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The Mindfulness of Breathing

The Mindfulness of Breathing

Stage 1

In the first stage we count after each out breath, and at the tenth breath we return to one and repeat our cycle. Our focus is the breath, the counting should be light, just an aid to
concentration. If the mind wanders gently but firmly reset your attention on the breath and begin the count at one again.

Stage 2

Secondly we anticipate the breath, counting before each in breath, as before up to ten returning whenever we notice that we have lost our concentration with the breath.

Stage 3

Thirdly we just breathe, and focus on the journey of the breath through the body.

Stage 4

Fourthly we bring our awareness to the first point of contact with the body. This could be the tip of the nose or the top of the lip, it doesn’t matter where it is, just stay with your perception of this point. The experience becomes more refined like magnifying a picture and becoming aware of greater detail and beauty…like snowflakes, crystals or a single dewdrop on a dew covered tree. As we surrender more to more to the actuality and presentness of our experience the breath becomes like a river we are watching, a river which captures our heart. We become the breath more and more. It flows through us leading us to a world that is brighter clearer and more alive!

We can carry on in this way and if it we feel it appropriate we can let go of the counting altogether, just being luminously aware of the breath. Conclude the practice by just sitting with
a broad awareness of yourself, reflecting on any changes in your mental state. Preparing to re-engage mindfully with the next part of your day.

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