HARMONY is the least known but the most indispensable factor of health and mental serenity; while discord is the be-ginning of all disease, discomfort, and all the family of disorganizing elements; the names of which, you may have noticed, all begin with the significant prefix dis.
Harmony, therefore, is the law of order, the normal, natural condition of every atom and its component spirillae (for which particles science is reviving the name ” corpuscles “) within the crowning work of creation, the body-beautiful of the human creature, as well as in the visible and invisible world about us; and discord is the law of disorder. To live in tune with the Universe, we must live in harmony with its laws; and ” THE LAW OF THE RHYTHMIC BREATH” gives us the master-key to these laws. Studied, understood, and applied, no other road leads so swiftly to spiritual consciousness; and at the same time the Law reconciles science and religion as never before. For generations men read Buddha’s declaration that ignorance was ” the root of the huge poison-tree of mundane existence with its trunk of pain; ” but, ignoring his “Wheel of the Law” in the body, they have sought for knowledge far-afield, everywhere but within in self-study and self-examination. And alas ! so far have men depreciated the higher self in man which differentiates him from the lower animals, that they have thought to arrive at accurate knowledge of his physical characteristics by submitting helpless brutes to the tortures of vivisection.
When the scientist understands the Tattvic Law of the Universe, which opens to him the miracle-world of Nature’s forces, he will realize what awful powers of discord he thus sets in motion, powers which, by an immutable law, must return, like a boomerang, upon himself ! Then, indeed, will the helpless dumb creatures be freed from man’s reign of terrorism.
When we speak of harmony as inseparable from health and all joy in living and doing, we are not dealing with an abstract quality but with a concrete principle of motion underlying the ceaseless activities, visible and invisible, of our Universe a macrocosm in which there is no ” dead matter,” but life, life everywhere. To the minutest particle, all is vibrating with ceaseless energy in that mysterious, invisible realm which men are beginning to penetrate by means of cunning instruments devised with infinite patience and skill to supplement the perceptions of the physical senses. Science is creeping close to the long-hidden truths.
One of the recent discoveries is that ” This motion is continually changing from one velocity to another.” This is the source of that beautiful diversity in unity which keeps us wondering at the infinite variety of Nature’s marvelous works, and it is caused by the characteristic vibrations of the Tattvas, which are differentiated by form and color, and whose energies can thus be analyzed and recognized on all the planes of their activities throughout the Universe. It is by this means that Hindu physiology has traced their power, office, and effect in the human economy.
We are all familiar with the fact indeed, every school boy knows it that our bodies are said to be composed of the four elements : viz., air, fire, water, and earth; yet how many ever think of it as anything but a figurative expression? Now, I am going to show you that it is a statement de facto; but how much it shall signify to you, dear reader, depends upon yourself. You must think, or it will be barren of results. This caution is based upon experience; for many per-sons have learned this elemental distinction concerning the nature of the Tattvas, and, not applying the knowledge, have gone no further, failing as utterly to grasp its deep significance as in the old familiar statement.
Bearing in mind the previous explanation of the positive and negative breath-currents, flowing in regular alternation through the right and left nostrils respectively, and their differentiation into the five Tattvas, we proceed now to an examination of the character and properties of the separate Tattvas, and the effect of their action upon the physical, Aor gross, body.
Akâsha is the most refined or tenuous of the elements, and on the gross plane of the physical body is correctly classified as ether. Don’t let it confuse you when all the Tattvas are referred to as ethers, for on their subtle planes of activity they are so tenuous that wanting a strictly scientific nomenclature, we must call the others also ethers. They never, however, lose their distinctive qualities; always, even in the closest union one with another, they retain these characteristics of form, color, and action which betray the presence of the vibration, although every element restricts, and is modified by, the vibrations of the elements with which it is combined. Hence, there are manifold permutations in form and color, producing variety,
Akâsha is circular or oblong in form, and gives this shape to the orifice of the ear, the organ of hearing, whose perceptions its property of sound stimulates. It is represented as a circle with a single dot in the center and also as a dotted circle; for matter subjected to its influence gyrates with extreme velocity in tiny points that chase one another within the circle. The positive phase of Akasha is colorless, sometimes described as white, but it is a white pulsating with light; and its negatives phase is indigo, so dark that to some eyes it appears black. In this condition it holds potentially all the other Tattvas or elements; and it is the medium space – in every state of mat-ter which propagates sound.
The study of Akasha discloses the secret of the mysterious and varied effects of sound upon all living creatures ; for every vibration as it passes through the ” subtle sound-granules of space ” (space and sound being considered interchange-able terms, so closely associated are they) creates its own sound or tone, and registers its effect upon human nerves even when beyond the range of sense-perception.
Thus sound, with its inseparable associate rhythm, is ever building or disintegrating; and is a powerful force that man has urgent need to understand and learn to control, and use with intelligence. Harmonious sounds are upbuilding and life-giving, therefore constructive; while all sounds which we class as noise are disintegrating in pro-portion to the dissonance and broken rhythm of their crashing and grinding. The suffering such warring turmoil inflicts upon sensitive people is very real; and only more subtle because less perceptible like the drops of water that wear away a stone is the effect upon those less conscious of the disturbance.
