‘The Way Out Is In’ Thich Nhat Hanh
Here I am again quoting this incredible teacher again. His work is so profound, so simple and so easy. It’s all about the practice he says, we know that alright, but as we are human, we don’t always keep doing it!
However, when we find that practices work, we get encouraged to keep using them. That’s how I started to practice little techniques. Do we need proof that they work? Of course we do, that’s what being human is all about. Trying a practice and then realising yes it does work. A marvellous discovery.
I don’t think it is that we don’t believe the therapist/practitioner that something so simple as breathing really works until we start to try it and make use of it and find that everything starts to change.
This teacher talks a lot about coming home to ourselves. He’s talking here about the connection with ourselves. We cannot connect with others until we connect with ourselves. Is it that because of the age of technology we have lost the art of connection? Firstly, and most importantly we have lost the connection with ourselves, but also with others.
What do we do with the feelings that make us uncomfortable or guilty? Pretend they don’t exist, well that worked for me for a while, but not for long.
Feelings of isolation, loneliness, and sadness can be felt in a crowded room of people. His suggestion is to acknowledge the emotion, smile to it, tell the emotion that you know it is there and you will take care of it.
Wow what a way to address an uncomfortable emotion within yourself. I tell you from experience, that a real cracker!
The breathing techniques that he recommends are really simple. I use them all the time, to regulate myself and keep myself grounded and on the earth. They are really powerful and very effective.
I had been listening to that information for years and never really put it into practice. Until I started to notice pains across the middle of my body and couldn’t understand why, until a practitioner explained to me that I needed to learn how to breathe properly!! That was twenty years ago!
Holding the body in a tense posture, trying to bite your lip, saying nothing when you want to scream, recognise any of this? Well, this is how illness sets in. Holding the breath causes tension in the body.
The body goes on then to take on a tense posture, muscles get congested, the breathing is distorted, and less oxygen comes in.
We know that 90% of all illness has its origin in stress, so it is in our power to resolve it within ourselves.
Walking around the kitchen, with each step, telling yourself that you are coming home to yourself, checking in with yourself. Breathing mindfully.
Using your feet to remind you of connection, with yourself, with your breath, with home.
I will write that book someday ‘It’s All in The Breath’ because it is!
Breathe and feel free, breathe, and feel calm, breathe and come home, home to yourself.