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The Nature of Anger. Nadi Sodhana Pranayama

Dernière mise à jour : 20 mars 2020

Anger is natural, but even though the consequences could be devastating, as very often the others don't see what stay as a reason behind our behavior but see and hear just what we say, and of course we can't really blame them about that. In the end there is no excuse to be rude or to harm someone. The anger leads to hate, aggression. Sometimes could be the resource of energy to help us attained our goals, but what a price is this to live our life, feeling angry every day. Seneca thought the anger is a madness. A Buddhist story teaches us every time we let the anger take over us, we leave scars in someone's soul.

Anger triggers the fight-or-flight response, which floods the body with stress hormones, and the long-term physical effects of uncontrolled anger include anxiety, depression, high blood pressure, headache, heart attack, and decreased immune response.

Nadi Sodhana Pranayama (Alternate Nostril Breathing) is a great breathing technique to help calm the nervous system and release anger tension in us. Nadis are energy channels in the body, through them the Prana (life energy) is passing, Sodhana means purifying/cleansing. The goal of this pranayama is purification of the nerves, which brings us physical and emotional benefits.

How to practice it :

Sit comfortably, keep the back straight and rigid, spine lengthen.

Activate Jalandhara bandha - chin rest in the notch between the collar-bones just above the breast-bone. Bend the index and middle fingers of the right arm towards the palm.

"Place the right thumb on the right side of the nose just below the nasal bone, the ring and the little fingers on the left side of the nose just below the nasal bone. Press the ring and the little fingers to block the left side of the nose completely." (B.K.S. Iyengar)

Empty the lungs through the right nostril. Inhale slowly and deeply, controlling the flow, fill in the lungs. Block the right nostril with the thumb and exhale completely trough the left one, in a slow and controlled manner. Inhale slowly and deeply trough the same nostril (the left one). Block and exhale trough the right one, this complete one cycle.

Keep going in the same rhythm, after exhaling trough the right nostril, inhale trough the right, then exhale trough the left, inhale trough the left, exhale trough the right.

Do all the inhalation and exhalation slowly and control the flow of air in and out, the time of the both should be equal (if you inhale for 5 seconds, exhale as well for 5 seconds). Start with as many cycles as comfortable (averagely 10 it's a good starting number of repetitions).

Next step is to double the time of exhalation (5 sec inhale, 10 sec exhale). After mastering the process in a steady and long therm practice, you can start holding the breath for few second after the inhalation, in a proportion 1 to 2 (if you inhale for 4 sec, hold for 8 sec, exhale 8 sec).

After mastering this process, giving yourself enough time to be completely comfortable with it, you can try to hold the breath after the exhalation in a proportion with the inhalation 2 :1.

Example: inhale 4 sec, hold 8 sec, exhale 8 sec, hold 2 sec.

You can increase the time keeping the same ratio: 1:2:2:1/2.

Furthermore you can try an advanced, classic pranayama ratio of 1:4:2:1.

People with high blood pressure or heart problems, should Not practice retention of the breath. For specific health issues get consultation prior start practicing.


The blood receives a large supply of oxygen, makes us feel refresh and the nerves are calmed and purified. The mind becomes still and lucid, the anger dissolves and leaves our body and mind with each exhalation. And simply like that we just feel better and everyone around us also. Give a try - 10 minutes per day and see in few weeks how you feel and even if you miss some days don't give up, it still counts on the good side.

Enjoy and be happy !

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