Author Topic: Strange heart sensensation during meditation  (Read 449 times)

marmolada12

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Strange heart sensensation during meditation
« on: July 31, 2020, 03:54:07 PM »
Hi all


I wrote this post weeks ago, but because I felt better I decided not to share it. Today the same thing I described below happened to me, I'm worried and would like to know if someone knows anything about or felt the same.

My name is Ada, I'm 21 years old.
I’ve been meditating for almost 2 years years now, every day for about 5-12 minutes. A couple of weeks ago I had my first 30 minutes long meditation (it was a guided visualization). In the last maybe 10 minutes of the practice, I felt like my heart skipped a beat, my whole body fluttered, it kind of felt like I was falling asleep and someone pulled me back. I didn’t really care about it then and just kept going with the practice.
The same sensation occurred multiple times after, in the same situation (the end of the meditation). I started to really worry about it. The feeling became stronger and now makes my body flutter every time I meditate, ruining my practice. Since I realized something is not right, the sensation started to haunt me at night, right before falling asleep. I'm afraid of it, my sleep is very bad and I wake up almost every hour. In the same days I started meditating for longer I also started the Wim Hoff breathing technique. When this happened to me at night for the first time I stopped this practice cause I thought it might be in some kind related.
After it kept happening to me for a couple of days in a row, I called the doctor. He thinks it's the stress related to moving out of the house in 2 weeks, although I told him I'm not that stressed (at least consciously) about it. I had a blood test done and am going to have ECG. Still waiting for the results.
I have a healthy lifestyle, I'm vegan, I eat clean, drink a lot of water, supplement with vitamins and exercise.
 
But I also have depression and anxiety. Since I started to do yoga and focus a lot more than before on my spirituality (about 3 months now) my mental health is a lot better and I manage it easier than ever.
In the past, I had the feeling of my heart skipping a beat although it felt different from what I have now and wasn't regular at all (once for a couple of months, now- every day before going to sleep and meditating).
I also had a pain in the left side of my chest, have been taken by ambulance, and tested with ECG. Medics told me that everything looks good and it's probably one of the chest muscles cause I did yoga with a lot of chaturangas that day, or stress.

Today I woke up gasping for breath. I never had this sensation before, I know how my sleep paralysis used to feel and it's completely different. I'm really worried, I haven't slept almost the whole night cause I'm simply afraid to do so.
Does anyone have any idea what it is? Why did it start to happen while meditating for longer?
I'd highly appreciate any answer.


And now the update after a couple of weeks:
After having done ECG and the blood test the doctor said everything looks good and its most probably anxiety. She prescribed me anxiety and insomnia medication. My sleep got a lot better, the heart sensation I was describing before stopped completely. But there's also another thing. Because of moving around and having a lot on my head, I narrowed down the meditation to about 13 minutes.

A couple of days ago, when I already settled at the new place, I expanded my practice to 30 minutes.
And today it happened again, exactly the same feeling as before, at the of the practice.

I'm really confused, can anyone share their thoughts/experiences with this kind of feeling?

Thank you for taking your time on reading.


dharma bum

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Re: Strange heart sensensation during meditation
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2020, 03:42:12 PM »
Usually in meditation we observe sensations and note that they are transient, temporary and they arise and disappear. But if meditation causes you anxiety attacks, then maybe you shouldn't do it or do it under the guidance of an experienced teacher.
Mostly ignorant

Dhamma

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Re: Strange heart sensensation during meditation
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2020, 05:17:55 PM »
Anxiety is crippling. I know this from years and years of anxiety attacks.

Many years ago, meditation induced panic attacks, so I wasn't able to meditate properly.

You have to convince yourself that the problem is your mind - not your body. That is not easy to do.

A Theravada monk teacher suggested that it is perfectly fine to lie down to meditate instead of sitting in the standard meditation position.

