Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Tim Farrington, modified 11 Months ago.

Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts

Live in the nowhere that you came from, even though you have an address here.

Rumi, in Coleman Barks's rendering


edit, 4/15.2020

Welcome to the Bar of Last Resort. If you have found your way here by accident, my advice is to run for the exit door, where you will be given a complimentary beverage of your choice for the wisdom of Not Starting. 

If you have unfortunately Started, for whatever misguided reasons, then better by far to finish, and drinks are on the house until all sentient beings are saved, because as the obviously slowest sentient boat afloat, i am doomed to be the last one out of this bar, and will be tending bar at various points, or at least taking the occasional dishwashing and janitorial shifts throughout, and will be available to serve drinks at any time if i can figure out how to pour them into a receptable that doesn't leak too much, and also not poison the person through unskillful means. I personally recommend getting someone else to make your drinks, as any patron of the Bar of Last Resort is cleared to bartend, merely by being in the place, and a number of these people pour with a very slow four-count, if you know what i mean, and i think you do, wink-wink. If you don't know what i mean, i mean that some of the drinks these fuckers pour . . . well, let's just say a little dab will do ya.

Our present primary bartender is Ludwig Wittgenstein, so take your language games directly to him. 

If you have come here from a purely morbid or personally-skin-in-the-game interest in spiritual carnage and meditation-related difficulties, the free drinks are two for one.

If you have been invited here, that was irresponsible on my part, and I apologize. Have a drink. All exit doors remain wide open at all times, by order of the Fire Marshall.

If you have come here because we are in a giant fight on another thread and i have asked you to take it outside, please identify yourself to the doorman as you enter. He or she will give you as many free drinks as you are willing to drink before sending you out into the alley behind the bar, where i will continue to do my best to tear you a new asshole.

This is also my Practice Log, from 4/13/20--- at some point, i started trying to distinctly indicate practice log entries with a first line heading.

For those interested in the present Ongoing Remedial Sesshin For Pre-Vipassana noting-practice for pre-beginners, and Bonus Journal of a Descent into Manic Psychosis While Hoping to Flatten the Curve, it begins somewhere on 4/13/20 below.

If you're here, really, for any reason at all, truly, God help you.

Namaste,
tim



edit, 4/13/20
As I have roamed the playground of DhO since my latest return to being active here, i have cme to appreciate that people's practice logs are invaluable in so many ways, and are invariably a truly generous gift to the community of this sangha. So i am re-purposing this post as my own practice log.

It seems perfect to me that it is embedded in the Dark Night category of DhO, because so much of my learning curve (just corrected a funny typo here: "my learning curse," lol, was tempted to leave it in (sic)) has come in the dukha nanas territory, and John of the Cross and Daniel Ingram's MCBT (1 and 2, going back to 2011) have been my best teachers and greatest helps. In that same vein, Rumi said, "Live in the nowhere that you can from, even though you have an address here." I think the practice logs are as close as the sangha of people living in the various linguistic variations on the nowhere we came from have on DhO to a local address, with the implicit invitation to welcome visitors, and, in my case, as a good red herring for cops arriving to serve warrants. So welcome to this thread, and to tell you the truth, Officer, it seems possible to me that some people just don't get my humor.

Everything below may thus be considered both in the light of an highly interested practioner interested in anything beyond the Dark Night, and also as my basic practice log, beginning in January of 2020, from this day forward, forever and ever, worlds without end, amen.


January, 2020


Please forgive what must look like an excessively long and self-indulgent message here. I was looking for a balance between adequate context and succinctness, and seem to have erred on the side of context. For those who find their compassion and patience overtaxed at any point, you might be able to just skip right to the last paragraph for my actual request at its most succinct.

I first encountered DhO in 2011, after finding Daniel’s MCTB (first edition, then) and being astonished, energized, and inspired by its lucidity, precision, and no-bullshit brilliance. I knew he was the real deal, in a vanishingly rare way, and the book took its place on my crucial shelf with the works of John of the Cross and Bernadette Roberts, both Catholic contemplatives whose dark night terminology and spiritual maps are in theistic language of course (though Roberts goes well beyond John X to what she calls “No-Self,” and has inspired no end of handwringing among a certain set of modern day heresy-watchers). I had actually started out with Buddhism in my teens, and then Siddha Yoga, the Muktananda lineage, and it was in a Siddha Yoga kundalini-oriented ashram that I first found my way to John X, whose phenomenology of the dark night was the only thing that rang true to me for a very long time, no matter how many names God had. The Mushroom Factor in those days was even higher than it is now, and warning labels about inevitable horrors don’t help fill the seminar seats, of course. It is so wonderful how frankly Daniel addresses the genuine dangers of the night side of the path, and does nothing to minimize the real hazards.

Anyway, I am a fairly classic Chronic Dark Night Yogi. I have been a novelist for my working adult life, weaving my prayer practice with that, and tended to basically cycle through the night to equanimity, and then do what in retrospect looks to me like a kind of judo pivot move to use whatever moved at that point to reinvest the energy in whatever I was trying to write. That was attainment enough for me, for a long time, as a miserable sonofabitch working class slob writer (who also happened to be bipolar, which is its own educational path). I have been blessed by my karmic chickens coming home to roost in recent years, a series of perfect storms in all my circumstances that drove me back to the most fundamental practice, with a desire for liberation arising so purely in the extremes that I could even say “Fuck that art shit” at the crucial moments, and just stick with meditation. So my current practice is about three hours a day, in three sits, of a kind of body-breath-word technique, saturated with the Three Characteristics (transience and suffering are straightforward, even for an apophatic theist, and no-self comes in attentive practice, as your realize the body and breath and mind are doing all the work on their own).

Again, please forgive the protracted intro. My point is that I was recently inspired to re-order MCTB because I was thinking I was in something like equanimity. (The second edition is significantly better than the already-wonderful and useful first, like well-aging wine, and thank you Daniel for taking that trouble.) It started dawning with the realization that what I often think of as the night’s hellish burning is no longer painful, at some point during meditation. I follow sensations as they arise, and it is clearly the body that has “done” this quieting; the best I can do is not try too hard to “help.” It is like a master artisan doing a craft that requires tremendous experience, skill, precision, finesse, with a four-year-old sitting on her lap, “helping.” That the artisan can get it done anyway is astonishing and awesome in itself. But somehow it happens, and I am at the hatha yogic balance in the meditation asana, feeling the crux but without the sharpness of actual pain at the edge. If I think, as the four-year-old, that I have done this, I can try to continue “doing” it with an inevitably heavy hand, and begin to hurt again. If I think I have done it by following the movement of the breath, which is synced-up now, I seize up there too, stomping along behind with the lead-footed tread of self-control. So the first necessity here is the genuine realistic humility of letting the body and breath do this precision operation in the full and clear knowledge that it is just not mine to do. I cannot express the sense of simple relief, after hell: imagine years spent in a flame that suddenly doesn’t hurt. Gratitude is very frequent here, especially after prolonged pain and mental and emotional distress; and it is possible to cultivate some bliss here, though that takes work, and the bliss is empty enough to a dark-night-adjusted vision that it is relatively easy to let go of it and continue in prayer. (“Fuck that bliss shit.”)

It is like surfing along the edge of the pain, in its way: body and breath know precisely where the threshold is, and, impossibly, stay just ahead of it. The self can hurt, at this point, magnifying sensation as an act of will, just to feel oriented; or it can let this impossible thing the breath and body are doing continue, out of its control, somehow staying “ahead of” the pain without really understanding the cues that are keeping the process on track. It is surprisingly, revealingly hard to not just go to experiencing the pain, for the reliable familiarity of that feedback, and it takes real discipline to simply note the highly mobile, incalculably dynamic field of recurrent subtle sensation that is not pain here.

It is not a “glimpse,” it is a sustainable condition, in prayer, at least. What glimpses there are come with the occasional realization that if the state had content and context, something “to do,” (a mission from God: the Blues Brothers saying, Thy will be done), then . . . it would be doable. There is an intuition in it of a viable way to live, if only blah blah blah. But it is entirely without any specifics except what it takes to simply stay with it, body, breath, and word in sync and renewing. Spacing out just seems to deepen it, when I realize and return: breath and body are still there, often quieter than before if the return is skillful, and the feedback just gets subtler, often changing qualitatively, even to purely visual with no tactile dimension apparent, like lightning without thunder, though more usually it is like a number of distinct lightning flashes, and anticipating thunder after each, but only one thunder discernible at last, and that distant, and the lightning is already several thunderless flashes ahead by then; and attention, tuning to that subtler signal, grows gentler, less lead-footed and heavy-handed, as it feels it can. It is a knack, of sorts, distinctly learnable, through an evolving array of “forms” and presentation, each susceptible to various metaphors right up until I take the metaphor as predictive or determinative and it seizes up and I let it go. There is often a sense of a field of sensation, much less localized, and the changes arise as subtler ripples propagating through the field, in a way that is slow enough to follow without any sense of urgency whatsoever. It is doable, all of it, even through transitions where it seems impossible to sustain amid a high-speed, high-tempo “demand” on the attention that I know perfectly well is impossible to sustain at such a crazy frequency, on sheer physical and concentrative grounds. And yet if I stick with it all the way through into having no idea how, it continues to be doable. But all it seems to do is itself.

So two questions, I guess, as the desperate guy at the end of his rope that I am: 1) does this ring true as equanimity; and 2) (knowing that the answer in any case is probably “Stick with the practice”) any helpful advice? In all realism, I would have to say that I have not achieved stream entry in any form that I can recognize in retrospect, when all is said and done. I have cycled through everything else up to this stage of insight from what seems like every direction and angle, and the states are replicable in the simplest sense. But I have no traction whatsoever on the good stuff. So this is the most remedial possible equanimity prior to stream entry, prior to first path, is my best guess. Help?
 
thank you for your patience, attention, and kindness, Tim F.
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Matthew, modified 1 Year ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 92 Join Date: 10/31/19 Recent Posts
1) Yes, sounds like a dead ringer as far as my understanding goes, FWIW.

2) I dunno about helpful, but I can try to offer some advice: It seems like you already understand the crucial point but then try to act as though it isn't true. That crucial point is that the key, hallmark feature of equanimity-nana is the sense that experience is just doing itself, without needing one sensation to privilege itself as "me" vs others which are "not-me." You seem to be arriving at this understanding already through experience.

The problem is that you aren't believing it. You take this premise and then say "...but really, though, what can I do to make it so that there's nothing to do?" Nope. If you try to "do" equanimity then how equanimous is it really? So the first piece of advice is, try not to see this as some goal you have to attain in the future as a reward for good practice. Rather, try to see this as a way of relating to experience, here, now, as the relief of not-doing rather than as another thing to do. If you must make the doer focus on doing something, make it focus on riding the "wave" of automatic present-moment doing like a surfer. A surfer doesn't need to intellectualize once they've gotten on the wave, they just feel and respond and balance. Equanimity is getting on the wave.

In fact, if you can drop past, future and hypotheticals all at will (that is, snap out of the low-level constant rumination about those things), it can speed up the process of finding that wave to the point where equanimity comes more quickly, and you can go surfing. In a theistic context you can think of this as offering your limited human conceptions to God.
Tim Farrington, modified 1 Year ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
Matthew:

The problem is that you aren't believing it. You take this premise and then say "...but really, though, what can I do to make it so that there's nothing to do?" Nope. If you try to "do" equanimity then how equanimous is it really? So the first piece of advice is, try not to see this as some goal you have to attain in the future as a reward for good practice. Rather, try to see this as a way of relating to experience, here, now, as the relief of not-doing rather than as another thing to do. If you must make the doer focus on doing something, make it focus on riding the "wave" of automatic present-moment doing like a surfer. A surfer doesn't need to intellectualize once they've gotten on the wave, they just feel and respond and balance. Equanimity is getting on the wave.

In fact, if you can drop past, future and hypotheticals all at will (that is, snap out of the low-level constant rumination about those things), it can speed up the process of finding that wave to the point where equanimity comes more quickly, and you can go surfing. 

Thank you, Matthew. You're certainly right about the recurrent efforts to "do" EQ (surfer ending up in water frequently, dreaming about the perfect wave). And "low-level constant rumination on these things," check. Just posting this thread released a nifty tidal wave of rumination, to be honest. The good news is that falling off the board right now doesn't hurt, and I can tread water in my sleep. Bigger waves of rumination also require a much finer and gentler attention, I think. But the sets keep rolling in, and the weather is lovely. So thank you for the advice to enjoy the ride, even in that awkward surfing posture of frequent-head-up-ass.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
Merci beaucoup for your early and generous interest in this thread, the road marker of my return for another active round here on DhO. I have repurposed the thread as my practice log (the heart of the Dark Night category seems a truly upscale and appropriate addess here for me, lol--- remember our Rumi, "Live in the nothingness that you came from, even though you have an address here"), and wanted to take the opportunity to thank you again for the gift of your friendship.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 3846 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
Well done, sir!
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
well, i'd like to have a place where people can come to tear me a new asshole, amigo. I needed a place that was sort of the equivalent of asking someone to "take it outside," rather than fighting it out in every bar i get into trouble in, and sullying the threads there, mucking up the water for what should really be going on. There's nothing really going on here beyond the next iteration of the old 1-2-3, and talking about that, and having it be the bar of last resort, or the alley outside the bar of last resort, i guess.

