Meditation Is a Powerful Mental Tool—and For Some People It Goes Terribly Wrong

Shayla Love in Vice:

Last November, on the Monday before Thanksgiving, David* was sitting in traffic on his drive home from work. He was suddenly overwhelmed by the realization that everything he experienced was filtered through his brain, entirely subjective, and possibly a complete fabrication.

“Not a unique or deep thought to be sure, but I felt the world drop out from under me and experienced panic—and a certainty that, if I chose to, I could go insane at that very moment,” he tells me. He rolled down the window, turned on the radio, and carefully made his way home.

That night, he couldn’t fall asleep. He would get very tired, come close to nodding off, and then a jolt of energy would shock him awake. “I was very shaken, suffering chest tension and nausea,” he says. “This continued unabated for six days during which I estimate I slept for a total of six hours. On Sunday evening I went to the emergency room.”

David had a hunch about what had caused his panic attack: his meditation practice.

More here.