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Deep meditation might often feel like you’re sitting there going over your to-do list or thinking about the technique of meditation itself, causing the time to elapse. You may be entering a profound state of meditation even if you aren’t aware of it. The transition into profound meditation, like falling asleep, can be subtle.
It’s important not to try to find out if you’re deep in meditation while meditating, otherwise you’ll ruin the experience. However, once you have completed your deep meditation, you may determine whether or not you went deep by reflecting on whether or not you experienced any of the following common signs:
1. Don’t realize you were meditating
If you were thinking about the fact that you were meditating the entire time you were meditating, you weren’t actually in the zone. A profound meditation suggests a slight to a severe loss of awareness, including the loss of knowledge of the fact that you’re meditating.
To be sure, this is where the practice becomes difficult. Anyone who has tried to fall asleep at night by thinking about how they can’t sleep frequently ends up staying awake for longer. Instead, sleep specialists advise keeping your mind occupied with something else, such as imagining lambs, counting backward, or reading.
This is why, historically, some meditation approaches have used a mantra, yantra, or breath awareness to slowly entice the mind away from surface awareness, so you forget you’re meditating at all.
2. Notice time gaps
Another sign of deep meditation is if you observed that more time passed than you could account for. In other words, you meditated for 20 minutes, but it only seemed like 10 minutes—and you don’t remember thinking much during those unaccounted-for 10 minutes.
3. Became absorbed in your thoughts
Going deep implies that your mind is transitioning from surface consciousness to subtle awareness, and eventually to no awareness. As your mind moves through the many levels of awareness, you’ll have a variety of thoughts, many of which will have nothing to do with meditation.
You may re-excite your mind if you reject your thoughts. Although it may seem counterintuitive, if you welcome your thoughts, your mind will continue to de-excite and, eventually, you may lose all consciousness, which is a symptom of the deepest stages of meditation.
4. Be shallow your breathing
Taking a deep breath during meditation is a common side effect of the deep levels of relaxation attained during the practice. The rate at which the body breathes is related to the amount of rest obtained throughout a certain event.
Your respiratory rate will be high while jogging. Your respiration rate is substantially lower when you are seated and reading a book. Your breathing rate slows even more when you sleep.
And, while meditating, your breathing rate can reach levels even deeper than sleep, where you’re scarcely breathing at all. You may stop breathing entirely during these periods of severe profound relaxation.
5. Be at ease your entire body
You might begin a meditation sitting upright with an erect spine and elevated chin, but emerge out with your chin dropped forward and your back somewhat rounded. Don’t be concerned if this occurs during your meditation! You were simply enjoying an extraordinarily pleasurable experience that you most likely forgot about when you came out.
From the outside, it appeared as if you were sleeping, yet on the inside, it felt as if you were still sitting straight. It’s also common for meditators in these profound states to drool on themselves from time to time.
How can you enhance my meditation if you’re not yet exhibiting any of these signs above?
Even if you did not feel any of these symptoms, this does not imply that your meditation was ineffective. Every meditator has experiences that come to the surface now and then. The difference between a rookie and seasoned meditators is that novices assess their deep experiences as “excellent” meditations while seasoned meditators judge their surface experiences as “poor”.
Seasoned meditators, on the other hand, stay judgment-free about their feelings, which allows them to enjoy deeper meditations simply because they have fewer expectations about how it should feel.
The trick is to have a neutral attitude about all meditation experiences. Also, keep in mind that consistency has a significant effect on the quality of your experiences. Don’t expect to see dramatic changes in your first few days, weeks, or even months of meditating. They will happen someday, but generally when you least expect it.
Remember that all meditations are beneficial, and each one makes it simpler to have more effortless experiences in your next meditation.