Guruatma K Khalsa

healing from the inside out

The Yoga of Hearing Loss & Chair Yoga Class – guruatma’s notes & 5 hand-outs – Houston Hearing Loss Assn Presentation 9-14-13


page 1

9-14-13 Hearing Loss Association presentation

The Yoga of Hearing Loss

 let’s tune inguided breath series/an exercise in awareness:

/eyes 9/10ths or fully closed, or you can read the captions

/back of hands on thighs, thumb and index finger touching

/’root’ to Mother Earth through your feet (toes, balls, heels)/backs of your legs where they touch the chair/sit bones

/feel the sensations of gravity holding you in the chair

/push off your sit bones and make your spine tall

/pull your head back a little like you’re holding an orange under your chin

/now, just observe your breath

/are you breathing?

/is there movement in your belly?

/is your chest lifting & dropping?

/can you feel your heart breathing?

/where is that breath coming from?

/Long Deep Breathing:

-hands on belly below navel/base of rib cage/upper chest (3 stages of inhale – see hand-out)

-and back down for exhale (3 stages)

/open out the belly and pull the breathe into the deep into the capillaries of the lungs on the inhale

/pull belly in to contract the diaphragm & deflate the lungs on the exhale


page 2

-it’s an honor to be here with you today/ long-time & true connection

-has anyone ever done yoga?

1)for 9 months in womb

2)by my experience of it, i believe we, with hearing loss, are great yogis

-some people think:

/you need a mat and trendy clothes to do yoga

/some people think yoga is about twisting your body like a pretzel

 -well, how ’bout us who have to s-t-r-e-t-c-h:

/to accept the condition of hearing loss in the first place and figure out how to function and survive through each day

/to learn all this new technology and figure out our hearing equipment

/to learn how to communicate our needs to the people we interact with – huge part of hearing loss!  Teri and my Dad (“Maybe you can help me with something.”) gave me suggestions.

 /and bust our butts, twist and bend all over the place to get everything set up for each new hearing event we encounter in our day, day after day, including and especially the holidays & special events with all that extra jazz – the OMG-do-I-have-enough-batteries???yikes!!help! kind of awareness that comes with managing all our adaptive equipment – lol

-WE are great yogis! because we constantly make the choice to “Stop relating to anything that limits you.”

the primary tool in yoga is our breathall we need we already have!


page 3

-the truth is, nobody can really tell you what yoga is – because you have to experience what yoga is

 -yoga exercises are like a mirror – they show us where we need to stretch, where we need to open and where we need support

-the word ‘yoga’ comes from the biblical word ‘yoke’ /like how 2 animals are coupled together, bound by a singular collar and purpose, to pull a cart

-look at your hand-out – a bunch of words that I will make real for you

-yoga is the union of an individual finite consciousness (I AM) with an infinite consciousness (I AM THOU)

 – the ‘little me’ (finite) unites with ‘bigger me’ (infinite)

-ie:  the individual consciousness of guruatma, the ‘little me’ – “OMG, I’m deaf!” presenting with the unawareness, fear, vulnerability, shock, isolation

UNITES WITH a living, breathing, tangible representative of the infinite consciousness, that being HLA – YOU!


page 4

-now look how creative this gets! – my husband has to get on board because he’s married to me/in comes all my family to research & discover captioned TV & phone/Teri T-switch gets delivered to our front door & introduces us to SHHH/I get to laugh because Mary captioned a play at the 1st meeting we went to/Les, who’s ‘been there done that’, so I listen up!, educates me about eqpt/we get the lesson from Maurice’s father who insisted she go to regular schools/Rynda and Max do their magic/my husband gets to hang out with other spouses who understand his world – yeah for taking care of my husband!/Nancy goes to captioned movies with me/it goes on and on into the present/here I am giving this presentation today

-so you see how you are my infinity, my platform of elevation – how beautiful is that!

we’re here in conscious, will-full union to support and serve each other’s highest good by the grace of the ‘condition’ that challenges us all, brings us together and yokes us to eachother

this is our living yoga!

 -for me, yoga is about:

/being a student in and of this universe.  just like being in school – pay attention, do your homework, research and pass the test, to be in the knowing

 /that awareness starts with me and that’s called SELF AWARENESS

/about taking care of yourself – your body, mind and spirit

 /and I found there’s a huge opportunity for developing and practicing self-care/self-acceptance/self-nurturing/self-love in the hearing loss arena which is exactly why I am here.  I really needed to take that course! because I was very insecure and taking care of everybody but guruatma


page 5

take a pause…….


