16 The Science of Breath & The Philosophy of The Tatwas

The Science of Breath & The Philosophy of The Tatwas

(Translated from the Sanskrit)


1. The goddess said: My Lord Mahadeva, the god of gods, be kind to me, and tell me the wisdom that comprehends everything.


2. How did the universe come out? How does it go on? How does it disappear? Tell me, O Lord, the philosophy of the universe.


Notes: “The god said”; “the goddess said”; “said the god”; “said the goddess”. The whole book is couched in the form of a dialogue between the god Siva and his wife Parvati. All the tantras have the same form. It is hardly consistent with facts to hold that Siva and Parvati were a human pair in some ancient period. The former is generally spoken of in this book as Iswara, the latter as Devi or Shakti. Judging from its method of composition, the book under notice does not seem to have been written by Siva. In the first place, there are several stanzas in the book that appear to be the composition of different authors, but in the present form by some compiler. Secondly, the author says in one place that he was going to describe certain experiments as he had seen them in the Sivagama (The Teaching of Siva). In the end of one ms., however, it si said that the book comprises the eighth chapter of Sivagama.

In the Kenopnishat the great commentator Shankaracharya interprets Uma Haimvait (another name of Parvati) as Brahma Vidya, the Divine Science or Theosophia. There, however, the goddess appears as a teacheress, and she might well be interpreted as Theosophia. That explanation will hardly hold good here. Here Siva and Parvati seem to be the male and female principles. They are the best acquainted with their own workings. The god, the male principle, explaining to Sakti, the female principle, the various modes in which the finer forces of nature imprint themselves upon the grosser planes, might be the symbol of the eternal impression of all thoughts and living organisms into the Sakti (the cooler matter rayi) by Siva, the hotter male principle.



3. Said the god: The universe came out of tatwa or the tatwas; it goes on by the instrumentality of the tatwas; it disappears in the tatwas; by the tatwas is known the nature of the universe.


Notes: In the original the singular number is often used to denote the common quality of the five tatwas, that by which each is known as such.

The universe comprehends all the manifestations with which we are familiar, either on the physical, the mental, or the psychic plane. All of them have come out of the tatwas. The tatwas are the forces that lie at the root of all these manifestations Creation, preservation, and destruction, or more strictly speaking, appearance, sustenance, and disappearance of the phenomena with which we are acquainted are tatwic changes of state.



4. Said the goddess: The Knowers of the tatwas have ascertained the tatwa to be the highest root; what, O God, is the nature of the tatwas? Throw light upon the tatwas.


5. Said the god: Unmanifested, formless, one giver of light is the great Power; from that appeared the soniferous ether (akasa); from that had birth the tangiferous ether.


Notes: This is the parabrahma of the Vedantins, the first change of state that stands at the top of evolution. This is the first positive phase of life. All the Upanishads concur in this. In the beginning all this was Sat (the positive phase of Brahma). From this state the five ethers (tatwas or mahabhutas as they are also called) come out by degrees. “From him came the Akasa and so on”, said the Upanishad. This state of parabrahma is called in the text “Unmanifested”. Manifestation for us only begins with the “Ego”, the sixth principle of our constitution; all beyond that is naturally unmanifested, “Formless”. This epithet is given because forms only show themselves when the tatwas and the two states of matter, the male and female, the hotter and the cooler, come into existence. As yet there is only one universal state of matter. Hence that state is also given the epithet One.

He is also called the Giver of Light. This light is the real life. It is this state that transmutes into the five ethers that form the atmosphere of the sixth principle of the universe.



6. From the tangiferous ether, the luminiferous ether, and from this the gustiferous ether; from thence was the birth of the odiferous ether. These are the five ethers and they have five-fold extension.


7. Of these the universe came out; by these it goes on; into these it disappears; even among these it shows itself again.



8. The body is made of the five tatwas; the five tatwas, O Fair One, exist therein in the subtle form; they are known by the learned who devote themselves to the tatwas.


Notes: The body, human as well as every other, is made of the five tatwas in their gross form. In this gross body play the five tatwas in their subtle form. They govern it physiologically, mentally, psychically and spiritually. These are therefore the four subtle forms of the tatwas.


9. On this account shall I speak of the rise of breath in the body; by knowing the nature of inspiration and expiration comes into being the knowledge of the three times.


Notes: Man can devote himself most easily to his own body. On this account the laws of the rise of the breath in the body have been described here.

Knowledge of the three times (the past, the present and the future) is nothing more than a scientific knowledge of the causes and effects of phenomena. Know the present tatwic state of things, know its antecedent and consequent states, and you have a knowledge of the three times.



10. This science of the rise of breath, the hidden of the hidden, the shower of the true Good, is a pearl on the head of the wise.


11. This knowledge is the subtle of the subtle; it is easily understood; it causes the belief of truth; it excites wonder in the world of unbelievers; it is the support among unskeptical people.


12. The science of the rise of breath is to be given to the calm, the pure, the virtuous, the firm and the grateful, single-minded devote of the guru.


13. It is not to be given to the vicious, the impure, the angry, the untruthful, the adulterer, and him who has wasted his substance.


14. Hear, thou goddess, the wisdom which is found in the body; omniscience is caused by it, if well understood.


15. In the swara are the Vedas and the shastras; in the swara the highest gandharva; in the swara are all the three worlds; the swara is the reflection of the parabrahma.


Notes: This stanza points to the difference between practical and theoretical occultism. The practice is highly auspicious, of course, but the theory too puts us on the right track, and therefore is somewhat auspicious.


19. The parts and the first accumulations of the universe were made by the swara, and the swara is visible as the great Power, the Creator, and the Destroyer.


Notes: For some reflections on this subject, the reader is referred to the Essay on Evolution.


20. A knowledge more secret than the science of Breath, wealth more useful than the science of Breath, a friend more true than the science of breath, was never seen or heard of.


21. An enemy is killed during the power of the breath, and also friends are brought together; wealth is got during the power of breath, and comfort and reputation during the same.


Notes: Every phenomenon is nothing more than a phase of tatwic motion.


22. On account of the force of breath one gets a female child or meets a king; by the force of breath are gods propitiated, and by the breath is a king in anyone’s power.

23. Locomotion is caused by the power of breath, and food too is taken by the power of breath; urine and faeces also are discharged during the power of breath.

24. All the Sastras and Purana , etc., beginning with the Vedas and the  Upanishads, contain no principle beyond the knowledge of swara (the breath).

25. All are names and forms. Among all these people wander mistaken. They are fools steeped in ignorance unless the tatwas are known.


Notes: All the phenomena of the universe are names and forms. All these names and forms live in the swara of parabrahma, or comparatively in the subtler tatwas. But there nothing is distinguishable. They are only distinguished as such when they are imprinted upon the grosser planes. The impression takes place by the instrumentality of Rayi, the cooler state of life-matter, which is only the shade of Prana, the original state. Hence the names and forms are all unreal.



26. This science of the rise of breath is the highest of all the high sciences; it is a flame for illuminating the mansion of the soul.


27. The knowledge cannot be imparted to this man or that man except in answer to a question; it is therefore to be known by one’s own exertions in the soul, by the soul, and soul alone.


Notes: This is the celebrated dictum, “Know thyself by thyself”, which differs from the Greek one in the addition of the last two words.


