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Arising and Passing (A&P)

Some A&P events are more useful than others ?

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Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 2/19/17 3:51 PM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? J C 2/19/17 5:49 PM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 2/20/17 3:12 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Banned For waht? 2/20/17 6:58 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 2/20/17 3:54 PM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? J C 2/20/17 4:07 PM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? : ladyfrog : 2/20/17 6:10 PM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 2/20/17 6:51 PM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Banned For waht? 2/21/17 6:53 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 2/21/17 10:23 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Banned For waht? 2/21/17 11:12 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 2/26/17 6:15 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Banned For waht? 2/28/17 8:45 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 2/28/17 12:56 PM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 5/7/17 5:00 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 5/8/17 8:16 PM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Superkatze one 5/8/17 11:53 PM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Daniel M. Ingram 5/9/17 3:15 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 5/10/17 10:54 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Stick Man 5/12/17 4:52 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Daniel M. Ingram 5/12/17 5:02 AM
RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ? Banned For waht? 2/23/17 8:01 AM
So, Daniel lists various types of A&P experience. Among those is an ecstatic dissolving of self boundary, merger with greater reality.
  • Bliss and rapture
  • Energetic phenomena, aka Kundalini phenomena
  • Spontaneous movements
  • Strange breathing patterns
  • Strong concentration
  • Great posture (in those who are meditating)
  • Strong/lucid dreaming, and in fact this event may be crossed in dreams, which is nearly diagnostic of this stage
  • Seeing bright lights, particularly early jewel tone sparkles leading to
    more steady white lights (though not everyone sees these)
  • Strong sexual feelings, which may have a certain generic quality
  • The ability in those practicing to perceive fine vibratory phenomena,
    rapidly and nearly effortlessly perceive the impermanence of phenomena
    and dissect objects into their rapidly arising and passing component
    parts (hence the name).
  • A strong sense of faith in the path (assuming one thought of one's self as on a path when they encountered this)
  • A reduced need for sleep
  • Increased energy and excitement about life, plans, projects, spiritual practice, philosophy, and potentially wild grandiosity
  • On that front, it is not uncommon for people who have simply crossed
    the A&P to believe themselves to now be enlightened, when in fact
    they are not yet there
  • This stage can look an awful lot like a manic episode in some people

Is this particular A&P categoriclly different to others in that it can show the experiencer that they are not necessarily a singular, isolated self, plus a load of other possible philosophical/transpersonal/theological implications.
It seems this experience is so different to the other listed A&P types that to me it doesn't really fit in the greater set. It's an early stage mystical experience, but the others are mostly high arousal states yet still within the context of a boundaried self. Shouldn't there be a separate category for this ?

Can this happen without it being A&P ?

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/19/17 5:49 PM as a reply to Stick Man.
The A&P can definitely show the experiencer that they're not a self, and definitely has mystical and philosophical implications. The other bullet points are more like possible ways the A&P can manifest or possible minor side effects.

But it is true that the degree to which it feels mystical and transpersonal can vary.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/20/17 3:12 AM as a reply to J C.
J C:
The A&P can definitely show the experiencer that they're not a self, and definitely has mystical and philosophical implications. The other bullet points are more like possible ways the A&P can manifest or possible minor side effects.

But it is true that the degree to which it feels mystical and transpersonal can vary.

Yeah there's a lot of literature, often literally literature (emoticon), in which the mystical version of the A&P is experienced as a profound event.
That doesn't really happen so much for people who "just" get into a state of high arousal or see lights. Or am I wrong ? I can think of a few good examples of "finding god" or being touched by the divine in the A&P from literature and art, and it always seems to have more significance than just becoming very buzzed or having psychic phenomena.

If someone doesn't experience it in a transpersonal way at the A&P, at what stage of practice will they start to experience selfless or non-dual states (typically) ?

Does how the A&P is experienced make a difference to speed or type of progress later down the line ?

