Maum meditation is a Korean meditation technique that was founded in 1996 by Korean Woo Myung in South Korea. The word Maum means “Memory” (ma-eum). It is a syncretic religion although the group does not call it such.
The basis of Maum meditation is to get the individual to overcome “false mind” by imagining themselves dying or falling down a black hole. It is a form of subtraction meditation.
Of all the different meditation techniques we’ve covered on THE DAILY MEDITATION, Maum is one of the most controversial. [READ: 31 Top Meditation Techniques]
The procedure is based on the idea that most people live in a false world and not in reality itself. They are trapped in a “false mind”.
Those who practise Maum meditation believe that it helps them to move out of the false world and into the real one. This idea is also found in Huna Healing Techniques.
The idea of fake and real worlds is partly why Maum has come under so much attack over recent times, as I’ll discuss in just a sec.
Maum is one of the lesser-known techniques because it has been so heavily criticised ever since it was created.
- Created by Wo MyYung in 1996
- A Korean meditation
- Subtraction technique (removes things from the mind)
- Uses the idea of “False Mind”
- Some research shows it is good for self-esteem
- In its own marketing it is said to be good for stress, anxiety, and depression
- Possibly a cult
Lot’s of people believe maum meditation is a cult
Maum Meditation is the most widely known form of Korean meditation and has organisations around the world. But is Maum a cult?
I truly believe in creating a safe space for my readers. So let me say up front that there are lots of risks of Maum and they are far worse than the common side effects of meditating.
Firstly, many people have stated that Maum is a cult and is dangerous.
Personally, I take that with a big pinch of salt. Because fifty years ago, people thought that Buddhist meditation was dangerous, a cult, evil, going to kill you.
In the West, we very quickly label things cults and then decades later change our minds.
Back in the 50s if you told someone that you practised meditation, they would presume that you were cutting the heads off chickens and putting curses on everyone and their mum. I exaggerate, of course, but it is well documented that people used to consider meditation “voodoo-hoodooo”.
Nevertheless, lots of people say Maum is a cult.
There’s actually a fascinating discussion on this on Quora.
Quora user Mack More says:
“All cults share the same set of control tactics because there is only one method of non-chemical mind control that works. So, if you learn that set, you are protecting yourself, not only against one cult but all cults.
It has to do with psychological and social pressure.
All of the pressures are applied simultaneously, such that the recruit is overwhelmed, and in response to that overwhelm, the cult hopes the recruit will “voluntarily” give up their critical thinking faculties and subordinate their free will to the will of the group.” CONTINUE READING.
Doesn’t sound good. And there are more reasons to think it could be cultist:
- You have to pay to learn
- The final stage requires that you pay several thousand dollars to complete your training
- Each meditation lasts 3 hours (this is much longer than the ideal meditation time recommended by most researchers)
- There is pressure put on individuals to sign up
- Zero information is given about the technique before individuals sign up.
- Most people who have discussed their experience online are extremely negative about it
- It’s marketed in an overly aggressive way, with videos showing you hundreds of people smiling
- It is a little bit too much like Scientology!
Is it legit?
Whether Maum is a cult or not is not for me to judge. If you want a website that judges you’re on the wrong one. THE DAILY MEDITATION believes in an open mind. Whether or not Maum is a genuine and helpful technique is not under our authority to argue.
It is worth noting, however, there that is a study published on the National Institute of Health that says that Maum is good for self esteem. The study was conducted by the Korean University and Kunsan National University.
Let me show you how to do it, and then you can decide for yourself.
How To Do Maum Meditation Technique
The best way to learn Maum meditation technique is through Woo Myung’s books.
I am presuming you have read the warning about this potentially being a cult, so I will share what I know of this technique for educational purposes only.
As with all techniques on this website, we strongly advise you to read the instructions slowly and carefully, so you fully understand the procedure first. We also recommend contacting a healthcare professional before beginning and perhaps hiring a meditation teacher.
Maum meditation technique is a form of subtraction meditation that uses eight stages. The first seven stages prepare the practitioner to leave the false world and enter the real world. When you’re first learning how to do maum meditation read these instructions slowly and go easy.
- The first stage of Maum meditation aims to create oneness between the practitioner and the universe. To do this stage, sit comfortably on a meditation cushion or yoga mat. Now visualise the death of your physical body and imagine your soul floating off into space.
- The second stage gets the practitioner to recognise “False Mind.” This stage moves you past feelings, emotions and thoughts. To do this, imagine that you are in space and there is a black hole next to you. Now visualise yourself throwing your emotions and thoughts into this black hole. Now throw your spiritual self into the black hole.
- This stage destroys your emotions and memories. To do it, imagine that you are putting everything that defines you (your possessions and such) onto a conveyor belt. Visualise your possessions moving along the conveyor belt into a fire. They are destroyed.
- The fourth stage of Maum meditation requires that you do a simple chore like cleaning the dishes. Associate this task with the destruction of your physical form.
- 5, 6 and 7: Stages five six and seven are repeats of stage 4 with different chores. With each chore you do, imagine your physical form being destroyed increasingly.
So you’ve learnt how to do Maum meditation technique, the controversial subtraction meditation from Korea. But there’s an important question to ask: Is Maum a cult?
What do you think?
Share your thoughts in a comment.