Art of Living Course begins Sept. 28 in Rockford

StoryImage( ‘/Images/Story//Auto-img-119074549520131.jpg’, ‘Image courtesy of‘, ‘Sudarshan Kriya is a special, rhythmic breathing pattern, whose health benefits are being validated by modern science.’);

The Art of Living Foundation (AOLF), an international non-governmental organization in special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council, will conduct a Part 1 course at Rockford College, 5050 E. State St. The course will run from Sept. 28 to Oct. 1 in Grace Roper Lounge. Hours are 6:30-9:30 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekends.

The Foundation, one of the world’s largest volunteer-based organizations, is offering this course as part of its campaign for a “Stress-Free Violence-Free America,” launched for its 25th anniversary celebration March 28, at the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.

Founded in 1981 by Sri Sri Ravishankar, who has been nominated for the past several years and also this year for the Nobel Peace Prize, the AOLF programs have benefited an estimated 20 million people in more than 140 countries. The core of the workshop is the Sudarshan Kriya, a special, rhythmic breathing pattern, whose health benefits are being validated by modern science (see Independent research has shown that the Sudarshan Kriya reduces the level of cortisol (the stress hormone) in the body, benefits the immune system, helps reduce cholesterol, provides relief from depression and symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder such as insomnia, fear, anxiety and grief. Participants have reported a physical, mental, emotional and spiritual transformation that is genuine and lasting. Many have also reported an increase in energy, improved focus, a renewed enthusiasm for life, and a greater degree of happiness and well-being.

Stress, anxiety and depression are known to be significant factors in the onset and progression of a wide spectrum of illnesses ranging from cancer and HIV-1 infection, to asthma and cardiovascular disease. It has been medically proven that stress creates and stores toxins in the system, causing various diseases.

The Art of Living workshop uses the secret of the breath to address this problem. They say, “Eighty-five percent of the toxins can be eliminated through our breath. Unfortunately, most of us use only 33 percent of our lung capacity.” The Art of Living workshop teaches simple, yet powerful breathing techniques that have a unique advantage over many other forms of treatment, as these are free from unwanted side effects, cut health care costs and are easy to learn and practice in daily life.

Course instructor Michael Fischmann is a warm, funny, inspiring speaker, and a leader in the field of personal development. He is one of the founding members and current president of the U.S.-Art of Living Foundation. He is also the CEO of the APEX course, the corporate training division of The International Association of Human Values. A former advertising executive with Ogilvy and Mather, Fischman currently travels across the USA and around the world teaching personal development seminars that offer tools that bring greater peace, energy, awareness, and joy to daily life. Past clients include the World Bank, IBM, Shell Oil, Tyco Electronics, the United Nations, U.S. Department of Probation, Nova University, Washington, D.C. Police Department, Washington D.C. Department of Finance, various drug rehabilitation clinics, prisons and rotary clubs.

Course fee is $375 or $200 for full-time students, senior citizens and educators. Register at

For more information or for a free introductory seminar, contact Sonia Arora, (815) 793-3207 or, or on the Web at

from the Sept. 26 – Oct. 2, 2007, issue

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