HEALING WITH YOGA THERAPY – SEPTEMBER 3, 2022

BY JAYA GUPTA

CLICK ON  LINK

Regency paper Sep2022 – Vayana Mudra

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Healing with Yoga Therapy – July 8, 2022

By Jaya Gupta

Dear neighbors and friends, 

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Continuing “Pharmacy in Our Hands” articles, this month we are going to learn the sixth mudra called “Samana Mudra”. Samana vayu is the air that
circulates in the digestive organs stomach, liver, pancreas, intestines, etc. to improve digestion, assimilation of life energy and absorption of food.

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Yogis use this mudra to balance the flow of Samana vayu in the pelvic or Solar plexus region between the diaphragm and navel. That is why this mudra is also called Samana Vayu Mudra. According to Ayurveda, Samana vayu is connected in the
stomach to the metabolic fire called Jatharagni.

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This metabolic fire comprises the gastric juices that digest the food and separate them into nutrition and waste and are responsible for digestion of the food.

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Samana Vayu Mudra In Sanskrit, Samana means equilibrium, Vayu means air and Mudra means hand gesture. As the name implies, Samana Vayu Mudra is a yogic hand gesture that balances the energies of the air flow in the body. This mudra is also
called Balancing Air or Tri-dosha Nashak Mudra.

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According to Ayurveda, the thumb represents the fire element, the index finger represents the air element, the middle finger represents the space element, the ring finger represents the earth element, and the little finger represents the
water element. Samana Vayu Mudra balances these five elements by connecting the tips of all the fingers to the thumb.

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Digestive issues are caused by an imbalance in Samana vayu due to improper diet, excessive or irregular eating habits, and stressful life. These
habits weaken the metabolic digestive fire, which in turn results in poor absorption and assimilation of nutrition and leads to severe indigestion to poor
metabolism, many other digestive disorders and weight problems.

When and How Long to Do Samana Mudra

 Samana mudra can be practiced at any time of the day while sitting or lying down. Close your eyes and relax with a few deep breaths. Place the
hands on the knees with the palms facing upwards. Bring your awareness to the navel point to enhance the effect of the mudra. Connect the tips of
all your fingers and gently touch the tip of the thumb without using too much pressure and stay relaxed.

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 For the best results and to enhance yoga practice, mudras should be done with certain yoga poses or during a meditation sitting in a comfortable Cross-legged pose (Sukhasana), Half Lotus (Ardhapadmasana) or Full Lotus pose (Padmasana) with proper breathing.

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 This mudra can be performed two or three times a day, in the morning, afternoon and evening for 5-10 minutes or in one session of up to 30 minutes.

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Samana Vayu Mudra Benefits

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1. Improves the flow of prana to the stomach and intestines.
2. Reduces acidity, flatulence (gas), and minor digestive issues.
3. Balances all five elements and Tri-dosha (Ayurveda).
4. Strengthens liver function with long-term use.
5. Improves metabolism and increases appetite.
6. Enhances meditation by reducing digestive issues.

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Precautions
There are no particular downsides to these hand gestures. You can try them and discontinue if you see no benefits or feel that they are leading to any
other issues. These Mudras are not replacements for any medical therapy or ongoing treatment.
Please come and join us for mat yoga classes every Monday at 11:00 AM and for chair yoga classes every Wednesday at 10:30 AM in the clubhouse. May these mudras help you to heal whatever is ailing you.

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Until next month, take care, be well and enjoy. Namaste
Love – Jaya

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Healing with Yoga Therapy – July 2022 Issue
By Jaya Gupta

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Dear neighbors and friends,

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Today, we are continuing “Pharmacy in Our Hands” articles and going to learn the fifth mudra called “Udana Mudra”. It is a yogic hand gesture that is
believed to increase the flow of energy in the throat region, promoting spiritual growth, self-expression, communication, expression, and language. In Sanskrit, udana, means “joy” or “breathing upward” and mudra means “gesture” or “seal.”, which improves the connection between body and mind. Udana mudra is also called Udana Vayu Mudra because it affects the five segments (vayus) of
prana, or life force energy, that circulates throughout the body.

When the five segments of prana are in balance, the yogi is articulate, focused, intuitive, assertive and confident. This mudra is also called Hansi (swan in Sanskrit) mudra because this mudra looks like the face of a swan.

Udana Vayu Mudra

Udana Mudra is performed by connecting the tips of the index finger, middle finger, and ring finger with the tip of the thumb while keeping the little finger straight.

The thumb represents Fire element, which shows vigor and power to transform, the index finger represents the air element or Vayu. When you connect the tips of the index finger and thumb, it frees all the limitations of the earth element
and stabilizes. When you apply the pressure to your middle finger the ether or akasha element and air element will activate the throat region (the fifth chakra) in your body. Due to activation of the throat region, this mudra is very beneficial for throat-related health issues such as cough, sore throat, thyroid and parathyroid problems.

When and How Long to Do Udana Mudra

 Udana mudra can be practiced at any time while sitting, standing, walking, or traveling. But for the best results and to enhance yoga practice, mudras should be done with yoga poses or during meditation sitting in a comfortable cross-legged pose (Sukhasana), Half Lotus or Full Lotus pose (Padmasana) or Thunderbolt pose (Vajrasana) with
proper breathing.  This mudra can be performed twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening for 5-10 minutes in each session.

Benefits of Udana Vayu Mudra

As explained above, Udana vayu mudra has many therapeutic benefits for your brain, throat and respiratory organs:  Helps to regulate the blood flow to the brain and governs the intellectual
abilities- creativity, thinking and improves memory. Improves respiratory function and alleviates asthma.

