Meditation and Bipolar

For seven years I was a member of a meditation group.  It bordered on cult, but I didn’t care.  It’s kind of fun to be a part of a cult with secret knowledge and rituals.  It don’t hurt noboooody.  Plus, meditation does wonders for the mind and temperament, and lead to spiritual enlightenment.  We met a couple of times a week and had group meditations, initiation ceremonies, and retreats.   During that period, I meditated nearly every day for anywhere between thirty minutes to two hours.  It was a very calm period for me, but there were catches

Bipolar and meditation.  Here’s the thing.  If you struggle with grandiosity, delusions, and obsession as a component of your bipolar, then meditation can become a problem.  It’s a mind expanding activity already, but when you add those components to the mix, things can get out of control.  You might believe that you have special powers, for example.  It also can make things totally amazing.  I was tripping big time…drug free.  Also, group meditation opens up the possibility of boundary issues.  Group meditation is a very intimate experience.

After having a serious boundary issue with a female member of the group (in a fit of mania), I withdrew myself.  I stopped meditating altogether.  That was three years ago.

Then a couple of weeks ago, I was starting to sink into depression and anxiety.  I decided to try meditating.  And within a few minutes, something unlocked in me and I felt good.  I felt better than I had felt in months.  It faded after a few days, because  I didn’t meditate again.

Then my sister-in-law invited me to join the 21-Day Meditation Challenge.  I think it’s time to make this a habit again.  Even with the knowledge that I might get a little grandiose about it.  Meditation is a good thing.

21-day Meditation Challenge

I’ll be sure to share whether or not it helps me with mania, depression, anxiety, or insomnia.  And if I have any crazy trips, I’ll share it as well.  For example, if I should happen to encounter a deathless, disembodied, thousand-year-old naked yogi named Babaji, I’ll give you all the details.

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5 thoughts on “Meditation and Bipolar

  1. I enjoyed this insightful post — I had never thought of meditation as a possible issue for those of us with bipolar. I guess everything has its dark side! But now that you recognize the dangers, you can go back to meditating without falling into the trap. Awesome!

  2. Do share! 🙂 I’ll be looking out for whatever you encounter during the challenge. I used to meditate too, but looking back, I can recognize the same issues you raised – I went as far as to seriously try telekinesis. I’ve been thinking about trying meditating again recently, as well.

  3. Pingback: Lollipop Tuesday — Chopra Center Meditation Challenge | Anita Simpson Blog

  4. I love the concept of meditation, yet I do not know if there is a specific way to do it….
    I wouldn’t be one to join a group or anything either.
    Maybe a Meditation for dummies book might work for me… lol

    • Group meditation is interesting. Meditation for me is all about energy. Taking energy in and using it to cleanse your mind and fill your consciousness. And when you do that in a group, the energy is multiplied. There’s a group energy that lifts you up higher than you could go on your own. The problem with a bipolar in a group is that we feel emotion in such a powerful way. We don’t need our energy lifted if we’re prone to mania. And if you have boundary issues…well, that’s a whole other bed-time story. I’m not gonna lie, meditating by yourself it difficult at first. There are many methods, but all of them pretty much center around the breath. You don’t need a class to figure it out.

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