How to do holotropic



Keywords: meditation,self-discovery,ritual,stanislav grof,holotropic breathing
Description: Do It Yourself - Holotropic Breathwork I had the wonderful chance to participate in a three day Holotropic Breathing Workshop of two very experienced and spiritually evolved german therapists. Even...

I had the wonderful chance to participate in a three day Holotropic Breathing Workshop of two very experienced and spiritually evolved german therapists. Even though I had created my own personal breathing sessions at home in the past, it was a completely new and impressive adventure. Because I loved the whole ritual that came out of this group meeting, I can’t stop myself from sharing it with you. I know how expensive these workshops usually are, so I hope this knowledge inspires you to create your very own breathing sessions at home.

First of all, find at least one partner that wants to explore their consciousness as much as you do. Every breather needs to have one sitter. You can do this in a group with as many people as you like, as long as you feel comfortable opening up in front of everyone. Sometimes it is good to have one extra sitter that guides the whole group through the experience and helps sitters in case they need support.

When the group meets, build a room together in which you all feel comfortable. Create yourself a place with blankets, mattresses and pillows, just the way you like it. Whether you are the breather or the sitter, make sure you feel warm and safe. Build these places in a circle, with the feet pointed to the center. The energy will not only flow through each person individually, but also throughout the room itself, so avoid any unnecessary objects or electronic media. Make sure to have water and some food. Put candles on around the room and dim the light. In the center of your room create a place of peace and union by using candles and incense. Once your room feels like a warm womb, you are ready to go. Make sure nothing and no one can interrupt your session.

Before everyone crawls underneath their blankets, come together in the center of the room. Each breather writes down a wish, a topic or a problem on a piece of paper that they would like to work on during the session. Those papers stay anonymously and you don’t need to share them if you don’t want to. Crumple your piece of paper and put it in a metal bowl in the very center of the room. Burn all papers together in the bowl, while you create a circle of energy by holding your hands. If everyone in the group is familiar with it, you can also sing mantras until the fire goes out. This short group meditation brings everyone together and helps the breather to be balanced before their journey.

Now you can continue and start the actual breathing session. As I said before, every breather gets one sitter that sits down next to them. Music will be your main guidance, so make sure to choose wisely. Start with something slow and calm, like shamanic drums or soft tribal music. Speed the music up to support an intensity of the experience. Choose something a little chaotic or crazy to push and provoke the breather through sound. After some time of chaos, go back to something more soothing and let it fade out slowly. The music will also define the length of your session! If you have a one hour session have the first 15 minutes as a slow intro, 30 minutes powerful music and another 15 minutes coming down. You can find many music examples online, even though I think you know best what can support your session.

When the music begins, the breather slowly changes their way of breathing, deep into the stomach and without breaks. You don’t need to fasten your breath, rather let it flow naturally and only make sure to skip the short breaks we normally make between our breaths. You can always change your speed and intensity of your breathing, just as you like. There is no force, and there is no right or wrong. The job of the sitter is mainly to be there if the breather asks for support, whether through holding a hand, getting some water or taking away/adding blankets, pillows etc. The more sensitive sitters can also support the experience through energy work. Lead energy towards the throat chakra, so the breather can express themselves more easily. Don’t forget that such sessions can become quite intense. Everything from a reliving of traumatic experiences, to orgasmic explosions, screams, crying or laughter can appear. Transpersonal visions are also very common. Cramps in the body might be painful, but are completely harmless. Try to go through it, your body and soul will thank you for it.

When the music fades out take as much time as you need to find back to your body. If wished, do a short root chakra meditation at the end of your session to be back here and grounded. Do not finish the session until everyone feels completely back to normal! If this takes an hour, so be it. Find yourself all back together in the center of the room and share your experiences, both the breathers and the sitters. You can now end your session for the day, or switch the breathers and sitters and go through the work a second time. If you decide to end it, write down or draw your experience. Expressing it creatively afterwards is a great help to integrate your gained wisdom. Stanislav Grof, one of the fathers of this breathing technique, suggests drawing a mandala artwork.

It sometimes can be hard to completely find back to your body. Make sure that you always have someone to turn to, also some days after the session, in case you need some extra talk to understand and integrate your experience. Speak openly about it to someone you trust, so your holotropic breathing sessions can fully reveal their positive qualities. And don’t be scared, there is no harm coming from oxygen.






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