?In our ongoing study of normal kundalini activity and abnormal states such as kundalini emergency syndrome, we have observed that kundalini exhibits four modes of functioning:
In dormant functioning, you can move attention into a vehicle of consciousness, but there is no energetic activation by the kundalini. In this state, only the functions of the Conscious mind and memory are active.
In background functioning, the higher faculties of the Subconscious, Metaconscious and the Lower Subtle Band of the Superconscious mind operate and are activated by the kundalini, but you are not aware of their functioning unless your attention is focused upon them.
In focal functioning, you are aware of the functioning of the vehicles of consciousness even while your attention is in the waking state. You spontaneously experience an inflow of knowledge and inspiration from these vehicles; you become aware of the content of these vehicles.
For example, if your intellect were energized by the kundalini, you would become aware of your reflection and critical thinking on a project you are working on or topic you are studying.
In intensified functioning, the kundalini is fully awakened and rises like a stream of light and fire into the higher vehicles. Your attention is passively absorbed into this stream and rises with it.
Plotted on a scale of potential kundalini arousal, thee four modes of kundalini functioning appear as follows:
|Intensity of Arousal
|Activity of Kundalini
|Ground state of awareness
|Concentrating on these centers brings awareness of the content of these bands of the mind without the energetic arousal of the kundalini
|Present time awareness
|Gateway to Subconscious
|Memory and personal unconscious
|Seat of kundalini in the Subconscious mind (kanda)
|Concentrating on this center stimulates the kundalini into activity
|Chakras up to the swastika center ()
|Instinctual, intuitive wisdom of the chakras works in the background
|Pituitary center of the Subconscious mind
|Accesses the experiences of the attentional principle in meditation
|Pineal center of the Subconscious mind
|Accesses the experiences of the spirit in meditation and prayer
|Crown chakra and transcerebral seed atom
|Accesses the intuitional stream from the Soul and brings remembrance of the Soul's presence
|Centers of the etheric body of the Metaconscious mind
|Background operation of the faculties of perception, ideomotor movement, and accessing memory, seen for example, in rehearsal for dancing or athletic performance, or remembering a movie script, poem or speech prior to presentation
|Emotional faculties of the Metaconscious mind
|Background operation of the faculties of the desire body, persona and conscience
|Mental faculties of the Metaconscious mind
|Background operation of the concrete mind, intellect and personal intuition
|Background operation of volition, self-programming or goal-setting
|Awareness of the Kosas, the Astral, Causal and Mythological Bands of the Lower Subtle Realm
|Background operation of these centers of the Superconscious mind, bringing about the automatic and effortless functioning of the flow state
|Activation of the golden flower and the kundalini center in the Anandamayakosa
|Stimulation of the kundalini center by concentration, breathing, or mantra intensifies the activity of the kundalini energy. With this level of activation, you become aware of movement of energy in the spinal tube with sensations of warmth or pleasurable tingling.
|Inflow of impressions from the chakras of the Subconscious mind
|You receive intuitional knowledge and insights from the chakras of the Subconscious mind
|Inflow of impressions from the attentional principle and the astral body
|You become aware of the operation of the intentional faculty of the attentional principle, psychic impressions from the astral senses, and images from the faculties of imagination and visualization
|Inflow of impressions from the spirit
|You become aware that your spirit is praying or supplicating on behalf of others. You may deeply feel your faith in God and your love and devotion for God. You may become aware that your spirit is having a dialog with God.
|Inflow of impressions from the etheric body of the Metaconscious mind
|You become aware of your experiences in a state of reverie. You may find yourself deeply reflecting on those experiences.
|Inflow of impressions from the emotional bands of the Metaconscious mind
|Impressions from the desire body (your resolve and firm commitment), persona (role-play and humor) and conscience (introspection and examination of your values) come into your conscious awareness.
|Inflow of impressions from the mental bands of the Metaconscious mind
|Impressions from the concrete mind (planning, scheduling and accomplishing goals), intellect (abstract thinking, study and problem solving) and personal intuition (insight into your feelings and beliefs) come into your conscious awareness.
