How This Book Came To Be
In 1913 Charles Ledbeater, an Englishman who lived and taught in Sri Lanka, brought knowledge of the chakra system to the West in “The Chakras.” For decades he was the main authority on this system, although it was well known in India,
In the second half of the twentieth century, Harish Johari came to the U.S. and Europe each year. He authored another classic, “The Chakras: Energy Centers of Transformation.” He was also a gifted artist. And he resurrected the ancient game Leela, based on the chakras, with a game board and book. (It’s still in print with the title The Yoga of Snakes and Arrows.) The three authors of the present work studied with him for about twenty years, on and off, until he passed on in 1999.
Pieter Weltevrede was Johari’s principal art student. After Harish’s passing, he came to the U.S. every year and stayed near Kooch and Victor’s home. The three became fast friends and concluded that it was time to share what they had learned from Johari. We put what we had gained into a new chakra book that brought in our own knowledge and experience and gave special attention to making practical tools for chakra work more accessible.
Kooch and Victor went to India in 2013 (the third trip for each of them) and interviewed such authorities on the chakras as Pilot Baba and Mataji Narmada Puri. Kooch emphasizes the Goddess tradition in Tantra yoga, and hands-on applications of chakra-related knowledge. Victor devised the unique “Table of Possibilities” and other conceptual innovations for each chakra, and contributed his broad knowledge of Eastern traditions and Western psychology and psychotherapy.
Pieter, who spends part of each year in India studying with different gurus, has an in-depth understanding of the Tantric symbols used in his art. He began as the book’s illustrator, but as we worked together, he became a coauthor, with his focus on Vedic symbolism.
Since Awakening the Chakras was released in 2017, the three authors have also collaborated to produce the 2019 Sacred Mysteries chakra oracle deck. Kooch and Victor wrote the accompanying book that tells how to use the cards.