The science of pranayama
An act that unites every being on the earth is breathing. Breath connects us with the world, with each other and with God. At times we are completely unaware of this voluntary activity. However, without it we won’t be able to survive even for five minutes. We might have noticed that our breath and our emotions are connected. When we are in dismay we let out a heavy sigh. When we are elated and exited we feel breathless. When at peace our breathing is slow and deep. Thus by manipulating breath, we can control our physical, emotional and psychological states.
This science of breathing is a fully developed discipline in Yoga, called Pranayama. Pranayama considers breath as the life force and it involves different breathing techniques and exercises that help in the overall development of the body, mind and soul.
These techniques that manipulate the breath are thousands of years old and empirically developed by the wisest minds of ancient India.
Pranayama is expounded in the Bhagavad Gita as ‘a precious Yajna’ . Patanjali in his Yoga Sutra considers Pranayama as the fourth limb in Ashtanga yoga. Hatha Yoga also engages various Pranayama techniques like Ujjayi and Kapalbhati along with various body locks/Bandhas as a substantial part of Yoga asana practices. Beyond a spiritual practice the benefits of Pranayama to the healing and balancing of the body and mind has been scientifically proven today.
Pranayama is a sure cure for various bodily ailments like asthma, and stress related disorders. Certain breathing techniques can regulate blood pressure and relax muscles. Harmony and peace are established and the monkey mind is controlled and a sense of pure bliss is felt within the practitioner. Pranayama connects the individual soul with the Supreme Soul.
Pranayama is also engaged during yoga poses, meditation as well as during Mantra Japa. Pranayama in its advanced stages can clear energy block and thus propel the circulation of energy through all channels. Pranayama is also used to awaken the Kundalini and thus enable the subtle spiritual body. Pranayama along with Kalpana (visualization) has creative powers to shift realities and endows in the practitioner a positive all inclusive mindset.
Pranayama should be done only after learning it under the guidance of an experienced Guru. Pranayama has the power to affect us beyond the physio-psycho structure and thus demands great attention and precision while practicing them. We offer Pranayama classes to help you to develop the skill of manipulating breath to gain control over the Self and your inner and outer worlds. Join us!