Ungripping Life’s Breath

Snow Leopard Collage 6

I walk lighter, stumble less, with more spring in leg and lung, keeping my center of gravity deep in the belly, and letting that center ‘see.’ At these times, I am free of vertigo, even in dangerous places; my feet move naturally to firm footholds, and I flow. But sometimes for a day or more, I lose this feel of things, my breath is high up in my chest, and then I cling to the cliff edge as to life itself. And of course it is this clinging, the tightness of panic, that gets people killed: ‘to clutch,’ in ancient Egyptian, ‘to clutch the mountain,’ in Assyrian, were euphemisms that signified ‘to die'” (125).”–Peter Matthiessen, “The Snow Leopard”

It has been many years since I read Peter Matthiessen’s “The Snow Leopard”, but I still remember being mesmerized by the journey and often felt as if I was right there taking each step – both inner and outer.

Though I have not been to the Himalayas the quote above reminds me of when clinging or gripping would indeed have gotten me killed in the physical sense and closed off from possibility in a “soul’s journey” sense.  This was many, many years ago on the Hawaiian island of Kauai while hiking along the original Kalalau trail of the Na Pali coast.

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Kalalau cliffside trial, Na Pali coast

There are many areas along this 11 mile trial, with end destination to a pristine beach, that are considered dangerous and can result in death or severe injury.  Having read about one particular part of this trial before I even left on the trip the pattern for “gripping” or contraction in breath and body was already bound up in the fears of falling over the cliff side into the ocean below, or not being able to make it past this particular part of the trail (it was about two thirds of the way in) and being the only one of the party of 4  that couldn’t go on.

This part of the journey was about the flow that Peter Matthiessen speaks of in the quote above.  Allowing each breath to be a signpost for the next step and the next and the next.  The trial was literally along the cliff side just as in the picture to the right.  There were no handholds, a wind was blowing, and past the people you see on the trial there was a 90 degree turn that had to be negotiated with a heavy back pack on – again no barrier to falling.

As fate would have it we camped right before this part of the trial the night before we were to go on this leg of the journey.  Up to this time I had been the last one in a single file line as we hiked along absorbing the boundless beauty along the way.  After a very restless night and some fearful tears I was the one that lead the way before the others were even ready to embark.  Perhaps it was ancient Hawaiian guides who whispered in my ear to start early, breathe fully from the belly keeping my center of gravity there, ground down through my legs and feet,  take one step at a time, and completely embody the journey.

As the breath stabilized and anchored my center of gravity there were moments when my whole world shifted to NOW, and NOW, and NOW demanding that I embrace the experience and the moment of absolute presence.  There was a catharsis after that 90 degree turn when safer walking territory presented itself, yet the most powerful feeling of absolute freedom permeated every part of my being.

We don’t have to be on a cliff side with a shear drop off to understand that gripping  the breath residing high in the chest means  not only diminishing  life force and well being, but cutting off – or killing – opportunities and possibilities for thriving within the challenges that life presents to us on a daily basis.

How would you like to be breathing? How would you like to be living? Place your hands on your belly and be grateful….

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photo58Gaye Abbott, RYT assists individuals to open energetic pathways for vibrant aliveness and full expression by removing the blocks that cover our natural innate blueprint, while addressing concerns through the opening of possibility.  This is accomplished through a combination of Jin Shin Jyutsu, breath repatterning, yoga therapy and targeted guidance/mentoring revealing the larger purpose and co-creative expression that we are here for.

For those interested in receiving private sessions please contact Gaye at: JoyfulGaye@NaturalPassages.com.  Travel to your location in the U.S. or globally is available.  Please inquire.  Skype: gaye.abbott

www.GayeAbbott.com

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreewoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:

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Tornados and Rainbows

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This nature choreographed pas de deux may never be captured again. The glimmering light colors of a rainbow are always changing requesting our attention to beauty.

Do we perceive that in the moment, or instead gaze back at the rainbow minutes later only to find that it has shifted in color, intensity, or perhaps disappeared all together.

The tornado, just by it’s very presence evokes focused power, potential destruction of what is, and possibility for change as it travels across the sky and land. It demands attention by all in it’s path.

What happens when demand and request merge together? It may open a space of magic leaving the beholder in awe and wonder…..offering a space for possibility and powerful creativity.

Indulge me for a moment here. If the rainbow questioned whether it was beautiful enough or contained the right colors and intensity of light, hesitating before it made itself visible….

…or the tornado wondered if it could be powerful enough to move as intensely focused as it thought it should and hesitated….

