The health that you enjoy today, and for the rest of your life, begins with your next breath. In fact, breathing is so crucial to your body’s ability to heal and sustain itself that Dr. Andrew Weil says: “If I had to limit my advice on healthier living to just one tip, it would be simply to learn how to breathe correctly.”
Here, we will learn a breathing technique that Dr. Weil uses in his own life: “the most powerful relaxation technique” that he has come across and one that he teaches to almost all of his patients. Dr. Weil reports that breathing exercises get more favorable response from patients than anything else he teaches.
To learn the art of healthy breathing, Dr. Weil turned to Eastern traditions, including yoga, which view the breath as a vital link to the prana, or energy of the universe. In his practice and research, Dr. Weil discovered the secret of breathwork’s power over your health and its remarkable ability to influence—and even reprogram—the nervous system. From increasing energy to lowering blood pressure to improving circulation to beating anxiety disorders without drugs, breathwork offers tremendous benefits to our health and well-being.
How to Prepare for Breathwork
Try to find a quiet place with no distractions. Pick a comfortable chair to sit in, and keep your back straight. Make sure your head is in a comfortable position. You can close your eyes or keep them open (or halfway open).
It’s best if you can practice the following breathwork technique daily. Find times in the day when this practice feels natural and logical and when you will not be interrupted—and make a resolution to do it at those times. The amount of time you spend on this work is not important, but regularity is. Only with constancy of input over time can you change the rhythms in your nervous system for better health.
Throughout the exercise, keep your tongue in the “yogic” position. Touch the tip of the tongue to the backs of the upper front teeth, and then slide it up just a bit, until it is lightly touching that ridge of hard tissue between the teeth and the palate (the alveolar ridge). Yoga philosophy teaches that there are two nerve currents of opposite polarity in the human body that begin and end at those points. When you make that connection with the tongue, it’s said that you’re completing a circuit and keeping the energy of breath within instead of dissipating it to the outside.
The Relaxing Breath
The Relaxing Breath is the most powerful relaxation method I know, and one that I teach to almost every patient I work with. You may feel a little lightheaded when doing it for the first time, but the sensation will disappear as you practice this breath regularly.
Inhale through your nose quietly and exhale through your mouth noisily, exhaling around your tongue (it helps if you purse your lips). The sound you make when you exhale is a kind of whoosh. Try that a few times so that you get comfortable with exhaling through your mouth and around your tongue.
Begin the Relaxing Breath by exhaling through your mouth completely. Then inhale quietly through your nose to a count of four, hold your breath for a count of seven, and exhale through your mouth for a count of eight. Repeat that for a total of four breath cycles (you will find that this takes very little time). What is important here is the ratio of four, seven, and eight for inhalation, hold, and exhalation, respectively. The amount of time you spend doing the four breath cycles is not as important as that ratio.
Your exhalation must last for a count of eight, so resist the temptation to blow it all in the first two seconds. Let out a slow, measured breath; then repeat the cycle again. At the end of four breath cycles, just breathe normally without trying to influence the breath, and notice how you feel.
To reap the long-term benefits of the Relaxing Breath, do a minimum of four breath cycles twice a day. After a month, you can increase the number of cycles to eight, twice a day—but never do more than eight breath cycles. This is a very powerful technique, and it has profound effects on physiology.
After you have worked with this exercise for some time, you can begin to use it in a variety of ways. If something upsets you—for example if somebody speaks to you harshly or cuts you off in traffic—do the Relaxing Breath before you react. It is also the most effective anti-anxiety technique I know.
Finally, I would like to leave you with one very powerful tip which will allow you to maximize self-healing through breathwork. In order to take the fullest kind of breath, you have to do what is called “abdominal breathing”: that is, when you take a deep breath, your belly should move outward. To find out whether this is happening, just put your hand on your abdomen and see whether it moves outward as your belly expands.
Many of us do not let our abdomen expand freely as we breathe. We restrict those muscles, and as a result are unable to take a full, deep breath. So another general tip about breathing is to practice just taking some deep breaths and letting your belly move outward. Only when that movement occurs are you taking the full volume of air into your lungs that you are capable of taking in.
If today you can be aware of breathing for ten seconds more than you were yesterday, you will have taken a measurable step toward expanded consciousness; deeper communication between mind and body; and integration of your physical, mental, and spiritual functions. I can recommend no single more powerful—or more simple—daily practice to further your health and well-being.
From Breathing: The Master Key to Self-Healing by Andrew Weil, MD
SunGazing was a popular practice in ancient times. Mayans, ancient Egyptians, Indians and many other ancient cultures strongly believed in the power of Sun. They believed that it could heal diseases, put an end the need of food, and even make telepathy a real possibility.
The practice of SunGazing closely resembles its name. At sunrise and/or sunset, when the sun is closest to the earth, SunGazers stand barefoot on the earth and look directly at the sun for 10 seconds. Every day, 10 seconds are added and some SunGazers eventually reach a duration of 44 minutes.
The theory is that the sun is the force of all life, and staring at it can infuse the body with large amounts of energy. So much so that, Hira Ratan Manek, one of the SunGazers featured in the documentary, Eat the Sun, claims to have gone eight years without eating. He has been “eating” a steady diet of solar rays, and claims that this is all he needs for nourishment.
It may sound like a myth, but some scientists, have acknowledged the power of SunGazing. Nikola Tesla once talked about these super human abilities. He said,
‘My idea is that the development of life must lead to forms of existence that will be possible without nourishment and which will not be shackled by consequent limitations. Why should a living being not be able to obtain all the energy it needs for the performance of its life functions from the environment, instead of through consumption of food, and transforming, by a complicated process, the energy of chemical combinations into life-sustaining energy?’
Our ancestors understood the relation between the sun and health. From the Aztecs to the ancient Egyptians, many past societies revered SunGazing as an esoteric practice for high-ranking priests and shamans. Today, it is experiencing a resurgence in popularity and SunGazers claim it has its benefits.
The benefits of the practice are said to be as follows:
- It activates our pineal gland and boosts production of melatonin and serotonin which are also called feel-good hormones. The hormones are also supposed to be the reason behind the increased energy level.
- It is known to stimulate the growth of pineal gland. Generally pineal glands shrink with age, but with SunGazing, the result is otherwise.
- SunGazing provides nutrition to both mind and body which provides for our energy requirement. Hence, human can get rid of the need to eat food which promotes weight loss in a healthy way.
Sungazing is an interesting practice that touches the spiritual and psychological realms, which are very personal things. Everyone is wired a little differently and this practice isn’t for everyone, nor is it something I recommend. If you choose to partake, do your own research, be careful, be cautious, and document your experience.
The human eye is very sensitive, and prolonged exposure to direct sunlight can lead to solar retinopathy, pterygium,cataracts,and often blindness. Studies have shown that even when viewing a solar eclipse the eye can still be exposed to harmful levels of ultraviolet radiation.
SunGazing With Your Eyes Closed
The practice of SunGazing with your eyes closed is actually more powerful than SunGazing with your eyes open and can be done safely all day long. With them closed, the visible light spectrum is blocked but the other than visible light spectrum penetrates the cranium – x-rays, gamma rays, microwaves etc.
The after image which is present when you SunGaze or stare at a candle or light source, is actually the biophotons in your head illuminating. Biophotons are very healing – that is why they discredit that after image and refer to it like it is a mirage, and just to be ignored.
The biophotons react to other than visible light – the light that penetrates the cranium when your eyes are closed and you look at the sun. Biophotons will expand and fill the entire cranium and then the whole body, as you focus on the inner Light, that Light becomes more coherent.
