Battle with Buddha

[Query] Which purana describes the story of buddha’s battle with maa durga?

No purANa describes such a story. Some Buddhist Tantras (especially the yoginI tantras) have borrowed wholeheartedly from Hindu Tantras. Similarly, the medieval, so-called Hindu Tantras have borrowed from Buddhist Tantras. This exchange has happened from both sides but both like to see themselves as the source. While Kashmiri Shaivaites see the influence of their Tantras in every nook and corner of the Buddhist Pantheon, sometimes quite outrageously for they have the benefit of their counterparts being unfamiliar with Hindu Tantras, the Buddhist scholars do the same, but with greater dignity most of the time. Authors such as Jayadratha and others portray Buddha and Buddhist deities as false gods; Buddhist works adopt a similar tone to demean various Hindu deities. One can refer to the works of brilliant scholars such as Geshe Rinchen, Reginald etc., who have comfortably disproved the flawed theories of others such as Alexis Sanderson who seek to establish Hindu Tantra as the single most source of a class of Buddhist Tantras. A brilliant team of scholars backed by H H Dalai Lama is currently engaged in bringing out a series of publications on Buddhist Tantras (especially those dear to vajrayana or mantrayana sects) and if I can go by the short preview I have seen, they are fantastic. Coming back to our story, in this nok jhok that took place, some cults in Kashmir created works that they named Tantras and came up with characters like tathAgatamardinI (durgA) and sugatasamhAriNI (kAlI). I even saw an idol of one such form being sold at an emporium at San Francisco. There is also a hymn dedicated to this form of durgA with bad Chandas that claims to be a part of rudrayAmaLa, which obviously is untrue. A Kashmiri upAsaka who gave me this copy explained the term sugata as sugatAsura who assumed the form of Buddha and resorted to himsA. He was accompanied by Vajravarahi (the stava does not refer to his manifestation as samvara however, who is vajravArAhi’s consort), who is also an important Hindu deity worshipped not only by nAtha yogis following matsyendra but also by upAsakas of vArAhI in saurAShTra. Then Mother supposedly assumed this form of sugatamardinI to destroy him. The gentleman was not sure about the origin of this tale though. This hardly seemed logical for the stotra is abundant with names of Bodhisattvas described as tathAgata’s army and various popular Buddhist concepts made fun of. Apart from such works, there seems to be no description of battle involving the Buddha described as the ninth avatAra of shrImannArAyaNa.

The New World Age

The idea model is complete in its outlines from particle to cosmos, but nevertheless, what remains significantly outside understanding is the process by which the nature of the present-at-hand will transform itself at the onset of a major shift of epochs. Certain themes that we associate with nonordinary reality or concrescent precursors have yet to be connected with the events since March 1971. The speech-become-visible phenomenon has played no real part in experiences since that time; yet it was just that feature, the outstanding peculiarity of tryptamine ecstasy, that led us to the Amazon originally. Triggering a flood of shared mental imagery might be accomplished via vocally modulated audial phenomena that would illuminate hologramatic images of the imagination modulated vibration from ionic tryptamines, especially serotonin, metabolizing in vivo, perhaps in the pineal gland. We suggest that charge transfer involving such tryptamine ions may be the chemical analogs or the reflection in physical matter of ongoing processes of thought and idea formation. A major shift of epochs might allow these audio-holograms to become telepathically shared or to condense and appear as light or even matter. Up to now we have often opposed light and matter, the latter being associated with mass and often with electricity, while the former always appears free from inertia and charge. But if these two fundamental entities of the physical world appear to oppose one another, they are none the less related because they are both special forms of energy. In principle, therefore, there is nothing against the view that energy, while always conserving itself, can pass from the material to the luminous form and vice versa. We know today that it is actually so; this fact breaks down the barrier which seemed to separate light and matter and, to complete the enumeration of the fundamental properties which assure light a privileged place amongst the physical entities, we can now add that light is, in short, the most refined form of matter.

