The Magnificence of Inner Sound Meditation (Nada Dhyan), By Swami Achyutanand Ji Maharaj
Sant Mat Mysticism Blog:
Below are translated excerpts from the book, "Vindu – Nada Dhyan", authored by the octogenarian Sant Revd. Swami Achyutanand Ji Maharaj, one of the eldest living disciples of Maharshi Mehi Paramhans, as well as an eminent scholar in the tradition of Santmat founded by Sant Tulsi Sahab of Hathras. Swami Ji has had the rare fortune of very prolonged close serving association of more than three decades with Maharshi Mehi who appointed him as the founder editor of the spiritual monthly "Shanti Sandesh" (Message of Peace) published by Maharshi Mehi Ashram, Kuppaghat, Bhagalpur, Bihar, India. Swami Achyutanand Ji even at this ripe age has dedicated his life to propagating the ideals of Santmat by widely travelling across the length and breadth of India, his mother country. He has a number of books to his credit like, "Vindu – Nada Dhyan", "Santmate Ki Baten", "Navadha Bhakti", "Bandaun Guru Pad Kanj", "Maharshi Mehi Ke Ashirwachan Aur Upadesh", "Sukti Sudha Sagar", etc. He also is the current editor of the quarterly "Adhyatma Prakash" (Light of Spirituality) published by Maharshi Santsewi Dhyan Yogashram, Agarpara, Kolkata, India.
- Translated into English by Pravesh K. Singh
The Magnificence of Nada Dhyan (Inner Sound Meditation)
It is essential to practice bindu-dhyan, Drishti Yoga -- the Yoga of Inner Light -- before doing Nada–Dhyan [Yoga of Inner Sound], because with continued practice of Drishti Yoga (meditation on the Inner Light), the ability to practice Nada meditation is truly gained. The mind gets completely controlled with Nada–dhyan. The mind does not merely become controlled, it actually dies down. Sant Charandas Ji has depicted it exquisitely:
"jabase anahad ghora sunI |
indri thakit galit mana hUA, AshA sakal bhunI||"
[Since when I perceived the Divine Sound echoing within, all the organs became completely quiet, the mind got dissolved, and all longings ceased. ]
How did this happen? Charandas Ji further elaborates,
"ghUmat naina shithil bhayi kAyA, amal jo surat sanI |
roma roma Ananda upaj kari, Alas sahaj bhanI ||"
This means, on turning the Drishti (vision or gaze) inward (i.e. practicing Drishti Yoga), and on perceiving the Inner Sound, the body turned motionless, every pore of it got soaked in Divine bliss, and all lethargy, quite naturally, fled away.
It is why Kabir Sahab taught,
"shabda khoji mana basa karai, sahaja yoga hai yehi |
satta shabda nija sAra hai, yaha to jhUThI dehi ||"
[Subjugate the mind by finding the Inner Sound; this is the sahaja (natural) yoga.] |
The True or Unstruck Word is our essence; this body of ours is otherwise illusory or impermanent. ||]
Sant Charandas Ji further says,
"karate anahad dhyAn ke, Brahma rUpa hoi jAya |
Charandas yon kahata hai, bAdhA saba miT jAya ||"
[By meditating on the Word, the practitioner becomes the same as God or Brahman. |
Practicing this way, says Charandas Ji, all obstacles are removed. ||]
In the Nadabind Upanishad it has been said about the Inner Sound (Nada) meditation that,
"sarvachintAm samutsrijya sarvachesTA vivarjitah |
nAdamevAnusandAdhyAnnAde chittam vilIyate ||
nAdAsaktam sadA chittam vishayam na hi kAnkshati |"
That is, sidelining all worries and all efforts, one should mainly focus on the exploration of Nada; by doing thus the mind gets dissolved in the Nada, and the mind thus absorbed in the Nada does not crave anymore for the sensory objects.
