Despite the astronomical advancements in technology made daily, our society is seemingly devolving as many people continue to lose touch with the essence of what makes us organic life forms. We are more in tune with material objects than our own minds, bodies, and the connection to one another as a species. As we continue down this inefficient path, the need for balance becomes more and more apparent; however, hope is not lost. In fact, a paradigm shift could be a simple breath exercise away.
Kundalini Yoga is one of the most powerful practices to control breathing and transmute energy in order to achieve higher states of consciousness. The founder, Yogi Bhajan, describes it as a tool that can “awaken the full potential of human awareness in each individual; that is, recognize our awareness, refine that awareness, and expand that awareness to our unlimited self. Clear any inner duality, create the power to deeply listen, cultivate inner stillness, and prosper and deliver excellence in all that we do.”
The Breath of Fire (Agni Pran) technique is a key component in the practice. It is done by pumping the navel (belly) outward on the rapid draw of breath in the nose followed by equal exhale and inward navel pump. It has many amazing benefits, the best results being when one is seated, relaxed with the neck and spine lengthened and hands resting on the legs, finally, the chin should be tucked slightly downward to align head and spine and mouth closed with a relaxed face. Below is a list of but a few of the benefits this breath exercise has been found to offer:
1. Purify the Blood
Once you have developed a steady rhythm in your breath, you will begin feeling a flow of prana (life-force) charging through your nervous system, working to remove impurities. Reports from the Kundalini Research Institute have shown that after only three minutes of breath of fire, toxins and deposits are released from the lungs, mucous linings, blood vessels and other cells. Five to fifteen minutes daily will offer a jump start in blood-flow with the longest suggested interval being thirty one minutes to really work the pituitary gland, thus improving regulation of the glandular system. By improving the nervous system, one can change their health and enjoy a freshly tuned operating system.
2) Lifestyle of Positive Intention
With so much of a charge to the nervous system during extended breathe of fire practice, the strengthening of the auric field is noticed. It may be a subtle feeling, but the basic right to exist and be happy without putting up a shield to others is a great effect. The energy that is coiling throughout your body is bringing your consciousness to the highest plane and with that comes a natural desire to love all and serve all.
3) Remove Distraction
An everyday breath of fire practice helps a person keep a promise and avoid distractions by operating on a higher level of consciousness to live and create well. When we are balanced and focused, life is easier and fuller. The increase in your being’s vibration will set you above worldly troubles that often drain us and make us feel inefficient or out of place.
4) Produce Global Alpha Rhythm
If the name wasn’t cool enough already, alpha rhythms are slow brain waves that produce a state in which the mind is alert yet daydreamy. Everyone is familiar with that light, calm feeling after waking up from a great nap and collecting yourself for a few minutes. In this state, the brain is operating between eight and twelve hertz. You can achieve this soothing and meditative state whenever you desire with breath of fire.
5) Improve Digestion
The rapid pumping of the navel acts as a masseuse for your internal organs and helps to literally get your digestive juices going. It’s not uncommon to feel a little heavy and even lethargic after eating a meal, but this practice combat this feeling and help maintain a natural level of energy and harmony.
No matter who you are, breath of fire can become your beacon of light and hope in mastering your energy. The strength in spirit gained from the daily practice has effected the lives of millions as it heightens our culture’s care and consideration for one another, an avenue of life that can certainly use some advancement.