Unknown territory

Blil O’Blil, modified 1 Year ago at 2/21/23 6:31 AM
Created 1 Year ago at 2/21/23 6:24 AM

Unknown territory

Post: 1 Join Date: 2/21/23 Recent Posts

A recent post elsewhere resulted in this seeming like a potentially helpful place to repost my experience. Here goes:

I had a (for me) very unusual experience yesterday. I’ve trained in samadhi for 15 years, but have done relatively little dedicated insight practice, so was hoping one of you insight practitioners could help me get a handle on it.

I was happily pootling along in the 2nd Jhana, and then noticed that there was very subtle aversion present (probs due to comparison with other times in J2). Noticing this caused the mind to instantly drop into a very stable and joyful 3rd Jhana. Shortly after, I noticed “this is where intentions come from." This wasn’t thought in words, it was seen clearly. I can’t clearly say what the “this” would be referring to.
I was able to see intentions arising, persisting and subsiding very very clearly. The whole thing seemed ‘realer than real’ if that makes sense. I could rest in a way that seemed to stop intentions from forming. This showed clearly the suffering/binding that is associated with intentions. Seeing intentions clearly, including the intention that’s a component of attention, caused the ground to totally fall away from underneath me. I’m finding it hard to put into words. The subject was just a still sense of awareness floating in a vast still blackness. None of my story or personality, just awareness suspended in the still blackness. No sense of body. There was delight, but it was different to sukkha. It felt intensely euphoric at times. There was one really short episode (maybe 10s) of strong fear, but I backed away from it. I can’t remember clearly what caused it.

I went in and out of this state for about three and a half hours. What pulled me out and kept me out was trying to think about/understand the state. What got me back in (instantly) was recollecting what I’d seen regarding intention, not verbally, but really seeing it again. I could get back there via the third jhana too. 

After it was ‘over’, there was a powerful feeling of love and kindness, which is pretty unusual for me.

I was also left strangely bright. Almost wired, but smooth, not jangly. Sleepiness didn’t come as normal and sleep when it came seemed light.

Today it’s like I’m floating around on a cloud of gentle happiness. Had a busy morning in the monastery kitchen with lots of visitors to interact with and help. Normally that causes some turbulence but today it was just really nice.

So, what was going on here? is this just the kind of experience that’s to be expected from insight practice? Where to go from here? Like I say I don’t really do insight practices, so I could really do with some ELI5ing. 

Aeon , modified 1 Year ago at 2/21/23 9:03 AM
Created 1 Year ago at 2/21/23 9:03 AM

RE: Unknown territory

Posts: 212 Join Date: 1/31/23 Recent Posts
I am open to being wrong, and I am no expert, but if I had to guess, I would guess the arising and passing away (A&P).

Bright lights, energy and mood boost, reduced sleep, enhanced concentration all sound like A&P.

You may enjoy this link about A&P, as well as reading MCTB2 section about insight cycles.