Advanced Yoga Practices
Main Lessons

Previous  |  Next

Note: For the Original Internet Lessons with additions, see the AYP Easy Lessons Books. For the Expanded and Interactive Internet Lessons, AYP Online Books, Audiobooks and more, see AYP Plus.

Lesson 203 - Reflections on Some Dramatic Experiences  (Audio)

AYP Plus Additions:
203.1 - Powerful Practices and Vulnerable Souls  (Audio)

From: Yogani
Date: Tue Jun 1, 2004 8:27pm

New Visitors: It is recommended you read from the beginning of the archive, as previous lessons are prerequisite to this one. The first lesson is, "Why This Discussion?"

Q: I am going to an ashram in India for almost a month. My guru will be there, the one who I truly resonate with.

I want to talk to you about some things that have been going on. I am grateful to have someone who will respond with something other than a hearty laugh at my "goings on." (My guru always just smiles or laughs.) He told me less than a year ago that I was resisting. I do not wish to resist Truth. Why live in ignorance? But still, I must have some resistance. 

I have had all sorts of crazy things happening. I'm the one who'd written you a while back about always having the kundalini - even as a little child - seeing the lights, feeling the buzz, hearing the hums, etc. etc. But what's going on now is even more. I need to tell someone who does not know me or anyone around me this. A lot of it is stuff I've already experienced, but some of it is new. I'll list it:

Seeing flashes of light of all colors now and then - especially around animals and people and some trees.

Feeling energy coursing through my body - highly erotic, but not sexual (not exactly...)

Stiffness and pain around the bottom, back of skull and into back of neck and jaw. Lots of popping going on along the spine there - especially during the spinal breathing you gave me (which I incorporated into my yoga pranayams).

My right hand has been doing a lot of sporadic shaking and if I get any extra energy surges, I start squeezing it and then releasing it by flexing it backwards quickly - as if the energy were just pouring out of it. A lot of vibrating in the hands and feet. 

A general feeling of excitement.

Sobs come when I think on my gurus' compassion. People keep telling me what you have told me, that the guru is within... that brings me to the next thing - I hear my gurus in my head. Yes, I know it sounds crazy, but they tell me the answers when I need one. I could actually go to them with all of this - but I want external validation. 

If I need an answer, I open up Beyond Words, and it speaks of exactly what I need to hear - in the precise words. 

My guru's picture seems to move and the expressions actually change while I am looking at it, communicating with him.

I can tell what people are feeling - and seem to know before them why they are feeling this way.

If someone asks me a question on spirituality, I can move aside and someone else seems to answer through me.

At certain times, it's like I'm detached, like a balloon, floating in the air, watching myself down below. During these times, if I look at the ground, it seems so far down there...but there is a general unconcern during these times about most things.

Things are seeming to manifest - without any stated intention on my part. I only have to sort of unconsciously think it, and it happens. 

I am meeting people on the "path" a lot now. 

I am still having fits where I shake - especially if I go inside to certain places where I feel a lot of intensity.

I started having those things again where energy explodes through my system (that I've had my whole life off and on) where it shoots out everywhere, but my solar plexus is disturbed and I feel like I have to swallow a lot, and I also feel like I need to use the bathroom (and often have to find a restroom very soon afterwards). I am then tired and have a hard time communicating anything - sort of in a daze.

When I'm talking to people that I feel free with (at my church or in my yoga group), I've found that my body starts doing things to express its bliss. It will start waving its arms in the air in a dance, or doing tree posture, or outright dancing! 

When I meditated with a man from our church - doing a tantric meditation - I started a lot of the shaking - energy going up the spine and out the top or around the mouth or third eye.

If I ever just lie there, still, my awareness of the energy increases heavily. During meditation, I feel surges coming, Grace from above, descending down, down, down, through me. (Thank you God and Guru!)

Third eye is doing a lot of whirring about.

Often, lately, in the car, I will begin feeling my Guru(s), or having a conversation with them, and this inwardly exciting thing starts happening, and I feel I have to scream! So I scream a scream that is penetrating and shrill and sort of blissful. My right hand starts doing its thing and/or my spine starts lurching about - but I'm perfectly OK and still in control of the car.

