RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 2/18/23 6:33 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 2/18/23 6:33 PM

Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I fell off practice for a while. Something derailed my on the cushion practice. I also have vowed to fix my life in 2023.

This involves basic stuff like keeping things tidy and being responsible. Meditating again and strategically taking psycheldics in the appropriate ways. My intention is to inhale a tiny amount of 5-meo-dmt, after I'm in the equanimity stage, and see what happens. I don't want to take big doses, because it's unwise for me at the moment. And I just plain don't want to. It makes more sense to just have the basic goal of practicing well. And later in my life I can open pandoras box if I want. 

My interest is rekindled by reading consiousness research on the subject. I'm also quite inspired by thinking about big picture, how there is life/death. Souls. An ocean of consiousness after death. A multiverese where the entire universe is you. Including all the God realms and suffering. I've long since integrated the terror of having consiousness being forced to exist in perpetuity and experience all the suffering an infinite number of times. And the terror of realizing there is only one "person" in the room. I am still a psychedelic virgin in a way, by only experiencing mostly the dark side of it, and a handful of random experiences. This is very promising A. I have integrated some of the unpleasant and B. The potential of experiencing the positive lay ahead. I will be reading both about negative and positive 5 meo experiences.

Despite quitting practice, I have found myself  experiencing many moments of mindfulness. Also synchronicity, things trying to get my life back on track.

I have a lot of work to do this year in the conventional sense. But I think my practice will benefit from being a little bit more laid back.

I've found a way to hack THC tolerance and increase it using CBN (canabinol). Its not psychoactive normally, but I have such sensitivity to THC, at first it actually got me quite altered. I took a mixture or CBN/THC which worked. Now I can take a small ammount THC and it's not overwhelming. These were the closest moments of formal mediation. And were very interesting and promising. Even after quitting like that it's really easy to experience non-self. I just shift my perspective a little and boom. Besides mediating high in bed, i would meditate walking around at work. It's sort of like "well, I guess I'll just experience no self right now" then something distracts me and pops me out, no problem. I just then instantly pop back in for a second. Since I wasn't formally mediating or had any goals it was just sort of experiencing it for experiences sake. I think that's a good approach going forward.

The message here is to be laid back. Later in life or in the year, if I fix those other issues in my life, I may be able to practice well with a more vigorous attitude, like I have in the past.

Im not gonna have a set formal time or meditiate every day. Some medition is better than none. I'll just try to experience the moment to the beat of my ability without trying to have a future oriented goal.

Just experience no-self. Experience all the little addictions that happen in the moment, which is a way to think of dukkha. <- This paragraph here. This is what I should journal about. Just practicing the basic techniques that I'm good at that help me experience the 3cs, as Daniel and the DhO say.

Idk, I guess thats all to say for now. I feel like o had more important stuff to say, added to the last paragraph. But I'll add it as I go, documenting my experiences practicing them.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 2/20/23 5:55 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 2/20/23 5:55 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
So from studying myself it seems I don't want to do sitting practice. And I don't have a nice space I would want to do walking practice in.

However at work I have noticed it can be easy some moments, days, hours to just rest in my bare experience at the moment.

I can see both how I still have maintained a shit load of benefits from practice, and also, conversely, how my lapse in practice has reduced other benefits and effects.

And I see how paradoxically, backing off of practice, let's me practice being in a more chilled, layed back attitude, which facilitate the latter, calming factors of awakening.

I see how sometimes My mind naturally wants to be all sped up, I can see the frame rates. And at other times how I feel a sort of peaceful sober contentment, that is like being on benzodiazapenes.

Further I can see how dealing with my problems in life, solve a lot more than just working on the 2nd and 3rd trainings, i.e. formal mediation skills. Because I was at a work site and I had to step out in tears. I work with a manipulative lady, who is Also very pleasant, which is extremely confusing for my personality. I'm soft and let people walk over me. I called my supervisor and started a paper trial. Working here 5 years that's the only time I had done that. It was a nightmare to do. And I felt conflicting parts of me telling me not to. Other parts telling me that I'm trapped if I don't. It was harrowing for a psychological trip. Another staff I talked to her about my problems with her. And a third staff, I got angry and hurt, and finally got her to understand me a bit more.

I have to deal with all the objects in the room on their terms first. Only then does the drunk state seem to appear.

I get into a flow state. Sometimes it comes in different flavors. Sometimes I also invoke god, and remeber how crazy the deeper reality is. I also just start to be peaceful, and do my job as best I can, without caring what others think of me. This not caring is a major piece to entering into a calm contemplative state at work.

I also did this thing where I try to match people's energy. Or feel them in the room near me. Well see where this goes this week.

I feel myself starting to get excited with expectations and I have to untrained myself to be so map and goal oriented.

I just have to deal with life on its terms each moment.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 3/2/23 10:56 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/2/23 10:22 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I cleaned my room in the proverbial Jordan Peterson sense. I deep cleaned the shit out of it. I can't tell you how much better I felt after. There is still the bathroom. My kitchen was also a mess. Like am I supposed to just walk around in equanimity when part of my mind is pissed I'm living in flith? I also slightly rearranged the room, which gives me a renewed sense of purpose and fights depression. I used to be a huge gamer but limit myself to a Nintnendo Switch since it's games suck (I'm being fascetious) and are for children. Yep. I bought me two new Metroid games for it. After listening to one of the Qualia Research dudes talk about quality fun, I realized it is some strange form of being slightly closer to god, as he said.

Something really forced me to try to loose weight in March. Carnivore, vegetable diet. Low starches. No seed oils or grains. I want to walk in there and impress my doctor with weight loss, but really with my ability to make shit happen. /end of diatribe.

Ok, this is another thing that is going to sound kind of "whats the big deal". I bought a touch screen laptop. I haven't had a properly functinong laptop in years. And I can do projects on it. And actually type! Like right now! Instead of all my other posts on the phone like a deranged cave man for cripes sakes...

I met this lady at work who kept smiling at me. Beauty is subjective, although I know some things are more objective. But this girl melted my heart and had the most beautiful face. If I could date a girl like that, it would make me feel so good about myself. I did think she wanted me to ask her out but my life is in no place to do that. And she cant see the fat under my clothes... I've never had a girlfriend before.

