Deciphering the Golden Flower One Secret at a Time
  by JJ Semple

A Tell-All Memoir on Overcoming Obstacles

Curiosity and circumstance often propel individuals beyond the confines of their upbringing, dumping them into unfamiliar, unexpected life situations. Thus was JJ Semple transported into a trial-and-error process of self-discovery, a path that took him from the East Coast Brahman establishment, to France, to a meeting with Gopi Krishna in India, and back to the USA. What he found along the way was Kundalini, the biological basis of both science and religion.

How does kundalini come into an ordinary person's life? Is it foreordained like a priestly calling or is it a Karmic inevitability? The fact is kundalini is an evolutionary driver that just keeps pushing mankind towards higher forms of consciousness. It may not seem that way, what with all the negative emotion, internecine wars, racial hatred, lack of civility, addiction, and self-destructive tendencies. Nevertheless, there’s an evolutionary impluse driving our forward movement, and it is a positive forceDeciphering the Golden Flower One Secret at a Time describes the unlikely circumstances that foreshadowed, and ultimately shaped, JJ Semple's kundalini experience!

JJ&Martine

Photos (top to bottom): JJ & Martine, circa 1985; JJ & Madeline, 1964; JJ & Margo, NYC Photomat, 1966

Says JJ Semple: "Deciphering the Golden Flower One Secret at a Time is the definitive tell-all journal of obstacles met and overcome on the path to activating Kundalini. I don't leave anything out: A childhood accident that robbed me of my talents and memory, my battle with drugs and alcohol, the influential women in my life, my slow deterioration and eventual disequilibrium. The young girl in Paris who gave me a copy of The Secret of the Golden Flower (SGF), which led to my discovery of Kundalini meditation — an esoteric energy cultivation technique — that actually overhauled certain aspects of my anatomy and metabolism, a wholesale biological retrofitting that opened up a consciousness of unlimited dimension. Deciphering the Golden Flower is a full-circle account of self-actualization, involving a lot of detective work.

JJ& Madeline & JJ The Mall, Washington, DC, circa 1964

"Because I was unaware that The Secret of the Golden Flower contained a workable method for recovering my lost talents, I wasted a full year on fruitless meditation systems before reading it. I spent another two years deciphering the text, finally overcoming my initial befuddlement due to its arcane wording. I dropped everything to devote myself to practicing meditation. My practice led me to discover a safe, reliable method for activating Kundalini, the method I call Golden Flower Meditation (GFM). It took me twenty years to write this book, now hailed as a thorough, practical primer that modern practitioners use to awaken Kundalini and experience many of the same metanormal phenomenon that I did."

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Awakening Kundalini starts with diaphragmatic deep breathing to slow down the heart rate, which has the effect of relaxing the body. And since you cannot influence or control the heart rate directly, you must use a “handle” to accomplish it — in this instance, you will use the acquired diaphragmatic deep breathing capability to make your breathing more profound and more regular. What do I mean by more profound and regular? Profound means still, as in silent; regular means rhythmic.

Once you’ve mastered the diaphragmatic breathing skill, you will be able to take in more air during each breath cycle. How does this work? Shallow breathing merely fills the chest. Deep breathing fills the lungs, the diaphragm, the belly, even the pockets behind the kidneys. With diaphragmatic breathing, you not only take in more air, you slow down the inhalation-exhalation cycle to the point where breathing becomes entirely silent.


The Secret of the Golden Flower says, “Only the heart must be conscious of the flowing in and out of the breath; it must not be heard with the ears.” Like the diaphragm, the heart is a muscle we cannot isolate or control directly. Once again you use a “handle” to control the heart. As The Secret of the Golden Flower says, “The heart cannot be influenced directly. Therefore, the breath-energy is used as a handle.”

JJ & Margo - Photomat 1966

Said to be the Buddha's kundalini meditation method, Golden Flower Meditation uses the nervous and respiratory systems to trigger a host of metabolic and somatic activity in the human body, especially in the internal organs. Through Golden Flower Kundalini Meditation, the nervous system is stimulated such that the natural chemical substances of the body are recombined and used for self-healing, rejuvenative purposes and greater overall awareness. But it all starts with breathing ...

