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Actualism and Vipassana

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Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/11/10 5:51 PM
Does it make sense to do Vipassana with a primary focus on the affective feelings in order to see through them and be free of them? Or is there a fundamental incompatibility between what Vipassana does and what Actualism requires?

Paul

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/11/10 6:12 PM as a reply to Paul Duplessis.
I am going to give my very simple take on this somewhat complex topic:

The assumptions and emphases of Vipassana and AF are different, thought there are some methodological similarities, both involving paying attention to what is happening, both wanting to reduce suffering as a goal.

A simple take on some of the differences are these:

Vipassana uses the individual sensations that make up our immediate sensate experience as a focus for noticing the Three Characteristics, impermanence, suffering and no-self, and tries to see these aspects of experience for all sensations, starting with primary objects, and gradually expanding out to include the entire field of experience as one moves through the stages of insight. It tends to regard emotions as just more sensations to be investigated at that level of no particular importance beyond the fact that they demonstrate the Three Characteristics. It gradually eliminates the sense that any sensation is a subject or self and provides the emotional and perceptual benefits that come with that.

AF has a very different focus and feel, using the concept of happiness now, direct sensate sensuous appreciation, cultivating felicitous feelings as a precursor to being affect-free, and remembering/cultivating the PCE as the basis of reconditioning the mind to appreciate and perceive reality in something like that basic way (noting that AF and the PCE are different but share some related elements), noticing where happiness and naivete were lost and remembering how to get back there by appreciating the richness of now, with the specific message being that "I am my feelings, and my feelings are me," meaning that eliminating that particular meaning of the word "me" by seeing them in the light of apperception and illusion, and with that "me" gone, feeling itself will then be gone.

As you can hopefully appreciate, these are very different in many ways.

As to which to do, it would depend on what makes sense to you at this moment and which you resonate with. There are arguments for doing either first and there is no clear way at this point to determine which will be optimal for you, so my advice would be to simply make a decision about which you wish to pursue and take that method on its own terms, following the methods of that particular approach on their own terms.

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/11/10 6:50 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Thank you very much, Daniel.

I will stay with Vipassana first. I like how you say " gradually eliminates the sense that any sensation is a subject or self and provides the emotional and perceptual benefits that come with that." This makes sense and I think I can do it better that way. Actualism seems too psychological and 'I' am too muddled to work that way. I think it will be easier when more clarity is available.

Paul

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/12/10 11:11 AM as a reply to Paul Duplessis.
Perhaps some qualities gained in Vipassana help finishing AF. Like for instance : Learning to tune your mind in a certain way, crossing a border, overcoming fears etc.. This is an interesting topic, I just thought if it would be helpful to advise a fellow human beeing who would like to head to AF to practice Vipassana... Could also be helpful to induce a PCE...Hard to say can only speak from my experience..

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/12/10 5:49 PM as a reply to Christian Ballhaus.
Thanks Christian, that's what I thought too. It may be possible for some people to do Actualism without prior training in concentration and discernment, but I don't think I can. Too much wishful thinking, not enough technique.

Paul

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/12/10 5:54 PM as a reply to Paul Duplessis.
Paul Duplessis:
Too much wishful thinking, not enough technique.

Paul


I feel very much this way too. I keep trying to do Actualism on my off the cushion time and Concentration/Vipassana on my cushion time, the more I meditate the more it seems to help me focus on HAIETMOBA. I think I need some mental focus ability and clarity to help with the Actualism. So for now I am doing both. Do some of you folks who have done both feel it's better to just focus on one, then the other?
Thanks!
Kerstin

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/14/10 10:04 AM as a reply to Kerstin Upmeyer.
Kerstin Upmeyer:
Paul Duplessis:
Too much wishful thinking, not enough technique.

Paul


I feel very much this way too. I keep trying to do Actualism on my off the cushion time and Concentration/Vipassana on my cushion time, the more I meditate the more it seems to help me focus on HAIETMOBA. I think I need some mental focus ability and clarity to help with the Actualism. So for now I am doing both. Do some of you folks who have done both feel it's better to just focus on one, then the other?
Thanks!
Kerstin



We just have about 10 people who attained an Actual Freedom, so we dont know what really would be the smartest or fastest way to get there. Fact is, most of the people were involved in some kind of Meditation practice before . I mean this question leads smoothly to the next big question, Is AF some kind of next step to enlightenment ?!? But how to find out !?!
For practice I first hardcore meditated till the cows come home, after enlightenment and realizing that AF was the thing im heading to I stopped meditation completely.If youre meditating after stream entry youre cycles start to get more dominant which is counterproductive for inducing a PCE. On the other hand "Soft" Meditation helped me to induce my first PCE. Hope that helps ;-)

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/17/10 10:08 PM as a reply to Paul Duplessis.
Paul Duplessis:
Does it make sense to do Vipassana

is there a fundamental incompatibility between what Vipassana does and what Actualism requires?

