Can meditation induce greater self consciousness?

I've been meditating (vipassana) for a little over two years. The benefits I've achieved have far outweighed the negatives.

What possible negatives can be inflicted by meditation, you may ask. Well, often I'm aware of being conscious - not of consciousness, but of myself. This can often feel very heavy and intense. Am I doing something wrong? Is there something I can do to become more conscious and less self-conscious?

My own answer to this is that I must have a very strong and negative self (ego) that is taking time to become fully aware of (not just during meditation sessions). I have always been one of those people who think way too much, analysing everything. Although, since meditating, this has lessened.

Thanks for your answers.

10 Answers

  • Betsy
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    It doesn't seem like you are doing anything wrong. Rather it seems you are getting results, you now are becoming more aware of the difference between being aware and not aware.

    Might there be some confusion on which aspect is the real or source of you? You say you are aware of being conscious, of yourself (not of unconsciousness) and it feels very heavy and intense. If you mean heavy and intense, such as negative and unwanted and feeling crappy, then it must be you are noticing how it feels to be as the talking/emoting self, unconsciousness, or ego. If rather you mean by heavy and intense, that it feels like you are falling into a deep sleep, or you have the feeling of losing yourself in a cloud of strong energy, having nothing to hang onto which is familiar, then this can be a sign of your source self, consciousness emerging. It is normal that fear is felt the first few times this phenomena happens, but also it feels blissful, not heavy and not intense. This is because it happens when you are totally quiet in mind and emotions, thus at the exact moment it happens there are no qualities, such as heavy and intense. It is usually fear of losing the 'old self' or 'old way', that takes one out of the quiet blissful feeling.

    To transform, to raise awareness and go beyond your personality it needs a big ego, because this is the source of energy, that is used to fuel the transition. The bigger the ego, the easier it is to see when it arises and takes over and becomes the predominant energy, meaning one is lost in the old acting mode and has lost presence. So see a big ego, as beneficial, as something that can help you detect for sure when you are and when you are not.

    I come from background of analyzing everything too, it's a good challenge to go beyond, perfect for you, exactly what you need. So it seems to me your challenge is to become better at discerning when you are truly quiet and when you are not, and what qualities or symptoms does it present in your body when in the two different states. Learning to tell the difference between them, by observing what you can see, can be your beacon in the dark.

  • Don't worry, continue to meditate. Twice a day for about twenty minutes is enough. Do it in the morning and in the evening, every day!

    That beside the benefits you see a negative result coming from it, shows that you have certain expectations, be aware of it and then drop this. Of course you have a strong personality like every body and you are involved in a game with yourself, - like every body. You can't yet be aware of it, but this will come in its time. It has lessened as you say, just give yourself space...

    You are practicing your meditation for about two years so it would be good that you let check your meditation from some body who knows how to do it. If you don't have anybody, then I can do it. The easiest at the moment is that you watch my video about meditation:

    "Just do it!" at YouTube:

    Youtube thumbnail

    If you have any question about it, you can email me.

    You are probably doing nothing wrong. It is just a fact that 'growing' is causing disturbance on various levels and it would be useful if you have enough information about it. You need to know about 'human nature' and what can cause that reactions are showing up, that are mostly defense reactions because the personality doesn't want to change and is using all kind of tricks, so it is good to know about it not to fall into the trap to be too much involved...

    There are certain steps to be taken depending where you are in your growing and learning process. I have written quite a lot about this and I suggest that you go to my 'Answers' here at Yahoo and read about it.

    You are becoming aware of yourself and at the same time you become aware of your background conditioning, clearing this up and with this the identification with your reactions that are caused from your unconscious background. This is a 'healing process' and needs your engagement, what indeed some time feels heavy and intense. But as you are becoming sovereign and not dependent on conditions, so you can manage this.

    That you are able to express yourself and ask questions is important and shows that you are on the 'path' and I hope that could help you with it.


  • 1 decade ago

    I am not an expert in meditation techniques, but most probably you are not doing anything wrong.

