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How to meditate - Stories relating to the practice of meditation.

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Meditation Related on Reddit

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During Meditation

I am not good at english so I used Chatgpt to correct sentences and grammar.

I began meditating around 3-4 years ago, and during that time, I had some profound experiences. Though I can't vividly recall them now, they left a lasting impression. Unfortunately, I hit a point where I missed several days of meditation. When I tried to get back into it, I struggled to reach the same level of depth, and the clarity of my experiences seemed to fade.

During those days, I was smoking a lot and lacked a routine, often finding myself on a marijuana trip. Despite being aware of meditation's importance, I took it for granted. Concepts like chakras, karma, ego death, and the third eye intrigued me, but I remained ignorant.

Now at 26, I've encountered many challenging days – not necessarily life-threatening, but they involved career setbacks, stress, and bouts of depression. To cope with these challenges, I've been meditating on and off. In the past six days, I've rekindled my meditation practice, and I consistently experience something during these sessions. However, I tend to forget the blissful moments and the feeling of ecstasy shortly after they occur.

I'm curious if others have a similar experience, as I know everyone's meditation journey is unique. Some may not even remember their experiences upon exiting this state of mindfulness.

My meditation routine usually starts in the morning. I employ specific breathing techniques, close my eyes, and focus on my chosen mantra. After a while, I begin to sense various phenomena. Typically, I use a mudra where my thumb touches my index finger. Until I reach a state where my body operates on autopilot, I must consciously maintain this finger connection. After several minutes, I naturally transition into a deeper state where everything happens effortlessly, and my fingers remain intertwined.

Initially, I often experience discomfort in my back and sometimes in my legs due to the specific mudra I use. However, as I delve deeper into meditation, these sensations dissipate, and I lose awareness of my physical body, which is not a negative sensation. Suddenly, it feels as though a weight has been lifted from my shoulders. My consciousness seems to travel freely throughout my body, leading to various sensations and experiences.

After completing my meditation session, I may feel some residual discomfort in my back. Still, I carry a sense of renewed energy with me throughout the day and often have experiences similar to those of others who practice meditation.

I'm eager to share these experiences with others because it seems that very few people discuss about what they feel during meditation. I encourage you to share your own experiences as well. Usually people share after mediation experiences.

16:48 UTC


Open awareness: Questions!

Please, answer as many questions as you’d like. Thank you for helping me grasp meditation concepts.

  1. What is open awareness, and how does it differ from focused attention?
  2. How can one cultivate open awareness in their daily life/meditation?
  3. Are there any specific techniques or exercises to develop open awareness?
  4. What role does sensory perception and body sensations play in open awareness?
  5. Are there different levels or stages of proficiency in open awareness, and how can one progress through them?
1 Comment
16:41 UTC


Creative visualization and meditation

What are your thoughts on creative visualization do you practice it and if you do, is it more potent for you doing it after meditation and would you please share a positive creative visualization of yours?

16:16 UTC


Using breathing excercises to reduce anxiety or just let it be?

So I've recently been having some increased and intense anxiety because of a new job.

I've experimented with using breath to relax the body, specifically techniques such as double inhale and long exhale, which do work to reduce the physical symptoms of it. However it's not permanent, nor do I expect it to be.

However in terms of mindfulness and being present with my anxiety, would it be better to just learn to be with the uncomfortable sensations such as tight chest, restlessness, racing thoughts. Almost using it as my object of focus. I've tried this yet it's so easy to be pulled away into overthinking and I realize that it only urges me to seek distraction. I also notice that it almost intensifies the experience of anxiety making it that much more uncomfortable by being hyper aware of it.

I'd love to hear some thoughts, as I've been currently struggling and unsure if I should just keep doing what I'm doing, trust that it's part of the process of processing my anxiety, like processing difficult emotions.

16:07 UTC


Difference between 'steam of consciousness' and 'directed thought'?

