This blog post is a little back story as far as HOW I ended up writing my newly released e-book "How to Use Breathwork to Improve Your Relationships and Enhance Your Sex Life" which can be download via Amazon Kindle here.
First of all, I'd like to say that the inspiration for writing this book came through a really powerful "download" at a time where I wasn't necessarily planning to write and publish a book, let alone one with such a strong title and purpose.
Truth be told, I had difficulty in accepting that this would be the title of my first ever book. I've started and stopped several other writing projects but never came to a completion with any of them, probably because none of them were sufficiently impactful. I wanted my first book to carry a clear and direct message. If I was going to publish something for the first time, I wanted to make sure that it reached the right audience with the right intention and that it left a "good" imprint.
Interestingly, when the title came through, I was smacked with the sort of obviousness of it. I decided to accept the mission.
"How to Use Breathwork to Improve Your Relationships and Enhance Your Sex Life".
What a title, eh?
Sometimes I wonder what my parents think when they see how my life has evolved. From leaving home at 18, to then leaving my career job at 25, to traveling to India on a one-way ticket at 26, to moving to Costa Rica at 30 ... now publishing a book with the culturally charged word SEX right there in its title at age 32. I've lived an adventurous life to say the least. And that is exactly why I chose to write this book -- because a large part of my adventuring has been inward, through the Breath. What I've found in taking the repeated inward journey has been nothing short of extraordinary and I want to share these findings with anyone who has the interest. Having a published Amazon Kindle book electronically accessible anywhere in world is helping me to spread a light that has been slowly emerging from within ever since I started taking the leap towards a different way of living. For that, I am so grateful.
Anyways... where were we? What is the back story to this book?
I guess I can start by talking a bit about Breathwork and it's impact on my life, as well as those I've taught in this area. For those who don't know, I've been a yoga teacher for years -- since 2015 to be exact. Festivals, retreats, workshops, trainings, all the stuff. It's been my full-time gig. Somehow I've managed to really create my ideal life throughout all of this. It's not easy being an entrepreneur in an alternative science, you know? Carving out a different way of living and being in the world than the norm. I've had my challenges but I wouldn't trade it for anything. I am grateful for my life... it's pretty amazing. And I attribute nearly all of my successes -- both on the material level and the spiritual -- to my advancements and progress in my breathing practices. Seriously.
Because I know that it is the breathing that regulates and develops the nervous system better than nearly any other modality. At least, better than any modality that I've come across. And there are plenty of examples and proof to validate this. Which is precisely why I have so much love for the yogic path; the yogis were spiritual scientists who sincerely & practically documented the journey of enlightenment, and especially the Hatha Yogis who were all about cultivating an empowered and robust nervous system that could sustain higher and more powerful energies.
What I've found in my studies & practices of Yoga has been incredible. So much of my life is completely different than it once was due to my consistency and dedication on this path. Due to the profound transformative and healing abilities of yogic practices, I continue to dedicate most of my time and effort towards creating opportunities for others to learn and integrate these incredible teachings into their lives as well.
I believe so deeply within my being that it is through regulated, well-tuned and grounded nervous systems that our society will be able to advance more effectively. When we know we can gather our energy together, stabilize it, increase our sensitivity to it, and then direct it at will, we will start to have a clearer path forward. Both as individuals and as a collective. This will have an impact on every area of our life, especially our relationships and sex life.
Our relationships suffer for one fundamental reason -- our inability to remain present and LISTEN. We have difficulty attuning to other's needs. We are unable to be comfortable in stressful or uncomfortable situations and this causes us to act out and repeat behaviors that we'd rather not repeat. The past re-creates itself. In order to attune ourselves to the moment, we must learn how to regulate our bodies and minds to be absolutely and unconditionally present. Breathing is a powerful tool to do this.
Secondly, our sexual energy is leaking out without clear boundaries. Men and women, who have a natural polarity with one another, are unable to control and direct this energy for good or for "higher purposes" and instead allow it to spill into each other's fields. There is a subtle aggression here that must be mentioned that is often not named, and it is the aggressive tendency of sexual energy that has not been mastered. Until we can overcome our lustful desires for carnal pleasure -- that is, pleasures of the flesh and sensory indulgence -- these desires will causes us to operate in mostly unconscious ways. They will zap our presence and cause us to behave selfishly. Why? Because this (sexual) energy that is going down through us wants to find its way back to the ground. It will do this at all cost... unless we learn to harness and redirect it, which is entire possible through yogic methods such as Breathwork. When we harness and redirect it, instead of going downwards towards the Earth, it can travel back upwards and enlighten the brain. This enlightenment process is a biological phenomenon in which the sexual chemistry is sublimated and re-absorbed for different purposes. This is not to say that sex never happens -- that would be boring! But the sexual act itself takes on a different quality and purpose. This entire process is about learning how to NOT allow our animal behavior to 'take over' and run the show, but to maintain a degree of consciousness and control that can then direct this powerful flow of primal energy. When THIS takes place in the human system, our energy becomes far more contained and SAFE. We are safer to be around, because we have mastered our basic impulses. We are less like animals and more like the divine creatures we truly are.
The book doesn't go into specific details on too much of this, which is why I plan to write a BONUS chapter to make sure these concepts get ironed out for those who are unfamiliar or still unclear. But the book DOES give practices and an overview of what we are trying to accomplish with our breathing, which by consequence leads to what I was discussing above.
The important thing to note is that there is FAR more happening than merely "Breathwork". When the energy starts to become contained within, the ecstatic condition of the human being increases drastically. This happens because, instead of the energy leaking out through the doors of the senses, that energy goes within and finds a resting place in the body. We have to understand that the doors of the senses open to the world and allow stimuli in. When this external stimuli is shut off, the possibility for pleasure doesn't go away... we still have the receptors within us for joy! However, we are no longer dependent on the chemical stimulus from the outer world to trigger our ecstasy. A powerful transition to make in life.... to self-source joy. And a possibility for us all, as we learn how to cultivate a well contained nervous system. One that is stable, sensitive, and the ability to direct at will.
Obviously there is a lot more than can be said here, but I think this is enough for today. If you haven't gotten the book yet, grab your digital copy through Amazon Kindle. You can use the link at the top or search my name "Grant Ifflander" in Amazon to find it.
You are also invited to join for the weekly sessions that are happening pretty regularly; at the moment, every Wednesday at 10 AM CST we Breathe together live via Zoom. You can learn more or sign up here. Use coupon code "welcometothesangha" for a FREE first session or "sangha" if you're returning for $5 off.
Many blessings on your path of enlightening your body and mind back into its natural and ecstatic condition -- a condition that has been lost due to the comforts of modern life. Let's return to our primal state. One that is naturally joyous and filled with enthusiasm for life. This is a possibility for us all... breathing can help.
See you soon, yogis.
Here's to an extraordinary life,
Grant T. Ifflander