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What significance should be held to sensations experienced during basic meditation. I have smelt a scent during meditation of something I recognize – does that mean anything?

“Hi, I was wondering what significance should be held to sensations experienced during basic meditation. Normally, when I do basic meditation: grounding, cleansing (of self), checking my aura out for any unclean/unwanted energy, clearing my mind of stress, etc, I don’t get any special sensations, other than a general feeling of calm, peacefulness, and relaxation.

However, recently (Shortly before sending this message, in fact) I was grounding myself in preparation for some basic energy work, and suddenly caught a scent. I didn’t notice it for a couple of minutes, but when I was almost done with the grounding and cleansing, sending the alien and unwanted energies that sometimes get stuck in my aura back to the earth, where they can be cleansed and safe, I realised that I was smelling something. When I came out of the meditation, I recognized the scent as an herb.

What does it mean, that I caught this scent during meditation? Would it mean this herb carries personal significance for me?
I can easily look up the properties of the herb myself; I was just wondering what smelling it mid-meditation meant. I am in an area of the house away from where it is stored, and all the way across the room from where I have a small pouch filled with this and 2 other herbs to make my things smell nice, so it wouldn’t have wafted over here; there’s hardly any air circulation, and certainly not from that corner of the room. Any insight is much appreciated; thank you!
The K.”

Dear K,

Sensing scents during mediation is not that uncommon, actually. The scents are either something you recognize (which in your case you did), or something you don’t and is usually either pleasant or foul. During meditation, especially if you’re in a visualization-state of meditation, we often feel, hear, sense, smell and maybe even taste when we’re seeing in deep meditation. Of course this can only happen when in a deep state of meditation – usually.

Pleasant smells are usually a positive/good thing and could symbolize an answer to a question you’ve been seeking. Or a sign letting you know you’re on the right track. It could also mean that there is a presence/deity with you – that smell might not be associated with them specifically, but just to let you know they’re there. Or it could just be your inner conscience letting you know that you’re safe and in a protected area. There really is no one true meaning behind it. It is what you make of it.

When the smells are foul – well, it’s pretty much the opposite of everything I said above about the smell being pleasant. But in most cases, it symbolizes when a negative or harmful presence is around or near. The most common foul smells are the scent of sulfer, a burnt smell or smoke. If you watch any horror/exorcism movies, you’ll almost always see that they use the “smelling of sulfer to associate it with the devil and possession.”

I use herbs quite frequently in my practice. I cleanse, dry, ground and use them all in the same area. I only use specific herbs and I know exactly how the smell, fresh, grounded and as an incense. But I often smell herbs that are completely new to me, even when my own incense is burning – but usually, right around when I notice the different scent and it clicks that it’s not the same scent, that’s when it usually goes away and my incense smell again fills my nose. The point is: in my own experience and practice, and because I do a lot of spirit work, I just associate that with a presence of a spirit. I have now named three spirits after what their scents smell like and I can recognize them whenever they visit me. I don’t believe they mean any harm or have any real business here. It’s probably just curiosity. Spirits can feel our energy and our energy is usually at its peak when we’re meditating, so it’s probably just curiosity to find out where this immense energy is coming from.

Moral of the story: As long as you’re keeping your area and meditation safe and protected and regularly cleansing yourself and your aura, sensing scents is a good thing. If it’s frequent, it’s probably a curious wanderer. If it’s not so frequent or rare, it’s probably a sign or an answer. It’s really how you feel about it – how it makes you feel during and after you smell it and what you think it means. It could be any of the things I mentioned or none of them at all. Meditation and the things that come to us during it is such a personal thing, that you won’t be finding books or much information on it because of just that… it’s personal. It’s different for anyone and everyone. What I have said above is just a general explanation of what I think and believe, and what has happened to me past and present during my practice and own meditations.

I hope I have been able to help you and give you some insight of what your experience could mean and represent.

Blessed Be,



4 responses to “What significance should be held to sensations experienced during basic meditation. I have smelt a scent during meditation of something I recognize – does that mean anything?

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  2. Deepi ⋅

    Interesting question and answer. When doing pranayam a few days back I repeatedly smelt something pleasant when breathing in from the right nostril but could not figure out what the smell was. The following morning I smelt onions doing the same aalon vilom pranayam. Thereafter, haven’t smelt anything for the past 10 to 12 days. Could it have any meaning?

  3. Kenneth ⋅

    Hi Sir,

    I was doing meditation last when I starts to feel the transition towards the energy feeling my body, I smell perfume or flower in my house suddenly. I heard something not right and stop immediately But the smell actually disappear upon waking up. The smell like someone just walk past me in my house when I am alone .

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