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Dharma Diagnostic Clinic, aka "What was that?"

Reflections and suggestions appreciated

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Thank you everyone for suggestions and reflections... It has been valuable and I am thus letting this thread die to focus on what has been learned... Thank you...

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/1/19 7:30 AM as a reply to Christian R H.
Hi there, friend! I don’t know how to help you, but I just wanted to say that I recognize the experience of having liberated energies get stuck and stagnate and how painful that is. Also, I have had experiences of something cracking open in the head both with loud bangs, as from explosions (like in ”exploding head syndrome”), and more subtle sounds. I don’t have your long experience with teachers and practices, though. My take on it right now, which may very well be wrong, is that trying to make it stabilize is what creates the resistance that causes pain and tension. There is nothing but flow, and once one has discovered that, there is no going back. The energies are not ours to keep. They need to keep going through the field that we think of as ourselves. This is what keeps me pain free right now, but it might change, so don’t take my word for it. If it resonates with you, use it, and if not, then listen to someone who is more experienced than me instead. Best wishes!

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/3/19 9:28 AM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Hi Linda emoticon Yes, huge amounts of energy+ tightness is not the most fun cocktail! 

Thank you for your reply...

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/1/19 3:22 PM as a reply to Christian R H.
I’m glad I could help. emoticon

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/1/19 10:30 PM as a reply to Christian R H.
Christian R H:
Dear Dharma brothers and sisters,


I would love some reflections and suggestions on my process. I am new to the dharmaoverground and have very little understanding of Buddhist terminology and the Buddhist map's of awakening or other maps for that sake, so please bear with me.


About a decade ago I had a big spontaneous opening that last for some days, followed by a spontaneous kundalini awakening. Although I dabbled a bit with meditation practice at the time I wasn't actively pursuing awakening or anything like that at the time. It all happened without the use of drugs etc.

Since then I was assisted by an Indian shaktipat teacher for some years. Here I meditated several hours a day and would mostly focus on dissolving in energy/shakti/conscious light. There were many various inner experiences, and many smaller awakenings as well as some irreversible and profound changes within subjective experiencing. The final and biggest awakening with that teacher being "entering" awareness of awareness in a very final way, where all attention, sensations, and all of consciousness dissapeared. "I" had no experience of what had happened as this happened, as it was a total absence of any experiencing. It was only after concsiousness/presence/existence "miracoulously" appeared again that there was even an awareness of the fact that there had bin a massive gap of absence of the normal sense of existence. So whatever happened then, is not really known with the normal facculties, other than the fact that there was a total absence. A few weeks later while mediatiing something "cracked" and opened within/behind the third eye making a very loud noise internally. A few days later something that had always been theredissapeared, a very deep subtle identity, and it took weeks and months to even realize what had happened. 

The best way I could describe this realization is that it was/is one of total absence or void. After this, a freedom beyond freedom came, where it was clear that even when the body-mind suffered, there is a peace beyond peace. Also, it became clear that there is nowhere else to go in terms of "beyondness". That there is nothing "beyond" to be realized, as the idea of something beyond is an illusion itself, and that there is no beyond. This realization or non-realization of absence, has off course never left, as there is nothing to leave or come. Since this, the quality of presence is also experienced as non-existence. Presence or I-Am doesn't feel solid or like having real existence in and of itself. 

Athough this brought incredible and irrevocable peace that is unaffected by everything, I still felt that it was just the beginning. My body-mind still suffered and my ego was in many ways fully intact, the only thing that had changed was just a total freedom from being the ego-mind. It felt like freedom from experience, but no freedom within/as experience.

So I continued on and came under the tutelage of another teacher from America who remails relatively obscure. This teacher had incredible focus on "God" and purification of the body-emotions as a surrender to the Divine. At this point I gave up all my normal meditation practices, as I could see how much aversion I had to my body-emotions and life, and that I was using the meditation to try to get further and further away from all of these.

This teacher also embodied incredible amounts of kundalini within their physical system/body/flesh, and being around this transmission on a consistent basis completely changed the experience of kundalini I had had with my first Indian teacher. It was as if it moved from dealing primarily with my subtle bodies and only secondorarily with my physical body, to the opposite. Everything became extremely physical and the kundlini started bringing up every single emotion, trauma and feeling into my awareness.

