WHAT WILL BE AFTER DEATH
Q: One of the most significant comments you gave for people who had never done yoga was very practical: in the 8th chapter, the 16th shloka you described all the experiences which happen right after death, when the soul is leaving the body. It’s very detailed and describes the feeling of dizziness, the sound of the bells, shining appearance of Time and two chances to reunite with It, given to the soul.
It’s incredibly detailed, and those who has never read any yogic text are very impressed by this comment. Where did those words arrive from, based on what experience, how did you come up with it?
Guruji: After my first experience of samadhi. That was the experience I went through – and was able to describe it. My intention was to share this information with all persons, who are pure of heart and devotional by nature.
If such a person accepts these words by reading Gita, at least he will know what he could expect after death, the reactions and sensations.
If he has a really devotional nature and believes in divinity – he may be able to keep his mind focused during the time of the death and may go through it.
For others, those who were never devotional, had no such experiences, which never read my commentary and never had much faith in Indian religious mythology – their reaction may be different.
Those yogis, who practice Kriya yoga, are going through these experiences often; and when the sound of Nada starts – they will listen to those sounds, resembling thousands of roaring lions and thousands of breaking waves… They will be ready to pass through.
For them it will be a great experience. That’s why I thought that it was very important to share this information.
Q: Is this description based on the personal experience of yogic samadhi?
Guruji: Yes; that’s why after this experience I was able to revive myself – and able to discuss it. Then I began to study other people’s experiences – those who were dying; and I was unfortunate enough to see some of them die. I could see that they were about to leave.
Q: Can we safely assume that for all souls departure is happening in the same manner?
Guruji: Almost for everybody. Almost. I became firmly convinced that the God, or the Creator, or Ishwar – whoever He is – is treating everybody equally. So everyone will go through this final experience in the same manner; but reaction to this experience will remain individual.
We need to steel ourselves, to train ourselves to be ready to face it. Our reaction will affect the result of this passage.
Fantastic experience! If I’m asked to give an example, how would a person feel during it, I would say: just try to imagine a mosquito, a fly, who is witnessing an atomic blast – it will be similar to it. Maybe not even that magnitude. That’s why the reaction is important – only the person, who experienced it before will be ready to face it; or the person with extreme devotion, who believes that this is a fact and says “I will face it” – he or she will also go through it.
Q: And those who went beyond that state?
Guruji: They will directly reach the realm of pure spirits.
Q: Those spirits, whose names are pronounced like musical notes in that realm?
Guruji: Yes, those who are beyond 5 elements. They live where all the memories and all the experiences live. Where do the spirits live? There all the experiences and all the memories also live.
Q: If they are pure spirits – why do they need all those memories and experiences?
Guruji: For entertainment.
Q: Aren’t these human emotions mostly comic for them now?
Guruji: We still don’t know why they need to collect all these emotions and memories – perhaps, just for entertainment…
Q: Is it safe to say that the souls are moving to the realm of pure consciousness after death, not returning back to sansaric circles?
Guruji: Yes, we can say that sansaric circle engages only 2% of our brain. Otherwise it is just a play; most of the ancient texts call it “lila”. Just a play. We have Ram Lila and Krishna Lila also, beside the Lila of the creation.
Q: People keep asking the same question: they don’t understand some moments, connected with jivatma, dehi, consciousness and individuality; when we die, we go to the astral world and we are in vayu sharira.
The individuality, the consciousness preserved as a previous jivatma – does dehi also live in vayu sharira? They already obtained astral experience, is that true?
Perhaps, with time the vayu sharira also transforms and only jivatma remains; then individuality does not have any value as it is? Is it just the instrument to obtain the experience of jivatma? If the vayu sharira remains the same in a new birth – does vayu sharira enter the uterus of the potential mother with the same old consciousness, same individuality – but then just forgets the previous self?
Guruji: If you remain as a ghost, earth-bound, the vayu sharira will be there. But if you are advanced enough to go beyond the solar system – then vayu sharira will not be there. It will be a very different thing – it will become a pure consciousness. For the sake of giving it a name you can call it “the body of the consciousness” or “pure consciousness” where your individuality, your personal experience will remain with you. Vayu sharira will remain only in the earth’s atmosphere.
If you become a ghost or you are not advanced enough to go beyond the solar system, then the astral body will obtain so many different gradations – or whatever you will call them – you will experience them all.
The vayu sharira is your chance of future development, because you’re a yogi. If you want to develop your vayu sharira – then you need to work on all nadis, so vayu will flow in every nadi inside your body.
Then your vayu sharira will become very condensed – and you can choose to remain on Earth in a vayu sharira. Which is a valid body. And you can continue to practice and keep developing your consciousness to a very high level. Then you’re free to leave the solar system and go wherever your destination will take you.
