Laughter, Creativity and the Inner Child
Inside us adults, there is our inner child, clamoring for attention, wanting to play, wanting to be loved, appreciated and acknowledged.
Michael Brown, author of The Presence Process (which I use every day), says we left our inner child behind when we entered the “responsible” world of adulthood.
Our inner child wants the best for us, wants to help us to create a wondrous, joyous, ecstatic, fulfilling life. We ignore its input, its contribution because of its “childishness.”
Yet, it is just that childlike nature that can serve our higher and true calling in life.
At last night’s Laughter Yoga class, each of us created a new laughter exercise. The inner child in each of us (we were 6 in number) felt safe enough to contribute, felt safe enough to come out and play. And oh, what play. We had a glorious time.
Since reading Dr. Ihaleakala Hew Len’s view on life, I have changed how I lead Laughter Yoga sessions, just a litte.
Dr. Len is a leader in the Hawaiian healing system known as Ho’Oponopono. He says we are either following a “script” set in our subconscious mind or we are following inspiration, our connection to the Divine.
His take is that the conscious mind or ego thinks it is in control. It is not. The conscious mind can take in about 15 bits of information per second. Meanwhile there are 50 million bits of information per second coming at us. The conscious mind doesn’t stand a chance, according to Dr. Len. It is pure illusion to think that we are in control of anything. Therefore, the only sane approach is to allow inspiration, our connection to the Divine, to guide us.
I still prepare for sessions. Last night, for example, I watched Sebastien Gendry’s sitting session on Vimeo and made notes about what he does. I used many of his ideas and then…watched to see what happens and used that to “come off script” and create an exercise on the spot.
As I did that, each of the participants also started creating. It was as if we were all allowing space and permission for the inner child in each of us to come out and play.
Our inner child is naturally creative. By allowing that creativity to shine forth, each of us can have access to the joy we deserve and the energy and health that flows from that joy.
It was a true delight. Each of us took home a warm and fuzzy inner smile.
It truly is an honour and a privilege to lead Laughter Yoga sessions.
Thank you Sebastien and thank you, thank you Dr. Kataria for creating the space for all of us.
With that in mind, the James Bay Community Centre sessions will restart on April 14th, Thursdays at 6pm.
These are not drop in sessions and that is what makes them so unique. We all get to know each other better. One person made the comment last night about how we have gotten to know each others’ laugh and that is setting us off so easily during laughter meditation.
I encourage you to consider signing up for a full multi week session and see what happens to your own creativity, your joy and the energy and health that flows from that.
Thanks to Kate Roxborough for creating this group and notice that Kate has other groups in the area that also sign up for multi week sessions. Check them out on our site at: Victoria Laughter Yoga Schedule: https://victorialaughteryogaclub.wordpress.com/laughter-schedule/
For Leaders and Teachers and all interested laughers: Here is Sebastien’s video on his sitting laughter session. Great ideas:
Melanie is a Laughter Yoga Leader who appears on my Facebook page all the time. She has a wonderful site with many great and inspiring articles. Check it out here: http://www.laughteryogamelanie.com/
World Laughter Day Coming Up Soon
This year, we are partnering with Esquimalt Rec Centre and will be holding World Laughter Day in one of Esquimalt’s Parks. I have requested Saxe Pointe Park as the first choice, if it is available on Sunday, May 1st. Plan is for it be between 2 and 3pm again.
More details to follow. In the meantime, you can mention it to friends as a friendly, easy place to try out Laughter Yoga.
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and email marketing will be in place and you will be encouraged to pass the info on to your network.
Media releases will be going out as well. If you have friends in the media, let them and me know and we can connect them to the info.
Any other marketing ideas are welcome to help get the word out.
Physiology of Breathing Dr. Madan Kataria, January 2011
Breathing is very fundamental to our life. We can live without food and water for several days but we can not survive without breathing even for few minutes. According to yoga the energy of life (life energy force) flows from the universal energy through our breath. Medically this energy of life can be equated with oxygen which is the basis of all metabolic activities and functioning of enzymes systems in our body cells. The lack of proper breathing is the root cause of less oxygen supply to our body cells.
Dual function of Breathing
Breathing is the only automatic process which has dual function. It goes automatic like heart beat under autonomic centers of the brain as well as it can be changed at will. With our deliberate conscious mind we can prolong the breath, shorten it or even hold the breath. By changing the way we breathe, we can change physiological functions at will. By moving our respiratory muscles we can expand our breathing capacity and increase the amount of oxygen to our body.
