Let me tell you about a recent trance experience I had. It was stronger, wilder and a whole lot weirder than my usual fare. When this sort of thing happens, it’s too great to keep to myself.
When talking to me about meditation and self-hypnosis, a lot of folk wonder about falling asleep during.
It’s easy enough to do when you relax and focus.
Generally, it’s not a problem. My philosophy is if you need sleep more than you need to focus, then your body will tell you.
But I get it. If you’re meditating, it’s nice to meditate. If you wanted a nap, you’d do that instead.
There are simple solutions to this. The easiest ones are to meditate while standing, walking, maybe even jogging. It’s a tougher mental workout, which creates better results. And you certainly won’t fall asleep doing this.
Anyway, I was a little rundown when I entered this trance. My body needed sleep, so I let it. The fact I could doze with such loud meditation music playing only shows how much I needed it.
I drifted off for who knows how long.
Then I woke up.
Because here’s the strange thing about deep hypnotic states – you can be wide awake yet feeling like you’re dreaming. Having tranced, slept and woken up in such a short time, I was straddling that wonderful state of consciousness where everything is intense and nothing seems quite real.
Lying there like this, with the music blaring, I had a nightmare.
I was awake, lucid and able to move.
And I was hallucinating.
The nightmare wasn’t anything scary. It wasn’t like a monster was chasing me (my monsters are scared of me these days). It was far more abstract, confusing and terrifying than that.
I rolled with it. With apologies to Mr Roosevelt, fear itself is nothing to fear.
It passed, as intense emotions like to do.
I started laughing.
Not chuckling or giggling. I’m talking belly laughs. Deep, booming, eye watering, breath impeding laughter.
And it didn’t stop.
I laughed for an embarrassingly long time.
Then it became a concerningly long time.
Then it was painful – there’s only so much laughter your ab muscles can take.
That was in the first five minutes. I swear I laughed for another ten or fifteen after that.
What was so funny?
I could explain the joke, but it barely makes sense to me.
Laughter is a release of tension. If you fall off your bike but don’t hurt yourself, you laugh. It lets everyone know to stop worrying.
That’s what this laughter was all about. I had a lot of worry and tension I needed to let go of. This is how my unconscious chose to do it.
Hey, I’m not complaining. It sure beats crying.