Have you ever dreamed of going beyond your conscious self?
There’s a way.
It’s a technique called self-transcendence, and though it may sound like some sci-fi, woo-woo endeavor, it’s also a scientifically proven state of mind, and reaching it does wonders for your physical and mental health.
Conveniently, transcendence meditation is easy to do — though difficult to master — and 99% of the population can give it a shot on their own without issue or guided instruction.
Interested in learning more?
Let’s unpack it together below.
- What Does It Mean to Transcend Spiritually?
- What Is Meditation for Transcendence?
- What Are the Benefits of Spiritual Transcendence Meditation?
- How to Practice a Meditation for Spiritual Transcendence
- What Happens If You Transcend?
- What Mantras Should You Use for Transcending Spiritually?
What Does It Mean to Transcend Spiritually?
We can launch satellites into space and split atoms, yet the essence of consciousness eludes us.
Over the past several decades, researchers have made significant progress in mapping the cranial and cerebral activity of people in various states of awareness, and their work has yielded considerable insight into the mechanics of mindfulness and meditation.
Yet, the consciousness code remains uncracked.
Due to the puzzling nature of awareness, transcendence exists in a suspended state between science and spirituality.
For some, it’s a religious experience. For others, it’s a matter of psycho-physiological optimization. Either way, here are a few facts:
- When people reach an elevated meditative stage, their brain produces more theta and alpha waves, sending the subject into a deeply relaxed state of awareness.
- Most psychologists, neurological researchers, and spiritual practitioners agree that transcendence has at least three aspects: ego, self, and spiritual. Transcending the ego refers to going beyond the conscious self; transcending the self relates to surpassing individuality; spiritual transcendence refers to going beyond space and time.
- People who maintain mindfulness routines report having “transcendent” experiences, asserting that they recognize themselves past their egos.
It’s important to note that reaching elevated states of transcendence (consciousness) doesn’t make a person “better” — spiritually or cognitively — than others. It’s simply a state of being.
Reaching it takes practice, and the benefits are numerous, but people who achieve it don’t have a lock on enlightenment anymore so than anyone else.
What Is Meditation for Transcendence?
Meditating for transcendence is a mantra-based, brain-training technique. The goal is to “transcend” — or rise above, exceed — your quotidian self, which involves emptying your head.
Though similar, the mantra approach differs slightly from the mindfulness one. The former is about intently concentrating on a single sound (internal or external), word, or phrase; the latter is about heightening one’s awareness of the present moment.
When meditating for transcendence, mantras serve as a shield between individuals and the outside world.
Focusing on that one thing declutters the brain, allowing the kernel of the mind responsible for self-healing to “take a breath” and stretch, which triggers the release of calming, feel-good chemicals.
What Are the Benefits of Spiritual Transcendence Meditation?
Spiritual transcendence meditation confers numerous benefits to practitioners. Notably, just 20 minutes twice a day can change your brain for the better and optimize your neuroendocrine system.
Let’s look at six other boosts that your body, mind, and soul will enjoy with sustained transcendence meditation practice.
Relieves Stress and Anxiety
If you’re chasing inner peace, try a mantra-meditation technique. It feasts on stress and anxiety — gobbles it right up.
In a way, this type of wellness work is similar to meeting up with a good friend after work for wine and a venting session.
Those moments are so enjoyable and helpful because we’re able to dump our woes out of our heads, and the wine serves as an emotional lubricant.
Since transcendent meditation is so effective at relieving the mind of pesky emotional states, it’s a fantastic tool to help people cope with trauma, balance emotions, and feel better all around.
Decreases Symptoms Associated With Chronic Pain
Pain management involves the body’s ability to produce certain hormones and react to pain signals in the best possible way. Meditating to the point of transcendence assists in this process.
According to study results published by the American Osteopathic Association, meditation helped “patients with chronic pain and depression,” which led to “significant improvement in participant perceptions of pain, mood, and functional capacity.”
Lowers Blood Pressure
Meditation is an excellent addition to any heart-healthy “menu.”
It calms the parasympathetic nervous system, regulates your blood flow, and optimizes hormone release, which lessens stress and lowers blood pressure — a boon for your cardiovascular system.
Our bodies and minds appreciate it when we make time to slow down. It gives them time to relax and repair, which leads to better physiological and mental health.
When operating at peak performance, we have the mental space to think clearly, discard implicit suggestions that don’t serve us (instead of internalizing them), act kindly, and be our best.
As such, we gain a deeper understanding of others and ourselves through meditation.
Healing is about re-establishing a manageable mind-body connection, which is short-circuited by illness and accident.
Study results looking at the link between healing and meditation are so encouraging that the practice is increasingly considered a curative science, not just a spiritual endeavor.
Enjoy Higher Life Satisfaction
People who regularly engage in transcendence meditation enjoy higher levels of feel-good hormones — like oxytocin — coursing through their bloodstream.
Resultantly, they’re more balanced, make better decisions, and thus build more fulfilling, meaningful lives teeming with purpose.
How to Practice a Meditation for Spiritual Transcendence
Practicing spiritual transcendence via mantra work is one of the more accessible forms of meditation. To start, you don’t need to stress about your mantra.
