Throughout history, the subject of breath has held special significance in philosophy, religion, mythology and literature.


Take a step back in time to the civilisation of Ancient Egypt and breath was inextricably associated with the concept of the 'soul'. The Egyptians believed this was composed of several parts, the 'Ka' or breath, which continued after death and remained in proximity to the earthly body , while another part commenced it spiritual journey. In Christianity, the first book of the Bible, Genesis, speaks of the 'breath of life', while in Hinduism, 'Atman' comes from Sanskrit meaning 'essence' or 'breath' .

Our sense of smell is extremely clever and is able to evoke its own form of déjà vu. Smells are very evocative and often we may have completely forgotten an event but a faint aroma transports our thoughts and brings a memory back instantly. It may be a washing line full of fresh laundry taking you back to your grandmother's scullery, a wood full of bluebells reminding you of your first love or the stench of a tyre factory transporting you back to your university town. A few airborne molecules can trigger vivid recollections that can be very powerful.