Write-up on Sahaja Yoga, Kundalini, and Chakras

>> Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Sahaja Yoga was started by Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi in 1970. "Sahaja" in hindi means simple, and "Yoga" means union. So to achieve one's union or to achieve union of soul with God, and in an easy way... that is Sahaja Yoga. Sahaja also has another meaning. "Sah" means "with", and "ja" means "born". So Sahaja means something that is born with us. And the energy that is born with us is Kundalini.

Kundalini resides in the sacrum bone, the triangular bone, that is situated at the base of our spinal cord. Kundalini is in the form of three and a half coils. Coil in hindi is also called as kundal, thus the name Kundalini. Kundalini is within every human being. We are born with this energy. Kundalini is our primordial mother. It is every human being's individual mother. It knows all about us, our whole past of previous births is recorded within the Kundalini. Kundalini is known by various names in many religions, or traditions. It has been there in all scriptures of all religions/traditions. Indian tradition knows it as "Kundalini", Christian tradition as "Holy Spirit", Islam tradition as "Ruh", Jews as "Sekkinah", Greeks called it "Pneuma". So knowledge of Kundalini is very ancient. All great saints and prophets knew about Kundalini, and in a manner that they thought was best, they tried to tell everyone about it. This is because Kundalini is responsible for our connection to God, for our union with God. Union/connection with God is only possible by Kundalini Awakening, not otherwise.

How Kundalini is born with us?
When a child is about 2-3 months, and is inside the mother's womb, then divine energy from outside enters into child, from the top of the head. Now, brain is of a prismoidal shape, and so these cosmic rays, or the divine energy, gets refracted. The rays falling on the left side, turn to the right side of the body, and form the right channel, or the right sympathetic system. Similarly, the rays falling on right side, turn to left side of the body, and form left channel, or the left sympathetic system. The rays falling straight, enter the centre, and form the central channel, or the para-sympathetic system, central nervous system, and the six energy centres, also called as chakras. At this time, when Kundalini enters the body, that time, the spirit also enters the body, and it resides in the heart. Thats why, after this happens, then we tell that life has come into the baby, which is inside the womb.

The residual of the divine energy, after making the left and right sympathetic systems, para-sympathetic system, and the chakras, settles down in the sacrum bone. This residual energy is the Kundalini. The divine energy enters from the top of the head of the child. Thats why when a child is newly born, the place from where the divine energy enters can be seen as a soft area on the top of the head. This area is soft when the child is born. But with time, calcification occurs, and the area hardens.

When the Kundalini enters the triangular bone, it becomes dormant. Unless otherwise Kundalini is awakened, it then remains dormant in a human being, waiting to be awakened, and give the person his/her union with God.

Kundalini is a part of the subtle system that is within us. Our physical body that is visible, is gross. But there is also a subtle system, that is not visible, but is inside our body. In this subtle system are: left channel, or left-sympathetic system, right channel or right sympathetic system, central channel or the para-sympathetic system, 7 energy centres or chakras, and Kundalini. This whole system is built within us, for getting connected to God. Like wires and bulb form a whole system, for electricity to pass through, to light the bulb; similarly, the subtle system built inside us, is made to have our connection with God, and to enlighten us.

The left channel is also called as Ida Nadi. This channel represents our emotions, desires, feminine aspect, past. Thoughts of our past, our emotions, our desires come from this channel. This channel controls the left hand side of the body and right hemisphere of the brain. On a subtle level, it expresses our pure desire to seek truth. Pure desire to know ourselves, to have union with God comes from this channel.
Those who often think of the past make excessive use of this channel. Such people are very emotional, often feel guilty, and are dominated by others. Excessive use of this channel can make a person depressive, very emotional and lethargic.

The right channel is called as Pingala Nadi. This channel represents our actions, masculine aspect, and future. Physical capacity for action to complete our desires, mental capacity for analysis and planning, come from this channel. This channel controls the right hand side of the body and left hemisphere of the brain. Those people who plan too much, think of the future too much, or work too much, make excessive use of this channel, thereby using its energy, and due to this, they can become dominating, aggressive, and can develop problems of right hand side like diabetes, spleen trouble, and so on.

