Kundalini activation: A touch of enlightenment
Stella Logan | October 2018
It was just another Monday as I popped out of the office to buy lunch. After battling the crisp winds of a wintery June and arriving at a nearby food court, I decided to order a laksa to warm myself up. I sat down on a bench with my steamy bowl of yellow goodness, and dug in. It was rush hour and the food court was packed with hungry workers. The background chatter, which was already loud, began increasing in volume. Oddly, it also sounded fuller and vibrant, as though I was sitting in an auditorium. I paused my chewing for a moment. Was there something wrong with my ears? I looked up and glanced at my surroundings. Things were starting to appear brighter as well; almost blinding. Everything felt surreal, so crisp and vivid―yet still very real.
Slowly, the feeling of disturbance gave way to something else; something far more beautiful. It occurred to me that what I was experiencing was purely the expression of life. It was simple, yet magnificent. I felt connected to everyone and everything around me, and I was witness to the gloriousness of it all in ultra-high definition. A low-flying pigeon sailed right past my table and I could only gaze in utter wonderment, tears welling up in my eyes, as I savoured the experience of its wings beating the air, as if in slow motion.
There was nothing in my system that day that could have explained my altered perception―no medication, alcohol or drugs.
But I did attend a Kundalini activation class the day before.
Kundalini, a term from ancient India meaning "coiling like a snake", is said to be an internal potential energy that lies curled and dormant at the base of the spine, until it is awakened by various means such as yoga, meditation, breathing techniques, mantra chanting and energy transmission. An awakening marks the beginning of a process leading to a change of consciousness, profound transformation within oneself and, ultimately, enlightenment. Often described as being "one with everything", enlightenment may be best explained as a state of seeing reality clearly without filters or biases. This clarity dissolves personal concerns, stress, anxiety and emotional patterns, leaving a person more content, grounded and connected in daily life.
I first learnt of these transmission sessions from a friend who had attended one himself and suggested I try it out. His text message to me read: "Words fail for what is really waiting there for you… the gift of life to its very self". Sceptical but highly intrigued, I found myself some days later in a sitting circle alongside 20 other people in a yoga hall in Sydney.
Leading the class was Katrin, a Kundalini facilitator―someone whose Kundalini is already awakened and has the ability to transmit the energy. She explained that we lie down with our eyes closed and, with dimmed lights and background music, she walks around and touches or presses on chakra points (energy centres) or meridian points (energy pathways) on our bodies. We may feel pressure in our head, heat in our body, or tingling feet or hands. This Kundalini awakening will balance and coordinate the chakras, and any pressure or disturbance often reveals an emotional blockage. "Trust the energy," she assured us, "work with it and release it."
Katrin proceeded to tell us that anything can happen in a session. We may cough, cry, scream, laugh or dance. Our bodies may shake. We may randomly do yoga poses, even if we’ve never practised yoga before. Over time, as our blockages clear, we may experience an enhancement of our personal life and spiritual growth. Parts of our heart and soul may heal, or we may gain more clarity and confidence to pursue what is truly aligned with our self.
Kundalini activation classes are springing up everywhere and can largely be attributed to Venant Wong, founder of KAP (Kundalini Activation Process). A former actuary from Sydney and now something of an international rock star in the spiritual community, Venant had been engaged in deep spiritual practice for many years until he discovered that simply being in the presence of transmission masters was enough to throw people into a whole other state of consciousness.
"It was like a free gift, basically," he says. "I went around the world looking for these transmission vehicles, or masters, and it was always amazing. And then at some point my capacity to activate Kundalini in other people just started to happen." Venant now travels around the world running KAP classes and intensive workshops.
"Most people are in their heads," he says. "'I want this kind of success, this kind of work, this kind of relationship'. And then there’s your heart, which is like this faint whisper. You can hear it sometimes, but don’t really notice it most of the time. But if you do enough KAP, what happens is that it gets reversed. What used to be your mental desires, you then think, 'wow, why was I even thinking that?' and instead your feel your heart’s desire. That becomes so obvious and overwhelming, and so you just go and do that. This reversal of mind and heart is a massive change."
