by Janet Ward, E-RYT Lead Teacher 200 Yoga Teacher Training
Welcome to the Kundalini Yoga Experience. It is the year of the Snake, a perfect time to dive deeper into the mystery, magic, meaning and music of Kundalini energy. This bio-electric elemental creative life force energy is in everything. In every person it has its own intelligence, its own unique fingerprint frequency. Kundalini yoga and meditation can connect us deeply to our inner guru. Yogi Bhajan who brought this technology westward from India in the late sixites was a Sikh and in the Sikh religion there are no more gurus. The only guru is the Guru Granth Sahib – the holy book of the Sikh religion which contains wisdom from many traditions and is a beautiful testament to peace, love and greatness. When Kundalini is awakened there is an experience of self- knowledge revealing an inner light. Paradoxically, this experience of light can include a surrender to what Christians call the dark night of the soul. In surrender to this spiritual trial we ultimately find the union, the oneness of Yoga and we become more sensitive, refined and intuitive.
There are myriad ways to activate Kundalini energy; Yoga, pranayam, meditation, visualization, chanting, dancing, Shaktipat (the touch of a master) , fasting and other austerities, koans, self-inquiry, sex. We are fortunate to have techniques to ground the radical experience of Kundalini awakening. As Shakti awakens and enters each chakra she sets it spinning. Its elements dissolve and she rises up. Chi, Ki, Ruach, Manna, Ache, Elan Vitale, Fuerza Vitale, Holy Spirit, Kung, Kukulkan, Quetzalcoatl – these are all names for the life force energy. The ancient Mystery Schools of Egypt, Greece, Rome all agree – the serpent was once our powerful ally. Moses threw down his staff and it transformed into a serpent power that parted the Red Sea. The snake was seen as a symbol of regenerative power with the ability to cast off death.
This great serpentine power has vibrated herself into the countless forms of our world; she has vibrated into us! We live in an ocean of vibration, each one of us a river of vibrating atoms; our minds a river of thought vibrations; our hearts vibrating frequencies of emotions that colour and create our life experience. As water can become vapour or ice , consciousness expands and contracts – creating the material world through contraction and limitation. Kundalini energy is the reserve power left over after the creation of the universe. And so she sleeps, the Goddess Kundalini, curled up and coiled at the base of the spine. As she sleeps, our potential sleeps. Kundalini has involved herself from pure consciousness into mind, ether, air, water, fire and earth. She awakens and we retrace the steps of creation- starting with the earth element in Muladhara, the root chakra. This is how we evolve. Awareness evolves from earth through the elements, chakra by chakra back to Source Energy and an experience of vastness, expansion, freedom. As Iyengar noted, freedom is the only one of our desires with the power to unite us. However we proceed, whatever techniques we employ, we are always given just as much Kundalini as we can hold.
What can happen in a Kundalini Awakening? Kriyavati – the spontaneous performance of asana, bandha, mudra, pranayam. Or Varnamayi – spontaneous chanting of mantras or bij (seed) sounds, or animal sounds, or poetry or sutras often in unknown languages. The scriptures of Yoga list shaking, happiness, Hair standing on end, laughing, crying, visions, sounds, electrical energy, love, intuition, levitation ( Saint Teresa of Avila needed fellow nuns to help hold her down during deep prayer) and a regal poise known in Kundalini Yoga as Akaal Moorat – the embodiment of infinity.
Kundalini Energy is Power and power, said Emerson, is the first good. Powerlessness can drive a person to attempt to steal power in the form of money, property, energy, time, trust, reputation. When we feel real power we can take action. We connect to a higher quality of energy and convert it into action that benefits ourselves and others now and in the future.
The Kundalini Yoga Experience is a journey to empowerment. Real spiritual empowerment is a combination of Bhakti (devotion and a sense of the sacred) and Shakti. Shakti is the rising, serpentine power of Kundalini. From Rumi: “Your body is woven from the light of heaven. Are you aware that its purity and swiftness is the envy of angels and its courage keeps even devils away?”
Join us and experience the power of Kundalini for our next Teacher Training Intensive, you don’t have to be a Yoga Teacher to attend, just a passion to learn more. Find out more here!