I know I didn't use the right phrases in my title, but I'm hoping I can get some feedback I had with a different form of meditation I practiced today.

Typically I do what most people in the west would call the basic mindfulness meditation. Sit with your eyes closed, focus on the breath, note when you get distracted, gently bring focus back to your anchor. Like pretty much everyone, I can struggle with random thoughts and stories taking me on far away journeys when I meditate.

Today I tried a slightly different way after reading the book 'How to Meditate: A Practical Guide to Making Friends with Your Mind' by Pema Chödrön. The big difference is she recommends practicing with open eyes.

So when I meditated using the open eye method today, the only thoughts that came into my head were the internal notes I was purposely giving myself (i.e. breathing in, breathing out, I feel my feet on the floor, buzzing in my arms). There wasn't the typical stories or visual imagery I usually get when I meditate with my eyes closed. I understand most of that is caused by a trick I actually read on here, where if you focus more on your peripheral vision, you don't think as much.

I understand that a lot of meditating is realizing the constant thoughts and stories you tell yourself are not 'you' (i.e. what I am the witness to, I cannot be). But what about the thoughts you think of on purpose? Like the mental noting I described when I'm meditating. I'm just wondering if that type of 'thinking' is different than the random steam of consciousness we normally experience during meditation? It feels like the one kind is purposeful and done consciously and the other is much more random and what most people (including myself) struggle with. I find it interesting how that seemed to disappear more when I mediated with my eyes open.

Does anyone have any thoughts on this??

15:56 UTC


How do you meditate during tough times?

When I started meditating everything was fine and practicing did not cause any major emotional discomfort. Now really hard events are hitting me from everywhere, I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been and extremely anxious about the future. I’ve always thought life was meaningless, but the misery of this statement came only now and I don’t see reasons to keep going anymore. Meditating only makes things better for the few minutes I sit, but then I’m more aware of thoughts and problems I ignored before. I feel so much friction meditating, because I know it will make me feel worse.

Have you ever meditated while experienced tough times? How did you managed it?

Thanks for your help

15:11 UTC


How to properly meditate with non-guided meditation. I'm really confused here!

I find myself facing a delightful conundrum when it comes to unguided meditation. Having completed the 28-day introductory course on the Waking Up App, I've delved into Sam Harris's meditation methods. His approach is beautifully simple yet profound: gently direct your attention to your breath, the sensations in your body, or the ambient sounds around you. When thoughts, emotions, or images emerge, observe them without judgment or analysis. As they naturally dissipate, bring your focus back to your chosen anchor. Sam also suggests periodically shifting your focal point—perhaps spending segments of time noticing your breath, body sensations, and sounds. The precise duration isn't rigid, but the idea remains consistent.

However, my journey also led me to Diana Winston's Spectrum of Awareness course, which presents a similar approach with intriguing nuances. Diana offers various techniques that align with Sam Harris's principles, yet they introduce distinct flavors of mindfulness. For instance, one technique involves labeling distractions with key words like "thinking," "wandering," or "worrying" in your mind before returning to your original point of focus. Another method encourages beginning with one focal point, such as the breath, and observing any distractions until they naturally fade away, before returning to the breath. She even introduces expanding awareness to observe whatever arises.

So, in the realm of unguided meditation, a pleasant puzzle arises:

Should I allocate dedicated time to exploring the breath, body sensations, and sounds sequentially, as Sam Harris suggests, or should I intertwine these experiences with Diana Winston's techniques that also involve focal points, albeit with subtle variations?

14:16 UTC


Discomfort during meditation

How do you deal with discomfort when meditating?

I find, particularly during long sits, that I have a strong urge to stop or change my position as I find it uncomfortable. Sometimes I give in and adjust or change my position, or even stop the meditation entirely.

I’m guessing part of this is also boredom and a desire to run away from what’s coming up/sit with the feeling and discomfort.

