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Note: My maya-gaia website, evolving since 1997, is a chronicle of my passing all considered opinion
through the lens of my Nirvikalpa Samadhi with both an open-mind and healthy skepticism.

The Extrapolation of Samadhi

How the Extrapolation of Transcendent Experiences has created a chaotic landscape of religious and metaphysical contradiction, ambiguity, controversy, confusion and fantasy.

Nirvikalpa Samadhi presents the ultimate paradox in that while it provides the certain realization of our absolute oneness- the extrapolation of that experience has resulted in religious divisions that threaten to tear our world apart.

Although the Bible has passages that incite intolerance, Christianity has evolved to repudiate interpreting such passages literally and has accommodated to peacefully coexist in a modern multicultural global community. In contrast, Islam has not emerged from it's medieval roots, where Mohammad's divine words prescribe violence against infidels and the great majority of Immans subscribe to a fundamentalist interpretation of Koranic tenants including the call to Jihad. See The Evil Isn't Islam by Daniel Pipes with ongoing forum on topic.

What can I say about the vast body of religious and metaphysical thought, filled with an almost infinite variety of proprietary ritual and prescription whose goal is enlightenment? Is Dharma all a lie?

Was it that I was uniquely blessed with a mystical synchronicity in having all the circumstances come together that precipitated my Samadhi- meeting the right girl at the right time of desire and naivety of mind and growing the right herb? Although the prescription that I could formulate from my total experience is certainly less doctrinaire and complicated than any in the Vedic, Tantric or Buddhist traditions it's components may be even more difficult to deliberately fashion and acquire.

The traditional paths of yoga and meditation, although arduous and challenging, can be practiced and learned and have created an entire paradigm upon which billions of humans have based their lives. Their precepts have inspired the founding of fundamental spiritual principles which have built entire civilizations and today offer a wisdom which is raising new scientific thought to an exponentially greater appreciation and understanding of nature.

Examining the Ultimate Question What prerequisite is there for our dissolution into the light, bliss and love of Brahman consciousness either temporarily in samadhi or at death?

The major factor in our human psyche that is both a blessing and curse is our tendency to intellectualize, extrapolate, interpret and theorize from our samadhi experience. It is recognized that all the great religions are the result of authentic transcendent visions that befell their founding prophets but in Vedism- doctrine continued to evolve over centuries by successive yogi extrapolating their transcendent visions. To a much lesser degree, Buddhism underwent a similar "gnostic" evolution. Islam regards Muhammad's revelations as fixed in the Koran- directly inspired by Allah although some sects such as the Sufi have extrapolated from subsequent realizations. (Some scholars have brought into question the authenticity of Muhammad's transcendent revelation as they resemble a collage of elements drawn from a number of extant religious disciplines.) Judaism is a revealed religion that forbids any addition to or modification of the initial revelation given directly by God to certain chosen emissaries such as Moses and Solomon. Hebrews consider the Torah to be the unassailable word of Jehovah except for the Cabalist who remain open to new mystical revelation. In Christianity the teachings of Jesus and word of God recorded in the Bible are unmodified by subsequent revelations (except for the Gnostic's inspired reinterpretations) but certainly have been intellectually compromised. What all the revealed religions have in common is that subsequent philosophical and pseudo-inspired extrapolations- have led to an infinity of denominations and sects- often resulting in much persecution and bloodshed.

boomeritus effect Ken Wilber defines and analysizes the interplay of transcendent and rational consciousness that results in a variety of states and stages of enlightenment.

Samadhi Trilogy- excerpted from a longer article by Michael Comans
An in-depth examination of the intricate and subtle evolution of Samadhi in Vedantic, Zen and Yogic disciplines and interpretations of its role in transcendence, enlightenment and ultimate liberation.

The word Samadhi first appears in the Hindu scriptures in the Maitrayni Upanishad (6.18, 34), a text which does not belong to the strata of the early Upanishads and which mentions five of the eight limbs of classical Yoga. The word also occurs in some of the Yoga and Sannyasa Upanishads of the Atharvaveda. Samadhi would thus seem to be a part of yogic practice which has entered into the later Upanishadic literature through such texts as the Yoga Upanishads as a result of what Mircea Eliade calls "the constant osmosis between the Upanishadic and yogic milieus."

