In Sanskrit ‘Swara’ means a sound note. It is also the flow of air through nostrils. There are three kinds of breathing patterns:

  1. When air flow is predominant in left nostril (active ‘Ida’ Swar)
  2. When air flow is predominant in right nostril (active ‘Pingla’ Swar)
  3. When air flow is balanced in both the nostrils (active ‘Sushumna’ Swar)

While Ida and Pingla exists for longer period, ‘Sushumna’ swar is a few seconds event between the transition of Ida to Pingla or vice versa. It’s an elite experience to observe this transition and the best verge of meditation is possible during Sushumna transition.

If one observes the breathing, it is very easy to find out which nostril is active. Daily, around sunrise, alternatively each nostril gets active for around 1 hour. Hence, in a day, each nostril is active for around 12 hours in alternate pattern.

The activation pattern for both the nostrils are different on different days (depending on movement of moon around the earth)

Activation Pattern of Nostrils according to Waxing & Waning Moon

Three days starting from 1st day of waxing moon (new moon to full moon) starting left nostril to right nostril, and three days starting from 1st day of waning moon (full moon to new moon) starting right nostril to left nostril. That means on 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 7th, 8th, 9th, 13th, 14th and 15th day (full moon) at sunrise left nostril is active first. And on 4th, 5th, 6th, 10th, 11th, 12th day at sunrise starts right nostril is active.

Similarly, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 7th, 8th, 9th, 13th, 14th and 15th day toward new moon, at sunrise right nostril is active first. And 4th, 5th, 6th, 10th, 11th and 12th day at sunrise left nostril is active.

And so on, starting from left nostril for an hour to right for an hour, the breathing pattern is such a regular activity for a healthy human being just as the movement of celestial bodies.

If one understand the flow of breath and map it through the movement of moon, one can easily understand the body pattern. When the left nostril is active, one is usually calmer and stable, on the other hand when right nose is active, one has more heat, aggression and is ready for more physical activity.

Activities to do when Left Nostril is Active:

When the left nose is active, here are some type of activities that are preferable i.e. any auspicious activity, permanent actions or decisions, purchasing jewelry & clothes, long distance journey, construction of house, offices and temple etc, marriages, religious rights, peaceful work and surgeries etc.

Activities to do when Right Nostril is Active:

Kind of activities preferred when the right nose is active are tantra techniques, wars, tamsik (dark energy) activities like drinking wine or eating non-vegetarian food, Sensual pleasures, Physical work, mathematics and eating food etc.

Activities to do when Both Nostrils are Active:

When the breath of both left and nostrils flows together, which usually occurs at the edge of transfer of breath from left to right nostril and from right to left nostril, is a moment of silence, of yoga & Shiva, no worldly activity is recommended. The moment is to get detached from worldly activities and spend a few moments in meditation.

If we can harmonize our daily activity based on the flow of breath, one can live a long, balanced and healthy life.

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