The phrenic nerve originates in the emotional center of the brain. It runs through the throat and splits -- one piece of the nerve going past the heart -- the two pieces of the nerve rejoin in the diaphragm. We breath day and night, filling the lungs, pushing against the diaphragm and stomach. We do this automatically, but it's important to remember that the phrenic nerve originates in the emotional center of the brain. When we have significant emotional events, we always have a physical feelings in the stomach -- butterflies, ulcers, vomiting -- it's the phrenic nerve reacting because we're feeling it from the emotional center. We're told, take a deep breath -- this helps free the phrenic nerve from its spasm -- the breath stretches the nerve out and calms down the spasms.
I learned all this from a fabulous woman named Sue Parker, who teaches music and singing. I went to her on a Fifth Chakra "field day" to help open up my throat. In singing, she said, we're constantly filling the body with air, releasing the phrenic nerve and the emotional center of the brain. Singing makes us feel better! With the release of all the air we begin a "dumping" of all the emotional stuff that has been stored inside. Singing releases the same endorphins as laughter.
When the throat chakra is blocked, we separate from the chorus of life. There's a block in the discharge of energy. The throat closes down, bottling up the emotions, annihilating our ideas before they can make it out of our mouth. We hide behind silence.
Practice deep breathing through the mouth, filling the diaphragm. Expel the breath in a sound, singing different vowels, or just sounds. Singing is a full body experience, Sue said. I left my lesson exhausted and sweating, feel-good endorphins running all through my body!