The central channel is known as Shushumna Nadi. This channel is responsible for our spiritual evolution. This channel represents "present" means neither past nor future... and represents balance.. physical, emotional, and mental.

Most of the time, a person is either thinking about past, or future. Thoughts of past or future, often surround his/her mind. The thought cycle goes on. Thus a person never stays in the present. When a person stays in the present moment i.e. he/she neither thinks of past, nor of future, then he/she comes in the middle or the centre. Then, spiritual evolution takes place.

When Shri Buddha talked of following the middle path, He meant to come to the central channel, where there are no thoughts, neither of past, nor of future. When Shri Mohammad talked of being on the straight path, and not straying from it, He meant Shushumna Nadi, the central channel only, where there are no thoughts, but spiritual evolution, and union with God/Allah.

The chakras are energy centres inside our body. They govern the subtle, psychosomatic aspects of our inner being. On a subtle level, these chakras are responsible for the functioning of our various organs, and the body.
In scientific term, these chakras are called as plexuses, which are gross representation of the chakras.

There are 7 chakras in our body. Each chakra looks after different parts of the body. There are deities sitting on each chakra, and are responsible for bestowing certain qualities on us, which make our overall personality.
A brief description of chakras, their names, deities, qualities are given below:

1] Mooladhara Chakra: Mooladhara Chakra is at the end of the spine, below the sacrum bone. "Moola" means root, and "Adhara" means support. So, Mooladhar Chakra is the base, and acts as support and protector for Kundalini, and the whole subtle system. Shri Ganesh is the deity residing on this chakra. Kundalini represents Shri Gauri Ma, mother of Shri Ganesh. And so Ganesh Ji is there for her protection on this chakra, below the Kundalini. If anyone tries to awaken Kundalini in an unauthorised way, Shri Ganesh gets angry, and this can be felt sometimes as immense heat passing through the body of the person.
Shri Ganesh is deity of innocence, purity and wisdom. A person whose mooladhar chakra is pure, will be innocent as a child, yet he/she will be full of wisdom. He/she will be full of purity. In children, these qualities are very much present, coz mooladhar chakra is strong in them.
Mooladhar Chakra controls excretory organs, reproductory organs. It controls the pelvic plexus. Mooladhar Chakra is below Kundalini. This also means that sex has no part in achieving connection with God. Those who try to achieve God with the help of sex, face the wrath of Shri Ganesh Ji.
Having impure thoughts about sex, engaging in immoral sexual behaviour, being involved in tantric activities... such activities act against this chakra, and the qualities of this chakra, are not bestowed upon the person.

2] Swadisthan Chakra: This is the second chakra after Mooladhar, and is situated above Kundalini, on the spinal cord behind the waist area. This Chakra controls the aortic plexus. It looks after liver, spleen, kidneys. Swadisthan Chakras symbolises the creative sense within us. It is responsible for creative abilities, aesthetic sense and artistic abilities within us. Pure desire and pure divine knowledge comes from Swadishthan Chakra. The deities residing on this Chakra are Shri Brahmadev and Shri Saraswati.
When a person thinks too much, or is involved in black magic, or with false gurus and false knowledge, alcohol or drugs, then this chakra gets impure.

3] Nabhi Chakra: This is the third chakra. On physical or gross level, it controls stomach, intestines, upper part of liver, and the solar plexus. This is the center for satisfaction, contentment, generosity, right conduct(dharma), and evolution. The deities of this Chakra are Shri Vishnu and Shri Lakshmi. They bestow upon us welfare: on physical, financial, mental and spiritual level.
Fasting, alcohol, dominating husband/wife, household problems, fanaticism, eating bad food... badly affect this chakra, and make it impure.