Paul




Insight practice uses bare attention and clear comprehension via direct and penetrative realization of the 3 characteristics of existence, i.e. Impermanence, Suffering and No Self. The lens of the 3 characteristics provides conformity to a religious ideal (Buddhism) with a goal of perfect detachment (disembed from experience).

Bare attention leads to reshaping of the mind. The mind observed through a higher resolution (concentration) allows for the strafication of the experience into stable levels of jhana. This is still a self experience though

By observing change and pausing before action (noting) suffering is decreased (dispassion) this is achieved via the decreasing negative qualities and enhancing positive qualities.

My experience with this practice lead me to increased awareness of suffering and with the enhanced positive qualities it just lead to a greater change when the negative ones did arise although these did not "stick" they still occurred so suffering was not eliminated. Due to detachment, negative ones had a decreased impact due to their decrease in persistence (length of time).

This experience provides detachment and happiness by temporarily stepping aside or working towards stepping out of this world of suffering which is often represented as "In this world but not of it". To clearly see all things of the inner and outer world is still a self experience.

Clear comprehension is an off the pillow practice observing action during of all our activities, bodily, verbal and mental - both internal and external. Again this is observing conformity through a religious ideal (Buddhism) by applying Right knowledge i.e. observing action via the 3 Characteristics.

Through observation of daily activities you question the reason of the action and choose the Rght course of action in accordance with Buddhist ideals being aware that there is no permanent self in all activities.

By desembedding from the activity (seen through the lens of the 3 characteristics) this leads to the non dual experience or the no self experience also identified as True Self or a centre-less interior life an experience with a quality that is often referred to as love, suchness, timeless. The self reforms itself as a True Self seen as the swirl of passion around the empty centre (doughnut).

I spent approx 3 years of 2 hrs a day min (plus as much time off the cushion as I could attend) to with reshaping the mind with insight, koan, gtummo and Taoist practices. I clung to the Non Dual state and went forth into the market place to road test these achievements. Thankfully Tarin and Trent persisted in speaking out that there was more work to be done. I rationalised that what they spoke of was the Non dual state and AF and the Non Dual state was conceptually the same.

Through the meditative practices (insight and koan) I realised that you can apply yourself and achieve the outcomes as describe in the visshumagga and the practices no matter how basic they appeared delivered the goods if followed. This knowledge I applied to HAIETMOBA without deviating from the goal and saved a lot of time which would have been spent in intellectual masturbation wondering if there is a better way as surely it can’t be this easy there must be a secret sauce to add.


Techniques used include a light focus on your biological centre and apply bare attention and reflection or contemplation and analysis (provides reflective contemplation) are similar to insight practice without the 3 Characteristic lens. Further clear comprehension of actions (without the 3 Characteristics lens) is also used for it is the will that fuels the self.

You need to investigate the self in action. How an unconscious reflex action becomes consciousness. How interior reality is the actual world as a self experience.

I believe you could land AF quicker via the straight HAIETMOBA then spending the time to navigate via the 4 path Buddhist method then using the HAIETMOBA. This has taken me approx 3.5 yrs of dedicated study without missing a day. This of cause allows you to explore the mind, the jhanas and an investigation into psychic experiences so there is a pay off but you need to discards these states to move on if total expiration of the self is the end goal.

Perhaps another path is using the Awareness watching Awareness method or Surrendering to achieve the non dual state then using HAIETMOBA technique to see the empty centre is just another self experience is another way forward.

cheers
Jeff

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/23/10 4:26 PM as a reply to Christian Ballhaus.
Christian Ballhaus:



We just have about 10 people who attained an Actual Freedom, so we dont know what really would be the smartest or fastest way to get there. Fact is, most of the people were involved in some kind of Meditation practice before . I mean this question leads smoothly to the next big question, Is AF some kind of next step to enlightenment ?!? But how to find out !?!
For practice I first hardcore meditated till the cows come home, after enlightenment and realizing that AF was the thing im heading to I stopped meditation completely.If youre meditating after stream entry youre cycles start to get more dominant which is counterproductive for inducing a PCE. On the other hand "Soft" Meditation helped me to induce my first PCE. Hope that helps ;-)


