Discussion Forum Discussion Forum

Practices Inspired by Actualism

AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode

Toggle
AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Daniel M. Ingram 6/23/10 3:29 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Brian . 6/23/10 5:52 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Jeff Grove 6/23/10 5:56 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode My Fragile Ego 6/23/10 10:40 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 6/24/10 9:20 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode aaron . 6/24/10 3:48 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode My Fragile Ego 6/24/10 5:15 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode aaron . 6/24/10 6:19 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode My Fragile Ego 6/25/10 10:57 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 6/25/10 3:24 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Anon Anon 6/25/10 9:52 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode aaron . 6/25/10 8:52 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Daniel M. Ingram 6/25/10 4:00 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Graeme M. 6/25/10 4:17 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Yadid dee 6/25/10 4:27 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 6/25/10 8:56 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 6/25/10 1:26 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Change A. 6/26/10 1:05 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Ruth Laura Edlund 6/25/10 9:34 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode aaron . 6/25/10 5:20 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Daniel M. Ingram 6/25/10 8:50 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem 11/3/10 6:28 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Dannon F 1/14/13 7:50 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Tarver  1/14/13 8:30 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Dannon F 1/14/13 9:23 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Felipe C. 1/14/13 9:56 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Dannon F 1/14/13 11:24 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Felipe C. 1/14/13 11:24 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Dannon F 1/14/13 11:37 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Felipe C. 1/14/13 11:57 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Dannon F 1/14/13 12:04 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Felipe C. 1/14/13 12:24 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Dannon F 1/14/13 12:58 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Felipe C. 1/14/13 1:20 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Dannon F 1/14/13 10:47 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Ruth Laura Edlund 6/24/10 10:13 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode K B 6/25/10 1:45 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Daniel M. Ingram 6/25/10 4:30 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Anon Anon 6/25/10 5:39 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode K B 6/25/10 9:03 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode My Fragile Ego 6/25/10 10:43 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Jeff Grove 6/26/10 3:00 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 6/26/10 4:08 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Jeff Grove 6/26/10 6:59 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 7/16/10 2:38 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Change A. 7/16/10 3:19 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Trent . 7/16/10 3:37 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Change A. 7/16/10 7:12 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode K B 6/26/10 3:13 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Jeff Grove 6/26/10 11:57 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode My Fragile Ego 6/26/10 7:17 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Change A. 6/26/10 12:53 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 6/27/10 3:36 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 6/27/10 2:56 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Change A. 6/27/10 8:24 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Trent . 6/27/10 5:14 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Luciano de Noeme Imoto 6/29/10 7:38 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 7/16/10 3:05 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Change A. 7/16/10 10:57 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Jeff Grove 7/17/10 10:51 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 7/17/10 6:09 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Neil Hughes 7/17/10 11:29 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 7/18/10 2:16 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 7/16/10 1:55 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Change A. 7/16/10 2:29 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 7/17/10 5:32 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Change A. 6/26/10 9:13 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov 6/29/10 4:50 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Luciano de Noeme Imoto 6/29/10 7:02 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 6/29/10 7:52 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Steph S 6/29/10 11:22 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Trent . 6/29/10 3:31 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Steph S 6/30/10 3:11 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Luciano de Noeme Imoto 6/29/10 2:01 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Florian 6/29/10 3:02 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Luciano de Noeme Imoto 6/29/10 4:50 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Florian 6/30/10 12:11 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Luciano de Noeme Imoto 6/30/10 9:14 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Florian 6/30/10 9:46 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Luciano de Noeme Imoto 6/30/10 1:17 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Trent . 6/29/10 3:05 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 7/1/10 2:36 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov 7/2/10 4:38 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Luciano de Noeme Imoto 7/1/10 9:07 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 7/16/10 3:16 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov 7/16/10 8:34 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 7/16/10 1:23 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Daniel M. Ingram 7/4/10 6:13 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode First Last 7/4/10 2:40 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Daniel M. Ingram 7/4/10 6:17 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Luciano de Noeme Imoto 7/5/10 4:30 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode ManZ A 7/14/10 9:00 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode My Fragile Ego 7/15/10 12:46 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Christian Müller 7/5/10 7:01 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Yair Hilu 7/21/10 4:01 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Trent . 7/21/10 5:04 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Dark Night Yogi 8/1/10 8:04 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 8/6/10 4:00 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 9/23/10 11:30 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Daniel M. Ingram 9/25/10 2:00 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 9/25/10 2:52 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 9/25/10 9:23 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 9/25/10 12:57 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode rich s 9/25/10 7:13 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode rich s 9/25/10 7:36 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Adam F. 9/26/10 2:53 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode cao cao cao 9/26/10 4:04 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Seraphina Wise 9/27/10 12:27 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode mico mico 9/28/10 8:08 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 10/6/10 1:42 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 10/7/10 11:24 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode tarin greco 10/11/10 10:30 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Christian Ballhaus 10/12/10 11:03 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 10/16/10 6:16 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 9/26/10 10:29 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Adam F. 9/26/10 12:51 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Yadid dee 9/26/10 2:00 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Daniel Johnson 9/30/10 6:13 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Bruno Loff 10/1/10 3:24 AM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Daniel Johnson 10/1/10 3:04 PM
RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode Michael Zaurov 10/6/10 2:10 AM
This is a tentative reply to some topics that have been raised on various threads recently.

As I am sort of in and out of two modes of perceiving reality and it is not always easy to tell exactly when the one has faded and the other returns, I will post with hesitancy and an inability to draw definite conclusions, but a few of my many possibly transient impressions at this point having experimented with what Tarin and Trent and Ricky are talking about are:

1) There is something to what they are saying.

2) I seem to find two modes that are quite different:

a) PCE mode is remarkable in its simplicity, poise, richness, directness. When in it, anything else seems like an absurdity, coarse, crude, distorted, while the PCE mode seems full and complete in itself. Words like dignity and completion come to mind. It seems free of cycles and stages and stages, but as it fades at this point for me, exactly how true that is is hard to be sure of, as the tendency is to explore it in a way that causes it to regress to Cycle Mode.

b) Cycle mode is the other mode, and it involves ñanas, jhanas, changing perspectives, highs, lows, emotions of some seemingly-empty-yet-still-happening sort and an attention wave of some sort that causes a perceptible distortion, however empty, subtle and centerless. Now, some of those cycles and stages and states are quite good, Pure Land jhanas are still great, NS is amazing, and there are other interesting and compelling phenomena, but the downside is that things that are not good can also at times arise in some way that is different before I was at this level of practice but not clean like PCE mode is. In short, cycle mode possesses an inherent quality of vulnerability that arises dependent on that quality of perceiving things.

3) When in PCE mode, nearly everything Trent, Tarin and Richard say makes perfect sense. The corollary of this is that when in Cycle mode I think in terms of maps, stages and what memories there are of the PCE are a frustrating reminder of the defects in this way of perceiving things and yet seem unreal or, at worst, like some delusional pipe dream, as it seems to many here, and when in that mode it is very easy to understand that point of view, as it strikes me that way as well.

4) Oscillating some number of times/day or week between these is very disorienting, and talking to me in one mode or the other would seem like talking to two completely different practitioners, as my mode of relating to reality and the underlying paradigms are so dependent on which mode I am in that the difference is amazing even to me who has seen it change so many times between the two. This makes commentary difficult, as depending on which mode I am in I might say very different things. As I write this I am probably in cycle mode, in case anyone is wondering.

5) I have identified a few ways at this point that seem to cause the chance of getting in PCE mode to go up, described here in a mix of AF and vipassana-esque terms. None are guarantees at this point.

a) Notice the attention wave itself and how looking at anything distorts the thing itself. Notice how attention itself filters out substantial portions of the field of what manifests. Doing this long and well enough at a high level taking it to the level of seeming like a spacial distortion eventually can cause PCE mode to arise. This is the least pleasant but the most revealing and has resulted in the longest duration of PCE-like mode when I can pull it off.

b) Go through the cycles of insight at the level of an arahat and after a Fruition reflect on a memory of previous PCE modes, which will sometimes cause PCE mode to arise shortly thereafter in a sudden flash that tends to fade as the attention wave sets in again.

c) Turn into the sensuous nature of this moment, "tripping" on the textures and qualities of the visual field, the auditory field, the contact of anything with the skin, in an open, really engaged way that attempts to lose one's self in the beauty and perfection and satisfying simplicity of just this in the most profound and yet direct way. This really is the advice to stop and smell the roses taken to the highest degree one is capable of. This is the most pleasant of the ways in. It is much easier with the eyes open than eyes closed, so far, though this is getting easier eyes closed.

I have spent a lot of time when not in PCE mode reflecting on its vipassana correlations, but none really work as they are different. Vipassana stages and stages are the result of the attention wave causing the various phase aspects and selective focusing and tuning that results from an attention wave. PCE mode, having either no or a very subtle attention wave in that way, seems free of the cycles and stages and states and tuning in that regard, which is remarkable in and of itself and seems at this point to point to something very important and useful.

As I am still in the middle, trying to get PCE mode to stick and stay, I am probably not in the best place to draw firm conclusions, but I submit this as some notes from the path such that perhaps people later will draw something useful from them or reject aspects of them as being idiosyncratic or confused and thus help my own practice.

I would be interested in Tarin and Trent commenting on how they progressed through their transition and what strategies and advice they found most helpful along the way from the one to the other.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/23/10 5:52 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Sorry if this is a naive question, could you clarify what you mean by "attention wave?"

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/23/10 5:56 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
c) Turn into the sensuous nature of this moment, "tripping" on the textures and qualities of the visual field, the auditory field, the contact of anything with the skin, in an open, really engaged way that attempts to lose one's self in the beauty and perfection and satisfying simplicity of just this in the most profound and yet direct way. This really is the advice to stop and smell the roses taken to the highest degree one is capable of. This is the most pleasant of the ways in. It is much easier with the eyes open than eyes closed, so far, though this is getting easier eyes closed.

I have been playing with this for a while as well and this description matches my experince especiallly the visual field

"smell the roses" really hits the nail on the head

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/23/10 10:40 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Hi Daniel

I know exactly what you mean about investigating the PCE and causing it to regress or slip away as a result. It's very frustrating but I attest that it can be overcome by identifying the triggers that cause the PCE to slip away - they're the same triggers that cause the PCE to not happen at any time.

I have found the instructions on the page below extremely useful in helping me bring on PCEs at will. Btw, in case it is not clear, when experiencing apperception one is in a PCE. They're basically two terms for the same thing.

I recommend printing the following page out and studying it until you have a really strong experiential handle on everything covered. Just today I was re-reading it yet again, finding new gems, and thinking it should be re-entitled "The Actualist Manifesto" because it's so succinct and powerful. The information on that page is very practice-oriented, which I think you will like.

http://actualfreedom.com.au/richard/articles/attentivenesssensuousnessapperceptiveness.htm

To help break the grip of the habit of affective / emotive experience that causes us continually slip back into what you term 'cycle mode', I recommend a couple of things that have made a big difference for my practice. Previously I was spending 99% of my day in cycle mode / everyday experience, and 1% of my day if I was lucky in brief moments of clarity that all too quickly slipped away. Just recently this has dramatically reversed as a result of these changes.

1. Read all the guidance on the following page about Is it Silly or Sensible? The opportunity is to replace the habitual use of emotive Right / Wrong, Fair / Unfair by using Silly / Sensible as your axis for appraisal. We have to consciously choose apperception over affectation, and reinforce it enough to become a new habit. It's appraising everything that comes up in our life through an affective system of judgement that causes emotions to spin up and linger on after the event.

That page also talks about being friends with yourself which is great advice, as being tough on oneself is a very common trigger to feel bad. I've taken that on board now and have found it made a big difference to prolonging excellence and apperception.

http://actualfreedom.com.au/richard/audiotapeddialogues/sillyorsensible.htm

2. Develop "Pure Intent". Set the standard for your moment to moment experience of life to at least good and if possible perfection (i.e. the PCE). Commit to root out every last obstacle standing in the way of achieving Actual Freedom and enjoying perfection each moment again. Be tough with yourself about whether you're experiencing excellence or a full PCE - if it's not perfect, it's not good enough. It can be very easy to get to feeling good or excellent and stop there. That derailed my progress for quite a while.

A final note, I'm still trying to get it done, so while I hope this may be useful, I recommend the advice of the actually free over mine any day - I've been wrong too many times before!

Craig

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/24/10 9:20 AM as a reply to My Fragile Ego.
The idea that what these guys are about is somehow new seems absurd to me. "Attentiveness and Sensuousness and Apperceptiveness" = "Mindfulness, Concentration and Equanimity." Actual Freedom is probably "the way the realized mind stays," as described in the mahamudra and dzogchen traditions.

(Edit) more relevantly to this post:

(I) Could you be more extensive and detailed in describing how Cycle Daniel looks at a PCE Daniel and vice versa?

(II) specifically, could you be more thorough and detailed with regards to how, in the opinion of the Cycle Daniel, the PCE state which you can remember seems like a "pipe dream," and how, in the opinion of the PCE Daniel, the cycle state (which I guess you can also remember) seems absurd?

(III) I would also like to know how the cycle Daniel would respond to the PCE Daniel's claims that the Cycle state is absurd. And how the PCE Daniel responds to Cycle Daniel's opinion that PCE is a pipe dream! heh emoticon you see what I'm getting at?... I'd really like to arrive at an unbiased description of what happens in one state and the other, and you seem to be the only person who is currently capable of delivering this.

(IV) It wasn't very clear, but I guess that the affective experience is gone in your PCE? I.e. that it matches the AF description completely in this point. In retrospect (in Cycle mode), is it really that you had no emotions, or simply that the bliss was so great that nothing could dampen it?

(V) Could you figure out exactly how to trigger the Cycle mode from within the AF mode, i.e., exactly what happens when you go back to Cycle mode, and maybe even how one could trigger cycle mode on purpose? Basically I'm asking if you can make a point similar to number 5 in your post, a method for actively putting the PCE state "down" instead of "up." This is a question of meditative technique.

Thanks Daniel, once again, for being so thorough, technical and to the point. It's nice to have someone talk about AF and PCE's without having to take the nonsense. I have collected at least a few concrete examples of nonsense that people in PCE's engage in.

So I'm asking you please don't rush into getting an established PCE before you have investigated both sides of the matter as thoroughly as you have always done. I understand that this might not be very pleasant, but think of the fans ("for the benefit of myself and all sentient beings" and all that emoticon)

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/24/10 10:13 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Please say more more about this, Daniel, when you can.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/24/10 3:48 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Hi Bruno,

bruno:"The idea that what these guys are about is somehow new seems absurd to me. "Attentiveness and Sensuousness and Apperceptiveness" = "Mindfulness, Concentration and Equanimity." Actual Freedom is probably "the way the realized mind stays," as described in the mahamudra and dzogchen traditions."

Aaron: Did you happen to read the "Attentiveness and Sensuousness and Apperceptiveness" article? Sensuousness is certainly not Concentration and there is little(if any) evidence that Apperceptiveness is Equanimity(in the Buddhist sense). Mindfulness certainly involves Attentiveness, but the intent/goal is different(which is not a small point).


mahamudra and dzogchen traditions do not report(that I'm aware of) of a emotionless condition. See

http://www.dharmaweb.org/index.php/Venerable_Tenzin_Palmo:_The_Second_Teaching

for example. "Sometimes people have the idea that very realized beings will be completely blank and emotionless and sort of cold because they are so detached and that they see the inherent emptiness of everything, so therefore they don't react. But I think any of us who has met a genuinely realized being will see that, on the contrary, they're the most alive people we have ever met. Many great lamas and other teachers who have done much practice are completely awake and therefore they are more vivid in their personalities, more clear, more ready to laugh or to cry, even more than ordinary beings. But the emotion isn't sticky.

You don't need to worry about becoming actually free from practicing yoga, vipassana, meditation....ect. To my knowledge all 9-10 actually free people got that way by employing what has come to be called the actualism method. They either did not do closed eyed/sit down meditation or they stopped practicing meditation on their way to actual freedom. So, if you ever decide actual freedom is something you want you will presumably have to go a similar route(ie stop meditating and practice some version of the actualism method. You can do this either from one of the "four paths" of Buddhism or from wherever you are now. If you would rather be enlightened just keep on with the ancient meditation methods and you'll steer clear of actual freedom.

I know dzogchen/mahamudra can be tempting to be seen as relating to an actual freedom for someone whose cognitive bias/beliefs may have sympathy with one of the following 1) all teachings lead to similar/same place and 2) there is nothing new under the sun. Those are biases I've had as well. I think Daniel's, Trent's and Tarin's writings pretty clearly show "1" is false(as does a clear eyed study of the actual freedom writings and the enlightened writings). As to "2", while I've been searching for evidence that others have been actually free before Richard, I've so far failed to find any clear examples. It would be great if there were so we could learn from how they got there(even Richard has stated he'd like to find examples to compare notes with) but at this point it appears that if anyone lived in a actual freedom before Richard that they either did not record it or described it in a way that doesn't make it obvious.

As far as "I have collected at least a few concrete examples of nonsense that people in PCE's engage in"........being either enlightened or actually free does not make one perfect(cognitively). While Daniel is one of the most open-minded, openly enlightened people to consider/experiment with actualism/PCE even he has said some pretty obviously "nonsense" things about it from time to time(obvious to one who has a decent grasp both intellectually and experientially of the actualism method). That's just being human. emoticon Thankfully for the readers of this board, Daniel has the integrity to examine his views/beliefs in a honest and sincere way. Apparently that's a pretty rare thing. emoticon

My intent in writing this is not to change your mind about anything but more to put your mind at ease. It's your choice on what path to take and when(different method-different results). Trent, Tarin and Daniel's descriptions of the PCE are more than enough carrot. emoticon One nice thing about the "wide and wondrous path" to an actual freedom is that it does not have cycling dark night type stuff to go through(though, if you practice "actualism" while continuing to practice vipassana/meditation it could. I think Craig has had some experience with this). I'm just sayin.....emoticon

Cheers

Aaron

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/24/10 5:15 PM as a reply to aaron ..
Hi Aaron

Great post! Really well put. Something you mentioned:

aaron .:
One nice thing about the "wide and wondrous path" to an actual freedom is that it does not have cycling dark night type stuff to go through(though, if you practice "actualism" while continuing to practice vipassana/meditation it could. I think Craig has had some experience with this). I'm just sayin.....emoticon


I believe my previous experience of dark night, occurring while interested in both enlightenment and actual freedom, to have been a result of the meditative practices I was undertaking and the way attention was being paid to awareness replete with emotions. As Tarin once put it "Dissolve the ego and the heart rules the roost".

Since I stopped meditating, dropped all interest in enlightenment and replaced it with pure intent, awareness of cycling has really fallen away to the background. About the only thing I'm aware of is very occasionally witnessing a fruition occur (three blips while I'm doing something). Vibrations are there as I write this but I haven't paid any attention to them in months. I've got bigger fish to fry emoticon

Craig

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/24/10 6:19 PM as a reply to My Fragile Ego.
Hey Craig,

I also enjoyed your previous post by the way(and Daniel's was fascinating to say the least).

Nice update. That makes sense to me(and I recall us talking about murky intent/meditating/interest in enlightenment on the other lists). Glad that you've figured it out and are doing what you need to do to get the results you want. What finaly led you to drop your interest in enlightenment and shoot directly for actual freedom? Was it the fact that there was finally confirmation that it could be repeatable?


Cheers

Aaron

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 3:24 AM as a reply to aaron ..
aaron, I don't have bias number 1. With respect to bias number 2:

Basically richard describes AF as this: (1) remove "self", (2) remove "Self" (3) done. Now you're telling me that after 2000+ years of doing number (1), and we're talking many thousands of practitioners, quite a few of which have dedicated their entire life to secluded practice, no-one has ever come up with doing number (2)... oh, please!... My guess is one will find the description of such a state properly integrated with the previous teachings, framed in the same language (likely a religious language), etc...

I think it is just reasonable common sense (which I have the bias/belief should appeal to an AF supporter) that with 2000+ years of meditation research, the idea of Richard that has finally "got it" can be called borderline egomaniac.

Is it surprising that the same person who came to this conclusion now has his own spiritual movement? Is it surprising that people gather around a guru who claims to finally "get it"? But I'm sure that "AF is not just like any other spiritual movement"... Like you said, Daniel's ability to examine his views/beliefs in a honest and sincere way is a pretty rare thing emoticon

I have complimented him, and heard him being complimented on this regard numerous times. That's exactly why I asked him, almost in a pledge, to be as thorough and no-bullshit as he as always been so far. Of course, when one is on the eye of the hurricane, as Daniel is right now, this is no easy task.

So I suggest both of you encourage him to really investigate both sides of the matter, since you are certainly unwilling to do so, instead of urging him on with "pure intent" and patting each other in the back.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 4:00 AM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:
The idea that what these guys are about is somehow new seems absurd to me. "Attentiveness and Sensuousness and Apperceptiveness" = "Mindfulness, Concentration and Equanimity." Actual Freedom is probably "the way the realized mind stays," as described in the mahamudra and dzogchen traditions.


It is interesting the degree to which the correlations seem irrelevant to me in the face of the actual experiment itself, which has become all consuming in its seeming relevance as compared to talk of it and speculation about how these things might line up with anything at all.

Bruno Loff:
(Edit) more relevantly to this post:

(I) Could you be more extensive and detailed in describing how Cycle Daniel looks at a PCE Daniel and vice versa?


Alright: Cycle Daniel looks at PCE Daniel with skepticism, great envy, occasionally paranoia, a mix of other emotions. PCE Daniel is very happy just being PCE Daniel and does its best to remain so.

Bruno Loff:
(II) specifically, could you be more thorough and detailed with regards to how, in the opinion of the Cycle Daniel, the PCE state which you can remember seems like a "pipe dream," and how, in the opinion of the PCE Daniel, the cycle state (which I guess you can also remember) seems absurd?


Cycle Daniel, being able only to draw on memory and also yet being more keenly aware with each passing trip back to Cycle Mode of how much better PCE mode seems on retrospect, is generally quite keen to get back to PCE mode, as there is this amazing gravity to the PCE, it being exceedingly compelling at this point. However, from Cycle Mode, it seems either unattainable, preposterous, a distortion, a trap, the rantings of madmen, or that it must correlate with something that Cycle Daniel knows, such as Pureland Jhanas, or some other such attainment, all of which I can assert at this point are false so far as I can tell. I can't walk around in full-on Pureland Jhanas, but I have managed to work whole shifts in something which seems to be the PCE mode, which, when I can do it, is simply remarkable in its ease, clarity and freedom from the usual stresses of work, and is even more remarkable considering the work I do. For instance, it kicked in for no apparent reason about half way through the shift I worked tonight and it still seems to be happening, much to my delight.

PCE Daniel does everything it can to try to figure out how to stay in PCE Mode, which is part of the problem, as this sort of trying done wrong causes Cycle Mode to recur, though as time passes and the temptations as I will call them arise, the thing is getting better and better at staying in PCE mode, though there is still instability. I currently feel that I am in PCE mode, as there is this fantastic alertness, a complete lack of fatigue despite having just gotten off work and driven home after a long shift at the end of a long run of shifts, and I feel this tingling through the back of my neck and skull that seems to be one of the PCE's hallmarks as best I can tell. At least, I have come to strongly associate the two.

Bruno Loff:
(III) I would also like to know how the cycle Daniel would respond to the PCE Daniel's claims that the Cycle state is absurd. And how the PCE Daniel responds to Cycle Daniel's opinion that PCE is a pipe dream! heh emoticon you see what I'm getting at?... I'd really like to arrive at an unbiased description of what happens in one state and the other, and you seem to be the only person who is currently capable of delivering this.


Cycle Daniel is having a harder and harder time coming up with anything good to say to the PCE that holds any weight at all with the Dual Daniels. In fact, were Cycle Daniel and the jhanas and ñanas and cycles and all that never to arise again, so much the better. This is quite a claim from someone who has spent so much time cultivating and mastering those things, and even writing it I find it somewhat surprising, but this is my current opinion as I write this, perhaps subject to change at a later time. PCE Daniel need merely respond to Cycle Daniel with the PCE itself, which is all the argument that is needed at this point. I am not sure this is an unbiased description, but it is an accurate appraisal of what is happening with me at the moment as best I can describe it.

Bruno Loff:
(IV) It wasn't very clear, but I guess that the affective experience is gone in your PCE? I.e. that it matches the AF description completely in this point. In retrospect (in Cycle mode), is it really that you had no emotions, or simply that the bliss was so great that nothing could dampen it?


Hmmmm.... This is tricky territory here and something that the fully AF kids might to better with. Here we get into the correlation between the PCE and AF. Given that I can't ever be sure that when the PCE arrises that it is AF or not, as I don't know if it will end, and given that I can't be sure exactly how the PCE correlates with AF, or whether AF is something somewhat beyond just the PCE, as I believe is hinted at in various places, I should just go with what I seem to experience in the PCE.
This is complicated by an annoying fact: that the transition into PCE is dramatic, clear, obvious, profound in its simplicity and directness. The same definitely cannot be said for the fade back to Cycle Mode, and here I run into difficulty that I have been struggling with for 4 months and is part of the reason I have refrained from much comment before I had been in PCE mode many times.
As I can't field test the thing completely and in a bomb-proof way, as so far every PCE has faded back, I cannot tell exactly where the one ends and the other begins, and so when, say, nervousness or fear or some other such thing arises at some point, is that by definition Cycle Mode, or are there such things in the PCE? At this point, I will tentatively say this: it seems that the PCE performs largely as described, and is remarkable is its freedom from the affective feelings that AF dogma goes to such lengths to revile, but the limitations above apply, and I can't really be sure I am correct in my interpretations without more experimentation and probably AF itself. That is the best I can do at the moment.

Bruno Loff:
(V) Could you figure out exactly how to trigger the Cycle mode from within the AF mode, i.e., exactly what happens when you go back to Cycle mode, and maybe even how one could trigger cycle mode on purpose? Basically I'm asking if you can make a point similar to number 5 in your post, a method for actively putting the PCE state "down" instead of "up." This is a question of meditative technique.


Just the thought of making Cycle Mode return makes this PCE-enjoying Daniel cringe, in all honesty, as getting into PCE mode is such a strange thing, and the fear is that it will not arise again, despite its doing so somewhat regularly at this point and sometimes with surprising duration, at least until I sleep. Strangely, I never wake up in PCE mode, only Cycle Mode, not sure why, and I have to reattain it at some point during the day.

In terms of how it is done: this is easy: turn to emotions, nervousness, unhappiness, desire, fear, cycles, fantasies, jhanas, ñanas, any of that and the like, and the PCE vanishes instantly like a mirage.

More tidbits:

Ways to get into a PCE:
a) Simply incline the mind that way by memory or desire, forget about it, and see what happens. Sometimes this is enough.
b) Ground awareness in the physical realm solidly, openly, clearly to the exclusion of anything else as object. This also sometimes works. The phrase "flesh and blood body" so often used in AF dogma is exactly what I mean.
c) Tune into the sense of tingling up the base of the neck and into the skull in a way that is yet wide open, similar to Equanimity in focus but more directly physical, even if the tingling is not there. I used to get this feeling just briefly after completing a new path cycle sometimes, but now can feel it for hours during a PCE or something like one.
d) Should any hint of any emotive feeling at all arise, use vipassana-like technique with a wide-open physical-sphere-oriented awareness to track down the offending trigger ruthlessly in this physical sense sphere to its end again and again. I have found this more reliable for figuring out how to avoid the PCE ending than for getting into one, sort of like work done for future reference of what not to do, but it is good work to do at times, I think.

