Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Practice to raise your energy level and your capacity for love and joy

Today I want to share with you a wonderful FREE Seasonal Qigong Series by Robert Peng. 

I've been practicing the seasonal meditations now for 6 month and I absolutely love it. 
Robert has a wonderful detailed explanation on his website and he also provides the free videos of his practice.



He offers it for free because according to him "My Qigong Master, Xiao Yao, felt that Seasonal Qigong was an extremely valuable practice, and throughout the years I spent with him, we practiced regularly. So you may be wondering, "Why give away something that is so precious for free?" The answer is simple. Since Seasonal Qigong is time sensitive, it is practiced by many people at the same time. And a basic rule of Qigong is that the greater the number of people aligning their energies simultaneously, the more robust the Qi field becomes."

This month, he is talking about "Major Heat Empowerment".




He says "
The time of the seasonal cycle that coincides with Major Heat represents the hottest time of the year. Over the next fifteen days, streets will become ovens, and if you live in New York City, subway stations will become saunas. Intense heat is the quality that characterizes this seasonal cycle, and to grasp the meaning of Major Heat we turn our attention to the source of all this heat, the sun."


Please follow this link to read more about it and view the Qigong Practice for this Empowerment (I think it may ask you to sign up to view it).
http://www.robertpeng.com/jieqi/jieqi.php?id=12

Please read more about the whole series a http://www.robertpeng.com/jieqi/ -->

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

"King of fruits" works better than cholesterol drugs

Well, summer is on its peak, and we all knows that this is time to relish the great taste of Mangoes. The “king of fruits” has been around for at least 6,000 years.

Ayurveda mentions many benefits of Mangoes in ancient texts.
It is sweet in taste, acts as aphrodisiac, gives stamina to body, good for your heart, good in Vata dosha diseases, makes skin glowing and lustrous, improve digestive fire, coolant, and increase the quantity of semen.
Research recently presented at a meeting of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB), for instance, revealed that eating mangoes every day can help moderate and even lower blood sugar levels, despite their natural sugar content. This is good news for people with type 2 diabetes who may benefit from consuming mangoes regularly as part of a low-sugar diet.

Similar research out of Australia found back in 2006 that eating mango can also help decrease inflammation and resulting high cholesterol, as well as block the formation of various health conditions included under the banner of metabolic syndrome. In essence, mangoes actually work better than cholesterol drugs at naturally balancing and optimizing cellular function throughout the body.



Ever since the Vedic period, mangoes have been highly appreciated in ayurvedic healing and cooking. Mango trees belong to the same family as cashews and pistachios, and can grow to the height of 50 feet in India. All parts of the tree are used for different purposes. The bark, leaf, flowers, fruit and seed offer a variety of medicinal purposes
Mangoes are rich in antioxidants such as beta-carotene, and Vitamin C, Antioxidants have been shown to play an important  role in the prevention of cancer and heart disease. They also contain bioflavonoids, the compounds that help plants capture energy from the sun, and when eaten they aid our immune system. Mangoes also supply potassium and fibre and are low in calories. The insoluble fibre, abundant in mangoes, aids the elimination of waste from the colon and prevents constipation.
Mangoes in Ayurveda
Mango is extensively used in Ayurvedic cures. Mangoes have the properties of ‘heating’. Mangoes are good for excess wind (vata) and musuc (kapha). A ripe mango helps the body to generate blood. If a glass of lukewarm milk is taken after eating a ripe mango then it energizes the entire system, especially the intestines. Mango increases the seven dhatus. It cleanses the body by eliminating toxins. It cures constipation. The emergence of boils on the body after eating mangoes indicates the cleansing action of mangoes. It is a good cure for loss of weight. This fruit checks premature aging.
Mangoes support all the seven dhatus (body tissues) and provide a very satisfying snack or dessert. An ayurvedic mango lassi provides a great refreshing drink for any summer meal.
Mango lassi


  • 1 ripe mango
  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • 1 1/2 cup water

Peel the mango and cut the flesh into a blender. Add enough water to cover the mango and puree until smooth. Add yogurt and the rest of the water and blend until smooth.
-->

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Rapid Relaxation Tips

Today I want to share two easy and rapid relaxation tips that work great.




If you're given to tightening up during the day because of stress, lack of sleep, a jerk for a boss, or any of the zillion other reasons most of us rarely relax, then try putting these tips to work.

I learned them, by the way, from a retired college psychology professor. Whoa!

Here's the first tip:

Controlled Breathing


The first rapid relaxation routine involves breathing in and out (9) nine times in three series of three breaths.

