The Laundromat

The Laundromat

Laundromat of death by Zach Petersen
Laundromat of death by Zach Petersen

I’ve spoken a great deal about healing and purification over the years. When we first take up a spiritual or healing practice, we gradually realize how we resist and contract and we learn to release. At first in the practice, then over time in our daily life.

The Yoga Vasishtha, in the story of Cudala, describes collective practice of the Yoga Sutra siddhis and the collective benefits of yogic flying.

When you engage in any large-scale group practice like that, you can experience collective purification. We notice the usual clearing but it doesn’t feel like ours. Some describe this as being in a collective washing machine.

As we awaken, then settle deeper and deeper into our universal nature, we move through a lot of our personal baggage and begin more and more to recognize it’s all collective.

We may have the idea that we’ll be done when we finish our own stuff. But the allotted karma we came in with (the “suitcase“) continues to unfold in the cycles of time as long as we’re in this body. Further, purification gradually shifts from personal to collective. We’re in this together.

Yet our relationship with our baggage changes considerably when we get out from under the ego. It becomes more like the noise of the radio of a passing car. The drama and entanglement fade and it broadly becomes smoother and less eventful. What was once tragedy becomes a bump in the road, even if it’s major.

We tend to work with familiar forms of release in the collective. For example, if we’ve had anger issues, we’ll develop an affinity for processing anger. We can serve the collective with that skill.

In time, we notice the shifting waves moving through the collective. We’ll see a wave of grief for a couple of hours or days. Then anxiety. And so forth. In recent times, this has been much sped up with little space between waves. We’re all in the same soup but for most people, this is subconscious. This is why we see so much acting out in the collective. If we don’t know how to release, we dramatize.

As we refine and become more conscious on other levels, we begin to run washers on multiple levels. It can become like running a multi-level cosmic laundromat.

Even on the cosmic level of creation, we can help the devas. On this level, it’s not a contraction like we would cleanse above. It’s more about bringing the light and bleaching out the shadows.

In the long trends of time, the devas also lost their close connection with the Divine. As sattva dropped, they fell into habits that don’t reflect the Divine template. Like forgetting how to maintain quality. Even just a little off on subtle levels can lead to broad ignorance on the surface.

In terms of the legs of Dharma, we’re restoring truth, compassion, purity of light, and warming the inertia (shadows). Then the laws of nature can see clearly and act with the Divine rather than with their ancient memory of the Divine.  


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  1. Gina L Westbrook

    I just got sent this from a friend who copied and pasted it into an email. I didn’t notice his note at the beginning where he credits you, and as I read it, I kept thinking, “Wow! This sounds just like David Buckland!” and I was thinking to forward it to you to ask if you knew the author. Then I saw your signature at the end and laughed. My friend and I didn’t know we both followed you. It’s a small, small world. Sattva attracts the seeker.

    1. Hi Michael
      🙂 Yes, but it’s also one that requires high clarity and a lot of integration. Both being able to discriminate the body and the space element infusing it plus control the mass of the body so it can be moved with intention. This closely relates to the next siddhi, mastery of the elements.

      When it’s uncommon, you’re also having to work through collective expectations of reality. 🙂

      Thanks. Love

      1. Peter

        Hi David

        I saw a video once on youtube entitle “yogic flying” with people in meditative postures, hopping up into the air from their knees and falling back to the ground under the clear and present effects of gravity. All the people in the video were talking about the joys of flying etc. Am i missing something??

        1. Hi Peter
          Yes, you’re missing most of what’s going on in just looking at the appearance. The practice is quite different than something like an exercise or yoga pose. It’s not a physical practice but much deeper. They’re not trying to fly using the physical body, they’re practicing samyama. This is being able to have a distinct thought while in samadhi. More:

          This thought is listed in the yoga sutra. The person is not trying to fly. They’re doing samyama on the sutra. The outward expression is an effect. It’s also a powerful way to purify as it blasts many of the nadis and enlivens consciousness, producing joy.

          If you try to fly or manipulate, you quickly exhaust yourself and can cause injury. In the practice, you gain what’s called a kailash or shield and are protected.

          The texts describe stages to the result. The first stage is the body shaking. The next is ‘hoping like a frog’, what the video showed and most common. Next is floating, then being able to move on light, then full control.