Sankara, the most famous of all the Vedanta teachers, does not set up Nirvikalpa Samadhi as a spiritual goal. Samadhi does not of itself give rise to the knowledge of oneness as the modern exponents of Vedanta would have us believe.

The Wanderling Exceptional autobiography and insights of an American Zen disciple presenting a compendium of intricately linked spiritual resources and a free online course on Dharma.

The Distance Between Spiritual Experience and Interpretation by Julian Walker- and forum discussion. It is undeniable that human beings in all times and cultures have been hardwired for spiritual experiences - some of course more than others. But is this proof of any of the multiple metaphysical belief systems that we tend, I would suggest, to superimpose onto the experience? The central difficulty here is that the altered state of a spiritual experience is so convincing (and so important, beautiful and meaningful in its own right) and we are so suggestible during and afterward, that it is almost ubiquitous to be convinced that the experience is undeniable (or at the very least strong) proof of whatever belief system the ensuing interpretation is coming from - when in actuality it is nothing of the sort!

Update: 04 28 08 Maya-Gaia has created a webpage on the subject of- Love Without Object which was "experienced" while "I" was in the non-dual and subjectless state of Nirvikalpa Samadhi. It examines the different ways one actually feels/directs the emotion of love while in a dual/phenomenal subjective state of conciousness as compared to the Love experienced in non-duality.

Rumi says, "There is no Love greater than Love with no object. For then you, yourself, have become love, itself."

In addition there is an even greater variety of spiritual belief systems originating from sheer intellectual invention by messianic visionaries. This process has been accelerating via the Internet which is becoming flooded with speculation and theory of philosophy, metaphysics, pseudo-science, occult and conspiracy of every imaginable kind. Many concepts find a constituency and become in effect cults- with gullible members whose lives become identified and even dedicated to its ideology. For every high-profile example like Scientology or Theosophy there are thousands of mini-cults arising from self-assumed gurus promoting their proprietary paths to fanatical beliefs or enlightenment on Internet blogs. (Of course one should be restrained in distinguishing between cults and true religion as at least some of the latter have all the criteria to qualify as a cult.)

So the tendency is for those most possessed of an ideology to invent practices and ritual that reinforce the unique expression of worship and so after generations of innovation we find for instance in the most flagrant example- the Vedanta inspired protocols- an entire universe of dharma, bhakti, sadhana, assanas, sutra, sacred cosmology, mantras, yantras, mudra, nyasa, mandalas, chakras and yogas, etc. all in contention and many contradicting as prerequisite for attaining liberation. In The Flame and the Lotus E. R. Wilson writes: "The philosophies originating in India are a museum of the human mind." suggesting that the permutations that human imagination have applied to transcendent insight over thousands of years have grown an infinity of micro spiritual constructs that apply over a vast landscape of religious orders and sects.

Credibility of Transcendence This page will focus on the most intriguing aspect of noetics- the spectrum of episodes involving OOBs, NDEs and the more classical forms of consciousness identified in metaphysical tradition as samadhi, satori, moksha, or nirvana. Transcendent insight has given birth not only to recognized religions as in the revelations pronounced by Jesus, Moses, Buddha, Mohammad and the Vedanta but is an ongoing "free-for-all" adaptive process whereby "experiencers" extrapolate and integrate their "revelations" with selected aspects of metaphysics and/or science to invent new spiritual paradigms.

Maya Tantra Shakti- Here is an example of the extreme divisiveness and proprietary beliefs and practices that riddle the great body of the Vedantic religious landscape along with the ideological conflicts with Buddhism - almost all extrapolated via sheer philosophy and intellectualizing as opposed to transcendent knowing. - "In the Eighth Chapter of the unpublished Sammohana Tantra, it is said that Shamkara manifested on earth in the form of Shamkaracarya, in order to root out Buddhism from India. It compares his disciples and himself to the five Mahapreta (who form the couch on which the Mother of the Worlds rests), and identifies his maths with the Amnayas, namely, the Govardhana in Puri with Purvamnaya (the Sampradaya being Bhogavara), and so on with the rest."

