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Do I have to meditate to get results?

Discussion in 'Meditation Chatter Box' started by misssbb, Aug 17, 2008.

  1. misssbb

    misssbb Member

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    I have been listening to LifeFlow 10 for about three weeks now and am very happy with the positive changes I have noticed.

    At bedtime, I put on the headphones and fall asleep fairly quickly. I leave it on repeat and usually wake up 2-3 hours later. Then I take off the headphones and plug in the speakers and sleep the rest of the night with it on.

    This will sound like heresy to most of the LifeFlow users who seem to be using it to improve their meditations, but I have no interest in meditating. I do, however, have an interest in the brain entrainment and synchronicity that LifeFlow claims to enhance, improve and/or increase.

    My question is, do I actually have to meditate in order for the brain entrainment and brain synchronicity to take place?

    Are the different beats only effective if one is in a meditative state while listening to them?

    What happens when one listens to the LifeFlow tracks without meditating?

    Are they "working" while I am sleeping?

    While I am happy with the effects I have received so far, will I continue to see a change as I move through the LifeFlow series and do not actually meditate, or am I wasting my money? :confused:

    Thank you.
     
  2. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    Have you tried meditation ?
     
  3. Raven

    Raven Member

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    Entrainment without meditation

    Misssbb,

    Meditation is only one activity that may be enhanced by brainwave entrainment. Meditation has its own unique benefits that, in my experience, you won't gain in any way other than by entering into a meditative state.

    That being said, that does not mean there are no benefits to be gained by entrainment outside of meditation. When you are relaxed and at ease your brain emits far more alpha waves than when you are mentally busy. Listening to entrainment while simply relaxing can enhance your experience of relaxation which, in turn, can enhance your sense of well-being, reduce stress, improve immune system function and have a host of other beneficial effects.

    You always need to maintain a realistic and pragmatic set of expectations, however. If you put on, for example, a track that entrains to alpha frequencies in the background and then flip on your television set to cheer on your favorite football team, you have about a snowball's chance in hell of entering any sort of alpha brainwave state. Your activities have to be in line with the target entrainment frequency, so be sure to keep it realistic.

    I think if you read the materials Michael has made available carefully you'll find that the LifeFlow tracks were designed with meditation in mind but that does not preclude using them for other purposes. Take the tracks for Learning and Creativity, for instance. I suppose those could be used equally well for meditation if you wanted to, but the frequencies they entrain to are also known to enhance Learning and Creativity especially.

    My own personal opinion is that people are different, and what works well and is pleasing to one person may not be another person's cup of tea, so to speak. And I think your personal experience has really answered your own question. You've been using LifeFlow without practicing meditation and are enjoying great benefits from it. If that is your experience then you really have no need for anyone to tell you whether or not such use is appropriate. Your own progress has proved that for you the tracks are beneficial.

    Perhaps in time you will develop an interest in meditation and if so you'll probably discover the LifeFlow tracks take on yet another beneficial dimension for you. But in the meantime, use them in any other ways you discover they produce positive results. Every little step any of us makes to improve our own life improves the world for everyone else. So by all means, use the tracks for your own greatest good!

    ~R~
     
  4. misssbb

    misssbb Member

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    Thank you Raven. I did go through the learning meditation course and maybe at some point I will do it again and it will resonate with me better, but right now I have too much going on to have to deal with learning and practicing one more thing. I am very happy with the changes and improvements I perceive and understand that it would probably be better if I meditated too, but I'm just not up for it right now.

    I would be interested in what you think about leaving LifeFlow 10 (and any future ones as well) playing on speakers while I sleep. Thank you.
     
  5. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    Ok, so you did try it.
    Actually meditation is a natural state for your mind to be in, or it would be if we weren't tought to have to constantly be busy with thinking and being worried, or being angry or being sad, or being frustrated, or being, or being...

    Like Raven said, meditation is not a must for entrainment to work, but especially since you seem to be flooded with emotions and situations that bring you off-balance, some form of meditation can really help you put things back in perspective.

    I agree that the learning curve seems quite steep for the meditation course.
    Just look at the quantity of people in this forum that are either frustrated or worried about "if they are doing it right".

    If you feel that this learning curve is too high at the moment, I suggest you just keep listening to Lifeflow the way you like it, but not for hours like you do now.
    Alongside that, I suggest you try meditating with the help of one of Michael's guided meditations that can be found here: Guided Meditations - Project Meditation Community Forum

    Just pick the one you think applies best for your situation.

    You see, even tho brain entrainment outside meditation can be helpfull, it is meditation itself that can change your life !

    With a guided meditation there is no learning, just sit back and follow instructions :)
     
  6. Raven

    Raven Member

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    Entrainment and Sleep

    Sleeping with an entrainment track is something of a mixed bag. When you first drift off to sleep you pass down through the levels of alpha, then theta, then delta where you remain in the deepest levels of sleep for a period of time before heading back upwards in the opposite direction until you reach alpha again. It's all one big cycle and once it has completed it starts all over again.

    The length of time required for one complete cycle is 60 to 90 minutes on average and varies from person to person. What does change from cycle to cycle is the amount of time you spend in those deepest levels of delta where you get your deepest sleep. With each successive cycle the time you spend down at the bottom in delta grows shorter and shorter. The overall cycle remains about the same but your recuperative delta sleep decreases with every loop.

    So I guess I would say try it and see how it feels one night then try it without another night. Did you end up feeling more or less rested with the entrainment playing all night long?

    Take LifeFlow 10, for instance, which is an alpha frequency. That's great for beginning to drift off, but what about when your brain is ready to move on down to the deeper theta and delta levels? Is that 10Hz entrainment track interfering with your brain's efforts to get down deeper than alpha? If that is the case then you would be getting robbed of the deeper levels of sleep or at least they would be less than optimum. I think I would be inclined to put the entrainment track on without looping it so that once it plays through all the way it shuts off. Then let nature take its course.

    And then you could always try playing a lower entrainment track like a theta or delta to fall asleep with. That might help you get down to and perhaps even remain in those deeper, more recuperative levels of sleep for a long period, at least during your first sleep cycle. I think I'd still be tempted to let the track end after the first time through rather than looping it.

    ~R~
     

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