Posts Tagged ‘pratyahara’

Thoughts in Venice

Friday, July 27th, 2007

I went for a walk through Venice beach in L.A. today, if that’s what it’s called. I watched skateboarders for a bit, people lying on the beach sunbathing. The sun is much kinder here than in New Zealand.

Being in that environment I became aware of how many people were behaving in the context that other people would react to them, but then isn’t this true of humanity in general? Riding bikes newly manufactured but from designs of a century ago. Well groomed, well gymed, well toned.

And then there were a couple of large concrete cones just for graffiti, marked by a sign saying that it was for licensed city artists only. Ordinary taggers were not allowed. I wondered if the sign would stop them. It seems that graffiti has now become official art.

But there was unofficial graffiti in the skateboard area, tags at least, another phenomenon of marking territory, asserting identity. Feeling as if you matter and that others that mattered would notice.

The other day I came across an interesting thought around Pratyahara in ReligiousBook.Net. It asserted that

Pratyahara is the stage at which an adept learns how to control the “tentacles” of consciousness… Krishna was saying that one of the things that a man should learn is the ability to draw all his indriyas[tentacles] from the material world inwards, just like a tortoise retracts its paws and head into its shell. Then one should extend one’s indriyas into Divine eons in order to embrace God with them, to draw himself to Him and to merge with Him.

Being in a new environment has made me more aware of how we each extend the tentacles of our consciousness into the social world. And I’ve been wondering what the world would be like if we didn’t do that in the compulsive manner that we currently do.

Tentacles. What an interesting way of thinking about it.

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The Third Eye

Sunday, July 1st, 2007

“Having returned and eaten, the Lord put away his bowl and cloak, bathed his feet, and sat with legs crossed and body upright upon the seat arranged for him, mindfully fixing attention in front of himself.”

I remember reading this passage several years ago and thinking that this refered to holding his attention in the Ajna Chakra (Third Eye). Ajna is Sanskrit for control.

Sutra 54, Book II, The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali reads: “Abstraction (or Pratyahara) is the subjugation of the senses by the thinking principle and their withdrawal from that which has hitherto been their object.”

And if you care to look up Pratyahara in Wikipedia here’s what you’ll find: “Apart from Pranayama, another device that is used to aid in the development of Pratyahara is to concentrate on the point between the eyebrows. This location is known as Ajna Chakra or the third eye.” Is this the root of the nose that some authors on meditation refer to?

Go to Ajna Chakra in Wikipedia and someone wrote that“it represents the superior mental consciousness that favors the direct perception over the invisible worlds, and the direct perception of the subtle aspects of manifestation.”

It is said that the Buddha was born, enlightened and died at the full moon of Taurus whose esoteric key note is: “I see and when the eye is opened all is light”.

May you awaken and be free.

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