          The next siddhi listed is mastery over the elements and these seem closely related as the flying siddhi is about the relationship between the body and space element. This isn’t denying gravity, it’s working on a different level, much as quantum physics is different than classical.

          It’s called yogic flying because that’s the practice, not necessarily the effect. Somewhat like Tesla sells a “Self-driving” package for their cars that’s not quite there yet.

          It may seem widely far-fetched but I’ve seen many brief displays of further stages. And I’ve seen people hit ceilings and walls at high speed and ‘bounce’ off. It’s typically practiced on foam for more than comfort.

          There are also a number of historical examples of full yogic flying from around the world. I’ve written about Milurepa, for example. The Vedas are full of examples. Early explorers in Australia witnessed many flyers. Hu San Gong. St. Joseph of Cupertino. Rabi’a al-Adawiyya al-Qaysiyya from Basra. Even early missionaries to N. America reported same.

          The key thing to note is that in a dark age, we only see the body as capable of doing anything. We have to lift through the collective to do otherwise. Our potential in a golden age is far greater. We’re rising toward that. Most long term meditators have not gotten past stage 2 but long term, as the collective rises and is purified, that will change. That’s our history and future.

    1. Hi Bez
      Big topic. In the vast cycles of time, consciousness goes through “seasons” of clarity. The yugas, the Ages, and the Great Year are various ways this has been described. This is true for all beings as expressions of that.

      The devas are expressions of the process of experience and so experience time differently than we do. Their yuga cycle/ context for time is much longer. I explore some of this here:

      The higher devas don’t lose their sense of being expressions of Divinity but do lose the experience of Divinity itself. Thus you see some of the old stories of, for example, Shiva considering himself the highest.

      Mid-range devas can lose touch even with their active sense of Divinity but because of their long lives, remember they have known it.

      Lower devas, more involved with the mechanics of our universe and more mundane functions, get lost in form like we do.

      There are many variations within that, depending on where they work and how close they are to source. I talked about one of the ways they’re waking up here:

      Of course, I’m not a deva, so this is third party impressions.

  2. Jeff

    When I meditate outside, it’s like I am enliving silence in everything around me. That karma seems more profound than anything else we could do on the surface of life.

  3. harrison snow

    Thanks for this article David – like many others who have been on one of MMY’s special courses in a conflict-prone region the metaphor of being part of a energetic laundromat is apt. While a group with a spiritual focus can generate a strong field that supports purification I’ve also noticed that just about any group in the corporate, social or family world will also foster various forms of stress release. Most of it is the projection of unconscious and unresolved material on to some “other.” The conscious mind comes up with reasons or justifications and then acts them out in ways that deepen the conflict; fostering more stress and disruption instead of less. Our methods for conflict resolution try to promote listening and understanding but neglect the unconsicous source material and the “fractral affect” between individual, family, social/organizartional, and collective conflicts and the related traumas. Your post should be part of the training of conflict meditators so they work with a bigger and more wholistic perspective.

    1. Agreed, Harrison. Good observations. Although it’s worth noting that the effect of group practice in consciousness is far more powerful than the usual self-reinforcing collective dynamics. This is why all the transcending and then awakening is shifting the tide. 🙂

  4. AB

    Hi David
    For the “dirt” to not stick no matter the environment does one need to be at level of Brahman? More and more I notice my body and the energy parts shifting and changing with any kind of environment or person without me wanting to, just by itself, sometimes it sticks that way.

    1. Hi AB
      No, stage of development is the perspective from which we experience. Dirt sticking is more about identification and resistance. Even with Self Realization, the core of what resists falls away. But it then depends on how well we engage that, heal, and integrate. Some take longer to wind down habits of mind and resistance. Depends on the softening and healing done prior too.

      I’ve met awake people that are very “clean” and people in Brahman who still have arrogance and other identity issues.

      I would ask if you’re becoming more sensitive to your environment or becoming more conscious of what was already there. Being aware of the energy around you is useful. The issue is taking it on aka identifying with it. Then it gets sticky. We all tend to have areas or flavours that are more sticky for us and areas that are less so. Relationships, or money, for example, or pride of knowing.

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