Kundalini Meditation: A Guide To Awaken Your Inner Potential

When searching for ways to engage in a meditative practice, you may have come across various styles. They range from Zen Meditation and Mindfulness Meditation to Transcendental Meditation and Vipassana Meditation. But have you heard of Kundalini Meditation? When you’re looking for a way to awaken your inner potential, consider this meditative practice.

We want to help you discover a meaningful way to practice a style of meditation that will heighten the positive energy in your life.

Allow this article to be your guide to:

  • The Origin of Kundalini Meditation
  • How Kundalini Meditation Awakens Your Inner Potential
  • Introductory Steps toward Beginning a Kundalini Meditation Practice
woman doing a kundalini meditation

The Origin of Kundalini Meditation

To fully understand the meaning of Kundalini Meditation, it’s best to start with a brief definition of Kundalini Yoga and its origin. It’s difficult to pinpoint the exact date of Kundalini’s beginnings, but it can be stated that it dates back to at least 1000 BC.

In Sanskrit, the ancient language of yoga, Kundalini means the coiled snake.” Imagine a sleeping serpent that rests at the base of your spine. The Kundalini tradition refers to the awakening of this snake that represents “divine energy.” That energy rises throughout the body along the spine following the course of the Seven Chakras.

Yogi Bhajan is responsible for introducing Kundalini Yoga and Meditation to the western culture. He taught that one is capable of developing a greater awareness of their body, mind, and spirits.

He created a yoga practice designed to release the energy of the coiled snake sleeping at the base of the spine (the Root Chakra). One can then channel that energy through the Seven Chakras and out through the top of the head (the Crown Chakra).

a coiled blue snake on a branch

How Kundalini Meditation Awakens Your Inner Potential

When thinking about the intention of a meditative practice, one idea is to awaken your inner potential. This is a strategy in which you can tap into your strengths, talents, and traits to be the best person you can possibly be. Awakening your inner potential with the power of Kundalini Meditation involves some important key elements:

  • Opening Chant
  • Pranayama
  • Kriya
  • Relaxation
  • Meditation
  • Closing Chant

Opening Chant

Each Kundalini Meditation Yoga class begins with a chant. This is a way to “tune in” and be fully present for your yogic experience.

The traditional Kundalini opening chant is called the Adi Mantra: “Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo.” It is a Sanskrit mantra that can be sung or spoken; it means “I bow to the Creative Wisdom, I bow to the Divine Teacher.”

It is a mindful invocation that awakens the energy channels in your body.

Pranayama (Breathing Exercises)

There are a collection of specific breathing exercises in Kundalini Yoga and Meditation that are designed to generate and sustain the powerful internal energy.

Breathing is the foundation of many meditative practices. It is a way to stay focused on your intentional exercise as well as open up the body and mind to reach your full potential.

Kapalabhati (kah-pahl-lah-bahtee) or “Breath of Fire” is a typical breathing exercise in Kundalini. It is an energetic breathing technique that stokes an internal “fire” and has the power to awaken the sleeping snake at the base of the spine.

It consists of taking short, quick breaths through your nose. You will experience a “pumping” effect with your belly. When you inhale, your belly will fill with air. When you exhale, you will pull in your belly and engage your core muscles.

Kriya

This is another Sanskrit term that means “action.” It is often a series of breathing exercises combined with physical movements to evoke certain intended outcomes. For example, reducing anxiety, enhancing positive thinking, or even cleansing your liver can be the intention of the prescribed kriya during your practice.

Relaxation

When you are complete with your kriya exercises, you will turn to relaxation. It is an opportunity to absorb the energy you have created during your session so far.

Meditation

Once the body has settled down, the next component of the Kundalini practice is meditation. Here, you will come to complete stillness to concentrate on all that you have achieved in your practice.

This is the most important part of the whole practice. You use the breathwork and kriya to produce a change in the body, mind, and spirit. Meditation is the moment to sit in this new stillness to be actively aware of the energetic chakra opening and embody its effects.

a woman wearing all white doing kundalini meditation in a forest

Closing Chant

To finish your practice, a closing chant is often sung. It is a way to bring your Kundalini Meditation to a close. The intention is to hold onto the Kundalini energy that you have generated in your practice.

