Analysis of “The Kundalini Kid” as an Emblematic Former Life
By Bardo Mountjoy, for The Bardo Mountjoy Saga
2 March 2009
In Chapter 10, the final chapter, of Roger Woolger’s seminal book on the benefits of looking at one’s former lives, Other Lives, Other Selves (1978), Woolger reports on a client’s similar spiritual martyrdom as the one I related in “The Kundalini Kid” that happened to me around the time of Jesus. This person, Woolger calls him Saul, like Jesus, is a former Essene who leaves the community, becomes a wandering teacher and healer, attracts followers, and is eventually seized and ritually killed by a group acting on orders from the local chieftain. The person has his hands and feet cut off, and then is beheaded. His “spirit” separates from his body at death, looks down in horror at the body below, then begins to ascend upward. When the martyred man’s “spirit” has the “thought” of “Why did this happen to me?” he receives an “answer” from what he intuits are spiritual masters who are present nearby:
They cut off your hands because you were out of touch.
They cut off your feet because you walked above the ground.
They cut off your head because it was too full of lofty ideas.
I share this because the “lessons” of our lives, and our former lives, are seldom pleasant, easy to decipher, or perfect cause-and-effect consequences of the Law of Karma.
I feel the former life I relate as “The Kundalini Kid” shares remarkable themes and patterns with my current life—themes and patterns that are resolving themselves as Parkinson’s disease (PD). Thus I consider the “kundalini kid” life (as psychic M.H. called it) as emblematic of my current life, an important “overlay” of it—one can see the former life as providing a pattern or structure for this one.
Here we go….let me start with themes, traits, and characteristics I share with the Kundalini Kid (KK):
1. Being fascinated and intrigued by energy and light—especially in the body—from phosphenes (the light we see when our eyes are closed), to tingles and energy currents felt in the body, to the colors and energy associated with chakras, to the energy of healing, to seeing (and understanding) “the secret alphabet of light.” The Kundalini Kid (KK) learns much more about light and energy than I presently know (unless this knowledge is buried deep inside my unconscious as a kind of “deep wisdom.” KK learns about light and energy from seeing the “root language” script of the Torah as golden flashes of light, from his communion with God, from his inner kundalini experience (but note it was backward—normally kundalini flows from sacrum up to crown—the opposite happened to KK), from his time in the Essenic community, from his wandering life as healer, and, finally, from his experience of death (with its transcendent component). I long for and get little glimpses of these experiences now—but my impaired spine (cervical damage, curvature, spondylosthesis at L2-L3, and locked sacrum)—has largely blocked any big stuff—like kundalini current.
2. Being partially initiated into esoteric knowledge and lore. KK was initiated by his own direct encounter with God, by the Essenes, and by his own his own calling as wandering ascetic healer. I am considered to be deeply wise, a “solar initiate,” and have always been attracted to secret lore which I take in and understand with relative ease. These days I am learning energy alchemy with Jim Self, more about astrology, more about earth changes and “ascension,” more about the importance of indigenous traditions as explicated by spiritual “walk-ins” like Drunvalo Melchizedek, shamanism, and many forms of healing work, just to name some of the esoteric lore that attracts me.
3. Being a loner, an outcast destined (doomed) to wander the earth, not fitting in, misunderstood, exiled, aloof, feeling shame. KK was exiled from his family, his community, the Essenes, and from society as a whole. I was “set apart” in my family and worked hard to bring love and light in and to “burn” ancestral karma. My several “nervous breakdowns” set me apart from university life and, to some extent, from a career in society. I have always felt apart, belonging nowhere, feeling little security, working hard (in my mind) to hold on. Parkinson’s, of course, absolutely sets me apart—I struggle along like an unhealed infant or an escaped psycho from some ward or a torture victim in his last throes. PD makes you feel so alone you pray just to die (ask any PDer.)
4. Being paranoid, feeling that people are “out to get you” in some ways. KK, of course, lost his family, left his spiritual brotherhood, wandered alone in the desert, and was martyred—he earned his paranoia! I was diagnosed several times at age 18 and 19 as “paranoid” in the psychiatric care I received. I continue to feel frozen and awkward in social situations that call for dancing and singing (I intuit that I was tortured in a former life in the presence of dancing / dancers).
At the root I am lost from my own lack of self-love, which arises from my samskaras (karma at birth that follows you into your life and must be dealt with), birth trauma, infancy trauma, parental mental abuse, pain taken on from my mother, and ancestral darkness going back six or seven generations. Every day I stay alive I feel like I am burning karma for my soul and for my ancestors—since this process is such a great mystery it only fuels my paranoia. My PD makes me feel like an ogre—more paranoia!
