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Unknowing Event in High Equanimity. Seeking has diminished.

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Unknowing Event in High Equanimity. Seeking has diminished.
equanimity & fourth vipassana jhana
Answer
12/21/12 8:11 PM
First, some basic observations about practice:

-The motivation to practice is considerably less future oriented and more based on curiosity about things like curiosity itself.

-Practice is *almost* effortless. Any strong effort or feeling like I need to achieve something produces suffering which is seen very clearly and dropped right away.

-When I stop and concentrate on the sensory information coming through a particular sense door(other than the thinking mind), like vision or the feeling body, all the sensations of that door dissolve into vibrations immediately.

-The resolution of the vibrations varies(usually based on how clarity fluctuates with my sleep cycle and metabolism), but they become increasingly fine as I observe.

-When I practice choiceless awareness and evenly cover the entire sense field, the same thing happens, but more slowly as things integrate.

-I become much more concentrated than ever before while doing insight practices if I stare off into an open space and the perceptions of all sensations become more precise

-Thoughts are by far the most slippery and congealed sensations, in that they move around and usually arent really perceived as vibratory like the other senses are, however-

-When practice begins, mental proliferation ceases quickly, so that the spinning and branching loops of gross mental sensations mostly disappear and reveal much more subtle movements of mind.

-When this occurs, I notice that by the very act of looking for something(the centerpoint, or reified self), I am suffering.

-The sense that I am practicing is replaced by the sense of a process unfolding.

-At this level of seeing, the idea of "practice" itself(meaning working towards something) seems dualistic.

-As long as there isnt any business to attend to, like clocking back in from my lunch break, the process will continue.

-If I start doing something, the process regresses a little, but sort of "waits for me" to return and rest in it.

-It is as if I am on the doorstep of High Equanimity about 60% of my waking hours and all I have to do for practice to begin is to notice that.

-Things have been this way for about a week and I havent noticed any clear A&P or Dark Night- related phenomena in that time.


The event in question:

The other day I was on my lunch break. I relaxed and sort of checked in with the sense field. As soon as I did, the things listed above happened. I immediatedly entered Hi-EQ. I stared into an open space for awhile to deepen concentration on the vibrations.

Over the course of about fifteen minutes I deconstructed the sense field into a big fluxing ocean of fine vibrations. At that point I realized that I was going for more and more, really trying to perceive deeper, finer, more intense vibrations. This became annoying. I realized That there was suffering in the search and started tuning in to the movements of attention itself.

I felt the sense of a center point flit around in the sense field for awhile and eventually I started to relax more and allow things to deepen but without losing concentration. Then The vibrations faded a bit, but an interesting thing happened. My head began to feel big and expansive like it was merging with space. There was very subtle tingling on the crown of my head as I noticed that there seemed to be a feeling of tension there related to the act of seeking.

It felt as if some sort of expansive spacious energy was trying to escape out of the top of my head but was being blocked by that tension. the crown of my head felt like a cone-shaped funnel with the small opening closed. Somehow I was able to completely relax the tension. Then the "hole" in the "funnel" opened and the funnel opened up to a wide mouth tube and merged with all of space as the "energy" expanded out.

All seeking completely ceased and there was a moment of total peace and understanding(I'm having a hard time being more specific). It felt empty and selfless. I felt like the process of perfecting mindfulness in the 11 Nyana was complete in that moment of total surrender.

Then I closed my eyes and there was a very quick dip in attention. It almost felt like nodding off to sleep, but was faster than that sort of thing usually is for me.

On the backside of it I immediately thought "oh I fell asleep for hals a second, oops" I checked back in with the Vibrations and they became intense like before but I let go of them quickly because I wasn't interested in them anymore. I felt like I had finished something and the feeling of seeking diminished considerably. For a while afterwards There was a huge reduction of basic suffering and tension and it seemed strange to me that I had ever had any problems with anything.

...

I'm trying to repeat the event but haven't yet. I'm not sure if a permanent shift occured, but motivation for practice is different. I've been feeling more and more like I can "let vipassana happen."

My energy is very low right now because I am dealing with some pretty deep winter depression. In the past it has been bad enough to have a seriously negative impact on my ability to function. In fact, this is the first time in at least a decade that I haven't had some significant breakdown as the winter came on.

I think that's somewhat due to the fact that I'm not stuck in the Dark Night half of the time and freaking out like I was before I started meditationg and getting past it so that my new baseline or center of gravity was EQ. I'm not happy, but I'm OK with that in a way that I haven't been before.

