From the moment we are born till the moment we die we all breathe. In most people, if there is no breathing, it means the person is dead. There are some exceptions, like yogis who have achieved the breathless state. But, at this moment we are not talking about such things.
We breathe in. We breathe out. This happens constantly.
When we breathe in, the in-coming air moves in through the nostrils.
When we breathe out, the out-coming air moves out through the nostrils.
As this breathing happens, the air touches somewhere in or near the nostrils.
If we put our awareness near the nostrils( being aware of the place near the nostrils) and focus on the touch sensation, we can sense that the air touches somewhere near the nostrils.
Become aware of the touch sensation somewhere near the nostrils as you breathe in and out. Do not do anything else. Just become aware of the touch.
Your mind will wander. That is natural. That does not mean you are doing something wrong. That just means that your awareness is not deep enough.
Once you become aware of the wandering, bring the awareness back to the touch sensation of the air near the nostrils.
You cannot know the touch of air before it actually occurs. After it has gone, you cannot know it any more.Only while the air moves in or out can you feel the sensation of touch. This we call the present moment.
When our awareness is thus established constantly being aware of the touch sensation of the air moving into and out of the nostrils , we are living in the present moment.
This is a simple method of becoming mindful. This is what we can call as awareness meditation. Do this for as long as you can every day( 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 1 hour, any amount of time)
This will bring peace, joy and calm to our lives.
– inspired by The Way To Ultimate Calm by Webu Sayadaw.