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PURIFICATION

 

THE PURPOSE of Hatha Yoga is to gain control of the breath, but this is not possible until the body is thoroughly purified of energy blockages and thus strengthened.

The text opens its section on prãnãyãma with the following quotation:

Posture becoming established, a Yogi, master of himself, eating salutary and moderate food,[1]  

[1] Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, i, 60: "Abstemious feeding is that in which three fourths of hunger is satisfied with food, well cooked with ghee (clarified butter), and sweets, and eaten with the offering of it to Siva." Compare Gheranda Samhitã, v, 21-2: ".... pure, sweet and cooling food should be eaten to fill half the stomach; eating thus sweet juices with pleasure, and leaving the other half of the stomach empty is called moderation in diet. Half the stomach should be filled with food, one quarter with water; and one quarter should be kept empty for practising prãnãyãma."

should practise prãnãyãma, as instructed by his guru.[2]

[2] Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 1.

WATER.. Of course in these modern times we must purify our water using reverse osmosis and activated carbon which removes pesticides and fluoride and fluorosilicic acid at the molecular level.

FOOD.. Also we must have pure food removing pesticides with vinegar - giving them a good scrub - or with soap and then rinsing well afterwards.  We must avoid poisonous genetically modified organisms or GMO or Frankenstein food.

AIR.. Also we must have purified air using air conditioning to remove most poisons, cleaning the filter every few days - one of the reasons I like to live in hot countries using the A/C 24 hours a day. Many cities have factories which produce dioxins - the product of heat in foundries and ceramic factories. Dioxins can only be removed using activated carbon air filters. When filled up with poison after 2 to 4 weeks, the carbon must be removed and heated up to 5 too 600F or 250C in an electric oven for 4 to 5 hours, cooled down and replaced in the air filter which can then be used for another 2 to 4 weeks. As the carbon is heated, all the poison absorbed over the previous weeks is released so best heat up and release outside.

when the whole system of nãdis which is full of impurities, is cleaned, then the Yogi becomes able to conserve the Prãña.[3]  

[3] Compare Gheranda Samhitã, v, 34-5: The student asked the teacher, "Ocean of mercy! How are nãdis purified, what is the purification of nãdis; I want to learn all this; recite to me." Gheranda, the teacher, said, "The vãyu does not (cannot) enter the nãdis so long as they are full of impurities. How then can Prãnãyãma be accomplished? How can there be knowledge of Tattvas (subtle forces of nature)? Therefore, first the Nãdis should be purified, and then Prãnãyãma should be practised."

With regard to the six kriyas I also recommend fasting as a means of removing poisons from the body.

Fasting is hard due to food addiction implant blockages which want to harm us using food, so the knowledge that we are working with food addiction implant blockages is good to resist the evil empire. For that reason it is good to practise fasting, gently entering into water fasts smoothly and easily.

1. First fasting for two weeks using raw vegetables or salads. Rest and repeat as necessary.

2. Then move up to juice fasts.

3. Finally, water fasts. Jesus recommends one days for each year of your life. Satchidananda recommends to finish when there is no bad taste in the mouth when you wake up in the morning, rather your saliva is fresh and juicy. Personally I need to fast at least one month in any year and sometimes two months even as a vegetarian due to the poison absorbed from Food, air and water. Still my nature is to be overweight. I have no difficulty after the first three days, so fasting as a technique suits me..

As with anything, we can become addicted to fasting and die by doing too much of it. Moderation in all things.

The time of fast is also a good time to start your strengthening and purifying practise of Agnisar Kriya which can be more of a help if combing with Energy Enhancement Seven Step Process to remove energy blockages. Agnisar Kriyas pushes the Energy Blockages out of the body. Energy Enhancement can ground their NKM and remove them permanently.. see below..

By removing the impurities of the nãdis, the air can be restrained, according to ones wish, and the appetite is increased, the divine sound is awakened, and the body becomes healthy. If there be excess of fat or phlegm in the body, the six kinds of kriyãs (duties) should be performed first. But others, not suffering from the excess of these, should not perform them. The six kinds are: Dhauti, Neti, Trãtaka,[4]  

[4] This practice was not included in my discipline for the purification of the body, but I had to learn it during my preliminary training period as a preparation for the advanced meditation exercises. The technique is simple. Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 31-2: "Being calm, one should gaze steadily at a small mark, till the eyes are filled with tears. This is called Trãtaka by ãchãryas. Trãtaka destroys the eye diseases and removes sloth, etc. It should be kept secret very carefully, like a box of jewellery." Compare Gheranda Samhitã, i, 53-4: "Gaze steadily without winking at any small object, until the tears begin to flow. This is called Trãtaka or Gazing by the wise. By practising this Yoga, Sãmbhavî Mudrã is obtained; and certainly all diseases of the eye are destroyed and clairvoyance is induced."

