The Pranayama Institute

The Pranayama Institute Orb logo

Fitting the Practice of Pranayama in One's Daily Life in the Modern World

Practicing Pranayama can be likened to building a superstructure; like a skyscraper, the practice of Pranayama requires the solid foundation of balanced living, organized thoughts, and a calm emotional life. Without such a stable base in good habits of living, Pranayama will seem very difficult to practice regularly, let alone master, and in time the practitioner will forsake Pranayama in favor of easier and less effective spiritual pursuits. While technology has created many timesaving devices, the modern world has also produced a whole host of distractions. It is common to be easily distracted by the world and uncommon to remain focused on first-things-first, using the tools technology affords us to make time to go within. This lesson covers those aspects of the Yogic life which can assist the Yogi in succeeding in the practice of Pranayama.

When to Practice

Ancient Yogic texts recommend that Pranayama be practiced four times a day for roughly two hours per sitting. The first morning's practice begins at 5:00 a.m., the second session starts at 11:00 a.m., the third sitting commences at 5:00 p.m., and the last starts at 11:00 p.m. These hours correspond to the annual changes of season which promote aging in the body, so it is wisest to practice the changelessness producing techniques of Pranayama at these times to counteract the negative effects generated. However, as straightforward as this may sound, such a routine is nearly impossible for most individuals living today in the West. Fortunately, it is not necessary to adopt such an exacting regimen of Pranayama to gain tremendous benefits and ultimately master the science of Pranayama. Serious Yoga students are advised to practice Pranayama twice daily, or once in the morning before breakfast and once in the evening before taking food. Pranayama in the morning and the evening will sandwich in the day with calmness and produce lasting results which will permeate both the day and the night. Each session can last from one half hour to three hours, depending on time availability. The secret to maintaining such a routine is to rise early in the morning and retire fairly early in the evening. Most Yogis awaken from between 3:00 a.m. to 5:30 a.m. Any later and they will miss the opportunity to practice Pranayama in the auspicious early morning hours as the sun rises. Similarly, Yogis will practice Pranayama as the sun is setting so that they will have time to take food and digest their meal fully before sleeping from between 10:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.

So the first motto to remember are the words of Benjamin Franklin who said: "Early to bed, early to rise makes a man [and woman] healthy, wealthy, and wise." Hoary Yogic treatises may contain highly esoteric aphorisms that pundits argue over for centuries, but the greatest philosophies and techniques are valueless if one oversleeps and is forced to run to work after taking a few sips of coffee. That is not to say one should be starved for sleep either. The path of Pranayama is the balanced path of not sleeping too much nor to little, of not overeating nor starving the body, of not speaking too much nor of becoming a mute. Balance in all activities is to be sought, and it is far more difficult to achieve a balanced existence than slide from one extreme to the next. Some students ask, "If I can only practice once a day, is it better to practice in the morning or in the evening?" In response to this question, Sankara Saranam has said that it is better to practice both in the morning and in the evening, his point being that students, especially beginners, should not give themselves an "out" to practice only once a day when progress is made far more quickly by simply adding another session of Pranayama to every twenty-four hour period. However, all Yogis are absolutely unanimous concerning the importance of practicing Pranayama in the morning before the day begins. For this reason we use the term, "first-things-first." The habit of practicing Pranayama upon awakening may seem hard to acquire, but once the habit is formed, the Yoga student will find that it is difficult to begin the day without first devoting time to Pranayama. So the first lesson in fitting Pranayama into our busy lives is to keep first-things-first in mind upon awakening. This will be easy if the student rises early which in turn is painless if the Yogi sleeps at a reasonable hour. Also, one should learn to wake themselves up by consciously asking the mind to wake the body at a certain hour. Simply affirm in your mind as you are falling asleep that you will awaken at a certain hour. After a few nights of such subconscious affirmation the mind will be trained to awaken you when you so desire. The advantage to this method, beside not needing the rude awakening of an alarm clock, is that the body will automatically regulate your sleeping so that you are fully refreshed upon rising.

