Fire and Air-Cleansing

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In Yoga as well as rebirthing there exist different techniques of cleansing the body and mind. Air cleansing for example is a conscious way of breathing like Pranayama and rebirthing. It rids the body of toxins and fills it up with energy. Fire cleansing on the other hand is done by exposing ones body to the fire. Simply sitting with it the fire the burns away lot of pollution and negativity, clearing both body and mind.

So today I received my initiation into purification with air.

My first rebirthing session was given to me by Paula. It was physically very demanding for me. Keeping the breath up in a continuous flow of in and outbreath and not falling asleep had been a fight. Due to the effort I started to sweat intensely (it seems miraculous that I didn´t drown in the puddle that formed up beneath me). Again and again I fell asleep, got dizzy, but Paula kept me going, telling me to open my eyes, moving my arms and even getting up to keep me awake. The whole process was intense and took lots of energy. Nothing emotional had shown up but I felt that a lot of physical purification had been going on. My lifestyle had not been the healthiest before I I came to Virginia and it was not such a wonder that toxins had to be released at some point. When I came back after a very deep period of thoughtless relaxation, I felt as after a hangover. My body was depleted of energy, I had a headache, felt cold and nauseous and at the same time peaceful, grateful and relaxed. After the session Leonard came by with pancakes and Marple syrup, real American food. It was amazing to meet him. He is still very charismatic now at the age of 79 years when he appears to have aged a lot, skinny and weak but still possessing a very sharp, intriguing and curious mind. He told us exciting stories about the beginning of rebirthing and how he traveled the world in search of sages and Yogis.

The next day, Sunday was fasting and fire day. When I got up I felt horrible. I still felt nauseous and on top of that I had been unable to sleep all night. The rebirthing process had stirred up something from within me. At nine in the morning Katka drove the three of us, Vardha, Ayumi and me to Leonard´s property. Once we had arrived there, we were guided to our fire places, where we stayed silently until dusk. I gathered kindling and wood, which was hard due to my weak condition. Cutting and sawing took more than the usual effort, still feeling sick. Then I piled up the wood and lighted it up. The flames flared up nicely and soon after a big fire was burning.

With a bottle of water and a pack of coconut water I sat down next to it. I had planed to read books and meditate with the fire, but my condition didn´t allow it. On top of that I had to feed the fire every 10 minutes as I made such a big, hungry one. Typical caveman behavior, I wanted to have the biggest fire in town. Vardha must have felt the same way, as he himself was busy cutting wood most of the time too. Only Ayumi, the smart woman she is, had a small fire and therefore a lot of time to sit next to it and simply enjoy it. At some point I finally realized my vanity and also got lazy. Maybe it was also due to the fact, that I sweated like a pig and my shoes almost burned, when I sensed the smell of melting plastic. Now I allowed the fire to burn down further and kept it smaller. Even though I wasn´t doing much but sitting next to the fire now and still sweating, time passed quickly and I enjoyed the meditative presence atmosphere. Around six at night we came back to the center purified and exhausted from not having eaten and chopping so much wood.

Yes I slept so well that night.

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