By the fifth minute, I had already lost interest. While the rest of the room seemed deep in meditation, I was wondering, am I meditating or sleeping? I opened my eyes to check on what everyone else was doing. I hurriedly shut the roving eye as I sensed the instructor approach.
“Empty your mind,” he droned in a soporific tone designed to help us meditate. My inner voice weighed in, “I hope the tailor does a good job with my dress. Wasn’t he supposed to give me my clothes yesterday evening?”
“Think of the deep blue sky; imagine lying flat on a plain stretch of lush green grass and silence for company.” My thoughts went to my yet-to-be-planned holiday. “Goodness, I hope it is not too late to book a holiday.”
“Let your emotions flow. Laugh if you wish to. Cry if you want.” I almost giggled thinking of our naughty secret from last evening. As the instructor kept chanting soothing words, I began dreaming of my bed at home, and wondered why I feel sleepy during meditation.
Meditation Puts Me To Sleep!!!
When you’re in a meditation class, do you ever have to pinch and ask yourself, “Wait, am I meditating or sleeping?” If that’s the case, then you’re not practicing the art of meditation correctly.
Sleeping while meditation indicates that you’re allowing your thoughts to go astray, and you begin daydreaming. Getting distracted by the incessant buzz of notifications, phone calls, and emails, means you are slowly losing touch with your spiritual side.
That is me. And, then there is my spouse; the opposite of me, as far as religion and spirituality are concerned. He is a card-carrying religious person, in fact, a judicious mix of religious and spiritual.
He is a firm believer in religion and God, and in the absence of a physical manifestation of God, he closes his eyes and recites the shlokas which, no surprise, he knows by heart. He is an expert in this, while I keep wondering how to stop getting meditation to put me to sleep.
He prays on behalf of the family and asks for special forgiveness my way because I do not look in the direction of the puja room unless I need to spring-clean it. At least I know he loves me.
Too many thoughts
My husband was keen that both of us attend the workshop on meditation because it was important we learn together if we want to implement the principles in our lives and in our home. I dread the thought of organized meditation, yet I agreed for the sake of solidarity.
I have tried to argue with him many times, and have told him I feel sleepy during meditation, but he is adamant on attending all these workshops and seminars. He has this hope that one day I will take meditation, religion and God seriously.
Five days of regimented meditation and several Google searches later, I would learn that emptying the mind does not mean that we must certainly draw a blank. One must let the thoughts flow without working hard to intervene.
One could imagine that one is watching from the top as thoughts freely swoop in and out of one’s consciousness. The thought of it does sound calming, but I still didn’t know how to reach that stage without getting distracted.
My husband confessed that he had no trouble in emptying his mind of all thoughts. Men, I scoffed. They hardly have things to worry about, whereas the women, we juggle several thoughts in our head. I glanced around in the room and saw serene faces listening to the facilitator with intent.
Each one of them had a tiny scribbling pad and I saw them noting their learnings from the workshop. Wait, what? I was already beginning to zone out, just the topic of meditation puts me to sleep, but there were people here who really cared about this stuff.
People were discussing their life goals and meditation, and were concentrating deeply on whatever was being said. They were sitting in the right posture and everything, and suddenly I felt conscious of my arched back. On the other hand, I couldn’t even tell, am I meditating or sleeping?
The couple near me seemed to communicate with their minds. They seemed so much in tune with each other; in fact, they looked identical as far as their expressions were concerned. I envy such couples whose philosophies match.
They had the same opinion on religion, spirituality, education and lifestyle and agreed with each other on all aspects of the debate on subjects that are open to interpretation. Although I love my husband very much, we disagree on almost everything.
We’re both practical
As far as my spouse and I are concerned, I am the opinionated one in our relationship, whereas he is a staunch follower of the heart’s opinion. We are practical people most of the time, so we know when we have lost the battle. Hence, in our household, each follows one’s own path to spirituality and religion.
He draws strength from prayer, whereas I follow cold logic, mind control and attribute everything to karma. My god is my work and my family; on the other hand, my husband’s god is all that and the religious one.
In our own way, we believe in a superpower; however, we differ in the manner we approach spirituality. He is more in touch with God and himself, whereas it takes a lot of willpower for me to sit down and speak to this higher power.
We argue, debate, and agree to disagree on many matters. However, we let our children distil our opinions but follow their own path, as they are old enough to understand. That is one thing we agree on.
Related Reading: How to heal relationships through meditation
A sharp nudge on my waist woke me from my reverie, it was my husband. Sneakily I whispered in his ear, “Can you tell, am I meditating or sleeping?” He laughed at me. Well, thank God for the darkened room and the relaxation stretch of the workshop: The shavasana.
While sleeping we are not in control of our thoughts, but while meditating we are alert and aware of our surroundings.
No. While you do feel at peace with yourself when you’re asleep, meditation involves a deep trance while still remaining aware of all that is happening around you.
When you are meditating, it is easy to get distracted by your phone, or what others around you are doing. If you don’t concentrate on solely meditating, it will get boring for you and you will begin to feel sleepy.