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000 kundalini

Kundalini Yoga Seminar

5 October 1932 Kundalini Yoga Seminar Appendix 2


Dr. Jung wants to make some remarks on meditation technique: the process of meditation has a clear parallel in psychological analysis, though with the difference that Professor Hauer gives us a completed conceptual framework, seen from above, as if floating in ether.

If we place it on a foundation which, to begin with, we possess through our own experience, it will become more readily understandable.

To be sure, it is difficult to compare the somber, earthbound figures of our unconscious

with the Indian representation.

To meditate on the cakras we first have to extricate the original experience; hence we cannot adopt the readymade figures of yoga, and the question still remains whether our experiences fit into the tantric forms altogether.

It all thereby depends on whether we possess this matter which India already has.

That is why we have to come up with our own methods which can familiarize us with corresponding contents.

Ten or fifteen years ago, when patients brought me the first “mandalas,” I did not yet know anything about tantra yoga.

At this time Indologists were not familiar with it either—or, whenever it became known, it was scorned not only by the Europeans but also by wide sections of the Indian population.

Its seeming oddity was only sniffed at.

But we have to forget this sniffing at it now.

It is a fact that with us these things come individually and immediately out of the earth, but as small, ridiculous beginnings which we find hard to take seriously.

Example: we are dealing with a (female) patient with whom, after six years of sporadic analysis, I had finally, if very hesitatingly, to take the “yoga path.”

She was a practicing Catholic.

Catholics have a stillborn unconscious, because the church has already entirely formed, regulated, and squeezed the nature of the unconscious.

There is early evidence for this. Archbishop Athanasius of Alexandria, for example, in his biography of St. Antonius, gives his monks instructions about what from the unconscious is good and bad.

He says that the devils can also speak “words of truth” and that they can talk about things that are true.

But, he states,It would be a disgrace for us, if those who revolted against God should become our teachers.

Let us arm ourselves with the armour of justice and let us put on the helmet of redemption, and at the time of battle let us shoot mental arrows from a faithful mind.

Because the devils are nothing, and even if they were something, their strength would comprise nothing which could resist the might of the cross.

Also, the religious exercises of Ignatius of Loyola are Christian counterparts to the Indian meditations or to our fantasies from the unconscious.

The religious exercises are meditations according to church instruction; their purpose is the rehearsal of the symbols of faith.

By it the vanishing of all thoughts and fantasies that are dogmatically unacceptable is provoked.

By means of such an attitude a complete paralysis developed in my patient—everything was already there on the outside, and hence had become invisible inside.

I tried for six years to analyze her back into the church, so to speak, until she confessed what she would not have confessed to a confessor: that she believed neither in God nor in the pope but that nonetheless she would die in the fold of the church.

Despite her age (she was fifty-five years old at that time), it made her suffer that everything in her was dead and dark, for after all she was still alive, and this life was asserting its rights.

I was in a fix, because I saw that the living spirit wanted to get its way in spite of everything, and then came the original experience.

I instructed her thus to observe whether images were appearing before falling asleep, and I asked her about dreams.

Until then she had been dreaming, but from the time of my question onward she did not dream any more.

Therefore I told her to lie down and close her eyes, and now she had a vision: she saw a dark wall.

She had to hold on to this image, concentrate on it (dharana), contemplate it—“impregnate it,” so that it could become animated.

As she did so, the wall was divided into trees—it became a dark jungle, then figures started to move beneath the trees.

It was in New Mexico, and the figures were an entire tribe of [American] Indians.

The Indian archetype of the American had been animated in her.

A lake appeared before the forest.  (The forest, the original home of humanity, represents the unconscious. The lake, with its even surface impenetrable to the eye, is also an image for it.)

The Indians loosened canoes from the lakeside, loaded women and children into them, and crossed the lake.

On the other side was a desert; the Indians put up their tents there, made a fire, cooked, ate, and then retired to the tents.

They evidently went to sleep, even though it was broad daylight and the sun stood motionless in the sky.

Only the chief remained outside and turned his face to the sand desert.

Here you see the world of Citta—figures which the patient has not made and that live their own lives “willfully,” according to their own laws.

The patient now repeatedly concentrated on the chief, but he did not move.

Nothing at all happened any more.

The patient had evidently arrived at the dogmatic wall, which puts before the individual experience of the unconscious all punishments of hell.

At least the relief was great enough that she could live for a year through the effect of the image, which she never lost from sight now.

At the same time, there also developed attempts to break off—she saw, for example, heavy transport vehicles in a sandstorm, or horsemen in a snowstorm.

These images are a side-elucidation of the danger, in which she found herself through the contact with the unconscious.

But such a break is not permitted, because the story has to be brought to its end.

The patient has to stick with it and try to make progress with the Indian.

After a year she came back to analysis; and one day she was particularly impressed by the calm, dry, clear desert air in which the Indian was standing.

Suddenly she felt a bit of humidity in the air which had not been there before. Something had finally moved, and it stirred her to the extent that again she could continue to live for a year.

