Is this high EQ?

Mindfool, modified 6 Years ago at 12/26/15 9:06 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/22/15 11:04 PM

Is this high EQ?

Posts: 13 Join Date: 12/9/15 Recent Posts
Greetings,

I practice mahasi noting practice and sometimes during EQ there is a shift into a different mode of consciousness. It feels like consciousness becomes fuzzy, more vibratory, especially the hearing sense and sometimes the body becomes enveloped by vibrations. Concentration and energy levels sky rocket and sometimes an intense heat envelops the body. Body starts to get very tense and sometimes there might an out of body experience. In a way consciousness feels more spacy, like it's hard to tell where your attention is; it becomes harder to detect the 6 senses, except for thought. I feel that there is a large rift between awareness of the self and the fuzziness. I try my best to just relax, yet thoughts of desire for deliverance, expectation, strategizing, confusion, spaciousness, reassurance and constant reminders to relax appear. I try my best to label these and accept the thoughts as part of the stream of consciousness and let it be. 

Is this high EQ? And if so, how should I best proceed? From what I've read I should simply relax and let the meditation do itself, but if you have any other suggestions, especially what I should subtly be focusing on and what to do when thoughts arise. Thanks.

Edit: After doing some more meditation and a bit of discussion with my meditation teacher, I have come to conclude that  what I'm experiencing is high EQ and it's the build up towards fruition, albeit a miss. 
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tom moylan, modified 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 4:04 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 4:04 AM

RE: Is this high EQ? (Answer)

Posts: 896 Join Date: 3/7/11 Recent Posts
hi tommy,
it could very well be.  vibrations CAN be a big part of equanimity.  it sounds like you know the jargon so a question:  do you experience the other previous stages before you reach htis state?  how long does this take in a usual sitting context?

there is a pretty good description of equanimity here:
http://alohadharma.com/2011/06/21/equanimity/

so...what to do?  in the above link ron says that one should just keep doing what got you there.  some experienced people on this forum suggest that one's attention (noting) should be tuned more to either the 3Cs or to more fundamental factors like "investigation" etc.  this tactic is basically trying to see the sankaras more clearly.

remember that this stage is called "the knowlege of equanimity".  this suggests, to me,  that dispassion is what one is developing here so that clear seeing can emerge when the subtle habits of though patterns and reactions calm down.

best luck
Stuie Charles Law, modified 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 7:06 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 7:06 AM

RE: Is this high EQ?

Posts: 94 Join Date: 3/19/15 Recent Posts
What is your daily practice?
Oochdd, modified 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 8:52 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 8:52 AM

RE: Is this high EQ? (Answer)

Posts: 101 Join Date: 12/16/14 Recent Posts
Hi Tommy,

Sounds like you may be getting close! (which can become another hindrance). 

One phrase that helped me in the past in this stage is one that I picked up I think on the KFD forums: "Throwing it all in the hopper". If you're in high equanimity you can see almost everything arising and passing away pretty smoothly, so the question becomes "what am I leaving out?". And that includes questioning what you are leaving out emoticon Any attitude, expectation, mood that feels like it's part of the solid "you" that's looking at things arising and passing away also needs to be seen as arising and passing away and being part of that whole mish-mash of arising and passing. In other words: throw it all in the hopper. 

Good luck! And keep us posted!

(and enjoy! Especially from my current perspective in the pits of another DN emoticon
Mindfool, modified 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 9:23 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 9:23 AM

RE: Is this high EQ?

Posts: 13 Join Date: 12/9/15 Recent Posts
Thanks, I'll try to keep that phrase in my mind. So it's kind of like doing self-enquiry on any thoughts that pop up? E.g. If expectation pops up, "that's not me, throw it in the hopper." 

You see, when I'm in supposed high EQ, I don't see everything arising and passing smoothly, it's very fuzzy. It feels more like
humming humming humming -> thought (desire for deliverance, wanting, determination, expectation, strategising, confusion, remind myself to relax, energy, space, breath,)  -> Note it -> Repeat. Throw in a bit of investigation. 
Mindfool, modified 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 9:24 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 9:24 AM

RE: Is this high EQ?

Posts: 13 Join Date: 12/9/15 Recent Posts
I'm currently in day 2 of a 5 day self retreat. I've been hitting what I believe to be high EQ, 2-3 times a day. What I've been doing is I spending about 5-15 minutes getting into Jhana or at least some sort of blissful state where I feel relaxed and can feel positive tingling throughout my body. From there I start noting mentally outloud, pace picks up and then I switch to silent noting, whilst investigating the 3C's, and then at some point consciousness starts getting fuzzy / vibratory, feels like something is gently pounding it, and another time it was more of a flickering in the 3rd eye...And from here, I'm kind of confused what to do. I simply try to feel the "humming" as Ron describes. During this stage there a lot of thoughts appear, (but it has been reducing as I enter high EQ again and again) and I note them, try to perceive them as just another impermanent sensantion that's not me and go back to focusing on the humming. I try to "relax and drift" as much as possible.Sometimes I try to investigate mentally out loud. Eventually it feels like I'm approaching nothingness, like consciousness is fading...fading, there was a moment yesterday where consciousness seemed to shrink into a little dot. I don't know if I'm getting really close here. And then a thought disturbs that emptiness / concentration. Also, when I'm approaching this nothingness I might become very tense, breath might be jagged and an intense heat envelops me. It feels like I'm building up to an A&P event ?! After failing, I try to cycle through trying to reach that point again, but it's futile. Opinions ?!
neko, modified 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 5:36 PM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 5:28 PM

RE: Is this high EQ? (Answer)

Posts: 756 Join Date: 11/26/14 Recent Posts
Tommy Ly:
Eventually it feels like I'm approaching nothingness, like consciousness is fading...fading, there was a moment yesterday where consciousness seemed to shrink into a little dot. I don't know if I'm getting really close here. And then a thought disturbs that emptiness / concentration.

