Freaky Kundalini? A&P or something else?

Jay, modified 6 Years ago at 12/29/15 6:14 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/29/15 5:01 AM

Freaky Kundalini? A&P or something else?

Posts: 11 Join Date: 7/10/15 Recent Posts
I’ve been putting in a lot of practice for the last 2 weeks (3-5 hours per day) in preparation for an upcoming retreat and have been trying to recognise my progress through the maps as I go. On the way I passed through something that seemed like the A&P (uncontrollable shaking and brightness in the visual field, different colours) 

Something that seemed like the dark night (fear, sadness, disturbing images, horrible out of tune jangly vibrations)  thought seriously about taking a break for a few days at that point as it was becoming extremely unpleasant.

Then finally something that seemed like equanimity, where I felt I could literally sit all day, nothing affected me, everything was just bouncing off (but the mind was quite slippery at the beginning, almost lazy and content to just do nothing) then gradually concentration increased until it felt like I was able to take in all sensations, thoughts, feelings, sounds, foreground, background etc.

Then something weird happened, it was almost like I lost consciousness for a second here and there, there were a couple of little blips like that then all of a sudden bang, it was almost like I disappeared for 2-3 seconds and there was a rushing sensation through my head.

When everything started to come back I had a clear sense of knowing that was no ‘me’ no ‘self’ everything was really impersonal and no longer belonged to me, after that I just started laughing and I was very happy and some kind of peacefulness and tranquility swept over my body – like some sort of release.


Then I didn’t really feel like continuing after that… it was like a reset or something. This also happened about 6 months ago when I seemed to be in something like equanimity but the little blips were barely noticeable - or nothing special, I just thought it was a bit weird and continued to practice.

I’ve been meditating for 5 years, almost every day and been on multiple retreats It’s first time I’ve had something like this. I’m practicing Mahasi style noting… sitting and walking.

Is this some sort of a&p event, kundalini or something different? As I’m pretty sure I went through that territory a few days previously...
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tom moylan, modified 6 Years ago at 12/29/15 5:29 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/29/15 5:29 AM

RE: Freaky Kundalini? A&P or something else?

Posts: 896 Join Date: 3/7/11 Recent Posts
hey jay,
given your 5 year practice history, your clear climb through the nanas, and your 'blip' descriptions, it could very well be that you are a sotapanna.

how has your practice been since then?  your concentration?  has your no-self insight remained in any substantial way in your daily life?

do you still plan to retreat?

peace and happy new year

tom
Jay, modified 6 Years ago at 12/29/15 6:37 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/29/15 6:36 AM

RE: Freaky Kundalini? A&P or something else?

Posts: 11 Join Date: 7/10/15 Recent Posts
Hi Tom,

Thanks, I hope you have a great New Year too emoticon

How has your practice been since then?  

Very flat to begin with, it seems like that took all the wind out of my sails – initially big decrease in power and concentration. What I did note though was that I have kind of been on an emotional rollercoaster for a couple of days after whislt going about my day: happy and manic thoughts in the morning, unexplained fear and saddness in the afternoon and then almost a&p like phenomena and energy rushes in the evening whilst sitting at my desk – but all seems to be back to normal and stable as of today


Your concentration? 

I remember it felt a little different today, concentration picked up, the concentrated mind state and the feeling in the body that was not my typical experience becuase I did note that it felt a bit different – but hey meditation varies from session to session? (I have zero knowledge of Jahnas)

Has your no-self insight remained in any substantial way in your daily life?

For a couple of days the depersonalisation was quite strong but seems to have returned to more or less normal today – this could also have been due to the 3-5 hours a day of meditation I have been doing – sometimes things can get a little buzzy

Do you still plan to retreat?

Still planning to retreat. I asked a couple of teachers in the Theravada tradition what had happened  (I don't know them well and they don't know my practice) and they basically just did their best to avoid my question and said something along the lines of – 'just keep noting' 'carry on' 'keep going' etc
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Daniel M Ingram, modified 6 Years ago at 12/30/15 5:19 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 12/30/15 5:19 AM

RE: Freaky Kundalini? A&P or something else?

Posts: 3226 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
So, the question of stream entry is an obvious one if you experienced something like that, and the dDx as we call it (differential diagnosis, meaning things it could possibly or likely be) includes the A&P, some formless something, and other state shifts, as well as even higher paths, if you think you already got stream entry some time before.

The big question is: what changed by it? What holds up? What insights or wisdom did it bring?

