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Posts on the Andean Cosmovision

Tag: llankay (page 2 of 2)

Tuning the Three Centers of Being

As background for this meditation I strongly recommend that–if you haven’t already–you read the posts: Andean Cosmovision: The Basics, Intent, and The Three Energy Centers (Part 1).

This is one of the two meditations about which I’ve heard don Americo Yabar say that if we would only do this on a regular basis it would have a very beneficial affect on us (the other meditation was described in the post Bellybutton to the Pachamama). Most people (including myself) hear something like that and say ‘yes, great…..what else can you teach me?’ I wonder what it is about (some of) us that we want more and more rather than to develop and explore what we have? As I have mentioned in other posts I have found myself, after years of learning more and more, returning back to the simpler and earlier things I’ve learned in this approach as being the best way to work this path into my life. Anyway…

For this meditation you need to sit on the ground so that you can comfortably place your hands on the Earth (the Pachamama).

First, notice what your energy feels like before you start. How does it feel to be you right now?

Begin the meditation by placing one of your hands on the Pachamama and the other on your body over your llankay (the center of your physical being, located a few finger breadths below your navel). With intent (sincere pretending) form an energetic connection between your llankay and the Pachamama, and ask her to bring your llankay into harmony with her. Notice the effect of this connection, and continue until you feel that the energy of your llankay is in harmony with the Pachamama (usually a few minutes).

Then, take your hand from your llankay and place it on the Pachamama, and take the hand that was on the Pachamama and place it over your munay (your heart, the center of love). Again, with intent, connect the energy of the two and ask the Pachamama to bring your heart into harmony with her.

When you sense that this harmony has occurred take your hand from your munay and place it on the Pachamama and put the hand that was on the Pachamama on your yachay (the center of thought, the yachay itself is centered at the crown of your head). Continue until your yachay has come into harmony with the Pachamama.

Now follow the same process but this time coming into harmony with the refined energy of the Cosmos. Start by putting one hand over your llankay and raise the other hand toward the sky to connect with the energy of the Cosmos. With intent open a connection between the two and ask the Cosmos to bring your llankay into harmony with it. Repeat with your munay and your yachay, switching hands each time.

When you have finished notice your energy now. How your energy shifts from before the meditation to after the meditation is the true (and only) meaning and significance of the meditation.

I recommend that you do this on a regular basis for a while and see how it affects your experience of the world.  There is a nice follow-up to this meditation that I will be posting soon.

Source of this meditation: don Americo Yabar.

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The Three Centers of Being (Part 2)

If you have yet to read Part 1 on this topic I recommend that you read it first. This post covers the same concepts introduced in the post The Crazy Ape (which I also recommend that you read), but with a slightly different slant that we can now consider given what we have covered in this blog.

The three centers of being (yachay, munay, and llankay), when applied metaphorically to cultures, provide a useful way of thinking about the environmental crisis we face and how we might approach it. Western society has the knowledge (yachay) and the technology (llankay) to head towards a future of greater health and beauty on this planet, not just for we humans but for the diversity of life. We seem, however, to lack the heart (munay) to do so.

The indigenous people of Peru (I am thinking specifically of the Qero because I am most familiar with them) have the heart. The Qero (also spelled Q’ero) are as developed in the munay as the West is in technology and knowledge. Knowledge about our planet’s environmental crisis and the technology to address it are crucial elements to solving the problem, but they may not be enough. The Western view of reality which leads us to being so great at technology and knowledge also tends to disconnect us at a very important and deep experiential level from Nature. The Andean Cosmovision puts us deeply into the experience of our connection with Nature, but it does not lead to the knowledge and the technology to address the problems we have created. My hypothesis is that an important step toward solving the environmental crisis would be to build a bridge between the two Cosmovisions. Americo Yabar and other Andeans are working to build a bridge from the Andes to the West. Other Westerners and I are working to build a bridge from the West to the Andes.

It might be possible to bring together experts from the various cultures, experts on the environment and technology from the West, and on the munay from the indigenous cultures, to map out the course our species needs to take. Or perhaps what we need to do is to develop and integrate the yachay, munay, and llankay within ourselves. That is part of what I am working on within myself. In this Salka Wind site I am endeavoring to give you all I can to help you follow a similar path if you would like. I say ‘part of what I am working on’, for the ‘three centers of being’ are but part of the Andean people’s vision of who we are and what our relationship can be with Nature and the Cosmos. I’ll be covering other aspects of their vision as this blog progresses.

