Practice Log: James

James ., modified 6 Years ago.

Practice Log: James

Posts: 225 Join Date: 3/31/14 Recent Posts
I've recently decided to practice more vipassana, in the past I could knock up states of jhana whenever I wanted, however they were temporary escapes, and they also took a lot of effort to maintain.

In an effort to not be such a dissenter in this community, and to gain more acceptance, I've decided to practice vipassana. The first experience of which I will log for you here, right now:

I practiced while sitting in my office chair, at first there was that background worrying (which is always present) and that inner narration of how I would write this post (I'm very self-asborbed), I entered a state of jhana and observed the peacefulness of it, the mind-body shift occurred when I became aware of my thinking about thinking, essentially. I marvelled at observing my thought stream, and too be honest, the whole session was quite pleasant. 

There were a couple of profound experiences: the sensation of knots untying in the head (some primordial tensions), the absence of the sensation of self (usually a heaving 'being'), the penetration and thus de-solidifying of the sensation of self, which collapses usually when you attend to it inappropriately.

As I vipassanized deeper, it became easier to not have setbacks while meditating, because I became AWARE of the setbacks, and thus was put back on track. So instead of spirally into proliferation, the problems were killing themselves off.

The entire session was pervaded by a nice, very pleasant energy, not to heavy, but not vibrant and tingly (piti), more pleasant, like sukha.

More tmorrow, and possibly later today,

James

Edit:

My speculation is that I may be hanging around the A&P, as I there is a nice unsolid, fine vibratory sensation to what I experience. As opposed to the really hard, friction-y experience of my past (when I did noting when I was a teen). Furthermore I've experiencing some pretty epic disgust (prior to today), I speculate that my certainty of being the 'Tathagata' might have been an A&P symptom.

I'm primarily certain that I 'broke through' in December and thus have been cycling ever since. But due to my neglect of practice and my irresponsible attitude towards this community I haven't been able to make much practice, either that or my progress is really, really, slow and painful.
James ., modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Practice Log: James

Posts: 225 Join Date: 3/31/14 Recent Posts
Experience agnosticism:

Something I'd like to introduce here is the notion of experience agnosticism, experiences don't mean anything. For example, a person might have an experience of being the Tathagata, or some Tantric Heruka, he may see mandalas of deities or whatever, these experiences don't mean anything, they are devoid of 'value'.

Inherently, they are empty, and thus impermanent, I suspect this is the case for the DhO's classic 'fruition' non-experience, although fruition is claimed to be a non-experience I suspect that it is in fact a constructed (sankhata) experience that is very compelling.

Experiences don't imply anything, they are their own value. A Buddhist meditator encounters all sorts of compounded experiences, due to the nature of the mind. The trick is to develop insight after them.
James ., modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Practice Log: James

Posts: 225 Join Date: 3/31/14 Recent Posts
Lot of thoughts:

I feel that certain people underplay the role choice plays in how happy you are! Happiness is a habit, and habits are formed by making momentary choices.

For example the actualism method is to choose to be happy, or rather bring about the involuntary sensation of happiness after realizing how dumb it is to be sad (after investigating what causes your unhappiness), it really is that simple.

That having been said, choice is essential, for example if you see a state of happiness or a way of being in which you could happy, then it is necessary to enter that state, NOW! Nothing separates you from that state. It is necessary to be naive enough to understand that you CAN, be entirely without problems, you CAN, be that guy whose life's momentum smoothly heads towards oblivion.

About the whole 'Friends shouldn't let their friends argument':

Daniel argues that, rationally speaking, it makes sense to realize that there is no separate self. But I argue that people don't act from rationality, rationality influences no one's decisions. People act from existence, existential drives, not even drives, action is their way of being.

That's why it doesn't 'make sense'.

Other stuff:

Back when I was 16, briefly after I 'died' I became afraid of going to hell and all that blah blah blah (I wrote another post on this topic somewhere else), however I always envisioned this state of happiness and Deathlessness that I thought I would never attain.

It consisted of self-consummation, actualization, peace, touching the indriya with the body etc. Ironically enough, about 5 years later, I ended up getting what I wanted, and now I find it wanting, the state itself is not as round and satisfying as I thought it would be.

The classic insights of: birth is ended and so on and so forth, not yet actualized. But the fear of hell and an endless round of rebirths, now that's gone. It's quite obvious to me that I have at most maybe one or two births to go!
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Travis Gene McKinstry, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Practice Log: James

Posts: 208 Join Date: 7/26/12 Recent Posts
James .:
Lot of thoughts:

I feel that certain people underplay the role choice plays in how happy you are! Happiness is a habit, and habits are formed by making momentary choices.

For example the actualism method is to choose to be happy, or rather bring about the involuntary sensation of happiness after realizing how dumb it is to be sad (after investigating what causes your unhappiness), it really is that simple.

