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Author Topic: Astral Projection called distraction in Yoga Sutras over 2000 years ago?  (Read 1744 times)
DancingBear
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« on: October 16, 2018, 05:38:56 »

Link to the specific text and an explanation of the translation:
http://www.swamij.com/yoga-sutras-35052.htm#3.52

Interpretation of the Sanskrit:
3.52 When invited by the celestial beings, no cause should be allowed to arise in the mind that would allow either acceptance of the offer, or the smile of pride from receiving the invitation, because to allow such thoughts to arise again might create the possibility of repeating undesirable thoughts and actions.

Explanation of the translation:
Declining celestial invitations: As discrimination becomes increasingly finer, the levels of the subtle realm are experienced, including encounters with the disembodied or celestial beings. They might invite the sadhaka (practitioner) with the experiences of the subtle realm. These invitations, experiences, or powers are distractions, which block (1.4) the realization of the true Self (1.3), which is beyond all experiences. Therefore, the invitations are declined in a spirit of non-attachment (1.15), as are the other subtle experiences (3.38).


I was listening to talks by Sadhguru, and after some time based on my own experiences, I came to the conclusion he is almost certainly enlightened, or a self-realized human being. Because pretty much everything he was saying was resonating with me, I decided to research  his methods of enlightenment. This led me to the Yoga Sutras. Previously I had merely been using my own adaptation of Vipassana for self-inquiry. I reached different states of awareness that I simply didn't have the vocabulary for, but when I started reading explanations of the Yoga Sutras it was like they laid out precisely what it was I have experienced in a way I've never seen.

I believe that at one point some months ago, after a few days of intensive meditation, I came to what they refer to in Yoga as Bindu. The Absolute, end of experience, the point which the present moment springs from. I came to a state of awareness where it felt like everything that was left of my individuality was about to disappear into the abyss, like I was falling into a void with no sensation left to observe, leaving only pure awareness. But I had a knee jerk reaction of fear, almost like a fear of death, which snapped me out of it before I was able to experience it.

I say this because this experience seemed to be well passed the state one achieves with AP. This combined with all of my other experiences echoing what I've read in the Sutras, it seems it would be absurd to dismiss the passage above. I'm wondering what you all think, is AP merely a distraction from deeper states of awareness, keeping us from knowing our true selves? It seems some of the members here have already come to the conclusion that AP should take a backseat or not be actively pursued, I wonder if there is any correlation.
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baro-san
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« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2018, 14:34:35 »

... I'm wondering what you all think, is AP merely a distraction from deeper states of awareness, keeping us from knowing our true selves? It seems some of the members here have already come to the conclusion that AP should take a backseat or not be actively pursued, I wonder if there is any correlation.

If you do AP for entertainment, I see no reason not to entertain yourself.

If you do AP seeking knowledge, I see no reason not to seek knowledge. I find this reason more stimulating than entertainment, but not everybody is at that stage in life when they are knowledge seeking.

When you combine AP with belief systems (e.g. religious beliefs) it is likely that your altered states of consciousness experiences (AP, meditation, ...) will be influenced by your beliefs.

Bottom line, I see no reason not to AP, and only reasons to AP. But, I'd suggest to check your beliefs and emotions at the door.
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« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2018, 14:34:35 »

logoVisit the website of Astral Pulse creator Adrian Cooper.

Home of the best selling book Our Ultimate Reality.

Astral Projection, Metaphysics and many other subjects.

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DancingBear
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« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2018, 22:00:49 »

As far as I can tell the Yoga Sutras aren't religious in nature at all. They're an instruction manual for seeing reality more clearly by removing what you are not, which seems to be the antithesis of a belief system. Just like Sadhguru isn't religious, the Yoga Sutras shouldn't be confused with a religious Hindu text such as the Bhagavad Gita. It's simply a collection of ancient Yogic theory and practice that was compiled by Patańjali. A science for understanding self.

I see no reason not to AP, and only reasons to AP.

See this is really the crux of the issue I bring up. No reason would imply that pursuing OBE, doesn't hinder self-realization in any way. And the very Sutras that make up the foundation of the science of Yoga says that it does. I don't know about anyone else with experience with OBE's, but my drive for pursuing those states of consciousness is to understand just what the heck is actually going on with this life. What am I, what is my place in this world? Those questions are answered by self-realization.

So it seems a simple process from there to deduce that if you want to know yourself to the very core of your being, and the clearest most thoroughly practiced path to experience your true nature also clearly states that OBE is a hindrance to self-realization, then there is in fact a clear reason to not pursue OBE.

I've personally experienced degrees of awareness I would consider deeper than OBE, by keeping myself from entering OBE through posture techniques, which tells me it's more of a milestone than destination to experiencing self-realization.

There's nothing morally wrong with seeking entertainment/distractions, or seeking understanding, but if you are trying to shed distractions or intellectual understanding for direct experience of what is, then you just have to recognize what isn't you and let it go. At least, this has been my experience.

