Mystagogia: entering deeply into the further mysteries
In preparation for composing the Tathagatagarbhatārā Tantra there was much quality time spent in daily Dhyani Buddha meditations; in particular with the early morning Akṣhobhya Buddha Dharani and additional refrain of the mantra, OṀ Akṣhobhya HŪṀ. I remember Tozen once sharing how the Dhyani Buddhas inspirited him in the development of his Dharmakaya Sutra; the same occurred for me—in particular with Akṣhobhya Buddha. Spending daily quality time in this meditation empowered me to see how the Tathagatagarbhatārā Tantra was going to unfold—directions just appeared before my Mind’s eye and led me through its development. This meditation has also matured into something deeper—something along the lines of what the Tibetan Buddhists refer to as “the Inner-Fire-Meditation.” While still in its early stages of maturation, new revelations are occurring daily during my early morning meditations with Akṣhobhya—something truly wonderful is unfolding inwardly and the following offers some observations into its ongoing progress.
Rising daily at early pre-dawn—when the sky outside has a wonderful shade of Deep Velvety Blue—the meditation begins by watching and listening to the Akṣhobhya Buddha Dharani:
At the conclusion of the Dharani the meditation then shifts to listening to and meditating along with the following lead-chant:
The chant is a recording by Desai, one of the better OṀ chant variations that are out there these days. The actual chant lasts for 29 min, during which time one begins to discern the subsequent unfoldment:
One focuses on the transparent Blue Body [self-empty of all materiality] of Akṣhobhya Buddha. There is a lightness of awareness—just like a balloon that is filled with Pure-Qi; this is a Spirit-Body, transparent with a crystalline hue. One should never condemn the Spirit-Body; it’s not the body consciousness but a very real Supra-Transcendent realization of the Mystical Body of the Tathagata. This is a body that is filtered through the Amala-consciousness—radiating Pure and Luminous Unborn Light. In actuality one is partaking in the Diamond-Mind of Zen.
Firstly, one intones the mantra with an initial deep-cut accentuation point with the OṀ, and then half-way through the chant one intones Akṣhobhya HŪṀ. This is one continuous breath; after awhile one discerns that it is the Tathagatas breathing through you. The rhythm of the mantra becomes effective as the rising kundalini is activated. This is spiritually known as the rising of sambodhi from the Primordial Dragon [Root] Chakra. Next the Central Channel (the nexus in which the energies of the chakras intersect) begins to open midway between the Dragon-Eye of Tathata (center of forehead) Chakra (thus activating the supreme Wisdom Eye of the Tathagatas) and the two nostrils (right and left channels); they in turn inhale primordial Qi as all three of these channels (middle, right/left) curl-up into the Dharmamegha (Crown) Chakra. The pathway then leads down the spine towards the Primordial Dragon (Root) Chakra at the tip of the base. This movement of the “winds” creates a spiraling of light within these three chakra centers.
When they arrive at the tip of the Primordial Dragon Chakra, the generated Qi rises into the Bodhi-Chakra (or the Dantian)—this is four finger-widths below the navel. It helps to visualize the right channel as the Red Dragon and the left channel as the White Dragon. The rising Qi enters into the Bodhi-Chakra—which can be likened to a red inverted triangle with 64 mini-channels emanating from it; these Bodhi-channels in turn lead the Qi upwards to the Self (Heart) Chakra—which is shaped like a Blue Circle with 8 branches pointing downwards toward the Bodhi-Chakra.
Simultaneously there is also interaction between the Dhammasota (Throat) Chakra—which is likened unto a red sphere with 16 branch-channels going upwards into the Dharmamegha Chakra—which is multicolored and triangular in dimension, with 32 branch channels going downwards towards the Dhammasota Chakra.
Breaking this down, all this “Channel” business is really spiritual interaction between Akṣhobhya (Blue, Self Chakra), Amitabha (Red Dhammasota Chakra), and Vairocana (Dharmamegha Chakra) Buddhas.
Meanwhile the circulating sambodhi-energy is initiated by Amoghasiddhi (Primordial Dragon Chakra) Buddha. In a very real sense Amoghasiddhi is the one who keeps the spiritual activation in motion. Perhaps this is why Amoghasiddhi is the most mysterious of all the Dhyani Buddhas. He is the generative force that keeps all the interaction happening.
Lastly, the one who gets to thoroughly enjoy all these energizing events is the Spiritual Bodhichild in the Bodhi-Chakra (Tārā’s Womb)—in particular with the interaction between the upward branches stemming from the Bodhi-Chakra to the downward branches of the Self-Chakra that, in effect, send all the juice back down to the Bodhichild and thus filling Tārā’s Womb with Light. Hence—like the “Inner-Fire” effect—as an inner-warmth literally permeates through every aspect of your entire being. The ensuing inner-bliss is out of this world! To maintain this effect throughout the course of the day one focuses on the Sugata-garbha (belly) Chakra which mystically anchors (through Ratnasambhava—as the Yellow, Sugata-garbha Chakra) the perpetually circulating Qi.
Advanced Yogins in the heart of Tibet used to heighten this effect by sitting naked outdoors in the frigid cold, whilst utilizing dampened cloths from icy waters and applying them to the skin, eventually making themselves impervious to the cold. Clearly not recommended to try this advanced technique at home <g>.