Nauli, and Kapãla Bhãti. These are called the six actions.[5]

[5] Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 1-22. Compare Gheranda Samhitã, i, 12. This text lists the six purification processes: "Dhauti, Vasti, Neti, Laulikî, Trãtaka, Kapãlabhãti are the Satkarmas or six practices, known as Sãdhana." Inconsistencies will be discussed later. The importance of these practices is indicated by the position they command in this authoritative text.

I was required to learn these six kriyãs before entering the retreat. It is customary to devote from one to three months to this preparatory period; in my case it took about three weeks, since I had been engaged in physical training previously. Everyone must learn these simple techniques. By taking up one at a time and giving it a little attention every day, I found no difficulty in mastering them.

Dhauti means to wash, clean, or purify. The Yogi is particularly concerned with the inside of his body; a simple technique of purification has been devised. "A strip of cloth, about three inches wide and fifteen cubits long, moistened with warm water, should be slowly swallowed in the way shown by the guru, and should be taken out again. This is called Dhauti Karma."[6]

[6] Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 24. Compare Gheranda Samhitã, i, 13-44: "The Dhautis are of four kinds, and they clear away the impurities of the body. They are (A) Antardhauti (internal washing); (B) Dantadhauti (cleaning the teeth); (C) Hrd-dhauti (cleaning the chest); (D) Múlaodhana (cleaning the rectum). (A) ANTAR-DHAUTI is again subdivided into four parts: Vãtasãra (wind purification), Vãrisãra (water purification), Vahnisãra (fire purification), and Bahiskrta. VATASARA-DHAUTI: contract the mouth like the beak of a crow and drink air slowly, and filling the stomach slowly with it, move it therein, and then slowly force it out through the lower passage. The Vãtasãra is a very secret process, it causes the purification of the body, it destroys all diseases and increases the gastric fire. VARISARA-DHAUTI: fill the mouth with water down to the throat, and then drink it slowly; and then move it through the stomach, forcing it downwards expelling it through the rectum. This process should be kept very secret. It purifies the body. And by practising it with care, one gets a luminous or shining body. The Vãrisãra is the highest Dhauti. He who practises it with ease, purifies his filthy body and turns it into a shining one. AGNISARA or Fire Purification: press in the navel knot or intestines towards the spine for one hundred times. This is Agnisãra or fire process. This gives success in the practice of Yoga, it cures all the diseases of the stomach (gastric juice) and increases the internal fire. This form of Dhauti should be kept very secret, and it is hardly to be attained even by the gods. By this Dhauti alone one certainly gets a luminous body. BAHISKRTA-DHAUTI: by Kãkacañcu or crow-bill Mudrã fill the stomach with air, hold it there for one hour and a half and then force it down towards the intestines. This Dhauti must be kept a great secret, and must not be revealed to anybody. Then standing in navel-deep water, draw out the Saktinãdî (long intestines), wash the Nãdî with hands so long as its filth is not all washed away; wash it with care, and then draw it in again into the abdomen. This process should be kept secret. It is not easily to be attained even by the gods. Simply by this Dhauti one gets Deva-deha (Godlike body). As long as a person has not the power of retaining the breath for an hour and a half (or retaining wind in the stomach for that period) so long he cannot achieve this grand Dhauti or purification, known as Bahiskrtadhauti. (B) DANTA-DHAUTI, or Teeth Purification. Danta-Dhauti is of five kinds; washing of the teeth, of the root of the tongue, of the mouth of each of the two eustachian tubes and of the frontal sinuses. DANTA-MULA-DHAUTI: rub the teeth with catechu-powder or with pure earth, so long as dental impurities are not removed. This teeth-washing is a great Dhauti and an important process in the practice of Yoga for the Yogins. It should be done daily in the morning by the Yogins, in order to preserve the teeth. In purification this is approved of by the Yogins. JIHVA-SODHANA, or Tongue Dhauti: I shall now tell the method of cleansing the tongue. The elongation of the tongue destroys old age, death and disease. Join together the three fingers known as the index. the middle and the ring finger, put them into the throat, and rub well and clean the root of the tongue, and by washing it again throw out the phlegm. Having thus washed it rub it with butter, and milk it again and again; then by holding the tip of the tongue with an iron instrument pull it out slowly and slowly. Do this daily with diligence before the rising and setting sun. By so doing, the tongue becomes elongated. KARNA-DHAUTI, or Ear-Cleaning: Clean the two holes of thc ears by the index and the ring fingers. By practising it daily, the mystical sounds are heard. KAPALARANDHRA-DHAUTI: Rub with the thumb of the right hand the depression in the forehead near the bridge of the nose. By the practice of this Yoga, diseases arising from derangements of phlegmatic humours are cured. The vessels become purified and clairvoyance is induced. This should he practised daily after awakening from sleep, after meals, and in the evening. (C) HRD-DHAUTI: Hrd-dhauti, or purification of the chest (or rather the throat) is of three kinds, viz., by a Danda (a stick), Vamana (vomiting), and by Vãsas (cloth). DANDA-DHAUTI: Take either a plantain stalk or a stalk of turmeric (Haridrã) or a stalk of cane, and thrust it slowly into the gullet and then draw it out slowly. By this process all the phlegm, bile and other impurities are expelled out of the mouth. By this Danda-Dhauti every kind of heart-disease is surely cured. VAMANA-DHAUTI: After meal, let the wise practitioner drink water full up to the throat, then looking for a short while upwards, let him vomit it out again. By daily practising this Yoga, disorders of the phlegm and bile are cured. VASO-DHAUTI: let him swallow slowly a thin cloth, four fingers wide, then let him draw it out again. This is called Vãso-Dhauti. This cures Gulma or abdominal diseases, fever, enlarged spleen, leprosy, and other diseases and disorders of phlegm and bile, and day by day the practitioner gets health, strength, and cheerfulness. (D) MULA-SODHANA or Purification of the Rectum: The Apãnavãyu does not flow freely so long as the rectum is not purified. Therefore, with the greatest care let him practise this purification of the large intestines. By the stalk of the root of Haridrã (turmeric) or the middle finger, the rectum should be carefully cleansed with water over and over again. This destroys constipation, indigestion, and dyspepsia, and increases the beauty and vigour of the body and enkindles the sphere of the fire (i.e., the gastric juice)." It is quite unnecessary for the student to practise every one of these techniques. Those that are of outstanding importance will be treated separately.

