02 July 2015

Energies of Evolution


If you are having experiences of energy winding or rolling up your spine, creating involuntary spasms, and rippling in strange ways through your body, you are possibly one of thousands each year experiencing what is known as a kundalini rising or awakening.  You may feel frightened or disoriented by this non-ordinary shift, but if you can relax with it and understand it as simply a dynamic of your own evolution it can become a treasured ally on your spiritual path.

When we understand that all of creation is formed as molecular structures, mostly space and energy manifest in a multitude of forms, it becomes easier to meet the empty/spaciousness and the enhanced vibrational energies that appear in our bodies, and face all the changes they invite.

There are many reasons people suddenly have these shifts and awakenings.  Often an intense spiritual or energy practice will open the body to the heightened energy known as kundalini by the ancient founders of the yogic system.  Sometimes an intense concentrated period may activate this sleeping power, even such innocent practices as biofeedback, meditation, prayer, love-making, or the charge projected by the touch of another person who has this awakened energy. In the thousand reports I have collected over the last 30 years many people write of spontaneous awakenings, sometimes in moments of great interior stress,  or while using plant medicines or psychedelics, or while sitting in silence at retreats.  So if you are feeling as if your energy field has jumped from 110 to 220 or even 2200 you are not alone, although unfortunately you live in a culture that is totally unprepared to understand the power and potential of this experience.

If your experience plunges you into fear and anxiety, if it explodes you into ecstasy, or if it hits the brain centers that produce imagery you will likely be afraid you are losing your mind, and if you meet up with the wrong therapeutic model others will support this interpretation.  But some part of you will know this is real and it is meaningful, even while the mind freaks out about it. If you can just be curious and open instead of afraid and contracted this will help it calm down considerably. You need to nourish the witness within you, that which is simply aware.

Kundalini energy is an aspect of your own life force.  It is what happens when the normal pranic energy field or bioenergy of the body is infused with a powerful rush of energy from the base of the spine, the feet, or occasionally pours down into the body through the top of the head.  Naturally you are startled.  Even people in spiritual communities who have longed for awakening for years can be both astonished and terrified by this new dimension of interior activity.  It was a naive assumption that spiritual awakening would be a sweet, simple release into peace and harmony and improved character and life would be forever blessed.  It is true that awakening leads ultimately to peace and harmony, but it does so by stripping away every identification we hold dear, and releasing every old bit of suffering and confusion, all of which was held in our minds, bodies and subtle energy fields.  It tries to release all stressors and heal all wounds, in the process freeing us from our assumed self image and personal history.

I have come to see kundalini as essentially a clearing out process, and then an opportunity to live from clear seeing and presence, which doesn't change the content of life itself, but profoundly impacts our relationship to it.

Whether kundalini activation is sudden and traumatic, or slow and gentle, it is almost always a factor in a full spiritual realization process.  It may initiate the process of consciousness awakening, or it may fall into place after an initial shift of consciousness into the recognition of It's true relationship with what we might call Source or Universal Consciousness, (that which cannot truly be named, but we try!)  This might be called the non-dual experience, and to the mind it might feel empty and unbounded while to the spirit it is felt as unlimited spaciousness and dissolution into the whole (or some such image).  Utimately awakening is the stable recognition of what is awake in every moment here and now, and not the dramatic experiences, visions, insights, dramas and traumas that may accompany it for awhile.  All experiences will pass.  More will appear. Life is awakeness moving through experiences. Awakening helps us to take it more lightly, to feel peaceful even when we're not, and to find beauty in the every day forms we encounter.


If you are in an energy awakening process and would like to be part of a small-group weekend workshop in Ashland, Oregon, planned Aug. 28, 29 and 30 please let me know. I offer this program once every year or two and will be happy to send you more details.  My email is kundinfo@mindspring.com. You may also find helpful my new books "The Kundalini Guide" and "The Awakening Guide", available on Amazon and Kindle.

