Message Boards Message Boards

Energy Practices

Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies

Toggle
How is feeling of subtle bodies aligned with stages of insight? I mean at what stage is one able to feel other bodies except the physical one? On goenka retreat I reached the dissolution stage and felt what I think was an energetic block in my stomach. I experienced it as feeling a stone in my belly. Are stages of insight aligned with gradually being able to feel the subtle bodies?

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
2/28/16 8:20 AM as a reply to Paul Smith.
howdy,
the term 'subtle bodies' is kinda strange. what i mean is that it could mean several different things.

buddha used the word 'body' in ways that are unusual to our common western idea of a strictly physical phenomena.  since his teaching always fall back to what is "experienced" he used "kaya" or body referring to both the physical (visible) body as well as the felt body as one experiences it during the process of breathing.  that is referrred to as the "breath body" and he encouraged on to contemplate that.

there are concepts of "subtle bodies" in other philosophies which are almost like paralell bodies cohabiting the same space as our physical framework.

how are you using the term?

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
2/28/16 8:28 AM as a reply to Paul Smith.
Hi Paul,

"Stages of insight" sounds like some particular thing, maybe a theravada thing. But if I generalise "stages of insight" simply to "progress in practice", of course there is a direct connection with that and the subtle body, that is, energy body and it's different layers. Progress in insight takes place in the mind which in other terms means energy bodies so of course there is a connection. It is another case, whether one is able to feel or perceive that or not. I suppose different trads differ in the way how they use with this, whether they emphasise using these sensations in their practice or not. This can vary a lot, I think, between different kinds of traditions and methods.

My teacher taught observing one's subtle bodies, in order to further the process of insight. She was great in that, really skillful. I've also studied with many other teachers of meditation, healing, zen art and soft martial arts who have used this approach to varying degrees, I mean dealing with things subtler than physical but of course it differs greatly how these arts relate to insight or not.

An additional note: At very advanced levels of soft or "inner martials arts", as in daitoryu aikijujutsu and ki-aikido, for example, they also teach this but the quality of teaching varies a lot between lineages and teachers. The best of them, however, always have long meditation/spiritual history, in other words, have progressed in their insight. 

Cheers,

Baba Kim Katami 

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
2/28/16 8:48 AM as a reply to tom moylan.
@tom
I meant directly experiencing energetic phenomena, like nadis and their blockages.

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
2/28/16 10:45 AM as a reply to Paul Smith.
Paul Smith:
How is feeling of subtle bodies aligned with stages of insight? I mean at what stage is one able to feel other bodies except the physical one?

For me, after stream entry I noticed I could feel some kind of centers of energy, and noticed they were exactly where the chakras are on some pictures + some additionals on hands, legs etc. I'd also felt different kind of energy-sensations on goenka-retreats and in meditation. But after stream entry it seems to be available pretty much all the time, when I pay attention. This was surprising for me, as I'd thought chakras are mostly just some weird theory I didn't really buy into. Wasn't the first time I've been wrong of course emoticon... But definitely was not something I wasn't expecting to happen.

I have no idea how this is for other people, would be interested to hear experiences. 

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
2/28/16 5:05 PM as a reply to Paul Smith.
Paul Smith:
How is feeling of subtle bodies aligned with stages of insight? I mean at what stage is one able to feel other bodies except the physical one? On goenka retreat I reached the dissolution stage and felt what I think was an energetic block in my stomach. I experienced it as feeling a stone in my belly. Are stages of insight aligned with gradually being able to feel the subtle bodies?

Hi Paul, I've written a short summary of Taoist practices that work with subtle bodies. Take a look a the wiki section. 

Where is actually that stone you mention? Bellow the belly or around the stomach level? I'm sure you're well aware of dantien energetic center, if you're aligned and relaxed enough, it will eventually activate, and that's a good thing to happen. If the stone is at the stomach, first check if your chest isn't stuck and/or ballooned. After correcting the position, try exhaling not through the middle line of your torso, but through the sides, through the ribs. That has helped me.   Also, check if mental chatter, emotions, etc, are triggering that stone. If so, you may want to try B. Vimalaramsi's 6R method, it's quite effective. And of course, you have the "ice-to-water-to-gas" taoist dissolving method I mention in the wiki section, similar to seeing Impermanence in Theravada's Vipassana, though an active method (not pasive like vipassana), and that uses visualization as a helping tool.

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
2/29/16 1:50 AM as a reply to Pablo CEG.
Pablo M+H
Hi Paul, I've written a short summary of Taoist practices that work with subtle bodies. Take a look a the wiki section. 

