Many times when an instruction to observe the breath is given while starting meditation a session we get confused about how we should breathe.
Should we inhale through the nose and exhale through the mouth(like yoga and pranayama), the breath should be shallow or deep and many more questions arise in our mind. That’s very natural
How you should breathe while meditating?
The simple answer to this is you should breathe naturally or let the breath flow naturally and be the observer.
We are using the breath as an object of meditation to control over our mind let the breath flow and keep on observing inflow and outflow of breath.
But sometimes a few questions arise
Why breath should be the object of mediation?
This is a good question when there are infinite objects you can observe and control your mind and make it calm why do we need to focus on the breath.
Breath is completely connected to our body till we die and it can be controlled voluntarily as well as works naturally.
Using breath as an object of meditation helps in getting the right kind of awareness without the use of an external object and you can easily note changes in breath anytime an emotion of a though arises.
By using breath you are not changing the reality or trying to calm yourself by any external medium temporarily.
But instead, you are getting control over your mind and this way as you progress you will be able to get yourself in the present moment whenever you want.
Also whenever strong emotion(anger, lust etc) arises you will be able to notice a change in your breath immediately.
This helps you to remain more mindful and grounded in the present moment.
How do you know if the breath is natural and you are not breathing intentionally?
What is natural breathing?
The way breathing is happening right now when you are reading this. That’s simply natural breathing.
You may sometimes feel that you are controlling your breath.
That’s because we always tend to have control over things and try to do something and not doing anything but just observing may feel a little uncomfortable in the beginning.
But simply focus your attention on the area able the upper lip and below the nostril and let breathing happen automatically.
Why we should focus on the natural breath while meditating?
When you can increase or decrease the frequency of your breathing why should you focus on the natural breath?
What’s the harm in getting a focused mind by changing the frequency of breath?
If we change the frequency of the breath we miss the initial purpose of observing reality as it is which will lead us to be in the present moment always and anytime naturally.
Instead of having to change the frequency of breath.
By observing the natural breath we are changing the habit pattern of our mind and training it to be in the present moment.
This will help our mind to get to the present moment in our day to day life and improve our overall awareness.
We are often told to be more mindful but what does it mean? Being mindful simply means being aware of whatever is happening both inside you and outside.
For example if you are feeling a strong sensation, emotion or a though which induces fear just see that as it is and accepts is as the reality of this moment.
Similarly, be mindful of breath our subconscious mind handles the breathing process automatically we just need to be aware of inflow and outflow without any judgment accepting the reality of breath as it is.
Also during the process thoughts may start arising be aware of them and accept that your mind has wandered so bring it back to the natural flow of your breath without any pressure.
Mindful breathing is very powerful and will help you get complete control over your mind also improve your concentration.
There are many more physical and emotion benefits of mindful breathing
Benefits of Mindful Breathing
- Reduces stress levels and helps in relaxing your body
- Helps you to stay in the present moment
- Reduces Depressions and thoughts that lead to depression
- Increases your endurance towards pain
- Lowers your blood pressure
and many more..
It’s very simple to understand how to observe the natural flow of breath and the concept of mindful breathing. But if you really want to get benefits from it only way is to practice it daily.
The more you practice the easier and intuitive it becomes for you. Be happy! Be peaceful!