The coherent light is a more potent healer than anything else we have on earth. Illness and disease cannot exist inside a coherent energy field. There are 13 different LIGHTS inside the head – corresponding to Jesus and the 12 disciples – these are the Light frequencies required to cleanse and purify the Pranic body – the 2nd body up – not to be confused with the aura – to accomplish ascension – the Jesus thing.
But Wait, There’s More!
I found another article about SunGazing that I thought was interesting and worth a look if this interests you. The article was written by Stasia Bliss for The Guardian Express (guardianlv.com):
NASA Confirms -Super Human Abilities Gained Through Sungazing
Ever wanted to be in more than one place at a time? That’s right, I’m talking about the super-human abilities that can be gained by those who follow the protocol for what’s known as sun-gazing, a valid practice recently confirmed by NASA.
Many proponents of this ancient technique, used by many cultures such as Mayan, Egyptian, Aztec, Tibetan and Indian yoga, report not only healing benefits to common illnesses, but obtaining super-human abilities such as advanced telepathy and going completely without the need for food.
Another Disclaimer: Do not engage in sungazing practices without proper training and medical supervision. Permanent eye injury and blindness may occur. Do not attempt to change your diet and live on sunlight or water alone. Before attempting any radical spiritual or dietary practice, seek qualified medical advice and spiritual supervision.
What is Sun Gazing?
Sun gazing (also known as sun-eating) is a strict practice of gradually introducing sunlight into your eyes at the lowest ultraviolet-index times of day – sunrise and sunset. Those who teach the practice say there are several rules to the practice. First, it must be done within the hour after sunrise or before sunset to avoid damaging the eyes. It is important to only look at the sun when it is orange or red according to the ancients. Looking at the sun when it is yellow or white, or uncomfortable in any way is not recommended.
Second, you must be barefoot, in contact with the actual earth – sand, dirt or mud; and finally, you must begin with only 10 seconds the first day, increasing by 10 second intervals each day you practice. Following these rules make the practice safe, says sources.
Nikolai Dolgoruky of the Ukraine calls himself a ‘sun-eater’. He has been practicing sun gazing for the past 12 years and has largely subsisted off solar energy since he began. Others have reported losing the need for food after only 9 months of sun gazing (by which time the practitioner has worked up to a maximum of 44 minutes).
After 9 months of practice, you need only walk barefoot on the earth for 45 minutes per day, 6 days in a row to further the process of what has been initiated by sun gazing.
Sun-gazing is a practice also called the HRM phenomenom, coined as such after Hira Ratan Manek, the man who submitted himself to NASA for scientific testing to confirm that he does indeed possess the almost ‘super-human’ ability of not eating, gained through his dedication to this interesting marvel.
Funded by NASA, a team of medical doctors at the University of Pennsylvania observed Hira 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for 100 days. NASA confirmed that he was indeed able to survive largely on light with occasionally a small amount of buttermilk or water during this time.
What happens to the body during Sun Gazing?
During your first 3 months of practice, the suns energy is moving through the eyes and charging the hypothalamus tract, says those who have studied this technique and used it. This Science/Medical Team wanted to observe and examine his retina, pineal gland and brain, therefore this observation team was led by Dr. Andrew B. Newberg, a leading authority on the brain and also featured in the recent movie “What the Bleep Do We Know”, and by Dr. George C. Brenard, the leading authority on the pineal gland.
Initial results found that the gray cells in HRM’s brain are regenerating. 700 photographs have been taken where the neurons were reported to be active and not dying. Furthermore, the pineal gland was expanding and not shrinking which is typically what happens after mid fifties and its maximum average size is about 6 x 6 mm, however for HRM, it has been measured to be at 8 x 11 mm. The hypothalamus tract is the pathway to the rear of the retina which leads to the brain.
The brain then, over time, becomes activated by the energy supply being received by the sun. You will first experience a relief of mental tension and worry, since most worry is fueled by the energy received by the foods we eat. Since food gets it’s energy from the sun, it is said to be readily available to sun-eaters without the trouble of digestion. Though hunger is said to eventually cease, it is fine to continue eating regularly during initial stages, until appetite disappears naturally.
Another benefit early on is said to be an increase in confidence and an ability to easily solve your problems, as you are without tension. Everyone has at least a bit of psychosis, but during the first few months of sun gazing practice, it is reported that these attitudes go away and a positive nature gracefully replaces the old persona full of fears.
By the end of 3 months, the gazing time will have increased to 15 minutes per day.
Reports on sun gazing say that the bad qualities normally associated with any person will gradually disappear and good qualities will remain, explaining that ‘bad qualities’ only develop in the absence of sunlight. Bad qualities like anger, fear, jealousy, lust – are said to disappear – and be replaced by a certain confidence and ‘spiritual knowing’ that senses more purely the heart of an issue.
At 3-6 months of gazing, the studies show that physical diseases start to disappear.
They say that by the time one is gazing 30 minutes per day (building up 10 seconds per day) all the colors of the sun will have reached the brain. Color therapists attribute their healing of certain diseases to flooding the body and brain with the particular color that is lacking – depending on the ailment.
For example, in liver disease, the color green is deficient. The kidneys need red, and the heart, yellow. All of the organs and all of the systems are said to respond to different colors of the rainbow, which is why it is also recommended to eat a diet rich in a variety of colors. It is recommended during the 3-4 month period that you use autosuggestion to see your body already healed of any perceived weakness or disease.
This action will facilitate the process of returning to wholeness.
As you continue the process, it is reported that after 6 months, the energy stored from the technique is no longer being used for repairing the body or the mind and can move now into supporting you in gaining more super-human abilities.
How can we take in sunlight?
How can the body take in sunlight in such a manner as to sustain life? Is it possible that some of our dormant “junk” DNA may become active and allow us to utilize Solar Energetic Factors in the same way that plants do? Let us examine a possible method.
There is a pathway from the retina, to the hypothalamus, called the retino-hypothalamic tract. This brings information about the dark &light cycles to supra-chiasmatic nucleus (SCN) of the hypothalamus. From the SCN, impulses along the nerve travel via the pineal nerve (Sympathetic nervous system) to the pineal gland. These impulses inhibit the production of melatonin. When these impulses stop (at night or in dark, when the light no longer stimulates the hypothalamus) pineal inhibition ceases, and melatonin is released. The pineal gland is therefore a photosensitive organ and an important timekeeper for the human body.
The unexplored process of energy absorption, transformation, and processing from the Sun may occur here. The activation of pineal gland is a key step in psychic, spiritual and energy transformation processes. Suffice it to say that in this gland, energy processing and distribution can take place. The pineal gland is the subtle controller of all endocrine glands, therefore controlling the endocrine system. Through secretion of melatonin, it also regulates the circadian rhythm, sleep wake cycle and it also slows down aging process. It has psychic properties and it is said to be the seat of soul or mind.
Sunlight may enter the eyes and be directly stored in the pineal gland. Pineal activation and charging through solar energy could be a vital step in higher evolution. Once activated and charged by the Pineal gland, Solar Energetic factors may be transformed into electrical, magnetic or chemical energies in body. Once processed, this energy must be transported & must be stored somewhere. If the initial processing of this energy starts in the pineal gland, how does it get to the rest of the body?
What’s Beyond Healing?
By seven and a half months of gazing, now at 35 minutes, need and desire for food is dwindling. According to sun gazing experts, food is not actually needed to maintain the body, only energy – and ‘sun-eating’ provides that energy. By 9 months, all taste for food, including aroma, all hunger pains and cravings disappear. Those who make it this far say that they report a noticeable ’change’ in the way their brain feels – like it’s “charged up.” After 9 months of sun-gazing – reaching a maximum of 44 minutes – it is advised that you give up sun-gazing and redirect your attention now to the Earth.
For 6 days straight, one is to walk barefoot on the earth, 45 minutes per day.