It is just a stepping stone – to go through vayu sharira. Otherwise ordinary ghosts look quite horrible, almost dangerous – because their vayu sharira is not complete, not condensed enough – so they appear very ugly and frightening.
Q: Will vayu carry the consciousness?
Guruji: Vayu will carry the memories and the consciousness.
Q: Which will get forgotten and erased?
Guruji: Yes, it will remain stored in the subconscious. And it will reflect most of your behavior also. But with a first breath it will come inside – you will forget most of the things. Till then your mother’s breath will carry you forward. When you get the perfect vayu sharira – you will never take another birth.
Q: Why so?
Guruji: If your body is perfect – then not a single nadi remains not filled with the vayu, then vayu sharira is completed – and you don’t need to take another birth. You can continue to do whatever you want, continue to develop your consciousness, because – I said it before and I’ll repeat it – wisdom is the real entertainment for the wise. You will be hooked to that particular entertainment.
Q: It is the first time I hear from you that we don’t need to take another birth when vayu sharira is…
Guruji: When vayu sharira is good and complete.
Q: So the spirit keeps getting into other bodies to…?
Guruji: In hope to get a perfect body – because of different karmic levels the level of consciousness is not developed enough – so we don’t even become aware of it (the spirit).
There is some great mystery and power on Earth – because only on Earth you can develop your consciousness to a limitless level. We have not yet discovered this mystery, but it is there. Maybe with time we will discover it.
Most of the sanchit karma is considered as prarabdha karma – because it shaped a probable future in this particular birth. As I keep telling: every karma originates in your mind, in your consciousness.
If you’re able to clean up your mind and consciousness, able to develop them to a certain limit and beyond that – then you will be beyond karma. At that time most of the impressions are forming a particular behavior pattern in this lifetime.
That’s why the ancient yogis were teaching (these were basic teachings, if you considerеr them from modern psychological point of view) to break the habit: to leave home, leave society, live alone in the jungles, not to try to make money, beg for food.
It may sound like extreme measures, but these things actually break the habit. It develops a different perspective, and you begin to see your own origins and your karmas in retrospective.
Then a different understanding develops. And you’re able to decipher what to do and what not to do. If you’re continuously doing something, affected by the past impression – then you will be sinking deeper in a spider’s web and will not be able to come out.
But if you’re in a situation to see, to differentiate your actions – then you thread a fine line in between and remain free. This is what yoga will give.
All individuals are alive because prana is giving them life. “Prana” means life. The brain is supported by the heart and supplied with the blood, which is a carrier of pure oxygen.
That means prana is giving life to you: all your senses, indriyas are able to work. Simply by sensing organs you’ll be not able to understand what prana is: for this you need to become extremely sensitive and aware about the mechanism of life, coursing through your body.
The moment you will become aware of life, of the force and the source of life – you will begin to understand the nature of prana at some level. And as you will grow in your practice of yoga, your consciousness will develop more – then you will realize the basic nature of prana. You can correspond it with life: life is based on prana and prana is giving life; ultimately it all will go back to prana, activated inside your physical body.
Q: Is there a specific center in our body, which is responsible for this direct communication?
Guruji: Matsyendranath has already answered this question in Gorakh Bodh: “Where is jiva?” He said: “As ghee is present in milk so jiva is present in the body – it’s everywhere.”
Q: What if somebody is practicing sincerely, but still not progressing?
Guruji: It is impossible, if a person is practicing sincerely – he could not continue to make mistakes. That is not possible.
Q: So the practice corrects itself, doesn’t it?
Guruji: The one will become more refined and more sensitive; he will become aware of what he’s doing wrong and will ask the Guru whether he is correct in his practice. And he will be corrected – if he needs to be corrected. To keep practicing sincerely and keep making mistakes is not possible. I’ve never seen it happen.
Q: Have you also seen anyone who, in the first couple of years, is practicing twice a day, but still not progressing?
Guruji: No, I had not seen a single person who would not progress. Everyone is progressing.
Q: Does Prana stay with vayu sharira – or does it prana leave?
Guruji: Vayu is the main carrier of prana. You will begin to practice real pranayama in your vayu sharira – so far you are doing just “shvanasayama”, breathayama.
Q: Whatever type of prana is present in the body, it travels to vayu sharira, doesn’t it?
Guruji: Yes. It attaches itself to the vayu. I will ask you a question: how to differentiate between jivatma and prana? They are always going together.
Q: And about the mantra, which we recite during the practice – Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya; why do we use this particular mantra?
Guruji: Only Paramahamsas are supposed to use this mantra for the practice.