When after this time she came back to me, she told me that the Indian was not there any more; he had faded.

Where had he gone?

She had a second vision, and the first one had been dissolved in the second: a white serpent appeared to her in splendor and imperturbable majesty, wearing feathers and a diadem.

Personally she was in no way aware of what this image signified.

It is the well-known representation of the Mexican air and wind god Quetzalcoatl in his shape as a feathered serpent (the Plumed Serpent).

He is the redeemer-god of the Indian, who embodies for the psyche of the American person the unconscious spirit.

This vision impressed my patient tremendously and gave her the courage, after ten years, finally to make her general confession to me—with which the therapeutic effect was, of course, achieved.

What had actually happened?

The humidity had descended as dew and had fertilized and burst the wrapping of the Indian.

He now showed her his actual meaning, his undogmatic pagan face.

From the point of view of the church, it was the appearance of a devil, who had merely

assumed the form of the redeemer to mislead the Christian.

Thus the Spanish conquerors of Yucatan already interpreted the crosses that they

found all over the country as a seduction of the devil.

The early Christians, as well, who recognized the similarity between the myth of Dionysus and the life of Christ, thought that the devil had invented this Anticipatio Christi expressly to confound them.

What the patient actually did during her analysis was really puja—persisting in prayer—which then caused the transformation.

Laya, the redissolution of the figures, would for us correspond to the intellectual process of comprehension.

The patient has to know what has happened to her; she has to understand her own myth.

The image would capture and detain us, if we would not dissolve it through comprehension.

Only when we have assimilated it to the height of consciousness can new figures emerge.

6 October 1932

Dr. Jung: What one could still add here, from the psychological side, is the purely empirical results of the analysis.

In every typical course of an analysis greater awareness emerges through realizing repressions, projections, and so on.

The analytical process thus occasions a broadening of consciousness, but the relation of the ego to its objects still remains.

The ego is intertwined in conflict with the objects—one is still a part of a process.

Only in the continuation of the analysis does the analogy with yoga set in, in that consciousness is severed from its objects (Secret of the Golden Flower).

This process is linked up with the process of individuation, which begins with the self severing itself as unique from the objects and the ego.

It is as if consciousness separated from the objects and from the ego and emigrated to the non-ego—to the other center, to the foreign yet originally own.

This detachment of consciousness is the freeing from the tamas and rajas, a freeing from the passions and from the entanglement with the realm of objects.

This is something which I cannot prove philosophically any further.

It is a psychical experience, which in practice is expressed as a feeling of deliverance.

What has caused one to be previously seized with panic is not a panic any more; one is capable of seeing the tension of opposites of the world without agitation.

One does not become apathetic but is freed from entanglement.

Consciousness is removed to a sphere of objectlessness.

This experience has its effects in practical life, and indeed in the most palpable way.

It is illustrated probably most beautifully in the tale of Buddha being threatened by Mara.

Mara and all his demons assail him, but the throne of Buddha is empty—he is simply not sitting there any more.

Or as Rig Veda I, 164, has it: “Two closely united friends both embrace one and the same tree. One of them eats the sweet berry, the other looks down only composedly.”

Dr. Jung: One has to take into account here the differences between the cases in question, because what the symbols mean is entirely dependent

on the particular state of consciousness of the individual. The tree is the tree of life.

If it is standing up it is an indication of an unfolding and progressing life.

When the “yoga path” is taken, one can find this symbol at the beginning.

It also appears when doubts exist about the value of the path.

The “yoga path” is the path of the plant—a plant function as opposed to an animal one.

Ego consciousness is, so to speak, like an animal that can speak and move freely.

The tree, however, signifies the not being-able-to-make-way and the rootedness of the plant.

When someone realizes this, he suddenly has the feeling: “Now I am imprisoned.”

The image of the uprightly growing tree then placates his fear, which sees something frightening in the unavoidable.

When the path has already been taken, however, and the conviction of growth has been consolidated, then the Christian prejudice comes: what grows has to grow upward.

Then the image of the tree can appear with the roots on top, showing that its growth does not go up into the sky but downward into the depth.

There is also the tree with roots on top and at the bottom.

Here it is emphasized that one gets to roots wherever one goes.

This is what someone dreams who wishes or hopes for too much.

He is being told, “Everything around you is earth, and with the earth you are supposed to form a union.”

Conversely, the tree can have crowns on top and at the bottom; here everything is leaf and blossom and fruit—“heaven above, heaven below.”

Also, when the development apparently leads downward, the tree will still bear blossoms and fruit. I could substantiate this for each of the cases.

8 October 1932

Dr. Jung: Professor Zimmer has depicted the material as relatively simple to us.

I find it highly complicated—an ocean of individual differences, so ill defined that one cannot touch it anywhere!

Individual problems cannot be understood in uniqueness; thus one is thankful for all references, such as Zimmer’s book Artistic Form and Yoga in the Sacred Images of India, or the translation of the tantric texts by Avalon, which show that there have always been people with such problems.

The Indian conceptual world was thus for me a means to clarify personal experiences.