During this barefoot walking, the pineal gland is said to become activated. Professional sun gazers and those researching the science say that each toe is connected to a specific gland, and by walking barefoot on the Earth, you activate these glands. The big toe is thought to be aligned with the pineal gland, the second toe with the pituitary, then the hypothalamus, thalamus and finally the pinky toe correlates to the amygdala. Walking barefoot, with the sun now falling on the top of your head, practitioners claim to create a sort of magnetic field in and around your body that recharges you and your brain.
Apparently this walking barefoot part is the most important aspect of the practice. As you continue walking on the Earth, this is when the magic really begins. The pineal gland is activated more and more by this walking procedure. Intellect is said to increase, along with memory. The pineal gland has navigational and psychic capabilities, meaning telepathy, the possibility of flight… now we are getting somewhere! Have you ever thought you would like to have your body in more than one place at a time? Well, sun-gazing is said to be the magical key to such abilities.
If you can barefoot walk 45 minutes every day for a year – you are golden. At that point, only a maintenance of 3-4 days a week is necessary to maintain the capabilities you have acquired.
Are there any dangers?
Doctors and eye care professionals caution against looking directly at the sun, saying that it will damage the retina. However, if done correctly, sun-gazing at the correct times of day, sunrise and sunset, studies show there is no risk of damaging the eyes.
Those who have been sun gazing for many years have had their eyes checked to show no damage, though it is advised that you have your eyes checked in the first few weeks of your practice, so you can know for yourself.
To sum it all up…
Remember, it’s 10 seconds the first day, at sunrise or sunset, adding 10 seconds per day each day there after. After 90 days of accumulative gazing equaling 44 minutes, you cease the gazing and start the barefoot walking 45 minutes per day for 6 days. At this point, I could imagine, hey – if you made it this far, what’s a year of barefoot walking an hour per day to keep it all? You will have to try it out and see for yourself.
A flower essence is the vibrational imprint of a flower that has been transferred and stabilized in water. Flower essences are infusions of flowers in water, that are potentized and then stabilized in a solution of brandy and water. They contain no scent or perfume and should not be confused with essential oils.
Flower essences are a botanically based healing system that has existed since ancient times. Evidence suggests flower essences have been used by civilizations such as the Ancient Egyptians, Sumerians and Chinese. They have also been used by most indigenous peoples all over the world such as the Native Americans and the Australian Aboriginals.
They believed the morning dew that appeared on the flowers contained healing properties. They would gather this dew and use it as ‘medicine’. Every flower has a particular knowledge that it imparts into that dew. When an individual ingests the dew, they integrate that healing information into their bio-energetic field.
In the 1930s, a British physician by the name of Dr. Edward Bach modernized this ancient concept of dew gathering for healing purposes. He believed that the root of all disease was a result of the personality being out of alignment with the soul.
He asserted that disease could only be eradicated when an individual was in a state of emotional equilibrium. He succeeded in creating a simple and non-invasive system that people could use to heal themselves. He gave up his successful medical practice and dedicated his life to cultivating and standardizing such a system. He identified 37 English wildflowers + 1 water essence that correspond to 38 different human emotions. Dr. Edward Bach is the father of modern day flower essence therapy.
How Do They Work?
Research has recently proved that water has a memory. Flower Essences are made by infusing the blooms particular vibration into water and then stabilizing it. Flower essences works on the premise that every flower has a particular healing attribute in the form of a vibrational frequency.
Similarly, an emotional imbalance also has a vibrational frequency. So if an individual is fearful, they may ingest the flower essence that floods their body with vibrations of courage in order to counteract the fear and begin to resonate in a state of courage and fearlessness. This is called sympathetic resonance and is the science behind this system.
Can you think of a time that you felt better simply by being around a happy person? Vibrations can be contagious and flower essences are a way to acquire the positive vibration of a particular flower.
The human body has within and surrounding it an electrical network. When we experience health, this electrical network is balanced and fully connected. When something in our life or environment threatens that balance, the electrical system responds by either short-circuiting or overloading.
That imbalance in the electrical system immediately impacts the central nervous system. The body then goes into high gear in an effort to correct the imbalance. If your body does not succeed, we physically manifest the imbalance. We get a cold or a headache, or our allergy pops up again or another migraine belts us. Or we get back pain, or our neck goes out again. Or we become seriously ill.
Flower essences work directly with both the electrical and the central nervous systems. By taking the correct essences, we immediately balance the electrical system, stabilize the nervous system, and stop the domino effect that leads to illness.
If we wind up getting sick, we can take the flower essences that will then stabilize and balance the electrical and nervous systems while the body gets on with the business of fighting off the problem. By assisting this process, flower essences drastically reduce our recovery time. In short, by using the essences, we are not asking our body to pull double duty ~ to do the work to heal us systemically and rebalance our electrical and central nervous systems.
The field of psychoneuroimmunology acknowledges the harmful influence of stress on the immune and nervous system. Flower Essences can help. They are a gentle and effective way of supporting a wide array of emotional dispositions that prevent an individual from living a happy, stress-free life. They can also comfort us in times of distress.
Flower essences can also help us recognize, resolve, or release different conditioned ways of perceiving the world and can help us experience greater well-being and harmony in our lives. By creating harmony within us, we often notice distinct changes in ourselves physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
Flower essences can help us reduce stress in our lives, resolve old traumas, and deal with painful or negative emotions. They have helped many people to know and understand themselves, so they could more creatively find a sense of direction and life work. They can be used for short-term support in coping with difficult situations, as well as for long-term growth and change. Most people report feeling better about themselves and find an improved attitude toward life.
Some people believe that flowers are a physical manifestation of a universal principle or aspect of God. Many of those who use flower essences over a long period of time report a deepening sense of spiritual understanding. Each flower seems to have a specific theme, lesson, or aspect of a universal principle that it embodies. In this sense, flower essences represent the spirituality of flowers.
How To Use Flower Essences
Flower essences are a strong ally to wellness and can be integrated easily into any daily ritual. You can add them to any liquid that you ingest or apply topically such as morning coffee, water, juice, shampoos. You can also add them to your scent diffuser or mopping solution.
Suggested dosages are as follows:
Most flower essences can be used as they are from their original stock bottles. Use 4 drops under the tongue, repeat 4 times a day, or as needed. To enhance its effects, use it more often instead of increasing the number of drops. If you accidentally touch the glass pipette, rinse it thoroughly with hot water before putting the dropper back into the bottle to avoid contamination.
- Orally, with water
Add 4 drops to a glass with water, repeat 4 times a day, or as needed.
It is not necessary to take flower essences orally. You can use any flower essence directly on the physical body. Some people like rubbing a few drops on chakra points or acupuncture points, or any place where your intuition directs you.
They can also be used by adding 7 drops to a sprayer bottle filled with water and misting a room or yourself. You can also spray clothes before ironing them, or spray your pillow before sleeping.
Another way of using a flower essence is to add a dropper full to your bath. What is important to remember is that flower essences are vibrational solutions, and surrounding yourself with them, inside or outside, is the best way to experience their effects.
- Using with children
Babies and children respond very well to flower essences. A powerful and simple way to use them is by placing a few drops on your hands and touching gently the baby or child. You can also use 4 drops in a glass, sippy-cup, or baby bottle, with water. Repeat 4 or more times a day or as needed.
- Using with animals
Pets and animals respond very well to flower essences. Use 4 drops in the animal’s drinking water, repeat 4 times per day, or as needed. For horses or other large animals, use 10 to 20 drops at a time.
Another powerful way to use them is by placing a few drops on your hands and stroking the animal down the spine or other parts of the body. The length of time to use an essence may vary from a few days to a few weeks. A guideline is to observe the animal’s behavior and use as needed.
- Dosage bottles
If you are taking more than one flower essence at the same time, a convenient way to do so is to prepare what is called a dosage bottle, also known as a mixing bottle.
