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Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Tom K 9/1/20 7:59 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Chris Marti 9/1/20 8:16 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Tom K 9/1/20 10:30 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Chris Marti 9/1/20 11:27 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Sam Gentile 9/1/20 11:46 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Tom K 9/1/20 12:02 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Robbie Downs-Levene 9/1/20 4:26 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/19/20 12:33 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Milo 10/19/20 12:29 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/19/20 1:17 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Chris Marti 10/19/20 8:01 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/19/20 12:16 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Milo 10/20/20 2:49 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/19/20 5:39 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Milo 10/20/20 1:54 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/24/20 4:42 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/24/20 4:53 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Daniel M. Ingram 10/24/20 11:40 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/24/20 1:21 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/24/20 4:06 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/24/20 6:10 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Chris Marti 10/24/20 6:24 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/24/20 7:51 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/25/20 7:10 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/25/20 7:25 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Papa Che Dusko 10/25/20 9:27 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 6:04 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:53 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Chris Marti 10/25/20 8:54 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:46 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/25/20 2:33 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/26/20 6:32 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/26/20 5:49 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/26/20 11:13 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Papa Che Dusko 10/26/20 2:50 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:55 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:57 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/26/20 6:22 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 6:34 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/26/20 3:34 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 6:09 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Papa Che Dusko 10/26/20 2:49 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 6:08 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:28 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:42 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/19/20 4:58 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/19/20 7:30 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/19/20 8:40 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened shargrol 10/19/20 8:41 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Chris Marti 10/19/20 8:56 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/22/20 4:25 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/22/20 6:54 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/22/20 8:00 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Chris Marti 10/22/20 11:31 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/22/20 12:54 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/22/20 1:40 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/22/20 2:42 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/22/20 5:17 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/22/20 6:15 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Papa Che Dusko 10/23/20 1:12 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/23/20 2:50 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:27 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:21 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 4:51 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Chris Marti 10/22/20 1:46 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/22/20 2:26 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:13 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:07 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:09 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/26/20 5:45 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 6:23 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/22/20 7:05 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/22/20 9:49 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/22/20 10:08 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 4:46 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 4:23 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 4:35 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 6:14 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/19/20 11:36 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Chris Marti 10/19/20 12:07 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Papa Che Dusko 10/19/20 1:06 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/20/20 12:15 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/20/20 4:28 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/20/20 10:49 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/20/20 2:06 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Papa Che Dusko 10/20/20 2:23 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Ni Nurta 10/20/20 2:30 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:01 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/21/20 3:19 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/21/20 2:30 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 4:04 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Angel Roberto Puente 10/19/20 3:00 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/23/20 6:51 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Siavash 10/23/20 12:05 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/23/20 12:00 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Siavash 10/23/20 1:03 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Siavash 10/23/20 12:16 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/23/20 12:23 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Siavash 10/23/20 12:23 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/23/20 12:40 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/23/20 1:14 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:24 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/24/20 4:20 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Jim Smith 10/25/20 1:48 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 10/25/20 2:36 AM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened terry 10/26/20 5:50 PM
RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened Papa Che Dusko 10/25/20 2:46 AM
In another clip from our podcast, Daniel describes what it's like to be Enlighented. You can watch the 10 minute clip on YouTube or Facebook.

You can also view the full podcast on YouTube or Facebook.

If you're up for it, hit us with a Subscribe to our YT Channel and a Like & Follow on our FB Page .  emoticon

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
9/1/20 8:16 AM as a reply to Tom K.
Tom K, would you mind posting these notices one continuous thread instead of starting a new thread each time?

Thanks,

A DhO Moderator

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
9/1/20 10:30 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Ahh...sorry, Chris. Will do for future posts :-)

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
9/1/20 11:27 AM as a reply to Tom K.
Why, thank you!

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
9/1/20 11:46 AM as a reply to Tom K.
Can I just ask if this is new or part of your original interview with him?

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
9/1/20 12:02 PM as a reply to Sam Gentile.
Heya Sam, this is a clip from the original. We pulled it out to share on its own because we loved Daniel's practical description of how he, as an arhat, now perceives the world. And how his current reality differs from the way he operated before completing the Path.    

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
9/1/20 4:26 PM as a reply to Tom K.
I enjoyed the Video, thanks for the work involved looks like you have a good thing going there!
+1 Subscriber

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 12:33 AM as a reply to Tom K.
Tom K:
In another clip from our podcast, Daniel describes what it's like to be Enlighented. You can watch the 10 minute clip on YouTube or Facebook.

You can also view the full podcast on YouTube or Facebook.

If you're up for it, hit us with a Subscribe to our YT Channel and a Like & Follow on our FB Page .  emoticon

I found the video interesting, I have noticed myself that mindfulness with my eyes open, being aware of the environment around me (when meditating or walking around), has an effect of diminshing unpelasant emotions (among other effects such as diminishing the sense of duality - I'm not sure if that is significant). I sometimes use it to enter jhanas. But I never equated this with being awakened. 

So, I am a little bit confused by this video. If all you have to do is think of the room, why do people spend years meditating for hours a day and go on retreats? What is the point of noting? Cessation/fruition? Fire kasina?  Why Notice that you can’t do anything other than what happens?

In MCTB Daniel discusses perception of dualities. If the question is what is it like to be enlightened, then why didn't Daniel discuss that? 

https://www.mctb.org/mctb2/table-of-contents/part-v-awakening/37-models-of-the-stages-of-awakening/a-revised-four-path-model/
...
What they [those of second path] may be most bothered by is that, despite cycle after cycle of practice, duality remains the predominant experience most of the time.
...
At the beginning of third path, most practitioners think: “I’ll just complete more cycles of insight, as I did before, and this will do the trick.” They don’t understand yet what it is they have attained, or its deeper implications. By the mature stage of third path, which for most can take months or years to show up, the practitioner is more and more able to see the selfless, centerlessness, luminosity, etc. of phenomena in real-time, so much so that it can be very difficult to notice what artificial perceptual dualities remain.

Would anyone who understands what Daniel means as duality experience, or perceptual duality, care to explain it?

Or does Daniel explain it anywhere in print or on video?

(I have had several different types of non-dual experiences myself but I don't know whether or not they have anything to do with milestones in the process of awakening - I don't really know how to define milestones of awakening because I don't follow the cessation/fruition model - I simply define awakening as "the process of letting go of attachment to self". I measure progress as "less suffering (attachment/aversion) over time". And I am interested in what other people experience.)


Thanks in advance.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 12:29 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Tom K:
In another clip from our podcast, Daniel describes what it's like to be Enlighented. You can watch the 10 minute clip on YouTube or Facebook.

You can also view the full podcast on YouTube or Facebook.

If you're up for it, hit us with a Subscribe to our YT Channel and a Like & Follow on our FB Page .  emoticon

I found the video interesting, I have noticed myself that mindfulness with my eyes open, being aware of the environment around me (when meditating or walking around), has an effect of diminshing unpelasant emotions (among other effects such as diminishing the sense of duality - I'm not sure if that is significant). I sometimes use it to enter jhanas. But I never equated this with being awakened. 

So, I am a little bit confused by this video. If all you have to do is think of the room, why do people spend years meditating for hours a day and go on retreats? What is the point of noting? Cessation/fruition? Fire kasina?

In MCTB Daniel discusses perception of dualities. If the question is what is it like to be enlightened, then why didn't Daniel discuss that? 

https://www.mctb.org/mctb2/table-of-contents/part-v-awakening/37-models-of-the-stages-of-awakening/a-revised-four-path-model/
...
What they [those of second path] may be most bothered by is that, despite cycle after cycle of practice, duality remains the predominant experience most of the time.
...
At the beginning of third path, most practitioners think: “I’ll just complete more cycles of insight, as I did before, and this will do the trick.” They don’t understand yet what it is they have attained, or its deeper implications. By the mature stage of third path, which for most can take months or years to show up, the practitioner is more and more able to see the selfless, centerlessness, luminosity, etc. of phenomena in real-time, so much so that it can be very difficult to notice what artificial perceptual dualities remain.

Would anyone who understands what Daniel means as duality experience, or perceptual duality, care to explain it?

Or does Daniel explain it anywhere in print or on video?

(I have had several different types of non-dual experiences myself but I don't know whether or not they have anything to do with milestones in the process of awakening - I don't really know how to define milestones of awakening because I don't follow the cessation/fruition model - I simply define awakening as "the process of letting go of attachment to self". I measure progress as "less suffering (attachment/aversion) over time". And I am interested in what other people experience.)


Thanks in advance.

There's a reason it's called practice.

Have you ever trained as an athlete? It's one thing to know the mechanics of a good tennis stroke. It's a whole other thing to put in the hundreds or thousands of hours to internalize it to the point where thought becomes instinct.

Same with this awakening project. It's spiritual athletics.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 1:17 AM as a reply to Milo.
Milo:

There's a reason it's called practice.

Have you ever trained as an athlete? It's one thing to know the mechanics of a good tennis stroke. It's a whole other thing to put in the hundreds or thousands of hours to internalize it to the point where thought becomes instinct.

Same with this awakening project. It's spiritual athletics.

The person Daniel described in the video didn't need any practice. He tried it once and it worked the first time. 

And if you want to stay in that mode all the time, why do you need cessaton/fruition and all the other forms of practice why can't you just practice being mindful of the space arond you?

And what about perception of duality?

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 4:58 AM as a reply to Tom K.
The video helped me crystallize something about the relationship between samatha an vipassana.

Vipassana helps you to develop a sense of detachment towards mental activity: thoughts, emotions, impulses, and sensory input, such as pain etc.

Samatha, "tranquility" meditation (which Daniel doesn't mention in the video), helps to turn off the stress reaction.

That's why samatha and vipassana work well together, they work in different ways to reduce dukkha. 

It is not hard to do them together, to be relaxed and breathe in a relaxing way while noting or doing some other type of vipassana or mindfulness practice.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 7:30 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Putting the information in the video into practice seems relatively easy to do.

Most people who have done some form of meditation are familiar with the experience of losing their concentration and finding themselves lost in thought and then returning to the object of meditation.

When you are lost in thought you are in the default network where emotions can be troublesome. When you return to meditation you get out of the default network and into the experiential network where emotions are much less troublesome.

If an unpleasant emotion arises in the course of a meditation session or during daily life, then you are probably in the default network. Getting out of the default network is easy. Just observe something, like your surroundings, or your breath, or even the emotion itself if you treat it as an object of observation rather than an experience you are immersed in - although it can be tricky not to get drawn back into the default network if you are observing the emotion.

The trick is to remember to do this when it matters most: when a very strong emotion arises. Strong emotions tend to take over you mind, they grab your attention and draw you into them even for people who are used to meditating.

It also takes a certain amount of maturity, or insight, to recognize that when you have a strong emotion your suffering is not caused by the problem you are reacting to, your suffering is caused by how you are reacting to the problem. You can solve a problem with compassion and reason without reacting with unpleasant emotions, but peple have a tendency to think the emotions are right or reality. As Daniel said, like a person who doesn't like being drunk but keeps on drinking anyway.

But I think if you understand what is in the video it possible to have the presence of mind when you have a strong emotion, to extract yourself from the default network and go into the experiential network. If you can do this a few times and observe it easing your suffering, it shouldn't be too hard to make a habit of it - even if you are not yet awakened to the point where you are out of the default network full time. The positive reinforcement from the reduction in suffering should help you habitualize it. And practicing on smaller issues should help develop the skill or habit to make it easier when a strong emotion arises.

This also provides an answer to a question I am always puzzling over - how to let go of an emotion without suppressing it. If you find an unpleasant emotion arising and you shift out of the default network into the experiential network by observing something while also observing the emotion - you are not suppressing it.

All of this reminds me of what Michael Singer wrote in his book The Untethered Soul. He uses the phenomenon of lucid dreaming to explain how to develop a sense of detachment to unpleasant thoughts, emotions, and impulses.

He says that in a regular dream you think it is real, but in a lucid dream you know you are dreaming.

To be lucid with respect to your own mind means to be aware of the activity in your mind as if you were an observer, not a participant like when you are watching a movie and become so drawn in to it that you forget where you are and react as if the movie was real. To be lucid with respect to the activity of your mind, is to observe your thoughts emotions and impulses but not to get drawn into them so that they take over your mind and you forget you are observing them and start reacting to them.

By staying lucid, by remaining an observer, you stay out of the default network where emotions can be so much more troublesome.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 8:01 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
And if you want to stay in that mode all the time, why do you need cessaton/fruition and all the other forms of practice why can't you just practice being mindful of the space arond you?

Because there are many hidden assumptions and habits, all focused on our habitual models of how things actually work in our experience, that are explored in-depth and made visible, obvious, and permanent with extended practice. For me, awakening is not just about staying in some mode or another. It's the modeless perception of my experience. Anyone can be present at any given time, of course, and that's great, but there are permanent changes to how we experience our lives that can be had, so why not? Nothing else comes close.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 8:40 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
If you can be a Buddha right away, nobody is stopping you. Please go ahead. Personally I need all the help I can get, because I don't think I get it all just by being mindful from the perspective of a dualistic individual self with all my individual conditioning and social conditioning and human perceptual filters. Do you?

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 8:41 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

To be lucid with respect to your own mind means to be aware of the activity in your mind as if you were an observer, not a participant like when you are watching a movie and become so drawn in to it that you forget where you are and react as if the movie was real. To be lucid with respect to the activity of your mind, is to observe your thoughts emotions and impulses but not to get drawn into them so that they take over your mind and you forget you are observing them and start reacting to them.

By staying lucid, by remaining an observer, you stay out of the default network where emotions can be so much more troublesome.

Well, that's only the first step. The next step (and the step that enlightenment is all about) is figuring out what it means to observe. What observes that it is observing? How do you know? emoticon

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 8:56 AM as a reply to shargrol.
To be awake is to know exactly what you are.

emoticon

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 11:36 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.063.than.html
Cula-Malunkyovada Sutta: The Shorter Instructions to Malunkya
translated from the Pali by
Thanissaro Bhikkhu
...
"It's just as if a man were wounded with an arrow thickly smeared with poison. His friends & companions, kinsmen & relatives would provide him with a surgeon, and the man would say, 'I won't have this arrow removed until I know whether the man who wounded me was a noble warrior, a brahman, a merchant, or a worker.' He would say, 'I won't have this arrow removed until I know the given name & clan name of the man who wounded me... until I know whether he was tall, medium, or short... until I know whether he was dark, ruddy-brown, or golden-colored... until I know his home village, town, or city... until I know whether the bow with which I was wounded was a long bow or a crossbow... until I know whether the bowstring with which I was wounded was fiber, bamboo threads, sinew, hemp, or bark... until I know whether the shaft with which I was wounded was wild or cultivated... until I know whether the feathers of the shaft with which I was wounded were those of a vulture, a stork, a hawk, a peacock, or another bird... until I know whether the shaft with which I was wounded was bound with the sinew of an ox, a water buffalo, a langur, or a monkey.' He would say, 'I won't have this arrow removed until I know whether the shaft with which I was wounded was that of a common arrow, a curved arrow, a barbed, a calf-toothed, or an oleander arrow.' The man would die and those things would still remain unknown to him.
...

