Archives for the month of: January, 2021
Mudra

So far, these are the main means I have found for facilitating the flow of the energy called prana or qi (chi). There may be more, and I would be glad to know of the ones you are aware of. This comes from someone who has no practice or teacher and is from a Western perspective. I used the simplest of methods and listened to my inner guidance that came as the river of light opened more and more within me. The one observation I have made after raising kundalini was that all of this is not difficult, and nor should it be hard to understand. All of this is about being human. Do not attempt raising kundalini without adequate preparation, however. Learning the art of surrender is one very important prerequisite. The main ways of facilitating the flow of prana:

  • Quieting the mind
  • Feeling
  • Breathwork
  • Movement

Quieting the Mind

This is not as simple as it seems. One goal of meditation is to quiet the mind, but as is often the case, we sit for some time waiting for all of our thoughts from the day to settle before we can begin the innermost work that meditation can bring us to. And then, once the thoughts do settle, what is the point? It has been known that when we quiet the mind enough, there is something that arises from the substratum of consciousness that can begin to show us clues to the deeper nature of consciousness as energy. Thus, as a result, for as simple as it is, meditation has been used by many cultures as the way to get to this point where the normal “monkey mind” is stilled. This takes work. It takes discipline. It is very helpful to do meditation the same time of the day each day if possible. I always meditated before bedtime because that was when the house was its most quiet and I was able to drop into a much quieter relaxed state. In the East, early morning (say, 4:00 a.m. for example) is often chosen as a good time to meditate because the body is not busy with digestion, and the mind is quiet from having been in sleep for a number of hours. By having a schedule your mind will be able to go into a quiet state must faster. Many years ago I practiced projection of consciousness and I was able to have some limited success with it. I practiced this each night as I went to bed. I was able to go immediately into an altered state and then “switch on” the astral state automatically whereby my astral awareness came to the fore. Before this, it took months to develop this state. My brain and body had become trained and it seemed to know that when I directed my attention along certain lines, it would follow along much quicker. Meditation is the same thing. If you train yourself through practice to reach a certain state with regularity, it becomes a snap to go into that state later once it has been practiced. The benefit of meditation as it relates to prana or chi is that you can begin to become familiar with the energy. By simply watching it or observing it you can find that it reacts simply to your act of observation. It is also possible to inhibit it as well, depending on how you respond to this activity. The best way is to try it. Prana will feel like the tide or flow upon which your consciousness moves, so they are very closely bound or connected. Feel “below” the thought to what is supporting your thought. What is it that is animating it? What is that quality that is making me alive, vital, and that gives my consciousness this presence and vitality?

It can often help to quiet the mind by keeping it busy with something else. I found a meditation technique very helpful in this regard where I placed my hands together and then put all of my awareness on the point where my hands touched. I held my attention there as long as possible. If my mind wandered, I didn’t beat myself up, I just went back to imagining I was looking at the point between my hands. I put myself there between them. After a while, I found that I had this very open and vast state begin to open up within me. It came about not by focusing on how it was happening. Being aware that it was happening using the “I” awareness caused it to stop immediately. It was at first a very odd sort of state I was reaching, but it was a prelude to a full blown awakening. It was very similar to never focusing on anything in particular when you are using your eye, except in this case it is your inner attention. There is a defocusing that seems to be happening in this other state. If you begin to focus on anything, becoming self-conscious, anything that was happening would immediately stop. I was dragging in my sharp focus of ego-awareness (left brain activity) into a state that was much more broadly “focused.” The usual way just didn’t work. The wave of cosmic consciousness would collaps and I would be left grasping at straws. Over time I found that a lot of energetic phenomenon began to happen once I entered into this defocused state, along with suddenly being suffused in a brilliant white light. After that encounter with the white light, things began to change. I began having more and more prana-based events, and not all were known to have been prana at the time. But being able to enter into what is called a state of “presence” helps to still mind by training the mind to be more and more quiet. This could take a good deal of time to achieve even moments of silence or relative quiet, but the brain will learn to fall into a meditative state when you train it through repetition, and then it will be easier each time. The point is not to do anything when there, the point is to feel and to be aware of the energy that is present in you. It is possible to train the mind/brain to enter a deep state through just about any trigger, really. It is all about association and the mind needs that association to remind it where it needs to be. Sitting in a certain posture can do it, even. Music or a certain song can also do it. Routine.

Feeling

Feeling is the other side of the coin. It is also the one aspect that gets discounted the quickest by most folks. Prana is an intelligent energy and it communicates through feeling as does the intelligence of the cosmos. It is the rational mind that then takes the stream of information and assembles it. This is also how remote viewing works, by the way. So much of our capacity to feel, which is an important part of our capacity for awareness, can be hijacked by a rogues gallery of buried emotional material that can crowd out deeper feeling into the flow of prana. Pick something that inspires you, and there you will find your prana being released. It doesn’t matter what it is, but most often it will be something that makes you feel good in an authentic way, that makes you open up as you feel more and more expansive. Does a painting do that? Music? A certain line of thought? Thinking of someone you love also opens up channels for prana. Watch yourself when you feel this energy. Do you feel how effortless it is when it begins to move? That is its secret. Prana flows naturally and does not flow as well when we shut down. It Prana shuts down when we are self-conscious and opens up when we aren’t. Just don’t try and force it, just be present with it, watch it and learn what you are thinking and feeling when it does flow. Can you feel how different those two states are? In one state the valve is closed down and in the other it is open wide. You might think that there are all kinds of technical diagrams that you have to memorize, but no, it is much simpler than this, so simple a child can do it (and children do this naturally as they are less shut down). Walks in nature, the beach, your favorite places. Can you feel that shot of energy that goes from your pelvis up into your heart? That is prana moving. You can learn all about prana by learning to be exuberant. Gratitude does more to boost prana than any special meditation technique. You see, while you can focus prana with thought, prana responds to how you choose to feel in the moment. This is amazingly simple, and hopeful.

It is true that one reaches the highest state in samadhi through feeling. It is less what you do than what you don’t do. Any wonder why it is so hard to reach? Also, it is a unitary state that sparks kundalini awakening. This unitary state is where the two sides of the self come into unity and spark the generative force to move through the body, no longer “stored” in the base of the spine. People have spent decades studying it and attempting to get it to rise. The secret is that it is how you feel. Feeling moves the two opposites together so that nothing can stand before what it can do when joined together. Much of what kundalini has to teach you will be based less in rational thinking as your capacity to feel and then release stored emotion from the past (which kundalini does in its process of cleansing). This is not a rational process. Placing your hands together like I explained earlier is a form of this unitary state, and is a good start for being able to feel what energy does in your body. But do not play with trying to raise kundalini. Once it rises you are on a roller coaster. Learning the art of surrender is of singular importance. Whatever kundalini strips from you will be what does not serve you. People can “lose it” in a process like this, especially those with little appreciation for or understanding of how to work with this energy instead of against it. It is a great disrupter, all for the better in the end, but you need to ask yourself if you are up to the task, which will be life-consuming.

Breathwork

It is often said that prana is in the air. I find this a little funny because when tracing this down I see that people who say this go on to explain that when you breathe in the air, you can feel the energy. In my study I found that there is something about the act of breathing itself that is actually the thing that is stimulating prana. If you quiet your mind and settle in and take long slow breaths, holding them at the top and bottom of each inhale and exhale, you might find that your body begins to feel buoyant, calm, peaceful, and lovely….blissful, even. I sense that when we breathe like this we are telling the mind that we are calm and the mind and brain work like a loyal servant and begin putting out the chemistry of calm and bliss. Learning to keep the mind still and not running lots of thoughts, will make your ability to feel this energy beneath all of this easier to perceive.

Breathwork has evolved into a complex science in India with the practice of pranayama. You can hold breath and still the movement of prana. You can move prana through breathwork, too. The best way to be aware of how it can move in you is to do the simple types of breath exercises first to see how well this can work. You can wind up feeling so good sometimes that it can further train your mind to prefer those states where you can learn how to be much more simple minded, or single-minded. Again, this is not complicated. Keeping your field of awareness quiet and still might be the hard part. But this is something achieved through feeling, wanting that feeling more than you want to grab onto a thought. Don’t beat yourself up when your mind races ahead. It is natural. Bring it back, each time you teach yourself to be calm and quiet for a few moments longer. Moments turn to minutes, minutes can stretch into half an hour. Breathing has the power to quiet the mind and help you to forget the worries of the day. What I found and which was supported by the science on the parasympathetic nervous system is that when you breathe like you do when in a relaxed state, like sleep, this sends s signal to your brain and body that you are calm. You can sometimes even feel the shift or change in your physiology as you do this. Full and deep breaths with pauses at the top and bottom are veryeffective in calming yourself down and slow the monkey-mind. I have had students use breath work to calm down and to stop feeling stressed. it is not uncommon for breathe work to be so effective that within minutes of doing so when stressed, you forget what you were even worried about earlier. A different part of the mind is now being used instead of the part that “grinds” away at the things that you cannot control.

