THE TOOLS OF THE STRIDER BETWEEN THE WORLDS (OF THE SHAMAN AND MAGICIAN)
Variable gadgets and tools that helped in subtle travels has been known since the very ancient times. They can be divided into several classes according to their function. For the first these are navigation tools, different maps, 'start points' (specially equipped places from which the travel begins), navigation mandalas, special amulets and many other things.
4.1. Psychoenergetic gadgets
For the second these are variable gadgets and tools necessary for directing streams of vital energy. They are needed for preliminary purification of the place of the planned travel, its protection and for the forming of hyperspacial tunnel, opening diaphragm. Besides psychoenergetic gadgets effectively help natural energetic structures of human body, enabling concentration, modification and directing in the chosen way the vital energy during ASC travel. It is enough to think of the role played by vital energy in subtle reality in order to understand the huge meaning of such tools.
Many tools match several of the mentioned above functions. For example these are magic looking glasses on which we will concentrate later, aromatic candles and thuribles (they are at the same time generators and modulators of vital energy) and many other ones.
Special architecture constructions that play the role of psychoenergetic mechanisms deserve separate examination. These are pyramidal structures as Egyptian pyramids that have a square in their basis or the ones with a pentagon as on Mars. These are also ancient megalithic constructions (stone circles, dolmens, labyrinths, painted stones). The same can be said of mantra stones, mantra flags, mantra wheels moved by wind and water common in different regions of Himalayas. Stupas, pagodas, variable chapels and temples also belong to this group. All these constructions work with energies of earth and space forming of them appropriate for a human being psychoenergetic environment and creating good conditions of entrance ASC tuning the place for the contact with certain levels of subtle reality. Some of those constructions will be examined in a more detailed way later.
The newest elaboration
A few words should be said of the newest elaboration in the field of psychoenergetic tools. Such projects are either connected with the realization of some old ideas on the new technologic basis (for example mantra wheels moved by electricity, ancient mandalas on the computer screens or as holograms etc.) or are based on new physic principles with the use of qualitatively different technologic attitudes (for instance modern spin-torsion generators use the principle of Tibetan mantra wheel but it is spinned by invisible electromagnetic whirl, thus laser negentropy (vital energy) generators form their effulgence by changing the entropy of crystal net). All these directions are very promising and interesting but their use needs serious primary approbation. Other than traditional mechanisms checked by centuries and sometimes by thousands of years, here some unexpected side-effects or other unpredictable consequences are possible. One should be especially careful with the mechanisms based on new physic principles.
Nevertheless, unproper use of traditional constructions may also present a serious danger. For example the same Egyptian pyramid concentrates the energy inside. At the same time the environment is drained of energy and the zone of negative energies appears over the pyramid. The scale of this effect can be easily seen in the city of pyramids in Egypt; the blooming oasis has turned into lifeless desert. Yet, now one can buy plastic pyramids filled with sand that are supposed to be kept under the bed or chair for better health!
4.2. Mechanisms oriented towards interactions with beings
Mechanisms oriented towards interaction with spirits and other subtle beings belong to the third class. The basic mean of contact with subtle world is streams of vital energy, hence, the task can be fulfilled with the help of majority of psychoenergetic tools enumerated above. In ancient times altars were a very common tool, it served to 'pay' gods and spirits. Naturally, the payment had a form of vital energy of the sacrificed beings. In the earliest traditions human sacrifices were common, later they were replaced with sacrificial animals and as religious consciousness was growing only vegetable products as honey or milk were sacrificed, they were not connected with violence and murder. On the highest level the sacrifice is information (the sacrifice of knowledge) (Simentsov). However, in all these cases some kind of an altar is kept as the way of transmission of vital energy to the needed receiver.
As a rule the altar has a form of three-dimensional mandala, mini-temple oriented according to geographic directions. Yet, this can also be an element of the landscape, a suitable rock, a tree branch. So Siberian shamans, when they wish to make a sacrifice for the spirits of the lower world, hang the sacrifice on the Northern branch of the specially chosen tree, for the spirits of higher world they choose the Eastern one.
Another important mean of contact with the subtle world is the place of spirit. The function of this mechanism was very well expressed by one Evenky shaman. She says that idols, images and other holy subjects are 'a seat of the spirit that a person should prepare not only for the spirit but also for the guest' if he or she wants the guest to be able to talk to him or her and take this particular place (41). This 'seat' can be a spirit's figure carved of wood or some other material, its drawn image, particular tree, hole, cave. Houses for spirits are made for longer stays, this can be any of the subjects mentioned above or a tambourine, its pendants or clothes pendants (resonators), a stick, a sword etc. Some traditions, for example Thailand, make special houses for spirits which remind of small temples where the sacrifices are made (see picture 15). In more developed traditions gods or spirits dwell in appropriate yantras and mandalas (both iconography and geometric), form resonators, sculpture images.
