Progress in terms of daily life

End in Sight, modified 10 Years ago at 10/15/11 7:19 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 10/15/11 7:18 PM

Progress in terms of daily life

Posts: 1251 Join Date: 7/6/11 Recent Posts
I thought this reflection would be interesting to many here.

In some ways I see life after my recent shift in practice (a month ago? something like that?) as similar to a bear waking up from hiberation. It is good to be awake. Much better than to be hibernating. However, there is a transitional period between hibernating and being restored to normal consciousness. Immediately after this shift, I had a "chilled out" attitude and behavior pattern; nothing really bothered me; I had no particular motivation to do or not do anything; life flowed along in an interesting way. (Bernadette Roberts may describe something similar when she talks about adjusting to life with a lack of "personal energy" or whatever she calls it.) This was abnormal for me, as (in person) I can be quite animated, whimsical, and high-energy at times. It was also abnormal that I showed little behavioral interest in pursuing some ongoing (non-meditation) goals. There are some other examples of things along these lines, but I think I have expressed the general point.

Right now, I see these changes as being related to some kind of ongoing interference between the mode of perception I had attained, and the previous one which I was leaving behind. This interference is akin to the experience of a dazed bear stumbling out of its den after hibernation...it is now awake, it can now move, but there is a residual kind of dreaminess which will affect its behavior for some time. It is better than hibernating, but still weird.

As times goes on, I revert more and more to "normal" behavior / interests / goals / etc., which seems to be correlated with the wearing-away of the old mode of perception, and deeper and deeper forays into the cosmic awesomeness that is simply being alive, here, now.

So, for those pursuing the same goal that I was / am, it may be helpful to keep in mind that, once you make this particular transition, it may take some time for you to regain all your faculties...but, once you regain them, they start functioning more and more smoothly than ever before (as there is so much less garbage to stand in the way). So, if at the point immediately post-transition you experience "residue", you should make it a priority to eliminate as much of it as possible (no matter how chilled-out everything is) so as to return to normal (and superior) functioning sooner.

Of course, I am not done yet, so who knows what the future will hold in terms of adjustment / etc.
End in Sight, modified 10 Years ago at 10/15/11 7:43 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 10/15/11 7:43 PM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

Posts: 1251 Join Date: 7/6/11 Recent Posts
To add an anecdote...I went to a reasonably-sized party a few weeks ago, and thought it would be an interesting test to see how that would turn out.

The result? I reconnected with a few people I hadn't seen in a long time, and had a great time meeting and chatting with a bunch of others. Everything went swimmingly.

No one appears to be able to notice any difference in me (except that very little appears to bother me, and I have curtailed behavior related to anger / annoyance / etc. quite a bit).

This all was in a state that had more "interference" than my current one.

It's pretty much what I expected, but interesting nonetheless.
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(D Z) Dhru Val, modified 10 Years ago at 11/13/11 9:30 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 11/13/11 9:30 PM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

Posts: 346 Join Date: 9/18/11 Recent Posts
End in Sight:


No one appears to be able to notice any difference in me (except that very little appears to bother me, and I have curtailed behavior related to anger / annoyance / etc. quite a bit).

This all was in a state that had more "interference" than my current one.

It's pretty much what I expected, but interesting nonetheless.


I can't really comment on your post as I don't have any experience with AF practice. But this part is interesting...

Reminds me of a social experiment a friend of mine showed me as a teenager. Basically I wore a watch and had a visible cell phone out, and went around asking people the time. Only one person pointed out that I was wearing a watch, everyone else just gave me the time without noticing anything strange.

If people are generally too caught up in their own temporal narratives to notice such obvious mischief, it really comes as no surprise that internal state shifts will tend go unnoticed.
End in Sight, modified 10 Years ago at 11/14/11 8:36 AM
Created 10 Years ago at 11/14/11 8:36 AM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

Posts: 1251 Join Date: 7/6/11 Recent Posts
D Z:
End in Sight:


No one appears to be able to notice any difference in me (except that very little appears to bother me, and I have curtailed behavior related to anger / annoyance / etc. quite a bit).

This all was in a state that had more "interference" than my current one.

It's pretty much what I expected, but interesting nonetheless.


I can't really comment on your post as I don't have any experience with AF practice.


Vipassana (the kind that you have done) is AF practice. emoticon

D Z:
Reminds me of a social experiment a friend of mine showed me as a teenager. Basically I wore a watch and had a visible cell phone out, and went around asking people the time. Only one person pointed out that I was wearing a watch, everyone else just gave me the time without noticing anything strange.

If people are generally too caught up in their own temporal narratives to notice such obvious mischief, it really comes as no surprise that internal state shifts will tend go unnoticed.


You are probably right, that an astute person would notice something, while the typical person will not.

However, I think the main difference that would be noticeable is related to the absence of "anti-social" feelings (wishing ill on others, acting in ways relating to that, etc.) rather than the absence of pro-social behaviors.
Nick NY, modified 10 Years ago at 12/11/11 9:11 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 12/11/11 9:11 PM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

Posts: 6 Join Date: 11/1/11 Recent Posts
End in Sight:

Vipassana (the kind that you have done) is AF practice. emoticon


I know this was somewhat in jest, but it caught my attention. I don't presume to know much about AF, but from the bit I've read so far of AF practice, it seems like an intentional fostering of a way of being that sometimes has arisen naturally for me on Vipassana retreats, especially during walking meditation. I don't mean that a PCE arises for me, but rather a kind of pleasant bathing in sensations becomes the natural practice. If you have more to say about how the kind of Vipassana that DZ has done is AF practice, I'd be much obliged.

