Cosmic Consciousness

THE universe consists of a Mahābrahmāṇḍa, or grand Cosmos, and of numerous Bṛhatbrahmāṇḍa, or macrocosms evolved from it. As is said by the Nirvāṇa- Tantra, all which is in the first is in the second. In the latter are heavenly bodies and beings, which are microcosms reflecting on a minor scale the greater worlds which evolve them. “As above, so below.” The mystical maxim of the West is stated in the Viśvasāra-Tantra asfollows: “What is here is elsewhere; what is not here is nowhere” (yadhihāsti tadanyatra yannehāsti na tatkvacit). The macrocosm has its meru, or vertebral column, extending from top to bottom. There are fourteen regions descending from Satyaloka, the highest. These are the seven upper and the seven nether worlds (vide ante). The meru of human body is the spinal column, and within it are the cakras, in which the worlds are said to dwell. In the words of the Śāktānanda-Tarangiṇī, they are piṇḍamadhyesthitā. Satya has been said to be in the sahasrārā, and Tapah, Janah, Mahah, Svah, Bhuvah, Bhūh in the ājnā, viśuddhi, anahata, maṇipūra, svādhiṣṭhāna, and mūlādhāra lotuses respectively. Below mūlādhāra and in the joints, sides, anus, and organs of generation are the nether worlds. The bones near the spinal column are the kulaparvata,- The seven main chains of mountains in Bhārata (see Viṣṇu-Puraṇ a, Bk. II, chap. iii). Such are he correspondences as to earth. Then as to water. The nadis are the rivers. The seven substances of the body (dhatu);- Skin, blood, muscle, tendon, bone, fat, semen,- are the seven islands. Sweat, tears, and the like are the oceans. Fire exists in the mūlādhāra, suṣumṇā, navel and elsewhere: – The kāmāgni in mūlādhāra, badala in the bones; in suṣumṇa the fire of lightning, and in the navel earthly fire. As the worlds are supported by the prāṇa and other vāyus (“airs”), so is the body supported by the ten vāyus, prāṇa, etc. There is the same ākāśa (ether) in both.(As to distribution of elements in the cakras, see chap. iv, Bhūtaśuddhi-Tantra.) The witness within is the puruṣa without, for the personal soul of the microcosm corresponds to the cosmic soul (hiraṇyagarbha) in the macrocosm.


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