The Void: Surrounding the Nabhi Chakra is the Void. It represents the principle of mastery(guru principle) within us. It has been called as the "ocean of illusions", or "bhavsagar". This void has to be crossed, with the help of a spiritual guide, a "satguru". It is the center of our own mastery. Principle of Dharma is also an aspect of this area. When Kundalini awakens, rises and crosses the void, it englightens this area, and makes us our own Guru, our own master. It establishes a sense of righteousnes, or Dharma within us.
The great prophets, who came on this earth to act as role models for all of us, to give knowledge of higher reality, are associated with the void. The primordial deity is Shri Adi Guru Dattatreya. The great prophets, like Raja Janak, Abraham, Moses, Mohammad Sahib, Lao Tse, Socrates, Zaratrustra, Confusius, Sai Nath of Shirdi and Guru Nanak are embodiments of the primordial master. They came on this earth to show us the right way, right conduct, the righteous way of living. They enlighten our Void, and make us our own master.

4] Anahat Chakra: Anahat, or the heart chakra, is the fourth chakra, and is situated behind the sternum. This chakra is the centre for security, love, self-confidence. It gives a sense of security to a person. It controls the heart plexus.
Shri Jagdamba is the deity on central heart. The left heart is the home of the spirit, or the "atma". Dieties on left heart are Shri Shiv, and Shri Parvati. Left heart is also associated with our physical mother. Left heart is the centre of our existence, life, joy and love.
The deity on right heart are Shri Ram, and Shri Sita. The qualities of right heart are responsibility, right conduct in life, with society, and family. Right heart is also concerned with our physical father.
Fear, insecurity, bad relations with mother or father, agression, domination, anti-God activities... cause heart chakra to catch, and the qualities of this chakra are not bestowed upon the person.

5] Vishuddhi Chakra: This chakra is situated on the spinal cord, on the joint where the neck and shoulders meet. It controls the cervical plexus. This chakra controls eyes, ears, throat, nose, neck, mouth, tongue, arms. In whole, it controls the five senses. Its in charge of the aspect of communication.
This chakra is the center for communication, divine diplomacy, collective consciousness, witness, detachment.
The deities governing this chakra are Shri Krishna, and Shri Radha.
Using foul language, sarcastic language, feeling guilty, chewing tobacco, bad brother-sister relationship, lack of self-respect... all these obstruct this chakra, and cause this chakra to catch.

6] Agnya Chakra: This chakra is situated in the centre of the brain area. Its position can be identified as the middle of the forehead. It controls the optic chiasm. The channels of the subtle system cross at the agnya chakra, the left channel goes towards the right, and the right channel towards the left. The end points of the two channels form ego and supergo. The ego and superego form balloons, constricting the agnya chakra, and obstructing the path of the Kundalini. To reach Sahastrar, the Kundalini has to pass agnya chakra.
This is the centre for forgiveness, compassion, humility. This chakra controls eyes, and thoughts.
The deities of this chakra are Shri Jesus and Shri Mary at the centre agnya, Shri Mahavira at left agnya, and Shri Buddha on the right agnya.
Shri Mahavira, and Shri Buddha both preached the message of compassion for all, and non-violence to self and others. Shri Jesus taught the human beings, the power of forgiveness. He also proclaimed the immorality of spirit through His resurrection, and also taught that we have to be born again, when Kundalini will give us our second birht.
They taught the world to rise above the ego and superego, and the conditionings of the human mind, and to have compassion and forgiveness.
Aggression, egoism, inability to forgive oneself or others, wandering eyes, wrong ideas about God, worries.. obstruct this chakra... and do not allow the Kundalini to cross the agnya chakra, and reach Sahastrar. Thus, to allow for Kundalini to pass, a seeker has to forgive himself, and everyone.

7] Sahastrar Chakra: Situated in the limbic area, this final chakra represents the integration of all the chakras. The whole instrument is integrated in the Sahastrar. It is the destination, filled with bliss of the spirit, and silence. When the Kundalini rises above agnya chakra, and crosses sahastrar, the seeker becomes thoughtless. He/she attains nirvichar samadhi, he/she reaches the stage of thoughtless awareness.
The deity of this chakra is Shri Kalki.

