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Sudden white nothing
1/9/17 12:05 PM
I would really appreciate some perspective on something that happened today. I feel concious of asking a "stupid question" but I wish to avoid making assumpions and sadly I have no teacher to ask and am way too illiterate to guess for myself. Anyway on to what happened:

1. Sat to concentrate on breath

2. Quickly got to access concentration (after a week of jetlag + caffeine withdrawl and no concentration of any sort)

3. After about 5 minutes of this I began to feel my heart pounding -- not faster, just suddenly it was much more noticeable. I followed this feeling to my circulatory system where I felt the blood flowing with seeming precision in my neck, wrists, arms, legs, constricted where my legs were folded, etc. I felt a sudden sharp awareness of everything. People in the room outside of mine began making a ruckus but it did not disturb me. The feeling was very good, a tingling pulse everywhere in an unreasonably high definition, as though I could detect a blood vessel and its direction anywhere in my body (not at all claiming this is an accurate feeling). It is as if there is a physical magic within. This has happened to me a good number of times before.

4. I tried to pick this feeling apart for about 10 minutes. Then I felt a sudden bump in intensity of feeling right in my heart. It was as if there was a wellspring right under it and by reflex I automatically covered it again. So I went back to try to find it again, "looking" right at my heart. Again it felt as though it enlarged and I suddenly felt transported in connection with this feeling.

5. Suddenly everything was very white and blank and quiet, as though I was wrapped in white on the top of a snowy mountain. It felt like nothing could shake me. I could hear all the people playing and fighting and making jokes, but muted, I felt neither personally involved nor separate from them nor from the wind through the window or the feeling of the cushion or the light or anything.

6. It felt extremely grave. And then all of a sudden it was like being tickled and I started laughing uncontrollably for no reason (not in response to anything). Then that passed. It was like complete, quaquaversal silence.

RE: Sudden white nothing
1/9/17 12:50 PM as a reply to housecrow.
I'm pretty new myself, but I think a general answer is "It's nice to have cool experiences, but keep sitting."  Which is a little unsatisfying, but sobering.

RE: Sudden white nothing
1/9/17 1:15 PM as a reply to Geoff.
Oh, I am not asking if I should continue meditating or not or if anything grandiose was achieved. I am asking what the proper words are for what was experienced so that I can gain context and information.

RE: Sudden white nothing
1/9/17 5:20 PM as a reply to housecrow.
This kinda sounds like an A&P event.

RE: Sudden white nothing
1/9/17 9:44 PM as a reply to housecrow.
Hi housecrow,

You don't mention how long the focused but completely unaware of your surroundings period lasted, but it sounds like first jhana to me.


RE: Sudden white nothing
1/10/17 2:27 AM as a reply to housecrow.
To confuse matters further, I will disagree with Chris and svmonk, and say that it sounds like Knowledge of Equanimity to me emoticon 

I guess you will have to see if and how the event repeats emoticon 

RE: Sudden white nothing
1/10/17 6:25 AM as a reply to housecrow.

i can only compare this experience to one i had many moons ago at a goenka retreat.  at some point i could follow a point of concentration around the inside of my body, up the spinal canal etc.  very precisely.

i have ordered this to the 3Cs early A&P.  as daniel points out in his book, it is a massive jump in concentration and focus, a real and noticable ramp up in the toolset you are developing with each sit.

the jump into the blissful white state I would also characterize as A&P and could have been the A&P event.

if this is true, you may notice that in your next sits you will find that your ability to focus is not as sharp as it has been or that you are just not as motivated to sit as you have been.  don't let yourself be programmed by this thought though.  just try to sit as per usual and report back.  try to go for deep concentration again (and again and again).

and by the way..i've always like the maxim that the only dumb question is the unasked one.


RE: Sudden white nothing
1/10/17 11:04 PM as a reply to neko.
Hi neko,

The reason I said first jhana is because I thought the white nothing was the counterpart sign (nimitta) . My experience is that when the concentration object is in the abdomen, like the heart or the breath at the abdomen, the nimitta covers the whole body whereas if you use the breath at the nose, the nimitta is focused at the nose as a smallish dot.

But I am not an expert at the maps, so...

RE: Sudden white nothing
1/11/17 5:50 AM as a reply to housecrow.
1,2- you can get by coming aware and stay there.
3- hear the heart bounding to the point it is dominating
4- try to smooth it or get syncronized, the transportation feeling is in the background or a ground on what the heart is bounding.
5-  simple blackout, disconnection of awareness. An andrealine rust or the awake energy in body, or scare feeling after getting scared a bit.
6- perfect cool awareness, ready to attack(or counterattack) and make a good precision move without much timelag or brainlag.