some mistake meditation for alternative medicine. they seem to look at Kriya with suspicion . Other books.. there remains nothing. I was perplexed because of their obsessive selfobservation but accepted with enthusiasm to work with them. The result was almost null. They have the tendency to squeeze people. In this they seemed to use always the same lethal scheme of behavior. In almost all the cases I observed two negative tendencies: they push away from themselves any intelligent and sincere person that can help them and. at the same time. but it should become an integral part of your life."does it really work"? But no human can ever touch the supreme Good of Kriya unless they place it. are not able to get rid of the parasite people and negative situations. they hurt themselves. of a depression. Kriya can work even if you are not a "religious" person. The expectation that Kriya could work as a mental therapy began to take shape in me after reading a book where a physician described how he cured some cases of mental disturbances through Yoga. up to a point where.B. led me to encourage a couple of persons suffering of. Those who practice Pranayama within the negative state of an ill person who clings to it just like another unlikely alternative medicine. as Carlos Castaneda writes. and it leads nowhere. knowing in their heart they will be disappointed. extolling the evolutionary value of Kriya. to apply the mystical techniques of Kriya hoping to come out. They exasperated and eliminated definitively those few persons who accepted to help them. The reason some people place in vain their hopes in Kriya comes from the fact that some authors wasted their time in asserting that Kriya is a science with guaranteed results. pulse. Trying clumsily to camouflage their skepticism by pretending a nonexistent spiritual interest. above all the other achievements of the world. Kriya cannot be a graft of a foreign organ. I hope people will understand that it is not correct. emphasizing the fact that their present suffering 215 . "Guaranteed"? What does that mean? Although there are physical states (breath. applying it. let us say. We can rationally expound its principles but we cannot bring the whole entirety of it onto the table of a laboratory.. They used to "wring" an accurate and detailed therapeutic counsel. will have no other result than a headache. Therefore let Science be Science and let the mystical path be "another thing". Trying to make their friends feel guilty for having given a wrong counsel. cerebral waves) that can be influenced by meditation. slowly but unrelentingly. I accepted to support people in their effort of utilizing Kriya as an alternative medicine. as by a miracle. with unshakeable trust. they hoped to obtain greater attention from them. Perhaps the main miracle it will produce will be the joyful decision of dropping all the useless habits through which you have hurt your own being and jump courageously into a new life.

was due not to their chronic disease. try to get you involved in endless discussions. I will tell an anecdote. 216 . of whose hardness and inflexibility he would have. I accepted to read what for a friend was a masterpiece of esoteric literature. seized with blind fury. They conceive the spiritual path as a philosophy which in itself has the power of redemption. by studying such junk. C. were forced to react in this way by the recriminations of ungrateful and mentally disturbed people like the ones we are considering here. I had other grounds to feel uncomfortable. he annihilated them with a merciless judgment. It was impossible for me to consider the complete picture of their life. As in the fable of Bluebeard. He took an oath not to help them anymore in any way. I was amazed to see how. the author's imagination dared to develop free from the relationship with reality and from the rules of logic. He preferred to keep them at a distance. The whole thing seemed to me pure fun -. You try to no purpose to make them realize that an endless wealth is waiting to manifest behind the screen of their mental revolutions. Instead of binding that friend to them. About their inability to get rid of negative people and situations. How could he think.comparable to that of reading a fantasy novel. I'm not referring to intimate matters but to facts about which it is acceptable to discuss . There is no much to be said about them. While reading it. who blamed the techniques for having caused their sufferings. but to this specific wrong counsel. 14 Spending a lot of time with them. was the offspring of the unbridled imagination of the author. Knowledge is all in all Usually they place a great emphasis on ethics. but they won't allow its radiance to clean the dusty cellar where they prefer to live. for a long time. The book surprised me for the quantity of information it contained. forgetting any past habit of courtesy. grounds for regret. I sensed that in their life there was a region where they preserved and nourished a malefic mushroom from which they extracted the elixir of their suffering.for example to maintain a double life when it is not essential and it is extremely wearing… When I went straight to the point. but it was a lie. All ended when one day he started a polemic about the fact that aspiration toward mastering a meditation technique like Kriya Yoga 14 This pernicious mechanism might have exacerbated not only people but organizations as well. After a great insistence. Having seen the specter of ingratitude. They love to cultivate purely esoteric-occult knowledge. to experience something beyond mind? I counseled him some good books from which he could draw benefit. they lost him definitively. through an intoxication with words. they would grow darker and roughly break off the conversation. I wonder if those Kriya organizations that have gradually turned away from a positive attitude toward all people and shifted toward a plethora of prohibitions and of what seems an absurd bureaucracy. there were some "rooms" where they wouldn't let me enter. He stated he had already read them. They spend too much time reading spiritual books. I entered an almost hypnotic state and didn't immediately realize that each chain of ideas therein contained was without support.

at the same time utilizing any means to develop his hidden psychic potential. He behaved toward me in a very cordial way but. there were those to whom Kriya was just another esoteric school which sometimes encroaches on magic territory. "Now that humanity is different from before. whose texts (canonical 217 . I respected his choice and immediately ended the farce. showed a dialectical gift that made me feel like an idiot. He met a self-named expert in occult matters who purported to know the secrets of an almost extinct esoteric path and. who created the impression of being a dreamer. He was convinced that only by using certain rituals. to drink and to enjoy life!". D. he didn't stop dreaming that in the esoteric field there were secret techniques. He had a following of ladies who where enthralled by his spiritual talks. such teachings are not revealed to just anyone" he started off. in their hands. he neglected the normal rules of health. He argued how it was possible to practice it without using not even an ounce of will power.a channeler -) (to whom he went in order that the spirits reveal to him the karmic reason of an illness. To my surprise. even those described in the rituals of ceremonial magic. He got into a situation in which his economic base. Magic esoteric tendencies Lastly. He went on paying attention to the revelations coming from a healer (. completely reduced to shambles. I recall a friend of mine who was adamant in practicing Kriya making glaring mistakes. a spiritual technique . The pseudo expert. formulas and initiatic symbols. when it dealt with defending his choices. He intuitively understood the difference between the mystical and magical dimensions. was it possible to complete the evolutionary jump conducive to liberation. at the same time.) It was impossible to correct him.which was practiced centuries or millennia ago. didn't even try to get immobility in the final part of his routine. I saw the case was beyond cure. they could be dangerous. a common friend told me that our "philosopher" had self imposed an Indian name and was teaching Yoga. as well as the attitudes to be changed in order that his problem be astrally destroyed) but. finally concluded: "Today's students would not know how to appreciate them and. I began to laugh and I was not able collapsing into giggles for the rest of the day. then after a pause and with a sigh. to assume the correct position of the backbone. was at risk of being swept away. As opposed to his sophism. by few privileged beings. in particular. easily bewitched him. (For instance. during meditation. but was not so naïve as it seemed. which constituted a short-cut to Self realization. known only to a few elects. after about five years from our last meeting.far more advanced than those known today . essential to his living. I would (one hundred-fold times more!) prefer to listen to a funny guy shouting at me: "I leave Kriya to idiots like you: I like to eat. haunted a church where he pretended a genuine devotion while asking a "particular" benediction as a bland form of exorcism. nevertheless.meant cultivating desire and this was against Buddhist principles. He sought total harmony with life." He used an enchanting terminology similar to that of the Kabbalah (mystical teaching within Judaism) and talked effortlessly about original Christianity also. refused. For some time he tried to "improve" Kriya by incorporating various esoteric techniques.