|Inflow of impressions from the volition and the Self
|You become aware of impressions from your volitional center as your experience of making choices or decisions. You may also experience the clear mirroring of the Self, by which you gain insights into who you are as a person.
|Inflow of impressions from the impressions from the Kosas, particularly the Manomayakosa and the Vijnanamayakosa
|You become aware of a stream of creative ideas from the Manomayakosa or revelations of the wisdom of Nature or the meaning of scriptures from the Vijnanamayakosa.
|Inflow of impressions from the higher levels of the Superconscious mind, which may appear to you as archetypal forms such as angels, gods, or goddesses.
|You become aware of the revelation of your Soul's intuitive knowledge. This may also grant creative inspiration, appearing in different forms such as music, literature, poetry, philosophical or religious insights.
|At this stage, the kundalini energy leaps the gap between the individual stream to the cosmic stream. This awakens awareness of your ensouling entity, powerfully connecting you with it.
|This grants a flash or glimpse of the Soul in its essential nature. This opens a doorway into the eternal present of the Soul. The Soul's energy and bliss may come into your awareness, giving you a peak experience.
|The kundalini withdraws its five streams  from the Conscious mind and rises through the Subconscious mind to the swastika center. As the kundalini energy intensifies, it may press through the unawakened chakras up into the crown center.
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the chakras of the Subconscious mind. You may see these centers as lotus flowers, opening and becoming enlivened by the kundalini energy.
|The kundalini rises through the centers of the Metaconscious mind, pushing through to the voidness of being (passive state of the Self).
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the centers of the Metaconscious mind. The faculties of the Metaconscious mind temporarily shut down and are nourished by Light. You may feel as if a serpent is slowly rising upward through the spinal tube as you open into this band of the mind.
|The kundalini rises through the Kosas, the higher vehicles of the Lower Subtle Realm, and unites with the cosmic stream in the temple of the Divine Mother.
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the Lower Subtle realm. You may have visions of yantras of mandalas, mythological motifs of primitive cultures, or vistas of the inner Planes.
|The Kundalini rises into the vehicle of the Subtle Realm.
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the middle and upper bands of the Subtle Realm, depending on the development of this vehicle. You may see mythological motifs from different cultures, or you may see terrifying images from the Lower Astral of monsters and demons. As the kundalini rises into this form, it may activate the Subtle Realm octaves of volition. If this is your cutting edge of spirituality, the kundalini unites with your Soul Spark at this level.
|The Kundalini rises into the Planetary Realm up to the presence of the Soul or the Monad.
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the Planetary Realm, and you glimpse your awakened vehicles at this level. Your abilities in these vehicles are activated. You gain union with the Soul (Atma Samadhi) which confers enlightenment. If you have developed yourself to the level of the Monad, you will alternately awaken at this level (Paramatma Samadhi).
|The Kundalini energy rises into the Cosmic Sphere. It may awaken the cosmic consciousness nucleus of identity (sacral attunement), the Divine Eye Center (thalamic attunement) or into the Astral Soul (cerebral attunement), depending on how the kundalini energy is activated and directed.
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the vehicles of the First Cosmic Initiation. You may be drawn into union with cosmic consciousness, the Divine Eye center, or the Astral Soul, and experience the awakening of spiritual powers at this level. Yogi Preceptors may intentionally awaken and direct the kundalini into one of these three centers—this intentional induction of kundalini ascension is called Shaktipat.
|The Kundalini energy rises to the higher octaves of the Cosmic Sphere, up to the Fifth Cosmic Initiation, where the meditator experiences the God Consciousness nucleus of identity, up into the presence of the Masters of the Cosmic Hierarchy, ultimately merging into the Light of the Brahma Jyoti.
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the higher bands of the Cosmic Sphere, where you behold visions of these ecstatic realms and experience the awakening of your spiritual abilities at these levels. Shaktipat from a Cosmic Master typically awakens these octaves
|The kundalini energy rises into the Supracosmic seed atom of a Dominant Kundalini Supracosmic Path .
