Breathing is something we are doing every moment we are alive. But breathing does not only keep our body alive, it can keep our spirit alive as well. Breathing is the secret to discovering our depths and reaching the sky.
Breathing is one of the simplest forms of meditation. By focusing on the sensation of breathing, you automatically relax. Your heart rate and breathing rate slow down. With time your breathing becomes deeper without trying. If in the beginning you are breathing from your chest, with your chest rising and falling, as your chest and abdomen relax, you will begin to breathe from your upper and then lower abdomen.
When you breathe from your lower abdomen, your diaphram extends more and you take in more air. Your brain gets more oxygen. Your breaths are longer and slower, keeping you in a restful and peaceful state—one in which the parasympathetic branch of your autonomic nervous system is activated.
Abdominal breathing circulates your body’s energy healthfully in a Water Up, Fire Down
cycle. Hot fire energy generated in your heart goes down and gathers in your lower abdomen. Your furnace-like energy center there uses that fire power to shoot the energy up to your kidneys, which cool it down with water energy that travels up to your head and finally down to your heart once more. Water Up, Fire Down is the ideal state for your body and mind.
In this state, your perception and awareness change. Your consciousness is immersed in the present moment. Because your brain waves are slower in this relaxed but awake state, your awareness is able to sink from the thinking of your conscious mind into the myriad memories, emotions, and ideas swimming around in your unconscious mind. With increased awareness of your unconscious mind, you are able to see, and release with each breath, the energy of whatever has been stored there. The mental baggage of your unconscious mind is usually put away without your conscious permission. However, by making yourself aware of what’s there through breathing, you can clear it out or make it work for your goals.
Deeper than your unconscious mind, however, at the very bottom of your consciousness, you can meet the greater consciousness and energy of the source of life. It is a state of oneness and revelation. In this place, you meet your true self, your divinity
At this level, you can see all things clearly, you can integrate the knowledge you’ve acquired and truly make it your own, and you can create change with a heart alive with passion.
Mindful Breathing Practice
Straighten your spine in a way that is comfortable, not forced, so that your brain is not under pressure. Breath will enter your body comfortably only when you're well centered. Keep your legs uncrossed and put a comfortable smile on your face. These three things are the basics.
You shouldn't do unnatural and painful breathing, such as forcing yourself to take long breaths or holding your breath. You shouldn't breathe too rapidly, and you'll get drowsy if you breathe too slowly. Just breathe very simply.
As you breathe, focus solely on the energy center in your lower abdomen. Don't concern yourself with the different phenomena that appear before your eyes—with seeing auras, with darkness or brightness. Just watch your energy center and discard thoughts that would rush you.
You may find yourself vibrating as energy accumulates in your abdomen. This is natural and ok. Keep focusing on your energy center, letting yourself vibrate. The vibrations will disappear, and your body will start to grow warmer. This is when Water Up, Fire Down circulation will begin, making your head clearer. This is a state without any desire, fear, loneliness, or boredom.
Then, like a dragon appearing out of deep waters, the true nature that is the master of life, divinity, will appear. When you have encountered that, the ecstasy is indescribable. That is the mystery of the human body. Once you experience that, you won't be so caught up or led by worldly things.
Live within breathing. Everything will look new if you do. Rocks will seem new, trees will seem new, and even the stars of heaven will seem new. With mindful breathing practice, you'll feel your cells awakening and your consciousness awakening.