RE: Kundalini

thumbnail
Oatmilk, modified 8 Months ago.

Kundalini

Posts: 95 Join Date: 7/30/20 Recent Posts
I want to dedicate this thread to practitioners who experienced destability due to Kundalini and Kriya. I'm specifically referring to Kundalini/Kriya since a little bit of Piti here and there is what I'd consider Wellness to be like.  

For those who have experienced destability and are willing to share their experience, I would like to know a few things: 

-What caused the event to happen? 

-What symptoms did you experience afterwards? (Hearing voices, insomnia etc.) 

-How long did you need to recover from it? 

-How did you recover from it? 

I myself experienced destability and I want to share a few things I found to be helpful during the process: 

-Resourcing 
-Going for lang walks in nature 
-Distracting oneself 
-Being with friends (I found that the positive energy of others is directly transmitted, resulting in functionality) 
-Hot showers 
-Eating proteine- and fat-dense meals 
-Renouncing from stimulants 
-Trying to stimulate the vagus nerve 

Here's a website which provides some information about Kundalini: 
https://biologyofkundalini.com

Lastly, in Buddhism, Kundalini phenomena is only referred to the Insight-Stage of the Arising and Passing Away. IMO it can happen at every stage. I would be interested how the phenomena is categorized in terms of path knowledge, since the experience can cause lasting perceptual shifts without the experience of Cessation. 

I appreciate your willingness to share your story and your thoughtful reply's. 

-O
agnostic, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 1543 Join Date: 2/26/19 Recent Posts
For me, the only thing that "works" with kundalini is acceptance. I've tried ignoring it and obsessing over it, both seem to lead to getting stuck. I view it as the embodiment of repressed emotions and traumas, a completely natural phenomenon. It's going to make it's presence known whatever we do. If we continue to repress it will drive our behavior. When we start to become aware then it can get experienced as being traumatized again and we dislike it on some level and it is painful. Finding that resistance/aversion is key for me, then it kind of opens up and the pain morphs into a more blissful piti energy. When it ramps up there is a tendency to feel spiritually special, even if it is painful. This also prolongs the process. Best attitude for me is to honor the original emotions but just view it as an impersonal cause-and-effect flushing of junk out of the system. But I'm still flailing around figuring it out myself, interested to hear what others have to say.
agnostic, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 1543 Join Date: 2/26/19 Recent Posts
I realize I didn't answer your original question. For me it started  about a year ago, which was about six months after I started meditating heavily. It was about 2 months after what was possibly SE and also when I started to cultivate piti intentionally (as per Leigh Brasington's book). The main manifestation for me has been very strong facial pains, in the form of slow (1 Hz) energy waves which pulsate across my forehead, face and sometimes broader scalp. When I lie down on my back I feel a very slow wave up my spine, but it's not dramatic at all. It's still ongoing, although it's opened up more and flows more freely and less painfully (sometimes pleasurably) around the body.

It seems likely that piti and kundalini are the same thing, just different traditions and emphasis. I experience piti off the cushion whenever my mind gets a little concentrated, in the form of pleasant tingles and waves originating somewhere in my midriff. Looking back I can see that I was experiencing facial pains and sometimes tingles (ever sneezed?) all my adult life. So in that sense the kundalini was already there and it was just that meditation started to release more of it or else made me more aware of what was already going on.

One technique which helps is a sort of middle path between ignoring it and fixating on it. I try to hold it more gently in awareness along with the breath and the rest of the body, breathing through the whole body as it were. I scan my body for areas which feel fine or just mildly buzzing and which I normally ignore if I'm focusing just on the kundalini. In a sense it's step 3 of anapanasati - experiencing the whole body through the breath. The effect is to balance out the energy, it starts to flow more freely and the painful bits join up with the pleasant bits until it's all one blissful energy field.

I tend to agree with Leigh Brasington's view that the pains are due to "blocked piti". If you are not blocked then there's just one blissful body energy, and when it gets stuck in places due to traumatic emotional blocks then that feels painful. I've also found Linda's view helpful that it's a suprapersonal energy field of the universe just doing its thing through your body and surrender is the way to go. Definitely take it easy on yourself, it can feel like you are being pulled apart at times (which is basically what's happening to the "old you").