I hope this post paints a picture of some changes in my life. The initial thesis of this meditation log is to get my life togehter in 23'. And it is already 1/4th over. Unlike "gunning for stream entry", this forceful urgency is actually incredibly helpful and ass kicking, in this other realm of training in morality. 

To loop back, she is giving me the time off to help get my shit together. It's technically for insomnia/anxiety because "the man" needs a reason, legally, a reason I can't do my job 2 days a month. So now I get to call in for 2 days, for 5 months. I'm also intending to see a psychologist. A real, scary, classically trained one. Not the hippie kind's of seen. No, I won't tell them about meditation practice uncensored.

So far I mostly feel like I'm failing at the whole 23' project. I did notice some synchonicities happen to help me fight, attenuate or cease my addictions. WIthout getting too comlicated, I think some major pieces are - external world syncrhonicites, spirituality and harmony with the entire universe. - Being hard on myself and keep adding stuff to the list. Even if I fail, that sense of failure is helping me more than being coddled. - An internal relationship with the bigger spiritual picture. Bowing down to the sacred vastness, and trusting it. Or another side of it, the universe is like a giant loving mom. - My relationships with the people in my life, channeling that divine energy throuh me, and letting it inform these interactions with people. Also right thought. Not having mean psychopathic thoughts towards them, practicing love, not hate.

The Ohio train disaster really hit me hard. It made a lot of people really feel like we've lost our society. Regular people. Because if corporations have that much power, It means they are in control. I don't believe they are 100%, and that shit will fall appart for them hard. But, it won't be easy. It is possible to birth a golden age for the children in a generation or two. I've heard many people with more intersting perosnlaites or lives, such as Daniel, say that on one day they are hopeful, and the next they say "ah, fuck. we're all gonna die".

I want to be sane and calm, but when I work too much with this de facto corporate fascism, I start to feel dreadful. I think "how the fuck am I, a 31 year old, supposed to get my life together. To live a prosperous life, and start a family and buy a house in the country when Black Rock is deliberately fucking us out of it? Black Rock just being a specific example, on purpose. On top of that black budgets exist. And the last few years constant government push for "disclosure", which Greer said would happen. So corporations own the regular world, but who the fuck is the pimp who gets to decide where and what for, this fucked up anti gravity technology is used? What kind of insane world is this we live in? Everything is coming to a head. I can't even imagine what things will look like in 10 years.

I have my foot in at least two doors. The regular getting my shit together door, which is the room where the "real world" is, and another door that leads to everything coming to a head. The room most people either ignore or don't even know is there, or that they are in it!

Let's just wish me luck on the diet. Let's just start there.
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Chris M, modified 1 Year ago at 3/3/23 8:10 AM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/3/23 8:05 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 5289 Join Date: 1/26/13 Recent Posts
Am I wrong if I'm reading a lot of self-criticism into your last comment? Try to be kind to yourself. Give yourself a break. I also notice a lot of comparing and that's something to be aware of. We're all flawed beings, you know emoticon

I like your last sentence - one step, one thing, at a time!
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 3/7/23 12:32 AM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/7/23 12:32 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Oh yeah you do definitely sense self-criticism. If I say that "I'm a mess" or my life is a mess. It definitely has some validity, and I can react to it in various ways. It's become overwhelming latey, where I feel the mess. It feels so bad, and then I crumble!

I appreciate the reminder for self love. The last few days have been promising. And perhaps I've been  more self-loving.

And so far I've actually fixed my diet.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 3/7/23 1:20 AM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/7/23 1:20 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
My main focus right now should be "right-mind", "right-well being", "right-heart"". And an auxillary and equally important focus is the motivation project. I've been depressed by a strange paradox. That some part of me wants to live a good spiritual life, and practice every day, but another part of me does not want to. It is when I don't feel any motivation to meditate. Considering I've done retreats, and practiced religiously all most of 2021, and most of 2022, it kind of racks my brain: "How can I have wanted to meditate so much, but I can't get myself into gear right now?". And because I know how important it is, it's like some kind of conversation with god. Like I know the whole package is better off it I do this. I was put here to do this. And also I'm an animal-self, and a psycholgical, neurological being that has many different internal forces. It is a mystery. I allow this dichotomy of motivation-non-motivation to be a dance of god. The whole of existence is a mystery, why I am a soul and human is a mystery, and so is my apparent lack of motivation. So I can kind of bow down to the mystery. I can sort of chill out and just let it ride out. Sort of hacking synchonicity to lead me to having a far better meditation practice and life.

It's sort of working. For about 6ish weeks I was getting pretty depressed. I had a really good sit the other day. It was only 15 minutes but quality over quantity. As much as it pains me to say that. I want to be a "gung ho meditator". This is one of my little inner personalities. I literally feel sick in my body when I think about how short that sit was. But  the neat thing is, is that I can just see it as dukkha.

There are also the acute benefits of practice. If I do it more again, it will start to build and I will get better at it. This will help my life and job, and futher convince me to meditate more. It's also extremely restful in a way reading, gaming or videos are not. It's painful at times, but that pain helps me. I believe they call it "annealing" in recent consiousness research (QRI). I've been reading a lot from that website. The 90% of the math, science and computer stuff goes over my head, but it's been extremely helpful for everything I've described.

I remember back in 2015ish, I just thought it was some super fascinating blog by some hidden eccentric smart person. I was thrilled to read it, but now it's this giant nexus of research. This is the consiousness research I've always dreamed existed. It's actually been really grounding to hear or read about this stuff in such a context.

1. It is a huge validation for the culture of existing in a living, conscious universe. And 2. It grounds me in a sane, calming framework.

And there is a lot of basic wisdom I learn from there that sloughs off on me. I picked up to live my life as if I'm preparing for an upcoming psychedlic trip in two weeks. This refers back "right-heart". And in the spirit of other random wisdom, I learned that there are fields around people. And it's possible to positively vibe with them. Your physiology and biorhythoms synchronize with other people when you are near them and connecting with them.

One point of motivation is the equanimity state or ñana. It's really trippy and interesting. And it's a little healing pod. It's apparently neural annealing, which is sweet. Of all my skills or lacktherof I'm actually able to do this. It makes me really happy I have such a skill and can capitilize on it. As I should.

