Whatever I can name I can let go of. When I let go of every name, even the name of God, who remains?
The deepest meditation is not repetition of the divine name. Nor is it concentration on the mantra, nor contemplation of any form that could be named. In deep meditation, mantra dissolves, name and form evaporate, and with the dissolution of nama-rupa, mind also vanishes.
When I surrender all that can be named, there is unfathomable silence, resonant with a thunderous Word of creation. And when my own name is thoroughly lost, I Am.
"Layam vraja," said Rishi Ashtavakra. "Dissolve now!" What remains is self-luminous awareness, without form, boundary, or content.
Meditation practice begins on the level of nama-rupa, name and form. A breath, a mantra, or one's Ishta-devata (chosen form of God) gently floats on waves of awareness. But because meditation does not cling or grasp, the object vanishes into the subject. Then the radiance of pure subjectivity becomes its own object. This little mind dissolves into the sparkling sea of Consciousness. Nameless bliss.
Some may say, "It sounds like falling asleep." No. Pure Consciousness is beyond waking, dreaming, and deep sleep. The breath of the mantra does not fall into sleep, but into Presence. And nothing is more awake! Presence is alertness itself, needing no-thing to be aware of.
At the dissolution of nama-rupa, awareness Christalizes in itself. All thinking dissolves, and for a brief stunning instant every photon of the body dematerializes in the womb of the Uncreated.
Even a flash of transcendental deep meditation is healing medicine. In that breathless moment is a New Creation, regenerating mind and body together. For at the level of Presence, matter and spirit are waves of the same silence. Subject and object both arise from one energy, which is ananda, bliss.
In his Biblical epistles, St. Paul spoke often of this re-creation in the crystal depths of Christ Consciousness:
"Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind." ~Romans 12:2Early Christians practiced transcendental deep meditation. As described carefully in the most ancient Christina compendium on prayer, The Philokalia, the devotee began with the Name of God, carried into the heart by means of the breath. But their aim was not "vain repetition" of the Name; their aim was pure silence: "hesychasm." Thus the early Christian meditators of the desert were called "hesychasts," practitioners of silence.
"All that matters is a new creation." ~Galatians 6:15
"Any person who is in Christ is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all is made new!" ~2 Corinthians 5:17
Jesus distilled his method of meditation in the "Lord's prayer." This text is not so much a prayer as a description of the process of meditation. It was given to the disciples when they asked, "Teach us how to pray." They did not ask for a prayer: the Jewish tradition was already full of prayers. They asked HOW to pray. Jesus gave them the way of the mantra, the divine name. "Hallowed be thy name." The divine name was a mantra, a vehicle to dissolve thought and transcend the chatter of the mind, so that awareness could return to the silence at the source of creation, the silence that was there when God said, "Let there be light."
As time went by and Christianity became an extension of the Roman empire, designed to achieve political control over mass populations, Christians lost the practice of meditation. Jesus's inward way was corrupted into mere outward repetition and ritual. Only a few of the Gnostics continued to practice divine silence. Church creeds and stories about Jesus replaced the Master's practical instructions for enlightenment.
It is time for Christians to revive the ancient Way. Let your breath carry the Word of God, the mantra, into your heart. There, in the spacious stillness of the heart, offer everything that can be named to divine silence. This offering will not just re-new your own mind and body. It will regenerate the entire creation.
Jai Guru Dev