I’m guessing the answer is to surrender, go deeper, sit with it and keep focusing on the breath. But I find the urges very distracting

14:12 UTC


Can meditation help with memory?

Ive just started getting into regular meditation and it’s definitely helping me slow down and calm my mind a lot with adhd its been a huge help even with little work so far. I feel like meditation comes somewhat easy to me but is also very difficult which is fun.

A big thing im noticing lately however is my working memory is not that great and i was curious if meditation helps with memory or has helped with yours?

12:59 UTC


What does the English word Meditation mean to you?

For example, in Hinduism, they talk about Dhyana and Samadhi (and various stages of Samadhi) which have distinctive features. While the word meditation seems very subjective and people have different interpretations of Meditation. Is there an English root to it corresponding to a technique or a method, or has it merely been used for the lack of a better word by people to convey different ideas to western cultures who wanted to promote their religion/spirituality?

12:06 UTC


Can you see actual things when meditating?

My therapist recently put me in hypnosis and and asked me to imagine a beautiful place with steps. Are you supposed to actually see this place in your mind with your eyes closed because all I ever see is just black? I

10:51 UTC


I wonder what my next thought will be...

I came across a short reel video on Facebook, suggesting a method to quickly quiet our thoughts. The approach involves taking 2-3 deep breaths, letting the breath fill our belly, and exhaling through the mouth. Following this, we turn our attention to being aware of our mind generating thoughts, even when we actively try to stop them. Instead of attempting to forcefully halt the thoughts, we gently inquire within, saying, 'I wonder what my next thought will be...' I tried it and was amazed by the results. It might be worth giving it a try yourself.

1 Comment
10:22 UTC


I discovered a Kundalini meditation by accident.


This right here I did without even knowing about this video.

My body just knew to dance like this. Did it automatically when playing music, and still does.

10:12 UTC


Has anyone ever practiced Constant Breath Awareness ?

Recently I came across a video on Youtube which mentioned this concept of being aware of your breath throughout the day. According to what I understood from that Video , it is some form of mindfulness exercise. It seems to me a bit too extreme. Has anyone tried it ? would love to hear your experiences ! Thank you in Advance ! Any Video/Book recommendation on this subject are also welcomed !

09:55 UTC


Yogic Techniques for Transmuting Sexual Energy?

I am intending to pursue an extended period of time in celibacy, and broadly in the future pursue that lifestyle for the majority of my remaining life (I'm 37).
I had read and heard many things, and experienced it to some degree, the notion that in abstaining from any sexual stimulation (sex or masturbation), one can redirect the mental and physical energy that would be spent (wasted) towards these things into one's ambitions, goals and overall more important pursuits.
Ideas in that direction seem to be prevalent in both Vedic and Taoist teachings. However, there is also a lot of charlatans in this space. For instance, Napoleon Hill popularized "sex transmutation" but was himself a fraud. So I'm a bit wary of all the contemporary content creators associated with the nofap culture, and more interested in ancient traditions with a long history and track record.
I'd like to learn more about the practicality, in terms of meditations, yoga exercises and other techniques in order to ensure I get the most from recirculating my energy in this way. If there are some foundations of yoga, Eastern philosophy, and meditation that I should first establish first, please do share as well.

1 Comment
09:32 UTC


"The art of coffee and enquiry" - would like to hear about your experience.

Source : The art of coffee and enquiry (great read!)

