After reading a lot of silly things about the power called Kundalini on the net I began to think about my experience with the force. When I started on Yoga I was inexperienced enough to think that awakening this demonic force would be good for inner growth. Nothing could have been farther from truth than that. This force, or force’s to be exact, as there are innumerable such powers’ in your body and in the nature, is the residual energy contained in things. It is this force which gets released when we achieve fission inside an atom. It is much better left alone than explored for it floods you with a fake awareness of reality and draws you away from your real self.
My attempts to awaken this power were through pranayama. The actual practice I adopted was easy enough. While doing pranayama I mentally directed the flow of energy towards the base of my spine and visualized it rising through the sushumna to the bindu which is just a little over your head. (Giving a mental slap to the snake at the base would be helpful.) Some knowledge of the etheric, astral, and mental bodies can also be useful in your visualization. On the return journey I tried to spread the energy all through the body to avoid the force getting fixed at some nerve centers which are called chakras. This could have been an error too, arising out of the little knowledge that I then had on the subject. If it is fixed at some centers it could lead to awakening the properties related to that level of awareness to a morbid extent.
Well this was the practice that I used to do at that time. It is a little more detailed than given in the above description but as it is not relevant here we will skip those.
I had stumbled on the system in my youth and was not at all well informed on the subject then. Not that I am now, other than I have done some reading on it since and have had some personal experience on the subject.
My grandfather was a true Tantrik and was the last disciple of one of the great Tantrik’s of his time. Though I was an atheist at that time, I believed that we can’t dismiss any system of belief unless we have at least personally tried them out. I was out of collage and was yet unemployed. I had a lot of spare time and no girls to worry about, for that sort of things wouldn't do in a village in our land. I must have had enormous amount of libido and no regular outlet for it. I was always restless then. May be that is why I ventured into Yoga with the help of his brief notes on the subject and certain other books he had including Shad Chakra Nirupana, a wonderful little treatise on Chakra’s.
The only guru I had then was my mother, who was given Mantra Diksha (Mantra initiation) by her father and was otherwise quite innocent of all the practices of yoga and was absolutely incapable of giving me any guidance in the matter. She had initiated me into the mantra yoga in the manner she was taught by her father and from then onwards I considered him my Guru and went on with my personal mystic adventures till I found some one else.
I have to mention that as far as the serpent power is concerned Pranayama is not the only method to release the energy, but it could be the the most pedestrian and the easily understood of all practices. Any one can attempt it provided there is someone who has gone through the grind before to help them when it is needed. As I have explained before in my posts, pranayama alone releases energies which might cause harm if they are not utilized properly. If you couple it with this wicked force the harm could often be irreparable.
I did not have any immediate awakening of the force during this practice. Some authors like W.C. Leadbeater of the Theosophical Society have claimed to have awakened it within 40 days. I do not know if that is possible. He has stated that it was the result of intense practice with the assistance of a great master. Anyway I did not practice that hard and was even doubtful whether it would awaken at all. But I went on doing it day in and day out. This little visualization trick, while doing pranayama, soon became a habit only with me and I slowly began to drift towards other practices which interested me then. I would be doing this thing in morning and in evening and then would forget about it.
After a period of time I began to notice subtle changes inside myself. I became intensely conscious of what was going on around me. But it always had a weird aspect to it. I could sense the feelings of others, but unfortunately it always came from their bad side. It was as if none around me had a good thought in them. This began to trouble me a greatly. My level of concentration had become heightened and I would feel a shock if a minor noise was heard. Every sense was alert, touch, smell, taste, sight, sound all came to me in purely digital quality as we say now. I was compelled to adopt certain postures while lying down or sitting though I have never even cared for them in the first place. In fact I only learned the names and the nature of those while reading up on them subsequently.
While meditating I would become suddenly conscious that I am doing the Moolabandh and Uddiyan bandh and Jalandhara bandh unconsciously. The breath would suddenly cease or become very thin and I would be sitting in that posture sometimes for a long while without being conscious of it. All this, while I was only doing Vichara Dhyana which is in the Jnana Yoga tradition and quite distinct from the Hatha Yoga or Raja Yoga practices. In it you think of your inner self and try to raise your consciousness through thought discarding everything other than your awareness of yourself or the “I”. I had never thought much of the Hatha Yoga practices other than Pranayama and my interest was limited to mostly Nadi Shudhi pranayama. I was only extending Nadi Shudhi pranayama even while trying to raise Kundalini. Other and more vigorous sorts of Pranayama never interested me much.
