Monday, November 18, 2013

When Kundalini Rises, There is Nowhere to Hide

Thinking about writing this post I posed myself a challenge: I could write an interesting, but theoretical post or I could write a post that, instead of making me look knowledgeable, would reveal how one is constantly tested after Kundalini rises. Stepping out of my comfort zone, I am going to do the latter. In another post, I wrote that awakening Kundalini marks the beginning of authentic spirituality. What do I mean by that? Up to the time Kundalini awakens, one lives in a kind of self-indulgent state that might be summarized as the refusal to be honest with oneself, a very human characteristic. When Kundalini rises all that stops and the fire of purification starts.

the fire of purification
That fire takes many forms. For me it came in the shape of a seminar I did. I participated in The Money Seminar. One of the weeks (the seminar lasted 10 weeks) was about being authentic and owning up to what we had been less than honest about when it came to money. Smug and complacent in my chair, I sat thinking, "I haven't stolen from anyone and so this conversation doesn't apply to me" when suddenly, from out of nowhere I had a memory of myself as a student working part-time in the corner shop. With a sickening thud in my stomach I remembered when my friends used to come into the shop. In those days the till was the type that you keyed the price of things into, so when any of my friends came in, I used to give 5p/10p off whatever they bought. In college I had a lot of friends! After three months the owner let me go without giving a reason.

Sitting in the seminar filled with shame and desperately uncomfortable in my chair I was gripped by this overwhelming urgency to go back to this shop and make amends. At this point, I was living in a different country and had no idea that the shop would still be there as this had occurred 20 years before! But no matter what my rational mind tried to convince me of, i.e., that it was a fool's mission to go back there, a deeper part of me wasn't listening. I booked a holiday home, factoring in a bus journey that would take me back to the city where the shop was.

I told my mother my plans and she was extremely concerned and responded in the same rationalizing manner my mind had: that this was a crazy thing to do. She did her utmost to talk me out of going. I listened to her concerns patiently and knew at a deep level that my mother wouldn't be the only one that would think this crazy, but there would be few people who understood what was motivating me. I knew what was driving it: Kundalini with its demand for total honesty, integrity and responsibility. 

shame and desperately uncomfortable
The day to go back to the shop arrived. I had 300€ in my purse which is what I reckoned I owed the owner. I boarded the bus, my mind in turmoil but my resolve strong. When we got to the city, I walked through the familiar streets I recognized from my student days. I counted every corner as I turned and with each step my heart started to beat faster and faster. As I came to the last corner before I could see the shop, I willed that by some miracle it would not be there and I would be spared this ordeal. But that was not to be. When I came around the last corner, there was the exact same shop in all its glory, it didn't even seem to have been re-decorated in all that time. Walking slowly towards it, I took a deep breath and opened the door.

The Shop Around the Corner
The layout was exactly as I remembered it and the man who had given me the job was behind the counter.  There were other people in the shop. I walked up to him and said, "Do you remember me?"

He looked at me keenly and said, "Your face seems familiar."

I said, "You employed me years ago when I was a student and I stole from you."

I could see his eyes narrow and I quickly went on, "Not in the way that I put my hands in the till, but when my student friends came into buy things, I gave them a few pence off everything and I reckon that I owe you 300 Euros so here it is." And I handed over the 300€ that I had clung onto while walking to the shop.

He took it quickly and put it into his breast pocket looked at me and said, "Why, after all these years? Why did you come back?"

I said, "It was important for me to come back and take responsibility and make amends for what I did and this is what I'm doing."

He just looked stunned and said, "Thank you."

I said, "You are welcome." And I turned away and walked out of the shop.

Walking away I expected to feel high and happy, but I didn't. Exhilarated but I wasn't. I felt completely drained, exhausted and incredibly tired. My mind started a rant that could have been my mother's voice about what a stupid thing it was to have done when you don't even feel good after doing it.

I felt so low. I spent the whole bus journey berating myself and analyzing what my expectations were about feeling so flat now. When I got home, my mother was waiting for me and welcomed me with a barrage of questions intermixed with chiding about giving that money to a stranger when there was so much she could have done with 300€.

