I am currently reading The Nag Hammadi Scriptures and it is not an easy read. It is a delight to read Jesus' teachings but with pages, lines, and words missing on top of everything being cloaked in parables and metaphors, it is a challenge to decipher the meaning behind the teachings. When I first started reading Lahiri Mahasaya's 108 teachings:
I noticed that several of the his sayings spoke directly about Khechari and thought Kechari must be important. I notice that when I read Jesus' teachings in the Gospel of Thomas that he keeps talking about making the two one:
22 Jesus saw infants being suckled. He said to his disciples, "These infants being suckled are like those who enter the kingdom."
They said to him, "Shall we then, as children, enter the kingdom?"
Jesus said to them, "When you make the two one, and when you make the inside like the outside and the outside like the inside, and the above like the below, and when you make the male and the female one and the same, so that the male not be male nor the female female; and when you fashion eyes in the place of an eye, and a hand in place of a hand, and a foot in place of a foot, and a likeness in place of a likeness; then will you enter the kingdom."
48 Jesus said, "If two make peace with each other in this one house, they will say to the mountain, 'Move Away,' and it will move away."
106 Jesus said, "When you make the two one, you will become the sons of man, and when you say, 'Mountain, move away,' it will move away."
As I wrote earlier, when Jesus is talking about making the two one, he is referring to balancing the Nadis (Ida and Pingala) so the prana travels up the Sushumna. I am extremely confident that when Jesus speaks of The Bridal Chamber that he is referring to the Nasal Pharynx area. This is where the union of male and female takes place. I am uncertain if he was referring to the Nadis or Kechari itself as the union. The Ida Nadi is called the lunar or female force in the body (dominate when the left nostril is flowing crosses and powers the right part of the brain - Sympathetic Nervous System) and the Pingala Nadi is called the solar or male force in the body (dominate when right nostril is flowing and powers the left side of the brain - Parasympathetic Nervous System). So Jesus' metaphor about making the male and the female one could be about balancing the Nadis or about putting your tongue (phallus) up your Nasal Pharynx (yoni). Kechari is instrumental in both interpretations.
Satyananda refers to these as the two opposite poles of energy in the physical body in this video starting at 10:30:
As I've stated many times, when you balance these two nadis and then practice Maha Bandha, your Kundalini turns on and the prana starts moving up the Sushumna. Keeping these Nadis balanced is essential in clearing up the Sushumna so the Chakras open and the Kundalini rises.
Because balancing these two poles of energy is so important, it is probably a good idea to have some understanding about how the nervous system works in the human body. (Taken largely from Wikipedia) Our nervous system consists of two main parts, the Central Nervous System and the Peripheral Nervous System. The Central Nervous System is the brain and the spinal cord or in yoga parlance, the Sushumna.
The Peripheral Nervous System is made up of two parts containing the Autonomic and Somatic Nervous Systems. The Somatic Nervous System or Voluntary Nervous System is associated with the voluntary control of the body movements via skeletal muscles. The Autonomic Nervous System is further broken into three main sub-systems: The Parasympathetic nervous system, Sympathetic nervous system and the Enteric nervous system. The Enteric nervous system is responsible for digestion and so really doesn't concern us from a yogic standpoint.
The Sympathetic and Parasympathetic Nervous systems are what is referred to in Yoga parlance as the Ida and Pingala Nadis. The Sympathetic Nervous System primes the body for action known as the Fight and Flight response. This keeps the energy and blood circulating to the skeletal muscles. The Parasympathetic Nervous System is for rest-and-digest" or "feed and breed. This keeps the energy and blood concentrated near the organs.
Sympathetic and Parasympathetic divisions typically function in opposition to each other. But this opposition is better termed complementary in nature rather than antagonistic. For an analogy, one may think of the Sympathetic division as the accelerator and the Parasympathetic division as the brake. The Sympathetic division typically functions in actions requiring quick responses. The Parasympathetic division functions with actions that do not require immediate reaction.
The Sympathetic Nervous System:
Promotes a "fight or flight" response, corresponds with arousal and energy generation, and inhibits digestion
Diverts blood flow away from the gastro-intestinal (GI) tract and skin via vasoconstriction
Blood flow to skeletal muscles and the lungs is enhanced (by as much as 1200% in the case of skeletal muscles)
Dilates bronchioles of the lung, which allows for greater alveolar oxygen exchange
Increases heart rate and the contractility of cardiac cells, thereby providing a mechanism for enhanced blood flow to skeletal muscles
Dilates pupils and relaxes the ciliary muscle to the lens, allowing more light to enter the eye and far vision
Provides vasodilation for the coronary vessels of the heart
Constricts all the intestinal sphincters and the urinary sphincter
NOTE you might have to hold down on the control button and the + buttion at the same time on your keyboard to enlarge the diagram to see it clearly - hold the Control button (Ctrl) and the - button to return to normal font
Notice that the Sympathetic Nervous System originates from the left side of the Sushmna. It flows into the left nostril ultimately crossing and powering the right side of the Brain.
