Inspiration & Guidance for Spiritual Awakening

Archive for the ‘Kundalini Essays’ Category

When Kundalini Arises

When kundalini energy arises there can be bliss and chaos as the body adjusts to a new vibration.
To the extent you can relax and let go into the energy it is likely to feel better and be less troublesome, but the truth is the function of kundalini is to clear out all the old debris of your history, so any unfinished emotional or psychological issues are going to arise to be made conscious and resolved.

When an initial arising moves all the way through the body there can be great joy and ecstasy and an altered world view that makes you feel completely at one with the world. This is an experience that will pass in a few hours or a few days, and most people feel confused and sad when they return to the felt sense of the former self. This energy is not about becoming high and joyful and staying there. It is about transformation. Just as any reconstruction begins with a deconstruction, so does personal transformation.

The activation of kundalini is an invitation to awaken to your true nature, that which lies beneath the psychological self you have constructed since birth to fit in and cope with the life you were given. Each of us has a unique set of circumstances because our history varies, but whatever is held in the body/mind will be subject to this transformation process, until at some point consciousness is able to be known in its primal and original form, as the vast and empty spaciousness in which all is one potential.

We cannot make this happen because the “I” that would try to manage it is not able to go along on this journey. The I we believe ourselves to be is a collection of assumptions, beliefs, feelings, impressions, opinions and memories that are in continual movement (chances are you do not think now the way you did at age 5 or age 20, because more data is in the system an old patterns died). “I” is a verb, not a noun, not a concrete and immovable object. It is a sense that holds a collection. This is greatly challenged in an awakening process and so you feel unstable, uncertain, and sometimes afraid of how you are changing. You are entering into a mystery, where perceptions change, emotions can be erratic, and you often feel unfamiliar to yourself. But along with this can be great waves of love, blissful sensations, insights, and moments of stillness and peace. A few people may hear an inner voice that says something like “Peace be with you” or “This is all okay”. Just remember that all that arises passes on, and that the reason that most of what arises happens is so that you can see through it and realize — oh this too is not what I am.

Learn to be present in the moment where you are and not dwell on old patterns and memories. Learn to bring energy into the heart which will deepen the sense of appreciation and gratitude for the present moment. Learn to accept with equanimity what you were in the past with all its shadow and challenges and be curious instead of afraid about who you are becoming. Don’t let the mind jump to conclusions. Ask it to relax and just see what happens instead of projecting possible scenarios.

Consider moving more from intuition and from the heart rather than the old ways of decision making. Take care of your body and stay in alignment with your deepest truth and authenticity. These are the ways to support the process and eventually return into a lasting presence and inner peace.


Kundalini Challenges & Graces

Posted initially in April 2013, as a response to a question of how to survive this arising, especially when one feels challenged in their ability to work.

Kundalini arising is an invitation, truly a doorway, into knowing what you are, and realizing or remembering the true nature of existence. This is why the energy is called divine. It is the energy of the source of life that enabled you to exist as part of creation, and when it activates it is possible for consciousness to shift in such a way that it recognizes its true nature, apart from all the thoughts in your head, and patterns in your life that you previously thought were who you are. Some people have a glimpse of the infinite, the truth that consciousness exists beyond any boundary, long before they have a kundalini arising. But most people seem to have the arising of this energy of the life force prior to the awakening of consciousness. It supports them in becoming Self-realized.

Naturally kundalini energy is frightening to the mind of many people, because it challenges our belief in the uniqueness of our own identity, and it is beyond the understanding and the cultural perspective of the mind. It feels sometimes as if you are losing your mind and your understanding of who you are, it disrupts and reorganizes your energy field, and it may even cause physical discomfort as it moves through areas of your body that have latent physical issues or stored emotional content. It can look and feel “weird” and if the body has experienced physical or sexual abuse,or traumatic emotional and physical events, it can cause the release of the old memories held in the contracted energy field. So for some people this awakening is a more challenging event than for others.

