Yoga Chudamani Upanishad (Sanskrit Text, Transliteration, Word-to-Word Meaning, English Translation and Detailed Commentary)

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Item Code: IDF471
Author: Swami Satyadharma
Publisher: Yoga Publications Trust
Language: Sanskrit Text, Transliteration, Word-to-Word Meaning, English Translation and Detailed Commentary
Edition: 2013
ISBN: 9788186336274
Pages: 324 (Illustrated with B & W Figures)
Cover: Paperback
Other Details 8.5" X 5.3"
Weight 440 gm
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Book Description

From the Back of the Book:

Yoga Chudamani Upanishad is a manual of higher sadhana for advanced and initated aspirants. It delineates the ancient path of kundalini awakening in its original and pure form before the proliferation of modern yogic literature. The text elucidates a unique combination of kundalini yoga and vedantic upasana. It discusses the nadis, prana vayus, chakras and kundalini Shakti, and also provides detailed descriptions of ajapa gayatri and pranava, which are older vedic and upanishadic meditative disciplines.

The text includes the original Sanskrit verses, along with transliteration, anvay, translation and a comprehensive commentary by Swami Satyadharma Saraswati under the guidance of Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati. For students of Indian philosophy, it provides a valuable study of the compatibility of Yoga and Vedanta, or the tantric and vedic systems of philosophy and practice.

Details from the Book:

The Yoga Upanishads represent an important cultural merging of the vedantic and tantric traditions, which were earlier conceived as opposed to one another, but are here shown to be complementary systems. Yoga has its ancient origins in Tantra, and the yogic practices and physiology are all based in this tradition. The Yoga Upanishads deal with the major yogic aspects of Tantra, such as: kundalini, laya, nada, mantra and hatha. These texts further detail and describe how the yogic practices culminate in the vedantic realization of the Self as Atma/Brahman, or one with the absolute reality.

The Yoga Upanishads were composed after the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and form an important part of the classical yoga literature. Their number varies between twenty and twenty-two. The following texts are generally listed among this group: 1. Advayataraka, 2. Amritanada, 3. Amritabindu, 4. Brahmavidya, 5. Darshana, 6. Dhyanabindu, 7. Hamsa, 8. Kshurika, 9. Maha Vakya, 10. Mandalabrahmana, 11. Nadabindu, 12. Pashupatabrahmana, 13. Shandilya, 14. Tejobindu, 15. Trjshjkhjbrahmana, 16. Va ra ha, 17. Yoga Chudamani, 18. Yogakundali, 19. Yogaraja, 20. Yogashikha, 21. Yogatattwa.

An exact time line for the upanishadic body of yogic literature is difficult to assign. The earliest Upanishads are certainly pre-Patanjali and were probably composed between the completion of the vedic hymns around 1000 BC and the Classical Yoga period which arose around 300 BC. There is no doubt that the Yoga Upanishads were composed later and belong to the post-Patanjali era because of the term ashtanga yoga, which is used in all of these texts. However, no references to Patanjali or his Yoga Sutras are found in any of these Upanishads. In the early Upanishads, like Brihadaranyaka and Chandogya, different vidyas or meditative disciplines are described, but nowhere were they codified as in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras.

Therefore, when inter-rivalries arose between the different philosophical systems, including the Classical Yoga system, the Vedantic thinkers must have felt the need to reveal these secret yogic doctrines in book form. This marks the emergence of the Yoga Upanishads. Although the time of compilation of these Upanishads is post-Patanjali, the vidyas or meditative disciplines contained within them are pre-Patanjali. The Yoga Upanishads were written by Vedantic scholars in order to show that these vidyas and related practices were not borrowed from Patanjali but were known and practiced from the ancient period.