When you engage in a Kundalini Meditation class, something quite remarkable happens over time. Through chanting, breathwork, kriya, and meditation, an energetic shift occurs in your body.

The energetic centers, the Chakras, experience an opening and release. They begin to unlock the tensions, obstacles, and barriers that tend to overwhelm you and hold you down. The blockages restrict the possibility of reaching your highest inner potential.

Feelings like depression, anxiety, sadness, fear, anger, and other heavy emotions carry a low vibration and low frequency. Think of your Kundalini practice as a way to recharge and bring new life to your body, mind, and spirit.

As you use this practice consistently, you encourage the shift toward a higher vibration and frequency. The emotions that sit at this higher resonance are joy, appreciation, gratitude, peace, bliss, and love.

prayer beads wrapped around the hands of a statue

When you unlock these channels to reinforce this higher vibration, your life-view shifts significantly. You will begin to see things more positively, you will treat yourself and others with greater kindness and love, and you will even feel physically and mentally lighter. A gateway opens so you can move toward being your best self.

6 Introductory Steps toward Beginning a Kundalini Meditation Practice

Anyone can begin a Kundalini Meditation practice. You do not need a wealth of yoga or meditative experience to enjoy the benefits of this style of meditation. All you need is a desire to positively transform your mind, body, and spirit. Here are six steps for beginning your Kundalini Meditation practice:

  • Comfortable Clothing
  • Breath
  • Mantras
  • Relaxation
  • Keep It Short
  • Repeat

#1: Wear Comfortable Clothing

Since this is a meditative practice, you want to be as comfortable as possible. It is suggested that you wear soft, loose-fitting clothing so you do not feel restricted or distracted by your clothing while you meditate.

a man doing kundalini yoga dressed all in white

#2: Focus On The Breath

Concentrate on your breathing. While you sit in stillness, focus on your breath. Take slow intentional breaths; experience the sound and feel of each inhale and each exhale. You can inhale through your nose and then exhale through your nose or mouth to create an intentional breathing practice.

#3: Repeat Mantras

A mantra is a word or phrase that you can repeat out loud or in your head while you take your deep breaths. Repeating a mantra is another form of kriya in your Kundalini practice. The action of breathing and chanting your mantra helps the awakening of your inner potential.

This mantra can be an intention or feeling you’d like to create in your life. For example, your mantra while you meditate maybe “I am strong,” “I walk in joy and love,” “my heart shines brightly,” or any other saying. This phrase can be anything you’d like. Just be sure that it is positive and reinforces a high frequency and energy.

#4: Relax

After a few moments of breathing and reciting your mantra, take time to completely relax. This may involve sitting in stillness or lying down on your back with your eyes closed. Breathe slowly and gently while allowing all the muscles in your body to relax.

a kundalini meditation arm gesture with psychedelic patterns overlayed

#5: Keep It Short

As you begin your Kundalini Meditation work, you can keep your sessions short. Three to five minutes each time is sufficient to introduce your body and mind to this new exercise. Incorporate this routine of intentional breathing, creating and chanting your mantra, and ending with relaxation.

#6: Be Consistent

To fully experience the benefits of this practice, engage in Kundalini Meditation consistently. A few minutes of Kundalini will allow for the desired change you want. In a relatively short time, you will feel negative energy dissolve while more positive energy emerges. Notice how your stress and sadness transform into joy and happiness.

The higher vibrational emotions you experience will positively reinforce you to practice more. You may start by practicing this style of yoga 2-to-3 times per week. As you feel a change occur, you’ll practice more and for a longer time.

More guidance on kundalini meditation

A Kundalini Meditative practice can certainly be done on your own, but if you need guidance you can turn to some videos online:

If you need further assistance, consult a Kundalini instructor for further teachings and guidance. You can also find Kundalini Yoga classes by researching your local yoga studios to see if they offer this style of practice.

So, if you’re looking for a healthy way to make positive changes in your life, consider a Kundalini Meditation practice. Following the components of the Kundalini tradition, you can enjoy an energetic awakening that will spur mindful growth, spiritual development, and an expansion of your inner potential.

Photo of author
John Cottrell is a Registered Yoga Teacher and Certified Yoga Therapist residing in Salt Lake City, Utah.

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