This is a translation by the site admin from http://www.Sikhawareness.com. I also highly recommend that you go there and read his Japji Sahib and Atam Gian katha translations.
The following is a discourse done by Baba Ishar Singh Ji in 1961. Baba Waryam Singh Jee had had it translated into english and published in the book discourses of the beyond 2.
Please read it carefully. Magazine issues written by Baba ji are available at http://www.atammargusa.com/
Please read this with an open mind whether you belive in sants, mahapursh or not.
Sant Maharaj (Sri 108 Sant Ishar Singh Ji Maharaj, Rare Wale) used to give audiences in Chandigarh in May 1961. Today being a holiday, a large numbers of seekers and also lovers of other religions had collected there. One of the enthusiasts asked me to request Sant Maharaj to give a detailed description of inner circles (chakkars), which the congregation wanted to hear. Accordingly to the great saint was requested to accede to their request. On that day, a lot of seekers were present, also many great souls (mahatmas), including many Hindu Mahatmas also were in attendance. Many Saints talk of Kundalini: also there is mention of the piercing of inner chakkars. There are different theories about them. Sant Ji was requested to throw light in connection with these ?circles?.
On hearing this petition of people, Sant Ji Maharaj said that according to the philosophy of the Gurus, breaking of these chakkars is not necessary at all. Guru Nanak?s religion is very convenient and simple. It can be called the path of ?Surat Sabad Marg? (The way of contemplation on Sabad, the holy word, sound) or the path of naam (Gods name). Even a person of the lowest intellect, if he has full faith, can walk on this path, by taking prayers and the recitation of the holy name and texts can cross this ocean of the world; whereas it is beyond the capacity of the common people in this iron age (Kalyug), to negotiate this tough path (of bursting the chakkars). The reason is that in the Iron Age, people?s conduct, behaviour and diet have become low class. The body has not the strength, which is needed for bursting those chakkars, nor is there such a favourable atmosphere, where one can sit and practice such penances constantly. If a thousand seekers try practicing these austerities, the heat produced by pranayam (breathing exercises) will drive 999 out of them mad. That condition would be beyond cure, even by the doctors. In olden ages the body used to be strong and stout. Celibacy was practiced fully; and the body had the latent strength to endure these very tough penances. In today?s age, there is the forceful churning of the thoughts, and the bonfire of desires renders a man slave to desire for wealth and property. In such an atmosphere man?s inner consciousness is unable to think of anything other then Maya (false pleasures of the world). For this reason, Guru Nanak, the emperor of the universe, keeping in view the foul atmosphere of the world, popularised such methods, as are simple and comfortable, in short, he put the seeker on the path of detachment while working in the world with devotion as a chief way, and knowledge of the fundamentals. To help that programme, he popularised such practices as doing one?s duty, sharing what you have with others and repeating the name of God and bathing in sacred spots. On this path all can walk, educated or uneducated, the rich or poor.
Your question is about hathyog (practices of body torture), so make a detailed study of these. In bygone times, these used to be the practices in places of solitude and caves far from the madding crowds. The chief items of that school are Dhoti, Neti, Basti, Tratak, Neoli, and Kapalbhati, which are explained below.
Dhoti: – Take a long bandage of fine cloth, 4 fingers broad and 22.5 foot. Dip in luke warm water and practice inserting it inside your mouth, at the rate of 1.5 foot per day. The whole cloth will be pushed inside your body in 15 days. Then holding the outer end of the cloth firmly in your teeth, try to take out the whole cloth bit by bit.
This would clean up the regions of one?s liver and the intestines.
Neti: – Take a strong cotton thread very fine and soft, as long as the stretched human hand. Push it inside through the nose, by holding the breath and pushing it through the power of breath. Take it out of the mouth as if you are churning the curds. In this way, the impurities of the nose and the throat can be cleaned.
Basti: – Sit in a water tub, dipping yourself up to the navel. Take a bamboo tube 6 fingers long and one finger thick. Insert it through the anus and by the force of breath push it inside and also pull in water. This is doing enema in water.
Tratak: – Focus your eyes without winking on any object concentrating your attention on it till that time, when the eyes through sheer fatigue begin to water. This exercise could destroy all diseases of the eyes. It can break the evil tendencies towards too much sleep and laziness. Just as a very precious article is kept with great care, similarly know that the centre for the exercise is the nostrils or the middle place of the two eyebrows.
Neoli: – Sit, keeping down both the shoulders, straighten your back, and keep your backbone erect at 90 degrees. With the power of breath, move the stomach (belly) right and left, up and down, as if you are churning the curd.
Kapalbhati: – one has to do Pranayam (breathing exercises) in three stages drawing in breath, holding in, and releasing the breath (rechak) again and again; like the blacksmith?s bellows that keep a fire burning bright.
