How can we achieve ecstasy through meditation?


The ecstasy (from the Greek έκστασις, ékstasis = beside oneself, ecstatic state; or εξíστασθαι, exhistasthai = step out of oneself, to be beside oneself) denotes a special state of consciousness with great devotion and the highest receptivity. Associated with this is stepping out of oneself, during which one's own feelings are placed above reality.

People sing and dance in the Sivanda Hall at the 2013 Yoga Vidya Music Festival

Ecstasy means "being outside of oneself". Ecstasy is a state of enthusiasm, the intoxicating trance, combined with loss of control through the mind. Ecstasy comes from the church Latin ecstasis, which in turn comes from the Greek ekstasis, stepping out of oneself. Ecstasy was originally used for spiritual highs:

Anyone who falls into a mystical rapture is in ecstasy. The boundaries of the representational are left through ecstasy, one feels a divine presence. Ecstasy can arise in meditation, through singing spiritual songs, especially in community with others, through shamanic rituals, through dancing, drumming, etc.

Today ecstasy is also used in other, non-religious contexts: Ecstasy then describes every strong feeling of elation and intense joy. So there is not only religious ecstasy. There is also the feverish ecstasy, the wild ecstasy. You can get into ecstasy and ecstatic someone.

Many adolescents experience ecstasy while being intoxicated with drugs, dancing wildly or at music concerts. Ultimately, every ecstasy that is associated with such a high feeling that a person can overcome the limits of his ego, that this awareness beyond the individual ego is something blissful. Through the experience of ecstasy, people can sense that the goal of life can be to live this unity over the long term. Great saints of all religions and yoga masters say from their experience that this is possible - and set an example.

Ecstasy - a virtue. What is ecstasy? How is this word used? Why is ecstasy an important personality trait, maybe even a virtue? What other personality traits are associated with ecstasy? Would it be desirable to cultivate this quality, let it grow stronger? This Yoga Wiki article also aims to give you food for thought.

Ecstasy as an important state of consciousness

Ecstasy definition

Here is a definition of ecstasy. Ecstasy means to be beside oneself, Ek means something with "except", and stasis has something to do with "being". Ecstasy is a state of enthusiasm, ecstasy is a state of intoxicating trance and also associated with loss of control through the mind. Ecstasis is a word that came from church Latin, ecstasis, and that in turn comes from the Greek, ecstasis.

Ecstasy can also be defined in one sentence: Ecstasy is a state of intoxicating trance, combined with enthusiasm and loss through reason.

In Wikipedia from 2020 you can find a different definition for ecstasy: Ecstasy is a collective term for particularly intense psychological exceptional states that resemble a trance or are unleashed by a trance. They are experienced by those who experience them as dramatic changes in the state of consciousness.

Ecstasy as a high state

And ecstasy was originally used for religious highs. In Christian mysticism, when the mystics were wholly with God, they were in a state of ecstasy. They no longer consciously controlled the mind, they were full of joy and God experience and light, space, etc.

Eventually the term "ecstasy" was used for any great joy. Well, nowadays people say: "He's ecstatic because he passed an exam or got his job or found a new apartment." That should simply mean great joy, something like euphoria.

But the term "ecstasy" can also be used further in the spiritually mystical realm. People who do spiritual practices sometimes come into a state that is beyond the ego and beyond the mind. It is a state where one suddenly loses body awareness as far as possible, where one has the loss of the ego, where one no longer consciously controls, where one feels secure in a higher reality and then all kinds of things can arise.

In our western culture we are a bit afraid of it. I know what I'm talking about, I live in a yoga ashram and there it happens that people keep having ecstatic experiences. Be it that you practice intensive pranayama, more often with a lot of mantra singing or with other special spiritual practices and then it can happen that you suddenly lose normal consciousness, that tears of joy come out of you, sometimes you become physically unresponsive, etc.

The states typically last twenty minutes or less, and after that they are full of energy and joy unless they are worried and others are worried. You can say that in today's western, especially Central European, culture, there is no great tolerance for ecstasy, we have no room for ecstasy.

