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ATTENTION!: It appears that our server has been hacked through this version of Liferay, meaning it is no longer secure, and so expect instability as we deal with this and attempt to upgrade to Liferay 7, which we failed to be able to do last year the last time the team attempted it, but we have no choice at this point, so bear with us as we try again. Save any long posts in a text file before posting them. You can follow me on Twitter at @danielmingram for updates if the site is down. Apologies for any complexity this causes. We will work as fast as we can. We have backups of the database, so hopefully nothing will be lost. Thanks to all helping with this complex process.

 

 

 

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Practice Logs

Hibiscus Kid's Log #3

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Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 4/29/20 2:56 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 4/28/20 8:33 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 4/29/20 6:24 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 4/29/20 6:23 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 4/29/20 6:25 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 4/29/20 5:47 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 4/30/20 6:53 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/2/20 10:00 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/2/20 10:07 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/2/20 8:04 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/4/20 6:41 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/4/20 6:50 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/5/20 6:37 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/5/20 5:15 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/6/20 7:00 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/7/20 7:05 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/7/20 7:26 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/8/20 6:49 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/9/20 8:43 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/11/20 6:32 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/11/20 6:40 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/12/20 7:46 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/12/20 6:17 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 5/13/20 2:22 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/14/20 6:40 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/14/20 6:43 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/14/20 6:54 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/14/20 6:49 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/15/20 6:16 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/15/20 6:28 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/17/20 6:43 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/17/20 6:59 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 5/18/20 3:34 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/18/20 5:18 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/18/20 5:15 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/18/20 7:43 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/19/20 6:57 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/20/20 7:42 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/21/20 3:31 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 5/25/20 5:36 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/25/20 7:13 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/26/20 6:37 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 5/26/20 6:54 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/27/20 4:25 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/27/20 6:58 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 5/27/20 7:04 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/27/20 7:42 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/27/20 5:04 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/28/20 7:37 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 5/28/20 9:28 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/28/20 9:53 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/28/20 6:26 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/29/20 4:48 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/31/20 10:13 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/31/20 6:36 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/1/20 6:36 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 6/1/20 8:10 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/1/20 8:28 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 6/1/20 8:44 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/1/20 8:50 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 6/1/20 9:01 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/1/20 7:38 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/2/20 6:38 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 6/2/20 7:21 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/2/20 8:01 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 6/2/20 8:30 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/3/20 4:52 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/3/20 4:59 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/4/20 5:18 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/5/20 4:28 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/6/20 10:36 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 6/6/20 11:15 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/8/20 6:53 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/8/20 7:05 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 6/8/20 10:55 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/9/20 6:28 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/10/20 7:27 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Olivier 6/10/20 8:06 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 6/10/20 8:38 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/11/20 6:44 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/11/20 6:57 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/11/20 7:06 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/12/20 9:25 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/14/20 7:37 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 6/14/20 9:30 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/14/20 11:21 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 6/14/20 12:31 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 6/14/20 12:47 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 6/14/20 1:07 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/4/20 7:30 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 7/4/20 8:07 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Noah D 7/4/20 10:42 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/9/20 3:18 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/9/20 4:00 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Martin 7/9/20 4:17 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/9/20 6:21 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Martin 7/9/20 6:50 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 7/10/20 1:19 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 7/9/20 4:49 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 SushiK 7/9/20 9:35 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/10/20 6:55 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Olivier 7/10/20 8:54 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/10/20 7:05 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 7/10/20 8:28 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/10/20 9:46 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 7/10/20 12:07 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 5/15/20 7:20 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/15/20 7:38 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 5/11/20 8:29 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/11/20 2:08 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 5/11/20 2:05 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 5/11/20 2:21 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 6/2/20 11:44 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 6/3/20 4:51 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/14/20 7:18 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Tim Farrington 7/14/20 7:31 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 7/14/20 12:12 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/23/20 12:16 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 7/23/20 11:15 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/23/20 11:36 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/23/20 11:41 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/23/20 4:03 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/24/20 6:56 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 7/24/20 9:04 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/25/20 7:52 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/25/20 7:53 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/25/20 7:49 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/26/20 7:30 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/26/20 3:17 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/26/20 4:51 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/27/20 7:18 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/28/20 3:18 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Tim Farrington 7/28/20 6:33 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 7/28/20 9:06 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/28/20 11:25 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 7/28/20 11:34 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/28/20 4:47 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/28/20 6:02 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Tim Farrington 7/29/20 12:22 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/29/20 9:20 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 7/29/20 3:47 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/29/20 4:51 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 7/29/20 7:13 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 SushiK 7/29/20 10:09 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Tim Farrington 7/30/20 4:16 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/30/20 4:23 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/29/20 9:13 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/30/20 4:41 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Tim Farrington 7/30/20 5:31 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/30/20 6:27 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Tim Farrington 7/30/20 7:08 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/30/20 7:44 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 7/30/20 6:47 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Tim Farrington 7/30/20 7:08 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 7/30/20 12:59 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Tim Farrington 7/30/20 11:13 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/30/20 6:53 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/30/20 5:42 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Olivier 7/31/20 6:41 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/31/20 7:41 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 7/31/20 7:40 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 8/1/20 11:21 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 8/1/20 12:13 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/1/20 4:50 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Brandon Dayton 8/1/20 2:10 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/1/20 4:56 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/1/20 5:12 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/1/20 6:00 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Brandon Dayton 8/3/20 4:43 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/4/20 7:10 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/3/20 10:19 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 8/3/20 11:13 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/3/20 11:47 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/4/20 6:49 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/4/20 8:30 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 8/4/20 11:45 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/4/20 12:05 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/4/20 12:05 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/5/20 6:53 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/5/20 7:22 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 8/5/20 7:20 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/5/20 7:40 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 8/5/20 7:48 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Siavash 8/5/20 8:08 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/5/20 8:21 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/5/20 8:14 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 8/5/20 12:28 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/6/20 6:14 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Siavash 8/5/20 7:36 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/5/20 7:41 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Siavash 8/5/20 7:47 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 shargrol 8/5/20 7:59 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Siavash 8/5/20 8:05 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/6/20 3:54 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/6/20 4:02 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/6/20 6:21 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/6/20 5:00 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 8/7/20 6:59 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/7/20 6:50 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/7/20 11:44 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Tim Farrington 8/8/20 5:17 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/8/20 8:24 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Chris Marti 8/8/20 8:36 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/8/20 9:40 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 8/9/20 11:47 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Hibiscus Kid 8/9/20 4:00 PM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Sam Gentile 8/10/20 11:37 AM
RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3 Papa Che Dusko 9/4/20 2:38 AM
Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
4/29/20 2:56 PM
The intention of this log is to report phenomenology/direct experience of my meditation sessions. I will not be mapping or reporting any of this in terms of the nanas. 

Less philosophy & conceptualization, more practice & direct reporting. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
4/28/20 8:33 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
4/28/2020 - Evening walking meditation outside - 45 minutes

Relatively slow walking (not retreat-style-slow though). Noted footsteps ("stepping, stepping or left, right"). Mostly placing of the foot was known: springiness of the grass, feeling of pressure/texture of flip flop, cold blades of grass poking at my feet.

Noted sounds - birds chirping, cars, police sirens, sound of my flip flop hitting my heel, rustle of leaves- 'hearing, hearing'.

Sights - movement in the periphery as I move through space, change in light, various objects, mostly looking at the ground - 'seeing, seeing'.  

Body - pain in joints and muscles (having just gone running), hunger, thirst, the bodily/felt experience of various emotions, calming down about 10 minutes into the session, cool air on my face - 'feeling, feeling, cool, feeling, touching, pain, pain, aversion, posture, hunger, aversion, etc.'

Emotions - mostly neutral, some awkwardness doing walking meditation in public, bits of sadness, fear - 'sadness, resistence, neutral, fear, icy, hollow, annoyed, constricted, etc.'

Smells - flowers, cut chives, fresh cut grass, musk from the brook that runs by my house - 'smelling, smelling'.

Other - Intentions to look towards where sounds were coming from, aversion to certain noises and sensations, drowsiness getting stronger throughout the session, losing concentration/mindfulness, getting lost in thought, eventually getting it back. Always trying to come back to 'stepping, stepping'. Sometimes noting 'planning' (planning what I'd write here or eat for dinner), practice thoughts, judgements, doubts, etc.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
4/29/20 6:24 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
4/29/2020 - Morning Sit - 60 minutes

Noted the breath ('in/out' or 'breath, breath'). Did not really anchor attention anywhere specific - sometimes the breath was known at the abdomen (changes is pressure, movement, tension, abdomen rubbing up against clothing, etc.) or at the nose tip (subtle vibrations, coolness, rushing, etc). Generally aware of the breath and whether it was an in-breath or an out-breath.

Morning meditations are done after I've had some coffee which means I'm usually a bit wired and the body contracts easily meaning reactivity is the primary flavor.

Noted lots of frustration/annoyance due to a variety of triggers - mental images/memories, practice thoughts/expectations, doubts, impatience, lack of interest, planning my day, worrying, getting caught in thought loops and dropping the technique, lack of interest, discomfort in body due to hunger and needing to pee.

Investigated body sensations of fear, sadness, disgust, annoyance, anger - how these manifested as sensations in the body (mostly the abdomen and sometimes around the head). 

Sometimes I'd be contracted, but it was difficult to discern any particular emotion. Just an overall reactivity. 

Overall, this meditation was characterized by feeling drowsy and attention was not very vivid or clear. Lots of frustration/reactivity and lack of interest. Spent a good portion of the session drifting off in thoughts. I was able to get back on the horse in the final 10 minutes - interest returned, investigation was easier, attention was more stable moment-to-moment.  

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
4/29/20 6:23 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Nice to see this new log - and good work!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
4/29/20 6:25 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Thank you, sir!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
4/29/20 5:47 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
4/29/2020 - Evening sit - 30 minutes

Noted the breath at the nostrils ('in/out') and the associated sensations - the rush of air and subtle vibrations. Throughout the sit, the sensations would increase or decrease in strength, at one point disappearing completely. If the nostrils were not apparent, the in-and-out breaths were known at the abdomen along with changes is tension, movement, pressure.

Impatience from the start of the sit ('impatience, tension, unpleasant') - an energetic giddiness in my abdomen near my diaphragm. Difficult emotional material starting with mental images ('mental image, thinking') and then pangs of anxiety, fear, sadness - noted and known in the body. 

Lack of motivation, lack of interest, boredom all noted appropriately. Cravings for junk food and beer were particularly strong, even while writing this the abdomen has a fist-sized, giddy energy at the diaphragm that is pulling at me ('craving, yearning, energy, contraction'). 

Drowsy - noting 'tired, drowsy' and knowing the associated sensations around my eyes/head. Knowing of how attention became less vivid, shrunk, and the thought space took over. Slowly nodding off. 

Some frustration with losing the breath as often as I did - concentration was rather weak during this sit.

Other sounds, sights (a light in my eyelids), body sensations (pressure, touching, sinking) were noted as well.   

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
4/30/20 6:53 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
4/30/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Noted the breath with attention on the abdomen ('rising/falling'). Changes is pressure/ tension and movement were known.

Lot's of excitement, anxiety, contraction, impatience, frustration, etc. were known in the abdomen and noted appropriately. Knowing the associated sensations of giddiness, energy, tingling, heat, coolness, hollowness, etc. as well as the clarity, volume, and orientation in space. Knowing the change in these sensations as the abdomen moved during the breath. 

Noting 'tingling' in my hands and feet. Noted tingling/prickling around the crown chakra region. Noted pressure from my legs and butt. Noted hearing. Noted seeing. 

Many thoughts and fantasies noted as well ('thinking, mental image, fantasy, memory, etc.') Noted planning. Noted wondering. Noted mapping. Noted progress thoughts and practice thoughts.

Also, and I have had these for months now - little 'blips'. Probably had about 6-12 of them during this session. These blips often occur when I'm lost in thought or slowly gettting pulled in by thoughts and then snap back to the sensations of the present. Like waking up abruptly. These blips occur in the region of my head (sort of behind the eyes, sometimes set further back in my head/brain). After these blips, random muscle contractions in my back as well as twitching in my extremities. One of these blips was preceded by a small bolt of energy traveling up my face to and behind the bridge of my nose. It's almost like when you turn your head really-really-quickly to look at something, but while your head is whirling around, you're not seeing anything.

Over all, a session with relatively good concentration. Not getting lost in thought as much - when mind wandering occured, I could be aware of it and hang with it to a certain extent. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/2/20 10:00 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/1/2020 - Did not practice

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/2/20 10:07 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/2/2020 - Mid-morning sit outside - 30 Minutes

Noted the feeling of the breath at the abdomen ('rising/falling' or 'breath, breath'). Sensations of pressure/tension and movement were known.

Lots of tension, anxiety in the abdomen ('anxiety, tension, aversion, stress, fear, tingling'). Drowsy ('tired, drowsy, dreamy'). Back and legs on the chair ('feeling, pressure, touching').

Sensations of temperature and wind ('feeling, prickle, heat, aversion, feeling, cool, refreshing, enjoy, ddesire, feeling, cold, aversion, warmth, cozy, pleasure, hot, aversion').

Sounds of cars, birds, people walking/running/walking ('hearing, urge to look, hearing, imagining').  

Impatience, planning, etc. noted as well. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/2/20 8:04 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/2/2020 - Mid-afternoon sit - 35 minutes

Noted breath at the nostrils ('in/out' or 'breath') knowing the sensations of air rushing in and out, tiny vibrations, temperature.

Lots of anxiety and impatience. Racing thought loops. Fear. All noted as such. 

Eventually became drowsy and started dozing off. Noting 'imagery, dreams, drowsy, waking, etc.'  

Played with the idea of making focus on the breath fun akin to 'cup-and-ball'. Experimental, not too forceful, seeing if I could hit a groove. Lightened up my attitude a bit but still plenty of aversion.  

Quit the sit early (intended to sit for 60 minutes). 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/4/20 6:41 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/3/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Noted the breath ('breath', 'in/out', 'rising/falling') as attention alternatedd between the nose tip and the abdomen at different point throughout the sit. Sensations were not very clear: just a general knowledge of breathing in or out.

Lots of impatience, anxiety, fear, sadness, drowsiness, mind wandering, planning, annoyance, dreaminess, etc. all noted appropriately. Aversion to many sensations noted as well.

Noted body sensations of sitting on the cushion, pressure in my bladder, tingling in my hands and feet. Noted twitching extremities, and discomfort. 

Concentration was not terrific during this sit. In the latter part of the sit, I chilled out a bit although impatience was as strong as ever. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/4/20 6:50 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/4/2020 - Evening sit - 60 Minutes

Noted breath ('breath' or 'in/out') examining sensations in the abdomen or nose. More of a freestyle sort of noting this evening.

Noted body sensations, thoughts, sights, sounds, reactivity, etc.

Concentration was good for about 20 minutes and then I started to doze off.

Constantly falling asleep and waking trying my best to note dreams and sensations while awake.

Last 12 minutes I was awake and stayed with the rest of the sit pretty well noting the breath and impatience and urges and such. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/5/20 6:37 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/5/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Noted the breath at the nostrils ('breath, breath') and related sensations were known.

Noted body sensations, sounds, various thoughts, plans, mental images, mapping/practice thoughts, etc.

Concentration was fairly good and I gelt engaged in the session until I started to get drowsy. Happy little fantasies bubbled up and then I started slipping into sleep here and there.

Felt a bit emotionally neutral if not a tad happy. 

All in all, not as much reactivity or contraction during this sit. If reactivity arose, I'd go back to the body and breath, not proliferting it via thought loops and watch the reactivity pass on its own. Lots of ease and relaxation noted. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/5/20 5:15 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/5/2020 - Evening sit - 30 minutes

Noted the breath at the nostrils ('breath' or 'in/out').

Noted body sensations ('pressure, touching, comfort'), noted practice/mapping thoughts, noted joy, noted ease, noted intentions to ground attention in the felt sense of the body, noted mental images, etc.

Overall nice and laid back, plenty of ease, any reactivity stood out like a sore thumb and was welcomed and investigated with curiosity. There was sort of this cold, giddy/tingly, hollow feeling in my abdomen when the reactivity did arise which felt similar to depressive episodes. Interesting to see what thoughts bubbled up during that point in the sit and how my overall attitude changed.

Concentration was fairly good although I did get a bit dull/dreamy towards the end.  

 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/6/20 7:00 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/6/2020 - Morning session - 60 minutes sitting & 30 minutes walking

Sitting portion:

Noted the breath at both the nostrils and the abdomen ('breath, breath' or 'rising/falling' or 'in/out'). Movement of the abdomen, changes is pressure tension, vibrations/rushing, and temperature were known.

The sit started well enough - concentration and motivation were good, noting precisely and rather quickly without having to force anything - impermanence was the obvious flavor. Noted body sensations of pressure, touching, temperature, constriction, vibrations/tingling in the hands, muscle twitches, etc. Noted thoughts of all types - personal dramas, fears, practice thoughts, future thoughts, planning, scenarios, doubts, etc. Noted about a half dozen small blips as described in the post about morning sit of 4/30/2020 above. 

Eventually, I became bored and impatient (noting these and going back to the breath/body). Thoughts started to become more vivid as I got lost in mind wandering. Eventually realized this and double-downed on returning to the breath, trying to keep it close at hand. Yet another sit with plenty of reacitivity. 

Walking portion (outside): 

Noted the feet as I was walking ('stepping, stepping' or 'walking, walking'). Changing sensations of pressure and touching in the feet were known.

Noted temperature, sounds, sights, tension in the body, planning, fantasizing, craving, future thoughts, tiredness, headd pressures, etc. 

Concentration was rather good during this walking session - some part of the mind seemed to be connected to the feet a majority of the time. The session helped to relieve lots of the impatience and resistence that 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/7/20 7:05 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/6/2020 - Night session ~ 25 minutes

Was shooting to sit for 45 minutes before bed, but fell asleep multiple times so I decided to quit early and get the rest I needed. 

Mindfulness of breathing + noting while awake...

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/7/20 7:26 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/7/2020 - (I turn 27 years old today!) - Morning session - 60 minutes sitting & 30 minutes walking

Sitting portion:

Noted the breath at the nostrils or in the abdomen. Changes is pressure, tension, vibrations, rushing, prickling, etc. were known.

