"As I Breathe In, I am Here"
(In Our Practice, Spring 1999)
By Cheri Huber
When you are present, here, in this moment, awareness and attention settled into the breath, the breath nurturing and nourishing the body and the mind, the heart open, expansive, accepting you know that this is who you are. This is your true self, your essential nature. This conscious, compassionate awareness feels right, feels true, feels "so," feels good, there is a sense of well-being, peace, comfort. Here we wish to stay.
As we sit in meditation, we find this place of comfort and well-being. We recognize it as what it isthe absence of any illusion of separation. Just here. No boundaries. No inside and out. No here and there. This without a that. A place we can only point toward with words because no words can describe it. All words are this place, but we become confused when we think words mean something else. But that is an aside.
As we sit, we breathe. Allow the breathing to be comfortable, letting the breath comfort the body. As the body is comforted, the mind is stilled, the whole being is soothed. Easy, relaxed. Breathing in, breathing out. Not pushing. Not straining or trying. This is who you truly arelife livingthis does not require stress or tension.
In this state of relaxed comfort we are in a position to simply notice. How can we notice if there is no one there to notice, conditioning may ask. All that has been described is a relaxed, comfortable mind and body. Who will be doing the noticing? We forget, because it serves conditioning for us to forget, that life is intelligent. Intelligence does not exist because of an ego. Ego is able to be deluded about its intelligence because intelligence is. Life is intelligentlife is intelligence. It is not necessary for us to do anythingintelligence is. As we stop doing, stop controlling and attempting to make awareness happen, as we simply relax into a comfortable mind and body breathing, we participate in intelligence. We are aware. We "see." We understand. We have insight. Clarity is.
The urge to do is almost overwhelmingly compelling. I, at the very least, need to remember this! The world of samsara, the world of suffering arises. The doors to hell open wide. Gone is the peaceful, calm, clear intelligence of non-existence. I am a separate self who must be in relationship to everything. I must know, see, protect, succeed, survive.
As I breathe in I am here. As I breathe out I am here. No I. No words. No here. Breathing. Breathing breathing breathing.
Allow your breath to be a doorway, a portal between the inside and the outside. Being with the breath, the internal world with all its memories, traumas, fears, hopes, dreams, and plans is unfed. As with a fire that goes out without fuel, the world of karma burns itself away when given no attention. Keep your attention for here, the present, for life, for the compassionate goodness that is your original nature. Being with the breath, the external world with all its successes, promises of power, wealth, fame, importance, being special, is unnourished. Once again, the world of karma must feed on itself and begins to wither away.
Sitting still, breathing comfortably we find a balancenot clinging, not resisting. A balance that allows all to be exactly as is. Harmonious, complete, nothing excluded. Gassho.