The Krittika (also known as Pleiades or M45) is a brilliant cluster of six stars in the Vrishabha (also known as Taurus) constellation, representing the six Krittika dieties (the six mothers, the wives of six of the seven sages (sapta rishis)). They are known for nursing Lord Murugan (aka Karthikeya). Whether this is true or not is irrelevant. The point is the ability of these stories to take the mind to lofty heights, thus never allowing us to deviate from keeping in touch with the cosmic nature of the universe (and taking the definition of God, universe, consciousness, matter, energy, space, time, etc across much larger boundaries).
The six Krittika stars in the picture are the ones with a distinct halo/ring around them. What’s in a star? A lot. From the material point of view it is “just a bright ball of flame, pure energy”.
According to western scientists: Matter is nothing but condensed Energy (E=mc2). Yogis take it one step further: Matter is condensed Energy, and Energy is condensed Consciousness. Hence everything is pure consciousness.
Everything is manifested consciousness, and stars represent a pure, almost unmanifested aspect of the conscious realm, very little tainted by conditioning (as you go higher and higher up the different stratas or lokas). It is a window into another sphere or loka, higher realms of consciousness (as in the seven lokas – bhuh, bhuvaha, swaha, maha, janaha, tapaha, satyam). It’s likely that spiritually enlightened sages could directly see the Kritikkas, not as stars, but in their full form as divine beings, in Pure Consciousness form, the Kritikka dieties.
In material/physical terms the stars maybe light-years away from us, but once one acknowledges that time and space are relative phenomena, distance is irrelevant. In the spiritual realm, the Krittikas are not far away, but within, and directly accessible. Thought waves pass through them, just as all thought waves pass through Pure Consciousness; as in when Krishna makes the statement, “all thoughts pass through Me”.
Not just stars
Today modern science tells us that stars are a porthole connecting one universe to another (in particular stars of particular type exhibit this more strongly, such as black holes and neutron stars). Theory of multiple and parallel universes may be hard to swallow for people, but the numbers/results are doing the talking. It forms the basis for Hindu philosophical thought. Mass is condensed energy, energy is condensed conscious.
The same can be said about other heavenly bodies, such as planets and moons. The planet Saturn for example is not just a dense ball of matter floating in space. It is said to represent Shani Conscious, visible as it is projected into our limited three dimensional view of the world.
The same with the Moon. Science can explain away moonlight as light from the Sun reflected. In reality, what science considers as “reflection of light from the Sun” may well be an apparent manifestation of a higher dimensional play. In fact, gravity was found to have nothing much to do with Newtons Law of Gravity, but higher dimensional bending of space-time fabric of the universe that causes what appears to be gravitational “attraction” in our dimension.
The Moon represents Siva Conscious and the Sun represents Narayana Conscious. The cool liquid light, the Soma energy from the Moon works on our intuition and manas, while the bright energy light from the Sun works on our buddhi and actions. In tantra, the left-hand and right-hand currents (ida and pingala) of the Kundalini are treated as the Lunar and Solar currents. The Ida current rules over our nerves, hormones, emotions, intuition, and the Pingala current rules over our circulatory system, heart, intellect.