Yoga Chudamani is the ‘Crown jewel of Yoga’. Chudamani is comprised of two words: chuda and mani. The word chuda means ‘crown’ and also refers to the tuft of hair which is worn at the top back of the head by the Brahmin priests. The word mani means jewel’. Yoga Chudamani is a unique and concise text comprised of one hundred and twenty-one mantras which deal with the practices of kundalini yoga as a means to attain the heights of Vedanta philosophy. The author and origins of this text are unknown, but it is connected with Sama Veda and probably dates back to the period between 700 and 1000 AD, when the ancient tantric tradition had regained popularity and was undergoing a period of revival. Yoga Chudamani is an ancient text in which no clear demarcation between the early systems of hatha yoga and kundalini yoga is found. Some scholars have, therefore, related the practical contents of this text with hatha yoga, whereas in context these practices are actually part of kundalini yoga, as they deal directly with the awakening of the pranas, nadis, chakras and kundalini. In early times, when the seers of the Upanishads were exposed to tantric theories and practice, kundalini yoga comprised all the practices of hatha yoga, except for the original six purifying practices, which were known as Shatkarma.

Hatha yoga was regarded as a physical and pranic purification system, whereas kundalini yoga was an esoteric system which involved the awakening of latent psychic energies only known and practiced by adepts. Gradually, over time, all the asana, pranayama, mudra and bandha components of kundalini yoga were absorbed into the system of hatha yoga, because of their physical nature. The relationship between hatha and kundalini yoga was often not recognized by later scholars and, therefore, the pranic and psychic emphasis of the practices was gradually lost. The Yoga Chudamani is, therefore, an important source of yogic literature which reminds us of the esoteric purpose of many kundalini yoga practices that have come to be regarded as hatha yoga.

The text begins with the six limbs of yoga: asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and samadhi, and then goes on to describe the six chakras, sixteen adharas (bases), three lakshyas (aims) and five vyomas (spaces) of yoga. This part of the text has a strong affinity with the science of Tantra and deals in depth with the lower chakras — mooladhara, swadhisthana and manipura, which are often not mentioned in other upanishadic or classical yogic text because of their relation with the instinctive nature. Special emphasis is given to the origin, location and function of the ten major nadis, or energy channels, including ida, pingala and sushumna. The prana vayus are also discussed in detail and in relation to jiva, the soul, and guna, the constituents of Prakriti. Next the text provides a description of ajapa gayatri, which is an older vedic and upanishadic vidya showing the harmonious integration of these two ancient systems.

Following these detailed discussions on yogic physiology and ajapa gayatri, the kundalini shakti is described along with its pathway, method of awakening and the necessary dietary and disciplinary observances. The text further deals with the theory of the red and white bindus, rajas and shukla, which represent the vital and conscious as well as the female and male forces. This is an important tantric concept which actually completes the theory of kundalini, but has been omitted from many of the later yogic texts due to its association with the sexual aspects of Tantra. The processes of retention and reversal of the bindus are clearly described here along with the relevant practices utilized in the different stages of this process. In this context several important mudras and bandhas, such as khechari, vajroli, maha mudra, jalandhara, moola and uddiyana, are described in detail.

At this point the text takes a more Vedantic turn and discusses the states of consciousness in relation to Pranava or Aum and how Brahman manifests in the form of Pranava. The meaning and symbology of Pranava are described in elaborate detail in accordance with the Vedantic system of philosophy and practice. This discussion further points out the relation between the three major deities, the three shaktis or powers, and the three lokas or dimensions of existence, with the three letters, ‘A’, ‘U’ and ‘M’, comprising the Aum mantra. The importance of Pranava as an uasana, or meditative discipline, which leads the practitioner into the subtle sphere of nada yoga, is further explained along with its benefits.

After this, the text again takes a different turn. Pranava is followed by discussions on the importance of the control and retention of Prana which result in longevity. In order to control and retain prana the practice of Pranayama is a necessity. Here the methods of Pranava Pranayama Chandra bheda surya bheda, nadi shodhana and kumbhaka are described along with their particular esoteric significance and forms of concentration which are not found in other yogic or upanishadic texts. Finally the text draws to a close with further discussion on the limbs of yoga their benefits and progression bringing it back again to the topic on which it had begun. Bu this time however the reader has become a participator in the yogic process and not just an intellectual observer.