In the first series of three breaths, inhale  deeply and, as you exhale slowly, 
say quietly or think to yourself, "Calm body." Repeat three times.

In the second series of three breaths, inhale deeply and, as you exhale, 
say quietly or think to yourself, "Calm mind."

In the final series of three breaths, inhale deeply and, as you exhale, say (and do)
"Smile."

And here's the second one:

Five-Finger Exercise

For this rapid relaxation technique, close  your eyes, take several deep breaths, and
relax.

Now touch your thumb to your index finger.

As you do so, think of a time when you felt an exhilarated, healthy physical or 
mental fatigue, like after jogging or skiing or successfully completing an important project.


   Next, touch your thumb to your middle finger.

   As you touch your thumb to your middle finger, think of a time when you had a loving
   experience.

Now, touch your thumb to your ring finger; as you do so, think about one of your successes in life or a time when you valued praise that you valued.


   Finally, touch your thumb to your little finger. As you do, go back to the most
   beautiful and relaxing place that you have ever been.


Allow yourself to stay in that  place for awhile.

For more relaxations, please continue 

-->

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Breathing exercise to overcome all of your physical shortcomings

Ready to become Vital beyond Vital?  





Then, practice Surya Bhedan for 5 minutes each day for amazing results.

Breathing solely through one nostril can change your energy and mood. 


Find a comfortable sitting position with the head, neck and back erect.

Place a piece of cotton (or hold it closed) in your left nostril and start

Surya Bhedan is a form of Right nostril breathing that must be added to your daily regimen if you are to overcome all of your physical shortcomings

Surya means sun, Bheda means breaking through something.

In Ancient Eastern Ayurveda Medicine it is taught that breath entering into the Right nostril is Pingala Nadi, which represents physical energy, and when one breathes "exclusively" through the Right nostril it is called Surya Bhedan.

This is an amazing way to increase the Pranic energy flow in your body 10 fold. 




It revitalizes the body, increases vitality, heals depression, eliminates anxiety and other mental illnesses. It can produce stunning results.

Surya Bheda Pranayama is a very good exercise for Vata problems and cures problems with gas in the abdominal region.


It stimulates the brain and Kundalini energy as it activates the sun energy which increases the heat in the body.


It is helpful for women who are suffering from a lack of sexual desire or have problems to achieve an orgasm.

If you often have cold feet and hands do this exercise and get warm again!

Of course, if you have some knowledge about the chakras, this energy is also the energy of the third Chakra, the fire and the heat.


It strengthens the liver, which then begins to secrete bile in ample quantity.


When to Avoid Surya Bheda Pranayama

  • People who have high Pitta or acidity should avoid this posture 
  • Do not labor or force yourself during this pranayama. Sit comfortably
  • It should not be performed if you are suffering from any kind of fever as it increases the heat your body. 
  • If you currently have diarrhea, please also avoid this pose.
  • One should not perform this pranayama for more than 20 minutes or immediately after food.
-->

Monday, July 22, 2013

Can’t Poo? Here’s What To Do…

I wanted to share this article, because sometimes we all need a little help. In the second part of this post, I am including few other suggestions, please scroll to the end for more information.

Social Anxiety Constipation: Can’t Poo? Here’s What To Do…
By Holly at Chinese Reflexology

