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Gabriel Wright
Gabriel Wright

Pranayama For Self-Healing [UPD]

Apane juhvati pranam pranepanam tathapare; Pranapanagatee ruddhva pranayamaparayanah (Gita, Ch. IV-29.). Others offer Prana (outgoing breath) in Apana (incoming breath) and Apana in Prana, restraining the passage of Prana and Apana, absorbed in Pranayama. Pranayama is a precious Yajna (sacrifice). Some practise the kind of Pranayama called Puraka (filling in). Some practise the kind of Pranayama called Rechaka (emptying). Some are engaged in the practice of Pranayama called Kumbhaka, by impeding the outward passage of air, through the nostrils and the mouth, and by impeding the inward passage of the air, in the opposite direction.

Pranayama for Self-Healing


The eight limbs are comprised of ethical principles for living a meaningful and purposeful life; serving as a prescription for moral and ethical conduct and self-discipline, they direct attention towards one's health while acknowledging the spiritual aspects of one's nature. Any of the eight limbs may be used separately, but within yoga philosophy the physical postures and breathing exercises prepare the mind and body for meditation and spiritual development.[4,10] Based on Patanjali's eight limbs, many different yogic disciplines have been developed. Each has its own technique for preventing and treating disease.[1] In the Western world, the most common aspects of yoga practiced are the physical postures and breathing practices of Hatha yoga and meditation.[4] Hatha yoga enhances the capacity of the physical body through the use of a series of body postures, movements (asanas), and breathing techniques (pranayama). The breathing techniques of Hatha yoga focus on conscious prolongation of inhalation, breath retention, and exhalation. It is through the unification of the physical body, breath, and concentration, while performing the postures and movements that blockages in the energy channels of the body are cleared and the body energy system becomes more balanced. Although numerous styles of Hatha yoga exist, the majority of studies included in this manuscript utilized the Iyengar style of yoga. The Iyengar method of Hatha yoga is based on the teachings of the yoga master B.K.S. Iyengar.[1] Iyengar yoga places an emphasis on standing poses to develop strength, stability, stamina, concentration and body alignment. Props are utilized to facilitate learning and to adjust poses and instruction is given on how to use yoga to ease various ailments and stressors.

While stimulation is good, too much taxes the nervous system and yoga provides relief from excess stimulation and the stressors and hectic nature of modern life.[5] Restorative postures, savasana, pranayama, and meditation encourage pratyahara, a turning inward of the senses which enables downtime for the nervous system, the byproduct often being improved sleep. Pharmacological treatment of insomnia is often associated with hazardous side effects such as states of confusion, psychomotor performance deficits, nocturnal falls, dysphoric mood, impaired intellectual functioning and daytime sleepiness, especially in older adults.[30] Therefore, alternative forms of therapy for improving sleep are becoming utilized more frequently. These alternative therapeutic approaches can be generally classified into three categories: behavioral based educative methods (e.g. avoiding caffeine or other stimulants before bedtime), relaxation techniques (e.g. progressive muscular relaxation, yoga, and meditation) and formal psychotherapy. Because of its ability to increase relaxation and induce a balanced mental state, yoga has been studied to evaluate its possible effects on sleep and insomnia.[16,30]

The basis for all deep breathing practices originates in the science of yoga, specifically the fourth limb of yoga, known as pranayama. The word pranayama is derived from two Sanskrit words. Although there are various definitions of the term, one interpretation is: prana (life force) and ayama (expansion), or expanding the life force using the breath. The ancient yogis learned that by controlling the breath, you can influence every aspect of your life.

Ujjayi pranayama is an important yoga breathing technique that is used in many forms of meditation. Ujjayi pranayama is also called the yoga breath, throat breathing, psychic breath, and prolonged, diaphragmatic breathing.

Dr Swami Shankardev Saraswati and Jayne Stevenson created this free course to enable students to gain access to this most important yogic technique. Ujjayi pranayama is a central technique within many of the courses offered by Big Shakti

According to a 2019 study, pranayama also improves sleep quality in people with obstructive sleep apnea. Additionally, the study found that practicing pranayama decreased snoring and daytime sleepiness, suggesting benefits for better quality rest.

The researchers also mentioned that pranayama helps remove carbon dioxide and raises oxygen concentration, which fuels brain cells. This may contribute to mindfulness by improving focus and concentration.

