Ch. 03: Your Breath
There are a couple of physical matters going on in your body all the time – one is the breath. It’s an excellent subject to center on and the basis of meditation.
When you observe the breath there are a lot of things to observe… The pace of taking a breath… the consistency of the tempo of breathing- does it always remain same as you sit?
The smoothness of the breath – or the abnormality of it… The depth or shallowness of breath… and, does it alter over time or is each breath a carbon copy of the last? Where do you sense the breath? Your nose? Your throat? Your mouth? Your lungs? Your tummy? Do you observe your diaphragm muscle beneath your ribs contracting and decompressing to enable you to breathe?
Commonly individuals keep their mouths closed and breath through the nose – but if you’re a cold or a nasal condition that forbids you from doing so then breathing through the mouth is all right… But, your mouth might become really dry with sitting a while.
So observe your breath… at what point does it enter and leave the body? What physical sense does it produce? Where precisely is that sensation? A few of us feel it at the tip of the nose… a few further up the nose… where do you feel it? The breath is the center meditation.
Truly, only 2 things are required for excellent changes to happen inside your brain… a focus on the breath and mindfulness during the day when not meditating.
Begin your common sitting session with getting comfy in your sitting posture and watch all the matters going on with your body and brain… attempt to unwind and calm the brain down… Observe the physical sensations happening…
Observe the breath.
Watch the breath.
Observe where the breath enters and exits the body at the nose. Attempt to narrow your focus to simply a small place in the nose where the breath may be felt entering and exiting the body. It’s this tiny area of centering that’s crucial to meditation. Once you discover the spot to center on, do so.
Your brain will likely still be filled up with additional thoughts and you do occasionally feel your body crying for attention – a cramp, a little back pain, a little foot pain, muscle pain…And that’s what is going to occur… it’s supposed to occur… so you’ll know that, at this point, you’re on the correct trail.
You’re doing what you have to be doing…center on the breath at that little point in your nose. Watch that spot for the whole in-breath and the whole out-breath.
As you observe that the attention of your brain has shifted from the breath to whatever other thought disturbed, re-focus on the breath at that little spot in your nose. That’s all… that’s the major effort of meditation in this style. Center on the breath – your whole attention is on the breath for the in- and out- breaths.
Don’t get angry at yourself… it’s not a competition to do it properly… it’s quite impossible for anybody to center on the breath with total attention soon after beginning meditation-just keep re-focusing on the breath.
Sooner or later you’ll reach a point where you are able to watch in full attention one whole breath without disruption. When you accomplish that, and it might take a week, it might take a month… it might take three months. But, when you accomplish that – one major stumbling block is gone…
Later on try to be able to count ten full breaths in total attention – in succession one after another.