Author Topic: breathing naturally  (Read 6897 times)

magicwords

  • Guest
breathing naturally
« on: September 16, 2008, 04:19:52 PM »
I have trouble sustaining natural breathing while at the same time being aware of it, almost like being aware or self-conciousss makes it harder to do because im paying more attention, it fells like im sucking in air into my stomach but its not going into my lungs and i usally end up burping up retained air afterawhile,

curious to find out what others do to keep there breathing naturally
thanks

frepi

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2008, 06:22:35 PM »
I think the solution lies in practice. I don't know for how long you have been meditating and I never experienced this particular difficulty (I struggle with other problems, don't worry)  but I am sure this would resolve by itself with practice. Maybe you shouldn't count your breaths. I know it is recommended but if somehow you unconsciously set yourself a goal that you fear you might not reach, this could make you more tense and make natural breathing difficult. Try just observing the sensation of the wind in your nose, don't worry about the "naturalness" of your breathing for now.

I hope this will help

magicwords

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2008, 01:08:19 AM »
thanks, ive learned to reset my breathing by focusing all my concentration on thought which seemed to helped today at work with the breathing problems.

frepi

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2008, 04:34:38 PM »
Keep us informed of your progress

Flipasso

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2008, 07:12:30 PM »
I have also trouble with breathing naturally.
I tend to control my breath whenever I'm aware of it. And when I try not to control it seems like it's not going to happen so I have to (controllingly???) breath in.

frepi

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2008, 07:56:18 PM »
Maybe forcing your breath could help you notice the difference between forced and free breathing. Take a deep inspiration, while counting 1 to 10 , hold it for a count of 1 to 10 and exhale for the same count. Repeat 5 times. Usually, after doing this, I am much more relaxed. This can then help you breathing more lightly and naturally.

Hazmatac

  • Member
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2008, 04:14:42 AM »
hey, forced breath isn't a big issue. As long as you stick with it you'll get better at it. As long as you are focused on your breath that's all that counts. Just try to relax.

sandip250382

  • Member
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2008, 01:49:56 PM »
Never add any counting to your breathing. If you find it difficult to concentrate ie to aware take some deep breathes and observes how it feels to you . I also have similar problems earlier. But everything will fine with time and practice. " Continuity is the secret to success"
Happy metta to all

pamojjam

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2008, 12:27:16 AM »
Hi to all,

I have trouble sustaining natural breathing while at the same time being aware of it, almost like being aware or self-conciousss makes it harder to do because im paying more attention,

had the same difficulty that becoming aware of breath seemed to make it slightly less natural. But wasn't so worried about this and simply was aware of this tendency whenever it occurred too.

.. I am sure this would resolve by itself with practice.

this was my experience too. Though depending on my state of mind is still happens, at times.

Never add any counting to your breathing.

Dear Sandip, there are respectable Venerables who do teach counting of breathing at an initial stage of awareness of breathing meditation.

And then there is S.N.Goenka who teaches "Never add any counting to you breathing" and supports it by claiming that Lord Buddha's meditation technique would be unique in its liberating ability (compared to other meditations) - because it wouldn't add any verbalization or visualization to it - but only would 'observe reality as it is'.

Though I personally had best effects with Goenka's method and counting the breath only gives me headache. Nevertheless, here Goenka isn't very precise - as even his teacher, Sayagyi U Ba Khin thought Anapana by adding verbalization at its beginning stage. And the prohibition to count the breath on account of an alleged uninterrupted tradition going back to the historical Buddha a mere teaching devise.

Every person is different and therefore chooses a meditation method which seem to work for him after some serious trial. Therefore I would like to suggest that only suggestions on how to meditate are given - best on account of personal experience - and different methods of vipassana taken in account and respected.

One such experience of myself is, that any meditation method is only worthwhile if you stick to it till it takes you to some of its depth, and therefore I would like to advise: don't change already again with the first difficulty arising or because someone happens to say "Never ..."

Giving advise, which might have good reasons in one Vipassana meditation method  - might be completely out of sync and inappropriate if the recipient of this advise practices an other Vipassana meditation.

Despite me disagreement, I would be very interested in your personal experience which made you disadvise counting of breathing?

kind regards...

sinkingthinking

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2010, 07:37:44 PM »
I have this problem too. My asthma is barely noticeable to me these days in everyday life but I wonder if it's related to that. I get quite breathless and uncomfortable when I'm aware of my breathing because the breathing becomes unnatural enough that it messes up my oxygen to carbon dioxide ratio (which is what happens when you hypo- or hyper-ventilate). Instead I've been using body scanning methods for samatha. I find this much more successful. I hope to become better at the breathing methods though, especially as there's a local Chan Buddhist group I might join that uses them. I think one factor is that when practising my breathing slows enough that the wait between breaths combined with being focused on breathing makes me feel that I might be holding my breath even when I'm not, so I breathe in before I need to.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2010, 07:45:33 PM by sinkingthinking »

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
  • Staff
  • Meditation: It's a D.I.Y. project.
    • KISS: Keep it simple stupid.
    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2010, 08:46:20 AM »
sinkingthinking,

I would recommend you get a 25(OH)D Vitamin D blood test done. If your levels are too low then supplement with gelcap D3 in olive oil. Try to get blood levels to 70-90ng/ml. For most Asthmatics normalising D3 levels in this way reduces the need for steroidal inhalers such as Ventolin either completely or very significantly.

Ninety per cent of westerners are clinically short of Vitamin D3 due to modern living conditions.

