What Time Should You Wake Up?
In my previous articles, I have already touched on the importance of doing things at the right times, especially waking up and going to bed, but it appears to me more and more important as I study the scriptures. God Himself appears in the material world in the form of time. Thus, it is essential for us to live in accordance with the laws of time. Ignoring the commandments of nature can be more serious than we think, while following these simple rules will benefit us with spare time and new opportunities.
Modern science seems to rediscover what the Vedic culture has known for thousands of years: each period of the day has a purpose. All the systems of the body are ready to fulfill this specific task: the appropriate hormones are produced and the corresponding organ is active. If we play along, we win. If we do something different, all systems will suffer and eventually a disease will occur.
Commandment #1 tells us to live in accordance with the ruling dosha:
(For more about doshas see: What is Ayurveda)
Vata dosha (nervous system) is active from 2am until 6 am and
from 2 pm until 6 pm
Kapha dosha (anabolism, synthesis) 6am – 10am
6pm – 10pm
Pitta dosha (metabolism, breakdown) 10am – 2pm
10pm – 2am
Commandment #2 tells us to adjust our actions to the activity of the three modes of the material nature (gunas:) goodness (sattva,) passion (rajas,) and ignorance (tamas.)
(See more about gunas: The Three Gunas – the Never Ending Play of the Universe)
Goodness rules from 2 am until 10 am;
Passion 10 am – 6 pm;
Ignorance 6 pm – 2 am.
Commandment #3 tells us to act in accordance with the internal organ that is active at a given time (every two hours the active organ becomes passive and is the most vulnerable during the two hours following its activity peak). The following are the active times for different organs:
1 am – 3 am liver;
3 am – 5 am lungs;
5 am – 7 am large intestine;
7 am – 9 am stomach;
9 am – 11 am pancreas;
11 am – 1 pm heart and blood vessels;
1 pm – 3 pm small intestine and duodenum;
3 pm – 5 pm bladder;
5 pm – 7 pm kidneys;
7 pm – 9 pm endocrine system;
9 pm – 11 pm immune system;
11 pm – 1 am gallbladder.
These three commandments tell us the way to be healthy, positive, and cheerful:
According to comm. #1, the nervous system is active from 2 to 6 am. The only way to be active and adequate throughout the day is to get up between 2 and 6 am. Arousing after 6 am confuses the command post of our body – the nervous system — so it is difficult for it to give the right commands throughout the day.
According to comm. #2, the mode of goodness starts its activity at 2am, gradually rises and then ends at 10 am. Goodness means optimism, discrimination, and a positive outlook. We need this energy to be able to have these qualities during the day. If we wake up at 10, our day starts with passion (rajas) when it is very difficult to stay calm and see things as they are.
According to comm. #3, the lungs are most active from 3 to 5am. In the early morning hours, God pours mercy on us by the way of prana (life energy) in the form of negatively loaded ions of hydrogen. The maximum concentration of them circulates in the air during the two hours before sunrise. Our lungs, living with the rhythm of nature, are ready to assimilate this gift of God. To get this life energy for free, all we need to do is get up at that time.
In this way, all rhythms of the nature invoke us to get up early, preferably from 2 to 4am, but not later than 6am.
From common sense and from my own experience I know that there is no way to get up early except for going to bed early. The optimal time for getting to bed considering the above-mentioned commandments is between 7 and 10 pm. The first reason for this is that the time of ignorance begins at 6 pm and it is very natural to step into this mode by getting to bed. Reason number two is that the Kapha dosha is active from 6 to 10 pm. Kapha means peace, patience, and forgiveness. It is best to go to sleep before the mode of passion starts at 10 pm, which has quite the opposite qualities of rush, irritability, and competition. The third reason is that the endocrine and immune systems are active from 7 to 11 pm. At that time, the body is healing itself. If we disturb our body’s inborn intelligence with unnecessary activity, we will have to seek the help of doctors.
TODAY’S TIP: Some people may say that they or someone they know are very energetic at night, sleep all day long, and feel great. The Vedas explain that each of us has a certain amount of so-called white ojas, an essence that promotes and sustains our physical vitality, mental clarity, and overall health. It is a fixed amount meant to last a lifetime. When breaking the laws of nature we borrow this energy from our future. Maybe because of this, human beings very rarely live to be 120, the age they are supposed to live to according to the Vedas.
(See also: Where do Vata, Pitta and Kapha Come From)