The Ego is Not Your Amigo – Part 2 of 2

From Mira Prabhu, the mystic writer living on the holy mountain of Arunachala.

mira prabhu

Harish Johari Harish Johari

I first began to consciously pursue the destruction of my own troublesome ego when I lived in hectic Manhattan. At the time, I had just begun to plot a novel based on eastern philosophy (Whip of the Wild God: A Novel of Tantra in Ancient India), and was engrossed in learning everything I could about Tantra and mysticism.

In the process, I met folks who tended to interpret Tantra mainly as a license to enjoy indiscriminate sex. My view was different: mainly from delving into the treasure trove of eastern philosophy at the New York Public Library, I had discovered that, etymologically speaking, the word Tantra derives from two Sanskrit words: tanoti and trayati—meaning: the explosion of consciousness. How one performs this magic is up to the individual; while couple-hood can certainly become a means of liberation, celibate tantrics often evolve fastersimply because…

View original post 638 more words

AHAM (I AM) Is The Essence Of Mantras: By Sri Venkata Sriram

Edtior’s Note: The following post appeared in the Advaitin list on Yahoo Groups and is reprinted with the permission of the author, Sri Venkata Sriram. In this article Venkat-Ji speaks about the idea of AHAM as the essence of Mantras, Vedas, and Upanishads. AHAM translated from Sanskrit means, “ME” or “I AM” and refers to the principle of I-NESS that is inherent in the existence of all beings as it is their core. Sri Bhagavan Ramana’s teaching involving the Inquiry, “Who Am I?” is essentially a meditation on AHAM, which in the Advaitic approach leads to Self-Realization. I have made only minor edits in the original version. Please bring to my attention any errors and these will be corrected right away.

AHAM (I AM) Is The Essence Of Mantras

It is to be noted that *who am I* is not a *intellectual* enquiry to be pursued.  It is the upasana of *Aham* which is the upasana of Vak – the Great Goddess of Speech which is described in Vedas as Vak / Tripurasundari.

According to legend, the 14 Maheshwara Sutras were revealed to Panini, Vyaghrapada, Upamanyu and other sages by Shiva. Panini then composed his grammar called Ashtadhyayi which is based on the 14 Sutras that were revealed during the Cosmic Dance of Shiva. They are also called the Maheshvara Sutras. At the end of the Shiva’s Cosmic Dance, he sounded his Damaruka 14 times. And from these 14 Sounds of Damaruka, evolved 14 Sutras. These 14 sutras encompass the phonetics of the Sanskrit language.

The first 4 sutras cover all the vowels.  They are :

1) a i u n
2) r l k
3) e o n
4) ai au ch.

Omit the last letter of the 4 sutras and they are a, i, u, r, l, e, o, ai, au. The entire 16 vowels from A to AHA have emanated from these letters.

The Last 10 sutras include all the consonants. They are :

5) h y v r t
6) l n
7) n m n n n m
8.) jh bh n
9) gh dh dh s
10) j b g d d s
11) kh ph ch th th ca t t v
12) k p y
13) s s s r;
14. h l.

Omit the last letter of these 10 sutras, they become entire 34 consonants ie., from K to HA. The SRICHAKRA is constructed keeping in view these entire set of 14 sutras.  Ashtadhyayi divides these 14 formulae into 43 letters which become the 43 Angles of Sriyantra.

The entire Matrikas (letters) ie., 16 vowels and 34 consonants have evolved from these 14 Maheshwara Sutras.

The 16 Vowels and 34 Consonants have become 50 Matrikas of Letters.. They are the Saktha Pitas of Sridevi.  Every Matrika has a distinct Power and Seat of Origin in our Body. These Matrikas are presided by a distinct and corresponding Devis that govern that particular seat of origin (Pita) in our Body. These Cosmic Powers that preside over each Matrika is invoked during the Antarmatrika and Bahir Matrika Nyasas.

It is to be noted that the Kamakala Akshara is derived from these 14 sutras. This *AHAM* is the essence of all the Mantras, Vedas, Upanishads as these fall in between A (WHICH IS 1ST VOWEL) AND H (WHICH IS THE LAST CONSONANT). From the first sutra, A is taken and from the last Sutra H is taken. Bindu is added and it becomes AHAM.

This is the AHAM swarupa or the I-NESS of Maheswara which is of the form of CHIT. It is from this AHAM of the Siva, the entire Cosmos in the form of Matrikas have evolved. This AHAM is the KAMAKALA. The entire vowels and consonants fall in between this A and H.

The Tantric script encodes this principle of AHAM and depicts as a INVERTED TRIANGLE which is a representation of Triputi or Triad in the form of External Object perceived, Knowledge or Perception, Observer or Perceiver otherwise called Jnatr-Jnana-Jneya.

Veda & Tantra paves the way for the piercing of this Triad which is called TRIPUTI-BHEDANA. And the methodology employed is *AHAMGRAHOPASANA* through Sagunopasana.

When Vashishta Ganapati Muni pleaded for guidance in sadhana, Bhagavan Ramana asked the Muni to enquire into the Source of the Panchakshari Mantra (NAMA SIVAYA) which is invariably collection of 5 letters in the form of Speech.

