Mircea Eliade - The Heat of the Mystic
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Mircea Eliade – Shamanism Archaic techniques of ecstasy
Prajapati creates the world by ‘heating’ himself to an extreme degree through asceticism; he creates it, that is, by a sort of magical sweating. The ‘inner heat’ or ‘mystical heat’ is creative; it results in a kind of magical power that even when not manifested directly as a cosmogony, creates on a lesser cosmic plane; for example, it creates the countless illusions or ‘miracles’ of the ascetics and yogins – magical flight, negation of physical laws, disappearance etc.
‘Mystical heat’, which is documented in Vedic texts, holds a considerable place in Yogic tantric techniques. This ‘heat’ is induced by holding the breath and especially by the ‘transmutation’ of sexual energy, a Yogic tantric practice which, though quite obscure, is based on pranayama and various visualisations. Some Indo Tibetan initiatory ordeals consist precisely in testing a candidate’s degree of preparation by his ability, during a winter night snowstorm, to dry a large number of soaked sheets directly on his naked body