By optimizing the brain and improving breathing, this mudra promotes prosperity, wisdom, joy and laughter in your life. Activates throat region, which improves voice, speech control and functioning of thyroid and parathyroid glands. A perfect mudra for actors, singers, and artists.  Upward movement of Udana vayu opens your heart and lets you embrace
yourself wholeheartedly. It promotes self-love and self-acceptance.

Please come and join us for mat yoga classes every Monday at 11:00 AM and for chair yoga classes every Wednesday at 10:30 AM in the clubhouse
ballroom 1. May these mudras help you to heal whatever is ailing you. Until next month, take care, be well and enjoy. Namaste
Love – Jaya

 

Healing with Yoga Therapy – May  2022 Issue

By Jaya Gupta

Dear neighbors and friends,

We are going to continue our topic “Mudra” or “Pharmacy in our hands”.

Mudra is an energy-body practice or subtle body training. It takes time to build up the sensitivity and feel the sensation to enjoy the powerful impact of these techniques and therefore we need to prepare our hands before we practice any mudra.

Hand Preparation: Rub the front and back of your hands together. Rub the front hard and feel the heat. This activates the nerve endings in the hands and also stimulates all the vital organs. Place your hands onto your lap, palms facing
the sky. Close the eyes and pay attention to any sensations tingling, pulsating or temperature change in your hands.

Today we are going to learn one of the simplest mudras called Vayu Mudra. In Sanskrit, vayu means air. The element of air, our breath, is one of the most crucial elements in the human system that keeps us alive. Vayu Mudra.

Vayu mudra is an air-reducing mudra that regulates and balances the air element within the body. It is practiced with both hands and can be done at any time, before or after dinner, while walking, standing or sitting. The imbalance in the air element happens due to improper digestion, lifestyle and accumulation of toxic waste in our body. This imbalance can cause many mental, emotional, and physical disorders like overthinking,  restlessness, anxiety, gastric disorders, endocrine system disorders, trembling of hands, muscular/joint pain, Parkinson’s disease and nervous degeneration. Vayu mudra should be practiced to remove this imbalance of air. It also relieves muscular and joint pains when practiced in combination with Prana mudra (next month).

We know that according to yoga and Ayurveda, the human body is made up of five natural elements: air, water, fire, earth and space. Each of our fingers represents one of the five elements. The thumb represents fire, while the index finger represents air. In this yoga mudra, the thumb presses upon the index finger, which means the energies of fire are used to purify the energies of air throughout the body.

 For the best results, sit in cross-legged, half or full Lotus or any other meditative pose. Use a cushion, to sit straight and comfortably for a longer duration.

 Vayu mudra is performed by touching the tip of your index finger at the base of the thumb and slightly pressing it with the thumb as shown in the picture. The remaining fingers stay straight.

 Gently close your eyes and focus on your breath. Try to calm your mind by doing Deep Breath slowly. Breathing stimulates Prana flow across the body.

 During the meditation, place your hands on both thighs. Maintain the steady Deep breath with OM or any other mantra to add spiritual awareness into your practice.

 Do Vayu mudra for a minimum of 15 minutes every day if facing any abovementioned discomforts. Though it has no side effects, it must be discontinued or done for less time as soon as the disease vanishes.

The only difference between the finger arrangement of Vayu mudra and Gyan Mudra is that in Vayu Mudra we touch the index finger at the base of the thumb and in Gyan mudra, we touch at the tip of the thumb.

Precautions
To get the most benefit of Vayu mudra, please take the following
precautions:

 Wear loose clothes while doing Vayu Mudra to ease the flow of
prana.
 Practice in an open and airy place.
 Turn off all electronic gadgets in close vicinity.
 Do not try to overbend your index finger and do not use too much pressure by the thumb.
 Keep the back straight to ease the flow of prana .

Benefits of Vayu Mudra

The regular practice of Vayu Mudra can cultivate an immense number of benefits. Heals Gastric Disorders: Vayu mudra is not only an exceptional mudra for weight loss and sleep but an excellent yoga mudra to heal gas problems like bloating and excessive gas in the stomach. As the thumb presses the index
finger, the created energy flow puts pressure on the stomach and that helps release the excessive gas and bloating. Heals Endocrine Disorders: The endocrine system is responsible for our
heart beats, bones, tissues, pregnancy, etc. A malfunctioning endocrine system can cause diabetes, thyroid problems, growth disorders, sexual disorders and hormone related issues. If it remains untreated, it transforms the body permanently. However, Vayu mudra directs the flow of subtle energy
toward the brain. This induces a response of reflexes, which activates hypothalamus in our brain and that stimulates the endocrine system to balance hormones and heal itself.

Builds Immunity: Catching colds, flu and getting infected easily are signs of a weak immune system. If not treated for a long time, a weak immune system can cause serious or even life-threatening conditions.

According to Ayurveda, the index finger has pressure points and when gently touched, they induce an energetic wave in the body that strengthens the immunity in the long run.

Heals Mental and Emotional Disorders: A lifestyle busy with
responsibilities and worries of home, office and society makes us restless. All the modern gadgets and comforts that money can buy may give the feeling of happiness, but real happiness is a state of mind that is inside us and we have to find it ourselves.

An imbalance in air causes overthinking, restlessness and anxiety because the element of air is connected to our thoughts and brain activity. Since the birth of yoga and Ayurveda, wise yogis have used Vayu mudra in meditation and pranayama (breathing practices) to balance the air element to bring inner peace, tranquility, happiness and to reach higher states of consciousness.

