Is the Kundalini Experience a Black Hole? Dr Manjir Samanta-Laughton
Whilst travelling the country giving talks, I often get asked how, as a medical doctor, I can talk so knowledgeably about esoteric subjects such as angels. It was not always the case; I used to be extremely skeptical of such things. All this changed in one pivotal moment when I experienced a kundalini awakening. So what is a kundalini awakening? Is there any scientific basis for this phenomenon? In this article we shall be exploring the concept of the kundalini experience, looking at the scientific evidence for its existence, as well as proposing a radical new explanation for the kundalini awakening by comparing it to a galactic black hole!
What is a Kundalini?
Kundalini is a Sanskrit word and comes from ancient Hindu traditions that date back thousands of years. Some interpretations indicate that it refers to a force that lies dormant and coiled up within the sacral bone of the spine until an awakening event occurs. It is usually seen a feminine, almost motherly energy and is often described as like a serpent. It is not a physical object as such, but exists in what is known as the subtle realms, sensed by people of mystical abilities.
Through spiritual practices such as meditation and yoga, the coiled energy can awaken and extend up through the spine to the top of the head. Hence the image of a snake and staff in many healing traditions representing this energy moving up the spine. Although not a physical process it is associated with physiological and physical symptoms. This is confirmed by the limited amount of scientific research that has been performed in this area.1 These range from common symptoms such as tingling or muscle pains through to full blown psychiatric emergencies.2 These are known as pathological kundalini symptoms which do not happen in every case. Some people, like myself, report a feeling of great connection to the wisdom of the universe and this can change their lives forever.
There have been few scientific studies to confirm such physiological changes although there are hints that electrical changes do happen in the brain and heart during a kundalini awakening experience.1 Even if it can be proved that physiological changes do occur during an awakening, does this bring us any closer to really understanding the scientific basis for kundalini?
In my book, Punk Science, I have explored the way in which ideas from the very cutting – edge of physics could explain some ancient esoteric ideas that have so far defied science. The book describes a new vision of the cosmos, one in which consciousness is fundamental to the universe, light travels at supraluminal speeds, antimatter is crucial to our existence and black holes are the source of infinite creation. Just in case this sounds all a bit like science fiction rather than fact, the book lists many references to cosmological data. In this article, we shall examine these cutting-edge scientific ideas and how they could help us to understand the kundalini phenomenon.
Hyperspace and the subtle realms
What exactly is a kundalini? How can a coiled serpent reside in the sacral bone? When the human body is dissected, no such kundalini is found? Isn’t this just a load of spiritual mumbo jumbo?
In the reductionist scientific paradigm, if something cannot be physically examined and dissected, it simply does not exist. The concept of kundalini awakening is therefore easily dismissed. However, there are many things in the new scientific era that do not fit this paradigm, yet they are part of the mainstream.
Take Superstring Theory or String Theory for example. This is currently one of the strongest contenders that physicists have for a theory of everything. This aims to unite all of the known forces and particles in the universe into one simple and elegant theory.3 String Theory states that everything in the universe is made up of tiny vibrating strings. All the forces and particles in the universe are created by the vibration of these tiny strings. However, they do not limit themselves to our world of three spatial dimensions and a fourth of time that we have known of since Einstein’s day. String Theory makes sense only if there are many dimensions to the universe: eleven or more in fact.
These higher dimensions open up new possibilities for our universe. Although they are hidden from view, they supposedly exist just next to our world and are just as complex as our dimension, if not more. The thing is, these higher dimensions have not been tested in any laboratory, dissected or even seen. Yet many physicists around the world are paid to discuss them at length because they are totally acceptable in the realms of mainstream science.
Can we use these principles of physics when discussing the kundalini experience and other esoteric phenomena? Could they exist in higher dimensions and is this why they are unable to be measured? Were ancient people somehow able to sense these realms and is this why they consistently described the same esoteric ideas such as kundalini? Perhaps it is time we considered the reality of the kundalini experience, especially if some awakenings result in acute hospital admissions.2 Maybe now that science includes concepts that look similar to esoteric ideas about subtle realms we can move towards an explanation of kundalini.
The double helix
Even if we do collate convincing evidence for physiological changes during a kundalini awakening, this does not explain the scientific mechanism behind the process itself. It has been described in many ancient texts as looking something like the diagram below (Figure 1). This is a pictorial representation of the kundalini experience. Although there are many different interpretations of this phenomenon, one common depiction is of two snakes that have risen up from the base of the spine to coil in a double helix around each other, flowing in and out of the seven chakras until they reach the crown chakra at the top of the head where they are traditionally seen as blossoming into a lotus flower. To the modern viewpoint this sounds fantastical, bearing no relation to the real world.
However, in the process of writing Punk Science, I noticed a striking resemblance between the kundalini experience and my own discoveries about the cosmos, namely the Black Hole Principle. In short this says that black holes, once thought to be the terrifying gobblers of the universe, are actually the creative heart of the universe. Backed up by the latest observations of the cosmos from astrophysics, I argue the case for the universe being filled with black holes at every level which emit periodic bursts of high energy rays.
Specifically, just as the kundalini energy is supposed to be emitted from the base of the spine as a double helix, we also witness black holes behaving in a similar fashion. It has been noted that emissions called synchotron radiation escape from black holes.4 This consists of an electron – a particle of matter and its mirror image particle of antimatter – a positron, spiraling around each other as they leave the galactic centre and annihilate (cancel each other out) forming light.
The diagram below (Figure 2) depicts this process schematically. The double spiral of matter and antimatter coiling out of the galactic central black hole certainly resembles the kundalini process.
Figure Two – The Emission of Spiralling Synchotron Radiation from the Central Black Hole of the Galaxy
Punk Science gives evidence for the Black Hole Principle being present at every level of the universe in the same infinite repeating pattern: a fractal. I argue that this repeated motif is apparent in everything from atoms to our very own chakras. The Black Hole Principle occurs within us at every level of our being.
I believe that the kundalini is another example of the Black Hole Principle in action. It is like a creative awakening of a galactic core within our very being. The release that occurs is also a double spiral as it moves up the spine. Often people having such an experience report a huge release of light. We even speak of the process being one of ‘enlightenment’. Could this be the result of antimatter and matter annihilating within our bodies causing photon release and the subjective experience of enlightenment?
Whatever your thoughts on kundalini – if you feel it exists or not, if you think it is to be feared or embraced, it has been known of for many thousands of years. The new scientific era is bringing some interesting research which points to the suggestion that a process is indeed occurring at the point of kundalini awakening that demonstrably affects physiology.
Even more tantalising, with the Black Hole Principle that is discussed in Punk Science, we may at last have the scientific explanation for kundalini awakening: it is an emission from a black hole. This gives us a new perspective on our own deep connections to the cosmos and the infinite reaches of the universe.
1. Arambula P, Peper E, Kawakami M, Gibney KH. The Physiological Correlates of
Kundalini Yoga meditation. Applied Physiology and Biofeedback. June 2001; 26: 147-153.
2. Savola M. Investigation and Diagnosis of 76 cases of Kundalini Arousal. Kundalini Network in Denmark. 1997. http://kundalini.se/eng/n_engkni_1024.html [cited August 1996]
3. Greene Brian. The Elegant Universe. (Random House) 2000.
4. Finkbeiner DP. WMAP Microwave Emission Interpreted as Dark Matter Annihilation in the Inner Galaxy. January 2005. http://www.arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0409027.