Where is actually that stone you mention? Bellow the belly or around the stomach level? I'm sure you're well aware of dantien energetic center, if you're aligned and relaxed enough, it will eventually activate, and that's a good thing to happen. If the stone is at the stomach, first check if your chest isn't stuck and/or ballooned. After correcting the position, try exhaling not through the middle line of your torso, but through the sides, through the ribs. That has helped me.   Also, check if mental chatter, emotions, etc, are triggering that stone. If so, you may want to try B. Vimalaramsi's 6R method, it's quite effective. And of course, you have the "ice-to-water-to-gas" taoist dissolving method I mention in the wiki section, similar to seeing Impermanence in Theravada's Vipassana, though an active method (not pasive like vipassana), and that uses visualization as a helping tool.
Oh, I never knew that the is a Wiki-section here.

I used to work/study the four danties (jap. tanden) for some years. However, when my insight progressed I noticed them disappear one by one, from down to up. Now only the fourth one, related to the energy system above the head remains, other three have been consumed by the selfless insight. This has made me thinking how they expain this in taoist or zen tradition, where they emphasize dantiens. I've never seen those people explain this but I'm sure there are folks who have explained it. Do you know Pablo?

One additional thing about working with breath energy/prana. As people here are probably aware of there are two distinct types of energy: 1. pranic energy (vibration easily recognised in the body mind through breathing heavily a few times) and 2. spiritual energy or "energy of awareness". This latter type of energy is cultivated through devotional practices like prayer, loving kindness, tantric guru yoga, mantra and compassion. If you compare pranic energy with energy of awareness, the difference is clear. In order not to get into trouble with pranic energy (which the body can handle to a degree), tantrics combine it with mantras and guru yoga which neutralises the possible negative effects of pranic practices. If the charge of energy of awareness gets too high for the body to handle it just spills over (but doesn't "break the cup" as prana does).

At some point I noticed that after my insight had progressed and the field of awareness had become somewhat expansive, I could do much of breathing practices without mantras (after having done them simultaneously for years) and the pranic charge would immediately transform into energy of awareness by itself. Very interesting but also logical when you think about it. What happens with progress in insight, whether through the means of classical buddhism or tantra, is that the energy body becomes consumed by the body of awareness. In other words, the mind becomes imbued with awareness.

Baba


RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
2/29/16 9:26 AM as a reply to Kim Katami.
Kim Katami:
I used to work/study the four danties (jap. tanden) for some years. However, when my insight progressed I noticed them disappear one by one, from down to up. Now only the fourth one, related to the energy system above the head remains, other three have been consumed by the selfless insight. This has made me thinking how they expain this in taoist or zen tradition, where they emphasize dantiens. I've never seen those people explain this but I'm sure there are folks who have explained it. Do you know Pablo?

I've read that as well somewhere in the web some years ago, but sorry I'm not able to give you links. Bruce Frantzis' method (check his book - Relaxing into Your Being) don't work with dantiens, but with 8 subtle bodies. There's also Lu K'uan Yu's book Taoist Yoga, which works with four dantiens (the higher seems to be Yin Shen and Yang Shen, mentioned as Positive and Negative Principles), but that you end reentering the High Dantien for full enlightenment, which in Taoist traditions is not only Emptyness but the Rainbow Body as well.

Hope that helps.

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
2/29/16 4:18 PM as a reply to Pablo CEG.
Pablo M+H
Kim Katami I used to work/study the four danties (jap. tanden) for some years. However, when my insight progressed I noticed them disappear one by one, from down to up. Now only the fourth one, related to the energy system above the head remains, other three have been consumed by the selfless insight. This has made me thinking how they expain this in taoist or zen tradition, where they emphasize dantiens. I've never seen those people explain this but I'm sure there are folks who have explained it. Do you know Pablo?

I've read that as well somewhere in the web some years ago, but sorry I'm not able to give you links. Bruce Frantzis' method (check his book - Relaxing into Your Being) don't work with dantiens, but with 8 subtle bodies. There's also Lu K'uan Yu's book Taoist Yoga, which works with four dantiens (the higher seems to be Yin Shen and Yang Shen, mentioned as Positive and Negative Principles), but that you end reentering the High Dantien for full enlightenment, which in Taoist traditions is not only Emptyness but the Rainbow Body as well.

Hope that helps.

I wouldn't be suprised if the ancient taoists described this disappearance of dantiens because that's what naturally happens with mind purification, regardless of method or tradition.

About making connection with the highest dantien. I know there to be a particular lineage of hindu yoga which centralises it's practices on this principle. It is Paramahamsa Hariharananda's lineage of kriya yoga. My teacher used to teach the same thing. This gives a great boost for both increase in calmness (shamatha) and purification of mind (vipashyana) but I am not sure how quickly contacting this dantien can neutralise subconscous stuff, you know, the *really thick stuff*. But it's a wonderful principle! I've been doing it daily for a decade now and don't regret it, hah. It is also through this highest dantien or in other the chakras above the head, through which the blessings of gurus in tantric guru yoga come by.

