Dream/Meditation Experiences

David Lee Angstead, modified 10 Years ago.

Dream/Meditation Experiences

Posts: 3 Join Date: 7/1/11 Recent Posts
Hello there,
I just joined TDO last night,and figured this was the best place to ask some questions about my practice that no one has yet come to explain.

First off let me explain my Practice history-

I'm 26,I started meditating in the Kadampa (NKT) Tradition 6 years ago,and have since left (as of Jan.2010)
I undertook many empowerment,short retreats,and right before I left, I moved to England and lived in their loose Monastic Community for 3 months-while I was there I underwent Vajrayana Initiation and so forth.
After the 3 month visit, I went on a Vajrayana (vajrayogini) retreat with very little "success" and much anxiety.
When I returned I stepped away from this path due in part by the politics of the tradition,but mainly because the practices in the Vajrayana were so "out there" and "complicated and colorful" I didn't feel it was relevant.


Anyhow,since then I've been practicing Shikantaza and as of recently I've been attempting "nothing" practice as I feel my real interest lies in the Theravada Tradition.

Now, for my Dream experiences-

Since I was at least 6 years old I used to have a recurring dream; I'm in an all white void-when suddenly immense sound of all kinds starting charging in from all sides in the form of black masses.This engulfs me and then I wake up in a panic.
Also, I would get the opposite with all black,white mass-diminishing sound,etc-then wake up out of breath or in a panic.

Recently (the last 2 years) I've only had this dream once,however the feelings I get from this dream happen to me occasionally during Meditation-now I am loosely thinking this may be the "Dark Night" as I've had very blissful meditations and such in the past.

In my meditation I'll be sitting there,and if I'm not too distracted that day i'll get that feeling I spoke of-then I have to open my eyes to prevent myself from either catching my breath or wanting to lay down.


I'm just curious,and if anyone has had this experience either in dreams or in meditation?

I asked my first teacher and he alluded it to my past life,or a state of concentration I had in the past that my mind is not used to anymore.
I asked a Zen teacher once,and he wanted to have Dokusan,but then canceled shortly afterward-so I never got an answer.


I appreciate all the input and comments. emoticon
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Nikolai ., modified 10 Years ago.

RE: Dream/Meditation Experiences

Posts: 1650 Join Date: 1/23/10 Recent Posts
David Lee Angstead:

Since I was at least 6 years old I used to have a recurring dream; I'm in an all white void-when suddenly immense sound of all kinds starting charging in from all sides in the form of black masses.This engulfs me and then I wake up in a panic.
Also, I would get the opposite with all black,white mass-diminishing sound,etc-then wake up out of breath or in a panic.


Sounds like a cool dream. My best dream was a doozy. I found myself riding a gigantic mammoth brown bear through a heavily wooded forest. I was clinging desperately to its fur around it's tree trunk sized neck. I looked over to the sides and saw two more gigantic bears galloping through the forest. I felt the wind hitting my face as a "fear" rose up in me with the thought, if this bear stops suddenly, I will be flung right up and over its head into its mouth, and i'll be consumed. That was the dream. I've had a shitload more weird dreams due to insight practice and hanging out in specific nanas (stages of insight)

Recently (the last 2 years) I've only had this dream once,however the feelings I get from this dream happen to me occasionally during Meditation-now I am loosely thinking this may be the "Dark Night" as I've had very blissful meditations and such in the past.


Probably. You have probably already crossed the stage of Arising and Passing from your years of sitting and because you are hear asking about dreams. ;-)

In my meditation I'll be sitting there,and if I'm not too distracted that day i'll get that feeling I spoke of-then I have to open my eyes to prevent myself from either catching my breath or wanting to lay down.


Make the resolution to notice those phenomena the next time it may happen(and note it if you can to re-inforce the objectification of those phenomena). Be relentlessly brave and direct with whatever arises. You have two options in any given moment: to turn away from those phenomena (which results ignorantly in craving and feeling aversion) and the other is to turn towards the phenomena arising. The latter entails noticing whatever has arisen and not generating craving nor aversion for it. Be brave, and face whatever "feeling" causes you to open your eyes. See what happens when you do turn towards it.

I'm just curious,and if anyone has had this experience either in dreams or in meditation?


Yes, I noticed and noted it and it was replaced by more arising and passing away phenomena. Dreams come and go. Don't read too much into the dreams. Or you could try being lucid in them and keep practicing while within them. Google dream yoga.

I asked my first teacher and he alluded it to my past life,or a state of concentration I had in the past that my mind is not used to anymore.
I asked a Zen teacher once,and he wanted to have Dokusan,but then canceled shortly afterward-so I never got an answer.


If your mind is "not used to it anymore" what do you think needs to be done to deal with "it" in order to progress in your practice? I have no idea what a Dokusan is. My advice is to treat it as just more phenomena, notice it, don't identify with it (meaning don't turn away from it as if it was something that affected an illusory "self"), and see what happens when you turn towards it (pay attention to it dispassionately). And try the mahasi noting method, it may help.

:-)

Nick
David Lee Angstead, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: Dream/Meditation Experiences

Posts: 3 Join Date: 7/1/11 Recent Posts
Thanks Nick, I'll try these methods in the next session.
Appreciate the input and comments.

Yes, Dreams are very strange things but sometimes more a distraction than anything else,for sure.
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Thanks again.