Granthis the Knots that Bind us
The Sanskrit word Granthi means knot or doubt. It can also be translated as a particularly difficult knot to unravel.
Granthi are psychological or physic barriers to liberation (Moksha) Granthis prevent prana from its path along sushumna nadi. Granthis bind us to mortal fears, and give us a false impression of reality (avidya) and hold is in a state of I-ness (asmita) and hold us to raga (attachment) and dvesha (repulsion)
Knowledge (jnana) helps us make more considered choices, and with the space this creates, we are able to apply vidya (knowledge that cannot be contradicted) This gives way to Atman, the universal truth in all of us which is beyond maya (veil of illusion) or beyond Asmita (I ness or ego)
The ability to see concepts such as attachment and racism from a perception of vidya (knowledge that cannot be contradicted) offer us liberation. We begin to see that accepting responsibility for our actions frees us from our self-imposed bondage or prison.
The Hatha Yoga Pradipika tells us we can untie the knots by practising our bandhas. Applying Maha badha will hold in prana like a pressure cooker, which is said to pierce through our blockages, both emotional and physical.
located at the base of the spine between Muladhara Chakra and Svadhisthana Chakra. Its where our basic fears and drives are located. Fear of death, fear of lack of money or food. The fight and flight reaction. Functioning healthily, we would feel grounded and secure, aware of our primitive desires, but able to see them as primal instinct, and know they don’t serve us anymore. A strong yet balanced core will allow us face the world with confidence and humility, not aggressively and arrogantly.
Is the knot between Manipura Chakra and Anahata Chakra. This Granthi will hold us to our individual ego. We will feel the need to overpower and dominate, otherwise we may be dominated by the competition. The way to overcome this is through complete surrender. This does not mean be allow ourselves to be a push over, we feel the confidence to lead by example.
is knotted between the Anahata and Ajña chakra. A symptom of this knot can be a misinterpretation of service. Serving others or communities is only a good thing when it is done freely and without expectation. It can also become a problem if the service is done as a penance, then who is the service performed for, the giver or the receiver.
I am often asked by my students, especially my teacher trainees, why I push them hard to practise their kriyas every morning. The physical benefits of practising nauli and udiyana bandha are a strong and well balanced core. These practices are also vacuum exercises, and will hit areas of the core no other exercise will. Going deeper, the morning kriya practise will work the subtle body, cleansing and purifying, freeing us from our self-imposed limitations.