An interesting take on Kundalini

I enjoy listening to the teacher who calls herself Maharishikaa. She’s an iconoclast who claims to offer a new teaching that is better in some ways than traditional ones: surrender (“bend down”) to the soul. The soul, she says, is the inner “impulse” that tells us what we should do.

I don’t know if this is really a new teaching but I’ve never run across this exact idea before. That inner “impulse” — I think I know what she means, I often rely on it to tell me whether something I just said is true or false — but I don’t recall ever having heard anyone describe it before. She has put it at the center of her sadhana.

That “impulse” is easy to surrender to because it’s a tangible thing, and it’s an effective thing to surrender to because it’s holy.

(Here’s a pretentious thought: Perhaps the mind has partial access to attributes of the Self through particular phenomena. For example, it glimpses ananda through love. And perhaps it glimpses the conative aspect through this “soul” that Maharishikaa points to. Many realizers would probably deny that the Self has a conative aspect but is this true?)

I’m writing about Maharishikaa today because I want to link to a satsang conversation of hers about Kundalini problems.

In this talk she says (I paraphrase), “Surrender to Kundalini. Don’t try to wake her. She’s already awake. She knows better than you what to do. You don’t have to stir her up. You are likely to annoy her and cause problems.”

I did the exact opposite of what she recommends with wonderful results, and friends of mine have done the same. And yet, in a general way, I find myself agreeing with her. This is not as paradoxical as it sounds because I did the opposite of what she recommends only once, and I think I did it under divine guidance. After that I simply noticed and watched and waited. Which I suppose is a kind of surrender.

Anybody want to comment?

8 thoughts to “An interesting take on Kundalini”

  1. Who wants to wake the kundalini?
    It either comes or it doesn’t.
    I “personally” am sick and tired of it (;

    I sometimes feel that is a dramatic response to new data. And other times I feel its fear. Or a “no way” reaction from the body. Or energy moving or consciousness moving.

    But I wouldn’t bust my head over it. It’s there until it isn’t. We have no saying in the matter because we don’t exist. Maybe that’s the surrender concept that she was reffering to..

  2. Freddie, it’s so nice to see new posts on your blog. Your post got me to check Preeti’s website out and hear some of her teachings. Very fascinating indeed. May I ask how you got to know about her? Why do you enjoy listening to her?

    I particularly like this video of hers: https://youtu.be/uti6MqA_dPQ
    Specifically, what it means to be ‘self-realized’. In it she says, there isn’t a step function of before self-realized and after self-realized. It reminded me of your comment from a few weeks ago where you said you didn’t think you were self-realized. What does self-realization mean to you? what do you imagine it to be?

    Some more thoughts that her website and her videos generated in my mind:
    1. One ‘idea’ I realized I have of gurus/self-realized beings is that they aren’t trying to sell you something. Ideally, they are making their living off of something else and not spirituality. So whenever I see someone charging for their time, or selling anything related to spirituality – it gives me a sense of doubt. So that came up here as well (she sells jewelery/art inspired from her learnings). I also found your friend Padme (who i discovered through your blogs) to be quite joyful to hear and meaningful but she too charges for consultation/’shaktipat’ etc. Part of me thinks that perhaps that too is an idea (that gurus need to be a certain way) that needs to be shed (Ed Muzika writes about this in his book. Him too I discovered from your posts on realization.org). As I’m writing this – I can’t help but express more gratitude to you as it was your words that took me to new understandings through written/spoken words of others.

    2. Why does she feel the need to brand everything on her website (the title Maharishika, her name, all the youtube videos look a certain way etc). It generates again a spec of a doubt. On this aspect, I am currently reading ‘Perfect Brilliant Stillness’ – which is in stark contrast (Similar to michael langford as well) who de-emphasize their own identity (or however you might call it after self-realization) in favor of the content/message/teaching. Again – I do realize this is my own belief about how teachers/gurus are supposed to be and this may just be a flaw.

    1. Hi Metta,

      I’m going to write the “part 2” post soon! 🙂

      Freddie, it’s so nice to see new posts on your blog.

      Thank you, I’m happy to know you think so.

      May I ask how you got to know about her?

      I don’t remember but I probably saw a link to one of her videos somewhere.

      Why do you enjoy listening to her?

      Mainly because I like her voice, both the way it sounds and the kindness. The way I listen to her is more like listening to music than to a philosophical discourse. Who cares if a violin has the right ideas. 🙂

      What does self-realization mean to you?

      Nowadays I use Jan Esmann’s definition of “basic” Self-realization which is (I paraphrase) the permanent end of identification, which comes about, he says, because of the permanent end of the ‘I’ that imagines it is the ego. But for me — what I want, what motivates me — Self-realization has always meant “Ramana’s state” which is, I think, more than basic Self-realization.

      what do you imagine it to be?

