Each year, as the GIC approaches, the many and diverse nodes of the IBF network seem to all come strongly to life simultaneously. This year we look forward to our largest conference ever; feel the presence of working groups that have sustained continuous connection throughout the year; have enjoyed our most abundant period of newsletter publication in memory; and find ourselves at a time when the practices of Breathwork and conscious breathing are receiving much more rapid growth of interest and uptake in the world than we have grown used to.
During some years in the IBF team we have debated whether our main job is actually to hold the identity of IBF in place between the summer flowerings at GIC. That in itself is not a small task for an organisation whose membership is so mobile and fluid. But this year there is a strong sense of growth and solidification. It comes with its tangles as well as its shoots, finding gaps to be filled in our infrastructure along with each bold new plan. Overall though, as we can't help but feel from reading this month's newsletter content, the culmination of Robin Lawley's first excellent year of curating, that the world of Breathwork is very much alive and well.
Read on to learn more of what to expect at GIC 2017; a preview of GIC 2018; the latest from Breathing Circle, some reflections on breathing and music and two in depth pieces, reflecting in turn experiential and analytic observations of Breathwork practice, to nourish both your hemispheres.
IBF Executive Team: Mark, Vanessa and Pierre
Set an example for sustainability on the planet and come to GIC 2017...
At GIC 2017, we want to promote IBF as an ecologically-minded organisation and to present Austria as an environmentally conscious country.
You will find containers for litter recycling in many places, so please use them accordingly during the conference week.
The bags with your welcoming package will not only have a trendy design, but are produced from recycled material by a company which employs handicapped persons to offer them a second chance on the job market.
You will receive reusable glass water bottles in your bag to avoid using plastic ones. We ask you to take your water supply from the tab in the hotels – this is high quality water, which comes from the surrounding mountains, so there are no transport costs involved in your water consumption.
Your name badge will not contain any plastic, but it will be made of arolla (Swiss) pine wood, and will offer you a nice fragrance every day.
When you give us your arrival dates, you will get detailed information about getting to the conference venue. We recommend choosing public transport (the Austrian railway gets its electricity from hydro-electrical power stations), which is the best way to travel from an environmental point of view.
We are providing vegetarian food at the conference, as the production and consequently the consumption of meat is one of the main drivers for carbon dioxide emissions on the planet.
The natural swimming pool of the river Schwarza is your environmentally friendliest way to bathe in fresh water.
Join us for this marvellous breathing event of the year in a beautiful natural setting and register for GIC 2017 at
Musical events planned for the conference:
Adventures in Rhythm and Sound
ABARGA (Bernhard Weiss and Christian Koch)
Aug 5th, 20:30
Songs About Life
Aug 6th, 20:30
Songs and Shamanic Ritual Music
SUNNA (Nicole and Klemens Robe)
Aug 7th, 20:30
Free your Soul - Feel the Spirit / Mantras and Healing Songs
Julia Pointner (and all who want to join)
Aug 8th, 20:30
Mystic Silence of Om
Aug 9th, 20:30
The Music of Breathing
By Carlos Velasco, Spain. A psychologist, psychotherapist and naturopath with more than 30 years experience of investigating and diagnosing the mechanics of breathing, psycho-diagnosis and treatment.
Nada Brahma, the Universe, is a vibration of Brahma and creates in every instant worlds from overflowing pure love, thanks to Its Compassionate Breath.
The breath of an adult human being pulsates 18 times per minute and in its expansion and compression produces the sound So Ham and Om. The universe vibrates and makes sounds. The whole human body is a musical instrument and every creature is formed of the vibrant energy of Prana, and has its its own specific sound coming from the Great Prana.
Everything pulses in creation, everything is regulated by the law of pulsation. This pulsation is expressed in a movement of contrasting forces, one centrifugal and the other centripetal and is present in every part of existence; from galaxies to cells, including the mechanism of breathing . The pulsation of the breath, like any other organ, expresses the movement of life. The expansion of the inhalation and the compression of the exhalation produce life, since everything pulses in the organism: the peristaltic movements, the heart beat, the cranial sacral pulse, etc. In the human organism, several rhythmic movements or pulsations are present, that give us information about the vitality of a person.
The act of breathing produces music. When breathing, the bellows of the respiratory instrument produce a musical sound. If the breath is a vibrant inspiration accepting the Great Prana, then, breathing inhales this vibration. In the respiratory wave of inhalation, apnea and exhalation, the atoms dance and become possessed by ecstasy and enlightened by the energy of the Great Prana.
When the respiratory mechanism functions correctly, naturally and freely, it produces harmonious music due to the fact that every bodily system is integrated. (The respiratory, circulatory, skeletal muscle, visceral and hormonal systems, etc.) Everything is in order. Breathing is the inspiration of the muses and connects us to the music of the spheres. Every gentle expression of our personal prana travels out into the universe.