To prepare a dosage bottle, add 4 drops of each flower essence to a 1 ounce bottle (30 mL) filled with a solution of 75% water and 25% brandy, and take 4 drops, 4 or more times a day, as needed.
The 38 Remedies
Each of the 38 remedies discovered by Dr Bach is directed at a particular characteristic or emotional state. To select the remedies you need, think about the sort of person you are and the way you are feeling.
- Agrimony – mental torture behind a cheerful face
- Aspen – fear of unknown things
- Beech – intolerance
- Centaury – the inability to say ‘no’
- Cerato – lack of trust in one’s own decisions
- Cherry Plum – fear of the mind giving way
- Chestnut Bud – failure to learn from mistakes
- Chicory – selfish, possessive love
- Clematis – dreaming of the future without working in the present
- Crab Apple – the cleansing remedy, also for self-hatred
- Elm – overwhelmed by responsibility
- Gentian – discouragement after a setback
- Gorse – hopelessness and despair
- Heather – self-centredness and self-concern
- Holly – hatred, envy and jealousy
- Honeysuckle – living in the past
- Hornbeam – tiredness at the thought of doing something
- Impatiens – impatience
- Larch – lack of confidence
- Mimulus – fear of known things
- Mustard – deep gloom for no reason
- Oak – the plodder who keeps going past the point of exhaustion
- Olive – exhaustion following mental or physical effort
- Pine – guilt
- Red Chestnut – over-concern for the welfare of loved ones
- Rock Rose – terror and fright
- Rock Water – self-denial, rigidity and self-repression
- Scleranthus – inability to choose between alternatives
- Star of Bethlehem – shock
- Sweet Chestnut – Extreme mental anguish, when everything has been tried and there is no light left
- Vervain – over-enthusiasm
- Vine – dominance and inflexibility
- Walnut – protection from change and unwanted influences
- Water Violet – quiet self-reliance leading to isolation
- White Chestnut – unwanted thoughts and mental arguments
- Wild Oat – uncertainty over one’s direction in life
- Wild Rose – drifting, resignation, apathy
- Willow – self-pity and resentment
This post can also be found at The Encyclopedia of Herbology, a page which has more in depth information on each of the 38 remedies.
Dr Bach’s central message:
We are all healers. Everyone can use the remedies. Everyone can heal and in the process understand who they are and take charge of their own destinies.
From my personal blog, Hey It’s Me, we have this post about Healing With The Brotherhood Of Light which I thought might be appropriate for Alternative Therapies, since it is an alternative therapy that is easy to do, and surprisingly effective ~ if you can suspend your disbelief and simply give it a try.
So this is what I did today! I had a session with the are you ready for it? The Co-Creative White Brotherhood Medical Assistance Program !! I know how crazy that must sound! But it was amazing and wonderful, and, well… I’ve set up a series of appointments for every Tuesday morning.
So what the heck is it? Some kind of weird cultish white supremacist wacko thing? Not at all.
I found out about it when I read a book called, “Behaving As If The God In All Life Mattered” which I bought because I loved the title. That book talked about the MAP (Medical Assistance Program) and so I bought that book as well. Now, this was somewhere in the neighborhood of 10 years ago…. and I got a lot of benefit from it for a while. Then, my interests and energy shifted, and I put it aside.
And then stuff happened, a lot of stuff, and I started to have the thought that I should pull it out of my “bag of tricks” and start doing it again.
Again the question, so what the heck is it?
Well, it’s a little hard to explain, but I’ll give it a go. It’s an organized method of contacting the healing energy of spirit, your guides, the Devas of healing, and that universal source of love and light that we often benefit from without even realizing it. Once contacted, you set up a “meeting” and a healing session.
The meeting and the healing session is a sort of meditation that you simply allow to happen, and participate in as the receiver of the energy, the balancing, and the clearing, or whatever else is required based on the issue you are requesting assistance with.
You can read a little bit more about it here: What Is Medical Assistance Program?
How do you do it?
If you are interested in trying it out, I would recommend that you buy the book. There is a lot of information connected with this simple process, and having the book will be extremely helpful if you have questions, or are unsure about it.
Here are links to both books on Amazon:
- Behaving As If The God In All Life Mattered
- MAP: The Co-Creative White Brotherhood Medical Assistance Program
The first thing you need to have is a way to be sure about your communication with your “team.” Intuitive knowing works well for some, but I needed a way to be absolutely sure that I wasn’t making it all up in my head.
So here’s what I did. I sat down and got quiet. Then, I asked my guides and angels to give me a clear signal of what a “Yes” answer would feel like in my body. For me, that came as a clenching of my solar plexus. I can’t remember what the “No” answer feeling was, and I should probably get that cleared up before my next session.
Anyway, that “Yes” answer signal has been extremely helpful to me over the years. I even used it once when I was trying to decide if buying an electric toothbrush was a good idea or not. And I will say, that I really really love my electric toothbrush! So. That’s what works for me.
You will need to figure out what works for you. It could be anything from a muscle twitch in your hand to a spontaneous smile. Do the meditation, and go with whatever feels right.
Next you will need a time and place where you can lay on your back, in a comfortable place, with absolutely no interruptions for an hour. Pillows, blankets, the floor, the bed… doesn’t matter where, just that you are warm and comfortable and have no worries about being interrupted or disrupted while having your session. Set an alarm so that you won’t be wondering what time it is, or possibly falling asleep and being “gone” for hours.
The First Session:
Before you begin your first session, make sure you are comfortable. Lay on your back, pillows under the knees, or wherever they need to be so that you feel very relaxed and comfortable. If it is too uncomfortable to lay on your back, you can also be in a relaxed sitting position. Either way, do not cross your legs, arms, or hands.
- Note: A “Coning” is what the author calls the healing session. The word coning doesn’t resonate well with me, so I usually say “session” instead, and it seems to work just fine.
To begin the session, state out loud, or to yourself: I would like to open a MAP coning. I would like to be connected with the following:
- Overlighting Deva of Healing ~ wait 10 seconds or use your “Yes” answer to confirm.
- Pan ~ wait 10 seconds or use your “Yes” answer to confirm.
- White Brotherhood Medical Unit ~ wait 10 seconds or use your “Yes” answer to confirm.
- Your higher self ~ wait 10 seconds or use your “Yes” answer to confirm.
I have a tendency to forget to call in my higher self when setting up a session, and always find myself calling in my highest guides, and all those in Spirit who love me. And I think it’s probably okay for you to call in anyone else you would want to have with you at the session.
Give yourself another ten to fifteen seconds to adjust to the energy.
The “coning” is now open and you are ready to begin. It’s that simple. It is not important if you did not have any sensations as the coning was activated. Your sensations or lack of sensations will not affect the quality of the coning in any way. What is important is that you be the one to call it into activation.
The first session is for scanning purposes only. This is the one session when you need not talk to your team if you don’t wish. The purpose of this session is to key you into their level, identify your various energy patterns, and get an appropriate medical team identified and working with you. This team will work with you during all your medical sessions.
Sometimes there will be visiting experts, and sometimes the team will shift and change. You do not have to do anything special for this to occur. Your primary team will be those who work with you during the majority of your sessions.
The initial scanning session will last an hour. You may feel gentle shifts and energy flowing throughout your body during this session. Or you may even feel like you are floating or moving. You also may feel absolutely nothing. Don’t worry about this. The work is going on.
When your timer goes off, the session is over. This is when you follow the protocol for ending the session.
- If this is your first session, request that you be given your code – a symbol, word, or sensation that you can use to identify your team. Whatever pops into your mind next will be it.
