HEALING AND SPIRITUALITY
Deeper Healing – Using the Siddhi Path to Miraculousness
Shi Yao Hai, Master Teacher and Healer Buddha’s Alchemy
April 25, 2018
Understanding the Siddhi Path
Siddhi is a Sanskrit word that means accomplishment, success, achievement, and perfection. It is also a word used for supernatural abilities and yogic powers. It comes from the root word “sad”, which means true or truth. So from a yogic perspective, siddhi is a natural phenomenon that seems “super” to what is common or normal. The word Siddha refers to one who works with siddhis. Here we are using the word siddhi to reference a skill base in healing, and in developing consciousness that is much less limited than normally occurs. Buddha Himself taught that the greatest siddhi is enlightenment, which is considered the highest state of consciousness possible for humans. The development of siddhis then becomes a means for living a life of miraculousness.
People have asked me, “What’s the difference between miraculousness and a miracle?”. Miraculousness is a state of mind for approaching life. It is a mindset and a state of consciousness that an individual embodies and uses in daily life. Miraculousness describes a way of being. A miracle is something that a person might be aware of, or experiences as a one-time event. They perceive it as something that they are not living, but rather as some “thing” that has happened TO them. It is something separate from themselves. It is something that happens in their life but does not necessarily change the way that they are looking at life.
Most people think that the cause of a miracle occurring has to do with some deity, a saint, God, or some outside power, and they usually do not think too much about the idea that they have a part in it. Miracles happen when people are not only in need, but have a very strong sense of connection with life, with the life force or with what people call God, what Buddha called the Infinite. They often have a very strong place in themselves that is resonating in a state of very deep love, or unconditional love. When one can sustain this, they are living from a level of consciousness that is open to miraculousness.
A look at the life of Dipa Ma, a revered Buddhist saint and well known Siddha from India, gives us insight into what life might be like when living from this state of consciousness. Dipa Ma studied the Buddhist siddhis for many years. The rigorousness of the meditation and mind state practices, and some serious health issues that may have proved fatal for many were not enough to deter her determined heart. I put emphasis on the word heart. Although development of siddhis undoubtedly involves developing great strength of mind, more importantly, connection to the Infinite via the life force is what brings true power to the path. And this connection is achieved largely through growing the heart. My native friend JC Lucas put it this way: does it grow corn (serve a functional purpose/truth), or does it grow the heart (serve a spiritual purpose/Truth)? The heart is the seat of the life force in a human. It resonates at the highest energetic frequency possible for our species. Abdu’l Baha, the most saintly of saints from the Bahai tradition, says that the heart is a step-down transformer for higher spiritual energies. Tibetan Buddhists refer to the heart as the seat of the mind, as it is the heart that really confers spiritual intelligence. It is through an open and loving heart that we encounter the strength of the Divine. When we talk about growing consciousness and being in a state of unconditional love, this is what we are doing. We are not the source, but we tune into the Source through our hearts, and are then able to share the power of the Source in a variety of ways.
It is through an open and loving heart that we encounter the strength of the Divine. When we talk about growing consciousness and being in a state of unconditional love, this is what we are doing. We are not the source, but we tune into the Source through our hearts, and are then able to share the power of the Source in a variety of ways.
This type of inner reality creates miraculousness because it is created through the mind that is not constricted, the mind that is not conditioned, the mind that is not limited in the ways of being and thinking. It is that, which creates a bond with life. Out of that bond, comes the possibility of miraculousness. This, however, requires strict conscious awareness and focus.
In her earlier years, Dipa Ma was known for her incredible miracle like feats that seemed to defy reality (as most people perceive it). She could walk through walls, dive into the ground like a pool of water, and appear and disappear at will. These things she was able to accomplish after much intense work with mind practices and what are called formless states of consciousness. This laid an incredible groundwork for the even more immensely miraculous happenings that surrounded and flowed from Dipa later in life, and became testimonies to her deep connection with the life force and its Source. When Dipa arrived and moved into a slum neighborhood in Calcutta, the crime rate dropped quite dramatically, just by virtue of the strength of her calming presence. She taught and helped to physically and spiritually heal so many students and people. They would line up for hours spilling out of her tiny one-room Calcutta apartment, into the hallways, just to spend a few moments near her, receive her blessings, or hear her teachings. Despite her own physical difficulties, she would lovingly attend to each as if they were her own child. This type of energy and strength comes from the heart. The mind certainly assists the heart to grow and is likewise indispensable, but it is the heart that allows the most profound connection to the Source.