Another point is the 5-meo. When I'm in the right place, and in a state of equanimity, I will take a small dose. The fact I'm planning this is motivation enough to practice. It is amazing that it is described as being similar to jhana. If I can use it as a medititon aid that's awesome. I have been on medium to large doses of psychelics while much younger and in the dark night. I'm a little nervous with butterflies like a first date. I also tried 2 small doses of mushrooms last Fall, and it was very interesting. 

Another point is the consciousness research suggesting DMT entities are consiousness agents inside your field of awareness. It's actually a part of your own mind. A super advanced and intelligent part that also takes on a distinct personality. Again, this all feels very grounding. One of the only metaphysical insights I would bet on would be universal consciousness, which makes sense. There isn't proof for it yet, but there seems to be people who say that makes the most logical sense. But I would not have been able to bet on the actual existence of external DMT entities. To have some evidence that these things are part of your mind kind of makes me feel more grounded and sane, even though I've never taken smoked DMT.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 3/7/23 2:07 AM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/7/23 2:07 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Brief, meditation experience:

I was lying in bed, full attention. Relaxing and enjoying lying there. 
​​​​​​​
But the main thing I'm documenting is that I sort of became a toroid. 

I can't tell if it was just vision, but I suspect space itself seemed to be morphing, and a subtle physical sensations somewhere. I know they describe this later in equanimity, but this must have been earlier. This wasn't occuring to the entire field, it was just happening in my face, in my visual area, where it feels like the vision is. It took a certain ammount of relaxation and equanimity for it to happen, I think.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 3/13/23 3:36 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/13/23 3:36 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I guess I'll finally spill the beans, which I've threatened to before. The only reason is because I finally have acted on fixing it. I've been addicted to "kratom" since about 2015. I originally got into it out of curiosity and for recreation. Which it worked for. When I was moving to Colorado for college, I was a mess, socially terrified, and about to live with strangers, and meet a ton of poeple. I had discovered a small amount of kratom worked for social anxiety. I can tell you that it helped me as training wheels for dealing with social situations. I quit over the summer in 2016 when I moved in with my brother over the summer. My brother died in November 2016, god rest his soul. For his funeral I had quit, three days before. And I had used low dose naltrexone to expidite the withdrawals...

Since graduating college, I don't really need it anymore. There may have been an argument for it helping when I first started my job. But now this is getting rediculous. I have to take a halarious ammount of dry plant matter to get to sleep. But my tolerance has been so boosted I now have insomnia. I have know iboga could work. I only waited until now to actually pull the trigger. I will have 5 days off to do it. I'm going to take a medium dose and see what it does to my tolerance. I also have some nasal spray, that has helped heroin users quit, which is also made out of iboga. You use a small dose each day, which is below the level of perception, and within weeks it can reduce tolerance. So I can hit it with both methods. If the medium dose doesn't totally reset my toleranece, I will try the nasal spray. If there is still some room for reducing tolerance, I will hit it with another medium dose. I'm not looking for a flood dose, or for a massive trip. I'm ok with a long duration medium trip. I will try a small ammount first, and investigate any feelings of euphoria and or fear that crop up. Knowing how I'm wired, it could easily go either way. By investigate, I mean literally, I will be meditating.

Another thing I can tell you is my kratom addiction fucks with my ability to meditate and thus the progress of insight. Not only that, the insomnia makes meditation worse... It's not black and white. As the kratom helped with social anxiety, the negative feelings kratom create can make good meditaiton objects. I have definitely mediated on the physical pain the kratom/level of tolerance causes... It's like when people meditate on the pain of physically sitting. It's meditation on hard more. I have no doubt if I clear this problem up, I will get to stream entry. I was able to make so much progress in my 2021 stint, in this new phase of my life. And reflecting on the first hurdles before 2015, which was my longer first streak of meditation with two retreats.

There is a bit of irony and dark humor that my brother overdosed on heroin, and could have been saved by iboga. Looking back I'm kicking myself for not having the forsight to get that together for him. This go around I did not save my brother and we, collectively, lost a soul. If my brother could cold turkey quit fucking heroin, I can do it with kratom, especially with these tools I have.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 3/18/23 4:56 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/18/23 4:56 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Contemplative:

I feel quite "back", now that I'm paying attention to this stuff again somewhat regularly. I find myself sort of dissolving suffering with equanimity. Paying attention to the room, the person I'm working with, my body, mind and thoughts, etc. I'm still not sitting regularly. I need to do this for my well being in general. Other things, I'm learning to just have my open heart "hippie" attitude back and online most of the time. It's said there will be two kinds of "good vibe engineers: in the futrure (and present). The people who just naturally embody good vibes. And people who get it from a mystical perspective. This idea of simply having "good vibes" is tremendous help. For work, meditation, life and working within the realm of the people vs. the corporate/government thing that's trying to take over. I'm no longer regularly in that realm, occasionally checking in, but when I do I remember to just exhale, feel good vibes, and move it through my body. I feel way better on these multipule fronts.

I think it will really take off when I do get to finally hit hard equanimity this time around... It tends to be self-reinforcing. Knowing how good that state is for my mind and body, it motivates me to keep practicing. And it makes it easier to get there again, in the near term. It will also help to get my concentration up to get the ball rolling. 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 3/22/23 4:00 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 3/22/23 4:00 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I have been semiregularly sitting again. I've been having some experiences with n,n-dmt. Sometimes I will sit for an unknown time, and then I will inhale the dmt, while still sitting. At this point I try to do a slightly stronger dose, relatively speaking.

But what I seem to have a lot of success with is lying in bed, meditating for a bit, then taking small amounts of it. At this point it can go several ways. Usually I get body effects, piti. It really helps with more jhana type meditaiton. It is what weed is supposed to be. I instantly feel my body relax. Sometimes it can get pretty weird and trippy. I have no intention of going deep with it, but I can already tell where these go. I felt an alien feeling hostile intelligence, it was the strongest yet. But the other day I felt more generally that my consiousness, my body, and the room are alive, and on top of that, some other element is alive, extending beyond the physical. Keep in mind these are really weak doses, and they go away fast.

