vāstu śāstra - Science of Architecture



The whole universe is made of five elements and the elements have a way of settling under universal principle whether it is an atom or a galaxy. As depicted in the above diagram, water element naturally gravitates towards NE, fire towards SE, earth to SW and air to NW. Space element is a sheer absence of other four elements and is the most mysteriously obscure amongst the five elements.

When you cut a magnet, it becomes another holistic magnet. Similarly, when a piece of land is separated by natural or man-made boundaries, this piece of land acts as a separate entity with energies realigning within. The whole concepts of vāstu śāstra (Science of Architecture) is based on this fact.

Hence, in the countries with longer established civilization, like India, China and Greece each lot has a prominent brick or rock fence and within the boundaries, special care is taken to ensure the elements are settled, stable and at ease. Even the sacred places, that are build under the principles of Āgama śāstra, shares the same basic principle.

Living Being influenced by the forces of nature 

Apart from the settlement of the elements, these lots or the buildings are constantly polished with beneficial energies and also affected by the malefic energies. The magnetic energies of the north and the solar energies of the east (ultraviolet rays) exert positive, life-supportive influences, while the south (infrared rays) and the west (gamma rays) exert influences that are not life-supporting. Hence in established civilizations, buildings were designed to receive the abundant, life-enhancing energies from the north and east, while shielding their inhabitants from the gamma and infrared rays of the west and south. The positive energies from north and east should flow around the structure without obstruction and collected in the southwest area of the building, where they support the health and well-being of the inhabitants.

Four important corners and their significance:

North East (Water): This corner needs to be open, unobstructed, least heavy in the whole lot. Hence it is beneficial to have a street emerging in this corner, not having tall trees and digging the ground for well, pool, etc. The common side-effects of not adhering to these principles is that, it draws the water element from the bodies of the inhabitants. As as result, they will suffer lack of attention, unable to recall from memory faster, won't be able to accumulate knowledge easily. If you try not drinking water for a day, you'll realize all these symptoms experientially.

Since humans are made of 72% water, this corner is given most significance in vāstu śāstra. Hence, inside a lot, have more vacant space in this corner and inside a building ensure this is the mostly vacant room, like a living room.

South East (Fire): This corner demands heat. It is ideal to have a fire pit, centralized heaters, geysers, stoves, etc. Hence it is also ideal for kitchen, if it is being used often. In the whole lot, this corner needs to be relatively hotter. Or else, it'll start pulling the heat from its occupants. Once your body heat is obstructed, it immediately impacts the digestion and triggers a domino effect on the health of the inhabitants. Simple things like keeping this corner red and lighting an ever-lasting lamp will fulfill the needs of this SE corner.

South West (Earth): SW corner needs to be heaviest and well blocked in the whole lot or the building. The earth dug out of NE to make that lighter, can be dumped here to make SW heavier. The earth element in our bodies gives the stability and resistance to environmental changes. If this corner, by any means is not fulfilled with its demand for earth, it starts pulling the earth element from the occupants. This makes the occupants undergo huge swings from weight, wealth, moods to relationships.

Earth being second most largest ingredient in humans, this is an important corner next to NE. To quench its needs for earth, SW is apt for heavy and obstructing, like tall and thick foliage trees, gym, taller walls, rock dumps, etc. A hill on SW is a natural boon. When you take USA as a lot, SW beaches are the most rockiest with natural hilly landscape.

North West (Air): Air element gravitates towards this corner. Making this a perfect corner for septic and restrooms. When the air demand of NW is not met, the occupants contribute their air and it impacts their psyche. Air is the insulation between the neurons in the brain. When this insulation is impacted, possible short-circuits results in unexpected psychological outcome.

Other Four directions and their significance:

Every individual is equipped with different levels of attributes like courage, righteousness, intelligence, etc. Their astrological birth charts are the indicators of those. Their dwellings will often be in alignment with it. The influence of the dwelling units on such attributes cannot exceed the max and cannot go below the minimum allocated to the individual. vāstu śāstra thrives to provide the max possible so as the inhabitant gets the most out of their life.

North (Air and Water): Good psyche and knowledge results in good Intelligence. Hence this region is responsible for the intelligence of occupants.

East (Water and Fire): Sun raises at east. Solar energy is absolutely essential for any form of life on earth. Where it is available automatically, it is taken for granted. Apart from this, there are other influences sun exerts on humans. To name few, the level of confidence and righteousness are dictated by sun.