28. Neither the lunar day, nor the constellations, nor the solar day, nor planet, nor god; neither rain nor the Vyatipata, nor the conjunctions Vaidhrita, etc.


Notes: These are all of them the various phases of the five different tatwic states. They have a natural effect upon the terrestrial life. The effect differs with the thing influenced. The rays of the tatwic state of time will only be reflected into any organism if the reflecting surface is akin. The yogi who has power over his breath can put it into any tatwic state he chooses, and the antagonistic effect of time are simply thrown off.



29. Nor the bad conjunctions, goddess, ever have power; when one gets the pure power of swara, everything has good effect.


30. In the body are the Nadi having many forms and well extended; they ought to be known in the body by the wise, for the sake of knowledge.


31. Branching off from the root in the navel, 72,000 of them extend in the body.


Notes: The Yogi takes the navel to be the starting point of the system of Nadi. So says Patanjali, the great Yogi philosopher:

The systems of the body are known by concentration on the navel.”

The Vedantins take the heart to be the starting point of the system. The former assign as the reason, the existence in the navel of the Power Kundalini, the latter the existence in the heart of the cardiac soul (the Lingam atma), which is the real life of the gross body. This, however, is immaterial. We may begin wherever we like, if we only understand truly the location of the life-principle and its various manifestations.


32. In the navel is the Power Kundalini sleeping like a serpent; thence ten Nadi go upwards and ten downwards.


Notes: “The Power Kundalini”: This power sleeps in the developed organism. It is that power which draws in gross matter from the mother organism through the umbilical cord, and distributes it to the different places where the seminal Prana gives it form. When the child separates from the mother the Power goes to sleep. She is no more wanted now. The dimensions of the child depend upon the supplies of the Kundalini. It is said that it is possible to awake the goddess even in the undeveloped organism by certain practices of Yoga. When this is done the Yogi gets the power of lengthening or shortening the limbs.




33. Two and two of the Nadi go crosswise; they are thus twenty-four in number. The principal are the ten Nadi in which act the ten forces.


34. Crosswise, or upwards, or downwards, in them is manifested the prana all over the body. They are in the body in the shape of Chakras supporting all the manifestations of Prana.


35. Of all these, ten are principal; out of the ten, three are the highest: Ida, Pingala, and the Susumna.


36. Gandhari, Hastijihva, Pusha and Yashaswani; Alambusha, Kuhui, Sankhini, and also Damini.


37. Ida is in the left part, Pingala in the right, Susumna in the middle; Gandhari in the left eye.


38. In the right eye Hastijihva; in the right ear Pusha; Yashaswani in the left ear; in the mouth Alambusha.


39. Kuhu in the place of the generative organ; in the anus Shankhini. In this way one at each outlet stand the Nadi.


40. Ida, Pingala, and Susumna stand in the way of the Prana, these ten Nadi extend variously in the body.


Notes: For a dissertation on these three Nadi, the reader is referred to the articles on Prana. On a small scale, the right and left chambers of the heart and the right and left portions of the spinal column are the Pingala and Ida. The canal between these two is the Susumna. Taking the blood vessel system to be a mere reflection of the nervous system, the terminology might be applied to the nervous alone. It appears, however, that the Nadi of the Tantra comprehend both these systems. In the nervous system there is the real power, and this must be present everywhere where there is any manifestation of life.



41. These are the names of the Nadis. Now I give the names of the forces: (1) Prana, (2) Apana, (3) Samana, (4) Udana, and (5) Vyana .


42. (6) Naga, (7) Kurma, (8) Krikila, (9) Devadatta, and (10) Dhananjaya. In the chest lives always the prana; the apana in the circle of the anus.


43. The Samana in the circle of the navel, the Udana in the midst of the throat; the Vyana pervades all over the body. These are the ten principal forces.


44. The five beginning with the Prana have been described. The remaining five begin with Naga. Their names and places too I give:


45. The Naga is known in belching; the Kurma in the twinkling of the eye; the Krikila is known as the cause of hunger; the Devadatta is known in yawning.


46. The all-pervading Dhananjaya does not leave even the dead body. All these move in all the Nadis where they put on the appearance of life.


47. Let the wise man know the manifest movements of the individualized prana by the three Nadi: Ida, Pingala, and Susumna.


48. The Ida is to be known in the left half and the Pingala in the right.


49. The moon is placed in the Ida; the sun in the Pingala; the Susumna has the nature of Sambhu, and Sambhu is the self of Hansa [inspiration and expiration both].


50. Expiration is called Ha; inspiration is Sa; Ha is the Siva [the male], and Sa the Sakti [the female].


51. Appearing as Sakti, stands the moon, causing the left Nadi to flow; causing the right Nadi to flow, the sun appears as Sambhu [male].


52. Any charity given by the wise while the breath is in the left nostril, multiplies krore upon krore of times in this world.


53. Let the Yogi look into his face, with one mind and with attention, and thus let him know entirely the motion of the sun and the moon.


54. Let him meditate upon the tatwa when the prana is calm, never when it is disturbed; his desire will be fulfilled, he will have great benefit and victory.


55. To those men who practice, and thus always keep the sun and moon in proper order, knowledge of the past and the future becomes as easy as if they were in their hand.


56. In the left Nadi the appearance of the breath is that of the Amrita (Nectar); it is the great nourisher of the world. In the right, the motion-imparting portion, the world is always born.


Notes: A krore = 10 million. The Negative phase of Prana has the qualities of Amrita, the giver of eternal life. The negative matter, the moon, is cooler than the positive matter, the sun. The former is Rayi, the latter Prana. The former receives the impressions from the latter, and this plays the part of imparting impressions to that. The moon, therefore, is the real life of all names and forms. In her they live; she keeps them up. She is, therefore, the Amrita, the nectar of life. The right Nadi is, from the greater temperature it possesses, the imparter of names and forms, or briefly, the motion-imparting phase of life matter. It is the tendency of the sun to always cause changes in names and forms, and giving new impressions in the place of the old. Hence the sun is the great destroyer of forms. He is the father of the forms, but the real preserver is the moon.



57. The middle one, the susumna, moves very cruelly, and is very bad in all acts; everywhere in auspicious acts the left [Nadi] causes strength.


58. In going out the left is auspicious; in going in the right is auspicious; the moon must be known to be even, the sun odd.


59. The moon is female, the sun is male; the moon is fair, the sun is dark [as compared to the moon]. During the flow of the Nadi of the moon let calm acts be done.


60. During the flow of the Nadi of the sun harsh works are to be done; during the flow of the susumna are to be done acts resulting in the attainments of psychic powers and salvation.


61. In the bright fortnight the moon comes in first, in the dark one the sun; beginning from the first lunar day they rise one after the other in order, after three days each.


62. The moon and the sun have each the white [northward, upward] and the black [southward, downward] duration of 2-1/2 ghari. They flow in order during the 60 ghari of a day.


63. Then by a ghari each [24 minutes] the five tatwas flow. The days begin with the pratipat [the first lunar day]. When the order is reversed the effect is reversed.


64. In the bright fortnight the left [is powerful], in the dark the right; let the yogi with attention bring these into order, beginning with the first lunar day.


