Sensing energy during meditation

August 4, 2008

Recently I’ve received a number of emails from people asking about feeling energy in various ways while meditating. People have reported things like a feeling of energy flowing and tingling.  One person said it felt like water on the top of his head at the crown chakra with a sense of a slow circular motion under the skull while doing the chakra meditation. Sometimes people have these experiences outside of meditation as well.

There are lots of reasons why people ask about this. Some people may feel uncomfortable because they don’t understand these experiences. Others are simply curious about them, or interested in subtle energies. It can be helpful to understand our experiences in meditation, not only so that we can be comfortable with them but also to integrate them into our understanding of ourselves. Meditation is, among other things, an exploration of oneself. So I thought I’d explore this a little here.

If you don’t have these experiences in meditation, doesn’t matter. You can still enjoy the benefit of meditation on all levels. If you don’t care about these experiences or even believe in them, fine.  Some people do, some don’t.  This is for those of you who are curious about such things.

I like to keep things simple and not get too esoteric about these experiences.  The bottom line on all of them is that during meditation we can sense subtle energies in the body (or even in the energy field around the body). That happens because during meditation our awareness can go to deeper levels.  We can feel subtle energies that we normally don’t notice.  In addition, some meditations can open up our energies so that they start to flow more freely.

Whether you are experiencing these energies as moving or still, flowing through the body or in one area, tingly or liquid, and so on isn’t important.  What’s important is simply to understand that this is a natural experience as these energies are enlivened and as we open up to noticing them.

Sometimes people start to focus on the energetic sensations, wanting to control them or magnify them.  My advice is to treat them like thoughts, not paying any special attention to them.  Just continue the meditation, not minding the sensations.  Let them go the way they naturally go.  In this way you are trusting the wisdom of the body as it adjusts itself and comes into more balance.  Let the natural intelligence of the body do it’s work rather than trying to manipulate the energies from your side. That way things will unfold in a more balanced way.

Please feel free to share any of your experiences and ask questions about them on this blog.  I may be able to give more specific answers to specific experiences.

Note: What I say here refers to experiences while listening to our guided meditations on the podcast or our CDs.  It may or may not apply to experiences during other meditation practices.

Related Post: Body Movements in Meditation


141 Responses to “Sensing energy during meditation”

  1. narsimha rao on August 19th, 2008 1:41 am


  2. claire on August 28th, 2008 2:03 am

    What happens to our energy during meditation?

  3. Mary on August 28th, 2008 8:38 am

    Hi Claire,
    We are energetic beings — everything is energy. That includes our attention, which is like a beam of energy. When our attention is directed in different ways during meditation, it affects how our energy flows.

    In some of our meditations, we have a focus like the chakras or the body. In the chakra meditation, for example, more energy will flow through the chakra where we are directing our attention. In the body awareness meditation, we energize our body by having our attention on it.

    In many of our meditations, for example Simply Being or Letting Go, we are simply allowing the attention to relax. Rather than being focused on planning, analyzing and evaluating, the attention becomes unfocussed. This allows for a deep relaxation and in that our energy can be used for rejuvenation. The natural intelligence of the body-mind directs the energy where its needed to release tension and create more balance.

    You’ve asked a question that could have many meanings and answers. The most meaningful answers are those you find as you pay attention to your own experience and arrive at your own observations. I hope these answers will help with your exploration.

  4. Tama on September 3rd, 2008 1:50 pm

    When I have really gotten into a meditation in the past, I occasionally ‘suffer’ from feeling like my entire body is rising up and sometimes, turning around and upside down in space. Sometimes its just my head and I could swear I’ve turned my head on its side…its really distracting. I feel like I have to ‘come back’ and make sure my body is not strangely positioned in real space.

    Today for the chakra meditation, I noticed the left side of my body kept slipping to the left (like sand eroding at the beach), but just for the base, throat, and crown chakra.

  5. Mary on September 4th, 2008 9:30 am

    Hi Tama,

    Sometimes people do experience these kinds of effects when meditation gets very deep. You can feel like your body is moving or tilting — all sorts of things. During deep meditation the body has the opportunity to balance itself. In terms of energy, the energy begins to shift and can be experienced in that way. If it isn’t uncomfortable or distressing, you can just “take it as it comes”. It’s better not to focus on these feelings. Instead focus on the meditation itself. Treat these sensations like thoughts, just letting them go.

    If, however, it becomes very strong and is distressing, you can open your eyes to bring your awareness out and this will usually stop these feelings. You can also stretch and move around to get more “grounded” and feel your true orientation in space.

  6. Jerry on September 17th, 2008 2:14 am

    I love Meditation Oasis. I have been able to find peace within myself and have found myself. I am also able to sleep and I love the out of body experience.

  7. Mary on September 17th, 2008 9:33 am

    How wonderful, Jerry. Thanks for stopping by.

  8. Ashton on September 18th, 2008 4:18 pm

    Well first off I’m 15, so my mind is pretty creative, but when I first meditated that’s all i felt is tingles. I loved it, it wasn’t wierd, I thought it was normal to everyone, It felt great, I thought THAT was what meditation was…
    I barely meditate cause it’s hard to get the focus in on this “energy feeling” but when i meditate I think about feeling this energy and taking deep breaths ready for it, and I find out… so much more… I think what most people do is a thing called “mental meditation” I don’t know if that’s real or not but I go into a “physical meditation” with energy. From that I have honestly learned about my body, and I’ve only had 3 good energy meditations. But more and more comes up after you do it again and again. I connected to an energy feeling in my stomach and it was the wierdest coolest feeling ever. THe next time i meditated i connected to the energy and the feeling in my stomach spread into my whole body! I thought it was amazing… I’m just saying I have never really done a mental sit there meditation. I love feeling the energy!

    (If some of that didn’t make sense I’m sorry, I can’t really explain my thoughts, it’s hard :)

  9. Mary on September 19th, 2008 9:30 am

    Hi Ashton,
    Here some thoughts in response to what you shared.

    It is difficult to explain the experience of sensing energy. It’s easy to describe seeing a table, but not so easy to describe the perception of subtle energy.

    Sounds like you’ve developed your own way to meditate by focusing on the energy that you are sensing. What you put your attention on grows, so as you put your attention on your energy it spread, as you described.

    Although you call it a “physical meditation” because you are focused on your body (or your energy), it does actually involve the mind. So in a way it is a mental meditation. Meditation always involves the mind and how we focus our attention.

    It sounds like you are meditating for the experience in meditation. You enjoy “feeling the energy”. I’m wondering what you feel as a result of the meditation. Many people also meditate for the benefits meditation gives.

    Thanks for sharing your experience!

  10. Michael Peters on September 19th, 2008 10:49 am

    Many times when I meditate, I feel a sort of blocked or stuck energy just above my belly, and it just doesn’t go away.

    It doesn’t feel pleasant, and it doesn’t let me relax. What do you think this is and how would you solve it?

  11. Mary on September 19th, 2008 11:34 am

    Hi Michael,
    I’m not sure if you are having this experience with our guided meditations or some other form of meditation. If you not using our meditations, please try a few (which are free to listen to through our podcast) and see if that helps.

    If this is happening with our meditations, then it sounds like perhaps you are resisting that stuck energy or trying to make it go away. You may be focusing too much attention on it and getting mentally involved with it (as in “oh there that is again, I don’t want it, when will it go away”). It should be possible to be relaxed even when some unpleasant energy or pain or strong emotion is present. Just let it be there and continue to easily favor the focus of the meditation. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying “what we resist persists”.

    Chances are if you simply allow it to be there, it will eventually resolve on its own. Occasionally there could be some very deep energetic block which could take more time to resolve. Some energy work modalities like Reiki can sometimes help.

  12. Ashton on September 21st, 2008 5:49 pm

    Of course you’re right, it is always a mental meditation, but I’m just saying, when I get into the state and I do things like… fighting or something. I learn more from it, like, movements of circular energy with motion, and in the end results I’ve become stronger happier, and so on, so forth.

    It probably is an energy blockage honestly, something like that. When you meditate and you feel it’s pain, try to focus on the healing of the pain… It will help :) Don’t try to block it out you know, just let it heal…

    But yeah, this is a nice place to talk to people about these things… I even see energy during the day. If you meditate, you should be able to look in the sky in a wierd way and see little dots or something? Do you see that? Some do, some don’t, at night it’s intense.

  13. Mary on September 22nd, 2008 9:08 am

    Obviously you have an ability to sense energy, Ashton. You might be interested in our other website, A couple days ago someone left a comment about seeing energy in the air that sounds a lot like your experience — here’s the link:

  14. Ashton on September 22nd, 2008 6:17 pm

    Thanks Mary, I’ll go check it out…

  15. Dan | Seiza Benches on October 14th, 2008 1:57 pm

    Interesting post. I believe I have sensed the energy you are referring to, but it only started happening when I learned to straighten my back. I could not get my back straight enough in a half-lotus position, and I felt like I was constantly fighting tipping over during meditation. Then I tried sitting in seiza with a seiza bench, and it helped immensely.

  16. Mary on October 14th, 2008 2:08 pm

    Hi Dan,
    Different things will work for different people. Sensing energy has to do with the mind being able to settle down and experience subtler levels of perception. Certainly feeling like you are about to topple over or being in any sort of position which is uncomfortable or distracting would inhibit this settling down of the mind.

    Generally speaking sitting upright with the spine relatively erect would favor an alert mind and subtle perception, but I’ve heard from people who sense energy even while lying down.