Organizing the Yogic Morning

Once the habit of rising early with the intent to practice Pranayama is solidified, a routine of morning activities that are to be performed prior to Pranayama must be established so that their execution is done effortlessly and efficiently. This means that the mind must be constantly centered on calmness while the body follows the necessary motions in preparation for Pranayama. The first activity to be performed is the cleaning of the mouth. Most people simply brush their teeth, if that, rinse the mouth, and go on with their day. However, Yogis pay special attention to the tongue as it plays an important role in the practice of Pranayama. The tongue can both absorb prana as the breath is made to pass over it in certain positions and direct prana through certain Yogic manipulations called mudras. Therefore, Yogis brush the tongue even more vigorously than they do the teeth. A clean tongue that is ready to play an active role in Pranayama exercises will have a pink red color after the removal of toxins that make it look a pale white. It is important to remember to clean the base of the tongue as well since many respiratory problems start there. It is also important to brush the gums. Some Yogis swear by the salutary practice of gargling with saltwater and even the slow intake of saltwater through the nostrils. Performance of these cleansing exercises will keep the mouth, throat, and nasal passages clean and healthy. Again, most people are not so dedicated to preventing upper respiratory diseases that they bother to gargle with saltwater even once a day. However, as long as the Yoga student brushes the tongue twice a day, gets plenty of vitamin C from a proper diet, and gargles with saltwater a few times a week, he or she can prevent sore throats and other respiratory problems that pose as obstacles to the practice of Pranayama. After the oral cavity, it is necessary to drink some fluids in order to induce peristalsis which will further promote bowel movement. Most practitioners take up to twenty four oz. of warm water toward this end. Some Yogis prefer lemon and a sweetener added to cool water. If you are so inclined, then it is better to drink this light lemonade before brushing the teeth. The lemon is a good antiseptic for the digestive organs.

After cleaning the oral cavity, stomach, and nasal passages, Yogis will often brush and/or massage the scalp to more fully awaken the mental faculties. Sleep often has chloroform-like effects on the mind. While great masters have stated that all human beings are Yogis when they sleep since prana partially retires from the senses, Yogis who wish to reach the superconscious state consider the subconsciousness of sleep a tamasic, or degenerating activity. For this reason have Yogis devised methods to remain conscious while the body performs its nocturnal habit of resting. So, brushing the hair, massaging and brushing the scalp, and pulling and tying the hair back and away from the face are important in preparing for Pranayama practice. Individuals with long hair will find that some Yogic techniques are more comfortably performed when the hair is pulled away from the face. Further, a slight pull on the hair will invigorate the scalp. Some Yogis even use the hair as an antenna to collect stray pranic currents. Toward this end do they grow the hair long and massage the hair with olive oil which has been found to be a conductor of pranic current. In any case, students of Pranayama are advised at the very least to brush the scalp in an effort to fully awaken the brain after hours of sleep.

After massaging the scalp, students are asked to wash the face and open the pores before Pranayama practice. Many students desire a shower in the morning but this is generally not advised since a full-fledged shower takes too much time from the limited morning hours. Further, one does not wish to become too active before Pranayama but instead only do those few necessary things between rising in the early morning and meditating. Opening and cleansing the pores in the morning helps in feeling alive and refreshed, improves mental clarity, and keeps the skin young and clear. Finally, it is imperative that the Yogi empty the bowels before the practice of Pranayama. While some Yogis do not wish to ingest anything, even water, before the practice of Pranayama, promoting a bowel movement is made easier by the intake of some fluids, as mentioned earlier. However, caffeinated drinks like some sodas, coffee, and some teas is strictly forbidden. If one must have their morning coffee, it is best to have it after Pranayama practice, not before. It is best to have an herbal tea sweetened with honey. Those that have no trouble in emptying the bowels in the morning need drink nothing at all if it is their preference to drink after meditation. It should be also noted that many of the pre-meditation exercise of physical culture prescribed by Yogis have the effect of promoting a bowel movement as well.

Next, it advisable to clean the armpits. Though this practice may clear some odor, the real purpose is a refreshing feeling that this practice gives. Use minimal amounts of soap and if you use warm water, end with a cool water splash. After bowel movement, it is also advisable to wash the anus and genitals with water. Use the left hand for the anus and the right for the genitals. Some Yogis use the middle finger of the left hand to clean the rectum, but you can also use the little finger. Again, use minimal amounts of soap and end with a coolw water splash. The seven cleansing rites are therefore the stomach, the mouth, the head, the face, the armpits, the genitals, and the anus.

