Spontaneous Kundalini Awakening and Shaktipat
[dc]M[/dc]y first experience with kundalini was when I was sixteen years old; I was experimenting with different techniques and all of a sudden, I felt a liquid fire in the perineum. I saw a column of energy ascending and opening the chakras—although at the time I didn’t know what chakras were—but the energy was opening fountains of light at different levels and each level brought a different kind of experience. Near the upper part of my body my inner sight opened and I saw deities with six hands and saw my astral bodies. When the energy reached the point of my fontanelle, I experienced indescribable bliss, but it didn’t stop there. The column of light went out of my head and into two waterfalls falling back on my astral bodies and nourishing them with liquid light. My hands went into mudra postures; I felt electricity in my fingers and I played with manipulating prana, directing the energy back to my body. When I folded my hands with fingertips together I received answers for any question I asked. The rest of that night I spent in indescribable bliss. A week later I saw a book with a drawing of a yogi with energy flowing and chakras opening; I recognized what I had experienced and found the conceptual tools for understanding it. I wanted to share the experience, but nobody around me understood.
That is when my interest in yoga began. I did hatha yoga and various types of meditation for the next couple of years. I made an altar to Shiva and began to pray in Sanskrit. However, I could not get back to the experience that I was craving with my whole soul. None of the teachers I met had had the experience I was seeking. They could teach me techniques, but warned me about playing with kundalini. I did not listen and did moolabhanda, kumbhak, and bhastrika. I experimented with sacred techniques, and this led to my second experience with spontaneous kundalini awakening. I experienced the development of consciousness on this planet in both general and personal terms, from stone to animals—which are completely driven by animal experience and unable to make a conscious choice between good and bad—and finally to the human form. On a personal level, I experienced that when I finally received a human body I felt it as an immense gift because we have intellect, we can distinguish between good and bad and are free to make choices. But I saw that I spent lifetimes wasting my human bodies.
Suddenly the whole process of death and being reborn started to accelerate, death-birth-death-birth over and over again, and out of this pattern a great thought arose: how do I get out of it? This thought seemed to prevail in my last human births, and it was either the last thing I thought in my previous life or was the samskara that came into this life. All of a sudden in this kundalini experience I saw myself sitting in lotus position and burning with the desire, how to get out of this? After this experience, my search began again. I knew I needed a guru and needed a mantra. But again I searched in vain; nobody I met could explain these experiences to me or take me to the heights I was seeking.
So at the age of 22, I decided to leave the spiritual path. For the next nine years, I indulged in various kinds of pleasures, everything the world can offer in terms of temptation. I found fleeting moments of happiness and satisfaction, but I was on the road to perdition. During all those years a subtle craving to get back to my spiritual personality was persistent, but I did not heed this call.
Every worldly dream I had during seven years came true in one year, in 2009. And at that point, I became the most unhappy person on this earth.
I achieved worldly success and everything I wanted. Every worldly dream I had during seven years came true in one year, in 2009. And at that point, I became the most unhappy person on this earth. I spent 2009 in complete unhappiness, depression and frustration. I wanted to figure out what went wrong and sought the help of psychologists, but they couldn’t help me. I was just unhappy.
Then kundalini forced me with great urgency to the path of kundalini maha yoga and Shri Anandi Ma. The Kali energy spent all of 2010 and most of 2011 destroying everything in my life that was an obstacle to this path. It gnawed at me, crushing and destroying any attempt I made to attach to anything. My sense of self was disintegrating and I didn’t know what my future self would be, so I attempted to revive old personality characteristics from the past, but any attempt I made to do was in vain. There was nothing stable that I could hold on to.
I perceive this period as a very important ego-crushing period that readied me for the next stage of my development, the shift from Kali to Durga, the loving Mother. I was so desperate that I made the biggest decision of my life: I risked my job and livelihood to try to find someone who could help me. I felt with my whole being that I had to seek external help, and that is how I met Tarak, one of Ma’s students, in Prague, who said to me, I think I know someone who can help you.
Tarak was the first person to say that to me. He gave me the Hanuman Chalisa and Mantras for Releasing Fear cd’s, and I believed with all my heart that my condition could improve. The Hanuman Chalisa is in fact what I perceive as the beginning of my path back. I used these techniques from the lineage to endure the period until I was able to receive shaktipat in absentia.
The process of preparing to receive shaktipat in absentia had many twists and turns, but after three months the date was set. On that day in mid-December 2011, I didn’t feel anything. I was thinking, did I do something wrong? But I said, I’ll do the Bhut Shuddhi mantra for ten days, at 9:00 PM in my busy schedule. From the first day, I enjoyed every single syllable of the mantra. It was as if I had been given a manual on how to fly a plane, because each syllable gave direction to the energy. I absolutely enjoyed the practice, and during the repetition nothing so dramatic as I had experienced in the past happened. Yet I went out to a business gathering after that first practice and found myself in a different plane of consciousness, stepping into the room feeling very powerful and very light at the same time. This blend of energy attracted people to me and I was the center of attention until 4:00 in the morning. So I said, okay, it’s not as dramatic as I thought it was going to be, but it’s working somehow.
