I knew Ananda Mandala could be a powerful, life changing experience, but I did not expect to loose control of my body in the way that I did. ‘Ananda Mandala’ means “bliss circle” in Sanskrit, and is an intense breathing meditation that was developed at a university in India. Originally it was a method practiced by yogis to release deep seated emotions and reach a higher level of consciousness. It’s usually done in groups, but I choose to do it sitting across from my partner in the comfort of our room. This turned out to be a good decision when I ended up lying down, crying heavily and with snot dripping out of my nose… not my finest moment.
We chose to do a guided meditation on YouTube through a speaker, and I knew before I began that I would have to really commit to it. It’s physically demanding on the body, in the way that you have to breathe in and out very fast and there are not that many breaks. I had already decided to commit fully this time. I had tried a similar breathing practice before that I found difficult to commit to and so didn’t really experience fully, whereas this time I decided to open myself fully to the Ananda journey.