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/20/17 6:58 AM as a reply to Stick Man.
i would think of AP as something get relased and you feel like you are in a 7th heaven. After that you wil go directly to hell, what is DN.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/20/17 3:54 PM as a reply to Banned For waht?.
Well, when I question whether some types of A&P event are more useful than others, it's partly because I read things like this, and experimental study administering psilocybin to people to give them mystical experiences and see what positive effect it has on them -

http://www.maps.org/news-letters/v20n1/v20n1-22to25.pdf
David: Have you seen anything in your ses-sions that influenced your understanding of, or perspective on, death?

Roland: The hallmark feature of the mysti
cal experience, that we can now occasion with high probability, is this sense of the intercon-nectedness of all things – a sense of unity. That sense of unity is often accompanied by a sense of sacredness, a sense of openheartedness or love, and a noetic quality suggesting that this experience is more real than everyday waking consciousness. I believe that the experience of unity is of key importance to understanding the potential existential shifts that people can undergo after having these kinds of experiences. Within the domain of the psychology of religion, scholars have described two variations of this experience of unity – something called “introverted mystical experience” and another called “extroverted mystical experi-ence.” The extroverted version of this sense of unity was assessed by items in one of the spiritual questionnaires that we used, the Hood Mysticism Scale. I’ll read you a couple of items. One is, “An experience in which I felt that all things were alive.” Some of the others are: “An experience in which all things seem to be aware.” “Realized the oneness of myself with all things.” “An experience where all things seemed to be conscious.” “An experience where all things seemed to be unified into a single whole.” “An experience in which I felt nothing was really dead.”
So this feature of mystical experiences
points toward the nature of consciousness, and an intuition that consciousness is alive and pervades everything. From there, it is not a great stretch to contemplate the possibility of the continuity of consciousness – or, more traditionally, immortal soul. Such an experi-ence can break down a restrictive sense of being defined by your body, in a total mate-rialistic framework. So I think that it’s these subtle and not-so-subtle perceptual shifts that could be at the core to rearranging someone’s attitude about death.

David: Is this why you think that psychedelics can be helpful in assisting people with the dying process?   

Roland: It’s very common for people who
have profound mystical-type experiences to report very positive changes in attitudes about themselves, their lives, and their relationships with others. People often report shifts in a core sense of self. Positive changes in mood are common, along with shifts toward altruism – like being more sensitive to the needs of others, and feeling a greater need to be of service to others. It is not difficult to imagine that such attitudinal shifts flow directly from the sense of unity and other features of the mystical experience – a profound sense of the interconnectedness of all things packaged in a benevolent framework of a sense of sacred-ness, deep reverence, openhearted love and a noetic quality of truth. So it’s quite plausible that the primary mystical experience not only underlies changes in attitude toward death specifically, but also changes attitudes about self, life, and other people in a way that’s dramatically uplifting.

So in that study it was the more unitive type of A&P event that altered people's perception and fear of death. Would that happen with other types of A&P ? I wouldn't like to assume anything here, but is there contrary evidence ?

I suppose that, practically speaking, experiences further along the (theravada) path will also lead to this sort of psychological relief, but those aren't in the scope of the Griffiths study, he went for the energetic ecstasy experiences.

Nothing about going to hell is mentioned in the study, and there were follow up surveys. If that is really an ecstatic A&P event, of the same character as a meditative one, incited by psilocybin, then where is the following Dark Night ? And should buddhists warn that such experiments are unethical, and that follow up studies should be made to look out for the Dark Night after effects?

In another of his studies (depression and anxiety in patients with life-threatening cancer: A
randomized double-blind trial -
http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/0269881116675513) high dose psilocybin relieved depression for at least six months.
At 6-month follow-up, these changes were sustained, with about 80% of participants continuing to show clinically significant decreases in depressed mood and anxiety. Participants attributed improvements in attitudes about life/self, mood, relationships, and spirituality to the high-dose experience, with >80% endorsing moderately or greater increased well-being/life satisfaction. Community observer ratings showed corresponding changes. Mystical-type psilocybin experience on session day mediated the effect of psilocybin dose on therapeutic outcomes.

