I think I crossed A and P

Ivan Perez, modified 1 Year ago at 3/7/23 1:19 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/7/23 1:19 PM

I think I crossed A and P

Posts: 14 Join Date: 2/17/23 Recent Posts
On the last day of ten day retreat, I was doing vipassana body scan meditation(we'd been doing the past 4 days as well). I had strong practice all morning; hours of uninterrupted mindfulness; strangely enough I was focused on a mental object(expectation of future) when it happened even though I was focused on body scan at the time. I saw that it was just a little blip in my mind then lightning flash of fear then bliss lasting only like 5 seconds. It could have also been just a weird rapture tho. Idk. I had a second less intense but similar experience later in the evening doing anapana. I felt there were two breaths— my physical breath and a feeling of where my breath ought to be(perhaps my intention to breath?). Not the first time I’d notice this, but this time I felt a similar flash of fear then bliss. 
A big reason I think it is the a and p is I’ve been very energetic and equanimous ever since. I can easily percieve impermanence and there's been a warm pulsing in my body for like two days. I feel very detached from mental and physical objects. It feels like I'm only watching them instead of feeling them. mindfulness just seems so effortless. I feel very present. it's like I'm high all the time. Very weird and tingly. 
Also prior to having that experience, I was having symptoms of the knowledge of the three characteristics stage(intense migraines; bodily spasms) as well as a thought stream that felt like a miniature "dark night". I felt disgusted with existence and all the suffering it entails. 

Did I cross A and P? What should I expect next? What techniques should I use to continue down the path?

*Note: I'd also been able to percieve vibrations before this(such as flickering of the nostrils when observing the breath) and have had similar less intense experiences in the past so this might not be my first A and P. This is the first time however that the effects afterwards have been so dramatic. Feels like a discount awakening this time around.
shargrol, modified 1 Year ago at 3/9/23 6:18 AM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/9/23 6:18 AM

RE: I think I crossed A and P

Posts: 2490 Join Date: 2/8/16 Recent Posts
No guarantees, but I can try to help you diagnose...

Hopefully you're continuing to practice daily because that will also give some useful info... If you sit for an hour, what happens?

Could you describe what you mean by being "energetic" off cushion?

And could you say more about your practice history leading up to the retreat?  And could you describe how the 10 day retreat went, day by day?

Ultimately, time will give you the true answer. There is a classic guidance which says "take a year and a day" before deciding, which is really good advice. If it was A&P, the next stages will be dissolution and the dark night. If it was something like Stream Entry then you'll notice a different set of experiences. And if it was nothing at all, you'll notice nothing at all changes. emoticon  But it can be fun to attempt to diagnose these things.
Ivan Perez, modified 1 Year ago at 3/16/23 1:01 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/16/23 1:01 PM

RE: I think I crossed A and P

Posts: 14 Join Date: 2/17/23 Recent Posts
The blips and pulses, equanimity and general awesomeness faded about a day or two after I wrote that. Now I find it extremely hard to meditate or get excited abt anything. Before I could feel everything with laser precision. now I can barely feel the breath at my nostrils. It's frustrating. mind wanders incessantly. I guess I'm in dissolution now. I don't feel too bad abt all these negative things since the book I'm reading(MCTemoticon said this is normal. 
Still meditating for at least an hour each day, although my sessions are so scatter brained. Do you think I'm actually in dissolution? And if so, any advice?
shargrol, modified 1 Year ago at 3/16/23 3:32 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/16/23 3:32 PM

RE: I think I crossed A and P

Posts: 2490 Join Date: 2/8/16 Recent Posts
Cool, yeah sounds like A&P followed by dissolution.

The biggest problem with dissolution is that people stop practicing becuase they think something is going wrong. Dissolution can be kind of challenging when using body scanning practices because the body becomes kind of numb and vague during this stage. So it can be helpful to remember that just because things aren't clear and precise, that doesn't mean something is going wrong -- "numb" and "vagueness" is what the body is now.

This is where knowing the maps are helpful and we can realize "this is just a normal stage that happens".