…. the two would never have met and the moment of alchemical connection would have been lost. The original and unique creation of a “rainbow-tornado” might never have come to be.

What about our life….our individual life moments….our complete and absolute dedication to becoming all that we are meant to be this time around?

Do we hesitate, question and throw up excuses….or do we step up into our capacities as whole beings and connect with what enhances our expression and expands our service on behalf of life.

Take a very full conscious breath and consider this -

Someday you will die.

Take another conscious breath and consider -

Someday everyone that you are connected with and love will die.

Take one more full conscious breath and consider -

What will you do now with these ever changing precious moments of your life?

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photo(58)Gaye Abbott, RYT assists individuals to open energetic pathways for vibrant aliveness and full expression by removing the blocks that cover our natural innate blueprint, while addressing concerns through the opening of possibility.  This is accomplished through a combination of Jin Shin Jyutsu, breath repatterning, yoga therapy and targeted guidance/mentoring revealing the larger purpose and co-creative expression that we are here for.

For those interested in receiving private sessions please contact Gaye at: JoyfulGaye@NaturalPassages.com.  Travel to your location in the U.S. or globally is available.  Please inquire.  Skype: gaye.abbott

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreewoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:

http://gayeabbott.com/books/

Breath Taking Flight

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Have you ever simply watched and felt a bird taking flight….being present to every nuance of wing, body, air, sound….those precious moments just before the launch?  Swept with awe at this natural way to travel from one place to the next could be so filled with grace and strength.

Inhale remembering that this is natures way of receiving the best of what the body needs…..like a bird preparing for flight taking in everything that will sustain it during lift off…expanding soft belly, ribcage and back body ….resting in the pause to take it all in…..exhaling into pure fluid motion, lengthening as if the breath is soaring on a cushion of air that always promises to be there for the next inhale after the pregnant pause.

How much we take for granted with simply breathing from one moment to the next of our lives here.  Taking the wisdom of Thich Nhat Hanh when he says, “smile, breathe and go slowly” into the fullness of any single moment and falling into the rapture of a full breath in flight – ease filled, fluid and resting in the biology of what gives life.

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Take this moment now and be deeply grateful for your breath as the inhale slowly prepares for launch, pauses in the up sweep of expanded wings, soars on the exhale, and drops back to Earth during the grounded pause.  Breathing meditation.  Who wouldn’t smile…..?

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photo(58)Gaye Abbott, RYT assists individuals to drop the layers that cover the natural innate blueprint we came in with and reveal, through a combination of evolutionary energy work, Jin Shin Jyutus, Reiki and breath re-patterning, the larger purpose and co-creative expression that we are here for.

For those interested in receiving private sessions please contact Gaye at: JoyfulGaye@NaturalPassages.com.  Travel to your location in the U.S. or globally is available.  Please inquire.  Skype: gaye.abbott

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreewoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:

http://gayeabbott.com/books/

Freedom Is The Oxygen of The Soul

“Freedom is the oxygen of the soul. “
Moshe Dayan

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Did you know that you aren’t really breathing? It is the planet’s atmospheric pressure that sends breath into the body. With the process we call breathing, our body simply changes its shape in such a way that the pressure in the chest cavity is lowered, thus permitting air to be pushed into the body during inhalation. During passive breathing, as when sleeping, it is the universe that breathes for us. On the exhalation, we do nothing; the body tissues that have stretched during inhalation simply spring back to their original shape.”  Anna Hunt

When we consider that the cosmos is doing our breathing for us it reflects an unlimited potential for freedom.  The deep interconnection with everything around and beyond us feeds and nourishes our individual and interconnected lives at a level so vast that it is rather mind boggling.  Even the trees participate as the lungs of the Earth!

Imagine that when you are asleep (and awake!) there is nothing that you are having “to do”, but instead are gifted with the experience of complete freedom and support in simply being.  You are being kept alive and vibrant by forces beyond your control, ones that are intimately collaborating on your behalf.

The oxygen in your blood powers your metabolism, circulation and your ability to heal.  Decrease the levels in oxygen and you will be prone to illness, mental/emotional instability, and weak physical and mental performance.

You receive air and you give it back again without any effort on your part.  The eternal circle of giving and receiving born out of the freedom of living in this human body.

Since we have this much freedom within this crucial biological action that keeps us alive and vibrant, then there is no reason not to live within our fullest potential by expressing that unique, rich, juicy soul purpose here and now – to acknowledge that the natural world and the much larger cosmos is collaborating to keep us alive.