- Don’t discount what happens once you request the code. My code word is “code” which I found so doubtful that I tried to turn it into codex. So for me, it’s “code ~ codex” because I am not quite sure which is right. So, don’t do what I did. Just accept that first word, symbol, or sensation.
The protocol for ending the session is quite simple. Focus on each member separately, thanking that member and asking to be disconnected. To be sure that the disconnection has taken place, you can ask “Am I disconnected?” and then wait for your “Yes” or “No” answer. If the answer is a “No” simply state again that the session is now over, thank you so much, and please disconnect me.
Wait twenty-four hours before opening the next session if this was your first one. The body needs that time to adjust to the impact of the coning and the expansion of working with the “White Brotherhood Team.” Once you have waited the initial twenty-four hours, you do not need to wait that long again. You will be able to initiate a session anytime you feel a need.
I have a planned schedule of once a week on Tuesday mornings. This schedule can be changed if need be. I like a planned schedule because it helps me to remember to do it. If planned schedules don’t work for you, that’s fine too.
Lie down on your back (or sit). Get comfortable. Cover yourself with a blanket if you wish. Set your alarm for 40 minutes.
To begin the session, state out loud, or to yourself: I would like to open a MAP coning. I would like to be connected with the following:
- Overlighting Deva of Healing ~ wait 10 seconds or use your “Yes” answer to confirm.
- Pan ~ wait 10 seconds or use your “Yes” answer to confirm.
- White Brotherhood Medical Unit ~ visualize your team’s symbol or say the code word ~ wait 10 seconds or use your “Yes” answer to confirm.
- Your higher self ~ wait 10 seconds or use your “Yes” answer to confirm.
Wait ten to fifteen seconds after activating the full coning so that your body can stabilize itself within the coning and with the team.
Now, focus your attention on the session and your team. If you can’t feel or sense your team, just keep your focus on the session. Describe as fully as you can how you are feeling. This includes how you feel physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Relax about what you are about to articulate. You get better with practice.
- Note: It is helpful to speak to your team out loud because this makes it easier to maintain your focus on what you are feeling, however it is not necessary. You can talk to your team silently and it will be just as effective. Do whatever works best for you.
This is kind of like when you make a visit to the Dr’s office, and you talk about what it is that brought you there. When describing symptoms to your team, be as precise and as accurate as possible. Try not to go for generalities, and avoid giving a name to your symptoms. For example, instead of saying “I have asthma.” Say, “It’s hard for me to breathe when…” And then describe the physical feelings and the situations that trigger them.
Allow forty minutes for the session to be completed. If you feel uncomfortable during the session, tell your team what you are feeling, and then relax and trust that at the end, whatever adjustments and shifts that were making you uncomfortable will have been completed.
It is best to move as little as possible during a session, but if you feel a strong need to move or change position, tell your team and ask if it will be okay. Any time you have questions, ask them. Follow your intuition and if you are unsure about something, speak up.
At the end of forty minutes, thank your team, and close the session by saying out loud, or silently: I’d like to close the coning. I’d like to disconnect from:
- My Higher Self
- My White Brotherhood Medical Team
- The Overlighting Deva of Healing
Thank and disconnect from anyone else you may have invited to stand in. Wait for a few moments, and then verify that you have been disconnected.
Yay! Now it’s done. So, how do you feel? What happened? Anything interesting? You might want to write about it, or make a few notes. And, as always after an energy session, drink a glass of water and if possible go outside to get grounded and clear.
What Was My Experience?
My experience today was really interesting. I hadn’t done this in such a long time and I didn’t really remember all the exact protocols, so I just did it as an initial scan. I did, however, mention to them that I felt as if I had an energy sucking demon sitting on my chest that I didn’t quite know how to get rid of.
The energy was great. At one point I felt as if my mind expanded past the confines of my brain and that was really nice. Grandfather, one of my Native American, guides showed up, haven’t seen him in a long time, so that was fun.
Unfortunately, I was using my phone as my timer, and a flash flood alert jarred me out of it for a few moments right towards the end of the session. But I was able to slide right back in. And we did an interesting thing of taking my energy sucking demon and giving him a home in a cool chunk of rock that I brought home from my camping trip.
I promised him that if he would hang out in the rock, that I would give him all my angst and agony to feed on if he would agree that they were now HIS and no longer MINE. I also gave him permission to pull any of my “bad” energy off of me whenever I walk by. And so, instead of “getting rid” of him, we made friends, and he now has a nice spot next to a snakeskin, a skull, and a multi headed dragon incense burner. He seems happy there. I burned a cone of Myrrh for him as an offering of thanks. Fun, huh?
I feel quite a bit lighter, and cleaner. So.. it was all good!
“Two years ago, I heard about a therapist in Hawaii who cured a complete ward of criminally insane patients–without ever seeing any of them.
The psychologist would study an inmate’s chart and then look within himself to see how he created that person’s illness. As he improved himself, the patient improved.
“When I first heard this story, I thought it was an urban legend. How could anyone heal anyone else by healing himself? How could even the best self-improvement master cure the criminally insane? It didn’t make any sense. It wasn’t logical, so I dismissed the story.
“However, I heard it again a year later. I heard that the therapist had used a Hawaiian healing process called ho ‘oponopono. I had never heard of it, yet I couldn’t let it leave my mind. If the story was at all true, I had to know more.
I had always understood “total responsibility” to mean that I am responsible for what I think and do. Beyond that, it’s out of my hands. I think that most people think of total responsibility that way. We’re responsible for what we do, not what anyone else does–but that’s wrong.
“The Hawaiian therapist who healed those mentally ill people would teach me an advanced new perspective about total responsibility. His name is Dr. Ihaleakala Hew Len. We probably spent an hour talking on our first phone call. I asked him to tell me the complete story of his work as a therapist.
He explained that he worked at Hawaii State Hospital for four years. That ward where they kept the criminally insane was dangerous. Psychologists quit on a monthly basis. The staff called in sick a lot or simply quit. People would walk through that ward with their backs against the wall, afraid of being attacked by patients. It was not a pleasant place to live, work, or visit.
“Dr. Len told me that he never saw patients. He agreed to have an office and to review their files. While he looked at those files, he would work on himself. As he worked on himself, patients began to heal.
“‘After a few months, patients that had to be shackled were being allowed to walk freely,’ he told me. ‘Others who had to be heavily medicated were getting off their medications. And those who had no chance of ever being released were being freed.’ I was in awe.
‘Not only that,’ he went on, ‘but the staff began to enjoy coming to work. Absenteeism and turnover disappeared. We ended up with more staff than we needed because patients were being released, and all the staff was showing up to work. Today, that ward is closed.’
“This is where I had to ask the million dollar question: ‘What were you doing within yourself that caused those people to change?’
“‘I was simply healing the part of me that created them,’ he said. I didn’t understand. Dr. Len explained that total responsibility for your life means that everything in your life- simply because it is in your life–is your responsibility. In a literal sense the entire world is your creation.
“Whew. This is tough to swallow. Being responsible for what I say or do is one thing. Being responsible for what everyone in my life says or does is quite another. Yet, the truth is this: if you take complete responsibility for your life, then everything you see, hear, taste, touch, or in any way experience is your responsibility because it is in your life.
“This means that terrorist activity, the president, the economy or anything you experience and don’t like–is up for you to heal. They don’t exist, in a manner of speaking, except as projections from inside you. The problem isn’t with them, it’s with you, and to change them, you have to change you.
“I know this is tough to grasp, let alone accept or actually live. Blame is far easier than total responsibility, but as I spoke with Dr. Len, I began to realize that healing for him and in ho ‘oponopono means loving yourself.
“If you want to improve your life, you have to heal your life. If you want to cure anyone, even a mentally ill criminal you do it by healing you.
I asked Dr. Len how he went about healing himself. What was he doing, exactly, when he looked at those patients’ files?
