In INSIGHTS by Shakti Das5 Comments

Kundalini and tummo as the primary focus in nondual body-mind integration; a path to the fully activated and integrated emanation body.


A close up from yogis doing tummo. From Dalai Lama’s private temple, now open to the public. Mural photography © Thomas Laird, 2015.

Kundalini is a Sanskrit word that has no exact English equivalent. It refers to when the primal mother energy, shakti, is activated within the human body-mind organism. The assumption is that this potential dynamic is normally dormant; but can be activated and empowered through many ways.


Sukhasiddhi, the female master of tummo.

Kundalini, as the mother evolutionary energy, albeit its potential is innate, arises either spontaneously, through past good karma, some call it grace or merit, through being in the presence of a yogic master, shaktipat initiation, or through a dedicated sadhana practice. The best way to prepare the body-mind is through the fire of yogic practice. Then, when mind-prana and body-prana, lung in Tibetan, are focused and refined, there will be fewer difficulties. This is often called purification, activation or initiation, while eventually leading to an integrated, wholistic state. The people whose kundalini is active may often appear to possess certain talents, abilities, and happiness. They may often be perceived as charismatic. As long as the intent is wise and compassionate, no harm occurs. If such goes to one’s head, egoic pride, as in a sense independent ownership, then there will be downfalls. That is why prepatory practices are recommended to the novice. 

On the other hand, the dark night of the soul, despondency, conflicting emotions, illness, and imbalance are often caused by resistance to the kundalini arising. In other words, there remains a obstruction to its activation. The specific resistance is often undiagnosed, but always can be traced back, in general, to ego grasping upon a world view that is obsolete. Hence, surrender to one’s evolutionary dynamic kundalini is interconnected with the surrender of our egoic stuckness.


Naropa doing tummo practice. Mural photography © Thomas Laird, 2015.

Chakra Kundalini

Most, if not all, reports of bad kundalini experiences are not due to kundalini, but rather due to its repression or blockage. The average man rarely has kundalini experiences, because normally their body-mind dynamics are severely numbed, shut down, drugged, toxic, and inactivated. On the other hand, authentic yoga practitioners, who practice yam, niyam, asana, pranayama, pratyhara, dharana, and dhyana will experience the best gradual integration of kundalini without difficulties.

Similarly, in Buddhist yoga, one receives empowerment from a teacher, which is an energetic transmission, something commonly labelled as a contact high in the old days. The teacher also adds oral instruction and study guides as well as the basic yogic practice of tummo. Depending if it is with or without deity inclusion or exclusion, the practices will most often include physical exercises, the six yogas of Naropa, tsa-lung, trulkhor, nangpei, and yantra yoga, energetic breathing exercises, visualization, mantra and mudra, absorption and integration. These are combined with establishing the fundamental common ground of selfless dedication, devotion, aspiration, compassion, and non-dual wisdom also know as timeless-presence.

I have found a balanced and customized daily yoga sadhana guided by open awareness very helpful, while realizing that all practitioners, except for the fully realized yogis, experience a certain degree of ego-grasping, and hence habitual resistance, until all past karmic residues are burned away. Eventually, the innate intelligent evolutionary energy freely flows through the human organism as the integrator and emanation point of primordial presence on this planet. This is the integration free from subject-object duality.

Authentic sadhana should feel very good or blissful, as a subjective attribute when the dross is lifted from the body-mind and the previously dormant evolutionary energetic circuitry become opened, energized, and inter-connected so that the body-mind is perfectly synchronized.
Sarva mangalam!

About the Author
Shakti Das

Shakti Das


Born in Chicago toward the end of WW2. Seeking practical solutions to egoic dystopias all my life. Boundless Space, Primordial Light, Limitless Love. The Prayer Dance website & blog of Shakti Das.

Mural photography © Thomas Laird, 2015.

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    Thank you for an enlightening write up. I need to dwell on underlying the true meaning. Kind regards.

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    I am fascinated by Kundalini too and use it in my daily practice…carefully! I also wrote a novel that concerns the rising of the serpent fire – Whip of the Wild God, A Novel of Tantra in Ancient India. Great article, Shakti, thank you!!!

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    Tnx.very helpful.

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