The Parasympathetic Nervous System:
Promotes a "rest and digest or "feed and breed"" response, promotes calming of the nerves return to regular function, and enhances digestion
The parasympathetic nerves dilate blood vessels leading to the GI tract, increasing blood flow (this is important following the consumption of food, due to the greater metabolic demands placed on the body by the gut)
The parasympathetic nervous system can also constrict the bronchiolar diameter when the need for oxygen has diminished
Dedicated cardiac branches of the vagus and thoracic spinal accessory nerves impart parasympathetic control of the heart
During accomodation, the parasympathetic nervous system causes constriction of the pupil and contraction of the ciliary muscle to the lens, allowing for closer vision
The parasympathetic nervous system stimulates salivary gland secretion, and accelerates peristalsis, mediating digestion of food and, indirectly, the absorption of nutrients
The PNS is also involved in the erection of genital tissues via the pelvic splanchnic nerves 2?4.
The PNS is responsible for stimulating sexual arousal
Notice that parts of the Parasympathetic Nervous System flow directly into the Medulla Oblongata and the Pons. (It is not labeled as such on the Parasympathetic diagram but is on the Sympathetic diagram) I am extremely confident that the movement of the diaphragm powers up part of the Medulla Oblongata through the Cranial Nerve X (Vagus Nerve ? you were right Avatar186). This is responsible for our time based awareness. A baby that is still in its mothers womb and hasn't been given the ?gift? of breath yet is pure consciousness. It doesn't think about what it is going to do tomorrow or what happened yesterday. I wrote about this many posts ago:
Notice that information from each of the 5 senses and organs is going to The Mind (Medulla Oblongata and Pons) from two different sources, the pathways of both the Sympathetic and Parasympathetic systems. In the same way that a sound wave will hit the two ears at different times allowing your mind to determine where the sound originated from, these signals have to be reconciled in the mind and since they come in at slightly different time periods and possibly different voltages, they cause vibration or thought. The phrase ?Be Still and Know That I Am GOD? comes to mind again. The Third Eye (Ajna Chakra) does not utilize these systems to perceive the world.
I recently finished reading The Collected works of Sri Ramana Maharshi and one of Ramana's repeated themes is if you control the breath, you control the mind. I know my thinking process completely changed when my Kundalini turned on and the breath stopped. Time based reality is lost. Ramana says that you should sit in the breathless state focusing on your Anahata Chakra recognizing that that is you and you are before the mind separating the knot the binds the consciousness with the body. I like meditating on the heart center. I also like meditating flipping back and forth from Ajna to Anahata and then both at the same time. This is Jnana Yoga though and I identify more with Kundalini Yoga.
According to Satyananda, these two poles of energy rotate their dominance every 90 minutes to two hours according to the positioning of the sun and the moon. They both bring about body consciousness regardless which one of them is dominate. You need to make the two one to force the energy to travel up the Sushumna.
The Sushumna could be thought of as a clogged pipe and the prana is what clears it. Unfortunately for most people, these poles of energy are only balanced for a minute or two when the poles switch dominance and so very little spiritual progress is made without performing yogic exercises to keep them balanced. This is why Yogananda wrote that one Kriya Breath done properly gives the equivalent of a years worth of spiritual growth of a normal person.
As Jesus said in the Gospel of Thomas:
24 His disciples said to him, "Show us the place where you are, since it is necessary for us to seek it."
He said to them, "Whoever has ears, let him hear. There is light within a man of light, and he lights up the whole world. If he does not shine, he is darkness."
As long as our Sushumna is clogged, the energy cannot make it to the Third Eye (Ajna Chakra) and we live in darkness (Body Consciousness). I have read that the Third Eye literally turns on just like a light when it receives the proper energy from the Sushumna. As I've written before, I believe when the lower Chakras open enough energy will be supplied to the tongue to bust through the Tenth Gate and allow you to reach the Amrita. I believe the Amrita anesthetizes the Brainstem and the Third Eye opens. In order to turn on your Kundalini through Kriya practices, the diaphragm must be stilled. I believe opening up the Third Eye is similar in that all electricity flowing to the mind must be shut down.
It is extremely easy to balance your Nadis after you reach Kechari Stage 3. You just stick your tongue up the flowing nostril sealing it and force the air to flow through the closed nostril until it opens. My Nasal Pharynx area has changed dramatically in the last few months. When I first started entering the Turbinate areas, it felt like my tongue had to go up the pharynx, then make a 90 degree turn to enter the Turbinate area, and then another 90 degree turn to touch the Tenth Gate. Since my Turbinate areas have completely dilated, it feels like my tongue just goes straight up to touch the Tenth Gate.