I was under the tutelage of this particular teacher for about 5 years. I had to learn a different way of being that was grounded in my body in order to be able to "love" and stay with the process of digesting all of the material that was coming up. It was as if moving from simple being aware and free (but with subtle separation), to learning to BE as Love, or as the light of the heart while all the feelings were coming up and moving etc. This time also freed very large amounts of energy within my physical system. I became used to "mystical" or various experiences of divinity, presence, experinging the one luminious Self within everything and everyone and so forth during this period. Mystical experiences became so normal that I just went on with my life while they were happening and didn't view them as mystical as such, other than when something new and sometimes shocking or deeper ego-death evoking came up. This was also the time when consciosuness started "descending". Which  feels like consciosuness is descending down into the flesh layer by layer and bringing up anything that is ego/pain/ignorance to process. Being with this teacher felt much more about realizing "I AM" or the true light of consciousness, both beyond the body but also within and withiout separation from the body. Which is probably why the process was/is so physical. 

Since being with that teacher, I go through incredible extremes of experiencing. It is like the body-heart-mind can open incredible amounts, and when i rest as this, there is a causeless luminious joy and energy. Sometimes this is also seen to be empty and clear simultaneously. 

The challenges is that with all of this energy constantly brings deeper unconcsiouss material up for purifcation. And it is not always that I am able to maintain openness, which then leads to an extreme closing (probably experinced as a contrast to the states of incredible openness).

These extreme closings are very hard on the body, as all the liberated energy gets stuck within the system until I start releasing it and opening it up again. Often through physical movement and or/ bring present and loving awareness to the places and emotions that need it. 

During the process of these extremes, I have definitely learned a great deal of equanimity (there is a Buddhist term emoticon ) as I have truly gone through some incredible horrendous psycho-physical states many times. Even sometimes fearing physical death and being forced to simply accept that this might be the case and give up the attachment to the body. 

I do however feel that there is something missing, something that would perhaps help balance out the incredible amounts of liberated energy and purification happening constantly.  My own inkling is that it has to do with more realization of emptiness and learning to let things spontaneously self-liberate as opposed to having to process through everything bit by bit.

I am open to doing vipassana or samatha etc practices as this might be the missing link. I have never done such practices seriously, although I suppose the merging into conciousness is a kind of samatha. I mean that I haven't done much in the sense of body based watching the breath etc.

"The problem" I face when doing such practices is that I very quickly start merging into different states of bliss, concsiousness, peace etc. Which I don't have a problem with, but it feels like it dissociates me from my body. And then if feels like although there is a total state of peace one place, the "front" or the most physical part hasn't been freed or liberated. 


I am currently in retreat, doing 6-10 hours of practice every day. Mostly doing a lot of asanas, breathing, qi gong, walking, as well as tantric practices to purify more layers. 

What I would really love, is to become more "stable" in/as the middle path and not have to ride through the extremes constantly. To come more into a "normal" and down to earth simple presence, as I feel that I have had enough of the fancy and "amazing" experiences, and I see more and more that they are not it, although parts of me still have attachment to stabilizing in "perfect everpresent bliss" etc. 
Also I would like to do so in a real way that is inclusive of all levels, and doesn't merely leave the body to fend by itself. 



Final note: There have also been some other irrevocable cessations and deaths happening here, but haven't mentioned as it doesn't feel relevant. The subjective experience here is very paradoxical. In one sense there is incredible freedom to go through any state of discomfort, even really horrendous ones, as I have learned this through many extreme shifts between openness and closing. There is less and less attachment to "outer" things, at least when alone, and it is seen that it is all attachment to inner emotions-thoughts etc, that are constantly creating object-relations and duality.

There is an incredible openness to many states of conciosness and many heavenly realms etc, as well as many abilities that have also opened up, and simultaneously there is not freedom from/in the constant barrage of deeper and deeper subconcsious material that comes up.

My thought is that this material has been subconcious for a reason, probably cause my psyche couldn't handle it, so as it comes up, I have to grow stronger as presence/loving kindness/I AM in order to be able to digest it. This is a process however, which has me go through extremes of opening and closing. Which is why my thought was that I need to realize more emptiness etc along with the physical practices I am doing now, so that perhaps things could self-liberate instantly instead of the constant processing.

Also, the reason for intense retreat at the moment is that I find that things are much smoother and more balanced when I am practicing a lot. It helps smooth out the flow and I experience less stuckness when i do so. Where when I wasn't practicing much it would get stuck much more. 


I would appreciate any reflections and especially concrete practices/directions which you intuit is the piece of the puzzle I am missing at the moment. 


Thank you good friends...


aloha christian,

   A fine story; thanks for sharing.

   Dogen said, when you think you have it all, you are missing something; when you think you are missing something, you have it all. 