65. If the breath rises [at sunrise] by way of the moon, and sets in by that of the sun, it confers groups of good qualities; in the reverse, the reverse.


66. Let the moon flow the whole day through, and the sun the whole night; he who practices thus is no doubt a yogi.


67. The moon is checked by the sun, the sun by the moon; he who knows this practice, tramples in a moment over the three worlds.


68. During Thursdays, Fridays, Wednesdays and Mondays the left Nadi gives success in all acts, especially in the white fortnight.


69. During Sundays, Tuesdays and Saturdays the right Nadi gives success in all harsh acts, especially in the black fortnight.


70. During the five gharis each, the tatwas have their distinct rise in order, ghari by ghari.


71. Thus there are twelve changes during the day and night. The Taurus, Cancer, Virgo, Scorpio, Capricorn, and Pisces are in the moon [i.e., the breath rises in the left Nadi in these signs].


72. During Aries, Gemini, Leo, Libra, Sagittarius, and Aquarius the rise of the breath is in the right Nadi. From this good or bad is ascertained.


73. The sun is centered in the east and north, the moon in the west and south. Let none go west and south during the flow of the right Nadi.


74. Let none go east and north during the flow of the left Nadi; if anyone does go, he will have the fear of robbers and will not return.


75. The wise who desire good might not therefore go in these directions during these intervals; then there doubtlessly will be suffering and death.


76. When the moon flows during the bright fortnight, it is beneficial to the man; comfort is caused in mild deeds.


77. When the moon rises at the time of the rise of breath, and vice versa, quarrel and danger make appearance, and all good disappears.

The Wrong Swara


78. When in the morning the wrong breath takes its rise, that is the sun in place of the moon, and the moon in place of the sun, then:


79. During the first day the mind is confused; during the second loss of wealth; during the third they speak of motion; during the fourth the destruction of the desired [object].


80. During the fifth the destruction of worldly position; during the sixth the destruction of all objects; during the seventh disease and pain; during the eight, death.


81. When for these eight days, at all the three times, the breath is wrong, then the effect is simply bad. When there is something less there is some good.


82. When in the morning and the noon there is the moon, and in the evening the sun, then there is always success and benefit. The reverse gives pain.


83. Whenever the breath is in the right or the left Nadi, the journey will be successful if the right or the left, as the case may be, is the first step.


84. Going four steps [by the left step first] when the moon flows, and five steps [by the right step first] when the sun flows, causes success all over the three worlds.


85. One must go on an even number of steps during the moon, and an odd one during the sun, raising first the foot [belong to the] full Nadi.


86. If by the hand of that part of the body in which the breath might be flowing at the time of waking, one touches his face, he is successful in his desires.


87. In taking a thing from another, and in going out of the house, we take by the hand in whose corresponding half the Nadi flows, and begin motion by raising the same foot.


88. There will be no confusion, no quarrel, no piercing with thorns; he will come back comfortable and free from all accidents.


89. Those who desire success in their undertakings must talk with teachers, relations, kings, and ministers and others who can fulfill one’s desires, keeping them towards the full half of the body.


90. Those who desire success, benefit, and comfort must talk with enemies, thieves, creditors, and such others, keeping them towards the empty half of the body.


91. To distant countries one must go during the moon; to rather near countries during the sun.


92. Whatever of income, etc., and comings together, has been described before, comes to pass without doubt in the Nadis notices before.


93. Whatever has been said before to be the effect of the empty Nadi, is all in accordance with what has been said by the omniscient.


94. All transactions or dealings with bad men where there is enmity or deceit, angry lords or thieves, etc., are dangerous towards the full half of the body.


95. In going on a distant journey, the moon is auspicious, and gives ceaseless success in the aim; the sun is good in coming in, and in the beginning of any hasty work.


96. During the flow of the moon, poison is destroyed; during that of the sun, power is obtained over any body. During the susumna salvation is obtained. One power stands in three forms: the sun, the moon, and the susumna.


97. It might happen that when something is to be done, the breath is not rightly flowing, or conversely, when the breath is flowing as it ought to be, there is no occasion for the action to be done. How then is a man of business to follow the promptings of prana?


98. Auspicious or inauspicious acts are always to be done day and night. When need be the proper Nadi is to be set in motion.

The Ida


99. In those acts which are desired to have durable effect, in going on a distant journey, in entering an order of life (Ashrama) or a palace, in amassing wealth;


100. In sinking wells, ponds, tanks, etc, in erecting columns and idols, in buying utensils, in marriage, in having clothes, jewels and ornaments prepared;


101. In preparing cooling and nourishing divine medicines, in seeing one’s lord, in trade, in collection of grain;


102. In going into a new house, in taking charge of some office, in cultivation, in throwing the seed, in auspicious peace-making, in going out, the moon is auspicious.


103. In such acts as beginning to read, etc., in seeing relations… in virtue, in learning from some spiritual teacher, in rehearsing a Mantra;


104. In reading the aphorisms of the Science of Time, in bringing quadrupeds home, in the treatment of diseases, in calling upon masters;


105. In riding horses and elephants, in doing good to others, in making deposits;


106. In singing, in playing upon instruments, in thinking of the science of musical sounds, in entering any town, in coronation;


107. In disease, sorrow, dejection, fever, and swoon, in establishing relations with one’s people, in entering any town or village, in coronation;


108. In the adornment of their person by women, when the rain is coming, in the worship of the teacher, in preparing poisons, etc., O Fair One! The moon is auspicious.


109. Also such acts as the practice of Yoga give success in Ida. Even in Ida let one give up the akasa and taijas modifications of prana.


110. In day or in night all works are successful; in all auspicious works the flow of the moon is good.

The Pingala


111. In all harsh acts, in the reading and teaching of difficult sciences… in getting into a ship;


112. In all bad acts, in drinking, in rehearsing the Mantra of such a god as Bhairava, in administering poison to enemies;


113. In learning the Shastras, in going, in hunting, in the selling of animals, in the difficult collection of bricks, wood, stone and jewels, etc.;


114. In the practice of music, in the Yantras and tantras, in climbing a high place or mountain, in gambling, in theft, in the breaking of an elephant or a horse, in a carriage or otherwise.


115. In riding a new donkey, camel, or buffalo, or an elephant or horse, in crossing a stream, in medicine, in writing;


116. In athletic sports, in killing or producing confusion, in practicing the six Karmas, etc., in obtaining power of Yakshinis, Yakshas, Vetalas, Poisons and Bhutas, etc.;


117. In killing, in causing love… in enmity, in mesmerizing, causing one to do anything at bidding, in drawing anyone towards anything, in causing distress and confusion, in charity, and buying and selling.


118. In practicing with swords, in inimical battle, in amorous enjoyment, in seeking the king, in eating, in bathing, in mercantile negotiations, in harsh and hot deeds, the sun is auspicious.


119. Just after eating… in winning the favor of women, the sun is auspicious. The wise ought to sleep, too, during the flow of the sun breath.


120. All harsh acts, all those various acts which in their nature must be transitory and temporary, find success during the sun. There is no doubt in this.

The Susumna


121. When the breath moves one moment in the left and the other in the right, the [state of prana] too is known a susumna. It is the destroyer of acts.


