Khechari Mudra and spiritual progress
I am learning and practicing Kriya Yoga techniques for about an year
now. I keep reading about Khechari Mudra on several websites, forums and books. I
tried to lengthen my tongue using few techniques but in vain. I simply can't do
it. Is it that without Khechari one cannot attain Samadhi? Is it a must for
making spiritual progress? I am feeling nervous because of this. Kindly clear my
doubts. Thank you in advance.
Well...you are not alone out there who believes the same! Your question can
be looked into from multiple angles. First of all let's take Khechari Mudra. As
I have said somewhere else on this website, Khechari Mudra is no doubt a
beneficial practice. However, not every practice is suitable for every
individual. Khechari Mudra induces what is sometimes called Jada Samadhi
or gross Samadhi. Think of it as a sort of artificial way to calm the mind and push
it into higher realms. But that doesn't mean Khechari alone is everything. There
is a nice small story that Ramakrishna Paramahamsa used to tell his
disciples. The story goes something like this...
Once upon a time there was a goldsmith. One day as he was working he suddenly
went into Khechari Mudra and Samadhi. People of the village kept him under a
tree and they started worshipping him thinking that he has indeed become a great
Yogi. Few days passed by. One day he suddenly came out of Samadhi. His tongue
dropped down and he became normal. It was a quiet afternoon. He looked around
here and there. Shook his head. Murmured something to himself and walked towards
his workplace. In next few hours he again entangled into wife, children,
relatives and all the mundane desires of life.
Can you see my point there? Khechari Mudra is a beneficial practice, no
doubt, but mere Khechari Mudra may not give you the Supreme Knowledge. You may
be still like that goldsmith who even after experiencing Khechari Mudra and
Samadhi got trapped in material desires. So, you see Khechari is one of the
"assistants" on the spiritual path. One of the assistant...not the only
assistant. People from Bhakti Marga or Dnyana Marga rarely practice Khechari
Mudra but still there are many examples wherein such sadhaks have made a great
amount of spiritual progress.
Another thing about our topic of discussion is misunderstanding about the
word Khechari. Many people make the mistake of
equating Khechari and Khechari Mudra. They are not! In Sanskrit, the word
Khechari comes from root Kha which means space. Khechari thus literally
means "moving in space". Now, this "moving in space" is two fold. One gross
meaning is Khechari Mudra where tongue is made to "move in space". More
important meaning, however, refers to that state of chitta where Prana
enters Brahmarandhra i.e. Prana or Kundalini Shakti moves in the Sahasrara region. Thus Khechari always doesn't mean Khechari Mudra.
Thus Khechari Mudra and Khechari Avasta are not the same. It depends on the context of
discussion how the term Khechari is used. So, when a Dhyana Yogi who is not
practicing Khechari Mudra goes into Samadhi, he is actually entering Khechari
(not Khechari Mudra). When you read websites, forums or books it is important to
read the information in the right context.
Now the question remains - Is it worth to spend time in learning Khechari Mudra?
The answer to this question needs to be individualized. Some people can go in
Khechari Mudra (at least initial stages) relatively easily than others so they
may find this investment worth but others who simply can't progress even after
several years may find it out of their reach. So one
should check about one's ability, patience as well as inclination. If you decide to take
up Khechari Mudra then do whatever preliminary practices you have been taught
but at the same time keep doing you other sadhanas (pranayama,
meditation etc.) regularly. Also, see your time availability and liking. With some
practitioners Khechari Mudra happens on its own along with several other
kriyas after the Kundalini has awakened. The awakened Kundalini gets it done
from the practitioner spontaneously and effortlessly. The Cosmic mother Kundalini being
Dnyanawati (of the form of Knowledge), knows what her child needs.
So even this spontaneous form of Khechari Mudra remains a possibility for any
Our readers and students often ask me what are signs of spiritual progress and my answer always
is - Vairagya and Manolaya. Rest all symptoms can be
transient. Unless you are able to show detachment in your life, unless there is
dissolution of mind, real and permanent spiritual progress is difficult.
Mastering some bodily technique is fine but more important is to strive hard
to attain these two attributes. So, with Khechari or without Khechari,
Vairagya and Manolaya are must for spiritual progress. To summarize, even if you fail to attain Khechari Mudra its not
the end of the world! Just move on zealously with your other sadhanas
and enjoy your journey. As Lord
Krishna has affirmed in Bhagvat Gita, practice of Yoga never goes waste. So, be
consistent, firm and steadfast on your path. Success will undoubtedly touch your
feet one day.