So, welcome to that, sir. Would you like tea, or something stronger perhaps? Shargrol's whiskey is two-for-one today through happy hour. Beers are on me.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 3846 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
So, welcome to that, sir. Would you like tea, or something stronger perhaps? Shargrol's whiskey is two-for-one today through happy hour. Beers are on me.

I have a soft spot for Hacker Pschorr weiss beer, but at this time of the morning, Tito's Bloody Marys. Hot and spicy with none of that fru fru shit in it.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
Chris Marti:
So, welcome to that, sir. Would you like tea, or something stronger perhaps? Shargrol's whiskey is two-for-one today through happy hour. Beers are on me.

I have a soft spot for Hacker Pschorr weiss beer, but at this time of the morning, Tito's Bloody Marys. Hot and spicy with none of that fru fru shit in it.


Coming right up, hombre.

In the interest of full disclosure, and in all willingness to bow to the discernment of the jikitsu, and risk a yellow card at best, after I get said jikijits drunk enough to trust his judgment, I called Papa Che a name. He'll no doubt lodge his formal complaint soon, knowing what an [words deleted, per DhO protocols] he is.
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Olivier, modified 1 Year ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 731 Join Date: 4/27/19 Recent Posts
If I may add something, purely from my experience : now that you have "broken through" to that equanimity thing, it will probably deepen as you keep practicing, and start infusing your life. My advice (and I don't know if it's something you can control btw, but anyways...) would be to really tap into the profoundly balanced happiness that is starting to be available to you. You are sitting on a treasure of meaning and joy, seriously. At least, that has been my experience of equanimity. Don't be afraid to infuse your life with that... Enjoy what it can offer... After all this night time you deserve plenty of joy... I would say not to rush towards an ideal goal of entering the stream etc., but to really deepen and make the most of you current experience of fire that doesn't burn, that is a precious thing to have and it needs protection and care, right ?

In my experience, that is really the high point of this whole thing, better than SE if you ask me, because after that it means you're gonna press on. You can rest for a while now, gather your strengths, and when you're ready for new things it will move on - I would add to keep the practice, but you're gonna do that anyways, I think.

Just my two cents, I hope Shargrol answers you too as his advice is always great, and he seems to have a special understanding of how to navigate EQ...

And btw I enjoyed the "self-indulgent" writing ;)
Tim Farrington, modified 1 Year ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
Olivier:
If I may add something, purely from my experience : now that you have "broken through" to that equanimity thing, it will probably deepen as you keep practicing, and start infusing your life. My advice (and I don't know if it's something you can control btw, but anyways...) would be to really tap into the profoundly balanced happiness that is starting to be available to you. You are sitting on a treasure of meaning and joy, seriously. At least, that has been my experience of equanimity. Don't be afraid to infuse your life with that... Enjoy what it can offer... After all this night time you deserve plenty of joy... I would say not to rush towards an ideal goal of entering the stream etc., but to really deepen and make the most of you current experience of fire that doesn't burn, that is a precious thing to have and it needs protection and care, right ?

Olivier, merci beaucoup pour la gentillesse et la generosite de votre reponse chaleureuse et sage, mon ami. I feel such gratitude for this community, and for the sense of comrades on the path(s). I don't think I'm experiencing much profoundly balanced happiness (bless you), but you're right that there is a sense of the potential for that, certainly, which is itself a kind of feast for me at this point, and I am treasuring my teetering portions of superficially unstable happiness with great appreciation. There really is just a sort of awe right now, almost across the board in my daily life, at not being miserable. John of the Cross says, in The Living Flame of Love, speaking to the Flame itself, "Now that you are not oppressive." I get the wonder of that, with all my heart. Jeremiah, in Lamentations, says, "Remembering my affliction and my misery, the wormwood and the gall: my soul has them still in remembrance, and is humbled in me." That humility is pure gold, that's the treasure you mention that i'm sitting on. 

Just posting this thread was a very profound thing in its own right for me, and it has brought up a lot of ruminative stuff. Which is also not oppressive right now, lol. In actual practice, I find, to push the surfing metaphor maybe a bit farther than may really hold up, that I'm bobbing up and down a lot on the higher surf of ruminative waves, and it's all i can do to get down to simple technique and grab a particular wave and try to get up on the board. But it is surprisingly, astonishingly pleasant to bob out on the water on a sunny day in February (lol, i knew the surfing metaphor would crap out at some point), especially, again, after spending so much time underwater wondering which way was up and whether I was ever going to breathe again. (You should never have said you enjoyed the self-indulgent writing, mon ami, lol.)

Again, thank you.
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Olivier, modified 1 Year ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 731 Join Date: 4/27/19 Recent Posts
Content que vous entriez dans une bonne phase, je vous souhaite de vous y établir durablement, et votre pratique porte des fruits qui demeurent. Canada j'imagine ?

To me it sounds like it will take any amount of time needed so that equanimity stabilizes, deepens and become more solid, less shaky, if you will, and in my view this is as much a heart opening thing, a trust that needs to blossom, which is not set back by circumstances (the sense of trust and acceptance which makes even fear and other mind states really ok), as it is dependent on consistent practice...  It's also about not clinging to the pleasantness, I think. Would you be ok if it wasn't pleasant ? If yes, that will be a sign of progress IMHO. It's really a form of phusis, of inclination and movement of the being towards maturation : "What was said to the rose that made it open, was said to me here in my chest."

But there doesn't need to be any pressure, things happen when they must, right ?

At some point it could become so equanimous that you forget that there ever were flames to begin with, and then some form of negligence could arise, pushing you to forget about practice and "ethics" and to "go back down" in a way. This has happened to me a few times I guess, and I reckon it's pretty common. So it's a balance...

But I would say that getting used to the sunny pleasantness of the still ocean, letting it happen on its own, trusting that it will not go away, because that's kind of what's gonna happen if you just let yourself be taken by the stronger pull of what you truly love, is important ^^

I tried surfing once and really disliked it. Why get agitated and get burnt eyes from the salt when you could sit in the warm sand and observe the myriad reflections of the waves with a smile on your face ???

It's a bit cliche, but for me, reading Rumi, or at least, Barks' rumi, usually brings this sense of lucid trust and quiet, disinterested awe you mention, which I associate with equanimity. Do you know this one ?


The Guest House

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from the beyond.

Tim Farrington, modified 1 Year ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
Olivier, pas le Canada, juste le français au high school et une profonde appréciation précoce de Camus. Le mythe de Sisyphe était énorme pour moi, tôt et souvent. Il commence dans le pire des jhanas dukkha --- "Il n'y a qu'un problème philosophique vraiment sérieux: c'est le suicide" --- et se termine avec ce que je pensais être Equanimity mais maintenant le suspect est en fait le cycle fractal sans fin de chemin après chemin: «Il faut imaginer Sisyphe heureux».

I am presently finding myself grateful for the rock, grateful for the absurd practice of my mechanical little algorithm of technique. Truly, there is interest in every step, body and breath accomplishing the movement, gravity accomplishing the renewal and the next fractal iteration begins. I am a slave to an arbitrary method of endlessly accomplishing nothing! What’s not to love?

I love the Rumi, thank you for sharing it. You're right on, offering precisely the same hospitality to each guest seems key right now.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
Olivier:
If I may add something, purely from my experience : now that you have "broken through" to that equanimity thing, it will probably deepen as you keep practicing, and start infusing your life. 

Olivier, merci beaucoup, as ever. I have repurposed/multipurposed this thread into my practice log, and replying to your great post here is the perfect door into where I am since January.

My advice (and I don't know if it's something you can control btw, but anyways...) would be to really tap into the profoundly balanced happiness that is starting to be available to you. You are sitting on a treasure of meaning and joy, seriously. At least, that has been my experience of equanimity. Don't be afraid to infuse your life with that... Enjoy what it can offer... After all this night time you deserve plenty of joy... I would say not to rush towards an ideal goal of entering the stream etc., but to really deepen and make the most of you current experience of fire that doesn't burn, that is a precious thing to have and it needs protection and care.

amen, mon frere.

In my experience, that is really the high point of this whole thing, better than SE if you ask me, because after that it means you're gonna press on. You can rest for a while now, gather your strengths, and when you're ready for new things it will move on -

This is where some degree of interesting, uh, perspective has come in for me in this latest set of approaches to and passes through EQ. I have realized that in my base practice vocabulary of John of the Cross/Bible-as-word-of-God, cradle-Roman-Catholic-evolved-into-realization-of-Christianity-as-a-schismatic-sect-of Judaism, and person willing to let Jesus' question in the Gospels, "Who do men say that I am?" remain unsatisfactorily answered in my personal case--- to make a long sentence longer: i think it is against my religion to go anywhere beyond the point where stream entry flows off into theravadan meanderings, circa EQ. In God terms, anything beyond that point can only be the delightedly extinguished soul joyously particpating to the best of its capacity in the perfect will of the all merciful God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, and Jesus. That various Christian---and Jewish, and Islamic, for starters--- mystics and contemplatives have ventured into language that seems to suggest otherwise is, as i read it, a product of trying to somehow suggest a certain kind of intoxication to their brethren and sisters, God-intoxicated madness (think Rumi, here). Margreet Porete was burned at the stake in Paris in the early 14th century, for being crazy enough to insist on the complete annihilation of the soul in God, and I'm inclined to think she is cool as hell, though i'd i'd been around i would have advised her to shut the fuck up. But what she said.

so again: Olivier: that is really the high point of this whole thing, better than SE if you ask me.

It is the high point, i think for everyone, meaning every one; every "constructed self,"; everything beyond here is a degree of anatta, in every tradition, I think.

I would add to keep the practice, but you're gonna do that anyways, I think.


Amen. I've shot my way today, but I do intend to use this now as my practice log, so i would be delighted if you stayed tuned. And thank you for your beautiful kindness early on toward me; you and Matthew, it's enough to make me say vive la France.


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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 1660 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
Oh crap emoticon sorry but all this Rumi and Open The Heart stuff gives me heartburn emoticon 

Ingram totally nailed the EQ describtion in his book. He mentioned no Rumi, no Open The Heart but always, NOTE the mind states and body sensations. Like always and ONLY.

In my words;
cling not to the pleasant shift from Re-observation into early EQ (if you do, it will catapult you back into the shit hole you just came out of), panoramic awareness, all senses are already included, all feel is neutral-ish (its neutral but the minds habit is remembering that certain unpleasantness are now suddenly neutral, mind is not yet acoustom to this option), less efforting so to let all be there in a loose way, acceptance of it all and let it unfold, boredom at later stage (could come in a few days), acceptance of it and let it unfold ... Blip when you least expect it (could also come in a few days after the boredom with EQ or even suddenly or never if your horoscope is totally fucked).

EQ is a bit like fishing. You throw the hook into water and wait. Yes it can be boring but you still wait and just look. The fish might hook up but it might also refuse the bait. What can you do but sit and look and be bored with all that Status Quo-ness of it all. Acceptance yet again same as in DN.

Have a nice day and see you on the other side!


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Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
Papa Che Dusko:
Oh crap emoticon sorry 


You're either yanking my chain or insulting me by apologizing. emoticon since you said "crap," and since it's you, i will take it as both, wave/particle in nature. emoticon

but all this Rumi and Open The Heart stuff gives me heartburn

emoticon

Ingram totally nailed the EQ describtion in his book. He mentioned no Rumi, no Open The Heart but always, NOTE the mind states and body sensations. Like always and ONLY.



Papaji, my emoticon master, this thread being now the place where I can tell people to come if i think we should take it outside and not break any tables in whatever bar we're in, i can't tell you to come here. And i don't want to take it outside with you, my love, out of purely fucking laziness and drunken inertia. So we'll have to fight this out here at the bar, disturbing my equanimity profoundly, if that's okay with you. Chris will tell us when we've broken too many tables, and offended too many people, and scared too many others.

There is a sutra in the agnostic scriptures that holds the position that anything is allowed in the Bar of Last Resort. It has interesting parallels in other traditions. Augustine of Hippo said, "Love God, and do whatever the fuck you want." (Ama deum et fac quod vis, translation may vary with user.) This would be great, as i'd hate for us to end up getting caught fighting in the alley out back when all sentient beings are saved and they close the bar down. I mean, if all sentient beings are saved, and you and i are fighting, what does that make us? 

On the other other hand, the one touching the other hand, the point of sensative attention between two thumbs, Ni Nurta said to me recently, on the Bodhisattva sutra, "What about beings that are not sentient? If you start excluding beings to reduce their numbers you won't get far in this Bodhisattva business..." and i was forced to concede, "Okay, rocks are in. Although I have a sneaking suspicion about the sentience of rocks, actually. But name me a non-sentient being, and the tent's open to them." And then i fucking met Smiling Stone.

The endless waters of endless . . . aaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh! (panicked scream of last being, sentient, insentient, whatever, demonstrably unsaved, and de facto unsavable, nama-rup/nama-arupa, "tim".)


