A person can survive without food for several weeks; without water for several days; but without breath?  Less than seven minutes.  Breath is central to Hinduism, Buddhism and other eastern religions.

Jewish and Christian traditions mention breath starting in the book of Genesis 2:7 “And the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living soul.”

Breath is calming.

Sometimes I forget to breathe.  Sometimes I get so stressed out that when I tell my tale of woes each grievance builds on the previous one cultivating into a giant collection of gripes, grumbles and injustices.  A sure sign of the snowball effect is when my voice gets louder, my speech gets faster and my husband will feel the compulsion to interject, “Breathe, Lisa!”

So, I guess I will take the advice of all the major world religions (and my husband too) and try to breathe easier this week.   I read online that some people do “breath prayers” (which sounds a lot like meditation to me, but what do I know?)  These are the steps:

  1. Inhale
  2. Concentrate on a mantra or prayer, like, “Give me strength and courage”
  3. Say the first part of your prayer, “Give me,” then exhale halfway
  4. Say the rest of your prayer, “strength and courage,” then exhale fully
  5. Repeat

Whether you do yoga, Pilates, meditation or prayer, I hope you breathe easier this week too.


Lisa (c) 2012 Lisa Traugott.  All rights reserved.  No portion of this blog, including any text, photographs, and artwork, may be reproduced or copied without written permission.

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