If there is something that I love is to read articles and reports about academic studies that validate the benefits of meditation and the overall yoga practice. I am not going to write about that, but about something really important in which yogins are proven to be right: it is possible to have a happy mind.
In this path, we pay a lot of attention the the breath and its qualities, some even count the duration of their lives based on the number of breaths taken. There are schools centered exclusively on the study of the breath and those who hop on a yoga mat, do pranayama, breathing exercises that expand vital force, during the asanas and as a practice in itself.
From early on, yogins realized that breathing consciously is the most direct way to calm the incessant movements of the mind, to regulate the nervous system and allow the parasympathetic response of relaxation to be dominant. Breathing correctly is the best antidote against stress and the fastest way to a happy mind. Especially useful and harmless for those affected by stress disorders (and their physiological consequences), anxiety or depression.
If we want to explore our inner world, it is almost impossible to do it when we are under the influence of stress, exhausted or burdened by the thousands of social demands. For meditation and inner evolution we need a personal environment of peace and tranquility. I do live in the world, like you, there are also days that happen at the speed of light and months when there is too much in my calendar, but I sit or lie down and breath consciously for a while because know that it brings me back to my body-mind-heart.
Thank goodness modern yogins breathe victoriously uprising and untangling all those mental skeins that cause so much pain! May we breathe and fill the world with peace and love.