Is focusing on your breathing to meditate banned in the Orthodox church, in particular the Serbian Orthodox church? I know that it's not allowed to not focus on anything at all, because the devil will enter the mind in such cases. However what if I just focused on my breathing instead, and in case that it's not allowed either, is there an Orthodox alternative to it, which gives the same or better benefits?
Being Eastern Catholic, I’d say you need to be aware that because of the similarities between some eastern spiritual practices and the practices of the orthodox there is sensitivity amongst the Eastern churches of west’s accusations that we engage in pagan meditation techniques.
I think we need to get over our hang ups with the west’s accusations.
Our traditions; including the Jesus prayer is built around the breath.
As long as you remain theologically sound, practice mindfulness as you will.