Message Boards Message Boards

Toggle
Third
Answer
10/30/13 5:59 PM
Relatively speaking, relatively speaking, this is the peace which passeth all understanding.

My 15 year struggle with chronic treatment resistant suicidal depression seems to have just turned a corner!!!

I have no idea anymore what's inside 'me' and what's outside 'me'.

I couldn't even begin to thank you guys. and Daniel. Daniel. I know you were standing on that Sayadaw's shoulders. But Daniel....

Is Katy on the path?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0BWlvnBmIE

[for the sake of balance, first-path review nearly saw me headed for a padded cell]

XX

RE: Third
Answer
10/31/13 12:49 PM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Robin Woods:
My 15 year struggle with chronic treatment resistant suicidal depression seems to have just turned a corner!!!

I have no idea anymore what's inside 'me' and what's outside 'me'.

Congratulations! I'm happy for you.

But what has changed that you are able to make this statement?

Just curious. I've been there and done that also. So, I'm interested to learn about your perceptions of this. That's all.

Are you able to articulate about the process you've been through that has allowed you to express this?

I ask this because if you are not aware of that process, then you are just as much in the dark as you were before, with the future possibility of returning to that dark place again if you aren't careful.

Someone who has broken the chain of rebirths should be able to express how they know that, wouldn't you think (even though it may not make much sense to those who have not accomplished such, to those who have it will make sense).

RE: Third
Answer
10/31/13 2:44 PM as a reply to Ian And.
Oh Christ- I've really got myself into some hot water now with my stupid claims to 'attainments'...

How do I know? Because 'I'm' already dead?

When I close my eyes now and there's silence, or birdsong, and I become the silence or birdsong, when I die - to the extent to which I've reidentified with the silence or birdsong - 'I' don't die?

I hope I'm vaguely on the right tracks. I still have enough of an ego - even under a pseudonym- not to want to appear too foolish on the internets. ;)

Take it easy on me. I was just a desperate person who felt he had no other options.

Xx

RE: Third
Answer
10/31/13 4:46 PM as a reply to Ian And.
Or to try and put it another way, it kinda just feels like being an animal without a concept of self getting in the way nearly so much?

RE: Third
Answer
11/1/13 2:12 AM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Robin Woods:
Oh Christ- I've really got myself into some hot water now with my stupid claims to 'attainments'...

How do I know? Because 'I'm' already dead? ...

Take it easy on me. I was just a desperate person who felt he had no other options.

Relax. You're not in hot water "with claims to attainments." Only you know what you've achieved, no matter what anyone else thinks. (Besides, my question was not meant as anything other than a simple inquiry about your perception of what it is that you have, in your mind, achieved. I'm not here to judge. Only to help you clarify your perception and view.)

Robin Woods:

When I close my eyes now and there's silence, or birdsong, and I become the silence or birdsong, when I die - to the extent to which I've re-identified with the silence or birdsong - 'I' don't die?

I hope I'm vaguely on the right tracks. I still have enough of an ego - even under a pseudonym- not to want to appear too foolish on the internets. ;)

Or to try and put it another way, it kinda just feels like being an animal without a concept of self getting in the way nearly so much?

Okay. These two examples are a good start. And you are "vaguely on the right track."

However, in order to be clear about what you are aiming to achieve, it would be helpful if you were able to SEE the process involved which allows you to make the statement. Being able to see this process is also a part of what is meant by the term "self realization." To realize the process by which you create "a self" which you take (or perceive) to belong to an "I."

I take it from your descriptions that you have not yet "seen the process" that your mind undergoes (such that you are able to resist it) which would have you identifying it (yourself) with a self that is at root the cause of dukkha.

What I'm saying is, what you have described as having achieved is fine in its own right. It is a very significant achievement. But it doesn't indicate evidence of gnosis or knowingness about the potential source of a person's struggle to alleviate dukkha. Once you attain that gnosis (or inner understanding), you will have severed the ties between this world and personal ignorance about/of this world. It is that ignorance that I am endeavoring to help you understand and to see.

Now that you are able to achieve "silence" when you meditate (the mind is not constantly self-identifying itself over against other phenomena), you would be well served to take up a study and practice of satipatthana in order to solidify this most recent realization that you have accomplished. Doing so will only assist you in deepening your realization to the point of making it an established viewpoint, thereby crushing dukkha once and for all.

