Shaking Explained

Illuminatus, modified 9 Years ago at 9/17/14 3:13 AM
Created 9 Years ago at 9/17/14 3:12 AM

Shaking Explained

Posts: 101 Join Date: 7/16/14 Recent Posts
NOTE: I originally posted this in the Energy Practices board, but since I don't really do energy practices formally, and have shaking/trembling arise as a result of meditation (and always considered it normal; I only found MCTB and this forum recently), I've moved it here. If it needs moving again can someone point me in the right direction?


There is a lot of confusion regarding body shaking during energy practices, the A&P, and the many other situations in which shaking can spontaneously arise.

I will explain what the shaking is, in my view.

If you pay attention, you will notice that shaking coincides with memories arising and passing. These are memories you have now found equanimity with via your practice. They were usually troublesome in nature, and were built into the system as a "block" due to resistance to that experience at the time.

Memories / emotional imprints are stored as muscle tension patterns across the whole body. The area between the solar plexus and the base of the spine appears to be the epicentre, or "distribution network", of these muscle tension patterns, hence why shaking appears to emanate from here most often.

In actuality, muscle tension patterns can occur anywhere in the body. For example, releasing a blocked leg or arm muscle via posture work will spotaneously release the memory associated with when that block was formed. Whenever I do posture work I always, without exception, experience vague, often distant and seemingly unrelated to anything, memories, drifting through my awareness and vanishing as the muscle is released. If an arm is released, the shaking will nevertheless move into the solar plexus/base of spine area as the memory release occurs. Again, this area appears to be the "distribution network".

However, the solar plexus/base of spine area itself, and indeed all the muscles associated with breathing including particularly the diaphragm (hence breath of fire work) are major, MAJOR stores of muscle tension patterns.

When, via your insight work, you find equaniminity with certain experiences (or general "themes" of experience formed by the summation of many individual experiences), the muscles will begin to unlock as the full emotional weight of that experience is now allowed by the unconscious to be experienced by the mindbody. You will perceive this as energy flow in that area.

The shaking then kicks in as this is how muscles dissipate stored tension.

I recommend that, rather than allowing violent shakes (I can enter full seizures at will during this type of work), that instead you stymie the unblocking process, slow down the shaking and let it flow at a lighter pace, and simply allow a much longer period of time of gentle shaking to allow a full dispersion.

It is also important that you investigate the sensations associated with the release, using insight meditation on the areas of energy flow, while this is going on. The areas of energy flow will tend to move. Follow the movement with your awareness. This additional practice is equally as important as the shaking itself, as this allows the insight released from the "locked" experiences to be registered by the conscious mind.

To allow the most unimpeded flow, relax your face and simply choose to "be" with the sensations of the release in the body. Facial contortion, wincing etc., is actually a key part of emotional repression, and therefore a key part of the resistance process which initially created the blocks (this is why you wince when you see something unpleasant -- the face can actually inhibit the rest of the body from experiencing the full weight of the emotional experience).

I hope this clears up all your shaking questions and can really help you refine your practice. If you have any questions however, please ask!



Here are some situations I've experienced shaking:

- Trauma releasing exercises (TRE, David Berceli -- great way to induce shaking, and this was the practice following which I made the above theory)
- Yoga
- Physical exercise
- Posture work
- Meditation, especially when my "stuff" bubbles up into awareness
- Breath work
- Reichian therapy (though I have only dabbled -- the shaking correlates with the dissolving of "emotional armouring" in my experience)
- Genuine shock/anxiety-inducing experiences in the moment (I now am aware of the body's desire to shake, and no longer compulsively repress, which is what stores tension/blocks energy flow in both my theory and Berceli's)

The A&P I'm in currently has effortlessly bubbled up tons of "stuff" to be investigated and a lot of it (maybe most) induces shaking. And I'm getting lots of equanimity with those "themes" following the shaking.
faB, modified 8 Years ago at 2/1/15 5:02 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/1/15 5:02 PM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 34 Join Date: 6/10/11 Recent Posts
Interesting. I noticed random memories come up during Reichian Therapy exercices (with full belly breathing), and also during Vipassana.

I became aware recently of the tension around the diaphragm, indeed. Now there is regularly shaking in the tummy area anytime I become aware of the tension there.