If you suffer from Social Anxiety Constipation, here’s what can help you poo if you're feeling constipated. In other words, here’s how to lighten up (aka release your bowels) when you're sitting on the can.  
Social Anxiety Constipation (BTW, it’s not a real medical term, I made it up) is a temporary condition which occurs when you need to poo, but can’t due to one of the following reasons:
  • Someone might hear you
  • You’re in a rush and you have a limited amount of time to poo
  • The toilet situation is not ideal
  • All of the above
Lest you think this article is purely in jest, let me reassure you that you will learn some Chinese Reflexology points and strategies to help you have a bowel movement when you’re experiencing conditions that are making it hard to poo.
But in light (pun intended) of being more lighthearted, I wanted to share some of the common scenarios where Social Anxiety Constipation might strike.  Of course, we’ll all deny this happens to us, but we can certainly imagine the following to cause a pause in pooing.
6 Scenarios Where Social Anxiety Constipation Might Strike
  1. You’re using the restroom at work and there’s someone in the stall beside you. It’s really quiet. If you try to poo, you may involuntarily grunt or horror of horrors, fart.  Your co-worker will hear you.
  2. You’re on an airplane and there’s a huge line of people waiting for you to finish using the toilet.  The pressure is on to finish fast.  Plus, the turbulence just kicked up a notch and the seat belt light blinked on.
  3. You’re about to embark on a 3-hour car trip where the only restroom you’ll see is at a gas station.  You have to poo now or forever hold your poo.
  4. You’re about to embark on an epic bike ride/marathon/[insert your favourite sport here].  If you can’t poo now, it will affect your performance.
  5. You have to poo before your yoga class, but you can’t seem to go and class is about to start.  Beware the Downward Dog.
  6. It was a fun idea to go to the beach, but now that you have to poo, the porta-potty is not so fun.  As your nose is assaulted by the combined stench of pee and chemical disinfectant, your eyes are overwhelmed by the mountain of soggy toilet paper (and personal sanitary products) heaped in the loo.  Poo here?  Ich don’t think so.
So, what are you to do when you find yourself in one of the above situations and Social Anxiety Constipation strikes?
First, An Important Message/Disclaimer
The information in this article is for educational (and entertainment) purposes and is not intended to diagnose or treat any diseases.  The educational information only applies for situations where one is experiencing TEMPORARY constipation due to awkward social situations or timing.  If you have chronic constipation, have been constipated for 3 days or more, or you see blood in your stool, GO SEE YOUR DOCTOR! For more details on when to see a doctor when you’re constipated, here’s an article on the Mayo Clinic website.
Chinese Reflexology Points to Help Things Flow to Help You Go
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, all diseases can be traced to a disharmony in the flow of Qi (life force energy) in your body.  If the energy is flowing as it should, then the physical body follows.  However, if Qi becomes blocked or stagnant, over time this can lead to manifestations in the physical body.  On the flip side, if the physical body is “blocked”, Qi becomes stuck too.  The two interplay with each other like Yin and Yang.  If you move one, the other moves too.
In the case of Social Anxiety Constipation, self-consciousness or anxiety causes tightness and constriction in the body.  This stops the flow of Qi and the flow of poo.  Get the Qi moving again in combination with some relaxation, and you’re going to get the poo moving.
You wouldn't be sitting on the toilet unless you felt the urge to have a bowel movement.  Thus, it’s likely that you really do need to poo, but something has stopped the flow.  You’re about to learn how to get it flowing again.
Usually I teach Chinese Reflexology points on the feet.  However, in the case of pooing, it’s simply not practical to reach down and rub your feet (and it’s a little gross to do that on the toilet).  Hence, I’ll show you some reflexology points on your hands.  In fact, all of the Chinese Reflexology points on your feet can be mapped to your hands.  While the foot points are the power centers, the points on your hands can also be very effective.
Chinese Hand Reflexology Points for Large Intestine
Since we’re talking about poo here, the focus will be on the lower half of your large intestine.  To help the Qi flow through your large intestine, you can massage the transverse, descending and sigmoid colon points on your left hand. These are different segments of your large intestine.
LeftHandPalmThe transverse colon reflexology point is a horizontal line located around the halfway point dividing your palm in half.  The descending colon reflexology point is a vertical line located along the edge of your palm below your baby finger. It begins at the end of the transverse colon point and descends downwards to about one thumb-width above your wrist crease.
Finally, the sigmoid colon reflexology point is a horizontal line going from the descending colon point to the thenar eminence of your thumb.  That’s the big fleshy pad of your thumb that makes up part of your palm.
To massage these points, make a fist with your right hand and use the knuckles Start with the transverse colon and stroke horizontally across your palm from left to right.  When you finish the stroke, pick up your knuckles, place them back at the left of your palm, and repeat. Do about 10 to 15 strokes.  It’s important to ALWAYS go from left to right (from the index finger towards the pinky) as this follows the flow of food waste through your intestines.
Next, use a knuckle (I like to use the right middle finger knuckle) to stroke the descending colon point in a downwards direction only.  Start at where the transverse colon ends and stroke down towards where the sigmoid colon begins.  When you finish the stroke, pick up your knuckle, place it back at the top of the descending colon point, and repeat.  Do this for 10 to 15 strokes.
Finally, you will use your four knuckles to stroke the sigmoid colon point.  For this point, stroke horizontally from RIGHT to LEFT.  You’ll stroke from the outside edge of your palm (like where you would do a karate chop) to the inside of your palm (where your thumb is).  In medical lingo, you’ll be going in the direction from the ulna bone to the radius bone.
One easy way to visualize the correct direction is to look at your left palm and envision the strokes going in a clockwise direction.
Chinese Hand Reflexology Points for Anus (Tee Hee)
Seriously (or unseriously), it’s hard not to laugh when saying or writing the word, “anus”.  I had a French teacher once whose last name was “Annis”.  She was mercilessly ridiculed by a group of immature teenagers, but I digress here…
The Chinese Reflexology point for the anus (tee hee again) can be found on your left palm at the end of the sigmoid colon point.  It’s a small circle that is located just below the center of your thenar eminance. If you imagine a point right in the center of the big fleshy pad of your thumb (see the “x” on the diagram), the anus reflexology point would be located just below it.
To massage this point, use the knuckle of your right index finger.  Press into the point and twist back and forth as if you were drilling into the point with your knuckle. Do this for about 10 to 15 seconds.
Relax and Breathe
Prior to trying the reflexology, you’ve probably be straining to poo and/or holding a lot of tension in your abdominal region.  Now is the time, to take a breath and relax all of the muscles in your abdomen.  Try to release all tension and keep breathing easily, yet deeply.
Now, repeat the reflexology.  Then try to poo.
Repeat all of the above as necessary.  You’ll be surprised at how much easier and quicker the poo comes out.
Happy Pooing!
Number One Cure for Constipation;
Magnesium
By far, the number one reason folks suffer from stubborn bowels is Magnesium deficiency. Magnesium is a common mineral responsible for the relaxation of muscles. Years ago, when our food was grown in mineral-rich soil, and our cattle ate mineral-rich grass, we had plenty of magnesium in our diets. However, today we're sadly missing this vital mineral for our bowels AND our hearts; a magnesium dependent organ. 
The simplest way to fulfill this deficiency is by supplementing it with Magnesium Citrate 250 milligrams capsules. Here's the trick to remember; the healing effect of magnesium is “dosage specific” and not everyone is the same. You need to take your dosage to what's called “Bowel Tolerance”. When you take TOO MUCH magnesium, you'll get too loose of a bowel. But you can't know what TOO MUCH is for your body until you take it to this point and then back off a little.
So start out with about 500 milligrams (mgs) of Magnesium Citrate in capsule or powder form. (Powder is cheaper but doesn't taste so hot). Take this in the evening with your evening meal or before bed with water. If you have a nice, smooth (no hard lumps) bowel movement, then just stay at 500 mgs a day. If not, then increase it the next day to 750 mgs. Then again to 1000 mgs if needed. Some need this amount, others will find the 500 mgs is too much and need to back off to 250 mgs. No problem, do what works for you and do it daily.
Please don't underestimate the power of this simple mineral. It works miracles and its not an expensive supplement. You can find Magnesium Citrate at your local health store or grocer.

