by SS Dr. Santokh Singh Khalsa, Altadena CA
When I teach classes about the Ten Bodies, I can sum up the nature of each body in a short phrase: Radiant Body = your radiance or glow. Pranic Body = your energy. Arc Line = the projection of your mind. But the one body that is hard to get a simple handle on is the Subtle Body. This is because the Subtle Body is…well, subtle! It is impossible to explain in a few words. Your Subtle Body is the part of yourself that is not easy to define and describe and that is why it is so important to make that connection.
Here is a review of the Subtle Body as explained by the Siri Singh Sahib:
- At death, your Soul enters your Subtle Body. The Soul is carried by the Subtle Body through the transition to the Infinite. All other eight bodies drop away.
- Your Subtle Body is controlled by your consciousness and your consciousness is related to your Subtle Body.
- The Subtle Body is attuned to the subtle energy around us that is behind the external and superficial reality. In this subtlety lies your power to penetrate the universe.
- Being the Ninth body, the Subtle Body is related to the life of Guru Teg Bahadur, the Ninth Sikh Guru.
- Being the Ninth body, it is related to the number 9 which is “Mastery or Mystery” in Tantric Numerology.
Subtlety and Infinity
In mathematics, another word for infinity is “undefined.” If you can define something, then it is not infinite. The reality of the physical universe around you stimulates your five senses, which grounds you to this physical reality. But your infinite nature goes beyond this well-defined and concrete experience. This subtle energy of the infinite permeates the creation around you, but is not of this creation. All of your power comes from this subtle infinite energy.
You are connected to this through your consciousness and meditative mind that guide you on your path of destiny through any challenge. This is the true meaning of mastery. This mastery gives you a state of calmness, the attribute that was exemplified in the life of Guru Teg Bahadur. If you are not tuned to this subtle energy, then you live in delusion, everything becomes a mystery, and you think you are a powerless victim.
The Path of the Ninth Guru
Guru Teg Bahadur had an interesting pathway to becoming the Guru. He was the son of the Sixth Guru, Guru Hargobind. He was drawn to a life of meditation and prayer. He lived very quietly in a small village during the time of Guru Har Rai and Guru Harkrishan. On his deathbed, Guru Harkrishan said that the next Guru would be found in this certain village. Many pretenders to the Guruship went to this village to stake their claim. They were very active and public in their declaration of their worthiness to be Guru. They were the representation of the external and illusory. But all along in the background, this is where Guru Teg Bahadur had been calmly meditating for the past 20 years. He was the representation of the subtle Master.
The Subtle Body, which is strengthened by meditation, helps your Soul continue the journey out of the dungeon of the rib cage back to its home with the Infinite. Your Subtle Body connects to this subtle infinite energy during your entire life. At the time of death, when all of your other bodies drop away, your Subtle Body carries your Soul to Infinity.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
SS Santokh Singh Khalsa, DC, is a chiropractor, healer, and yoga practitioner. He has been teaching beginners how to start and maintain a regular daily yoga practice for over 35 years. He is a co-founder of the Awareness Center in Pasadena, CA in 1975 and developed The Ten Body Tune Up, a healing procedure based on his healing work with Yogi Bhajan.
Dr. Santokh Singh teaches beginners and trains new Kundalini Yoga teachers. He has a wellness chiropractic practice in Pasadena California, in which he incorporates the teachings of Yogi Bhajan and the spiritual principles of Sikh Dharma.