  17. Dona Attygalle on November 5th, 2008 9:57 pm

    I have started meditation about 3 months ago. Recently I get a tingling sensation that becomes kind of tightens up between my eyebrows. It feels as if a rod has been placed between the back of my head and the forehead. One day while I was meditating I saw this flash of a white/yellowish light, just like a powerful beam from a torch into my left eye. I have started getting headaches too. Can you please explain what this is?
    I have come across a phenomenon called “opening of the third eye” while I was tring to find answers. I scared. Do I have to stop meditation? Please help me.
    Thank you,
    In anticipation,
    Dona Attygalle (from New Zealand)

  18. Mary on November 6th, 2008 10:52 am

    Hi Dona,
    Without knowing what kind of meditation you are doing, it’s difficult to comment or advise you. I can say a few things in general about your experience.

    During meditation, energy pathways can open up and in that you are experiencing these sensation at the location of the 6th chakra, it’s like that meditation is stimulating and awakening that center. Sometimes these openings can be rather dramatic and it can be helpful to slow the process down by meditating less or even backing off of meditation for awhile. It would help if you worked with a meditation teacher and guide as you go through this experience.

    Headaches can come as a result of straining during meditation. Again, it’s difficult to comment without knowing what you are doing as you meditate.

  19. Dawn on November 18th, 2008 6:26 pm

    Thank you for the availability of your podcasts. I began meditating regularly about a month ago. I initially had some resistance in grounding, but today as I was doing the Chakra Balancing meditation you offer I had an alarming reaction. Everything was fine until I got to my throat chakra and became overwhelmed with the feeling of nausea and dizziness. I had to lay down (I usually meditate while sitting on my yoga blocks). Could you help me understand this since I am new to this and I don’t really understand the chakras.
    Thank you so very much.

  20. Mary on November 19th, 2008 10:23 am

    You are welcome, Dawn.

    For general information about the chakras, you can check out our Heart of Healing website chakra pages.

    As for your experience with the Chakra Meditation — when you put your attention on a particular chakra, it wakes it up or energizes it. The increased energy flowing through the chakra can produce all sorts of effects as it creates shifts in energy. We may have experiences that are specifically related to a particular chakra or there may be some purification as energy blocks are removed.

    The nausea and dizziness at the throat chakra could be related to some cleansing or purification. Also, since nausea and dizziness can accompany anxiety, it’s possible that the opening of the throat chakra produced some fear. It’s hard to say exactly what happened. I’m not sure what you mean by having resistance in grounding, and whether that is also related to what happened.

    Usually these experiences are short-lived. If it continues to happen, you might want to seek guidance from someone experienced with meditation and the chakras.

  21. Jeremy on January 5th, 2009 9:11 am

    I have been meditating off and on for the last three years. My primary form of meditation is Vipassana but I am very interested in the meditations on this site. My issue is this: every time I meditate, every single time, I feel a tingling, electric energy that begins in my belly, rises quickly through my shoulders and head, and shakes my entire body. My body actually shakes as the energy passes. The sensation itself is quite pleasurable, and after the energy passes, I feel pleasantly expanded, almost like I am floating.

    As I meditate more often, I have begun to feel this sensation at fairly random points during the day when I am sitting quietly. Also, I now remember that I have felt this sensation before, years ago, before I started meditating. Usually the sensation would occur when I was out in nature, in the forest or by a river, sitting quietly, observing the natural world. In a way, this sensation is what led me to meditation.

    I am currently considering the significance of this sensation in my meditation practice. Any thoughts? Thank you for your concern and for this site.

  22. Mary on January 5th, 2009 10:29 am

    You are welcome, Jeremy. It sounds like your meditation actually started spontaneously in nature. I like to think of meditation more as a happening rather than a practice. A practice can set the stage for the happening, and we can learn to cooperate with it. Meditation started to happen for you in nature. I say this only to emphasize how natural meditation is.

    It is not uncommon for the body to shake during meditation. You are quite clear in your perception that energy is at work — starting in your belly and rising. Your life energy starts to move as you settle down in meditation. The deep relaxation and letting go of meditation allows your energy to move. When the energy moves, it may encounter some resistance or “blocks” and then the body shakes. It’s simply a release of some tension or block, and after that release you feel expanded. The expansion could be seen as the experience of the crown chakra being open as the energy moves up through it.

    As for the significance of this, I’m sure you could find some esoteric explanations, such as kundalini rising, but I like to keep things simple. Energy moves in meditation and as it moves it clears the “energy pathways”. It’s a natural evolutionary process.

    What sort of significance have you considered?

  23. Jeremy on January 6th, 2009 5:51 am

    Thank you, Mary. Your response is very helpful and reassuring. By significance, I simply mean that I’m not yet sure how to think about the energy sensation I’m feeling; is it a hindrance on my path to meditation, or not? I am almost to the point where I can bring about the sensation at will, and again, it feels quite pleasant, but I am sure that “pleasant sensations” are not the point of meditation, just a happy side effect.

  24. Mary on January 6th, 2009 11:04 am

    Yes, I would agree completely — pleasant sensations (great experiences and so on) are just a happy side effect. For that reason, I don’t pay much attention to them. As with thoughts, emotions and any experience in meditation, the idea is to not resist and also not to focus on them. (Although resisting and focusing will happen — we just have the intention to let that go when we notice.)

    Don’t see why the experience would be a hindrance unless you found it disturbing in some way. Sounds like you don’t and are just taking it in stride.

  25. Mickey on January 7th, 2009 5:29 am

    Hi My name is Mickey i have been meditating now for 11 months and have had many experiences and growth as a result of the practice. My chosen meditation style is guided meditation using new age music but I also occasionaly do solo meditation.

    As for my experiences, I have felt all the above described sensations like warmth, energy flows and blockages. Mine is at the back of my head and often can be perceived when I have been in deep meditation for over 40 min.

    One intriguing thing about me however is that two months after I began the practice a new faculty awakened in me. With practice now I am able to enter a visionary trance state and perceive imagery, scenes of all manner of nature. Some of it is mystical like and others are more of normal themes. I have even perceived music which was totally unknown to me using this ability. And I have also recently learned that I can only access this ability with ease when it has been preceeded by deep meditation. And I also sometimes randomly enter trance states during awakening at nights.

    Lastly frequently when I am just settling in to bed I have begun to percieve subtle green lights in my bedroom.

    What could all this mean?

  26. Mary on January 7th, 2009 11:04 am

    Hi Mickey,
    In deep meditation, our attention is withdrawn from the more superficial level of the mind with which we function in everyday life. At times we may be experiencing more subtle perceptions (we are, in a way, perceiving through more subtle aspects of the senses). In that way you might pick up on music, for example, that exists in more subtle “realms”. Or you may be perceiving something that is in another location since your mind is functioning on the level of deep intuition (in much the way that people experience extrasensory perception). This happens after meditation which allows the mind to reach these deeper levels.

    As for perceiving the subtle green lights, it sounds like you are beginning to perceive subtle energies visually outside of meditation. I don’t know what meaning green lights would have, if any.

    These are just possible explanations. I am not an expert on interpreting these experiences! It does sound like you are opening up to deep levels of experience. This can have a big effect on your day to day functioning and you want to be sure to stay “grounded” and not have too much open up at once.

  27. Mickey on January 7th, 2009 11:29 am

    Thanks for your comments very much appreciated.

    On the subject of my visions I feel like in these last few months especially I have gained good control other my trance state. I can now induce it at will most of the time, and quickly learned what state I needed to be in for successful trance induction. I now also understand that it posseses great potential for me. I am going to base my art on what I have seen. And even more funny I also see it as a means to get answers to my life. On two occasions for example, while in a trance state I became aware of unfamiliar voices. They had a gentleness about them and later came to inform me of the things which would open up to me if I learned to use the ability of astral projection (I used to practice OOB induction).

    And as for the lights as well as seeing green energy like patterns in my room at rest, my colour and light sensitivity also increased earlier this year and I have also begun to recently perceive the different wavelenghts of light emanating from light sources. By this I mean you know that visible light is made up of different wavelengths which present themselves as the colours of the rainbow. Well I can now see the different fractions of energy in many light sources. I find it so bizzare that this degree of perception is unoticeable to most peoples eyes yet present at the same time.

    I read an article recently which talked about meditation bringing previously dormant aspects of the brain into focus and also when practiced for a long period can allow for the emergence of supraliminal abilities better known in eastern tradition as ‘Siddhis’. I don’t know how much you know about this subject but siddhis are what many unusual abilities like ESP, Telekinesis which many people do not believe exist actually stem from. Maybe these new faculties opening up to me are also a form of this.

    Anyways Sorry for going on a bit, it’s just that meditation has brought many changes into my life and I wanted to share some of this info.

  28. Mary on January 7th, 2009 2:43 pm

    You certainly are opening up new faculties — that’s evident! This could definitely be considered the development of siddhis. You might want to check out Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras in this regard.

    Once you begin to perceive subtle energies, it does indeed seem bizarre that most people are not noticing them. I think of this as a kind of culturally conditioned “selective perception”.

    You might also be interested in the work of Duane Packer and Sanaya Roman (“DaBen” and “Orin”) as a way of developing some of these abilities further. Although you are certainly doing quite well on your own and it may be that your own self-discovery and interpretation will be the most valuable for you.

    Best wishes.

