Works of serious Chakra meditators who have describe their personal experiences about the awakening of the kundalini are unique meaning their descriptions of the stirring and rising of their kundalini are individualized with little consistency in what really happened in this unique experience. But invariably the effects and the follow on are quite similar. I will speak about certain common features in the awakening of the kundalini some other time. The reason is that those seriously interested in these spiritual mystical practices first understand the role of the sheaths that surround the atman or the soul.
The true awakening and rise of kundalini from the base chakra to the final one are always individual experiences and different from each other. Amongst those who have reached the ultimate unfoldment rarely is there a single soul who would like to write his experience. Yes, the experiences are passed on to those who need them orally. But to understand the awakening of the kundalini it is necessary to understand the role of the five sheaths or koshas in the human body.
The atman is surrounded by five sheaths each covering the one below like the skins of an onion.
The first is called annamaya kosha which is the physical body that is the skin and behind it the organs, flesh, bones, hair, sinews, bones etc. It is symbolically related to earth and is maintained by proper food and perfected by Hatha Yoga. This is covered by the etheric body and is called the pranamaya kosha and is not visible whose function is to acquire knowledge and direct the functioning of the annamaya kosha or the physical body. Its strength, efficiency and sharpness are gained by pranayama exercises.
Over this is the mental body called manomaya kosha which activates and guides the earlier coverings and its constituents are reasoning, feelings, emotions and direct the sense organs of sight, taste, audio, smell and touch. This is covered by viganamaya kosha which contains within itself elements of intelligence and ego. Knowing this covering man is able to attenuate his thoughts and actions and control over it greatly promotes dharana and dhayana. Over this is the fifth and last covering called anandamya kosha also called the causal body. It controls our inner world our spiritual urges and is the fount of joy and bliss. The important fact is that all the five koshas are controlled by the prana.
Full awakening of kundalini is a process and happens over time and it begins with the aspirant seeing a light which could be in size from a dot to a larger circle, dull to bright to shining to sparkling, in the point between the eyebrows. Some feel a pleasant sensation of heat at the base of the spine and others have other indications which are non ordinary and the aspirant can describe them. By regular practice of pranayama and meditation the aspirant gets some sort of control over the koshas beginning with the etheric orpranamaya kosha. Different koshas exercise control over different chakras.
Each chakra controls specific body parts or organs; is responsible for specific function; manages physical characteristics connected to its subordinate glands, nerve plexus and their ailments; maintains spiritual connections in terms of qualities, awakening, understanding and wisdom; and development and control over its specific psychological characteristics and the yogi begins to work with chakra by chakra (meditation) through communication and subtle control for his spiritual development consciously.
The meaning of this is that the yogi by constant practice of pranayama and meditation guides the pranic or kundalini energy from the basic chakra or the muldhara chakra to the topmost sahasrara chakra by cleansing and illuminating the sushmana and other subsidiary nadis and motivating the kundalini energy to flow unimpeded in these channels or nadis.
The atman is said to have its seat in the spot between the eyebrows or the ajna chakra. By bringing the kundalini energy to the ajna chakra the yogi experiences it and operates from here by managing his life from here instead of the mind or heart and achieves moksha or enlightenment.
The reader should realize that spiritual awakening is a personal and individual determined and the aspirant has to choose it and once chosen and practiced seriously observing yamas and following niyamas a time comes when one is chosen and then onwards powerful and mysterious forces guide you. Till that point it requires hard work, great discipline, true longing and control on the ego.
Chakras:It is believed that there are seven chakras or psychic centers of life and consciousness. Of these the first six lie inside the spinal cord and the last center is inside the brain. Each chakra exercises a subtle influence on organs and nerves related to it. By meditating on a specific chakra its energy is freed and it circulates freely and generating positive effects.
Prana: It is the vital energy in the cosmos that makes the solar system work or the earth to spin on its axis or the lungs to work or the heart to beat. There is only one energy of this kind and is called cosmic energy. We absorb this cosmic energy in the form of prana also called the life force into our body which distributes itself into the entire body through hundreds of fine capillaries called nadis.
Atman: A Sanskrit word which means God within " or the inner essence of living entity and often equated to soul, self or spirit. It is considered to be pure, divine, immortal and perfect. Under the influence of the cosmic ignorance man forgets its true nature and mistakenly identifies it with the mind. This erroneous identification is the cause of miseries of man. The atman is the real self as opposed to the mind and ego. Hindu spiritual works speak of the atman as being the same as the Supreme or the Almighty or God, and being a microscopic part of it. This divinity is beyond the body, senses, mind and intellect.
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