That having been said, choice is essential, for example if you see a state of happiness or a way of being in which you could happy, then it is necessary to enter that state, NOW! Nothing separates you from that state. It is necessary to be naive enough to understand that you CAN, be entirely without problems, you CAN, be that guy whose life's momentum smoothly heads towards oblivion.

James, 

I don't find your logic to resonate with my reasoning. How would you define 'a state of happiness or a way of being in which you could be happy'. Because I could argue that if you continue to only persue ways of being/states of happiness, this could become an addiction and is just as good as taking drugs. What Daniel/Buddha/this community supports is habits/addictions that promote MORE happiness. This is what vipassana is all about. Eradicating unwholesome states (states that perpetuate suffering/stress/unhappiness) and developing wholesome states (states that perpetuate more happiness and satisfactoriness/less stress).

Thanks for your commitment with meditaiton emoticon
James ., modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Practice Log: James

Posts: 225 Join Date: 3/31/14 Recent Posts
Travis Gene McKinstry:
James .:
Lot of thoughts:

I feel that certain people underplay the role choice plays in how happy you are! Happiness is a habit, and habits are formed by making momentary choices.

For example the actualism method is to choose to be happy, or rather bring about the involuntary sensation of happiness after realizing how dumb it is to be sad (after investigating what causes your unhappiness), it really is that simple.

That having been said, choice is essential, for example if you see a state of happiness or a way of being in which you could happy, then it is necessary to enter that state, NOW! Nothing separates you from that state. It is necessary to be naive enough to understand that you CAN, be entirely without problems, you CAN, be that guy whose life's momentum smoothly heads towards oblivion.

James, 

I don't find your logic to resonate with my reasoning. How would you define 'a state of happiness or a way of being in which you could be happy'. Because I could argue that if you continue to only persue ways of being/states of happiness, this could become an addiction and is just as good as taking drugs. What Daniel/Buddha/this community supports is habits/addictions that promote MORE happiness. This is what vipassana is all about. Eradicating unwholesome states (states that perpetuate suffering/stress/unhappiness) and developing wholesome states (states that perpetuate more happiness and satisfactoriness/less stress).

Thanks for your commitment with meditaiton emoticon

Hi Travis,

Yes I think I see the fallacy of what I was saying, I was essentially saying that one could choose to be happy, but I don't think it works like this. Rather one must eliminate unwholesome states and cultivate wholesome ones to bring about more happiness.

The process is gradual, like an ocean shelf slope (as the Buddha says).

Cheers,

James
James ., modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Practice Log: James

Posts: 225 Join Date: 3/31/14 Recent Posts
Day to day experience:

I seem to be able to solidly hit jhana, the experience is very satisfying, the heart feels a release and the body 'touches' or witnesses it. Unfortunately it's still solid, so not sure what to do with that.

Very satisfying, ultimately, unable to penetrate the jhana.

Terma:

When the Buddha taught the Mahayana, the Arahats fainted. When the Buddha taught the Vajryana, the Bodhisattvas fainted. When Daniel taught the humanization of Awakening, the Mushroom factor Buddhists fainted, when Richard taught the elimination of emotions, the DhO-ers fainted. When I taught the ridiculous craziness of not being a part of this community and yet still be awake independently, in my own way, against the grain, the DhO-ers fainted a second time.

The fact is, I am alive, I am Awake, I am well. But I am not a part of this community, it thus defeats the elitism present here.
James ., modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Practice Log: James

Posts: 225 Join Date: 3/31/14 Recent Posts
Back to my practice:

My practice consists of pure exertion, or diligence, viriya and appamada respectively. Because of my diligent right exertion, samma-padhana, I am able to smash out unwholesome states and reach supramundane states of distinction. Nothing really to report, on to more philosophizing!

Vajra Pride:

I have intense Vajra Pride very often, and my learning of the Tantras and Mahamudra, along with the Vajrayana as a whole, has lead me to see distinctly the different kinds of teachings, and stratify them accordingly. There are new synthetic teachings, such as the pragmatic/hardcore Dharma group that aim for specific states and achievements, but remain within the Hinayana. And because of this, when they start the ride, they fail to realize the magnitude of what they get into!

Then they discover that it is in fact possible to transmute emotions, see genuine non-duality and so on and so forth, and now they're like: We didn't sign up for this shit! Rofl.

On the other hand we have Pratyeka Buddhas like Jed McKenna, or Steven Norquist, who are essentially causation-denying nihilists who think they've become the be-all and end-all of spirituality.

Then you have people like me, infants in the Tantra and Vajrayana, who begin to see things like this. Quite interesting.
James ., modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Practice Log: James

Posts: 225 Join Date: 3/31/14 Recent Posts
Really nice session, very light, did not utilize the noting technique. Lots of cool experiences, vibrations, check. Anyways, back to the grind.

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