What was i saying? Oh yeah, fuck you Papa Che, and your raspberry eurotrash beret, and your guerilla upaya. emoticon

In my words; 

cling not to the pleasant shift from Re-observation into early EQ (if you do, it will catapult you back into the shit hole you just came out of), panoramic awareness, all senses are already included, all feel is neutral-ish (its neutral but the minds habit is remembering that certain unpleasantness are now suddenly neutral, mind is not yet acoustom to this option), less efforting so to let all be there in a loose way, acceptance of it all and let it unfold, boredom at later stage (could come in a few days), acceptance of it and let it unfold ... Blip when you least expect it (could also come in a few days after the boredom with EQ or even suddenly or never if your horoscope is totally fucked).


I am ALWAYS in the shit hole I just came out of. See the Bodhisattva thread, lame-brain. (Yeah, go ahead, go tattle to Chris Marti that i called you a name. I dare you. I double dog dare you. I will ad hominem your ass.)

emoticon
 


EQ is a bit like fishing. You throw the hook into water and wait. Yes it can be boring but you still wait and just look. The fish might hook up buty it might also refuse the bait. What can you do but sit and look and be bored with all that Status Quo-ness of it all. Acceptance yet again same as in DN.

Fucking A! This is actually the height of my aspirations. EQ is like the gutter after the binge: nothing much going on, but the absence of pain is enough for a drunk like me. People leave me alone, when i'm lying in the gutter.

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Have a nice day and see you on the other side! emoticon

I'll leave it to better anattas than "me" to tear you a new one on that "other side" shit.

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Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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So, in the renewal of spirit here on this re-purposed thread, in its practice log aspect, closing out the graveyard shift in The Bar of Last Resort, with a smoke break in the alley:

I taken Daniel Ingram seriously when he says that techniques work as advertised, applied rightly. My go-to technique in basic practice is what I think of as a three-step technique: 1. Find the body and attend to that blip, wherever and however it presents itself on the radar screen of the six senses. 2. Note the breath as it arises, peaks, and passes. 3. Rinse with the technique's heart. Repeat as necessary, until all sentient brings as saved, hell is empty, and, uh, the good stuff, all that stuff.

Body, breath, word, 1, 2, 3. Body is dukha, almost always the easiest to find for me. Breath is anicca, transient in its essence, unless you're dead. 3. "Word" is anatta, the necessity of not-self, the rock that is higher than "I", the teknos of technique, the logos of the spiritual logic, in all its forms. In my native tradition, it is the word of God, and i use it in a fashion that is frankly mantra-like, despite the handwringing of many in the theistic traditions. (cf. the godawful assaults on the Centering Prayer movement for practicing something like the kind of heyschasm that goes back to the desert monks in the centuries after Jesus and lives on in robust fashion in the Eastern Orthodoxy.)

(fun side note: I've been reading lately about the history of a quasi-heretical use of the simplest repetition of the Name of the Lord in classic heyschast fashion, among the monks on Mt. Athos. At some point, some well-meaning devotee wrote a little tract that said the technique was so great that he saw it that the Name of God WAS God, so simply to invoke the Name was to be present to the Highest. Complications ensued, "the Name is God" proved to be a real fire-starter technique for a bunch of monks, to such a point that the monks who thought it was heresy, in that formulation, started fighting with the ones who were lit up with the technique's success in their own practice. It got to the point at which the Greek government felt they couldn't let it go on without intervention on Mt. Athos, an island left alone to its own monastic devices for hundreds of years at that point. The Tsar';s government, to forestall Greece taking over what was viewed as actually Russian territory, forestalled the Greek intervention and sent destroyers. The "Name of God is God" monks barricaded themselves in several monastaries, troops landed and blew them all out into the open with fire hoses, and scattered the heretics to various corners of Russia to scatter the problem, while the Metropole worked out whether that Name shit was a heresy or not. WW 1 broke out before the issue was settled, and the occasional Name fight still breaks out today, though no destroyers have had to be sent in recently.

the 1-2-3 by the numbers triune way of thinking of technique also appeals to my birth-Trinitarian devotional side, even though I can't answer, for my myself, yet, Jesus' Gospel question, "Who do men say that I am?" and am appalled by the two millennia of fratricide by people who do think they've answered it correctly. I take it as a koan, really.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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I taken Daniel Ingram seriously when he says that techniques work as advertised, applied rightly. My go-to technique in basic practice is what I think of as a three-step technique: 1. Find the body and attend to that blip, wherever and however it presents itself on the radar screen of the six senses. 2. Note the breath as it arises, peaks, and passes. 3. Rinse with the technique's heart. Repeat as necessary, until all sentient brings as saved, hell is empty, and, uh, the good stuff, all that stuff.

Tim, is this a description of your noting practice? I'm asking because I'm interested in getting more detail from you: what are the objects that arise when you do this practice, and what do you observe about them? Can you pick one recent instance of this, say a five to ten second occurrence, and describe it here?

Thanks.


Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Chris Marti:
I taken Daniel Ingram seriously when he says that techniques work as advertised, applied rightly. My go-to technique in basic practice is what I think of as a three-step technique: 1. Find the body and attend to that blip, wherever and however it presents itself on the radar screen of the six senses. 2. Note the breath as it arises, peaks, and passes. 3. Rinse with the technique's heart. Repeat as necessary, until all sentient brings as saved, hell is empty, and, uh, the good stuff, all that stuff.

Tim, is this a description of your noting practice? I'm asking because I'm interested in getting more detail from you: what are the objects that arise when you do this practice, and what do you observe about them? Can you pick one recent instance of this, say a five to ten second occurrence, and describe it here?

Thanks.



As a five-ten second sequence, and speaking the alien language of that kind of noting as I understand it and also from my recent lesson on Papa Che's video log:

ass hurts . . . fear . . . fear . . . turn to breath, upswing . . . seeing breah space . . . tension in temple . . . holding . . . worrying . . . edge of pain in temple . . . word . . . temple stress easing . . . fuck this is doable . . . i could fucking do this . . . i can stand this, actually . . . breath incoming, first movement . . . riding that . . . word . . .
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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ass hurts . . . fear . . . fear . . . turn to breath, upswing . . . seeing breah space . . . tension in temple . . . holding . . . worrying . . . edge of pain in temple . . . word . . . temple stress easing . . . fuck this is doable . . . i could fucking do this . . . i can stand this, actually . . . breath incoming, first movement . . . riding that . . . word . . .

These are all thoughts and somewhat emotionally charged "things." I'm going to theorize that these are very difficult things for you to apply the noting technique for the purpose Daniel Ingram lays out in MCTB. Would you be willing to try something slightly different? I'm thinking here that you choose an object that's pretty obvious to you. I used to put my hands together and focus on one place where they were touching. If you do this for ten or fifteen minutes, and you watch that object - the sensation of your two hands touching - what do you observe about that one thing?

And yes, there will be other things that interfere with this exercise - other thoughts, distractions, and so on. When those happen, just realize it and come back to your focus on the object being created when your hands touch.

Fair?

Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Chris Marti:
ass hurts . . . fear . . . fear . . . turn to breath, upswing . . . seeing breah space . . . tension in temple . . . holding . . . worrying . . . edge of pain in temple . . . word . . . temple stress easing . . . fuck this is doable . . . i could fucking do this . . . i can stand this, actually . . . breath incoming, first movement . . . riding that . . . word . . .

These are all thoughts and somewhat emotionally charged "things." I'm going to theorize that these are very difficult things for you to apply the noting technique for the purpose Daniel Ingram lays out in MCTB

 yes


Would you be willing to try something slightly different?


yes

I'm thinking here that you choose an object that's pretty obvious to you. I used to put my hands together and focus on one place where they were touching. If you do this for ten or fifteen minutes, and you watch that object - the sensation of your two hands touching - what do you observe about that one thing? And yes, there will be other things that interfere with this exercise - other thoughts, distractions, and so on. When those happen, just realize it and come back to your focus on the object being created when your hands touch.


I use a re-purposed rosary in mala-like fashion in my practice, so I can just start with the Blessed Heart Of the Mother of God medallion piece at the start of the decades, both thumbs touching it, if you think that would work here. I will try this the next time I can stand it.

Fair?



Eminently fair, yes. Thank you.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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I think the rosary will work just fine. Let's try this and see what we get!
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Okay, I took a run at it, for lack of anything better to do than get taken into custody by alarming my neighbors here.

10 minutes, maxed out, using the Virgin medallion as my touch point, with both thumbs meeting there. I'm in a manic energy regime right now, and ten minutes without a walking meditation is as much as i've managed for about a week now, so with a fourth meditation today this is now a step up into a mild but distinct sense of meditation retreat, inching toward sesshin.

The first run through, it was like a fourth step in my basic three step, for a while, brain out of habit going to prominent body sense, breath, mantra, oh right this is a new technique and where is that fucking touch point? Our Mother of God was impalpable, like trying to feel my fingertips while getting swept down a river, not exactly the most distinct blip on the bodily radar. In practice, it is like imagination, or an abstraction, letting go of everything again and again and trying to feel a place i know exists, which i can't find. It certainly simplifies things wonderfully, and the cycling gets faster and faster, everything, ?, everything, ? . . . My thoughts want it to be a literal mustard seed of faith, like: what does this literal mustard seed really feel like? It's pure koan right now. I can't fucking find it, all i can find is the intention to find it.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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That's all perfectly okay!

Also, please try again when you have the time and the inclination. After a few more tries, if the touchpoint on your rosary doesn't work we can choose another thing to pay attention to.

Questions?
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Chris Marti:
That's all perfectly okay!

Also, please try again when you have the time and the inclination. After a few more tries, if the touchpoint on your rosary doesn't work we can choose another thing to pay attention to.

Questions?


I appear to have stumbled into my vipassana intensive retreat, no liability incurred on your part, given my psychiatric history and meditation AMA and so forth. so i am going to take another run at it now. The literal pain in my ass may work better, today, and i'll try that next. But I'm taking another run at Our Lady of Maniacs now, and will check in post.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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If you do this for ten or fifteen minutes, and you watch that object - the
sensation of your two hands touching - what do you observe about that one
thing? And yes, there will be other things that interfere with this
exercise - other thoughts, distractions, and so on. When those happen, just
realize it and come back to your focus on the object being created when your
hands touch.

i took you pretty literally on the hint of "the object being created" this time, and put some literal effort into creating the sensation. 05:37, just above five minutes, i'm also taking you literally on the suggested timing of shooting for 10-15 for openers (it's all i can manage right now anyway), and i popped out from excitement this time, somehow, characteristic of manic energy, and had to go have a cigarette (don't start).

The medallion back side has two strings running through it, and i put one thumb on each string this time, and did a sort of systole-diastole thing of enough thumb against the strings to feel them, and release, which at least put the created object clear enough for me to return to it. It is similar in flavor only to something i've experienced in extremes of desire for liberation, a very liberating sense of fuck it to everything but this. This idiotic reduction of everything to this pulse of thumbs against tension is good enough for me, kind of thing, so very liberating immediately, in that sense, and fuck tempo, let it rise and fall according to the fundamental beat of desperation. This object, this is the work. . . . fuck you all, every one, bye-bye. This object, this pulse here in the thumbs, this rough string against the fingerprints. 

The pain in my ass faded nicely, but it is still the easiest thing to find at this point in the sesshin. Let me know if you think that might be better. But I sort of like pulling my own strings already, or the Mater-theos's strings, i guess. 
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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continuing in my spontaneous grace, gift of God sesshin here. I am using the technique Chris gave me scrupulously, and waiting for him to ask me for money, because this is priceless attention from him.

Last sit, I set the timer for a stretching-it but realistic 10 minutes, and went the full ten. Will add a minute for the next round. It is possible that Chris Marti, alone among humanity, has found a way to keep me out of china shops during a mania. 

I had a mini conceptual/framing insight this time through, of treating the technique as a very particular hatha yoga asana, and finding the specific point of tension in the mudra-type technique's created object. This simplified things enormously for me, and allowed me to more easily and cheerfully let go of my previous technique's inclinations as they arose, which should feel like burning my only bridge to sanity, but does't, it feels kind of liberating and light. My thumb pads feel almost scalded, very sensitized at this point, and i thought at a couple of points this could be affecting my fingerprints. If so, good, as i am wanted under my previous indentities in Oklahoma and Indiana, among other places.

The freedom from internal verbalization is very sweet. The whole thing continues to have that giddy fuck-it let-it-all-burn flavor of the most intense desire for liberation, without angst or weight, just a kind of exhilaration in every return of attention to the object. I've long thought that practice could be reduced to shub , the Hebrew word for "turn" or "return" to God, in its strongest usage, but a very pedestrian "turn," generally. It is sold badly short by New Testament translations of the usage by John the Baptist and Jesus as "repent," and even the Greek metanoia and verb forms. This technique is nothing but shub, naked shub. I love it.

Off to walk off some energy. If I am not taken into custody, I will shub to do the next round.

p.s. Radio check, radio check. Papa Che Actual, do you read me. This is Whiskey Tango Foxtrot 1, radio check, situation normal all fucked up. Do you copy, over?
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Last sit was the full 11 minutes, up from 10, and all sorts of memories coming up of retreats and intensives and sesshins, of just plain not wanting to get up before the bell on grounds of pure stubborn macho, prepared to piss in my pants and change clothes during the walking meditation kind of stuff. The numbers here are laughable, but irrelevant beyond the simple as much as i can stand standard, and this is brand new territory. It's a miracle for me to sit still for 11 minutes during a mania, and I'm going as gently as possible on pushing the miracle too far.

