I have been meditating for a month now and doing Hond Sau and Aum meditation. I have been hearing humming and buzzing sound in my ears continuously recently, which is a bit distracting too. This sound is quite high at night. I also feel my head aching as if it will burst out. What could be causing this? Please guide.

—Pooja, India


Dear Pooja,

I am a person who is afflicted with ringing in the ears.  I have also been a meditation teacher for many decades and what you report sounds similar to tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and is not likely the consequence of your meditation practice. There is no official “cure” for tinnitus, if indeed that’s what you have, but that doesn’t mean the world out there doesn’t purport to offer all manner of remedies.  YouTube alone has maybe a dozen, consisting of exercises or diets. Maybe some of them can be helpful.

Ringing in the ears is always louder at night because one lies down and is inactive. During daily activity, your awareness is centered more in the senses and thus in the world around you. You’re simply too busy to pay much attention to the sounds.

It is also possible and very common that to whatever extent your meditation practice is a source, especially, for feeling pressure in the head, you are simply concentrating too hard and with the sort of physical and mental tension that most people associate with the act of concentration. Relaxation is the first stage of meditation and is vitally important.

Because the practice is new to you and because it requires concentration, it is not uncommon for new meditators to report some pressure. This might also be an outcome of the instruction which we give to look up through the point between the eyebrows (spiritual eye). I have counselled many students in various ways to find that perfect “sweet” spot where, looking up and through this point, becomes natural, pleasant, and enjoyable, devoid of tension. I myself used to get headaches when I first began to meditate regularly because I didn’t quite get this right. Since you didn’t specifically address this question I won’t take the subject any further at this time.

RELAX, RELAX, RELAX!!!!!!!!!!! Meditation should be soothing, pleasant and bearing the “juice of the grape of” PEACE! Practice devotion through chanting, especially, and be sure to stretch the body before sitting (hatha yoga, energization exercises, etc.). This will help you relax also. OK?

Joy and blessings to you,
Nayaswami Hriman
Seattle WA USA