The notion of concrescence signifies an abyss of ambiguity, for once the monadic hierarchy enters the short epochs preceding oncrescence, the normal limitations of three dimensions will be obviated. In the last 2 1/4 hours of the duration of space-time, all of the cycles must, in some sense, be repeated several times. What the last epochs of time will be like, as all things are gathered and focused toward concrescence, remains mysterious. We do not yet know whether the cycle of time we are studying is time caused by the submolecular energy exchanges in living macromolecules, and thus a biological phenomenon. We speculate that quantum-mechanical constraints have configured life and imposed boundary conditions on it, and that DNA is configured as it is because it reflects some quantummechanical or astrophysical organizing principle that makes no discrimination between the organic and the inorganic but is as responsible for the nature of nonorganic processes as it is for the manner in which the cell or the mind is organized. If this is not the case, and the waveform applies exclusively to DNA-based organisms, then this would return the problem of the origin of the inanimate universe to the cosmologists, and thus fail in its attempt to serve as a general theory of systems. The correlation of the mechanics of the wave to solar processes, lunar movements, and equinoctial precession argues that to suppose this a systems theory of biological processes exclusively is to make an unnecessarily limiting distinction. Since the wave maps variables reflected in the organization of the psyche, it naturally has heuristic potential as a mnemonic engine. Surveying and intensifying one’s understanding concerning these retrogressing time cycles is like a preliminary course in atemporal navigation.

The standing wave-hierarchy contains everything now in the state called active imagination; presumably, it will exist some time in the future as the state called objective, or shared, reality. Comprehension of this unity in a particular or dynamic manner, rather than the quiescent and static total comprehension of the entire information field represented as some kind of enstasis, is a way of seeing, a shamanic path, and is accomplished through application of right method to the unitary information field. Anyone using the quantified frames of the hierarchy, especially when applying them to history or to the lunar year, should note that numbers rest on lines that designate days ; yet there are dawn lines, and the day lying between two position numbers is a day that runs from dawn to dawn. The idea that days begin and end at dawn is third century and Gnostic, according to Jonas; later, it was carried over by Manichaeans. We adhere to this idea because during the experiment in March 1971, it was clear that, as far as daily energy cycles in the environment are concerned, dawn and, secondarily, dusk are the moments of the opening of the crack between the worlds.

In fact, after March 4, 1971, and until we left La Chorrera, the time of the onset of maximum self-revelation of ingressing novelty was quite literally concurrent with the sunrise, beginning at the crack of dawn each morning. This moment on our scale is the end of one day and the beginning of another. We believe that the importance of the dawn moment is rooted in the relationship between light and living organisms. That such circadian or daily cycles of light-induced metabolic fluctuations exist is well documented. Research has shown that 5HT (serotonin) in the pineal gland is light synchronized. 5HT is the very metabolite that may allow us the experience of self-reflecting consciousness. This idea clarifies at the neurohumoral level the intuitive connection felt by all peoples between the rising of the sun and the differentiation of the self out of unstructured chaos; indeed, the connection may be one of cause and effect.

Pineal serotonin fluctuates, rising and falling in a daily rhythm. Its persistence after blinding suggested that this rhythm is endogenous but synchronized by light and dark. Like melatonin, its levels in the pineal seemed to respond to light entering through the eyes, transmitted as nerve messages along the inferior accessory optic tract. But unlike melatonin, its increases and decreases were not explained by enzyme activity. The story was evidently more complex and interesting than anyone had forecast, for pineal serotonin seemed to follow an endogenous, circadian rhythm that was entrained by light and darkness in a manner not thoroughly understood.

Thus, our understanding is that a maximum density of novel connection occurs at dawn in any cycle large enough to encompass at least one dawn moment. This assertion might be investigated using the methods of evaluation that J. B. Rhine developed to evaluate psychic phenomena. A group tested only at the propitious moment each day might be easily compared with a different group examined daily at a different time or with a group whose testing had taken no account of the time the test was administered.

The nearness of a major concrescence to our own time seems a selfevident fact, implicit in the excesses of all sorts that characterize the history of the twentieth century. Two methods for computing possible dates of a future concrescence have been found suggestive. The first is simple and involves simply propagating 67-plus “year cycles and their subsets forward in time, with various shifts in the alignment of the scales. The software implementation of the wave, Timewave Zero, allows any date to be studied, and appropriate computer programs could be written to search among many dates for a best fit of quantified historical data to the quantified wave-hierarchy. The problem with this, and all approaches of this sort, lies in finding a method of quantifying historical data.

