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Hair and Beards
Kundalini Yoga Style

Notice that many famous yogis seem to do special things with their hair? Grown long, shaved off, tied in a knot everyone seems to do something exceptional. That's no accident, because hair has a lot of energy. Just look at how much attention goes to caring for hair in modern life. It's likely the first place our eyes are drawn when we meet someone. Hair care products outnumber coffee flavors at Starbucks.

The Beard and it's Purpose for Men

Guruka Singh explains the purpose of the beard for men
and why a woman doesn't normally have hair there.

Guru Singh - Your Hair and Sunlight

Guru Singh talks about how your hair is like an electric circuitry. You needs vitamin D which is absorbed directed from the sunlight into your hair and skin.

All About Hair, Yogi Style
 By Deva Kaur Khalsa

"Our hair fashions might be just a trend, but if we investigate, we may find that we have been depriving ourselves of one of the most valuable sources of energy for human vitality." Yogi Bhajan

Consider the possibility that the hair on your head is there to do more than just look good. Man is the only creature who grows longer hair on his head as he grows into adulthood. Left uncut, your hair will grow to a particular length and then stop all by itself at the correct length for you. From a yogic perspective, hair is an amazing gift of nature that can actually help raise the Kundalini energy (creative life force), which increases vitality, intuition, and tranquility.

Cut Hair
Long ago people in many cultures didn't cut their hair, because it was a part of who they were. There were no salons. Often, when people were conquered or enslaved, their hair was cut as a recognized sign of slavery. It was also understood that this would serve as punishment and decrease the power of those enslaved.

The bones in the forehead are porous and function to transmit light to the pineal gland, which affects brain activity, as well as thyroid and sexual hormones. Cutting bangs which cover the forehead impedes this process. When Genghis Khan conquered China, he considered the Chinese to be a very wise, intelligent people who would not allow themselves to be subjugated. He therefore required all women in the country to cut their hair and wear bangs, because he knew this would serve to keep them timid and more easily controlled.

As whole tribes or societies were conquered, cut hair became so prevalent that the importance of hair was lost after a few generations, and hairstyles and fashion grew to be the focus.

The science of hair was one of the first technologies given by Yogi Bhajan when he came to America. "When the hair on your head is allowed to attain its full, mature length, then phosphorous, calcium, and vitamin D are all produced, and enter the lymphatic fluid, and eventually the spinal fluid through the two ducts on the top of the brain.

This ionic change creates more efficient memory and leads to greater physical energy, improved stamina, and patience." Yogi Bhajan explained that if you choose to cut your hair, you not only lose this extra energy and nourishment, but your body must then provide a great amount of vital energy and nutrients to continually re-grow the missing hair.

In addition, hairs are the antennas that gather and channel the sun energy or prana to the frontal lobes, the part of the brain you use for meditation and visualization. These antennas act as conduits to bring you greater quantities of subtle, cosmic energy. It takes approximately three years from the last time your hair was cut for new antennas to form at the tips of the hair.

Kundalini Hair Care
In India, a Rishi is known as a wise one who coils his or her hair up on the crown of the head during the day to energize the brain cells, and then combs it down at night. A 'rishi knot' energizes your magnetic field (aura) and stimulates the pineal gland in the center of your brain.

"This activation of your pineal results in a secretion that is central to the development of higher intellectual functioning, as well as higher spiritual perception" (Yogi Bhajan). During the day, the hair absorbs solar energy, but at night it absorbs lunar energy. Keeping the hair up during the day and down at night aids in this process. Braiding your hair down at night will help your electromagnetic field balance out from the day.

Split Ends
Loose scattered hair can develop split ends. Instead of trimming them and losing your antennas, Yogi Bhajan recommends applying a small amount of almond oil to your hair overnight so that it can be absorbed before you wash it the next morning. Keeping your hair coiled on your crown and protected with a head covering during the day will help your antennas heal. If you have long hair, see if your experience is different when it is clean and coiled at your crown, or down and loose.

Wet Hair
One year after Winter Solstice, when Yogi Bhajan was sitting in our living room with wet hair, he explained that he was drying it before putting it up in order to avoid a headache. When you put your hair up wet, it will tend to shrink and tighten a bit and even break as it dries. A better idea is to occasionally take the time to sit in the sun and allow your clean, wet hair to dry naturally and absorb some extra vitamin D. Yogis recommend shampooing the hair every 72 hours (or more frequently if the scalp sweats a great deal). It can also be beneficial to wash your hair after being upset to help process emotions.

