Laughter Yoga and Spirituality

Sukumar Satpathy

Charlotte Eaton, UK: I was among the 24 participants in the Laughter Yoga course together with a journalist, from New Yorker magazine. We spent five days learning about the health benefits of laughter, how to run sessions including anything from corporate teambuilding to those for seniors in care homes and laughing more than I’ve ever laughed before. It was an incredible experience, a physical workout, a freeing up of emotions and complete mental relaxation. I enjoyed ‘laughter meditations’ the best as it was like a spiritual experience. It was amazing to lie and listen to the laughter ripple across the room, igniting one person and then another, and then to feel it ripple through me also.

There were lots of life-changing moments during the course, and most seemed to inspire to use Laughter Yoga to help others – as a tool for altruism. I had to be honest and admit that I wasn’t motivated only by altruism but also by the pure joy and freedom of laughing. For me an unexpected outcome was to find a space in which I can just laugh freely. (I spent my entire time at school being kicked out of lessons, concerts, assemblies etc. for getting uncontrollable laughter). The fact that it is so good for you and such an enjoyable thing to share is wonderful.