The importance of meditating is present in all religions
I am a hole in a flute
that the Christ‘s breath moves through,
listen to this music.
The knowledge of the six subtleties, Latifa-e-sitta, (Persian for psycho-spiritual centres which can lead to supersensory capacities) in the human body were kept secret in Islam in order to prevent it from getting into the wrong hands.
The names of these centres include Qalb (heart), Sir (secret), Sirr e Sir (secret of secret), Khafa (hidden), Akhfa (most hidden). The development of these six subtleties is a corner-stone of an Islamic way of life.
But how can we develop them if they are kept a secret, while certain leaders only push Sharia forward?
According to various Sanskrit texts dating back 3,000 years, a human body has thousands of nadis (Sanskrit for tube or pipe, Tamil for nerve or blood vessel), which connect the spiritual body to the physical body.
In Hindu philosophy, the focus is on three centres (ida, sympathetic nervous system; pingala, parasympathetic nervous system; and sushumna, the central channel along the spinal column).
Chakras are glands at which these nerves intensify. They include: (7) Pineal gland, (6) pituitary gland, (5) thyroid gland, (4) thymus gland, (3) pancreas, (2) gonads, kidneys, (1) adrenal glands.
In Judaism, the focus is on awakening seven of these glands, symbolized by the menorah. The Christmas Tree represents the colorful chakras in Christianity. From the ancient Egyptians to European mystical societies, chakra symoblism is real and can be mind-boggling.
These symbols are just pointers, however.
In the end, every person has their own experience. Once the chakras begin to awaken through movement (namaaz) and meditation, intutitive knowledge of how to proceed flows from within, rendering the symbols ornamental.
What is fascinating about Islam is its focus on one chakra: The heart. Specifically, how to open its two chambers, Qalb (in the left part of the chest) and Ruh (in the right part of the chest).
When Qalb is opened, one witnesses one’s own deeds. When Ruh is opened, one is connected to one’s immortal self (praan, soul, or bioplasmic energy). When these two chambers are opened together, one can then send its electrical pulses throughout the body to open other centers.
Having been steeped in Western thought for so long, biophysicist Candace Pert’s chart of glands and corresponding chakras may seem the most clear.
The consensus among all religions is the importance of meditating. Two powerful times for mediation include the time between Fajr and sunrise, and the time between Asr and sunset.
Soul receives from soul that knowledge, therefore not by book nor from tongue.
If knowledge of mysteries come after emptiness of mind, that is illumination of heart.
Shireen Pasha is Berlin Bureau Chief, Dhaka Tribune.