Breathe!

“God said to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM.’”

Exodus 3:14

I am the queen of multi-tasking. While that can be a good thing in some ways, it can also take its toll. Doing four things at once keeps me from the deep enjoyment of being in the flow. It moves me away from that feeling of intrinsic interest and involvement in the task at hand. To counter my busyness tendency I regularly remind myself to step back and breathe. The simple act of being conscious of my breath shifts my awareness to the bigger picture. I take a look around and the task (or tasks!) at hand shrink to normal size. I pay attention to the life within me. I feel connected to Spirit. I realize I am not alone. Then I can begin again with a more relaxed focus.

What makes noticing our breath such a powerful practice? We understand that it has a calming physiological effect. And yet there is a deeper reason – a spiritual one. Author J. David Muyskens in his book Sacred Breath: Forty Days of Centering Prayer, shares this reflection, “This name of God (I AM THAT I AM) is written with four Hebrew consonants: AHYH. Speaking it, we might say ‘Eh-yh.’ The verb begins with A, the first letter of the alphabet (a consonant in Hebrew). ‘H’ is a ‘huh’ if you pronounce it. So when you pronounce the name God gave to Moses, you make the sound of breathing. You draw in a breath, EH, and you exhale YH.”

When we breathe we are saying the name of God. It is the first name we utter when we emerge from the womb. As adults we express it between twelve to twenty times a minute. It is the final word we voice as we make our transition into our next experience. How beautiful that ancient wisdom recognizes the real nature of our human breath. In truth it is God’s name. Breathe.

In the Love and Light of the Living Christ,

Rev. Anna

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