The following four exercises circulate energy from the breath along certain routes in the body. They use either the traditional energy mapping system(called the chakras) or two channels known from Chinese medicine. None of the exercises need you to believe any dogma or belief systems of any religious or spiritual system or tradition. They use pathways in the human energy field , which has its own anatomy, just like the physical body.
These exercises will train a deeper awareness of the body and its energy system. They are based on a perception of how vitality moves in the human energy system during conditions of deeper balance and more refined states of consciousness. They can help balance personality and also prepare the body to accumulate and transform energy released from meditation practice. They can also be used to train a focused mid. These four exercises will form a comprehensive energy balancing program.
The Pineal-Hara Exercise
The purpose of this exercise is coördinate an energy center in the middle of the head, known as the pineal center with a center in the middle of the lower belly, known as Hara in Japanese. These centers reflect the balance between intuition and instinct, sense and spontaneity.
The exercise starts with an in-breath, where energy and awareness are being moved from the center of the head down through the body’s vertical axis(also known as the center line) to the hara in the lower belly, a few inches below the navel but deep inside the body. With the out-breath energy and awareness are being moved in the opposite direction, from the hara back to the center of the head. The exercise starts over again with the next in-breath. Breathe in a normal, relaxed fashion and practice for about five minutes.
Variation: If you have a sense of pressure in the head, too many thoughts or a sense of too much energy moving upward, you should remain at the lower center on the outbreath. As you breathe in move down from the center of the head to the Hara and breathe out in the whole lower belly. Then start a new round of breathing at the pineal.
The Crown-Root Exercise
This exercise coördinates the crown and the root centers.The purpose of this exercise is to relate your deeper values as well as ethical and spiritual insights (symbolised by the crown) to the material and social aspects of your actual life ( symbolised by the root). It reveals how these values and insights find ( or don’t find ) an expression in real life and helps to build a bridge between these two radical dimensions of human existence.
Variation: If you have a sense of pressure in the head, too many thoughts or a sense of too much energy moving upward, you should remain at the lower center on the outbreath. As you breathe in move down from the center of the crown to the root center and breathe out in the perineum and down towards the legs Then start a new round of breathing at the crown.
The Yin-Yang Circulation
This exercise uses two acupuncture meridians, known as Du Mai, on the back side of the body, and Ren Mai, on the front. Back means Yang and front means Yin, hence the name Yin-Yang circulation. The purpose of the exercise is to balance the polarity and to circulate and accumulate vitality in these channels. It helps your energy system gather and sustain surplus energy, which is necessary for both maximum health and inner development.
The pathway of the exercise runs just behind the skin in a complete circle through the vertical midline of the body. Starting at the tailbone, at the bottom of the spine, with an in-breath you move energy and awareness upward, over the spine to the back of the neck, back of the head, to the crown of the head, and then on to the forehead, down the nose to the front teeth. The energy movement of the in-breath ends here. Then with the out-breath you move energy and awareness from a point just below the lower lip down the front of the neck, over the chest bone, solar plexus, and the belly, through the navel, and farther down over the genitals to the perineum between the genitals and the anus. This is one whole circulation. Start the next one with an in-breath from the tailbone. See if you can regulate the length of the breadth so you can complete the two parts of the circulation in one breathing cycle. Practise the exercise for about five minutes.
The Essence-Heart Exercise
About twelve inches above the crown one can contact a spiritual reference point, known as the essence point. It is in the periphery of what sometimes is known as the mental aura. The essence point is thought to be a gateway to another dimension, one where the inborn higher seeds or potential of human beings can be accessed. The heart center is in the middle of the chest. It is the place in the physical body where our true identity has a natural focus point. Combining the essence point with the heart enables the manifestation of inborn potentials or talents.
The exercise starts at the essence point. With the in-breath you move energy and awareness down to the top of the head, through the head and neck to the middle of the chest, where the heart center is located. With the out-breath you move energy and awareness out through the front of the chest and farther out into the space in front of the body. Then you go back to the essence point and start again. Do the exercise for about five minutes.