Some traditions get really mappy about it. Joan Harrington's book has some amazing maps, but I found it too detailed for my liking and prefer to just let it happen more broadly if I can. Definitely revisiting some of the emotional issues in a therapeutic context can help. I did some sessions with a kundalini therapist but it was all about emotional issues and behavior rather than body maps, and it helped a lot.
thumbnail
Oatmilk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 95 Join Date: 7/30/20 Recent Posts
Thank you for your thoughtful reply Agnostic, 

I am happy that it hasn't gotten too dramatically for you and that you made good progress with therapy. 
thumbnail
Oatmilk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 95 Join Date: 7/30/20 Recent Posts
For me the symptoms are experiened quite severly, ranging from what feels like schizophrenia and nihilism at times to panic and negative emotions.
Physical changes include extreme pain in the crown area, psychosomatic stuff, like the perceived pain of old injuries and having heat attacks. Sometimes there's the experience of heart contractions, which feels like I cannot take a full in breath. 
Other than that, the ususal 3 characteristics physical weirdness and an overstimulated nervoussystem which seems to perceive anything 10x more extreme. During meditation there's no unplesantness but 10 minutes seems to be enough, otherwise I freak out later in the day. 
If anyone knows if this will subside after a while, let me know, pleaseemoticon 

Thanks much to all of you for sharing their experience. 

-O
agnostic, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 1543 Join Date: 2/26/19 Recent Posts
Oatmilk:
For me the symptoms are experiened quite severly, ranging from what feels like schizophrenia and nihilism at times to panic and negative emotions.
Physical changes include extreme pain in the crown area, psychosomatic stuff, like the perceived pain of old injuries and having heat attacks. Sometimes there's the experience of heart contractions, which feels like I cannot take a full in breath. 
Other than that, the ususal 3 characteristics physical weirdness and an overstimulated nervoussystem which seems to perceive anything 10x more extreme. During meditation there's no unplesantness but 10 minutes seems to be enough, otherwise I freak out later in the day. 
If anyone knows if this will subside after a while, let me know, pleaseemoticon 

Thanks much to all of you for sharing their experience. 

-O

Sorry to hear about your symptoms Oatmilk, that's a lot to deal with. There's lots of books and stories and videos on the internet about people who have been through similar tough kundalini experiences and come out of it thankful on the other side. Reading more widely gave me context and confidence in the knowledge that I wasn't alone and going through a widely shared part of human development. I'm not a psychotherapist, but I believe that schizophrenics generally don't know they are delusional and talk about their experience as rationally as you do. I've had times when I thought I was losing my  mind or identity. Now I can see it was just that I was going a bit fast through the phase of letting go of familiar personality structures. Actually they came back and now it's a more transparent kind of relationship. Trying to put a timeline on it makes it harder for me, it's a kind of resistance. What makes it easier for me is gently trying to figure out where I am resisting the process. Once you identify an area of resistance it starts to dissolve in my experience and become less problematic. And yes there are times when I can't sit for more than 10 minutes before it becomes very intense and I create problems with sleep and depersonalization. Nothing wrong with backing off at times and trusting in the process itself to keep working out some kinks in the background.

Best wishes
George
thumbnail
terry, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 1650 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Oatmilk:
For me the symptoms are experiened quite severly, ranging from what feels like schizophrenia and nihilism at times to panic and negative emotions.
Physical changes include extreme pain in the crown area, psychosomatic stuff, like the perceived pain of old injuries and having heat attacks. Sometimes there's the experience of heart contractions, which feels like I cannot take a full in breath. 
Other than that, the ususal 3 characteristics physical weirdness and an overstimulated nervoussystem which seems to perceive anything 10x more extreme. During meditation there's no unplesantness but 10 minutes seems to be enough, otherwise I freak out later in the day. 
If anyone knows if this will subside after a while, let me know, pleaseemoticon 

Thanks much to all of you for sharing their experience. 

-O
aloha o,

   Why do you think your particular constellation of symptoms has anything much to do with spiritual practices? Especially esoteric ones, the more imaginal and projective stuff, snakes and whatnot.

   What is the connection?

   I'm reminded of a line in the yi jing: "There is no game in the field. What is not sought for in the right way is not found."

   I don't doubt that you are suffering, and we are sorry. Your relief may lay in other directions.