As the feeling heightened I became deeply worried, for I could not stand the sight of my friends, family members and people in general. It was as if whenever they came into my presence they brought the whole of evil with them. I was never conscious of evil in that sense before. My intuition developed and with it my troubles increased, for I would start seeing something in my mind all of a sudden and that would happen in the immediate future, mostly bad. I had to wage an intense battle within me. All the demonic forces in the universe was rising up against me, I would feel bestial urges and desires and they would take hold of me completely, I would be completely buffeted with all sort of sensual promptings ceaselessly.
Yet there was no visible sign of the force awakening inside me. No one I knew then could have helped me in my predicament. I became a recluse, barely venturing out because all the damned badness inside the mind would be triggered the moment I set eyes on anything. As no one could be found to help I resorted to reciting my given mantra incessantly to keep out of the clutches of the vileness I found in myself. I would be reciting it even in my sleep. Would wake up like that and would continue like that all through the day. What a change from a true atheist!
Before venturing in to the practice of this stupid yoga I was just like any youth of that period. If not an extrovert I enjoyed company and going out. I was not a bad athlete and had represented my colleges in Cricket. I was fanatical about working out everyday. Enjoyed all kinds of board games, including cards, caroms, chess and had also some talent for writing.
I never missed a local festival in the neighborhood, took pleasure in reading and had some intellectual friends (me being the least learned among them) and we discussed Plato to Sartre, roshomon to seventh seal, Sophocles to Brecht, Karl Marx to Mahatma Gandhi. I could stand my drink and even had smoked pot occasionally (very spurious kind, none of us had any money to go for anything better. It rarely got us into a mood; we did it for the thrill of breaking rules rather than anything else)
I had even directed a drama at that time. As my father used to say, I must have been the Jack of all trades-their cessation and my withdrawal into myself was sudden and surprising for every one.
My habits were also beginning to change. I was never fond of vegetarian food. But I suddenly found myself more inclined towards lighter food stuff. In fact I could not use spices in my diet at all. I became thin and would eat less and less. I did not get much sleep at night, and while sleeping would be at the strangest of places in the world.
And then one day this happens.
I was lying on a wooden cot at night trying to fix my mind on the ajna chakra, I went into a stupor then, the next thing I knew was this unbelievable noise inside me. It was as if hundreds of oceans were roaring within me. My entire frame began to shake as a giant force seemed to be travelling upward through my spine. I could watch it ascending, ripping the centers within and rising further up. By then I had become certain that if it got fixed at some point at the navel (the swadhishtana for example, considering my base urges at that time) I would be a goner as far as the world is concerned.
I tried to fix it at the Ajna chakra for what I was worth. The commotion was tremendous. If I was a little braver I would have followed its course through to sahasrara, but I was more concerned about getting out of the state than doing anything with it then. I must have cried out to my grand father to help me, the force rose and wrung my chest and then went further up filling the whole of head with a terrible din. Then my sahasrara chakra seems to have opened up and it began to pour out, it lasted for some considerable time. I thought it would never stop. Then I went out completely. I would never know whether it returned or ebbed out of me fully.
When I became conscious again my mother was standing besides me and she seemed to be in some sort of trance. She would not answer any of my questions and soon went off to her room. The time was past midnight and usually she would be sound asleep by then.
I had aches all over my body for some days afterwards. I felt curiously relieved after the incident. Although I stopped the practice altogether after this, I still haven’t recovered fully from its impact.
That which happened to me might have been the release of a minor portion of the coiled up energy in me. I have never seen it described exactly like this by any one. Most of the practitioners goes with the force, ascending with it and is said to have experienced ecstasy. One yogi has somewhere stated that a case like mine could happen when the emotional part of the force rises. May be he is right.
Emotional or not I did not feel any better for it. I became much worse perhaps. I firmly believe that it is truly a destructive force as far as inner realization is concerned. My experience tells me that it is absolutely unnecessary in seeking truth. Kundalini is this world, it is Maya, you can’t achieve true knowledge with this force. It would make you smug, make you look down upon the rest, you might even obtain ashta siddis with it, but that would only count within the world. That is why the great Buddha never spoke of this though it was known to all in India from the time immemorial.
Not for nothing did Christ decline the offer of Satan of the kingdom of this world, and it is not for nothing that Satan is depicted as the serpent.
Every people knew of this power and its destructive quality. It is much better to leave it alone. The yogis of the middle ages in India rediscovered it because they were cowardly. They should have never done that. Political subjugation can not be overcome by psychical feats. If that was the case the world would have been a better place long ago.