This is part XX of kundalini series. It is better to stay with heart chakra for a longer time. Staying with this chakra enables us to understand the universal love. This universal love undergoes transformation in the heart chakra into universal consciousness. Let us understand more about universal consciousness. Individual consciousness merging with the consciousness of our fellow beings is called universal consciousness. Individual consciousness means your state of alertness combined with your psychological (mental or emotional as opposed to physical in nature) result of perception (knowing through senses), learning and reasoning in which you are fully aware of yourself and your situation. When we are not able to understand our own consciousness, how we are going to understand the universal consciousness? To understand our own consciousness, we talk about meditation, yoga, kundalini, Brahman, atman so on and so forth. Our failure to understand the consciousness is due to our concentration on theory part of consciousness. It is to be experienced to understand. Let us try to understand consciousness by an example.
You are holidaying in Switzerland. You are staying in ABC hotel. The climate is very cold. You are standing under a tree. This is the situation in which you are placed right now. What is your consciousness now? Your mind is telling you that you are in Switzerland. How the mind conveys this to you? Mind gets its inputs through your sensory organs. Your eyes see the natural scenery. Your eyes identify the hotel in which you are staying. Mind also receives information through your skin about the cold weather. You like the scenery around you and you are engrossed in the nature's beauty. Thus your mind receives all the information it needed, analyze and processes them and induces you to feel and act. First it affects you emotionally and makes you feel happy. Next it makes you to learn about the cold climate, the nature's beauty, etc. It also makes you to reason out that during cold climatic conditions, you need to wear woolen clothing. It makes you to be aware of the situation. This awareness is about your surroundings. What is happening within you? Mind makes you to feel happy. You are now totally alert and aware about yourself (state of your joy and happiness) and the situation (being in Switzerland, its cold climate and its natural beauty) you are in. This is how individual consciousness works.
As long as your mind concentrates on mental, emotional and physical awareness that are subject to modification, you are with illusion or maya. Your happiness and joy will be modified if you leave Switzerland, a modification involving your mental and emotional plane. The scenic beauty of Switzerland is subject to modification, as the trees will grow in size or may perish. What you see today would have undergone a change tomorrow. This is physical modification. So what you feel (mental modification) and see (physical modification) is subject to modifications and therefore not permanent. This is called maya or illusion. What you see, feel and realize beyond the objects of modification is the subject that does not undergo modifications at all, is Brahman. Then what is universal consciousness? The principle of individual consciousness applies to universal consciousness also.
Instead of your consciousness, it is the consciousness of everybody including you. But you are not able to realise the universal consciousness because your ego (your consciousness of your own identity) prevents it. You do not want to consider everybody on par with you. Sometimes, you consider yourself either as superior to somebody or inferior to somebody. That is why you are not able look beyond the minds of others. There is only the reality that exists beyond mind. Universal consciousness is not to understand the minds of others. You have to go beyond the universal mind to realise the Brahman. This Brahman is the same that exists within you, within me, within every living being in this universe. This is the true knowledge of universal consciousness. You are now closer to self realization.