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Head buzzing (intelligence?)
Answer
2/1/19 10:47 AM
I have had this “ability” for about seven years now, and it began after an experience (A&P? Stream entry? Something else?) which contained this same sensation to a stronger degree, as well as a dropping away of fear and its companions. Following this was a stage of my life that saw pretty much everything improve (relationships with family, friends, strangers, myself, embarking on a career path I was very fulfilled by). That experience was rather typical as far as those sorts of things go, and the sensation of clarity and peace which felt as if it burst out from my head through the rest of my body was very strong. I cried from perceiving the perfection in everything.

As for the sensation and the experience I am talking about now, it is a more mild version. (Edit: I realize I didn’t really describe it: It feels like a wave or waves of peace/love/clarity/compassion/non-dual seeing. It is a little tingly but is different from the goosebumps sensation. At its peak it is a bit buzzy. It lasts for a few seconds at most but I can keep it going if I try, in recurrent waves, like the lapping of water on the shore from a boat’s wake.) Here is what I have gathered about it in the time that has passed:

- I have made no conclusion about its source. Whether it is a part of my mind, body, or an external force is up for debate.
- It can occur spontaneously. I made a conscious decision shortly after realizing that this was possible to not desire it or feed it. After the initial experiments on how to call it up (see next point) I decided to leave it alone. It has arisen spontaneously at crucial points in my life, though not generally points which would be thought of as crucial at the time. This has probably happened approximately fifteen times in the seven years, with gaps of years in between. Occurrences seem to relate loosely to being diligent on the spiritual path and the path of my art. Occurrences usually result in me being inspired to pursue meditation or my art.
- It can be called upon. The degree of strength varies with concentration but if I “think” of “love” or “compassion” it will begin to come in gentle waves of what I can only describe as bliss, rapture, or peace. This is incredibly centering and reassuring.
- It responds to yes or no questions. Along with thinking of love, what gets the strongest response is thinking of the question, “Are you of the light?” (I find this to be super cheesy. I came across this from a new age type resource which I am pretty skeptical of, but what works works). This results in a resounding and strong pulse of the sensation. I can also ask other questions, and the responses seem to generally line up with my own intuition but sometimes surprise me. I only ask questions about myself and do not attempt to learn anything external, but my thoughts are this would result in no response, as my questions seem to need to be rooted in love and compassion. The answers and the strength of the answers seem rooted in a very honest intelligence. The lack of response similarly speaks volumes.
- There seems to be a faint awareness of this from other people when it occurs. I don’t speak about it, mention it, and it doesn’t affect my ability to do things negatively. It seems to spread out in a radius in some way. I also think that an ex-partner who practiced had this experience occur to her once from eye contact. She described it differently than I would and had felt it once before.
- The best written description I have found to match the physical sensation was in In This Very Life. I don’t have the book with me now, but it was in the section on rapture.
- Recently I tried to call this up while doing neck stretches and seem to have found that the sensation does not occur if I call it up if my cervical spine is bent. It seems I need to have my head be straight.
- It is similar to the experience many people call ASMR but even ASMR which people can will doesn’t appear to have an intelligence.
- A connection to the HGA has been considered. I’m not sure yet how I feel about this or what I might do to determine if this is the case.
- I don’t think it’s from a tumor. I’m aware of certain types of epilepsy that have some interesting correlations but there’s no solid match. I’m in good health with nothing I would call a physical or mental illness.

My hope is that I can somehow use this as a stepping stone in practice or that there is something to develop here, but I don’t think I’ll ever be anything but agnostic about what exactly it is. Any insight or information is appreciated. Thank you!

edit: I’m not sure if I should have posted this here or in the siddhis section. I’ll let a mod decide.

RE: Head buzzing (intelligence?)
Answer
2/1/19 6:02 AM as a reply to magpie.
Hi Magpie, welcome to the forum.

Based on what you've written here, my own best guess would be that these are A&P experiences as much of what you describe is pretty characteristic of that. You can read more about this here in Daniel's chapter on insight in MCTB2 to see if you agree. As you brought up siddhis, this is the insight stage where they most commonly show up.

This is actually a great place to continue your practice from. What seems to work well for a lot of people at this stage is a vipassana technique called Mahasi noting. Basically, you work your way through subsequent insight stages by noting the 3 characteristics of sensations.

Best wishes for your practice!

RE: Head buzzing (intelligence?)
Answer
2/1/19 10:47 AM as a reply to Andromeda.
Thank you for your response, Andromeda.

I started reading MCTB around the time the event described happened. I finished reading it last year, as I did not want to risk scripting. I was pleasantly surprised to find that without an intellectual knowledge of many aspects of the insight maps, there was a clear correlation in my experiences. This dispelled many of my worries of scripting, but I am still wary of it! I am in the process of reading MCTB2 to see what new connections I might find and if there might be a practice suited for “where I’m at.”

I have practiced noting according to Mahasi Sayadaw’s instructions and found it to be very nice for making contact with the three characteristics, but two things come up: 1) Rather than assisting me in recognizing the three characteristics as fundamental grounds for reality, it more so made me realize that I had already gained these insights and it was only a matter of looking in each moment to find them, so it sort of feels like there is something else I should be doing with my time, and 2) I live in a pretty busy urban area presently and I find that the frequency of sounds (pretty much constant) is more suited to concentration practice. As for point one, I feel like it sounds kind of arrogant, but that is where I’m at. I am presently working my way through Wisdom Wide and Deep and MCTB2 in hopes that I will find some flaw in what I am doing or some variation that seems right. I am also aware that there is really nothing to attain and no progress to be made (while at the same time attainments and progress are part of being human) so am not stressing it.

