by Victor Parachin | June 24, 2015 2:55 pm
Whether a time of meditation is several days or several hours or several minutes, returning to the outside world can be disturbing, annoying and even overwhelming. Some people, especially after a few hours of meditation, feel assaulted by the sights, sounds and sensations of life. When we enter meditation (regardless of the time length) we move from things that are loud and forceful into something refined and gentle. Thoughtless transitions from meditation to ordinary consciousness can create their own set of difficulties such as irritability, stress, a headache or other physical pains. Here are ten thoughtful ways of ending meditation: (It’s not necessary to do them all but pick a few combinations that agree with you)
1. Change your focus from inward to outward. Begin to feel your body, view the room, see other beings, hear the sounds of meditation ending.
2. Breath deeply a few times – long inhales and exhales.
3. Gently move your upper body – shoulders, arms, head, neck, do a seated twist of some kind.
4. Gently move your lower body – legs, ankles, feet, toes. This is especially important if the legs have fallen asleep or have generated discomfort from sitting in meditation.
5. Rub your hands together to create a tingling sensation.
6. Gently massage your eyes opening them only after the eyes feel comfortable. Once they’re open just sit for a few more breaths.
7. Express gratitude for meditation, for other meditators in the room, for the meditation leader.
8. Adjust your clothing. Your body temperature may have risen or dropped during meditation. Take off a layer or add one as needed.
9. Decide whether you wish to speak with others or simply exit quietly.
10. Finally, be sensitive to other meditators. Some will feel very relaxed and open to gentle post-meditation conversation while others who feel the same calmness may wish to leave undisturbed by talk. Do your best to sense whether or not conversation is appropriate.
The bottom line: making a thoughtful transition out of meditation allows you to solidify the gains attained in meditation, absorb the full benefits of the practice, and empower you to take your peaceful, joyful mind back into the “real” world.”
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