When taking yoga classes at Yoga Time Studio, especially those led by Mindy, you have probably heard her talk about Kundalini and Kundalini rising. It made me curious to find out more, so I did some research. Below are some of the highlights from what I found. I also included my sources at the end of this blog in case you want to read through all the information and find out even more.
“Kundalini Yoga is the science to unite the finite with Infinity, and it’s the art to experience Infinity in the finite.”
–Yogi Bhajan, 10/27/88
Kundalini is a Sanscrit term from ancient India that identifies the arising of an energy and consciousness which has been coiled at the base of the spine since birth, and is the source of the life force (pranic energy, chi , bio-energy) that everybody knows.
The term kundalini is used to refer to the vital force or energy that we all hold within us. Often called the “sleeping goddess” or “serpent power”, it is represented as a serpent coiled around the first chakra or root chakra at the base of the spine.
Kundalini Yoga is an ancient practice that helps you channel powerful energy and transform your life. It is called the Yoga of Awareness. It is a dynamic, powerful tool that is designed to give you an experience of your soul.
The energy of kundalini is known for its transformative power in the process of self-development and spiritual development. In the Hindu tradition where these concepts as we currently know them come from, kundalini awakening is both a process and an objective for spiritual development. It leads to the union of personal consciousness and cosmic and divine consciousness.
According to Dr. David Frawley, Kundalini is the concentrated energy of awareness or attention. It is not an energy apart from consciousness, but rather the energy that manifests with consciousness when it becomes free from thought.”
If Kundalini is awoken, the energy is said to rise up from the base of the spine from the root chakra, which in parable has been referred to as the base of the mountain. The energy ascends to the peak, which correlates with the crown chakra and the pineal gland. (Carrellas, B. (2007). Urban tantra: sacred sex for the twenty-first century. Berkeley, CA: Celestial Arts. ) “When the pineal gland is activated, a major change in consciousness is experienced, explains Carrellas, author of Urban Tantra.” According to Stryker, awakening the kundalini energy causes a, “state of vision that is super sensory where we can access our highest potential.”
Kundalini yoga powerfully combines the full spectrum of yogic tools—mantra (sacred sound), asana (posture), mudra (hand position), bandha (body lock), meditation (mindful focus), and pranayama (breathing technique)
Kundalini classes start with “tuning in,” which means chanting the mantra Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo. This is Gurmukhi for, “I bow to the creative consciousness. I bow to the divine wisdom within.” This ritual is intended to acknowledge the lineage of Kundalini yoga teachers, and it’s also a meditation in and of itself that establishes a connection to a higher state of consciousness beyond the ego.
In addition to the opening mantra, there’s a mantra used to close the class: Sat Nam. This is Gurmukhi for, “Truth is my identity” and is intended to awaken the soul.
The ancient teachings of Kundalini yoga were kept secret for a very long time. Instead of being taught in the open, Kundalini yoga was taught only to royalty and nobility for thousands of years. This uplifting practice is now available to everyone thanks to a man named Yogi Bhajan, who brought Kundalini yoga to the West in the late 1960s and began to teach it publicly. Yogi Bhajan taught it openly in order to prepare humanity for the major changes that this planet is going through as we cross from the Piscean to the Aquarian Age. The ancient technology of Kundalini Yoga gives us the awareness and the fortitude to make this a smooth transition. The legacy of technical and spiritual knowledge that Yogi Bhajan studied and mastered in India is the gift he brought to the West.
Before going to a Kundalini Yoga class there are a few things you should know and be aware of. These 7 things are covered in more detail at: https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/what-i-wish-id-known-before-my-first-kundalini-class
- You will chant
- The flow is completely different from other yoga classes
- There is a ton of focus on the breath
- Meditation in built into the class
- You will meet the edge of your comfort zone – Kundalini yoga challenges your body to rise above the self-imposed limits of the mind.
- You will see a lot of white
- There’s a reason Kundalini only became popular recently
- Each class is different