Translation by Satya Murthy.
Follows on from the earlier post on Pranayama Special benefits
I am embarassed to say that I don’t have the opportunity to discuss this in detail, but I have discussed this in detail in the 1st section of “Yogamakarnada”. Therefore, I trust that you will be able to read from there. Those who have the necessity can learn from respective teachers. Also, one should learn in the same way the rest of yoganga parts: pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and samadhi.
You know that some people believe and practice these as parts of yoganga. However, these are not in Patanjaladarshana which is the basis of all yoga. They are also not described in other texts and Upanishads. These are described only Hathayogapradipika and Gherunda samhita. However, in Hathayogapradipika, although Swatmarama has said
मेधःश्लेष्ह्माधिकःपर्वं षट्कर्माणि समाचरेत्।
अन्यस्तु नाचरेत् तानि दोषाणां समभावतः॥
Medhah shleshmadhikah parvam shatkarmani samacharet।
Anyastu nacharet tani goshanam samabhavatah ॥
Many people continue to practice it without learning the mystery, endangering themselves and bringing bad reputation to yoga which is very unfortunate.
There are six different types: 1. Dhouti 2. Basti 3. Neti 4. Nauli 5. Trataka and 6. Kapala bhati
The first dhouti kriya is further classified into four types: Antardhouti, Dantadhouti, Hruddhouti and Moola shodhana.
Antardhouti: This is again divided into four types; Vatasara, Varisara, Vahnisara, and Bahishkruta
Vatasara dhouti: Open your mouth like a crow’s beak and slowly inhale the air then close the mouth and swallow, from this wash your stomatch by moving it all around and then release it from the anus or by exhalation.
By doing this once, it is not possible to release the inhaled air through the anal opening. By practicing daily for not less than 25 times for several days, then on the 5th try, the air can be released through the anal opening.
Those who can not accomplish this can do it slowly through rechaka. This will give medium benefit. This Vatasara dhouti belongs to Rajayoga.
Benefits: Eliminates diseases of the heart, purifies blood and increases digestive power.
Varisara dhouti: Continue drinking clean water (cold or warm) until it comes up to your throat. Swirl the water in the stomach sideways, up and down, pull the stomach in and push it out and release through the anal opening. This belongs to laya yoga. This can be mastered by practicing several times a day.
Benefits: By removing impurities from skeletal joints and knots within the nervous system, causes the body to shine and increases jatara agni (Raja Yoga).
Vahnisara dhouti: The stomach along with the navel must be pulled in so as to touch the spine and then pushed forward again. Repeat this several times. While pulling the stomach in, practice rechaka kumbhaka and while pushing the stomach forward, practice puraka kumbhaka. Practice this before eating. If you want to practice this after eating, wait for atleast three hours. Otherwise, it is dangerous. This vahnisara dhouti must be practiced daily by repeating for 24 times (Raja yoga).
Benefits: This elimiates all types of stomach ailments
Bahishkruti dhouti: Form your mouth like a crow’s beak and inhale air to your capacity and hold (kumbhaka) as long as possible. Then exhale throught the nostirils (rechaka). This rechaka and kumbhaka is only for those who are practicing for the first time. This way, after inhaling, rechka kumbhaka must be practiced 25 times per day. This must be practiced in the morning or evening before taking food. If one keeps practicing this properly, it not only develops the ability to hold breath for long periods (kumbhaka), but also enables to perform rechaka through the anal opening. Once you are able to do this, you should not do rechaka through the nose. With this practice, one will be able to perform kumbhaka for up to 1.5 hours. After acquiring this power, stand in water up to navel level and very carefully and cautiously push out through the anal opening, “Shakti Nadi” (in the form of a big bag that spreads from lower abdomen all the way to Muladhara chakra). Wash it with water until it is clean and push it back through the same anal opening.
Warning: This kriya is only for hatha yogis and not for raja yogis, laya yogis and mantra yogis.
Benefits: Eliminates impurities throughout the body, provides shining to the body and prevents diseases from getting foothold in the body.
Danta Dhouti: This is divided into four types: Dantamoola dhouti, jihwamoola dhouti, karna dhouti and kapalarandra dhouti.
Dantamoola dhouti: Scrub the teeth daily in the early morning either with “kaggali” plant extract or with clean mud. Rinse out with clean water and rub the tongue with cow’s butter. After this hold the tip of the tongue with an iron tong lightly and pull it little by little. This is only for Hatha yogis.
Benefits: If this is practiced daily morning and evening without fail, helps in achieving kechari mudra, removes all defects in the tongue and improves clarity of speech.
Karna dhouti: Clean the ears using the index and ring fingers together, insert inside the ears and turn around.
Benefits: Eliminates deafness, prevents diseases of the ear and gives power to hear the inner nadam (sound).
Kapalarandra dhouti: Using the right thumb rub the uvula present in the back of the throat daily.
Benefits: This kriya must be practiced daily in the morning after getting up, after lunch in the afternoon and evening. This removes kapha dosha, cleans the nadis and gives good eye sight.
It's interesting here that Krishnamacharya gives a warning about kriyas and yet still goes ahead and describes them rather than the mudras, both kriyas and mudras were covered in his earlier book Yoga Makaranda.
A. G. Mohan writes at some length about discussing Kriyas with Krishnamacharya in his book Krishnamacharya: His Life and Teachings,
"Krishnamacharya , however, did not recommend the kriyas to his students. He considered them mostly unnecessary and sometimes risky. He would point out that the kriyas are not found in the more ancient texts;they are relatively recent practices. He would add, "The kriyas are not necessary if you know now how to do proper asana and pranayama". The Hath Yoga Prapdika supports this view:
Some teachers say that all impurities are removed by pranayama alone and other acts (the above mentioned kriyas) are not accepted by them.
Hatha yoga prapdika 2.37"
Krishnamacharya: His Life and Teachings, A. G. Mohan p 63-64
Srivatsa Ramaswami, who studied with Krishnamacharya for 33 years writes
"The six (sat-kriya) practices are dhouti (stomach wash), Basti ( or vasti, colon wash) Neti (nasal wash), Trataka (or tratakum, gazing), Nauli (stomach churn) and Kapala bhati (skull polishing).
Of the first there which use water , cloth or other external agencies, were not recommended or encouraged in the system in which i was trained ( i.e. Krishnamacharya). trataka, which is a good exercise for the eyes, nauli, which is for the lower abdomen and kapalabhati, which is primarily for the respiratory system, are however, frequently used by abhyasis, none of these practices introduce external aids into the system, and none is as displeasing as the first three".
Yoga for the three stages of life Srivatsa Ramaswami p89