"In Wonders We Sail, Questing for the Answers in Veil"

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Purana Giri In Almora

Another shrine, Purna Giri in the Almora district of the Himalayas, is famous for tantric practices of the samaya school.These tantrics do not employ any external means to awaken the primordial Shakti within; their method is purely meditative. The mountaintop itself is the shrine, and pilgrims who need a focus for their devotion pay homage to an ancient tree growing on the mountaintop. Purna Giri is one of the main pilgrimage sites for tantric adepts of the Shankaracharya order, and the practices undertaken here do not involve rituals. The goal of the practices, as described in the scriptures, is pure spiritual illumination without the slightest trace of worldliness. In fact the literal meaning of "Puma Giri" is "the mountain leading to perfection" or "the mountain that embodies perfect fulfillment."

According to the scriptures this shrine corresponds to the sahasrara chakra, or crown center, one of the principal centers of consciousness within the body. Just as the brain witnesses the actions it initiates without being involved in them, so must aspirants who undertake practices at this shrine help others without becoming involved with them. In order to see and understand itself the brain does not need help from outside; similarly, in order to gain a direct experience of the reality that resides at the crown center there is no need for external rituals at the Purna Giri shrine.

In contrast, rituals are a necessary component of the practices undertaken at the Kamakhya shrine in Assam, for that shrine is associated with the first and second chakras.Witnessing alone does not help in resolving and satisfying the issues related to the first and second chakras: hunger, fear,desire, and the urge for sense gratification. Those urges have to be dealt with more directly, in a manner that actually involves the senses, so transforming them into a spiritual means is the inner purpose of the rituals performed at Kamakhya. If this has not yet been accomplished there is no point in doing sadhana at Purna Giri.

All of the shrines discussed in here are centers of tantric practice and discipline. Their role is central.Studying at a recognized university ensures the quality of your education,and the knowledge gained there is expected to be definitive and reliable. That is also true of tantric studies. If you wish to acquire authentic knowledge, grounded in direct experience,you cannot overlook these shrines.Asking why these shrines are found only in India is like asking why Oxford is in England and Harvard is in Massachusetts. The site is appropriate to the practice.Academic institutions require buildings, labs, and libraries,but in the case of tantric institutions none of this external paraphernalia is required. The energy of these shrines is not confined to a particular physical structure, either natural or man-made. Rather, the space in the vicinity of a shrine is itself so charged with energy that it serves as an ever-present and fully furnished library and laboratory. Tantric practitioners who know how to tap into this energy can connect it with the corresponding energy within their own body and mind. And because space is indestructible, it makes no difference if temples and monasteries are constructed or destroyed. Nor does it make any difference if the physical characteristics of the site are completely altered. One of the names for Banaras, which is now one of the most congested cities in India, is still Ananda Vana (the forest of bliss). The collective consciousness of this holy place does not register bricks and mortar, noise and pollution: from time to time the city is built and destroyed;temples are replaced by mosques, which are replaced by temples;religious tensions and political unrest affect the minds of the residents - but such happenings have no effect on or in the space which is filled with divine consciousness. Seekers and adepts associate with that eternal Banaras - Kashi, the City of Light.


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