Tuesday, March 2, 2010
Here's a very simple nostril lesson via a large generalization. When your left nostril is more open than the right one, it's a good time to be relaxed. When your right nostril is more open than the left, it's a good time to be active.
For instance, if you're just getting out of bed in the morning, it would be handy if your right nostril were open so you could get out of bed and be on your way. Conversely, if you're going to bed at night, it would be handy if your left nostril were more open so you could settle down and go to sleep.
If it's time for you to get out of bed and you don't feel like it and you notice that your left nostril is dominant, you could do some things to easily switch so the right nostril were more open and then getting out of bed would be easier. You could lay on your left side and wait a bit or you could block your left nostril and make the right one do the work. Those tricks would help get the appropriate nostril in place so you can work with the flow rather than go against it.
Why this works is that the breath is connected to the brain. Duh. Any yoga practitioner knows this. However, we can use it to our advantage, making things go more smoothly. If it's mid-afternoon and you could really use a nap and notice that your left nostril is doing all the breathing but you're about to lead a class or do some driving, switching your nostrils up will help you to be in the right place at the right time.
Check it out. For more information you can find lots of details in Harish Johari's book on the subject. When I first read it some years ago it seemed like voodoo, but after some personal observation and other sources that shared the same idea, it started making more sense and being practical.