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5 Meditation Mistakes to Avoid at All Costs
Author Acharya Prashant
Acharya Prashant
6 min
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How many hours do you spend meditating each day?

How many hours do you spend meditating each day?

This is a trick question!

Whether you are “meditating” one hour per day or six, you are not truly meditating. This is because meditation is not something you do to escape life. Meditation is a way of life.

Meditation is to love peace with all your heart... so much so that nothing can disturb you. Nothing can tempt your ego to argue. Nothing can distract you nor successfully tempt you to leave your tranquility.

Are you feeling frustrated? Perhaps you feel like there must be more to meditation than a temporary relief from an anxious and stressful existence.

Please carefully consider these 5 common mistakes people make while attempting to meditate. This is the way to grow and get ever closer to a peaceful life 24/7.

  1. Beware This Common Self-Delusion -----------------------------------

Beware This Common Self-Delusion

If you are meditating to feel good, then you are just deceiving yourself.

That which you call mediation is a tool, is a method. It is a short-lived method to bring you the taste of the beyond.

Understand this and you become ready for greater fulfillment.

  1. Breathing Technique Is Merely the Beginning ----------------------------------------------

Breathing Technique Is Merely the Beginning

Maybe watching your breath is a nice way to avoid watching that which really needs to be watched.

You need to watch your behavior with your wife. Instead of that you are watching your breath. Nice trick, smart chap!

What is all this drama about watching the breath, observing the breath?

You want to avoid watching your real life, your day-to-day life. So you go for a 10-day Vipassana retreat.

That continues the spiritual lie. Now I can go back to my shop and continue adulterating and looting.

All techniques give you a glimpse of something. They give you a glimpse so that they fall in love with the glimpse. And you demand more. You must demand more.

  1. Stop Being a Watchman ------------------------

Stop Being a Watchman

Attention is not about keeping an eye on yourself. Attention is about being an attendant to the Truth.

There are many whose mind has been silenced by incessant practice of techniques, but that silent mind is still a bereaved mind, it is still a stupid mind. You are silently grieving.

Real silence comes when you have consummated with the lover. After that you go off to sleep.

Techniques of meditation by themselves do not mean anything.

It is a thing of the heart. It cannot be cultivated.

Attend to the love. That is attention.

  1. How to Defeat Distractions While Meditating ----------------------------------------------

How to Defeat Distractions While Meditating

A better practice would probably be to ask “Why does this sound or so-called distraction matter to me at all?”

And why are a few sounds not significant to me? That’s a question that will tell you something about the nature of your mind, your constitution of your inner Prakriti (nature).

And this knowledge helps. Ego that starts knowing itself does not remain charmed by itself for too long.

A point might come when no sound matters so much to you that it pushes you to ask “From where is the sound, to whom is the sound” because even asking these questions is a chore, an unnecessary activity.

If you keep respecting all the wrong things, how will you ever fall in love with restfulness?

If you are respecting all the sources and agents of trouble and worry and anxiety, then how will you ever respect the right one?

The right one says “I will have all your respect or nothing.” You cannot give me divided attention.

  1. Meditation Is Not a Way to Withdraw From Daily Life ------------------------------------------------------

Meditation Is Not a Way to Withdraw From Daily Life

Mostly the kind of meditation that we practice is ornamental. It really does not address the core problem.

You must ask yourself, “Is your meditation really challenging the real bondages of your life?”

Or is meditation just a small thing in a small part of your life, very distant from, very removed from the part of your life where strong bondages actually exist.

A lot of times, what we call as spiritual practice exists just so that we don’t have to address the real problem. Addressing the real problem requires guts and faith.

And it’s not as if we are so naïve that we do not know what the real issue is. But we fail to summon the courage and the faith to take the bull by its horns. We would rather meditate.

That is also why meditation has to be a constant and unending thing. It cannot be a 1-hour thing in the morning. Because one is being challenged 24 hours. Therefore the right response to challenges, meditation, has to be continuous.

Meditation is Meant to Rid Man of His Slavery

Real meditation is the courage to let life change. If you keep meditating without allowing life to change, this meditation is merely self-deception.

And when I say life must change, I’m not talking about something imaginary, I’m talking of something very tangible. I’m talking of your relationships, your job, your house, your surroundings, your attitudes, your ideology, that’s what your life is, no?

If these things aren’t changing, if your relationship with your kids and your neighbors are not changing, if your dietary habits are not changing, if the way you spend money is not changing, if the ways you look at the universe, and the monkeys and the fish are not changing, of what point is meditation?

5 more common mistakes are discussed by Acharya Prashant here.

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