Dr. Robert Svoboda is the first Westerner ever to graduate from a college of Ayurveda and be licensed to practice Ayurveda in India. During and after his formal Ayurvedic training he was tutored in Ayurveda, Yoga, Jyotish, Tantra and other forms of classical Indian lore by his mentor, the Aghori Vimalananda. The author of more than a dozen books, he lived in India for more than a decade, after which he has continued to spend much of each year there and in other lands.
Talk: Ayurveda of the Breath: Pranava, Prana, Pranayama, Pratyahara
However much we humans try to complicate our lives, life itself is quite uncomplicated: life equals prana. Where prana, the life force, exists, so does life exist; where prana is absent, so is life absent. The free, well-channeled flow of prana brings well-being; obstructions to that flow, particularly those caused by obstacles that we set in its way, prevent prana from fulfilling its task. When we learn to get out of prana’s way and let the life force do the work that it knows best, we follow the path to happiness and health. The better we understand prana, how to cultivate it (pranayama), and how to internalize it (pratyahara), the better we will be able to reach beyond it to pranava, the Supreme.