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Prana is the life force that surrounds us. And Pranayama is the art if bringing that life force into ourselves with each breath.

 

The first step, even before we reach those techniques, is actually to learn how to breath. Breathing appropriately will have great impact on one's lifestyle, even if nothing else changes. Breath Therapy can be used for this purpose.

Then, there are many Pranayama techniques that can be applied for a lot of different purposes - although they seem simple, they will have profound impact on all levels:

  • On a physical level, Pranayama improves lung capacity. On an energetic level, it adds a tremendous amount of vitality.
  • On an emotional level, it reduces stress and brings us to a calm and joyful state by activating the parasympathetic system which is responsible for relaxation.
  • At a mental level, it helps increase focus and mental capabilities because it increases oxygen to the brain. In time, it will allow for greater control of the mind and increase your state of awareness.
  • Which leads us to the spiritual level. The stillness of the mind that is created will make space for the Consciousness to grow, and bring with it realisations about our inner Self.

 

In the Yoga Sutras, Patanjali says that the main cause of suffering is Avidya - ignorance of the fountain of joy that is within us. Pranayama is one of the methods that he recommends to purify us at all levels so that our true Self can shine forth.