March 2003 (Vol. XVI, No 3)

EVERY BLESSING, dear friends! Breath is out of the Spirit ... breath is lie. May we all pause in the Silence during the day, if awake at night, to breathe in PEACE ... to breahte out PEACE to every nation on earth.

The breathing in and out of the earth's atmosphere by the body

The breathing in and out of the earth's atmosphere by the body is a symbol of the eternal rhythm of the Self-I and Thou, in and out, up and down, forward and back, systole and diastole in their final unity. The conscious realization and incarnation of this rhythm, balance, unity, in the unique, individual pattern of one's life would lead — so I feel — to the breathing out of one's last breath into death into that air of eternity, which is the breath of life when the body is left behind.

Follow the breath back to God

Breath and attention to breath are keys to self-emptying. Attending to the breath will carry you beyond the distractions of the mind and return you to the Greater Unity of God from which you arise and in which you dwell. Just as God breathed life into Creation, so God breathes into each one of us at this and every moment. Follow the breath back to God.

~ from OPEN SECRETS by R. M. Shapiro

Breathing out resentment, breathing in joy

I finished my morning quiet time with an exercise of breathing out resentment, breathing in joy; breathing out anxiety, breathing in peace; breathing out hate, breathing in love, breathing out want, breathing in thanksgiving; breathing out fear, breathing in trust. Then I am ready to start my day.

~ from A SACRED PRIMER by Elizabeth Harper Neeld

The two most important events in our life

By meditating on the breath and the power within and behind the breath, we realize in the deepest levels of our being that our life is sustained by God. We do not breathe by our own will; God is sustaining our life and everything else in creation... We are born into this world and we will die and live this world. Our first breath and our last breath, the two most important events in our life, are not in our conscious control. Because our breathing is automatic and involuntary, it is easy to forget about the gift of breath — gift of God.

~ by Melinda Ribner

Slow, deep, natural breathing

Slow, deep, natural breathing is a fundamental aspect of meditation practice. In a childlike awareness of each breath, breathing out we are quietly aware of breathing out. Breathing in we are quietly aware of breathing in. In this way, our awareness becomes one with the primitive rhythms of our breathing, one with the simply given nature of now's ceaseless flow in which our life is rooted.
~ from THE CONTEMPLATIVE HEART by James Findley

Love is an out-breathing and an in-breathing

To love means to give. When you love you seem to go outwards, flow out in order to help, to serve. But as you cannot breathe out without breathing in, so you cannot love without receiving. Love is an out-breathing and an in-breathing. It is a light that burns deep within: as warmth, a certainty, an inner knowing.

How I pray is breathe

What I wear is pants.
What I do is live.
How I pray is breathe...
Up here in the woods is seen the Word.
That is to say, the wind comes through
the trees and you breathe it.

~ from DAY OF A STRANGER by Thomas Merton

Slipping into cracks of silence

I long to slip into cracks of silence
where breath is connected to spirit and
spirit to wind and a sense of oneness
resonates in my core.

~ by Karyn D. Dedar

Breath deeply amidst the beauties of nature

Breath deeply amidst the beauties of nature;
absorb vibrations unsullied by
pollution and cosmopolitan ways.
Breathing mindfully brings balance into your life;
strength is gained through the Breath of Life!
Remember: breath is your life's companion!
And, as you limit your breath, you limit life itself.
Befriend silence: a balm to your soul.
As you breathe in silence,
your ear attunes to Spirit.
You will understand the eagle.
Breathe deeply! Breathe life!

~ from LUMEN CHRISTI...HOLY WISDOM by Nan Merrill

A living weather vane responding minute-by-minute to the breath of the Spirit

Those who assent to higher laws enter a new sphere of life marked by utter unpredictability, a way of being in which one becomes, if and when one remains alerts, a living weather vane responding minute-by-minute to the breath of the Spirit. . . As soon as we turn, even for a moment, to a deeper understanding of what life demands, of what is asked of us as beings born of earth and heaven, as long as we move, if only for a moment, from the realms of self-calming, self-feeding, and self-adoring into the realm of sacrifice and work for love of God and neighbor, we immediately enter, in potentia, the field of holy folly. Whether this potential is actualized is a decision not ours to make ("not my will, by Thy will be done"). Our job is to listen to the call: that is enough.

~ from "Holy Folly" by Philip Zaleski in Parabola Fall 2001

As we breathe out what trees breathe in

As we breathe out what trees breathe in,
And the trees breathe out what we breathe in,
So we breathe each other into life, We and You.

~ by Marcia Prager

To pray is to breathe in God's life-giving spirit

Dolphins can live in the deepest water without danger because they regularly come to the surface and breathe in air that sustains them. We, too, must rise in prayer into the spiritual realm. To pray is to breathe in God's life-giving spirit that gives life and peace, even in this world.

~ by Sundar Singh

Breathing mindfully

Breathing mindfully helps you to enter deep, inner silence ...
~ by Nan Merrill

Becoming conscious of God's subtle Presence through our own breathing

I experience the Divine Presence in many ways, but the form most often available to me is "spiration," or the act of breathing in which the Spirit often manifests itself and communicates itself. This process has given rise to the experience of inspiration, or in-spiration, in which the Spirit breathes into us. To be aware of God through spiration is to become conscious of God's subtle Presence through our own breathing.

We all share in the eternal spiration of the Spirit. When I am sufficiently absorbed in the experience of divine spiration, I realize inwardly my dependence, and that of all beings, on this subtle action of the Source.

~ from A MONK IN THE WORLD by Wayne Teasdale