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non material movement?

Discussion in 'Meditation Chatter Box' started by DreadHead, Dec 18, 2007.

  1. DreadHead

    DreadHead Member

    Dec 14, 2007
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    sensation of movement?

    i had already predicted questions coming from my side, so here's the first one.
    it's one i've pondered over many a day, and one of the main reasons i got into meditating
    before getting to know other benefits, it was just to gain control over the following effect..

    it's an experience of strong motion, uncontrollable, but the body doesn't move at all,
    although i'd swear it does (i've got plenty proof that the body doesn't actually move)
    it seemed to happen at random first, but now i'm actually experiencing the same thing
    more and more often (maybe because i'm looking for it?)
    when i sit down, meditating, it's generally a movement going forth and backwards with the upper body,
    like nodding with the whole upper part of it,
    when i lay down, my body moves in 'waves' which can go both ways..
    I don't really know how to explain it, so i hope someone knows the same feeling..
    the whole movement doesn't let itself be controlled very easily,
    obviously because the state fades away when you're trying really hard to influence it
    (by loosing concentration or something)

    because it's faaaar to strong to be any sort of imagination, and i know better than that, i've figured it's just something that happens when you're asleep,
    but through meditating i keep my consiousness,
    while the body does fall asleep, and i'm therefore able to feel it.
    that raises another question, should my body actually fall asleep?
    i mean, ofcourse, if it falls completely asleep, i'll just drop out of position
    (when im sitting down, not laying), but it can sleep while holding it,
    especially if you're using something to support your back and head,
    so does it help regenerating my energy, or does it take away part of the effects of meditation?

    other than that potential issue, it's not really a problem,
    it's even quite a comfortable feeling, but i'm just really curious about the nature of it.

    what i've read about the experiences seemed all occult stuff,
    so i don't know how much of their explanation i should believe,
    but they generally state it as the consiousness getting loose from the body..
    when i open my eyes, i do have my eyesight in the new place of my body,
    but it immediatly fades away at that point,
    and it could just aswell be a trick of my mind, adjusting to the sight or something..

    again, i don't know a lot about this stuff,
    but i'm really curious, and i do hope someone can tell me more.

    may you all stay at peace

    Last edited: Dec 18, 2007
  2. xbomber08

    xbomber08 Member

    Dec 14, 2007
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    I think I have the same feeling you do. Sometimes when I'm sitting on my bed watching a movie on my laptop, after awhile of sitting there it really does feel like I'm rocking back and forth, but I'm really not sure.

    Since it happens when I am watching a movie and staying still, it could be the same exact thing with you and your meditation. I'm not exactly sure what causes it though, but you can definitely feel like you are rocking.
  3. wendy

    wendy Member

    Dec 14, 2007
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    I've experienced something similar, from time to time...it's almost like being in a roller coaster and being shimmied from side to side. I have no idea what it is. I suppose, this too, shall explain itself in time. Wendy
  4. Phun20

    Phun20 Member

    Dec 14, 2007
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    Very intriguing, I have had similar experiences, and it also seems to follow a beat of music if I am listening to a song, along with lifeflow too. What it seems like is the flow of blood as it fluctuates through your body, because that is how your blood acts, it isn't a consistent flow, it is more of a pulse, so I wonder if that is the sensation that we are feeling. Alas, I am no expert, so I am not 100% sure, but thats what it seems like...
  5. Michael Mackenzie

    Michael Mackenzie Owner

    Nov 25, 2007
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    Sensations of Movement

    First, and this is generally true for many of the "odd" physical sensations produced while meditating or even just deeply, consciously relaxing (i.e., progressive relaxation, autogenics, etc.,) most people have very little sense of what their body is feeling most of the time.

    We just don't pay attention to things. Almost all of us are on perpetual auto-pilot with regard to our body feelings, just as we are on auto-pilot regarding how much our thoughts race.

    Same thing with bodily sensations. We treat them much as we do thinking; we are so habituated to them that they are virtually unconscious.

    Now we still the mind a bit and relax the muscles, and suddenly we start feeling those things that have been there with us all the time, but to which we have been unconscious.

    Now, that may not be the case with every new twitch you feel, but be assured that most of these new feelings are just the same old feelings, you are just becoming aware of them for the first time.

    When we meditate it activates parts of our brains that are sometimes little used, and as I have already mentioned, it can bring up old memories, repressed memories, good and bad, but it can also trigger neural pathways that are in the brain that govern our physical movements.

    Let me give you an example that should help illustrate this point:

    Watch babies who are just learning how to walk, and you see how unsteady on their feet they are. They have to concentrate on taking every step, moving their feet and legs in just the right way, and keeping their center of balance fixed in the middle, all at the same time. If you look in their eyes you can almost see the learning that is going on. But this is not just learning in the sense that they are accumulating new facts; it is neuro-muscular learning.

    The physical brain is actually changing and adapting, adding new pathways it never had before. The more the babies practice walking, the more these pathways get used and, much like a well worn deer path in the forest, in time the pathways become deeply "burned in" so to speak.

    As adults we don't even consiously think about walking anymore. We want to walk, we just get up and walk, no conscious effort required. Those pathways have become so well worn for walking that they function for us at a level that is below conscious perception.

    OK, that explains walking, but what about other kinds of movements?

    We encounter experiences all the time that are new to us, and when we do, and when we deal with them, the brain lays down the beginnings of a new neural-muscular pathway. But if it is something we don't do often, or maybe we only ever do it once or twice in our lives, those neural pathways get layed down but never well worn. With time they fade but never disappear. They're a physical part of our brain structure.

    Now along comes meditation and/or entrainment, and the brain begins to synchronize its hemispheres, and to operate more efficiently. And just like the repressed memories this process can bring up, it can also stimulate those neural-muscular pathways that never get used. We may not physically be moving, but the pathways are getting stimulated electro-chemically just as if we were. For subjective purposes it is the same as if we really were moving.

    This quick experiment should help you understand better: You may need a friend or loved one to read this back to you!

    Close your eyes and imagine you can see a bright, yellow lemon.

    Think about it and visualize the lemon as clearly as possible.

    See it's bright color, the dimpled texture of its surface.

    Now imagine taking a knife and cutting that lemon in half, and as you do so you see a spray of the lemon's tart juices spurt out from the knife cut.

    Imagine taking a half of that lemon and putting it in your mouth, biting down on it and sucking that sour juice.

    Imagine it swirling out, around your mouth, all over your tongue, a symphony of sour.

    Now, notice what is actually happening at that moment as you are imagining all these things with the lemons.

    Do you find your mouth is watering and has filled with saliva, just as if you had really taken a bite of a lemon?

    What you have done is triggered the brain to run a signal along that neural pathway we have all developed and used a zillion times when we taste something sour.

    And even though no physical lemon was involved, the stimulus to the brain was no different than if you really had bitten into a lemon. The pathway was activated and the body experienced what that pathway was designed to process.

    This feeling of 'sensation of movement' may very well be something along those lines. The relaxation, the mental quiet, the brain synchronization, are all acting to trigger neural pathways, and may well be triggering a pathway that was once layed down in response to a rocking motion, or a rotating motion, or whatever.

    Again, I would like to reassure you, the sensation is not hazardous, but merely curious. If you are familiar with Vipassana, or Mindfulness meditation techniques, perhaps you may want to focus on that sensation and observe it as the subject of study. If not, it is nothing to be concerned with, and will probably come and go as it pleases.

    Acknowledge it, thank it for appearing, but let it know you will be going back to your meditation now, and it may return at a later time if it wishes when you can give it your full attention.

    Michael :)
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2007

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