The second approach to a search of possible dates for future concrescence is more subtle and takes account of the precession of the equinoxes. Because of the precession, the solstice and equinoctial nodes precess or move backward against the background of the fixed stars that comprise the zodiac. In a 26,000-year zodiacal great year, the solstice and equinoctial nodes move through the entire zodiac. It is a coincidence then that in our own time, the winter solstice is placed in the constellation Sagittarius, only about 3° from the galactic center, which, also coincidentally is within 2° of the ecliptic. Because the winter solstice node is precessing, it is moving closer and closer to the point on the ecliptic where it will eclipse the galactic center. This will occur sometime in the next two hundred years. It is difficult to be more accurate, since the term galactic center is ambiguous. A degree covers a large area in space, and the galaxy may be presumed to have a gravitational center, a radio center, and a spatial center. Nevertheless, we suggest that the transition from one zodiacal era of approximately twenty-two hundred years duration to the next may be hinged on the conjunction of the solstice node and the galactic center. It is useful to examine winter solstices on which solar eclipses will occur over the next two hundred years, during which the earth’s solstice node will be slowly transiting the area of the galactic center. When this is done the most likely helical rising of the galactic center with the solstice sun occurs on December 21, 2012. The eclipse of the galactic center by the solstice sun might be an event unusual enough to signal an onset of concrescence. If a causal connection were shown, it would implicate the galaxy itself as a major formative influence upon the structure of the molecules that maintain and define life. That such a situation would have noticeable effects on life on earth is totally speculative. However, ideas of such an archetypal nature do not arise except upon a basis of biological organization.

The relation of a time of renewal to the conjunction of the solstice nodes and the galactic center has been noted by others: Considering the fact that the crossroads of ecliptic and Galaxy are crisis-resistant, that is, not concerned with the Precession, the reader may want to know why the Mangaians thought they could go to heaven only on the two solstitial days. Because, in order to change trains comfortably, the constellations that serve as gates to the Milky Way must stand upon the earth, meaning that they must rise helically either at the equinoxes or at the solstices. The Galaxy is a very broad highway, but even so there must have been some bitter millennia when neither gate was directly available any longer, the one hanging in midair, the other having turned into a submarine entrance.

Sagittarius and Gemini still mark the solstices in the closing years of the Age of Pisces. Next comes Aquarius. The ancients, no doubt, would have considered the troubles of these our times, the overpopulation, the working iniquity in secret, as an inevitable prelude to a new tilting, a new world-age.

- By Terence McKenna

Note: Half an hour before the winter solstice of December 21, 2012, the sun will rise at La Chorrera (730 west, 43′ south) in a position that will eclipse the galactic center. The rising sun is caught in the crosshairs of the intersection of the plane of the ecliptic with the ecliptical plane of our galaxy.

Niranjan, you asked me about Arunachala and Machu Picchu. Here is some food for thought. Don’t ask me for more :-)

AchAra

[Query] Namaste, sir, we both are (self and wife)gurupadistas. She is a working women. Although our ancestors were following practice of sitting seperatly for three days (periods time) we are unable to follow it. Even if we do it in home, when we go out we will be mixing with others and when we eat out the basic principle is lost. We have got a house maid who moves around in our home. Although I avoid sri chakra puja in those days, I continue daily sadhana but she takes interval for those days.

Please do guide us.

*******************************

Dear Sir,

The shastras advice us to follow the AchAra to the best possible extent. The first option would be to intelligently come up with a strategy to avoid an unfavorable situation. When that is not feasible, one should do whatever is best possible and leave the rest to the lotus feet of parAshakti. It should never be forgotten that the panchadashI mantra is credited with the power to absolve every sin, and this is not mere arthavAda, especially in the described circumstance. I cannot comment on the injunctions of the shAstras and the amount of rigidity that is required in following them, but I do believe that a sincere effort is immediately appreciated by the stupid lady and she makes way for what she thinks is good for us. One should simply do what is best possible, being true to one’s heart, and leave the rest to parAmbA. The various doshas such as these are a reality of Kali Yuga. As stated in various shastras, bhagavannAma smaraNa is the easiest and foremost method to attain shuddhi in kali:

harernAma harernAma harernAmaiva kevalam |
kalau nAstyeva nAstyeva nAstyeva gatiranyathA ||

