Weekly Reading Topic for April 11, 2020: Be Breathed
Well, good morning, love! I just opened a Reading for you, my newsletter subscribers and here’s what I heard in answer to the following:
What do my readers most need to hear this weekend? What is the most important message to send to my beloved readers?
The answer was: “Be Breathed.”
What follows is your weekly reading, dear one.
Weekly Reading │ Be Breathed
Q: What do we need to know about “Be Breathed?”
A: Every moment of every day of your life your lungs work to take care of you.
They inflate, allowing air to flood them. They take the oxygen from the air and give it over to the blood, exchanging it for carbon dioxide and other gases that are not useful to have in the body.
Then, they deflate, pushing air out of themselves, and with it all those gases you don’t need.
They do this over and over and over, without you having to think about it or work at it.
Until they can’t anymore.
Take a moment to breathe, now, with me. Feel your lungs expand and pull in air, hold it for the transfer, and then release it back to the outside.
Do that for a few more breaths, just letting your lungs do their thing.
And now, change your mind about this. Decide that it isn’t your lungs pulling in the air: it’s the environment pushing air into them. Someone is BLOWING air into your lungs!
And then, someone sucks the air OUT of your lungs.
Don’t be scared. This may be a new way of thinking about breathing, but technically it is just as accurate as the old way. And it helps you to tune in to your breath, to realize that while it happens because your body is alive, you don’t always have full control.
Sometimes you are riding a bike, and the wind in your face feels too forceful to open your mouth for breath, so you have to close your mouth and use your nostrils as the only entry. The world did that.
Sometimes you have a cold, and you cough and your chest muscles get sore, and you find it harder to breathe, not just because of the phlegm, but also because the tiny little muscles between your ribs fatigue. It’s hard work to push and pull on ribs all day! They need HELP. The World can help!
As you breathe, allow the world to breathe YOU. Feel the air coming in, and your body opening wider to accept it. Your ribs are expanding, your breath is deeper. And when you breathe out, the world is taking the breath away from you. You give it all over.
And your lungs are stronger for it. The muscles in your rib cage are more rested, more ready for the next breath. They have relaxed, this tiny little bit, and you feel BETTER.
So continue to let the world breathe for you because as you do that, you will start to notice just how beautiful the world can be. Even just your little part of the world, at home. Now.
The world has delectable smells when you start to breathe this way. They flood in, the smell of plumeria, or a flowering lemon tree. Even smells we think of as unpleasant can make us feel more alive when we encounter them.
When we think of ourselves as breathing, we delude ourselves into thinking we have control.
When we think of ourselves as being breathed, we wake up to the reality that the world is giving US breath, and removing our toxins.
Nourishing us, several times a minute, by delivering oxygen, and cleansing us, several times a minute, by taking away harmful gases.
We can live without food for weeks, for days without water, but only for minutes without breath.
Allow the world to give you what you most need.
We are so very lucky to have this world, breathing us. And we can remember our good fortune multiple times a minute, just by tuning in and remembering: We Are Breathed.
And when we do, we start to smell the flowers. We slow our mind and our hands still. We see our children smile and we beam right back. The music sounds better because we are listening to it in the same way — realizing the music is moving US.
Sing, just a little bit, and feel how when you are being breathed you can feel the sound pulled from deeper within. It comes out of the bowl of your pelvis, where you have the most room, the most resonance.
If you listen to Hawaiians chanting their songs, you will hear the sounds made when humans allow the World to Breathe them.
The power and resonance is undeniable. Do these sounds really come from a human? No. They don’t! They come from the World breathing a human, and the human taking in that breath WITHOUT RESISTANCE, and allowing it to leave, again WITHOUT RESISTANCE.
This time is critical, and it is big, and it is full of pressure. And yet, until we stop breathing, we are breathing, and we are in and of the World. And so it is our kokua (our responsibility to help, like tikkun olam in Judiasm).
We should be taking this time to allow the World to breathe us, to use our lungs as its own lungs.
I think this week’s reading is coming to me in part because of a conversation I heard earlier this week. The poet Joy Harjo was speaking on the Beautiful Writers podcast about the coronavirus. She pointed out that the planet’s atmosphere has been congested, and the winds have changed in the last few years.
And now we have a virus that is asking a lot of the elderly, in particular. Her mother’s lungs are at risk, specifically, and she realized: her mother’s lungs don’t work well; the planet’s lungs don’t work well.
And perhaps, this virus is asking humans to help our Mother Earth (in Harjo’s way of speaking) breathe. We are being asked to breathe ourselves and help her to clear her lungs.
This is a strong statement. And it’s a big job. To restore the winds? Living in a place where the trade winds blow almost every day of the year, I can attest that they have stopped blowing for days, even weeks, in the last couple of years.
And that has led to real changes in our island’s weather.
And so I’m going to listen to our poet laureate, and to the Hawaiian chant, and take deep breaths. Let the World Breathe Me this weekend… because there are beautiful flowers available in this season, and we can take a moment in the midst of this weird and unprecedented time, and be reminded.
When we allow the world to breathe us, we can stop, and smell the flowers.
Rest, and walk, and Be Breathed.
Much Love to You!
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