what is kundalini?
Kundalini is a psycho-spiritual force that lies dormant in all people until it is awakened in some. It is a force of immense power and potential. Once awakened, it has the ability to completely transform one's life. For some people, awakening Kundalini is a goal, but for many others, it is a subject of which nothing is known, and thus can catch us completely unaware. There is a little known about what Kundalini is and what its role is in the human experience, especially in Western society. Myself and many others are trying to change that, by bringing awareness to the phenomenon. Many believe it is window for spiritual awakening and learning about our higher purpose. Some believe it can lead to enlightenment.
I personally am hesitant to attach such words to the experience, as it is not a guarantee or a gateway. Some sites and books will advertise Kundalini as such, and it is dangerous. Awakening Kundalini has many risks, especially if all of the trials, tests and rites of passage are not to be heeded or respected. There are plenty of examples on YouTube of people who thought Kundalini was "cool" and wanted to try rousing it on their own...only to find they were far down a rabbit hole they didn't want to be in.
Once awakened, it is a process that unfolds with countless symptoms both physical and psychological (see below). These experiences can be channeled and softened somewhat, but most often they are going to happen how they happen, and it is up to us to allow them, doing our best not to engage in fear along the way. This presents a very undeniable challenge for many of us, as Kundalini adds/strips away/changes so many ways we relate to ourselves and our environment.
Usually Kundalini is marked by an intense awakening "explosion" or "cascade" though it can also take other forms that are more subtle and gradual. Typically the more sudden awakenings feel like a ton of liquid electricity surging up the spine and throughout the body - these types are unmistakable. The other, more gradual awakenings are more difficult to pinpoint.
The below list is meant to be used as a guide for understanding Kundalini - not as a self-diagnostic tool. If you are experiencing strange and ongoing symptoms, see your doctor to rule out any neurological (or other) diseases.
how does it affect you? partial (incomplete) symptoms list
~ Intense energy rushes, muscle spasms, tingling, jerking, tremors, "crawling" or "slithering" sensations anywhere in the body, often primarily in and around the spine and head
~ Headaches, head pressures, feeling like something is stabbing or wants to poke through the top of the head, feeling a tight band around the head, tingling in the third eye area
~ Changes in sight, seeing lights
~ Changes in voice and speech
~ Heart palpitations, "heart expansions" (Kundalini energy concentrates around the heart centre and "expands" the area, resulting in rapid heartbeats and anxiety
~ Hearing changes: roaring, whooshing, buzzing, singing sounds, music
~ Pains anywhere in the body can be amplified - Kundalini can also mimic diseases when nothing is actually wrong - this has been said to be a "cleansing" or "clearing" of certain impurities or Karma
~ Detox: inability to consume certain foods or drink suddenly. Drastic changes in appetite or cravings. Some vegans become meat eaters and vice versa
~ Psychological changes: heightened awareness, sensitivity - to others' emotions, ability to pick up on things others cannot
~ Deeper perception of the spiritual self, connection to the divine
~Visions, dreams heavily symbol-laden
~ New depths of creativity or sudden desire to be creative
~ New "gifts" of seeing and expression
~ Anxiety, bouts of depression, "dark night of the soul"
~ Some mental illnesses are misdiagnosed Kundalini
~ Feelings of overwhelming bliss and "oneness" and sometimes overwhelming fear and loss of control
~ Sense of "another" presence within the self.
The guru trap
There are many spiritual leaders out there that are not worth your time. People who have supposedly transcended suffering and have answers to existential, emotional and ethereal questions with poise and grace. They often seem to have something we don't, and since we are in need of that "thing", we become enthralled by them.
I recall 11 years ago, when I was dealing with my freshly-awakened Kundalini, I fell in with this "guru" and his followers for a while. I was so confused about what Kundalini was, and how to cope with it, that his words were gospel to me. Years later, and after some of my own self-development, I broke away from that group. A short time later, I learned of his sexual predation of students. Luckily I was not one of them, but so many were.
A tale as old as time.
It doesn't always amount to such extremes of course, but with "bad gurus" there often is manipulation in one form or another. These people lead you to believe that they hold a gem of wisdom you require for your evolution, and you can only access it through them. Or, simply, they are so eg-driven in their pursuits that their so-called 'wisdom' is completely and ultimately drowned out by how self-satisfied they are.
Spirituality is an intangible, objective, essentially formless thing that is unique to all of us, even if it ultimately merges us with "oneness." Because it's so amorphous and individualistic, there is no textbook - yet we sometimes desire there to be one. Those who proclaim to have a textbook hold a lot of power. If they are being proper about it, they do not use that power to fuel their own agendas.
They do not feel superior to others. They do not allow that power to fuel the ego beyond its natural proportions. They are not cruel and condescending. They are not dogmatic.
I am always very skeptical when someone claims to be a leader of this type. And I would never, ever allow anyone to title me this way.
What it really comes down to is quite simple: some of us are more verbose than others about our spiritual experiences. I just so happen to be one of those outspoken people.
My only advice surrounding finding gurus/hierophants/shamans/leaders is to be very, very discerning. If your gut is saying something is off, it's off. If you feel they are coming from a genuine place, that's wonderful - you've found something precious and rare. Just be careful with that precious vulnerability of yours, please.
my story + services
I had a spontaneous Kundalini awakening in 2006 and it changed me forever. If you'd like to read my story, please listen to the below audio.
I offer services to those in need of spiritual guidance - specializing in Kundalini awakening-related spiritual emergencies, but I also am available to correspond about anxiety, depression and existential crises. All correspondence is 100% safe and confidential. No information will be used for any purpose. It is strictly for the sake of aiding those who may need it. I am not an expert or a guru, simply someone who understands and is here as an anonymous support should you need it.
Please feel free to email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For further reading, click here.
kundalini awakening network
I am launching a new project - a website for those who need it.
The Kundalini Awakening Network (or KAN) is a website geared to connect a worldwide network of support, linking people who are undergoing (or have gone through) a kundalini awakening with all kinds of healers, therapists and medical professionals who are "kundalini positive" (aka recognize kundalini as a valid life experience) in their area. Some of these support systems will also be available digitally, or long distance.
The aim is to amass a community of Kundalini positive folks together so that those who are experiencing Kundalini do not feel so isolated in obtaining the emotional, mental and physical help they need.
The Western world is 'waking up' to the reality of Kundalini. Countless people awaken this phenomenon within them either spontaneously, or through willful means. Even if achieved intentionally, Kundalini can open up many gateways that are quite unexpected, requiring dynamic support.
In many people's experiences, this support is difficult to come by. Kundalini is not yet widely accepted as a legitimate phenomenon by the medical and psychiatric world, leaving us often feeling misunderstood and ostracized.
The professionals listed here have been carefully selected and vetted to ensure their safety; they either believe in kundalini as a valid experience and/or have undergone an awakening themselves.
There will also be a list of non-professionals (such as myself) who have offered their support should you simply need someone to speak to. Eventually there will be a forum for chat. Please bear with us as we grow this community!
If you would like to be a part of this project please fill out the below form.
submissions for upcoming kundalini book
I am currently taking submissions for a book I am writing about Kundalini awakening + energy.
The book will be a compilation of real stories from people who have undergone a Kundalini awakening. Many books and reference materials which are available today do not appeal to the fact that Kundalini only happens to regular people with regular lives. Much of the material out there is soaked in spiritual jargon and is inaccessible to those of us who need support and guidance. My goal is to create a resource which will use plain language to describe this mysterious phenomenon, and to highlight, through the wide variety of stories, what can happen during the process. I hope to find common elements which people have found aided or hindered their journey, so that the reader can try out their own combination and find ease and comfort. Finally, I wish to provide a wide array of personal and professional resources.
The book will contain five sections:
1. What is known about Kundalini - key terms, symbols, theories, symptoms, manifestations, history
2. People's Kundalini stories - 22 in total - covering everything from pleasant experiences to difficult ones
3. Guidance, tips and tricks to help ease the process
4. Kundalini artwork
5. Contact information and resources
If you would like to submit your story, please do so by emailing email@example.com
The guidelines are as follows:
~ Kundalini story must be your own personal experience. Please make sure to discuss what your symptoms and phenomena were/are somewhere in the narrative. Can be any length as long as it is your real, sincere story.
~ Must not contain any real names of any other people unless they consent - otherwise, please use pseudonyms
~ Along with your story, please send a list of foods, activities and habits which helped or hindered your Kundalini process. For example: some vegetarians are called to eat meat, some people who do yoga find it too intense and need to stop, some people begin making artwork, etc.
~ If you wish to have your real name published, please let me know if you would be willing to have any contact information published in the 5th section of the book for correspondence with readers. If you wish to be anonymous, please provide a pseudonym, and your contact information will not be provided.
~ If you are contributing artwork, please include your name, a high resolution photo of the image, and any contact information you would like provided.
Any questions please don't hesitate to email me.
Greatly anticipating making this book a huge success in our Kundalini community!
Lots of love,