agniDevanāgarī: अग्नि Translation: fire, sacrificial fire; the god of fire; the fire of the stomach, digestive faculty, gastric fluid Opposite words:candra, amṛtam Related concepts:sūrya, pitta, tejas, prāṇa, ojas, sahasrāra, haṭha, āyurveda
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“For me, still to this day, one of the simplest, direct and most succinct definitions on the purpose of Āsana within the processes and practices of Haṭha Yoga, is the definition offered in the Haṭha Pradīpikā Chapter One verse 17.
It is a definition valid for any situation, discussion or presentation, or as a response to questions from any background, or level of interest around why we practice Āsana.
It can also be a springboard to linking physiological qualities, such as the relationship of Agni, to the energetic qualities of health and lightness of limb. Or investigation of the commentary by Brahmānada, as that explores psychological qualities such as the relationship of the Guṇa, Rajas, to mental qualities such as steadiness.”
– Paul Harvey on Haṭha Pradīpikā Chapter One verse 17
“Another simple posture is Adho Mukha Śvan Āsana.
the next step is to try them in some sitting postures such as Mahā Mudrā.
These Bandha can also be done in the headstand.
It is easy to do Bandha in this position because the lifting,
Uḍḍīyana Bandha, and holding up, Mūla Bandha,
of Apāna to the flame is almost automatic
because now the Apāna is above the flame.
If we can do the three Bandha in these postures,
we are ready to introduce them in our Prāṇāyāma.”
– TKV Desikachar ‘The Concept, Preparation and Techniques of Bandha’ Religiousness in Yoga Chapter Fourteen Page 197
“The great yogin Yājñavalkhya said that the constant and intensive practice of Prāṇāyāma brought Prāṇa and Agni together,
and gradually the obstacle at the base of the Suṣumnā would be totally dissolved.
He gave this block the name ‘Kuṇḍali’ meaning coiled or ‘Kuṇḍalinī’ meaning ‘rolled up’ in other texts.
Kuṇḍalinī represents that which blocks access to the central energetic channel.
When this obstacle is eliminated, Prāṇa penetrates and begins to rise in the central channel.
This is the most precise description we have of the process.
This is also the most clear and coherent.”
– ‘Concerning the Cakra’ by TKV Desikachar
“Bṛṃhaṇa Kriyā and Laṅghana Kriyā as expansive and contractive activities are two potentials actualised through the Breath and Āsana.
Within the practice of Āsana, Mudrā and Prāṇāyāma they are actualised through an understanding of the primary principles that inform Haṭha Yoga and Āyurveda.
The alchemical process underpinning this understanding is the relationship between the two primary principles of Prāṇa and Agni in order to influence Haṭha Yoga concepts such as Prāṇa, Apāna, Nāḍī, Cakra, Agni and Kuṇḍalinī.
In terms of Bṛṃhaṇa Kriyā and Laṅghana Kriyā, the viniyoga of Bṛṃhaṇa affects a dispersion of Agni from the core to the periphery and the viniyoga of Laṅghana affects a withdrawal of Agni from the periphery to the core.
Understanding the application of this particular process facilitates access, through the Vīna Daṇḍa (spine), Prāṇa and Agni, to energising, cleansing and aligning potentials in the practice of Āsana, Mudrā and Prāṇāyāma.”
– Paul’s Short & Longer Yoga Practice Theory Articles – Collected & Collated
“In Practicing the Tri Bandha we engage with Haṭha teachings:
In that, the inhale takes the Agni towards the Mūlādhāra.
This effect on Agni increases with the Antar Kumbhaka,
as the Antar Kumbhaka helps to intensify the fire.
Following this process in bringing the Agni down,
the exhale takes the Mūlādhāra towards the Agni.
Thus the exhale draws the Apāna towards the Agni,
plus adding Uḍḍīyana Bandha holds the Apāna up.
This is the link with the effect on the Kuṇḍalinī,
though in terms of practice, very hard to get.
Here also, the coming down period is important.
For example, do not eat just after, though you feel hungry.
Uḍḍīyana Bandha is a heating process and Madhura Rasa,
such as sweet rice cooked with milk is initially recommended.”
– 108 Mudrā Practice Pointers
“Prāṇāyāma is regarded as a Tapas,
a Kriyā, which cleanses the Nāḍī,
It is a Sādhana which sharpens Agni
and helps to dissolve obstacles, thus
making the mind fit for attention.”
– 108 Yoga Practice Pointers
“Bṛṃhaṇa Kriyā and Laṅghana Kriyā, as
expansive and contractive activities, are two
potentials explored through Āsana and the Breath.
Alongside the practice of Āsana, Mudrā and Prāṇāyāma,
they are actualised through a theoretical understanding of
the primary principles that inform Haṭha Yoga and Āyurveda.
The alchemical process underpinning this understanding
is the relationship between the two primary principles of
Prāṇa and Agni in order to influence Haṭha Yoga concepts such
as Prāṇa, Apāna, Sūrya, Candra, Nāḍī, Cakra and Kuṇḍalinī.
In terms of Bṛṃhaṇa Kriyā and Laṅghana Kriyā, the
Viniyoga of Bṛṃhaṇa effects a dispersion of Agni from
the core to the periphery and the Viniyoga of Laṅghana
effects a concentration of Agni from the periphery to the core.
Integrating the application of these two specific processes
facilitates access, through the Merudaṇḍa, Prāṇa and Agni,
to either energising or cleansing potentials, or as collaborative
outcomes within the practice of Āsana, Mudrā and Prāṇāyāma.”
– 108 Yoga Practice Pointers
– Prāṇāyāma Theory Questions:
“Compare the techniques and functions
and applications for Śītalī and Sītkārī.
Especially with regard to their effects on Agni.”
To Download or View this Question as a PDF Study Sheet
– Yoga Practice Planning and Theory Questions – Collected & Collated
Links to Related Posts:
- A sample Parivṛtti and Paścimatāna Themed Group Practice
- Laṅghana Kriyā has two functional dimensions…
- Studying, Practicing and Learning the Tri Bandha involves Theory, Techniques and Cautions…
- Viniyoga Vignette 5 – Introducing Uḍḍīyana Bandha within an Āsana practice
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