Another very effective form of breathing is alternating nostril breathing. You begin by holding one nostril closed while taking a long deliberate breath in, holding it for the count of three, and then exhaling. You can then close the other nostril and then do the same type of deep deliberate breath the same way. You can also take several breaths with on nostril closed and then alternate to the other nostril, making sure that you keep the number of breaths through each nostril balanced. You can begin to meditate, turning inward using breath work. Use it for as long as you need to reach deeper and deeper states of calm. Then, the only thing you will have to guard against is falling asleep! But what is the harm in doing that? None. Perhaps you need sleep. Try again the next day or next time and don’t beat yourself up about it. Eventually, you will be able to cultivate this quiet calm while being alert. Again, it is all conditioning. Like a body builder, this takes time and discipline. If you fell asleep in meditation, try next time to be as relaxed but try not to fall asleep. It is being alert but not busy in the mind. It is at this place, as you meditate, that you begin to feel your energy. It is really just that simple, because it is at this place where you can begin getting aquianted with your true nature.

Movement

How you move can help to open you to prana. Sitting in rigid postures will be less effective as more opening postures. How you move through space can have an effect on your awareness of prana flow. Ecstatic dance or any movement that feels particularly good to you will work. Prana responds to thought. Thinking that is hard and harsh will wash away a lot of the flow of prana. That said, intense emotion can release prana, too, but the emotion itself may be shaping the prana into forms that may feel less natural or organic. Many of the Chinese disciplines of Tai Chi and Chi Gung (also chigong) are designed to move prana or chi in the body, although tai chi is often described as more of an exercise using mindfulness over energy movement). It can release trapped emotion and it can also free up energy in the body. All good things.

Chigong works by focusing movement with attention on different areas of the body in a routine that seeks to open up awareness and the energy in each major part of the body. Energy goes where your attention is, and this discipline focuses it through movement as the hands move through the energy field and are used in a way that places or focuses energy in some areas and then others. Your mind follows the movements while having very little happening with the mind. It is cool trick. White Crane qigong is a very good system to follow and you might be surprised at how it helps you to feel. The movements are slow, meditative, and purposeful. There is an order and purpose to all of the moves since each move works on one area of the qi field. Like making sure you alternate nostril breathing in a balanced way as I told you earlier, the series of movements in a “set” is important to follow.

Qigong is itself like a moving meditation. It is good to do chigong with a teacher who understands what is being achieved for each movement so they can explain what the point is, but you can also follow along watching a video of a qigong practitioner. Is there magic in getting the moves exactly right? This is a system developed over centuries. Estimates place the age of qigong as being anywhere from 5-7,000 years old. Qigong stimulates the same points in the body that acupressure and acupuncture also stimulate. Qigong masters were often great healers as well.

In similar but different ways, yoga does achieve some similar results even though it is from a different tradition. The idea of bringing mind and body together is an important first step in any inner practice. Many of the stomach pumps that yogis do help to open up blocked energy in the body, for example. Also, by focusing on your body movement the mind is naturally quieter, so movement in this way has a great benefit in this regard. Over time as you become more and more aware of the flow of prana in the body, by placing different fingers into position with your thumb, you can often sense if you are sensitive enough (quiet mind), how those finger positions can route energy through your body in different ways. These positions are called mudras and each one achieves a different result. I can remember the point where I tried mudras at a time when my mind was quiet enough and I could feel the difference in the flow of energy. It was very much like how one might direct the flow of water to different parts of the body. Most often, when my mind is very busy, I cannot feel this flow of energy with the change of each mudra. I need myself to be very attentive, mindful, and quiet.

Finally, having your body worked on by a body worker who understands energy is another way to free up prana flow. Acupuncture achieves this, and deep tissue massage also does this. Observe how you feel after a good session with an acupuncture practitioner or a message therapist. You know how “out of it” that you feel? That feeling is what happens when prana is opened up in the body. The more this happens, the more effect that it can have on your consciousness. This state is excellent for meditation work, too. You can also learn or identify this “out of it” state this way and then look for it in meditation work. The problem is not feeling “out of it” but being in too focused of a state, having to do with the rational mind. It is precisely these parts of the mind that are best able to relate to energetic effects and that part is also the feeling side. Are you getting it? I tend to think that most people are naturally inoculated against feeling this way because it goes against the active “doer” that is seeded into the Western mind. It is very beneficial to let that sense go in your work.

Now this might be the hard part. Trust yourself and listen to your intuitition. Is breathing better to do first or will meditation get you right into the baseline state? The best way to know, if you have no idea where to begin, is to experiment. Intuition improves with greater pranic flow. It is possible to begin to hear the voice of your inner guidance begin to direct you. Or maybe not. It all depends on what your proclivity in this direction is. What is clear, though, is that a greater flow of prana or qi aids in better health. The entire endochrine system is stimulated and this has a benefit for healing and even slowing down the aging process. I am the second to youngest sibling in my family and while all of my other siblings have long since gone grey I am still holding on to my dark hair. A fluke? I noted prior to the awakening of kundalini that I was beginning to show some grey, but after awakening that process quite obviously stopped. It went onto pause for about ten years and has only recently begun to slowly advance. That, and I don’t get sick like I used to. Colds and the flu are all things of the past pretty much. That isn’t to say that when it is time to go that I wont get sick, but by that time, I will be ready.

You can, though, bear these main points in mind and use each of them in an effective way to tap into your own wellspring of energy. You can use breath to calm your mind prior to meditation. You can then use feeling in meditation to use that to explore more deeply your capacity to feel energy. Once you do these things well, you can begin to incorporate movement in a conscious way in your day to day to begin opening up the body and also feeling its native vitality as more energy begins to flow. Those are my tips and learning the art of becoming inspired is the single most important driver for being able to feel life to its fullest. It can be said that when you are able to cultivate gratitude in your life it has a way of washing away regret and any negative tendencies as you begin to see the good that is there waiting for you there. Prana responds to this kind of mental and emotional landscape. In a sense, like breathing, prana responds to saying “yes” to the abundance of life that is your birthright. This can become, with practice and exploration, and the cultivation of greater levels of prana, the path of ecstacy.

©Parker Stafford

The mystique of enlightenment tantalizes us with promises of a new world, a new mind, a new way to be. I sought, never really knowing where it might all lead to. Perhaps what the mystics and yogis had said, had whispered about, was an inaccessible realm for only the chosen few. What I know now, though, is I had forgotten what had graced my spirit upon coming into the world.

It remains a mystery to me why it took as long as it did. Was it just that I had some very real-world lessons to learn first? Did the mundane trump the transcendent? While there have been answers, questions crowd them out in greater number than ever before. It’s as if in seeing the “iridjuel,” a transcendental object existing at the end of time only serves to deepen the mystery. That may just be the point and the way of things. For myself, I am surprisingly more content now with the motley crowding-in of questions over answers. It is a bit like how poetry is. It never seems to give you a solid answer, it teases you along with still-greater possibilities, a greater inescapable reality. Like poetry, maybe the whole point is to be inspired and not answered. Perhaps it is better to have an experience over answers. And yet, along the way, answers do come, but they come about through a very different process than before. These answers, though, lead to a more informed kind of mind and heart filled with greater humanity and kindness, perhaps a sensitivity that appeals to the Shakti in each of us. Fiery, alive, but gentle and sensitive to the needs of the All.

What is so interesting is how we all come to these in our own way. I’m not suggesting that it is the same, though. Many paths, many arrivals. The moment that I think that there is a hard and fast answer, a path that is clear, I see so many other paths that weave in and out of my own and down into parts of the forest that I had never considered before. What is clear though is I can see how there was a single substantive move from the laser-focus of the logical rational mind to that of another which was its opposite which led me to this shore and the end of time which is like Terence McKenna’s “iridjuel,” the transcendental object at the end of time.

Was it just as simple as activating the power of the more feminine side of our brain, that right hemisphere? So much of what I saw happening in meditation when the lights came on was about this shift. If it weren’t for how the meditation technique was designed, I might have missed it. It appeared first like a giant empty room. I had been there countless times before. I might have dismissed it that time, passed it by and gone on to more active pursuits. But I stayed. I gave it time. Instead of a focus, it was the opposite of what I knew was that laser-like focus which we all had grown accustomed to and comfortable with. It was a focus, but without the usual sense of focusing. It is, in short, precisely what the non-dual crowd calls “not doing.” It was the opposite of “the doer.” It was observing but it was not aware in the same way. It was as if my mind had been switched off and a giant seemingly endless expanse opened up. This I think is what so many call the “void” and many back away from it both in fear and unknowing. It was in that darkness that the brightest of pure white light flashed before me, subsumed me for just a moment before receding, after which everything began to change. You could say it was my “journey to Damascus” moment.