Our clubhouse is also open now and the in-person yoga classes have resumed. Please feel free to come and join us there.
May these mudras help you to heal whatever is ailing you. Until next month, take care, be well and enjoy. Namaste
Love – Jaya

 

HEALING WITH YOGA THERAPY – JAYA GUPTA –

Free Yoga classes with Jaya

Please come and join us for yoga designed for you. Every Monday Mat yoga from 11AM – 12:30PM and every Wednesday Chair yoga from 10:30-12:00. These classes are designed to learn and practice, what we need to keep ourselves flexible, strong, sharp memory and happy emotions. So we can align our body, mind and spirit and stay healthy, happy and peaceful as long as we live. Please send an Email to JayaGuota.Lotus@gmail.com  or call me at 732-853-5389for questions and to get added to our email list. Hope to see you in the clubhouse.

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Healing with Yoga Therapy 1-29-22

By Jaya Gupta

 

Dear neighbors and friends, 

          Hope you read the inspiring testimonies of your Regency friends in the January paper and have made a resolution to take good care of yourself physically, mentally, emotionally and psychologically. Testimonies of these dedicated students show how integrating and practicing the four parts of yoga and making them a way of life leads to good health and happiness. Since June 2020, you have read about yoga, yoga therapy, benefits of yoga, breathing practices (Pranayams) and meditations. For questions or to experience yoga, send me an email at JayaGupta.Lotus@gmail.com and join us on zoom or in private sessions with me until we are ready to start our classes back in the club house.

          The next step is to learn about Mudras to make our journey of yoga more powerful using our hands.        Mudra is a combination of two Sanskrit words “Mud” meaning bliss and “Dhra” meaning dissolving. It can be translated as “that dissolves duality and unites a deity and devotee together”. In simple words, mudra improves the connection between body and mind with much less effort needed than that in breathing practices and poses. Mudra brings stability to the mind and the body by connecting two energy points together like fingers and hands in “Namaste”.

          We are very familiar with many hand gestures or finger postures like

waving to say hello, thumbs up for a job well done, clapping to congratulate, etc.  The point is that we all know the power, energy and vibrancy of these gestures. The most common yoga mudra is “Anjali Mudra”. It means hello, bye or salutation and is accompanied by the expression “Namaste”.

          In yoga, the word Mudra means seal, gesture or posture. By practicing these mudras with intention and mindfulness, we are harnessing and promoting the flow of energy in the subtle body (that is what is most delicate or refined) in our journey within. They allow us to honor our physical body, emotional body and mental body and balance the elemental energies in us.

          Scientifically, Mudras help to access and influence the unconscious reflexes and primal, instinctive habit patterns that originate in the primitive area of the brain around the brain stem. They establish a subtle, non-intellectual energetic connection in nadis or meridians by connecting fingers, hands or pointing in different directions to direct energy and link specific channels to have different effects on the body, mind and prana (the vital life force energy). The hands are very important to the brain because there are an equal number of cortical tissues on our hands as in the rest of our body. By connecting our hands, breath, body and focus, we awaken our inner awareness and unify ourselves. Repetition of a Mudra can snap a practitioner out of bad habit patterns and establish a more refined consciousness.        

The science of mudras is a divine pharmacy in our hands. They are used for prevention as well as for the healing of diseases like arthritis, paralysis, cervical spondylitis and affects our metabolism without spending any money. They improve the function of lungs, affect all glands of the body and regulate their hormonal activity. They are safe, very convenient and easy to do while walking, talking, sitting or before sleeping.  

Benefits of Mudras:

  1. They regulate energy flow.
  2. Stimulate the brainpower and concentration.
  3. Improve the function of lungs.
  4. Calm and quiet the mind and relax the nervous system.
  5. Awake and balance the five elements of our body– earth, water, fire, air, and space.
  6. Develop immunity and purify nerves.
  7. They affect seven chakras, and through these chakras, they affect, body, mind and soul.
  8. Help to open the mind and heart.
  9. Benefit mental, physical and spiritual levels that no medicine can do.
  10. They are windows to spirituality.

 

Guidelines for Using Mudras:

  1. Mudras can be done in any pose, anywhere – sitting, walking, talking, watching TV, traveling or meditating. But to have the best results, you should sit and focus on only mudra.
  2. Normal duration of Mudra is at least 45 minutes per day or 15 minutes three times a day.
  3. Mudras should be done by both hands. Right hand mudra affects the left side of the body and vice versa.
  4. Mudras should be done with deep breathing or other yogic breaths.
  5. Mudras have wonderful effects when practiced along with suitable exercises, poses (yogasanas), breathing practices (pranayams) and proper food intake.

Starting next month, we will learn about these mudras one by one; how to do them and what are their benefits. Thank you so much for reading these articles, trying and practicing to reap the benefits. Until next month, take care, be well and stay safe. Namaste Love – Jaya

 

 

Healing with Yoga Therapy – November 2021

By Jaya Gupta

Dear neighbors and friends, 

Hope you all had wonderful holidays and enjoyed Diwali, Thanksgiving and Hanukkah. Since early last year, you have been reading, learning and enjoying these yoga articles. Hope you have been also practicing a few things from these articles and reaping their benefits.

I am waiting for the mask policy to be completely lifted to start the classes in the club house so that you get a chance to practice and experience yoga firsthand. As we know, yoga is not just a physical exercise but it is an experience. A yoga teacher brings energy and vibrations to the class for you to experience happiness and bliss inside you. Breathings to sharpen your brain, poses to become strong and flexible, meditation to align your mind, body and soul, and deep relaxation to rejuvenate are all parts of that experience.

This article is going to be the last one in the meditation series. You have learned different types of meditation to calm your mind, but if that doesn’t happen, don’t be discouraged or disappointed. Just keep trying and you will resonate with one. You do not experience all the benefits of meditation when doing the meditation; you do in what happens after that. Your positive vibes, your beautiful smile and your courage and strength to give love will open many hearts around you and bring positivity, smiles and lots of love back in your life. You will feel nature’s blessings and will live a blissful life.

