I seem to be facing a dilema here. I’m kind of been starting meditation but I’m trying to learn it on my own, as I do with a lot of stuff. So I haven’t spent time reading up on others people’s techniques so much as experimenting and seeing what works for me.
The progress I’ve made is being able to “separate” my consciousness from my body if that makes sense. It’s not completely out of body, it’s really like I’m putting my whole being into the center of my brain. When I do this meditation I’m able to withstand pain, and can stop headaches, and can put myself as peace. I can revert to this state of mind at will.
The dilema I’m facing is that people on this website are always talking about how they feel “one” with everything when they meditate. I feel the opposite. I feel as if I am even separate from my own body and that my consciousness is the only thing that is truly “me”.
Am I doing this wrong? Should I just be patient? What do you guys have to say about this?
Good job on meditating, experimenting, and then sticking with it! That in itself is an accomplishment.
Now, let’s get to business. It is true sometimes when you meditate, or in daily life, some people can get connected to the higher realms, or to put another way, feel one with everything. That is not the goal of meditation, although it does happen and with practice can be done at will.
I would suggest two techniques to you — anapana and vipassana.
That has a very in-depth explanation. Also, if you have the time, do a 10 day Vipassana Centre retreat. They will teach you these techniques.
From there, expanding onto other more advanced meditation will become much easier and you will get more out of them.
i think you are doing it right, follow your own work and your own process. i’ve found that this sort of meditation is just as beneficial to me as when i find a meditative state when i’m drawing. What is your intention for meditating? Maybe consider that and you’ll understand why you are feeling what you are feeling.
How do you feel about dreams? i think they offer a passage way, or a different clearing of the mind if we can consciously work with them.
i truly believe that the whole feeling of oneness isn’t actually felt until you can truly gain the sense and awareness of yourself, your capabilities. That’s when you know where you stand as an individual within the group.
What your experiencing could be described as the difference between concentration type meditations and mindfulness meditations – the 2 basic categories of all meditations.
In concentration meditations (zazen is a good example) you place the majority of your focus and attention on one thing, one point of reference, increasing your overall awareness of it – i.e. breath, chakras, etc. In mindfulness meditations (vipassana is the most common, and from what I’ve seen what most people practice) you place a little of your awareness on everything, never giving any one thing your complete attention.
That feeling of oneness is usually experienced in vipassana meditations. Not letting your awareness rest solely on one thing, your consciousness starts to dissolve into the environment around you. When that happens it’s common to experience disassociation with self, and a sense of oneness is felt.
What your doing is more along the lines of concentration meditation. Usually our conscious awareness is spread all throughout our bodies, but in your meditation your bringing it to a single point (from what your described, probably the third eye chakra or upper dantien), thus you feel a sense of separation from the rest of your body.
To answer the question of are you doing it wrong? – No. Each type of meditation has its own benefit. No single type is better over another, just more preferred depending on the given situation. If you want to experience that sense of oneness, instead of putting your focus on that single point in your head, just observe your environment. Become present of everything happening around and within you.
There is no wrong way to meditate.
The primary purpose of meditation, underlying all methods, is to quiet “mind chatter” in your left frontal lobe, the part of your brain that processes language, does logical reasoning, and looks at the world in a linear way. This is the part of your brain where conscious thoughts are constantly arising on everything and anything.
Meditation is an attempt to detach you from that and focus on the right side of the brain (which doesn’t see boundaries between objects, sees everything in terms of imagery, and is timeless).
So all the meditation methods are designed to detach you from your physical senses and immediate sense of awareness, and your concern about past and future events.
From what you describe, you are achieving exactly what you are supposed to. Meditation can also be viewed as a form of self-hypnosis, which has many of the same traits.
In the meditative state, try to give yourself suggestions in terms of things you want to achieve in your life (these are also often referred to as mantras, affirmations, visualizations…) The goal is to embed this into your subconciious or unconscious mind so these things become a habitual way of looking at the world whe you are not meditating.
It sounds to me like you’re focusing rather than “letting go”. I’m not a meditation guru by any means but I think I know what you’re talking about!
I suggest getting to that state of mind, then try to absolutely relax, almost as if you were trying to sleep. That’s how I meditate anyway. Sometimes hallucinations from the hypnogogic phase of sleep start to slip through, which is my eventual goal. A lot of cool stuff can happen from there. I haven’t quite hit my mark on it yet, though. (Keep in mind, I meditate maybe once a week if I find the time. I plan on making this a nightly ritual, though, over this summer.)