Author Topic: Twitching violently during meditation  (Read 5660 times)

Pelopota

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Twitching violently during meditation
« on: December 05, 2016, 06:43:10 AM »
Hi everyone. I have been meditating for a few years now and the one thing that has remained constant is the uncontrollable and violent head/body jerking that I experience during the entire meditation session. I'll post a video below of me meditating for a few seconds to give you some perspective. I guess my question is does this happen to anyone else and why is it happening? Thank you.  https://youtu.be/AeB075VRF9Q
« Last Edit: December 05, 2016, 06:46:10 AM by Pelopota »

stillpointdancer

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #1 on: December 05, 2016, 01:50:22 PM »
Happens to me a lot. I think it's when we start to become more mindful of bodily sensations. We find it unusual, so start to twitch, and stuff like that. Later 'twitching' can be the result of euphoria, bliss and rapture, so be warned  ;)
“You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.” Franz Kafka

Nicky

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #2 on: December 05, 2016, 09:56:33 PM »
Based on your video, I can only speculate or guess to tell us what you are actually doing when you meditate?

Are you breathing very deeply?

Do you practise any form of strong hatha yoga or strong Chinese movements, such as Chi Kung?

By the look of the video, it seems like you are pushing/forcing/redirecting prana/breath energy into your limbs & body in an unnatural manner when you meditate (and, as a result, as shown in the video, the prana/breath energy is attempting to escape/release).

.............
« Last Edit: December 05, 2016, 09:58:18 PM by Nicky »

Pelopota

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2016, 10:19:54 PM »
I don't use any method or at least I don't think I do... It takes me about a second to find an opening and I just go through it. The longer I can stay within that realm and just keep ignoring my thoughts the deeper and more expansive my reality becomes and also the more bliss I feel. However with the good comes the bad. The twitching that you saw in the video becomes increasingly more violent the deeper I go. I have had an ambulance called on me twice because I decided to try it in public. I guess people must have thought I was possessed or something.
 

Goofaholix

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2016, 10:34:13 PM »
How can you meditate for a few seconds? I think probably for almost everybody it take several minutes to settle down into a meditative mode and some people rarely if ever settle down.  The video doesn't show me anything to do with meditation, just acting.

Assuming you are acting to show an example of what you experience after settling down during meditation the first problem is as you state you don't practice any method so presumably also don't have a teacher, which is also presumably why we are being asked to diagnose what is going on.

I recommend you read and start to practice the methods linked in the resources section, look into not only how to do the method but the reasons for it and what it is supposed to achieve, and find a teacher.  Then if this continues to be a problem we may be able to help.

Middleway

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2016, 11:38:03 PM »
I suggest you go to a doctor and get you head scanned. That is indeed very bizarre.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

Nicky

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2016, 11:43:38 PM »
Or visit a competent acupuncturist.

Such shaking is generally emotions or, otherwise, prana/breath/chi energy trying to escape that is blocked in the body due to some neurological problem of energy flow.

A doctor can give an EEG or otherwise an acupuncturist might diagnose the issue.

Pelopota

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #7 on: December 06, 2016, 01:33:13 AM »
When I went to the hospital they did several tests on my brain and didn't find any abnormalities. I learned to meditate by watching YouTube videos of different enlightened teachers like Eckhart, Gangaji, And Bentinho. And yeah it does take me several minutes to experience higher levels of awareness. In the video I'm not acting. I'm in the thoughtless realm and my body freaks out as a result. I could post a longer video if you don't believe me.

Goofaholix

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #8 on: December 06, 2016, 02:37:45 AM »
When I went to the hospital they did several tests on my brain and didn't find any abnormalities. I learned to meditate by watching YouTube videos of different enlightened teachers like Eckhart, Gangaji, And Bentinho. And yeah it does take me several minutes to experience higher levels of awareness. In the video I'm not acting. I'm in the thoughtless realm and my body freaks out as a result. I could post a longer video if you don't believe me.

I doubt what you're experiencing is an expected result of the techniques taught by the teachers you mention, but probably the only way to confirm that and get help is to contact them.

In vipassana practice I've heard that people occasionally get spasms but nothing near like what you've demonstrated, in 20 years of retreat practice I've only come across someone experiencing it in a noticeable way once.

My advice would be either to get help from someone who teaches what you're practicing, or change to doing vipassana practice, or stop meditation altogether for a while as it seems the side effects outweighs the benefits for you.

Nicky

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #9 on: December 06, 2016, 03:52:19 AM »
I'm in the thoughtless realm and my body freaks out as a result. I could post a longer video if you don't believe me.

