My practice, not familiar with terminology, would like input

mazefish, modified 4 Years ago at 12/26/18 6:56 AM
Created 4 Years ago at 12/26/18 6:56 AM

My practice, not familiar with terminology, would like input

Post: 1 Join Date: 12/26/18 Recent Posts
First post here. I would like some critique on my practice. I am not familiar with much terminology surrounding meditative practices, and primarily learned "how to meditate" from past psychedelic drug use. 

My practice essentially involves and produces the following:
I actively search for contractions of attention, and seeing the contraction appears to release it. When the contraction is a thought, rather than bothering with the content, seeing it as a contraction of attention releases the tension of it, when it's a contraction on an aspect of the visual field, or a particular touch sensation, it's essentially no different. In between looking for current contractions I open myself up to past contractions, and during formal practice, when I have a good flow going, contractions from earlier that day, or other times suddenly start coming up, and get released. As this practice is done, the sense of doing, the sense of self, time and space starts to become less. Things seem more 2-dimensional in some sense, they are all "right here" rather than at different distances. Life is like a painting, and I'm not in it, I am the painting. 

In addition I do long mula bandha holds because they help me have less nocturnal emissions, I find that semen loss makes my practice less powerful. 

I do two 45 min sessions of the above practice daily. Sometimes I try to maintain it during other activity, which produces great results(joy, flow etc), but when I'm using the computer, I tend to give up on this, and I do that too much.

Any input on what exactly I'm doing here, what it's likely to produce longterm, and what the associated terminology is, is much appreciated.

Daniel M Ingram, modified 4 Years ago at 2/27/19 9:38 PM
Created 4 Years ago at 2/27/19 9:38 PM

RE: My practice, not familiar with terminology, would like input

Posts: 3265 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Dear Mazefish,

Working with "contracted" areas as you find them has resemblances to Goenka-style sankara releasing, as well as just tuning into the suffering characteristic, which some describe as contractions or tensions. That you notice these tensions come and go has aspects of noticing impermanence, which, along with suffering, is one of the Three Characteristics, the last one being no-self, which you also mention as you state that, in noticing tensions come and go, you also have less of a sense of self. So, what you are doing seems to be some variant of vipassana, albeit with your own twist on it. Vipassana leads to the stages of insight, found in a number of sources, but I tend to reference my own descriptions, found in Chapter 30 of MCTB2 found here

Practice in daily life is a good idea.

As to emissions, that is more of a Daoist/Taoist concern, and I will let those who know more about that tradition fill in if they wish. You can find all sorts of discussions around that topic on sites such as the Dao Bums.

Hope that helps.

Great beginner book on meditation: Mindfulness in Plain English, by Bhante Gunaratana.

Best wishes and practice well,