Science of Breath - A Practical Guide - Swami Rama, Rudolph Ballentine, MD & Swami Ajaya, MD
People laughed at the image of pretzel-legged yogis focusing on the tip of their noses- until Swami Rama walked into a laboratory and showed scientists what a yogi with control over his respiration can actually do. Before astonished researchers, he demonstrated perfect control over his heart rate and brain waves - control physiologists hadn't believed humans could possible achieve. In this book, Swami Rama shares some of the basic breathing techniques practiced by the Himalayan yogis so that we can begin immediately working with this powerful ancient science.
About the Authors:
One of the greatest masters from the Himalayas, Swami Rama is the founder of the Himalayan Institute. Born in India, he studied in both India and Europe and received his spiritual training in the Himalayan cave monasteries and in Tibet. This, his best known work, reveals the many facets of this singular adept and demonstrates his embodiment of the living tradition of the East.
Rudolph Ballentine, MD is a graduate of the Duke University School of Medicine, with specialty training in psychiatry. He establised the Center for Holistic Medicine in six cities, As its director for 25 years, he offered an integrative approach to treatment, using psychotherapy, homeopathy, Ayurveda, yoga, movement, and meditation. He also served as the president of the Himalayan Institute for 12 years and the director of its Combined Therapy Department for 18 years. Author of a number of books, including the classic Diet and Nutrition, he is now retired and lives in the Carolinas, where he practices and teaches permaculture and tantra.
Alan Hymes, MD, is a cardiovascular and thoracic surgeon. A pioneer in the field of breath research, he has studied the interrelationship between breathing patterns and cardiovascular disease.
From the introduction
The goal of Science of Breath is to present theoretical knowledge regarding the breath in such a way that it can be applied as a tool for personal growth. To this end, a series of practical exercises and techniques for systematically working with the breath and controlling the flow ofprana is described in detail. These serve toexpand breath awarenes, for as we observe the way in which we use our breath, various unconscious breathing ahbits are identified and replaced with more beneficial ones. Just as a child overcomes his clumsiness by becoming aware of his body and learning to walk, so does breath awareness gradually bring breathing under greater conscious control.
As the breath is the link between the body and mind, it can intervene in the activities of either level. With increased awareness and control of the subtle aspects of breathing, these interventions can affect deep physical and psychological changes. Science of Breath, then, opens up new avenues of being to the conscious mind, providing a powerful toll in the pursuit of truly holistic health and personal growth.