I don't need a recharge of motivation by turning back to old readings: it is the radiance of my memory that saves me each time. so he would not to guess their origin. murmuring: "Only for you. let's turn on the suns that are never off! I had a thought. enough I've had of the mind and all its phony stars. After having expressed some reservations. gasping in order to find "myself" again. was preparing to receive such an incomparable gift (our occult expert underlined with emphasis that it was a gift and that nothing could adequately compensate the benedictions that such an initiation would bring to his life) the teacher distractedly decided what kind of trash-stuff he was going to demonstrate with glaring solemnity. Later. My friend tried to captivate the teacher in order to receive more information.) While my friend. imprisoned in his chimera.. consenting to whatever behest . implacable logic.united to the promise of keeping absolute secrecy . I received a very long letter from him. After reading it. It was an essay on the basic theories which supported his practice. since in that way he would confirm the great value attributed to that event. During the jubilant season of his training. he witnessed the rekindling of his passion and the comedy repeated..was conspicuous. convinced that the meeting with the expert had been decided in the higher spheres. I would stand fast anyway. he will realize that the techniques for which he paid a fortune had been taken from some books and altered. he continued his inexorable run toward the abyss." 218 . My thought was fixed on a sentence of Sri Sri Aurobindo which I repeated as if hypnotized: Enough. in effect.provided that this extraordinary secret will be revealed to him. obviously! (Such teachers affirm invariably that they give the donations to a certain monk— interestingly not a priest— who supports an orphanage. all the people I know. my friend spent two days in sheer fervor. indomitable. As soon as the new technique was acquired and tested with indescribable emotion. This illusion is. lived the best moment of his life. a poor victim quivering with emotion.and apocryphal) he was able to interpret in a non-conventional way. After having received his "drug". I cannot predict if. but because Kriya has already given me something incomparable. The donation he offered during the initiation . The donation would enable the teacher to carry on the good works. He heard about other incomparable valuable "revelations". he actually fell into the trap. one day. not because I hope one day obtaining some particular result from it. completely satisfied. luminous and warm and fancied to tell it to him: "Even if all my friends. would leave Kriya. Confiding that he was willing to accept whatever toll and deprivation. I could not practice my Mantra but a couple of times. it was written with a lapidary. I felt the need to walk in the open air and practice Japa. our smart teacher at long last capitulated. My friend. My feeling of alienation seemed to stretch out as far as the horizon and touch the rim of the sky. every day. only because I feel I am guided to make an exception".

This Mudra is a direct way of getting in touch with the locked and stagnant energy at the base of the spine and to pump it up. the yogi's posture must be steady and pleasant. Aswini (Ashwini) Mudra "Ashwa" means "horse". later one will come to a complete command and will be able to use them. Alchemy [taoist internal -. If we take finally into account those kriyabans who are expert of Hatha-Yoga. reaches the Bindu. Bringing all one's force 219 . avoids some physical problems. it is confused with Mula Bandha [see]. is essentially the movement of Prana (the particular form of energy present in the upper part of the trunk – lungs and heart) into Apana and the movement of Apana into Prana. with slight adaptations. applied simultaneously. the perfect position is undoubtedly Padmasana [see]. The three Bandhas. They are energy valves as much as they are locks.Nei Dan] The Taoist Internal Alchemy is the mystical tradition of ancient China. create an almost ecstatic inner shiver. during exhalation. Bandha In Yoga no practice of Pranayama is considered complete without the Bandhas. the Apana moves from its seat up and mingles with Prana. sometimes. which prevent the energy from being dissipated and redirect it inside the spine. who have become very flexible. a sort of shroud prevents the yogi from contemplating the Spiritual Eye. in most of the Kriya techniques. in its initial phase. The basic definition is to repeatedly contract the muscles at the base of the spine (sphincter) with the rhythm of about two contractions per second. The most part of the kriyabans are comfortable with the so-called Half-lotus [see]: this. For the average kriyaban. The continuous repetition of this event generates an increase of heat in the navel region: this calms the breath and kindles the light of the Spiritual Eye. It reminds us of the techniques of First Kriya with such precision that we have all the reasons to assume that it consists of the same process. Associated with the lower abdominal region. scattered in the body. Uddiyana Bandha and Mula Bandha] In the very beginning of the Kriya path. Bindu A spiritual center located in the occipital region where the hairline twists into a kind of vortex. not simple muscle contractions. it is responsible for all the bodily functions (elimination for example) that take place there. When we inhale. "Aswini Mudra" means "Mudra of the female horse" because the anal contraction resembles the movement a horse makes with its sphincter immediately after evacuation of the bowels. a yogi has only an approximate understanding of the Bandhas. indeed. Apana Apana is one of the five forms of energy in the body. [See Jalandhara Bandha. Siddhasana [see] is considered superior to any other Asana. a feeling of energy current moving up the spine. Sushumna Awakening is sustained. Asana Physical postures fit for meditation. There may be slightly different definitions of it and. According to Patanjali. Until the energy.GLOSSARY This glossary has been added for those who already know the meaning of the most common terms used in Kriya but do not wish to retain uncertainties about the way they are utilized in this book. Kriya Pranayama. the energy from outside the body is brought within and meets Apana in the lower abdomen.

one feels a fresh energy in the body. Leadbeater book "The Chakras. by Sir John Woodroffe.Swadhisthan . the Muladhara. and the Padaka-Pancaka. we encounter the root Chakra . in a book entitled The Serpent Power. linked with Ajna Chakra and with the vision of the third eye (Kutastha). ovaries in women). Breathless state It is experienced after years of Kriya practice. to our ability to ground ourselves in the physical world. When it manifests. a kriyaban does not feel the need to take in any breath at all or one takes in a very short breath but doesn't feel the need to exhale for a very long time. It is difficult to describe them: we cannot bring them onto a table in a laboratory. W. with the subsequent dissolution of the mind. creativity. In any Yoga book we find descriptions which rest on a translation of two Indian texts. the Sat-Cakra-Nirupana. It is related to instinct. security. a deep stimulus of it produces deep involving dreams. and to the deepest part of the subconscious realms. without the necessity of oxygen. its action may be perceived as a feeling of living a placed inside the spine between the last lumbar vertebrae and the beginning of the sacrum. to the desire for material goods and also the building of a good self-image. whose 220 . sexuality vitality." is in large part the result of the mental elaboration of his own experiences. It does not simply mean that the breath becomes more and more quiet. almost impossible to be utilized. reaching eventually the dimension of the base Chakra. These concepts had been further polluted by theosophy and similar esoteric literature. If this Chakra is in a harmonious state. Chakra The word Chakra comes from the Sanskrit cakra meaning "wheel" or "circle". The Chakras are the "wheels" of our spiritual life. No author has ever "proven" the existence of the Chakras – as no man has ever proven the existence of the soul.) The breath becomes so calm that the practitioner has the factual perception that one is not breathing at part it intersects the region of Muladhara's influence. the awareness of the physical universe. The matter depicted there seems to be unnaturally complicated. or sacral Chakra . The descended energyconsciousness lies coiled and sleeping at the base of the spine and is called Kundalini she who is coiled. they must be faced and eradicated. alias Arthur Avalon. It is said that its energetic projection is the area of the sexual organs . is not an easy task because the deeper roots of the Ego are to be found right there. this state is the result of having completed the work of cutting of the heart knot. Bhrumadhya The region between the eyebrows. in that tiny place. The second. a center which distributes energy to the legs. It has nothing to do with holding the breath forcefully. we are centered and have a strong will to live. irradiating especially the Gonads (testes in men. (Longer than the time which medical science considers possible. Through the practice of Kriya. The controversial C. Muladhara symbolizes the objective consciousness. sustaining its life from inside. It is the state where the breath is entirely non-existent. they are described in the tantric texts as emanations from the Spirit. Since it is related to base emotion. According to the Kriya theory. Located over the anus at the very base of the spinal column. whose essence gradually has expanded in more and more gross levels of manifestation. to the lowest part of the pelvis. We human beings consider only the physical world as real: it is only when our Kundalini awakens that we regain the full memory of the reality of the subtle dimension of the Universe. embodying the physical world. we can have an experience of the Chakras.named Muladhara in Sanskrit.there. in the lower part of the coccyx.

