THE WEAVING of the
CRYSTAL RIVER ~
SONGS of the
This is the area of symbolic imagery where the individual encounters the personal unconscious and later the collective unconscious, and deeper states. It is an area of mythic and religious symbolism expressed visually.Sometimes during one-pointed meditation, more than one veil is visible at a time. This creates a "layered" reality where the meditator can see a number of distinct layers with the closer images partially blocking the images that exist behind them. This layering principle can also be seen in the appearance of a personality as a layer on top of the soul which appears as light as in the "Angel Over Sun" image at the end of this section. The following illustrations all show this layering principle.
Some of the images are quick sketches, while others contain much detail and care. They attempt to capture some of the elements of unusual states of consciousness. As such, they are instructive and their purpose is to teach something about the nature of the mind as it encounters deeper realms of consciousness during meditation. Some images therefore include additional descriptive text.
Since the purpose of this section is educational as well as aesthetic, brief explanations of the types of meditation that result in this kind of imagery are also presented here.
The drawings are organized by themes such as meditation, creation and destruction, deities, and personal symbolic imagery.
Some of the illustrations below result from ekagrata or "one-pointed" meditation. When the mind becomes highly concentrated, focusing all of its attention on a single imaginary visual point for a certain period, a series of images will sometimes appear. The images are sometimes called "veils". Many times they appear as 3-dimensional images, but the meditator can transcend them by turning them 2-dimensional, and then cutting through them or peeling them away. These images sometimes also take on a two or 3-dimensional character in the form of mandalas when their symmetry become circular. In this case, ekagrata meditation becomes a form of mandala meditation.
In this kind of meditation, the mind appears to be composed of a seemingly infinite number of these veils or layers containing mental imagery. The object of "one-pointed" meditation is break through these veils one after another in order to penetrate deeper, initially into the personal unconscious and later into the collective unconscious and universal consciousness, where the symbols encountered become religious or archetypal in character. These veils of the mind hide or obscure a spiritual reality which is many times perceived as spiritual light behind or beyond them. Passing through them is like moving through a dense forest where the meditator uses his or her concentration as a kind of cutting tool to penetrate them one by one, in order to finally enter a clearing of bright spiritual sunlight.
In the process of penetrating these veils, many different kinds of things can occur. Some of the drawings below illustrate the types of events that can occur during this kind of meditation, and the kinds of imagery associated with such events.
A Mandala of Worship - Based on the Theme of St. Valentine's Day
3-Dimensional Mandala - Repeating Patterns With Four-way Symmetry Can Appear as a "Tunnel" to the Meditator
Tri-Faced Mandala - Three-way Symmetry Mandala
Vajrasattva Meditation 1 - Mother of Pearl Centered Vajrasattva Mandala
Vajrasattva Meditation 2 - Mandala with Black Lightning Center
Buddha Mandala - Mandala with Buddha Center
Since veil meditation requires much concentration, there is always a problem with distractions which result in loss of concentration. The next few images show the theme of confusion and distraction as it appears during this kind of meditation.
Layered Reality 1 - Layering of Imagery During Meditation
Layered Reality 2 - Layering of Imagery During Meditation
Saw-tooth Layers - Repeating Patterns in Layers During Meditation
Space Zipper - Starry Sky Opens in Meditation to Reveal a Realm of White Fire Beyond It
Angel Over Sun - Angel as a Thin Layer of Personality Covering Dual Suns in the Heart and Mind
Mental or meditative space has its own rules and a kind of security force. Some spaces require special passwords or knowledge before the meditator can enter them. Guardian Images will sometimes appear to distract the meditator or block entry by creating fear. Three images of guardian figures appear below.
Meditation on Deity - Multi-layered Reality of Meditation with Distractions
Confusion and Distraction - Image of Distraction During Meditation
Siren Waters - Beckoning Female Figures of Inertia, Distraction, or Destruction
Fierce Tiger - A Guardian Figure That Causes Fear to Distract the Meditator or Warn Him or Her of Danger
Meditation On Tara - Another Guardian Figure
Angel With Sword - Angel Guardian Figure With Living Fiery Sword
Another kind of meditation involves intentional identification with streams or flows of different kinds of visualized substance or energy. They may consist of either inner light or sound. In some cases, they are combinations of the two.
When the streams are made of light, the images below result from visualization of these visual streams of energy or substance. The "Woman of Water" and "White Fire Meditation" illustrations are examples of images that result from this inner identification with streams of substance (water) or light (white fire). This kind of meditation results from a shift in identity, from the meditator's normal body image or shape to identification with these inner energies or symbols. The "Heart Chakra Boats" image shows identification with a symbol (a Hindu heart chakra or wheel) which floats on the visualized substance (water).
