The Mother Divine
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(Excerpts from The Maid in the Quest of Her Beloved)
Sri Sri Sitaramdas Omkarnath

Part I

The Crazy Man was muttering “Jai Sitaram, Jai Sitaram” when Ramdas came to him and said, “Oh Crazy father, i am in great trouble!”

The Crazy Man: What’s your trouble, Sitaram?

Ram: My revered Guru has recently favoured me with Mantra. As I mutter it however, my body shivers all over, there something gnawing within the heart, the tears flow out of the eyes, the entire body seems to have expanded. What am i come to, most reverend Sir?

The Crazy Man: Jai Sitaram! Why, it’s very well. Your Mantra has come to be instilled with life.
Ram: Well may you say, ‘it’s very well’ reverend Sir! But look at me. I am sick of this continual shaking from the tip of the toe to the end of the hair I shiver all over. Oh! What a tremendous shiver it is; i have not the strength to hold it. As i proceed to bow, the head dashes on the ground with a violent thud. There are times when I perspire—for no apparent reasons whatever; each hair stands on end. Or look at another typical experience. I sit absorbed in meditation when, to my surprise, the hand darts out with a whisk and passes gently over the body. Or the mouth begins to gasp, as though it is in its last throe. Now it clatters within the brain; now there is light rippling around; now again there is sound of all sorts, coming from nowhere, but audible all the same. Good heavens; what are all these things i wonder! For a few days I have been feeling a sort of a pull from within, at the point where the two eye brows meet, much as if a fish has been tugging at the float on the fishing line. Not only these but a good many other experiences occur, which I cannot recall; but anyhow great is the joy I derive therefrom. If ever I happen to attend a kirtan, there goes the hand up; then it breaks into a thousand acrobatic feats! What a lot of sound does the mouth emit! The body stands erect now and then, it begins to dance. Now it sways and heaves, now it drops down, now again it becomes stiff. To move about in society is a problem. What am I to do, most reverend Sir!

The Crazy Man: Well, Sitaram, it is great good fortune that you have been admitted to siddha yoga; your Mantra has come to be instilled with life; the dear little maid has started on the pilgrimage to meet the beloved—now is meeting to come about; this will be followed by a complete merger.

Anandashru Pulako devaveshah kuleshwari
It-yet-at Kathitam Devi Mantra chaitanyamuttamam
Hridaye granthi bhedascha sarvavayaba bardhanam
Anandashru nipulako devavesha bhavad dhruvam
Gadagadoktischa sahasa jayate natra samshayah

Ram: Pray, what is siddha yoga?

The Crazy Man: Your revered Guru has released power within you. This form of initiation goes by the name of diksha-sara; it is also called Shakti Diksha. Your Mantra has come to be instilled with life; Kula Kundalini has awakened. You are being possessed by the deity—there’s no cause for worry. You need not make any effort; everything will come to pass of itself. Buck up, my child! You are fortunate. Go on with your Japa, Sitaram—only carry on Japa. Meeting is at hand.

Ram: Why does the body dither in this odd manner on the eve of the meeting?

The Crazy Man” Integrated and non-attached as man essentially is, he yet considers himself limited, finite—and that is due to false identification with what are illusory, namely the three bodies called sthula, sukshma and karana. When the Guru, in his infinite mercy, grants siddha Yoga the crazy little maid sets herself to purify each of them. Look here Sitaram! When you dip a pitcher in the Ganges, you see that though there is the same water in the pitcher and in the river, yet the two cannot mix for the pitcher stands in the way; they can mix only when the pitcher breaks. so also with man. Immersed in the sea of God, he remains apart from God—only for his sense of the body. When by the Guru’s grace, the lone maid wakes, she sets about breaking the three pitchers of sthula, sukshma, karana deha, one by one before she can merge in the Beloved. So far as the sthula deha goes, its centre is the Brahma Granthi, the knot of the Supreme, which is at the navel. When the sthula deha becomes pure, the lone maid rises to the great void the Sunyakasha, which is in the heart. Then does naad manifest itself. There is next the knot of Vishnu, Vishnu Granthi or kanthakasha, that is the centre of the Sukshma deha. It goes also by the name of Ati-Shunya or super-ether. When that is crossed, there is Bheri naad, the naad, that is, of the beating of the trumpet. Finally the lone maid pierces through the centre of the karana deha Rudra Granth or the knot of rudra which is the akasha at the centre of the eye-brows. And then is she merged in the lord of her soul. While the sthula deha, is split, there is action on the sthula deha; when finally, the karana deha compact of vindu, is split, there is bliss all over. It is all the achievement of that dear little maid, you know. Witness the Narada Bhakti Sutra:

Tri-rupa- bhanga-purvakam Nitya- dasa
Nitya Kanti Bhajanatmakam va prema
eva karyam prema eva kary-yam iti.