There was a post by C Marti over at KFD about why I might be into this seemingly strange pursuit, as I guess it would seem quite strange to someone who hasn't seen the PCE Mode often or identified what it is and how it is not Cycle Mode and the differences between them, and he speculated as to whether or not I was dabbling, doing it on a bet, trying to please my friends, experimenting just to explore, or some such things. Nothing could be further from the truth. I am doing this because the PCE Mode is so exceedingly compelling and vindicating that all the rest seems like some odd nightmare by comparison, and I mean that literally as well as metaphorically. I would be surprised if I were mistaken, given that the longer the PCE Mode lasts and the more frequently it arises, the more absolutely I am convinced that this is all exactly the right thing to be doing. However, when Cycle Daniel returns, if he does, he might have some doubts mingled in with his frantic attempts to get back to this mode, which is tragic, as from this point of view it is so obviously right here and so clear.

I should add that I am very happy that I trained the way I did, that I mastered what I mastered from an insight and concentration point of view, as I don't think that I personally could have seen what the PCE is or gotten into it as often as I have or for as long or as clearly or perceived just what the value of the PCE is or the comparison with other options had I not done all that work, but at this point I can say that the sooner the PCE stays forever the sooner I will have gotten the final thing I was looking for, regardless of whatever anyone wants to call it or any correlations with other traditions or anything else.

I am completely unconcerned at this point with whether or not some dead Zen dude or whoever did this in some past eon, whether or not Richard is psychopath, or any of the other petty and strangely irrelevant concerns I have seen voiced in various places. I simply want the PCE to stay, which, given how long I have been able to stay in it at times seems completely doable at this point, just like Stream Entry seemed doable on my 4th retreat, and it was, just like arahatship seemed doable from the periods of walking around in wide-open empty luminosity that I was afforded as a late anagami. I am thankful for the advice and links posted above if they help make the PCE stick around and happen more often.

To the question above about what is the "awareness wave" as I call it: well, this is tricky. I would say that the thing is most noticeable in its lack when there is the PCE mode, but this may not seem fair, so back into vipassana and cycling terminology, as there are ample clues there:

The awareness wave is what makes possible jhanas, ñanas and the like. This is a huge clue. Pay attention to that strange quality by which parts of what would seem to be the world and reality get filtered to strangely out of phase vibrations, curiously altered states that exclude ordinary reality in remarkable ways, or add and seemingly enhance reality with various qualities, such as bliss or rapture or energetic phenomena or visions or any of that. That quality of mind or filtering or tuning or whatever you wish to call it is what I am labeling the attention wave. For those who don't think they have had a PCE or are not sure, a crude vipassana correlation is to compare the 3rd vipassana jhana with the 4th: it should be clear that one is relatively phase-distorted in comparison to the other. Ok, now take the assumption that any mode that is not the PCE Mode is a victim of this same phase-distortion problem, however nice, profound, blissful, formless, or whatever in that same sort of way, just on a basically completely different axis, the axis of attention wave, as I call it, or no attention wave at all. Should you take this on, I highly recommend eyes open practice, as I have found eyes closed practice to be vastly harder, as least for me.

As mentioned above, this is devilishly tricky when not in PCE mode, as anything seems like the wrong direction, just as the mind grasped for a Fruition pre Stream Entry but couldn't figure out what direction to look that was the right one. In just that way, so too go experiments trying to figure out what is the attention wave, as until you are in PCE mode, you are stuck with it as the operating principle that is looking for itself while distorting the very field it is trying to investigate. Bummer, that.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 4:17 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Do you lose the ability to visualize in PCE mode?
Would you say you 'lose all sense of interiority'?

Would trying to visualize a simple thing (say, a green triangle), snap you out of the PCE?

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 4:27 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:

It is interesting the degree to which the correlations seem irrelevant to me in the face of the actual experiment itself, which has become all consuming in its seeming relevance as compared to talk of it and speculation about how these things might line up with anything at all.


Amen to that.

Daniel M. Ingram:

I am completely unconcerned at this point with whether or not some dead Zen dude or whoever did this in some past eon, whether or not Richard is psychopath, or any of the other petty and strangely irrelevant concerns I have seen voiced in various places.


And Amen to this!

May you be successful in your pursuits Daniel, and thank you for your clear, non-bullshit and direct approach.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 8:56 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
So that is PCE Daniel in the writing. Fascinating.

I think it is easy to see that the PCE is a strange attractor: a state that justifies itself, and thus tends to stabilize. Naturally, but the very nature of these strange attractors, they find themselves to be very good.

For instance, the idea of getting rid of the ego process will, for most normal healthy adults, seem like a horrible thing.

The idea of getting rid of the PCE, for (so far) every person having a PCE, will seem like a horrible thing.

That is just part of the reason these states are stable.

What is fascinating to me is that you, Daniel, who have always seemed to me so utterly ruthless in investigating what is going on, seem very changed when you write in this way.

I mean, you have given the most vivid, complete, thorough descriptions of the path to arhatship I have ever read. Your book has dispelled so much dogma in one big elegant sweep that a flock of people, who where once tied up by anti-religious feelings, began to practice meditation (I'm one of those)...

And now you say "I am completely unconcerned at this point with whether or not some dead Zen dude or whoever did this in some past eon, whether or not Richard is psychopath, or any of the other petty and strangely irrelevant concerns I have seen voiced in various places."

From the outside perspective, it looks as though you just want to get your "high"... so to speak. It seems as if you're acting like a junkie, and then of course, "everything else is irrelevant" (Please let cycle daniel read this when he can)

So be reasonable and smart like you usually are:

(1) You WILL ALWAYS be able to get PCE again. You will live for MANY YEARS TO COME. The fear that you feel in cycle mode, of not being able to go back, is completely irrational, and it is just cycle mode expressing itself, it doesn't mean anything in itself. Rationally, you KNOW that you can just practice staying in PCE until it sticks (the dead tibetan dudes call it "protecting practice"). Rationally, you should know that the sensation that the PCE is awesome is just part of the PCE experience, and doesn't mean anything in itself either...

(2) But if you really understand how the mind generates the attention wave, you'll be left with understanding, which I would really love for you to have, because then you could share it with the rest of us using non dogma language. If you just go after the PCE (which of course the PCE, being a strange attractor, naturally impels you to do), you'll just have a PCE and that's it. More knowledge, more fun.

What follows is extremely speculative.

Even before you mentioned that something is happening in the neck, I suspected that it had something to do with the neck chakra (you can read the very same post on KFD you talked about, if you doubt it, it's post number 39-40).

So I suggest that instead of working with sensations in general, you just look at what is happening inside the spine in your neck, and investigate that.

Now, eventually, something there will "break loose" irreversibly. All I am asking you to do is that before you go on and break it loose, pay attention, with the point of trying to remember, how the attention wave is created in the first place, and whether you can create it yourself volitionally during this transitional phase into a stable PCE.

Specifically, and I know this will be a tough thing to ask, I am asking that you, during a PCE, go inside your neck and catch the movement that creates the attention wave, LET IT HAPPEN, and "remember how it goes." Then try and do it again "on purpose," and write up any nice descriptions of what happens.

I am interested in answering the following question: Is the attention wave generated IN THE NECK ITSELF, or is it generated by a FEEDBACK LOOP from a point higher up in the brain? I.e., is it like it's something vibrating there which is unpleasant, or is this vibration coming through a "wire" from somewhere higher up in your brain? And if it is the second case, exactly through where does this wire go?

I suspect that this question might not make sense to you, because it is mainly tied into how my own meditation is unfolding, but I hope it does. Basically, I'm asking you to think of the mind as a circuit, and explain what is happening with the circuit when it generates this attention wave. I also think that this issue will seem irrelevant to you while in PCE, but you can always think something along the lines of "It would be really fun if I completely understood how the evil attention wave works, even if it might take me longer to stabilize this amazing PCE."

(This is, by the way, the one thing missing in your book. You describe everything in awesome detail, and then you describe your attainment of arhatship:

" I remember attaining to a Fruition, and a few seconds later I noticed something about the entrance to it and the re-forming of the sense of a perceiver on the back side of it, and then suddenly the knot of perception flipped open, everything was the same and yet the perspective on it was completely different, and my vipassana problem, once I had stabilized in that understanding, was solved."

"something about the entrance to it and the re-forming of the sense of a perceiver on the back side of it" is missing all that detail.)

Bruno

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 9:34 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:
<snip>
More tidbits:

Ways to get into a PCE:<snip>
b) Ground awareness in the physical realm solidly, openly, clearly to the exclusion of anything else as object. This also sometimes works. The phrase "flesh and blood body" so often used in AF dogma is exactly what I mean.<snip>


Do you think this is the same as "opening the sense doors"? I have heard that term used for experiences I once described as suddenly being dropped into my body as if from a great height and experiencing my surroundings very vividly (a state I can call up at will). Is this a PCE precursor or an actual PCE?

--Ruth

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 9:52 AM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:
Basically richard describes AF as this: (1) remove "self", (2) remove "Self" (3) done. Now you're telling me that after 2000+ years of doing number (1), and we're talking many thousands of practitioners, quite a few of which have dedicated their entire life to secluded practice, no-one has ever come up with doing number (2)... oh, please!... My guess is one will find the description of such a state properly integrated with the previous teachings, framed in the same language (likely a religious language), etc...


This a secondary concern to Daniel's account, but I can't help but think that Bruno is right and this must be true, simply as a matter of common sense.

Daniel Ingram:
There was a post by C Marti over at KFD about why I might be into this seemingly strange pursuit,


I think it is easy for some people to forget that all this Buddhist stuff that we all spend our time on is supposed to end our suffering. Whether we are giving up our humanity or not, whether we are embracing and accepting our feelings as they are or not, whatever it is that we're doing, from the perspective of Buddhism we should be asking "Does this lead to less suffering?" and using the answer to that, and pretty much ONLY that, as our guide. Anything else is, from the perspective of Buddhism, just so much romantic mush.

Daniel, I want to express my gratitude for your very forthright account of your own expedition into this new territory. You and your work are probably the best things that have happened for the contemporary no-bullshit pursuit of insight and all things related thereto.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 1:26 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:

What is fascinating to me is that you, Daniel, who have always seemed to me so utterly ruthless in investigating what is going on, seem very changed when you write in this way.

I mean, you have given the most vivid, complete, thorough descriptions of the path to arhatship I have ever read. Your book has dispelled so much dogma in one big elegant sweep that a flock of people, who where once tied up by anti-religious feelings, began to practice meditation (I'm one of those)...

And now you say "I am completely unconcerned at this point with whether or not some dead Zen dude or whoever did this in some past eon, whether or not Richard is psychopath, or any of the other petty and strangely irrelevant concerns I have seen voiced in various places."

From the outside perspective, it looks as though you just want to get your "high"... so to speak. It seems as if you're acting like a junkie, and then of course, "everything else is irrelevant" (Please let cycle daniel read this when he can)


yet, from another outside perspective, it looks as though he is less interested in engaging in armchair speculation about other people's accomplishments than in pursuing what he has seen, with his own eye, to gleam with worth.

Bruno Loff:

So be reasonable and smart like you usually are:

(...)

(2) But if you really understand how the mind generates the attention wave, you'll be left with understanding, which I would really love for you to have, because then you could share it with the rest of us using non dogma language. If you just go after the PCE (which of course the PCE, being a strange attractor, naturally impels you to do), you'll just have a PCE and that's it. More knowledge, more fun.

(...)

Now, eventually, something there will "break loose" irreversibly. All I am asking you to do is that before you go on and break it loose, pay attention, with the point of trying to remember, how the attention wave is created in the first place, and whether you can create it yourself volitionally during this transitional phase into a stable PCE.

Specifically, and I know this will be a tough thing to ask, I am asking that you, during a PCE, go inside your neck and catch the movement that creates the attention wave, LET IT HAPPEN, and "remember how it goes." Then try and do it again "on purpose," and write up any nice descriptions of what happens.


this is funny, because it (and the rest of bruno's post which followed) is a case of the blind trying to lead the sighted.

notes from my own experience obsessively learning everything i could find out about the attention wave:

i spent months trying to catch the attention wave form out of a pce and i only ever kept getting closer and closer... i never got all the way, and here's why: the closer i looked clearly, wherever i looked, the less it was there. what i eventually learnt: the subtle urge to catch the attention wave as it forms is a way of avoiding seeing what's actually here (either by feeling it as a compulsion to protect oneself from devolving into distortion, or by masquerading it as the oh-so-innocent intention to merely be thorough for the sake of knowledge). it is an illusion, the attention wave is entirely an illusion, and all this madness and mayhem in the world and in people's hearts comes out of what is entirely an illusion.. it would be the funniest thing in the world if it weren't for the reasons people find to keep playing along with it being even funnier.

more about the attention wave:

the attention wave and affect are the same thing.

the attention wave dulls and distorts actual sensitivity (and the subtle way in which it does this confuses people who experience it in its barest form into thinking that it is the faculties of sensitivity themselves, which it is most certainly not; for an example of this, see ian's thread about feeling-tones, to which i will reply later).

the urge to obsess about the attention wave is part of the wave itself. hence, doing so may be unavoidable to some extent; if so, it will fade as one realises that the entire thing (the wave) is increasingly irrelevant to how one is actually experiencing this moment of being alive.

more later.

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 1:45 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel,

Thanks for sharing your experiments.

I have a simple question. How does the PCE relate to the Three Characteristics?

Your description of the PCE makes it seem profoundly satisfying, and potentially permanent.

Is that the case? If so, how to interpret that?

Thanks

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 4:30 PM as a reply to K B.
Thanks to those above for the continued discussion.

To Bruno, I have to agree with Tarin here. The PCE is superior to the mode with an obvious attention wave. I have spent so much time going back and forth between the two, and the vast majority of my life living with the attention wave that I believe I know it about as well as can be known, having refined its use to a remarkable degree with my ñanic and jhanic skills and explorations. While in many ways those exercises improved its behavior and brought great clarity to the thing, the thing itself is simply a problem and inherently clouds things.

One of the interesting things about arahatship is that is conveys this fantastic clarity about that particular form of unclarity, once one has a proper contrast between it and the PCE, and having gone back and forth probably 100 times in the last 4 months between the two, I think I get the two pretty well at this point, though there may yet be surprises and fine points, and I suspect there are.

What technical details are you interested in? What specifically are you trying to do and how would some find points of the mechanics of the attention wave help you?

Again I write in what seems to be PCE mode, having reattained to it about 1.5 hours after waking by a process of simply settling and inclining into sensuous reality in a rather gentle and low-key way as I made my breakfast and began a few chores, and thus, from this vantage point, studying the attention wave would seem like an alcoholic getting drunk again just to be sure he really, really, really understood just how problematic being drunk was.

To the question about the Three Characteristics and the PCE: that's a good question, and I think it probably deserves more than I am about to give it, but I'll jot down a few thoughts as they come to me:

1) Impermanence: it is true, obviously, on many levels, and looking into it brings insights both relative and ultimate from a vipassana point of view. Further, looking into impermanence of things like the sensations that make up emotions and feelings, as anyone who has done this knows, even the pre-path psychologically-obsessed mainstream Buddhists, can give clarity into their transience and help give the mind the ability to be less caught in them and more able to see them as they are, transient, changing, ephemeral, huge dramas built out of what are mostly relatively benign bodily sensations and fleeting phantoms of the imagination. Thus, when pursuing the paths this quality is golden, when pursuing basic psychological work it is similar, and when pursuing the sort of "chase down the origin of emotions" practices of AF is similarly helpful.

There is more, however. Looking into impermanence at the level that I have often done, dissolving reality into flickering abstract patterns of stuff and form and color is at once path-producing if done well and also distorting. I found that level of practice to be unhelpful for AF-related pursuits, as it is perpetuating the basic problem, as ñanas and the like arise from there being an attention wave, as I call it, and thus, while helpful to have gotten me to arahatship, simply seems to be a problem now, as least pragmatically. It is not that things don't change, as they do, but tuning into that now just seems to cause a regression to Cycle Mode, whereas just letting reality show itself has impermanence as one aspect of many without any special need to make it the be-all and end-all that I used when getting paths.

2) Suffering: looking into the fact of there being an attention wave or affective feeling as a cause of suffering is powerful practice, but this is a slippery slope, as there is a way to look at it that just keeps Cycle Mode going and causes progression along the paths and a way to look at it that inclines to the PCE, as outlined somewhere above in my methods to get into a PCE. Looking into the simple fact of suffering can have various aspects, and is in some ways the same as looking into how the attention wave distorts the perceptual field and in other ways is not. Here we come to the complex topic of what the AF kids call "Pure Intent", which I would label as just inclination to a particular way of perceiving things with resolutions to that effect. Just as one can rise through the jhanas in a particular way with a specific inclination to get Nirodha Samapatti, just so one can look into suffering in various aspects and with various inclinations, and looking to see how the attention wave or emotive feelings are the problem inherently is one of those various ways. However, as we will see below, tuning into the delight of the textures and sounds and sights of the material, sensate world has it merits...

3) No-self: this one is really hard, as again there are various aspects to the thing. For a long time I inclined to see all as a play of luminous, empty, causal, transient form and color and qualities, and having done that well, I found that perspective to be completely true within itself and internally consistent and helpful and I glad I did. It made a gigantic difference in my life and so had merit. I can hardly fault those who incline that way, as it is compelling, revealing, empowering and freeing on many levels. Further, as the track record of accomplished insight practitioners ripping up some serious AF practice is impressive, this seems a good way to go. Then we come to this thing I am doing now, where the inclination is different. Now I find myself inclining to the material, the physical, the sensate, the spacial, the auditory, which would seem very much the same as before, but this time it is the delight in the specifics that captures the interest now, which is a very, very different way of working and is producing different perspectives and effects. Questions of self, no-self and the like are good ones and relevant, but somehow, despite the AF dogma making a big deal about these, I find that it can be made more simple than that, really, and they seem philosophical side tracks that take away from the practice itself. There is PCE mode, and, once identified and cultivated, that is simply the compelling thing. Regardless of how one describes it, it speaks for itself, and thus finding it and figuring out how to re-find it are basically the whole thing. It is hard to argue about being satisfied right now, right here, with just this, clearly, precisely, openly, plainly, delightfully, easily. So much complexity in the world arises from the lack of this way of being, obviously.

It may be residual Buddhist conditioning or materialist, scientific conditioning, but I don't particularly like it when AF uses the term "soul" and it just rings oddly to my ear, and I somehow don't really like the endless debates about self and Self and all that, as it seems to be missing some point. I find Richard's writings pretty painful, having slogged through most of Richard's Journal over the last few months. I don't like a lot of his terminology, find him irritatingly repetitive and low yield, mostly, as he will say the same points endlessly about how great AF is with maybe 1% of the thing or less being dedicated to the methodology and phenomenology of the thing, which is what I find interesting.

Back to the Pragmatic:

Figuring out what is the PCE mode and how to get into it:

My best advice at this point:

1) Fake it until you make it. This is actually really important. Take your best guess about times that things were great, really clear, just fine, and you really appreciated something. Kenneth and I used to call this "grooving" back in the day. Maybe it was a Mind and Body thing, maybe it was the afterglow of the A&P, maybe it was Equanimity, maybe it was the feeling just after a Path, maybe it was looking at a great sunset or just noticing the fantastic color of a blue LED or whatever nice moment of clarity and remember it and try to do that now with anything, a fridge magnet, the play of light through a glass of water, the dots of newsprint on a magazine, where you just groove on the fact of the presentation of things until you start to re-create that feeling of really being here and enjoying it just as it is.
2) Ignore frustration with this pursuit and get back to enjoying now in a precise, clear, sensate way. Open the ears to hear what is around you, avoid rushing anywhere unless you stay in your body when you do it and enjoy the feeling of driving or running or rushing, and the like. When emotions arise, simply stay open and try to ignore them except to maybe give them just the investigative attention needed to see the physical and imagined triggers in a way that allows them to simply fade and be seen as just parts of this fantastic world.
3) Once you have practiced this a while with diligence, you may begin to have PCE's. They may be really short lived and you may wonder if they were some vipassana attainment: ignore those thoughts and vipassana attainments in general, particularly the cycles. If they arise, which they will in anyone who has some solid footing in the vipassana world, realize that they are going to fade with further practice at some point but may get stronger initially as you apply the level of every-moment awake mindfulness that really makes all this possible on either front.
4) Pay attention to how they fade and how to just gently incline back to PCE mode without falling into the trap of re-invigorating the attention wave. This is difficult, or at least I have found it to be so, but after some months I can say I am generally better at than I was before. All this stuff takes practice, so don't get discouraged.
5) Detail reality. This is something I learned along the way for getting into Lucid Dreams and for preparing for Traveling out of body, but it also works really well for AF practice, paradoxically. Really be here at all times, tuning into the spacial aspects, textural aspects, lighting aspects, sonic aspects, and contact with your skin and the world. However, ignore internal reality except as needed, as there is already plenty of that, and this serves to level the playing field, so to speak. Notice the subtle touch of air on your skin, the delight in the richness of colors and shapes, and just give into that. This is so refreshing done well that this sort of thing really helps reinforce the practice as being something nice to incline to, and when it results in PCEs, so much stronger is the pull.

More things:

The arguments for the emotive life seem to make so much sense to Cycling Daniel, except that PCE Daniel now knows that he can function just fine and in fact much better when the emotions and drives either very subtle or seem to be not happening at all. This is definitely one of those things that Cycling Daniel can't understand worth a darn except by memory and theory, and is truly a case of paradigms and perspectives being profoundly influenced by the quality of perception itself. As I have started to get used to being at work in my very high-volume, high-intensity emergency department physician job where I have to be extremely clear and on-target in my interactions with people, my processing of extremely complex information and my ability to be with what is happening, I can now attest that doing this in PCE mode is way better than Cycle Mode, which can be problematic at times, even at the arahat level.

I have worked probably a total of 5-10 shifts worth of work now in PCE mode and so have a pretty solid basis for comparison, and there is simply no argument at this point for Cycle Mode at all in that very high-stakes and demanding situation from my current point of view. It did take a little while to get used to the fact that the cues to do things are different and the thing functions differently (an example being that in Cycle Mode I might remember to order a chest x-ray after putting in a central line because there was this weird nagging ache in my stomach that I would look at and try to figure out and then would emerge the realization that I forgot to do that as compared to just the body remembering and doing that, which is so much more clean and less fatigue-producing and more pleasant all around), but the adjustment has been relatively easy in comparison to all sorts of other things I have had to adjust to, such as functioning in the Dark Night.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 5:20 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Hi Daniel,

Daniel:
As I can't field test the thing completely and in a bomb-proof way, as so far every PCE has faded back, I cannot tell exactly where the one ends and the other begins, and so when, say, nervousness or fear or some other such thing arises at some point, is that by definition Cycle Mode, or are there such things in the PCE? At this point, I will tentatively say this: it seems that the PCE performs largely as described, and is remarkable is its freedom from the affective feelings that AF dogma goes to such lengths to revile, but the limitations above apply, and I can't really be sure I am correct in my interpretations without more experimentation and probably AF itself. That is the best I can do at the moment.


I think I might be able to shed some light on this. There is an experience labeled an "excellence experience"(EE) that is basically very much like a PCE. At it's most "pure" level it is almost indistinguishable from the PCE. If one looks very closely one might be able to detect a subtle level of affective feelings(most likely felicitous ones). For me I sometime can't even notice that but I can imagine things. However as Tarin has told me that he and some other actually free people can still imagine things the capacity for imagination appears to not be a criteria for a PCE or AF anymore. The PCE by definition contains no affectation(even mild nervousness or irritation ect). So, I think you may go into PCE and "come out" a little into a EE if your sensing any affective feelings. Some people confuse the EE for "feeling excellent" but it's actually a "almost PCE". An EE is way better than merely an affective "feeling excellent". I suspect many people in the beginning confuse the PCE and the EE as I did at times. I don't see why your experience would be either PCE or Cycle Dan. Seems like there would be some EE action going on there as well. I did note that you wrote "a PCE or something like one".

Daniel:
Just the thought of making Cycle Mode return makes this PCE-enjoying Daniel cringe


Is this "cringe" you speak of a metaphor or is it affective? That could be a clue to whether you're in a full blown PCE or not.

Daniel:
In terms of how it is done: this is easy: turn to emotions, nervousness, unhappiness, desire, fear, cycles, fantasies, jhanas, ñanas, any of that and the like, and the PCE vanishes instantly like a mirage


I'm a bit confused here. If one is "turning to emotions" one is already out of the PCE(if I understand what you mean here). I could see how thinking about the memory of a jhana and then inclining oneself toward that memory could lead to the PCE vanishing perhaps.

From some reports of actually free people(Peter, Vineeto) spending considerable parts of the day(to the point where it was "normal") in a EE(rather than a PCE) was part of the process of becoming actually free. They called that a out-from-control virtual freedom. I recall Vineeto writing that she never(or rarely?) had a full blown PCE towards the end. I only mention this as I and some others fretted way to much at times over whether such and such a experience was a EE or PCE. Getting into either one consistently can get the job done.....so no worries.

I wonder if you took some time off your job for a actual freedom "retreat" if that might not be how to become actually free sooner rather than later.

Cheers

Aaron

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 5:39 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Hey Daniel,

Can you say something directly about the difference between "affect" and the vedana that sensations have in a PCE, if they have vedana?

My experience with PCE-like stuff is that there is no affect in the sense of mood, but sensations can be pleasant, unpleasant, interesting, whatever else in some unique way that is quite different from the case where vedana and affect co-exist. (Perhaps it is that there is no sense, not even the empty or illusory sense, that there is a phenomenal perceiver standing in relation to them, so whatever vedana arise, there is still no problem.)

I've been trying to understand one kind of experience and see whether it amounts to a PCE, but I find the AF-speak impenetrable, and was hoping you could say something that would be clearer to me.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 8:52 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Hello Bruno,

Bruno:
Basically richard describes AF as this: (1) remove "self", (2) remove "Self" (3) done. Now you're telling me that after 2000+ years of doing number (1), and we're talking many thousands of practitioners, quite a few of which have dedicated their entire life to secluded practice, no-one has ever come up with doing number (2)... oh, please!


Bruno:
I think it is just reasonable common sense (which I have the bias/belief should appeal to an AF supporter) that with 2000+ years of meditation research, the idea of Richard that has finally "got it" can be called borderline egomaniac.




First, I'm not telling you anything. I don't have a belief that Richard was the first or not. I'm trying to simply stick to the facts. Let’s go into this a little further. We simply do not have(to my knowledge) any clear writings that someone else has ever experienced permanently what Richard is describing. Maybe someone has but we don't have those clear records. There are "firsts" in all kind of human endeavors and there are many more to come. There was the first person to run a under 4 min mile, the first to climb so and so mountain, ect. Yeah, sure there may have been someone before them that did it......but the fact of the matter is they are the first person to do it as far as anyone knows. Buddha himself considered himself the first person to have been enlightened to that degree according to the Pali Canon.....and perhaps he was......I don't know.