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 12:07 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim, can you elaborate, please?

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 12:16 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

The person Daniel described in the video didn't need any practice. He tried it once and it worked the first time. 

And if you want to stay in that mode all the time, why do you need cessaton/fruition and all the other forms of practice why can't you just practice being mindful of the space arond you?

And what about perception of duality?
The trick with room worked just fine but imagine the dissatisfaction with such small space.
It probably took the man some time until he hit whole universe as his reference until he got satisfied.
And imagine the confusion when he found everyone there...

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 1:06 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
"Samatha, "tranquility" meditation (which Daniel doesn't mention in the video), helps to turn off the stress reaction."

You sound like me back in 2010 emoticon I was only talking about Samatha and Anapanasatti and relaxing and calming , tranquility ... I was riding Samatha, Anapanasatti, calm-abiding for almost 3 years ... then shit broke loose. 

You obviously didn't come into the spot where Samatha gets ravaged by the Dark Night Nana. And no matter what you do , you fail utterly to get it back! 

What to do then I wonder?     emoticon 

If Samatha is working well for you right now, cool, good for you but please take into consideration that Samatha is not be all end all of anything. 
If we choose to believe in Karma then we can surely assume that most if not all prominent Bhikkhus have rather good Karmic points as they are where they are and are harvesting the vast fields of Jhanic goodness without it ever evaporating. 

But what about those of us who had only a few good Karmic coins in our pocket which we spend in our first 2 years of practice and then we have nothing but our sankharas left to invest? You say "relax, calm down, use the Jhanas" ... emoticon 

Maybe you too, just like Thanissaro Bhikkhu or Ajan Brahm have a vast field of food Karmic points to enjoy those Jhanas indefinite emoticon 

I really wish you all the best. Dukkha is the great redeemer. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 3:00 PM as a reply to Tom K.
     Waking up is to dis-cover and function from a “place” of non-effort. Everything done before that may have some positive results inalleviating the difficulties of daily life but is still very much in the realm of suffering. “ Staying lucid, remaining an observer” takes a lot of effort and is still splitting the mind in two. The psyche is still weighed down by that activity. 
     What Daniel did with the student was to give a glimpse of what happens when attention is expanded and the grip of a fixation is broken. The difference is, that for Daniel this expansion is, I expect, his normal way of functioning and takes no effort. 
     The sense of observing disappears when the expansion of attention becomes so broad that the sense of observing cannot take a predominant place, it is extremely diminished. In that moment the “I” we know isn't there, “But you may not look directly at my face, for no one may see me and live.” That is why the experience can only be looked back on, and when you try to find it, it's not there, you bring back the observer.  Deepening this experience and learning to live in this non-effortful way is the high end of practice.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/19/20 5:39 PM as a reply to Milo.
Milo:
Jim Smith:
Tom K:
In another clip from our podcast, Daniel describes what it's like to be Enlighented. You can watch the 10 minute clip on YouTube or Facebook.

You can also view the full podcast on YouTube or Facebook.

If you're up for it, hit us with a Subscribe to our YT Channel and a Like & Follow on our FB Page .  emoticon

I found the video interesting, I have noticed myself that mindfulness with my eyes open, being aware of the environment around me (when meditating or walking around), has an effect of diminshing unpelasant emotions (among other effects such as diminishing the sense of duality - I'm not sure if that is significant). I sometimes use it to enter jhanas. But I never equated this with being awakened. 

So, I am a little bit confused by this video. If all you have to do is think of the room, why do people spend years meditating for hours a day and go on retreats? What is the point of noting? Cessation/fruition? Fire kasina?

In MCTB Daniel discusses perception of dualities. If the question is what is it like to be enlightened, then why didn't Daniel discuss that? 

https://www.mctb.org/mctb2/table-of-contents/part-v-awakening/37-models-of-the-stages-of-awakening/a-revised-four-path-model/
...
What they [those of second path] may be most bothered by is that, despite cycle after cycle of practice, duality remains the predominant experience most of the time.
...
At the beginning of third path, most practitioners think: “I’ll just complete more cycles of insight, as I did before, and this will do the trick.” They don’t understand yet what it is they have attained, or its deeper implications. By the mature stage of third path, which for most can take months or years to show up, the practitioner is more and more able to see the selfless, centerlessness, luminosity, etc. of phenomena in real-time, so much so that it can be very difficult to notice what artificial perceptual dualities remain.

Would anyone who understands what Daniel means as duality experience, or perceptual duality, care to explain it?

Or does Daniel explain it anywhere in print or on video?

(I have had several different types of non-dual experiences myself but I don't know whether or not they have anything to do with milestones in the process of awakening - I don't really know how to define milestones of awakening because I don't follow the cessation/fruition model - I simply define awakening as "the process of letting go of attachment to self". I measure progress as "less suffering (attachment/aversion) over time". And I am interested in what other people experience.)


Thanks in advance.

There's a reason it's called practice.

Have you ever trained as an athlete? It's one thing to know the mechanics of a good tennis stroke. It's a whole other thing to put in the hundreds or thousands of hours to internalize it to the point where thought becomes instinct.

Same with this awakening project. It's spiritual athletics.
    "thought becomes instinct" - scary thought...

   athletics is a childhood disease...

   spiritual athletics, now, is a disease of adulthood...

   how about a spiritual olympics? local competitons to pick winners to go to the nationals...winner gets the title of "most void" or "most extinct"... high tech brain wave monitors and timers for those neck and neck races where one wins by a nose...


   competiton (hard work, sacrifice, commitment, no-pain-no-gain) is not the reason it's called practice...beginner's mind is not improved by "practice"...like training an animal to be quiet and patient, one can only quantify the aberrations, not the degree of pacification...it's easy to be peaceful on demand, harder to be that way all the time...

  the difference between the human qualities of patience, mercy, justice, love, and these as divine qualities is as great as that between heaven and earth...

   those who are best at articulating the nature of the tao are not the best knowers of the tao...


   
terry



tao te ching, trans mitchell


56
Those who know don't talk.
Those who talk don't know.

Close your mouth,
block off your senses,
blunt your sharpness,
untie your knots,
soften your glare,
settle your dust.
This is the primal identity.

Be like the Tao.
It can't be approached or withdrawn from,
benefited or harmed,
honored or brought into disgrace.
It gives itself up continually.
That is why it endures.




from "complete works of chuang tzu," trans burton watson:


....the world has lost the Way, and the Way has lost the world; the world and the Way have lost each other. What means does a man of the Way have to go forward in the world? What means does the world have to go forward in the Way? The Way cannot go forward in the world, and the world cannot go forward in the Way. So, although the sage does not retire to dwell in the midst of the mountain forest, his Virtue is already hidden. It is already hidden, and therefore he does not need to hide it himself.

The so-called scholars in hiding of ancient times did not conceal their bodies and refuse to let them be seen; they did not shut in their words and refuse to let them out; they did not stow away their knowledge and refuse to share it. But the fate of the times was too much awry. If the fate of the times had been with them and they could have done great deeds in the world, then they would have returned to Unity and left no trace behind. But the fate of the times was against them and brought them only great hardship in the world, and therefore they deepened their roots, rested in perfection, and waited. This was the way they kept themselves alive.

Those in ancient times who wished to keep themselves alive did not use eloquence to ornament their knowledge. They did not use their knowledge to make trouble for the world; they did not use their knowledge to make trouble for Virtue. Loftily they kept to their places and returned to their inborn nature. Having done that, what more was there for them to do? The way has no use for petty conduct; Virtue has no use for petty understanding. Petty understanding injures Virtue; petty conduct injures the Way. Therefore it is said, Rectify yourself, that is all. When joy is complete, this is called the fulfillment of ambition.

When the men of ancient times spoke of the fulfillment of ambition, they did not mean fine carriages and caps. They meant simply that joy was so complete that it could not be made greater. Nowadays, however, when men speak of the fulfillment of ambition, they mean fine carriages and caps. But carriages and caps affect the body alone, not the inborn nature and fate. Such things from time to time may happen to come your way. When they come, you cannot keep them from arriving, but when they depart you cannot stop them from going. Therefore carriages and caps are no excuse for becoming puffed up with pride, and hardship and poverty are no excuse for fawning on the vulgar. You should find the same joy in one condition as in the other and thereby be free of care, that is all. But now, when the things that happened along take their leave, you cease to be joyful. From this point of view, though you have joy, it will always be fated for destruction. Therefore it is said, Those who destroy themselves in things and lose their inborn nature in the vulgar may be called upside-down people.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/20/20 12:15 AM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Papa Che Dusko:
"Samatha, "tranquility" meditation (which Daniel doesn't mention in the video), helps to turn off the stress reaction."

You sound like me back in 2010 emoticon I was only talking about Samatha and Anapanasatti and relaxing and calming , tranquility ... I was riding Samatha, Anapanasatti, calm-abiding for almost 3 years ... then shit broke loose. 

You obviously didn't come into the spot where Samatha gets ravaged by the Dark Night Nana. And no matter what you do , you fail utterly to get it back! 

What to do then I wonder?     emoticon 

If Samatha is working well for you right now, cool, good for you but please take into consideration that Samatha is not be all end all of anything. 
If we choose to believe in Karma then we can surely assume that most if not all prominent Bhikkhus have rather good Karmic points as they are where they are and are harvesting the vast fields of Jhanic goodness without it ever evaporating. 

But what about those of us who had only a few good Karmic coins in our pocket which we spend in our first 2 years of practice and then we have nothing but our sankharas left to invest? You say "relax, calm down, use the Jhanas" ... emoticon 

Maybe you too, just like Thanissaro Bhikkhu or Ajan Brahm have a vast field of food Karmic points to enjoy those Jhanas indefinite emoticon 

I really wish you all the best. Dukkha is the great redeemer. 

I understand everyone is different and some people will have unique situations.

The point I was trying to make is that there is scientific explanation for what the Buddha said about samatha and vipassana both being important. Relaxation turns off the stress response, vipassana turns off the default mode network it's a two pronged approach to ending dukkha.

If someone is getting unpleasant results from samatha meditation, They could try relaxation exercises as a substitute if they didn't want to neglect that aspect entirely.

If I only had 30 minutes a day to practice buddhism, I would still start with relaxation exercises.

Most kinds of relaxation exercises will realx you (turn off the stress response) and also deactivate your default mode network because they cause you to focus your attention on doing the technique and on your body as you do the technique.

In the past I have had difficulty with samatha meditation - meditating on the breath, not metta, not jhana, just counting the breath if my mind was turbulent or observing the breath if my mind was calmer. I found I was concentrating too hard and it was making me irritable and putting me in a bad mood - I think I was suppressing thoughts and emotions. I found the solution was to change the way I concentrated, instead of concentrating intensely like  I was looking for a lost object, I started  to concentrate in a relaxed way like I was looking at a beautiful sunset, and breathe in a realxing way. It changed the practice completely. After that I started experiencing the jhanas without knowing what they were. Later when I better understood the relaxation component and started to prepare with relaxation exercises I am able to do more intense concentration if I want to. (I don't have a teacher and I am always trying new things and my practice is continually evolving and in flux.)

Like most people my mood chages up and down for various reasons or seemingly no reason. If I am not in a good mood when I sit down to meditate I don't do anything fancy no jahanas, no intense vipassana, just noticing realxing breathing. I might ask myself why I am in a bad mood and try digging through layers of answers to up root attachments and aversions. 

I've also found my diet affects my mood and meditation practice. I am on a diet now where eat a reduced amount of carbs, about 600 calories from carbs per day,  and I find that helps a lot with meditation too.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/20/20 1:54 AM as a reply to terry.
terry:
Milo:
Jim Smith:
Tom K:
In another clip from our podcast, Daniel describes what it's like to be Enlighented. You can watch the 10 minute clip on YouTube or Facebook.

You can also view the full podcast on YouTube or Facebook.

If you're up for it, hit us with a Subscribe to our YT Channel and a Like & Follow on our FB Page .  emoticon

I found the video interesting, I have noticed myself that mindfulness with my eyes open, being aware of the environment around me (when meditating or walking around), has an effect of diminshing unpelasant emotions (among other effects such as diminishing the sense of duality - I'm not sure if that is significant). I sometimes use it to enter jhanas. But I never equated this with being awakened. 

So, I am a little bit confused by this video. If all you have to do is think of the room, why do people spend years meditating for hours a day and go on retreats? What is the point of noting? Cessation/fruition? Fire kasina?

In MCTB Daniel discusses perception of dualities. If the question is what is it like to be enlightened, then why didn't Daniel discuss that? 

https://www.mctb.org/mctb2/table-of-contents/part-v-awakening/37-models-of-the-stages-of-awakening/a-revised-four-path-model/
...
What they [those of second path] may be most bothered by is that, despite cycle after cycle of practice, duality remains the predominant experience most of the time.
...
At the beginning of third path, most practitioners think: “I’ll just complete more cycles of insight, as I did before, and this will do the trick.” They don’t understand yet what it is they have attained, or its deeper implications. By the mature stage of third path, which for most can take months or years to show up, the practitioner is more and more able to see the selfless, centerlessness, luminosity, etc. of phenomena in real-time, so much so that it can be very difficult to notice what artificial perceptual dualities remain.

Would anyone who understands what Daniel means as duality experience, or perceptual duality, care to explain it?

Or does Daniel explain it anywhere in print or on video?

(I have had several different types of non-dual experiences myself but I don't know whether or not they have anything to do with milestones in the process of awakening - I don't really know how to define milestones of awakening because I don't follow the cessation/fruition model - I simply define awakening as "the process of letting go of attachment to self". I measure progress as "less suffering (attachment/aversion) over time". And I am interested in what other people experience.)


Thanks in advance.

There's a reason it's called practice.

Have you ever trained as an athlete? It's one thing to know the mechanics of a good tennis stroke. It's a whole other thing to put in the hundreds or thousands of hours to internalize it to the point where thought becomes instinct.

