"How can I feel the chakras?"

Dear friends,

One of my yoga students asked me the question:
"How can I feel the chakras?"
It prompted me to write a short article about it, which you can find on my blog (see my signature, below).
I thought it might be of interest to some of you.

With love,


1 Like

Dear Friend,
Thank you for your invitation to read your article. If you think that your article would be interesting to some of the members here, would you please add your blog post here as a post too?


Hi Nichole,
I’m not sure what you mean? I’d be happy to add an article here, but do you mean as a normal post, or as an article?

So glad that you will add it here too – thank you for this! It really adds to community building to have our members add their offerings – as it’s possible – to the conversation here, rather than to send member off the forum to get the “goodies.”

You can just copy and paste it as a regular post. Here is an example of that. You can add the corresponding hyperlinks to this, and to all of your posts here, and they will all become live once you meet your new member threshold.

Thank you again for sharing your writing with us!

With hands together,

Ok, I got it. I’ll check the links and give you some articles here. I’m all for community, and of all the yoga forums I’ve been to (admittedly, not many) this seems like the most community oriented.

Ok, here is the post that I linked to… if you’d like to read more aricles like this, visit the blog in my signature. I will contribute some articles more from time to time to this forum too.
With love, Ben

[B]ENERGY: my personal experience of chakras and kundalini.[/B]

I was recently asked by one of my yoga students the following question:
[I]“What can I do to feel the chakras?”[/I]
Great question!

First let me tell you about my personal experience of chakras and energy:

I studied yoga for about 5 years, going quite deeply into the physical aspects of yoga (exercises and breathing). Later I also began to meditate, and had immediate transcendental experiences of ‘stopping the mind’. I then took a very intensive Teacher Training course (Sivananda organization). Then, two years later, I took the advanced Teacher Training course, and immediately afterwards began to experience (very strongly) the rising of the Kundalini energy, which lasted for about 72 hours.

I’m aware that to most people the term ‘Kundalini energy’ probably doesn’t mean much, so let me explain:
The human body has a subtle aspect to it that we can call the energy body. It’s as though the physical body wears an invisible glove, and that invisible glove is not only around the physical body, but also inter-penetrates it. The energy body consists of many thousands of ‘Nadis’ (the Chinese call them ‘meridians’). According to the Vedas, (ancient yogic scriptures) there are 72,000 of these nadis, or energy pathways, in the body.
So the energy body consists of these pathways, through which the energy flows, as well as the chakras, through which the pathways themselves flow.

There are many chakras (the word chakra means wheel, or junction) – but there are seven main ones:

1 the root chakra (at the perineum)
2 the second chakra (between the hips)
3 the solar plexus chakra
4 the heart chakra (in the middle of the chest – not at the physical heart)
5 the throat chakra (at the base of the throat)
6 the third eye (the space between the eyebrows)
7 and the crown chakra (at the top of the head).
(You can see the main chakras, and also some of the nadis, by clicking on the picture - [I]blog only[/I])

One of the aims of yoga is to awaken a dormant energy called Kundalini (which is said to lie curled up sleeping at the base of the spine like a snake) and to raise it up through the chakras. As it goes higher and higher, various abilities are awakened, evolution is quickened, and finally enlightenment is achieved when the kundalini goes up through the crown chakra. The rising of the kundalini is actually a totally natural process: it will happen to all of us, at some point of our development. It is another way of describing the process of evolution towards self-realisation.

Note: this is only one way to achieve enlightenment. There are many ways. You don’t have to focus on energy, or chakras, or yoga, or anything else. This is just a ‘roadmap’ that was left behind by the ancient yogis to help anyone who felt inclined to use it… like me!

In our modern society, our awareness tends to be very ‘gross’ – meaning very dull and material based. In ancient times people were much more oriented towards feeling rather than thinking for example, so they were more aware of this subtle aspect of themselves. Nowadays, we are not… hence the question “how can I feel my chakras?”

To answer the question:
There is a very important pre-requisite to feeling the flow of energy, let alone the chakras: you have to be totally relaxed. Tension and stress block energy. You simpy cannot feel it if you are physically or mentally tense.
Many beginners to yoga (by which I mean people who have only been practicing for a few years!) have simply not yet mastered relaxation enough to be able to focus on the more subtle aspects of energy and chakras. To give you an idea of how relaxed you need to be: think of a cat!

