Yoga Retreat
Mother As First Guru ( By Swami Gurupremananda Saraswati
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~Sahasrara~


Meaning and Symbolism

   As with Bindu Visarga, Sahasrara is not a chakra at all, although sometimes it is included within descriptions of the chakras since it is the sum total of them all, plus much more. Whereas Bindu gives rise to the chakras, even pre-existent to that, Sahasrara is the cosmic source of the chakras (including Bindu Visarga and Hiranyagarbha as well).
   Sahasrara literally means "one thousand" but that is only suggestive of something infinite, something beyond enumeration. Its essence and reality are way beyond the personal and human framework, beyond all imaginings, descriptions and known experiences of the mind. At this level of existence energy (shakti) and consciousness (shiva) are completely united and undifferentiated. There is only Oneness and no other. There is both form and formlessness. This concept is known by many names: God, Brahman, Paratparam, Paramatman, Buddha Consciousness, Christ Consciousness, Heaven, Nirvana, Infinity, Jehovah, Allah, Supreme Love, Cosmic Conscious-ness. These are all just names for the un-nameable and words for the indescribable.

Location
   Varying locations are often given for Sahasrara in the texts, both ancient and modern. Some indicate it as just below the scalp, at the position of the fontanelle. Others show it at the crown, right on the top of the head whilst others place it slightly above the crown. In many of the old religious pictures, the concept of Sahasrara shown as the aura of sainthood or enlightenment, radiating light in all directions around the head. All of these descriptions are trying to depict something which is both inclusive of human structure and experience and, at the same time, beyond it. In any case, Sahasrara can be thought of as where the highest state of humanness bridges into Godliness.

Bodily Systems
   Again, in many texts, there is disagreement as to exactly which physiological functions Sahasrara relates. Since it is not an actual chakra within the physical body, there are no specific bodily systems or organs governed by Sahasrara, however, as the master overseer of all human function, it does have overall control of the brain, and as such has connections with the pituitary and pineal glands and hypothalamus, which are also closely related to Ajna Chakra.


The Abode of Supreme
Love and Knowledge

   Throughout history, many who have realised it, have proclaimed that God is nothing other than pure love. In our Western and (predomi-nantly) Judeo-Christian culture, the heart centre (Anahata Chakra) has been of major importance for devotional prayer and meditation - hence the importance of the Star of David. However, in the Vedanta, tantra and yoga philosophies, God's nature is described as Sat-chit-ananda (truth-consciousness-bliss). For the Eastern mystics, this experience is more often realised through meditation on Ajna Chakra - hence the importance of the third eye. Ultimately, there can be no differentiation between all such supreme states - the only thing which varies is the way in which one approaches it and the words used to describe it.
   The possibility of self transcendence through the heart centre has lead many people (the more devotional types) to believe that the "heart" is in fact the seat of unconditional love, just as for the less devotional types, the "mind" is often seen as the source of all knowledge. However neither of these concepts are quite right. The source of supreme love cannot be at Anahata itself, just as Ajna Chakra cannot be the seat of supreme knowledge, since both these chakras reside within the psyche of the individual, and are therefore still within the realms of dualism. Both these chakras are more like doorways (or Bindus) through which one can trigger self transcendence and the experience of Sahasrara.
   The danger of over-emphasising the heart as "the way to God", is that it can become a comfort zone of non-transcendental (emotional type) feelings, causing the aspirant to avoid the further growth required by Vishuddhi and Ajna Chakras. The danger of course, of over-emphasising the mind as the way to God, is to become caught up in a dry, unloving, intellectual pursuit of transcendence. The ultimate way, which the great yogis have prescribed, is through a balanced and integrated evolution of all the 6 non-transcendental chakras, whereupon the sum of such development will, one day, awaken the full experience of Sahasrara realisation which includes God-is-love, God-is-knowledge, God-is-truth, God-is-consciousness, God-is-bliss.

Self Expression
   Self expression of one's divinity is a pretty absurd contradiction in terms! Nonetheless, some spiritual aspirants do try very hard to be divine and some
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Please Note:
The complete ‘Mother As First Guru’ Set also contains Book 2 + 2 audio cds. Book 2 relating to comprehensive Yoga Practices as well as the Audio Instructional practices (2 cd set) are only available with your purchase and is NOT available on the Reading Room.

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