the Adam's apple is the fifth and the point between the eyebrows may be considered as the sixth. It allows detachment from illusion and is related to one's overall expansion of awareness and degree of attunement with the Divine Reality. in the sense that together with the hypothalamus it acts as a command system of all other endocrine glands. we are able to affirm with determination the purpose of our life. It is the seat of the intuition. the pineal Chakra . the central part of the sternum region is the fourth. Many authors state it awakens artistic inspiration. 221 . Teachings pertaining to the "Frontal Chakras" are to be found by some kriyabans coming from Sri Yukteswar's disciple lineage." which means it has the command or control of our lives: through controlled action. it is said that it has something to do with the capacity to express our ideas in the world. It is said that it fosters a sense of personal power. it is said that Ajna Chakra has a vital role in the spiritual awakening of a person. the ability to develop superior aesthetic perception. It seems to be related with the capacity for communication and with taking personal responsibility for our actions. it brings to reality the fruit of our desires. which is part of the immune placed in the spine at the level of the navel. The Anahata .heart center. The core of the Kriya teaching regarding them.right above the top of the head. feelings of profound tenderness and compassion will start to develop. It is said that it influences. It is a superior reality and we can experience it only in the state of breathlessness. The hypophysis has a vital role in organism.". Consequently. There is a universal agreement that it is related to higher emotion.nature is sweet and alluring. by churches and by organizations in general.navel center or solar plexus . A healthy and fully open heart Chakra means to be able to see the inner beauty in others—in spite of their apparent faults. Ajna . The perineum is the first one. the genitals region is the second one. In Sanskrit. Grounded and comfortable with our place in the universe. What is of great interest for us. is that when these points are touched with concentration. There is a progression from the instinctual "gut emotions" of the lower Chakras to the higher emotions and feelings of the heart Chakra.influences the pituitary gland [hypophysis] and the small brain. Since it controls the activity of the vocal cords as well. It is said to influence the pancreas and the adrenal glands on top of the kidneys. or is bound with. The supreme Chakra is the Sahasrara .throat center. compassion. secure feeling of "I Am. the energy around the correspondent Chakra in the spine is revived. "Ajna" translates to "command. The person with a healthy throat Chakra no longer thinks to blame others for his or her problems and can carry on with life with full responsibility. near the end of the dorsal vertebrae and the beginning of the lumbar vertabrae. It is possible to "tune" into it by utilizing the Bindu as a doorway.just like the role played by adrenalin. located in the spine at the height of the middle part of the dorsal vertebrae . located in the central part of the brain .is said to influence thyroid and parathyroid. One is able to love everyone. exactly amid the last cervical vertebrae and the first dorsal vertebrae . It ends the predisposition to being influenced by other people. The Manipura . even the strangers we meet on the street. This connection gives fuel to the idea that this Chakra has the same role played by those glands: higher emotion and energy .the third eye Chakra. When a person concentrates on it. Vishuddha .is said to influence the thymus. love and intuitiveness. the navel is the third. is that opening this center means to see life in a more neutral manner and see what others cannot see.

in which the Guru is seen as the dispeller of darkness: "Gu" stands for darkness and "Ru" for one who removes it. Flute sound (during Kriya Pranayama) During the exhalation of Kriya Pranayama. rather they are founded upon the afore summarized tenets. light. when a kriyaban succeeds in assuming the position of Kechari Mudra. and movement sensation. increases mental calmness and transparency and helps to prolong effortlessly the practice of Kriya Pranayama. In this matter we can use either faith or reason. a guide and much more. according to them "Gu" stands for "beyond the qualities" and "Ru" for "devoid of form". through which they will progress along the path to Self realization. In other words. let me roll my sleeves up and move on!" Half-lotus This asana has been used for meditation since time immemorial because it 222 . In other words. A Guru is a teacher. Lahiri Mahasaya's ideas seem to go in a significantly different direction. The scriptures declare that the Guru is God and God is the Guru. Granthi [see knot] Guru The importance of finding a Guru (teacher) who supervises the spiritual training of the disciple is one of the tenets of many spiritual paths. Once he said: "I am not the Guru. but as the personification of all the wisdom and spiritual realization which. dwelling upon the Omkar reality. Many kriyabans are confident they are able to transform the no-matter-how-received instruction into "gold". a strong movement of energy climbs up the spine. I don't maintain a barrier between the true Guru (the Divine) and the disciple". uninterrupted flow of consciousness. Usually. it gives rise to the Om sound. sincere. This highly enjoyable sound cuts to pieces any distraction. a disciple has to be humble. Now the question is: do the Kriya techniques work outside the Guru-disciple relationship? There is of course no scientifically proven answer.Dharana According to Patanjali. the awareness. On the contrary. Dhyana ensues from contemplating the essential nature of the chosen object as a steady. a slight hiss is produced in the throat. the Kriya practice will be able to produce. in due time. During this event. during initiation (Diksha) Gurus bestow the esoteric knowledge upon their disciples. He added that he wanted to be considered a "mirror". Dharana consist in directing the focus of our attention toward the revelation of Spirit: Omkar's inner sound. It has been likened to the "flute of Krishna". Some scholars dismiss that etymology. whose vibration will be so strong as to overwhelm the flute sound. They think: "Beyond either reasonable or improbable expectations of finding a Kriya expert at my disposal. This happens just after having calmed the breath. In order to gain all the benefits from the contact with the Guru. In Kriya. Dharana is the concentration on a physical or abstract object. Dhyana According to Patanjali. Kriya organizations don't insist upon the concept of Shaktipat but accept all the rest. We are accustomed to explaining the term "Guru" on a metaphorical interplay between darkness and light. One day the flute sound turns into the Om sound. The internal phenomenon of Shaktipat happens: the dormant spiritual realization within the disciple is awakened. is soon lost in Samadhi. In Kriya. then the quality of that sound increases. pure in body and mind and ready to surrender to his Guru's will and instructions. each kriyaban should look at him not as an unreachable ideal. Lahiri Mahasaya describes it: "as if someone blew through a keyhole".

