Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

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Stefan R, modified 1 Month ago.

Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
Welcome, my friends, to the third log of the journey. 
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Stefan R, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
Today's sit revealed some interesting tidbits. 
  • Restlessness really dialled up. Just hurrying but to nowhere in particular. Like a plane trying to find a tarmac on a really foggy night. What's the destination here, hm?
  • Self-referentiality, the illusion of self really presenting itself on subtler and deeper levels. A spontaneous image arose of a line drawing itself, and trying to draw a circle around itself. Impossible -- seems like an appropriate metaphor for what's going on here. So many ideas of what "me" is supposed to me, either in tangible terms (this body, this sense, that sense) or as an idea (abstraction)
  • Subtle bits of dullness showing themselves again, but from a deeper level than before, I'm sure of that. 
  • Lots of thoughts about what "I" am, but more like the concept, me the meditator, me the person sitting here, me the thought having a thought about a thought, etc... Just the line trying to circle itself. 
Today I felt such a great sense of ease, peace, and just joy. Everything coming and going. Still, some slightly weird perceptual stuff, like everything was sinking into itself for about 1 minute, but it passed. 

My mind is on turbo right now too, it's just spotting this subtle identification stuff so quickly, at least that how it seems. Surely stuff is getting past it, but I'm sure in time all the stuff will synchronise with itself eventually, with good quality consistent work over time emoticon
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 2173 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
"   I'm sure ...   "

Im not sure of anything anymore emoticon Good luck with your newly started log-journey. May it be of benefit to many!
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Stefan R, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
Papa Che Dusko "   I'm sure ...   " Im not sure of anything anymore emoticon Good luck with your newly started log-journey. May it be of benefit to many!


Are you sure of this? emoticon

Thank you, I've read a lot of your logs and they've definitely helped me. Be well, my friend.
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Stefan R, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
I'm churning out logs because stuff is coming so quick and fast, the whole thing is really presenting itself really quickly at me. 

Two themes today
1. The seeming distinctness between each of the senses
  • ​​​​​​​Took a while, but those illusory barriers came down
  • It was a matter of just letting each sense in, like a sponge absorbing water, fully soaked through. Complete saturation. Where did the sound end, the thought start, the feeling begins, etc..? No way to tell. Woosh, gone. I just burst out laughing, it was such a big piece of tension lurking there that I had never really realised!
  • Sensations intermingle, criss-cross, and are fluxing textures, there's no distinctness to each one, no barrier from one to the other

2. The desire to merge with the essences or ideas or abstractions of things
  • The seeking is one idea, the sought is another
  • But they are distinct, they will never, could never touch
  • They get pretty close though! Good try! Everyone wants to "be" "happy", but it overshadows the experience itself
  • Not sure if this one is gone, but when I saw it, I laughed so hard when it felt like it "dropped". I laughed really hard when I saw this, it was such a relief!
  • It was so nice to understand this very niggly subtle thing -- so good!
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Stefan R, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
Goldilocks Syndrome
​​​​​​​
  • This sensation feels right = rest here
  • This sensation feels wrong = subtly avoid 
  • This sensation feels manageable, it is liked
  • This sensation feels unmanageable, it is avoided
Now you combine them, and you see what a deadly duo conceit and restlessness are. Restlessness wants things to be right or wrong to find a restful place. We only become restless in anticipation of something at the end of it all -- like when you really need to go to the toilet and you get all jittery and do the "toilet dance" to keep it in. The mind is just nonstop doing the toilet dance as it waits for it. In another way, this sid wants to find rest in an imagined "that side". 

Conceit wants things to be manageable. Am I good enough to deal with this experience? Is this experience worthy of some co-occurring idea of me? Or in another way, how I feel it; "Do I feel taller than this sensation?" if yes, nice, good, it's liked. If no, then subtly avoid.

​​​​​​​There's a ghost in the machine!
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 2173 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
Have you tried Tonglen? Could be a good tool in this situation to soften the "this is happening to me" sense and broaden it to "all beings". I like shargrol's take on Tonglen. Tell me if you are interested so to paste it here.

All the best S
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Stefan R, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
I dabble with Tonglen, I do it "off-campus" -- so to speak -- when I'm out and about. I like the instructions given by Chogyam Trungpa in "Training the Mind". My absolute favourite of the mantras or teachings is "drive all blames into one", meaning that all faults and misunderstandings we have about reality are caused by our own ignorance. There is absolutely nothing else to do. 
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Stefan R, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
  • Try to stop trying
  • What are your thoughts of a mind free from thought?
  • Where do you start when trying to realise the mind without a reference point?
  • Try to rise above rising above
  • Try to do nothing
  • Try to surrender
  • Let go of letting go
  • Attempt to control the impulse to control
  • Try to observe the observation 
  • Try desiring to end all desires
  • Try clinging to non-clinging
  • Try avoiding avoidance 
  • Try ignoring your ignorance

The illusion is empty or solid; impermanent or permanent; satisfying or unsatisfying.

