Saturday, February 06, 2010

Master of Mahavidyas

Being born is the most traumatic experience for every creature and in that phenomenal instant a deep fear grips the infant that it has been expelled from the warm, dark recess of a heaven into an open jungle where dangers lurk everywhere around. But soon the warm feeling returns and as it nuzzles up to its mother's blossom its lips greedily start to suck at the source of divine nectar. It's then that it heaves a sigh of relief and known that it is safe in the loving arms of its mother.

Mother or Ma, the word itself spells warms, love, compassion and divinity. In its innocence the child knows that it shall escape the worst of calamities till it has this living epitome of motherly love cuddling it swooning over it.

And even when he grows up, deep down man continues to be a child and whenever ordeals of life become too much to bear he calls out to the Almighty, the Guru. It's in fact the Mother he is yearning for and when the desire intensifies to such a level that all one wants is Her divine love, she manifests in the form of the Ten Mahavidyas - Kali, Bagalamukhi, Tara, Shodashi, Bhuvaneshwari, Kamala, Matangi, Chinnmasta, Tripur Sundari and Dhoomavati. Needless to say these are the motherly manifestations of the formless Divine, the Guru.

To know one is to know the other and this I came to realise through a marvellous experience. From my very early childhood I nurtured a very sweet thought, germinated perhaps due to effect of some Sadhanas done in my previous life, that the protective hand of the mother always kept at bay all dangers in my life. With such a strong belief there in my mind it was but natural for me to be pulled towards the Sadhanas of the Mahavidyas.

My search for true and authentic Sadhanas took me to wild and virtually inaccessible places. I gathered several pearls of precious knowledge chief among which was that the highest accomplishment of a spiritual life is gaining entry into Siddhashram, the divine invisible Himalayan hermitage, that is the abode of various great souls like Vasisht, Atri, Kannad, Pulatsya, Gautam Shankaracharya and Krishna. But access to this place is not so easy and there are only two ways to enter it - either through grace of a Yogi of Siddhashram or by the means of Siddhi of any two of the Ten Mahavidyas.

The day I struct upon this valuable piece of information I decided to devote my whole life to the search of some Yogi who had perfected the Sadhanas of the Ten Divine Mothers. My search took me to Varanasi where I met a lean Sadhu whose face radiated with an ethereal glow. Day-long the Yogi would remain closeted in his hut on the bank of Ganges, coming out only in the morning for a dip in the river.

I was not able to decide how to speak to him for I did not wish to disturb him. But one day gathering courage I entered his hut where I found him seated in Padamasan. I sat downnearby and it was two hours before he opened his eyes.

"Welcome son! I have been waiting for you." His voice was wonderfully mellifluous. Instantly I bowed in his feet. "Come on," he said smiling at me, "you are a brother to me. Why, have you forgotten?"

What he then told me filled me with intense joy. According to him both of us had been disciples of same Guru in our previous lives and we had lived together for several years. It was great to know that I had a Guru, a teacher, a spiritual master. Cheityanyanand, for that was the name of the Yogi, was a Siddh of Mother Kali and noticing my interest in the Mahavidya Sadhanas he revealed some very secret facts related to Kali Sadhana.

After a few days of sojourn with the Siddh of Kali I started off towards Harhwal. Come to think of it now, I am sure that some divine power was directing my feet, for I reached a very ancient temple which stood next to a pond. It was completely empty except for a three foot tall stone idol. Layers of dust on it made it beyond recognition. Curiousity compelled me to clean it and from beaneath the mounds of dirt emerged a beautiful statue of Kali. I was overjoyed by this piece of luck and decided to try the Kali Sadhana gifted to me by Cheitanyanand.

However success was not easy to come. Two months passed and four times, I had to face failure. I sat down for the Sadhana a fifth time, deciding to succeed or leave the place forever if I failed yet again.

It was the final day of Sadhana. No positive result seemed forthcoming, yet there was a hope that something would happen as soon as I recited the Mantra a last time. However the hope was dashed once again as abject failure greeted me in the end. In desperation I got up and rushed out of the temple cursing Cheitanyanand for giving me a useless Mantra, cursing myself for having undertaken such a foolish venture, cursing the Mother for teasing Her child, and above all cursing the Guru who should been there guiding me.

"Where are you?" I cried out loud but the only answe I got was my echo which resounded in the still night.

It was then that something in me went berserk. I ran inside and picked up the idol of Goddess. Rushing outside I threw it into the pond. All I expected was a large splash, instead there was a loud explosion and blinding light. From it emerged a feminine form and as I watched with bated breath the same figure which had been the idol came to life.

It was the Mother, the Goddess Kali, her divine form hovering over the water surface. The explosions and fireworks continued even as one by one other forms of the Goddess emerged from the image of Kali, till the Ten Mahavidyas had manifested in full ethereal glory.

For two months I had been trying to summon the Mother and I had failed. And when I had become desperate the Ma Kali had suddenly let flow her compassion and instead of just one for She had made all Ten Divine Forms appear. I was completely overwhelmed by this sudden shower of grace and tears flowed out of my eyes. It was all the work of my Guru, I know, and now I yearned to see him.

Even as this thought flashed in my mind there was yet another explosion. Above the Ten Goddesses a bluish-white globe of divine light had appeared. It seemed to pull all the ten forms towards itself and as I watched in surprise one by one the Mahavidya merged into the coruscating sphere and then the mass of light started to grow in size and expand till it had assumed a human form. There was another flash and a divine Yogi stood before me. He has large beautiful eyes, a bright forehead, huge chest, strong arms, long flowing tresses and a tall, fair complexioned physique.

Then out of nowhere in particular the following verse started to echo.

Brahmaand Swaroopayam Nikhilah Nikhileshwaraha
Taneiev Samanupeetaah Va Dashavidyaa Sukeertitaa

"O Mahayogi Nikhileshwar Paramahans, the whole universe resides in your supreme form. Even the Ten Mahavidyas are a part of your being."


As I heard these words another voice rang clear inside - "This is your Guru, the heart and soul of Siddhashram, Paramahans Swami Nikhileshwaranand, whom even Gods yearn to see."

Tears filled my eyes and perhaps having read my mind he walked over the surface of the pond to where I stood. The next moment I was in his feet, crying my heart out. And then his fingers touched my spinal cord, sending waver wave of spiritual ecstasy flowing through my body.

Caressing my head he pulled me up and said, "Why do you cry, son? You wished to attain in Mahavidya Sadhanas. Are you happy now?"

What wonderful moments of my life were those! I had been dying to have glimpse of the Divine Mother and there I was standing before my Gurudev who carried all the Ten Forms of the Mother hidden in his own form.

My joy knew no bounds and my tears seemed unstoppable. Gurudev gently led me inside and asked to sit in Padamasan. As I did so, I felt his thumb come and rest on my Third Eye. Again there was a flash and then all became still. My body grew lighter and I quietly slipped deep into Samadhi.

When I finally emerged from the state of trance, the sun rays were playfully dancing on the surface of the pond outside. I felt greatly uplifted remembering the past night's experiences. More than all that I was delighted to have met my spiritual mentor who assimilated the essence of all the Divine Mothers in his Self. And in that wonderful state of divine ecstasy I could hear my heart sing out.

Vatsalya Bhaavbharitah Dayan Dakshinya Tanmayah
Matriroopah Guru Sakshaat Saangalyah Brham-sanvidah

ie. Paramahans Swami Nikhil is the Absolute Master of the Ten Mahavidyas and these are but his own Divine Powers.

- Mantra-Tantra-Yantra Vigyan, Nov 98

3 comments:

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