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Date Posted: 07:06
Subject: Re: Kriya subject
In reply to:
's message, "Re: Kriya subject" on 06:57
Of course there is a lot of references from Yoganandaji of Kecharimudra, even in the lessons. But nowhere we'll find a lesson on the techniques which help us to attain Kechari. I have all the four SRF Kriyas, and although we find a mention on Kechari in the second initiation, we are not taught to practice those higher Kriyas with kechari. If you contact SRF on Kechari they will advice you to roll your tongue back as far as you can and hold that position from 5-15 minutes, AFTER your Kriya practice.
Some months ago someone posted in the SRF Yogananda Message Board the message which I reproduce bellow. I would comment it, and even wrote my answer, but did not post it, lest I was "getting into the forbidden zone", as you said.
See bellow that message and my would-be reply:
ORIGINAL POST (from "Yogue"):
I “happened” to run into Brother Abedhananda this a.m., as sometimes occurs around the ranch on Tuesday mornings. As many here know, he has been a monk since 1956, was Tara Mata’s assistant for 12 years, and is a hatha yoga Master, plus he is a medical doctor (on the side). I asked him about the Khechari Mudra. Our conversation lasted about half an hour, so I will incorporate what I can recall now (I didn’t take notes), and perhaps I’ll edit this if I can recall anything more as the day progresses.
Brother stated that the Khechari Mudra is really a part of hatha yoga, not a part of Kriya, in that hatha yoga incorporates postures which support and ready the body for meditation. He stated that the Guru did teach some disciples this technique to practice prior to Kriya (in both east & west). He stated that it helps to withdraw the life force from the body into the medulla/sp. eye. Brother stated that Master specifically taught this to one of the original members of the SRF Board of Directors, but didn’t teach it to the others. This director wanted this technique incorporated into the Kriya Lessons (it is mentioned but not described), but the other Directors declined as they saw this as Master’s personal instruction to this devotee and a few others, and not his general guidance on Kriya. Brother stated it wasn’t part of Master's general initiation instructions on Kriya, as the other mudras were. Brother did say that Kriya does have many ramifications, that it was divided and simplified by Lahiri Mahasaya into steps. But Brother stressed that whichever Kriya one uses, without the blessing of a true Guru any technique is worthless, and I suppose that's what Master is saying in his guidance on this.
Brother said such hatha yoga techniques do not benefit everyone. He said if one is trying to force a pose, it really isn’t yoga – because yoga comes naturally. He stated that when one has performed Kriya properly and is deeply meditating in the breathless state, one’s tongue naturally raises up toward the spiritual eye – as the life energy is withdrawn into the medulla/spiritual eye. He stated that, in contrast, after eating the life energy is focused downward, toward the stomach. As I said, if and when I remember/learn more on this, I will happily share it.
Very well said, Yogue. I ask you all permission to add some personal thoughts on this relevant issue. (I should add, however, knowing some people in this board very well, that I am not telling anyone to practice Kriya with Kechari Mudra without Mother Center permission. Originally, in India, Kechari Mudra was a part of Kriya Yoga, since the first initiation. This a fact. But our divine Guru, a true God-realized Master, taught all the Kriyas without giving instruction in Kechari, except personally to some disciples. Fundamental in Kriya is that one should practice it as he was instructed to do it. This is the main point.)
1. Yes, Kechari Mudra is a hatha yoga technique, as Bro. Abedhananda said. But Maha Mudra and Jyoti (Yoni) Mudra also are hatha yoga techniques, mentioned in Hatha Yoga Pradipika and Gheranda Samhita. Babaji incorporated them into Kriya Yoga, and they are specially practiced coupled with the Kriya breath; practiced this way they are not just hatha yoga techniques anymore, but they become Kriya Yoga techniques. In Kriya, Kechari Mudra also can/should be practiced with Kriya pranayam. Master taught Kechari Mudra to Dr. Lewis (the “original director” mentioned by Bro. Abhedananda), telling him to practice Kriya Yoga with Kechari. To be able to get the tongue into Kechari, one first have to stretch the phrenum (the membrane under the tongue), so Lahiri Mahasaya included tongue-stretching excercises as a part of his Kriya initiation. Touching the tongue to the uvula is only the first stage of Kechari. After, the tongue must be placed inside the nasal cavity, behind the uvula. Once one can make the sounds with his tongue turned back, if he can hold the tongue inside the nasal cavity and still relax his throat enough so his concentration is on the spinal currents and not on the tension in the tongue, then it would be fine to do Kriya that way (under permission, of course). Only then, Lahiri Mahasaya would teach his disciples the higher Kriyas, which originally should be performed with Kechari Mudra. Of course, if Master taught Kriya Yoga without so much enphasis in Kechari, it is because Kechari is not an essential technique, although it maybe be very helpful for those who can/want/are permited to do it.
