What is Kundalini Yoga?
When I read “The Eight Human Talents” in 2001 by renowned Kundalini Yoga teacher, Gurmukh, I had to learn more. So on a visit to Los Angeles, I stopped into a class that Gurmukh was teaching. From that moment on, I knew I had found the yoga for me.
Kundalini yoga is known as the “Yoga of Awareness.” It was introduced to the West by the Indian master Yogi Bhajan when he arrived from India in 1969. Yogi believes that everyone has the right to be “Healthy, Happy, and Holy.”
Kundalini’s purpose is to expand your awareness and tap into the vitality that already exists inside you. It does this by awakening the energy that resides at the base of your spine (kundalini) by means of postures, intensive breath practices, chanting, and meditation The latent energy ascends through the chakras (energy centers along the spine) to the crown, enabling you to connect to the Infinite and realize Samadhi (enlightenment).
How is it different to other forms of yoga?
Like other yogas, it links movement with breath. The way it differs is its direct focus on moving energy through the chakra system, stimulating the energy in the lower chakras and moving it to the higher chakras.
The chakras are energy centers, seven in total, located beginning at the base of the spine and ending at the top of the head. An eighth chakra exists in Kundalini Yoga, which is the electromagnetic field, sometimes called “aura.” The aura is thought to be strengthened through the practice of Kundalini Yoga.
As Shakti Parwha Kaur Khalsa describes in her book, Kundalini Yoga: The Flow of Eternal Power:
“We practice Kundalini Yoga in order to balance and coordinate the functions of the lower chakras and to experience the realms of the higher chakras. After the kundalini energy rises and becomes accustomed to flowing freely through all the chakras, there is a definite change of consciousness, a noticeable transformation in the character of an individual. The person looks at life differently, feels different and therefore acts differently. The real “proof” that someone’s kundalini has risen lies in the upgrading of that person’s attitude toward life, his relationships with other people and with himself.”
How has the practice of Kundalini Yoga benefited me?
My own practice of Kundalini Yoga has awakened talents and energy that have long been dormant. I have rid myself of habits that were acting as barriers to my fulfillment and to go on to create new habits and choices that are allowing me to experience my own infinite potential.
For example, I had a habit of napping after work for an hour or even longer because I would be so exhausted at the end of a work day. The gift of Kundalini Yoga for me has been the gift of sustained energy throughout my day. It has also improved my spiritual life due to the meditative aspect of the practice.
I continue to be amazed by the on-going benefits of my practice of Kundalini Yoga. With Kundalini Yoga, you have a method of achieving your goals.
Karla Becker teaches a community Kundalini class on Wednesdays from 5:30 – 6:45 pm.