Once one's morning ablutions are completed, it is necessary to perform some physical exercises in the spirit of preparation for the practice of Pranayama. However, it is important to ask for what purpose a particular style of physical culture was developed. Most Western forms of exercise, like weight lifting, jogging, and aerobics were not systematized to precede Pranayama practice. Yogic exercises do not strain the heart but lightly work it, are performed slowly with the deepest concentration, do not result in any build-up of lactic acid, and deal more with energy in motion than with muscles in motion. At the same time, some individuals consider themselves Yogis simply because they perform Yogic postures, or asanas. These students fail to understand that true Yoga is embodies in the practice of the introversion of the consciousness, not in the system of asanas nor in any method of physical culture. A person who practices asanas alone is no more a Yogi than an individual who boxes or swims. These may bring good health as asanas do, but they are not Yoga. The system of asanas was designed to prepare the practitioner for Pranayama, nothing more. Overzealousness where developing the body is concerned is a clear sign of spiritually misguided behavior. Rather, keep the body in shape by giving it its due, nothing more or less. The body is due regular exercise, a balanced diet, plenty of liquids, and regular periods of rest. Master the steady posture for sitting and then search more deeply into the heart of Yoga, or Pranayama.

There are seven practices of physical culture necessary for the Yogi. Some of these may not be within the capacity of certain individuals due to physical limitations. It is therefore suggested that you tailor your routine according to the guidlines given. The first exercise is Tension/Relaxation. This technique is taught by the Pranayama Institute as follows:

Tension and Relaxation

The theory behind tension/relaxation exercises is as old as the science of Yoga itself. Indeed, they are one and the same. The whole premise of Yoga is that where there is energy there is consciousness, further that energy can be directed through tension, and so consciousness can be made to retire from the body and senses through super-relaxation. The following exercises can therefore be considered one of the best systems of meditative physical culture, for not only is the body developed through tension, but the mind is trained to direct the consciousness through tension and withdraw the consciousness through relaxation.

The following twenty-two exercises are to be practiced twice daily in the sitting position prior to the practice of Pranayama. The various body parts and motions listed are a system embedded in the Hebrew Alephbet. Each of the twenty-two letters of Hebrew is a code for a part of the body that can be focused on in a sequential order. When the body is made to run through the rite of the Hebrew code, the practitioner learns greater control of the body and understands the secret of the seeming body/mind dichotomy. With diligent practice the practitioner will realize that there is no real difference between the body and mind but rather they are made of the same prana (energy) at differing rates of vibration, at different levels of subtlety. Transcendence over both the body and mind is achieved when the realization comes that the consciousness in the body is neither the body nor the mind but the energy coursing through them and employing them. This can be attained through daily practice of Pranayama and Tension/Relaxation.

Practice the following slowly with eyes closed, focused upward, and straight back. If an exercise calls for motion, always return to the upright calm position before moving on to the next exercise. You may practice the rite up to three times in a row or focus on one particular exercise more deeply before moving on to the next. Memorize the entire technique so that the practice becomes second-nature. Each technique is to be practiced a minimum of three times. Relaxation and tension should both be done slowly with concentration. The practice is best done in open air with all the body exposed to the sun. However, that may be just enough (or more than enough, in some parts of the world) sunshine to absorb for a single day.