In practicing satipatthana, you will confront the body or form (rupa), feeling (vedana), mind states (cittanupassana), and mind objects or mind phenomena (dhammas). Nupassana refers to "contemplation of." Therefore, cittanupassana is contemplation of states of mind such as lust (raga), anger (dosa), and delusion (moha).

Ven. Analayo describes this in his book Satipatthana, The Direct Path to Self Realization, in this way:

Analayo:
It is noteworthy that contemplation of the mind does not involve active measures to oppose unwholesome states of mind (such as lust or anger). Rather, the task of mindfulness is to remain receptively aware by clearly recognizing the state of mind that underlies a particular train of thoughts or reactions. Such uninvolved receptivity is required because of one's instinctive tendency to ignore whatever contradicts or threatens one's sense of importance and personal integrity. The habit of employing self-deception to maintain one's self esteem has often become so ingrained that the first step to developing accurate self-awareness is honest acknowledgement of the existence of hidden emotions, motives, and tendencies in the mind, without immediately suppressing them. Maintaining non-reactive awareness in this way counters the impulse towards either reaction or suppression contained in unwholesome states of mind, and thereby deactivates their emotional and attentional pull.[7]

Footnote:
[7] Newman 1996: pp. 35 and 46. Cf. also A V 39, which explains that while unwholesome conduct by way of body or speech is to be overcome by adopting more appropriate ways of conduct, the proper approach for overcoming mental defilements is repeated wise observation. A clinical case supporting the ingenuity of this approach is documented by Deatherage 1975: p. 140, where a twenty-three-year-old male, hospitalized for extreme periodic aggressiveness and alcohol abuse, was cured within eight weeks simply by being taught to recognize and mentally name the emotions he experienced, without even knowing that what he was doing was related to "meditation." ...

Take a look at his book and see what you think. It should help you begin to put many things together in your mind about what it is that you are doing and practicing.

RE: Third
Answer
11/1/13 7:45 AM as a reply to Ian And.
Thanks Ian. I'm looking forward to studying what you wrote this weekend with care. I'm woefully ignorant of Buddhism. I just found that the noting practice temporarily stopped me suffering. So I persisted with it. Hour after hour after hour. Probably didn't even understand the implications of what I was doing.

Just out of interest, what do you think happens when our bodies die? The only thought which causes me trouble at the moment is the very paranoid one(!!!) that this mindfulness is tampering with with Nature/God in some fundamental way and that it will result in some kind of 'punishment' after death. That Vipassana is a kind of Promethean arrogance and not to accept the 'normal' beer and titties pleasures of this world is to overreach oneself - which might lead to 'Hell'?

I did warn you I was crazy! ;-)

RE: Third
Answer
11/1/13 1:37 PM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Robin Woods:
Thanks Ian. I'm looking forward to studying what you wrote this weekend with care. I'm woefully ignorant of Buddhism. I just found that the noting practice temporarily stopped me suffering. So I persisted with it. Hour after hour after hour. Probably didn't even understand the implications of what I was doing.

Robin: "I'm woefully ignorant of Buddhism [i.e. the Dhamma]." Oh my. That's what I was afraid of. The good news is: this is a fixable deficiency. It just takes time and a dedication to practice and to learning everything you can about how your mind works and processes information.

Robin: "Probably didn't even understand the implications of what I was doing." Yes, you're not alone in this. Because of the questionable way in which much of this material has been taught in the past extending to the present, practitioners are not fully aware of what it is that they should be seeking to learn. There is no shortcut to learning about the Dhamma except to take it one step at a time. And after a period of time practicing and studying this, the concepts begin to fall into place within the mind and a realization occurs which is nothing short of profound! When this realization occurs, you WILL know it! And what is more, you will know that you are free of the causes of dukkha (including mental dis-eases such as depression) forever.

By the way, here is a link to Analayo's book in PDF format (1.2 Mb) that you can download and read: Satipattana, The Direct Path to Realization. There's a lot in this that presumes a reader's familiarity with the Dhamma, so take it slow and easy and look up any concept that you are unfamiliar with in order to become clear about its importance to your understanding.


Robin Woods:

Just out of interest, what do you think happens when our bodies die? The only thought which causes me trouble at the moment is the very paranoid one(!!!) that this mindfulness is tampering with with Nature/God in some fundamental way and that it will result in some kind of 'punishment' after death. That Vipassana is a kind of Promethean arrogance and not to accept the 'normal' beer and titties pleasures of this world is to overreach oneself - which might lead to 'Hell'?

