Thank you so much for the feedback from my story last week, about learning to live with both light and dark. You've shared your own similar stories with me and they are amazing - thank you. I love reading about your journies. Talking from the heart, being completely honest, and speaking your truth can be challenging at times, and I'm so appreciative of all your comments and your own stories. So this week, I wanted to share another story with you. This time, it's about something that a lot of yoga teachers and wellness-related practitioners might be able to relate to.
Busting the Myth that Yoga Teachers Don't Get Sick - Mondays with Maya
This is a story from another time I visited the Bahamas, many years ago. After having spent three idyllic weeks on the far-flung Cat Island in the Bahamas, my system felt revitalized by the sun, sea and healthy beach-style living. Imagine my surprise when the night before I was due to leave, I suddenly developed an extremely sore throat, blocked ears and nose.
I was in disbelief and denial. There was no way this could be happening to me in paradise. After such a wonderful and relaxing time, I would have to face the trip back home feeling shady and grey instead of carefree and full of light.
I thought it was the result of a mosquito bite or perhaps I had swallowed a rare tropical fly whilst sleeping or been bitten by some unusual jellyfish. How could my yogic immune system let me down like this? However irrational the thoughts, I went crazy convincing myself I did not deserve this, especially as I was booked the next day to teach a weekend workshop of Kundalini Yoga and the power of self-healing!
What a parody. The universe certainly has a sense of humour. So, I had two choices; to be angry and moan about it, to be miserable, to analyse and question or to accept it. But again, my mind was interfering. I am a yoga teacher, I can’t be ill. What would my students say? “She has the flu, yet she’s teaching self-healing! Why doesn’t she heal herself?”
Well, I soon realised the problem. My state of self-denial meant that I did not allow my body to acknowledge that I had a cold, therefore I could not cure it. The yoga wouldn’t work while I thought that there was nothing wrong with me. The moment I accepted my condition I was able to shift the cold in a matter of hours through yoga.
Yoga strengthens your immune system and especially Kundalini which will work with the body’s stored energy if we know how to use it. I have proven this to myself, countless times. I remember once during a dinner, I sneezed and my eyes started to get watery, my nose suddenly blocked, a cold was coming on at the speed of light. But I was present, I was “in the moment” and I accepted my condition for what it was. I slipped off to the bathroom and I started my “Immune System Booster Breath.”
Whilst sitting on the edge of the bathtub, I closed my eyes and concentrated on the third eye, located between the eyebrows. I raised the left elbow to just below the shoulder and positioned the left hand as if taking oath, touching the tip of the ring finger with the thumb and then closed my right nostril with the right index finger. I then started a steady and powerful breath of fire – a rapid equal inhale and exhale through the left nostril - just like sniffing.
After 5 minutes, I immediately felt better. The symptoms disappeared as quickly as they started. When I came back to the dinner table, everyone was dumbstruck. I was radiating again with not a sign of red eyes or sniffling nose. All clear.
This breath meditation strengthens the immune system by accessing the healing energy from the moon, mother of life, which creates an army of white blood cells in the body, ready to fight any viruses. That process helps the nervous and glandular system to replenish.
This lunar breath heals the emotional body by clearing all the unhealthy energies. It also helps remove sorrow, pain and depression. The moon breath energy is needed in the day to compensate for the predominant solar energy.
During this meditation, you may go through emotional shifts while your body rebalances. An emotional release is a healthy indication that things are shifting; stick with this process of transformation while your body regains natural balance.
Back to the crossroads of my dilemma; cancel the workshop or go ahead with it? As I’m not one to give up easily, I decided to power ahead and use this example as a perfect opportunity to demonstrate the transformation of performing alchemy, a process that requires us to recognize what’s consciously going on within. To accept our situation and agree to make the shift.
When I shared this with the group they all agreed that this was very beneficial especially as this brought to light the humble reality that we (yes, even your beloved yoga teachers!) are human beings and this is a common challenge we face on a day-to-day basis. But at the same time, we are powerful spiritual beings and capable of transformation. Only when we work together as ONE, when we balance our body, mind and spirit, anything is possible!
How to do the immune booster exercise:
- Close your right nostril with your right index finger
- Breathe short fast breaths only through the right nostril. This stimulates the nervous system and gives you a boost of energy.
- Do it for as long as you feel you can, from 1 minute, 3 or even 11!
More on boosting the immune system:
Let me know how you get on and if you've had any similar experiences.