If you were given a gift of breath from the Earth/Universe as basic as this wouldn’t you do something with the freedom that this gives you to play in and reciprocate?

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photo(58)Gaye Abbott, RYT assists individuals to drop the layers that cover the natural innate blueprint we came in with and reveal, through a combination of evolutionary energy work, Jin Shin Jyutus, Reiki and breath re-patterning, the larger purpose and co-creative expression that we are here for.

For those interested in receiving private sessions please contact Gaye at: JoyfulGaye@NaturalPassages.com.  Travel to your location in the U.S. or globally is available.  Please inquire.  Skype: gaye.abbott

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreewoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:

http://gayeabbott.com/books/

Embodied Samadhi

Alex Grey Chakras

Image by Alex Gray

I was being asked to “drop the body” and I felt rebellion brewing up under the surface.  The well meaning yoga teacher was attempting to point out the many ways in which we contract our bodies in fear or barricade ourselves from the assumed trauma which we believe will invariably reach us in the next moment or two.  In fact, this protection, shutting down, hiding and breath holding has taken up residence in so many of us without our conscious awareness.

The “rebellion” that I felt came from many years of being within meditative and spiritual communities that encouraged us  to “drop our bodies” or “leave our bodies” in order to become “enlightened” or reach the state of Samadhi or pure consciousness apart from the mind (and body).  Since I inhabit a creative woman’s body this time around and am extremely connected to the natural world this always made no sense to me.

Spending many years making myself “wrong” for feeling as I did I would return over and over to a practice that had no grounding – or if the truth be know “meaning” for me.  It was easy for me to access those “higher states of spiritual consciousness” however my body was begging me to not leave it behind and to inhabit the “soul” of my being which can be a little messy and definitely divinely feminine!

Take a good long look at Alex Gray’s famous image above and note that this being is not only completely present in  body, but also interconnected with the earth and all elements.  We also see this in the image of Buddha below and within the quote from an influential and famous ascetic-philosopher of the 20th century Buddhadasa Bhikkhu (1906-1993) who was known as an innovative re-interpreter of Buddhist doctrine and Thai folk beliefs. Buddha’s right hand touching the earth informs us that without using any words, the Buddha calls on the Earth to bear witness.  This “earth mudra” is a beautiful example of the integration of  “embodied cognition” and a respect for and celebration of the divine feminine, creative embodied presence.

ashvattha-buddha“The entire cosmos is a cooperative. The sun, the moon, and the stars live together as a cooperative. The same is true for humans and animals, trees, and the Earth. When we realize that the world is a mutual, interdependent, cooperative enterprise — then we can build a noble environment. If our lives are not based on this truth, then we shall perish.” –Buddhadasa Bhikkhu

The times we live in are requesting – no demanding – that we embody and perhaps redefine the concept of samadhi – to acquire integration, or wholeness, or truth within the awareness of deep interconnection or “being” with all that is.  This means staying in the body and integrating it as an amazing vehicle from which we can serve others and bring our own wisdom, talents, creativity and gifts.  This means remembering that we are the earth and all elements so deeply interconnected that it would blow our minds if we could really see and feel it!

“All is one” – a non-dualistic frame of reference for relationship and cooperation.  This means taking action from a fully integrated body inhabiting the miracle of breath that moves in and out from a universal source that gives life to everything and everyone in the cosmos.  Ubuntu – essential interdependence. The Divine Feminine in partnership with the Divine Masculine.

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Everything is energy.  The blueprint that we came in with at birth is fully integrated at this deep level of Source – deeply relaxed, open and available with access to an unlimited source of energy.  After years of living in this body we have somehow managed to cover up this innate blueprint with layers and layers of protection, assumptions, beliefs, past traumas, and hiding.

This is not a “bad thing” – it simply is a state of being for survival that we have accepted and perpetuate in our day to day life moments.  This is what my yoga teacher meant by “dropping the body” – simply being aware of and then letting go of anything that is in the way of living from your natural state of being.

Fully inhabiting the breath and clearing away patterns that block this way of being is essential for living life in the deepest and most creative expression that we came in with – resonance with life.  Neglecting the “brain” of the intellect, the heart, the gut, our animalistic rhythms and even the minutest of cells within our body will only bring us to separation from ourselves, others, the natural world and the entire cosmos.

True belonging is embodied, collaborative and cooperative.  We are evolving into Universal Humanity.  Take your place….