07 June 2015

Kundalini Internet and Residential Programs Available


To Explore Kundalini and Meditation I am offering several programs this summer and Fall,
drawing from my books  "Energies of Transformation""The Kundalini Guide" & "The Awakening Guide".
Of special interest to my readers will be Living With Kundalini, available in two programs, an internet gathering or as a residential weekend in Ashland, Oregon. 
The internet program will meet the 1st and 3rd Fridays of September, October and November from 12 noon to 1:30 Pacific time.  You may join us from anywhere in the USA and Canada, and much of Europe if you make adjustments made for your time zone. The fee is $50/month for 2 sessions a month. To register email Bonnie at kundinfo@mindspring.com.  Here are the details:

This Zoom Internet program will be available to no more than 20 people who wish to learn more about the kundalini process, share information and concerns with others who are in this process, explore ways to help the process become more calm and effective, and feel less isolated in the changes they are experiencing. This will be a live meeting where you can meet others through the web who are in this awakening process.

There will be six initial sessions, each including a 30-minute talk and an hour of sharing on a video meeting hookup through Zoom. You will be given a code to connect easily into the Zoom video chat room. Zoom is free for you. Topics will include an overview of how the energy works in the subtle body, how and why awakening happens, the categories of experience that are reported in this process, the challenges and the blessings of the process, and ways to move from energy chaos into spiritual realization.   Those who wish may be paired with a partner for conversation between sessions, suggestions will be made for writing, and your questions may be submitted for shared discussion.
30 minute talk and 1 hour of sharing

If you work with people in this process and you would be interested in a second group for doctors, psychologists, LPC's and other professionals please let me know as I may set up a second series for professional training.
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LIVING WITH KUNDALINI: A Weekend Workshop
Aug.28, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., August 29 and 30, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Shanti River Center, 300 E, Hersey, Suite 2 in Ashland OR.           
$200. fee
You are invited to come to Ashland and attend a weekend workshop with Dr. Bonnie Greenwell designed to help people understand and gain positive tools for living with the activation of kundalini energy.
The opportunities in this small group include
·    Discussing your concerns and questions with others who understand because they have had this experience.
·    Hearing both yogic science perspectives and modern interpretations of the inner revolution triggered by the kundalini process
·    Finding clarity about the function and purpose of this awakened energy
·    Learning tools for helping your mind, body and spirit live more comfortably and harmoniously with spiritual awakening.
·    Discovering the grace of fulfillment in the kundalini process.

I am a licensed professional counselor with a Ph.D. in transpersonal psychology, and also a non-dual teacher in the lineage of Adyashanti.  I have specialized in and trained therapists to work with spiritual emergence issues for over 30 years. This workshop is  opportunity to understand the changes of energy that accompany awakening and meet others who are also in this process. Private sessions will also be available for an additional fee the day following this event if requested.
Ashland is a delightful town to visit with theater and a lovely park and many places to stay, including camps, hostels, hotels and many Bed and Breakfast places.  You would fly into Medford OR, about 15 miles from Ashland.and should arrange your own housing.
To register send me an email at kundinfo@mindspring.com, and I will respond with further information.
_____________________________________________________________________
OPENING TO GRACE MEDITATION RETREAT
Camp Latgawa in the mountains of southern Oregon
Friday Sept.25, 10 a.m. until Sunday Sept. 27, 2 p.m.
$265 including shared room (2) and all meals
This weekend is an opportunity for silence and for deepening of your spiritual intention and  meditation practice, for self-reflection and  for falling into openness and grace. The emphasis will be on meditation, and finding inner stillness and presence.

After our initial introductions and opening Friday lunch we will hold silence  until Sunday at lunch, except for satsang sessions where you will hear dharma talks with non-dual teacher Bonnie Greenwell and be able to ask questions.  Interspersed with guided and silent meditations, there will be free time for you to journal or paint, walk the labyrinthe, hike to a waterfall, or sit for additional meditation time.  Qigong will be an option before breakfast in the morning.

This program will be held in a rustic camp and beautiful mountain setting, about an hour from Medford airport in Medford, Oregon.  You are asked to bring a sleeping bag and pillow.  We will arrange shared transportation from the airport if needed.

For further information about the camp or retreat site or to register, contact the organizer, Becky Hale, (541) 601-3084 or bec.hale4@gmail.com

Science & Non-duality Conference
       I'm pleased to be included among the speakers at the Science and Non-Duality Conference at the Hayes Mansion in San Jose next October 22- 25.  This is a great event bringing together many non-dual teachers (several from Adyashanti's lineage) with scientists from varied disciplines to explore the commonalities of our perspectives of consciousness.  For information and to read about all the speakers go to www.scienceandnonduality.org.




