Manipura

Then, if you pass through that danger you reach the next center, manipura, which means the fullness of jewels.  It is the fire centre, really the place where the sun rises. The sun now appears; the first light comes after the baptism. 

One sees all (that) very beautifully in the Catholic rite of baptism when the godfather holds the child and the priest approaches with the burning candle and says: Dono tibi lucem eternam” (I give thee the eternal light) – which means, I give you relatedness to the sun, to the God.  You receive the immortal soul, which you did not possess before; you are then a “twice-born.”  Christ receives his mission and the spirit of God in the Jordan.  He is only a Christus after baptism because Christus meant the anointed one.  He too is “twice-born.”  He is now above the ordinary mortal that he was as Jesus, the son of a carpenter.  He is now a Christus, a nonpersonal or symbolic personality, no longer a mere person belonging to this or that family.  He belongs to the whole world, and in his life it becomes evident that this is a very much more important role than if he were the son of Joseph and Mary.

So Manipura is the center of the identification with the god, where one becomes part of the divine substance, having an immortal soul.  You are already part of that which is no longer in time, in three-dimensional space; you belong now to a fourth-dimensional order of things where time is an extension, where space does not exist and time is not, where there is only infinite duration – eternity. 

This is a worldwide and ancient symbolism, not only in the Christian baptism and the initiation in the Isis mysteries.  For instance, in the religious symbolism of ancient Egypt, the dead Pharaoh goes to the underworld and embarks in the ship of the sun.  You see, to approach divinity means the escape from the futility of the personal existence and the achieving of the eternal existence, the escape to a nontemporal form of existence.  The Pharaoh climbs into the sun bark and travels through the night and conquers the serpent, and then rises again with the god, and is riding over the heavens for all eternity. 

So this third center is rightly called the fullness of jewels. 

Dr. Reichstein: But is not manipura a symbol of fire, of things burned?

Dr. Jung: Well, it is not just a destructive symbol; it means more a source of energy.  But you are quite right – there is always a note of destruction when one speaks of fire; the mere mention of fire is enough to rouse the idea of destruction.  And there you touch upon that fear that causes abstraction; we easily get abstract when we do not want to touch a thing that is too hot. 

So it is just that – you get into the world of fire, where things become red-hot.  After baptism you get right into hell – that is the enantiodromia. 

And now comes the paradox of the East: it is also the fullness of jewels.  But what is passion, what are emotions?  There is the source of fire, there is the fullness of energy.  A man who is not on fire is nothing:  he is ridiculous, he is two-dimensional.  He must be on fire even if he does make a fool of himself.  A flame must burn somewhere, otherwise no light shines; there is no warmth, nothing.  It is terribly awkward, sure enough; it is painful, full of conflict, apparently a mere waste of time – at all events, it is against reason.  But that accursed Kundalini says, “It is the fullness of jewels; there is the source of energy.”  As Heraclitus aptly said:  war is the father of all things. 

Now this third center, the center of emotions, is localized in the plexus solaris, or the center of the abdomen.  I have told you that my first discovery about the Kundalini yoga was that these cakras really are concerned with what are called psychical localizations.  This center then would be the first psychical localization that is within our conscious psychical experience.  I must refer again to the story of my friend, the Pueblo chief, who thought that all Americans were crazy because they were convinced that they thought in the head.  He said: “But we think in the heart.”  That is anahata. 

Cont’d …  Then there are the primitive tribes who have their psychical localization in the abdomen.  And that is true of us as well: there is a certain category of psychical events that take place in the stomach.  Therefore one says, “Something weighs on my stomach.”  And if one is very angry, one gets jaundice; if one is afraid, one has diarrhea; or if in a particularly obstinate mood, one is constipated.  You see, that shows what psychical localizations means. 

Thinking in the abdomen means that there was once a time when consciousness was so dim that people noticed only the things that disturbed their intestinal functions, and everything else simply passed by the board; it did not exist because it had no effect upon them. 

