The Experience of Bliss
Thursday, January 24, 2013
There is a special kind of Vedic ritual called the soma sacrifice that was once very important and done on a regular basis. It was done during a time when all the practitioners in a particular community gathered together, all the priests who had memorized a particular Veda and a particular set of these works – the Brahmanas, the Aranyakas, or the Upanishads, tens of thousands of lines. All these people would gather together and perform the soma sacrifice, in which they drank a liquor made from a hallucinogenic plant, and they got completely spun out. They even offered it into the fire, so that Indra would become equally blissful. Later on, the soma sacrifice fell into disuse. It fell into oblivion to the degree that, today, nobody even knows what plant was actually used to create soma. That’s unusual because there are still literally thousands of people who can recite the entire Rig Veda.
The reason why the soma practice fell into disuse, in my opinion, is because it became obsolete. It became obsolete because people understood that the bliss that unites us with the ultimate reality is ever-present within us. The intoxicating substance was really taken to shift our neurochemistry just enough that our tensions could be suspended for a moment, and we could experience the movement of our own creative energy and the bliss that is inherent in our own inner power. Once that is understood, there is no substance necessary for any support because we can simply turn our attention within and, on our breath, awaken our energetic mechanism and experience this bliss.
In the context of that joy, what activity does your mind engage in? My own experience is that when my heart is really open, my mind is dead quiet. In that dead quiet, all the forms of all the phenomena that manifest in my sensory experiential field take on the appearance of rainbows. Cultivating our capacity to make contact with our own hearts, to open our hearts and feel within ourselves the joy of the flow of life itself within us, liberates us from the ordinary garbage of our ordinary day and brings us to a state within ourselves that is transcendent and sacred, and incredibly simple. Cultivating within ourselves the capacity to live in that state transforms our lives completely and is a total blessing to the lives of all the people we’re connected with.
Feel your breath, focus your mind, relax your body and discover the soma, the bliss that is the essence of you. Discovering that bliss, that richness, that joy, that sweetness, that love that is ever present within us – cultivating and living from that – liberates our life to express itself in its fullest, unlimited potential. That is the message of the Vedas, the Upanishads, the Yoga Sutras and all of the Tantras. What I hope to express is that I wish that all for you, all of it.
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