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the union with the Supracosmic seed atom on one of the paths of the Supracosmic Sphere, awakening the powers of this exalted realm. A Guru established at the summit of a Supracosmic Path typically awakens this octave of the kundalini.
|The kundalini energy rises to activate a center in the Transcendental Sphere
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the one of the Transcendental Path, from the Bridge Path to T7. Those rare meditators who experience the ascension of the kundalini to these sublime levels may gain union with their Transcendental ensouling entity, which is called Sahaja Samadhi.
|The kundalini energy merges into its origin. We call this state the Sat Guru Swami stage.
|Your attention is spontaneously absorbed into the ocean of Divine Shakti. Your attention is suspended in the Holy Void that existed before Creation (Avayakta Loka).
Once kundalini is awakened, it permits you to utilize the faculties beyond the Conscious mind during background activation and to receive the inflow of intuition from your higher vehicles of consciousness during focal activation.
Intensified activation induces profound states of meditation through absorption of your attention and concomitantly purifies, awakens, and activates the abilities within the vehicles through which the kundalini passes.
Intensified activation can be augmented when certain factors facilitate the likelihood that the kundalini will become concentrated to the point where it will powerfully rise upwards as current of light and fire.
Factors that augment the likelihood that the kundalini will reach the stage of intensification include:
(1) Observance of celibacy
(2) Body purification, fasting, cleansing the body through hatha yogic kriyas
(3) Breathing exercises (pranayama) that do not directly stimulate the kundalini, but that clear the etheric meridians and nadis
(4) Concentration of attention on chakras of inner vehicles
(5) Careful control of diet, eating only pure sattvic foods
(6) Practice of sustained, non-moving coitus (maithuna, karezza) by those who do not observe celibacy
(7) Performing selfless service for a Kundalini Master, who grants Shaktipat; or hearing the discourses and sitting in the presence of a Kundalini Master
(8) Powerful longing to achieve God Realization and great love for the spiritual Master (bhakti)
Intensified activation can be produced by discrete methods that stimulate the seat of the kundalini in the Subconscious mind (kanda), the kundalini center in the Anandamayakosa, or the vortex of cosmic kundalini in the Temple of the Divine Mother in the Lower Subtle Realm.
The intentional concentrating of the kundalini energy through an attunement, called Shaktipat, can also produce it.
Factors that produce intensified activation include:
(1) Hyperventilative breathing (breath of fire, rebirthing, holodynamic breathing)
(2) Concentration on inner chakras coupled with anatomical squeezing or striking of these centers (bandhas), or powerful breathing into that center
(3) Use of mantras that open the channels of the kundalini or clear blockages in the chakras
(4) Use of breathing up and down the cerebrospinal axis
(5) Using the kundalini mantra on the breath
(6) Receiving a charged object from a Kundalini Master
(7) Receiving the touch of a Kundalini Master
(8) Receiving Light Immersion or an attunement from a Kundalini Master
Provided that your vehicles are properly balanced, periodic intensification of the kundalini energy permits you to bring awareness into their higher vehicles.
This gently rising current of energy activates, purifies and empowers these vehicles of consciousness, and ultimately awakens awareness up to the presence of the Soul.
When the kundalini energy reaches the presence of the Soul, it confers enlightenment.
Certain meditation practices, particularly transformational methods that operate outside the cutting edge of spirituality such as bija mantra, Kriya Yoga, and Nadamic practice in the Transcendental Sphere, may misalign the vehicles of consciousness.
In some cases, this may create an energetic short circuit that (a) maintains the kundalini energy in an intensified state and (b) fixes or locks it in a higher center.
This fixation of the kundalini is usually targeted for a selected ensouling entity or nucleus of identity.
In some cases, however, seed atoms of vehicles of consciousness are also used as fixation points for the kundalini energy.
While theoretically the seed atom of any vehicle of consciousness could be selected as a fixation point for kundalini energy, in actual practice an ensouling entity or a nucleus of identity is chosen because of their integrative functions.