“‘I just kept saying, ‘I’m sorry’ and ‘I love you’ over and over again,’ he explained.
“Turns out that loving yourself is the greatest way to improve yourself, and as you improve yourself, you improve your world.
“Let me give you a quick example of how this works: one day, someone sent me an email that upset me. In the past I would have handled it by working on my emotional hot buttons or by trying to reason with the person who sent the nasty message.
“This time, I decided to try Dr. Len’s method. I kept silently saying, I’m sorry’ and ‘I love you,’ I didn’t say it to anyone in particular. I was simply evoking the spirit of love to heal within me what was creating the outer circumstance.
“Within an hour I got an e-mail from the same person. He apologized for his previous message. Keep in mind that I didn’t take any outward action to get that apology. I didn’t even write him back. Yet, by saying ‘I love you,’ I somehow healed within me what was creating him.
“I later attended a ho ‘oponopono workshop run by Dr. Len. He’s now 70 years old, considered a grandfatherly shaman, and is somewhat reclusive. He praised my book, The Attractor Factor. He told me that as I improve myself, my book’s vibration will raise, and everyone will feel it when they read it. In short, as I improve, my readers will improve.
“‘What about the books that are already sold and out there?’ I asked.
“‘They aren’t out there,’ he explained, once again blowing my mind with his mystic wisdom. ‘They are still in you.’ In short, there is no out there. It would take a whole book to explain this advanced technique with the depth it deserves.
“Suffice It to say that whenever you want to improve anything in your life, there’s only one place to look: inside you. When you look, do it with love.”
It’s the attraction factor – like attracts like – his God-self was so strong that it attracted the God-self in others.”
Article by: Joe Vitale
This might not be a pretty picture but it represents something amazing. The red dot graphic foot marks the Kidney One acupressure point on the Kidney Meridian. If you were to take a hold of your foot and place the thumb on that location, it would definitely relieve an aching foot.
What else can benefit from applying pressure to the Kidney One acupressure point?
- It can help regulate blood pressure
- Relieves dizziness and faintness
- Clears the mind
- Improve memory, concentration, and mental alertness
- It can help hot flashes
- Relieves anxiety
- Restores energy
- Increases general vitality in the body
So, maybe it’s time to press that red dot.
Source: Balanced Woman’s Blog
Sleep is one of nature’s greatest inventions and blessings of life. It is a periodic rest of the body which is absolutely essential for its efficient functioning. It has been called ” most cheering restorative of tired bodies. ” Sleep is the indispensable condition to the recuperation of energy. We go to bed fatigued and get up refreshed. Sleep repairs the wear and tear of the body and mind incurred during waking hours.
Nothing is so restorative to the nerves as sound and uninterrupted sleep. Sleep is thus a vital element in a total way of life. It is a basic need in man’s mental as well as physical life. During sleep most of the functions of the body are carried on at the lowest level possible in health.
Heat production is from 10 to 15 per cent below the basal level. The mechanism regulating the body temperature are less sensitive than in the waking state and are depressed by 0.5 to 1.0 degree F. The rate of the heart is reduced by 10 to 30 beats per minute and a decline in blood pressure of about 20 mm occurs in quiet restful sleep. The urine volume is considerably reduced, but its concentration in solids is increased. The tone of all the skeletal muscles is lessened. The eyes are usually rolled upward and the pupils constricted.
Loss of sleep exerts seriously detrimental effects upon the nervous system. Long periods of wakefulness may cause profound psychological changes such as loss of memory, irritability, hallucination and even schizophrenic manifestations. During the last World War, prisoners in Nazi concentration camps who kept awake for days by strong lights and blaring wireless sets, collapsed.
Sleep Versus Rest
For correct living, it is essential to differential between sleep and rest. At rest the body is disturbed by all exterior noises ; but in sleep it is screened from them by partial loss of consciousness and also by what is called ” dream protection. ” One useful purpose of the dream is to convert outside noises that might awake the sleeping person, into fantasies that do not disturb him.
During rest the limbs are normal, but in sleep they swell. Blood flows from the brain, distends the arteries, and makes the limbs bigger. IN sleep more muscles are relaxed than in rest, though the sleeping person changes his position about 35 times in one night, without knowing it. Many organs which work during rest suspend their activities in sleep. Thus the recouping value of sleep is much more than that of rest or simple lying down.
Theories of sleep
Many theories of sleep have been advanced to explain the temporary loss of consciousness which we know as sleep. The oldest theory is that sleep is induced by a reduction in the blood supply to the brain or at least to conscious centers. This is known as ischemic theory. Even the ancient Greek physicians were aware that the carotid artery was in a way concerned with the onset of sleep. The name itself expresses this belief. The Greek word ‘ Karotides’ for carotid arteries is derived from karoo which means ‘put to sleep.’
In modern times, the drowsiness after a meal, presumably due to the diversion of blood from the brain to the digestive organs, is cited in support of the ischemic theory. Another important theory about sleep is the chemical theory.
As a result of experiments in the metabolism of sleeping subjects, it is considered that the fatigue inducing sleep may be a mild form of blood poisoning or toxaemia. This ” poisoning” is believed to be brought on by the expenditure of energy during the waking hours. According to this theory, every contraction of a muscle and every impulse passing through the brain or the nerves breaks down a certain amount of tissue. The debris from broken down tissue is then thrown into the bloodstream. In the waking state, much of the waste from broken down tissue is got rid of through the natural eliminating processes of lungs, kidneys, bowels and skin.
But there comes a saturation point when there is such an accumulation of waste that it cannot be disposed of by these processes and it then invades the grey matter of the brain. In such an eventuality, mental and physical alertness are impaired. It is nature’s warning that the waste product must be reduced to replenish the lost energy. So we get tired and the urge to get sleep becomes irresistible.
During sleep, the cells and tissues that break down to produce toxic waste become less active and the production of toxic waste is vastly reduced. Simultaneously, constructive activities take place within the body during sleep, which rebuild the broken down tissue.
Another theory places a sleeping center in the hypothalamus. Many of the bodily changes in sleep such as constriction of pupils, reduced frequency of heart beat, increased gastric tone and secretion are manifestations of the activity of hypothalamus nuclei, especially parasympathetic centers. Perhaps some of the sleeping pills affect this center in the brain.
Although the various theories have certain amount of experimental evidence to support them, none has really solved what is the most mysterious process in our lives. All we know is that sleep substitutes constructive measures for the destructive processes of our waking hours. We cannot live without sleep.
Another mystery about sleep is that no two persons need the same amount of sleep. Dr. Nathaniel Kleitman, Associate Professor of Physiology at the University of Chicago, who conducted years of extensive experiments at the University’s “Sleeping Laboratory” says that there is no more a normal duration of sleep than there is normal height and weight. A study of 25 subjects spread over thousands of nights showed that the average amount of sleep needed to feel well rested is seven-and-a-half hours, though individuals varied from six to nine hours.
According to Dr. Dennis Williams, a noted authority on sleep, the amount of sleep needed for an individual’s well-being, is determined by what he feels he needs, not by what other people, including the doctor, think is reasonable. On the whole, women sleep from 45 minutes to one hour more than men. The amount of sleep required varies at different ages as follows :
- New Born : 18 to 20 hours
- Growing children : 10 to 12 hours
- Adults : 6 to 9 hours
- Aged persons : 5 to 7 hours
The depth of ordinary restful sleep fluctuates throughout the sleep. In most adults, sleep deepens through the first hour, after which it lightens rather sharply and then more gradually until morning or until the usual time of wakening. In growing children, however, sleep deepens a second time for a little while.
According to Dr. Lindlahr, a famous naturopath, two hours before and two hours after midnight are the most valuable for sleep of all the twenty-four hours of the day. In these four hours, mental and physical vigor are at their lowest ebb and sleep is soundest and most natural.