That doesn't sound like a post A&P dark night to me.

What if psilocybin gives an A&P that isn't followed by the negative states listed in the Theravada maps, wouldn't that render much of that path unneccesarily painful ?

Or is a drug experience like this only half an effort, and meaningless without contemplative practice ?

What do you think ?

[Sorry about edits I'm a bugger for that]

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/20/17 4:07 PM as a reply to Stick Man.
John:
If that is really an ecstatic A&P event, of the same character as a meditative one, incited by psilocybin, then where is the following Dark Night ? And should buddhists warn that such experiments are unethical, and that follow up studies should be made to look out for the Dark Night after effects?

What if psilocybin gives an A&P that isn't followed by the negative states listed in the Theravada maps, wouldn't that render much of that path unneccesarily painful ?

Or is a drug experience like this only half an effort, and meaningless without contemplative practice ?

What do you think ?

Some good questions.

Going through the dukkha nanas is not necessarily a painful or depressive episode - that's just one way that it manifests. There's this tendency on this website to assume that the DN is automatically bad, negative, painful, and depressing, but if you think of DN as corresponding to third jhana it's clear that that layer of mind doesn't necessarily need to be experienced that way.

Psilocybin seems to give people unitive experiences - and the combination of the drug and the experiences seems to reduce depression afterwards. These might or might not be A&P experiences. If they are, then whatever positive effect the psilocybin and/or the unitive experiences have may cause people to experience the DN in less disturbing ways, just as concentration can.

I think of psilocybin as one of many drugs that can help with depression, not as something that replaces the progress of insight. I don't remember where the quote comes from, but it's been said that "Psychedelics are like looking at the mountain with binoculars and thinking that you're there." This is exactly right - while psychedelics may help with depression, the experiences you have while on them seem real, but you're not really there.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/20/17 6:10 PM as a reply to J C.
I have nothing to add about drug experiences having had very few.  I've had a ton of AP experiences, lots of kundalini stuff.  But recently i had one that made me look up Krishnamurti's description of watching a guy building a road or something and feeling all was one.  Because it felt just like that.  Even when having it I felt no need to call it "real" or true.  But it was partially this total unity thing, and partially something about "knowing" or "seeing" the empty nature of absolutely everything and therefore it's unity but in a really tactile way.  Spent a good couple days in that space.

This one, while i felt it was totally this kind of A&P, energy movement (it was my spine opening in a movement over a couple days), somehow i think has changed me. Something did kind of rub off, and it was very specifically about relating both to other people (it took my reactivity down to an even lower place than where it was at) but also about looking at the state of the world.  Because with it came a feeling that while this is my corner of time to do my best with, with what's around me, it is connected to all the other times, and that knowledge somehow made it better.

So something from that seemed so far to kind of rub off, and had a kind of palpable and good effect that the other experiences i've had in that category haven't so much -they have felt more like part of an overall process, weird, trippy, hyper sexual, full of trances, energetically transformational - but once i got past them they didn't seem to effect me much.  Whatever it was i'm glad i had it, because whatever the relationship to "truth" and those perceptions may be, the result was a greater degree of freedom, so fine with me.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/20/17 6:51 PM as a reply to Stick Man.
-- I should note that Griffiths says some people in his studies had an adverse reaction, and he doesn't allow people with close relatives who have experienced psychosis to take part. So that may be the dark night there.
But, according to his study, for the most part, high dose psilocybin was way better than most other depression treatments in efficacy. But it has to be done in a good setting.

I'm familiar with the Krishnamurti experience story and I think the psilocybin experiments reproduced that for many people.
For me, there was a unitive experience which was orgasmic and sensual, everything seems part of one fullfilling life - and later there are emptier unities, non-ecstatic and free of emotional content either good or bad, but still kind of amazing. I wouldn't say they were particularly personally healing, more fundamental, like experience has bottomed out in some way.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/21/17 6:53 AM as a reply to Stick Man.
sorry im about to get nervous breakdown if i try more to answer to this post. Use common sense, you can have about 100+ answers. I quit.
(Its valuable for me to have that kind of sensation(where i am unable to continue), i study it hehe) 

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/21/17 10:23 AM as a reply to Banned For waht?.
Must Do:
sorry im about to get nervous breakdown if i try more to answer to this post. Use common sense, you can have about 100+ answers. I quit.
(Its valuable for me to have that kind of sensation(where i am unable to continue), i study it hehe) 

Sometimes my fingers just don't want to stop emoticon

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/21/17 11:12 AM as a reply to Stick Man.
offer warm tea to your quests to induce dopamine release. Im sceptical on all selfmade scientific researches.
If doctor puts on me all sorts of diagnostic equipments then i get fear and the data is wrong already.
if you have task at hand, when you start thinking then you have lost it, you are not anymore with the task but your own musings.

if you do a drug, you knowingly take that drug, then the effect is fake, it doesn't present you the reality what is outside of you. If you take it to get relief from craving, you get bad outcome, because craving is bad, it feels bad.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/23/17 8:01 AM as a reply to Stick Man.
The discussion of what is AP and DN is different to the discussions of mystical events. As mystical event shall be used as a phenomena but if you look at the typical mystical experience discussed the affecteion is there that they are on a same boat with the expereince so definite bias on whatever information comes. Whoever tells the stroy doesn't draw a clear line between reality and experience.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/26/17 6:15 AM as a reply to Banned For waht?.
Must Do:
offer warm tea to your quests to induce dopamine release.


This is a nice reminder thanks. Do you have any more advice on hospitality ?

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/28/17 8:45 AM as a reply to Stick Man.
nope

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
2/28/17 12:56 PM as a reply to Banned For waht?.
Must Do:
nope


Goddamit

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
5/7/17 5:00 AM as a reply to Stick Man.
So, aaaanyway, where is the post A&P dark night for the people in Roland Griffith's study ?

questions
  • Is the experience identical between psilocybin and meditation practice ?
  • Should passing the A&P induced by psilocybin begin the automatic cycling through dark night states - which is supposed to be a part of the theravadan path ?
  • Is the "dark night" a product of the contemplative lifestyle, or of an ascetic mind set, rather than something which will automatically follow after a mystical A&P experience.
  • ...Which dosing with psilocybin in the midst of an ordinary lifestyle obviates ?
  • If, post treatment, the people in the study take up meditation will they enter a "dark night" they wouldn't otherwise have entered ?
  • Would this be due to the practice, or the expectations of eventual self-loss placed upon the practice ?
  • Is the dark night of the contemplative due to trying to solve modern life problems via contemplation, which is not really appropriate, and those in the study approach life difficulties differently ?
  • Is the dark night of the contemplative due to having expectations of outcome of their practice which those in the study do not have ?
  • ..... ie., happiness just isn't good enough for buddhists, you have to permanently lose your self-perimeter too.
  • Will a follow up study reveal additional depression or unpleasant experience in the participants, which shows they are going through a dark night, after all ?

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
5/8/17 8:16 PM as a reply to Stick Man.
In short:

Johns Hopkins study
  • Psilocybin induced A&P event followed by long term relief from depression
Theravada Map Model
  • Meditation induced A&P event followed by long term emotional suffering

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
5/8/17 11:53 PM as a reply to Stick Man.
IMHO psilo is very similar to equanimity not A&P.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
5/9/17 3:15 AM as a reply to Stick Man.
Correlating what happens on entheogens and what happens through insight practice or other transformative experiences that arise based on other conditions is a long debate and not easy.

Clearly, some cross the A&P on enthogens, with it leading predictably to what comes next. However, what comes next varies radically between people, and the degree to which the Dark Night kicks peoples' asses vs the degree to which it provides valuable insight into letting go and renunciation of suffering is quite variable.

