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Jhanas & The Witness post 2nd path?

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Jhanas & The Witness post 2nd path?
Answer
10/9/19 11:13 AM
Hi everyone, 

I recently got a path, almost certainly 2nd. I made a strong resolution to master the previous path and complete the next in the fastest time possible. I spent a grand total of 2.5 days in review and am now floundering a bit 3C’s/A&P and playing with some new capabilities in jhana. 

There are 2 things Im really a bit lost with that I hope some here might have personal experience with and be able to offer a pionter or two emoticon

1) Samathat vs Vipassana

For the first 2/3 days after path my ability to go into samatha jhanas was unbefreakinlievable! It faded though, and now I struggle to get my extremely vipassana oriented body-mind to go down that path. I’m getting a bit better at it but basically my body vibrates all day long and when i sit, it immediately pays attention to those vibrations despite my wish for it to be otherwise. This leads to decent vipassana jhana but it’s not the same. 

Curently I’m able to (sometimes) lock in 1st jhana to the breath, then lock on to this kind of undercurrent in the whole body/space fluxing vibrational experience that feels less vibratory and more smooth. This will take me to 2nd where I’m then able to switch again to something in the head that I will describe below. 

Locked onto the head-thing i can ride it all the way to what feels very much like my vipassana style 4th / EQ but much, much deeper and clearly not the same thing at all. From there, i think I am beginning to get boundless space, but that needs more playing with emoticon

So, is there anything else I could try to ignore the nanas and lock in the samathat jahanas? (i’ve tried a candle, but I can’t see an after image even after 5mins - I’m nearly blind, so this does not come as any great surprise. 


2. The head-thing…

I’ve noticed that If i ask “who is experiencing this?” there is a sensation below my eyes, just behind the bridge of the nose and inside my head that i can observe. I’m familiar with the concept of “the witness”, but is this it? It feels like I’m watching the watching (wa bit) but also it feels very calm and relaxed when I walk. And if i can manage to take it as object in jhana, then i can soar up to my current bleeding edge with relative ease. 

It **seems** significant, but seriously, the deeper I get into this stuff the more obvious it becomes that I don’t know a damn thing haha!

Thanks all, 

RE: Jhanas & The Witness post 2nd path?
Answer
10/15/19 12:47 PM as a reply to Bagpuss The Gnome.
Hi, regarding the Witness, Loch Kelly gives a large set of pointers ("Glimpses") in his book "Shift into Freedom", that makes sense once you can have some experience in staying in that mode, shifting from Local Awareness (as you describe) to Space A., Panoramic A., Simultaneous balanced inner and  outer A. etc. 

If you search here, you'll find pointers given years ago by Kenneth Folk & Nikolai and recently Kim Katami.  

I'm actually experimenting in seeing from within, watching at the crown or the floor, and then try to 'orbit' the head, like trying to see 360º.



 

RE: Jhanas & The Witness post 2nd path?
Answer
10/16/19 7:07 AM as a reply to Bagpuss The Gnome.
1.  Try asking your mind, like a butler, for jhana.  "1st jhana, please", etc

2. Conventionally speaking, there will always an orientation in space within a body, due to the sense organs.  In that regard, this phenomenon will not disappear.  However, the sense of any coagulation of consciousness specifically within the head will go away, such that it feels as if consciousness is in & through everything equally all the time.  You may try imagining that you are "spacing out" & allowing this ball of attention to bloom & open like a flower.

Edit: may be better to substitute the phrase 'conscious experience' or 'knowing' or something else.  Point is that consciousness is not reified as some independent, impossibly-existing, permanent unifying force.  It's dependently arising, just like space.