Why Meditation Doesn’t Work?

“Why meditation doesn’t work for me?” You ask.

And the answer is simple:

Because not everybody has what it takes to meditate!

Confusing?

Well, I can understand where you’re coming from. And you have every right to be confused (Heck! even offended).

Most probably, you recently started sitting in meditation, hoping that meditation will work for you and you’ll be able to achieve peace of mind… but meditation doesn’t seem to work for you, and that is driving you crazy, right?

“If meditation is not for everyone and if meditation doesn’t work for everybody, then why the hell do so many meditation gurus recommend it?”

I can understand your frustration. But, bear with me, and I’ll explain.

Meditation is the new “in” thing, you see.

YouTubers, celebrities, sportspersons, movie stars . . . everybody swears by the benefits of meditation—meditation reduces stress, increases brain power, improves memory, and it’s a perfect tool for personal development, and…the list is quite long.

And so, seeing all that hype and reviews and testimonials, you too joined the Let’s Meditate Everyday Club.

After all, who could resist the temptation to use meditation to reduce stress and anxiety?  And get happy and blissed out by sitting with eyes closed for just a few minutes?

(If only things were that simple!)

Well, sorry to disappoint you, but what you’ve heard till now about meditation is a half-truth.

And half-truths are dangerous.

In fact, fatal.

Do you know why?

Because unless you’re aware of the dangers of meditation, and why meditation doesn’t work for everyone, you are better off staying away from it.

In other words, do not try to meditate before you have the complete picture of meditation. Because making any uninformed move in the realm of meditation can cause you harm. Beyond recovery.

I am serious.

Unclear?

Don’t worry! Today, I shall give you the complete truth, the “naked truth” of meditation, including warnings about meditation, the dangers of meditation, and if meditation can cause you harm.

All this, so you can understand why meditation is not working for you and if you should stop meditating.

But let me warn you… you’re not going to like it. In fact, you might hate me for what I am going to reveal. But that’s okay. Somebody’s got to do the “ugly” work, right?

Let’s dive right in.

Does Meditation Really Work for Everyone? Can It Give You Peace of Mind?

Meditation: Osho Sannyasins at Osho Dham, New Delhi in January 2018

Yes, and no.

It depends.

You see, meditation can give you peace of mind if you’re willing to take the risk because the risk is there, and it’s pretty REAL. The truth is, you may lose your mind and go crazy in meditation.

“But ain’t meditation safe. Everybody says it is, right?”

I know what they say.

And that’s why I must help you see the complete truth of meditation before you wonder “Why meditation doesn’t work for me?” So, please do me a favor: put that Mindfulness Awareness Meditation session on hold. Read this article. And then decide if meditation is really for you.

Now, let me give you an analogy to understand my point of view:

How Your Mind is Similar to a Pair of Sunglasses

It’s a no-brainer that sunglasses protect your eyes from the harsh sun.

They help you see the world without straining when the lenses are sparkling clean. But when the same glasses get dirty, your vision gets blurred.

People and objects appear distorted, even scary. So, what do you do in such a situation? Do you wipe people’s faces or clean the lenses?

You know the answer.

Your mind is no different than sunglasses. Here’s how:

You stay just fine as long as your mind is “clean,” but the moment dust (repressed emotions) settles over your psyche, you start taking the world for something it is not… hostile and unfriendly!

And as a result, fear, resentment, frustration, and anxiety creep in.

That’s exactly what happened to me.

Let me elaborate.

It Hurt Like Hell, But Nobody Asked “How Much?”

I was born into a middle-class family.

Resources were scarce, people were unfriendly, and circumstances were messed up. In fact, misfortune ruined my childhood and also the prime of my youth.

Long story short—I was fucked!

During those 20 long years of suffering, my mind and body were in terrible shape.

I received neither love nor attention. Skinny and frail and scared, I was prone to sicknesses. And by and by, I slipped into depression.

