Stream entry with no intensive retreats... Yeah right!

Robert Scott Johnson, modified 10 Years ago.

Stream entry with no intensive retreats... Yeah right!

Posts: 17 Join Date: 1/25/11 Recent Posts
Hey DhO, I've got some stuff for everyone to wrap their heads around here. First a quick overview of my practice so far.

Ive only been serious about meditation and dharma and such for about 7 or 8 months now but feel that some real progress has taken place, when I got into this at first it was sort of a way to solidify my sobriety, I'm an alchoholic three years sober. I would do simple stuff like forgiveness meditation ( great stuff for me considering my alchoholic past) , reflections in death, Metta, cultivating wholesome qualities ( not sure what that's called), concentration states, and sometimes just feeling the mind body process and developing compassion for it. I would even do this weird thing where I would first get into a deep state then contemplate and feel the 5 aggregates then contemplate and realize the four noble truths then contemplate and drill into my mind the eightfold path sort of like a vow from a deep place in my heart and mind ( I've never read or heard about doing that but it seemed to have done something worthwhile) it was a very free form approach to meditation, and to this day the whole focus of all of this was to better this lump of mind and body for the benefit of all beings, I take the dedication of merit very seriously!
For the first few months of my practice I had no knowledge of the maps or the difference between concentration and insight practice. What I thought I was doing was more like bit by bit developing more and more good qualities rather than embarking on a spiritual journey, another thing is that an aspect of investigation was usually present, not always intentional investigation into the three characteristics but the three characteristics would certainly show themselves. This is one reason that I'm thinking that I started the progress of insight before I even realized what I was doing.
Soon enough I got my hands on MCTB this is when stuff started to get kinda weird. As I was reading parts about the dark night and all the unpleasant sides of practice I started actually getting dark night symptoms, of coarse I was still meditating alot and had adopted lots of Daniels specific instructions but I was in disbelief that I was actually in the dark night just because of the fact that I was reading about it. I thought that what I had done was just freaked myself out, kind of like a kid watching a horror film, so I just suppressed the dark night and was even a little pissed at Daniel for writing this book and getting my mind all whacko, (sorry Daniel) anyway around this time I decided to hold off on hardcore practice til i was in a more stable frame of mind, after all if I was this freaked out just reading about this stuff I could only imagine what would happen if I actually experienced it! Now I'm thinking that I was legitimately in the dark night while I was reading Daniels fantastic book. Something I could not have believed while reading it cause I'm well aware of the minds ability to play tricks on you.
(this will be a 2 part post)

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