“If we believe that the mind is simply a finer part of the body, and that mind acts upon the body, then it stands to reason that the body must react upon the mind. If the body is sick, the mind becomes sick also. If the body is healthy, the mind remains healthy and strong. When one is angry, the mind becomes disturbed. Similarly when the mind is disturbed, the body also becomes disturbed. With the majority of mankind the mind is greatly under the control of the body, their mind being very little developed.“From ‘Raja Yoga’ by Swami Vivekananda
We never give a thought to this idea that our mind and body are a different forms of the same energy. Ever since our childhood, we are conditioned to treat our mind as something totally different from the body.
In the information age the mind is given too much importance while the body suffers because of our ignorance. For example, we tend to be attracted more towards tasty food and less towards healthy food. We eat food because our mind is hungry for its taste, even though the body dislikes it tremendously.
Your body posture right now is a physical and geometrical representation of your state of mind.
Most of us have this default habit of sitting in a slouch posture. And we are not aware how harmful it is! Your spine is the gateway for ‘pranic energy’ to move in and out through breath. When the spine is not straight, this energy cannot flow effortlessly. You cannot even take deep breaths in such a posture.
On the other hand, when you are sitting with a straight back, you are radiating feelings of confidence and boldness. As your spine is straight, it allows the breath to flow in and out effortlessly.
This is a very simple example. But think how much it can affect your life, if you were to make a habit of sitting straight. It directly affects your mindset. Apart from that, you are also radiating to others an energy of boldness and confidence.
This leads me to a question
Can you use body to change your emotions?
Here is one interesting experience from my life. One evening due to some event, I was having really intense emotions of anger and jealousy. I was at my college at that time. I decided immediately to remove myself from that place and go home. Changing a place is a good tip to feel better when you are negative. So I begin riding my bicycle towards home. As I ride, I start feeling better simply because of the movement of the body that is generated by riding a bicycle. And 7 minutes later, by the time I reach home I feel totally alright, as if nothing had happened.
It also reminds me of the movie ‘Forrest Gump’. When he feels heartbroken, he just starts running. Something about that scene was really insightful. A man was not intelligent enough to overthink about a situation, but he just starts running intuitively as if he understood that his body has the power to change his emotions.
Once you start becoming aware of your body posture and emotions, you will also notice that breathing is largely connected to your emotions as well. When you are angry, you have rapid breath with rough sound. As you notice this, you can start taking deeper breaths without sound and instantly feel your mood changing.
I hope this post makes you realise an important aspect of your everyday life, and gets you thinking more about the geometry of your body and how it is affecting your mind.
Image source: hipwallpaper.com