July 19, 2024
233 Bethnal Green Road, London, E2 6AB United Kingdom
Article CHAPTER-3 Series

THE KUNDALINI MEMOIRS OF A YOGI

CHAPTER 3: Continued from previous issue of YOGA Magazine…

Words: Yogi Raj Muni

Yogi Ji came up behind me and whispered in my ear a mantra. I was sitting cross legged. I could feel his knees pressing against my shoulders and the scent of his skin was intoxicating as he whispered gently and softly in my right ear. He moved his left arm to my third eye which is the location also of the Ajna chakra. He pressed hard and then moved his right hand and pressed his thumb hard on my Bindu chakra, behind my head. I could feel his energy moving through me. Images of other entities flashed across my mind as I tried to figure out what it was that I was seeing. Yogi Ji stopped pressing my bindu chakra and rubbed some Gulkand on it and on my lips; still firmly pressing my third eye. He then slammed his body hard on the back of my neck and chanted out aloud a mantra that I did not fully understand. I turned around to face Yogi Ji, and stared deeply into his eyes. He carried on rubbing my third eye point and I felt faint and teary.

He took his right hand and wrapped it around the back of my head covering the bindu chakra and gently massaged the back of my head with his other hand. ‘‘Why do I feel like this Yogi Ji? I feel tearful?’’ Yogi Ji replied that my psychic eye was opening and that I was opening it up. ‘‘Muni once it is open, even a little you will experience many skills and powers including telepathy, ability to communicate with other entities and remote viewing. There is much to learn and know about the third eye and I will teach you as the time progresses.’’.

After that he also sat down opposite me in cross-legged pose and we brought our hands to slowly rest on our knees. We sat in silence for what seemed like several hours, without moving.

During this time, Yogi Ji transmitted thoughts into my head, which I readily accepted. He asked for my permission to do so telepathically and I agreed because my mind and body belonged to him. He was my Guide and so he must know everything and I surrendered to him.

Yogi Ji laughed and bent over backwards into a pose that looked like a plough and remained there for the next 30 minutes while I sat quietly. ‘‘Yogi Ji, you look like a plough!’’ I exclaimed. ‘‘Yes, Muni that’s right. This is a yoga exercise and it called halasana which means plough. You can perform it too. See, just lay down into your back and place the arms next to your body and press the palms down onto the floor. Inhale and lift your legs to a 90-degree angle. Now as you exhale lift your pelvis up and off the ground together with both legs and stretch them back over your head. Hold for a few seconds or as long as you can Muni. Then carefully and slowly bring the legs back down over the head and on to the floor. Come I will watch as you perform it’’. I followed whatever Yogi Ji told me. He carefully checked each stage of the movement I made. I found it difficult to lift my pelvis, off the floor. “It’s only nerves’’ said Yogi Ji gently. ‘‘I will help you until you can perform this without any support.’’ He softly placed his palms on either side of my pelvis and firmly held the back of my spine. My legs were dangling. ‘‘Bring them together Muni!’’ he said. ‘‘You want to learn halasana and you are shaking.” I did as I was told and Yogi Ji helped lift my pelvis off the floor so that I was able to bring my legs over the head. I definitely felt better that I had accomplished the pose. ‘‘Now hold the position Muni for at least a minute.” Yogi Ji continued, “If halasana is practised regularly one’s health will improve significantly. The spine will become flexible and ageing of the body is delayed.

You will also receive a great boost of energy, as this pose massages all internal organs especially in the digestive tract. Your skeletal frame strengthens and you will experience flexibility in the muscles,” said the Yogi. ‘‘Muni this exercise has tremendous value so please practise it regularly. Yoga exercises are based on the natural world; by observation of it. Therefore, the exercise I teach you are laden with benefits Muni.”

Yogi Ji delved deeper into the subject matter of Pranayama. “The connection between the breath and mind is vital and dynamic. A perplexed and disorientated breathing pattern Muni, is merely evidence of an unsettled mind.” I appreciated the wisdom of Yogi Ji’s words as I began noticing that my breath indeed was my constant companion. Up until I met Yogi Ji it was something I barely thought about. Now I had started to understand how the way I breathe, affected everything about me. I had to learn the pranayama exercises to heat my body because without them my physical body could not have survived the plunging, bitter cold mountain temperature.

We started with Nadi Sodhana which Yogi Ji said was relatively easy to understand if I concentrated on what he was teaching me. Sure, enough after learning this pranayama exercise my life was qualitatively improved in many ways. ‘‘Muni, the nostrils are like a natural thermostat. They regulate temperature of the body internally. By closing the nostril or nostrils one can experience different states of breathing and then the impact on the mind and body as well as spirit.”

Yogi Ji taught me that there are a handful of classical styles of yoga and one such practice is Hatha Yoga. In Hatha Yoga we practise moving energy through the body’s subtle energy channels , which Yogi Ji referred to as the nadis. These he told me are not to be confused with the Chakras which are also connected energy. Nadis are pathways, whereas Chakras are energy centres.

There are over 72,000 nadis (energy channels in the body). They carry the flow of energy. The word nadis should not be confused with pathways of the body that are physical, such as the arteries or veins. They are entirely distinct.

There are some major and significant nadis in the body which experienced yogis work with.

One such nadi known as Ida flows through the left nostril. It is cold and is associated with the moon. This nadi is also known as Chandra nadi. The Pingala nadi flows through the right nostril and is hot and is associated with the sun and is also known as Surya nadi.