I stuck with this new form of observation without a single-point because I found it novel, a new challenge to my mind. Curiosity had the best of me. And maybe I had tried so many different ways before this that I kind of shrugged and thought, what’s the harm? It wasn’t that this void was really empty. In it phenomena would rise and fall based on how well I didn’t drag into it my old focus, that old comfortable and certain laser focus. It invited me to open, open, and open still more. The more I did, the more it would show me. I considered the possibility that the void was perhaps just a gulf between two selves, one of which was incomprehensible to the other. If the other side to this new form of “focus” was apprehending, then this was a very different acquisition altogether. I didn’t catch a bird, I observed it through its very essence, whatever the object of my interest was. A window opened in my forehead and I saw images from a great distance. A hallway, an apartment, the windows, the arrangement of the furniture, the bedrooms and other things. I was lucky, I knew the person to whom these scenes belonged….I just didn’t know it at the time. Coincidence or synchronicity saw to it that its import was made known to me and I was placed on that person’s path. I was able to see that for as fantastical all of this was, for as seemingly self-created it could appear, what that window revealed was in fact images from a world away. I corresponded with the person to whom these images belonged, who was able to tell me how correct or true those images were. It was as if I had caught onto something that had been hidden in a seeming void, images shelved behind darkness that might never have been found had I remained incurious and remaining in my old ways. It all seemed impossible, and yet there it was. Over and over I tested this seeming novel capacity, always with a high degree of accurate results. If this was mere imagination, there should have been results that reflected that reality and I would have seen more misses than bullseyes. Somehow, it was as if my mind could imagine what wasn’t there before and could show me what did exist through some unknown capacity opening up within me. And surely this is what happens when we open our minds in this way. Psychics often describe how they seem to lack the filter that keeps such access to this phenomenon at bay. While it isn’t that important to have these experiences, it nonetheless is a symptom, a sign, of the change that is taking place. It turns out that this is a universal symptom regardless of your religious belief or school of thought. The Christians have it as “gifts of the spirit” and the Hindu have it as “siddhi.” They all come from the same precise phenomenon but go by different names.

If the old way of being was achieved by way of a linear progression and its laser focus, then this was a compliment to it. It emerged seemingly as if it was a divine compliment, for surely it was just that. It looked and smelled and felt like the simplest of tricks, a simple key in the lock that turned the tumblers of time and everything else with it. Yet, holding a key or grasping a lock alone would lead to nothing. The world remained as it was; as appearances only. Both were impotent apart, but both were suddenly potent when brought together. Together they opened up secrets, the unknowable, the impossible, and yes it all seemed like a fantasy at first until I found that no, these were very real things that I was seeing. I didn’t see them from the outside, but rather I felt them from the inside out. Everything was in reverse. I considered that I was sick, perhaps suffering from some brain malfunction for about two weeks, that is, until I realized that no, there was a basis for what appeared completely implausable. This is perhaps why the concept of union over-arches this experience in all of its forms. Left brain and right brain, always out of sync, always putting out different frequencies, now line up and are on the same page. They then create a third mind, a meta mind, which then opens its window into the world beyond the senses. Like a ladder adding to itself, it leads us into a new way and a new world within ourselves. It is apt calling one side the masculine and the other the feminine, for that is surely how they seem. The one caveat is that regardless of whether you are male of female, we all have the same two present in us. Like the rails of a ladder, when we bring them together with the rungs, we are able to climb up into the transcendent, into what science says isn’t possible. It was in the practices of shifting into the other lost rail of the ladder of our mind that I found the way upward. But just as it showed me the way upward it also showed me that it also goes downward and into the realm of shadow where if we release those old ghosts of our fear, we can continue higher with fearlessness and wonder.

It has helped to show how all people matter, how it is that different turns of mind are important as we reach the end of time and its realm of appearances. It always seemed as simple as hitting a whole new gear. We just didn’t know that this gear even existed. So simple, so broad in its implications.

I began to see how, through time, just as we had subsumed the inner Shakti within ourselves, so too did we subsume the Shakti’s in the world. As above, so below. Was it ordained that it be this way? Or was it just inevitable given how we had limited ourselves? More, every once in a great while there would come some person who was a teacher who would pass on something that would yield a brief period, a kind of renaissance of spirit, whose words would fill a scroll or book and we would be left scratching our heads wondering what or how they got to where they were. Like a tide, knowing would come flowing in and then after a time, it would flow out, seemingly lost to human comprehension and the limits it had placed on itself. Always a teacher to light that fire, fanning the flames as best as he or she could. Over and over, we would fall back into forgetting. Not all of them would, but the most worldly of them had an amazingly short half life.

That is why this time seems a completely different iteration of past events. Waking up as we have, without a teacher or any knowledge of the secret practices of yogis or mystics, perhaps millions may have already reached this further shore. Will it make this iteration different? Will it last? Is it a new wrinkle whose very presence will change the pattern for all time, or will it be just another tidal phenomenon, subject to the larger forces present in our cosmos and thus our own bodies?

While the left brain says “Aha!” It is the right brain that brings the myths which tell truths that facts cannot. So Shakti dances in a wreath of fire and beckons us to her mystery. Perhaps this time we can see the two impulses as not mutually exclusive, but capable, when brought together, or forming a window into a larger understanding of what those two sides represent when brought into union. It is why I think that both, set apart, will only offer up what they think they know instead of a larger view of what is. It seems nature has a proclivity toward having us learn how to cooperate between our disparate inner nature if we are to reach the prize. And what is this prize? Is it a definite object that we can know in a concrete way, or is it instead both mystery and known quantity that mystifies as much as it informs? Is it the gift that reveals how important it is to see both sides of things, which pulls us along in our curious journey to discover what has not previously occurred to us? Is the answer as much how the meta mind is created as the object at the end of time is composed? And as such, will that object always defy our attempts at grasping it, but remain like a ball of wool, indistinct, random, but from which, with the pinch of our mind, can grasp a small part of its incomprehensible nature and spin it into a coherent thread? And will those threads always be just one small aspect of a still larger whole? I tend to think as much, but I also observe that anything that you might ever want to know can be found and teased out in just the way that I have described. This represents the exact opposite of how we are taught learning can take place….and yet the transcendental object at the end of time remains, enigmatic as ever, urging us forward into some new understanding of ourselves and the cosmos itself.

I might never have thought that this was possible had it not happened over and over to me. Had I been less prone to digging in and seeing how the fantastic seemingly self-imagined objects I saw behind closed eyes were, I might not have seen that they were supported through fact and independent experience. And it isn’t even that doing such a thing is that important, it is I think, a signpost along the way that we are now in new territory. It says: The Transcendental Object At the End of Time Up Ahead.

A hundred years hence what I have considered may itself be seen through the tunnel of time as only one small wrinkle in a still larger unfolding. And yet, still, I cannot help but grasp that bit of air with my mind and pinch with my intention to spin out threads of coherent thought and discovery from the object that seems surely to exist at the “end” of time.

Shaktipot or Shaktipata is the process by which a teacher aids the student in stepping over the last barrier that divides them from an ordinary state of being and the expansion of consciousness that takes place with kundalini. If used incorrectly, it can awaken students who are not yet ready and it can cause problems. It can also not “take” because the student is not sufficiently prepared. However, it is possible to use it correctly when the teacher has a discerning mind to aid the person to step over that last barrier.

The great yogi and teacher Swami Rama speaks to this issue in a way that I think is one of the more enlightened and balanced ways of any teacher I have ever had the chance to listen to speak. Swami Rama also has many other teachings which have been recorded and are available online to watch. I have found that his approach has been the most sound and the most balanced.

For example, he points out that kundalini is not a goddess only, but is instead a fusion of the opposites of those qualities which we consider to be masculine and feminine within our consciousness. This is important to understand if you wish to understand what is at work with kundalini. Most say it is a goddess. If you know why that is, you might understand how “masculine” we are in our thinking and being. This in no way takes away from the experience the importance of the feminine, but it helps to show how kundalini is itself an act and phenomenon that seeks balance. I will say that what we term the feminine aspect in all of our consciousness (men and women both) is normally dormant, and it has as much to do with the “cosmic egg” resting at the base of the spine as it does with the two hemispheres of the brain.

For anyone who has experienced awakening you may have felt how a very feminine quality has suddenly come online. Have you ever considered why this is so? Could it be that as a culture and a species that we have favored the rational, linear and logical parts (and thus “masculine”) of ourselves more than the nonlinear, holistic, emotional (and thus “feminine”) aspects of ourselves? I consider kundalini to be a way whereby the two powers of mind are now brought into a unity, which then leads to the generation of a “new” mind which we call cosmic consciousness. If you take one away, the wave of awareness collapses. Both are necessary to produce this kind of mind I call the Meta Mind. It also shows us in our own lives how all of life matters, how all people matter. If we lose sight of this kundalini becames one-sided and our minds become one-sided, too. I know that I digress a bit, but sometimes these small points are important for helping iron out confusion.