Some of the major kundalini fixation points are shown below. [In the table, we will use the abbreviations for the identity states: EE for ensouling entity, NOI for Nucleus of Identity, and VOC for a seed atom of a vehicle of consciousness.]
|Who Uses It
|Occult Adepts (Lower Astral Plane)
|Psychic Seed Atom
|Psychic guides, channeled "entities"
|Ministers invoking the Holy Spirit, and saints during the 1st Exoteric and Mesoteric Planetary Initiation
|Glorified "Moon Soul"
|Mystery School Teachers (called Magus or the Lesser Adept) of the 1st Esoteric Initiation
|Ascended Masters and Superphysical Adepts of the 2nd Planetary Initiation
|Planetary Adept Masters and their advanced disciples who minister to those undergoing the 3rd Planetary Initiation
|Planetary Adept Masters and their advanced disciples who minister to those undergoing the 4th Planetary Initiation—this type of ministry is very rare
|Planetary Adept Masters and their advanced disciples who minister to those undergoing the 5th Planetary Initiation
|Planetary and Solar Adept Masters and their advanced disciples who minister to those undergoing the Transplanetary Initiation
|Yogi Preceptors (particularly Kundalini Yoga or Raja Yoga traditions) of the 1st Cosmic Initiation and Supracosmic Gurus linked with those traditions
|Divine Eye Center
|Yogi Preceptors (particularly Kriya Yoga traditions) of the 1st Cosmic Initiation and Supracosmic Gurus linked with those traditions
|Yogi Preceptors (particularly Agni Yoga or Integral Meditation traditions) of the 1st Cosmic Initiation and Supracosmic Gurus linked with those traditions; and Cosmic Masters
|Supracosmic Seed Atom
|Supracosmic Gurus (particularly those of Kundalini dominant paths)
|Transcendental ensouling entity of the Bridge Path and Transcendental Paths T-1 to T5
|Advanced Initiates on these paths—this type of ministry is very rare
|Mahatmas or higher Initiates on T7
We have elsewhere discussed problems arising from remaining in altered states of awareness as are practiced in religious cults. We therefore also do not recommend fixing the kundalini energy in higher vehicles for sustained periods.
We believe that this fixation of kundalini energy should be reserved for purification and activation of a vehicle prior to performing spiritual work (sadhana) in that band of the Continuum.
Short-term immersion in these higher octaves, for example, introducing chelas to higher octaves of bring as we do in the Mudrashram® Advanced Course in Meditation and the Satsang Program Home Study Course, appears to be benign.
But sustained spiritual work with unfoldment of the ensouling entities and nuclei of identity at these higher octaves of being does produce a number of problems [see The Cutting Edge of Spirituality.]
Kundalini syndromes are a common undesirable result of these practices, particularly when a seed atom of a vehicle of consciousness, a nucleus of identity, or ensouling entity is moved out of alignment with the native axis of the cutting edge of spirituality.
Kundalini syndromes appear to arise from two distinct sources.
The first type derives from the sustained withdrawal of energy from the centers of the Conscious mind.
The second type arises from material entering consciousness from the unconscious bands of the mind in an uncontrolled manner.
We will discuss each to clarify these mysterious effects.
Kundalini Energy Withdrawal – When kundalini energy is shunted upward and fixed at a higher center, one of the common results is that one or more of the five currents that connect the centers of the Conscious mind with the kundalini begin to withdraw.
This kundalini energy withdrawal disrupts different aspects of Conscious mind functioning, affecting perception, physiological functioning, mood, cognition, and the sense of identity and memory.
These withdrawal effects are summarized below.
|Kundalini Energy Current
|Common effects during sustained withdrawal of kundalini energy currents
|Waking State of Awareness
|Heightened sensory awareness, illusions of perception, hallucinations, passive withdrawal in a trance state where you cannot think or act
|Physical seed atom
|Physiological functioning, with secondary effects on mood and cognition
|Quadrant A - glandular axis, disruption of hormonal functioning (4)
Quadrant B -autonomic nervous system arousal of the 12 organs, disruption or dysregulation of organ functioning (5)
Quadrant C - central and peripheral nervous system, impacting movement, sensation and neurological integration (6)
Quadrant D - etheric energetic coordination and integration of these three systems, influencing integrated functioning and behavior (7)
|Emotional seed atom
|Spontaneous memories of traumatic incidents, absorption in reverie or fantasy, sustained states of euphoria or depression; anxiety states, phobias, and panic attacks; feelings of being pulled into oceanic states of terror and non-existence.