17 February 2015

Living With Kundalini




One of the greatest challenges for people who have activated kundalini energy is anxiety related to the odd, stressful, embarrassing and occasionally painful phenomena that may arise.  Since anxiety makes this experience more difficult, here are a few notes on ways to release the anxiety and find more balance and harmony in the midst of this process.

1. If you have a history or trauma or abuse the energy may be triggering sensations that felt invasive and painful in the past.  Emotions may arise even though you do not recall the cause. Sometimes the body stores memories that the mind does not recall.  If trauma is part of your life history find a therapist to talk through old and difficult history.

2. Make a ritual every morning for when you awaken instead of lying  in bed worrying – get up right away – and decide what would lift your spirits such as  play some music you like, take a shower, start an indoor garden with pots of flowers you tend, dance, talk to a good friend, sing, give yourself a mantra such as I am free, whole, available to love and enjoy my life– you create it.  You may feel resistance to lifting yourself out of the anxiety and have to force yourself at first, but if you want to be well you have to learn to live in a new way.  You were happy for a while so you have that capacity and you need not to let the fearful side of yourself (the pain body as Eckhart Tolle calls it) overrule you.

3. One of the truths that awakened people know is that No Thought is True! Thoughts are just neurons firing, usually based on past conditioning.  You need to question any negative or fearful thought. It is just the mind carrying you away to a place that is hurtful.  When you have a fearful thought, Can you try to bring your attention to the moment instead – that mean to bring awareness into the heart and feel your feet on the ground, look around the room and feel you are there right now, and that nothing bad is actually happening, ask what is needed right now and move into the here and now.  Put something uplifting or beautiful in each room of your house.

4.  If you do not already meditate, learn to meditate or sit in silence, bring awareness into the heart or belly. Find the natural stillness deep within.
There is a good meditation article and DVD available by adyashanti at www.adyashanti.org.

5.  If you are dealing with excessive heat avoid caffeine, spices, wine and other alcohol and honey.  You might get a book on Ayurveda that has a test you can take to tell you your body type, and see if there are food recommendations for that type.   Usually people in this process tune into their bodies to see what feels right regarding eating meat.  When you have indigestion look at what you ate that day and see if you can avoid it for awhile.
To calm heat and energy try taking a bath with Epson salts in lukewarm water, going for a walk or even a jogging run, putting attention into the heart and imagining love flowing out on the exhalation, or distracting yourself with some activity you enjoy.

Try a cooling breath – stick out tongue and curl it.  Breath in through the mouth over the tongue. Close mouth and swallow, Slowly exhale through the nose. Try this 2 or 3  times when you feel the heat.

6.. Find something to do each day that you love and  look forward to.  Experiment.  It might be art, baking something new, connecting with a special friend, a dance or gentle yoga or deep relaxation class – when energy awakens it draws us to live an authentic life – to be really true to ourselves.

7. Do not place attention on any fearful message passed on by someone else – avoid projections that are not based on deep wisdom and experience related to this process. Be careful about who you follow on the internet – if they are trying to recruit you or frighten you they are not working in your best interest.  This is not being caused by some outside energy or anything wrong you have ever done.  It is your own life force which is in a process to help you become free of your old patterns, identifications and suffering.

8. Insomnia is a common problem associated with kundalini.  There is more energy in the body and it tends to become active when you are trying to relax.
However in our culture millions of people have insomnia – mental preoccupation and worry is a major factor. Here are  a few general rules for managing  it.
Have a completely dark room.
Do not use computer, phone or electronics for two hours before bed.
No caffeine.
No sugar in evening and eat lightly at night.
Some people do find some good wholegrain bread is helpful in evening.
Count your breaths backward from 100 to 0.
Go to bed at same time each night.
If you lay awake a long time, just get up and do something else such as read a comforting or boring book for a half hour. (Or scrub the bathroom floor – this will be a disincentive for staying awake!)
Get more physical exercise.
If you are worrying about something write it down and put it aside.
Listen to a relaxation tape.  Sounds True has an insomnia set of DVDs that has general information and relaxation meditations.
Try Tranquil Sleep – a melatonin mix that is over the counter at health food stores like Whole Foods.  It’s a chewable tablet. Take it 2 hours before bedtime.
Ask your partner  to give you a food massage – or share this with him or her.