There isn't really any deep experiences here. It basically just enhances my already developed sense of mysticism. The whole point is to just breifly experience it to get aquainted with the effcts. Later I will be doing the same thing with 5-meo, which is famous for being a unique non-dual psychedelic.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 4/2/23 7:57 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 4/2/23 7:57 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I did it! I finally got to equanimity... I have a new phase of practice where I don't really time sits anymore. I can see there I have developed an unhealthy mindset, or perhaps one counter to practice. I have also continued to experiement with low dose psychedelics, in which my meditation practice is intertwined with, offering me some kind of ritual around which to meditate. Either formally, informally or whatever is appropriate at that moment, which is a definition of staying present. I just let the thing do what it naturally wants to do. I do do noting sometimes, or not. I notice the 3 Cs, or do more concentrationy type stuff.

I finally decided to try the 5-meo this weekend. My apparatis is a god send, because people easily "overdose" on this stuff. My target is just 1mg. If this stuff is apparently a nondual experience inducer, then it should be good for meditation. It definitely feels different than other psychedelics, like DMT or mushrooms, however, I havn't seen anything "nondual" yet. I think the idea here is just to practice equanimtiy before hand, then do it, and see what happens.

I did however manage to pull off an ok experience in psychedelic space at a slightly higher dose. It required getting to EQ first, it worked.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 4/9/23 10:30 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 4/9/23 10:30 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
- My practice is to emulate the EQ state. I'm not sure how far I got, but I try to dissolve my sense of self, and to notice thoughts and space inside my head as non-self, and impermanant. Not so much dukkha. However this last sit, I do indeed naturally focus on dukkha, especially toward the beggining. But it was mostly nice as the sit progressed. Sitting comfortably on buckwheat and gravely type stuff.
At that point I began hitting my fiveMEO vape. The vibrations it produces are very smooth, compared to DMT, which are very coarse and fast,           energizing, getting very weird in content, very fast with dose. 5meo, doesn't seem to have that content. It seems to be a good state for EQ mediation and   prayer, and god.

- I was taking tiny doses, and then decided to make a liquid vape pen, which I can titrate small doses. I'm never going to take more than 1-5mg. With this method I'm taking less than a mg, and can kind of build up, slightly, before the effects fade. It's very weak. It's essentially motivation to practice and study the mind. Any stronger in the pen, it may be possible to over shot the intended dose, which I'm mindful of.

For those of you reading don't worry, I'm playing it safe. I don't necessarily recommend other people do what I do. I'm as cautious about psychedelics as Daniel writes about the dangers of meditation. My life has gotten way better since I've started doing this. I'm not sure how much this is all helping meditation, but it's at least helping on a relative level. I can see the 5-meo helping meditation if I manage to take 1mg, while being in heavy EQ. It could be very healing for the mind/body.

Previously I've intergrated the reality that there is only one reality/being, i.e. god, and that this ride goes on forever. There have been moments lying in bed, short of breath, freaked out. But I realized that's just an animal reacting to the gravity of the situation. It's harder to contend with the reality that life in is infinite and eternal. An atheiest/materialist death, is a pleasant one. It's nirvanna, and it's as if nothing ever existed. But I know that can't be true, becasue there never should have been any consiousness if true... I have a point here. I've had a lingering phobia of the psychedelic experience. The 5-meo doesn't serve that function. It's the DMT. I keep titrating small-medium ammounts and just abiding in the strangeness, uncomfortability, helplessness, and sometimes a small amount of pleasure. Then if I want, and find it wise, I can take just one more hit to propell me slightly further in, if I'm feeling particularly brave. All the while knowing it will end in minutes. I find myself reentering similar psychedelic space, or even different space, but similar in intensity, and feeling freaked out, but remaining equanamous on some level, staying level headed.

A fun idea, is after being more attained meditation-wise, is taking the plung and doing a full dose of n,n-DMT, to see what it's like. I fanticize about having my life together in 10 years, and having hit at least SE. Life is so interesting and rich, it excites me that I may get to see it some day. For some reason I'm more cautious about a "full" dose of 5-meo even 10 years later. I feel like that's what will happen when I die anyway. So i'm only gonna do it if I think I will fell ready to die. Very heavy stuff to think about.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 4/14/23 9:08 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 4/14/23 9:08 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Now I confidently can say I did, and am continuing to reach EQ. I know for sure now. The first time I mentioned reaching there was combining methods, I was on a certain drug. But I got to EQ sober, multipule times. But the important thing seems to be this new phase in motivation and attitude. Genuinely not caring as much if I'm experiencing DN symptoms, not lusting for EQ, not wanting to get there. And not doubting my ability to get there when in the DN.

I've started timing sits with the indefinite timer, but I don't plan sits ahead of time. It seems this week I've been meditating at least every other day, in the sitting positon. And every day in bed before sleep.

There is also a new phase in consiousness in waking life. I'm able to just get into this or that stage, or attitude just walking around. Especially when I put my headphones in listneing to Shinzen. His voice is like a reminder to just abide in consiousness, flow, etc. Listeing long enough I get fatigued and tune out, like when you're driving and tune out. That's ok too. But the point is, I'm getting into these flow states again, like I used to. But less neuroticism and tension around getting them to happen. They can be like a bandaid for work stress. But now, I take it or leave it, and am greatful for when it's present.

Looking back the 5meo was a great idea. It's sort of linked with motivation. I know that it will be at the end of my sit if I want. It's an intersting experiment. I get to look forward to getting into really deep EQ, then trying it. So far I've only done it in lower EQ. Sometimes it clashes with meditation, sometimes it helps. But I feel like, either I got the dose wrong, or I failed to properly let go into the somatic feelings being produced, or mental effects. It's all a learning curve.

All that being said, I'm really starting to appreciate the meditation engine starting to fire back up to full strength. This is really fun. While the 5meo and it's prospects are fun and exciting, it's mostly about the EQ for me. I love being in EQ, and am greatful for the abilitiy to do that.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 4/14/23 9:10 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 4/14/23 9:10 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I guess "being in the flow", at work, or on break, driving, etc, means investigation, using MCTB terminology. Shizen flow means impermanance. 

