Robert W. Coleman Elementary in West Baltimore is just one example of what needs to be implemented more regarding a holistic approach to disciplining students instead of punishing them or sending them to the principal’s office. The school’s administrators are sending children to “the mindful moment room” where they are able to meditateand wind down. With the new policy in place and in the time that the meditation room has been set up, there have actually been no suspensions throughout the entire year. The program is an initiative organized by the Holistic Life Foundation, a Baltimore-based nonprofit organization committed to nurturing the wellness of children and adults in under-served communities.
Andres Gonzalez, one of the organizers of the project, says that children are even bringing home what they are learning to their families. “That’s how you stop the trickle-down effect when Mom or Pops has a hard day and yells at the kids, and then the kids go to school and yell at their friends. We’ve had parents tell us, ‘I came home the other day stressed out, and my daughter said, Hey, Mom, you need to sit down. I need to teach you how to breathe.'” Gonzalez said.
Most people would say that meditation can be a religious or spiritual experience, while others find it to be a helpful relaxation and anger management tool. In this one Baltimore school, the powers of living in the present are coming to fruition since they also incorporate yogaclasses for the children. If more schools adopted this education system instead of what is already old school ideas – pun intended, no doubt the world would see a much faster transformation for the better.
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A couple of years ago I used to visit homeopath to treat a recurring hair loss problem.
She would diagnose the cause by checking my pulse, known as Nadis Pariksha (pulse examination).
Surprisingly, she would point out the right causes, simply by examining the energy flow in the Nadis.
In ancient Indian medicine, Nadis are the channels/pathways or energy centers in the body that carry Prana/life force throughout the body.
They connect at special energy points called Chakras.
The Sanskrit term “Nadi” comes from the root word “Nad”, which means motion, flow or vibration. Just as veins and arteries are important for the healthy functioning of our physical body, Nadis weave through our physical nerves as well as the subtle circuitry (yoga Nadis) of the mind, of the Self, of the consciousness matrix that supports our physical presence from invisible dimensions of existence.
Illustration showing the Nadis and major and minor Chakras
Prana needs to flow freely through the system to be healthy.
When it becomes weak or congested, it leads to poor mental and physical health.
Often, painful life experiences lead to blockages and ultimately health woes; so opening up these channels is important for our overall well-being.
The body is filled with innumerable Nadis that cannot be counted.
Tantric wisdom state that there are 72,000 Nadis in the human body.
Fourteen are principal Nadis out of which Sushumna, Ida and Pingala are considered the three most important.
Nadis are energy channels that carry Prana throughout our body
Ida, associated with the energy of the moon, represents the feminine aspect of our personality and is often shown as white.
Ida is also the Yin element in Chinese philosophy.
Ida controls the function of the parasympathetic nervous system which calms the mind and body because it is related to emotions, feelings, and memories.
When Ida becomes too strong or dominant, tiredness, depression, introversion and an inability to see things with a clear perspective can take over.
The Ida Is Channeled Via The Left Nostril And Pingala Nadi Through The Right Nostril.
Pingala, associated with the energy of the sun, represents the masculine aspect of our personality and is often shown as red.
Pingala controls the sympathetic nervous system and stimulates activities and planning of body and mind. Pingala Nadi is responsible for the logical, rational and analytical intellect.
Pingala is also the Yang element in Chinese philosophy.
When Pingala is overused, due to the hustle and bustle of city life, we can have difficulty sleeping and concentrating. We can become anxious, irritable and impulsive.
Ida and Pingala start/end to the left and the right of the Sushumna respectively, moving in spirals like the DNA helix, crossing at each chakra or energy portal.
Anahata Menon, shamanic healer, and mystic at Anahata Foundation explained, “It is the interaction between these two distinct yet complementary energy channels that controls our mental processes, intuition and the activity that takes place between the left and right hemisphere of our brain. The sacred union between the male (solar or day) and female (lunar or night) aspects of our spiritual nature forms the basis of most evolutionary esoteric paths.”
Sushumna is the central channel of energy in the human body.
Sushumna runs from the base of the spine to the crown of the head and carries Kundalini energy(the primal evolutionary force within) upwards as it is awakened through the practice of yoga and meditation.
Sushumna Nadi only opens and flows freely when Ida and Pingala Nadis are balanced and clear.
Thus the purification of all three Nadis is important for the overall health, wellness of the body and mind, and the experience of spiritual growth.
Anahata said, “However, as a spiritualist, even though I personally enjoy all the technicalities of ancient wisdom and esoteric arts, I don’t obsess over them. If our spiritual urge or intent is aligned to infinite expansion of awareness, potentials, and consciousness, to love, to higher principles of freedom, and balance for the highest good of all, then any sincere spiritual practice, be it yoga or plant spirit medicine, drum medicine or Reiki, should support this process effectively. As humanity makes a big shift of consciousness from the Collective Mind to the Collective Heart, I believe that the subtle technologies of our physical and etheric bodies will unlock (reveal themselves to us) and spontaneously restore or repair themselves to a state of optimum balance and health.”
In traditional Chinese medicine, Meridian is a path through which the life-energy or Qi flows
To determine the flow of current at any time, note the flow of breath in the nostrils.
If the left nostril has a greater flow of air, then Ida Nadi is predominant.
When the flow is greater in the right nostril, then Pingala is predominant.
If the flow is equal, Sushumna is ruling.
Hatha Yoga is a yoga technique that focuses on bringing this balance. Meditation, Pranayam, breath work and sound (Nada or Swara yoga) healing are different paths that one can explore to achieve this balance as well.
Surya Namaskara is a common sequence of Hatha yoga asanas
The ancient Tibetan practice of dream yoga is designed to give you access to dream consciousness in waking reality, which has the effect of powerfully expanding your spiritual awareness. Many people say their lives are so busy that they don’t have time for meditation. Yet every living being must sleep. During sleep time, we don’t schedule meetings or have appointments to keep. The time is ours and is usually subject to the mindless, random chaos of our undisciplined minds. We spend nearly one-third of our life sleeping and dreaming. That means that if we live to be ninety, we would have spent thirty years of our life asleep.
Can you imagine what it would mean if you were able to understand what is going on during those lost years of your life and to tap that mental power and creativity as a source of spiritual awakening?
In many of the great wisdom traditions of the world, there are traditions of “dream yoga” meditations that cultivate a sense of lucid wakefulness within the dream state. The profound practices of Tibetan dream yoga blend the lucid clarity of mindful presence with the boundless creativity of the mind to create unlimited abundance in your life. And they combine elements of creative, reflective, and receptive meditation practices.
Before you go to sleep, hold the clear intention to wake up and be conscious within your dreams. In some Native American traditions, dreamers are advised to remember to look at their hands within a dream or to raise their hands to the sky in a prayer for rain to bless the earth. Holding this simple intent is a good place to begin a dream yoga practice.
During mindless daily life, we seldom look deeply enough into our perceptions, conceptions, and projections to recognize that our selective attention, biases, preconceptions, and assumptions are actually weaving together to construct our experience. Properly understood as expounded in the philosophy of Tibetan dream yoga, our ordinary life is seen to be a waking dream subject to many of the same conditions of our sleeping dreams.
Learning to wake up within our dreams, and see and understand deeply and clearly what is going on, can be a profound path of awakening.
As Thoreau said, “Our truest life is when we are in our dreams awake”.
Ask yourself, “How do I know what reality is”?
ARE YOU CURIOUS TO KNOW HOW DREAM YOGA IS DIFFERENT FROM LUCID DREAMING?