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Losing the sensation?

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Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 6:32 AM
Usually my method is quite simple. I just focus on the sensation of the breath at the nostrils and then I return to it when ever I catch my mind wandering until I reach access concentration --> then Jhana. But sometimes when I try to focus on the breath I just cant feel the sensation at the nostrils anymore when I breathe. When ever I focus and return to the breath its always that "in- out-" sensation that I return to but some days I just cannot feel it at all so it would feel like I have no actual object of the breath to return to when my mind wanders..

Does anyone know what this could be and how to deal with it? I like focusing on this part of the breath and don't really want to change objects or aspects of the breath. But im really wanting to know what could I do to fix this issue here.

Also just incase if anyone assumes that this is happening to me at access concentration its not. Usually some meditation sessions this happens and some they do not.

RE: Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 6:38 AM as a reply to vic.
It is just the breath becoming so subtle that it does not create physical sensations anymore. Quite common. Try concentrating on other sensations around the nose, or, better yet, try to concentrate on the act of concentrating on the nose. That should do the trick. 

RE: Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 6:42 AM as a reply to neko.
Thats the thing, it isn't subtle at all. Even if I try to breathe deeply I just don't feel the sensation there. I just cant lock onto anything. It might just be my mental state of mind, not sure.

RE: Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 6:51 AM as a reply to vic.
Then it might be 5th nana, Dissolution. Particularly if it happens after entering jhana (1st), after jhana feels like it has stabilised (2nd), and after starting to "analyse" the sensations instead of "solidifying" them (A&P II). Does this sound like a description of your pattern?

RE: Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 6:59 AM as a reply to neko.
Its when I first start meditating. I cant reach access concentration without it. To reach jhana I have to have an object to focus on and come back to when my mind wanders off. My object is the sensation at the nostrils, when I focus on it the sensation feels quite solid so its easy to focus on but other times its not because there isn't much feeling there. Its like if you were to feel your hand when its very cold, you won't feel it very easily because of the numb nerves compared to if your hand wasnt very cold.. Thats what im saying, there isn't much of a solid feeling at the nostrils for me to focus at where I can just glue my attention to..

RE: Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 7:19 AM as a reply to vic.
Ok. If it is at the beginning we will rule dissolution out. We are back to square one, I only see three options, from basic to advanced:

1) Choose another sensation like the breath in the abdomen or the breath sensations in the ear-nose canal or at the top of the nose close to the third eye region. Or a candle light. Or a coloured disk. Or a mantra. Or metta.

2) Stay at the tip of the nose and focus on the act of focusing on the tip of the nose when there are no sensations there. You should be able to feel the touch of your attention on the nose.

3) If you have already entered jhana before, just *remember* the jhana. Focus on remembering the jhana.

RE: Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 7:26 AM as a reply to neko.
Thanks and yeah I can see how that would work with "Focusing on jhana" since your recreating the experience in your mind but wouldn't this be an issue if you want to go up into the higher jhanas? Because the first jhana is intense bliss / rapture and the fourth jhana is without those but if you are just focusing on the first jhana your just making the bliss and rapture your object. So how do you move upto the fourth from there?

RE: Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 8:06 AM as a reply to vic.
It is explained in Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha. Free download pdf here:


http://integrateddaniel.info/book/

RE: Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 8:08 AM as a reply to neko.
In a nutshell:

1st -> 2nd: let go of effort
2nd -> 3rd: let go of piti
3rd -> 4th: let go of sukha

RE: Losing the sensation?
Answer
5/26/16 8:25 AM as a reply to vic.
When the touch of the breath disappears, its normal for the yogi to do what your doing now (try and fix it when it's not broken). Its not uncommon (touch disappearing) and is actually a good sign as it means that your at a very subtle object way subtler than the breath, which was a much more gross object. It can reach the stage where you can breath as hard as you like and you wont feel a thing, yet blow some air up there from your mouth and you can feel it easily. Say bye bye to the touch of the breath for now and possibly for ever.                                                            At this point you practice precise aiming, that is keep your attention on the same spot as before. Don't try and make anything happen. It's like being at a cross road or path, and you have to show some restraint and patience allowing the experience to go one way or the other.
If you try and force an experience the mind will become grosser, not subtler. Naturally with a subtler object distractions will be become more prominent and you may encounter some bordom as well.
By not looking for anything in particular it will give you the best chance of seeing the object clearly. If the object becomes the whole body let it happen, or formless, let it happen and so on and so on.
If after a month or two things haven't progressed, you may have to get some advice on how to give it a nudge.