5. Being someone with a special relationship with God. This certainly applies to KK—his whole life proceeded from his divine communion / connection to God starting at age 13. In my case I have always sought out a personal, spiritual connection to God—not an institutional one. This personal, spiritual connection has taken the form of retreats into nature, love affairs (in Goethe’s famous pronouncement—“woman is that which guides us upward”), searching for that perfect commune of like-minded (hippy) spirits, special practices like yoga and meditation and Breathwork, a library of books that try to explain how and why we are one with God. I view PD as slow-motion death that clearly points to having a special understanding of God—sadly, though, my assurance on this point is subject to an almost manic-depressive moodiness!
6. Being ashamed. In KK’s story I intuit that he felt shame from his deafness, his exile, and his aloneness. In Breathwork I have relived a few moments of this when KK is near death—he is trying to flee from the crowd of his tormentors, hobbling on his left leg that is missing its foot, leaving a trail of blood in the dirt, feeling hopeless pain, humiliation, and shame. For me now, as my walking is worsening into more of a hobble (my left foot lacks feeling and is getting “deader and deader”), I feel more and more ashamed to be in public—shaking and hobbling like some torture victim on his “last legs.”
7. Being someone who bears the unbearable. KK was filled with the connection to God that his Kundalini moment provided him, but his life after that was hard by anyone’s standards and ended in an agonizing death. Similarly, this life for me has provided great pain—nervous breakdowns, cluster headaches, isolating paranoia—and is now being capped with PD with its random assortment of tremors, stiffness, loss of bodily control, slow physical incapacitation, slow mental incapacitation—I try to “bear up” under what is increasingly unbearable (ask anyone with PD!).
8. Being someone afraid to fall. KK began his challenging life of Godly service in the late Piscean Age with a momentous fall backwards off his chair at age 13—he did fall. PDers spend their time while up and moving around trying NOT to fall—this, for me, worsens nearly daily.
9. Being someone tortured and ignored. No one rallied to save KK as he was tortured to death. He—and his life—were ignored. As I’ve said, PD is like slow torture—and the usual response by both its victim and its onlooker is (stoic, embarrassed, unfathomable) denial.
10. Being someone so in his head that his body can’t move. In KK’s case, his religious connection to God led to the murder of his body by a presumably enraged, misunderstanding mob. In PD “freezing” is the ultimate trajectory for the loss of dopamine—this occurs when the body doesn’t respond at all to the mind’s lead—one is frozen amid-step or wherever one is (ask anyone with advanced PD!). (So far I have only experienced twinges of this—but it’s in the general forecast.)
11. Being someone dedicated to Love and its power. Once KK had his communion with God, he was forever thereafter charged with the grandeur of Love and its message of transcendental power. For me PD in all its horror is a process that teaches Love in all its Power!
12. Being someone who was once an Essene. KK leaves the Essenes, but has absorbed much of their teachings and practices (see “More about the Essenes”). He was a celibate monastic who remained alone (and no doubt celibate) in his wandering life. He “mortified his flesh” in his harsh, solitary asceticism. He was a “Therapeuta”—a healer in the Essene tradition. And like the Essene community member known as the “Messiah of Israel” or “Teacher of Righteousness,” he “suffered physical abuse [and death] in atonement for the sins of the entire community” (again, see “More on the Essenes).
So, there you have at least 12 big themes, traits, and characteristics that parallel the KK life and my own. For me, then, the KK life becomes an emblematic narrative that goes a long way to explaining my current “process” with PD. That life is still in my cellular memory. Its issues—and especially its trauma—are “up” for me now to “integrate,” to make conscious, to “release” in this life.
We are now (officially) in the Aquarian Age—where soul progress no longer requires physical suffering here on earth (hooray!). Probably the disease of PD is the “shadow work” required to integrate the lessons of the KK life (and, of course, other former lives—which I shall also speak about in later pieces).
Here, then, is a list of the “personality archetypes” that I see emerging from the “emblematic” KK life:
1. Spiritual Martyr—one killed for his spiritual beliefs
2. “Wrecna” (Old English for “wretched one”)—a community outcast
3. Desert Hermit—a loner searching for his own path to God
4. The “Hanged Man” (of the Tarot)—one who martyrs his body in pursuit of spiritual knowledge
5. Chiron—the Wounded Healer
6. The Initiate—one chosen to learn spiritual truths from a community of adepts
7. The Celibate—one cut off (for varied reasons) from natural communion with the opposite sex
8. The Scapegoat—one “ritually killed” for the supposed betterment of the community
No doubt, there are other archetypes, too.
In closing, I refer back to the opening on this piece—no doubt, there is harsh and often hard to comprehend justice to our sojourns in “earth school” where we learn to Love in the “great mystery” of our lives.