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Chapter 3: Breath - A Bridge to the Universe

Your body energy is just fuel energy. It is nothing but petrol. You eat something, you drink something - it creates energy. It is just giving fuel to the body. Stop eating and drinking and your body will fall dead. Not just now, it will take three months at least, because you have reservoirs of petrol. You have accumulated much energy; it can run for at least three months without going to any petrol station. It can run; it has a reservoir. For an emergency, any emergency, you may need it.

This is “fuel” energy. The center is not getting any fuel energy. That is why Shiva says it is energy-less. It is not dependent on your eating and drinking. It is connected with the cosmic source; it is cosmic energy. That is why he says energy-less, energy-filled center. The moment you can feel the center from where breath goes out or comes in, the very point where the breaths fuse - that center - if you become aware of it, then enlightenment.

The fourth technique:

Or, when breath is all out (up) and stopped of itself, or all in (down) and stopped - in such universal pause, one’s small self vanishes. This is difficult only for the impure.

But then it is difficult for everyone because, he says,

This is difficult only for the impure.

But who is the pure one? It is difficult for you; you cannot practice it. But you can feel it sometimes suddenly. You are driving a car and suddenly you feel there is going to be an accident. Breathing will stop. If it is out, it will remain out. If it is in, it will remain in. You cannot breathe in such an emergency; you cannot afford it. Everything stops, departs.

Or, when breath is all out (up) and stopped of itself, or all in (down) and stopped - in such universal pause, one’s small self vanishes.

Your small self is only a daily utility. In emergencies you cannot remember it. Who you are - the name, the bank balance, the prestige, everything - just evaporates. Your car is just heading toward another car; another moment and there will be death. In this moment there will be a pause. Even for the impure there will be a pause. Suddenly breathing stops. If you can be aware in that moment, you can reach the goal.

Zen monks have tried this method very much in Japan. That is why their methods seem very weird, absurd, strange. They have done many inconceivable things. A master will throw someone out of the house. Suddenly the master will begin slapping the disciple without any rhyme or reason, without any cause.