Enlightenment of head, heart, and belly

I plan to write about Julia’s state within the next few days because it seems wonderful and interesting to me. But before I do, as a sort of prequel, I’d like to give readers a chance to familiarize themselves with the following ideas.

The first idea is that our sense of “me” or awareness is found in various physical locations in the body. The three main locations are usually said to be the head, heart, and belly.

The second idea is that there are several kinds of enlightenment, each of which corresponds to some extent to one of those locations.

The best introduction to these ideas that I know is this talk by Adyashanti:

Awakening on the Level of Mind, Heart, and Gut

This book is also helpful:

The Little Book of Hara by Peter Wilberg

It’s free with Amazon Prime.

These ideas are reminiscent of some that we find in very old texts. For example, according to the Brahma Upanishad (II, 9), purusha (consciousness) inhabits the navel, heart, throat, and head. Each region corresponds to a state of consciousness: the navel to waking, the head to sleep, the heart to dreamless sleep, and the head to turiya. (I am indebted to Yoga: Immortality and Freedom by Mircea Eliade, a truly magnificent book, for drawing my attention to the facts in this paragraph.)

The author who has written most about these ideas, as far as I know, is Anadi (Aziz Kristof). I am mentioning his writings because I think they are interesting. I am not recommending him as a teacher or retreat leader. He has been accused by former students of sexual abuse. Anadi has incorporated these ideas into an extremely complex system that contains many details, but here is the basic idea in his own words:

In our [Anadi’s] teaching, the term ‘I am’ refers to the subjectivity of the beyond. ‘Transcendent I am’ refers to that subjectivity as a whole, which itself has three dimensions: universal I am (also called universal consciousness), absolute I am (or, the ‘source’), and primordial I am (the immanent and highest dimension of the divine). In the human body there are three portals that each lead to samadhi in one of these three dimensions. Samadhi in universal I am is realized through the portal at the back of the head; samadhi in absolute I am is realized through the portal of tan t’ien in the lower belly; and primordial I am is realized through the immanent portal hidden within essence-me, at the bottom of the forehead.’

Source: Anadi’s website Jan. 2019 (archived)

Photo: Win Tun Naing

4 thoughts to “Enlightenment of head, heart, and belly”

  1. I am currently following the ‘awareness watching awareness’ method as described by Michael Langford. One of the things I am sometimes contemplating is if it is necessary to choose a centre of awareness or not. I think it is possible to watch your awareness in a centre, but I feel it quickly becomes a meditation on the centre itself, and not on the awareness. So more of a chakra meditation. As I currently understand Michael Langford the only thing you should do is to watch your awareness.

    1. By raising this subject I didn’t mean to suggest that people should or shouldn’t follow Michael Langford’s advice. People who talk about these things are not in Ramana’s tradition. The reason I brought this subject up is because I’m planning to write an article about my girlfriend’s state, and she has become radically transformed in a certain way, and her transformation is addressed by these ideas but not by Ramana’s ideas.

      I think it’s interesting, though, to recall that Ramana himself said the I-thought feels like “I” and it’s located in the head while we’re awake.

      I don’t think these people are doing anything like meditating “on” chakras because they say they are not focusing on objects. They say they are concerned only with awareness and subjectivity. Zen (at least some kinds of Zen) makes a very big deal about moving awareness to the belly. They’re not meditating on the belly.

    2. P.S. I should have said in my previous reply that Adyashanti (if I understand him correctly) isn’t talking about practice. He’s talking about types of enlightenment. Ramana, as you know, doesn’t recognize types of enlightenment. For him and Michael there is only manonasha.

  2. How interesting that the public persona of Anadi — now Aadi — seems so much like that of the late Adi Da, who also changed his name frequently and slept with his students. And now he has taken the same name as well. Coincidence?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *