I've been meditating for about 8 years. Recently I did a second vipassana 10 day silent retreat.

A few days in, when focussing on my face, my face got highly sensitive, and a strong tingling was felt in it. This feeling intensified when focusing more on the areas where I would place my attention. Even focusing on parts of the neck and throat would have the same effect on the face.

The sensations would last after meditation and subside after about an hour or so. My teacher assured me that it happens more often, and I should probably not focus too much on my face.

I'm slightly worried about it still, and decided to fully avoid the face area for now, and take it easy meditating altogether.

I was wondering if others had similar experiences, alternative interpretations, and other ways to work with it.

Thank you!


As you progress in meditation you will start feeling sensations in different parts of your body. At some point, you will feel sensations thought out the body.

There is nothing to get alarmed. Also, do not get attached to it. Simply continue your meditation.

Do not avoid any areas and also do not stay long in any area than others.


What you experienced is perfectly common. What's really going to blow your mind, however, is that the sensation you were feeling is probably always there. You are only experiencing at the forefront of consciousness because your mind is more relaxed and open during and just after a meditation session. What you are experiencing is really the meat and potatoes of Buddhist meditation practice. Our normal, day to day consciousness is utterly incapable of perceiving the vast majority of what constitutes reality. We go along, blissfully unaware, of all sorts of subtle details. When we sit, however, our mind begins to open to a very different subset of phenomenon. In the context of Buddhist practice, obviously we want use that bright, open, malleable, and unblemished mind (to paraphrase the Buddha) for the purposes of direct insight into the four noble truths, the destruction of the cankers, etc. as this kind of insight is unavailable to our mundane consciousness. That's the ideal, anyway. As we go along in our practice, however, that same luminous mind can also shine its beacon into other dark corners of reality. These are of less benefit, spiritually speaking. They can also be distracting or come to represent some fairly massive obstacles (e.g. in the form of attachment to non-ordinary experience). It's generally best to just let them go. They're just going to get in the way.

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