Laugh! Burst out laughing! Laugh from the core of your heart, with the warmth of your heart. Laugh like Ho Tei. Ho Tei was a Japanese saint, a preacher of Buddhism. His method of teaching was “laughter”, only laughter. He wandered around from place to places, from village to villages. In a place in the middle of a village or a market, he used to stand and start laughing. This laughter was his preaching; it was his teaching. His laughter was as lively as communicable. It evolved from the core of his heart. His body convulsed with laughter and he danced and hopped and skipped with laughter. He fell on the ground and laughed. He rolled on the ground and laughed. The people gathered around also started laughing. The laughter spread out over a large area and was transmitted from man to man. All the villagers joined this occasion of laughter and burst out into laughing. The villagers always waited for Ho Tei’s arrival. This man brought them joy, bliss and delight. People forgot their troubles and sufferings joining the laughter session of Ho Tei. They got rid of diseases. Therefore they waited for Ho Tei.
You yourself may laugh knowing “laughter cures diseases”. But it is true. Let’s take the example of Norman Cassins, the editor of Saturday Review, U.S.A. In the decade of 1970, he was attacked by an incurable disease of spine. The doctors refused the chance of his cure. After few years of severe and excessive suffering, he decided that he won’t take medicine anymore. Instead, he invented a unique method. Whenever his pain grew worse, he played the video clips of his favorite comedy films- Laurel & Hardy, Max Brothers etc. He, in a short span of time, could feel the pain reducing power of laughter. He saw that intense laughter for 5 minutes at a stretch relieves him from pain for at least 2 hours. In this way, he was fully cured without the so called medication but laughter only. His book Anatomy of an Illness, an account of how he recovered from the disease, became the best seller. Norman Cassins died in 1990, at the age of 75.
The doctors researched a lot on the healing power of laughter and are still working on it. We are getting more and more information about it with the advancement of these scientific research works. Dr. Raymond Moody, in his book Laugh after Laugh: The Healing Power of Humour commented that laughter has a close relationship with the physical condition of one. He experienced a lot of patients who had recovered making laughter as the only medicine. Dr. Moody added that laughter has an intimate relationship with lifespan. It has a tremendous power of reducing pain. It is almost hostile to pain. He said that laughter can easily remove muscular pain since body-muscles relax while laughing. The unconsciously created tension in muscles is the cause of all problems. While laughing, muscle relaxes; thus reducing the tension of the affected area. Dr. Moody mentioned of one of his fellow doctors who cured his patients using laughter as the only medicine.
To explain laughter, Dr. William Fry, the researcher of Stanford University, said that it is different from other emotions. It works as an exercise. While laughing muscle becomes active, the heart rate increases and the bloods capacity of taking in oxygen increases as well. Similar effect has been observed due to laughing, as in the exercise of the sportsmen. Laughter gives you a `mini workout’ of the muscles in the areas of hands, face, legs and the abdomen. (Think of the muscular pain you had when you burst out into laughter the previous time.) Laughter causes the exercise of diaphragm, thorax, circulatory and endocrine system as well. Laughter increases the hormonal secretion of catecholamine of the brain. This catecholamine secretes endorphin into the blood, which is the self-made pain killer of the human brain itself.
Dr. William Fry believes that when one bursts out laughing, he gets the same benefit as from the deep meditation of a few minutes and laughing 20 times a day neutralizes the necessity of jogging. Not only that, it has been discovered in the psycho-neuro-immunological research that negative emotions, for instance, depression, weakens the immune system of the body. The result is- you can very easily be attacked by diseases, from catching cold to cancer. On the other hand, laughter strengthens immune system and helps it to prevent and cure any disease.
There are different types of laughter. Every type doesn’t heal. The way how you are laughing has its importance in your life, why you are laughing is also very significant. Dr. Olson has divided laughter into 3 different categories.
- Firstly: a smile of mockery. Mocking smile doesn’t have any healing power because it creates a feeling of false vanity and egocentricity in one.
- Secondly: laughing at something laughable or amusing. It has some healing power.
- Thirdly: innocent but a loud and hearty laughter.
According to Raymond Moody, this third type is heavenly. Its healing power is the most. One who can burst out laughing innocently, he can look at the world neutrally, unbiased. He can get humor from life without being disrespectful to himself and others.
Being aware of the significance of laughter, the last Prophet Muhammad(sm) emphasized on the worth of laughter. He said that even speaking to others can be charity, if you have a warm smile on your face. Not only that it is beneficial, but also it is transmittable. A warm smile has an effect on others. One might smile watching you smile. Dr. David Brestler, the rheumatologist from Los Angeles, has given importance on being in company with happy, smiling and pro-active people. He has seen in his long research that pro-active and smiling people have emotional impact on others since their positive attitude towards life make others optimistic. (In fact, it is worth noticing, with which type of people you spend most of your time.) So keep smiling and stay pro-active. Laugh every day. Laugh at least 15 to 20 times a day. Spend most of your time with cheerful, optimist people. Your own life will be full of mirth and joyfulness.
The Meditation of Laughter:
When you wake up early in the morning, wriggle your body in closed eye. Relax all the muscles. Breathe long for sometimes. After a lapse of 3 or 4 minutes, try to laugh. Start with a giggling at first. The sound effect produced by this one would lead you to the world of intense laughter. You will surely be lost in the world of laughter within a few minutes. The experiment may not work out 100% on the first day. May be you would just chuckle and giggle and nothing more, in case you have forgotten what real laughter is. But the continuous effort of a few days would help you to give a genuine heavenly laughter. Immerse yourself into laughter for at least 5 minutes. This divine laughter would fill your day with joviality and cheerfulness.
There are several laughing clubs in several countries for its psycho-physical value. The laughing club of Dr. Modon Kataria of Bombay has created a wave of enthusiasm in the whole world. You can also organize a laughing club with some of your friends and relatives. If you go for a morning or evening walk in the fresh air, you can practice laughter while walking, making a proper utilization of time. You will feel enlivened and rejuvenated. The practice of joint laughter is quite easy. From 5/6 people to 100/150 people can laugh at a time in a group. Stand in a circle at first. Try to laugh, though artificially, looking at each other. You will feel the tickling soon. When one bursts out into laughter, others will join him automatically since laughter is transmissible. The loud vigorous laughter of 5/6 minutes will keep you enlivened the whole day.
Article source: Quantum Method
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