I am an amateur at Tai-Chi, and at sitting the full lotus, and at being a “love radiator” as Chunyi Lin puts it, yet even an amateur can say that we have two struggles here: one is to heal ourselves, which is how the interview opens, and the other is to find the words and actions to communicate the means of healing to others.
Even though we are talking about “unproveable” realities, I believe we can find a Western vocabulary to describe relationships that demonstrate these realities exist. This is like physicists discovering the existence of habitable planets thousands of light years away by examining perturbations in the orbits of their stars; the planets themselves are unobservable, but their existence is demonstrated in the effect they have on the stars we can track.
I have no intention of practicing reverse breathing. That doesn’t mean I don’t do reverse breathing some of the time, especially in the lotus or on the dance floor, and maybe it’s useful to some people to very deliberately start out to do reverse breathing some of the time.
I look to see how the place that my consciousness occurs has impact and opens feeling, in the instant. I recognize that there’s a stretch in existence throughout the fascial structure of my body as consciousness takes place, and that the autonomic respirations coordinate through the place of occurrence of consciousness to cause action that opens the nerve channels between vertebrae; thus, the place that consciousness occurs has impact and opens feeling, through the body to the surface of the skin and in the senses.
We all know what it feels like to stretch, and how close stretch can be to pain; a lot of my practice now is learning what is stretching, and how to relax and allow stretch and activity to reciprocate as consciousness takes place. The length of the movement of breath can be a guide to healthy stretch and the subsequent involuntary activity, both with the breath in and with the breath out.
The recognition that aversion to pain, attachment to pleasure, or ignorance of neutral sensations can condition the subsequent place of occurrence of consciousness is vital to me, as this recognition precedes a witness that is itself the end of suffering at the moment. The natural mind, as it were, has within it the end of suffering; we are all healers, and I think it’s important to let ourselves be healed rather than to set out toward any particular breathing.