Do you ever have that experience of looking into the mirror and getting so caught up in the image of yourself that you become consumed with thoughts and stop feeling yourself?
Or eating a bag of popcorn / tub of ice-cream / block of chocolate and suddenly there’s none left but you notice that you hardly tasted or felt what you ate.
Or perhaps your were touching your body or someone was touching your body but you didn’t really ‘feel’ it. A kind of going through the motions that left you actually quite ‘untouched’.
What’s going on here?
> Shiva was not home…
In the very poetic tantric tradition of Kashmiri Shaivism the senses are considered goddesses, shakti’s. And these shakti’s are the devotees of Shiva, who sits at the centre of the shakti chakra. That is your heart.
Their names are shruti shakti (hearing), sparsha shakti (touching), rupana shakti (seeing), rasana shakti (tasting) & ghandha shakti (smell).
In every moment these shakti’s go out into the world and harvest all the beauty and richness of existence. They collect all the sounds, sensations, sights, tastes and smells, and bring them back to the altar of the heart as offerings for Shiva <3
However, sometimes Shiva is apparently missing…we are not present to our heart, resting at the centre of the shakti chakra. When this happens the shakti’s get lost in the world, they drop their offering baskets, trip over thoughts, rip their skirts on jagged memories and forget the way home. Oh no! There is no polarity or magnetic force created by Shiva drawing them back to the heart.
We experience this as the inability to sensually relish in the beauty of life and transform sounds, sensations, sights, tastes and smells into pure delight felt in heart. You might be sitting in front of the most picturesque landscape and yet you feel untouched. Instead we might seek more or excess sensory stimulation (more chocolate, more intense touch, very loud sensations) to try and feel. Instead of becoming more present and resting as Shiva.