How to deal with pain while meditating?

Everybody feels discomfort, no matter who we are, once we sit down, stop moving, and meditate the volume of discomfort keeps increasing. Pain usually stops people from feeling relaxed and reduces the length of their meditation practice. So, let me share some tips to help you deal with the pain.

There are two types of body discomforts: one you have before the meditation and one you have during the meditation. People who have injuries or sickness, they can still meditate because they accept the fact that the pain will stay with them 24/7. Acceptance is the key to deal with the pain or any kind of discomfort. Once we can bring the mind to accept something, we don’t put too much attention to it and we can draw our attention on the meditation techniques instead.

However, the discomfort felt during the meditation is the problem because most people can’t accept the fact that they will feel uncomfortable during their meditation. As a result, they tend to put too much attention to the pain and lose the focus and balance. When we meditate, there are two volumes: pain and peace. If the volume of peace is more than the pain, don’t pay attention to the pain and you will be fine. But if the volume of pain is getting higher or more than the amount of peace, it will be no longer possible not to pay attention to it. It’s better to move the body, adjust the posture and continue meditating this way.

Can we really do something to reduce the pain volume? First, we need to add flexibility and good blood flow to the body. The flexibility from stretching and yoga practice helps us sit still without moving for a longer period of time. Likewise, the good blood flow makes the body more relaxed and draws the attention away from any discomfort. This is possible by working out, exercising or having a massage regularly. Second, a good meditation posture reduces the pain. The proper allocation of weight when we sit and meditate prevents some parts of the body from bearing too much weight. The weight should be equally allocated on the front and the back side. Make sure also to keep the back straight to reduce the back pain in the long run. Using the right chair and cushion to support your seating also reduces the volume of pain. Third, it’s okay to move when you feel discomfort. You don’t have to torture yourself and sit like a robot without moving at all. So, moving now and then is possible. But if you have to keep moving every 1 minute, it means there is something else to be fixed first.

Some pain will disappear when you open your eyes and stop meditation. If you have this kind of pain, sometimes you need to put on the heart of a warrior and ignore the pain. This kind of pain is just a test and it will disappear when you no longer pay attention to it.

LP John a.k.a Monk John, who once a pianist, a photographer, and a computer programmer, has become a Theravada Buddhist Monk for 12 years after finished his PhD in Telematics. With the knowledge from his tech background, he has pioneered in developing the biggest free online self-development and meditation platform that has users from over 200 countries and territories. He travels the world and gives his insights on mindfulness, meditation and Buddhist philosophy for detoxing, balancing and enriching life of the modern world to individuals, NGOs, government agencies, universities, and companies (such as Google, Orange, Ogilvy, Teamwork, etc.) in 65 countries.

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