Cessation without path?

Eva M Nie, modified 6 Years ago.

Cessation without path?

Posts: 831 Join Date: 3/23/14 Recent Posts
Is it possible to get cessation without path?  I experienced something that was like cessation a while back, there was some other things going on, I was thinking about something rather intensely, and then I had a seemed to sink down into a super wonderful good feeling.  At that time, I was outside near other people so what happened was it looked from my perspective was that people near me were suddenly gone and other people appeared in other places.  Scared me at first!  Then I realized that people weren't 'gone', just further along in their walking, such that the guy who had been far away walking towards me was now close to me and the other guy who had been in front of me was now no longer there but now moved on.  But missing a few seconds had made them seem to disappear and reappear which I can tell you is rather freaky if you don't know in advance it's going to happen!  If there hadn't been people walking around, I may well not have noticed that aspect of it though since nothing would have been moving to show the time loss.  I was standing the whole time and did not fall over or anything so I don't think I passed out or anything, no history of medical issues, and no one around me seemed to notice anything strange.  Once I figured out that only a few seconds had passed, I felt quite relieved.  Afterwards, I felt kind of spaced out and nauseus for about 15 minutes then seemed to recover.  Just wondering, from what I've read, this sounds similar to cessation.  Is it likely there can be something like cessation but is not?  
-Eva
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Jen Pearly, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Cessation without path?

Posts: 566 Join Date: 7/28/13 Recent Posts
Hi, Eva. I guess since you didn't mention it, you didn't have some clear apprehension of one of the "Three Doors" before it happened? And afterward, did you feel very, very different in a way that didn't fade over time? I just started as practice log, "Jen Pearly's Practice Log," and there I describe what are so far permanent changes in how I'm experiencing reality since August 8, when some cessation happened to me.
Eva M Nie, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Cessation without path?

Posts: 831 Join Date: 3/23/14 Recent Posts
The thing is, it was some time ago, at which time I had no knowledge of meditation, paths or anything like that.  I did not expect any differences and did not make any effort to notice if there were any.  I have changed much through my life but I don't remember if there was any particular extra amount of change after that time or not .  If there were any, I would not have attributed them to that event, I would have attributed them to regular learning and growth. The main memory I have of it is that I felt weird right afterwards but I didn't keep notes and have little idea of the sequence of various events compared to other events.  By now, I only remember the parts that at that time seemed more interesting, but the nuances are not remembered as I had not considered them important at that time.   It was only recently after reading MCTB that I would have considered much that it might be anything other than apparently random apparently useless strangeness. 
-Eva
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Richard Zen, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Cessation without path?

Posts: 1631 Join Date: 5/18/10 Recent Posts
I would focus more on trying to get a cessation again whether you did it or not.  When I say "trying" I'm meaning just consistent letting go so it happens on it's own.  I find people have too much attachment to "stream-entry" as a concept and it gets in the way and also ignores what equanimity you've developed.  If you don't have stream-entry but you're developing by letting go, you're getting better and better equanimity which isn't bad.

Some who get stream-entry attach too much afterwards:
http://www.dharmaseed.org/teacher/74/talk/22715/
9:35 especially

I would look at this thread as well:

http://www.dharmaoverground.org/web/guest/discussion/-/message_boards/message/5569530

Good luck!
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Daniel M. Ingram, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Cessation without path?

Posts: 3183 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
No Cessation without Path, but there are lots of things that can look a lot like and cause a sense of some sort of gap or sense of things stopping or whatever, with the A&P, dissolution, 8th jhana, and basically any hard stateshift between ñanas or jhanas being capable of causing something that can seem like that. Thus, the repeating it advice is good, as this is the key. See if it happens again, see what came before it, see what comes after it, etc and keep practicing.
Jeremy May, modified 6 Years ago.

RE: Cessation without path?

Posts: 191 Join Date: 8/12/14 Recent Posts
Daniel has a perfect answer but I wanted just to add something to explain why he is correct.

There cannot be cessation except for when something that has arisen experiences cessation.

You had a moment of clarity.  In this moment, from what I can surmise, you did experience a temporary cessation.  But we cannot call a temporary cessation a true cessation.  We must call it a suspension.

This moment, in zen, is given as a gift by the awakened masters.  They would sometimes use a stick, hitting a bhikkhu during zazen at the moment where that master percieves the moment when it is possible to hit the bhikkhu and cause a suspension.

Why?  Because if you follow Daniel's advice during the moment before, during, and after the suspension, you can learn to cause the suspension whenever you wish.  What follows this knowledge will be true cessation.

I once commented on a forum "there must be mindfulness for escape".  The Buddhists still send me emails.... "Enlightenment does not take effort and mindfulness takes effort."

No, Mindfulness does not take effort.  Learning Mindfulness may take effort, but Mindfullness is a natural state of being.  Why are they confused?  Mindfulness alone does not help us achieve cessation.  That is why we must learn to also meditate.  When our meditation is strong and we can achieve long sittings, there are many moments of Suspension that happen naturally, even without a stick to the back.  If we are mindful, we will see the moment before, during, and after.  We will then know The Way.

Because you even asked the question, because you knew that you did not achieve cessation, because you knew that you did achieve temporary cessation, because you intuitively see the Light so strongly that you found one of the best dharma teacher in america and posted on his forum, because of all these things, You are a natural Buddhist and all of these things that you will learn will be learned easily for you. You are going to be a great Teacher!  Keep Going!!

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