A friend asked correct procedure of doing Pranayam.
I am learner. Not expert. So I cannot justify the answer in near future.
However, from my experience, I would like to note two points.
1) Pranayam is serious matter. It is not mere a procedure to improve health or well-being.
2) The way many Pop-Gurus are teaching different Pranic techniques at mass level, I don’t agree with them and won’t suggest such instant employment of body for selfish short term health benefits. In long run, incompatible Pranayama methods (against your body prakriti) can cause death too.
If not death, it can cause severe health and mental issues. I have seen it. Experienced it. 🙂
So if you are thinking to begin with Bhastrika or Kapalbhati, wait. Pause. Read third point and decide. It is not some aerobic exercise that anyone can start at any age at anytime. These prescribed versions of pranayamas demand several regimes and strict life routine. Many of us cannot follow them in present chaotic life.
3) Instead of directly jumping into intricacies and complex procedures of prescribes ways, I prefer simple way to begin.
Here is what I do and suggest to any genuine seeker.
Sit comfortably, preferably on a padded/carpeted floor or yoga-mat, and close your eyes. Some of you may feel a wave of subtle energy rise up along your spine.
Keep the body completely relaxed.
Breathe normally and keep the mind engaged in observing your involuntary breathing.
Think that you are not the body but only the pure air which is the gross manifestation of Prana (Life Energy).
Let your body be relaxed and free to do whatever happens, just observe your involuntary breathing or any physical or mental activities (kriyas).
If you find yourself getting distracted by random thoughts do not try to suppress them, instead, direct your attention back to your involuntary breathing or kriyas if they are occurring.
Try this daily for 3 to 18 minutes or more. Do not open your eyes unless you feel the urge to
Try to follow this for at least 90 days without break. Befriend your eternal friend, mitra Prana. 🙂 Meanwhile, contemplate on word “Prana” or प्राण. Do try to realize how प्राण drives our life.
And then try some complex techniques.
What is Prana?
प्राणो वा अमृतं |
प्राण अमृत है |
Nectar that keeps us alive.
The whole world is embodied in Prana.
Pranayam is not just about controlled breathing. It is about preserving and maintaining Prana. Breathing is mere one way of doing it.
More next time…