Stream Entry claim...

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D Z, modified 9 Years ago.

Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 346 Join Date: 9/18/11 Recent Posts
I got stream entry around 5am on Nov 1st. Waited a couple of days to post this in order to be sure because it seems too soon, and it seemed like a very small discontinuity.

Since then my mind has been noticeably different and calm. And had another more noticeable (more of a clonk, the first one was more of a blip) discontinuity yesterday. So I am pretty certain now.

Also my concentration is great, and can access the 4th Jhana directly.

Had been sitting around in equanimity for a bit, getting lots of good advice from the poster Tommy M, that helped me progress quickly. Also observing the 3Cs all the time, not just while sitting and having very few responsibilities other than meditation helps...

My Practice Journal

Some equanimity based journal entries...
Noting the tingling, noting the dread, and noting pain when ever it comes to the center of attention. Attempting to mindful of atleast 1 of the 3 characteristics in each moment. There were a few lapses in noting here.

I find my concentration growing and entered into the first Jhana, which slowly turns into the second. I keep noting the breath and notice the unsatisfactory qualities of these states.

I try to notice the feelings of an observer and allow the mind to let them go. I enter a distinctly different Jhanic state where the sense of self is dissolved into sensations, and there is a feeling of spaciousness. Still noting, I get excited, mark the excitement. It stops. Speculate Note speculation. It stops.

Till finally back to Ra, Ra, Ra, Fa, Fa, Fa. I decide to stop noting for a bit. And bask in the tingling sensations of this new jhana (probably should have been paying attention to the 3 Cs of the jahna. I notice the sense of self has expanded into the large background. The jhana collpases. But I manager to enter into it a second time and again stopped noting to just bask in the jhana.



The senses seem interconnect but still distinct. What I mean is that I can still hear sounds, but they also distort the visual flickering that is going on.

If I pay attention to the flickering without reacting everything becomes more shaky. But I am unable to do so for a sustained period of time.



I wrote this after the first blip...

I was laying in bed not feeling sleepy at all, too much energy, so started meditating 'informally' just for fun. Started observing for a while. Get to the point where all senses are felt as vibrations, which I explained earlier.

This time I kept observing, in the way I used to observe the pleasurable sensation of the breath to get to the 1st jhana.

The vibrations intensified. Soon the field of holding the vibrations gets shakey. Keep observing.

A sudden dip followed by a calm arising. All those vibrations that were being built up are gone. The words anti-climatic fit. I fee a big sense of relief.

I don't know what it was but I know I feel calm and a sense of completion. My concentration is suddenly much better, not sure which concentration Jhanas I am getting in and out of but they are great. Something is different.

Going to wait a little bit before posting on DhO to make sure it is what happened, in the mean time going to continue my usual practise


The second clonk, I didn't write about when it happened...

I have been busy with something, and unable to formally meditate. But enjoying my ability to access any the 4th concentration jhana at anytime, and also just how at peace my mind seems. The no-self stuff I would have dismissed as nonsense last year, makes intuitive sense. The world just makes more sense.

Just paying attention to things as I drive home. Mini A&P to Dukkha to Equanimity. A couple of hours after getting home, another disconitnuity, a clonk. Much more noticeable than the blip. Very little effort, compared to how hard I have been trying over the past little bit.
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Tommy M, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 1199 Join Date: 11/12/10 Recent Posts
Sounds promising, the changes you mention and the sense of "something" being different sound like what most people talk about after getting 1st path but I'd still err on the side of caution for a few weeks, don't get complacent and maintain at least some sort of practice just in case.

Having some knowledge of your practice before this point, I have no reason to doubt your claim but, since I'm just a skeptical bastard at the best of times, I recommend holding fire for the moment and checking a few things out:

- Fruitions: By the sounds of things, you're noticing them already anyway so try seeing if you can call them up at will. Just resolve to experience the 1st path fruition, leave it and go about your business.

