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Moment of heightened sensitivity...?

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Moment of heightened sensitivity...?
Answer
6/9/11 3:13 PM
Hey everyone,

I'm not sure if this is even significant enough to post about, but I guess that's precisely why I'm posting it--to see if this particular experience is just one of the many types of weird things that happens during meditation that I should just ignore, if it was just a self-induced product of my imagination, or if it's a sign of somethingerother that I should try to induce or at least welcome if it happens again.

So I hadn't meditated much for a few weeks, and last night, about ten minutes into vipassana meditation, I had this peculiar heightened feeling of increased sensitivity to all stimuli (I think?) or that I was zooming towards something, which made me a bit afraid/apprehensive, as if Something was about to Happen--which was similar to my reaction to entering the first samatha jhana (about a year ago) (i.e. "what the heck is happening??). I tried to let go of being afraid and just let it (whatever it was) happen as I continued focusing on it. The heightened feelings intensified a bit more, but diminished after a minute or so.

...the heck?! It definitely didn't feel like any of the levels of samatha jhana I'm familiar with (1-8).

Thanks for any ideas. emoticon

RE: Moment of heightened sensitivity...?
Answer
6/9/11 4:06 PM as a reply to Morgan Taylor.
My experience is that the great majority of "feels like something (big) is about to happen" are just that (feels like) and nothing more.

Every single one of my greatest perceptual shifts happened with a very calm mind, and took me by surprise (didn't feel like something big was about to happen at all).

However, the excitement about these imagined possibilities, particularly the fear, is very worthwhile investigating. It's always a hollow threat... unless one buys into it, believes in it, and thus makes it real. The imagined future is just a distraction from the present.

RE: Moment of heightened sensitivity...?
Answer
6/9/11 4:26 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:
My experience is that the great majority of "feels like something (big) is about to happen" are just that (feels like) and nothing more.

and they also tend to show up in A&P or Equanimity, so it could be a good marker of that territory

RE: Moment of heightened sensitivity...?
Answer
6/9/11 4:40 PM as a reply to Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem.
Thanks for your perspectives. emoticon

Just to provide some context that may assist with diagnosis, I haven't crossed A&P yet.

RE: Moment of heightened sensitivity...?
Answer
6/9/11 5:15 PM as a reply to Morgan Taylor.
Morgan Taylor:
Thanks for your perspectives. emoticon

Just to provide some context that may assist with diagnosis, I haven't crossed A&P yet.


how do ya know? =P

could be many things. might be cause+effect, you start noticing how stuff zooms around with attention there. or maybe 3 chars as you saw the unsatisfactoriness of things moving in ways you don't want. or maybe getting into A&P cause of the heightened perceptual awareness. anyway stuff like this will happen more+more often as you go along.

RE: Moment of heightened sensitivity...?
Answer
6/9/11 7:03 PM as a reply to Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem.
Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem:
how do ya know? =P


Well, I've never experienced the flashing lights or anything else that seems to be associated with it...

Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem:
could be many things. might be cause+effect, you start noticing how stuff zooms around with attention there. or maybe 3 chars as you saw the unsatisfactoriness of things moving in ways you don't want. or maybe getting into A&P cause of the heightened perceptual awareness. anyway stuff like this will happen more+more often as you go along.


Hm, I dunno. emoticon But at least it sounds like I'm on the right track. I will say that this (and similar) experiences make me feel that mindfulness and "staying in the moment" are a lot cooler and more hard-core (so to speak ;) ) than the usual conventional ways of talking about such things.

RE: Moment of heightened sensitivity...?
Answer
6/10/11 1:47 AM as a reply to Morgan Taylor.
Bruno Loff:
Morgan Taylor:

So I hadn't meditated much for a few weeks, and last night, about ten minutes into vipassana meditation, I had this peculiar heightened feeling of increased sensitivity to all stimuli (I think?) or that I was zooming towards something, which made me a bit afraid/apprehensive, as if Something was about to Happen--which was similar to my reaction to entering the first samatha jhana (about a year ago) (i.e. "what the heck is happening??).... The heightened feelings intensified a bit more, but diminished after a minute or so.

My experience is that the great majority of "feels like something (big) is about to happen" are just that (feels like) and nothing more.

Every single one of my greatest perceptual shifts happened with a very calm mind, and took me by surprise (didn't feel like something big was about to happen at all).

...It's always a hollow threat... unless one buys into it, believes in it, and thus makes it real.

Bruno has it right. It's all just papanca ("prolific conceptualization" as in concepts, reckonings, designations or linguistic conventions characterized by the prolific conceptualization of the mind).

A good book to read about this phenomenon is Bhikkhu Nanananda's Concept and Reality in Early Buddhist Thought. An extremely insightful read.

RE: Moment of heightened sensitivity...?
Answer
6/20/11 4:36 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:
My experience is that the great majority of "feels like something (big) is about to happen" are just that (feels like) and nothing more.


In MCTB Daniel actually uses the phrase "the feeling that something big is about to happen" as indicative of the early stages of A&P.

I'm now fairly certain that I crossed the A&P. I failed to mention in my original post that I felt like I was levitating, which I just found in Progress of Insight: "he feels as if the whole body had risen up and remained in the air without touching the ground".

Then, a couple nights ago when I experienced a few moments of a thin flailing stream of white light across my field of vision, which was followed the next day by fear and feelings of dissolution (aka Dark Night). Reality was pretty overwhelming for a little while, but then, after some practice, I feel like I settled into Equanimity.

Another reason I'm pretty certain this is where I am is that I can relate to everything in Daniel's book up to this point, but everything from Fruition on sounds like gobbledygook to me (and, likewise, prior to getting to this point, everything in A&P and Dark Night sounded like gobbledygook).

If this was, in fact, A&P, I'm disappointed that it wasn't more spectacular, but oh well, maybe next time.

[I should add that I know it doesn't really matter whether I'm at this stage or not--that the point is to continue meditating. Heck, there are aspects of the "Mind and Body" stage I didn't particularly relate to, and if further meditation brings me to that point, making me realize I was an idiot for thinking I was in Equanimity, then so be it. Either way, I will be progressing.]