The attention has got it narrowed down now nicely to the two threads, one per thumb, complete with spiral texture, and the medallion gone. Touch is lighter now too, finding it easier to keep the object pulsing at each shub with less overt energy. It has immense appeal for my crazed manic metaphorical mind that thread means sutra, but i shub that as quickly as i can. There is this sense at moments of a perfect samurai sword just slicing through everything with absolute simplicity and no resistance, no heed for what's being cut, just the swoosh. My earlier sense of trying to concentrate on a button while being swept over a waterfall is also gone, on this last round, like, fuck the waterfall, i've got work to do here. I can feel my fingerprints and the whorl of the thread in dance-ish juxtaposition at moments, like partners staying in contact while staying to minimize the pressure of the mutual touch. Which is good, because i keep expecting to look at my thumb pads and see them burned away, it really does feel like a painless resting on a hot stove at moments. I had thread-prints on my thumbs after my second one on this track, but none since.

I'm going to take a walk and start a pot of rice, and do the next round with the timer at 0:11:01.

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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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"this pulse here in the thumbs, this rough string against (also preassure) the fingerprints. 

The pain (maybe unpleasant) in my ass faded (vanishing) nicely, but it is still the easiest thing to find at this point in the sesshin."

Yeps! This sure sounds like Sati. Keep at it. 

I had much ars observation in my sit today; started as unpleasant numbness then turned into bubbling trubbing pulsating vibration almost massage-like with a neutral feel.

I usually stay with that which is very clear and prominent at any given moment. No wrong here but it sure helps to have that ONE ponit for re-orintation so one is not swept away into some narrative style meditation (Kenneth calls this half-arsed meditation). 
I always return to the body, lets say hands cupped together and there is warmth where they touch, touching, can get into slight vibration, maybe even numbness, wet feel between the fingers from sweating ...

Im reading you loud and clear even though I dont post, as Venerable Marti has you now and Im far faaaaar bellow His scope emoticon 
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Papa Che Dusko:
"this pulse here in the thumbs, this rough string against (also preassure) the fingerprints. 

No wrong here but it sure helps to have that ONE ponit for re-orintation so one is not swept away into some narrative style meditation (Kenneth calls this half-arsed meditation). 
I always return to the body, lets say hands cupped together and there is warmth where they touch, touching, can get into slight vibration, maybe even numbness, wet feel between the fingers from sweating ...


Thanks for the great edits, Oh Venerable Che. I will probably do a few extracurricular noting aloud video porn runs during this sesshin.

Technique right now--- Chris set me to work on this one: 

I'm thinking here that you choose an object that's pretty obvious to you. I used to put my hands together and focus on one place where they were touching. If you do this for ten or fifteen minutes, and you watch that object - the sensation of your two hands touching - what do you observe about that one thing? 

I've gone into spontaneous sesshin, under that blessing, and until he tweaks my technique, I'm sticking with the one he gave me.

I dread it when that fucker sends me his bill for this.

And yes, there will be other things that interfere with this exercise - other thoughts, distractions, and so on. When those happen, just realize it and come back to your focus on the object being created when your hands touch.


That's actually one of the sweetest things about this technique so far, the no harm, no foul, bring-it-home simplicity of it.


Im reading you loud and clear even though I dont post, as Venerable Marti has you now and Im far faaaaar bellow His scope

emoticon

 
Copy you five-by-Face, Papa Che Actual. You fucking promised to keep the channel open, amigo. You know my ass is grass out here, with the maps rotted to shit in the jungle damp. Counting on radio contact here, for when the shit hits the fan, as it does. Mean, routine report is SNAFU.  emoticon Whiskey Tango Foxtrot 1, out.

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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

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"Counting on radio contact here, for when the shit hits the fan, as it does."

Radio is on! And I do know how it is when shit hits the fan bro emoticon You just keep observing those sensations. 
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Papa Che Actual, this is Whiskey Tango Foxtrot 1, on station in deep doo-doo quadrant, routine report, SNAFU. Do you copy? Over.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Do you think about each step you make while lighting the fucking cigarette ? emoticon 

Yes. 

Do you remember when you light your VERY first cigarette? emoticon you know, than urge to get into it and be a man emoticon you feel the cig against your sweaty fingers, that anticipation arising in the chest, breathing is short and fast, like a whisper, you feel that distance as you urge, being shorter between the hand and lips getting ready to wrap themselves around that cigarette but. And then, th tip of tongue touching the end of the cig, that sour taste of tobacco so pleasant. Then you go for the lighter/matches and ... 

Fast forward to today; you don't even know you light another cigarette as you already have one in the ashtray still fucking smoking!!! emoticon 

You want that immediacy, that curiosity in each move in each breath you take, each thing you touch, each urge you feel. Not because it's a fucking practice emoticon It's being alive and conscious emoticon 

10 minutes of actual practice is fine. Try and nurture this curious immediacy throughout the day Without going into some guilt trips. Note that guilt. Note that ending of the 30 minute session because of that Urge, that Restlesness. Pinpoint that restless feeling in a body. Is it in the chest, is it in the belly? 

10 minutes is fine. Instead of dreading 20 more just to say hey look I e sat for 30 and dreading it is of no use. I would suggest 10 mins but do it for 10 minutes. Then during your off cushion activities still yourself and be curious about the cigarette and all those sensation involved. Or when you walk or shit or eat. Not as practice but as playful, still, curiosity. 
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Papa Che Dusko:
Do you think about each step you make while lighting the fucking cigarette ? emoticon 

Yes. 

Do you remember when you light your VERY first cigarette? emoticon you know, than urge to get into it and be a man emoticon you feel the cig against your sweaty fingers, that anticipation arising in the chest, breathing is short and fast, like a whisper, you feel that distance as you urge, being shorter between the hand and lips getting ready to wrap themselves around that cigarette but. And then, th tip of tongue touching the end of the cig, that sour taste of tobacco so pleasant. Then you go for the lighter/matches and ... 

Fast forward to today; you don't even know you light another cigarette as you already have one in the ashtray still fucking smoking!!! emoticon 

You want that immediacy, that curiosity in each move in each breath you take, each thing you touch, each urge you feel. Not because it's a fucking practice emoticon It's being alive and conscious emoticon 

10 minutes of actual practice is fine. Try and nurture this curious immediacy throughout the day Without going into some guilt trips. Note that guilt. Note that ending of the 30 minute session because of that Urge, that Restlesness. Pinpoint that restless feeling in a body. Is it in the chest, is it in the belly? 

10 minutes is fine. Instead of dreading 20 more just to say hey look I e sat for 30 and dreading it is of no use. I would suggest 10 mins but do it for 10 minutes. Then during your off cushion activities still yourself and be curious about the cigarette and all those sensation involved. Or when you walk or shit or eat. Not as practice but as playful, still, curiosity. 

I love you, Papa-ji. emoticon
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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I can feel my fingerprints and the whorl of the thread in dance-ish juxtaposition at moments, like partners staying in contact while staying to minimize the pressure of the mutual touch. Which is good, because i keep expecting to look at my thumb pads and see them burned away, it really does feel like a painless resting on a hot stove at moments. I had thread-prints on my thumbs after my second one on this track, but none since.

Tim,

Can you keep doing this for a day or so? But don't push it too hard, too often or go too far. I'd prefer this be more like a game or some kind of play than work. While you watch your object (whatever that object is - as long as it's obvious to you), take a look at what it's composed of. What parts of what you observe can you attribute to an actual sensation and what parts are something else? What is the "something else?"


Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
I can feel my fingerprints and the whorl of the thread in dance-ish juxtaposition at moments, like partners staying in contact while staying to minimize the pressure of the mutual touch. Which is good, because i keep expecting to look at my thumb pads and see them burned away, it really does feel like a painless resting on a hot stove at moments. I had thread-prints on my thumbs after my second one on this track, but none since.

Tim,

Can you keep doing this for a day or so? 



Yes, and I want to.

But don't push it too hard, too often or go too far. I'd prefer this be more like a game or some kind of play than work.


Okay. It is very game-like right now, and it's a lot less work than anything else. I'm not pushing really at all, that i can tell. This just feels like the perfect thing to be doing right now.

While you watch your object (whatever that object is - as long as it's obvious to you), take a look at what it's composed of. What parts of what you observe can you attribute to an actual sensation and what parts are something else? What is the "something else?"


Okay. I'm sticking with the thread(s), the two thumb mudra creating the object. I'm about to do another round, but meanwhile, a question: how do i hold the discerning between sensation and "something else"? It seems like a two step. And querying the what of the "something else," ditto. I'm going to zero in on the sensation this round, with what you've said "in mind," and see how that goes.

I really cannot thank you enough right now. And Papa Che for having my six, while you're on point.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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I'm about to do another round, but meanwhile, a question: how do i hold the discerning between sensation and "something else"? It seems like a two step. And querying the what of the "something else," ditto.

The goal of this exercise is to observe the arising and the passing away of the object you're observing. So we're looking to see if we can identifiy the steps in that process. There is a sensation first. You can feel that. It has an obvious touching-sense to it, and an immediacy. It's tangible, right? But that's just the start of a process. So, for example, how do you know what it is that's touching? What is touching what? How do you know? This doesn't come easy for people, so take your time... and watch, Just watch. Watching is all you have to do.



Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Chris Marti:
I'm about to do another round, but meanwhile, a question: how do i hold the discerning between sensation and "something else"? It seems like a two step. And querying the what of the "something else," ditto.

The goal of this exercise is to observe the arising and the passing away of the object you're observing. So we're looking to see if we can identifiy the steps in that process. There is a sensation first. You can feel that. It has an obvious touching-sense to it, and an immediacy. It's tangible, right? But that's just the start of a process. So, for example, how do you know what it is that's touching? What is touching what? How do you know? This doesn't come easy for people, so take your time... and watch, Just watch. Watching is all you have to do.




I think i might be better off right now with my basic sacral pain/pang/intensity as the object? It's just so much easier taking that as the sensation object right now. 0:11:02 on the last round, and I switched mid-stream to my attention up my ass. "There is a sensation first," and it seems pretty easy right now to start with the sensation as it presents itself. Very fucking tangible. And with the clarity of the sensation signal, it is just way easier to relax and watch it evolve, to notice the drift into "something else," the construction, interpretation, first drafts on reporting to you, etc. Okay? I will stick with the mudra if you think it's better.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Tim Farrington:
Chris Marti:
I'm about to do another round, but meanwhile, a question: how do i hold the discerning between sensation and "something else"? It seems like a two step. And querying the what of the "something else," ditto.

The goal of this exercise is to observe the arising and the passing away of the object you're observing. So we're looking to see if we can identifiy the steps in that process. There is a sensation first. You can feel that. It has an obvious touching-sense to it, and an immediacy. It's tangible, right? But that's just the start of a process. So, for example, how do you know what it is that's touching? What is touching what? How do you know? This doesn't come easy for people, so take your time... and watch, Just watch. Watching is all you have to do.




I think i might be better off right now with my basic sacral pain/pang/intensity as the object? It's just so much easier taking that as the sensation object right now. 0:11:02 on the last round, and I switched mid-stream to my attention up my ass. "There is a sensation first," and it seems pretty easy right now to start with the sensation as it presents itself. Very fucking tangible. And with the clarity of the sensation signal, it is just way easier to relax and watch it evolve, to notice the drift into "something else," the construction, interpretation, first drafts on reporting to you, etc. Okay? I will stick with the mudra if you think it's better.

well, i went with my ass, 0:11:03. There is the initial locating of the sensation, and then immediately some kind of movement, a swirl or withdrawal, the attention looking for an angle to hold the sensation without intensifying it, but the sensation is gone, and there is a pulse "sent" to find it. I may be the slave of a radar metaphor right now, but the blip fades, the intention to perceive is renewed, not neatly from along a regular rotating front, which i could actually do with some imagination, but willy-nilly from a kind of nowhere that is particular, toward where i "think" the sensation is: a pulse that finds the sensation, and again, with the blip, the pulse, the actual pang, a kind of chaotic swirling of reaction, counterreaction, tweaking, efforts at control, and losing the sensation until there's a kind of gathering to send the next pulse of attention.
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Steph S, modified 12 Months ago.

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Tim Farrington:

well, i went with my ass, 0:11:03. There is the initial locating of the sensation, and then immediately some kind of movement, a swirl or withdrawal, the attention looking for an angle to hold the sensation without intensifying it, but the sensation is gone, and there is a pulse "sent" to find it. I may be the slave of a radar metaphor right now, but the blip fades, the intention to perceive is renewed, not neatly from along a regular rotating front, which i could actually do with some imagination, but willy-nilly from a kind of nowhere that is particular, toward where i "think" the sensation is: a pulse that finds the sensation, and again, with the blip, the pulse, the actual pang, a kind of chaotic swirling of reaction, counterreaction, tweaking, efforts at control, and losing the sensation until there's a kind of gathering to send the next pulse of attention.

This is pretty good. In days of yore this was termed the "attention bounce" and that kinda stuck because it makes sense and I still use it. It's the movement that happens as a sensation becomes obvious where there is a mental formation that seems to try to "grab" the sensation, a shadowy wisp of a visualization, then tension that springs back again. Keep going and see what else there is.

