Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan is the Yoga of Awareness. It is the householder’s yoga—for people who are active in the world. Most other systems of yoga were developed by those living the renunciate life. Kundalini Yoga gives you tools to expedite your spiritual growth and healing.
Practice gives you an experience beyond the limits of time and space—an experience of the depth of your soul and true identity. This direct experience of your higher self builds a platform of strength, radiance, and security on which to build your life.
Kundalini Yoga also provides more well-known benefits: increased flexibility, expanded lung capacity, a strong core, and stress alleviation. Here are 10 more great—and perhaps unexpected—benefits of Kundalini Yoga:
1. Inner Guidance
Kundalini Yoga develops the power of the intuitive mind. Your intuition is the voice of your own inner GPS. Every person has inner guidance available to them and can choose to listen and live with its support. When you clean out the subconscious mind and learn to listen through deep meditation, when your thoughts and feelings resonate with the soul, you can sense the guidance of intuition that is always present.
As you develop your internal guidance system, you can use it as a touchstone when faced with the decisions, questions, and choices life brings you.
2. Express Yourself through Sacred Sound
Kundalini Yoga is known for the sacred chant music that is part and parcel of the practice. When we consciously regulate the sounds we make through the use of mantra, breath, and rhythm, we can produce profound effects on our health and well-being, not to mention the pure joy that is experienced when we chant from our hearts and souls.
Sacred sound, or Naad Yoga, is based on the experience of how sound vibrations affect the body, mind, and spirit through the movement of the tongue, the mouth, and changes in the chemicals in the brain.
3. The Lineage of the Golden Chain
Kundalini Yoga has been taught for thousands of years, transmitted from Master to student. When you chant Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo to begin a Kundalini Yoga class, you become linked to the long line of spiritual masters who have preceded you.
You are calling on this lineage and the teacher within you for guidance, protection, and wisdom. This lineage is called the Golden Chain. It is a transference of spiritual awareness that guarantees that the teachings of Kundalini Yoga remain pure, unadulterated, and effective.
4. Turn Karma into Dharma
The practice of Kundalini Yoga takes you out of the cycle of karma. Your positive intention to grow and put yourself through Kundalini kriyas (exercises) burns off karma. The more you practice, the more present, conscious, and intuitive you become. Walk the path of dharma rather than living in response to karma.
5. Protect Yourself from Negative Influences
Kundalini Yoga practice fortifies and expands your electromagnetic field, or aura. It is the energy field that surrounds you, and that alerts you to positive and negative influences in your environment. A weak aura can let in negative influences, and even attract them. A big, strong, bright aura can protect you from negativity and keep you centered in the light of your true identity.
6. Emotional Balance and the Neutral Mind
Kundalini Yoga strengthens the nervous system, balances the glands, purifies the blood, and cleans out subconscious thought patterns. This gives you greater awareness and ability to choose how you respond to your thoughts and feelings. Through practice, you can train your mind and body not to react emotionally—not by repressing emotions, but by developing a buffer zone, a time and space in which to process and make conscious choices about your responses.
Develop the neutral mind, the place where the positive and the negative are evaluated in an instant, and you can act from that state of non-attachment, compassion, and neutrality. Act, don’t react.
7. Deep Relaxation that Heals
Kundalini Yoga works to strengthen and balance the nervous system. When your nervous system is weak, you are susceptible to unhealthy reactions to stress. During a Kundalini Yoga kriya and the deep relaxation that follows it, all the nerve endings in the body are given a tune-up. You experience a deep rejuvenating state of total relaxation where healing can take place. Regular practice gives you extra stamina and resilience in the face of everyday stress.
8. Kundalini Yoga Lifestyle
Because Kundalini Yoga is specifically geared for the householder—people who have jobs and families and busy lives, it works quickly, is effective, and includes a vast array of lifestyle information. You can choose to attend a weekly yoga class and reap the benefits found there.
You can also choose to dive into a whole body of ancient yogic teachings on personal hygiene, yogic diet, numerology, child-rearing, authentic relationships, conscious communication, selfless service, and much more.
Being together with like-minded souls is a powerful support tool in the quest for spiritual growth and higher consciousness. Kundalini Yoga centers and studios welcome yoga students and teachers to create community. Celebrate special occasions with group meditations, sacred chant concerts, pot luck get-togethers and community service projects.
3HO Foundation International sponsors worldwide Kundalini Yoga events, as do local Kundalini Yoga centers. As you make positive changes in your life, the connection with and support of a spiritual family is a priceless gift.
10. Befriend your Soul and Manifest Your Destiny
Kundalini Yoga gives you an experience of who you are when the grip of ego is released. It allows the depth of the soul to be felt and known. Begin to access your truth and create a strong connection to your soul and your soul’s work in this lifetime.
Kundalini Yoga is an experience of uniting the finite self with the Infinite. Once you gain this experience, you no longer have the need to look for your security outside of yourself. Your security comes from knowing who you are in relation to the Universe. You know who you are, and you can be you. You can leave the pain of past wounds behind, and manifest your soul’s destiny.
By Guru Tera Kaur, 3HO Editor (This blog originally appeared in www.3HO.org)