Noted body sensations, emotions, reactivity, and thoughts of all sorts. 

Concentration was good for a while, then there was quite a bit of mind-wandering, then extra effort (grounding myself in the body), and eventually I was a bit more concentrated by the end of the sit.

Walking portion:

Noted the foot steps and noticed associated sensations in the feet.

Also noted sights, sounds (attraction, aversion, mental images associated with these), thought loops, other body sensations (and resultant mental images of the body in quick succession), etc. 


All in all: Thoughts about progress and doubts were especially strong today. Very sticky - takes me a little while to realize what's going on and then to note appropriately.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/8/20 6:49 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/8/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Noted the breath at the nostrils mainly.

Motivation before the sit was nonexistent, but sitting wasn't so bad at first. Concentration and interest ramped up early. Noting boddy sensations, sounds, the sight of my eyelids, thoughts, and emotions.

Mind wandering was pretty strong - dragged into thought loops quite a few times. Trying to be gentle but noting frustration when realizing what happened and coming back to the breath. Noting practice-thoughts, progress thoughts, doubts and judgements about meditative ability.

Abdomen felt really tight/constricted. Lots of reactivity, frustration, anger. Feeling the uncomfortable tingling in the abdomen and how it changed with the breath. Seeing the associated chains of thought and how the mind wanted to go off into thought instead of sitting in the muck. Noticing how indulging in certain narratives would ramp up the associated reactive sensations/tensions/emotions in the body. 

So much impatience and resistence to what was arising. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/9/20 8:43 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/9/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Freestyle noting mostly. Spent the first 45 or so minutes really lost in thought. Repeatedly trying to get back to the body/breath/noting.

Eventually switched to noting aloud which helped keep me grounded for the rest of the session.

Noted body sensations (touching, pressure, vibrations, feeling), thoughts (practice thoughts, mental images, imagining, wondering, narratives, etc.), sounds, sights, impatience, etc. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/11/20 6:32 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/10/2020 - Morning sit - 20 minutes

Didn't have much time to sit - from what I remember, it was sorta anxious, unclear, sleepy, etc. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/11/20 6:40 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/11/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Noted the breath mostly at the nostrils. Concentration was relatively okay - I tried to increase it at points by narrowing focus. Noting was mostly freestyle. At one point, I was becoming extremely sleepy and switched to noting out loud... very interesting that I would start dozing off yet I was still noting out loud. 

Other than that, sit felt rather plain, bit of impatience, many practice thoughts, not much happening at the moment. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/11/20 8:29 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
5/9/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Freestyle noting mostly. Spent the first 45 or so minutes really lost in thought. Repeatedly trying to get back to the body/breath/noting.

Eventually switched to noting aloud which helped keep me grounded for the rest of the session.

Noted body sensations (touching, pressure, vibrations, feeling), thoughts (practice thoughts, mental images, imagining, wondering, narratives, etc.), sounds, sights, impatience, etc. 

I find that Noting Aloud does exactly what you describe. Keeps both feet on the ground throughout the session. Sensation after sensation, feeling after feeling, mind state after mind state. Not much chance to lift up from the ground and fly in the dream land. 

I do find that pace of noting aloud can slow or speed up depending on the stage or/and states of mind. This feels good when the balance is struck. Still I find that noting aloud works all the way through the maps. In EQ it will go slow as there is much more all-inclusiveness and ease of noticing. 

Each stage has its tempo and noting aloud voice becomes both mantra-like and the stick used by the trapeze walker, balancing the spoken word, and the breathing, with the energy and clarity/or lack thereof. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/11/20 2:08 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Yes, my personal goal is to be engaged and note consistently during each session. Noting aloud can facilitate that moment to moment consistency and I use it where appropriate. Your log actually helped resurrect my interest in noting out loud. 

That being said, I don't pay attention to noting speed, inclusiveness of attention or try to figure out where I am on the maps as much during this period of my practice. That sort of stuff used to drive me crazy and got in the way of just experiencing what is happing right 'now' because I always conceptualized it and tried to fit it into some stage. I see a lot of other practitioners do the same - they get a tingle near their 'third eye' or a have some idea/philosophy about reality and then they need to figure out whether that means they are in A&P, Dark Night, EQ, etc. Why can't a tingle be a tingle and a thought just be a thought? If you looked through my old logs, I did tons of that sort of thing - looking for sensations/experiences to clue me in to where I am on the maps. It still happens now as a force of habit, but I notice it as more sensations and drop it. 

I know that in a few years I'll probably understand where I am on the map in any given moment/session, but for now it seems a bit besides the point. I'll let my teacher do the mapping for me hehe

Apologies if this came off ranty, but if we were talking face to face, you'd see me say this with a smile on my face emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/11/20 2:05 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
That's ok emoticon 

I do see how my reply could look like it's focusing on mapping. My apologies. I also tend not to think about maps but only what's now. Tap, tap, tap ... whatever that is. 

What I meant to say is that at times clarity will not be there which is also fine but can feel unpleasant and noting more than 1 sensation per second (approximately of course) is all we get. I find that slowing down helps instead of trying to see clearly more sensations. I find it helpful to use K. folk's "there is ..." phrase and while saying it with no rush note the first sensation that is clear. 

And at times there just are heaps of clarity and mouth can't even say so many noted sensation so I note it all and mumble the words. I guess here one could also just shut up and note silently or simply just notice. I prefer vocalisation as it also provides extra stuff for noting. 
As far as I see it, we use our mouth a lot during waking hours and so our eyes too. I keep em both open and engaged during the sit emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/11/20 2:21 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
As far as I see it, we use our mouth a lot during waking hours and so our eyes too. I keep em both open and engaged during the sit emoticon 


Ahh yes, I've watched the videos you made of a few of your sessions. Good stuff! 

Thank you for the pointers my friend! emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/12/20 7:46 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/12/2020 - Morning sit - 75 minutes

Woke up at 2 am and couldn't sleep so this sit was really sluggish.

Noted the breath at the nostrils ('breath, breath' or 'in/out') and sensations of rushing, pressure, coolness, vibrations, and tension were known.

Experience became dull rather quickly. Within a 15-20 minutes, I was falling asleep. Trying my best to note the dreams and the waking.

The last 15-20 minutes, I perked up a bit. Noting body sensations such as pain in my legs, the breath, touching/feeling of muscles tightening or arms placed on legs, clothing, pressure on the cushion, etc. Noted mind states. Noted the way the posture changed as the energy levels increased or decreased. Noted that there was an overall 'okayness' during the sit - aversion wasn't so strong, and impatience was very subtle. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/12/20 6:17 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/12/2020 - Evening session - 45ish sitting, 30ish walking

Sitting portion:

Sat outside and practiced freestyle noting. Would note the breath at the nostrils on occasion, but the predominate experiences noted were sounds (cars, birds, people talking, dogs barking, my roommate lifting weights outside, etc.), body sensations (warmth of the sun, cool air, wind on my face and feet, pressure from the chair, placement of body, muscle twitches, contraction, etc.), thoughts (mental images corresponding to body parts where sensations occured, mental images related to sounds, planning dinner, mapping, etc.), urges (to open my eyes, to look for sources of sounds, or shift my body). 

Walking portion: 

Not proud of this: meant to walk 45 minutes, but cut it short. Walked to a liquor store as I need wine for a recipe tonight, but this wasn't my plan. Attention was really solid at first, noting the sensations of the feet on the ground, but craving took over and lead me to the package store... and now I am enjoying a beer while I write this.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/13/20 2:22 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
And you didn't offer me one! Talk about bad hospitality emoticon 

Cheers mate! Have good one! emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/14/20 6:40 AM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Hehe a precept is only with breaking if it would be ruder not to. If we ever cross paths, a pint would be nice emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/14/20 6:43 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/13/2020 - Evening sit - 25 minutes outside

Noted the breath, sounds (birds, cars, dogs, people talking, wind), body sensations (wind, coolness, pressure, twitching, etc.), emotions, thoughts, etc.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/14/20 6:54 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/14/2020 - Morning sit - 75 minutes

Noted the breath mostly at the nose, but sometimes in the abdomen and the body ('in/out' or 'rising/falling'). Sensations of rushing, coolness, tension, movement, heaving, strain, were known.

Plenty of thoughts - mental images, planning, fantasizing, songs, planning thoughts, mapping thoughts, narratives, etc.

Sounds and reactions to sounds - associated mental images or aversion/neutrality (dog barking - annoyance - thoughts about owner/dog, truck beeping - annoyance/aversion - mental image).  

Emotions/mind states - slight annoyance, slight boredom, sluggishness, tiredness, motivation, hope, increased effort, holllow/coolness and tingling in the abdomen, guilt.

Overall, a standard sit. Concentration was relatively okay - came back to the breath repeatedly. Occasional mindwandering and associated discouragement/guilt. Sat a bit longer than usual, only slight impatience later in the sit. Late part of the sit became really drowsy and mental imagery became more vivid. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/14/20 6:49 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/14/2020 - Afternoon sits - 45 minutes & 30 minutes

After finishing work for the day, I sat for 45 minutes. Noted the breath at the nostrolis. Within ten minutes I was fast asleep. Would wake up, take note of that, go back to the breath. Repeat until the last 10 minutes of the sit - finally woke up and felt refreshed and was able to note the breath, impatience, and an urge to get up and enjoy the weather outside.


Later on, sat outside in the sun for 30 minutes. Noted the breath, the feeling of warmth, the sounds of birds and cars and people, body sensations, cool air, enjoyment, thinking about practice, etc. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/15/20 6:16 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hello Hector, the birds really are fun to listen to!

I usually meditate with my eyes closed. It depends on my mood that day. Sometimes the visual field is fun to tune into, but other times I prefer to close my eyes.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/15/20 6:28 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/15/2020 - Morning sit - 75 minutes

Mostly let attention rest on the breath at the nostrils in a general way. Less emphasis on breath sensations and more of an emphasis on general awareness of the breath cycle itself. Less labeling today than usual (felt like a lot of effort) in favor of soaking in the sensations. Came back to labeling when it was clear that I was getting off track. 

Many mind states and thoughts/conceptualizations about practice rolled through. Noticing again and again what was dragging the mind off of simply being with the breath. There was quite a bit of physical contraction/stress which then manifested as future thoughts, reacitivity, judgements, planning, etc. Sitting in and being with the discomfort of physical contraction wasn't a big deal, but the thoughts sure were compelling/magnetic. 

The usual states of impatience and boredom and aversion and such arose, but the habit of noticing and going back to the breath was more persistent. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/15/20 7:20 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hector:
Do you have eyes open or closed for the outside sit? I love freestyle noting too, and I noticed a lot of bird songs these days.

They sure are busy at this time of the year emoticon So much to be noted with birds singing. My eyes are open but I meditate indoors and see a bird pass the window occasionally. But I do hear them and notice image impressions of the bushes around our house with a bird on it or on a branch or on the roof, assuming. It's also mostly pleasant feel when I hear the bird singing. Also when it stops then there is anticipation waiting to hear it again maybe.  Etc ... lots of material there. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/15/20 7:38 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Hector, I personally like the bird calls as an object as well. The season of spring is always lovely as an opportunity to sit outside, and the birds provied a show. There are many different bird calls coming from different angles in the stereo field and many of those calls involve rapid staccatos. Unique in their own way. A reminder of the fact that we are only here so long because the birds don't always chirp like this. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/17/20 6:43 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/16/2020 - Did not meditate

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/17/20 6:59 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/17/2020 - Morning sit - 35 minutes

Tired, lots of planning thoughts, restlessness, etc.



5/17/2020 - Evening sit - 60 minutes

Noticed the breath, always going back to the breath at the nose tip or just generally knowing the point in the breath cycle. Fewer labels than usual.

Some drowsiness and head bobbing.

Cravings/desire - just so many cravings (in this case for beer). Contracted body because of cravings: experientially, a giddiness in the abdomen around the sternum. Related physical sensations. Thought loops (bargaining and the like) and expectations accompanying that desire. Again and again and again. Uncomfortable when coming back to it, but when sitting with it, the resistance dies down - this constrictions is what it is. Always coming to the feeling the breath at the nose or at the abdomen and the related physical sentations and mental images with wanting a beer. 

Sat for 60 minutes, but 55 of those minutes were truly concerned with thoughts and feelings about beer. Wow.

Thoughts about "what if I just didn't drink tonight" and related feelings/thoughts of discomfort (what else is there? what else will I do? must we quit today?).

Rode the wave of craving tonight.... and after the sit I gave in to it. Not here to discuss addiction, but my mind was at least able to stay with craving for long periods and just feel the discomfort and stay in touch with that form of reactivity. That's a 'start' (but I also don't know the end haaaa emoticon). I've seen a video of an arahant chewing tons of Betel nuts/leaves so I belive these things aren't so straight forward. Oh well!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/18/20 3:34 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
"Fewer labels than usual."

Yes, addiction is a motherfucker that thrives on the feeling of guilt. 
Mine is consumption of the Swedish chewing tobacco. 

Online browsing would be another one. Addicted to guitar related gear yet another one. Having late snacks another. Coffee overload another. 

Ah yes emoticon 

No matter what, no matter how many addictions I have and how lost of a motherfucker I seem to be, one thing, that ONE THING, I keep sacred! The sitting practice of minimum of 45 minutes once a day! 

No slacking, no getting lost in guilt thoughts for more than that Labeled Moment. There is a good reason behind both Shinzen and Kenneth talking in high regard about Noting Aloud (yes Shinzen also suggests this so to keep hindrances away and to keep an unbroken stream of noting). 

Instead of asking yourself "can I be without beer today?" ask "can I practice noting aloud without having laps in mindfulness in this one sit?"  Tell yourself that you will get that beer anyway, with or without a guilt trip during the practice. And once your timer goes off enjoy that beer emoticon 

Since I've started incorporating eyes open and noting aloud (even if sensory clarity is strong) the practice has become a different beast. 

I know you know that practice is the only important thing here. It really is. Keeping mindfulness of that unbroken stream of consciousness is very important. I will do any uncool practice to achieve exactly that. Noting Aloud is exactly that. Uncool. Even more uncool if I sit on a normal chair with eyes open. My practice looks nothing like those noble cross legged monks of deep samadhi. But it is of great benefit and that's what matters. 

So fuck that beer and guilt about it. Have that beer and enjoy it. Being totally wasted might not be good for practice so doing practice before the tipsy -ness is better. Have the beer later and enjoy it. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/18/20 5:15 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/18/2020 - Afternoon sit - 60 minutes

Noted the breath. Noted sounds and body sensations and light behind the eyes. Noting/labeling was rather consistent andd persistent. 

Overall, I went through the usual practice arc that I go through - starting with motivation and good concentration, eventually that giving away to drowsiness and distracting thoughts, then to impatience and boredom.

Today, that final leg of the sit (boredom and impatience) was fun to explore. Like learning to stand on a surboard. The motivation to practice well was strong throughout the session. Attention stayed close to the breath and to body sensations related to any end-of-sit giddness. Some of these body sensations which are usually uncomfortable started to become blissful. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/18/20 5:18 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
I've seen Shinzen mention out loud as well. It's cool to me emoticon 

Regarding the beer: it's less about drinking that bothers me, but the cravings. The cravings are what I need to lean into because at the moment, those cravings are what cause discomfort which in turn drives my behavior!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/18/20 7:43 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/18/2020 - Evening sit with the local Zen group over Zoom - 60 minutes

I wrote a bit more about this sit, but then the forum malfunctioned when I tried to post it.

Some intense leg pain arose (I usually sit for 60-75 minutes without too much discomfort) during this particular session. Was a lovely opportunity to examine pain and the reactivity/aversion to pain and how that manifested as impatience and such (funny how searing pain in the leg can cause the entire organism to contract). Sat with it for about 10 minutes before deciding to switch positions.

Good session overall with a decent string of mindful awareness.  

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/19/20 6:57 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/19/2020 - Morning sit - 75 minutes

Noted the breath at the nostrils mainly. The sit itself was mostly sleepy/tired. Dullness would creep up, I'd become aware of that and sit up straighter, take a deeper breath, focus a bit more intensely on the sensations at the nostrils, then drop some of the effort.

Many thought loops, mental imagery, dreaminess, dozing, waking up, frustration - repeat cycle.

Last 15 or so minutes were relatively clear and awake. Any impatience or discomfort that arose was manageable. Things were normal, fine, everything in proportion.

Motivation, faith, confidence held up through most of the sit. There was willingness to go back to the breath again and again and to engage with the content of the sit.  

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/20/20 7:42 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/20/2020 - Morning sit - 35 minutes

Couldn't sleep last night but got up at the usual time to sit. Cut the sit early to go back to bed (planned on sitting for 60 minutes). Just way too tired. Noticed the urge to endd the sit, and the desire to keep sitting. Sat with that for a bit. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/21/20 3:31 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/21/2020 - Afternoon sit - 60 minutes

Tired, no motivation, extremely impatient, but stayed sitting.

Noted the breath at the nostrils and felt snesations in my body. Many thoughts. Dozed off here and there. Opened my eyes andd noted out loud for a bit at that point. 

Fidgeted and twitched and bargained with myself to cut the sit short but managed to stay with it, continually going back to the breath and sat the entire session. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/25/20 5:36 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hope you are doing well mate! emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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5/25/20 7:13 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Hello friend! I've been doing alright, no worries. Haven't been sitting as much these last few days due to schedule and motivation. The short sits that I've managed have been generally challenging ones as I really feel a bit burnt out with life and meditation practice. Really didn't feel like logging anything here as motivation to do that has also been nonexistent. I made sure to take the seat for a little time each day, even if inconsequentially small. 

Feeling a bit more inspired now - we will see what's in store for the coming week. Thank you for checking in and for being really consistent about your daily 45er. It's inspiring stuff! Be well! 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/26/20 6:37 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/25/2020 - Evening sit - 60 minutes

Sit with local Zen group via Zoom. Noted the breath at the nostrils. Lots of emotional reactivity. Noted fairly consistently. Dealt with a lot of leg pain towards the end of the sit but did not change positions - good chance to explore/note pain sensations and aversion. 

