You probably have heard of meditation before, however, you might not have been excited at first.
I really can’t blame you because a lot of people have certain preconceptions regarding meditation. A lot of these are really myths that serve to turn people off from this amazing practice that can free them from daily stress and pressure.
Part of the reason for this is because of the religious or spiritual baggage of meditation. After all, meditation was pioneered in the East, in the specific context of Buddhism and Hinduism.
This cuts against the grain with most people from the West. Most Westerners are secular. It’s no surprise that a lot of people are turned off by the spiritual or mystical reputation of meditation. But this is not the reality of meditation.
Here are 8 myths that might be holding you back about meditation. Learn to recognize these and hear the truth about meditation so you can make a real informed choice.
Myth #1: You have to be religious for meditation to work
According to this myth, you have to be a Buddhist or a Hindu for meditation to work for you. Absolutely wrong. Meditation works with how your mind naturally processes stimuli.
It doesn’t need religion. It doesn’t need spirituality. You just need to tune in to how your mind is already working.
Myth #2: You have to “believe” for meditation to produce benefits
You don’t have to believe in anything. You just have to go through the steps of meditation because meditation works with how your mind works. It’s kind of like redecorating a room with existing furniture.
The furniture is already there. You just need to rearrange the furniture, so it produces better effects.
You’re not imagining stuff for the process to work. You’re not forcing yourself to change what you believe in for meditation to produce results.
Myth #3: You are fully unconscious when meditating
This is an absolute lie. A lot of people are under the impression that meditation is really like some variation of sleep and you’re hypnotizing yourself or entering some sort of altered reality. No. This is not true.
Real practical meditation is actually the precise opposite. You remain fully conscious. However, you train your consciousness to purify its focus. It leads to a very empowering feeling because you start becoming more mentally disciplined. This is the complete opposite of just simply being unconscious.
Myth #4: You will fall under the influence of others easily when meditating
When you meditate, you are calling the shots because your focus is super filtered. It is super fine. Only you can do this. Nobody outside of you can guide you to achieve this level of clarity and focus.
You have to do this yourself. Accordingly, you won’t fall under the influence of others when meditating unless, of course, you want to. You always have that choice. But practically speaking, you are calling the shots.
Myth #5: Meditation is another form of hypnosis
Hypnosis works when somebody outside of you guides you to achieve an altered state of reality. They basically change how you look at things. Maybe a hypnotist will make you change your mind about smoking or some form of addictive behavior.
Meditation is very different from hypnosis because you’re not gaining instructions. Instead, you are clearing away your mind to focus on how your mind works in a given moment. You’re not taking in stuff. You’re actually clearing stuff away, so there’s nothing to get hypnotized about. What you have is pure focus.
Myth #6: It takes a lot of effort to meditate properly
Your mind is actually very powerful. To use machinery analogy, your mind already has gears that turn. And these are very powerful gears. You have to understand that you navigate reality with your mind. It’s how your body exists in reality. You perceive reality through your mind.
When you meditate, you tap into that machinery and you purify it. In other words, the energy is already there. You don’t have to exert new effort. Instead, again, to use the analogy of the room with furniture, you’re just rearranging the furniture to produce a different effect.
Myth #7: You have to meditate for a long time for it to benefit you
Meditation, to a lot of people, is a lot of work. They think that there are many levels to it.
Well, people who think that way are being confused by the traditional religion or spirituality that surrounded meditation because Buddhists think in levels. Hindus too, to a certain degree.
Raw practical basic meditation can produce results for you right here, right now. Since your goal is not to attain some sort of mystical enlightenment but to just live in the present moment and focus your mental energies, the benefit is almost immediate if you do it right.
Myth #8: People who meditate are gullible
This really is a slam against people who are looking for natural and self-controlled ways to deal with stress. This is an insult. The truth is, even if you are the most skeptical person in the world and you really have a tough time believing anything, if you just focus on the mental processes you are already engaged in and direct it to a more natural alignment, you don’t need to be persuaded of anything. It just works on its own.
All of the 8 myths above will trip you up. Learn how to spot them in terms of your belief system.
Get out from under them and start enjoying the benefits you’ve been looking for. You need to start with as clean of a slate as you can.