Just a day later, breathing exercises are my favorite! ;-) Well, not canned formulas, and really there's just one exercise as I'm conceiving it: actively experiment with breathing, in connection to the energy from above. Don't wait to identify whether to breathe in or out; just start. If it helps to keep from going off track, make shorter, even rapid breaths. By "on track," I mean simultaneously feeling the energy above and the energy below without holding the breath. In other words, keeping the hose connected and air moving through it, regardless of the rhythm. I suspect I can make a habit out of this, and that the rhythms and tempos will become more natural. They're awkward at first, but they're fast becoming easier and more natural.
It indeed feels like the breath is a pumping mechanism to fill the body with life energy. It's a denser sensation; I can feel the channels as if I'm working the air, for example, up and down my spine, right now in deliberate, even breaths. The pumping sensation is not just on the inhalations. If I'm maintaining the connection to the energy above, it seems like both inhaling and exhaling infuse the body with more energy, like a constant electrical connection.
The breath seems like my key to the assertion of the physical. The active willing to breathe is the body taking what it needs from the energy above, pulling it down, rather than just lying and waiting to be overtaken by higher forces.