5/26/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Noted breath at the nostrils. Many scenarios and imaginings. Hunger, drowsiness, headache, stress, planning, aversion, doubts, body sensations, soundsd, etc. Decided to note out loud a little while after falling victim to mind wandering repeatedly. Fairly weak concentration and enthusiasm. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/26/20 6:54 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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5/27/20 4:25 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/26/2020 - Evening sit - 60 minutes

Worked on concentration at the recommendation of my teacher - following the breath at the nostrils while contacting 7 points in the cycle: beginning, middle, end of the in-breath, & beginning, middle, end of the out-breath & then aware of the body in between breaths.

Worked on the concentration for about 15 (minutes), then switched to noting for a while (maybe 15 minutes) - sorta switching off between concentration and noting as appropriate. 

Over all, the session follow it's usual arc of: enthusiasm, momentum, drowsiness, dreaminess, distractedness, frustration, other emotional content, to feeling slightly more awake, re focussing, impatience, etc. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/27/20 6:58 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/27/2020 - Morning sit - 90 minutes

There was a 5 minute interruption about 15 minutes into the sit.

Started with focus on the nostrils and the 7 points of the breath cycle. I'd breathe slow and made an effort to contact the points in the breath. Did this a few times (1-5 times) before letting the effort go and letting the mind rest on the breath. I'd repeat this as needed. The first 15 minutes of the sit were building concentration in this way. 

....then had to attend to something.....

Then got back on the cushion, built more concentration repeating the above exercise, and eventually switched to noting. Noted body sensations, and sounds, noticing the width of attention. Noted thoughts, the breath, emotions, odd pressures in the head, hunger pangs, muscle twitching, urges, memories, places, etc. Noting speed was rather fast.

When I felt momentum and focus dwindle, I'd switch back to the 7 point breath exercise. When concentration was increased, back to noting.

At some point, the mind got really dull and dreamy and I switched to noting aloud for a short period of a few minutes until the dullness subsided somewhat and wasn't as much of an issue.

Finished the last few minutes with minor boredom, minor impatience, relatively good mindfulness to catch aforementioned hindrances, and a sense of ease. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/27/20 7:04 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
That some fine shit there emoticon love how you navigate the terrain and hindrances. Shift up, shift down. 

I do this throughout the sit and use different ways to handle uncertainty or doubt, restlessness, sleepiness etc 

We all are, at the end, creating our own personal method and our own map in accordance to our mind's terrain. That's what matters. Not Ingram's Map or Mahasi Map but our own and of course it has similarities with those maps as that seems the way Mind cycles. 

I know of no better "secret source" than Profound Mindfulness as I simply can't be mindful in the past or future. Just now, right now emoticon I can't choose my terrain but I certainly can apply some strength to the mindfulness in form of Intent, Effort, Acceptance. I can see the hindrance and apply more or less of the above. One day it's like milk and honey, another day is pure shit emoticon It's the name of the game. But you know all this already. Stil nice to get reminder once in a while. We all need that. 

Good stuff! 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/27/20 7:42 AM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
I've always wanted to keep it simple and not have to switch tactics during a sit, but it seems that I am running into walls.

Slowly learning what may need adjusting when responding to hindrances so that the clarity and continuity of mindfulness is supported.

This learning process will take a while, I am sure. 

Thank you for the enouragement and pointers Papa Che. It's just as nourishing as milk and honey emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/27/20 5:04 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/27/2020 - Early evening sit - 60 minutes

Tried to start with the 7 point breath exercise, but within 30 seconds it was clear that this sit was going to be primarily dozing off. Tight focus was not going to work.

Quickly switched to noting to open up the scope of attention, and shortly after that swtiched to noting out loud. Noting became slow. I'd note a sensation, but barely experience the sensation as the dullness was so strong. Watched mental images and thoughts become immersive and vivid as I drifted off into sleep. Watched the body as it sank down. I'd still be noting out loud and the sound of my voice would wake me back up. At one point, a dream figure asked me a question and I answered out loud instead of saying a label.

Only felt slightly more awake during the last few minutes of the sit. A bit of impatience and wondering how much time I had left in the sit as it became hard to gauge time with all the noddding off. 

Overall, huge lack of clarity and inability to be intimate with experience, however, noting was reasonable persistent given the extreme hindrance. 

Besiddes that, noted the breath, body sensations, sounds, the inside of my eyelids, and thoughts.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/28/20 7:37 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/28/2020 - Morning sit - 90 minutes

Sat down with the intention of practicing the 7 point breath exercise, but the mind wasn't having it. Switched noting to settle in a bit and tried again. Still unsuccessful: concentration flagging within seconds of turning to the breath. The points were not clear, thoughts disrupting the ability to even see the end of the in-breath or out-breath. Switched back to noting.

Noted the thoughts, body sensations, sounds, the overall sense of ease, but also felt unwell. Noticed aversion, desire, mindstates and motivations: senses of frustration related to poor concentration as well as guilt related to what I'd report to my teacher. Doubt was strong. Life frustrations popped up in my mind causing the abdomen to react with myriad of sensations: uncomfortable coolness and tingling, contraction, quick flashes like electrical impulses which the mind wanted to turn away from. 

Tried the breath exercise with poor results. Back to noting. Eventually drowsiness and the associated body sensations and vivid mental images started to arise. Swtiched to noting out loud. Kept this up until drowsiness subsided. 

Motivation was low. With about 25 minutes left, got to a place of relative calm with little impatience and frustration. Reminding myslef again and again to come back to the moment no matter how unsatsifying. Looking for areas of discomfort and aversion. Seeing what in the body and mind caused me to get off the breath.

The last few minutes of the sit, there was quite a bit of leg pain. Noted accordingly as well as the aversion. Seeing how the body slightly tensedd up to change position and relieve pain. Relaxed back into the posture, noticing the breath and the pain. Urges arose to check the timer and shift my position, but I stayed put and try to be receptive to the physical and mental discomfort.

Overall, a challenging sit, but not the worst one by far.  

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/28/20 9:28 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Try to notice "inability to perceive clearly" or "dullness" or "intent to perceive the in and out breath" or "desire to be alert". 

You have many Mind States arising and I'm sure they all have some Feeling Tone to it. Is the Inability unpleasant? Is the dullness unpleasant? Is the Intent unpleasant? Is the Desire unpleasant? 

When sensory clarity is not there I find it's best just to contact as many body sensations or mind states or feelings as possible. Just touch them and move on to the next arising. If even this seems like "Uncertain if I'm really noting correctly" then I use the label Certain or Uncertain with each Noting like ; 
Coolness-Certain, hearing-certain, listening-certain, eyesight blip-uncertain ... and soon I realize that there is more certainty than not emoticon 

Also when Restlessness arises try to hunt down the image in the mind; is there an image of your timer in your mind after you notice restlessness. If so keep watching this and see if there is some unpleasant body sensation there that's happening but is not being noticed. One can certainly connect these dots. 

All this can be done when sensory clarity is not that sharp. When it is sharp then going deeper into each sensation is much easier. 

What can I do with today's mind terrain? How does this terrain look like, feel like? Is it clear or muddy, sharp or dull? Deep or shallow? 
If I'm sleepy then full on noting as fast as possible will fire up stuff, all while yawning emoticon 

It really helps to realize that mind terrain changes all the time and certain approach suits better one terrain than another. It's good to be curious about the terrain so not to get frustrated or fall prey to hindrances. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/28/20 9:53 AM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
All good advice: I'll read this again and be sure to investigate more. I do some of this to a degree, but it is still developing. Thank you Papa Che! 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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5/28/20 6:26 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/28/2020 - Evening sit - 60 minutes

Before the sit, I took a nap and went for a run so I was a bit refreshedd and energized for the part of my day where my energy levels are lowest.

The sit itself:
The 7 point breath practice still was not appealing. Tried a few rounds and then let go. Usually I breath much more slowly and deeply when trying to see the different points in the breath, which means the pattern of sensations at the nose tip is different when compared to normal breathing.

After going back to normal breathing, the sensations at the nose - especially the out-breath - were extremely vivid. There was a vibration akin to the hum of bees on a honeycomb. Usually the in-breath is more apparent, but it was reversed during this session. 

My intention was to keep attention loosely focused on the nose whilst letting in other sensations and noting appropriately.

There were body sensations and sounds and thoughts and emotions and mindstates interspersed with the breath sensations. 
Occasionally I'd get lost in thought, but for very short periods. The usual period of dreaminess did come up after about 20 minutes, but it was not so strong that I had to switch to noting allowed.

Lot of stress and guilt every time the mind wandered. (This is my fault - I vented to my teacher this week [in addition to this forum] about progress and she upped the ante - the idea being that I need to practice more each day and also work on concentration so that no session is half-assed. This means I feel a certain sense of accountability and that mind wandering is a small failure. Then again, wandering is what the mind does so I'll just have to get used to the new sense of responsibility while being easy.)

Last 15 minutes were restless. Cravings for a beer. Leg pain. Uncomfortable sensations in the abdomen. Mental images. Intentions to turn attention to the breath. To observe the pain. To observe the aversion. To see the mind jumping between the these various experiences. Confusion with regards to what the 'proper' object of observations should be. Questioning. Doubts. Intentions to shift the leg, intentions to hold off, finally giving in and moving the leg and for a moment the pain got even worse. 

Besides the last 15 minutes of this sit, it was reasonably calm and somewhat enjoyable even if the mind didn't always want to play along. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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5/29/20 4:48 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/29/2020 - Afternoon sit - 45 minutes

Lazy sit marked primarily by mind wandering/forgetting, lack of motivation/interest/engagement, impatience, planning, and exhaustion. 

That's all I'll be doing today. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/31/20 10:13 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/31/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Practiced coming back to the breath and the nostrils again and again while noting the wider field of experience.

Overall, there was little motivation to practice today, lots of restlessness and planning. Confusion. Grogginess. Future thoughts. Not much enjoyment. Check the timer a few times. Concentration and patience were weak. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
5/31/20 6:36 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
5/31/2020 - Evening sit - 60 Minutes

Sat on my cushion outside in the evening sun. Noted mostly sounds and body sensations. 

The sit went through the usual arc - motivated and on the ball, losing momentun, sleepy, tired, dozy, wandery, then slightly more awake, renwed effort, slight impatience, leg pain, feeling really plain for the rest of the sit etc.

This sit seemed really smooth in that I wasn't really 'caught up'. Discomfort was allowed to be discomfort, pain was allowed to be pain, mindstates were allowed to do their things and there was a sense of nonattachment. Just simple and alright. I got that sense that, although my leg was in pain and there I was wondering how much longer the sit was, I could have continued to sit like that for a while. Concentration wasn't particularly strong, but everything was fine just as it was.

Good sit overall! 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/1/20 6:36 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/1/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Woke up at 3 am and coulddn't sleep.

Decided to get up , check the news, and have some coffee, etc.

Finally got around to sitting down. Focussed on the breath at the nostrils. After a few minutes, fell asleep. Vivid mental imagery when entering the dream space. Spent most of the sit just asleep, waking up here and there and quickly drifting off again. No chance to meditate properly. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/1/20 8:10 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
NOTE; Do tell me to shut up if my replies seem unnoying emoticon At times we might just feel to practice and log and not have many tips and tricks being thrown at us. I will respect this big time.

HK Im not pushing anything at you mate and think that you should practice the way you choose is best for you but for some reason I felt to show you this video. You only have to hear it from the start to 2:23 , and hear at the end of that part what Shinzen sais about himself when practicing (in this vid he aslo mentions the importance of not breaking the stream of noting)
Im sure you have seen this one but please do take time and just hear these 2:23 minutes of it. If necessery re-listen as I know from my own experience I have the tendency not to hear stuff thats of importantce even if hearing it emoticon 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=StBTuX0tqU8

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/1/20 8:28 AM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
You're never annoying and always welcome to comment on this log! 

Rereading my report above, I realize that I didn't mention that I was noting with labels. A good 95% of my practice involves the use of labels as I am attached to the 'feedback mechanism' aspect of the technique. 

Good to hear Shinzen practices this way, I'll be sure to watch the video in full. emoticon

Thank you for looking out for me! 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/1/20 8:44 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
You are welcome emoticon 

I must admit that I have a few favorite (noting) videos of Shinzen and Kenneth that I listen to every day or two just to remind me of the "KISS beginner mind" emoticon That really pays off in my view as we can get the tendency to fly too high just to fall very low emoticon 

As ALL seems to be in the Mind it really is a slippery terrain to navigate and very easy to slip without noticing it (unless we ARE noticing it, constantly ... well, during the sit at least).

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/1/20 8:50 AM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Oh yes, I agree that Kenneth's videos are really awesome - short and sweet. When I find myself overcomplicating things, it's nice to rewatch those videos. 

Shinzen is also has quite a bit of great content on youtube and I am a fan of his 'concentration, sensory clarity, and equanimity' model. That has been helpful. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/1/20 9:01 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Ha! emoticon Shin and Ken vids are my dhamma porn emoticon 

Honestly as soon as I catch myself pressing the Refresh on You Tube too many times I know its time to find those vids by Shin and Ken and let that do the work in my mind instead. Dhamma talks are very important and these are my favorite Dhamma "Neo-suttas" as is some of Michael Taft's podcast stuff.

Gotta be well inspired by the One's emoticon I give them my ear and let them  deliever the goods. I will do the no pain no gain part on me own some emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/1/20 7:38 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/1/2020 - Evening sit - 60 minutes

Was supposed to sit with the Zen group over Zoom but Zoom wasn't working so I sat by myself. Almost gave up and did something else instead!

Didn't hang out with the breath as much. Noted mostly various body sensations and sounds along with thoughts and emotions. 

Usual cycle: Normal feeling - gaining momentum - loss of interest - dullness - drowsiness - dreaminess - waking - renewed  vigor - impatience - normalness - okayness.

To get through the stage of dullness and drowsiness, I noted out loud. I'm noticing that I will say notes out loud but I may not be ultra aware of what I just noted. I may reflect for a moment and realize that I don't remember what just happened and that I wasn't quite in touch with it. My mouth spoke, but I am not sure what it might have just said...

Also noticing that I am being a bit lazy in terms of sensate clarity - I may experience some emotion such as impatience or being 'bummed out'. These emotions/mind states have physical components and I can either just note 'impatience' or dig in and note the sensations in the abdomen 'tingling, sharp, coolness, aversion, flash, heavy, lump, nausea'. I feel that I need to get more clear and note the component sensations of the greater whole. I've been less concerned with noting quickly and just trying to be more steady and honest with regards to what is happening. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/2/20 6:38 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/2/2020 - Morning sit - 75 minutes

Started with noting/labeling the breath, but was mostly aware of (and labeled) thoughts, sounds, and body sensations.

Once again, tired as usual. It was hard to focus on anything in particular or stabilize attention on anything. Dealt with a lot of drowsiness and dullness. Labeled out loud for a good portion of the sit so I wouldn't fall asleep. I never really woke up from the stupor like I usually do. 

The body was mostly calm, but there there was definitely frustration/contraction related to being so tired/dull, frustration due to thoughts about progress, frustration due to weak concentration, etc. The quick speed of noticing that Daniel recommends just wasn't possible. Sorta felt like I was just sitting there. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/2/20 7:21 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Ingram suggests 1-10 sensations per second. Meaning 1 sensation per second is sufficient in case of a stage/state that's less clear. 

Shinzen suggests not breaking the stream of labeling during the sit no matter how fast or slow it goes. 

It looks like both of them are suggesting to use noting/labeling as a tool to keep attention in mindful mode throughout the whole sit. 

I know 75 minutes looks like a pro sit emoticon but in all fairness I think you would get more out of it if you sit 45 minutes but do make sure not to break that stream of labeling at all, no matter if you are certain or uncertain if you are noting correctly or not (in this case just note the Uncertainty mind state and move back to the easier sensations like body). 

Im sure you can note aloud 1 sensation a second for 45 minutes today and for the next 2 days. See how this goes and conclude afterwards. 

Going back from 60-75 minutes to 45 minutes is not a downgrade. You can always up the time and you know that. 

Do you try open eyes when sleepiness/dullness arises? One good thing with sleepiness is the change in focus. The focus gets less sharp and wider and more open. Yeps, Jhana-like. Harness this aspect but keep energy up with noting aloud 1 sensation a second and keep at it for the duration of the whole sit. 

Using noting/labeling aloud just during dullness is not enough for me as sooner rather than later I'm in la-la land emoticon I'm not sitting to be in la-la land. 
instead fire up the entire sit with constant stream of labeling aloud then once timer chimes in do what you please emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/2/20 8:01 AM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
My teacher wants me to sit more at the moment, I get what you're saying though. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/2/20 8:30 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Copy that! 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/2/20 11:44 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
The intention of this log is to report phenomenology/direct experience of my meditation sessions. I will not be mapping or reporting any of this in terms of the nanas. 

Less philosophy & conceptualization, more practice & direct reporting. 

I just wanted to say that I just started to read your log and really appreciate the direct reporting. It is so straightforward. I got some ideas for my log emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/3/20 4:51 PM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
Glad that it could be of service to you somehow. I look forward to reading how your practice unfolds emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/3/20 4:52 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/2/2020 - Evening sit - 35 minutes

Sat outside noting the body senations and sounds and thoughts. Meant to sit longer, but was knocked out my some impatience and lack of motivation to just hold that impatience mindfully. Oh well. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/3/20 4:59 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/3/2020 - Evening sit - 60 minutes

Sat outside. Made a resolution to keep coming back to the breath - an effort to keep the breath in awareness and note other phenomena in the body and mind. 

First 10-15 minutes, there was motivation and momentum and the breath was generally in attention - although the sensations were not sharp.

After the initial 10-15 minutes, I was hit by sleepiness and kept losing conciousness. After about 15-20 minutes of the grogginess, I finally sharpened up.

Holding the breath closely in awareness and noted body sensations, emotions, thoughts, urges, intentions, and impatience, etc.

There was quite a bit of leg pain for a while which I was able to hold and objectify for a while. 

All in all, although there were difficult sensations and experiences, coming back to the breath and being objective left the body/mind feeling generally calm. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/4/20 5:18 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/4/2020 - Evening sit - 60 minutes

Sat outside. Again, the resolution was made to stay with the breath and to note from there.