It is believed that three-quarters of our sleep consists of what is called ‘ slow wave sleep.’ The restorative processes occur during this time. The remaining quarter is taken by what is called ‘rapid eye movement (REM) sleep.’ It is also called paradoxical or dreaming sleep and it comes in episodes of about 20 minutes duration about five times in a night. It involves dreaming, irregular heart rates, raised blood pressure and erection of the penis. It is in this phase of sleep that normal healthy young men may have wet dreams. Both forms of sleep are considered equally important, being normal sleeping rhythms.
There are many theories about good and bad sleeping positions. Practically everyone changes positions several times during sleep. Hence how one starts out is of no consequence. It is a good thing we do turn about in our beds. If we did not, we would awake in the morning stiff, having maintained the same position all night.
For proper sleep, however, one should not sleep on one’s back but on the side with one or both legs brought well up and the head and the shoulder slightly forward.
To Sleep Well
Sleeping pills are no remedy for sleeplessness. They are habit-forming and become less effective when taken continuously. They lower the I.Q. dull the brain and can prove fatal if taken in excess or before or after alcohol. The side-effect of sleeping pills include indigestion, skin rashes, lowered resistance to infection, circulatory and respiratory problems, poor appetite, high blood pressure,kidney and liver problems and mental confusion.
Sleeping well is an art. It needs a perfect blend of healthy habits and control of mind. A clean body and mind, relaxed mood, physical exercises, and perfect dietary control are some of the basic sleep-inducing methods. Unpleasant situations at bed time such as arguments, quarrels, watching a horror movie, listening to loud music which would create anxiety, fear, excitement and worries should be avoided. Such situations stimulate the cerebral cortex and tend to keep one awake.
The sleeping place should be well ventilated, with balanced temperature and free from noises. The bed should be neither too hard nor too soft, but comfortable. The pillow should not be too hard or too high. The bed clothes should be loose-fitting and light colored. Another important rule is not to have heavy food shortly before bed time.
Prana means ‘ vital force ‘ and Ayama means ‘ control ‘ in Sanskrit. Thus Pranayama means the control of the vital force through concentration and regulated breathing. By means of controlled breathing that is, inhaling and exhaling by holding the breath for a fixed time and changing the rhythm of inspiration and expiration, it is possible to influence the life-force in the body. Pranayama is the process by which such conscious control is achieved through controlled and rhythmical breathing .
Pranayama purifies the channels along which the life stream of ‘prana’ flows in the body and prevents various disorders. It increases one’s resistance to respiratory diseases. The best position in which to practice pranayama is the padmasana or lotus pose.
If for some reason that position is difficult to adopt, it can be done while sitting in any comfortable pose. The important thing is to keep the back, neck and head in a straight line. The body should be in its natural relaxed condition and this can be achieved by resting a few minutes in shavasan. If necessary, use your right finger and thumb on either side of the nose to control the right and left nostrils during inhalation and exhalation.
In practicing pranayama, a ratio of two to one should be maintained throughout, that is, the exhalation time should be double that required for inhalation. For instance, if inhalation takes 5 seconds, exhalation should take 10 seconds. Both inhalation and exhalation should be smooth and quiet.
Some varieties of pranayama beneficial in the treatment of common ailments are as follows :
This is also known as Nadishuddhi pranayama. Sit in any comfortable meditative pose, keeping your head,neck and spine erect. Rest your left hand on your left knee. Close your right nostril by pressing the tip of your right thumb against it. Breathe out slowly through the left nostril. Inhale slowly and deeply through the left nostril, keeping the right nostril closed. Close your left nostril with the little finger and ring finger of your right hand and exhale through the right nostril. Then inhale through the right nostril, keeping the left nostril closed and, lastly, exhale through the left nostril, keeping the right nostril closed.
This completes one round of anuloma-viloma. Repeat the entire process. Inhaling and exhaling should be done very slowly, without making any sound. This pranayama is a process of purification. It strengthens the lungs and calms the nerves. It helps cure cough and cold, insomnia, chronic headache and asthma.
Sit in any comfortable meditative pose. Inhale slowly, deeply and steadily through both nostrils with a low uniform sound through the glottis. Hold your breathe for a second or two after inhaling and then exhale noisily only through the left nostril, keeping the right nostril closed. Do this as often as required.
This pranayama clears the nasal passage and helps the functioning of the thyroid gland and benefits respiratory disorders, especially bronchitis and asthma. Persons suffering from high blood pressure should not practice ujjayi.
‘Bhastrika’ means ‘bellows.’ It is performed by instant and quick expiration of breath. There are many varieties of bhastrika. The simplest technique is as follows :
Sit in padmasana. Do 20 strokes of kapalbhati. Inhale and exhale rapidly, making a puffing sound. This is a good exercise for abdominal viscera and lungs.
Sit in padamasana or any other comfortable posture. Stick your tongue out about an inch from the lips, rolled up at the sides to form a channel like a bird’s beak. Suck in air through the channel. After a full inhalation, slowly close your mouth, hold your breath and exhale slowly through both nostrils. This completes the exercise. Repeat as required.
This pranayama cools the body and mind, activates the liver and bile and has beneficial effects on the circulation and body temperature.
In sitkari a sound is produced while inhaling by opening the mouth a little, placing the tip of the tongue against the lower front teeth and then sucking the air in slowly. After holding your breath, exhale through both nostrils. This exercise helps to control thirst, hunger and laziness.
‘Surya-nadi ‘ is the right nostril and ‘ChandraNadi’ is the left nostril. In this pranayama, one always uses the right nostril for inhalation. Sit in padmasan or any other suitable posture. Keep your head, neck and back straight. Inhale through the right nostril. Hold your breath and then exhale through the left nostril. Hold your breath and then exhale through the left nostril. Repeat as often as required.
This pranayama increases gastric juices and helps digestion. It also fortifies the nervous system and clears the sinuses.
In this pranayama, the buzzing sound of a bee is produced and hence it is called bhramari. Keep your mouth closed while inhaling. Exhale through both nostrils, producing the humming sound of a bee. This pranayama affects the ears, nose, eyes and mouth and makes the complexion glow. It also helps those suffering from insomnia.
The Yoga Therapy or ‘ yoga-chikitsa’ refers to the treatment of diseases by means of yogic exercises which may be physical or mental or both. It is a specialized form of yogic culture. This mode of treatment has been practiced in India from very ancient times. Many references to yoga have been made in the Upanishads. It was, however, Maharishi Patanjali who in about the first century B.C. gave a systematic account of the traditional yogic teaching.
The term ‘ Yoga’ is derived from the Sanskrit root ‘yug’ which means “to join” . It signifies union between the individual soul (jivatma) and the universal soul (parmatma). It aims at obtaining relief from pain and suffering. Basically, human evolution takes place on three different planes, namely physical, mental and spiritual. Yoga is a means of attaining perfect health by maintaining harmony and achieving optimum functioning on all three levels through complete self-control.
Yogic kriyas, asanas and pranayama constitute the physical basis of yoga. More information about them can be found here:
The practice of kriyas and asanas leads to excellent circulation. It also energizes and stimulates major endocrine glands of the body. Yogic exercises promote inner health and harmony, and their regular practice helps prevent and cure many common ailments. They also help eliminate tensions, be they physical, mental or emotional.
Pranayama slows down the ageing process. In ordinary respiration, one breathes roughly 15 times a minute, taking in approximately 20 cubic inches of air. In pranayama the breathing rate is slowed down to once or twice a minute and the breath inhaled is deep and full, taking nearly 100 cubic inches of air.