  29. Mickey on January 8th, 2009 1:29 pm


  30. billy on January 9th, 2009 12:15 pm

    During meditation sessions in the last few months I have experienced a build up of energy in the throat area. This feels like a swelling in the whole of my neck and my head begins to move or appears to move gently of its own accord in flow with the energy. My head can reach extreme positions but this is not unpleasant as it feels very much supported by the energy, which seems to have a life of its own.
    I would like to know if anyone has had this experience and if it indicates anything in particular.


  31. Mary on January 9th, 2009 4:15 pm

    Hi Billy,
    I talk a bit about movements in meditation, as you can see above in my Jan. 5 response to Jeremy. I’ve had people ask me about this from time to time, so I’m going to do a blog post on this.

    During the deep relaxation of meditation, energy can start to shift and move in the body’s energy field. As the energy moves, it may hit some “blocks” in the energy pathways and the energy starts to move those blocks to clear a path for itself. As you said, the energy has a life of its own.

    Perhaps some others will share their experiences with movements in meditation as well. This has certainly happened to other people. I’ll go into more detail in my new blog post.

  32. billy on January 10th, 2009 3:08 am

    Thanks for your comments Mary.
    I will continue to observe these sensations, the body movements are certainly a real occurance unlike other sensations I have had during the meditation process, such as levitation. On occasion I have had a wonderful feeling of rising slowly as if floating gently upwards. This experience has always seemed so real but on opening my eyes my feet have always been firmly planted on the ground.
    Similarly, when falling asleep during meditation I have often had vivid dreams of rising out of my body. These experiences have sometimes been a bit scary as I fought to return to my body, and I usually wake up in a bit of a panic as I felt the sensation so strongly. During one of my dreams I had the sensation of returning with such a rush, with such force, that it left me trembling for some time afterwards. In addition I sometimes see oblong shapes circling me in an anti clockwise direction. Again these appear so real and I have the feeling of being very awake.

  33. Mary on January 10th, 2009 11:47 am

    You are welcome, Billy. When we fall asleep in meditation and start dreaming, the dreams can be especially vivid. Since we have fallen asleep in the midst of meditation, there’s more awareness of them than there might be when we’re asleep at night. All sorts of things can happen in dreams. I don’t attach any significance to dreams in meditation, and consider them all to be some sort of release or psychological processing.

    If you are having experiences in meditation that are uncomfortable or disturbing, you might consider meditating for less time or less often to slow things down.

  34. aaron on February 7th, 2009 12:15 pm

    I had an unusual experience this morning while meditating in my bed. I started to lose my consciousness and my mind started to drift into a dream. I caught myself before losing total consciousness and brought my awareness back to my third eye chakra. In doing so I felt an intense tingling move from my spine into my head. This energy caused my head to start moving unintentionally in a circular motion. My head continued to move in this manner for the rest of the meditation. Can you explain this phenomenon?

  35. Mary on February 8th, 2009 5:02 pm

    Hi aaron,
    To begin with, it sounds like you got into a very deep state and in that state directed your attention to the third eye chakra, thus activating it. Energy flows up and down your spine (often referred to as kundalini energy). When the energy flows more, in this case to your head, it can clear blocks in its path. You could think of the head movement as being the result of release of tension, or as happening as a by-product of the clearing of blocks to the energy. You can read about other peoples’ experiences with this sort of thing. Some comments about this are on this page, but many are on the Body Movements in Meditation post. I also talk about this type of phenomena in that post.

  36. Tina on February 17th, 2009 1:53 pm


    I am a recent beginner when it comes to meditation!
    I love everything I read about it and want to learn more all the time, I don’t really know if or what is a good way or bad way but I listen to an Angel CD with beautiful music and try to see through my 3rd eye. As I said I am just beginning this journey, but I get so far during my meditations and then I get afraid and open my eyes!

    I feel cold and warm feelings at times. I don’t seem to get very far and open my eyes as soon as I feel I see a yellowy light in my mind. I believe in Angels and would like to see my guardian angel but again, fear sets in and I open my eyes!!!

    Will I get over my fear with practice?


  37. Mary on February 17th, 2009 2:28 pm

    Hi Tina,
    I’m not sure what is causing the fear in your meditation, Tina. Sometimes emotions that have been suppressed come up during meditation. Sometimes fear can come up when you are new to meditation and there’s an experience (like the yellowy light your describe) that you don’t understand. I’m not familiar enough with what you are now doing to be sure what is happening.

    Try using the first meditation on our Podcast listening page (“Relaxation Break”) and see if the fear still comes up with that.

  38. Tina on February 18th, 2009 2:31 am

    Thanks Mary, I will continue to practice and hopefully get better in time! Used your one this morning and had no trouble, just felt a bit sick in my stomach but I am okay with that !

    Regards Tina

  39. Jacqueline on March 11th, 2009 6:44 pm

    First of all hello and hope the knowledge of universe appears itself to us…

    It’s about 14 years since I have started meditating for my first time. I haven’t continued it constantly…but every time after a while I feel some strange things are happening to me! Like feeling energy that I didn’t know what was it!Now it is 3 weeks I have just started it and feeling the floating energy everywhere especially on head and sometimes it drills some part of my head. Besides I can see or hear something specific not personal but universal… It doesn’t happen each time, but I think when I am ready to hear it happens and each time it opens new doors of knowlege to me that I haven’t decided about.

    I know that is not imagination because it happens only if I am so deep in my meditation, my body is very heavy and I am not in the place. I wonder if others have these intuitions? I know that there is an unconscious of universe that contains everything had happened,is happening and will happen in future and it has no time, it called the world of death…

    My energy increases every day and I feel it comes out of center of my head, which I know it’s one of the connecting sources. I don’t want to waste this energy. I really like to guide or to change it to other form maybe!

    As your information I do chigung sometimes and kung fu also. I really want to know if maybe you have such feelings …because I can’t meet people or read in books about that. Thank you for your generosity…

  40. Mary on March 12th, 2009 1:32 pm

    Hello Jacqueline,

    Other people do have similar experiences. You can read through more of the comments on this website to see what some other people say. It sounds like it would be helpful for you to have more information and understanding about what you are experiencing. I don’t know why you say your can’t meet people or read books about that, as I would probably recommend that you read some books on this subject. Of course you can always find more information on the internet.

    You might want to read about the human energy field and chakras — the chakras are doorways to experience and knowledge, both of ourselves and of the universe.

    Good luck!

  41. Stephanie on March 14th, 2009 11:01 am

    Hi there – just found your blog, which I will now explore in more depth….
    I’ve been trying unsucessfully to meditate for about 6 months now, on and off….trying to find a method that works (mostly a variation on sitting or kneeling, trying to focus on breathing, body scans etc.) . Today I’m so frustrated I could cry! when I read about all these wonderful experiences happening to other people only after a few sessions….NOTHING seems to happen in my case. At best, a feeling of relaxation, hands warming up (I suffer from cold hands/feet). At worst, like today, the inner music/thoughts just won’t simmer down, and I started to get extremely cold, especially in my hands and around my shoulders/neck, almost as if I’d walked into a refrigerator. 30 mins later and I’m still wearing an extra sweater and scarf…. I’m feeling like all these hours have been a waste of time, that I have some sort of “meditation disability” or something…. Have any of you “successful” meditators out there ever gone through this ? Thanks – end of rant!

  42. Mary on March 14th, 2009 12:16 pm

    Hi Stephanie, It sounds like you are trying to learn to meditate on your own and that can be extremely difficult and frustrating. I’m sure many people have experienced this. It’s not uncommon to struggle with meditation.

    You can use this website in a number of ways. There are meditation guidelines and a page about Difficulty Meditating. Many visitors here have used our guided meditation podcast or CDs. An easy way to start with meditation is to use a guided meditation audio (providing you find the right style, voice, etc. for you).

    Some people have found that after having listened to our guided meditations, they can then meditate on their own. Others do better with a course if their goal is to meditate on their own. Our Online Course was especially designed to help people meditate easily from the beginning by meditating along with an audio, and through the course mastering the principles enough so that they can eventually do it alone.

    I’m sure you don’t have a “meditation disability” and all the hours you’ve spent have somehow been part of your path with meditation. Hopefully you’ll have smoother sailing from here on…

  43. Stephanie on March 15th, 2009 10:22 am

    Thanks a lot for your prompt response Mary….I realize my outburst was a bit “hormonal” 😉 which I guess, in itself, was an indication of something going on (at least on an emotional level) during yesterday’s aborted meditation session. It took me a surprisingly long time to settle down, very uncomfortable feelings and thoughts for hours afterwards. It only let up after I went to a yoga class, which got me both out of the house – and out of my head- for awhile . As you suggested, I find it relatively easy to relax and focus when I have an external guide ; the hard part has always been learning to get to that state on my own.
    I’m going to start listening to your podcasts today, fingers crossed!

  44. Renee on March 22nd, 2009 11:52 am

    Hi Mary – I came across this site today as I was researching some experiences I’ve been having when I meditate. I have a simple method of meditating – starting out with breathing in for 6 counts, holding for 3, then breathing out for 6 counts. I do this 6 times. I meditate for 15 minutes. I sit cross legged with my eyes closed. I’ve been meditating regularly (1 x a day) for about 6 months now.
    In nearly of of my meditations, I start to shake uncontrollably. I tend to just be with it and let it pass. After shaking for a little bit, I will be completely still. I assume this is just energy wanting to be released and be cleared from my body??
    One other experience I have occasionally is the flow of energy up into my head, very intense and then my eyes start to flutter and squint. I assume this is energy rising up to my crown chakra? I need the ability to release it. Do you know how this can be done? Any insight or help you can provide would be helpful.
    Thank you for your guidance.

