Monday, 27 September 2010

Why does meditation make me angry?


I had an interesting question today, so I thought I'd share the answer:

Ques: twice after meditation I found myself very angry and I tried to express it in a safe way but did bite my husband's head off. Any thoughts on the matter. (from Judy in New Zealand)

My ans:
Yes, I do have very definite thoughts on the matter. Anger seems to be a VERY common reaction to meditation. People are usually confused by it, as you expect medtation to make you more peaceful and hence, less angry.

Meditation works to purify your mind. We all have thoughts that we don't want to have - emotions that we don't want to express, etc. No yogi wants to be an angry person. So, in the past, when this type of thought started to form, we suppressed it - much like sweeping dirt under the carpet. But, meditation is like an intense spring cleaning - you pick up the carpets and give them a good shake. All of the hidden 'dirt" come out. I think it is a necessary part of the purification process. However, it doesn't mean that you're supposed to bite your husband's head off - learn to witness your own thoughts (and emotions) in a detached manner. Observe the negative thoughts, but do not act on them.

Yoga Sutra, verse
1.12 abhyasa-vairagyabhyam tan nirodhah

"vrittis may be controlled by abhyasa (regular steady practice) and vairagya (detachment)".


  1. S-
    I really appreciate this post. It is thought provoking and very helpful. I know that I often avoid doing things that are good for me because I don't like the immediate response, but I know I'm only postponing 'carpet-cleaning'.
    Thank you

  2. I don't think this answers the question.I usually have a similar experience after different forms of meditation.During and immediately afterwards I experience a wonderful relaxed "high" but if I have contact with other people during the next couple of hours I find I can be extremely irritable- much more than I usually am.This makes me very unhappy because I can snap at someone who really doesn't deserve it and nearly always it takes me by surprise because I'm feeling serene.I don't get violent just irascible in a way that i don't like in others.I need more advice than just to observe it.I want to free myself of this reaction

  3. lets divide the entire meditation into 2 parts. the so called "high" we get is from the first part , let me call the first part "classroom session" and let me call the second part as "Mirror Session" the real thing begins when we get from classroom to "mirror session " ( the real world .. workplace , home, street , the supermarket etc..) Here we have to witness ourselves and the enviornment around us. here we have to be present to ourselves and everything that is in interaction with us. we will react in anger and in lust to people but then we will see it coming and there will be control with us and choice as to how to react , what word and emotion to produce . it's ecxtatic . . we will witness anger , lust , greed , insecurity etc.. but we will know that's it's coming and there will be no loss of control while producing a certain reaction. there will be a choice , the world will slow and wait for your reaction. you will watch it while it occurs, this is looking at ourselves while we react to others. the classroom session is just to provide a platform for the real deal, and that real thing is Witnessing ourselves and our impulsive behaviours , and a deep understanding shall evolve , and then you shall feel the "high" perhaps all the time ,it is like getting the Matrix.