(from the explanation to stanza 99 of Soundarya Lahari)
Lakshmidhara, taking this stanza as the penultimate one of the work, says that this stanza indicates the worshipper’s piercing through the six Chakra-s in order to reach the Sahasraaraa. In substantiation of this view, he proceeds thus:
- The Jivanmukta continues to function in the body out of sheer Vaasanaa, even after the removal of ignorance, even as the potter’s wheel continues to whirl after the pot has been brought into shape completely.
- The Bhajana indicated in the last line is of two kinds. (a) by the worshipping of the six Chakra-s and (b) by Dhaaranaa. As regards the former, the first two Chakra-s , being in a region of darkness, are unworthy of being worshipped. The other five Chakra-s , including the Sahasraaraa, alone are to be taken into account.
- Worshippers of the Manipura attain the liberation known as Saarsti , which consists in raising a city by the side of the Devi’s city and abiding there, ever engaged in her service.
- Worshippers of the Anaahataa attain the liberation of the Saalokyaa Salokyaa is residence in Devi’s city.
- Worshippers of the Visuddhi attain the liberation of the Saameepyaa Saameepyaa consists in ministering to the comforts of the Devi.
- Worshippers of the Aajnaa attain the liberation of the Saarupyaa Saarupyaa consists in attaining similarity of form with the Devi, which, however, being distinct and separate, is not Saayujyaa.
- The aforesaid four types of liberation are known as Gauna or accessory, for the reason that external torments alone are warded off in these types.
- Worshippers of the Sahasraaraa alone have the privilege of attaining liberation of the Saayujyaa type, wherein even internal torments vanish, and which is therefore the ideal type of perpetual liberation referred to in the last line of the stanza.
- After getting over all sorts of difficulties, the votary renders himself fit for attaining Saayujyaa. When Saayujyaa is reached, he merges into the conjoint forms of Siva and sakti. This is Kaivalya.
The six Chakra-s of the body and their identity with the six Chakra-s of the SriChakraa have already been dealt with : (they are reproduced below once again by NGS)
=========== (from explanation to stanza 9)
Thou art diverting Thyself, in secrecy with Thy Lord, in the thousand-petalled lotus, having pierced through the Earth situated in Mulaadhaara, the Water in the Manipuraa, the Fire abiding in the Svaadhishtaana, the Air in the Heart (Anaahataa), the Ether above (the Visudhhi), and Manas between the eyebrows (Aajnaa) and thus broken through the entire Kula path.
Thou – in the form of Tripurasundari of the macrocosm and the Kundalini of the microcosm
Thy Lord – the Siva of the macrocosm and the Jiva of the microcosm, bereft of Maayaa, illusion
the thousand-petalled lotus – which is no other than the upper Srichakraa, the Bindu of which represents the Siva and the Jiva,bereft of Maayaa, as the case may be. This is the final resort, the Nirvaanaa of the accomplished seeker, lying beyond the Kula path, the Sushumnaa Maargaa, which contains the six Chakra-s mentioned in the stanza, in the ascendin g order of subtlety, with the three granthi-s in their appropriate places. The Sahasraaraa is considered to be the inner Srichakraa to be meditated upon with all the fifty-one letters of the Samskrt alphabet. The view is taken by some that the Bindu has its position in the Bindu of the Chakraa and the other fifty letters are to be arranged consecutively over the thousand petals, twenty times.
diverting Thyself, in secrecy with Thy Lord – Sudhha-Vidya in coalescence with Sadaasivaa is known as the Saadaakhyaa or the Paramaatman, which may be charecterised as the twnty-sixth Tattvaa, on the attainment of which is experienced Nirvaavaa or Jivanmukti.
having pierced through – having got beyond, after overcoming and absorbing in her own form. The ascent and the descent of the Kundalini constituting the Kundalini Yoga are said to form an Antaryaagaa.
the Earth situated in Mulaadhaara – But for the Muladhara, which partakes of the character of the Earth-element through its subtle form of Gandha-tanmaatraa, the body will become unstable with its equilibrium disturbed. This chakraa is no other than the Tri-kona of the Sri-chakraa. Piercing through this element would mean conquering it. The Yogin who does so is said to attain the power of penetration through massive stone walls, etc.
the Water in the Manipuraa – Manipura, the interior of which the Devi is said to fill with gems; hence the practice among the Samayin-s of the offering of jewels studded with various kinds of gems, while meditating on her in this seat. Although the Manipura is the third in the order of the Chakraas, it has been given the second place in the stanza to suit the order of the elements. This Chakraa represents water in its Rasa-tanmaatraa form. Conquest of this by the Yogin is said to confer on him the next higher power of mastery, such as floating, walking, etc. over water, The inner Dasaaraa of the Sri-chakraa is indicated by this.
the Fire abiding in the Svaadhishtaana — where the Devi is said to take her stand in the form of Kundalini, of her own accord, making the knot of Rudhra-granthi thereon. The fore is in the form of Ruupa-tanmaatraa. The conquest of this by the Yogin is credited with the bestowal of the power of fire-walking,etc. The SAshta-kona of the Sri-chakraa is indicated by this.
the Air in the Heart (Anaahataa) – the Air in the form of Sparsa-tanmaatraa. The heart signifies the Anaahata-chakraa of the heart-lotus. The word Anaahataa means the Naadaa, sound, produced without impact in the recess of the heart; hence ythe name of the Chakraa. The outer Dasaara of the Sri-chakraa is indicated by this. By the conquest of air, the Yogin is said to attain the fleetness of wind, buoyancy, etc.
the Ether – in the form of Sabda-tanmaatraa; above – i.e., above the heart, which is meant by the Chakra wich is as clear as the crystal, namely, the Visudhhi. The Chatur-dasaara of the Sri-ckakraa is indicated by this. By the conquest of this the Yogin attains the power of traversing the ethereal regions.