I also like what Chris said about what is touching what.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

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Oh nice one! "attention bounce". I have played with it yesterday or day before trying to Intent to pay attention to only one object and see for how long attention is going to stay there emoticon guess what emoticon it kept doing its own thing, sliding from one object to the next and I kept trying to keep it on that next object just to catch it in the very meoment when it slides or bounces onto the next. It just has life of its own emoticon HA! 
I will use this term from now on "attention bounce". I like it!
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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Steph S:
Tim Farrington:

well, i went with my ass, 0:11:03. There is the initial locating of the sensation, and then immediately some kind of movement, a swirl or withdrawal, the attention looking for an angle to hold the sensation without intensifying it, but the sensation is gone, and there is a pulse "sent" to find it. I may be the slave of a radar metaphor right now, but the blip fades, the intention to perceive is renewed, not neatly from along a regular rotating front, which i could actually do with some imagination, but willy-nilly from a kind of nowhere that is particular, toward where i "think" the sensation is: a pulse that finds the sensation, and again, with the blip, the pulse, the actual pang, a kind of chaotic swirling of reaction, counterreaction, tweaking, efforts at control, and losing the sensation until there's a kind of gathering to send the next pulse of attention.

This is pretty good. In days of yore this was termed the "attention bounce" and that kinda stuck because it makes sense and I still use it. It's the movement that happens as a sensation becomes obvious where there is a mental formation that seems to try to "grab" the sensation, a shadowy wisp of a visualization, then tension that springs back again. Keep going and see what else there is.

I also like what Chris said about what is touching what.


Steph, thank you, I'm honored by your visit and interest. I missed this from you earlier, but the "attention bounce" is lovely and somehow heartening, like learning the first couple crucial words in a new language. Me had, uh, attention bounce? Yes? I also get the "grab" thing, though i'm not just i would know a mental formation if it, uh, grabbed me in the ass. "Shadowy wisp of a visualization," yes too, tension that springs back again, yes, a distinct sense often of echos, ripples going out from the initial tension, bouncing off "something," and returning to relocate a slightly different aspect of a slightly altered tension.

The what is touching what is kicking my ass, because it's all happening somewhere impalpable, setting up the next palpability, or invisibly, settting up the next sense of visual space, and while my sense of the movement is distinctly constrained by muscle tensions showing the limits, it really just gets worse under attention's efforts to see what is actually doing what to what where and how. I mean, it's a serenely effortless cluster fuck of clueless efforts exercising themselves until they collapse under the dissonance. Then i just think, well, thank God my ass hurts so bad right now, it's all i've really got going for me here. I'll always have my ass, and can report, "Chris, yet again, i have located my ass once and maybe twice a sit. Me good boy, me work hahd."

It is not boring yet.

Thank you again, your attention is a gift.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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I will stick with the mudra if you think it's better.

Go with what is easier for you to notice.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
I will stick with the mudra if you think it's better.

Go with what is easier for you to notice.


Okay, thanks. I had a little supper, and am going back in search of my ass.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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0:11:06 on the last sit, just a good length, so my energy/edginess/antsiness has really settled down.

To try to hold the sensation steady just makes it crazy, basically; there is already something moving somehow even as the sensation is being noticed, a step ahead of mind and sensation, like there's a chord played and i'm trying to register the individual notes in sequence and then going nuts chasing after this note at the expense of that note, spiraling into dissonace and making new noise the whole way.

The other thing is, these are very short fucking sits, without a lot of room for different inner rhythms and spontaneous synesthesias to happen, due to the prevailing manic climate, and trying to not push too hard too fast in this grace of a sesshin. Once my ass has had a rest, I'm going to shoot for longer intervals, tomorrow, start with twenty minutes, maybe, beginners' meditation standard dose, and see from there. But I've got one more round in me this evening before i go to sleep. i was up at my usual three am this morning, and have been sitting my ass off in ten minute chunks happily all day, but mania protocol and prudence tell me from experience that pushing on beyond my normal bedtime too much is asking for a death spiral into not sleeping at all for a while, so i'm going to play it conservatively tonight and try to sleep well.

I love the simplicity of it, it is a pure cluster fuck, one step at a time, nowhere. Plus a new technique and a language i obviously don't speak a word of yet. Papa Che called it, it's like i got dropped in the middle of a Burmese forest, with no one on my six but Papa Che back there somewhere maintaining radio contact, and Chris Fucking Marti up ahead of me something calling back exquisite and explicit directions in cheerful incomprehensible Burmese. As I said, I love it, and could not be more grateful. But me no speakee, me not so smart heah.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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To try to hold the sensation steady just makes it crazy, basically; there is already something moving somehow even as the sensation is being noticed, a step ahead of mind and sensation, like there's a chord played and i'm trying to register the individual notes in sequence and then going nuts chasing after this note at the expense of that note, spiraling into dissonace and making new noise the whole way.

This is great work, Tim! You're noticing some very important things here. What does this tell you about the way you perceive things all the time?
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
To try to hold the sensation steady just makes it crazy, basically; there is already something moving somehow even as the sensation is being noticed, a step ahead of mind and sensation, like there's a chord played and i'm trying to register the individual notes in sequence and then going nuts chasing after this note at the expense of that note, spiraling into dissonace and making new noise the whole way.

This is great work, Tim! You're noticing some very important things here. What does this tell you about the way you perceive things all the time?

Uh-oh.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Internet connect was funky for a spell, so a couple, here:

6th sit, 10:05, basic toddler’s pace. It is so hard
simply to sit still while manic, and yet nothing is better for mania than to
sit still in peaceful focus. An immediate and blatantly obvious fruit of very
minimal meditative effort and practice: this deep into something that would
have had me hospitalized in the past, and not a cop at my door yet. My
neighbors still love me. I wish I could convey this to HMK somehow, but
unfortunately, he is not psychotic. But he and I are so much alike in so many
ways, including greed and despair. The true real effect of meditation properly
practiced as an antidote to both greed and despair is palpable, potent,
visible, experienceable without any special add-ons whatsoever. We pay hard,
getting greed and despair wrong; to meditate properly, even for a moment, is to
see the fruits of (even as a glimpsed possibility) beginning once in a while to
get greed and despair right. 

7th sit 0:10:06. Feeling such compassion for this battered body, and this frantic energized mind, and this
breath trying to soothe both into harmony. Just really seeing why I am so slow
to note sensation: there have been so many times it seemed like I just couldn’t
afford to note it fast enough to stay in sync with whatever the world seemed to
be asking of me, or demanding of me. I think of Linda, and the unique
meditative journey through toward realistic appreciation of her autism, having
to fight every step of the way against people prepared to take the cheap
superiority shots of the “normal.” As if every meditative journey did not
reveal everyone’s abnormality to them in ever deeper and finer grain. Patience
and acceptance, the wise man said, answering the koan of what fruits meditators
might bring to the current world crisis. Patience and acceptance, the end of
greed and the end of despair, starting within, in practice, with the self we’re
all so eager to annihilate before it ripens to fall from the tree on its own.
Starting with whoever’s on the mat beside us. Starting now.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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3rd sit of the day, 15 minutes. Papa Che's feedback on ambitiousness in length was timely (get it? "timely"? emoticon) and I am relaxed about letting the time level off where it wants to and not pushing it to impress you, or myself. I would love to impress Papa Che, though.

So a lot of harangue in this sit, very typical second day sesshin stuff, like the second day of a fast is the worst. Articulating the pace thing to me just seems so crucial: i really do take seconds to let a sensate pulse run its course and pick up the next one, and if i push that, shit starts flying in every direction from every sense door.

(edit) Chris, one funny bit from the harangue: this technique may be the most effective mania buster ever. I feel that you are going to guide me from mania to depression in a matter of days, at this point. This technique beats a straitjacket and four-point restraints in every way, and no Haldol either. For this, and all your gifts, we give you thanks, amen.

(edit 2) one more bit you might find amusing, from a bodhisattva conversation with smiling stone: 

I've actually been blessed and graced to find my way into a spontaneous sesshin under the direction of Chris Marti for now, and he's got me working technique in much more rigorous vipassana fashion, moving toward a noting practice. My first serious insight is that it seems to me that i quite literally can't stand sensation offering itself any faster than pulses of at least a couple of seconds; anything faster and it's fireworks, contortions, spasms, bolts of lightning, burning rivers of flame and lakes of fire, and speaking in tongues with Tourette's default. My Bodhisattva vow is easy-peasy, because my projected pace, by all available data, will make me the last person out of the bar whether i want to be or not. And believe me, I have tried everything to escape, it just tightens the knots. I rely on the metta of friends and strangers, in the long run.

Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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4th sit, aiming for yesterday's gold standard of 0:11:07, on the advice of my smiley master, whom i am desperate to impress. Like Mama Bear's oatmeal, just right.

pace, pace, pace. I love this technique, once i really accept what it reveals about me, my practice, my neurochemistry, etc. I really just can't stand too much embodiment. What i've learned best, I've learned in bottomless wells and lakes of fire, and there's no hurry in either of those places to achieve a high turnaround time on sensor feedback loops. Sitting in a lake of fire, one pulse is plenty for a while, and after an eon or two, you might want to consider checking for another pulse, and with some practice you can get it as hot as you like for the next sensation, and get the fuck out of dodge without even needing to feel the full burn. Ditto for dying of thirst in the desert, you just crawl on toward the next mirage, you don't need to parse every cactus thorn and rattlesnake bite, you keep enough sensory feedback to stay oriented toward the delusion of water, and crawl on. This is my home turf, and my home pace.

That said, accepting the failure of rpm ambitions, i do find this technique refreshing, interesting--- bearable, too, and sutainable. One of the MCBT2 culture things that has struck me for years is that distinct Daniel note of cranking it up. I remember reading the first edition of the book in 2011 and thinking it just sounded like he was really really good at a zapping-type video games. I love his mind and those alien capacities, and this without even getting into his phenomenological vocabulary in all that matchless subtlety and sophistication, his courage, his bull detector, all that. I love the maps, and cross maps, and fractal fine points and nuances of maps within maps. But at the end of the day, meditation for me, getting it right, is simply life and death, and trying to be Daniel-esque would kill me in about fifteen seconds. It's a recurrent fever. I would love to be Chris Marti-esque, i find those old practice logs thrilling and inspiring, just so beautiful, and I am in awe. But that would kill me in 16 seconds, maybe. I could survive maybe half a minute trying to emulate Papa-ji. and so on. But i'm not making it anywhere except at a pace i can sustain, complete with breakdowns, relapses, et al. To find my sits clocking in at 11 minutes is humiliating right up until it's liberating. To be such a clueless, phenomenologically tongue-tied beginner being hand-led into the gentlest hint of a pre-beginner's approach to noting sensation is humbling in the best sense, of humility as the highest realism: it is what it is.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

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" my smiley master, whom i am desperate to impress."

Fuck the smiley master or any one else for that matter emoticon 

Stay with what is; urge to smoke, where is the urge in the body, ah yes there, feels like pressure or else, there is craving, intention, action, touching, moving, dum satisfaction, touch, taste, ... 

Im already impressed. 
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Papa Che Dusko:
" my smiley master, whom i am desperate to impress."

Fuck the smiley master or any one else for that matter emoticon 

Stay with what is; urge to smoke, where is the urge in the body, ah yes there, feels like pressure or else, there is craving, intention, action, touching, moving, dum satisfaction, touch, taste, ... 

Im already impressed. 
I knew that. But let's face it, Papa-ji, you are a really cheap date. emoticon
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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5th sit, 10:04. Unhurried and fearless throughout, and then a big wave of physical energy lifting me out into gotta move gotta move. Was not arrested while moving. Very good sign.

The thing is, it really seems to me that every sensation, once the first pulse registered lights off the chain reaction under attention, is essentially the result of some kind of negotiation, between the body, working according to its own agenda and wisdom, the breath, ditto, and something else, into which i have no real motivation to inquire beyond recognizing that it ain't me, babe, no no no, it ain't me, babe, it ain't me i'm looking for, babe. I know through hard experience that all i can do is fuck up that negotiation for the next sensory feedback if i stick my nose in. I think the rhythm of the whole loop from pulse to non-sensory negotiatory (or whatever the fuck is going on) process to the next sensory feedback the body sees fit to bestow is very much its own, highly variable, and so far i'm still alive despite all my best efforts, so even arguably evolutionarily adequate. 

Love you, Chris. Thank God Papa-ji is in Europe or whatever, time-zone-wise; i really do feel you guys cover the waterfront beautifully from either side.
T, modified 12 Months ago.

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 To be such a clueless, phenomenologically tongue-tied beginner being hand-led into the gentlest hint of a pre-beginner's approach to noting sensation is humbling in the best sense, of humility as the highest realism: it is what it is.

The first actual book I read on meditation and technique was MCBT2. For a year and a couple months, I had absolutely not a fucking clue what he was on about regarding noting. I was a breath man, though. I could do that. So I did pretty much to exclusion of all else. I would read discussion on here or read other books and be absolutely lost as to what the hell noting meant and how one does it. 

Anyway - after I had some kind of breathrough around 18 months of breathing, I was able to figure out what everyone was talking about in the absolute most basic sense. I am learning a lot about noting by reading your noting difficulty, rumination, and the direction/encouragement of your pals. 



Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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T:
 To be such a clueless, phenomenologically tongue-tied beginner being hand-led into the gentlest hint of a pre-beginner's approach to noting sensation is humbling in the best sense, of humility as the highest realism: it is what it is.

The first actual book I read on meditation and technique was MCBT2. For a year and a couple months, I had absolutely not a fucking clue what he was on about regarding noting. I was a breath man, though. I could do that. So I did pretty much to exclusion of all else. I would read discussion on here or read other books and be absolutely lost as to what the hell noting meant and how one does it. 

Anyway - after I had some kind of breathrough around 18 months of breathing, I was able to figure out what everyone was talking about in the absolute most basic sense. I am learning a lot about noting by reading your noting difficulty, rumination, and the direction/encouragement of your pals. 




I had practised nothing but what in retrospect was concentration stuff, shamatha, until i read MCTB1 in 2011, so most of what he was saying went wway way over my head. I did another round with MCBT in 2015, and believed at that time i might have a toe in the water of something in my practice that was vipassna-esque, at least. Then I found MCBT2, and came around again here, and i don't know shit about vipassna! emoticon So this is just fucking fantastic, as far as i'm concerned. I'm just trying to keep Chris Marti from worrying about me to shut the sesshin down, at this point, and to practice how he tells me, and to listen gratefully and fruitfully  to all the other people who are being so generous with help, support, advice, and sanity-watch babysitting shifts.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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This practice, I hope, is more like that walk you took with Hartley, not a marathon, and certainly not a sprint.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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0:11:04, and surprised by the end chime, which is sort of nice itself. The sensation is easy, sharp; and then immediate movement of attention, like water sloshing in a tub, through the abdomen, the neck, the temples, rebounding there, as if against a barrier, and from there i let go into a pulse directed toward the "last known location" of the sensation, which registers, and i'm off it again like it's a hot stove, moving attention, looking for a softer angle within that stays in touch without sharpening or losing the sensation, but leap to the head, the temple (right), and an imagination, like trying to complete a pattern, looking to pulse toward the last known location. Like riding a bucking bronco and my ass literally lifting out of the saddle at the top of the horse's leap, then feeling it again as we hit. Cowboy saddle ass, just trying to ride for my eight seconds. First glimpses of hell, fear, after the initial exhilarations, like "Uh-uh, it just gets worse from here," but the sensation itself is not full-on painful, just intense. There is a sense of frustration in that my language for the swirling is so vague, but i seem to have a complex habitual system of "moves", rotational, velocity, angle of momentum in a complex internal "physics vocabulalry," like theories about the sensation, between pulses of actually feeling it, and settling off little ripples or points of sensation in other places, belly, back, neck, temple, forehead, jaw, and i "do" what feels like a kind of judo move to turn the attention back to the objective pain in the ass, like backspin.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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0:11:05, again easy and steady with the interval. I had Chris's "Watch, just watch. Watching is all you have to do" toward the forefront this time through, and was picking up the sensate pulse and then seeing the switch to visual, and trying to hold both sensory modes in view/feel, the seeing high, in the head, like working in a malleable space with invisible but specific parameters, while attending to the pulse of recurrent sensation, the drifting of the sensation in its tactile medium, and groping to keep a hold on that, like a wrestler maneuvering to stay in touch with his opponent while feeling for his next move, until there's a collapse point, letting go of both seeing under head/eyestrain and feeling toward the sensation, letting it all go to shit and confusion for a beat, then finding the way to the next sensation pulse. And dancing, a sense of maneuvering, looking for the gentlest angle, and the literal shift of attention into vision, seeing, and the two senses seemingly in relation, before again a kind of crunch, a jar, a collapse, a dissonance, and around we go, searching for my ass with a ten-man working party, as the Marines say.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Last round of the day, 0:11:07. I do think there is an almost palpable preliminary process setting up every palpable sensation, and looking at the sensation is right now for me like sticking a wrench in those gears and knocking everything out of whack. The body sorts of dances with itself outside of my perception, and responds to my attention by offering a sensation. Whatever I'm doing right now in this watching the sensation evolve technique just feels really really off. Transience, dukha, anatta, not fucking problem. Whatever this shit is, though, is tough as nails. I am just lost in a hall of mirrors right now, sensations spooking out here and there, not a fucking clue what it might mean to watch, and how, and what, and from where. A radically new technique is very sink or swim, it seems. And right now i'm not even sure what swimming could mean. I'm going to take this ass to bed, and have a nightcap of Jeremiah from the Lamentations: "It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Thy faithfulness."

I sure hope His compassions will be new tomorrow morning.

I am so grateful for this cluster fuck of a manic sesshin. Thanks, Chris, thanks Papa Che, thanks Steph, for a lovely day. Great is y'all's faithfulness and compassion as well.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Okay, up and at 'em a little earlier than usual, but not alarmingly so. Asleep at 7 here last night and up at 1 a.m.is a solid six hours, for those with a clinical eye out for a manic spiral into increasing sleeplessness. This isn't that, this is simply the Great Doubt not letting me be in bed as much as I might like, an eagerness to just get to work. Also for the clinical notes, appetite is down, maybe half of my usual. I've lost as much as twenty pounds during past manias, and, as with sleep so far, this isn't that. There's no question i'm along the manic spectrum, energy-wise, mentally, speeded-up-ily, tough-to-sit-still-wise. 

The instruction for this practice right now, per Chris yesterday:
The goal of this exercise is to observe the arising and the passing away of the
object you're observing. So we're looking to see if we can identifiy the steps
in that process. There is a sensation first. You can feel that. It has an
obvious touching-sense to it, and an immediacy. It's tangible, right? But that's just
the start of a process. So, for example, how do you know what it is that's
touching? What is touching? How do you know? This doesn't come easy for people, so take your time... and watch. Just watch. Watching is all you have to do.

Jesus says (Mark 13:37): "And what I say unto you, Isay unto all: Watch."

And not I, but Chris in me.

First sit this morning, I just let my usual timer, set at 1:12:19, run, knowing I would be unlikely to do that, and in fact went just over half an hour before i bailed and had to pace and smoke. So I'll take that as my standard length for the time being, start at 30 minutes for each sit, add or subtract a second per sit according to if I make that long or jump up and go risk being taken into custody somewhere.

I've been using the most fundamental point of bodily tension in my basic in-a-chair meditation asana as my meditation seed object: right where my ass is ana chair, basically. My mantra-prayer is often trying to run in the background, years of habit there, like a piano timer clicking. I can't entirely ignore the breath at this point. The basic first take on the sacral sensation immediately leads to a kind of flurry of responses, like all this stuff has swung into motion and there has to be scurrying around at multiple levels to set up the next pulse of actual sensation, which may come as a development of the first, or in a somewhat "obvious" counter pang in the neck or shoulder and opposite side of the back, or in a shift to visual space where the body is doing whatever that shit is that it's doing to rearrange itself to offer the next pulse. In a way, it just feels like keeping a balance without aggravating anything more than necessary, like the body, left to its own devices, is perfectly willing to do these simple, efficient, invisible things and offer me an entirely bearable little orienting pang on demand. Pushing the pace, or a heavy attention on the throttle, fucks it up royally, as a lot of the time yesterday. The breath is always in play, sometimes as a caressing, soothing partner to the gyroscopic mechanics, sometimes out of sync somehow, in a way that sets up a chain of overcompensations, neck, jaw, brow, temple, base of neck, similar to the flailing of hands while losing the balance on a tightrope or something. Sometimes the dissonance resolves (in my previous technique, it often happened during the internal verbalization of the mantra, while my back was turned, so to speak), sometimes i just have to let it crash and reboot, sometimes that aspect is almost indistinguishable, "resolution"  and "crash" both being simply somehow finding the pulse of actual sensation anew and starting the whole ping pong game again with a new serve.

i feel like a fucking bull in a china shop with this alien technique from this pagan fucking vipassana maniac who does not appear to me to speak english in any form i can recognize at this point. It's really great fun, being quite this clueless, hopeless, and floundering. I'm lost in shit most people on DhO probably mastered and moved on from in a month or two, twenty years ago. Humility is not a virtue, it's a survival necessity. Possibly more important than breathing. I'd happily stop breathing at any given moment in this dry-ass dry-lightning storm of a fucked up technique meditation, and not resume, but without humility here I'd be obliterated before i needed to take another breath anyway.

love, you, Chris. emoticon




,
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

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second sit of the morning, aiming for 30 minutes, bailing at 20. The seed object, the fundamental sacral sensation at the pressure point of the asana, is easy to return to at any given moment, but every return sets off pulses and echoes and waves and whirlings, none sensate, but all "evident." If I push the pace in the least, meaning I try to pick up the sensation again before the other shit all runs its course, it inevitably leads to a catastrophic build of confusion tension, a chaos trying various somethings amplifying and nullifying all the other somethings, burning shoot along through my skull like a lit fast-fuse, zip, knife stab at the temple, eyes crossing or rolling up, little tornado-like whirlies, semi-visual, in the higher spaces, looking for room to roam as the actual space seems to shrink and finally collapse from all the dissonance. Then I curse Christ Marti, briefly but wholeheartedly, for sending me out with such explicit instructions into this fucking desert of a technique, this comfortless pinball game, this closed system snake fight. Then, a waft of attention, and the first sensate pulse is easy. Sometimes I really do just let that shit all play, unable to even consider any of the questions of deeper examination---
how do you know what it is that's touching? What is touching what? How do you know?

--- because I don't know shit, Chris, amigo. And when i try to know shit like that, at a higher rate than what is easy in balance, it hurts like fuck. I feel like any sensation takes about 2 seconds to "set up" without pain or wacked out pyrotechnic side effects. I know Daniel says 40 notings per second is possible ("I don't know where people get billions of notings per second, he adds, which just fucking cracks me up, because 40 and billions are indistinguishable to me). I believe him. I would believe pretty much any fucking wacked out number you told me.  I know Papa Che works at 5-10 notings per second, which appears to be an easy loping pace for him, i've literally seen and heard him do it. How he does that without his entire psychosomatic system seizing up and spasming is just fucking beyond me.
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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because I don't know shit, Chris, amigo. And when i try to know shit like that, at a higher rate than what is easy in balance, it hurts like fuck. I feel like any sensation takes about 2 seconds to "set up" without pain or wacked out pyrotechnic side effects. I know Daniel says 40 notings per second is possible ("I don't know where people get billions of notings per second, he adds, which just fucking cracks me up, because 40 and billions are indistinguishable to me). I believe him. I would believe pretty much any fucking wacked out number you told me.  I know Papa Che works at 5-10 notings per second, which appears to be an easy loping pace for him, i've literally seen and heard him do it. How he does that without his entire psychosomatic system seizing up and spasming is just fucking beyond me.

This is normal stuff, Tim. As difficult as this may be, for all of us, please try not to overthink this. Who cares how fast someone else can note stuff? That's not even close to being important and that's not your goal. Your goal is just to observe, as best you can, that one object.

I'm worried this is going to cause frustration and other sorts of problems. If at any time you feel that it is, STOP. Send me a message. I do not want bad shit to happen to you or anyone.


Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
because I don't know shit, Chris, amigo. And when i try to know shit like that, at a higher rate than what is easy in balance, it hurts like fuck. I feel like any sensation takes about 2 seconds to "set up" without pain or wacked out pyrotechnic side effects. I know Daniel says 40 notings per second is possible ("I don't know where people get billions of notings per second, he adds, which just fucking cracks me up, because 40 and billions are indistinguishable to me). I believe him. I would believe pretty much any fucking wacked out number you told me.  I know Papa Che works at 5-10 notings per second, which appears to be an easy loping pace for him, i've literally seen and heard him do it. How he does that without his entire psychosomatic system seizing up and spasming is just fucking beyond me.

This is normal stuff, Tim. As difficult as this may be, for all of us, please try not to overthink this. Who cares how fast someone else can note stuff? That's not even close to being important and that's not your goal. Your goal is just to observe, as best you can, that one object.

I'm worried this is going to cause frustration and other sorts of problems. If at any time you feel that it is, STOP. Send me a message. I do not want bad shit to happen to you or anyone.



emoticon
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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What would we call that particular smiley? Kissy-face?
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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"Smooch."
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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Ah, that's it! Thank you.

You may imagine how this goes - first, there is this sense perception, and then some kind of processing happens "in there," and then an attempt at defining and naming occurs.

emoticon
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:


You may imagine how this goes - first, there is this sense perception, and then some kind of processing happens "in there," and then an attempt at defining and naming occurs.

emoticon

As in, "Shit, man, I know you're manic, and I want to be supportive, but don't kiss me again until you've bathed and shaved"?

emoticon

p.s. i hope Papa-ji spots you using that fucking smiley-face. emoticon
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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We're all maniacs. Some of us are more honest about it than others.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Chris Marti:
We're all maniacs. Some of us are more honest about it than others.


And some of us just spout any damn shit that comes into their warped minds.

emoticon
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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8th sit, 0:10:07. Much easier with the technique now. The sacral pang sensation that begins can be "There is sharp pang" or "There is texture like a heavy rope" or "There is a gentle lighting-up, like something caused by wind."

Is there a way of saying, in this vein, "There is space opening, up into the out and right" or "there is space opening, down across the chest and into the belly?" That is distinct enough to note.