The monks of Athos might have kept on contemplating peacefully this Uncreated Light (they considered it to be the highest goal of earthy life) had not their methods been denounced as superstitious and absurd. trained in Western Scholastic theology. who developed the quietist theory which such detail that he may be called the father of this movement. whatsoever. Hesychasm attracted the attention of a learned member of the Orthodox Church. very easily obtained. He was well educated in Greek philosophy and defended Hesychasm in the 1340 at three different synods in Constantinople. In certain delicate situations.provides a comfortable. The practice. In this way the buttocks are slightly raised. a sinner"). He called the hesychasts "omphalopsychoi" . it may be providential to do it on a chair. Barlaam. The hands rest on the knees. The right knee is dropped as far as possible toward the floor. sitting position. It is a discipline integrating the continual repetition of the Jesus Prayer ("Lord Jesus Christ. while the knees are resting on the floor. was scandalized and began to combat it both orally and in his writings. brought toward the body and the sole of the left foot is made to rest against the inside of the right thigh. The heel of the left foot should is drawn in as far as possible. while practicing contemplation and self-discipline: they had no doubts about the fact that knowledge of God could be obtained only by purity of soul and prayer and not by study or mental amusements in the field of philosophy. Hesychasm The word Hesychasm derives from the Greek word "hesychia" meaning inner quietness. Barlaam propounded a more intellectual approach to the knowledge of God than the one taught by the hesychasts: he asserted that the spiritual knowledge could be only a work of inquiry. provided it has no arms and is large enough. and he also wrote a number of works in its defense. In approximately the year 1337. their method of asceticism came to the fore as a concrete set of psychophysical techniques: this is properly the core of Hesychasm. the position is prolonged by reversing the legs. one leg at a time can be lowered and the knee articulation relaxed! Some Yoga teachers explain that the pressure of a tennis ball (or of a folded towel) on the perineum can give the benefits of the Siddhasana position. brought ahead by one's mind and translated in discrimination between truth and untruth. Later. between the energies or operations of God and the essence of God: while the essence of God can never be known by his creatures. Son of God. He held that no part of God. His energies or operations can be known both in this life and in the next. It was already used by the early Church Fathers in the 4th and 5th centuries) with the practice of asceticism. could be viewed by humans. He used a distinction. which involved specific body postures and deliberate breathing patterns. There he encountered the hesychasts and heard the descriptions of their practices. In this way. The right leg is bent at the knee and the right foot is placed over the fold of the left leg where the thigh meets to hip. Gregory Palamas. Barlaam of Seminara. they convey to the Hesychast the truest spiritual 223 . meditation is not possible. When the legs grow tired. The objection was mainly based on a vigorous denial of the possibility that this Uncreated Light was God's essence. thick enough. Outside this condition. seeking inner peace and spiritual insight.people having their souls in their navels (owing to the long time they spent concentrating on the navel region). with the buttocks toward the front half of the cushion. already articulated in the 4th Century in the works of the Cappadocian Fathers. "the new theologian" (1025-1092). tranquility and stillness. a Calabrian monk who held the office of abbot in a Monastery of Constantinople and who visited Mount Athos. It was Simeon. The practice of the hesychasts was defended by St. The left leg is bent at the knee. have mercy on me. There were hermits dwelling in the desert. was intended to perceive the Uncreated Light of God. The secret is to maintain an erect spine: this can be obtained only by sitting on a cushion.

it causes the mind to be quiet and allows focusing it on the goal of meditation. the Roman Catholic Church has never fully accepted Hesychasm: the essence of God can be known. The world of names and forms creates restlessness and 224 . We do not realize the quantity of energy we squander away when we get lost in our thoughts.knowledge of God. afterwards becoming bishop in the Roman Catholic Church. since it obstructs the Kundalini's path as she begins to move toward the higher centers. Kechari is compared to an electrical bypass of the mind's energetic system. In Palamite theology. this radiation reaches and stimulates the Ajna Chakra in the center of the brain. Up to this day. Ida [see Nadi] Jalandhara Bandha In Jalandhara Bandha the neck and the throat are slightly contracted. It is related to our physical body: it preserves the ignorance of our infinite nature and is the first obstacle in the spiritual search. Hesychast doctrine was established as the doctrine of the Orthodox Church. It changes the path of Prana flow causing the life force to be withdrawn from the thinking process. the nasal septum. if possible. The Yoga tradition explains that there is a Nadi going through the center of the tongue. Today Mount Athos is the well-known center of the practice of Hesychasm. it is the uncreated energy of God which illuminates the Hesychast who has been vouchsafed an experience of the Uncreated Light. Brahma Granthi (located in Muladhara) is the first knot. Kechari is literally translated as "the state of those who fly in the sky". the Vishnu Granthi at the heart Chakra and the point between the eyebrows. 2. In 1341 the dispute was settled: Barlaam was condemned and returned to Calabria. "Amrita." the "Nectar. According to Lahiri Mahasaya a kriyaban should achieve it not by cutting the tongue Fraenulum but by means of Talabya Kriya [see]. there can be no distinction between the energies and the essence of God. Coupled with Kriya it is a substantial aid in clarify one's complicated psychological structures. Pingala and Sushumna Nadi meet. in the "inner space". Instead of allowing the thoughts to jump like frogs here and there. By placing the tongue in contact with the uvula at the back of the soft palate. By slipping the tongue into the nasal pharynx touching. energy radiates through its tip and when it touches that bone protrusion. Those are the places where Ida. Later. but only in the next life." This is a fluid with sweet taste perceived by the kriyaban when the tip of his tongue touches either the uvula or the bone protrusion in the roof of the palate under the hypophysis. A more elusive claim is the experience of the elixir of life. in our plans. Kechari turns this pernicious way of exhausting all of our vitality into its opposite. The mind begins to lose its despotic role: the "inner activity" happens no more by the thinking process but by the effortless development of the intuition. Japa [See prayer] Kechari Mudra This Mudra is carried in one of the two following ways: 1. Kevala Kumbhaka [see Breathless state] Knot The traditional definition of the Granthis identifies three knots: the Brahma Granthi at the Muladhara Chakra. while the chin is pressed against the breast.