You might consider TRE shaking therapy (google it). You can do it by yourself.  It's simple. You shake out all the tensions and traumas built up in the body.  As long as you don't have real psychosis (severe PTSD, bipolarism, etc.), you will be fine. If you have severe mental illness, you need to do it under a trained TRE expert. That said,  most all the videos on Youtube show you how easy it is. The only thing is, is that you have to stay with it. You can't do it for a month or two, and then quit.

You need to combine TRE perhaps with your vipassana or zen-style meditation practice. Even some Tibetan visualization meditations would be good for you. Learn to observe your body, and understand that all your emotions arise from transient thoughts that have no inherent value or existence.

Also, perhaps try chanting "AH", and feel the vibration below the belly button; or, go do Shumbhavi mudra (raise your head a bit and turn your eyes inward toward the third eye area between eyebrows on a lotus position.

I'm sorry if I overloaded you with information. There is hope. The holy Buddha promised that "even this shall pass" (impermanence of all phenomena). I tell myself this. It is logical, but yet we fight against the rational mind. We know all things are constantly changing.

I've been struggling lately with anxiety and anger. It is samsara. Another thing that helps is knowing that life is suffering. You must come to terms with this reality.
 
Much love in the Dharma  :)
« Last Edit: August 03, 2020, 05:47:27 PM by Dhamma »
You are already Buddha

mobius

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Re: Strange heart sensensation during meditation
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2020, 12:25:26 AM »
Thanks very much for the mention of TRE exercises; I'm going to try this!

I've recently had a similar experience.
When I first starting meditating I had a whole host of bizarre experienced which I won't go into here (it's documented somewhere else on this forum). But never had any heart problems that I recall in my life.

Suddenly about a year ago after choking on some food; later that night I had what I could only describe as a heart attack. I don't know cause I never had one and was more likely just a heart murmur or flutter: but it felt like my heart was growing or rising up in my chest; and the blood flow around there was like too fast. It's hard to describe and I bet only some one with any kind of heart problem or issue would understand. It was brief but it came back a few times occasionally every few days or so; and afterward I felt weak and tired and slight difficulty in breathing. So I went to the doctor and they couldn't find anything wrong. Months passed without it coming back but this summer it came back and every few weeks or so I get it again.

No idea if this is even related to meditation but after my other experiences I wouldn't be surprised...

This makes me torn between the ideas of "There are so many things so wrong with me that just sitting still causes all of this bad stuff to come out or happen." and "I was fine before; so why bother meditate at all and just live happily as I was."
"Not knowing how near the truth is, we seek it far away."
-Hakuin Ekaku

"I have seen a heap of trouble in my life, and most of it has never come to pass" - Mark Twain

Dhamma

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Re: Strange heart sensensation during meditation
« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2020, 03:22:59 AM »
Dear mobius,

I sometimes wake up with heart palpitations for a few minutes in the middle of the night. My heart races like crazy.  I have a hiatal hernia (digestive issues) which puts pressure on the vagus nerve. This, in turn, causes heart flutterings and, to a lesser degree, palpitations. I've had this problem for years. Sometimes it's better than others. I'm currently doing different techniques to help alleviate it (TRE, kriya yoga, Tsa lung, Tummo breathing, acupressure, and supplements).  So far, things are a bit better, but mentally, I am a bit off, as I feel isolated where I live (people think very differently than I do). I need to move, but have fears of leaving my comfort zone.

You have to do TRE every day - a month is not enough. It takes time for trauma to come out of our innermost bodies. It offers great help, but it is only one of several tools in the shed for achieving greater enlightenment and happiness.

Another great technique:

Something that I have been doing for a while is Shambhavi Mudra, which is when I focus on the point between the eyebrows during meditation. I just let my thoughts be without engaging them. This is a great way to get greater clarity and peace over time as it helps to open the Third Eye.

We tell ourselves stories about reality that are 100% false, but believe them anyways because of our strong delusions. You are not your body, and neither are you your mind, friend. This must be ingrained in our minds.

You are not alone, dear friend. We are all in samsara together. I have a long history of anxiety attacks and debilitating anxiety. This is exacerbated by my hiatal hernia, which causes a whole array of issues (digestion, vagus term irritation, lightheadedness, headaches, etc.). Social anxiety has also settled in because I think very differently than the people I live around. I want so badly to move, but, because I fear missing my beloved family, I stay planted.