   You put your suffering, these conditions that you have, in the single basket of kundalini/kriya practice, which presumably you were doing when you experienced symptoms. Putting this stuff one umbrella my become an idee fixe, an obsession with justifying our view by compiling evidence all slanted in one direction. (There must be some people who got something positive out of those practices, what about them?) We want to prove that we are victims, or simply find an unconfusing blanket "cause" for our sticky and ramified situation, which we don't understand but deeply desire to. Same reason people watch fox news.

   Actually, your symptoms have individual causes and need to be dealt with individually. Slow, patient progress, using time as your ally. Common sense mercy and kindness, positive tender care, closing wounds and allowing them to heal. Find friends and a physician.

   It is your suffering, bra, and you need to get over it, in all compassion. 


terry




the buddha, from the majjhima nikaya, the shorter instructions to malukya:

It's just as if a man were wounded with an arrow thickly smeared with poison. His friends & companions, kinsmen & relatives would provide him with a surgeon, and the man would say, 'I won't have this arrow removed until I know whether the man who wounded me was a noble warrior, a priest, a merchant, or a worker.' He would say, 'I won't have this arrow removed until I know the given name & clan name of the man who wounded me... until I know whether he was tall, medium, or short... until I know whether he was dark, ruddy-brown, or golden-colored... until I know his home village, town, or city... until I know whether the bow with which I was wounded was a long bow or a crossbow... until I know whether the bowstring with which I was wounded was fiber, bamboo threads, sinew, hemp, or bark... until I know whether the shaft with which I was wounded was wild or cultivated... until I know whether the feathers of the shaft with which I was wounded were those of a vulture, a stork, a hawk, a peacock, or another bird... until I know whether the shaft with which I was wounded was bound with the sinew of an ox, a water buffalo, a langur, or a monkey.' He would say, 'I won't have this arrow removed until I know whether the shaft with which I was wounded was that of a common arrow, a curved arrow, a barbed, a calf-toothed, or an oleander arrow.' The man would die and those things would still remain unknown to him.
thumbnail
svmonk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 395 Join Date: 8/23/14 Recent Posts
Hi Oatmilk,

I had a period from around August 1996-2000 when I experienced kundalini. With respect to your questions

1) It was triggered during a 3 month vipassana retreat at IMS in Barre in 1996. The symptoms became so severe that I had to leave the retreat after about a month. I also had a herniated disk in my thorassic spine (possibly caused by the bodily distortions due to the kundalini) that was causing pain on my left side, which the doctors thought might be an inflamed gall bladder. I had it tested when I got home but there was no sign of gallstones or anything.

2) During the period in question, I was practicing as an ordained Soto Zen priest, which meant that I had to do monthly weekend retreats, and two seven day retreats per year, in addition to daily half hour sits. I was unable to meditate sitting up some of the time, and had to meditate in a lying down position, which, considering I was wearing formal Zen robes at retreats including the okesa which is not supposed to touch the floor was quite a challenge. My primary symptom was feeling "energy" flows. For example, during one retreat when I was standing in the lunch line, I felt like a lightening bolt was going up my spine, and I could see the "energy" like a flash. I felt "energy" flows in other parts of my body too, particularly when meditating. Additional symptoms were difficulty sleeping, not necessarily insomnia because I could fall asleep but I would wake up in the middle of the night and not be able to get back to sleep. Also hypersexuality. I didn't feel any anxiety or depression or anything like that, probably because I was working full time.

3) The most severe symptoms were gone by around 2000. However, I still get "energy" flows today, from music, from aesthetic experiences, in meditation, and from other causes, except they are not nearly disruptive as then. About the worst that happens is that my eyes will tear up, as if I am having a strong emotional experience.

4) I didn't try to do a long retreat nor do any more meditation than my teacher requested. Another factor, which agnostic comments on, is thinking that it made me somehow "special" and that I could somehow use it for something. So I was in a sense cultivating it, which made it continue. Once I realized what I was doing, I dropped that approach and it slowly died away.

Thanx for the link, I need to check it out. Right after the incident, I was trying to find someone who had done or would do fMRI on a person having kundalini, but one researcher told me that NIH doesn't give grants out for that kind of thing.

