We, the living children of Earth and starry Heaven, are composed of body, mind, and spirit. While we speak of three named components, those are so tightly interdependent as to be inseparable this side of the Veil.
In this excerpt from Israel Regardie, The One Year Manual: Twelve Steps to Spiritual Enlightenment, we are led to explore spiritual growth through mindful practices of body relaxation and breathing, with thanks to the Servants of the Light mystery school for bringing it to our attention.
“ONE OF THE MAJOR GOALS of any system of self-development or spiritual growth is the acquisition of sensitivity or self-awareness. There is only one way of acquiring this awareness — and this is to become aware.
Sitting comfortably in a straight-backed chair, or lying flat on one’s back in bed, one merely attempts to observe what is happening, as it were, “under the skin.” You simply watch your body, its sensations and feeling here and now.
This only — and nothing more. Do not try to relax or to breathe in any unusual or special way, or to try to control the thoughts that float through the mind. All these processes and methods will be dealt with later.
For the time being, merely become conscious of any sensation that arises anywhere in the body. I suggest you wriggle around for a moment or two to find that one position which seems most comfortable. Having found it, stay in it, and do not move from it in any way.
There should be absolutely no voluntary muscular movement for the rest of the practice session. Not even a wriggle of a toe, or a wiggle of a finger.
The session should last not more than ten minutes at first, but gradually by the end of a month should be extended to half an hour. For many people this will seem an eternity in which every instinct will cry aloud for a wiggle of some kind to ease the tension. This should be resisted. Other students will find the ten minutes to pass, as it were, in a flash.