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Meditate that pain away

Discussion in 'Alternative Therapies' started by Cort, Jul 1, 2009.

  1. cansado

    cansado

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    I can almost always meditate the pain away unless it is bad bad muscle pain or migraines... And I have been only meditating for about 6 months now but I practise about 2-3x a day. I also see bright lights while meditating and it has a great impact on my well being. I still feel horrific but meditating and breathing excercises have helped most of all the treatments I have tried.
    Thanks for the article!
  2. Rsmy59

    Rsmy59

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    I felt the same way about meditation ~ that I couldn't focus or calm my mind enough to meditate, but I completed a free 21-day meditation challenge through the Chopra Center and they tell you that it's alright to have thoughts and be aware of your surroundings because we're alive. However, when you realize you are somewhere else in your mind, you bring your thoughts back to the present. It took the stress out of what I thought meditation should be and I started to see the benefit. The Chopra Center is starting another challenge on October 11th and I think it's worth checking out. Here's the link: www.chopra.com/meditationchallenge/fall
  3. wciarci

    wciarci Wenderella

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    I tried so many times but could never meditate. I also can't be hypnotized. I think I am a control freak. However, that said, I do believe in the 'zone'. The zone is right brain and when I am painting or years back, running. I could find the zone and I loved it. So elusive now though. Nice thread.

    Wendy
  4. Noah_Scape

    Noah_Scape

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    I was going to start another thread on Meditation for pain, but here it is! Thanks Cort.

    I recently developed "Atypical Trigeminal Neuralgia", and the pain is off the charts. The first few attacks I just squirmed and waited for it to end, which took about 3 hours [normal Trigeminal Neuralgia attacks only last a few minutes].

    By the fourth or fifth time it happened, I decided to employ my meditation techniques. I started by getting my breathing into a steady and slow rythmn, and then I "looked right at the pain". I imagined being in a minature capsule that traveled along the Trigeminal nerve so I could see where the pain came from. I asked it to settle down.

    Just being that engaged with the pain keeps it from becoming an emotional thing.... "just the facts, please".

    The calming effect of breathing mindfully [being aware of everything to do with the breathing] helped a bit. Looking right at the pain helped the most.

    The attack still lasted a couple of hours, but I endured it a little easier, and that is a huge deal with this kind of pain. The squirming and moaning I did in the first attacks was not helpfull. In fact, just making a fist would make the pain spread out and intensify. I desperately wanted to run my hand through my hair but that spiked the pain too... the best I could do was sit still but my god it is utterly horrible pain.

    Meditation stopped all those "reactionary" movements.

    Famous meditation for pain quote:
    "Pain and Suffering are not the same thing... Suffering is a REACTION to pain".

    Think on that a bit. Meditation allows us to choose how to react to whatever. We CAN choose to not suffer, even though we cannot choose to be rid of the pain.

    Meditation is a tool I have used for over 30 years of chronic pain, but it has never been more valuable than now with these Face Pains.
  5. Noah_Scape

    Noah_Scape

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    Breath

    Jody is onto something with praying to the pain. Cort mentioned toning down the neural pathways, which is, in my humble opinion, totally related to what Jody is doing.

    At risk of sounding like a know-it-all, I would add that some meditation practices "anchor the meditation with breathing". One way to do that, which I find effective for Fibro pains, is to get into slow deep breathes for a few minutes [while gently dismissing the random thoughts that interrupt your focus on breathing], and then imagine you are "breathing in from the painfull spot", as if the air you breathe is coming into that spot and not your lungs and mouth, and then breathe OUT of the painfull spot. Visualise it happening like that.

    Its good to add your own twist to it - I started imagining/visualising that after the air went into the pain spot it became RED with the energy of the pain, and that when I exhaled I did it from my mouth and it had been "calmed" by my lungs and was now BLUE, I exhale a cloud of blue.

    Actually, instead of focusing on painfull spots, I mostly do this breathing visualisation in a "body scan" where I go through each body part and relax each part with a few slow deep breathes. That seems to take away a lot of my Fibro pains. I sure feel calm after 20 minutes of that.

    PS - they say to also imagine "breathing OUT of the painfull spot" instead of out through the mouth or nose, so do what suits you. '

    Oh, I see now... I really do sound like a know-it-all. Hmmmm, I gotta work on that...
  6. Wayne

    Wayne Senior Member

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    Hi Noah,

    Very interesting and insightful posts. Thanks for taking the time to share. And NO, you don't sound like a know-it-all. You sound like somebody who's generously sharing what has been very helpful for you. I appreciate it! :Retro smile:

    Wayne
  7. Noah_Scape

    Noah_Scape

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    Thanks Wayne.

    I also find "slow Yoga" very helpfull for pain and anxiety [to get rid of them, I mean, lol]. Some Yoga styles move quickly but for Fibro pains it helps to stretch them out for at least 3 breath cycles [in + out], and that also relaxes me.