AYURVEDIC REMEDIES

This is one area that shines in natural herbal remedies. There are a great number of them to try here. Find the one that best suits your personal needs.

  • Drink a glass of warm milk before going to sleep. If your condition is severe add two teaspoons of castor oil.
  • Drink lemon juice with water two or three times a day.
  • Drink half a teaspoon of honey in half a glass of warm water.
  • Drink one liter of warm water and walk around first thing in the morning.
  • One of the most well known herbal remedies in Ayurvedic medicine is Triphala tea. Mix one half teaspoon in a cup of warm water and drink this one a half hour before bedtime. This is a good laxative that is gentle and does not cause cramping..
  • Please note that it is not recommended to eat any foods after ingesting any of the above teas.
-->

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Best Yoga and Ayurveda Routine in Hot Weather


When Summer is here and the heat is intense, for many of us the thought of crawling into the freezer sounds like a great idea.  For Bikram yogis, it may not be a concern, but what about those of us who aren't used to practicing in intense heat and humidity?  When hot weather has you worn out, the thought of yoga practice can be a bit uninspiring.  Working up more of a sweat with Breath of Fire, or intense asanas is the last thing we want to do in hot weather.  But maintaining a consistent yoga practice is important for our health and well being, so what's a yogi to do?  Plenty!



From pranayama to calming postures, doing yoga in the summer is possible.  Try some of these yogic suggestions for keeping your cool in intense heat, and keep your practice alive all summer long.
Pranayama



Sitali Pranayama/Sitalee Praanayam is the pranayama practice for summer.  It is said that this pranayam can reduce fevers, and that it cools the 4th, 5th, and 6th vertebrae of the spine.  Yogi Bhajan taught that it affects the kidneys, the adrenals, and the digestive system.
To practice Sitalee pranayam, curl the tongue and extend the tip of the tongue past the lips.  Imagine that you are making a straw out of your tongue, and inhale through the curled tongue.  Exhale through the nose.  Several minutes of Sitalee pranayam can go a long way to making you feel cooler and more relaxed.

Posture Description:

Maintain a straight spine, sitting in Easy Pose or a chair.

Keep your head level, not tipped up or down.

Open the mouth and form an “O” shape with the lips. It may help to slightly pucker the lips.

Extend the tip of the tongue past the lips, and curl the tongue lengthwise into a straw shape.