Concentration was reasonably consistent and I was able to note the breath, body sensations, sounds, urges, thoughts, emotions, etc.

The usual cycle for the sit occured: Normal feeling - gaining momentum - loss of interest - dullness - drowsiness - dreaminess - waking - renewed vigor - impatience - normalness - okayness.

This time around, I only really dozed off once for a short moment. The usual stuff that takes 40 minutes took about half as long. Most of the sit was spent towards the end of the chain I laid out above: sat with feelings of light impatience, normalness/okayness, feelings like nothing much was happening. Kept up a near constant stream of noting/breath awareness. At some point, recognizing the feeling of boredom, I renewed my interest/vigor as this is territory that I don't get to sit with as much.

Not much in the way of pain or physical discomfort today.

Good sit all in all.  

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/5/20 4:28 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/5/2020 - Evening sit - 60 Minutes

The resolution was made to stay with the breath and to note from there.

Good session over all. Was able to be with the breath to some degree for most of the session and gently note along side. Made sure to use as little effort as I could while also being with whatever arose.

Drowsiness came and went as usual. 

Spent most of the sit just feeling okay with nothing much seeming to happen after around 30 minutes. Kept coming back to the breath. At some point, impatience did arise, but it was welcome as it was interesting to sit with. Like gentle rapids while river tubing. 

Another good sit, all in all. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/6/20 10:36 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/6/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Resolved to stay with the breath and note from there.

Was able to hang out with the breath for most of the sit while noting sounds, body sensations, thoughts, emotions and so on.

Didn't fall asleep this time.

Minimal mind wandering due to hindrances. Most of the sit felt normal. Some impatience - probably due to the large coffee I had beforehand - but I could just hang out with it in the body. Noting sensations of tensions and giddiness in the abdomen, disgust or depression, anxiety or worry, planning & practice thoughts, songs stuck in my head, etc. If the mind wandered, I would bring it back to the breath and do the 7 point breath exercise for a few rounds to sharpen concentration.

Another good sit. It seems like something is slowly shaking loose and there is a sense of momentum.  

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/6/20 11:15 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
6/6/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Resolved to stay with the breath and note from there.

Was able to hang out with the breath for most of the sit while noting sounds, body sensations, thoughts, emotions and so on.

Didn't fall asleep this time.

Minimal mind wandering due to hindrances. Most of the sit felt normal. Some impatience - probably due to the large coffee I had beforehand - but I could just hang out with it in the body. Noting sensations of tensions and giddiness in the abdomen, disgust or depression, anxiety or worry, planning & practice thoughts, songs stuck in my head, etc. If the mind wandered, I would bring it back to the breath and do the 7 point breath exercise for a few rounds to sharpen concentration.

Another good sit. It seems like something is slowly shaking loose and there is a sense of momentum.  
Good work! You have a sense of momentum going.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/8/20 6:53 AM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
Thank you bud!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/8/20 7:05 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/7/2020 - Didn't sit.

In the evening, started to feel depressed - had depressing dreams - woke up depressed. 

6/8/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

There wasn't much momentum or a sense of 'the usual pattern unfolding' in this sit. I woke up feeling depressed/hopeless so that colored the sit.

Tried to maintain concentration/awarenss of the breath at the nostrils similar to the last few sessions, but the mind wasn't having it today. Even consistent noting was a challenge as I kept getting pulled into thoughts. Tried the 7 point breath exercise a few times throughout the sit, after which the mind would quickly slide off the sensations of the nostrils. It was inconsistent all around.

Noting the felt sense of depression in the body, as well as the aversion to it. Noticing how the mind was trying to run away from the feeling by constructing various narratives that either reenforced the deppresive state or departed from the theme.

A bit of restlessness as the sit felt pointless.

Noted body sensations, thoughts, sounds, mental imagery, etc. and tried to practice the acceptance of everything that arose. 

Sat the full 60, and although it was a sit marked by difficulty, the timer seemed to ring rather quickly. 

After the sit - proud I kept with it, but I don't necessarily feel any better for having done it. This residual depressive feeling will probably get processed as the day continues. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/8/20 10:55 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
6/7/2020 - Didn't sit.

In the evening, started to feel depressed - had depressing dreams - woke up depressed. 

6/8/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

There wasn't much momentum or a sense of 'the usual pattern unfolding' in this sit. I woke up feeling depressed/hopeless so that colored the sit.

Tried to maintain concentration/awarenss of the breath at the nostrils similar to the last few sessions, but the mind wasn't having it today. Even consistent noting was a challenge as I kept getting pulled into thoughts. Tried the 7 point breath exercise a few times throughout the sit, after which the mind would quickly slide off the sensations of the nostrils. It was inconsistent all around.

Noting the felt sense of depression in the body, as well as the aversion to it. Noticing how the mind was trying to run away from the feeling by constructing various narratives that either reenforced the deppresive state or departed from the theme.

A bit of restlessness as the sit felt pointless.

Noted body sensations, thoughts, sounds, mental imagery, etc. and tried to practice the acceptance of everything that arose. 

Sat the full 60, and although it was a sit marked by difficulty, the timer seemed to ring rather quickly. 

After the sit - proud I kept with it, but I don't necessarily feel any better for having done it. This residual depressive feeling will probably get processed as the day continues. 
Sorry your sit was so tough. At least, you stayed with the experience. That's something.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/9/20 6:28 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/8/2020 - Evening sit - 20-30 minutes

Noted with my teacher out loud so they could gauge where I am. Lots of energetic swaying which was odd. She guided me to be aware of awareness at the end of the sit, but I am not sure I understand how that is supposed to feel or what I'm looking for. 

6/9/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Used the first 10-15 minutes to concentrate on the breath, then switched to noting.

All around, the sit was marked by spaciness, drowsiness, frustration, anger, hunger, blech.  Not much of a pattern. Sat the last 5 minutes without applying a technique. Still feeling tired and frustrated - my fuse is short this morning. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/10/20 7:27 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/10/2020 - Morning sit - 50 minutes

Tried to keep the breath in awareness and note from there. Mindwandering was strong, and often times I forgot to note. Vivid mental imagery, rumination, imaginings, memories, etc. Points of fear and frustration. Overall, a slightly contracted body. Repeatedly having to come back to the breath/body and start again. 

Decided to open my eyes, drop effort/techniques for the last few minutes of the sit. Tried to experiment the whole 'aware of awareness' concept. Lately it feels like I am just rehashing the same territory during the sits, and experimenting with just letting the attention/awareness open up might help to develop something new. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/10/20 8:06 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hello HK, and bravo.

A few questions that come to mind, which may potentially  add to this awareness thing - or not... Hopefully yes... I think it can be worth meditating on this kind of reflection which can help inflect practice in this new direction you are taking.

If attention is what allows you to note and be mindful,  if attention is what you note through, so to speak, what is it that is aware of the phenomenon of attention ?

Is there anything in your experience which is not always already experienced ? A "non-experienced" experience ? Isn't that a contradiction in terms ?

What is the difference between sensations/impressions which you are not mindful of, and sensations/impressions which you are mindful of ?

How do you know there is a difference ?

And where is all this being known ?

Have fun !

Olivier

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/10/20 8:38 AM as a reply to Olivier.
Olivier:
Hello HK, and bravo.

A few questions that come to mind, which may potentially  add to this awareness thing - or not... Hopefully yes... I think it can be worth meditating on this kind of reflection which can help inflect practice in this new direction you are taking.

If attention is what allows you to note and be mindful,  if attention is what you note through, so to speak, what is it that is aware of the phenomenon of attention ?

Is there anything in your experience which is not always already experienced ? A "non-experienced" experience ? Isn't that a contradiction in terms ?

What is the difference between sensations/impressions which you are not mindful of, and sensations/impressions which you are mindful of ?

How do you know there is a difference ?

And where is all this being known ?

Have fun !

Olivier

Oliver, thanks for these questions. Our mutual teacher Abre is teaching us about looking into awareness of aawareness when being the noter.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/11/20 6:44 AM as a reply to Olivier.
Thank you for the tips Olivier!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/11/20 6:57 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/10/2020 - Evening sit - 35 minutes

Sat outside, noted for a few minutes, but sort of dropped any formal technique.

Explored the auditory field and took it as object. Noticing individual sounds in space, but eventually seeing the sameness of it. Objectifying the broad field itself in a way where distinction between sounds sort of fell away. With distinctions between sounds falling away, the observer-observed distinction started to blur. The auditory field felt 'close', not in a spatial way - but something more personal. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/11/20 7:06 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/11/2020 - Morning sit - 50 minutes

Stayed with the breath and noted from there.

Plenty of mind wandering, sorta tired. Calm body. Noted the usual sounds, sights, thoughts, emotions, etc.

Wanted to sit for an hour, but cut it short because my bladder was about to burst. 

Concentration and sensate clarity need work.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/12/20 9:25 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/11/2020 - Evening sit - 35 minutes

Stayed with the breath and noted from there. Concentration wasn't great. Felt pretty sleepy and switched to noting allowed for most of the session. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/14/20 7:37 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Feeling uninspired at the moment.

Still sitting daily, albeit shorter sessions and less often. 

Sits are generally filled with agitation, impatience, doubts, drowsiness, unwieldy attention. 

Will be updating this log less often for the time being as I focus on keeping practice consistent. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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6/14/20 9:30 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
Feeling uninspired at the moment.

Still sitting daily, albeit shorter sessions and less often. 

Sits are generally filled with agitation, impatience, doubts, drowsiness, unwieldy attention. 

Will be updating this log less often for the time being as I focus on keeping practice consistent. 

Sorry to hear. Does Abre know?

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/14/20 11:21 AM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
It's alright Sam. I don't really feel like bothering her with this as these phases come and go. That's part of life. The important thing is to keep practicing even when inspiration or motivation is lacking.

Like I said, I'll keep sitting daily, I just won't post about it unless I feel called to do so. I might feel better tomorrow and be back to posting every day, who knows?

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/14/20 12:31 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Kenneth talks here about the Essential Nature of Mind and how it cant be seen emoticon apparently not even Buddha can see it emoticon I enjoyed this and would like to try this Mahamudra style meditation as thought by Kenneth. When I listened to it, it reminded me of your teacher asking you to open up to the awareness at the end of each session. This I think she is pointing to.
I might add this to the end of my noting session now that Im mentioning it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-44VxPiQtVg&t=

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/14/20 12:47 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Papa Che Dusko:
Kenneth talks here about the Essential Nature of Mind and how it cant be seen emoticon apparently not even Buddha can see it emoticon I enjoyed this and would like to try this Mahamudra style meditation as thought by Kenneth. When I listened to it, it reminded me of your teacher asking you to open up to the awareness at the end of each session. This I think she is pointing to.
I might add this to the end of my noting session now that Im mentioning it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-44VxPiQtVg&t=

Don't you have to have a teacher give you "pointing Out" instructions to practice Mahamudra Papa Che?

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
6/14/20 1:07 PM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
Sam Gentile:
Papa Che Dusko:
Kenneth talks here about the Essential Nature of Mind and how it cant be seen emoticon apparently not even Buddha can see it emoticon I enjoyed this and would like to try this Mahamudra style meditation as thought by Kenneth. When I listened to it, it reminded me of your teacher asking you to open up to the awareness at the end of each session. This I think she is pointing to.
I might add this to the end of my noting session now that Im mentioning it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-44VxPiQtVg&t=

Don't you have to have a teacher give you "pointing Out" instructions to practice Mahamudra Papa Che?
Ok, it makes more sense after watching the video. You don't need pointing out instructions becauseharacterized  this is not classic Mahamudra. Mahamudra, as taught by my other teacher Mingur Rinpoche can be summed up in the pithy "Don't meditate but dot on't get lost" In other words apply no effort, rest in the nature of mind, but don't wander.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/4/20 7:30 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Still sitting most days (I may skip a day once every 2 weeks or so). I don't think sitting 2 hours a day is a realistic goal for me anymore, or currently at least.

Lately, I have just been feeling burnt out and uninspired by dharma/meditation practice at all. Don't get me wrong, I still think about it all the time because it's the activity that I am most invested in. It feels more like a ball-and-chain; something that I HAVE to do every day or else my teacher will get annoyed that I'm a lazy student or I fear that I'll "back track" or I'll just never "make it" in terms of waking up - so I have to keep sitting. 

Sitting an hour is a huge challenge for me. Sitting even 45 minutes is a challenge. I've slowly been dialing back my sitting durations. Heavy doubts and restlessness assail me and that just seems to be where I have plateaued for the time being. Each sit feels a bit like holding a plank or a wall sit and my metaphorical muscles are shaking.

On the bright side, I've had some good conversations with some people and maybe my current attitude is related to some macro level cycling. If that's the case, this challenging period is where the growth happens if I can continue to sit. It's an opportunity. Sometimes I forget to see it that way. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/4/20 8:07 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Nothing wrong with scaling down the practice time. This ain't an endurance race emoticon I know there are folk here who believe that awakening is not possible without long hours and long retreats. I'm not one of those. 

I think it's good to have a teacher as it does keep us going in a way. But there is no better motivator than our own suffering. This is the main reason we do this for the sake of ending that suffering. 

I look at this practice like the water we drink. At times I don't feel the strong thirst and I drink only a bit. I also notice if I don't drink one whole day I feel dehydrated and don't feel well. So I drink at least once a day. I don't have to drink 60ml but I can drink maybe 30-40ml once a day. I clearly see I do feel better. 
At times the weather is very hot and I'm just feeling utter thirst. It's scorchin hot! I simply desire to drink a lot of water and as often as I can. 
Practice is the same for me. There is either lots of thirst or not so much but daily water, even if just a small cup, makes me feel better as I'm not dehydrated. 

Don't let that guilt towards your teacher be your main motivator. Let the "thirst" be your motivator instead. But do keep "hydrated". Maybe time to let go of the teacher for a while (food for thought). 

emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/4/20 10:42 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
On the bright side, I've had some good conversations with some people and maybe my current attitude is related to some macro level cycling. If that's the case, this challenging period is where the growth happens if I can continue to sit. It's an opportunity. Sometimes I forget to see it that way. 

Yeah!  Normalize it.  It helps.  Even if it doesn't motivate you to practice more just understanding the deeper patterned cause of your outlook, mood & interpretation of practice & life should relieve some pressure.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/9/20 3:18 PM as a reply to Noah D.
Big thank you Noah! You pointed out some really important stuff that was somehow staring me in the face but not being seen. Until we see it, we can't dis-embed from it. 

@Papa Che - I like your water drinking anaology! I'll continue to stay hydrated emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/9/20 4:00 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Trying to figure out how to motivate myself to practice again and being gentle about it.

That said, my short term practice goal is to be better about building more momentum during my sits. This means really engaging in the practice. I have a tendency to sort of half-ass things: part of me wants to practice, and part of me is doubtful/distracted/disinterested.

So how do we squeeze more juice from each session? 

1. Building a better base of calm/centering/concentration at the beginning of the session.

2. Staying on the 'straight and narrow' path: getting better about noting/dis-embedding and not being concerned with personal content. 


1 - So how to go about building a better base? My teacher said "relaxation is half of concentration". At the beginning of our guided sits, she takes time to slowly bring the attention/awareness from the wide field of experience, down to a focus at the nostrils. I usually don't bother with this when I meditate by myself because I like to jump straight into the noting. TMI also lays down similar instructions, but I always ignored them - the irony isn't lost on me. 
Here is where it get's interesting: today (on a whim) I pretended to guide an imaginary person out loud through meditation similar to how my teacher does it. Although I was speaking out loud, I became centered and calm and relaxed in a way that I have not been able to when trying to cultivate samatha in the past. So that awesome! I can note out loud and also practice relaxation/centering/concentration out loud. I'll be sure to incorporate and explore the centering before my sits from now on. It's enjoyable; I get to be my own dharma teacher, guide myself the way I'd want someone else to guide me: patiently, gently, with goodness. So far, I tried this out twice: guiding myself out loud and it worked both times - I was centered, honed in, relaxed, low key enjoying the experience. 

2 - Staying on the straight and narrow path will be a tad tricky. Noting out loud is awesome, but I can't exactly do it when I sit at 5:30 in the morning because my house mates will hear me. I can whisper it, sure, but I have also experimented with speaking slightly louder, with a bit more confidence and that seems to change the energy of the sit in a beneficial way. 
Additionally, my teacher wants me to start 'mapping' a bit (not in a neurotic way). So for now, I'm sorta figuring out my own unique meditational territories and what hindrances to be wary of. At this point, they seem to correspond to the vipassana jhanas.

First territory seems to go really quick: it's sorta the switch from being 'in content' to being aware of content. 

Second territory: white light behind the eyelids turns up gradually as if the sun is emerging from clouds outside and lighting up my room. Generally good concentration, good posture, vibrations in various parts of my body (especially extremities), etc. Second territory starts rather rapidly while getting centered at the beginning of the session and before I even start noting. Generally a feeling of momentum.

Third territory: Tired. Sluggish. Posture droops forward. Things can become murky or unclear. Like being dipped in syrup. Dream-like imagery. The body almost disappears at points as the dreaminess takes over. Difficult emotions and restlessness can arise. Body feels sorta hollow and cold - like the felt sense of depression. Generally a feeling like I lost to momentum from before and feeling bummed. Noting out loud during this territory is helpful. 

Often times, I will cycle between territory 2 and 3 every few minutes. It's interesting to see the changes in posture, the energy levels and how the attention/energy naturally collects in certain areas of the body depending on the territory. I believe that there is a lot more to the third territory above that I am not quite seeing and I am generally curious and excited to explore it more. 


It seems for the time being, I have some skills to cultivate and refine so that's really refreshing. Hopefully some of the inspiration to practice comes back.

emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/9/20 4:17 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:

Additionally, my teacher wants me to start 'mapping' a bit (not in a neurotic way). So for now, I'm sorta figuring out my own unique meditational territories and what hindrances to be wary of. At this point, they seem to correspond to the vipassana jhanas.

First territory seems to go really quick: it's sorta the switch from being 'in content' to being aware of content. 

