The above is a link to my latest article for Mantra Tantra Yantra on the Manipura Chakra, located in the solar plexus.
Hope you like it!
The above is a link to my latest article for Mantra Tantra Yantra on the Manipura Chakra, located in the solar plexus.
Hope you like it!
In the beginning
There was only beginninglesness
Time and space
Within their limitless conceptual embryos
There was nothing
But the blissful nothingness
Of the supreme godhead
On the Mountain of Eternity
Overlooking all that had yet to be
Like the first forceful buds of spring
Bada Dev felt the inklings of creation
Surge up through his infinite being
With an earth-shattering flash
His third eye opened with lightning effulgence
The light illuming
All that was to become
As his myriad limbs set in motion
Bada Dev exhaled the winds
Of the very first cosmic breath
The five elements
Burst like rainbow smoke
From his nostrils
A chaos of red, orange, gold,
Green and blue
Waiting to be arranged
Like a painter with his palette
Bada Dev ordered Earth,
Wind, Water, Fire, and Space
And with his mind as the paintbrush
The cosmos began to be painted
Like volatile chemicals
The primal colours of the five elements
In an undifferentiated torrent
These primordial forces
Sought to escape their master
But Bada Dev tamed them
And set the tempo
For the rhythm
Of these disorganized pulses
And attuning each of them
To his incredible heartbeat
What once was madness
Became a spiral
Around which the rest of creation
Like thread around a loom
Look into the eye of your lover
And you will see the cosmos
Stare back at you
With intensity and devotion
In such wise
All of creation
Comes from the eye of Bada Dev
The whirling of the galaxies
The orbit of the planets
The luminescence of the stars
From the twinkling of his eye
Wreathing himself with nebulae
Bada Dev wears the night sky
As a veil
And if you look closely enough
You can see him staring back at you
Through the sacred glimmer
Of every atom
The true warrior
Abhors both fear and anger
Fear makes us tentative and uncertain;
Small distances becomes insurmountable obstacles
And mice and shadows morph into monsters
Anger promotes rashness
And violent action
The slightest momentary irritation
Can initiate a never-ending war
Both of them destroy clarity
And the perception of reality one needs
To ensure victory
The only victory
Is being peaceful
And if you are peaceful by nature
Then your every action is victorious
A link to my latest blog on the Sexual Chakra on Mantra Tantra Yantra.
Walking on the sky
Exploring the hidden mysteries
Of the ceiling’s geography
How many deserts
Of sandstone and plaster
Will you traverse
Until you return to your web?
You know The Art of Death
Black Stealth sustains your silence
But you roar with a subliminal blood-lust
Even as you make every shadowy corner
Your Cave of Waiting
Can I sleep safely
With you, a many-legged marionette
Sky-dancing above me?
So long as you don’t choose
To make my nostrils your dining room
Then I’m sure we’ll get along well
I enjoyed whooshing along through the long Grasses on the back of The Dragon Queen. I won’t deny that I got an erotic thrill from it – for an immortal, she was quite a fox! – but I was quick to redirect the flow of this sexual energy, as I knew she would immediately sense it – as she must have done already – especially as such a fantasy could be precisely the verboten thought that could set off the afeared response in the grasses that she had been so guarded and cryptic about.
I must admit, I also felt slightly envious. I have always wanted to be able to change my form instantaneously, like a cartoon character; but, while I have been able to warp my thought body during meditative experiments, even during lucid dreaming, my body has always remained rigidly in form, and I’ve never quite been able to fly. But I knew, as my dragonian reflection in the water had already proven, that it would not be long before I was shapeshifting with the best of them, and able to fly, crawl, and dive at my leisure.
Just as I was beginning to day-dream, and drift off into my desultory thoughts, The Dragon Queen landed abruptly but softly, and changed into her fully humanoid form again.
“We’re here,” she said, sombrely.
I looked forward, and I could see a prominent mound, protruding regally before us. The land we had travelled through had been almost invariably flat, with the exception of the sense of a barely perceptible escarpment in the distance. So, seeing this sudden swelling was quite stimulating to the geography of the mind. Both The Dragon Queen and I could sense its prodigious retention of energy.
“Is there anything in particular that I should say and do; or not say and not do?” I asked, suddenly aware that this was likely to be a portentous encounter.
The Dragon Queen smiled and said:
“Just be yourself. You will learn Immortal Etiquette – and how to go beyond it – along the way. Be your fully authentic self. That is why you are here, after all!”
My fully authentic self felt pretty uncertain at that moment in time.