Regarding where kundalini fits into the maps, I am not an expert on the maps and so I have no opinion on that.
thumbnail
Oatmilk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 95 Join Date: 7/30/20 Recent Posts
Thank you for sharing your story. It's good to hear that it subsided after a while and that you are able to practice again. 
thumbnail
terry, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 1650 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
svmonk:
Hi Oatmilk,

I had a period from around August 1996-2000 when I experienced kundalini. With respect to your questions

1) It was triggered during a 3 month vipassana retreat at IMS in Barre in 1996. The symptoms became so severe that I had to leave the retreat after about a month. I also had a herniated disk in my thorassic spine (possibly caused by the bodily distortions due to the kundalini) that was causing pain on my left side, which the doctors thought might be an inflamed gall bladder. I had it tested when I got home but there was no sign of gallstones or anything.

2) During the period in question, I was practicing as an ordained Soto Zen priest, which meant that I had to do monthly weekend retreats, and two seven day retreats per year, in addition to daily half hour sits. I was unable to meditate sitting up some of the time, and had to meditate in a lying down position, which, considering I was wearing formal Zen robes at retreats including the okesa which is not supposed to touch the floor was quite a challenge. My primary symptom was feeling "energy" flows. For example, during one retreat when I was standing in the lunch line, I felt like a lightening bolt was going up my spine, and I could see the "energy" like a flash. I felt "energy" flows in other parts of my body too, particularly when meditating. Additional symptoms were difficulty sleeping, not necessarily insomnia because I could fall asleep but I would wake up in the middle of the night and not be able to get back to sleep. Also hypersexuality. I didn't feel any anxiety or depression or anything like that, probably because I was working full time.

3) The most severe symptoms were gone by around 2000. However, I still get "energy" flows today, from music, from aesthetic experiences, in meditation, and from other causes, except they are not nearly disruptive as then. About the worst that happens is that my eyes will tear up, as if I am having a strong emotional experience.

4) I didn't try to do a long retreat nor do any more meditation than my teacher requested. Another factor, which agnostic comments on, is thinking that it made me somehow "special" and that I could somehow use it for something. So I was in a sense cultivating it, which made it continue. Once I realized what I was doing, I dropped that approach and it slowly died away.

Thanx for the link, I need to check it out. Right after the incident, I was trying to find someone who had done or would do fMRI on a person having kundalini, but one researcher told me that NIH doesn't give grants out for that kind of thing.

Regarding where kundalini fits into the maps, I am not an expert on the maps and so I have no opinion on that.


aloha svmonk,

   Thank you for this discussion, the context, interesting and heartful.

   From a biological, common sense standpoint, it would not appear that your symptoms had anything to do with spirituality, other than your conditioning, in the (then) context of official, required costumes and attendance and ritual. You express this view as well by speaking of herniated discs and mris. Although as if the sensations caused the physical conditions, so the insight is one-sided. (A "lightning bolt" up the spine while standing in a lunch line subsequently diagnosd as a herniated disc being described as kundalini is a stretch, bra.)

   The spiritual view and the medical view are hardly compatible, especially with the red herring of hypersexuality thrown in. 

   I would consider Rigth View here, in the zen sense of each view being only a view, while our true sense of things is above individual views, and takes in all and none.

   A pretty pearl, a lovely gem...

   Soto zen priest, huh! Like working in a chocolate factory...


terry
thumbnail
svmonk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 395 Join Date: 8/23/14 Recent Posts
Hi Terry,

Like I said, the kundalini was triggered by one month
of intensive retreat practice at IMS in Barre. During the retreat, I
practiced both vipassana and some concentration, even though I was
practicing as a Zen monk (and wearing Zen robes there, as instructed by
my teacher).

Regarding your judgement about my medical symptoms,
do you have the same judgement about Linda's medical symptoms
(histamine intolerance, etc.) as you have about mine? Her experience of kundalini
(lightening flashes up the spine,
feelings of energy in the limbs, etc.) reads almost identically to mine,
and is the same as reported by Gopi Krishna in his book Living with Kundalini,
a memoir and a classic in the literature about kundalini. And the feelings of prana
and lightening occured well after the retreat, about a year, after the
abdominal pain had subsided, and continued for around 3-4 years with
decreasing intensity.

And about hypersexuality, this is a manifestation that often occurs. Gopi
Krishna talks about it in his book. Fortunately, I had a understanding
partner, as was also the case with Gopi Krishna. Not everyone is so
lucky (see here). Hypersexuality is not something most Westerners
who have kundalini want to talk about, but in the Hindu tradition,
kundalini is called  kundalini shaki, and is said to be a coiled snake at the
base of the  spine, which, when it is awakened, moves up the spine
liberating the chakras until it reaches the crown chakra.

