The Breath of God in the Old and New Testament

The Miracle of the Breath
"The link between Spirit and Breath is mentioned throughout the Bible, yet most modern-day Jews and Christians are unaware of this relationship. For example, the ancient Hebrew word ruah not only meant 'spirit,' 'breath,' and 'wind'; it was also used in essentially the same ways as the Greeks, Hindus, and Romans used the words pneuma, prana and spiritus. The ancient Hebrew scribes often linked the word ruah with Yahweh (the name of the God of Israel). Thus, the term ruah Yahweh, which appears often in the Old Testament, can be translated to mean 'the spirit of God,' 'the breath of God,' or 'the wind of God' (God's breath manifested as wind).

In the New Testament, all references to God's spirit, breath, or wind appear as the word pneuma, instead of ruah, because the Gospels were originally written in Greek. In John 3:8 (AV), for example, Jesus appears to be speaking in riddles when he says to the bewildered Nicodemus:

The wind [pneuma] blows where it wills, and you can hear the sound it makes, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of spirit [pneuma]."

Andy Caponigro, The Miracle of the Breath
New World Library (2005) p. 9-11

The Light of the Koran
"But what is meant by the term 'Self-realisation', which many traditions also call 'second birth'? A subtle mechanism inside each human being watches over a latent spiritual energy, located in the sacrum at the base of the spinal column. This energy, known as 'Kundalini' in Sanskrit (from 'kundala' meaning 'spiral'), is the reflection, within each of us, of the 'primordial Energy' - in other words the 'breath of God'. As famous as it is mysterious, this is the energy which created the universe and which Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi is able to awaken in all those who desire the knowledge of their true Self, of their role and their place in the play of the universe. In a very simple, natural and harmless manner, as we shall see further on, man gains access to a higher state of consciousness, previously the privilege of only a handful of saints during the course of history. This divine Energy, known to the Holy Scriptures, created the oceans, the mountains and every form of live on Earth. It has now become possible to feel it on the human nervous system. The sincere individual in search of the Absolute is given the possibility, in these troubled yet special times, to witness his own real transformation, thanks to the tangible experience of the 'Breath' on the palms of the hands. Self-realisation is therefore the awakening of the reflection of the Primordial Energy within man, which grants him his connection with the Universal Spirit. It is the final stage in the destiny of mankind announced by all the prophets.”

Flore Descieux, The Light of the Koran
Ritana Books, New Delhi, India 1995, pg. 35

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