But The Dragon Queen, reading my thoughts, mollified me, saying:
“If you are feeling uncertain, then be uncertain, and make no decisive movements until it has passed. Decisions are thing to be accepted and acted upon – they are not to be rushed, or forced into existence.”
I breathed in the wisdom of this advice, and we walked lightly and solemnly towards the mound.
As soon as we ascended it, we saw The Master of the Long Grasses, sitting placidly on the ground, his tea set laid out before him. I could see the tea steaming perfectly in the gilded, simple, china cups, and could not wait to hold it lusciously in my mouth. It smelled slightly sweet, and I suspected that it was some type of oolong, supplemented by an additional herb.
The Dragon Queen bent on her knees, and genuflected before The Master.
“I am sorry for our tardiness,” she said, humbly and sincerely.
“It does not matter if you are late in keeping appointments, so long as you are prompt in following The Way!” Quipped The Master. “The tea is still warm, so please! Drink!”
I settled down on a mat, sitting on my knees in the Asian fashion, and slowly picked up my teacup. It had a golden edge around its rim, with a fascinating design comprised of many ornate balloons floating through the sky. It was a beautiful design, and, when looked at closely, gave the impression of enormous depth.
The tea was still too warm to drink, so I just enjoyed inhaling its sweet steam, feeling the heat of the cup in my hands, and admiring the loaded potentially of the deep, clear, golden elixir.
“And how did you get along with my grasses?” asked The Master of the Long Grasses, smiling mischievously.
“No incidents, so far,” I said, in a way I hoped sounded winsome.
“Good, good!” He responded, good-naturedly. “Never can tell what that raggedy bunch will take to, next!” Winking. “But you’ll have to excuse me if you find me coarse. It’s been a long time since I’ve had visitors!”
I took this statement as an opportunity to examine The Master properly. He had a long wispy beard, tied up hair, and emanated immense purity. There was nothing ‘coarse’ about him.
“Speaking of time,” I began. “Since we’ve been in this realm, I’ve observed that, although we’ve been travelling for several hours now, the quality of light in the sky hasn’t changed at all. Why is that?”
“Why, he’s a very canny fellow, isn’t he?!” said The Master, turning to The Dragon Queen, and raising his thick, cloud-like eyebrows in comic fashion. “The answer, my boy, is that time moves very differently here from the way you’re used to. That’s why I chided your elegant proprietor for apologizing for her tardiness- a side effect of spending too long in lower realms, no doubt. You could no sooner be late here, than insult a Buddha, and get a beating for it. You probably can’t make it out, due to the somewhat infinite, and mirage-infested, horizon we have here, but it takes the sun no less than fourteen million years to set on this planet. For that reason, it has become known as ‘The Planet of Perpetual Dusk.’ Of the length of the days, I cannot speak. But suffice it to say this: It has been a long time since I’ve seen the night-time.” And, with a slightly crazed look in his eyes, he urged us. “Your tea should be cool enough now. Please, drink! Go on – drink!”
I needed no more encouraging. I took a sip, and was instantly refreshed by the tea, which caused my whole being to shudder with relief. Being without tea for long is like being without love or oxygen – it is always a cathartic and seismic response when you taste it again. The tea tasted clear, and sweet, and had a delicious, ineffable quality to it, that I could not readily describe.
“I know it’s an oolong,” I said, “but why does it taste so unique?”
The Master of the Long Grasses looked pleased.
“It is a Premium Ginseng Oolong,” he said. “After the leaves are steamed, withered, oxidized, and rolled, they are coated with powdered ginseng and liquorice. Here! Look!”
He offered me a small tub of the tea in its unbrewed form. It looked very strange, a mysterious green colour, flecked with gold, like a rare, but volatile rock from a distant moon.
Reading my thoughts, he said:
“Distant Moon Oolong – that would make a remarkable name for it, wouldn’t it? I may start calling it that from now on,” and then, standing up, and directing his voice out towards the grasslands, he shouted “DISTANT MOON OOLONG! DISTANT MOON LOONG!”
We both looked at him quizzically.
“Just letting the grasses know,” he said, sheepishly. “They’re very into that sort of thing. But it is very important that you drink up. I do not give you this tea, arbitrarily. A long and dynamic journey has been arranged for you by the heavens. Ginseng is an immense repository of celestial yang energy, and so is this mound. As such, it nourishes the vitality, and increases the strength. But not all of the places you will be travelling too will be quite so nourishing, or accommodating, with their energy reserves.
