Kundalini Awakening in Meditation

Kundalini Awakening Symptoms

Symptoms of Kundalini Awakening 

Real Life Experiences & Descriptions of Kundalini Rising

Are you going through a kundalini awakening episode or experience?  Let’s find out… 

Kundalini awakening symptoms are truly a very intriguing subject.  Really there is no correct answer to the question, “What are the symptoms of Kundalini Rising?”, as thankfully, each of us is absolutely unique and thus, on a unique trajectory on the path to Kundalini Awakening.  That said, there are some common kundalini experiences that are often reported, which I would like to share with you in this article.

Although we can draw up endless lists of symptoms from third party accounts, I would like to instead make this series about kundalini symptoms that you or I have actually experienced.  In this article, I will give a recent account from one of my students about what she experienced shortly after class, and then I will add my own kundalini experiences and observations as well. 

In the comments section, I encourage you to add any kundalini awakening experiences or symptoms you have felt, so others can better understand what they might be going through.  Here is the recent email I received from my student, Aida:

Aida’s Experience of Kundalini Awakening:

I am a student of the “Gentle Kundalini Class”. I just finished taking a series of exercise specifically for the spine.
 
As I left the class I felt energized as I usually feel after each class, but this time it was a little different, I was feeling extra aware of my surrounding. Like a light turned on. My back was so straight. It lasted all day.
 
If I could go to class every morning I would go. It makes my day start right in every way. And there are times when I am not feeling like going to class and I push myself to go and do not regret it.
 
Thank you for being my teacher.
Aida D. 

For those interested, here is a link to the Spinal Warmup Kundalini Yoga Kriya we did in class that day.  Thank you Aida, for sharing your personal experiences with us.

This particular experience of kundalini is very interesting and significant.  This is because it is the common experience of advanced meditation and of kundalini yoga.  In the article, Powerful Kundalini Yoga Battles Profound Zen Meditation, I described my own such experience with kundalini awakening, but not from doing kundalini yoga, but instead from doing Silent Mind Meditation!

Aida’s experience points at the two things that all yoga and meditation boils down to.  Energy and Awareness. 

My favorite description of Kundalini Yoga is, “The Yoga of Awareness,” and as you see from her account, she felt more aware, as the energy of kundalini had risen up her spine.  In meditation, it is the same.  The demand for intense awareness, in order to comprehend the thought process via direct perception, leads to energy (kundalini) rising up and elongating the spine.  Awareness then follows.

Jiddu Krishnamurti describes this experience of kundlaini energy flowing up the spine as “The rush of water filling up and thus causing a pipe to stand erect.”

When we insist that the spine be straight during meditation, it is simply to facilitate this awakening and thus, to assist in being more aware.  I have experienced kundalini rising and puling up with such force, during meditation, that it sometimes make me feel as if I am going to be launched right off the ground or as if it’s going to pull my head off and up into the sky.

Kundalini Awakening in Meditation

Symptoms of Kundalini Awakening:

I am going to describe some of the physical symptoms my students or I have felt due to kundalini awakening.  I know there are many emotional and mental symptoms as well, and you are welcome to share those with us in the comments section below.  I am grouping the experiences into 3 categories, common, uncommon and rare, according to what I have observed.

Common Kundalini Awakening Symptoms:

  • Tingling in the body and brain region.  Also sometimes described as ants walking, tickling energy or flushes of energy.  The brain being flushed with energy is quite pleasant :-).
  • Heat or cold in the system, or running along various channels and chakra centers.
  • Fluttering or twitching of muscles.
  • Pinching or burning in various regions of the body or brain.

Uncommon Kundalini Awakening Symptoms:

  • Pressure in the Third Eye Region (Ajna Chakra).  This is pressure, tingling or other sensation in the center of the forehead.  Can go on for years (14 years and counting so far for me).  Caution: If the pressure, due to certain practices, intensifies to uncomfortable levels you feel are “immense”, you should cease that practice and consult a competent kundalini yoga teacher.
  • Sudden bursts of energy anywhere in the body.  These are almost always short lived, from a few seconds to a few minutes.
  • Spontaneous yoga asans or kundalini yoga movements.  They may come on spontaneously, or they may take over, as if on auto-pilot when one is practicing  Kundalini Yoga Kriyas or Exercises (For an example see article: Explosive Kundalini Rising in Class Today).
  • Kundalini Shakti rising up and elongating the spine.
  • Incredible feeling of love and desire for your partner (not ordinary lust, alcohol induced or otherwise :-).  Usually comes upon you spontaneously, deep in the night.  Sex feels like it’s the first such experience and the intense feelings of attraction emanate from somewhere beyond yourself.
  • Unfortunately, pain in the lower back, back of the neck and headaches.