South (Fire and Earth): This region dictates the courage and initiative of the occupants. When you see a normally courageous person move into a new home and acts cowardice, you can confidently say that the south end of the home does not comply with vāstu śāstra.

West (Earth and Air): A stable west with earth in south and air in north denotes greater levels of patience and discipline in the occupants.

These is the foundation on which the whole vāstu śāstra is built on and by no means what i've mentioned consolidates the depth of vāstu śāstra. This is a deep science that has been fading away from practice due to several fraudulent individuals trying to profit from the misery of unsuspecting victims. Understanding the basic science behind it and ensuring these general principles are met in you dwelling place, weather it be home or work place or a temple is ample enough to get the most out of this life.

More you learn about it, more you can hone your knowledge, but beware, all these anicient śāstras are bottomless abyss. If you embark on a journey to find the bottom, you'll be absolutely lost and become an annoyance to the people around you. So always keep a checkpoint on when and where to stop the research, implement and move on.

Yoga: 10. Siddhis (Psychic Abilities)


“janma auṣadhi mantra tapaḥ samādhijāḥ siddhayaḥ" - Patanjali
Siddhis may be attained by birth, the use of herbs, incantations, austerities or samadhi

Siddhis are what is commonly considered superhuman psychic abilities. Stories and myths of such abilities are prevalent in all civilizations, irrespective of the geographical limits. "Siddha(r)" is an indian term that refers to the mystics, ancient scientists, meditators, alchemists who transcended the bounds of physical realms and are not susceptible to the laws of nature. These siddhas in their journey have crossed the stages of wisdom, enlightenment, attainment of all the 64 siddhis and reach the state of "siddhahood". Amongst all the 64 siddhis, eight of them are classified as the greatest. They are;

Attama (Ashta Maha) Siddhis - Eight greatest psychic abilities bestowed upon the very best, the crown of the crop yogis.
1.) Aṇimā: reducing one's own self to the size of Kalapa (atomic size)
2.) Mahima: expanding one's own self to an infinitely large size as universe
3.) Karima: becoming infinitely heavy
4.) Lehima: becoming almost weightless
5.) Prāpti (Vyapiyam): having unrestricted access to anywhere in the universe
6.) Prākāmya (para-kaya-pravesam): Taking over other bodies and consciousness
7.) Iṣṭva (Eesathuvam): possessing absolute lordship and providing to anyone in need
8.) Vaśtva (Vasiam): the power to subjugate all, controlling other beings

Every single super-natural phenomemon ever heard of, culminates into one of these 8 siddhis. Only those who attained these attma siddhis can be term'd as Siddhas. They are never self-proclaimed, but the already recognized siddha attest them. We can safely say, 99% of the human population have never met and will never meet (in this lifetime) any of these siddhas.

Apart from the aforementioned attama-siddhis, there are Atta-karma Siddhis, which are attained on the journey by the sadhakas (practitioners). They are;

Attakarma (Ashta Karma) Siddhis - Eight Siddhis that can inflict strong karmas upon self when exercised. So these are to be never exercised unless the necessity is dispassionately justified and only upon guru's grant to do so.
1.) thambanam - freeze the target until released
2.) vasiyam - control someone to ones own desire
3.) mohanam - inflicting infatuation on someone towards self or anyone
4.) vithvedanam - inflicting quarrel and separating two people
5.) aakrusanam - taming others. This is often used on animals, the wild ones
6.) paethanam - nullifies one's thoughts and leaves them psychologically ill
7.) uchaadanam - establishing shield around self and anyone
8.) maaranam - induce death to a targeted living being

Again, these siddhi's are only attained by adept yogis. By the time they reach this stage, their morality and intelligence is so refined that the possibility of misuse forfeits naturally. Yet, there have been cases of such misuses, when a sadhaka reaches such state through shortcuts, the important thing to know is, every such action inflicts pasya karma (strong and sticking) which not only takes away their siddhis but also puts them back in the backward journey.

