All the Yoga books have gone completely silent after talking about Shambhavi Mudra.It is a secret mudra in Yoga and one has to collect several references in scriptures to fully understand this mysterious yoga mudra. In the practice of shambhavi mudra, the most powerful mudra, eyes are focused on the eyebrow center, therefore it is also called as “Eyebrow center gazing”. This practice is widely quoted in the scriptures like Gherand samhita. You can transcend the fetters of individual ego by practicing shambhavi mudra for a sufficiently long period of time. In Shambhavi Mudra’s place is said to be between the throat and the forehead. This is a secret Mudra in which the person doing it should sit still and concentrate. He should then close his eyes partially as some people do when they sleep. Regular practice of Shambhavi Mudra makes a yogi perfect in doing it and makes him one step closer to salvation. Shambhavi Mudra makes a person free from all his sins and helps in the attainment of knowledge and ultimate truth. It also provides peace to the body and the mind.
Shambhavi mudra, also call Bhairavi mudra, is a subtle internal technique involving the eyes which can lead one to the depths of yogic meditation. It is described in many texts including Hathapradipika, Gherandha Samhita, Amanaskya Yoga, and Vijnanabhairava Tantra. These texts however do not give full instructions of this powerful technique but rather only hint at what it truly is. It has been a well guarded secret in yoga and only disclosed to a deserving disciple on whom a guru is extremely happy. The Agya Chakra opens during this mudra and the yogi becomes aware of the divine knowledge. A yogi can easily awaken kundalini shakti in others when he is in this state of being and perform shaktipat. Not everyone is authorized to do shaktipat and without being connected to the supreme guru consciousness (shiva consciousness) the a guru who attempts to do shaktipat risks his own downfall. On the other hand a yogi who is perfect in shambhavi mudra can easily do shaktipat, awaken kundalini , open not only the lower chakras in others but also the most difficult/premium agya chakra and sahastrar chakra in others. Very few known yogis are known to have perfected this mudra like — Chaitanya Mahaprabhu ji, Guru Nanak Dev ji and Lahiri Mahashaya in KalaYuga. There could be others but very few yogis come out in the open in public during their shambhavi state. Yogis prefer to stay secluded from public and publicity and live this state of bliss. Acharya Chandrahas Ji was one such yogi who was blessed with this mudra when his guru was extremely happy with him. In his meditation he saw the reason why he was blessed with this extremely rare blessing. It was in one of the past births HH Ramlal ji Maharaj promised him after meeting Acharya ji’s during penance that he would be granted a higher state of yoga in his next birth. It was during his life time he perfected this mudra over a period of consistent practice of 30 years. The photo of Acharya ji with this article shows him in this state of consciousness. People have seen him meditating for tens of hours in this samadhi state. He could easily enter or get out of this samadhi state while talking to people and describing his Guru, standing, listening to devotional songs or while meditating in cross legged posture. The nice thing about Shambhavi is that it can be done anywhere and at any time. It is not limited to seated sessions of practice. It takes our asana and physical practices to a whole other level.
Shambhavi is the name of the wife or consort of Shambhu (Shiva). She has many other names, such as Parvati, Shakti, etc., all of which have special significance in Indian mythology. It is believed that Shambhu taught Shambhavi the practice of shambhavi mudra and urged her to practice it diligently if she wanted higher awareness. It is said that the practice of shambhavi mudra will stir Shambhu (superconsciousness) and make him appear before you.
The practice is also known as bhrumadhya drishti. The word bhrumadhya means ‘eyebrow centre’, and drishti means ‘gazing’. This name describes the practice exactly – eyebrow centre gazing.
This practice (like agochari mudra) is widely quoted in the yogic scriptures. For example, in the Gherand Samhita it states: “Direct your eyes towards the middle of the eyebrows. Reflect on your real nature. This is shambhavi mudra, the most secret of all tantric scriptures.” (3: 59)
The same text devotes the next few verses to showering praise on this mudra. Among other things it says: “The man who diligently practises and knows shambhavi mudra becomes Lord Shiva himself. He becomes Narayana (Vishnu), the sustainer of all and also Brahma, the creator of the universe.”
This means many things, most of which are understandable only when one knows the significance of the Hindu gods. But we can say that one of the meanings is that one can transcend the fetters of the individual ego through practicing shambhavi mudra for a sufficiently long period of time. Through this one is able to expand awareness and see a significance and essence behind everything. Furthermore, one realizes that one’s real nature is far more than we can normally conceive.
The seal (mudra) that produces happiness (shambhavi). Shambhu (from which the word shambhavi is derived), or Shiva, then refers to the Self-realized state, which produces happiness. A mudra is thought to be like a sealing device with a raised surface, like a signet ring. In the same way the ring stamps an impression on a soft wax like surface, so Shambhavi Mudra stamps, or seals, its divine imprint on the receptive consciousness of the meditator, who is transformed into an image of the Divine. Through some type of physical or mental technique, a mudra also seals, or closes off, a normally open energy channel, thereby sealing in and recirculating the body’s energy to intensify the meditative effort.
