I was taught a method of pranayama that involves sharply exhaling from each nostril in turn a number of times. When I was blowing my nose this morning it occurred to me that this action was similar to that of pranayama.

My question is: can blowing a person's nose to clear it of mucus be a form of pranayama for them?

  • Thanks, @Uday. It's my understanding that Comments are for asking for clarification about the question and therefore that your reply would better serve as an Answer. Does the Hinduism Stack Exchange work in a different way?
    – robertcday
    Jun 22 '18 at 15:02
  • my apologies to you...gave...unwanted comments.sorry. Jun 22 '18 at 15:09
  • Seeking a clarification wrt the words “be a form of pranayama” in the question.To the best of my info there is only one form of pranayama and it has no other forms. The pranayama should be done, in line with BG-Chapter 4- verses 29-30.Thank you. Jun 23 '18 at 4:08
  • There are many adaptations of Pranayama. @ Uday it is wrong to say there is only one form of Pranayama. The basics are the same - inhale deeply, hold for a while and exhale. The most common forms are inhaling and exhaling through alternate nostrils. Brammari Pranyama is another common form wherein the exercise is done while making a sound like humming of bees. There are still other variations. Jun 23 '18 at 4:27
  • As per the BG, pranayama should be done like a yajna and not some technique.My comments are related to the following words in the Q..."can blowing a person's nose to clear it of mucus be a form of pranayama", Otherwise i am generally aware that there are different types...but...all should follow the yajna principle@SureshRamaswamy Jun 23 '18 at 8:23

Yes that's called the Kapalbhati Pranayama. You will find a lot of videos on Youtube.com where the Pranayama is being demonstrated by the Yoga Guru Swami Ramadev. Like this one.

The Yogic treatise Hatha Yoga Pradipika's 2nd Chapter describes it as follows:

Atha kapālabhātih

Bhastrāvallohakārasya rechapūrau sasambhramau
Kapālabhātirvikhyātā kaphadoshaviśoshanī

When inhalation and exhalation are performed very quickly, like a pair of bellows of a blacksmith, it dries up all the disorders from the excess of phlegm, and is known as Kapâla Bhâti.

So, as you can see it is a little bit more than just exhaling rapidly with some force. But still Kapalabhati is the answer to your question.

Also, the purpose of this Pranayama is obviously not just clearing the nose. It's the most preliminary breathing exercise that helps in awakening the Kundalini Shakti - the primary goal of Yoga. Besides, it also has other health related benefits. More advanced forms of Pranayama, that involve Kumbhaka (retaining the breath inside), are practiced thereafter.

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