The root of all mantras in the form of Speech is *A-HA-Bindu*.  A is the 1st vowel; Ha is the Last Consonant; M-the Bindu; which is AHAM. This is what is the essence of VAK Sukta in Rg Veda which starts with *Aham rudrebhir vasubhischarami……….*.

Bhagavan Ramana Maharishi wants us to catch hold of this AHAM as it is the source of Speech and which shines in the cave of our heart. (vide ref: Ramana Gita).

The speech has 4 stages of evolution whose order of evolution is : 1) Para 2) Pashyanti 3) madhyama 4) Vaikhari.  Vaikhari is the Articular Sound what we hear.  The source of this Articulate Sound is Para which originates from Heart Cave where throbs our consciousness in the form of *AHAM* (hridaya kuhara madhye aham aham iti sphurantam…).  It is this throb or Antah sphurana, Bhagavan urges us to realise.  It is this *Aham throb* or *Antah-sphurana* which is *Brahma*.  Hence, Bhagavan Ramana says in ECSTASY *Aham* *Brahma* *Asmi*.

It is verily this *I* which shines in the heart cave as *Aham* which Bhagavn says is Brahman.

Now, what does Acharya Sankara say about the Upasana of *Aham*, let us see.

Acharya Sankara gives us a wonderful hymn for meditation, contemplation and reflection which is called *Dakshinamurthy Stotram* (DS).  Acharya has divided the entire hymn into 3 principles  : Jiva, Jagat & Ishwara. Later, he gives a clue for the Upasana which is quite *mandatory*  for those who are into the upasana of  the *aham* principle. What exactly is this *aham*, is wonderfully given in the sloka *bAlyAdiShvapi…….AHAM iti antahsphurantam sadA….* of DS.

Now, how should we enquire into the root of this *aham* or *I-ness*? Acharya has hinted in the subsequent sloka and the type of upasana to be undertaken. It is the *ahamgrahopasana* along with Sagunopasana which is suggested here.  When this upasana reaches the state of culmination, it is the realisation in *ECSTASY* that this *aham* or *antah-sphuraNa* is Brahman which is the essence of Mahavakya *aham brahmasmi*.

Mahavakyas are the *GREAT UTTERANCES IN ECSTASY* by our vedic seers.

Even in deep reflection and sadhana, when the upasaka reaches the highest pinnacle of spiritual illumination, both the terms *aham* and *brahma* drops off and what remains is ASMI.  And this state is wonderfully explained in the Rg veda in  the *Hymn of Creation or *Nasadiya Sukta*.


Acharya Sankara also hints in his Sutra Bhashya about the sagunopasana..  He says:

“apratyAkhyAyaina kAryaprapancham, PARINAMAPRAKRRIYAM CHA shrayati SAGUNESHuPASANESHUP AYOKSHYA te iti”.

Also, in the 1st adhyaya for the sutra “tad adhInatvA darthavat”, Acharya Sankara explains the principle of Sakti to be the upAdana kAraNa for paramEshwara in the Creation. Acharya Sankara emphatically says that it is the Parinamavada to be adopted to achieve the Sagunopasana Siddhi and not for kArya-prapancha (jagat) siddhi.

Acharya Sankara in his sutra bhashya says that parinamavada (theory of transformaton) can be adopted for the purpose of saguna upasana which is the upasana of maya-sabala brahman where the substratum is Brahman only. When the upasana is ripe, and upon the dawn of right knowledge, the “reality” which the “ignorant” people perceive WOULD BECOME an “illusion”.

So, what i conclude is that Bhagavan Ramana’s Teaching is not new and is not an *Intellectual Enquiry*. It is verily the *Veda Vidya* handed down to us. Bhagavan embodies in himself the *Spirit of Vedic Seer*.  Bhagavan’s teaching is the upasana of Vak.

Bhagavan was verily the form of Dakshinamurthy who taught the Upasana of Vak in the form of *Silence*. It is this *silence* which is called Para-vak. It is this Para-Vak which sports in the deep chasms of our heart as *I* or *Aham*.

The vedas and Tantra declare this Para-Vak as Tripurasundari – which is the Great Triangle in Sriyantra and the substratum of this Para-Vak is the Absolute Principle in the Form of Shiva which is depicted as Circle or Bindu in Sriyantra.

Sriyantra is the diagrammatic representation of AHAM and Srividya is the Upasana of Vak in the form of *Ahamgrahopasana*.  Hence, to evolve a method for this *ahamgrahopasana*, Srividya Tantra came into being.

It is interesting to note that Bhagavan Ramana himself did the prana pratishta of Sriyantra at the samadhi of His mother.

tamai shri gurumurtaye namah idam shri dakshinamurthaye.

with regards,

What Is Tantra? By Sri S.N. Sastri

Note from the Editor:  The following article appeared last year on the Advaitin list at Yahoo groups and was written by Sri S.N. Sastri, one of the moderators of the Advaitin list. It appears here with very minor edits. Sastri-ji is a brilliant and respected scholar of many schools within Hinduism with a special interest, focus, and expertise on Advaita-Vedanta. Some biographical information and the names of books Sastri-ji has written is given at the end of the article.