Kundalini will clear the self of blocked emotion, and this is itself the imperative that kundalini has, which is to bring the person to greater balance, not drama or intensity or just “cosmic” experiences. For a time it feels dramatic as the kundalini is clearing out the blocks, but once this is done the energy settles down. The ancients describe how it becomes smooth. No ripples, no disturbances.

As a result, there is an entire generation of awakened people who have gotten used to its “intensity” when in fact it is kundalini doing what it does in the early stages of the process. The endgame is peace. The problem is that people can get stuck on the intensity and not let kundalini do its work. They like the intensity, the drama, the strong emotions that it brings up all without realizing that this emotion is the poison leaving the system. So to say that kundalini is one or the other misses the point and can leave you “one-sided” in your awareness. Yes, it connects us to higher order energies and those energies include what we think of as divine feminine and masculine….but so too does it connect us to other energies in consciousness that are just as beneficial to us.

Swami Rama’s teachings have been the most consistent in how it goes beyond any agenda. These kinds of teachers often are not as interesting to people who want something dramatic, but he is a teacher who has gotten beyond many of the conceits that often plague non-dual teachers. These conceits as I call them, often result in distortions of awareness and become an article of belief (which stills further investigation). As a result, these teachers repeat teachings that can only go so far and are not born out in more final or complete results. What do you think the result is when you have a teacher who does not know the true nature of self? Ideas like the self is an illusion, that all of life and reality are illusory, not real. While it is true that we are constantly judging or filtering what we see in the world, that alone is not what makes our world illusory. It is possible to see into the core of physical reality to see how it is composed. When I did that, it wasn’t that the world was an illusion but rather that it was a creation that was creating the appearance of solid matter from a source of great energy and purpose.

This is one example of how these teachers, no matter how much acclaim that they get from their followers, have missed important realities of the self and how it relates to cosmic consciousness. But who would know if the teacher him or herself does not know?

The teacher teaches something that is based on his or her own lack of understanding and awareness and this gets handed down and gets passed around to all of the other students, and it get repeated until everyone takes it as an article of faith. What do you think that person’s capacity for discernment might be under such a situation as this? But it gets worse; teacher after teacher then goes on repeating the same ideas and it seems to others who study their teachings that it must be, and the pattern only gets more deeply impressed on the community at large. If you say an untruth enough times it has a way of being accepted as truth and no one bothers to question it.

In my own experience I have seen that we take on selves and identities as an important part in our learning process. At no point have I ever seen self as false but instead as part of the process of becoming. But do not mistake the expansion of consciousness that comes with awakening to mean that the self is somehow false, it is simply part of a much larger story of how varied our consciousness is. We can experience both feeling separate as well as one. Both. They are not mutually exclusive. Why would they be? You come from the infinite and you have divided part of yourself to fit into this body, one chapter in a host of chapters called lifetimes. And despite how the self is decried as false, there is not a single one of these teachers who have shown how they can remove it with a waive of their own awareness. If it is an illusion, then why not pierce that illusion once and for all? Not a one. And so this is telling, the elephant in the room. Hopefully that elephant is Ganesh, the remover of obstacles, lol! Rama has much to say about ego, not as something to kill off, but to master. He even touches on this in the short but revealing video below.

So Rama is unique in the field. His teachings continue to show a great deal of awareness on a host of fronts. I am not one who “follows” a teacher, but what I have seen in his work has been a considerable level of insight. Yes, it is because without a teacher I have seen how his teachings have aligned with my direct experience.

How do I know that I myself am not buying into a belief? My earliest memory in this life was of choosing my parents. This was before I had a body. If ego is false and identity is false, how did I manage to have a sense of self at that point? Further, how did I recall numerous past lives? Given my level of recall (including two lost languages and historical accounts to back up some of my memories) I see the chance of simply “imagining” these things hard to square with Occams Razor.

I invite you to watch what he has to say about what a teacher can do for the student when it is done correctly…

Recently while watching a hawk trying to catch a mouse outside my window one morning, I began having a very unusual effect happen with my vision. It was quite curious; when I looked a certain way or focused my eyes a certain way the grass of the lawn outside rendered itself into a rich mandala-like pattern. It was unmistakable, and it took me by surprise. It would go away as I moved my eyes but I found that it would also come back and I would see the same pattern. It looked as if the landscape had arranged itself in a very coherent pattern visually. I wasn’t under the influence of any substance like a psychedelic.

I have never taken DMT, however, years ago when I was new to awakening, I often saw patterns like this in my mind and they were very similar to what I would later learn are called a Yantra, a mandala made up of triangular geometry. When I saw images in Indian culture that reminded me of the same patterns I saw in my mind’s eye, I figured that this may in fact be tied to some inner effects that awakening can have and artists illustrated them in the spiritual iconography of the yogis and yoginis who were experiencing this phenomenon as a result. I considered also that it was quite possible that in awakened states we may release small amounts of DMT, a substance that is in many plants and is produced by the body. It is a powerful psychedelic and if you are familiar with Terrence McKenna or Joe Rogan, you are likely to have gotten an introduction to its use and its effects.

People describe experiences of enhanced perception both visually but also of seeing other worlds open up to the mind and visual cortex when larger doses are taken. DMT is also present in the mixture called ayahuasca. What is so interesting to me is how both the ayahuasca, DMT, and awakening experiences all have the effect of aiding in the release of stored emotional blocks. I have considered that part of awakening involves the production of dmt (along with a host of other chemistry clustered in the endocrine system).

In the wake of my unusual encounter with my hawk as it tried to capture a mouse in the grass outside (actually it looked like it was playing with it…it never looked like it had actually found the mouse but that the mouse was hidden under a layer of dead grass thus protecting it—the effect was like a cat playing with a mouse, never really serious about catching it and eating it), I watched a video of a Joe Rogan podcast dealing with Covid and in the suggested section was a video of a graduate student describing the geometry of the DMT experience. It is entitled “The Hyperbolic Geometry Of DMT Experiences” on Youtube. It was an oddly timed discovery as I would soon find out.

I skimmed through the video and I came to a slide describing the different visual effects at different dosage levels. What was so interesting is the description of one dosage level that was identical to something I had seen the day I was looking outside my window that morning with the hawk. I will show you how the grass looked in a screen capture of their slide below:

What I saw corresponded to a known dosage amount, which is 4-8 milligram. I have wondered if it was possible during awakening, particularly with kundalini, whether we are experiencing elevated levels of dmt production, perhaps enough to briefly cause effects like the one I had recently seen.

I have observed that kundalini has had a very tangible series of physiological effects on the body, namely the endocrine system (which consists of the sexual organs, adrenal gland, pituitary, pancreas, thyroid, and pineal). The pineal gland is one center where dmt is suspected to be produced in small amounts in the body. Since I wasn’t that informed about the dmt trip aside from a few descriptions in videos, I found it interesting to find through some research that naturally occurring dmt experiences can be induced through breath work and meditation. Here was one source that describes a few of the symptoms of the natural dmt experience:

Common symptoms are as follows: pressure in the middle of the head and behind the sinuses, flashes of light with eyes closed, the feeling of the body vibrating as if laying on top of train tracks, twitching of the limbs, and a feeling of heaviness of the body.

http://q4lt.com/dmt-making-101

These are all symptoms that can be experienced with kundalini. One is suggestive of a third eye activation (not to say the pineal is the third eye—the third eye is a chakra and thus part of the energy body’s inner senses). Additionally, “ego death” and loss of ordinary identity happens at the correct dosage, another possible symptom depending how far along in the process that you are. Bliss has been reported as well as being able to overcome emotional issues from earlier life (including enhanced problem solving and intuitive powers of the mind). These are also features of kundalini (or can be experienced). My sense has been that the dmt experience is an analog to kundalini. Named the “spirit molecule” it may well be that what we are dealing with here is an experience native to kundalini.

Finally, what I found was that I could see the patterns when my eyes were slightly “defocused,” something that was hard to determine how to repeat simply because being far-sighted myself, it was hard for me to defocus naturally. I would say that there was a very slight defocusing of the eyes when this happened. I thought I would bring this experience forward for all of you psychonauts who are interested in the spectrum of experience possible with kundalini in specific but also how it may in fact be related to how dmt may be involved.

