? American Hidden Tantra?
for a sample, here is a chapter from Marta Szabo's blog. Read it and the comments.
One thing that is very interesting is the matter of whether to keep using the mantra (OM Nama Shivaya) one learned in Siddha Yoga, or to give it up.
If LGAT tech was incorporated into a seemingly ancient Hindu praxis which SY claimed to be, then it may be that repeating that mantra, as many who left craved to do, would re-trigger what was entrenched.
Some noted that they tried other yoga schools and couldnt find any satisfaction because...their mantras was different.
And its interesting that one person butted in and claimed the mantra made no difference and put the onus on the craving seeking mind of the sufferer...which deflects attention from examining the all the 'tech' used covertly in Siddha in those early days.
Some with more acuity warn that a mantra can enslave the mind if imparted by a tantric teacher.
LGAT tech could perhaps be called American black magic.
Magic is when we dont see the actual chain of cause and effect, not because we are stupid, and not because we are greedy, but because the actual step by step chain of cause and effect is hidden from us by those who have led us into the toils.
I started to look at other yoga schools. I read ferociously books by Swami Sivananda, the swamis of the Ramakrishna Order, Swami Satyananda, books on Ramana Marharshi and his school of yogic thought..... I gained insight into Hinduism and what yoga is really about.....
I visited various ashram of the above and even did a couple of short courses to find out more about their schools.
But I couldn't bring myself to join another yoga school. The customs and chants were too different. I wasn't about to learn all the new bhajans and chants and customs all over again. And I hated having to explain to people that I wasn't exactly a complete novice in meditation, and yet new to their path..... And I was in no mood to join in the activities of the devotees of these yoga schools, and so I was a loner in their midst for brief times. I was f***ed!
And yet I simply couldn't give up on my quest, or my Self.
And gradually I restartd meditating, on my breath, on Soham which is universal and does not require any initiation from any Guru. Somehow or other it gradually dawned on me Om Namah Shivaya does not belong to SY. It is the initiation mantra of all Shaivites through time immemorial.....
Tentatively I allowed Om Namah Shivaya to resume repeating itself in my meditation. I began to do japa in earnest again.....
The mantra I find the most wonderful and powerful: it is my real Self; it is my Inner Guru. It purifies my nadis, and removes psychological/emotional blocks. It helps me forgive myself and others. I gets me centred and helps me breathe slower and deeper.
Om Namah Shivaya: it is the supreme mantra of the Universe which is my Inner Self. It belongs to no one. It cannot be trademarked or copyrighted. No one can make money out of it without dire consequences. It belongs to God. It belongs to all.
Om Namah Shivaya.
March 8, 2008 2:04 PM
Thank you to those explaining in detail how they have resumed their practice. Your experiences are very familiar. I cannot get rid of Om Namah Shivaya, it plays constantly in my head. As was described it seems ridiculous to have to begin again on creating meditation disciplines when one already has an established practice. It really helps me to hear descriptions of your recovery. BTW I totally s**t on myself over SY, because I allowed particularly egregious abuse to occur both from Gurumayi and George Afif. At the same time I received so much. It is this kind of dissonance that has made recovery so hard.
One issue coming into focus however is that I seem to need a relationship with a personal God. Baba, Gurumayi were personal to me. Shiva is just not so personal or maybe I need to understand him in a different way. At any rate it sure would be relaxing to let go of stopping the ever present mantra.
March 11, 2008 7:15 AM
Also..regarding the mantra om namah shivaya: I would suggest that anyone who is still using it post-siddha yoga educate him/herself in tantric mantra sadhana so that he/she understands exactly what is going on when the mantra is repeated endlessly. "An informed consumer is the best consumer".
Yes. But...the one thing no one seemed to consider was what could happen if an ancient Hindu mantra were inculcated along with Werner Erhard's EST technology.