The music of breathing springs from silence, or apnea. Without silence there is no creation, there is no music. The unborn’s respiratory mechanism is in apnea —there is no movement— and it is at birth and with the first inhalation that for the first time air comes through the lungs. Silence is the original support where the pentagram and musical score sit, the inhalation-apnea-exhalation start composing the score with its musical notes over the field of apneas/silences. The diaphragm, or master beam Tai, is the interspace between these two worlds: the inhalation and the exhalation. The diaphragm is the force of the respiratory bellows that move the quill of inhalation and exhalation, writing the score of the music of breathing. It is in the fertile void of breathing where audible music is composed. This fertile void/silence is the container, the content is the air that when entering or exiting creates musical notes. In this way, the emptiness of the respiratory system contains the nectar of audible and harmonious breathing.
Breathing and the voice
Breathing does not rely on the emitted word but the word does require breath. Without an air column that makes the vocal cords vibrate, there cannot be voice or articulated words.
The sacred syllable Om —the primal sound with which made and maintained creation— holds a big mystery. This sound must always be present in the emission of the voice/words of human beings. The sound Om is a vessel for the word, since thanks to Om the word flows and runs and becomes music.
So Ham, the great mantra of sacredness. Right at birth, our first breath produces the sound “so” in the inhalation and the sound “ham” in the exhalation. So Ham could be translated as: I am the Truth. This action and its effect allow us to remember the intimate bond we have with the Creator of Worlds. Reciting this, the lover takes the breath of Great Prana and returns it.
I am music thanks to breathing which makes the vocal cords vibrate.
The music that lives in me awakes when the air column of exhalation caresses the vocal cords. Thanks to exhalation, the word, recitation and singing are created, in addition to a variety of other sounds. Breathing produces music inside me since I am a wind instrument. Just as air resonates in a tube, I am a vibrating column thanks to the movement of air supported by the diaphragm and pelvic cavity.
I am the breath that resonates through my whole body. If my body is sufficiently liberated of tensions, the breathing mechanism will be healthy and the voice will resonate in my body, healing it; but breathing can also produce "wrong" sounds when there are psycho-emotional blocks. If the breathing pattern in daily life is not complete or integral, but is only based on the rib-collarbone or abdominal areas and/or is split into three movements, the music of breathing will sound discordant, it will produce “bad music”.
Vibration precedes sound. Vibration produces sound/music
Breathing makes bodies vibrate and produces music. The diaphragm moves downwards and creates a vacuum of pressure, then the air starts to create a musical sound when it enters through the nostrils, then through the pharynx until the trachea is reached: there it is directed into two bronchial tubes, then bronchioles… all the way down to 700 million alveoli, expanding them. In exhalation the air also creates musical vibrations.
The biology of the voice
The voice is produced in the body; breathing, voice and word inhabit the body. Let there be breath!, Let there be voice!, Let there be sound, music!
Breath and the voice embody and create reality. The voice uses the body, because without the body and without the breath there is no voice. Breathing and the voice have to harmonise, because in doing so, harmony will be created between them, they will be healthier. The physical and energetic bodies become unified. The voice is produced in the body. The voice is intimately related with emotions and feelings. Therefore, breathing, voice and emotions become a fused unity. A fourth element can be added to this trilogy, being or essence. Voice and breath-essence are interrelated. When the voice is harmonious, the essence becomes more present and vice versa.
Healing with breathing
Breathing is musical vibration, vital energy that flows through our body, especially through nadis or energetic channels. The vibrational field is the root of every spiritual experience, inside or outside oneself, especially if we feel it when we are in an expansive state of consciousness with an empty mind.
Our breath or personal prana has to be attuned and united with the Great Breath, the Divine Verb. Every breath reaches us from the Great Breath, being a vibration that resonates within us and vitalises us. Every breath that enters us and that inhabits us, is made out of musical vibrations and vibrates and sets every cell of our body to music; like the living flame that fuels and keeps the flame of life alive that lives inside every one of us.
Just like music has always had the great capacity to heal psycho-emotional and physical problems,for both musicians and listeners, the music produced by our breathing heals us and also heals others, since breathing cures the breather and with their own breathing they can heal others.
Audible breath makes the chakra system vibrate
The human being is a cavity, a cosmic bowl similar to a flute, it is a musical instrument traversed by the Great Prana. Personal prana resides in the body and animates different states, having an impact on the chakra system activating it and balancing it thanks to the breath. By refining our breathing in a natural and correct way, we can balance the chakras producing more harmonious music in every breath, the music that resonates with each breath.
GIC 2018 -Save the dates!
The GIC2018 will be held in France from the 28th of July till the 4th of August 2018.
The organisation is under the responsibility of both Joël Jégo (IBF National Coordinator for France) and Pierre Josis (IBF Board team member).
The theme will be: “Respirez la Joie !” / “Breath and Joy”.
The Conference venue is:
Les Jardins de L’Anjou
9, Chemin du Vaujou
49620 Mauges sur Loire (300km west of Paris, near Angers and 80km away from Nantes International Airport)
Breathing Circle News
from Natalia Brown
June 2017 saw the 100th consecutive month of Breathing Circles. That means somewhere around the World for 100 months (just over 8 years) there have been conscious breathers connecting their breath, connecting others to their breath and connecting to other breath professionals every month at / around the same time through this Global network.