My experience is impermanance, and loosing my sense of self. And dukkha sometimes.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 4/22/23 3:39 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 4/22/23 3:39 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I'm always finding helpful fixes, hacks or bandaids. After thinking about shinto (probably), video games like Micro$oft's "Ori" or anime with "spirits", like "Spirited Away", or more western mideaval ideas, I realized those beings walking around in cities and parks are spirits or souls.

Sometimes I'm able to keep calm and stay in a spontaneous social anxiety free state, just basking in the entire visual and somatic fields as I walk through the busy city. Other times I feel the beings there as gravity points sucking my attention and or causing me aversion.

If I remember that's just a soul inhabiting a realm, it helps. Obviously the happenings in consciousness is the observation of a soul directly, subjectively. This one.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 5/28/23 10:57 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 5/28/23 10:57 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I'm still going forward. I'm not meditating as much as I had used to. I am however developing good habits in my life, step by step. 

There is one good meditaiton development. I'm reading small portions of MCTB and also podcasts, to keep up interest. And I have discovered myself inpromptu sitting in nature or green areas in the city I jog in. I get kind of burnt out by meditation and the goal. And I get burnt out by being in my appartment. And I have really been using a lot of downtime from work for entertiainment purposes. Basically the jog activates the appartment, as it's no longer a burden when I return. And having have meditated prior, that is taken care of. It feels really balanced.

  • But the improvement is just sitting there noticing what is happening right now. Because I'm not focused on the goal, it sometimes allows for better quality sits. If I can't do it, I can't do it. This seems to make broader equanimity, at all levels of ñanas or mind states.
I sat there in pain in the middle of my jog, sleep deprived. And I just noticed what I noticed. Sometimes I have the 7 factors as the backbone of the scaffolding keeping me on track. But really it's just staying in the moment, noticing the 3cs as best as I can. If I can't then I'm just mindful of that, because mindfulness preceeds investigation in the 7 factors, and you're supposed to use it as a general guide of skills that build on each other that you can climb over to the next, the previous supporting the next one.

Whats interesting is it worked. I felt way way way better, and continued with my jog. I healed some of the sleep deprivation sensations.

Other than that I usually do it in bed. And I've been doing it at work ocassionally. My concentration is way lower that when it was in the past. But this does sort of function as reinorcement to keep going. Knowing concentration will build later. And knowing this will help me with work.

"Just keep going as much as you can". I'm not designing it this way or doing it on purpose. This is metaphorically having my life be in desire for deliverance, but after the desperation. Where you just give up.

And as a side note, I've been working with very small puffs of 5-meo-DMT. It works as advertised. When in small doses it's not this grand nondual experience. But it does make sensations feel smoother, similar to the  equanimity, ñana but in a forceful way. But what's advertised in small doses is psychologically feeling more connected to the environment or people. You want to make the environment better and help people. Like normally kids bug me. Im meditating with my eyes closed, having took a drag like 5 minutes ago, still feeling its effects. And I feel the family and the kids walk by to look at this awesome tree. I feel their energy and I feel the love in the family. Like the love I felt when I was a kid. It made me really apprecaite them and wish them well, like a very smooth and friendly silent prayer or wellwishes going back to them. The prayer itself felt like it was the sensations of the family I was experiencing that were giving me the good feelings. So the experience of the family was itself the prayer and vice versa. I'm pretty sure this is an experince of nondual on some form. In any case, it's very postive.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 6/4/23 8:54 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 6/4/23 8:54 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Synchronicty Journal and an apparent ESP phenomenon.

I was listening to an Aubrey Marcus podcast, very very dispassionately (not in the dharmic sense), and fairly tuned out. I was walking around a city. They were talking about rain and magical phenomenon. I hadn't realized until I was driving on the highway, all the way out of the city, that back during my walk, it started raining.

It was a sunny day with fat clouds. I was in the only spot that it rained, and it was a trickle, but they were FAT drops. The cloud was huge and moderately dark on the bottom. As I was walking around I even thought "hmm that looks like it might rain". 

The podcast wasn't just casually talking about rain and magic. It was overt and intnese. The guest is vetted by Aubrey. I think he's authentic. In any case, whereever this guy went for spiritual gatherings, it rained. Even Egypt. This is a very shit synopsis of the podcast. The main vibe I got is that the elements are alive, and consious, although much different than us. And there is a reason traditions make offerings and thanks to the elements, the earth, etc. These are very basic things. It's not a random god out of a pantheon, it's literally important to every civillization and species on this planet.

My personal take away on the way home was that, I can and should have more faith. In the 5 spirital faculties sense, and the training in morality sense. And the 3, errr, things? I'm not sure what they are called. The dharmakaya, as well as the heaveans and the physical reality. The three "kayas".

ESP

I was fanticising about joury duty, also very casually and dispassionately. Somehwere between an intense fantasy, and just regular background thinking. To be totally transparent I don't remember when I was thinking about it. It could literally be this week, or 8 weeks ago. But 1 to 6 weeks sounds about right.

Well guess what? I got a letter for it just now. What the fuck. I never got it in my life. I categorized it arbitratily, in some ways as "ESP", but it more just feels like being in the flow of life. In the pocket. Very similar to the moment realizing it had rained that day.

Mediation - Ill talk about this next post. It's going good. I feel a boon from the spiritual realm. And I feel it at work, in effect helping me. As distinct from the 3 cs. But Shinzen talks about a vertical path (to enlightenment), and a horizontal path (into the shamanic realm). But some people, like me, go at an angle. I feel it helping my life.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Year ago at 6/10/23 3:49 PM
Created 1 Year ago at 6/10/23 3:49 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I realized how I have turned  meditation into a fun machine, using 3 different techniques. 1, Trying to get to EQ, and experience the strangeness of it. 2, experincing intersting jhanic sensations, and 3, this very bad attitude of trying to get to SE.

I've since gotten away from these things in a positive way. What augments this is never timing sits, never caring how long I sit. Never caring about the posture, where I do it, ideal or shitty practice conditions.

To paraphrase Daniel, he described a progession of attitude. 1. "Oh my god, I'm gonna practice so I can get enlightend.". 2. "Ok, I'm going to now just sit here with what's happening.... so I can get enlightened!!!". 3, and finally just "I'm just going to sit here and experience what's happening (with the correct vipassana skillset, but sitting with the present nonetheless).

