So these metaphors – that the feeling of kundalini is like the movement of a serpent – are just symbolic, but they correspond with reality. The same movement is there; the subtle movement, just like a snake, is there. The force is there, the golden appearance is there – and all of this corresponds to the symbol of the snake. So if that symbol is congenial to you, it is all right.
But it may not be congenial; so never say to anybody that what has happened to you is bound to happen to him. Never say that to anyone. It may be, or it may not be. The symbol is appropriate for you, it may not be for him. If this much can be understood, there is no reason for dissension.
Differences have come about because of symbols. A Mohammed cannot conceive of a Buddha’s symbol. It is impossible! The environments of the two were so different. Even the word god can be a burden if it is not conceived of as a symbol that corresponds to your individuality.
For example, Mohammed could not conceive of God as compassion. Compassion did not exist anywhere in his environment. Everything was so terrifying, so dangerous, that God had to be conceived of differently. Crossing from one country to the next, slaughtering, the people in Mohammed’s environment could not conceive of a God that was not cruel. An uncruel God, a compassionate God, would have been unreal to them because the concept wouldn’t have corresponded to their reality.
To a Hindu, God is seen through the environment. The nature is beautiful, the soil is fertile; the race is deeply rooted in the earth. Everything is flowing and flowing in a particular direction, and the movement is very slow, just like the Ganges. It is not terrifying and dangerous. So the Hindu god is bound to be a Krishna, dancing and playing on his flute. This image comes from the environment and from the racial mind and its experiences.
Everything subjective is bound to be translated, but whatever name and symbol we give to it is not unreal. It is real to us. So one must defend one’s own symbol, but one must not impose one’s own symbol on others. One must say, “Even if all the others are against this symbol, it is congenial to me; it comes to me naturally and spontaneously. God comes to me in this way; I do not know how he comes to others.”
So there have been many ways to indicate these things, thousands and thousands of ways. But when I say it is subjective, psychic, I do not mean it is just a name. It is not just a name: to you it is a reality. It comes to you in this way and it cannot come to you otherwise. If we do not confuse materiality with reality, and do not confuse objectivity with reality, then everything will become clear. But if you confuse them, then things become difficult to understand.