That is quite an achievement and I feel like we are well on our way to realising my vision, which is to become a regular, inclusive, energetic ‘heart-beat’ representing peace, integration and personal responsibility in the World.
The beauty of the breath, is that it is limitless and I see this community the same way. I would love to continue to invite breath practitioners, trainers, teachers from all breath modalities to join us in this simple activity of breathing together once a month. So, maybe you can help? Do you have colleagues who are running breath events or qualified to do so? Why not tell them about Breathing Circle and invite them to join us in the monthly breathe?
If we all invited one new facilitator on board, we would double the size of the network! That way we will reach even more people every month with the simple practice of breathing and living consciously – whilst also resourcing ourselves through being in active connection to breath community.
Discussion Panel at Breathfest, Bali - March 2017
Submitted by Ana Berenguer
During the BreathFest, an event organized by Christabel Zamor in cooperation with Bali Spirit Festival, a very interesting discussion panel took place to share visions about Breathwork. It was moderated by Noelani Love.
The participants were:
Breathwork students prepared the following questions for the panel:
Lena Kristina Tuulse, founder of the Swedish Breathwork Institute
Dana-Dharma Devi and Ashanna Solaris, founders of Clarity Breathwork
Amara Samata, founder of Inner Guidance Institute
Christabel Zamor, founder of Breath of Bliss
Anthony Abbagnano, founder of Alchemy of Breath
Richard Bock from Quantum Light Breath
Giten Tonkow, founder of BioDynamic Breath.
What is the most important thing that you have learned as a breathwork facilitator?
How does breathwork open your heart and how can it be kept open after the session?
How does breathwork enhance sexual energy?
What is your biggest dream for Breathwork in the future?
What is the most important thing that you have learned as a breathwork facilitator?
: What I’ve learned is
that love is the answer no matter what the question is. It’s the beginning, the middle and the end. It has the capacity to hold space for everything that arises.
: The organism is a divinely intelligent creation that wants to come into integration and let go of trauma. It wants to heal and come into oneness and into what we are meant to be so that we are able to give our gifts out to the world. Healing is inevitable.
Giten: What I’ve learned is not to get attached to any experience because everything will pass, no matter how dark it is or how great it is. I’ve seen this over and over being with the participants in the groups.
: Nowadays we have so many teachers talking about being present and the power of now that it has become a “new” concept. Through attending to your breath and sensing into your body you can easily access presence. For me assisting others to really being here is such a delightful experience. Breathwork is a great tool for coming back home to your body and recognising that it’s an alive miracle.
: I’ve learned that breath is my best friend and it’s there whenever and wherever I need it. Being a facilitator allows me to love you all with abundance and to feel that we all are one. Breath brings you to love and love is the greatest healing tool that we have. At a time I was so ill that all I had was my breath. Then I learnt how valuable it can be and how we can share this ocean of love inside us if we breathe together.
: As a facilitator I feel that people are really responding to breath like it’s a bridge from the threshold into their inner live and inner world in a way that is so simple and so natural. It’s like a tuning fork to balance oneself. I’ve seen so many people restructure all their lives after exploring Breathwork. They shift their concepts and beliefs structure and tune into something that is freer, happier, healthier and more loving.
: The biggest thing I’ve learned is the humbling truth that I can’t support people in going somewhere I haven’t gone myself. I’ve been confronted with my own closed heart at times and my own perceived inability to feel an entire emotional range because of my childhood. I’ve learned from holding space that I really need to continue always expanding my heart and slowing down to feel what’s inside me, because if I can’t even tune in and really track my own experience, I cannot keep space for other people.
How does breathwork open your heart and how can it be kept open after the session?
: I would ask, “Why do you want to open your heart?” Once you know why you want to the rest is just easy, you just breathe and there it is. It opens to you.
: After many years of practice I still don’t know how it happens. It just does. It is a release of the fear, the trauma, and our vulnerability. Love is always there for us and when you reach it says: here I am, I’ve been waiting for you, welcome home.
: In every group that I’ve been in, you get to see someone’s essence, and you get to see what they’ve been through. We all have been through so much. One of my teachers says: “If you could just sit here and watch a movie of everybody’s life’s and how they have managed to overcome, choosing love and choosing life, we would all be sitting here and watching in an “oh”. When people come to a retreat, my intention is to help them to cultivate what they’ve been through and help them get into their magnificent expression.
: For me being in a group room is like stepping into the field of empathy. And to feel this empathy you need to have your heart open. That’s the natural state for the heart to be in. Everything else that we put in place to keep it protected starts to be removed in a group room, where people drop their protection, drop the defence mechanisms that they created not to feel the pain of separation. When a group of individuals come together for the experience of removing everything that is in the way of keeping this opening of the heart, it’s hard not to get affected by that. The entrainment happens. The energy that’s present in the group is just so powerful and tangible. I feel very lucky to be very often myself in this environment.
: I have to admit that I’m doing my work for myself because when I’m able to show up for another, many times their trauma is also my trauma. It’s easier for me to hold space for their story unfoldin
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