shrI shyAmol rAm’s exposition of mahAchInakrama

While mahAchInakrama is a not a path of tantra usually followed by the shrauta-smArta ritualist, it was once secretly practiced by several, including brahminical paNDitas. Some believe such paNDitas practicing mahAchInakrama where fallen brahmins, often associated with the nAstIka matas, but others believed that they had reached a state of “siddha-hood” that made them transcend the sacral and sacrilegious state. shrI shyAmol rAm whom we introduced earlier was an exponent of mahAchInakrama and his upAsana deities included mahAchInakrama-tArA, ekajaTA, and a form of bR^ihaspati known as ma~Njughosha. Some details of his texts and sAdhanas were recorded even though these sAdhanas may no longer be practiced. One notable collection was the sAdhana-shata-pa~nchAshikA that was collected by the great vAmAchArI and kApAlika, kR^iShNapAda. He then gave it to his equally great student shAshvatavajra. He then gave it to his student abhayAkaragupta who transmitted it to a nAstIka student in the nalanda university and he himself settled in the hills of himAchal pradesh where he had other students.

mahAchInakrama-tArA is also described as pretArUDhA. She stands on corpse of man slain in battle, in the pratyAlIdhA pose, with the left foot extended and the right drawn back (some also call it the vIrabhadrAsana). She holds in her right hands a sword and a cleaver and in her right hands a blue lotus and a skull. She of dark blue complexion and has sharp long fangs, a beautiful tongue that she sticks out and 3 eyes. She has well-formed and firm breasts and her tawny hair is tied up in a single knot. She wears a tiger skin skirt, eight snake bands, a garland of severed heads, and the following ornaments of bones: a shvetAsthi paTTa- a white bone hair-band; asthikuNDala, asthi-kaNThAbharaNaM, asthimekhala (waist-band) and asthiruchka (bracelets). She utters a terrifying laugh.

The yoga of mahAchInakrama-tArA is done thus:
-The sAdhaka may choose an appropriate shmashAna for the purpose and retire there at night with his dUtI.
-There he sits on the pa~ncha muNDa seat with his dUtI and meditates upon 3 vajras radiating rays pervading the 3 states of existence.
-Then he draws in the rays and meditates upon the empty void of spanda and mutters the mantra: oM shUnyatAj~nAna vajra svabhAvAtmako .aham |
-Then he sees the red syllable aH in the sky, which transform into a red lotus.
-Then he sees the white syllable tAM on top of the red lotus, which then transforms into a skull cup.
-Then the sun appears in the middle of the skull cup. In the middle of it appears a sun-spot that becomes the dark colored bIJa hUM.
-Then the bIja hUM transforms into a cleaver, which itself is adorned by the hUM bIja.
-The cleaver then transforms into the sAdhaka performing the yoga.
-The sAdhaka then identifies completely with mahAchInakrama-tArA. It is critical that the sAdhaka has transcended ahamkAra at this point else the sAdhAna could damage him.
Then he mutters the mantra oM hrIM strIM hUM phaT and enters japa.

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