What Is Kundalini Yoga and Meditation?
The term Kundalini refers to the activation of consciousness. It is a lifelong process of discovering the universal truths of the human condition. In other words, understanding that suffering is real, everyone experiences it and there are means by which, this can be a joyful discovery rather than a painful path.
Kundalini Yoga is the Yoga of Awareness. It is a practice that helps to tune the body so that consciousness can rise. Kundalini Yoga does not force Kundalini to rise, it is a gradual process of awakening. Each Kundalini Yoga class uses Mantra, movement, breathwork, and meditation to attune the nervous system, harmonize body, mind and spirit and stimulate the The chakras are energy centres that absorb and reflect our base disposition in life.
Meditation is one of the most important aspects of a Kundalini Yoga class. While mamy Yoga practices in the west have omitted meditation, Kundalini Yoga focuses on this element. The movements in Kundalini Yoga collectively help to warm up, strengthen, lengthen and relax the body. Once this has been accomplished it is much easier to meditate. There are literally thousands of Kundalini Meditations. Each focuses on a different topic or aspect of life that can be re-engineered for success in life.
Purpose of Kundalini Meditation
Meditation as a broad principle is the opportunity to observe and notice the inclination of the mind. By sitting and reflecting on our thoughts, feelings and actions, we come to learn and understand that we are often painting a picture with our past experiences rather than participating in the present movement. A general rule of thumb,, when we feel regret we are living in the past and when we are feeling fear we are living in the future. Meditation asks us to come to the present moment and be with what is. Easier said than done.
Silent meditation is arguably the most challenging form of meditation. Given open space, the mind starts to run wild with thoughts, making it challenging for a practitioner to have a sense of peace and calm. We often get caught up in the thinking of thoughts rather than the observation of thoughts. The good news is meditation is not about getting things perfect. Meditating makes us good at life, the goal is not to get “good” at meditating. The very act of sitting and reflecting often gives us the clarity that we need. Yes, even if that clarity is - my mind thinks too much!
Benefits of Kundalini Meditation
There are literally thousands of unique Kundalini Meditations. They each have a specific purpose and intention for helping to heal and transform different aspects of life. You can choose a meditation to address addiction, anxiety or depression. There are meditations for attuning the chakras, creating prosperity, dealing with information overload as well as meditation to soothe a broken heart. You get the idea - there is a meditation for just about any topic. And they are all effective! So once you know what you need - either to boost an aspect in your life, or to break through a limitation - Kundalini Meditations can help.
Also, the very act of meditating can give you profound benefits. A few minutes a day can lower your heart rate, blood pressure, blood sugar and give you a fresh perspective. Experts from all reaches of science now concur that meditation can help with the stress of daily life. The question for most people who are curious about it is answered next.
How to practice Kundalini Meditation
What I love most about this style of meditation is that it is quick and it works! You can have a powerful and transformative experience after just 3 minutes of practice. In some meditation traditions, the minimum requirement is 20 minutes. As a beginner, this can be very daunting. Most of us can handle a few minutes and even look forward to more. Kundalini Meditation may use mantra, breath work and/or mudras as the focal point. These different techniques offer the mind something to pay attention to and that makes it easier to stay focussed. I’ve often sat down for a 5 minute meditation and been surprised at how quickly time passes when I’m in meditation. Each mediation is different so the best thing to do is find one that you feel drawn to and look for a practice video online. YouTube is a great source for this. You can visit my YouTube channel YogaVision Online.
How Long to Meditate?
That is totally up to you. It takes about 3 minutes for the body and mind to absorb a meditative experience. Some are prescribed for 11 or 31 minutes. Some are most effective with 2.5 hours of practice! It really depends on your willingness to sit and explore your mind set.
Prepare your Mind
The best way to begin a meditative practice is to do the following:
1. Choose a Location
Pick a place in your home, office, your car or an outdoor spot where you will not be disturbed for a few minutes. Make sure you are free of distractions. Turn your phone and any other devices off. I also stay away from the fridge!
2. Pick a Regular Time of Day.
Choose a time in your day where you have a few minutes to spare, where you are not rushed and can easily fold the meditation into your day. Morning, mid day, evening all are good options. In the beginning do your best to stick with a particular time. This will establish a body rhythm - once your body is trained to meditation, it will be much easier to sit for the full time. If the timing has to change from time to time, that is ok.
3. Start Small
Start with an intention to sit for 3 minutes. That may seem like forever, and eventually you will get used to it and may naturally want to increase the time. If you are new to meditating, it is self sabotage to intend on a 31 minute meditation. You have to build your muscle first.
4. Your Mind will Wander
Please accept this fact right away. Your mind is designed to think. Some thoughts we are consciously aware of. Others are floating beneath our awareness and may surface during meditation. Your goal is to observe these thoughts - not to avoid, get rid of, ignore or change. Let the thoughts come, and be curious about what they are leading you to. Once you find peace with thinking, the mystery of meditation ebbs away and you are brought directly to the benefits.
5. It’s a Process
You may have a Eureka moment on day one. That’s great. Or you may get bored and want to give up. That’s great. Be with all of it. Kundalini Meditation is not about entertainment. It’s not the same as turning on TikTok or Instagram or YouTube. It is about searching within. It takes a while to build trust between body and mind, mind and body. Do your best to be open and not look for an outcoming during your meditation. Often, the rewards are most obvious in random parts of your day. You will notice this as more calmness, a different response to minor annoyances, and increased capacity to speak your truth. This is in addition to the benefits that the meditation intends.
Posture and Breathwork
Kundalini Meditations can be down sitting on the ground or in a chair or even lying in bed (this option may make you a little sleepy so be aware!). Do your best to keep your spine straight. That is the most important part. Use any props you need to sit or lie comfortably. Pillows and blankets can be used to prop up the hips, cushion the ankles or placed under the knees to offer support. Props are for all practice levels, not just for beginners. Using props means you are willing to receive help rather than suffer through discomfort. When you are comfortable, your mind will relax and your meditation will be easier to experience. Before you start, warm up your body by taking a short walk, climb a set of stairs or follow this simple video for exercises for better meditation. Next, take a few long deep breaths and settle into your space, to your body and set an intention for your practice. Start your practice and notice what starts to unfold in your life.
If you are looking for guidance on finding the right Mantra, reach out to me and schedule a numerology session. We will work together to assess your meditation journey and chose the practice that works best for you at this time in your life.