In the 12th dharana of Vigyana Bhairava Tantra, Shiva says
Meditate on the central energy spinal highway
Slender as the lotus stem fiber
Let Shakti reveal Shiva
Is the Caduceus, wand of Hermes and Mercury, and the symbol of the medical profession, a representation of what Shiva says here?
I acknowledge the Kundalini pathway morphed on to the Caduceus from the Net.
Tantra says that the awakened Kundalini Shakti travels from the root muladhara chakra through the brahma nadi within the central energy pathway of sushumna , though five chakras, swadishthana, manipuraka, anahata, visuddhi and ajna to reach Shiva’s abode at the sahasrara.
This is the path of the yogi. Swami Satyananda says: were kundalini to travel through the right pathway pingala the seeker would be a healer, and were it through the left the seeker a prophet.
Swami Satyananda is kind. Others warn that were the kundalini to travel any other path other than the brahma nadi of the sushumna, the seeker would lose his mind!
Of the 72.000 energy pathways in our mind body system, three are most important. The sushumna, the central nadi, within which rests the slender lotus stem of the brahma nadi that Shiva refers to, is the most important energy highway. That is the driveway of Shakti in her journey to Shiva.
The pingala to the right is considered masculine, representing the sun, and relating to the rational left brain. Ida to the left is feminine, representing the moon and relating to the visual right brain. They are also associated with the breath energy flow through the right and left nostrils, alternating every 80 minutes. As the breath energy changes over, briefly the energy flows through the sushumna. As this period of energy flow through the sushumna is increased, Shakti awakens and rises through the sushumna to her abode at the sahasrara.
Chakras are located at the intersection of sushumna, ida and pingala, at 6 points starting points from muladhara to ajna. It’s interesting to note the similarity between the Caduceus symbol, the wand of Hermes and Mercury, now symbolising the medical profession, with the three nadis and chakras. In the Caduceus too, the tw snakes intersect six times around the central staff. What’s the significance? Hope someone has the answer.
Anyone seriously interested in this subject should read Swami Satyananda Saraswati’s Kundalini Tantra published by Bihar School of Yoga, and Serpent Power by Sir John Osborne published by Ganesh & Co.
Swami Satyananda Saraswati equates Pingala with body, Ida with mind and Sushumna with energy, in representing the mind body energy system. Each of these nadis conveys powerful signals through the chakras, perhaps electrical. Balance between Ida and Pingala is very important both in material and spiritual life. Sushumna is the subtlest and the most powerful carrier, the kundalini highway.
This Dharana, focusing exercise, is complementary to the last dharana on the sahasrara chakra with gratitude meditation. One can practise this dharana as a prelude to the previous one, visualizing the kundalini moving through the brahma nadi in the form of a slender lotus stem. The muladhara in which kundalini rests is in fact the root of the lotus as it floats on our mind body energy space. It’s like the lotus that blooms from Vishnu’s navel as he rests on the ocean of milk, with Brahma sitting atop!
The difference here is that Shiva sits atop the thousand petal lotus that rises from the root chakra. The lotus stem runs through the sushumna along the brahma nadi. Kundalini rises through the stem to find her other half atop the sahasrara. How beautiful to visualize!
As always with kundalini, a word of caution. In practising the dharanas outlined in the Vigyana Bhairava Tantra, stay with the mental effort and focus. Do not indulge in any other physical exercise, japa, mantra or ritual. These can be very dangerous. In a blog, description of these techniques can at best be for information and learning. One needs the support of one who has travelled this path by one’s side to travel with the kundalini.
I had bad experiences in putting book knowledge to practice and suffered. Whatever little success and understanding i had came with experiential support.