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Zen Breathing Meditation

Try breath counting, a simple technique commonly used in Zen practice.

Begin by sitting in a comfortable position with the spine straight and head inclined slightly forward. Gently close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Then let the breath come naturally without forcing it. Ideally it will be quiet and slow, depth and rhythm may vary.

To begin the exercise, count “one” to yourself as you exhale.
The next time you exhale, count “two,” and so on up to “five.”
Then begin a new cycle, counting “one” on the next exhalation.
Never count higher than “five,” and count only when you exhale. You will know your attention has wandered when you find yourself up to “8”, ’12”, or “314”.

Try to do 10 minutes of this form of meditation daily.

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