It is not an illusion.

It is neither permanent nor impermanent. It is neither empty nor solid. It is neither satisfying nor unsatisfying.

I understand it; neither born nor dead. Beyond birth or death. Never born, undying. The Dhamma. Tao. Zen. Nibbana. Whatever you wanna call it.

Just there. Peace.
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Stefan R, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
I had a strong glimpse of it on the toilet about an hour ago. And just now the sides seemed to flip over as I was walking down the stairs and looking at the garden. I just burst out laughing. 

Everything is just simple, there, with no disagreements about how it should or shouldn't be. Another way to think of it is like every part taking responsibility for being "here" or "there". One infinitely regressing side, into itself from within itself.

Like how the shading on a 2D drawing makes it appear 3D. Put your finger on the shading and the illusion is gone. Now get an eraser... Maybe my finger is on it, and it seems erased. Let's see how long it lasts emoticon
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Stefan R, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
After about a day and a half of having a strong and stable glimpse of it all, I woke up and there were little mental itches and tangles.

Working on a few things:
  • Trying to be too good for arrogance
  • Trying to be too pathetic for insecurity
  • What's the trying? There's no trying. But I'm gonna indulge this more and more to really see how it goes. Really get caught up in the silliness and messiness of it all. 
  • These little tricks are about noticing the mind trying to feel better than or worse than. The truth is usually paradoxically, and unflatteringly, right in the middle (but beyond both).
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 1 Month ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 2173 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
I will pop some pop-corn now emoticon I find you latest loggings to be rather interesting! ... (popping popcorn ... staring at the screen ... ) 

Best wishes mate! emoticon (break a leg) emoticon 
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Stefan R, modified 23 Days ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
Hvala Dusko emoticon

Averaging about 6-7 hours per day last week (hooray no uni or work obligations!)

Honestly, just vibing. Kinda seeing the entire charade for what it is. Some childhood trauma stuff surfaced and I had some deeply purifying sits. And the rest was mostly just doing the thing over and over. I dunno, spirituality has lost a lot of its appeal to me, especially talking about it. I think working on concentration now makes a lot of sense, as that's the more practical application of the whole thing -- developing your power after insight. Okay, I have a good idea of how all the pieces fit together, time to navigate the whole thing!

I'm finally learning how to navigate concentration and what it is. The magic in intentions is very real! The magic of awareness is very real. There's no picking out an object and following it. It's more like this: "attention" probably shares etymology with "attend". Attend, definition: "to be present for". We're simply being present for sensations as they arise. "Me" becomes present to the sensation and vice versa (there's no real distinction other than the felt sense of duality), so the attending becomes sweeter and sweeter. In the past, I was thinking concentration is about blocking out the distractions and just grinding up on the object. But no, the more open we are to distraction, the less possible they are. Once we are fully open, distractions are impossible -- how can one be wilfully distracted? Now I see it very clearly, the immediacy of each sensation clearly. Emptiness and non-duality do really facilitate the whole thing. Impermanence too, in the fleetingness of the sense of attention itself, the sense of the sensation. Suffering too, in the unsatisfactory nature of trying to make a "good" or a "bad" out of the process. Or maybe I'm getting it wrong, I don't know -- it's a current working hypothesis nonetheless. 
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 23 Days ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 2173 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
"Hvala "

Ha! emoticon Another Balkans boy on DhO?
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Stefan Stefan, modified 21 Days ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
Ima nas svugdje ;-)

​​​​​​​Why am I feeling so cynical about everything now? Where's this come from? Hmm
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 20 Days ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 2173 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
Neka ima druze Stefane emoticon neka si ti meni ziv i zdrav! Da si mi ti ovdje sad bi ja pred tebe i kafu i rakiju, i cvaraka, i pite krompiruse emoticon
That cynical feel you can wrap into Tonglen and see what comes on the other side emoticon

​​​​​​​Best wishes! 
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Stefan Stefan, modified 7 Days ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
The cynicism was great, actually. A lot was learned. I think it's a symptom of maturing out of the strictures of a spiritual path, as such, and moving towards more and more profound deeper, and yet subtler liberation. The cynicism presented itself as an abandonment of lofty ideals, abandonment of hope for a better future other than the one being built now. Abandonment of something tangibly central realising emptiness other than the emptiness itself. Abandonment of a finishing point. Abandonment of a structure to frame experience at all. 7th, 8th, 9th, and 10th fetters. Mara, I see you.

Spirituality can be a real dead end in itself. 

There's no way but the middle way -- which was already happening. 
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Stefan Stefan, modified 6 Days ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 176 Join Date: 3/28/21 Recent Posts
After a near-death experience and absolutely no suffering arising in conjunction with events before, during or after, I'm very confident in how this path has unfolded. 
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 6 Days ago.

RE: Stefan's Log #3: Mara Delenda Est

Posts: 2173 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
Glad you made it! Best wishes S!

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