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Yogic Ways of Cleansing and Seeing The Mind

The cleansing and the seeding techniques are a part of Raja Yoga. In Yogic terms the process of cleansing is called Shuddhi-Kriya or Shuddhikaran and the process of seeding is called Beeeja-Dharan or Beeja-Mantra. Cleansing is a process of removing the thoughts causing disorders, notions and erroneous perceptions from the mind. The seeding is a process of planting creative, constructive and cherished ideas and thoughts in the mind. By the cleansing process, the mind is purified. By the process of seeding, the individual makes further positive gains. These techniques can be used by those who are mentally unwell and also by those who are already mentally healthy.




HOW TO PERFOM THESE TECHNIQUES

Both these techniques are primarily concerned with the mind. Hence in order to perform the steps of cleansing and seeding properly an understanding of mind is essential. So let me explain first certain peculiarities of the mind. The mind holds thoughts which may be desirable or undesirable. Certain thoughts are held firmly by the mind. They do not fade out quickly or easily even when the individual has tried many times to get rid of them.

A sick mind accumulates undesirable thoughts, beliefs, strange and peculiar notions in the same way as garbage bin. These undesirable thoughts may have been in the mind in the early childhood and remained intact even when the individual is fully grown. Many of these thoughts dominate the mind of the individual and prevent him from accomplishing anything new. The individual feels trapped and helpless because he cannot control them. They play a negative role in his life and destroy the health of the mind. Therefore, it is necessary to let go all the old undesirable thoughts in order to liberate the mind from its own entrapment.

GUIDELINES FOR USING THE TECHNIQUES

• People who cannot comprehend and fully grasp the technique and process of this section due to the present state of their mental health are advised to seek the assistance of their family member or the help of some professionals dealing with mental health.

• For the healthy mind, the application of this technique does not create any problem. They can use it themselves. But they are advised to first read carefully and understand and grasp all the following four lessons before starting the actual practice. Just before using a particular lesson they should read it once more. This would facilitate the application of the technique.

FIRST SESSION (PREPRATION)

• Turn off the light in the room. Lie down on your back on a carpeted floor… close your eyes until you are asked to open it… relax completely… let every part of your body rest loosely on the floor... make sure there is no tension anywhere….keep your breathing normal…

• Now do deep breathing exercises for a while. In this deep breathing there are deep and prolonged inhalations and exhalations. There is no retention of the breath. When you inhale your stomach should rise… when you exhale your stomach should come down… there is expansion and contraction of the abdominal muscles in this deep breathing exercises … one inhalation and one exhalation make one round…

• Practice this deep breathing for about ten rounds… then relax… let the whole body be loose… keep breathing normally… imagine you are going to sleep…

• After relaxing for about five minutes become awake and alert while keeping your eyes closed… now direct your mental attention towards your toes… then mentally move slowly and gently upwards over the knee… the thighs… the spine… then the neck… now move slowly towards the head area… stay there for a second…then move mentally into the area of the mind…enter the area of the mind and stay there…

• Now try to mentally see the condition of the mind… visualize the complete whole…see it in detail patiently… be quiet and attentive… see as much of the details of the mind as possible… what do you see there…what does the mind see in your mind… there is some accumulation of undesirable material… It might appear to you as a heap of garbage… or some waste paper… or cobwebs… covering the whole mental horizons…the mind seems to be loaded with filth and dirt… do you see it… try to see it… try to see what is piled up there on the mental horizon in an undesirable way…locate and identify everything… stay on the spot for a few seconds…

• Visualization for about ten seconds is quite sufficient. Then open your eyes slowly…inhale and exhale deeply twice…remain lying on the floor in a relaxed position for a few seconds…then slowly sit up.

ACTUAL TECHNIQUE OF CLEANSING PROCESS

After the visualization has been done the cleansing process will begin by the mind itself. The mind here plays a dual role. It works as a patient at the same time it treats and corrects itself as if a doctor’s mind is correcting the patient’s mind.