The power of nAmasmaraNa, in the context of shrIvidyA, has been stated by Lord Hayagriva thus:

kalau pApaikabahuLe dharmAnuShThAna varjite |
nAmAnukIrtanaM muktvA nR^iNAM nAnyatparAyaNam ||

We have discussed earlier the need for nAmasmaraNa even by those who think they perform all the required karma in the specified way. That simply is not possible due to Kali dharma as stated in several shastras that ordain karma. Sri Bhaskararaya deals with this topic briefly in saubhagya bhaskara as well. Madhusudana Saraswati, Sri Bhagavannama Bodhendra, Sri Lakshmana Deshikendra and others discuss this elaborately. The nAmasmaraNa of paradevata, by means of reciting panchadashI mahAmantra whose nAmaTmakatA has been stated in trishatI [kakArarupetyAdi] as well as by AchArya bhagavatpAda [tava janani nAmAvayavatAm], is capable of granting paripurnata to everything and that is the primary refuge for an upAsaka in all matters.

It is people like your good self that hold high the torch of Upasana, managing both laukika and AdhyAtmika vyavaharas, and giving their sincere best to both.

Best Wishes …

tvadIyaM vastu govinda tubhyameva samarpaye ||
hare krShNa

Sri Pashupatinath

The supremely beautiful and distinctive image of shrI pashupatinAtha mahAdeva at Kathmandu, Nepal, is adorned with four visible faces:

1. sadyojAta
2. vAmadeva
3. aghora
4. tatpuruSha

The fifth and invisible face of IshAna together with the other four faces forms a pancha mukha linga. The Srikula Krama Tantra of
Bimbambika Sampradaya which flourished prosperously in Nepal during certain periods, describes the following names for the five faces:

1. mahAdeva (pUrva mukha, pUrvAmnAya)
2. bhairava (dakShiNa mukha, dakShiNAmnAya)
3. nandivaktra (pashchima mukha, pashchimAmnAya)
4. umA vaktra (uttara mukha, shAktAmnAya)
5. sadAshiva (Urdhva mukha, UrdhvAmnAya)

The base of the linga represents adharAmnAya. The above epithets with respective mantras (kramakalpalatA, pAshupata krama, verses 18-39) are used today in the temple during ritualistic worship thrice every day.

What bhagavatpAda shankara did for the revival of sanAtana dharma in the face of many inroads into its stronghold in his days, then profoundly different from the pristine form and philosophy owing to the trappings of misinterpreted tAntric worship, is indeed marvelous. It is a commonplace in history that bhagavatpAda was responsible for the regeneration of the Hindu way of life and religious practice and for an extended devotional support to shAkta mata in its twin forms dealing with prakR^iti and puruSha. In keeping with the general practice set in vogue by the jagadguru, shivAbhinnA parAshakti is worshiped in the shrine of pashupatinAtha in the form of shrIyantra placed above the linga, representing tripurasundarI as panchabrahmAsanasthitA. She is worshipped with various offerings and tarpaNa using the parA ShoDashI mahAmantra and ShoDashAvaraNa krama. After all, the most distinctive aspect of even the Urdvaretas form of yogIshvara mahAdeva, along with his supreme control over the senses, is his intimate and uninterrupted contact with shakti. This gets stated beautifully in mAlavikAgnimitra:

kAntAsammishradeho.apyaviShayamanasAM yaH parastAdyatInAm ||

The statement in the mAhatmya khaNDa of tripurA rahasya describing the shrIchakra present on a panchamukha linga as the most auspicious among dasha koTi shrIyantras, seems to be an explicit indication of pashupatinAtha. The worship manual used by the priests in the shrine describes mahAtripurasundarI as the central deity commanding a greater priority than even the poor mahAdeva (sharIrArdham shambhoraparamapi shanke hritamabhUt, proktA shivavyApinI etc.) and her worship above the panchabrahma linga is described as granting yoga siddhi. The six yogas associated with the six aspects of the linga and AmnAyas that are attained by worship of mahAtripurasundarI (kAmakalA kAlikA) and pashupatinAtha (kAmeshvara bhaTTAraka or mahAkAla kAmeshvara) are:

1. adharAmnAya: shabda yoga
2. pUrvAmnAya: mantra yoga
3. dakshiNAmnAya: bhakti yoga
4. pashchimAmnAya: karma yoga
5. uttarAmnAya: j~nAnayoga
6. UrdhvAmnAya: shakti yoga or mokSha yoga

These seem to be based on the model of six yogas described in rudrayAmaLa with laya yoga replaced by shabda yoga.

namashshivAbhyAm

The Mystic Breath

The abiding Reality in its natural flow
Exists in seven ways;
It is held to be spontaneously present in view of its being varied;
Indeterminate in its being alive with movement;
Determinate via its unchanging nature;

Transformable into anything with the dynamism of its presencing;
Describable as anything since it gives rise to everything;
Originally pure since it is free of straying and distortion;
And variegated with its diverse modes of manifestation.