Same with this awakening project. It's spiritual athletics.
    "thought becomes instinct" - scary thought...

   athletics is a childhood disease...

   spiritual athletics, now, is a disease of adulthood...

   how about a spiritual olympics? local competitons to pick winners to go to the nationals...winner gets the title of "most void" or "most extinct"... high tech brain wave monitors and timers for those neck and neck races where one wins by a nose...


   competiton (hard work, sacrifice, commitment, no-pain-no-gain) is not the reason it's called practice...beginner's mind is not improved by "practice"...like training an animal to be quiet and patient, one can only quantify the aberrations, not the degree of pacification...it's easy to be peaceful on demand, harder to be that way all the time...

  the difference between the human qualities of patience, mercy, justice, love, and these as divine qualities is as great as that between heaven and earth...

   those who are best at articulating the nature of the tao are not the best knowers of the tao...


   
terry



tao te ching, trans mitchell


56
Those who know don't talk.
Those who talk don't know.

Close your mouth,
block off your senses,
blunt your sharpness,
untie your knots,
soften your glare,
settle your dust.
This is the primal identity.

Be like the Tao.
It can't be approached or withdrawn from,
benefited or harmed,
honored or brought into disgrace.
It gives itself up continually.
That is why it endures.




from "complete works of chuang tzu," trans burton watson:


....the world has lost the Way, and the Way has lost the world; the world and the Way have lost each other. What means does a man of the Way have to go forward in the world? What means does the world have to go forward in the Way? The Way cannot go forward in the world, and the world cannot go forward in the Way. So, although the sage does not retire to dwell in the midst of the mountain forest, his Virtue is already hidden. It is already hidden, and therefore he does not need to hide it himself.

The so-called scholars in hiding of ancient times did not conceal their bodies and refuse to let them be seen; they did not shut in their words and refuse to let them out; they did not stow away their knowledge and refuse to share it. But the fate of the times was too much awry. If the fate of the times had been with them and they could have done great deeds in the world, then they would have returned to Unity and left no trace behind. But the fate of the times was against them and brought them only great hardship in the world, and therefore they deepened their roots, rested in perfection, and waited. This was the way they kept themselves alive.

Those in ancient times who wished to keep themselves alive did not use eloquence to ornament their knowledge. They did not use their knowledge to make trouble for the world; they did not use their knowledge to make trouble for Virtue. Loftily they kept to their places and returned to their inborn nature. Having done that, what more was there for them to do? The way has no use for petty conduct; Virtue has no use for petty understanding. Petty understanding injures Virtue; petty conduct injures the Way. Therefore it is said, Rectify yourself, that is all. When joy is complete, this is called the fulfillment of ambition.

When the men of ancient times spoke of the fulfillment of ambition, they did not mean fine carriages and caps. They meant simply that joy was so complete that it could not be made greater. Nowadays, however, when men speak of the fulfillment of ambition, they mean fine carriages and caps. But carriages and caps affect the body alone, not the inborn nature and fate. Such things from time to time may happen to come your way. When they come, you cannot keep them from arriving, but when they depart you cannot stop them from going. Therefore carriages and caps are no excuse for becoming puffed up with pride, and hardship and poverty are no excuse for fawning on the vulgar. You should find the same joy in one condition as in the other and thereby be free of care, that is all. But now, when the things that happened along take their leave, you cease to be joyful. From this point of view, though you have joy, it will always be fated for destruction. Therefore it is said, Those who destroy themselves in things and lose their inborn nature in the vulgar may be called upside-down people.

True, maybe that's not the best metaphor. No, awakening is not a competition, but it's important to realize if you're working in the MCTB framework, getting a glimpse of nibbana is the beginning of practice, not the end. The emphasis in this particular vehicle is on integration - translating that epiphany into a profound shift in your baseline, everyday frame of reference that ends suffering in this very life.

I'm anticipating this will open a huge can of worms with regard to the Zen perspective and just sitting. For the record, I lean towards a difference of emphasis rather than substance between these two vehicles, but feel free to differ. As long as it ends with your baseline shifting and suffering ending in this very life, it seems the vehicle has done its job.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/20/20 2:06 AM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Papa Che Dusko:

Dark Night Nana

It is either "Dark Night" or "dukkha nana"

Besides using "dark night" in this context is an absuse ot the term. Originally (by St. John of the Cross) it was supposed to mean whole period between loosing naive faith in God and gaining true faith in God, no matter if you yourself feel bad or good.

In this meaning anyone who does not find God directly is in in the "dark night of soul".

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/20/20 2:23 AM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
Papa Che Dusko:

Dark Night Nana

It is either "Dark Night" or "dukkha nana"

Besides using "dark night" in this context is an absuse ot the term. Originally (by St. John of the Cross) it was supposed to mean whole period between loosing naive faith in God and gaining true faith in God, no matter if you yourself feel bad or good.

In this meaning anyone who does not find God directly is in in the "dark night of soul".

I was never politically correct mate! Don't go chasing waterfalls ;) Fuck Wikipedia! LOL 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/20/20 2:30 AM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Please do not insult aunt Wiki emoticon

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/20/20 2:49 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Milo:

There's a reason it's called practice.

Have you ever trained as an athlete? It's one thing to know the mechanics of a good tennis stroke. It's a whole other thing to put in the hundreds or thousands of hours to internalize it to the point where thought becomes instinct.

Same with this awakening project. It's spiritual athletics.

The person Daniel described in the video didn't need any practice. He tried it once and it worked the first time. 

And if you want to stay in that mode all the time, why do you need cessaton/fruition and all the other forms of practice why can't you just practice being mindful of the space arond you?

And what about perception of duality?

I'm thinking of practice more broadly, not just this one technique.

The practitioner in Daniel's example had been doing some kind of practice already and hit a hangup. Daniel used a trick to push them past that hangup and as a result they got a glimpse of the shift in reference they should be orienting to in their practice.

It's not stated explicitly, but most likely that was a temporary, hard to hold onto state for that practitioner and it reverted soon after to a normal 'dualistic' reference frame. With Daniel it's different. The 'non-dualistic' frame of reference has become his baseline, day to day, walking around relationship with the world and with his own thoughts and emotions.

Daniel used that practitioner's temporary shift to illustrate his own, now constant, frame of reference. That way it's relateable to the interviewer who has also probably only experienced something like that briefly if at all. Daniel then goes on to talk about how inhabiting this different frame of reference accomplishes the goal of reducing suffering in this very life.

The difference between the practitioner's ability to be in that frame of reference and Daniel's, and the resulting difference in experience of suffering, is the reason for practice.

We've built up all kinds of defenses, denials, forces of habit, and psychological dependencies, on the 'dualistic' reference frame. When we experience the 'non dual' reference frame, it's these things that eventually pull us back out of it. They are mostly non-surface level. What practice does is bring them to the surface so they can be examined through the three characteristics. This resolves the hangups, chipping away at the hindrances to staying in the 'non dualistic' reference frame where suffering is much less.

Hope that helps!

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/20/20 4:28 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

I understand everyone is different and some people will have unique situations.

The point I was trying to make is that there is scientific explanation for what the Buddha said about samatha and vipassana both being important. Relaxation turns off the stress response, vipassana turns off the default mode network it's a two pronged approach to ending dukkha.

If someone is getting unpleasant results from samatha meditation, They could try relaxation exercises as a substitute if they didn't want to neglect that aspect entirely.

If I only had 30 minutes a day to practice buddhism, I would still start with relaxation exercises.

Most kinds of relaxation exercises will realx you (turn off the stress response) and also deactivate your default mode network because they cause you to focus your attention on doing the technique and on your body as you do the technique.

In the past I have had difficulty with samatha meditation - meditating on the breath, not metta, not jhana, just counting the breath if my mind was turbulent or observing the breath if my mind was calmer. I found I was concentrating too hard and it was making me irritable and putting me in a bad mood - I think I was suppressing thoughts and emotions. I found the solution was to change the way I concentrated, instead of concentrating intensely like  I was looking for a lost object, I started  to concentrate in a relaxed way like I was looking at a beautiful sunset, and breathe in a realxing way. It changed the practice completely. After that I started experiencing the jhanas without knowing what they were. Later when I better understood the relaxation component and started to prepare with relaxation exercises I am able to do more intense concentration if I want to. (I don't have a teacher and I am always trying new things and my practice is continually evolving and in flux.)

Like most people my mood chages up and down for various reasons or seemingly no reason. If I am not in a good mood when I sit down to meditate I don't do anything fancy no jahanas, no intense vipassana, just noticing realxing breathing. I might ask myself why I am in a bad mood and try digging through layers of answers to up root attachments and aversions. 

I've also found my diet affects my mood and meditation practice. I am on a diet now where eat a reduced amount of carbs, about 600 calories from carbs per day,  and I find that helps a lot with meditation too.


Starting with relaxation is perfectly fine. I do too. Some versions of Buddhism would say that it connects you to your inner Buddha nature, that is, if you are able to glimpse or rest in the ground of being. Maybe Dzogchen is your thing? (Edited to add: Or Mahamudra?)

Diet is crucial for me too. It effects my meditation immensely, not to mention my health, so I make sure to take care of my mammalian body including the brain (with a different diet than yours, though, as my needs differ).

What I don’t understand is why you keep insisting that relaxing and taking care of your wellbeing means being enlightened. Why is that so important to you?

Please also understand that not everyone can or want to do this. Like you said, everyone is different. There are lots of people who need to keep their mind busy during meditation in order to get anything out of it, or simply really enjoy it. There are multitudes of approaches. Just because something works great for you, that doesn’t mean that it will save the entire humanity. 

Edited to add: It sounds to me like you are doing what I would call zhine without an object rather than Theravadan shamatha. It focuses more on open relaxation and letting go of any object rather than focusing on a single object. It aims at easing into the ground of being, which is insight practice but not with any of the active methods that Theravadan practices start out with. It's a great practice. I don't know if you ever read my posts in your threads, but I would find it interesting to hear if this resonates with you. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/20/20 10:49 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Maybe thanks to your healing work, Jim, you have easier access to the ground of being, with less of a dualistic split. That would explain a lot, because if so, methods within a dualistic framework would make little sense as you can just drop into it without that detour. I have no way of telling whether that is the case for you, but if it is, just relaxing into it is probably the best thing you can do - not only for your wellbeing but also for insight. That is how the switch is eventually flipped. Whether or not you notice the cessations that some of us would say probably happen on the way doesn't matter. In traditions that focus on this way in from the start, that kind of detailed phenomenology is usually not applied (and may even be seen as ridiculous). It works anyway, for those who can just drop into it (which is not the case for everyone). On the other hand, they often do pay a lot of attention to how diet and body posture affect the alignment of the energy channels. In my (limited) experience, those things are more relevant for that approach than for vipassana, because energy blockages or whatever one calls it can make the ground of being more clouded. So maybe you know exactly what works best for you. Insight isn't an intellectual endeavor. It can be relaxed into, probably must be relaxed into, when the relaxation isn't blocked by stuff that neads to be seen through first. 

Michael Taft describes it as dropping into it vs drilling down to it. Vipassana is the drilling down. Drilling is something that can be done when dropping into it isn't available. Eventually it makes it available. Regardless of how it becomes available, glimpsing it is only the start. Then there will be what could perhaps be described as a continuous shift of figure and ground until they collapse into each other in a way that takes away the dualistic split permanently, and with it lots of unnecessary struggling and resistance. 

A great strength of vipassana is that it can be applied in all kinds of situations. It isn't vulnerable as it doesn't depend on open channels. Hindrances and all sorts of stuff that make shamatha and zhine and the ground of being inaccessible, that's just great fuel for the vipassana practice. When you use vipassana like that, it's impossible to fail. I practice Dzogchen now and I love it, but vipassana is a great toolkit to fall back on when the terrain is too thick. Vipassana is what got me on the path, because I needed something I couldn't fail in. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/21/20 3:19 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
I have been trying to keep my default mode network inactive as much as possible by practicing mindfulness as much as possible.

When I try to observe emotions with the default network inactive,  emotions seem to be "wispy little things" as Daniel described in Tom's video. And I don't get caught up in the story they are telling as if it was reality. So it is much easier to see emotions as impersonal sensations rather than facts of reality that need a defensive or agressive response. (Before I understood what Daniel said in the video about how deactivating the default mode network affects emotions, I would not pay much attention to emotions when my default mode network was inactive because they were so faint they didn't seem to be causing problems and didn't need attention.  When I would observe emotions, it was when the default mode network active. This change is how the video influenced my practice).

As impersonal sensations, emotions no longer seem like they are "mine", or that they are telling a story about "me" they are more impersonal like seeing something outside my body is impersonal. So I don't feel egoistic reactions like offense, or outrage, or defensiveness, or agressiveness, when "unpleasant" things happen. It's like if a child tried to throw a snowball at me and missed. All of those reactions would reinforce my sense of self. Without that reinforcement my sense of self ... 

I can also see how emotions, when you think they are "mine", make you deduce the existence of a self.

All of this also provides a way to understand physical discomfort. When I notice physical discomfort, I try to notice the emotions caused by the physical sensations and observe how the emotions change when the default mode network becomes inactive.

Anyway, I am finding it very instructive to try to observe emotions from a mindful state where the the default mode network is inactive. By a "mindful state" I mean just noticing my surroundings, or just noticing what I am doing while I am doing it, or noticing all the sensations that come into my awareness. I can tell when I get distracted and the default mode network becomes active (it's just like when your mind wanders during meditation) and when I notice that, I go back to some type of mindfulness practice. Another thing that tells me the default mode network is becoming active is if I feel more than just a wisp of an emotion, that is a more sensitive indicator, it acts like a biofeedback signal that reminds me to remain fully mindful.

A very nice way to do this practice is to go for a walk and notice what I see as I look around and focus the mind on a feeling of spaciousness.

It produces a feeling of a lack of separation.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/21/20 2:30 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Then I'd say you are practicing something very Dzogchen-like and it seems to work well. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 4:25 AM as a reply to shargrol.
shargrol:
Jim Smith:

To be lucid with respect to your own mind means to be aware of the activity in your mind as if you were an observer, not a participant like when you are watching a movie and become so drawn in to it that you forget where you are and react as if the movie was real. To be lucid with respect to the activity of your mind, is to observe your thoughts emotions and impulses but not to get drawn into them so that they take over your mind and you forget you are observing them and start reacting to them.

By staying lucid, by remaining an observer, you stay out of the default network where emotions can be so much more troublesome.