Also the Buddha did not teach to focus on anything except the total experience of breathing, "breath in aware of the breath, breath out aware of the breath, breath in relaxing the body, breath out relaxing the body". If you are focussing on a particular area to force concentrated mind I believe this to be an obstacle on the path, a form of fabrication - as is counting the breath. If one is breathing in aware and relaxing the body without forcing attention anywhere in particular then it is less likely that unnatural breathing patterns will emerge.

Do check out your D3 blood levels if you can or just buy a supplement and start taking some (2,000 - 5,000 UI/day) and see if you notice changes. Depending on how depleted your system may be change will come in 2 - 4 weeks. It all depends how much natural full body sun exposure you get on a regular basis as to the need to supplement. Winter months I take 5,000 UI/day.

Warmly, in the Dhamma,

Matthew
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

Crystal Palace

  • Member
  • "Move on Bhikkus, Move On" - Buddha
    • Thai Forest Tradition
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #11 on: February 07, 2010, 07:01:01 AM »
Pamojjam,

The thing with counting, as S.N. Goenka says and which I can validate with my own personal experience,is that after a while the awareness shifts from the incoming and outgoing breath to the counting.

So for instance, you start Anapana and are supposed to be experiencing the breath coming in and going out naturally, but invariably what happens is that soon you find yourself mechanically saying, "36,37,38,39" 

And although I have no authority to speak about other schools of vipassana, I believe one should not start with any counting, visualising, verbalizing or any other fabricated form of Anapana, even if done with the intention of letting it go after the beginner's stage because why sart off the journey on the wrong foot at all?

Awareness of the breath coming in naturally and going out naturally may take longer to achieve calm, nonetheless it is better than to artificially calm down the mind.
"Abstain from unwholesome actions,
Perform wholesome actions,
Purify your mind"

Buddha

Slider

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2010, 11:10:43 AM »
TIB, I find you writing about the importance of vitamin D many times. Could you suggest me some good supplements? Also, should I consult a doctor before taking such supplements or simply go and buy them from the chemist, as I too suffer from bronchial asthma, which raises the same problems of unnatural breathing while I'm meditating (no matter how hard I try of being aware of the moment). I am on a homoeopathic medication presently and things seem to be improving (for instance, I have reduced my dependence on inhalers considerably) but I would also like to try out what you recommend.

Also, is consuming alcohol (a very tiny percentage of a few pills) present in homoeopathic medicines a breach of sila?

Crystal Palace

  • Member
  • "Move on Bhikkus, Move On" - Buddha
    • Thai Forest Tradition
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2010, 06:05:26 PM »
Dear Slider,

Before taking Vitamin D supplements, please get a blood test done to know exactly what levels of Vitamin D are present in your blood. Vitamin D deficiency generally occurs in countries where there is inadequeate sunshine. I would like to think that in a place like Delhi, where it is crazily hot, you get more than your required dose of Vitamin D.

As far as the small amount of alcohol in the homeopathic medicine is concerned, its pretty much inconsequential given the stage we are all on on the path. That is, the effects would be too subtle to even come to your notice.

Warmly,
In the Dhamma,
Crystal Palace
"Abstain from unwholesome actions,
Perform wholesome actions,
Purify your mind"

Buddha

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
  • Staff
  • Meditation: It's a D.I.Y. project.
    • KISS: Keep it simple stupid.
    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #14 on: June 27, 2010, 09:12:23 AM »
Dear Slider,

Before taking Vitamin D supplements, please get a blood test done to know exactly what levels of Vitamin D are present in your blood. Vitamin D deficiency generally occurs in countries where there is inadequeate sunshine. I would like to think that in a place like Delhi, where it is crazily hot, you get more than your required dose of Vitamin D. .....

This is not the best advice - actually many Indians are deficient in Vitamin D through avoiding sun exposure to maintain pale complexion.

When it comes to any country in the "western world" you are >60% likely to be deficient if you are Caucasian and >90% if of pigmented skin.

Even if you get the blood test you must ignore what any doctor tells you about it. They will say that >30ng/ml (75nmol/L) is fine. It is not. The target range for good health is around 60 - 70ng/ml or 150 - 175 nmol/L.

Get the blood test by all means - it will probably show you are deficient unless taken at the height of summer or unless you are living in a village near the equator subsistence farming - in which case I would like to know where you get your internet connection from.

M
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

Crystal Palace

  • Member
  • "Move on Bhikkus, Move On" - Buddha
    • Thai Forest Tradition
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #15 on: June 27, 2010, 09:47:22 AM »
Matthew,

Living in India, the sun is almost unavoidable. And you have to be around in Delhi at this time of the year to understand how tremendously hot it is. The sun's rays are piercing here.

But my main point was to not take any medical supplements unless there is a requirement - for which in this case a blood test is suggested.

Warmly,
Crystal Palace
"Abstain from unwholesome actions,
Perform wholesome actions,
Purify your mind"

Buddha

Slider

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2010, 03:04:23 PM »
While I'm getting my blood test done, I suggest you do the same Mr. Crystal. From what I know, you and I live in closed air conditioned apartment buildings and barely expose ourselves to the sun. You are mistaking 'heat' for the sun.

I remember reading recently a newspaper article which talked about Vitamin D deficiencies in humans -particularly south Asians. According to the doctor (who wrote the article), a human must expose himself to the sun for at least half an hour everyday to maintain healthy levels of Vit. D in his body. As TIB has stated that Vit D levels which are presently considered by doctors to be 'healthy' are not necessarily sufficient, we might have to sit under the sun for about 2-3 hours daily to achieve his (TIB's) recommended levels. And considering time shortages that you and I have, we might want to consider taking supplements.

alphawavedave

  • Guest
Re: breathing naturally
« Reply #17 on: July 08, 2010, 04:01:01 PM »
All things come and go. Attachements of various kinds dissolve when they are are allowed to be as they are.

 

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