Second territory: white light behind the eyelids turns up gradually as if the sun is emerging from clouds outside and lighting up my room. Generally good concentration, good posture, vibrations in various parts of my body (especially extremities), etc. Second territory starts rather rapidly while getting centered at the beginning of the session and before I even start noting. Generally a feeling of momentum.

Third territory: Tired. Sluggish. Posture droops forward. Things can become murky or unclear. Like being dipped in syrup. Dream-like imagery. The body almost disappears at points as the dreaminess takes over. Difficult emotions and restlessness can arise. Body feels sorta hollow and cold - like the felt sense of depression. Generally a feeling like I lost to momentum from before and feeling bummed. Noting out loud during this territory is helpful. 

Often times, I will cycle between territory 2 and 3 every few minutes. It's interesting to see the changes in posture, the energy levels and how the attention/energy naturally collects in certain areas of the body depending on the territory. I believe that there is a lot more to the third territory above that I am not quite seeing and I am generally curious and excited to explore it more. 


That's interesting. Did your teacher explain what the advantage of mapping in this way was. I find the territories of my sits evolve over time, so that they are always semi-predictable in the short term, but not in the long term. I have often wondered if there is any advantage to paying attention to the patterns. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/9/20 4:49 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
Trying to figure out how to motivate myself to practice again and being gentle about it.

That said, my short term practice goal is to be better about building more momentum during my sits. This means really engaging in the practice. I have a tendency to sort of half-ass things: part of me wants to practice, and part of me is doubtful/distracted/disinterested.

So how do we squeeze more juice from each session? 

1. Building a better base of calm/centering/concentration at the beginning of the session.

2. Staying on the 'straight and narrow' path: getting better about noting/dis-embedding and not being concerned with personal content. 


1 - So how to go about building a better base? My teacher said "relaxation is half of concentration". At the beginning of our guided sits, she takes time to slowly bring the attention/awareness from the wide field of experience, down to a focus at the nostrils. I usually don't bother with this when I meditate by myself because I like to jump straight into the noting. TMI also lays down similar instructions, but I always ignored them - the irony isn't lost on me. 
Here is where it get's interesting: today (on a whim) I pretended to guide an imaginary person out loud through meditation similar to how my teacher does it. Although I was speaking out loud, I became centered and calm and relaxed in a way that I have not been able to when trying to cultivate samatha in the past. So that awesome! I can note out loud and also practice relaxation/centering/concentration out loud. I'll be sure to incorporate and explore the centering before my sits from now on. It's enjoyable; I get to be my own dharma teacher, guide myself the way I'd want someone else to guide me: patiently, gently, with goodness. So far, I tried this out twice: guiding myself out loud and it worked both times - I was centered, honed in, relaxed, low key enjoying the experience. 

2 - Staying on the straight and narrow path will be a tad tricky. Noting out loud is awesome, but I can't exactly do it when I sit at 5:30 in the morning because my house mates will hear me. I can whisper it, sure, but I have also experimented with speaking slightly louder, with a bit more confidence and that seems to change the energy of the sit in a beneficial way. 
Additionally, my teacher wants me to start 'mapping' a bit (not in a neurotic way). So for now, I'm sorta figuring out my own unique meditational territories and what hindrances to be wary of. At this point, they seem to correspond to the vipassana jhanas.

First territory seems to go really quick: it's sorta the switch from being 'in content' to being aware of content. 

Second territory: white light behind the eyelids turns up gradually as if the sun is emerging from clouds outside and lighting up my room. Generally good concentration, good posture, vibrations in various parts of my body (especially extremities), etc. Second territory starts rather rapidly while getting centered at the beginning of the session and before I even start noting. Generally a feeling of momentum.

Third territory: Tired. Sluggish. Posture droops forward. Things can become murky or unclear. Like being dipped in syrup. Dream-like imagery. The body almost disappears at points as the dreaminess takes over. Difficult emotions and restlessness can arise. Body feels sorta hollow and cold - like the felt sense of depression. Generally a feeling like I lost to momentum from before and feeling bummed. Noting out loud during this territory is helpful. 

Often times, I will cycle between territory 2 and 3 every few minutes. It's interesting to see the changes in posture, the energy levels and how the attention/energy naturally collects in certain areas of the body depending on the territory. I believe that there is a lot more to the third territory above that I am not quite seeing and I am generally curious and excited to explore it more. 


It seems for the time being, I have some skills to cultivate and refine so that's really refreshing. Hopefully some of the inspiration to practice comes back.

emoticon


This sounds really good to my ears mate! Look at it like going to the gym or similar stuff. I'm now in the gym for 45-60 minutes and that's the time I do this profoundly. Once I'm done practicing well, I feel good and don't bother much about it for the rest of the day. I live all the other aspects of my life; friends, hobby, food ... etc ... I don't go all day around thinking about the gym but I do feel better from doing some weight lifting that's for sure emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/9/20 6:21 PM as a reply to Martin.
Hey Martin, the advantage for me is that I notice certain hindrances seem to pop up during different times in the sit which correspond to those 'territories'. Getting familiar with our own practice cycles and our own reactivity can help us to navigate each session with a bit more understanding or to employ a technique to keep the momentum going.

Note: when I describe my practice to my teacher, I don't use map terminology or get neurotic with regards to stages or maps or models trying to figure out where I am. I describe the overall trajectory of the sits and the issues that I faced in the two weeks between our talks. So when she asks me to start mapping, I am sorta reluctant to, but I can understand how seeing these small patterns can be beneficial.

For example, if I enter a tired sort of dissolution state, I can realize this and continue the string of mindfulness by noting out loud.

Or if suddenly I feel really depressed and start to play sad mental narrratives, I can realize I am feeling sorry for myself, ground myself in the felt sense of the body, and continue to note without being lost in content. 

It's not about getting strivey and absolutely trying to figure out which nana I'm in - because that habit is very unrewarding and a distraction overall. 


@Papa Che - Well said as usual! Still working on the profound engagement during the formal sessions emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/9/20 6:50 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Thanks!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/9/20 9:35 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
That said, my short term practice goal is to be better about building more momentum during my sits. This means really engaging in the practice. I have a tendency to sort of half-ass things: part of me wants to practice, and part of me is doubtful/distracted/disinterested.

I'm glad I found your log because I find some similarities with my own experience.
I have the same tendencies + sometimes fear of not doing it right/Not being able that pushes me to not even practice or practice less.

Second territory: white light behind the eyelids turns up gradually as if the sun is emerging from clouds outside and lighting up my room. Generally good concentration, good posture, vibrations in various parts of my body (especially extremities), etc. Second territory starts rather rapidly while getting centered at the beginning of the session and before I even start noting. Generally a feeling of momentum.

Interestingly, I had the same experience for the 1st time yesterday. I was in the dark but it felt like I had a lamp in the room, white light rising on my eyelids. Is it a common experience within meditation practitioners?

Afterward, I was a bit overwhelmed by the sheer number of sensations appearing and trying to notice everything. (I don't really note, just try to "look" at it and notice it carefully).
It made me fall in a kind of trance, somewhat related to your third territory.

Again, happy to have found your log and use it for my 1st comment ;-)

Wish you all a nice day

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/10/20 1:19 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
You are already profound on cushion mate! I was more suggesting not to strive and beat yourself off cushion emoticon let your life be your life and not some Monastery with moral codes and rules. 

Just like Concentration/Focus can go from sharp to very diffused so can Profound Engagement go from loose to deep. None of these opposites are better or worse. They change according to Anicca and cycling states and stages and all is part of This experience. 

There can be profound engagement that tracks fast arisings and passing of different sensations without going deep into each of those and the other way around , engaging one sensation and going deeper into it (like a changing itch and you stay with it). 
Both of these are Awake in This, meaning not lost in content. 
And you seem to be doing both approaches and more

You are doing fantastic Kid! emoticon 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/10/20 6:55 AM as a reply to SushiK.
Hey Sushi, I'm glad this log could be of use to you. The experience of light appearing behind the eyelids and growing more intense is a very common meditation phenomenon. You're in good company. 

Many people associate the light phenomenon with an increase in concentration and also the rapidly changing sensations as you've mentioned.

Part of the advantage of noting with labels (silently or out loud) over just noticing is to avoid getting lost in a trance. I'm not sure what your actual experience of 'trance' is, but when I am in the 3rd territory I mentioned above, I will be less likely to tune out if I make an effort to label out loud with my voice. If the trance you describe causes you to tune out completely (similar to forgetting the meditation object & mind wandering) then it might be worth it to employ a technique to keep the string of noticing going. Best of luck to you!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/10/20 7:05 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
6/10/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Spent 10-15 minutes getting centered and concentrated. Felt pleasant and relaxed, but not quite as concentrated as yesterday - probably due to being tired. White light behind the eyes growing more intense, a sense of heaviness on the cushion like I'm firmly rooted to the spot.

Switched to mental noting and quickly shifted to noting aloud. Right away, the light disappeared, things got murky, and confusing. restlessness, and especially dullness/drowsiness set in. Most of the sit was spent trying to note through the dozing process, noting dreams, noting the waking, the lack of energy. Shifting back and forth between territories 2 & 3, watching the energy levels shift.

Later in the sit, resltessness and boredom started to take over. Doubts grew stronger. I continue to note out loud. 

Overall, a reasonably good session in terms of keeping momentum. Sorta dropped the noting here and there while dozing off, quick to pick it back up. First full hour I've sat in about 2 weeks. 


@Papa - thank you for the encouragement. Glad to see you back on here and logging again!  

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/10/20 8:28 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Watching your own mental and behavioral patterns, not just during your sits, could become a habit  emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/10/20 8:54 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Just as a funny aside, I've often found that tuning out completely while in the third territory you mention was often the quickest way for me to move into EQ. Or "fourth territory", sorry :p

Chris' "not just on the cushion" remark. Isn't it the very goal of meditation practice to move into daily life ?

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/10/20 9:46 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Aye aye, sir. I'll be sure to be generally mindful throughout the day when not formally practicing, taking special care to notice where I get triggered and which 'World-view' or 'realm' I might fall into at any given moment. 


@Olivier: Interesting perspective about zoning out. Most folks tend to emphasize some form of continuous awareness to move through the yucky stages so I'll probably continue to cultivate that, but your perspective is worth consideration. Also, I do practice off cushion as much as I remember to - it's just at this point in time I am emphasizing my formal sessions in terms of progression reporting emoticon 

 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/10/20 12:07 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
Trying to figure out how to motivate myself to practice again and being gentle about it.

That said, my short term practice goal is to be better about building more momentum during my sits. This means really engaging in the practice. I have a tendency to sort of half-ass things: part of me wants to practice, and part of me is doubtful/distracted/disinterested.



So how do we squeeze more juice from each session? 

1. Building a better base of calm/centering/concentration at the beginning of the session.

2. Staying on the 'straight and narrow' path: getting better about noting/dis-embedding and not being concerned with personal content. 


1 - So how to go about building a better base? My teacher said "relaxation is half of concentration". At the beginning of our guided sits, she takes time to slowly bring the attention/awareness from the wide field of experience, down to a focus at the nostrils. I usually don't bother with this when I meditate by myself because I like to jump straight into the noting. TMI also lays down similar instructions, but I always ignored them - the irony isn't lost on me. 
Here is where it get's interesting: today (on a whim) I pretended to guide an imaginary person out loud through meditation similar to how my teacher does it. Although I was speaking out loud, I became centered and calm and relaxed in a way that I have not been able to when trying to cultivate samatha in the past. So that awesome! I can note out loud and also practice relaxation/centering/concentration out loud. I'll be sure to incorporate and explore the centering before my sits from now on. It's enjoyable; I get to be my own dharma teacher, guide myself the way I'd want someone else to guide me: patiently, gently, with goodness. So far, I tried this out twice: guiding myself out loud and it worked both times - I was centered, honed in, relaxed, low key enjoying the experience. 

2 - Staying on the straight and narrow path will be a tad tricky. Noting out loud is awesome, but I can't exactly do it when I sit at 5:30 in the morning because my house mates will hear me. I can whisper it, sure, but I have also experimented with speaking slightly louder, with a bit more confidence and that seems to change the energy of the sit in a beneficial way. 
Additionally, my teacher wants me to start 'mapping' a bit (not in a neurotic way). So for now, I'm sorta figuring out my own unique meditational territories and what hindrances to be wary of. At this point, they seem to correspond to the vipassana jhanas.

First territory seems to go really quick: it's sorta the switch from being 'in content' to being aware of content. 

Second territory: white light behind the eyelids turns up gradually as if the sun is emerging from clouds outside and lighting up my room. Generally good concentration, good posture, vibrations in various parts of my body (especially extremities), etc. Second territory starts rather rapidly while getting centered at the beginning of the session and before I even start noting. Generally a feeling of momentum.

Third territory: Tired. Sluggish. Posture droops forward. Things can become murky or unclear. Like being dipped in syrup. Dream-like imagery. The body almost disappears at points as the dreaminess takes over. Difficult emotions and restlessness can arise. Body feels sorta hollow and cold - like the felt sense of depression. Generally a feeling like I lost to momentum from before and feeling bummed. Noting out loud during this territory is helpful. 

Often times, I will cycle between territory 2 and 3 every few minutes. It's interesting to see the changes in posture, the energy levels and how the attention/energy naturally collects in certain areas of the body depending on the territory. I believe that there is a lot more to the third territory above that I am not quite seeing and I am generally curious and excited to explore it more. 


It seems for the time being, I have some skills to cultivate and refine so that's really refreshing. Hopefully some of the inspiration to practice comes back.

emoticon
Its good to see you back and with a great short term goal. Good to see you noting aloud and your early success with it. I agree; relaxation is the key. I find that when I am releaxed, the noting goes better.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/14/20 7:18 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Been meditating for about an hour a day the last week.

The sense of momentum during sits isn't there for me at the moment - or maybe I'm refusing to see it due to doubts.

The sits usually end in a state of boredom/restlessness/disinterest/lack of motivation/doubts. 

Today's hour sit started off well enough: there was a sense of being withdrawn from the outer world and engaged with the inner world. I was inspired to sit. It was sorta fun. Then eventually, doubts, stress, and boredom crept up. After the sit, just feeling extremely frustrated and angsty about everything in terms of practice and life specifics. Currently my inner child is having a tantrum. Not sure where all that internal turmoil is coming from when I'm just trying to patiently note sensory phenomena. I'm having trouble establishing equanimity - I think I'm at the doorstep, but having trouble passing throught the doorway. 

I suppose the only way out of this is through it - and I am taking it patiently today at least. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/14/20 7:31 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
Been meditating for about an hour a day the last week.

The sense of momentum during sits isn't there for me at the moment - or maybe I'm refusing to see it due to doubts.

The sits usually end in a state of boredom/restlessness/disinterest/lack of motivation/doubts. 

Today's hour sit started off well enough: there was a sense of being withdrawn from the outer world and engaged with the inner world. I was inspired to sit. It was sorta fun. Then eventually, doubts, stress, and boredom crept up. After the sit, just feeling extremely frustrated and angsty about everything in terms of practice and life specifics. Currently my inner child is having a tantrum. Not sure where all that internal turmoil is coming from when I'm just trying to patiently note sensory phenomena. I'm having trouble establishing equanimity - I think I'm at the doorstep, but having trouble passing throught the doorway. 

I suppose the only way out of this is through it - and I am taking it patiently today at least. 

hey HIbiscus,

my two cents worth, with all international exchange standards applicable, which means i owe you money for offering my two cents worth, technically speaking, is: Mucho Shargrol Of Course--- https://shargrolpostscompilation.blogspot.com/p/blog-page.html#transitiontoeq ---
and forget about Equanimity, and accept the desert life with curiousity: simply look around during your sits, with the thread of technique dry, and see how completely fucked you actually are, all things considered. "Do" this gently. Appy, lather, rinse, repeat. If nothing else, your hair will be extremely clean.

love, tim

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/14/20 12:12 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
Been meditating for about an hour a day the last week.

The sense of momentum during sits isn't there for me at the moment - or maybe I'm refusing to see it due to doubts.

The sits usually end in a state of boredom/restlessness/disinterest/lack of motivation/doubts. 

Today's hour sit started off well enough: there was a sense of being withdrawn from the outer world and engaged with the inner world. I was inspired to sit. It was sorta fun. Then eventually, doubts, stress, and boredom crept up. After the sit, just feeling extremely frustrated and angsty about everything in terms of practice and life specifics. Currently my inner child is having a tantrum. Not sure where all that internal turmoil is coming from when I'm just trying to patiently note sensory phenomena. I'm having trouble establishing equanimity - I think I'm at the doorstep, but having trouble passing throught the doorway. 

I suppose the only way out of this is through it - and I am taking it patiently today at least. 
I'm sorry you're struggling. You sound similar to my sits of July 9-12 where I had all of the above and intense restlessness that I couldn't sit in my meditation chair. The only way is to meditate through it. You will get there to equanimity.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/23/20 12:16 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Sitting a bit less lately. Work this week has been an absolute bear as I am covering for a coworker on vacation this week. I've dialed it back to 30-60 minutes of sitting a day (in 1 or 2 sits) and been experimenting with sitting (no timer; no goal) in the dark before laying down for bed at night. 

Due to the larger amount of responsibility I have at the moment, my sessions have been marked by a tangle of work/planning-thoughts and a stressed/contracted/agitated body. Depending on my attitude, sitting in the midst of it feels like no big deal - it's an opportunity to explore stress and fear and discomfort and doubts: surfing a wave of sorts. Other times, my attitude isn't great and I don't see the opportunity for what it is - I'll jump off the cushion and start my work day an hour early instead. 

The good thing is, even with the stress and dealing with the reacitivity of some of my more melo-dramatic coworkers, I am able to respond in a way I find appropriate. 

I'd like to find the internal tenacity to be better about sitting for my daily minimum even with work responsibilities, and logging my sessions here. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/23/20 11:15 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
Sitting a bit less lately. Work this week has been an absolute bear as I am covering for a coworker on vacation this week. I've dialed it back to 30-60 minutes of sitting a day (in 1 or 2 sits) and been experimenting with sitting (no timer; no goal) in the dark before laying down for bed at night. 

