Breathing is the action of merging with life. When you think about something or someone that you love. When you are with that person or enjoying an experience that you love, you can take in a very big breath. You can also exhale in a way that brings total relaxation to your body and to your mind. All things that we want to merge with; we drink in energy, love of any person, place, or thing through our inhalation. One deep, full breath merges our life in very moment with the environment around us. We meld with our environment through a breathing. IF you are in love, make love, enjoy smelling a flower, a box of strawberries or chocolate or simply a moment of peaceful relaxation, you want to breathe so deeply to merge with that experience of beauty you are loving. When my mind completely merges with my breath, at that moment in time I forget myself and simply become part of what I am involved with. In those quick seconds or minutes there is no resistance.
Remember walking along the seaside or through the mountains. What brings back the ethereal experience of the memory? Visual experiences can change from environmental changes, changes in population or style, but the smell and vibration doesn’t change. We remember the air by the quality, scent and the and spirit of the air that you breath. We remember from the deep breath that merged us with that experience.
On the other side of this is the feeling of smelling something very unpleasant. In this situation you avoid taking any deep breaths. If you find yourself in the company of someone distasteful, you may feel claustrophobic. You don’t want to even sit too close to them. The last thing you want to do is to take a deep breath. You don’t want to merge with that experience.
When do you exhale? Do you really completely breathe out, completely letting go? That “sigh of relief” that says relaxation. Movement through the body requires complete and balanced, rhythmic respiration- exhale and inhale. Notice what allows your exhalation. Notice that feeling that brings on that really big exhale. Watch what inspires big inhales and what inspires big exhales.
As autumn passes, watch how a leaf falls from a tree. You see how a leaf will swoop down then rise back up dancing from side to side gliding on the breeze surrounding it on its descending journey.
I think of my body as being supported in a similar way by my breath. I feel the lightness of space as I move into any posture led by the intelligence of the tidal rhythm of my breath and moving along the wave-like ripples that my mind can follow. One student said it perfectly. She discovered the demand of concentration, which brought her to this insight. She reflected in a moment following a posture, “I have to watch myself with every breath.” This is true, so simple, yet so difficult to attain.
Breath gives life. It gives intelligence to the brain. The breath is your bigger brain. While doing yoga, look to your breath for answers, not your brain. Let your brain pause to listen through your breath, and sooner or later, calm insight will effortlessly take you where you want to go.