Stretching the Boundaries of Who You Are
For the Siddha, the mindset of miraculousness becomes a foundation for developing the awarenesses and skills for healing. Miraculousness as a state of mind and heart connects the healer to something greater than themselves. Miraculousness allows the individual access to energies and knowledge that is outside of what they already know. This is something that does not actually come from them, but rather through them. Healing then becomes a means of expressing the mind state of miraculousness, and because healing is a service, it is possible to bypass the interferences and impediments of egotistic self. This type of inner reality creates miraculousness because it is created through the mind that is not constricted, the mind that is not conditioned, the mind that is not limited in the ways of being and thinking. It is that, which creates a bond with life. Out of that bond, comes the possibility of miraculousness. This, however, requires strict conscious awareness and focus.
It is conscious awareness and focus that defines what is possible and not possible. That is, what a person believes is true about life and how they fit into that, how life is supposed to be in order to be happy and succeed, and how they perceive themselves fitting or not fitting into those expectations. These views are what actually define and circumscribe what people can experience, and therefore build the parameters of their reality. You develop a sense of self based upon conditions around you, based on what you think you’re supposed to be doing in life – these are all sets of rules that people put on themselves, adding up to impossibilities beyond those beliefs. People try to create roles, to fit into those roles, and that is their sense of self. They are either accomplishing the roles that they want, supposedly to be happy or to be successful, or they’re not or they’re somewhere in between. They’re doing bits of making it happen, making it not happen, and not being able to work it. No matter where on the scale of success one is in working their created roles, it is all what creates the limitations of impossibility, and impossibility is what works against miraculousness. In more common terms, this is known as the ego.
Ego is a false sense of who you are. I say false because it doesn’t come anywhere near describing your inner nature, your real and true reality. As stated, it’s a sense of selfness that’s based upon conditions and things around you, and you use those things to define who you are. Conditioned thinking is like patterns of habit that people have. They look at something and they think certain thoughts, and they judge things to be a certain way. They label things with meaning. I am not referring to meaning in functional thinking. You pick up a pencil, and you know that a pencil is just a pencil, and nobody will miss it. It’s not going to damage your life if it goes missing. If you need one, you just replace it. It doesn’t mean anything. There’s no sense of self in it. That’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about relating to something in a way so that the conditions of it describe some sort of aspect of yourself. You attach a sense of self to it.
If you were to write a list of things that described you – your job, how well you did at work, your hobbies, your interest, your relationships, what you owned, what you had control over, the things that you use to function within your life – and you use all of these things to reference yourself, you could probably write in point form a sheet or two of paper that describes you compared to everything else. But here is the interesting part – ego isn’t really defining you for what’s good about you, it’s defining you in terms of your limitations, because what you think of as you, is the limits of what you are and what you can be. You stretch those boundaries sometimes a little bit, but never outside of the structure of how you think about who you are. If you grow a little bit, that’s usually incorporated into the definition of who you are that already existed. It’s not added as a new reality for you. It’s simply holding to your perception of self and your capabilities defined off of that perception of self. It’s melded in with what is already there. That’s what ego is. It’s kind of a self-limiting set of circumstances, ways of being and thinking, that really don’t have anything to do with reality.
There is another self we talk about. In Buddhism, Buddha taught not self. He called the self that the Hindus speak about as the Atman and the inner great God self, as being not self. One of the ways to interpret that is to think of not self as a non-definable self, a not limited by condition self. That’s your real self. If you look back on your life, from when you were little as a child, you will note that all of the things that you did, all of the things that you valued, all of the things that you believed, all of the things you worked towards, they’ve changed, countless numbers of times throughout your life. The things that you valued when you were a child, you don’t value anymore. Even things that you valued as a young adult or the things that you valued a year ago have changed. What you believe about life, can and does change. Circumstances in your life, and how you value them can and does change. So much of that is not lasting or real in terms of being able to sustain a permanently defined sense of self. You won’t be today who you said you were last year. What is real is the awareness behind the sense of self that works with supposed to be’s; the awareness in behind the dramas, and behind the stories. That awareness has never changed, it has always been the same. You’re not your thoughts, because you’re the thinker of your thoughts. You’re not your body, because if your body was damaged or seriously maimed, its capacity changes. What you are doesn’t change. Your true self, is indescribable, it’s a reality that can’t be defined or confined to descriptions.
If you can get rid of the senses of self (all of the conditioned self-references), and become aware of what’s bigger in you, and around you, you are developing a state open to miraculousness, because miraculousness is not dependent on conditions. In fact, it’s kind of adverse to conditionality. It blossoms in the realities of unconditional circumstances and unconditional views. It’s not limited.
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