Thelemic Yoga (Mantrayoga Lesson)
I went to a yoga class at Bubastis Oasis. Not quite knowing what to expect. I had been to a few yoga classes at the 24 Hour Fitness gym club, but that was about it. I was not looking for an aerobic work out in yoga, I wanted the deeper more philosophical yoga. But even with that in mind all I expected was to be doing a lot of pranayama (breathing yoga), some guided meditation on the chakras, you know… your typical new agey stuff.
I attended a Yoga class at Bubastis Oasis in Dallas, Texas which was taught by Frater Nur-i-Siyah.
The class in attendance consisted of my wife and I, both of us very novice to Thelema, but also both very enthusiastic students. We like Thelema!
We began with Frater Nur-i-Siyah doing a banishing ritual, which he did with a focus and performance that definitely helped us get into the mindset. It was my first time to see this ritual performed, it was a specific one and I don’t remember its name. First clue that I was not in for a typical new agey pseudo-Hindu ride.
This was followed by some Hatha Yoga, this was about as close as it gets to the gym class setting.
Then we Frater Nur-i-Siyah gave us a brief discussion on the power of words in magic (something which deserves a lot of thought… a magicians words should be manifestations of his/her will), the roots of mantra practice, the purpose of it in magic, and then he showed the mantra we would be saying:
A ka dua
Tuf ur biu
Bi aa chefu
Dude ner af an nuteru.
In case you didn’t notice, this is not a Hindu mantra.
I think its fair to say Thelema is a syncretic religion, much like Santeria. It is a working together of many memes, many cultures, many religions. At least thats my opinion. So this Thelemic mantra is Egyptian.
He showed it to us on the stele of revealing.
Frater Nur-i-Siyah had us do the mantra yoga in this way, he would say it while we inhaled, and then as he inhaled we would say the mantra.
Frater Nur-i-Siyah had his own rosary made which he had made with 93 beads, one of which was the unicursal hexegram. There were more significant numerical divisions in this custom made rosary, but I do not remember them accurately. I do remember that I was impressed, and that I want one.
We said the mantra 93 times. It was hardcore. I have done some mindfulness meditation and zen before, but this was more intense, and when your mind wanders everyone will know because you screw up the words.
The breathing added to the intensity, I was very focused on trying to keep the breathing disciplined. More than I have ever been in my prior meditation practices.
Breathe in while the teacher says:
A ka dua
Tuf ur biu
Bi aa chefu
Dudu ner af an nuteru
Then you say it as you exhale.
The meaning of this mantra according to Crowley is :
Unity of the uttermost showed!
I adore the might of Thy breath,
Supreme and terrible God,
Who makest the Gods and Death
To tremble before Thee:–
I, I adore Thee.
According to the Cairo Museum catalog, the translation is:
O sublime one!
I adore the greatness of your spirits,
O formidable soul,
Who inspires terror of himself among the gods.
I mostly thought of it as an invocation of power. And I felt it, with an intense discipline.
When we arrived at Bubastis Oasis I was exhausted. Work had drained me dry, I had to drag my ass to get there in the first place.
Now I am up way past my bed time, super charged and super thrilled.
I plan to continue to experiment with this mantra in more personal practice.
Good stuff. Definitely a recharging experience.