At times, I will move my hand in a certain fashion, or flip my hair, and I feel as if I AM my guru. Yes, strange, I know. Is this something to do with merging? It's literally as if I can't tell the difference between him and me for that short instance. It's nothing I'm thinking about, really, it's more like for a flash, I feel no difference between us.

I'm feeling like I need to meditate with others a lot lately.

During my meditations, I used to be able to go into them without even remembering anything. Now, though, I have jerks in my body often.I have had two dreams/visions, where I am not at all afraid of death. One, while standing on a plastic tarp in the middle of the ocean as large waves rolled around. The other, a man was burying my orange dress. The dress stood for spirituality and seemed to be synonymous with my skin. I did not feel anything as I watched him covering it with dirt. I am willing to drop every concept I have had of "spirituality" and begin anew. 

I seem to have picked up a hoard of spirit guides or teachers on the astral plane. I don't even know how I am aware of this.

I have recently spoken with an "Indigo." I could feel him very strongly over the phone, although I've never met him. Beautiful. 

Picking up vibes of lower entities and also seeing one in my classroom door. He lurks about there often as a dark silhouette - opening my cabinet door, etc. to get my (and my students') attention.

Longing is intense. I feel this "place" which I've known before, but cannot seem to find and hold. It visits like a flash and then is gone. My guru told me, "You have not done this before." 

Anyway, I'll be seeing my guru coming up, but I am unsure if I should tell him about these things and talk with him about them. I don't know what will happen next. Never do. I don't care. I am here for it to happen. If it is unnecessary emotion and commotion which helps nothing other than convincing me, then I want to fast forward to the part where I no longer need these things to be convinced. As Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee says of the 2 yr. old girl's prayer, "God, I know." and God said, "Yes, and I know." My guru knows. But I could use some sort of explanation, still. Do you have one for me? Or is it all part of the mystery and will be spoiled by another telling me? Or will I not understand anyway?

Should I be doing meditations? I've met a new man who I want to do meditations with. He goes to my church. Also, should I do reiki swap outs? Or is this not good for me at this time?

I was speaking with someone who I know has been working on himself for a long time. He is one of the very few I confide in, and actually I'd not told anyone this outright, but I was telling him that I could communicate with my teachers in my head and that one of them comforts me and another is more of a motivator, but that the essential core of them felt the same. (It gets confusing. Are they me?) And he said he does not have this. I doubted for a second my experience when he said it because of him and you - always telling me the guru is within. I don't know who I am anymore - I seem to be expanding into something else. Maybe my guru and others are within as aspects of my inner guru...

Maybe it's the pranayams, meditation, and asanas that are speeding things up. I still don't feel as if I've reached where I once "was."

Despite all of this, my life is pretty balanced/ordinary. I'm still teaching and planning to make more trips to India. (I'm testing the waters on this trip. If it feels right, I'll come back for a while, and then move to India for two years (as my guru has suggested.) On the other hand, I'm having to do extra alternate nostril breathing for inner balance. Family still doesn't like my yogic stuff, but church and yogic family does. Still have some time for my dog and 3 cats. 

I also make time to read your Advanced Yoga Practices often. Still not anywhere near finished with them...

Sorry such a long letter! I had a lot going on and I needed to release it! We are all so blessed to have someone to respond to us and give us the attention you have given us. I hope you are taking care of your physical body and not overly exerting yourself. 

A: It's good to hear from you again. 

Much of what you are experiencing falls under the category of purification in the nervous system. As such, it is a mixture of truth and the karmic "exhaust" of obstructions being dissolved and burned up. That is perhaps why your guru is not responding on the details. It is impossible to do so and make sense of everything that is happening. Nor will it matter for the karmic combustion parts of it. And what is true will stand on its own. Truth is what is left when all the rest has been burned off. 

There are a few points I'd like to mention. 