Thanks Christian, yes it does. It seems most folks who have made real progress (though granted, not all) had some serious meditation under their belt. Now Tarin is suggesting trying for a Jhana if you can't get an EE or PCE. I think I'll keep doing AF while going through my day, but really build on my meditation practice to help get my mind in a better state to do more, be it Actualism or higher meditation levels. Think I need to get some basic mental focus down to help everything else. Got to do some 5K runs, then 10k then build up to the marathon, you know? emoticon

Kerstin

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/23/10 5:03 PM as a reply to Kerstin Upmeyer.
Kerstin Upmeyer:
Christian Ballhaus:



We just have about 10 people who attained an Actual Freedom, so we dont know what really would be the smartest or fastest way to get there. Fact is, most of the people were involved in some kind of Meditation practice before . I mean this question leads smoothly to the next big question, Is AF some kind of next step to enlightenment ?!? But how to find out !?!
For practice I first hardcore meditated till the cows come home, after enlightenment and realizing that AF was the thing im heading to I stopped meditation completely.If youre meditating after stream entry youre cycles start to get more dominant which is counterproductive for inducing a PCE. On the other hand "Soft" Meditation helped me to induce my first PCE. Hope that helps ;-)


Thanks Christian, yes it does. It seems most folks who have made real progress (though granted, not all) had some serious meditation under their belt. Now Tarin is suggesting trying for a Jhana if you can't get an EE or PCE. I think I'll keep doing AF while going through my day, but really build on my meditation practice to help get my mind in a better state to do more, be it Actualism or higher meditation levels. Think I need to get some basic mental focus down to help everything else. Got to do some 5K runs, then 10k then build up to the marathon, you know? emoticon

Kerstin


hi kerstin,

just a suggestion - have you thought about posting practice reports here? by that, i don't only mean sit reports (but by all means, if you have a meditation practice, please feel free to share), i mean your experiences throughout the day (as well). you write that you've been practising actualism while going about your day: what have you been doing? how has it been working? what are the benefits? what difficulties, if any, have you faced? how have you addressed those difficulties? how has addressing those difficulties worked? if you are interested in sharing these sorts of details, discussing them will likely give you the best use of the forum, and may serve to catalyse your practice beyond the tacit expectations you possibly currently have. just a suggestion, of course.

tarin

RE: Actualism and Vipassana
Answer
10/29/10 3:57 PM as a reply to tarin greco.
tarin greco:


hi kerstin,

just a suggestion - have you thought about posting practice reports here? by that, i don't only mean sit reports (but by all means, if you have a meditation practice, please feel free to share), i mean your experiences throughout the day (as well). you write that you've been practising actualism while going about your day: what have you been doing? how has it been working? what are the benefits? what difficulties, if any, have you faced? how have you addressed those difficulties? how has addressing those difficulties worked? if you are interested in sharing these sorts of details, discussing them will likely give you the best use of the forum, and may serve to catalyse your practice beyond the tacit expectations you possibly currently have. just a suggestion, of course.

tarin


Thanks Tarin, I have thought about it. I guess I have felt a bit unsure about posting as I was still learning about AF and still feel like such a beginner even in traditional meditation. I've mainly stayed quiet and just read and learned, though Stephanie KD reaching AF as a fellow woman and teacher was something that I felt I could relate to (I know "me" is still very much around!) I have a small group of other beginners that I meet with regarding my meditation practice. But I was a bit unsure about AF at first. (Just had never heard of it, so few people had achieved it, the negative comments about it, felt wary) But I've been basically asking HAIETMOBA during my day whenever I think to do so. I hesitate to even call it actualism practice. It began as a method for me to bring mindfulness off the cushion. But I really like the results. I listened to you and Daniel's talk and felt a real connection with what you guys were saying, but I find (I'm sure your tired of hearing it) Richards writings really difficult to follow. You, Trent, Steph and others here have really inspired me and I feel a lot of connection with what you guys have to say. I feel like all of this is making things better for me, in my everyday life. I am on the edge of really delving into things deeper, but other times, "me" seems to come up with all sorts of rationalizations as to why suffering is an ok price to pay for being in existence. I think I am in the process of letting that go. But I guess posting my practice notes was something I felt I was not committed enough to do till now. You're words (as they often do) are making me rethink that mindset however. Thanks for encouraging me.
K