Well, that's only the first step. The next step (and the step that enlightenment is all about) is figuring out what it means to observe. What observes that it is observing? How do you know? emoticon

1) Observer is just a word used to communicate an action. 2) When you are fully involved in observing, there is no observer.

https://www.lionsroar.com/on-enlightenment-an-interview-with-shinzen-young/
1)

On Enlightenment – An Interview with Shinzen Young
BY ANDREA MILLER| SEPTEMBER 10, 2009
...
Buddhists formulate the “shift in perception of I-am-ness” as “there truly is no self.” The Buddhists say enlightenment is to realize there is no Atma, which is interpreted as self-as-thing. Within a lot of Hinduism the very same experience is described as discovering the True Self in a way that implies it’s a thing—the Witness, the True Observer, Pure Consciousness, etc. Most Hindu teachers say enlightenment is to find the Atma, which is interpreted as the True Perceiver, or the Nature of consciousness that’s in some way behind all the appearances. You might think they’re talking about completely different experiences but as far as I can see they’re using different descriptions in talking about the same thing.

When you interact and talk with the Hindu babas and the Buddhist masters you get the same body language and vibe. It seems the same re-engineering of the human has taken place in both cases, but the language they use to describe this sounds antithetical.
...

2)
The only difference between an enlightened person and a non-enlightened person is that when the feel-image-talk self doesn’t arise during the day, the enlightened person notices that and knows that to be a clear experience of no-self. The non-enlightened person actually has that experience hundreds of times a day, when they’re briefly pulled to a physical-type touch or an external sight or sound. For just a moment there is just the world of touch-sight-sound. For just a moment there is no self inside that person but they don’t notice it! But just because they don’t notice it doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened.

An enlightened person sees everyone as constantly experiencing brief moments of enlightenment during the day. So paradoxically being an enlightened person doesn’t make you that special. Now you can say, “Well, but they don’t realize it,” that’s one way to look at it, but it’s also undeniable that they are. From that perspective it’s very misleading to separate enlightened people from non-enlightened people.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 6:54 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Existence of observer isn't even an issue. The issue is that it should be momentary on-demand thing but it is persistent and obstruct perceptions. We experience mostly this perspective of observer that lack many qualities which could otherwise be present and would make overall perception much better, nicer.

Mind is normally not flexible enough to quickly switch perspectives and clings to perspectives because it is afraid of different perspectives so it is hard to experience something for one moment and then something else next moment. With practice that changes, there is now flexibility and there is enough experience with different perspectives that mind is comfortable using them. Though what can happen and what happens is that mind switch what it is comfortable with and people replace apples with oranges and call it enlightenment. Been there, done that and this is not the way, even if it matches descriptions of non-duality.

The default should be complete cessation of mind and all perspectives should be momentary and on-demand with this does/observer perspectives available just like any other perspective is. It should merely feel like these perspectives are not happening on its own all the damn time instead of they were removed because nothing should be blocked/removed.

IMHO

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 8:00 AM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:

The default should be complete cessation of mind and all perspectives should be momentary and on-demand with this does/observer perspectives available just like any other perspective is. It should merely feel like these perspectives are not happening on its own all the damn time instead of they were removed because nothing should be blocked/removed.

Ah, so that's what you have been meaning the entire time. That makes sense. That doesn't sound dualistic. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 7:05 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:


https://www.lionsroar.com/on-enlightenment-an-interview-with-shinzen-young/

...
On Enlightenment – An Interview with Shinzen Young
BY ANDREA MILLER| SEPTEMBER 10, 2009
...

The only difference between an enlightened person and a non-enlightened person is that when the feel-image-talk self doesn’t arise during the day, the enlightened person notices that and knows that to be a clear experience of no-self. The non-enlightened person actually has that experience hundreds of times a day, when they’re briefly pulled to a physical-type touch or an external sight or sound. For just a moment there is just the world of touch-sight-sound. For just a moment there is no self inside that person but they don’t notice it! But just because they don’t notice it doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened.

An enlightened person sees everyone as constantly experiencing brief moments of enlightenment during the day. So paradoxically being an enlightened person doesn’t make you that special. Now you can say, “Well, but they don’t realize it,” that’s one way to look at it, but it’s also undeniable that they are. From that perspective it’s very misleading to separate enlightened people from non-enlightened people.


I found it very instructive to go for a walk and try to notice those no-self moments. I highly recommend it.  No-self moments are when something you see or hear catches your attention and you are aware of it without thinking about anything else. It will help if your mind is already quiet from practicing meditation or mindfulness so that you can pay attention and not be distracted by mental chatter.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 9:49 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
I notice that too and I'm not done. Great practice, though. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 10:08 AM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Honestly, I think anyone who needs criteria to establish that they are awakened, are not done yet. I wouldn't know, though, because I'm not done. At the same time, I think it's probably not a bad idea at all to use criteria for practice ideas. That's skillful usage of the criteria. Again, since I'm not done, I don't actually know that either, so take it with a pinch of salt. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 11:31 AM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
The default should be complete cessation of mind and all perspectives should be momentary and on-demand with this does/observer perspectives available just like any other perspective is. It should merely feel like these perspectives are not happening on its own all the damn time instead of they were removed because nothing should be blocked/removed.

This is well said - and I agree with all of it with the one exception of the complete cessation of mind part!

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 12:54 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
How do you define mind? Chris? Ni Nurta? It seems to be one of those words that people use very differently. I thought that what Ni Nurta was referring to might be what many others refer to as the doer, whereas he uses the word doer about the same way as Chris uses the word self in arguing that the notion of no self is wrong. From other things that Ni Nurta has written, it is clear to me that he is not suggesting unconsciousness or being a zombie or a robot or renouncing worldly concerns. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 1:40 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
I have read somewhere that mind is the thing that solves issues hence the use of the term.
You have the issue and your have cogs turning inside your head to solve the issue. Pressure you feel to solve the issue that drives you forward with the topic of the issue is the mind.

Mind is needed to solve issues but you do not need to create issues. Once intuition is learned it can be used to operate in the world and it is far more efficient. Even momentary acknowledgement there is an issue will start mind to do its thing. Intuition does show you what it knows and it knows a lot if you use it.

When you see object you have an issue: "what is this thing?". Mind starts, you experience yourself thinking and you then know. Your mind did its job, solved the issue. If you see the clock but not create any issues out of it then intuition will still do some kind of processing on it. If you have question about it because you need it then the you do not create issues because processing has been done and answers are already there. "This is a clock, it tells time, it is 20:27"

Rather crude example but shows the difference in attitude. It is attitude which makes the difference in the experience. If you make issue out of everything then you start making issues out of your goddamn (sense of) self, you experience everything that hits your senses as stream of endless issues to solve by mind. Then you experience of life looks like struggle with reality, you experience dukkha. It is inefficient, it is tiring, it makes you miserable. When you attitude is to experience mind all the time and you cling to it for whatever pleasure you get from using mind then it makes you unenlightened, not able to use intuition.

I am not even saying mind is wrong or one should not use it. It has its uses like everything. Sometimes it is useful. When it is used in moderation and in cooperation with intuition it is more efficient, does not cause dukkha. It is all about knowing how to use your faculties efficiently. If I use mind for short time I do not need it to be there anymore. The results that mind created are available for intuition. Doing it that way also makes mind to appear less and less when dealing with similar things.

Again existence of mind == you have issue to solve.
If you unlearn to use mind and learn to use intuition you do not experience issues in your life. It is actually scary to let go of thinking of everything as an issue to solve, to stop feeding the mind. Experience of hunger starts when you stop feeding mind with issues after is has been constantly fed. Like any kind of hunger it needs discipline and time and pass away.

Observer, doer, mind, etc. are all separate concepts. Confusing them leads to ignorance, the last stumbling block to being really free.

EDIT://
I do not experience body image because it was something created by mind.
In the past my awareness was so entrenched with workings of mind that I could not view myself checking how I feel as anything more than stream of issues to solve.
Without mind experience of body is such that only raw sensual data is experienced and is not tainted with taste of mind. It fades away quickly and can be of any presentation available to mind eg. jhanic, nibbana, whatever. I can use mind just fine if I like and being able to somehow eat cake and have it too I view as the way to go. Same is for sense of self and even my past non-synesthetic experience of the world. Everything should be available in the instant it is needed for only as long as it is needed, any part of psyche, any mind state. Imho that is how one should train her/himself.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 1:46 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
How do you define mind? Chris? Ni Nurta? 

I'm sorry I posted the caveat. I'd prefer to focus on our agreement, not on this one difference. Your question deserves an appropriate, nuanced answer, but that's something I don't have time to supply right now.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 2:26 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
How do you define mind? Chris? Ni Nurta? 

I'm sorry I posted the caveat. I'd prefer to focus on our agreement, not on this one difference. Your question deserves an appropriate, nuanced answer, but that's something I don't have time to supply right now.

Fair enough. Thanks for both taking care of your boundaries and being explicit about them in a respectful way. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 2:42 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Thanks for a very interesting reply, Ni Nurta! I think I understand. The word I use for it is self-grasping, which is a term I have come across in the dharma and interpreted like this. Whether it is the intended use of that term, I don't know. Anyay, I really wish to not have that as the default. For me it switches on and off beyond my control. Control is a bad wording because it sort of presupposes the self-grasping, but I don't know what other word to use. I think Daniel talks about flipping the switch. 

I think I was wrong about you taking another kind of path before. It sounds like you have been liberated in the way I wish to be liberated. Maybe you are an arahant and have developed siddhis. I'm really not qualified to do any diagnosing, though. Just trying to compensate now for my blabbering mouth (or typing fingers) before. emoticon

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 5:17 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Job of Bodhisattva is to liberate others, not oneself. Whatever that means.
Cuz, you know, U ain't sheet in any world until you get a job. That is the meaning of 5th path.
I know how to extrapolate and this is my best power so far =P

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/22/20 6:15 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
Job of Bodhisattva is to liberate others, not oneself.

Yes. It just seems easier to do that with less self-grasping. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 1:12 AM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
I thought that the true nature of mind can not be seen. "Not even Buddha can see it and yet both Samsara and Nirvana arise from it". Isn't this from the teaching on Mahamudra? 

If it can't be seen then it is waste of energy trying to see it no? Kenneth mention that Very Act of "Looking Towards (that which can't be seen)" is as far as it goes in knowing the true nature of mind. 
So what is in that Very Act of looking? Wonder. Simple unefforted wonderius looking.

Basically we can be awake to Samsara and Nirvana, but the true nature of Mind remains to be the mystical number 42 emoticon (always know where your towel is and Don't Panic) emoticon 


P.s. I hope you don't mind my rumbling. I'm having me first morning coffee and am laughing emoticon It's good to laugh a little. Thank you for such topics! 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 6:51 PM as a reply to Tom K.
There seems to be a correlation between Daniel's model involving the default mode network, and Shinzen Young's model of FIT vs TSS (Feeling image talking) vs (touch sight sound)

In ordinary (FIT) consciousness which is emotional, verbal, and involves imagery the default mode network would be active.

In no-self or non-dual consciousness (TSS) where there is only awareness of sensations: touch, sight sound, etc. the default mode network would be inacative.

I mentioned an a previous post in this thread then when my default mode network is inactive and emotions are only "wispy little things" as Daniel describes it, that I don't react egoistically to "unpleasant" situations. So there is a correlation to reduced suffering, non-dual experience, and "ego-death".

I am still trying to understand Shinzen's views but it seems to me that he referrs to no-self (or non-dual) experiences of varying intensities and the implication is that the quiet meditative mind when focused on sense perceptions like seeing and hearing is a form of no-self experience. This is something most people who meditate experience.

https://www.lionsroar.com/on-enlightenment-an-interview-with-shinzen-young/
On Enlightenment – An Interview with Shinzen Young
BY ANDREA MILLER| SEPTEMBER 10, 2009
...
Enlightened people have three kinds of no-self experiences. 

In the first subjective elements of self simply don’t arise. Subjective space vanishes. As the process of enlightenment deepens you experience longer and longer durations during which little or no subjective activity needs to arise. 

In the second emotion in the body and visual thinking and verbal thinking all arise, perhaps even intensely, but because there is so much clarity and equanimity present you’re not caught in them. 

In the third the subjective elements arise and you do get caught in them but some part of you still knows this experience is a wave called body-mind, not a particle called self.


I am also still trying to understand how Shinzen advises people to practice, but I suspect his methods involve observing and comparing FIT consciousness to TSS consciousness and trying to cultivate stronger and purer TSS consciousness. In a way meditators do that whenever they return to meditation after their mind has wandered.

Is that all you have to do: cultivate a quiet mind and stay focused on sensory input and you will develop a gradual and continuous increase in your level of enlightenment?

This seem like a much simpler and more straightforward approach to the dharma, I am wondering if there is more to it than that.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 12:05 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
It seems that there is a misunderstanding here.
This is something most people who meditate experience.

When Shinzen says that there is no self when you looking at a flower, he says that you merge with that flower and become one with it. There is NO subjective experience according to him. It doesn't say experiencing TSS with a quiet mind, unless by quiet you mean what he means. Otherwise most meditators would have many cessations each day!

I am not sure, but I think Shinzen's description matchs the descriptions of High Equanimity to Conformity Knowledge nanas in MCTB, and the third one in thr quote above matchs with description of formations in the Equanimity nana in MCTB..

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 12:00 PM as a reply to Siavash.
Siavash:
It seems that there is a misunderstanding here.
This is something most people who meditate experience.

When Shinzen says that there is no self when you looking at a flower, he says that you merge with that flower and become one with it. There is NO subjective experience according to him. It doesn't say experiencing TSS with a quiet mind, unless by quiet you mean what he means. Otherwise most meditators would have many cessations each day!

Do you have a reference for that. I think the quote I provided supports what I wrote. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 1:03 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Siavash:
It seems that there is a misunderstanding here.
This is something most people who meditate experience.

When Shinzen says that there is no self when you looking at a flower, he says that you merge with that flower and become one with it. There is NO subjective experience according to him. It doesn't say experiencing TSS with a quiet mind, unless by quiet you mean what he means. Otherwise most meditators would have many cessations each day!

Do you have a reference for that. I think the quote I provided supports what I wrote. 



Please listen to this talk, and compare it with the quote you have above from Shinzen, and compare it with the description of formations and doors to fruition in MCTB:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zL-oEF2lQRI

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 12:16 PM as a reply to Siavash.
And also when he says "enough concentration" or "absorbtion level concentration", or "extraordinary concentratio or mindfulness", he means at least 4th jhana level concentration. You should see it in that context.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 12:23 PM as a reply to Siavash.
Siavash:
And also when he says "enough concentration" or "absorbtion level concentration", or "extraordinary concentratio or mindfulness", he means at least 4th jhana level concentration. You should see it in that context.


Can you provide some references? The quote I gave yesterday is pretty clear that he is talking about mundane experineces when he uses the term "no self".


Jim Smith:


https://www.lionsroar.com/on-enlightenment-an-interview-with-shinzen-young/

...
On Enlightenment – An Interview with Shinzen Young
BY ANDREA MILLER| SEPTEMBER 10, 2009
...