To the extent you are doing practices, you are hastening the process. That is good, but excessive practices can lead to excessive symptoms, and then prudent "self-pacing" should be applied. There is no point to be doing practices to the extent where life becomes chaos and one cannot function. I know that is not where you are, but if you press too hard with extra practices, and all the other things you are considering, it could become like that. So, a little moderation and measurement of daily practices would not hurt. We want to go fast, but not so fast that we shake to pieces or burn up.

Keep in mind that the most balancing practice you have from the lessons is spinal breathing. Too much or too little of it can leave you either short on balancing or short on progress. Doing the same amount of spinal breathing at each twice-daily sitting is important, whether it be 5, 10, 15 or more minutes, depending on your comfort level. The same goes for meditation. The rest of the practices in the lessons wrap around those two. If you are "doubling up" on practices in each sitting, like doing two or more kinds of meditation, or multiple pranayamas beyond what is recommended in a single approach, or adding additional group practices on a regular basis, all that will contribute to the potential for excessive releases. So it is best to stick with a steady routine of complementary practices, paced for maximum progress with good comfort. I mention all that just as food for thought. You seem to be doing okay, though you are pushing the envelope a bit there. No doubt the envelope will get pushed even more in India, though you will be under good supervision there, right? 

The two most important experiences you mentioned from my perspective are the witnessing, which is the rise of inner silence, and the erotic/ecstatic sensations moving up through your body. These two are at the heart of the enlightenment process, its foundation actually, and are what advanced yoga practices cultivate. To be honest, all the rest is just a passing show, and ought not be given more than casual notice, and definitely not favored over practices. A recent Q&A covering this in detail is called, "The drama of a premature crown opening." With limited inner silence/witnessing, one can be prone to identify too much with experiences. Enlightenment is not about experiences. A few lessons earlier is one called "Managing the opening of the crown." You might find these two discussions pertinent to your situation. Not that all of it applies to you, but you will see some of the same elements, benefits, and risks you have had or are facing now. 

On seeing the guru(s) inside, that is along the lines of what is described in lesson #57, "The guru is in me?" The guru begins in us as desire, goes out to link with outer knowledge and/or physical guru, and then goes back inside and is seen there. So seeing your guru(s) inside is a natural part of the bhakti process. Eventually, he/they will dissolve into your rising enlightenment and it will be your own Self that is radiating out. All of this is part of the process of purification also, so your guru may not focus on it because the details of karmic release are unfathomable. It is all going on in you, leading inevitably to your enlightenment. That is the most important thing.

It sounds like you are doing very well. Just favor stability in your routine of practices, and try to avoid jumping whole-hog into new ones until you develop an understanding of how they will complement your overall practices. Otherwise you could be "doubling up" on things and overdoing. It takes a certain amount of ordinary everyday activity to stabilize the energies we stimulate in practices, so sometimes less practice and more activity can bring more progress. You have all this in your busy routine already, of course. These are just reminders. 

Thanks for your concern for me. Just so you will know, the posting of core lessons on Yahoo is almost done. All that is left is a posting summarizing all of the principles and practices, and a lesson on tips for keeping a regular practice going within a busy schedule - a big challenge for most of us in this workaday world. After covering those things, there may be less activity on Yahoo for a while (emails will be answered to the best of my ability and Q&As will be posted, as appropriate). Then I will be focusing on publishing two hard copy books, both which are in good draft form already -- one being an enhanced version of these lessons, and the other being a spiritual/adventure/romance novel with the actual advanced yoga practices woven into it. If anyone knows a good literary agent with a strong interest in spiritual/new age book publishing, let me know. That is the next step. 

Also, the Yahoo lessons will be mirrored to a free access web site. All of this will be to make sure the knowledge is secure and widely available for whoever wants it. 

Have a wonderful time in India! I'd love to hear from you when you get back. 

The guru is in you.

Related Lessons Topic Path

Discuss this Lesson in the AYP Plus Support Forum

Note: For detailed instructions on building a balanced daily practice routine with self-pacing, including retreat guidelines, see the Eight Limbs of Yoga Book, and AYP Plus.

Previous  |  Next