You will meet the Gnana-Guru when you have got over the thirty-six tattvas. He will let you enjoy Sivananda. He defies description, and we can only content ourselves with stating that he himself is Siva. Those who follow the guidance of the Guru will live in the heavenly abode.
In the Pranava (Om, the articulate equivalent of the primal Sound), God enlightens the soul about what is seen and what is hidden. Lift the veil dividing the instrument of intelligence from the object of intelligence and enter into Pranava Samadhi. You will see the Light that is God. All the lights emanate from Him, and it is into Him that they finally dissolve.
The Vedas and the Agamas are contained in the fifty letters of the alphabet. And the sounds of these letters spring from the Pranavam, namely, Om. Namasivaya (Na-ma-si-va-ya) is the Mula Panchakkara which should be pondered over daily, morning and evening; it should also be recited. It is well that it is learnt through a Guru.
The five letters in Sivayanama (Si-va-yana-ma) signify respectively Siva, Sakthi, Jeeva, Mala and Maya. When the last two letters “na” and “ma” signifying respectively Mala and Maya are removed, the remaining three letters Si-va-ya signify the state when the soul is freed from Mala and Maya. “Sivaya”, therefore, is the Mantra which points to the position when the soul is rid of its impurities and ignorance. When the soul signified by “ya” loses itself in Siva and Sakthi, there remain only Siva (Si-va) signifying Siva and Sakthi. The soul has now ceased to exist as a separate entity, and has coalesced with Siva and Sakthi. Keep your mind fixed on Siva and recite Siva, Siva, and so on and on. You will find, by so doing, that your mastery over breath regulation is progressively increased. You will acquire clarity of thought and purity of mind and attain God’s grace.
Recite the Panchakkara, Sivayanama, and secure mental harmony and fearlessness. Then recite Sivaya-Siva-Siva, and divine joy is yours. Do not forget that all your knowledge of the Vedas and the Agamas reaches its fruition in the single letter “Si”. If you keep on probing into this truth, your soul will achieve liberation.
Siva exists in all things, and we see His dancing everywhere. Dancing is His play. This divine dance is of five kinds: Sivananda-kuthu, Sundara-kuthu, Porpathi-kuthu, Thillai-kuthu and Arputha-kuthu.
Sivananda-kuthu is the dance of Siva when, united to Sakthi, He dances in boundless space, far beyond the frontiers of Gnana. When this dance takes place, the world and the elements and the celestial music, the Vedas and the Agamas and everything else, all these dance with Him. Out of this dance emerge His fivefold junctions.
Sundara-kuthu is the dancing of mercy on the top of Sadasivam in the presence of Sakthi. (This cosmic dance is seen in this world in the forest of Devadaru, in Chidambaram and Tiruvalangadu.) It takes on eight variations Kodukotti, Pandurangam, Kabala-kuthu. Ozhinatanam, mun-thandavam, Anavarata-tandavam and Ananda-tandavarn. All the worlds come into being when this dance begins, and are dissolved when it conies to an end.
In Porpathi-kuthu, Siva dances with five heads and in three stages, —first, when He assumes a form, the next when He is formless. and the third when He is formless though possessing a form. This dance takes place separately on each of the five elements. Those who witness it experience certain physical sensations such as moaning, stumbling and absent—mindedness.
Thillai-kuthu is His cosmic dance as Paranjoti with Sakthi as Tiruvambalam. Divine joy surges over when He dances thus, facing the South; and, along with him, dance the fire in His hand, His matted hair, the crescent moon over it, and this and all other worlds. (Tirumular: “Following the guidance of my Guru, I saw this dance taking place in my soul; I saw His dancing feet and the bells ;I heard the musical notes of His anklets.”)
When Siva dances the Arputha-kuthu, He has no form whatsoever, and His consort also is mingled into Him as Tripurai. This dance is beyond the comprehension of intelligence, and can be viewed only by those who have cast off Maya and Ma-maya. His consort Umayal, who is the personification of eternal bliss, first separates Herself from Him during this dance and then coalesces with Him. The visualization here is that of Siva dancing before His consort, wearing on His body fire, drum, beads, pasa, ankusa, spear, skull etc., representing the meaning of the five letters of the Panchakkara, namely, Si-va-ya-na-ma.
Siva in all His dancing forms is known as Nataraja. The Nataraja form depicts the following: the drum, creation; the fire in the hand, destruction or dissolution; the raised hand, preservation or sustentation; the raised leg, Anugraha or bestowal of grace.
When God is worshipped as the Pranava, Om, the body is Chitakasam: this world and all other worlds are Purakasam: Ahakasam is Sivagnanam: the great light is Sivakasam. The summum - bonum of witnessing the dances of Siva is to see His form in space. God as Truth will manifest Himself when one attains tattva-Gnana. (Tirumular: I was wandering in the wilderness under the erroneous impression that “I” and “Siva” were different entities. I could not see Him as long as this impression lasted. It is from Him that “I” arises, and when I got to know this truth, the “I” slipped away “.)