Also, there is a dialogue of sorts that goes sort of "There is pang" . . . "There is seeing" . . . "there is lighter pang" . . . "there is seeing." The sits right now may not have time, but in the past, along this dialogue's lines, there have been synesthetic mergers deeper in, where the "seeing" and the "feeling" were synched enough that noting one was as good as noting the other, usually with seeing covering both somehow.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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9th sit, 0:05:09. Popped out early, overexcited about vocabulary. I am intent on establishing a few baby talk phenomenological terms as part of job one here. "There is sensation here" begins, often with a characterizing word, sharp, shooting, dull, fiery, gentle. "There is seeing" is an attention bounce (thank you Steph S) from feeling to seeing, and i could probably be more attentive to lights and colors, against all my John of the Cross training to ignore that shit. 

The ones I'd like to know whether they are legit, viable vocabulary are:

"There is space opening (usually with direction)" or "There is a squeeze on space (short of palpability, but often followed closely by a sensation 180 degrees across, as in "There is a squeeze on space in the upper right head" . . . There is tightness behind the left lower ribs")

"There is movement," sometimes obviously breath, somtimes obviously thought or mind, but often unattributable, in my state of the art discernment, yet, uh, notable.

I'm working on the primer glossary here.

Going to take a walk now, on a gorgeous cool spring day with the azaleas in full bloom here. 
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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10th sit, 0:10:07. Still working on what is sensation, what is "noticable," what is "namable". A lot of it has to do simply with the muscular-skeletal network's gives and takes--- one kind of what i called "movement" in the last post this time seemed to be clearly an awareness of a muscle or set of muscles relaxing, in prelude to a contraction that would cause the next sensation--- attention, following the movement, gets faked out, because the sensation generation from that relaxing movement contracting again is itself somewhere else entirely, where the contraction brings something to tension, so attention feels a "discontinuity," like "Hey, why are 'movement' and sensation out of whack?" They're not, of course, in this simple case: there is a false expectation, a hidden dukha-generating assumption resisting the simpler reality. Attention taken lightly enough is entirely capable of registering both the preliminary "movement" of impalpable relaxation, and the not entirely predictable sensation arising from the subsequent contraction, with getting its panties in a bunch or hollering at its teacher.

"Space opening" still sort of impenetrable, sometimes it seems it might just be breath, or imagination, or something false somewhere in the mind that needs a literal sense of space for some reason. All speculative; but the thing i could note and name as "space opening" is distinct, and is not sensate, though a lot of sensate effects, especially above the neck, tend to crop up somewhere along its perimeter as it "moves."

My short walked turn long, earlier, as I got waylaid by Hartley, the four-year-daughter of the musician down the street, who was at loose ends while her dad tried to get his taxes done. Four year olds tend to see a slightly manic me as wonderful, and we made the most of it, wandering here and there and doing this and that.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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sit 11, 0:05:00. One problem with the manic regime presently active is the inability to sit still with anything that has a WHIFF of insight.

So i leaped up at recognizing that there is a whole category of head sensations, movements, space-generation and space-contraction, that essentially has nothing to do with the basic below-the-neck meditation pain in the ass. The head shit is on its own circuit a lot of the time, and a lot of the gymnastic's and contortions can sort of be reasonably hypothesized as the attempts of an invisible Watcher to make himself feel comfortable and secure. The guy apparently needs his space. He is always moving, looking for a workable angle on the action below. He likes to chart out trajectories, put spin on stuff, juggle. He does math, the Newtonian physics of intention pulses, and he appears to believe he has a handle on quantum gravity, mathematically at least. He is literally a pain in the skull, and above the eyes, and behind the eyes. A lot of the fireworks are him dancing as fast as he can to get traction on some solid ground again after he has finally walked out over the cliff and is hanging there in the air like Wile E. Coyote.

All speculative, of course. This could actually be him typing. He is one sly motherfucker, i'll give him that.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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April 14, 2020. sit 12.  0:10:07

Yeah, a lot of this head tension is a ghost trying to keep himself comfy and continuous, literally pulling the strings of muscle and nerve, literally trying to stay above it all. There is a separate dynamic, its own loop, in which all the sensation are literally body english trying to enforce some kind of control over what the body below the neck does perfectly well all by itself. The translation resources are still paltry here, given that my noting vocabulary consists right now of two grunts and a kind of hoot. There is GRUNT 1. . . There is hoot . . . There is grunt 2! . . . But in my previous techniques, i could regularlysee this double dynamic going on, below the neck and above, crudely put, and thought of it as something in my mind systematically painting itself into a corner, through body english that was first contradictory, then painfully out of sync, and finally flat out incompatible with what the body had to get done to do its job. At that point, if i watched it all the way through the panic of imminent discontinuity, you could feel it dissolve, like something built up as apocalyptic turned out to be a dud firecracker, less than that, an exhausted whim: gone, and the breath and body went on about their business. Not a lot of noting language in that yet.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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April 14, 2020, sit 13.  0:10:08
Sort of alert to the above the neck/below dynamics this time, just looking for a fight. I found myself actually, paradoxically--- in that it buys into the Control Center's fantasy--- trying to keep the attention below the neck, then realized i had done that a thousand times over the years, from various angles, and that the best way through it is to let the Control Center's dynamic run its parallel, and increasingly unharmonic course, until the dead end somewhere high up in the skull, no more space to create, no more movement possible without what the Control Center's presumption is would be GREAT BODILY PAIN. He's all in, all dressed up in the emperor's best new clothes and nowhere to go, and, if you just give it a real moment of fearless attention, "risking" GREAT BODILY PAIN OR WORSE, the body finds a completely surprising spontaneous solution to the apparent Gordian knot of cross tensions, generally painlessly, a creative dissolving of the whole hyped-up "bind," and the controller vanishes. It's actually one of the most reconizable doors to deeper meditation for me, those mini-dissolutions when the Controller's continuity hopes fail, power fanasties are exposed as empty, and gate gate paragate poof.

uh, practice notes, for Chris and Papa-ji: There is Grunt 2 . . . There is pain in the ass . . . there is pain in the neck . . . There is hoot . . . There is Grunt 1. My vocabulary of remedial pre-noting growing by leaps and, uh, grunts.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

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You are certainly doing it! Keep at it during the 10 minutes sits and make sure to give your self an attaboy after the session and really enjoy it emoticon (dunno, a cig, a walk, a good laugh, salty liquorice (Danish ones are best) )

I managed to upload this short vid thats made for you (took it 1h30min to upload for some reason) I tried to demo the "There is" method which utilised naivite-like wonder and curiosity and is done in no hurry AT ALL. I hope its of some benefit and if not also good.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bhw0S-yWCjA

Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Papa Che Dusko:


I managed to upload this short vid thats made for you (took it 1h30min to upload for some reason) I tried to demo the "There is" method which utilised naivite-like wonder and curiosity and is done in no hurry AT ALL. I hope its of some benefit and if not also good.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bhw0S-yWCjA


April 14, 2020. sit 14. 0:06:31 (Papa Che guided "There is" noting)

Wowowoowow. Wow. Thank you, Papaji.

The pace is exquisite, and is very rich for me. I was sort of hypotized, i think, to a degree---swallowed immediately when you noted it, e.g., nd even with me eyes closed i saw the window. I was actually sitting with my hands in precisely the same position as yours (old zen thing, maybe? some mudra somewhere, but also, very close the loopish for me), same hand on top and bottom, same thumbs together, no rosary, which i now realize was Chris's original suggestion, the actually meeting of two fingers. And i felt it, easily, half a beat behind you all the way at that truly generous and exquisite pace.

The porn lick goes without saying as the greatest moment of my life, of course.

I will probably use this again and again for a while, at points, because it is not just a master class in pace and approach and attitude, it gives me a broader working vocabulary of the noticeable and the namable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bhw0S-yWCjA

and loved the personal touch, i almost burst into tears, you [name-calling and ad hominem attack deleted as per DhO rules].

emoticon

You are certainly doing it! Keep at it during the 10 minutes sits and make sure to give your self an attaboy after the session and really enjoy it

emoticon

(dunno, a cig, a walk, a good laugh, salty liquorice (Danish ones are best) )



Will work ass off for cigs. emoticon
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

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Good man Tim! Im glad this is of benefit. By the end of your journey to SE we might have a few more such vids that we could compile into a meditation movie and get filthy rich by sellling them  emoticon emoticon
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

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So i leaped up at recognizing that there is a whole category of head sensations, movements, space-generation and space-contraction, that essentially has nothing to do with the basic below-the-neck meditation pain in the ass. The head shit is on its own circuit a lot of the time, and a lot of the gymnastic's and contortions can sort of be reasonably hypothesized as the attempts of an invisible Watcher to make himself feel comfortable and secure. The guy apparently needs his space. He is always moving, looking for a workable angle on the action below. He likes to chart out trajectories, put spin on stuff, juggle. He does math, the Newtonian physics of intention pulses, and he appears to believe he has a handle on quantum gravity, mathematically at least. He is literally a pain in the skull, and above the eyes, and behind the eyes. A lot of the fireworks are him dancing as fast as he can to get traction on some solid ground again after he has finally walked out over the cliff and is hanging there in the air like Wile E. Coyote.

Badda Bing!

Recognition = realization.


Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Badda Bing!

emoticon

Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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April 14, 2020. Sit 15. 0:10:09

duller, sort of mercifully, after a light supper. Late day sesshin ass-ache easy to find. There is ass-ache. . . . There is dull ass-ache. . . . There is a mad controlling ghost with his own agenda wreaking havoc in my temples, jaw, and neck, and high on my skull. . . . There is ass-ache. . . 

I'm actually tired, after waking at around 1 a.m. this morning, sleepy-tired, and that is good as gold right now. Sleep during high energy periods is wonderful, and i take it where i find it.

Thanks, to all. Chris, you've got guts and nerve, thanks for riding it out this far. Papa-ji, fuck you, and the horse you rode in on. emoticon
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

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emoticon fuck you too Tim! Sweet dreams you noble warrior! 
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 12 Months ago.

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When I was a little kid, my manic aunt was the only one adult capable of playing along with my magickal thinking. I liked that. She was annoying when she insisted on tying together my socks, though. 

So, how does this work for you? Do you stay aware of a manic phase coming up until you are suddenly not aware anymore? Or do you stay aware throughout the development? Do you have medicines that can stop it? If so, are you taking them? Do you have that little voice that tells you that you really should take the medicines now and another voice that says that you can wait just a liiiiittle bit longer because this is the nice part? If so, which voice usually turns out to be right?
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
When I was a little kid, my manic aunt was the only one adult capable of playing along with my magickal thinking. I liked that. She was annoying when she insisted on tying together my socks, though. 


Exactly. And I NEVER tie kids' socks together.


So, how does this work for you? Do you stay aware of a manic phase coming up until you are suddenly not aware anymore? Or do you stay aware throughout the development?


No, I'm aware of it, for the most part, all the way throughout the development. The problem is partly that it is so fascinatingly lucid and i have to share every little insight with everyone, in every nuance, with footnotes. The problem also partly is, of course, that sometimes, for the best of my own very good reasons and with utter lucidity inside of whatever movie i am in at the moment, i may take off all my clothes and walk down the middle of the highway playing chicken with approaching semis. I usually even remember the context, could tell you my whole chain of reasoning from whatever mad premise i began it with--- i am working along the Underground Railroad, I am one of the last survivors of a sun-scorched humanity sixty thousand years in the future, i am black, I am St. Francis--- even long afterward, but that is sort of useless in general and is usually even too edgy for stand-up comedy. I am sort of bulletproof and fearless, and do the reductio ad absurdum on every whacked out notion that sticks for a while.

Do you have medicines that can stop it? If so, are you taking them?

No, I am not on, nor does my psychiatrist think I need, any antipsychotics. I do take an antidepressant, which actually helps when most people are concerned, because their actual understanding is that drugs are the magic wand that, once waved, takes everybody off the hook. So when they ask if i'm taking my drugs, which have no effect whatsoever, either prophylactically and actively anti-psychotically, on mania, i just say Yes, religiously, and they nod, pleased that everything is covered by professionals and all's well. The drugs that can stop it--- Haldol, is the elephant-gun state of the art, i guess--- are usually administered by professionals upon my intake, while four other professionals hold me down.

It's been almost five years since my last crack-up and hospitalization, which was triggered in part by some ill-advised dope-smoking with a buddy, and in part by the traumatic end of a fifteen year relationship. Now I'm dope-free, and woman-less. I had a no nonsense red alert mania two years ago anyway, and no one here in my neighborhood ever knew it. I've actually gotten pretty good at it, by the standards of such a peculiar art, good and getting better all the time at not quite crossing the lines that by lucid maniac standards are TOTALLY ABSTRACT AND MAKE NO SENSE WHATSOEVER (you may be able to relate, on the lines stuff, from your own angle): when manic, i play it as scrupulously as possible by the book. Except here, apparently. Here I'm just a big loud nut job, more often than not. I rely on the jikijitsu, honestly, poor overworked guy.


Do you have that little voice that tells you that you really should take the medicines now and another voice that says that you can wait just a liiiiittle bit longer because this is the nice part? If so, which voice usually turns out to be right?

