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Respiratory System, Breathing and Meditation

Entries in balance (1)


Resting, relaxing, sleeping and balance

Winding down in the evening is important for my lifestyle. This is when I go most inward and into my creative and rejuvenating space. Sleep is important to me and since I wake at 5:00 a.m. each morning, I'm usually in bed by 9:00 p.m. I do get an 8-hour sleep each night.

My nighttime routine includes no electronics or screen time in the last hour before bed, and meditation on my meditation pillow in front of my fireplace just outside the woods, which is grounding for me. This is where my breathing is most important, so that I take that calm into my sleep. It's all part of the yoga life.

Red wine enhances sattva

A glass of red wine is a nice ritual. On wine and Respiratory System, "The cardiovascular risks and benefits of the ingestion of wine... have been well publicized; however, less attention has been focused upon the health effects of wine consumption on the respiratory system. The contention that some of the health benefits of wine are due, in part, to its ethanol also prompts an examination of the data on the effects on the respiratory tract. Substances providing an anti-oxidant effect (i.e., Resveratrol) could conceivably be associated with a beneficial effect on lung function, as has been suggested by a number of studies." (Source:

On spirituality, my peaceful spiritual Sattvic state seems perpetuated with some red wine, yet with more warmth and gratitude. It enhances my spiritual state since it relaxes any tensions that may hold my heart hostage or any blockages in my subtle body. It offers insight into my mind-body as one entity, beginning with my breathe. Red wine presents benefits to the heart, mainly the Resveratrol (more on that for Cardiovascular System). Its heart-warming dimension of love is calming, and helps me balance out more Tamas (dullness) and more Rajas (overthinking and action). As a part of evening meditations, savoring every sip of red wine reminds me to breathe. It’s an offering to me, like a treat. It brings meaning to the wine, by focusing and enjoying its favorable effects with each sip. That’s where the magic happens because the thoughts slow down and my body and mind relaxes.

Red wine in Ayurveda soothes the Vata dosha, white wine soothes the Pitta dosha. I have noticed the effects of restoring me to a balanced state.

Coming into balance

In terms of the gunas, when I’m feeling most Tamasic (getting tired, feeling bored to be in the room yet need to continue on), instead of getting up to take a break—which I know will exacerbate my state—I bring on the opposite of Tama, which is Raja. In other words, I move faster, breathe heavier (especially the inhales up into rib cage). This acts as a balancing act for me between Rajas/Tamas, which work together to make them both dissolve into myself, leaving Sattva. Since Rajas and Tamas are each something to tame in yoga, in this example, for me I am calming my story and emotional ego. Facing both Rajas and Tamas with the purpose of feeling more pure and Sattvic is a key to yoga.

In a similar way, TCM’s yin/yang are balancing. When I’m in the Yin, I’m feminine and softer. Yang is the opposing masculine. (each need each other to exist). Its balanced state is the goal.