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Mindful Breathing

Updated: Apr 10, 2020

We promised you in a previous post that we would discuss breathing techniques. According to Bhante Gunaratana, the author of Mindfulness in Plan English,

Sit. Once you are sitting, do not change positions. You should place yourself in the most comfortable position but after a while, you may become uncomfortable, but do not change position.

Be motionless.

Relax your hands, cup position, facing up.

Close your eyes.

Keep your mind in the present.

-Take three deep breaths.

-Now breath normally.

-Begin to focus on the rims of your nostrils.

-Inhale, brief pause, exhale.

-Focus on your breath and ignore everything else.

-Your breath will be short as you are not yet calm.

-As you continue, you will become calmer.

-Your mind will wander; bring your thoughts back to your breathing by counting.

-Inhale and count in your mind: one, one, one, one.

-Breath out and count: two, two, two two.

-Breath in and count: three, three, three., three.

Gunaratana speaks of vipassana meditation and using breathing exercises as a starting point. Training ourselves to see reality exactly as it is is called mindfulness. Real peace comes only when we stop chasing it.

This explanation of mindful breathing is greatly condensed. It is a tiny step toward attaining mindfulness. You have to start somewhere!

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