The 10 Forces of Self
This is a sub-cycle of teachings within the Greater Cycle of Teachings called the Ātmaśakti (or Soul Power) Cycle of Teachings and Practices.
In Trika Mahāsiddha Yoga, the spiritual journey from ignorance to total enlightenment is characterized by the practitioner traversing through three multi-step phases. The three phases are called Self, Time and Light.
The "Self" phase of the path is concerned with:
- Developing a solid base of health and vitality
- Cultivating basic sanity
- Becoming emotionally non-reactive
- Ceasing conduct that perpetuates limiting karmas
- Gaining a basic understanding and control of the mind as the ultimate creator of our reality and spiritual attainment
- Creating a masterful expression of one's nadi or purpose in life
Maximizing the experience of the Self is a matter of learning to optimize the 10 Forces that comprise us. Our "Self" is called the Ksetrajha, Jivatmasakti or Nirmanakaya in Sanskrit. All of these names for the self, point to the Self being a "container" for the experience of our life. That is a dynamic field of consciousness rather than a solid hunk of flesh pondering through a world of objects. The Self is one of our three "bodies". In ancient Indian systems of Tantrik Yoga these bodies were represented by the symbol of the trident. All three are actually one in nature with three different modes of being or expression. The self has the potential to become aware of its relationship to the other two bodies and in doing so resolve the experience of suffering and re-birth. When this occurs there becomes a felt cohesion of the three bodies as one. For this cohesion to be experienced and for us to attain a level of contentment based on the wisdom of our true nature it is very helpful to understand the 10 dynamic forces that actually are the self or jivatmasakti and to cultivate them on a daily basis. The foundation that is created by daily attention to the 10 forces is the key to stabilizing each developmental stage of the path. This foundation gives us a home base or launching pad from which to explore the subtler aspects of our being.
Many students of nondual Dharma traditions diligently practice meditation and yoga but make the mistake of jumping over the crucial work on the "Self" or Jivatmasakti. Work on the Self is often seen as too materialistic or gross. The common reaction to learning about the Jivatmasakti teachings and practices is. "I thought we were trying to get rid of the self? How can making myself more powerful actually help my spiritual progress?" The fear is that through developing power the practitioner will get seduced by the power itself and desire to cultivate more power for its own sake, and will then lose sight of the goal. Of course this could be true for someone practicing piecemeal outside of a systematic path, but Trika Mahāsiddha Yoga is a well-laid out, time tested and integrated path. The power developed in the Self phase of the spiritual path seamlessly fuels the intermediate and advanced stages of practice in the same way that the large booster engines of a rocket ship get the spacecraft outside of the strong gravitational pull of the earth and are then discarded when no longer needed for deep space travel. When we fail to recognize the importance of the Self in forming a solid foundation for our path not only can we get lost in the impotency of transcendentalism, but the overall trajectory of our spiritual practice is often experienced as alternating cycles of progress and stagnation or retrogression. Being endlessly caught in these alternating cycles depletes our inborn energy reserves and the spiritual path begins to take on the characteristics of a heroic Herculean struggle instead of the natural process it can and should be. Without cultivating Ātmaśakti's 10 Forces it is difficult to gain the type of momentum that we need in our self-experience in order to smoothly and progressively open into our inherent and blissful Being.
In this training you will learn each of the 10 Forces and some methods to cultivate each one using the three doorways of your body, speech/energy and mind.
SELF GUIDED SERIES
- This course was recorded during a live online training in 2020.
- This course is a subset of the Ātmaśakti Cycle of Teachings & Practices.
- Student Q & As are included.