Question. What is the path of silence?
Answer. The divine consciousness is said to be pervaded by utter Silence due to the unbreakable power of concentration that inheres in it naturally. This power is so potent that it reduces the consciousness to a spatial naught. It then transcends the effects of maya.
It is the same power that was described earlier as yoga shakti (the power of self-control), applicable to an individual. Its quintessential and macro form is called tapas shakti. The latter is earned by divine incarnations only through the practice of a special discipline, called tapas yoga. Tapas shakti when transmitted to an aspirant (i.e. through initiation by a satguru) makes the latter’s mind silent, in the same way as it reduce the divine consciousness to a naught. The effort that a seeker is required to make is only to be aware of it and it would do the rest, i.e., it introverts the mind and dissolves all thoughts, doubts, undesirable qualities in it. Divine attributes grow on their own as its effect. It makes the mind totally silent (or motionless) and leads to complete self-control (i.e. absorbs the ‘I’ in it).
The power of Silence sucks (or introverts) the mind into a spiritual black hole from which it cannot escape (i.e. it is destroyed).
Best results are achieved by those who surrender unconditionally to the guru’s tapas power.
There are two ways to practise the discipline of silence; first, as a path by itself and, second, in combination with other paths. The former is its classic form and was taught by the celebrated guru Dakshnimurthy to some sages at the beginning of time (i.e. the current cycle of creation). There was no exchange of words between the guru and disciples; the former divined the latter’s desire for liberation, initiated them in silence and they practised in silence to attain Self Realisation. Just as a lighted candle melts on its own, so do the mind’s impurities burn away automatically when the power of Silence is transplanted in it by a satguru. This path can be followed only by highly competent seekers, usually the ever free souls.
The second method is to combine this path with the practice of other disciplines and then every devotee can follow it. An aspirant is initiated into any of the paths described earlier but the guru also gives the power of Silence (or tapas) along with it. For example, a devotee maybe asked to repeat a divine name, which is blessed with the power of Silence. The mind is pulled inwards or is introverted by tapas shakti as one does japa (repetition) of the name. It makes the repetition far more effective than it would have been otherwise. In this method, an aspirant endeavours to control the mind by introverting it towards its centre (the point of its origin of the ‘I’ sense); that effort gets a fillip from the guru’s power that dwells there (i.e. in the centre), which acts like a powerful magnet to draw the mind there. Tapas shakti makes it easier for an aspirant to effect self-control.
Effects of this power on paths of knowledge, yoga and service are similar. The path of Silence, in any of the above forms, helps a devotee in all stages of the control of mind, i.e., discipline, purification, abidance, subsidence and destruction. It removes all kinds of obstacles to one’s progress and the divine knowledge that it manifests (in silent form) destroys fear, doubt, pride, attachment and so on. As a general rule, those who practice this path are vouchsafed the experience of mental calmness, peacefulness and blissfulness. They are usually saved from the menace of manifestation of occult powers and visions etc., which often waylay immature devotees.
Text copyright © 2016 Gurprasad.
This page was published on December 13, 2018 and last revised on December 13, 2018.