Anyway, I'm not really sure what else to say.

What do you all think?

I plan on logging a few practice sessions in the next week or so to give updates on my progress.

RE: Unknowing Event in High Equanimity. Seeking has diminished.
Answer
12/21/12 8:29 PM as a reply to ND.
Also, soft Jhanas are accessible after a few minutes of practice in a quiet space. I think I developed the Jhanas in a soft form up to the fourth a few days before the event explained above.

RE: Unknowing Event in High Equanimity. Seeking has diminished.
equanimity & fourth vipassana jhana chakras
Answer
12/26/12 10:06 PM as a reply to ND.
Today I had an experience similar to what I described before, but without the unknowing event. I did shamatha for about fifteen minutes and entered and exited the First Jhana in soft form a few times. Then, later in the day, I noticed the panoramic vibratory stuff and decided to take my lunch break and use it for insight practice.

I dropped right into High Equanimity by entering choiceless awareness. The sense field progressively dissolved over about twenty minutes. The vibrations became finer and appeared in higher resolution, by which I mean there were more of them. I suppose a better way of saying that is that the impermanent quality of the sense field became more complete as I noticed more and more tingles evenly spread throughout space. This was especially true in the visual and somatic fields.

As I became more concentrated(Kanika Samadhi?), I felt a pleasurable pressure in the front of my head in and around the area of my third eye. The feeling of pressure gently rose to the crown of my head. As it did, it became subtler and the area of activity shrank. It was a feeling similar to what I described in the first post, except the transition from the third eye to the crown, which I will call the 6th and 7th Chakras, was clearer and more fluid.

I felt the sense of expansive openness again as the vibrations, which where still perceived, faded a bit. I could still feel the "suchness tingles", but now the empty, open, expansive feeling was the predominant quality of experience. I think what happened is that I was shifting from feeing impernanence to Anatta, the No/Non-self characteristic, and seeing that panoramically like the vibrations.

Then I tried to balance the two qualities. I noticed that If I shifted back to only the impermanence characteristic, the pressure returned to the 6th Chakra in a way that felt somehow like regression. So, I'm not quite sure how to describe this, but I "ascended" back up to the 7th Chakra and then sort of tried to bring the awareness of tingling, fluxing impermanence "up" to that level so that the impermanence and selflessness could be perceived equally in a balanced, panoramic, clear, and complete way.

Then I noticed something like big waves of sensation, like the vibrations were lining up so tat the whole sense field throbbed a few times. Things didn't sync up totally as waves of integrated space like I think I heard Daniel describe in one of the cheetah house videos, but it was like I managed to watch all of experience undulate a few times. It only happened like four times though and I didn't manage to experience it again.

Then I noticed that my break was almost over and I got really sleepy. I had a moment of almost nodding off, but I stopped myself. I think the last time this happened the unknowing event I had was probably just me falling asleep for a split second.

The session was over, so I returned to work and went about my day with a boosted sense of wellbeing. I was more equanimous and my body felt more energetically balanced.

These expereinces seem to arise more automatically and then take less effort to mature when I do concentration practices. Even though I was doing Shamatha like three hours before the experience described above, I think that pumping my relatively weak concentration abilities somehow made that experience more likely to just happen naturally.

Also, both times thing Chakra thing has happened I've ended up feeling sleepy towards the end of the practice session. This is less than ideal, because not only do I need to stay alert to notice what's happening, I also need to keep my eyes open to watch for any discontinuities of experience which could be Fruitions and differentiate them from just quickly nodding off or any other sort of unknowing event.

SO,

A). I'm going to put more energy into developming my Jhanic abilities, and B ). I'm going to take better care of my body so that I have more energy and I'm not so sleepy at times when I want to practice

If I fully apply myself, I know that I can do this. The issue is learning to make effort equanimous so that I'm not backsliding by craving and grasping results of disciplined practice. I'm going on retreat as soon as possible, unfortunately that won't be for a while, so I will continue the "wearing down the hill" approach and allow EQ to gradually mature and then nail it on a Goenka retreat this Spring/Summer.

RE: Unknowing Event in High Equanimity. Seeking has diminished.
Answer
12/26/12 10:22 PM as a reply to ND.
I will be turning this thread into a Stream Entry Pratice log and posting updates here:

Hi-EQ, unknowing events, and Chakra activity