The opposite function is fulfilled by entrapments for sinister spirits, they are supposed to attract and then isolate or throw out of our world danger beings. Such mechanisms also can have a form of small constructions or mandalas. They may also contain some bait that matches the tastes of the corresponding being. In order to protect the place of the altered state travel some special gadgets can be used to get reed of undesirable spirits, these can also be guarding spirits. In Buddhist temples such spirits (or rather their seats) are presented as two lions or dogs that seat by the both sides of the entrance. Besides one of them is on the stage of inhale and the other one is on the stage of exhale (for during the inhale fighting qualities are drastically weakened). Obviously, the image itself is not enough, all those constructions start to work only after special rituals of consecration and initiation.
4.3. Mechanisms for establishment and maintaining ASC
The fourth group of mechanisms and methods serves the establishment and maintaining ASC. Their aim is to switch our attention from the external reality of 'thick' material objects to subtle levels which goes together with blocking our five senses and changing the way of work of our brain. Furthermore, the very character of interaction of our nervous system and brain with 'subtle' body that consists of field structures (chakras and acupuncture channels seems to change. It is understandable that the control over such complicated process needs rather effective methods and tools and the less practitioner's preparation is, the more he or she needs them. Really, a deeply developed mystic enters ASC spontaneously, practically without any outer mechanisms. Thus a beginner needs external help and the worse his or her control over his or her organism and mental life is, the greater this need is
One of the oldest 'mechanisms' of this kind is variable hallucinatory substances of vegetable, animal or mineral nature (36, 37). However, in spite of the visible simplicity, this mechanism is far from being the safest and the most effective. Probably, that is the reason for which such substances are typical only for early stages of esoteric traditions development. Then they are replaced by more controlled and lacking psychological and biochemical side-effects methods and mechanisms. This picture can be observed in Hinduist, Tantrum and Tao traditions. That is why the examination of the role of hallucinatory substances in establishment ASC is a rather historical matter that allows to understand primary stages of forming of esoteric traditions.
Modern researches prove that the use of hallucinatory substances is justified only in rare cases and rather serves elaboration of individual unconscious problems than for travels in subtle reality (8). Hence, we will not concentrate in the more detailed way on the practical aspects of their use.
All existing methods and mechanisms for ASC establishment can be roughly divided in two large groups (naturally, if we take into account hallucinatory substances there would be three ones). These groups are based on psychoenergetic and psychophysical influences. Certainly, in practice the boundary between them is not too clear, for many mechanisms contain both elements. For example geometric mandalas, on the one hand, influence as psychophysiological visual factor and, on the other hand, extremely strong psychoenergetic influence is traditionally connected with them. The same can be said of a tambourine traditional shamanic instrument. On the one hand, it is a source of the rhythmic sound whose strongest influence on psychics is well known, on the other hand, it is a powerful generator of the modified vital energy. Yet, such classification helps at least somehow find the way among plenty of ancient and modern mechanisms serving ASC establishment.
Variable temple constructions that use the effect of form in order to establish ASC belong to psychoenergetic mechanisms. The same effect of form works in special crowns, helmets that make the entrance into ASC easier. These are also special mandalas and yantras with appropriate mantras (the effect grows when they are in the temple). Different aromatic substances also help ASC establishment, working by the mean of smell and by modification of vital energy streams.
One of the oldest means of ASC establishment is a breathing rhythm. It works due to the imposing of a certain rhythm and changing the amount of oxygen and other gases in blood and this way influences the brain biochemistry. Besides according to the traditional conceptions, breathing controls delivery and redistribution of prana in subtle body (chakras and acupuncture channels) and this way it can help the establishment of ASC. In order to achieve the pointed tasks earlier traditions particularly stressed intensive breathing of the hyperventilation kind, more mature ones used variable pauses.
The oldest mechanisms with obvious psychophysiologic influence are connected with imposing the rhythm. These are first of all vargan and khamus, a traditional musical instrument of Siberian shamans that is put across the teeth when is played. As a result the vibration of the metal or bone disc are transmitted to human scull bones and the whole head becomes a resonator sphere. This way rhythmic vibrations directly influence human brain. In the simplest cases this function can be fulfilled by rocks or sticks hitting each other. Naturally, plenty of such rhythm sources were invented.
