Kalaripayat – Shaivite Martial Art (52)

In this spiritual lesson, let us take a look at this aspect of the Shaivite spiritual tradition from which all yoga comes, as well as its aspects such as the presented Kālāripāyat, which means nothing more or less than a spiritual martial art, probably, as far as its mystical theme is concerned, the most source in relation to the arts brought by the monk Bodhidharma to China and later spread throughout the Far East. Kālāripāyat is mainly a weapon fight and the art of using various types of white weapons that were (and are) known in the East. It is the martial art of Shaivite yoga. The yogic term Kālāripa or Kālā is an attribute of Durga Devi, the consort of Lord Śiva, who is the patroness of martial arts and the conqueror of all evil embodied as the asuric demon Mahisha. Undoubtedly, the property of the Master Warrior is related to the concept of Kāla, which means the Supreme Spirit as the Destroyer of the World, the world of lust, stains and contaminations, as well as the Saturnian fate that completes the destiny of evil, demonic beings (Asuras). Kāla is also the attribute name of Yamaraja, the King of Death. A Master (Paśu) is one who has overcome the fear of death, one who is indifferent to death. In this way, Devi Durga is the patroness of the Holy Knights, the Master Warriors. She, who was created as the embodiment of the Supreme Mistress of martial arts, defeated the demon (Asura) Mahisha who threatens everyone, which illustrates the fact that Kālārpa (art, martial skill) serves to defeat evil, annihilate darkness, and only for this purpose one should practice and improve him/herself in The Way of Fighting.

Devi Durga, equipped with the Trident (Triśula), the Disk (Ćakra) and the Bow and arrows (Dhanu), mounted on the Lion (Simha), went into battle and defeated Mahisha, the embodiment of evil. Durga Devi’s body was formed from the dangerous energy that is the power of angels (devas, gods) inhabiting Heaven. The lion (Simha) ridden by Śri Devi symbolizes the power and control over anger, which, when held in the power of divine consciousness, becomes the Wrath of God defeating all evil. Devi Durga (Bhairavi) demonstrates extraordinary, divine knowledge of the art of warfare. The demon was killed with the help of Triśula, the divine Trident given by Lord Śiva. In autumn, India celebrates a festival in honour of the patroness of the Celestial Warriors, called Durgapuja. The name Durga itself literally means a person “unapproachable” or “inaccessible” or rather “not allowing herself to be possessed by the forces of demonic evil of the asuras” that threaten the world.

The preparatory Disciple Path is usually divided into three or five conferred degrees, which culminate in the generally four-fold Path of the Martial Arts Master, Ćaturpaśupata, the degrees of which we will look at in some detail.

Paśu Sang

In the first level of mastery, Kālārin masters moving in a square to perfection. All forms of movement forward and backward as well as left and right must be perfectly trained. The Sang degree requires mastery of the technique to be as fluid as a stream of flowing water. The movement is continuous and smooth, and as powerful as a wave or a swift stream. The movement is also heavy and thrilling like the flow of a waterfall.

The axis of the body, Sushumna, must resemble a stable and unyielding pole. The body is embedded in the hips threefold: physically, emotionally and mentally. The top of the head is connected to the sky, as if suspended on a rope to the sky. We practice the Sushumna axis in the student’s triangular posture (Trikona). The Trikona and the vertical central axis must be hidden in a square position. In the Trikona stance, we generally have three directions: left, right and forward. You also need to master and hide the inverted triangle stance in a square.

Indifference to all passions is the essential, key feature of Paśu – the Martial Art Master. The master must master the sound vibration of Kling (as in the pronunciation of English word “clean” with addition of “g” sound at the end so “cleang”), which frees the psyche and body from the power of desires and passions that disturb the alertness and attention of the mind. This sound comes from the lower abdomen, lower torso.

Kālārin is an Arya (Noble One) and a Kshatriya (Knight of Wisdom), and therefore nobility and wisdom are essential qualities to become an authentic Master Warrior. The spiritual protector and guardian of the Kālāri Marga (The Path of Fight) is Indra Deva, whose consciousness is born from focusing on the centre of gravity of the physical body to the limit of all possibility. The Bindhu of the earth, of the body, the droplet of heaviness and weight should be practiced to absolute perfection. Only then does the degree of natural embodiment of the martial art, Kalarisahaja, emerge. The Earth Bindhu is located at the base of the vertical axis of the torso and head (Sushumna), and the Bindhu concentration point is the place between the rectum and external genital organs.

In the first degree, the master is strongly concentrated in the body, up to the single-pointedness of the body and psyche at the lower point of  torso, at the base of vertical axis. The Sushumna must be firmly seated in a triangular posture. Paśu Sang is a master of martial arts techniques and forms, a master of controlling his own body with the help of concentrated willpower. Ićcha – good will, focused will, is the basic mental attitude that allows you to achieve the rank of Master. All techniques and forms are performed based on the principle of centrifugal alignment of the body, as if we were a pole, cyclone or rotating spiral. The body’s axis resembles a spring standing vertically. Vīraśakti – the power to perform heroic or valiant deeds must ultimately be awakened and released until the warrior becomes a true hero, a hero called Vīraha.