• Lie down on your back on a carpeted floor… close your eyes… let the body be completely relaxed… make sure there is no tension anywhere….keep your breathing normal…feel as if you are going to sleep… after you have relaxed for five minutes become mentally alert…keep your eyes closed throughout this process… and follow the steps described below:

• Focus your mental attention towards your toes… direct your attention from the toes to the area of the thighs…then move mentally towards the waist…then over the spine…towards the neck…then move slowly towards the area of the head….now move gently to the area of the mind…let the mental-eye visualize the existing condition of the mind for a few seconds… identify and locate the undesirable thoughts in the mind again and consider them as dirt and filth… consider them as if they are covering the surface of the mind like a cobweb…

• After visualizing the condition of the mind for a few seconds prepare yourself for cleaning the filth and dirt from the mind… imagine that you are going to clean it with a brush and a piece of cloth…

• Now pick up the brush (mentally) in your right hand… start brushing and cleaning the filth with the brush gently…imagine that you are breaking the cobwebs and collecting the filth from all the corners… after collecting it imagine that you are throwing the garbage outside… throw it all out… keep doing this till you feel it is all out of the mind… You have completed the first round of cleansing…

• Now start the second round of cleansing… again use the brush for cleaning every nook and corner of the mind… do not rush… work patiently at your ease… keep cleaning till you are fully satisfied… collect whatever filth is still left and throw it all out…

• After the brushing has been completed start the polishing… gently push the brush aside… pick up a fine piece of cloth in your right hand and begin polishing the whole area of the mind till it is shining and bright… do it slowly and gently… try to reach every nook and corner of the mind and make it shine all over…

• Now begin a second round of polishing… see if any other area of the mind needs polishing… polish it to your full satisfaction… see that the whole area is neat… clean, decent and free from dirt… then withdraw your hand… put away the cleaning cloth… and relax…

• Breathe deeply twice…then open your eyes and remain lying on the floor in a relaxed condition for a while… then slowly sit up…then stand up slowly…now you have completed the first session of cleansing the mind.

GUIDELINES

Once the cleansing of the mind has been done, it need not be repeated. But in case you are not satisfied with your cleansing during the first session, repeat it after a gap of one or two days.

SECOND SESSION (SEEDING OR BEEJA-DHARAN)

Seeding should be held three or four days after the cleansing process of the mind. It can be done after two days only but do not delay it for more than seven days. To perform seeding properly you first need to understand what is meant by seed.

MEANING OF SEED

A seed symbolizes and represents your desire. It is a crystallized form of your most cherished desires and wants. An individual may have many desires but a few are more important than others. Out of these select the most important desire and let us call it Desire Number One, the most dominant desire… then select the Desire Number Two…if you feel that there is something important not covered under your desire one and two then make one more desire and make it Desire Number Three… but it is not necessary to lengthen the list of desires… now your most important desires have been identified and recognized. These three desires are the three seeds. As a seed sprouts, grows, becomes a tree and begins to bear fruit so is the case with your desire. When your desire in the form of a seed is implanted it will sprout, grow and then it will begin to bear fruit. The gradual development of the plant will be an indicator of the fulfillment of your desire.

PREPRATION FOR SEEDING THE MIND

• Lie down on your back on a carpeted floor… keep your eyes closed… breathe in a normal way…let every part of your body rest loosely on the floor… now start breathing deeply…

• While breathing you must make deep and prolonged inhalations and exhalations…your stomach should rise while inhaling… and go down while exhaling… there is expansion… and contraction… of the abdominal muscles in this deep breathing…

• Gently, bring your right hand on to the stomach… put your palm flat on the stomach without exerting any pressure… the hand should just rest on the stomach… then inhale slowly but deeply... take in as much air as possible… while inhaling let the stomach expand… your hand on the stomach will also rise as an indication of the upward expansion… after you have inhaled pause for a second. ..then start exhaling slowly… the stomach will contract and come down… contract the stomach as much as possible… when the exhalation is complete pause for a second… then start inhaling again as before… always remember to pause for a second after each inhalation and exhalation... do ten rounds of this inhaling and exhaling… In this deep breathing the mouth should remain closed throughout. Breathing should be done through the nostrils.