All yogic exercises should be performed on a clean mat, a carpet or a blanket covered with a cotton sheet. Clothing should be light and loose-fitting to allow free movement of the limbs. The mind should be kept off all disturbances and tensions. Regularity and punctuality in practicing yogic exercises is essential. Generally, 5 a.m. to 8 a.m. is the ideal time for yoga practices.
Asanas should always be practiced on an empty stomach. Shavasana should be practiced for a brief period before starting the rest of the exercises as this will create the right mental condition. Asanas should be performed at a leisurely slow-motion pace, maintaining poise and balance.
Yoga asanas and pranayama techniques are greatly enhanced if you have the help of a competent teacher.
A world famous physical educationist, Eugene Sandow, has very aptly said, ” Life is movement, stagnation is death. ” Physical exercise is essential for the maintenance of normal condition of life. Lack of natural exercise is one of the chief causes of weakness and ill-health.
In recent years, the need for exercise has been recognized even in sickness. Physio and occupational therapy are now standard procedures in medicine to restore the use of muscles and nerves that have been injured by disease or by accident. Patients with organic ailments are now advised to stay in bed for the minimum period considered necessary.
Exercise and Activity
For corrective living, it is essential to differentiate between exercise and activity. While both are important as they are involved in vital physical movement, they vary in degree and benefits. Both employ the body in voluntary movement.
Activity uses the body to a limited degree and generally to achieve a specific purpose. Exercise employs the body over the widest possible range of movement for the particular purpose of maintaining or acquiring muscle tone and control with maximum joint flexibility. Activity requires less physical effort and often less conscious effort once the routine has been established. Exercise demands considerable physical effort and is more beneficial as mental concentration is simultaneously employed.
Systematic physical exercise has many benefits. The more important benefits are mentioned below: Regular exercise taken properly can achieve the increased use of food by the body, which contributes to health and fitness. The basal metabolic rate and habitual body temperature will slowly rise during several weeks of physical exercise, if the program is not too hard. The healthy person usually has abundant body heat and a warm radiant glow.
- Regular progressive physical exercise can bring about the balance of automatic, or involuntary , nervous system. The tone of the vagus nerve, one of the nerves that control sensation and motion, is strengthened. This accounts for stronger pulse waves, higher metabolism and better circulation.
- Exercise can prevent or reduce gravitational ptosis or sag, as it is commonly called. Ptosis results from uneven flow of blood in the feet, legs and lower abdomen.
- Improved capillary action in the working of muscular and brain tissue results from exercise carried to the point of real endurance. This permits greater blood flow and gives the muscles, including the heart, more resistance to fatigue. Massage, heat and moderate exercise are relatively ineffective in producing additional capillary action as compared with vigorous exercise.
- The full use of the lungs in vigorous exercise can reduce or prevent lung congestion due to lymph accumulation.
- Gas and intra-intestinal accumulations can be reduced by exercise that acts to knead and squeeze or vibrate the intraintestinal mass.
- Better respiratory reserve is developed by persistent exercise. This ensures better breath holding, especially after a standard exercise. With greater respiratory reserves, exercise become easier.
- Improvement in tone and function of veins can be accomplished by repetitiously squeezing and draining the blood out of them and then allowing them to fill.
- Sweating in exercise aids kidneys by helping to eliminate the waste matter from the body.
- Consistent exercise leads to improvement in quality of blood. Studies have shown improved hemoglobin levels, relatively greater alkalinity, improved total protein content and a grater red cell count.
- Systemic exercise promotes physical strength and mental vigor and strengthens will power and self control leading to harmonious development of the whole system.
Exercise promotes longevity Medical researchers at Harvard and Standford Universities who studied the habits and health of 17,000 middle-aged and older men, reported the first scientific evidence that even modest exercise helps prolong life.
Dr. Ralph S. Paffenberger, the visiting professor of epidemiology at the Harvard School of Pubic Health, who is the principal author of the report said, ” We have found a direct relationship between the level of physical activity and the length of life in the college men we have studied. ” He added,” This is the first good evidence that people who are active and fit have a longer life span than those who are not. ”
A strong connection between a hard and a healthy hard has also been convincingly demonstrated in the same study. The study showed that the less active persons ran a three times higher risk of suffering a fatal heart attack than did those who worked the hardest. Review of fatal heart attacks revealed that the less active men were also three times more likely to die unexpectedly and rapidly within an hour after the attack.
A parallel research report from doctors in Dulles also concluded, after a study of the lives and habits of 6,000 men and women, that the physically fit were less likely to develop hypertension. Dr. Steven N. Blair who headed the research group said, ” We followed the physical health and habits of these people for an average of four-and-a-half years and the data showed that the lack of physical fitness leads to hypertension. ”
Exercise increases calorie output. The body fat can be reduced by regular exercise. It is therefore, useful for weight reduction in conjunction with restricted food intake. According to a study by Dr. Peter Wood of Stanford University Medical School, author of “California Diet and Exercise Programme”, very active people eat about 600 more calories daily than their sedentary counterparts but weight about 20 per cent less.
Up to 15 hours after vigorous exercise, the body continues to burn calories at a higher rate than it would have without exercise. Moderate physical exercise has been found to be accompanied by less obesity and lower cholesterol levels. Regular exercise plays an important role in the fight against stress. It provides recreation and mental relaxation besides keeping the body physically and mentally fit. It is nature’s best tranquilizer.
Chronic fatigue caused by poor circulation can be remedied by undertaking some exercise on a daily basis. It helps relieve tension and induces sleep. Moderate physical exercise at the end of a try day can bring a degree of freshness and renewed energy.
Exercise also plays an important role in the treatment of depression. According to Dr. Robert Brown, a clinical associate professor at the University of Virginia School of Medicine, ” Exercise produces chemical and psychological changes that improves your mental health. It changes the levels of hormones in blood and may elevate your beta-endorphins (mood-affecting brain chemicals). Exercise also gives a feeling of accomplishment and thereby reduces the sense of helplessness. ”
Methods of Exercise
Several systems of exercise have been developed over the years, the most popular among them being the Swedish system and yoga asanas, the later having been practiced from ancient times in India. Whichever system you choose to adopt, the exercises should be performed systematically, regularly and under proper guidance. To be really useful, exercise should be taken in such a manner as to bring into action all the muscles of the body in a natural way.
Walking is one such exercise. It is, however, so gentle in character that one must walk several kilometers in a brisk manner to constitute a fair amount of exercise. Other forms of good exercise are swimming, cycling, horse-riding, tennis, etc.
Vigorous exercise of any kind should not be taken for an hour and a half after eating, nor immediately before meals. Weak patients and those suffering from serious diseases like cancer, heart trouble, tuberculosis and asthma should not undertake vigorous exercise except under the supervision of a competent physician.
If exercising makes you tired, stop immediately. The purpose of exercise should be to make you feel refreshed and relaxed and not tired. The most important rule about the fitness plan is to start with very light exercise and to increase the effort in gradual and easy stages. The sense of well-being will begin almost immediately. One can start off with a brisk walk for 15 to 20 minutes. A comfortable sense of tiredness should be the aim.
It is valueless and possibly harmful to become exhausted or seriously short of breath. Perhaps, one should aim at activities which need about two-thirds of one’s maximum ability. One way to assess is to count your own pulse rate.
Counting of pulse is quite easy. Feel the pulse on your left wrist with the middle three fingers of your right hand. Press just firmly enough to feel the beat easily. Now count the number of beats in 15 seconds, with the help of a watch with clear second hand and calculate your rate by multiplying by four. At rest heart beats 70 to 80 times a minute. This rate increases during exercise. Really vigorous can produce rates as high as 200 beats per minute or more. Reasonable aim is to exercise at about two-thirds of maximum capacity. It follows that heart rate should be about 130 per minute during and just after exercise. Always avoid over-exertion and never allow your pulse go above 190 per minute minus your age.
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