  45. Mary on March 23rd, 2009 11:20 am

    Hi Renee,
    I can’t add much of an explanation beyond what I said in this post and in other comments. I’m hesitant to try to comment too much on someone’s experience as it is very difficult to assess without knowing more about someone, how they are meditating, and so on. What you describe sounds like kundalini energy. It’s a very powerful energy and can start to move on its own without any specific practice to make it move. I’ve always hesitated to try to manipulate it from my side — to make it move, try to release it, etc. Too much kundalini moving and hitting blocks can create problems, so my tendency would want to make sure I am staying grounded in my activity. Rather than trying to release it or manipulate it, I might back off and try to let the process slow down.

  46. Glenn on April 18th, 2009 5:26 am

    Hi Mary, I have been meditating for approx 7 years. For the past year or so, whenever I am in meditation, my left leg will spasm forcefully and frequently. It is a feeling of my leg being pulled away from my body. This is one heck of an energy block! I try not to put any attention on it, but it is difficult. I have tried many different sitting positions also. Some make it more bearable, but it is still hard to focus on my meditation. Is this something that I should be concerned about or should I just be patient and let it run it’s course?

  47. Mary on April 18th, 2009 8:48 am

    Hi Glenn, it’s always good to get something checked out medically, especially if you are also experiencing a problem with your leg outside of meditation. It could, of course, be an energy thing — it’s really hard to say. If it is, it might be that an energy work session (like Reiki, Healing Touch or Therapeutic Touch) would help the energy move through. Good luck with it.

  48. Glenn on April 20th, 2009 4:35 pm

    Thank you very much. How do I go about finding a good Reiki practitioner?

  49. Mary on April 21st, 2009 10:44 am

    Usually the best way is through referral from someone else. If you can’t get a referral, you can contact and ask questions of some practitioners in your area (if not advertising, check with massage therapists of often know Reiki). Ask them about their training — some had long training over months, others got the whole “master” training in a weekend. Ask about experience. The most important thing is to get a sense of the person, if you feel good about them and if they sound professional and so on.

  50. Mindy on May 7th, 2009 5:14 pm

    What I have experienced in the past year I can only describe as divine. I am a Catholic Christian. I first started noticed an energy in the palms of my hands when I would lift them during the Our Father in Mass. Eventually, I could feel this energy around me at will. I could ask questions, always addressing Jesus, and my head would nod back and forth–this began in intense prayer, and progressed to anytime. If I am in public, no one would notice the nodding. If I am alone, it’s more pronounced.

    Recently, I have gone even more deeply into prayer, asking Jesus for healing and to purify my body and soul. I also told him, I trust him and will completely submit to His will. The first time I asked for God to purify me and take away all evil, my entire convulsed, as if it was literally pushing negative energy out of my body. I could feel it pulling from above me. This went on for quite some time, before stopping.

    In the past week, my body has begun moving on its own. Keep in mind, I have asked for healing and strengthening. My hip had been hurting for almost a year, due to exercise. The pain is gone. I have asked Jesus if I should continue walking for exercise, and my head moves side to side as if to say no. Now, during meditation (which by the way, I can command in a matter of seconds–or communicate and get an answer that quickly) my body actually does strengthening exercises–the closest thing I can relate this to is yoga. It’s the perfect stretches and strengthening exercises–flawless. Keep in mind, I have never been to a yoga or meditation class in my life. My hand always end in prayer position. There are other really miraculous things that have happened to me–it’s if this presence is with me all the time, literally. It’s a little frightening, and I have to ask if this happens to other people, or am I possessed? I always pray prior to meditation that no evil is allowed, only God’s healing love.

    Help, if you can.

  51. Mary on May 8th, 2009 9:29 am

    Mindy, if the things that are happening do not interfere with your ability to function in daily life and if only positive results are coming, I would think these things are nothing to worry about.

    I personally do not think in terms of “possession” as an explanation for things, so that would not be something I can comment on very well. I can say that we have tremendous wisdom in our bodies and minds that can be accessed, sometimes through intention, sometimes through prayer. Any yoga pose, stretching or strengthening exercises were originally developed through someone tapping into the wisdom of the body. There’s no reason they can’t be discovered by anyone who taps into that wisdom.

    When you say that your head nods or your body does these things, remember that you are your body as well as your mind. You don’t have to conceive of an action first in your mind in order for it to take place. When you ride a bicycle for example, you just do it automatically. It may be that you are simply allowing yourself to be more instinctive and allowing your intuition to come through.

    Finally, when you receive answers with the nodding, it’s a lot like when people use dowsing rods or pendulums or do muscle testing. It’s a way of tapping into your intuition.

    It sounds like you are on a strong path of discovery and healing. Things will all become clearer and unfold in time. If any of these things start to feel too frightening or if you start having trouble in your daily life, you can always seek help.

  52. John Anthony on May 18th, 2009 10:14 pm

    I started meditating when a psychic told me (8 years ago) a spirit from a past life was blocking the progression of the success in my life. A very disturbing thing to tell someone, indeed. When she wanted me to clean out my bank account out to cleanse me spiritually, I knew it probably wasn’t true. What disturbs me though are the waves of energy I experience while meditating that forces my head to sway and nod in different directions. This seems to occur especially when I say the Lord’s prayer or focus on the cleansing of my spirit. It feels great though. Any insight would be greatly appreciated – Thanks!

  53. John Anthony on May 18th, 2009 10:21 pm

    Well, I just read Mindy’s comment and it sounds similar to my situation.

  54. Mary on May 19th, 2009 10:10 am

    I hope reading my reply to Mindy helped, John. If anything in meditation is disturbing and uncomfortable, remember that you can always stop. You can open your eyes to bring your attention out of meditation and with that the movements will probably stop. Or you can simply stop them by intention. If it “feels great”, it’s probably a good release.

    Your experience with the psychic was unfortunate. I’m glad you caught onto her game!

  55. Pauline on July 10th, 2009 9:46 am

    Does everything have an outline? Because everything that i see has an outline mostly it is white/clear outlines, sometimes it is colored depending on what I am looking at or it has tiny small rainbow outline that see around things. And some one told me that I could be seeing Energy Fields? Just wondering if it could be right or not.

  56. Mary on July 10th, 2009 11:13 am

    Pauline, assuming that you don’t have an eye problem or neurological problem, the answer is yes. You certainly could be seeing energy fields. Everything has an “aura” but not everyone can see that.

  57. Sara on August 1st, 2009 10:59 pm

    I am pretty new to this… but I had an experience this afternoon that was powerful. Usually it is very difficult for me to breath deeply while trying to keep my back straight… I actually breathe with more ease if I am slightly hunched forward. This particular time I forced myself to continue to sit upright and breathe through the discomfort and shortness of breath. I’m not sure how long it was but eventually it felt like something “popped”, like a cork out of a bottle, and I felt a rushing as well as a total body hot flash that lasted in waves for quite a while. And then I could actually breathe! I was sitting perfectly straight and had the sensation of my head being drawn toward the ceiling while breathing cleanly and deeply. I felt so great and was reluctant to end the meditation. Can you speculate what this experience might mean? I would assume it was some kind of energy blockage being released?

  58. Mary on August 2nd, 2009 8:45 am

    It does sound like an energy blockage being released, Sara!

  59. kenny on August 3rd, 2009 7:41 pm

    im kenny im 13.
    please answer my questions.
    i meditated for 30 minutes today and above my stomach i feel this energy , then it goes up my body into my head then i see this flash, then pulsing blue and green.
    what is it?
    like ashton said i can see green dots floating in the air.what is it? during the day i can also see blue circles, squares and other stuff fly across my room.then i hear noises.
    please answer if u can.

  60. Mary on August 4th, 2009 9:13 am

    Kenny, It’s difficult to say what you’re experiencing. I don’t know what kind of meditation you are doing. 30 minutes is a long time to meditate at age 13. It may be too much. I’d recommend you tell your parents what you are experiencing, or a school nurse, to make sure there isn’t something physical or chemical going on that is causing these experiences. Chances are it’s nothing to be concerned about, but it’s always good to check.

  61. kenny on August 4th, 2009 10:14 am

    i was listening to nature and flute music. i meant i opened my eyes every 10 minutes. and i know nothing is wrong.sometimes i have visions that i’ve never seen before.

  62. Mary on August 4th, 2009 2:02 pm

    Hi Kenny, I can only speculate a little about what is going on. It’s difficult to comment in much depth in this format. You can probably do some reading here and there online to get more ideas. But I can say that when you are in a meditative state, you can sense things (though sight, hearing, etc.) that you don’t normally experience. Sometimes it can be a dreamlike state where you see things in the way you see them in dreams. Sometimes you are actually sensing subtle energy which you don’t notice when your attention is in the usual waking state. Exactly what it is in your case, I can’t say. The energy you feel above your stomach which then moves definitely sounds like you are sensing energy. Sometimes you then see it as in the blue and green pulsing. But some of this may also be the mind projecting psychic content outwards, as it were. It’s like when you are half awake and still dreaming and the dream gets mixed up with reality.

    Sounds like you have lots to explore and learn. As long as this type of thing isn’t happening a lot outside meditation times and interfering with daily living, enjoy!

  63. kenny on August 4th, 2009 10:15 pm

    thank you very much mary. your were a great help.have a good day.

