According to yoga though, there are three main bodies:
- The physical body
- The causal body
- The subtle body
- The physical body is easy. It’s your arms, legs, and everything that you’re seeing and feeling right now.
- The causal body is much deeper it’s who you really are inside your true self.
- The subtle body lies between the two and is made up of your energy.
The chakra system is part of the subtle body and is made up of a life force energy known as prana. Prana travels along powerful energy pathways known as Nadis. There are 72 thousand Nadis. Some physical like veins and nerves, while others are energetic. The three main Nadis are
They all start at the base of the spine.
- Pingala is known to be hot and stimulating. It is associated with the sun and the sympathetic nervous system and affects the left hemisphere of our brain.
- Ida affects the right hemisphere of our brain. It is known to be cool, calming, and associated with the parasympathetic nervous system and the moon.
- Ida and Pingala weave up the body in the shape of a helix. When they are balanced, this opens the Sushumna Nadi which runs straight up the spine and is associated with the central nervous system.
Nadi Shodana (Alternate Nostril Technique)
This common yoga technique will balance both Ida and Pingala and allow energy to rise up the Sushumna Nadi. This technique is easy and great to do at the beginning or end of a chaotic day. This technique will activate your active energy and relaxation energy.
- Come to a comfortable seated position so that your spine is straight.
- Take your hands and fold down the index finger and middle finger. The rest of the fingers will stay straight.
- Place that hand on the knee. Pull in the lower belly.
- Take one long inhalation to prepare. Inhale through the nose with the lips sealed. Make the sound “saa” to yourself as you inhale. Let the inhale carry energy up the spine.
- When you feel the energy at the top of the head, then exhale. As you exhale, slowly smooth out the breath and feel the exhalation drop into the pelvic floor.
- Alternate: Bring your right hand up, close off your right nostril with your thumb. Inhale through the left nostril.
- Close off the left nostril with the other fingers. Release the thumb.
- Exhale through the right nostril.
- Now inhale through the same, right nostril.
- Retain the breath, hold your thumb to the right nostril exhale on the left side. This ends one cycle
- Start the new cycle by breathing in through the left side and exhaling on the right. Inhale right, exhale left. Then start a new cycle.
- Complete 5 to 10 cycles. Make sure each time you inhale, exhale on the opposite side.
If this seems hard, don’t give up, it sounds harder than it is. This will wake up the Nadis in the body, reduce anxiety, solve complex problems.