However, once we get to the point where we are able to fully relax, and to feel more, we become gradually aware of this subtle aspect of ourselves, and can come to know our energy body. We begin to feel the flow of energy! Usually it feels like a cool breeze, or a warm tingling sensation, or perhaps a vibration. It feels at the same time physical and non-physical, and that is how you know that it really is ‘energy’.
Once you feel it, you can focus your attention on it, and it gradually becomes more a part of your awareness. In my case, it took many years to achieve this (but I know that occasionally people are quicker).
As you become slowly more and more aware of the energy, you sense that it flows in certain ways, and that in some parts of your body it is stronger. Usually the place where you feel it more strongly is the chakra. The chakra feels like a ‘vortex’; like a whirlpool of energy. You should be aware that everyone feels them in slightly different places - so don’t ‘look’ for them. It is better to find them organically (without much effort).

So, to summarise: learn to relax fully; learn to ‘feel’ more and more subtly; finally, focus your attention on the feeling of energy, and learn to follow it’s flow.

In addition:

  • diet is highly important: you are what you eat. If you eat dense heavy food - meat, processed food, too much cooked food - then it will be very hard to access the more subtle vibrational body. If you want to experience a higher vibration, you have to eat more fresh, raw, organic foods. (I will soon be writing an article on proper diet). A certain level of purity within the physical body is necessary before the subtle energy can be felt.
  • the body has to be in good condition, and the more you practice energetic exercises like yoga, tai chi, chi kung, and so on, the more the physical body comes into ‘alignment’ with the energy body.
  • breathing exercises stimulate the flow of energy (the yoga breathing exercises are called Pranayama, which literally means “control of the energy”). Of course, you should first make sure that you know how to breathe properly.

Warning: it is well known that trying too hard to ‘speed up’ this process can be harmful. I have heard of people who really lost their minds by coming into contact too early with Kundalini energy. It is extremely powerful, and if you are not ready, it can make you feel as if you are completely out of control. In my case, here’s what happened:

I was in the Bahamas, where I was living and working in an Ashram, having just completed my advanced teachers’ training. One afternoon, I began to experience what can only be described as ‘rushes’ of energy going up my spine - exactly the same feeling as an intense rising orgasm, causing a kind of ‘ripple effect’ through my body. At first it was very pleasurable! Apart from the physical pleasure, I was also very satisfied because I felt that this experience symbolised progress in my spiritual practice. But after a few hours I began to feel very restless. After a sleepless night, I was getting uncomfortable and feeling mentally exhausted and disturbed; and after two days I really wanted it to stop!!
I was lucky - by focusing my intention, I was able to gradually slow down the rising kundalini. I didn’t feel that I was ready for the experience I was having, so I delayed it. The reason I was able to do that is because I was very experienced. Many people have not been so lucky - there are ‘kundalini clinics’ which have been established purely with the aim of treating people who have lost control of their lives, after prematurely raising the kundalini. So be careful!

That was in 2003. Since then I feel the occasional ripple! I feel the kundalini rising, but more slowly. I know that it’s better that way: it’s always better to go too slow, than too fast. Take things one step at a time, don’t rush. The journey is just as important as the destination, and our progress must be balanced, otherwise there will always be a ‘kickback’.
Relax deeply, and all will go as it should. Relaxation is the foundation upon which everything good is built.
As a very wise man once said:
“just relax and enjoy!”

Hi Ben,

I have one doubt in raising kundalini.

What do you think, you will get. if you raise your kundalini to sahasrara or crown chakra ?

I heard many people used to say we will become united with nature or part of nature’s energy. Means your body is no longer exist.

Are You practicing your kundalini yoga for the same purpose ?

If yes, why you want to become like that ?


Hi Karthik,
There is no ‘getting’ in raising Kundalini. It’s a natural process; part of who we are.
Your body still exists, but your attachment to it is less.
That’s scary for many people, because it threatens the ego. But when you raise your kundalini these fears and doubts and questions are gone, because what is left is just pure joy; bliss.
I am not practicing yoga for any reason other than that it makes me feel good.
With love, Ben

For me, I dont do what most do here on this site in terms of asanas, but I am aware when there is something wrong with the chakras, or at least I have been so far.
You can sense it or even feel it. You can develop illnesses in the areas where the unbalanced chakras are if you dont attend to them in time. As I discovered. The important thing is to trust yourself in what you sense. Thats not easy to do, trust yourself.