However, the most popular instrument in shamanic tradition is a tambourine and its many modifications as drums, gongs, plates and so on. The first thing we see is a source of rhythmic sound that changes the regime of brain work and helps to make five senses signals quiet (42). Nevertheless, this is also a psychotronic generator where the shape effect is used (tambourine's geometric line, the material it is made of). Besides this is also a mandala drawn on the tambourine's leather and the house for helping spirits that dwell there. All those factors seem to play a more significant role than the sound itself. That is why making a good tambourine often took several years. Thus material, shape and picture influenced main connections with this or another world.
Many modern mechanisms with the similar influence are also based on the use of rhythm. These are variable audio-records with brain rhythms and video-records where brain rhythms are inbuilt in visual images (as time rhythms or space waves). Similar ideas are used in different constructions of visual stimulators as glasses or helmets where the rhythm is imposed by bright flashes of light, sometimes they use colorful spatial waves. More flexible influence is ensured by systems with biologic reversal connection where the qualities of stimulation depend on natural biorhythms of the human organism, their frequency, amplitude, phase etc. (11).
New and very promising attitudes are based on the use of computer systems of virtual reality, virtual helmets and suits working in interactive regimes. They allow to match traditional methods and images (mandalas, mantras) with qualitatively new technologies of influencing psychics. Yet, such mechanisms are still at the stage of preliminary research projects.
Also works concerning the use of variable psychotronic generators and other alike mechanisms for establishing and deepening ASC are at the moment on the level of experimental research.
Another interesting attitude is based on the phenomena of sensory deprivation. In ancient Tibet monk's initiation included several months stay in the absolutely isolated cell in the depths of a mountain. This enabled to minimize the stream of sensory stimulation and obtain a deeper entrance into subtle reality. In the XX-th century this principle was rediscovered during the research on sensory deprivation conducted in the frames of the space program. That is how the isolation bath was elaborated it is a small pool filled with warm salty water unpenetrable by light and sound. The temperature and density of water were maintained on the level equal to corresponding characteristics of human body. This way the signals of five senses became minimal and ASC entrance was much easier. Modern versions of this mechanism sometimes use additional influence of the specially matched music.
Certainly, only enumeration of mechanisms (gadgets) for subtle travels used in variable traditions from shamanism and magic to mysticism and religion would take plenty of place. That is why we will concentrate only on some of them suitable for a modern human and well checked in our days. Their detailed descriptions and methods of use can be found in Appendix 5, now we will illustrate everything that was said with few examples.
Magic mirrors and accumulators
One of the most effective helpers for entering ASC and crossing into the needed subtle space, the travel itself and return are magic mirrors. In fact externally they usually do not have the reflecting surface of mirrors we are used to. Sometimes they are even absolutely black, dull or rough. The term 'mirror' means that they can be a passage into other subtle spaces, for esoteric tradition first of all treats the mirror as the subtle door, passage leading to other worlds. The magic mirror is a diaphragm that hides the entrance into subtle tunnel and also as a radiator of the directed stream of vital energy (43).
Mirrors matched with magic accumulators are especially effective. In this case accumulator works as an intensifier of the mirror's magic qualities and as a modulator of the emanated by it energy (44). Magic mirrors constructions and methods of work with them are described in a more detailed way in Appendix 5.
Stupa is one of the oldest architecture resonators common in Buddhist tradition. One of its functions is connected with harmonizing of environment energies and creation of the deeper contact with higher levels of universe. The important thing is that other than Egyptian pyramids stupa not only concentrates the energy inside but also emanates it around. At the same time stupa's geometry reflects the structure of Kalachakra mandala, i. e. works as a kind of a three-dimensional map of subtle reality, a model of the universe. All this makes the space around it appropriate for ASC travels. One of the most common practices of work with stupa is going around it in the direction of clock hands movement, reading mantras and visualization of connections between different parts of stupa and one's subtle body with the cosmos of Kalachakra (see Chapter 6). Mantra OM MANI PADME HUM is often used for it.
The symbolism of stupa is variable. It simoultaneously symbolizes not only the structure of the Kalachakra cosmos but also the teaching of Buddha and Buddha himself (his subtle body). Picture 16 shows the section of stupa common in Tibetan Buddhism and picture 17 shows the stupa placed in Nepal, in foothills of Everest, 3200 meters height above sea level. If we compare stupa with the structure of Kalachakra cosmos (see Chapter 6) its lower multi-level part up to spherical dome corresponds with three lower discs of primary elements, the dome contains the upper disc of earth, 12 paths of wind and Meru mountain and above them its top and the hierarchy of upper heaven coats are situated (45). At the same time each of the stupa's levels corresponds with one of primary elements as it is shown on the picture 16. The lower square part up to the dome is 'earth', the dome itself is 'water', thirteen discs on the blade present 'fire', 'the umbrella' over the blade (sometimes also with Sun and Moon over it) is 'air', the flame on the very top (and sometimes Sun and Moon below it) presents 'ether'.