Sometimes, due to “Ego, Ignorance or Arrogance”, a dis-ease or discomfort crawls in to our lives and makes it very hard to quiet our mind. In that situation, one has to take help from our other five senses to overcome the problem. Stay mindful of using these five senses whatever you do. Enjoy (eyes) the beauty of mother nature, watch and read what is good for your mind and soul, listen (ear) to the breeze, chirping of birds and animals around you, smell (nose) the aroma of your delicious cooking and fragrances and be creative and helpful with your hands (touch) and always speak (mouth) sweetly and softly to everyone. This month, we will talk about a very simple sound meditation. Th is SOUND meditation brings positive vibrations, calmness, and a sense of peace inside and uplifts you.

Sound meditation can be as simple as singing bhakti or devotional songs and mantras or prayers with good intentions and positive visualization. There are sacred mantras that are blessed and are given from a guru to his followers. Guru is a  Sanskrit  word composed of two words. Gu meaning "darkness" and ru meaning "that which dispels". Guru, “dispeller of darkness”, is the one who shows you the path of self-realization. He or she comes into your life when you are seeking and ready to receive. If you haven’t yet found a guru, don’t worry. You can take advantage of today’s internet world and can find lots of mantras, prayers and spiritual music on-line. Sing with them and open your heart. Smile and laugh. This will increase the feel-good hormone Dopamine and the happy hormone Serotonin.

You can sit and meditate or sing and dance to fill yourself with powerful positive vibrations to be happy and peaceful.

“Through the conscious mind you can send proper impressions into the subconscious mind to erase the old impressions or habits. The best way to develop your self-mastery is to start with small things and you can easily begin to build from there.”  – Swami Satchidananda 

There are many more deeper meditations which you can learn personally one on one, once you become a regular meditator and have a desire to go deeper into healing.

As we enter into the next year, you will see, read and be inspired by your neighbors and friend’s testimonies that how yoga has helped and shaped their lives.

If you would like to share, please feel free to send me an email at JayaGupta.Lotus@gmail.com with your experience and a picture of your favorite pose. May the rays of New year’s golden light bless all of us with peace, joy, lots of love, laughter, good health and happiness. Until then, take care, be well and stay safe. Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year

Love,

Jaya Gupta

“Healing Yoga with Jaya “

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On Zoom until the mask restriction is lifted in the Clubhouse

Mat Yoga Class, Monday Mornings, 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Chair Yoga Class, Wednesday Mornings, 10:30 AM – 12:00 Noon

Yoga, a discipline, can be learned at any age by anyone who is seeking to stay in good physical, mental and emotional health. In these classes you will learn how to integrate four very important components of yoga for the union and alignment of body, mind and spirit.

  1. Breathing (Pranayama) – to detox our bodies, to make our lungs healthier and stronger, to increase energy and vitality, to reduce stress, anxiety and blood pressure, and to let go of emotions we don’t need.

 

  1. Meditation – to make our minds stronger and relaxed to stop the chatter in our minds, to increase focus and improve memory to keep away Alzheimer and Dementia.

 

  1. Poses – to make our physical bodies flexible, strong and toned. Modified poses for those, who need special care to overcome back pain, arthritis, Fibromyalgia, etc.

 

  1. Deep Relaxation – to absorb benefits of all the above, to learn to relax and to heal by deep REM sleep. It helps to strengthen our immune system, balances our nervous system and helps in chronic pain, headaches, migraines, sleeping disorders, Insomnia and more.

 

The benefits of the poses alone are enormous, but true health benefits can only be achieved by combining all four components. Many articles about yoga have been published in Regency Reporter since July 2020 under the title “Healing with Yoga Therapy by Jaya Gupta”. To get the Zoom link for the yoga classes and to be added to my email list contact me via email at JayaGupta.lotus@gmail.com.

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Healing with Yoga Therapy -September 2021

By Jaya Gupta

Dear neighbors and friends, 

September is here and the summer is almost over. Days are getting cooler and comfortable to walk and to breathe fresh air to rejuvenate. Grandkids have gone home and life has returned to the normal routine. Hope you had found time to try a few of the breathing and meditation techniques and experienced the calm mind and the relaxed body. This is a reminder to sinus sufferers to start doing Bee breath to beat allergies of the Fall season and eventually overcome their sinus, headaches, migraines and insomnia problems.

         This month we will talk about a very simple, yet a powerful Divine Light meditation that takes about 10 minutes. In the beginning, it is better to do this meditation as a guided meditation. The soothing voice of the guide will help you to keep interrupting thoughts away and if you get interrupted by a thought, you can always come back to the voice.  Please feel free to send me an email on JayaGupta.Lotus@gmail.com and join our Zoom yoga classes to experience yogic breathing, guided meditation, poses and deep relaxation. If you are going to try it on your own, please read the meditation script a few times before doing it.

By now, you must have created a quiet place in your home to meditate.  Light a candle or diya to focus on or visualize the divine light of Sun, shining on you and the rays going inside you through your Crown chakra (the soft spot on your head). Sit in a cross-legged or any comfortable position. Rest your hands on your knees, palms facing upwards, index finger rising to join with the tip of the thumb (Chin Mudra ).