The Path of Tantra

There has been a lot of ill-informed criticism of the Tantra with the result that it has been very much misunderstood.

Those who wish to know what Tantra really is, are advised to study the works of Sir John Woodroffe (also known as Arthur Avalon) on this subject.

Sri John Woodroffe was a Judge of the Calcutta High Court during the British rule in India. He made a thorough study of Tantra and came to be accepted as an authority on the subject by even traditional Indian Pandits.

Here are some points from his Introduction of the work entitled “Principles of Tantra”.

In India, philosophy and religion are mingled in a way which the West has not known since the age when philosophy was held to be Ancilla Theologiae.

We have in the Tantra the recognition of the fine principle that this doctrine and its expression in ritual are for all, whatever be their race, caste or sex.

The Hindu Shudras  (so called untouchable caste) and woman are under none of the Vaidik bans in the Tantric approach to spirituality.

The Tantra calls woman ‘Shakti’.  Shakti is the Goddess. To ill-treat a Shakti is a crime. On this ground the mahAnirvANa Tantra forbids sati (the self-immolation of the wife in the funeral pyre of her husband). It says:” O kuleshAnI, a wife should not be burnt with her dead husband. Every woman is Thy image. That woman who in her delusion ascends the funeral pyre of her lord shall go to hell”.   (Ch.X, verses 79-80).

A woman can be a Guru, and initiation by her achieves increased benefit.

The main subjects of Tantra are mantra and sAdhana in all its forms. The kulArNava Tantra says:  “For each yuga a suitable shAstra is given– in satyayuga shruti; in treta smRiti; in dvApara the purANas; in kali the Tantra.

Tantra has been said to exist in the Veda as the perfume exists in the flower. While the theoretical portion of the gAyatri tattva is contained in vedanta, the practical and ritualistic portion is in the Tantra.

If it be argued that the Tantra is of recent origin because it provides for the worship of shakti, then the same would apply to the purANas, mahAbhArata, and even the vedas and upanishads. In the veda there is the sarasvati sUkta, in the yajurveda the lakShmi sUkta and in the Rigveda the devi sUkta.

MAdhavAcharya, the commentator on the vedas, has, in dealing with the Patanjali darshana quoted passages from the Tantra shAstra with reference to the ten forms of samskAras prescribed therein. The bala and atibala mantras mentioned in rAmAyaNa, bAlakANDa, are tantrik and the mode of acquiring them is given in the  Tantra shAstra.

Just like the vedas, the Tantras have no author, but have emanated from the mouths of shiva and His consort pArvatI. Those which came from shiva are known as ‘Agama’ and those that came from pArvati are known as ‘nigama’.

The worship performed in temples is mainly Tantrik.

shruti is of two kinds— Vaidik and Tantrik.

Best wishes,


About the Author Sri S.N. Sastri

Shri S.N.Sastri is a former member of the Indian Revenue Service. He retired as Member, Central Board of Direct Taxes, Government of India.

He has authored the following books:–

1. Commentary in English on Narayaneeyam, a devotional work in Sanskrit by the devotee-poet Melpathur Narayana Bhattatiri who lived in Kerala in the 16th century A.D– Published by Central Chinmaya Mission Trust, Mumbai- 72.

Second Edition- Jan 2005. Pages 761. Price Rs. 160. Contains the slokas in Devanagari script,  word-by-word meaning, and detailed explanatory notes.  Available at all the centres of Chinmaya Mission all over the world.

2. Commentary in English on Satasloki of Sri Adi Sankaracharya– Published by the author. Price Rs. 80.

3. Commentary in English on Hastamalakiyam of Hastamalaka, one of the four disciples of Sri Adi Sankara– Published by the author. Price Rs. 25.

Books 2 and 3 can be had from Jayalakshmi Indological Book House, 6, Appar Swamy Koil Street, (opp. Sanskrit College), Mylapore, Chennai- 600 004. Tel: 24990539.

He has edited the English translation of a monumental commentary in Malayalam on Narayaneeyam, published by The Bhaktaranjini  Trust, Bangalore-94. Price Rs.800.

He has written articles on Vedantic topics which have been published in various journals.

Some of the articles written by him are posted on his website.

. These articles are written in simple language, avoiding all technical jargon. They can be easily understood even by persons who have not had any exposure to Vedanta.

Shri S.N.Sastri can be contacted at and at

Some Similarities between Jnana Yoga and Kundalini Yoga: by Vib “Vibri” Ribbon

Kundalini Yoga

Kundalini-Shakti is in traditional Indian spiritual sources described as the energy that propels man to liberation. Thus, awakening this energy in the body(mind) of the practitioner is central in some liberation teachings, most notably, the Kundalini Yoga systems and the Tantra Yoga systems. As the energy moves in the central channel in the body from its resting place and source in the Muladhara Chakra to the Sahasrara Chakra, and enlivens the passive element of the mind, liberation is said to ensue.

Continue reading