Here’s a question from a reader about the effect of eating, or not eating, on the flow of Kundalini and the spiritual process.
Q: Diet seems a big big part of my awakening. For the past 5 years I’ve practiced a mostly raw vegan, fruit based diet… now mostly just doing mono meals of fruit.
It seems like there is always this energy in my body, and spine, and its always trying to push through the spine and it seems open it up or break through knots in the spine… But this really really happens when I am not eating… If I fast for a day, the energy just automatically begins to rise through and push through knots… can be kinda painful, or not so painful but uncomfortable, and various emotions and icky mindstates can come up cause of this process.
But once it has pushed through it feels like my spine is more open , knots removed, the mind way more relaxed and open and untethered and I gain access to all kinds of mental absorptions and various siddhis. Now here is the thing… this energy never really goes through a full clearing process when I’m just grazing during the day… so to try and accommodate this energy while also eating, cause I think I still need food. I have in the past used two meals a day, usually eating a big fruit meal in the morning, then not eating till evening… The space during the day where the stomach is empty allows the energy to do its pushing through and clearing and opening for the day. Then when I feel like the process has sort of reached a completion for that day, I would eat my evening meal.
When following this way of eating the kundalini would clearly start to become more active, and I was living in constant ecstatic bliss.
So it seems for my journey food is a major inhibitor… If I’m doing the two meals a day scheme, great things happen, but if I’m not it seems like I encounter issues with the energy that is always trying to push through. Anyways just seeing what you think of this… I have a sort of fear of losing too much weight as I’m fairly slim , but healthy … I have a desire to experiment and see where this goes by committing to eating in the broken up periods , as life is clearly better.
I’m curious, is kundalini directly related to being able to sustain oneself on less food ? I have also had strong experiences of Amrita, the substance that drips from the space above the soft pallet, and wondering if this has anything to do with living more on light?
A: I share this same experience.
Namely, that the force-energy-Kundalini can be slowed or inhibited by using food. For me, it wasn’t how much I ate or even what I ate, it was all about frequency. I ate once a day, mid-day and that allowed my body a full 24 hours between digestive activity. Furthermore, eating mid-day allowed me to have all night on EMPTY, and we do a great deal of processing while we sleep. From your comments, I think you will understand what I mean when I refer to the feeling of EMPTY and how that seems to turn up the volume on Kundalini flow.
Now, when we say it impedes Kundalini, that sounds like a bad thing, but not necessarily. It’s useful to be able to modulate this process. Not everyone needs or can handle the full force of this vibrant life energy. There is nothing inherently safe or good about Kundalini. It’s powerful and should be respected. It is possible for a person to blow out their circuits or end up temporarily becoming the spiritual equivalent of an autistic savant, though it doesn’t sound like you are in danger of that. It sounds like you are aware of the nuances and able to balance the desire to just let it rip with the wisdom of the body, keeping in touch with its requirements.
Kundalini reminds me of being in labor. There is a force, that force has its own intelligence and objective and it is going in one direction only. There is nothing you can do about it once it is initiated. At that point, you are not “in control”, just as the surfer is not in control of the wave. But you can use skill and wisdom to surf the waves. In my experience, the first few years after awakening were a crazy Kundalini ride. It was extremely powerful, constantly upgrading my circuitry. It’s kind of like going from dail up to T-1, etc. The more upgraded your circuits are, the more powerful and refined energy you are capable of running. And in my experience, Kundalini does just that.
Repeatedly. The first few years of upgrades were so intense, and then I got used to the energy running and I kind of reached a place of stable flow. Then the next wave of upgrades was initiated, but I’ve become used to it and it just doesn’t feel that dramatic anymore. As far as I can tell, this is ongoing. The plateau periods are very important for integration. It’s a time to bring that intense and expanded energy and awareness all the way into the body and into the mundane life and ground it. Grounding it means letting it permeate everything in life, bringing it fully into life so that it’s not just a spiritual experience. You imbue every aspect of your life with it. Otherwise you run the risk of being a floaty spiritual weirdo. Or having crazy Kundalini that isn’t harnessed in your system, but instead spills out from you all over the place.