Hatha Yoga works to regulate these major nadis so that the mind, body and spirit work to optimum standards. Breath exercises can be used to manipulate the prana in the body and thereby also the temperature. Yogi Ji taught that the breath rises into the Ida nadi and then circulates there throughout the whole day and when the day is ending and the sun is setting the breath then moves to the Pingala nadi and does so all through the night. So, there are two principal nadis through which the body’s internal thermostat works.

Yogi Ji taught me how to perform Nadi Sodhana (alternate nose breathing). There are a few ways this exercise can be performed.

One such way is to sit down into a comfortable position; keep the spine straight. Close the right nostril using the thumb and two last fingers of right hand. Inhale trough left nostril and close that with the thumb and two last fingers. Hold the breath. Now exhale only through the right nostril. Now inhale through the right nostril, at the end of inhaling, block the right nostril with the thumb and two last figures. Continue inhaling and exhaling with the alternative nostrils. Repeat this whole process at least 10 times, longer if you have the stamina but prolong it to 30 minutes. This exercise also purifies and cleanses the nadis as well as relaxes the body and mind. It is suitable to dispel anxiety, helplessness and related symptoms. It is also suitable for anyone that wants an energy boost.

Regular practise of Nadi Sodhana strengthens the respiratory system including lungs and the chest. Yogi Ji advised I should try and integrate this pranayama exercise regularly into my practice and especially at the end of any physical yoga one. He also told me that if I ever wanted to heat my body, I should work with the right nostril exhalations and if I wanted to drop the temperate to make it cooler then I should work with the left nostril.

This helped me considerably in hot blistering summertime’s and bitter freezing winters. ‘‘You have the power Muni to change the flow of breath through these nadis consciously whenever you chose to.”

This was a concept that was completely new to me. I found it difficult to lift my pelvis, off the floor. “It’s only nerves’’ said Yogi Ji gently. ‘‘I will help you until you can perform this without any support.’’ He softly placed his palms on either side of my pelvis and firmly held the back of my spine. My legs were dangling. ‘‘Bring them together Muni!’’ he said. ‘‘You want to learn halasana and you are shaking.” I did as I was told and Yogi Ji helped lift my pelvis off the floor so that I was able to bring my legs over the head. I definitely felt better that I had accomplished the pose. ‘‘Now hold the position Muni for at least a minute.” Yogi Ji continued, “If halasana is practised regularly one’s health will improve significantly. The spine will become flexible and ageing of the body is delayed.

You will also receive a great boost of energy, as this pose massages all internal organs especially in the digestive tract. Your skeletal frame strengthens and you will experience flexibility in the muscles,” said the Yogi. ‘‘Muni this exercise has tremendous value so please practise it regularly. Yoga exercises are based on the natural world; by observation of it. Therefore, the exercise I teach you are laden with benefits Muni.”

Another pranayama exercise that Yogi Ji taught me was an ancient exercise from Himalayan Yogis known as Tummo., “Sit down into lotus pose or easy pose or even cross legged, whatever you find easy to do,” said Yogi Ji. ‘‘Inhale deeply into the stomach region, so that you can awaken the inner fire in the belly. This secret exercise I am about to share with you Muni combines the process of breathing and visualisation of fire.” I did as Yogi Ji requested. “Now place your hand over your stomach,” said Yogi Ji as he demonstrated to me how to do this. “Think of a fire burning inside your stomach Muni. Keep attention on the way it burns away and the temperature it creates.” I did as Yogi Ji prescribed and visualised fire inside my stomach. It felt hearty and warm to do so.

Yogi Ji continued, ‘‘Inhale deeply into the spine and while doing so move backwards rocking back. As you do so visualise that the breath that you inhaled is helping to keep the fire in your belly hot and alight. Now exhale slowly with full strength keeping lips in a hollow shape (as if blowing into a tube slowly). Now slowly move back and forward as if you are rocking and imagine the heat inside you growing. Whatever works best for you; hold the breath after 4 or 5 inhalations (inbreaths) and as you do so push the breath downwards into the belly and push up your muscles (the ones you use to pass urine). Hold for few seconds or slightly longer depending on your stamina and release the breath.”

Yogi Ji assumed the pose and began the exercise. I observed and then copied him. I watched interestingly as he slowly warmed up. I could see the colour in his cheeks turn from bluish hues to a warm pinkish red. As the time passed and his breathing continued, I could see sweat appearing on his forehead and his neck and arms. I was surprised as we were seated outside on a mountain ledge at below freezing temperature. I was huddling close to snow leopard burrowing my hands into his furry coat, whereas Yogi Ji was sitting there looking warm as tea.

After 20 minutes or so Yogi Ji turned to me and said ‘‘Muni we will not leave until you master this pranayama exercise, whether it takes you an hour or a day or a month or a year. We will remain here, on this very spot. I have all the time in the world Muni, I can wait hundreds of years!” I soon started concentrating on what he was saying, and practised the exercise a few times, until I too was able to warm my body at will. This pranayama exercise was ideal in winter time.

I chopped away the dried branches of the tree that were naturally coming away from the tree, and saddled the branches onto snow leopard. Me and snow leopard made our way back to the cave a few hours later. Both of us practised the breathing exercise to keep our body warm and that helped considerably.

To be continued in the next issue of Yoga Magazine..

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