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12976Re: [Meditation Society of America] Re: About Drugs and Meditation

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  • sandeep
    Jun 19 10:02 PM
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Sunday, June 20, 2004 4:05 AM
      Subject: Re: [Meditation Society of America] Re: About Drugs and Meditation

      Dear Sandeep,
      Thank you for your reply.
      The purpose of the medication was after a complete and total hysterectomy in l988, I began having really bad panick attacks, and the DX with PTSD,
      As a nurse I know I should have only been on it short term, and then weaned off, but none of the military doc's wanted to handle that, and now I still cannot convince somenone to try.Most believe in the profession it is the equivalent of coming off Heroin.
      I have got it sometimes to almost 0, but after a few days, you have a sense of you are gong to lose it. It in itself is a nightmare, and I believe God does not want this toxin in my body anymore.
      How do I research the methods you suggested?
      Hi Anna,
      Pranayam is one of the components of Yoga, which as mentioned earlier,..... involves breathing.
      There are 5-6 different Pranayams, the basic being KapilBhatti and Avlong-Velong.
      I suspected that the medication that you were taking was to address panic attacks and or depression and KB and A-V is very effective for this.
      Unlike the other components of Yoga, Pranayams do not involve esoteric body postures or contortions.
      And you cannot do them "wrong".:-)
      If what you are doing is "incorrect", the effectiveness is that much reduced.
      That's all.
      The key aspect for doing all Pranayams is in the sitting position and for the the spine to be straight.
      They are to be done preferably at dawn, preferably out in the open, and on an empty stomach, sitting in the Lotus Position.
      If out in the open is not an option, sit within the house with open windows or sit on the balcony.
      Basically where you are able to freely access fresh clean air.
      Empty stomach (both empty bowels and empty of any intake)ensures that breathing will deep.
      The time at dawn, or early morning is the best time to do Pranayams.
      Sitting in the Lotus position automatically ensures the straightened spine.
      The Lotus Position is the cross-legged sitting position, where the heel of one leg rests on the thigh of the other and the vice versa.
      Now if Lotus position is difficult, try it for whatever time possible.
      If impossible, just sit in the normal sitting position with your folded legs resting on the ground, in front of you.
      In Lotus Position, your spine is automatically straight, so you don't have to bother trying to remember to keep your spine straight.
      In the other sitting position, there is a possibility to slouch (after some time), so if you find yourself slouching, just make your spine straight again.
      Doing Pranayama with a slouched spine, does not harm you.
      It just does not benefit you as much as is possible.
      So spine straight, sitting posture, eyes closed, ..............the two Pranayams.
      Spine straight, sitting posture (Lotus or cross-legged), eyes closed, the back of your hands resting on your knees,... the index finger touching your thumb to form a closed circle.
      KapilBhatti,......... involves the taking in your breath, through both the nostrils, as deeply as possible, (your chest should fill out, you should feel your ribs expanding) and then blowing out the breath again through both the nostrils as forcefully as you can.
      Throw out the whole of the intake breath.
      While you are throwing out the breath, pull your stomach in, as far back as possible.
      So breath in,....... stomach out.
      Breath out...........stomach in.
      Keep doing this, till a natural rhythm is established.
      After this rhythm is established, increase the rapidity.
      So deep breaths going in and out while simultaneously stomach going out and in(reverse direction to the breath).
      Do it slowly in the beginning but there shoud be No gaps between one "breath-in/stomach out-breathout/stomach in",.............and the next set.
      So spine straight, rapid "sets" of this breathing-stomach movements.
      In the attempt to increase the rapidity, don't make your breaths shallow.
      Deep, chest-filling rib-expanding inhalations and then full "snorty" exhalations.
      Your exhalations must be making noises, just like a snorting horse, (if you have ever stood next to a horse)
      Mucus may come out of the nostrils.
      Ignore it or wipe it away, if bothering you.
      And your stomach must be pulled in, as much as far back as possible.
      (For adept practioners, doing Pranayams over years, the shape of the spine is visible to an observer, when the stomach is pulled in.)
      When the natural rhythm is established, you will find your full upper torso also moving in that rhythm. 
      In the begining, you will find, after maybe just 60 seconds, you are out of breath.
      Stop and relax.
      Breath as you normally do.
      And then get back to KapilBhatti.
      For the first week, if you are able to do 15-20 KapilBhatti(s) per minute, you are dong fine.
      Finally, maybe within 2-3 weeks, you will doing 45-60 KapilBhatti per minute.
      Again, for the first week, if you can do 2-3 mins of Kapil Bhatti(s), you are doing fine.
      Finally you will doing for 10 mins.
      10 mins of KapilBhatti, at the rate of 60 per minute.
      That's all you have to do, around 600 KapilBhattis over a 10 mins duration, per day.
      The key is not to strain, not to bother with the minor pains here and there and as soon as you feel you are panting, to stop and take a break.
      Break does not mean getting up from your Lotus position or sitting position.
      Just stop doing KapilBhatti, for few moments.
      And then get back to it. 
      Once you have finished KapilBhatti for the day, ....................for few moments just remain in the sitting position, eyes closed, .......observe whatever is the experience happening in the moment.
      Don't disparage the experience ("been this, done this"), ..........don't invest in the experience.
      Just observe.
      And after some time (whatever, you feel like) proceed to Avlong-Velong.
      If you feel like, you may like to wipe your face with a cloth, clean the nostrils areas.