   Lao tzu said, you have to know when to stop. Practice no practice; let the mud settle. It sounds like you have a restless spirit.

terry




from "he" by franz kafka:


This is the problem: Many years ago I sat one day, in a sad enough mood, on the slopes of the Laurenziberg. I went over the wishes that I wanted to realize in life. I found that the most important or the most delightful was the wish to attain a view of life (and—this was necessarily bound up with it—to convince others of it in writing), in which life, while still retaining its natural full-bodied rise and fall, would simultaneously be recognized no less clearly as a nothing, a dream, a dim hovering. A beautiful wish, perhaps, if I had wished it rightly. Considered as a wish, somewhat as if one were to hammer together a table with painful and methodical technical efficiency, and simultaneously do nothing at all, and not in such a way that people could say: “Hammering a table together is nothing to him," but rather, "Hammering a table is hammering a table together to him, but at the same time it is nothing," whereby certainly the hammering would become still bolder, still surer, still more real and, if you will, still more senseless.

But he could not wish in this fashion, for his wish was not a wish, but only a vindication of nothingness, a justification of non-entity, a touch of animation which he wanted to lend to non-entity, in which at that time he had scarcely taken his first few conscious steps, but which he already felt as his element. It was a sort of farewell that he took from the illusive world of youth; although youth had never directly deceived him, but only caused him to be deceived by the utterances of all the authorities he had around him. So is explained the necessity of his “wish.”

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/2/19 9:31 AM as a reply to Christian R H.
This post was brought to my attention on a group on Facebook, and since I’ve nothing better to do at the moment—Facebook in a nutshell—I thought I’d chip in.

Maybe it’s time you find the guru within. What does that mean? Instead of progressing and processing in terms of external methods and instruction, maybe it’s time you get in contact with the source of these methods and instructions. Your teachers have drawn on their own sensitivities and sanity to help and instruct, but they have always wanted most of all for you to see how they have used their minds and bodies to gain insight into yours and others’ states and how they let wisdom and skillful means well up.

The issues you formulate sounds to me mostly like issues of fidelity. You need more or higher fidelity in dealing with your uniques and particulars. Teachers can indeed miraculously help with this, but there is no match for the guru within.

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/2/19 4:06 PM as a reply to Christian R H.
aloha christian,

   Perhaps the most significant thing about your story is that it is a story. It takes place in time, in the past. Then the question necessarily becomes, what next? More events, more time. Thus more seeking, more teachers. How many times must you see the ocean before you throw yourself in and drown?

   A teacher, in dogen's words, is "the good friend." Sufi's call the "inner guru" "The Friend." This is because the so-called master, guru or teacher tends to be regarded as an authority, which destroys at the outset any chance of liberation. As liberation is non-dual, there is no room for thee and me. To dogen, "all beings" equals "all being."

   The present time includes all time, past and future included. There is only one "spiritual experience" and it is only "experienced" once. There are no spiritual achievements, and spiritual pride is just pride. The real "achievement" is emptiness, which is always right here. The buddha said, I go out and speak to hundreds of people. Each one thinks I am speaking to them alone, but they are wrong. When I am done speaking, I go back to sitting in a circle of tree roots and resume meditating by myself. 

terry



a quote from dogen, the shobogenzo, "uji":


1

An ancient buddha said:

For the time being stand on top of the highest peak. 
For the time being proceed along the bottom of the deepest ocean. 
For the time being three heads and eight arms. 
For the time being an eight- or sixteen-foot body. 
For the time being a staff or whisk. 
For the time being a pillar or lantern. 
For the time being the sons of Zhang and Li. 
For the time being the earth and sky.

"For the time being" here means time itself is being, and all being is time. A golden sixteen-foot body is time; because it is time, there is the radiant illumination of time. Study it as the twelve hours of the present."Three heads and eight arms" is time; because it is time, it is not separate from the twelve hours of the present.

2

Even though you do not measure the hours of the day as long or short, far or near, you still call it twelve hours. Because the signs of time's coming and going are obvious, people do not doubt it. Although they do not doubt it, they do not understand it. Or when sentient beings doubt what they do not understand, their doubt is not firmly fixed. Because of that, their past 
doubts do not necessarily coincide with the present doubt. Yet doubt itself is nothing but time.

3

The way the self arrays itself is the form of the entire world. See each thing in this entire world as a moment of time. 
Things do not hinder one another, just as moments do not hinder one another. The way-seeking mind arises in this moment. A way-seeking moment arises in this mind. It is the same with practice and with attaining the way. Thus the self setting itself out in array sees itself. This is the understanding that the self is time.

4

Know that in this way there are myriads of forms and hundreds of grasses throughout the entire earth, and yet each grass and each form itself is the entire earth. The study of this is the beginning of practice. When you are at this place, there is just one grass, there is just one form; there is understanding of form and no-understanding of form; there is understanding of grass and no-understanding of grass. Since there is nothing but just this moment, the time-being is all the time there is. Grass-being, form-being are both time. Each moment is all being, is the entire world. Reflect now whether any being or any world is left out of the present moment.