You might think of kundalini awakening as a clearing and transitional process that is designed to enable an open, clear and compassionate perspective of life and death, and to feel the essential bliss and connectedness of all things. For this to happen all the thoughts, points of view, memories and stored traumas in the body need to be released. It is not that they disappear, but rather the identification with them falls away. You cannot do this yourself. It is done through you by the energy, in its own timing. If you have done clearing through therapy or body work in the past this can be useful, because there is less “stuckness” in the old conditions and more acceptance of letting things go. And usually with therapy one learns to release self-judgement, which is an important prerequisite in this process of awakening to what you really are. Develop compassion and nurture yourself as you go through this process.

Our true nature has no judgment and no resistance to life. Waking up is not an abandonment of life as it is, but an expansion, so that consciousness sees the inner-connectedness, the oneness, underneath all the diversity of expression in the world.

Without judgment there is still a responsiveness, a deep feeling can move through related to compassion for the suffering in the human condition, and action can emerge spontaneously, the form having great variations among different people.

Great laughter and joy can arise in seeing clearing how we have missed the truth for so many years ,and ignored the clear evidence of our own eternal consciousness. Even in the joy we can still feel strong compassion for the confusion that all humanity shares.

Unfortunately, not everyone who awakens kundalini will awaken to Truth. There are many cul-de-sacs in the process caused by cultural and community biases and ignorance of the process, fear of the unknown (which one must enter without reservation at some point), the tendency to regress into self-doubt, or attachment to old patterns of being that are not released. One needs to learn to listen to their deepest inner truth, to take care of their physical and emotional needs, to surrender completely to the energy flow, to be willing to love unconditionally — one is invited into many experiences the mind might resist. Some people feel like they may be losing their sanity or even their life. There are many fear-based stories about kundalini which sometimes amplify these doubts and fears. And there are risks to health if one is pushing the process , continues using recreational drugs, or ignores basic health habits. It helps to have some objective support and guidance in case you become inflated, disoriented or overwhelmed by emotional shifts. (all of which may happen for limited periods of time). It helps to have a spiritual orientation and basic self-respect and love.

Some people are concerned because their financial situation does not support them and they feel unable to work. It is helpful if one has a lifestyle and workstyle that are compatible for their spiritual life, that sustains them through these transitional times. If this is not available they can only seek inner wisdom to find a way through life support by using available food pantries and community dinners, volunteering service in a meaningful way, living in yogic communities, or returning to families for help. In most cases if one is unable to hold their regular job, a small amount of work that feels aligned with one’s true capacity is helpful. The body/mind will benefit from some kind of focus and balance during this awakening. This is not about abandoning the body/mind or the personal life you have been given, only giving up identification with it as “all” you are. You are still obligated to care for it. This is your vehicle for liberation.

Poverty during a kundalini process may be no worse than poverty for a myriad of other reasons. For hundreds of years Zen monks who sought awakening chose poverty, although they were in a community that respected this option and helped to feed them. I cannot say why one person is thrown into this situation and others are not — some might say it was a choice from a previous life, or a piece of karma to be finished, or a teaching about a certain perspective of life, or a pattern or belief that needs to be relinquished. It may be caused by apparent outside circumstances, (all of us can find societal reasons), but it is your mind that attaches a personal meaning to it.

I was once in a workshop with a nurse who reported a very traumatic childhood including early rape and pregnancy, prostitution and living on the streets before her world shifted in her twenties and she was able to move into school and a career. As I felt into the trauma of that life and youth what I saw was that she went through that so that I would not have to. Each of us fills a spot in a massive and eternal mosaic of life experience. There is no ultimate reason or why explaining why some have such difficulties — it is just so. Humanity is still in an evolutionary stage, and has not yet embraced unilateral kindness and health. There is suffering and we all are part of it. Waking up will only make it better. Kundalini arising, and its greatest gift, a clear perception of the nature of existence and the releasing of our identification with thoughts that cause suffering, will, as the Buddha said, wake up the world (a piece at a time).

If you are truly in this process it will not let you go (although you can resist endlessly) and keep inviting you into your deepest potential for knowing Truth.