On Breathing

by Kristine Enger

Most of us take our breath for granted. In fact, we don’t pay too much attention to our breathing at all. Our breath is of no real concern, we breathe and that’s it.

As children, we played games trying to hold our breaths to see what would happen next, before the life force energy, seemingly all by itself, would draw the next breath on our behalf, overriding our best efforts.

Or as we explore, for a minute or two, a different universe underwater, before we rise to the surface and triumphantly, with what seems like a roar, fill our lungs with life again. How sweet the breath feels in that moment!

As humans, we endlessly search. We even travel to faraway lands, seek out gurus and teachers; for meaning, for answers, for our purpose, for the Divine.

As we breathe, could what we seek be hidden within the energy of the breath of life? The breath is, after all, how our human life began and how it eventually one day will end.

To connect to our breathing through focused attention can come off to a shaky start. Staccato at best, making strange sounds, feeling stuck in places. Alien and bizarre. We can even get panicky with such attention to our breath. Why is it that what gives us life feels so strange and unfamiliar?

Through practice, as our breath begins to soften, becoming clearer and less restricted, we can become aware that we are breathing in not just life, but also inspiration, ideas, forming insights about our burning questions. Connecting to our innermost wisdom, as our breath flows evermore sweetly, peaceful and loving. It can even feel as if we are drawing in creation itself, as it moves through us.  In and out, in and out.

We breathe creation, creation breathes us, as the breath intelligently, safely takes us from moment to moment, creating each moment anew. Becoming one with the breath, we have a say in how the next moment unfolds. What our response will be. We can connect, direct and create life in this way. Moment by moment. Breath by breath.

 

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