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Chapter 7: The Obstacles to Meditation

Now he says that he can predict that within six months there will be a tumor. And after six months, when the tumor comes to the body, X-rays show the same picture as he had taken six months before. So Kirlian says that without being ill it can be predicted - and it can be cured before it ever comes to the body, if the body aura becomes more circulating. He doesn’t know how it can be cured - acupuncture knows, Patanjali knows how it can be cured.

Disease, for Patanjali, is some disturbance in the body aura, in the prana, in the bioenergy, in the electricity of your body. That’s why it can be cured through om.

Sometime, sit alone in a temple. Go to some old temple where nobody goes, under the dome - a circular dome is just to reflect the sound. Sit under it, chant om loudly, and meditate on it; let the sound reflect back and fall upon you like a rain and suddenly you will feel after a few minutes that your whole body is getting peaceful, calm, quiet: the body energy is getting settled.

The first thing is disease. If you are ill in your prana energy, you cannot go far. How can you go far with illness hanging around you like a cloud? You cannot enter into deeper realms. A certain health is needed. The Indian word for health is very meaningful; it is swasthya. The very word means “to be oneself.” The word for health in Sanskrit means to be oneself, to be centered. The English word health is also beautiful. It comes from the same word, the same root, from where holy and whole come. When you are whole you are healthy and when you are whole you are holy also.

It is always good to go to the roots of words because they arose out of a long experience of humanity. Words have not come accidentally. When a person feels whole his body energy is running in a circle. The circle is the most perfect thing in the world. A perfect circle is a symbol of God. Energy is not being wasted, it circulates again and again; it goes on moving like a wheel; it perpetuates itself.

When you are whole you are healthy, and when you are healthy you are holy also, because that holy word also comes from “whole.” A perfectly healthy person is holy, but then there will be problems. If you go to the monasteries you will find all types of ill people there. In fact, only ill people go there. A healthy person - you will ask what he has to do in a monastery. Ill people go there, abnormal people go there. Something is basically wrong with them. That’s why they escape from the world and go there.

Patanjali first makes it a rule that you should be healthy, because if you are not healthy you cannot go far. Your illness, your discomfort, your broken inner circle of energy will be a stone around your neck. When you meditate you will feel ill at ease. When you would like to pray, you cannot pray; you would like to rest. A low energy level will be there. And with low energy how can you go far? And to reach to God? For Patanjali, God is the farthest point: much energy is needed. A healthy body, a healthy mind, a healthy being is needed. Disease is dis-ease - dis-ease in the body energy. Om will help, and we will discuss other things also. But here Patanjali is talking about how om, the sound itself, helps you inside to become a whole.

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