Place your attention

July 13, 2017Breath

 

place

Seek out a space where you can lie down without being disturbed.  
Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet on the ground.  Rest your palms lightly over the centre of your chest.
This feels lovely.
Settle ...
Let yourself be cradled by the earth beneath you.

Now, gently guide your attention to the centre of your chest. Your heart space. 
Let your attention be light. Try not to grasp.
Notice your breath at your heart space.

Breathe ...

Look at your breath, listen to your breath, feel your breath.
If your attention drifts, gently, kindly, bring it back to your heart space.

Heart space, breath at heart space. Heart space, breath at heart space. Heart space, breath at heart space...

 

Silent as a flower, beautiful, modest as a flower, with that indescribable movement of opening from the centre, revealing all the beauty enclosed within. - Sandra Sabatini

prāṇāyāma defined

July 3, 2017Breath

 

what is prāṇāyāma?

prāṇāyāma (regulation and mastery of the breath) is defined in the Yoga Sūtra of Patañjali, as interrupting the natural movement or flow of the breath by becoming deeply aware of it.

Each day set aside some time to breathe with awareness.

Sit comfortably with your spine tall, this may take a little effort to begin with.

Gradually align your attention with your breath. No rush. Begin to follow each exhalation and each inhalation with your attention.  Notice the quality of the breath.  Is it long and smooth?  Perhaps it's shallow, difficult or irregular. Keep watching your breath.  In time become aware of the natural spaces between the exhalations and inhalations.  

As you cultivate a flow of resonance with your breath, without force, begin to increase the length of your exhalations, let them last a little longer than your inhalations. Continue this practice for a little while.  When you're ready, notice how you feel.

You may wish to move or stretch.  Do this again tomorrow.

breathing

June 29, 2017Breath

 

b r e a t h

Breathing is the essence of yoga. The breath has four phases or aspects.

exhalation
space 
inhalation
space

Try this. Lie on your back, bend your knees, bring the soles of your feet to the ground.  Have your feet comfortably close to your buttocks and about hip width apart. Bring the arms a little away from the sides of the body, open the palms toward the sky. Gently draw the chin towards the throat so the back of the neck feels spacious and long.

S e t t l e. Let yourself be cradled by the earth beneath you. S u r r e n d e r.

N O W begin to follow the natural flow of your breath with your attention.  Notice each e x h a l a t i o n, notice the s p a c e after the exhalation and before the inhalation. Notice each i n h a l a t i o n and the s p a c e after each inhalation.  Continue to watch each aspect of the breath for a little while. When you're ready take a stretch if you wish.  Sit up.  Observe how you feel.