40-day journey into meditation with Muse (the brain-sensing headband)
Kal M Sayid

Hey there,

This is an amazing post. I thought I’d drop by and provide some information on emotions. I remember you writing that anger didn’t affect your sessions, but sadness did. Here’s some interesting info back from when I studied emotion psychology.

There’s two types of emotions: basic and self-conscious. There are 6 basic emotions happiness, sadness, anger, fear, disgust, and surprise. (Yep, surprise is an emotion; it’s weird, but it registers and performs _exactly_ like the other 5.) There are also a plethora of self-conscious emotions, but the main ones are pride, guilt, shame, embarrassment, hubris, and the list can go on…

You’ll notice though that we actually have quite a few “sad” self-conscious emotions. I think you may be interpreting shame, guilt, or embarrassment during your sessions as sadness. There are also very few self-conscious emotions which are variations of the anger emotion.

Basic emotions most like don’t interfere with meditation because of how primal they are. They’re located inside of the amygdala and help create those millisecond responses to events. Self-conscious emotions, however, are located in the prefrontal cortex and require you to give context to ones self and reflect on your behaviour or being.

Meditation to some people about trying to detach from being. Therefore, your sadness may be taking place in your prefrontal cortex and that could be why you’re not having such a good session.

Hope this info helps you out :)