but by following the further evolution of his thought. you come up instantaneously. cuts us off from the reservoir of energy in the Sahasrara region. There are definitions which say nothing: they make a misleading synthesis of its methods and list its effects in the same way one would describe Hatha Yoga or Raja Yoga practice. a keen desire to help suffering humanity.] It has been explained that there is a strong connection between Brahma and Rudra knots. [see chapter 7 for further discussion. having already unfastened the knots of tongue. one cannot meditate effectively. the Ida and Pingala Nadis cross over and then come down in the left and right nostrils." I don't want to contest them. The knot of the tongue." "Kriya Yoga brings about the stilling of sensory input. the time bound consciousness dissolves . Knot of the navel IV. Kriya Yoga If we want to understand the essence of Kriya Yoga it is necessary to put aside some definitions found on the web. Lahiri Mahasaya underlines the importance of overcoming two other obstacles: tongue and navel which are unfastened by Kechari Mudra and by Navi Kriya. we are led astray. respectively. Discriminating knowledge combined with Yoga effort can unfasten the Knot of Vishnu and obtain deliverance from the traditional bonds. Actually. in the following order: I.prevents the mind from becoming one pointed. Perfect emancipation is achieved. visions. The four phases of Kriya Yoga are experienced by unfastening all the afore mentioned knots. Ambitions and desires trap the mind. This knot creates the desire to preserve ancient knowledge. traditions. Although he states that by constantly remembering the inner sound of Om we can achieve the 225 ." "Kriya Yoga hastens the practitioner's spiritual development and helps to bring about a profound state of tranquility and God-communion." [Yoga sutras II:1] This is definitely correct.the yogi establishes himself in the supreme Atman whose seat is Sahasrara Chakra. Ida and Pingala are time bound. but I think that Kriya is broader than what is implied. Lord Vishnu is the lord of preservation. and intuitions. and is related to the astral body and to the world of emotions. At a point between the eyebrows. institutions. and meditating on Iswara. in Lahiri Mahasaya's vision. deeply rooted in our genetic code. Knot of Vishnu (heart Chakra) III. and religious orders." "Kriya Yoga is a technique that activates the astral cerebrospinal centers. The knot of the navel originates from the trauma of cutting the umbilical cord. Knot of Brahma (Muladhara) & knot of Rudra (point between the eyebrows) As we can see. as soon as you cross the door of Sushumna (in Muladhara). "Kriya Yoga is the science of controlling life energy [Prana]. Until one unties this knot. heart and navel. Rudra Granthi is related to the causal body and to the world of ideas. respectively. unimpeded. after piercing the Rudra knot. It produces "compassion". Vishnu Granthi is located in the area of the heart Chakra (Anahata). to the "door of the infinite" in the point between your eyebrows. two secondary knots (tongue and navel) have become of primary importance and two main knots (Brahma and Rudra) are considered a two-phased event that characterizes the fourth and last stage of Kriya. mental control. Knot of the tongue II. Patanjali refers once to Kriya Yoga: "Kriya consists of body discipline.

" Antar Kumbhaka" (Internal Kumbhaka).: alternating breathing. the kriyaban perceives a radiation of fresh energy sustaining each cell from inside. In Kriya we distinguish between "Bahir" (external) and "Antar" (internal) Kevala Kumbhaka. particularly in Yoni Mudra. then the breathless state settles in. I. Internal Kumbhaka II. Maha Mudra and Thokar. the exhalation is called Rechaka. Kumbhaka Kumbhaka means holding the breath. contains also – in a broader sense . We breathe out deeply and hold the breath for a few seconds. guides the bodily energy into the heart Chakra. Usually this kind of Kumbhaka is accompanied by the use of the Bandhas.breathing in deeply through the left nostril. this demonstrates how natural this fact is. meaning "the act of emptying". III. holding thus. so in Kumbhaka the breath and the Prana is held in the body. IV. It is called Kevala Kumbhaka or automatic suspension of breath: it is the breathless state where there is no inhalation or exhalation. the underlying principle of I. as in a grip of calmness. "Bahir (external) Kevala Kumbhaka" (the development and climax of I. It is like having crossed a barrier and moved into a measureless space: Kriya yoga is a miracle of beauty. It is observed that when we are about to do something which requires our total attention. Maha Mudra. but our breath is suspended of its own accord.removal of all the obstacles that block our spiritual evolution. meaning "holding". Mantra] and pure effort of attuning with the Omkar Reality. and not even the slightest desire to breathe. is holding the breath after a deep inhalation. the peak of Pranayama. with its balancing action on the right and on the left side of the spine. he does not develop this method. II. It consists of control of breath [Kriya Pranayama]. which literally means "the act of filling". When a perfect stillness is established. solidity and reliance originates. "Antar (internal) Kevala Kumbhaka" (the development and climax of II. In the classic Yoga literature there are described four types of Kumbhaka. He is far from describing the same spiritual discipline taught by Lahiri Mahasaya. When the physical breath is totally transcended and a circulation of energy happens in the body – the breath is said to have become "Internal" – a feeling of infinite safety. our breath is automatically held. We are not deliberately doing Pranayama. The fourth type is the most important of all. In Pranayama the inhalation is called Puraka. prayer [Japa.) 226 . A turning point in Kriya is the achievement of IV. Retention of breath is called Kumbhaka. is present in some variations of Navi Kriya and in all those procedures involving a series of very long and calm exhalations which seem to end in a sweet nothing. followed by the Thokar procedure. The soothing process of calming the breath. It is such an important phase in Pranayama that some Yoga teachers doubt whether a modified way of breathing which does not include any Kumbhaka can be called Pranayama at all. happens in different Kriya techniques.) appears during mental Pranayama (or during any procedure linked with the Third Kriya) after having relaxed and thus emptied the rib cage. The second. Kriya Yoga is a "mystic path" utilizing the best tools used by the mystics of all religions.the principles of III. the unceasing reflex originating the breath. Kumbha is a pot: just as a water pot holds water when it is filled with it. then holding the breath and then exhaling through the right… It is considered the easiest form of Kumbhaka. Kevala Kumbhaka. when all the inner and outer movements cease. In the Kriya praxis. This is known as "Bahir Kumbhaka" (External Kumbhaka). The third type is that practiced by alternate breathing .

