Saturday, January 7, 2017

30. Breathing

"He can be well loved, but he cannot be thought."
-Anonymous author of The Cloud of Unknowing

The word “spirit” in both Hebrew and Greek is related to the word for “wind” or “breath.”  Just as wind can gently blow over us or tear up roots, so the Spirit can be nudging or powerfully disruptive to our lives.  One of the ancient texts says that when life comes into humans, it is the “spirit” or “breath” that enters our body.  To be a human of air, of hidden substance, is to be spiritual.

We can take time to be attentive to the most basic of gifts we have from the Spirit: our breath.  Breathe deeply in.  Take your time.  Then breathe out.  Consider with every breath that it is the Divine entering into the deepest place in our body, living there, giving us this life, and then exiting.  We live this every moment—in fact, our moments are measured by breaths—but we rarely give this daily ritual our attention.

Take a few moments.  Daily, even, just considering your breath.  Pulling the divine within you and then allowing it to be released.

During this time thoughts, concerns, issues will arise in your mind.  When I experience these, I imagine each uncontrollable thought as a page in a large, ancient book in front of me.  I turn the page, and the next sheet is blank.  And I return to focus on my breathing.

On the center of my life. 

When we find ourselves heading out of control, when our lives are chaotic and disturbing, we can take a moment, close our eyes and breathe.  Turn the page on our concerns for a moment.  Obtain life from the Spirit.

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