Tag Archives: spinal currents

Focusing Mind for Deeper Meditations, Part III

Using will and intention to focus the attention to one-point may have less than satisfactory results, especially if using the mind to focus the mind. I have found that incorporating the feeling/sensation aspect of the body is crucial in “holding” the mind in place.

Oftentimes, our notions about the “focused mind” is very different from the actual visceral experience of the focused mind. There is a sensation/feeling involved…and the feeling is like an energetic “grid” that holds/focuses the mind.

In normal waking consciousness, we focus upon our day-to-day duties and responsibilities and more often than not “float” around with little awareness when not involved in work or duties. The mind defaults to habitual patterns, engaging in what we “like” and moving away from what we do not like.

Sometimes we get “pulled” towards all manner of distractions and desires, losing endless hours, days…lifetimes, unmindful of all the forces, subtle and not-so-subtle at play in our lives!

When mindfully feeling into subtlety, the direction of focus is inwards, to the overall resonance of all that we feel in the moment. Initially the mind will think/say, “So what! Big deal!”

Now, for want of allowing ourselves to go a little below the surface of habitual, familiar patterns of thinking and feeling, we remain disconnected from unexplored realms of breathtaking beauty…

Even when we have an intention to connect with subtlety, even when we have a meditation practice, the mind can remain a formidable gate keeper, preventing us from entering the depths of meditation.

In my experience, even with years and years of regular and long practice of meditation, I found the Divine Subtlety elusive. I had a particular meditation technique and routine that I did my best to follow…but found that I reached a plateau. I found that my mind would inevitably wander into subconscious memories, distractions, sleep, etc.

What happened? Well, in my “practice” of meditation technique, I would keep my body in meditation posture and then practice technique, which called for focusing on certain “currents” in the spine, while inwardly observing the incoming and outgoing breaths.

As mentioned, for the life of me, I could not seem to get beyond a certain depth in my meditations. It wasn’t until leaving the ashram and releasing the tight hold that I had on meditation practice that I came to feel the very fine currents in the spine.

In the ashram, I was practicing technique, but was not allowing myself to feel the very subtle push/pull/play of the “life force” moving delicately in the body and especially in the spine.

What I mean by this is that in holding my body in certain meditation posture, using will to keep it still, I was not tuning into, feeling the subtle play of energies (life force) at play in maintaining the erect posture.

I was also not feeling into the subtle sensations of the incoming and outgoing breaths. In my deep release of the ashram, along with my rigid attachments to meditation techniques, I found the life force automatically adjusting and moving the body in “micro-movements.”

Meditation then became a dance of exquisitely fine sensations, moving so very delicately in the spine, holding the body/mind/psyche as though electrified!

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Filed under bliss, Higher Self, Kundalini, mind, mindfulness, Observer, Places beyond the mind, Watching the breath

Listening to the Intuitive Voice, Part VI

[Continued from Part V] Think of it in this way: when first learning to dance, it can be helpful to learn some dance moves, but after the initial “getting familiar” period of learning, it is not satisfying to remain in the superficial levels of technique. Going deeper and deeper into the subtleties of movement and rhythm, technique can be released and one can surrender to the natural power and splendor of how life force wishes to dance in the body.

Similarly, meditation technique is helpful in creating the setting for connecting with the subtleties of the life force, but technique does not necessarily lead to a deeper and deeper release/surrender to the flow of the underlying current.

The inner prompts of life force moving through the body and spinal centers may guide/suggest a very different posture, movement of body and breath, position of eyes, focus of attention, etc. To rigidly adhere to meditation technique during such times can work against the very intention of your meditation practice.

In many instances, I believe the all-important “missing ingredient” of meditation practice is the simple feeling deeper and deeper into the overall sensation of the body, the resonance of all sensations felt as one vibration, one “Hum” of Being.

With this particular approach, the mind maintains a fairly easy focus/concentration…as the very subtlety of the underlying “Hum” of the body and spinal centers have an innately blissful feel…and bliss is very easy to maintain one-pointed attention on!

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Meditation Techniques: Can They Awaken Kundalini? Part V

When Kundalini awakens in the spinal centers, it does not seem to be an incident that can be “compartmentalized,” kept separate from other areas of our lives. At least in my experience, it has a way of touching/affecting every aspect of life…and sometimes in unexpected and uncomfortable ways.

The experience of the awakening Kundalini has a way of shaking us to our core. Its energy can be disassembling, pulverizing…dissolving our neat and tidy spiritual world view that hitherto served to impart such security.

It seems that when Kundalini begins to move/awaken, there is also a great breaking down, shaking apart of things in our lives that are not in resonance with Her vibration…and Her “frequency” can dredge up all manner of old patterns of thinking/feeling. To unwisely cling onto these patterns is painful.

Kundalini moving through the spine fosters a different relationship with our life force, with our sense of Self. Her energy has a different feel or texture, recognizable more like a kind of nectar-like fluid that has an underlying “sweetness” of sensation.

It seems that the resonance of Kundalini has a way of shifting our relationship with everything, creating/attracting circumstances that tests us to our limits! What might then seem like a series of “bad luck,” chaos, illness, impossible challenges, etc., in retrospect can be seen as a kind of initiation by Kundalini, that is meant for us to release all that is no longer in resonance with Her Vibration.

