There is nothing more magical and mundane than breath.
And when you breathe, you dance with this energy. Every day, every moment.
In a short book I offered a few years ago, I wrote about breath and Being Breath. I introduced two aspects of breath – this immediate breath and the timeless breath.
“This is this breath, the one happening right now. This is the breath of mindfulness. The mindful breath that enters and exits our body in constant movement from birth until death is an immediate, intimate breath. This breath cannot exist anywhere but now.
The breath of awareness is a pervasive breath that exists beyond time and any one locale. We can think of it as spirit, energy, or particles.
Breath is both immediate and timeless, intimately present and universal.“
-From BeingBreath: An Introduction to Experiencing Life As It Is
When you breathe with an awareness of both types of breath, it is easy to sense the magic of the mundane.
Try it (and skipping ahead to the next bold text without actually trying this isn’t going to allow you to actually GET IT. Pause with me…):
Breathe. Don’t try to deepen your breath, breathe slower, or change anything about your breathing. Change, instead, your awareness and attention. As your thoughts wander (as they almost certainly will), simply return your attention to your breath. Inhale, exhale, pause.
Begin to envision your breath as an energy flowing throughout your body (like electricity flowing within your home). See and feel it flowing through every part of your body – from your toes to your fingertips, behind your knees to behind your ears.
Think of what this breath is doing to your body, to each and every cell. Feel (not just think, but feel) how each inhale energizes you and each exhale allows you to release a bit of what you no longer need. Stay with this as long as you are able.
When your thoughts start to wander again, turn your attention to the environment immediately around you. Envision the breath that flows in and out of you as part of a pool of air in which the objects in your surroundings also swim. Each light bulb, each chair cushion, each thread in your clothes, caressed by the breath that flows in and out of your lungs.
If you happen to be in the presence of others (and if you aren’t now, I recommend trying this later when you are), envision them as swimmers in this pool of breath. They exhale, you inhale. Same air. Same breath.
The trees around you (again, find some and practice later if you happen to be indoors) – they breathe too. You exhale and fill them with life. They exhale and return the life-giving oxygen to you.
The breath helps give us a peek into what is actually happening in this very moment: Energy flowing in, out, around, and through all things. Your smartphone, the coffee-stained cup on the counter, the stranger rushing past – each part of this mundane moment is connected in this pool of breath. How wickedly wild is that?
The more that you breathe (and thank heavens that you are), the more moments you have to practice, to live, to feel alive. There is no waiting for what might be – the magic of life is happening right in this mundane moment.
Dive into breath and live, my dear, …. live.
About Lisa Renee Wilson
I am honored to be your host for this journey! I am an Awareness Artist who shares her world work through Being Breath (www.BeingBreath.com). As a parent, artist, contemplative, meditator, yoga practitioner, introvert, runner, blogger, photographer, and iced-chai addict, I practice the art of mindful awareness throughout all of my daily activities. From playing with perspectives to playing in paint, no moments are off limits for exploration.