SATYA - GNANANANDA:
When the effects of twofold Karma are dissipated by experiencing pain and pleasure, when the soul regards pain and pleasure with equanimity, neither fearing the evil effects of evil deeds nor desiring the good effects of good deeds, it enjoys Satya - Gnanananda. Those who have cut down all the ties, those who have seen that which remains inaccessible to all the religions of the world and stand under His light, get Sorupa-Udayam. Such men are affected by neither pain nor pleasure, and never once deviate from the happy path shown by Him. What does it matter to them if the skies fall down or if there is a deluge? They are mingled into Siva, and, therefore, they need neither entry nor exit. They have no existence other than that of Siva. When soul and Siva are thus mingled into one, Para-Mukthi is attained.
A TALK FROM THE VOID:
Six streets. The first lane that cuts into them has four palmyra trees. There is a ladder which is difficult to climb. However, I used this ladder and climbed up. From the top of the trees, I saw the seven seas. (Exp. Six streets_ Aradhara; the first lane Muladhara; four palmyra trees -the lotus in the Muladhara with four petals; ladder- Sushumna; seven seas - seven groups of living beings.
I planted brinjal seeds, but a sour species sprouted up. I dug into the sand and pumpkins came out. The astonished gardeners bowed to me hurriedly and ran away. In the end, however, these plants grew banana fruits. (Exp. Brinjal seed—- Yogas; sour species---Vairagya (unswerving determination); dug into the sand --probed into the eternal verities; pumpkin -Siva; gardeners- sense organs; banana fruits- liberation of the soul.)
There is a farm where grows a cow born of five seeds. No one realises the purity of this field. One can enter it only if one is blessed with God’s grace. (Exp. Five seeds—five sense organs; cow—soul; field-—Tirodhana Mala.)
Three ploughs and three acres of land. Fools! Why do they not put up the bunds, bend the tongue, thrust the point deep, and plough the central field? What folly is it that they should plough the barren field with their legs tied to chains? (Three ploughs—the flow of breath through Ida and Pingala and in the Sushumna: three acres of land—the triangular Chakra or Centre in the Muladhara; put up the bands--Pranayama or breath regulation; bend the tongue—block the throat; central field— Kundalini Yoga; tied to chains--- entangled in worldly attractions.)
Seven wells and two water-bailers. The elder brother lifts the water, while the younger brother diverts it into the field. If water does not flow into the plot where seedlings grow and is thus wasted, it resembles the hen of a public prostitute. (Exp. Seven wells - Aradhara and the Amrit (Divine Nectar) in the Sahasrara; two water-bailers- Ida and Pingala; water—Amrit: plot where seedlings grow—Sushumna; the hen of a public prostitute-- a thing which is not under the effective control of a single person.)
Twenty-four cows in the pen. A second herd of twelve cows in two groups of seven and five. One can get a big pot of milk from a single cow in the second herd. But the Parppan gets a cow only from out of the twenty-four in the pen. (Twenty-four cows in the pen—twenty four Anma-Tattvas; the seven cows in the second herd—the seven kinds of Vidya-tattvas; the five cows in the second herd— Siva-Tattvas; Parppan— soul.)
The goldsmith’s house has a wooden loft, and in it a red bud has blossomed. There is a circle in it which contains a truth. Amrit springs from this circle. The goldsmith is very careful in retaining the Amrit. (Exp. Wooden loft—- skull; red bud— cell; circle --- Pranava a truth--Panchakkara; Amrit Sivananda.)
The soil in the seed-plot is eroding. The field is flooded. If, however, ploughing is done with a good cow and the seed-plot is sown with Vellari seeds, a bumper growth of seedlings can be had. (Seed-plot—human body; the flooded field—-- mind; good cow --Prana or breath; Vellari seed—Bindu-dhyana; bumper growth of seedlings—-moksha or liberation of the soul.)
They have done manuring, ploughing and sowing. They scratch the ground so as to enable the seedlings to sprout. And then they cut the crops and harvest the paddy What a waste of labour when they can eat cooked rice straight from the crops! (Manuring -Suddha - Vasana; ploughing- undergoing distress; seed—Mona; scratch the ground— make an effort; seedling— the beginning of Mona; to bring out- to control the Vishukthi; cooked rice — Amrit; paddy-the fruit of Kameeyam.)
They plough the salt-marsh in vain. Even if some seedlings manage to come out, they will soon wither away. How is it that they are not aware of their useless effort? (Saltmarsh — trivial matter; seedling --effort.)
A tent with a fox-hole in it. In this tent, put Pasa into the fire, burn it, and then perform tapas for a very long time. It you do so, a woman will appear. With her blessings, you can live happily in the tent. (Fox-hole--mind; tent-body; fire -Siva; woman—Sakthinipatham.)
