Alternate Nostril Breathing to Clear Your Astral Channels and Align Your Chakras

"The process of breathing, if fully understood and experienced in its profound significance, could teach us more than all the philosophies of the world" - Lama Govinda

Alternate nostril breathing, also known as nadi shodhan (purifying the channel) or anulom vilom, balances the physical and mental energies.

Right nostril or 'Pingal nadi' signifies the sun principle or body while the left nostril, 'Ida nadi,' signifies the moon principle or mind.

Doing alternate nostril breathing purifies the Pingal and Ida nadis, thus bringing the body and mind into balance.

This technique also facilitates the practice of primordial sound meditation.

How to do nadi shodhan or anulom vilom

  • Use the right thumb to press down and close the right nostril and breathe in deeply from the left nostril.
  • Fill your lungs.
  • Immediately close the left nostril with the little or ring finger and hold for a second.
  • Breathe out from the left nostril emptying your lungs completely.
  • Now inhale from your right nostril, close it with your thumb, hold for a second before exhaling from your left nostril.
  • This completes one cycle.
  • Do it naturally. Do not exert or force yourself in anyway. If you feel tired, stop. Take a few deep breaths then start again.
  • Repeat for 10 minutes.
  • Finally, close your eyes and sit still. Watch you breath. Pay attention to every inhalation and exhalation and to the associated sensations.

Notice how it feels at the tip of your nose, in the area between your upper lip and nose, inside your nose.

If any thoughts arise, ignore them and let them pass. Continue to focus on your breathing and sit for as long as you wish.

After some practice you can try to stagger your breathing in the ratio of 1:2:2. Inhale for 4 seconds, hold for 8 seconds, then exhale for 8 seconds.

If you feel uncomfortable doing this, go back to breathing in one continuous rhythm.

How it helps

The increased amounts of oxygen in the bloodstream due to rhythmic deep breathing clear the energy channels in our subtle or astral body.

This is of vital significance, as the condition of our subtle body directly impacts the condition of our physical body. Impurities in the subtle plane manifest outwardly as disease or imbalance in the physical plane.

These impurities not only affect us physically, but also cloud our consciousness and hamper our mental faculties.

Regular practice of alternate nostril breathing purifies the body and calms the mind. It is highly recommended for stress-relief and quick relaxation.

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