Lord Shri Krishna in the 4th chapter of The Bhagwad Gita introduces different Yogas to attain salvation or one-ness with God. He talks of Pranayama as a very useful way of moving forward on this path of self-attainment and salvation for an aspirant.
अपाने जुह्वति प्राणं प्राणेऽपानं तथापरे |
प्राणापानगती रुद्ध्वा प्राणायामपरायणा: ||
अपरे नियताहारा: प्राणान्प्राणेषु जुह्वति |
सर्वेऽप्येते यज्ञविदो यज्ञक्षपितकल्मषा: ||
Aspirants offer the outgoing breath and incoming breath as a sacrifice. While some consistently practice pranayama i.e., restrain the incoming-outgoing, speed and energy of breaths.
Some aspirants curtail their food intake as a sacrifice.
All these knowers of sacrifice are cleansed of their impurities as a result of such performance.
Lord Krishna, strongly propagates Pranayama-the 4th practice of Ashtanga yoga as a powerful way to cleanse the impurities of mind, body and soul.
This forms the pre-requisite for the aspirant to be able to embark & proceed on his journey towards the eternal salvation of his existence.
He says, the way all impurities in material world get burnt by fire and become shuddha by fire, similarly the oxidation process of controlled breath cleanses a human of his material impurities.
A piece of gold is melted to clean it of any possible impurities & makes it easy to mould it into beautiful jewellery, similarly pranayama unveils the impurities of mind like the Pancha Kleshas and make it easy to become a soul worth being presented to God to become one with him.
Even in the modern times, we can keep our body free from diseases and prevent the ill effects of our life styles through Pranayama, and make ourselves ever ready on physical front to take over the challenges of new world living.
It is observed that Pranayama increases the mental willpower and alertness of an individual which form the back bone of his struggle to achieve his dreams and vision.
On emotional front, Pranayama makes one more emotionally intelligent and determined to rise above his problems, limitations and fly high to achieve his destination.
Yogeshwar Lord Krishna profoundly lays these principle of sacrificing the breath i.e., following controlled breathing for a human being’s wellness and betterment in all areas of life. This science stands true for ages and centuries now, however situations have changed!
We strive to control everything around us, and get upset & disappointed when we fail to do so! Lord Krishna says, control your breath, over-come your limitations and situations are then bound to follow your will & wish.
Let us follow this simple practice of Pranayama and make ourselves a better person day by day.
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