Series: Renegade Thinkers
Jun 11, 2020
Activating the Pineal Gland
"By squeezing the air we breathe through the centers in our body and visualizing the energy to remain at the top of the head, the spinal fluid is pushed up the spine all the way to the pineal gland. This activates the pineal gland and the body and mind transform from survival mode to that of creation. Mystical moments come as an aftermath."
Missing Link with Yoga
With my yoga practice, I have no blueprint on how to navigate my progress. Sure, I do the asanas, do the pranayama and then finish with meditation. I have even garnered a few gifts in the process - strength, youth and staying disease-free. But they all happened by themselves without any conscious control over my physiology. But how to I level-up? Do I do more difficult asanas? Do I hold my breath longer during my kumbhakas? Do I meditate longer and more often in a day? And even if I do, what next? The yogic texts offer no blueprint on this.
When yogis are able to consciously control their physiology (stopping their heartbeat, increasing their body temperature and be impervious to sub-zero temperature, etc.), how do they do it? In short, what's the missing link from doing asanas to performing these super-human feats? I haven't come across any yoga doctrine that gave me a sense of bearing on this. Until Wim Hof.
The Wim Hof Method showed how we can gain access and control of our autonomic nervous system, immune system and endocrine system through breathing. It offered a short explanation about the missing link I was looking for to bridge my understanding of the process:
"by breathing deeply and continuously, the body turns alkaline and by holding the breath, the adrenaline kicks up into the brain and a switch is turned on - all the thinking from the brain is gone, and it is replaced by feeling from the heart. That's when you begin to control your involuntary systems."
So, it's just like riding a bike with training wheels. You just keep riding and one day, you just notice the training wheels aren't touching the pavement anymore. It's not a slow transition but a quick transformation - like a light switch. So, I was on the right track all along, and the next step would have happened anyway if I just kept doing what I was already doing. Wim Hof's input was enough for me. My search was satiated. But then, I saw the video of Dr. Joe Dispenza!
Dr. Joe Dispenza
When I viewed Joe Dispenza's more detailed scientific explanation, it shed more light. It gave me a deeper appreciation and understanding of the processes that take place. The blueprint got clearer and more detailed.
The pineal gland a pea-sized and pinecone-shaped organ residing in the center of the brain, between the right and left hemispheres. So, unlike most parts of the brain, it stands alone and not paired. It is part of the endocrine system which regulates growth and metabolism. Not much is known about the pineal gland as far as mainstream science goes. They know it regulates melatonin which is an anti-aging substance, aids in our sleep and that a malfunction in the pineal gland leads to hormonal imbalance. Aside from that, it's just a mysterious organ to science.
In the yogic and esoteric traditions however, the pineal gland is the seat of the soul - the bridge between the physical and the metaphysical. It is widely regarded as instrumental in opening the third eye or activating the Ajna Chakra. The 3rd Eye not a physical organ but a state of consciousness where you see clarity beyond the physical perception of the senses - higher dimensions of perception open up.
How to Breathe to Activate the Pineal Gland
This incorporates the methods of J. Dispenza (simplified version) with my own practice. The basic difference is that I sit on full lotus (Padmasana), gesture the Gyana Mudra and employ the Jalandara Bandha.
- start with empty lungs, then squeeze the anus (Mula Bandha) while inhaling, visualizing that you're pumping up the spinal fluid upwards through the spine
- when the lungs and belly are fully inflated, hold the breath and follow-up the squeezing anal-action by contracting the lower belly (Uddiyana Bandha), solar plexus (Manipura Chakra), heart (Anahata Chakra), through the throat (Visuddhi Chakra), pass the third eye (Ajna Chakra) and up the crown of the head (Sahasrara Chakra)
- when the concentration is already up the Sahasrara Chakra, take the chin down towards the chest (Jalandara Bandha) and concentrate on the spinal fluid in the brain.
- By squeezing, pumping and pushing-up this powerful energy (the same energy that creates a baby, the same energy that activates your beast mode in times of survival, etc.), the energy is released back up to the brain (best to imagine ignition and fireworks happening inside the brain)
- The brain at this point transitions into Gamma Brain Wave pattern. This creates an altered state of super awareness and heightened consciousness, resulting in a feeling of euphoria, bliss, and lightness.
