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Charlotte's Practice Log

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Charlotte's Practice Log
tmi
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5/12/18 4:54 AM
Current Practice: TMI stage 5,6 and 7 practices depending on the sit

As this is my first practice log I thought I would write a little bit about my meditation history.  After years of dabbling I attended a 10 day Goenka vipassana retreat in northern India,unfortunately I developed eye strain on day 9 due to crossing my closed eyes but stayed the course. The fact that the teacher's english was about as good as my hindi didn't help.  I am not sure what I got out of that but even though I never went back to that style of meditation I continued a very on and off relationship with it for a decade.  During that time I practiced mainly Insight based practices (as taught by Jack Kornfield ect) and some mahasi noting whilst reading lots about the subject including MCTB.  This lead to my passing the A&P for the first time and my practice lapsed. 

Sometime around 2016ish I bought TMI and it has been a bit of a game-changer for me.  I worked with it for about 6 months or so getting to around stage 5 then life got in the way with renovating and moving into a new house in a new town, and my practice lapsed again (notice a theme yet ;)).  Some sporadic work till early March of this year when I picked up TMI and started gradually working up the time and working my way up the stages where I think I am around the stage 6/7 on a good day.

11th May 2018

Earlier this week I was getting some strong piti and even touching on the first full body jhana and even touching second for about a minute but from today nothing. I have been working with full body breathing after a body scan and sitting for 40 minutes two or three times a day. I am beginning to suspect that my sudden increase in concentration skills combined with loads of piti mid sit (and noticeable amounts happening in normal life) means that this has been another A&P event, and now it's over. Time to get through the dukka nanas I guess. Ironically I have meditated more today than any day this week, chasing the pleasurable piti.


RE: Charlotte's Practice Log
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5/12/18 6:31 AM as a reply to Charlotte.
Cool! 

RE: Charlotte's Practice Log
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5/14/18 1:44 PM as a reply to Charlotte.
After last week being suffused with wild piti and blissful body sensations whilst meditating. This week has been far more mundane. I think I have been doing a little too much clinging and chasing what was, rather than being with what is.  Some mild piti at times, but I really need to learn to let go. 
Still doing the TMI stage 6 practice of the whole body with the breath and also trying out some of the stage 7 practices (but I have to really focus to eliminate distractions). 

Plodding along`
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5/25/18 12:59 PM as a reply to Charlotte.
The last couple of weeks have seen my practice go from euphoric to utterly mundane and slothful.  This is in part due to my detoxing from caffine.   I am 3 days caffine free with the previous 3 weaning myself down and the brain fug is starting to lift.  
I have also had some issues with noticing, and being bothered by tensions in my eyes, maybe from trying to "watch" the breath a bit too much.  I have been doing some experiments with meditating with my eyes open which has been partially successful, and helping with the dullness due to the lack of coffee.  Interestingly since the caffine detox I have noticed my sensory clairty to be stronger than before despite the dullness.   My sit lengths has slipped from 50 minutes twice a day to 30 once or twice and I have managed to get to a very calm place with the breath at the nose as focus after a body scan.

RE: Plodding along`
Answer
5/25/18 10:35 PM as a reply to Charlotte.
Hey Charlotte,

I too am taking a break from caffeine. I'm 10 days in, shooting for 30 days. My energy seemed to normalize around day 5 or 6 but there have been some occasional light headaches in the last few days. This afternoon, as an experiment (and because it was a cold rainy day) I had a little green tea. Contrasted against the extended time away from caffeine, I was able to clearly observe the buzz and found it unpleasant. I have to say I'm sleeping better and feel a little better overall without it. I'm thinking I may quit it all together. I'm curious to hear how it affects your practice.

Happy sitting!