In Part 2 of this series, we explored the need to refine and purify the subtle body, so that consciousness can expand and evolve. In fact, without this cleaning of the subtle body there is no real evolution. What needs to be cleaned from the subtle body?
Close your eyes for a moment and imagine the subtle body, the heartmind field of a human being, as a vast field of subtle energy, of consciousness. If it helps, imagine it is like a large body of water. When the field is pure, it is absolutely still and calm, like a glassy lake. When it is disturbed by turbulence, it is choppy and rough, and the water is moving in all directions. Eddies of water form, creating currents.
Similarly, the subtle body can also be filled with turbulence, due to the many impressions that form on a daily basis. When these impressions become more fixed, they lodge in our system creating heaviness and knots of energy that eventually solidify. They are known in the yogic literature as samskaras, and because of their materiality they are the cause of our coming again and again into this physical plane of existence through birth and rebirth.
So how do we form impressions in the subtle body? Let’s understand the way they form, and how each impression is drawn by its vibration to a particular centre in the human system. When we read the works of Ram Chandra of Shahjahanpur, he gives a beautiful example. You are walking home and you notice a beautiful rose flower blossoming, so you admire its beauty. The next time you are passing, you go near and admire its beauty in more detail. The next day, you feel like holding that flower in your hand and smelling it. Progressively a day may come when you say, “Let me take this rose bush home.”
We are attracted to some things, like the beautiful rose flower and its fragrance, and we dislike others, like the thorns of the rose bush. Our orientation – our attraction or repulsion – creates an emotion in our heart. That emotion is not in the mind; it is always in the heart. It forms an impression. When we repeat that emotion again and again, it forms a deeper habitual pattern in our heart, that becomes more and more fixed as a samskara: “I don’t like spaghetti,” “I am scared of my boss,” “I love to go swimming,” “I do not trust men,” etc. etc. This belief then affects the way we live our daily life, coloring our perception and decisions.
We face different types of problems, issues, likes and dislikes in worldly life. When we are constantly worrying about our worldly problems, a level of anxiety and worry builds up, and accordingly this forms heaviness in the heart. No one can escape worldly worries and everything in moderation is tolerable. When we worry about something it is a good indication that we have to act upon it, but worrying about it perpetually, without acting to solve the problem, is only going to make it worse. When we constantly think about worldly problems and brood over them it affects point A, which is found close to the heart on the left side of the chest.
Another part of human existence is our attraction towards the opposite sex. Again, when it is in moderation it is tolerable, but when it overburdens us those impressions form at point B.
When we have strong likes and dislikes, what we also call prejudices for and against certain things and people, we may not speak about them but we are constantly playing with them in our hearts, and they affect our thinking often without us knowing they are doing so. Those impressions are deposited at point C.
Guilt is one of the heaviest impressions we can form. It arises out of something we did not do but should have done, or something we did but should not have done. Guilt gives rise to so much heaviness in the heart and this heaviness is deposited at point D.
To find point A, measure two finger widths to the right side to your left nipple, and then three fingers down.
Go two finger widths further down from point A to find point B.
Go two finger widths further down from point B to find point C. It will be on the lowest rib, directly underneath points A and B.
Go two finger widths to the left to find point D, exactly below the nipple.
This is the anatomical aspect of these points to which we attract certain impressions. These are not the only points in the human system where impressions lodge, but they are some of the most important and a good place to start.
Why is it helpful to share this knowledge? So that we become more aware. When we notice impressions lodging, we can adjust ourselves and clean ourselves, instead of judging things all the time.
Self-acceptance is a very vital attitude in any process of personal transformation. Without it, we stay stuck in judgement and it is difficult to then let go of the impressions; instead we go round and round thinking about them, making them deeper. It also becomes difficult to develop love for ourselves without self-acceptance. Without self-love, we are handicapped, and love for others will also not develop. We will not get to first base.
The process of cleaning removes these impressions that form around the heart, creating lightness and a carefree feeling. With this we can happily work on changing ourselves, and the journey begins.
Cleaning is an integral part of the daily Heartfulness practice, and is done in the evening after the day’s work. It complements meditation by purifying the subtle body. It is one of the most incredible tools we have for self-development, as it removes those habits and patterns that keep us stuck in our own little world and prevents us expanding our consciousness into the vastness that is waiting us on our journey of self-discovery.
In Part 5, we will explore more of the inner journey of the human experience.
Kamlesh Patel is the world teacher of Heartfulness, and the fourth spiritual Guide in the Sahaj Marg system of Raja Yoga. He oversees Heartfulness centers and ashrams in over 130 countries, and guides the thousands of certified Heartfulness trainers who are permitted to impart Yogic Transmission under his care. Known to many as Daaji, he is also an innovator and researcher, equally at home in the inner world of spirituality and the outer world of science, blending the two into transcendental research on the evolution of consciousness, and expanding our understanding of the purpose of human existence to a new level.