How vast is our breath! When I was experiencing the limited ability to take a full breath because of my recent experience of bronchitis… at least the doctor said I had an “-itis” he said it was bronchitis. “-itis is a disease associated with inflammation” My annoying cough led me to find out from the doctor just what I didn’t have. So, happily I’m not contagious and no meds needed, I accepted my diagnosis with the same attitude I take whenever I have a physical setback. In this case I realized an even deeper awareness of the greatest of all functions to health – our breathing.
As a regular practitioner of Pranayama I already have a deep respect for the power and the insight of the Art of breathing. Particularly and sometimes unfortunately that insight is heightened when we lose some of that functionality. I do realize as I say that the most important of physical functionality is breathing that we can feel this way about any of our body parts when we lose the normalcy that we are so used to. If we can’t walk, we ogle over those who walk with ease. The same if we lose the clarity of youthful vision, or our hearing begins to degrade; as well as facing the loss of the use of any area of our mobility.
But as one of my teachers said, “We can live without food for a few weeks, water for a few days but we cannot live without breath for more than a minute or so.”
When I sit for a session of Pranayama there is magic happening before my eyes; i am invited to see the invisible through the transparency of each breath. The first breath shows me the state of my health. Does my breath move freely as I inhale? Do I experience pain? Sometimes the first breath painfully struggles and I can’t take a full inhale. By the third breath my body softens and painlessly breathes in without obstruction. How intriguing to witness, only through that first breath, the current state of my body. The pain and resistance given that first in-breath shows to me what I could be manifesting had I not engaged in Pranayama. As my breath massages upwards, backwards, and sideways like a strong breeze clearing out the city pollution, it is as though instant healing takes place.
When the weather is unusually hot then it is due to climate change. If it is unusually cold it is also due to climate change. It is safe to say all change in weather is due to climate change.
In the vastness of our breath the extremes of our emotional and physical climate can be changed. Our own internal climate can be changed by the art of the breath.
Anxiety is helped by consciously slowing down your breathing
Fatigue can be cleared with deep breathing
Insomnia is helped by slow deep breathing
If you are in pain, breathe into the pain and often pain will subside
Depression can be lifted by focused deep breathing.
We can even change our own feeling of being too hot or too cold with breathing techniques.
It is safe to say that breathing awareness will change the climate of your mind and your body.
What happened to my body on the exhale? I can’t completely exhale while I have this itis. I can’t completely inhale either. (Emoji sad face.) Then the moment happens when I can take my breath up without triggering a cough so the light has turned on in that bronchial tunnel and again my breathing eye shows me that I am getting better and my breath renews my spirits, it is renewing my health, and happily the climate of my body and mind continues to change.