ChatGPT summary for the lazy:

  1. **Stimulating The Mind**: Coffee, more specifically, caffeine, stimulates the mind, leading to heightened alertness and focus. This can impact mental states by making them more vibrant and more accessible for examination and introspection, making them potentially useful in exploring the mind through meditation.
  2. **Impact on Consciousness**: The author suggests that coffee can boost the "significance" of whatever enters our awareness. In other words, it makes our experiences more vivid or "real," potentially altering the very way these experiences are processed and perceived in our consciousness.
  3. **Meditation Aid**: The author posits that coffee can be used as a tool to enhance meditation. The increased focus it provides can deepen introspective practices like self-enquiry meditation. This involves focusing deeply on the most fundamental questions, like 'Who am I?' or 'What am I?', to understand and recognize our true nature.
  4. **Directing Energy Flow**: When used mindfully, the stimulant effect of coffee can be directed towards desired states such as relaxation, mindfulness, 'letting go', or fostering feelings of compassion. This effectively turns coffee into a tool for creating and incubating these beneficial mental states.
  5. **Cultivating Bodily Presence**: The author suggests that coffee can 'boost the body', in the sense that it can increase our awareness of our physical bodies. This heightened physical awareness can then be carried into yoga or mindfulness practice, grounding us more in the "now" and creating a sense of calm that permeates the day.
  6. **Caution Against Overconfidence**: However, the author also provides a cautionary note. Coffee's capacity to increase confidence may also promote overconfidence in our beliefs and ideas, leading us away from more objective examinations of our mental experiences.

please avoid addiction and chemistry talk.

07:37 UTC


Handbook for Hard Times

This new book looks wonderful. The Author was a jobbing actor in New York and London. He got burt-out and sought sanctuary in a monastery in Scotland! Wise words inside...Handbook for Hard Times...

07:15 UTC



I cannot breath normal relaxed when I sit upright. U know why?

06:48 UTC



Here we go again. This time is Osho (look the recent thread). I think we need a good discussion about our sources and what to expecr by them. Generally speaking methods of research are faulty. Why osho? Well easy: osho is omnipresent in social media and books, basically it's a very quick access to culture. So we get to the point: why do i discredit him? Methodology. What does it mean: it means beside judging the truth of your teacher, you can judge his teaching method and overall life conduct. It's easy for a good speaker to enchant you with words, it's their job. We can't resist a good speech, we have to take data from other sources or else we'll be trapped in some circular speech and it happens that people blindly act based on those speech. Why? Because they talk to a part of us that not rational, hence it bypasses your logica circuit. Nothing new, very good orator, Hitler also did that.

Tldr: beware of cult leaders, beware of fascinazione, take more than one source, discard the whole teacher (not the teaching) if any red flag. What do yoh think, that osho invented all his material? For what i've seen it's mostly common religious themes you can find elsewhere

05:52 UTC


How do I stop living in fear?

I meditate on and off and I can’t tell if it’s helped me as I’m still crippled with anxiety. I’m kind of traumatized by all of the health issues my mother has been through the last 8 years and I feel like I’m always just waiting for the next thing to happen. Any time she tells me she’s not feeling good I start panicking. Also, I’m a hypochondriac myself and I always feel certain I have diseases I haven’t been diagnosed with yet. It it’s not health related, then I’m worrying about money or work. I just want to be at peace but it’s like my mind won’t let me rest. I try to reassure myself by telling myself things like “there’s no point about worrying about what might happen” and “I can’t worry about what I can’t control”. But these thoughts quickly drift away and I’m back in my anxious and intrusive thoughts. So I was wondering if anyone else has dealt with similar anxiety and how meditation has helped them? I wonder how often and how long I should be meditating. Any advice is welcome and appreciated.

03:02 UTC


Physics agreed with Zen; we are one

In Zen and other schools of thought there is the concept of being one with everything, or of non-duality. That we are like waves in the same ocean. There are no separate individuals, just flowing points that are constantly changing.

I find it poetic that quantum field theory has found that this isn't just true at a conceptual or biological level, but also at the most fundamental level of reality.

It states that the universe is simply a few fields. And every particle in the universe is a wave in that field. One physicist went so far as to say "there is just one electron". The electron field fills the universe and each electron is a wave in it.

So every electron, quark and photon in your body is literally in the same field as my body. We are literally the same fields, the same ocean.

