Watching the breath
Hold hands with Jesus
Jesus, having no body, has no hands. Yet he’s ever present, waiting for the slightest invitation1 from me. Possibly because of my Deeksha2 background, my decision to join my mind with his, often takes the very tactile form of holding his hand. Or allowing him to put his hand(s) on my shoulder or wherever is most helpful. Interestingly, I find I can hold his hand with a hand that is currently holding a physical object, though if I’m holding the hand of another human3 I prefer to hold Jesus’ hand with the unoccupied hand.
When I do so, I am filled with, the first word that comes to mind is courage. But it’s fuller and richer and gentler than the word courage conveys. I am filled with the mind/the attitude of Jesus. I am like him.
Observe the Breath
While continuing to hold Jesus’ hand, notice:
- the current rhythm
- the rhythm over the past few minutes, hours etc
- any irregularities
- shallowness, either in terms of the intercostal muscles or more likely in the diaphram
- notice how the diaphram feels
- watch the rhythm change in response to being observed, even though I didn’t consciously decide to change it.
- relax the diaphram - there’s really no need to make any effort in breathing, it’s something that happens quite naturally on its own without my conscious effort - much like life really.
Listen to the Dirge
Watch thoughts, feelings, pain arise and pass away (if not passing away, then not looking at it with Jesus)
As Ken puts it, we are all singing a song of pain, day in, day out. The form changes, but the content is always the same. If we look past the form and see the content, the only response we have is love. And this applies to our own song too. If he hears the dirge he sings- actually that sounds like a Course quote. And it is!
A Course In Miracles P-2.VI.1. (emphasis mine):
The process of psychotherapy, then, can be defined simply as forgiveness, for no healing can be anything else. The unforgiving are sick, believing they are unforgiven. The hanging-on to guilt, its hugging-close and sheltering, its loving protection and alert defense,–all this is but the grim refusal to forgive. “God may not enter here” the sick repeat, over and over, while they mourn their loss and yet rejoice in it. Healing occurs as a patient begins to hear the dirge he sings, and questions its validity. Until he hears it, he cannot understand that it is he who sings it to himself. To hear it is the first step in recovery. To question it must then become his choice.
In the pattern of my breath, I hear my dirge, and watch/listen to it with Jesus.
It’s quite uncomfortable. Something (some lie) has gotten trapped there and I can no longer hear the thought, instead it is just a knot of pain. But now I’d rather feel it than not.
Dirge continued in next post.