  1. Aleph (The Brain)--Tense the head and medulla oblongata (back of the neck) with a slight vibration. Aleph means “one thousand” and refers to the thousand and one functions of the brain, the "thousand petaled lotus," and the myriad thoughts indulged in during one lifetime.
  2. Bet (The Body)--Tense the entire body from head to toe, including clenching the fists, curling the toes, tightening the buttocks, squeezing the entire face to the tip of the nose, etc. Bet means “house” and is a reference to the house of the body which houses the consciousness.
  3. Gimel (The Throat)--Tense the entire throat and medulla oblongata at the base of the skull. Gamel means “camel” and refers to the throat.
  4. Dalet (The Ears)--Tense the ears by making a sharp grimace with the face and eyes. Hold the intense smile for as long as is comfortable. Dalet means “door” and refers to the door of the ears through which the sounds of the world enter the mind.
  5. Heh (The Hands)--Clench the fists tightly. Heh refers to the five fingers of the hand with which we give and receive.
  6. Vav (The Neck)--Tense all parts of the neck. In this exercise relaxation can be performed quickly with the chin dropping to the chest with a bounce a for complete withdrawal of the energy. Vav means “and” which refers to a bridge. The neck serves as a bridge between the head and the body.
  7. Zion (The Spine)--Tense the entire spine and head, from the base of the spine at the coccyx to the cerebrum. Pull the shoulders back and tense the abdomen with this spinal tension. Zion is like a lightning bolt and refers to the lightning-like power in the seven plexuses which are the source of spiritual power.
  8. Chet (The Legs)--Tense the legs, feet, and buttocks. Chet is a symbol of infinity with the legs the pillars which support the finite-infinite paradox.
  9. Tet (The Perineum)--Tighten the perineum by squeezing the anal sphincter muscles. Tet is the snake or the elevating power locked in the coccygeal plexus.
  10. Yud (The Forehead)--Knit the brow at the point between the eyebrows and gently squeeze the eyes. Yud is literally the arms but in mystical terminology yud refers to spiritual vision which originates at the point between the eyebrows. This vision requires much spiritual labor (arms) to attain, however.
  11. Caph (The Arms)--Tense the arms from the fists to the shoulders. Caph means “hands.”
  12. Lamed (The Heart)-- Puff out the chest like a proud conqueror. Fold the palms at the chest as in prayer. Tension should be in the shoulders, chest, and upper spine. Lamed means “learn” and the heart is where all learning takes place. Lamed is also the spiritual devotion which we fly on like a rocket.
  13. Mem (The Abdomen)--Tense the abdomen, both the lower parts and upper part and stomach. Tension should also be felt in the spine opposite the belly. Mem (or mayim) means “water” and refers to the digestive juices in the stomach.
  14. Nun (The Seat)--Tense the buttocks and lower spine or those parts which comprise our seat. Nun has the shape of one sitting.
  15. Samech (The Face)--Scrunch the face with tension as if you are bringing the entire face to the tip of the nose. Samech is a circle and refers to the face.
  16. Ayin (The Eyes)--Gently tense the eyes and move the eyeballs in circular motions. Ayin means “eye.”
  17. Peyh (The Mouth)--With the mouth closed pull the tongue back to touch the uvula which is the nipple-like organ that hangs at the back of the mouth. If you cannot reach that far pull it back to where it is comfortable and maintain its position for as long as it is comfortable. Peyh means "mouth."
  18. Tzadik (Humility)--Exhale and place the chin on the chest and bend over so the head is between the knees. Keep the head there with the breath out for as long as it is comfortable. Tzadik means “righteous” and has the shape of one bent in humility.
  19. Kuf (Divinity)--Drop the head to the chest, tense the neck and with that tension held pull the head back until the forehead faces the ceiling. Relax the neck and drop the chin to the chest with a bounce. The letter Kuf is short for kadosh or “holiness.”
  20. Reish (The Head)--Lock the chin to the chest and keep it there, continuously exerting a pull on the back of the neck. Press firmly on the chest with the chin and further push up on the chin with the chest for several seconds. "Rosh" is literally the head.
  21. Shin (The Teeth)--Open the mouth fully then close the mouth with slight tension, clenching the teeth. Shin means “tooth.”
  22. Tuf (Expiration)--Make a double, triple, or quadruple exhalation through the mouth with the audible sound of “huh, huh, huh, huuuuuuuh.” Allow the body to inhale of its own accord with closed mouth and sit in utter stillness. Perform this multiple exhalation several times, resting in silence in between.

After practicing Tension/Relaxation, a good practice is Surya Namaskar or the Sun Salutations. However, in light of Pranayama practice, the first three postures of the Salutations are the most important. So, if time or physical problems pose as limitations, make an effort to perform at least the first three postures a dozen times. First, stand straight with feet together and hands folded at the chest. Exhale. This is posture number one. Second, arch back, lifting the arms above your head while keeping the hands together. Look up and back as you bend the upper body backward, keeping the legs straight. Inhale as you bend back. This is posture number two. Third, bend foward, exhaling and separating the hands, until you can place your hands to the sides, but a hand's length above, the feet. Bend the knees only if necessary and relax the head. This is posture number three. If you wish to stop there, return back to position number two and finally back to the starting posture. However, if you wish to continue, shoot the right leg as far back as you can, inhalaing and resting the right foot on the floor, and look up. This is posture number four. The fifth position requires that the left foot joins the right foot and the body is made to be straight as if in preparation for a push-up. Hold the breath during the motion into the fifth position. With an exhalation, drop the knees, chest, and chin to the ground while keeping the hands and feet on the ground as well. This is the sixth posture. Then inhale as your arms lift the upper body into the cobra position. Tense the buttocks as you stretch the head and neck back toward the feet, looking upward. This is the seventh position. Bring the feet a bit closer and point the buttocks up into the air making it the highest point of a triangle with the feet and hands the lower points. Hold the breath in during the shift to the eighth position. Maintain holding the breath as you enter the fourth position, only this time with the right leg forward near the feet and the left leg kept back. Then enter the third position with an exhalation, the second position with an inhalation, and the first position, which makes twelve in total, with an exhalation. Practice this routine twelve times.