He adds, "All you need to do is accept or be open to the possibility that there is an energy beyond what Newtonian physics tell you. That there is an energy field that moves everything. If you’re open to that possibility, then you’ll feel it in a session."
If it sounds a little far-fetched, consider other recognisable holistic practices that are based on energy systems. Acupuncture, for instance, is a traditional Chinese treatment where needles are inserted into specific sites along the body’s meridians to clear energy blockages and encourage the flow of Qi (energy) through the body. Reiki, a Japanese technique, involves an attuned practitioner laying their hands over the body and channeling Ki to increase relaxation and healing. Numerous other energy therapies dating back thousands of years can be found across Asia and Africa.
Albert Szent-Györgi, a prominent scientist of the twentieth century whose work included synthesising Vitamin C, stated in a 1972 lecture: "In every culture and in every medical tradition before ours, healing was accomplished by moving energy." He believed that the missing piece preventing us from understanding and treating major health issues, such as cardiovascular disease and cancer, was energy. Although he won several awards for his scientific discoveries, he received virtually no acknowledgement from the biomedical community for his work on the role of energy in biology.
Kundalini energy is well known in Eastern yogic science, and Western medicine and science has only recently begun to recognise it. In 2011, medical studies were conducted on 300 people attending an intensive Kundalini yoga and meditation retreat, with the purpose of studying Kundalini awakening and its benefits.
The research found that that 85 per cent of participants on average showed a marked recovery from a range of health conditions including anxiety, depression, insomnia, arthritis, chronic headaches and eating disorders. 86 per cent of participants who smoked reported that they had quit smoking. Blood samples taken from those aged over 50 years revealed a 1,300 per cent increase in cellular energy levels; a level that is impossible through any other known means such as exercise, fitness training or yoga, which only affects a maximum of 40 per cent increase in cellular energy.
Furthermore, participants’ DNA tests showed the spontaneous expression of new genes―a feat impossible to reproduce naturally or artificially―with findings including improvement in immune capabilities, memory function, chronic pain and asthma. Electrical brain mappings of subjects experiencing an active Kundalini awakening recorded sharper focusing abilities and extremely rapid multi-processing, with post-assessments showing more effective decision-making, enhanced interpersonal relationships and positive personality trends.
The benefits of attending activation classes speak for themselves, with class-goers overflowing with stories of their own experiences. Larissa, a writer and journalist, says, "During the sessions, I experience a wonderful feeling of peace, joy or bliss. Afterwards, I often get insights or revelations which help me sort out my daily and long-term challenges, and even general questions for my life." Sergio, who struggles with schizophrenia, reveals: "I felt this flowing power in my body, subtle at first and then building, emanating from my heart, back and stomach. I felt more connected with myself than I’ve felt in a while. I found I really benefitted from hearing other people’s emotional outbursts of energy all around me; it made me feel more at ease to allow the same in myself." Clarissa, a psychologist, says, "I would feel the energy moving around in me, then I would bliss out into an expanded state. It was like my soul fragmented or expanded out to the cosmos. I experienced it as full of love and I knew it was 'home'. I feel content and solid now; nothing is lacking."
Since attending classes regularly for the past three months and experiencing something akin to sticking my finger into a live socket every time I go, I too have observed distinct changes in myself. In quiet and reflective moments throughout the day, or when I lie down in bed, I feel a tingling rush of energy coursing upwards through my spine. I am also calmer and more grounded and present. A few weeks ago, my partner realised that his passport was not valid for travel, the day before we were due to fly to Bali. In the hours that followed that horrifying moment, instead of blowing up and being angry and anxious as I might have ordinarily reacted, I remained a Zen monk throughout. It helped us cope with the catastrophe emotionally and mentally, take decisive action to fix the problem, and miraculously we managed to secure another flight within 24 hours and still enjoy a blissful week-long holiday.
Whether or not Kundalini can be precisely measured scientifically, it is difficult to ignore the inspirational changes in those undergoing a Kundalini journey. "When you start living from your heart space," Katrin says, "you only pursue what serves you on a soul level to grow as a person and to live an empowered, happy and fulfilling life."
We can all be inspired to live such a life, and if Kundalini can show us the way, then why not give it a try?