Kriya of the Month: Kirtan Kriya


I have been practicing Kundalini Yoga on and off for almost two decades. I started because I heard Madonna did it – so I figured if I did Kundalini Yoga I too would have rock hard abs. Over the years I have done a number of other yoga practices. I also practiced Tai Chi, Kung Fu, and Ba Gua. My favorite practice (and the one that gave me rock hard abs) became the now disgraced Bikram Yoga. It fully exhausted me, and every day I was thrilled to leave the studio alive.

In Q3 of 2018 I started obsessively practicing Kundalini Yoga at a place near my office in Union Square. I was sick the entire time, but I forced myself to go. I loved the teachers, the practitioners, it seemed somewhat diverse relative to other practices, and I felt qualitatively different after each class.

When I went to visit my in-laws in winter, I continued to practice a daily Kriya – ie a yoga posture.  I started contemplating doing the kundalini yoga teacher training.  I am a systems thinker, and kundalini for me was another type of system.  Often times the instructors refer to particular breaths or kriyas as ‘tech’- this could be technique or technology.  I am slightly cynical about credentialing and yoga teacher training in general.  I am concerned that I would not be able to devote myself fully to a yoga teacher training.  I have a lot on my plate (family, kids, work, side hustles, classical guitar, conscious computation, getting conscious in general). However, I would want to teach, or integrate this into my larger work on conscious computation, or perhaps education in general regarding breath and body work.

So it happened I was in Union Square this weekend with some free time after a meeting fell.  This gave me the chance to attend the  kundalini yoga teacher training open house. I expressed my concerns: that if I made a commitment I would want to be able to honor it. I said that I gave myself a test – I had to do one kriya every day for 30 days (really it should be 40 – i think that is what resets your something or other). The other folks chuckled knowingly and then the teacher said – well we know what we have to do – give you a 3 min kriya!  Once of the graduates suggested Kirtan – and so here I am.

I am a few days in to the Kirtan Kriya. It is really about 12 min total. If I can commit to 12 minutes a day to do yoga then I can commit to a teacher training.