Harilal Gandhi was addicted to alcohol . He tried in vain to give up drinking but could never kick the habit and eventually succumbed to the lethal disease called alcoholism . He also used to smoke . Gandhiji’s son also committed adultery. and for a brief while was converted to Islam and was known as Abdullah Gandhi , much to the chagrin of his illustrious parents.
” I had very little opportunity to be very close to him,but the little time I spent with him convinced me that he was not a bad man. I regard him to be the most intelligent of the four sons of Bapuji. He was very humorous,very generous and very hospitable ; yet he was given to drinking . Why?Who is to be blamed?” writes Saraswati K Gandhi ( Harilal’s daughter-in -law). Perhaps it was the troubled relationship with the Mahatma that derailed Harilal’s life.
Tobacco and excessive consumption of alcohol lead to severe physical and psychological disorders . It has a deleterious and debilitating effect on the human body. Any individual can be addicted to sex, substance,food(bulimia) ,cinema, television or even social media. Such addictions weaken our resolve and diminish our aura. It depletes our physical and mental energy.
Talking of smoking , our parliamentarians came up with outlandish theories stating that there is inadequate Indian evidence to correlate tobacco and cancer .
WHO estimates that tobacco caused 6.4 million deaths in 2014 and 100 million deaths over the course of the 20th century. Similarly , the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention describes tobacco as “the single most important preventable risk to human health in developed countries and important cause of premature death worldwide.”
Smoking is a major risk factor for heart attacks,strokes,chronic obstructive pulmonary disease(COPD) including emphysema and chronic-bronchitis and cancer(particularly lung cancer , cancers of larynx and mouth, and pancreatic cancer).Cigarettes sold in underdeveloped countries tend to have higher tar content , and are less likely to be filtered ,potentially increasing vulnerability to tobacco smoking related diseases in these regions.
Given this grim scenario how does one quit smoking and those addicted to Bacchus give up drinking? . With my wretched experience with relented smoking and drinking , I would recommend the courses of Art Of Living as a palliative for these addictions.
We need to breathe properly to overcome these vices. The pivot of Art Of Living Courses is the unique breathing technique called the Sudarshan Kriya.
Sudarshan Kriya harmonises the rhythms of the body , emotions and puts them back in tune with the rhythms of nature. Being in sync , we feel positive about ourselves ,love flows naturally in all relationships( say what was lacking between MK Gandhi and Harilal Gandhi). Sudarshan Kriya technique enables us to skilfully use the breath to change the way we feel , and start having a say over our emotions . It reinforces the default rhythm within an individual and negative emotions of discomfort , discontent , unhappiness get purged.
Regular practice of Sudarshan Kriya , pranayama , yoga and meditation brings about a 360 degree change in the personality of an addict or a person who is only looking back in anger .
A renowned cardiologist from Hyderabad Dr Ramachandra of Sri Sri Holistic Hospitals recommends Sudarshan Kriya to all his patients for quick rehab . Further he opines this breathing technique is almost like hyperventilation and relaxes an individual tremendously . Continuous practice puts a person in an auto mode(default mode of the nature).
We are beset with almost 50000 thousand thoughts a day . Most of them are negative in nature . Sri Sri Ravi Shankar(founder of Art Of Living ) says breath is like a string and your mind is like a kite . Proper breathing ensures you float and not crash land in the journey of our lives.
So let us breathe our problems away.
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