One could present many arguments either way, but the fact is simply we don't have a report like Richard's. I'll humor you with some brief *possible* reasons(speculations) why *perhaps* no one has done it before Richard. As you write above many have "dedicated their entire life to secluded practice" which is pointing to secluded meditation. Secluded meditation(at least of the sit down with your eyes closed kind) does not appear to be contusive to becoming actually free(by the reports of the 9 or so people who have done it). To experience what Richard experiences nonstop someone would had to have ended up rejecting central aspects of their tradition. Like compassion, loving-kindness, joy, closed eye sitting meditation, belief in a nonphysical aspect(Being, Self, Soul or what Richard also calls the instinctual identity) for example. While possible, I'm none too sure how likely that would have been until *modern* times. There is such a thing as new ideas and new discovery. I find it a bit weird how vehemently many people reject the possibility that someone could pioneer a evolutionary breakthrough in consciousness. Which would be one way of looking at what Richard has done if he was the first to have done so.

bruno:
Is it surprising that the same person who came to this conclusion now has his own spiritual movement?


Is it surprising that someone who experienced enlightenment(which still involved some degree of suffering via affective feelings) and then found a condition that removed all suffering would freely offer his discovery for anyone who is interested in order so they could stop all suffering themselves?

bruno:
Is it surprising that people gather around a guru who claims to finally "get it"?


Is it surprising that people who are suffering(whether fully enlightened/Arahants like Trent, Tarin and Daniel or not) would sincerely, honestly and thoroughly investigate experientially the claims of someone who is saying freely "hey, I've done it....you can too"?

bruno:
But I'm sure that "AF is not just like any other spiritual movement"... Like you said, Daniel's ability to examine his views/beliefs in a honest and sincere way is a pretty rare thing


Indeed it is. emoticon I find it a very rewording experience to do so. emoticon

bruno:
So I suggest both of you encourage him to really investigate both sides of the matter, since you are certainly unwilling to do so, instead of urging him on with "pure intent" and patting each other in the back


I don't see Daniel as someone who needs my encouragement. If I have anything I think might be of value to share with him I will do so.

I'm not sure why you would pontificate that Craig and I are unwilling to do so. Do you know our entire life story of questioning these things? Briefly, I practiced meditation and/or contemplative practices for over 11 years, then combined what has come to be known as the "actualism method" with vippasana, ayp yoga, and nondualism for another 4 years and the last 18 months have been practicing the actualism method only. I've been investigating a whole lot for a long time. At some point though it's about getting this thing done(the ending of all suffering for this body, that body and everybody). Craig's been comparing nondualism and actualism for over a decade at least. I've known Craig online for a number of years and we've explored many similar things, though we have often been "at different places" and "of different minds" during our conversations. I'm not so sure how it is insidious that he stated he thought my post "great" and that I "enjoyed" his but as you've described actualism as a "cult" on another forum, it seems you view us as "cult members" and from that perspective I can see why your so suspicious.

Good luck in your search Bruno,

Aaron

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 8:50 PM as a reply to aaron ..
Ah, the EE grey territory in between is a good terminological addition, as things in that space are not always so clear. Thanks for that tip.

As to cringing, it was metaphorical at the time.

Thanks for the additional information about P and V.

This discussion is proving quite helpful.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 9:03 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Thanks Daniel for bringing this into the realm of interpreted experience. I found the AF site pretty hard to digest.

Your comments on the 3 characteristics are very practice oriented, from the perspective of attaining PCE.

As someone who is still using the raft of formalisms, its pretty hard to see how to reconcile the notion of the 3 characteristics of ultimate reality with the experience of the PCE, unless one or the other is a delusion.

And I think that is the basis of the aversion among many here to AF, and perhaps there is a benefit to spelling this out.

There is a great irony in this. The Buddha taught suffering and the end of suffering. AF claims to end suffering more thoroughly, and now people attack AF with the same criticisms that others use to attack buddhism: this removal of the self and suffering is too scary and dehumanizing. "What ever will we do without our precious characteristic X??"

On the other hand, the writings of AF proponents are filled with aversion and desire. Aversion of the nonphysical (the word "parasite" in reference to the mind/emotional complex for example), and desire for the high of the PCE state. The process of mind training seems more akin to self-hypnosis in comparison to the buddhist path of seeing things how they actually are. The AF site describes it as not much different than a lobotomy - permanently switching off physical brain circuitry .

Basically, what I and probably others want to know, are these paths compatible, or is AF like the dark side of the force? Dabbling with it seems dangerous due to its addictive nature.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 10:43 PM as a reply to K B.
K B:
There is a great irony in this. The Buddha taught suffering and the end of suffering. AF claims to end suffering more thoroughly, and now people attack AF with the same criticisms that others use to attack buddhism: this removal of the self and suffering is too scary and dehumanizing. "What ever will we do without our precious characteristic X??"


Yes it is ironic. Very well put.

K B:
On the other hand, the writings of AF proponents are filled with aversion and desire. Aversion of the nonphysical (the word "parasite" in reference to the mind/emotional complex for example), and desire for the high of the PCE state. The process of mind training seems more akin to self-hypnosis in comparison to the buddhist path of seeing things how they actually are. The AF site describes it as not much different than a lobotomy - permanently switching off physical brain circuitry.


I think it is OK to have a preference, and stating the facts of one's preference in strong terms seems to cause an affective response in someone with differing preferences. The writings of AF proponents state the facts as they see them. If it's someone like me, who is not yet actually free, I am still prone to the four instinctual passions, so you may well see evidence of aversion and desire in my writing. However if you see it in Richard's writing, or anyone else actually free, the aversion or desire may be arising in the reader rather than the writer. BTW, coming to see how that happens is an important developmental step.

In AF preferences are unavoidable and healthy but being driven by a passionate craving is undesirable because we are no longer free. We become like a robot until the craving is over. Aversion and desire are no more embraced by actualists than by buddhists.

K B:
Basically, what I and probably others want to know, are these paths compatible, or is AF like the dark side of the force? Dabbling with it seems dangerous due to its addictive nature.


Is AF compatible with buddhism? I think that's a question everyone needs to answer for themselves. I find it compatible in goal if not in the feeling-tone (for obvious reasons emoticon

Is it the dark side? I struggled with this for years. The notion of giving up love, giving up my soul terrified me. However I am convinced that it is not the dark side. Actually the part of us that worries it's the dark side is in fact the dark side itself!

A few months ago I realised that the qualities I projected onto the concept of God - peace, perfection, benevolence, intimacy, the list goes on...those are the qualities of actual freedom. This recognition struck me quite strongly at the time. I can become what I was trying to find.

Perhaps the tiny glimpses of AF in the briefest of PCEs throughout my life are what caused me to conceive of a God who embodied them?

Craig

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/25/10 10:57 PM as a reply to aaron ..
Hi Aaron

aaron .:
What finaly led you to drop your interest in enlightenment and shoot directly for actual freedom? Was it the fact that there was finally confirmation that it could be repeatable?


I had previously wanted to try to make sure I'd made it all the way to arahatship, but nothing changed on an insight front since early 2009 and nothing else feels like it needs to be done, so if I'm not there yet I got close enough for me.

I had the chance to meet Tarin when he was in Australia, and seeing AF in person gave me all the evidence I needed to put aside my doubts about AF once and for all. Meeting Vineeto for a few minutes when saying goodbye to Tarin was also very eye opening and provided additional evidence just in case I needed it.

Craig

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/26/10 3:00 AM as a reply to My Fragile Ego.
Here a some thoughts from my practice of PCE from notes in my book (this is what I have attempted to understand from investigating and I may be way off but I hope it helps with the discussion)

"Is it the dark side? I struggled with this for years. The notion of giving up love, giving up my soul terrified me."

This is the paradox as they rise from a belief in somthing that doesnt exist,
As in a PCE there is no self between perception, no attachment/aversion causing movement to or from an object energizing the "Feeling of Being" (I'amness which is colored by emotion, quality of Felt Sense). With no "feeling of Being" the is no "self" awareness, the reflexive mechanism of the mind,

There is an immediacy and newness in what is perceived as it is not distorted by emotions.

With no self awareness there is no body image produced and the experience is a bodiless experience as in the immediacy of perception of the senses there is no concept of body arising but there are touch, tones and textures sensations from the physical body (and if you leave the moment to reflect on the body there will be self awareness and no PCE)

There is also no energy felt as this would fuel the Feeling of Being, there would be self awareness and self would distort (get in the way) of the conscious experience. Normally the universe is experienced through the filter of the self (affective emotions are like a lens that color the whole universe as it arises and passes from moment to moment)

During PCE, I feel lost in wonder of the senses instead of absorbed with no immediate memory of what was before (and no attempt recall the memory). After coming out of the PCE upon reflection there must be a continuance in awareness as there is a subtle knowing (and memory) of the past.

I find it easiest for PCE when out walking in nature, I walk in the mangroves by the river ever day and it is an immediate sensate experience. Perceiving the river, the trees, the visual field qualities stabilize it but I have not been able to stabilize this for more then about 1 hour at most. But it is usually interrupted by some unconscious trigger which start thoughts rising about the past or future coupled with an emotional response.

Also a PCE cannot be investigated as it brings it abruptly to an end as thoughts, triggers, bodily response and emotions rise (self awareness)

There can be no suffering as there is no self, no attachment or aversion, there is no discursive thought about yesterday or tomorrow (caused by a conscious or unconscious trigger - movement towards or away from an object, a self centered bodily response, emotion and more thoughts regarding an association with that emotion)

This raises questions about the 4 noble truths. If anger, desire, or for example thoughts about someone offending you arise and pass in your mind but you have seen the emptiness and are equanimious and watch these come and go without sticking. There is still the causes of suffering even though they do not affect "you" at the moment. Everything changes and sooner or later the attachment or aversion is going to be strong enough that they start to stick. An example would be a relationship breakup.


If thoughts arise and you are asking HAMIETMTBA you are not in PCE.

I found this as a tool to investigate the triggers of emotions and starting out with a pleasant thought as a tool of investigation (better then starting with a negative).
Remember Pleasant thoughts cause pleasant feelings and negative thoughts cause negative feelings.
The state of mind influences the mental contents which has the following effect
1. A new thought arises;
2. The body physically reacts to the new thought;
3. The mind perceives (labels) the bodily sensation patterns as an emotion; and
4. New emotional (conditioned) thoughts are generated.

you can stop the process at 2 before the loop starts

I don't see this practice HAIETMTBA as being used to condition a state of pleasantness permanently as this is just the basic practice to get you started to recognize the process. In PCE there are no conditioning

When in a PCE it might be described as perfect ease as there is no self, no attachment/no aversion, no suffering, no emotion distorting perception. Each moment is uniquely perfect, no discrimination, you could describe it as perfect ease but describing it is not PCE


Initially when I heard of PCE I thought it was similar to Rigpa or surrendering so there was just awareness, I describe the experience as stillness, space, knowing, silence, i.e awareness, this is definitely not the same process, it was me trying to interpret someone elses experience in the context of what I knew. With Awareness there is a ease, clarity and a freedom but it doesn't have the intimacy, immediacy or intensity of the PCE. With PCE each moment is a new discovery,

An emotion always has a body and thought content. Emotional patterns are stored in your body from enforced by learned responses and can be conditioned from, genetic predisposition, trauma, repeated experiences, beliefs, prejudices and the culture you where born into.

There can be unconscious triggers which cause emotions so an investigation of the body responses and thoughts that arise (emotion) using a range of words to trigger can be revealing.

If there are only 3 types of feelings it makes sense that the range of emotions which arise stem from these 3 feeling tones.

What I find interesting is that there is never discursive thought (self talk) happening unless there is attachment/aversion and a body response with emotions. Please someone speak up and correct me if there can be thoughts arising in the mind without being triggered by an aversion or attachment for an object (an unconscious, imaginary one, sing a song, reading, counting etc).


As soon as I am aware of thought I check for the trigger of the attachment/aversion, I find creating a space at the heart chakra. I find I will notice the trigger for these thoughts. Of all the chakras the heart appears to be the easiest to detect these causes (attachment/aversions) and it is an interesting investigation. The question is what came first the thought or the body response (conditions).


Another tool I have used is from philospher/psychotherapist E. Gendlin which first appeared in his book "Focusing" about 25 yrs ago is called focusing.
The process is described in 6 movements
1. Clearing a space
2. The Felt Sense
3. Finding a handle
4. Resonating
5. Asking; and
6. Receiving

Step 1 Ask how are you and clear a space between you and feeling fine (Witness - is separation and disidentifying)
Step 2 this is a very similar process to the first technique in that you focus on a problem and observe the sense in your body when you recall the whole of the problem.
Step 3 involves what is the quality (perception) of the felt sense. What one word, phrase or image comes out of the felt sense.
Step 4 involves going back and forth with the word (or image) and the felt sense working with the word (or image) until you get a perfect match (it feels just right fro the feeling)
Step 5 you ask questions that trigger a response and wait for a feeling to stir and give you an answer.
Step 6 you welcome what comes

Repeat the process if required until the pattern is replaced by space


thanks
Jeff

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/26/10 4:08 AM as a reply to Jeff Grove.
Jeff Grove:
Here a some thoughts from my practice of PCE from notes in my book (this is what I have attempted to understand from investigating and I may be way off but I hope it helps with the discussion) 


you're off some places, on some places, and i'll go through and point out various things i see which may be useful.

Jeff Grove:

"Is it the dark side? I struggled with this for years. The notion of giving up love, giving up my soul terrified me."

This is the paradox as they rise from a belief in somthing that doesnt exist,
As in a PCE there is no self between perception, no attachment/aversion causing movement to or from an object energizing the "Feeling of Being" (I'amness which is colored by emotion, quality of Felt Sense). With no "feeling of Being" the is no "self" awareness, the reflexive mechanism of the mind,


i'amness isn't merely coloured by emotion, it is constituted entirely of passion.

there is the movement to, there is the movement from, and there is also a self-contained, self-reinforcing swirl which is still part of this same phenomenon of being.. a swirl with an empty core.

the swirl is the passions (and through their filtration, the world 'i' perceive).. the core is one's 'True Self'.

Jeff Grove:

There is an immediacy and newness in what is perceived as it is not distorted by emotions. 

With no self awareness there is no body image produced and the experience is a bodiless experience as in the immediacy of perception of the senses there is no concept of body arising but there are  touch, tones and textures sensations from the physical body (and if you leave the moment to reflect on the body there will be self awareness and no PCE)


a funny way of putting it, but i know what you're getting at. careful not to go too far into avoiding thought by the way.. there is such a thing as the immediacy of thought.

Jeff Grove:

There is also no energy felt as this would fuel the Feeling of Being, there would be self awareness and self would distort (get in the way) of the conscious experience.  Normally the universe is experienced through the filter of the self 


there is certainly no energy felt in the experience of the actual world (the experience revealed in a pce).

and yet, i am aware that i am sitting here, this human being, flesh and blood and skin and bone, replete with sensate and cognitive faculties, sensitively and appraisingly appreciating the actual world. furthermore, the entirely of this experience - including the experience of what i am, cognitive faculties included - is experienced as this world itself (the actual world does experience itself).

this is apperception.. also revealed in a pce.

Jeff Grove:

During PCE, I feel lost in wonder of the senses instead of absorbed with no immediate memory of what was before (and no attempt recall the memory). After coming out of the PCE upon reflection there must be a continuance in awareness as there is a subtle knowing (and memory) of the past.

I find it easiest for PCE when out walking in nature, I walk in the mangroves by the river ever day and it is an immediate sensate experience. Perceiving the river, the trees, the visual field qualities stabilize it but I have not been able to stabilize this for more then about 1 hour at most.  But it is usually interrupted by some unconscious trigger which start thoughts rising about the past or future coupled with an emotional response.
 

do you notice that the unconscious trigger which starts thoughts rising is, itself, an affective experience?

if so, do you find it helpful either to locate it in a bodily way (where in the body did you feel something concomitant with the basic passional experience which interrupted the pce?) or to notice how it ripples your attention like a subtle and quick distortion (such that the clarity, immediacy, and stressless-ness of the pce are affected).. or both?

Jeff Grove:

Also a PCE cannot be investigated as it brings it abruptly to an end as thoughts, triggers, bodily response and emotions rise (self awareness)


a pce can certainly be investigated, and i encourage you to do this once you get a better sense of how to hang out in one.

i found unexamined fears hidden in this area, and beliefs about myself and what is and isn't possible to experience.. it is probably essential to go into. look lightly and delicately at why investigating a pce triggers passional response.

Jeff Grove:

There can be no suffering as there is no self, no attachment or aversion, there is no discursive thought about yesterday or tomorrow (caused by a conscious or unconscious trigger - movement towards or away from an object, a self centered bodily response, emotion and more thoughts regarding an association with that emotion)

This raises questions about the 4 noble truths. If anger, desire, or for example thoughts about someone offending you arise and pass in your mind but you have seen the emptiness and are equanimious and watch these come and go without sticking. There is still the causes of suffering even though they do not affect "you" at the moment. Everything changes and sooner or later the attachment or aversion is going to be strong enough that they start to stick. An example would be a relationship breakup.


yes. non-sticky afflictions are still afflictions.. they are not afflictive because of their level of stickiness, they are afflictive because of what they are from their very arising.

Jeff Grove:

If thoughts arise and you are asking HAMIETMTBA you are not in PCE. 


in a pce, there is no need to ask 'how am i experiencing this moment of being alive?', but it is certainly possible.. as it is also certainly possible for thoughts to arise (thoughts require no thinker).

in my ongoing experience of the actual world, for example, i can ask 'how am i experiencing this moment of being alive?' ... and the answer? there isn't one at all (not even a silence).

how wonderful this world as it actually is is!
 
Jeff Grove:

I found this as a tool to investigate the triggers of emotions and starting out with a pleasant thought as a tool of investigation (better then starting with a negative).
Remember Pleasant thoughts cause pleasant feelings and negative thoughts cause negative feelings.


you may find deeper success if you turn that the other way around, so that it reads:

'remember pleasant feelings cause pleasant thoughts and negative feelings cause negative thoughts.'

because the depth of feelings aren't merely the emotional level.. the depth of feelings run into the fabric of affect itself. what emotions are are thought-compounded passions (passions which begin prior to thought).

Jeff Grove:

The state of mind influences the mental contents which has the following effect
1. A new thought arises;
2. The body physically reacts to the new thought;
3. The mind perceives (labels) the bodily sensation patterns as an emotion; and
4. New emotional (conditioned) thoughts are generated.
you can stop the process at 2 before the loop starts


further, you can stop the process even before the loop which causes 2 to start starts.. by seeing how 1 ('a new thought arises') is caused by 0 ('a passional stirring occurs').

Jeff Grove:

I don't see this practice HAIETMTBA as being used to condition a state of pleasantness permanently as this is just the basic practice to get you started to recognize the process. In PCE there are no conditioning


this is correct. the state of pleasantness (the state of having - or even better, being - felicitous feelings) is merely an affective imitation of the pce.. but it is an imitation which is essential for 'me' to generate if i am to be the pure intent which leads directly to the pce.

when i feel well, i am in a position to see clearly, and to sensitively know, for myself, what i really want. hence, the desire to live well (of which feeling well is a part) occurs in the course of my recognition of my own sensible wishes (which is what being sincere is, as i really do wish to live well). sincerely living well leads me to really get into the enjoyment of being here (and being alive - and even being me).. and from here, pure intent really starts to make sense (all the way back to the beginning of maximising felicitous feelings), as habitually enjoying myself evokes a naivete about - a wide-eyed wonder at - this very world as it happens... and here is where i can really, safely and securely, let go into it (give myself permission to wander off completely). from here, the pce is bound to occur.

it is worth quoting something richard wrote on this topic (with my own emphasis added):

Richard:

'One can induce a peak experience – with practice on a daily basis – by pure contemplation based securely on the previous PCE’s. One of the main characteristics of the peak experience is purity. An unimaginable purity permeates the whole of existence, showering its blessing over all and sundry. From the condition of being ‘human’, one can plug into that purity with a pure intent. Pure intent is the connection between the intimate aspect of oneself, that one usually keeps hidden away for fear of seeming foolish, and the purity of the peak experience. In ‘normal’ life one avoids acting in a way that invites scorn from the insensitive philistines, who would rather perpetuate misery than admit they were wrong in their judgement on life, but the time eventually comes when one can stay quiescent no longer. The urge wells up to penetrate into the ‘Mystery of Life’, to find that ultimate fulfilment, and to achieve peace-on-earth. Pure intent is the highway to this utter freedom, to one’s destiny ... and it is a wide and wondrous path.' 


*

Jeff Grove:

When in a PCE it might be described as perfect ease as there is no self, no attachment/no aversion, no suffering, no emotion distorting perception. Each moment is uniquely perfect, no discrimination, you could describe it as perfect ease but describing it is not PCE


do you mean that you cannot describe the experience from within it? if so, why do you think this?

methinks this is due to some kind of crossover buddhist/zen weirdness about how the description of an experience isn't the experience.. sure, the word 'pomegranate' isn't a pomegranate, and you can't eat the word, but you can certainly talk about a pomegranate while eating it (and if you're in an unfamiliar town, you can use the word 'pomegranate' to find one).

Jeff Grove:

An emotion always has a body and thought content. Emotional patterns are stored in your body from enforced by learned responses and can be conditioned from, genetic predisposition, trauma, repeated experiences, beliefs, prejudices and the culture you where born into.  


while this is true of emotions, what is also true of passions (the 'stuff' emotions are formed from) is that everyone was born with them, regardless of what responses they have learnt, what their genetic predispositions are, the trauma they have or have not faced, the experiences which they have or have not repeatedly encountered, or the beliefs and prejudices of the culture they were or were not born into.

in short: your emotional arrangement/make-up is your own.. but its passional (elemental) source is everybody's.

Jeff Grove:

There can be unconscious triggers which cause emotions so an investigation of the body responses and thoughts that arise (emotion) using a range of words to trigger can be revealing.
If there are only 3 types of feelings it makes sense that the range of emotions which arise stem from these 3 feeling tones. 


i presume that you are here referring to the distinction between good feelings, bad feelings, and felicitous feelings. if this is so, then you are on the right track, so long as what this distinction leads you to do is to maximise one (the felicitous ones) and not just minimise two (the good ones and bad ones), as doing only the latter will lead to the experience many people characterise (incorrectly) and disparage (correctly[1]) as 'emotionless' - that is, an experience of numb and/or callous feelings.

Jeff Grove:

What I find interesting is that there is never discursive thought (self talk) happening unless there is attachment/aversion and a body response with emotions. Please someone speak up and correct me if there can be thoughts arising in the mind without being triggered by an aversion or attachment for an object (an unconscious, imaginary one, sing a song, reading, counting etc).


i remember having reached the same conclusion (that there is never discursive thought happening unless there is attachment/aversion or emotion) earlier on in my exploration, but it was later revealed to be unfounded. prior to becoming actually free, there were occasions, even within a pce, in which reflection to myself (an intellectual operation) was appropriate, even useful for understanding the pce in certain ways, and such reflection did happen in the form of language (and words). nowadays, there are still occasions, even in an actual freedom, in which the same kind of reflection is warranted; sometimes there are decisions to be made which benefit from careful consideration. as a concrete example, i recently found the decision to rent either one of two living accomodations, which differed in price, location, and amenities offered, to be worth thinking about (particularly in the context of what i expected to do in my daily activities).. which i did clearly and cleanly, and quickly, and effortlessly, and which did not disturb the peace of being here, nor distort its purity, one bit.

thought does operate here (in the actual world), and operates well.

Jeff Grove:

As soon as I am aware of thought I check for the trigger of the attachment/aversion, I find creating a space at the heart chakra. I find I will notice the trigger for these thoughts. Of all the chakras the heart appears to be the easiest to detect these causes (attachment/aversions) and it is an interesting investigation. The question is what came first the thought or the body response (conditions). 


my advice here is look for what is masquerading as 'thought'.. attend closer to the trigger itself (feel it when it occurs).

you mention the heart centre area.. i say get a sense of what's going on there (feel it out) but, rather than set up guard there, trace the trigger back even further downward, into your solar plexus centre... and if you can still find the trace and trail here, then follow it all the way to just past your navel, where your hara/tan tien/core centre.

here it may be worth quoting richard again:

Richard:

(...) I would like to emphasise a couple of important aspects to it regarding sincerity/ naiveté.
Given that it is, plainly and simply, always ‘my’ choice as to how ‘I’ experience this moment then the optimum manner in which to do so is, of course, sincerely/ naïvely.
Thus the part-sentence in that previous post of mine (quote) ‘and to be sincere is to be the key which unlocks naiveté’ (endquote) is worth expanding upon.
The operative words in that part-sentence are (quote) ‘... to be the key ...’ (endquote) and with particular emphasis on the word ‘be’ (rather than ‘have’ for instance).
In other words, to be sincerity (not only have sincerity) is to be the key (not merely have the key) to be naiveté (not just have naiveté).
(Bear in mind that, at root, ‘I’ am ‘my’ feelings and ‘my’ feelings are ‘me’ and it will all become clear).
As there is something I have oft-times encouraged a fellow human being to try, in face-to-face interactions, which usually has the desired effect it is well worth detailing here:
Reach down inside of yourself intuitively (aka feeling it out) and go past the rather superficial emotions/ feelings (generally in the chest area) into the deeper, more profound passions/ feelings (generally in the solar plexus area) until you come to a place (generally about four-finger widths below the navel) where you intuitively feel you elementarily have existence as a feeling being (as in ‘me’ at the core of ‘my’ being ... which is ‘being’ itself).
Now, having located ‘being’ itself, gently and tenderly sense out the area immediately below that (just above/just before and almost touching on the sex centre).
Here you will find yourself both likeable and liking (for here lies sincerity/ naiveté).
Here is where you can, finally, like yourself (very important) no matter what.
Here is the nearest a ‘self’ can get to innocence whilst remaining a ‘self’.
Here lies tenderness/ sweetness and togetherness/ closeness.
Here is where it is possible to be the key.


i found the above advice useful in a breakthrough kind of way (and have written about it some - if the above exercise resonates with you, let me know and i will post it).

Jeff Grove:

Another tool I have used is from philospher/psychotherapist E. Gendlin which first appeared in his book "Focusing" about 25 yrs ago is called focusing.

The process is described in 6 movements
1. Clearing a space
2. The Felt Sense
3. Finding a handle
4. Resonating
5. Asking; and
6. Receiving
Step 1 Ask how are you and clear a space between you and feeling fine (Witness - is separation and disidentifying)
Step 2 this is a very similar process to the first technique in that you focus on a problem and observe the sense in your body when you recall the whole of the problem.
Step 3 involves what is the quality (perception) of the felt sense. What one word, phrase or image comes out of the felt sense.
Step 4 involves going back and forth with the word (or image) and the felt sense working with the word (or image) until you get a perfect match (it feels just right fro the feeling)
Step 5 you ask questions that trigger a response and wait for a feeling to stir and give you an answer.
Step 6 you welcome what comes
Repeat the process if required until the pattern is replaced by space


how have you found this process useful?

tarin

[1] disparage: to reduce in esteem or rank.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/26/10 6:59 AM as a reply to tarin greco.
tarin greco you're off some places, on some places, and i'll go through and point out various things i see which may be useful.