  64. Paul Bail on August 17th, 2009 11:35 pm

    I really like your simple and straighforward advice on subtle energy experiences in meditation. I am also blogging about meditation at and I plan to include a link to this blogpost of yours in a future posting of mine on hubpages. Thanks for your writings!

  65. Mary on August 18th, 2009 9:22 am

    Thank you for your writings, Paul. Just visited your hubpages and enjoy your clarity and simplicity on what I’ve read. Will be back to read more!

  66. john on December 5th, 2009 6:57 pm

    Hi I started meditating earlier this year and found it really relaxing, couple months in I started too feel this energy flowing through my body and head, It felt like a cool breeze flowing within my body, I continued and I started to focus on opening my third eye, after a month or so I was able to see an eye while in meditation and then I was beginning to see a group of eyes that sort of freaked me out, but I kept on going, then one morning I decided to meditate and this time it was different, when I began to focus on my third eye I started to see faces. I was so excited I felt like somehow i got to another stage of meditation.. but a week later my grandmother passed away and i was so busy with helping my mom out with the funeral arrangements i decided to stop meditating for a while, three months passed and i decided to start meditating again but now I can’t sense energy or see my third eye and when i try to meditate i feel blocked like something is in my way and I was wondering if you could help me out with this?

  67. Mary on December 6th, 2009 10:18 am

    Hi john, It’s difficult for me to respond well to questions when I don’t know a person’s background and what kind of meditation they are doing and so on, but I can make a couple of generalizations.

    If you stop exercising for a few months, it takes time to get back to where you started when you stopped. This could also be true for meditation. Also, if you are grieving your grandmother, that can affect your experience in meditation. Finally, you may indeed be experiencing some sort of block. This could happen with or without a life event interrupting meditation. Sometimes when we’ve had some very deep experiences in meditation, the resulting increase in energy flowing can start to move some blocks that have been in the system for some time. There’s always an alternation of expansive experiences and times when we are “clearing” when we have a regular meditation practice.

    It’s inevitable if you are meditating to have big experiences that there will be times when you don’t have them and will feel frustrated. Perhaps you could think about other reasons you may have for meditating. Even when there aren’t dramatic experiences, meditation has lots of benefits in daily life.

  68. john on December 6th, 2009 6:06 pm

    Thanks, really appreciate the advice and I’m glad i found this site, I started meditation just to relax now I’m learning about it’s different benefits, I’m really interested in the healing aspect of meditation so I’m gonna try to focus on that.. Once again thanks..

  69. Michael on January 6th, 2010 7:38 pm

    Hey this is one of my first times medatating and when I do I sit up on my bed with the lights out and just try and look into my ” minds eye” into nothingness. Then I just focus into the nothingness and when I do by heads starts to feel like an axe is being pushed through it and it is going to slowly split into two my eyes start to get very black and sometimes I start to shake i really don’t know if this is normal what should I do thanks for the help,

  70. Mary on January 7th, 2010 10:45 am

    Hi Michael, I can’t really comment much about this. You’d really need an experienced meditation teacher who could spend time going into this with you in detail to get guidance on this.

    Chances are by focussing your attention that way you are opening or stimulating the 6th (or “third eye”) chakra. This could be causing a lot of energy to flow producing the axe feeling and shaking as the energy encounters blocks. I would suggest you not do this meditation without expert guidance.

    I don’t know what motivated you to meditate. This may or may not be the best meditation method for you to achieve your goals. Best wishes.

  71. Michael on January 7th, 2010 4:58 pm

    Thanks alot I really appreciate your time and I will try and see if I can find an experienced teacher to help me thanks for the help

  72. Christopher Blue on January 16th, 2010 12:25 pm

    Well, I have been meditating for two and a half years now. I practice mindfulness meditation every day two – three times a day, depending on how busy I am. The first year I loved it, and I could tell I was getting more focused, and happier, and balanced…etc. But now when I meditate, I feel all these wonderful sensations in my head, and when I am able to ficus on them intensely, I feel it up and down my whole body. Sometimes, but now always, I will start to smile, and the smile will increase and I just start laughing out loud historically from anywhere to a minute – to about 20 minutes was the longest I have even gone laughing. also I have been able to bring this to my outside world, the life I lead when I am not meditating.
    In my outside life I constantly am going in and out of these states where I feel these sensations al throughout and states where I feel nothing, which is becoming more and more rare as each day passes. Also I can defiantly tell that I am starting to reach these higher levels of consciousness, in that If feel as if I am watching myself live out my life. Also I have very few thought form swiming around in my head and the few times I do I am able to recognize them instantly, and get rid of them or “Let them go” Also I never feel stressed or worried, And, I am an artist, so My creativity and imagination are increasing and increasing, and I can feel it inside of myself. I am also able to understand things way more then I ever was before I started meditating. Things such as Hard sciences, philosophy, math, sociology. I also feel like I am able to understand reality and people to such a greater depth. Also I feel as though I have so much more energy which is good, because I am avidly practicing yoga, working out, and exercising every single day, I now can go a whole week without sleeping, because of this increased energy.
    These being just a short list among many other things that I have experienced through meditation.
    I do have one question though, for anyone willing to answer. I have meditations that last for hours, and other times, they only seem to last about 20 – 30 minutes. Now it doesn’t really bother me or anything, Because I just listen to my body and mind. But I am just a little curious as to why this happens?

  73. Mary on January 16th, 2010 2:32 pm

    Christopher, you are certainly having remarkable experiences. I’m glad you are exercising a lot and doing yoga, because it really helps you to stay grounded and balanced when you are experiencing such rapid change. The energy you feel flowing up in your meditation and during the day can feel so wonderful, and yet it’s important not to have too much of that happen too fast. It sounds like you are “going with the flow” with your meditation times, but you just might be better off in the long run having a set amount of time for meditation and sticking to that. (A shorter time like 20 or 30 minutes maybe.) Just a suggestion…

  74. Evangelion on January 16th, 2010 4:21 pm

    I hope someone can answer on my question. I have been meditation for a year now, and just today something interesting happend, actually to me it was amazing.
    My eyes were closed, but all of sudden there came this vibration in my eyes, they just began twitching and moving, pulsating, it was crazy, i wasn’t controlling it or anything…it took me by surprise so i stood up after 2 minutes and went in other room where was my mom and pointed her to look at my eyes while i my trying to maintain my concentration, she was like “What’s wrong?! What’s happening” hahah it was one of those moments that i will remember for a long time.
    Than after 7 or so hours i decided to meditate for a big, just to see if it will happen again and it did. Just to make it clear it happened while i was meditating, some 30 min in. Second time that day, when i decided to meditate a bit just to see if it will happen again, it did happen and it was after some 5 min from the when i started.

    Does anyone have any clue or explanation? I guess it has something to do with energy…

  75. Mary on January 17th, 2010 10:52 am

    Actually anything sort of movement or sensation experienced in meditation ultimately has to do with energy moving. Sometimes movements or sensations in meditation are a release of tension due to deep relaxation, and sometimes movement or sensations happen as a result of increased energy flow. If it’s the eyes, it may have to do with increased energy flowing through the 6th chakra, often called the “third eye”. That particular chakra is associated with inner vision, but also with the physical eyes.

  76. Evangelion on January 17th, 2010 2:37 pm

    Thanks a lot Mary!

  77. cheri atkinson on January 20th, 2010 8:25 am

    During my meditation I will sometimes shake and air is pushed into my lungs. Push is used for the lack of a better word. My chest lifts and mouth opens and air rushes in. I feel wonderful, at peace, full of love and energized beyond belief. I feel much energy around me and even want to say other life forces or maybe just one. I am not sure. During this time questions are answered and clarity comes about. I think this mostly happens when I go into meditation with a question. Many times while working if I feel confused or overwhelmed with all the ideas I have and do not know which way to go I will meditate and this is usually when all the above happens. I am not scared but curious. Any information would be greatly appreciated. Blessings! Cheri

  78. Mary on January 20th, 2010 12:08 pm

    cheri, I can’t be sure exactly what is going on in your meditation, but can make a few general comments. Confusion and feeling overwhelmed with too many ideas comes from an overactive mind, a mind that isn’t grounded and settled. Meditation can allow the mind to settle down and take us to a deeper place where we experience more love, energy and clarity. As for the body moving, I’d recommend you read the Body Movements in Meditation post, and the comments on that.

  79. Tefri on February 15th, 2010 2:39 am

    Thank God finally I found some people on your website who have the same meditation experience I have. I did meditation for the last four years; the first two years were incredibly wonderful it was almost saved my life until I start getting distracted by the energy on my face and especially on my jaw its pulling me down and keeps distracting me, even on my wakening days when I want to concentrate on my task it would start distracting my concentration. I tried to help myself doing massage and other thing; I also tried not to focus on it. For God sake what do I have to do or where do I have to go please give me some good news??????
    Thank You

  80. Mary on February 15th, 2010 1:38 pm

    Tefri, reading through this post and the Body Movements in Meditation post, along with the comments, should help explain what may be going on and give you some ideas.

    It’s difficult to advise people more specifically when I don’t know what kind of meditation they are doing, how long they meditate at a time and so on. Since this is happening to you during your daily activity as well as meditation, I’d recommend checking with a doctor to see if this is possibly related to a medical condition. If not, you may need to meditate less for awhile or perhaps you can get an energy balancing session with someone who does Reiki or Healing Touch or something like that. It may be the energy that is affecting your jaw needs some extra help to become balanced. Good luck.