Since the Great Perfection can appear in any way,
There are a great number of diverse assertions about it
Drawn from the specific particulars of such descriptions;
Yet within the view turned towards its abiding natural flow
It is revealed as neither this one nor two.

The ground which exists in a primeval, natural flow
Has no existence outside of its own oneness,
Yet it appears in seven distinct ways
When conceptually delineated
Under the bias of our distorted perception.

Beyond levels, partializing restrictions, and segmentation,
It is devoid of existence, non-existence or something that can be seen;
It is not within the scope of linguistic or logical analyses,
Nor is it something single, dual, or even an itemizable object at all.

Originally pure reality devoid of discursive elaboration,
Is the Ground-nucleus, thoroughly pure in its own essence.
Being devoid of words and letters,
It cannot be delineated with verbal expression;
Being devoid of all conventional reifications and terminology,
Conceptuality with its subject-object dualism does not apply.

When the core of such absence
Is verbally delineated in a provisional way,
Its essence is original purity
And its nature is spontaneous presence.

I have known thus through the merits earned willfully
Tranquil and subtle, the tool is the breath.
Through the successive periods of a day
The energy winds are reckoned to be
Twenty one thousand and six hundred in number,
And thus complete in a single day.

In every sixty moving winds
There is one that is subtle which is real
In double that interval there is one coarse
And make it triple to get one gross.
Here is a grand of six hundred distorted winds
In three divisions of subtle, coarse and gross;
These are all Karma is about!

In one third of that interval there is one balanced wind;
To put it all together,
Every twenty breaths there is a single moment
Where shines the reality’s sameness.

With the identity of being impelled, vibrated,
Pulsated, lightened, and shaken forth
Through the windy channels of its engendering
The psychic energy of insight revolves in the luminous mandala
As utterly vibrant quintessences of cognitive energy
Characterized as scattering fire-sparks.
This clarity of insight lights up the interior of the crystal tube
And there is bliss, unceasing and empty.

Breath is Worship!

ulUchikA

[Query] Namasthe. We sincerely pray for your guidance harshaji. I live in Cochin and Iam facing intense problems in every field. We consulted prasna and the person told us it is because of a goddess called uloochi. What pooja can we perform to please this goddess?

shriyA cha bhadrayA juShTaH yastaM bhadraM namAmyaham

Whatever I say below is with the assumption that the person who you consulted for divination gave an authentic reply. Firstly, consult another person to cross verify. ulUchikA is no goddess and hence there is no need to please her. She is a kShudra devatA, a somewhat sophisticated form of folk deities such as bAnAmati etc. Like there are sixty-four yoginis who represent the divine force, there are also sixty-four corresponding kshudra devatas, again divided into eight categories. ulUchikA heads one such class and hits first at the children in the house. She is described as wearing a snake skin around her waist, holding a baby crocodile in her hand and smoky in color with bleeding ears. There are some texts that deal with such AbhichArika prayogas and these cannot be countered easily like a yakShiNi or a simple AbhichArika prayoga. I would be really surprised if there are currently people who are capable of deploying such banes. In any case, if there are children in the house, they should be immediately separated from the parents and sent to a maternal relative’s house in another city. Japa and Homa with Pratyangira Rk and Manyu Sukta can help in a limited way, depending on the extent and stage of the abhichAra. My familiarity with Kshudra devatas, their prayoga, pratyabhichAra etc. is very limited. It is best to consult a knowledgeable person who can deal with such forces. I can point you to one such person who in turn can possibly guide you to a mantrajna. Please send a private mail to one of the moderators with your details.

With prayers to the Lotus feet of chandramoulishwara

sadAshiva chakra

The sadAshiva chakra is composed of five chakras: tatpuruSha, aghora, vAmadeva, sadyojAta and IshAna.