    Being "in the moment" is easy when concentrating on a Yoga stretch. When the mind wanders, I go back to focusing on the breathing, and then return to concentrating on the Yoga pose feelings.
  8. Mr. Cat

    Mr. Cat Senior Member

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    I meditated pretty regularly for about 8 years. I was drawn to it as a way to manage physical and emotional responses to my illness. About 2 years ago, I started taking stimulating Chinese herbs, which made my mind too flighty to sink into deeper meditative states, and I stopped meditating for a while. I also noticed that during bouts of severe fatigue my mind/body was not getting much out of it, and I would stop until I started feeling better. I've been back at it fairly regularly recently, and this feels good.
    What I found interesting was that when I would do body-scanning or vipassana meditations, there were some parts of my body that it was difficult to keep attention on. I had pretty painful gastrointestinal problems for 7 years or so, and I think my mind compensated for this by dissociating from that part of the body to avoid feeling the pain that was there. I still have great difficulty in focusing attention there, or "thinking/acting from my gut." Similar for my heart chakra. For a while now, I've often done meditations on these two centers, in order both to strengthen my ability to stay with them, and to see what they may have to tell me. I do this with all my CFS symptoms - pain, tiredness, brain fog, etc., though I can't say I've had any great ah-has yet. It's an interesting pursuit, but with chronic pain, dissociation can often be a useful tool, and I do plenty of that too.
  9. Noah_Scape

    Noah_Scape

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    Very interesting, Mr. Cat. It seems to be an intuitive thing to know when to "look right at the pain", and when do disassociate.

    I just realised that I have never really focused on my gut pains when meditating, maybe because they just stop soon after I get started? Thanks for tweeking me to that!!

    I pretty well keep focused on the areas where there are muscles [relaxing them in body scan] and of course the breathing.
  10. Gavman

    Gavman Senior Member

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    Meditation is mad. I feel so much for having jumped the first hurdle.
    I used to meditate then go fill my mind up so much afterwards. One time i was angry and meditated, then told the drama of pulling me away to go away and then i could meditate so much more without feeling that self-sabotage pull.
    Best thing i found was to start running towards the pain, it takes a bit to retrain the mind to its relationship to pain. But now that i chase it during meditation, i feel so peaceful about life all the other time.
  11. valentinelynx

    valentinelynx Senior Member

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    Much believed myth about meditation: that you have to quiet your mind. That's impossible. So, you watch your mind blather, writhe, wander, etc. and work on not getting involved with what it's doing. When you find yourself having gotten caught up in some train of thought, just drop it and go back to watching the "monkey mind." Eventually, it will start to slow and quiet on its own, if you don't encourage it by "buying into" its chatter. Also, meditation can be quite unpleasant. Being alone with your noisy, mean mind without distraction is often not a very nice experience (for me, anyway!). But, again, the practice of just letting it be the way it is, without encouraging any thought train, good or bad, will allow it to calm down on its own. I've read this process described as being like letting the sediment precipitate out of muddy water. Only works if you let it sit without stirring. By and by the water is clear. The results are gradual. No immediate rewards, unlike eating ice cream or watching TV. But the rewards are potentially limitless, they say. Me, I have to make myself do it, like exercise. But I never, ever regret doing it (unlike excercise!)
  12. Gavman

    Gavman Senior Member

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    there are periods of longer and longer stillness in the mind. And where we are listening to our bodies.
    The monkey starts to lose his tactile grip sometimes.
    I do agree that its not the purpose or the result of meditation though.
  13. Nielk

    Nielk

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    I just watched a documentary where they help people who are in chronic pain. I don't think it's meditation. Maybe it's a type of meditation but, what they do is they teach the patient to go into a hypnotic state. When they are in that state, they are told to take control of their pain and like a dimmer light, to slowly diminish their pain until it's pretty much gone. They need a practitioner in the beginning to teach them how to achieve this state but, once they learn it, they can just do it on their own. It sounds like meditation but, on a deeper level. It sounds fascinating. Does anyone know or have experience with this?
  14. madietodd

    madietodd Senior Member

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    What's the name of the documentary? Maybe we could chase the information down via the credits?
  15. Nielk

    Nielk

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    It's called "The New Medicine" by dana Reeve (Christopher's wife)
    She had this film made while she was combating lung cancer after Christopher's death.
    It's about the mind-body connection and how medicine can improve by integrating that fact. Promoting doctor to treat patients as a whole. Treating the person who has a disease rather than treating the disease that a person happens to have.
  16. madietodd

    madietodd Senior Member

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    The film's website has great info/links, and it's available streamed on Netflix. Thanks!
  17. Nielk

    Nielk

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    That's how I watched it. Through streaming on Netflix.

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