Hope this clarification helps convey my question more clearly.
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Stillwater
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« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2018, 22:51:38 »

There is this concept found throughout the Upanishads, yogic teachings, and Buddhist writings, called the "Siddhis", which is a word that translates to something "Perfections" / "Attainements". The idea is that there are extraordinary abilities which a person may stumble upon on the path to greater knowledge, and these should genrally be ignored completely, because they will be a source of distraction. In some circles, Projection is considered a Siddhi which should be ignored.

Should you ignore them?

To put things into context, these writings take certain core assumptions into play, such as what the goals of "spiritual" practices should be. If you don't share the same goals, you don't come to the same assumptions.

I'd say apply the same reasoning to this area that fits most: be moderate about it. Maybe take some time to explore it, but also don't be consumed by it. Take it as part of your life to be experienced in balance with other things.
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baro-san
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« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2018, 03:20:19 »

I wrote "belief systems", and gave "religious beliefs" as an example. I think Yoga, any school of Yoga, is a belief system. Somebody believes that AP is a distraction. Somebody believe self-realization is the goal of this life.

My point is that one should try to find out the goal of their life by himself, with no (as much as possible) bias from any external belief system.

To me, "a science for understanding self" is a collection of beliefs, and because it tells you what to believe (e.g. AP is a distraction), impedes one's quest for knowledge (what is life, why am I here, why are we here,  why is it happening to me, what should I do, etc.).

So, when a dilemma like "should or shouldn't I AP" arises, I don't go to a book, or guru, for an answer, but I turn toward inside to find out the answer. To get that, I have to leave behind all beliefs, be emotionless, and have an expectation I'll get the right answer. My question needs to be clear and concise, and I have to be careful not to distort the answer with my interpretation and rationalization.

AP isn't a necessary tool in one's quest for knowledge (as exemplified above), but can be one of the possible altered states of consciousness one can use.

I don't expect to win a popularity vote on which is the best tool, and path, but I use, and recommend self-hypnosis, even over meditation.

In my view the supreme question isn't "who am I", but "what should I do".
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« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2018, 03:20:19 »



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DancingBear
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« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2018, 05:34:17 »

I'd say apply the same reasoning to this area that fits most: be moderate about it. Maybe take some time to explore it, but also don't be consumed by it. Take it as part of your life to be experienced in balance with other things.

This is what I am leaning towards. As I sometimes naturally have OBE, I feel like to deny/repress something that naturally happens is akin to trying to stop breathing. Actively seeking it out is what I think I will stop doing, as I don't need or want to fill my life with distractions from self-realization at this time. That's the direction life seems to be leading me towards.
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Stillwater
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« Reply #6 on: October 17, 2018, 06:10:07 »

Quote
In my view the supreme question isn't "who am I", but "what should I do".

That's kind of the root of existentialism throughout literature, right? So we exist... and there doesn't seem to be cosmic evil or cosmic good... what do we do in such a case? Our goals must be our own, and how do we form them?

Quote
My point is that one should try to find out the goal of their life by himself, with no (as much as possible) bias from any external belief system.

To me, "a science for understanding self" is a collection of beliefs, and because it tells you what to believe (e.g. AP is a distraction), impedes one's quest for knowledge (what is life, why am I here, why are we here,  why is it happening to me, what should I do, etc.).

So, when a dilemma like "should or shouldn't I AP" arises, I don't go to a book, or guru, for an answer, but I turn toward inside to find out the answer.

Very well said. I think we can learn from the old texts, but we shouldn't just take on their goals as our own, and default to letting them do our thinking for us.
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DancingBear
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« Reply #7 on: October 17, 2018, 06:21:18 »

I wrote "belief systems", and gave "religious beliefs" as an example. I think Yoga, any school of Yoga, is a belief system. Somebody believes that AP is a distraction. Somebody believe self-realization is the goal of this life.

My point is that one should try to find out the goal of their life by himself, with no (as much as possible) bias from any external belief system.

To me, "a science for understanding self" is a collection of beliefs, and because it tells you what to believe (e.g. AP is a distraction), impedes one's quest for knowledge (what is life, why am I here, why are we here,  why is it happening to me, what should I do, etc.).

So, when a dilemma like "should or shouldn't I AP" arises, I don't go to a book, or guru, for an answer, but I turn toward inside to find out the answer. To get that, I have to leave behind all beliefs, be emotionless, and have an expectation I'll get the right answer. My question needs to be clear and concise, and I have to be careful not to distort the answer with my interpretation and rationalization.

AP isn't a necessary tool in one's quest for knowledge (as exemplified above), but can be one of the possible altered states of consciousness one can use.

I don't expect to win a popularity vote on which is the best tool, and path, but I use, and recommend self-hypnosis, even over meditation.

In my view the supreme question isn't "who am I", but "what should I do".

I understand what you mean now. I'm not sure I agree, but I respect your different point of view.

