Lesson 3 – Yantra – Chariot of The Mind

Yantra, author Marina Sukhanova

Yantra, author Marina Sukhanova

Let’s talk about the Yantra as a chariot of the mind, moving mentally to the battlefield of Kurukshetra, where archer Arjuna appears with the charioteer Krishna.
Krishna is a paragon of the ideal Teacher and a close relative the both warring parties, gathered to fight each other for destruction.  On the one hand – the Pandavas, on the other hand – the Kauravas.

The Kauravas who are under the leadership of  Duryodhana – materialists , and they  try to increase their prosperity  by any means and embody the tendency of destruction by themselves. Pandavas, unlike the Kauravas, are adherents of morality and integrity.

The duration of the Kauravas  government,which was obtained by fraud and deceit  ends and they must now cede the rule to the lands of the Pandavas, but instead of it, the Kauravas try to establish themselves as rulers who do not wish to transfer power by peaceful means.  Then, the Pandavas come to restore order in the kingdom.

So, there must be a battle between them.  Both sides turn to Krishna with a request to be on their side during their battle. Krishna  is the king with his principality and army. He responds to the parties asking for help that  since he is a relative for both sides  he will not fight against someone, but, in spite of this, he will not refuse to help them.
Krishna said, “I will do this. Let one of the parties take advantage of my army, and on the other hand I will be an adviser and a charioteer”. Duryodhana takes the army of Krishna gladly and thereby increases the strength of his troops, and Arjuna accepts Krishna ‘s help as a charioteer with great pleasure.

What does it mean? The description of the battle has a symbolic meaning. On the example of this story, we see how within a person a division into virtue and obscuration takes place, as well as the choice made by a person.

We see the field of Kurukushetra in Arjuna’s own mind, where the good qualities of the mind will perform as  the Pandavas, and the Kauravas will have darkened passions.

Both of them appeal to the Lord with their aspirations, as a result of which Arjuna and Duryodhana appeared God Krishna (that is WISDOM came to be recognized only by virtuous thoughts, and the darkened can see in Him only the satisfaction of worldly desires. Worldly desires, also called mundane dharmas, are the external energy of Krishna, that is,  by that which hides His Presence. This is the army of Krishna desired for Duryodhana).

God gives everyone what he wants. God gives Wisdom  to Arjuna (communicating with him as counselor and charioteer), and God gives army to Duryodhane, consisting of worldly dharmas.
But how can the darkening conquer virtue, if on the side of virtue is Wisdom, and on the side of darkening  are the inflated soap bubbles of desires and the fear of losing its superiority?

And now, Arjuna departs with Krishna on the field of Kurukushetra and inspects the troops. Looking around the ranks of his relatives from both sides, who gathered to perish one another, he is experiencing deep despair. Both sides, ready for battle dear for Arjuna since they are all close relatives to him.

The noble qualities of the mind provide calm  and Sabbath  in its existence, and passions and desires, familiar to him since childhood, still harbor hopes of fulfillment.

Likewise, many people say to themselves and others: “What is wrong if I direct my efforts to realize my childhood dream or will I finally try the bliss from the fruit of lust? What’s wrong with the fact that I will direct my efforts to surprise and arouse jealousy among my neighbors? “

It is especially difficult to give up all this at a time when funds that are free of urgent needs appear.
In this place “Kurukshetra” grows with virtuous and vicious thoughts-relatives. Arjuna is  in confusion. He does not want bloodshed and he does not want to fight. And Krishna says to him: “If you don’t fight, then the enemies will destroy those who are on your side …” – And on the side of Arjuna, the Good qualities of his mind!  And, then, Arjuna begins to understand that it is necessary to make a choice.  And 
this choice is the BATTLE!
This story shows Arjuna’s false approach to the NODOIN’ (non-action) in this situation.  The yogi learns to distinguish  where, what method of practice is in its place.  In this case, NODOIN’ (non-action) , as a NONBATTLE, does not fit Arjuna. And if he does not fight his desires, the  shame and disgrace awaits him.
The very metaphor “Chariot of Mind” indicates that yantra, being a rigid structure for the eye, moves the mind into the supernatural sphere of vision.  The mind in yantra is like Arjuna in a chariot, where Lord Krishna is the charioteer, helping him to make the right choice.

The Yantra opens before our eyes the battlefield of our darkened passions and virtuous thoughts.  A   huge black field of passions is the   army of the Kauravas.

The smaller size, the weak and delicate flower of the eight petalled lotus is the army of the Good qualities of the mind (Pandava).

They convert 8 worldly dharmas into bodhichitas of white petals.  Wisdom rules in the center, surrounded by enemies.  She blows a trumpet into her white shell and turns the wheel of learning.  The sound of the shell emits the sound of the Emptiness (the six-pointed star), which absorbs all the obscuration and fills the outer and inner universe.

Marina Sukhanova and Vladimir Pyatsky
Translation: Helga Von Krauzinsh