So, this is the subtle system. Kabir has mentioned about this subtle system in his poetries.
Shri Mohammad Sahib has told about these seven chakras as seven heavens.

Only the Kundalini has the power to awaken the subtle system. When Kundalini awakens, it rises from the sacrum bone, piercing the chakras above it, nourishing them, and finally, reaches the Sahastrar chakra, and after piercing the fontanelle bone area, comes out from the top of the head, and mixes with the all-pervading divine power that is everywhere. This mixing of Kundalini, the divine energy within us, with the all-prevading energy that is outside, is the Union, or Yoga. This is the union of spirit(which is reflection of God within us), and God, the Almighty. This is "self-realisation". This is when we realise, that we are pure spirit, and nothing else.

When Kundalini crosses the Sahastrar Chakra, and mixes with the all-pervading power, then divine evergy enters the body through the fontanelle bone. This energy can be felt as cool breeze, on the fingers, and palms of our hands. We can also feel cool breeze coming out from the top of our head. This is the experience, this is the proof, that we have achieved self-realisation, that we have achieved the union, or yoga. This is proof that we are now connected to the power that created us.

This divine breeze that the seeker feels on his/her hands, is the power of God. It is all around us. This is the energy that does the whole work in the world. This is the energy that does everything. This is the divine breeze that has been mentioned in many scriptures. This has been called as the wind of the Holy Ghost in the Bible; as "Ruach", the Hebrew word for spirit. Adi Sankaracharya has called this as "chaitanya lahari". And he has described this feeling of cool breeze as "salilam salilam" meaning "cool cool". With the awakening of Kundalini, we can feel the all-pervading power on our hands.

Also, when Kundalini reaches the Sahastrar Chakra, the seeker becomes thoughtless. He/she experiences thoughtless awareness, or "Nirvichar" state. This is the state of meditation. This happens as Kundalini rises above Agnya Chakra, from where thoughts arise, due to our conditionings/ego/superego. When Kundalini crosses agnya chakra, thoughts cease spontaneously, without any effort.

Now, when the Kundalini awakens, it also awakens the subtle system within us. Every aspect of the subtle system can now be felt, on our central nervous system and on our hands. We can feel the state of our energy channels, and the chakras. Our nerves have their end-points on our fingers. So each finger corresponds to a chakra. Every energy centre, or chakra, can be felt on the hand, and their state can be decoded. As can be seen from the picture, diff parts of our hand, correspond to different chakras.
The thumbs indicate the Swadishthan Chakra, the forefingers Vishuddhi Chakra, the middle finger Nabhi Chakra, the ring finger Agnya Chakra, and the little fingers Anahat, or Heart Chakra. The joint of the wrist and the arm is the Mooladhar Chakra. The centre of the palms is the Sahastrar Chakra, and its surrounding area of the palm is the Void, or the "bhavsagar".

When a chakra is obstructed, or impure... this can be felt as heat, pricking sensation, tingling, heaviness, or numbness on that particular finger corresponding to a particular chakra. Then we can clean that chakra, by mantras, or by taking certain purification treatment techniques. When cool breeze is felt equally on the fingers and the palms of both hands, without any feeling of obstruction, then it indicates that our inner being is balanced and in good condition. Thus, we can decode the state of our subtle system ourselves, and rectify any problems.

Also, when Kundalini is awakened, and it crosses Sahastrar Chakra, then we enter one more dimension. We enter into collective consciousness. This means, that we not only can feel the state of our subtle system, but now we can also feel the state of subtle system of other human beings. Thus, we can decode their state too.
And this is what prophet, Shri Mohammad Sahib, meant when He said that, "at the time of Qiyamah, your hands will speak. Your hands will witness against you".
This is what he meant. That you will feel vibrations, or the cool breeze, on your hands. That your hands will tell about your own state, and also the state of others.

So, the present time is the age of Qiyamah, or the "resurrection time", called as "last judgement" in Bible.

