When taking or Mastering an Enlightenment Intensive Retreat, or going into meditation with a Master Teacher like Gurudev, I can actually feel the vibratory shifts occurring when one moves into deeper altered states and direct experience. I’ve often thought that if we were somehow monitored during the self-inquiry work, we would see the movement through different brain wave patterns on our journey of enlightenment.
One of my repeating EI participants, mentioned to me that she was fascinated by a book she was reading:New Brain, New World by Erik Hoffman, a retired professor who has been researching the brain and human consciousness for more than forty years and the founder of Mental Fitness & Research Center in Copenhagen where they work with brain waves in neurofeedback training. It didn’t take me long to order the book, read and be excited by the research, which contained references to Eckart Tolle, Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor, Peter Russell, Bhagavan & the Oneness University, Amrit Goswami, Osho, Andrew Newberg, Gopi Krishna, and many others.
While I recommend your reading the book for details and your own conclusions, I want to summarize a few general points which I believe relate also to self-inquiry while on EI Retreats. I’ve often said that we should take before and after pictures of participants of Enlightenment Intensives. There is such an obvious shift in their energetic demeanor, energy, and level of joy from start to finish! What has happened might be described as a change in consciousness, an enhancement of awareness, or an experience of the outer world as illusion- not what it seems to be.
In direct experience, one can directly know that consciousness is everywhere, and mind develops in the “play” of consciousness.” When we inquire within, we find the “I” or experiencer may be watching- observing all with equanimity while the ego may be resisting, judging, controlling, defending or attacking. When we are not identified with the thinking mind, we start to become more at choice.
We have for some time been aware of the reptilian brain (fight/flight/freeze to survive, comprised of the spinal cord, brainstem, midbrain including the hypothalamus), the mammalian brain (limbic system comprised of the amygdala, hippocampus and septum for memory & emotions) and the most recent evolutionary brain structure, the neocortex, which has a variety of cognitive thinking functions. Then there is also the well-known hemispheric specialization with left brain and right brain processing the same external stimuli differently. Finally, the frontal lobes developed as the fourth level of brain evolution and are the sites of voluntary functions, intentions, motives and plans, directing attention, interpreting & integrating emotions- the CEO of the brain (Goldberg 2001:23). The frontal lobes actually may act to prevent crossover of information and censorship determining what may pass as well as creating a balance between the left/thinking and right/intuitive brain.
More than a few Indian masters have said the frontal cortex in most humans is in a sleeping state and must be awakened. We have for some time been able to measure the brain’s electrical activity and track slowest delta waves (1-4 hz), theta (4-8 hz) , alpha (8-12 hz), beta (12-30 hz), and gamma ( 30-42 hz) waves. This awakening and many higher states of
consciousness cause the very fast brain wave frequency called gamma waves where there is extreme focus, energy and bliss or ecstasy. As a general rule, scientists have found the brainwave frequency reflects the MATURITY of the brain structure.
Meditation, Kriya yoga, kundalini energy, Deeksha/Shaktipat were all in this book documenting a deeply affected brain wave activity, as any yoga/ meditation practitioner can attest to from personal experience. Unfortunately, the brain during self-inquiry or break-through on EI’s was not evaluated. Yet, from much personal experience taking and giving the retreats, when we are dedicating three days and nights to deep, intentional self-inquiry, I will venture to say we are training the brain to be in the eternal present moment. This is the Sacred Space in which all life, all truth, unfolds. As we move into Direct Experience, I suspect we are at the 30-40 hz gamma waves as our perception becomes one of high resolution with increased capacity to perceive as everything slows down, and the usual sense of separateness is completely gone. Indeed…YOU (the sense of me) becomes an illusion, and only life exists. YOU are ONE with all that is!
Erik Hoffman states: “Going into the highest state of consciousness, called samadhi, will bring about a return to the Creator. Thus samadhi is creation in reverse. In it there is no subject to experience, since the subject is included in the experience. Samadhi can only be realized in retrospect, when the subject returns to normal consciousness. It it the experience of pure Consciousness, Nothingness, the Void, or God.” (New Brain, New World, p 212).
Somehow Charles Berner, Yogeshwar, under the deep influence of his guru, Bapaji / Swami Kripaulu, was able to brilliantly formulate a technique, a sacred safe space, and the staff training for an environment where the
brain can truly mature, evolve, and awaken. This is a new level of brain organization which in time will be better integrated to affect new levels of higher consciousness in life. Wouldn’t THAT be nice?
What an honor it is…to be doing the Enlightenment Intensive self-inquiry work on Gurudev’s beautiful Florida campus, the Amrit Yoga Institute, and to have him visit with us Thursday evening as we begin our 2016 EI, sharing from his heart his experiences at Kripaulu with Yogeshwar and continuing grace-filled gifts of our lineage. What a blessing!
This is the experience of pure Grace, which you are given an opportunity to directly experience on the rare offering of an Enlightenment Intensive Retreat. The evolution of human consciousness into higher states of harmony, love, empathy, and compassion are drastically needed to create a better world and to avoid both civilization and the Earth’s destruction. Organized religion and its separative views may be superseded by spirituality where logic and science are not competitive but complementary. When we can have our own direct experiences, our own personal relationship with a higher intelligence, our purpose and meaning will bring us to fulfill our potential, our mission. You are needed to help bring Mother Earth and humanity back on track for a New Earth, as Eckhart Tolle says. We are all in this together! We are one. All are needed.
I hope you find this as interesting as I did, and come join us this year!