While it was known that the pineal gland in rats had dmt in them, it was not clear whether human pineal glands did the same production of dmt. In a recent study it was found that trace amounts were found in the human pineal gland as well as in the neurons of the brain also. That study is linked here:

https://www.psypost.org/2019/07/study-provides-evidence-that-dmt-is-produced-naturally-from-neurons-in-the-mammalian-brain-54051

UPDATE: the morning after preparing this post, I looked out my window and found the same hawk doing the same thing it had been doing the week before. And like last week, I found myself watching the hawk and discovered that the landscape began to change in ways that were consistent with the video that I mentioned that described the different dosage points of dmt. This time, I had two different visual effects. the first was one in which the landscape began to appear to break up into a series of points, like clumps of grass. These clumps appeared very regular and I wondered over how I could be seeing this the way that I was. Was it just that the landscape was that regular? The sun came out and highlighted the landscape and the effect became more pronounced. I looked away and the effect went away. Then, a moment later, while watching the hawk the landscape bloomed into this “chrysanthemum” effect like it did last week, but only for a moment. What this reminds me of is the effect that I sometimes get with certain types of lighting that put out a particular wavelength of light, like sodium lamps. It is almost as if the light is polarized and moves along certain lines somehow, which then highlights certain parts of the scene along with the light, producing a strange radial effect. Whatever is happening, it is not permanent and seems to be tied less to my eyes as it is my perception, which I sense involves inner sensing as well as physical sensing.

I will add that a couple of months ago I had a hawk feather show up at the bottom step of the deck where I live, right in my path. Who knows really. Messenger?

DMT is a material that breaks down very fast in the body. It is one reason why dmt trips are of such short duration (unless when using ayahuasca which has an added ingredient that slows the breakdown of dmt in the body, thus extending its “lifespan” in the brain and body). Is it possible that as the body releases dmt that we can have very short bursts of visual phenomenon and changes in consciousness? I will say for the record that for the forty minutes prior to seeing this this morning, I was in a meditative state with off the charts high bliss. Who knows for sure, but it seems worth paying attention to.

I don’t see anyone mentioning this so I will call out the elephant in the room. I have been seeing it since awakening made its rise and it is this; there are two ego’s. I noticed when I felt myself drop off the deep end of the pool of consciousness that there was this tightly focused awareness of self and then there was another form of ego, a kind of “superego” which was just the opposite of its counterpart. This form of ego was more broad, seemed much more mature, and unlike the small ego, which was like a genie in a bottle in its own cramped space, not much bothered this larger ego. It also felt more mature, more emotionally capable, and it could glimpse the larger things without being bowled over. Two egos? But who talks about there being two egos?

Concurrent with this awareness was also the awareness that the powers of the mind, more specifically the brain, were now more obvious to me. I felt the force of awareness of each part of this awakened consciousness in my body: I felt a concrete, linear, rational feeling energy on the right side of my body. I referred to it as “the man.” On the left side of my body I felt something completely different. I felt a presence in the energy in my body that was fluid, nonlinear, holistic, and emotionally intelligent. I began referring to this as “the woman.” It felt like a classic yin-yang situation. I felt this all the time, it was as if a bright light was shown down into my consciousness and into my physiology to highlight a quality I had not paid that much attention to. This was before I even knew what on earth had happened to me. i didn’t know that this was even called kundalini. I worried for a bit that I might have something wrong with me, like a brain tumor or something. Luckily, this concern didn’t last for long, but the awareness of how different everything was at that crossing over period in my life helped to provide clues into the nature of this phenomenon.

In those early days, I was free to simply observe. I noticed that whatever this thing was, it had an automatic quality to it. What I mean is that I was aware that I was caught up in a force that was now moving me along with or without my direct participation. There were concerns of possession, I will admit this was true…but this was also short-lived, thankfully. I was curious, eager to understand what on earth was happening to me. It was as if I had somehow crossed over some line of psychological inertia whereby I now had developed some kind of force in consciousness that was now running on automatic. One of these forces in the eddies and flows of my day to day was how I noticed how these two forces, the “man” and “woman” were beginning to merge together in a kind of union. I didn’t just feel this as a force in consciousness but I could feel it as a force in my body. My left and right side of my body had twin forces running in them that were now beginning to merge in the center line of my body, right along what felt was my spine. When they did this, it was when I wasn’t holding them back. They just did this naturally. It was a new novel effect I had never experienced before. When they merged together I would go into ecstasy. Imagine my surprise. It felt orgasmic and it felt like two forces were making love inside my consciousness.Instead of physical sex, this was a higher order version of what I knew in the physical. It felt extra-dimensional, tied to here and now but took me entirely out of it all at the same time. It was in these states where I felt a new consciousness emerge, it felt like another order of magnitude beyond what I had known. It also shared qualities with states I had known before all of this took place. Inspiration was one of them. As an artist, I had brushed up against this state before, it was the firestone that all artists seek and find it oddly elusive sometimes. Artists “seek” inspiration…..and we do whatever we can to find it, since it is the fuel that helps to bring forth new creations. In my new state I saw how two forces in my body and mind were merging to create a new synthesis, a new mind…..the Metamind. This fueled intense creative output and also personal transformation that was natural and happened automatically while at the same time to the degree that I allowed it to happen.

This Metamind was like turning a cosmic key in a cosmic lock. Each unlocked each other and fueled a new form of awareness. When this happened, I felt like I could also unlock knowing about just about anything. I had a lot of trouble with this notion at first. One side of my mind knew that what was happening was correct and completely on the mark while the other was skeptical. As time wore on, these experiences began to pile up. I took notes hoping to make sense of what was happening to me. Part of it felt impossible, another part said. “not so fast….hold on….watch….just you watch….” Over time, years, in fact, I would find that many of these experiences where I felt like I was reading the “secrets” of the universe had an odd habit of showing up in other writings. If I was trained on something in physics, there were theories that spelled out a large part of what I had seen earlier. How was this even possible?

All through this was the awareness that there was this left and right side in my body and awareness that was involved. I felt two kinds of awareness of self, two ego’s. I knew this was the case only because I felt it in such an obvious way. I began to consider that what I was experiencing was based in my physiology. I considered that these twins were connected to the two brains that we each have, two hemispheres that develop along two different lines to form the processing engine that we call the brain. We think of it as a whole, but there are two joined by a large cluster of nerve fibers called the corpus callosum. Was what I was feeling on the right side of my body, this flowing nonlinear form of my consciousness which I called the “woman” commensurate with the left hemisphere? Was this solid, concrete, and rational feeling part on my right side, the “man” the left hemisphere both reflecting themselves in a brighter or more obvious way in my awareness and my physiology? What’s more, when these two merged together, they created what I called back then “the child” and this, I would later discover was what the ancients called cosmic consciousness. My first realization that other people knew and wrote about this state was when I read the gnostic texts of early Christianity. It was an epiphany, a welcomed one, in which I finally realized that yes, there were people who had experienced this and I wasn’t just going around the bend. They spoke of the “left and the right” in a curiously similar way as I had experienced it. They spoke of the place of union within us, the bridal chamber, where the two become one. Somewhere, though, in the centuries that followed, this knowledge was lost, along with the keys to how to unlock it as the power of the tide of Orthodoxy took over the Christian world. That, though, is another story best saved for another time.

Was much of this being fueled by the fact that we have two brains? Was this man and woman the two hemispheres and how differently they develop in order to handle the broad range of possibility that we each have in consciousness? I sensed that this was entirely on the mark and I wondered if there was anyone out there who had done any work in the world of neuroanatomy that might provide clues. I didn’t have to look very far. I found a TED Talk by Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor who described how she had a stroke in the left brain one morning while getting ready for work. Having her left hemisphere shut down through hemorrhaging in her brain meant that the right brain was now running the show (mostly). What she experienced was very telling. She came away with the clear sense that she had begun to experience samadhi, which is the bliss that is encountered when we experience cosmic consciousness. She further described how she observed that it was the left brain that was like a linear processor while the right brain was a parallel processor, able to handle vast flows of information all at once. It was her right brain that provided her with the awareness of how everything is connected, a common awareness of nonduality and cosmic consciousness.

I was aware that how we use our brains that the left brain acts as if it is running the show. I saw this as common to all people of the earth, it was just how we have all developed, a tendency that has been in place for a very long time. What happens when you shut down that part of your mind so that your other mind can begin to express itself? Much like how women have been sidelined in our world, there was a microcosm of this happening inside each one of us. Was the left masculine serving to hold back the flood-tide of awareness that we think of as the feminine side of our consciousness? A few years later I remember reading a paper about how scientists had found that the left brain served as a brake against the right brain. Bingo. So the process of enlightenment was in large part an effort to quiet the mind so that the left brain, which deals with language and process based tasks and linear logic, is not as active. And as often happens when we are lucky, the right brain hums to life as its own capacities are felt perhaps for the first time in a meaningful and substantive way.

Is it any wonder, then, that the Hindu describe kundalini as “kundalinishakti”? Is it any wonder that in Hindu iconography this new form of being is illustrated as a man and woman split down the middle? It was all the same thing I had been experiencing, too, with the man and woman, and the birth of a new form of mind which I called the child. The early Christians called it Christ and at least at one time people were learning how to BE Christs. Similarly, there are other cultures that also describe this same phenomenon, all using their own cultural lenses with which to understand it.