- Jhanas: If you've gotten 1st path then you'll probably now have access to all eight jhanas. Practice entering them at will, see if you can abide in each for a few minutes and get familiar with them. Once you're in 4th jhana, shift the focus to the sensations of infinite space and see what happens...

Everything sounds pretty good, enjoy it. I'll avoid saying "congratulations" for the moment....in fact, fuck it, congratulations. emoticon
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D Z, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 346 Join Date: 9/18/11 Recent Posts
Tommy M:

don't get complacent and maintain at least some sort of practice just in case....


- Fruitions: By the sounds of things, you're noticing them already anyway so try seeing if you can call them up at will. Just resolve to experience the 1st path fruition, leave it and go about your business.

- Jhanas: If you've gotten 1st path then you'll probably now have access to all eight jhanas. Practice entering them at will, see if you can abide in each for a few minutes and get familiar with them. Once you're in 4th jhana, shift the focus to the sensations of infinite space and see what happens...


Definitely plan on continuing to practice regardless. Still sense that the mind is changed in a good way and the no-self stuff makes finally makes sense, but also noticing room for improvement.

Been actively trying to call up Fruitions since the first experience, but have not able to do so. Both times it happened was unexpected.

The higher concentration Jhanas are accessible, I pretty much just call it all 4th because I can't distinguish very clearly. 5/6 feel very similar to each other. 7 becomes 8 quickly etc.

Out of curiosity, were you able to see vibrations *before* you started vipassana, or only afterwards?


I don't distinctly remember seeing vibrations before doing 'Noting' practice. But they do feel familiar, if that makes sense.
End in Sight, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 1251 Join Date: 7/6/11 Recent Posts
D Z:
I don't distinctly remember seeing vibrations before doing 'Noting' practice. But they do feel familiar, if that makes sense.


Makes sense. I think it's possible that your mind had already done some vipassana in the past without realizing it (which was the reason I asked about vibrations), hence the quickness with which you've made progress, now that you've taken it up formally.
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D Z, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 346 Join Date: 9/18/11 Recent Posts
End in Sight:
D Z:
I don't distinctly remember seeing vibrations before doing 'Noting' practice. But they do feel familiar, if that makes sense.


Makes sense. I think it's possible that your mind had already done some vipassana in the past without realizing it (which was the reason I asked about vibrations), hence the quickness with which you've made progress, now that you've taken it up formally.


Maybe. But knowing this stuff is possible before hand, going for it with full resolve, and getting great advice from people is essential. Also I think that having the correct intellectual understanding of what to look for in Vipassana helps.

Otherwise I would have been spinning in place for decades.
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Teague Anderson, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 104 Join Date: 8/1/11 Recent Posts
Congrats.

While it's still fresh in your mind, can you tell me what the lead up was like in the days and weeks before?

Were you meditating in EQ pretty consistently?

How long have you been practicing in EQ waiting for the shift?

What was your daily practice regimen and what technique were you using at the height of EQ?

I've been reaching EQ in my sits (and daily life) since my last course in mid September, so I'm just looking for a little advice from a freshly minted stream enterer. Hope to join you soon.

-Teague
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Teague Anderson, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 104 Join Date: 8/1/11 Recent Posts
Dang, I just read your practice notes, and that's some rapid progress.
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D Z, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 346 Join Date: 9/18/11 Recent Posts
Teague,

I am not a very experienced technical Vipassana mediator and my experiences are not typical.

A childhood A&P / Dark night experience while chanting hindu prayer mantras for doing well on an exam made me a staunch atheist / philosophical materialist.

And fairly antagonistic towards spiritual / religious traditions. But I did work through a lot of Dark Night type stuff, multiple times, using a sort of self-administered Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for years as a means for mental development before taking up meditation. (never to the point of stream entry, but probably EQ). Examining self-talk and how it gave rise to neurosis eventually lead to meditation.

Maybe this is why funding Vipassana and the 3Cs framework lead to such rapid progress. Having too much time on my hands and being able to practice all the time helped as well.

