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Every created being has to breathe. So long there is this breath; there is power, wife, son, daughter. Money, friend etc. once these breathe stops, the person is given a name “BODY”. When we are working, sleeping, walking or talking breathing goes on. Out dear friend is breathing indeed!

By knowing the importance and extraordinary power of this breathing one can advice many good results and powers. The inhale and exhale process in called Pranayama. There are some rules to be observed for practicing Pranayama.

1. The room, where this is practiced, should have proper ventilation.

2. Preferably morning time is good.

3. The stomach should be empty. Doing Pranayama after food is to be avoided.

4. Satwic diet is required . Vegetables like lady’s finger, Bitter gourd, Cabbage, Cucumber, Radish, Snake gourd etc. are some that can be treated as Satwic vegetables.

5. Immediately after pranayama taking bath also has to be avoided. Take rest for about ten minutes and then do normal work.

6. If there is perspiration body should not be rubbed by towel. It is enough if you gently rub with the palm.

7. Chill weather wind may affect the lungs.

8. If the pranayama is practiced in the open terrace the air may contain dust particles.

9. By observing Brahmacharya, spiritual advancement may be got.

10. Inhaling or exhaling have to be done gently without noise from nose.

11. When you feel tired, better avoid Pranayama.

12. Avoid talking to others during Pranayama.
The mind has to be calm, free from anger and passion.

13. There should be regularity in inhaling and exhaling.

14. If too much time is taken for exhaling there will be an immediate inhaling.

15. To close the nostrils by the fingers, there is particular form. Bend the index finger and the middle finger. Use the thumb and ring finger. The little finger is also not used. Hence the right nostril is closed by thumb and the left nostril by the ring finger. This is the way as laid down by great men inhaling is known by the name Puraka, exhaling as Rechaka and retaining the breathe as kumbaka.
There are some delicate varieties under this, which have to be practiced only in the presence of a Guru or an expert. It is not advisable to practice them after reading the book. Hence I have omitted such practices and listed out only some common methods.

Procedure 1

Pranayama is performed only with the help of the two nostrils and mouth. Inhaling through one nostril, through the other, alternatively, retaining etc. are some of the methods. The procedures described is enough for a common man. There is vast difference between a Yogi and a common man.

Spread a blanket and sit on it facing east or north direction. It is better to close the eyes. By Pranayama the mind gets concentration. This concentration may be disturbed if the eyes are opened. Mentally “OM” or your Ishta Mantra during the exercise.

Closing the right nostril by the thumb inhale through the left nostril slowly without noise and exhale also through the same nostril. Do like this at least ten times. Then after rest for few minutes repeat the process, through the other nostril slowly without noise and exhale also through the same nostril. Do like this atleast ten times. Then after rest for few minutes repeat the process, through the other nostril. This process also has to be done at least ten times.

Procedure 2

Sit on Padhmasana facing east or north direction. Close the right nostril with the thumb. Inhale through the left. Close the left nostril by the ring finger and exhale through right nostril. Do this for at least ten times. Then practice the same alternate method. There is no retention of breath in this process.

Procedure 3

In the Cauvery River even during the season when water was flowing much I have noticed workers taking sand from the river. They dived into the river and retaining their breath they will fill the basket with sand and come up. A worker used to fill even one cart load duration. But for ordinary persons so much of strain is not necessary. The retention has to be under taken by very slow method. Yoga is to retain the breath for long time. That is quite different issue. Retaining the breath forcibly will bring unnecessary complications. Haste and rough method may be avoided.

Now about the procedure, sit on the blanket in Padhmasana. Closing the left nostril by the ring finger inhale through the right nostril and retain the breath. Then exhale through the left nostril. Do the same process by the other nostril. Each practice may be done at least ten times.

About retaining the breath inside a workable formula may be taken. In the earlier chapter the seven stages of Kundalini Sakthi was explained. Mentally think of these stages, in their order, repeating “OM” in the mind as Om Bhuh; Om Bhuvah; Om suvah; Om Mahaha; Om Janah; Om Tapah; Om Sathyam. (This means om is ruling the seven worlds, seven stages etc.) By theis method two benefits are derived. One is the spiritual advancement. The other is a uniform method, a time factor, in retaining the breath.

Procedure 4

In the iron blacksmith workshop many would have noticed a bellow for blowing the air to the furnace. In the same way this is practiced. Sit in Padhmasana; Inhale and exhale in quick succession. This is called Bastrika pranayama. This also can be practiced ten times.

The benefits of Pranayama are many. The chest region is cleared from phlegm. (In the earlier chapter the seven stages of Kundalini Sakthi was explained. This chest region is the heart of position. Rudra is the presiding daity. This is a form of Lord Siva, the giver of life). Diseases as sinus are cured. There will be a shining in the face. (When I was writing the manuscript for this portion in the T.V. Programe Meenakshi Kalyanam discourse was going on. In that discourse it was said about Lord Siva as “Charu Padhmasanastham”. A wonderful coincidence on the importance of Padhmasana).

God has given us two nostrils and one mouth for two different function. The nose for inhaling and exhaling and the mouth for taking food. Hence while talking or sleeping breathing has to be only through nose. Breathing through mouth is a bad habit. When the just born baby is sleeping in the cradle when it is breathing through the mouth this wrong method is to be corrected.

Sometimes when we are running, more quantity of air is required. Hence by nature we use mouth for inhaling and exhaling. This is an extraordinary situation.