I have no need to disbelieve the symptoms. As I posted, if the mind is in the 'gentle void non-attached abandoned thoughtless realm' then the shaking is due to mental &/or breath energy that is trapped & trying to escape.

My advice is to have an acupuncture treatment because a skilled expert acupuncturist can open up all of your energy channels very easily and whatever energy is trapped within your nervous system will come to the surface & into consciousness & out of your body while lying down on the acupuncturist's table.  You can discover for yourself what this energy is.

If it is just misplaced excess breath energy, you will feel nauseous when the energy is released. If it is emotional energy, you will feel the anger, sadness or whatever it is when the energy is released. 

I know an expert acupuncturist who understands these things very well (who once specialised in treating Ching Kung prana/chi induced disorders in China) but he is now in Australia.

The symptoms in the video seem very violent if not induced by faulty yoga/Chi Kung/pranayama practise. However, such less violent symptoms can certainly occur in the process of awakening/purification when neurological 'adjustments' occur.

Acupuncture is the path, imo, but only an acupuncturist that understands.

Best wishes



« Last Edit: December 06, 2016, 04:04:30 AM by Nicky »

Pelopota

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2016, 05:17:08 AM »
Me not meditating anymore seemed like a viable option back when I first started but since then I have been shown who I really am on several occasions and to varying degrees. No matter how painful it gets I can't stop now until I am fully realized. Acupuncture seems extremely intriguing to me, to be honest. Energy blockages could definitely be the reason why my body is reacting this way.
 I just wanted to say thank you so much for the help everyone. It's nice not feeling like such an outsider for once.


BeHereNow

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2016, 02:30:02 PM »
For me, any twitching or movement tends to arise out of a very subtle attempt to move or "release" blocked sensations.  This causes a level of subtle aggression and resistance.  What works for me is to become bigger than any sensation, allow your awareness to expand beyond the tension or block and just let it be there.  A very kind, soft awareness, loving of what is arising, without trying to change it.  Curious about the shape and texture, even if it means your awareness gets much much bigger than your body. 

This treatment of the sensations can be balanced with a soft, very gentle awareness of the natural flow of breath.  As you relax more and more with the breath, the sensations will change but your body won't need to move.

See if at some level you are trying to "do" something with the sensations, in your attempt to become "enlightenened" or liberated or whatever.  Dropping the ambition around the whole process and just becoming familiar with your breath and body just as it is in this moment may help.

Lots of love,
Paula
"You are the Sky.  Everything else is just the weather." - Pema Chodron

cmason

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #12 on: December 06, 2016, 08:13:26 PM »
I don't know if twitching like that is consider healthy, even if it is from meditation. I would definitely go get checked out for that. Personally, I just finished meditating, and by the end of it my legs twitched just a little bit. This happened when I went from one thought to another and it wasn't anywhere close to how violent your twitching is.  ???

Quardamon

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Re: Twitching violently during meditation
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2016, 12:32:27 PM »
I don't use any method or at least I don't think I do... It takes me about a second to find an opening and I just go through it. The longer I can stay within that realm and just keep ignoring my thoughts the deeper and more expansive my reality becomes and also the more bliss I feel. However with the good comes the bad. The twitching that you saw in the video becomes increasingly more violent the deeper I go. I have had an ambulance called on me twice because I decided to try it in public. I guess people must have thought I was possessed or something.

There are moments that I move my arms in a sudden movement. And then I sit still again for a several minutes. It are movements like putting the palms of my hands together (like in prayer) or stretching my arms up.
I remember seeing a video of a vipassana teacher who said it can be interesting to allow such movements, and also it can be interesting to avoid them. Both are good as training. Avoiding them means also: getting aware how they start.
From what you write, you do know how they start: You "keep ignoring your thoughts". Correct me if I am wrong, but that sounds like an activity: ignoring. You even speak of "finding an opening and going through it".

That last thing sounds like going on a shamanic journey as described by Michael Harner. That technique is very different from vipassana as taught by S.N. Goenka. It is also very different from vipassana as taught by Mahassy Sayadaw or by the Insight Meditation Society. It is also different from the shamatha instructions given on this website.
Going "deeper and [to] a more expansive reality" also sounds like shamanic journeying. But in shamanic journeying, you keep track of where you are going, and you make sure that you know the way back. It is more like getting to know a landscape. You also learn safety measures, and develop and strengthen those.

Such movements I never saw with the 60 or so people that I was journeying. They were laying quietly on the floor.

You say, that "the twitching becomes increasingly more violent the deeper I go". What intrigues me, is the word "violent". Maybe you get more than you thought that you were catering for. Even bliss is something to be careful about. The way I understand the Buddhist path, bliss is a beautiful thing, but bliss is not the leading principle.
It is good that you ask.
Take care.