Meditation Script:

  • Looking steadily at the flame, chant AUM three times. Close your eyes and take yourself to your sacred place or happy place.
  • Take a deep breath and imagine the flame, between your eyebrows or feel the warmth and light of the divine light burning brightly inside you or bring the divine light in through your crown chakra. Whenever you lose the light, take another deep breath and bring it in through the soft spot on your head. This is your light and it’s always there for you.
  • Let your head be filled with the divine light so that all the negative thoughts disappear forever and your head be filled with wisdom, intelligence, knowledge, positive attitude, good thoughts, wonderful memories and a good memory to hold all that.
  • Let the light fill your eyes. So, you can see good in every human being, see good in adverse conditions and be able to see the silver lining in all events of your lives.
  • Let the light fill your ears. So, you can hear the love, laughter and happiness of your loved ones, family and friends all around you.
  • Let the light fill your nose. So, you can smell the good aroma of your food and good fragrances in mother nature.
  • Now the light comes down and reaches your mouth. So, you can speak sweetly and softly to everyone and will not speak or utter a word of lie.
  • Keeping your eyes closed; imagine the bright light coming down and filling your shoulders, making them strong so you can carry on your responsibilities to the best of your abilities.
  • Feel the glow of light, warming your hands and palms. Let your actions always be good and right and your hands be strong so you can help people in need.
  • Now the light comes down and reaches your heart. Imagine it removing all heartaches, sadness and darkness from all corners, filling your entire heart with unconditional love, kindness, compassion, acceptance and forgiveness because there is no place for darkness to hide.
  • Now imagine the light growing wider and wider, filling your entire body, making every part and organ in your body strong and healthy.
  • Now feel the warmth and light reaching out to your legs, making them strong so you can walk on the path of righteousness. Your entire body is glowing in this light and you are blessed in this golden light.
  • Now imagine the light growing wider and wider. Take a deep breath and fill the light in your home. Fill every nook and corner of your home with this light and create the home you want, filled with love, laughter and happiness of your loved ones, family and your friends.
  • Now the light is getting wider and wider, blessing everything and everyone in its path. Your neighborhood, blessing all your neighbors and friends. Blessing your city, your state, your country and beyond the seven seas to the entire world. The entire universe is glowing in this light and we all have become one. We are blessed in this golden light with good health and happiness. And there is no one who can stop this light from shining.
  • Now, we are going to request this divine light to teach us how-to live-in peace and harmony with love and respect.
    Enjoy the warmth and the energy of this divine light and take it into your body where you need it most to heal, let the warmth and energy heal you. Sit silently with your eyes closed and enjoy the peace and healing within you. Enjoy it for some time. When you are ready to complete, bring your hands together, rub them and bless yourself.
    Express your gratitude and gently open your eyes without any judgment.

Complete your meditation with little prayer. “Loka Samasta Sukhenu bhavantu”, (May the entire universe be filled with peace, joy, love and light).  AUM shanti shanti shanti.

Next month, we will learn another meditation technique before connecting with the elements inside us. Until then take care, be well and stay safe.

Love – Jaya

 

Healing with Yoga Therapy – July 2021

By Jaya Gupta

Dear neighbors and friends, 

Spring came and left before we even realized it was here. We barely had a chance to enjoy nice walks in the cool mornings and evenings before we plunged into the hot summer. I hope that you have been practicing the breathing techniques you have learned so far because they will help you to calm your mind and prepare you for meditation.

Are you inspired after reading the benefits of meditation and are ready to try? Sometimes experiencing the limitless potential and the timeless power of the unknown universe feels scarier than the frantic life style and all frustrations of this known world.  But once you know the truth that we all are made of energy, and connecting with that higher cosmic energy and light, you can align your mind, body and soul with the highest potential. By channeling that energy, you can experience the stillness and peace within, heal yourself and create a blissful, healthy and happy life with a purpose.  

Meditation is a practice of that involves bringing your awareness inwards. The focus of your inward attention could be on a mantra (Om) with or without deep breath, a vision, an emotion, an area of your body that needs healing, etc. There is no right or wrong way to meditate. Finding a few minutes for yourself to recenter, focus or turn within to experience the calmness and wisdom can be as close as your breath.

Getting Ready to Meditate:

          You don’t need to go to the Himalayas, a retreat or even to sit in a full lotus position to meditate.  All you need to do is to find a quiet place in your home, away from all distractions. You may sit comfortably in front of:

  • An east facing window to enjoy the morning Sun and soak in some Vitamin D,
  • A west facing window to enjoy the evening meditation, or
  • An altar with a candle, a lamp or any object to focus on.

          If you wish to meditate sitting in a chair, cover your chair with a meditation mat or a sheet. Do not place your feet on the bare floor.  Instead, place your bare feet on a cushion or cloth. If you sit on a mat on the floor, initially make yourself comfortable sitting on a cushion against the wall until you become comfortable sitting in the cross-legged position.

If you wish, you can cover yourself with a shawl. The shawl and the mat will absorb the energy you create. This energy helps you to center and focus faster as you grow into deeper meditations.

Meditation Techniques:

          You are now ready to meditate. The first simple steps of meditation are:

  1. Focus on your Breath: Sit with your eyes partially closed and focus on your breath. Inhale through your nose slowly and deeply (deep breath). Exhale through your nose all the way. Continue repeating. The goal here is to clear your mind of all thoughts. After focusing on your breath for a few minutes, you should notice that there will be no thoughts.
  1. Focus on an Object: Place an object (e.g., a beautiful picture of a flower, an idol or a candle) in front of you. Keep breathing while you focus on the object for a few minutes. Then gently close your eyes. If it’s a candle, focus on the bottom center, the non-flickering part of the flame. Keep breathing and focus with your “mind’s eye.”
  1. Mantra Meditation: Choose a mantra like “Om” (also spelled as “Aum”), which encompasses the present and the future and means “the omnipresent” or “the first sound from the beginning of time.” Om is a good mantra and a cosmic sound, whose vibrations are in the atmosphere all the time.

Take a deep breath and bring those vibrations inwards. As you exhale, bring your awareness to navel area, the heart and to your head. Keep breathing and repeating over and over, focusing on these areas.

The vibrations you are creating, go out through the soft spot in your head and mix with the vibrations of Om in the atmosphere and comes back through the soft spot on your head and hit your Pituitary and Pineal glands, which start to vibrate. This vibration hits your Vagus nerve, which sends signal to all the nerves allowing your body to calm down. After a few minutes, there will be no thoughts in your head.