Paśu Shang

The Kālāri Master, in the second degree, must cultivate calm and undisturbed mental and physical balance. He rests with his right hand folded with left hand under his navel. In this way, he covers the pubic bone with his hands. In its repose it resembles a standing elephant. It is big and heavy, so heavy that nothing can move it. The white elephant signifies the spiritualizing process of physical development and increase in strength. Kunjara (elephant) is the strength and purification of the physical body. The balance, stability and heaviness of an elephant resembles the power of a square. The elephant’s posture is called the square posture. The posture of the mountain (Parvata) and flexibility of the trunk like a snake (Bhujanga) are essential.

The manual technique involves training the energy of a short circuit resembling an electric discharge in the atmosphere. This is the energy of lightning, called Vajra. When we achieve crystal calmness and equanimity, lightning power spontaneously emerges in push and pull techniques. Vajra must work in two directions: outward (away from oneself) and inward (toward oneself). It is the Vajra of pulling and pushing, of stepping and conquering.

Vajra is the flow of energy of the male principle, its tension resembles masculine, violent ejaculation. The release of Vajra energy requires intense and total commitment in a flash-like moment of time. It is the energy of the moment, the more powerful it is, the shorter it lasts. Lightning hits the very centre of the axis of the tree it hits. It immediately smites and kills the entire tree. Lightning moves down the tree from above, which resembles a sword slashing (kripana) from above. Vajra is practiced with the outer, back part of the hand, resembling a reversed fist.

Paśu (Kālāri Master) must practice the open hand technique with four fingers together and the thumb drawn towards the palm. The hand is open and fingertips point upwards. This is called the pushing hand technique (Vari/Abhaya). The base of the hand is where the lunar pushing force is released. This technique ultimately allows you to act sensitively and removes and dissipates all anxiety (fear and dread). Fears and anxieties prevent the lightning power from being unleashed. The master must be free from fears and anxieties, just as a diamond is free from impurities, perfectly. The stability and stability of techniques and exercises performed while standing on one leg, or even on the toes of one leg, must be excellent.

Paśu Shang bases his martial path (Kālārimarga) on dynamic, fast and effective movement of the entire body. Shang appears to be sitting even when he stands on the tip of one foot, so stable is his posture, which is derived from the power of the square. Paśu Shang embodies the Indo-European (Aryan) archetype of Indra the Warrior, the Holy Knight. The way of fighting resembles a war elephant, the heaviest fighting machine among living beings. The vital and fighting power of an elephant is simply unimaginable.

Paśu Śang

The next level of Master Kālāri must master the peace and purity of a white, mute swan or a wandering white goose. Silence and restraint both in speech and thought promote concentration and alertness. The master must have control over his senses and be able to effectively restrain them. His hands must move with the fluidity and softness of a stream of flowing water. The repetitions of the techniques must be as identical in every subtlety as the successive beads of the rosary. One hundred repetitions must be equally precise and perfect in their details. Yes, the Master must improve the technical form of his movements.

The master must perfect the principles of using a short stick, a club as long as the forearm, including the hand. This is a weapon called Danda, a staff. This stick is also used to instruct and correct practicing students. Danda is called the weapon of Lord Brahma because it is very creative and creatively helpful in the martial art discipline.

Vajra Mudra in the lotus position for one Muhurta must be completely mastered. Both the Vajra Mudra of the joined hands and the Vajra Mudra of the lower hands, as well as the Vajra Mantra.

Paśu Śang resembles a bird in battle. He is as dignified and calm as a swan or a white migratory goose. He works as if in place, without the need to move. He works like the moon. He reflects the energy directed at him. He seems to see and react in all directions at once.

Paśu Vang

The energy of the Fourth Degree Master belongs to the feminine principle. Here the driving force is the power of the female archetype, like a goddess or a female angel. So Paśu Vang is extremely gentle and subtle in his actions. He uses extremely gentle powers. His posture resembles a Circle like a lotus flower floating on a lake. It is impossible to predict his movements, methods or directions of action.

Sang’s weapon is the Triśula (Trident) and a Sword with a broad blade that more closely resembles a large, elongated Sickle. At this stage the Master has completely mastered the energy of Apāńana (Water Flow) and has risen above fears and worries about life or death to which he remains indifferent.

Śri Lang Paśupata

This is the honorary title of Successor Master among the Supreme Kālāripāyat Instructors. The title Hang or Hong, also Han, is also used. Śri Lang Paśu is a Master wearing a golden robe and belongs to the golden robe knighthood. The sashes (ribbons or belts) of Masters of all ranks are trimmed with gold thread as a sign of mastery over weapons, a sign of Kālārpa mastery. The Supreme Master wields at least 10 types of weapons, including Triśula (trident), Tanka (carving scraper), Kripana (sword), Vajra (thunderbolt), Dahana (torch, fire), Nagendra (snake), Ghanta (bell, sound), Paśa (lasso, noose), Pinaka and Śara (bow and arrows), Paraśu (hatchet, axe), Ańkuśa (goad, short pike), Danda (staff, club), Ćakra (spinning disc) , Gada (club), Śakti (spear, harpoon). There are more teachings about the practice of the spiritual martial art derived from yoga, which we will discuss in future studies of the yoga teachings. Hum!

Many Blessings on your Path to Awakening and Realization!

Om Namaśśivaya! Hum!

Aćaryaćarya Swami Lalita-Mohan G.K.


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