Meditation: Facts And Beyond
Meditation, as such is a practice and state, based on the golden principles of Raj-Yoga, but is very subjective and is a product of “personal experience”. Therefore, there is no wonder if we find as many descriptions of meditation as the number of people, practising this unique art. It is on this account that there is a need to demystify meditation and understand its impact on the individual and the society, as a whole.
It is very difficult to describe the experience of meditation scientifically, because it depends on the individual’s capacity of absorption and communication skills. Also, as it belongs to ultimate reality, existence of which is difficult to prove by scientific parameters. Science is capable of describing and proving positives and not negatives. Therefore, an experience, which is supra-physical is difficult to be described by the known parameters of medical and mental science. Still, we can notice few facts about the spiritual gains of meditation.
Longer lasting peace of mind, an internal sense of fulfilment/ satisfaction, equal concern for animate and inanimate, negligible sense of selfishness or self-existence and an enhanced sense of compassion for all, are few personal gains of meditation practices, noticed uniformly. On account of this, an all-pervading sense of freedom and fearlessness also develops in such people, which is transforming for the self and society. It can well be traced and linked to all those who have done a great social transformation, in any country/society, at any point of time. This personality change is stable and is beyond the influence of some drugs, which are known to give some supra-material experience, when one is under their influence. These meditation outcomes are on account of the realisation and experience of “ultimate realty”, rather than “short-lived reality” from neurological mechanisms. This feeling/experience is difficult to describe because human mind is so wired that it cannot remain vacant for any moment of time and cannot describe the “negative” which substitutes the “positive” of realty sense, perceived and cultivated by sensory registrations and consequent learning. Therefore, it is difficult to describe the experience of meditation objectively but personality changes described above, are stable and can be measured/observed.
We may therefore agree and believe that deeper and wider consciousness, experienced through meditation, has an extremely positive role in bringing basic change in human nature itself. It integrates our physical, intellectual and emotional energies with a deeper and higher power, thereby banishing ignorance, evil and misery. Scientifically and socially it has been studied that in the towns where at least one per cent of the population was prasticing transcendental meditation (TM), the crime rate came down significantly. David Hawkins, a pioneer in quantification of consciousness and its collective influence, has argued on mathematical grounds that even a few loving thoughts during the course of the day more than counterbalance all of our negative thoughts. All this expression is in face of the fact that nature of “ultimate consciousness” is yet to be understood by mankind, on this planet.
By Dr Dipak Shukla