If I can be of more help to you, please ask me. I still suffer from great ignorance and delusion, but I think I learned at least a few things about Buddhist/Yogi enlightenment over the past few years.

Love in the Dhamma,

Dhamma :)
« Last Edit: August 25, 2020, 03:27:12 AM by Dhamma »
You are already Buddha

mobius

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Re: Strange heart sensensation during meditation
« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2020, 06:17:52 PM »
thanks for all this info!
I also have minor stomach issues from time to time so maybe it has to do with that like your case. As of now I'm going to just bear it unless it gets worse or more frequent.

I also struggle with living with people I don't agree with but can't move just yet due to fear and my economic situation presently which is not good.
I want to move very soon, I really don't like my family much at all. The older I get the more I realize they've been a bad influence on me and my health.
Times when I'm away from my family I generally feel better all over too, and I don't miss them. I know that sounds horrible to some people but all I can say is that's honestly how it is.
I think sometimes people can be reasoned with and talked to/listened to. Other times its just not possible and the best thing to do is avoid them entirely; no sense in poisoning yourself or others or wasting your time.

Often (but not always) when I meditate I get a headache; a point of pain that's usually on my forehead and grows in intensity and spreads through my head. I've tried a number of times to do nothing and continue meditating as I did but it usually becomes unbearable. If I stop, open my eyes, or rub my forehead or temples it goes away and sometimes stays away, sometimes it comes back.
"Not knowing how near the truth is, we seek it far away."
-Hakuin Ekaku

"I have seen a heap of trouble in my life, and most of it has never come to pass" - Mark Twain

Dhamma

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  • May we all fulfill our deepest wish for happiness
    • I take from all Buddhist schools + some yogic schools
Re: Strange heart sensensation during meditation
« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2020, 02:10:56 AM »
thanks for all this info!
I also have minor stomach issues from time to time so maybe it has to do with that like your case. As of now I'm going to just bear it unless it gets worse or more frequent.

I also struggle with living with people I don't agree with but can't move just yet due to fear and my economic situation presently which is not good.
I want to move very soon, I really don't like my family much at all. The older I get the more I realize they've been a bad influence on me and my health.
Times when I'm away from my family I generally feel better all over too, and I don't miss them. I know that sounds horrible to some people but all I can say is that's honestly how it is.
I think sometimes people can be reasoned with and talked to/listened to. Other times its just not possible and the best thing to do is avoid them entirely; no sense in poisoning yourself or others or wasting your time.

Often (but not always) when I meditate I get a headache; a point of pain that's usually on my forehead and grows in intensity and spreads through my head. I've tried a number of times to do nothing and continue meditating as I did but it usually becomes unbearable. If I stop, open my eyes, or rub my forehead or temples it goes away and sometimes stays away, sometimes it comes back.

Dear friend,

I understand you completely. 

I have found that Shambhavi Mudra (focusing on the point between the eyebrows) has helped me a lot for mental clarity and emotional balance. You need to practice every day.  While doing it, I just sit and be.  You learn how to develop one-pointedness concentration as well.  Third eye concentration is quite powerful. Many Buddhists do this as well - not just yogis. I also think it helps to see life more clearly: impermanence, emptiness of phenomena, etc.

Please try TSR release. It's so simple and effective. Many videos explain it on Youtube.  Stay with it.

Chant matras as well, and feel the vibrations from your root chakra to the chakra on the crown on your head. This will help weed out imbalances in your body.

The problem with Buddhism (a little less in some of the Tibetan traditions as they have Tibetan yoga) is the neglect of the body. The body and mind must be yoked in perfect harmony. You have to work on both body and mind. Mind is not everything as it's attached to the body. This is where the yogis excel.  I am still a Buddhist, however. LOL. But, Buddha was first a yogi!

Peace and enlightenment.  ;)
You are already Buddha

 

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