|Mental seed atom
|Cognition and memory
|Cessation of reality testing leading to uncritical acceptance of suggestions; interference with the ability to analyze, think critically or make decisions; difficulty in solving math and analytical problems that require the use of reason; inability to recall facts, faces or life experiences; paranoid ideation; sense that you are losing control of your mind; entering into the vacuum state of mind where you cannot think
|Egoic seed atom
|State of identity and memory
|States of dissociation marked by feelings that normal roles and possessions have no meaning; detachment from primary relationships with preoccupation with self (narcissism); and feelings that the environment or the body is not real (derealization). You may also feel that you cannot operate through the body anymore; emotions, thinking and memories may seem to be alien, as if occurring to someone else; terror that you are dying and losing control (ego death). This may culminate in fusion with a higher state of identity with inability to move or operate the physical body (catatonia).
When the kundalini enters intensified activity and becomes fixed in higher centers, the withdrawal of energy from the functional centers of the Conscious mind appears to play a role in many of its mysterious incapacitating symptoms seen in kundalini syndromes.
But other symptoms appear to be manifestations of emergence phenomena.
Emergence Phenomena – This type of kundalini syndrome arises when material from the unconscious zone of the mind begins to pour over the threshold of awareness and influences movement, perception, speech, mood, and thinking. Examples of the some of the wide variety of reported symptoms are tabulated below.
|Jerking of limbs, hopping like a frog, spontaneous adoption of yoga posturing (asanas) or hand gestures (mudras)
|Visual illusions, such as movement of surfaces (e.g., walls are "breathing" or undulating); blending of senses (synesthesia - e.g., seeing music); or vision of energetic fields around people and objects (auras)
|Spontaneous processing of feelings; reliving traumatic experiences; intensification of emotions such as rage, terror, grief or self-hatred; immersion in guilt or shame; rapid shifting between euphoria and despair
|Spontaneous uttering of irrational speech (neologisms), speaking in an unknown tongue (glossolalia), or involuntarily chanting mantras
|Reception of an array of images or disjointed ideas; intuitive or creative inspiration; visions of spiritual beings such as ghosts, demons, angels, gods or goddesses or other archetypal forms
Meditators focusing their attention and crossing the threshold into the unconscious zone of the mind may encounter varied phenomena, and may be able to demonstrate several different types of these emergence phenomena voluntarily.
For example, they can train themselves to see auras around objects and people. They can turn glossolalia on and off at will. They may be able to make postures that capture a mood, or dramatize one of their issues buried in the unconscious.
This ability to voluntarily enter the unconscious mind and interact with its contents has been used by hypnotherapists and psychotherapists to change behavior and treat anxiety and other affective disorders.
In those who have not perturbed the sensitive balance of their vehicles of consciousness, the unconscious mind stays on its side and does not trespass over the boundaries of consciousness.
In states of vehicular imbalance, however, the material of unconscious mind floods conscious awareness and cannot be voluntarily turned off.
While this material may seen to ebb and flow, passing through episodes of greater and lesser intensity; for periods of short and sustained duration, it never goes away fully.
We suggest that this variation in content and duration may parallel the opening of bands of the unconsciousness as an aspect of consciousness—a seed atom of a vehicle of consciousness, a nucleus of identity, or an ensouling entity—is moved out of synchrony with the cutting edge of spirituality.
This splitting off of an aspect of consciousness dredges materials out of successive bands of the unconscious mind behind the cutting edge of spirituality.
This is graphically shown in the figure below.
When this occurs, the volitional functions embedded in the Conscious mind (ego), Metaconscious mind (Self), and Superconscious mind (cutting edge ensouling entity) cannot control this material as it arises outside its sphere of influence.
These contents of the unconsciousness pour into conscious awareness uncontrolled, moving the individual from a state of order and stability to a state of continual encounter and process.
We have seen that kundalini syndromes can be produced as the direct result of withdrawal of the kundalinic energy from the Conscious mind with sustained fixation in a higher octave of awareness, or from uncontrolled emergence phenomena.