I did warn you I was crazy! ;-)

Robin: "Just out of interest, what do you think happens when our bodies die?" If you had had an opportunity to read the discourses (MN 72, for instance), you would know how Gotama answered such questions when he was asked. Many of these kinds of questions are answered in the discourses if people will just bother to read them. To speculate about that which one is uncertain of is to become involved in a thicket of views. That thicket of views can take one down many pathways, each one of which, out of fear, may lead to a falsehood and thereby be deceptive.

When the body dies, the body dies. Awareness remains. What happens when you fall asleep at night each night? Is not your awareness of the body dropped? I am reminded by a quotation from Master Po in the television series "Kung Fu," who said: "Is your mind not free to seek its own course, to soar even to the heavens though you turn and spin within a prison [of the body]." Stop and think about that the next time you are troubled by a vexing thought. What is it that hinders one from seeking satisfaction (the release of dukkha)? Answer: None other than oneself!

Robin: "I did warn you I was crazy!" Not crazy, just deluded. There's a difference. Delusion is easily cured by exposure to and realization of that which is true. Therefore, it is necessary to know that delusion can be (and ought to be) let go of. This is what the Dhamma teaches. Freedom from greed, anger and delusion. Is this not something that everyone seeks to achieve?

Robin: "...that this mindfulness is tampering with with Nature/God in some fundamental way and that it will result in some kind of 'punishment' after death." Those of us who grew up in the West and were raised with the fire and brimstone version of Christianity forced down our throats by do-gooder, well-intentioned people in our lives have been suffering under this psychological ball and chain most of our lives. Yet, when one stops to take a step back and examine this paradigm, one finds that it is based upon a premise that, if it were true, would be contradictory of the whole of the teaching of Christianity.

Consider the wisdom of Master Po once again who said: "When the tiger and the man are two, he [the man] may die. Yet when the tiger and the man are one there is no fear, there is no danger. For what creature, one with all nature, will attack itself?" He prefaced this with the following: "When the heart knows no danger, no danger exists. When the soul becomes the warrior, all fear melts. That prevails which refuses to know the power of the other. Where fear is, does not danger also live. Where fear is not, does not danger also die."

What Master Po is pointing at are phantoms created within the mind. Phantoms that have no other existence than that they were created in the mind of the observer. When you know the truth, phantoms cannot invade your thought to distract you from what is true.

One last thought from Master Po to leave you with in regard to this view you have been incubating about mindfulness:

"Seek always peace. Wear no path for the footsteps of others, unless the soul is endangered. We are all linked by our souls. To endanger one endangers all."
His use of the word "soul" is unfortunate (as far as the Dhamma understands this in relation to a permanent "self" or "soul" of which none can be found). Perhaps a better word might have been "spirit" (which if you bother to look it up in a dictionary, relates to the breath; and how synchronistic is that, as in "mindfulness of the breath" or anapanasati).

spirit - [L. spiritus, breath, courage, vigor, the soul, life, in LL(Ec), spirit < spirare to blow, breath ...] 1 a) the life principle, esp. in human beings, originally regarded as inherent in the breath or as infused by a deity. b) soul (sense 1).

RE: Third
Answer
4/21/14 5:50 AM as a reply to Ian And.
Losing Control?:

Alright guys, I just wondered if you might help me out briefly again....

It's been apparent to me for a while that certain processes such as coughing and sneezing are not-self because 'I' don't consciously initiate them. In the same way 'I' don't grow my hair or beat my heart.

However, it's starting to become apparent in daily life that there are all kinds of habitual processes that I do - such as rubbing my face, itching my back, smoking, pulling up my trousers, turning over in bed etc - which seem to just happen by themselves. I don't choose to do them - or not - I just find myself in the middle of them happening.

This is a sign of 'progress' right? This is what's meant by a 'natural unfolding'? What should I look for losing control of next? Is there any way to particularly work with this in daily life beyond just trying to keep up the mindfulness and noticing it happening?

I definitely didn't realize I'd end up losing my sense of free will when I signed up to my first MBSR course!

RE: Third
Answer
4/21/14 8:07 AM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Losing your sense of free will or your sense of a 'you' that owns intentions?

Phenomena influence each other in a web of interdependance, right?

Intentions are phenomena that have an awareness or understanding of this mutual influence built in, far as I can tell. They are still impermanent, empty of self, not owned by a self, and clinging to/resisting them as if they were permanent or i, me or mine sure is dukkha. But no need to intellectualize about free will vs. determinism, which again far as i can tell is more speculative and metaphysical than experiential. I am not sure that has anything to do with meditative insight so much as our current mainstream culture in the West.