Perhaps that is also why people tend to be very prone to drugs, alcohol and ultimately enthusiasm at football games, where you can suddenly have intense experiences. If you have ecstatic experiences without alcohol or drugs and without being in a football stadium, it is considered abnormal and people are afraid of it.

But today we know that the capacity for ecstasy is a typically human one. Younger people have this more often than older people, younger people even look for ecstasy, they try to do things that bring them into ecstasy, be it about dancing, about alcohol, drugs or other extraordinary experiences and these experiences are also important and helpful , it is good to get into ecstasy.

You can still think about it there yourself and maybe when you are in a spiritual community or in a great spiritual experience and you see people who may twitch a little or who suddenly turn their heads or make wild movements somewhere, have not equal fear for their health, rejoice with them, they are experiencing great things.

And when someone comes out of such an ecstasy experience, then encourage him and give him the feeling of trust, because some people do not even know how to deal with it. And if you meet others who are so scared when they see others there, tell them that it is a typical human ability and that it typically lasts up to twenty minutes and then everything is back to normal.

But you don't need to be afraid, it doesn't happen that often today, ecstasy would happen more often if many people fall into it, then it becomes like a group ecstasy, a group experience and that doesn't happen so often nowadays, especially in Central Europe .

In Africa, in the tribal cultures or with the Born Again Christians in America, Africa or South America, something like this is also more common there. Perhaps one more note, the deepest experience in yoga is samadhi, sometimes referred to as enstasis. In particular there was a mythologist and religious scholar by the name of Mircea Eliade, also called Mirca Eliade, and he spoke of enstasis as the goal of yoga, that is, going deep within, the absolute centering.

And in the absolute centering one feels completely with oneself and completely with a higher reality. Ecstasy means being outside of yourself, enstasy means being very deep within yourself. Ultimately, however, the full ecstasy with full awareness and the deepest enstasis with full awareness, both lead beyond mind and ego and lead to the same experience of the divine.


Ecstasy is another (incorrect) spelling for ecstasy. Ecstasy or ecstasy comes from the ancient Greek ἔκστασις ékstasis, "getting out of yourself, rapture"; or also from ἐξ-ίστασθαι ex-hístasthai “step out of oneself, be beside oneself”). The derivation of the verb ex-hístasthai can give a reason for the alternative spelling Extase.

Ecstasy definition

Exstasis, from the Greek ex-hístasthai means stepping out of oneself, being outside of oneself, which is usually associated with great joy and rapture. Ecstasy is a psychological high state in which the rational control is overridden and a great intensity of the experience occurs. Ecstasy can arise in religious, spiritual and shamanistic contexts, but sometimes also in group settings, when dancing, making music etc.

What is ecstasy?

Ecstasy - antonyms and synonyms

This Yoga Wiki describes over 1000 virtues and personality traits. Here are some explanations of how the quality of ecstasy can be seen in relation to other skills and behaviors, as well as in relation to vice:

Properties similar to ecstasy - synonyms

Properties similar to ecstasy, i.e. synonyms for ecstasy, are e.g. exuberance of emotions, passion, enthusiasm, fervor, fervor, euphoria.

Balancing properties

Any quality, any virtue that is exaggerated becomes a vice, a vice, an unhelpful quality. Exaggerated ecstasy can degenerate into fanaticism, frenzy, obsession, for example. Therefore, ecstasy needs the cultivation of rationality, a sense of reality and clear thinking as the opposite pole.

Opposite of ecstasy - antonyms

There is an opposite to every property. Here are possibilities for opposite of ecstasy, antonyms to ecstasy:

  • Positive opposites of ecstasy, you could also call them the opposite poles: Rationality, sense of reality, clear thinking
  • Negative opposites of ecstasy, i.e. vice, negative characteristics, are e.g. numbness, dispassion, lethargy, [[]]

Ecstasy antonyms at a glance

Antonyms ecstasy, i.e. opposites, are rationality, a sense of reality, clear thinking, numbness, dispassion, lethargy.

Ecstasy in the context of virtue groups, personality factors and temperaments

See also

Properties in the alphabet before ecstasy

Properties in the alphabet according to ecstasy


Web links


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