Most Westerners who  get kundalini from meditation are completely confused by it,
and if it is quite strong and there are other sensory manifestations (like
auditory and visual hallucinations) they may get depressed or have
anxiety or think they have a psychological problem. The popular press is
filled with reports about how beneficial mindfulness meditation is,
that there are no downsides, and here they are suffering from these
feelings of lightening in all their limbs, which is sometimes quite
painful and often quite pleasureable, and they have no idea about
how to get it to stop. Mostly their teacher can't help them (that
happened to me for example, the Zen tradition never mentions it) and, if
they are really unlucky and their teacher is not skillful, their
teacher might blame them for practicing incorrectly.

The reason (and practically the only reason)
I hang out here on DhO is that, when these people come on and ask for
some advice, to tell them what my experience suggests might help: don't
cultivate it by thinking you are special, stop meditating for some
period of time, go to the gym and work out, and eat heavy foods like
meat (Linda mentions this as helping her). It is not the way you
are practicing, nor does it reflect in any way on you as a person, some
people just get this kind of prana flow when they do intensive 
meditation practice and others don't. This is my bodhisattva practice.
thumbnail
Siavash, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 1206 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
Thank you James.
thumbnail
terry, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 1650 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
svmonk:
Hi Terry,

Like I said, the kundalini was triggered by one month
of intensive retreat practice at IMS in Barre. During the retreat, I
practiced both vipassana and some concentration, even though I was
practicing as a Zen monk (and wearing Zen robes there, as instructed by
my teacher).

Regarding your judgement about my medical symptoms,
do you have the same judgement about Linda's medical symptoms
(histamine intolerance, etc.) as you have about mine? Her experience of kundalini
(lightening flashes up the spine,
feelings of energy in the limbs, etc.) reads almost identically to mine,
and is the same as reported by Gopi Krishna in his book Living with Kundalini,
a memoir and a classic in the literature about kundalini. And the feelings of prana
and lightening occured well after the retreat, about a year, after the
abdominal pain had subsided, and continued for around 3-4 years with
decreasing intensity.

And about hypersexuality, this is a manifestation that often occurs. Gopi
Krishna talks about it in his book. Fortunately, I had a understanding
partner, as was also the case with Gopi Krishna. Not everyone is so
lucky (see here). Hypersexuality is not something most Westerners
who have kundalini want to talk about, but in the Hindu tradition,
kundalini is called  kundalini shaki, and is said to be a coiled snake at the
base of the  spine, which, when it is awakened, moves up the spine
liberating the chakras until it reaches the crown chakra.

Most Westerners who  get kundalini from meditation are completely confused by it,
and if it is quite strong and there are other sensory manifestations (like
auditory and visual hallucinations) they may get depressed or have
anxiety or think they have a psychological problem. The popular press is
filled with reports about how beneficial mindfulness meditation is,
that there are no downsides, and here they are suffering from these
feelings of lightening in all their limbs, which is sometimes quite
painful and often quite pleasureable, and they have no idea about
how to get it to stop. Mostly their teacher can't help them (that
happened to me for example, the Zen tradition never mentions it) and, if
they are really unlucky and their teacher is not skillful, their
teacher might blame them for practicing incorrectly.

The reason (and practically the only reason)
I hang out here on DhO is that, when these people come on and ask for
some advice, to tell them what my experience suggests might help: don't
cultivate it by thinking you are special, stop meditating for some
period of time, go to the gym and work out, and eat heavy foods like
meat (Linda mentions this as helping her). It is not the way you
are practicing, nor does it reflect in any way on you as a person, some
people just get this kind of prana flow when they do intensive 
meditation practice and others don't. This is my bodhisattva practice.


    My bodhisattva practice involves discouraging people from eating heavy foods like flesh, and encouraging meditation, so I guess we operate at cross purposes, my friend. 

   Linda and I have discussed her meat eating in the past. We won't dig that one up again. Now that I understand your approach, hopefully I will remember and not challenge you on it in future. 