 The importance assigned in tradition to this practice is seen from the next verse, "there is no doubt that cough, asthma, enlargement of the spleen, leprosy and, twenty kinds of diseases born of phlegm disappear by the practice of Dhauti Karma."[7]

[7] Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 25. To understand such statements, one should study the Indian form of medicine called aryuveda. The most authoritative texts are Susruta, which is in three volumes, and Charaka, which is in four volumes. To be independent of a teacher, a student must make an exhaustive study of this subject.

Begin with a small piece of cloth about three feet long. I found that an ordinary four-inch surgeons gauze met every requirement. First put the cloth in a basin of water, and after it is thoroughly saturated insert one end of it as far back in. the throat as possible and go through the motions of eating and swallowing. This will encourage the throat to take hold. There may be some spasms, but they will soon pass, as will all soreness that is experienced. It will take only a few days for the throat and stomach to accommodate themselves. Do not try to accomplish the feat on the first day. I began with a few inches and increased the length a little each day until I had swallowed the required twenty-two and one-half feet. With a little patience, anyone can master the technique in. about three weeks.

I practised ten to fifteen minutes each day, after which, regardless of success, I discontinued the discipline until the following day. In this way there was no undue strain imposed upon the delicate lining of the throat. The first task is to accommodate the muscles to this foreign intrusion. When this has been done, time and practice will develop the needed strength to swallow the entire cloth. To overcome the difficulty encountered at the initial stage, I found it helpful to sweeten the water in which the cloth was moistened. On a few occasions I soaked it in milk.

Extracting the cloth is the simplest part of the procedure. The problem is to make it remain in the stomach, for as soon as it accumulates, there is a tendency to throw it out. I found that after I had rested for a few seconds the spasms passed away. Once the cloth has been swallowed, the stomach should be churned in. order to insure a thorough cleansing Then bend over a basin and gently pull the loose end of the strip of cloth, while holding the mouth in a gasping position. If the throat contracts, pause for a few seconds and it will relax its grip. Do not pull hard, for there is nothing to fear. After a few days it was possible for me to execute the entire procedure without the slightest difficulty.

Experience makes it advisable to caution that if one uses the regular four-inch surgeons gauze it is a safety-first measure to tie a knot at the point of the measured length to be used and then to leave three or four feet extra to remain unswallowed. In perfecting these practices the student becomes more bold, and frequently curiosity causes many unexpected problems. One might try to swallow up to the last quarter of an inch and by some rare accident he might let the end slip and find himself with a stomach full of cloth and no end to pull. If this should happen, the problem would be, not the stomach, but the mind, for the student will envision all sorts of fantastic doom. This has happened to me, hence these words of caution. In such an event, drink a strong solution of salt water or any other emetic, and the stomach will expel it immediately. After the cloth has been in. the stomach twenty minutes or so, it will start to move out, passing through the pyloric valve. Even so, there is nothing to fear. Pull lightly and the muscles will release their grip. To evade all such unnecessary catastrophes, do not leave the cloth in the stomach more than twenty minutes and always leave a couple of feet of the cloth unswallowed.

By following these directions the average student will be able to learn this technique in three weeks. However, I found that I needed a full month in order to acquire sufficient strength to swallow the entire cloth in ten minutes, which is the usual time allotted to this performance. One should practise this technique another month or two; afterward he can set it aside and try to master another. If a long period of time passes before there is occasion to practise it again, it will take only a few days to accustom the throat to the cloth. No special difficulties will arise.

