In the beginning of time, “the Spirit of God was moving over the surface” of the earth (Genesis 1:2), as if blessing everything God was going to create, even before it came into being. God’s breath, ‘Ruah’, which is another word for the Spirit, is creative. God creates as He breathes; He creates life, He creates beauty. He also created you and me.
When we focus on our breath, the simple act of breathing, we instantly come in touch with the Spirit of God that is within us. Breathing consciously takes us out of our heads and brings un into the present moment, which can especially be valuable if we are dealing with a situation that is making us feel anxious. This simple spiritual practice helps us be grounded in the present moment. It puts us in touch with the centre of our being where we find peace, a place undisturbed by thought and emotion. That is a place where God dwells.
Try and spend a few minutes by simply focusing on your breath. Sit comfortably, with your feet touching the ground reminding you of the connectedness with everything around you. Initially just notice your breathing, but don’t control it. Then, breath in a deep breath, knowing that you are breathing in God’s love. Breath out anything that is occupying your mind at this time, and then breath in God’s love again. Do this for a few minutes.
Every morning when we wake up we become aware that we are given breath again, as if we are being created anew day after day. We are invited to wake up to the Presence of God who has held us in love from before our birth, to wake up to ourselves, and in general to live more awake to life, breath after breath.
Dr Iva Beranek is the Ministry Facilitator for the CMH: Ireland