Breathing Underwater Spirituality in 12 Steps

The concept of “breathing underwater” has become a powerful metaphor in recovery circles for the transformative spiritual process of working a twelve step program. Just as learning specialized breathing techniques allows divers to explore mysterious underwater worlds, incorporating spiritual practices into early sobriety unlocks access to deeper aspects of self and higher states of consciousness.

Breathing Underwater & The 12 Steps

In twelve step groups, members often talk about “going deeper” – moving beyond surface-level abstinence into the psychological and spiritual roots of their addiction. This usually requires some form of meditation, self-reflection or breathwork.

Conscious breathing realigns our spirit, mind and body, allowing us to drop out of active thought and into presence. As we gain distance from the egoic chatter of everyday consciousness, truth and insights arise effortlessly from within. This is the “diving below” that enables genuine spiritual progress.

Breathwork For Clarity & Peace of Mind

Many newcomers to recovery struggle with racing thoughts, anxiety and stress. Simple breathing techniques offer relief by activating the parasympathetic nervous system, signaling the brain and body to relax.

Deep belly breaths, alternate nostril breathing and box breathing are easy to learn practices that clear mental clutter. As thoughts slow down, clarity and peace of mind emerge. We can access our deeper wisdom when no longer drowned out by the noise of ego.

Breathing Exercises To Process Emotions

Early recovery often brings up intense and unfamiliar feelings. Addicts tend to suppress emotions with substances – when we get sober, this heavy baggage starts rising to the surface.

Through breathing exercises like breath of fire and structured breathwork sessions, we can learn to move through challenging emotions without becoming overwhelmed. With practice, even the most painful feelings lose their power over us.

The Spiritual Aspects of Breathing Underwater

Breathing is our most basic and vital act – yet happens unconsciously. As we start to breath consciously, subtler realities reveal themselves.

Studies show controlled breathing creates gamma brain waves associated with insight, spatial perception and “eureka” moments. Breathwork also releases alpha waves linked to relaxation and conscious dips into subconscious wisdom.

Breath Consciousness Reconnects Us to Source Energy

Many ancient traditions teach that breath serves as a conduit between individual consciousness and the universal Source. Through profound presence with the breath, mystics achieved transcendental states and glimpsed the eternal realms behind this reality.

Consciously matched with our inhales and exhales, we can sense our essential unity with all existence. Feelings of loneliness and disconnection fade as our breath constantly reaffirms our belonging and Divinity.

Breathing Aligns Our Physical & Energetic Bodies

Experienced yogis and energy healers understand the correlation between optimal breathing patterns and freely flowing energy channels through our subtle anatomy.

When the breath is moving cleanly and prana circulates unobstructed through our chakras, sushumna and meridians – our Divine blueprint integrates without interference. This allows realization of higher states.

Using Breathwork in 12 Step Programs

Twelve step programs urge members to establish a “conscious contact” with a Higher Power of their understanding. No matter what people choose to call this Ultimate Intelligence – God, Universe, Spirit – a strong connection empowers our journeys through sobriety and life.

Breathwork is one powerful practice for consciously bridging human and Divine. Below are some ways it serves recovering addicts.

Accessing Intuitive Inner Guidance

Working with an experienced breathwork facilitator, we can enter expanded states of consciousness and receive messages from our Higher Self or Guides about our path. These can prove invaluable for recovery.

Even self-directed breathwork helps us cut through mental clutter, so we can “hear” the still, small voice of inner wisdom directing our next right action.

Befriending Disowned Parts of Self

Through conscious breathing, many discover disconnected aspects of themselves locked in shadow – abandoned in childhood, deemed unacceptable by family or society. As we extend compassion and forgiveness to these wounded parts, deep healing occurs.

Sudden rushes of emotion may arise in breathwork. If held in safe, loving space these energies can integrate, resolving our inner conflicts. This restores psychic wholeness vital for success in recovery.

Breathing Exercises for Spiritual Growth

Consistent breathwork practiced with presence unveils our true Divine nature, buried beneath layers of trauma and conditioning.

As healing occurs, our natural innocence, creativity, wisdom and compassion emerge. We remember ourselves as Divine creators and take responsibility for consciously shaping our realities.

Discovering Our Highest Potential & Purpose

Sometimes the heaviest baggage dissolves and we’re left with a question – “Who am I without my pain?” At this point, committed spiritual practice reveals our special gifts and higher callings.

Guided meditations and prayer during breathwork connects us to visions of future possibilities, direction for next steps and communities that support our unfoldment.

Becoming a Clear Channel for Grace

With dedicated breath practice, we raise our energetic frequency and increase our capacity to anchor higher vibrational states. As clear, grounded conduits we become powerful healing channels – tools through which Grace and Awakening flow.

In recovery circles this manifests as people discovering their natural abilities as sponsors, therapists or spiritual teachers – able to ignite the Divine spark within others because they have become That themselves.

Twelve step programs urge members towards spiritual progress, not religious dogma. Conscious breathwork provides a simple, accessible bridge to establish and deepen this connection with our Highest Self.

Through breath mastery, we contact sacred inner dimensions vital for overcoming addiction. With consistent practice, universal truths reveal themselves and our alignment with higher levels of reality integrate as direct experience.

Breath consciousness also builds the mental muscles critical for continual growth – present moment focus, self honesty, surrender of ego, acting from inspiration. Integrating these spiritual principles empowers our journeys through recovery and life.