Also, can you repeat the event? Can you learn to navigate the stages of insight back up and do it again? That is a great thing to learn to do if it was stream entry, and, if it wasn't stream entry, it is still a great skill to learn, as it will make stream entry much more likely, so, either way, you win.

Enjoy your retreat. It will be interesting to see if the event repeats and what you find different about your practice this time.
Jay, modified 6 Years ago at 1/13/16 12:58 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 1/13/16 12:58 AM

RE: Freaky Kundalini? A&P or something else?

Posts: 11 Join Date: 7/10/15 Recent Posts
The big question is: what changed by it? What holds up? What insights or wisdom did it bring?

Some very brief 'insights' of emptiness or non-self the first couple of times. In the days following this event I observed a greater sense of compassion or sensitivity towards others and a strong desire to not cause others suffering.

Since the retreat: Greater faith or 
belief in the Dharma, at the same time defilements that were not neccesarily apparent seem overwhelming or are seen very clearly (this could of course also be attributed to the enhanced mindfulness and concentration generated on the retreat)

But there does not seem to be any perceivable decrease in suffering...

Also, can you repeat the event? Can you learn to navigate the stages of insight back up and do it again?

Depending on concentration, energy levels etc. the experience repeats anywhere between 3-5 day intervals, depending on concentration, energy levels etc but is mostly less intense.

Each time before it occurs I seem to be in an equanimity like stage.
The eyes start to roll back into the head and sometimes flicker almost in the same way as I perceive to be the beginnings of a seizure like episode, its almost like the mind falls into a black hole. I can still hear, feel, touch etc but the sense of there being an observer seems to disapear along with all thought, analysis, judgement etc - it’s like a return to base consciousness. 

I can't really notice any difference in the practice as it constantly changes and I continue noting whatever phenomenon arises with the same method I've always used.

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Noah, modified 6 Years ago at 1/13/16 3:37 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 1/13/16 3:37 AM

RE: Freaky Kundalini? A&P or something else?

Posts: 1467 Join Date: 7/6/13 Recent Posts
In terms of both my conceptual understanding, and my direct experience, the period following stream entry occurs in two parts:

Review A: Approx. 2 weeks- rapid cycling through the nanas, somewhat torturous in nature, but also rapturous

Review B: Approx. 2 weeks- cycling begins to slow down, to the point of complete stoppage, you can't even locate yourself on the map

There is nothing you can do to make it either longer or shorter.  The longest review I have experienced was 6 weeks.  Hopefully this info helps.
Jay, modified 6 Years ago at 1/13/16 5:00 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 1/13/16 4:37 AM

RE: Freaky Kundalini? A&P or something else?

Posts: 11 Join Date: 7/10/15 Recent Posts
Thanks Noah,

Having difficulty 'locating' myself on the map right now – but I hear that these events could also be experiences of 'hard jhana' or 'formless realms' that could be mistaken for fruitions?

I still have some perception while these episodes occur, I'm sure I still have most of my senses – it's just that there seems to be no one there to interpret them.
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Noah, modified 6 Years ago at 1/13/16 4:48 PM
Created 6 Years ago at 1/13/16 4:48 PM

RE: Freaky Kundalini? A&P or something else?

Posts: 1467 Join Date: 7/6/13 Recent Posts
This is the best description of how fruitions really feel that I have found on the internet.  It is from the old Kenneth Folk Dharma archives:

The first is a momentary discontinuity, a 'blip' in awareness. It is preceded by what feels like a build up of charge between two capacitor plates somewhere in the head (behind the eyes, forward of the pineal gland, about where the pituitary gland is located). There is also the sense of a physical flexing of some structure in the same location. When the charge builds up to a certain threshold, there is a very quick (milliseconds) discharge of energy during which consciousness winks out. After the discharge, there is the sense of the same structure relaxing.


Its good to have high standards for dharma diagnostic criteria, but if yoo set them too high, you start to think everything is "just another a&p", or whatever.  In my experience, the truth about a lot of meditation events, and their outcomes, is that they are not that dramatic, and my sensitivity to their phenomenlogy is frequently not detailed enough to easily match them to typical descriptions, which tend to be more dramatic.  

What has been more valuable is to figure out what came before and after these events, rather than use the description of the event itself.  For instance, if its a fruition, you have to figure out if high eq was your cutting edge.  To do that, you need to separate high eq from mid eq and low eq.  To do that, you need notes from previous days.  Furthermore, if it was a fruition, it will be proceeded by Review A, and getting back to the fruition event by traversing all the nanas, even within a single 30 minute sit, should be no problem.  So think, before and after.

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