Inhale slowly and deeply through the rolled tongue, filling the lungs completely (as in Long Deep Breathing).

Exhale slowly and fully through the nostrils.

Eyes:  Closed. If practicing Sitalee Praanayam as part of Kundalini Yoga, the eyes should be closed and rolled up towards the third eye point between the eyebrows.
End: Exhale through the nostrils, and then resume normal breathing through the nose.
Benefits:
Sitalee Pranayama is cooling, and benefits the kidneys and adrenals.

Both Yogi Bhajan and B.K.S. Iyengar taught that Sitalee Pranayama can be used to reduce fevers and to aid digestion, and cleanse the spleen and liver.   

Teacher's Notes and More Information:
The tongue can be pulled back into the mouth and the lips closed after each inhalation. 
Do the breath slowly and calmly, so that the passage of air through the tongue and nostrils makes no noise. Yogi Bhajan said that there should be no whistling sound, and the breath is so calm and slow that dogs are unable to smell it. 

Initially there may be a bitter taste on the tongue, but in time the bitterness will diminish and shift to a sweet taste. When the taste becomes sweet, Yoga Bhajan said that all internal sickness has been overcome.

As with any breathing practice, if you become dizzy or lightheaded stop the pranayama and resume natural breathing.





Asana
Powerful inversions like handstands use a lot of muscular energy, and can make you feel warmer.  However, doing a supported shoulder stand or even a gentle legs-up-the-wall pose http://spirithealers.blogspot.com/2013/04/yoga-pose-that-may-have-power-to-cure.html  will give you many benefits of an inversion while also helping to calm the mind.

Supported Shoulder Stand
Forward bends are also great for summer, because they are also considered to be calming postures.  If you have short hamstrings, or if you just want to amp up the calming factor, do seated forward bends with a bolster or rolled up blanket under your knees.  This will ensure that your pelvis is in a healthy, neutral position and allow you to fold forward safely.

Supported Seated Forward Fold




Tea

Staying hydrated is important when it's unbearably hot outside.  Cool herbal or yogi tea will keep you hydrated without tons of sugar.  
Ayurvedic teachings don't recommend drinking iced beverages, so keep that in mind while you're brewing up your favorite tea. Read More on Yogic tea in my post on Weight Loss Yogi Tea 

-->

Monday, July 15, 2013

Yoga Pose for Sexual Potency and Digestion

Position to Open Sex Chakra


Sexual energy is the most condensed form of physical energy and, if correctly channeled, it can play an important role in one’s personal and spiritual evolution.
For those interested in the refinement and transmutation of sexual energy for higher purposes, the pose today will be of particular interest.

  • Builds sexual potency
  • Opens and balances the Sex Chakra
  • Channels sexual energy up the spine so it can be used by the higher centers
  • Excellent for the digestive system
  • Good for the back and spine
  • Helps detoxify and cleanse the system



Be sure to warm-up correctly and not force this position. 



In particular the hamstrings and groin should be stretched and warmed up prior to trying Lotus Pose.




Lotus Pose will focus on opening and balancing your Sex Chakra (Swadhisthan Chakra), and as with all Tantric exercises, your mind can help magnify the benefits of the exercise




For this reason you should concentrate your awareness upon the Sex Chakra while doing this pose and can visualize energy rising up the spine from this region while you practice the position.  




White Tantra Yoga Position – Lotus Pose



How to Do Tantra Yoga Lotus Pose: 
  • Sit on the floor with your legs bent at the knees in front of you. 
  • Wrap your index and middle finger around your big toe of each foot.
  • Now slowly start to extend your arms and legs, while you balance on your sacrum.
  • Try to straighten your legs all the way if you can.  Don't force it.
  • Keep your eyes open and focus on a point in front of you to help you keep your balance.




  • In the final position, you will be leaning back about 30 degrees.  Try to keep your back straight.
  • Once you come into the position, hold while doing normal breathing or do Breath of Fire.
  • Bend your knees and lower your legs to the ground once you are done.
  • If you cannot hold your big toe, as indicated above, you can also simply grasp your feet instead.
Duration for Tantra Yoga Lotus Pose: 5 seconds – 3 mins


Practice Tips and Cautions for Tantra Yoga Lotus Pose:
  • As this pose increases blood flow and puts pressure on the heart, you should be cautious if you have high blood pressure or major cardiovascular issues.
  • Be careful in doing this pose if you have back or spine problems.
  • Be sure to warm-up correctly and not force this position.  There are many other good stretches you can do to prepare your body for this pose, so start with the easy ones and only attempt Lotus Position once you have improved your flexibility sufficiently.