I also started to practice the guru mantra. As soon as I began the practice, the image I got was of someone holding a cobra snake in such a way that you feel its power but you know it cannot hurt you. So the shaktipat is working, I thought! With each mala bead I felt a powerful but mild upsurge of the energy I had known from before, but unlike before I felt wrapped in protection, like being in a cocoon of sweet milk. I couldn’t believe how pleasant it was, as if someone had fulfilled my long, long forgotten dream. I became completely addicted to the guru mantra, and I knew the Guru had fixed me. I felt immense, tremendous relief and gratitude beyond words, and I started to wonder, who can be so powerful that she can contain my kundalini from a distance, when nobody I’ve known throughout my life could get me there? So the desire to meet Ma in person was planted. As soon as I finished my 10 days of the bhut shuddhi mantra, I made arrangements to go to Nikora in early January 2012, to meet a being of such power.
I made this decision blindly because I wanted to see Ma. The rest didn’t matter to me, but once I got to Nikora, I thought, what am I going to be doing for the next twelve days? I was in a predicament with a lot of free time and only two fellow disciples who spoke English. One of those disciples, Prema, told me she was doing anusthan, and this word caught my attention. Out of the blue I decided to do an anusthan and consulted with Ma, who said yes because there were still ten days until my departure. I was a bit appalled by the number of repetitions of the guru mantra that Ma and Bapuji suggested I do each day, thinking in my mind, I don’t want to wear myself out this soon after shaktipat! But I saw Prema’s resolution and commitment and I wondered, what is she doing all day in the anusthan cave? So I decided to do my anusthan in the garden near her cave.
I did ten malas and throughout the whole repetition I felt as if I were sitting in a column of nuclear energy, but despite all the dramatic experience and power, I felt fully protected. Actually during practice I feel my ego shut down for a while and Ma or Guruji actually did the practice.
At the first mala I did of the guru mantra, I felt as if someone switched on a nuclear power plant within me. I was telling myself my body and mind simply cannot endure this tremendous flow of energy. It was unlike anything I had experienced before. But I said to myself, I’m going to stay in this asana and keep on repeating. I did ten malas and throughout the whole repetition I felt as if I were sitting in a column of nuclear energy, but despite all the dramatic experience and power, I felt fully protected. Actually during practice I feel my ego shut down for a while and Ma or Guruji actually did the practice. Over several days I started to enjoy my anusthan, and I started to understand why yogis shut themselves in caves, depriving the senses and using special techniques to have such experiences.
One night I decided to do my japa next to the temple. After maybe 20 repetitions of the guru mantra, I felt as if all the valves in my body opened at the same time. All the energy that was accumulated in the lower chakras suddenly, with great soaring, went up and lifted me from my body. I transcended the body and felt my boundaries change. Although the protection was there all the time, I started to feel a bit uncomfortable and my anxiety pulled me back from the experience. I understood why yogis talk about kundalini as nuclear power or electricity; I felt that nothing in this world is so powerful as this energy. To ground myself I decided to write a couple of emails, and when I entered that room I felt myself in a different kind of consciousness, blessed but also feeling my own impurities pulling me back to ego consciousness, to the body-mind, and to the concept of who I think I am. At that very moment I felt the words of Guruji to be completely true, that only if all the nadis are purified completely can kundalini travel to the sahasrar and the person can reach samadhi. I realized the importance of purity on this path.
I have received great pleasure from being in Ma’s physical presence, but I do not feel it is so important as meeting her in the practice. In the practice, I feel her shakti merged with mine, blazing at me.
I have received great pleasure from being in Ma’s physical presence, but I do not feel it is so important as meeting her in the practice. In the practice, I feel her shakti merged with mine, blazing at me. I feel her presence with every single bead of my mala. When we have darshan, I have so many questions of an esoteric nature, but instead we talk about eggplants and politics! Is this the woman who can manifest Ma Kali? She is sitting there sipping her tea! It’s mindblowing to see her sitting there in person, and then to meet her energetically in the practice.
The difference between spontaneous kundalini awakening and shaktipat is clear to me. In spontaneous kundalini awakening, the energy is trying to push its way to the sahasrar, but it does that by taking you anywhere at any time and at any cost to your comfort. With shaktipat, I feel the tremendous shakti energy only when I sit to practice the guru mantra. The spontaneous kundalini awakening was out of my control, but now the guru mantra is like a trigger. I know that if I do the guru mantra, the energy awakens with force, and as soon as I stop doing the guru mantra, the energy goes back. This is the major and important difference, the level of control and protection. I get my period of cleansing with the guru mantra, and there is an agreement with Ma that only then is the energy superactive. So I do the practice, and then the energy recedes and I go about my day.
The spontaneous kundalini awakening completely destroyed my routines of life, my eating and sleeping patterns, my relationships and my work. In my case, the guru mantra and shakti work together, and during the period of malas I do, they are working at full force as if I have handed in my ticket and boarded the jet aircraft; but as soon as I want to deplane, I can.
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