Pranayam: – Controlling the movement of breathing is called Pranayam. According to specialists, there are in the human body 72 crore 72 lakh, 10 thousand and 201 nerves and ducts. Ten out of them are helpful in the breathing exercises. There are many methods of Pranayam, which are very difficult. But the two types are more prevalent, moon ? limbed and sun ? limbed. There are three chief nadis (nerve or ducts) in our bodies They are Ida to the left of the nose; Pingala to the right and the one between the two is called Sukhmana.
First by the way of Ida, repeat Gurmantar 16 times, while slowly drawing in the breath (its called poork) then holding breath while repeating Gurmantar 64 times (it is called kambak) and then slowly releasing the breath, while repeating Gurmantar for 32 times (this is called rechak).
Sukhman Nadi runs from Mooladhar (lowest spot near the naval) up to the tenth gate (crown of the head). Inside this Sukhmana, there is in a fine form Kundalini Nadi, which has the sheen and power brings perfect peace of mind. It can destroy all sins and ignorance?s. Another nerve called Bhujang Nadi has shut the opening of the Sukhmana Nadi. When the seeker practices Pranayam by its force, Bhujang Nadi gets a little away from the mouth of the Sukhmana Nadi. With the power of the Pranayam, these chakkars (circles) are broken one by one and by living force the life breath, prana enters the tenth gate. Making a reference to this, Guru Maharaj has ordained thus ?
One may recite by heart the wisdom of the six schools of philosophy. He may perform worship; bear the frontal mark and bath in shrines. He may practice inner washing of feat and adopt eighty-four postures of the yogis. But in these he shall find no peace.
Page 98 of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
Making the still of the circuitous chord, whosoever practices the inly washing, inhalation, exhalation and suspension of breath. Without the true Guru, he obtains not right understanding and straying in doubt, he is drowned to death. The blind one is soiled, yea, so soiled and defiled, that whosoever he washes himself, his minds filth departs not ever. Without the name, vain are all deeds, like those of the conjurer, who deceives men through illusion.
Page 1343 of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
Thou keepest fasts, sayest vesper prayers, purifiest thyself and doest good deeds. Thou goest on pilgrimages in all directions and eatest not anything. Touching no one, thou cookest thy food. Thou makest a great display of thy inly-washings. Thou burnest incense and lamps in the temples. All these equal not God?s name.
Page 1229 of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
The gate of the Sukhmana is opened with a very great difficulty by means of a Pranayam. For Pranayam, there is the exercise of Kapalbhati. By massaging the tongue, they make it so thin and long that it can come out and touch the forehead. Then making it turn upside down, it is made to enter the ear and with its tip, it closes the hole, which is above the palate. This step dissipates the great heat created by the Pranayam (which otherwise makes the man either mad or dead). According to ascetics, to the left of the frown spot, the moon rains Amrit (nectar). The nectar is tasted by the tongue. This liquid (Amrit) is also called Amar Varani (immortal drink).
Now I will briefly explain to you about the six chakkars in the body. Those who want to take notes may take them down.
1. Mooldhar Chakkar ? (Pelvic Plexus) This is the chakkars in the region of the anus. This contains an inverted yellow lotus with four petals. The four petals are its 3 corners in the shape of the letters (va, sa, kha, sha). This is the centre for the desire for knowledge. Above where Kundalini Nadi is situated, is the thrones of sex, where are born the ideas of woman, swan, and mind. At this place, the yogis meditate on God Ganesh.
2. Swadishthan Chakkar ? (Hypogastric Plexus) It lies at the root of the male organ and it contains an upward positioned lotus with 6 petals. Its 6 petals are symbolised by the letters (ba, bha, ma, ya, ra, la). At this position, the ascetics meditate on God Brahma (Creator).
3. Mani Poorak Chakkar ? (Epigastric Plexus or Solar Plexus) It is located in the region of the navel. It has an inverted lotus of blue colour having 10 petals. Its 10 petals are in the shape of letters (da, dha, na, ta, tha, da, dha, na, pa, pha). In this position the ascetics think of God Vishnu.
4. Anahat Chakkar ? (Cardiac Plexus) It is a golden coloured lotus with 12 petals located in the heart. Its 12 petals and the 12 letters (ka, kha, ga, gha, na (as in long) cha, chha, ja, jha, na, ta, tha). Here the yogis mediate upon Rudra (Shiva) along with his mountain abode (Kailash Parbat).
5. Vishudda Chakkar ? (Carotid Plexus) Here is smoke coloured upward looking lotus with 16 petals, which is situated in the throat. Its 16 petals stand for 16th letters namely (a, aa, I, ee, u, uoo, ri, ree, lri, lree, a, aie, o, ou, ang, aan (n as in long). It is called jalandhar throne. Here one meditates on the self.