Jeff Grove Hi Tarin, Thanks for identifying where I am going wrong and pointing me in the right direction. The feedback you have supplied is fantastic and the guidance I needed, much appreciated

tarin greco do you notice that the unconscious trigger which starts thoughts rising is, itself, an affective experience?

Jeff Grove One I have really noticed that triggers the thoughts is that I have some unconscious prejudices towards certain types of people which creates a slight tightening around the stomach as a response, a coiling action like winding spring, fear then the thoughts can go off in all sorts of imaginative directions.

tarin greco if so, do you find it helpful either to locate it in a bodily way (where in the body did you feel something concomitant with the basic passional experience which interrupted the pce?) or to notice how it ripples your attention like a subtle and quick distortion (such that the clarity, immediacy, and stressless-ness of the pce are affected).. or both?

Jeff Grove Thanks for the pointer I need to investigate more

tarin greco a pce can certainly be investigated, and i encourage you to do this once you get a better sense of how to hang out in one.

i found unexamined fears hidden in this area, and beliefs about myself and what is and isn't possible to experience.. it is probably essential to go into. look lightly and delicately at why investigating a pce triggers passional response.

Jeff Grove Again thank you great information


tarin greco while this is true of emotions, what is also true of passions (the 'stuff' emotions are formed from) is that everyone was born with them, regardless of what responses they have learnt, what their genetic predispositions are, the trauma they have or have not faced, the experiences which they have or have not repeatedly encountered, or the beliefs and prejudices of the culture they were or were not born into.

in short: your emotional arrangement/make-up is your own.. but its passional (elemental) source is everybody's.

Jeff Grove Yes I need to dig deeper examine, investigate understand instinctual passions - appreciated


tarin greco my advice here is look for what is masquerading as 'thought'.. attend closer to the trigger itself (feel it when it occurs).

you mention the heart centre area.. i say get a sense of what's going on there (feel it out) but, rather than set up guard there, trace the trigger back even further downward, into your solar plexus centre... and if you can still find the trace and trail here, then follow it all the way to just past your navel, where your hara/tan tien/core centre.

Jeff Grove I have been using focusing around the tan tien to investigate, I will dig deeper as suggested



tarin greco i found the above advice useful in a breakthrough kind of way (and have written about it some - if the above exercise resonates with you, let me know and i will post it).
how have you found this process useful?

Jeff Grove it would be great if you could post it, I have been using the Focusing method around the chakras and a type of self inquiry at the chakras and there is certainly an emotional response to the energies associated at these locations.

again thank you for your help

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/26/10 12:53 PM as a reply to K B.
K B:

On the other hand, the writings of AF proponents are filled with aversion and desire. Aversion of the nonphysical (the word "parasite" in reference to the mind/emotional complex for example), and desire for the high of the PCE state. The process of mind training seems more akin to self-hypnosis in comparison to the buddhist path of seeing things how they actually are. The AF site describes it as not much different than a lobotomy - permanently switching off physical brain circuitry .

................................

Basically, what I and probably others want to know, are these paths compatible, or is AF like the dark side of the force? Dabbling with it seems dangerous due to its addictive nature.


Although accidents do happen in normal life as well but I think that AF method increases the likelihood of an accident happening. If you are in a job where you could get hurt, then you should think thrice and don't give in to the desire for the high of the PCE state. I gave up when I almost got into an accident which could have killed me.

I have read Tarin's account of how he also was about to be overrun by a truck while biking and that he wasn't disturbed by it. I think it happened in the first place because of AF increasing the likelihood of an accident happening. This makes me wonder if this is the reason as to why some actually free people are very concerned about their safety which to me seems delusional.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/26/10 1:05 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:
And now you say "I am completely unconcerned at this point with whether or not some dead Zen dude or whoever did this in some past eon, whether or not Richard is psychopath, or any of the other petty and strangely irrelevant concerns I have seen voiced in various places."

From the outside perspective, it looks as though you just want to get your "high"... so to speak. It seems as if you're acting like a junkie, and then of course, "everything else is irrelevant" (Please let cycle daniel read this when he can)



The pull of "high" can make you unconcerned about a lot of things, it is highly narcissistic.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/26/10 3:13 PM as a reply to My Fragile Ego.
Hi Craig,

Thanks for your replies.

Certainly there is a huge list of movements and lifestyles that some people though were the end of the world, and in the end were just people being people, in a new way. Rationally, that seems the most likely situation with AF, and generally open mindedness and tolerance is a good thing.

The idea that fear of the dark side is itself the dark side is a pretty good point. Particularly from the perspective of no-self.

I just want to make one point, and I think it is an important one, with regards to the elimination of emotions and whether AF people are capable of feeling desire and aversion:

Just because you may not feel such emotions consciously doesn't mean that there are not there and influencing your actions.

The evidence all AF people should consider is from neuroscience and psychiatry, particularly dissociation and studies on severing the corpus callosum. The chief findings of this is that the conscious mind will invent all sorts of explanations and rationalizations (ranging to fantastic delusion in extreme cases) for behavior that is clearly influenced by the dissociated part of the mind. It doesn't seem unreasonable that something similar could be happening here.

And this gets into the related point about attitudes towards the physical versus mental/emotional..

AF has adopted a manichean point of view on this. The physical is the god/savior/truth. And there is no way about it, the mental/emotional has to be the evil and degraded element. Calling it a parasite because "thats how things are" is a consequence of making a division in the first place and putting one side on the pedestal.

The dogma of AF is all about the limited emotional model. What is the shadow side of that?

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/26/10 11:57 PM as a reply to K B.
KB - Thanks for your replies.

"Certainly there is a huge list of movements and lifestyles that some people though were the end of the world, and in the end were just people being people, in a new way. Rationally, that seems the most likely situation with AF, and generally open mindedness and tolerance is a good thing."

JG - I dont know about identifying with movements and lifestyles but as a systematic investigation into the depths of a process which has been pointed to can be discovered for yourself and will help clear up any mistaken beliefs one has formed about AF if they are in fact mistaken.

For myself a skipped over the writings on Richard mainly because I had no understanding what he was talking about (although I believed I had a good understanding on the aggregates seen as the self process from my insights in meditation -) which caused me to lose interest in the topic and to fill in the blanks with using my experiential background in the mistaken belief in that the difference was in the terms and description, so I used my new concepts to explain the experience,


With a bit of experiential knowledge in the practice you soon start to discover there is allot of depth to this process (and if you are truly leaving no stone should be left unturned) Further this process has been repeatedly confirmed by independent researchers with no large variation in findings in all stages of development.


KB - Just because you may not feel such emotions consciously doesn't mean that there are not there and influencing your actions.

The evidence all AF people should consider is from neuroscience and psychiatry, particularly dissociation and studies on severing the corpus callosum. The chief findings of this is that the conscious mind will invent all sorts of explanations and rationalizations (ranging to fantastic delusion in extreme cases) for behavior that is clearly influenced by the dissociated part of the mind. It doesn't seem unreasonable that something similar could be happening here.

JG - "buddhist, hindu, christian, shamanic mystical and magic traditions use disidentfying techniques to disembed from experience to help with insight into the self, its interaction with the environment and reality. Modern psychologists use similar disassociation techniques for discovery into problems such as anger management, jealousy and a range of modern afflictions from strong associations and internal causes of mind states for addictions. Its amazing what we take for real that turns out to be fantastic delusion after investigation. The investigations in Physics which is the study of natural phenomena is struggling with the implications of just how far this delusion goes.

KB - And this gets into the related point about attitudes towards the physical versus mental/emotional..

AF has adopted a manichean point of view on this. The physical is the god/savior/truth. And there is no way about it, the mental/emotional has to be the evil and degraded element. Calling it a parasite because "thats how things are" is a consequence of making a division in the first place and putting one side on the pedestal.

The dogma of AF is all about the limited emotional model. What is the shadow side of that?

JG - I don't no about adopting a view as I initially was repeating all the comments you have stated based on what I had heard a few people say and me skimming over a couple of pages on Richards web site. Now practicing and investigating is providing me with more insights that require investigating and Tarin has pointed to a whole range of areas that I need to give attention to.

Personally for me the big question that gives it all purposes is
Why does there have to be suffering
What are the causes that create suffering
Is it possible to live fully fearless with no suffering

Even back in Genesis in the story of adam and eve who lived in the garden of eden where there was no separation from god and no suffering until they ate the fruit of knowledge and become self aware, once there was a self as a medium between what is and how they perceived it there was never that state of perfection again and were kicked out of the garden of Eden. All the great traditions have stories like these pointing to how our identification with the ego instead of of the all is delusion or ignorance. But is seeing through the self enough, is seeing the emptiness enough developing the non stickiness to the myriad of things arising and passing moment to moment. This does not stop the causes of suffering they are still there.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/26/10 7:17 PM as a reply to K B.
K B:
I just want to make one point, and I think it is an important one, with regards to the elimination of emotions and whether AF people are capable of feeling desire and aversion:

Just because you may not feel such emotions consciously doesn't mean that there are not there and influencing your actions.

The evidence all AF people should consider is from neuroscience and psychiatry, particularly dissociation and studies on severing the corpus callosum. The chief findings of this is that the conscious mind will invent all sorts of explanations and rationalizations (ranging to fantastic delusion in extreme cases) for behavior that is clearly influenced by the dissociated part of the mind. It doesn't seem unreasonable that something similar could be happening here.


Hi K B

I agree, this is an important point you raise, there is a very real risk of creating new shadow sides and dissociations if one is not careful while attempting to minimise feelings. Learning to get the method right is the key here. Having resolved aspects of my shadow and having experienced cognitive dissonance in action I am confident that the PCE is free from any such concerns.

Here is a useful clarification Richard made on the topic: (from http://actualfreedom.com.au/richard/selectedcorrespondence/sc-feelings.htm which I found by googling "site:actualfreedom.com.au callous" as I remembered he had written about the risk of becoming cold and callous)

Often people who read about actual freedom gain the impression that I am asking people to stop feeling ... which I am not. My whole point is to cease ‘being’ – psychologically and psychically self-immolate – which means that the entire affective faculty is extirpated. That is, the biological instinctual package handed out by blind nature is deleted like a computer software programme (but with no ‘Recycle Bin’ to retrieve it from) so that the psyche itself is no more. Then – and only then – are there no feelings. It is impossible to be a ‘stripped-down’ self – divested of feelings – for ‘I’ am ‘my’ feelings and ‘my’ feelings are ‘me’. Anyone who attempts this absurdity would wind up being somewhat like what is known in psychiatric terminology as a ‘sociopathic personality’ (popularly know as ‘psychopath’). Such a person still has feelings – ‘cold’, ‘callous’, ‘indifferent’ – and has repressed the others (‘repressed’ not ‘suppressed’). In a PCE the feelings play no part at all – the self is in abeyance – but can come rushing in, if one is not alert, resulting in the PCE devolving into an ASC ... complete with a super-self. Indeed, this demonstrates that it is impossible for there to be no feelings whilst there is a self – in this case a Self – thus it is the ‘being’ that has to go first ... not the feelings. What actualism – the wide and wondrous path to actual freedom – is on about is a ‘virtual freedom’ (which is not to be confused with cyber-space’s ‘virtual reality’) wherein the ‘good’ feelings – the affectionate and desirable emotions and passions (those that are loving and trusting) are minimised along with the ‘bad’ feelings – the hostile and invidious emotions and passions (those that are hateful and fearful) – so that one is free to feel good, feel happy and feel perfect for 99% of the time.

K B:
And this gets into the related point about attitudes towards the physical versus mental/emotional..

AF has adopted a manichean point of view on this. The physical is the god/savior/truth. And there is no way about it, the mental/emotional has to be the evil and degraded element. Calling it a parasite because "thats how things are" is a consequence of making a division in the first place and putting one side on the pedestal.

The dogma of AF is all about the limited emotional model. What is the shadow side of that?


I don't agree that AF has adopted a manichean point of view - assuming you refer to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manichaeism (which I had not heard of before). I also don't think AF is a limited emotional model, not in the way Daniel defines it in his book. AF leads to elimination of both good AND bad feelings. Limited emotional range models generally are about eliminating negative emotions. I am not aware of anyone else talking about eliminating all feelings except Bernadette Roberts and that's a whole 'nother kettle of fish.

Craig

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/26/10 9:13 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:


2) Ignore frustration with this pursuit and get back to enjoying now in a precise, clear, sensate way. ..............................................This is so refreshing done well that this sort of thing really helps reinforce the practice as being something nice to incline to, and when it results in PCEs, so much stronger is the pull.



Another thing to lookout for someone who wants to pursue Actual Freedom is to be careful when ignoring frustration. It is likely that you may start to take decisions which you normally would not and financially, you may get hurt. Before starting on this path, it will be prudent if you have some bank balance to lean on. The pull can be so strong that it can get hard to let go of the AF method and you might continue to make bad decisions because you ignore frustrations. Even after 2 months of letting go of AF method, I still don't get frustrated to learn not to make bad decisions.

In case of Buddhism, you may get help from others and if you let go of everything, you can still survive being a monk! That is not an option with AF.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/27/10 3:36 AM as a reply to Change A..
Aman A.:

Although accidents do happen in normal life as well but I think that AF method increases the likelihood of an accident happening. If you are in a job where you could get hurt, then you should think thrice and don't give in to the desire for the high of the PCE state. I gave up when I almost got into an accident which could have killed me.

I have read Tarin's account of how he also was about to be overrun by a truck while biking and that he wasn't disturbed by it. I think it happened in the first place because of AF increasing the likelihood of an accident happening. This makes me wonder if this is the reason as to why some actually free people are very concerned about their safety which to me seems delusional.


the conclusion that you draw from my account is so bizarre that i am having a hard time figuring out how to reply with a straight face.

firstly, i was not about to be overrun by a truck, nor did i write that i was (an aside: could you perhaps have imagined this due to your job-related fears?). for clarity's sake, i will reprint the text you referred to above:

tarin greco:

i was inches away from being hit by a reckless driver yesterday and would certainly have been had i not deftly swerved my bicycle out of his careening path. i watched in marvel as his gleaming bumper came inches from my rear wheel and felt no panic whatsoever either before, during, or after this encounter.. and as the situation was such that i had no way to confront him (by the time i intended to, he was already in the distance, speeding away to endanger other people), i simply carried on with my plan of travel.. equally unirritated by his dangerously careless attitude. i was having just as perfect a day then as i am having right now here in this actual world.


*

secondly, you chose to make particular mention in your post (which point was to warn others about the physical danger you suppose pursuing the actualism method or achieving an actual freedom contains) that i wasn't disturbed by the narrowly-averted accident. are you suggesting, in any way, that not having been disturbed by it was dangerous to me... or that having been disturbed by it would have somehow reduced the actual danger?

if so, you would have to substantiate either or both of those claims for them to make sense, and with a heavy dose of evidence, i might add, as i can tell you from firsthand experience both of the actualism method (which brought 'me' to my senses, literally) and of the condition of being actually free (in which i experience myself, apperceptively, as this actual human being doing what is good for it) that, far from either of those things having even remotely endangered me, they have done just the opposite - they have enabled me to ensure my safety and security as best i possibly can.

i'll post another example another example of the training i've done (including, essentially, the actualism method) having come in handy at a potentially dangerous time below; i wrote this, last year, prior to having become actually free, about an event that occurred prior to my having even gotten enlightened (and so, at the time, i was much as you are - a thinker of my thoughts):

tarin greco:

i got shot at with a machine gun while walking down the street last year. i remember the popping sounds behind me, the screeching sounds of the perpetrators' accelerating vehicle, the breaking glass, and without looking to confirm my interpretation, dove behind a parked car and simultaneously shouted (as to be heard over the noise), in a commanding tone (as to be heard as an authority to be obeyed amid the commotion), to the person i was walking with to do the same, who then did. i remember crawling forward to seek better cover, even as our assailants drove away, and remember looking back at people laying on the ground a few metres behind me, one of whom was clearly in pain. i remember the tingle of fear, as well as the thrill of being confronted by a challenging situation, as i assessed it, and decided that it was now safe to get up.. i was the first one up. the man who had been shot was being attended to by his companions, one or two of whom were now also rising, and i decided it would be better to not get involved in that situation, as anything i could do for him was already being done by those with whom he was acquainted anyway.

i chose, instead, to stand some distance away from the situation and watch it unfold. my friend, who had first frozen but then also got down, possibly just in time, was now standing too, and was visibly shaken. the others were now shouting and flailing their arms and looking around anxiously. i too felt jittery as i felt the adrenaline surging through my body, but was quickly bored with it. is this all that fear does? it gets in the way in a big way. in the face of sufficient intelligence, and reflexes, with which i think at least most people are equipped, fear is something of a nuisance. this experience confirmed for me what i'd suspected before, which is that fear is a quick and often dirty way to try and stay alive, but the struggle often confounds the results. i was clearly the person least afraid in this situation, yet was probably the one most likely to survive it, as i was the least hindered by the freeze/fight/flight responses engendered by fear, given my quick response as well as recovery time. i have no military training, no real martial arts training, have never been shot at before, and am only reasonably fit. the only thing i had going for me was experience in consciously examining fear and a vested interest in never being afraid again.


*

thirdly, your warning to others who work a job in which they could get hurt to 'think thrice and don't give in to the desire for the high of the PCE state' comes at a funny place in the discussion, as only shortly further up the page, an emergency physician confirms the safety of, and sense he sees in, performing chest surgery while in a pce:

Daniel M. Ingram:

The arguments for the emotive life seem to make so much sense to Cycling Daniel, except that PCE Daniel now knows that he can function just fine and in fact much better when the emotions and drives either very subtle or seem to be not happening at all. This is definitely one of those things that Cycling Daniel can't understand worth a darn except by memory and theory, and is truly a case of paradigms and perspectives being profoundly influenced by the quality of perception itself. As I have started to get used to being at work in my very high-volume, high-intensity emergency department physician job where I have to be extremely clear and on-target in my interactions with people, my processing of extremely complex information and my ability to be with what is happening, I can now attest that doing this in PCE mode is way better than Cycle Mode, which can be problematic at times, even at the arahat level.

I have worked probably a total of 5-10 shifts worth of work now in PCE mode and so have a pretty solid basis for comparison, and there is simply no argument at this point for Cycle Mode at all in that very high-stakes and demanding situation from my current point of view. It did take a little while to get used to the fact that the cues to do things are different and the thing functions differently (an example being that in Cycle Mode I might remember to order a chest x-ray after putting in a central line because there was this weird nagging ache in my stomach that I would look at and try to figure out and then would emerge the realization that I forgot to do that as compared to just the body remembering and doing that, which is so much more clean and less fatigue-producing and more pleasant all around), but the adjustment has been relatively easy in comparison to all sorts of other things I have had to adjust to, such as functioning in the Dark Night.


*

lastly, something i had been suspecting for a while, but only now, after having become actually free, am i able to confirm:

the startle reflex occurs independently of fear, and in a situation involving both, actually precedes it, such that the fear which accompanies the reflex is actually a fear of of the reflexive response itself (as strange as it sounds, you are only ever afraid of your own physical responses and the illusions with which you associate them).

as such, in addition to the sensory clarity afforded in a pce that can better alert one to an impending danger, the physical reactions required to quickly avoid it are fully intact... and are completely unhindered by fear and anxiety[1].

tarin

[1] fear and anxiety do not merely not stick to awareness when they arise; rather, they do not arise at all, because far from there simply being nothing for them to stick to should they arise, there is nothing for them to even arise from to begin with (the conditions for their - and any other condition of affliction's - arising are kaput).

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/27/10 2:56 AM as a reply to tarin greco.
Tarin did AF result of a complete "purification" of what happens inside the spine? I mean, can you clearly correlate progress towards a PCE with having less and less "reactive mess," or "painful knots" inside the spine?

I personally am finding that, willing or unwilling, stuff keeps getting unblocked there (nowadays it is greatly focused on the neck and mid-brain). And as it does, my experience seems to acquire some features of PCE. Sensory clarity has increased so much in the past six months that every walk in the park is like a wondrous dream. I remember smiling like a child at passing birds or particularly delicate flowers...

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/27/10 8:24 AM as a reply to tarin greco.
tarin greco:


the conclusion that you draw from my account is so bizarre that i am having a hard time figuring out how to reply with a straight face.

firstly, i was not about to be overrun by a truck, nor did i write that i was (an aside: could you perhaps have imagined this due to your job-related fears?). for clarity's sake, i will reprint the text you referred to above:



I imagined the vehicle as a truck and where you stated being hit, I said overrun.


tarin greco:

secondly, you chose to make particular mention in your post (which point was to warn others about the physical danger you suppose pursuing the actualism method or achieving an actual freedom contains) that i wasn't disturbed by the narrowly-averted accident. are you suggesting, in any way, that not having been disturbed by it was dangerous to me... or that having been disturbed by it would have somehow reduced the actual danger?


I think that it is the tendency to ignore frustrations that can make one miss the sounds that the vehicle of reckless driver was making. Being in the now, one may not project the course of the vehicle in the future which might hit or overrun you.


tarin greco:

thirdly, your warning to others who work a job in which they could get hurt to 'think thrice and don't give in to the desire for the high of the PCE state' comes at a funny place in the discussion, as only shortly further up the page, an emergency physician confirms the safety of, and sense he sees in, performing chest surgery while in a pce:


It is too early to say about the safety issues. I will wait and watch as to how it goes with Daniel. I still think that the desire for the high of PCE state can make one do things which your normally would not. Have you returned to work?

tarin greco:

lastly, something i had been suspecting for a while, but only now, after having become actually free, am i able to confirm:

the startle reflex occurs independently of fear, and in a situation involving both, actually precedes it, such that the fear which accompanies the reflex is actually a fear of of the reflexive response itself (as strange as it sounds, you are only ever afraid of your own physical responses and the illusions with which you associate them).

as such, in addition to the sensory clarity afforded in a pce that can better alert one to an impending danger, the physical reactions required to quickly avoid it are fully intact... and are completely unhindered by fear and anxiety[1].


I agree with you that startle reflex precedes fear. I don't agree with your conclusion though.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/27/10 5:14 PM as a reply to Change A..
Hello,

I may later re-read the thread and post more specific replies, but here are a couple of things that struck me as worth mentioning.

Re: "the dark side":

Good / evil is a false dichotomy used by a self to justify one's perceived ideals and / or needs. I think a more appropriate, useful dichotomy to bare in mind is: selfishness / the lack thereof. Which, said another way: good and evil / perfection. Although, it is worth noting that only perfection actually exists, and so even the differentiation I provide is kind of silly.

Re: "absurd to think this (AF) is a new discovery":

I opine that it is likely that human knowledge, ethical and societal advancement has only relatively recently (within the past 200 years, as a very rough, relatively conservative estimate) gained the necessary breadth for the societal hallmarks and individual knowledge which allows for the possibility of the discovery (the first and for each individual after) of the actual freedom methods and processes and those which allow the safety of one as one works toward and later resides in this universe as an actually free person. Though, as has been stated...it really doesn't matter: you can either end the human condition in yourself now, or not.

Here are some things to think about, in no specific order. There are many more, relevant (and similar) factoids, but I think this might be enough to begin with, at least. I used America as the nation-state of example for precise date purposes, as I am most familiar with it (snippets pulled from Wikipedia):

1) Public education gradually spread to other countries, reaching the American State of Massachusetts in 1852 and later to other U.S. states. In 1918, Mississippi was the last state to enact a compulsory attendance law.

2) In 1993, the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois released version 1.0 of Mosaic, and by late 1994 there was growing public interest in the previously academic, technical Internet. By 1996 usage of the word Internet had become commonplace, and consequently, so had its use as a synecdoche in reference to the World Wide Web.

3) The First Amendment was adopted on December 15, 1791. The Amendment states: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

4) Charles Darwin formulated his idea of natural selection in 1838 and was still developing his theory in 1858 when Alfred Russel Wallace sent him a similar theory, and both were presented to the Linnean Society of London in separate papers. At the end of 1859, Darwin's publication of On the Origin of Species explained natural selection in detail and presented evidence leading to increasingly wide acceptance of the occurrence of evolution.

Best,
Trent

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/29/10 4:50 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Hello to all,

I am very interested in what Tarin and Trent have to say about Daniel's pragmatic notes:
Daniel M. Ingram:

Back to the Pragmatic:

Figuring out what is the PCE mode and how to get into it:

My best advice at this point:

1) Fake it until you make it. This is actually really important. Take your best guess about times that things were great, really clear, just fine, and you really appreciated something. Kenneth and I used to call this "grooving" back in the day. Maybe it was a Mind and Body thing, maybe it was the afterglow of the A&P, maybe it was Equanimity, maybe it was the feeling just after a Path, maybe it was looking at a great sunset or just noticing the fantastic color of a blue LED or whatever nice moment of clarity and remember it and try to do that now with anything, a fridge magnet, the play of light through a glass of water, the dots of newsprint on a magazine, where you just groove on the fact of the presentation of things until you start to re-create that feeling of really being here and enjoying it just as it is.
2) Ignore frustration with this pursuit and get back to enjoying now in a precise, clear, sensate way. Open the ears to hear what is around you, avoid rushing anywhere unless you stay in your body when you do it and enjoy the feeling of driving or running or rushing, and the like. When emotions arise, simply stay open and try to ignore them except to maybe give them just the investigative attention needed to see the physical and imagined triggers in a way that allows them to simply fade and be seen as just parts of this fantastic world.
3) Once you have practiced this a while with diligence, you may begin to have PCE's. They may be really short lived and you may wonder if they were some vipassana attainment: ignore those thoughts and vipassana attainments in general, particularly the cycles. If they arise, which they will in anyone who has some solid footing in the vipassana world, realize that they are going to fade with further practice at some point but may get stronger initially as you apply the level of every-moment awake mindfulness that really makes all this possible on either front.
4) Pay attention to how they fade and how to just gently incline back to PCE mode without falling into the trap of re-invigorating the attention wave. This is difficult, or at least I have found it to be so, but after some months I can say I am generally better at than I was before. All this stuff takes practice, so don't get discouraged.
5) Detail reality. This is something I learned along the way for getting into Lucid Dreams and for preparing for Traveling out of body, but it also works really well for AF practice, paradoxically. Really be here at all times, tuning into the spacial aspects, textural aspects, lighting aspects, sonic aspects, and contact with your skin and the world. However, ignore internal reality except as needed, as there is already plenty of that, and this serves to level the playing field, so to speak. Notice the subtle touch of air on your skin, the delight in the richness of colors and shapes, and just give into that. This is so refreshing done well that this sort of thing really helps reinforce the practice as being something nice to incline to, and when it results in PCEs, so much stronger is the pull.

