Kundalini Yoga is one of the major components of Tantra Yoga. It is practiced in order to release the visualized energies from the centers called Chakras. These Chakras are seven in numbers and are the pathway to unleash the higher dimensions of human consciousness. It is one of the most powerful tools for enlightenment. The Kundalini Yoga practice begins with the breath and ends with the visualization of the energy center called Bindu in the Sahasrara Chakra.
The main aim of Kundalini Yoga is to get enlightenment. In modern times the word enlightenment has been seen as it is something bigger than what can be desired. This is not true; enlightenment is nothing more than realizing a particular form of knowledge that connects to the supreme.
Does it mean you will get enlightenment through Kundalini Yoga?
It sounds crazy for first-time meditation practitioners. However, with proper intent enlightenment is possible for people living with family too. You don’t need to become a monk in order to get enlightenment. In Indian Spiritual Sociology, there was an idea called Varnashrama Dharma. You just need to accept it and move on with it.
You can click here to read about 4 Varnashrama Dharma. However, if you still feel enlightenment to be a bigger concept. You can accept the following benefits of Kundalini Yoga.
Benefits of Kundalini Yoga.
There are various benefits of Kundalini Yoga. They are mainly physical and spiritual (metaphysical). We shall see the list of both spiritual and physical benefits of Kundalini Yoga.
Physical Benefits of Kundalini Yoga
- Maintains the stress levels in your body.
- Increases your concentration power.
- Gives you better sexual satisfaction.
- Increases your immune response through the Anahata Chakra.
- Makes your metabolism better.
- Your digestive capacity get’s increased.
- Gives you physical strength.
Spiritual/Metaphysical Benefits of Kundalini Yoga
- Fulfills your hidden desires which hamper spirituality.
- Gives you a better understanding of your temperament.
- Fulfills, the four aims of life i.e. Dharma, Artha, Kama, and Moksha.
- A better connection with your internal energy.
- Union of your consciousness with physicality.
- Makes you humble and well respected in society.
However, before starting the journey of Kundalini Yoga, you also need to ask yourself simple questions like what can be the dangerous impacts of practicing Kundalini Yoga? or why kundalini awakening is dangerous? or what are the kundalini awakening side effects? or what happens after kundalini awakening?
The negative impacts happens only if you practice the kundalini yoga in incorrect way.
All the answers lie below. However, if you want to learn only about the kundalini yoga meditation techniques, you can skip to the section from the table of contents by clicking on a particular section. It is advised to read full if you want to learn from the basics to advanced, the first of the basics is Visualization in Kundalini Tantra Yoga.
Visualization, the first step in Kundalini Tantra Yoga
Visualization refers to creating an image of a chosen meditative object. However, this image is not in the form of direct imagination. Mostly, it is about using your intelligence to feel the source of power from which various energies originate.
Let’s have an example, whenever someone asks you directly for any place, you visualize instantly and tell that person about that direction. How you got that direction in the Brain? I mean what kind of vibration you had? What kind of motion of chemicals you had? Or what kind of biological activity triggered it. Can you understand that intelligence within you?
It is tough unless you actualize and understand your own existence. Or, a simpler process is, you can just create counter visualization of literal image for that process within your mind. Let’s see a small story to understand it in a better way.
There was a guy named Birkha Bahadur, he was a great martial artist. His teacher used to show him a lotus flower while practicing the kicks. One day, he was fighting with one of his greatest opponents, he was losing. Fortunately, his teacher had a lotus flower with him. He showed that lotus flower from the front of the arena. He realized how intense the practice was. As a result, he knocked out the opponent.
Moral of the story: Visualization of manual objects have an ability to trigger and activate the hidden potential.
In Kundalini Yoga, one has to visualize the petals of the lotus for every process associated with each energy center. In modern terms, this energy center is a combined hormone in the endocrine gland and the nervous system. I shall explain each of these energy centers of Kundalini Yoga in detail.
These energy centers have hidden feminine powers.
Feminine power? Now, what is this feminine power and its relationship between Kundalini Yoga?
In one of our previous articles, we had discussed in detail about the perspective on Purusha and Prakriti, the union of consciousness and energy.
You can click here to read about how the masculine and feminine forces are differentiated in Indian Philosophy.
In the Tantric Traditions, the power called Shakti is always visualized as a feminine force. It is coupled with consciousness for creation, preservance and destruction.
Coupling of consciousness and power.