I had no close friends or relatives to share my joys or sorrows with. In fact, even talking to my own parents was next to impossible because they were already facing hard times, and I didn’t want to add insult to injury. So I decided to keep my lips sealed, no matter the cost.

And it cost me beyond imagination.

Now: Imagine a pressure cooker sitting on a high flame.

The heat turning the cooker into a furnace, the pressure building inside, the steam going berserk to get the hell out . . . and then suddenly somebody putting a rock on the outlet. Now, there’s no way for the steam to release. So, what do you think will happen?

The cooker will explode into pieces, right?

My mind could also have exploded just like that. Things were so bad that I planned to commit suicide. But then, I got lucky—the Universe introduced me to meditation.

In fact, I am alive today only because of meditation.

So, here I am, explaining how meditation saved my life and warning you not to meditate. Weird, eh?

You’ll see.

Can Anyone Meditate?

Yes.

But the question is, should you?

What if meditation doesn’t work for you? What if it can have negative effects on you? And what if meditation is simply not for you? Then what?

I am aware that the “experts” claim meditation works for everyone. Meditate for just a couple of minutes each day and you’re all set. That’s the RDA of meditation, right?

Well, I have one bad piece of news for you. Actually, there are two:

Meditation is not easy. And it is not a quick fix.

(Translation: Meditation doesn’t work for everyone.)

It’s not like you’ve had a headache, and you swallowed a pill, and the pain’s gone. No, it doesn’t work that way.

The truth is, that meditation could be highly dangerous because it is actually the process of opening a can full of worms. Don’t take meditation seriously unless you have the courage to face your inner demons. For good.

So, am I challenging the belief that everyone should meditate? Yes, that’s exactly what I am doing. Here’s why…

Nasty Cobwebs, Filthy Clutter, and the Urge to Puke

A typical household has different rooms: a bedroom, living room, guest room, etc.

Have you ever noticed the difference between your bedroom and the guest room?

You keep the guest room in pretty good shape. The sofas should be clean, the table should sparkle, and the curtains must be dust-free. This room is for entertaining guests, and you really want to make a good first impression.

Fair enough.

On the other hand, the bedroom, though, is not that important to you.

And it’s understandable. The guests rarely enter your bedroom, so it can stay a little shabby, and what the hell, even a little dirt on the floor, won’t hurt, right?

And then… we have another one, the most neglected of them all.

It’s called…

The Storeroom

A perfect place for hiding things… objects you don’t want others to see.

It’s usually full of junk all year round except during the festive season. Come to festivals, such as Diwali, and you give it a thorough cleaning.

You know what happens when you get down to clean it, don’t you?

You start gasping for breath as soon as you enter it, “My gosh! Is something dead in here?” Your head starts spinning, you feel like puking, and you wonder where the hell you should start.

Essentially, your mind is also like a house with different rooms meant for various purposes.

You want to impress people with your smile and jolly good nature, so you flaunt them openly. And whatever you don’t want others (or yourself) to see, you dump that in the dark corners of your mind.

So, all the repressed negative emotions—sadness and depression and guilt and anxiety and frustration, they’re all trapped in the dark prison of your mind. And they’re desperate to get the hell out. They are waiting for you to open the door, for years or maybe… lives.

And that’s what meditation is all about:

Letting the suppressed emotions out so you could unburden yourself.

(By the way, I’ve heard people saying meditation is not about emptying the mind. Well, they must be confusing meditation with something else. Maybe with concentration.)

Now, the question arises, if meditation is not for everyone, then why do so many people boast about the peace it has brought to them?

In other words…

Are the People Who Swear by Meditation, Lying?

Not necessarily.

Let me explain.

Imagine having a party at your place till late at night on a Sunday.

Now, visualize how your house looks after the party: Empty beer bottles on the table and half-eaten soggy pizza in a ketchup-smeared cardboard box, and dishes smeared with oil lying in the sink—stinking like hell.

What a mess!

And then, on Monday morning:

You overslept, woke up startled, and rushed to your office.