When the three forms are split, the seeker has to do nothing but make love, make love as the lord’s eternal slave, as his eternal sweet-heart and of course love consists in service and attachment describe the three as sthula, sukshma karana deha: Brahma, Vishnu, Maheshwara; Sattva, Rajas, Tama; Sravana, Manana, Nidi-dhya-sana; Savda, Anuman, Pratyaksha; Sat-Chit-Ananda; Guru, Bhagwan, Bhakta; or by any other names you like the fact remains that the three have to be split into one before you can afford to live in bliss. Jai Sitaram! Yes, that’s why i was telling you when the dear little maid wakes up and begins to break, various reactions occur. Got it Sitaram?

When the Sthula deha begins to be purged, the following reactions take place: the body shakes, the hair stand on end, there is palpitation, hand and feet behave in many odd ways, the face looks distorted, the mouth goes awry, eye-lashes throb, lips quiver, the head nods, there is creeping sensation near the spinal region, there are twitchings in many portions of the body, it seems as if needles are being pricked into it, something snaps and bursts within the ears, one dances in many styles at functions like kirtan, the hand waves in numerous gestures, one gives out a loud thundering roar, sounds of many kinds come out of the throat. Such reactions indicate that the kundalini has finished chastening the Sthula deha and passed on to the task of purifying the Sukshma deha. The Sthula deha consists of the five material substances called earth, water, fire, air and ether. When the crazy dear takes to the elements of earth, the body grows stiff and hard as a pillar, when she takes to water, the tears come to the eyes; when she takes to fire, there is sweat; when she takes to air, you shiver and your hair stand on end; and when she stays in ether, the result is dissolution.

This sthula deha may be purged in many ways. As long as a portion of the body remains infirm, the dear creature resides there; she will not quit it until it is fit. Purgation of the sukshma deha often begins after the purgation of the Sthula deha. Often however the two processes go on simultaneously. When the sukshma deha is purged, transcendent sound, touch, fragrance, taste and smell can be experienced. When the body gets composed visions of transcendent light come; one visualises round white moon-like light; crescent-shaped light; red, blue, dots; star-like light, blaze of fire; flash of lightning; the glow of a fire-fly; burning pyre; flicker of lamp; fine fibre-like light; visions of various deities such as Kali, Krishna, Rama, Siva, Durga, etc; visions too of many saints. An ineffable sweetness comes to the palate; the thrill of a supersensuous touch can be felt within; Siva, who is compact of light, appears and naad begins to be heard.

Ram: Reverend Sir, all these you are talking about occur in the shastras, eh?

The Crazy Man: Oh yes, they do. Many of the shastras will bear me out. It is not merely the holy writ that I have been drawing upon however; these symptoms are bound to appear in all those who have been blest with the Guru’s Grace.

Ram: What, pray, is your Naadlike?

The Crazy Man: i do not know how to explain naad. i have not the word for it. There are billions of naad. The Mantra dissolves into Pranava. The base ‘m’ of Pranava is of Naadall compact.

The Naad Vindu-Upanishad speaks of the following varieties of naad: the roar of the sea, the rumbling of the cloud, the blast of a trumpet, the purling of a fountain, the ringing of bells, the beating of a drum, the tinkling of anklets, the music of a pipe and of a veena, the buzz of bumble-bees and so on. The Hansa-upanishad observes that the japa of the Hansa Mantra, repeated a crore of times, reveals such forms of Naad as chini, chini chini, chiming of bells, the blow of a conch shell, the chord of a musical instrument, the music of a flute, the beating of little drums, the blast of a trumpet, the rumbling of clouds etc.

The Shiva-Samhita and Tripura-Sara-Samuchcha declare that Naad has to be obtained by such processes as closing the ears, and mention Naad of these sorts: humming of honey bees, music of flute and veena, tinkling of bells and rumbling of cloud. In the Shiva Purana as quoted in the Guru-tattva, Uma Samhita and Dharma Samhita there are references to such forms of Naad as sound of trumpet, of bell-metal, bhringa bell, veena, flute, drum, conch, cloud and so on.

These descriptions are but an infinitesimal fraction of the billions of naad that actually exist. An adequate language for the expression of the infinite varieties of naad that can be perceived has yet to evolve. Naadis the supreme. Being the Personal God; naadis Shiva who is of transcendent light all compact; Naadis logos all over. It is naad that appearing in many forms in the seeker’s heart tears to pieces the toils of material existence. Some seeker listens to the tinkling of an anklet and the music of a flute; another hears a sound akin to the whistle of a mill; yet another hears the tick of a clock or the chanting in many voices and to many instruments of the Name:

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare