I acknowledge this graphic from the Net.


In this 89 dharana and 114 verse of Vigyana Bhairava Tantra, Shiva says;

Closing ears and lower opening

Meditating on the sound without vowel and consonant

Realize Shiva state


Practitioners of yoga and tantra would probably correlate this dharana with Ashwini mudra or even Vajroli, which are related to contracting and closing the rectal and sphincter muscles and passages. I am not a practitioner of these advanced yoga techniques, and while I am sure such techniques can be very useful for certain disabilities, I believe Shiva tells something more profound here.

The closure or contraction or even the mere awareness of the ‘lower opening’, through breath and muscle control, presumably either the anal or penile or vaginal gates, relates to the muladhara chakra awakening and kundalini raising. Merely focusing on the muladhara, perineum, or the bottom most point of the spine is likely for many men to be distracted by sexual fantasies. I have observed this happen with myself and many other practitioners honest enough to admit to truth.

The closure of ears physically with one’s hands would immediately produce a ringing sound within, one tha Shiva calls without vowels or consonants. Combining the anal contraction through muscle control, and holding it with retention of breath, and combining it with the closure of one’s ears focusing on the formless sound, creates a very different experience. While contracting the rectal muscles, putting pressure on the muladhara chakra, one would need to control one’s breath depending on comfort level.

This practice may not be for everyone.

What interests me in this dharana is the formless sound that cannot be captured in language. Is this the ‘unstruck’ sound of the anahata? What connection does it have with the pranava mantra, AUM? is this what en refers to as the ‘sound of one hand clapping’? Or ‘sound of the falling tree in the forest where no one is’?

Is this dharana of Shiva related to the sense of hearing or is it related to the sense of feeling? Or is it of both?

I found no explanation on these points with Joo and others, who have written on the Vigyana Bhairava Tantra. Perhaps a reader can offer guidance.

I found the posture of the Balinese Ganesha, pictured above, interesting. Both heels press against the prostate and rectal points, the muladhara chakra. This posture is quite unlike depictions of Ganesha in India, in which he is in sukhasana, padmasana or with one leg draped over the other. Ganesha is the muladhara deity. His massive elephantine ears as well as his trunk are highly sensitive to sound and smell. Is there a relevance to Ganesha in this dharana?