Kundalini Yoga

Complete Kundalini

Kundalini Awakening

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'Kundalini Mata Shakti, Mata Shakti Namo Namo' (Kundalini, mother energy, mother energy I call you, I call you)

Different cultures have handed down the traditional wisdom of there being a World Tree inside the human body. Ancient Egyptian sources, as well as the mystical writings of Jewish rabbis, talk of the importance of the spine as being the root containing an awesome amount of life force and consciousness. A complete teaching for the care of this, our 'own' Tree of Life, comparable to the Taoist alchemical tradition of ancient China, has been gifted to us by Yogi Bhajan as Kundalini Yoga.

The word kundal means 'spiral', 'coil', or 'to be coiled up'. The word Kundalini describes the highest possible human energy state. It refers to a god-like energy, which has been psychically seen to lie curled three times around the lowest energy centre in

Fig. 5. A well known picture from antiquity shows deities, in particular feminine ones, served and befriended by snake energy. Three Greek coins from the fifth to the first century bc: on the left you can see the goddess Demeter riding her snake-drawn carriage; in the centre, goddess of the underworld, Persephone; and on the right an unknown goddess from Crete, under a date palm.

Fig. 5. A well known picture from antiquity shows deities, in particular feminine ones, served and befriended by snake energy. Three Greek coins from the fifth to the first century bc: on the left you can see the goddess Demeter riding her snake-drawn carriage; in the centre, goddess of the underworld, Persephone; and on the right an unknown goddess from Crete, under a date palm.

each one of us, like a serpent, or - as Yogi Bhajan described it -like the curling lock of the beloved. This energy centre is called the root chakra. The word chakra means 'wheel' and 'energy centre'.

If this energy begins to move and spontaneously starts to ascend without preparation, the transformations that can result can be hard to cope with. But if we allow this energy to grow like a tree, by, for example, practicing Kundalini Yoga, it empowers the human soul to consciously and increasingly manifest into our everyday lives.

The classical description of when and how Kundalini energy is awakened is full of tree symbolism. This begins with the two basic energies of the human being: prana and apana.

As a tree draws nourishment through its roots, and light through its multi-stemmed crown, so we draw prana into ourselves mostly as breath through the complex structure of our lungs (which are made up of as many tiny alveoli as there are leaves on a tree), and also through food, and even through our sense organs.

Apana describes the energy that we get rid of, and in so doing give back to our environment, just as a tree gives out different gases, dead leaves and other substances that then become food or compost for other living species. In humans, apana is therefore mostly found in the intestines where the metabolic residues are turned into compost. Apana is also in our urine and sweat, and in our exhalation; interestingly it is also in much of what we give out as words, and even thoughts.

Both of these energies, prana and apana, flow up and down the human body in two delicate channels, which curl around the spinal column in spirals, just as the channels that carry the subtle energy currents of trees are described by psychics. The life-enhancing energy of prana flows through pingala, the sun channel, which starts at the bottom of and to the right of the spine. The expulsive energy of apana flows through Ida, the moon channel, which begins to the left and at the bottom of the spine.

According to Yogi Bhajan, these two energies don't meet as long as the person remains fixed in their everyday consciousness. They continue to move up and down, and flow past each other, but never normally come into contact with each other.

Through yogic techniques such as a combination of breathing (prana) and pelvic floor exercises (apana), the two energies can be stimulated to meet one another. If this happens, an intense inner light in the region of the navel appears. This is the so-called white fire. It is not hot, but is very bright. When this light reaches a certain intensity it flows down two channels, called reservechannels, towards the root chakra at the bottom of the spine. This is how the three and a half coils of Kundalini energy that lie around the root chakra are awakened.

This unified energy then starts to rise up the Sushumna central channel. Its clear ascent can be obstructed by what is known in the ancient teachings as the three knots or Granthis. The first knot, Brahma Granthi, is connected with the first and second chakra. It is caused by problems dealing with the material world and the search for sensual satisfaction. The second block, Vishnu Granthi, is connected to the third and forth energy centres. For the Kundalini energy to pass through here, the person has to be at peace in dealing with both power and love. The third knot is called Rudra Granthi. It is connected to the fifth and sixth charkas, and our ability to communicate, and our readiness to let go of our small and restricted sense of self: the ego.

When these three obstacles are overcome, Kundalini reaches the crown chakra, also known as the lotus of a thousand petals. Notice the tree symbology. This is how the mystical union of root and crown is achieved, and the human being becomes enlightened. Enlightenment generates an expanded state of consciousness, which is physiologically experienced as the release of mood-enhancing hormones. Yogic philosophy symbolically portrays this as a cup brimming with nectar, which overflows in Kundalini awakening. Metaphorically speaking, this ecstasy-bringing nectar drips down to the sixth chakra, giving wings to the intuition, and then down to the heart where a motiveless and unconditional form of love begins to flower. The nectar is also diffused into the aura, the protective magnetic field that envelops the human body, causing it to radiate light.

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