A Few Questions about Noting

Fox, modified 8 Years ago at 8/19/14 9:47 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/19/14 9:46 PM

A Few Questions about Noting

Posts: 2 Join Date: 8/19/14 Recent Posts
Hello Dharma Overground, I hope this is the right forum. I've been lurking around here for some time and I had a few questions. I discovered this website after being inspired by a post on LessWrong about meditating towards enlightenment. Since then I've been following that guide and practicing insight meditation for an hour a day every day for the past four months, trying not to miss any sessions. I've also read MCTB in that time. So far I've reached access concentration and just recently the first insight jhana, although I have trouble getting back to the jhana at times.

I have a few questions about noting practice. The breath on my upper lips is my object of perception. Normally when I meditate I note my breath in and out as well as the 'edges' of my breath when I exhale or inhale fully. When I have thoughts or feelings I note them, but normally I don't note outside sounds or physical sensations unless they become a distraction. By the time I reach access concentration I have perceived vibrations for a while and I normally drop noting and focusing on perceiving vibrations in my breath.

Is this a mistake? Should I continue noting throughout my entire session, even past access concentration and into the jhana? I can hear subtle noises in the room when focusing on vibrations, but I normally only note them when my focus 'switches' to them in a noticeable way. Is this a mistake? Should I note every sensation I perceive as fast as I can, even when I am trying to focus on vibrations? The latter seems rather difficult as I will constantly be trying to switch between all my senses.

What about noting practices outside of meditation? Is this something worth doing a few hours every day during my normal routine or is it mostly only useful when on retreat? How worthwhile are these practices?

And lastly I've only been following the form of insight meditation I've mentioned in the guide above, I haven't worked on concentration meditation at all, although I am curious about the pleasurable states of consciousness it produces. Strangely I haven't found any really specific guides on the same level as the LessWrong page for concentration meditation.

Does anyone have any recommendations for concentration meditation tutorials?

Thanks for reading,
A Dietrich Ringle, modified 8 Years ago at 8/19/14 10:02 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/19/14 10:02 PM

RE: A Few Questions about Noting

Posts: 882 Join Date: 12/4/11 Recent Posts
From my experience, Jhana is a type of karmic ability that will arise according to need. I don't have it any more, but I don't miss it either.

You can concentrate on almost anything, so just go with what feels good, if you are comfortable with that. There are all kinds of things that come up.

What I have been working on lately is noticing the distinction between jhanic bliss (I don't really think of it as a jhana though) and pain, versus self idealization. More specifically the way these are felt in the body. So you might notice during the day if there are times when you might want to slip into momentary concentration if a problem or somethiing arises that you can't seem to decide on. That's what I do, at least.
Dream Walker, modified 8 Years ago at 8/20/14 10:06 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/20/14 10:06 AM

RE: A Few Questions about Noting

Posts: 1459 Join Date: 1/18/12 Recent Posts
Hi Fox,
Welcome to the Dho
Try this link - A General, All Purpose Jhana Thread
And here- MCTB Concentration vs. Insight and the following chapters

Google this ---> site:www.dharmaoverground.org jhana concentration
Lots of good stuff around...
Good luck,