Nada itself is Brahma. We should absorb our mind in this very Nada. Shrimadadya Shankaracharya has stated in Yogataravali:
"sadA shivoktAni sapAdalakshyalayAvadhAnAni vasanti loke |
nAdAnusandhAna samAdhimekam manyAmahe mAnyatamam layAnAm ||
nAdAnusandhan namostu tubhyam tvam manmahe tattvapadam layAnAm |
bhavatprAsAdAt pavanena sAkam vilIyate VishNupade mano me ||
sarva chintAm parityajya sAvadhAnena chetasA |
nAda evAnusandheyo yoga sAmrAjyamichchhatA ||"
[Lord Shiva, the propounder of the Yoga Shastra, has listed 1,25,000 ways of dissolution of mind. |
Amongst these Nadanu-sandhana (meditation on the Inner Sound) is the best, as well as the easiest way. ||
I bow to thee, O Nada! You lift me on to the Highest Throne. |
It is only with your grace that my prANa-vAyu (vital life-air) and my mind get dissolved in the Highest echelon of the Supreme Lord. ||
(Therefore,) renouncing all sorts of worries and with an alert and focussed mind...|
Those who yearn for the union with the Highest should meditate on the Divine Sound within. ||]
Balayogi Shri Bala Swami Ji Maharaj has beautifully expressed his views regarding Nada-dhyana, "This is such a means that enables us easily experience that supreme bliss that is our very own. Nada has a unique power. All of us know of the joy we experience while listening to melodious music in the outer world, but so unique and unparalleled is the bliss of this Inner Melody that the mind gets completely dissolved, and all its cravings get annihilated."
`indriyANAm manonAtho manonAthastu mArutah |
mArutasya layo nAthah sa layo nAdamAshritah ||'
[Mind is the master of all the organs; prANavAyu (vital life-air) is the lord of the mind. |
`Manolaya' (dissolution or absorption of mind) is the boss of prANavAyu, and this dissolution is accomplished with the help of Nada, the Inner Sound.||]
"Perseverance in the practice of Nadanu-sandhana leads to the dissolution of the mind. By sitting in a proper posture and consistently practicing looking within, with the eyes closed, one gets to listen to the Nada." (Kalyana Yoganka, p 325)
Sant Kabir sings prolific praise of Shabda-sadhana or Nada-dhyana:
"Kabir shabda sarIr mein, bin gun bAjai tAnt |
bAhar bhItar rami rahA, tAtein chhoTI bhrAnti ||
shabda shabda bahu antarA, shabda sAra kA sIr |
shabda shabda kA khojanA, shabda shabda kA pIr ||
shabda shabda bahu antarA, sAra shabda chita deya |
jA shabdai sAhaba milai, soi shabda gahi leya ||
shabda shabda sab koi kahai, wo to shabda videha |
jibhyA par Awai nahIn, nirakhi parakhi kari deh ||
shabda hamArA Adi ka, pala pala kariye yAda |
anta falaigI mAnhi kI, bAhar kI sab bAda ||
yahi baDAi shabda kI, jaise chumbak bhAya |
binA shabda nahin ubarai, ketA karai upAya ||
shabda binA sruti AndharI, kaho kahAn ko jAya |
dvAra na pAvai shabda kA, firi firi bhaTakA khAya ||"
[The Word, says Kabir Sahab, keeps ringing in the body |
It is pervading within and without; this alone can destroy all confusion. ||
There are many Words, each different from the other, the Quintessential Word is the crown of all. |
One Word is explored through the other, as one Word is the Guru of (or leads to) the other. ||
Words are much different from each other; focus yourself on to the Quintessential Word. |
Grasp that Word that would take you to the Supreme Lord. ||
Though everyone talks of the Word, that Word is without form. |
The tongue can't pronounce it; it has to be perceived within the body. ||
The Word has been there before we came into being, remember (meditate on it) constantly.|
This Word alone that is found within will prevail in the end, rest all being of least significance. ||
The beauty of the Word is that it acts like a magnet. |
One can't be liberated without the Word however hard one might try. ||
The soul is blind without the Word, knowing not which way to go. |
Not finding the Word, the soul keeps wandering again and again. ||]