“As a human, you have been habituated to living in a solar system, and that relationship to the sun has informed a good deal of your understanding of the astronomy of the cosmos. But there are many different types of planetary system in the universe, not all of which could be said to possess such a unifying, and radiant centre. In fact, much of the cosmos is littered with Lunar Systems – in these, an enormous moon serves as the centre, around which all the sibling planets orbit. Unfamiliar with fire or solar energy, these planets live in a deadened, haunting twilight, beset by interminable waves of hallucination and delusion. There is no mediating ego or waking consciousness here – only the mystery and danger of darkness. It is quite a thing to look upon whilst voyaging through space – all of these bewildered planets moving slowly around a watery, tyrannical moon, in a slow, and sluggish procession. The planets are all deeply bewildered and imbalanced, and, thus, often collide into one another, sending shockwaves throughout the galaxy. We refer to these Lunar Systems as ‘The Nodes of Yin’.”
“Will I ever have to go to such a place?” I asked.
The Master of the Long Grasses nodded gravely.
“On this Moon, called ‘The Floating Pit,’ there is a network of caves. At the bottom of this cave is a chamber of frost and snow. If you can melt this snow, and turn it into water, it can be used to make The Broth of the Illumined. Of course, you will meet many dangers and guardians along the way, but isn’t that always the case when apprehending something profound? You may even have to die before you drink it.
“But let’s not dwell on such things, right now. Such travails are a long way off, and you have not even finished your first cup of tea since leaving the planet Earth! Settle your mind. Leave danger for later.”
With that, The Master of the Long Grasses ceased speaking, and we drank our tea in silence, the whole planet enshrouded in peace, as the sun continued to set at its own impenetrable pace.
Once we had passed through the miraculous vortex of the tea tin, we found ourselves in a beautiful field of swaying, long grasses, the whole region doused in a perfect smattering of lambent sunshine. The Dragon Queen, who, at first, had a dragon’s tail for a bottom half, quickly absorbed her tail, and exchanged them for a sleek, pair of velvety legs. She wore white imperial robes, and had long pink hair.
“You didn’t have to get rid of your tail on my behalf, O great Queen. It didn’t make me feel that insecure.”
“Different realms are more amenable to different forms,” she said, smiling at me softly. “It is better to be all things in all circumstances, than one thing in every circumstance – though, the highest masters make no distinction between these. But, sometimes, these changes and alterations cannot be helped. Like you cannot help getting wet in water, or being set aflame in fire, so you cannot help changing into different shapes when you go into different realms. Check out your reflection. You might look pretty different yourself.”
Doing as she instructed, I moved towards a small pool to the left of us, and checked out my reflection in the surface of the water. I was shocked to find that I, too, was dressed in imperial clothing, though mostly in black; but, more shockingly, I found that my face had taken on a slightly fearsome, dragon-like aspect, my beard, moustache, and hair billowing goldenly, almost like fire, so much so, that I made quite a scene, and began swatting at myself to try and put it out.
“You do not need to be disturbed,” assured the Dragon Queen. “One of the reasons I chose you as my tea student was for your fluidity and malleability. I have seen you take on and cast off many identities over your short life as a human, and your longer one throughout the cosmos. Just because your changes were usually internal, it does not mean that you should be affrighted now that they have leaked outside as well.”
“But why am I so dragony? And what is this ‘longer life throughout the cosmos’ you speak of? Just how long have you been watching me?”
“In order to be taught by a dragon, you must become as a dragon. But don’t worry, that appearance is not permanent. The first principle of being a dragon is that all appearances are illusory and subject to change, like the quality of smoke being influenced by the fire it is exuding from. But there is always something beneath the fire. Always something beneath its beneath-ness.
“As for your longer life in the cosmos, I shall not trouble you with that now. The more you traverse these strange and myriad realms, the more your natural memory of them will return. It is quite an organic process, and you need not dwell on it now, for we are late in meeting ‘The Master of the Long Grasses.’
“Alright, I’ll bite – who is The Master of the Long Grasses?’
Before she had time to answer, we heard the distinct, sharp call of a heron, which, having stood silently on the other side of the pool, now took off grandly into the air.
“That was The Master’s Envoy,” she said, biting her lip. “The heron is flying off now to inform him of our imminent arrival. We must be off. We had better not disappoint him.”
I took this as an indication that our question and answer session was over. But as we were journeying down a perfect path between the long grasses, with a silent rustle of her white robes, she said:
“It is advisable that you keep thinking to a minimum as we travel through these long grasses.”
“I’m sure that advice is generally applicable to most things,” I concurred, “but why here in particular?”
The Dragon Queen looked like she was struggling to answer this, but finally she got it.