I have not come across any other organization or Vaishnav’s sampradaya who initiated this mantra. If we look into the Sanskrit dictionary – the word “vasu” means “jivatma”. That is to invoke your own jivatma, which resides in the heart. Your jivatma is your devata, your god; so this implies to that. Also “Vasudeva” literally means “the son of Vasudeva”, it is Krishna’s name as all the krishnaites are saying. For the yogis it is Vasudeva: your jivatma, your immortal spirit inside you. You can consult any Sanskrit dictionary, look for the word “vasu” – and you will see the meaning of it.
Q: Was this mantra given to you by your teacher?
Guruji: Yes, it goes into the lineage. And they say – it can be done only if you rise above the effects of your karma. So any person, who is practicing it simply by reading about this mantra in some books – because it’s a very commonly known mantra – but without khechari mudra, will not succeed. If you do it, it will shake up your life.
Q: Technically speaking, the movement of prana and the breath, when the syllables of mantra are placed throughout a torso and a heart, through the chakras – people often come to a wrong conclusion about piercing the chakras…
Guruji: See, jivatma is felt with the movement of the prana. These are special junctions of the prana, where prana has some different types of activities. Those levels are the keys to open that particular lock; that’s why they are used in a certain place in a certain way.
Khechari is an important part, because our Gurus say: as long as the tongue continues to remain in khechari mudra – you will remain beyond the karmic effect of all your past karmas for the duration of that time. When you have gone beyond karma – only then this mantra can be done. It is a yogic mantra – and it will remain yogic.
Q: And sometimes this mantra is said for the departed?
Guruji: Yes, but departed, they say, go to Goloka – to be near Vasudeva.
Q: And what about the protective mantra which we are often reciting: “Om Shailendra vidmahe…”?
Guruji: Yes, it works.
Q: How did this mantra come to you?
Guruji: I think it was 2004. We were having Shakti puja here, in this room. It looked different then, there was a wall behind me…
At that time we were just offering the morning arati, and the whole room suddenly echoed with this mantra, maybe 3-4 times. I looked at the people who were present – no reaction. I asked: “Have you heard?”
They did not hear anything. I wrote it down immediately. That’s how it came. It actually took me quite some time to decipher its meaning.
My name was mentioned there, but it is also a synonym of Giriraj Ji…
People could say: “Look at the scale of his vanity – now he’s creating the mantra with his own name!”; but then the understanding came: it was an utterly different thing.
I knew that Giriraj, Shailendra and Yogiraj are all used to address Krishna in this area – even though the majority of people here are devotees of Krishna, they still call him “Yogiraj”.
It means “We know Giriraj; we keep Yogiraj Krishna in our mind; and may Goraksh – the protector of the cows – inspire us.” This is the rough meaning of it. And it really invokes some blessings of Giriraj Ji – and maybe blessings from Gorakhnath and Shri Krishna as well.
Q: Some disciples perceive that mantra as a mantra addressed to you personally.
Guruji: My name is there – of course, it could be that.
Q: You also elaborated on the famous mantra Om Tat Sat in your commentaries to Gita – so it’s covered; but I want to ask you about bija mantras: so-ham, sauh. Which is a bija mantra of hridaya, sauh?
Guruji: So-ham. There is a famous saying in Hindi that a person with a very good heart is called su-hridaya.
And so the syllable SU comes into the heart – if SU is established there, one will become a person with a very good heart – because he will realize that Vasudeva is present there. And when realization comes – then, of course, such awareness will change everything: your life, your being will become very different.
Q: Such a mantra is never given or practiced by itself, right?
Guruji: Sometimes they are given in a certain way.
Q: In what lineage?
Guruji: Not exactly in a lineage, but they are given for those who are already deep into the subject – sometimes they practice bija mantras.
If you’re going deeper – to the petals of the chakras – all bija mantras are present there. And so, if you’re trying to understand the vibration of a certain petal by doing that particular seed mantra and finally you will catch the real vibration, coming from the sound of OM – that will take you far. But if those bija mantras are practiced just for some worldly reasons – then the results will not be so good.
Q: Same with the so-ham?
Guruji: So-ham is the seed mantra of the breath, which we keep repeating. If you become aware of it – then, of course, you will go very deep in your own self, in the ocean of consciousness.
You will dive deep – and that is recommended, yes. Practicing those bija mantras without any real purpose will be like trying to ignite a little fire using an atomic bomb instead of a matchbox.
Q: Have you met people who actually mastered those bija mantras in their sadhana?
Guruji: Sadly, I’ve never come across such people. But I am very optimistic – there must be such people. They usually don’t like to appear in public. They keep away.
…All these different upayas, given by astrologers (except using high-quality jewels), all the recitations of the mantras of a certain planet – it is just an attempt to change a destiny you are unaware of – at all.
So you will be just moving in a circle without reaching your destination. It is better to face destiny with a brave heart. Face it – and maybe you will not be so afraid.
You should decide: ”Whatever comes, I will face it” instead of trying to escape any hypothetical problem which may come in future.
