Does meditation have a dark side?

light in dark meditation

I love this conversation between Michael Stone (yoga teacher, Buddhist teacher, psychotherapist) and  neuroscientist Willoughby Britton about the other side of meditation.

We often (myself included) extol the benefits of meditation, but sometimes meditation can be challenging and bring up feelings like anxiety, guilt and judgement.

I know that there have been times when a specific type of meditation (the one I was taught, actually) seems to exacerbate my racing thoughts, so those days I switch to a guided meditation or walking meditation.  In other words, for me, one size doesn’t fit all.

Enjoy the conversation


– Your Charmed Yogi

(Photo: Robert Nash)

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3 thoughts on “Does meditation have a dark side?

  1. Thank you for sharing this. I’ve had a tough time getting back into my meditation practice because it puts a glaring spotlight on the stress and anxiety in my life. It felt miserable to spend an extra 40 minutes a day giving air time to the chattery monkey. Have you written a previous post about guided meditations that you recommend??

    • I like to do a search on YouTube or iTunes for guided meditations for my needs that day.

      Also, if you subscribe to YogaGlo, they have tons of guided meditations to choose from.

      Hope this helps and good luck. I understand.


  2. Meditation doesn’t have to be still. I do a seated qi-gong meditation, but it’s a series of Mudras, so there’s movement that I can focus on. In a demanding Yoga series, one can find an amazing stillness, while attempting to hold a posture. It’s simply not necessary to sit or be still. A repetitive task with the hands or the body works just as well as a mantra.

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