The vibrations of Yâyu, or tangiferous ether the air are spherical in form, and its motion is the duplicating of spheres, or groups of spheres. The particular property of Vâyu is locomotion, and it stimulates, or gives birth to, the sense of touch; therefore we find its physical influence pre-dominates in the skin which it farms and nourishes. Motion in any part of the body is due to the Vâyu centers of that part. It is naturally prevalent in the lungs (or ought to be!) and is regnant in the hands.
The color of Vâyu is usually described as blue, but also sometimes as green. I believe the reconciliation of the disagreement to be that blue is the negative phase, and green the positive. In per-mutation with other Tattvas where Yâyu pre-dominates we have green-blue, and blue-green, and yellow-blue. When green is reflected upward that is, the activity is upward instead of downwardit becomes a mirror for the higher force, absorbs the higher vibrations and is then no longer green but its negative blue. All its effects in combination with other Tattvas corroborate this conclusion. As we progress to the evolution of the Tattvas this will be clearer.
Tejas is the luminiferous ether and the fire element in the physical body, the agent which keeps up internal heat and maintains the body’s normal temperature. It stimulates the sense of sight, is therefore regnant in the optic nerves, and must be recognized in the form of light as well as heat. Tejas has the property of expansion, and causes the swelling in inflammatory disorders; and, of course, it is prevalent to great excess in fevers. Its form is that of a triangle, its vibrations moving at right angles; hence causing friction which generates heat; and its color is red.
Apas, the gustiferous ether, is the water element, and in its purest, most subtle state is white or violet in color. It stimulates the sense of taste and possesses the property of contraction. It pre-dominates in the tongue, both in its office as a sensuous and as an active organ, and its semi-lunar (or wave-like) vibrations are the chief motive-power in the production of voice.
The combination of Apas with other Tattvas in manifold permutations produces the exquisite variety in vocal tones, gives to them their color, for every tone has a distinctive color, and creates that subtle element which sways the emotions. It is the color of the tone, which is a manifestation of its form, that affects the nerves, sympathetically or antagonistically; and a wide field for the scientifically accurate application of the therapeutic value of music is open to the earnest student of the Tattvas. The discipline and culture of voice-production in speech itself are thus recognized as of the highest importance.
Wherever water runs over sand, which it throws’ into waving forms, it furnishes a constant object-lesson on the semi-lunar form of Apas vibrations. The very name wave is a symbol of the curving motion of water.
Last, but not least in this terrestrial life, comes Prithivi, or odoriferous ether, the earth. It is the vibration which excites the sense of smell, and its characteristic properties are resistance and cohesion. Prithivi is quadrangular in form and, as do all the Tattvas, impresses its form upon the nerve ganglia in which it is predominant. Its color is yellow, and it is the disorder of the earth vibration which causes liver troubles, as the yellow tinge of the skin betrays.
The Tattvas manifest their power in two ways, gross and subtle; our bodies are the gross manifestations of their activity, and through these, animating them and giving them all life, motion, and force, play unceasingly the subtle Tattvas, which govern the body physiologically, mentally, psychically, and spiritually, in an ever refining gradation of force, and substance clothing that force. Every nerve center, or plexus, is governed by a particular Tattva; that is, is the seat of its special manifestation; thus, though all the Tattvas are present, there is a ruling one which is always in health predominant.
Now, I neither ask nor wish that anyone should believe any of these statements blindly. Don’t accept them because I say they are so. I do ask that all who wish for freedom of mind and body, for health based upon the serenity and confidence that come from knowing the exact nature and action of the agents you are employing to obtain that blessing I ask you to make the whole subject the matter of serious study and thought.
Reason it out for yourselves. Look first within, in the calm meditation that quiets the troops of idle thoughts which make havoc of our energies and are a never ceasing source of discord; and when you discover that the very name Tejas is potent to raise your temperature if you send it with commanding thought to its centers of action (see Chapter IX), you will begin to realize the truth. With the first glimmer of this confidence you will find your attention wonderfully sharpened to the relations of external objects, and no moment of thought on the subject will be fruit-less.
In India, nothing is ever told to the student of Occult mysteries which can be learned through study and thought, for speculating upon these hid-den relations of the natural forces furnishes the wings upon which intuition takes its flight straight to the cause. In this Western world, however, where the art of thinking is less understood, the student needs some guidance, but the quicker he can stand on his own feet the better. In the physical world about us, you must be prepared to recognize the dominant Tattva or the combination of elements in natural objects by the colors. Thus, all the vegetable kingdom germinates in Mother Earth Prithivi, which is yellow, and draws nourishment in proportion as it sends its roots deep into her bosom ; while it breaks into leaf and blossom and fruit in the ambient, elastic airVâyu, blue; and from the yellow and blue of its earth and air-progenitors is evolved the grateful, refreshing green.