The only difference between an enlightened person and a non-enlightened person is that when the feel-image-talk self doesn’t arise during the day, the enlightened person notices that and knows that to be a clear experience of no-self. The non-enlightened person actually has that experience hundreds of times a day, when they’re briefly pulled to a physical-type touch or an external sight or sound. For just a moment there is just the world of touch-sight-sound. For just a moment there is no self inside that person but they don’t notice it! But just because they don’t notice it doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened.

An enlightened person sees everyone as constantly experiencing brief moments of enlightenment during the day. So paradoxically being an enlightened person doesn’t make you that special. Now you can say, “Well, but they don’t realize it,” that’s one way to look at it, but it’s also undeniable that they are. From that perspective it’s very misleading to separate enlightened people from non-enlightened people.


It's your interpretation that would require hundreds of cessations per day not mine.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 12:23 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
You have enough references if you REALLY want to understand what he is talking about.
Just listen to the talks in that channel. And in the expandcontract channel.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 12:40 PM as a reply to Siavash.
Siavash:
You have enough references if you REALLY want to understand what he is talking about.
Just listen to the talks in that channel. And in the expandcontract channel.


Yes, I have enough references, I gave two direct quotes to support my point.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 1:14 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
One can find quotes to support basically anything if taken out of context and projecting other connotations to words. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/23/20 2:50 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Papa Che Dusko:
I thought that the true nature of mind can not be seen. "Not even Buddha can see it and yet both Samsara and Nirvana arise from it". Isn't this from the teaching on Mahamudra?
It is the arts that give existence its meaing.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/24/20 4:20 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
There seems to be a correlation between Daniel's model involving the default mode network, and Shinzen Young's model of FIT vs TSS (Feeling image talking) vs (touch sight sound)

In ordinary (FIT) consciousness which is emotional, verbal, and involves imagery the default mode network would be active.

In no-self or non-dual consciousness (TSS) where there is only awareness of sensations: touch, sight sound, etc. the default mode network would be inacative.

I mentioned an a previous post in this thread then when my default mode network is inactive and emotions are only "wispy little things" as Daniel describes it, that I don't react egoistically to "unpleasant" situations. So there is a correlation to reduced suffering, non-dual experience, and "ego-death".

I am still trying to understand Shinzen's views but it seems to me that he referrs to no-self (or non-dual) experiences of varying intensities and the implication is that the quiet meditative mind when focused on sense perceptions like seeing and hearing is a form of no-self experience. This is something most people who meditate experience.

https://www.lionsroar.com/on-enlightenment-an-interview-with-shinzen-young/
On Enlightenment – An Interview with Shinzen Young
BY ANDREA MILLER| SEPTEMBER 10, 2009
...
Enlightened people have three kinds of no-self experiences. 

In the first subjective elements of self simply don’t arise. Subjective space vanishes. As the process of enlightenment deepens you experience longer and longer durations during which little or no subjective activity needs to arise. 

In the second emotion in the body and visual thinking and verbal thinking all arise, perhaps even intensely, but because there is so much clarity and equanimity present you’re not caught in them. 

In the third the subjective elements arise and you do get caught in them but some part of you still knows this experience is a wave called body-mind, not a particle called self.


I am also still trying to understand how Shinzen advises people to practice, but I suspect his methods involve observing and comparing FIT consciousness to TSS consciousness and trying to cultivate stronger and purer TSS consciousness. In a way meditators do that whenever they return to meditation after their mind has wandered.

Is that all you have to do: cultivate a quiet mind and stay focused on sensory input and you will develop a gradual and continuous increase in your level of enlightenment?

This seem like a much simpler and more straightforward approach to the dharma, I am wondering if there is more to it than that.

I crossed out the reference to non-dual in this post. The term is used in a lot of different ways in a lot of differnt situations and I think it might be confusing in this context. The term no-self is in my opinon entirely justified by the quotes I have given to support it's use.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/24/20 4:42 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
One question I have about the video interview with Daniel in the opening post, is that when he explains what enlightenment is like, he says his emotions are reduced to "wispy little things" because keeping his mind focused on the outside deactivates the default mode network.

However I thougth the emotional changes that accompany enlightenment ("end" of suffering/dukkha) are due to having a correct understanding of the illusory nature of self and it is that understanding that produces a permanent change.

It seems to me that implicit in Daniel not mentioning it, is that understanding self is just a satisfying realization of "truth" for truth seekers, but the emotional benefits come from a kind of permanent mindfulness produced by a lot of meditation.

If that is right, it might have implications for how people primarily seeking to end dukkha should practice - focusing mostly on training to keep their default mode network inactive.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMep4wZyRr4

... You can't because in order to to exaggerate our feelings and emotions we have to sort of do this thing where we activate what's called the default mode network. We activate something called the PCC in our brain which is the posterior cingulate gyrus. When we do that, the room kind of disappears for a second and our thoughts become super big and strong. Whereas if we were holding the room as frame with our PCC very deactivated, our thoughts are these wispy little things in the room. I mean in comparison to like you know physical sensations or colors or whatever, you can barely even find them. Right?

And so this is basically that, just you know the vast majority of the time in other words. So whereas most people's default mode network is to have thoughts and feelings be the predominant experience and the room is there when they need to pay attention to it. You know, they can take a whole shower, or drive to work, and not even remember any of it. You don't even know if you washed something because you weren't there, you weren't present. Well if you train to really be present, you can flip over into this other way where it goes, wait a second when just everything is sort of evenly perceived and thoughts are just these wispy little things. Well then the amount of trouble that all that used to cause is vastly less. And so that's sort of one example that helps to explain what this experience is like.

 That's that's the default, right. So as most people's default is what's called the default mode network which is internal thoughts, worries, thoughts of past, and future ruminative thoughts. That's where their brain lives if you don't give them something else to do. Well, me given nothing else to do, the room predominates and thoughts are these wispy little things in it.

...

They can still convey their message right? And there might be a little feeling, and the're little sensations here, or whatever you know. But it's what percent of experience, like this much [gestures to show tiny amount] right? I mean, it's like, what percentage is this little thing happening here? These little sort of thoughts somewhere here? Like it's almost nothing. So they can convey their message but they don't become exaggerated. And because they don't become exaggerated, there's nothing like constantly re-triggering of all these, you know, adrenaline, and cortisol, and stress chemicals, and stuff, in the same way that used to happen before.

And that doesn't mean that I don't feel feelings, or that I have perfect intelligence, or clarity, or anything like that because I'm still a mammal. But it is much better. It's much better to not have that being caught and stuff be the default mode.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/24/20 4:53 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Understanding the illusory nature of the self and taking in the entire space are not different things. We are the entire space, sort of. This doesn't mean anything solipsistic, just that awareness is all of it, not this tiny individual mammalian mind with its ongoing stories. It's best understood by experiencing it, something that I would love to do as the default. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/24/20 11:40 AM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Hey, haven't had time to read every post on this thread, but one key point to remember:

That podcast was done to meet the needs of a very general, non-technical audience, and so used very simple terms, concepts, and really just focused on one small but real and hopefully relatable aspect of a much larger, vastly more complex topic, and then explained it an a relatively superficial way.

It was never designed to be anything other than that, and definitely shouldn't be taken to be more than what it is. It should not be taken too seriously, as the spirit of that podcast was light, non-technical, amusing, and playful.

If you want a deep-dive technical discussion of the topic, www.mctb.org hopefully does that.

Best wishes,

Daniel

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/24/20 1:21 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:
Hey, haven't had time to read every post on this thread, but one key point to remember:

That podcast was done to meet the needs of a very general, non-technical audience, and so used very simple terms, concepts, and really just focused on one small but real and hopefully relatable aspect of a much larger, vastly more complex topic, and then explained it an a relatively superficial way.

It was never designed to be anything other than that, and definitely shouldn't be taken to be more than what it is. It should not be taken too seriously, as the spirit of that podcast was light, non-technical, amusing, and playful.

If you want a deep-dive technical discussion of the topic, www.mctb.org hopefully does that.

Best wishes,

Daniel


Daniel,

I think what you say in that video is very significant and it has implcations for how people practice meditation and mindfuilness that in my opinion shoud be much better known than they seem to be.

After watching the video I tried to turn off my default mode network by practicing mindfulness of what I was seeing around me - I did this for several hours ( I have been practicing this way in walking meditation and daily life and I increased the amount of time I did this after I saw the video) - and I got the results you described in the video. And because my emotions were reduced to "wispy little things" ... 


https://www.dharmaoverground.org/discussion/-/message_boards/message/21743221#_19_message_21743221
As impersonal sensations, emotions no longer seem like they are "mine", or that they are telling a story about "me" they are more impersonal like seeing something outside my body is impersonal. So I don't feel egoistic reactions like offense, or outrage, or defensiveness, or agressiveness, when "unpleasant" things happen. It's like if a child tried to throw a snowball at me and missed. 

I think most people never notice this effect because it is hard to notice unless you have a strong emotion but when people feel a strong emotion, they don't try to remain mindful, they let the emotion take over. If people knew about the effect they would know to stay mindful and they would benefit from it and it would motivate them to practice. 

I don't know much about you or what you do so I don't know if this is useful or necessary for me to say ... but if you are not informing people about this and have the opportunity to do so I think it could provide a lot of benefit to people.

Letting go of attachments to self is hard. The pain of letting go is like the pain of loss. Anything that can help ease this pain can help people on the path. So I see this effect as having a similar role to jhanas or tranquility in helping people let go.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/24/20 4:06 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim, it's great that you experience that much less suffering. If you still think this is something other than seeing the illusory nature of mind, and that it's something similar to specific states, there may be even more to gain from this practice further down the road.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/24/20 6:10 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
Understanding the illusory nature of the self and taking in the entire space are not different things. We are the entire space, sort of. This doesn't mean anything solipsistic, just that awareness is all of it, not this tiny individual mammalian mind with its ongoing stories. It's best understood by experiencing it, something that I would love to do as the default. 

Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
Jim, it's great that you experience that much less suffering. If you still think this is something other than seeing the illusory nature of mind, and that it's something similar to specific states, there may be even more to gain from this practice further down the road.

If it is not a state, but is instead an understanding of the illusory nature of the mind, why is it not your default already? If it is understanding, why do you need to practice to make it your default once you have seen it for the first time?

Maybe you are seeing another illusion? And maybe it is really all the practice you do to make it the default that makes the state the default.

Maybe seeing the illusory nature of mind it is an epiphenomenon - it is produced by meditation but it has no actual influence or power, it is the meditation that changes how the brain works but it seems like "seeing" is what does it. 

If you look at studies of how the brain supports conciousness, there are plenty of examples of this. For example, people think they are making a decision when the brain has already made it several seconds previously. Despite what we think, "making a decision" is an epiphenomenon. 

https://www.nature.com/news/2008/080411/full/news.2008.751.html


Published online 11 April 2008 | Nature | doi:10.1038/news.2008.751

Brain makes decisions before you even know it
...
Your brain makes up its mind up to ten seconds before you realize it, according to researchers. By looking at brain activity while making a decision, the researchers could predict what choice people would make before they themselves were even aware of having made a decision.

The work calls into question the ‘consciousness’ of our decisions and may even challenge ideas about how ‘free’ we are to make a choice at a particular point in time.

“We think our decisions are conscious, but these data show that consciousness is just the tip of the iceberg,” says John-Dylan Haynes, a neuroscientist at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig, Germany, who led the study.

“The results are quite dramatic,” says Frank Tong, a neuroscientist at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. Ten seconds is "a lifetime” in terms of brain activity, he adds.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/24/20 6:24 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
For example, people think they are making a decision when the brain has already made it several seconds previously.

This is a simplified version of how the brain navigates through the process of making a decision. The reality is more complicated and less deterministic. Think of a batter during a baseball game - when is the decision to swing at a pitch really made, and how, if the decision to swing has been deterministically made several seconds earlier, can the batter reverse their decision and not swing, which they sometimes do? The picture of how the mind actually does what it does is still murky and not something we understand yet.


RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/24/20 7:51 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Arguing that the great insight is all about the illusory nature of the mind, undermines any further argument on any subject.

If the mind is producing illusions, then anything you believe could be an illusion.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/25/20 1:48 AM as a reply to Tom K.
Another question I have about the video is if it is so easy to turn emotions into "wispy little things" and it is recommended for people suffering dark nights, why isn't this part of the practice?

Why are people still suffering from dark nights and not knowing what to do about them when there is an effective treatment?

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/25/20 2:33 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

If it is not a state, but is instead an understanding of the illusory nature of the mind, why is it not your default already? If it is understanding, why do you need to practice to make it your default once you have seen it for the first time?

Because it’s not on an intellectual level. It’s an embodied taken-for-granted stance that involves the whole subconscious.


Maybe you are seeing another illusion?

Sure, that’s possible, but if so, it is one that involves much less effort and suffering and makes it easier for me to act from compassion.


And maybe it is really all the practice you do to make it the default that makes the state the default.

Well duh, why do you think I practice?


Maybe seeing the illusory nature of mind it is an epiphenomenon - it is produced by meditation but it has no actual influence or power, it is the meditation that changes how the brain works but it seems like "seeing" is what does it. 

Maybe cause and effect don’t even exist and maybe brains are epiphenomena. Who cares?


If you look at studies of how the brain supports conciousness, there are plenty of examples of this. For example, people think they are making a decision when the brain has already made it several seconds previously. Despite what we think, "making a decision" is an epiphenomenon. 

https://www.nature.com/news/2008/080411/full/news.2008.751.html


Published online 11 April 2008 | Nature | doi:10.1038/news.2008.751

Brain makes decisions before you even know it
...
Your brain makes up its mind up to ten seconds before you realize it, according to researchers. By looking at brain activity while making a decision, the researchers could predict what choice people would make before they themselves were even aware of having made a decision.

The work calls into question the ‘consciousness’ of our decisions and may even challenge ideas about how ‘free’ we are to make a choice at a particular point in time.

“We think our decisions are conscious, but these data show that consciousness is just the tip of the iceberg,” says John-Dylan Haynes, a neuroscientist at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig, Germany, who led the study.

“The results are quite dramatic,” says Frank Tong, a neuroscientist at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. Ten seconds is "a lifetime” in terms of brain activity, he adds.

Actually, the practice moves phenomena that used to be subconscious into the conscious, so I really don’t need science to tell me about the echoing going on. I learned that early on in my vipassana practice.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/25/20 2:36 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Another question I have about the video is if it is so easy to turn emotions into "wispy little things" and it is recommended for people suffering dark nights, why isn't this part of the practice?

Why are people still suffering from dark nights and not knowing what to do about them when there is an effective treatment?


Because for many people the effective treatment is hard to come by. Who said it was easy?

