Posted by: samandal | July 13, 2010

Subtleties of the Heart

Díyáfat-i-Kalimát, the Feast of Words

“In Súfí meditation the knower pronounces a dhikr in each breath.”                 (Michael Sells: Mystical Languages of Unsaying, page 107)

The Naqshbandí-Mujaddidí sub-order in South Asia stresses direct, unmediated contact with the Súfí pír. The science of the subtle centers (latá’if) is the locus of their spiritual system, as assimilated from the Kashmírí Hindí tradition: just as the material body possesses a physical anatomy, the imaginal body (corpus imaginalis) possesses a spiritual anatomy with subtle centers akin to the nerve centers of the material body.

The five basic subtleties are located in the chest (sadr), synonymous with the mind in the heart: these subtleties comprise the heart (latífat-i-qalb), the spirit (latífat-i-rúh), the secret (latífat-i-sirr), the hidden (latífat-i-khafí), and the most hidden (latífat-i-akhfá). In addition to the five basic subtleties, the irrational or insistent self (nafs-i-ammára), the secret of the secret (sirr-i-sirr), the rational or reflexive self (nafs-i-nátiqa), and the throne (kursí) [which is synonymous with the firmament (‘arsh)] comprise the full complement of nine subtle centers within the imaginal body of each and every person. Further information is below; the colors and locations vary.

The nafs-i-ammára is located below the navel. It is associated with násút, the color blue (or black), the múládhára-cakra (which corresponds to the pelvic plexus), the svádhisthána-cakra (which corresponds to the aortic plexus), and the manipúra-cakra (which corresponds to the celiac plexus).

The latífat-i-qalb is located below the left breast. It is associated with malakút, the color red, the element fire, the sense of sound, the Sun and Mars, the prophet Ádam (and Bahá’u’lláh), and the anáhata-cakra (which corresponds to the cardiac plexus).

The latífat-i-rúh is located below the right breast. It is associated with jabarút, the color yellow, the element air, the sense of sight, Jupiter, the prophet Núh (and/or Ibráhím or Zartosht), and the anáhata-cakra.

The latífat-i-sirr is located above the left breast. It is associated with láhút, the sense of touch, the color white, Mercury, the prophet Músá, and the anáhata-cakra.

The sirr-i-sirr is located between the sirr and the khafí. It is associated with láhút, the color black, the prophet ‘Ísá (and Máryám [Umm Abíhá]), the anáhata-cakra and the vishuddha-cakra (which corresponds to the cervical plexus).

The latífat-i-khafí is located above the right breast. It is associated with láhút, the color green, the element water, the sense of smell, the Moon and Venus, the prophet Muhammad, and the anáhata-cakra.

The latífat-i-akhfá is located at the top of the sternum. It is associated with háhút, the color black (or blue), the element earth, the sense of taste, Saturn, the prophet Hawá’ (and the Báb), and the vishuddha-cakra.

The nafs-i-nátiqa is located in the center of the forehead. It is associated with háhút, the color orange, the prophet Siddhártha, and the ájná-cakra (which corresponds to the optic chiasma).

The kursí (veiled) or ‘arsh (unveiled) is located at the crown. It is associated with háhút, the color violet, the prophet Krsna (or Melek-Taús), and the sahasrára-cakra (which corresponds to the limbic system).