   My intent was only to point out that there are many explanations, many views, none of which cover all the bases. When I was studying this stuff kundalini was regarded as a good thing, a technique, something to cultivate. The wholly negative approach, soliciting only bad experiences, struck me as unskillful. This whole business of dark nights and reversion to deadness and cruelty as antidotes seem to me the result of spiritual greed, the karma of grasping and ignorance. The delusion of future progress militating against present spontaneity, freedom and spaciousness, unfettered awareness, and the achieving of non-achieving.

   Also, my thinking on the downsides of meditation is that people are doing it wrong, making an activity out of it. Never actually attaining anything because they are so busy making progress, or cleaning up.

   Still, if I had shooting pains I wouldn't go to a zen teacher for relief. But that's just me.


terry



from "the life of the mind" by hannah arendt... her comments in this context apply to the "science" of meditation...


   The very concept of an unlimited progress, which accompanied the rise of modem science, and has remained its dominant Inspiring principle, is the best documentation of the fact that all science still moves within the realm of common sense experience, subject to corrigible error and deception. When the experience of constant correction In scientific research is generalized, it leads into the curious "better and better; "truer and truer," that is, into the boundlessness of progress with its inherent admission that the good and the true are unattainable. If they were ever attained, the thirst for knowledge would be quenched and the search for cognition would come to an end. Thls, of course, ls unlikely to happen, in view of the enormous amount of the unknown, but it is quite likely that particular sciences may reach definite limits of what is knowable to man. Yet the point is that the modem idea of progress implicitly denies such limitations. Unquestionably the notion of progress was born as the result of the tremendous advances of scientific knowledge, a veritable avalanche of discoveries, in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, and I think it quite possible that it was the relentlessness inherent in sheer thinking, whose need can never be assuaged, that, once it had invaded the sciences, drove the scientists to ever-new discoveries, each one giving rise to a new theory, so that those caught in the movement were subject to the illusion of a never-ending process - the process of progress. Here we should not forget that the later notion of an unending perfectibility of the human species, so prominent in the eighteenth-century Enlightenment, was absent from the sixteenth nnd seventeenth centuries' rather pessimistic evaluation of human nature.

   One consequence, however, of this development seems to me obvious and of considerable importance. The very notion of truth, which somehow had survived so many turning-points of our intellectual history, underwent a decisive change: it was transformed or, rather, broken down into a string of verities, each one in its time claiming general validity even though the very continuity of the research implied something merely provisional. This is a strange state of affairs. It may even suggest that if a given science accidentally reached its goal, this would by no means stop the workers in that field, who would be driven past their goal by the sheer momentum of the illusion of unlimited progress, a kind of semblance rising out of their activity.

  
thumbnail
Oatmilk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 95 Join Date: 7/30/20 Recent Posts
terry:
[quote=    My bodhisattva practice involves discouraging people from eating heavy foods like flesh, and encouraging meditation, so I guess we operate at cross purposes, my friend. 
]

  

Hey Terry, 

I'm just gonna copy and paste this from Shargrol, since I share his view - there's also a section in the Manual of Insight about it: 

"Being evangelical about meditation can be:
  • being prideful about what we're doing and indirectly seeking praise about our dedication or accomplishments.
  • being jealous about what other people are doing instead of meditating, so we compete/cut them down by saying they should meditate too
  • being full of a desire that everyone's problems should be fixed so that life would "just be easier", but this is a subtle greed for easiness, aversion to the difficulty that actually exists in life, and fantasy that things could be radically different without many things radically changing (note there is desire and the three poisons). Most of the time we make these recommendations when we have difficulty being with people's suffering (i.e. compassion = Middle English: via Old French from ecclesiastical Latin compassio(n- ), from compati ‘suffer with’. )
  • being so locked into a pattern (i.e. daily meditation routine) that we can't imagine others having different patterns that help them with their life
  • being greedy for the feeling of more meditation accomplishments, so we use other people to get it by being an advocate for meditation or trying to be their teacher or guide
  • being hateful of how people are and so beat them up or shame them because they are not meditating. Or sometimes we quietly seethe with hatred, not saying anything, but feeling hatred of how people are irresponsible because they aren't doing the meditation work they should be doing."
What do you think about it?

-O 
thumbnail
svmonk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 395 Join Date: 8/23/14 Recent Posts
Hi Terry,

Thanx for the clarification.

