Painting by Drew Brophy
Sadhguru, a modern day mystic and self-realized yogi talks about the geometry of the human energy system and the journey from conclusions to confusion to consciousness in the interview below.
How Your Energy System and Imagination Are Connected
Sadhguru: There is a certain geometry to the physical existence and to the energy existence. Everything in the universe, from the atomic to the cosmic, works the way it does because of geometric perfection. One of the most fundamental and the most stable forms in geometry is a triangle. In the human energy system, there are two equilateral triangles – an upward-pointing one below, and a downward-pointing one above. Normally, these two triangles meet just above the anahata. To work with your mind and imagination, it is important to adjust the alignment of the two triangles at least to some extent. The ideal alignment would be that the upward-pointing and the downward-pointing triangles intersect to such an extent that they form a perfect six-pointed star with six equilateral triangles on the outside.
With the necessary alignment, you will be able to exercise your imagination in such a way that you can manifest what you want outside of you. To enhance the power of your imagination, you need to lift the upward-pointing triangle, which in terms of the geometry of the body is the foundation, to such an extent that it includes the vishuddhi, which is the basis of your imagination. There is sadhana to move it up and hold it there, all the time. If you do not have such sadhana, a simple way to achieve this is not to eat for a period of time. Generally, when the stomach is empty, the upward-pointing triangle tends to rise by itself. Once you eat, it descends again.
Painting by Destiny Schafer
The Importance of Keeping the Chakras Mobile
There are one hundred and fourteen chakras in the body. The seventy-two thousand nadis, or energy pathways in the system, have one hundred and fourteen significant junction points, where the nadis meet in substantial numbers and redistribute themselves. These points are generally known as chakras, which literally means “wheel” or “circle,” though they are actually triangles. We call them “chakras” because that suggests movement – moving forward. Out of these hundred and fourteen, two are outside of the physical realm. For most human beings, these two are very feeble, unless they put in the necessary sadhana. Out of the remaining one hundred and twelve chakras, a few are generally located in certain parts of the body, on a physiological level. The rest of the chakras could be moving to some extent.
The way the chakras move depends on what you do with yourself. If you want to empower yourself to do different types of activities and to adjust to different type of situations, the pranic physiology or the chakra physiology of the body needs to be able to adjust accordingly. Doing the necessary work to keep the chakras mobile is important because the mobility of the chakras determines how flexible and effective you are in different types of situations, in order to meet different types of requirements. The problem with most human beings is in one situation, they function well. In another situation, they are a total mess. This is because they can only think, feel and act in a particular way.
You should be able to do everything well, with a little practice. But this will not work if your energy system is rigid. So, keeping your system mobile is important, not just because we want to do different kinds of activities in the world. It also gives you a certain flexibility of experience, that you are comfortable in any kind of situation. To be at ease, your energies must be flexible. These hundred and twelve chakras can be used as hundred and twelve doorways to your ultimate nature. That is why Adiyogi gave one hundred and twelve ways to attain to the ultimate.
To be able to move this complex triangular structure of your physiology the way you want it requires a different level of sadhana. But the most fundamental thing is that these two triangles should intersect. Normally, the upward-pointing triangle is below and the downward-pointing triangle is above. If you bring the two equilateral triangles to a point where they intersect in such a way that they form a star with six equilateral triangles, the system is in balance and becomes very receptive. My work is about presence and transmitting something, for which you need receptivity. My words are not going to enlighten you. I only say things to confuse you, because you cannot enlighten anyone by talking. It is the presence that has the power to transform.
Pyramid of Light. Painting by Krystleyez
From Conclusions to Confusion to Consciousness
Talking is a good tool only to destroy the idiotic conclusions that people have made. When conclusions are destroyed, confusion happens. Being joyfully confused about everything in the universe is a good state to be in. This means you are constantly paying attention to everything. Once you realize that you do not know a thing, you become receptive. If you have conclusions about everything, there is no possibility, no receptivity. If you have conclusions, you do not have to be attentive – you can go through life like you are dead. The more conclusions you have, the more rigor mortis there is in your mind and in your body as well.
If you are doing hatha yoga every day, you will notice that on a day when your attitude is kind of rigid, your body will not bend. On another day, when you are happy and mentally flexible, your body will bend much better. The nature of your consciousness is manifesting in every cell of your body, every moment of your life. That is why there are many kinds of self-inflicted diseases in the world today. Never before, human beings had as many food choices as we have today. In earlier times, people ate what was locally available. Today, in spite of so much variety, there is so much illness. In fact, the more choices people have, the sicker they get.
The United States is probably one of the countries with the greatest variety of food choices, but they also spend a huge amount of money on healthcare – three trillion dollars per year. That is a crime against humanity. If those who do not get sufficient nourishment are ill, it is understandable. But if those who are eating well are sick, it means something fundamental is going wrong. We have not understood that every cell in your body was created by the nature of your consciousness. If you do not know how to keep the nature of your consciousness well, you will not know how to keep your system well. Then you will function by accident, which need not be so.
We as human beings do everything that other creatures do too – we eat, sleep, reproduce, and die. One thing that distinguishes us is we are making a lot of fuss about all that, just as an aside. The most important difference about human beings is we can do all these things fully consciously. For example, you can eat fully consciously. Let us say you are hungry. If you were some other creature, you would just pick up whatever suits you and devour it. But as a human being, you are able to wait until mealtime, sit at the table, chant the invocation, and rather than stuffing your face with both hands, eat with your right hand. This is being conscious. If you go by the body alone, you will want to eat immediately. But since you have the necessary intelligence and awareness to hold back the compulsions of the body, you can respond to the situation in a conscious manner. If someone behaves very compulsively, they say he is like an animal. So, this is a journey from compulsiveness to consciousness.
Consciousness gives you the possibility to become free from your tendencies. Even if you have been ruled by all kinds of tendencies until this moment, if you respond fully consciously now, there will be a distance between you and the accumulated tendencies that you have. If you make every aspect of life conscious – not only in action, but also in thought, emotion, and energy – you will be on top of the world.
A version of this article was originally published in Isha Forest Flower.
Inner Engineering is a 7-session online course that provides tools and solutions to empower yourself to create your life the way you want it. The program has been designed by Sadhguru, a yogi, mystic, and one the foremost authorities on yoga. The course gives you simple methods that are the distilled essence of yogic sciences. The course imparts practical wisdom to manage your body, mind, emotions, and the fundamental life energy within. To learn more visit: innerengineering.com