-because all life is based on sound, hearing loss is a tremendous and serious challenge because it threatens our very survival

-it’s not just about losing the physical sense of hearing our environment

-when our exquisitely constructed and profound system for reading and grasping, understanding  the world around us is compromised in any way and to any degree, we are:

/forced to deal with letting go of our attachments on many levels (ie: nature/music/family/social/personal health/entertainment)

/faced with emotions like frustration/feeling limited/anger/grief that come up with the changes and lessons


page 6

 -with all challenges comes stress and yoga can give us tools

/build protection from outside influences

/for conquering our fears as we navigate through the changes and lessons

/for learning to accept what is

/coping skills to develop patience and

/maintain a spirit of “keep up”

/relaxation skills that recuperate and strengthening our nervous system

/to help us tune into the subtle messages that are everywhere

-maybe you have a different experience but to me, hearing loss is exhausting – all day long we are confronted with our natural and necessary huge desire to hear, to be connected and to understand.  even when we’re alone and especially when our equipment is turned off, we’re ‘on call’/alert and working hard to understand our environment

-there really is no break – give yourself big-time credit for that!

-and know that the energetic output needed for moving through our typical day absolutely requires extra maintenance, care and consideration


page 7

-for me, being deaf is my yoga – NOTHING is as hands-on, constant and relentless in my life as getting through each day being able to hear

/not even my marriage which they say is the highest yoga is that demanding – lol

hearing loss is taxing on the nervous system:

/in a state of constant urgency


/so much effort –  sense of being ‘at attention’, like a soldier

/shame & guilt

/disconnection/separation/loneliness (what Helen Keller said – blindness separates you from things and deafness separates you from people) – that was the biggest thing for me when I was jerked out of the natural, continual flow of communication

-example:  not being able to hear sat kartar’s jokes and how that affected both of us as individuals and as a family

/not feeling comfortable in our environment/un-easy-ness (like when hearing aids are off at nite)

/grief for loss of music and entertainment – biggie for me!

/loss of the sense of control

/defining boundaries is a whole new frontier – tell Comtek PA System story, how I held my transmitter for other people for 10 yrs until I figured out they ‘had a part’ and then, how to invite them to hold it

/dealing with the resistance/reservation coming from some people we have to communicate with


page 8

-I have adapted a discipline of counseling and encouraging myself to

 /trust that I’m hearing what I need to hear

/communicate spirit to spirit and heart to heart

/tune into what we call in the yogic world, the ‘Unstruck Melody’

/zero-in and practice picking up information in round-about and subtle ways

/for example:

 -eyes – how hard (almost impossible for me) it is to talk to someone with sunglasses on


-foreheads – yeah for wrinkles on our foreheads!

-body language

-‘caption-call’ telephone operators typing to tell us that the person we’re talking to is crying – “caller crying”

-etc, etc


page 9

-the greatest tool in yoga is our breath – all we need we already have

-breath control is vital because the breath can:

/cool us down/bring us to neutral state/relax us

/give us a ‘charge’ of energy/bring us to attention

/keep us alert & focused on the only thing we can really control, which is the moment – the past is gone and no one knows the future

-we practiced Long Deep Breathing – extending your breath on either side will

 /take out the garbage on the exhale (talk about not taking out the garbage and what that would be like in your home)

/we are recycling carbon dioxide & toxins if shallow breathing

/bring in new life-force/potential/fresh options on the inhale


page 10

(if time permits)

other yogic tools that I learned to incorporate in the face of my hearing loss:

/stop resisting the emotions – allow the impact/sit with it and absorb it – feel it.  Feelings have impt information and need to be expressed (if i stuff them, i end up eating over it)

 /rest periods are a yoga exercise, too! – take a break from hearing during the day

/conscious communication

/practice gratitude – it takes as much energy to complain as to find something to be grateful for in the moment

 /forgiveness work


 /the days I do my yoga and meditation, I am far more flexible, relaxed and self-confident

 /and therefore better at coping with the challenges and promoting myself successfully through that day


page 11

 chair yoga:


1)   alternate nostril breathing – balances the brain


2)   spinal flex

/this is what to do when you only have time for one exercise

/massages all 26 vertebrae

/chest/heart center opens on inhale

/cave in the belly/pull the navel center towards back of chair on exhale

/head rides on shoulders – like rider on a camel


3)   rest – the rest period is an exercise, too – pay attention to your body sensations and the breath


4)   spinal twist

/hands on shoulders/fingers in front/thumbs behind

/spine is tall and straight

/chin slightly tucked like you have an orange under it

/inhale left (mantra- pro: ‘sut’)/exhale right (pro:’naam’)

/’Sat’ means Truth/’Naam’ means Identity

/My identity is true.


5)   rest/allow the sensations


6)   shoulder shrugs

/inhale up/exhale down


7)   rest


8)   neck rotation

/arms stretched out to the sides, palms up

/inhale turn head to left/exhale right

/pull root lock


9)   rest


page 12

closing:  (in easy pose)


You live by your breath, you die by the breath, you are born by the breath.  (Yogi Bhajan quote.


Relate to your own breath of life. Hear your breath. Feel it in your body.


Whenever you have a desire that needs to be fulfilled, breathe consciously like this and ask the breath of your life to communicate with the source of that breath to give you everything you need.

What can give you life, can give you everything!

-Inhale deeply and hold the breath and offer your desire to the infinite. Let it go.

-Inhale again and hold the breath and see yourself healthy, happy and whole. Let it go.

-Inhale and embrace all of us present today.  See us all going back out into the world with the light and unity we share. Let it go.

