Are you aware of your breath ? 20000 to 25000 times a day, the breath is happening. A life’s wonder. Constant miracle. Unfortunately, breathing has become so automatic and unconscious in our often hectic lifestlyles that we don’t fully appreciate this precious gift from mother Nature.
What if we took a moment to feel one breath ? And another one. Perfect mechanism of the inhalation bringing oxygen to nourish each and every cell and the exhalation releasing carbon dioxyde. Try feeling the downward movement of the diaphragm on the inhale, the expansion of the thoracic cage in all directions and the subtle rising of the clavicules.
If we can survive three weeks without food and three days without water, how long will we remain alive without air ?
The importance of breath shall not be limited to the physical level. Actually, breathing is viewed as a bridge between body and mind, a path to the soul.
Next time you get angry or impatient, note how your breath is behaving. Is it slower or faster ? Do the same when you are calmly focused on something. What is your experience ? The interconnexion between the mental state and the breath is evident and has been showed in yogic texts long time ago [Patanjali Yoga Sutras; sutra 1.31: “Pain, depression, shaking of the body and unrhythmic breathing are the accompanying symptoms of mental distraction.” Hatha Yoga Pradipika; verse 2.2: “When prana moves, chitta (the mental force) moves. When prana is without movement, chitta is without movement. By this (steadiness of prana) the yogi attains steadiness and should thus restrain the vayu (air).]
Yoga teaches and trains us to modify our breath voluntarily in order to control and modify our mental state. With regular and continuous practice, one is no more a slave of their thoughts and emotions but becomes their master.
Happy breaths to all