The path of self-realization seems to be the the antithesis of a belief system the same way it is for religious beliefs, after all you are simply shedding what isn't you to have a clearer perception. I get what you mean by 'believing' AP is a distraction from self-realization, but this is really where I see the gray area starting, for me anyway. I hadn't read the Yogic Sutras until recently, and yet through self-inquiry I recognized many of the same insights through my experience. So then to stumble upon some instructions for the path I'm already walking, that match my own experience as far as I've gotten naturally through their instructions, I don't think you could call that a belief system. Certainly not a belief system of my own.

It's not a belief that taking those actions would bring me to a certain state, it's merely an observation of reality, my reality. Where the gray area comes in, is that recognizing their instructions have matched my own personal experience, is it ok to then extrapolate that the passage about AP also being true. I think to realize that it is likely true given everything being true that I've experienced that the Sutras also mention is a fairly safe assumption to make until I recognize otherwise. This wouldn't be a belief that it's absolutely true, but something to be aware of while doing further self inquiry. After all, it doesn't seem unreasonable to have opened 100 boxes to find a toy to then assume to chances of the 101st box to also have a toy are considerable. To think it's absolutely going to happen is a fallacy, but that's not the case here.

To simply deny all advice of others who have already walked the path you have seems a little extreme though. Sure see the truth of your own experience, but to go that far would be like deciding you're going to travel to another planet, but you're not even going to read a book on physics to start getting a grasp of the rudimentary knowledge you would need to eventually reach a point where you could build a rocket. If you keep following that way of denying help of others, you might of not even learned how to read.

It would certainly be doable to have a goal of self-realization while not using any help of others, but how many lifetimes would it unnecessarily take?

I don't know if there is a supreme question, or one and only way to live your life, one's life is to do what they want with it. My current goal is to know myself truly, to then have a solid foundation for acting out my heart's desire using the laser focus of my entire being. That's why I find it relevant to consider setting actively seeking OBE aside given what I've found.

What is it you use self-hypnosis for?
« Last Edit: October 17, 2018, 06:43:31 by DancingBear » Logged
baro-san
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« Reply #8 on: October 17, 2018, 09:38:43 »

I understand what you mean now. I'm not sure I agree, but I respect your different point of view.

The path of self-realization seems to be the the antithesis of a belief system the same way it is for religious beliefs, after all you are simply shedding what isn't you to have a clearer perception. I get what you mean by 'believing' AP is a distraction from self-realization, but this is really where I see the gray area starting, for me anyway. I hadn't read the Yogic Sutras until recently, and yet through self-inquiry I recognized many of the same insights through my experience. So then to stumble upon some instructions for the path I'm already walking, that match my own experience as far as I've gotten naturally through their instructions, I don't think you could call that a belief system. Certainly not a belief system of my own.

It's not a belief that taking those actions would bring me to a certain state, it's merely an observation of reality, my reality. Where the gray area comes in, is that recognizing their instructions have matched my own personal experience, is it ok to then extrapolate that the passage about AP also being true. I think to realize that it is likely true given everything being true that I've experienced that the Sutras also mention is a fairly safe assumption to make until I recognize otherwise. This wouldn't be a belief that it's absolutely true, but something to be aware of while doing further self inquiry. After all, it doesn't seem unreasonable to have opened 100 boxes to find a toy to then assume to chances of the 101st box to also have a toy are considerable. To think it's absolutely going to happen is a fallacy, but that's not the case here.

To simply deny all advice of others who have already walked the path you have seems a little extreme though. Sure see the truth of your own experience, but to go that far would be like deciding you're going to travel to another planet, but you're not even going to read a book on physics to start getting a grasp of the rudimentary knowledge you would need to eventually reach a point where you could build a rocket. If you keep following that way of denying help of others, you might of not even learned how to read.

It would certainly be doable to have a goal of self-realization while not using any help of others, but how many lifetimes would it unnecessarily take?

I don't know if there is a supreme question, or one and only way to live your life, one's life is to do what they want with it. My current goal is to know myself truly, to then have a solid foundation for acting out my heart's desire using the laser focus of my entire being. That's why I find it relevant to consider setting actively seeking OBE aside given what I've found.

What is it you use self-hypnosis for?

I use self-hypnosis to get into an alternate state of consciousness (trance). I prefer self- to hetero-hypnosis because this assures my experience isn't in any way affected by another's conscious or subconscious. It is also more customizable to each goal of the moment.

You can look up meditation vs hypnosis. Both are ways of getting into altered states of consciousness. It can be said the same thing about astral projection / lucid dreaming.

Surely, I rely on, and consult others' knowledge and opinion ...  smiley but I filter them. I read a lot, but I filter that too. I know that from the thousand different opinions, about a subject, one might be right, or none might be right, and at their face value I can't say which is which. It's like with weight loss. I know how to do it (calories), I did it (-130 lb), kept it for many years (15), all who know me have seen it, still, I have friends and relatives who are overweight, and who keep complaining to me about it.
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