Then Om Namah Shivaya, implanted along with that tech would be a different Om Namah Shivaya than that same mantra learned from a clean organisation that was not covertly exposing its trustful devotees to EST technology.
One person in this dialogue tried to put the onus on the people, which neatly deflects from examining the implications of Muk's friendship with Werner Erhard, and the use of EST tech by Muktnananda:
I seem to need a relationship with a personal God.
It's vital for everyone to have relationship with a personal God. The point is which person to see as God. Why not try to make it the person you're relating to right now? It doesn't matter who it is: they're already God, 100%.
regarding the mantra om namah shivaya: I would suggest that anyone who is still using it post-siddha yoga educate him/herself in tantric mantra
Mantra has enormous power. It may sometimes be useful to understand where that power comes from. The source of the power comes from 3 thing: (1) the time and effort you put into it, (2) the belief you have in it, and (3) the intention, the reason why you repeat the mantra.
Look into these 3 factors. Anything else is an irrelevent distraction. The words of the mantra you happen to use make no difference.(C notes:None of these three factors includes examining the social context or the covert use of LGAT tech. Or why it was that so very many SY devotees were attracted to using LGATs along with their participation in SY, as commented on in the AOL discussion dited above)
Further down, someone commented:
March 13, 2008 5:07 PM
“… the connection to gurumayi and muktananda which I do not want in my "system" in any way. If I were doing mantra sadhana, I would view om namah shivaya as "polluted" (within that system) because of how I received it and under what circumstances: I did a great deal of mantra japa (in Fallsburg and GSP with swamis and others I now consider people I do not want any kind of association with).My reaction might be a little strong because of things I've observed since leaving siddha yoga.”
Thank you for writing that comment Mantra Anon. I think the crux of the matter for some of us is if pollution of the ONS mantra extends beyond merely psychological associations. Various forms of generic explanations of deity worship and mantra methodology are readily available out there. What seems elusive is an explanation of how a tantric adept like Muk, or perhaps Chid to a lesser extent, could infuse the ONS with some kind of power that works on the mind/body of the repeater in pre or parapsychology.
As you probably know, SY explained mantra awakening as facilitated by an occult process called guru caitanya mantra, i.e. the guru’s power enlivens the mantra making it readily available to the devotee who otherwise might have had to engage in hundreds of thousands of repetitions to garner the same effect. I read a book by Swami Rama who attested that certain Himalayan yogis “realized” specific mantras that granted the repeater small siddhis, and that these mantras could be passed full strength to another. Still, I haven’t come across anything to indicate that this caitanya process can be extended to tens of thousands of devotees, very often through the conveyance of an impersonal mantra card no less. In a way, to suspect that the ONS is esoterically polluted is to accept the notion of a caitanya like effect, only in this case the caitanya influence has certain malevolent qualities – entrapment over liberation.
There isn’t much to go on in the traditional literature to suggest that even an adept can esoterically cast his influence over a mantra initiated to many thousands. It would take a tremendous amount of will to bring that kind of intention to fruition. Please let me know if I’ve overlooked something; it’s entirely possible. The idea of a malevolently charged caitanya mantra rings true in a way that’s hard to put a finger on.
Any comments and or substantiations are appreciated. Thanks.
March 14, 2008 10:14 AM
C replies study the LGAT tech.
"LGATs (Large Group Awareness Trainings) were all the rage when I was growing up in the 70s. They include Werner Erhart's now-defunct est, its successor The Forum (aka Landmark Education), Lifespring, and many spin-offs. I've never attended these, though the many Intensives I experienced with Swami Muktananda were heavily influenced by Werner, and gave me a strong taste of the group dynamic. The Truth about Human Potential Seminars is a blog covering the LGATs; The Awareness Page offers many links they say will help Awareness consumers make conscious informed decisions; and Rick Ross' site has the video Voyage to the Land of the New Gurus, a 2004 French TV report with hidden cameras inside an actual Landmark training.
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/29/2008 11:11PM by corboy.