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Awakening the Sleeping Serpent: A Journey of Self-Discovery and Transformation

Updated: Aug 15, 2023



In the realm of spiritual exploration and self-discovery, the symbolism of the serpent has been revered across various cultures throughout history. Often portrayed as a potent symbol of transformation, the serpent represents the coiled energy lying dormant within us, waiting to be awakened. This dormant energy is known as the Kundalini; associated with the divine feminine or shakti and represents our internal power and inner fire.


The Symbolism of the Serpent


The serpent is a significant symbol in Hinduism, Lord Shiva, the destroyer and transformer, is often depicted with a coiled serpent around his neck, signifying his mastery over Kundalini energy. Kundalini, originating from Sanskrit, means "coiled snake," and it refers to the potential spiritual energy located at the base of the spine. This dormant energy is believed to lie in a deep slumber until it is awakened, prompting transformation in an individual's consciousness.


Awakening the Serpent Within


The concept of awakening the Kundalini energy requires a dedicated commitment to spiritual growth and self-awareness. The process of awakening the serpent within is a journey fraught with challenges and rewards.

Various practices, including asana, meditation, breath-work, and mindfulness aid in the awakening of this dormant energy. The sleeping serpent ascends upwards from the Root (Muladhara) Chakra along the spine, intersecting at all seven chakras until it arrives at the Crown (Sahasrara) Chakra.


Postures (Asana)



The following Asana postures work to focus on the lower chakras;

Cobra (Bhujangasana), Locust (Shalabhasana), and Bridge (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana). Tree (Vrikshasana), Mountain (Tadasana), and Warrior (I, II, III) (Virabhadrasana I, II, III) cultivate a sense of stability and connection with Mother Earth






Breath-work (Pranayama)

Nadi Shodhana (Alternate Nostril Breathing) and Kapalabhati (Skull-Shining Breath) cleanse, unblock, and balance the subtle energy channels (Nadis) in the body in preparation for the ascent of energy. Prana (Life force) is moved with our breath; with each inhale we take in nourishment and find inspiration, with each exhale we release toxins and let go of what is no longer serving us. This cycle of inhalation and exhalation is a fundamental aspect of our existence, sustaining our life and connecting us to the rhythmic flow of nature: serving as a constant reminder of our connection to the world around us, as well as the cyclical nature of life.


Meditation (Dyhana)


Through consistent and mindful meditation, individuals can embark on a profound journey of self-discovery and spiritual growth that awakens the dormant potential within oneself. Meditation opens the heart, dissolves the ego, calms the monkey mind, and brings us to the present moment.



The Awakening


As the sleeping serpent begins to stir, a myriad of challenges will occur.. The surge of energy can be overwhelming and even disorienting when suppressed emotions resurface, demanding attention and resolution. The process of awakening the sleeping serpent is about grounding oneself in the present moment, and yoking mind, body, breath and spirit. As the energy rises, practitioners may experience states of bliss, deep insights, and a sense of interconnectedness with the universe around them. Leading to heightened creativity, increased intuition, and a profound sense of purpose and fulfillment.

It is essential to recognize that the process of awakening the Kundalini energy is not a race, but a journey that requires both personal work and community engagement. Regular self-care practice and a supportive community of like-minded individuals will encourage individual harmony and celebrate our unique differences.



In Conclusion


The concept of awakening the sleeping serpent, the Kundalini energy, is an ancient and profound one. As with any spiritual journey, it is essential to approach this endeavor with patience, dedication, and caution. The process of Kundalini awakening can be both transformational and challenging, but for those who courageously embark on this path, the rewards are life changing. It is a journey of uncovering our True Self and connecting with our internal and external environments to help lead us towards a life filled with purpose, wisdom, and love.


Lisa Ostler

RN, BSN, NC-BC, RYT

Olympia Integrative Healing llc


Works Cited:


Harpers, D. (n.d.). Kundalini awakening: Chakras activation to expand Mind power: Open your third eye with chakra meditation and breathing techniques.


Kk. (2023, April 19). The kundalini snake: What does it represent and what are its powers?. yogajala. https://yogajala.com/the-kundalini-snake/



 

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