Now, since it was a Monday—the first day of the week, it was unforgivingly hectic. You somehow finished the work at the office and headed back to your apartment with just one thought crossing your mind… crashing onto the bed and getting some sleep. But the moment you open the door, you’re hit with the reality:

The ugly mess was staring right into your face (surprise, surprise).

“Where the hell did this mess come from? Oh!… the party last night.”

“Shit!”

At this moment, you really don’t have the energy to do the cleaning. And so, you take the shortcut. You shove in the empty bottles and cardboard boxes and every other piece of trash under the bed and go to sleep—with a smile on your face.

The living room looks clean enough, at least for now. But for how long? Sooner or later, you’ll have to clean the room thoroughly.

There’s no other way.

So, that’s precisely the case with people meditating for 10, 20, or 30 minutes a day. The “peace” they experience is the effect of pushing the already suppressed emotions deeper into the basements of their minds.

Obviously, it gives them a sense of accomplishment and the illusion that everything is alright, but is it?

And for how long?

See the point?

Now, let me elaborate a little more to clarify.

What is Meditation, Exactly?

Dhyana (meditation—for the lack of a better word) is the most precious gift Hindus have given to the world.

And it means watching…

Watching helps you empty your mind.

And how do you do that?

Well, you stay alert, and you watch your thoughts, feelings, and emotions.

In other words, instead of being the “Karta,” (Doer) you become a “Sakshi” (Witness).

No judging, no condemning, and no controlling.

You don’t say, “This thought is good. I should have more of it.” Also, you don’t try to get rid of the thoughts you consider bad.

You just watch.

In fact, you stay aloof—you become a witness to your mind, a Sakshi to whatever is going inside. This witnessing, this Sakshi Bhava lets the repressed, tangled, and messed-up emotions leave your mind for good.

So, meditation is about emptying your mind. It’s about quieting the mind, not by force, but by watching.

But, remember: You need first to love yourself and then watch. That’s critical!

Because if you tried watching your mind without first loving yourself, you’re sure to fail. Who wants to watch something ugly, nasty, and despicable? Only if you love yourself can you witness your mind in totality.

So, here’s the essence of meditation:

Love yourself and watch your mind. 

And before you love yourself and start watching your thoughts and emotions, here’s something that needs your attention.

Why Meditation is Not Working for You?

Starting with 10 minutes of meditation is a good thing… if you’ve cleared your mind of the majority of repressed emotions before meditating.

You see, watching is a passive technique, and it works. But only after you’ve cleared the major portion of what needs to be released. In other words, only after you’ve prepared the ground for real meditation.

And how do you do that?

Enter: Dynamic meditation.

Dynamic Meditation also known as Active Meditation, is a therapy to help you release your “steam” so you can sit and watch. In fact, unless you pass through Dynamic meditation, nothing’s gonna happen. It doesn’t matter how many years you meditate. Rather, things will get worse for you.

Why so?

Because sitting directly in passive meditation (watching) is like starting your car, sitting in front of the steering wheel, and pressing the accelerator without ever shifting the gear. No matter how many hours you sit in there, the car will never move.

Why Dynamic Meditation?

“But why can’t I just directly watch? What’s wrong with sitting in meditation from today? Why waste time with something else?”

Well, let me put it this way:

Suppose you need to clean your overhead water tank (which is full of dirty, stinky water) (and has a capacity of 10K liters). Now, of course, you can use an injection syringe to drain the water out but would that work? There’s every possibility that the syringe may get blocked—forever!

Wouldn’t it be wiser first to clear the majority of the water using a high-horsepower motor? And once it is done, even a small mug or glass would do the trick with the rest of it.

That’s exactly why you need Dynamic meditation first.

Once you’re through with it (at least for some months), you can sit in meditation and watch your thoughts without much discomfort.

There was a time when you could directly start watching your mind and get successful at it, but not anymore.

The reason is that the “modern man” is so messed up that releasing the toxic emotions and entanglements and all that “steam” that’s troubling you is the only way. Otherwise, it’ll be like shoving the trash under your bed so you can’t see it. But it still exists, right?

