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Dhanur Masam - the desire for freedom, Purusha Vishnu teaches Jnana Yoga

image by  Sri Madhav Priya Dasi
Today begins Dhanur Masam. Before dawn, sit with the feet stretched out, crossed but without touching the thighs. Stretch out the right hand and rest it upon the left. Fix your tongue in your palate, and relax your jaw so that your teeth do not contact each other. Direct your eyes beyond the tip of your nose, glance in a relaxed way downward. Do not be distracted by anything occurring about you, be free from fear. Then, in such composure, meditate upon meditation itself. Understand Purusha: the consciousness of consciousness. Purusha is apart from the senses, the awareness of the senses, even the awareness of awareness.

The first jhana is a withdrawal from sensuality (touch, taste, sound, sight, smell, etc.) accompanied by directed thought and evaluation.

The second jhana is a withdrawal from directed thought and evaluation, accompanied by awareness and consciousness.

The third jhana is a conscious awareness of pleasure and pain, free of thought and evaluation, free of sensuality, accompanied by the withdrawal from elation and distress.

The fourth jhana is withdrawal from pleasure and pain.

From the fourth jhana, the mind is directed to a withdrawal from time, space, form, and an increased consciousness and logicality naturally arises. This increased consciousness is necessary for true love: love arises by a knowledge of the nature of things. By merely understanding the basic laws of the universe, freedom from the cycles of suffering is possible. At this stage, there is only wakefulness to truth, and then enlightenment.

If you are unable to wake by meditating upon this consciousness of consciousness, meditate upon the components of form, and the perception of form. This will permit understanding of Purusha.

If you are unable to meditate upon the components of form, meditate upon Purusha shining like a lamp in your heart, like a lotus growing upsidedown.

If you are unable to meditate upon this, envision Bhagavat Vasudeva (Vishnu), adorned with a crown, ear-rings, bracelets, who has the mark of Srivatsa, and a garland of woodland flowers on his breast. Envision him as pleasing, with four arms holding the shell, discus, mace and lotus-flower, worshiped by the world. Remember how the world fell in love with Vishnu as he played in the beginnings of Brahma's wakefulness.

Whatever you are meditating on, understand that what is desired is obtained. Understand all that is desired perishes. Desire to not desire. Desire freedom from the distress of samsara. Meditate only on what is imperishable. Meditate on freedom. This is Purusha. Obtain your liberation by understanding your desire for freedom! Purusha Vishnu already dwells in your heart.