Wooden Comb
Yogis also recommend using a wooden comb or brush for combing your hair as it gives a lot of circulation and stimulation to the scalp, and the wood does not create static electricity, which causes a loss of the hair's energy to the brain. You will find that, if you comb your hair and scalp front to back, back to front, and then to the right and left several times, it will refresh you, no matter how long your hair is. All the tiredness of your day will be gone.

For women, it is said that using this technique to comb your hair twice a day can help maintain youth, a healthy menstrual cycle, and good eyesight.

If you are bald or balding, the lack of hair energy can be counteracted with more meditation. If you are finding some silver strands in your hair, be aware that the silver or white color increases the vitamins and energy flow to compensate for aging. For better brain health as you age, try to keep your hair as natural and healthy as you can.

Tagore's Hair
Yogi Bhajan told us this story about hair many years ago at Women's Camp in New Mexico: Recognize how beautiful and powerful your hair is—that when you keep it, you live a life of fulfillment in this world. When Rabindranath Tagore, the great poet who found God within himself, tried to meet a friend on a steamer ship, the friend didn't recognize him and so wrote him a letter. "We were on the same steamer, but I didn't find you."

Tagore said, "I was there." His friend said, "I understand you are now a God-realized man, and I would like to know what your first action was when you became aware of the Oneness in all?" Tagore said, "When I realized the Oneness of all, I threw my shaving kit into the ocean. I gave up my ego and surrendered to nature. I wanted to live in the form that my Creator has given me."

When humans allow their hair to grow, they are welcoming the maturity, the responsibility of being fully-grown, and fully powerful. That is why you will find grace and calmness in a person with uncut hair from birth, if it is kept well. The Creator has a definite reason for giving you hair.

It is said that when you allow your hair to grow to its full length and coil it on the crown of the head, the sun energy, pranic life force, is drawn down the spine. To counteract that downward movement, the Kundalini life energy rises to create balance.

In Yogi Bhajan's words, "Your hair is not there by mistake. It has a definite purpose, which saints will discover and other men will laugh at."

Deva Kaur Khalsa trains Kundalini Yoga Teachers and teaches Kundalini Yoga in South Florida.  She was a student of Yogi Bhajan for over 39 years.  She is co-owner of Yoga Source in Coral Springs, Florida


The Purpose of Hair

Guruka Singh and Gurumustuk discuss the challenges and purpose of keeping the hair uncut, and that one must experience this to fully understand it.

Healthy Hair
Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa, DN-C, RH

Notice that many famous yogis seem to do special things with their hair? Grown long, shaved off, tied in a knot everyone seems to do something exceptional. That's no accident, because hair has a lot of energy. Just look at how much attention goes to caring for hair in modern life. It's likely the first place our eyes are drawn when we meet someone. Hair care products outnumber coffee flavors at Starbucks.

The hair reflects the internal condition of the body. Healthy hair comes from a healthy body. In yogic thought, the hair is the extension of the shushumna, the etheric spine. It acts as an energy antenna and prana regulator to consolidate the energy coming through the chakras.

It connects us energetically to the environment. Renunciate yogis shave it off to disconnect from the day-to-day world. Householder yogis grow it long, to capture energy, and keep them grounded and engaged in the life of the world.

Yogis who grow long hair often cover it with a turban to keep it clean and organized. Left to grow long, and covered by a porous cloth, hair will accumulate some natural scalp oil.

This oil, exposed to the filtered sunlight, is a major source of vitamin D for the body. A hair covering will also help disciplined yogis stay modest and make it easier to remember to remain graceful in social situations.

Hair is a tissue, so the body never stops producing it to replace lost strands. When it reaches the proper genetic length for you body, it will get no longer, but only replace individual hairs. Think about the hair on your arms isn't three feet long, now, is it?

Allowing the hair to reach its natural length will save energy for the body, which does not then have to keep creating hair, which is made from minerals and protein that could be conserved for other purposes.

Gathering that long hair at crown of the head keeps it contained and the energy concentrated, aligned with the chakras. Yogis and yoginis tie it in a " rishi knot", or " joora", that sits atop the anterior fontanel for men, or the posterior fontanel for women.