5

Yet an ordinary person who does not understand buddha-dharma may hear the words the time-being this way:

For a while I was three heads and eight arms. For a while I was an eight- or sixteen-foot body. This is like having crossed over rivers and climbed mountains. Even though the mountains and rivers still exist, I have already passed them and now reside in the jeweled palace and vermilion tower. Those mountains and rivers are as distant from me as heaven is from earth.

It is not that simple. At the time the mountains were climbed and the rivers crossed, you were present. Time is not separate from you, and as you are present, time does not go away. As time is not marked by coming and going, the moment you climbed the mountains is the time-being right now. If time keeps coming and going, you are the time-being right now. This is the meaning of the time-being. Does this time-being not swallow up the moment when you climbed the mountains and the moment when you resided in the jeweled palace and vermilion tower? Does it not spit them out?

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/3/19 9:24 AM as a reply to terry.
Thank you Terry... 

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/3/19 8:58 AM as a reply to Stian Gudmundsen Høiland.
Thank you Stian... Will contemplate and enquire...

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/3/19 1:44 PM as a reply to Christian R H.
Hello Christian,

If you look into Buddhist practice. Maybe Jhana could be a way to control the samadhis/energies more. Especially the forth has such an equanimous, even and still quality to it. I miss it myself, especially the last weeks with edgy energy manifesting, unfortunately, I don't have access to it off retreat. Of course, there is lots of debate what's considered jhana. You have to find a teacher and tradition that resonates with you. But you can find retreat's easily accessible.

In another case the tradition that works with energy in Buddhism is Vajrayana. Those guys are elusive, however. Had Tsoknyi Rinpoche recommended to me for "pointing out the nature of mind instruction" some years ago but it seems impossible to find a retreat with him every time I look. As it's a tradition somewhat in secrecy still and that teaches through initiation I find it hard to know who to trust.

By the way sent you a PM with a suggestion also.

All the best

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/5/19 3:34 PM as a reply to Christian R H.
Christian R H:
Thank you Terry... 

aloha christian,

   The question of where to go after one has already experienced the ultimate many times, or has been reborn in this life over and over, is the sort of mobius (s)trip that catches my mind, one of those subtle delusions that continues to reintroduce ego through the back door, so to speak. Or perhaps it is only the agonal breathing of the dying self.

   Anyhows, a couple more quotes that seem appropriate, if you can bear more reflections and suggestions.

terry



from sonnets to orpheus, rilke, trans mitchell:


III.

A god can do it. But can you tell me how
a man can enter through the lyre’s strings?
Our mind is split. And at the shadowed crossing
of heart-roads, there is no temple for Apollo.
Song, as you have taught it, is not desire,
not wooing any grace that can be achieved;
song is reality. Simple, for a god.
But when can we be real? When does he pour
the earth, the stars, into us? Young man,
it is not your loving, even if your mouth
was forced wide open by your own voice—learn
to forget that passionate music. It will end.
True singing is a different breath, about
nothing. A gust inside the god. A wind.




and from dogen, Shōbōgenzō: On The Spiritual Question as It Manifests Before Your Very Eyes:


When someone has spiritually awakened, he resembles the moon’s ‘residing’ in water: the moon does not get wet nor is the water shattered. Although the moon is a great, broad light, it lodges in the tiniest bit of water. The moon at its fullest, as well as the whole of the heavens, lodges within the dewdrop poised on a blade of grass, just as it lodges in any single bit of water. Spiritual awakening does not tear a person asunder; thus, it is like the moon’s not making a dent in the water. A person no more impedes his spiritual awakening than a dewdrop impedes the moon in the heavens. The deeper the reflection, the higher the light: how long the period of your spiritual awakening will last depends on how large your drop of water is and how full your moon is seen to be.

When the Truth has not yet completely filled someone’s body and mind, he is apt to think that his knowledge of the Dharma is already sufficient. When the Truth sufficiently fills his body and mind, he feels sure that some aspect is still lacking. By way of analogy, when you go out in a boat to the middle of the ocean, beyond the sight of any land or mountain, and look around you, all you see is the vast encircling water. Or, as another might put it, there is nothing to be seen. Be that as it may, this great Ocean is not a vast circle, and how we perceive It does not depend on what direction we look in. It is simply that we cannot exhaust what the rest of this Ocean’s nature is, though some have likened it to a dragon’s splendid palace or its jeweled necklace. Although this Ocean extends as far as our eye can see, after a while It will seem to be simply ‘a vast encircling’—indeed, even the whole universe will seem to be just the same.

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/6/19 7:55 AM as a reply to terry.
Dogen is the best.

RE: Reflections and suggestions appreciated
Answer
4/8/19 9:38 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
Dogen is the best.


true dat


I spend a lot of time on this site  http://www.thezensite.com/MainPages/Dogen_teachings.html

and there are lots of other goodies there as well...

t