Further to my earlier question --What is the method for "Coupling of the Serenity and Insight Powers" referred to in the Path of Discrimination? -- a fresh question has surfaced based on the book Foundations of Tibetan Mysticism by Lama Govinda.

On page 133 of this book reference is made to "The Doctrine of Psychic Centres in Hinduism and Buddhism". As a Theravada Buddhist, the concept of psychic centres and kundalini shakthi was never alluded to, as I thought it was not a part of the Theravada doctrine. However, now, in the context of the earlier question referred to on the method for coupling of the serenity and insight powers, there seems to be a direct link between the Hindu and Buddhist Doctrines. The essential difference is that Hindu Psychic Centres (chakras) are static whilst the Buddhist ones are dynamic -- see page 134:

"The Buddhist system is less concerned with the static-objective side of the chakras, but rather with that which flows through them, with their dynamic functions i.e. the transformation of that current or nature-energies into spiritual potentialities."

Since at the Moment of Enlightenment the Buddha is said to have generated sufficient Energy to "rock the entire universe" and the above question is also in the context of coupling the insight (vipassana) and serenity (samatha) Energies at the Moment of Path Entry, could we now see a connection between the Kundalini Shakthi of Hinduism and the Vishwa Shakthi (Cosmic Consciousness) of Buddhism?

1 Answer 1


I have been thinking about this for a while as you meditate one gets experiences which are similar to those described in yoga texts. The yoga texts discuss energy centres and the flow of energy through them starting from the Muladhara.

In Theravada Buddhism, all these experiences related to Kundalini are categorised into Piti. Also, there is no reference to for awakening and making it flow through the chakras. I guess this might be since these experiences can be a source of attachment to the blissful feeling this is not directly related to letting go of craving and also people may be preoccupied with these experiences than developing higher wisdom.

Path consciousness happens balanced with the Jhana when insight and calm are well balanced:

  1. The First Jhāna Sotāpatti Path-consciousness together with initial application, sustained application, joy, happiness, and one-pointedness,

  2. The Second Jhāna Sotāpatti Path-consciousness together with sustained application, joy, happiness, and one-pointedness,

  3. The Third Jhāna Sotāpatti Path-consciousness together with joy, happiness, and one-pointedness,

  4. The Fourth Jhāna Sotāpatti Path-consciousness together with happiness and one-pointedness,

  5. The Fifth Jhāna Sotāpatti Path-consciousness together with equanimity and one-pointedness.

These are the five types of Sotāpatti Path-consciousness.

So are the Sakadāgāmī Path-consciousness, Anāgāmī Path-consciousness, and Arahatta Path-consciousness, making exactly twenty classes of consciousness. Similarly there are twenty classes of Fruit-consciousness. Thus there are forty types of supra mundane consciousness.

In the 1st - 3rd Jhana there is Piti which can be taken as the similarity with kundalini.

  • The key issue appears to be Energy or "Iddhi-padas.' This question is focused more towards the art of Coupling such Energies, at the moment of Path Entry, as against the mechanics of obtaining the jhanas. The Buddhist Dictionary by Ven Nyanatiloka in the context of "Being connected with the Path" states that the Iddhi-pada (p.76)"through making Intention a predominant factor, reaches concentration....(Chanda Samadhi). Vajrayana Buddhism refers to Intention as Dharani or as Visualization. Yogis appear to ignore Iddhipada. Perhaps Intention ensures seamless Coupling of two Energies? Perhaps? Oct 6, 2019 at 2:06
  • Further to the above comment, page 73 of 'The Foundations of Tibetan Mysticism" by Lama Govinda, refers to a chapter on the "Double Role of the Mind (Manas). This chapter refers to the Role of the Siddhis.(aka Iddhipada in Theravada). This appears to provide a more specific solution from the Vajrayana standpoint, to this problem of making a break through into the Noble Path Moment, that has presumably bedeviled many Theravada yogis. Vajrayana refers to eight types of Consciousness as against the six in Theravada. This distinction may clear the air to a degree, for non Vajrayana yogis. Oct 6, 2019 at 5:11

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