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Season 1 - Episode 2

I Am Being Breathed

20 min - Practice


I>It's not about achieving something, but receiving something. Meditation is part of any serious spiritual search, so we begin our journey together with a meditation. We pay attention to the breath as a way to quiet the mind. We notice that breathing happens: "I am not breathing, I am being breathed". Together, we learn to balance relaxation and activity to achieve the optimal posture for meditation. A body scan helps us notice how awareness enhances different parts of the body as we place our attention on them, and feel gratitude for this precious body we inhabit.
What You'll Need: No props needed


Read Full Transcript

We first of all begin with the obvious fact that you or I did not create ourselves. If I reflect on this even for a few minutes, one naturally wonders, who has created me and why? Throughout human history, according to the sages, these are among the most important questions that engage a human being. Who am I and why am I here? And I invite us to focus a little bit on our breathing. Again we have a tendency to say, I am breathing as if I created this breathing apparatus. The fact is that I am being breathed. We even have specific remarks like this in the Bible, for example in the book of Genesis, that God created human beings from the earth, then he breathed his own breath into them to make them alive. What does it mean? As long as I am alive or you are alive, we are being breathed by the breath of God. And when that breath or life energy leaves this body, this body will expire. Of course in slightly different language, similar remarks by Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita, this is actually true about all the sages. A reminder again and again that I, you, have been created only for a few decades for some purpose. And a constant reminder that to relate with that purpose one needs to connect with something far subtler than the mind. So one of the fundamental requirements for any meditational practice is to find some way of quieting our mind.

The ordinary mind is always jumping from one association to another. And a little quieting can actually take place if I pay attention to my breathing, not trying to hold my breath outside or inside, but simply watching that breathing is taking place and that this breathing apparatus is not created by me. It's the breath of God. The word God gets used sometimes in different ways, so very subtle conscious energies pervading the whole universe are being breathed through my body, keeping it alive. And as I pay attention to my breathing, naturally the breathing gets deepened without artificially forcing it. This is an important principle. Anything that I become aware of changes in its quality. So simply paying attention to the fact that breathing is taking place without holding my breath outside or inside. And the call by all the sages is for us to connect with these subtle energies pervading the whole universe. So it is not a matter of myself achieving something, but receiving something, being blessed by these subtle energies or by God, if you like that expression. What is required for that is more and more receptivity on my part, actually more and more freedom from my activity, but the kind of activity that makes me more receptive. And the fundamental feature of receptivity is a requirement for receptivity is relaxation. So take a few moments now to see if your body is as relaxed as possible, but at the same time activity that I don't simply just fall asleep or begin to daydream. So more and more relaxation and connection with this divine energy entering into me through my breath. In addition to physical relaxation we also need to find the right posture so that these energies can go through my body much more without hindrance. And the general suggestion is that if my eyes were open I should be able to look horizontally, not looking up as is often the case in postures of prayer that actually interferes with breathing. So locating myself with the verticality in the back without rigidity and if eyes were open looking horizontally and not holding my breath inside or outside. And then this life energy entering into me through my breath is keeping everything in my body alive. So I take a few moments now to see if I can sense the life energy in various parts of my body. For example, can I sense the life energy in my right leg? Again remembering that I did not create this right leg. So even a sort of gratitude for the fact that these limbs exist, now I sense the life energy in my left leg. And you would notice that as I pay attention to my left leg there is a different quality of energy not only sensed by me but it is enhanced by my attention. And then the life energy in the whole of the pelvic area again and again a reminder to remain relaxed and not to hold my breath outside or inside. Abdomen, chest, throat, Now I turn my attention to my right arm, the whole of the arm sensing it as deeply as inside as I can, the energy keeping it alive from the shoulder to the fingertips the whole of the arm.

Left arm Now I turn my attention to the back, again the whole of the back from the neck to the base of the spine. Watching carefully whether the right side of my spine is now more active or the left side. Can I sense more energy on one side or the other side or even slightly enhanced temperature? Now I shift my attention to the head, again not simply accepting something but to really be searching, looking. Is there more sense of space in my head or more obscurity? Now quite intentionally I try to sense the life energy in the whole of my body from the top of the head to the toes without holding my breath out or in. Breath of God keeping this body alive, Breath of God keeping this body alive, Breath of God keeping this body alive, Breath of God keeping this body alive, Breath of God keeping this body alive, Breath of God keeping this body alive, Breath of God keeping this body alive, Breath of God keeping this body alive, Now we take three more breaths before we stop. Later on in your own notebook you write what kind of questions actually arise for you from this kind of search. All serious meditation is a part of serious spiritual search. Thank you very much.


Kate M
1 person likes this.
Such a powerful guided meditation practice. Ravi ji takes us into deep relaxation and awareness so beautifully. Thank you for this : )
Alana Mitnick
Kate M So delighted that you are here with us! I agree! These teachings are powerful and potent. Grateful for your presence. xoA

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