One of my first encounters with yoga was in 1993, almost dizzy from the Jet Foil ride, when I went down to the pier in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, where four friends were waiting for me to present a novel, and we continued to the Ateneo de La Lagoon. After an academic exposition and an abominably interesting discussion about avant-garde expressive forms, we all went out into the street down the stairs of the Athenaeum and, fearing that the cold would suffocate me, I stopped to take a good look at the notice board, to the left from the exit, and there was an announcement of teachings by an enlightened man named Shambu, who would be in Los Realejos for the next four days. Swiftly I went to Los Realejos the next morning and, indeed, this man, surrounded by oriental paraphernalia, immersed in a state of continuous meditation and teaching, was used to transmit to whoever wanted it a kind of mystical and unnameable knowledge. Possessed by the silence of interiorization, one meditated with him for hours with sustained self-observation techniques, or with the simple sifting of thoughts that were not constructive or vital. Shambu said, “Can you watch television without being affected by it, without being carried away by what appears on it, without your senses being attracted by it? Life is the same, and all objects are the same: work, family, leisure, everything absorbs our attention without us being able to divert it, and the key is to practice that effort to redirect attention: to withdraw». Oh, oh, oh, that the cold was reluctant and seeped through all the cracks of the dress, which, in the basement of the House of Culture of Los Realejos, with walls moldy from humidity, brought with it the proliferation of sneezes in the various noses of the apprentice yogis that we had there.
It was not long before we reached the end of the two days of retreat when, very properly, we all gathered in various groups around what Shambu called monitors, that is, people of more advanced practice who would question us about our respective experiences or, of some initiatory way, would influence our learning. In my group we were four ladies and I, in addition to the monitor. Of the four young ladies, one was dressed in pristine white, wearing a peplo, her complexion had that mystical pose typical of those who have already been introduced to similar experiences, and also had a nostalgic look that, to those who do not know how to see if not from the outside, it would have seemed the same as that of lost lovers who suffer from that beautiful and pheromonic disease that is relieved in the thalamus and preferably by making the opprobrious parts of the organism work.
I testify that I, who had burst into innumerable sneezes, with loud mucus, due to my special sensitivity to carpets and cold, remained the whole time with my eyes closed. The silence, apart from the sneezing and relaxed breathing of the participants, was almost total. And the meditation continued. However, I noticed that something approached me and passed about four or eight inches from my skin. My eyes remained closed and I considered that this sensation was typical of so many hours in a row meditating, which happens happily and begins to be the perceptive opening to the interior universes that Western man was reluctant and stupid to access. So I continued in my meditative internalization when, lo and behold, I thought, my auditory senses also began to be affected by a strange change, but even more violent: in the midst of the silence in which the breaths were perceived more clearly Cataplás!, I heard a noise that rang throughout the room. I didn’t open my eyes there either, and I continued immersed in that wonderful experience. Of course, I felt as if some of those who were around me were momentarily removed in an improvised group, but fairly quickly the murmuring calmed down.
Fifteen minutes or so later, the last meditative exercise ended and we all opened our eyes, fell into less disciplined postures, and rejoined each other with our monitors. The one in our group started a round of questions and answers about our experience, and when it was my turn, I quickly recounted what had excited me most about mine: “I’ve never experienced the strange aural sensation I just had in the middle of an extraordinary state of peace and discipline”, and continued: “on one occasion, meditating with a lama Karmapa, a flash of golden light that came from above gave me such a start that I opened my eyes and ran frightened and ran from the room . With that inappropriate escape from the supposedly abysmal, the experience ceased, which, due to its speed and grandeur, promised to be exceptional. But on this occasion I have managed to control my fear at the supernatural noise that I have heard, like a clap in the air, like a divine applause…».
The ridicule came then: the stylized damsel in the white peplo that I warned about before interrupted the conversation and pointed out my experience: “It wasn’t any divine applause, it was the slap I had to hit the monitor.” I was stunned, I don’t know if both because of the frustration of my unexpected and supernatural experience, and because the slap in the face in question, and which I had interpreted as a noise of divine origin, had come, precisely, from that thing so fine. , beautiful, nostalgic and lost in the ethereal as the dawn damsel seemed. Everything later turned into a discussion between the monitor and the mystical young girl about whether he had tried to touch her plexus chakra -area where I saw two beautiful breasts held by fine lingerie-, at the precise moment in which she made the kundalini energy from I don’t remember which part of his lower back. And there they stayed while I went to put on my shoes to get away from such flagrant degeneration.
I left, without saying goodbye, I took the car, and I returned to La Laguna, I went into El Ateneo to have a glass of Vilaflor water, I looked at the wall, and the Shambu advertisement was no longer there. It is clear that the sadaka or aspirant must be equanimous, not be carried away by joys or sorrows, not be influenced by fears or desires, because the thoughts that originate in the subtle world acquire great capacity to substantiate themselves in the coarsest world of the material, prey to limerence or infatuation, and it can happen that whoever goes to bed in youth, dawns excrement, as much as whoever lets the stantigua of the senses pass falls prey to Pastueño astonishment. Sic et simpliciter.