White light meditation is a popular little practice. You can use it almost anywhere to lift your mood.
If you’ve got a few moments free throughout the day, I highly recommend learning this practice to fill some of those extra minutes with guided white light meditation.
Visualization meditations have a prominent place in most of the world’s contemplative traditions. Many religious teachers have realized the effectiveness of using “thought-objects” as a means of achieving deeper experiences.
What Is White Light Meditation?
Many people who meditate have had unusual encounters with white light. They find the experience perplexing. There’s no logical source for this light; so where does it originate?
Individuals experience this white light in different ways. One meditator might see giant glowing white balls, while another one might see tiny comet-streaked white sparkles.
Experiencing a white light during meditation is common, but subjective.
Some people find their first white light experience so startling that they cannot resist opening their eyes. Do not worry!
Veteran meditators and experts agree that white light flashes are normal during meditation. In fact, white lights can be seen as good signs.
They suggest that you have succeeded in unifying the mind, soul, and body in your meditation.
Exploring the Science Behind White Light Meditation
Have you heard the term “The Third Eye” before?
It’s a common name for one of your body’s seven chakras. Your Third Eye opens after you spend enough time (months or even years) practicing regular meditation.
It is after this activation that you begin to see white light when you meditate. It’s even possible to start seeing shapes and colors. The opening of your third eye will reveal many things.
Resist the temptation to focus too hard on the white lights once you start seeing them. Keep your concentration dispersed as you did when you first learned how to meditate.
To understand the white lights, you need to know how your mind creates images. Your memory is always recording impressions and experiences.
When you recall such a moment, your mind is reproducing the original impressions. This is how you’re able to summon up the images of people, things, and places that you’ve seen in the past.
Your brain’s memory centers also play a vital role in imagination and vision.
Modern psychologists divide the mind into two parts: the conscious mind and the subconscious. Each part obeys very different rules.
It is in the subconscious mind that you’ll find your stored experiences and your beliefs. The conscious mind concerns itself with recording or creating scenes during your waking hours.
The more you concentrate while meditating, it’s more common for a white light event to occur. Although your first exposure to the light may feel frightening, the experience is rewarding, and you’ll adapt quickly.
Certain Buddhist schools of meditation call for intentionally visualizing a holy light. An intentional visualization is not what we’re discussing here.
The white light is an unintended experience that almost feels like an outside force.
Tokpa Karlo gives an excellent purpose for meditation in his Mind Talk. He says meditation is a tool for developing love and compassion. Meditation also anchors the meditator in the here and now.
It teaches one to appreciate the beauty of the moment. This is how meditation delivers peace of mind and promotes lovingkindness.
Experiencing a white light visualization is not a necessity or a goal to work towards when you meditate.
Daily meditation should enrich your life in multiple ways: mentally, physically, and psychologically. As long as you continue making small but positive developments, you are doing well.
The Benefits of White Light Meditation
- Enhances the feelings of bodily well-being.
- It has similar effects to “loving-kindness” (Metta Bhavana) practice: feelings of connectedness and self-esteem, amongst others.
- The visualization can be used to help “clear” any painful emotions you may be experiencing
- The practice is best done seated.
- Take a handful of deep, calming breaths. Let each exhalation be a “letting go” of any bodily tension.
- Imagine a small point of white light at your solar plexus (about two inches above your navel). It represents pure, rejuvenating energy.
- At a pace that suits you, imagine the light gently expanding with each inhalation, grow brighter as it does so.
- Continue until the light fills your whole body. Then allow it to expand beyond the borders of your body to emanate out in all directions.
- Dwell in the presence of this healing light for as long as you wish
- If you have been feeling particularly strained, you may wish to visualize the light clearing away these negative feelings in your body.
- This practice can be done either lying down or sitting.
- On your next inhalation, imagine that a gentle stream of white light is flowing into the base of your spine, following its path up your back and into and out of the top of your head.
- On the exhalation imagine this white light beginning at your head, down your spine, and out of your body at the base.
- Visualize it as cleaning the body of any impurities (negative thoughts and emotions) as it flows up and down.
- You may wish to simply focus on the sensations instead of visualizing white light. Either approach is good.
- If you struggle to visualize the light, or don’t find it particularly enjoyable, then you can replace it with a sense of the feelings in your body. Can you experience a growing feeling of warmth or compassion, originating at the same point as the white light?
- Remember, as best you can, to adopt a playful attitude. If you struggle to focus on both your breathing and the visualization don’t try and force yourself to “get it right.” You can forget about your breathing and just imagine the blossoming white light.
- You can replace the color with another if that’s your preference. Perhaps golden or indigo light, or a soft shade of calming blue.
Do not be afraid the next time your meditation practice shows you a flash of white light. Embrace it as one part of the greater experience.
Remember, too, the Buddhist precept that says nothing is exempt from the force of change. The universal quality of impermanence applies to meditation lights as well as all other things.
You may only experience the light in some meditation sessions and not in others. This is an acceptable and normal outcome.
Pure white light is a powerful form of energy. Embrace it when your meditation produces it. You can use this light as another tool to better understand yourself.
If you enjoyed this article you might also like our guided chakra meditation.