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Explosions of energy in the head on falling asleep


Can anyone explain this phenomenon> It is quite painless and intermittent and occurs most nights (has for about 20 years). The best description I can give is that it is a silent explosion of energy at the back or crown of the head. It occurs just as I am falling asleep. Occasionally it occurs on waking. Sometimes it is a stronger and more focused charge of energy that seems to dart one side of the head to the other just above the ears. There used to be, sometimes, a flash of white light behind the eyes at the same time, but that hasn’t occurred for a long time. I suppose it is just energy that has been blocked somehow during the day and I’m thinking liver Qi stagnation / liver Yang / excess energy in the GB meridian but I have never seen this symptom described in this, or any, connection and would dearly love to know precisely what it means. Someone suggested it is Kundalini rising. I’d like to think so but, somehow, I don’t.


Certainly if you are involved in long-term meditation practices (or other related arts) you can get all types of sensations throughout varying periods of your training/life. So the kundalini idea, among many others I"m sure you’ve heard, has a mild amount of merit – except for what seems to be the case that it only happens upon laying down and/or getting up. This is usually just a sensitivity to blood pressure changes and the white flashes are likely a mild version of ocular migraines (which really just means as the blood pressure to the eyes change, visual disturbances can happen). It’s probably meaningless, but if you have really low blood pressure it is more likely.

There are a few more ways to explain physiologically, but none of them have huge clinical importance as long as it isn’t happening often during the day, you sleep well and you are otherwise fine.

It’s usually not liver qi stagnation and/or liver yang excess as those come with a variety of other symptoms that in most cases point very clearly towards those diagnoses.


Dear Chad,

Thank you for your kind response to my question Yes, it could, I suppose,
be Kundalini rising. I agree that is worth considering and I’m not sure I’d
discount it on the grounds of the phenomenon occurring only on lying down or
rising because psychic phenomena are more likely then because of the pineal
involvement. However, I really don’t think that is the cause. I’ve had
experiences of a similar but much more intense kind associated with astral
travelling / displacement of consciousness, which might be the same thing
(in part) as Kundalini rising, but they have a different quality. In any
case I might not have been specific enough in my question. The,
“explosions”, occur not when physically changing position (lying down or
standing up) but when actually at the point of falling asleep, and they
don’t always occur. They fit the description of what in allopathic medicine
is called,“sleep phenomena”, but I have not seen a description more detailed
than that.

It makes sense to me that the white light flashes occurred because of
changes to blood pressure in the eyes, especially as, when they were
occurring, I did sometimes have migraine (not at the same time). On the
other hand I have slightly elevated, not low, blood pressure. Do you think
this interpretation still applies?.

You say “It’s usually not liver qi stagnation and/or liver yang excess as
those come with a variety of other symptoms that in most cases point very
clearly towards those diagnoses”. I don’t have any pain, emotional or
digestive disturbances but do have some liver signs, specifically,
“floaters”, in my eyes (mild) and my scarred nails might, I believe, be
liver blood stagnation. Despite that, would you still rule out Liver Qi
stagnation or liver yang rising?

I hope I’m not being too insistent with all these questions. I really
appreciate the opportunity to ask them.

Kind regards,


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