“The consciousness of these grasses is, ugh, very sensitive, if that’s the right human expression. In the same way that someone lightly touching the hair on your arm can send shivers all through your body, or the millions of nerve fibres that all contribute to the joyous delicacy of the clitoris, these grasses could be said to possess a similar refinement in terms of their sensitivity.”
“What would happen if I thought too much?” I asked, feeling curious.
“It’s not so much a matter of ‘thinking too much’ so much as what you think about.”
“So what is it that I shouldn’t be thinking about?”And concerned that this might exasperate her, I added, “Just so that I know not to think about it.”
“If I told you what not to think about, it would happen immediately..”
“What would immediately happen?”
“The thing that we don’t want to happen.”
“Again, if I told you, it would immediately happen. So it is best not to talk about it. Quiet your mind, and centre your awareness. I can hear The Master of the Long Grasses pouring a cup of tea for as we move. So we must hurry, or else it will be cold when we get there. Which would be a considerable blow to our progress. So, hurry, hurry!”
With that admonition, she unleashed the full, glorious flowing dragon tail of her underparts, and, straddling my legs around it, we travelled at enormous speeds, through the whirling long grasses.
And, if you want to know what happened once they met The Master of the Long Grasses, you will have to wait for the next chapter!
Master of the long grasses
Married to the wind
Do you see the stray bullets
That the breeze carries?
Care-free and pliable
Riding on Nepalese Music
Like a wind-blown blossom
Starting rock concerts on lakes
Sitting on logs
Sailing rafts of bamboo
The second master is a mountain
He has no name
He is the ‘face’ in ‘Rock Face’
Grimacing against time
With features woven from placid boulders
He casts a wry smile
From time to time
Flashing shattered teeth of Chrysacola
That would not hesitate to chew up
Any unwary traveler
Who failed to show their respects
His personage possesses all the awesomeness
of Obscurity Lightening
His breathe is the strange halitosis
Which perfumes all ages
Every few Millennia
He raises a wry eyebrow of stone
Which he slowly lowers again
To the crumbling of civilizations
But even with all this power
Is he is still bitter
That after all this time
No one has ever offered him
A breath mint
Or a glass of water
This is an exercise taken from the Chi Kung Cannon, but it can be practiced by anyone interested in energy work, who wishes to attain a closer relationship with nature.
Firstly, you need a tree, preferably one that is large, strong, vibrant, and in an isolated, naturalistic environment, where you do not have to worry about being interrupted by strangers. For those who are particularly interested in cultivating vitality and longevity, a very old, but still living tree, is ideal. These are generally typified by their enormous height and prodigious girth, often possessing a hollow trunk, and an accumulation of warty, twisted growths known as ‘burrs’. Though, so long as you have access to a healthy, living tree, don’t worry too much about that at this stage.
Once you have selected a tree, stand in front of it, with your body erect and relaxed, feet shoulder width apart, and your knees slightly bent. Place your hand onto the tree, relax, and just take a few moments to be with the tree, clearing your mind, and becoming one with the present. Then, when you feel you are ready to begin, close your eyes, or keep your gaze firmly fixed in front of you.
Take a long, deep, gentle breath inward, and, as you inhale, visualize vital energy being drawn in through your palms and through the crown of your head, and, retaining the breath briefly once you’ve reached maximum capacity, bring it to centre in the energetic chamber of your heart. Then, as you exhale slowly, smoothly, and gently, push this ball of energy down your abdomen, pelvis, down your legs, and into the ground, visualizing roots sinking deep into the energetic belly of the earth as you do so, nourishing you with its life-engendering soil, drawing nutrients, moisture, and energy back up into you.
Repeat this sequence as many times as you wish. I often like to intensify the visualization, by imagining myself as a tree spirit, with my skin made of bark, my limbs made of branches, and my hair whorled out of leaves and vines; though you can tailor it anyway that you feel deepens your sense of connection.
According to the theory of the five elements of Chinese Traditional Medicine and Taoism, as trees are symbolic of the wind/wood element, this is exercise is good for your liver and eye chi, helping to infuse you with a lively, gentle, interpenetrating, and care-free spirit. It can also to unify you with the other four elements, grounding yourself in the soil of Earth; nourishing yourself on the Metal minerals within; drawing up the moisture of Water with your roots; and connecting you with the sun in the sky which imbues you with the Fire energy both plants, animals, and humans need to live and photosynthesize.
Once you have finished, thank the tree for sharing its energy with you, and treat all life with reverence. It is good to reflect on the many virtues of the tree. As Lao Tzu said in the Tao Te Ching:
Well planted – Never Uprooted
Well embraced – Never lost
I hope you enjoy this exercise, and I’d love to hear about whatever results you experience!