There is an interesting version of one of the Japanese martial arts called aikido, which I think translates roughly as “the way of harmonizing with the breath”. Not much different than Qi Gong or Chi Kung as I like to write, the Chinese practice that can be translated as “Skill of Breathing” and they all fit nicely in with the Indian yoga practice of pranayama or breathing exercises. I think it all comes down to becoming aware of our breathing, what may be wrong or disturbed with it and practicing some remedies. We clamp down there with constrictions, tense up, gain control, pressurize the brain, and take shape for our active lives, but also set the stage for the strains, distortions, and diseases that also can plague us. Freeing up the breathing is the goal to these practices wherever they might come from or be called. And for many of us this is what a real sense of liberation and freedom will be about.
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