The streams of sound are usually mantric currents and those can be accompanied by or produce visual imagery. Mantras are sacred words of power (i.e. OM or HUM) which are used as tools to change the meditator's state of consciousness. They are like vehicles which carry the soul from one space to another during meditation. Many of the visual images here are a by-product mantra meditation.
Woman of Water - Meditation on the Fluid Nature of Consciousness
White Fire Meditation - Meditation on a Stream of Fire Passing Through the Heart
Fire Dancer - Dancing Figure Experiencing the Inner Spiritual White Fire
Woman Made of Stars - Identification With Light During Meditation
Heart Chakra Boats - Meditation of Riding the Ocean of Consciousness on Symbolic Rafts
Shiva With Skulls - Meditation On Mantra BABA NAM KEVALAM
Tara Mantra Meditation - Purification Image Based On Tara Mantra
Mantra OM Image - Greek Figure Scatters the Silver Light of Creativity
Mantra OM NAMO BHAGAVATE VASUDEVAYA - Worshipers Entering the Heart of a Deity
The theme of the images below is contemplation of deities from different religious traditions. This kind of meditation results in both abstract symbolic imagery as well as figures of deities in their more traditional forms. One type of abstract imagery of deities is represented by the two mandalas of Vajrasattva seen earlier on this page. The "Heart of Kali" and "Vishnu and Shiva" images below are yet another form of abstract symbolic imagery representing deities.
Hindu Imagery:Buddhist Imagery:
Heart of Kali - Dark Image of the Heart of the Goddess
Vishnu and Shiva - The Bright and Black Suns
Dancing Kali - Figure With Weapons Dancing in a River of Sacrificial Blood
Linga Dancers - Figures Worshiping a Hindu Linga
Tribal Linga Image - Tribal Figure Inside Abstract LingaChristian Imagery:
Tribal Dakini 1 - Dancer Twirling Cape with the Mandalas of Many Worlds Printed On It
Tribal Dakini 2 - Second Dancer Twirling Cape with the Mandalas and Deities of Many Worlds Printed On It
Time Dakini - Dakini With Drums as Hour-glasses Whose Rhythms Mark Time
Dancing Dakini - Worshipers Climbing Stairs Before Dancing Figure
Dakini in Flames - Tantric Dakini Dances in the Burning Ground
Corpse Of Jesse - Fiery Christ Arises From Figure of Death
A common theme in meditation is how spiritual light, substance, or energy or spiritual beings create form and personality. These drawings show symbolically how different structures come into being. Whether the creative matrix is rainbow light, the emotion of compassion, a Buddha, a mystic spiral, or a growing flower, the sketches show how manifestation takes place in a spiritual context.
Spiritual light can also dissolve form and personality. The next drawing shows how the many categories of the mind symbolized by countless boxes are destroyed by the light of truth.
Buddha Creating Personality - Rainbow Manifestation of a Human Form
Flower Faces - Organic View of the Growth of Dramatic Roles in Personality Development
Spiral Sky - Material World Generated Out of Abstract Spiral Pattern
The Flowering Heart - Open Heart as Source of Organic Beauty
Buddha as Source of Organic Form - Unformed Substance Manifesting Before Buddha
Flowing Buddha Heart - River of Compassion Proceeding From Buddha in Heart Chakra
Adam Kadmon - Primordial Man of the Kabbala Grows Out Of The Biblical "Tree of Life"
Cosmic Egg - Fertility Image
These two images focus on the Buddhist concept of reincarnation and the painful cycle of rebirth.
Light Enters The Rational Mind - Light of Truth Pierces a Mind's Rational Categories
The next two images are associated with passages from the Bible. The first is a pun associating the cross of Jesus with the spinal column in man. The second connects a figure in Judaism with yogic imagery from the Hindu tradition.
Wheel of Death - The Buddhist Wheel of Rebirth with a Skeletal Figure of Death
Wheel of Passion and Emotion - Figure Bound to the Wheel Symbolizing the Agony of Rebirth
Meditative imagery often symbolizes the meditator's role in society or the universe, and the conflicts between the material and spiritual spheres. The last set of images reflects various roles and conflicts associated with the spiritual path.
Spinal Cross - Fusion of Vertebral Column and Cross of Jesus
Solomon and Kundalini - Solomon's Knowledge Comes From Being Bitten by Snakes
In meditation, there is sometimes imagery of different forms of consciousness. The following is a figure from a fairey race who is a "leaf encourager", or a being who helps the growth of plants.
Woman With Snakes - Image of the Female Power of Instinct
Wise Woman of the Depths - Blue Figure of Knowledge Opposes Structured Role Mandated by Society
Nun and Tara - Female Spiritual Ideals East Versus West
Reaching - Earth-bound Woman Reaches For Divine Child
Peaceful Buddha in Society - Contrast of Simplicity and Peace With Clutter and Noise
Woman With Circle - Ego Being Cast Aside During Meditation
Leaf Encourager - Fairy who influences the growth of plants