It may be noted here that Purnananda Swamin, the author of Satcakra-nirupana and other Taantrikaa-s are of the view the elements , Earth, Eater, Fire, Air and Ether have, as their corresponding Chakraas , the Muladhra, the Svadishtana, the Manipoura, the Anahata and the Visudhhi, which is at variance with this stanza of Samkara-bhagavatpaadaa, the author of this work, who has the support of the Vismakeswara Tantra in his favour, as explained by Bhaskaracharya in his Sethubanda.
Manas between the eyebrows (Aajnaa) – Manas, which embraces within itself the five senses of perception and the five senses of motor action, i.e., in all, the eleven Tattvaas. This refers to the Ajnaa-chakraa, so called because it is at this stage that a speck of knowledge about the Devi dawns. As she is bent upon breaking through the Brahma-granthi on the way to the Sahasraaraa, she remains there only for a trice, manifesting herslf in the form of a streak of lighting. The Chathush-kona i.e. the Bhugra of the Sri-chakraa is indicated by this. By conquering the mind, the Yogin is said to attain mystic powers, such as clairvoyance, clairaudience, telepathy etc.
The mystic powers explained above, as resukting from the mastery of these Chakraas, are really so many pitfalls to be avoided by the practitioner, as they are likely to lead him astray from his final goal of Nirvaanaa.
These six Chakraas are but temporary stages or planes wherein the Kundalini rests awhile, avowedly for mastering them, while the Sahasraaraa is her permanent abode, whence the practioner should not lose sight of his final goal, Nirvaanaa, beguiled by the temptations offered by the psychic powers attainable at the lower centres, but should lead the Kundalini on to the Sahasraaraa, there to effect her union with her Lord. Up to the moment of such blending, the practitioner retains his individual consciousness and thereafter enters on the blissful state of Nirvaanaa as long as the Kundalini rests in the Sahasraaraa prior to her descent therefrom. The duration of her staty depends on the strength of practice and the previous experience of the practitioner.
broken through the entire path of Kula – and thus having transcended the tenty-one Tattvaa-s from Prithvi to Manas, and the six-chakraas, which when taken together, would form the lower Sri-chakraa.
Bija- Bhuta- Chakraa- part of Srichakraa
Vam – Water – Manipura – Antardasaara
Ram – Fire – Svaadishthaana- Astakona
Lam – Earth – Mulaadhaaraa – Trikona
The same and thus having transcended the tenty-one Tattvaa-s from Prithvi to Manas, and the six-chakraas, which when taken together, would form the lower Sri-chakraa.
The same also establishes the identity of the Naadaa with the Bindu. The Naadaa is the SriChakra.
The Bindu, as will be shown presently, is the group of six lotuses:
- The Mulaadshaaraa is of four petals. Its pericarp is the Tri-kona.
- The Swaadhisthaanaa is of six petals. Its pericarp is the Ashta-kona.
- The Manipura is of ten petals. Its pericarp is the
- The Anaahataa is of twelve petals. Its pericarp is the
- The Visuddhi is of sixteen petals. Its pericarp is the Dasa-kona.
- The Aajnaa is of two petals. Its pericarp is of two phases: the Astadhalapadma is of one phase and the Shodasadhalapadma of the other phase.
Of the three circles,
- One is of the character of the Rudra-granthi at the end of the Swaadhisthaanaa,
- Another is of the character of the Vishnu-granthi at the end of the Anaahataa,
- And another is of the charater of the Brahma-granthi at the end of the Aajnaa ckakra.
Above these, the three quadrilaterals with the four doors have flights of steps at bthe four doors. This Bhu-grha is the pericarp of the Sahasaradhalapadma. There are a thousand petals to this lotus. The Baindava-sthaanaa is in the middle of the pericarp with the four doors.
In this manner, the identity of the Sri-chakra with the Kamalas serving as palaces for the Devi may be sen. This identity, known as that of the Naadaa and the Bindu, should be preserved as a profound secret and has to be divulged only by the Guru for the benefit of the disciple.
The inhering of the fifty Kalaa-s in the six Chakraa-s:
(from explanation to stanza 2)
When meditaing upon the six chakras, the 50 letters are to be visualised :
- Mulaadhaaraa: 4 letters from va to sa to be visualised as resting on the 4 petals of this Chakra.
- Svaadhishthaaaa: 6 letters from ba to la to be visualised as resting on the 6 petals of this Chakra.
- Manipuraa: 10 letters from da to pha to be visualised as resting on the 10 petals of this Chakra.
- Anaahataa: 12 letters from ka to tha to be visualised as resting on the 12 petals of this Chakra.
- Visuddhi: 16 letters from a to visarga to be visualised as resting on the 16 petals of this Chakra.
- Aajnaa: 2 letters ha to ksa to be visualised as resting on the 2 petals of this Chakra.