The Tattvas are the artists who grave the wonderful geometrical lines which can be studied in sea-shells. Cross-sections of the shells of nummulites (see Standard Dictionary) show Prithivi vibrations. The skin of a rattle-snake is a most interesting study in the proof of the Tattvic Law. This creature that hugs the earth and lives in it, is striped down its back with cubes placed point to point, the outer scales of which are yellow. Tejas is the next most prominent influence, giving sharp points to the scales, and its color is seen in the red-dish brown of the darkest scales. Every scale has a mid-rib dividing the positive from the negative. In snow crystals every Tattvic vibration can be traced; and, when examined separately, within their dazzling whiteness it is found that all the colors of the spectrum are held latently.
Significant corroboration of Tantrik teaching with regard to the structural effects everywhere in the body of the varied Tattvic activities, is found in Bain’s description of the nerves. The blue-white matter is in nerve threads composed of bundles of microscopical fibres, of which it is estimated as many as 1s,000 to 100,000 are united in a single nerve. The grey-red nerve substance is a mixture of these fibres and neurons or cells ” of various shapes, round, oval, pear-shaped, tailed, and star-like, or radiated” (Mind and Body).
In the Cosmopolitan for September, 1905, is an interesting article, ” Artificial Creation of Life,” by Garrett P. Serviss, the illustrations in which furnish an admirable study of the Tattvas. The article explains the experiments of Prof. Jacques Loeb, of the University of California, which have aroused deep interest in the scientific world.
If a copy of the magazine be accessible, notice first the five points of the starfish, which correspond with the five Tattvas, as do the fingers and toes of our bodies. Turn next to the large illustration of Eggs of the Sea-urchin; then observe a, ” Beginning of segmentation,” and b, ” Second step.” You will see that the development is by pairs or couples. These are the positive and negative atoms, which acting upon each other evolve every succeeding step.
In a, Akâsha prevails ; b, Vâyu; c, intermediate, Akâsha predominant, with Vâyu and beginning of Tejas; d, all the preceding with the addition of a strong vibration from Apas, the water element, in crescentlike waves; e, Tejas is predominant, in which state this artificial creature is said to ” starve to death.”
Now the reasonable conjecture is that the absence of Prithivi vibrations is the cause of the cessation of evolution; and I have had the satisfaction, since making the above notes, of finding the following corroboration of my conjecture : In one of the Upanishads the division of the ” five-fold ” elements composing the physical body is given according to their use. Water and earth are said to be the food; fire and air, the feeders, and ether, the bowl into which all are poured.”
It would simplify and facilitate the investigations of modern scientists beyond average comprehension if they would accept as the ground or basis of their researches and experiments the Tattvic Law of the Universe. Thus, radium in whatever aspect of its activity is a form of Tejas. Every manifestation of heat or light is caused by Tejas vibrations. Radium is the highest vibration of the solar current of Tejas yet discovered by man; and in February, 1905, Professor Rutherford, of McGill University, announced as a revolutionizing theory the fact that the internal heat of the earth is from radium.
To the ” knower ” of the Tattvas this is the only possible conjecture, for the core of the earth is its solar plexus, and must vibrate with the most subtle form of Tejas, sun rays of a power inconceivable before the discovery of radium.
As I weave these notes made seven months ago into this chapter, the morning papers chronicle from faraway Johannesburg, South Africa, Prof. George Howard Darwin’s speculations upon ” the probability of radio-activity in the sun, which, if proved, will subvert all the scientific theories of its constitution, and of the age of the existing solar system based thereon.”
The life-current is more subtle than radio-activity, and it depends upon ourselves to how high power we shall raise it. Never forget that ” “Breath is the beam on which the whole house of the body rests.” If you wish to acquire the ability to apply the Law and use the ” master-key,” be diligent in the practice of the breathing exercise given in the first chapter. Make the slight change of holding the breath for a longer interval not to exceed the inhalation and fix the thought upon following the vital current down the spine; then, while holding the breath, upon the sacral plexus, and follow it upward during ex-halation. The length of time must be decided by physical sensations. No slightest discomfort should be felt. Restoration of the balance of the Tattvas gives us rose-colored spectacles and all the energy needed to meet life’s demands even tough they be exacting. The thought ministrations of Christian Science, Mental Healing, and Faith Cure, which are so ” Winged with Power,” employ the same force the only on and are all manifestations of the Tattvic law for every thought excites a Tattvic vibration, just as does the movement of a finger, and the calm fixity and intensity of the thought are the measure of its force.
The throb of the great heart of the universe proceeds from the unknowable primary cause, Di-vine Spirit, back of all life, and its perpetual source. Its dynamo holds the secret of perpetual motion, fed by the positive and negative currents of Divine Breath, the thought active and thought quiescent or receptive of Him who spake the first Word and declared, “It was very good.” And the “Harmony of the Spheres” is no poetic imagery, but describes the rhythmic movements, vibrant with melody, of the Great Breath after the Tattvas, by interaction had been evolved, one after another.