One day last year, I had a particularly intense work out with my personal trainer. I’ve been working out all my life, but never before had I pushed myself so hard during a cardio workout like I did that day, and never before had I experienced what followed.
After the work out, my entire body was shaking and slightly vibrating, and all I could do was just sit on the floor to gain composure enough to eventually walk to my car.
Once I got in my car, I burst into tears. It wasn’t from physical pain, nor did I have any conscious reason to be sad, but for about 5 minutes I just sat there sobbing. Afterwards, I felt as if I had just shed a thousand pounds of emotional weight. I felt light, free and amazingly peaceful and beautiful. At the time I didn’t quite know what had happened, but I later realized that it was the increased flow of oxygen through my body that lead to the release of trapped emotions that had been buried deep within me. Allow me to explain.
The body, mind, soul, and emotions are all connected through our breath. Breath is the life force that pervades the body. If you’re unfamiliar with the term life force, it is simply the energy that gives something its vitality and strength. In this case, breath is what gives the body its vitality and strength, and since we are holistic beings, the body is connected to the emotions, mind, and soul, which also receive strength and energy from the breath.
Breath control is what women use to assist the body in delivering children, breath control is what nervous, emotionally enraged, or physically ill people use to bring calmness, breath control is what athletes use for peak performance, and breath control is what meditators use to transcend the realm of mind. The increase flow of oxygen throughout the body, blood, and tissues is why breath control is used as a technique to assist the body in relaxing or carrying out physically demanding tasks. It is also well known that massage therapy increases circulation, which carries more oxygen to the individual cells of the body, resulting in the healing of tension in muscles. Tension in the muscles can come from physical, psychological, or emotional stress.
Emotions have a powerful effect on our psyches, as well as our bodies. Emotions are expressed and released by moving through and out of our bodies. Our bodies naturally move and express when we experience great joy and laughter. Even great pain and anger causes us to take on various physical positions and vocal expressions. But when negative emotions are not expressed through our bodies and vocal chords, they become lodged in our tissues, which is how emotions can lead to physical illness and disease. However, when we move our bodies through stretching, exercising and practicing various breathing exercises, we release those emotions through the increased flow of oxygen, aka vital life force energy, aka the breath.
Every day, exercise your body and practice deep, slow, diaphragm breathing during your meditation, especially if you’re depressed or otherwise feeling emotionally disturbed. Moving your body daily, even if its just stretching to begin with, will help you to slowly release bottled up emotions, which is essential to your inner healing and spiritual awakening process. And if you really want a powerful release like what I experienced, exert yourself with an extremely intense cardio workout! After checking with your doctor first, of course. :-)
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-Peace, love and light,