Due to the larger amount of responsibility I have at the moment, my sessions have been marked by a tangle of work/planning-thoughts and a stressed/contracted/agitated body. Depending on my attitude, sitting in the midst of it feels like no big deal - it's an opportunity to explore stress and fear and discomfort and doubts: surfing a wave of sorts. Other times, my attitude isn't great and I don't see the opportunity for what it is - I'll jump off the cushion and start my work day an hour early instead. 

The good thing is, even with the stress and dealing with the reacitivity of some of my more melo-dramatic corworkers, I am able to respond in a way I find appropriate. 

I'd like to find the internal tenacity to be better about sitting for my daily minimum even with work responsibilities, and logging my sessions here. 

Good to see you here my friend! Been thinking about you. Guess you can't do much  about having to cover for your co-worker.
I'd like to find the internal tenacity to be better about sitting for my daily minimum even with work responsibilities, and logging my sessions here. 

Do it!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/23/20 11:36 AM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
I read your log every day, bud. Glad to see that you're so consistent and dedicated. emoticon Inspiring stuff!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/23/20 11:41 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/23/2020 - Lunch break sit - 30 minutes

Only practiced noting with mental labels, coming back to the breath when distracted.
The sit started rather tense - many planning thoughts and the body was contracted.
Momentum increased - there was motivation and faith in the noting of various mental and physical phenomena - white light appearing.
The body slowly relaxed, the energy descended. Towards the end of the sit, things were dreamy and the mind was scattered. Doubts and impatience abound. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/23/20 4:03 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/23/2020 - Post work sit - 30 minutes

Practiced concentration by focusing on sensations at the nose tip. I think I forced it a bit too much as the body was rather tense and frustration eventually took over (also partially due to the cup of caffeinated tea I had before sitting). I wanted the sensations to be vivid and I was trying to be interested and engaged with the nose, no matter what sensations were occuring. Bright lights in the visual field and many distractions in terms of practice thoughts, body sensations, sounds, etc.  

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/24/20 6:56 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/24/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Method: Noting with mental labels - trying to anchor awareness on the breath and note departures from there.

Noted planning thoughts, dreamy mental images, song-loops, worries, frustrations, practice thoughts, future thoughts, past thoughts, etc.

Physically, the body was contracted in various ways which changed as the sit unfolded. Noting bodily discomfort, tingling, pressure, pain, touching, twitching, restlesssness, etc.

Overall the sit was sorta dull and difficult. I dropped the noting many times as the mind got distracted and lost in thought. At the 30 minute mark, I was so restless that I almost got up: recognizing this, I anchored in the felt sense of restlessness in the body. Eventually, some equanimity developed and the body relaxed a little. The goal at that point was to keep coming back to the noting/breath even though the rest of the sit was marked by boredeom, lack of momentum, and restlessness. 

 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/24/20 9:04 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hey, you're doing it! Good work!

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/25/20 7:52 AM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
Thank you Sam! emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/25/20 7:53 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/25/2020 - Morning sit - 30 minutes

A sit similar to yesterday - I'd describe it the same. emoticon

Didn't have as much time to sit as I have to be somewhere this morning. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/25/20 7:49 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/25/2020 - Evening sit - 60 minutes

Don't feel like typing too much.

Overall, it was a sit characterized by quite a bit of bodily drooping, a slightly distracted mind at points, but overall strong, curious mindfulness and acceptance. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/26/20 7:30 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/26/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Method: Noting with mental labels - trying to anchor awareness on the breath and note departures from there.

Many thoughts about uncomfortable situations, fantasy, planning thoughts, mental images, songs, etc.

The body slumped over as the session progressed, a lot of tightness/contractions of the abdomen, tingling, at one point there was an almost orgasmic wave of pleasure as the abdomen rose and feel - but overall a flavor of stress & fear.

The sit started off well enough - then became sleepy/dreamy - then came boredom and impatience - then came a second wave of motivation.

Overall: the sit dealt with fear-laden scenarios and a tight body. Interesting to see the mind's aversion to exploring the felt sense of fear int he body as if it's somehow off limits. Last night there was an acceptance and patience with arising phenomena, and that has persisted through this morning. The sit itself wasn't calm or clear, but that's not an issue. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/26/20 3:17 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/26/2020 - Early afternoon sit w/ friend - 30 minutes

Another sleepy sit. Mostly freestyle noted. Don't have much to say about this sit otherwise as there wasn't much in the way of progression or momentum. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/26/20 4:51 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/26/2020 - Second afternoon sit outside - 30 minutes

Freestyle noting.

Felt less drowsy, more jumpy/fear reactions, sat in the warm sun sweating with bugs crawling on me - not really much of an issue with any of it. Noted sounds, body sensations, plannng thoughts and fear. 

Not much in the way of progression except for the fact that I was a bit impatient towards the end of the sit.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/27/20 7:18 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/27/2020 - Morning sit/walk/sit - 2 hours total: 40 minutes each

First sit - noted the breath ('rising'/'falling') and any diversion from there. The sit started with good sense of motivation, light, strong mindfulness, etc. Eventually the sit became a bit drowsy and dreamy. Impatience was not really an issue, overall felt pretty relaxed. I noted mental images, planning, narratives, sounds, and body sensations such as heaviness, pressure, tingling, vibrations, etc. 

Walking portion - noted 'lifting/moving/placing'. The energy and concentration increased during the walking. Noted teh visual field, different thoughts, urges, etc. At times, the noting speed would increase and I could note lifting-lifting-moving-moving-placing along with sounds and sights or other body sensations. The walking portion eventually got to be a bit drowsy as well.

Second sit - After 10-15 minutes, I was starting to dose off. The entire sit was sort of dreamy/sleepy thereafter. I'd do my best to note when I remembered upon waking or even while dozing slightly. There wasn't much aversion to the dullness (usually I fight it and consider it 'bad' or 'unproductive'). This is was relaxing and impatience was minimal.

Overall: it wasn't my intention to do a 2 hour session, but I woke up an hour earlier than my alarm. It wasn't a perfect session with strong mindfulness, but there was a sense of ease and okayness, of allowing whatever was going and not getting impatient or fighting with it. Now that the sit is through, there is a sense of disappointment like I should have somehow 'pushed more'. 

 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/28/20 3:18 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/27/2020 - Afternoon sit - 30 minutes

Sat outside and noted. Got distracted quite a bit.


Evening session - 45ish minutes with Teacher

Had a total melt down and started crying. Between stressful life shit and the stern discussion with my teacher before the sit, I just felt utterly dejected. This set off some emotional chain reaction: I was silently sobbing, could barely breathe, it felt like the chair was rapidly spinning and I was visited by every one of my doubts and frustrations about life. How limited I feel. Every healthy activity I take on is somehow supposed to complete me so I finally feel worthy, but ultimately doesn't fix the core issue. Every petty rationalization or stressor I carry with me is somehow supposed to protect me. The body was just contracted and hot and I was self concious about crying on a video chat, feeling like less of a man for it. How I feel like I'm stuck on a hamster wheel and unable to get ahead in life, somehow picking up the pace and still falling behind. I'm tired. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/28/20 6:33 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
7/27/2020 - Afternoon sit - 30 minutes

Sat outside and noted. Got distracted quite a bit.


Evening session - 45ish minutes with Teacher

Had a total melt down and started crying. Between stressful life shit and the stern discussion with my teacher before the sit, I just felt utterly dejected. This set off some emotional chain reaction: I was silently sobbing, could barely breathe, it felt like the chair was rapidly spinning and I was visited by every one of my doubts and frustrations about life. How limited I feel. Every healthy activity I take on is somehow supposed to complete me so I finally feel worthy, but ultimately doesn't fix the core issue. Every petty rationalization or stressor I carry with me is somehow supposed to protect me. The body was just contracted and hot and I was self concious about crying on a video chat, feeling like less of a man for it. How I feel like I'm stuck on a hamster wheel and unable to get ahead in life, somehow picking up the pace and stiff falling behind. I'm tired. 

hey HK, 

total melt down is generally auspicious in most traditions, like a mala breaking, only more emotionally healing. You've been grinding hard, dry dry work both on the mat and in challenging life circumstances, and there is a point where the longing for juice, for fruits, and the sense of hamster wheel dryness extending forever, collide prioperly, and tears are actually one of the better outcomes of that collision.

"Melt down" is a great way to describe certain moments of spiritual realization, as well as emotional breakdown: something melts, something hard yields into fluidity. The relief of an emotional, tearful meltdown is a taste of insight or realization, in its way, or at the very least a good working metaphor of sign for it, to symbolize the real melting of the boundaries and rigidities of our samsaric self.

Meanwhile, it feels like shit. dry shit. Exhausting, endless shit, with no relief in sight. My advice would be to pick up the pace and fall further behind anyway. This would be in accordance with certain traditions.

On second thought, fuck it, fuck the hamster wheel and every fucking do-good-for-shit thing we're supposed to be doing. Let's go out and get shit-faced drunk and pick up some women at the bar and contract fatal sexually transmitted diseases, one each. Is Friday night good for you?

love, tim

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/28/20 9:06 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Every healthy activity I take on is somehow supposed to complete me so I finally feel worthy, but ultimately doesn't fix the core issue. Every petty rationalization or stressor I carry with me is somehow supposed to protect me. The body was just contracted and hot and I was self concious about crying on a video chat, feeling like less of a man for it. How I feel like I'm stuck on a hamster wheel and unable to get ahead in life, somehow picking up the pace and stiff falling behind. I'm tired. 

I, too, think your breakdown is actually a benevolent development. It's pointing to something, just like your words above point to something. Do you have any thoughts on what that might be?

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/28/20 11:25 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Do you have any thoughts on what that might be?

"If you're looking for a solution, you're not looking at the problem." 

It's a signal that something needs to be ackowledged and investigated. I need to sit with that material without trying to figure it out.

Beyond that, I don't really expect anything to have changed due to that melt down - it didn't solve anything.  

I have a feeling you'd say something along the lines of "You can drop all of that and just be human".  

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/28/20 11:34 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Based on the way you used words, it may be you're expecting help from outside, from something or someone that can "save" you. Your breakdown may be a glimmer of the realization that redemption, salvation, what-have-you, doesn't come from outside. Maybe it's also reflective of the realization that it's okay to feel scared, weak, and maybe helpless against all the forces we perceive to be coming at us, all seemingly outside of us. Thus the constant, exhausting struggle to avoid them. That struggle is a treadmill. A tiring treadmill.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/28/20 4:47 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
You're not entirely off: I look for people here to reassure me so that I know I'm on the right track in my practice or life.

I'm also hoping that the 'karma machine' or universe will somehow reward me for how much time I sit and give me path shifts and make my life easier.

There is a sense that I'm not in charge of awakening and so I just need to wait it out and hope for serendipitous intervention to move it along. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/28/20 6:02 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/28/2020 - Evening sit - 35 minutes

Practiced concentration at the recommendation of my teacher who thinks I may not be getting 'deep' enough during my sits since I often report I'm somewhat lackadaisical.

I'm not really a fan of concentration meditation as I often find it boring so going into the sit, I was not enthusiastic.

I practiced focus on the breath. Started attention/awarness wide and gradually transitioned to the nostrils. The advice I was given was not to focus too hard on the nostrils or any particular sensations, but aim to 'know' what part of the breath is occuring with attention focused at the nose. I was able to hold the breath for short periods at first, gradually able to hold the breath in attention for longer periods (say 1-3 miutes) before gross distractions pulled me away. At times, thoughts became wispy. 

I was also directed to go back to the breath no matter what - even if it made me more tense, even if I found it boring, etc. A few times, I became aware of intense doubts or somehow trying to 'make' the jhanas happen or other expectations, but returned to the breath instead of getting caught up.

From here-on out, I'll be working more directly on concentration during my sits, and switching over to noting after setting up a good base. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/29/20 12:22 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
7/28/2020 - Evening sit - 35 minutes

Practiced concentration at the recommendation of my teacher who thinks I may not be getting 'deep' enough during my sits since I often report I'm somewhat lackadaisical.

I'm not really a fan of concentration meditation as I often find it boring so going into the sit, I was not enthusiastic.

I practiced focus on the breath. Started attention/awarness wide and gradually transitioned to the nostrils. The advice I was given was not to focus too hard on the nostrils or any particular sensations, but aim to 'know' what part of the breath is occuring with attention focused at the nose. I was able to hold the breath for short periods at first, gradually able to hold the breath in attention for longer periods (say 1-3 miutes) before gross distractions pulled me away. At times, thoughts became wispy. 

I was also directed to go back to the breath no matter what - even if it made me more tense, even if I found it boring, etc. A few times, I became aware of intense doubts or somehow trying to 'make' the jhanas happen or other expectations, but returned to the breath instead of getting caught up.

From here-on out, I'll be working more directly on concentration during my sits, and switching over to noting after setting up a good base. 

HK, I think the fact that you find the breath tedious or boring or tension-inducing, is very revealing. The breath is the ultimate freedom vehicle: beyond our control (no self), useful only when transitory (stop it, and you're dead), and utterly enmeshed with the entirety of the suffering material world of pain and pleasure, life and death, dukha and cessation. You can get all the work of any technique done on one breath; heaven and hell, all of it, onee breath. Watch it come in no matter what, arising despite anything you think or feel. Follow it down, sinking through and into this body that hurts and rejoices, fears and aspires. Let whatever it is that it does be, in that pause at the bottom, that transition, and let it go out as pure release, as the return of what you were given to the mystery of what gave, in a different form, heavier on CO2, better for the plants. Breathe for the plants! Sit until all sentient plants are saved. Serve our earthly flora!

Seriously, man, if you're seeing the breath as some kind of dry prerequsite to Something Else, you're going to be fucking miserable.

love, tim

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/29/20 9:20 AM as a reply to Tim Farrington.
Hey Tim, your last statement about the breath being a prerequisite to Something Else is a useful pointer: thank you. 

The direct experience of the breath in this very moment is pretty mundane. We can wax poetic about the breath and the flora and how we all respire and therefore all share a common thread, but the breath itself is mundane. Just some sensations of pressure, tension, tingling, rushing, etc. All very normal and sorta boring. 

That's just how it is. I conceptualize meditation as 'mind training' however, and if we are training this mind to 'sit and stay', then it's okay if there is some resistance and some effort in order to have it behave. I don't think it's the attitude that needs fixing: the mind should be trained to follow through even if the attitude isn't one of enthusiasm or appreciation. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/29/20 9:13 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/29/2020 - Morning sit - 30 minutes

Another concentration sit based on the breath at the nostrils. More mind wandering than yesterday's session. I cut the sit short after 30 minutes had passed as work is stressful and I wanted to get a head start.

I've noticed that a good handle is to put effort into noticing the beginings and endings of the breaths. If this is done, then I can hang with the breath for a while. The big hindrance today was future thought/worries about work and also doubts related to the meditation itself.

I hope to be able to sit this afternoon for an hour so I can practice more concentration and noting. We will see: work is wearing me out lately with an increase in hours and work load. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/29/20 3:47 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
The direct experience of the breath in this very moment is pretty mundane.

This is not the best way to look at it. Your breath is your life. If you've been thinking about it this way then you may be creating a self-fulfilling prophecy.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/29/20 4:51 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Hey Chris, do you have any helpful tips for coaxing out enjoyment? To me, thinking 'breath is life' while breathing isn't watching the breath. As I said, the breath itself is sorta mundane so getting absorbed into it the way people get absorbed during TV shows seems like a long way off. At this point in time, there is a low level enjoyment with the challenge sorta like playing 'ball in a cup' but taking it a bit too seriously. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/29/20 7:13 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Here's what I would offer: follow your breath.

Be gently enthralled with what's happening as you breathe. What's moving? What's not moving? What happens at the peak of the in-breath? The bottom of the out-breath? What changes in feeling tone can you find as the breath goes in and out? Can you follow the breath without trying to control it? What happens in your head when the breath is deep? When it's shallow?

Your breath contains everything you need in order to awaken. It sends oxygen to your body, relieves you of carbon dioxide, and gives you life. It's an object you can investigate, penetrate, and gain insight with.

How could it not be fascinating?

I challenge you to fall in love with it.

emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/29/20 10:09 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
My  2 cents as a very beginner.

Is your teacher adamant about following the breath at the tip of the nose?

I get more "interesting" sensations (Which by virtuous cycle makes it easier to focus) when checking the breath at the abdomen, especially at the end of the out-breath and the period in between breath (My work should be to be as focus on the beginning and end of the in-breath).

I usually start with the abdomen to go "in the zone" and then switch to the tip of the nose.

And to be more fascinated by the breath, any chance you could practice freediving? Apnea underwater is one of my favorite place to be emoticon

Otherwise, you could try some breathing exercises (Wim Hof and so on).

Have a nice day

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/30/20 4:16 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
Here's what I would offer: follow your breath.

Be gently enthralled with what's happening as you breathe. What's moving? What's not moving? What happens at the peak of the in-breath? The bottom of the out-breath? What changes in feeling tone can you find as the breath goes in and out? Can you follow the breath without trying to control it? What happens in your head when the breath is deep? When it's shallow?

Your breath contains everything you need in order to awaken. It sends oxygen to your body, relieves you of carbon dioxide, and gives you life. It's an object you can investigate, penetrate, and gain insight with.

How could it not be fascinating?

I challenge you to fall in love with it.

emoticon
+1

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/30/20 4:23 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Thank you for the tips and inspiration! I'll have to experiment and practice with this stuff the next few weeks and see what comes of it emoticon

@Sushi - My teacher wants me to narrow down the the breath at the nostrils, but first starting with the felt experience body and breathing sensations throughout the body. Eventually the nostrils become the focus once some momentum is gained. As far as free diving: I don't go to any large bodies of water on a regular basis so that's one thing I probably will not end up trying! 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/30/20 4:41 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/29/2020 - Evening sit - 45 minutes

Sat outside in the hot sun, on the dry grass. That attitude before the sit wasn't great as I had just finished a stressful work day and was exhausted. 
I started with concentration for 10-15 minutes and then switched to noting out loud (whispered). The vocalization helped me stay on track. I dealt with discomfort due to heat, ants and flies crawling all over me, and the hard ground against my legs. 
After the sit, I felt a bit dejected. I decided that the next sit, I'd incorporate more spoken labels to help me stay on track.