In 1906 I found in a mentally ill patient for the first time the image of a serpent, creeping up on her back, its head divided into a crotch.

In 1909 I even gave a lecture on this case without being aware of its general signification.

After the war a twenty-eight-year-old girl came to see me, wanting to be cured within ten hours.

She said that she had a black serpent in her belly.

She came to see me because of this serpent, for she thought that it should be awakened.

Her problem was that she was not on earth.

She was only intuitive, entirely without a sense of reality.

She was living in a secret brothel without being aware of it; she did not hear her own steps and had never seen her body.

She dreamed that she was inside or on top of balloons, from which I had to shoot her down.

One day she came and said that the serpent in her belly had moved; it had turned around.

Then the serpent moved slowly upward, coming finally out of her mouth, and she saw that its head was golden.

This is the shortest Kundalini path of which I have heard.

To be sure, it was not experienced but only intuited; but already this had a curing effect for the time being.

This case is a simple example of the spontaneous appearance of the Kundalini.

I got to know about the cakras only later, but even then I did not say anything about it, so as not to disturb the process in my patients.

The cakras are symbols for human levels of consciousness in general.

Ethnically and psychologically we can distinguish three different psychical localizations, of which the first corresponds more or less to Muladhara-svvdhiŸ¡hana, the second to manipura and anahata, and the third to visuddha and Ajna.

The psychology of the lower centers is analogous to the one of primitives—unconscious, instinctive, and involved in participation mystique.

Life appears here as an occurrence, so to speak, without ego.

One is not aware that one wants or does things; everything happens as it were in the third person.

The next localization is in the region of the diaphragm, thus Manapura-anahata, with oscillations up and down, above and beneath the diaphragm.

Beneath the diaphragm, all occurrence is self-evident.

In manipura is the emotional human being, who again and again is inundated and becomes constantly the victim of his passions.

Only above the diaphragm is it: I want. In the heart—anahata—is the first notion of the self, of the absolute center, the substance to which life is related.

This notion of the self is the flame in anahata.

Here the rational functions start. We have figures of speech that still now express this.

We say “cross my heart,” or we beat our chest when we refer to ourselves.

The Pueblo Indian thinks in his heart, as does the Homeric person, whose spirit is located in the diaphragm (Phren—the emotional and thinking soul).

Our psychical localization is admittedly in the head, but the gesture is still archaic, and when emotions become involved, our psychology slips down to manipura.

But most of the time we do not notice this.

We believe ourselves to live in the ajna center; we are convinced that we are masters in our own home.

But if we believe that our thoughts are our epiphenomenology and that we have had them, we all too easily forget how often our thoughts have us.

By thinking that psyche and brain are identical we become godlike, but our emotions bring the lower centers in us again into effectiveness.

In history we can also watch the Kundalini process.

First the belly-consciousness of the primitive developed, and he only noticed what set heavy on his belly or in his stomach.

Paul still said, “The belly is your God.”

Then the diaphragm-consciousness of the Homeric person developed, and he felt his emotions.

This was expressed in states of respiratory tension and in changes in the heartbeat.

Only the modern Western person has noticed that the head can also be affected.

Before that, it had not been much more than a button on a feeling body.

How much this was really the case, we can see clearly in the representations of humans on the rock paintings of Negroes, which Leo Frobenius, for example, has reproduced in his book Erythräa.

You will find images there of humans with extraordinarily long bodies on which,

to some extent very small, or by way of suggestion, human or animal heads are placed.

Only the contemporary person can say: “Now I am thinking.”

The visuddha center expresses the word, and what surpasses this would be the center of abstraction.

I would like to point to one more important analogy.

In all cases which involve such symbols, we may not forget the course of the sun as a main motive.

The analogy to Kundalini is the sun serpent, which later in Christian mythology is identified with Christ.

The twelve disciples are thought of as stations of the annual cycle supported by the zodiac serpent.

All these are symbols for the change of the creative power.

In Muladhara is the night sun, and beneath the diaphragm the sunrise.

The upper centers starting from anahata symbolize the change from midday up to sunset.

The day of sun is the Kundalini passage—ascent and descent—evolution and involution with spiritual signs.

The course of the sun is the analogy to the human life course.

The cakras, moreover, are, like all symbolic step formations, also the steps of mysteries, where the beginner steps into the dark (katabasis) and comes up again as deus sol via seven steps, as Apuleius describes it in The Golden Ass.

The greatest difficulties for my comprehension were caused by the god in Bindu and Sakti.

With us, the anima always first appears so grotesque and banal that it is difficult to recognize the Sakti in it.

But then, what is God?

He is the pale reflection of the ever-invisible central god in bija, which one cannot grasp, who is like the rabbit which the hunter never hunts down.

That is the self—incomprehensible, because it is bigger than the ego.

This self has a faint reminiscence in us—that is the god in Bindu.

The god in Bindu is our relation to the self, the will in the ego, the daimon, which forces us through need to take the path—the small individual god—the inner Siva. ~Carl Jung, Kundalini Yoga Seminar, Appendix II, Page 79-87