          A 2018 study, published in the Asian Journal of Psychiatry, noted that om chanting is associated with an experience of relaxation, specifically citing beneficial changes in the autonomic nervous system (which regulates heart rate, blood pressure, metabolism, and other internal functions) and deactivation of limbic brain regions (an area that controls emotion, memories, and arousal). Researchers also observed brain activity during the om chanting, similar to that created by vagus nerve stimulation, which is used to treat depression and epilepsy. 

Another 2018 study found that chanting om loudly for 30 minutes significantly increased theta brain waves, signaling deep relaxation. A similar 2019 study showed that it changes delta waves too, which are the same waves experienced when in a deep, dreamless sleep.

Over time, you will find your own personal focus and style of meditation that resonates with you. The objective is to find a path that gives you comfort and offers an opening that allows you to find deeper meaning in life. So, whether you focus on your breath, a prayer, an object or a particular part of your body to heal, try to find a few minutes every day in your busy life to connect with this cosmic energy and light, to create a blissful, healthy and happy life.

Please send me an email at jayagupta.lotus@gmail.com and join us for guided meditation classes via Zoom in the comfort of your own home on Mondays at 11:00 a.m. and/or Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m.

Next month we will build on these skills and learn other meditations.  Thanks, and until next month, take care, be well and stay safe.

Love – Jaya

Healing with Yoga Therapy – June 2021

By Jaya Gupta

 

Dear neighbors and friends, 

 

Spring is here, trees are on full blooms and the weather is perfect for walking. I hope that sinus sufferers have been practicing their Bee breath and have found some relief by doing that. Don’t give up, keep doing the Bee breath and the next season would be better than this one or the problem may disappear completely. As promised, this month we will talk about meditation. It has been my savior since Covid tsunami hit India. The first question is “what is meditation.”

There is so much published research work on this topic that most of us would probably answer that meditation calms our mind and makes us happy. The truth is that it does much more than that. Meditation is not a state of happiness, as the happiness and unhappiness are only modifications of the mind. Meditation leads you beyond all modifications of the mind.

To truly understand meditation, one needs to experience it. We all have sometime experienced meditative state, when focusing while playing, cooking our holiday meals or studying. To experience real meditation, one needs to have a calm mind and controlled attention to go deep into the utter solitude.

I am listing below benefits of meditation from many research works, hoping that it would inspire you to try it.

Benefits of Meditation:

1. Mental Health Benefits: Creates super mind by increasing grey matter concentration in areas of the brain involved in learning and memory. Long-term meditation enhances the ability to generate gamma waves in the brain.

  • Increases mental Strength and focus
  • Increase memory retention and recall
  • Better cognitive thinking and creativity
  • Better information Processing
  • Better Decision making and problem solving
  • Increases awareness of your unconscious mind

2. Performance Benefits: Creates healthier bodies due to improve immune system . Meditators have a thicker prefrontal cortex and right anterior insula. It might offset the loss of cognitive ability with old age.

  • Improves focus, attention, and ability to work under stress
  • Improves information processing and decision-making
  • Helps ignore distraction and manage ADHD
  • Helps allocate limited brain resources
  • Prevents you from falling in the trap of multitasking too often
  • Improves your mood and psychological well-being
  • Makes you stronger against pain and relieves pain better than morphine

 

  1. Physical Benefits: If you don’t like medication, try meditation. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
  • Improves energy level, breathing and heart rate
  • Reduce blood pressure
  • Increases longevity
  • Decreases heart and brain problems
  • Helps prevent asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, Fibromyalgia and inflammatory bowel disease on cellular-level and manage psoriasis
  • Lessons menopausal and premenstrual problems
  • Affects genes that control stress and immunity
  • Reduces risk of Alzheimer’s and premature death
  1. Emotional Benefits: Loving-kindness meditation improves empathy and positive relationships.
  • Lessons stress, worry, anxiety, fear, guilt, loneliness and depression
  • Enhances self-esteem and self acceptance
  • Improves resilience against pain and adversity
  • Increases optimism, relaxation and awareness
  • Prevents emotional eating, smoking
  • Develops positive connections
  • Improves mood and emotional intelligence
  1. Spiritual Benefits: It brings peace of mind, positive feelings, and helps you connect to a deeper sense of purpose in your life. Spirituality unites oneself with God or higher Self.

 

Please send me an email on jayagupta.lotus@gmail.com and join us in Zoom classes in the comfort of your home on Mondays at 11:00 a.m. and/or Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m.

Next month we will talk about different ways to calm our mind to experience it because meditation is not a technique but “It is pure intention”. Thanks, and until next month, take care, be well and stay safe. Love – Jaya

 

Healing with Yoga Therapy – March 2021
By Jaya Gupta

Dear neighbors and friends, 

 Hope all is well with you and many of you have got your first shot of the Covid19 vaccine. Regardless of whether you have got the vaccine or not, stay safe and keep well. Spring will be here pretty soon and with that come pollen allergy pains and sinus problems. I hope that you have read about Yogic Deep Breathing and Alternate Nostril Breathing in February Regency Reporter as well as in Ron Post’s Emailer, have seen the video and are practicing them. These are the two most widely used Yogic breaths. Deep breathing will be an essential part of every yogic breath you will learn. To reap 100% benefit of any yogic breath it is important to do Deep breathing properly.

