Q16: Do you have a soul? How do you know? How do you learn to listen to it without using foreign substances or subjecting yourself to any unhealthy practice?

Do you have a soul? How do you know? How do you learn to listen to it without using foreign substances or subjecting yourself to any unhealthy practice?
Do you have a soul? This depends on how you define “soul”. Do you have a spark of life in you? Do you have some sort of inner guidance that leads you to what, instinctively, feels right for you? Then, yes, I would think you have a soul. Some folk find that this reservoir of knowledge and guidance can become very burdensome; but even those who have been taught there is nothing else other than the physical body, have an unconscious knowledge of something bigger than Self; those who have experienced extreme lovelessness, have an instinctive recognition of kindness and beauty; those who would to anything to avoid confrontation, have an instinctive desire to defend themselves, or someone else who needs protection.

As we grow in age, develop and mature, the chakras interpret and hold the information we learn. Each chakra resonates closely with maturity-applicable experience. Imagine if you will a simple ladder which we climb, rung by rung. To climb this ladder you have to step on each rung, find you footing, get your balance, and then use it to hold your weight as you climb to the next rung. One seldom runs up a ladder, missing rungs altogether. You risk a hard fall. And so it is with the development of chakras. There are many milestones we reach as we grow. Each new experience gives the opportunity to learn and to express, and the more we allow this to happen, the clearer we hear. This, in essence, raises our level of vibration, raises our awareness and raises our expectation of ourselves. This force draws the energies upwards – as all our experiences are directed toward understanding and releasing the unwanted baggage we carry.

First you learn to walk, and then maybe learn to ride a bike, maybe progress to a scooter, then with great joy you get a battered old car you love out of all proportion to its monetary value. After an appropriate number of upgrades, you may get to drive a vehicle that has a turn of speed. By this time, hopefully, you will be able to handle the speed sensibly and sensitively. If you get behind the wheel of a fast car before you’re emotionally ready for it, disaster is sure to follow.

Each chakra is a step, and each step has to be secure before the next one can be reached. It is relatively easy to observe where people are stuck, or where they have not completely dealt with unfinished business. As I said, the chakras are the logbooks of the body; they hold a record of everything you have experienced, good and bad, complete and work-still-in-process.

To help this process there is a store of spiritual energy lying dormant in the base chakra. It is a force of great potential, which is generally awakened through spiritual practice and awareness. It has the power to link the levels of experience so that the soul’s mission may be accomplished. This force is known by the Sanskrit word Kundalini, and its great power requires appropriate respect. When the Kundalini is stimulated to rise, it assists in opening the chakras, so that information can increase understanding, and to therefore assist with the slow and steady soul evolution. In turn this Kundalini energy has to be balanced by slow and steady growth, or the uncontrolled force can cause great damage.

When the chakras have been developed in a systematic way, hand in hand with spiritual development, there is no problem in interpreting and using the new energies. This is not the case, however, if the chakras are opened artificially through abuse of substances or barely-understood ritual, or by choosing some other ‘short cut’. If the personality is not strong enough or sufficiently mature, this inrush of unfamiliar experience can be very frightening. This effect cannot occur if spiritual development is carefully monitored, using grounded common sense and respect.

Once we are in balance, and the pathway to the crown chakra is clear, the Kundalini may rise as a rush of energy up the spine. Various sensations occur, ranging from light-headedness to a state of at-oneness or bliss. Because this is unfamiliar, if we are unprepared, we react with fear.

This is why irresponsible dabbling or experimenting with esoteric practices is so dangerous. These experiences, if not understood, can be very frightening, and are often misunderstood as “possession”, curses, presence of evil influence, etc. The positive side of these can be empowering due to the increased understanding and clarity of thought, and the sensation is sought again and again. As this is often achieved using hallucinogenic substances or practices, this leads to over–use or abuse of them. The negative side, can, however, be devastating.
The same effect can be reached by slow and steady, responsible personal growth. I urge you to be patient and be willing to take responsibility for your development; be respectful and follow your own Inner Tuition.
Remember the story of the tortoise and the hare? The tortoise won the race by making slow steady progress. Be the tortoise.

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