Totally and utterly spent, I looked at her wearily without the energy to defend myself and said, "I'm going to bed." It was 4:00 pm in the afternoon! 

I just couldn't take anymore; I wanted the welcome oblivion of sleep. When I woke up, I felt so different and I knew that I had made this journey so I could look at myself in the mirror. I ventured out from my bedroom into the kitchen to see my mum with a big smile on her face saying that while she didn't understand why I had done what I did she was proud of me for having done it.

Before Kundalini rose, my view of my actions would have been "I was only helping my poor student friends; it wasn't really stealing, I didn't gain anything financially by it," but with Kundalini the same actions are viewed very differently and the stark, no-hiding truth emerges, that whatever my reasons, it was stealing and had to be accounted for. 

I write this because there is a perception that the rising Kundalini is going to result in a blissful, happy life, some kind of utopia and while there is much about this energy that does induce those states, there is also the purification aspect which is real, inexorable, and on-going. The move of consciousness from the human to the spiritual, which is what the rising of Kundalini accomplishes, is a move to being authentic, living with integrity and taking responsibility for everything that happens. And this requires courage and humility because nothing can be hidden.


  1. You are truly remarkable. This is one of the most authentic, amazing documents I have ever read anywhere, not only on the net. Anywhere! What a remarkable post Thank you.

    I know how difficult it must have been to write. Cathartic, yes, but very few can expose themselves to such vulnerability. I know that each and everyone of us has something like this we are ashamed of, something we hide. When it happens early in life, when we are young, we have a million excuses to rationalize it. Later on, we become inured and cynical, easily justifying our wrong actions.

    Kundalini summons these contents up from the depths and asks us to deal with them.

    1. Thanks very much for that positive feedback JJ. It was difficult, I felt huge resistance to doing it but something drove it and it really wrote itself! You're not wrong when you say 'the depths' in my case 20 years of depth. You say about few being able to expose themselves to being vulnerable however the irony is in my experience anyway which is all I ever speak or write about it is only when we are willing to be vulnerable and to lose face and not look good that something different happens - the ego losing face is the access to Self or Soul emerging

  2. Well done all round -- the action and the writing! I still have a question about what you mean by "...nothing can be hidden" at the end. Hidden from one's self? Or from whom or what?

    1. Hello Peggy and thank you very much for taking the time to leave a comment. I love it when there is a question in the comment because it gives me a focus. When I wrote 'nothing can be hidden' I meant hidden from ourselves not at the level of ego but at the level of Self. I have often thought of the ego as like a certain brain pattern that is designed for survival so anything that threatens that survival is resisted and not allowed into consciousness. Kundalini rising either disrupts or transforms that pattern so that things that were hidden at the level of ego are now seen at the level of Self. I have written that the ego is 'me and mine' and the Self is 'I and Ours' and the realizing of this distinction through direct experience is spiritual awakening. I hope this is clear but if not do write again and I will have another go to explain to the best of my ability

      All the very best


  3. How true this is, and what an excellent example of the drive to be morally clean! Let me say, I know the feeling well. This is how the kundalini energy produces a moral compulsion, for which we really can take no credit, for we are driven to it.

    1. Hello Lecubiste, welcome as a contributor to this great blog. It is so true what you say about the moral compulsion and taking no credit - come to think of it the ego wouldn't want to take any credit!...its lost face big time and that's a threat to its survival so true loss of face results in a subdued ego...not defeated totally because as long as we are human there will be ego but seriously injured! Also your point about being driven I so identify with it's like there's no person doing it just the action - the shift from noun to verb - no doer, just doing - no driver, just driven...... Thanks for your comment

  4. Great point about not being able to take credit for it, and being driven to it...

    1. Yes JJ it's as I said in my reply to Lecubiste - the shift from noun to verb....when there is no noun who is there to take the credit for it....

  5. My feeling about this comment is that it is spam but its complimentary spam so I am going to give it the benefit of the doubt and acknowledge it. If it isn't spam then please accept my apologies. hmm...something about 'hats off to you' has the ring of inauthenticity.....but I maybe wrong...time will tell..