Saturday, 12 November 2011


From the time we were born with a cry, to the time we die (and make others cry!), we have been breathing to survive. From birth to death, we must breathe to stay alive. We must also eat to survive and of course, we must rest to survive.
So it would be reasonable to say that if we breathe right, eat right and rest right, our body should function right!
I would also be correct in saying that besides the hereditary factors (defective genes etc. which account for 40% of our health problems), it is our LIFESTYLE that brings upon us sicknesses like diabetes, high BP, rash etc.
What good is it if we toil away all of our youthful years to amass wealth only to realize that you do not have the health to enjoy it in your later years?
So let’s reason this out !
Breathing Right: It is said that a normal human being uses only 10-15% of his lung capacity to breathe and yet survive. It is also said that the more the breathing cycles per minute (1 cycle= 1 inhalation + 1 exhalation), the shorter the life span of a person. If compared to a dog, it does 70 cycles and lives only 14 years, whereas some reptiles do just 2-3 cycles and live hundreds of years!
Those who are spiritual stop being super-spiritual and listen to what yoga teaches us about breathing right and start following the age-old Indian science of breathing right! There is nothing wrong with yoga if you keep yourself rooted in the Word Of God and do it as plain exercise!
Eating Right: It is a known fact that everyone loves to eat tasty food irrespective of what harm it may do to the vital ‘balances’ within the body. It may be that over the years, we may have overlooked the many 'checks and balances' that our dietary gurus may have given us. We are all out of alignment and seriously need a ‘resetting’ of our eating habits. What good is it for you to hold a steering wheel made of solid gold when your car is so much out of alignment that it doesn’t even roll!
We need food to create energy to do work but have you ever been able to do any work after a heavy meal? Think carefully about how much meat you eat too. It puts the digestive system under undue stress and before long you may end up with problems of the colon. Your system may also need some deep cleansing (know that the once-in-a-while laxative that you take is not enough!). A simple check; look inside some of your coffee cups in the office. Are there some stains seen at the bottom of the cup that has been in use for a long time? Was it being washed everyday with soap? Then why the stains? …It needed someone to do a deep cleansing of the cup. It is the same with our bodies. We need a deep cleansing to be done to get rid of the years of garbage that has accumulated in our systems!
Let’s start reading up on the foods we eat and be conscious of the bad effects!
Rest: Most people sleep a good sleep but still it does not mean that they are rested! If you go to sleep with worries in you head, it is almost certain that you will either not sleep and therefore you will not rest your body enough to recuperate from the stress of the day! 'Stress kills' is a well known cliche that everyone knows. It is a regular sermon from your family doctor, i'm sure!
Thanks to the early understanding of rest through meditation that I was introduced to, through yoga!
The deepest form of rest can be achieved through meditation. Reaching a state of ‘thoughtlessness’ is meditation. It means that not only your brain activity gets the rest but your mind is rejuvenated too!
Think of it this way: You are standing on the banks of a river and looking at the river flow by. You are just watching it flow by and are not aware of how cold or hot the water is, nor are you aware of the types of life that exists within the water (Maybe piranha! J), or the currents under the suface. But all that does not affect you UNTIL you decide to dive in! So it is with our thoughts. As you start the process of meditation, initially, ‘thoughts’ (like the river) will appear in your mind but are you deciding only to ‘watch’ or are you ‘diving into the river’ (i.e. being part of the thoughts that come)? Only if you decide to dive into your thoughts while meditating, you will allow the meditation to be of nil effect! If you are able to just ‘watch’ the thoughts come and go and not focus on them, you will one day reach a state of ‘thoughtlessness’.
Meditation is truly a ‘mind cleanser’! If you do not know how to meditate this way, try getting help. It is easy to say that you are meditating on the word of God when you don’t even know what meditation is!
So friends, as I write this article, I myself am reminded of all the wonderful things I learnt from practicing yoga and meditation years back! Along the way, I’d stopped the practice of meditation and I realized that in my quest for God through scripture, I first need to clean up 'my vessel'(body) before I invite God to occupy it. WE WILL ALL NEED GRACE  (of God) TO ENTER INTO A PROPER CLEANSING of this earthly vessel, so that we can all do what St. Paul tells us to do, through:
I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a
living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of
worship. (Romans 12:1)

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