If you are going through some problematic time – you need to sit down and try to relax first. Then look at the problem from every possible angle – and then make your decision. If you run after upayas, you will never be able to make a good decision, and the problem will continue to possess you. This is what I think.
Q: Sometimes you recommend iron rings…
Guruji: Because they are earthly things and your body is earthly body, so if it is used wisely – then it will have a direct effect on your psychology, your mind. Then maybe some positive thinking will start – and with positive thinking some positive decisions will come; and with positive decisions positive results may follow. It will create a chain reaction.
Q: Yes, the stones are working…
Guruji: Pure gemstones have a direct impact on your thinking. You also will attract more positive people – which is also good, because discussions and interactions with positive people will affect your mind in a positive way. And positive decisions will be made!
ON TIME AND PRACTICE
I practiced for 20 hours because I read in some of Yogananda’s books that Ram Prasad was doing 20 hours every day; I could not understand exactly how he could manage 20 hours of practice in 24 hours?
I tried it – and you already know my discovery: that you practice for 20 hours, then you eat something and go to sleep for 12-14-15 hours; your day will be different, it will not be limited to 24 hours, it will stretch.
I also understood that a break was needed for a biological clock. These adjustments in my schedule actually did a trick and I discovered that I need to sleep, I cannot remain awake for 20 hours.
Then, in about 2 hours, you will be ready to do it again; but you will need to sleep for 14 hours straight. And you will sleep like dead.
Q: In fact, you were establishing your own hours and your day could stretch beyond 24 hours?
Guruji: Of course! If I had not tried it – I would never have discovered the mechanism of it.
Q: If I’ve been practicing for 8 years already – at which point, at which level I need to increase my practice to progress? To do more of the 2nd, the 3rd, the 4th Kriya or to keep whatever you gave me?
Guruji: Yes, this is suggested for you specifically – so do it.
Q: But keeping this proportion regularly leaves very little time for anything else.
Guruji: Just manage it; you can decrease the number if you don’t have much time. But if you’re ambitious enough – you’ll manage the time.
Q: You stated that Kriya develops the brain; what exactly is this development? Is it an activation of certain portions, certain lobes, certain compartments?
Guruji: We cannot assess it from anatomical point of view – but your brain will grow in size and it will produce more neurons; that’s why you will become aware of so many different things. We keep ignoring the brain, we start to talk about the mind and this and that; but the brain is the main seat of the mind – similar to a body being a seat of your spirit.
Brain development is very important. Body is just a support system for the brain. Look at the brain photographs and scans: it looks like an alien is sitting inside your head – and a body is just a vehicle of it.
This is what all Upanishadas and yogic texts are saying. I discovered that only Kriya yoga is directly connected with development of the brain; nobody else ever talked about development of the brain.
I discovered that Kriya is actually concentrated on development of the brain! The every technic, from khechari to third, fourth or any level, including mahamudras, affect the head size – it starts to increase. That means – brain is developing. That’s how we become more aware, more conscious.
Q: Is it possible to pinpoint the specific part of the brain which is responsible for its development?
Guruji: That is for scientists to decide. We just know that the process is on.
I can add one more thing: scientists say that after we reach our 30-s, the neurons begin to die in millions. What I see is that with the practice of Kriya yoga, especially after meeting Babaji for the first time, neurons were not dying to that level.
That is guaranteed. Maybe even new neurons will start developing, hopefully. Just imagine what kind of practice we were had been doing before meeting Babaji and receiving his corrections. That was the great grace! There was mental nabhi kriya only – and after khechari every kriya was performed only mentally. That was it. Only khechari was required – and nobody was even stressing the importance of mahamudras!
People would do 1 to 3 mahamudras and they would think it was enough, it was better to sit in meditation. No wonder there were no results.
Q: Does any other school of Kriya offer anything more in terms of techniques?
Guruji: Not a single one, nothing. We are extremely lucky.
Q: Is this practice a process which turns on an alternative mode of the brain function? If samadhi is “switched on”, does it turn the brain into a different mode?
And after Samadhi – does the brain return to the previous patterns of the functionality or not? Lahiri Mahasaya said that after 5000 samadhis the mental state becomes different. Did he mean the switching to a different functionality mode of the brain, which is called sahaja samadhi?
Guruji: “Sahaj” doesn’t mean “easy”. When you have tolerated everything, which is there to be tolerated – then that state of mind is called “Sahaj”. So with samadhi you will become so mature, that perspective will be very different. This is what he meant.
Q: And does the brain remain in a different state?
Guruji: Of course. After experiencing and seeing so many things, which normal people could never even imagine – of course, your point of view will remain different. You’re a child once and now you are a grown-up man: even if you play with children you will never again become a child. All that experiences, awareness, your education, knowledge will remain with you. Have patience and carry on!