Zen never needed this conceptual confirmation, it was already experientially .. there. But isn't it beautiful nonetheless?

More on quantum fields:https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=zNVQfWC_evg&t=2972s&pp=ygUOUXVhbnR1bSBmaWVsZHM%3D

1 Comment
02:58 UTC


Should I consider the Yoga Nidra session on the Waking Up App as a helpful tool for enhancing my sleep?

Can I use a session from this app to enhance my sleep quality? Should I aim for one daily session, or are there other valuable sleep-related sessions available? Are there any worthwhile sessions within the Waking Up App that focus on improving sleep, and should I consider incorporating them into my daily routine?

02:47 UTC


Please send me some light! At the ER room because suicidal ideation is uncontrollable.

Hello, my lovely group. Your love and kindness has helped me so much and I’m back in difficult times asking for your energy and prayers and also wanting to know what’s the most wonderful thing that you’ve found in your silent self and that hopefully I’ll find once my will to live comes back. Thank you so much. You are all so deeply loved and I wish I can finally accept and embrace I too am loved.

02:09 UTC


What are samadhi and vipassana, and how should one practice them?

Can you shed light on samadhi and vipassana, including methods for their practice?

1 Comment
01:56 UTC


Complexities of focus

Recently I have been realizing how subtle focus is. Minor differences in approach can be dramatic. From shutting everything out by mentally overworking, to being more aware while mentally resting in the middle of chaos.

Its seems impossible to me that these extremes arise so subtlety. Just concentrating is not enough, its like you have to constantly be analyzing the correct way to place your mind back on your object. If something in your approach is off then your mind can work against you.

It seems to me like non total focus is essential, like an awareness of the object that can zoom in or out depending on circumstances. Especially if you are going through a regular work day. I am not sure if deeper states like jhana are more zoomed in though.

Does anyone have some insight to how to approach focus? I try to keep my focus going through my day to keep everything grounded, but sometimes I mess up the subtle things.

Any books or resources that you know of?

01:02 UTC


One of my first assignments in University, to write a personal examen.

  1. I focus on my breath and become aware of the energy around me, circulating through me.
  2. I give thanks to be where I am now. I am experiencing a divine presence, in which I share with others.
  3. I feel pain because it means that there was, and again will be, happiness. I feel content because I am in control of my path. I welcome all feelings because I am alive.
  4. I will avoid things that do not benefit me. I will live with intention. I will forgive myself for my shortcomings. I will project only love onto others.
  5. I trust that I am exactly where I need to be. The answers I need are deep within me and I know they are becoming clearer with each day. I was born aligned and I am here to do great things. I will always fall forward.
00:57 UTC


I feel like if one went to prison for like 7 years or even longer, not that I know anything about it, one could treat the experience as a monastery I’m sure it’s much more miserable than I could possibly imagine but if someone meditated all that time I wonder the effect.

Is there anyone who could speak to this experience? It’s just if someone took all of the distractions of life and one had an intense interest in meditation, the pure time you could put in could be of great benefit again this is something I’m ignorant of, but someone with insight on this could be interesting.

00:43 UTC


Modern version of Alan Watts?

Who would you think is a modern version of Alan Watts? Or is good at spreading similar teachings in a modern manner.

23:00 UTC


Is it common to experience a blank mind and discomfort when concentrating on my thoughts?

Whenever I attempt to concentrate on my thoughts, my mind becomes blank, preventing me from thinking about anything. In light of this, can I utilize this as a focal point to quell my thoughts? I must mention that when I make this effort, it feels as though my mind experiences some discomfort or slight "pain".

Does shifting one’s attention to their thoughts serve as a valuable focal point?

22:53 UTC


What do you listen to while meditating

Do you enjoy silence? Music? Ambience or nature sounds? Do you have any video recommendations or guided meditations you’d suggest? I’m guessing if you want to dive deeper spiritually, you’d sit in silence?

22:21 UTC

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