Rare Kundalini Awakening Symptoms:

  • Experience of divine light within.  Very intense light, usually pure white and incredibly beautiful.  I call it the Radiation of the Lord.
  • Tremendous vibratory energy (sometimes feels like it’s coming from the inner ears).  Very blissful, but can intensify to the point where it would completely overwhelm your consciousness if you let it.
  • Spontaneous bliss, intensely pleasurable.
  • This one is a bit scary.  Complete paralysis of the body.  Complete immobility and rigidity takes place.  As with the all consuming vibratory energy, it requires some courage to allow.
  • This one is exceedingly rare.  I have experienced it only once in my life, and have only ever read about it being experienced by one other – the master of awareness, G. I. Gurdjieff.  The arms and legs churn like that of a baby.  It happens naturally and cannot be simulated.  It is also intensely pleasurable and quite a remarkable experience.

There are of course a wide range of transcendental experiences, some of which you will find described in the category Spiritual Enlightenment Experiences.  Above, I have provide those that are more commonly associated with kundalini awakening, although many would argue, including Swami Vivekananda, that all enlightenment experiences have to do with kundalini entering the brain region in some capacity.

So if you have experienced some kundalini symptoms as well, please do share them with us below.  I think it will benefit others identify if what they are going through is actually symptoms of the ever mysterious kundalini awakening.

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  1. Jane
    Jane says:

    Hey, I love this site. Well anyways, lately I have had that constant warming in the crown of the head. And also, every night when I’m laying in bed, I think I’m about to fall asleep, I get a burst of energy that starts at the crown of my head and shoots down my spine that forces my back to arch for a couple of seconds-like it’s a reflex. It’s a very powerful energy and it scared me at first. It’s all only started just recently, though. So this is normal, then? Phew, I hope so. And also, what is the difference between Kudalini awakening and Kundalini syndrome?

    Reply
  2. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Hi Maria,

    Yes it certainly is a Kundalini experience that you are describing. I would not force it to rise to the head or up the spine. I would instead suggest to simply get to work with regard to getting your body and systems in very good shape.

    Thus trust and allow the energy to rise when the systems are ready. This would also help you deal with it when it happes as Kundalni is not always easy to handle.

    To start, I suggest the free online kundalini yoga course (101). Also, pay close attention to what you body wants at this time. More rest, different food, time alone, time in nature, exercise, etc and see if you can cater to it.

    Keep us posted.

    All Good Wishes,
    Anmol

    Reply
  3. Maria Carbonell
    Maria Carbonell says:

    Yes, I had a spontaneous Kundalini awakening (or partial awakening) on August 27th of 2008. I was sitting at my computer checking emails when all of a sudden I felt a vibration as if I were sitting on my ipod. When I got up from the chair to look, I realized that there was nothing there, but the vibration continued…I noticed it was exactly like a cat’s purr. This lasted for several weeks, the purring….it made me feel strange because nobody else was experiencing that and could not help me, and I wasn’t about to be telling people that I was purring in the Muladhara.. Then there was a powerful pressure on the organs…..that lasted several days. Now I do not feel a powerful pressure (I think my body has gotten used to it) but I can still feel the energy in my belly. It has not risen to the head yet and I do not know why. I have had ecstatic feelings, feelings of fullness, nausea, a richness in the blood feeling, but nothing really “up the spine.” I have felt on occasion, very hot as if it is a hot day, and I sweat (sometimes it really is), but people tell me that it is not hot. But I am also in the menopause and that is a normal thing for my age, which is 55. I don’t know if it is also a part of the Kundalini experience. I would surely like to know what kind of exercises I should be doing. I know it is important not to try and “force” things, but I really would like for the energy to get to the head, where it is supposed to go/be. Thanks for any suggestions. I really don’t know what I should be doing, if anything, and there is not much serious information out there on the internet about this happening or condition, nor is there any advice available to people who are undergoing something similar. I think I need some advice. I think the problem lies in that there are few people around who really have had this experience first hand, and know what to do about it.

    Reply
  4. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Hi Nishit,

    It is almost undoubtedly kundalini. I have had the experience of paralysis (yes quite scary) and have the pressure in my forehead as a constant companion.

