March 21, 2009
When did you start practicing Kundalini Yoga and why?
I started doing Kundalini Yoga almost 30 years ago when I was introduced to it by a friend in Washington DC USA. I was intuitively drawn to it at an early age, and time has proved beyond all doubt that it was the right choice for me.
How is Kundalini Yoga different from other types of Yoga?
Hatha Yoga derives from a Sanyasi, who renunciates, following monastic tradition. Kundalini Yoga is a householder yoga. Hatha seeks to subjugate the lower energy centres and concentrates on opening the higher centres in the safety of a walled/monastic environment. Kundalini Yoga is inclusive in the sense that it seeks to strengthen both the lower triangle of energy centres and the electro-magnetic field, making it safe to open the higher centres whilst living in the midst of a modern urban environment, running a household, raising kids, pursuing a successful career etc.
The ultimate goal is one and the same in all traditions: To wake up and remember who YOU are, to realize your True Identity (SAT NAM) as infinite blissful awareness, liberating yourself from all false identification of body, mind and ego. Kundalini Yoga being an Aquarian yoga teaches that there is no longer any need to retreat to a mountain top cave to achieve this. Self-realization can be achieved in the midst of everyday modern life as long as you have access to the tools and technologies of Kundalini Yoga.
What is Kundalini?
Kundalini is the energy of Awareness, Intelligent Life Force. In the Hindu mythological reality grid, Kundalini Shakti is the supreme consciousness made manifest in the physical Universe, whilst Shiva represents the transcendent aspect of consciousness. She resides in the root chakra of all humanity as a coiled serpent in a dormant state, waiting to be awakened and consciousness raised to experience our true identity as an Infinite Being. Remember that myth is a symbolic story, an attempt to describe a state of being that is quite simply beyond words, beyond the range of the intellect to understand. In Kundalini Yoga we call this state WAHE GURU, ecstasy beyond words, indescribable wisdom. It can only be grasped through intuitive experience.
People say Kundalini Yoga is the spiritual next step for Yogis.
I don’t like to compare things and say one is better or worse than the other. I also studied Satyanada Yoga (a real Hatha monastic Yoga) for a while, and I can tell you that Kundalini Yoga is very different. Classical Hatha Yoga, based on the Pantanjali blueprint, has eight limbs which lead to the ultimate goal of Self-realization. But unfortunately in the “gym yogas” on offer today, only two of these get taught ie Asana and Pranayama (posture and breath). Kundalini integrates all eight limbs in every session. It is a complete Yoga. Hatha Yoga is a good starting point to condition body and breath. Often people do it for a while, then are drawn to Kundalini Yoga when they want to go deeper and experience their own Infinity. When I did my training for certification in Kundalini Yoga, 80 per cent of the 50 people on the course were long time Hatha teachers who had reached that point of wanting to take the next step to a deeper experience.
How would you describe Kundalini Yoga?
Kundalini Yoga is a complete technology designed for the human in the Aquarian age to realize their true potential and live healthy happy and holy, fearless and free.
Is Kundalini Yoga safe? Some people have stated that the Kundalini has risen too fast.
Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan is entirely safe. The kriyas (exercises) and meditations systematically strengthen the nervous system and balance the glandular secretions while gently awakening the Kundalini. In this way the vehicle is prepared to safely contain the increase in pranic force and raised awareness. It is like rewiring to accept the increased voltage.
The stories you hear of spontaneous Kundalini awakenings are always associated with drug use, or triggered by trauma etc or by shamanic style practices like fasting, sleep deprivation etc where the Kundalini wakes up without any prior strengthening and preparation of the vehicle and is difficult to contain.
Can you tell us more about the philosophy?
It comes out of the Sikh Tradition. There is a lineage or golden chain of Kundalini gurus beginning with the visionary mystic guru Nanak who emerged from the river with the Mul Mantra song of enlightenment and handed the teachings down to the next guru and so on down the chain. After the 10th guru it was declared that the body of teachings itself is the guru, with no further need for a human incarnation. These teachings date back many 100s of years and are perfect and complete. There is no need to be a Sikh to practice. The yoga stands alone as a complete technology for Self-realization, regardless of religious beliefs if any.
How has Kundalini Yoga changed your life and outlook?
My experience with all this is that a regular daily practice gradually cleans the garbage out of the subconscious, removing all blocks to recognition of True Identity as Infinite Being, allowing for increasing clarity, inner peace and joy, coupled with greatly increased strength, stamina and vitality. Kundalini Yoga grants mastery and control of the mind/body mechanism, while being deeply surrendered to the intuitive guidance of the inner guru, and life becomes an easy effortless flow of synchronistic events that lead to increased prosperity and abundance on all levels. Not bad I say. Not bad at all. In short, I love Kundalini Yoga. It is the greatest blessing. One of the great benefits for me is that it grants the awareness that cuts through all illusion, deception and general bullshit. It grants the vision to see right through people and situations and exposes all the ego games that people play and the false identities they assume in compensation for their lack of knowledge of their True Identity. This perception saves a hell of a lot of time and energy.
What are the benefits?
It’s 16 times faster than the other Yogas. Quick results on all levels, physical health, strength, fitness and flexibility. Inner strength from a strong core (navel energy), strong nervous system, balanced endocrine system, and healthy internal organs. Greater vitality, stamina and flexibility. Better breathing. Release of stress and subconscious blocks. Deep relaxation, healing, self-awareness and connection to Source. Openness to the flow of intuitive guidance. Opens the heart to love and promotes deep sense of conscious connectivity and trust.
Above all, Kundalini Yoga, the science of human radiance, is a lot of fun. In each session you will sweat, stretch, laugh, chant and relax more deeply than ever before, and you will leave feeling healthy, happy and holy for real.
What are the 5 key Kundalini rules?
The 5 Aquarian Sutras are:
1. Recognize that the other person is you.
2. There is a way through every block
3. When the time is on you, start, and the pressure will be off.
4. Understand through compassion, or you will misunderstand the times.
5. Vibrate the Cosmos, the Cosmos shall clear the path.
Do you have any Kundalini tips for the average person?
Commit! Concentrate on the Nhabi kriyas in the beginning, which wake up the 3rd chakra core energy and give you a ‘navel point’. This will give you the will vitality grit and supreme good health to be able to commit to the practice and ‘keep up’.
How often can/should one do Kundalini Yoga?
Well we recommend every single day for your whole life, and preferably between the hours of 4am – 6:30am in the morning. But students who attend my twice weekly group sessions notice a distinct improvement in their life, and quickly too, from just twice a week. A Kundalini set will generally extend your energy for 3 days, then it must be repeated.
How many hours do you have to practice until you notice a change and improvement in your life?
Kundalini Yoga is the fast track. With a regular daily practice of as little as half an hour a day, results can be felt very fast. The practice may be built up to two and a half hours a day. That means that one year of practice will take you into a space that would take 16 years of regular Yoga to achieve. Many students feel it after the very first session. That was certainly the case with me. I knew it was right for me from the very first session.