Thursday, December 2, 2010

Anatomy of Here and WOW

From the The Here and WOW Story by Char Tara Albert
Where Horizontal “Here” means Time and Vertical “WOW” means Space
A Story where the Time/Space Intersection
Marries the Universal/Personal Creative Juncture

*For more information see my June Blog Post – (1) The River of Satva – The Path of Illumination *The Vibration of Now and Its Location

*The theories expressed here are gleamed from the yogic tradition plus my personal interpretations. My primary information source for this article is from Light on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali by B. K. S. Iyengar which sheds light on the microcosmic structure of the human being as a reflection of macrocosmic universal energy. I am a student of yoga; my understanding is ever evolving so please forgive any immaturity. Page references refer to Light on the Yoga Sutras. Sanskrit words are offered to attune our minds to the origin of these teachings and their core signature vibration. Take whatever wisdom works for you for now. Leave the rest to ponder on a rainy day.

This article addresses a question -
Can the wisdom of yoga help us to manifest abundance, health and greatness?

Yogic Creation Theory and the 3 Gunas – A Play in Time

Accordingly to yoga, in the beginning, the universe spun out of one all-encompassing, united, non-defined universal force which then subdivided into the 3 gunas or speeds of movement. Thus time, contrast of forces and the axis of “here” was play-crafted into being.

1. Satva – illumined central speed pathway – pure white – essence of purity
2. Rajas – hyperactive/hot or fast speed pathway - vibrancy
3. Tamas – underactive/cool or slow speed pathway – inertia

The 5 Elemental Notes – A Play in Space

Energy then further subdivided into the 5 basic elements which are the building blocks of all creation. Thus space was crafted. It was very WOWish and expansive in nature, so I nicknamed it WOW. The elemental notes express themselves through sentient beings through the 5 organs of perception better know as the 5 senses:

1. Earth – Smelling
2. Water - Tasting
3. Fire - Seeing
4. Air - Feeling
5. Ether - Hearing

Patanjali, author of the original Yoga Sutras, writes that the manifested universe is composed of the blended combination of the 3 gunas (time) and the 5 elements (space). This causes a pulsation between the universal creator, called Brahman in Sanskrit, to the individual creator, the seer, the soul called “atman” in Sanskrit. The universal and individual are married to each other eternally by inherent design. The juncture of these 4 aspects, time/here, space/wow, universal being and personal being causes “The Vortex of Now”, a space of Holy Wow Now where thought seeds begin to grow and congeals into tangibility. Knowing how to align these four vectors and access the creative vortex therefore should theoretically allow us to more easily grow “things from thoughts”.

The Vortex of Now and Its Portal in Human Biology

In the human anatomical body the 3 gunas are localized thus:
1. Satva – fire channel, susumna, center of the spinal column
2. Rajas – sun channel, pingala nadi/left brain, right side of body
3. Tamas – ida nadi/right brain, left side of body
Satva, rajas and tamas vibrational lines of energy weave in and out of the 7 chakras or energy wheels located inside the spinal column, first named by ancient yogis. The chakras, centers of transformative energy, align with vital nerve bundles and affect the endocrine glands in the human anatomy. The chakras transform energy circulating between the 7 sheath bodies called kosas in yoga. The 7 kosas vibrate at finer, more subtle to grosser, heavier levels.

The 7 Kosas or Shining Sheaths
7 Coats of Vibration – The Harmonically Aligned Being Has Well-Calibrated Kosas

Satva, rajas and tamas in balance circulate energy between the 7 kosas allowing for healthy functioning of the body, mind and emotions. A vital and well-charged energy system is the result. Deficient energy systems lead to downward dramatic spirals of all kinds so this is important! The 7 levels of vibrational sheaths correspond to the 5 elemental notes.

The 5 elements are most concentrated in the 7 kosas as thus: (pg 51 & pg 141)
1. Earth – physical body – anatomical level – Annamaya Kosa
2. Water – physiological body - physiological level – Pranamaya Kosa
3. Fire – psychological body - mental - Manomaya Kosa
4. Air – intellectual body - intellectual – Vijnanamaya Kosa
5. Ether – Body of Joy - blissful – Anandamaya Kosa
6. Xxxxx* – Body of Consciousness – Cittamaya Kosa
7. Xxxxx* – Body of the Self – Atmamaya Kosa
*Xxxxx refers to undivided consciousness prior to the gunas and elemental divide.

To bring this down to earth, brain lobe locations for the kosas are assigned.

Anatomy of Here and WOW – Seats or Central Positions of Kosas - (pg 100)

1. Ananamaya & Pranamaya Kosa
Anatomical & physiological - frontal brain – seat of logic
2. Manomaya Kosa
Mental - back of brain – seat of reasoning
3. Vijnanamaya Kosa
Intellectual - base of brain – seat of imprints of pleasure & pain
4. Anandamaya Kosa
Blissful - top of brain

Hatha yoga poses (physical type), especially as designed by Mr. Iyengar - which includes inversions and restorative yoga - improves circulation of prana especially in the skull thus aiding right and left brain balance. The skull is an area that gets easily jammed due to hyperactive or dull thinking patterns. That is how the forces of hot raja energy and cool tamas energy manifest in how we think. Functioning of the body reflects the imbalances. Pranayama, pure yogic breath practice, is a highly effective way to know, flow and grow pranic universal energy thus enhancing communication through all 7 kosas.

Trouble in Wowland – When Ego is Driving the Earth Ship!
The 5 Afflictions are called Klesas in Sanskrit

The kosas are designed to dance in harmonic balance expressing the will of the atman, soul within. In yoga theology the non-synchronized state of being manifests as 5 “Klesas” – afflictions. Trouble begins with the root cause, where consciousness of being veers away from the central point where the time/space vortex, the Holy Wow Now and the power of creation really exists. Soul then forgets and looses it finesse in the art of manifestation.