One of the themes of this blog is ‘we can still head toward a future of greater beauty on this planet and this is one way that might work’. This was not my intent going into the study of Andean mysticism, the theme emerged as I was looking for ways of bringing my studies in Peru into my discipline of psychology, and finding that ecopsychology was a good fit. Even if it was not my original intent it is very congruent with my own values, cares, and concerns. I would like, however, to share that thinking of the Andean Cosmovision as a means to a desired end (healing the planet) does not encompass it, there is something more going on (‘means to an end’ is a very yachay thing) that will either connect with your munay through its love and beauty, or not.

There are three things in the universe: 1) those things the yachay (intellect) understands; 2) those things the yachay does not understand but eventually will (e.g. through advancements in science); and 3) those things the yachay will never understand (e.g. the munay and llankay).

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The Three Centers of Being (Part 1)

In the Andes they identify three centers of our being; the yachay, the munay, and the llankay. Each center is located in a different part of the body and each provides a different way of perceiving and understanding reality.

The yachay is located in our head. It is our ability to think, in other words it is the intellect. In our culture, at least in my world of science and academia, logic is viewed as the epitome of thought. In the Andes, however, wisdom as a quality of thought is valued more than logic and intelligence. Wisdom is built upon life experiences, accompanied by an appreciation and understanding of the larger-than-individual and larger-than-humanity systems involved in any action. I would add that wisdom also implies some amount of caring and compassion. Wisdom, it would seem, implies a yachay that acts in accord with the other two centers, which we will turn to next.

The munay is located in our heart. It is the center of love. The ‘love’ associated with the munay, however, is not an emotion. Emotions are tightly connected to our thoughts. How we respond emotionally to an event is largely a product of the meaning we assign to it. But the love of the munay is not an emotion; it has nothing to do with romance or sex or sentimentality, and jealousy does not apply. Our yachay and its ability to analyze (i.e. break things into pieces) gives us the experience of being separate from everything else in the Cosmos. In the Andean Cosmovision the Cosmos is a vast network of interconnected filaments of energy and we, rather than being disconnected things, are part of that network. Through the munay we experience our connection with the rest of the Cosmos. The Cosmos has an underlying frequency, and it is our (beautiful) experience of tuning into that frequency through our munay that gets labelled with the closest available term ‘love’. (This definition of love comes to us from don Americo Yabar).

To experience reality through our munay we need to move our consciousness from our head to the area of our heart, and when we do, we experience a different way of perceiving and understanding the world. It may seem strange to speak of moving our consciousness to our heart (compared to, say, keeping our consciousness in our head and simply being aware of our heart). In my culture it is generally assumed that consciousness is always, must always, be in our head. The best way I have, however, for describing how to experience the munay or the llankay is that all we need to do is to move our consciousness there. I’ll be sharing some meditations for exploring this in later posts .

Now to the llankay. The llankay is located a couple of finger-breadths below our navel and a few inches inside our body. The llankay is the center of our physical being and its ability to come into physical manifestation. It is also described as our ability to work, to use our physical body to alter the world. At the center of the llankay is our ‘not-being’, where we are ‘no-thing’, from which our physical being emerges. The llankay is another location where we can place our consciousness and shift our experience of the Cosmos.

I have found the concept of these three centers (yachay, munay, and llankay) to be helpful in integrating my boy-scientist, Western upbringing (very yachay) with my experiences in Peru (very munay). Science, religion, philosophy are all of the yachay. They are immensely useful…and they cannot possibly understand the munay (and vice versa). The intellect can describe and explain and think about reality all it wants and it still does not overlap with reality as experienced by the munay or by the llankay. The integration of these three centers of being comes from a deeper level of ourselves. For me it was at this deeper level–beyond the distinction of the yachay, munay, and llankay–where the beauty and value of my explorations of munay eventually established a level of credibility that my intellect could acknowledge even if it could not understand.

I’ll be sharing some more thoughts about the yachay, munay, and llankay and providing some meditations related to them in upcoming posts (see below)

July 9, 2011:  The following subsequent posts are available:  The Three Centers of Being (Part 2), Tuning the Three Centers of Being.

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