Author Topic: Meditation and restrained emotions  (Read 235 times)

Mert

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Meditation and restrained emotions
« on: January 24, 2019, 06:08:22 PM »
Hi, I hope everyone doing well.

2-3 weeks ago I started meditating seriously. 1-2 years ago I read Zen Mind, didn't finish all but I knew the basics and logic of practice, till now didn't seriously practice. Found a comfortable pose and started meditating sometimes 30 minutes at once, 30 minutes would end and would feel like a minute. Focusing on body sensation, refinement of senses, breath and sometimes on how thoughts come up and why. After some time I came to realize how the thoughts are there popping out, and they couldn't control me much like before.

This was the breaking point. I realized my body started to came back and forth while meditating and I had to stop it consciously. If I let go again, it would start again. Like something inside me was getting too much on me, and I couldn't handle it? Wasn't too much of an issue though, I thought. Then started my all-day long headaches, somewhere close to top of my head. I am not sure if the body reaction while meditating or headache appeared earlier. This was not normal. I didn't meditated 1 week and still the headache is not "completely" gone.

The thing what really disturbs me isn't my headache, it is the subtle emotional response. Things I thought I perfectly overcame and accepted came out instead as more refined.
 I felt so wronged. I thought if black is black, gray is gray and white is white that's it, I don't want to tolerate anything. This made my headaches even worse at the time.

I realized that, when my body came back and forth while meditating is the same but more controlled, conscious and slow compared to the time when I have done a guided meditation about past life memories. My body would tremble so much and wouldn't let me in.

I read some posts here and some of you say one needs a teacher or practice group to not experience these kind of things. I'm afraid can't find any teacher in this country. I read some other things in internet that over focusing eyes causes headaches etc. but I don't think those apply to me.

Did you experienced this too? What is this? What should I do?
« Last Edit: January 24, 2019, 06:17:06 PM by Mert »

stillpointdancer

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Re: Meditation and restrained emotions
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2019, 11:24:35 AM »

I read some posts here and some of you say one needs a teacher or practice group to not experience these kind of things. I'm afraid can't find any teacher in this country. I read some other things in internet that over focusing eyes causes headaches etc. but I don't think those apply to me.

Did you experienced this too? What is this? What should I do?

Sounds pretty normal to me. Stuff happens when you meditate, but it's really just the mind struggling against what you are doing to it. A teacher would help, but only to talk you through those times, since they happen when you have a teacher too. As for the eyes, try meditating with eyes closed so they have nothing to focus on.
“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

Mert

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Re: Meditation and restrained emotions
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2019, 07:56:10 PM »
As for the eyes, try meditating with eyes closed so they have nothing to focus on.

I heard that some people are looking down while their eyes closed to prevent unintentional focusing. Is this tip something you know of? I don't want to add any unnecessary things to practice that's why I'm asking.

Thanks for the reply.

stillpointdancer

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Re: Meditation and restrained emotions
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2019, 11:49:05 AM »
As for the eyes, try meditating with eyes closed so they have nothing to focus on.

I heard that some people are looking down while their eyes closed to prevent unintentional focusing. Is this tip something you know of? I don't want to add any unnecessary things to practice that's why I'm asking.

Thanks for the reply.
For me it depends on where I am meditating and the purpose of the meditation. If I want to visualise something then I find it easier with my eyes closed. If the surroundings are somewhat distracting, then eyes closed again. On the other hand if I am using Just Sitting meditation, say in the garden, then eyes open is best for me. Eyes open but down and unfocussed is tricky for me, but has led to some interesting experiences, so I don't rule it out. I think I go for eyes closed as I find eyes open can give me headaches too, which I have never had with eyes closed.
“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

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
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Re: Meditation and restrained emotions
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2019, 10:27:35 PM »
2-3 weeks ago I started meditating seriously. 1-2 years ago I read Zen Mind, didn't finish all but I knew the basics and logic of practice, till now didn't seriously practice. Found a comfortable pose and started meditating sometimes 30 minutes at once, 30 minutes would end and would feel like a minute. Focusing on body sensation, refinement of senses, breath and sometimes on how thoughts come up and why. After some time I came to realize how the thoughts are there popping out, and they couldn't control me much like before.