Here the word chakra refers to yantra (maNDala), mUrti and mantra and hence a sort of sa~Nketa traya for the five-fold diversity is seen in all these aspects. The origin of the mantra chakra is from the mantra shuddha praNava with its five components: a, u, ma, bindu and nAda. These represent tatpuruShAdi mUrtis. From the praNava arises the five lettered mahAmantra popularly known as shuddha pa~nchAkSharI mantra. The five letters of this mantra represent the five mUrtis (tatpuruShAdayaH). From each of the letters of this mantra originate five panchAkSharI mantras known as the much(y)a panchAkSharas:

IshAna, sadyojAta, vamadeva, aghora and tatpuruSha panchAkSharas.

From each letter of these mantras, five panchAkSharas originate i.e. from every mukhya pa~nchAkShara mantra, twenty-five panchAkShara mantras emanate:

praNava
|
V
shuddha panchAkShara
|
V
tatpuruSha panchAkShara, aghora pa~nchAkShara, vAmadeva pa~nchAkShara, sadyojAta pa~nchAkShara, IshAna pa~nchAkShara

tatpuruSha ->

ananta, aghora, saumya, rudra, hamsa, Atma, Aj~nA, madana, mAyA, mantra, amR^ita, prapa~ncha, sArasvata, skanda, mUla, mahA, kailAsa, mR^ityu~njaya, lakShmI, kShipra, Ananda, ana~Nga, shAmbhava, jvAlA and sarvasiddhi panchAkSharas

aghora ->

vidveSha, savya, satya, brahma, vishva, varuNa, samudrashoShaNa, garuDa, gaja, bhramara, saMgrAma, yoginI, gaNa, shArabha, gandharva, vidyAdhara, sandhAna, sR^iShTi, samhAra, chitra, vyaShTi, samaShTi, vaishvAnara, parjanya and yakSha pa~nchAkSharas

vAmadeva ->

stambhana, praj~nA, stotra, vimAna, mAnasa, dhenu, purUhUta, icChA, laghu, saura, baindava, sa~nchAra, Aloka, vij~nAna, khechara, pa~nchasadAkhya, manovega, shubha, gIrvANa, svarga, viSha, sundara, ghaNTA, sa~njIvana and AkhaNDala panchAksharas

sadyojAta ->

bhedana, prAjApatya, mahAbala, nirvana, nayana, giri, viShNu, ucchaishrava, mandAkinI, samvarta, aghamarShaNa, anAhata, megha, pavana, siddhi, yaj~na, pUjA, parimala, sasya, dik, jihvA, karNa, chit, j~nAna and sambhoga panchAkSharas

IshAna ->
prAsAda, prAsAdagochara, prAsAdasundara, prAsAdashekhara, prAsAdasaura, prAsAdabandhana, prAsAdabhujanga, prAsAdakamala, prAsAdachandra, prAsAdavidyAdhara, prAsAdavij~nAna, prAsAdachintAmaNi, prAsAdadIpaka, prAsAdavidyatanu, prAsAdakamalAnanda, prAsAdakavacha, prAsAdaratnAkara, prAsAdakaustubha, prAsAdalakShaNa, prAsAdakuNDalI, prAsAdachUDAmaNi, prAsAdapArameshvarIya, prAsAdashaiva, prAsAdashakti and mahAprAsAda panchakshara mantras

Each of the 125 panchAkShara mantras are said to confer different siddhis. For example, the siddhi associated with prAsAdakamalAnanda is bhuvanAdhva darshana, prAsAda chintAmaNi is somamaNDala darshana, karNa panchAkShara is karNa siddhi, nayana panchAkshara is dUradarshana siddhi, khechara panchAkShara is AkAshagamana siddhi and so on.

