Breath meditation, is a pleasant way to relax completely. The physical benefits include relaxation, improvement of sleeping patterns, lowering of high blood pressure and speedier recovery from fatigue.
If you are aware of yourself becoming tense, set aside 10 minutes at the end of each day to relax (or make time in the middle of the day if you need it). The important thing is to run slowly through this progressive relaxation checklist step by step.
- Be aware of your body. Tense every little bit of your body, then make a conscious effort to relax every part. Bunch your toes, then free them, clench your thigh and buttock muscles, then let them relax, pull in your stomach muscles and let them go, hunch your shoulders, then relax them, clench and relax your hands several times.
- Monitor your breathing patterns. Take note of how you are breathing is the pattern slow and regular? If not, inhale deeply and slowly, hold your breath for a couple of seconds, then release it again, letting your body relax completely as you exhale.
- Correct your position. Sitting, standing and walking badly can also produce knots and tightness in the muscles in your back, neck and shoulders. It is vital that you study the way that you sit, stand and move and work on correcting any postures that cause tension in your body.
Breath meditation is very simple but not necessarily easy without practice. The breath, or Holy Spirit, is the animating force of the body. Without breathing there is no life.
The Animating Force
A focused breath meditation is very simple but not necessarily easy without practice. The breath, or Holy Spirit, is the animating force of the body. Without breathing there is no life. This breath is part of the mechanics of the feminine force or Mother figure in The Trinity. The Father or mental is the initiator, or catalyst, of the breath. Genesis 2:7, "And the LORD God (Father) formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul." Bringing your consciousness to your breath is an effective way to start and maintain meditation.
The most basic way to do mindful breathing meditation is simply to focus your attention on your breath, the inhale and exhale. You can do this while standing, but ideally you’ll be sitting or even lying in a comfortable position. Your eyes may be open or closed, but you may find it easier to maintain your focus if you close your eyes. It can help to set aside a designated time for this exercise, but it can also help to practice it when you’re feeling particularly stressed or anxious. Experts believe a regular practice of mindful breathing can make it easier to relax yourself in difficult situations.
Observe Your Breath
Find a comfortable position for your body. Sitting is often recommended. It will help keep the body awake and allow energy to flow freely. You may also try lying flat on your back or even standing. You may sit on a yoga mat, meditation cushion or chair. Find what feels comfortable and sustainable for the duration of the meditation. Gently close your eyes. If you are more comfortable with your eyes open, try softly gazing at the floor, or ceiling (depending on your position). Allow the eyes to relax and rest on one spot. The idea is to minimize distractions in your practice.
Bring awareness to your abdomen. Relaxing the muscles there, see if you can feel the natural rising and falling. Imagine the body is breathing itself. From the navel around to the obliques, notice the movement with each breath. Take a few deep breaths like this. Move your awareness up to your chest. As you inhale, tune in to the expansion of the lungs and the rising of the chest. As you exhale, feel the contraction and movement. See if you can follow the feeling of the breath from the beginning of your inhalation through to the end of your exhalation. Now bring your attention to the nostrils. The feeling of the breath may be more subtle here. Try taking a deep breath to see what is present for you. You may notice a slight tickle at the tip of your nose as you breath in. You may notice the breath is slightly warmer as you breath out. Try closing off the right nostril for a few breaths and then the left nostril, for further breathing awareness. Rest your awareness of the body breathing in one of these three spots. When the mind wanders, refocus on the direct experience of the breath. Continue to observe the breath for a minute or two. Wrapping up this mindful experience, bring this awareness with you back to your everyday life. Stay in touch with the breath in your body to help the mind remain present.
You may find that your mind wanders, distracted by thoughts or bodily sensations. That’s okay. Just notice that this is happening and gently bring your attention back to your breath.