    I suggest you read the following 2 accounts from A D (please read the second as well, so you are not put off) of kundalini and paralysis. It is really a personal choice if you want to allow kundalini to flow and deal with all that it entails.

    http://www.realization.org/page/doc0/doc0053.htm

    http://sites.google.com/site/kundalinimanagement/Home

    I will suggest to really develop your body and systems though if you want to proceed with kundalini awakening. Let me know anytime if I can help further.

    Best,
    Anmol

    PS: Also, if you do read the accounts, I was in touch with A D recently and he is doing very well now.

    Reply
  5. Nishit
    Nishit says:

    Hi Anmol,

    I dont know whether it is an awakened Kundalini (Muladhar) ot just a state of tired brain. some time I have to wake up till early morning (before it was due to study and now official work). When I go to bed at 3 or 4 am, I am very tired (mentally as well as physically). After about 10 – 15 mins, I feel complete paralysis of my body. Here, I mean, I can see the things in my room (so conscious to outer world) but could not move my body even an inch. I feel like I am going to die. Due to this fear, I start to put my all efforts (mentally and physically) to move even my hand. After some time and great amount of effort, I can manage to get up from bed. Normally, I have this experience whenever I am tired by working or reading the whole night. I do some yogasana and excersises daily (sometimes miss couple of days). Apart from this experience, since last two weeks, I also have feeling of pressure in between eyebrows directing upward whenever I take deep and conscious breath continuously. (I’ve started pranayam and meditation with yogasan since last month) Do you have any comments or guidance from your asset of experiences or knowledge in above cases?

    Reply
  6. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Dear Nirankar,

    Very helpful insights into the challenges and changes that Kundalini Yoga brings about.

    Thank you for sharing your experiences with us, and adding to the discussion.

    All Good Wishes,
    Anmol

    Reply
  7. NirankarSingh
    NirankarSingh says:

    I am a kundalini yoga instructor and practitioner and some of the experiences that I had along my practice is that kundalini Yoga has a the huge capacity of generating a clear mind and eliminating subconscious trash.
    Some of the symptoms of this are sometimes having stages of a lot of dreams and then not having them for a long time.
    Other symptom that I consider very important in Kundalini Yoga is having stages where you have many emotional changes and you might be thinking a lot of problems in your personality, sometimes you might get depressed because of this and sometimes you will be glad that you get to see this.
    In my opinion when I think this is one of the final stages of kundalini awakening, when you can simply be in sunnya, be non reactive and not live in duality and attachments,in other words simply be…your self!

    Reply
  8. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Hi Nancy,

    Yes that certainly was a kundalini awakening episode. It is very nice to hear that you are able to manage this energy and that you are using it to heal and uplift others.

    All Good Wishes,
    Anmol

    Reply
  9. Nancy
    Nancy says:

    Hello Anmol

    Looking at some of the comments/symptoms, what I thought was kundalini awakening may not have been.
    It started in my root chakra feeling like a wheel spinning, then the energy started up my spine, pausing at each chakra (I think- didn’t know about chakras then) before bursting through up to the next one where it bounced off it a few times and burst through again, continuing this process through each chakra to the top of my head.
    The energy radiated then so powerfully I was not aware of the edges of my body-was just one big energy ball. My late brother started the experience when he moved his energies into mine- at one point I had to get the energy to back off as I feared I would incinerate. Later did it on my own and used the energies to heal others.
    Was that a kundalini awakening?

    Reply
  10. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Hi Harpreet,

    My teacher was actually Ravi Singh, I did not have the good fortune of meeting Yogi Bhajan, but you will find lots of mention of Yogi Bhajan throughout the website (you can find those by searching for him in the search box in the top right corner).

    You will also find discussion of Adi Mantra in the linked article regarding the importance of tuning in.

    The website is ever growing though and I do plan to add more Kundalini Yoga details and information, so am certainly open to suggestions and ideas.

    All Good Wishes,
    Anmol

    Reply
  11. Harpreet
    Harpreet says:

    There seems to be no mention of Yogi Bhajan, yet this is Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan!? I find that very strange but I do like that you are sharing this empowering technology for the excellence of all. There also seems to be no mention of the importance of tuning in (adi mantra) and out (sat nam) of kundalini yoga practice, is there a reason for this?

    Reply
  12. Ilian
    Ilian says:

    Thank you, Anmol

    For this and the other comments, recent days I haven’t had such enlightening experiences, but still I was a bit scared and confused by the changes. But the night before last night I had an insomniac episode and didn’t have anything to do so I practiced variations of meditation and pranayama. I went to sleep at around 6:30 am and woke up at 10:30. Although yesterday I lacked sleep I was able to concentrate on making practice tests the whole day and it was just great. If I could concentrate and make my every day experience as pure as that one I’d be a very happy guy ;)

    So my thanks again for your fast responses, I know you are a busy man so thank you again.
    Ilian

    Reply
  13. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Hi Ilian,

    Yes, it is not uncommon to have remarkable “transcendental” experiences during the very early stages of yoga and meditation practice. It is because energy pathways are suddenly being allowed to open and flow, leading to such experiences.