-do u find them useful and more importantly,applicable to people without solid vipassana footing.If so,do you have something to add to optimize the process given by Daniel.
-please elaborate on the differences between what Daniel suggests and the "original AF method",which to me seems a lot more psychological and all around different to Daniel Ingram's notes

I personally find them incredibly useful and even more so in contrast with the various materials presented on the AF site.Judging only by his writing it seams (only seams) that Richard does not want other people attaining AF.I am saying this because i find the site as a whole ,and more importantly, most articles bloated with unnecessary "stuff" .I'm curious what's up with that.As Daniel Ingram very successfully put it, Richard's writing just lacks a clear and precise description of methodology and phenomenology ,which(by my opinion) is the absolutely most important aspect of such writing.Also,I have found Daniel's approach more useful both experientially and logically, even while being technically more difficult to persistently
pull off.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
actualism
Answer
6/29/10 7:02 AM as a reply to Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov.
Hi Bozhidar,

Until two years ago I also found the AFT texts, mainly from the words choices, so much difficult to read. Anyway, James Joyce (Ulysses) was difficult too.
One hint: maybe Richard attempt to create an apperceptive state via his writing style...
A suggestion: read first "Peter´s Journal" (or this section actualism) and next "Richard´s Journal". Peter have a more 'popular' write style.
Good peruse,
Luciano

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
actualism airplane discoveries
Answer
6/29/10 7:38 AM as a reply to Trent ..
Hi Trent,
Good post about the possible reasons why AF method was discovery only in 1981 due a better use of all cumulative human knowledge and experiences.
Regard this flogged controversy, I read an essay that stated the ancient Egyptians could fly: they had bamboo, paper, linen, and all the components needed to build gliders. The Nile Valley has good thermals and reliable winds so they could have had gliders that traveled hundreds of miles in their day. But we know they didn’t because they were ignorant of the laws of aerodynamics even though those laws were as true then as they are now. They didn’t know, so they didn’t go.
Jump some [five thousand?] years, and on 23 October 1906, in Paris, France, Mr. Dumont performed the first officially witnessed European unaided takeoff and flight by a heavier-than-air aircraft. However, today some people still asking:
"Who invented the airplane? Santos-Dumont or the Wright brothers?"
It´s silly.
Don´t matter.
Enjoy the travel emoticon

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/29/10 7:52 AM as a reply to Luciano de Noeme Imoto.
Since I was just waiting for any subtle hint to rant on this, let me share that I find that most examples of Richard's writing style to be a poor man's version of literary ability --- very verbose, with a lot of emphasis on complex vocabulary, dull and repetitive, and a completely misguided idea of what it means to be articulated. And Trent I find it a shame that you decided to emulate it.

Although you might reason it is the most effective way to communicate, I personally feel it is not so. (pun intended) Seriously, don't confuse "writing clearly" with what Richard does. A friend commented to me that it would be really scary if Daniel came out the other side, and instead of writing in his usual clear style, him too would begin "channeling Spock" emoticon

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/29/10 11:22 AM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Here’s my guess about this way of being, based on nothing more than what I gather from what I’ve read about it on DhO and the AF website, and 2 brief conversations about it.

It seems like this would be a human being’s instinctual, physical, and mental processes carrying out as they occur anyways, via physics or any other natural process. A total integration of these processes without the intervention or effort of a separate self or personality, as intervention is not necessary for these processes to occur.

Why isn’t anyone really asking about what the actual sensations of this way of being are like yet, in certain situations that those of us who aren’t actually free experience? There have been many attempts at qualifying, lack of’s, and cause/effect. Here’s what I’m getting at.. If all this is happening of its own accord regardless of an attempt via conditioning to define what is actually happening in any given moment… what physically happens when, for instance, there is laughter without the label of “funny” when a joke is told? It seems like it would go straight from joke being told, to brain processing joke via recollection of already known information, to vibrating of certain parts of body. Is there anything else happening there in between that I’m missing?

How about something that might be more intrinsic than funny? Let’s talk about sex, baby. What are the physical or mental or sensate processes that happen for the initiation of sex to occur? I’m not talking about the actual intercourse, but what precedes it… what is the so-called “desire” to have sex? I realize AF people will say they don’t “desire”, so to clarify, what sensate stuff instead of “desire” is there to have sex? I’m assuming it’s some sort of instinctual thing based on my own experiences of “wanting” sex, but I could be wrong. I guess I'm looking for more of a pinpoint of what "instinctual" physically/sensationally is comprised of. Maybe I should test it out next time I'm about to have sex, but not sure I'll remember to.

If something similar to these examples is what actually happens, it seems like AF is just a streamlining of how one functions… after a process of eliminating what is unnecessary in order to more unobtrusively experience what’s already happening.

Steph

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
doubt actualism fallacy matter of style
Answer
6/29/10 2:01 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Hi Bruno,

Since I was just waiting for any subtle hint to rant on this, let me share that I find that most examples of Richard's writing style to be a poor man's version of literary ability --- very verbose, with a lot of emphasis on complex vocabulary, dull and repetitive, and a completely misguided idea of what it means to be articulated.


You are using the “Cherchez l’homme”: look for the man... and you’ll find the errors. Or in another words: attack the messenger, or "ad hominem", also known as "argumentum ad hominem".

And Trent I find it a shame that you decided to emulate it.


Even Tarin also decided to emulate that writing style, and I also start to love the words and its richness. Of course Mr. Paulo Coelho and others have a much more appeal to some people.

Although you might reason it is the most effective way to communicate, I personally feel it is not so. (pun intended) Seriously, don't confuse "writing clearly" with what Richard does. A friend commented to me that it would be really scary if Daniel came out the other side, and instead of writing in his usual clear style, him too would begin "channeling Spock"


Not the most effective way, but the favoured way due the simplicity of the good news: total 'self'-imolation, both the "ego" and the "soul" using the thought over the emotions, fellings, passions, calentures...
: 'Put simplistically (for maximum effect): the actualism method is about using thought to examine feelings'.
So, the actualism method is experiential. The words chosen are arrows signals to this journey.
However, why not read Peter and Vineeto first? Are they very verbose to you too?

More about this flogged issue here:
http://actualfreedom.com.au/sundry/commonobjections/CRO14.htm
http://actualfreedom.com.au/sundry/commonobjections/CRO12.htm
http://actualfreedom.com.au/sundry/floggedmisconceptions/FFM10.htm

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/29/10 3:02 PM as a reply to Luciano de Noeme Imoto.
Hi Luciano,

Welcome to the Dharma Overground. Nice to have you around.

If you go to the home page, you'll see a little "mission statement", which, while it is cast in terms of Buddhist meditation, still holds here in the Actual Freedom section. I'll quote a few points so you can get the general thrust right away:

  • pragmatism over dogmatism: what works is key (i.e. we don't invest too much time in doctrinal debates removed from personal experience)
  • person responsibility: you take responsibility for the choices you make and what you say and claim (i.e. say it in your own words, don't hide behind too many quotes and links)
  • the spirit of mutual, supportive adventurers on the path (rather than being a bunch of sycophants not speaking from their own direct experience)

In my experience, these guidelines, when followed (not rigidly to the letter, obviously, but in spirit), will lead to truly excellent discussions which benefit both those who participate and those who just lurk or even read them later on in the archive.

In particular, posts of the structure "you're wrong, and you can read this bunch of links to see why" don't really fall into this category, while "It was like this for me when I did that, and here's how I did it. Oh, and here's a helpful link" more often than not contain useful information that is hard to find elsewhere.

Looking forward to many great posts by you,

Cheers!
Florian

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/29/10 3:05 PM as a reply to Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov.
Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov:
Hello to all,

I am very interested in what Tarin and Trent have to say about Daniel's pragmatic notes:


Hi Bozhidar,

I don't find fault with them considering where in the practice I guess him to be (very rough guess by the way). I would say that you could try his instructions out and, if PCE's / EE's happen, then they're solid for you. In other words: try it, if it works, then keep using until they no longer work or the thing is done.

I suspect there will eventually be many more pragmatic practice notes such as these expounded upon, and a more "user friendly" actualism site and/or resource of other kind as well. These sort of things take some time, as giving faulty advise is definitely to be avoided, and there is a higher probability of that when the advise is more directed (such as these sort of instructions).

Trent

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/29/10 3:31 PM as a reply to Steph S.
Hello Steph & Luciano,

Luciano-- thanks for the intriguing story. That's an interesting way of framing the situation.

yana pets:
what physically happens when, for instance, there is laughter without the label of “funny” when a joke is told? It seems like it would go straight from joke being told, to brain processing joke via recollection of already known information, to vibrating of certain parts of body. Is there anything else happening there in between that I’m missing?


I'm not sure if anything is missing from your appraisal, but it is a simple process regardless. I don't think the event of laughing has changed a single bit since this condition came about. I think that's because it is a spontaneous event regardless of one's state/stage of consciousness. By the way, the label funny is sometimes still applied in my case, as I sometimes remark such after laughing ("hahaha; that's funny").

yana pets:
What are the physical or mental or sensate processes that happen for the initiation of sex to occur? I’m not talking about the actual intercourse, but what precedes it… what is the so-called “desire” to have sex? I realize AF people will say they don’t “desire”, so to clarify, what sensate stuff instead of “desire” is there to have sex? I’m assuming it’s some sort of instinctual thing based on my own experiences of “wanting” sex, but I could be wrong. I guess I'm looking for more of a pinpoint of what "instinctual" physically/sensationally is comprised of. Maybe I should test it out next time I'm about to have sex, but not sure I'll remember to.


What precedes it could be any number of thing: one's companion indicating interest in any number of way, nothing much going on so "hey, why not," in some cases when "one thing leads to another" such as when play wrestling or showering together, and so on. To be a bit more specific, I think what always precedes the event (whether I consciously note this each time or or not) is the knowledge that sex is mutually fun, intimate, enjoyable and interesting. Engaging in it freely is a delight...when AF, one is simply no longer compelled to do so.

Trent

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/29/10 4:50 PM as a reply to Florian.
Hi Flor and thanks for the warm welcome and kind advices,

I´m from Brazil, and portuguese is my first language (english is the third). So, don´t wait for "great"(sic) posts.
For those who find the actualists "writing style" to be quite frank, it's what we have to say that's important, and not the way we say it.
Gotcha?
Always sincere but never serious,
Luciano

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/30/10 12:11 AM as a reply to Luciano de Noeme Imoto.
Hi Luciano,

I'm from Germany; English is my second language. People here come from all kinds of places. Don't worry about that.

I think that posts saying something important in the writer's own words are "great". I don't mean great grammar but great content.

Cheers,
Florian

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
actualism actualists joke
Answer
6/30/10 9:14 AM as a reply to Florian.
Amen Florian,

Now some correlated jokes to you and Bruno:

Q: How many actualists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Into what?

Q: How many actualists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Six. One to turn the bulb, one for support, and four to relate to the experience.

Q: How many actualists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Only one, but the bulb has got to really WANT to change.

Q: How many actualists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: None: Actualists aren't afraid of the dark.

And so on...

Cheers and cheese,
Luciano

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/30/10 9:46 AM as a reply to Luciano de Noeme Imoto.
Hi Luciano,

Heh - here's one I've been wondering about, given some of the reactions (including my own) about "AF on DhO":

How many insight meditators does it take to get a PCE?

Anyway, I'd suggest to start a new thread for jokes. We're way off-topic now.

Cheers,
Florian

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
explaining jokes flooged reactions new paradigmas
Answer
6/30/10 1:17 PM as a reply to Florian.
Not off-topic at all: we are giving (and reading) great examples of "Cycling Mode" in action.
The reason I say so is that the first response to something radical like Actualism tends to be in opposition to the idea.
But I know you understood my point.
More cheese to you,
Luciano

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
6/30/10 3:11 PM as a reply to Trent ..
Trent, thanks for the direct responses. I was trying to break this down with pretty simple examples... mostly because it seems like there's a lot of over-intellectualizing and criticism of this topic in the various threads. There are practitioners who come from various traditions who I'm sure are used to having others be skeptical of their traditions... and a common thread btwn answers to skeptics is.. much of this stuff cannot be rationalized or explained intellectually and has to be put into practice to be understood fully. So if that's true with other traditions, why would it not be true for AF? When the end goal of a practice is happiness and harmlessness (and many traditions have a goal similar to this), I'm not sure what the real issue is. It's just another way of getting there. Maybe the skeptics should try it out, just as an experiment, for a little bit.. and if they find out it sucks or is totally false, then stop. I doubt there would be irreversible harm if they decided their own tradition was false after a while, and decided to stop, so as above, the same is probably true with this aspect of AF.

Steph

[edited to take out quote of Trent's reply to mine from above]

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/1/10 2:36 AM as a reply to Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov.
Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov:
Hello to all,

I am very interested in what Tarin and Trent have to say about Daniel's pragmatic notes:
Daniel M. Ingram:

Back to the Pragmatic:

Figuring out what is the PCE mode and how to get into it:

My best advice at this point:

1) Fake it until you make it. This is actually really important. Take your best guess about times that things were great, really clear, just fine, and you really appreciated something. Kenneth and I used to call this "grooving" back in the day. Maybe it was a Mind and Body thing, maybe it was the afterglow of the A&P, maybe it was Equanimity, maybe it was the feeling just after a Path, maybe it was looking at a great sunset or just noticing the fantastic color of a blue LED or whatever nice moment of clarity and remember it and try to do that now with anything, a fridge magnet, the play of light through a glass of water, the dots of newsprint on a magazine, where you just groove on the fact of the presentation of things until you start to re-create that feeling of really being here and enjoying it just as it is.
2) Ignore frustration with this pursuit and get back to enjoying now in a precise, clear, sensate way. Open the ears to hear what is around you, avoid rushing anywhere unless you stay in your body when you do it and enjoy the feeling of driving or running or rushing, and the like. When emotions arise, simply stay open and try to ignore them except to maybe give them just the investigative attention needed to see the physical and imagined triggers in a way that allows them to simply fade and be seen as just parts of this fantastic world.
3) Once you have practiced this a while with diligence, you may begin to have PCE's. They may be really short lived and you may wonder if they were some vipassana attainment: ignore those thoughts and vipassana attainments in general, particularly the cycles. If they arise, which they will in anyone who has some solid footing in the vipassana world, realize that they are going to fade with further practice at some point but may get stronger initially as you apply the level of every-moment awake mindfulness that really makes all this possible on either front.
4) Pay attention to how they fade and how to just gently incline back to PCE mode without falling into the trap of re-invigorating the attention wave. This is difficult, or at least I have found it to be so, but after some months I can say I am generally better at than I was before. All this stuff takes practice, so don't get discouraged.
5) Detail reality. This is something I learned along the way for getting into Lucid Dreams and for preparing for Traveling out of body, but it also works really well for AF practice, paradoxically. Really be here at all times, tuning into the spacial aspects, textural aspects, lighting aspects, sonic aspects, and contact with your skin and the world. However, ignore internal reality except as needed, as there is already plenty of that, and this serves to level the playing field, so to speak. Notice the subtle touch of air on your skin, the delight in the richness of colors and shapes, and just give into that. This is so refreshing done well that this sort of thing really helps reinforce the practice as being something nice to incline to, and when it results in PCEs, so much stronger is the pull.

-do u find them useful and more importantly,applicable to people without solid vipassana footing.If so,do you have something to add to optimize the process given by Daniel.


1 and 2 are applicable to people in general; 3 and 4 maybe only so to those coming from a vipassana perspective. 5 is sort of the same as 1.

i won't add anything to them right now, as i think he's on the right track already and don't find anything particularly relevant to add (yet).

Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov:

-please elaborate on the differences between what Daniel suggests and the "original AF method",which to me seems a lot more psychological and all around different to Daniel Ingram's notes


the 'original af method' (in more or less my own words) is to ask yourself 'how am i experiencing this moment of being alive?' and use it to propel yourself/be pulled toward the pce. its basically a way of looking right to apperception, which is the pce itself (a pce is how you are actually experiencing this moment of being alive) .. or, if that is not available, looking at *how you feel* in/about this moment of being alive. if you feel bad, then here is it suggested that you remember the last time you felt fine and look to see what caused that to change.. and to see how whatever (reason) that was, it certainly doesn't beat enjoying this moment of being alive, which reminds you to do it (and tada, you're back to feeling fine). if you feel good already, good.. and if you feel great, well great, all the better... but what is it that you are experiencing which feels good, or great... and can you see what about it is imitative of the pce? if so, excellent.. use it to get back to the pce. but if not, just keep on keeping on (and enjoy it). things will become more clear along the way as long.

did you understand 'the original af method' differently?

if so, does my presentation above clear it up any?

Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov:

I personally find them incredibly useful and even more so in contrast with the various materials presented on the AF site.Judging only by his writing it seams (only seams) that Richard does not want other people attaining AF.I am saying this because i find the site as a whole ,and more importantly, most articles bloated with unnecessary "stuff". I'm curious what's up with that.


perhaps some of the 'stuff' that you (and from what i have read and heard, so many others) are (dis)regarding as 'unnecessary' is in fact part of the instruction, given in prose form for examination and reflection, rather than recipe form given for implementation?

i certainly didn't find his writing bloated with things unnecessary.

Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov:

As Daniel Ingram very successfully put it, Richard's writing just lacks a clear and precise description of methodology and phenomenology ,which(by my opinion) is the absolutely most important aspect of such writing.Also,I have found Daniel's approach more useful both experientially and logically, even while being technically more difficult to persistently
pull off.


well, stick to what works for you then.

speaking of which, how has the actualism method (in any format) worked for you in practice? what results have you seen/are you seeing?

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/2/10 4:38 AM as a reply to tarin greco.
Hi Tarin,
thanks for the reply.While i didn't understand the method much differently,I practiced it in a wrong manner->"too verbally",this caused frustration and aversion.Trent's post caused me to reread some articles on the AF site and this rereading changed my perspective and thus practice.Your presentation is very good and helped me "wrap" the method very concisely "in my head".
Also the bit about comparing being happy and whatever unpleasant feeling you experience at the moment is very helpful and i find it important.

As for my progress.I remember of two experiences that could have been a PCE:the first was completely unintentional-while playing table tennis;the second was more or less intentional-i was in a forest and was trying to "just be"(whatever that meant for me at the moment).Both times i was unaware of the concept of a PCE.Since starting to practice the AF method(or more precisely trying to practice it) i have only only experienced the following experience(which generally happens after i have successfully dismantled a "bad feeling" ):
A noticeable shift occurs and after it there is much more clarity;the experience is dominated by the senses,but feelings(both "good" and "bad") are still there,just a lot less pronounced ;The "I" is still present but in a less intrusive matter and certainly "full out" "there" if i look for it;The duration is between a few seconds and a couple of minutes,the shorter ones being more probable to occur.From what I've read this is most likely an "Excellence Experience" or it is just unusual for me for the senses to be the largest part of my experience and i feel the need to label it(the difference between the two is a bit unclear to me).

On a side note.Remembering the "table tennis experience" i wonder what is the difference between an EE(possibly PCE too)and the concept of "being in the flow"("being in the zone") Flow.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
excellence experiences flow the zone satori pce
Answer
7/1/10 9:07 AM as a reply to Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov.
On a side note.Remembering the "table tennis experience" i wonder what is the difference between an EE(possibly PCE too)and the concept of "being in the flow"("being in the zone") Flow.


"Excellence Experiences"(EE) and "Flow" also have differences between each other.
Both are not a Pure Consciousness Experience.
EE are like that exquisite calm before the storm or like that sunday morning sensation... And still having psychic waves in a very low frequence.
Flow is typical from sports and martial arts, even happening in whatever physical ativity. But in martial arts and marathon this Flow state - and its endorphins - abounds. EE don´t need stress, but Flow needs. That´s why the Flow is an Altered state of consciousness (ASC). Fortunately, the Flow is temporary like EE.
Btw, a lot of martial artists mistakes the Flow - and sometimes the EE - with "Satori" (see the classical case of Mr. Ueshiba´s "enlightenment" in Aikido). And Mr. Steven Seagal of course emoticon

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/4/10 6:13 PM as a reply to tarin greco.
I am so glad that so many people are having such a good and clear discussion.

I should add that I have Tarin and Trent to thank for a tremendous amount of the inspiration and information behind my posting of methods to get into the PCE and all sorts of other stuff about this topic, though there are my own experience and experiments as well, obviously, but that being said, those experiments are based largely on their information and advice. If I had to go on the AF material rather than their material, as they did when they started, I can barely imagine having seen what I have seen so far.

I flew Tarin out to my house just shortly after he got back to LA from his visit to Richard and the rest in Australia and got his AF. We spent many hours over a few days talking about this stuff with him attempting to explain this stuff to me. The copy of Richard's Journal I am now struggling through is Tarin's on loan to me.

Before that, Tarin and Trent were at a gathering last summer of some DhO types in Minnesota, and while I had little interest and understanding at that time of what they were talking about, I think that some of it got in anyway.

Tarin and Trent have been helping me along the way these last few months by their posts here and some personal communications, and I am very grateful for that.

Anyway, I just want to give credit where credit is due.

This sort of personal contact is of great value and has helped tremendously. I recommend it if at all possible.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/4/10 2:40 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Hi Daniel,

First of all, thank you for sharing your experiences and I appreciate your inclination towards clarity/practicality than dogma. I have found your above advice in regards to inducing PCEs or orienting oneself towards one, quite useful - and I tend to incline myself towards the sensory experiences on everyday events myself (though it hasn't yet moved towards the sort of intense practice required to induce PCEs itself).

When you suggest to practice tuning into the sensory experience, were you doing that *primarily* in sitting meditation or during everyday events? I have often wondered if doing this sort of practice in a secluded/concentrated (such as sitting meditation) way would be of any significant help compared to doing it during everyday events most of which normally tends to want attention to matters other than sensuosity, such as in the intellectual demands of one's job.

(I know that this is not to discount the AF method of investigating feelings and getting back to feeling good)

-srid

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/4/10 6:17 PM as a reply to First Last.
At this point, I think of this mostly as an eyes-open, daily life sort of practice, though some situations make it easier, such as less content-heavy activities, though those can also be included, and I am sometimes surprised when I slip into something PCE-esque during work.

Driving, bathing, sitting watching nature, walking at a slightly slowed or normal pace, easy conversation, laying on the couch eyes open, or even typing now can all be good times to practice.

I still find eyes-closed times more difficult, but connecting with the breath as it goes down the base of the skull and into the throat is good.

I haven't tried this sitting at all. Perhaps I should do the experiment just to see how it goes.

Daniel

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/5/10 7:01 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Sorry for my not so great English skills. Im from Germany(4 : 0) and would like to say thankyou to Tarin, Trent and Daniel. Really helped me alot. A few days ago I listened to the Hurrican Ranch discussion and heard about that Technique, "turning the light of awareness onto awareness itself. "
This really got something going for me, it was like putting two mirrors together and seeing endless pictures. The whole thing somehow took care of itself and it brought me directly from Anagami to Arahant in Pce Mode. So I thought wow this is great, , the I indentifiction was gone, The perspective Shift was from looking through the noodle in the soup to seeing the noodle itself in the soup ;-) , all on one side. What appeared to me after a short time was the absence of the attention you need to meditate. But it wasnt a problem I just enjoyed this great state and was happy just eating a watermelon, looking at a bird or swimming in the ocean. After a few days i felt like man wassup i need to get those attention back, i needed one whole day to get back into meditation and was back into conventional Arahant mode, no identification but nervousness, cycling, affection and so on. But i didnt realized that till i read this post. After that i just wanted to be back to PCE which is so much more what i was going for, now im innit for about five days, also during sleep and its kind of fascinating, peaceful and beautiful.

Thanksalot Tarin and Trent for your information.

Some questions which appeal to me

1.)To Daniel i think youre also a musician, im doing electronic music and noticed the absence of feelings like longing, lonelyness, melancholy and stuff while listening and making music, this beautiful sadness kind of stuff. On the other hand theres a great bodily feel for rhythmn, texture and sound depth, directly experienced which is great. I would like to hear some experience you have with this.



2.)To Tarin and Trent. Where do you think is the role of the brahmaviharas, especially metta, love in AF. From your personal experience. Is it also gone as an affective feeling ?? Or is someone in this mode through paying so much attention to life itself somehow the love itself ;-) you surely know what i mean, theres a deep kind of joy here but how is it in a relationship with a partner for instance ?? Is there anything lost ?? If not I stay here cause this mode seems to be the way i want to live. Its amazing. So much to discover. Great !

By the way Reflexes are fully funtionaL had a situation with a wild dog, and they clearly working, but nearly as no fear with it, just a little stomach feeling.

Thanks guys, would love to hear youre experiences and views on the questions. ;-)

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/5/10 4:30 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Hi Daniel,

First, congratulations for your audacity! Without experimentation, we might all be living in caves and using rocks as tools.
Now, one question. You wrote:

If I had to go on the AF material rather than their material, as they did when they started, I can barely imagine having seen what I have seen so far.


Sometimes this an passant assertions seems to dismiss the AFT website´s content due some resentment or (you name the commom reactions/objections to AF).
Is this your case?

This sort of personal contact is of great value and has helped tremendously. I recommend it if at all possible.


Personal contact with an actually free human being is really great, but not indispensable. Fortunately! Even virtual contacts like in this forum and others discussion lists in the internet works well. And the new Richard´s book* could bring more data in this subject regard human relationships.
Anyway, another person being actually free always increases the possibility of setting a chain-reaction in process. It´s amazing!
Sincerely,
Luciano

* http://groups.yahoo.com/group/actualfreedom/message/8630

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/14/10 9:00 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Sorry, I dunno if I should post here anymore or not since the discussion seems to have lost its momentum.

Do you think that practicing AF-Methods while practicing Vipassana may be counter productive in some way?
For example, I've found the AF method of HAIETMOBA very helpful in dealing with "stuff", with the whole track down why you are feeling bad and everything (not always though). Currently I'm stuck in the Dark Night and don't have much concentration ability, so these AF methods are helpful in getting better. As far as I can recall I've had a lot of EEs (atleast according to the description presented in this thread and on the AF website), but I don't think I could call them full PCEs as there is still a slight sense of "me" and it doesn't have a full end of suffering "feel" to it, but it's still something entirely different from my normal way of perception and a lot of what you describe makes sense to me. Do you think it would be training in virtue? I want to complete atleast stream-entry before setting AF as the goal simply for the sake of seeing what kind of effect a fruition has.

On a side note, it seems that all of the people who attained AF were enlightened beforehand (Richard, Trent, Tarin, and maybe Daniel later). Is there anyone who wasn't enlightened beforehand?

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/15/10 12:46 AM as a reply to ManZ A.
ManZ A:
Sorry, I dunno if I should post here anymore or not since the discussion seems to have lost its momentum.

Do you think that practicing AF-Methods while practicing Vipassana may be counter productive in some way?
For example, I've found the AF method of HAIETMOBA very helpful in dealing with "stuff", with the whole track down why you are feeling bad and everything (not always though). Currently I'm stuck in the Dark Night and don't have much concentration ability, so these AF methods are helpful in getting better. As far as I can recall I've had a lot of EEs (atleast according to the description presented in this thread and on the AF website), but I don't think I could call them full PCEs as there is still a slight sense of "me" and it doesn't have a full end of suffering "feel" to it, but it's still something entirely different from my normal way of perception and a lot of what you describe makes sense to me. Do you think it would be training in virtue? I want to complete atleast stream-entry before setting AF as the goal simply for the sake of seeing what kind of effect a fruition has.

On a side note, it seems that all of the people who attained AF were enlightened beforehand (Richard, Trent, Tarin, and maybe Daniel later). Is there anyone who wasn't enlightened beforehand?


