November 16, 2006

Words as gateways for the Soul

alan kazlev Says: November 15th, 2006 at 3:26 pm Firstly, in the Aurobindonian tradition there is no one method recommended for everyone. In fact in Integral Yoga the idea is that everyone finds their own technique! But if there is a common theme, it is aspiration for the Supreme, surrender, offering of the self to the Divine. This is what I meant by Bhakti, the way of the Heart.
Now this is very different to the very focused mental path of conventional meditation (such as Raja yoga and Buddhist one-pointedness). However the two are not contradictory. Rather one might say that the object of meditation is aspiration for and offering of the self and all the contents of one’s consciousness up to the Supreme (in whatever guise one chooses to represent the Supreme). So by meditating, focusing, concentrating, in this way, head and heart become one.
My own experience is that by reading Sri Aurobindo and the Mother’s works, often a particular phrase or sentence or even several sentences will suddenly make a huge impression on me, a sense of profound spiritual truth. If I reread and muse over what is said there, I get a sort of feeling (probably not the right word) or quietude. If I go with this, it is much easier to meditate and aspire for the Supreme because the momentum is already there. This quietude I call The Mother and/or Sri Aurobindo’s presence. It is the transmission, the shakti, of their teaching and their spiritual Revelation. That is what I mean about using words as gateways for the Soul.
I confess that this is a practice I do too little. It is all too easy to be caught up in addictions, to let the monkey mind carry one along, distracted first by this bauble, then by that one. Hopefully in the future, when I’ve finished my books and other projects, I will have more time to dedicate to this practice.
Anyway, it is likely that every spiritual teaching and tradition has an effect like this. By reading the words in a receptive manner, one accesses the transmission of that teaching. Some 15-20 years ago I read Da Free John (the Dawn Horse Testament, a book i found extraordinary difficult to read) and felt his presence, although for me it was nowhere as potent as that of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. That just means that his path isn’t the one for me (it has been suggested by an ex-devotee of Da that he is stuck in the “Intermediate Zone”; given Da’s inflated claims this may be so). I have also felt a presence, a transmission of teaching, through reading Tibetan Buddhism. And Jung. And through reading about Nityananda. And through looking at Meher Baba’s picture and/or reading about him.
Each time the flavour of the experience is subtly or even not so subtly different. e.g. I have felt the experience with Ken Wilber and it is very powerful, almost like a drug; that is why so many people are drawn to Wilber and his work and writings. Also this is why the Wilberian tradition can be considered a real tradition. And it is not the case that all the paths lead to the same mountain, as some perennialist and New Age teachings say. Rather it is what Jorge Ferrer says in Revisioning Transpersonal Theory - an Ocean with Many Shores. But not even an Ocean, because that implies a simplistic unity. And Shores implies you end up somewhere and go no further (well this often happens i suppose) Anyway, not sure if all this is of use but it’s the way i see things and my own experiences.

No comments:

Post a Comment