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The Llewellyn Journal
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Three Relaxing Breaths: A Taoist Meditation Technique

This article was written by Andy Baggott
posted under Self-Help

Here is a simple Taoist meditation technique that, with practice, will enable you to find balance and the power to deal with any kind of situation. It only takes about thirty seconds to do and you can apply it anytime, anywhere— even while driving. Nothing feels better than when you are in the zone. You feel calm and in control, alert, and ready to deal with any situation. In Taoist meditation, the two primary guidelines are jing (quiet, stillness, calm) and ding (concentration, focus). These are the same two characteristics required for being in the zone.

There are two versions of this exercise: the first for normal situations and the second for exceptional situations.

Three Relaxing Breaths—Version One
You can use this technique to help you through any kind of change in your life. It is especially useful just before a required change of mood, such as prior to public speaking or before mediation.

  1. Sit or stand with your mouth closed and your tongue gently resting on your upper palate.

  2. Take a slow, deep breath in through your nose. Breathe right down into your abdomen, feeling it expand so that your lungs fill completely. As you breathe in, imagine your mind becoming alert and clear.

  3. Hold the breath for a moment.

  4. Exhale slowly through your nose. As you exhale, imagine any stress flowing easily out of your body.

  5. Hold your lungs empty for a moment.

  6. Repeat steps 2 through 5 twice.

  7. Say to yourself, "I am calm and alert."
Three Relaxing Breaths—Version Two
Use this technique whenever you experience any kind of shock or emotional upset.
  1. Sit or stand with your mouth closed and your tongue gently resting on your upper palate.

  2. Take a slow, deep breath in through your nose.

  3. Hold the breath for a moment.

  4. Blow out slowly through your mouth. As you exhale, imagine all feelings of unease flowing easily out of your body.

  5. Hold your lungs empty for a moment.

  6. Repeat steps 2 through 5 twice.

  7. Say to yourself, "I am calm and alert."
These techniques are effective because when people become stressed, they tend to restrict their breathing. This starves the brain of vital oxygen, which in turn, clouds their thinking. Just three relaxing breaths will clear your mind, help you access your inner wisdom and show you the best path to take.

From Blissology, by Andy Baggott


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