As promised, this month we will learn Bhramari or Humming Bee breath. This breath is very powerful not only to help with sinus, but also alleviates headaches, migraines, stress, anger, insomnia and sleeping disorders, calms nerves, reduces blood pressure, etc. It speeds up the healing of body tissues and can be practiced after many surgeries.However, check with your physician or an experienced therapist before starting the practice. This breath also strengthens and improves the voice and eliminates throat ailments. After clearing your nose and then practicing three rounds of this breath in the morning and before going to bed in the night will keep you happy for many hours and give you a good night sleep. One can overcome his/her sinus problems after practicing this breath for a few seasons. Yogic breaths are pretty powerful and have very subtle impact on your body. So please be careful and never overdo them. Again, I will try to explain this breath, but there is more to the breath than I can put on paper. So please send me an email on Jayagupta.lotus@gmail.com and join us for Zoom classes on Mondays at 11:00 and/or Wednesdays at 10:30.

Things to remember before practicing any yogic breath:

1. Avoid breathing practice when you have cold or when you are sick.

2. Always first clean your nose with warm water and take all the gunk out. If you have sinus issues, you can use neti pot.

3. Brush your teeth and wash your face or take shower. Do not take shower immediately after the practice.

4. Always breath in and out through the nose unless instructed otherwise, learn and practice first in the guidance of a yoga teacher.

5. The best times to practice are early mornings and after the sunset, and on empty stomach.

6. Sit in a comfortable meditative posture on a mat or in a chair with spine, neck and head erect but relaxed.

7. Most important is to Avoid Strain. Listen to your body and stop. Start slowly with a few breaths and increase very slowly over weeks, months and years. Rest between the breaths and never to overdo.

8. Sensation of inching, tingling, heat or cold, lightness or heaviness may occur due to purification or release of toxins.

9. Smokers should start very slow with just a few breaths and STOP smoking slowly and completely. Humming Bee Breath or Bhramari: In this breath you will be making the sound of a humming bumble bee from the upper part of your throat. The vibration will vibrate your larynx, moving up cleansing your three sinus cavities, vibrating Pituitary gland (a pea-sized body, which is the major endocrine gland body attached to the base of the brain) and Pineal gland (a pea-sized conical mass of tissue behind the third ventricle of the brain) and eventually vibrating your Vagus nerve. The vibration of the Vagus nerve sends signal to all nerves to calm down and that lowers stress and blood pressure.

First, we have to learn how to extend the length of our exhale from the nose by not losing air from the other four openings in our body (eyes, mouth, ears, and anus). We need to keep these four openings closed by sitting comfortably in meditative pose or in a chair, and only breathing through our nose. Close your eyes and mouth. Raise the arms sideways, bend your elbows bringing the hands to the ear. Press the flap of the ears with your thumb and place the other four fingers on top of the head on four sinus pressure points on both sides as shown in the picture.

1. Exhale, take a deep inhale and make a sound of humming bumble bee from upper part of your throat as you exhale.

2. Do three times, bring your hands down and rest for a few seconds.

3. Repeat two more rounds and bring your hands down in your lap. Place your hands on top of each other and thumbs touching together. There will be no thoughts in your head and you will experience the p

eace with in you. You are now ready for your meditation.
If you do not feel the pleasant effect of this breath, please join our zoom session or learn under the guidance of a yoga instructor. Keep practicing and I hope that you can overcome many issues mentioned above or keep sinus problems at the bay.

Next month, I will answer some of the questions asked. If you have any, please send me an email.

Until then, take care, be well

and stay safe. Love – Jaya

IMG_3488.MOV

Healing with Yoga Therapy – March 2021
By Jaya Gupta

.
Dear neighbors and friends, 

Hope that you all have got your vaccination done and are ready to meet again in person as soon as the club house  opens. Spring will be here soon; flowers will bloom and that will bring pollens. I hope that sinus sufferers have been practicing their Bee breath.

As promised, here are the answers to questions that I have received through email. I will try my best to explain it here but there is much more to breathing than what I can put on paper. So please send me an email on Jayagupta.lotus@gmail.com and join us in Zoom classes in the comfort of your home on Monday at 11:00 AM and/or Wednesday at 10:30 AM to understand and do the practice with me.

Ron Post has been kind enough to put my videos in the emailer for you to watch and learn what is presented here.

Question 1: What if I am doing Deep breathing wrong?

1A: If you are not doing Deep breathing correctly, nothing will go wrong physically except that you will not have full benefit of this breath. If you are not reaching below your navel after inhale, you are probably doing shallow breath only.

1B: You can start doing Deep breathing incorrectly if your breath has reversed. It can sometimes happen if one is under stress. A reversed breath means that when you are exhaling, your abs and tummy inflate and when you are inhaling, they deflate. To correct the breath and overcome this problem, please practice as explained below in 1C.

1C: Alternate way of doing Deep breath in the beginning until you become good at it: Lie down on your back and place both hands below the navel (watch the video). Inhale, take a deep breath and feel your abs rising, Exhale and press your abs with both hands until all the air is out. Visualize the movement of the breath from abs to nose when exhaling and nose to abs when inhaling.

Question 2: What will happen if I am doing Alternate Nostril breathing wrong? Nothing significant will happen if you are breathing in and out without going from one nostril to the other. Your blood pressure will not go down and your nerves will not calm down; you will be just balancing the temperature of your body. In yoga, the right side of our body is called “hot, sun or male body” and the left side of our body is called “cool, moon or female body”. An easy way to remember is that our heart is on the left and female are supposed to be more nurturing. When our body temperature is normal 98.6 F, we are in balance and feel good. By breathing only from one side, one can increase or decrease body’s temperature as yogis do on high altitudes to keep themselves warm or in hot summer to cool themselves down. In hot weather, you can cool yourself down in 30 seconds to a minute by closing your right nostril and breathing only from the left nostril. If your hands and feet are getting very cold, you can close the left nostril and breath from the right to warm yourself up. Please watch the video for full explanation.

