2

Is it better to just watch the breath as it unfolds or sometimes we need to control it to slow it down ,calming down and noticing it in the same time ?.

3

Calm down the mind - breath is indicator of mind state.

https://plumvillage.org/sutra/discourse-on-the-full-awareness-of-breathing/

  1. ‘Breathing in a long breath, I know I am breathing in a long breath. Breathing out a long breath, I know I am breathing out a long breath.

  2. ‘Breathing in a short breath, I know I am breathing in a short breath. Breathing out a short breath, I know I am breathing out a short breath.

  3. ‘Breathing in, I am aware of my whole body. Breathing out, I am aware of my whole body.’ He or she practices like this.

  4. ‘Breathing in, I calm my whole body. Breathing out, I calm my whole body.’ He or she practices like this.

  5. ‘Breathing in, I feel joyful. Breathing out, I feel joyful.’ He or she practices like this.

  6. ‘Breathing in, I feel happy. Breathing out, I feel happy.’ He or she practices like this.

  7. ‘Breathing in, I am aware of my mental formations. Breathing out, I am aware of my mental formations.’ He or she practices like this.

  8. ‘Breathing in, I calm my mental formations. Breathing out, I calm my mental formations.’ He or she practices like this.

  9. ‘Breathing in, I am aware of my mind. Breathing out, I am aware of my mind.’ He or she practices like this.

  10. ‘Breathing in, I make my mind happy. Breathing out, I make my mind happy.’ He or she practices like this.

  11. ‘Breathing in, I concentrate my mind. Breathing out, I concentrate my mind.’ He or she practices like this.

  12. ‘Breathing in, I liberate my mind. Breathing out, I liberate my mind.’ He or she practices like this.

2

For people with 'monkey-mind', often controlling the breath for a period may be beneficial to help the mind calm down. However, true Buddhist meditation is merely allowing the mind to watch the breath because Buddhist practise is actually not really related to watching breath per se but is about keeping the mind free from unwholesomeness.

The only reason watching breath is mentioned in Buddhism is because a pure mind without any unwholesomeness automatically watches the breath.

As for Pranayama, this can harm the body & mind if done incorrectly:

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0

Satipatthana doesn't any relation to breath. This path is for further perfection towards Arhatship. But Nirvana is achieved before that. Sati doesn't mean breath but awareness in detached form. With eyes of wisdom having detached from inside keeps his awareness there, as it the practitioner turn into that. By keeping this awareness daily in life while walking, sitting, doing something he is detached in every respect. That's the eight fold path. Samma ditthi means insight of thou and that awarenes become one. Samma vaca means that you are talking wholesome with united detached awareness. So also other Samma steps and finally Samma Samadhi. Samma samadhi is the end where previously you perceive as detached awareness, you become that. You crossed from this shore of body to other shore of formless spot. You are embodied. Then one realised his past lives, how karma operating living beings by seeing three realms of heaven, earth and hell and know the four noble truth. Then only he is termed as Arhat. This state is hard to attain without bounty of wholesome deeds. The awareness in satipatthana can be termed as God watching you and all your actions. If you commit misdeeds you bound to repay. How can if one know He is watching, commit misdeeds? Hence five percepts are gem for householder and eight for that of monks. Do good deeds. That's the main motto. Just meditation can't remove your suffering.

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