Discover the Laughter
Do never miss a chance to laugh but only when it does not hurt others feelings as this laughter is the priceless natural outcome of cheer, rarely availed by modern men and women loaded with formalities of so called civilized life. This overloading burden of modern civilization and its manners has snatched away our natural existence. Though we know that a cheerful man decorated with a peal of laughter is a center of attraction and even the company of such man adds life to others.
Cheer, the root source of beauty from the face of modern man is disappearing because of the fears of the karmas (actions); he has been cultivating resulting into uncertainties that he bears in life. The real beauty, tranquility and balance of mind & body are the rewards of tense free transparent life only. On the other hand this multi face life full of stress and tension leads man to the loss of real beauty, life span and harmony in social life. In an effort of struggle for looking happy and satisfied he has to go for an artificial living. There is a vast difference between looking happy and being happy. This artificial living compels him or her to find different artificial sources of beauty. Such sources of artificial beauty still leads men to loss of natural health, beauty and force of life.
Modern man in search for his Anand meye swaroopa opts for television serials, theatre etc and gossip with friends or the family members but it is all amusement and diversion only that has nothing to do with Anand (bliss). The essence of all ‘Rasas’ is ‘Anand’ or ‘bliss’ and it is Ananda that leads the individual to ‘Haas’ and ‘Nartanam’ i.e. Laughter and Dance. This dance and laughter is the outcome of ‘Anand’. The Divine presence can be realized in the dancing and cheering existence of everything in this universe as ‘He is the life of our life’. Everything in this world is in dancing form even the earth itself so everything on earth, the trees, birds, animal and people, each wave of the vast ocean, the rays of the sun and even the smallest molecule is full of life, laughter and dance. We too are ‘Ananda maye’ or full of bliss. We are the undying consciousness and energy flowing everywhere. This fact is to be remembered always to keep away the sins and sorrows. Holy Vedas say “The cosmic soul is truly the whole universe, the immortal source of all creation, all action and all meditation. Who ever reach Him, hidden deep within himself, cuts through the bonds of ignorance even during his life on earth.” To understand Chitta (consciousness), Buddhi (intellectual mind) and Ahamkara (ego or ‘I’ maker) we perform Yogabhyas not only each day but all the time. This spiritual discipline is known as Sadhana.
For rapid and continuous progress on the path of Yog Sadhana it should be performed regularly without fail ideally before dawn. Yog sadhna is not a burden but simply a sure effort to eradicate sorrows from the life and come closer to your real self, the blissful one. ‘Haas’ generally expressed as ‘Attahasa’ or free laughter is the most important part of it. It makes the journey easier as it allows us to remain Sehej or unaffected. The innocent child, free from any formalities is filled with perfect health only because he is very close to his original face ‘Sehej swaroop’ away from any worry. He can laugh aloud when he is full of cheer and weep whenever in fear. He will never pretend to present himself brave with strokes of fear inside, cool with the flames of anger at mind or what he is not in real. His innocent transparent behavior is the ideal for those who wish to maintain themselves full of life.
Natural laughter has got two parts, one is spontaneous and the second is just a response to humor that has physiological, psychological and physical benefits. Spontaneous laughter leads us to bliss ultimately as it is Sehej’ and innocent away from any formality. Different styles of laughter reveal our inner state of mind. You may well understand it better with the example of “Sholay” the Indian blockbuster film and its three dacoits finally shot dead by Gabbar Singh with the sympathetic version “Tera kya hoga re Kalia?” Generally we laugh when we find something humorous. It is also true that that different reasons exist for what we find to be humorous. Moreover different things are humorous to us at different stages of life. In this film you must have found that laughter as a physiological response to humor takes part at two levels. The first is gestures and the second is production of sound. Both the things have got their marvelous significance.
From physiological point of view a sensor in the brain responds to laughter by triggering other neural circuits in the brain which in turn generates more laughter. The supreme quality of laughter is when the tears of joy make even the voice silent resulting into absolute silence at later stage, but the complete existence of the yoga aspirant is thrilled with inner laughter and he is in tune with the cosmic laughter and dance. Such stage can lead one to a trance even. Laughter occurs spontaneously during pauses at the end of phrases, earning it the name the punctuation effect. Human beings are the only species capable of laughter, and findings disclose that the average adult does so approximately 17 times a day.
Laughter has a bucket full of multiple benefits and good health is the top benefit we gain from laughter as it reduces our stress levels by reducing the level of stress hormones. It also helps wonderfully to cope with serious diseases. Physiologically free laughter promotes healing in a wonderful way by lowering the blood pressure, by increasing the vascular blood flow and the oxygenation of the blood. This simple action properly adapted also improves digestive, respiratory and nervous systems.
Physical fitness gained through laughter is the more stable as it works not only with the muscular system but also adds thrill and real beauty to your personality. Scientists have experienced that laughing 100 times is equivalent to a 10 minute workout on a rowing machine or 15 minutes on a stationary exercise bike. The act of free laughter exercises the diaphragm, rectus abdominal, facial, leg and back muscles of your body. Wonderfully enough this laughter has proved a boon in improving overall mental health. I have applied it in different institutes of public administration, police, military and paramilitary forces and even in jails to eradicate negative emotions like anger, fear and sadness from the lives of our officers and jawans and to equip them with positive approach in life and bring a qualitative change to their work efficiency as such negative emotions do bring biochemical changes leading them to harmful effect. Laughter at different rhythms and styles has proved the best medicine in different problems. It provides a harmless outlet for such negative emotions and provides a coping mechanism for dealing with difficult and stressful situations.
Just to avail the benefit of this wonderful divine gift of laughter in day to day life some of our yog sadhaks have formed ‘Laughter Clubs’ also in some big cities to laugh in different styles to benefit the different organs but the effect of natural laughter ‘Sehej haas’ is always deeper and this Haas is not the result of material satisfactions but it is invoked from within. The only thing a yoga enthusiast has to do is to see that no worldly business should be allowed at the cost of free laughter. Such tense free transparent laughter will blend in divine laughter one day.