That said, sure, everything can be seen in that light of happening on its own if there is clear seeing. If you investigate the causes and conditions that lead to more stable, deep, spontaneous and bright clear seeing then you will likely experience more moments in which the spontaneity and selflessness of phenomena is evident. That's a natural part of the process for sure. Just wanted to point out that we don't have to pin it down intellectually as free will vs. determinism. I notice that sometimes tends to lead to doubts and/or overcertainty; also, confusing dissociation and depersonalization with insight into emptiness (they are two very different things in my opinion.....). Just my two cents however.

RE: Third
Answer
4/22/14 4:50 AM as a reply to . Jake ..
Thanks Jake. Yes - I think I understand what you're saying. I guess I was a bit worried that it might be depersonalization rather than insight but it feels natural and surely represents a higher level of self-awareness into things I wasn't even conscious were happening previously....

RE: Third
Answer
4/23/14 11:58 AM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Cool; then I would say trust your experience and the process. The deeper we let go into emptiness is the easier it should be to feel spontaneous joy and to engage in wholesome and beneficial actions. I know this is kind of a mahayana cliche and yet, it is really IME helpful for differentiating between authentic insight on the one hand and depersonalization or even a one sided, intellectual insight on the other. True insight should be a whole-being affair involving mind, body, heart, relationships.... Or at least there's another of my two cents for what it's worth ;)

RE: Third
Answer
4/24/14 6:45 AM as a reply to Ian And.
IAN!!

I'm not sure if you'll see this but i think I just had the insight this morning whilst meditating into what you were trying to get into my thick head here.

Any movement by the mind into 'selfing' (and away from peace/silence/nirvana) IS suffering/dukkha.

It doesn't matter whether it's 'positive' fantasy or 'negative' self-recrimination. The very process of mind created 'selfing' is inherently painful when compared to stillness/silence/whatever you want to call it.

That's why Daniel keeps banging on about the 3 characteristics and their interrelation!? The impermanent selfing processes of the mind ARE Dukkha?

That's why it's called 'insight' meditation? The interrelation of the 3C's literally comes as a flash of insight?

Wow - I'm dead.

Walking into work and my sense of self in relation to others was held in its proper proportion for the first time. There's no-one here to defend.

Selfing is just a (painful) process which comes and goes right? It's not a 'thing'.

emoticon

RE: Third
Answer
4/24/14 1:07 PM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Robin Woods:
IAN!!

I'm not sure if you'll see this but i think I just had the insight this morning whilst meditating into what you were trying to get into my thick head here.

Any movement by the mind into 'selfing' (and away from peace/silence/nirvana) IS suffering/dukkha.

It doesn't matter whether it's 'positive' fantasy or 'negative' self-recrimination. The very process of mind created 'selfing' is inherently painful when compared to stillness/silence/whatever you want to call it.

Selfing is just a (painful) process which comes and goes right? It's not a 'thing'.


Robin, you've got it!

Ian: "Therefore, it is necessary to know that delusion can be (and ought to be) let go of. This is what the Dhamma teaches. Freedom from greed, anger and delusion."

Freedom from greed, anger, and delusion is seeing this process at work within the mind and letting go of it! That is the basis for awakening that Gotama was speaking about.

There is a section in Richard Gombrich's book What The Buddha Thought that expresses this idea of the mental processing that goes on in our thinking. It occurs in Chapter 8 at the heading "The Five Khandha Are Processes." You might want to pick up this book and slowly read through it as it may have the effect of setting off other realizations that are lying dormant with your awareness. This book can be found as a free PDF on the Internet; you'll have to research it though as I don't have a link to it.

I was first made aware of this insight in a previous book of his How Buddhism Began, The Conditioned Genesis of the Early Teachings, where it was mentioned in a single innocuous and innocent sentence: "The Buddha's interest in how not what, his emphasis on processes rather than objects, could be said to be summarized in his teaching of the paticca-samuppada, conditioned origination." From that simple sentence, I came to the realization!

A few excerpts from that section in the What The Buddha Thought book:

"I have mentioned above that the five khandha are the five sets of processes which fuel our continued existence in samsara because they involve grasping, appetite, thirst, desire, whatever you like to call it. I have also shown khandha to be a short form of aggi-kkhandha, a common Pali compound word meaning 'mass of flame.' So there are not just five heaps of fuel but five fires burning fuel. Like all fires, they are in a sense what they are made of; and this takes us back to the Vedic thought that fire is both object and subject. Moreover, they are not things but processes...."