  81. Amy on February 23rd, 2010 5:04 pm

    Hi Mary, i am so glad i have come across your website… I have a meditaion experience i would like to share.. It was really amazing. i was really upset after i ended a 4 year relationship, at that time meditation was fairly new to me. Anyway i decided to meditate eyes open that day and i recall the whole of my body drawing heat, which was followed by really deep breaths and sometimes no breathing for fairly long periods. My body then began to pulsate very strongly but it felt wonderful. My vision began to become lighter and lighter until i could see nothing but pure light..all the while i felt my whole body become lighter until i was no longer aware of my senses..Almost as if if i wee in another realm, or state of of mind. It felt as if i were in this state for not a long time, but i recall being a little nervous as the whole experience was sureal, and thats when all my senses came back. when the meditation was over it turns out i had been meditating 4 45mins!! After i felt great during the following days. I was wondering if you could tell me what happened here. All i was doing was a breathing meditation..I look forward to hearing from you…x.x.x

  82. Mary on February 25th, 2010 1:17 pm

    This is quite an experience, Amy, for an eyes open breathing meditation! It would take a lot of words to explain this well, but I’ll see what I can do with a few… It sounds like you went into a very deep meditative state and were indeed “in another realm” as it were. Except it’s not another realm in that it’s separate from you. Rather, your consciousness expanded to experience other layers of yourself of which you are not normally aware. You were experiencing subtler levels of your being, and when the mind experiences that, it affects the body (good ‘ole mind-body connection). The senses are withdrawn from their usual contact with things and functioning at a more subtle level. The pulsation you felt in your body was undoubtedly an expression of the energy you were tapping into. Reading through the comments on this post as well as the Body Movements in Meditation post might help you understand more.

  83. Paromita on March 18th, 2010 2:48 am

    While doing meditation, once a strange vision came to me: i visulaised the entire solar system right in front of my closed eyes as if I was transported with all the planets revolving and rotating around the sun, but the color of the planets including the sun was silvery white. I was rather elated and surprised and my body started shivering and I opened my eyes and the entire vision was lost. I never again had this kind of a vision again.


  84. Jelsa on April 5th, 2010 10:29 pm

    I have been meditating for years and have recently noticed an energy that takes over my body. It starts to move my head and neck from side to side and up and down very slowly. I’m not afraid of it but am very inquisitive. I can stop it and control it at anytime but I usually just let it flow and flow with it. Any comments, suggestions, or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you, Jelsa

  85. Mary on April 6th, 2010 1:35 pm

    Jelsa, try reading our Body Movements in Meditation post and the comments with it. If you still have questions, leave a comment there.

  86. paromita on April 17th, 2010 2:32 am

    Hi Mary,

    I am new to meditation and I am practising it for 8 months now. while meditating through my third eye position, I see a tunnel of yellow light, as if I am travelling through a tunnel of yellow light. I am not sure what it is, but I like this vision. It seems like my stress is bing removed. Can you please explain what I am experiencing?


  87. Mary on April 17th, 2010 8:56 am

    Hello Paramita,

    With a focus on the third eye chakra, it’s common to have visions or see colors. I don’t know of any particular meaning for the sense of traveling through a tunnel of yellow light, but perhaps if you search further on the web you can find that.

    As for feeing like your stress is being removed, this is certainly a benefit of deep meditation, but probably this isn’t linked with the vision you are having. It’s simply an outcome of deep relaxation.

  88. paromita on April 18th, 2010 2:24 am

    Dear Mary,

    Thanks for your immediate response.


  89. Gabriel on May 18th, 2010 11:01 pm

    Ever since i really got into meditation i started feeling something, it only happens when my back and head are fully straight, it feels like air is circling in the top of my head, like something is connecting, i don’t know how to really explain it, because its not a tingling sensation , the thing i do know its that i didn’t feel it before, i always aim for that sensation before i start to meditate , hope to see your answer soon thanks

  90. Mary on May 19th, 2010 10:24 am

    Gabriel, it sounds like you a sensing subtle energy. Since it is a circling motion at the top of your head, you are probably feeling the crown chakra. Chakras have a spinning motion. You might want to read about the crown chakra to learn more.

  91. Andrew on June 11th, 2010 9:58 pm

    Thank you for this website, I’ve found it very helpful answering some of my questions about meditation.

    I began meditating to these “open focus” tapes I was given. I felt relaxed, light and tingly after the first 3 sessions (about a week apart, ~25min). Then, on my 4th session I felt a tremendous amount of energy at the top of my head pushing down and I felt as though I was in another mindstate and about to go somewhere very deep (internally), so I snapped out of it. I tried again today, a week later, without the tapes, for about 15 minutes, this time in a cross-legged position with my palms up, focusing my attention on nothingness or the presence of my body. I started involuntarily, rocking in a counterclockwise circle (or spiral?) and feeling energy at the back of my neck. I love these experiences! I feel more at peace, happy and confident in my everyday life. However, as these experiences are happening, I feel afraid. I feel as though if I “let go” further, I’m going to go very “deep” and start experiencing some really weird stuff (and I’m not so sure I want to). Is there anything to be afraid of? Why are there cautions against meditating too much?
    Thanks for your help!

  92. Mary on June 12th, 2010 9:26 am

    Andrew, some people go deep in meditation quite easily and this can result in lots of energy shifts and releases of tension and blocks. It sounds like you are one of these people. It’s understandable to love these experiences as we are thrilled by the opening up of new energies and the freedom it’s bringing to the body. But we don’t want this to happen too fast. We need to “integrate” what is happening or we could become “spacey” or have too much release going on. We have a tremendous potential for evolution and growth, but it’s better, I feel, to let this happen in a comfortable way. That means pacing ourselves.

    I’m not familiar with “open focus tapes” so don’t know what kind of support they provide for understanding and integrating these experiences. It might help to find a good meditation guide you can work with. It sounds like you are naturally pacing yourself (as when you “snapped out of it” when going deep). Ways to slow down the experience are meditate less time, open the eyes and stop when you become uncomfortable and so on. Also, it’s good to have a balanced routine, get exercise, do stretching and/or yoga – do things to stay grounded and balanced.

  93. Andrew on June 12th, 2010 12:56 pm

    Thank you for your response Mary. I will try to find myself a meditation guide to help me with this process. My sister practices kundalini yoga and has undergone some very strange effects (involuntary body posturing/mudras, good/disturbing visions, etc). As I proceed, I believe that I might also have similar experiences, since my own limited efforts seem to go “deep” rapidly. She interprets these experiences as divine and finds comfort in them and in prayer. However, I am an atheist, and cannot find the same comfort. My atheistic beliefs are unchanging as a result my own and her experiences. Can you point me to any non-religious interpretations/research that could help me understand these types of experiences in a secular context? Thanks again!

  94. Mary on June 12th, 2010 1:31 pm

    Energy is energy. Everything is energy. You can talk quantum mechanics and understand subtle energies as science, or you can use alternative healing terms like “aura”, or you can think of it in religious terms. Unfortunately, all of these ways of describing “what is” don’t seem to easily find a meeting ground. “Kundalini” is a term from a spiritual tradition, but it is describing the life force present in all living things, and manifesting in certain ways in human beings.

    There are some books describing subtle energies in non-religious terms and attempts to understand them scientifically. I think in time science will be able to explain what healers and spiritual texts refer to, but this will take time! You can check out our Heart of Healing website where there’s a lot written about energy healing.

  95. Manoj tripathi on June 28th, 2010 3:22 am

    i have been meditating since 6 months( around the same time i had a hurtful break up with my girlfriend…which occasionally made me feel depressed) these days apart from feeling the tingling, bugs crawling sensation in my forehead and various parts of my head, i feel it on my shoulders and left chest also. apart from that i also feel that my left arm slowly goes numb…partially…sometimes my left hand shakes while typing on a computer, sometimes i feel a strange pressure on my shoulder, pain in the nerves of my left arm and shoulder… im just worried about these sensations…please enlighten me.

  96. Mary on June 28th, 2010 9:39 am

    Manoj, with these symptoms in your left arm/shoulders, we would recommend that you see a doctor. There could be something medical going on that needs to be investigated.

  97. Anirudh Singh on July 12th, 2010 3:24 pm

    I am a 22 Year old guy and was always tring to do meditation but never followed anyone but started searching online and doing it myself
    well second thing that i was not doing to relax my self but to enlighten myself for or you may say for searching my way for success in my personal life

    Here comes the wired part , just yesertay night i tried to meditate ,I was on roof of my house and was looking at the sky and then i thought of meditating (i was laying on a bed sheet and gazing stars) i closed my eyes and started ,first i felt like my body is either shivering or some thing , secondly when it got intense i felt like my whole body is moving anti-clock wise and then the strangest thing stared my mouth started drying up and i was not comfortable , so i opened my eyes and rise up and still fet like kind of swing in my body

    can anyone tell me why this happen i mean i should have felt comfortable and why does mouth has stared drying up i mean i feel real thirsty well i will be waiting and would research my self as well

  98. Mary on July 12th, 2010 5:32 pm

    Anirudh_singh, we recommend that you get a teacher to help you with your meditation practice. This may involve activation of kundalini. It would be good to have personal guidance.

  99. Anirudh Singh on July 12th, 2010 8:33 pm

    S you think that i am somehow getting my kundilni activated ??