Yoga Chudamani is a manual of higher sadhana which is meant for advanced and initiated aspirants. It delineates the ancient path of kundalini awakening in its original and pure form before the proliferation of more modern yogic literature. Mantra by mantra the texts points out the necessary means of transformation which lead to an experience of the deeper aspects of Yoga sadhana and its culmination in the expansion of consciousness and self realization. Thereby the text becomes a practical and experiential proof of the compatibility of Yoga and Vedanta or the tantric and Vedic systems of philosophy and practice.


Introduction   1
Mantra   Page
  Shanti mantra 26
1 Purpose of the Upanishad 28
2 Six limbs of yoga 30
3, 4a Physic physiology 34
4b, 5, 6a Knowledge of the Chakras 39
6b, 7, 8 Description of mooladhara 52
9,10 Description of manipura 55
11,12 Description of swadhisthana 57
13, 14a Agni Mandala 60
14b, 15 Origin of the nadis 62
16, 17 Ten major nadis 65
18, 19, 20 Location of the major nadis 67
21, 22a Ida, pingala and sushummna 69
22b, 23a Prana vayus 72
23b, 24 Location of the pancha vayus 73
25,26 Function of the upa-pranas 76
27 Jiva and prana 78
28 Jiva and ida/pingala 80
29 Jiva and guna 82
30, 31a Knower of yoga 84
31b, 32, 33 Ajapa gayatri 86
34,35 Knowledge of ajapa gayatri 89
36 Kundalini Shakti 92
37 Pathway of kundalini 96
38 Method of awakening 99
39 Rising of kundalini 101
40 Jalandhara bandha 103
41 Instructions for the practitioner 106
42 Three yogic disciplines 109
43 Dietary regulations 111
44 Bondage and liberation 114
45 Kundalini yoga practices 116
46 Practice of moola bandha 117
47 Benefits of moola bandha 119
48, 49 Uddiyana bandha 121
50, 51 Significance of jalandhara bandha 124
52 Practice of khechari mudra 127
53, 54, 55 Benefits of kechari mudra 130
56 Bindu 135
57, 58 Retention of bindu 137
59 Raising bindu by yoni mudra 141
60 White and red bindu 144
61 Merger of the two bindus 146
62 Brahma and Shakti 149
63 Divine body 151
64 Attainment of yoga 154
65 Maha mudra 156
66, 67 Maha mudra method 158
68 Maha mudra and digestive fire 166
69 Maha mudra removes disease 168
70 Maha mudra bestows great powers 170
71 Pranava 173
72 Dimensions of consciousness 177
73 Pranava 182
74 Aum matras 186
75, 76a Attributes of the aum matras 188
76b, 77 Creation and dissolution 192
78 Illumination 194
79 Anahad nada 196
80 Pranava and nada yoga 198
81 Qualities of 'A' matra 200
82,83 Hamsa 202
84 Jiva and atma 205
85 Lokas and deities of aum 207
86 Powers of aum 210
87 Aum gyatri 212
88 Benefits of the pranava 214
89 Control of prana 216
90 Retention of prana 219
91 Fear of death 221
92 Pranayama and longevity 223
93 Preparation of pranayama 225
94 Purification of nadis and chakras 228
95 Chandra bheda pranayama 230
96 Moon at bindu 232
97 Surya bheda pranayama 234
98 Nadi shodhana pranayama 236
99 Mastery of nadi shodhana 239
100 Method of retention 241
101, 102 Omkara pranayama 243
103 Ratio of the breath 245
104 Levels of pranayama 246
105 Effects of pranayama 248
106 Guidelines for pranayama 250
107 Naumukhi and shaktichalini 252
108 Pranayama and karma 255
109 Asana, pranayama and pratyahara 257
110 Dharana and samadhi 260
111, 112 Progression of yoga 262
113 Culmination of yoga 264
114 Union of prana and apana 267
115 Nada yoga 269
116 Pranayama prevents disease 272
117 Diseases managed by pranayama 274
118 Pranic control 276
119 Perfection in pranayama 278
120 Pratyahara 280
121 Mental purification 282
A: Sanskrit Text 287
B: Translation 299
Bibliography   313

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