It is customary to practise this every morning during the preparatory period of the retreat. After the system has been thoroughly cleansed and the new pattern of living has been established, it can be dispensed with. However, I was advised to continue it until I had become proficient in the practice of prãnãyãma.

There is another form of dhauti that one can learn to advantage, especially when no cloth is available. It is called vamana dhauti.[8]  

[8] Gheranda Samhitã, i, 39 See previous reference for classical description. For the dry forms see ibid., iii, 86-7: "Contract the lips, like the beak of a crow, and drink (draw in) the air slowly and slowly. This is Kãkî (crow) mudrã, destroyer of all diseases. The Kãkî-mudrã is a great Mudrã, kept secret in all Tantras. By virtue of this, one becomes free from disease like a crow." Ibid., 92-3:tending the face a little forward, let him drink (draw in) air through the gullet; this is called Bhujanginî Mudrã (Serpent-mudrã), destroyers of decay and death. This Serpent-mudrã quickly destroys all stomach diseases, especially indigestion, dyspepsia, etc."

[9] These are the basic principles of their system of physiology. See Susruta, Introduction and passim.

[10] These are the fundamental constituents of the body: chyle, blood, flesh, far, bone, marrow, and semen. See Susruta, Introduction and passim.

[11] Indriyas means the faculties of perception and action. They are known as the five knowing and working senses. The first are the powers of hearing, feeling, seeing, tasting, and smelling. The latter are the powers of speech, procreation, elimination, grasping, and locomotion. The Sãmkhya philosophy develops these concepts.

[12] Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 26-8. Compare Gheranda Samhitã, i, 45-9 "The Vastis described are of two kinds, viz.: Jala-Vasti (or water Vasti) and Suska Vasti (or dry Vasti). Water Vasti is done in water and dry Vasti always on land. JALA-VASTT: Entering the water up to the navel and assuming the posture called Utkatãsana, let him contract and dilate the sphincter-muscle of the anus. This is called Jala-Vasti. This cures Prameha (urinary disorders), udavarta (disorders of digestion) and Kruravãyu (disorders of the wind). The body becomes free from all diseases and becomes as beautiful as that of the god Cupid. STHALA-VASTI: Assuming the posture called Pascimottãna, let him move the intestines slowly downwards, then contract and dilate the sphincter-muscle of the anus with Avinî-Mudrã. By this practice of Yoga, constipation never occurs, and it increases gastric fire and cures flatulence." These practices are not mentioned in Siva Samhitã.

[13] See below, p. 43 for nauli and p. 70 for avinî mudrã.

[14] This posture has already been described on p. 24 n.

[15] Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 29-30. Compare Gheranda Samhitã, i, 50-1: "Take a thin thread, measuring half a cubit and insert it into the nostrils, and passing it through, pull it out by the mouth. This is called Neti-Kriyã. By practising the Neti-Kriyã, one obtains Khecarî Siddhi. It destroys the disorders of phlegm and produces clairvoyance or clear sight."

[16] These two methods are not mentioned in Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã. Gheranda Samhitã describes them as forms of kapãlabhãti; see i, 55-60: "The Kapãlabhãti is of three kinds: Vãma-krama, Vyut-krama, and Sitkrama. [Krama means performance, method or course of conduct; Vãma means left; Vyut, inverted procedure; sit, hissing sound.] They destroy disorders of phlegm. VAMA-KRAMA: Draw the wind through the left nostril and expel it through the right, and draw it again through the right and expel it through the left. This inspiration and expiration must be done without any force. This practice destroys disorders due to phlegm. VYUT-KRAMA: Draw the water through the two nostrils and expel it through the mouth slowly and slowly. This is called Vyut-krama which destroys disorders due to phlegm. SIT-KRAMA: Suck water through the mouth and expel it through the nostrils. By this practice of Yoga one becomes like the god Cupid. Old age never comes to him and decrepitude never disfigures him. The body becomes healthy, elastic, and disorders due to phlegm are destroyed."

A similar practice is listed as a mudrã. Compare Gheranda Samhitã, iii, 88-91: "Stand in neck-deep water, draw in the water through the nostrils, and throw it out by the mouth. Then draw in the water through (the mouth and expel it through) the nostrils. Let one repeat this again and again. This is called Mãtangini Mudrã (Elephant-mudrã), destroyer of decay and death. In a solitary place, free from human intrusion, one should practise with fixed attention this Elephant-mudrã; by so doing he becomes strong like the elephant. Wherever he may be, by this process the Yogin enjoys great pleasure; therefore, this mudrã should be practiced with great care."

[17] The channel in the spinal column through which the breath of life is believed to pass.

[18] To understand what is meant by a statement of this kind, the student is advised to study The Tibetan Book of the Dead, by W. Y. Evans-Wentz.