Tantra's major philosophical distinction from its Vedic source is that the material world is real and not an illusion or Maya and is ultimately manifested in the union of Shiva/Shakti. The literal sexual practices has made Vamacara and Kaula Tantra notorious but I find the exquisite particulars in the practice of Kundalini chakra meditation as in Dharma of Tantra its most disturbing and potentially dangerous aspect.

Visionary Paradigms- Expressing the Legacy of Transcendent Insight to Integrative Spirituality and/or the Gaia Imperative.

Who am I to question the validity of any particular methodology prescribed for attaining Samadhi? I simply admit to being extremely skeptical not only of the moralistic protocols of the historic Vedic and Buddhist spiritual traditions but also of New Age purveyors of Yoga directed to the same end...although I find some neotantra concepts reasonably coherent. My main discomfort is not in the description and interpretation of Samadhi, nirvana, enlightenment, revelation, moksha, satori or gnosis in Vedic and metaphysical literature (with objection to the New Age tendency to equate OOB and NDE and other transpersonal episodes with the samadhic experience) but in all the proprietary exercises and ritual that have been invented and are prescribed to attain it.

My one prior, period of attempting a vaguely doctrinaire-based Kundalini meditation ended in near-trauma so now the closest I come to deliberately trying to connect with God Consciousness (not through any desire to repeat the samadhi experience while alive) but for the sole purpose of communicating my love and thanks- is when I'm trying to get to sleep. Then I meditate with two elements of practice in mind- focusing on my breath and on the mantra- Be Here Now made famous by Ram Dass...then either settling my mind to accept whatever visions arise spontaneously or sometimes initiating a counting sequence without any envisioning. I have yet to experience any significant trans-conscious state and almost invariably simply go to sleep...which is fine with me.

Update 09 15 2013: I've added Primordial Rhythm Meditation Part 4 video on youtube where Kelsey demonstrates her beginning a practice of PRM. End Update

Update 02 10 2016: Primordial Rhythm Meditation Part 5 - documentary youtube video. An update on over three years of practice that features the optimum drumming tempo for evoking the voice of the water - that I associate with communion with my ancestors and supreme spirit.

Nirvikalpa - From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This is the last version of my rewrite of the Nirvikalpa article (as of 16:53, 6 August 2007) which was essentially gutted by subsequent editing by members of the Wiki Hinduism Project who are aggressively biased as to what kind of content and references are appropriate for any topic over which they can technically claim jurisdiction. They show little tolerance for ecumenical or Neo Hinduism perspectives and the only way to inject such concepts into any article over which they have assumed executive editing privileges is to create an Analogous Concepts section which is the only refuge where there is at least a chance that views outside the purview of Hindu fundamentalism will survive. (this version is subject to updating with maya-gaia's ongoing edits.)

Upanishad Synchronicity I examine the extraordinary synchronicities in my Nirvikalpa Samadhi journey with the cosmography and events in both the Katha and Brihadaranyaka Upanishads. "A space as wide as a razor's edge or a fly's wing" describes a gap between the two halves of the cosmic egg through which a soul passes on its journey to Ishvara. Other metaphors apply to the three stages in the absorption of consciousness in my ascension and my confrontation with the cosmic gatekeeper and subsequent being-annihilation and transformation to non dual union with the godhead.

About Guru's Bad Behavior- An examination of the issue of how even authentic realization may not imbue a Guru with either an ideology or a personal character that matches the Dharma ideal.

Samadhi Links Resources that offer largely scholarly perspectives on the first-person scriptural archives as well as post modern approaches to nondual consciousness.

Samadhi Anecdotes Examples of first-person anecdotal accounts of what seem to be relatively authentic Nirvikalpa Samadhi. In most cases both memory warp and the constructivism factor may color to varying degrees how the experience is translated.

Credibility Of Transcendent Revelations To what degree can first-person accounts of samadhi revelations be considered credible?

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