      I imagine basic realization, in its pure form, to be what Steven Norquist describes in his book “Haunted Universe” or what David Carse means when he says “there’s nobody home.” But if I ever get basic realization I don’t think I will get it in its pure form (I don’t think Carse did either) because I’ve spent years noticing and enjoying Shakti and love. (It seems a little odd to capitalize Shakti but not love. Isn’t love also a name of God?)

      Ideally, they are making their living off of something else and not spirituality. So whenever I see someone charging for their time, or selling anything related to spirituality – it gives me a sense of doubt.

      I’m not sure whether this makes me doubt their suitability as teachers. But I don’t like it. I’m not saying it’s wrong but there’s a lack of reverence. For me, spiritual instruction is holy, and I don’t like to mix it with business. Perhaps George will jump in here and remind me that instruction and money are both God. If he does he will be perfectly correct. And yet it feels ugly to me. Not wrong, but aesthetically distasteful, like a lousy recipe or mismatched clothes.

      I like what Ramana did. Everyone could enter his ashram, take meals, have his darshan (in his case, that meant transmission) — always for free and without being asked for donations.

      I like this because the knowledge that he did that, raises up an awareness of Godliness in me. This awareness is, I think, a mode of intuiting Reality.

      I guess what I’m trying to say is that our judgments about things are unimportant, but some of our feelings (the bhakti feelings, the intuitions of Divinity) are not. These feelings are stimulated by things but they are not judgments about things. This is like what Polat and I said to each other here the other day, that when we love someone, we become aware of love when we think about that person, but that person is not the object of love and we are not the subjects.

      So yes, I agree with you, let’s disregard our judgments. But let’s honor and love and deeply appreciate our intuitions of the Divine. Those intuitions may seem trivial at first — but they aren’t.

      The signature of those intuitions, their characteristic fragrance, is love.

      Part of me thinks that perhaps that too is an idea (that gurus need to be a certain way) that needs to be shed

      Let’s go all the way with this. Rotten people can be enlightened and rotten people can teach us useful things. Ramana once said that for all we know, Hitler was self-realized.

      Why does she feel the need to brand everything on her website (the title Maharishika, her name, all the youtube videos look a certain way etc). It generates again a spec of a doubt.

      I agree. It suggests to me that she’s not Self-realized.

      Again – I do realize this is my own belief about how teachers/gurus are supposed to be and this may just be a flaw.

      I think there are two different things here that should be distinguished. First, whether the guru’s personality and behavior match our idea of what a guru should be. Second, whether the guru is Self-realized. The second question is important and valid.

      Here’s a video I happened to run across earlier today that gives some reasons why.

      https://youtu.be/Phnax-VIyaU

      1. beautifully put, Freddie. I agree with everything.

        Your note sparked some more thoughts –
        Reverence is a useful term you used that resonated with me. While reading it, I realized my idea of a guru includes a feeling of reverence that should be generated in me, and perhaps that is the ‘impulse’ or glimpse as you talk about. And if they are selling something – then that feeling of reverence is thwarted – likely because my ego tells me that they can take advantage of me or I can lose something of value (money? trust? betrayal?).

        The catch 22 with listing out teachers who don’t sell their teaching/time is that it is hard to draw a line. For example, even Francis Lucille charges for retreats and various other things (e.g. audio recordings). An argument could be made that all of that just is cost of operations (same goes with cost of shipping a book or hosting a website etc.) perhaps at a zero-profit model but if I am asking that question, isn’t my mind already separate/divisive/categorizing?

        1. Hi Metta,

          Good points about drawing a line and covering costs. Even Ramana’s ashram sold copies of the little booklet Who Am I? (for an extremely low price) rather than giving them away.

          because my ego tells me that they can take advantage of me or I can lose something of value (money? trust? betrayal?).

          Two thoughts. (1) The ego could be right about this and yet even so the guru might be effective. For example, the TM movement was a money-grubbing operation if there ever was one and yet many seekers say that it helped them. (2) When an effective guru successfully guides you toward enlightenment, the ego, sensing its own doom, might generate warnings and fears that you are at risk of “los[ing] something of value (money? trust? betrayal?)” when what it is really afraid of is its own end.

          if I am asking that question, isn’t my mind already separate/divisive/categorizing?

          Sure but why is that a problem? That’s what minds do. Enlightenment requires that we disidentify with the mind not that it stop thinking completely.

          In order to “sign up” with a guru, don’t we have to choose one? Doesn’t the choice have to be made somehow?

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