All is absorbed in a short time. Kundalini is Sanskrit for "coiled": it is conceived as a particular energy coiled like a serpent in the root Chakra (Muladhara). Kutastha Kutastha. Each book warns against the risk of a premature awakening of Kundalini and asserts that the body must be prepared for the event. By concentrating between the eyebrows. The representation of being coiled like a spring conveys the idea of untapped potential energy. it is the purest layer of our consciousness. We seldom use the term "Kundalini awakening" and try to avoid what could give the impression that such an experience has an alien nature: Kundalini is our own energy. Kundalini The concept of Kundalini and. Therefore both affirmations are one and the same. Almost any yogi thinks he or she is capable of sustaining this premature awakening and the warning excites them more than ever: the problem is that many do not have (or have lost) a genuine spiritual approach and nourish a fairly egotistical condition. with the rib cage moderately full of air-Prana. brought to open manifestation by thoughtless practice of violent exercises or drugs is the cause of those phenomena. a ''rocket missile'' shot through the spine! Its nature is beneficial. particularly. not all are equally open in exposing the practical details of the process. Its movement is like having a ''volcano erupting'' inside. It is only through repeatedly raising of the Kundalini. then a small crepuscular light. which is located at the root Chakra. It is depicted as rising from the Muladhara up through the Sushumna. It sleeps in our body and underneath the layers of our consciousness. Alas. Insomnia. There is a connection between Kutastha and Muladhara: what we are observing in the space between the eyebrows is nothing but the opening of the spinal door. without problems. unusual or extreme strengthening of emotions… We are rather inclined to think that a dormant malady. Its rising is not a mild sense of energy flowing inside the spine. mystical illumination etc. there is an evident resistance in trusting the reports of Kundalini awakening accompanied by troubles such as patently disturbed breathing patterns. of its awakening. the search for a repetition of the episode may lead to disorderly and careless practice of strange techniques. when it arrives at the crown Chakra (Sahasrara). Maha Mudra and Thokar (or during any procedure linked with the Fourth Kriya) after having completed a long inhalation. a formless darkness is first perceived. In a ''true awakening. hypersensitivity to environment may indeed follow the authentic experience. provides a framework which is convenient for expressing what is happening along the spiritual path. then other lights. without ever establishing a minimal foundation of mental silence. Most of the spiritual traditions have some awareness of Kundalini. waiting to be aroused either by spiritual discipline or by other means like particular experiences of life. the "third eye" or "spiritual eye" is the organ of inner vision (the unified astral counterpart of the two physical eyes). 227 .'' the force of Kundalini eclipses the ego altogether and the individual feels disoriented for some time.appears during the highest refining of Yoni Mudra. eventually we have the experience of a golden ring surrounding a dark stain with a blazing tiny white point inside. the place in our body where the spiritual Light manifests. others identify it with the condition in which the energy is perfectly calm at the base of the spine. that the yogi succeeds in obtaining Self realization. activating each Chakra. Some Kriya teachers affirm that the condition for entering the last and the highest Kriya stage is that the vision of the spiritual eye has become constant. In the Kriya theoretical framework we consider Kundalini to be the same energy that exists throughout the body and not specifically residing in the Muladhara Chakra. it bestows infinite bliss. distortion of thought processes.

one should perform one Maha Mudra. the flute. rather than along Ida and Pingala. in Mula Bandha the perineum seems to fold upward as the pelvic diaphragm is drawn upward through the motion of the pubic bone. The importance of this technique becomes clear as soon as we observe how it incorporates the three main Bandhas of Hatha Yoga. the drum. There are different levels of development in the experience of inner sounds: you will hear a bumblebee. This action is marked by the end of all the physical movements. It has its basis in the fact that one who follows the mystical path infallibly meets this manifestation of Spirit . unremittingly. the lute. one does not simply tighten the sphincter muscles. Mahasamadhi [see Second Kriya] Mantra [See prayer] Mental Pranayama In mental Pranayama a kriyaban controls the energy in his body by forgetting the breathing process and focusing only upon Prana in the Chakras and in the body. Mula Bandha has thus the effect of causing Prana to flow into Sushumna channel. (Differently from Aswini Mudra. Remaining quietly seated. It is recommended to repeat mentally. This is the cosmic sound of Om. your favorite Mantra.) By contracting this muscle group. gradually uniting with Prana at the navel. After some weeks of dedicated practice you will tune in with a sound deeper than all the above-quoted astral sounds. especially the blood pumping. by a perfect physical and mental stillness. Nada Yoga is an experiential meditation. You may use a particular position of the body— a squatting position with the elbows resting on the knees. the harp. Surat-Shabda-Yoga is another name for Nada Yoga. you simply focus all your attention on subtle sounds that come from within. There is a ratio between the number of its repetitions and the number of the breaths: it is recommended that for each 12 Kriya Pranayama.are slightly contracted while a mental pressure is exerted on the lower part of the spine. the current of Apana which normally gravitates downward is pulled upwards. There are indeed a thousand and one reasons to practice Maha Mudra with firmness.between the anus and the genital organs . just to give an example—to plug both the ears. your awareness is drawn.Maha Mudra Maha Mudra is a particular stretching position of the body. Awareness of inner sound must happen. It is into this deeper realm that. At times. Nada Yoga Nada Yoga is the path of union with the Divine through listening to inner sounds. anyone can be involved in this even without having fully understood it. Other sounds are actually the "sounds behind the audible sound". It is a highly enjoyable form of meditation.whatever may be their preparation and their convictions. Some of these sounds are actually just the sounds of your body. the breath becomes so calm that the practitioner has the absolute perception they are not breathing at all. your listening skills will improve and you will become more sensitive. rather than the audible sounds from outside. Lahiri Mahasaya describes it as "produced by a lot of people who keep on striking the disk of 228 . sooner or later. His awareness dwells on both the inner and the external component of each Chakra until he feels a radiation of fresh energy vitalizing each part of the body and sustaining it from inside. The sound is perceived in different variations. Mula Bandha In Mula Bandha the perinea muscles . while over time gently easing the mind into relaxed concentration. the clapping of thunder or a hum like an electrical transformer.

some kriyabans make it a regular part of their routine.from this belief it derived the term "Age of Aquarius" or "New Age". it is not a part of Kriya Yoga proper. Nadi Sodhana Alternate nostril breathing exercise. which now. whose nature is vibration with specific aspects of sound. The essential thing is that people realized that the discoveries of Physics.. Renaissance and Enlightenment ages are studied. The most important are Ida.. the seat of the Samana current.. there is no need to dwell on the affirmation. such an epoch will be studied with the same respect with which nowadays Humanism. body. There are many grounds to believe that. in the expansion of the awareness out of the narrow fences of the small ego tied up obsessively to the maintenance of its petty conveniences. New Age The New Age sensibility is marked by the perception of something "planetary" at work. It is coupled in various ways with the practice of Kriya Pranayama. irrelevant for our understanding. Yet. Nirbikalpa Samadhi [see Paravastha] Omkar Omkar is Om.a bell". has become common heritage. It is continuous "as the oil that flows out of a container". rather than to a depth progress in the understanding. because its effects of appeasing and cheering up the mind (especially if it is practiced in the morning) are unmatched. The esoteric-initiation societies. The New Age thought deserves a deep respect for many reasons. in the future. and Pingala (of masculine nature) which flows parallel to Ida on the right side. Navi Kriya The essence of this technique is to dissolve inhalation and exhalation at the state of equilibrium in the navel. Some schools which do not specifically teach it provide some substitutes for it. according to which such a progress coincided with the entry of the solar system in the sign of Aquarius . which flows vertically along the left side of the spinal column (it is said to be of female nature). of Alternative Medicine. it may include the practice of Thokar. human thought has made a strong step forward in a healthy direction. Since distinguished men of science have contributed to the New Age sensibility. Padmasana In this asana the right foot is placed on the left thigh and the left foot on 229 . During the twentieth may be a variation of Kriya Pranayama utilizing the Mantra Om Na Mo Bha. overcoming for a long time the differences of culture and religious vision. The term "Omkar" or "Omkar Kriya" is also utilized to indicate any procedure fostering the Omkar experience -. Nadi Subtle channels through which life energy flows throughout the body. all converged toward one and the same understanding: the substantial interdependence among the universe. psyche and spiritual dimension of human beings. the Divine Reality sustaining the universe. the developments of the Depth Psychology. had already recognized this truth. If I hint at some "frenzies" I refer to the excessive use of alternative remedies for any type of real or imaginary troubles and to even more dangerous theories borrowed with a lot of superficiality from various esoteric currents. light and inner movement. Sushumna flows in the middle and represents the experience that is beyond duality.