[19] Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, iii, 54-9. Compare Gheranda Samhitã, iii, 10-11: "Contract the bowels equally above and below the navel towards the back, so that the abdominal viscera may touch the back. He who practices this Uddiyãna (Flying up), without ceasing, conquers death. [The Great Bird (Breath), by this process, is instantly forced up into the Susumnã, and flies (moves) constantly therein only.) Of all Bandhas this is the best. The complete practice of this makes emancipation easy.

Compare Siva Samhitã, iv, 48-52: "When the intestines above and below the navel are brought to the left side, it is called Uddãna-Bandha the destroyers of all sins and sorrows. The left side viscera of the abdominal cavity should be brought above the navel. This is Uddãna-Bandha, the lion of the elephant of death. The Yogi, who always practises it four times a day, purifies thereby his navel, through which the winds are purified. By practising it for six months, the Yogi certainly conquers death; the gastric fire is kindled, and there takes place an increase of the fluids of the body. Through this, consequently, the Vigrahasiddhi (power of expansion) is also obtained. All the diseases of the Yogi are certainly destroyed by it. Having learnt the method from the Guru, the wise Yogi should practise it with great care. The most inaccessible Mudrã should be practised in a retired and undisturbed place."

[20] A supplementary practice frequently used to enable one to develop this position is listed in Gheranda Samhitã, iii, 61: "Make the abdomen look quite hollow just like a tank. This is Tãdãgî (Tank) Mudrã, destroyer of decay and death."

[21] Compare Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 33-4: "Sitting on the toes with the heels raised above the ground, and the palms resting on the ground, in this bent posture the belly is moved forcibly from left to right just as in vomiting. This is called by adepts the Nauli Karma. It removes dyspepsia, increases appetite and digestion, and is like the goddess of creation and causes happiness. It dries up all the disorders. This Nauli is an excellent exercise in Hatha Yoga." Instead of this practice, Gheranda Samhitã, i, 52, gives another practice: "With great force move the stomach and intestines from one side to the other. This is called Laulikî-Yoga. This destroys all diseases and increases the bodily fire." I was taught laulikî as given here. It can be used by individuals who are physically unable to learn nauli as I have described it. There are times when laulikî is quite satisfactory, but the student should endeavour to master nauli, which is one of the fundamental requirements for those who wish to proceed to the more advanced practices.

[22] These are the three basic principles of the system of physiology upon which Hatha Yoga is based.

[23] This is the latent creative force in man. See below, p. 60.

[24] It is said that when the latent creative force of man becomes dynamic and begins to move through its channel in the spinal cord, at certain places, where there is a nerve ganglion, it encounters difficulties. This would be analogous to a point where a number of electric wires converge before being distributed. There are special techniques for overcoming these obstacles.

[25] Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 59-67. Compare Gheranda Samhitã, v, 75-7: "As the bellows of the ironsmith constantly dilate and contract, similarly let him slowly draw in the air by both nostrils and expand the stomach; then throw it out quickly (the wind making sound like bellows). Having thus inspired and expired quickly twenty times, let him perform Kumbhaka; then let him expel it by the previous method. Let the wise one perform this Bhastrikã (bellows-like) Kumbhaka thrice; he will never suffer from any disease and will be always healthy."

Compare this with the description of the last purification process given in the text called kapãlabhãti. Hatha Yoga Pradîpikã, ii, 35-7: "When inhalation and exhalation are performed very quickly, like a pair of bellows of a blacksmith, it dries up all the disorders from the excess of phlegm, and is known as Kapãla Bhãti. When Prãnãyãma is performed after getting rid of obesity born of the defects of phlegm, by the performance of the six duties, it easily brings success. Some ãchãryãs (teachers) do not advocate any other practice, being of opinion that all the impurities are dried up by the practice of Prãnãyãma alone." For description of kapãlabhãti as given in Gheranda Samhitã, see above, p. 40 n. The descriptions given by the two texts differ, but this is of no practical import. The purpose of this practice can be seen from the meaning of the word. In Sanskrit kapãla means skull and bhãti is derived from the root meaning to shine.

 

The technique is simple. Drink eight or nine glassfuls of water, or enough so that it backs up into the throat. This will create a feeling of nausea, making it easy to empty the stomach of its entire contents. In the beginning, in order completely to evacuate the stomach, I had to massage the root of the tongue with the fingers. After a little practice it was possible to empty the stomach voluntarily. When this stage had been reached, I had only to drink a few glasses of water and churn the stomach for a few minutes in order to wash the stomach.

The next important technique described in the text for cleansing the body is basti.

