What are these spacequakes?

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Julius Dodd, modified 11 Years ago.

What are these spacequakes?

Posts: 50 Join Date: 8/17/09 Recent Posts
Hello everybody, that's what I experience:
(resembles a little the description of the impermanence & no-self door in MCTB, but I don't know what the unknowing moments of the A&P look like - but as far as I can say, it's only one moment that resists cognition)

Somewhere (usually to the top right) something starts strongly shaking everything I see like an earthquake, ~4 Hz. Within 2 seconds I turn towards the center of these shockwaves and await it, ready for anything, it comes (smiling) towards me and shakes me. I bounce towards it and away from it with very strong sense of acceleration (feels like 4g), but what is moving is not my body, but the whole space I am sitting in. This happens 2-4 times, then my center hits the epicenter of the spacequake. I loose sense of direction & space and find myself in a very very peaceful and clear state where all limbs feel very slim, out of proportion, but beatiful. My body tastes blue.

If you like this image, I am a ship on the ocean, I feel a big wave come, turn towards it. The wave is several times bigger than my ship and makes it overturn, I don't know what happens, and then I am underwater, it's nice and silent and I am sinking to the ground.


Now where and how does it occur?

Most times it happens when I am lying on my back and relaxing. In 2008 it happened first, and repeated every 3-10 weeks, though I did relaxation daily (and still do). I associated it with access concentration then and didn't percieve the shaking. I never knew what hit me. Or from where it hit me. Or how to get into the silent state at will.
In july 2009 I had an extraordinary joyful time (A&P maybe), and this phenomenon occured almost every night before falling asleep for 2-3 weeks, and every few days when relaxing during the day. Don't know if the joy came from jhana, or the jhanas and joy from a part of the cycle. After these weeks, these experiences started getting rare. Along with the good time in july I had first results with kasinas in entering jhana, and at least these are still available.
I really liked the tranquil state before falling asleep, thought that I had learned it more or less now, and labeled the state 1st jhana. The clearer perception of the entrance came with the repetition. A good way (the only one I found out) to trigger the spacequakes was focusing on the vibrating back of my eyelids, then on the space in between me and the eyes or beyond them until the shaking started. The shaking seemed to be a necessary part the state shift.

Now I could not reproduce it for weeks, and the few times something started shaking, I would turn towards it, but dodge it in the last moment. Out of fear. I couldn't throw myself into the epicentre, and so it would fade without myself enjoying the blissful state afterwards. I do not know what has changed since july, the fantastic days I had then are past. Not that the world is not beautiful now, I but I wouldn't mind being overturned every night again. I don't know why I started holding back lately and what I am afraid from. Ok, it's a little creepy, but I miss the experience a (amongst the strangest things that have happened to me) and would like to understand its significance.
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Daniel M. Ingram, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: What are these spacequakes? (Answer)

Posts: 3192 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
As you are clearly already aware, the dDx (differential diagnosis) is either the A&P or Fruitions, and then either Dark Night (if they were A&P, which most of the time they are), or Review leading to new territory (rarer, but not so much around the DhO).

Sorting out which is which can sometimes be easy, but perhaps you should talk with someone about this, as sometimes these things take that level of engagement. Pick a strong meditator here who you seem to resonate with, there are many, and ask to speak with them about it. Even then, sometimes this can be murky and diagnoses can be wrong.

If you got Fruitions, you should have all sorts of things, such as easy access to jhanas just by resolving to have them, a greatly expanded dharma understanding, and other things, as I outline.

A&P typically happens at night for a lot of people, involves profound shifts, and then fades with people wanting to go back to it, but Review leading to new territory can do that also.

If you have stream entry, you should be able to make resolutions to not go on and return to Review territory and get Fruitions again. If it is the A&P it may show up again after practice has faded somewhat or if you go on retreat.

See what happens next, keep an open mind, and keep practicing and investigating: these are fundamentally good advice and standard procedure, regardless of what it was.

On a practice note: notice sensations like the patterns of phenomena that make up wanting to get back, wondering where you are, and those sorts of things, as they can hold people up regardless of where you are.

Helpful?

Daniel
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Julius Dodd, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: What are these spacequakes?

Posts: 50 Join Date: 8/17/09 Recent Posts
Daniel M. Ingram:

If you got Fruitions, you should have all sorts of things, such as easy access to jhanas just by resolving to have them, a greatly expanded dharma understanding, and other things, as I outline.
...
If you have stream entry, you should be able to make resolutions to not go on and return to Review territory and get Fruitions again. If it is the A&P it may show up again after practice has faded somewhat or if you go on retreat.

See what happens next, keep an open mind, and keep practicing and investigating: these are fundamentally good advice and standard procedure, regardless of what it was.

On a practice note: notice sensations like the patterns of phenomena that make up wanting to get back, wondering where you are, and those sorts of things, as they can hold people up regardless of where you are.

Helpful?

Daniel

Yes, helpful, thanks.
As to easy jhana access, usually it's number 1 and 2, I am not that experienced with them, but practicing. My concentration in general is not that reliable.
Dharma understanding I can't compare to anything, it is permanently growing, in proportion with my ability to stay mindful and look clearly. Three characteristics are not hard to find at any time.
The thoughts about this thing are notable, I'll stay alert emoticon

The funny thing was that I mostly focused on the jhanic state afterwards, had the goal to access it at will, and only then the entrance became obvious. Could be that the blissful state is accessible (and was accessed by me earlier) without going through the shaking and that they are two things, but I can't remember them as showing separately.

About the resolution not to progress, good idea to see what happens, but wouldn't it hurt if I am still in the dark night or equanimity?
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Daniel M. Ingram, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: What are these spacequakes?

Posts: 3192 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Good resolutions include enough so that they will work well, such as, "If that was the A&P, may I continue to progress in understanding and get stream entry. If that was a Fruition, may I go back and Review that territory to understand it better."
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Julius Dodd, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: What are these spacequakes?

Posts: 50 Join Date: 8/17/09 Recent Posts
I am left with the feeling I'll have to play hide and seek.
I know where my friend is hiding (she isn't really hiding, she wants to be found and knows I'll find her sooner or later), but I cannot look in her direction, point towards her place or go towards it. But looking and going and checking is all I've learned.
So I'll check out all possible hideouts without much hope of finding her there until I realize ... if I knew what, the game would be over.

What you are searching is what is searching. (Francis of Assisi)
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Daniel M. Ingram, modified 11 Years ago.

RE: What are these spacequakes?

Posts: 3192 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
No hide and seek needed. Simply noticing what arises as it does is the key, the foundation of all practice, the foundation of all surrender, the foundation of goal-oriented effort, where the rubber meets the road, the fundamental instruction. If the resolution thing is not helpful, drop it, no biggie.