2nd Path knowledge of fear?

Dom Stone, modified 5 Years ago at 6/3/17 3:10 AM
Created 5 Years ago at 6/3/17 3:10 AM

2nd Path knowledge of fear?

Posts: 118 Join Date: 3/21/17 Recent Posts
Hi guys. So I believe I hit second path a week or so ago, the review period only lasting a week, my mind sure doesn't like to hang about. Things in life have had profound changes. Notably with regards to attenuated craving and aversion. Strangely, things kicked off very quickly this time around leading to some exquisite A&P phases from the very next session and perceptive upgrades in daily life. Realising the maps are pretty much useless now (Finding equanamity inside A&P was a pleasant surprise as was the strength of the Vipassana jhanas), I'm a little overwhelmed with all the extra content to note/become aware of, it feels like it might be easy to become lost in it all! My sense of self has taken a thrashing!

Yesterday's meditation was not as clear as normal. I've been able to sit for 2 hours easily and then feel that it's the body mind that wants to stop (a third party understanding of cause and effect), though yesterday lasted only an hour, and the day before.

Went to sleep last night, and woke up after a few minutes and something felt seriously wrong! Reality wasn't working. Anything I looked at, didn't exist. It was just colour, with the underlying but unrecognised sense of space. It was reminiscent of the quality of the dark night before my formal Vipassana meditation. I've a history of sleep disturbances, but this was very different, as the terror happened progressively after I woke and was non conceptual. 

I didn't know it could arise like this!

Strangely, after a series of similar (but less deep) progressively ​weak experiences before my formal meditation,  I've not had very strong A&P or dark nights since, which lead to confusion. It was just the equanamity and review/fruition phases that truely stood out.

Recent objects of contemplation have been:

Sources of craving and aversion
The supposed link between senses and causality between aggregates with any mental processes behind it
The spaces between experience

Has anyone got any advice. I believe that as I was tired, I was in a more suggestible state. I don't want to be averse to any state as they are obviously valuable objects of meditation, but it really did take me off guard, seriously scary stuff!!
thumbnail
Noah D, modified 5 Years ago at 6/3/17 10:52 AM
Created 5 Years ago at 6/3/17 10:52 AM

RE: 2nd Path knowledge of fear?

Posts: 1206 Join Date: 9/1/16 Recent Posts
Assuming all the above is true, I would say:

1- You're definitely still in review & just have to wait it out.  Expect 2 to 3 more weeks of this.  The nanas will gradually slow down to a halt until there are no fireworks 

2- Know that on average, 2nd path dukkha nanas (once they start) often hit harder than the first.

P.S.- I didn't do it this way, but I heard it can be easy/good to ride up the samatha/jhanic side of things in 2nd path to get to mature 4th Jhana and then start investigating.
Dom Stone, modified 5 Years ago at 6/4/17 5:25 AM
Created 5 Years ago at 6/4/17 5:25 AM

RE: 2nd Path knowledge of fear?

Posts: 118 Join Date: 3/21/17 Recent Posts
Thank you emoticon I think I just assumed review phase had ended because I didn't automatically end up in A&P one meditation. The last tip of yours sounds like a great idea as I tend to rise up to 2nd jhana and stop there, but it doesn't feel stable enough. I'll give it a go and put more focus on the samatha side of things.
thumbnail
Noah D, modified 5 Years ago at 6/4/17 11:47 AM
Created 5 Years ago at 6/4/17 11:47 AM

RE: 2nd Path knowledge of fear?

Posts: 1206 Join Date: 9/1/16 Recent Posts
Stay in 1st Jhana longer if things get unstable between 2 & 3.  It's like building a pyramid.
Dom Stone, modified 5 Years ago at 6/4/17 5:42 PM
Created 5 Years ago at 6/4/17 5:42 PM

RE: 2nd Path knowledge of fear?

Posts: 118 Join Date: 3/21/17 Recent Posts
Noah D:
Stay in 1st Jhana longer if things get unstable between 2 & 3.  It's like building a pyramid.


Thanks, I'll give it a shot!

Frustratingly I've slacked on my practice yesterday and got too involved in our island BBQ celebrations, monkey mind has given his greetings and mindfulness is at an all week low haha. I guess disconnecting from sublime states of being is a good opportunity for improving moral conduct in the future! It feels like I'm skipping between different levels of storytelling mode, which is frustrating. 
thumbnail
Noah D, modified 5 Years ago at 6/4/17 7:51 PM
Created 5 Years ago at 6/4/17 7:51 PM

RE: 2nd Path knowledge of fear?

Posts: 1206 Join Date: 9/1/16 Recent Posts
For the past 1.5 years my practice has been about how to balance indulgence in the island BBQ with the discipline required to practice.  With the help of my teacher Dhammarato, I've come to the conclusion that the entire path comes down to happiness in the moment.  I need to discipline myself to practice so that every day is an island BBQ.

Also, it has really helped me to be at family gathering, nightclubs, the workplace or nature, all with a commitment to be joyful, mindful & appropriately efficacious.
Dom Stone, modified 5 Years ago at 6/5/17 4:14 PM
Created 5 Years ago at 6/5/17 4:14 PM

RE: 2nd Path knowledge of fear?

Posts: 118 Join Date: 3/21/17 Recent Posts
Yes it's a fine balance, but one that seems to get easier and more refined as time passes. I think that some important insight was gained in this. I'm desiring to live a more noble life each week, and certain kammas are fruiting, without leading to more karmas, which is rewarding, though I have been dipping my toes into seeing how it is just cause and effect that is going on and I am just the awareness and volition behind the scene.

In the past, I've been interested in how cannabis has effected my meditation over time, possibly because it is one of those things that was difficult to give up, and it must be justified by the mind somehow! I hadn't smoked for a month, as I believe nowadays that the perceived benefits, being short-lived, were just not worth it.

Since my last path moment, I have had next to no desire for it at all, but set aside some time before the BBQ for a little 'test' regardless.

Interestingly, it took far longer for it to affect my sense of self, but once it did, it was clear how it ruined my mindfulness when reflected on. At no point through the whole experience did I feel that it was doing my good, and for once, the forced temporary increase in concentration was not welcome, as it was clearly solidifying layers of delusion over my otherwise clear awareness. At no point in the whole experience did I feel that this was something I enjoyed, except when playing, or socialising etc, any activity that reinforces the self.

I'm 98% sure I won't be doing it ever again (not even after a new 'attainment')

As for the experience where I woke in terror, I'm yet to have another opportunity to let go of this control, so for the meantime, I'm setting my intentions to note furiously when it happens, as, upon waking, the confusion​ makes the right actions hard to manifest. (Too busy thinking I'm having a life threatening seizure hehe). I get the impression that I should focus on building my concentration more while I let go of the desire to gain more insight for a little while, as it's probably one of my biggest selfing habits right now.