Every day we experience the balance of inner and outer in the simple act of breathing. Too much exhale and we start to fade. Too much inhale and we can’t hold it. And we quickly know when our breath is out of balance. Hyperventilating. Holding our breath. Shallow breathing. Exasperated exhales. Sudden frightened inhales. The breath gives away a lot about what’s going on in us at any given moment. And notice that every meditative tradition and every body-based practice from yoga to martial arts invite us to be aware of our breath and allow it to serve us well. Belly breathing helps reduce anxiety.  Panting is a classic childbirth strategy. Deep breathing slows us down. Conscious breathing quiets the mind.   …

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Dorothy Firman ©2016

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