This is a good start. Being able to see the arising of thought and not being so controlled by them.

This was the breaking point. I realized my body started to came back and forth while meditating and I had to stop it consciously. If I let go again, it would start again. Like something inside me was getting too much on me, and I couldn't handle it? Wasn't too much of an issue though, I thought. Then started my all-day long headaches, somewhere close to top of my head. I am not sure if the body reaction while meditating or headache appeared earlier. This was not normal. I didn't meditated 1 week and still the headache is not "completely" gone.

The thing what really disturbs me isn't my headache, it is the subtle emotional response. Things I thought I perfectly overcame and accepted came out instead as more refined.
 I felt so wronged. I thought if black is black, gray is gray and white is white that's it, I don't want to tolerate anything. This made my headaches even worse at the time.

I realized that, when my body came back and forth while meditating is the same but more controlled, conscious and slow compared to the time when I have done a guided meditation about past life memories. My body would tremble so much and wouldn't let me in.

This trembling or shaking is the response to unhealed deep trauma from this lifetime. The headaches are probably the result of the same thing. I would recommend taking a very gentle approach to meditation, based just on noting the breathing sensations created with each in breath and out breath, and relaxing/calming the body with each in breath and outbreath. There is a more detailed instruction on the homepage, Calm-abiding meditation.

You may also want to look into TRE "Traumatic Release Exercises", created by David Bercelli. This technique is a physical way of deliberately initiating the shaking response, which is a function of all mammals healing from trauma. Here is an example with a polar bear recovering from the trauma of being caught for monitoring:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lHVNUDPMeSY

Basically, after trauma, animals (including man) "shake" off trauma immediately after it happens. However, if trauma is repeated or prolonged the trauma release is suppressed. This is what has happened to you.

TRE exercises will induce the shaking and release the trauma from your body. They can work well in connjuction with the the right meditation. You may be able to find a qualified TRE therapist to do some sessions with near you to release trauma. You can learn in a few sessions then do the work at home.

You may also want to consider finding a trauma focused therapist or counsellor if the TRE alone does not work.

This is what TRE looks like in practice and an introduction to how it works:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WReAjA7Nx4M

You can find a TRE worker here:

https://traumaprevention.com/tre-provider-list/

Other interventions that may help include Peter Levine's Somatic Experiencing and also EMDR "Eye Movement De-sensitisation and Re-training". The last will only work well if you remember what the trauma is. If you do not it is more an indication that working gently in all your meditation and other recovery techniques will be important to you.

I read some posts here and some of you say one needs a teacher or practice group to not experience these kind of things. I'm afraid can't find any teacher in this country. I read some other things in internet that over focusing eyes causes headaches etc. but I don't think those apply to me.

You don't need a teacher to learn to meditate, though it can help. When meditating eyes should be relaxed, looking at the floor about 1-2M in front of you, eyes open or closed but not focused tightly.
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

Mert

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Re: Meditation and restrained emotions
« Reply #5 on: January 30, 2019, 02:16:19 AM »
Basically, after trauma, animals (including man) "shake" off trauma immediately after it happens. However, if trauma is repeated or prolonged the trauma release is suppressed. This is what has happened to you.

TRE exercises will induce the shaking and release the trauma from your body. They can work well in connjuction with the the right meditation.

Last night before your post, I've started to meditate again. Realized that I focused too much on my brain, and was able to control the dynamic of focus, hence my headaches gone away. After the deepest meditation I ever had, I got up and lay down. I am sure I was looking exactly same as the polar bear at the video. Same experience, everything is identical so much that I am shocked. My mood was extremely stable and not even for a second felt overwhelmed all-day.

I had no idea what was going on. I really appreciate the information and experience you share.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 02:20:33 AM by Mert »

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
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  • Meditation: It's a D.I.Y. project.
    • KISS: Keep it simple stupid.
    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: Meditation and restrained emotions
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2019, 06:38:43 PM »
I had no idea what was going on. I really appreciate the information and experience you share.

Glad to know that this knowledge helped. Let your body shake off the trauma. When meditating best results are eyes open but relaxed looking at the floor 1 to 2M away. Keep balance in all things, disciplined but not forced. It's like learning to ride a bicycle: you have to fall off a few times before you get the hang of it.
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~