Throughout history, humans have found pathways that are aimed at awakening our consciousness to those transcendent levels that we may occasionally, or accidentally, discover are possible. The Grace of Splendor and Beauty, Aglaia, is constantly calling us to discover our fully awakened selves.
For, in fact, we live in a luscious and mysterious world. As Unitarian Universalist minister Rev. David Takahashi Morris once wrote, “From every direction in every moment we are bathed in sensations. Our bodies are built to invite the invasion, to court and welcome stimuli that come to us from the outside and from within.
“But we don’t receive the whole of the sensual world all at once, all the time, of course, even though it is continually available and urgently seeking our attention. We couldn’t possibly make sense of it all.”
And yet, some people eventually do. It seems that we as a species are always seeking to expand what we can perceive on every level, hopefully, without cracking up. The compulsion to seek splendor, the opening to a cosmic level of magnificence is the irresistable call of Aglaia. It is exactly what kundalini yoga cultivates, what alchemists, magicians, children, mystics, and artists toil towards.
One pathway that can gently open the receptors of magnificence, in ways that do not imperil the organism (meaning us!) is to develop into what author Diane Ackerman calls a “sensuist.” A sensuist is one who cultivates and seeks out as much sensory experience as possible.
As we have observed from those who have written extensively about their kundalini awakenings, one of the most notable occurrences in this experience is the intense shifting in sensory perceptions: seeing lights, colors, auras; hearing incessant rhythms and music, and generally being overwhelmed by a cacophony of sensations ranging from ecstatic to excruciating.
So by learning to open our sensory perceptions, methodically deepening our body experience, can we cultivate and nurture our own inner genius, our Dragon Fire?