Next month, we will learn the cooling breath to help us cool down in hot weather and to get rid of “Hot flashes” if you still get them. Until then, take care, be well and stay safe. Love – Jaya

TO VIEW THE VIDEO JUST CLICK ON THE FOLLOWING LINK:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1a5t4LFnxGNTOOd0gR9WpIGTfMMcb9B6w/view

Healing with Yoga Therapy
By Jaya Gupta

Dear neighbors and friends, 

.
 Hope all is well with you and many of you have got your first shot of the Covid19 vaccine. Regardless of whether you have got
the vaccine or not, stay safe and keep well. Spring will be here pretty soon and with that come pollen allergy pains and sinus
problems. I hope that you have read about Yogic Deep Breathing and Alternate Nostril Breathing in February Regency Reporter
as well as in Ron Post’s Emailer, have seen the video and are practicing them. These are the two most widely used Yogic
breaths. Deep breathing will be an essential part of every yogic breath you will learn. To reap 100% benefit of any yogic breath
it is important to do Deep breathing properly.

.
As promised, this month we will learn Bhramari or Humming Bee breath. This breath is very powerful not only to help
with sinus, but also alleviates headaches, migraines, stress, anger, insomnia and sleeping disorders, calms nerves,
reduces blood pressure, etc. It speeds up the healing of body tissues and can be practiced after many surgeries.
However, check with your physician or an experienced therapist before starting the practice. This breath also
strengthens and improves the voice and eliminates throat ailments. After clearing your nose and then practicing three
rounds of this breath in the morning and before going to bed in the night will keep you happy for many hours and give you a
good night sleep. One can overcome his/her sinus problems after practicing this breath for a few seasons. Yogic breaths are
pretty powerful and have very subtle impact on your body. So please be careful and never overdo them. Again, I will try to
explain this breath, but there is more to the breath than I can put on paper. So please send me an email on
Jayagupta.lotus@gmail.com and join us for Zoom classes on Mondays at 11:00 and/or Wednesdays at 10:30.

.
Things to remember before practicing any yogic breath:

.
1. Avoid breathing practice when you have cold or when you are sick.
2. Always first clean your nose with warm water and take all the gunk out. If you have sinus issues, you can use neti
pot.
3. Brush your teeth and wash your face or take shower. Do not take shower immediately after the practice.
4. Always breath in and out through the nose unless instructed otherwise, learn and practice first in the guidance of a
yoga teacher.
5. The best times to practice are early mornings and after the sunset, and on empty stomach.
6. Sit in a comfortable meditative posture on a mat or in a chair with spine, neck and head erect but relaxed.
7. Most important is to Avoid Strain. Listen to your body and stop. Start slowly with a few breaths and increase very
slowly over weeks, months and years. Rest between the breaths and never to overdo.
8. Sensation of inching, tingling, heat or cold, lightness or heaviness may occur due to purification or release of toxins.
9. Smokers should start very slow with just a few breaths and STOP smoking slowly and completely.

.
Humming Bee Breath or Bhramari: In this breath you will be making the sound of a humming bumble bee from the upper
part of your throat. The vibration will vibrate your larynx, moving up cleansing your three sinus cavities, vibrating Pituitary
gland (a pea-sized body, which is the major endocrine gland body attached to the base of the brain) and Pineal gland (a pea-
sized conical mass of tissue behind the third ventricle of the brain) and eventually vibrating your Vagus nerve. The vibration of
the Vagus nerve sends signal to all nerves to calm down and that lowers stress and blood pressure.

.
First, we have to learn how to extend the length of our exhale from the nose by not losing air from the other four openings in our body (eyes, mouth, ears, and anus). We need to keep these four openings closed by sitting comfortably in meditative pose or in a chair, and only breathing through our nose. Close your eyes and mouth. Raise the arms sideways, bend your elbows bringing
the hands to the ear. Press the flap of the ears with your thumb and place the other four fingers on top of the head on four sinus
pressure points on both sides as shown in the picture.

.

1. Exhale, take a deep inhale and make a sound of humming bumble bee from upper part of your throat as you exhale.

.
2. Do three times, bring your hands down and rest for a few seconds.

.

3. Repeat two more rounds and bring your hands down in your lap. Place your hands on top of each other and thumbs
touching together. There will be no thoughts in your head and you will experience the peace with in you. You are now
ready for your meditation.

.
If you do not feel the pleasant effect of this breath, please join our zoom session or learn under the guidance of a yoga
instructor. Keep practicing and I hope that you can overcome many issues mentioned above or keep sinus problems at the bay.
Next month, I will answer some of the questions asked. If you have any, please send me an email. Until then, take care, be well
and stay safe. Love – Jaya

IMG_3488.MOV

.
DEEP BREATHING VIDEO – BY JAYA GUPTA – REGENCY RESIDENT
.
One of our residents (Jaya Gupta) has provided Regency with a link to her showing everyone about deep breathing.
.
Watch and learn a few yogic breaths or Pranayama to help in headaches, migraines, insomnia, sleeping disorders, lowering one’s blood pressure, clearing mental fog, etc. A few minutes of proper breathing every day and a few changes to take care of your sinus area will improve your life from the above issues as well as from low energy and lethargic body. Please read the entire article “Healing with Yoga Therapy by Jaya Gupta”  in the  February issue of Regency Reporter before starting the following practices. The March issue of Regency Reporter will talk about sinus breath.  

.

Deep Breath: It is also called abdominal breath, three-part breath (filling three parts of your lungs) or sedative breath and is a good one to fall asleep. 

.

Alternate Nostril Breathing (Anuloma-Viloma or Calming Breath): As the name indicates, in this breath you are alternatively breathing from both nostrils and the durations of inhalation and exhalation are controlled. It is a good breath for mental clarity, stress reduction by calming your entire nervous system and to lower your blood pressure.  DO NOT STRAIN. Enjoy… love – Jaya

.
This is a link to a Deep Breathing Video deep breath.MOV..
.