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Have you ever heard of breathwork? It’s a meditative practice less known than others like visualizing or repeating a mantra. It consists of laying down for about 30 to 50 minutes or even more, only breathing through your mouth in a connected and conscious way. These sessions are sometimes accompanied by specific music songs that help you build a consistent rhythm.
The descriptions that will follow are mainly about my personal journey with breathwork. Every person has different experiences with this powerful tool.
Breathwork helps to calm the mind
After breathing in a connected and conscious way for a few minutes you start feeling some changes in your body, your mouth feels dryer, sometimes you can feel dizzy and you can even get some cramps in your hands—a sensation known as tetany. So you are probably wondering why would anyone to do this, and even more, carry out this exercise as a regular practice?
To some people, meditation comes very easily. Have you ever met one of these people? Me neither. Probably if you visit Asian countries this statement would be completely normal, but in the occidental world, it’s almost unthinkable to be able to calm your mind and let the thoughts go away.
Well, in my experience breath-work is, from all the meditative practices I tried, the one that generates the most powerful and rewarding sensation, even from the first time you do it. That’s why I’m sure it has incredible potential to be the practice that most people will incorporate into their lives in the coming years.
Using breathwork to access an expanded consciousness
The sensations you achieve during this practice can be described as access to an expanded consciousness. You can experience feelings of deep love toward yourself and others. Suddenly the things that you were so worried about seem to not be so important. You start wanting to become a better person, willing to help others, and you achieve an understanding of how complete you are.
I love how this practice works every time for me. Maybe I had a hard day; maybe I’m in a bad mood having a lot of thoughts and worries repeating over and over in my head. Then I decide to do the breathing practice. I have a vague memory that it was so good for me before, yet somehow I’ve forgotten exactly how it felt last time. This time I believe it might not be so useful because of how I’m feeling.
Thoughts are there with me all the time but no matter what I begin to breathe at this specific rhythm. I keep breathing, inhaling, and exhaling following the music because I’m committed to the practice. And suddenly after breathing for a while, something magical happens. It’s almost impossible to describe with words. Everything seems to be different and it’s because you are seeing things from a different perspective. An exceptional moment of tranquility and peace emerges. My mind is still there, but now I’m sensing everything in a different way. I can feel the blanket softly touching my skin, I feel pressure in some parts of my body, I believe that it is energy, I can’t see it but I feel it. In my mind it seems like I remember what’s really important, I have a deep feeling of contentment and fulfillment.
I could explain this process as if we lose ourselves a bit in the everyday routine and worries. In the fast world where many things are happening all the time, we forget about the truth of our perfect beings and why we are here. But then breathwork helps us to come back helps us remember what we already know deep down inside of us.
What a breathwork session is really like
What I originally thought would be a long 50-minute practice is suddenly over. Many times when I´m experiencing these unique sensations, I don’t want to come back. I just want to float in the ethereal and infinite space. It’s a splendid state. And what’s more amazing is that suddenly you realize your mind actually stopped, and it didn’t require much effort; it just happened after some connected breathing.
I wish I could be that aware all the time, but for the moment I know I have my breathing to go back there any time I want.
After the sessions I did in groups, without exception all the participants were surprised and extremely thankful. People couldn’t believe the strong impact this easy exercise generated on their level of consciousness.
The meaning of meditation
I saw a video of a Buddhist nun called Yife were she explained the meaning of meditation. She said that meditation helps us see things as they really are. And she described: imagine you are a lake and when you meditate your waters calm down and all the dust decants. Then the water becomes still, clean and peaceful, like a mirror and only then it reflects things as they really are.
I like this statement because I’ve felt that sensation of discovering the truth inside of me during meditations. Not listening to anything else than my inner knowledge. I believe this is something we should seek every day.
There are some organizations that offer breathing sessions for free online if you would like to try. I believe everything we do to become our best version is worth trying.