We therefore urge seekers to proceed with great caution when adopting spiritual practices that can:
(1) Move seed atoms of vehicles of consciousness, nuclei of identity, or ensouling entities of other octaves of being out of alignment with the cutting edge of spirituality
(2) Fix or lock the kundalini in its intensified activity mode in higher centers for sustained periods of time
We believe it is important for aspirants and disciples to have a clear understanding of the different states of potential arousal of the Kundalini Shakti.
We also hold that they should be clear about the abnormal states that can occur when the kundalini attempts to compensate for vehicular imbalances or sustained fixation in a higher center with energetic intensification.
We offer this Kundalini Arousal Scale and discussion about factors that may contribute to kundalini syndromes as a heuristic tool to promote study, further inquiry, and candid self-examination.
For those who may already be in the throes of kundalini syndromes, we do offer a consultation and attunement that may assist some individuals to return to more normalized functioning. For more information about this service, click here.
(1) The Swastika Center dwells at the very top of spinal tube in the chakra system of the Subconscious Mind. Viewed from the top, it resembles the image shown below.
(2) The energy of the Kundalini Shakti connects with the five centers of the Conscious mind: waking state of awareness, the physical seed atom, the emotional seed atom, the mental seed atom, and the egoic seed atom.
(3) On each of the nine active Supracosmic Sphere Planes, there is one path where kundalini is the dominant modality for spiritual awakening.
(4) The hormonal axis influences the seven endocrine glands: the gonads or ovaries, the adrenals, the pancreas, the thymus, the thyroid, the pituitary, and the pineal.
Effects of kundalini syndromes vary with different individuals, and appear to be related to hypo- or hyper-secretion of glandular substances.
With the gonads, there may be intensification of sexual drive or loss of desire and impotence.
Influences on the ovaries may bring irregularities of the menstrual cycle, with similar changes in sexual desire as seen in the male.
Adrenal change ranges from highly energized states where the individual may experience rage and extreme irritability to fatigue states, where there in no energy to function.
Modification of the functioning of the pancreas' endocrine functions may give rise to problems with blood sugar regulation.
Interference with thymus operation may lead to lowered immunity or autoimmune conditions.
Thyroid conditions vary from torpid states, where it is difficult to think or move, to highly anxious and nervous states.
Disruption of pituitary functioning may lead to systemic effects such as sustained high cortisol levels.
Variations in pineal function may disrupt the sleep cycle, leading to insomnia.
(5) The autonomic nervous system innervates the twelve organs: bladder, colon, small intestine, stomach, gall bladder, liver, spleen, heart, lungs, salivary and lachrymal glands, kidneys and reproductive organs.
There are a wide variety of possible symptoms deriving from kundalini syndromes. For example, hyper-secretory or hypo-secretory conditions of the digestive organs that interfere with the ability to properly digest food.
Influences on assimilative functions may make it difficult to absorb nutrients.
Alternations in colon function may lead to constipation or diarrhea.
The heart may experience changes in rhythm.
There may be interference with the ability to breathe if the lungs are affected.
(6) The central nervous system consists of the brain, spinal cord, and the peripheral afferent and efferent nerves that meditate sensation and movement.
Symptoms that arise from kundalini syndromes can affect sensation, movement, perception, mood and thinking.
Disruption of sensation can lead to numbness and tingling, or pain in different parts of the body.
The individual may experience temporary paralysis of limbs (conversion).
Perception of objects in the environment may be altered.
There may be mood swings or highly anxious, panic states.
Changes to cognition include thought stopping or racing of thoughts, and disorganization of thinking.
(7) Etheric energetic coordination and integration ties the functioning of the glands, autonomic nervous system and central nervous system together.
This system of larger energy channels or meridians circulates life force throughout the body; the nadis or fine tubules in the "etheric brain" appear to play a role in mental functioning. When kundalini syndromes interfere with etheric regulation, there may be effects on any of the other three quadrants—indeed, those who practice oriental medicine suggest that any physiological effects of kundalini syndromes primarily result from its influence on this quadrant.
Symptoms that may arise that appear to derive from this quadrant are sensations of heat and cold, especially in the spinal area; swooning, fainting or dizziness; spatial disorientation; difficulties in making coordinated movement or speech, or disruption of learned behavioral sequences