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Lahiri Mahasaya Mentions of the Chandi

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Panchanon Bhattacharya

There are so many people who represent themselves falsely in the name of Kriya Yoga. They want to portray themselves as true Masters but verily, they have nothing to offer. - Panchanon Bhattacharya

He compared such people with crocodiles in the Ganges river. Panchanon (also written Panchanan) Bhattacharya (1853-1919) was a disciple of Lahiri Mahasaya, who taught followers to spend up to very much time on the pranayama techniques of kriya yoga. Bhattacharya helped to spread Lahiri Mahasaya's teachings through his Arya Mission Institution that was set up around 1885, after Lahiri Mahasaya first had agreed to initiate him in Kriya if he renounced his sannyas vows and returned to a householder life. Bhattacharya did, was initiated, and then worked as a flower seller. Many disciples initiated by Sri Lahiri Mahasaya came to Panchanon for instruction on advanced kriyas.

The Aryya Mission Institution as founded by Panchanon Bhattacharya closed but was revived again in recent years. It seeks to translate the original Kriya Yoga literature, as written and explained by Lahiri Mahasaya in the Bengali language and first published by The Aryya Mission Institution between 1885 and 1910.

The Chandi

The first set of statements are rooted in commentaries to the Chandi part of the ancient Markandeya Purana [Ma] of India. The Chandi is also called Devi Mahatmya [Dm]. It tells how gods of old were defeated by asuras in a great battle and shooed from heaven. Then the gods sent forth their combined energies and formed the goddess Chandika. They gave her weapons, and she fought with and destroyed the asuras. After the victory, the gods offered a hymn of praise to the goddess and were reinstated [see Ma 473-532].

Lahiri puts kriya comments into this work too; he reads kriya yoga facets and kriya training into it, and decrees many of his own outlooks along with it. He treats main personages of the Chandi as allegorical forms, for example:

Chandi is taken to be Maya - Durga to be the Self - Madhu too is Maya, and so on. [Iv 117]

In Inner Victory [Iv] he lets personages of the work represent characteristics in an overall commentary adapted to and promoting his kriya yoga outlooks.

The page references that follow are to Inner Victory [Iv], and gist and paraphrases too. Direct quotations by Lahiri are interspersed.

Warming up

Form well seasoned, harmonious ignorance, for we live in ignorance of most things in the universe, and still may live in peace and harmony.

Holding onto one's Self is the beginning of great wisdom. [95]

He who tries to intimidate a woman to get her, is not ready for healthy, fulfilling family life. [71, 70]

The Lordly Dame [female attitude and so on] is in everyone in the shapes of peace and calm, grace and kindness, and much else. [98-99]

Beyond space: awareness and the I (Self)

Let the sound (shabda) be dissolved in its source. [56]

True awareness goes beyond space, even. [105]

Men who clearly have lost kingdom and properties, feel attached to them. Watch your attachments, then. [54] (7) MM

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Specialities from Lahiri Commentaries to the Chandi

LoThe path of the spinal cord leads into Great Bliss, we are told

THE NAUGHTY and very childish and egotistic are in for being routed. [cf. 123]

The spinal chord is The Dame, and Great Bliss is The Dame. [cf. 124, 127] (2)

The kutastha [third eye] has four sides: an entrance of creativity and eternity are among them. [cf. 135-26]

LoBy seeing the third eye, kutastha, one soon develops powers, it is said

INNER wisdom is Self, hence all-pervading. [cf. 127]

Pretty much well-being can be had through kriya. [cf. 126]

If women do kriya, they can soon achieve siddhi—The inscrutable Maya is the kutastha and Mahamaya is the cause of this world. [126, 121]

Be freed from trouble by kriya. [cf. 126] (4)

Through kriya practice is well-being won, and a tender heart too. [cf. 124]

All the gods are in your own body [so don't worry . . .] [122]

By holding onto the kutastha desires should be transcended [120, 119].

LoTo calm down counteracts much gross stupidity; it is often like that

KRIYA practice calms down the heart. [119]

"It seems I have become a fool," said a king. "What is this stupidity?" [121]

Gist

IN SUM

  1. The path of the spinal cord leads into Great Bliss, we are informed.
  2. By seeing the third eye one may develop certain yoga powers. Women are not barred from it.
  3. Calming down often tends to counteract much gross stupidity.

IN NUCE The path is seeing the third eye and calming down. Bulwarking may be needed too.

Lahiri Mahasaya Baba sayings and extracts
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Lahiri Mahasaya Baba sayings, LITERATURE  

Dm: Jagadiswarananda sw tr: Devi Mahatmyam. Ramakrishna. Madras, 1953.

Iv: Satyeswarananda, sw., tr: Inner Victory: With Lahiri Mahasay's Commentaries. The Sanskrit Classics. San Diego, 1987.

Ma: Pargiter, F. tr: Markandeya Purana. Indiological Book House. Delhi, 1969.

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