30 Day Meditation Challenge: Day 3

December 8, 2009:  Today I repeated the Ham-Sa/So-Ham meditation practice but changed the time of day.  I sat for meditation in the evening, after all my activities were done for the day.  Immediately prior to meditation, I had been out teaching yoga.  I found that I brought that “teacher/observer” quality to my meditation.  So, while I was physically quite relaxed and grounded, mentally I was unfocused.  Instead of just feeling the flow of prana, I was observing it and making mental notes.   I found myself thinking about how I would explain the sensation of the flow of prana to my students.  Or whether this was a meditation practice I could use in class.  My mind remained sort of distracted but, as my body felt calm, I continued to sit and just let the thoughts come and go.  After about 20 minutes, my “observer mind” decided that I wasn’t going to get any deeper so I started to draw my awareness back to my surroundings.  The meditation seemed semi-successful at best.  But then,  as I opened my eyes,  my body seemed to be swaying.  I started to pay close attention to my physical body to confirm that I was not actually moving.  And I wasn’t.  But, as  I drew my attention to my hands and fingers, I felt a strange sensation.  I recognized that they were hands and fingers but my mind couldn’t quite identify that these were “my” hands and fingers.  Rather they seemed to belong to “a” body but not one that I specifically identified with or felt part of.  Some meditators I know have described a sensation where they are actually hovering outside or above their own bodies and looking at them.  I’m not sure that I felt myself outside my body but I also couldn’t identify the body I was seeing as mine.  I have never felt this before and, while it is definitely a bit disconcerting, I tried to stay present with it for a few minutes and to just kind of go with the flow, looking at my hands, fingers, and legs as if they were just parts of the world around me rather than “me”.  Eventually, in order to bring myself back into “my body”, I had to actually move my fingers and hands and rub my legs.  So, physical contact snapped me back into a perception that these hands and legs were mine.    Post-meditation, I noticed a slight nausea, similar to the previous day’s practice.  But, it was not as intense and it passed more quickly.