I feel myself having experiences that feel like dreaming, sleeping and being awake at the same time. What does this mean?
Dreaming, sleeping and being awake at the same time. This is a wonderful state of consciousness that we can achieve through meditation. This experience of dreaming, sleeping and being awake at the same time is what we call, transcendence.
In the Vedic tradition and understanding of the mind we have seven states of consciousness. The first three states are waking, sleeping and dreaming, as your experience during your meditation. The fourth state is transcendence, which means ‘the state beyond’. The next states consciousness is cosmic, god and the unity. We go to a deeper and deeper levels of consciousness when we meditate. We can spontaneously access all states of consciousness without meditation but for most people this is a rare experience that becomes less frequent as we approach adulthood. Regular meditation allows us to systematically access transcendence and the last three states of consciousness and cultivate the ability to experience them in adulthood.
Transcendence is the state of consciousness where the states of waking, dreaming and sleeping are integrated into one wholeness and we go beyond these three states into a quiet “place” within us. We can access the state of transcendence from any of the three states. But when we are awake we can access it through transcendence-based meditation techniques with application of our mantra.
When we silently repeat our mantra without moving our lips and tongue the mantra will “fade” away and we will experience moments of stillness and thoughtlessness with the quality of bliss. This is the state where our mind and senses are completely silent, but our consciousness is fully awake. We could experience transcendence for a millisecond or several minutes depending on our meditation experience. And this experience can be different from one meditation to the next one.
In addition, you may have experienced that your state of consciousness went beyond the ego and the intellect. We are identifying with who we truly are beyond the layers of our identity.
If we dig a little bit deeper and have a short look at our remaining states. Our fifth state, cosmic consciousness is the understanding of thepure consciousness that is my real self. The sixth state is god consciousness. This state lets us go deeper and closer to the pure level where everything is bliss. And the seventh state, unity consciousness, is the full awakening that always keep unfolding in the way of expansion and deepening, the oneness.
So, when you have experienced this blissful state of mind, you are on the right path of becoming an experienced meditator. With regular practice you will experience transcendence that will “stay” with you, not only when you are meditating, but in your day-to-day life. When you are awake, sleeping and in your dreams. So, continue to have a consistent meditation practice. Meditate twice a day for 20 minutes, once in the morning before breakfast and once in the afternoon, and you will continue to have this experience and move towards deeper levels and understanding. And remember that when our mind wanders into thoughts we easy and effortlessly return to our mantra and let go. And your next transcendence experience is just around the corner.