Re. meat eating, I recall a quote I read somewhere from the late Robert Aitken Roshi (which I unfortunately can't find on line). I think he was at a party and eating a meat appetizer or something like that. Someone asked him how he could justify eating meat when he was a Buddhist, and he replied: "well, the animal is dead but the hostess is alive, so I choose to honor the hostess." emoticon

My wife is a vegetarian and we eat vegetarian (but not vegan) exclusively at home. If we go out to eat, which we don't do very often, I'll eat meat. Personally, I feel the most compelling reason not to eat meat, especially beef and lamb, is the carbon footprint. Runiment meat generates about 27 lbs CO2/lb of meat, which is 4x chicken and 13x vegetable protein. I feel that the death of a single animal for food, as long as it dies humanely, is a drop in the ocean compared to what humans are in the process of doing to the planet.

Regarding your comparison of kundalini to shooting pains, it's pretty obvious you have really not experienced it my friend. It is not something that goes away with a couple of ibuprofin and a good night's sleep, nor with a visit to the chirpractor. emoticon

           jak
thumbnail
Siavash, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 1206 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
Regarding your comparison of kundalini to shooting pains, it's pretty obvious you have really not experienced it my friend. It is not something that goes away with a couple of ibuprofin and a good night's sleep, nor with a visit to the chirpractor. emoticon

And also strange painful manifestations that are not like ordinary pains.
Last night I wanted to sleep, but a manifestation of it was causing my legs to jump, because it was litterally feeling that my left foot is on fire and burning. Fortunately they last only less than 10 seconds each time, but repeat frequently. Or I get itches that it feels like my bones are itching and you don't know where to scratch. The only thing to do is just increase the degree of equanimity. Often relaxation makes it more intense for me.

(I didn't know anything about this thing when I started to have the sensations, but because they persisted, I started learning about it.)
thumbnail
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 5319 Join Date: 12/8/18 Recent Posts
It happened to me because I didn't properly respond to the universe when it talked to me nicely. It had to scream, and so it did, with the classical lightning bolts shooting up through the spine and exploding in my head so that I couldn't stand upright. As I had never heard of Kundalini, it took me another decade to know what to listen to, so I developed chronic illness. However, when I started to listen, it turned out to be an incredible teacher. I love it. Now that I listen, it rewards me by guiding me through the path, and it has stopped screaming. 

If you have Kundalini symptoms, you have a calling. You need to give room in your life for spiritual development and listen to what the process needs you to do and be very gentle with your body because the infrastructure is going through a major renovation. You don't call the shots. The process does. You better listen to its whispers, not only because the shouting can be very unpleasant, but also because the process knows the way much better than you do and its the best teacher you could ever have.

Kundalini is not a forceful energy. It's the awakening process itself. The energy symptoms are just mobilizations of prana to clean up the pathways. And yes, if you are susceptible to noticing them, that is not restricted to just one nana or even a few of them. It can be very gentle and subtle, though, if you are on good terms with it. That may require major life style changes, with lots of stillness, only the right kind of exercise (like hatha yoga or swimming in a lake), and a radical change of diet (at least it did for me). 

This does not make anyone special, as it's not a personal thing, and it's nothing that you can cultivate or control. The process does its own thing when you stop trying to do stuff. 
thumbnail
Oatmilk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 95 Join Date: 7/30/20 Recent Posts
Thank you Linda, your story sounds unpleansant as well. A decade of going through this must be intensely rough, I hope that you are doing better by now. 
Do you mind if I ask about the chronic ilness? I'm experiencing a lot of weird physical symptoms as well, which I am at times quite concerned about. 
May I ask as well how your diet has changed? I'm mostly vegan and I read that it's healthy to cut out grains from ones diet. The only problem I have with this, is that a vegan diet already goes along with a very light feeling of the body and re: grounding, this is something I don't consider to be helpful. 
thumbnail
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 5319 Join Date: 12/8/18 Recent Posts
Oatmilk:
Thank you Linda, your story sounds unpleansant as well. A decade of going through this must be intensely rough, I hope that you are doing better by now. 
Do you mind if I ask about the chronic ilness? I'm experiencing a lot of weird physical symptoms as well, which I am at times quite concerned about. 
May I ask as well how your diet has changed? I'm mostly vegan and I read that it's healthy to cut out grains from ones diet. The only problem I have with this, is that a vegan diet already goes along with a very light feeling of the body and re: grounding, this is something I don't consider to be helpful. 