Shambhavi Mudra, is an open-eyed meditation designed to integrate (or perhaps reintegrate) our inner and outer worlds. In the historic texts, the instructions for practicing Shiva’s Seal don’t extend beyond practicing the seal in meditation. It is highly secretive and only passed to a devotee through a fully realized Yogi guru who is attached to the supreme consciousness 24/7. Such yogis are extremely rare to find and the probably of this ‘purna siddha-yogi’ extremely happy with his devotee to bless him with ‘Shammbhavi mudra’ state of consciousness is rarest of rare blessing.
Through Shambhavi Mudra, as Hindu scholar Mark Dyczkowski writes in his book The Doctrine of Vibration, the power of awareness “manifests itself on two levels simultaneously,” that is, individually and cosmically, so that these “two aspects are experienced together in the blissful realization that results from the union of the inner and outer states of absorption.” It is in this way that we are sealed and stamped with Shiva-consciousness. To paraphrase Patanjali, is that the physical and psychological grip of your limited individual body-mind relaxes. Your consciousness expands beyond its normally perceived boundaries to encounter what Patanjali calls the “endless,” the consciousness that pervades all space. At this stage of the meditation, one often experience a –feeling of great openness and peace, as if “I” am still there, but there’s more to that “I” than I am usually aware of.
Mudra is a gesture that starts in a very subtle way and then follows a powerful movement gradient to affect objective perception, transforming the energy that underlies this objective manifestation to one of pure clarity. This clarity can be followed internally to the central nadi Susumna. At this point many “doors” open, through which the movement can be continued and the expansion of knowledge through one of these doorways can be facilitated.
The technique of Shambhavi mudra begins with the eyes. We keep the eyes open. The texts say not to blink but in my opinion this matters not in the slightest because it doesn’t matter what we are seeing. The important point is the seeing itself. This technique in my opinion is also not about directing the gaze. Gazing is not Shambhavi mudra. Gazing at the midbrow or third eye only puts the attention on an object and not on the seeing itself. The seeing itself is what draws us in, not what the eyes are looking at. The opening of the third eye comes when the ordinary two eyes become clear of the mental projections. Ordinarily our eyes are completely contaminated by the “eye of the mind” which distorts what we are seeing through the pureness of the seeing itself. I have given the example before of trying to see purely when one is thinking of one’s favorite movie. Try it. Can you do it? Can you see with complete clarity and focus while the mind thinks of some topic? It can’t be done. We are either seeing through the mind’s eye or the 2 eyes of the body. Both cannot be simultaneously activated. In our everyday functioning, we are bouncing back and forth between objective and instrumental awareness, normally so quickly that we are not even aware of it. And our home base is in the objective level of perception. Continued application of Shambhavi mudra takes our home base lower into the instrumental realm, a vast realm completely unlike the objective reality.
The Book “The Secret of Golden Flower” also advocates the half opened eyes; it tells amazing facts regarding this. It says closed eyes represent anima and fully opened eyes represent animus, or better understand that anima is feminine energy and animus is male energy. And with half opened eyes both energy get balanced. The regular practice of Shambhavi Mudra leads to Turiya State (super conscious state).
As per Gheranda Samhita a yogi who masters Shambhavi Mudra is a living Adinath and Brahma himself! ‘नेत्रांजन समालोक्य आत्मारामं निरीक्षयेत .. ” Netranjan Samalokya Aatmaramam Nireekshyayet”. Other Yoga practices and techniques are to raise the life force up, but after Shambhavi Mudra, the prana stays up on its own.Lahiri Mahasaya had written some comments about it in his diaries. Yogananda Paramhansa reproduced those comments in his ‘Autobiography of a Yogi’. No other guru has claimed experiencing it. It’s a rare occurrence.
Generally speaking, practicing the Shambhavi Mudra stimulates and opens up the third eye, which is located between the eyebrows. The third eye is also known as the Ajna Chakra. When this chakra is open, a Yogi or Yogini is more readily able to communicate with a teacher, guru or other spiritual guide. He or she may also develop the ability to read minds, become omniscient and even align with Shiva and Shakti in creating, maintaining, destroying and then re-creating the three planes of existence. Neurologists have determined that each eye is connected to the opposite side of the brain. The right eye is directly connected to the left side of the brain, and the left eye is connected to the right side of the brain. When the practice of Shambhavi Mudra is sustained for some time, the left and right sides of the brain balance and integrate with each other. The integration helps the Yoga practitioner to expand his or her normal range of awareness. This expanded state of awareness enables a Yogi or Yogini to penetrate into the subtle levels of reality that are normally not accessible to most people. With this expanded state of awareness comes an understanding of the interconnectedness of the web of life and a reverence for all life forms, including one’s self.