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When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together. And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were. Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim. Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven staying in Jerusalem. At this sound, they gathered in a large crowd, but they were confused because each one heard them speaking in his own language. They were astounded, and in amazement they asked, “Are not all these people who are speaking Galileans? Then how does each of us hear them in his native language? We are Parthians, Medes, and Elamites, inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the districts of Libya near Cyrene, as well as travelers from Rome, both Jews and converts to Judaism, Cretans and Arabs, yet we hear them speaking in our own tongues of the mighty acts of God.”
Acts 2: 1-11
The Holy Spirit and Kundalini
In the Pentecost narrative, the Holy Spirit is depicted as something outside of us, coming down upon the disciples, as if from the heavens. The purpose of the Holy Spirit, as described in this narrative, is to empower the disciples to live fully out of their unique spiritual gifts (here described as speaking in tongues) in service to God and for the betterment of the world. The Holy Spirit empowers them to act in ways beyond what they might have previously thought possible.
In the Hindu and Yogic traditions, there is a similar kind of empowering energy and experience known as Kundalini. Kundalini is thought to be the seed of our potential, carrying within it our unique giftedness and call to service. As we grow and mature spiritually, the Kundalini is awakened and empowers us to live our potential to its fullest. The difference between Kundalini and the Holy Spirit, as it is depicted in the Pentecost narrative, is that Kundalini resides within us and eventually explodes out of the top of our head as opposed to coming into the top of our head from outside of us. I often wonder if Kundalini and the Holy Spirit are not in fact one and the same.
How have you become aware of a spiritual awakening happening in you?
How have you supported this spiritual awakening?
Spiritual Practices – Welcoming the Holy Spirit
Set aside 20-30 minutes to enter into this meditation practice. You will need your computer or personal music device to access the music that will be used in this practice.
- Sit in silence. Begin your practice with a personal prayer/request/statement of intention that your desire is to welcome the Holy Spirit – to be open to awakening the Holy Spirit’s within (or outside) of you. In stating this intention, you are agreeing to accepting the gifts the Spirit wishes to awaken and empower in you.
- Listen to the following song, Veni Sancte Spiritus, from the Taize community: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eaet60_DuFY
- As you are listening, imagine that the Holy Spirit is either coming down upon you, or awakening from the center of your belly and arising within you.
- Listen to the song a second time and repeat the visualization if you feel so called.
- Be attentive to any physical, emotional or mental sensations you may experience during the meditation.
- Record your thoughts and reflections in a journal or notebook.
“Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”
(1 Cor 3: 17)
In the Epilogue to Authentic Freedom, we speak of the process of discernment. Discernment is the process we use to distinguish the voice of Truth (God) from the voice of our ego. The primary distinction between God and ego is concisely articulated by Paul in his first letter to the Corinthians. Truth leads us to freedom. Freedom, however, is not something that is measured outside of us, but is known in an inner experience of expansiveness. Freedom leads us to love, peace, joy, contentment and fulfillment. Freedom is known in a life where there is meaning and purpose through which we are freely and generously sharing our own unique giftedness in service to God for the betterment of the world. This is Authentic Freedom.
How are you experiencing the freedom that is your Divine heritage?
Where are you experiencing this freedom as being constricted?
What are the fears that are causing you to live a life that is anything less than free?
“To what shall we compare the kingdom of God,
or what parable can we use for it?
It is like a mustard seed that, when it is sown in the ground,
is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth.
But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants
and puts forth large branches,
so that the birds of the sky can dwell in its shade.”
With many such parables
he spoke the word to them as they were able to understand it.
Without parables he did not speak to them,
but to his own disciples he explained everything in private.