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The Body as Doorway to Spirit — Connecting with the Spinal Currents

This post describes a way of using the body’s fine sensitivities to connect with subtle energies in the spine. For practitioners of Kriya Yoga or Kundalini Yoga, the following process is one that I have found to be a simple entryway into the spine and spinal currents.

Acrylic on canvas by Bruce Manaka

The use of visualization and mental imagery has great power when integrated somatically with the sensations that arise in the body. For example, when visualizing energy in the spine, it is fairly easy to “feel” the nuances of vibration when the body is allowed to adjust in fine micro-movements to the inner prompts of sensations. In other words, “going with the flow.”

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Any posture will do to help you feel the spinal currents: a slight twist of the spine coupled with deep feeling. The gently held tension builds up the energetic field. As you feel the bubbling sensations that arise, the mind finds an easy focal point upon the energies that seem to grow automatically. With the intensity of focus and the heightening of energy, the change in the frequency range of the body also shifts. As resonance changes, so the mind/consciousness changes, going deeper into the subtle vibratory realms of thoughts and feelings. Meditation then becomes a process of distillation, a refinement of energies, thoughts and sensations into their essences, which then seem to move like a kind of nectar through the bodily field. The experience generates a Bliss response.

Bruce Manaka Art

As you familiarize yourself with this energy, the mind can focus upon any part of the body and feel its connection with the subtle spinal currents. For example, when focusing upon the fine energies in the hands, their movements and mudras become extremely powerful in their capacity to connect with currents in the spine. This is not difficult when we just allow ourselves to feel and luxuriate in the gentle waves of sensations.

Energy (Prana) grows/expands in the bodily field the more we allow ourselves to experience/feel the sensations that arise. The body then helps the energy along by “squeezing” it through the fine channels of the spine. The natural movement of this energy stretches the body upward, elongating the spine as though a powerful magnet lifts the spine and head. A kind of dynamic tension occurs and the balance of tension/relaxation engages as a way to prolong and deepen the Bliss experience.

At a certain point, the body seems to require a shift in posture as a way to release the buildup of energy and as a way to prevent physical exhaustion. The capacity of the body to receive greater and greater “voltage” of this energy increases and the body becomes like a conduit of Divine Energy that expands in resonance with the wider field of “sacred space.” The mind shifts with the heightening of energies…it rises and moves with the radiant waves, with the pulsations of the heaving Ocean of Spirit!

The dance of tension/relaxation that occurs in the field of the body, especially in the spine, becomes a push/pull/squeeze of sensations. Again, this is done with fine micro-movements and ultimately with no discernible movements at all. The mind/body is then experienced as a kind of geometry that is connected intimately with sensations and postures…a pattern of Creation, a radiance of Spirit!

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Danced by Kundalini

The resonance of the body shifts as you allow yourself to “just be” in your meditation “practice.” The idea of “practicing” meditation falls away as you tune deeper and deeper into the experience of the energetic field, allowing the awareness of its magnetic current to expand naturally and easily. In this way, meditation becomes a doorway or portal to the Divine Current, a great releasing of self to the dance and radiation of Spirit! It may outwardly look like quietly sitting, or it may look like a whirling dance of ecstatic movement. In utter stillness or ecstatic dance, the inner experience is a total abandonment to the Blissful Current!

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It is interesting to note that in my serious “practice” of meditation (Kriya technique), my seriousness and adherence to the strict discipline of meditation would ironically and ultimately be the “wall” beyond which I could not, for the life of me, seem to be able to go beyond. I derived a lot of satisfaction and sense of peace from meditation, but after years of “practice,” it became a static routine.

Looking back at those years, it is very easy now to see that I was needing to lighten up… a lot… a whole lot! Now there are many positives that can be derived from being strict and disciplined… It’s just that my narrow focus on technique became a rigid barrier to the openness and fluidity required in order to “feel” the delicate and subtle Bliss currents. I was so intent on “finding God” and “getting into the spine” that I missed Her gentle touch during the many times that She tried to get my attention. I was so busy doing my “108 kriyas” and six hour meditations that I did not know how to recognize her voice, nor did I know how to respond whenever She invited me to “come out and play.” I learned well to hide behind my meditations and discipline.

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Connecting with the Kundalini Bliss currents in the spine is in some ways like learning to ride a bicycle… once you learn, you never forget. The point is in getting to that place wherein you viscerally “know” and can “feel” the connection, the sensations that seem to arise from the deepest primordial feelings connected with pleasure, survival, fear, love, etc. We already are familiar with these sensations. It’s just that we humans, for the most part, have forgotten how to “dance” with Kundalini… we have also forgotten how to “be” danced by Her.

This is where “lightening up” comes in… releasing rigidity around the many layers of beliefs and assumptions that we may have about God, Guru, spirituality, techniques, etc. These beliefs may be perfectly beautiful and fine, but the idea is to allow a wider space, a beginner’s mindset in order for expansion to happen. Kundalini seems to require a very large field of play wherever She shows up!

When She does show up, perhaps as a gentle sensation in the spine, it is helpful to relax and “pay attention,” to feel deeply. This may all sound quite obvious, but the idea is to “follow subtlety,” to follow the finest nuances of vibration and sensations as they move in the bodily field. As you learn to apprehend finer and finer sensations, you also learn that the entire body can be thought of as a “Bliss Generating Machine.” You then have learned to dance with Kundalini and to be danced by Her!

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Filed under Higher Self, Kundalini, Love, mind, Places beyond the mind, Receiving Spirit, Uncategorized