  100. Mary on July 14th, 2010 12:56 pm

    Anirudh, it’s impossible for us to say what is going on. In any case, it would be good to have some guidance with your practice when you have an experience that is so strong and is uncomfortable for you.

  101. Paula on August 5th, 2010 10:56 am

    I, too, have been having some very strange things happen while meditating. I’ve read all of the posts here and found a couple of them pertaining to what I’ve been experiencing. While in deep meditation, my head starts moving in swinging circles and if I ask a question while it’s moving about, my head will either nod yes or move side to side as to say no. I wasn’t sure if I was imagining this or not but I noticed a couple others who have had the same yes/no head movements. And after several times of experiencing this, I’ve come to realize that “it” really is saying yes or no according to what I ask. But my real question here is how is it really possible to get yes or no answers so easily without questioning the information recieved in some way. Any thoughts?

  102. Mary on August 5th, 2010 11:38 am

    Paula, it’s really hard to say if you are getting reliable answers this way. Usually intuition, which brings us answers, comes from a quiet, calm inner knowing. I wouldn’t rely on the answers you are getting this way.

  103. Paula on August 5th, 2010 12:28 pm

    I don’t really rely on the answers. It’s more the fact that I’m getting them at all. Anyone reading this have any thoughts as to why it is happening? Anyone having a similar experience?

  104. Jen on August 14th, 2010 9:20 pm

    First of all, I love your podcasts and use them regularly =). I’ve been an avid meditator for years, don’t know an exact date, but my first meditation experience came out of the back of a book written by John Edwards (yes, that guy from Crossing Over). The very first time I meditated, I fell deeply into it and have been stuck on it ever since. Meditation has seen me through the tough times in my life, and has helped me show the doctors that I do not need medication for depression (which I believe I never have had, but the doctors said I did. Who wouldn’t be down and out when friends skip out on paying rent and leave a lease that you cant afford in your name without notice?).

    Anyhoo, the one sensation I got all the time was like floating, and eventually it would take me into feeling ‘non-existent’, almost like as if I was just air. Though I would try to keep that feeling there for as long as possible, it always got interrupted with having to use the bathroom.

    The second sensation kist started about a year ago. I had asked for help from my spirit guide in deep meditation, and I was produced with a feeling that felt like someone tapping in Ruth on my third eye. Of it wasn’t that feeling, I would feel an electrical charge, almost, manifesting in tingled at my temples. It doesn’t happen often, and the last time it happened, I was meditating with your deep relaxation podcast, which made me very happy as I find that feeling alone to be very calming. I have also felt, at certain times, like someone taking their hand and running it lightly over my cheek, following the hair line.

  105. Mary on August 15th, 2010 3:14 pm

    Thank you for sharing your experiences. Probably others will recognize some of these experiences. Glad you’re enjoying the podcast!

  106. Mase on August 16th, 2010 11:59 pm

    Hi Mary, this is an excellent site and I’ve browsed through nearly all links and all comments. One thing I recommend for further reading/study (especially for those who sense “green lights” or associate their meditative states of being with the color green. This is a fascinating short-book (about 31 pages long) but very concise and comprehensive regarding the issue. I highly recommend it to all:

    Thanks much…

  107. Kenny on August 31st, 2010 8:18 pm

    I have always been able to look into the sky and after a few seconds i see these green dots flying around. I have had my eyes checked and nothing is wrong. What do you think i am seeing?

  108. Mary on September 1st, 2010 8:41 am

    Kenny, that’s really hard to say. It’s possible it could be a way that you sense energy, but it may not be…

  109. ElizabethR on September 9th, 2010 2:55 am

    For the past six months I have been working with an energy healer to break up recurring blockages and energy masses. One night as I was lying in bed the energy mass was so intense it caused my bed cover to rise up a few inches. Is there an explanation for this phenomenon?

    Also, are there any established energy healing techniques that require invasive acts by the therapist?

  110. Mary on September 9th, 2010 9:17 am

    Elizabeth, it’s possible, but rare, for energy to move something. Psychokinesis is a term for matter being moved by the mind (which would be a manipulation of energy). Perhaps doing some reading on that would shed some light on your experience.

    Except for acupuncture, which usually involves insertion of needles into energy meridians, I am not aware of energy healing techniques that are invasive.

  111. kavitha on September 20th, 2010 3:04 am

    I would like share my experience with you and would u please clarify my doubt , After doing my meditation when I was sleeping I felt some brown ball like thing went into my stomach it was soo forcefully entered into me that I stomach part moved back?? what does it mean??

  112. Mary on September 20th, 2010 6:31 pm

    kavitha, it’s very difficult to know the significance of some experiences, especially when they occur in sleep. In sleep we can feel, see, hear all sorts of things! Often the best thing is to see what an experience means to us by looking within.

  113. kavitha on September 22nd, 2010 6:53 am

    Thanks Mary I just go ahead with my meditation and like to share my experiences with u to have a better view on it.
    But I heard that astro travel sometimes occurs in sleep Then how can i differenciate whether its astro travel or a dream?? Bcoz oneday i got an experience of astro travelling. I felt that i am going into the light shaded pipe like thing and I flied in the sky and went to the show filled mountains talked with some person who looks like a white shade with some beard. i dont know what i talked about??
    Is it a dream??

  114. Mary on September 23rd, 2010 7:59 pm

    I don’t know, kavitha! I’m not an expert on astral travel. Maybe someone else can contribute some insight.

  115. Eleanor on September 30th, 2010 6:29 am

    Dear Mary,

    Just want to share an experience of using the Everyday Energy Healing CD.

    This evening I tried the sensing energy exercise and felt something like magnetic forces in-between my palms. The feeling was like putting two pieces of magnets together. This reminded me that I loved to play with magnets when I was a child.

    Honestly speaking, I still have some doubts regarding energy healing, such as whether it is against the Christian belief. This is why I am not confident enough to work on Track 5 of the Everyday Energy Healing CD. Nevertheless, I have to say that my recent “research” on energy healing has helped me in my prayer life. When I adjust my way of thinking and think of emotions as energy, I am able to identify where the problem is and what needs to be healed. This gives me a “target” in my prayer. I know what to pray for, and I do experience deep healing afterwards.

    Many thanks for sharing your experience and knowledge in energy healing.

    Best wishes,


  116. Mary on October 1st, 2010 1:30 pm

    Hi Eleanor, I wonder what your conflict is? Some Christians see it as part of a ministry of laying on of hands. For me, energy healing, like meditation, involves a human ability so basic it transcends beliefs. It is wonderful that you are so conscientious and consider everything with such care!

  117. Eleanor on October 2nd, 2010 9:47 am

    Dear Mary,

    In a charismatic group that I joined some years ago, there was a training programme for the Healing Ministry members. The very first lesson that we learned was how to pray for the balancing of two legs — due to various reasons, some people have one leg longer than the other one. When we practised laying hands on the classmates’ feet, there were various responses. Some said that they felt their shorter legs being pulled. Others said that they felt pain. Some others said that they felt nothing during the prayer, but the intercessors nearby saw with their own eyes how their classmates’ shorter legs being lengthened. I had one strange case too — I prayed for a lady as a “test”. She felt nothing, and I didn’t see her legs balanced. After the prayer and when I left the room, however, she suddenly felt some “force” inside one of her legs. She checked again and found that her legs were finally balanced.

    I guess the major difference between energy healing and the healing prayers — and for this reason some Christians like me may have doubts towards energy healing — is the source of energy we are “using” i.e. whether it is from God. For example, when I sensed some “magnetic forces” between my hands when I did the sensing energy exercise, was it from my energy body or God or some other spiritual sources?

    Just as a follow up — I repeated the sensing energy exercise for several times, but it seems that the feeling between my hands is not as strong as the first time. I realized that I got stuck with my first experience and expected the same thing to happen as I repeated the exercise. So I felt a bit frustrated when the “magnetic” feeling seemed to have weakened. (I realize that this happened in my daily prayer as well. I expect that I would feel good in my prayer today just like yesterday, and end up rather angry that it doesn’t happen again!)

    Thank you for your sharing of experience,


  118. Michelle on October 23rd, 2010 10:42 am

    While listening to a guided meditation today, I started to feel tingling along my spine, shortness of breath and very strong palpitations – like the beginning of a panic attack. This had happened before when I was practicing Kundalini meditations. The sensations today were unsettling so i had to stop my meditation and ground myself. Could you please give your opinion about what happened?

  119. Mary on October 24th, 2010 8:54 am

    Michele, it’s impossible to sort this out through website comments, but I’ll make a few general comments. Activation of kundalini can be accompanied by all sorts of sensations and symptoms. Certainly tingling along the spine is often associated with this, but this experience could be a mixture of the movement of energy in the spine and panic attack — sometimes one can become anxious in reaction to the shifts in energy and sensations they create. I think you did the right thing to stop and ground. Maybe it would be good to practice some sort of moving meditation, like Tai Chi or Qigong, or walking meditation for some time.

    Perhaps you can find a local meditation teacher or yoga instructor who can help you sort this out. Good luck.

  120. pramod on December 7th, 2010 2:33 am

    even i have expereince some of the feelings shared by others.i too felt my head is moving in a circular motion during deep meditation and felt my body is levitating

  121. Serenity on December 7th, 2010 12:25 pm

    A couple of days ago I was doing my body scan meditation and felt something I have never felt before. It felt like a burst of energy entered my body through my head and traveled all the way down to my stomach area where I was trying to focus. When it happened I thought it was strange but I didn’t let it disrupt my meditation. It was only after it happened that I freaked out because I never felt that before and it almost felt like I was being possessed by an entity. Is this normal?

