Arul Dev is a Yoga practitioner who, among other things, works through the vehicle of the body. The body can be used as a viable means for going inside. To do this we need to know our body and be truly conscious of it. We must attune, sharpen and rarefy our senses to understand the hidden messages that the body imparts. It is a gateway to undreamt of treasures.
His techniques and exercises are very simple and many of them are quite short. They truly attune our awareness. Many, he says, can be employed when in the middle of our day-to-day activities. Working with him and listening to him gives important messages for everyday living.
The objective of his exercises is to establish permanent residence in what he calls the Cave of the heart. (the psychic being). With sincerity and aspiration, we use the body as our referral point. We also work with the natural breath. From the first session, we placed our awareness on the natural breath and, whenever we get distracted, we brought our attention back to the breath.
Arul’s exercises were separated in parts, some only lasting 2 minutes but the meditative atmosphere was maintained throughout the entire sessions. There is a continuous unbroken thread throughout. We were constantly shifting poises, but in a subtle and progressive way. As the workshop ensued, we worked deeper and many commented on an inner quietness settling within their being. The aim was always to go deeper and deeper. It was profound and attentive work and each practice was guided with the considerable and very calm integrity of the facilitator.
From the awareness of the breath, we observed the expansion of the chest, our emotional centre, in tune with the breath. From there, we moved deeper into the heart region and pointed ourselves towards the Cave of the heart, as if we were looking down from the top of a well. We simply observed what is in it. We use our inner sense to guide us always.
We went deeper within the chest in the emotional region and also became aware of the depth in the Cave and slowly allowed the inner region of the chest and all the emotions there to turn inward facing the depth of the heart.
This gives just a glimpse into the practice of the first session. With a poise of surrender, we allowed the Divine to reach us.
In the second session we attuned to the inner sound and differentiated between the sound from the surface of the chest and the sound from within. We observed our aspiration, how it arises from the physical, from the chest itself. We were always asking, ‘What is the aspiration?’ We start at the surface and go deeper inside the Cave of the heart, asking this question.
We then got a glimpse into the aspect of the Self-Existent. Firstly we observed the natural breath, then we plunged into the Cave and made an attempt to hear what is emerging from the depths. We tried to become witness to something which is aware of itself. We let the body be that witness. There was a magical stillness.
On the 3rd session, we moved to knowledge by identity. As always, we focused on the natural breath in order to ground ourselves. Again we proceeded through separate stages. We then placed our attention on the surface of the chest. Then we moved inward to the inner regions of the chest and the emotional area. We then turned toward the Cave. We summoned our inner senses to summon the inner sight, sound or feeling. We felt the depth of this Cave and what it felt like. Then we dropped everything and for 4 minutes underwent the process of knowledge by identity, become one with whatever consciousness was there at the very depth. We attempted to contemplate through identification and not thought.
In connecting with the higher consciousness, in the depth of our heart, we observed the natural gap between the natural breath. We then combined this practice by using knowledge by identity through any method that summoned us.
‘The Divine is the centre of everything.’ By placing attention to our ears, we repeated this phrase for 4 minutes; we repeated silently in a way that our inner ear could hear. The inner senses are very important for transformation.
The 4th session looked at anchor-points. We were guided to anchor our consciousness above the mind and station it there, going through our thoughts and ascending upwards through the inner terrains of the mind, until we reached a zone of stillness. We allowed our awareness to spread out and pointed our consciousness upwards for a period of time.
The next step was to spread ourselves horizontally into the vastness within the heart region. We then brought our awareness to the soles of our feet and became aware of the consciousness below our feet for a period of time.
After every step, we were encouraged to let go and stay with ourselves before moving to the next step.
The workshop concluded with a guided exercise throughout the body in aspiration and receptivity.
What did you enjoy most in the workshop?
“As it was fully experiential, filled with practices that we can use, it was very helpful.”
“I loved the explanation, guide, engagement and the energy of the speaker.”
“The practices… the humble facilitation as well as the silence.”
“The experiential nature of it.”
“This was the most experiential workshop that NAMAH has conducted so far, which made it very unique.”
Thank you for the sessions, Arul. They were really nice. Especially to feel the Mother’s Presence.
Thank you very much, Arul Dev. Beautiful experience…. It brought deep quietude and I was wonderfully surprised how easy it was to connect again even if one got distracted.”
“It helped calm and silence the mind, which added a valuable dimension/experience to the talks and wonderful workshops organised by NAMAH.