The Journey or the Destination

I am sometimes criticized for describing my book, Deciphering the Golden Flower One Secret at a Time as a comprehensive breakdown of secrets in The Secret of the Golden Flower (SGF). It’s not; it’s a memoir of my journey to self-discovery, during which, after long periods of floundering, I have the good fortune to come across the SGF and its method of meditation and the good sense to practice the meditation, whereby I now understand that:

"Self-realization begins at birth; it is the journey as much as it is the destination.”
Araminta Matthews

The internet is a public forum where off-the-wall meets cogent interpretation. Nonsense meets sense...and it's up to the reader, should he or she so desire, to evaluate the various positions, separate the wheat from the chaff. No matter how misguided or off the mark a criticism might be, there's always some element worthy of a response.

ArcataMarsh-1


In this case, it's a wholesale evaluation of the journey vs. the destination. Should the journey be considered part of the experience, in this case a Kundalini awakening? Does the effort to attain something count in the end result? Should the means enjoy the same weight as the ends? Beyond the fact that the journey is usually a humanizing experience, there's the ultimate question of: What is the destination? Miracles, super powers, bragging rights? Gopi Krishna had this to say:

A question was asked of Ramana Maharshi, 'Do you see spirits?' He said, 'Yes, in my dreams.' I would like to tell you something which is probably not known in the West, I mean especially to the younger generation. There is not a single mention of miracles in the Upanishads, which are the fountainhead of all metaphysical and spiritual thought in India. There is not a word in favor of miracles in the dialogues of Buddha; in fact he condemns them. Not a word about miracles in the Bhagavad Gita. Krishna condemns those who practice meditation to harm others or gain some worldly object for themselves, or in other words miracles. Not a word about miracles in the sayings of Ramakrishna, Raman, Sri Aurobindo, nor Swami Sivananda."

So if it isn't miracles, and we can surmise it isn't bragging rights, what is it? What is the destination? Gopi Krishna knew what it was, and so do I. It's greater consciousness, better decisions, better health, longevity, better self-control, knowledge that life and death are states of passage, a connection with the energy continuum. So does all this come with a Kundalini awakening, the moment it occurs?

No, it takes time. It did for me anyway. For Gopi Krishna, too — if you read his books.

And guess what? Some of it is gathered along the way, during the journey! Yes, it is. Through focus, through travail, through trial and error. Through becoming single-mined.

I never intended to do a line-by-line interpretation of The Secret of the Golden Flower. Why? Because there happens to be a lot of them already out there. From Carl Gustav Jung to Osho. I preferred to deal with the really important secrets in the context of how I discovered they were important and how I ultimately came to practice and master them. Namely, Diaphragmatic Deep Breathing and the Backward Flowing Method. Why take this approach?

Because people identify with the journey. If the struggle isn't real — doesn't lead the seeker through a series of dark night of the soul crises — can the process be authentic? Not if it isn't lived in its entirety. Because I didn't want a cloying mess that distracted from the vital elements of the book. 

Awakening Kundalini is akin to a crash landing. There is no way to be fully prepared, no guidebook. The greatest preparation, in fact, is the ability to improvise.

Imagine crashing a plane in unfamiliar territory. Right away, you have to find food, shelter and repair your equipment with only a limited toolset. A rush job with life and death stakes, and that kind of desperate mission requires a task-oriented personality. Take stock and get on with it. And don’t neglect intuition; it may save your life. Enough about theory, already. About idealizing the destination! It never works out like you think it will. There are years of coming to terms with an active Kundalini at work in your body, and you better learn the practical aspects of living with it and not yearn for some ecstatic state.

Hopefully, as the practice of advanced energy cultivation techniques proliferates in the future, raising Kundalini will become an everyday occurrence. Our race will make the next incremental leap in consciousness. But the method must be safe. Perhaps the current pioneering of disparate groups and individuals will prepare the groundwork for safe awakenings. It’s possible to avoid the pitfalls. That's why I concentrate on the vital techniques; I still update the method regularly, as new information comes in.

Chico Campus

No, your journey won't be the same as mine. Nor will its outcome. But the more journeys that are documented, the more understanding is brought to the whole endeavor. Especially when you realize that the end isn't so other-worldly, that it's not a question of magical powers. In acquiring the tools for the soul's long journey in order to shape-shift through the energy continuum, there's definitely work for more than one person.

Once again Gopi Krishna's farsighted assessment:

A few more confessions such as Alan Watts’, and a probe directed to the avowals of thousands of human beings who have had the unmistakable experiences of the Kundalini force are perhaps necessary to put open-minded and enterprising men and women of science on the trail of what is the greatest mystery of creation still lying unsolved and even unattended before us."

It's not an either - or. The two go together: The Journey and the Destination.

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