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Is meditating observing breathe?

We see many defining meditation as the process of observing/concentrating breathe. According to experts in the related field, concentrating on air flow may, in fact, lead to negative effects most of the times, as air, apart from good, also contains other particulate matter, which might be harmful. So, concentrating on negative things might result in negative. Instead, the real method would be concentrating on ‘atman’. Again a hurdle, as ‘atman’/Prana inside, which is not visible/can’t be felt, immediately upon closing eyes. So, we will need a medium, which is ‘Japa’, a meditative repetition of name/some mantra (suggested by guru) or just the supreme sound, ‘Aum’, which is a matrix of all sounds. Meditating on the same takes you into deep Trans, where you feel the inner ‘atman’.