Now, a question arises in mind, that how is it possible that earlier Kundalini Awakening was so tough... it took a lot of time. Then how, today, and in Sahaja Yoga, Kundalini is awakened so easily?
There are many other forms of yoga, which require all sorts of practices to awaken Kundalini in a human being. These practices are tough, take too much time, and also require too much from an individual, physically, and mentally. In other yogas, the final goal is Kundalini Awakening. Whereas Sahaja Yoga starts with Kundalini Awakening itself. In Sahaja Yoga, Kundalini is awakened very easily, within a few minutes. This is achieved in front of Shri Mataji, or in front of Shri Mataji's photo. So one thing to be understood is that, Shri Mataji is someone divine, because Kundalini, that is so hard to awaken, is awakened so easily, in front of Her.
Then, why in today's time? This is because this is required most in today's time. Today's world is very much in need of peace and love. Everywhere we see hatred, fights, wars, terrorism, crimes.. going on in the world today. These are the darkest times the world has ever seen. This era has been called as "Kaliyug" in indian tradition. Love and peace are very much required today, amongst human beings. Thus, to change the whole world, to make this world a better place, Kundalini Awakening is required. This is how human beings will change. This is how they will become what they should be.
The darkest hour is just before dawn. A new age is about to come... all the hatred, wars, crimes.. all will be replaced by peace and love. All that is bad as to end, and the good has to win.

Human beings have to change. And this will happen with Kundalini Awakening only. This is because, when Kundalini awakens, our subtle system is awakened. Kundalini starts nourishing our chakras. Every chakra has got some qualities. These qualities start manifesting spontaneously, and express themselves in our character, in our whole personality. We achieve innocence, become creative, our state improves, in every field of life. We automatically become very dynamic, creative, confident, and at the same time, very humble, loving, compassionate, full of love.

The chakras look after our various body parts. And diseases occur when these chakras become impure. With regular meditation, these chakras get nourished, and so automatically, our diseases get cured, our body becomes healthy. Incurable diseases can be cured, and have been cured, like this. So, physically we become healthy.
Also, now we can know our state ourselves, we can know by decoding our chakras, by knowing the state of our channels, and chakras, where our problem lies. We can thus cure ourselves.
Also, we can also know the state of other human beings. Thus, we can cure them too.

By Kundalini Awakening, we get connected to God. We evolve spiritually. With regular meditation, we learn to stay in thoughtless awareness. We thus achieve, first of all inner peace. We have less problems in our lives. Coz, now every problem is looked after by God Himself. We learn to recognise ourselves as Spirit, or Atma, and nothing else. We learn to live in this world, enjoying everything, doing everything, our work, getting married, having family... all this being connected to God, and knowing that we are Spirit. We learn to witness, not relating ourselves, to matter, money, emotions, relations. We learn how to be detached, yet being attached. We identify less and less with our body, and more with our spirit. We develop love and compassion for everyone. We become humble, noble, kind, innocent... all good qualities start developing in ourselves. We can see for ourselves where we are lacking. By regular meditation, and introspection, we start seeing our mistakes, our defects, our shortcomings, because that enlightentment comes within us, with Kundalini Awakening. We start looking at ourselves, our shortcomings more, rather than looking at the shortcoming of others. And we remove those defects within us, to make ourselves perfect, and also make our relationship perfect with other human beings.

Being connected to God is like being connected to a powerhouse. He is the source of everything. When we become connected to Him... our whole life changes... physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually.

And all this is achieved with Kundalini Awakening. Thats why, all prophets, all saints, all incarnations... those who came on this earth, to show us the way, have talked about this, in all religions, in some way or the other. In their own way, according to the time they were in, according to the requirement of their time, they tried to tell us about this only. They tried to tell us that God is one, and He can be achieved by Kundalini Awakening only. They tried to tell, we all are different, yet we all are one. We all are the children of one God.
Every form of meditating technique, every form of prayer, aims at Kundalini Awakening only. The ultimate goal was Kundalini Awakening, and connection with God Almighty, who is creator of everything.

In Shri Mataji's own words: "You cannot the meaning of yourself, unless you are connected to the power that created you".

Coutesy : Anupam Shivratri
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