If your ida & pingala are not adequately balanced before the commencement of formal yoga practice, then i reckon attending to this and making it a priority in the first instance would be sensible idea. If you didn’t attend to this and there was a slight imbalance before starting yoga it could exaggerate or exacerbate any existing imbalances. Once your ida & pingala are nicely balnced, chakras will open naturally as well as sushumna and kundaliini(the divine intelligence or mysterious force behind this potential energy) will be irresistably drawn upwards- the rising will be safe and sound & smooth.Not making this a first priority might not guarantue a safe sushumna and kundalini rising awakening, i.e it could result in a difficult &/or challenging road ahead (although not neceesarily; they might be already balance enough or you just get lucky).Many of the credible systems out there do lay some emphasis or give some importance to it. Just look here for more info:-


The stages are broken down here and the dynammics explained.Swami Satyananda Sarswati in his book ‘Kundalini Tantra’ also talks about it and gives no smal emphasis to it.I’m preety sure you’d find the point brought up again and again within say that book alone just to re-inforce it.Many of the basic pranayamas should be enough to address it if done over long enough timescales as changes are accepted,the nadis adequately purified.

iF you add in meditation with pranayama and light asanas then this wil help stabilise the results, i.e effects of the pranayama and enable you to better detach from the process as it is occuringby fostering inner silence. Just watching the inner silence can be enough for this purpose, as a meditation technique.All you doo there is- find a comofrtable postion, in a seat or upright in a meditation pose,close your eyes ,try to relax the whole body incl. the presure at the temples & eyes.If you wish to turbo charge this or make it more potent you could silnetly meditiate on Om or any mantra divinely revealed or given by a guru or one scientifically trialled and approved perhaps(i.e according to yogic “spiritual” science).

There are practices that can work directly on individual chakras & indeed sushumna. But if ida & pingala are not balnced enough or your mind is unstable or noisy, i.e one thought naturally & quickly moves to another(that is probably a great deal of us from what i can observe and infer;‘normal’ life conditions us that way unless we rouitnely meditate sucessfully) , then either nothing much miight happen or it’s going to be a lot diifcult, potentially slower and may not yeild optimal results for everybody practicing it.A universally sounder & more successful aproach for everyone would be to address the balance of ida & pingala as first priority certainly if this merits adressing.I would just prescribe it for everyone because they may work th chakras incl. the third-eye and even sushumna and make rather slow progress, that’s if their goal is to awaken sushumna and kundalini; allow it to rise.

Some people that just give the focus to working with energy it has been said can end up with same ego, i.e it does’nt suddenly dissolve as some might be thinking,( not that the ego i believe ever really goes away;i think this is pretty naive thinking; we just train ourselvles in identifying with it somewhat less) ,and it may not be the most successful approach so a balanced practice that includes some kind of meditation or quiet silent period(does’nt need to be technical-keep it simple! less IS more) just with the eyes shut (basically doing nothing but with awareness,relaxed & easy!) would be a safer approach especially to cultivate the calm quiet mind that will help with the kundalini awakening process.Just watching the silence allows you to detach as well as recognise the subtle effects as prana is allowed to flow more freely and the subtle bodies open up.

You mayl feel the prana often in an unpurified system, i think,freq. as tiny little currents that can be felt flowing particualrly in areas of previous obstruction or indeed anywhere where the energy is being moved. How do we recognise it? It is very subtle but it just comes with practice & experience.It’s not that difficult. Some experiences are rather profound & bigger; i said here before if you get a big opening say like in the suhumna or a chakra it may feel like you’ve just consumed stimulants or feel rather drunk.Typically you will get third-eye activity, master control centre, whenever, i think the energy may be moving and stirrring.It is felt like sensations at the forehead although they say it’s supra-sensible.The manipura belly burns the fire of impurities and can be quite noticeable and can be quite balancing.BUt to me it just makes sense both from experience and combined with what i’ve read that if ida & pingala are not adequately balanced that you do some things to adress this.