After you balance your Nadis, you have to pick a nostril to stick your tongue in to touch the Tenth Gate. If you keep your tongue resting on the Nasal Septum (secret spot), the electricity does not flow as intense as it does when you touch the Tenth Gate. The book Swara Yoga says to try to keep the lunar force open during the day and the solar force open during the night. And so during the day after you balance your Nadis, keep the tongue in the Turbinate area of the right nostril and visa versa at night. That said you have to check every so often that your Nadis are balanced because the flap below your tongue could open up. The challenge that I have is that after a few minutes of touching the Tenth Gate with the tongue when my Nadis are balanced, the sensitivity is so intense that it makes me withdraw my tongue.
Then you get involved in doing other things and so throughout the day, I forget to keep my tongue up there. I need to buy a watch that beeps every 15 minutes to remind me to check my Nadis and keep the tongue in the appropriate nostril.
According to the Gnostics, Mary Magdelene was Jesus' wife and he kissed her on the mouth quite frequently in front of his other disciples. She was not the prostitute Jesus famously saved by his ?let him without sin cast the first stone? speech. Mary came from a very well to do family and was actually Jesus' benefactor and his most advanced disciple. If indeed she was his wife that makes a lot of sense. Ramakrishna's wife also became enlightened because she spent so much time in his presence with her aura taking on the characteristics of his aura due to their close proximity. All 12 of Jesus' historical disciples were married. Of course the Catholic Church could not tell the truth about Mary because this makes one really question the policy of not letting their priest marry and so they denigrated her. I have already written about my dismay over traditional Christian teachings and so no sense in beating a dead horse.
My Nauli has improved quite dramatically over the last month or so. I am developing a mind muscle connection that I lacked and am able to move the muscles in a different way. Several times I have gotten quite sore because I was too aggressive in using the muscles in a way they have never been used before. I had to take a couple of days off from pranayama and just meditate because of this. I've noticed that every time I practice Nauli, I defecate right afterward. Anything in my intestines gets cleared out. And I mean I am as clean as a whistle. I have read that Nauli massages the organs including the heart and heals (corrects, prevents) all diseases of the stomach and lower intestines. I have also read that over 90% of all the immune system's work is done in the intestines. Now I don't know how they come about that figure but suffice to say keeping the intestines clean is extremely important. You have all kinds of things living in you waiting for you to eat something so they can eat too. And so basically what I'm saying is that I think everyone should learn how to perform Nauli not only to open their Manipura Chakra but for their overall health as well!
I also think that Oil Pulling is extremely important. The eyes are the window to the soul and the mouth is the window to the body. Dental health is directly related to heart health. The Amrita is absorbed and enters the bloodstream directly under the tongue. You have colonies of bacteria and viruses living in your mouth waiting for you to eat something because they get to eat too. After these colonies reach a critical mass they enter the bloodstream underneath the tongue and look for other places in the body to live. Oil Pulling gets rid of these colonies of bacteria and viruses. I read a story about an oncologist (cancer doctor) that would not work on any patient that had a root canal until it was completely removed. (root canals have dead space in them that your immune system cannot get to ? the perfect place for viruses and bacteria to make a home) He did an experiment where he took fragments of a root canal from a patient that had cancer and surgically transplanted it into a rabbits mouth. All 30 rabbits that he did this to developed the very cancer that the donor patient had contracted. Another study did the same thing with heart attack patients with similar results, the rabbits had a heart attack within two weeks. And so basically what I'm saying is for your health, I think it is important to incorporate these two yoga techniques into your daily life. At least practice when you feel a sickness coming on. They both make you feel terrific after you do them and both should be done first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. Here is a link to information about oil pulling. You can learn how to do it in under 5 minutes. I personally use coconut oil.
I have also noticed that when I don't eat at night that the next morning's practice is a lot more intense. When there is no food in your system, the prana flows to where you want it to go. I have already lost over 10 pounds since going vegetarian and am somewhat conflicted by this knowledge as I've been thin my whole life. As Yogananda wrote in The Second Coming of Christ, true recognition of the Sabbath requires that you don't work the body including digestion which would imply fasting every Sunday. I have decided to only eat fruit when I get hungry after 8 pm as I want to make my Sadhana that starts at 4:30 the next morning as effective as possible.
I found this little gem in the Gheranda Samhita by Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati (Satyananda's foremost Disciple) page 318:
When the upper cavity of the palate is sealed by khechari mudra, the bindu or semen cannot be lost even if one embraces a beautiful woman. Even when there is movement of the bindu and it enters the genitals, it is seized by closing the perineum and taken upward. With the tongue directed upwards the knower of yoga drinks the fluid of the moon.
As I've written before, when I have an orgasm with my tongue pressing against the Tenth Gate sealing off one of the nostril's turbinate areas, I feel the orgasm taking place right at the Tenth Gate. There are muscle spasms in my penis but no ejaculation takes place. This causes the entire Turbinate area including my Nasal Septum to become extremely sensitive and I have to lower my tongue back into my mouth.
I hope somebody finds value in my ramblings.