Typical Amazon Reviews

"I normally would not believe that something like this could occur, but something rings true to me. Semple could have set himself up as a paragon of virtue after the experience, but he doesn't. In fact, it is his very humanness that makes his quest even more fascinating."

"JJ Semple's book reads like an Old World romance movie. I am surprised by how good a writer he is. The book brings to mind images of smoky Parisian cafes, beautiful yet mysterious women, countryside charms that are remote and of another world. Somerset Maugham himself could have been sipping tea with the author at some point, debating the finer points of writing and breathing, with Anais Nin listening in from the next table.”

"In a literary genre filled with non-science and charlatanism, JJ Semple stands alone in relating his authentic and revolutionary Kundalini account. The tremendous service he has done here is in tying together two critical pieces of the Kundalini puzzle together, namely: Kundalini/Gopi Krishna and The Secret of the Golden Flower.

"Until this book was published, these two were not at all understood to be related — even the great Carl Jung wasn't able to crack this code. Yet Semple has done so, and lays it all out in an engaging writing style which leaves no doubt as to the authenticity and importance of the experience he has undergone. An incredibly inspirational account; required reading for any meditator, beginners and experts alike."

"The embodiment of Kundalini-Life Force was evident within every word written by JJ Semple in his book Deciphering the Golden Flower One Secret at a Time. I was drawn in by this power to read it, and soon discovered the power was reading me. You cannot turn away from truth once you have awareness of it ..."

"JJ Semple shares his experience of Kundalini awakening in this book. Being a great writer, the book is easy to read and follow, and is full of good tips for those going through the Kundalini process, or interested in it."

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Excerpt from Front Street Reviews:

"When I think of memoirs, I am often bored by the thought of reading the machinations of some person's mundane existence. I imagine the story to be amateurish, over-written, and esoteric. Couple that memoir with a critical commentary on a [in]famous philosophical treatise from Chinese spirituality and I expected a full-on yawn-fest. Instead, I was met with a frank, enlightening foray into the depths of The Secret of the Golden Flower from the perspective of a real person, flaws and all. JJ Semple's Deciphering the Golden Flower One Secret at a Time is truly a phenomenon unto itself.  This book uses one person's real life to extrapolate the intricacies of The Golden Flower, from pre-discovery to post-discovery, and it is quite a ride.

"At the same time as encompassing the spiritual element, Semple's book also masters the craft of writing and entertainment. He has mastered dialogue in its creative nonfiction element and brought alive through voice the characters of his memories. In addition, his writing is constantly hand-carved – in no instance does it feel over-written or flowery, as though he has kept his language on a leash close to his hip.

"I recommend this book to everyone. Truly, this is the best book I've read in a long time, both in terms of practical application of spiritual practice and market entertainment. This book is a riveting experience."

by Arminta Matthews, June 20, 2008

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Deciphering the Golden Flower - Amazon Reviews

Excerpt from Top 50 Amazon Reviewer:
"Let me say that this is a superbly written memoir. Semple's narrative command might invoke the envy of a best-selling novelist. And his facility with the language, his ability to effortlessly (or so it seems, without effort) to find just the right word or expression to make his story vivid and engaging for the reader is highly admirable. Furthermore the prose is polished and very nicely edited. The book is pleasure to read and it reads fast.

"The glimpses we get of the women in his life are very interesting. I especially liked Margo and Martine. Semple has the novelist's gift for dialogue and quick description through which these women come to life."

by Dennis Littrell, May 5, 2008

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Excerpt from Sentient Times Review:
"JJ Semple's account of the changes he experienced during the meditation practice which led to his dramatic awakening helps the reader understand just how healing an arising Kundalini can be.

"With its empirical discussion of the physiological nature of a Kundalini awakeningDeciphering the Golden Flower One Secret at a Time offers a fascinating look into this multi-dimensional phenomenon."

by Deborah Mokma, February/March 2007

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