Feeling dull and worn-out? To refresh yourself, take your hair down and comb it out. Then quickly tie it back up in the head cover. Ahh- a new look on life!

If you use remedies to help your hair stay healthy, remember that the changes will happen in the base of the hair shaft, and that hair grows slowly. You may not see the results of your efforts for months! In the world of hairy things, patience pays. Yoga says that hair is damaged by heat.

Falling or prematurely graying hair is a sign of too much heat, or excess metabolic rate, in the head. To keep your hair healthy, avoid anything that promotes heat, inflammation, or extreme intensity and stress. Engage in cooling activities, such as moonlight walks by the lake, and eat cooling foods like cucumber, celery, spearmint and melon.

Ayurveda offers several herbs that help keep hair healthy. Bringraj (Eclipta alba) is a master tonic for the hair. Bringraj is an herb that cools the metabolism, so it offsets the heat problem. Use 2-3 grams per day in capsules.

Chinese medicine has a related remedy, Han Lian Cao (Eclipta prostrata), that also cools the body and treats premature graying of the hair. Use up to 5 grams per day as capsules or tea.

Amla fruit (Emblica officinalis) is a famous Ayurvedic herb, and one of the most useful medicines in the Indian pharmacopoeia. It is considered to be one of the strongest rejuvenatives. It is an exceptionally rich source of vitamin C. Amla is the frontline anti-inflammatory herb, and is used for a wide variety of inflammatory conditions. It is considered to be the prime general herb to treat premature gray hair. Amla is the basis for the famous Ayurvedic rejuvenative jam, " chyavanprash."

As a long term, slow acting remedy for chronic inflammation, use 1-2 grams per day in capsules.

Known for centuries in Asia, brahmi (Centella asiatica) stimulates the growth of hair and nails, increases blood supply to the skin and increases protein growth (keratinization) in the skin and hair. Brew brahmi as a tea and drink 2-3 cups per day.

He shou wu root (Polygonum multiflorum), a Chinese tonic, is considered a superior medicine according to traditional Chinese medicine. Traditional Chinese medicine uses the root to treat premature aging, weakness, premature hair loss and graying and impotence. Brew a tea and take 2-3 cups per day.

Saw palmetto berry helps male pattern baldness. The biological process that contributes to saw palmetto's effect in prostate health is a key factor in male pattern baldness. The drug Propecia works through the same mechanism, so this is not surprising.

Many nutrients benefit hair health. Silica keeps the hair strong. It's common in food plants, or you can take it as a supplement. Use 3-4 grams of silicon dioxide daily. An assortment of minerals make up the hair tissue.

Usually a daily multimineral tablet will strengthen the hair. Mineral rich herbs include nettles, oat straw and horsetail. Use any or all of these as tea in as much quantity as you like- they are all like food. And protein is critical for strong, beautiful hair. Make sure you are getting enough.

Oiling the hair daily is a basic yoga lifestyle practice. Air tattva (vayu) is the nervous system, and, of course, resides in the brain, so vayu tends to collect in the head. Air is the main element that causes disturbed sleep. Controlling vayu will reduce that overactive mind that plagues us when we most want to slumber. At bedtime, apply a little oil to your scalp. Ayurveda suggests a drop of castor oil for this, but it's a little messy. Almond works well. The anterior fontanel is the best spot.

Oil is the main general remedy for controlling the air tattva. To keep your mind on track through the day, use cooling oils for daily scalp care, including coconut and ghee. Sesame and almond are also good general choices for keeping the scalp soft and moist.

Hair oils are usually made form cooling herbs. Use prepared Ayurvedic hair oil made from amla fruit, brahmi leaf or bringraj. Buttermilk head massage is a traditional treatment used to treat dry hair, dandruff and hair loss. We all want our days to be filled with energy and happiness.

Adding a little awareness to the daily routines, including hair care, can pay big dividends over a lifetime, and help bring us to a place of health and holiness.


Thus Jun 15, 2006 8:29 am
Message Yahoo Group
No. 225 of 4571

We call the time we spend on our maintenance, Sadhana.
It is an essential part of life. If you do your Sadhana,
your mind can take the pressure. It will guide you and groom you properly.
~ Yogi Bhajan


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