Hi Ben,

Thanks. I’m just confused why people want to raise thier chakra’s or to attain nirvana.

Is that what every one’s destiny. I mean the purspose of birth.

May be as you said , with my level of thinking( Kundalini at basic level) its not able realize the system of energy interaction.


HI Karthik,
Yes it is everyone’s destiny; yours too.
We are all evolving beings. Our destiny is to fully realize our essence, which is divine.
Human being is like half animal half god, although really there is no difference - only we are able to be aware of our divine-ness.
With love, Ben

ps - why people want to attain nirvana? Ultimate happiness

Hi Ben,

Let us say , If everyone reached their destiny or attained ultimate happiness. What next then. Will the living system ends and become void like other planets ?

Don’t mistake me as just i’m opposing your thoughts.

I strongly believe that our present world with its invention, technology and concept of money is traveling in a wrong path. We are strongly bonded to selfish thoughts( My family, my money, My wife etc.etc). I have the feeling that we are not born. just to eat , sleep , talk, be happy/enjoy( what ever mind say so) and die one day with XYZ name. Our birth definitely has some purpose. So called destiny. I thought may be practice of kundalini yoga may help to realize the same.

Since you are practicing , I would like to know your thoughts.



I already told you :wink:


The first thing to achieve is the purity of your nadis (pranic channels), as chakras are among other things, prana vortexes. Do an hour of nadi shodhana pranayama daily, until you clearly feel currents of prana running through your trunk. This might take more than one year.
Once achieved this you could try activating your chakras through Kundalini Yoga. I’m experienced with the Kundalini Tantra of the Saraswati lineage (it worked).

Hope it helped.

Hi Panoramix,

Good to hear you made good progress with that particular system.I agree with what you say.I believe that is a sound & effective to go about it- you could get some flow first & balance ida & pingala with nadi shoodhana, nadi purification.An effective approach is to use many or all the teechniques at your disposal, i.e what i mean by that is all of yoga, all the limbs, of course.

It does take time and patience though like you suggest.

Namaskar core789,

It’s been a while!
How’s your chakra work going on?

Namaste Panoramix,

It’s going alright. I was working with Kundalini Tantra for about 3 months solid, then over 6 month or more I lost a bit of momentum with that apporach but i still uitlize and draw on those techniques as my chakras are still not clear.Instead i’m using a range of pranayamas and techniques.I do use them though now & again, I have practically most of the main text books within the Satyananda library. I just acquired the companiion volume to the title ‘Kundalini Tantra’- ‘Kriya & Yoga : 36 Tantric Lessons…’ and have looked at their myriad and dedicated comprehensive approach.I’ve just been exploring all the ins & outs of pranayama.I don’t think my ida & pingala is quite balanced enough.I combine that with meditation,relaxation and an eclectic mix of asana and hatha yoga.It’s fun & re-assuring having all these tools.I think you’ve made more progress with me using that apporach. Living on a retreat might not be a bad idea.

I think i lose my momentum sometimes. Navigating the dilemmas of self-pacing. I think when the firewroks go hopefully they don’t goo all at once. Did you have gradual openings or more marked progression using some of those methods.?

I’d like to be at a stage where i don’t expect results but they come anyway.But i think i’ve got there to some extent anway. It just takes time , patience & application.

It’s like waking up a sleeping ogre, giant otherwise normally fast or deeply-asleep? It can just goo off and then you’re decide how to pace. I notice in that book i tells you to practice regularly but does’nt really cover the notion of pacing or talk about that when things stir and open.

Patience and perseverance, yeah, the road to success.

As to me, finally i’ve ended up activating Ajna and Vishuddhi and performing the basic Kriya Yoga exercise more or less properly. It has taken three years but the fruits worth much!

I’m starting the second part of the Kundalini Tantra soon.

We’ll get in touch.


Are they the 21 kriyas?

I know i’ll get there eventually.i got the first 2 and ajna but stalled alittle in terms of making it daily sadhana.Instead i’m focusing my efforts more on learning basic pranayama along with using other practices i’m familiar with and which i may be inclined to practice.

Swami Nischalananda or any one familiar with the full scope of Satyananda yoga would be a good point of contact to get a green light if you wanted or felt the re-assurance would be good or
just to err on the side of caution…