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Breathwork is a generic term (breath+work) that refers to working with your breathing consciously as opposed to allowing it to do what it does automatically, unconsciously.
There are many different types of Breathwork each with its own intent. Effiji Breathwork is focused on the mind's resistance to change and releasing stuck energy. Since your breathing gives you life, the power of the universe (also known as chi or qi) is found in your breath. To unlock and access that power is to unlock and access your own power.
Effiji Breathwork is conscious hyperventilation. This means that you breathe rapidly through the mouth, focused on the inhale, on purpose.
Hyperventilation refers to an automatic, unconscious response in the body to a feeling of panic. With conscious hyperventilation, you are choosing to breathe fully to move energy and gain access to the qi inside the breath.
For a more full explanation, we recommend reading Elijah’s book, A Liberated Life; Effiji Breathwork and the Process of Freeing Your Mind where there is a more complete explanation of Effiji Breathwork. There is also an audio book available on most platforms (Audible and Spotify).
An Effiji Breath session, both in group and private, lasts about 2 hours. There is an introduction and time to answer questions before the breathing practice begins. The practice itself is one hour followed by a short rest period and a closing of the class. The exact time depends on the length of the facilitator’s introduction, the number of questions, and the extent of sharing.
~ We consider Effiji Breathwork different from a normal class like Pilates or Yoga. Signing up is the beginning of the class. You are preparing to bring unconscious material up to the surface for healing. The rigor of the class begins right when you sign up and that material begins to emerge. You may feel emotional, scared or excited. It is all part of the process.
~ Do not take alcohol or recreational drugs before attending a session. Also, do not eat a heavy meal before attending.
~ Before attending a workshop consider leaving some time after the session before getting back into practical activities. Being out in nature, getting bodywork, taking a bath, or having a nice meal are good choices. It’s not suggested to be anywhere that is chaotic, loud or where you have to be “on” for other people. Allowing time after will continue the deep healing that takes place over the next two or three days.
Pranayam and other Yogic breath techniques are different types of Breathwork. It is best not to assume that if you have tried other Breathwork techniques that Effiji Breathwork will be familiar. Since the word Breathwork is a generic term (breath+work), you likely have not experienced Effiji Breath. While there are some methods that do a form of conscious hyperventilation, Effiji has its own philosophy and technique.
We suggest reading Elijah’s book A Liberated Life; Effiji Breathwork and the Process of Freeing Your Mind. Chapter 5 is solely dedicated to explaining everything you would want to know about the philosophy and practice of Effiji Breath. There is also an audio book available on most platforms like (Audible and Spotify).
~ Everyone’s experience is completely unique and each time you do it will be different. As you open up to the breath you will experience a wide array of body sensations, emotions and thoughts.
~ Your body temperature may also fluctuate. If you tend to be cold, consider having an extra blanket available before the session begins.
~ It is important to understand that Effiji Breathwork does not bring forward new experiences. Everything that happens within the session is material that was already there inside the unconscious. Therefore, the most powerful thing you can do is to accept and allow whatever arises. The more you allow and accept the more transformative your session will be.
~ If you are attending in-person, dress comfortably and bring a water bottle. Most venues have mats, pillows and blankets which are also helpful but we suggest you ask in advance if you aren’t sure.
For online sessions:
~ Have a yoga mat or something comfortable to lie on (couch, bed, etc. are acceptable). You may want a low pillow if your neck tends to curve backward.
~ Make sure you have reliable wifi, and your device is fully charged.
~ Make sure you can position your camera to show your upper body from a side view.
~ Try to have the light behind the camera, instead of in front of it, so that we can see you clearly.
~ The music played during a session is an important element to the class so using an external speaker is recommended. (Bose, Sonos, etc.)
~ We don’t suggest headphones although you can use them. Our experience has shown us that is nice to hear the air around you in the space and not to have the whole session “in your head”.
You may use your phone if that is all that you have, but we recommend a computer or tablet instead. The sound through a phone is not as good and there is more potential for interruptions like phone calls and texts. It is also much harder to set it up so the facilitator can see you. We have also noticed there is an instinct after the breath to grab your phone, so we prefer a laptop or tablet.
We do not suggest that Effiji Breathwork be practiced without a facilitator. Due to the nature of the processing taking place, it can be unsafe. In Elijah’s book A Liberated Life; Effiji Breathwork and the Process of Freeing Your Mind, there is a full explanation for all the reasons we do not suggest you do this practice on your own. There is also an audio book available on most platforms (Audible and Spotify).
There is no limit to the frequency and amount of breathwork sessions a person can do. It depends on how much transformation you are looking for and how willing you are to go through the sea-change that it will bring in your life. Consult with your facilitator. The most important aspect of the practice is inside the collaborative relationship between you and your facilitator.
~ That depends on your definition of meditation. If you compare Effiji Breath to traditional Vipassana (where a person sits and watches their breath allowing and accepting everything that arises, without attachment) then the answer would be yes. Effiji is an active meditation, meaning you are physically doing something, but you are ultimately there to witness what arises in the process, just like Vipassana.
~ It is our experience that people who find it difficult to sit still and watch their breath, without the mind taking over, find that Effiji will help them to be able to do a sitting meditation more easily.
Our experience has shown us that there are no negative or lasting side effects from practicing Conscious Hyperventilation. If you understand that the breathwork session may bring up buried material from the unconscious, then you can see any side effects like tiredness or sore muscles as a positive by product of your effort.
We do not endorse drinking, smoking marijuana or other psychotropic drugs and plant medicines before the breath. Our waiver strictly prohibits this.
There are many types of medication, so if you have a concern speak with the facilitator before taking on the practice.
We have no evidence of adverse side effects for people taking antidepressants, however, if you have any concerns regarding medication speak with your facilitator about the specifics. And, of course, also speak with your doctor.
As long as you do not have any problems or unusual conditions during pregnancy we have worked successfully with people who have been as far as 8 months into their pregnancy. If you are uncertain, speak with your facilitator and your doctor. The practice can also be modified for pregnancy like lying on your side.
We have a 3-day rule. The breathing session has brought a lot of unconscious material forward. Not all of it has completely cleared or re-patterned in you. It takes about 3 days for the whole process to be complete. Sometimes it’s in the mind, sometimes in the emotional body and sometimes in the actual physical body. Know that it is a normal part of the process and tends to be less after doing several sessions.
The biggest change is clarity. When we feel who we really are, separate from our experiences, patterning and conditioning, we are able to correctly handle any situation or circumstance that arises in our life.
Another benefit is a feeling of flow and energy in the body. It’s not subtle. Anyone and everyone can have this. It is simply your energy being more alive and available to you to experience.
These are just a few of the many benefits that have been reported over the last 30 years of sharing this practice. Every person is different and every time you do the breath, you’ll get something new from it. We suggest you come and try it and see how the practice can serve you specifically.
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