  122. Mary on December 16th, 2010 11:05 am

    Serenity, you used the words “burst of energy”. That’s how it felt and undoubtedly what it was. In meditation, energy can open up and may be felt in all sorts of ways.

  123. Seven on January 24th, 2011 10:22 pm

    I’ve only been meditating for about a month now and I haven’t had any training in it. I’ve seen you mention the oasis podcasts and I plan to check those out asap. Up until last night I’ve had a very pleasant and eventful journey through meditation. So, ordinarily I run through my list of mudras and mantras (I study kuji-kiri, which involves alot of hands on chanting and what-not) but last night around 4 a.m I decided to shut off all the lights and meditate silently. Just as i’d grounded myself I felt the tingles that most people have described. not even two minutes later I felt the most horrible mound of negative energy slowly descend from my head to my knees. As soon as I felt it, I opened my eyes at which point I thought someone else was in my room. It scared the life out of me. any possible explanations?

    thanks mary

  124. Mary on January 25th, 2011 9:46 am

    Seven, I’m not familiar with the meditation style you are doing. It would be best to consult with your teacher about your experiences with it. It’s certainly the case that meditation can cause big shifts in energy, and that’s not always pleasant. Some meditation styles are more likely to cause intense and dramatic movements of energy.

  125. akshay on January 31st, 2011 4:38 pm

    i have started meditating from 24 dec 2010.. i have been meditating regularly for more than an hour now. in last two three days i i felt all my chakras except the crown chakra.. but today while meditating i felt crown chakra for the first time.. The feeling was awesome. I felt my body lighter than air then after some time i couldnt feel my lower body, and after some time not even my face. I could feel an aura of energy around me..
    I want to know what is the next stage so that i can be prepared for that and also people say about seeing light and objects i havent seen them so far. But i see colours and strange patterns of colours being formed.

  126. Mary on January 31st, 2011 5:29 pm

    akshay, The experiences you describe are associated with the 6th and 7th chakra. The sense of expansion comes with the crown chakra, and seeing colors and patterns would be associated with the 6th, “third eye” chakra. It does seem these are getting activated in your meditation. I’m not sure that this will unfold for you in neat “stages” that you can anticipate, however.

  127. Raissa on February 10th, 2011 4:48 am

    During my meditation session last night I felt this warm sensation basically starting from the top of my head and spreading through the rest of my body. I have had many meditation sessions before, but never experienced anything like this. I was kind of frightened at first, but continued meditating. It felt like a warm energy stream had filt up the room and rarely even though my eyes were shut, all I could see before my was the colour orange. Would it be possible for you to explain this experience to me? Thank you in advance.

    Kind regards :)

  128. Mary on February 10th, 2011 2:16 pm

    Raissa, this sounds like you are sensing subtle energies. You can feel them as a feeling (like the warm sensation) or see color, or sense them in any number of ways. Other than the explanation in this blog post and other comments, I can’t be very specific. Seeing color usually involves the 6th chakra (3rd eye). The sense of the energy filling the room may be an expansive experience that comes with opening the 7th chakra. Perhaps you would want to read about the chakras!

  129. Raissa Van Varsseveld on February 10th, 2011 6:26 pm

    Dear Mary,
    thank you very much for your feedback. Your explanations sound very interesting and I will read more about the chakras as you have suggested.

    Kind regards :)

  130. Javier on March 17th, 2011 8:21 pm

    I’m 19 my experience was.. after reading a few pages of a vedic culture book, i googled its culture.. then googled earthquakes.. then youtubing all of these things.. Weirdly,
    wanting to understand more.. i wound up watching youtube videos about consciousness.. Well i went to sleep verryyy late, about 6 am.

    Thing is i couldn’t sleep.. it was already daylight, i had tingling in my body a few times.. i quickly snapped out of them. Then out of nowhere i said to my self ”ill just do it my own way”(don’t know y i said it) ..

    Suddenly.. this immense power, these little tingles.. became one huge energy i felt all over my body, taking over me i lost all control, it said ”there is only one way, i am” I was scared, i was fighting it, and it got more intense. Until finally i snapped out.. i didn’t sleep the rest of the day, because i felt that if i relaxed my body, it would come back.

    Now after reading some of the experiences in here.. i think it was wrong to fight the energy? I read somewhere Jesus said ”do not resist evil” and like u said, resist results in it to persist.

    After i snapped out. My body felt veerrrrryy hot inside warm, especially my stomach. And it came to mind.. this wasn’t the first time this has occurred. I’m always frightened.. I’ll try not to be. I just needed to share this.

    Sorry for writing so much..
    Thanks! ..

  131. Mary on March 19th, 2011 8:29 am

    Javier, since you are having such powerful experiences and also a lot of fear, I recommend you get some help with this. Perhaps you could find a counselor who could help support you with this. Best wishes.

  132. Serenity on April 1st, 2011 8:27 am

    Hi, Mary:
    I wanted to know if you offer or know of any special meditations or workshops for those who are grieving the death of a loved one. My girlfriend lost her partner 4 years ago and is still having a hard time moving on with her life. Please help us!

  133. Mary on April 1st, 2011 8:37 am

    Serenity, I don’t offer any workshops, but there is a Guided Meditation for Grief in the podcast — There are some other meditations in the podcast that might help as well, but I would strongly recommend that your girlfriend join a grief support group or get some grief counseling. Usually your local hospice, hospital or a place of worship can recommend something. Best wishes.

  134. Ursula on April 4th, 2011 8:29 pm

    Hi Mary,

    I started meditating three months ago. It is becoming a bit confusing! For a week now I have been feeling energy coming through my ear while meditating. It gets a bit uncomfortable, so I snap out of it. Today I decided to let go and after a while, the energy got deep into my ear and I suddenly felt I was breathing it (it was a heavy), then I felt as it was all over my face and my body felt lighter. Is this a normal process? I tried to stay there, but it was overwhelming! I could still feel something in my ear after a while.

  135. Mary on April 5th, 2011 5:48 pm

    Ursula, reading through this post and the comments that go with it should give you some insights into what could be happening and how to handle it. There are an infinite variety of experiences that can happen as energy moves in meditation, and I’m not able to make very specific comments on all the experiences.

  136. Harpreet on May 4th, 2011 10:09 pm

    Experiences I have had with my attempt towards mediation. Have to say it feels great but at the sametime it feels different. I have seen shapes, oddly looking not alot maybe one or two, some designs kind of in a yellowish colour, had tingling in the back of my head, I think I may have seen faces maybe and an eye for sure, and after mediating like a few hours later while sitting and chatting with my mother and sister I had seen a blueish like dot with a hint of white light or something like that on the wall for a quick second or 2. Now what do these mean? Could you please explain?

  137. Mary on May 5th, 2011 1:26 pm

    Harpreet, other than saying that these visual experiences involve the 6th chakra (or “third eye”), I don’t place any particular meaning on them. What’s important is if any of them mean something to you!

  138. james on June 6th, 2011 7:06 am

    hi mary,i just bumped into your website by chance,and i was hoping you could help me..i have tried meditating quite a few times and although it felt ok afterwards,quite a lot of the times i would get bored and give up..i was getting quite doubtful about it to be honest..until about 2 hours ago..i bought a yantra mat and lay on it(wearing earplugs for silence)..i started the deep slow breathing etc,and after a while i felt tingling in my fingers which spread all over..but it slowly got more intense where i could feel myself shaking slightly,my face body everywhere..i was getting a bit worried bcoz i could also feel 2 distinct pressures(is the wrong word,but i cant think of anything else) on my chest..i felt my pulse to make sure i wasnt having a heart attack,but i was ok..after that i relaxed and let the intensity subside a bit for 10 minutes..mary,is this a normal experience?..i,m sure your very busy but your advice would be very welcome..thanks,jim

  139. Mary on June 8th, 2011 5:00 pm

    Jim, it’s impossible to give you specific advice about an experience like this. I’m not familiar with you, the meditation you are doing and so on. But you can learn some general principles that may apply by reading this post and peoples’ comments, as well as the Body Movements in Meditation post. Best wishes.

  140. Martha on June 12th, 2011 9:06 am

    I was doing a breathing meditation before I take my afternoon nap, while lying down on my bed. I started feeling a tingling sensation in the bottom of my feet. It got so strong that it felt like the floor was moving (but I wasn’t touching the floor), so my mind was kept focused on it, eventhough I tried not to.

  141. Richard on June 14th, 2011 2:48 am

    Hi Mary

    I have been meditating on and off for many years now. The last year I feel that my meditation has reached a new level, from reading Eckhart Tolle’s books. I now look at meditation as a state of presence to achieve during the day, rather than just treating it as a chore to do for 30 minutes and forget about. I don’t do an actual seated meditation very often now. When I do a seated meditation, I sometimes experience an overwhelming feeling of dizziness and nausea at the start, and feel that I cannot continue, so end the meditation. The other day I had this overwhelming feeling and was determined to stay with it. I felt like I was spinning and tumbling and almost to the point of being physically sick. Throughout the experience I just remained as relaxed and focused as I could. The dizziness reached a climax and quickly subsided, leaving me with a great feeling of inner peace and joy. After that point, I really didn’t want to end the meditation. I don’t quite know what this feeling was, but I believe it was a release of negative stale energy or something. The next time I feel this way in a meditation I will be determined to just fight through it.

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