by Leigh Strack, Receptionist, Eungella, Queensland.
I have been a Universal Medicine (UniMed) student for about 5 years and since that time I have been doing the Gentle Breath Meditation. For such a long time I thought I had to do the Gentle Breath Meditation to connect to myself. Now I can truly feel that by choosing to breathe gently everything else stops, and I can straight away feel myself, my true self. This has shown me that this beautiful warmth that I feel inside when I stop is always there. Essentially I don’t have to do anything to get to it, I just have to choose it.
An experience I had recently has helped me to realise this…
One morning I woke at 2am and decided to stay in bed and connect to my breath. I did this, and like it has been for some time for me, I would feel myself connect to me and then I would check to see if I was doing it right. You see, I had been living in the belief that I was not good enough and this belief kept me in the motion of always wanting to check if I was actually connected to me and if I was doing the Gentle Breath correctly.
The previous day I had a session with my practitioner and at the end of the treatment she said to me there was still some tension in my body, and asked me what I thought it was. I knew immediately, and said that it was me “wanting to have done my treatment right”, to which my practitioner replied that it’s ok, so long as I know what a trap that is, the trying to ‘get it right’ ideal.
So when I found myself doing exactly that again as I lay in bed, I made the decision to stop the checking, to stop trying to ‘get it right’. I chose to simply be with myself, to breathe and enjoy my breath.
What a lovely feeling. I could feel there was no tension in my body. My first realisation was wow, I have been living with constant tension for such a long time, tension that I had not realised I had until I felt my body without it! How is it possible to live for 45 years and not be aware of the tension that I was holding in my body every day?
Then I thought some more about this and realised what a twofold trap I had been in… not only was I trapped in the doing of wanting to get everything ‘right’ (the checking if I was connected), but when I did connect, if I didn’t feel like I do when I’m at Universal Medicine courses and workshops (which is connected to myself and a general feeling of loveliness) then I immediately judged myself as not doing ‘something right’. I had not only been trapped in the ‘doing it right’, but I was also trapped in an ideal of perfection – an ideal of how I thought I should always feel. In being this way I never let myself truly feel how I was feeling and what was actually going on for me in my life.
Since having this experience it has become quite obvious that not only was I doing the ‘checking and wanting to do things right’ trap with the Gentle Breath Meditation, but it had actually been my way of living. So I had myself under this constant surveillance (tension) wanting to be gentle, always checking to see if I had been gentle, instead of simply choosing to be gentle.
It was in everything I was doing in my day… washing up, feeding the animals, working on the computer, conversing with people, just to name a few. As I became more and more aware of this I also realised that living this way has kept me feeling not good enough and has fed the unsureness that I feel inside, so this has meant that I have been living constantly on guard – trying to be sure that I do and say the right things.
I can now feel how ridiculous it has been to live this way, and that it is much simpler to live responding as things arise – no longer feeling that I have to be pre–prepared for everything that will happen in my life.
As I have begun to live this awareness in my life I have had moments of frustration when I realise I have dropped into the checking again. However, what has been particularly amazing in all of this is how my body has changed – it feels much more fluid as I move. I can now feel the tenderness that I have inside me and I am now able to express from my love and tenderness.
As the weeks roll on I am finding that I am being so much more gentle, loving and tender with myself, and I know that I am also being this way with others in my life. Now, instead of getting frustrated when I discover yet another place in my life where the checking has been, it is now a simple awareness and “wow, there too” kind of feeling… an appreciation of seeing another area I can work with and an acceptance of it, knowing deeply that it is no longer my way of living.
Inspired by the work of Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine.