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Please help with this?
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3/23/10 8:31 AM
Hi, can anyone explain how to recognise the psychic realm. I have been shifting through the jhanas and doing insight practise but i am starting to become a bit fearful of entering this state without knowing what to expect. I do not plan on investigating this realm at this point in time but i would like to know its nature and the tell tale signs of when i am in it. It is begining to distract me as i am becoming vigilant of when i (might)be in it rather than letting go and being watchful. I would be very grateful for any help with this. Thankyou

RE: Please help with this?
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3/23/10 10:15 AM as a reply to zim zim.
zim zim:
I have been shifting through the jhanas and doing insight practise but i am starting to become a bit fearful of entering this state without knowing what to expect.... It is begining to distract me as i am becoming vigilant of when i (might)be in it rather than letting go and being watchful.


You are slipping into content around the fear sensations. Pay close attention to how the fear is presenting itself. Thoughts? Sensations? Look at this very carefully both spatially (within the body) and causally (when this happens, that happens). Is it pleasant or unpleasant? How does it arise? Does it pass?

-Chuck

RE: Please help with this?
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3/25/10 2:33 AM as a reply to zim zim.
When you say psychic realm, what do you have in mind?

It could be argued that any dream is the psychic realm, as well as possibly any vision, any auditory thing that manifests that others's don't hear, and possibly anything related to energy body stuff. It could be argued that thoughts occupy that realm also.

Regardless, what are your expectations, desires, wants and needs in this regard? What practical benefit are you looking for?

If you really want to get into interesting territory, strong concentration skills always help, as do resolutions and practices that are more inclined to produce interesting effects, such as mantras and visualization practices.

Helpful?

Daniel

RE: Please help with this?
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3/25/10 7:08 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Hi,Ok i will try and put my point across more clearly.Its like guitar theory with me. Not so good with the theory but on the other hand produce interesting results in writing music that theory wouldnt have agreed with. I know the theory in this domain wont come overnight but i am learning at my own pace. Lasy week i experienced seeing my hands at close range through my eyelids and im under the impression that this is of the powers? Now that i have no problem with but what i do have a problem with is carrying my external misgivings into state of powers and unintentionally damage my progress or without knowing,manipulate my external life. My intentions are not to meddle with the powers as i feel strongly against doing so but in giving this much thought recently it seems i have developed aversion to it and it is distracting me. When shifting through concentration states i am now in doubt to wether i am in Jhana or in the state of the powers and i am unsure how to recognise which is which. I am getting into concentration states relatively quickly now and am moving into insight territory but my only snag is not undertanding the nature of the powers and my reluctance to investigate. One more thing. The more i reveal whilst in meditation the more seems to be asked of me of morality in my external life. It really is motivating me to break down more and more of my own stuff and consider my relationship to others with more clarity,however certain things i thought i had dealt with in the past are back with a vengeance and are almost brand new in their potency.Is that the norm? Hope i made my point there about the powers and i apologise for drifting at the end there. Been a rollercoaster few weeks for me. Plenty of highs and a few lows thrown in there also.

RE: Please help with this?
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3/25/10 2:44 PM as a reply to zim zim.
zim zim:
The more i reveal whilst in meditation the more seems to be asked of me of morality in my external life. It really is motivating me to break down more and more of my own stuff and consider my relationship to others with more clarity,however certain things i thought i had dealt with in the past are back with a vengeance and are almost brand new in their potency.Is that the norm?

Yep, definitely normal. That kind of stuff happens a lot in the dark night. It can happen at other times, but it's pretty typical of post A&P time, which is pretty likely for you given all this thought about and experience with the powers. It's perfectly fine that this occurs, as long as you stay firm in resolving not to get caught up in all of the "stuff." Just like the powers, psychological "stuff" is not bad or wrong, but it's not useful to dwell on these during the dark night. The four Right Efforts are really important for managing this type of occurrence. I'm sure you already know them, but I like repeating them -- skillful effort at abandoning unhelpful mindstates that exist, skillful effort at preventing unhelpful mindstates from arising, skillful effort at causing helpful mindstates to arise, and skillful effort at maintaining helpful mindstates.

The four Right Efforts apply to each of the Three Trainings, but they apply differently to each one of them. For example, in everyday life or morality, this may look like cognitive restructuring to help you be more productive and compassionate and happy. In bare concentration practice, it might be abandoning any attention to things other than your meditation object. For insight, it's avoiding any involvement with content, and directing the mind to observing the three characteristics in some way (noting, choiceless awareness, jhana-based insight, etc.).

If you find yourself ruminating about thoughts that are bothering you, then you can improve your handling of them in several skillful ways. During formal insight meditation, of course, it's always helpful to bump up to the bare sensate level and stay out of content altogether. Your concentration skills appear to be great, so it shouldn't be hard for you to stay out of content during insight meditation. Just keep up the energy of your three characteristics investigation so that you get the most benefit from your concentration ability.

Off the cushion, you can just give bare attention to the thoughts, noticing that they aren't skillful but not judging them or getting involved. You can choose to redirect your mind to new thoughts. You have to actually pick specific new thoughts to stay with -- it won't work if you decide to NOT think about something. So pick something skillful that you DO choose to think about, and stay with that. You could also just do some pure concentration practice, which can be like hitting the reset button on your mind.

In terms of your new involvement with sila -- great! In some ways, sila really is where it's at. All that is required to keep this skillful is to avoid -- you guessed it -- rumination on content! If you're unsure what to do about a problem/situation, then you might try and stick with simple solutions involving increasing the amount of skillfully compassionate actions and thoughts for yourself and others in your actions. This is one way to avoid insight bleedthrough.

Hope i made my point there about the powers and i apologise for drifting at the end there. Been a rollercoaster few weeks for me. Plenty of highs and a few lows thrown in there also.

Heh, welcome to insight! Crazy ride. Gonna be soooo worth it!

RE: Please help with this?
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3/26/10 8:53 AM as a reply to J Adam G.
J Adam G, I couldnt have asked for more from your answer,tips,thoughts and advice on this matter.I have benefited from your experience and want to thank you. Thankyou

RE: Please help with this?
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3/27/10 12:09 AM as a reply to zim zim.
As an aside:

Seeing through closed eyelids: nearly always A&P.

Interest in the powers: usually A&P, occasionally happens in High Equanimity, though may have a different feel.