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Anger, Ayurveda, and Emotional Healing

By Nirbho Atma Kaur/Honey Bee

Have you ever vividly felt the signs that you are getting angry? I remember so clearly the first time I truly paid attention to what was happening when I got angry. As a young child, I had two girls come up to me and hand me a note. The note said that they didn’t want to be my friend because they thought I was lying to them.

When I got handed this, and knew in my heart that I was truthful, I felt my heart start to beat really fast, my breath deepen, my jaw tightened, my body started to sweat, and tears came to my eyes. Since then, I have encountered anger towards others and towards myself. Sometimes the reasons for my anger took awhile for me to uncover. 

I never had an outlet to deal with my anger growing up. I was never taught to express anger in a healthy way. When I found the power of breathing, meditation, and yoga, I was able to confront and elevate this emotion to something greater than myself. I’ve learned that experiencing anger is healthy, and there are ways to understand anger through Kundalini Yoga and Ayurveda. 

After I began my work at an Ayurveda Health Retreat teaching yoga and cooking, I understood that in Ayurveda—the sister science of yoga—excess heat in the body, irritability, and anger lead to an imbalance in the pitta dosha, which consists of the elements fire and water.

A person who is predominantly pitta is light, hot, sharp, clear, and subtle. Excess in pitta can cause a person to be fiery. This manifests throughout the body, with heat, and strong digestion. In the emotions, you see this as anger. When a person becomes imbalanced, they usually crave things that will increase their imbalance. For example, if a person is already angry and has a strong digestive fire, then they may crave spicy foods and lean towards competitive sports. 

The simplest of things, such as one life experience can put your pitta dosha out of balance. If you live in a culture that supports this rush of life, it is important that you find a grounding time to slow down, and nourish your body, mind and spirit. 

I have personally found that most Kundalini Yoga sets increase pitta, so when I notice that my pitta is high, I take steps to stabilize. One thing that has helped me tremendously is having a daily routine. The simplicity of starting and ending my day in a spiritual way enables me to go about my day with intention and relaxation.

Every day I incorporate nourishing foods and a calming spiritual practice of Kundalini Yoga, breath work, and meditation. With my tendency to become out of balance in the pitta dosha, I incorporate practices to keep me in balance and in alignment with my higher self such as those listed below.

Eat Cooling, Nourishing Foods

Especially in summer, I am mindful of foods that may aggravate my pitta such as sour, fermented, or spicy foods. I am drawn to foods that will help energize and cool me down like a room temperature beet salad, or sweet potato and quinoa salad. I do my best to eat these meals at a consistent time each day when I am hungry, in order to maintain a daily routine.

Spiritual Practice

Yoga

I relate to that person out there who says that they don’t have time to develop or partake in a spiritual practice. It’s been an ongoing effort to put myself first each morning with a child, a job, and all the technology begging for my attention. Since I finished my Kundalini Training in 2017, I devote myself to staying true to my spiritual practice because the benefits spread throughout every area of my life.

Kundalini Yoga has taught me to be the woman I’ve always felt deep in my soul I could be. It has taught me to be the fearless teacher that can give value to others. I have found my voice of truth. Ultimately, I am aligned with my spirit when I show up every day at the altar. I encourage all who are feeling the heaviness of life, or the weighing down of daily tasks, to commit to a yoga practice. Whether it is self-guided or guided by a teacher, Kundalini Yoga is there to show you the calm in the storm, the darkness in the light, and the truth of who you are. 

If you don’t know where to start, try this kriya: Kriya to Relieve Inner Anger

 “Kundalini Yoga develops the neutral, intuitive, comprehensive mind. You sharpen the intellect and do not use it to create self-doubt or insecurity. You act with grace and commitment from your heart.”
-Yogi Bhajan

Breath Work

“You live by the breath. You can get everything from your breath of life.”
-Yogi Bhajan

Breathing is your source of life force. Prana has the ability to transform anger into passion. The breath has the capacity to cool you down in the most heated of situations. There are two breathing exercises I love that help me balance a pitta imbalanced mind and body. 

Sitali Pranayam

Soothing Left Nostril Breath

Meditation

I have noticed that people get angry about situations in the past, or things that are out of their control. In the chaotic times that we live in, a key tool is to learn how to approach each day with a calm and clear heart. Meditation is a path to clear the way for you to see things as they really are, and not with the blurred vision of anger or other emotional trauma.

One meditation I love to do and teach in my classes is Meditation for a Calm Heart. As simple as it is, it allows a person to connect with their center, their highest self. At the same time, they are receptive to the wisdom all around them. Give this meditation a chance next time you feel like you're carrying a backpack of emotional commotion.

As a collective psyche, healing our emotional traumas is a huge step in raising this planet’s vibration. As an individual, it is your responsibility to look inside, no matter how ugly it is, and approach your anger with love and compassion. It is your responsibility to give yourself the opportunity to heal through transforming anger and letting it go.

Every once in a while, we all need to make a deposit into our emotional bank account. These tools can help you take that step towards investing in your emotional health. 

Nirbho Atma Kaur (aka Honey Bee) is a Certified Health Education Specialist, Kundalini Yoga Teacher and Radiant Child Yoga Teacher. Her passion is to give people the gift of connection to their inner technology and manage their outer digital life. She does this through her writing, transformational workshops, retreats, and children's classes. Nirbho Atma will be publishing her first book in 2019 on how to balance spiritual life and digital life while entering adulthood. Learn more and connect with her at WholeHeartConnections.com or https://www.facebook.com/honeybeewhc

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