Watch Your Breath


In his first Sutra, Shiva gives this most simple meditation. Buddha used this technique and called it ‘Vipassana’ which means sitting with the Self, or sitting with God. Indeed, this method is the essence of Buddhism. No other technique has brought so many millions to enlightenment. When asked if he had to pick one of the millions of meditation techniques, Nithyananda says that this is the one he would choose because if all spiritual knowledge on the planet were lost, this is the one that could keep enlightenment alive.

The secret lies in the simple observance and bringing awareness and presence to the breath. The process of breathing in and out is not a parallel movement as one might think, but rather a circular movement. Between the in breath (down) and the out breath (up) and again between the out and in breaths there are gaps.

When reaching the gap the mind stops. Fear of losing identity causes a jump over the gap because identity doesn’t exist there. There is avoidance of maintaining awareness in this gap because the fear of losing identity is stronger than the fear of death. What may happen to “me” after “I” dies is a less terrifying thought than “I” won’t exist. This creates the impulse to protect the unreal or comparative reality (identity) from the real existential reality (pure consciousness).

Here Shiva is creating the subtlest possible technique. A human being as such cannot work directly on the ether or mind. It can only be touched through the breath and this is the bridge between the individual and the Universe. It is the bridge between the body and the mind. Humans are composed of 5 elements, but it is only when the breath happens that mind happens. The body is matter. The mind is ether. The breath is the bridge.

The breath and the mind are very closely related. The length, breadth, and depth of the breath correspond directly to the number of thoughts experienced. With long slow deep breaths, the number of thoughts is reduced. Being aware of the unconscious fear and slowing the thoughts enhances the ability to drop into the neutral zone, just as when driving a car it is necessary to go into neutral before changing gears.


  1. Quiet the mind with long, slow, deep breaths

  2. Bring awareness to the gap just at the end of the in (down) breath, and just before it turns up into the out breath, and again between the out (up) and in (down) breaths.

  3. Relax. Allow the breath to carry you into your inner space, the zone where neither breath nor mind exist.

  4. Surrender. Allow yourself to become more and more comfortable with this neutral zone. If you are able to relax into this zone with awareness, an explosion of consciousness can happen.

  5. Be patient. You cannot bully yourself into a sense of security.

In every breath God is knocking at your door.