John Nordell, 2

Interview with John Nordell

MP:

Do you see a relationship between meditation and healing? If so, can you share your personal understanding of this relationship, including how you believe meditation heals?

John:

I do see a relationship between meditation and healing. Calmness and relaxation are good for the body, mind and spirit. Calmness and relaxation can be immediate benefits of meditation, but over the long run, a meditation practice can modulate anxiety, self-doubt and frustration-healthy thoughts, healthy body. There is something vital about getting more oxygen into the blood through conscious breathing.

MP:

It sounds as if your meditation practice largely centers around your breath. I would like to hear more about your experiences with this practice. You mentioned that counting doesn't work for you, as you start forcing it, and yet simply watching it doesn't cause you to do this, is that right? And is this what you mean by conscious breathing-- witnessing the breath?

John:

My meditation practice does largely center around my breath. As I have mentioned, I sometimes combine the in and out breaths with sayings or phrases. Yes, I have found counting to be unnatural, that I force my breaths. So I watch the breath, sometimes even thinking "Going in, in, in... turning around... going out, out, out..." Sometimes I am aware of my whole body expanding and contracting with each breath.

Conscious Breathing - Meditation and Healing

Or I simply note the motions of my stomach, or the subtle sensations of air entering and leaving my nostrils. Yes, this is what I mean by conscious breathing, this witnessing. I am also working on this awareness of breathing not just in my morning meditation sessions, but also when, say, preparing a meal, working on my computer, taking pictures, driving around...

MP:

I have read where the "turning around" moments are particularly profound and there is a stillness associated with this transition-- and a freedom from thought. Also, I wonder if you ever feel as if it is not you breathing, but that life is breathing you. Does any of this ring a bell or sound familiar?

John:

Yes the "turning around" moments can be very powerful. Sometimes the pause is long and peaceful. Sometimes it feels like I stop breathing for a little while, not forced, just deep calm. "Suspending" the breath, instead of "holding" the breath, as a Kundalini Yoga instructor once told me. Not sure if I feel like life is breathing me, but sometimes during meditation I feel like I am merging with life, that I am broken down to just bits and pieces that mingle and merge with my surroundings.

Meditation Practices

Check out the original copper pyramid
for enhancing Meditation Practices.