Notes: It will be seen that in this section three phases of the Susumna have been noticed: (1) When the breath comes one moment out of one nostril and next out of the other; (2) When the breath at once flows out of both nostrils with equal force; (3) When the breath flows out of one nostril with greater force than it does out of the other. The first is called the Unequal state (Vishamabhava). The second and third are called the Vishuvat or Vishuva.



122. When the prana is in that Nadi the fires of death burn. It is called Vishuvat, the destroyer of all actions.


123. When both the Nadis, which ought to flow one after the other, then without doubt there is danger for him who is thus afflicted.


124. When it is at one moment in the right, the other moment in the left, it is called the unequal state. The effect is the reverse of what is desired, and so it ought to be known, O Fair One!


125. The wise call it Vishuvat when both the Nadis flow. Do neither harsh not mild acts at that time; both will be fruitless.


126. In life, in death, in asking questions, in income, or its absence, in success or its want, everywhere the reverse is the case during the flow of the Vishuvat. Remember then the Lord of the Universe.


127. The Iswara is to be remembered by acts such as the practice of Yoga; nothing else is to be done at that time by those who desire success, income and comfort.


128. Pronounce a curse or benediction when with the sun the Susumna flows slowly; it will all be useless.


129. When the unequal state takes rise, do not so much as think of journeying. Journeying during this state undoubtedly causes pain and death.


130. When the Nadi changes or the tatwa changes, nothing auspicious shall be done by way of charity, etc.


131. In the front, in the left, and above is the moon. On the back, on the right, and below is the sun. in this way the wise ought to know the distinction between the full and empty.


Notes: Two or more phases of conjunction have been noticed: (1) Sandhya Sandhi, and (2) Vedoveda.

According to some philosophers, these do not exist. These two are said to be but the names of the two foregoing ones. This, however, is not the thesis of the present writer. He holds that both these states exist separately.

The Sandhya Sandhi is that Susumna through which disappearance takes place into the higher matter beyond. The physiological Susumna is the reservoir of man’s potential physiological life. From that state takes its birth either the positive or the negative phase of life.

But the Susumna is the child of a higher phase of life. The positive and negative mental forces according to similar laws give birth to this potential pranamaya kosha. The world, as some writers have said, is the outcome of mental motion (Sankala, Meinah sphurana). The state of the conjunction of these two mental states is the Sandhya Sandhi. The same name seems to have been given to the higher susumna. When the two phases of mental matter are neutralized in the Susumna, the pranamaya kosha loses its vitality and disappears.

This is that state in which is thrown the reflection of the Higher Atma, and from whence it is possible for it to come into the mind.



132. The Messenger who is above, in front, or on the left, is in the way of the moon, and he who is below in the back and on the front, is in the way of the sun.


133. The conjunction, which has no beginning, is One, and is without [potential] nourishment or confusion – that through which disappearance takes place in the subtle matter beyond – is called Sandhya Sandhi.


134. Some say there is no separate Sandhya Sandhi, but the state in which the prana is in the Vishuvat is called Sandhya Sandhi.


135. There is no separate Vedoveda; it does not exist. That conjunction is called Vedoveda by which the highest Atma is known.

The Tatwas


136. Said the goddess: Great Lord! God of the gods! In thy mind is the great secret that gives salvation to the world; tell me all that.


137. Said the god: There is no God beyond the secret knowledge of breath; the Yogi who is devoted to the science of breath is the highest Yogi.


138. Creation takes place from the five tatwas; the tatwa disappears in tatwa; the five tatwas constitute the objects of the highest knowledge; beyond the five tatwas is the Formless.


139. The Prithivi, the Apas, the Taijas, the Vayu, and the Akasa are the five tatwas; everything is of the five tatwas. Revered is he who knows this.


140. In the beings of all the worlds the tatwas are the same all over; from the Satyaloka the arrangement of Nadi only differs.


Notes: See the Essay on the Tatwas. How everything, every possible phenomenon of the soul, the mind, theprana, and the gross matter is of the tatwas, the introductory Essays have tried to explain.

The nervous system is different in all the lokas. It has been said many a time that the tatwic rays flying in every direction from every point give birth to innumerable truti that are minimized pictures of the macrocosm. Now it will be easy to understand that these pictures are formed in different planes, which are differently inclined to the solar axis, and lie at different distances from the sun. Our planet is at a certain distance from the sun, and life is so arranged on this planet that the lunar and solar life-currents must have equal force if the organism is to be maintained. The tatwas also must be balanced. There might be other planes of life in which the respective powers of the two currents and the tatwas might be greater or less than they are on the earth. This difference will secure a difference in the arrangements of the Nadi, and also in their shape.

We experience this sort of thing even on our earth. Different animals and vegetables have different shapes. This is simply on account of the different truti stretching on different planes, differently inclined to the solar axis. Suppose for the sale of illustration that the following is the sphere of the macrocosmic prana:


Works on astrology assign different organs to these astral divisions, and for the purpose of illustration I shall assume these without further explanation. Thus we have on a larger scale:


These twelve regions comprehend the whole body in and out. Now suppose that there is a plane A-B having a certain inclination to the axis of the sun, S. From every point in the twelve regions rays fall in every truti of the plane A-B. Then there are other planes, C-D and E-F, etc.

It is evident that the rays falling on all these planes from the twelve regions will vary in relative strength and position on different planes. It is evident that on all these planes the different organs will differ in shape, in strength, and in relative position. This gives birth to more or less varying nervous systems in all the lokas, and the various shapes of the organisms of the earth.

As in evolution the necessities of the mind are changed, the pranamaya Koshas change their planes, and it is thus that they are changed on earth according to the occult theory of evolution.



141. In the left as well as the right there is the five-fold rise [of the tatwas]. The knowledge of the tatwas is eight-fold. Hear me, O Fair One: I shall tell thee.


142. The first is the number of the tatwas; the second the conjunction of breath; the third are the signs of the breath; the fourth the place of the tatwas;


143. The fifth is the color of the tatwas; the sixth is the prana itself; the seventh is their taste; the eighth is their mode of vibration.


144. Hear of the three-fold Prana: the Vishuvata, the Active [chara, the motor, sun], the Passive [achara or sthira, the receiver of motion, the moon] – in these eight forms. There is nothing, O Lotus-Faced Goddess, beyond the breath.


145. When by the effect of time the power of seeing does come it must be seen with great effort. The Yogi acts for the purpose of deceiving time.


Notes: “The Yogi acts for the purpose of deceiving time.” Time is the order of appearance of the various tatwic phases of a living organism. In man this order is regulated by his previous Karma. By the power of previous Karma, the human organism assumes different receptive states, and in accordance with the receptivity the tatwic influence of time – the solar prana – cause pains or enjoyments of different sorts.

By the practice of Yoga the Yogi masters the tatwic changes of his body. Time is cheated. If he pushes the germ of disease out of his body no epidemic will ever affect him.



146. Let a man shut his ears by his thumbs, his nostrils by the middle fingers, his mouth by the last fingers and those last but one, and his eyes by the remaining fingers.


147. In this state the five tatwas are gradually known as the yellow, the white, the red, the blue, and the spotted without any other distinct upadhi [differentia].


148. Looking into a mirror, let the breath be thrown upon it; thus let the wise man know the difference among the tatwas by their forms.