What makes you think the solar plexus is an area of major tension? And how would you tell if tension is releasing from that area? (since iti s a bony area...). I often feel a strong pressure in that area, at the bony area between the pectorals, but never seemed to get anywhere with Vipassana.

But hmm  maybe it'll just take time now, lots and lots of tensions seems to dissipate from the belly.
Dada Kind, modified 8 Years ago at 2/2/15 1:02 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/2/15 1:01 PM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 633 Join Date: 11/15/13 Recent Posts
This is the standard bioenergetic view, as I understand it. For an elaboration: almost anything by Lowen, and Character Analysis by Reich. The latter is virtually impenetrable if you're not solid on Freud.

Note, also, that the repression of memories (and the associated affect) prevents consciousness of archaic beliefs and script decisions. This is the tie-in to cognitive therapies.

Chuhr Singh Nijjar, modified 8 Years ago at 2/2/15 3:52 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/2/15 3:46 PM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 4 Join Date: 7/23/14 Recent Posts
Edd thanks for your post, it resonated with me.

This is my first post.
I was meditating quite intensely last year 1 - 2 hours a day and sometimes more.  I experienced the following:

 A lot of shaking, shuddering, chakras vibrating, the base chakra pushing up.  Energy travelling up my body, moving around the stomach area as if there is an entity in there, body contorting into various strange postures as if trying to release the energy.  I also time distortions
where  the body seemed to melt into itself.  I went through a period of fear but have also experienced beautiful energy travelling up my body ending with a shower of energy over my head which was very nice.  Have also experienced bliss, pleasure (at times orgasmic) and peace.  My breath seems to be linked to the shaking in particular when the stomach shakes or pumps ,the breath becomes fast like breath of fire in yoga,  I am unable to stop it, when the shaking and the stops so does my breath and I no longer need to breath and I experience peace, only for the cycle to start again when I breathe again
and focus on breath or sensations ( I practice anapana and Goenka style vipassana). 

I am not meditating as much as previously due to difficulties with health but when I do meditate it does not take long for the shaking to
start.  I am now also experiencing internal pumping usually in my head but also in my throat which ends when energy is released from my

It feels like release of emotions stuck in the body. I have noticed that if I focus on sensations or emotions (equanimously) produced by
memories or negative thoughts I can start shaking or pumping.

I have been shaking since April 2014 when I restarted my meditation, though I did experience shaking prior to that.  It seems to have been around for a while but the intensity has increased as I have increased my sessions.

I am getting rather tired of it now.  Any advice on how to move on from this stage would be helpful.
Daniel - san, modified 8 Years ago at 2/2/15 6:18 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/2/15 6:17 PM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 309 Join Date: 9/9/14 Recent Posts
Hi Chuhr,
You may be aware of this already but it sounds like you have active kundalini energy happening, also referred to as a kundalini awakening
These processes unfold in different ways for different people and the timelines vary drastically as well
In my experience and from my research there is no way to willfully 'move on' from these experiences but there are ways to assist with the purification process, and when things get to be too much, there are ways to slow things down a bit
That said, the process seems to have it's own will and consciousness apart from our own (ego's) and, in a word, surrender is the best medicine.
There are quite a few posts on the subject, one made very recently here
Best! Daniel
Illuminatus, modified 8 Years ago at 2/2/15 6:59 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/2/15 6:59 PM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 101 Join Date: 7/16/14 Recent Posts
Chuhr Singh Nijjar:
I am getting rather tired of it now.  Any advice on how to move on from this stage would be helpful.

I am going to race through this answer because it's too complex to write in great detail at this moment.

- I have changed my mind about why the stomach/solar plexus is a common focal point for shaking. It is simply because this is where the psoas muscle wraps around the spine. This is likely also the source of the "snake wrapping around base of spine" myth in kundalini. Psoas is important because it gets a hard time. It stores a lot of tension due to bad posture, too much sitting, and various mental activities.

- Further to the above, all shaking is simply tension patterns releasing. For the modern Westerner, maybe 80% of their muscle tension patterns are caused by very poor posture, which is endemic.

- Poor posture itself has a "co-creating" relationship with the thinking mind, which I am modelling as the "left brain" currently. So, with a relaxation of muscles, you get a wider field of awareness (right brain). With muscle contraction, you get a narrower field of awareness (left brain). Your typical Westerner is a left brain junkie, absolutely endemic, EVERYTHING "must be controlled", and thus the fine motor control of the left brain is used for EVERYTHING, and tracks of muscle tension patterns are worn deep into you. This also causes shitty posture, and shitty posture activates those worn tracks (so poor posture has a 1:1 relationship with thought).