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/25/20 2:46 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Another question I have about the video is if it is so easy to turn emotions into "wispy little things" and it is recommended for people suffering dark nights, why isn't this part of the practice?

Why are people still suffering from dark nights and not knowing what to do about them when there is an effective treatment?

emoticon Because not all of us are the same. We do not have the same baggage mate emoticon 

I will try again, to share with you; I PRACTICED Shamatha (calm-abiding as in "the WHOLE body breathing" ) for 3 years when I hit Dark Night. 1st year and half was all great, Jhanas, tranquility, calm, only talking about Anapanasatti, Vimalaramsi, Brahm, Gunaranthana, etc ... how important it is to calm and relax emoticon I did not practice Noting as in Vipassana. At all. Still the Dark Night happened. 

Ive had a traumatic childhood. I was stuck in war for two years. I didn't know that I've suffered from PTSD until DN hit me uncovering what was under the surface. Then I asked for help but still got stuck and no amount of Shamatha could help me anymore. Got stuck and afraid of even going back to practicing for 7 years or so until I got to the point of realizing that no amount of ignoring this will help and all I could do is plow on through this Dukkha, somehow. 

However, plain Noting, or should I say noting aloud for 5 months of daily home practice did help get past it. These are facts. 

As you see, my journey went from Samatha to DN and then Noting helped in getting past the DN. 
These are facts. Relaxation can't help with DN. Sure one is to relax the body during the practice as body does have tendency to create tension in muscles when there is much effort there. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/25/20 7:10 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Arguing that the great insight is all about the illusory nature of the mind, undermines any further argument on any subject.

If the mind is producing illusions, then anything you believe could be an illusion.


About half the people suport Biden and think Trump is a criminal.

The other half support Trump and think Biden is a criminal.

People see what they want to see, what they expect to see.

Who can say what really is?

The good guys seem to win because the winners write the history books.

Who knows what really happened?

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/25/20 7:25 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Yes, you need to do whatever practice works for you. And you do seem to have a great practice going. So what's the problem? Just keep going. You are doing fine. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/25/20 8:54 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
If the mind is producing illusions, then anything you believe could be an illusion.

I have some news for you, Jim. The mind drives everything you experience. The question is... what parts of experience do you believe and what parts do you deny, and which parts can't you see at all? You've been living in an illusion for your entire life.


RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/25/20 9:27 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Jim Smith:
Arguing that the great insight is all about the illusory nature of the mind, undermines any further argument on any subject.

If the mind is producing illusions, then anything you believe could be an illusion.


About half the people suport Biden and think Trump is a criminal.

The other half support Trump and think Biden is a criminal.

People see what they want to see, what they expect to see.

Who can say what really is?

The good guys seem to win because the winners write the history books.

Who knows what really happened?

I will not claim that I know the "Truth". As far as I can see I'm just a cluster of experiences popping in and out of consciousness. 

Do I see that certain actions of mine cause suffering to myself and others? Yes I do. Do I see that certain actions of mine cause happiness to myself and others? Yes I do. 

Can I decide to do that which is not harmful for myself and others? Yes I can. 
Can I decide to harm myself and others? Yes I can. 
Is there volition in my actions? Yes there is. 

Do I see that there is Knowing of all This? Yes I do. Am I there when knowing is taking place? No. Am I there in the fast badminton actions (to use Chris's analogy) when playing it every Friday evening? No. 

So what is this sense of "I, me, mine"? Seems to be a fast knee-jerk habitual idea clinging onto what's already arisen on its own. 

Practice shows this first hand. That all experience observed has already arisen or is influenced by something that has already passed away. 

When one sees this enough times there is a development of dispassion to all this utter transience and there is more and more move into the "background" until there is no more background and "I" just fall away into the same knowing of the itch on the nose or bliss of the Jhana or a splinter under the nail or calm-abiding or annoyance with a person or Metta towards a person ... or ... (THIS) ...

... AND still there is knowing of all this and knowing of the knowing of knowing that's knowing of the knowing of the knowing of the kn... ... ... 

All THIS is just happening and referring back to no one. And still everything is still there; the volition of my actions, deciding what is of benefit and what not, annoyed by people, Metta to people, preferences, like and dislike ... ALL of it! Emptiness or Fullness, matters little. All is there. 

Practice shows this first hand emoticon there is some progressive development in this practice. 
It's not about practice making me a better person (even though it also does that in many aspects) but about seeing that "I am" nothing but a domino effect of dependent origination. And yet I'm still here and if I don't pay my taxes I will suffer the consequences emoticon The taxman will not buy into me saying that "I do not exist" emoticon 

Just my dummy dharma views here of course so take it with a grain of salt! 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 6:32 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
https://enlightenmentward.wordpress.com/2010/03/22/man-on-cloud-mountain-shodo-harada-roshi-segment-4-of-7-transcript/

Shodo Harada Roshi says enlightenment is living without the filter of the ego. He says it is not an abnormal state, but he refers to it as a state, so I suppose he means it is a natural state.
That small narrow way in which I had been looking at my enlightenment, my thing to have to do. I have to do this for myself. That is what had been bothering me all along from the very beginning. Through that day on the mountain when I realized that there was no self to be bothered with it. I had been crushing myself and making myself miserable worrying about this problem of my enlightenment and realizing it for myself making my self come to a conclusion that was, in fact, found in the living of every single day. If I did nothing, if I didn’t even worry about my problems things always came to me. And those things that came to me in every single day, to accept those was my training and my way of expressing my enlightened mind. No matter what it was that came to me every day, the next thing that came, the next situation I found myself in, to live that totally as my training was what I had to do. Not to go isolate myself up on a mountain closed off from everyone, turning them all away and worrying about my own small state of mind. That wasn’t the point at all. But to go and be what every day brought to me that was my practice and my expression of my enlightenment. And ever since I realized that my whole life has been completely different. I know there is no problem for myself because there is no one there to feel that there is a problem. Just to take what every day brings and do that with my best, total, whole hearted effort as a person of practice. That was the way to live.

II

Often enlightenment or kensho or satori is considered to be some kind of unusual experience or something external or some kind of special phenomenon. But it’s not like that. There may be some kind of sudden revelation or some kind of sudden perception, but its not something that is that unusual or that strange or foreign that we come upon or that comes upon us. What it is, is the ability to see without any interruption of the ego, without any filtering of the ego. And since we are all walking around seeing things through our ego filter almost all the time, to suddenly be able to see without that filter is a surprise. But it is nothing that we have ever not had.

They say that the mind of a baby is something that we can compare this to. A baby isn’t seeing things from an egoistic place. It is seeing directly and clear. It is the exact same kind of thing when we are seeing without the ego filter. We see that there is nothing to be analyzed in it. When you are seeing a flower you are not thinking that it is red or seeing a bird you are not thinking what its name is. You are just seeing directly. When we talk about enlightenment we are talking about that mind which is perceive at every moment without the obstruction of an egoistic filter. The experience of that mind and realizing where it is and realizing where it is coming from is what is called enlightenment or kensho or satori. It is not some kind of supernatural state of mind that we are able to enter or that comes upon us. It is not like some kind of altered state of consciousness to think that we are trying to do this practice for some kind of narrow experience for the individual. Thinking that we are going to come upon some big experience some day. This is a very low level understanding of what this enlightenment is.

It’s a return to our basic state of consciousness which we possess all the time but are always cluttering up with extraneous views and with the ego. The ego is consistently on top of us. It is always, always there. And if we can succeed in clearing it out what we can see without it is truly surprising. And that kind of surprise, that kind of wonder, that kind of enjoyment and joyfulness is obvious and it does truly happen. The difference for that ego is a big difference. but it’s not something we come to externally. It’s something we come to internally. We realize it by getting rid of things not by adding on an abnormal state. And once we realize this state once we recognize this we say, ah this is that mind that is without all those things. And then to live every moment without that egoistic filter on that inner eye, that is what has to be done, that is the real goal and that is the larger part of our training practice. Once we have recognized that new way of seeing, that new eye, an inner eye, once we have encountered that then we must nurture the ability to encounter every moment of our lives from that clear pure place. To live in that is the most important part of the practice. To be able to take that clear mind which is not covered by ego, to keep that going, to live in that place all the time that is what has to be done. Until we know what it is, we can’t keep it going. So that first understanding of where that clear place is, is often what people sometimes call enlightenment or kensho or satori. But to be able to come to every moment with that state of mind that is what’s most important.


From the Shinzen facebook group, Files: "Shinzen Enlightenment Interview.pdf" Shinzen says people can become awakened so gradually through meditation that they don't know they are awakened - they have no realization that tells them "before I wasn't awakend, now I know/experienced this and I am awakened.".  They don't need a new idea or new experience. To me this shows that it is meditation and not realization that causes awakening.
However, for most people who’ve studied with me it doesn’t happen that way. Not suddenly. What does happen is that the person gradually works through the things that get in the way of enlightenment, but so gradually that they might not notice.

You remember that I said in traditional Buddhism it’s very significant that it’s formulated that something passes away and it’s not something that you get? So what typically happens is that over a period of years, and indeed decades, within that person the craving, aversion and unconsciousness -­-the mula kleshas (the fundamental “impurities”), get worked through. Because it’s gradual, they may not realize how much they’ve changed. As the mula kleshas get worked through they suffer less and the fundamental alienation between inside and outside diminishes. But because all this is happening gradually they’re acclimatizing as it’s occurring.

In acclimatizing they may not realize how far they’ve come. However, they often do notice it when “the doo doo hits the fan”. Like a major bereavement, a major illness like cancer, a serious injury, or their life is somehow threatened. Then they notice how everyone around them is freaking out and how much less they’re freaking out. Then the contrast becomes suddenly very evident. That’s when they would tend to notice it. That’s why I like telling the story about the samurai.


“This samurai went to the Zen temple on the mountain and lived there for many years. He didn’t seem to be getting anything out of the practice. So he said to the Master, ‘I think I need to leave. Nothing’s happening as a result of this practice’. So the master said ‘Okay. Go.’

As he was coming down the hill one of his former comrades, a fellow samurai, saw him in the tattered robes of a Buddhist monk –which is equivalent to a glorified beggar from a samurai’s point of view –and he said ‘how could you be so undignified to join the counter-­-culture of Buddhist beggars?’ and he spit on him. Now in the old days the samurais were extremely proud. Any insult to their personal dignity meant a fight to the death. So the monk who had formerly been a samurai just walked on and after he’d walked a certain distance, it occurred to him that not only did he not need to kill this guy, he wasn’t even angry.

As the story goes he turned around and bowed towards the mountain three times where he had practiced. He bowed in his recognition of all that he had worked through. He recognized he no longer needed to kill someone that had offended his dignity. He noticed how fundamentally he had changed as a human being.”


Of course, it’s not just samurai in 16th century Japan. The same things apply to 21st century North Americans. Maybe they’ve been practicing for 10, 20, or 30 years and it doesn’t seem that much has changed. And then something big happens and then they realize how different they’ve become compared to ordinary people. I’ll give you an example that happened just a few weeks ago. Someone who has been coming to retreats for quite a while went to have a biopsy to determine whether they had a serious cancer or not. While waiting for the results this person noticed they weren’t worried. Anyway, it turned out that the biopsy was negative. So all the unnecessary suffering that would’ve happened but didn’t, that was the effect of that person’s years and years of practice. It’s my impression that many more people have that gradual unfolding than have the sudden...

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:49 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
That strong attachment to specific wordings migh be worth looking into. They seem to cause you unnecessary suffering. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 11:13 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

From the Shinzen facebook group, Files: "Shinzen Enlightenment Interview.pdf" Shinzen says people can become awakened so gradually through meditation that they don't know they are awakened - they have no realization that tells them "before I wasn't awakend, now I know/experienced this and I am awakened.".  They don't need a new idea or new experience. To me this shows that it is meditation and not realization that causes awakening.
People can be so unawakened that they thing they are awakened - more likely scenario emoticon

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 2:49 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
"What it is, is the ability to see without any interruption of the ego, without any filtering of the ego"

I would say its more like each moment, even the one that has ego story unfolding, or if you wish "ego filtering", is mirroring itself and hence awake in and of it itself. Human Awakening that does not include this so called ego filtering is incomplete (or such awakening is stuck in another realm but the human realm).

P.s. please excuse this dhamma fool for wasting prescious web space emoticon emoticon 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 2:50 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
Jim Smith:

From the Shinzen facebook group, Files: "Shinzen Enlightenment Interview.pdf" Shinzen says people can become awakened so gradually through meditation that they don't know they are awakened - they have no realization that tells them "before I wasn't awakend, now I know/experienced this and I am awakened.".  They don't need a new idea or new experience. To me this shows that it is meditation and not realization that causes awakening.
People can be so unawakened that they thing they are awakened - more likely scenario emoticon
I am awakened emoticon 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 3:34 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
Jim Smith:

From the Shinzen facebook group, Files: "Shinzen Enlightenment Interview.pdf" Shinzen says people can become awakened so gradually through meditation that they don't know they are awakened - they have no realization that tells them "before I wasn't awakend, now I know/experienced this and I am awakened.".  They don't need a new idea or new experience. To me this shows that it is meditation and not realization that causes awakening.
People can be so unawakened that they thing they are awakened - more likely scenario emoticon
Yup, it sure seems to be much more common. I really don't think we have a huge number or fully enlightened people walking around unknowingly. It would be a lovely scenario though, people being much wiser than they bother to acknowledge. Oh my goodness, I would love that. 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 4:04 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

It produces a feeling of a lack of separation.


feels like there should be a cartoon associated with this line...

(I'm thinking of a fisherman bottom dragging up an oozy item of fauna never before seen by humankind...)

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 4:23 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Jim Smith:


https://www.lionsroar.com/on-enlightenment-an-interview-with-shinzen-young/

...
On Enlightenment – An Interview with Shinzen Young
BY ANDREA MILLER| SEPTEMBER 10, 2009
...

The only difference between an enlightened person and a non-enlightened person is that when the feel-image-talk self doesn’t arise during the day, the enlightened person notices that and knows that to be a clear experience of no-self. The non-enlightened person actually has that experience hundreds of times a day, when they’re briefly pulled to a physical-type touch or an external sight or sound. For just a moment there is just the world of touch-sight-sound. For just a moment there is no self inside that person but they don’t notice it! But just because they don’t notice it doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened.

An enlightened person sees everyone as constantly experiencing brief moments of enlightenment during the day. So paradoxically being an enlightened person doesn’t make you that special. Now you can say, “Well, but they don’t realize it,” that’s one way to look at it, but it’s also undeniable that they are. From that perspective it’s very misleading to separate enlightened people from non-enlightened people.


