WITHOUT GROUNDING, the practitioner may experience many negative side effects from energy practices. Among the many possible side effects, “Kundalini psychosis” (also known as “Kundalini syndrome”) is one of the most common. Kundalini psychosis occurs when too much hot or Yang Chi rushes up the spine (or right or left psychic channel) to the brain and gets stuck there. Symptoms include intense heat and/or pressure in the head or heart, visual and auditory haIlucinations, paranoia, disorientation, obsessive thinking, and insomnia. These symptoms can persist for days, weeks, or even longer.
Energy jams in the brain and causes it to overheat, which can cause hallucinations. Energy jams in the heart and causes it to overheat. Hot energy travels up to the head.
Some people have experienced Kundalini psychosis spontaneously without having done any energy practices at all. Others have activated it accidentally through recreational drug use. There are also some who have triggered Kundalini psychosis as result of doing meditation practices that do not emphasize balanced energy circulation. Hakuin Zenji, the father of the Japanese Rinzai school of Zen Buddhism, wrote in his famous book The Embossed Tea Kettle about the “Zen illness” that frequently afflicted his monks and nearly killed him. Hakuin finally went to a Taoist hermit for a cure.
In modern times, people who experience Kundalini psychosis usually do not know what is causing the problem and are often diagnosed as psychotic. Many have been institutionalized in psychiatric hospitals and treated, usually unsuccessfully, with strong medication and psychotherapy. Because the root of this disorder is actually energetic, the most effective cure for Kundalini psychosis is to lead the energy back down from the head to the navel or soles of the feet. This is accomplished by opening the Microcosmic Orbit.
Bringing the energy down is much easier if one learns grounding techniques. Earth energy, Yin and magnetic, helps attract the energy downward. One can also draw the Yin earth energy upward; this cools the heat in the head and increases the kidneys’ Yin power. The rapidity and effectiveness of this cure can be dramatic; often symptoms are reduced almost immediately, and total cures can be brought about within two or three weeks, if not days.
Other problems that can occur from lack of grounding include overheating, high blood pressure, headaches, heart palpitation or arrhythmia, lack of focus on the details of life, distractedness, or a general sense of “spiciness”. All these symptoms can usually be effectively prevented through the simple technique of opening the Microcosmic Orbit and learning to connect to the energy of Mother Earth.
You may need to practice more to vent any excess energies (or negative emotional energies) that tend to stick in the heart or in the head when the Microcosmic Orbit is first opened.
Copyright © 1993 Mantak and Maneewan Chia
Mantak Chia is the only person who has been named Chigong Master of the Year twice by the International Congress of Chinese Medicine and Qi Gong.
By Tara Springett
This is the masterpiece of spiritual books on kundalini. It illustrates the basic concepts of kundlini, chakras, purification of chakras, and the effect of chakras on our health. Tara Springett explains this complex subject in a very simple way. Her experience in the spiritual journey helps her to be a psychotherapist, counselor and medication teacher. She explains the subject with the help of numerous case studies. Her union with a higher power ordered her to write the book. The book is the outcome of her communication with a divine being, White Tara, which opens the way to the deepest metaphysical secrets of universe. Read this book to balance the sea of love and blissful life force which exists in the divine essence of every human being. Your journey toward the deity-state will be easy by following the path shown by Tara Springett. —Shirish Bhoodhar
By Gopi Krishna
This book is a greatly expanded (two-thirds more material) version of Gopi Krishna’s autobiography. It contains the most famous published account of a Kundalini explosion, a dramatic event that sometimes occurs to people who practice certain kinds of Yoga. Gopi Krishna was a government bureaucrat who, while meditating in 1937 at the age of 34, suddenly perceived a roaring stream of light rising into his head from his spine. For months afterward he suffered a variety of painful physical and mental symptoms including some that seem akin to psychosis. These symptoms gradually subsided into a condition which he regarded as higher consciousness. The work is particularly fascinating because Gopi Krishna was a modern, skeptical, secular man who described his experiences with the skill of a novelist and without mysticism. For a first-person account of a similar experience which was inspired by this book, see this article by one of our contributing editors; he explains how he made it happen.
By Bonnie Greenwell, PhD
Ruth Angela, an Amazon reviewer, writes:
“This book has everything explained, clearly and succinctly for the person looking for clarity about Kundalini awakening. I highly recommend it to anyone who has no idea what Kundalini is or what an awakening means. But it is also very useful for those who have awakened and need to fill in some basic facts and details about the phenomena.
I met Ms. Greenwell recently, and she has a deep and common sense understanding of this topic having had years of interviews with people who have been through this life-altering process. She lays it all out for everyone to understand with examples and a review of commonly asked questions. It could be a primer on the topic. The focus is on practical down-to-earth advice and information. The same information could be in some ancient Indian text, but to a Western reader it would be incomprehensible; Bonnie Greenwell has rectified this problem by covering the thousand questions one would have on this subject in simple straight-forward language. Her first book "Energies of Transformation" was a great help to me and many others who wanted to find out more about this topic. But this new book has condensed everything into a easily absorbed format that can be read both as informational and for future reference. Start here if you really want to get a clear picture of the phenomena of Kundalini.”
This page was first published on October 16, 2015, last revised on April 4, 2019, and last republished on October 16, 2020.