9.  Your interest in sex, food and socializing may go through radical ups and downs.  This is common during this process depending on where the energy is working.  It is a time to explore autonomy – really following your own inner guidance about what is best for you.  These ups and downs will level out eventually.


There is more guidance for people in this process in my new books The Kundalini Guide and The Awakening Guide, available on Amazon and Kindle.  This experience is a natural correlate of spiritual awakening, and as you learn to live with it you are likely to find bliss moments, and surprising insights arise.  Learn to ride the waves and come to understand what spiritual awakening is really all about.

08 December 2014

Kundalini and Awakening

Whether you have activated kundalini energy through practices, meditation, or for no logical reason you can imagine, the most important thing to know about it is that this is a passage into  a new understanding of who and what you are. Perhaps the caterpillar feels just as shocked when it finds itself in a cocoon, nor knowing it was it’s own making.

Kundalini is a sanscrit word meaning coiled, an aspect of the prana or life force in every human body that is said in yoga science to be held at the base of the spine, an invisible energy coil holding the entire energy body in stasis while we live, and freeing itself from our forms when we die.  If it erupts during our lifetime it brings about a dramatic restructuring of our energy field and our consciousness.

This transformation of energy can feel blissful in some bodies and stressful or terrifying in others.  How we experience the changes depends to a great extent on how psychologically open and flexible we are, how traumatic or unhealthy our previous lives have been,  whether we have old injuries or toxins that need to be released from our systems, whether we have an understanding or spiritual support in our lives, and many other factors.  It helps if we know some techniques to balance and release energy, release stress from our lives and we learn how to take good care of our bodies.

Kundalini can feel  stuck in various parts of the body as it works to undo old conditioning or heal wounds, physical or psychological.  It can cause shaking, jerking,  vibrations, heat flashes, itching, tingling, appetite shifts, insomnia, mood swings and many other strange symptoms.  Since many of these conditions can also be signs of other issues or illnesses it is useful to consider factors that can be the source of a sudden arising of  kundalini energy. Usually a first arising is noticed, either as a dramatic force of geyser-like power moving up, or a swirling rolling movement through the body, or a sudden forceful rising from the base into the belly, heart or throat area. More rarely it opens through the entire body and seems to pour out of the crown of the head. Or it can be a steady jerking unlike anything you have felt before.

Usually kundalini awakens following energy or meditation practices, done seriously and consistently for a long period of time. It can also follow a near-death experience or a traumatic emotional loss in which you go the depths of  grief or despair.  It can arise when there is great devotion to a spiritual being, or while being  enraptured by chanting or focusing on inner sound.  Sometimes contact with another person with active kundalini will cause it to stir and activate.  It may happen following a profound shift of awareness, where you  momentarily do not feel your self to be your old identity, but rather detached awareness, presence, no one in particular or part of everything.

Kundalini is the subtle energy accompaniment to the shifts in conscious awareness that are known as Self-realization.  We are molecular structures infused with awareness, with consciousness that moves through these structures and moves our thoughts, feelings, sensations, knowledge and understanding from one point to another.  We have come to be identified as the condition of our body and mind – a certain race, sex, nationality, family style, medical history, education and emotional conditioning. Some of these characteristics are in our DNA, and many are part of our learned identity, formed of the particular opportunities and experiences we  have accumulated.  We each have a unique identity and it feels very separate from everyone else’s.

All of these aspects of identity are invisible, known to us as thoughts and flows in our energy body.  (No one will ever find your identity in an autopsy.) It’s as if we are a computer shifting all of this data around.  When kundalini opens and begins to move through the system it is challenging and disorienting,  as it clears away much of our identity,  opening our body to a different kind of experience, one we might call prior to identification.  It will eventually lead us to know ourselves as awareness without identity, which is a knowing that feels eternal in nature, and free of the stuck patterns in our history.  It can be very frightening to feel something in us letting go of us.  In western cultures we tend to believe this must be a sign of mental illness, but when kundalini is the catalyst it is a sign of spiritual awakening.