Hi ManZ A

There are definitely several people who didn't go through enlightenment by their own estimate - Peter pioneered and Vineeto confirmed the "direct route" to actual freedom.

I find that PCEs so starkly contrast from everyday reality that if I'm wondering if it's a PCE, it's not. That doesn't stop me continuing to wonder each time I'm in an EE. When I'm not in a PCE I forget.

Craig

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 2:38 AM as a reply to Jeff Grove.
Jeff Grove:

Jeff Grove Hi Tarin, Thanks for identifying where I am going wrong and pointing me in the right direction. The feedback you have supplied is fantastic and the guidance I needed, much appreciated


you're welcome.

Jeff Grove:

tarin greco do you notice that the unconscious trigger which starts thoughts rising is, itself, an affective experience?

Jeff Grove One I have really noticed that triggers the thoughts is that I have some unconscious prejudices towards certain types of people which creates a slight tightening around the stomach as a response, a coiling action like winding spring, fear then the thoughts can go off in all sorts of imaginative directions.

tarin greco if so, do you find it helpful either to locate it in a bodily way (where in the body did you feel something concomitant with the basic passional experience which interrupted the pce?) or to notice how it ripples your attention like a subtle and quick distortion (such that the clarity, immediacy, and stressless-ness of the pce are affected).. or both?

Jeff Grove Thanks for the pointer I need to investigate more


have you, upon investigating more, discovered that the tightening around the stomach as a response, the coiling action like winding spring, fear, etc, that you've observed ... are all triggered by feelings which come into play in the experience of what you call 'some unconscious prejudices towards certain types of people'?

here, what was previously unconscious can certainly become conscious (you can become conscious of it).

Jeff Grove:

tarin greco my advice here is look for what is masquerading as 'thought'.. attend closer to the trigger itself (feel it when it occurs).

you mention the heart centre area.. i say get a sense of what's going on there (feel it out) but, rather than set up guard there, trace the trigger back even further downward, into your solar plexus centre... and if you can still find the trace and trail here, then follow it all the way to just past your navel, where your hara/tan tien/core centre [is located].

Jeff Grove I have been using focusing around the tan tien to investigate, I will dig deeper as suggested


what has digging deeper as suggested (to the place below the tan tien, not the tan tien) revealed to you?


Jeff Grove:

tarin greco i found the above advice useful in a breakthrough kind of way (and have written about it some - if the above exercise resonates with you, let me know and i will post it).

[...]

Jeff Grove it would be great if you could post it, I have been using the Focusing method around the chakras and a type of self inquiry at the chakras and there is certainly an emotional response to the energies associated at these locations.


ok... but again, how do you find 'the focusing method' to be useful? perhaps more specifically, how has having had 'an emotional response to the energies associated at [the chakras]' been useful?

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 3:05 AM as a reply to Change A..
Aman A.:
tarin greco:


the conclusion that you draw from my account is so bizarre that i am having a hard time figuring out how to reply with a straight face.

firstly, i was not about to be overrun by a truck, nor did i write that i was (an aside: could you perhaps have imagined this due to your job-related fears?). for clarity's sake, i will reprint the text you referred to above:



I imagined the vehicle as a truck and where you stated being hit, I said overrun.


well, you also appear to have imagined that i stated being hit, as i stated no such thing.. what i wrote was that 'i was inches away from being hit'.

is it possible that you imagined this due to your job-related fears?


Aman A.:

tarin greco:

secondly, you chose to make particular mention in your post (which point was to warn others about the physical danger you suppose pursuing the actualism method or achieving an actual freedom contains) that i wasn't disturbed by the narrowly-averted accident. are you suggesting, in any way, that not having been disturbed by it was dangerous to me... or that having been disturbed by it would have somehow reduced the actual danger?


I think that it is the tendency to ignore frustrations that can make one miss the sounds that the vehicle of reckless driver was making. Being in the now, one may not project the course of the vehicle in the future which might hit or overrun you.


what about the actualism method suggests to you that its practice will lead to an increase in any tendency to ignore frustrations... and what about the condition of actual freedom suggests to you that there is any frustration to ignore whatsoever?

speaking from the experience of having practised the actualism method, i found that my tendency was to treat my frustrations more delicately and lightly, and investigate them as clearly as i could (and prevent their occurrence from having a detrimental effect on my daily life). this is a far cry from ignoring those frustrations.

speaking from the experience of living, day in and day out, an actual freedom, i find no frustrations to ignore at all. things which may have frustrated 'me' don't bother me in the slightest.

i am every bit as capable of projecting the course of a vehicle which might hit me as i have ever been (and perhaps am now more so) ... evidenced by my having been able to dodge an extremely reckless driver as quickly as i did.

Aman A.:

tarin greco:

thirdly, your warning to others who work a job in which they could get hurt to 'think thrice and don't give in to the desire for the high of the PCE state' comes at a funny place in the discussion, as only shortly further up the page, an emergency physician confirms the safety of, and sense he sees in, performing chest surgery while in a pce:


It is too early to say about the safety issues. I will wait and watch as to how it goes with Daniel. I still think that the desire for the high of PCE state can make one do things which your normally would not. Have you returned to work?


desiring the high of a pce will certainly not bring one back to it, that's for sure. the only reliable way i ever found to induce a pce was to attend to the immediate quality of what i was experiencing, there and then. and whatever attempting to induce a pce by those means may have made me do which i would not have done otherwise, in my experience, was entirely beneficial and entirely worth it.

and no, i have not yet returned to work as such (i am currently instead exploring the possibility of a different means of employment).

Aman A.:

tarin greco:

lastly, something i had been suspecting for a while, but only now, after having become actually free, am i able to confirm:

the startle reflex occurs independently of fear, and in a situation involving both, actually precedes it, such that the fear which accompanies the reflex is actually a fear of of the reflexive response itself (as strange as it sounds, you are only ever afraid of your own physical responses and the illusions with which you associate them).

as such, in addition to the sensory clarity afforded in a pce that can better alert one to an impending danger, the physical reactions required to quickly avoid it are fully intact... and are completely unhindered by fear and anxiety[1].


I agree with you that startle reflex precedes fear. I don't agree with your conclusion though.


do you also agree that the fear which, in a feeling being, often accompanies the startle reflex is actually a fear of the reflexive response itself (and that, as strange as it sounds, you are only ever 'directly' afraid of your own physical responses and the illusions with which you associate them)?

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 3:16 AM as a reply to Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov.
Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov:
Since starting to practice the AF method(or more precisely trying to practice it) i have only only experienced the following experience(which generally happens after i have successfully dismantled a "bad feeling" ):
A noticeable shift occurs and after it there is much more clarity;the experience is dominated by the senses,but feelings(both "good" and "bad") are still there,just a lot less pronounced ;The "I" is still present but in a less intrusive matter and certainly "full out" "there" if i look for it;The duration is between a few seconds and a couple of minutes,the shorter ones being more probable to occur.From what I've read this is most likely an "Excellence Experience" or it is just unusual for me for the senses to be the largest part of my experience and i feel the need to label it(the difference between the two is a bit unclear to me).


regardless of what it was or what people call it, did you like living like that? could you stand to live like that more and more.. would you want to/do you see benefit in doing so?

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 8:34 AM as a reply to tarin greco.
Thanks for the reply Tarin.
Regarding your questions:yes,yes and yes.It is almost absurd to even ask myself whether i want to live like this.The difference is that when I'm in whatever it is,it is naturally apparent that this is how i want to live while when I'm out this is more of a logical deduction based on the memory of this state.
I have one other concern.While i was in exam session the last month and can hardly say i practiced seriously ,when i did,too often instead of examining the feelings with what Richard calls attentiveness I was simply affected by them even more intensively than if I "weren't looking".Of course this leads to distress and at least this is a sign that I am doing something wrong.What I am wondering is how much time should it take to get the hang of it.It seams that I am doing it wrong.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 10:57 AM as a reply to tarin greco.
tarin greco:


well, you also appear to have imagined that i stated being hit, as i stated no such thing.. what i wrote was that 'i was inches away from being hit'.

is it possible that you imagined this due to your job-related fears?



I didn't imagine that you stated being hit because if you read my original post, there I said "about to be overrun" implying that you were "inches away from being hit". So there was no imagination involved there but you are imagining me to have imagined you being hit because of what I wrote in response. It is not so because in the sentence "I imagined the vehicle as a truck and where you stated being hit, I said overrun." I am referring to the sentence not to what happened as in "about to be hit" and "about to be overrun". While writing the sentence, I changed "be" to "being" to make it correct tense but I failed to see that it could be read as you did. I meant the sentence to read "where you stated about to be hit, I said about to be overrun."


tarin greco:


what about the actualism method suggests to you that its practice will lead to an increase in any tendency to ignore frustrations... and what about the condition of actual freedom suggests to you that there is any frustration to ignore whatsoever?

speaking from the experience of having practised the actualism method, i found that my tendency was to treat my frustrations more delicately and lightly, and investigate them as clearly as i could (and prevent their occurrence from having a detrimental effect on my daily life). this is a far cry from ignoring those frustrations.

speaking from the experience of living, day in and day out, an actual freedom, i find no frustrations to ignore at all. things which may have frustrated 'me' don't bother me in the slightest.

i am every bit as capable of projecting the course of a vehicle which might hit me as i have ever been (and perhaps am now more so) ... evidenced by my having been able to dodge an extremely reckless driver as quickly as i did.


I am speaking from my own experience of having practised the actualism method. Good to know that your experience is different but you have quit your job and are now looking for 'different means of employment' (I was going to use my own words here but didn't in case I imagine a part of it as in when I replaced a vehicle with a truck).

tarin greco:


desiring the high of a pce will certainly not bring one back to it, that's for sure. the only reliable way i ever found to induce a pce was to attend to the immediate quality of what i was experiencing, there and then. and whatever attempting to induce a pce by those means may have made me do which i would not have done otherwise, in my experience, was entirely beneficial and entirely worth it.

and no, i have not yet returned to work as such (i am currently instead exploring the possibility of a different means of employment).



I know that desiring the high of a PCE will not bring one back to it, it has to be 'desiring without the desire'.


tarin greco:


do you also agree that the fear which, in a feeling being, often accompanies the startle reflex is actually a fear of the reflexive response itself (and that, as strange as it sounds, you are only ever 'directly' afraid of your own physical responses and the illusions with which you associate them)?

tarin


There is no clear cut distinction there.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/17/10 10:51 AM as a reply to Change A..
Hi Tarin, thanks for the response I have been planning on posting an update.

Your pointers are appreciated. Much to discover

The past couple of weeks my investigation has been around the following:

The Sweet Spot, How and Pure Intent

Digging deep observing the sweet spot and the Tantein I can find a point of balance or still point where there is very little or no movement (instinctual) and no energy rising or following attention. From the stillness I have noticed a lightness, and an expansive emptiness in the body. From here PCE is easier to occur and to find the triggers which disrupt the PCE

When there is movement from this balance point, (disrupts PCE, attention wave) this movement can be for eg. sudden, quick, intensifying, decreasing, or slow. The energy can be subtle, thick, slow, fast but turbulently rises. This turbulent energy moves up below the Tantein, and I have been observing this flow between these 2 points (sweetspot and tantein and the movement). I can observe this movement/energy between the Sweet Spot and the Tantien and use it as an aid to find the bias point of movement using Pure Intent, finding the still point.

Instead of How am I experiencing this moment I have been observing the movement of energy at this moment, How it is Fear, is Desire, is Aggression or is Nurture, fuels the feeling of being, energizes thoughts, creates mind states, is the discriminating self

Observing this with my eyes closed is easier for the very subtle movements. I have had an insight into what is meant by flesh and blood human being (exactly that), watching/feeling this turbulent energy it becomes more discernible

I am managing to maintain PCEs in more active environments such as in the bustle of the inner city as opposed to amongst nature which is a huge step.

I see that Desire, Fear and Nurture mainly shapes my reality. I am 44, Aggression is not as dominate, easy to trigger or the movement is less subtle (might be a testosterone thing) but I can remember when Aggression was behind nearly ever action, just passing another male in the street, all males have experienced it.

We are slaves to instinctual passion while there is this movement it doesn't matter how much you have cultivated non attachment, actions result.

Appreciated
Jeff

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 1:23 PM as a reply to Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov.
Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov:
Thanks for the reply Tarin.
Regarding your questions:yes,yes and yes.It is almost absurd to even ask myself whether i want to live like this.The difference is that when I'm in whatever it is,it is naturally apparent that this is how i want to live while when I'm out this is more of a logical deduction based on the memory of this state.


here's a question that may be worth asking (yourself)... is it a logical deduction (based on the memory of this state) that you already feel a natural draw toward making (because there is some kind of draw to living like that even when you're not in that state)?

Bozhidar Veselinov Mihaylov:

I have one other concern.While i was in exam session the last month and can hardly say i practiced seriously ,when i did,too often instead of examining the feelings with what Richard calls attentiveness I was simply affected by them even more intensively than if I "weren't looking".Of course this leads to distress and at least this is a sign that I am doing something wrong.What I am wondering is how much time should it take to get the hang of it.It seams that I am doing it wrong.


in a nutshell, it can take a little while (days weeks months) to get the actualism investigation going, but can also, it seems, happen much more quickly and smoothly for some. this seems to depend on a variety of factors, not least of which (as you point out) may be whether one is doing it right or not. to this end, i'd like to know what you are doing, and what about it, specifically, seems to indicate to you that you're doing it wrong. would you care to start another thread to explore this?

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 1:55 PM as a reply to Change A..
Aman A.:
tarin greco:


well, you also appear to have imagined that i stated being hit, as i stated no such thing.. what i wrote was that 'i was inches away from being hit'.

is it possible that you imagined this due to your job-related fears?



I didn't imagine that you stated being hit because if you read my original post, there I said "about to be overrun" implying that you were "inches away from being hit". So there was no imagination involved there but you are imagining me to have imagined you being hit because of what I wrote in response. It is not so because in the sentence "I imagined the vehicle as a truck and where you stated being hit, I said overrun." I am referring to the sentence not to what happened as in "about to be hit" and "about to be overrun". While writing the sentence, I changed "be" to "being" to make it correct tense but I failed to see that it could be read as you did. I meant the sentence to read "where you stated about to be hit, I said about to be overrun."


ha! good, as i also failed to see how what i wrote could have been read as my having stated that i had been hit.. but as, in general, i would rather go by what you actually write than by any of the things which i considered you to maybe have meant, i found it most fitting to understand 'where you stated being hit' to mean just that. thank you for the clarification about how this was meant otherwise.

Aman A.:

tarin greco:


what about the actualism method suggests to you that its practice will lead to an increase in any tendency to ignore frustrations... and what about the condition of actual freedom suggests to you that there is any frustration to ignore whatsoever?


I am speaking from my own experience of having practised the actualism method.


well, good, but what about (your own experience of having practised) the actualism method suggests to you that its practice will lead to an increase in any tendency to ignore frustrations?

put more concisely.. why were you ignoring frustrations and calling that 'the actualism method'?



Aman A.:

Good to know that your experience is different but you have quit your job and are now looking for 'different means of employment' (I was going to use my own words here but didn't in case I imagine a part of it as in when I replaced a vehicle with a truck).


i quit my job because i moved (not because i found my previous line of work dangerous due to my practice of the actualism method) and am now looking for a different job because my employment options are simply different where i now live (and not because i would find my previous line of work to be dangerous due to my present condition of being actually free).

Aman A.:

tarin greco:

desiring the high of a pce will certainly not bring one back to it, that's for sure. the only reliable way i ever found to induce a pce was to attend to the immediate quality of what i was experiencing, there and then. and whatever attempting to induce a pce by those means may have made me do which i would not have done otherwise, in my experience, was entirely beneficial and entirely worth it.


I know that desiring the high of a PCE will not bring one back to it, it has to be 'desiring without the desire'.


well, ok, but you brought this matter up (of the possibly danger in being distracted by desiring the high of a pce while in one's workplace) because you wished to issue a warning to others about what you perceive to be the dangers of the actualism method. if you know that desiring the high of a pce will not bring one back to it (and hence cannot be said to be part of the actualism method), why did you warn others about the actualism method as if desiring the high of a pce were part of it?

Aman A.:

tarin greco:

do you also agree that the fear which, in a feeling being, often accompanies the startle reflex is actually a fear of the reflexive response itself (and that, as strange as it sounds, you are only ever 'directly' afraid of your own physical responses and the illusions with which you associate them)?
tarin


There is no clear cut distinction there.


you see no clear cut distinction between what and what.. between the startle reflex and fear?

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 2:29 PM as a reply to tarin greco.
tarin greco:


what about the actualism method suggests to you that its practice will lead to an increase in any tendency to ignore frustrations... and what about the condition of actual freedom suggests to you that there is any frustration to ignore whatsoever?

well, good, but what about (your own experience of having practised) the actualism method suggests to you that its practice will lead to an increase in any tendency to ignore frustrations?

put more concisely.. why were you ignoring frustrations and calling that 'the actualism method'?



The instruction to consider feeling bad as silly may lead one to ignore frustrations.


tarin greco:

i quit my job because i moved (not because i found my previous line of work dangerous due to my practice of the actualism method) and am now looking for a different job because my employment options are simply different where i now live (and not because i would find my previous line of work to be dangerous due to my present condition of being actually free).



I didn't mean that you considered your previous line of work dangerous. What I mean is that one may be tempted to quit ones job trying to be actually free (and that is a desire). If I 'remember' correctly, Trent has done this as well and he suggested others to do it as well.

tarin greco:

well, ok, but you brought this matter up (of the possibly danger in being distracted by desiring the high of a pce while in one's workplace) because you wished to issue a warning to others about what you perceive to be the dangers of the actualism method. if you know that desiring the high of a pce will not bring one back to it (and hence cannot be said to be part of the actualism method), why did you warn others about the actualism method as if desiring the high of a pce were part of it?


In my books, desiring without the desire is still a desire.


tarin greco:



you see no clear cut distinction between what and what.. between the startle reflex and fear?

tarin


Yes, between the startle reflex and fear.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 3:19 PM as a reply to tarin greco.
tarin greco:



have you, upon investigating more, discovered that the tightening around the stomach as a response, the coiling action like winding spring, fear, etc, that you've observed ... are all triggered by feelings which come into play in the experience of what you call 'some unconscious prejudices towards certain types of people'?

here, what was previously unconscious can certainly become conscious (you can become conscious of it).



This is how AF method can make one feel better, it is like becoming your own psychologist and applying the CBT yourself. There is also a chance that while you are at it, you may also pick some weird beliefs of AF such as the universe being infinite and you as universe experiencing itself as a sensate human being.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 3:37 PM as a reply to Change A..
Hi,

Aman A.:
I didn't mean that you considered your previous line of work dangerous. What I mean is that one may be tempted to quit ones job trying to be actually free (and that is a desire). If I 'remember' correctly, Trent has done this as well and he suggested others to do it as well.


I cannot find the exact post right now, but I am pretty darn sure I never suggested what you say I did. I am pretty certain I said something like "if you could not do your job while or after becoming actually free, it would be worth it to quit and find a new one." Which is to say that I think becoming actually free is far more valuable than any particular job (which is to say that, maybe there really is a job like that, although none come to my mind). Also, that is not necessarily a desire...it may just be a choice.


Aman A.:
There is also a chance that while you are at it, you may also pick some weird beliefs of AF such as the universe being infinite and you as universe experiencing itself as a sensate human being.


As the actualism method is diametrically opposite to picking up weird beliefs (or any beliefs), I find it hard to see that this be much of a "chance" if one is applying the method correctly. By the way, what is a body if it is not the universe?

Trent

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/16/10 7:12 PM as a reply to Trent ..
Trent H.:

As the actualism method is diametrically opposite to picking up weird beliefs (or any beliefs), I find it hard to see that this be much of a "chance" if one is applying the method correctly. By the way, what is a body if it is not the universe?

Trent


If you think that the universe is infinite and that it is universe experiencing itself as a sensate human being, that would be a belief specific to AF period. If you have to philosophise about what a body is, then there is no need for me to reply.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/17/10 5:32 PM as a reply to Change A..
Aman A.:
tarin greco:


what about the actualism method suggests to you that its practice will lead to an increase in any tendency to ignore frustrations... and what about the condition of actual freedom suggests to you that there is any frustration to
ignore whatsoever?

well, good, but what about (your own experience of having practised) the actualism method suggests to you that its practice will lead to an increase in any tendency to ignore frustrations?

put more concisely.. why were you ignoring frustrations and calling that 'the actualism method'?



The instruction to consider feeling bad as silly may lead one to ignore frustrations.


do you mean to say that you misunderstood the instruction (to see how it is silly to feel bad) and ended up ignoring your frustrations instead?

*

Aman A.:

tarin greco:

i quit my job because i moved (not because i found my previous line of work dangerous due to my practice of the actualism method) and am now looking for a different job because my employment options are simply different where i now live (and not because i would find my previous line of work to be dangerous due to my present condition of being actually free).



I didn't mean that you considered your previous line of work dangerous. What I mean is that one may be tempted to quit ones job trying to be actually free (and that is a desire).


and so what if one is (tempted to quit one's job trying to be actually free)? likewise, so what if one quits one's job because of a desire?

*

Aman A.:

tarin greco:

well, ok, but you brought this matter up (of the possibly danger in being distracted by desiring the high of a pce while in one's workplace) because you wished to issue a warning to others about what you perceive to be the dangers of the actualism method. if you know that desiring the high of a pce will not bring one back to it (and hence cannot be said to be part of the actualism method), why did you warn others about the actualism method as if desiring the high of a pce were part of it?


In my books, desiring without the desire is still a desire.


but what you wrote was a warning to others about the danger of actualism based on the danger of 'the desire for the high of pce'. if you know, as you wrote[1], that desiring the high of a pce will not bring one back to it, and yet you consider 'desiring without the desire' to still be a desire, do you also consider attending to the immediate quality of one's experience, here and now[2], to be dangerous?


*

Aman A.:

tarin greco:


you see no clear cut distinction between what and what.. between the startle reflex and fear?

tarin


Yes, between the startle reflex and fear.


ok.. if you cannot see a clear cut distinction between the startle reflex and fear, and yet, you see that the startle reflex precedes fear[3], what is it exactly that you are seeing? we cannot proceed in discussing this sensibly unless you are forthright with your thoughts.

tarin

*

[1]
Aman A.:

I know that desiring the high of a PCE will not bring one back to it, it has to be 'desiring without the desire'.



[2]
Aman A.:
Aman A.:

I still think that the desire for the high of PCE state can make one do things which your normally would not.

tarin greco:

desiring the high of a pce will certainly not bring one back to it, that's for sure. the only reliable way i ever found to induce a pce was to attend to the immediate quality of what i was experiencing, there and then.


I know that desiring the high of a PCE will not bring one back to it, it has to be 'desiring without the desire'.


[3]
Aman A.:
I agree with you that startle reflex precedes fear.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/17/10 6:09 PM as a reply to Jeff Grove.
Jeff Grove:
Hi Tarin, thanks for the response I have been planning on posting an update.


you're welcome.

Jeff Grove:

The past couple of weeks my investigation has been around the following:

The Sweet Spot, How and Pure Intent

Digging deep observing the sweet spot and the Tantein I can find a point of balance or still point where there is very little or no movement (instinctual) and no energy rising or following attention.


here is where it pays to be keenly attentive. at the tan tien, you may notice a subtle swirl of energy in the background, as the very fabric of the feeling of being. it can be like an ocean of stillness, or a substance with an empty core. by gently moving my attention to the sweet spot below it, what i found is that the inhering (rather than moving) energy that rests at the tan tien can somehow activate in a manner that dissipates itself - on many occasions, the energy seemed to flow down from the tan tien, through the sweet spot, then 'out' the front of my body and out to the world beyond (drawing 'me' out along with it), at which point it (the energy/that feeling of being) would vanish entirely (and i would end up in the pce).

the subtle yet powerful energy that rests at one's tan tien is the very core of what one feels to be 'me'.


Jeff Grove:

When there is movement from this balance point, (disrupts PCE, attention wave) this movement can be for eg. sudden, quick, intensifying, decreasing, or slow. The energy can be subtle, thick, slow, fast but turbulently rises. This turbulent energy moves up below the Tantein, and I have been observing this flow between these 2 points (sweetspot and tantein and the movement). I can observe this movement/energy between the Sweet Spot and the Tantien and use it as an aid to find the bias point of movement using Pure Intent, finding the still point.


when your attention is down to the sweet spot, focused in pure intent, what is it that motivates 'you' (what is it that causes the energy) to move back up to the tan tien?

would 'you' not rather lose 'yourself' in the wonder of the world?

Jeff Grove:

Instead of How am I experiencing this moment I have been observing the movement of energy at this moment, How it is Fear, is Desire, is Aggression or is Nurture, fuels the feeling of being, energizes thoughts, creates mind states, is the discriminating self

Observing this with my eyes closed is easier for the very subtle movements. I have had an insight into what is meant by flesh and blood human being (exactly that), watching/feeling this turbulent energy it becomes more discernible


ok.. it is useful to know the nature(s) of the passions and their movements. once you know them well enough to make use of this knowledge in the field, however, it is more expedient to go ahead with engaging wholly in pure intent and losing yourself into naivete completely, as it is doing this which will give you the confidence to abandon yourself/to be abandoned entirely (that is, to self-immolate).

Jeff Grove:

I am managing to maintain PCEs in more active environments such as in the bustle of the inner city as opposed to amongst nature which is a huge step.


indeed, this is a huge step.. and yet, as the wonder of the inner city is just as apparent while in a pce as the wonder of nature is, it is also not entirely surprising, eh?

Jeff Grove:

I see that Desire, Fear and Nurture mainly shapes my reality. I am 44, Aggression is not as dominate, easy to trigger or the movement is less subtle (might be a testosterone thing) but I can remember when Aggression was behind nearly ever action, just passing another male in the street, all males have experienced it.

We are slaves to instinctual passion while there is this movement it doesn't matter how much you have cultivated non attachment, actions result.


yet, there are those who would rather be unattached to their condition of slavery than to actively work toward ending it. it is good to read that you are not one of them and that you are instead interested in extinguishing this condition completely.

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/17/10 11:29 PM as a reply to tarin greco.
tarin greco:

yet, there are those who would rather be unattached to their condition of slavery than to actively work toward ending it. it is good to read that you are not one of them and that you are instead interested in extinguishing this condition completely.

tarin


But can't non-attachment be a useful interim step to actual freedom?

This is important to me because I think actual freedom makes more sense than enlightenment, but I get better practical results using conventional spiritual practices such as objectifying everything that seems to constitute a 'me'. (I do this in daily life, not on the couch). This takes the emotional pain out of every situation and allows me to feel "happy and harmless". I have not had such good results with the actualism method. I don't know how to simply feel good because it's "sensible" to do so, or stop feeling bad because it's "silly" to do so.

What do you think, Tarin or Trent? Should I continue with a practice that is currently producing good AF-compatible results[1], or should I continue to grapple with the actualism method until I can get it working?

Best,
Neil

[1] Effortless and instant release from the 'good' and 'bad' feelings. Freedom to enjoy and appreciate.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/18/10 2:16 AM as a reply to Neil Hughes.
Neil Hughes:
tarin greco:

yet, there are those who would rather be unattached to their condition of slavery than to actively work toward ending it. it is good to read that you are not one of them and that you are instead interested in extinguishing this condition completely.

tarin


But can't non-attachment be a useful interim step to actual freedom?