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photo(58)  Gaye Abbott, RYT assists individuals to drop the layers that cover the natural innate blueprint we came in with and reveal, through a combination of evolutionary energy work, Jin Shin Jyutus, Reiki and breath re-patterning, the larger purpose and co-creative expression that we are here for.

For those interested in receiving private sessions please contact Gaye at: JoyfulGaye@NaturalPassages.com.  Travel to your location in the U.S. or globally is available.  Please inquire.  Skype: gaye.abbott

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreewoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:

http://gayeabbott.com/books/

Drink In The Breath

Image by Louie Schwartzberg

Image by Louie Schwartzberg

Drink in the magnificent world that has been given to you.

Take a full breath and know that this very inspiration

could be the one that the Amazon rain forest, or the tree outside of your window

has gifted to you

from a deep interconnection that yearns to remain unbroken.

(South America) - Amazon

Drink in another full breath and know that every single thing that is alive now,

and has existed before this moment in time

shares this rich resource with you.

Sip the nectar of your next in breath and be grateful for the very act of breathing

for it is the Source that keeps you alive

within this miracle of embodiment.

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Now,  as you let down your defenses

and dismantle the timbers of your protection,

allow the exhale to slip  from your body

unimpeded as a flow of water

leaping off the edge of the cliff side

falling into the depths of the pool below

instantly connecting with the elements

that create life – your life.

Nourishing the soul of being….

Amazon Rainforest South America_4

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WEBSITEhttp://www.GayeAbbott.com941546_10201139084457154_1085573193_n

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
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www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here: http://gayeabbott.com/books/

How you breathe is the way in which you live your life.  If this statement is true, then how would you like to breathe?  Shallow and restricted or full bodied and naturally?

Use a focus each week for the entire year to promote the vibrant aliveness that is your natural birth right!

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Sensuality of Breathing

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Are you breathing just a little and calling it life?”  Mary Oliver

If you try to comprehend air before breathing it, you will die.” Mark Nepo in The Book of Awakening

Following this quote by Mark Nepo is a very brief story about a Hindu sage centuries ago.  “One day in the morning of their morning prayers, the sage suddenly rose and ushered his students away from the monastery.  He rushed about them and shooed them like little ducks back into life, proclaiming, “The day is to be experienced, not understood!”

Every activity in life is an act of making divine and sacred love. What could be more sensual than simply breathing?! …and as Mary Oliver questions how fully are you really breathing/living!!

We arise in love with every inhale we take as we receive into our bodies the lover of breath.  Without conscious awareness we open ourselves to receive this gift and then complete the circle as we exhale back out giving to other life forms around 149706_561080740573113_1754882585_nus.  The trees and plants embrace our carbon dioxide and give back to us the oxygen that we crave. Interconnected.

Sensuality is completely enjoying and fully appreciating what the senses give to us in any given moment.  If breath was your lover it would be so much more enjoyable to allow it to be all that it is meant to be so that it could make love to you.  Not a technique or an understanding of breaths anatomy and physiology, but pure unadulterated pleasure and acceptance in feeling the breath move in and out.

You can hear breath moving in and out, but cannot see breath.  I sometimes wonder if we could see breath what it would look like – the pure energy of love itself?  No one knows exactly what causes the heart to beat or how that first air breath is ignited when we are born into this world.  All we know is that at first it feels something foreign to our being having come from a watery world…and then we experience the kiss of breath and are never the same again.

Our bodies undulate – open and then surrender – with each breath we take if we have welcomed the fullness of breath into our being.  Our voice can be heard by others and our songs can tenderly touch the parts of us that are yearning to dance.  This is not something that we try to comprehend.  We are simply and sensuously breathing.

Deeply within our blueprint lies the part of us that accepts simply being breathed…a metaphor for life lived in alignment dolphinswith the creative force that resides within.  One can know this place in any moment….slippery dolphin touch teaching you to embody the movement and sensuality of breath, dark earth and evergreen smells as reminders of where you have come from, wind sounds wrapping themselves around like the finest of silky garments, tastes of air across palate, slithering past the fine hairs that line your nasal passages, lying with another and joining breath as if weaving a fine art piece, lustily laughing a series of exhales which then welcomes the in breath with open arms.

How could you ever go back to taking breath for granted?  It enlivens, paints, sculpts, expands, awakens and enhances your life with every inhale and exhale, cherishing you as no other can.

Will you cherish breath and experience the sensuality of life?  Re-member…..you innately know how!

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941546_10201139084457154_1085573193_nWEBSITE www.GayeAbbott.com

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreewoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:Breath-Book-coverW2(1)

www.GayeAbbott.com/books/

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