Anyways I looked at your practice log, and looks like you are almost there. Will leave some comments there for a couple of things you can try during your practise.
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Jackson Wilshire, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 97 Join Date: 5/6/09 Recent Posts
Hey D Z,

I agree with what others have said regarding the astounding speed at which stream entry may have occurred for you. That's really cool.

I'm commenting here only because your descriptions are strikingly similar to my own account of stream entry, which occurred in February, 2009.

I was also laying in bed, but not very sleepy. At the time I felt as thought I was bathed in equanimity. I had no expectation that cessation might occur as I laid there, watching the little flickers of light dancing in front of the backdrop provided by my eyelids.

That's when I suddenly felt as though I had been unplugged, and the next thing I remember was powering back up. The sense of well-being was at that point unmatched, and I just enjoyed it until I fell asleep.

The "build-up and release" type of fruition came soon after, and persisted for a number of months. After a while the energetic intensity of practice decreased significantly. Things just sort of became less and less abrupt and turbulent over the years.

I'm interested to hear more from you, so keep your practice journal going. If you really are practicing through to cessation, it will keep happening.

Oh, I also wanted to say that "calling up" fruition didn't work for me at first. Just after stream entry there was way too much grasping and craving for the cessation moment, which always derailed the possibility of its occurrence. It wasn't until I was able to balance clear intention (or "resolve") with dispassionate awareness that I was able to call cessation up "at will" (though, not really in a volitional way like opening or closing my hand). Getting a decent understanding of basic magick helps in this regard, if you haven't done that already. Alan Chapman has written some really good free books on the subject, found at his website - www.alanchapman.me

If this is the real thing, congrats! And thank you for posting your notes, as thing kind of openness is really good for inspiring people to practice.

-Jackson
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Tommy M, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 1199 Join Date: 11/12/10 Recent Posts
It wasn't until I was able to balance clear intention (or "resolve") with dispassionate awareness that I was able to call cessation up "at will" (though, not really in a volitional way like opening or closing my hand).

This is great advice, Jackson. Good to see you around again!

There's a 'sleight of mind' you can learn to do, it gets you back to that dispassionate awareness really quickly and can be called up at will with a bit of practice. Resolve in a straightforward and uncomplicated way, for example "I will attain a fruition in the next five minutes" and then immediately direct the mind to something completely unrelated to the resolution, a very effective method is laughter. Even just forcing yourself to laugh out loud until it becomes a genuine laugh does the trick, but basically anything which allows you to switch from the desired outcome to a state of, as Jackson nicely puts it, dispassionate awareness. It's all about implanting the idea and then releasing it so that the mind can do what it does.

Hope all's well with you.
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Jackson Wilshire, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 97 Join Date: 5/6/09 Recent Posts
Tommy M:
This is great advice, Jackson. Good to see you around again!


Thanks, Tommy. It's good to be around!

Tommy M:
There's a 'sleight of mind' you can learn to do, it gets you back to that dispassionate awareness really quickly and can be called up at will with a bit of practice. Resolve in a straightforward and uncomplicated way, for example "I will attain a fruition in the next five minutes" and then immediately direct the mind to something completely unrelated to the resolution,...


Exactly.

Tommy M:
... a very effective method is laughter. Even just forcing yourself to laugh out loud until it becomes a genuine laugh does the trick, but basically anything which allows you to switch from the desired outcome to a state of, as Jackson nicely puts it, dispassionate awareness.


I have not tried laughter, but I hear it's an excellent "banishing" ritual. I can see why it works, in that laughter is a good way to release energy, as well as to feel a sense of genuine well-being. When we feel good, we don't crave. Even temporary feelings of well-being can offset craving long enough to increase the probability of a magical result - at least in my experience.

Tommy M:
It's all about implanting the idea and then releasing it so that the mind can do what it does.


Yes, that's my understanding as well.

