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Dukkha Door Question

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Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/7/13 8:13 AM
I remember reading somewhere a while back that to get a dukkha door fruition one had to go deep into jhana and then "get the door slammed from behind" or something along those lines.

I think I have been able to recognize impermanence and non-self fruitions in my practice, but feel fairly certain I have never experienced a clear dukkha fruition with clean set-up, entry, and all that jazz.

So, the question is, how do you successfully engage with dukkha and "go deep into jhana" investigating suffering when you have the apprehension that you are going to get violated somehow and are therefore tense and anxious?

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/7/13 9:51 AM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
My own path is primarily through dukhha, but I don't know what you mean by "the door slammed from behind," I don't regard the jhana involved as particularly deep, and I don't feel anxiety about a sense of violation, though there is often anxiety. "The door slammed behind" and "sense of violation" suggest a subject/object duality which is incongruent with my understanding of fruition. Do you have any more details about how the dukkha practice you're referring to is supposed to go? It's intriguing.

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/7/13 11:03 AM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
First of all, you need tons & tons of concentration to notice the fruition door accurately. Then, which door presents is a matter of what aspect you are focusing on predominantly. If you're focusing on unsatisfactoriness predominantly, then you'll go through the unsatisfactoriness door. If on impermanence, then impermanence. The doors always happen with a pair of characteristics, though, so maybe that's what you're missing. Try focusing on unsatisfactoriness mainly, and not-me secondly, for example. Then you'll get this weird toroid thing happening. Maybe you're being stuck with anxiety because you're not also dissociating from it at the same time.

The gist of this is also that if you've experienced a fruition through one of the other doors, you've likely experienced one with the unsatisfactoriness aspect being secondary, unless you happen to have only experienced impermanence/not-me or not-me/impermanence ones.

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/7/13 11:40 AM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
Last night as I was going to sleep I had a bunch of mini panic attacks where I feel this fear of being sucked into an unpleasant place. I have had things along these lines fairly before as well.

I could name many of these experiences, but they have involved me running through the house screaming, scrambling out of my room on all fours with all my covers on, and other things.

During the day for many weeks now, I always take little "almost naps" and right as I am on the verge of hitting the sleep wall I will hit something unpleasant and I spring instantly awake.

Last night I hit one of these right as I was in the dreaming/awake borderline. I have these dreams that seem real enough that they often present as kind of alternative versions of my life. Well I was dreaming that for some reason I had taken one of my friends girlfriends out on a date and right as I was kissing her I hit something that felt like suffering and I woke up and saw the ceiling kind of distort like someone throwing a rock into a pond.

What I have thought of as non-self fruitions occur when I notice some non-conceptual space that I am looking at and it collapses.

What I have thought of as impermanence fruition are when I notice some kind of movement such as a bird flying and I see a clear discontinuity.


It could be that I have yet to really have a fruition and these things are not what I think they are.

As far as the Torrid thing goes, I had a really traumatic dmt trip that started my spiritual path and I had a horrible experience of some kind of thing that seemed like it was looping endlessly, like I had died and been reborn in hell for an incalculable time.

I also had a bad experience last fall on bi-polar meds where I basically couldn't swallow and felt like I was slipping into a void (in a bad way). I was running around the room just in complete misery and eventually was able to lie down and calm down until I literally blacked out (happened twice).

Both of these experiences have left a very bad taste in my mouth for formal meditation practice, and yet I have continued to do it. This morning I felt so bad that I vowed I will not practice any more. Rest = fine. Meditation = miserable. Walks either feel like I have transcended into some other realm, or I scream at people (usually those associated with Buddhism) in my head.

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/7/13 11:52 AM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
A D R:
This morning I felt so bad that I vowed I will not practice any more. Rest = fine. Meditation = miserable


This is not a good basis for insight meditation. Do Shamatha for the time being and forget about the doors. Any door is going to look like a demon in your current state of mind.

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/7/13 5:57 PM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
It could be that I have yet to really have a fruition and these things are not what I think they are.


Although fruitions do vary in levels of clarity, if you are getting fruitions on, at least, a semi-regular basis, you would definitely know that they were fruitions and, for some of them, there would be no doubt about it. I don't sit much, as of this year, and haven't had a good strong dukkha fruition in quite some time, but the first time I had a strong one it was pretty obvious: I was laying in bed and made a mental resolve to have a fruition that lasted for 5 minutes. Several moments later I was hit with a strong burst of fear and reality disappeared (like it was being torn away) and then re-appeared after a complete experiential discontinuity with this sense of: "holy shit that was scary"

A dukkha door fruition would differ from the fear nana or a "panic attack" in that there is a sense of reality being ripped away along with an experiential discontinuity or gap.

With subsequent practice, I now rarely get frutiions through the dukkha door. Right now I don't sit, so I don't get fruitions that often (maybe once a month or 2.5-3.5 weeks), but when I do get them they are now almost always through the impermanence or no-self door or a combination of those.

What I have thought of as impermanence fruition are when I notice some kind of movement such as a bird flying and I see a clear discontinuity.


If it is a fruition, then "I" wouldn't "see" anything. There is no discontinuity to "see," but a discontinuity is inferred from the entrance and exit. Similarly when undergoing general anesthesia, blacking out drinking, or extremely deep dreamless sleep a discontinuity is inferred from an experiential gap.

Last night as I was going to sleep I had a bunch of mini panic attacks where I feel this fear of being sucked into an unpleasant place. I have had things along these lines fairly before as well.


This sounds like the fear nana, not a dukkha fruition. Often the fear nana will manifest this way for me as well, another common occurrence is there is a strong "feeling of being watched." Since I stopped sitting I don't really experience nana cycling much when I'm awake, but it still seems to occur fairly strong when dreaming sometimes.

I also had a bad experience last fall on bi-polar meds where I basically couldn't swallow and felt like I was slipping into a void (in a bad way). I was running around the room just in complete misery and eventually was able to lie down and calm down until I literally blacked out (happened twice).


This sounds like drug-induced akathisia. Drug-induced akathisia is completely different (and far more unpleasant) than dark night symptoms or dukkha fruitions. In my experience, choosing a drug with a lower incidence of akathisia or taking some niacinamide and large doses of Vitamin C will alleviate this when it occurs. Avoid overdoing the niacinamide as it does alleviate anxiety, but also could potentially cause a temporary depression.

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/7/13 6:51 PM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
A D R:

During the day for many weeks now, I always take little "almost naps" and right as I am on the verge of hitting the sleep wall I will hit something unpleasant and I spring instantly awake.
.

I used to do this all the time on purpose...fade off into dreamtime and right at transition go past a "door" and then notice it...stop and jump thru it and snap back awake with a bliss wave following. I liked it and it would sometimes get annoying at night when wanted to just go to sleep...I would jump thru due to the practice and be wide awake for a bit....but my superpower is sleeping so I would drift off soon. As I moved on I found that the door isn't there or not noticeable anymore even though I transition back and forth between dreamtime and meditating a lot now days.
See if it is really unpleasant or if you're projecting unpleasantness on it due to the abrupt transition. Maybe do it on purpose and see what happens.
Good luck,
~D

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/15/13 4:44 PM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
Question:

I have noticed in my practice and daily life that I have the tendency to "cringe up" at certain points, like I am trying to either fabricate or mask this little "cracks in the self."

When I am relaxed and in what I call dissolution I can notice a little more about the characteristics of these little fissures. One is that if I pass over one of these things (and almost fall in, although just recently it was more common that I would freak and bolt up) it tends to chill my mind out quite a bit. Its almost like someone pulled the plug on me and my mind feels kind of helpless and sluggish (its kind of like a silent, fearful calm) for the moment and a bit afterward (kind of like a depression, but not 100% bad).

In other times walking around if I am tensing up it seems like all the tension is wearing me out and this "wearing out" I think brings up an anxiety to need to go sit or something similar.


Would anyone be willing to explain what this phenomenon is?

I don't know if I actually have the ability to do this or not (it could be that I am just running on auto pilot), but during times down in dissolution, etc where I am relaxed and sleepy should I try to slip into one of these cracks? Or should I try to avoid them and rev up energy, etc? Like I said I a little above, normally I would just pop out of such states so this is kind of new for me.

Just looking for clues here. I guess that I might figure it out eventually but thought I would ask anyway.

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/16/13 2:25 PM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
From the Access to Insight page:

Once the Exalted One spoke to the Venerable Maha-Moggallana thus: "Are you drowsy, Moggallana? Are you drowsy, Moggallana?" — "Yes, venerable sir."

(1) "Well then, Moggallana, at whatever thought torpor has befallen you, to that thought you should not give attention, you should not dwell on it frequently. Then it is possible that, by so doing, torpor will disappear.

(2) "But if, by so doing, that torpor does not disappear, you should think and reflect within your mind about the Dhamma as you have heard and learned it, and you should mentally review it. Then it is possible that, by so doing, torpor will disappear.

