Mindfullness of Breathing

MINDFULNESS OF BREATHING MEDITATION

SETTING UPSpend some time ensuring that your posture is comfortable, upright and relaxed. Direct your attention to the room around you allowing your different senses to become aware of your surroundings, particularly letting yourself feel the contact of your body with the ground and seat. Let your attention turn to your inner experience. First notice the presence of your body and just witness its existence. Then notice the sensations coming from your body , any feelings you discern and then emotions, thoughts and images. Mostly just notice that all these exist. Now let your attention turn scanning your body going through it sequentially if possible with an interest in the sensations, feelings, emotions and thoughts that arise with the attention there.
FIRST STAGEBreathing naturally, let the attention rest on a breath. At the end of the breath , mark it with a ‘one’. Notice the next breath. At the end of that breath , mark it with a ‘two’. Proceed in this manner, letting the attention follow the breath and marking the ends of each breath with the next number in the sequence 1 to 10. Following the next breath mark its end with a ‘one’ So it goes: Follow the breath in, then witness out breath, marking its end with a 1; Follow the breath in, then witness out breath, marking its end with a 2; Follow the breath in, then witness out breath, marking its end with a 3; and so on until you get to 10, then you start again at 1. You might let go and let the attention follow the out breath in this stage.
SECOND STAGEBreathing naturally, let the attention rest on a breath. At the beginning of the next breath , mark it with a ‘one’. Let the attention follow the breath in , being more ‘with’ the breath, and then out,.Still letting the attention follow the breath notice the very beginning of the next breath and marking that with a ‘two’. Proceed in this manner, arling the beginning of each breath with a number. Let the attention follow the breath and mark the beginnings of each breath with the next number in the sequence 1 to 10. Following the next breath mark its beginning with a ‘one’ You might feel more emphasis on opening up and energising with the in-breath at this stage.
THIRD STAGELet go of the numbers and let your attention be with and follow the whole breath in your body. You can use your imagination, imagine breathing in and out a colour, the gentle movement of waves on a shore etc.
FOURTH STAGENow gather your attention around the sensations at the point where the breath enters and leaves your body- usually around the tip of the nose, but sometimes in the mouth or at the back of the throat. Enjoy the subtle experience of those sensations.
SETTING DOWNTake your time coming out of the meditation by letting go of the method and spending a few minutes enjoying the effect of the practice. Then broaden out your attention to include the whole of your breath, body, the room etc.