    They tend to settle down after the early “exciting” phase unfortunately :-D, and leave us with sometimes years of what is generally called the “integration phase”.

    Also, your experience of meditation sessions being more effective at night is not uncommon either. It is generally because the conscious mind is finally done and at ease, thus allowing awareness to travel deeper. It is one of my favorite times to meditate as well.

    Interesting experience with your intuitive nature. Sometimes these abilities come and go, keep us updated on your condition. It is certainly fascinating.

    Best,
    Anmol

    Reply
  14. Ilian
    Ilian says:

    Hello again,

    Before I forget I want to say that I’ve been experiencing some tickling sensations while trying to guess when something might happen. For instance I’ve been getting this sensation when trying to guess when the toast I’m doing is going to pop out of the toaster. And the closer it gets the stronger the feeling gets and after the toast has popped up the feeling just disappears.

    One more thing I forgot to mention was that I’ve found it hard to go to sleep these past 2 days. I usually go to bed at around 4 am :). I also felt tingling in my feet almost all of the time of the meditation. Furthermore I felt coldness in my feet and hands(and something like energy flickering between my hands) and I’m not sure about divine light inside but I felt a couple of bursts of light(but I’m not sure if that wasn’t just the light bulb flickering ;) ). I felt like my hands were drifting away from my head.

    Also I wanted to ask you why my night sessions of meditation are much better than my day time ones. I mean during 12-1 am I have a meditation session just before sitting down to program and this helps me focus. This session is much better than the one I have at 2-3 pm. Also tonight I wasn’t able to concentrate enough to experience an effect from the meditation :(

    Regards,
    Ilian

    Reply
  15. Ilian
    Ilian says:

    Hi Anmol,

    Is it possible to start having these awakening symptoms after only your second meditation. Because I can swear that tonight I during only my second meditation I felt the tingly sensations, pain in the back and the neck(and just a little bit of headache and pressure on the Third Eye), also fluttering or twitching of muscles and spontaneous bliss and pleasure. This pleasure didn’t stay with me the whole night, but something around 20 to 30 minutes after the meditation. Also I felt lightheaded.

    Regards,
    Ilian

    Reply
  16. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Hi Nyporter,

    Yes, it is possible to get this pressure from Reiki, but it is also possible that you were attending to this area during the session, which would certainly lead to activating the chakra.

    Best,
    Anmol

    Reply
  17. NyPorter
    NyPorter says:

    Hi Anmol,

    Thanks for your response. I had one other question

    Do you think any of above symptoms ( for example intense pressure in head/skull etc) is possible in Reiki, if some one is giving Reiki to me,

    Thanks
    Nyporter

    Reply
  18. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Hey NyPorter,

    Thanks for sharing these symptoms of your spiritual journey with us. Hope the insomnia/fear settle down.

    I use Ayurvedic techniques to deal with these two symptoms in particular (try to reduce vata (air element) and increase kapha (earth element), I am slight in build so this is in general a good strategy for me).

    All Good Wishes,
    Anmol

    Reply
  19. NyPorter
    NyPorter says:

    Hi All,
    Below are some of my experiences. Wanted to share it with of you folks

    1. Intense pressure in crown head area
    2. Involuntary Vibrations
    3. While meditating feels like consciousness is expanding
    It seems to grow.If I try to do this voluntarily it does
    create lots of mental stress
    4. Intense pressure/energy in crown head area when in temples/religious places and reading religious scriptures

    5. Insomnia/fear of unknown of late

    6 Energy rushes circulating in body from top to down mostly

    7 Once during intense meditation felt like consiousness was souring high and high.
    Like when you are riding one of those joy rides in six flags.

    8 Itching/ feeling of heat in lower spine area.

    9 Emotional experiences when think/see something spiritual. Have become very deeply spiritual

    10 Tingling sensations in Feet sometimes

    11 Pain in left leg often

    Regards
    NyPorter

    Reply
  20. Anmol Mehta
    Anmol Mehta says:

    Hi Rahul,

    Often such early “explosions” happen and then one undertakes perhaps years of yoga and meditation to see the process through to completion. You have received the invitation from beyond, time to make your way to the party :-D.

    Best,
    Anmol

    Reply

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