Avidya – Ignorance of Self, want of spiritual knowledge, lack of wisdom
Through forgetfulness of one’s true self and one’s creative power, the seer gets lost in the creation. Avidya begins the downward descent into ignorance. Avidya is the root cause of the obstacles that prevent us from recognizing things as they really are.

The obstacles begin to multiply:

Asmita – Pride, egoism, I consciousness
The first branch of avidya is asmita which pushes us into thoughts of “I need to be better than others. I must dominate others because I know I am right. I am driven to do so. I am obsessed with stories of me and rightly so. Me, me, me - its all I can see!”

Raga – Desire, attachment, pleasure
The second branch of avidya is raga which expresses itself in making demands. The thinking is “I want more and more because it was pleasurable yesterday even if I don’t need it now. I am not satisfied with what I have now. My desire is unquenchable.”

Dvesa – Aversion, hate, dislike
The third branch of avidya is dvesa, the opposite of raga. Dvesa expresses itself by rejecting self, people and things for fear they will bring pain. The thinking is “I am resistant and hostile (aggressively or passively) because either I sense a threat or I am uncertain of something new. I play lots of sneaky ego games to get even. I can put on the brakes or change plans. I can cause others stress and attempt to suppress their growth. I don’t listen well. I generate toxic energy to poison others. I resist learning and growth.”

Abhinivesa - Clinging to life, fear of death, intentness of affection
The fourth branch of avidya is abhinivesa, which is perhaps the most secretive expression aspect due to its undermining effect on our self-image. A poor self-image threatens our sense of survival causing the ego to build complex masks to hide this aspect. The thinking is “I am afraid, insecure, under constant stress and constantly fatigued. Life seems to be after me! I am afraid I am not okay where I am in life, with my body, my work or my family. I am afraid of being judged and not loved. I am resisting aging and death whether I know it or not. I cannot rest and feel trapped. I have to pretend and compensate in order to survive, I am miserable and exhausted.”

Brain locality of the 5 Klesas are listed as thus: (pg 112)

1. Avidya - Front of Brain – the seat of logic
2. Asmita – Top Brain – the seat of the individual self
3. Raga & Dvesa – Base of the Brain (hypothalamus) – subconscious brain
4. Abhinivesa – Back of Brain (archaic brain) – unconscious brain

There are fascinating correlations between these locations and modern brain science which I will explore in future blogs. These teaching extend back at least 5000 years since Patanjali’s Sutras were based on earlier Vedic books in India.

Entering Freedom’s Gate - Practical Applications on the Tract to Samadhi
Samadhi is a state of being, an absorption where the dream of separation ceases for a moment or more – depending on the capacity we have developed or inherited.

The value of accurate knowledge acts as a beacon on the road to knowing what our soul knows. The seed, the seer, the soul, atman is attempting to communicate through our layers of being, via the 7 kosas. It is soul’s nature to be free, to be at peace and to express joy! Yoga was designed as an eight-fold process in order to balance the flow between all 7 kosas. That is why it is important to practice yoga as a system rather than to practice separate components. For instance, I found that it did not work out well for me to be practicing physical yoga and breathing exercises without understanding and utilizing the practice of pratyahara.

Applying the eight-fold path of yoga*
as organized by Patanjali in The Yoga Sutras.
Here is a recipe for how to apply yogic practices for harmonic alignment.

*For a more complete description on the eight fold path of yoga – visit my blog
Freedom’s Blog Part 2 – October Post at

Pg 126 Iyengar quote, “The seer is clothed in five sheaths (CTA Note: the 2 most inner sheaths -6/7 - are not categorized as having a physical location), by the elements of nature: earth, water, fire, air and ether. Earth represents the anatomical, water the physiological; fire the mental, air the intellectual and ether the spiritual sheaths. The organs of action and senses of perception aid the sakhaka (student) in purifying the anatomical and physiological sheaths through yama (social disciplines) and niyama (personal disciplines). Asana, (physical yoga) pranayama (breath practice) and pratyahara (regulation of the senses) divest the seer of the mental sheath; dharana (concentration) and dhyana (meditation) cleanse the intellectual sheath. Samadhi (absorption into oneness) brings the seer out through the prison-gates of all the sheaths to experience freedom and beatitude.

Author’s Summary

“Here”, a name for time or duration of moments joins with “WOW”, a name for space where the painting of creation unfolds. The aligned juncture of Here and WOW allows for access to the swirling portal of Holy Wow Now where energy folds and unfolds in a natural rhythmic pulsation between the universal aspect of self and the personal version of self, the atman. For me this is the frontier of Wowland I love to play upon!

Regular practice of the holistically designed eight-fold path of yoga which includes knowledge of the three gunas, the five elements, the seven kosas and the four brain lobe locations may lead toward increased effectiveness in achievement. Accomplishments bring growth and growth renews our fortitude and strength. Especially application of samyama – an integration of focus, meditation and absorption - can lead us to become more at ease and enjoy whatever we are doing. Growth must be earned and cannot be forced. Patience, practice, caring and love of life brings forth the fruiting of our tree of yoga when the factors are ripe.

Yoga is the ability to direct the mind towards an aim and maintain the momentum without distraction. Yoga is the state where we can still the fluctuations of the mind so we may both rest and enjoy peace. Proper use of yoga leads towards higher achievement in any field of endeavor and has the potential to mend all relationships. Yoga is the delightful rejoining of body, mind and soul.

I extend my unconditional love to all and my strong intention that we may culture our individual and collective consciousness into heightened global body/mind awareness and find peace and plenty here on Earth as it in Wowland.

*Email me for a free copy of The Anatomy of Here and WOW Summary Table