The word consciousness hits hard in the mind. Feels like it is some part of the bigger world. However, coupling of consciousness and power can be new to many of the experienced practitioners too.
We can understand it in simpler manner.
In school days, you learn about different subjects. Your teacher probably gave you assignments too. You look into the books to solve that assignment. The ability to use your power to look for the answer in books exactly couples with your consciousness. This means you used some form of your power to get things done.
In Kundalini Yoga, we unleash all the major energies towards the supreme union with the supreme consciousness. The Kundalini has to channeled from a central channel called Sushumna. This makes a person super aware about own existence and the purpose of life. We shall see each of the energy centers.
Chakras and their importance in Kundalini Yoga.
Muladhara Chakra lies near the base of your skeleton. The main aim of Kundalini Yoga is to move the conscious energy from the Muladhara Chakra to up via the Sushumna channel.
Gland , Hormones and function associated with Muladhara Chakra.
The Muladhara Chakra is all about the Gland that gives you male/female identity. This is Testis in the case of males and Ovary in the case of females. The Muladhara Chakra is the base of your physical existence. The literal meaning of Muladhara is also similar, Mula means main and adhara means root cause.
Some of the web articles might tell you that Muladhara Chakra is all about Adrenal Glands, you should understand that there has been no formal research or whatsoever on which chakra is what? In this article, I have conveyed literal understanding based on my personal experiences with Indian philosophy which I feel is correct based on a system of proof (pramanas) of Indian Philosophy.
Coming back to the article, the Root Cause of your bodily existence is your physical identity as a male or female. What you do, how you behave in nature are all decided by this chakra. Raising your consciousness above this Chakra in Kundalini Yoga means, you are completely aware of this root cause in you.
The Root Mantra Associated with this Chakra is Lam. The root word Lam means to externalize. You need to externalize your physical energies in order to move your consciousness from this Chakra to the other. Given below is the image of the Muladhara Chakra Mandala. In the center is the root word. Basically, raising the energy from here means you have understood the root cause of your existence and the purpose of your life.
Method to cleanse Muladhara chakra.
Use your physical energy for good of the society to make it reach the sushumna or the central channel for upward movement.
Svadhisthana Chakra in the Kundalini Yoga.
The Second Chakra in the Kundalini Yoga is Svadhisthana Chakra. The literal meaning of Svadhisthana is self residing place.
Gland , Hormones and function associated with Svadhisthana Chakra.
The gland associated with this Chakra is the Adrenal Gland. As per the Good Therapy website, the adrenal glands release hormones related to stress and anxiety. This includes epinephrine, adrenaline, and cortisol.
Along with these hormones it also releases androgens which we call sex hormones. They play a major role in the development of sexual characteristics, they can be converted into estrogen in females.
This Chakra in Kundalini Yoga is all about your self-owned characteristics. How you behave sexually, and how you show yourself to be in society.
The Root Mantra associated with this chakra in Kundalini Yoga is Vam. The literal meaning of this root to release. Your hidden desires are associated with this Chakra itself. When you break the boundary of this chakra, you will control your stress levels for the societal balance and match the sexual characteristics with your partner.
Method to cleanse.
The method to cleanse this chakra is to practice Tantra Yoga. You can click here to read about Tantra Yoga. If you feel your sexual desires are fulfilled just chant the root mantra while meditating. It is the toughest chakra to conquer as the deity associated with it is the preserver, Vishnu.
Manipura Chakra, the center of the fire in Kundalini Yoga.
The Manipura meaning of Manipura is the city of Mani. Here I didn’t try to make literal sense of the word Mani because directly the meaning of the whole concept would be different. Most of the web articles make a direct translation of Mani to be Jewel. Yes, it is jewel only but Mani is any special kind of Jewel that has different characteristics. We got a mention of a lot of Jewels in Hindu Philosophy. Two of them being Kaustubha Mani of Vishnu and Naga Mani of the snakes. These Manis divide and share their characteristics with the bearer.
So, the Manipura Chakra in Kundalini Yoga is all about sharing the characteristics of different types of your natural/artificial activities to the bearer that is you.
Gland, Hormones, and function associated with Manipura Chakra.
The gland associated with Manipura Chakra is Pancreas. Its work is to break down what you have eaten so that it can be shared with the other parts of the body. Your Manipura chakra makes sure, there is the proper division of the resources in the body through digestion. The Manipura chakra is also about maintaining your energy which is required for the functioning of Society.