• After completing ten rounds of deep breathing, put you right hand on the floor. Let the body be completely relaxed. Feel as if you going to take a nap for a few seconds. Stay in this relaxed conditions for three to five minutes.

• When you have rested for about five minutes get mentally alert. You are now going to do the seeding according to the method described below:

TECHNIQUE OF SEEDING THE MIND

• Remain lying on your back on the carpeted floor… keep your eyes closed… focus your mental attention on your toes… move mentally upwards towards the knees… then towards the thighs… the spine… then the neck… then move into the area of the mind… let the mind see the mind…When you have entered the area of the mind visualize clearly what has been done there during the previous session…

• let the mind now see how neat, clean and decent the mind appears after the garbage and filth have been removed and the whole area has been polished to shine brightly…the mind is free from the load of undesirable thoughts…there is now plenty of space in the mind for planting new thoughts…being free from what was undesirable…the mind is now ready to accept and hold what is given to it as new and desirable…

TECHNIQUE OF ACTUAL SEEDING

• Pick up mentally the seed which represents your Desire Number One in your right hand…take it to the cleaned area of the mind… and plant it there…imagine you are putting it underneath the mental soil and cover it up as a seed is put in the soil and covered… when the seed is planted properly…withdraw your hand gently…

• Now pick up seed number two which represents your Desire Number Two…take it into the area of the mind and plant it there at some distance from seed number one… put it underneath the mental soil properly… cover it up and then withdraw your hand…

• Then pick up the seed representing your Desire Number Three… take this seed into the area of the mind and plant it at some distance from the two previously planted seeds…plant it properly…

• Now see that all the three seeds representing your three basic desires have been planted properly…they are now rooted in the mind…let your mind see clearly how well the seeds have been planted there…feel the pleasure of doing something marvelous… unique…and new….this is the birth of a new idea and process in you… you are no longer the same person mentally… a big change has taken place in your mind…what was burdensome… undesirable… and filthy… has been discarded completely from the mind… what is pleasant… promising… and… rewarding… has been given place in the mind…let the mind feel the pleasure of this new event in your life…

• With these pleasant feelings… remain lying on the floor… in the same position for about one minute….then open your eyes slowly… Inhale and exhale deeply twice….now sit up gradually….then get up but make sure all your movements are slow for a few seconds…

GUIDELINES

• The seeding needs to be done only once. If you feel that the seeding was not done properly during the second session repeat it after giving a gap of 24 hours before the third session. Your third session (protection and care) should be performed within a week any time after two days of the second session.

THIRD SESSION (PROTECTION AND CARE)

After having done the seeding properly we now have to see that the seeds are well protected and get proper nourishment for their healthy growth. Special attention has to be given to protection of the seeds from possibly harmful elements. Various contradictory and opposing forces or elements are present in society, in nature and in the universe. They may harm your new creation-intentionally or unintentionally. They might injure your freshly planted seeds, if you leave them unprotected. You are therefore advised to use the following techniques to protect the plants.

PREPRATION FOR PROTECTING THE PLANTS

• Lie down on the floor on your back…relax completely…let every part of your body be loose and unrestrained…keep the eyes closed….breathe normally… now follow the technique of complete relaxation as you have done during the second session…remain in this relaxed position for about five minutes…

• After relaxing for the desired period be mentally alert and direct your mental attention towards your toes….move mentally towards the thighs... then towards the knees… the spine and the neck….then go to the areas of the head,..stay there for a few seconds….now move gently into the area of the mind….let the mind see the mind….stay there and watch attentively….what do you notice… the mind appears to be transformed...The filth and undesirable material is gone… three seeds representing your three important desires are planted there….they are in a good shape….they are about to sprout… they appear to be in a healthy condition and are very pleasing to look at…

• Imagine that you are going to put a fence around the seeded plants in your mind….after this fence has been erected the plants will be quite safe. ..no unfavorable and undesirable forces or elements will be able to intrude inside the fence….be mentally prepared… and… alert….draw a circle around the planted seeds in your mind… with your right index finger…..the circle will work as a fence…