This is important to me because I think actual freedom makes more sense than enlightenment, but I get better practical results using conventional spiritual practices such as objectifying everything that seems to constitute a 'me'. (I do this in daily life, not on the couch). This takes the emotional pain out of every situation and allows me to feel "happy and harmless". I have not had such good results with the actualism method. I don't know how to simply feel good because it's "sensible" to do so, or stop feeling bad because it's "silly" to do so.

What do you think, Tarin or Trent? Should I continue with a practice that is currently producing good AF-compatible results[1], or should I continue to grapple with the actualism method until I can get it working?


these are matters which you will have to decide about for yourself; the most anyone else can do, including those who have achieved the effects they intended, is to honestly and clearly report what methods have and have not delivered what results. my best advice is to be practical and pragmatic, and look to the concrete results you get from the practices in order to determine which ones to conduct.

i'll reply to your post in the 'af method' thread (regarding how 'i' am/is 'my feelings') later.

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/21/10 4:01 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Isn't PCE mode and Kenneth' 3rd Gear are the same?


BTW, Richard's writing style reminds me very much that's of Thorstein Veblen - both are enjoyable but feel impossible to understand in a very slippery way.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
7/21/10 5:04 PM as a reply to Yair Hilu.
Hi,

Yair Hilu:
Isn't PCE mode and Kenneth' 3rd Gear are the same?


The short answer is: no, they are not. If your wondering is tempered with reference to Kenneth's thoughts on the matter, I suggest that you disregard what he has said. Note that I attempted to log into KFD with the intent to kindly explain the misunderstandings I found in the communities' related discussion, but upon doing so, was banned by Kenneth before I could write and post a single reply (30 minutes after my first login) because "(he) does not think (the style of communication and the general theme of (my) orientation with regard to contemplative practice is) a good fit for the culture of (his) forum."

If there are specifics points you are wondering about, you are of course welcome to start a new thread about those.

Best,
Trent

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
8/1/10 8:04 AM as a reply to Trent ..
is an AF practicioner a sorta superproductive worker if s/he doesnt feel stress?
How does one in AF react to laziness or overworking? does s/he get lazy? how does s/he react when hungry?
Is it something that you can do for 24/7, or does it require a certain amount of energy and concentration,
like at times of being tired or confused or busy, its harder to do.

How does an AF practicioner deal with Dukkha or Shenpa or Discomfort. Are these the times that one is tempted to get lost in thought, run away, and lose their PCE? Are these the times one has to try harder then?

one reason i got into meditation was to eradicate my addiction.. food addiction, food cravings. believe it or not, but it was this goal that led me to attain stream entry fast and to sit through tortorous times. I am happy to be where I am now but as expected a part of me is disappointed because I still have not found an answer to my food cravings, or craving in general.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
8/6/10 4:00 PM as a reply to Dark Night Yogi.
Dark Night Yogi:
is an AF practicioner a sorta superproductive worker if s/he doesnt feel stress?


as an actually free person, not as an actualism practitioner (there is no such thing as an 'AF practitioner'), i have not yet found it necessary to be superproductive (as in productive beyond the means of my prior productivity). but as i do not feel stress, i do not doubt that i could be.


Dark Night Yogi:

How does one in AF react to laziness or overworking? does s/he get lazy?


could you please define 'lazy'?


Dark Night Yogi:

how does s/he react when hungry?


if, by hunger, you mean the appetitive desire for food (the urge for it), i do not experience that.

if, on the other hand, by hunger you simply knowing when is a good time to eat, i respond by looking for food and then eating it.


Dark Night Yogi:

Is it something that you can do for 24/7, or does it require a certain amount of energy and concentration,
like at times of being tired or confused or busy, its harder to do.


i do not find that it requires any amount of energy and concentration to maintain, as an actual freedom (as different from the practice which leads toward it) is a condition in which i live (rather than an activity i do).


Dark Night Yogi:

How does an AF practicioner deal with Dukkha or Shenpa or Discomfort. Are these the times that one is tempted to get lost in thought, run away, and lose their PCE? Are these the times one has to try harder then?


as an actualism practitioner, i dealt with dukkha and shenpa (i had to google that one to discover that they were virtually synonymous) by, in a nutshell, understanding that though these things were not my fault (nor anyone else's), the fact remained that they were entirely self-inflicted (by virtue of having been born to feel them), by understanding that it in my power (and in my interest) to change these habits, bit by bit, until i could see, through and through, that this condition of dukkha (suffering-dependent-upon-desire) and shenpa (feeling instinctually driven to hook/tighten/contract when things i didn't like occurred) was entirely unnecessary in every existing way, and by daring to abandon them entirely.

now, as an actually free person, i no longer have to deal with these things (they don't exist at all).

as for discomfort, there are many types of it, and one such type is physical pain. i am certainly capable of experiencing that.


Dark Night Yogi:

one reason i got into meditation was to eradicate my addiction.. food addiction, food cravings. believe it or not, but it was this goal that led me to attain stream entry fast and to sit through tortorous times. I am happy to be where I am now but as expected a part of me is disappointed because I still have not found an answer to my food cravings, or craving in general.


the successful application of actualism eliminates all craving, including all food cravings, entirely.

also eliminated, along the way, are whatever guilt or shame about craving may have been there.


tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/23/10 11:30 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
So Daniel, what's up on your practice front?

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/25/10 2:00 AM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Well, I'll try to summarize on the spur of the moment...

I am less concerned with any particular mode, though the distinctions have real relevance, and why I am not sure, but as the emotions relax to something more easy and direct more often, the drive to strive and attain has lessened in the same way, and thus, while I give a lot of attention to this moment, to emotions when they arise, to directness, to PCE's when they occur, which is pretty often, and to basic AF practice in general, there is less investment in it in some ways, as it seems at this point to be simply the same things again and again with less bite or drama or something, and so there seems to be some natural progression to something more relaxed and easy and natural. I might change my mind in my assessment of things tomorrow, but at this moment this is how it seems. I have not fully landed the thing yet, but my life is substantially improved in many ways so I can't complain.

How about you?

Daniel

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/25/10 2:52 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
I'm a fucking train wreck... my life seems utterly pointless and redundant... my only hopes I place in my practice, for some reason I really don't understand, since anything I say, or anything anyone tells me, or anything I do, only seems to engender grief.

It has just occurred to me, after reading your message, that I somehow thought of people in this forum, whom I don't even know, as helping friends... from the perspective I have in this very moment, I have no idea why, and that kind of seems stupid and naive.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/25/10 9:23 AM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:

It has just occurred to me, after reading your message, that I somehow thought of people in this forum, whom I don't even know, as helping friends... from the perspective I have in this very moment, I have no idea why, and that kind of seems stupid and naive.


what is the perspective that seems stupid and naive from?

tarin

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/25/10 12:57 PM as a reply to tarin greco.
dark, dark night

and it really takes some rational mind to bother answering, as from this point of view I feel like telling you to fuck off, as well as, for instance, wanting to beat someone into a pulp

really, I am assaulted by images or impressions of me really hurting someone physically and brutally

except it is so rationally clear that wouldn't be satisfying, and I suppose I have my insights into suffering to owe for that

it seems that this morning triggered a particularly violent side of the 2nd path dark night which has been unfolding this past week, and which hopefully will come to an end soon

I feel really vile (noting: vile, vile, hate, anger, grrrr, ...)

I will refrain from posting for a while, as I have bad experiences with posting in this condition

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/25/10 7:13 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
It's interesting that what we get angry with, get furious at, get bothered by the most are human beings. Other human beings (including one's own self a lot of the times) seem to be the foundation/the source of a lot of everything going wrong in our lives. Why the violent, bitter, all-powerful hatred/repulsion for something that is physically (in an ultimate sense) no different than a rock, a squirrel, the weather?

It's so bizarre.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/25/10 7:36 PM as a reply to rich s.
Come to think of it ... All the physical manifestations of life can cause me to become irrepressibly furious from time to time. Not just humans. I once, recently, got enraged, while making a delivery of groceries for work, at a 50 lb bag of flour that had torn apart just a bit causing it to become undeliverable thus costing me time, money, and wasted effort. In a rage, I threw the bag against the side of the trailer and proceeded to stomp and kick the living flour-shit out of it (Sunny in Godfather style) till flour was all over the place and all over me while saying to it,"You fucking piece of fragile fucking shit!"

Or the countless times I've gotten pissed at the computer, the car, the weather, my annoying cat.

I guess everything and anything has the potential to set off the beast. By far though, humans seem to set off the beast the most frequently and the most intensely ... which is still bizarre.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/26/10 2:53 AM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Hey Bruno,

Sucks. I know how you feel. Hope you start feeling better soon.

I was kind of hoping 1st path meant we wouldn't need to feel that way anymore. Sigh.

If the dark night keeps on coming back, what's the point of the path in the first place?

I mean, I crossed the A&P by accident, and I can't decide if that was a blessing or a curse. It depends on the day.

A question that helps to sum up my current hope for the path might be:

Will I ever stop wishing I had taken the blue pill?

I mean, things aren't so bad, but sometimes I miss the naive, care-free person I left behind all those years ago. Of course, we're always changing, and I can't blame all my mistakes on "insight disease."

You mention that the path is the only part of your life you're falling back on right now, that the rest of your life sucks. Have you considered focusing more on conventional growth work? I spent a lot of time with self-help stuff (it takes time and humility to wade through the crap to find the skillful material) and some of it really helped me (temporarily, as I didn't have the discipline to stick with what I learned. I was also in "insight denial" at the time [wasn't addressing my very real need to attend to the profound unfolding of my spiritual awakening]).

Anyway, I've found that sila work (in my mind anything having to do with growth in the conventional sense) is just as important if not more important on the path, and that some of the material in the self-development field can be useful, if only for its' wide-eyed optimism and sometimes surprisingly effective tips and tricks.

This probably isn't the right place for this post but I see you're suffering and thought I'd throw something out there.

Get well soon,

Adam

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/26/10 4:04 AM as a reply to Adam F..
Hi, Im new here. just been listening and reading a bit on the AF discussions etc. I listened to the podcast between Daniel and Tarin which was fascinating. I noticed that Richard was claiming that AF has never been discovered before.

This might be a rookie question, but how is the description of AF any different to actual realisation of the Buddhas noble truth: ie the end of suffering? How is AF any different from Ramana Maharshi or Nisargadatta or Adyashanti, when they describe their realisations? no-self, centrelessness, no suffering.

I'm very interested in a coherent response to the question. Do the people on this forum advocating AF really think that its different to what has been pointed to before?

Thankyou
Cao

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/26/10 10:29 AM as a reply to Adam F..
Hmm this is getting completely off topic, but I might add, the dark night was completely over today, after doing 7 straight hours of practice, which I concluded with a walk in the park with a very powerful PCE-like experience (as I seem to get into PCE territory in a gradient fashion, I can be close or far from it, rather than "in it" or "out of it"). The sensousnous, directness, clean-ness, innocence and wonder where completely off the charts. I just couldn't believe the way the fuckin' leaves rustled on the ground, among many other things.

Adam one thing I find is that although I get dark night, it doesn't last as long as it used to, so it's more like a few days or a week rather than months.

As for more conventional remedies for my ailments, I would say that insight disease interferes very obviously with anything I try to do, by giving me poor concentration, general misery, and a very clear sense of what still needs to be done. I wanna get this over fast, so I can go on with the rest of my life, and then for sure I will learn all sorts of other things. I am also determined to putting as much investment into this thing as I possibly can, and I am counting on getting it done, one way or another, and whatever that means (arhatship/AF, don't care) before the end of the year, or next summer the latest. The one amazing thing about this dark night episode was the furious determination I was able to put together in order to work with it directly (I think I never noted the word "unpleasant" as often as during the last 7 hours).

Thank you for the encouraging replies. Once again I apologize for posting what I did after Daniel and Tarin (the "I feel like telling you to fuck off" part was completely inane, it had mostly to do with me feeling guilty about linking to your video chat) --- I should by now know better than to post anything in that condition. The mind plays a trick: it makes you believe that venting will make you feel better, or that what people might reply to you will make you feel better, and while that might be true in some occasions, I have found by repeated experimenting that it is simply not true for dark night-induced stuff: it seems the only thing that works is practice.

Take care,
Bruno

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/26/10 12:51 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Hey Bruno,

Glad to hear DN is over and done with.

Also glad to hear that I can at least look forward to less DN as I progress on the path.

Much respect for your determination to get this done and your willingness to put all your resources there. That 7 hours of practice was badass and inspiring. I need to step it up!

And a PCE experience sounds great. I had decided to put off actualism work until getting further along the path of insight, but it sounds like something I should check out.

It seems to complement a meditative path in that the work seems to take place while going about your everyday business. So I don't necessarily need to sacrifice cushion time to give it a go.

Of course, at some point I'd like to be a place where I am practicing insight all day, but I'm not there yet.

Anyway, rock on.

Adam

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/26/10 2:00 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
So is that another Path, Bruno?
Good work!

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/27/10 12:27 PM as a reply to cao cao cao.
cao cao cao:
Hi, Im new here. just been listening and reading a bit on the AF discussions etc. I listened to the podcast between Daniel and Tarin which was fascinating. I noticed that Richard was claiming that AF has never been discovered before.

This might be a rookie question, but how is the description of AF any different to actual realisation of the Buddhas noble truth: ie the end of suffering? How is AF any different from Ramana Maharshi or Nisargadatta or Adyashanti, when they describe their realisations? no-self, centrelessness, no suffering.

I'm very interested in a coherent response to the question. Do the people on this forum advocating AF really think that its different to what has been pointed to before?

Thankyou
Cao


Hello Cao,

Welcome to the DhO.

For the sake of brevity, I have included some points of the teachings from the individuals you mention for comparison. Generally speaking, however, to suggest that any mention of "no self or lack of suffering" makes all of these the same is like arguing that Democracy and Buddhism are the same because they both discourage lying and killing. There are some vital and important distinctions which I attempt to demonstrate below. Fuller discussions of guru-type figures can be found at the following page:

http://actualfreedom.com.au/library/topics/gurus.htm

***

From Adyashanti's website:

"Spiritual awakening is realizing what occupies the space called “me.” When you listen innocently, you’ll see that there really is something more here than a me."

Right at this moment there is something more here than me. There is this computer, the couch upon which I sit, a table, a bowl of half eaten strawberries, and some flip flops. Surrounding this space there are trees, streets, other dwellings, birds, cats, sleeping possums, and hidden raccoons, among an infinite number of creatures and objects. But other than that, there is no "something more," the implication here being that there is some spiritual unseen something more.

And, "Inside, there is something that is not creating nearly as much noise as the me."

Inside of me there is a heart, lungs, kidneys, intestines, spleen, etc. etc. And because I have just eaten, it is making some noise as the food makes its way through the intestines. I am not really sure if the noise of my stomach is more than the noise of typing on this keyboard, but both the noise of the stomach and the noise of my fingers on this keyboard are me, the only me that exists, which is this flesh and blood body.

And, "When this openness is present, you can recognize how it experiences your body."

Does it make you curious to know what "it" is experiencing your body? I am this body experiencing being alive right here, right now. In the actual world, one realizes that what one is is a flesh and blood body, that one is the universe experiencing itself as a sensate human being. One is not being probed by the universe. This is a vital distinction.

(http://www.adyashanti.org/index.php?file=writings_inner&writingid=34)

***

According to Wikipedia, Nisagadatta's teachings could be summed up in the following way:

"According to Sri Nisargadatta, our true nature is perpetually free peaceful awareness, in Hinduism referred to as Brahman. Awareness is the source of, but different from, the personal, individual consciousness, which is related to the body. The mind and memory are responsible for association with a particular body; awareness exists prior to both mind and memory. It is only the idea that we are the body that keeps us from living what he calls our "original essence", the True Self, in Hinduism referred to as Atman." (emphasis mine)

And a little further on in the article:

"For Nisargadatta, the Self is not one super-entity which knows independently, regardless of things; there is no such super-entity, no Creator with infinite intellect. God does not exist independently from creation. What does exist is the "total acting" (or functioning) of the Ultimate or Absolute Reality along the infinite varying forms in manifestation. This Absolute Reality is identical to the Self." (emphasis mine)

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nisargadatta_Maharaj)

When one becomes actually free, both the ego and the soul are removed, so that any metaphysical notions of existence are revealed to be delusional and illusory, to be altered states of consciousness. The notion of a soul (Atman) or an Absolute reality that "is" the self, which was here before one was born, and will be here after one dies, is contrary to the evidence freely available to anyone living in the actual world. In the models of the aforementioned individuals, suffering is proposed to be conquerable by transcending the body through an identification with one's "true self," which is always already in these models a spiritual concept. The notion that consciousness is what 'creates' matter, that "awareness exists prior to mind" is a spiritual notion that exists only in the human imagination, but not in the actual world. It cannot be demonstrated in actuality.


***

And, from Ramana Maharshi's website:

"Mind is a wonderful force inherent in the Self. That which arises in this body as 'I' is the mind. When the subtle mind emerges through the brain and the senses, the gross names and forms are cognized. When it remains in the Heart, names and forms disappear. If the mind remains in the Heart, the 'I' or the ego which is the source of all thoughts will go, and the Self, the Real, Eternal 'I' alone will shine. Where there is not the slightest trace of the ego, there is the Self." (emphasis mine)

In becoming actually free, both the ego and the soul (which here is called "the real," "the Eternal") are extirpated. The idea of putting one's "mind" in one's "heart," to concentrate one's feelings in the heart center might elucidate suffering, though in the context of actualism is not the ultimate goal.

And, "I have not said that a Guru is not necessary. But a Guru need not always be in human form. First a person thinks that he is an inferior and that there is a superior, all-knowing, all powerful God who controls his own and the world's destiny and worships him or does Bhakti. When he reaches a certain stage and becomes fit for enlightenment, the same God whom he was worshipping comes as Guru and leads him on. That Guru comes only to tell him that ‘God is within yourself. Dive within and realize.’ God, Guru and the Self are the same."

(http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/teachings.html)


There is no guru, no god, and no self. And especially there is no guru in "non human" form. This is not merely an academic distinction but a vital difference that should be contemplated, for the implications of maintaining a belief in god or guru are directly related to one's continued sense of self, and hence, one's continued suffering.

For a very approachable document which succinctly delineates actualism from the models you invoke above and many of the other similar spiritual teachings you do not specifically name, please see the following page:

http://actualfreedom.com.au/richard/articles/180degreesopposite.htm



s.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/28/10 8:08 AM as a reply to cao cao cao.
cao cao cao:
This might be a rookie question, but how is the description of AF any different to actual realisation of the Buddhas noble truth: ie the end of suffering? How is AF any different from Ramana Maharshi or Nisargadatta or Adyashanti, when they describe their realisations? no-self, centrelessness, no suffering.

I'm very interested in a coherent response to the question. Do the people on this forum advocating AF really think that its different to what has been pointed to before?

Try here, for an experienced take:

3rd Gear, The Direct Path, Eckhart Tolle, and the PCE

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
9/30/10 6:13 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Hey Bruno,

Have you tried the actualism method?

I find that it does wonders for the Dark Night, as you can basically cut through all the crap by simply seeing the absurdity of getting all emotional about this moment of being alive on this wondrous and fascinating planet. In my experience, the Dark Night then appears as just a soft sorta whispered fantasy in the background of actual experience. It's not like a dramatic "waking up from a nightmare" kind of thing, it's just that the illusion that is the Dark Night slips away ever so softly into oblivion leaving no trace of even relief or any emotional content, not furthering the cylce or anything... just leaving one in the perfection of the present moment. The entire "cycle" just disappears.

You mentioned to me that you want to be done with insight. It seems that the PCE is the immediate end of insight. It's not the end of the path of insight, but the end of the entire reality in which insight exists. It's quite wonderful, indeed.

Take care,

Daniel

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
10/1/10 3:24 AM as a reply to Daniel Johnson.
Dunno Daniel,

I have tried, and it is a welcome relief when I really need one, but I would like to get the energy body fixed before getting rid of it (which seems to be a consequence of AF). Although I see that AF seems to be an inevitable consequence of where this is heading, and I have come to terms with that; more precisely, the PCE-like experiences I've had completely convinced me I won't be worst off (so frekin' wonderful!). Still, I don't see insight practice as being at all separate, and I want to get that done before moving on.

Bruno

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
10/1/10 3:04 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Hey Bruno,

I dunno either. But, I do find it to be an interesting discussion.

To get the energy body (the affective self?) fixed before getting rid of it. Isn't that a little like saying I want to get my symptoms fixed before getting rid of the disease? To my understanding the "energy body" will be quite fixed indeed once it's gone.

I also have noticed a usefulness of insight practice in my life and hope to do another retreat soon at some point. So, I'm not trying to take a stance on it one way or the other, just really curious how you've come up with this logic.

Take care,

Daniel

by the way, wouldn't you know it but after I wrote that last thing above, the Dark Night came and haunted me again - like just to taunt me a little for maybe being a little arrogant. Doh! emoticon

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
10/6/10 2:10 AM as a reply to Daniel Johnson.
I don't know if you guys caught these yet, but Kenneth made some explanatory videos about what he calls 'the direct mode of perception' which is very PCE-esque

http://kennethfolkdharma.wetpaint.com/videos/album/181468/The+Direct+Path

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
10/6/10 1:42 PM as a reply to mico mico.
Mic Hoe:
cao cao cao:
This might be a rookie question, but how is the description of AF any different to actual realisation of the Buddhas noble truth: ie the end of suffering? How is AF any different from Ramana Maharshi or Nisargadatta or Adyashanti, when they describe their realisations? no-self, centrelessness, no suffering.

I'm very interested in a coherent response to the question. Do the people on this forum advocating AF really think that its different to what has been pointed to before?

Try here, for an experienced take:

3rd Gear, The Direct Path, Eckhart Tolle, and the PCE


as what kenneth folk has now an experienced take on is the stabilisation of the mode of experience he has dubbed 'direct perception' (which may or may not be the pce - it likely comes close, regardless), then what he may have an increasingly experienced take on is how the identity in residence can go into (or close to) abeyance, rather than how it can be extirpated. and as an actual freedom is the extinction of this identity entirely, then it can be most conclusively said that he does not have any experience to inform his take on what an actual freedom (AF) actually is. indeed, nothing that has been discussed at kfd in the past, nor is being discussed there at the moment, will even lead to an actual freedom[1].. and whether it leads toward the realisation of what will remains to be seen.

perhaps it would be helpful to have pointed out here that an actual freedom is not the same thing as being in a pce for a really long time. i considered writing an article on this topic some time ago and will likely get to it sooner or later.

tarin

[1] 'i' spent months in the same trap as i see happening over at kfd, and was roused out of it only by considering very seriously that what goes in and out of abeyance is an illusion. none of that identity (the wave, whether one filters it or *is* it)[2] has any existence here in the actual world.

[2] the identity (wave) is discussed in the article to which you linked.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
10/7/10 11:24 AM as a reply to tarin greco.
Hmm thanks Tarin yes, well, that the two things aren't the same should be made very clear. Although it also seems to me that the direct mode is or comes very close to the PCE.

However, I believe that the description that kenneth uses "being the wave" isn't being used in the sense that one "feels" that one "IS" the wave (unlike what is called at KFD "primordial awareness", where there is this sense of "ISness", as they describe it).

But I would really like to see (hear the result of) you and Kenneth talking about this direct mode versus PCE, to try and uncover if the phenomenological outcome is close enough to be called the same thing.

Even if it turns out that it is reasonable to say they are the same thing, it will be interesting to know if Kenneth's practice will end up in actual freedom. I don't think that Kenneth has this as a specific goal, at least not now, and I see how that can make all the difference; but I would like to know in more detail what you mean when you write: "indeed, nothing that [...] is being discussed [in KFD] at the moment, will even lead to an actual freedom;" since that seems like a very bold statement (I wonder why you are so certain).

And as for the differences between an actual freedom and PCE, I am really interested in reading what you would have to write about it emoticon (I just thought AF = locked into PCE = locked-on abeyance of identity)

Thanks as usual emoticon

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
10/11/10 10:30 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:
Hmm thanks Tarin yes, well, that the two things aren't the same should be made very clear. Although it also seems to me that the direct mode is or comes very close to the PCE.
However, I believe that the description that kenneth uses "being the wave" isn't being used in the sense that one "feels" that one "IS" the wave (unlike what is called at KFD "primordial awareness", where there is this sense of "ISness", as they describe it).

and yet, scare quotes aside, where there there is a sense of 'ISness', there is feeling.. and there is the wave.

from kenneth's article, '3rd Gear, The Direct Path, Eckhart Tolle, and the PCE':

'In the direct mode, however, you simply *are* the wave. No interference patterns are allowed. It turns out that interference patterns are part and parcel of what we normally think of as emotions, so emotional charge does not/cannot arise during the direct mode of experience. Without this emotional charge, there remains only a sense of simplicity and well-being. I see no reason to value one mode of experience over the other, although you cannot do both at the same time.'

the interference patterns he speaks of can only arise when (the illusion of) the wave has already arisen.. and the (illusion of the) wave arises only when one is being the wave - which is intuited (felt) to exist.


Bruno Loff:

But I would really like to see (hear the result of) you and Kenneth talking about this direct mode versus PCE, to try and uncover if the phenomenological outcome is close enough to be called the same thing.

i momentarily considered contributing to the discussion over at kfd for this purpose, and to see if any benefit would come from it, but decided not to for a few reasons:
1- it is a censored forum on a website that also serves as its founder's business front and i do not want my writing maimed by injudicious parties with vested interests (whether ideological or economical) to protect, nor do i have any wish to actively disrupt those interests.
2- the recent developments at kfd, spearheaded - or at least, given public licence - by kenneth's own recent developments[1], have been an interesting example of how quickly and unexpectedly (to a plurality of its members anyway) these sorts of changes can occur, and i am curious to see how they continue to play out on their own.


Bruno Loff:

Even if it turns out that it is reasonable to say they are the same thing, it will be interesting to know if Kenneth's practice will end up in actual freedom. I don't think that Kenneth has this as a specific goal, at least not now, and I see how that can make all the difference; but I would like to know in more detail what you mean when you write: "indeed, nothing that [...] is being discussed [in KFD] at the moment, will even lead to an actual freedom;" since that seems like a very bold statement (I wonder why you are so certain).

what i meant is that nothing that has been, or is being, discussed at kfd demonstrates that any participant in the conversation is aware of the nature of being and the role it plays in all this. as an actual freedom (a permanent freedom from this illusion and its disturbance) can only occur when being is abandoned in its entirety (to the extent that i, the wave - and not only its interferences - is completely abandoned), and as no one in those conversations has discussed - or otherwise demonstrated - that this is what they are aimed at doing, it follows then that nothing that has been discussed at kfd in the past, nor is being discussed there at the moment, will even lead to an actual freedom (and whether it leads toward the realisation of what will remains to be seen). do you now understand why i wrote the above?

further, kenneth's espousal of the practice of suspending judgement[2] demonstrates his adherence to a particular means which will go only so far but no further; in committing to such scepticism (in the classical sense), he trades rationality for ataraxy and so loses a vital tool for uncovering what it is that enables judgement (that is, discernment or knowledge) to cause disturbances.

a properly beneficial use of judgement's suspension would be in the suspension of emotional judgement. rather than rejecting outright what one sensibly knows, it is what one feels or wishes to be true or false (that is, what one believes) that ought be abandoned. of course, that one ought abandon one's beliefs will only seem sensible if one already has good reason to (for example, if one knows that it is both entirely advantageous and utterly safe to).. and this may not be clear without some investigation into what it is that one feels or wishes were true (that is, some investigation into what one believes). such investigation is only possible with one's faculty for thinking, reasoning, and discerning intact.. and so a suspension of that entire faculty misses the mark.

i understand that it can be difficult to discern between what one sensibly knows and what one feels is - or ought be - so (indeed, a sceptic may argue that such a distinction would itself be motivated by an emotional judgement), and technically speaking, there may well be no clear line drawn between the two for a feeling being (as one's very being *is* a feeling that one's existence is so). however, the endeavour to distinguish between fact and feeling is instrumental in bringing about freedom from this existence; insofar as such freedom is not yet a fact, it cannot be taken but as a feeling.. and so the faculty for this distinction is indispensible.