6. Aagiya Chakkar ? (Medular Plexus) It is located at the root of the two eyes and the nose. Here is situated an inverted lotus with 2 petals, white like the moon. Its two letters are (khya and gya). It is called the Udiyang throne. Here the yogis meditate upon God himself, the giver of salvation. Phal (fruit or result). Whatever fruit (gain) is achieved by the meditation of the various above-mentioned chakkars, can be obtained by the meditation of this single Chakkar. Hence the great souls lay emphasis on concentrating one?s mind on this Chakkar, named Agya Chakkar. When living force and mind are stabilized at this place, it has the potentiality of being able to practise Samparigyat Samadhi (Transcendental Meditation).
At this point meet the three nadis; named Ida, Pingala and Sukhmana, the start from Mooldhar Chakkar come by different routes. Hence the confluence of the three nadis is called the Triveni. (At Triveni at Prayag or Allahabad, meet the three rivers, Ganga, Yamna and the underground Saraswati). Ida is the Ganga, Pingala is Yamna and Sukhmana is the river Saraswati of the Triveni This place (Triveni) has been designated the king of all pilgrimages; it is also called Atam Teerth (place of the pilgrimage or the self or the bath at the sacred tank of Amritsar). By bathing the mind at the confluence, all sins are destroyed. Guru Maharaj has ordained thus-
Then alone is one known as true, when he abides in the pilgrimage station of his heart. He takes instruction from the Guru and sits and abodes according to his will.
Ang 468 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
This Agya Chakkar is also called the universal heart or the heart of all. It is the same spot, which is mentioned in connection with heart of the holy name. One with the gross intellect is called the (fleshy) heart. This is the first step of the opening of the divine eye.
It is called the organ of clairvoyance, or the instrument of the divine sight. It is the spot of Third Til (mole). It is also called the point of saveeda.
Above the Aagiya Chakkar is the place of mid forehead. This spot has been variously called the Guru Chakkar, Manas (mental) Chakkar, Forehead Chakkar but all these are included in the seven Chakkars.
Above it is the thousand-petal lotus, called the tenth gate. From the region of the mid forehead, the physical body finishes. Above it begins the universal self. The crown of the head and the blank Chakkar are its symbolic gross form (cerebral plexus). Above the palate in the forehead is the divine hole. This is the centre of all the powers. With its sheen of multi coloured lights is the lotus with myriads of petals. On these petals are the alphabets from (a) to (kha) with all the sounds and letters. At this place, the yogis through the power of yoga become omniscient, having knowledge of all lores and learning?s, and having got that gyan (true knowledge) they are able to know all the languages, dialects, also all the past, present, and future events. At that place is the residence of God almighty, with all his powers. At this stage, the mind being stable, one?s all tendencies are effectively controlled and one develops the capability of Asampragyat Samadhi (highest form of contemplation of God). Many scholars are of the opinion that this is the living place of the divine. Who is thumb dimential. This also is the seat of the sky, on the scale of a thumb. Here one obtains the realisation of the self, and it is the place of the supreme divine. When the living force and mind become stable, at this very place, one gets the ability for Nirvikalp Samadhi (the supreme meditation); and all tendencies are totally controlled. At this place, the light of the soul falls on the intellect. The intellect of consciousness is casual body and because of its relationship with Supreme Self, it is known as Jiva Ataman. The casual body is incorporated in subtle body and the subtle body is part of the physical body. Thus the soul is spread all over the body, and by bursting its working self, one can point to all the spots. In short, in a very fine spiritual condition, the place of the soul is said to be the region of the heart because the heart is the chief limb of the body. The entire activities of the body are directed from the heart region. From here all nerves (or ducts) are branching to all parts of the body When the physical heart stops beating, all activities come to an end. Therefore in the godly state, the seat of the soul can be said to be the heart. In the dream state, the place of the soul is said to be the throat. In the walking state, whatever object one sees, whatever object one hears and whatever enjoyments one tastes have the epi centre in the Nadi named Hita, which is as fine as the thousandth part of the hair. Hence the knowledge of the experienced things is in the throat, in the dream state. During the waking state, the soul with the help of the sense organs is spread all outside. As Guru Maharaj has pointed out in Gurbani ?
The bride who goes amiss by seeing the body of nine apertures, obtains not the peerless thing of God?s name.
Ang 339 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
It is the soul, which sees through the eyes. During the meditation, the place of the soul is said to be Agya Chakkar. This is also the place of divine vision. Here it obtains the divine eye. During the Asampragyat Samadhi (meditation) the soul stays in the divine hole; because from this centre, the control of all tendencies is possible.
