Yoga places a lot of importance on the breath – so too, in wall construction. While stones themselves don’t inhale or exhale, walls – (especially retaining walls) actually need to be able to breathe.
A stone wall made with cement or concrete can’t breathe. It can’t move. Any moisture trapped behind it in the soil can’t get out. Eventually it will tip and crack and start to fall over.
But a well built dry laid stone wall can expand and contract slightly, like a basket, and in a very real sense ‘breathes’ to accommodate changes in temperature and hydrostatic movement in the soil.