And the real kicker:

"Most important of all, he deduced something that I think was never explicit either in Vedic thought or in its Hindu descendants: that what we can experience is only process. This may be his most important philosophic idea. [I agree!] Our consciousness and its objects are like fire in that they are not things but processes, unceasing change. Something beyond this is perhaps conceivable, but the very nature of our apparatus for having experiences determines that if it does exist it must lie completely outside our experience. . . .

"Egotism and belief in an unchanging ego were the fires' essential fuel, so once they were gotten rid of, those fires would go out."

In peace,
Ian

RE: Third
Answer
4/24/14 7:44 PM as a reply to Ian And.
Yeah, that's cool, it is all processes, impersonal processes, if I might add. Sorry to intrude, but it is all a process, fed by fuel, take away the fuel, the fire goes out, but one needs patience to watch a fire go out, and many other factors to not throw more fuel on the fire.

Going to contemplate on this....now

RE: Third
Answer
4/25/14 6:01 AM as a reply to Ian And.
Thanks Ian! I think I see it now.

'The habit of employing self-deception to maintain one's self esteem has often become so ingrained that the first step to developing accurate self-awareness is honest acknowledgement of the existence of hidden emotions, motives, and tendencies in the mind, without immediately suppressing them.'

Wow - that sentence, in particular, encapsulates my entire psychology. Mindfulness laid it all bare for me - in real time. Shadow. Projection. The whole thing.

haha - my parent's divorce and aftermath (my Big Issue) was never 'my' fault because I was never a 'thing' in the first place!!!

Quite a lot of disorientation today. All these patterns of accumulated muscular tension in my body that I've been holding for all these years - and no-one to hold them for!!

It seems obvious to me that this insight is what Shinzen calls stream-entry so I retract my claims to 'Third' (whatever that meant) above.

So whenever selfing/suffering arises you just drop it in favor of Peace? It doesn't even matter whether you note it as 'talk', 'noise', 'suffering', 'why' or whatever?

Now to begin the 'mental gardening' that Richard Zen and Thich Nhat Hanh talk about!

Thanks so much Ian for always being there when I needed someone!

RE: Third
Answer
4/25/14 10:49 AM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Robin Woods:
It seems obvious to me that this insight is what Shinzen calls stream-entry so I retract my claims to 'Third' (whatever that meant) above.

Could you possibly share with us what you mean by third path? Could you then explain why you no longer categorize yourself as such? Could you share the new Shinzen description and how it fits you?
Thanks,
~D

RE: Third
Answer
4/25/14 12:23 PM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Robin: "So whenever selfing/suffering arises you just drop it in favor of Peace? It doesn't even matter whether you note it as 'talk', 'noise', 'suffering', 'why' or whatever?"

No! You're not fully understanding this. It is not about always seeking peace. Peace is the logical outcome of wisdom! It's about "seeing things as they are" with wisdom! With true knowingness and knowledge about whatever circumstance one is viewing.

Robin, Robin, Robin. You are regressing rather than progressing! You need to open up your mind and see the big, overall picture! Your current focus is too narrow. And that is, to a great extent, a result of the instruction you've been following, which has you focusing on a narrow window of reality.

Forget about what you've been taught about "noting" as it is described here and elsewhere on the Internet. The purpose of that kind of noting was to put you into "present time" (i.e. to promote mindfulness or sati) so that you can see directly what is happening in the moment. Wisdom is developed when you are able to skillfully discern the truth and act accordingly.

For example (and this is a very simplistic example which you need to use in order to see more complex problems that can arise): Let's say that you are a child who has never seen fire before. You see a fire and you want to touch it (as we know, children are always exploring physical phenomena in order to learn what it is all about because everything in this world is new to them). So, you put your hand into the fire and experience a burning pain, and immediately withdraw the hand. Wisdom has just taught you that attempting to touch a fire is not a wise thing to do if you wish to preserve your physical health! So, from now on, you will be careful and cautious around fires. In this process, you correctly discerned the nature of fire (it is hot and destructive of the things it touches), and have come to the correct conclusion about it: fire can be a useful object to have, but one must be careful around it. One must respect what it can do.

This isn't about the short term manipulation of your reactions just so you can "feel good" when something that you have previously viewed as being a negative is seeming to go against your "self." It is about seeing reality as it is! This means accepting reality with equanimity. And if necessary, figuring out how you are going to respond to this negative development without becoming distracted by totally breaking down emotionally. When you let your emotions become involved, sometimes, you stop thinking rationally. You stop seeing things as they are and figuring out how they got that way in the first place. See?

