There you are; the day is clear and crisp. You smell wood smoke from a chimney. You inhale deeply. Old forgotten memories flood your mind, and a movie of past events begins to play. What happened? Who turned on the power that altered reality and your perceptions? It was your breath—the thing that connects the mind with the body.
As the breath enters the inner nasal cavity on the floor of the brain, which contains the olfactory nerve endings, it stimulates the first cranial nerve, resulting in vivid mental images. With continued deep breathing, soon even childhood traumas and other repressed emotions are released. Regular deep-breathing practice over time blows out the mental modifiers that distort conscious awareness.
Think of your breath as a gentle but powerful breeze, moving little puffy white thought clouds across an azure sky of pure consciousness. Soon your mental horizon is clear, calm, and peaceful. The whole world magically changes.
Medical researchers have confirmed the relationship between shallow breathing and mental disease. They have also observed that internal physical distortions of the nasal turbinates (the spiral-like structures of the nasal cavity) affect a person’s mental state. When the breathing isn’t full and deep, it’s an indication that muscular tension has been created by conscious or subconscious trauma. When we have unresolved issues, mental tension causes the breath to become shallow and tight. When the prana, or qi, is restricted, the flesh, being frozen memories, can’t thaw out and release that tension. Thus mental disease develops. An excellent presentation on breath and energy can be found in Swami Rama’s Yoga and Psychotherapy: The Evolution of Consciousness.
Consider that the tiny hair-like cilia growing out of the mucous membrane of the nose are delicate antennae that pick up electromagnetic vibrations. For some exceptionally healthy individuals whose mucous membranes and sinus cavities remain unclogged, the flow of rich negative-ion air energizes the glands in the brain in such a manner as to bring forth vivid impressions.
Interestingly, the ancient masters believed our sinus cavities were like radio transmitting and receiving stations. In one account reported in the magazine Digest, a couple of men in Czechoslovakia (now the Czech Republic) allegedly were able to place their hands on an unconnected loudspeaker while standing on a high mountaintop and pick up a local radio station. They claimed it was due to their deep breathing exercises.
We do know for certain that information travels around the globe by being bounced back and forth by satellites and towers, but can humans really pick up information with the physical body and brain alone? Well, why should that appear strange when birds, animals, and other creatures do it all the time? What are they picking up on?
Not long ago, I was filming a pair of eagles flying over a valley. It looked as if an aura of white light trailed behind them as they glided on the air currents. When I played back the film, sure enough, there was the light following them like a ribbon. I wondered, was the air electric? Then I recalled an old experiment in which the static electricity from a duck flapping its wings created a tension of six hundred volts. The great scientist Georges Lakhovsky states in his book The Secret of Life, “We know that the electrical potential of the terrestrial atmosphere increases with the height at a rate of 1 volt per cm. Thus at a height of a 1,000 meters there is a potential difference of 1,000,000 volts in relationship to the earth’s surface.” So the stronger the wind, the greater electrical potential the bird has.
The same principle applies to a dog, cat, or horse moving its tail. This auto-electrification becomes the animal’s antenna and information receiving set. Remember, an animal’s tail is connected to the nerve centers running up the spine to the brain. This is one way they are able to pick up information that appears impossible to know. I’ll give you an example: A friend left her dog with us while she was visiting elsewhere for sev eral weeks. On the day and hour of her return, her dog sat looking out the window down our driveway. Ten minutes before her arrival, the dog began excitedly and joyously wagging her tail and jumping up on the glass. How did she know?
What apparatus do we possess that allows us to pick up information? It would be ridiculous to say we have none, since all animals and insects possess these uncanny traits. While an animal can easily pick up electromagnetic vibrations by wagging its tail and identify what that electromagnetic signature is, we pick up vibrations in a similar manner with the delicate hairs in our nose. Naturally, the animal also does this. A bloodhound has been known to sense the presence of a dead body at the bottom of a lake. When we take a very deep breath, we all receive impressions and vivid memories the same way. When a dog is on track, you’ll notice how fast its tail wags. A great book to help with understanding this is Tuning In to Nature: Infrared Radiation and the Insect Communication System, by Philip Callahan, Ph.D.
All information is vibration before it becomes a brain chemical and is processed as pictures in our mind. However, it is the degree of prana, or qi, that we possess that uses the agency of breath to vitalize the process. That’s why the breath connects the mind with the body. We can activate our latent abilities by auto-electrification of the tiny hair-like cilia in the nasal turbinates of the nose. The electrical tension then stimulates the roof of the brain at the top of the nose. Just like that deep breath taken at the beginning of our discussion that brought back lucid memories, purposeful deep breathing will activate clear perceptions and impressions.
Please keep in mind that clear cognition and rational perception rely on a clean physical body. When the body is polluted, the blood pH becomes acidic, causing us to hyperventilate. Deliberately doing deep-breathing exercises will alkalize the body and clear the mind. At this point, you’ll be able to put disturbing thoughts and emotions to rest more easily. Your mental horizon will be clear, calm, and peaceful because you’ve used your breath to connect your mind with your body.
Peter Ragnar is a natural life scientist, modern-day Taoist wizard, and self-master par excellence. A martial arts practitioner for over fifty years, he is renowned for his teachings on optimal health and longevity. He is the author of twenty books, including The Art and Science of Physical Invincibility.