- When you start meditation, some of these patterns begin to release, and you get shaking. However, you will just re-wear them back in very soon after you stop meditating, hence why shaking lasts years sometimes. Also, poor posture and lack of THE CORRECT BODY MOVEMENTS means those muscles are never stretched out and returned to their correct positions even after they are relaxed.

- "Fixing" all of the above is practically a life-long task. I have done extremely well with it.

- In fact, I got stream entry by RECLINING while meditating so that the sitting posture (which will be shitty posture for most people, since they have poor posture anyway; sitting will compound the problem) doesn't interfere with the relaxation/allowing the shaking to take its course.

Soooooooo. A "shake" is a muscle relaxing. Let them all happen BY RECLINING. Eventually they begin to subside, but some will be left. You learn to spot all of these tiny little contractions AND LET EACH ONE GO.

And, the final piece of the jigsaw. Each tiny little muscle contraction has:

- A sense of self associated with it.
- Is an attempt at permanence.
- Is uncomfortable (=suffering).

The whole shebang is in these tension patterns. By letting every single one go, at a rate of dozens per second towards the end, I finally reached a place where there were no muscle tension patterns left, got NOTHINGNESS, and stream entry, with all the marvellous after-effects described in MCTB.

So, a new model, describing the same thing in a different way, with actionable advice to achieve the result.

When you let EVERYTHING relax, your body goes almost entirely numb and it is almost exactly like a ketamine trip -- and results in formless realm access. This takes practice.

The main resistance to letting each muscle tension pattern relax is that that tension is how the thinking mind maintains a sense of self. You let one go, it will try to assert another. You must let them each go, and, as I said, towards the end before nothingness, you will be letting them go at a rate of dozens if not hundreds per second. This will all be done with eyes moving rapidly (REM).

Hope that helps.

Sakari, modified 8 Years ago at 2/3/15 3:20 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/3/15 2:53 AM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 38 Join Date: 12/28/13 Recent Posts
Thanks for all the info, fascinating stuff to me since I do TRE and Reichian therapy. When you do get the time, I would love to read the longer version and/or some relevant links you might have.

Also, I am curious to know whether you feel you have gotten lasting and significant benefit from doing the techniques you describe. I would assume so since you are here writing about them, but I ask because some people are focused on more technical goals, for example stream entry as you mentioned, and seem to have less regard for how their practice affects their overall satisfaction in life, peace of mind or some other down-to-earth gauge of progress.

Also, what do you mean by "correct body movements"?
Illuminatus, modified 8 Years ago at 2/3/15 6:29 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/3/15 6:29 AM

RE: Shaking Explained

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Thanks for all the info, fascinating stuff to me since I do TRE and Reichian therapy. When you do get the time, I would love to read the longer version and/or some relevant links you might have.

I have practised TRE extensively. Here are my views on TRE.

TRE (trauma releasing exercises, by David Berceli, for anyone not familiar) targets the psoas because it's an easy target, some of the reasons being touched on in my post above. It's a huge set of muscles. It does acquire tension. It is largely responsible for the foetal position (contraction) response of fear, which people resist, so this is one way it becomes "locked". Poor posture and too much sitting are other reasons.

The only way to "unlock" the psoas (and thus the pelvis, and a knock-on effect with the legs and everything else) is to allow it to move the way it "wants" to. So, through practising various movements, I have built a "mind-map" of all my muscles and can see how they "want" to move. Yes, I have excellent posture, close to "pre-industrial African savannah" quality. An example of a "correct" psoas movement is to bend your knees so your body goes into a stoop, then dip your torso forward by hinging at your hips, then straighten head and torso while still having them dipped forward, then stand up "through" the hips areas. You should feel all those muscles in the hips areas suddenly activating. There will be a "snake winding"-like feel to the movement. Another is to crouch down with knees bent and stand up "through" your legs. So, imagine a vertical line through your heels up through your ass, and your body is straightening up through that axis.

These are obviously damn hard to describe via text. Bottom line is, you can figure most of these out yourself by paying attention to what your muscles tell you. That is how yoga was discovered. When I'm doing this, you would think I'm doing yoga. But yoga is someone else's system. They give you enough of these moves in a paint-by-numbers fashion in the hope you hit the muscle groups causing you most trouble. Far better to simply learn to listen to the signals your muscles (and whole body) send you.

