BY BONITA CAROL
Over the past few years I have had the opportunity to study with a doctor of Ayurvedic medicine, Vaidya Rama Kant Mishra. Ayurveda is a 5,000-year-old Indian system of health care, a comprehensive body of knowledgefor the prevention and cure of disease. Vaidya Mishra, whose family lineage includes authors of some of the ancient ayurvedic textbooks that are still used today, is called a Prana Vaidya. Of the four categories of physicians, Prana Vaidya is considered the most knowledgeable and perceptive.
What is Prana?
Prana is found everywhere but can’t be seen—it is the lifeforce or breath in all living things. Prana enters the body through the top of the head as well as through food, water, air, and breath. Two ofits primary components are soma and agni. Soma is cooling, lubricating, and nurturing; it provides the body with stability. Agni is hot, fiery, and transformational.
Our physical environment exposes us to many elements that increase agniand deplete soma in the body. As Vaidya Mishra explains, by constant exposure to electrical and electromagnetic machinery such as cell phones, TV, computers, air conditioning, and microwave ovens, we are burning soma—the sustaining and soothing aspect of prana—right out of our bodies and our physical environment, too.
In addition to this, we are eating food that no longer has much pranain it (i.e., fast food and processed food laden with chemicals). Since we take in the vital life force through food, water, air, and our physical environment, it is no wonder that people suffer from headaches, emotional stress, chronic fatigue, inflammation, skin problems, fibromyalgia, and digestive disorders, all of which stem from too much heat, or agni, in the body and lack of soma.
Prana and pH
In ayurvedic terms, low pH will indicate high agni, and high pH will indicate more soma. Both cases are imbalances that need to be corrected. In ancient times, dried leaves were used to test saliva, urine, and blood to measure pH. One leaf would be very acidic by nature and one would bevery alkaline.
In preliminary research done by Vaidya Mishra on 30 patients, special one-hour treatments were able to raise pH levels from 5.5 to 7.5, indicating increased prana. These treatments worked by stimulating marma points onthe body. “Marma” in Sanskrit means “hidden or secret.” Amarma point is a juncture where tissues, muscles, ligaments, bones, or joints meet. It’s a point where spirit meets matter. Marmas can’t be seen but they can be touched and felt.
How Marma Points Boost Prana
The body is crisscrossed with meridians like irrigation channels, closed interconnecting systems through which prana flows in the body. Marma points are like switches where the prana is boosted or decreased. These marma points or subtle switches may become damaged, blocked, or too open. When there is some physical or mental problem, it may take a simple stimulation of the proper marma point to open the blocked prana.
Marma points are very powerful. I recommend getting guidance from a knowledgeable technician to stimulate these points.
Stimulating the marma point to balance prana and the pH in a preciseway can help with stress, pain, headaches, sleep, and digestive disorders. Some physicians are even having success with more serious problems such as autism and fibromyalgia.
Marma massage is also used in spas to provide a natural facelift. By stimulating certain marma points on the face, which connects prana to the whole body, the face begins to look more radiant, and after time, wrinkles start to diminish.
How to Increase Prana
In addition to massaging the marma points to stimulate prana, here area few suggestions to further increase soma.
• Get plenty of rest at night.
• Walk in the moonlight before sleep.
• Eat somagenic foods such as sweet pears, fruits, summer squashes, whole organic warm milk. If you’re vegetarian, make sure you get enough vitamin B6 in your diet (paneer, a fresh cheese made from cow’s milk, is a good source of B6).
• Avoid spending more than one hour getting lost in cyberspace. Surfing the web in excess is disconnecting and soma burning.
• Go out into a natural environment every day. Soma predominates in lakes, forests, and in the fresh clean air.
• Enjoy activities that support the heart marma, the seat of the emotions, by surrounding yourself with positive and uplifting people.
• Allow your senses to take in entertainment that opens the heart.Avoid watching movies or reading books that create fear and disturbance.
• Exercise each day, but don’t overdo it. Overexercising burns soma.
For more information on marma therapy, contact Bonita Carol at (641) 472-2804 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.