I found it very instructive to go for a walk and try to notice those no-self moments. I highly recommend it.  No-self moments are when something you see or hear catches your attention and you are aware of it without thinking about anything else. It will help if your mind is already quiet from practicing meditation or mindfulness so that you can pay attention and not be distracted by mental chatter.

   It seems to me, bra, as gently as I can say it, that the person seeing and recommending "no self moments" is participating in those moments and thus they are self moments, to be preferred as the self desires. If your mind is truly quiet no preferences arise.

   All of our moments are no self moments, but if you notice this you place a barrier between yourself and your perceptions, call it ego. Here's me noticing, I'm practicing now, good for me. If this is done in order to get past it, fine. If we dwell in noticing no self moments (as a practice), it is the dwelling in noticing that is significant, not the no self, which is there anytime we deign to notice it.

   Making distinctions mind is not no self mind, though neither are they two.


terry



"From 'thus have I heard' to 'this I believe'
All's just an array of unreal names."

~layman p'ang 

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 4:35 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
shargrol:
Jim Smith:

To be lucid with respect to your own mind means to be aware of the activity in your mind as if you were an observer, not a participant like when you are watching a movie and become so drawn in to it that you forget where you are and react as if the movie was real. To be lucid with respect to the activity of your mind, is to observe your thoughts emotions and impulses but not to get drawn into them so that they take over your mind and you forget you are observing them and start reacting to them.

By staying lucid, by remaining an observer, you stay out of the default network where emotions can be so much more troublesome.

Well, that's only the first step. The next step (and the step that enlightenment is all about) is figuring out what it means to observe. What observes that it is observing? How do you know? emoticon

1) Observer is just a word used to communicate an action. 2) When you are fully involved in observing, there is no observer.

https://www.lionsroar.com/on-enlightenment-an-interview-with-shinzen-young/
1)

On Enlightenment – An Interview with Shinzen Young
BY ANDREA MILLER| SEPTEMBER 10, 2009
...
Buddhists formulate the “shift in perception of I-am-ness” as “there truly is no self.” The Buddhists say enlightenment is to realize there is no Atma, which is interpreted as self-as-thing. Within a lot of Hinduism the very same experience is described as discovering the True Self in a way that implies it’s a thing—the Witness, the True Observer, Pure Consciousness, etc. Most Hindu teachers say enlightenment is to find the Atma, which is interpreted as the True Perceiver, or the Nature of consciousness that’s in some way behind all the appearances. You might think they’re talking about completely different experiences but as far as I can see they’re using different descriptions in talking about the same thing.

When you interact and talk with the Hindu babas and the Buddhist masters you get the same body language and vibe. It seems the same re-engineering of the human has taken place in both cases, but the language they use to describe this sounds antithetical.
...

2)
The only difference between an enlightened person and a non-enlightened person is that when the feel-image-talk self doesn’t arise during the day, the enlightened person notices that and knows that to be a clear experience of no-self. The non-enlightened person actually has that experience hundreds of times a day, when they’re briefly pulled to a physical-type touch or an external sight or sound. For just a moment there is just the world of touch-sight-sound. For just a moment there is no self inside that person but they don’t notice it! But just because they don’t notice it doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened.

An enlightened person sees everyone as constantly experiencing brief moments of enlightenment during the day. So paradoxically being an enlightened person doesn’t make you that special. Now you can say, “Well, but they don’t realize it,” that’s one way to look at it, but it’s also undeniable that they are. From that perspective it’s very misleading to separate enlightened people from non-enlightened people.


   Thre truly is no perception of "I am-ness." It is purely a concept. Eliminate concepts and you eliminate the illusion of perception of self immediately. The delusion of being a self takes a little longer. We are used to comparing our sensations with "others" for validation, and that is disastrous for maintaining a realization of non-self, "others" being what they are.

   I recommend solitude. And solitary meditation. And a gradual emergence of the perception that we are one solitary.

t

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 4:46 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
Honestly, I think anyone who needs criteria to establish that they are awakened, are not done yet. I wouldn't know, though, because I'm not done. At the same time, I think it's probably not a bad idea at all to use criteria for practice ideas. That's skillful usage of the criteria. Again, since I'm not done, I don't actually know that either, so take it with a pinch of salt. 


  Love, love love. It's all so easy. No criteria, no doubts. You're in love or you long to be. You won't find it in books, words, letters. Life is love.

terry




from "crazy clouds; zen radicals, rebels and reformers" eds perle, steger:



When the mind's as it is, circumstances also are as is.
There's no real and no unreal.
Givng no heed to existence
And holding not to nonexistence,
You're neither saint nor sage, just
An ordinary man who has settled his affairs.
Easy, so easy....

~layman p'ang

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 4:51 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
Job of Bodhisattva is to liberate others, not oneself. Whatever that means.
Cuz, you know, U ain't sheet in any world until you get a job. That is the meaning of 5th path.
I know how to extrapolate and this is my best power so far =P


   Bodhisattvas want to liberate thrmselves, of course they do: they just vow to liberate all sentient beings first before attending to their own enlightenment. But they'll get around to it eventually.

t

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:01 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
Papa Che Dusko:

Dark Night Nana

It is either "Dark Night" or "dukkha nana"

Besides using "dark night" in this context is an absuse ot the term. Originally (by St. John of the Cross) it was supposed to mean whole period between loosing naive faith in God and gaining true faith in God, no matter if you yourself feel bad or good.

In this meaning anyone who does not find God directly is in in the "dark night of soul".

   John's monks were ripped one day from ordinary daily life and then next day put in a cell under severe monastic discipline. Hair shirts, bad food and no social interaction to speak of. Cold, hungry, damp, friendless, no prospects that life will ever improve. Have a problem with that? Pray to god.

   Dark nights were the expected result. A universal rite of passage. All were marked by it. It explains a lot.

   Comparing our experiences to those reminds me of white people playing the blues. Or, worse, "blue eyed soul."


terry

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:07 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
How do you define mind? Chris? Ni Nurta? It seems to be one of those words that people use very differently. I thought that what Ni Nurta was referring to might be what many others refer to as the doer, whereas he uses the word doer about the same way as Chris uses the word self in arguing that the notion of no self is wrong. From other things that Ni Nurta has written, it is clear to me that he is not suggesting unconsciousness or being a zombie or a robot or renouncing worldly concerns. 

mind...


we think of mind as command and control, but actually it is host and guest...individual mind and hive mind are one mind...


t



"it's all in the mind, you know..."

~the beatles

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:09 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
Existence of observer isn't even an issue. The issue is that it should be momentary on-demand thing but it is persistent and obstruct perceptions. We experience mostly this perspective of observer that lack many qualities which could otherwise be present and would make overall perception much better, nicer.

Mind is normally not flexible enough to quickly switch perspectives and clings to perspectives because it is afraid of different perspectives so it is hard to experience something for one moment and then something else next moment. With practice that changes, there is now flexibility and there is enough experience with different perspectives that mind is comfortable using them. Though what can happen and what happens is that mind switch what it is comfortable with and people replace apples with oranges and call it enlightenment. Been there, done that and this is not the way, even if it matches descriptions of non-duality.

The default should be complete cessation of mind and all perspectives should be momentary and on-demand with this does/observer perspectives available just like any other perspective is. It should merely feel like these perspectives are not happening on its own all the damn time instead of they were removed because nothing should be blocked/removed.

IMHO

mind is not something to manipulate, it is who we are...

mind is wonderful

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:13 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
How do you define mind? Chris? Ni Nurta? 

I'm sorry I posted the caveat. I'd prefer to focus on our agreement, not on this one difference. Your question deserves an appropriate, nuanced answer, but that's something I don't have time to supply right now.

tease...

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:21 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Papa Che Dusko:
I thought that the true nature of mind can not be seen. "Not even Buddha can see it and yet both Samsara and Nirvana arise from it". Isn't this from the teaching on Mahamudra? 

If it can't be seen then it is waste of energy trying to see it no? Kenneth mention that Very Act of "Looking Towards (that which can't be seen)" is as far as it goes in knowing the true nature of mind. 
So what is in that Very Act of looking? Wonder. Simple unefforted wonderius looking.

Basically we can be awake to Samsara and Nirvana, but the true nature of Mind remains to be the mystical number 42 emoticon (always know where your towel is and Don't Panic) emoticon 


P.s. I hope you don't mind my rumbling. I'm having me first morning coffee and am laughing emoticon It's good to laugh a little. Thank you for such topics! 


   One's true nature can neither be seen nor defiled. We can be what we are. Or we can deny our true nature and struggle in futile impotence.

   It is not our true nature to poison ourselves with meat, alcohol, tobacco, sexual indulgence, or netflix. Hence the 8fold path.

terry

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:24 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
One can find quotes to support basically anything if taken out of context and projecting other connotations to words. 


guilty!

lol

(it's an art)

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:27 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
Papa Che Dusko:
I thought that the true nature of mind can not be seen. "Not even Buddha can see it and yet both Samsara and Nirvana arise from it". Isn't this from the teaching on Mahamudra?
It is the arts that give existence its meaing.


meaningless as an answer but most wonderful as a statement....

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:28 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
Understanding the illusory nature of the self and taking in the entire space are not different things. We are the entire space, sort of. This doesn't mean anything solipsistic, just that awareness is all of it, not this tiny individual mammalian mind with its ongoing stories. It's best understood by experiencing it, something that I would love to do as the default. 


right on, sistah...

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:42 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
One question I have about the video interview with Daniel in the opening post, is that when he explains what enlightenment is like, he says his emotions are reduced to "wispy little things" because keeping his mind focused on the outside deactivates the default mode network.

However I thougth the emotional changes that accompany enlightenment ("end" of suffering/dukkha) are due to having a correct understanding of the illusory nature of self and it is that understanding that produces a permanent change.

It seems to me that implicit in Daniel not mentioning it, is that understanding self is just a satisfying realization of "truth" for truth seekers, but the emotional benefits come from a kind of permanent mindfulness produced by a lot of meditation.

If that is right, it might have implications for how people primarily seeking to end dukkha should practice - focusing mostly on training to keep their default mode network inactive.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMep4wZyRr4

... You can't because in order to to exaggerate our feelings and emotions we have to sort of do this thing where we activate what's called the default mode network. We activate something called the PCC in our brain which is the posterior cingulate gyrus. When we do that, the room kind of disappears for a second and our thoughts become super big and strong. Whereas if we were holding the room as frame with our PCC very deactivated, our thoughts are these wispy little things in the room. I mean in comparison to like you know physical sensations or colors or whatever, you can barely even find them. Right?

And so this is basically that, just you know the vast majority of the time in other words. So whereas most people's default mode network is to have thoughts and feelings be the predominant experience and the room is there when they need to pay attention to it. You know, they can take a whole shower, or drive to work, and not even remember any of it. You don't even know if you washed something because you weren't there, you weren't present. Well if you train to really be present, you can flip over into this other way where it goes, wait a second when just everything is sort of evenly perceived and thoughts are just these wispy little things. Well then the amount of trouble that all that used to cause is vastly less. And so that's sort of one example that helps to explain what this experience is like.

 That's that's the default, right. So as most people's default is what's called the default mode network which is internal thoughts, worries, thoughts of past, and future ruminative thoughts. That's where their brain lives if you don't give them something else to do. Well, me given nothing else to do, the room predominates and thoughts are these wispy little things in it.

...

They can still convey their message right? And there might be a little feeling, and the're little sensations here, or whatever you know. But it's what percent of experience, like this much [gestures to show tiny amount] right? I mean, it's like, what percentage is this little thing happening here? These little sort of thoughts somewhere here? Like it's almost nothing. So they can convey their message but they don't become exaggerated. And because they don't become exaggerated, there's nothing like constantly re-triggering of all these, you know, adrenaline, and cortisol, and stress chemicals, and stuff, in the same way that used to happen before.

And that doesn't mean that I don't feel feelings, or that I have perfect intelligence, or clarity, or anything like that because I'm still a mammal. But it is much better. It's much better to not have that being caught and stuff be the default mode.

   I posted lyrics from a  "rage against the machine" song and a link. If you followed the link and listened to the song, the video on youtube just shows the famous still of zen buddhist monk thich quang duc immolating himself in protest. He doused himself with gasoline, lit a match, and burned todeath without a cry or a movement, sitting in (apparently) peaceful meditation.

   I wonder what his emotions were? I wondered for a long time, I put myself in his place and tried to imagine the RAGE! he felt against american foreign policy, on 11 june 1963. 100,000s dead unnecessarily. Sound familiar? What do we need to Wake Up?


terry


   The immolation was videotaped, you can see it here:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/videos/news/burning-monk-vietnamese-monk-who-immolated-himself-against-ngo-dinh-diem/videoshow/69729654.cms#:~:text=Thich%20Quang%20Duc%20was%20a,defiance%20against%20a%20corrupt%20government.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:45 PM as a reply to terry.
terry:

mind is not something to manipulate, it is who we are...

mind is wonderful
Say hello to tensions in your body that you identify with emoticon

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:46 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Arguing that the great insight is all about the illusory nature of the mind, undermines any further argument on any subject.

If the mind is producing illusions, then anything you believe could be an illusion.


the fact that everything you believe is an illusion does not mean that the nature of the mind is illusory...

t

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:50 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
Jim Smith:
Another question I have about the video is if it is so easy to turn emotions into "wispy little things" and it is recommended for people suffering dark nights, why isn't this part of the practice?

Why are people still suffering from dark nights and not knowing what to do about them when there is an effective treatment?


Because for many people the effective treatment is hard to come by. Who said it was easy?

you rang?

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:53 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Jim Smith:
Arguing that the great insight is all about the illusory nature of the mind, undermines any further argument on any subject.

If the mind is producing illusions, then anything you believe could be an illusion.


About half the people suport Biden and think Trump is a criminal.

The other half support Trump and think Biden is a criminal.

People see what they want to see, what they expect to see.

Who can say what really is?

The good guys seem to win because the winners write the history books.

Who knows what really happened?


more like 60 40, jones, and headed towards 65 35...

trump is a sociopatch well on his way to being a psychopath...

the roman emperors wrote the history books and they were still scumbags...

anyone who can't speak to what really is is a hypocrite...


t

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:55 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Papa Che Dusko:
Ni Nurta:
Jim Smith:

From the Shinzen facebook group, Files: "Shinzen Enlightenment Interview.pdf" Shinzen says people can become awakened so gradually through meditation that they don't know they are awakened - they have no realization that tells them "before I wasn't awakend, now I know/experienced this and I am awakened.".  They don't need a new idea or new experience. To me this shows that it is meditation and not realization that causes awakening.
People can be so unawakened that they thing they are awakened - more likely scenario emoticon
I am awakened emoticon 



go back to sleep baby, it's just a nightmare...