I noticed I'm actually happy to just sit with basic human sensations like I did before I crossed the A&P, and before I started to get traction post A&P. It's really nice just to notice my ass on the chair. Or notice, my feet. Or notice the room. Or how uncomfortable I feel in the room.

And because there's so much practice behind this, I notice the more complicated stuff too. Emotions, valence, craving/aversion/dullness, the three characteristics. Or not. I notice whatever is there and that is enough.

With how hard my life is it's a boon that I have this stuff in my life. I have a built in solution to everything I've been afraid of. Right here is a delicate balance of faith and wisdom. I do think I can cross SE, in my current state, my fucked up life,  being addicted to kratom.

I will actually point out one sit. Formal sit:

I was lying in bed in the middle of the day, feeling terrible. I sat with it in the most passive way, with no expectation for it to go away. Just basic attention to the sensations. And basic attention to the more complicated and subtle phenomena as my sit went on. This happening naturally, no pushing. Eventually it started to feel less unpleassant. Then finally I kept going and it began to distinctly feel like EQ... Which I found fascinating.

Because in the past I would work hard to get there. In this case, I just sat there, with whatever was happening. And I reached EQ, with way less effort or resolve. /end

The basic attitude can be applied to my random sits on benches, or walking around at work. I thought I had to fight really hard to get through the unpelasant body sensations I feel every day. Apparrently not. Having this new attitute, and having it day after day, marks a new phase of practice. The truely not giving a shit phase of practice. Stream entry? It will happen when it will happen.

I'm pretty sure I've been on SE's doorstep many times. If I can get there with a crazy mindset and a lot of effort, then I'm sure I can accomplish at least that and much more with this more mature seeming attitude.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 8 Months ago at 10/8/23 12:43 AM
Created 8 Months ago at 10/8/23 12:43 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
It's been 3 months. Overall I think life is developing well. I had hair loss and started taking a topical for that, which is working. It was traumatic. More traumatic than existential crisis from realizing reality is infinite and eternal and only one thing.

also I think i have diabetes, so i switched to a carnivore diet. I havnt been able to get to the doctor yet. I feel WAY better on a cellular level. And on an organ level I don't feel good. Sometimes things hurt and sometimes I'm tired.

I feel happy I'm being forced to est healthy the rest of my life.. I'm a little overweight and want to loose it. I've always looked weird without a shirt. This time I know I'm going to loose the excess weight because I'm forced to. I'm excited actually....

Anyway, two pretty big dramatic things in my life.

I got into angello dilullo. Sort of My 2nd teacher besides daniel.

This medical problem sort of fucked up practice and also working out. I noticed I'm not inclined towards practicing at work as I'm suffering through this. More so I'm just tending to survival.

But since I have more energy sitting around on the weekends, I actually got to EQ today.

Overall I think a carnivore diet is actually helping meditation.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 8 Months ago at 10/8/23 12:56 AM
Created 8 Months ago at 10/8/23 12:56 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
The way I get to EQ is way different now. Instead of strong determination and a harrowing journey through the DN, it's more boring seeming. More dull sometimes even.

To the point I'm surprised I even get to EQ that way.

I was sitting there, presumably already in EQ... but then i decided to lay down to let my legs reset... then i notived the "vibration" style was that of EQ....

but even more relevance is there is less desperation. As I got up to end the sit, I still felt connected to the eq stage for maybe an hour ...

There's less clinging to EQ and certainly less fear of the DN, than was my baseline years ago.

I felt earlier than perhaps I'm actually closer to a real shot at SE than ever....

The reason is because how chill i felt... ive learned all the ñanas. And moving through them is just more practice i need. Also reframing SE as just "Awakening".... I can be awake NOW any way...

It's all just building all the circuitry as daniel says. And practicing all the skills. Then one day it all just sort of clicks.

I think one of my biggest obstacles was "trying" to get to EQ. And then feeling so awkward and clingy in the ñ11.j3 phase... like reality and mind is so slippery and weird. And I'm trying to keep all the variables afloat and try to be aware of all the right shit to make stream entry pop...

But I realized I can just chill... when I HAPPEN to be there and when it HAPPENS to be more intense (jhanic?), then I just abide in it on its own accord to learn it's lessons on its own terms. It's like a mix of 4th VJ attention, with the weirdness of VJ 3.

Literally I use the phrase "dark night attentional phase" or some variation. Or just a mental recognition of the concept non verbally. And it will remind me to synchronize with that weird way or attention being out of phase. And suddenly I can focus and understand my mind and experience and practice becomes functioning correctly.

The same principal applies to ñ11.j3.

Eventually it really just becomes just being bare awareness in the moment. A healthy mix of all these practices. Bare awareness being helped by Angelo DiLullos work.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 8 Months ago at 10/9/23 3:46 AM
Created 8 Months ago at 10/9/23 3:43 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 2892 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
Try and follow Ingram's advice on noting/noticing 99% of the time , and rationalising the map of insight and pondering for 1% of the time. I like to think he talks about the whole day as I live my life and even when I sit. 

If pondering comes up UNPACK it! What are the body sensations associated with it? What is the feeling tone? What the mind image? What the thinking? What Realm is this? (Oh I desire SE to come! ... oh it's a Hungry Ghost Realm) oh! Unpack That! What is the body sensation associated with it? What is the feeling tone associated with it? What is the mind image associated with it? What is the mind state associated with it? And each aspect associated with it can become an object to also UNPACK! emoticon You see! No time for rationalising! No time you hear!!! emoticon Note/Notice instead so to Unpack and see your matter of fact experience. 

How fast? Dunno. That is stage dependent. Unpack that too! 

Btw if you see Angelo Dillulo kill Angelo Dillulo. If you see Daniel Ingram kill Daniel Ingram. If you see the Buddha kill the Buddha. emoticon of course by kill i mean UNPACK: body sensations , feeling tone, thinking, mind states, mind image ... associated with it. 

