A new book by Gopi Krishna is a very special event.

He is unique among writers on the subject of higher consciousness because what he has to say is from his own direct experience. This fact is still too novel for the general public to realize the staggering implications.

In a modern world in which trendy transcendentalism of drugs or meditation techniques is a commodity exploited by self-appointed Gurus for their own vanity, when new cults spring up overnight with millions of followers attracted through publicity in the mass media or the self-deception of crowds rather than true spiritual insight, Gopi Krishna is virtually a lone voice in the tradition of the great sages and seers of ancient India.

He does not seek to establish new cults or a mass following, for he is a humble, absolutely sincere, and modest man. He is dedicated only to revealing the special insights gained by his own mystical experience of higher consciousness, the genuine transcendental state described by Yogis and saints thousands of years ago, an experience that has become legendary in modern times.

In his earlier book, Kundalini: The Evolutionary Energy in Man (Berkeley, California, 1970), Gopi Krishna described how he aroused the mysterious kundalini force, that secret power-reservoir in the human body, and achieved that mystical experience of higher consciousness that had become so rare as to be fabulous:

Suddenly, with a roar like that of a waterfall, I felt a stream of liquid light entering my brain through the spinal cord. . . . I felt the point of consciousness that was myself growing wider, surrounded by waves of light….

This sudden awakening of the secret kundalini force came about through the practice of Yoga, but he was not prepared for its fantastic onset. It endangered his health and even his life for many years, until he learned to live with it, modify its effects, and cooperate with the biological changes it brought about in his brain and body.

He writes, therefore, with absolute authority; and it is important for a modem world, bewildered by a breakdown in true values, to read and consider carefully all that he has to say. For here are genuine insights arising from an actual condition of higher consciousness. They are not the theories, wishful thinking, or rehashes of those who have never had such an experience. The condition of higher consciousness is so rare and truly transcendental that mankind cannot afford to ignore any single instance in modern times. We are privileged in being able to consider and verify its revelations from a living individual rather than from the records of the past in sacred scriptures.

Can one really believe this, in a world of false claims and charlatans? I can affirm that I know it to be true. I have always taken a special interest in the phenomenon of kundalini and have met several individuals in whom this extraordinary power has been aroused in some degree. I know Gopi Krishna personally and have had inspiring conversations with him in India. His work is supported by eminent scientists, and a Kundalini Research Foundation has been established. I can confirm that he is absolutely genuine and sincere.

He has a refreshing and touching humility. He has never concealed his wonder that destiny should have granted him this awakening into Cosmic Consciousness. He stresses that this experience, so immeasurably more profound and inspiring than normal consciousness and absolutely blissful in nature, is yet only a hint of still higher states. And he knows only too well that the immensities of consciousness and perception are sometimes too much for the mental and physical apparatus that tries to convey them in the inadequate medium of words in a printed book. He had no special advantages of birth or education. In his great inspiration the words tumble out at speed, and sometimes the command of a language not his own is inadequate to express the marvelous vistas of life and human destiny that have opened to his vision like a blaze of dazzling light. For he perceives always with full waking consciousness, unlike the passive trance of the spiritualist medium or the stupor of the drugtaker.

Some of his new awareness is so inconceivable to the consciousness of ordinary individuals that it is remarkable that he can find words to express himself at all. It is a situation rather like that of a great author forced to type at speed on an old and imperfect typewriter with a foreign keyboard! When the experience of Cosmic Consciousness or Superconsciousness becomes accessible to other individuals, as Gopi Krishna believes could happen soon, there will be many different accounts to confirm such insights. And it may be that great writers, poets, musicians, and scientists will be inspired to supplement these visions with all the eloquence and art with which they are already gifted.

Do not be put off by the unfamiliarity of terms like kundalini. There is unfortunately no real modern equivalent to this ancient Hindu science of the soul. Although originally surrounded with mythological concepts of the union of a god and goddess in terms of a complex Hindu metaphysical doctrine, it is now clear that there is a real biological basis for this extraordinary power center of latent energy within the human body and in the cosmos as a whole. This force is located at the base of the human spine, nourished by energy from food, air, ethical and spiritual development. It can be expressed in sexual activity or transmuted into a subtle form that rises up the spinal column to a center in the brain, enlarging the consciousness. The sudden spiral movement from the base of the spine has been called “The Serpent Power” by the ancients, and mythological forms of this basic fact have been elaborated into stories of a man, a woman, and a serpent in a primal garden, common to many different religions. This force is evolutionary, both in its expression of the procreative urge and its internal union within the human body, opening the door to the inspired consciousness that guides the progress of the human race through sages, seers, geniuses, and artists. This force is slowly modifying the biological structure of vital currents in the body. For a fuller understanding of these bare facts, it is essential to study earlier books by Gopi Krishna. In this new one, using straightforward questions and answers, he discusses some of the implications for both religion and science.

Out of his own experience, which is still with him in a never-ending meditation, he speaks to each individual reader so that he or she may personally weigh the meaning of this primary phenomenon, its connections with great spiritual teachings, and its incredible evolutionary role in the destiny of all life and consciousness. He shows how we can understand and cooperate with this force and live in harmony with its purpose, confirming what religious and ethical leaders have always taught: There has to be creative change within each individual, based on his own efforts, refining his understanding of his place in the scheme of life.

If this seems at first less sensational than the shortcuts promised by modern pop Gurus, that is only a deceptive initial impression. Gopi Krishna enlarges on the meaning of total life and the contribution that will be made by a reformed religion and open-minded science, in a future destiny of the human race beyond the wildest dreams of modern thinkers.

This book speaks directly to your own judgment. It makes no imperious demands and does not demand to be taken on trust. In a world of the spurious, catchpenny, dishonest, and power-seeking, there is an incredible satisfaction in contacting once again simple truth which can guide us through modern perplexities.

Gopi Krishna has a special message for scientists and scholars. He pleads for experiments to validate the reality of the arousal of kundalini and its biological effects in the human organism. He offers cooperation in investigating scientific aspects of his own condition-a living example of a development so rare that we are fortunate in having such an individual in our own lifetime.

What are we waiting for?

Meanwhile, I urge every individual to study this book with honesty and sincerity, and experience the joy of self-discovery; to develop awareness of the greatest enigma of human experience-the meaning of life itself.

Leslie Shepard


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