- This creates a domino-effect that hits the pineal gland. The pineal gland now releases melatonin, an anti-oxidant that sedates our survival mode. This suppresses our appetite, our sex drive and other earthly drives. This causes us to fully relax at the present moment.
- Melatonin regulates sleep/waking-up, but this time, melatonin induces lucid dreaming - a dreamlike state where you have full cognitive awareness. This sedates the thinking mind. Mystical episodes begin to happen. Essentially, at this point, the pineal gland is activated.
With gratitude to Wim Hof and Joe Dispenza, I now fit the missing link to complete my blueprint. With this, I get a sense of bearing and a sense of direction. I have increased motivation and increased confidence in deepening my practice. Already, I am at the cusp of something new that's about to happen. I am integrating this method even to my physical workout (video to follow). It's an exciting time. If not for anything else, the lockdown which stranded me in Nong Khai has also given me all the time I need to further my practice.
--- Gigit (TheLoneRider)
YOGA by Gigit | Learn English | Travel like a Nomad | Donation Bank
Reader Comments:Federica (Feb 16, 2022) I accidentally jumped in your blog, while I was searching about the breathing technique of Joe Dispenza. I have been reading his books but there are still some doubts towards his tecnique. But incredibly while I was reading your article I saw that we are on the same path, as I am doing Wimhof method also 🙂
So to what it may concern Joe Dispenza, do you do the breathing tecnique from the perineum to the head for all the meditation, or just few breaths before starting? I hope I didnt bother you! But if I find a person on the same path, I think we also share the sharing of our own experience. I wish you the best present moment 🙂 Thank you so much!
(Feb 16, 2022) Federica, your question is not clear to me, but I will answer it in the way I understand it. Your question is: "Do you do the breathing tecnique from the perineum to the head for all the meditation, or just few breaths before starting?"
Answer: depends on the meditation. If I am doing Anapana Meditation, then I only observe the breath - I do not regulate it. If it's shallow, then it's shallow. If it's deep, then it's deep. I don't change it, I don't react to it. However, if I am doing a Pranayama Meditation, like ujjayi breathing meditation, then yes, I fully inhale to expand my lungs (all the way to the muladhara chakra) and exhale fully to empty my lungs (all the way to the sahasrara chakra). If I am doing Bandha Pranayama, then I even engage all 3 bandhas in my breathing - mula bandha, uddhiyana and jalandara bandhas - again from muladhara to sahasrara.
(Jun 13, 2020) Wow very well explained by Dr. Joe. Perhaps this is also the missing piece to get the full benefits of the headstand.
(Jun 13, 2020) Essentially, without mentioning the technical name for it, Dr. Dispenza was explaining the Maha Bandha Mudra while doing a Bahya Kumbhaka (breath-hold on the inhale). This is a recurring theme in many practices I've come across, with different names being used - Tummo Yoga, Wim Hof Method, Yoga Makaranda, etc.
Without the Jalandhara Bandha, I've also used this in doing the headstand...although with difficulty because all the organs are already upside down to begin with, so adding an Uddiyana Bandha exacerbates the pressure on the organs.
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Deepak Chopra: author, lecturer, healer(Oct 12, 2020) Deepak has been one of the front runners in the New Age wellness era where he fusions science, ayurveda, yoga, mysticism and esoteric teachings into a viable and comprehensible healing modality that is relevant to the modern conscious seeker.....more »»
Nong Khai Travel Information / Tips
Vientiane to Nong Khai by bus
At the Khua Din Bus Terminal, you can board the #14 bus bound for Buddha Park. It will make a stop on the Friendship Bridge border - 15 mins, B8000. Go to Laos Immigration to exit. Board the special bus to cross the Friendship Bridge, Kip 4,000 or Baht 20. It will stop at Thai Immigration. Get processed. From there, board a tuk-tuk for Nong Khai, 5kms.