In my experience, I kept receiving the admonishment not to read about what I was experiencing. I know this may sound strange at first, but this is just what happened. Except for nibbling around the edges of this topic and wanting very much to understand what had happened to me, there was this still voice within that told me to pay attention, to watch and observe it directly without seeing what others had to say about it. Only after a number of years after I had uncovered these early Christian texts on the subject did the voice within say it was okay to begin researching more widely. This was itself part of my own inner development and was part of a task which was part of a very long story that had to do with other lifetimes (involving how early texts were hidden away from view and from those who might destroy them). But as I began to search more widely, I found that so much of the literature is speaking to this left/right paradigm in fueling cosmic consciousness. For as new as it may seem to many of us, this has been something that has been experienced by many people down through time. Many wrote about it and when you understand the phenomenon well enough yourself, you can pick them out quite easily. Plato created a myth about the separation of the sexes where we once were both male and female, an echo of this primordial awareness of the two-in-one that we each are inside. And perhaps it is because of this twin nature that we each have that we have been so fascinated with the Other, the opposite polarity of our own sex (not for all, but for many of us), keeping us always seeking that other “part” of ourselves with which we are less acquainted with.

I found in my own development that there was a point where the left brained awareness of ego was beginning to become a problem. I had experienced the oft-described “contractions” of consciousness that is tied to the ego-mind. I saw how it was a literal bottle-neck in my awareness, and as time went on, the forces of a larger awareness began to push hard against how centrally installed this “little” ego awareness was in my consciousness. After a period of about two years, I kept coming up against a solid and hard resistance within myself that felt instinctive and hard to work with. What gives? Over time, and during an extended dark night of the soul that lasted about five very intense months, I found that I reached a point where the force of awakening finally disengaged this little ego from its front and center arrangement in my consciousness. This took time and happened through repeated rises of the energy which would come for me, bowling me over each time. I described it was feeling like the energy had become a 600 lb gorilla that would glower in the corner of the room, launching itself onto me until it wrestled me to the ground. Each time, I would resist this force, not even aware why I was even doing so. I was embarrassed; I was about as unsurrendered a person as there could be. Why was I resisting so much? Why couldn’t I just let go? It was what I knew, what I was familiar with. It was how I was raised. It was how everyone who I knew was. This thing, this mad gorilla, was trying to break me and turn me into something else.

Slowly, in steps, each time our gorilla came for me, I slowly softened. Maybe it was only after feeling like I had just been attacked and pinned did I finally cry uncle. But at the end of each of these “attacks” I began to see how the face of this force would completely change to my mind. Instead of being a threat, it became a bubbling and effusive force that would look out through its mysterious eyes and smile at me, still very much lying on top of me, but looking at me now with wonder and joy as I was also feeling the same. So it was in this way that I gave up the small ego. It was done piecemeal. I gradually got the memo and began to welcome the wrestling matches that would take place in silence. Eventually, I no longer even got attacked. It never was an attack. I was just seeing it all the wrong way. Over this time period, I learned that all I needed to do was to allow this new force in awareness to simply be. All of this was like one long tutorial, taught over and over until I learned to let go. And the day came, a very definite moment, when I finally got it. When I did, a curious thing happened; all thoughts ceased and it was like I had punched through a layer of atmosphere that was dense and I was free. I felt for the first time an enduring silence in the mind. With it came a peace and a presence. I had felt both of these things before, in fact I had felt them hundreds, perhaps thousands of times right from the beginning of awakening, but I always did so as a visitor. I could visit those places but my old habituated consciousness would win over in the end, sending me back to where I had been before. Awake, full of energy, intense and alive, but still in an old mode of being all at the same time. This was a process.

What took place once this silence emerged or was given space to exist in a more consistent way, was itself a bit of a challenge. I still had to be in the world and use old modes of focus just to get through my day in a way that would keep me anchored in my physical life. I learned to balance and to use different modes of consciousness like a child would learn to use its body to walk or to learn to talk. I felt like I was learning how to be a new human all over again. I found that I could be very forgetful. I might forget from one moment to the next what I had only moments before been thinking about. While this might not seem strange to you, this was happening all the time to me. I would go through self-checkout at the market and forget that I had just seconds before gotten cash back from the machine. It was left, a twenty dollar bill spit out by the machine, for the next person in line to notice it was there. But at the same time it was this lack of focus that also allowed me access to a field of being that was remarkable and felt like freedom. This process of learning to balance these tow states was itself gradual as I felt my way around things. What I found so hard to believe was how events would conspire to keep me in the flow of things. I had trouble focusing, I would forget about meetings, but they always worked out. Someone would call to cancel because something came up, or something else in my life would put me at just the right place at just the right time. It all looked so accidental and purposeful all at once. It is hard to explain how many times I had blanked on something only to have things work out perfectly. After a while it was hard to see how this was all working just by accident. It felt and looked like there was some force alive in the physical, a kind of conscious thread whose material I was unaware of being there that would look out after me as I floated in a kind of inner space of the numinous, as if time itself had been cancelled and I simply was there….unthinking, unable sometimes to think in the old way sometimes unable to navigate in the old ways that I had before. Someone might call out of the blue asking for an appointment at the studio minutes before I realized, I already had an appointment that was going to happen in minutes. Yes, I began to rely heavily on my calendar on my phone to write it all down to prompt me, but even this was hard to do sometimes because of how quickly I would shift into no-time and no-thought. I know that this all sounds hard to imagine, but it was my world for a good while. And yet everything worked out. I hardly ever wound up in a situation where I was able to completely forget something, not without the poking and prodding from the universe itself. It was like tumbling and falling from a great height only to land always on my feet. No one caught on to just how “out there” I was. Krishnamurti described this as his “declutched” state where he could not access normal thought and often felt lost in this new state of mind. It is a necessary step along the way to reaching a larger synthesis of mind and being where nothing is set aside, discounted or left behind. This is the path to being a fuller being here on earth and we have been wrestling with this for a long time. This relates, I think, to how we can develop these two powers of mid and learn organically how to balance the two, which is itself a process we call embodiment.

All through this, though, was the awareness of the two focuses in my mind, my brain. I had this incredibly large and diffuse awareness of ego that I sensed was from the right brain while there was this incredibly cramped quarters of the ego that was in my left brain. When I entered into that left-brained ego, it was like putting on blinders. I seemed to see everything in such microscopic detail that I completely lost the wave of cosmic mind. On the other hand, when I was so “out there” with my right-brained ego, I was swimming in a vast sea.

I have come to see these two forms of awareness and focus to be just that, two focuses. My job has been to marry them, not toss them out completely. The next stage has been to marry them so that there is no difference between the two. I see them as being like two parts of a cone of being; one side of the cone comes to a point for laser-like focus, and then its expands outward to where its widest point becomes the narrowest point of the other focus or hemisphere, the right brain. From there, this cone expands outward, perhaps to infinity. It doesn’t have the laser focus and relies on that part of the brain to make sense of some of what it is seeing and experiencing. But in the same way, the left brain is completely unable to grasp the larger more broader realm that the right brain seem so adept at. One is a particle, one is a wave. One is masculine, one is feminine. Neither can do much alone, both achieve a new synthesis when brought into harmony with the other.

So all of this talk of the ego being an illusion is to me beside the point. So many who want to say that it isn’t real and for us to just chuck it out. I find all of it hilarious and sad. This is the left brain at work. It sounds pretty impressive, after all, so many teachers have prescribed doing this for ages. But all of them have been men and when I hear those men talk I hear a voice that shows no sign of being all that aware of the bigger picture that the inner “feminine” brings to all of us, regardless of our physical sex. The way that they explain it, describe it, it is all very logic-driven and it also lacks substance in the bigger picture. There is talk of “who is the “I” that is experiencing this?” It is all to me like one big tail-chasing game. The “I” is here for a purpose, use it and understand it better, then perhaps you will see that this is not merely an anomaly. When I see these men speaking about this “I” that is pure illusion, I also find that most of them have not had a single experience with a past life. In fact, the reality of a past life itself would disprove such notions as severely limited because it shows how the “I” persists from lifetime to lifetime and that while we are the universe, we are also given awareness of the “I” in order to allow us to look out with our own perspective and turn of mind on that universe, the all. And why would these need to be contradictory or mutually exclusive? There is the doer and there is the knower. There is the part that is at rest and the part that changes and transforms and works with the stuff of this world in order to work through its own stuff. To me, this talk of no “I” is a clever way of bypassing the work that you are here to do. And who knows, really, perhaps resting on the cosmic sandbar of the belief in no “I” might be a necessary step in people’s evolution before stepping out into the great ocean of consciousness where both I and All are commensurate with one another, a paradox to be embraced, two focuses to be fused into a new Metamind of great wisdom and understanding….compassion, even.