(3) "But if, by so doing, that torpor does not disappear, you should learn by heart the Dhamma in its fullness, as you have heard and learned it. Then it is possible...

(4) "But if, by so doing, that torpor does not disappear, you should shake your ears, and rub your limbs with the palm of your hand. Then it is possible...

(5) "But if, by so doing, that torpor does not disappear, you should get up from your seat, and after washing your eyes with water, you should look around in all directions and look upwards to the stars in the sky. Then it is possible...

(6) "But if, by so doing, that torpor does not disappear, you should firmly establish the (inner) perception of light: as it is by day, so also by night; as it is by night, so also by day. Thus with a mind clear and unobstructed, you should develop a consciousness which is full of brightness. Then it is possible...

(7) "But if, by so doing, that torpor does not disappear, you should, conscious of that which is before and behind, walk up and down, with your senses turned inwards, with your mind not going outwards. Then it is possible...

(8) "But if, by so doing, that torpor does not disappear, you may lie down on your right side, taking up the lion's posture, covering foot with foot — mindful, clearly conscious, keeping in mind the thought of rising. Having awakened again, you should quickly rise, thinking: 'I won't indulge in the enjoyment of lying down and reclining, in the enjoyment of sleep!'

"Thus, Moggallana, you should train yourself!"

— AN 7:58


Something I found relevant and helpful on the matter.

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/16/13 3:48 PM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
Another question would be:

Am I cheating myself out of faster insight progress because I assume that when 8:30 P.M. rolls around that I have done enough and that I should go ahead and trance up into sleep mode (its kind of painful). Pushing on would also be painful but that pain would be worth it if I knew I was actually getting somewhere. I guess its maybe a lack of faith, or the presence of sanity?

Would it be better to keep applying the Buddha's instructions till I literally fall asleep involuntarily? I know that this might be pushing the envelope a bit but I am kind of tired of this attitude that "tomorrow is disgust day, then the day after that is desire for deliverance...so yea it looks like about the weekend might not be so shitty cause I might hit high mastery or even high eq then." And then I get there and the whole thing starts over..."just X more days and I will get another shot at happiness."

This is something I have always wondered but have been a bit afraid to ask.

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/16/13 5:06 PM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
A D R:
Another question would be:

Am I cheating myself out of faster insight progress because I assume that when 8:30 P.M. rolls around that I have done enough and that I should go ahead and trance up into sleep mode (its kind of painful). Pushing on would also be painful but that pain would be worth it if I knew I was actually getting somewhere. I guess its maybe a lack of faith, or the presence of sanity?

Would it be better to keep applying the Buddha's instructions till I literally fall asleep involuntarily? I know that this might be pushing the envelope a bit but I am kind of tired of this attitude that "tomorrow is disgust day, then the day after that is desire for deliverance...so yea it looks like about the weekend might not be so shitty cause I might hit high mastery or even high eq then." And then I get there and the whole thing starts over..."just X more days and I will get another shot at happiness."

This is something I have always wondered but have been a bit afraid to ask.


Well, I don't have a job, don't have a life. I don't have anything to lose really. SO.....


I will take up the sitter's practice!!! Yee-Haw! emoticon

Gonna drop down and hit the substrate consciousness baby! I am tired of being a self-defeatist!

Told my parents and they are all right with it. So gonna give it at least 24 hours and see how it goes.

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/16/13 10:13 PM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
ADR - my advice is this: know exactly what it is you want (eg. a job, self-acceptance, love, peace).

When you know what it is, state it over and over as a strong desire and intention.

Then either -

1) Understand that there isn't a single thing you can do to achieve it or...
2) Vow not to make the slightest effort to achieve it

This sends a very strong message to your subconscious.

The thing you want (whatever it is) will come to you.

I know what you mean about Buddhists - 99% of them are wankers who use the religion as a fashion accessory or ego-enhancer.

Hit the substrate or live life? Easy choice. Don't cloister yourself. The reason you have made this choice is that once again, you have bought into the belief that you cannot succeed at life (job, love, peace).

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/16/13 11:30 PM as a reply to This Good Self.
I won't be able to live life to the fullest until I break through to the substrate consciousness. So I am going for it. Tired of living and acting like the living dead. emoticonemoticon

RE: Dukkha Door Question
Answer
6/17/13 2:14 AM as a reply to Sleeping Buddha Syndrome.
A D R:
I won't be able to live life to the fullest until I break through to the substrate consciousness. So I am going for it. Tired of living and acting like the living dead. emoticonemoticon


But it looks like Mara is going to win this round. Ascetic mode off.