7/29/2020 - Bedtime sit - 1 hour

After the evening sit, I felt dejected and frustrated. After dinner and a shower, I was really motivated to sit and excited to do so. Not sure where the shift in attitude came from, but I decided to sit for an hour when I intended to sit less.

Again, worked on concentration at the beginning of the sit. This time, trying to find ways to enjoy the breath. Trying to get curious about and take note of certain points in the breath. Exploring the gamut between mind-wandering and that feeling of being 'close' to the breath, where the breath feels large and I feel like I'm in a cocoon and the outside world falls away. Switched to noting after 15-25 minutes and spoked the labels out loud. The session was smooth for a while, I was motivated and went through the usual drowsy territory, but towards the end of the sit, I was hit by extreme jump-off-the-cushion impatience which I was able to hang with for a little while.

In my next sit, I'll continue to work on concentration. I think looking at the beginnings and endings of the respective breaths is helpful, as well as which breaths are longer or shorter or the force with which the body breathes any particular breath. I'll continue using the whispered labels as well since the extra effort involved with speaking helps me navigate the dreamy territory, makes forgetting more difficult, and helps me create a thread of noting through the sit. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/30/20 5:31 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
emoticon

HK, I was missing Papa Che's input on this thread, and wrote to him on email. He replied and said he had been following the thread and offered the following:
Papa Che

Kid is in a stage of disillusionment with the practice and all. His teacher cant help him. Chris cant help him. Buddha cant help him. And certainly I cant help him. 

He has passed the stage where he can go back to enjoying anything in life. He will however go back to life, stop practicing and do all sorts of stuff young people do and should do. And he will be fine. But he will not be able to enjoy it as he is in the state of Dissolution (and the rest of Dukkha Nanas).

He needs to come to he point in life where he sees that he can not stay in this Dukkha Nana stage and that there is no way back into enjoyable meditation, or being lost in IGNORING the practice  emoticon He needs to come to that point where he really REALISE that the only way is the way forward, the way of this practice of noting my own experience moment by moment 1-10 sensations a second in a body-relaxed manner and with heaps of Acceptance. And you do this not because you want to "attain" to something but because you realise you are lost in a vast ocean of dukkha and the only thing you have on hand is that little raft held together with rotten ropes. And you hold onto it. And you sail without sense of direction or hope. There is only that raft in the vast ocean of Dukkha hit by storms and lighting, by scorching sun, without water or food, you keep sailing on that rotting raft ... ... until ... "its always darkest before the dawn".

He will be fine.

I asked him if i could copy this and post it anonymously from "an acquaintance," and he said, "I'm always for being truthful. If you insist on posting this then by all means say who wrote it. Its your choice!" To which i replied, in accordance with our friendship's protocols, "Fuck you, then, I'm posting it."

I think he's in the ballpark, with his take on where you're trending here. But I also know that the raft in the vast ocean of dukha, hit by storms and lightning, and scorching sun, without water or food, that rotting raft on which we keep sailing . . . is the only place to be. You don't need to go anywhere in particular tp find it, and you can't flee anywhere once it finds you. And the breath is the only thing happening there, in the end. It's the only interesting thing there is, once "mundane" blows to shit, as it will. The breath is the ultimate refuge, and it is transitory, dukha-ridden, and un-selfed. As Chris says, you'll really start to love it, lol.

love, tim

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/30/20 6:27 AM as a reply to Tim Farrington.
Hey Tim, thank you for taking the time to reach out to Papa Che on my behalf emoticon I am dragging so many people into this that I hope I awaken for everyone else's sake! 

Papa Che seems to have undergone a similar point in his life and that's when he became really dedicated. At this point, I'm sorta half-in/half-out and I have been this way for years - and yet I am too stubborn to give up sitting. 

I will take heed of Papa Che's analysis and continue to sit.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/30/20 6:47 AM as a reply to Tim Farrington.
Pap Che should just come on back in here if he's going to monitor the boards and write e-mails that someone else posts for him. That just seems like too much work  emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/30/20 6:53 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/30/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Started with concentration practice the first 20-30 minutes of the session. The mind was wandering quite a bit and the interest wasn't quite there. Gradually as the sit progressed, I could stabilize for longer and longer periods, but never seemed to manage more than a minute or two at a time before gross distractions knocked me out. At times, the breath felt very 'close' and seemed to take up a larger portion of my awareness. 
I switched to noting with whispered labels and quite a fast pace (about 1 every second or 2). The rest of the sit seems pretty plain. I noted plenty of thoughts and mental images and memories and such. I noted many body sensations especialy pressure and some phsycial discomfort. Overall, a slight impatience came towards the end of the sit, but I don't feel that there was anything exceptionally difficult or that any large challenges arose. 
The last few minutes of the sit, I dropped any technique and just sat. Even now, I am feeling good, a bit relaxed.

I hope that I will have time to sit for another 60 minutes after work. I'd like to continue working on breath concentration (cultivating interest and getting 'up close') and whispering labels as the thread of mindfulness is there...

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/30/20 7:08 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
Pap Che should just come on back in here if he's going to monitor the boards and write e-mails that someone else posts for him. That just seems like too much work  emoticon

not for me. my work, my call.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
7/30/20 7:08 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
Hey Tim, thank you for taking the time to reach out to Papa Che on my behalf emoticon I am dragging so many people into this that I hope I awaken for everyone else's sake! 

Papa Che seems to have undergone a similar point in his life and that's when he became really dedicated. At this point, I'm sorta half-in/half-out and I have been this way for years - and yet I am too stubborn to give up sitting. 

I will take heed of Papa Che's analysis and continue to sit.

HK, don't forget to remember that you're completely fucked!

love, tim

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7/30/20 7:44 AM as a reply to Tim Farrington.
Sounds good Tim! emoticon

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7/30/20 12:59 PM as a reply to Tim Farrington.
not for me. my work, my call.

You have it at then, you mouthpiece you.

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7/30/20 5:42 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/30/2020 - Afternoon sit - 60 minutes

Just finished work and decided to sit right away. Not as enthusiastic to practice as I had been after the morning session.

Started with concentration, but didn't get much attraction. After 15-25 minutes, I switched to whispered noting. A few times, I tried to go back to mental labels, but would get tired and drift away into thoughts so I continued the rest of the session with spoken labels. Noting speed was quite quick, about 1 note a second, sometimes faster sometimes slower. The sit felt very plain. Towards the end, there was quite a bit of leg pain and discomfort but only trace amounts of aversion. I was honestly surprised when I'd look for aversion and it wasn't there. I just settled in and became very calm as the noting continued. When the bell rang, I was honestly surprised the session was already over. 

I'll continue to practice concentration and note with whispered/spoken labels during my next sit. The thread of notes is promising. 

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7/30/20 11:13 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
not for me. my work, my call.

You have it at then, you mouthpiece you.



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7/31/20 6:41 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Do you not practice the four immeasurables Hk ?

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7/31/20 7:41 AM as a reply to Olivier.
Hi Olivier, I'm not really doing heart practices at the moment much. A bit of Metta here and there and often informally. I only have so much time to dedicate to sitting every day so I'm mostly focussed on noting and some concentration. I understand the four immeasurables help to induce concentration/calm/beneficial mindstates, but I'm not really interested in that at the moment.

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7/31/20 7:40 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/31/2020 - Morning sit - 60 minutes

Started with concentration, wasn't able to gain much traction and switched to whispered noting after 10-15 miutes. The string of mindfulness was good, but I cannot discern much of a progression. Overall, minimal aversion or impatience and a bit of drowsiness. A calm sit that didn't feel too long.

Today I am going backpacking/camping (for the first time!) with a friend who also meditates. We are planning on doing a small 4 hour sitting/walking 'retreat' in the morning while we are still in the woods. I think I'll be able to practice a few hours tonight once we have our camp set up as I don't plan on bringing a book. We shall see! emoticon

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8/1/20 11:21 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Great idea!

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8/1/20 12:13 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hope you're having fun on your trip!

I've been reading and it seems like you've done a bit of a turnaround since your so called "Melt down". Now you're doing like 3 sits a day. Inspiring. 

What do you mean with your use of the word progression? What do you call progression? Mindfulness? 

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8/1/20 2:10 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
My two cents on concentration practice -- 1. It's where the money's at. 2. My personal success with it came not by looking for the good in the breath, but just by calmly dropping everything else and being persistent with the practice and patient with myself. Lots and lots to practice with equanimity and hindrances because the formula is so, so simple -- follow the breath and drop everything else -- everything else is hindrances. The key is learning to drop stuff as gently as possible and accepting that the process takes time and to be patient and loving with yourself. I prefer to start with counting breaths up to 8, make a mental assesment of how I did, then repeat. Each time I very, very gently see if the next series of 8 can be gentler, freer of thought, or at the very least with clarity of what arises while breathing. When a distraction arises, rather than forcefully pulling the reins back I imagine the distraction as fizzling out or like dew slowly dropping off of the edge of a leaf.

The fascination with the breath came for me once everything else dropped off. My proces now is to start every practice with 10 - 20 minutes of concentration (until I get to access concentration). I start with counting, until things clear out, then I start to focus more on the details of the breath (I'm finally getting that 7-point breathing technique). I might also do breathing audits where I watch each breath and note whether a thought is happening or not during the breath. Once the mind quiets and I feel the quiet suffusion of well-being, I start vipassana. 

The practice I'm currently doing with Abre also happens to build the concentration as it proceeds, so there is a high degree of concentration and well being by the end of practice. Easy to do an hour plus if I can get the first 10 minutes right.

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8/1/20 4:50 PM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
Thank you Sam, it was a good trip. Short and exhausting so I feel fulfilled.

Actually, although I had that meltdown, I've been slowly starting to sit more before that. My main sit of the day is my morning one. In the evening after work, I try to do 30-60 minutes. At night, instead of reading or watching TV I sit in the dark for a while. The other day, I woke up an hour early and instead of going back to sleep, I decided to do extra sitting. It's almost like an experiment to see what it would feel like to sit more and to investigate why I am so adverse to sitting. 

In terms of progression, I am talking about the Progress of Insight or my subjective experience of a pattern that I have been seeing in my sits. Sometimes, instead of going through different phases (like energetic & focussed then shifting to drowsy & crabby) I spend most of my sit in a neutral, normal sort of phase. Mindfulness is sorta consistent during these sits. 

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8/1/20 4:56 PM as a reply to Brandon Dayton.
Yes, Brandon, I have seen that you're a fan of the concentration and have cultivated those abilities. I am appreciative of the encouragement as it's definitely something I need to work on. It's a simple formula, but this mind finds ways to make everything complex. Trying to 'game' every jhana and nana. 

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8/1/20 5:12 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/31/2020 - Evening sit - 45 minutes

After setting up our camp, my friend and I decided to do a sit. My friend is a big fan of the open awareness practices as taught by Michael Taft and Loch Kelly and thinks those practice compliment vipassana well. He did some guided awareness exercises with me in the car on the way to the trail, and by the time we set up camp, we figured it be a good opportunity to do an open awareness sit. 

The sit itself was alright - I sat on my fold-up sleeping mat and tried to find the right height for comfort by folding it partway and letting part of it lie flat as a mat for my feet. I didn't have the right height during that sit so pain was the huge obstacle. The only intention I set during that sit was to notice contraction and to go back to spacious awareness. Contracting around pain? Notice the contraction and then tune back into the rest of the body and auditory field. Contracting into thought? Come back to the moment. Contracting around a single noise? Tune into the whole field again. Most of the sit was nice except for the pain, but not letting the mind contract around it made it more manageable. 

I'd like to fnd ways to play with more spacious awareness during my day and even practice vipassana from that point of view once it gets more comfortable. 

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8/1/20 6:00 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/1/2020 - Morning mini-retreat - 4 hours

4 x 45 minute sessions of sitting/walking/sitting/walking and then a final 60 minute sit for 4 total hours

I practiced concentration during the first session and then switched to noting. I remember that pain was a really large hindrance, but I tried to explore it, not contract into it, and keep some spaciousness. I didn't want to disturb my friend so I noted mentally and that means mind wandering became more of a hindrance, but I didn't feel drowsy (although I didn't sleep terribly well and we woke up at 6). Another fact of meditation in the woods - bugs crawling on me. I meditate in my backyard often so I can deal with ants and house flies, but there were a few more criters added to the mix this time.

The first walking session was fun. I love walking meditation. I noted 'rising, rising, moving moving, placing placing' as I was walking so slowly. Sometimes the mind absorbed into the steps that the rest of the world was attenuated. It felt as if the sense of self (usualy behind the eyes and in between the ears) was in the feet. These spurts of absorption wouldn't last terribly long. Mind wandering would happen mostly when standing still before turning or before walking again. Transitions periods are worth paying 

The second sit was prettty straight forward. I practiced a bit of concentration but mostly did noting. Again the pain was a huge issue which contributed to some low level impatience. 

The second walk was similar to the first walk. It was around this time, I was starting to really appreciate how I had a friend to sit for long periods with. Had I attempted this alone, I probably would have quit. Lately however, sitting hasn't been as much of a big deal so those first 3 hours felt sorta easy. It didn't feel like 3 hours in terms of how impatient I usually get.

The final sit of an hour, I decided to lay down do give my legs a break before we hiked back to the car. About 5 minutes into the sit, my friend stood up and alerted me to a large timber rattlesnake that was about 10 feet away from him. We spent a good portion (10-15 minutes) of this hour trying to shoo away the snake as they are venomous and we wanted to sit in relative peace. We didn't reset the timer, but we sat out the rest of the hour once we felt the snake situation had been handled appropriately. During the rest of this sit, I was a tad more paranoid and would double check the sound of rustling leaves around us. As I was lying down during this sit, I dealt with some dozing and sat up. Due to the snake situation, the momentum sorta fell apart. 

Overall, I'm glad we did this 4 hour session. It wasn't as hard as I thought since I do these small sessions from time to time and tend to be extremely impatient. Besides the pain, I dealt with a lot of doubt. The level of mindfulness I had during that sit was similar to the 13 day retreat I did last year because I never seem able to go 'deep' or cultivate super continuous mindfulness. My teacher has high standards and expects concentration/depth and a thread of continuous mindfulness - no room for lackadaisical practice. I balanced doubts with trying to get in a note about once every outbreath (a la shargrol) assuming my mind wasn't wandering, but even then I wasn't quite able to hit that mark. Still, fun to experiment with some open awareness, bond with a meditation friend, get some experience with momentary absorptions, and see a rattlesnake. emoticon

I think that in the future, learning how to do these short backpacking trips might be a fun way to do mini 1-3 day self lead retreats out in nature. It's the American Forest Tradition. 

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8/3/20 10:19 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/2/2020 - Afertnoon sits - 30 & 40 minutes

I did 2 Fire Kasina sits in the afternoon. I was originally planning on using it to build concentration for a longer sit, but I ended up quitting due to impatience. I'd refresh the dot on the flame every 3-5 minutes are so, but probably longer at points.

Overall, the usual FK patterns were there for me:

The inital period at the start of the sit where the dot is difficult to stabilize and flashes extremely quickly.

Then the dot breaks of into horizontal bands of turquoise, yellow and red. Yesterday, a deep purple outline appeared above the turqoise band.

At the some point the dot would appear to be a brilliant fuchsia or even laser-pointer red. 

Plenty of dissolution and many small, intricate details and textures both inside and around the dot.


Not sure why I dealt with so much impatience and allowed myself to get up. I had all afternoon to sit and couldn't bring myself to do it! 

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8/3/20 11:13 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
8/2/2020 - Afertnoon sits - 30 & 40 minutes

I did 2 Fire Kasina sits in the afternoon. I was originally planning on using it to build concentration for a longer sit, but I ended up quitting due to impatience. I'd refresh the dot on the flame every 3-5 minutes are so, but probably longer at points.

Overall, the usual FK patterns were there for me:

The inital period at the start of the sit where the dot is difficult to stabilize and flashes extremely quickly.

Then the dot breaks of into horizontal bands of turquoise, yellow and red. Yesterday, a deep purple outline appeared above the turqoise band.

At the some point the dot would appear to be a brilliant fuchsia or even laser-pointer red. 

Plenty of dissolution and many small, intricate details and textures both inside and around the dot.


Not sure why I dealt with so much impatience and allowed myself to get up. I had all afternoon to sit and couldn't bring myself to do it! 
Fire Kasina? Really? Doesn't it take multiple days in a retreat to get anywhere with FK?

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8/3/20 11:47 AM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
Fire Kasina is pretty fun and can help a person get concentrated rather efficiently. That's why Daniel recommends it quite often (not to mention, it has 'insight potential' and people can move rapidly through the PoI in FK retreats). He recommended it in your thread about concentration resources for a reason...

What Daniel and others describe with regards to 'powers' or manipulating colors or shapes in the air - that sort of concentration/headspace requires a retreat set up. 

It can still be used as an object for daily sitting...

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8/3/20 4:43 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
I love the idea of the camping retreat. I did a hike with a dharma friend a few weeks back and we did a short sit at the top of the hike. Something about nature seems conducive to healthy mind states.

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8/4/20 7:10 AM as a reply to Brandon Dayton.
Something tells me that due to COVID-19, retreats this year might be harder to attend. I figured self-led retreat camping might be a good alternative since it would help me get away from distractions. I know a few people who have done this sort of thing and recommend it. 

I agree that nature is good for mental health and can also help facilitate mindfulness/awareness. 

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8/4/20 6:49 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/3/2020 - Evening sit - 25 minutes

I didn't sleep well and after work, I just wanted to unplug. I only managed about 25 minutes as the impatience was so extreme. 

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8/4/20 8:30 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/4/2020 - Morning session - 60 minute sit & 45 minute walk

Going into the sit, I felt inspired to sit/walk and do a bit more than usual - but not in a huge, strivey way. I had some extra time this morning and figured, why not dedicate it to meditation?

Started the sit with breath concentration. Holding the breath sort of loosly in attention, yet trying to notice the beginnings and endings of the in and out breaths. Plenty of distraction and mind wandering, with gradual increase in length of time between episodes of mind wandering. At some point, the mind sorta locked on to the breath: no matter whether thoughts were arising in the foreground or background, the breath was present to some degree. This state of focus wasn't really comfortable or relaxed but sorta oddly effortless. Eventually that came to an end and I switched to noting.
I whispered the labels out loud which helped deal with drowsiness and dullness. I labeled this way for a majority of the sit and got to a point where nothing much seemed to be happening so I tried to mentally label the breath at the abdomen. As soon as I noticed the mind-wandering-drowsiness, I went back to spoken labels.