I believe the body (or mind-body, if you still want to believe there is a mind) has its own corrective programmes. Shaking is one of them. I can stand up, relax my body, and have it suddenly start to move into a variety of corrective shapes. This is what I do each morning to recover from contracted positions during sleep. Most people just get up and go to work, and wonder why they're muttering under their breath about bullshit the whole morning -- well the muscle tension pattern is still feeding back into the CNS and becoming "thoughts". I think the right brain tries to re-establish the "original template" for the body by such things. I think the left brain, which doesn't see the "utility" in shaking, and also does not want to feel self-conscious around others, prevents it happening. Then you get people making mythologies about shaking and stuff. The right brain is also inherently meditative and I believe vipassana kind of emulates (or sets back on track) a natural way of interpreting reality. "Right" and "left brain" are just kind of placeholders in this model at the moment. I know a fair bit about them but it could just as easily by forebrain-hindbrain inhibition rather than left-right inhibition. Just take it as "ego/self/'controller'" vs. "natural body state" if you like.

The next very important thing you need to know about muscle shaking and relaxation (and therefore TRE) is that it releases neurotransmitters, probably opioids, and I think other things too. Getting these people to lie there shaking in TRE is dumping powerful neurochemicals into their brains. I feel high as a kite after doing anything like this.

Yet these people will then get up, leave the session, wake up the next day and begin their old habits which created the tension in the first place, and the tension is restored. So, no, this does not "release memories" or whatever in the sense of permanent change. It's a maintenance programme, like yoga. I am grateful to all these things by teaching me the above map so I can do my own exercises. I have also developed a significant ability to control my own emotions and perceptions, too, because these both manifest largely via muscle tension patterns.

TRE, like yoga, is mainly an endorphin trip. Without identifying and correcting the processes that caused the tension in the first place, no insight has been gained. Also, these exercises are rather clumsy ways of activating/correcting muscles -- there is now no muscle in my body I cannot "link" with and correct, with surgical precision.

Also, I am curious to know whether you feel you have gotten lasting and significant benefit from doing the techniques you describe. I would assume so since you are here writing about them, but I ask because some people are focused on more technical goals, for example stream entry as you mentioned, and seem to have less regard for how their practice affects their overall satisfaction in life, peace of mind or some other down-to-earth gauge of progress.

If it was stream entry, which I believe it was, it was followed by probably the best two weeks of my life -- total equanimity with all things, a deep all-encompassing love, regular "blink-outs" where the curtain of duality would be pulled away and I would "merge" seamlessly into everything else (no sense of separation with anything), mega psychic powers, easily getting 8 samatha jhanas, having huge control over my own emotional state, perfect posture, having my body kind of "run itself" without "me" interfering (which is where I got a lot of the above realizations from) etc. etc.

It was great.

Then I started "cycling" and MCTB says the first cycle after stream entry is really tough because the territory hasn't quite been mastered. Well, I am completely fed up of practising now. Right at this moment it feels like another let-down to add to the list.

Someone will probably read that and say, "Hey buddy, you only got an Arising & Passing. That's not stream entry!" Well, frankly, I am sick of hearing about the entire fucking thing. I'm only replying to this because the annoying auto-notify thing is still turned on.

Also, what do you mean by "correct body movements"?
People don't walk and move how they are meant to. Thought gets in the way. Simplified, right brain is "supposed" to control the body. Its movements are fluid, like liquid. And muscle motions are circular. !Important!

Left brain is supposed to be goal-orientated, precision movements, such as grasping. Left-brain muscle motions are linear, operating in straight lines (think of reaching and grasping).

Thought correlates with left brain. Left brain operates body poorly. Watch a schizophrenic walk -- it is stiff, "linear", non-fluid. Total left-brain sabotage of the organism.

Westerners are pseudo-schizophrenics since they are conditioned into left-brain modality from age 0. Their posture is poor and motions non-fluid as a result. We venerate good dancers because they display what we are no longer capable of.

So. Correct body movements. And most of your thoughts and problems will start to disappear. Number-one tip: walk/move/behave/think in circular motions. Be fluid.

So, when you walk, the leg should rotate around each of its joints. Notice how, if you let it, its movement is a series of rotations.

