11 November 2010

Hello to my readers,
I have just begun a new blog focused more generally on non-duality and awakening, and I plan to keep a schedule of Ashland events and other programs I may be involved in on that site, so do check it out if you are interested in my ramblings. The address is www.shantiriver.wordpress.com.

This blog is a good place to send me general questions related to your kundalini process. It's helpful to me when you ask questions if you include general information about your spiritual practices, your age, and specifics about any particular problem you are inquiring about.
If you are interested in filling out a form for a personal assessment you can write to me through my website www.kundaliniguide.com and I will send you the form. I expect to be busy however until after the Christmas holidays so there may be a delay in doing the assessments until January 2011. I will keep up with blog comments and questions however on both blog sites.

I am beginning to explore the differences I see between enlightenment as it is said to happen in eastern traditions and as it happens to westerners, because I see many inconsistencies in the process in the way it opens here and the way it is described in eastern spiritual texts. I suspect this is because of the differences in how it is approached in the west, with little true preparation, without strong guidance, and within many distractions that are unavoidable in the typical western lifestyle -- work, family needs, the bombardment of media, the pace of life, diet, social pressures, etc.
In the eastern perspective one lives a very moderate life totally dedicated to hours a day of energy practices or meditation, within the context of complete trust and obedience to a teacher or guru, with a very bland diet and daily physical work within the setting of an ashram or monastery. I cannot say what the statistical odds of realization are in such a setting, or if they are any better than here, only that in such settings there is a projected gradual movement of the psyche toward an enlightenment that is stable, may include siddhis (temporarily), and leads to life of devotion, service, inspiration and/or peace. In the west people may have a glimpse of truth, for a brief or extended period of time, but generally this is followed by months or years of facing the internal tendency of the ego structure to reassert itself, to become engaged once again in all the mundane activities of the human struggle, and to enter into a resistance to being where one is. This resistance may take the form of regretting one has not stayed in what seemed an expansive and interconnected state of consciousness, or resistance in the form of wishing things were different in one's life. Sometimes there has been an illusion that awakening would make life perfect or oneself perfect, and one must see through this illusion before one can regain a sense of freedom. No matter the form it takes, most westerners will enter a long phase of seeing the separate self arise again and again, before awakening becomes stable.