​​​​​​​Best wishes sending your way! emoticon 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 8 Months ago at 10/18/23 8:06 PM
Created 8 Months ago at 10/18/23 8:06 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Papa Che. I LAUGHED at killing Angelo and Daniel. I get what you're saying tho. And the advice about noting 99% mapping 1% is great. All of it is helpful 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 8 Months ago at 10/18/23 8:10 PM
Created 8 Months ago at 10/18/23 8:10 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Ever since I got health problems it torpedoed my athletic shit I do on the weekend, which is healthy, but I also do it to run from my problems. It sure had freed up a lot of time to meditate. Which is good. Whatever this problem is, is improving. The walking around EQ phase ended. But that's ok. 

I head great advice on a podcast about patterns of sensations in meditation, and life. All the way up to the patterns of sensation of the self...

Another great piece of advice wad learning how the jhanas help inform insight... like the equanimity from the 4th jhana is the same equanimity that gets you moving thru the DN...

And since I chanced into the 4th jhana, i get it. And I'm motivated to switch gears a bit. I'm starting to desire to hone my skills at concentration, aka centering 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 8 Months ago at 10/18/23 8:13 PM
Created 8 Months ago at 10/18/23 8:13 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I forgot to mention meditation time is going up. For some odd fuckin reason I like to meditate for hour(s) after work. 1 hr to 90m +

?????

And I allegedly whipped up another synthetic toad venomous pod to smoalk.... I like to do it when I get to eq. God damn hippie (me). Im saying that joking of course and in the most light hearted way but I know it doesn't come thru text.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 8 Months ago at 10/21/23 4:12 PM
Created 8 Months ago at 10/21/23 4:12 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I'm switching gears up a bit. The last two days I did kasina. LED. I put some candles up, just for ambiance and ritual. And I blindfold myself...

I have natural proclivity towards "seeing stuff". Even before my A&P I had visual snow. And I could get my mind to create light by using the mirror as a meditation object. But I had no idea what I was doing ...

But I haven't felt compelled to work with it directly... in the past I'd just get random visuals whenever. Later I found out I could synchronize the light to the body and pretend it's chi, and it makes am easier object.

So far I got good an noting. I got great at full body open awareness, on a good day. Those are my main techniques as far as I know.

Back when I tried kasina the first time it "unlocked" the center of my visual field, very very mildy. Within a day or two I noticed a thing in the center of my vision, more or less there any time i bothered to look.

My whole goal here is jusy to study the attentional field, especially the center. To see how it works. It is also an adjunct to moving thru the stages of insight. AND it helps tremendously with concentration.

In jist, its just a really interesting and fun sensory field to use to study the mind. It will help break up practice and get more milage out of it. Including better quality and maybe a little more quantity.

Kasina or otherwise I've noticed inherent motivation to sit increased tremendously. This is a good, positive trend 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 8 Months ago at 10/24/23 7:51 PM
Created 8 Months ago at 10/24/23 7:46 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I think what I've learned about my relationship with LED light practice is it seems to be a reminder to LOOK at the visual field. Thus far something like 99% of my cushion practice is somatic by default. When I'm still with my eyes closed its easy to not care much about sight.

So in a way vision practice is like training an entirely new sense field. Further yet. Is I'm better at looking at the whole field, not the center. And I already get crazy lights eyes closed... by default I don't like looking at the retinal burn image, I like just looking at the inner light... but that's the point. The LED is like free training wheels for the center... 

Via internal vision I have only seen the 3rd and 4th vipasana jhanas with any decent strength. So my goal along the way could be to stimulate the center of my visual field to see if I can get a dot/mandala thingy to appear.

Best Concentration Object

The hands... its absurdly easy to focus on them. They are absolutely brimming with static. In the past I changed into putting my hands in front of my face, eyes closed. And both feeling the static and seeing the light. Putting them in front of my face hacks it and makes it easy to merge them. Fetal position in bed....

We last night I did this on purpose... I thought why i didnt keep doing this sooner? It's like a free easy meditation object.

Breakthroughs

I noticed much more balance and ease at work... I also notice much more easily settling into medition when doing vipassana or zazen. Just bare awareness. I think I'm developing a little bit better baked in, deeper, equanimity.

Sometimes I hate talking about stream entry but I know I'm on the right course. 99% vipasanizing sensations. 99% 3 characteristics, 6 sense doors. This Is it. When I sit on the cushion I'm hitting the play button and just doing the experiment. 

Not even verbalizing it "3 charactetistics, 6 sense doors". No. I'm just sitting there on a cushion. But I'm not "just sitting there like an idiot" like the old fart monks warn against.

Really There are Two fronts I'm working on here... but plenty of overlap. And it's glorious. I'm pleased I have found a Concentration-only object I can use...
 
By default using the whole body as object works great for me...
 but the hands I can much more easily get to see what concentration experimenting is more like. There is also a bit of shizen in there... the scintilaing bubbles feelings. What shinsen calls impermanance.. plus with the light I can visualize chi. It's weird because it's the direct experience of feeling like a mysticsl or spiritual martial artist anime dude, dragon ball z maybe. Like it's literally possible subjectively. It's crazy... the seeing the vibrations visually part makes it way easier....

I don't have any structure or plan how much I do each of the techniques.... all I planre to do is practice well every day

● LED Kasina. And light behind eyes. Helps motivate me to practice longer and more variation.

● Hand vibrations, with or without visual vibrations. Helps build concentration. (Note to self, remember "centering")

● Noting, relentlessly. Later open awareness with more sporadic noted and gently teasing out sensate reality. Possibly self inquiry later in sit.

● Body as object/ open awareness. Body as anchor. Noting distractions.

●Just bare awareness and relaxation. Bare settling into the body mind. Imagine melting into bed at night. A nice soup of consciousness. 

Or any combination of the above or more. These are just what I seem to do lately.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 7 Months ago at 10/30/23 8:03 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 10/30/23 8:03 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Progress is not linear.

Part1. In March of 2021 I rebooted my practice. Within the first 2 weeks I had had new insights I've never had. Just from vipassana. But I also found TMI here, which parallel effects and discoveries while also super charging (3%) vipassana.

I practiced hard for a year. I can't remember I think I got to 400 hours of practice. I did a solo 2 day retreat. I fell off of practice for a few months in 2022.

In 2023 I found Angello Dillulo's work. Part 2.

It's sort of just an abiding non-duality. Strictly talking about awakening. 

I think so far there are two main developments ON cushion.