As for the A&P, I thought it was more of an event than a period. Seven years seems like a long time! There have been many periods of heightened but manageable and interesting strangeness, but this hasn’t been for about six years now, which is part of why this buzzing bliss intelligence thing stands out.

My general approach to all of “this stuff” is pretty freestyle, as that is how I came into it, but I began meditating eight years ago through Bhante Gunaratana’s instructions and find Theravada/Buddhism and pragmatic dharma (aka chaos magick?) to be most useful for maintaining a healthy balance between growth and purpose, taking in and giving back in life. I’m willing to entertain that my freestyle approach created an anomaly never before experienced but I really doubt that. The closest I can come to pinning this down is as an HGA/daemon/entity, but I have always avoided anything related to that and it is not really my preferred answer.

RE: Head buzzing (intelligence?)
Answer
2/1/19 12:35 PM as a reply to magpie.
Hi Magpie, interesting stuff!  The first thing I thought of when reading it is the possible similarity to what is experienced with qigong type practices.  Certainly the idea of energy moving around your body resulting in different perceptual characteristics is highly in line with qigong.

You mentioned using this energy as a stepping stone for practice, or developing it further.  What is your goal with meditation, MCTB style attainment such as stream entry, or more general meditative development?  I know some people who focus strictly on energetic development ala qi gong, and it's certainly a legitimate path, but qi gong practice alone may be unlikely to lead to the kind of meditative insight development discussed on this forum.  I also know other people who use qi gong in conjunction with insight focused meditation, and this seems to be beneficial if you are also interested in energetic type experience.

If you're interested in learning more about qigong, or energetic practices, there is a ton of material out there, and I'm happy to give you recommendations.

RE: Head buzzing (intelligence?)
Answer
2/1/19 1:27 PM as a reply to T DC.
Thank you, T DC. I would certainly be interested in looking at whatever resources you might recommend. I have no direct experience with qigong but the raw energy is similar to my experiences which line up with prana, and I believe prana, qi, chi, etc are generally agreed to be the same.

I have shied away from energetic practices because I seem able to generate more energy than I can handle through the usual means but also because I have generally viewed them as visualizations and a systematic addition to what is, complicating matters more. Along with wanting to keep things as grounded as possible, I also do not want my energy/power/ability to go beyond my ability to handle it skillfully by way of sufficiently developed insight and morality. Simply meditating regularly is enough to increase levels to a degree that makes me uncomfortable at times. Do you think looking into qigong or related energy practices would actually allow me to handle this energy more skillfully? What is your take on my thought that they are complex visualizations, working with an energy that is truly present, but perhaps complicating the matter needlessly?

I don’t have a specific goal as far as attainment. I try not to think in that way often, but the last time I did I came to the conclusion that I had likely achieved stream entry due to the permanent alterations that I have experienced. I suppose my goal is to steadily increase my morality, concentration, and insight, to keep these in balance to avoid any unskillful use or burnouts, and to generally understand as much as I can about this life and reality so that I may most skillfully give back and participate in the world.

RE: Head buzzing (intelligence?)
Answer
2/1/19 3:21 PM as a reply to magpie.
magpie:
 Do you think looking into qigong or related energy practices would actually allow me to handle this energy more skillfully? What is your take on my thought that they are complex visualizations, working with an energy that is truly present, but perhaps complicating the matter needlessly?



Sounds like good goals, I like that you're looking for balance!  When I got into qi gong I was looking for a more balanced alternative to Buddhist meditation, which can become somewhat mind focused, or top heavy.  Certainly you are correct, there are many qi gong exercises with visualization involved, or which are pure visualization, which can have an imbalanced, or ungrounding effect.  I have mainly steered clear of these and focused on more body oriented qi gong movements, ultimately this has led me to tai chi.

There are lots of qi gong teachers out there, each with a slightly different approach.  This is good variety, but it can also be hard to separate the wheat from the chaff so to speak.  Personally I recommend you check out Robert Peng, he has a book called The Master Key.  He's a modern day qi gong master with a pretty amazing story.  I recommend him because I think he is the real deal in terms of realization, which is very rare, and the energetic system he presents in his book is practical and useful in application.  The book has some good balanced / active type qi gong exercises.

Re: your questions, I think it could potentially help you manage it better by giving you a framework of understanding.  Personally, practicing qi gong with a more grounded approach, in Robert Peng's system, helped me tremendously, and I was extremely unbalanced when I started it.  If it doesn't help, and things get weirder, you can always stop.  However I do think he presents a balanced enough approach to qi gong to be pretty safe.  

RE: Head buzzing (intelligence?)
Answer
2/6/19 6:06 AM as a reply to magpie.
Hi Magpie!
What you describe is something that I also recognize. I've had that sort of stuff happening a couple of years now. I've found I framework for it that I enjoy using, although my current take on emptiness would probably also justify me using the term "agnostic" about it. Not sure how to precisely talk about what I think about it, because in many ways it is not something I want to talk about publicly. It is more an inner experience. But I do think it is about energetics, and I also associate it with the presence of passed, accomplished meditation masters. Sometimes these feeling precede a shift in perception that remains. I get that other people can sense this, because I am able to perceive these in others. If you'd like to know more, I could try to expand on this or we could use private messages.

RE: Head buzzing (intelligence?)
Answer
2/6/19 12:33 PM as a reply to Jehanne S Peacock.
I think I understand your hesitancy to talk about this publicly and I’ll PM you (once I figure out how to do it on this board, that is!).

T DC, thank you for the recommendation.