Thus, this results in a total of 125 + 5 + 1 = 131 mantras (excluding praNava) which again amounts to the number 5 (1+3+1). As these 131 mantras with praNava acting as mantra vIrya for each of them are hidden within the prAsAda, this great mantra of sadAshiva is termed as the seed or bIja of every mantra belonging to shaivAmnAya. Hence, the UrdhvAmnAya tantra describes the siddhi of prAsAda as equivalent to the siddhi of the entire gamut of shaiva mantras. When we speak of prAsAda, the reference here is to shuddha prAsAda (of shaivAmnAya) but due to its presence within parA prAsAda and prAsAda parA, this would hold good even in the case of these mantras belonging to shAmbhavAmnAya. Hence it is said regarding mahAprAsAda mantra:

tamAchAryaM vijAnIhi dvAdashArNapradaM shive |
guruH prAsAdadAtA syAdupAdhyAyaH prakIrtitaH ||
ShaDakSharI pradAtA tu sA~NgopA~NgaM mahAmanum |
dadan sa paramAchAryo saiva deshikarADiti ||
imaM manuM naro yastu sakR^ijjapati bhUtale |
guruM santoShya yatnena pUjayitvA svakardhanaiH ||
sa eva muktisAmrAjyapadavIbhA~N na saMshayaH |
shaivaM ShaDakSharImAhuH pUrvA~NgaM shrutayaH shive ||
dvAdasharNaM tathA prAhuruttarA~NgaM shivAgamAH |
prAsAdamAhurhR^idayaM sarvAmnAyagatAH shive ||
vidyAvihInopi dhanairvihInaH putrairvihInopi yashasA vihInaH |
vidyAmimAM kAmitakalpavallIM sA~NgAM bruvan pAtakasa~NghamuktaH ||
shivopi chAhaM svamukhairyutaH san vidhishcha vA viShNurathAmarA vA |
mAhAtmyamasyAH prabhavanti nAtra kiM vaktumanye prabhavanti mUDhAH ||

The anuShThAna of sadAshiva chakra and panchAkShara prAsAda rashmi nyAsa are performed during pradoSha and importantly on the last prahara of Mahashivratri. The observance of sadAshiva chakra in its aspects of mantra, mUrti and mandala grants panchAnga shuddhi without which inner alchemy has been declared as unattainable by the rasa siddhas.

sarvapraharaNAyudhaH

There was a query sometime ago on why the last name in shrI viShNu sahasranAma is repeated twice. The reason for that is the following:

adhyAyAnte dviruktiH syAt vede vA vaidikepi vA |

AchArya bhagavatpAda respects this tradition and uses the reading sarvapraharaNAyudha om nama iti in his bhAShya.

dvirvachanaM samAptiM dyotayati | omkArashcha ma~NgalArthaH |

omkArashchAtha shabdashcha dvAvetau brahmaNaH purA |
kaNThaM bhitvA viniryAtau tasmAnmA~NgalikAvubhau || [bR^ihannAradIye]

Thus, the repetition of this name is not without a reason.

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eko.api kR^iShNe sukR^itah praNAmo dashAshvamedhAvabR^ithena tulyah |
dashAshvamedhI punareti janma kR^iShNa praNAmI na punarbhavAya ||

hare krShNa

trikhaNDA mudrA

namastripurabhairavyai

Each of the ten mudrAs starting with sarvasaMkShobhiNI and ending with sarvatrikhaNDA have their own importance. However, trikhaNDA is indeed special due to one reason. The entire kalApa of bahiryAga assumes significance after the presence of shrI sundarI in the bimba or yantra and the mudrA which accomplishes the AvAhana of parAmbA is trikhaNDA:

trikhaNDeyaM mahAmudrA tripurAhvAnakarmaNi [vAmakeshvare]

Hence, bahiryAga siddhi is attributed to trikhaNDA mudrA specifically among the dasha mudrAs. Of course, bhAskararAya does state in setubandha that upAsanA is japarUpa in kali yuga and hence archana is an anga of japa and not vice versa. If this is accepted, then bahiryAga siddhi would seem more logical when associated with sarvayoni mudrA rather than trikhaNDA. However, this view, even if not incorrect, does not seem to find support either in kalpasUtra, tantrarAja or nityAShoDashikArNava where japa is an anga of bahiryAga. So also says the tradition.

Here, tri means three and it can denote either janma, mR^ityu and jarA or sattva, rajas and tamas. As this mudrA, which is non-different from parAmbA, destroys this triad, it is called trikhaNDA:

trIn khaNDayatIti trikhaNDA ||

In other words, the mudrA grants kaivalya or mokSha.