• No disturbing elements on earth can come within the circle….the plants will remain safe therein….the seeds will sprout and grow properly…..they are soon going to become very strong and big….they will then be able to take care of themselves… now you have to see that they continue to get proper nourishment for their healthy growth…

ACTUAL TECHNIQUE TO PROTECT THE PLANTS

• Visualize mentally that our plants are getting the due nourishment… there is a supply of enough light… air… and moisture…the condition of the soil is healthy… and… good… your plants are getting the right amount of all these nourishing properties essential for their healthy growth... Feel the pleasure of this new development in you… something unique has taken shape... as the planted seeds grow and develop, you will see signs of fulfillment in days to come… now open your eyes slowly… breathe deeply twice… remain lying on the floor for a few seconds… then get up slowly… the third session ends here.

GUIDELINES

• Once the steps of protection have been taken, they need not to be repeated.
• Do not tell others what you have done on the mental level. Keep it a secret till the plants are fully grown trees.

FOURTH SESSION (WEEDING AND GROWTH)

The fourth session should be held two weeks after the second session. The time gap is necessary to let the seeds germinate and grow. During this session you are going to watch how the planted seeds are progressing and what needs to be done for their proper growth and development. It is just possible that some weeds may have also grown around the plants. The weeds need to be removed so that they do not stifle the growth of the plants.

PREPRATION FOR PULLING OUT WEEDS

• Lie down on the floor on your back…relax completely…let every part of your body be loose and unrestrained…keep the eyes closed….breathe normally… now follow the technique of complete relaxation as you have done during the second session….
• When the deep breathing is over, let the body be completely relaxed. Stay in this relaxed condition for about three minutes. Then get mentally alert and ready.

ACTUAL TECHNIQUE FOR PULLING OUT WEEDS

• Focus your mental attention towards the area of the head… let the mind enter into the area of your mind… stay there… let the mind see the plants in detail…they are at some distance from one another and look healthy... try to see if there are weeds around those plants… these weeds must be uprooted and thrown out…

• Imagine that you are taking your right hand into the area of the mind… bring your right hand within the circle… pull out the weeds one by one… pull them out gradually and patiently… do not rush… keep picking them out till all are uprooted….collect them and throw them out…

• Enter the area of the mind again… and see that… there is nothing left except those three seeded plants inside the circle… make the whole area quite neat and clean… see that the roots of the plants are properly covered by the soil… now the plants are free from the weeds… make the soil around the plants even and clean… then withdraw your hand from the circle slowly… keep your eyes closed…

• Look at the plants again… now what do you see… they are all healthy looking… they are quite safe and are growing nicely… there are no disturbing elements to obstruct their growth… they are getting proper nourishment.
• Let the mind see these aspects in detail… think of the pleasant development taking shape in your mind… feel the pleasure and happiness of visualizing these new developments. .. after visualizing the growth of the plants and thinking of these pleasant developments for a minute or so, open your eyes slowly… breathe deeply twice… remain lying on the floor for a few seconds… then get up slowly… the fourth session is over.

SUGGESTIONS FOR ALL THE TECHNIQUES

• Your work from the first to the fourth session is not to be repeated unless extremely necessary. However, if you wish to repeat certain aspects of these four sessions such as cleansing, nourishing and protecting, do it only once or twice a year at the most.

• The work you learnt and practiced during the four sessions is enough to restore your normal mental health. In fact for the restoration of your mental health cleansing was enough. The practice of seeding was to strengthen your mental health and power.

• By the steps of cleansing, the disorders of the mind are removed and by steps of seeding you have gained strength and at the same time prevented further disorder. What you have gained in terms of mental health and strength need to be sustained by you. This you can do by practicing meditation.

• If at a later date you have more desires you need not repeat this process if you are practicing meditation. The reason is that since your mind is already disciplined and trained, it is not difficult for the mind to hold any further new desires that you might have in future. The process of meditation helps you accomplish the fulfillment of those new desires. Steps of meditation will be explained in the next article.

 Courtesy: Dr. Rita Khanna

Aum Shanti