Meditation misconception — Meditation will get you to nirvana/enlightenment fast.
I think a lot of us have fallen for this one. I know I have. This modern world has given all of us that fast food mentality. Instant gratification is in order. We want it now. Right now. Even when it comes to meditation.
Let’s not forget that the Buddha took more than six years in his last life to reach enlightenment. And he took million of lives more to reach the last life to finally be able to reach Nibbana. Yes, enlightenment is not necessarily a one life deal. Does it mean you can achieve enlightenment in this life? Of course not, you can if you do the necessary.
However, you can’t expect to start meditating and directly be blissed out of your skull. That’s not how it works. In the beginning, things can be turbulent, intense, and draining. That’s not meditation. That’s just the mind detoxing from the base unwholesomeness you have been carrying around.
Mediation after the first stages will get progressive and the difference will be subtle and sometimes hard to grasp. The late David Hawkins said that when you start to let go and surrendering you can be deceived into believing that there is no progress. For one simple reason — the consciousness level you were at is no longer there.
You are now at a new level of consciousness. The previous one is gone. Sometimes you can still have remnants but that just means you still have some letting go to do. I spent 3 months in a meditation center when I was 19 years of age and I have been meditating every day for the last five years.
If I were to tell you what results I have “gained” from meditation. It would just be speculation because there is no way for me to be certain that A led to B. Of course, I know that I am a changed person but it’s a progressive change. A moment to moment change over time. Subtly and slowly you are getting closer to the ultimate liberation.
Please, when you meditate, do not set expectations. Whether they are big or small, it does not matter. Meditation is not about the results you can get. Meditation is freeing yourself from the cravings, yearnings, and desires.
Stillness is the result of letting go. Expectations will just make your mind more restless. Expectations will drain you. Stillness will energize you.