Kundalini Shakti ? All the powers that exist tin the universe have been collected by Waheguru in this part of the body. But the main triangle of Sukhmana Nadi, rising from the backbone, is spread upwards. In the normal state it remains closed (sleeping). Hence its power remains secret and unknown. Therefore its power combined with the power of life?s airs and joined with the Ida and Pingala, by the way of the left and right and bursting the various Chakkars is spread upward. It keeps on flowing all over the body. In this three cornered region, this Nadi, extremely fine like the electric power lies coiled around. We can give the example of such a she serpent, which is sleeping, coiled three and half times and pressing its tail in its mouth. This is called the power of the Kundalini. This remains sleeping, unless awakened by special exercise. None of the functions can be visible to the eye of flesh. For this reason, the physiologists have not been able to discover anything about it. But in olden times, learned men of countries like Greece and Rome, such as Plato and Pythagoras, who were seers of self, have made references to all these in their writings. They state that under the navel, there is such a wondrous power, which by lighting up one?s intellect, makes manifest such divine powers within man.
If by any exercise, this Kundalini Nadi unwinds it coils and gets inside the Sukhmana Nadi, then it is said to have come awake. Just as in the house, if you press the electricity buttons all the bulbs, fans, fridges, etc start functioning, similarly if you press the switch of the Kundalini Nadi the electric current carried by the Sukhmana wire travels all over the body and lights all the Chakkars and all the Nadis (nerves or ducts). Wherever the Kundalini power reaches in the body all the lotuses become straight and the mind is stabilized. As Guru Maharaj has ordained ?
Turning away from the world, the heart lotus filled with Nectar and this mind, then goes not anywhere. Merging in the primal lord, man forgets not the mental meditation. By the Guru?s grace, all the organs are blessed with five virtues and man abides in his own home. Nanak is the slave of him, who by searching the Lord?s name obtains this home of his.
Ang 1291 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
When the current reaches the Agya Chakkar, it also touches sampragyat and the tenth gate (crown of the head). Then all human tendencies come under complete control and one develops real capability for Asampragyat Samadhi (transcendental meditation). In this condition the seeker attains the knowledge of the whole world very quickly. When Kundalini power enters the mouth of Sukhmana Nadi one begins to have supernatural experiences. Making show of them is forbidden. There is reference to that ?
Indulge thou not in ego and abide within thyself. The knower himself knows everything
Ang 580 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
With so much talk, the time of the meeting was almost over. Sant Maharaj said that above that is the blank place in the universe, and there the universes end. The seeker who has crossed all the illusions, reaches the region of Truth (heaven) by the power of repeating God?s name and experiences ecstasy by observing the phenomenon of the infinite. Above that is experienced the miracle of ?being full of bliss, in the shower of the grace of God? as says Satguru Nanak. The almighty God attracts to himself man?s soul, which was separated from him and merges the individual self in the universal self. As is ordained ?
As water comes and gets blended with water, so does his lights blend with the supreme light. His coming and going end and he attains rest. Nanak is ever devoted unto the lord.
Ang 278 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
For this reason Guru Maharaj has clarified ?
What are they like, who forget not the name? They are like the lord. Know that there is absolutely no difference between the two.
Ang 397 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
That between the saints and the infinite lord, there is no difference.
Ang 486 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
The same is ordained in the Sukhmani Sahib ?
The great god, Shiva, searches for the man, who knows god. Nanak the Braham gyani, is himself the exalted lord.
Ang 273 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
A saint who reaches this state is called Brahmgyani (one who knows God), and gets the title of the Khalsa. But the foolish persons, badly lost in the darkness of ignorance, do not accept the fundamental philosophy of the Guru, get the title of Manmukh (the ignorant) mind orientated. Like the crows, they crow together and spoil the path of truth. Sceptical to the fundamentals taught in the Guru Granth Sahib Ji and having turned their face away from the Guru, they fall a prey to spiritual quacks and do not achieve any good state. They cannot be rid of the cycle of births and deaths. Spiritual ideas are the only true ideas. By accepting them, in the light of Gurbani (Holy writ), is the only path to one?s real welfare.
Dear loving devotees, you may be connected with different faiths and communities and though you may have heard the sermons of many great persons, but so long as you do not pull yourself out of the slush of Dvait (duality or that there is second reality other then God) and do not take to the path of self realisation through the divine word, that long you can?t enter the higher strata of universal soul. Till then you will keep wallowing in your present condition ?
Because of profane affection, the man suffers agony. Death?s courier is spying all. Nanak, the Guru wards are saved by contemplating over the true name In words we are good, but in deeds bad. Within mind we are impure and black, but white from without. We emulate with those who stand and serve at lord?s door. They are imbued with the love of their bridegroom and enjoy the pleasure of his alliance. They remain powerless even when possessing power and are ever humble. Nanak, our lives become profitable if we associate with them (such brides).
Page 85 Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji
Thus the whole congregation showed obeisance to the great saint and dispersed to their respective activities, with a keen desire to hear the discourse of the great saint in the evening also.