In the mindfulness of breathing meditation practice we use the breath as an object of awareness. We follow the physical sensations of the breath as it flows in and out of the body.
This meditation practice isn’t a breathing exercise. We allow the breath to flow naturally and are simply aware of it. So there is no control over the breath.
One of the first things we learn when we try to do this meditation practice is how distracted our minds are! All sorts of thoughts and feelings flow into our awareness, and then we find we’ve forgotten all about the breath. This is a good thing to learn. If we don’t know this we can’t do anything about it.
Most of what comes into our minds is not very useful, and often it’s actually bad for us. For example we find ourselves worrying or getting angry, or putting ourselves down.
The simple principle behind this meditation practice is that if we keep taking our awareness back to the breath — over and over again — then our mind gradually quiets down and we feel more contentment.
Usually we do this with the eyes shut, to minimize distraction.
You’ll need to know how to sit effectively, so you can either go to the meditation posture guidelines or, if you already know how to sit, then go directly to the meditation practice.
Use the links on the left to navigate round the practice. If this is your first time practicing the Mindfulness of Breathing, then start with stage one.