Nadis: Pranic Vitality Channels of the Physique
In a earlier article on Yoga Physiology, I wrote concerning the Pancha Kosha (the 5 Layers of Existence) and talked about the subject of Nadis or Vitality Channels. On this article, I’ll talk about Nadis in slightly extra element. Please keep in mind that is nonetheless a really fundamental overview written for these simply getting into the subject of yoga physiology and the follow of tantra.
In classical yoga physiology, nadis are energetic pathways which kind a matrix all through the human physique. These channels usually are not thought-about as bodily, measurable or dissectible buildings. They’re “that which underlies and sustains life throughout the physique.” In greater states of meditation and yoga follow the nadis could be perceived as flows of sunshine, warmth, shade, or sound.
Nadis are conduits for Prana (Qi or very important life power). The classical texts counsel there are someplace between 72,000 and seven.2 million nadis. These are large numbers and are extra philosophical than sensible. For our follow, we are going to concern ourselves with solely 5 main Nadis: Ida, Pingala, Arohan, Awarohan, and Sushuma. Almost about our practices, these channels are the principle conduits for power stream.
- Sushuma: the central channel, runs from the mooladhara chakra close to the perinium to the highest of the pinnacle and is taken into account the channel of stability.
- Ida Nadi: follows a path up the left aspect of the physique and represents the moon or cool power.
- Pingala Nadi: runs up the fitting aspect of the physique and represents the solar or scorching power.
- Arohan Nadi: travels the entrance of the physique between the mooladhara chakra and the highest of the pinnacle.
- Awarohan Nadi: travels the again of the physique between the highest of the pinnacle and the mooladhara on the base of the physique.
(These final two channels, the Arohan Nadi and Awarohan Nadi are primarily utilized in superior Hatha, Kriya and Tantric yoga practices, thus I’ll save the dialogue on these subjects for a later writing).
As for Ida and Pingala, the stream of those channels (moon and solar) represents the fixed ebb and stream of human existence. To see the significance of this idea we will look to the time period “Hatha” yoga.
The time period Hatha itself signifies Ida and Pingala in that the phrase “hatha” is manufactured from two root mantras: Ham representing solar power or Pingala; and Tham representing moon power or Ida. Thus, the foremost premise of Hatha Yoga is to discover a pure stability of those two forces throughout the physique.
Very similar to acupuncture in Chinese language Drugs, or using marma factors in Ayurveda, the Asanas (postures) utilized in classical Hatha Yoga are designed to enhance well being by liberating up blockages of prana and facilitate the free stream of important power all through the physique. Every other use is solely gymnastics.
As talked about, Pingala represents the photo voltaic polarity. It produces bodily vitality, dynamic exercise, and pressure. It’s the extroverting power and customarily dominates through the daylight.
Ida represents the lunar polarity. It’s chilly in nature and corresponds with the parasympathetic nervous system. Ida pertains to leisure, considering, and passive exercise. Ida is usually dominant through the night hours and sleep.
Ida and Pingala dominance is instantly associated to the stream of breath within the nostrils. At any given second one nostril is extra open than the opposite. When the stream of breath is stronger within the left nostril, it signifies that Ida is dominant. When the stream is stronger in the fitting nostril it signifies that Pingala is dominant. When you’re sleepy or drowsy, you might be more likely to discover the left nostril flows simpler. Conversely, if you end up bodily energetic, the fitting nostril will likely be extra energetic. Observing this phenomenon, the traditional yogis devised respiratory and meditation strategies to control the flows of power as a way to regulate the experiences of the pranic physique.