Thankyou for caring! It was unpleasant because I mistreated myself. I don't blame Kundalini. Kundalini is what made me start taking care of myself and follow my heart. It was like spiritual Antabuse. 

I have had chronic pain and chronic fatigue and brain fog. That's gone now, except for when I have a reaction from foods. I also got major issues with food intolerances. Those still remain, with a wide range of symptoms: inflammatory pain, stomach symptoms, exhaustion, brain fog, rashes, wounds in my mouth, flue symptoms, swelling, headache, nausea, mood swings, tremor... With a very strict diet I feel fine, though. 

I used to be a vegetarian but I can't now, unfortunately. I can't eat gluten, dairy or eggs, and on top of that I have histamine intolerance and allergic cross reactions. Most foods either contain histamines or trigger histamine production in the body. If they don't, they will over time. There are extensive rules for how to store and cook foods when you are histamine intolerant. Most vegetarian and vegan proteine sources are high in histamines. Meat products too, but not freshly frozen meat. Most foods make me very sick. I thought I would rather die than eat meat again, but it turned out I was wrong. After all, I'm a parent. 

I really can't tell you what to eat. Needs differ. If you have health issues, it might be a good idea to keep a food and health diary, to see if there are any patterns to your symptoms that correspond with patterns in your eating habits. 

Grounding is indeed important. Listen to your body rather than to something you read. If you need grains, eat grains. 

Make sure that you get enough rest. Kundalini and stress don't do well together. 

Much metta!
thumbnail
Oatmilk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 95 Join Date: 7/30/20 Recent Posts
Thank you, Linda!(:
thumbnail
terry, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 1650 Join Date: 8/7/17 Recent Posts
Oatmilk:
I want to dedicate this thread to practitioners who experienced destability due to Kundalini and Kriya. I'm specifically referring to Kundalini/Kriya since a little bit of Piti here and there is what I'd consider Wellness to be like.  

For those who have experienced destability and are willing to share their experience, I would like to know a few things: 

-What caused the event to happen? 

-What symptoms did you experience afterwards? (Hearing voices, insomnia etc.) 

-How long did you need to recover from it? 

-How did you recover from it? 

I myself experienced destability and I want to share a few things I found to be helpful during the process: 

-Resourcing 
-Going for lang walks in nature 
-Distracting oneself 
-Being with friends (I found that the positive energy of others is directly transmitted, resulting in functionality) 
-Hot showers 
-Eating proteine- and fat-dense meals 
-Renouncing from stimulants 
-Trying to stimulate the vagus nerve 

Here's a website which provides some information about Kundalini: 
https://biologyofkundalini.com

Lastly, in Buddhism, Kundalini phenomena is only referred to the Insight-Stage of the Arising and Passing Away. IMO it can happen at every stage. I would be interested how the phenomena is categorized in terms of path knowledge, since the experience can cause lasting perceptual shifts without the experience of Cessation. 

I appreciate your willingness to share your story and your thoughtful reply's. 

-O

   This is a very negative approach to spirituality. You ask only for negativity.

   What is your interest?

t
n0nick, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 17 Join Date: 6/12/20 Recent Posts
I have been studying comparative religion for years and have meditated in different traditions( mostly hindu and buddhist) fuelled by severe depression. Last year I was doing a home retreat with a lot of nondual  contemplation and tratak(Kasina). I had some nondual insights and underwent a full blown kundalini awakening. My process has been quite dramatic and painful with a lot of physical changes. I have been living a pretty unhealthy lifestyle before that with substance addiction( nicotine, marijuana and sex) . I see kundalini as a force of karmic purification which works on physical and subtle bodies. It has a map of it's own and I dont really think it maps well with the mctb therevada map. All the painful symptoms kriyas are prana opening channels and running into obstructions in the nervous system and releasing  of trauma and repressed emotions. As per my research the kriyas and other symptoms may last upto a few years to dacades even. It depends on your karmic debt. Even though it is the most painful thing I have and am still going through I couldn't have been more thankful for this. I am off all stimulants and trying to live a healthy lifestyle with spiritual practices  to support this process. 
thumbnail
Oatmilk, modified 8 Months ago.

RE: Kundalini

Posts: 95 Join Date: 7/30/20 Recent Posts
Hey n0nick, 

thanks for sharing your story, it's really great to hear that your experience has been transformative in a positive way! 

-O