2. Yes, in samadhi the tongue automatically goes into Kechari Mudra (at least it turns up and back – see Nitin’s wonderful experience below. Thanks Nitin!). Also, in samadhi the body becomes motionless, and the eyes turn upwards. If we are taught to sit motionless, with eyes upturned, because these physical postures help us to give rise to the state of superconsciousnes, so it is logical to conclude that Kechari Mudra could also be practiced, for it definitely will help us to go into deep meditation, if we can do it deliberately.
3. Yes, essential to the techniques is the blessing of the Guru. If Master reccomends Kechari Mudra in his writings (Gita, SRF Lessons, Mejda, etc), so Kechari Mudra practice has his blessings already. (Did he not say that his blessings were implicit in his writings, mainly the Lessons?) One just must to learn the simple, easy exercises to stretch the phrenum. I’m happy at last to know that Kechari Mudra is not taught by SRF not because Master did not teach it (he did), but due to an organizational decision. For me – mind you please, FOR ME – it is sufficient Master’s own words in his K-14 lesson, that Kechari MUST BE PRACTICED REGULARLY.
4. And Yes! DEVOTION is the most important factor. Here is an very beautiful account by Master himself on a yogi he once met who, apparently, could perform Kechari (or a similar technique). It is from an East-West magazine article, published in the September-October 1927 issue (Vol. 2-6).
HAMID BEY, "MIRACLE MAN"—By Swami Yogananda
Hamid Bey is an Egyptian from the Soudan, famous land of sheiks. He was reared under an austere mystical training, and the feats he performs are a part of the religious rites of his sect.
Mr. Bey showed me that by touching anyone’s wrist he could divine his thoughts. Each thought has a certain vibration, and by contact with the pulse of the person thinking the thought, Mr. Bey receives the same vibration and consequently thinks the same thought. Later, he demonstrated to me his method of physical trance, in which he fell into my hands, breathless and almost lifeless. The stethoscope revealed that his heart-beat, at first fast, slowed down to an intermittent beat, and then got very slow.
Mr. Bey can remain underground, buried for twenty-four hours, sealed in a air-tight casket, and can hold a thousand pounds on his chest. He controls his pulse at will—its beats appeared and completely disappeared at his will. He also pierces his body with long needles without bloodshed. The marks almost instantaneously disappeared after the needles were withdrawn. He thrusts these needles into his throat, cheeks and tongue without pain. He can produce blood from one puncture and withhold blood from another. Most of these things he performed right in front of me. In the various cities where he visits he often gives demonstrations before gatherings of eminent physicians and surgeons. In New York City he submitted for burial for three hours. On this occasion his body was sealed in a casket and placed six feet underground. The doctors who were present admitted that they could not explain the feat other than by Hamid Bey’s declaration that by self-imposed catalepsy, he renders his body almost lifeless.
Passing needles thru his cheeks and certain other of Mr. Bey’s feats are performed, after long practice, BY MANIPULATING GLANDS OF THE THROAT and by pressing certain nerves on the head. THESE ARE VERY INTERESTING PHYSIOLOGICAL PHENOMENA SHOWING THAT MAN CAN CONTROL THE FUNCTIONS OF THE HEART AND ALL OTHER ORGANS OF INVOLUNTARY ACTION. THIS IS KNOWN TO HINDU YOGIS AND SWAMIS WHO PRACTICE YOGA, AS WELL AS TO MYSTICS OF OTHER SECTS.
OF COURSE, IT MUST BE REMEMBERED THAT WITHOUT THE LOVE OF GOD AND WITHOUT WISDOM, SUCH CONTROL AND FEATS ARE JUST PHYSIOLOGICAL JUGGLERY AND A DETRIMENT TO SPIRITUAL REALIZATION. BUT HAMID BEY LOVES GOD, AND HE TELLS ME HE LOVES HIM MORE AND MORE SINCE HE HEARD THE SONG, "O GOD BEAUTIFUL."
He has a good wife. "I often wake up in the night, sit upright, rebuke sleep away, and talk to Him," he told me. "At first my wife did not understand to whom I talked. But now she does, and we both love ‘God Beautiful.’ " O, how I love to hear him say that! I told him to tell everyone wherever he goes, that prayer without love of God is meaningless and that people should talk to God every night when no one is watching or listening. That is a sure way to know God easily. Otherwise, a thousand shows of prayer will fail to accomplish any spiritual result.
I TOLD MR. BEY TO PRODUCE TRANCE BY LOVE OF GOD, RATHER THAN MERELY BY GLANDULAR PRESSURE, AS RESULTS PRODUCED BY DEVOTION ARE SAFER AND GREATER. Generally, it takes another person to arouse Mr. Bey from his trance. But, in the conscious trance of devotion, or Yoga, one never loses consciousness but transcends the material consciousness and comes back to consciousness of matter at will again. That is the conscious communion with God the Yogoda aspires to teach.
Mr. Bey can put small animals and sometimes certain types of men into the cataleptic state. Medical science as well as metaphysical science should investigate the results and possibilities for usefulness of such phenomena.>
All the best,
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