Squatting in. navel-deep water, and introducing a six-inch-long smooth piece of half an inch diameter pipe, open at both ends, half inside the anus; it (anus) should be contracted and the water drawn up and then expelled. This washing is called the Basti Karma (Syringe-action). By practising this Basti Karma, colic, enlarged spleen and dropsy. arising from the disorders of vãta (air), pitta (bile) and kapha (phlegm)[9] are all cured, By practising Basti with water the Dhãtus,[10] the Indriyas[11] and the mind become clear. It gives glow and tone to the body and increases the appetite. All the disorders disappear)[12]

When one undertakes to learn basti, it is assumed that nauli and avinî mudrã have already been mastered. These are explained later.[13] The student will then encounter no problem in accomplishing the technique described in the text. It can be performed by using an ordinary nozzle from an enema bag and a bathtub full of water. Insert the nozzle while squatting in the tub in water navel high, and then do nauli. I found that I was able to get the desired results on the first attempt. The isolation of the recti muscles by nauli creates a vacuum which sucks in the water. When the breath is gone, withdraw the nozzle and rest a moment; then repeat the practice. It takes only a few seconds to draw in sufficient water; so one should be able to do it within one breath. This is only a matter of convenience, so breathe as many times as is comfortable.

I was required to learn how to execute this technique without the aid of the nozzle, as follows: Place the feet about one foot apart and assume a squatting position with the arms locked around the flexed knees. The purpose of this is to enable one to put forth the necessary muscular effort; so shift around until a comfortable position is found. While in this position, empty the lungs and force the rectum out as far as possible, then draw it in. This requires strong muscular action. Once it is in, while one is still in the original position and holding the breath, do nauli, which isolates the recti muscles of the abdomen. If the action is strong enough, the anal sphincters will open and the water will rush in. By this time the breath will be gone and it will be necessary to rest for a moment. The next time it will not be necessary to force the rectum out; it will be sufficient to draw it in and do nauli. Success is solely dependent upon perfection of nauli and avinî mudrã. I was not given the technique of basti until I had perfected the practices of nauli and avinî, which will be discussed later. Because of this I was able to succeed after two or three experiments, which were necessary to find out what the instructions meant. If one is unable to achieve success after executing all the movements, the sphincters may be opened by the fingers, which should be removed the moment the water begins to rush in.

This should be practised upon arising in the morning, before anything has been put into the stomach. It is not essential to have a large quantity of water. It can be done with a very small quantity. On many occasions it has not been necessary for me to use more than a small basin of water. In these instances I experienced no unusual difficulty, except that a little more effort was required to suck in the water. After the colon is filled with water, by isolating the recti muscles and rolling them from left to right it is possible to move the water through the large intestine. When it is time to remove the water, the muscles should be rolled from right to left. It is also helpful to roll the abdomen from the top downward; this will help to squeeze out what remains. I found that if any further trouble is encountered in getting the water out, by using mayurãsana[14] it is possible to flush the colon thoroughly. For this purpose the legs should be spread apart, and the posture should be held for at least thirty seconds, after which mayûrãsana can be repeated if it is still necessary.

The advantages of this practice are self-evident. I found it expedient to include it as part of my daily routine in order to assure a clean intestinal tract. There is not a great deal of waste matter when the diet is so materially reduced; however, it is necessary to keep the system free from the small deposits of waste matter formed by the normal metabolic function of the system. I found basti completely satisfactory for this purpose. Any one living in a modern city may have some doubt as to the practicality of this exercise, in the light of modem methods of colonic irrigation. But it must be kept in mind that these practices were devised centuries before the birth of this Western civilization and that they were intended to be used by those living in a very primitive material environment. The Yogi usually carried on his practices in a small cave or in an isolated retreat in the jungle. There were no conveniences; there was nothing but a stream of water and the need to cleanse the system internally. After one has mastered the technique, it will be difficult for him to conceive of a more convenient method.

Neti is given as the next cleansing practice. The description is simple:

A cord made of threads, soft and about six inches long, should be passed through the passage of the nose and taken out by the mouth. This is called by Adepts the Neti Karma.

The Neti is the cleaner of the brain and the giver of divine sight. It soon destroys all the diseases of the cervical and scapular regions.[15]

The simplest way I found to do this was to purchase a small catheter - the smallest size. Tip the head back a little and insert the catheter straight into the nose, keeping it as much on a level as possible. Do not be rough, but push it slowly so that there is time enough for the delicate mucous membranes to accommodate themselves. Soon the end will be felt where the nose joins the throat. All that need be done then, is to reach into the mouth with the fingers and pull the catheter out. If there is any trouble catching hold of the catheter, coughing a little will help throw it out where it can be reached. When both ends of the catheter are in your hand, draw it back and forth a few times before withdrawing it out through the mouth. This causes the saliva to flow freely and stimulates the entire sinus region.

A substitute that I learned for this technique is to draw water into the nose and expel it through the mouth and then reverse the process by taking water into the mouth and expelling it through the nose.[16] This last procedure is much more difficult and will require a little experimentation on the part of the student; however, it is not too difficult.

