What happens during meditation?

People often ask us what actually happens when meditating.  Usually people find that their minds calm down during meditation and that they experience fewer chaotic or negative thoughts or feelings.  Usually people experience positive feelings and emotions, like joy or gratitude, peace or love, and feel a kind of clarity about who they really are or what they really want to do with their lives.  Most people ultimately feel a sense of connection with their own higher self or soul, which Sri Chinmoy often called the ‘Inner Pilot’.  The wonderful thing about meditation is that there are no limits to the beauty and significance ot the experiences that we can sometimes have.  Having said that, you will sometimes find that you seem to reach a plateau or go through a ‘dry spell’.  This is completely normal and it’s important not to be discouraged when this happens.  Just keep practising regularly and try some different techniques to inspire yourself.  You can also try reading some spiritual books or poetry or listening to some meditative music.

“Meditation is like going to the bottom of the sea, where everything is calm and tranquil.  On the surface there may be a multitude of waves, but the sea is not affected below.  In its deepest depths, the sea is all silence.  When we start meditating, first we try to reach our own inner existence, our true existence–that is to say, the bottom of the sea.  Then, when the waves come from the outside world, we are not affected.  Fear, doubt, worry and all the earthly turmoils just wash away, because inside us is solid peace.  Thoughts cannot touch us, because our mind is all peace, all silence, all oneness.  Like fish in the sea, they jump and swim but leave no mark.  When we are in our highest meditation, we feel that we are the sea, and the animals in the sea cannot affect us.  We feel that we are the sky, and all the birds flying past cannot affect us.  Our mind is the sky and our heart is the infinite sea.  This is meditation.” – Sri Chinmoy

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