Tuesday, April 24, 2007
This morning I once again had a rapturous meditation, simply by standing in front of my thangka and bowing a few times, or moving my arms and hands in micromovements. At the end, I bowed and prayed for various folk who need some sustenance in their lives. At the very moment I finished, I got a call from my friend Jeannine, who is gifted with knowing just when to ring me up (other friends do the opposite--invariably they call at some awkward or inconvenient moment.)
Jeannine and I have both been going through kundalini transformation for many, many years. My process has now continued for over twenty-five years, and hers for more than fifteen (or maybe even more.) We are both in out seventies. We have long served as each other's major support "group" in this experience, for there are almost no others we can confide in as freely as we can with one another.
Although our experiences are not identical, we agree on a few basic conclusions: It is a mystery why kundalini happens, why it sometimes leaves us "in the void" (during "dry periods"), why it begins again for no obvious reason. When it manifests, it is as though a switch has been turned on and energy runs instantaneously, as ecstatic bliss.
We feel that those who have not undergone this experience often mistake the reality for metaphor. Thus, people speak of a room or a person as having "good vibes" but they are intuiting rather than actually picking up the vibrations as a biological process within the body. They mistake "ecstasy" for merely a shift in consciousness, and are unaware of the component of rapture. If we had not gone through the process ourselves, we would not understand it either. Now we know that, for example, Bernini's great sculpture of St. Teresa in ecstasy (in a church in Rome) depicts a literal process of intensely felt bodily bliss. We also know that this bliss is difficult to sustain for extended periods of time.
For me, the shift into higher consciousness is like entering a field of extremely high and loving vibrations, which resonate throughout the body or perhaps especially in some special part of the body. This is unconditional love. Jeannine describes this phenomenon as the link between spirit and matter, human and divine. We both look on the experience as extremely sacred.
We both feel extremely blessed that such beauty has entered our lives, which are now certainly not dull. But we both feel much like aliens in the mass culture, which has no sense of what we undergo and could not understand it if we tried to explain it. We are indeed "closeted mystics" for the most part, able to communicate only with those of our own kind.
We also see the increasing spread of "higher consciousness" in the world and feel that we are part of a larger process whose intention we do not yet perceive. Yet we are glad to serve and do our part to further "whatever it is" that is driving this fascinating process.
For Jeannine, kundalini is like having a sixth sense. For me, it is like having an extremely transformed nervous system. We both feel that ecstasy is in some ways similar to erotic arousal, yet it is different--for example, sometimes the bliss flows only in the hands or over the face. The rest of the body is not involved. And, as I have frequently said, kundalini does not (for us) originate from sexual arousal nor does it proceed to a sexual release. It is a "self-validating experience," always different, always affirming the connection with what some people call god, some the goddess, and others simply "the divine."
We both wish we had someone to explain all of this to us, but no one has yet come forth. No major scientific studies have yet explained the origins or biological/chemical components of kundalini. It is for the most part still unexplored territory, a mystery above all to those who experience it.
Both Jeannine and I have suffered significant pain as part of our transformation process. But we are grateful to be included in "whatever this is," and happy to discover that the process does not end with advancing years, but continues, apparently forever. I like to think that what we experience is a foretaste of existence in the afterworld, where, free of the body, spirit will float in infinite space enjoying boundless bliss as it goes about its task of helping those who remain on the earth plane.