A while back I wrote this piece called, “I Cannot Ride That Neoadvaita Train” in which I linked to a wonderful video of a woman in India who pointed out how useless it is to try and make the kinds of distinctions so many teachers, all male, make about this issue with the “I.” I found it incredibly refreshing and meshing with my experience through all of this. Why toss it out, why not work with it? Please show me a single person who has gotten ride of ego. Name me one. I will wait. “That is because of how pernicious our consciousness is in the production of a false-self!” they explain. But perhaps it is only because we have always had this “I” because it serves a unique purpose here in our development. Is it all that there is? No. It is a part. But we are a whole of parts working as one and yet we are still also those parts. Small ego, big ego, emotional self, mental or intellectual self, the body, the light body, all make up the “koshas” which are aspects of our whole being. All can be seen as parts by the rational mind, but they all work together as a whole. And isn’t every single atom in the universe like this? Each goes to make up larger parts than themselves, creating or adding to what we see as the seemingly infinite physical cosmos where galaxies swirl in the distant reaches of space? And yet, we also know and can sense how all of this is also connected, delicately wedded together in a masterful creation that isn’t just our desire to project upon it or to imagine that it is so, but that it offers up its secrets to reveal how complex and amazing all of creation is in how it is indeed connected and engaged in a cooperative experiment that is our world. And this world is all energy, and all of this is itself a play of how energy recreates a world some call illusion but that my wise inner feminine knows is creation. It is creation because at every point we see these sacred-two at work inside the atom as “matched pairs” as the physicists theorize, as the opposites which are present at every dimensional level of our existence from small to large. This is also at work in your body in your two brains and it also informs your relationships, especially the intimate ones. Why do we accept it as fact in our world but a fallacy in our consciousness? Is consciousness itself not energy, too?

Further, without seeing the usefulness and need for the “I” I insist that it may not even be possible to get to the place where you can supercede your own local awareness to get to that place where you can see all of this for what it is. Yes, there have been great teachers, but they were all human, and while they all climbed great mountains within themselves, they only climbed so far. They seemed to have gone far by normal standards, but there is much more beyond what they might have thought were the highest heights that still remains to be mastered. I am reminded of how the earliest memory tied to my life today was how I came to choose my parents. I wasn’t physical yet. It is perhaps one of the greatest gifts I gave myself, which was the ability to remember this event. I was a point of awareness that had no physical body. I was buoyant and free, floating above the Ponderosa pines that were planted in near rows like a cathedral there in Northern Florida. I saw the two people who would be my parents lying on a blanket on the forest floor. This memory is the most vivid and crisp of any memory that I have to date. It exists, it seems, both in my brain and in my mind, something recalled from the past and from before my body was itself alive. It is one of many proofs that the “I” is no illusion or some kind of mistake in our cognition. It is not some aberration, but is instead a very natural part of consciousness despite what form that consciousness might take. While I was given proofs like this, it seems that the world of others are waiting for the day when this comes into view for them.

This “I” is composed of two ends of a very larger, perhaps infinite spectrum of awareness that we call ego. One is ego and one is superego. It is the same part of ego that teachers have pointed out are the parts of us that continue to exist even when we reach such lofty states as cosmic mind. Taisen Deshimaru the Zen master pointed out that as we touch cosmic mind that there is still a higher order form of “I” that is always there. There is always the awareness of self through all of this, even when swimming in this sea of the All, there is always the self.

Swami Rama who was a man who developed a high level of consciousness has explained that without ego you would be forced to feel and experience everything in your local environment like a giant rush of water. Your senses would be swept away as your nonlocal consciousness would be aware of everything taking place around you from the atoms in the air to your neighbor stubbing their toe. The ego, he explained, serves as an important filter that you need while in the body. His many talks have been preserved on Youtube where you can find them. I found in his talks the awareness of how useless it is to try and rid oneself of ego, but to learn how to work with it differently, in what I consider a more natural and organic way. His life itself is a fascinating one and it is all preserved online if you wish to look.

As I walked up the road at dusk in 2008 on May 17th, I found myself suddenly without that filter, or without much of it in place. In that instant I was aware of every single thing down to the smallest detail from the mist in the field, the leaves on the trees, to the eddies in the water flowing in the creek below. What’s more, I was aware of the atoms in the stones and the life swimming in that creek. It had the effect of unbalancing me, making me feel like the water from a fire hose was flowing through a garden hose. It taught me one thing and initiated another; I needed the ego but I needed a new awareness of what ego can do for us as physical creatures here on earth. Ego was part of it, but it is not the whole story.

Ego can make us feel very small, but it can also show us how to be larger, how to grow, and a better way to be. The way we are now in general as a species reflects mostly the small ego, and this is a problem if you want to know more. There waits for you a new synthesis of mind that is as much about the spin of electrons as it does the duality and unity of the self. It is all-in-one in my experience, and it waits for everyone for when they get to that place. Kundalini is not a goddess, it is a fusion of our polarities. That alone is what lends potency to the experience, for those two poles are each powerless without the other because they are two-in-one. It is the addition of the right brain, that expansive side of us, the feminine goddess side, that seems to activate kundalini. It is only this way because we are only using one side up until that time comes when kundalini activates. yes there seems to be the addition of “her” but it is in her union with her compliment that moves the cosmic force we call kundalini so that our energy body is transformed. We need both sides of the brain to make full sense of this. And yes, it is the feminine aspect in consciousness that is the larger more expansive one, but what she lacks, the more masculine part has. The masculine has made itself small so it can show to the feminine side that which it needs in order to create. She alone cannot do it no matter how hard she tries. Nor can the masculine, either. He might think that he can, but it always winds up dry and lifeless, like those men who talk about ego and about a great may other things that hold people in the hypnosis of the trap of rational thought. You need both. The two walk hand in hand, and the more aware you are of this, the more aware you are of your fuller nature as a being on this earth. Yes, you can leave ego alone and experience something majestic. You can learn to leave it alone so that you are not a slave to it. This is not the same as destroying ego. You remove the dependence upon that part of you that is ego. It can become like one tool in a toolbox, one tool among many. Pull it out when you need to, use it, it can be very useful and even helpful for some things, but a screw driver does not do the job of a wrench. Ego, then, is like the screw driver that is constantly being pulled out of the toolbox each time. You can let it be, you can use a wrench instead. And when you do use the ego, you have two parts to it that correspond to how each of the hemispheres of the brain have developed seemingly separately but are made to work together to help form a new synthesis of mind. Two ego forms can merge and work together peacefully and in context with a larger whole. All ego death is, is losing the reliance on ego. Ego does not go forever away. You must learn to work with it but not be its slave, that is all.

We often think here that somehow human consciousness is itself a unique quantity. We speak about humans as unique in the world, that special species that has risen up to be “above” all other life forms. I am here to tell you that experience has shown me that we don’t live in a world where the physical universe has offered up unique differences in consciousness because of a lucky roll of the dice or an evolutionary effect that has managed to somehow provided more goods to one species over another. While it is true on the surface that different life forms show different capacities physically, the root of what drives all of this is not different. I have seen instead that everything has consciousness and that at least right now in our technological development, consciousness is ideal for exploring the field of consciousness that exists in other life forms. I will add that even matter itself, the very atoms, are composed of units of consciousness that are part of the divine drama of consciousness turning itself into matter (which I will touch on later).

So far, I have never experienced a life form through remote viewing or conscious probing or scanning where that consciousness was fundamentally different from my own. There were differences in how the energy of consciousness might be used in small ways, but never, not even once, in larger more significant over-arching ways. Since I am always looking for evidence for my many experiments into the realm of the numinous, into studying consciousness, I have found that I have gotten some tantalizing clues that seem to show me that consciousness really isn’t that different between us and, say, plants. It has struck me how similarly plants feel, how vividly animals feel emotion and express themselves in not too different ways than we do. While the differences may seem broad, if you go to the root of every consciousness be it atom or cell or species, there is the very same sense of feeling-based awareness. In fact, I suspect that we need this feeling-based awareness in order to properly interact with the matrix of matter that is itself consciousness that has transformed itself cleverly into what we call matter.

I have been reading the human energy field since I was 18 years old. It has taught me that our thoughts and feelings are composed of energy, just like physical matter is. As a result, what we normally think of as nonphysical consciousness has a basis in physics, the study of the physical world. If thoughts and feelings are energy, which they certainly are (even if you go by the purely mechanistic view of thoughts being electrical activity in the brain) then it begins to make sense that we can study this phenomenon (which of course we do through EEG’s and other measurement methods). In my case, I was keen to study the results of my ability to read the human aura. I have long since determined that what I was seeing was not somehow a fabrication of an imagined result, but that I was able to accurately see the fields of awareness of thoughts and feelings as well as the physical health state of a person at a glance. I have been able to accurately see illness in the body, pain, as well as see images of the thoughts of people, which for me have shown up as vivid images in the auric field. I have seen mental illness expressed in specific ways, too. What’s more, I have found that built into this sense was the capacity to see the images before the person spoke them, which was itself very telling to me that I was indeed on to something. I have been able to see the auric field of a person move first and then I have seen how the physical body would move into the exact location as the aura field had moved. I saw a professor move his auric arm into a new position while his right hand a few seconds later went into that same position. I have seen this effect many times, and it has all suggested to me that indeed, we think first and then seconds later, follow our thoughts through physical action. It has been this lag that has shown me how it was impossible for me to have simply guessed these movements to have happened in the way that they did.