When you can see a mental reaction pattern that devolves into negative thinking patterns and fault finding, you stop looking for practical solutions to the matter and become engulfed in your own self imposed suffering (dukkha!). Your mind focuses solely on this negativity, causing you to suffer. See? And what you want to do is to see the truth about what is occurring so that you can react skillfully, becoming empowered by your own ability to correctly discern the truth.

Robin: "haha - my parent's divorce and aftermath (my Big Issue) was never 'my' fault because I was never a 'thing' in the first place!!!"

This is a perfect complex problem with which to view with wisdom. While the conclusion you draw above may be correct as far as it goes, what it fails to take into consideration is that your "Big Issue" was an issue that you yourself created within your mind without any objective evidence that it was true! Why you took your parent's divorce personally only you can say. What you took to be objective evidence was only your personal reaction (the ego's response) to the situation of your parents not being able to get along with one another, which likely didn't involve you directly, but was more likely based on misunderstandings they had with one another and an inability or unwillingness to change.

Do you see this yet? You need to use your deductive and inductive reasoning processes in order to see the situation as it is with wisdom, not as you "think" it is! This is what Gotama was teaching through the use of meditation in order to calm the mind so that it could more easily gather true insight (i.e. not based upon prejudice or speculation) about reality. He taught people how to see things as they are, not to buy into illusions or delusive thinking about things.

In peace,
Ian

RE: Third
Answer
4/26/14 2:12 AM as a reply to Dream Walker.
I thought I'd had a very clear insight into 'no-self-as-thing' which he defines as 'classical enlightenment' or 'stream-entry'. That is, when no feel-image-talk (or default mode network or whatever you want to call it) is arising, then 'I'm' not there. Real time awareness of my sense of self waxing and waning, coming on and off line. So that as 'stream-entry' rather than completing one progress of insight cycle.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fQrUx010gvI

But I'm probably just kidding myself...

I was taking 'third' above to be significant baseline mental quietening and non-duality in daily life. But like Ian implies below, I'm obviously still not getting this!

RE: Third
Answer
6/20/14 8:55 AM as a reply to Ian And.
Holy sh*t! The sensations in my face which used to point towards a centre of self have disappeared. My face just feels like any other patch of skin on my body now. Is that what you guys mean by 'centre-point dropping'? It's like being in some kind of three dimensional Wonderland! 

Like some sort of amazing drug which doesn't have any side effects and doesn't wear off?

Thank you! emoticon

RE: Third
Answer
6/20/14 9:51 AM as a reply to Robin Woods.
I've been working away at the centerpoint in my practice lately. The sensations of the face do often seem to be the centerpoint, but the centerpoint is more elusive than this. While you're marveling at the lack of identification with your face, you're likely identifying with sensations in the neck, shoulders, or heart chakra. The centerpoint is tricky

RE: Third
Answer
6/20/14 11:17 AM as a reply to Dada Kind.
Droll Dedekind:
I've been working away at the centerpoint in my practice lately. The sensations of the face do often seem to be the centerpoint, but the centerpoint is more elusive than this. While you're marveling at the lack of identification with your face, you're likely identifying with sensations in the neck, shoulders, or heart chakra. The centerpoint is tricky
Check the sensations of a boundry at the edges of skin and of your personal bubble too. Lots of subtle sensations that suggest a self in space.
Good luck,
~D

RE: Third
Answer
6/20/14 7:09 PM as a reply to Dada Kind.
Try attaining to 6th jhana, Boundless Consciousness, and try to find the Watcher from there.  One of Kenneth's tricks

RE: Third
Answer
6/28/14 11:31 PM as a reply to Dream Walker.
Dream Walker:
Droll Dedekind:
I've been working away at the centerpoint in my practice lately. The sensations of the face do often seem to be the centerpoint, but the centerpoint is more elusive than this. While you're marveling at the lack of identification with your face, you're likely identifying with sensations in the neck, shoulders, or heart chakra. The centerpoint is tricky
Check the sensations of a boundry at the edges of skin and of your personal bubble too. Lots of subtle sensations that suggest a self in space.
Good luck,
~D
Tolle promotes a practice of focusing in on the body energy and he also uses the term "pain body".   I sometimes do a body scan meditation before sleep and the goal is to erase the fixed identification as a body/persona and at the same time being complementary to the hierarchy of life and purposes of the body.