Meditation Tips – The Nose Knows
Meditation was developed by yogis (yoga adepts) in ancient India more than 7000 years ago. These were the original yogis, seekers of truth, mystics who subjected themselves to intense mental and physical discipline in order to release their inner potential and achieve Self-Realization. As they fine tuned their intuition they became aware of a mysterious energy flowing through the body known as Prana in Sanskrit, meaning ‘vital energy’. Later the the Chinese yogis, or Taoists, called it Chi. This energy fills our body and mind with vitality. Its primary source is our breath.
As we breathe in, the prana in the air enters our nostrils and flows through invisible channels that weave downwards, crossing the spine at several points. Where these energy channels cross they form vortex’s of vital energy, called Chakras. There are seven major Chakras situated along the spinal column, serving as substations of the mind, governing our feelings, desires and potentialities.
The two prana channels beginning at the nostrils have distinct functions. The right nostril channel relates to physically oriented functions of mind and body. If there is a strong airflow through your right nostril, you will be able to digest food far more readily. On the other hand, if there is a stronger flow of air and prana through the left nostril your system will engage more subtle faculties. You will be able to concentrate much better in meditation.
So before meditation check to see which of your nostrils is dominant. Hold your hand beneath your nose to feel which side has a stronger airflow. If your left nostril is dominant fine, go ahead and meditate. If your right nostril has a stronger flow, lie on your right side resting your head on your arm. After a minute or two you will find that the energy has shifted and now you have a stronger airflow through your left nostril. Time to meditate.
One of the specialties of the Tantra Yoga that I teach is the integration of body and mind. Our state of health, what we eat, how we exercise, and how we breathe, all affect our state of mind. And vice versa. Many meditation tips are simply a matter of understanding more about how our body and mind interact.
Enjoy your meditation!