which have their location respectively in the chest. Pingala [see Nadi] Prana The energy inside our psychophysical system." It is explained that. Thus. vital for us as a healing. combined with Kechari and Shambhavi Mudra. which extend during the day. Pranayama is the control of the energy in the whole psychophysical system by using the breathing process with the purpose to receive a beneficial effect or to prepare the experience of meditation. this Asana creates an energetic condition in the body. From our initial efforts directed at mastering the techniques. suitable to producing the experience of the internal light coming from each Chakra. Ayama (expansion) or Yama (control) is the second.although they may not involve the perception of any energetic current . the current flows in the deepest channel in the spine: Sushumna. healthier and comfortable to practice either the Half lotus or the Siddhasana posture. Paravastha designates the state that comes by holding onto the after-effect of Kriya. Prana is divided into Prana. Apana and Samana. In Kriya Yoga. I do not counsel anyone to perform this difficult posture. the word Pranayama can be understood either as the "Expansion of Prana" or as the "Control of Prana". The name means the "posture in which the lotuses (the Chakras) are seen. the awareness accompanies the movement of the energy around the six Chakras. Pranayama The term Pranayama is comprised of two roots: Prana is the first. it is no longer to be sought with care. Through many techniques (like Maha Mudra) and by the experience of Kriya Pranayama with Internal Breath we experience the fresh vitalizing nature of Vijana. in the region of the belt. That the term Prana is interpreted in two ways should not create confusion – provided that one considers the context in which the word is used. when the breathless state is familiar: the tranquility state lasts forever. By deepening the process. we perceive moments of deep peace and harmony with the rest of the world. Paravastha comes after years of discipline. Apana.the right thigh with the soles of the feet turned up. In the initial phases of Kriya Pranayama we are mainly interested in Prana. Personally. Paravastha This concept is linked with that of "Sthir Tattwa (Tranquility)". in the low abdomen.arms and legs. it is much wiser. Flashes of the ending state of freedom comfort the mind while coping with life's battles. This is not negligible since this experience causes the skeptical practitioner the discovery of the spiritual dimension and pushes him or her to seek something deeper. 230 .can create a remarkable experience of energy rising in the spine. The common Pranayama exercises . I would prefer the first but I think that the correct one is the second. at least for those living in the west and not used to assuming it since infancy. Udana and Vijana. Samana. When we use Shambhavi Mudra and during mental Pranayama we contact Udana. with the tongue either flat or turned back. the kriyaban has an experience of unthinkable beauty. There are yogis who had to have cartilage removed from their knees after years of forcing themselves into Padmasana. in the head and in the remaining part of the body . In Kriya Pranayama the breathing process is coordinated with the attention of the mind up and down along the spinal column. Named by Lahiri Mahasaya. In other words. While the breathing is deep and slow. When by a long practice a subtle form of energy circulates (in a clearly perceivable way) inside the body while the physical breath is totally settled down. It is not just joy and peace but something deeper.

The descriptions of Samadhi and of NDE follow the same pattern: actually the nature of the phenomenon which takes place in the body is almost the same. which can be experienced only in the breathless state. "Ask. In my opinion. a particular pressure over the head may be felt. however I prefer to think in this way and …. which may stimulate a reflection upon the meaning of the spiritual path. the repetition of the Name of the Divine is known as Japa. here I will restrict it to the repetitive prayer. which is a broader term than prayer. Mantra] Prayer is an act of communion with the Higher Reality that allows a person to make a reverent plead. Only after a deep practice of Kriya Pranayama. divine…. however it would have a superlative value. The sequence of words used in a prayer may either be a set formula or a spontaneous expression in the praying person's own words. repeat internally". Sahasrara The seventh Chakra extends from the crown of the head up to the Fontanelle and over it. To become one and the same thing with God is different from to awaken to the realization that we are a part of That One? Words deceive our comprehension and kindle egoist expectations. celestial. infinite.Prayer [Japa. the awareness can provide a glimpse of the Eternity beyond mind. The number of beads is generally 108 or 100. Our language is strongly hampered: magniloquent words risk meaning nothing. The Mala is used so that the devotee is free to enjoy the practice without being preoccupied with counting the repetitions. This word Japa is derived from the root Jap . Prayer is a subject of wide range and scope. In both the experiences. (Some believe that the repetition of a Mantra has the mysterious power of bringing about the manifestation of the Divinity "just as the splitting of an atom manifests the tremendous forces latent in it"). which is 231 . and ye shall receive" (Matt. Samadhi does not mean "union with God. to seek guidance." We take so many things for granted. when the breath is very calm. The term Mantra derives from the words "Manas" (mind) and "Tra" (protection): we protect our mind by repeating unrelentingly the same healthy vibration. everlasting. is the attunement with it possible. supreme. In most forms of Japa. the repetitions are counted using a string of beads known as a (Japa) Mala. then (this happens to the trained yogi) that lofty awareness blends. integrates with the customary life. 21:22). It may be performed whilst sitting in a meditation posture or while performing other activities. Samadhi According to Patanjali's Ashtanga (eight steps) Yoga.meaning: "to utter in a low voice. One is thrilled by words such as: absolute. 8. 7:7. I have half a mind to suggest a sober definition of Samadhi. Mantra can be a name of the Divine but also a pure sound without a meaning. near death experience (NDE). Whatever be the appeal to God. then in a whisper and then mentally for some time. Japa is also the repetition of any Mantra. It cannot be considered of the same nature as the other Chakras. this act presupposes a belief in the Divine Will to interfere in our life. A certain number of sounds were chosen by ancient yogis who sensed their power and used them extensively. Let me therefore define Samadhi as independent from any accident. Samadhi is the state of deep contemplation in which the object of meditation becomes inseparable from the meditator himself: it results naturally from Dharana and Dhyana. Usually a Mantra is repeated verbally for some time. eternal. but a superior reality. such as walking. Even if Samadhi were no more than a NDE experience. It is not easy therefore to concentrate upon it as we do with the other Chakras. In India. to offer praise or simply to express their thoughts and emotions. beatific. discover much more during the actual Samadhi experience than to thrive in rhetoric. This opinion may disappoint those who smell a restrictive and limiting shade of meaning in it.

