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the space between mindful-breathing and will…staying within the threshold of calm strength

Most of you recognize that the integration of spirit, mind, and body is a multi-level, multi-phase experience. It is dynamic, changing responsively to your inner and outer environment.

Recent events have further elucidated for me the subtleties of this dynamic process.

Participating in a fifty mile race after three weeks on the bike. To my surprise while participating in the long ride, I began to feel unable to continue…my friends encouraged me to use my yogic breath and my experience of inner peace to press on… Ultimately I noticed it was my will that gave me the strength to continue. 

Re-training myself for a distance swim for my first triathlon sprint. During the swim training, I discovered an underlying degree of anxiety that was exacerbated by loss of breath — it projected me right back to an earlier event of almost being choked when I was raped as a teenager.  It was shocking and almost uncontrollable to keep swimming – my body was fighting for life while I could clarify that it was not actually happening, my heartrate ramped up my breath became flat and labored…I couldn’t swim properly…Ultimately in the swim training it was my inner breath and my yogic training that assisted me in calming my fear and re-integrating myself into the now, to release the energy of the rape experience connected to ‘air-hunger’.

Having  endured significant sexual harassment throughout my life, I have made significant efforts, with success, to clear the vestiges of effect from this trauma, and to eradicate the insecurities that could have colored how I interacted in relationship and partnership. This information is further explained in the section on  MAAPS insecurity drivers in my book* Turning Me to We: the Art of Partnering with mindfulness.

These recent events focused how the trauma vestiges can effect your relationship with yourself.

As could be expected, the rape was the most problematic to clear.  It was held within my psychic, emotional, and cognitive memory as well as my physical body.  To this day I have a holding in my upper body that is still reminiscent of the position in which I was pinned down. This is not unusual for individuals who have survived a rape to have these various types of physical changes. I have had success in clearing this to a fairly deep level physically, emotionally, spiritually, and psychologically.

I have had the great fortune of applying mindfulness, psychotherapy, and forgiveness toward my history of harassment and the rape…as such I have created warm loving non-abusive relationships with my partner and friends.  It is for this reason that I spend so much time training, teaching, and modeling mindfulness and forgiveness as part of a healthy lifestyle individually and in relationships/partnerships.

With this being stated, I was quite surprised by the deep level of fear and anxiety that exhibited in myself during the ride and swim training.   It speaks to the depth of effect in the spirit, body, mind web that is within human consciousness; and how deeply trauma plumbs to the center of one’s being.

Humans are dynamic, multi-dimensional beings.  

The process of clearing trauma can take years and releases in layers.

Trauma for one being may not be traumatic for another.  

Spiritual trauma is the most debilitating, as spirit connects humans to the greater universe of energy.  When spiritual trauma is directly bound with physical trauma, thinking can skew off into a place that could be described as ‘hell on earth’.

Over the years I have noted that individuals who have intense anxiety suffer far more than those around them…because they do not have the peace that comes with centeredness…the peace you experience with centered mindful meditation and breath.

The lesson of this recent athletic training is that each challenge requires an integrated spirt, body, mind response.  And, that balance is affected by the vestiges of previous traumas or incorrect correlations of power.

Human beings are spiritually and willlfully driven.

  • It is your ego*/ will that can pull you through a difficult challenging task– that is where hard work and discipline are kings and queens.
  • And, it is your spiritual inner faith and knowing that is required in other challenges….
  • (ego as defined as the balanced mediator of your personality, mediator between id and superego – see Gineris, Turning Me to WE, The Art of Partnering with Mindfulness, p 186, Rebalancing: Empathy, Ego and Spirit).

The space between mindful breathing and will is the ground where all battles are fought.  This is in a phrase then entirety of Sun Tzu’s The Art of War* * to know yourself, know your enemy, to know when to act and when to be quietly strong as you prepare to act….

  • Staying within the threshold of calm is an act of faith and will. Success requires both dynamically and rhythmically in play.
  • The practice of yoga can teach you this through your use of breath to move through challenges.
  • The practice of mindful meditation can teach you this as you breath yourself into neutrality, compassion and the now.
  • The practice of athletic training can teach you this if you understand the relationship between will and allowing, remaining centered in your integrated spirit, mind and body.

If you struggle with anxiety, use these practices to bring you into a more dynamic and flexible relationship with your will (discipline/Qi) and your faith (spirit/breath/Shen), you will find more peaceful and powerful successes in all you undertake to accomplish. Namaste, in love and light, bg



You can find out more at  Even More outlined in Beth’s upcoming book, 6 steps to transcending conflict and elevating consciousness, due out in 2014.  You may participate in seminars to learn these techniques through her website.  This book is the HOW TO companion book to Turning Me to WE: The Art of Partnering with Mindfulness(2013).front cover.me2we Discover where you are in the Temperament and  the MAAPS section.  You can see how you see the world, and whether you have an attachment that is creating problems in your relationships.  MAAPS will help you to discern your insecurities and understand how and what underlies how you developed your insecurity driver (Money,  Achievement,  Attachment, Power,  Structure). You can find ways to simply connect to yourself in a loving forgiving way through theTurning No to ON: The Art of Parenting with Mindfulness Book (2011). beth's book No to ONIf you want to change your life, see how you can bring mindfulness to your parenting and relationships.  One being at a time you can elevate the way in which you treat one another and elevate the consciousness on the planet so that equality, balance, and freedom BEcome the norm for all.  in love and light, bg