You will not lose your ability to know who you are, or how to behave, or where you live.  You will likely lose your attachment to it, and to anything in your life that is not wholly authentic for you.  So if you are in a toxic relationship, a job you hate, or a lifestyle that is not serving you these things will press upon you until you change. (It is a myth that if you are spiritually awake you can tolerate anything).  On the other hand, whatever arrives in your life for you to deal with you will address with more dispassion and clarity, whether it be change, illness, or loss.  Awakeness is simply being present where you are without resistance, but with greater clarity about how to respond.

Awakening does not mean you will have no moral compass.  It is just a different frame of reference – based on what is needed, and the understanding all of us humans are One in this creation together.  It becomes literally painful to steal, lie or harm another.  If you hold on to those types of old patterns you simply lose the awakeness and sink into a much darker place.  This is possible.  More than a few so-called spiritual teachers have succumbed to it.

You can’t use awakening to enhance the ego, and keep the awakening.  The part of you that will grasp to be someone special is not the true nature but the egoic nature, and if it gains a foothold you will be caught in a half-way world like limbo, having the energy and awareness to touch a few people but without any sense of an inner stability, and lacking  the clarity, love and compassion to help you navigate wisely in the world.  I do not believe such guides are internally at peace for if the egoic mind is ruling the life this is just is not possible.  The true nature known in the awakened state is at peace with itself and the world.  It is a natural relationship.  It feels pain when physically ill, and sadness over losses and the great disasters mankind brings upon itself, but it does not linger.  It knows how empty human preoccupations are and how spacious and limitless consciousness is.  It knows we are This.

So eventually if you have awakened kundalini this is where it is trying to go.  Along the way you may experience fear, challenge, beauty, joy, greater vitality, exhaustion, feeling out-of-your-body, and returning into a new enlivened relationship with it. Almost anything can happen.  It helps to trust the process, to see fear as only a random energy you need not put attention on, to take good care of your body, to find ways to be more grounded, to be willing to know yourself as energy and spirit, to sit in stillness or in nature every day.

I hope if you are in this process you will check out my two new books “The Kundalini Guide” and “The Awakening Guide”, self-help books based on conversations with many other people just like you.  When I first wrote about kundalini there was no web, and only obscure books spoke of it.  Today it is popping up all over the web. Not everything you read on the web will be accurate. Do not let it frighten you, and do not run off and join a cult.  Listen to your heart and gut and rest in the truth within yourself, and do what you must to support your life in this amazing and fortunate process.


If you have questions this blog is a place to ask them.  Please include your age and any spiritual or energy practices along with your question as it helps me better understand why you may be having the symptoms you describe.

02 September 2014

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.

25 August 2014

Kundalini: Fascination & Resistance, Control & Letting Go



Question from a Seeker:
I’ve been spiritually seeking for a number of years and one thing that really seems to bother me is this fascination with Kundalini. I was fascinated with these Kundalini sensations because of the orgasmic oneness and union that accompanied them.  Recently I'm also interested in working on my humanness and cleaning up all the messes associated with that. I am less interested in mystical states of permanent bliss or unity. The problem is that my ego/mind has started tempting me to have Kundalini experiences and I’ve been feeling this energy in my body (particularly in my face area), which is difficult to avoid. When I follow this energy and try to keep my mind concentrated on it for too long, I get panicked and it feels like my body is going to explode/die if I continue, so instinctively I stop and try to move on. But the energy keeps interfering with my ability to enjoy life and to live freely. This seems to be the main thing that keeps the ego sense of me alive and well (the other thing is probably a fear of utter despair and depression at seeing my illusions shattered,) I recently found that if I stop trying to control these energies I feel better.  Is it better to just let them happen or to try to stop or manage them?

Response:
Kundalini is the life force experienced as a subtle energy running through the body and you are right in your discovery that the easiest way to live with it is to relax and let it move as it seems to want to.  Usually if you just lay down on a bed when it starts it will shake you up for awhile as it removes stresses out of the system and opens up stuck areas in the body, and then it stops after a few minutes, or feels just like a quiet hum or vibration the rest of the time.  It can feel blissful (but won't always) when you let it move and cause a lot of discomfort if you contract against it.  It can also be scary when it is intense but if you can substitute curiosity and openness for fear it will go much better for you. It is not especially useful to concentrate on it or try to intensify it, much better to kind of shrug it off and wonder what the energy might be trying to clear out now (you won't often know).

