Breathing the Air in Spain

Breathing the Air in Spain 

We began the international part of the Do As One tour in Madrid, Spain and were excited beyond our jet lag.  International One Day Ambassador, Jenna Grayson speaks Spanish rather well and so we had no issues getting around and mingling with the locals so as to find our way into the adventure we set out to create.  An interesting thing was happening to us.  Everything we would ask for would show up as we expected it, but at the same time we found ourselves learning a process.

The process of how to enter a country, authentically connect with the people, speak the language, find our way around intelligently and use their currency.  These were all elements that would have to be quickly taken on and owned for us to be successful in portraying the vision of One Day to people worldwide.

Madrid was our classroom and attending class on jet lag was borderline delirious but we were up for the challenge.  The conscious breath reveals things to us in our visual spectrum as we walk around our daily life.  The level of presence and awareness brings moments that are even fun to just notice.

[Take a sweet, conscious breath]

Our Spain stop was one of the places that we did not have workshops planned nor were we visiting a festival or anyone in particular.  So we relied on trust and as we did, we found ourselves connecting intimately with beautiful people.  The old city of Madrid was such a melting pot and as one of the locals shared, “We have no problems between people of all races in this part of town.  We live together, party together and find our way together because we are all in a similar struggle.”  He remarked that in the big cities you could see the modernization of industrialization but in the smaller towns and outskirts, the village and community life of old still worked and people thrived…together.

We decided to visit the local yoga community and to ask them to join us on 11/11 for the One Day celebration happening worldwide.  Many of our efforts led to just being able to contact the yoga studio owner by phone or email.  But some of our interactions were simple, loving connections beyond the vision we were bringing.  Being so welcomed by people felt so good in our hearts.  The manager of an old book shop was so delighted by our vision and was willing to share some of his thoughts on video:

We had never had Senegalese food and had run into a seemingly popular place in an African part of town so we decided to give it a try.  The African people in and around the spot were so colorful and full of life, that we found ourselves wanting to share our vision. The African accent in Spanish left us wanting to share with someone in English and hence we were led to a pub called, La Grandola, where an English speaking man from Burkina Faso and his friends were ready to receive us.


As we walked into La Grandola, we saw that the walls were lined with pictures of all the revolutionaries of history worldwide.  Pictures of Che Guevera, Fidel Castro, Bobby Sands, Bob Marley and more. We received a simple statement about the power of breathing together:

After making friends with Adama, the pub owner, I found that I wanted to ask him about his revolutionary flair.  He shared that he felt that our vision was an interesting version of revolution but in a peaceful way.  This is when I was to receive the meaning of La Grandola and why he named the place after a moment in history.  Adama told me that La Grandola was one of the only non-violent revolutions in all of written history.  The people of Portugal united in 1974 and created something so beautiful that it brought me to tears.  They chose to unite in the town squares with a cross-section of all the people in their society as opposed to just having adult rebels on the scene.  They gathered children, mothers, fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers and they all came to the square with one flower each.  When the army arrived and took out their guns, the people took out their flowers and stuck them down the barrel of each gun.  This equalizer, this non-violent representation of humanity and this loving gesture extinguished the fire of these army men and a non-violent stand for unity was victorious.  It was beautiful to know this about the people of historic Portugal as I knew we would be stopping there later in the tour.

As we walked the streets of Spain, breathing consciously, little signs popped out at us that reminded us that we are in exactly the right place.  The word PAZ is the Spanish word for peace and historically this word existed first in Latin as PAX.  It first surfaced in humanity in the Christian church and was a keyword in the liturgy way back in the year 300 A.D. It was part of a ritual called, conspiratio (It is also where we got the word ‘conspire’ which originally meant to breathe together.) in which the people shared the kiss of peace.  This was a moment where they shared breaths and validated that they were ‘One in Spirit’.  Today this moment still exists in the church.  It is the moment in the Catholic Church and other sects in which people turn around and shake hands saying, “Peace be with you.”  That is the exact moment when the people used to breathe together it as just reduced to a handshake and a word over time.

The words PAZ stood out in graffiti to remind us that we were in the right place and that peace was in our steps and our breaths as we laid the groundwork for this
Do As One tour of many wonders:

A picture with our new Ambassador of Breath, Manuel Atienza in Spain.  He will be influencing events in his part of the world for One Day.

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Silence for World Peace

The Moment of Peace, MedMob & Do As One Unite on March 10, 2012

A silent global phenomenon is occurring. On March 10th, tens of thousands of people, in over 300 cities around the world are joining together for an hour of silence to cultivate peace and harmony for humanity.  People from all backgrounds, ages and beliefs will join in.

The Moment of Peace, MedMob and Do As One, three uniquely uplifting organizations, have linked up to inspire people from around the world to unite.  Collectively, “Together As One” is their theme.  The message is simple; take a moment and appreciate silence in order to expand peace with each other and from within.

