When Should I Stop Using Earplugs?



I am using earplugs for external sound obstruction since one & half years, during meditation. For how long should continue with earplugs?

Please guide me.

Thank you.

—Bhaskar, India


Dear Bhaskar,

There is no rule when to take off the earplugs. If you feel benefitted, use them forever. It’s just like when they say to meditate in a dark room, because it makes it easier to see the inner light.

However, earplugs are passive pratyahara (withdrawal from the senses). Try to make it active: try to listen with your ears inside, as if you could hear your breath or whatever you are concentrating on. This is active pratyahara, or in Yogananda’s words, “reversing the searchlight of the senses”. You actively listen inside, watch inside, feel inside, and even smell and taste inside. This makes the inner life become quite alive.

All the best for your meditative efforts,