A practice followed by Pythagoras and other high initiates
In the spring following his first public talk, Mikhaël encouraged his students to attend the sunrise as often as possible in order to draw strength and inspiration from the light, as was the custom among the disciples of Pythagoras and other high initiates of Antiquity.
Getting up early counteracts tiredness
When some complained that they were too tired to get up early, he replied that in fact it would counteract the apparent feeling of tiredness: ‘When you are present as the sun rises, its rays dissolve the harmful fluidic layers that surround you, and the seeds that God has planted in your soul begin to germinate.’ Several of his followers soon vouched for the fact that the regular practice of attending the sunrise left them feeling stronger and more energetic; their complexion cleared, and they became more emotionally stable.
Mikhaël often assured them that the day would come when everyone would attend the sunrise and would live longer and healthier lives as a result.
Extracting Prana by deep conscious breathing
He also taught basic breathing exercises, recommending that they be practiced regularly every morning after the sunrise. Saying that the ‘essence of air’—that which Hindus call Prana—is life itself, he explained that deep, conscious breathing improves the circulation thus causing the organs of the body to function better: the brain can think more clearly and the heart and stomach can work more efficiently.
After explaining the traditional pattern of rhythmic breathing—inhaling to the count of four, holding one’s breath to the count of sixteen, and exhaling to the count of eight—he insisted that beginners should be very careful about trying to adopt a slower rhythm. They should do so only very gradually.
By conscious breathing you can extract and distil an essence from the air—call it Prana, or life, or whatever you please. When you inhale consciously through your nostrils the various ‘factories’ in your body work more efficiently to extract that essence from the air. If you breathe unconsciously they can extract no more than a thousandth part of that essence, and that is not enough for either your physical or your psychic life. It is by conscious breathing that you can get your brain to think more clearly, your heart to beat and to feel correctly, and your stomach to digest properly.
Read more about breathing exercises.