Somewhere between 1st and 17th Jhana :o)

Ann O'Nyme, modified 7 Years ago.

Somewhere between 1st and 17th Jhana :o)

Post: 1 Join Date: 3/14/14 Recent Posts
Hello,

I have been reading MTCB for the past few days but cannot find where I stand on the maps at the moment. Most likely, I am not familiar enough with them yet --

Background

  • Practicing meditation for about 15 months, typically 30 - 45 min per day
  • Practice based on MBSR, so with plenty of breath-meditation, noting and body-scan
  • Going to my first real retreat in about one month (Goenka)


"Highest" achievement or maybe I should say "strangest" stuff that happened to me

Toward the end of a one-day meditation workshop (not to say "retreat"), a couple of months ago, I was sitting with my eyes half-closed and experienced:
  • Very clear sensations, with excellent vision, hearing, ability to distinguish finely between the different touch-points on my knees, bottom, feet, hands on my thighs etc.
  • Not sure if I had a complete lack of focus (all sensations felt "equally strong", none was prominent) or if my attention was very pointed but shifting from one area to another very fast
  • Extreme calmness. I could observe everything around me and not feel reactive at all. Is this equanimity?
  • An odd separation between mind and body and at the same time a feeling of "It's all the same". I would consciously note sensations like "hearing", "feeling", "touch" while a small voice followed immediately with "Hey, you just had a mental process that made you aware of a physical sensation", immediately followed by "And this is a mental note about a mental note -- just so you are aware" immediately followed by "This self-referential noting could never end, you know, it's all the same". Followed by a new physical sensation...
  • Sensation that time passed -- if only because sensations came and went -- but no idea of how long I stayed in that state
  • After a while, it felt... well, not boring but rather that I had explored it enough. So I closed my eyes, shifted my focus back to the breath and it felt like a very standard meditation


Limitation

I have not been able to replicate this state since. To note that my day-to-day workoad has increased and so I only practice for 20 min. per day at the moment -- and it might be more for relaxation than insight.

Questions

Where does this fit in the maps?
Looking forward to the retreat, anything I should emphasize or be aware of?
For normal practice (ie, not the retreat), anything I should emphasize or be aware of?

Many thanks !

s.
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tom moylan, modified 7 Years ago.

RE: Somewhere between 1st and 17th Jhana :o)

Posts: 896 Join Date: 3/7/11 Recent Posts
Howdy Ann,
I hope you have a great retreat. There are some good suggestions about how to approach a retreat both on this site and here.

I would suggest not "trying to replicate this event" but rather to keep focusing on the present moment in which ever way you choose to to that.

that said, it sounds as though you have noticed the distinction between the physical sensations and the thought which follows them which means "mind and body". the focused, accelerating ability to note / notice and objectify the sensations sounds like the 3C's. apply large grain of salt -here-

good luck and have fun

tom

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