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Cosmic Meditation | Tantric Meditation Technique
Introduction of Cosmic Meditation from the Upanishads
For yoga there are many forms of yogic techniques which originate from the Upanishads. These techniques and methods progress in various stages of akasha dharana, one of the many forms of cosmic meditation. The point of Upanishadic meditation is to focus the mind on an object or point. The practice evolves to various levels, starting on an external state and gradually moving undergoing an involution towards internal state. The stages are typically referred to as bahir lakshya (external dharana), Madhya lakshyaantar lakshya (intermediate dharana), and (internal dharana). As we evolve through the stages we experience different levels of visualization that help to focus the mind and tune it towards a refined state of concentration.
The base for Upanishadic Dharana is visualization with the field of akasha or the ether. The power of focusing on akasha can be found within the sense of expansion that occurs within the mind. By extracting the facilities of the mind and utilizing them to focus on a specific point of concentration, we can begin to experience a broadening of the mind itself. Expansion is always associated with knowledge as well as a sense of joy and happiness. As we expand our mind we open ourselves to the greater wonders of creation. In contradiction to this expansion in contraction, a condition typically associated with depression, withdrawn, and fear. So by focusing on the various level of akasha we can begin to expand the mind.
In order to succeed in any meditation practice you must try to perfect the technique before proceeding onto the next level. The mind is a very tough and sometime rugged instrument to mold into a desired shape, and only through consistent and dedicated practice can you find success in taming the restlessness of the mind and begin your journey towards the divine space of living. The practice offered below is a vital technique for calming the mind, and after a month of practice you will be able to notice some significant changes in your though content and quality. The practice is derived directly from the Upanishads and can be used by anyone who wants to start or develop their meditation.
The practice that I will be explaining now is the dharana practice of bahir lakshya, bahir meaning external, lakshya meaning aim, and dharana meditation. In this technique we will be focusing the mind on an external object in order to gain concentration through the practice of meditation. There are several techniques described within the practices of bahir lakshya, the first being bhoochari mudra. Bhoochari mudra means gazing into space and is designed to help focus concentration on a whole new level, one that extends beyond our typically applied abilities. For the sake of the students I have decided to only include the first level for the time being. While it is an introductory level of meditation, it is a highly powerful technique for developing meditative qualities within the mind. As time passes I will be adding the next stages of Upanishad dharana for people to practice and utilize. However it is important that you practice sequentially, otherwise you will not receive the benefit of the practices.
The Meditation technique: begin the practice
To begin the technique of Bhoochari Mudra, start by extending the hand horizontally in front of the nose. The hand can be extended at any length that is comfortable for holding for an extended period of time. You must direct your focus and attention to the nail of the little finger. The eyes should remained fixed on the nail and you should maintain a focused and attentive gaze. After some time, remove the hand and focus the eyes in the exact same position as the finger was once located. The focus should be maintained for as long as possible, without letting the eyes focus on a particular object. In this technique we are essentially focusing the mind, eyes, and vision upon a point in space without any regards to an object or thing. Usually the eyes adjust to focus upon a specific object, but in Bhoochari Mudra there is no other object than the ether. You may find this practice very difficult at first, but with time you should be able to focus on the space without focusing on a particular object.
The benefits of Bhoochari Mudra are the yogi's ability to control the sensorial inputs and prevent mental distraction from arising. It is a powerful tool for balancing the nadis and can be practiced for extended periods of time to help develop the mental strength and willpower. The Upanishads state that once you have perfected the practice you will find a blue light upon closing your eyes. This symbolizes the balance and awakening of ida and pingala nadi, two very essential energy tunnels that help in conducting the prana in the body and also contain the powerful spiritual force of kundalini.
About the Author
Swami Shaktiananda is a disciple of Swami Tureyananda from Kodaikanal, Southern India. As a teacher and master of Tantra and other esoteric sciences of India, swamiji is working to share the true spiritual wisdom of yoga with those who are walking the path towards enlightenment. She has taught around the world and has guided many students and married/involved couples towards the spiritual awake through the practices and techniques from tantra. Teaching and practical lessons in tantra and other yogic sciences taught by Swami Shaktiananda can be found on Yog-E online courses in spirituality.