Utilizing the power of the breath

Saturday, October 27, 2012 by: Joe Jennings
Tags: breathing, breath works, psychological health

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(NaturalNews) This article will look at how people can use the breath to actively change their day-to-day experience of reality with simple tools and how, with more in-depth exploration of the breath, they can recognize and release the subconscious 'junk' that keeps us trapped in old patterns and paradigms of existence and experience.

We are now getting an understanding of how important correct breathing is. How it directly influences our physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual state and how inhibited breathing, which is sadly common, can negatively affect these states.

There are many tools for relaxation out there. A common theme with them all is that they relax the breath, leading to deeper, rhythmic breathing. Anyone who has done any kind of meditation or breathing exercises will know how peaceful and blissful deep rhythmic breathing can be. A simple example of this effect would be listening to classical music. Its soothing tones quickly changes our breathing. If you pay attention, you will notice that you will be breathing in a more relaxed, deeper way. Therefore, rather than bothering with various different paraphernalia or rituals for relaxation you could simple go straight to the breath and consciously cultivate the peace and bliss you desire.

There are many different breathing tools and systems around and, though they are generally aimed at relaxation and spiritual development, there are also some that can be used for achieving different states. Just as listening to music with fast, heavy beats can cause us to get stimulated, again because the breathing changes. Some breathing exercises are faster and more powerful, which leaves us feeling more energized and active, for instance, dragon breathing or the warrior breath. Others, like alternative nostril breathing, help to balance our systems (right and left cerebral activity, endocrine and nervous system, etc.) putting us in a state of parasympathetic arousal. However, few actively reach and resolve the embedded, repressed issues that cause breathing inhibition and lead to patterns that negatively impact our interpretation of reality.

Conscious connected breathing

One such tool is breathwork. One of the first breathwork systems, which inspired the majority of the other systems, is Rebirthing Breathwork. Rebirthing Breathwork uses conscious connected breathing (as do many of the other techniques) to delve deep into our beings, powerfully removing physical and energetic blockages as well as dissolving the emotional, energetic traumas (that are also often somatized). It is therefore able to release our entrained and inhibited breathing mechanisms allowing us to breath fully into, and thus experience fully, life once more.

Rebirthing Breathwork has paid such close attention to breathing inhibition, like Chinese medicine does with the pulse and tongue or Iridology with the eye, that practitioners have identified a variety of breathing deviations. These deviations closely relate to subconscious emotional patterns that are replayed and recreated due to, in part, our subconscious belief in them and also because of the way we breath, which continually feeds these patterns. One example would be people who force the exhale, this is common in those who try to deny/force out their emotions, their feelings of guilt or undeserving. Whereas those who force the inhale are often forcing things in life, trying too hard, or constantly struggling, which is usually an overcompensation for patterns of feeling not good enough. Full details on all of the deviations can be found in The Manual for Rebirthers

A simple, and short example of conscious connected breathing, which won't start a full session as these usually last an hour or more and should only be done with an experienced guide, is the 20 connected breaths. To see a video guide of this go to the videos section of:


Fanny Van Laere & Leonard Orr - The Manual for Rebirthers
Lalande, L., Bambling, M., King, R., Lowe, R. (2012). 'Breathwork: An additional treatment option for depression and anxiety?' The Journal of Contemporary Pyschotherapy. 42, (2). p113-119.
Rebirthing Breathwork International -

About the author:
Joe Jennings is an experienced Rebirthing Breathwork practitioner who was trained by the founder Leonard Orr and Fanny Van Laere.
He has written a small book about his first experiences with the breath as well as a number of articles which have been published in various magazines.
He is currently the co-ordinator of Rebirthing Breathwork International in the UK and a committee member of the British Rebirthing Society.
He has begun a large scale study into the physiological and psychological effects of Rebirthing Breathwork.
He gives private sessions and teaches in the UK.
For more information please visit

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