149. Quadrangular, semi-lunar, triangular, spherical, and spotted are respectively the forms of the five tatwas.


150. Thus the first, prithivi, flows midway; the second, apas, flows downward; the third, agni, flows upwards; the fourth, vayu, flows at acute angles; the akasa flows between every two.


151. The apas tatwa is white; the prithivi yellow; the agni red; the vayu sky-blue; the akasa foreshadows every color.


152. First of all flows the vayu tatwa; secondly, the taijas; thirdly, the prithivi; and fourthly, the apas.


153. Between the two shoulders is located agni; in the root of the navel vayu; in the knees the apas; in the feet the prithivi; in the head the akasa.


154. The prithivi tatwa is sweet; the apas astringent; the taijas pungent; the vayu acid; the akasa bitter.


155. The vayu flows eight fingers breadth; the agni four; the prithivi twelve; the apas sixteen.


156. The upward motion tends to death; the downward to calmness; the one at acute angles to restlessness; the middle one to endurance; the akasa is common to all.


157. During the flow of the prithivi are performed acts which are expected to live long; during the apas passive acts; during the taijas harsh acts; during the vayu, killing, etc.


158. Nothing ought to be done during the akasa except the practice of Yoga; all other acts will remain without their desired effect.


159. During the prithivi and the apas success is obtained ; death comes in the taijas; reduction in the vayu. The akasa is known by the tatwic philosophers to be altogether useless.


160. During the prithivi income is late; during the apas, immediate; loss comes into existence by the taijas and the vayu; akasa is altogether useless.


161. The prithivi tatwa is yellow, has slow motion, moves in the middle, comes in its flow up to the end of the sternum, is heavy in sound, has slight heat in temperature. It gives success in works that are expected to stay long.


162. The apas tatwa is white, has rapid motion, moves downwards, comes in its flow sixteen fingers downward [up to the navel], is heavy in sound, is cool in temperature.


163. The taijas tatwa is red, moves in whirls [avartagah], moves upwards, comes in its flow four fingers downwards [up to the end of the chin], is very high in temperature. It gives birth to harsh actions [actions which, so to speak, set one on fire].


164. The vayu tatwa is sky-blue, moves at acute angles, comes in flow eight fingers downward, is hot or cool in temperature. It gives success in those works that are transitory.


165. The akasa tatwa is the common surface of all, foreshadows the qualities of all the tatwas. It gives yoga to the yogi.


166. Yellow and quadrangular, sweet and moving in the middle, and the giver of enjoyment is the prithivi tatwa, which flows twelve fingers downwards.


167. White, semi-lunar, astringent, moving downwards, and the causer of benefit is the apas tatwa, which is sixteen fingers in flow.


168. Blue, spherical, acid, moving at acute angles, the giver of locomotion is the vayu tatwa, which is eight fingers in flow.


169. Foreshadowing all colors, of the shape of an ear, bitter in taste, moving everywhere through the giver of Moksha is the akasa tatwa, which is useless in all worldly works.


170. The prithivi and the apas are auspicious tatwas, the taijas is middling in its effects, the akasa and vayu are inauspicious and cause loss and death to mankind.


171. The apas tatwa is in the east; the prithivi in the west; the vayu in the north; the taijas in the south; the akasa in the middle corners.


172. When the prithivi and the apas are in the moon, and the agni in the sun, then there is doubtless success in mild and harsh acts respectively.


173. The prithivi causes income during the day, the apas during the night; death comes in the taijas; reduction in the vayu; the akasa sometimes burns.


174. In fitness for living, in success, in income, in cultivation [or: in enjoyment and growth], in amassing wealth, in understanding the meaning of the mantras, in questions about battle, in coming and going;


175. Benefit results during the apas tatwa; auspicious stay wherever it is during the prithivi; by the vayu they go away elsewhere; the akasa and the taijas cause loss and death.


176. In the prithivi comes the thought of roots [Mala]; in the apas and the vayu that of living things; in the taijas comes the thought of minerals; in the akasa there is void.


177. In the prithivi one thinks of beings of many feet; in the apas and vayu of bipeds; in the taijas of quadrupeds; in the akasa of the footless.


178. Mars is said to be the taijas, the Sun the prithivi, Saturn the apas, and the Rahu the vayu in the right Nadi.


179. The Moon is in the apas, Jupiter the prithivi, Mercury the vayu, and Venus the taijas in the left Nadi; for all acts doubtless.


Notes: The tatwic value of the planets described in these two verses seems to be the opinion of only a few. The opinion of the writer, which is also the opinion of the great astrologer Varahamchira, is expressed in stanza 181.



180. Jupiter is the prithivi; the Moon and Venus are the apas; the Sun and Mars are the taijas; the Dragon, the Ketu, and Saturn are Vayu; Mercury is the akasa.


181. Say during the prithivi the question that is about earthly things [roots, mala]; during the apas about life; during the taijas about minerals; during the akasa nothing.


182. Leaving the Sun and the Moon, when the breath goes to the Rahu know that it [prana] is in motion and desires another place.


183. (1) Pleasure, 92) growth, (3) affection, (4) playfulness, (5) success, (6) laughing, (7) in the prithivi and the apas; want of power in the organs, (8) fever, (9) trembling, (10) going out of one’s country in the taijas and vayu.


184. (11) Loss of the life, substance, (12) and death in the akasa – these twelve are the phases of the moon [i.e., the forms, etc., that the negative matter assumes]; they ought always to be known with pains by the wise.


Notes: These twelve are the phases of the moon. The moon here means the power that gives sustenance to names and forms. That power, the rayi, appears in twelve forms, according to tatwic changes. The flow of the left Nadi in its diurnal course is not meant here.



185. In the East, the West, the South, and the North, the tatwas, prithivi, etc., are powerful, so let it be said.


186. Fair One, the body must be known as made of the five Mahabhutas: the prithivi, the apas, the taijas, the vayu, and the akasa.


187. Bone, muscle, skin, Nadi and hair: these are the fivefold prithivi as laid down by the Brahmavidya [the divine science].


188. The semen, the female genital fluid, fat, urine and saliva: these are the fivefold apas as laid down by the Brahmavidya.


189. Hunger, thirst, sleep, light, drowsiness: these are the fivefold agni as laid down by the Brahmavidya.


190. Removing, walking, smelling, contraction and inflation: these are the fivefold vayu as laid down by the Brahmavidya.


191. Desire to have, desire to repel, shame, fear and forgetfulness: these are the fivefold akasa as laid down by the divine science.


192. The prithivi has five qualities, the apas four, the taijas three, the vayu two, the akasa one. This is a portion of tatwic knowledge.


193. The prithivi is 50 pala [pala = 1/3 ounce], the apas 40; the taijas 30; the vayu 20; the akasa 10.


194. In the prithivi income is delayed; in the apas it comes at once; in the vayu it is very little; in the agni even what is at hand is destroyed.


195. [The lunar mansions] (1) Dhanestha, (2) Rohini, (3) Jyestha, (4) Anaradha, (5) Srawana, (6) Abhiji, and (7) Uttarashadh: these are said to be the prithivi tatwa.


196. (1) Bharani, (2) Krithka, (3) Pushya, (4) Magha, (5) Purvaphalguni, (6) Purvabhadrapada, and (7) Swath: these are said to be the taijas tatwa.