Participants in Jerusalem, Austin, Sydney, Paris, Mumbai, London, New York, Los Angeles, and many more are organizing public outdoor meditations in the heart of their cities to anchor peace and invoke a spirit of togetherness. It is set to be the biggest gathering of its kind in history.

“Some people are afraid to look at each other and smile these days. We aren’t as connected as we could be.” said Dean Crabb, founder of The Moment of Peace. “We are doing something about it and giving people a way to start truly living together.”

Technology has been the enabling factor that has empowered an explosion and collaboration of movements geared towards peace.  Jaime Collaco from Do As One noted, “We’re excited that we’ve aligned with transformative organizations such as The Moment of Peace and MedMob. As we celebrate The Moment of Peace together, we have the opportunity to connect in silence, in meditation and in synchronous breath thanks to technology.

“We are in a unique time in history and the Internet is enabling this unprecedented event to occur,” said Patrick Kronfli, co-founder of MedMob. “About 70 of us started MedMob in January, 2011 at the Texas State Capitol in Austin and now, one year later, the movement has spread to hundreds of cities around the world.”

The Moment of Peace is an annual global event for an hour of silence and meditation – it occurs again on Saturday, March 10th 2012.  There will be two waves of silence held throughout the day, one from Noon to 1PM and another from 8PM to 9PM in your own local time-zone.  Celebrations are set to kick off on March 9th with the King David Peace Drummers igniting a drumming circle for peace in the heart of Jerusalem.

The event is completely free and open to all people from all walks of life. Group events can be found by going to MedMob.org & TheMomentOfPeace.com, and you can synchronize your breath all day in the Universal Breathing Room on DoAsOne.org.

MedMob holds similar hourly flash mob meditation events every month around the world and offers people the ability to participate more regularly.  Do As One provides an online portal where people come together to meditate and breathe in sync as one during these events and around the clock everyday.

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Forbes article on Do As One

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Why Breathe Consciously?

Why Breathe Consciously?

By the time you read this sentence, one breath of your life will have gone by.  We so often take it for granted but it is amazing to realize that every single person in the world breathes and that they are breathing in every moment of their lives.  It is also quite astounding that the breath can be taken automatically and without any thought or effort whatsoever.  Yet it can be breathed consciously, in which one can take control of the speed and depth of the breath at will. This is evidence that there is a hidden power in the breath, simply because this automatic process can be done consciously.  Thousands of years of human study in the ancient arts of qi gong, tai chi, yoga and pranayama have shown the massive healing and generative powers available in our breath.  The true gift in breathing consciously is that the breath is always in the present, in essence, when you breathe consciously you are gifted immediate contact with the present moment.

We will never take a future or a past breath.  With this in mind, when we breathe consciously we are accessing the present moment, guaranteed!  This is why the doorway to meditation is conscious breathing.  So many meditation techniques begin by focusing on the breath so as to bring the person into the now.  The eternal now, which is always happening and always unveiling itself, is therefore best accessed by turning to the breath.  If this great power has been there all along, why don’t people access it more often?  Today’s fast-paced societies have created such a sporadic rhythm to life that humanity, in many ways has become out of touch with nature and therefore out of touch with its own nature.  How often are our minds on memories of the past or on future hopes, goals or concerns?  How often are we thinking about what we think about life and not actually living it, not actually feeling the moment at hand.

Both the stressed out stock-broker, the speedy parent and the writer-blocked author would all be amazed at what breathing consciously can do with the ways in which they plug-in to life itself, every day, every minute, every single breath.  It is instantly available and we already have everything we need to do it.  The now, is outside of language, in other words as soon as we say the word now, it just went by.  When we become still and simply follow the movement of the breath in and out, we have just accessed the place from which all of creation has ever sprung forth into existence.  It is the place where every painting that was ever painted happened, the space into which every musical note that was ever played or sung was played.  The conscious breath is the home for absolute being.  It was so well spoken by one of our advisors and dear teachers, Reverend Dr. Michael Bernard Beckwith when he shared this:

“When is the most important time?  The most important time is now.  Now that’s a breakthrough in consciousness because the average individual is not walking in now, the average individual is walking lock-step with the past or is hell-bent for some future that they have projected onto the unknown and call it a future and no one is really here now. You talk to people and they are somewhere else, they’re on the way to somewhere else or they’re coming from somewhere else. They’re everywhere but here, they’re everywhere but now.  This is a breakthrough in consciousness, when you can stop and take a breath and actually be now, and actually be in the moment – where all the power is and all the intelligence is and all of the love is and all of the guidance is.  The future does not exist.”

So are you ready?  With excellent posture, exhale the air from your lungs. Close your mouth and allow the air to move in and out through your nose, allowing the natural pauses between each breath.  Enjoy your breath flow, consciously for one minute.  Now, may never be the same again.

For more guidance and tools on deep breathing exercises, please use DoAsOne.org.

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