It is a tragedy that the great wisdom and knowledge of the Lamas has been lost over the hundreds of years of the Rites'
existence. It would be most beneficial to know for example; why they instructed us to spin clockwise only during the 1st
Colonel Bradford's book only gives instructions to spin in a clockwise direction.
In the absence of this traditional knowledge, people (including myself) have adapted the Rites to suit their philosophy or
in accordance with their own experience.
However one of these adaptations that I do not agree with is to spin clockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and anti-
clockwise in the Southern hemisphere.
When I ask people why they think they should change the direction of their Spin - most of them quote the following myth:
Just as water spirals down the sink, in apparently different directions, some people believe that we should adjust the
direction of our spin in accordance with the Coriolis Effect which is created by the rotation of the Earth. If this were the
case, we should spin anti-clockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere. But what
should we do on the Equator?
In actuality, the measurable effect of this scientific phenomenon on the normal water spiraling down the sink is a myth -
unless the sink is the size of a small ocean. The rotation of the Earth, and thereby the Coriolis force, is only one full
rotation per day - extremely minor”. Extract from T5T – The Five Tibetan Exercise Rites (Penguin)."
Alistair B. Fraser, Ph.D. Emeritus Professor of Meteorology, Penn State University, U.S.A;explains in great detail
(Reprinted with permission of author):
“The direction of rotation in draining sinks and toilets is not determined by the rotation of the Earth, but by rotation that
was introduced earlier when it was being filled or subsequently being disturbed (say by washing). The rotation of the
Earth does influence the direction of rotation of large weather systems and large vortices in the oceans, for these are
very long-lived phenomena and so allow the very weak Coriolis force to produce a significant effect, with time”.
The degree of Coriolis Effect on a spinning human being would therefore be negligible and impossible to gauge
Barbara Ann Brennan, ex NASA research scientist and noted authority on the human energy field, says in her successful
book, Hands of Light:
"When the chakras are functioning normally, each will be "open", spinning clockwise to metabolize the particular
energies needed from the universal field. A clockwise spin draws energy from the UEF (Universal Energy Field) into the
chakra, very much like the right-hand rule in electromagnetism, which states that a changing magnetic field around a
wire will induce a current in that wire.
When the chakra spins counter clockwise, the current is flowing outward from the body, thus interfering with metabolism.
In other words, the energies that are needed and that we experience as psychological reality are not flowing into the
chakra when it is spinning counter clockwise. We thus label the chakra as "closed" to incoming energies”.
Throughout history Tibet and India have shared ancient knowledge, and it is possible - but unproven - that the first Rite
could also have been influenced by the practice of Pradakshina.
In Hinduism, Pradakshina means the act of worshipful circumambulation (walking clockwise around a holy temple, shrine,
or place). Dakshina means right, so you walk to the left keeping the spiritual object on your right.
To perform Pradakshina you walk clockwise around a temple, sacred object, person, mountain, place or even oneself.
Hindu temples are designed with special passages, so that people can perform these clockwise movements around them.
The purpose of this clockwise circling is to center or purify oneself, or to honor or bond with the object of devotion.
Circumambulation is so common in fact that it can be found in the Greek, Roman, Druid and Hindu cultures. Usually it had
to do with sacrifice or purification processes. Interestingly, in all these cultures the direction was always the same -
clockwise! For more information see www.sacred-texts.com
Unless documents or a teacher are found, all attempts at understanding the motive for Rite No 1 therefore can only be
During one of my classes, a dance teacher told me that children are initially taught to spin clockwise. Apparently they find
it easier (although there are always exceptions). She said it is well known amongst dance teachers - that if you want to
calm children down, you get them to spin anti-clockwise. To energize them, you get them to spin clockwise!
This energizing effect is exactly what most people experience doing Rite No 1 as described by Colonel Bradford. In my
view - if the lamas gave instructions to Spin clockwise - then clockwise it is!
"…The sky is round, and I have heard the earth is round like a ball, and so are all the stars. The wind in its greatest
power whirls. Birds make their nest in circles, for theirs is the same religion as ours.
The sun comes forth and goes down again in a circle. The moon does the same, and both are round. Even the seasons
form a great circle in their changing, and always come back again to where they were. The life of man is a circle from
childhood to childhood,and so it is in everything where power moves…"
Black Elk, Sioux Holy Man
Copyright (c) 2005 Carolinda Witt - author T5T - The Five Tibetan Exercise Rites and The 10-Minute Rejuvenation Plan
Carolinda Witt - Author
of The 10-minute