One day it rained on the hill. Deer herds pranced out. A fruit fell down from a bunch. The blacksmith was heating iron in his foundry, and poured Amrit on the iron when it became red-hot. (Hill- Meru; rain — the flow of Amrit; deer — soul; fruit — the soul’s experience; blacksmith — Siva; foundry — His grace; Amrit — Sakthinipatham.)
There are five mlich-cows in the Parppan’s house. No shepherd for grazing them. They are let loose and are running about madly as they please. But when their madness abates, they are quiet, and give plenty of milk. (Parppan --soul; house—body; five mlich-cows— Panchapranan; milk—Sivananda.)
Five forest-cows, thirteen lions, two themas and nine thippilis. If they are caught, the enemies in the mind cannot grow more powerful, and then ways can be found to subdue them. (Five forest-cows Panchapranan; thirteen lions—five Gnanendriyas plus five Karmendriyas plus Buddhi, Siddhi and Ahankara: two themas—to view pain and pleasure with equanimity; nine thippilis — Sravaram. Kirtanam, Smaranam, Sevai, Archana, Adimai, Vandhanam, Sakyamand Atma-nivedhanam enemies Kama - krotha - lopa - moha - madha -matsaryas; way—--vairagya.)
A small girl interpreted correctly the meaning of what is written in an unwritten book even as the bee which is not hatched from egg drinks honey from a flower that has not come out of any bud. (Unwritten book -Veda; a small girl—Chit-Sakthi; a flower that has not come out of any bud—Jeeva; honey—Ananda; the bee that is not hatched from egg— the Jeeva afflicted with cares.)
It is a false exit; the entry is a false seed. Those five men ate fruits from a blackcherry, and lived on the top of the roof. (False exit— Resaka: false seed—Puraka; blackcherry-- body; fruits—the fruits of Karma or Iruvinai; five men— Gnanendriyas; roof—body.)
A margosa tree in a bamboo bush, and embracing the margosa is a palmyra tree. Under the palmyra lives a snake. None is bold enough to drive the snake and eat the margosa fruit. The margosa tree, therefore, does not benefit anyone. (Bamboo bush— mind; margosa tree— Siva; palmyra tree—Tirodhana Sakthi; snake— ignorance; does not benefit anyone—Sivananda is not attained.)
In the forest, there are ten big tigers and fifteen elephants. Ten man are playing there. Also there are five skilled men, besides three groups of three, five and six. What a strange company! (Ten big tigers—Dasanadi; fifteen elephants— five elements plus five Tanmatras plue five Karmendriyas; five skilled men-- five Gnanendriyas; three men—three Gunas; five men—five Avasthas; six men- six Vigaras.)
There are two rams in the village. They belong to a shepherd. If only he could press them together, they will become a single ram. (Village—body; two rams—Resaka and Puraka; shepherd—jeeva; a single ram—Kumbaka.)
There are many who think the most of clothing, food, oil, ornaments, waist-string, bangles etc. Such men fall down into the deserted well, like the cloth blown by winds from the hill-top.
They sit not beside the lily-pond and eat the sumptuous food laid on the ground. Instead, they are standing silently with drawn faces.
The sun peeps through the cracks in the eastern sky, and the birds are singing. He is still embracing her, unwilling to come out of the trance. (Exp. Only those who can rise above the weakness of the flesh and grasp Siva can enjoy His bliss.)
Those in the state of Mona-Samadhi can see the entire universe within themselves without moving an inch. They never experience pain, for they are merged in Siva.
Ananda should be felt by the mind; it cannot be seen by the eyes. A woman cannot explain the joy she shared with her husband to her daughter. The sweetness of a fruit can only be enjoyed by eating it. Only a husband knows the charms of his wife. (Tirumular: “Therefore, I shunned all disquieting thoughts, sat down and searched within me calmly. I have bound myself to His feet. Siva can be comprehended only by those in whose mind the waves have ceased to beat. Mind as an instrument becomes superfluous to those who have reached His feet. They commit no errors; they do not smell; their sense organs are quiescent; they are sans bias of any kind. The Supreme Being is everything. I am one with Him. I do not need any system of metaphysics. I am not afraid of anybody. I am treading the correct path with dignity. I have consumed the fruit of Namasivaya. I am still enjoying its sweetness. The three of us, my Father, Mother and I have become one entity. If the God of Death dares to approach me, I shall kill him with the sword of Gnana. But if Siva appears, I shall go with Him.
Siva removed the disharmony in me. He freed me of my physical limitations and took me under His protection. When I experienced Him, it was like drinking honey and sugarcane juice. But I drank again, and found that the honey and sugarcane juice had turned sour! And then my mind closed down. My tapas ended. I ended everything, and attained the state where the mind ceases to work and the mouth closes in silence.