Alternately, tri here represents icchA, j~nAna and kriyA shaktis or the three khaNDas of the supreme mahAvidyA namely vAgbhava, kAmarAja and soma kUTas. The mudrA which represents these three khaNDas is named trikhaNDA.

mudrAkhyA sA yadA samvidambikA trikalAmayI |
trikhaNDArUpamApannA sadA sAnnidhyakAriNI || [yoginI tantre]

Though vAmakeshvara tantra teaches only two khaNDas for the mudrA, bhAskararAya instructs the upAsaka to refer to tantrAntara and necessarily accomplish khaNDatraya:

trikhaNDeti yogArthasampattaye tantrAntaraM sharaNIkR^itya khaNDatrayamavashyaM sampAdanIyam |

It is of great significance to know why a specific mantra of three kUTas is coupled with trikhaNDA during AvAhana of parAmbA and not panchadashI or ShoDashI. The answer to this lies in the concept of awakening kuNDalinI or the serpent of fire which is what AvAhana is all about. And when we say snake, there is hissing and she is yogAgni svarUpinI. I am sure many have seen the Harry Potter series of movies. Potter, to communicate with a snake (in Goblet of Fire), uses its language which is predominantly a hissing sound. While this is fiction, the Yogis of Tibet who practice gtummo to awaken the sacred fire use a similar technique. The exact sanketa rahasya should be grasped from Sadguru.

Also, one can refer to the following statement from bhAvanopaniShad:

AdhAranavakaM mudrAshaktayaH ||

The nine AdhAras are mUlAdhArAdi ShaTka, Urdhva and adhaH sahasrAra, and lambikAgra. Each of these corresponds to one of the nine mudrAs (sarvasaMkShobhiNI to sarvayoni). The samaShTi of these navAdhAras and hence of nava mudrAs (grouped into three categories) is represented by trikhaNDA mudrA. Thus, the mudrA also represents the source tattva of the nine aspects: sR^iShTi sR^iShTi, sR^iShTi sthiti etc. shrI bhAskararAya thus illustrates the following prayoga:

pAdA~NguShTharUpa AdhAranavakAtmane sarvatrikhaNDAmudrAyai namaH ||

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mukundo govindo janakatanayAlAlitapadaH
padaM prAptA yasyAdhamakulabhavA chApi shabarI |
girAtIto.agamyo vimaladhiShaNairvedavachasA
ramAnAtho rAmo ramatu mama chitte tu satatam ||

anupAya

[Query] Why does a kaula who has taken saktopaya need japam or worship? My guru guided us saying this is anupaaya maargam. Please clear my confusion.

There are two things you are trying to link here: kaula and shAktopAya. Let’s take what is relevant to this discussion, which is shAktopAya. There are three upAyas: shAmbhava, shAkta and ANavopAya. While what you speak of as kaula or simply shAkta upAsanA (be it vAma or dakSha) can be fit into this scheme roughly, possibly between the last two upAyas (ANava is the least or the lowest but abhinavaguptapAdAcharya always starts with the highest and following the same tradition, vidvAns have regarded shAkta and ANavopAyas as the last two). But the fourth and the highest path is of anupAya which is beyond the three. anupAya or no-means technique is not a technique per say but simply a glorious experience of the anuttara beyond the twin aspects of transcendence and immanence aka shiva and shakti. Thus anupAya denotes liberation itself and not a pathway to it for it is summarized by abhinavaguptapAdAchArya as svAtmavishrAnti, although it is allegorically represented as AnandopAya. While anupAya is simply this, shAstra classifies it into two: anAkhya and sUkShmopAya. The highest category of Yogis in who shines the shivadR^iShTi resplendently, appear on material planes fully enlightened and they are true adhikArins for anupAya as they need no upAya or practice. This experience which is indescribable is anAkhya. This indeed is true anupAya. The next category of Yogis who are completely purified and almost ready to embrace anupAya are eligible for sUkShmopAya or the subtle path where a gaze of the guru or tattvopadesha is sufficient to immediately propel the consciousness of the disciple into the sphere of transcendence. Thus, sadyaH muktAH are those yogis who adopt sUkShmopAya. One can refer to shiva dR^iShTi where somAnanda says:

When Shiva who is omnipresent is known just once through the firm insight that arises of pramANa, shAstra and deshika vAkya, no upAya serves any purpose and even bhAvanA is of no further utility.

It is up to oneself to conclude if he/she qualifies for anupAya.

Hare krShNa