The walking portion went well enough. I walked back and forth in my room noting mentally 'lifting, lifting, moving, moving, placing, placing' and other phenomena (sights, sounds, thoughts, etc.). Trying to create a continual flow of mindfulness between turns which were like mini transition periods. Intention is really important when trying to stay in contact with the feet. I also noticed the transition between the 'practice mindset' and the 'getting my day started mindset' as the session neared the end.

Overall, good session with decent mindfulness. A little bit of impatience here or there, but it didn't feel like that big of a deal to put in the extra time. Nothing felt forced. A good sense of relaxation and looking forward to my next sit. I'll continue to work with concentration and vocal noting.  

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8/4/20 11:45 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
You go Kid! You're on fire! What motivational problems? They're gone

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8/4/20 12:05 PM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
Thank you for cheering me on! Except I am already dreading having to sit this evening emoticon 

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8/4/20 12:05 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
7/4/2020 - Lunch break sit - 20 minutes

Practiced breath counting. Counted each in breath and out breath, up to eight and then back to one. 'One-One-Two-Two-Three-Three...".

Hindrances: hunger and drowsiness, work thoughts. 

Just wanted to see if this could act as a small 'mindful refresher' as I head into the afternoon. My off cushion mindfulness generally takes a dive between 12:30pm and 5:00pm. 

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8/5/20 6:53 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/4/2020 - Evening sit - 20 minutes

Extreme impatience, unable to manage much of a sit. 

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8/5/20 7:22 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/5/2020 - Morning sit - 30 minutes

Heavy winds due to a tropical storm blew through our area and caused our internet to go out, meaning that I have to work from the office today. This meant waking up, testing the internet, getting meals ready, morning routine, etc. before commuting to work so I really felt rushed or that I had time to sit.

The sit itself sucked. Absolutely no concentration, sleepiness, exhaustion, heaps of restlessness, planning thoughts, bagaining, agitation, pettiness, anger, frustration, contraction of mind and body, doubts-doubts-doubts, feeling like an utter failure and questioning everything to do with meditation.

Sometimes I ask for sits like this so that I can learn to navigate this territory, but I am knocked out by it almost every time. It's humbling... well discouraging really. My inner toddler is having quite a tantrum and I realize how immature I am, like some developmental step still needs to occur so that I feel and behave and react and function more like an adult.

During my next sit, I'd like to just finish the session and stop worrying about whether it's good or not. Small vent/rant: the last few months I have felt that having a teacher is making this entire endeavor more stressful as there is pressure to meet someone else's expectations, but that's just me projecting my issues on someone else. Not sure how what to do about that as I recognize it, but it's still a hindrance.

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8/5/20 7:20 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
During my next sit, I'd like to just finish the session and stop worrying about whether it's good or not.

Just note, "Judging, judging...." and move on. 

To be straight with you about this, there's no such thing as a "bad" sit or a "good" sit. They're all helpful. Your view of the purpose of sitting might benefit from a re-orientation.

emoticon

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8/5/20 7:36 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
One of the foundations/applications/establishments of mindfulness is to be aware of mind-states, so:

You say:
Absolutely no concentration

But you were aware of:
sleepiness,
exhaustion,
heaps of restlessness,
planning thoughts,
bagaining,
agitation,
pettiness,
anger,
frustration,
contraction of mind and body,
doubts-doubts-doubts,
feeling like an utter failure and
questioning everything to do with meditation
This doesn't look like "no concentration" at all!

There is a lot of mindfulness here to be aware of all these mental states, and thus concentration. Only that it wasn't a contractive flavor of concentration.

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8/5/20 7:40 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
You're not wrong, but I have trouble with that Zen idea of 'just sitting' - sitting for the sake of sitting.

I'm a goal oriented practitioner and the goal right now is to get to EQ and then move on to bigger and better things. The future reward is awakening - and that is supposed to make my life better for some inexplicable reason.

If I just sat to sit, I doubt I would have ever gotten interested in meditation in the first place. There's some idea that life will improve as a result.

And that's why I've spent money on travel and retreats and books and a teacher and pour hours and hours into this and yet - here I am. Womp womp.

Noting frustration, doubts, urge to vent, tantrum, etc.  emoticon

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8/5/20 7:41 AM as a reply to Siavash.
Thank you for the encouragement Siavash. emoticon

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8/5/20 7:47 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
Thank you for the encouragement Siavash. emoticon


Not much of an encouragement for the sake of encouragement, but just analyzing your report!

emoticon

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8/5/20 7:48 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
I'm a goal oriented practitioner and the goal right now is to get to EQ and then move on to bigger and better things. The future reward is awakening - and that is supposed to make my life better for some inexplicable reason.


I think you're confusing what I'm trying to tell you with what you think I said  emoticon

I'm not suggesting "just sitting" as a practice for you. I'm saying that within the bounds of your existing practice (noting, etc.) you can accept what's happening in this very moment, examine it, investigate it, and thus reap the rewards of reaching your goal. And, further, your misunderstanding of what I said is, I think, a tell. You seem to be confusing strategy and tactics, such that your goal may have become your practice.

Just think about it, please.



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8/5/20 7:59 AM as a reply to Siavash.
Siavash:
One of the foundations/applications/establishments of mindfulness is to be aware of mind-states, so:

You say:
Absolutely no concentration

But you were aware of:
sleepiness,
exhaustion,
heaps of restlessness,
planning thoughts,
bagaining,
agitation,
pettiness,
anger,
frustration,
contraction of mind and body,
doubts-doubts-doubts,
feeling like an utter failure and
questioning everything to do with meditation
This doesn't look like "no concentration" at all!

There is a lot of mindfulness here to be aware of all these mental states, and thus concentration. Only that it wasn't a contractive flavor of concentration.

Siavash, I've really been enjoying how you are helping people see their blindspots in several of the threads. Hopefully people are seeing what you are pointing out--- but often they don't because it's their blindspot! 

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8/5/20 8:08 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
you can accept what's happening in this very moment

I find that, one of the things that helps me for accepting the sensations more easily, is that I notice the uncomfortable sensation, for instance a pain in the body, and I notice the details of that sensation, its location and size and intensity, then I ask myself: Did I intend to have this sensation with these exact details? When I decided to have this sensation with its given size, shape, location, etc? And the obvious answer is: I didn't intend/decide to have it, so it's not my problem, my fault, my reponsibility that it's arising, and I can not do anything about it, except if I want to, I can be curious about it and watch for the next ones that come from nowhere.

So Hibiscus Kid, you may find that helpful too.


(Although it would be good if I could do the above most of the times emoticon , not there yet)

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8/5/20 8:05 AM as a reply to shargrol.
Thank you shargrol,
I am glad you think it's helpful.
I hope to apply them myself too emoticon
Thanks.

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8/5/20 8:14 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
You're not wrong; I believe that 'good sitting' is required to awaken so being a  'good meditator' is sort of a goal. Otherwise Daniel wouldn't have written about all the folks he's seen who have meditated for decades and have nothing to show for it, or even dedicated an entire section of MCTB to 'mastery'. I suppose that's why I want to make sure my sits are of good quality.

In this case, 'quality' to me means:
1) That the mind is reasonably engaged with the session even if the material that comes up is dark or embrassing, etc. In this case, I was just really spacey and caught up.
2) Finishing the session. The fact that I got up from the sit early shows that I am not willing to sit and bring equanimity to the tough material and sluggish mindstates - or even sit in the midst of it all even if equanimity isn't possible.


Maybe awakening doesn't require someone to be a good meditator, but it just seems unlikely to happen without developing those skills.

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8/5/20 8:21 AM as a reply to Siavash.
Thank you Siavash. I'll try to remember the next time I'm in a tangle to be better about investigating it. To feel into all of that confusion.

And thank you again for pointing out the blindspot above. You're right of course; I am being a tad melodramatic. I notice all of this upon reflection, but during the session I was forgetting to note it all.

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8/5/20 12:28 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
I believe that 'good sitting' is required to awaken so being a  'good meditator' is sort of a goal. Otherwise Daniel wouldn't have written about all the folks he's seen who have meditated for decades and have nothing to show for it, or even dedicated an entire section of MCTB to 'mastery'. I suppose that's why I want to make sure my sits are of good quality.


I'm going to stick with this because you're still misinterpreting my comments:

Daniel was talking about people who don't actually meditate but sit and stew over psychology and social issues. A good quality sit requires you to recognize what's happening right now, be it what you call "good" stuff or "bad" stuff, or judging the so-called quality of your sit. I'm struggling to point out to you that a good sit is any sit during which you are attentively plugged into what's going on right now, noting that thing, and keeping focused on the next thing when that pops up in your attention.

This means what you are calling "good" and "bad" is not relevant as long as you're noting all of it properly, otherwise known as mastery.

That's all I'm going to say on this, hoping the third try is the charm  emoticon

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8/6/20 6:14 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Thank you Chris and others for setting me straight emoticon 

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8/6/20 3:54 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/5/2020 - Afternoon sit - 60 minutes

After getting home from work, I was exhausted and tired. 

I sat down and started taking a few mindful breaths. Within moments I switched to vocal noting.

The sit was sluggish and extremely drowsy. I noted the sensations around the eyes/in the head that I associate with being tired. I noted sounds, changes in light, body sensations, mental imagery and drifting off into sleep. At one point (30 minutes in) I asmost got up to take a nap, so I noted teh restlessness, drowsiness and bargaining. After this point, I felt a tad more awake although it was a drowsy/sluggish sit and I'd still drift at points.

All in all, a good sit as I had momentum and just kept noting, noting, noting.

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8/6/20 4:02 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/5/2020 - Night sit - 30 minutes

Before bed, meditated in the dark and freestyle noted. There was curiosity about the mindstream and trying to investigate both the random aspect of thoughts and the rate at which thoughts were bubbling up. Things were a tad eerie as I considered what was creating the thoughts because it wasn't in concious control.  

This sit was good, easy, a tad lazy and nowhere near as tired as the afternoon sit. 

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8/6/20 6:21 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/6/2020 - Morning sit - 60 Minutes

A bit of resistance to sitting before taking the seat.

I didn't really practice concentration at the beginning of this one. Took a few mindful breaths and then started mental noting. It was clear that this was to be another tired/sluggish sit so I set the intention to start labeling out loud when I felt it appropriate - took about 10-15 minutes. A deep sense of calm pervaded the sit with minor bits of annoyance or resistance coming up. The majority of the noting was related to mental imagery.

Overall a standard sit. Good momentum with the noting during this session.

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8/6/20 5:00 PM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/6/2020 - Afternoon sit - 60 Minutes

Not much resistance going into the sit.

Started with concentration/breath counting. Was able to relax a bit, and get centered on the breath to varying degrees. Noticing at times that the relaxation would increase or decrease, that certain hindrances would show up, and that the outside world would attentuate occasionally.

After about 15 minutes, I switched to mental noting, and then verbal noting as things became more drowsy and sluggish. 

Towards the final third of the sit, many of my fears/doubts/dramas/worries/guilt/shortcomings came to visit me. I kept note of the mental images/narratives and the niggling physical sensations of fear and anxiety that shot through the abdomen. It felt a bit like trying to settle into cold water: the initial shock causes the body to contract and shudder, and so it is when settling into the anxiety. 

Overall, the momentum was good during this sit as I could keep the thread of noting going. There was also a decent willingness to be with the difficulty material and examine/note it properly. Concentration still needs work though.

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
8/7/20 6:50 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/7/2020 - Morning sit - 30 minutes

I knew this sit was going to be short as I got home late last night and slept in a bit so no issues there.

Last night as I was driving home, getting ready for bed, and trying to fall asleep, I was met with extreme angst and visited by various frustrations and fears and depression/misery, anger, etc. I did my best to note the thoughts and contraction in the body as I drifted off to sleep - reminding myself that wallowing in the mess wouldn't help and being objective and noting was a form of self empowerment.

This morning's session was a rehashing of much of the same. Frustrations and fears and angst and planning and bargaining and rationalizing and narratives. I lost the thread of noting a few times as I was pulled into the whirlpool of thought.

Overall, another sort of lackadaisical, blurry sit. One sit at a time. I'm almost starting to embrace the mess. It sucks, but it keeps things interesting as long as I remember to prevent the content from proliferating and spill out into my life and this forum. Bless you people for putting up with me emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
8/7/20 6:59 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Overall, the momentum was good during this sit as I could keep the thread of noting going. There was also a decent willingness to be with the difficulty material and examine/note it properly. Concentration still needs work though.

emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
8/7/20 11:44 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/7/2020 - Lunch break sit - 30 minutes

Work is slow today so I took time to do a formal sit. Practiced mental noting. 

I'm still in a mindstate of annoyance and anger. A few life things added to the stress. Spent the sit in a sleepy, yet angry state. Absolutely furious and frustrated - the mind creating mental narratives and finding reasons to feed the anger. Noting the contraction in the body, noting the feeling of 'heat' in the chest and abdomen and keeping tabs on the intensity of all of this depending on what the mind was doing.

Narratives are sorta related to anything I feel has authority over me: my job, my parents, my teacher, societal expectations/the rat race, etc. The flavor of anger is one of telling everyone to just fuck off and me dropping out completely - just running away and closing myself off. It all feels incredibly selfish, petty, and defensive.

Anyway, this feeling of contraction and anger has been hanging around all morning so I'm just trying to make space for it as I continue to try and get my work done.

'Anger, burning, frustration, breath, mental image, tired/cranky, remembering, planning, stress, annoyance, burning, anger' and so on.

I'm sure when I sit later, I'll have to sit and metabolize more of this stuff. My goal for my next sit is just to keep momentum and a thread of notes so that proliferation is kept to a minimum. 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
8/8/20 5:17 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
8/7/2020 - Lunch break sit - 30 minutes

Work is slow today so I took time to do a formal sit. Practiced mental noting. 

I'm still in a mindstate of annoyance and anger. A few life things added to the stress. Spent the sit in a sleepy, yet angry state. Absolutely furious and frustrated - the mind creating mental narratives and finding reasons to feed the anger. Noting the contraction in the body, noting the feeling of 'heat' in the chest and abdomen and keeping tabs on the intensity of all of this depending on what the mind was doing.

Narratives are sorta related to anything I feel has authority over me: my job, my parents, my teacher, societal expectations/the rat race, etc. The flavor of anger is one of telling everyone to just fuck off and me dropping out completely - just running away and closing myself off. It all feels incredibly selfish, petty, and defensive.

Anyway, this feeling of contraction and anger has been hanging around all morning so I'm just trying to make space for it as I continue to try and get my work done.

'Anger, burning, frustration, breath, mental image, tired/cranky, remembering, planning, stress, annoyance, burning, anger' and so on.

I'm sure when I sit later, I'll have to sit and metabolize more of this stuff. My goal for my next sit is just to keep momentum and a thread of notes so that proliferation is kept to a minimum. 

This is a volatile place, the desire for liberation and presumptions about what that path takes running headlong into earthly karmic and dharmic constraints. I don't know how a householder solves this, myself--- as an acknowledged whack job, i would have a nervous breakdown at these points, and crawl out of the wreckage some time later in a much quieter place, the world having moved on without me. Meditation in the ruins is a sober but lovely thing. You need some actual wisdom here from people who have kept their real lives intact and have shepherded those lives through this kind of crunch, people who manage to seem, uh, straight. Chris Marti? Anyone? Daniel Ingram comes to mind as well, duh. This place must be crawling with enlightened householders, right?

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
8/8/20 8:24 AM as a reply to Tim Farrington.
Thank you Tim. I wasn't really looking for advice in this case; I was just simply reporting what was going on. Not one of my usual angsty rants. Just giving the honest report of what was noted and a bit of a context for the anger and hoplessness.

My understanding is that these phases arise and we must sit through them without ignoring them or tuning out. We are trying to remain a bit objective about all material whether pleasant, unpleasant, or neutral.

I don't think anyone can offer advice at this moment as it's just part of the practice and the mind takes time to process and metabolize.

(I feel better today than I did yesterday by the way emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
8/8/20 8:36 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
emoticon

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
8/8/20 9:40 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
8/8/2020 - Morning sit - 30 minutes

Slept in this morning as I usually only allow myself 6-7 hours of sleep so I sat a bit less. I really didn't feel like sitting this morning.

I practiced mental noting.

The sit itself was drowsy, and I still dealt with the same content as yesterday although not as intense. Some anger, some annoyance, planning, worrying, sleepiness, mental images, tightness or contraction in the body, heat in the chest, other sounds and body sensations, etc. 

Overall, there wasn't much momentum as I lost the thread of noting a few times as the narratives filled the bandwidth of my attention. Maybe I should have stuck to spoken labels. Oh well! 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
8/9/20 11:47 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hibiscus Kid:
8/8/2020 - Morning sit - 30 minutes

Slept in this morning as I usually only allow myself 6-7 hours of sleep so I sat a bit less. I really didn't feel like sitting this morning.

I practiced mental noting.

The sit itself was drowsy, and I still dealt with the same content as yesterday although not as intense. Some anger, some annoyance, planning, worrying, sleepiness, mental images, tightness or contraction in the body, heat in the chest, other sounds and body sensations, etc. 

Overall, there wasn't much momentum as I lost the thread of noting a few times as the narratives filled the bandwidth of my attention. Maybe I should have stuck to spoken labels. Oh well! 
Aren't you using spoken labels? At loud noting?

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
Answer
8/9/20 4:00 PM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
Depends on the session. Sometimes spoken, sometimes mental. I usually try mental noting until the session starts falling apart and switch to vocal notes.

My dream is to be a good mental noter. On silent retreat we aren't able to note out loud now, are we? emoticon Noble Silence after all! 

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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8/10/20 11:37 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
THIS is your wakeup call! Did you do your morning meditation?

RE: Hibiscus Kid's Log #3
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9/4/20 2:38 AM as a reply to Hibiscus Kid.
Hi HK! I hope you are doing well and enjoying life mate! 

Best wishes!