If you need to stretch an arm or leg or your back or whatever, don't stretch linearly, but instead move it in an "arc" while extending. Think circular in all motion.
Illuminatus, modified 8 Years ago at 2/3/15 9:24 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/3/15 9:24 AM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 101 Join Date: 7/16/14 Recent Posts

I went away after writing the last reply (in which I was frustrated by an apparent stop in progress) and began practising.

I practised exactly as I did when I got "stream entry" -- semi-reclined on a bed, knees slightly pulled up to allow the psoas to flex responsively. I will write this up as a precise guide at some point. The super-condensed version is that I use a combination of:

a) "Letting the body do what it wants" and
b) Locating a "sense of self" (which is inferred from muscle tension patterns which are "not" "part of the organic body template"  -- so, mental activity etc. which interrupts "normal body flow", e.g. the thinking mind, which works via contracted muscles in patterns which go against its "natural flow". Quotes are used liberally to show an artificial separation of the processes of "thinking mind" from "natural body". I believe this is a useful separation to make at this point.

So the process is: continually check "what body wants to do", e.g. "wants to go into REM right now" or "wants this muscle area here to relax right now", and also be on the lookout for breaks in this flow, which is where a sense of self is inferred from, and relax that sense of self contraction and go back to step A.

I quickly got into high jhana (vipassana and samatha are combined in this "meditation" -- as they likely ALWAYS WERE) but there was a block preventing me reaching nothingness. I repeated the process, getting frustrated at points but staying diligently with the method A and B above. Suddenly I started shaking and contracted into the foetal position and broke into floods of tears, uncontrollable sobbing. All memories of my stepfather's funeral, and other memories of him, from 2 weeks ago, came to the surface. I had heavily repressed those emotions during the funeral as I had things to do on the day regarding the arrangements and the guests etc. I thought I had "processed" those afterwards but evidently not.

Since that funeral, my legs had been EXTREMELY stiff and I found myself becoming tired often and easily. Since this meditation just now, with the sobbing, my legs are now back to normal. The "crying pathway" includes the psoas -- and in fact all muscles, but there are definitely "pathways" with some muscle groups targeted more intensely depending upon emotion, e.g. the jaw tensed for "determination". Crying unlocked the legs. And it has returned a softness to my face (which was tensed before, which is part of stoicism/repression).

One of my main points here is that EVERYTHING is connected. You cannot say, "Do TRE and that will release X emotional event". There is SOME TRUTH to it, but there are various depths you have to reach. You have to trust your own mind-body to really take you there.

And when you get there, you realize things like: samatha and vipassana are actually two sides of the same coin. The body, memories, thoughts, emotions, actions, posture, breathing -- EVERYTHING -- is the same thing. Not wanting to practise is probably part of a phase of the practice. Everything is everything.

Personally I hate it a lot of the time now. Sometimes it REALLY delivers. A lot of the time nowadays however I wish for nothing. Not death, just nothing actually existing. It's like how Daniel Ingram, having reached arahatship or whatever, in one post and video interview said he's now practising a different method (I forget what it's called) so he doesn't have to have emotions any more. There's always some new goal to go for, to get less suffering, and it's way too much hard work most of the time.
Sakari, modified 8 Years ago at 2/4/15 11:27 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/4/15 7:41 AM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 38 Join Date: 12/28/13 Recent Posts
Thanks again for your insights and pointers.

Re TRE: Over the last few years I've done maybe 40-50 sessions, about 5-40 minutes each. Even with this inconsistent practice I've gotten far more sensitive to triggering the shaking, which gets pretty violent within minutes. I've noticed some patterns in the shaking, and for a moment after the session I feel more relaxed and breathe deeper than usual. But never have I experienced significant pleasure from TRE. Perhaps related to this: someone I knew said she experienced yoga postures as a gateway to ecstacy, while I got from doing the same postures no more than the moderate pleasure that I get from any type of exercise of similar duration and intensity, say, jogging.

Re circular, fluid movement: I tried the psoas movements as you described, and I think I got the hang of it. I, too, have in the last few years started paying more attention to what my muscles tell me. Especially in the last few weeks that I've been doing Lowen's bioenergetic exercises, I've mostly spontaneously, daily or more often done a few postures which resemble those of yoga or cats and dogs: Mainly a foetal-type position (facing the floor), or having knees and elbows on the floor, head hanging. While standing I also like to circularly reach arms upward, twist the torso and, if I'm lying on the floor, roll around a bit. I don't much think about how I move while I do them, those movements just feel good to me. I've also been dancing more, in free form. I also do a bit of yoga sun salutations, and though they feel somewhat artificial and forced, do make me feel better and have gotten less effortful over time.

