Breathing Meditation to Shell and Lotus Shaped Mancerina

What art offers is space–a certain breathing room for the spirit.

John Updike, American Novelist
A small, ornately decorated plate shaped like a shell and a lotus with a raised ring in the center
Unknown Chinese; Shell and Lotus Shaped Mancerina, ca. 1730; Carnegie Museum of Art: Gift of Mrs. Thomas Childs Wurts

Enjoy this guided breathing meditation paired with Shell and Lotus Shaped Mancerina. Follow along with the audio or text below.

Step-by-Step Meditation

Listen to meditation on emotion:

  1. Take a few moments to look at this work in porcelain.
  2. Bring your attention to the scalloped edge. Slowly move your gaze along the entirety of the edge.
  3. Shift your attention to the innermost white bowl shape. Follow the edge stopping at each point until you reach the point where you began.
  4. Now bring your attention to the alternating red and white strips of color.
  5. Inhale beginning with the smallest area of white at either the left or right lower portion of the shape, then exhale on the next strip of red. Continue to coordinate your breath with the alternating colors as you move your gaze around the bowl.
  6. Move around the entire shape for as long as you like as you sync breath and thought to calm the mind.