Other Siddhis attained on the path... 
1. Freedom from hunger and thirst.
2. Freedom from the effects of heat and cold.
3. Freedom from Raga-Dvesha (likes and dislikes)
4. Doora Darshan, clairvoyance or Dooradrishti. (Remote viewing)
5. Doora Sravan, clairaudience or Doora Sruti and Doora Pravachana. (Remote sensing)
6. Mano-Jaya, control of mind.
7. Kama Rupa: The Yogi can take any form he likes. (Shape-shifting, Morphing)
8. Parakaya Pravesha: He can enter into another body, can animate a dead body and enter into it by transferring his soul.
9. Iccha-Mrityu: Death at his will.
10. Devanam Saha Kreeda and Darshana: Playing with the gods after seeing them.
11. Yatha Sankalpa: Can get whatever he likes.
12. Trikala-Jnana: Knowledge of past, present and future.
13. Advandva: Beyond the pairs of opposites.
14. Vak-Siddhi: Whatever the Yogi predicts will come to pass by the practice of Satya, Prophecy.
15. The Yogi can turn base metal into gold. (Alchemy)
16. Kaya-Vyuha: Taking as many bodies as the Yogi likes to exhaust all his Karmas in one life.
17. Darduri-Siddhi: The jumping power of a frog.
18. Patala-Siddhi: Yogi becomes Lord of desire, destroys sorrows and diseases.
19. They get knowledge of his past life.
20. They get knowledge of the cluster of stars and planets.
21. They get the power of perceiving the Siddhas.
22. They get mastery of the elements (Bhuta Jaya), mastery of Prana (Prana Jaya).
23. Kamachari: (S)He can move to any place he likes. (Bi-location)
24. They get omnipotence and omniscience.
25. Vayu-Siddhi: The Yogi rises in the air and leaves the ground.
26. They can point out the place where a hidden treasure lies.

These are several other categories of spiritually elated individuals. These people are often misunderstood as siddhas.

Sadhus (சாது) are individuals embarked on the spiritual journey. Basically, they acknowledge that the whole world doesn't revolve around them, but they play a minor role in the play of the cosmos.

Yogis (யோகி) are those working with a goal to merge their individual consciousness (soul/jivatma) to the univeral cosmic consciousness (paramatma). They can be doing kriya yoga (asanas, pranayamas, mudras, bandhas), karma yoga (doing their work without attachment), gnyana marga (gathering and reflecting on the knowledge of total consciousness) or the raja yoga (turning inwards, meditating, dhyana and samadhi) or bakthi (complete surrender, accepting everything that comes their way and having fixed their thoughts and feelings on their deity or guru with an unshaken firm attitude). They are all collectively known as yogis, as long as their goal is to merge (yog) their jivatma with paramatma.

Tapasvis (தவசி) are people committed to onerous kriyas, leveraging all the ausadhis (herbs and minerals), constantly purifying their elements (earth, water, fire and air) and performing several rituals. These are people on the fast track toward attainment (the yog - successfully guided the soul to join the cosmos). They need an attained guru's guidance to even practice such things.

Gnyanis (ஞானி) are people attained enlightenment through Gnyana Yoga. Meaning they have experienced samadhi following the path of knowledge. When these gnyanis prefer to take disciples and guide them towards enlightenment, they are called Rishis. Most of the religious preachers and spiritual leaders of the world, claim to be in this categories. Are they true to what they claim, is upto every individual to decide for themselves. I neither acknowledge nor deny their claims.

Munis (முனி) are attained yogis, who choose to be alone and contribute quietly to the universe. They don't take disciples.

All these above mentioned can be living in solitude or living amongst the society. These is no qualms about these people leading a married life, parenting children, their eating habits, health conditions, et al.

Thuravi (துறவி) - Those who leave the organized society and migrate to solitude, often himalayas or other such hills or any sacred place, when their living conditions are overwhelmingly hindering their spiritual journey. Buddha and Mahavira left the society and became Thuravi. They attained their enlightenment and Buddha we all know is the definition of the term Gnyani and Mahavira ended up as Muni. If they ever attained siddhahood is never known.

What differentiates these spiritual people from common man is that they are constantly,

1.) resolving the karmas (கன்மம்). Basically, settling down more karmas than they accumulate everyday.  samskaras (karmic blocks/veils) are released at faster phase.
2.) as a result of the above, their veils of illusion (மாயை) are being constantly torn down.
3.) and their ego (ஆணவம்) is getting dissolved day-by-day.


What differentiates these spiritual people from siddhas are;
1.) Siddhas don't stop at attaining enlightenment.
2.) Siddhas are not distracted with attaining siddhis (superhuman abilities).
3.) Siddhas attain kaya-karpam (காயகற்பம்) - Their body doesn't undergo the usual cell decay.
4.) Siddhas have absolute control over all the physical elements.
5.) Siddhas join the quorum of siddhas and work towards betterment of the universal consciousness.
6.) They would not intervene in the cosmic play, but take up the responsibilities of cosmic flow.

Anyone with the right destiny (prāptam) and on the right path would be surely blessed with a siddha encounter. Till then take this information with salt-n-pepper and keep this page between fiction and superstition in your library.