Awareness in the Breath | Awareness in the Moment

"Every breath which is exhaled from within must be exhaled with awareness and presence of mind and so that the mind does not stray into forgetfulness."

Baha ad-din Naqshband said: "The foundation of our work is in the breath. The more that one is able to be conscious of one's breathing, the stronger is one's inner life. It is a must for everyone to safeguard his breath in the time of his inhalation and exhalation and further, to safeguard his breath in the interval between the inhalation and exhalation."

As the seeker becomes occupied with the exercise of the moment (i.e. remembering the breath), he turns his attention from remembering the past and thinking of the future, and focuses on each breath until it is expired.

Sa'd ud-din Kashghari added: "Hush dar dam (Awareness of breath) is moving from breath to breath so there is no heedlessness but rather there is presence, and with each breath that we take should be the remembrance of the Real."

Sheikh Abul Janab Najmuddin al-Kubra said in his book, Fawatih al-Jamal: "Dhikr (remembrance of God in the breath) is flowing in the body of every single living creature by the necessity of their breath -- even without will -- as a sign of obedience, which is part of their creation. Through their breathing, the sound of the letter 'Ha' of the Divine Name Allah is made with every exhalation and inhalation and it is a sign of the Unseen Essence serving to emphasize the Uniqueness of God. Therefore it is necessary to be present with that breathing, in order to realize the Essence of the Creator."

The name Allah, which encompasses the ninety-nine Names and Attributes, consists of four letters, Alif, Lam, Lam and Hah (ALLAH). The people of Sufism say that the absolute unseen Essence of Allah Exalted and Almighty is expressed by the last letter vowelized by the Alif, "Hah." It represents the Absolutely Unseen "He-ness" of the Exalted God (Ghayb al-Huwiyya al-Mutlaqa lillah 'azza wa jall) in which the mystic loses his separate identity with every "hah" in his breath. The first Lam is for the sake of identification (tacrif) and the second Lam is for the sake of emphasis (mubalagha).

The soul has long been thought to be in the breath. "For the early thinkers the soul was visualized sensuously as a breath-body." Awareness of the breath makes us aware of the soul and the inner body, inner self, which belong to the moment.

The Quranic verse that points to the secret of God and creation in the breath: Then He (God) fashioned him (adam) and breathed into him of His Spirit. The Quran 32:9

:: from the Eleven Principles of the Naqshbhandi Path @ GoldenSufi website.
:: another good article in wahiduddin.net on breath's esoteric value image credit: Listen for Joy

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Technology of the Heart: Awareness in the Breath | Awareness in the Moment
Awareness in the Breath | Awareness in the Moment
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