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Demystifying Prana + How to Enhance Your Life Force Energy

Sahara Rose
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If you’ve ever been to a yoga class, you’ve probably heard the word “Prana” at some point. But what does this word really mean, and how does it apply to your yoga practice and life overall?
In this article, we will discuss the meaning of prana, how you can become more attuned to it, and what you can do to increase prana, both in your mind and body.
The word “Prana” is Sanskrit and can be split into two: ‘pra’ means “to exist before” and ‘ana’ means “an atom.” Therefore, prana is “that which exists before an atom.” It is fascinating to note that the ancient Indian Vedas were familiar with atoms thousands of years before they were discovered by modern-day microscopes.
Yet prana is not unique to yoga or the Vedas. In fact, prana exists in many cultures. The Chinese call it “chi” or “qi,” which is where qi-gong comes from.
If you’re interested in learning more about the Chinese Qi and how it applies to your body, your wellbeing, and healing practices like Acupuncture, read this article.
The Japanese call it “ki,” the Maori in Australia call it “mana” and the Greeks called it “pneuma.” Even the Bible had a word for prana, which is “holy spirit.” These are all different terms for the same thing we feel universally, regardless of cultural or religious background: energy.
Prana is something we cannot measure, we cannot hold, we cannot taste. It can only be felt by the more subtle layers of our ethereal body.
Prana is also often referred to (particularly in yoga) as life force energy. It exists in all places and all things. Things that are full of prana are full of life – take fresh fruit for example. Life force energy is literally beaming across the atoms of the fruit.

Prana is something we cannot measure, we cannot hold, we cannot taste. It can only be felt by the more subtle layers of our ethereal body.

But even non-tangible things like a room of people deep in meditation is full of prana – it’s about the vibration that the room emits.


Energy + Energetic Vibrations

You may have heard the terms “low vibration” and “high vibration” used to describe people, places or things. This saying refers to energetic life force. Prana is the vibration between atoms. High vibrational things are full of prana, emitting love, joy and unity. Low vibrational things lack such vitality and operate on a level of fear, jealousy and/or anger.
Some people have a high vibration, meaning that they emit positive energy. Just being around them puts you in a good mood because they radiate like the sun.
Other people have a low vibration. This doesn’t necessarily mean they have said or done something wrong, but the aura they exude is not of life force. Your subconscious picks up on something low-vibration about this person, whether it is deeper layers of fear, jealousy or anger. These people are more like energetic vampires because they suck your energy, rather than give it out.

Energy is Everywhere!

Just as people can have high or low vibrations, so can physical locations! Some places are “high vibrational.” Your mere presence in this place fills you up with life force and inspiration. Such places include forests, beaches, meditation centers, yoga studios and/or temples.
Other places are “low vibrational.” You may feel stressed, exhausted or depressed just by being there. These places can be anywhere from your workplace to your school to your bank, depending on your relationship with such places.
Meals can also be high or low vibrational. A “high-vibe” meal is full of active, living nutrients, freshly picked from the soil. It hasn’t been overly cooked and is comprised of plants from the Earth.
A “low-vibe” meal is one that is dead and lifeless. Microwave dinners, chips, candy and sodas are all low-vibrating foods because they have no pranic life force. This is why we feel worse after consuming this type of food (if we can call it food at all).
So how can we increase prana in our lives?

Here are 8 quick tips to introduce and increase prana in all aspects of your life:


1. Check in with Your Doshas

Make sure your Doshas stay balanced. Doshas are Ayurvedic mind-body types. If you don’t know yours, you can take my quiz here (http://eatfeelfresh.com).
If your Vata is too high, you may experience anxiety, bloating and constipation. If your Pitta is too high, you may experience acidity, impatience, and overheating. If your Kapha is too high, you may experience weight gain, mucus, and depression.
These energies are constantly shifting, so make sure you change your dietary, yoga and lifestyle practice with the season.
Suggested read: Everything You Need to Know about Ayurveda

2. Meditation in Any Form

Find your way of meditating that works for you. Whether it’s Pranayama breathing or Shamanic Shaking, have some sort of ritual you do for yourself everyday to allow yourself to come back into your center.
Those with a more masculine energy do well with sitting in one spot, while those with a more feminine energy require a more dynamic meditation, so find what works for you.

3. Create a Personal Sanctuary

We take on the energy of the places we spend our time in. Make sure your living space is inspiring, comfortable and healing. Do not overcrowd your space, because a crowded room will lead to a crowded mind. Clean your space regularly and add art, colors, and other decor that speaks to and inspires your heart.
Suggested read: 3 Things to Consider When Creating Your Own Sacred Space

4. Aromatherapy

Use an essential oil diffuser in your space, whether that’s on your desk at work, or on your nightstand at home. We are constantly breathing, and therefore we subconsciously take in (and are affected by) the smells around us.
Purchase a small diffuser and add several droplets of your favorite essential oils to increase the prana of the room. For calming your mind and body, we recommend lavender. For stimulating conscious breathing, try eucalyptus. And for an uplifting boost, use peppermint.

5. Find Your Tribe

Surround yourself with positive people on their path. Let go of people who bring you down or do not see your value. You are a combination of the five people you spend your time with. Make them inspirational.

6. Get Back to Nature

Go outside. Spending too much time indoors will increase our Kapha energy, making us heavy, lethargic and depressed. Take a stroll for 10 minutes outside to get some Vitamin Sun.

7. Move Your Body

A stagnant body is a stagnant mind. Move and stretch your body to keep your pranic energy in flow. Yoga is the perfect practice of movement, because you can choose what you need from your practice that day, whether it’s an upbeat flow, a short restorative sequence, or even just busting out a quick Sun Salutation.

8. Eat for Your Health

Eat right for your mind-body type. A diet that works for your friend may not be the best for you. Know the right foods to eat for your unique physiology so you can stay light, grounded and nourished.
The only way to increase prana is through self-awareness. The more aware you are of your own body, the more attuned you will be of its needs. Do not feed your body foods that throw it off balance. Don’t take it to places you do not feel nurtured.
You will become your own healer only by following your own intuition.

What begins as purposeful effort will become innate intuition.

I recommend focusing on just one tip at a time so you don’t overwhelm yourself. Once you have integrated one tip into your routine, move on to the next tip. Don’t be self-critical. Health requires patience and maintenance. You will notice that the more prana you create, the more you will naturally be filled with life force energy.
What begins as purposeful effort will become innate intuition.

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Sahara Rose

Sahara Rose is an Ayurvedic Practitioner, Sports Nutritionist and Holistic Health Coach, as well as upcoming author of The Idiot’s Guide to Ayurveda. She is passionate about bridging Eastern and Western health philosophies and leads a 12-Week Program on incorporating both into our lives. Discover your unique Ayurvedic Mind-Body type on her free quiz at eatfeelfresh.com and follow her on Instagram @EatFeelFresh.


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