What if Ancient Sangha used Breathing Techniques?

I don’t see nothing in Mindfulness of Breathing which makes you read it as natural breathing. Or is there a word in pali that maybe gives a hint? Because breathing techniques cause DMT in the brain. That’s why I’m thinking Sangha used it while doing mindfulness breathing.

It’s right there: observe what is, long or short. Then move through the sixteen steps. Anapanasati needs to be natural breathing. Breathwork produces an altered state of consciousness not unlike mind altering drugs which deviate from the entire point of Buddhist meditation and miss everything the Buddha taught.


But is there any evidence to compel us to think otherwise? Whether or not it’s explicitly stated that it’s natural breathing, there’s no evidence to the contrary. And there’s definitely no indication that the Sangha was doing a special breathing technique which releases DMT.

Wouldn’t it make most sense to take the simplest explanation until proven otherwise? Because if we don’t, there’s no end to speculation. Those more well-versed in debate will probably probably have something clever to say about proving a negative or the anatomy of reasoning or whatever. But in my lack of such knowledge, I can only point my finger in the general direction of your reasoning, and suggest that it may be overcomplicating things.

With metta,


It seems to me that the simile of the turner in MN 10 is evidence to the contrary. Though it may not be strong enough evidence to compel us to think that the passage is referring to breaths made deliberately long or short, it does seem at least to suggest this:

Just as a skillful turner or turner’s apprentice, making a long turn, is aware, “I am making a long turn,” or making a short turn, is aware, “I am making a short turn,” just so the monk, breathing in a long breath, is aware, “I am breathing in a long breath”; breathing out a long breath, he is aware, “I am breathing out a long breath”; breathing in a short breath, he is aware, “I am breathing in a short breath”; breathing out a short breath, he is aware, “I am breathing out a short breath.”

To me both possibilities seem equally simple.

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I think that sutta seems the closest we can get? Any others.

Why would think that? Because I don’t get altered states if I do it in beginning of my meditation, it actually helps me become more concentrated

Isn’t it illegal to test for DMT in a living human brain? (it is illegal in the USA, but I don’t know the laws of every country)

Is there scientific research about this beyond anecdotal evidence?

It has This is interesting. In the case of Ajahn Lee, the breath has to be made comfortable, and it can be used to achieve such comfort. I suppose this is what that quotation means: as a skilful turner, one used the breath to achieve the wanted work, but whatever breath you are using, short or long, you are fully aware of it. You need lots of mastery to be a skilfull turner, lots of practice, attempts, and find the way that suits your body (they used feet!)
I think Ajahn Thanissaro, which used Ajahn Lee indications, is on this correct.
One point does not contradict the other: finding the best breath for the meditation and be aware of the quality of that breath. :pray:

I was texting my friend about this. And he made me remember when the breathing becomes subtle in meditation. I couldn’t remember before because after my stroke I didn’t practice until it became subtle. But before I did. So I remember now. And yes. There is the need of playing with the breath. It’s fun also. Before it becomes subtle you can play with the breath to feel rapture.

Breathing technique where you breathe heavily would only be useful immediately when you start.

I mean how can you breathe heavy after getting calm :joy:

No study ofcourse. But we assume. Because something happens in the brain :joy: My apologies. But try some on YouTube. Just becareful.

Participants are reminded that:

From our guide to the guidelines and FAQ:

While I have the Paṭisambhidāmagga on my brain…the Ānāpānassatikathā of the Paṭisambhidāmagga describes the impurities of breathing meditation in the upakkilesañāṇaniddeso.

Such conduct of craving as longing for, that is to say, wishing for gross in-breath is
hindrance to the concentration.

Such conduct of craving as longing for, that is to say, wishing for gross out-breath is
hindrance to the concentration.

So there is no-where in the canon which says a particular type of breath should be sought for, and at least one place in the canon which says it definitely shouldn’t be. :thinking:


Ok. I didn’t know I couldn’t mention my health also. But I didn’t mention any attainments truly. Nothing special. I understood how far I can go now. Only talk about the attainments of diciples in EBT.

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Oh I see. I truly understand now. Thank you. :pray:t4: But then again laypersons practice different.