Four Stages of Meditation

Healing & Meditation

Every day more and more people get attracted to meditation.

Maybe they are not spiritual seekers, “going miles for enlightenment,” but merely people who live in a competitive and hectic world trying to balance their life; sensitive employees of businesses with a responsibility overload, feeling that there must be something that really helps them to let go of stress and tensions, and makes them sleep better and act more adequate during the day.

A business training, like a computer training, learning a skill that improves effectiveness, is popular all over the world. It is a win-win situation; the company keeps their employees qualified (fit for use), the person develops useful skills. One of the new and effective trainings is mindfulness training: learning how to get in contact with your body, your breath and silence your mind. I predict that in this century, mindfulness training for individuals and companies will grow big.

Osho has often talked about ‘meditation in the marketplace’ and how meditation is to become a way of living.

So remember, meditation should be fun, it should not be like work. You should not do it like a religious man, you should do it like a gambler. Play, do it for fun, like a sportsman not a businessman! It should be fun, and then all the skill will be available, then it will flower by itself. You will not be needed. No effort is needed. Simply your whole being has to be available, your whole energy has to be available. Then the flower comes by itself.”

Osho, The Empty Boat, Ch 6


In the world of businesses and companies however, there is no talk about Awareness, The Four Noble Truths, Meditation, The Eightfold Path, or Enlightenment. It is a different language they use.

The following stages are initially described as ‘Four stages for learning any new skill’. The theory was developed by Noel Burch in the 1970s, later it has been frequently attributed to Abraham Maslow.

1. Unconscious incompetence
The individual does not understand or know how to do something and does not necessarily recognize the deficit. They may deny the usefulness of the skill. The individual must recognize their own incompetence, and the value of the new skill, before moving on to the next stage. The length of time an individual spends in this stage depends on the strength of the stimulus to learn.

2. Conscious incompetence
Though the individual does not understand or know how to do something, he or she does recognize the deficit, as well as the value of a new skill in addressing the deficit. The making of mistakes can be integral to the learning process at this stage.

3. Conscious competence
The individual understands or knows how to do something. However, demonstrating the skill or knowledge requires concentration. It may be broken down into steps, and there is heavy conscious involvement in executing the new skill.

4. Unconscious competence
The individual has had so much practice with a skill that it has become “second nature” and can be performed easily. As a result, the skill can be performed while executing another task. The individual may be able to teach it to others now.

Yes, meditation is a skill.

Marc, Osho News

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