The Link in the Chain of Wisdom
“Tantra is a wisdom tradition
that entails strict codes
that are handed on
in unbroken lines
from teacher to student.
The teacher is the link
in the chain of Tantra.”
The original tantric practices are themselves the Teacher that lead us to the Darshan (vision) of the Guru Tatva (element). In the Tantric tradition, the teacher is no job but a way of life. Those who go forward and become teachers must undergo extreme initiation rituals. Such rituals are to teach – or rather prepare them for a life that belongs more to their students than it does to themselves.
The axiom in Tantra
is that our lives are not given for ourselves
but for others.
The sacrifices of a true Guru go unseen and know no bounds. Sacrifices motivated by the weight of Love.
So, who is the real teacher? The real teacher is the one who is able to look beyond the characters that we think we are and see who we really are – beneath the library and archives of personal history that lay upon our souls.
The Love of the teacher is not sentimental, but is a visionary Love of who one really is. The Guru’s role is not to satisfy and please the student by giving what the student wants. Often the Guru must show the student that which they do not want to see. For those blind spots are where the true self lays buried like a precious underground treasure. A strict Love indeed, but a love that forgives time and again and holds a profound and enduring patience.
The teacher can seem like they do not care. Maybe they do not care for the skin and surface of our being, but rather for the one within and behind the costumes and uniforms of character.
The Heavy One
Guru means “the heavy one”. Guru is an adjective that means Heavy. It is popularly and modernly translated as “the one who brings one from darkness to light”. This is a perhaps a Christian inflection upon the principle of Guru. In-fact, this could be said to be a reversal of meaning.
is linked to Shuni
who is the planet Saturn.
The stories of Shuni tell how he is the child of Surya (sun) and, with his dark, weighty underworld gaze, even caused Surya to blacken like a dark crispy shadow of his former self.
Saturn is just like the Guru who has the ability to take away all visible and known light within us and take us into the parts of ourselves that have previously not been seen. Tantric methods themselves act like the Guru who can eclipse the solar vision and make us aware of the spirits of the unconscious world that colour our visible lives. By seeing and addressing these forces, they are brought to the altar of the soul for healing, and this is exactly what the weight of the Guru stands for.
Just like Shuni, the Guru indeed brings us to our deep inner weight. He is like the heavy dark planet indeed and brings us to our deep inner weight. Like many words of the ancient Tantric vocabulary, Guru has been transposed across cultures and taken on a somewhat negative connotation in modern times, of the imposter who uses his power to exploit others. This is indeed a pity and an anomaly of a sacred word and principle.
There may be those who set themselves up in such ways as they break into the western market. Tantra has never attempted to break into any market, though a click and scroll through contemporary pages might show us differently.Again another word that has become taken out of context and perhaps been used, exploited and cheapened dishonorably.
Codes of Tantra
The codes of Tantra revolve not around the teacher as a personality or a celebrity but as an imparter of techniques. To be able hold some of those techniques indeed takes great power and weight. Tantra understands that the heavy quality and presence of the Guru is of utmost importance.
The heavy Guru has a heavy vision that must stand for solidity and look only to the real weight of the student. The guru is strict about practices and the regulations of living if one is to come to their true deep weight. Flimsy light weighted abstractions, and clever escapisms, pale in the presence of a Guru.
Laghoo is a Sanskrit word for ‘aspirant’, which means ‘lightness’. The Guru in his vision might not tolerate or overlook the light, flimsy and superficial aspects of our character. The Guru puts heavy focus upon the deeper self that is locked in the very weight of our beings.
If we are used to living in empty vanities and airy realities, the mere presence of the guru can at times be painfully and heavily oppressive. If we are to follow the teachings of Tantra with sincere focus, it does not allow for indulgence in superficiality and escapism. The Tantric way is the way of the weight of reality and truth.
Sometimes seeing and swallowing the Truth is bitter.
But sweetening the bitter taste is not an entertainment
that Tantra in its original sense will offer us.
The strict insight of the Guru is timed with reality. The gaze might appear as unbending, but their eyes firmly focus upon the optimal power of each and every moment. This is a vision that takes great stamina and integrity of being. This is the weight that awakens the weight of the Guru Tatva.
The weight of the Guru is within each person. The practice of Tantra has a strict form that becomes the Guru. If one is to engage in ritual successfully, there is to be no sidestepping – light wishful thinking and good intentions do not drive the car. One must put the foot on the pedal of Tantra. It is a pedal that takes some weight to press.
That is the weight of the Guru.
The true inner and outer teacher wants us to drive the car of life power and not sit back lightly and hypothesize about life. Whether the teacher is our own inner rooted power, or an actual outer guide, the essence of the Tantric teacher is weight.
What blocks the Teacher from coming close? The teacher can not reach us if we are in the habit of defense. When we suffer the habit of defense then we close off the reception of Wisdom. Defense fades as trust grows, by learning to uncover and trust our innate power we open ourselves in all directions.
Tantra is not really the learning of new wisdom, but rather the unfoldment of our innate wisdom, by a process of practical study we come to see the coverings upon our innate wisdom – and can then apply ourselves to a process of excavating the treasure of inner wisdom.
As we uncover wisdom’s face, we may find the hidden games and strategies we play to banish wisdom from our hearts and lives. Wisdom requires the death of many things. We might have got used to make others less than ourselves in our hearts and minds.
We might have come to believe
that the unseen and unknown has no measurable value.
We might have taken the stance
to critically stand above things
as a way to navigate through life.
In the face of uncovering wisdom, such things may come to our attention. Such attitudes isolate us from learning anything now and fade as the mask is taken away from wisdoms face. These attitudes are based on traumas that have their roots in self protection. The dropping away of self protection does not mean that one abandons their dignity. The Teacher wants us to keep our dignity while losing our self defense against wisdom – this is the state of empowerment where subservience and self abnegation does not enter.
The Teacher of Wisdom series
All those who venture to find the inner Guru
and to understand the role of the Teacher
in Tantric wisdom
are welcomed to the Teacher of Wisdom series of rituals.
The days upon which we shall gather for these rituals relate to Tantric festivals that celebrate the quality of the Teacher of Wisdom. Beginning on the ritual day of Mauni Amvasya, we will honour the secret and unspoken wisdom of silence. A Mauni is a silent wise teacher, and this dark moon day is commemorative of exactly that.
We will move onto Maha Shivaratri in the next ritual and honour Shiva. Shiva is the first of the Yogis and he is connected with ritualistically on the night of Shivratri, which translates as the great night of Shiva.
The next ritual will be upon Guru Purnima, this is the full moon of honouring the elders and the principle of the Guru.
The final ritual in the Teacher of Wisdom Series will be upon the commemoration day of Lord Dattetreya, he is the legendary Tantric of the left hand way of the heart.
In this series of Wisdom rituals, we will travel through many Tantric practices along with the stories and myths of these ritual nights. We will connect to the principle of the inner wise one that takes us deep into the Inner Teacher of Wisdom in the cave of our Heart.
In this series we will explore tantric methods of wisdom that can eclipse the outer solar vision, and make us aware of the spirits of the unconscious world that colour and dream our visible lives into being. Tantra is the Teacher.