How To Follow Your Breath?

Being aware of your breath is an essential skill in practising mindfulness meditation. But for many, it may be difficult to really understand this.

Let us try to make this simple:

When you want to be aware of your breath, you have to follow your breath as you inhale and exhale. The way to do this is this:

  1. Say to yourself: Be gentle. Just be aware of your breath.
  2. Imagine yourself as a guard standing at the city gates watching people go in and go out of the city. He does not do anything; he only watches people go in and go in with quiet attention.
  3. Think of your attention as a guard. Just watch your breath go in and go out. If your mind wanders, then as soon as you become aware that your mind has wandered, start watching again. Do not judge or criticise yourself that you did not watch properly. Be gentle with yourself and start the watching again.

You can also use another analogy:

  • Say to yourself: Be gentle. Just be aware of your breath.
  • Imagine yourself as butterfly resting on a flower petal and the wind is blowing.
  • Think of your attention as the butterfly. The movement of the petal with the wind up and down in your inhalation and exhalation. Just watch the breath go up and down like the movement of the petal with the wind.If your mind wanders, then as soon as you become aware that your mind has wandered, start watching again. Do not judge or criticise yourself that you did not watch properly. Be gentle with yourself and start the watching again.

As you keep doing this, the mind becomes calm and filled with joy. How beautiful!

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