Since you feel you still require food, please do eat. But you can experiment and see what works best for you at this time. A few things that come to mind:
1) Fast on the weekends. I’m assuming you work in such a way that you have a couple of days off every week.
2) Since you are eating two meals of predominantly fruit every day, try to go to one, mid-day or in the morning. Eat a larger or more substantial meal, but only once a day. See if having 24 hours of EMPTY between meals is sufficient.
3) If eating only once a day causes you to lose weight, then try eating the two meals, only blend them. Blending is like predigesting, so your body is a little less burdened with the food and can process it more easily. Or, you can eat your morning meal normally and blend your evening one. I think you will find being EMPTY at night is a big help.
So, what’s this EMPTY thing about? My experience is that when your organs are no longer pressed into digesting food, they have a secondary purpose. I can’t say what they do exactly, but my experience is that whatever these secondary duties are, they are supportive to the spiritual process and they only get activated when you’ve gone a certain amount of time without requiring their digestive functions. I could speculate and come up with a plausible sounding hypothesis as to what is really going on, but I don’t think it is that important. If you get into a one meal a day rhythm, tune in and see if you notice that your digestive organs start doing something else once they’ve been quiescent for long enough. Or, if you fast on the weekends, you might experience it also.
I did not experience emotional residue being dislodged in the Kundalini upgrades, but I hear that is common. The important thing is to flow through it and not get stuck in the narrative. I’m sure you have your own set of activities you find helpful in releasing the yucky mind states. Breathing, being in nature, swimming in the ocean or natural water, even taking a bath before bed in epsom salts is useful. Singing, dancing, chanting, gardening, playing with the dog…there are many, many joyful, nurturing ways to keep that energy flowing and releasing. I love motion, so I jump on the motorbike and chant mantras into everything I see while I’m driving. Do what works for you.
All of this advice up to now was for you, the person who asked this question. These answers will not be appropriate or useful for everyone because not everyone will experience Kundalini in the same way. In fact, I’ll bet there are people who burn calories like mad and need to double their intake of food during this process. Everyone is different and there is nothing to indicate that Kundalini activation and the ongoing process of upgrades causes everyone to become inedic. Everyone is different, and even the same person has different bodily needs at different stages.
I know a lot of people like to talk about not eating as living on light or prana. I don’t have any feeling that I live on light or prana or anything else. I’m just living. I don’t know how it works, but I’ve ceased to even think about it in terms of living on something, whether that something is a plate of nachos or something refined and invisible like prana. I have also had experiences of amrita. Lovely stuff! But at this point my experience is that I’m just living. I really like the sun, and when I’m sitting in it I often feel like I’m eating it. But I also lived in Scotland for a while and the winter is zero sun, and even the summer has barely any sun. Even in the dead of winter, in the snow, I was just fine without food. Am I the only one who has no sense of something outside of me being the source of my nourishment? I don’t feel like I’m plugging into some cosmic battery, or sipping the nectar of life or whatever.
Whatever you decide to try during your Kundalini upgrade period, just keep in touch with your body. Make sure it is not losing condition, that you are not dropping weight, that you are remembering to drink enough. Even though that powerful energy is pushing upward, it’s important to build in practices and activities on a daily basis to stay grounded. More is not always better, faster is not always better. Cooperate and coordinate with the Kundalini energy, and use your wisdom and skill to surf it rather than just getting tumbled in the waves. Kundalini can do crazy things to your nervous and adrenal systems, so build in plenty of activities that are calming and soothing to the nerves. Remove yourself from stressful people or situations as much as possible. Give yourself time to be alone. Get plenty of rest, even if you don’t sleep. Drink plenty of clean water. Stretch. Get massages or reflexology. Laugh.
Good luck to you, and enjoy the ride.