197. (1) Purva shada, (2) Shelesha, (3) Mula, (4) Ardra, (5) Revati, (6) Uttara bhadrapada, and (7) Satabhisha: these are the apas tatwa, O Beloved!


198. (1) Vishakha, (2) Uttaragphalguni, (3) Hasta, (4) Chitra, (5) Punarvasu. (6) Ashwani, and (7) Mrigashirsha: these are the vayu tatwa.


199. Whatever good or bad the messenger asks about, standing towards the flowing Nadi, comes not to pass as he desires. In the empty Nadi it is the reverse.


200. Even when the Nadi is full, but the tatwa is not congenial, there is no success. The sun or the moon gives success only when combines with the congenial tatwa.


201. Rama got victory in an auspicious tatwa; so did Arjuna. The Kauravas were all killed in battle on account of the antagonistic tatwa.


202. By the acquired velocity of other births, or by the kindness of the guru, some men come to know the nature of the tatwas by a mind purified by habituation.

The Meditation of the Five Tatwas


203. Meditate upon the prithivi tatwa with L [or Lam] as its algebraic symbol, as being quadrangular, yellow, sweet-smelling, and conferring a color as pure as that of gold, freedom from disease and lightness of the body.


204. Mediate upon the apas tatwa with V [or Vam] as its algebraic symbol, as being semi-lunar, white as the moon, and giving endurance of hunger and thirst, etc., and producing a sensation similar to that of a plunge in water.


205. Meditate upon the taijas tatwa with R [or Ram] as the algebraic symbol, as being triangular, red, and giving the power of consuming a good deal of food and drink, and the endurance of burning heat.


206. Meditate upon the vayu tatwa with P [or Pam] as the algebraic symbol, as being spherical, sky-blue, and giving the power of going into the space, and flying like bird.


207. Meditate upon the akasa tatwa with H [or Ham] as the algebraic symbol, formless, foreshadowing many colors, and as giving the knowledge of the three times, and the powers Anima, etc.


208. Where there is a man who knows the science of breath, there can be no wealth better than him. It is known that by the Knowledge of breath one gets good fruit without much ado.

The Auspicious Victory


209. Great Lord! The god of gods, the giver of happiness, the science of the rise of breath is a very high science; how does it comprehend the Knowledge of the three times?


210. Said the god: Fair one! The knowledge of three times refers to three things, and nothing else: (1) Fortune, (2) Victory in battle, and (3) Good or bad [end of other actions].


211. On account of the tatwa any act is good or bad in effect; on account of the tatwa comes victory or discomfiture; on account of the tatwa comes scarcity and wealth. The tatwas are said to show themselves in these three states.


212. Said the goddess: Great Lord! The god of gods, the all-comprehending ocean of this world is the greatest friend and help-mate of men, he who causes the fulfillment of all his works?


213. Siva said: The Prana alone is the highest friend, the Prana is the greatest helpmate, Fair one! There is no friend better than Prana.


214. Said the goddess: How does the force of Prana stand in the body? What is the appearance of Prana in the body? How is the Prana known by the Yogi to be acting in the tatwas?


215. Siva said: In the city of the body the Prana is the Lord Protector; while going in, it is 10 fingers; while going out, 12.


Notes: This section refers to the human Aura. The subtle Prana surrounds the gross human body like a halo of light. The natural length from the body to the circumference of this halo is 12 fingers of the man whose Prana is measured. This length is affected during the ordinary course of inspiration and expiration. At the time of inspiration the length is reduced to 10 fingers; at the time of expiration it is restored to 12. During certain other actions too, the length varies. Thus, in walking the length of Prana becomes 24; in running, 42.

In cohabitation it becomes 65; in sleeping, 100. In eating and speaking, it becomes 18.

In ordinary men, the length is 12 fingers. The ordinary length is, however, reduced in extraordinary men. Thus, in those men who are free from desire, the length of Prana is reduced by one finger; it becomes 11. In men who are always pleasant, always hilarious, the length is 10 fingers. A poet has 9 fingers. A speaker has 8. A levitator has 6, and so on. See the following stanzas.



216. In walking it is 24 fingers, in running 42; in cohabitation 65; in sleeping 100 fingers.

217. The natural length of Prana, my goddess, is 12 fingers. In eating and speaking it stretches to 18 fingers.


218. When the Prana is reduced by one finger, freedom from desire is the result. Pleasure results when it is reduced by 2; poetical power when by 3;

219.Power of speech when by 4; second sight when by 5; levitation when by 6; great rapidity when by 7;

220. The eight siddhi when by 8; the nine niddhis when by 9; the ten figures when by 10, the loss of the shadow when by 11;

221. When it is reduced by 12 the inspiratory and expiratory motions drink of the fountain of immortality at the sun [the center of Prana]. When the prana fills the body up to the end of nails even, for whom else then is food?

222. Thus has been described the law of prana. It can be known by the teaching of a guru, not by millions of sciences and shastra.

223. If the moon does not set in by chance in the morning, and the sun in the evening, they do so respectively after midday and midnight.

The Battle

224. In distant warfare the moon is victorious; in near places the sun. When the foot is raised first in going belongs to the flowing Nadi, complete success is the result.

225. In beginning a journey, in marriage, in entering any town, etc., in all auspicious acts, the flow of the moon is good.

226. Putting the enemy’s army towards the empty Nadi, and one’s own towards the full, when the tatwa is congenial, one might conquer the whole world.

227. Let one give battle in the direction towards which the breath flows; victory is certain, even if Indra is in front.

228. If a man puts a question about battle, he will win if he is towards the flowing Nadi, lose if he is towards the other.

229. The prithivi tatwa points to wounds in the belly, the apas in the feet; the agni in the thighs; the vayu in the hands.

230. The akasa in the head. These fivefold wounds have been described in the Science of Breath.

231. He whose name has even letters wins, if he asks the question during the flow of the moon. He who has an odd number of letters in his name wins if he asks the question during the flow of the sun.

232. When the question is put during the moon there will be a peaceful termination; during the sun the fight must come.

233. During the prithivi tatwa, the fight will be equal. During the apas the result will be equal. During the taijasthere will be defeat. During the vayu and the akasa death will ensue.

234. When by some cause the flow of the breath is not clearly felt at the time of the question, let the wise man resort to the following expedient;

235. Sitting motionless let him have a flower thrown upon himself. The flower will fall on the full side. So let him give the answer.

236. Here or elsewhere the knower of the laws of breath is very powerful; who is more powerful than he?

237. Said the goddess: These are the laws of victory when men fight among themselves; how does victory come when they fight with Yama [the god of death]?

238. Let him meditate upon the Lord when the prana is calm; during the flow of the moon and then give up life when after that the two pranas coincide. He will have what he desires: great benefit and success.

239. The whole unmanifested world has come out of the unmanifested. That manifested world disappears in the unmanifested when the fact is known.

How To Produce Sexual Attachment

240. Said the goddess: Great Lord! Thou hast given a description of the battle among men, and with Death; tell me now how to produce attachment between the sexes.

241. Said the god: It has been said by the Yogis that if one places himself in the sphere of prana, by drawing the moon with the sun, the female will be eternally attached.