    We cannot get rid of self consciousness, as that is all we have.

    Our inherent nature dictates that we only focus on ourselves, we cannot leave our own little bubble behind.

    And meditation is the most intense self focusing activity we can do.

    If we truly desire to leave our self love/self centered ego behind we need to use a different technique, a practical method, which can help us to focus on others as well, and to achieve true connection between ourselves and other people.

    Why would we want to do that?

    Because this is our purpose, this is what makes us human, our true and correct connection to our fellow human beings.

    Here is a short interview clip on the kabbalistic perspective on internal observation:

    I hope it helps, all the best.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Having a strong and capable self is part of being a normal human being. Meditation really has nothing to do with "getting rid" of the self or ego. It can be, among many things, a way to learn how to dismiss the incessant chatter of the self, a phenomenon that can be quite annoying.

    You will probably not "achieve" any significant "break-throughs" by meditating, but at least you won't be out robbing banks or something equally destructive. Sometimes an empty lot is the most valuable property in a busy city.

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  • Zag
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    Unless we have a personal teacher then it is can be hard to get insight into the difficulties that we experience on our path...

    From my own experience, i would suggest that if you are finding that you are a bit stuck with the meditation practise, then maybe take a bit of time out and have a rest from it, and do some reading about it instead... then you can come back to it afresh, with a fresh pair of eyes, which can be very helpful...

    Sometimes i find that i get into habits with my practise and think that i'm doing things right, but then when i take some time out, i come back to it with fresh eyes and am able to notice the subtle places where i can improve my practise.

    I also find it helps to occasionally read a new book about about Buddhism or meditation practice... and to take some relaxing time to read it and see if there is anywhere where i might be going wrong with the meditation.

    You say you are doing 'vipassana'...

    so I think that means that you practise mindfulness...

    During sessions of mindfulness practise, you can turn your attention to whatever sensations come to mind and accept your experience without being critical of it or judging it...

    So i would suggest that you do exactly this with your 'heavy and intense' sensations during some periods of mindfulness...

    Acknowledge, accept and allow yourself to experience whatever comes into your consciousness... without judging.

    you could try this out as part of your meditation practise...

    The more you try to reject the sensations, or to try to escape from them, the bigger they will get...

    So allow yourself to just 'be' what you are.

    I'm learning myself, and find it very confusing at times...

    hope that helps,

    good luck.

  • 1 decade ago

    I was reading an article somewhere about people who meditate or pray a lot. Turns out there are darkened areas (low activity) in the areas of the brain which produce a sense of self, particularly the occipital lobe.

    Google this: Meditation and Brain Function

  • 1 decade ago

    I think you may be doing a little bit too much meditation, for now. Perhaps you need to do more things, in order to have something to reflect on during meditation. Idle hands are the devils tools, right? Use that meditation times, working at yourself, to do some good on this earth, for awhile, instead. I think it is your time to physically act out your meditated thoughts. If done right, this should change your envisionment of self, to a positive outlook because of what you have done. Do not dwell on your past negative experiences either...

    That's just my thoughts though...

    I rarely meditate. I feel as though it is a waste of time. However, I do understand the positive things that can come out of it. It helps me to ease my mind when things in life get hectic. To me, the positives of meditation, rarely outweigh the loss of time spent meditating though. You might say I'm impatient, but I do get things done...

    Best of luck to you!

    Source(s): Death is certain... Life is not...
  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    It all depends to whom are you meditating to. Are you meditating on God's word? If not then you open the door for demon possession. Be careful.

  • .
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    i too have spent boring times trying to open my mind properly - I almost dislike the end of my own nose i've spent that long trying to look through it to bring the 'open hollow mind' i'm almost sick of it sometimes

    i don't have any answers - it's trickier when you deliberately try than it is other times whe you simply are mediatating without trying . All I can say is you're not alone in struggling sometimes but as you say any struggle here is worth the peace it brings .

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Eww, why would you want to do that.

    And the answer is yes.

    Wait till you get beyond self realization, that is when it gets...unpleasant so to speak.

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