A Reader Asks: What To Do About Kundalini Rising?

Dear Barbara,
I do have a question for you.
I spoke a few days ago with a woman who runs a store here in town, and she mentioned that her son had experienced some sort of uprising of kundalini energy when he was 17 years old.  She said that they had no idea what to do about it.

What does one do about it?  Does the KRN (Kundalini Research Network) have a position on this?  If kundalini is considered to exist in all religions, does a non-religious person choose a meditation at random?  Should the parents ignore the event, or try to ground the boy with changes in diet or exercise?

I assume that hospitalization with medication is not a preferred choice, but what is the proper choice?

Just checking,


Dear JM

That's a huge question and one that has plagued me for years.

I think I told you recently that I listed our 18 signs of arousal  (that Bruce Greyson and I put together) to a group of 100 people who are working a 12 step program and more than half identified themselves with a possible kundalini rising. 

And I have heard horror stories at conferences from people that did have something happen like this young man you mention, in their teen years and were hospitalized on a psych unit and subsequently put on psych drugs -- enough of which gave them what we call "a chemical lobotomy."

When people write me or come in for a session -- I advise them to read my book Spiritual Awakenings and then come back with their questions. 

We, my husband who is an integrative psychiatrist (and has many books dealing with childhood trauma and healing from it as an adult )(usually people who come to us have PTSD from childhood trauma and some have some sort of energy arousal with the PTSD because there is a connection) we recommend yoga or acupuncture (in my earlier days when I would also do acupressure and breath work at the same time to help move this energy) and individual or group psychotherapy. We ask for a one year commitment to group therapy for many reasons but in this context -- when there is an arousal of the energy -- it is breaking through blocks and those blocks contain emotional material that came from past trauma and needs to be metabolized.

If they are calling us from elsewhere in the country -- and from all over the world (we had one woman come here from New Zealand and many from Singapore, the Caribbean Islands, all over Europe) but when they call and can't come, we recommend they stay away from physicians who will medicate them which stops the process and only postpones the work they need to do -- that is to let the energy tell them what they need -- so we recommend yoga, listening to their bodies needs for changing their diet, staying off of alcohol and other drugs -- and of course, reading Spiritual Awakenings and getting back to us with any more questions. 
We also recommend a 12 step program for getting "grounded" and finding others who are focusing on personal growth because that's what this energy arousal is really all about -- our own growth and development -- our integrating our spiritual side with our physical, emotional and intellectual side so we can be balanced. And we reassure them that this has nothing to do with religion -- it's about our own natural abilities to be a spiritual being trying to have a human experience. 

The Western Medical Model doesn't have a clue about what I just wrote above.

We also recommend the Sounds True book Kundalini Rising and Lee Sannella's books. Also if they are in an area that has an IANDS support group that can help.

In October we are having the first training for therapists to help their patients integrate their spiritually transforming experiences. I am one of the speakers and am looking forward to us putting a "dent" in this vacuum that needs to be filled.


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