The history and legend of the Dharma is based upon a great community that was able to reach a higher level of consciousness. This community could occur because its individual members participated fully in creating a culture of kindness, generosity, and courage.”

Breathe in. Breathe out. Let it be.

As all those who have walked this path may testify, opening of the heart is not easy and requires a lot from those who are seeking it.

Breathing Open has been created as a space for this opening to happen. We call it many things in this day of age; spiritually emerging, awakening, moving past ego, breaking open, opening up, going inwards, being authentic, developing wisdom, even enlightenment.

The naming is not of importance.

What is important, however, is the opening of self and heart and the opportunity to see the ways in which we are relating to ourselves and our environment during this transition as we learn to go inwards, finding the stillness which rests inside, developing trust as we return to our bodies and start listening and connecting to our inner self.

Breathing Open is a place to explore this mindfully and compassionately, without expectations, without further rules and without more should’ve’s. It is not a place to create another ego. It is a space of which we can patiently and compassionately uncover ourselves, exposing ourselves, to ourselves. Perhaps the hardest thing we will ever do.

An acknowledgment will take place. This acknowledgment arises gradually as and when we are able to recognize all parts of self without casting off the parts we don’t like, the parts we can’t yet own, or those we find shamed or uncomfortable to see.

Embracing ourselves fully can lead to the integration of our ‘self’ as whole and healthy individuals. When this has not happened, we find compartmentalization ; split off parts of our self that have been rejected, mostly unconsciously and often from a young age, so we find ourselves lost or confused, with dualistic natures at play. We are hiding parts to others, ultimately, hiding to ourselves.

This fragmentation which existed in us all is asking for its acknowledgment so that we can heal. Move beyond and past it. To become unstuck. We are invited to embrace this place, this space, this darkness that we feel, innocently believing we are the only ones with this. Not understanding that the whole human species come onto this beautiful mother earth seeking for our way home..

That ultimately, it is our right to integrate this.

“Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars”   ~ Khalil Gibran

Real acknowledgment doesn’t describe, report on, express, command, or manipulate. Acknowledgment ultimately brings something into being. It becomes a powerful catalyst. We can find over and over again that those assisting in others healing journeys have started their work. That through this process of acceptance and nurture of self, when we are existing as whole and healing individuals, we are able to impact constructively those around us and our larger communities.

We find that through our journey of our own inner terrain we can recognize ourselves in others, bringing about a shift in how we relate; compassion and acceptance of others becomes easier as we release the mental tensions of who others ‘should be’ as we learn we are not as solid as we perceived ourselves to be. Our level of patience can increase with this awareness. Patience with those around us and patience to those who cause us the most harm.Ultimately, we are learning that we are all free to change.

If this place of connection has not been truly laid to rest with strong roots within, then we may end up only reflecting our immediate environment and what’s occurring around us… and the question becomes… Who are we?

Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, adored meditation master, express’s that the main point of any spiritual practice is to “step out of the bureaucracy of ego”. He further illustrates this point:

We go through the motions, make the appropriate gestures, but we really do not want to sacrifice any part of our way of life. We become skillful actors, and while playing deaf and dumb to the real meaning of the teachings, we find some comfort in pretending to follow the path”

When we come to recognize our own opening, then our wholeness can grow, a healthy and safe foundation is established and we can step forth…

Breathing Open is a path of Warriorship. It is a project of one’s self. A dedicated mastery over our innate human desires, of both attachments and sufferings – a realization that these lead to our many dissatisfaction’s and frustrations. Yet, these are the very essence of life. They are bound and cannot not exist independently.

Through this self mastery, ‘Being’ – in itself – becomes a lifelong project, a love affair of self.

Our lives become Our Art, expressing the very nature of who we are in every interaction, in every exchange, in all our sharing. This can be the great love affair that we seek. Let us learn to harness our energies and turn it back onto itself through creative channeling. Thorough empowered choices, every moment can be filled with a sense of ownership of one’s life.

It begins with understanding that to be a practitioner of any spiritual practice, you have to recognize that your own body is a sacred space for health, your own mind is a sacred space for pure thinking and your own heart is a sacred space for pure speech. Without recognizing these three sacred spaces first, nothing is going to happen.

We can learn to look from another place, to observe ourselves, the other, space, nature. We can learn from the senses, their ever wakefulness. Yet it is in our silence, nourishing the spirit of will, confidence and calmness do we come across our selves. We can develop strength and prepare the way with strong roots. We will learn that each one lives a unique and unrepeatable process, worth living, whatever the starting point from where we are.

We will heal as we want to heal.

Just through touching base with a little part of ourselves, things began to shift in tremendous ways. We learn what it is to Self Parent ourselves. We start to see the illusions of how we were conditioned to be external seeking creatures, through not fault of our own, for we live and were raised in a reward and punishment culture.

Our patterns run deep. When we get uncomfortable, we tend to abdicate responsibility or overly blame ourselves for things that aren’t our fault, so it helps to have a trained pair of eyes looking at the terrain with you. 

Breathing Open is about allowing our darkness to rise, about welcoming and embracing those parts of us that we have disconnected from. A process of awakening, recognition, acceptance and a nurture of self.

“To think in terms of pessimism or optimism oversimplifies the truth.

The problem is to see reality as it is”

~ Thích Nhất Hạnh

It is only from that place that we are able to be present in our transformation… starting from a place that allows conscious choice, not reactive reactions.

We are learning to strip away the layers of doubt, pain and confusion. We learn to trust ourselves and our authenticity. We learn to nourish from within. We come to know our truest nature.

Once our awakening has begun, we are ready to help the world.

Photo Credit: Dana Marshall – Visual Artist – Primordial Matters Series Number 6 Labradorite, Spain

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