You may have heard someone mention Kundalini, maybe in reference to meditation, or yoga, or other holistic and spiritual methods. Kudalini itself refers to the dormant sleeping force inside all humans. The name itself means "coiled" and in the west is sometimes referred to as a coiled snake, though this is more of a western change than an actual translation or understanding. Thinking of our power as a snake adds some marketing value for sure!
But this hidden power is something that has been experience by many people the world over and originates from India and the Yogic practices.
This coiled power lies near the base of our spine in a coiled position that can be meditated on and released through physical/spiritual practices, especially, as mentioned above, through certain forms of yoga. This power, when released travels from chakra to chakra energizing and awakening these energy centers.
Some people have described the experience as intensely pleasurable, with a surging along the spine giving intense pleasure and power at each chakra. This is experience can also be overwhelming and damaging if the person is untrained and awakens their kundalini with no idea how to control or understand what is happening.
Those that speak with experience and knowledge in this area say that it is almost an absolute necessity that a trained Yogi be present, a trained master who knows how to help an individual deal with this awakening.
With proper practice and guidance one can learn to transmit this energy through the chakras. Effectively providing an increase in power and function along our energy channels. Again it is important to note that these types of practices, though at times seem a bit esoteric, are very real in their power and influence. Guidance and caution are really key, as an uncontrolled release of energy in any instance is really and explosion, causing damage and confusion to the surrounding area. Being able to channel this energy correctly is essential to a positive and beneficial experience with Kundalini.
It is interesting to note that some psychologist in the west have viewed the danger of incorporating Eastern practices, such as meditation and yoga, into our daily lives. This view has even turned into certain psychologists coining phrases such as "Kundalini Syndrome."
The syndrome is most dominantly used to describe the physical and spiritual state present after a near death experience. But this "syndrome" is now be attributed in regards to meditation and yoga.
I am going to be blunt and say it is not proper practice for a medical field to take an Eastern Field, take a term and then use it to describe a negative medical condition. The wiser of the field are now beginning to give the term its proper place in a humans life and refer to this as a kundalini awakening or experience. Instead of the negatively charged "syndrome."
The experience may not always be pleasant but those who have some literature and spiritual background, as well as psychological, know that the process of healing and becoming whole is not without it troubles and struggles. These humps found along the way are what helps the awakening to happen.
This is an area worth exploring for anyone interested in spiritual growth. Be patient, be cautious, keep and open mind and find someone to work with that has done this before. Any skill and personal growth is helped by a coach, a mentor, etc. Spiritual growth is no different.