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The Bad Are The Good In The Egg
This is not only the case with a robber or a murderer, but al...

Zen In The Dark Age
The latter half of the Ashikaga period was the age of arms an...

Bodhidharma And His Successor The Second Patriarch
China was not, however, an uncultivated[FN#29] land for the s...

The Second And The Third Patriarchs
After the death of the First Patriarch, in A.D. 528, Hwui Ko ...

Buddha-nature Is The Common Source Of Morals
Furthermore, Buddha-nature or real self, being the seat of lo...

The Irrationality Of The Belief Of Immortality
Occidental minds believe in a mysterious entity under the nam...

Retribution In The Past The Present And The Future Life
Then a question suggests itself: If there be no soul that su...

Poetical Intuition And Zen
Since Universal Life or Spirit permeates the universe, the po...

Zen Is Not Nihilistic
Zen judged from ancient Zen masters' aphorisms may seem, at t...

Nature And Her Lesson
Nature offers us nectar and ambrosia every day, and everywher...

Where Then Does The Error Lie?
Where, then, does the error lie in the four possible proposit...

Idealistic Scepticism Concerning Objective Reality
But extreme Idealism identifies 'to be' with 'to be known,' a...

Bodhidharma And The Emperor Wu
No sooner had Bodhidharma landed at Kwang Cheu in Southern Ch...

Man Is Both Good-natured And Bad-natured According To Yan Hiung
According to Yang Hiung and his followers, good is no less re...

The Betterment Of Life
Again, people nowadays seem to feel keenly the wound of the ...

The Great Person And Small Person
For these reasons Zen proposes to call man Buddha-natured or ...

Pessimistic View Of The Ancient Hindus
In addition to this, the new theory of matter has entirely ov...

Life In The Concrete
Life in the concrete, which we are living, greatly differs fr...

Zen Is Iconoclastic
For the followers of Bodhidharma, however, this conception of...

The Parable Of A Drunkard
Now the question arises, If all human beings are endowed with...

The Breathing Exercise Of The Yogi

Breathing exercise is one of the practices of Yoga, and somewhat
similar in its method and end to those of Zen. We quote here[FN#247]
Yogi Ramacharaka to show how modern Yogis practise it: (1) Stand or
sit erect. Breathing through the nostrils, inhale steadily, first
filling the lower part of the lungs, which is accomplished by
bringing into play the diaphragm, which, descending, exerts a gentle
pressure on the abdominal organs, pushing forward the front walls of
the abdomen. Then fill the middle part of the lungs, pushing out the
lower ribs, breastbone, and chest. Then fill the higher portion of
the lungs, protruding the upper chest, thus lifting the chest,
including the upper six or seven pairs of ribs. In the final
movement the lower part of the abdomen will be slightly drawn in,
which movement gives the lungs a support, and also helps to fill the
highest part of the lungs. At the first reading it may appear that
this breath consists of three distinct movements. This, however, is
not the correct idea. The inhalation is continuous, the entire chest
cavity from the lower diaphragm to the highest point of the chest in
the region of the collar-bone being expanded with a uniform movement.
Avoid a jerking series of inhalations, and strive to attain a
steady, continuous action. Practice will soon overcome the tendency
to divide the inhalation into three movements, and will result in a
uniform continuous breath. You will be able to complete the
inhalation in a couple of seconds after a little practice. (2)
Retain the breath a few seconds. (3) Exhale quite slowly, holding
the chest in a firm position, and drawing the abdomen in a little and
lifting it upward slowly as the air leaves the lungs. When the air
is entirely exhaled, relax the chest and abdomen. A little practice
will render this part of exercise easy, and the movement once
acquired will be afterwards performed almost automatically.

[FN#247] Hatha Yoga, pp. 112, 113.

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