This reminds me of my own experience, so I will share how it is for me, in case it may turn out to be useful for you too.

I used to make this mistake: I reached the 7th jhana aspect of High Equanimity, got fascinated with it, and solidified the sensations of Nothingness, crossing over to the jhana side of the experience. That was a dead end (at least from the point of view of getting a Fruition). I had to remind myself to constantly focus on one of the 3C, dukkha at the time, and that usually unlocked a Fruition. Your description makes it look a lot like what I was going through. The gradual feeling of consciousness shrinking might be making Nothingness "harder", or moving to NPNYNP / 8th jhana. Instead, analyse the sensations that make up Nothingness, you might be able to see the little bubbles of stuff Nothingness is composed of. See the 3C in these bubbles to keep vipassanising the process.

For me, getting Fruitions is a lot about balancing effort and just letting the process do itself. It is a bit delicate and tricky to do. To much letting go, and I drift off. Too much effort, and I tense up and the process gets stuck. I would suggest to try alternating effort and trusting the process as needed. Occasionally, getting distracted for a few seconds and remembering to go back to practice is what actually triggers the fruition, which for me is a sign of too much effort: the fruition comes up when I let my guard down, so to speak.

EDIT: This is how I described the mistake at the time, and how I worked around it (I already had SE at the time, and was working on repeat fruitions)

Start from A&P, pass through DN, get into vibrating EQ, near miss, high EQ, pass through infinite space and infinite consciousness*, get to nothingness (7th), so far so good.
Tell myself this is leading to a cessation, so work on the feeling of nothingness, increase it, deepen it, watch a lot of things disappear, cling to all that nothingness... I was solidifying nothingness(!) super hard. Might be the way to get to NPNYNP, but not what I was aiming for...
Restart.
Start from A&P, pass through DN, get into vibrating EQ, near miss, high EQ, pass through infinite space and infinite consciousness*, get to nothingness (7th), so far so good. Wait.

Remember direct experience of how sukha is an upsetting factor, which I had to let go of to move up from 3rd jhana to 4th jhana. Recognise how every single feeling, thought, desire, sense of time... they are all propping up attachment, craving for equanimity itself. Which makes the equanimity of "knowledge of equanimity about formations" kind of incomplete, kind of not real equanimity.
Start to "debunk" each single formation as upsetting and unworthy of attention. 
Notice how "I" reacts by trying to super-solidify something, anything, to prop up this preposterous sense of self. It may have been a feeling of the hand being there all nice and tingly (look, it seems solid, but it is made up of tiny vibrations, meaningless, they are not even touch or an idea, they do not contain a sense of self, sticking to them doesn't satisfy you). Then it may have been the feeling of tension / craving / aversion to keep working (look, if you notice that tension, it is a feeling, it is not you being tense, a sensation cannot watch another sensation). Then it may have been a sound (look, how desperate are "you" to cling to a sound, see?, it's vanished already). All the while "everything" getting more still, darker, more devoid of meaning...

...and then a tiny discontinuity. Something like remembering having blacked out even further, a little bit, for a fraction of a second, while getting a feeling of release, like someone is turning on the lights again, "everything" going back in its place. Kind of like a little bit of work was done.

Discontinuity? Cessation? Not the "big blip" that I experienced at night during retreat: that one was spectacular, like being dead for a fraction of a second**, deeper, somehow perhaps "longer" (however much it makes sense to talk of time during that). But this one was in its right place, in its right time, with its right understanding of the three characteristics.

Actually, I've managed to get a second one repeating all these steps.
I'll see if the experience can be reproduced, with what results.




(Repeated experiments seemed to confirm that those were, indeed, fruitions.)
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Dream Walker, modified 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 6:50 PM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/23/15 6:50 PM

RE: Is this high EQ? (Answer)

Posts: 1478 Join Date: 1/18/12 Recent Posts
Tommy Ly:
What I've been doing -
1) spending about 5-15 minutes getting into Jhana/blissful state  - positive tingling throughout my body.
2) XXXminutes noting mentally outloud
3) XXX minutes switch to silent noting, whilst investigating the 3C's
4) XXX minutes consciousness starts getting fuzzy / vibratory


I modified what you typed...please revisit your sit and break it down a bit by bullet points and timeframes.
What jhana shifts are you getting? What nana shifts and how long is the total sit?
Can you do straight concentration and move up to EQ that way then note til you're in high Eq?
The vibratory state might actually be 3rd jhana aspect of 11th nana. In this case you need to move past that to get to high EQ.

Check out Kenneth Folk's chapter on EQ
contemplative fitness book Knowledge_of_Equanimity_Stage_11
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Daniel M Ingram, modified 6 Years ago at 12/25/15 1:17 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/25/15 1:17 AM

RE: Is this high EQ?

Posts: 3239 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Heat, vibrations, asking if you are in high equanimity: very likely the A&P, as you have now likely guessed if you are in Re-Observation.

Enjoy and practice well,

Daniel