Monday, May 21, 2012

Before Atlas Shrugs

This is going to sound a stupid question, but have you ever stopped and thought about your breathing?  Not in the way one does when suffering from a cold or a chest infection, but quite simply as an unconscious process that carries on quietly and continuously in the background.

I was listening to an interesting speaker the other day and this was his initial instruction to his audience:
"Pay attention to your breathing," he said, "it's the greatest miracle there is."
So I did . . . I observed the air going in . . . I observed the air going out . . . I paid attention to the rising and falling of my chest . . . I dimly perceived the inner, regular thumping of my heart.
A miracle . . . ?
He was right.  Without that regular breath, without the air providing oxygen to my lungs and vitality to my heart, I wouldn't have been alive, I wouldn't have been able to question the statement and make the observation.
Breath facilitates life.  When breath goes . . . life goes.
And what is life?  Don't let's fool ourselves.  Giving it a name doesn't mean that we know what it is.

We marvel at the latest scientific discoveries . . . and they are incredible, who would want to deny the amazing breakthroughs that seem to occur with increasing frequency.  But does our thirst for the new, coupled with a tendency to ignore the familiar, cause us to disregard the two marvels that are constantly with us . . . the miracle of breath . . . the mystery of life?

It has been scientifically proved that, given unity of breath, unity of purpose and unity of intent, our hearts beat in unison.  When members of a choir sing together their hearts form a coherent beat.  Is it any wonder that the unifying drumbeat of a military band exerted such power when leading armies into battle?

HeartMath, an institute which undertakes scientific studies into the function of the heart, claims as its mission 'to establish heart-based living and global coherence by inspiring people to connect the intelligence and guidance of their hearts'.
I strongly recommend their website.  But perhaps what is most striking is the evidence they have provided into the power of heart coherence.

If we all breathe together, focus our hearts on love and unity . . .   could we, perhaps, heal the schisms that are currently fracturing human society on our troubled planet?

Before Atlas shrugs, and we're in danger of toppling, surely it's worth a try . . . ?