>but that you end reentering the High Dantien for full enlightenment, which in Taoist traditions is not only Emptyness but the Rainbow Body as well.

Yes, there is a connection here. You probably didn't mean that buddhahood (nirmanakaya) is the same as rainbow body (sambhogakaya) but if you did, they aren't.


 



RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
3/7/16 6:11 AM as a reply to Kim Katami.
Rainbowbody is meant literally your body turns into light after death. One of the highest degree is it happens gradually during a life.
In order to judge someones realization degree there are various symptoms. Also Theravada fetters model is meant to take literally.

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
3/7/16 9:12 PM as a reply to Banned For waht?.
I can assure you that Rainbow Body is not about shooting rainbows from your behind but very real meditative attainment. It isn't particularly popular attainment (given complete lack of descriptions of anything like it) but no one said people know how to meditate ^_^
Right. emoticon

I can't say that I've ever achieved multicolored light, but at a very intensive jhana retreat in 2011 I saw my body dissolve into white light. I felt as if I could channel negative emotions out my chakras at the heart and top of the head. I wrote about this in my memoir which I will refrain from posting a link to here in deference to those on the dharma marketplace thread who object to self promotion but if you google my DhO name you'll get to a blog I sometimes post to (though recently not very often due to lack of time) and there you'll find a link.

Anyway, I've been trying to find someone who teaches Tibetan practice who can teach me how to do a rainbow body meditation, but I guess it is a pretty advanced topic and the Tibetan teachers are pretty adamant about starting at the beginning. There were a lot of strange things going on in my head during that retreat, most of which I think I understand the causes of, but the "body of light" as I called in in the memoir, is one I don't. I'm hoping that given a more structured approach through some Tibetan practice I can avoid some of the negative side effects, but we'll see.

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
3/7/16 10:08 PM as a reply to svmonk.
svmonk:
 and there you'll find a link. 
And it looks just like this kind of link, just as an example, of a link....  just to make things easier emoticon

http://www.amazon.com/Silicon-Valley-Monk-Metaphysics-Buddhist-ebook/dp/B00Q46BBR0

Psi

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
3/8/16 2:29 AM as a reply to Paul Smith.
With your "Nadi's"  "Blockages" and "Subtle body" v course, you appear friend to be speaking in terms of Kundalini, or the rising of same.  Very little to please your palette here.  Kundalini Care is one of the better sites you'll find


Blessings to you if you are experiencing a Kundalini event.  May the Devine Mother go easy on you.      The beauty of Shakti, yes?

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
3/9/16 5:08 AM as a reply to svmonk.
Rainbowbody is your body turns into light or lesser form is your body starts to shrink after you die. Also there is noncorruptibility, your body doesn't rot. 
All major religions have lightbody attainment descriptions.

Aging gives similar signs but opposite, body gets weaker, less sensible, smaller, more watery, starts rotting after sometime when breath have left.

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
6/12/16 6:54 AM as a reply to Paul Smith.
Loathe to mention Barry Long again, but dissolving an emotional blockage like "a stone" in the belly, using attention, was definitely in his work. I took it to be one of the centres featured in Taoism so much.

I think the significance of that was that if you could hone your attention on it then your mind would still, like holding a struggling animal down until it gives up, and eventually it goes away forever - though it's a long time since I read that and I don't have the materials anymore. I could never find anything that felt hard like a stone, even though I could sense all sort of energies in my abdomen, including nervousness, heavyness or pleasure. Maybe I took the simile too literally ?

I'd be interested to know if energy philosophies hold there to be one central reservoir of blocked emotion, or whether it is held generally throughout the body. Or whether emotional blocks around the body emanate from one single point in the belly, and can be pushed back to that point, contained and dissolved.

RE: Stages of insight vs feeling subtle bodies
Answer
6/18/16 6:31 AM as a reply to Banned For waht?.
I meditate differently than you. An example from one of previous things i did sometime ago:

There comes urge to do something, then i know there is opportunity to meditate, there is certain amount of times i need to capture that urge and then at some point i notice the urge dissolve and i remain into that special state and then can distibute it to entire body.

When that is done i move to the breath (or whatever else comes), with breathing i open the dark space, what will come from left and engulfs me, no matter if eyes closed or not or if i move my body etc it will come, then i open the gate from right and let the little sparkels into that space that will lead me to other things, there will rise true breath couple times etc
..

That process is different, at the beginning its spread into multiple miniopenings also mini openings will become one movement that you don't have to do the minithings from thereon.

People(also other living things) "sighs", you can arouse it by meditation, what is selfarisen breath.

...more things have led me to realize that maybe i am doing things right and can attain speed of regeneration of cells and according to my state of mind or moods i have they change, what already anyway happens for everyone but its too slow yet.