The 9 Breaths: Breath 4

When does your breath stop automatically?

When there is danger or great fear, whether in your dreams or in so-called reality.

It is important to remember that breathing and mind work together. Your mind stops in synchrony with your breath in such situations, therefore this is a golden opportunity to look behind the screen of so-called reality.

If you want to start at the beginning, please go to:


Breath 1

Breath 2

Breath 3

Important Points from Breath 3:

* Children breathe deeply exclusively in their abdomen – this is the secret of their totality, their joy and energy. They are existing in or close to their true centre.

*When the breath is static or turns from down (in) to up (out), we are here-and-now in our totality.

*Breath is the bridge to our real centre, to reality, to full awareness.

*The more your breath touches your centre, the more your life force will fuse with the energy of the cosmos, your divine origins.

*When we are in the shadows of negativity, we are divided. We can only live partially if we breathe shallowly, and the upper body is divided from the lower, the angel from the animal.



Breath stops when there is danger. In tandem with the breath, in such situations the mind also ceases to move in its monkey fashion. Danger galvanizes us and forces us to realize that the small self is simply a daily utility and it can vanish easily.

This is a tremendous resource to get a glimpse of our True Nature.



Business Man Risk on Tightrope_Blue to White Background


This is why it is important to take risks in your life.

We tend to over-cherish ourselves, over-protect ourselves with our ego shield. This is a function of living in large urban populations unfortunately.





Breathing is not something we can practice. Each one is a live performance. But by approaching breathing in different ways, we can feel something different with each performance.




Shiva’s 4th breath has become the basis of Zen teachings in Japan. Ferocious Masters behave in unexpected ways with their pupils to shock them into feeling the breath stop, and so to grasp the power the small self can hold over us. Shiva, the utterly unpredictable, was an expert at living in this way.




Shiva says: For the pure, the pause when the breath and the mind stop is commonplace, is ever-present.


NO desiring. NO seeking. NO looking elsewhere. NO divisions.


This is when the mind stops and the bridge of the breath opens up to us. We can easily walk smoothly across it to bask in the vast field of human awareness. We are free to take up our rightful place in the Universe.

Inspiration: Impurity is completely within your control by using the sharp sword of mindfulness. Watch, witness, each of your thoughts as they arise – if they are negative or critical, envious or fearful, just turn away from them. They emanate from the small scared self not your True Self; from the victim of life not the victor. All speech and actions originate in thoughts, but thoughts are never in the present – they are always in the past or the future, both of them man-made concepts not to be confused with reality!!



      Wonderful images courtesy of Linden Thorp, Mariko Kinoshita and

                                 Join me tomorrow for Breath 5 of the 9 breath series.

The 9 Breaths: Breath 3

Do you know where the centre of your body is? If you send energy via the breath to your centre, then you will live fully, you will realize 100% of your potential, you will arrive in a state of total happiness and love.

Read on to find the answer and some simple techniques.

To fill you in on previous posts of the series see:


Breath 1

Breath 2

Main points from Breath 1 + 2

* Breath moves in a perfect circle. 1 breath = 2 halves of the circle. The down (in) breath and the up (out) breath, and there is a gap between each half.

* The gap is a turn in the direction of the breath and at this point you are neither body, nor mind, nor mechanism. You pass through neutral gear to reach other gears-neutral is your True Nature, the pure energy of the Universe.

*Breath and Mind work together. If your breath stops then your mind stops.

*You can allow complete freedom of your awareness and so realize 100% of your potential as a human. Only the minimum of control is needed to live in the social world.

* Your body is divided into 2 parts: the periphery (we know quite well because we are always looking out into the world); and the core or centre (we do not know at all perhaps).



If you observe children breathing, and we were all once children, you will see that they breathe almost exclusively deeply in their abdomens. Then gradually, through conditioning and control, as they get older, the breath rises into the chest and become increasingly shallower. This is one of the reasons there are so many respiratory dis-eases in today’s modern world.




The down (in) breath and the up (out) breath are fundamentally dynamic, and the intellectual mind works with them, but between the breaths, when the breath is static, we are here-and-now in our totality. This is the exuberance and bliss of children which we steadily lose as we mature and move up into our heads.