Notes: The sphere of Prana means the halo of this force which surrounds the gross body. At the time when the male prana has the pure color of the sun, and the female that of the moon, let the two halos be brought together. They are at that moment in their own element. As the two halos come together, they all exchange color. With a certain amount of natural satisfaction the individual sun will contract the habit of being satisfied by the individual female prana, and vice versa. This must of course be repeated for some time in order to give each of the two pranas the permanent color of the other. One more thing must be done. Any antagonistic colors must not be allowed to take even the slightest hold of either of these pranas. If this is done the two will learn to repel each other, and instead of attachment enmity will result.



242. The prana is caught by the prana if the prana does give himself up. When the prana goes in the place of the prana, short life is destroyed.


Notes: The first and third pranas in the verse mean either the male or the female, while the second means the reverse of either. It means that the male or female prana takes with its substance the female or male prana, if either of the latter allow. This permission must have two phases. There must be a willing mind, otherwise an antagonistic color will be introduced and consequent repulsion.

There must also be an active throwing out of any antagonistic colors that might be present in the prana, and also a shutting up of both mind and prana against any antagonistic influences.

When the male or female prana goes in the place of, i.e., is saturated in the female or male prana, life is at an end. The negative prana gives general strength to positive and vice versa. Strength causes long life. But in order to receive length of life there must be a complete saturation, which is impossible with the presence in any one of these pranas of any other antagonistic prana.


244.-249. Unknown



250. When in the beginning of the monthly period the males have the sun and the females the moon, even the barren woman gets a child.


251. In questions about the result of a pregnancy, a female child is born if the moon be flowing; a male during the flow of the sun. If both are flowing, the fetus will be destroyed.


252. At the time of this question, when the messenger is towards the moon, a female child is born; when towards the sun, a male child; when in the middle, a hermaphrodite. When he is towards the full Nadi a son is born.


253. The prithivi brings a son; the apas a son; in vayu comes a girl; in the taijas the fetus is destroyed; the akasa brings a hermaphrodite.


254. When the nostril is empty, nothing is born; when two tatwas join, twins are born. When one is passing into another, the fetus is destroyed. When this happens during the flow of the moon, the result is a female child; when the sun, a male.


255. During the vishuvu conjunction the fetus is destroyed, or a hermaphrodite is born. Fair One! I tell thee, the knower of the tatwas can know all this.


256. When at the time of conception the vayu tatwa flows, the child will be a sufferer; when the apas tatwa flows, the child will be happy and renowned. When the taijas tatwa flows, the fetus is destroyed, or the child is short-lived. When the prithivi tatwa flows, the child is wealthy and full of enjoyment.


257. During the apas tatwa the child that is conceived is always wealthy, happy, and full of enjoyment. During the akasa the fetus is destroyed.


258. During the prithivi a son is born, during the apas a girl. During other tatwas either the fetus is destroyed or the child is short-lived.


Notes: These two stanzas (253, 258) seem at first sight to record different truths. But they refer to different pranas: the one to the positive, the other to the negative.



259. Children are born when the sun goes into the moon and the moon goes into the sun. This can be easily known from a teacher, not by millions of sciences and shastras.


Notes: The female cells in the ovary are the moon. They have the capability of being impressed into any form by the male cells, the sun. The semen is hotter than the germ cells of the female. As the former act upon the latter, these expand. The former only act upon the latter when these present themselves to them; this is expressed by saying that the sun enters the moon, and the moon enters the sun. When both of these thus enter each other, the female matter that receives constant nourishment by the help of the Power KundAlini begins to expand along the lines stretched for it by the inherent power of the sun. In the semen lies hidden the future man, just as a tree in the seed. This is a veritable picture of the sun, or we might say a macrocosmic prana. The semen virile is, in fact, the mirror in which on account of tatwic affinity is reflected the individual truti, with which the reader must now be familiar. The semen thus is the reservoir of the whole pranamaya Kosha.


The Year


260. On the first lunar day of the white fortnight of the month of Chaitra, let the wise yogi see both the northward and southward journey of the sun by an analysis of the tatwas.


Notes: On this day begins the sanwat year of the era of King Vikramaditya.



261. If at the time of the rise of the moon, the prithivi, the apas, or the vayu tatwa is flowing, all kinds of grain will be plentiful.


262. The flow of the taijas and the akasa gives fearful famines. This is the nature of time. In this way is known the effect of time in the year, the month, and the day.


263. If the susumna, which is bad in all worldly concerns, is flowing, there will be confusion in the land, subversion of the kingdom, or fear thereof, epidemic, and all sorts of diseases.


264. When the sun passes into Aries, let the yogi meditate upon the breath and, finding out the prevalent tatwa, tell the world what will be the nature of the next year.


Notes: On this day the solar year begins. The tatwic color of the Universal Prana, the External one, is determined at any time by the positions of the sun and moon and by those of the planets, whose presence exercises a very potent influence upon the tatwic value of any moment. This tatwic value changes according to a universal law.

If at any time the apas tatwa is flowing, it can never abruptly change into the taijas, but must do so grade by grade. These atmospheric taijas run many minor courses. Hence it is possible, though extremely difficult and complicated, to calculate from the tatwic value of one moment the tatwic value of any future moment.

The living world is always affected by these tatwic changes. In the act of breathing nature has furnished a very exact and faithful scale for the measurement of tatwic changes. Hence the yogi, who can live in conformity with time and space, can foretell the future very easily. Ah! But how very difficult it is to live in perfect harmony with time and space!



265. The good aspect of the year, the month, and the day is known by the tatwas, prithivi, etc., and the bad one by the akasa and the vayu.


266. If the prithivi tatwa flows there will be plenty and prosperity in the kingdom, and the earth will be full of good crops; there will be much comfort and enjoyment.


267. If the apas tatwa flows there will be plenty of rain, plenty of grain, great comfort, and well-grown fields.


268. If the agni tatwa flows there will be famine, subversion, or fear thereof; there will be fearful epidemics and the least possible rain.


269. If the vayu tatwa flows when the sun goes into Aries, there will be confusion, accidents, famine, little rain, or the itis [six afflictions that distress crops: too much rain, etc.].


270. If the akasa tatwa flows when the sun goes into Aries, there will be want of grain and comfort.


271. When the full breath is in its own proper place, with its own proper tatwa, success of all sorts is the result. If the sun and the moon are the reverse, grain must be laid up [against a scarcity].


272. If the agni tatwa flows there will be inequality of prices; if akasa, there will be continuous scarcity. Let things be laid up then; there will be a rise in the prices two months thereafter.


273. When the breath is changing into the sun it gives birth to fearful diseases. When the akasa and the vayu are conjoined with the taijas, the earth will become the picture of hell.


Notes: The disturbance of tatwic balance is disease; hence every tatwa has its own diseases.


The Diseased


274. In the prithivi tatwa there is its own disease; in the apas the disease of the same tatwa; and so in the taijas, the vayu, and the akasa, similar and hereditary diseases.


Notes: When two men come together their pranas exchange color. It is on this account that you can measure from the momentary reflection in your own body the color of any other man that is near you. The present of every man is the father of is future. Hence you can predict the end of any disease, or the time of death.

All that has been ascertained to be true on these heads has been described in the various sections of this book.