In a 2014 study, participants with mild hypertension received antihypertensive drugs for 6 weeks. Half the participants also received pranayama training for 6 weeks. By the end of the study, the latter group experienced a greater reduction in blood pressure.

One 2019 study determined that 6 weeks of practicing pranayama for 1 hour a day could have a significant effect on lung function. The practice improved multiple parameters of lung function, according to pulmonary test results.

The teachings of progressive and direct practices of pranayama for purification, healing, and awakening including breath awareness, abdominal-diaphragmatic breathing, ujjayi, anuloma, viloma, shitali, nadi-shodhana and meditation.

Yoga & Ayurveda addresses our entire nature, our greater life as a spiritual and cosmic being. It examines the broader scope of ayurveda, which includes not only physical health but also mental health and preparation for the spiritual life. Similarly, it looks into the entire field of yoga: the science of raja yoga and its eight limbs, from asana to meditation. This book is meant for those who want to explore a deeper level of knowledge than what is usually described in introductory books on the subjects of yoga, ayurveda, meditation, pranayama, and more. It discusses many details about the subtle and causal bodies and their energetics, including much more information not previously in print in English.

This book will give you the knowledge to uncover the secret powers of the body, breath, senses, mind, and chakras. More importantly, it can help you unfold transformational methods to work on them through diet, herbs, asana, pranayama, and meditation. This is the first book published in the West on these two extraordinary subjects and their interface. It has the power to change the lives of those who read and apply it.

The easiest and fastest way to increase the prana in the body is to change our breathing to affect the quality and quantity of air taken into the lungs. Prana is also absorbed in the nose by its connection to the two nadi energy channels that terminate in the nostrils. Pranayama is used to control, cultivate, and change the prana in the body. A change in the prana will affect the whole body. First energetically, then psychologically mentally, and last physically. advanced pranayama is used to cleanse the impurities and obstructions in the nadis, and eventually unblock the sushumna nadi, allowing the Kundalini prana to flow freely through this channel and upwards through our seven chakras.

For most pranayama techniques, the breath is slow and steady, breathed in and out of the nose and down into the belly. Always sit with a straight spine and a relaxed body. While you are practicing Pranayama, let go of any thoughts by focusing on the type of breathing involved with the pranayama.

The first thing to master and pranayama is the exhalation, which should be slow and smooth. Once exhaling is mastered, then the inhalation is worked on smoothing it out, making it long and slow. Retention of the breath should not be attempted until you have attained a smooth, gentle inhale and exhale. Let the eyes be soft or closed during your practice. If comfortable, you can gaze upwards at the third eye, the point between the eyebrows.

If you feel dizzy lightheaded winded or gasping for air, stop the pranayama and take slow, relaxed normal breaths until you have recovered. Do not strain your body while practicing pranayama. When you feel fatigued, stop, and rest. After practicing pranayama, lie down to rest in Shavasana or practice a few minutes of meditation.

The slow-paced pranayama techniques can be further modified by changing the ratios of the four different parts of the breath. Breath retention is considered an advanced technique, and the holding of the breath should not cause strain or discomfort. In general, lengthening the inhalation is energizing, and lengthening the exhale is calming.

Several advanced pranayama techniques involve blocking off one nostril. Breathing through one or the other nostril dramatically changes the mental and emotional energy of the body. Left nostril breathing has been shown by medical studies to slow down the heart rate and decrease blood pressure. Conversely, right nostril breathing has shown to increase the heart rate and blood pressure. The right nostril connects to the Pingala nadi and has a yang, warming, bright, solar, and active energy. The left nostril connects to the Ida nadi and has a yin, cooling, dark, lunar, and calming energy.

There are several books on pranayama that go into much greater detail about the practice. If you are curious about studying and learning more about yogic breathing techniques, we recommend you check out the following books:

You've likely heard the phrase "breath is life" before. And it's true. That's why we practice pranayama or breathwork. Today, our focus is on Kriya pranayama which is part of the ancient Kriya yoga system revived by Mahavatar Babaji around 1861 through Babaji's follower Lahiri Mahasaya. It was then pushed to international attention with the publication of Paramahansa Yogananda's Autobiography of a Yogi.


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