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 5:57 PM as a reply to terry.
terry:
Papa Che Dusko:
Ni Nurta:
Jim Smith:

From the Shinzen facebook group, Files: "Shinzen Enlightenment Interview.pdf" Shinzen says people can become awakened so gradually through meditation that they don't know they are awakened - they have no realization that tells them "before I wasn't awakend, now I know/experienced this and I am awakened.".  They don't need a new idea or new experience. To me this shows that it is meditation and not realization that causes awakening.
People can be so unawakened that they thing they are awakened - more likely scenario emoticon
I am awakened emoticon 



go back to sleep baby, it's just a nightmare...


(I wonder what monsters have nightmares about?)

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 6:04 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Papa Che Dusko:
Jim Smith:
Jim Smith:
Arguing that the great insight is all about the illusory nature of the mind, undermines any further argument on any subject.

If the mind is producing illusions, then anything you believe could be an illusion.


About half the people suport Biden and think Trump is a criminal.

The other half support Trump and think Biden is a criminal.

People see what they want to see, what they expect to see.

Who can say what really is?

The good guys seem to win because the winners write the history books.

Who knows what really happened?

I will not claim that I know the "Truth". As far as I can see I'm just a cluster of experiences popping in and out of consciousness. 

Do I see that certain actions of mine cause suffering to myself and others? Yes I do. Do I see that certain actions of mine cause happiness to myself and others? Yes I do. 

Can I decide to do that which is not harmful for myself and others? Yes I can. 
Can I decide to harm myself and others? Yes I can. 
Is there volition in my actions? Yes there is. 

Do I see that there is Knowing of all This? Yes I do. Am I there when knowing is taking place? No. Am I there in the fast badminton actions (to use Chris's analogy) when playing it every Friday evening? No. 

So what is this sense of "I, me, mine"? Seems to be a fast knee-jerk habitual idea clinging onto what's already arisen on its own. 

Practice shows this first hand. That all experience observed has already arisen or is influenced by something that has already passed away. 

When one sees this enough times there is a development of dispassion to all this utter transience and there is more and more move into the "background" until there is no more background and "I" just fall away into the same knowing of the itch on the nose or bliss of the Jhana or a splinter under the nail or calm-abiding or annoyance with a person or Metta towards a person ... or ... (THIS) ...

... AND still there is knowing of all this and knowing of the knowing of knowing that's knowing of the knowing of the knowing of the kn... ... ... 

All THIS is just happening and referring back to no one. And still everything is still there; the volition of my actions, deciding what is of benefit and what not, annoyed by people, Metta to people, preferences, like and dislike ... ALL of it! Emptiness or Fullness, matters little. All is there. 

Practice shows this first hand emoticon there is some progressive development in this practice. 
It's not about practice making me a better person (even though it also does that in many aspects) but about seeing that "I am" nothing but a domino effect of dependent origination. And yet I'm still here and if I don't pay my taxes I will suffer the consequences emoticon The taxman will not buy into me saying that "I do not exist" emoticon 

Just my dummy dharma views here of course so take it with a grain of salt! 


   A grain of salt is a plain, perfect, cubic crystal, as are your words.

(bows to you)

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 6:08 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
https://enlightenmentward.wordpress.com/2010/03/22/man-on-cloud-mountain-shodo-harada-roshi-segment-4-of-7-transcript/

Shodo Harada Roshi says enlightenment is living without the filter of the ego. He says it is not an abnormal state, but he refers to it as a state, so I suppose he means it is a natural state.
That small narrow way in which I had been looking at my enlightenment, my thing to have to do. I have to do this for myself. That is what had been bothering me all along from the very beginning. Through that day on the mountain when I realized that there was no self to be bothered with it. I had been crushing myself and making myself miserable worrying about this problem of my enlightenment and realizing it for myself making my self come to a conclusion that was, in fact, found in the living of every single day. If I did nothing, if I didn’t even worry about my problems things always came to me. And those things that came to me in every single day, to accept those was my training and my way of expressing my enlightened mind. No matter what it was that came to me every day, the next thing that came, the next situation I found myself in, to live that totally as my training was what I had to do. Not to go isolate myself up on a mountain closed off from everyone, turning them all away and worrying about my own small state of mind. That wasn’t the point at all. But to go and be what every day brought to me that was my practice and my expression of my enlightenment. And ever since I realized that my whole life has been completely different. I know there is no problem for myself because there is no one there to feel that there is a problem. Just to take what every day brings and do that with my best, total, whole hearted effort as a person of practice. That was the way to live.

II

Often enlightenment or kensho or satori is considered to be some kind of unusual experience or something external or some kind of special phenomenon. But it’s not like that. There may be some kind of sudden revelation or some kind of sudden perception, but its not something that is that unusual or that strange or foreign that we come upon or that comes upon us. What it is, is the ability to see without any interruption of the ego, without any filtering of the ego. And since we are all walking around seeing things through our ego filter almost all the time, to suddenly be able to see without that filter is a surprise. But it is nothing that we have ever not had.

They say that the mind of a baby is something that we can compare this to. A baby isn’t seeing things from an egoistic place. It is seeing directly and clear. It is the exact same kind of thing when we are seeing without the ego filter. We see that there is nothing to be analyzed in it. When you are seeing a flower you are not thinking that it is red or seeing a bird you are not thinking what its name is. You are just seeing directly. When we talk about enlightenment we are talking about that mind which is perceive at every moment without the obstruction of an egoistic filter. The experience of that mind and realizing where it is and realizing where it is coming from is what is called enlightenment or kensho or satori. It is not some kind of supernatural state of mind that we are able to enter or that comes upon us. It is not like some kind of altered state of consciousness to think that we are trying to do this practice for some kind of narrow experience for the individual. Thinking that we are going to come upon some big experience some day. This is a very low level understanding of what this enlightenment is.

It’s a return to our basic state of consciousness which we possess all the time but are always cluttering up with extraneous views and with the ego. The ego is consistently on top of us. It is always, always there. And if we can succeed in clearing it out what we can see without it is truly surprising. And that kind of surprise, that kind of wonder, that kind of enjoyment and joyfulness is obvious and it does truly happen. The difference for that ego is a big difference. but it’s not something we come to externally. It’s something we come to internally. We realize it by getting rid of things not by adding on an abnormal state. And once we realize this state once we recognize this we say, ah this is that mind that is without all those things. And then to live every moment without that egoistic filter on that inner eye, that is what has to be done, that is the real goal and that is the larger part of our training practice. Once we have recognized that new way of seeing, that new eye, an inner eye, once we have encountered that then we must nurture the ability to encounter every moment of our lives from that clear pure place. To live in that is the most important part of the practice. To be able to take that clear mind which is not covered by ego, to keep that going, to live in that place all the time that is what has to be done. Until we know what it is, we can’t keep it going. So that first understanding of where that clear place is, is often what people sometimes call enlightenment or kensho or satori. But to be able to come to every moment with that state of mind that is what’s most important.


From the Shinzen facebook group, Files: "Shinzen Enlightenment Interview.pdf" Shinzen says people can become awakened so gradually through meditation that they don't know they are awakened - they have no realization that tells them "before I wasn't awakend, now I know/experienced this and I am awakened.".  They don't need a new idea or new experience. To me this shows that it is meditation and not realization that causes awakening.
However, for most people who’ve studied with me it doesn’t happen that way. Not suddenly. What does happen is that the person gradually works through the things that get in the way of enlightenment, but so gradually that they might not notice.

You remember that I said in traditional Buddhism it’s very significant that it’s formulated that something passes away and it’s not something that you get? So what typically happens is that over a period of years, and indeed decades, within that person the craving, aversion and unconsciousness -­-the mula kleshas (the fundamental “impurities”), get worked through. Because it’s gradual, they may not realize how much they’ve changed. As the mula kleshas get worked through they suffer less and the fundamental alienation between inside and outside diminishes. But because all this is happening gradually they’re acclimatizing as it’s occurring.

In acclimatizing they may not realize how far they’ve come. However, they often do notice it when “the doo doo hits the fan”. Like a major bereavement, a major illness like cancer, a serious injury, or their life is somehow threatened. Then they notice how everyone around them is freaking out and how much less they’re freaking out. Then the contrast becomes suddenly very evident. That’s when they would tend to notice it. That’s why I like telling the story about the samurai.


“This samurai went to the Zen temple on the mountain and lived there for many years. He didn’t seem to be getting anything out of the practice. So he said to the Master, ‘I think I need to leave. Nothing’s happening as a result of this practice’. So the master said ‘Okay. Go.’

As he was coming down the hill one of his former comrades, a fellow samurai, saw him in the tattered robes of a Buddhist monk –which is equivalent to a glorified beggar from a samurai’s point of view –and he said ‘how could you be so undignified to join the counter-­-culture of Buddhist beggars?’ and he spit on him. Now in the old days the samurais were extremely proud. Any insult to their personal dignity meant a fight to the death. So the monk who had formerly been a samurai just walked on and after he’d walked a certain distance, it occurred to him that not only did he not need to kill this guy, he wasn’t even angry.

As the story goes he turned around and bowed towards the mountain three times where he had practiced. He bowed in his recognition of all that he had worked through. He recognized he no longer needed to kill someone that had offended his dignity. He noticed how fundamentally he had changed as a human being.”


Of course, it’s not just samurai in 16th century Japan. The same things apply to 21st century North Americans. Maybe they’ve been practicing for 10, 20, or 30 years and it doesn’t seem that much has changed. And then something big happens and then they realize how different they’ve become compared to ordinary people. I’ll give you an example that happened just a few weeks ago. Someone who has been coming to retreats for quite a while went to have a biopsy to determine whether they had a serious cancer or not. While waiting for the results this person noticed they weren’t worried. Anyway, it turned out that the biopsy was negative. So all the unnecessary suffering that would’ve happened but didn’t, that was the effect of that person’s years and years of practice. It’s my impression that many more people have that gradual unfolding than have the sudden...


just cuz shizen young says somethijg doesn't make it true...

people should be warned about taking statements from supposed enlightened people as authoritative...

t

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 6:09 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
Ni Nurta:
Jim Smith:

From the Shinzen facebook group, Files: "Shinzen Enlightenment Interview.pdf" Shinzen says people can become awakened so gradually through meditation that they don't know they are awakened - they have no realization that tells them "before I wasn't awakend, now I know/experienced this and I am awakened.".  They don't need a new idea or new experience. To me this shows that it is meditation and not realization that causes awakening.
People can be so unawakened that they thing they are awakened - more likely scenario emoticon
Yup, it sure seems to be much more common. I really don't think we have a huge number or fully enlightened people walking around unknowingly. It would be a lovely scenario though, people being much wiser than they bother to acknowledge. Oh my goodness, I would love that. 

   Quite a few such in rural hawaii, and I would not doubt in other rural areas as well.

   I love it.

t

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 6:14 PM as a reply to terry.
terry:
Jim Smith:
shargrol:
Jim Smith:

To be lucid with respect to your own mind means to be aware of the activity in your mind as if you were an observer, not a participant like when you are watching a movie and become so drawn in to it that you forget where you are and react as if the movie was real. To be lucid with respect to the activity of your mind, is to observe your thoughts emotions and impulses but not to get drawn into them so that they take over your mind and you forget you are observing them and start reacting to them.

By staying lucid, by remaining an observer, you stay out of the default network where emotions can be so much more troublesome.

Well, that's only the first step. The next step (and the step that enlightenment is all about) is figuring out what it means to observe. What observes that it is observing? How do you know? emoticon

1) Observer is just a word used to communicate an action. 2) When you are fully involved in observing, there is no observer.

https://www.lionsroar.com/on-enlightenment-an-interview-with-shinzen-young/
1)

On Enlightenment – An Interview with Shinzen Young
BY ANDREA MILLER| SEPTEMBER 10, 2009
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Buddhists formulate the “shift in perception of I-am-ness” as “there truly is no self.” The Buddhists say enlightenment is to realize there is no Atma, which is interpreted as self-as-thing. Within a lot of Hinduism the very same experience is described as discovering the True Self in a way that implies it’s a thing—the Witness, the True Observer, Pure Consciousness, etc. Most Hindu teachers say enlightenment is to find the Atma, which is interpreted as the True Perceiver, or the Nature of consciousness that’s in some way behind all the appearances. You might think they’re talking about completely different experiences but as far as I can see they’re using different descriptions in talking about the same thing.

When you interact and talk with the Hindu babas and the Buddhist masters you get the same body language and vibe. It seems the same re-engineering of the human has taken place in both cases, but the language they use to describe this sounds antithetical.
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The only difference between an enlightened person and a non-enlightened person is that when the feel-image-talk self doesn’t arise during the day, the enlightened person notices that and knows that to be a clear experience of no-self. The non-enlightened person actually has that experience hundreds of times a day, when they’re briefly pulled to a physical-type touch or an external sight or sound. For just a moment there is just the world of touch-sight-sound. For just a moment there is no self inside that person but they don’t notice it! But just because they don’t notice it doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened.

An enlightened person sees everyone as constantly experiencing brief moments of enlightenment during the day. So paradoxically being an enlightened person doesn’t make you that special. Now you can say, “Well, but they don’t realize it,” that’s one way to look at it, but it’s also undeniable that they are. From that perspective it’s very misleading to separate enlightened people from non-enlightened people.


   Thre truly is no perception of "I am-ness." It is purely a concept. Eliminate concepts and you eliminate the illusion of perception of self immediately. The delusion of being a self takes a little longer. We are used to comparing our sensations with "others" for validation, and that is disastrous for maintaining a realization of non-self, "others" being what they are.

   I recommend solitude. And solitary meditation. And a gradual emergence of the perception that we are one solitary.

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from the gospel according to thomas:


49.  Jesus said, “Blessed are the solitary and elect, for you will find the kingdom. For you are from it, and to it you will return”.

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 6:22 PM as a reply to Papa Che Dusko.
Papa Che Dusko:

I am awakened emoticon 
Then let me awaken you even more. To a kind of very deep existential truth: 42 is not a prime emoticon

ps. My favorite number is 43 emoticon

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 6:23 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
terry:

mind is not something to manipulate, it is who we are...

mind is wonderful
Say hello to tensions in your body that you identify with emoticon

I don't identify with tensions in "my" body...

I avoid identification like the plague

(though I rarely wear a mask)

RE: Daniel Describes What it's like to be Enlightened
Answer
10/26/20 6:34 PM as a reply to Ni Nurta.
Ni Nurta:
Papa Che Dusko:

I am awakened emoticon 
[font="comic sans ms", cursive]Then let me awaken you even more. To a kind of very deep existential truth: 42 is not a prime emoticon

ps. My favorite number is 43 emoticon

I alternate between zero and one...


lol