-Inhale and embrace of your family and friends, community and city. Let it go.

-Inhale deep and project your light, your love and peace on Mother Earth and to all the creation. Let it go.


page 13

 business at the end:

1) invite them to my class (5 yrs teaching this class):

Free Chair Yoga Class for the Handicapped and for Seniors

City of Houston


1st and 3rd Friday of every month


1475 West Grey  77019


2) for more information on Kundalini Yoga, go to or


3)  Guruatma serves as a mentor for those who suffer from chronic or critical illness, as well as their family members. To inquire about or schedule a one-on-one session, click here:

“Like” us on Facebook:


4)  4 hand-outs (pages 14-17), plus cookie recipe (page 18)


5)  serve Yogi Tea & Gluten-Free Macrobiotic Cookies – yum!


6)  This presentation is Copyright Guruatma Khalsa @



page 14  HAND-OUT#1

Hearing Loss Association Presentation

September 14, 2013


The Yoga of Hearing Loss with guruatma





Yoga acts as a mirror. Each breath, each movement reflects to us who we are and how we are, moment to moment. We look into the mirror of yoga and see the places that need support and the places that need to open. The postures teach us about ourselves. They bless us with immediate  feedback.      Julie Rappaport



for more information on Kundalini Yoga –

page 15  HAND-OUT #2

Some people think yoga is a religion.  Some people think yoga is for vitality and strength.  The word yoga, as we in the West understand it has come down from the biblical word, yoke.  Yoga is the union of the individual’s unit consciousness with the Infinite consciousness.

 Classically, your potential self is infinite, whether you know it or you don’t know it. The fact remains that every human mind belongs to infinity and to creativity. But in practical action, it is limited. So a technical know-how is required through which a man can expand his mental faculties in order to bring about the equilibrium to control his physical structure and experience his infinite self.

That’s all yoga means in very simple terms.


If you can control your breathing,

you can directly control your mind.


You are alive by the breath, you are a product of the breath.  The moment you are in touch with your breath, the universe pours into you.



Happiness is proportional to your rate of breathing.  As much oxygen you have, that is how much strength you have.  You need 21% oxygen in your super-beautiful wonderful blood.  Man can manufacture anything but blood – that only your self can create.


The above 4 quotes are Copyright The Teachings of Yogi Bhajan


page 16  HAND-OUT #3




-In this “U Breathing” exercise, the breath is always relaxed, deep & full.

-Relax the back of the left hand in the lap, thumb & first finger touching.

-Use the thumb of the right hand to close the right nostril, & the index 
finger or ring finger of the right hand to close the left nostril. (teach modifications/depends on use of fingers)

-Close the right nostril.  Now gently & fully inhale through the left nostril.

-Then close the left nostril. Now exhale through the right nostril.

-Then inhale through the right nostril.

-Close the right nostril & exhale through the left nostril.

-Continue repeating, alternating nostrils after each inhalation.

Benefits of Alternate Nostril Breathing

Creates whole brain functioning by balancing the right & left hemispheres.

Creates a deep sense of well-being & harmony on the physical, mental, 
& emotional levels. Is both integrating & grounding.

Can help with headaches & other stress-related symptoms.

Inhale left, exhale right: Helps to make you calm & integrates 
unwanted negative emotions and stress. Excellent by itself before bed.

Inhale right, exhale left: Gives clarity & positive mood. Helps us to focus 
on what is important.

Left nostril breathingthe Moon energy – cooling, receptive, calmness, empathy, sensitivity, unifying – cleansing phase of breath cycle

Right nostril breathing:  Sun energy – warming & projective, vigor, concentration, alertness, will power – nurturing phase of breath cycle


 guruatma at                



page 17  HAND-OUT #4 – Mechanics of Long, Deep Breathing (not able to show the graph on this forum)


page 18  HAND-OUT #5 – cookie recipe

sugar/gluten-free, macrobiotic cookies

pile up in food processor & do not pre-mix the dry ingds:

1 c almonds     1-1/3 c gluten-free oats

1/4 c raw sesame seeds     1/2 tsp cardamom

pinch of salt   1/4 c ground flax seed   1 c gluten-free flour***

 turn processor on & pour in:

1/2 c organic canola oil &1/2 c slurple (maple syrup)

minimal processing     allow the almonds to remain chunky

 fork onto cookie sheets -i use parchment paper underneath

 flatten them down with fork prongs or fist fingers

use your thumb, make a little pool in the center of each cookie

fill pools with sugar-free jelly

red raspberry/strawberry are my fav color

350 degrees     check at 10-12 min point

rotate pans keep baking till toasty    WATCH ‘EM like a hawk!

cool on racks     makes @ 25 cookies

***proportions for guruatma’s gluten-free flour mixture:

2 c almond meal    2 c tapioca flour    1 c brown rice four

guruatma at

Guruatma serves as a mentor for those who suffer from chronic or critical illness, as well as their family members. To inquire about or schedule a one-on-one session, click here:

“Like” us on Facebook:


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