The down (in) breath naturally moves towards our centre, to our navel, and then moves away. This is the bridge. But if the breath is too shallow it will not reach the centre, so many of us feel ‘off=centre’ in busy modern life. We breathe only partially in the city and that means we live only partially.



If we go out into the mountains or to the beach, suddenly we feel alive, pulsing with life. In such an environment, the breath will deepen and touch the centre, and so we feel briefly wonderful. In time, the worries and fears return and we move back into partial mode.

If your breath touches your centre, then your life force will fuse with the energy of the cosmos.




Shiva says: ‘Whenever the down (in) breath and the up (out) breath fuse, at this instant touch the energy-less and the energy-filled centre.’

By ‘energy-less,’ he means only the energy we get from food and liquid, which we utilize with shallow breathing; and by ‘energy-filled’ he means the energy of the cosmos we are connected to access by abdominal breathing.

If we can bring cosmic energy to our centre, to our navel, and fuse it with worldly energy, then we find our totality, our truth, our complete happiness.

Inspiration: If we live fearfully in the shadows of negativity, then we are divided. We have chosen to live partially and so we breathe shallowly to keep in control. We keep the breath at a minimum, in the head. As a result, our upper body is divided from our lower and we become the victims not the victors of civilization’s move.





images courtesy of Linden Thorp and



     Join me tomorrow for breath 4 of this 9 breath series.

The 9 Breaths: Breath 2

Main points from Introduction:; and Breath 1:

* Shiva is the Indian God of ‘transformation.’ His techniques were inspiration for the Buddha’s enlightenment, and they can be for you too.

*Tantra = unconscious transformation. No so not need to do any changing. be exactly as you are.

* Your breath is the bridge between your body and the universe. ‘You’ are not required to breathe – it happens in spite of you – so simply watch it as if you are watching the breath of someone else.

*Noticing the gap between the down (in) breath and the up (out) breath will open the doors to the ‘Kingdom of the Spirit.’



In Breath 1, you noticed by watching that your breath moves in a perfect circle and the down (in) and up (out) breaths are two halves of one complete breath.

You also noticed by watching and staying exactly with the movement of the breath, neither ahead or behind it, that within that circular movement there is a ‘gap’ or ‘turn’ from down to up at the bottom of the breath, and from up to down at the top of the breath.

In Breath 2, we will watch this ‘turn’ more closely.





The Earth’s breath becomes part of the body when it is entering you and leaving you, but when it turns from down to up and up to down then it is no-body, no-mind.

A good analogy for this turning is a car, motorbike or electric bicycle. A motor-driven vehicle has gears, low and high, hill-climbing-hill-descending, etc. The turning point of your breath is like neutral on your gear stick. Neutral has to be passed through to reach all the gears.



The human mechanism is extraordinary, cutting edge, miraculous, at its peak. It is composed of many gears: sleep gear, anger gear, smiling gear, laughing gear, etc.

As you change into a new gear, your transmission must pass through neutral. Perhaps the best example is sleeping. As you prepare to sleep, there is a gap between waking and falling into sleep. There is a turning point which you can never catch – you are awake and then suddenly you are asleep and watching your dreams!

In this gap, you are neither body, nor mind, nor mechanism. You are pure energy or existence – the energy of the Universe.




As you experiment with this type of awareness of your breathing, you will notice that moving breath is connected to mind, and if your breath stops for some reason, then your mind stops.

Our breathing is conditioned to be plugged into the electric current of mind, so breathing and thinking have become connected. But if you unplug from that habitual connection, then the thinking ‘monkey’ mind stops.



Shiva says:

As breath turns from down to up, and again as breath curves from up to down – through both these turns, realize!




You can take complete control of your car with these moments of awareness! You can take control of your 70 million cells, your 70 million connectors to the universe. You can realize 100% of your potential in this way!

You have opened the door to the Kingdom of Spirit if only a crack, for a split second!


Inspiration: Please let this notion swim around you during the day ahead to prepare you for Breath 3 tomorrow.

Your body is divided into two: the periphery which we know well because we are always looking outside through our physical eyes; and the centre or core which we do not know well. To touch our core we need to close our physical eyes and open our spiritual eyes inside.



Images courtesy of and Linden Thorp