Nong Khai Attractions
- Nong Khai Aquarium -
- Salakaewkoo (Wat Khaek) -
- Issan Rum Distillery -
- Wat Pho Chai -
- Lan Phaya Nak -
- Tha Sadet Market -
- Nong Khai Muay Thai Gym -
- Phrathat Bang Phuan -
Nong Khai Blogs by TheLoneRider
- Nong Khai - Chiang Khan Roadtrip June 18, 2020
- Life in Nong Khai Mar 13 - June 18, 2020
- Peoplescape of Nong Khai Jun 17, 2020
- Exploring Nong Khai's Cafe Culture Jun 10, 2020
- Nong Khai Street Art June 4, 2020
- Sirsasana A & B May 20, 2020
- Structured Water, Water Therapy and Nauli May 1, 2020
- Visiting the Salakaewkoo (Buddha Park) in Nong Khai, Thailand Apr 23, 2020
- Fitness in Quarantine Times Apr 20, 2020
- Covid 19: Lion - Buffalo Analogy Apr 13, 2020
- Covid 19 and the Conspiracies Mar - Apr, 2020
- Nong Khai with Cheng Mar 18 - Apr ???, 2020
- Covid 19 and Pranayama Mar 20, 2020
- Giant Mekong Catfish at the Nong Khai Aquarium Mar 19, 2020
- Drawn to Nong Khai, Thailand Mar 12, 2020
Travel Tips for Thailand
How to Get a 60-Day Thai Tourist Visa and then Extend by another 30 Days
This process is BEFORE Covid 19. Not sure what it is now.
- Bring the following to the Thai embassy:
a) proof of money (bank statement will suffice)
b) flight booking to Thailand
c) onward flight back to your country from Thailand
d) filled-in tourist visa form
e) 2 passport pictures
f) hotel booking in Thailand (they didn't ask me for this but better be safe)
g) passport with at least 6 months validity
- After handing over all the documents, they will ask you to come pick your passport with the visa the following day from 4 to 5pm. That's it!
- NOTE: after 2 successful attempts, I was already questioned the 3rd time.
60-Day Thai Tourist Visa
NOTE: There is no need to go back to your country to get the Thai tourist visa. Any major city with a Thai Embassy will do. Apparently there is also no need to have an invitation from a Thai establishment to justify the visa.
- bring the following to the Immigration Office:
a) passport (make sure your Tourist Visa hasn't expired yet)
b) Baht 1900
c) photocopy of your passport + visa duration date stamp + TM6 card (white immigration card) and sign all the copies
d) completed TM7 visa extension form (available at the Immigration Office)
e) one 4cmx6cm passport picture
- submit the above to the Front Desk. They will give you a stub with your number on it. Take a seat and wait for your number to be called
- when your number is called, your picture will be taken. Then go back to your seat. They will call you again.
- when they call you again, they'll give you your passport with your extended visa. That's it!
- when there are no lines, the whole process can take only 10 minutes
NOTE: When your 60-day visa is close to expiry and you want to extend your stay. No need to leave Thailand.
Book Train Tickets in Thailand
Book Train Tickets in Thailand Online by Train36.com
General Travel Tips
- arrive early - in case there is a snag (visa snag, documentation snag, transport ticket snag, etc.), you will have ample time to troubleshoot the problem if you arrive early (to the airport, to the bus terminal, etc.)
- put detailed itinerary on the Calendar apps of your smart-phone according to timelines - this is where you do all your thinking and planning. Once written down, you don't have to think anymore while you are on the journey...you just follow the steps. This frees your mind for something else that might happen while you are already en route
- avoiding scams - as a general rule, I ignore the touts or anyone I don't know who call out to me. The calling comes in many forms - "Hi! Where are you from?", "Excuse me! Excuse me!", "Where are you going?". I don't look them in the eye and I remain non-verbal with them. If you reply to them, you just gave them an 'in' to hound you. In order not to look rude, I smile and wave the 'not interested' hand to them, without looking at them.
- power bank - hand-carry your power bank. Do not check it in. You can be called in when you are already inside the plane to go all the way to the loading dock so you can personally remove the power bank...and chances are, you'll have to surrender it to them. And you might delay the plane departure!
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