|'Bee Closeup on Peach Blossoms' by Tammy Puntti|
If you have read my post dedicated for Women's Day titled Embracing Womanhood, I did a brief overview on a breathing technique called brahmari or humming bee breath. I thought I should do a follow up by discussing further on the correct technique and benefits. In Sanskrit terms, the word brahmari itself means bee. The vibration from the sound produced during this practise also imitates the sound of bees.
Difficulty level: Beginners.
Who should do it?
ANYONE except people suffering from severe ear/ENT(ear,nose,throat) infection.
When to do it?
The best time to practise is late at night or early in the morning before sunrise because there are fewer external noises. Practising at these times awakens your psychic sensitivity. However, bramari may be
practised at any time of the day to relieve mental tension. For beginners who are starting out this practise, 5 to 10 rounds are sufficient. In cases of extreme agitation or anxiety, to assist the healing process, practise for up to 15 to 20 minutes.
How to do it?
There are two ways to do this. Refer to the pictures below to choose your preferred way of sitting.
2. Close your eyes and relax the body.
3. Raise your arms and use your thumb to gently press on your ear flap.
4. Inhale deeply through your nose.
5. As you exhale, make a steady humming sound like a bee. Feel the vibration at your throat. The humming should be smooth, even and continuous for the duration of the exhalation.
6. At the hand of exhalation, without removing your hands, focus on the sound that you hear within you.
7. When you are ready, continue with another round the same way.
What are the benefits?
Brahmari relieves stress and cerebral tension. Also helps in alleviating anger, anxiety and insomnia in order to increase the healing capacity of the body. It strengthens and improves the voice. Bhramari induces a meditative state by harmonizing the mind and directing the awareness inward. The vibration of the humming sound creates a soothing effect on the mind and nervous system.
Reference: 'Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha' by Swami Satyananda Saraswati