The Root Mantra of Manipura Chakra is Ram which means energy, work, and fire. Moving your conscious energy from this Chakra means you are aware of how the division of resources takes place. Physically, you shall have better digestion too.
Method to cleanse Manipura Chakra.
The best method of cleansing Manipura chakra in Kundalini Yoga is to chant the mantra, Ram. This word also has the ability to cleanse all the chakras. You should also do your works without any expectation, this will center your spiritual energy towards Sushumna.
Anahata Chakra in the Kundalini Yoga.
Anahata Chakra is the fourth Chakra in Kundalini Yoga. The meaning of Anahata is unharmed. It is located near your heart.
Gland, Hormones, and function associated with Anahata Chakra.
The gland associated with the Anahata Chakra is Thymus. The major role of the thymus is balancing your immune system by secreting required bodies. It protects you from external diseases. Basically, if you move up your conscious energy from the Anahata Chakra you will be able to become disease-free.
Protection is also associated with Dharma. So in the Anahata Chakra, you understand your own dharma and protect it from external influences. Those who have better Anahata Chakra are unharmed.
The Root Mantra associated with it is Yam which means monitoring. It is also the other word for the keeper of Dharma. The keeper of Dharma is majorly responsible for the protection of those who do good.
Method to cleanse Anahata Chakra in Kundalini Yoga.
The best method to cleanse this chakra is to monitor your actions. You can also chant the root word in the meditation.
Vishuddhi Chakra in Kundalini Yoga.
Vishuddhi Chakra is located at the base of your throat. The meaning of Vishuddhi is immensely pure.
Gland, Hormones, and function associated with Vishuddhi Chakra.
The glands associated with this Chakra in Kundalini Yoga are Thyroid and Para Thyroid glands. According to the Inner Body Website, the thyroid gland and parathyroid glands are part of the endocrine glands located in the base of the neck. These glands play a very crucial role in maintaining the body’s homeostasis by producing the hormones that regulate the metabolism of the body and free calcium levels. Homeostasis is the state of steady internal, physical, and chemical conditions maintained by living systems.
Basically, the analogy in Kundalini Yoga is: The purity is steady-state of internal, physical, and chemical conditions within our body. In Hindu metaphysics, this Chakra is the gateway towards other dimensions of existence called Vaitarni.
The root mantra of this Chakra is Ham which means to keep going. When the suffix Sa is added to the word Ham. It becomes Hamsa also known as Ajapa Gayatri by the Upanishads. So when you feel the Hamsa word in the exhalation and inhalation, this becomes the most powerful mantras of the Kundalini Yoga.
Method to cleanse.
Method to cleanse this chakra is to feel the words Ham while inhalation and Sa in exhalation.
Ajna Chakra, the point of instructions in Kundalini Yoga.
Ajna Chakra is located in the center of your forehead. It is also known by the name of Agya Chakra in Kundalini Yoga. The meaning of the Ajna word is instructions. Some of the Philosophers have often called it the seat of the soul and some call it a third eye.
Gland, Hormones, and function associated with Ajna Chakra.
As per the research, the main function of the pineal gland is to receive information about the state of the light-dark cycle from the environment. It further conveys this information to produce and secrete the hormone called melatonin which is responsible for your sleep.
The Sleep is part of your consciousness. You can read about sleep and dreams from here.
Metaphysically, the Ajna Chakra is all about the center of time which says what to do and when to do it. It connects with time. In Kundalini Yoga, the third eye is open in all the keepers of time. These keepers of time include goddess Mahakali, Bhairava, and Lord Shiva himself.
The root mantra for Ajna Chakra in Kundalini Yoga is Om. This is the highest mantra in Hinduism. It represents the state of consciousness in every being. The states are namely Jagrit or wakefulness, Svapna or Dreams, Sushupti or Sub-Conscious mind and Turiya means beyond all. You can click on the links on the names to read about these states from Scientific Monk.
Method to cleanse the Ajna Chakra.
The best method to cleanse Ajna chakra is to chant OM, Buddhists can chant OM Mane Padme Hum.
Sahasrara Chakra is the 7th and the final chakra where the Kundalini Energy unites with its Shiva. The meaning of Sahasrara is thousandfold. It is the center of our own reality in Kundalini Yoga.
Gland, Hormones, and function associated with Sahasrara Chakra.
Pituitary Gland and Hypothalamus are mainly associated with the Sahasrara chakra. However, as the word suggests, there are many more glands associated with it. These could be probably the exocrine glands too. Some of the scholars say there are a total of 114 in numbers but all should exist within the Sahasrara only. Let’s focus on two major ones.
