What is cleaning process?
Generally, cleaning conveys a sense which implies getting rid of dirt / dross. Every religion advocates this before one starts the prayer / worship. There are two types of cleaning, i.e. external and internal. Both types have been made mandatory for the purpose. Modern civilisation has given more importance to external cleaning than the internal one. In fact, the latter has to be given the importance.
Under Sahaj Marg system of practice, the internal cleaning has its own meaning and importance. Our Master has stated that Purity, Subtlety, Simplicity, Stillness are the fundamental prerequisites for those who aspire for the Highest. These are the qualities intrinsic in nature. Let us reverse it and try to see its significance. The message is clear. We are impure, complex and gross. Internal cleaning involves removal of these things labelled as obstructions.
How are these obstructions created? Who is responsible for them? Do they have any material tinge? Such questions find their answer only when one takes up the practice of Sahaj Marg under “a proper guide”. The causative factor responsible for the creation of obstruction is the human thought and its power. Every thought has its own power and acts as a cause, the resultant is its effect.
Thus, the cause and effect theory comes into play, which has to be stopped for further spiritual progress. Example of a man running after one Jamila (fourth commandment) is quite illustrative to highlight the contention implied. It is to say that we have created our own tiny world within ourselves through our wayward thinking on unnecessary topics, depending upon our thoughts, desires, tendencies of mind and mindset.
For the sake of further clarity, abhyasi is solely responsible for creating obstructions, which are variously described as following:
It is formed because of our thinking which is other than our Goal – Ultimate – Master.
Any contradictory thought, creating a state of confusion or its opposite, is called complexity like – good and bad, likes and dislikes, pain and pleasure, pride prejudice, etc.
Anything with which one is unduly attached or bound, becomes a bondage. Usually we spend much of our time repeatedly about men and material with which we are closely attached. e.g. Family members including wife, children, parents, relatives and associates, wealth, property, profession, etc.
If we think over and over on the same thing or thought or similar such trivial thoughts over a period of time, they create network. If such similar process continues it gives rise to what is called individual network
If the process of network formation persists and continuous further for considerable longer period, it may become solid – Samskar and keeps the soul enwrapped. We know fully well that every birth occurs only because of the presence of such Samskars. If all the enwrapped Samskars are cleaned, then the resultant effect is Liberation.
It is necessary to understand that any obstruction, irrespective of its nature needs cleaning, lest the wayward usage of thought power sets in vicious cycle.
Consequently, one type of obstruction – say Grossness – gets converted into Network, further making it dense and then solidmatter. This can be taken as an example of conversion of energy into matter. Result of these silent happenings is that an abhyasi feels heaviness, disturbed state of mind, irritability, short temperedness etc. thereby losing the power of discrimination i.e. Viveka. See how a trivial thought of ours creates such a havoc.
What is the necessity of cleaning?
Man claims to be living by virtue of organic structure only. He is usually unmindful of the life force (power of the Ultimate). It is the life force which keeps the structure alive. It also governs and guides the course of action. Similarly each and every cell is said to be living and a miniature replica of the physique. Experience shows that heart is introvert, where as mind is extrovert. Because of the inherent quality, mind thinks and heart stores.
During our march in life, the mind, with its extrovert tendency, has become sense dependent, thereby eclipsing the introvert tendency of heart. The heart region extends from top to toe. Thereby signifying the unlimited capacity for the storage of obstructions. Now let us look at the structural and functional aspects of the human system. One feels at loss and knowingly or unknowingly, starts yielding to temptations and desires etc., thus he paves the downhill course for himself. The result can be summarized by the following quotation “you will hardly find any stone lying in the street that is fit for building purpose” (letter dated 30-08-1955 from Master to Sri. Raghavendra Rao of Raichur). Generally it is said by the people, with religious tendency, about the persons who are aiming at spiritual upliftment, “Atma merging in Paramatma or a drop mixing with ocean”.
This is mere expression of inexperienced persons not doing any practice. But in fact it is not so. For Atma before becoming one with Paramatma, it must become identical or drop of surface water should develop all the properties of sea water, then only it becomes identical. Keeping this example in mind, every Sadhak, who has taken up Sadhana sincerely, should take up cleaning and transform by self-effort and by Master’s Grace for further progress.
Suffice it to say, that the cleaning is imperative for spiritual progress. Sahaj Marg system of Sadhana alone attaches great importance to this aspect.
How cleaning is done?
Methods adopted for the purpose of cleaning are as follows.
1. Daily cleaning in the evening:-
It is one of the precepts recommended under the system. It is a potent weapon in the hands of an abhyasi. It is an autosuggestion, the very thought power that is responsible for creating obstruction is used for the purpose of cleaning daily in the evening. Auto-suggestion has an advantage of support from Master. Obstructions like grossness, network etc. which are created by our wayward thinking in the course of daily routine can be removed by taking up this practice. If an abhyasi by chance does not get over his obstructions, he can approach a preceptor, who with Master’s power can remove that. Hence the question of their development into density / solidity does not arise.
2. By undergoing Bhoga:-
Master has stated that we ourselves are the makers of fate. When we do something by applying our ‘head and heart’ (intellect and interest), we form impressions in that original thing, which is the base of all things and that remains in the seed form as long as we do not erase its impression by undergoing Bhoga (Enjoyment or Suffering). It is compulsory to undergo its Bhoga, then only that impression is cleaned. As a rule, nature wants to keep everything pure and crystal clear as it had come down originally in the beginning (Seventh commandment). The entire cleaning process is meant to bring original condition back.
3. Constant Remembrance of Master:-
When we attach our thought with the Highest – Ultimate – Master, our thought becomes totally devoid of material tinge and ceases to be a cause and consequently it has no effect. As a result, there is neither creation of new obstruction nor any addition. The very thought of our Master drives away the impurity, just as the sun does to darkness. In case, human thought about our Master does not cease to be a cause, it will have its effect which is a welcome one and it is what an abhyasi aspires for. It is in fact a revelation of Goal realization. Thus by doing constant remembrance, we are in touch with our Goal and at the same time trying to washout our grossness too.
4. Master’s Transmission:- Thou Art The Real Goal Of Human Life Coverings and samskars are cleaned, their density / solidity is converted into energy and this energy is then disseminated throughout the body and gets accumulated at the required available sites, affecting even the layers reserved for Bhoga, thereby minimizing the Bhoga to be undergone.
What is the extent of cleaning?
No doubt, abhyasis are regular in doing the cleaning. During my discussion and interaction with them, it is observed that the general thought is to clean heart only and they perceive the heart as an anatomical organ. In fact, the heart region extends from top to toe. Hence, entire body and its system including every pore, every cell needs to be cleaned thoroughly, completely and then everything has be regulated and organized by one’s Viveka, which is an ongoing and continuous process till the condition culminates to its originally of not only heart but also of mind.
When cleaning is effective?
Cleaning helps in the removal of obstructions that are usually encountered during our pursuit. Cleaning enhances the deserving capacity of the aspirant and attracts Master’s attention. The cleaning process establishes a direct link between heart and mind, as a result slavish and materialistic tendencies of the mind are set right. Thorough cleaning creates vacuity in the cells of the body and facilitates attainment of the prerequisites of the purity (Divinity), subtlety, simplicity and stillness for further progress. This is possible only by self-effort and by Master’s Grace.
I pray to Revered Master to bestow us all with that condition and take us in Him.