Breathing is a fundamental and profound process of exchange between internal and external environments, between the body and the world.We inhale oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide through respiration. The oxygen is carried into the arterial blood flow via the alveoli in the lungs and, through it, feeds the body – giving it each next moment of life – when that process stops, so do we.
This basic act of exchange with the world – of breathing it in and us out – is as constant in our lives as respiration of one kind or another is in the life of the planet. Breathing is also a singular and profound act of regeneration, we are becoming new; bringing newness into the body through the breath as if bringing in the future and sending out the past.
Each inhalation is the harbinger of new possibilities and each exhalation is a new opportunity to release, to let go of something no longer useful to us.
Each breath another reminder that something will come and something will go.
Breathing is also an exchange with the world because so much in the world is in a process of respiration of one sort or another: a process of exchange, of ebb and flow. It is a tacit process of empathising and of resonating with a breathing world.
Inhalation – the basic act of breathing the air that is in the immediate vicinity of our noses/mouths is an unprejudiced act, the process of filtering out the bits we don’t want takes place in the lungs, those elements then ending up on the out breath whilst the parts we need distributed throughout the body via the blood – the outside inside.
So we are sharing the stuff of the world around us – the gases, the pollution, the perfume, the chemical products of the planet we live on and the creatures that live on it.
We are breathing each other in. If our DNA is present in our breath, are we in a process of combining with the people we come into contact with? – An evolutionary process of gradual homogenization with each other and with our and the planets emissions – we are what we breath.
This exchange with the world is inescapable. We are the world and the world is us.Breathing can be a singular pleasure – there is a deep satisfaction and sense of peace that can be found through bringing one’s attention to the breath.
I breath therefore I am – as I breath, very simply; I am.