Take a mouthful of water and hold it in the back of the throat without swallowing; close the mouth and shove the tongue against the roof of the mouth, creating a pressure and leaving no way of escape for the water but through the nose. At the same time bend the head forward and blow air out through the nose. One should learn to do this after practising a few times each day for a week. The first few efforts will be handicapped by strange sensations, but these will pass quickly. There is no danger, and the rewards are well worth the effort of learning. I have found this an excellent method of cleansing the head in order to stave off a cold. This technique is not essential in order to qualify for the practice of Yoga; however, it is well worth knowing.

AGNISAR KRIYA.. or Uddyana - Agnisar Kriyas pushes the Energy Blockages out of the body. Energy Enhancement can ground their NKM and remove them permanently.. see below..

The next practice given to me is the foundation for all advanced work and should be mastered by the student. It is called uddiyãna. In the texts it is listed as a mudrã; however, it should be perfected as soon as possible.

Uddiyãna is so called by the Yogis because by its practice the Prãña (Vãyu-breath) flies (flows) in the Susumnã.[17] Uddiyãna [means flying up, soaring] is so called because the great bird Prãna [breath], tied to it, flies without being fatigued. It is explained below. The belly above the navel is pressed backwards towards the spine. This Uddiyãna Bandha is like a lion for the elephant of death. Uddiyãna is always very easy when learned from a guru. The practiser of this, if old, becomes young again. The portions above and below the navel, should be drawn backwards towards the spine. By practising this for six months one can undoubtedly conquer death.[18] Of all the Bandhas, Uddiyãna is the best; for by binding it firmly liberation comes spontaneously.[19]

A more detailed description will make it easier to learn. Stand with the feet apart and the hands on the bent legs, in a semi-squatting position. Make the posture comfortable, and then empty the lungs. With the breath out, forcibly contract the abdominal muscles, raising the viscera until a large depression is made under the diaphragm (see illustration).[20] One should be able to place both fists in the pocket that is made. Then suddenly relax. Repeat this alternating contraction and relaxation ten times before taking another breath. This is called one round of ten counts. Before the next round, stand up straight and rest for a few seconds until the normal flow of breath returns. Never force any exercise or impose a strain upon the system. If this exercise causes undue fatigue, cut the time in half. The practices of Yoga are designed to make one grow strong, and this requires time. When you have rested, empty the lungs and repeat the process another ten times. The average individual should be able to do five rounds; however, if any pain is felt or breathing becomes difficult, begin with three. After a weeks time add another five rounds. Naturally, this will vary for each individual, depending on his age, his physical structure, and his condition at the time of starting the practice. After one has a measure of his capacity and has accustomed the body to the exercise, it is possible to increase the number of strokes for each exhalation. However, do not sacrifice the vigour of contraction for speed, which will come in due time.

An outline of the general plan I followed when developing this practice will be a helpful guide: however, it is not intended as final. Each individual must work out his own procedure. It was not long before I could execute twenty contractions on each exhalation for ten rounds. I kept up this pace for one month. After my muscles became hard I practised every morning arid late in the afternoon, before dinner. After another month I added five rounds each week to my daily schedule, continuing to repeat it twice a day. When I reached a total of 500 contractions for each practice, I used this standard for a month before I began to add more rounds. My next goal was 750 contractions. This is considered the minimum limit when practising Yoga.

When all signs of effort had gone and I felt as fresh at the end of my practice period as I did at the beginning, I increased the number of contractions on each breath until I was finally able to contract fifty times on one exhalation. I reached this limit by slow stages; at no time did I force the practice. It was not long before I could execute 1,000 contractions twice a day. After another thirty days at this pace I dropped the afternoon practice period and increased the total number of counts in the morning, until I reached a maximum of 1,500 counts.

The entire practice required from thirty to forty minutes, depending upon the length of the intervals between rounds. Nothing is gained by increasing the number of contractions on each breath. It is only a convenience; do not sacrifice thoroughness for speed. I was instructed to build up to this point of efficiency slowly and then to maintain it for a period of three months. Then the practice is considered mastered; thereafter one is privileged to use it as one sees fit or as circumstances demand. For ordinary purposes in daily life one or two hundred contractions are sufficient, but the student whose goal is more highly developed practices of Yoga should start at the very beginning to master this technique. It is an important stepping stone.

The next step in my practice was nauli.[21] Any student who has given six months to uddiyãna is ready to attempt this step. It consists of the isolation and rolling of the rectus abdominis, the straight muscles of the abdomen. Assume the same semi-squatting position used in uddiyãna. but instead of placing the hands far down on the thighs, raise them a little and turn the arms so that the fingers are on the inside of the leg rather than on the outside as in the other position. This enables one to get a better leverage. Empty the lungs and contract all the muscles of the abdominal area. While holding this position, isolate the muscles and push them forward (see illustration). The student will have to experiment with various ways of getting control of these muscles; however, before starting, it is of paramount importance that he attain a fair degree of efficiency with uddiyãna. Only then will it be easy for him. If nauli seems hopeless at first, do not despair; return to uddiyãna, and the other will come in time.

