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Female Kundalini
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The inner event that awakens Kundalini remains a mystery. In Margaret Dempsey's case, years of Buddhist meditation, galvanized by a traumatic contact with an attractive man, triggered the "uprising of Shakti." Her honesty in not attempting to glamorize the awakening attests to its authenticity. The author's real Self, to which Kundalini eventually brought her, is in evidence from page one, as she describes her upbringing in Catholic Ireland, her days in a boarding school run by nuns, her training as a nurse, and her escape to London, New York and India. Kundalini is nourished by sexual energy. The fundamental polarity of male and female is at the heart of the cosmos. The polarity of male, Siva, and female, Shakti, is also manifested in the human body, in the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems, and the left and right sides of the brain, a subject on which Margaret Dempsey speaks with great insight. The polarity is also revealed in her life story. Her father's favoring her over her mother, a young priest recovering from a nervous breakdown who speaks to the hearts of the teenage girls in his congregation, her meeting with Mooji, and the "gorgeous" man who rejected her, are a potent male presence, round which the author's spiritualized womanhood dances. There is a marvelous moment when she speaks of surrender: "I had no idea what I was letting go of... I couldn't have surrendered to nothingness. Somehow I knew there was something to surrender to." In Tantra, the male god, Siva is both the "Destroyer" (of illusion and ego) and the "Immovable Stillness" of transcendence. The goddess, Shakti, is the energy of creation and manifestation. Kundalini is Shakti's presence in the human body. The book's title, "Female Kundalini," is therefore apt, not just because it is the document of one woman's Kundalini experience, but because Kundalini Herself, is fundamentally female, even in men. In her single-minded focus and her honesty in pursuit of self-actualization, Margaret Dempsey reminds me of a distaff Siddhartha. A steadfast explorer, she has accomplished much in a short time, investigating and practicing many techniques and methods, not as a sycophant, but as an actualizer, a person who tests everything in the laboratory of her body, while remaining true to her ultimate goals, so aptly described in the pages of her book.

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