A part of this inner sensing that the brain interprets into vivid imagery which we call the aura or human energy field, is that we cannot actually see this energy with our eyes. Speaking with a physiological psychologist, I asked if it was possible for the brain to receive and interpret data not coming from the physical senses, in putting it into a sensory portion of the brain, in say, vision. He said without hesitation, “Absolutely.”I would go one further to say that all psychic senses use this same kind of translation, using the brain as a faithful translator of inner sensory information. For those of you who have had experience with clairsentience for example, you can perhaps begin to realize how developed this “translational” ability is in the brain….as if it was designed to do this (which I suspect it is).

A number of years ago while standing outside at nighttime, I was standing by a small maple tree whose tip extended upwards of about 15 feet above me. I noticed that I was able to see energy, auric field type energy, flowing from the tree. I had never seen this before and I was interested in what on earth was going on. I saw these brilliant bits of energy that expressed themselves as vivid sparks of energy, small balls of energy that were traveling up the trunk of the tree and out through its branches. These bits of auric energy continued upward, leaving the tree as they floated upwards like sparks into the sky. As I watched I was aware that what was happening was two-fold: the energy in the tree was balancing itself as it was doing what we think of as dreaming. One of the facets of reading fields is that there is always a deeper understanding of the phenomenon that is being viewed (because it is an inner sense). In the same way that pollen and seeds are dispersed so too does its consciousness energy disperse even though the individual consciousness is never lessened itself.

A few years later, on the advice of a friend, I was harvesting some flowers at night from some plants near my studio in order to make flower essences. At the time, the sky was overcast and it was almost completely dark. I had to walk up to where I knew the flowers were, and as I did so, I noticed something interesting. As I moved along where the flowers were growing, my hands skimming over their tops (I was like Hellen Keller at this point because there was so little light that I had to feel my way around) I noticed that at a certain point the quality of the energy of the flowers changed abruptly. In fact, the change was rather noticeable. It felt like one section of the plants had a more masculine feeling while another section of the same group felt feminine. I moved my hands over them again and got the same result. This was curious, I thought. Was there a difference between what seemed to be the same stand of flowers?

The next day I went out to where these wildflowers were. They were a very small flower, hard to even see even in daylight and as I walked over to them I noticed that I was standing in about the same place as I had the night before. As I looked at them, I noticed that at the point where I felt the plants had changed their energy, expressed at what felt like masculine and then feminine, I saw that the flowers changed color. There were two different varieties present. On one side, they were a pale blue and on the other side, a light yellow. Was I able to see the colors of these flowers? I had no memory of being able to do so in the dark. Was I perhaps picking up on other smaller clues at the edges of my own physical senses in the darkness? I suppose it could be possible. However, with as strong a result as I was getting with my inner senses, I have my doubts that this was all just interpreting something from bits and scraps of sensory data.

A few years ago while watching a TED Talk, I came across a talk by a researcher who described how plants that have the ability to pull in their leaves when brushed against, showed that these plants have the ability t learn. They dropped the plants in their planters from a height over and over, providing time for the plant’s systems to recover so the effect could be repeated. What she found was that after the sixth time this drop was completed, the plants stopped responding to this stimulus. They had learned, she contended, that this stimuli was not a danger to them. I would post this video now for your reference but in searching for it, it did not come up through my searches in preparing this article. Other research has shown that plants communicate and that they may have emotional responses. I can recall reading in East West Journal as a child how in the early 70’s scientists published the results of an experiment where they hooked up a house plant to a lie detector and dropped live shrimp into boiling water from across the room. The electrical activity on the lie detector, that the plant put out during this experiment, was described as a “scream.” The researcher who conducted these tests was named Cleve Backster.

Backster and his collaborators went on to hook up polygraph machines to dozens of plants, including lettuces, onions, oranges, and bananas. He claimed that plants reacted to the thoughts (good or ill) of humans in close proximity and, in the case of humans familiar to them, over a great distance. In one experiment designed to test plant memory, Backster found that a plant that had witnessed the murder (by stomping) of another plant could pick out the killer from a lineup of six suspects, registering a surge of electrical activity when the murderer was brought before it. Backster’s plants also displayed a strong aversion to interspecies violence. Some had a stressful response when an egg was cracked in their presence, or when live shrimp were dropped into boiling water, an experiment that Backster wrote up for the International Journal of Parapsychology, in 1968.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2013/12/23/the-intelligent-plant

The aboriginal people in the Yucatan Peninsula when asked how they had managed to find plants with the same physical chemistry told Terrence McKenna that the plants themselves told them. When Terrance asked how this was achieved, they took him into a ceremony where a form of DMT was used. Using DMT, they were able to speak to the plants, what they described were the spirits of the plants. Similarly, those who have taken ayahuasca have described experiences where they encounter the spirit of the plant, which helps them in healing psychological problems that they have. Native Americans have described how they have communicated with trees for ages, so this awareness is nothing new. It seems that science is just now beginning to catch up with experiments that are just beginning, for the Western world, to unravel the inner life of plants and how they exhibit evidence of sentience. I think that the mainstream is late to the party.

So what gives? Belief, that’s what. Most of us have been taught that the only real thinking and feeling being on this planet is the human. There has even been the theory (or belief) that other mammals, like cows, don’t feel pain like we do, something that we now clearly know is not the case at all. Even in less “sophisticated” life forms we see reactions to pain and stress that are hard to deny or ignore. I think we do this in order to gloss over the violence that we do to these other life forms by making the assumption that without a nervous system there is no way for a living thing to feel pain or emotion. Saying and believing this makes us feel better, it makes us feel like we are off the hook. As time goes by and more work is done in this field I think we will see a world that is alive with sentience, awareness, and consciousness. Investigation into the world of plants is beginning to show that a central nervous system or brain is necessary for expressing (and our measuring) sentience.

The great thing that all of this suggests to me is that we can access these other consciousnesses with our own consciousness. Consciousness is a kind of “technology” that is perfectly suited for understanding and learning more if you learn how to use it in that way. The only thing that stands in your way is your own bias or belief that it could never possibly be true. In my experiments into remote viewing I was able to see how matter is formed at the subatomic scale. In this amazing experience, I saw how particles, which had no mass, would appear as if on cue within the form of a subatomic particle and then merge with another complimentary particle of opposite charge in order to create the appearance of physicality at the subatomic level. Now this was incredible to see and impossible to believe at first. But when I began doing some research into this experience, I found that there were theoretical physicists who were describing much the same thing. They described how matter is formed through the interaction of “matched pairs” of energetic particles that created the phenomenon of matter. The only thing missing from their theory was the presence of particles that were themselves aware (which was what I saw). When I first experienced this amazing result the first few times that I tried it, the effect was revolutionary. I wanted to run out into the street and ask people, “Have you seen this???” What I found in my research was that there was a whole group of physicists who had found that at the base of matter at the quantum level, was consciousness. If you don’t know what they were on about, then study what is called “The Measurement Problem” and you will be holding the tail of the cosmic tiger. It is no surprise that so many people in consciousness studies often quote material from these physicists who belonged to a branch of research called Quantum Mechanics. What I would say is that initially, those scientists found some amazing things and then…..nothing. It wasn’t carried much further. Some of its members did go on to do work in the field of consciousness studies, but it was a movement that seemed to die on the vine in the sense that there wasn’t a new generation of physicists who sought to then use their own consciousness to probe into what this facet of matter being conscious might actually mean in a larger more expanded understanding. This is most likely because the discoveries of those physicists like Bohm, Plank, and Heisenberg strained the belief systems of people at the time and we all collectively retreated into our familiar beliefs that the world really is just a bunch of atoms that as Alfred North Whitehead once asked,”blindly run.”

What this does for me is it shows or opens up a door of awareness that there is still much to learn and to know about our world. Consciousness, for me, is a tool that we can indeed use for understanding what science is not ready yet to examine. You can learn how to use it to do this probing and exploration. One of the most easy ways to begin doing this is through remote viewing. You can read up on how it is done and then conduct experiments for yourself in a completely blind environment. You might need a friend who can go to a location, perhaps photograph what they see and experience, and then report back once you have written down your impressions. This is how remote viewing works, and while in the beginning it might be useful for you to do experiments like the one I just described, as you see the results of your experiments bear fruit, you can move into areas where it is harder for you to confirm what it is you are viewing (like consciousness of other life forms for example). It is also something that the ancients have been doing for a very long time. In the words of the Sutra of Pentenjali, when one attains to a certain level of awareness in consciousness, a person so endowed can look at the stars and know their composition, can look at a person and know their secrets and their thoughts.This is so because consciousness itself is not limited in the way that we think that it is. That goes for plants and the so-called “lower” animals. And I think that what this examination can do is to begin to show those who are curious and courageous enough how truly amazing this world is.

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