Clearly, some integrate enthogenic experiences better than others. I get reports from all across the spectrum.

Recent emails and a conversation from a nice guy who had some horrendous enthogenic experiences and was still putting his shattered mind, heart and life back together with difficulty some years later.

Contrast that with other recent reports from a close friend and mature, seasoned psychonaught who recently had amazing heart openings, clear and obvious positive personal transformations, and a sudden, new, profound, and enthusiastic sense of wanting to go on long, traditional, high-intensity vipassana meditaiton retreats after doing a variety of ultra-potent enthogens (toad, ayahuasca, mushrooms, peyote) in a short space of time in a great setting with some good guides and, by description and phenomology, is likely somewhere high up in Equanimity. However, as they said strongly afterwards: definitely not something most people should do if they are not ready for that sort of thing, and most likely aren't.

As we all know if we hang out in the world of meditaiton and spirit medicine (or whatever you want to call it), people are all over the map, so to speak.

Are all of these enthogenic experiences perfectly mappable to insight stages? The jury is still out. Clearly, there are often parallels. Many who take these things and know the insight stages or later learn about them feel strongly that they correlate well and sometimes perfectly. Others feel that they are undergoing transformations best mapped by other systems. I will bet that what ends up working best is some mix of the shamanic maps and the insight maps and phenomenology, drawing on the strengths of both to come up with something that works for this territory better than either on their own.

We also have to be flexible in our mapping and realize that some stages that are pleasant for some, such as the A&P, are frightening and unpleasant for others, and that the Dark Night stages, which are often difficult, for others involve a lot of skillful letting go of old unskillful patterns and attachments and a rapid progression to the nice end of Equanimity, and everything in between. We still don't have great predictors of this beyond handwaving, speculation, and vague statements like, "It must be karma!"

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
5/10/17 10:54 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
doing a variety of ultra-potent enthogens (toad, ayahuasca, mushrooms, peyote)

I would start by frying the onions till soft and then adding the garlic.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
5/12/17 4:52 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Thanks for the reply Dan. I'm wondering if the difference (between the outcomes of the psilocybin study and long term meditation) is the original aim.
For the drug study, the aim was relief of depression and fear of death. However for the contemplative life, the aim seems to be a mix of relief from depression and fear, but also approaching and experiencing depression and fear in a different, delocalised way.

Actually that helps me clarify the underlying questions I've always had about suffering and meditation (suffering in the commonly used sense - anger, fear, misery etc.)

Through meditation I aim to, or have acheived --

a) Lose some emotional suffering
b) Lose some suffering, and experience suffering in a new mindful way
c) Lose all emotional suffering
d) Lose the sense of the individual self that suffers, but not lose the suffering itself
e) Lose the sense of the individual self that suffers, and lose some emotional suffering
f) Lose the sense of the individual self that suffers, and experience suffering in a new mindful way
g) Lose the sense of the individual self that suffers, lose some emotional suffering, and experience suffering in a new mindful way.
h) Lose the sense of the individual self and lose all emotional suffering

I've seen various claims on these, and mostly the loftier teachers seem to be in (g). Shinzen Young would be one.
More extreme ones claim (h), but seem less credible.

RE: Some A&P events are more useful than others ?
Answer
5/12/17 5:02 AM as a reply to Stick Man.
i) Lose any sense of a localized, dualistic self; change key aspects of emotions, including the way they are perceived, something in their habitual reactivity and rise and fall times, as well as gain an automatic spaciousness around them and a much broader context for them, as well as lose the ability to contract into them they way it happened before; lose entirely the previously all-pervasive suffering related to the illusion of duality; radically increase the appreciation of the direct, immediate, intrinsic clarity of all experience; still retain that suffering that arises dependent on human birth and conditioned by being alive but perceive it in the context of the panoramic, integrated sense doors.