As I said, by the time medicines are on the table, it's way too late. I've hashed this through with my psychiatrist, during the height of the last real Big One. I had the whole psych staff on red alert, I was maxing out both their little depression-scale questionaires and their mania-scale questions, like 28 points out of 30 kind of stuff, when they lock you up somewhere around 18. I found this article in a psych journal and made copies for my doc--- it included a flow chart mapping out all the routes of various paths through severe mental illness. One of the routes, which i was insisting on at that point, was not shutting it down through medication, and the key point in that flow chart path was "Am I willing to accept the consequences of going unmedicated?" I said yes. Short of an involuntary hospitalization, there was nothing else he could do but give me the emergency number, the suicide hotline number, etc. It's the same for getting out, once they're locked you up for the mandatory interval: if you can convince a judge that you are not a danger to yourself or others, by law he has to release even if it is Against Medical Advice. I have no suicide attempts in my record, and have never harmed anyone during even the most outrageous episodes, never even came close, it was never an issue. And as it worked out, I was right, during that last big one, and able to walk the tightrope through without a fall, and without most people i knew ever realizing i was that crazed at all.


I am long long past any glamoriztion of the high of it, or any temptation to milk it for all it's worth and enjoy the right. I am pretty much across the board OCD-level-scrupulous on playing every interaction by the book until i'm sure of the person's sense of humor. I think I've got a pretty good view on it, as realistic as I can be and always erring toward the conservative, and the fear of God in me big time. Except for the occasional moderately temperatured exchange on certain internet forums, you really couldn't tell I AM EXPERIENCING A PERIOD OF UNNERVINGLY HIGH ENERGY.

Thank you for your interest. I do feel a real fellowship with you in some many ways. And people definitely treat me differently once they know I'm bipolar. It cramps my comedy style sometimes even when i'm technically Totally Fucking Depressed.

agnostic, modified 12 Months ago.

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Tim Farrington:

No, I'm aware of it, for the most part, all the way throughout the development. The problem is partly that it is so fascinatingly lucid and i have to share every little insight with everyone, in every nuance, with footnotes. The problem also partly is, of course, that sometimes, for the best of my own very good reasons and with utter lucidity inside of whatever movie i am in at the moment, i may take off all my clothes and walk down the middle of the highway playing chicken with approaching semis. I usually even remember the context, could tell you my whole chain of reasoning from whatever mad premise i began it with--- i am working along the Underground Railroad, I am one of the last survivors of a sun-scorched humanity sixty thousand years in the future, i am black, I am St. Francis--- even long afterward, but that is sort of useless in general and is usually even too edgy for stand-up comedy.


Hey Mate!

I'm gonna go out on a limb here (Chris/Daniel please don't sue me) and say that nothing is too edgy for your log here on DhO (assuming you're not attacking anyone and you're following the 4th precept of course).

So I say go for it and keep typing until your fingers are bleeding if that's what you want to do. I'm appreciating the craziness much more than any semi driver will, even if I can't see you naked in my headlights.

Oh and I knew you were the black St Francis all along. Seriously, who do you think you were kidding with that photo on Amazon? You're going to have to do better than that!

Cheers
socks
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

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agnostic:

Hey Mate!

Oh and I knew you were the black St Francis all along. Seriously, who do you think you were kidding with that photo on Amazon? You're going to have to do better than that!

Cheers

socks



Busted. Thanks for outing me, mate. emoticon
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 5301 Join Date: 12/8/18 Recent Posts
Thankyou for sharing! It sounds like I don't need to worry. You are very welcome to share every footnote with me, if you like. I find it interesting and I won't judge. I appreciate when people have things to say about life that I haven't already thought about myself, and as obnoxious as that sounds, it is actually not very common. 

I have a friend who built a very unique house while being manic and then sold it for a fortune when he was back to consensual reality and found the house a bit too extravagante for his taste, so I know that it is possible to navigate mania skillfully. I'm not easily shocked (I actually have quite a lot of friends who like to go around naked without being manic), but please stay away from the highway. I think the world would be rather boring without you in it. 

I can understand why you are reluctant with regard to haldol, even without glamorizing the high (sounds great that you are past that). I probably would be too. I have never been clinically manic, so that has never been on the agenda for me, thankfully. I can easily tap into other people's hypomania empathically, and I have had reoccurring depressions, so I have been wondering whether I have some form of bipolar variant too (it runs in the family, after all), but after reading about the side effects of medications, I decided to shut up about it and stick to the antidepressants. That has worked for such a long time now, and through so many traumas, that I'm not worried anymore. 

Yes, I can relate. Those lines really make no sense. People... I mean, they believe in boxes. Boxes that you can think outside of if lucky. There are no fucking boxes, for cryin' out loud. 

I already commented on the practice in my message. Oh well. I'll be following your reports. 

I feel a fellowship too. Once again, people... It must be tough for them, living with all that fear. 
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Chris Marti, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 3846 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
Still working on what is sensation, what is "noticable," what is "namable". A lot of it has to do simply with the muscular-skeletal network's gives and takes--- one kind of what i called "movement" in the last post this time seemed to be clearly an awareness of a muscle or set of muscles relaxing, in prelude to a contraction that would cause the next sensation--- attention, following the movement, gets faked out, because the sensation generation from that relaxing movement contracting again is itself somewhere else entirely, where the contraction brings something to tension, so attention feels a "discontinuity," like "Hey, why are 'movement' and sensation out of whack?" They're not, of course, in this simple case: there is a false expectation, a hidden dukha-generating assumption resisting the simpler reality. Attention taken lightly enough is entirely capable of registering both the preliminary "movement" of impalpable relaxation, and the not entirely predictable sensation arising from the subsequent contraction, with getting its panties in a bunch or hollering at its teacher.

Great reporting!
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 1660 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
Chris Marti:
Ah, that's it! Thank you.

You may imagine how this goes - first, there is this sense perception, and then some kind of processing happens "in there," and then an attempt at defining and naming occurs.

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Ho ho ho whoa emoticon this is some hardcore SatiPa emoticon Yes agreed but I think this even to me is sometime not as clear depending on the stage and other psychological factors etc. 

I think for Tim might be good to ONLY (for now) make contact with the Object "there is Touch" "there is Warmth" "there is tingling" etc ... Just move on from one attention mark to the next. Insight will hit when ready.

If he comes to the point where such basic noting goes on once every second, then all you mentioned above will be seen easier. 
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 1660 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
Have you ever tried to use the phrase "There is" ? 

Like when touching fingers touch the "There is touch", in case there is some tingling there "There is tingling vibration" There is thinking, There is seeing (if you are looking at the fingers). 

"There is" slows down the need to speed note and is more of a curious What is there? There iiiiiis ... pain (comprehending it's the ars and noticing unpleasant feel). 

I do agree with Chris to Stop if stuff is getting too roller coaster like. 

I suffered from Combat PTSD for decades and know how such shit can cause manic and depressive episodes. 

The one thing that really helped my manic paranoia was Ki-breathing as practiced by Aikido practitioners. That Paranoia (Fear) was so egging debilitating. I would on constant lookout in the house, in the park when going for walks, in the supermarket (here I would go into full panic attacks). 

I look at Ki-breathing as the Shamatha Aloud emoticon as it's very loud and one can hear it really well as well as feeling the sensations in the throat. 

After 6 months of this practice 30 min a day my decades long paranoia was no more. Sure mild paranoia and fear was still there but not in that manic way. 

If you ever consider doing this I can demo it for you via video. Btw, this was 1 year before I started Buddhist meditation. I doubt I would be able to handle that much paranoia in my Shamatha or Noting practice. 

Have a ponder. You know yourself better than we do. You know what and how much you can handle. 
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
Papa Che Dusko:
Have you ever tried to use the phrase "There is" ? 

Like when touching fingers touch the "There is touch", in case there is some tingling there "There is tingling vibration" There is thinking, There is seeing (if you are looking at the fingers). 

"There is" slows down the need to speed note and is more of a curious What is there? There iiiiiis ... pain (comprehending it's the ars and noticing unpleasant feel). 


i like that. I have no problem with the language, which I am determined to learn and use, and the basic technique of noting. You've had me right pretty much from the get-go, that my troubles come largely in pace, and pushing too hard. "There is" fire, when i push for speed.


I do agree with Chris to Stop if stuff is getting too roller coaster like. 

I agree, although my roller coaster range, at this point in my evolution, is pretty broad, and the real issue seems to be not scaring the shit out of my fellow riders. I mean, I fucking hate being locked up. I will do everything in my power to not have that happen, and if it does, oops, my bad, and a six-month period in hell to digest the latest lessons. But I sort of trust my gut at this point. This session, under Chris and you? Are you kidding me? I've been waiting for this my whole life.


I suffered from Combat PTSD for decades and know how such shit can cause manic and depressive episodes. 

I grew up a Marine brat, son of a career officer vet of Korea and Vietnam. He was cold-blooded as fuck about it all, and very very funny, but would still hit the ground at an unexpected firework going off. I saw an old buddy of his yank his chain once by hollering "Incoming!" and Dad actually started to go down, then caught himself and sort of looked at the guy as old combat veterans ca, like, "I love you, my brother, but do that again and I will fucking kill you."

The one thing that really helped my manic paranoia was Ki-breathing as practiced by Aikido practitioners. That Paranoia (Fear) was so egging debilitating. I would on constant lookout in the house, in the park when going for walks, in the supermarket (here I would go into full panic attacks).

After 6 months of this practice 30 min a day my decades long paranoia was no more. Sure mild paranoia and fear was still there but not in that manic way. 

If you ever consider doing this I can demo it for you via video. Btw, this was 1 year before I started Buddhist meditation. I doubt I would be able to handle that much paranoia in my Shamatha or Noting practice. 

I think whatever the fuck it is I've been doing has served a similar purpose, in bringing me in range of this session. I'm always going to be working AMA, meditatively. I trust you and Chris, and I hope you guys will be able to trust me. I'll shut it down on a moment's notice from either of you, at any point.

Have a ponder. You know yourself better than we do. You know what and how much you can handle. 


well, i don't want to scare anyone, but yeah, I do know myself better, and what and how much i can handle. I will try not to scare the shit out of you guys, or anyone else, but some lines I am unable to find until i've already crossed them. It's how a guy like me learns, if he survives. And i've survived long enough to find myself in the company of the wise, so i'm doing something right, with my learning curve. emoticon

agnostic, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 1490 Join Date: 2/26/19 Recent Posts
Tim Farrington:


some lines I am unable to find until i've already crossed them. It's how a guy like me learns, if he survives.


I think that's true of most of us.
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
agnostic:
Tim Farrington:


some lines I am unable to find until i've already crossed them. It's how a guy like me learns, if he survives.


I think that's true of most of us.Yeah, but sometimes I am several miles past the line by the time the feedback registers. Feel free to keep an eye on me and give the occasional considered head's up, i would truly appreciate it.
agnostic, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 1490 Join Date: 2/26/19 Recent Posts
Tim Farrington:
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I always thought of that as the lipstick on a pig face.

Good work Tim. I'm impressed that you can keep up with it all. Remember, you are the only expert on your experience that matters!
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
agnostic:
Tim Farrington:
emoticon

I always thought of that as the lipstick on a pig face.

Good work Tim. I'm impressed that you can keep up with it all. Remember, you are the only expert on your experience that matters!
emoticon.

Thanks, mate. I'm glad found your way to this fiasco in the alleyway behind the Bar of Last Resort. 
Tim Farrington, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 2437 Join Date: 6/13/11 Recent Posts
Last sit, 0:11:01. I'm still being conservative on upping the time. Aware of the pressure, pressure, pressure I'm still exrting to come back to the thread every time, sometimes easing into texture, texture, texture, then flipping again. Feeling like the technique right now is the prow of a ship slicing through an ocean of gratitude (and pressure, pressure, texture, texture). There's so much to be said for the intangibles of the gift of a logos of technique from a master, it simplifies faith itself down to the iteration of the shub to the object. Feels very information theory-ish, as the manic mind somersaults, 1, 1, 1, waves of 0, 1, waves of 0, 1. May be encoding the universe, if i could transcribe it. That kind of shit. Oh, right, pressure, pressure, texture.

Deep deep gratutude during my walking break after this sit (aka, smoke break). Laughing at steering into the mania by using mania to power sesshin. There is true sobriety in the pulse of this practice right now.

Meanwhile, on my actual walk earlier, my neighbor, who was feeding the fish in our tiny common pool here, came up as I walked by and gave me two Washington Senators caps, because he's cleaning out his closet and had a million. I passed for sane during the exchange, always to the good. Extra points because he's a Trump guy, and we've both betrayed our news sources lately, talking about the pandemic, and we are both amused at not crashing and burning over any of the obvious things. He and his wife actually gave me a ride to the grocery store a few days ago, just swung by me at the bus stop like a magic carpet. I told him I could give him my bus fare (it's actually free right now, to keep the drivers from close contact during the lockdown) and he told me i couldn't afford his actual cab rate and left it at that. Gotta love the guy, and his wife, who has decided she doesn't give a shit what she dies of, she just ain't frettin'.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 12 Months ago.

RE: Equanimity? Help, please, thanks.

Posts: 1660 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
What other thread ? You have resurrected at least a dozen of threads emoticon I'm giving up on following them all. I have a goldfish memory!