Bruno Loff:

And as for the differences between an actual freedom and PCE, I am really interested in reading what you would have to write about it emoticon (I just thought AF = locked into PCE = locked-on abeyance of identity)

the equation isn't quite that simple.. though being at a point where one can just live very, very close to the pce (an out-from-control virtual freedom, in actualist lingo) certainly helps.

i'll here reprint my response to the follwing question that a correspondent (who will remain anonymous) asked me in a private exchange:

'I'm guessing since you stopped experiencing emotional suffering of any sort (the modulating frequencies) as well as the very potential for emotional suffering (the carrier wave) you have constant and continuous awareness of both and therefore no wave riding of both emotional suffering and potential for emotional suffering?'

no, what i have is a constant and continuous awareness of is a world where neither the modulating frequencies or the carrier wave exists. in a pce, people only see that the modulating frequencies are gone, and some are aware that there must be a carrier wave.. but no one sees what the carrier wave really is(n't).

when i read kfd, it's pretty clear to me that of those there who are even trying, no one really understands what i experience (actual freedom). everyone is, paradigmatically speaking, still relating on a level i've already gone extinct from.. at most, everyone is still working on their emotions. having gone through that door permanently, i can say that what is necessary to see is that the rod the lightning is supposedly being grounded in doesn't actually exist. the very thing people are grounding their emotions in doesn't really exist.. the entire circuit is an illusion. believing in the grounding may be at some point helpful, but ultimately - here and now - it is actually perpetuating the illusion. so if you want to put becoming completely free of the disturbance off for another day, then go ahead, ground away. just remember what i say for a day when you see, for yourself, that grounding is an endless road that will never be permanently satisfying. total freedom will not be found there.. only in the abandoning of the entire phenomenon.

and from that same discussion:

'on the 1st of february, i stopped experiencing emotional suffering of any sort.. as well as stopped experiencing the very potential for emotional suffering. to use some of kenneth's terminology[3], not only do proto-blobs not break off the body of wax, they do not arise from the body of wax, nor do they even rest in the body of wax... because for me, *there is no body of wax* (and so no proto-blobs). this is what an actual freedom is.'

tarin

[1] developments such as are typified in [url=http://kennethfolkdharma.wetpaint.com/thread/4249588/Kenneth's+Experiment]this thread.

[2] which espousal is typified in [url=http://kennethfolkdharma.wetpaint.com/thread/4258165/Let's+not+know]this thread.

[3] if this terminology resonates with you, you may wish to read what chuck kasmire and i wrote to each other in november/december 2008, beginning with my comments:

'hey, have you guys ever distinguished between emotions and (don't know what to call it really) 'surges' in the flow that don't translate into clear emotions but are a kind of on-going experience of feeling ('underneath', if you will)? when my mind chatter dies down the latter becomes more apparent. anyone resonate?' [11/26/08 5:43 AM as a reply to Chris Marti]

http://dharmaoverground.org/web/guest/discussion/-/message_boards/message/82186#_19_message_81988

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
10/12/10 11:03 AM as a reply to tarin greco.
Fresh Tarin Posts make my already always perfect day. ;-)

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
10/16/10 6:16 PM as a reply to tarin greco.
hmm yeah, dude, wow!... very clear when you make your point with Kenneth's charge-grounding metaphor or with Chuck's carrier wave / modulating frequencies metaphor. It is now astoundingly clear that AF is getting rid of the whole carrier wave (and thus any signal that could go through it).

But it isn't clear what exactly the direct mode practice actually causes (the fact that Kenneth uses the verb "to be" does not imply necessarily that the sense of being is present), nor how to describe the PCE according to these metaphors. When you write
Tarin:

in a pce, people only see that the modulating frequencies are gone, and some are aware that there must be a carrier wave.. but no one sees what the carrier wave really is(n't).

is the modulating frequency turned off temporarily or is the actual carrier wave itself turned off temporarily? Surely you yourself right now don't see what the carrier wave really is, since you don't have it at all, and apparently this isn't seen during a PCE or (we believe) during a direct mode. Then when does one see it exactly?

It also makes sense, after reading both this and your recommended reading, the way you interpret what Kenneth is writing, and what causes you to think that the practice won't lead to AF; and I understand why you wrote what you wrote, and I think it makes sense. I am also interested in seeing where this direct mode practice leads its practitioners.

---

With regards to the not knowing thing, I have no understanding or even a helpful metaphor to grasp what is meant. But it could very well just mean to "release the feeling that one knows," and not necessarily "desist from using judgement." I have had experiences where there is a clear "feeling that I know," which upon further investigation turned out to be just that, without any specific content to be called upon (this happens most often in dreaming), and I conjectured at the time of those posts that it could be that it is this specific sensation that is being released.

---

Tarin:

the entire circuit is an illusion.


What do you mean an illusion? The energy circuit has measurable biological and psychological effects... This circuit, if it isn't working properly, e.g. if it is blocked or tense or overexcited, will cause pain, angst, and will degrade or enhance my ability to understand what is happening. It might be imaterial, generated by some purely interior process, etc, but it is certainly there, doing measurable stuff.

Tarin:

believing in the grounding may be at some point helpful, but ultimately - here and now - it is actually perpetuating the illusion. so if you want to put becoming completely free of the disturbance off for another day, then go ahead, ground away. just remember what i say for a day when you see, for yourself, that grounding is an endless road that will never be permanently satisfying. total freedom will not be found there.. only in the abandoning of the entire phenomenon.


Satisfaction sounds great, and I am more-or-less convinced that AF is where this is going (since one can only delude oneself in "being god" or whatever before one knows about this third alternative). But I am concerned that if I don't take care of the energy body (clean up the blockages in the various channels and chakras) before, or on the way to AF, I will not have a chance afterwards --- because, as you mention, you experience no energy buildup whatsoever.

So far, I have recurrently witnessed that when an energy blockage dissipates, there is an increase in the quality of physiological and mental functioning (from digestion to sense of humour). It could be that whatever is experienced as energy blockages is just purely a fabrication, and that the better functioning which results from getting rid of these blocks just comes from stopping this fabrication. But it could also be that these blockages are actually correlated with physiological and mental problems, and that this correlation will cease at AF, but the actual problem will remain (i.e. "it's there but you don't feel it is a problem, and/or have no way to do something about it").

So I'd rather get the energy thing (at least somewhat) fixed before getting rid of it. (if you think that doesn't make even plausible sense, I'd be interested in knowing why)

---

Tarin, thank you for your answer, I'm really happy you took the time to write so carefully (links & everything emoticon).

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
11/3/10 6:28 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:
It is interesting the degree to which the correlations seem irrelevant to me in the face of the actual experiment itself, which has become all consuming in its seeming relevance as compared to talk of it and speculation about how these things might line up with anything at all.
....
Alright: Cycle Daniel looks at PCE Daniel with skepticism, great envy, occasionally paranoia, a mix of other emotions. PCE Daniel is very happy just being PCE Daniel and does its best to remain so.
...
Cycle Daniel, being able only to draw on memory and also yet being more keenly aware with each passing trip back to Cycle Mode of how much better PCE mode seems on retrospect, is generally quite keen to get back to PCE mode, as there is this amazing gravity to the PCE, it being exceedingly compelling at this point. However, from Cycle Mode, it seems either unattainable, preposterous, a distortion, a trap, the rantings of madmen, or that it must correlate with something that Cycle Daniel knows, such as Pureland Jhanas, or some other such attainment, all of which I can assert at this point are false so far as I can tell. ...
For instance, it kicked in for no apparent reason about half way through the shift I worked tonight and it still seems to be happening, much to my delight.
...
PCE Daniel does everything it can to try to figure out how to stay in PCE Mode, which is part of the problem, as this sort of trying done wrong causes Cycle Mode to recur, though as time passes and the temptations as I will call them arise, the thing is getting better and better at staying in PCE mode, though there is still instability.
...
In fact, were Cycle Daniel and the jhanas and ñanas and cycles and all that never to arise again, so much the better.
...


I just have to say, this post was very surprising to me! Obviously I don't know what it's like being an Arahat, but it seemed to be something like untying the knot of perception, complete non-clinging to any experience, etc. A very uplifting, free state, caused by being able to see reality as it is. But reading "Alright: Cycle Daniel looks at PCE Daniel with skepticism, great envy, occasionally paranoia, a mix of other emotions," and all the back and forth between the two Daniels.. it seems like there's still somewhere to go. It was actually interesting reading about "two Daniels" when I thought non-duality was completely felt and subconsciously understood as an Arahat. Just my 2c as an outside, non-path-attaining observer. I have no intention to offend anyone with my ill-informed views, and I'm sure this post says more about those than about anything else =P.


It's funny - I had a discussion about Buddhism with a friend of mine. I extolled the virtues of Enlightenment as best I knew back then (which wasn't that well - it still isn't, but it was worse then), and how you'd be free from emotion, etc. He said "but I like my emotions.." I said that stuff would still be there, just not affecting you - you'd be free to choose what to do. Which would in effect lower their significance, which he didn't want to accept.

Now I find myself reacting to AF the same way my friend reacted to Enlightenment. PCE sounds like a eradicate all emotion thing, which sounds scary. And, well, definitely sounds like a drug-induced state, especially with Daniel's description of trying to get back into it by all means possible, and especially since that comes from someone who has had so much experience dealing with desire. I'm not saying it is anything like a drug-induced state, and from the descriptions I've read it sounds like it's not, but that's why it sounds scary.

I'm not sure why I have this reaction to it when I didn't with Buddhist Enlightenment. I think what I used to think of Enlightenment was wiped out by reading MCTB to be replaced with that description of Arahatship, and now this description of AF sounds just like what I used to think Enlightenment is. Indeed it seems exactly like those limited emotional models discredited in MCTB.


Bruno Loff:
Is it surprising that the same person who came to this conclusion now has his own spiritual movement? Is it surprising that people gather around a guru who claims to finally "get it"?


This made me laugh cause the first thing I thought was "Umm... the Buddha? He started a pretty mm... world-changing movement, didn't he?" I bet all these things were also probably thought about the Buddha at the time. "How could no one have figured this out? It's been many many years that we humans have been around!" Note I'm not trying to compare Richard to Buddha, but I just found it funny.

Final thought: Buddhahood is claimed to be above Arahatship, when one has truly eliminated all the desires, etc. Maybe AF is Buddhahood? I wouldn't know where to look in the scriptures, but does anyone know references of where Buddhahood is described? I kind of doubt this, though, since it sounds like traditional Buddhist meditation does not lead to AF at all. Maybe Buddha became an Arahat, then immediately slipped into AF and didn't realize it? =P. Actually scratch that - he could definitely attain jhanas, which sounds like something that doesn't happen during in the PCE state.


Well some questions to Dan... would you say you still suffered as an Arahat? And now that's less so in PCE? Or is it something else? Why exactly is PCE so much more incredibly appealing than Cycle Daniel? And something random... you cited being worried that you won't be able to find the PCE state again. I was worried recently about not finding the 1st jhana state again. But I'm sure our versions of worrying are fundamentally different, with me identifying with it more. My question then is.. how do you worry? What part of you wants to be in PCE? Is it just the same part that always would, except 'you' can not identify with it, yet 'you' still go into it because the thought processes currently going on want it?

It sounds like you're getting into AF quite a bit... any chance you're gonna scrap MCTB and start advocating AF instead? =P.


Er also, purely out of intellectual curiosity, what are the effects of mind-altering substances while in PCE, if anyone has tried? I understand why there's no appeal at all, but I wonder how psychoactive chemicals would interact with the brain when it is in that altered state. Well, like.. why do AFers smoke if you are in such a state all the time? Seems unnecessary, and as someone said, the nicotine doesn't affect their pleasure centers at all.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 7:50 AM as a reply to Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem.
Hi folks, I see this is an old thread, but since I am new here and just read it I would like to ask a few questions, but first:

I have never heard of any of this PCE or AF before a few days ago when I started reading this thread. However, I immediately recognized Daniel's description of the PCE as my own experience. The only difference is some of the details on how "I get there".

I joined this site in order to have a better understanding of insight meditation after reading Daniel's book. To be honest,insight meditation seems like an indirect method. You see, I am more of a Mahamudra/Dzogchen kind of guy. And this brings me to my first question:

How is this different than Mahamudra or Dzogchen? What is the difference between PCE or AF with Rigpa? The luminous mind? The mind of clear light? etc....

I am not that studied on all the terminology so I ask this from an experiential point of view. I find the claims that actualism was discovered only recently very hard to believe. It seems to be the same thing expressed in modern words. This is nothing new, folks have always repackaged the same old truth in new packaging in order to sell it as their own. The possibility is that he discovered this on his own and didn't recognize the traditional descriptions of it due to not having an affinity to the traditional language. Not only does it seem intuitively wrong that this is something original, but also the fact that I have been having PCEs every day since last spring by following my own intuitive knowledge of where the truth is found in this moment in this experience.

Like Daniel, I 'trip' on sensations in this moment with my eyes open. It seems to be the direct way. You know the way a basketball sometimes rolls around the hoop before losing its momentum and falling through the hoop? That is how insight meditation vipassana seems to me, while my approach is just to directly dunk the basketball straight through the hoop. But I like to burn the candle from both ends, and Daniel's book inspired me to consider vipassana as the other end of the candle to burn.

How is AF different than enlightenment? Is it different? If it is different, is one better than the other?

I would like to point out that many people who expressed fear or skepticism regarding PCE sounds just like the misunderstandings the "average Mr. Jones" has about anything esoteric or strange, including and especially Buddhism. You speak of the PCE as "addictive" like a drug. That is because it is freedom, it is satisfaction, end of suffering, realization of no-self. How is that different than enlightenment? Couldn't the same be said for folks who spend thousands of dollars and a big portion of their lives and energy devoted to vipassana and going to retreats to just sit and try to attain some goal that promises the same liberation, end of suffering, and realization of no-self? Isn't this a motivation based on desire for some realization or happiness, or "high" of bliss, etc.?

I think that this is just a repackaging or rediscovery of traditional direct path teachings. That is my two cents.

Last spring when it happened the first time, this is what I was doing leading up to my PCE: I looked at this present moment and said "enlightenment is found in this present moment, so where is it?" And I looked, directly into my experience of the present moment. I looked around me at my surrounding environment in this present moment, and made sure that with every perception, "I" was mindful. There was a meeting or touching of intention with each perception, which became aperception. I gave up all striving for realization, because I understood that that is a subtle barrier to fully experiencing this present moment. I followed the instructions of Tilopa's song of mahamudra, and became utterly relaxed. A moment came when "being loose and natural" the yoke broke and there was no inner me. No self. I was "shallow". Just the environment which included my body. Thoughts seemed to pass by outside me, and I could see them coming and smile and turn my attention back to sensations and the thoughts would never reach me. The thoughts were seen to be just another sensation to enjoy without "knowing" their content.

I don't know what all this talk about no emotions is. I feel bliss and poignant love and compassion. The tenderest heart. My heart feels light as a feather, as steady as a candle flame in a still room, as bright as a lighthouse, as empty as space. There is no me, no space where I exist, no inner world, no psyche, nothing to worry about regarding my self, no need to identify with perceived problems or issues, etc. I am just a dream character in this dream, as are all of you. And vipassana is seen to be a story in the dream of the dream character trying to attain enlightenment and have understandings and realizations. (Well, to be fair, it seems like a valid path of investigating the nature of this dream with the intention of realizing that it is a dream.) There is "gnosis" or knowing. etc...How is this different than Rigpa or enlightenment? This is the whole reason I am on this site is to figure out if what the goal of vipassana is different than what I know of right now.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 8:30 AM as a reply to Dannon F.
Dannon, welcome to DhO!

Just as you found something profoundly worthwhile, valuable, and deep right within your own experience once you saw past what you thought you had been doing when you were experiencing consciously, so too is there much truth in this forum once you see past the wide range of claims and counter-claims, apparently conflicting nomenclature and techniques, and staggeringly heterogeneous levels of insight -- not just experiential, but also philosophical and historical. Even if your hunches are in some "absolute" sense correct, many of those to whom they would appear to pertain probably won't see things that particular way. So it goes. Be that as it may, it sounds like you are onto something really good, and I hope your explorations turn up what you need to take it further in whatever direction is beneficial for you (and, of course, to others as well).

As I said, welcome to DhO. emoticon

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 9:23 AM as a reply to Tarver .
hehe thank you for the warm welcome!


I don't believe anything is absolutely true! Besides the emptiness of emptiness. If anything I thought was absolutely correct everybody would have no choice but to see it my way.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 9:56 AM as a reply to Dannon F.
Hello, Dannon,

Just to point out a distinction:

You wrote:

A moment came when "being loose and natural" the yoke broke and there was no inner me. No self. I was "shallow". Just the environment which included my body.


And then:

I don't know what all this talk about no emotions is. I feel bliss and poignant love and compassion. The tenderest heart.


Do these two aspects present at the same time ("no inner me" and "bliss, love and compassion") in your experience? If so, how could it be possible to have "no inner me" and simultaneously perceiving reality with feelings (which are a subjective and interior contribution/interpretation)? In other words, do you think you are (intuitively) feeling reality or sensing reality (with senses only)?

Maybe, a couple of quotes from the AFT can shed light on the matter:

From the article 180 degrees opposite:

Actual freedom: The facts are the key to success and are to be sensately found in the actual.
Spiritual freedom: The truth is the key to success and is to be found in the feeling of beauty.

Actual freedom: A sensate-feeling experience (sensation only) empirically experienced as a body-mind (human consciousness).
Spiritual freedom: An affective-feeling experience (calenture only) imaginatively experienced as a bodiless Mind (Divine Consciousness).


Richard:

He (Krishnamurti) also saw the real world through the eyes of compassion and truth ... and again missed the actual. The actual is pristine, pure, unadulterated, unimpeachable, undefiled, virginal, unsullied, innocent, guileless ... in a word: Perfect. In the press of everyday business, normal people do not notice this ... to keep with the analogy of glasses it is as if everybody has grey-coloured glasses on. Somebody becomes enlightened and puts rose-coloured glasses on over the top of the grey-coloured one’s.

I have taken off the grey-coloured glasses ... and no longer need the rose-coloured glasses of beauty, truth, love and compassion to make reality palatable. Normal reality and mystical Reality have both vanished along with the last trace of identity.


Regards,

Felipe

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 11:24 AM as a reply to Felipe C..
Hi Felipe,

Felipe C.:
Hello, Dannon,

Just to point out a distinction:

You wrote:

A moment came when "being loose and natural" the yoke broke and there was no inner me. No self. I was "shallow". Just the environment which included my body.


And then:

I don't know what all this talk about no emotions is. I feel bliss and poignant love and compassion. The tenderest heart.


Do these two aspects present at the same time ("no inner me" and "bliss, love and compassion") in your experience? If so, how could it be possible to have "no inner me" and simultaneously perceiving reality with feelings (which are a subjective and interior contribution/interpretation)? In other words, do you think you are (intuitively) feeling reality or sensing reality (with senses only)?


The bliss and love and compassion are not localized. It isn't "within" this body. It is boundlessly everywhere with no center. It is the nature of what is. You could relate it to the shentong view that the "buddha nature" is empty of "other" but not empty of the limitless enlightened qualities of enlightenment. They aren't "my" subjective feelings. They are the bliss that is always there but the "self" blocks the way of. Suffering is a shadow the self casts. Bliss is what is left when the self evaporates.

felipe:
Maybe, a couple of quotes from the AFT can shed light on the matter:

From the article 180 degrees opposite:

Actual freedom: The facts are the key to success and are to be sensately found in the actual.
Spiritual freedom: The truth is the key to success and is to be found in the feeling of beauty.

Actual freedom: A sensate-feeling experience (sensation only) empirically experienced as a body-mind (human consciousness).
Spiritual freedom: An affective-feeling experience (calenture only) imaginatively experienced as a bodiless Mind (Divine Consciousness).


I don't know what 'affective-feeling' or 'calenture' means.

Richard:

He (Krishnamurti) also saw the real world through the eyes of compassion and truth ... and again missed the actual. The actual is pristine, pure, unadulterated, unimpeachable, undefiled, virginal, unsullied, innocent, guileless ... in a word: Perfect. In the press of everyday business, normal people do not notice this ... to keep with the analogy of glasses it is as if everybody has grey-coloured glasses on. Somebody becomes enlightened and puts rose-coloured glasses on over the top of the grey-coloured one’s.

I have taken off the grey-coloured glasses ... and no longer need the rose-coloured glasses of beauty, truth, love and compassion to make reality palatable. Normal reality and mystical Reality have both vanished along with the last trace of identity.


Regards,

Felipe

I find the view that Richard has of spirituality is a very limited understanding based on ignorance of the full spectrum of spiritual teachings out there and not representative of the richness found in even the collective teachings of Buddhism, for example. I don't think that the Buddha put rose colored glasses over grey glasses. His conclusion in the last quote does not differ from my understanding of truth or Buddhism. It is not that I cultivate beauty, truth, love, and compassion as a fabrication to make reality more palatable, but that is just how reality is. THIS is what I disagree with and is the whole misunderstanding that is the cause of the 180 degrees concept.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 11:24 AM as a reply to Dannon F.
Hey, Dannon,

Dannon F:

The bliss and love and compassion are not localized. It isn't "within" this body. It is boundlessly everywhere with no center. It is the nature of what is.


How could a feeling (bliss, love or compassion) be separated from the feeler who feels it? Are you saying that love is literally in the air?

Regards,

Felipe

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 11:37 AM as a reply to Felipe C..
From the Bahiya sutra:

In the seen, there is only the seen,
in the heard, there is only the heard,
in the sensed, there is only the sensed,
in the cognized, there is only the cognized.
Thus you should see that
indeed there is no thing here;
this, Bahiya, is how you should train yourself.
Since, Bahiya, there is for you
in the seen, only the seen,
in the heard, only the heard,
in the sensed, only the sensed,
in the cognized, only the cognized,
and you see that there is no thing here,
you will therefore see that
indeed there is no thing there.
As you see that there is no thing there,
you will see that
you are therefore located neither in the world of this,
nor in the world of that,
nor in any place
betwixt the two.
This alone is the end of suffering.”


So you see, there is no feeler to feel it. There is nobody to be separated or in union with it. It seems that folks have the idea that the absence of suffering is just nothingness, oblivion. But the cessation of suffering is bliss and peace, etc... Otherwise it even enlightenment would be unsatisfactory. Yes, the experience is like love is in the air, but it really is in emptiness. I have heard that love is not an emotion, but love is what is left when emotions are gone. In this sense it makes sense to say there are no emotions.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 11:57 AM as a reply to Dannon F.
There are a lot of debates related to this topic here in the DhO and the AFT website. I recommend you check them out.

For now, I would say that the key issue is that you describe what do you mean by love, compassion and bliss.

After having myself a super short period of tantric practices in the past, the differences between both experiences are clear to me now. Those meditative practices lead to a more blissful, luminous, grandiose, driven state. In contrast, in a couple of PCEs, I experienced reality sans any affective tone, as Richard says ("pristine, pure, unadulterated, unimpeachable, undefiled, virginal, unsullied, innocent, guileless ... in a word: perfect").

Would you say that love, compassion and bliss are synonymous with "pristine, pure, unadulterated, unimpeachable, undefiled, virginal, unsullied, innocent, guileless ... in a word: perfect"?

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 12:04 PM as a reply to Felipe C..
Yes! I would say that those are the same!

I see how it would be different than most Tantric practices, which is the path of transformation. I am seeing that it is the same or similar to Mahamudra or Dzogchen, which is more direct, just dealing with the sensations in the moment without trying to change them. It is the self that tries to change things. Without trying to change the present sensations, one can appreciate them as they are in actuality, and see reality for what it is this moment. This is dzogchen and mahamudra and it seems actualism as far as I can tell. But dzogchen goes ways further than this.

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 12:24 PM as a reply to Dannon F.
One last question:

How do you feel in the chest area when in those states?

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 12:58 PM as a reply to Felipe C..
Well, I told you how the heart feels. The chest area feels great, relaxed, insubstantial. In fact, the whole body feels good, but of note is the feeling in the head and the chest/heart/lungs and the connection between them. It starts with a clarity in vision, then the whole head feels as if it disappears. The chest feels filled with emptiness (haha), with a let go of all clinging. True generosity. The irises of the eyes feel bright. The body feels like an empty hologram. It seems that truth abides in the heart and shines out the eyes. There is a very tangible sensation that I don't know how to accurately express, and never heard anybody else express, which makes me wonder if I am the only one who feels it. It is like intention or feeling meeting and touching reality consciously. It is an intimate touching, like kissing each moment with the heart. How poetic lol.

What do you think, Felipe? Why do you ask? I don't mind, I enjoy talking about it.emoticon

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 1:20 PM as a reply to Dannon F.
I ask in order to find potential subtle differences, according also with what I experienced with certain Mahamudra practice in the past. I don't remember its name but I do remember that it was about a visualization and feeling of the emptiness and luminosity of the body and then the mind, and then to perceive all phenomena.

What I remember from those experiences and PCEs is that the first ones felt more driven, with sensations of being filled with light or bliss. It felt warmer inside, sometimes felt like if I was drunk with joy.

On the other hand, when in a PCE, there was no internal life, I didn't feel that I was filled with something like love or compassion, there was absolutely no psychic/psychological center: just the sensations of the actual world through my senses. I don't know how to put it but the body is just felt, without any flavors. Everything, incluiding my body, feels material, concrete, present, and not ethereal or sublime or transparent.

That's at least my experience, and I just wanted to compare notes again. I have no interested on debating these issues anymore, since this forum is already full of those emoticon

Good luck!

RE: AF and Insight: PCE Mode and Cycling Mode
Answer
1/14/13 10:47 PM as a reply to Felipe C..
That is cool. I wonder.... I can relate to both of your descriptions. Which one felt more complete? Or totally complete?
I can also relate to all the descriptions of the A&P, equanimity, etc... I have become very confused since coming to this site. I thought everything was so simple. And it is. It is just the maps that can become infinitely complicated, as Daniel says it seems like fractals. But just coming back to the still center of the wheel, everything is simple and all paths and cycles are just stories.