I don't consider myself to be any kind of expert at magick, by the way. I'm learning more about it, though, as my practice just sort of lead me to it - or so it would seem. I've been recognizing just how much magick is involved in insight practice, and even in life-in-general, even though it usually goes completely unnoticed. Making progress in insight breaks down the self-other barriers, which makes this stuff more apparent.

But I digress...

Best!

-Jackson
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D Z, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 346 Join Date: 9/18/11 Recent Posts
Jackson Wilshire:

I'm interested to hear more from you, so keep your practice journal going. If you really are practicing through to cessation, it will keep happening.

Oh, I also wanted to say that "calling up" fruition didn't work for me at first. Just after stream entry there was way too much grasping and craving for the cessation moment, which always derailed the possibility of its occurrence. It wasn't until I was able to balance clear intention (or "resolve") with dispassionate awareness that I was able to call cessation up "at will" (though, not really in a volitional way like opening or closing my hand). Getting a decent understanding of basic magick helps in this regard, if you haven't done that already. Alan Chapman has written some really good free books on the subject, found at his website - www.alanchapman.me


-Jackson


Yeah I have been lazy with the practice thread.

And thanks. Think you are spot on about the grasping thing. Also yeah, for me trying to do this stuff 'volitional way', mostly just strong state shifts or dips that mimic cessastion, but aren't really it. But sometimes after I stop an actual cessation does happen.

I have been slowly but steadily getting better at the calling up fruitions thing after getting some good advice form people at DhO in another thread but it is not yet 'at will'. Will look into Alan Chapan;s work and see if some magick techniques help with this.
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Jackson Wilshire, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 97 Join Date: 5/6/09 Recent Posts
Thanks for the reply, D Z.

D Z:
And thanks. Think you are spot on about the grasping thing. Also yeah, for me trying to do this stuff 'volitional way', mostly just strong state shifts or dips that mimic cessastion, but aren't really it. But sometimes after I stop an actual cessation does happen.


What you said here is important, I think. If letting go results in an actual cessation, but trying to cause cessations intentionally just results in mock-cessations of some kind, the better way to practice seems pretty evident.

D Z:
I have been slowly but steadily getting better at the calling up fruitions thing after getting some good advice form people at DhO in another thread but it is not yet 'at will'. Will look into Alan Chapan;s work and see if some magick techniques help with this.


I don't think the "at will" is important at all. I think calling up cessation through intention (i.e. resolve) is more skillful. The former is more of a parlor trick, in my opinion. It does little to help you develop the skills that will help you make it through the Paths to come.

A fun way to becoming proficient at what I'm talking about is to practice making resolutions to experience cessation through one of the "three doors" (i.e. anicca, anatta, or dukkha), or even in some combination (e.g. anicca as primary w/ anatta as secondary). You can set the resolution in the Equanimity stage, and then practice letting it go completely by going back to noting something neutral (e.g. the rise and fall of the abdomen during in and out breaths). Some time will pass, and then cessation will occur. Take notes on the results.

Actually, I remember working through these exercises with Kenneth and Tarin back at the old DhO a couple years ago. It's really fun :-)

I still recommend Chapman's work, in terms of getting a basic understanding of how Magick works. Also, spend as much time as you can getting familiar with the samatha jhanas. The fourth jhana is particularly useful in terms of magical practice, for use in dharma practice or otherwise. Stream entry gave me quick access to jhanas 1-4, but I didn't get into higher jhanas until after my second full-fledged progress of insight cycle (i.e. second path). That's not the case for everyone, though. See what you can do :-)

-Jackson
End in Sight, modified 9 Years ago.

RE: Stream Entry claim...

Posts: 1251 Join Date: 7/6/11 Recent Posts
D Z:
I got stream entry around 5am on Nov 1st. Waited a couple of days to post this in order to be sure because it seems too soon,


It's quite possible to get stream entry even faster than you did (assuming your claim is correct), even if it tends not to happen like that very often.

Out of curiosity, were you able to see vibrations *before* you started vipassana, or only afterwards?

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