Now, as I said, the first psychical localization that is conscious to us is the abdomen; we are not conscious of anything deeper.  I don’t know of a trace of a primitive psychology where people would locate their psyche in their bladder. 

And from the heart it is an equally long distance down to the plexus solaris, and then you are caught.  For there you have no freedom at all.  There is no air substance: you are just bones and blood and muscles; you are in the intestines; you are functioning there like a worm with no head.  But in the heart you are on the surface.  The diaphragm would be about the surface of the earth.  As long as you are in manipura you are in the terrible heat, of the center of the earth, as it were.  There is only the fire of passion, of wishes, of illusions.  It is the fire of which Buddha speaks in his sermon in Banares where he says, The whole world is in flames, your ears, your eyes, everywhere you pour out the fire of desire, and that is the fire of illusion because you desire things which are futile.  Yet there is the great treasure of the released emotional energy. 

So when people become acquainted with the unconscious they often get into an extraordinary state – they flare up, they explode, old buried emotions come up, they begin to weep about things which happened forty years ago.  That simply means that they were prematurely detached from that stage of life; they have forgotten that there are buried fires still burning.  Then they were unconscious, but when they touch the lower centers, they get back into that world and become aware that it is still hot, like a fire that has been left forgotten under the ashes.  But take away the ashes and there are still the glowing embers underneath, as it is said of pilgrims going to Mecca: they leave their fires buried under the ashes, and when they return the following year the embers are still glowing. 

Now in Manipura you have reached an upper layer where there comes a definite change.  The bodily localization of this cakra under the diaphragm is the symbol for the peculiar change that now takes place.  Above the diaphragm you come into anahata, the heart or air center, because the heart is embedded in the lungs and the whole activity of the heart is closely associated with the lungs.  One must be naïve to understand these things.  In primitive experience, it is the same thing.  In fact, it is a psychiological truth.  We understand more or less what manipura means psychologically, but now we come to the great leap, anahata.  What follows psychologically after you have fallen into hell?  When you have come into the whirlpool of passions, of instincts, of desires and so on, what follows after that? 

Mrs. Crowley:  Usually an enantiodromia; some opposite will now be constellated.  Some vision perhaps, or something more impersonal will follow. 

Dr. Jung: An enantiodromia, which would be the discovery of something impersonal?  In other words, that one no longer identifies with one’s desires.  Now, one must consider the fact that it is hard to talk of these things, because most people are still identical with manipura.  It is exceedingly difficult to find out what is beyond.  Therefore we must remain a bit in the symbolism first.  The next center, as I told you, has to do with the air.  The diaphragm would correspond to the surface of the earth, and apparently in getting into anahata we reach the condition where we are lifted up from the earth.  What has happened?  How do we get there at all?  You see in manipura we still don’t know where we are; we are in muladhara just as well, at least our feet are still standing in muladhara: but in anahata they are lifted up above the surface of the earth.

(Manipura) is the fire region, and that is the kitchen, or the stomach, where the food is cooked.  One stuffs the food into the (belly), and there it is heated by the blood.  In that way food is prepared so that one can digest it.  Cooking is an anticipation of digestion, a sort of predigestion.  For example, in Africa the papaya tree has the very peculiar quality that its fruit and leaves are full of pepsin, the same stuff which is found in the juice of the stomach, the digestive stuff par excellence. 

Therefore manipura would be a center in which substances are digested, transformed. 

For after manipura follows anahata, in which entirely new things occur; a new element is there, air, no longer gross matter. 

3-4 manipura to anahata

You know, it is sometimes an ideal not to have any kind of convictions or feelings that are not based upon reality.  One must even educate people, when they have to cross from manipura to anahata, that their emotions ought to have a real basis, that they cannot swear hell and damnation at somebody on a mere assumption, and that there are absolute reasons why they are not justified in doing such a thing.  They really have to learn that their feelings should be based on facts. 

