About Breathing Journeys
John Paul Mason - Founder and Breathwork Facilitator
Breathing Journeys was founded in 2014 by John Paul Mason from Edinburgh, Scotland. His principal aim in founding the organisation was to provide a simple, accessible and directly applicable format for spiritual practice that has practical benefit and relevance to people’s daily lives.
This idea was gradually formulated after many years of exploring various forms of spiritual development, while searching for solutions to his own struggles. This included a long history of meditation practice which began aged 15. A period of significant personal upheaval and the obvious need to do things differently in his life led him to Breathwork in 2008. This led to an accelerated period of learning and growth and rapid personal change, with breathwork becoming the modality of choice for his own ongoing learning and spiritual development.
“I was meditating for years but there always seemed to be a split between spiritual practice and the reality of everyday existence. Breathwork enabled me to bridge that gap. There is no need to “go on retreat” – my everyday life is where it all happens.”
Breathing Journeys is the culmination of 5 years of intense spiritual exploration. It is our deepest heartfelt wish that those who partake in our programmes find answers to the questions that drive them deeper into life.
Breathing Journeys is a ‘more than profit’ organisation which facilitates spiritual journeys using the breath. We do this through a range of programmes that allow individuals an experience of spiritual reality within the context of their own beliefs. At the heart of our ethos is a deeply held desire for spiritual awakening as a practical reality which then informs our actions throughout all aspects of our lives.
We do not profess to being in any way more informed on matters of spirit than any other system, however we do believe that breathing in the way that we promote offers a highly effective, safe and self empowering methodology for individuals to grow spiritually and flourish in all aspects of their lives. It is also highly accessible. We believe that spiritual connection is not only an aspiration but a daily physical reality. In many cultures the word for soul or spirit is the same as the word for breath. We are literally breathing spirit every second of our waking lives. When we learn how to harness this connection we step onto the pathway of self awareness, self love and self mastery, guided by grace. When rooted in everyday life, application of spiritual awareness allows our highest intentions for ourselves to be made manifest in ways that we could never imagine.
Breathwork is a simple breathing methodology that moves increased amounts of spiritual energy through your system. It was pioneered by Leonard Orr in the U.S.A the 1970’s and has since been developed through various different schools around the world. These include Shamanic Breathwork, Clarity Breathwork, Liberation Breathwork and Integrative Breathwork amongst others in addition to Leonard Orr's original Rebirthing, At the heart of all approaches is a way of breathing known as “Conscious Connected Breathing”.
Experiencing breathwork normally involves lying down and breathing in a specific way for around one hour. The breath is relaxed with no pause between the inhale and the exhale. This way of breathing induces a state of deep relaxation where one then “journeys” with the breath. During a breathing journey one may experience a range of thoughts, feelings and sensations that lead to some aspect of your experience having “shifted”. The positive change that is experienced in a breath session is then reflected in your life. As one proceeds with the practice, spiritual awareness is gained through repeated experience with the process and the impact it has on your way of understanding and embodying the spiritual life.
Our programmes offer an opportunity for both individuals and organisations to engage in a process of enquiry, re-evaluation and becoming. We offer a wide range of programmes varying from one day workshops and short seminars to weekend or week long group experiences. Programmes can be in house or fully residential at secluded and highly prized locations chosen to suit the restful and regenerative nature of our programmes.
Our focus is on a relaxed approach to personal discovery and providing an enjoyable and rich experience, with the natural environment, the programme and the Breathing Journeys team all combining to support you in achieving what you want from your experience with us. Our aim is to provide you with an exceptional experience, for you to discover your own sense of connection to whatever aspect of life you understand as spirit.
All our programmes are facilitated by a highly experienced team of professional and fully trained experts in their chosen disciplines. From the cook to the programme leader, all bring a willingness to share their experience and support you in your journey with us.
John Paul Mason - Founder and Breathwork Facilitator
John Paul brings to Breathing Journeys his own multifaceted abilities and clarity developed through years of experience in a diverse range of disciplines. He has extensive breathwork training gained with various UK and international teachers, including the Avalon Institute of Rebirthing in Devon, with whom he received a Diploma, Zentium International from Australia and Sundoor International from the USA. He also trained in aura diagnosis and is a qualified Reiki Master. He has experience in groupwork, having trained for a year with the Institute of Group Analysis in the UK and has undergone training in group practice and ritual with, among others, Joanne Macy, Green Activist from the United States of America.
Prior to founding Breathing Journeys, his previous working life included environmental consultancy, outdoor leadership, performing and tour guiding throughout the Highlands of Scotland. He previously co-ran ‘Walkabout Scotland’, a mountain walking and tour company, leading others into the Scottish Highlands and celebrating the beauty of Scotland. He is an experienced mountain man and guide, initiating others into the beauty of the Highland backdrop where he now resides and practices. John Paul connects readily with the environment and natural world around us, which brings immediacy to his practise and enables connection with the here and now of everyday life. He shares through his work these collective skills and experience.
“John Paul is an intuitive and highly skilled practitioner, having done extensive training and personal development with breathwork over the last 5 years. His sensitive and heart-centred approach provide the basis for creating a safe and compassionate space for exploration, healing and growth.” Liz Pawley, Breathwork Coach, 2013
John Paul currently resides in Comrie in Perthshire, Scotland with his wife and her two children.
We endeavour to ensure that all relationships throughout our business should be win win. This includes ourselves as a profit making organisation, our clients, our staff, our suppliers and the environment. To this end the following statements hold true:
We run our organisation as a profit making enterprise to ensure long term sustainability and personal wellbeing for those involved. We encourage creativity, co-operation and imagination to keep our organisation alive and thriving.
We honour our clients and provide them with true and accurate information about our programmes to enable them to make informed decisions regarding their participation. We communicate alterations to programmes as necessary and in full communication with participants. We offer a full moneyback guarantee to any of our clients who are unsatisfied with their experience while attending one of our programmes.
We pay our staff a fair fee for their time and treat them with honesty, integrity and respect. We allow those who work for and with us to express themselves and their opinions regarding the ongoing journey of our organisation to create a working environment that is supportive and which encourages participation.
Since many of our programmes are held and rooted in places of great inspiration scenically, an integral part of our working ethos is creating a sacred space and honouring the land around us. For us this includes giving thanks, minimising disturbance, encouraging relationship to the natural world and doing what we can to reduce our environmental footprint. We believe passionately in the rights of all other forms of life to share the places we inhabit and place ourselves no higher than any other of the myriad forms of that which we call creation.
Specific practical strategies to help us align with this policy include:
- Holding programmes in places with good access by public transport
- Imparting information about the local area to encourage a sense of place
- Creating programmes which allow for time to connect with the natural environment
- Offsetting all our carbon emissions through investment in natural woodland regeneration within Scotland
- Engaging with local sustainability initiatives and efforts to reimagine ways in which we live and work
- Using local, organic produce wherever possible as a priority for all our in house programmes
In addition to the above we commit to providing at least one bursary place within each of our programmes for those with the desire to attend but with a need for financial assistance.