Updated: Mar 5
As yoga & meditation teacher and sound healer Nick Daez makes his way to Open House, learn about the healing benefits of a Kundalini Yoga and Sound Bath practice on your mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual health.
“It’s a cult of people wearing all white and turbans with long beards.” This is the most common misconception that Nick Daez, a Kundalini yoga and meditation teacher, gets from those not familiar with the practice. When the west took on this centuries-old tradition and practice in the ‘70s, the publicity (or lack thereof) that followed it around left some things out.
Kundalini Yoga is known as the yoga of awareness. The practice is dynamic: in movements as much as it is in breathing exercises, chanting mantras, and meditation. It prepares the body to tune into a higher vibration and awaken a deep-seated energy inside.
As with other forms of yoga – which, in Sanskrit, means “union” – Kundalini traces its roots to an ancient civilization that spans from Iran, to India, all the way to Tibet. (In this way, Eastern religions such as Buddhism and Hinduism will have tangled histories with yoga, even if yoga itself is not a religion.) It exists in accordance with the belief that the body holds energy centers, or chakras, at specific points along the spine. At the base of the spine lays a “sleeping” coiled snake, known as the Kundalini. This energy, once awakened, is said to align and activate all the chakras of the body which, when clear and unblocked, raises the entire energetic field of a person to a higher frequency. The result is an ecstatic high and expanded consciousness.
“Beginners can expect a visceral experience during a Kundalini practice,” says Nick. “Since Kundalini works a lot with energy, you can feel tingles or sensations all over your body. It feels like a natural high.” Nick also mentions the role of chanting mantras in the practice as a tool to “cut through the mental and emotional patterns” of its practitioners. “The mantra, ‘sat nam,’” he continues, “translates to ‘truth is my identity.’ Imagine mentally vibrating that for an hour. It’s simply a positive affirmation, just the way we tell ourselves, ‘We’re strong,’ or, ‘We’re brave.’ But as we do this consciously and synchronised with our breath and movement, we’re really creating a big shift within ourselves.”
A Kundalini yoga practice is both a physical and spiritual activity. “For me, you have to experience a class yourself so you can tell if you resonate with the practice or not,” says Nick. “I think the fact that Kundalini works with subtle energies, emotions, and the mind will make that resonate with people visiting or living in La Union."
From March 6 to 8, Nick will be at Open House in La Union to teach Kundalini Yoga classes and facilitate Sound Bath sessions. Pairing the Kundalini yoga with the Tibetan bowls amplifies the benefits of the practice, so to speak, and opens up the body to a full sensory experience that releases stress and brings the body to a state of rejuvenation.
As a healer in these modalities, Nick took his trainings in New Mexico, Nepal, and Bali. As a creative professional, he is a photographer, filmmaker, and writer who co-founded the video production company Seabiscuit Films, which is based in Manila. He is no stranger to the fast pace of the urban jungle, nor to the entanglements it can create in a person’s value and belief system. “People go to LU to slow down or to find refuge from the hustle and bustle of the city. It’s exactly the same with Kundalini,” Nick shares. “It’s a practice that affects you so powerfully that it spills over your daily life – from your relationships to the way you work and go through mundane activities. It teaches you how to breathe and how to perceive challenges as points of growth and expansion instead of seeing them as heavy burdens or problems.”