I dabbled in powerlifting, but stopped because it was making me stiffer, tired in the nerves, and because Jack Willis' book Reichian Therapy advised that those types of lifting hinder the release of muscular armoring. Overall, I've moved from structured, goal-oriented exercizing to more primitive, joyous, playful movement. This guy in particular has inspired me to learn how to play again:

Re posture: One thing that I've found NOT to work for me is to just try to consciously return to correct posture: It feels tense and within moments, the lack of constant attention results in return to the habitual posture. An exercise in patience and discipline, some might say, but I'm fond of gentler approaches, including Lowen's and others' strategy in which freeing muscular armoring should automatically improve posture. But we'll see how it works.

Recently I've come to prefer a firmer surface and nothing to elevate the head while sleeping, partially because of reading many good things about it. Now, if I spontaneously wake up early in the morning, as I usually do, I often feel much more aware and energetic for an hour or two, more than I've ever felt during any time of the day. When I lie on my back, these feelings are sometimes punctuated by pretty intense and scary feelings of being electrified, with humming in the ears, for a few seconds at a time.

I, too, have experienced this awakening game as hard and restless work, for most of the time. So I've moderately successfully tried being more outdoors, meditations of compassion and gratitude, fasting, feasting and whatever else I think might make the ride smoother.
Chuhr Singh Nijjar, modified 8 Years ago at 2/7/15 12:33 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/7/15 12:33 PM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 4 Join Date: 7/23/14 Recent Posts
Edd and Daniel

Thank  you for your posts.  Your help has inspiired me to meditate again with more resolve. Now that I have better understanding of the phenomena I am not pissed off with all the shaking and other energy movements.  The shaking is likely to carry on for a while, I even get it if I meditate lying down, however  my attitude towards it has changed.  I am clearer now that I just observe whatever is happening, as equinamously  as I am able.  


Visser, modified 8 Years ago at 2/8/15 2:27 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 2/8/15 2:22 AM

RE: Shaking Explained

Posts: 2 Join Date: 2/8/15 Recent Posts
I likewise want to say THANK YOU!

I get some shaking too - a lot of rocking when in sitting meditation but also a lot of shaking especially when undergoing anything energetically intense. Happens when giving or recieving energy.

Somehow I stumbled across this post after writing up a big email asking for help from an experienced meditation I'm aquainted with. I was actually asking for help re: being overly sensitive to external energies, but after playing around for the past few days I suspect that this may also be related. For about 7 years now (i.e. since just after my awakening/A+P event but long before I discovered any of this material) I've suffered from extreme body/muscular tension especially in the left side. After re-reading the key parts of MCTB part 3, your post and some experimentation over the last few days I now suspect that not yet having hit stream entry is going to be a big problem for me.

My concenration is still not on par with the insight territory I often find myself in without really trying to even in the lack of a formal practice. Inspired by your post I've just tried to be equinaminous to the pain and tension and observe it being composed of many small inpermanent parts. This has given good results - the best meditations I've had in ages and variable but noticable ability to disippate tension. Also limited success with observing and disapating outside energies as they come in - although I can't keep up with anything of any strength, currently.

It is very helpful to know that someone out there got a path just from observing and working with their pain. Even though this is not really new (on top of what Daniel says in MCTemoticon this clicked it home for me. Also the concept of not trying to sit in correct posture, just lying down and being relaxed (going to have to deal with staying awake though.)

Whilst it would be nice for there to be another way out, right now any way forward is a big win. I've resolved to finally start making some headway on basic concenration skills and crack this thing open. And get my ass out on retreat. Thanks again.

PS: Any thoughts people could offer re: not suffering from/getting rid of "negative" external energies from people/the environment would be much appreciated. I don't really have a choice but to keep wading forward right now and it feels like much more of a burden than it really needs to be.

Would also love to hear more about the circular movement thing. I think I get the general concepts and will try to play around - I think/hope it relates to the move smooth way I used to find myself moving after a really good yoga session. (Less so after the more intense and energetic tantric yoga I've been in recently.)