Someone once asked me to put together a list of what I consider the top-ten principles and practices of Andean mysticism. It took a while for me to get to it, but here it is. These are the precepts and energy dynamics that I think are absolutely core to the tradition through the Inkari and Waskar lineages in which I was trained. Of course, there are others aspects of the tradition I could have chosen, but these are, to my mind, absolutely fundamental to living the tradition. It’s impossible to order them from most important to less important, because everything is integrated. So this list should be understood as horizontal in nature of importance rather than as a vertical hierarchy.
Also, I see the Andean mystical tradition as a path of conscious evolution—a path toward becoming a sixth-level human being. So while there are many energy dynamics and other aspects of the cosmovision that are fundamental to the tradition, I have chosen the ones I feel are of the highest usefulness for our development into the most glorious, joyful, fully realized human beings we can be. My selection is based on how this tradition helps us accumulate the personal power to achieve this lofty goal.
1. Energy is just energy with no moral overlay. There is nothing at the energetic level of the cosmos or of nature that can harm you, so you never have to protect yourself from energy. Although human psychology drives people to say and do things that range from hurtful to evil, the energy of creation is beyond moral overlay. Everything in the material world is made of llanthu kawsay—the light living energy, and at that level of energy you want to be able to interact with all the diverse expressions of energy in the world and cosmos. This is what it means to be a master of your poq’po, your energy body.
2. Intention moves energy, and the core energy dynamic and natural “law” is ayni. Ayni is energetic reciprocity in myriad manifestations, from your ability to absorb and radiate kawsay as the life-force energy, to how you treat others and expect to be treated by others, to how well you are able to manifest an intention or desire. Everything is connected and in energetic interchange, whether you are conscious or unconscious to those energy dynamics. Your ayni is dependent on the clarity of your intention and the state of your energy body (how much sami versus hucha you have), so work your poq’po to release hucha and use whatever strategies resonate with you to increase your level of self-awareness. The most important aspect of improving your ayni is to “Know Thyself” as both a human being and an energy/spiritual being because ayni is inherently personal to your own state of energy.
3. Hucha is only slowed sami. Hucha is not bad, negative, contaminating, or even evil energy. It is sami (the light living energy), but it is sami that humans (through our less than perfect ayni) have slowed down so that it feels heavy. Hucha is sami that has lost some of its transformative power. Our emotions, inner conflicts, self-delusions, projections, and such (both conscious and unconscious, as in the “shadow” aspects of the self) cause us to degrade our ayni and so create hucha. Over time, having a lot of hucha will lessen the quality of your experience of life.
4. Saminchakuy is the primary energy practice. To release hucha—to speed it back up to its natural state as sami that moves unimpeded and so is highly life-enhancing and transformative—use saminchakuy, which is a kind of pichay, a sweeping of your poq’po. This hucha-transforming technique is the core daily practice for restoring the integrity and energetic coherence of your poq’po. As you reduce hucha and increase sami, you will increase your capacity for ayni, come to better know yourself, and can more easily and swiftly evolve toward your fullest expression of self.
5. Use hucha mikhuy to cleanse relational hucha. For heaviness you feel in relation to other people, or events and situations (even from your past), use hucha mikhuy to cleanse the flow between you and the other person or situation. The perception of hucha is always in relation to the state of your own energy body, so release your judgments about and projections onto the other person and deal with the relational energy as you perceive it from your current state of being. You can also use hucha mikuy on yourself to perform a deeper “cleansing” of hucha from your poq’po.
6. Harmonize your three human powers. Understand the three human powers of yachay (reason, intellect, thought), munay (love under your will), and llank’ay (action, ability to do things in the world, to use opportunities). Most of us are overdeveloped in one or more of our human powers and underdeveloped in one or more. Both our over-reliance and under-reliance on one or a few of our human powers prevents us from living as a fully developed human being. To be all that we can be, we have to use everything we are capable of to its fullest extent and in the most integrated, coherent, and harmonious ways.
7. Develop the capacities of the nawis. Understand your ñawis not only as your perceptual eyes, but also as full perceptual organs. Each allows us to develop a different human capacity: qaway, the ability to see holistically and to understand reality as it really is rather than as you would like it to be; rimay, expressing your human powers, especially how you communicate your thoughts and feelings; kanay, knowing who you really are and developing the personal power to live as who you really are; munay, love and compassion beyond the needs of the self offered with awareness and purpose; khuyay, passionate yet mindful engagement in the world; atiy, knowing the state of your personal power and using it well and at the right time, and also bringing your impulses under your will.
8. Weave the chunpis to integrate your ñawis. The ñawis are not “hooked up” as an integrated system until you weave the belts of power, called chunpis. By weaving the chunpis, you can mediate power more efficiently and productively through all your ñawis instead of only through one or a few at a time. This increases your self-awareness and enlarges the scope of possible energetic and psychological responses available to you, so you create less hucha and have more sami.
9. Understand and work the four core energy dynamics. There are all kinds of energy flows in the universe and world but, to my mind, there are only four primary energy dynamics you have to learn to work or mediate in relation to yourself: an energy is either compatible or incompatible with your own state of energy, and you are always in masintin or yanantin relationship with an energy. You can only know the world perceptually in relation to yourself, and how an energy feels to you may say more about the state of your own energy than about the state of the other’s energy. You want to learn to be in harmonious energetic relationship with everything. So when you feel an energy that is incompatible with yours, use your tools (saminchakuy or hucha mikuy) to make the relational flow compatible. Also pay attention to energies that are or feel similar (masintin) to or different (yanantin) from your own. You can create hucha in any interaction, but you are more likely to when you feel an energy is different from yours. There are all kinds of complex energy dynamics within and among these four “relational flavors” of energy, but you can reduce hucha, and thus improve your ayni, by attending to these four energy dynamics. Mediating these four types of energy within yourself and between yourself and others is working to create a tawantin (harmonizing four factors into a harmonious whole), which is the highest state of energy relationship.
10. To integrate the self, energetically connect your heart and Inka Seed. You are yanantin—you are both a physical being and an energetic being. Your heart is your humanness. Your Inka Seed is your connection to Taytanchis/God, to the energetic realm of your origin. When you integrate the energy of your human heart and energetic Inka Seed, so they function as a synergistic system, you can develop a deeper sense of the fullness and wholeness of your beingness. Through intention, connect your Inka Seed with your heart using a seqe, or flow of sami in an energetic cord. This connection will foster the process of phutuy, the flowering of the complete self.