It is also very useful to clean up any "messes" in your life, practically speaking.  Stress, toxic habits and relationships, stuck anger and resentment and other divisive personal issues give the subtle body lots of issues to work out and make energy releases, emotional upheavals and even pain more challenging in this process. Think of kundalini as trying to make you very open and free internally, keeping all your channels open, and having to clear out any negativity or suffering that is in the way.

Other than "cleaning up your life," the ego, which is just your mind identifying with your thoughts about it, needs to let go of trying to control this or any other aspects of the spiritual process. You are new to this process and it is here to support shifts and changes in consciousness that will allow consciousness to awaken to itself -- there is nothing in it for the ego, which is why resistance comes up. If you are on a spiritual path and do regular silent sitting or meditation or even prayers of gratitude, this will further support an awakening.  If you are doing lots of energy practice, using drugs or following shamanic, breathwork or other intense practices you may raise more energy than you want to handle and more mental confusion along with it.  You might get some value from reading my two new books "The Kundalini Guide" and "The Awakening Guide" that are designed to help people understand and support the awakening process.  You might benefit from listening to the talks at www.adyashanti.org as Adya is a wonderful teacher of awakening. This process will interfere with your fun-loving life and ultimately demand you align yourself with the most authentic and natural path within you.

You will learn to find peace and happiness within, but first any beliefs and illusions that contradict what is true will be challenged until you see them clearly enough to let them go. 

The longing of the heart to know truth or know "Who I am" or know God -- however you would phrase the longing that has drawn you into spiritual practice -- is an important aspect of awakening.  Trust that rather than your thoughts about what it means.  It is a mystery just how we awaken and what we discover, one the mind cannot grasp.

It is rare for someone to stop this process, although occasionally it will stop temporarily if the major stressors and preoccupations of living become overwhelming.  But learning to understand and support it make it a lot less challenging and open up more opportunity to find bliss and joy as the body and spirit become more open and alive.   

20 August 2014

When Energies Arise


When the energies of kundalini first arise many people do not recognize them as an accompaniment to the process of spiritual realization.  These energies curling up the spine or raising heat and jerks and strange body movements sometimes occur during meditation, or following yoga or Qigong or breathwork, and even happen spontaneously without any discernable trigger activity.  Even in those who are doing practices that encourage spiritual awakening they are often not recognized for what they are -- the subtle energy field clearing away stress and old patterns and opening channels for the awakening of consciousness.

Our bodies are our vehicles for consciousness and awareness to experience itself in the flow and experiences of the human condition.  The life force caught hold as we were conceived and moves through us throughout our lives. This force is both energy and consciousness and when we awaken spiritually it intensifies and expands and shifts our perception and experience of what we are and how creation appears. This shift is called awakening in non-dual circles.

It can take months and years for a kundalini process to mature, as the energy may wind slowly through the body, rise and fall intermittently, and flush out emotional, physical and psychic issues that have been dormant or repressed.  So it is disruptive and frightening for some people.  The fear is often because of the strangeness and the unfamiliarity of the random movements and experiences.

Fear creates contraction and this promotes more releasing of stress, so the sense of difficulty can be increased.  I suggest if this is happening to you that you substitute the energy of curiosity for fear, and relax into what is happening, as this can help the releasing in the moment to pass through more quickly. Fear is just a thought followed by energy.  It will not serve you in this process.

Although for some people kundalini awakening is primarily gentle or energetically blissful, it can be challenging for others to accept and live with the challenges of this process, and nearly impossible to make it stop once the energy has opened as far as the throat chakra. Before then stopping all energy and spiritual practices, eating root vegetables and protein, or doing grounding practices like gardening may help the energies calm down a bit. There can be brief energy releases that are known as prana-tattva (in yogic science) that happen only once or rarely -- this is a release of a blockage or stress held in the body and are not the same as kundalini arising. If the energy stops completely it was originally not a full activation but just the preliminary pranic releases.

If you are in the throes of this experience you may find my books  The Kundalini Guide or The Awakening Guide helpful as they were written for  those who need to understand the changes that support spiritual awakening and offer methods that help it happen with less confusion and discomfort.   Yes, awakening brings bliss and insight and an internal sense of being love -- but for this to happen everything that is not so peaceful needs to be released.  If you have longed to know Truth or what is God or what this human existence is about and followed spiritual practices to get there, you need to learn to accept with equanimity the process of transformation.