Sadhana of the Clear Lights (Sadhana of Green Tara)
This sadhana is a practice focusing on the short central channel: a channel with its lowest point in the base of the spine and its highest point just below the heart (this point supports the physical heart).
In this practice we work with four points of Clear Lights by both visualizing and praying to these Lights.
These are Blue, Green, Yellow and Red lights.
All the points, except the point of Red light, are visualized along a straight line in the center of our body (in the central channel); the point of Red light is slightly displaced backward.
The short central channel, and the blue, green and yellow lights, is located along the lower portion of the aorta. The aorta divides into two arteries at the point of yellow light. The point of red light supports it. The point of blue light is located on descending part of aorta.
It is vital to care for the lower part of aorta, as it is where the heat of the heart is preserved and stored. In fact it is the lower part of the aorta that has the largest capacity to hold blood among all the blood vessels in the body.
Lack of heat in the lower part of the body often pushes people into self-destructive activities like gluttony, overweight and alcoholism. All these activities have one common purpose which is to strengthen blood circulation in the lower part of the body.
It is so important to learn how to bring heat to the lower part of the body (lower part of aorta) in a skillful way without creating dependency on harmful habits and behaviors.
The four points of light are located in the following locations:
- the point of Red light is located at the base of the spine, between anus and coccyx;
- the point of Yellow light is located four fingers below the navel;
- the point of Green light is located in the area of the solar plexus, half-way between the navel and the place where the ribs are joined;
- the point of Blue light is located between the nipples (in men), or two fingers up from the place where ribs are joined (on the sternum), on the spot where a second finger is placed in women.
Usually, when the lights are not active enough, the muscular sensation in the area of upper two points’ projections feels painful and tensed when they are gently massaged or pressed. When the lower points are massaged or touched the sensations are languid but pleasant, bringing a feeling of relief. This usually indicates stagnation.
The Clear Lights’ sadhana is connected with Green Tara and with the Immeasurable feeling of Joy. Green Tara’s corresponding organ is the small intestine.
There are four types of joy which correspond to the four points of light. They are:
- joy connected with excitement
- joy colored with vitality
- joy reflected in meditation experiences
- joy of direct recognition
When we experience one of these types of joy we “absorb” it into corresponding point of light. After it is absorbed and the point is “filled” with that particular kind of joy we visualize how rays of clear light are emitted from this point. Here we are advised to use prayers to make our visualization potent.
Prayers to Lights are:
- O BLISS, CLEAR RED LIGHT, PROTECT ME FROM LUST.
- O WISDOM, CLEAR YELLOW LIGHT, PURIFY ME FROM FEAR.
- O LIFE, CLEAR GREEN LIGHT, HEAL ME FROM ENVY.
- O LORD, CLEAR BLUE LIGHT, AWAKEN ME FROM PRIDE.
There is a story of Asanga who was a founder of Yogachara (Consciousness-only) school. We may see that the story is connected with four types of joy.
The Story of Asanga
Asanga made a decision to attain enlightenment meditating on Buddha Maytreya. For three years he meditated in a cave, but no meditation experiences appeared. So he came to the conclusion that he has no abilities and decided to go back to his monastery. When Asanga was on his way to the monastery he had a vision: a man was rubbing an iron bar with sand in order to make a needle. “Patience is the key to everything”, he realized and went back to his cave.
Asanga meditated for another three years but nothing happened and he again thought he is unsuitable for any kind of practice.
So he decided to go back to his monastery just to live among other monks.
While on his way he saw on the mountain slope one very finely polished stoned. Asanga wondered what made it so smooth and as he saw a dove alighting on the stone he discovered that it was the dove’s feathers which polished the stone. “If this dove was able to make the stone so smooth then my mind will be able to accomplish its “polishing” too.”
And Asanga was back to his cave and meditated for another three years, but nothing happened. So he decided to leave his retreat and go to the world to lead life of a lay man. When he was on his way he saw a hole in a rock made by dripping water. “If water in it softness is able to pierce hardness of the rock then my practice be able to pierce my ignorance too.”
So Asanga went back to his cave and meditated for another three years. And nothing happened. Asanga decided to leave the cave, but neither go back to the monastery nor out to the world, but to live a life of a wanderer. When he was on his way he saw on the road a dying dog with a body infested with maggots. Filled with compassion Asanga started to carefully take out maggots from the dog’s body. In that moment the dog turned into Buddha Maytreya.
“Where have you been for all these years?!”,- Asanga exclaimed.
“Though you could not see me I was always with you”, – Maytreya explained.
“And what about meditation experiences? Why did they not appear?” – “The nature of mind was always with you as well!”
Asanga put Maytreaya on his shoulders, and from that moment on Maytreya was always with him.
Translation: Ilona Erkin & Dorey Glenn