How prolonged Exhalation brings more oxygen
In order to understand how Laughter Yoga helps to improve oxygen to our body cells we need to understand physiology of breathing. Total normal capacity of human (male) lung is 6 Liters (6000ml) plus or minus 20%, depending upon the gender and body frame. Out of total 6 Liters capacity, lungs retain a 1200 ml to keep the lung cells called alveoli inflated. This is called residual air that can not be removed. Therefore, one can move up to 4800 ml of air in and out of lungs. This is called Forced Vital Capacity or FVC. But not everyone has the capability of using full 6 Litres capacity. Deep divers, swimmers and other athletes train themselves to utilize more than average capacity of their lungs.
During the normal breathing cycle (respiration), we inhale and exhale up to 500 ml to 700 ml of air (called Tidal Volume). Normally, we leave 2400 ml of air in the lungs as Reserve Volume after the tidal breath out. Out of 2400ml we can only force exhale 1200 ml as other 1200 ml is required to keep lung cells inflated that can not be exhaled. Therefore with laughter exercises we can get rid of extra 1200 ml of stale air which when replace by fresh air give more amount of oxygen. The inhaled air is oxygen rich, whereas the residual air stale and stagnant and has more CO2. Effective emptying of our lungs depends upon the effective use of diaphragm which is the major muscle of respiration. Laughter yoga exercises followed by deep diaphragmatic breathing helps us to renew the residual air in the lungs and that increases the net supply of oxygen to our body cells.
Also with deep breathing exercises we do in Laughter Yoga session we can force inhale up to 2500ml to 3000 ml (2.5L to 3L) of air which can increase net supply of oxygen.
Due to shallow breathing many of alveoli in the lungs (the air cells) do not expand fully and do not participate in respiration. Deep breathing exercises keep them open to participate in gas exchange to increase the supply of oxygen. The exchange of gases that take place in your lungs is called pulmonary respiration.
Ultimately we need oxygen for metabolism. The oxygen that is transferred to blood stream from inhaled air is utilized in mitochondria in the body cells (including brain cells) to generate energy by oxidation of glucose through a process called metabolism. This is called tissue respiration.
Brain is an amazingly hungry organ – it is only 2% of the human body weight, yet it consumes 20% of the energy mitochondria produces and requires more than 25% of the oxygen out of the blood stream. Many experiments have shown that one can increase brain alertness by either increasing glucose supply to the brain or the supply of oxygen to make the energy production more efficient. Deep breathing helps with the better oxygen supply.
Therefore your ability to breathe deeply depends upon you ability to exhale longer so as to empty the lungs and get rid of residual air which has more stale air with CO2. Also proper expansion of thoracic cavity. Laughter Yoga is an art of exhaling longer and that helps you exhale CO2 stagnant residual air from the lungs and hence increase the oxygen supply to your body and the brain. Laughter yoga is based on age old yogic wisdom of prolonged exhalation helps us to bring more oxygen to the body and brain. Imagine thousands of years ago no one knew about physiology of breathing but yogis knew by the way of experience that prolonged exhalation is the way to bring more oxygen to your body cells.
Exhaling longer than inhalation might take some practice and efforts but laughing for no reason is the easiest way to force your stale air out of your longs in order to get more oxygen to your body cells. The iconic posture of Laughter Yoga, laughing by Spreading arms up towards the sky allows chest to expand, so lungs get more space to expand. Laughing from the belly helps to move your Diaphragm efficiently and expand the abdomen so lungs get more space to expand.
* Victoria Laughter Yoga Club site:
* Founder Dr. Madan Kataria’s site:
* Laugh along daily with Matti with his Fr ee laughter video…Plus f r e e email course: “108 Tips for more Joy, Energy and Health”
Click here: http://joyenergyandhealth.com/
* Sebastien Gendry’s awesome site:
* Melanie Rudolph’s site: http://www.laughteryogamelanie.com/
Matti Anttila, Certified Laughter Yoga Teacher
Victoria Laughter Yoga Clubs
Laughter Yoga is the unique concept that we can laugh for no reason at all.
* Laughter exercises send endorphins (feel good hormones) to the brain.
* Yoga breathing: more oxygen to brain and body equals:
* Feeling healthier and more energetic.
* Sessions are led by a certified Laughter Yoga Leader.
* Non-profit, non-religious, non-political
110-174 Wilson Street Victoria, BC, Canada V9A 7N7
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