(I guess the question probably belongs in the AF section, but wasn't sure you'd see it there if I quoted you.)
End in Sight, modified 10 Years ago at 12/11/11 10:07 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 12/11/11 10:06 PM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

Posts: 1251 Join Date: 7/6/11 Recent Posts
Nick NY:
End in Sight:

Vipassana (the kind that you have done) is AF practice. emoticon


I know this was somewhat in jest, but it caught my attention. I don't presume to know much about AF, but from the bit I've read so far of AF practice, it seems like an intentional fostering of a way of being that sometimes has arisen naturally for me on Vipassana retreats, especially during walking meditation. I don't mean that a PCE arises for me, but rather a kind of pleasant bathing in sensations becomes the natural practice. If you have more to say about how the kind of Vipassana that DZ has done is AF practice, I'd be much obliged.

(I guess the question probably belongs in the AF section, but wasn't sure you'd see it there if I quoted you.)


It was not in jest!

Briefly...the kinds of experiences that one aims to be rid of permanently, when pursuing AF, can be gotten rid of by observing in a very precise way how they originate (i.e. by doing vipassana).

While some practices like actualism involve methods that seem quite different, more and more I think that all roads lead to Rome (for those who practice in order to suffer less).

D Z may not have had AF as a goal, but the practice (precise observation of experience) would not have differed if it were and he wanted to approach it in this traditional way.
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Florian, modified 10 Years ago at 12/12/11 9:02 AM
Created 10 Years ago at 12/12/11 9:02 AM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

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Sam Watts has some good points in his blog post, Disintegration and Reintegration ...

Cheers,
Florian
End in Sight, modified 10 Years ago at 12/12/11 10:03 AM
Created 10 Years ago at 12/12/11 10:00 AM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

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The link is interesting, in that for me it highlights how much difference there is between advice geared towards one attainment vs. advice geared towards another.

For example,

Sam Watts:
]But (of course you knew there had to be a “but.” There’s always a “but.”), the completeness of disintegration is not the end of your journey. This is perhaps the most common misunderstanding on the path of awakening. The finality of disintegration is not to be denied, so the newly awakened is not deluded. And yet, there is a tendency of the newly awakened to try to take up residence in the All, to plant their feet in the Abyss, as though their personality could be an adequate expression of the ineffable Reality they realized they are. When the sense of separateness is disintegrated and Reality is apprehended, there tends to be an ever-so-subtle contraction of the remaining tendency toward identification, which is just enough to delude the individual into thinking, “I am the All.” When you first awaken, this will likely occur.


Perhaps this is true for some kind of MCTB-esque attainment. However, the sort of awakening I am talking about is not about changing views (relinquishing the view, "I am a separate self", and perhaps incidentally taking up a new view, "I am the All / emptiness / whatever"). Rather, it is about seeing how entertaining any view along these lines is unsatisfactory, and then doing away with the faculty of mind that entertains them in the first place.

As such, the advice Sam Watts gives is geared towards a person whose practice has let them to believe something like this...

Sam Watts:
Yes, Reality is the way it is. It has always been the way it is. The root cause of our errant perception of separateness is ignorance of the truth of Reality.


Rather than like this...

Buddha:
And what is the noble truth of the origination of stress? The craving that makes for further becoming — accompanied by passion & delight, relishing now here & now there...

And which are the...craving-verbalizations dependent on what is internal? There being 'I am,' there comes to be 'I am here,' there comes to be 'I am like this' ... 'I am otherwise' ...


And the results (as well as the advice that is appropriate) naturally differ.
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Daniel Johnson, modified 10 Years ago at 12/12/11 1:40 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 12/12/11 1:40 PM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

Posts: 401 Join Date: 12/16/09 Recent Posts
End in Sight:
In some ways I see life after my recent shift in practice (a month ago? something like that?)
...
So, for those pursuing the same goal that I was / am, it may be helpful to keep in mind that, once you make this particular transition,


I'm not sure if you're being intentionally vague, but I haven't read all of your posts and I don't know what shift you had or what goals you are/were pursuing, (especially given the comment about vipassana and AF leading to Rome.) Is there a link to some other post in which you mention what these things are that you are talking about?
End in Sight, modified 10 Years ago at 12/12/11 1:56 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 12/12/11 1:56 PM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

Posts: 1251 Join Date: 7/6/11 Recent Posts
There isn't a particular post, but there were probably a number of different ones at the time (in context of dialogue about various things) which this post assumed knowledge of.

My goal is the end of all suffering that can be ended...which involves the end of fear, the end of unhappiness, the end of anxiety, the end of unease, the end of the "positive" feelings that are really negative, the end of identification and identity-making, the end of the attention wave, the end of anything that contributes to suffering which I may not yet have identified or which I forgot to include in this list...the whole lot of misery.

At the time, the shift I was talking about was one in which I no longer experienced the majority of instances of suffering (as I understood them), but still experienced some kind of "tension-residue" of them.
Nick NY, modified 10 Years ago at 12/13/11 11:48 PM
Created 10 Years ago at 12/13/11 11:48 PM

RE: Progress in terms of daily life

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Thank you for expanding on that. I had been focusing on the "inclining toward sensuousness" and "feeling good" aspects of AF, and your post reminded me that investigating what's in the way of feeling good is part of the method too.

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