(The) discovery of the psychogenic factor in medicine was really something you could compare with the crossing from manipura to anahata. 

So the crossing-over from manipura to anahata is really very difficult.  The recognition that the psyche is a self-moving thing, something genuine and not yourself, is exceedingly difficult to see and to admit.  For it means that the consciousness which you call yourself is at an end.  In your consciousness everything is as you have put it, but then you discover that you are not master in your own house, you are not living alone in your own room, and there are spooks about that play havoc with your realities and that is the end of your monarchy.  But if you understand rightly, and as tantric yoga shows you, this recognition of the psychogenic factor is merely the first recognition or the purusa.  It is the beginning of the great recognition appearing in the most grotesque and ridiculous forms.  You see, that is what the gazelle signifies.  TPoKY 54

Manipura means “City of the Shining Jewel.”  Here the energy is aggressive: to conquer, to consume, to turn everything into oneself.  We have an Adlerian psychology at this point, a total transformation.  One of the problems in the early Freud camp was already recognized here.  For Freud, sex was the prime energy; for Adler, it was the will to power.  For some people it is one, for some the other. 

Jung comes in as these two are fighting this thing out and says, “Yes, there are people running this way; here are also people running that way.  All of us have both.  One is recessive and the other dominant in any given case.”  So he had this psychology of the duality in what he called enantiodromia; you tip over and your sex drive suddenly gives way to a violence drive.  Or your winning drive suddenly gives way to sex.  They are in opposition to each other in our lives. 

So Cakra 3 is a primarily power-dominated cakra, and the Sanskrit here is very important.  This is the one from which most of the energies have to be generated.  Look at this ominous lotus.  The petals are described as having the color of lightning-laden thunderclouds.  In the center is the womb, the yoni – the fire, energy.  The swastika motif means movement, energy, violence.  The syllable is ram, and the animal is a ram.  He represents the vehicle of the god of fire, Agni, the fire of the womb, the fire of the sun, the fire of the sacrificial altar.  These are all the same fire.  They are the transforming fire.  The womb is the transforming medium, transforming past into future.  The gods here are Shiva, in his violent aspect, and his consort, Lakini, her jaws and breasts smeared with the blood and fat of sacrifices. 

   Now we get to the deep stuff.  Kali is in her Durga aspect.  But she is as black as time, Kali.  Kali means “black”; kali means “time.”  That’s her name.  She is black time out of which all things come, back into which they go – the void, the transcendent, the mother and tomb of all things.  “Don’t be afraid.  Nothing’s happening, just a ripple on the surface.”  Her prime altar is the battlefield, sacrifice.  This is the yoga of war.  The individual gives himself up to the Lord Death and is not in protection of himself but is moved by the tides of history. 

      People living on the levels of Cakras 1, 2, or 3 are living on animal levels.  Animals, too, cling to live.  Animals, too, beget their future.  Animals, too, fight to win.  So people on these levels have to be controlled by social law, dharma.  Just think of what our popular religions are concerned with – prayers for health, wealth, progeny, and victory.  That is asking the gods to serve your animal nature.  This is popular religion.  It doesn’t matter what the god’s name is. 

What is it the popular world wants?  It’s health, wealth, and progeny, and it doesn’t matter what the god’s name is.  So that’s the one religion, the one popular religion all over the world, no matter what the name of the god is.  The job of the priests, those in charge of the historical temple, is to get the name of their god linked up with this thing, and the money pours in like crazy. 

   Think of the first temptations of the Buddha: the temptation of lust, Cakra 2; temptation of fear, Cakra 3; and the temptation of duty, dharma.  He had gone past this.  We’re not in the field of authentic religious life, in the field of the spiritual birth, until we come up to Cakra 4.  This is at the level of the heart – the Sacred Heart of Jesus.  Jesus, as Leopold Bloom says in Ulysses, “with his heart on his sleeve.”