This post was inspired by questions from Sohumm, who has graciously given his permission for me to share our conversation with you.
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Your reply brings a lot of clarity about Pranotthana and Kundalini and it seems that the mulbandha, jajandharabandha and uddiyanbandha are the key players.
They are. A true bandha (lock) occurs only spontaneously, at first and for some time to come, a bandha presents very intensely and dramatically. We are so clearly just the audience and not the performer that any remaining doubts as to our own ability to surrender adequately, are dispelled.
I so hope I’m not pestering you with my questions but I didn’t quite understand your last paragraph — “An awakened kundalini and the ascension of prana-kundalini is noted when events associated with chakras are sequential.”
You know that Kundalini is awake and pulling prana along with Her when your experiences are associated with the characteristics of the chakras in order.
Kundalini has to affect chakras in order because Her route is predetermined by Her passage through the central channel in which the chakras are seated, i.e., She must pierce the second chakra in order to get to the third chakra, and so forth. Meanwhile, prana can stimulate a chakra in any order and completely confuse us. The solution then, is to look at the sequence.
I have received a few indications that my kundalini awakened at Manipura chakra, rather than muladhara chakra, but it has still not moved to Anahata [the fourth chakra at the heart].
Kundalini will always awaken at the first chakra before moving upward. Either you just didn’t notice this because the awakening was gentle, or the awakening was what Swami Kripalu would call “partial”. I would not argue that kundalini does not ‘awaken’ at the third chakra … more fully, as this is a significant chakra also — it’s name, manipura, means Jewel City! However, when kundalini retires from Her job at the end of the day, She goes home to the first chakra.
I’ve written about the reasons why I believe my Kundalini awakened in Manipura in the post – http://sohumm.wordpress.com/2013/11/09/kundalini-experiences-part-4/. and, yes, the Jalandhar bandha and uddiyan bandha happened spontaneously too, along with the outer kumbhaka (predominantly).
The problem is, I left my practice in 2002-2003, when kumbhaka happened for a very long time along with a sinking feeling. After reading swami Sivananda and Satyananda Saraswati, I believe it could have been Kevala Kumbhaka happening…..
This is an excellent post. I hope everyone who is interested in kundalini and yoga will read it.
Kumbhaka occurs in the state of pratyahara. Kevala kumbhaka means “hold only”. In other words, there is nothing moving, there is only suspension — of everything. I described this in our last communication (see Kundalini Letters) but did not use its name.
These things become confusing not because of differences of opinion or experience, but because of the different ways they are spoken of. For instance, what is pratyahara in the Yoga Sutras, is mudra in the Shiva Samhita.
Could you please describe the “sinking feeling”?
…..do these events have any relation to what you meant by – “when events associated with chakras are sequential”? in the last paragraph of your mail?
The sequential nature of kundalini is not always easy to identify. Forward sequential movement rarely indicates that kundalini has finished with previous chakras. If kundalini is at work at the third chakra, She has to have already pierced the first and second chakras in order to reach it, even though they (the first and second chakras) have not yet been completely purified, evolved, and resolved.
The workings of kundalini are not easy to interpret. She is easy to awaken, and very difficult to get up-trended and passing through and evolving each chakra. It is not as simple, or as recognizable, as we would like.