Wanted to check some things out

Leigh Smith, modified 10 Years ago at 10/10/11 2:31 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 10/10/11 2:31 PM

Wanted to check some things out

Posts: 4 Join Date: 6/10/11 Recent Posts
Hello everyone,

I just wanted to run a meditation I had yesterday by some people and ask if they think my diagnosis is correct. sorry if it isn't very clear.

I started out following the breath, not specifically noting the breath, if I already have enough mindfulness I tend to just stay with the bodily sensations and not note rising and falling. I was focussing on the sensations and their impermanence. I became quite concentrated doing that and could stay with the sensations well.

Then I started to get lots of tension in my forehead, so I investigated it, noted tension and noted aversion (as I wanted the tension to go away). Three characteristics stage on the map?

Then eventually the tension broke, it left me and things felt a lot easier. I could notice and stay with the sensations that I wanted to investigate with ease. This was accompanied by some sexual energy. I noticed one particular jerky breath. Arising and Passing?

Then the tension in my head resumed, and thoughts arose that were accompanied by jealously. So i tried to investigate the tension and the thoughts. Dark night?

I started investigating consciousness and how it arises when the sense door meets the sense object. When my eye met one object (say, a painting), then met a different object (a cup). I reflected that that consciousness that was conscious of the painting was different to the one that was conscious of the cup. It wasn't the same, it wasn't stable, it changed as it met different objects. It became conscious of a different object, so it couldn't be fixed, it was changing. I used this technique with sounds, smells and thoughts too.

I then came to a very peaceful state, it was very easy to maintain, almost effortless I suppose. The tension was gone, although there was some pain in my legs (as I hadn't moved them for an hour or so). Anxiety arose about the pain, and I noted that and stayed with and investigated the painful sensations with some precision. I noted burning, and noted sharp pain. I quickly felt fine about those painful sensations being there and kept investigating them. I was then filled with an innocent joy, with no anxiety about anything, life just seemed wonderful and I felt full of a love for the people i was with, not a really explosive love, but quiet strong and peaceful. I felt OK about everything and appreciated everything.

Later on, I had a sense of something looming behind me. It is like the front of me is trying to come together with the back of me. I felt spacious, light, couldn't focus with as much precision but my awareness felt broader and vaster. I imagined trying to look through my head into the back of it, to look at this looming sensation that felt like it was behind me so the split would disappear. Equanimity?

I re read MCTB and what Daniel says about Equanimity and it seems to fit, but I wanted to check it out. I've had times in the past where similar things have happened, and all the emotional pain and things that had been bothering me was simply transformed when I investigated properly and it was accompanied by vastness, peace and this experience of the front and back of me being split. It feels like I'm trying to see and investigate consciousness, to look to see if there is anything fixed there, if there is a thing (a centre point) that looks out at the world, thinking it is separate.

I crossed the A & P about 3 years ago, it was a mind blowing life changing experience that lasted for hours, so a lot of the meditation experiences I have I tend to write off because they don't seem to be as big as that A & P event.

What do you think?

Daniel M Ingram, modified 10 Years ago at 10/12/11 1:15 AM
Created 10 Years ago at 10/12/11 1:15 AM

RE: Wanted to check some things out

Posts: 3230 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
your descriptions are interesting

it is posible you are getting to Equanimity, but context would help (such as previous months or weeks sits) as well as seeing what came after it in the next few weeks

thoughts of where you are, analysis, wondrinb, investigating, comprehending, peace, love, joy, ease and the like: can you see these arise and vanish on their own?

that is all that matters, really

the maps are just there to help you remember to practice regardless of what arises and not fall for the common traps

if you can notice the elements of your experience as they are, then the maps are superfluous

Leigh Smith, modified 10 Years ago at 10/12/11 2:46 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 10/12/11 2:46 PM

RE: Wanted to check some things out

Posts: 4 Join Date: 6/10/11 Recent Posts
Thanks Daniel.

Context wise: I don't really sit that often, i still struggle to find a posture I'm comfortable in. I do a lot of mindfulness practise and reflection off the cushion. Occasionally, I will feel really mindful and concentrated and find a comfortable place (in this instance a sofa) to sit on, this is what happened on sunday. Then I'll just sit and investigate my experience more deeply.

I was mainly walking around when I experienced all the peace, ease and joy. But I didn't note it. I've never done the Mahasi styling of noting practise properly as I practise in a different tradition, so when I practise and I start having the experiences I've spoken about (the ones that I think might be equanimity) I get a little stuck and don't know what to do. Or maybe I enjoy the state I'm in and don't really bother to investigate properly because of the enjoyment of it. Also, I don't spend much time in these states, they can last between 10 minutes or 40 minutes, so they can seem new and welcome and I don't investigate them more deeply.

I can remember I had a similar experience about 3 - 4 months ago, I was going through some painful emotional stuff, then I just decided to use vipassana techniques to investigate it and my relationship to the problems changed completely and I was left feeling peaceful, joyous, vast and wondering what on earth I'd been worrying about and why I needed to worry about anything. Also this front and back experience occurred. I can't remember how i felt afterwards though.

After this most recent experience: I felt really good on Monday morning, then for the last couple of days I've had periods of feeling really tender, sore, vulnerable, doubtful and grouchy. My emotions feel more at the surface, mainly ' negative' emotions.

If I get to that vast and peaceful state of mind again, I'll see if i can take more time to dwell in it and investigate it properly.