“Kapala”— meaning “skull” “Bhati”— meaning “light”
Before we get into the techniques of this breath I want to give a quick back ground on Pranayama, the fourth limb in the eight fold path of yoga.
Prana is known as the subtlest unit of energy. The root of Prana is an, which means to breath. So combining these gives you the fact that your breath is the most subtle energy source in your body. Even though it is the subtlest, it is a powerful source for you, because it is something that you can control and manipulate easily in order to achieve certain things. If you are familiar with martial arts, you may have heard of chi, which is the Chinese version of Prana. The second part of the word pranayama is yama, aka restraints, which are the first limb of Yoga when looking at the Eightfold path (Ahimsa/Non-violence, Satya/Truthfulness, Brahmachary/Moderation, Asteya/Non-stealing, and Aparigraha/ Non-greed).
Control/harness the energy though breath.
Prana Pathway: left channel-ida, right channel-pingala, central channel-sushumna… the entire thing is called the nadis. Starting at the base of the spine it flows out the nostrils.
The ultimate goal of pranayama, is to calm the mind and prepare it for spiritual concentration. Pranayama, if practiced regularly, can bring a striking feeling of plenitude, reducing anxieties, excitement and restlessness. Pranayama can help improve concentration and focused prayer/reflection/contemplation which leads to a more positive and healthier lifestyle.
-Sitting in Hero pose, or easy pose, start your diaphragmatic breathing for about a minute, just to get the rhythm going, then take short, explosive exhales and slightly longer, passive inhales.
-Exhales are generated by powerful contractions of the lower belly (between the pubis and navel), which push air out of the lungs. Inhales are responses to the release of this contraction, which sucks air back into the lungs. So focus on your exhale.
-Keep a tissue nearby, because this breathing will clear you out even if you thought you had nothing to clear.
Here are some of the benefits of Breath of Fire:
It helps to cleanse the lungs, sinuses, and respiratory system
Strengthens the diaphragm and abdominal muscles
Brings heat and awareness to belly
Increases your body’s oxygen supply, which stimulates and energizes the brain while preparing it for meditation and work that requires high focus