The third practice is the shoulderstand or Sarvangasana. Again, if the practice of this asana is not possible, then attempt to apply the principles involved in a manner that does not strain the body. The principle is that the body must be inverted, or the legs placed above the head. Many Yogis practice the headstand, but this is even more difficult than the shoulderstand. Those who cannot practice either may consider purchasing an inversion. However, for all of these practices there are certain contraindications that must be noted. Check with your physician if you have any concerns. The practice of sarvangasana is performed on the floor with minimal cushion. Placing a blanket on a carpet should afford sufficent comfort in the practice of the asana. Lie down on your back with your arms to your side and feet touching. Breathe normally. Lift the legs slowly until they are perpedicular with the floor. If this is too difficult, you can reach the desired position by bending the knees to the degree that it is necessary. If this position is where you would like to stop, then simply maintain it while breathing normally. However, if you can continue, pull the legs over and behind the head until the feet are touching the floor well behind the head. This is yet another station where you can stop if comfort limits your motion. Continuing, bend the knees and place them by the ears resting in that position for a few moments. Then place the hands on the back as support with the elbows remaining on the floor. Push the legs up, still keeping the knees straight, until the knees are pointing to the ceiling. Finally, straighten the legs until the feet are pointing toward the ceiling. Stay in this position for one to three minutes and gradually build up to twelve minutes. The torso and legs must be straight with the chin pressed against the chest. The entire practice from start to finished can also be done with straight legs, but this may pose more difficulty to the beginner. Once you have returned to the starting position, lying flat on the floor, the reverse position is required. To enter this pose, simply lift the upper body and chest with the elbows while keeping the buttocks and legs on the floor. Let the head and neck relax and fall back. This should create an arch in the spine and a stretch to the throat. Rest the upper body on the head then remove the prop of the elbows while keeping the body in the same position with all the weight on the head and buttocks. Stretch the arms back over the head and inhale deeply. Hold this postion for a minute or so, then return the weight to the elbows and slowly relax and rest on the ground.

The fourth position that is beneficial before Pranayama practice is the Cobra (Bhujangasana). Lie flat on the floor on the chest with the hands near the shoulders. Rest the head on the forehead. Slowly lift the upper body with the hands while keeping the hips on the floor. For the first foot of distance between your chin and the floor, keep the buttocks and lower back relaxed. This will improve the lordosis. With an extended Cobra, tense the buttocks to support the lower back as the arms are gradually straightened and the head is pulled back. Hold this posture for several moments then slowly relax to rest on the ground. Practice twice for best results. After the Cobra, rest the arms by the side with the palms facing downward. Rest the head on the chin in preparation for the fifth asana, the Locust Pose. Gently lift the right leg with the foot from six to eighteen inches off the ground, depending on your personal capacity. Hold the straight leg in that position for twelve seconds and then slowly drop the foot to the ground. Do the same for the left leg. Use the hands for support during the practice. After lifting each leg individually a few times, attempt to lift both legs simultaneously. Toward this end, it is helpful to bend the elbows and move the hands a few inches foward toward the shoulders. If keeping the palms flat on the floor is difficult, you may make a fist to help support the practice of the Locust Pose (Shalabhasana).

The sixth posture is the Twist (Matsyendrasana). As the full Twist is out of the reach of most people, the Half (ardha) Twist will be described herein. Again, the principle is simply to give the spine a good twist, not to cause undue strain. Some strain and pain is acceptable within certain limits, but if you are clearly unable to practice the method, apply the principle in another way. One variation is to lie on your back, bend the right knee while resting the right thigh on the left thigh. Press down with the right knee while the left arm stretches over the chest and the head is turned to the right. Use the right arm to balance the body in this twisting position. Practice the technique in reverse as well, then practice the entire technique again. The Half-Twist is accomplished in the upright position. Sit on the floor with the legs stretched out in front of you. Place the left foot under the butocks and the right foot on the left side of the left knee. Place the left elbow near the left knee, and the left hand under the right foot if possible, and use the right hand on the ground to cause a twist to the right. Press left against the right knee with the left elbow. Turn the head and look behind you with the hips still facing forward. Practice the posture in reverse, holding each position for twelve seconds, exhalaing into the stretch, then do the entire exercise again.

The last technique is a bandha (lock) as opposed to an asana (posture). The technique is called Uddiyana Bandha, which is the lock that causes the prana to soar upward through the spine. Sit in the meditation position on a chair or on the floor with back straight, shoulders pulled back, chin pressed against the chest, attention placed on the point between the eyebrows, and hands interlocked over the abdomen. Exhale forcefully through the mouth, breaking up the exhalations into several spurts of "huh, huh, huh, huuuuuuuuuuh," the last clip of exhalation being the longest. Relax the abdomen while you expand the chest, pulling in the abdomen with its expansion. Keep the chin locked to the chest. Do not breathe in, but take in a mock inhalation in order to lift the chest and shoulders even further. Hold this bandha for six full seconds, then slowly relax and inhale. Relax the chin lock on the chest (Jalandhara Bandha) and breathe normally. Practice this method six times. Feel the prana pull on the pineal gland with the correct and persevering performance of the technique. Hence, the seven techniques of physical and astral (pranic) culture to prepare for Pranayama are Tension/Relaxation, Sun Salutations, inversion, the Cobra, the Locust, the Twist, and Uddiyana Bandha.

Balanced Living

A few words may be said concerning diet. First, the best of all diets for the Yoga comprises of an abundance of fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, and grains, and purified water. Yogis often eat dairy, and sometimes eat eggs, but the ingestion of meat is fairly discouraged. The reason for this is simply that meat products contain a high amount of toxins which put an enormous strain on the system to eliminate. Yogis obviously do not wish to partake in the slaughter of innocent animals as well, but fish, beef, pork, and fowl are impure foods which will eventually be found to make the body indisposed to the highest benefits of Pranayama. Pranayama can eventually conquer any limitation, but those who deeply practice Pranayama will unfailingly find that their appetite for meat products will eventually subside.

In regard to which exercise is best to practice for your particular body, we advise students to study the lessons in Tension/Relaxation discovered by Sankara Saranam. Using an ancient technique of dividing the body into 22 different energy paths, each having its distinct sruti or sound, the practitioner of The Pranayama Institute's techniques of Tension/Relaxation takes the body on a journey through a lexicon of physical rites. These techniques cleanse, heal, and awaken the body to greater potentials of physical, mental, and emotional expression. They are among some of the best methods to prepare the body and mind for the practice of Pranayama. A student may find that other activities are necessary to have a balanced regimen of exercise, as the Tension/Relaxation exercises are primarily used as a preparation for Pranayama. However, the benefits, both physical and mental, cannot be understated.

The secret to balanced living is to know when to eat and when not to eat, when to sleep and when not to sleep, when to enjoy periods of relaxation and recreation and when it is time for spiritual study and service to others. The students that are most successful in Pranayama are usually the ones that have the rest of their lives in order. This is not surprising for whatever your habits are throughout the day, those habits will you bring to your meditations. Concentration is the principle factor in succeeding in the practice of Pranayama. However, it is impossible to concentrate fully when the mind is engrossed with the events of the day and the problems of life. It is hard enough to concentrate even when our lives are peaceful and harmonious. The Yogis advise students to live the moral life, the selfless life, the simple life and to reach a state of contentment whatever may come. This does not mean one should be lazy and be satisfied with one's lot. On the contrary, Yoga students must work hard to change themselves and remove unwanted bad habits. If you are subject to a limiting environment or poor company which prevents from making real changes, then change the company you keep and live elsewhere. Find a habitat which is quiet, has plenty of fresh air, and is not expensive to live in. Establish a connection with nature. Plain living cannot bring lasting happiness, but it is more conducive for the practice of Pranayama which can bring lasting joy. Always remember, when building your day, for what your day is intended. Build a life of Pranayama, not the life of worries and restlessness.