Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter Candy Cravings

Everybody has addictions.  Mine is candy, and Easter candy is my favorite. We all have patterns that we can't seem to break.  In my journey to explore the various styles of yoga I have been looking into Kundalini yoga.  I found that these yogis have a particular kriya or meditation that is designed to cure cravings. So instead of reaching for cadbury eggs I am going to reach for my higher self in this meditation.  I have been teaching it to my classes as well and observing how my students respond to it.  One women said, "it was the first time she was able to meditate fully because there is so much going on in the meditation she wasn't able to think of anything else." Whether or not it helps with cravings for her remains to be seen, but to be able to clear the mind is worth a lot. Plus an added bonus is you can't take yourself too seriously when you do this meditation. Give it a try and you will see what I mean.

It is researched and explained by Dharma Singh Khalsa, M.D. This comes from his book Meditation as Medicine. A very interesting book especially in the face of the health care crisis that the US is finding itself in these days.

He recommends all meditation sessions begin by chanting "Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo" 3 times. This chant is specific to the practice of kundalini yoga. It translates "I honor all the teachers that have come before me and my highest self."

Here is the directions for the meditation:

Sit in a simple cross legged position or in a chair with your spine straight.

The eyes are closed and focused on the space between the eyebrows.

You make fists of your hands.  Extend your thumbs straight (like hitchhiker thumbs) and place your thumbs on your temples in the niche where they fit.

Close your jaw and lock your back molars.  Keep your lips closed.  Vibrate your jaw muscles by alternating the pressure on your molars.

Repeat silently in your mind SA TA NA MA.  Meaning of this mantra: SA means infinity, TA means life, NA means death, and MA means rebirth.

Start by doing this for 3 - 7 Minutes, with practice you can gradually build up to 20 - 31 minutes.

When you are done inhale deeply, hold your breath for 10 - 20 seconds, exhale and relax.

Here is the research and reasoning behind this particular meditation:

"The pressure exerted by the thumbs triggers a rhythmic reflex current into the central brain.  This current activates the brain area directly underneath the stem of the pineal gland.  It is said that it is an imbalance in this area that makes mental and physical addictions seemingly unbreakable.

"In modern culture, the imbalance is pandemic.  If we are not addicted to smoking, eating, drinking, or drugs, then we are addicted subconsciously to acceptance, advancement, rejection, emotional love, etc.  All these lead us to insecure and neurotic behavior patterns.

"The imbalance in this pineal area upsets the radiance of the pineal gland itself.  It is this pulsating radiance that regulates the pituitary gland.  Since the pituitary regulates the rest of the glandular system, the entire body and mind go out of balance.  This medical  meditation helps to correct this problem.  It is excellent for everyone but particularly effective for rehabilitation efforts in drug dependence, mental illness, and phobic conditions."

~ Meditation as Medicine, page 269.

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