After the muscles have been isolated so that it is possible to push them straight forward and draw them back, the student should try to palate each one separately. This is accomplished by bending slightly to the left arid relaxing the muscle on the right side. When in this position it is possible to work the muscle on the left side independently of the other (see illustration). The reverse of this should also be practised (see illustration). The next step is to roll the muscles from one side to the other. Start by slowly rolling them from left to right. This should be done ten times on one breath and is called one round of ten counts. Resume natural breathing for a few seconds, then reverse the process by rolling them from right to left ten times. Nothing remains but to build up the strength of the muscles.

This practice requires considerable more power than uddiyãna, but by regulated discipline it can be built up to the same number of repetitions in a years time. I started by working the muscles backward and forward ten times on one breath. After resting I worked the muscle on the left side ten times. After another breath I began on the right muscle. At the end of my first years work on uddiyana I added ten rounds of each of these movements to my daily schedule for several months.

When I finally became proficient enough so that there was no labour in the practice, I dropped uddiyãna and concentrated upon nauli. First I increased the count from ten to twenty-five for each exhalation. When several months had passed, I had a fair degree of control, and I took up the rolling movements. On one exhalation I would roll the recti twenty-five times to the left. After resting a few seconds I rolled the recti twenty-five times to the right. The full practice consisted of ten rounds each- forward, to the left, and to the right-or 250 straight forward, then 250 times to the left and 250 times to the right. As the months went by I continued to increase the number of rounds, but never the number of movements on each expulsion of air. For maximum efficiency twenty-five counts was most satisfactory. It is not necessary to carry these exercises to such extremes in order to obtain physical benefits. They were assigned to me as a preparation for the advanced practice of Yoga, and I had to master them before I was permitted to take up the next step. During this initial period, when I was learning techniques, I noted a sharper appetite, better vision, and better physical tone. All the muscles of my body were in good condition, hard and solid. I enjoyed excellent health and was free from all minor ailments of sedentary life.

The last purification practice given to me was bhastrikã (bellows), which is listed as a breathing exercise in the text. The description given in the text is rather vague, considering its importance:

The Padmãsana consists in crossing the legs and placing the feet on both the thighs; it is the destroyer of all sins. Binding the Padmãsana and keeping the body straight, closing the mouth carefully, let the air be expelled through the nose. It should be filled up to the lotus of the heart, by drawing it in with force, making noise and touching the throat, the chest and the head. It should be expelled again and filled again and again as before, just as a pair of bellows of the blacksmith is worked with force. In the same way the air of the body should be moved intelligently, filling it through the right nostril when fatigue is experienced. The nose should be lightly held with the middle and forefingers, till the belly is filled with air and does not become heavy. Having confined it properly, it should be expelled through the Idã (left nostril). This destroys Vãta, pitta (bile) and phlegm[22] and increases the digestive power (the gastric fire). The air so treated quickly awakens the Kuñdalini,[23] purifies the system, gives pleasure, and is beneficial. It destroys phlegm and the impurities accumulated at the entrance of the Brahma Nãdî. This Bhastrikã should be performed plentifully for it breaks the three knots; Brahma granthi (in the chest), Visñu granthi (in the throat) and Rudra granthi[24] (between the eyebrows) of the body.[25]

The technique is quite simple. Assume one of the meditation ãsanas- preferably padmãsana, but siddhãsana will do in the beginning. When the position is comfortable, force all the air out of the lungs by a sudden contraction of the abdominal muscles. Automatically they will return to their natural position; so there is no need of any conscious effort for the inhalation. This forced exhalation and automatic inhalation should be done at the rate of sixty times a minute for one minute and should be followed by a short suspension. Afterward let the air out slowly and when the lungs are empty resume normal breathing for a minute; then repeat the process. For ordinary purposes this can be done from three to five times. If the individual has perfected uddiyãna and nauli, this rate for one minute will be an easy routine. I began this way, but in. a couple of weeks I increased the speed of the exhalations to 120 a minute and extended the time to two minutes. I found no difficulty in suspending for two minutes. In three weeks I was able to perform ten rounds without the slightest discomfort. After another month I increased the breathing time to three minutes and decreased the rest period, but did not alter the suspension. I found this sufficient for all practical purposes, for I was using the exercise as a means of cleansing the system.

With no practice of Yoga should pain be endured. Pain is treated by the Yogis as a stop signal. Until the muscles are hardened, the student may feel a stitch in his side. When this happens, rest for a few moments and then start again. If it persists, wait until the following day.

These are the basic purification processes, and without them progress is hampered; but with them success is readily forthcoming. Their general effect seems to be better health and the normal mental conditions that accompany such a state of well-being.