Shiva is the watcher, the sole witness to this play of energy that is this universe, and beyond. But we cannot watch Shiva in his formless – pure nature, the reason for this lies in an esoteric law of nature. A law deeply rooted in Sankhya philosophy. It’s that the observer and the observed are always different. The eye can see everything except itself. The camera will record everything else except it cannot be in the frame. The mind observers all forms, yet the mind cannot detect itself. We just know there is a mind and its not the brain. Brain is a machine, a superfast computer, mind is much more. Thus, the observer and the observed has to be different. And shiva is the ultimate eye, the only one eye that sees through a zillion eyes and is the one consciousness that observes everything. How can we observe the consciousness then, thus we cannot observe shiva. Thus we cannot “detect” or “observe” or “discover” shiva, there can be only one thing that we can do – Become Shiva. Realise the observer within you that watches through you, and become one with it. This oneness with either Shiva or Shakti, based on the Shiva or Shakta tradition respectively, is the base of all Tantra. This is also the the meaning of the great mantra Shiv-O-Ham – I am Shiva.
Following are the 7 esoteric steps to realise the Shiva State:
- Be free of Judgement – It is amazing that humans of every trait worship shiva. The transsexuals worship only shiva as he is ardhanarsihswara( half man – half woman form), the holiest people worship shiva, the most evil people too worship shiva. Shiva accepts all. Shiva gave us Tantra and Aghora. Tantra says, you cannot change man unless you give him authentic techniques with which to change. Just by preaching nothing is changed. Tantra is amoral. It doesn’t ask you who you are. Your being a human is enough. Wherever you are, whatsoever you are, you are accepted. Shiva is the God of Aghoris – Aghor word has root as a-ghora (without mixing), in its purity. This is why Shiva is called Digambar(meaning naked) with no veil of covering. Mahavira of Jainism was digambar as well. Aghoras are digambars too. They also don’t discriminate. When it comes to food, human flesh to them is as pure or impure as a potato. These are extreme practises to realise this one philosophy that “everything, including nothing, is one” and thus we will realise ourselves when we realise this. We can realise this by dropping judgemental attitude towards anyone we meet today. You will see you connect with that person through the heart and not through intellect.
- Free yourself of all guilt – Embrace yourself. You are not this body, whatever you gain or lose with this body will all end. In the end nothing will matter. This is why the world is called leela. Just be the watcher like shiva and you will never be born again, will never die. This is Mukti.This is also one of the deepest meditations of Shiva. To see the world as merely a play and nothing more. Don’t attach it any more importance. And one can be become free this very moment.
- Total acceptance – Of everything that is happening around you. What stresses us more is not a misfortune but our whims on what could have been done, or said differently and things would have been different. But the past doesn’t exist anymore. Accept who you are, what you are right now, only from there can you journey start. Know that this could not have happened any other way. Know that everything that has happened in your life knowingly or unknowingly is you doing. There is no God sitting in the sky who sees that if you have done enough lip service to him he will treat you differently. If God can also be bribed, then there is nothing sacroscant. Know this and embrace everything around you. This is also the core of Tantra. This is why Tantra is feminine, it is acceptance and surrender. Tantra says don’t fight your weaknesses, just know yourself. Next time you indulge be increasingly aware of what is happening, do it with heightened awareness, and the more aware you are the more it will satisfy you, the sooner you will get out of it. Then there is no possibility of the ego. If one is angry, tantra won’t say being angry is bad. Tantra will say be angry wholeheartedly, but be aware. Tantra is not against anger, tantra is only against our ignorance, our spiritual sleepiness, Be aware, and be angry. And this is the power of awareness, of meditation – that if you are aware anger is transformed; it becomes compassion. So tantra says anger is not your enemy; it is compassion in seed form. The same anger, the same energy, will become compassion. The more you try to leave it, the more attractive it becomes. The more you want to negate it, the more you feel invited. Thus accept it in totality.
- Embrace your feminine side – The way of tantra is feminine. Shiva is ardhanarishwara, this has nothing to do with man and woman, its the male and female energy – the yin and yang. Every human is a combination of both, with one of the two natures being the predominant.
Be Fearless: Become the Bhairava – Bhairava is the fearsome form of shiva. Why fearsome? Well, when everything is shiva who else will be the fearsome? Bhairava is beyond, and beyond all fears, beyond the intellect, is the abode of Shiva
Realise yourself through silence – Shiva is shoonya too; he is nothingness, the abyss. Become silent – Both outside and inside. Stop the mental chatter. Our brain uses 20% of our energy. Where does this energy go? This energy is getting wasted on thoughts. On an average we get 40,ooo thoughts a day, they exhaust our energy and our brain. Stop this mental chatter and you will become a dynamo of energy. This is possible when you truly believe you are not just the body, neither the intellect which is merely an extension of the body. Once you realise this, all you need to do to stop the chatter is to tell the mind to stop and it will follow the instructions. This is the basis of Yoga. No mind; this is the state of Bhairava.
- Know you are Shiva – Don’t think, just know. Shiva doesn’t speak philosophy, he just gives you the technique, Tantra. If you are repeating that you are shiva every time, the idea that you are not shiva will also be repeated in a small corner of your mind. Thus even if you are repeating that you are shiva, you are still tied to the idea that maybe you are not shiva right now, that’s why the need for all these mantras and repetitions. Drop the repeating also after a sometime. Just know.
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Wish you all a very happy Shivratri! Om Namah Shivaay!