      If knees/ legs are aching for having sat for 10 mins, .........remain sitting stretch out your legs, ankles together, rotate both your ankles clockwise, and then anti-clockwise.
      Proceed to come back to cross-legged sitting position and start Avlong-Velong.
      Same sitting position, spine straight, eyes closed.
      Here the right hand will be used, so hands not resting on the knees.
      With the thumb of your right hand, close your right nostril and inhale deeply through your left nostril.
      With the index finger of the right hand, close the left nostril, open thumb and exhale through the right nostril.
      After full exhalation, breathe in through the right nostril(the left  nostril still remains closed with the index finger).
      After full inhalation, again close the right nostril with your right thumb , open your index finger and  exhale through the left nostril.
      In essence, you are breathing in through one nostril and breathing out through the other nostril.
      And then the reverse flow.
      Deep inhalation, deep full exhalations, (like in KapilBhatti, except that here there is no stomach movement and only one nostril used at a time) 
      You will find the breathing is smooth through one nostril, through the other it is not.
      It is not clear a nasal passage, at all.
      This imbalance is the indication of the imbalance in the organism.
      Keep going, irrespective of the blocked nasal passage, force the breath through the blacked nasal.
      And if you are getting breathless,(because of having to force through the blocked passage),............... stop, .........breathe normally through both nostrils.
      And then back to A-V.
      Keep doing, again 15-20 per min, going uptil 60 per min, in 2-3 weeks time.
      Again, 2-3 mins per day of Avlong-Velong, going up to 10 mins in 2-3 weeks time.
      In 2-3 weeks time, you will notice perfect balance in the breathing through either nasal passage.
      The organism is on it's way to balance.
      So spine straight, eyes closed, deep breathing in-out through alternate nostrils.
      After, you have finished A-V for the day, once again, remain in observation, eyes closed.
      Just this, 10 mins of KapilBhatti (continuously) and 10 mins of Avlong-Velong (continuously).
      If you are doing 5 mins of each continuously in 2-3 weeks time, you are doing great.
      A-V can be done, at any time through out the day.
      Waiting for someone at the bus stand, traveling in a train/flight, sensing a pending stressful situation coming up (aka, going in for a meeting with long term impacts on one's life), ..............
      ..............an impending panic attack (after 15 years, you know the tell-tale signs of an attack coming up, isn't it),..
      ..just sit somewhere (If cross legged/Lotus position seems inappropriate for you in a public place, sit on a chair as you normally do, just ensure the spine is straight), and do A-V.
      Early morning when you are doing the A-V, keep your eyes closed.
      If you are doing A-V at any other time or at a public place and you feel uncomfortable (or even anxious, fearful) to close your eyes, do A-V with eyes open.
      Reading a book, reading emails, seeing TV, do A-V.
      Brhami Pranayam Or Ohm Pranayam
      At dawn/early morning,......... suggest finish of KapilBatti and A-V, with Brhami Pranayam.
      Same sitting position, eyes closed, spine straight, block both your ears with each your thumbs.
      Push the thumb in, so that hearing is effectively blocked.(But please do not pierce through your ear drums)
      The index fingers of both hands rest on the forehead, the other 3 fingers lightly rest on the closed eyelids.
      Take a deep breath, feeling it going it down to the hara region (below the belly button)
      And while exhaling,..... chant Ohm
      The sound Ohm is actually 3 syllables.
      The Mmmmm syllable should be as much prolonged as possible, relative to the other two syllable.
      For this, lightly clench your teeth and touch the tongue to your upper palette.
      The sound will automatically become a humming Mmmmmmmmm.
      So no seeing, no hearing, just the internal resonance of the Mmmmmmmmm, going on.
      After exhalation is over, the huming Mmmmmmmm will also be over.
      The Silence.
      Deeply inhale and the next Ohm.
      When you are doing the Ohm(s), you will find after some time, that you have started pressing your closed eye-lids.
      Release the pressue, ..........the finger must lightly rest on the closed eye-lids.
      Do 11, 21 or 101 Ohms.
      And then drop your body on the grass or carpet or the floor.(use a bed-cover/blanket if bare floor)
      Spread your legs and your hands, and completely loosen your entire body, while lying on your back.
      Eyes closed, breath evenly and give up everything.
      Your body, your mind, your panics, your issues, ..............give up "Anna".
      Become like a corpse (Shav)
      That is why this is called Shavasan.
      Remain like this, for whatever time you feel like.
      And then get up and get back to tackling the world.:-)
      This entire process, KapilBhatti+A-V+Ohm+Shavasan, is not more than 35-40 mins.
      Now your medications.
      Continue with whatever dosage you have been taking.
      However I think, rather than routine, its become SOS, isn't it?
      That is, when you notice those subtle signs, you reach for the chemicals.
      While doing the Pranayams, if you notice the need to take the chemical, by all means do so.
      So don't alter anything, just because some email address has shown you how to do Pranayam:-)
      Just notice, over a period of 4 weeks of Pranayams, the increasing gaps in the appearing of those subtle signs indicating an onset of a panic attack.
      And notice the occasion, when sensing the subtle signs, you went into Pranayam, rather than reaching for the chemical.
      Now whether this happens in 4 weeks time, or 4 months time, don't be worried.
      After all, a habit of 15 years is being de-habitated.
      And also don't get disheartened that you have been doing Pranayams for such a long time and here Anna again succumbed to the chemical.
      It WILL happen.
      Have fun and if you want to seek any clarifications, feel free to scream.
      And if you feel like, share your experience, after doing the Pranayams say for 7 days.
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