While we recommend using a phrase that resonates with you, it doesn’t necessarily have to be meaningful. Moreover, you needn’t twist yourself into a pretzel to experience the effects.
So how’s it done? Let’s take a look.
1. Establish Your Mantra
Before sitting down for a transcendence meditation session, pick your mantra. Some people use Sanskrit and Vedic words; others use phrases in their native tongue or another foreign language.
Find something that rolls off your tongue and resonates with your soul. Don’t worry if the first few you try don’t work. Eventually, you’ll stumble upon your words.
2. Get Comfortable
The first order of business is getting comfy. Some say you shouldn’t cross your arms and legs; others insist you should.
The choice is yours. Just do whatever feels most comfortable — especially if you’re a beginner. You can:
- Sit on a chair or the edge of a bed with your feet on the floor
- Lay down
- Sit in easy pose or another meditation asana
- Use a meditation stool, bench, or pillow
Also, set an alarm for the amount of time you want to sit.
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3. Calm Your Parasympathetic Nervous System
Your parasympathetic nervous system is a nerve network that relaxes the body after periods of stress or danger.
It plays a huge role in regulating our reactions, and you can activate it with deep breaths.
Close your eyes and relax your body. Consciously release tension residing in your muscles and mind. Then slowly take a deep breath in through your nostrils.
Feel it enter your nasal passage and travel down to your lungs. Notice how your diaphragm works in conjunction to pump the air throughout your body.
Do between three and 15 deliberate breaths — whatever it takes to calm your flow.
4. Engage With Your Mantra
You’ve already chosen your mantra; now it’s time to use it. How? You have options.
Some people say the word in their heads, others make or find recordings of another person repeating the phrase, and others opt to chant it aloud.
Your job is to keep saying it over and over…and over again. Don’t stop until the alarm rings.
5. Keep Refocusing
Yes, meditation, in all its forms, is about calming and concentrating — but it’s equally about control. Specifically, guiding your thoughts back to the goal at hand is part of nearly every meditative activity.
You’re human. Your brain was built to think. Plus, we live in a socio-cultural atmosphere that encourages short attention spans.
So it will wander when meditating, and that’s OK. It’s natural. The key is to be able to recognize it quickly and refocus.
6. Keep Going
The first few times you try spiritual transcendence meditation, concentrating can be challenging.
To cement the habit, start with just five minutes, two times a day. Once you get the hang of it, increase your minutes. Your ultimate goal is 20 minutes twice daily, for a total of 40 minutes.
What Happens If You Transcend?
How does a person experience ego transcendence?
After practicing mantra-based meditation for a while, the first step of transcendence is egocentric. The aim is to, for lack of a better term, “step” outside yourself — your conscious self. When it happens, you may feel like:
- You’re looking down at yourself
- Detached from your “normal” state
- You’re swirling (but it isn’t a scary feeling)
- You’re able to see a slightly different dimension
- You’re “high” or a bit lightheaded
What Mantras Should You Use for Transcending Spiritually?
Which mantras are best for transcending spiritually? Again, there are no hard-and-fast rules, and mantra choice is a personal decision.
That said, we’ve picked a handful of ideas that work well when transcendence meditation is on tap.
Aum or Om
Om, sometimes Aum and pronounced “ohm,” is considered the Universe’s “primal cry.” Meaning “It Is, Will Be, or To Become,” chatting or listening to chants of Om connect us with the essence of existence.
Interestingly, most music falls into the 440-hertz range. Om vibrates at 432 hertz, and the lower frequency calms brain waves.
Spiritually speaking, Om represents life’s original pulse and celebrates the birth, death, and reincarnation cycle.
Ham Sah (I Am That I Am)
Ham Sah — or “I Am That I Am” — comes from the Jewish tradition. According to the Hebrew Torah, it’s what G-d said to Moses when the school teacher asked for the deity’s name.
Using Ham Sah as a mantra affirms the conscious presence of something greater than ourselves.
“Buddho” is The Buddha’s spiritual title, not his name. Linked to Mahayana or Vajrayana Buddhism, this mantra holds a prominent place in the Theravada tradition.
A call for peace and knowledge, “Buddho” is a good option for individuals who crave enlightenment. It also supports loving kindness cultivation.
Pronounced ho-oh-pono-pono, Ho’oponopono is an ancient Hawaiian mantra meaning “I love you; I’m sorry; please forgive me; thank you.”
It’s a potent mantra that works wonders for people consumed with shame, anger, or resentment. Ho’oponopono is also powerful when working through challenging family strife.
Some people consider it a healing mantra that polishes one’s karmic imprint and makes way for a new start.
Om Mani Padme Hum
Meaning “Hail the Jewel in the Lotus,” Om Mani Padme Hum is a Tibetan mantra to help practitioners reach Chenrezig, the ultimate state of compassion.
Om Mani Padme Hum aligns you with the cosmos, strips your ego and biases, and carries you toward that which is spiritual. This is an excellent mantra to try when you want to feel whole, loved, and in sync with the Universe.
Striving for spiritual transcendence is a worthwhile pursuit, even if you’re not religious or faithfully minded.
Even though scientists aren’t 100% positive about the whys, they know that mantra-based meditation supports a healthier mind and body.
So give yourself a leg up and give transcendence a try. You may just stumble into a new hobby that elevates your life to the next level.