Auras are what we might call the perception of the light bodies or purushas, their perceptual appearance to our eyes. Such perception is easily triggered through simple exercises and practice but doesn’t serve much value unless the perception is refined.
Like EEG measures the effect of brain activity, auras are the effect of prana or life energy movement. They are not the movement itself, but the glow of activity.
It’s pretty simple to understand. Subtle energy is perceived as light or felt. It is a more refined or finer value of light than our usual photo-receptors will pick up. But if we refine the physiology, the perception gets refined as well. When that energy moves, it creates field effects, just like electricity creates magnetic fields.
What we see depends on where the perception is clear. It also tends to be personalized, seen thorough our own filters. What we expect or are willing to see, for example. Some people can choose to see or not see, like shifting focus. A slight attuning ‘switches on’ and off more subtle perception or shifts through layers of it or shifts the conscious mode.
Some people flick the switch accidentally and have occasional perceptions. Some simply have clearer periods for awhile. And a few people are born with an ability or siddhi. Siddhi is a word typically translated as power or special ability but in this context, it’s more like a gift. The perception itself is knowledge.
Adam the Dreamhealer, for example, was born with the ability to see auras. With training from a Qi Gong master, he learned to develop his perception and control the powerful subtle energy he had.
In his workshops, he used to have a few people come up and he would do a quick aura read, marking dark spots on a body outline on screen for the audience to see. He would then discuss these with the person. Sometimes, they marked the site of an old injury. Sometimes a developing or known health issue. Sometimes an emotional resistance that had not yet developed into a health issue.
Adam’s emphasis has been on teaching people to use their own energy and attention to heal themselves.
You may have noticed that someone with developed abilities might be able to see not just auras but the actual movement of energy, the way different pranas move in different parts of the body, and the way that movement is reflected in physical functions. They see the mechanics of the body in action. This is partly refinement of perception and partly the “third eye”, the ability of consciousness itself to perceive directly. (remember – the senses arise from consciousness)
Because consciousness does not have physical boundaries like our eyes, it can be used to look at a distance, look inside the body, and look at other times. Perception is driven by attention and intention rather than the physical senses. Because the perception is within consciousness, it comes with it’s own knowledge. What is seen is known. The focus of this article though is refined perception with the eyes.
What is Seen
Because of the variations in both who is seeing and what they are looking at, there is a wide range of what might be seen. Energy fields are not distinct layers like a cake but rather a range of overlapping energies with certain things prominent in a given person.
Close to the physical body is a dense light that is the etheric. (electromagnetic is slightly more physical) Surrounding the body in progressively more diffuse values is the vital and mental bodies. While we may describe them as a set of layers and sub-layers, they are really just a continuum so that’s largely how they’re seen. Most visible is usually the denser emotional/vital or Pranamaya body. The effect of the active pranas.
Auras grow, shrink and shift with our energies. They blend a bit when they overlap, more so with very close contact.
There will be some general light around the body with brighter areas in some places. There will tend to be brighter splotches of various colours and areas with different general tones. Generally, bright colours are expressive and energetic, muddy colours illustrate some resistance or inertia.
At the highest edge of the mind is the gap, the vibratory edge of becoming. Here is the perception of golden bliss, the bliss body. Life itself. If you’re seeing someone with a conscious bliss body, the effect on the emotional field is more like pink effects.
Only living creatures have the prana bodies – insects, plants, and animals. But the becoming, the movement of consciousness is seen in everything. Buildings, rocks, furniture.
This movement of becoming is thus seen 2 ways. As golden glows around life forms, similar to what is illustrated in the film The Celestine Prophesy. Humans are sometimes portrayed as having halos – the head can have a stronger field and clothes can mute perception of the bodies field. All life forms have the same but a few people have very strong ones.
When the bliss deepens into love, the light of love glows in everything. The entire environment is bathed in gold.
The highest colour perceivable by the eyes is an intense white, usually in the heart (soul) or crown. White in the aura can indicate noise though.
How it Relates
Chakras are a related subject that I discuss on Understanding Your Energy System. See the part on Looks Like. As it is “inside”, it requires the perception of consciousness.
Back in Seeing with the Heart, I described 7 levels of visual perception. You may have noticed that the first 3 were values of perception of life forms (Physical, Etheric, Vital), whereas the next 4 were perception of other values of creation. (Celestial, Universal, Cosmic, Spiritual) Other “worlds” if you will. (Lokas are typically used to describe celestial worlds)
In some ways, these divide refined physical perception with the eyes from the “third eye” perception of more subtle values of existence. Some celestial stuff can be seen both ways.
These are of course arbitrary divisions. The idea here is to get a sense of it. If you try to compare chakras with purushas and the 7 levels of perception, you will find common ground and how they may align, but don’t confuse them with being the same thing. Chakras are the core energy system in life, purushas are the sheaths or layers of expression, and auras are the perception of the effects of purusha. Levels of Perception is a blend, as discussed.
Any given person may see creation but not auras or vice versa. Depends on what is open and what is refined. When our baggage and resistance falls away, we may be surprised by gifts we didn’t know we had. Not everyone will see everything as it may not be required for what is to be experienced.
The point of this post is understanding experiences that may arise. It is not to make seeing auras important. Just as any other value of perception can be a trap, so too this.
Don’t consider this an exhaustive or complete review, just a general overview. There are others with a far keener perception than I. But there is also a lot of misinformation out there.