Holotropic breathwork is a powerful method that can help you find a profound sense of self. The practice involves reducing the amount of oxygen in your lungs to induce an altered state of consciousness. During the session, you may feel as though you are in a dream and have vivid images and sounds. You may even hear voices you’ve never heard before! Holotropic breathwork is best performed by a trained holotropic facilitator who has undergone certification through the Grof Transpersonal Training Program.
The music played during a holotropic breathing workshop is designed to encourage a shift in consciousness. The music usually begins with light, rhythmic drumming and progresses to a heart-centered piece of music. The music is designed to elicit deep, meditative breathing, and to trigger the breather’s creative expression. The music will usually have a strong emotional arc and may even trigger regressed longings for sexual or nurturing encounters. In either case, the facilitator will help the breather navigate these feelings by guiding them through a group discussion. The practice can last anywhere from two to three hours.
Holotropic breathwork is most commonly practiced in a group setting, although individual sessions are also possible. In a group setting, people are usually paired up into a breather and a sitter role. The breather lies down while the sitter supports and guides them. The sitter’s role is to ensure that the breather is safe and comfortable, but should not interfere with the breather’s experience.