at death). the soul's natural desire to regain union with the Infinite Source puts in action a natural mechanism of appeasing the cardiac plexus. Shambhavi Mudra A Mudra in which the ocular bulbs and the eyebrows are upturned as much as possible. This position of the legs. combined with Kechari Mudra. we could reply that this genuine experience is unmatched in fostering in a clean way the Kriya Yoga ideals of a balanced spiritual life. b… Some believe that this supreme calming of the heart was achieved only by a mental action of immersion in the point between the eyebrows. Thokar A Kriya technique based on directing the calm Prana . He might have done one single Thokar and stopped his heart. Siddhasana The Sanskrit name means "Perfect Pose". The reports say that those who were around him did not notice any head movement. Lahiri Mahasaya in his well known portrait is showing this Mudra. even after Kechari Mudra is achieved. entering the light of Kutastha. Mahasamadhi is not a "shrewd esoteric trick" to master the mechanics of a painless suicide. often the inferior eyelids relax and a bystander can observe the white of the cornea under the iris. The right heel is placed against the pubic bone. Second Kriya It has been reported that by using the Second Kriya technique. Now the debate is: what procedure did he make use of? a… Many claim it was the technique of Thokar. the feat happened only at the most proper moment .totally transformed for the better. for this reason.toward the location of one (usually the 4th) or more Chakras. the sole of the left foot is placed against the right thigh so that the heel presses on the perineum. Swami Pranabananda. In this Asana.according to a Karmic point of view when the moment was right. this means he put so much mental strength in this act as to block the energy which kept his heart throbbing.collected in the head through Kriya Pranayama . By increasing the concentration on the spiritual light. Surely each great master relies upon his already built ability to enter Samadhi. There was no violence to the body. This practice creates a distinct calming effect on the thoughts and. and particularly of the Fraenulum. The purpose is to attain Kechari Mudra [see]. By creating a total peace in his being. All the visual force of the ocular nerves is gathered on the top of the head. by a particular (jerking) movement of the head. This fosters the breathless state. It is possible that he arrested the movement of the heart and therefore left his body. closes the pranic circuit and makes Kriya Pranayama easy and profitable. left his body consciously (this feat is called Mahasamadhi .the conscious exit out of the body. The practice of Thokar is to be deepened throughout the 232 . an eminent disciple of Lahiri Mahasaya. Similarly when other great ones left their body there was no movement. To those who wonder if it is fair to diminish the worth of the Kriya ecstatic state by reducing it to a process of contacting for some time the after life dimension. it is never put aside. the lights of all the other Chakras are revealed. a light grows in the region between the eyebrows. Sushumna [see Nadi] Talabya Kriya It is a stretching exercise of the muscles of the tongue. c… In my opinion. Guiding Prana into the Anahata Chakra.

Why utter empty words? Whom is he trying to fool? The mystic path.) Draw the belly up as much as possible. Lahiri Mahasaya drew with extreme precision the three-bends form which is perceived by deepening the afterKriya-Pranayama meditation. avoiding stealing. it descends into the seat of the Rudra knot (the region from medulla oblongata to Bhrumadhya between the eyebrows). but not a vow. which is also crossed by entering the spine and coming up toward Bindu. avoiding being lustful. Uddiyana Bandha Abdominal lock: it is usually practiced with breath out but in Kriya it is also utilized with breath in especially during the practice of the main Kriya Mudras: Maha Mudra. Only through practice is it possible to understand their real meaning and. study of the Self and surrender to the Supreme God (Brahman). Yama – Niyama Yama is Self-control: non-violence. M. bending to the left. parrot fashion. It might have happened that Lahiri knew this technique since youth. the necessity of observing those rules and. A beginner cannot to much depth understand what "Study of the Self" means. esp. contract slightly the abdominal muscles until you intensify the perception of the energy in the spinal column in the region of Manipura Chakra. we discover that Thokar is a variant of the Sufi's Dhikr. Then it reverses again its direction pointing toward the seat of the Brahma knot in the coccyx region. which is brought about by repeating a particular short prayer during the day and by guiding it. Dhikr is the practice of the "memory" of the Divine. consequently. (see the studies conducted by Gardet and M. Navi Kriya and Yoni Mudra. Anawati. Then it reverses direction cutting the Vishnu knot whose seat is in the heart Chakra. Some teacher repeats. When an affirmation is made. contentment. Yama and Niyama are a good topic to study. To practice it with breath out. Take a false inhale (perform the same action of an inhale without actually pulling any air into the body. Jalandhara Bandha. cannot compromise itself with any rhetoric. see them flourish in one's life. a discriminating researcher understands that they are to be considered really as the consequences of a correct Yoga practice. This path begins in Bindu. avoiding lies. Gardet in Revue Thomiste (1952-3)).years in order to get the ability to enter the state of Samadhi with just one stroke. To practice it with breath in. Studying the practices of the Sufis. Hold your the breath out. into particular centers of the body through specific head movements. after having given absurd clarifications of some of the above points (in particular which mental trick to utilize in order to … avoid being lustful). during moments of seclusion or group devotional practice. Some forms of prayer he saw were mild forms of Thokar. it is that. when followed honestly. goes across it and continues toward the right side of the body. utilize. It was His genius to develop it to the utmost perfection. passes on to explain the techniques. discipline. Tribhangamurari Some Kriya Acharya teaches the practice of Thokar in a very particular way. The central teaching is guiding your awareness along a three-curved path called Tribhangamurari (Tri-bhanga-murari = three-bend-form). an ideal to bear in mind. Yoga Sutra (by Patanjali) The Yoga Sutras are an extremely influential text on Yoga philosophy and practice: over fifty different English translations are the testimony of its 233 . Niyama is religious observances: cleanliness. at least partly. These teachers explain that in the last part of His life. and non-attachment. While in most Kriya schools these rules are put as premises to be respected in order to receive initiation.

Pratyahara. Although. Yoga is described as an eight stage (Ashtanga) path which are Yama. Patanjali is called "the father of Yoga". deities. an inhomogeneous whole of practices betraying an indistinct and contradictory theoretical background.between the eyebrows . Although we are not sure of the exact time when their author Patanjali lived. The core component of this Mudra is to bring all the energy into the point between the eyebrows and hinder its scattering by closing the head openings – the breath is quieted in the region from throat to the point between the eyebrows. while keeping more or less the same position of the fingers. common to all the traditions of the Indian thought. which spreads throughout one's being. Dhyana. or sacred books . there are minor differences among the schools: some give a greater importance to the vision of the Light and less to the dissolution of breath and mind. the practitioner has no contact with the external world. Patanjali affirms the importance of directing our heart's aspiration toward Om. what was abstract he made practical! He was a genial thinker. Pranayama. One satisfactory remark. found in the traditional Yoga literature. no externalization of consciousness. and 200 A. Asana. the importance of Patanjali's work is beyond discussion: he clarified what others had taught. at times. Dharana. we can set it between 200 B. However. the final realization of the Kriya path. gurus.the Yoga of self discipline and meditation. About its practical implementation." besides being a rigorous system of meditation practice.C. because like the baby in the uterus. implies devotion to the Eternal Intelligence or Self. thus establishing a sound theoretical basis of Raja Yoga . not just a compiler of rules. We know that "Yoga.D. Among the first. His equilibrium between theism and atheism is very appreciable. The Yoga Sutras are made up by a collection of 195 aphorisms dealing with the philosophical aspects of mind and awareness. We do not find the least suggestion of worshiping idols. meaning "uterus". there are those who teach. such as Karma. If a deep relaxation state is established in the body. to focus upon each Chakra and to perceive their different the same time we do not find any atheistic doctrine either. this practice succeeds in generating a very intense ecstatic state.importance. is that this technique gets its name "Yoni". 234 . Kutastha . Yoni Mudra The potential of this technique the place where the individual soul had its origin: the delusive Ego needs to be dissolved there. and Samadhi. and therefore. Niyama. The Sutras define also some esoteric concepts. his work is actually a compendium of pre-existing oral Yoga traditions. the last three are concerned with disciplining the mind up to its dissolution in the ecstatic experience. The first five steps build the psycho-physical foundation for having a true spiritual experience. in all effects.

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