Within Sahasrara Chakra there lies another three main Chakras namely Guru Chakra, Nirvana Chakra, and Bindu Visarga. The Guru Chakra is definitely associated with the Pituitary Gland. This Gland is also known as the master gland. So, it makes sense to call it a Guru Chakra in Kundalini Yoga. The major function of this gland is to regulate the activity of other endocrine glands. It secrets the trophic hormones which are responsible for stimulating other endocrine glands.
The Nirvana Chakra and Bindu Visarga is associated with the hypothalamus. There are various hormones associated with the hypothalamus. You can click here to read all from Healthline. One of the major things that the hypothalamus secretes is oxytocin, which is the hormone of ultimate satisfaction and love. The feeling of divine love and ecstasy is only produced when there is a perfect union between masculine and feminine forces i.e. Shiva and Shakti. Here it is your kundalini and consciousness. What if you can create oxytocin on your meditative will? It is obvious that you will feel the supreme ecstasy.
Another function of the hypothalamus is the connection of your nervous system with the endocrine glands. This means your awareness and responses to society, life, sex, the universe, etc. lies here only. This connecting point is the Nirvana Chakra or the end of the Sushumna channel. It helps you in practicing Samyama, the Dharana, Dhyana, and Samadhi at the same time.
The feeling of ecstasy on meditative will is called the tantra version of enlightenment. When your awareness reaches the Bindu of Bindu Visarga chakra or the final point of existence, then only there is ecstasy.
The Root mantra for Sahasrara Chakra is Om itself, however it is like silent version of Om which is only about point. This point is one sided focus on the meditative awareness.
Method to cleanse.
The method to cleanse this chakra is to practice the chanting of the word OM. In your free time, you can also listen to the chantings of OM or Veda Mantras. I have given the video. You can listen from below.
Meditation Techniques and Poses for Kundalini Yoga.
There is only one meditation technique for a perfect Kundalini Yoga. In various Tantra Books, it is referred to as Kriya Yoga. However, all the Yogas like, Jnana, Bhakti, and Karma Yoga come under Kriya Yoga only. Let’s learn the first major Kriya Yoga.
One: A proper location and dress.
A proper location and a proper dress-up are required in order to start with Kundalini Yoga. You should choose a place of no disturbance.
Two: Feel the sandals of Guru in heart.
You should first choose a Diety. For Buddhists it is Buddha or Padmasambhava, each religion has its own Guru. You should chant the mantra suggested below by creating divine sandals of your chosen deity as Guru. Remember, the chosen diety should be the one with whom you are greatly connected with the heart. This practice is done in order to make a base in your meditative awareness.
Anantha samsara samudhra thara naukayithabhyam guru bhakthithabhyam,Adi-Sankaracharya
Vairagya samrajyadha poojanabhyam, namo nama sri guru padukabhyam.
The translation is as follows.
The crossing of this Endless ocean of samsara (this mundane world) is enabled
by the boat that is sincere devotion to Guru
Showing me the way to the valuable dominion of renunciation,
O dear Guru, I bow to thy holy sandals.
Three: Take any suitable Asana.
There are four major asanas mentioned in some of the Yogatattva Upanishad. They are Siddhasana, Padmasana, Simhasana and Bhadrasana. However, it is advised to do Padmasana, the lotus posture.
Given below is the picture of Padmasana. I know it would be tough to practice Padmasana for the first time. Those who cannot practice Padmasana can practice Sukhasana (pose of comfortability)
Four: Kriya Yoga.
- Take deep breaths 10 times.
- Feel or have a sensation of motion of your breath going inside and coming outside.
- While the breath goes inside focus on the breath coming outside or
- While the breath goes outside focus on the breath coming outside.
- That’s it. Practice these four steps of Kriya Yoga daily.
- You will start feeling the vibrations in the energy centers in a few days or months, you can have different sensations than others.
- Keep reading metaphysical texts like Upanishads or texts of your own religion.
- If you forget about the function of each chakra you can come back to Scientific Monk and read this article.
Side effects of Kundalini Yoga, if not practiced properly.
There can be various side effects of Kundalini Yoga if it is not properly practiced. The major problem can be a misbalance in hormonal activities and nervous breakdown. All the benefits given in the first part of the Article will be in a negative way. Following is the list.
- Increases the stress levels in your body.
- Decreases your concentration power.
- Mental breakdown.
- No connection with your internal energy.
- Endless desires.
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