Monday is AUM-day; in search of meditation.
Now we come to the seventh state of consciousness, which can only be known through continued practice of samaadhi. As stated last week, and demonstrated somewhat by the list of definitions, the sixth state is a place to be reached by all who are dedicated, but within samaadhi are many levels also. Only with prolonged and genuine intent to realise the Truth can one come to तुरीय/TURIIYA.
Turiiya as the condition of Absolute Silence. After A, U and M there is a moment where the sound, the vibration, ceases before restarting. The term 'turiiya' quite literally means 'the fourth', referring to it being the fourth state of Consciousness. (Note that the transitional states are part of each which go before and after and are thus not used for reference to the consciousness itself.)
This state is all pervasive. Within, without. It permeates and therefore is the preceding three states also. It is that which was always present throughout our researches in A, U, and M; watching, waiting, till we can become clear and empty enough to sit within it. It is our saakshi, our witnessing self. It requires no sound, no breath, no description. Yet it is from here that we see all. The Truth of existence makes itself known. It is here that we know that, finally, we are 'awake'. Only when you stand atop the pinnacle of Everest can you truly say that you have reached the highest point of the world. Only in turiiya can you truly say that you are finally at the roof of your existence.
How do you reach a mountain top? Nowadays, many will hire a helicopter. Fine, they can see the sights, but what do they know of the joy of having made the climb? What have they experienced actually? They will meet others and say 'I have been atop that mountain, here are the pictures to prove'; then the true mountaineer in their audience will ask, 'Indeed, and who did you meet there?' To say pilot, or fellow travellers, would be to prove continued ignorance, photographs notwithstanding!
There is no technological method of reaching turiiya. There never will be. It only becomes real through effort. Then releasing effort.
It can be said that even reaching base camp on Everest gives a satisfaction, a sense of achievement and something to hold onto. This is true. Likewise, moving appropriately through A, U and M will yield much of benefit in daily life. Just because the peak seems to be something unattainable, beyond reach of the ordinary being, does not mean that one ought not to begin the trek!
In practicing with A, U and M, we are building the waves of Consciousness, grasping ever deeper meaning and sense of Self as our skill in meditation swells. We may not necessarily focus on the unmanii, the alaadanii or the samaadhi, yet we experience them. The focus in our saadhana must be the AUM as a whole, whilst understanding its discrete components. Meditation on AUM is to deconstruct and reconstruct until we know every aspect, feel every molecule, arriving at silence with ease. If, indeed, we think of AUM as waves upon the ocean, it is in arriving at turiiya that we discover the water which makes the waves. Being involved with the waves, it seemed the water as a whole was forgotten, but now we come to appreciate that the water was ever present, never missing.
It is here that we can appreciate samaadhi is not of itself The Bliss of Truth (सच्चिदानन्द/ sacchidaananda); samaadhi still exists within the dual. Turiiya alone moves the soul into yoga, union with Self wherein 'aham brahmaasmi' (I am Brahman) can be claimed. It is a sacred space. As many as truly complete the climb of Everest there are in the world who truly reach this state. Here alone can it be said 'that one is a God-man'.
Something to strive for!
Concern not about turiiya. Concern not about samaadhi. Concern only to focus fully where you can on A, U, or M. The level you are at is the correct level for you. Measure not against others. Meditation is not a competition. It is a vocation. It can lead to revelation.