The 'tree of life' is situated in the middle of empty space inside the stupa, it is a model of the tree of the world (of a picket, a mountain), the central axis around which the universe is structured. It is usually made of the best sandal or non-toxic fruit tree. In those places of the 'tree of life' which are marked with white circles mantra syllables OM, AH, HUM, TRAM, HRIH are written from top to bottom, they remind of the connection between the stupa and chakras of subtle body. Form this point of view 'the tree of life' appears as analogy of the central channel.
Usually relics of a saint's body, pieces of his garment and sacred texts are put in empty space inside the stupa. Small sculpture stupa images (tsha tsha) made of clay in Tibet contain ashes of dead. All this together with initiative rituals allows to turn stupa into the channel between our reality and higher subtle levels.
Mantra wheels are put around big stupas in order to strengthen its psychoenergetic influence. They are moved by pilgrims as they walk around. In hilly landscapes stupas are placed along the roads or in sacred places, places of power next to mantra stones, flags, wheels moved by water or wind. All this together works as the most powerful tool for balancing and harmonization of landscape's energies and creation the best conditions for people's life and spiritual practice.
Further examination of mechanisms of work of such constructions, their integration with modern technologies can give new powerful tools for restoration and maintaining ecological balance on our planet.
4.4. Principles of map-making
As a seaman or astronaut needs navigational maps, so a traveler in parallel universes and subtle worlds should have appropriate set of variable maps. Some of them are maps ordering mutual positions and connections of different worlds, others are maps of separate worlds describing their spatial organization. It is understandable that such maps should be much more complicated than usual geographic ones at least because of four (or more) dimensions of the space presented by them.
Normally such maps use the image of cosmic tree or heaven mountain in order to organize the space. Correspondingly the roots are associated with the lower world, the trunk with the middle one and the crown of the tree is connected with the upper world. Often the images of heavenly bodies (Sun, Moon, the Pole Star and others) play the same role.
However, such vertical construction is rather a simplified way of description than the reflection of real connections between the worlds. As we have already mentioned the organization of universes in multidimensional space reminds more of a bunch of grapes where every berry is a universe. All of them are connected with each other directly.
The other extreme would be to present the subtle level of reality as homogeneous and amorphous mass of worlds.
Naturally, some worlds are connected with each other stronger than with other ones. The character of such connection may also vary. It is clear that the more significant the differences between the physic laws, geometry of space and time are, the more difficult the establishment of connection between such worlds is. And the other way round alike universes can be strongly connected and have common history and influence each other.
Alike worlds can form a kind of clasters: braphmaturas (the ones with common metahistory) and sakaulas (the ones with 'half-transparent' boundary between them) as it was described in D.Andreev's book (46).
The following kinds of such connections unifying different worlds can be schematically distinguished:
Such root connection can manifest through any of the first three points, i. e. express through more 'transparent' boundary between corresponding worlds in certain geographic, geologic, natural or national regions etc.
We would have to change the normal look of a geographic map, for we have to present the multidimensional space on the surface. As it has already been mentioned in the fourth dimension the objects seems to be turned inside out. Picture 18a shows how this is done with the spherical shape of Earth we are used to. First we make a cut from the surface to the center. Then the edges of the cut are widened and the center is going down. As a result the Earth surface transforms into the protuberant disc and its inner coats take the form of the cone with its top in the Earth center.
Such transformation enables the presentation of root connections of geographic and geologic regions of our planet with corresponding parallel universes as it is shown on the picture 18b. Demonic and after-death worlds of the going down raw appear to be connected with geologic regions of Earth, thus the worlds of the up-going raw are connected with geographic and ethnic regions (46). Naturally, these worlds are not in our space. Their structure simply up to the certain extant reflects geometry and organization of corresponding parts of our planet and in those places the boundary between them is more transparent.
It is clear that presentation of such multidimensional reality on the flat sheet of paper is a difficult and ungrateful task which is often impossible to fulfill.
From this point of view huge perspectives are given by the use of computers and virtual reality technology. Especially when we interact with the computer not through the flat screen but through the virtual helmet that gives the three-dimensional picture. This direction only begins its development and it is too early to speak of working virtual maps of the subtle world. Some mathematical tasks are still to be solved they are connected with transformation of multidimensional spaces in two- and three-dimensional projections suitable for human psychics perception and the visual interface also needs improvement. Yet, it is only a matter of time.
© Evgueny Faydysh. 1999.