Before we start a discussion on Yoga, let us try to be on the same platform so that we can communicate well. As the author, it’s my duty to convince you that small things can make a huge difference. Well, if you are a physicist or just someone who knows a tiny bit about physics, you have probably heard of The Butterfly Effect. Yes, the one where, in theory, a butterfly flapping its wings in Bangalore can bring a hurricane to the Philippines. Then, we would be ready to discuss. But, I would assume that not most of us are hardcore scientists and I’ll begin with a story. A story of a boy whose application for admission into an arts college got rejected twice and later on led to wiping out 3% of the planet’s human population. So, here it goes.
A boy named Adolf wanted to be an artist. He applied to the Academy of Fine Arts but was rejected twice.
After his second rejection, his mother died, and the boy lost all his financial support. Later on, he moved to the slums of Vienna and from an artist, became a hateful soul. He developed hate for a particular group of people. After some years, he moved to Munich, joined the army and rose to power. The world today remembers him as Adolf Hitler.
If only that one application…
Every one of us affects the world in subtle ways and gets affected by various events. We believe history has happened. But, as T. S. Eliot said, “History is Now…”
It is our responsibility to shape the history of the world so that no other catastrophe happens again. For this, we need not do big things, but our tiny actions that look insignificant to others, if done properly, can be global phenomena.
Let us not get too deep. It is a subject matter of another article. The takeaway: Small things make a big difference.
Similarly, many yoga practices look small and simple but have a huge positive impact on your personal and social life. Our physical and psychological well-being not only transforms our lives but our family and society too. The most important thing is to take one step for a greater cause.
The subtleties of Yoga have far-reaching consequences, way further than your current imagination. A few minutes of Pranayama every day can rejuvenate you more than anything. It’s not just the relaxing and meditating thing. It has been found that Yoga can reverse many biochemical reactions occurring in our body, kind of like age reversal. It has potential to control gene expression. The study was published in the journal Frontiers in Immunology.
The study aims to identify how activities such as Yoga actually work. The existing explanation that Yoga provides relaxation to the mind and body doesn’t go far enough. Scientists that claim a protein complex called nuclear kappa (NF-kB) controls gene expression and boosts immune response. Story cut short – Yoga cleanses the mind and the body. It adds decades of healthy living to your life. A calm and wise consciousness in a healthy and strong body. What else can we ask for?
In other yoga practices, it has been observed that proper chanting of OM has a profound effect on our very existence. It is a very simple and easy practice but if done the right way with love and devotion and for a bit longer. It gives immense benefits, not only physical but psychological too. Just a few minutes of OM chanting helps a lot in stress management in our hectic day-to-day life.
In all yoga scriptures, including the Upanishads, the importance of OM chanting is highlighted. It is considered a very basic but an utmost important mantra. It is mentioned in Patanjali Yoga Sutra that one who only meditates upon OM, will realize their true self and will be free from disease and the fear that can cause many psychological disorders.
Ujjayi breathing is also a simple and easy practice but has a deep impact on our wellbeing. This is the only practice that can be done all the time and everywhere, in the office, while walking, even after having food.It is very effective for high blood pressure patients if it is practiced without Kumbhaka (retention). At the beginning, it should be practiced under the guidance of an experienced yoga teacher.
This is a very effective meditation for stress management and for deep relaxation. This meditation is a combination of a few asanas, breathing techniques, and OM chanting. In a 45-minute session, you will feel rejuvenated and refreshed. SVYASA Yoga University Bangalore designed the cyclic meditation technique after long research. Now, it is part of daily practice at the University campus. At the beginning, it should be practiced under the guidance of an experienced teacher.
India’s premier Institute of Medical Sciences, AIIMS, Delhi, has started Evidence-based Yoga Research, one nobody can deny. It is providing Yoga treatment along with standard treatment to 2000 heart patients in India and the UK under proper “control” which comprises of 2000 patients with just conventional treatment.
AIIMS director M.C. Misra observed:
“Yoga has shown positive results in groups of patients with hypertension, coronary artery disease and diabetes mellitus type 2.”
So is Yoga the “Raam-baan“ (ultimate) solution? Yogis have been saying so for eternity. Now, it has been backed by proper scientific evidence.
Breathing is something we always do. Always. We can’t stop breathing even for a few minutes. It’s really great that controlling which nostril to use for breathing can bring great changes (Anulom Vilom). It helps beat high blood pressure, hypertension, respiratory problems and what not.
A blissful and healthy life with peace of mind. Just invest some minutes every day to Yoga and add healthy decades to your life. That is the power of Yoga. The power of seemingly small things making a gigantic difference in your life. And, since “History is Now,” that gigantic difference will affect those around you, and many others, for a greater good.