The “messenger” in 275 is the man who comes to ask questions about anything.



275. When the messenger comes first towards the empty half of the body, and then towards the full half, he about whom the question is put will surely live, even if he is [apparently] lying in the swoon [of death].


276. If the question is put to the yogi while sitting in the same direction with the patient, he will live even though many a disease might have gathered strength in his body.


277. When the breath is in the right nostril, and the messenger speaks of his afflictions in piteous accents, the patient will live.


278. If the question is asked while holding the picture of the patient towards the prana and looking at it, the patient will live.


279. When during the flow of the sun or the moon, the yogi gets into a carriage and the question is put to him while there, the message will have success in his desire.


280. When at the time of the question the yogi sits upstairs while the patient is downstairs, he will certainly live. If the patient is upstairs, he will certainly go to the house of Yama [the god of death].


281. If at the time of the question the messenger is towards the empty nostril, he will have success. If the reverse is the case, the result too is the reverse.


282. When the patient is towards the moon and the asker towards the sun the patient will certainly die, even if he is surrounded by hundreds of physicians.


283. When the patient is towards the sun, and the asker towards the moon, then too the patient dies, even if Sambhu be his protector.


284. When one tatwa is out of its proper time, people are subdued by disease; when two are wrong, they cause misfortune to friends and relation; if it is out of place for two fortnights death is the result.

The Prediction of Death


285. In the beginning of a month, a fortnight, and a year, let the wise man try to find out the time of death from the movements of prana.


The lamp of the five tatwas receives its oil from the moon. Protect it from the solar fire; life will thereby become long and stationary.


If by mastering the flow of breath, the sun is kept in check, life is prolonged. Even solar time is cheated.


286. The moon falls from heaven giving the nectar of life to the lotuses of the body. By the constant practice of good actions and yoga one becomes immortal by the lunar nectar.


287. Make the sun flow during the day, the sun during the night. He who practices thus is doubtless a true yogi.


288. If for one night and day continuously the breath flows in one Nadi, full three years will bring death.


289. He whose breath flows by the Pingala two whole days and nights continuously has, as the knowers of the tatwas say, two years more to live.


290. If the moon flows continuously during the night and the sun during the day, death will come within six months.


291. When the sun flows altogether, and the moon is not altogether seen, death comes by a fortnight. So says the science of death.


292. He whose breath flows from one nostril for three nights continuously has, so say the wise, a year only to live.


293. Take a vessel of the Kansya alloy. Fill it with water, and see in it the reflection of the sun. If in the midst of the reflection is seen a hole, the seer will die within ten days. If the reflection is smoky, death will come the same day. If it is seen towards the south, West and North respectively, death will come within six, two and three months. Thus has been described the measure of life by the omniscient.


296. [If a man sees the figure of the messengers of death he is sure to die]. The messenger of death has red or reddish clothes, matted hair, diseased teeth, oil-besmeared body, a weeping and red-hot face, a body besmeared with ashes, flying flames of fire, having heavy long rods, and standing towards the empty Nadi.


297. When the skin is cool but the inside is hot, death must come within a month.


298. When a man changes suddenly and unaccountably from good habits to bad, or from bad habits to good, he is sure to die.


299. He whose breath that comes out of the nose is cool, but that which comes out of the mouth is hot like fire, is sure to die of great heat.


300. He who sees hideous figures, and bright light without making out the flame, lives not for nine months.


301. He who suddenly begins to feel heavy bodies light, and light bodies heavy, and he who being dark in color begins in disease to look gold-colored, must die!


302. He whose hands, chest, and feet become at once dry after bathing has not ten nights to live.


303. He who becomes dim of sight, and cannot see his face in the pupil of another’s eye must doubtless die.


304. Now I shall tell thee something about the shady Figure [Chya Purusha]. Knowing this, man very soon becomes the knower of the three times.


305. I shall speak of those experiments by means of which even distant death is known. I shall describe all these in accordance with the Sivagama.


306. Going to a lonely place and standing with the back towards the sun let a man look with attention into the neck of the shade he throws on the ground.


307. Let him see this for as long a time as he can calmly repeat the words: “Om Kram parabrahman namah” for 108 times. Then let him look up into the sky. He will thus see Shankara [the figure of a being capable of appearing in many colors].


308. By doing this for six months, the yogi becomes the lord of those who walk on earth; by two years he becomes absolutely independent and his own master.


309. He obtains the knowledge of the three times and great bliss. There is nothing impossible for the constant practice of Yoga.


310. The Yogi who sees this figure in the clear heavens having a dark color, dies within six months.


311. When it is yellow there is fear of disease; when it is red there will be loss; when it has many colors there will be great confusion and dejection.


312. If the figure be wanting in feet, shanks, abdomen and the right arm, a relation is sure to die.


313. If the left arm is wanting, the wife will die; when the chest and the right arm is wanting, death and destruction will come.


314. When the feces and gas escape at once, the man is sure to die in ten days.


315. When the moon flows altogether, and the sun is not seen at all, death comes surely within a month.


316. Those whose death is near cease to see the Arandhati, the Druhva, the steps of Vishnu, and the circle of the mothers as they are pointed out to them.


317. The Arundhati is the tongue; the Dhruva the tip of the nose; the eyebrows are the steps of Vishnu; the pupil of the eye is the circle of the mothers.


318. The man who ceases to see the eyebrows dies within nine days; he who ceases to see the pupil of the eye dies within five days; he who ceases to see the nose dies within three days; he who ceases to see the tongue dies within one day.


319. The pupil of the eye is seen by pressing the eye near the nose.

The Nadis


320. The Ida is also technically called Ganga; the Pingala, Yamuna; the Susumna, Saraswati; the conjunction is called Prayaga.


321. Let the Yogi sit in the posture called padmasana, and perform pranayama.


322. The Yogi must know the puraka, the rechaka, and the third Kumbhaka for obtaining power over the body.


323. The puraka causes growth and nourishment, and equalizes the humors; the Kumbhaka causes stability, and increases the security of life.


324. The Rechaka takes away all the sins. He who practices this reaches the state of yoga.


325. In the Kumbhaka hold the air in as much as possible; let it go out by the moon and in by the sun.


326. The sun drinks the moon, the moon drinks the sun; by saturating one with the other, one may live till the moon and the planets.


327. The Nadi flows in one’s own body. Have power over that; if it is not let go through the mouth or nose, one becomes a young man.


328. When the mouth, nose, eyes and ears are stopped by the fingers, the tatwas begin to take their rise before the eyes.


329. He who knows their color, their motion, their taste, their places, and their signs, becomes in this world equal to the god Rudra.


330. He who knows all this, and reads it always, is freed from all pain and gets what he desires.


331. He who has the knowledge of breath in his head, has fortune at his feet.


332. Like the One in the Vedas, and the sun in the Universe, is the knower of the Science of Breath to be honored. He who knows the Science of Breath and the Philosophy of the Tatwas, knows not even millions of elixirs to be equal to it.


333.There is nothing in the world that will release you of the debt of the man who gives you the knowledge of the word [Om] and of breath.


334. Sitting in his own place, with measured food, and sleep, let the Yogi meditate upon the highest Atma [whose reflection the Breath is]. Whatever he says will come to pass.