So, how do you practice dynamic meditation?

Well, you can watch a video with Dynamic meditation instructions below.

 

Or, you may read the instructions here.

So, let’s say you’ve practiced Dynamic meditation and you feel ready for watching (passive meditation). Will meditation work for you now?

I really wish I could say yes.

Why Doesn’t Meditation Work for Everyone? What Are the Dangers of Meditation?

But, unfortunately, even after doing everything, there can be no guarantee that meditation will give you peace of mind.

Why?

Because not everybody dares to face their repressed emotions simply because it’s hard work, it’s tiring, and it’s draining. Heck, it could be dangerous if you took it lightly. A guy (one of my classmates) took meditation for granted and see what happened:

“Avdhesh, you ruined my life.”

“What? How did I ruin your life?”

“I don’t know why meditation is not working for me anymore. You shouldn’t have got me into this meditation shit.  I mean, things went so wrong that I couldn’t focus on my studies, career, family, or anything else for that matter. And now I am all spaced out. You see, the only thing I have is confusion, and it’s all your fault.”

Well, I indeed introduced him to meditation, but not like I put a gun to his head, “Come on, you motherfucka, start meditating, or I’ll blow your brains out.”

Hell, no!

In fact, he attended many meditation camps on his own (without me having a clue), and then he discontinued abruptly (which is really dangerous).

“What’s the big deal? What if somebody stops meditating? I don’t understand why would stopping meditation be dangerous?” You ask.

Here’s why:

Meditation And The “Urge to Pee”

Imagine:

You’re stuck in a horrible traffic jam for the past 2 hours in the scorching heat of July.

Ridiculously high temperature, constant honking, drivers yelling at each other. ’nuff to make anybody go crazy, right? But the worst is yet to come, which is…

You’re dying to take a piss. (Oh, no!)

And there’s no way you can, at least not right now. Now tell me… can you feel the pressure building inside your bladder? It’s killing you like anything. In fact, every second seems like a lifetime, doesn’t it?

“I am screwed!” you are in agony.

But then… you notice Public Conveniences . . .  a couple of meters away.

Somehow, you move between the endless sea of vehicles—you pullover in a jiffy, and rush to the urinal to relieve yourself . . . Ah!. . It feels orgasmic. The pressure’s just right, the sensation is heavenly, and the flow is consistent (like a water stream flowing down a mountain).

What Happens When You Stop Meditating Abruptly?

Now…

Try stopping in between the ritual—don’t empty your bladder.

Stop, right fucking now!

See? You can’t even imagine it without feeling uneasy.

That’s pretty much what this guy did. He started meditating, and his repressed emotions—the frustration, the anxiety, the hatred—started jumping out of the basement (the storeroom) of his mind. And then, all of a sudden, he slammed the door in their faces. Now, they’re banging on the door: “Let us out, you idiot!”

He’s screwed for the rest of his life.

You may wonder why I chose this silly “pee” analogy.

Well, to warn you if you started meditating and then stopped abruptly (because you couldn’t bear the filth coming out of your mind), you’re most likely to find yourself in a really tight spot. And guess what? Then you shall curse the day you started meditating.

So I don’t really care who recommended meditation to you. It’s your responsibility to understand that it is easy to get into meditation but impossible to stop it in the middle and remain “normal.”

Agony or ecstasy, bliss or frustration, peace or turmoil—only you will be responsible for whatever happens.

Why Meditation Doesn’t Work? (And Why It Is Not for Everyone):

Are you willing to put every damn thing at risk for attaining peace of mind? Even your life?

Why did I ask?

Because in meditation, you’ll pass through hell (and I mean it) before you can even get a glimpse of heaven. Are you up for that?

Not ready yet? Don’t want to? Perfectly alright. It’s your life, and you have the right to do whatever you want to do with it.

The truth is, only the people willing to stake their minds (and sometimes even their lives) should consider going into deep meditation. So, be clear about it.

Because once you’re in, there’s no turning back!

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