1. Practicing being in that nonconceptual state. It's just a field of colors and physical sensations. Part of the quality of this is thinking sort of "stops", or deadens, merely by just being part of the whole peaceful field.

This isn't a revelation, and it's something I could always access, at least a little. But the development here is it being more normal and more regular.

2. Number two is knowing how to use what technique when and where and mindfulness of the attention phase occurring at the moment.

It really helps to know how to focus my attention... its sort of like a light energy array. You can make the beam to all kinda of crazy things. So what is the mind body doing naturally at the moment? Ok, it's sort of vague and faded. So let my attention be that way. Or perhaps it's a complete chaotic jumbled mess. Perhaps just abide in it on its own terms... perhaps that doesn't work and I feel confused. Note/notice the confusion. So its still a chaotic jumbled mess. I'm still confused. And I'm just noticing confusion and feeling chaos but my attention still can't make sense of the chaos... ok. Perhaps do some concentration, or centering practice. Pick an object and just feel it. I can't go wrong with that.

Related to #2 is knowing when I'm practicing poorly or well. And knowing the overall motivational psychology of my practice the last few days or weeks. #2 is really just about meta-skills, about practice.

-----------------

Now outside of formal practice i have noticed two things. One of them is just being more equanimous and accepting of how I am being helpful to someone and my limitations. I basically hold my goal as the north star. And accept the moment as the proper way. It feels like I sort of relax into my body and the room. It's important to keep the room as frame here... some days I've done this multiple times, for like 3 days in a row. The litmus test here is my level of actual social anxiety, and level of self confidence.

The second thing is crazy. It's like #1 from above but in a social setting.... it's like letting my perceptual and locomotive apparatuses do what I imagine awakened perception and locomotion would do. It feels very real. One key thing is receptiveness, intimacy and openness (sensorially). The other key thing is spontaneity.... and the spontaneity goes for the passive part of perception too. It feels as is the other person is god, or a part of me........
 I honestly haven't spent much time writing about this or thinking about it. Its direct experience. 

When I do it, it feels as if my life is fulfilled..... I'm with the "other" and its profound and heart filling... it's amazing how much social meditation is sort of like a free lunch. Because it's an alive thinking breathing intelligent entity. That is you. It's a miracle this life is looking back at you. It's amazing.

I'm surprised how much I'm starting to sound like people Angelo DiLullo had had conversations with....to me it sounds a little hokey or corney until the moment I'm looking back at it (as my coworker talks to me).

I'm really having so much fun Journaling in this mediation log..

The above post I really brought attention to something I never would have otherwise (never so soon). The whole journal thing does help me get motivated. It keeps up fascination with meditation. On that note:

There is one final point I could shed light on... fasciantion can also become unwholesome. If you don't notice what it's trying to teach and what the sensation is made of. And more importantly notice the craving and aversion associated with it. Or distraction (ignorance) in some cases. 

As another commenter said "note(notice) 99% of the time. Map where you are 1%". He'll or maybe 0%. That would be 1 minutes every 1hr 40m...

I'm not that good but the lesson still holds water. As I echoed earlier, know how well or poorly my mediation quality is, in any given moment. This interweaves back with the nonduality thing I mentioned earlier. If my mind wants to "stop" and be peaceful and non conceptual, cool. That goes really well with the more left brain meta-skills of knowing what to do where. Sometimes I just do nothing.

I'm going to leave this entry here. While it really helps to get it all out, after too much it becomes more noise to signal...idk maybe i could write a private journal where I literally write anything and see what happens.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 7 Months ago at 11/24/23 9:43 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/24/23 9:26 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I've noticed more and more I can just dwell in the Anatta quality... I reflected on how different my experience is, compared to how it was 1 year ago during thanksgiving. On my drive 4 hours across the country, there is/was this feeling of freedom, of a lack of sense of self. The anatta quality has always been present in my practice to one degree or another. But it's been hard to keep up most of the time in daily life. But this was the main reflection on my drive out of state... that it's present a lot more of the time... It's still "work", as I'm not yet in the "stream of the dharma", but it's a lot easier work, it's easier to get there more often and more quickly... New Insight This is a weird one. So I noticed the sense of self diminished. I notice inside my head feels "empty"... It's pretty god damn self-evident... Anyway... I shifted the attention to the chest and it did not feel empty. It felt full... I'm not sure if I'm using english correctly or accurately here. And by no means do I understand emptiness totally yet... But I did, of course, notice the impermanance characteristic. The feeling of fullness in the chest was sort of like a warm feeling of love. Or ooey, gooeyness... I also extended this down into the belly. Butterflies. Anxiety? Not sure. But it sure felt like self... So here's the deal... I guess the way I experience anatta has to do with the "chakras". The space in the head is empty when I focus on it. It's like a giant empty void full of light, amidst a giant plop of physical sensations, that seems to be lacking the light, except within the hole in the head... So IDK. This section titled new insight is just my 2c, in english, about an experience I had. I'm guessing futher "paths" will elucidade this in real time, as I go down along the paths. Or maybe pre first path. IDK.

Practice Technique Continues to Unfold and Make More Sense

As I mentioned last post, all this stuff is sort of aligning. The last post I talked about how I can switch techniques. It's sort of a more active, meta explanation of how to do it.  But there is also this more passive aspect, that just automatically does helpful things in the moment. I.E. Just be aware, in a very ordinary type way. I thought I'd have more to say here, but currently it's hard to talk about. Something like this happened in a "sit" earlier today.

For instance I was physically exhausted from sleep deprivation but also had somewhat of the insight but and a very real need for practice. So I cuddled up with a night shade, ear plugs, and just lie there hugging a pillow... Normally I'd find it difficult to get what I need out of meditation, due to lack of extra bandwidth from less sleep. An feeling physically toxic. But here's the deal. I ended up getting into an equanimity state. Low EQ, with a small amount of equanimtiy feeling. But definitely the more cognitive aspect of having specific neutrality. A deep felt inner sense of equanimtiy. No push or pull, or avoiding sensations.

I was also feeling a seperate "tired". Which manifested as a general lack of motivation to practice, and especially and aversion to, and apparent inability, to apply effort.

I DID NOT know how to actually meditate correctly here or apply myself. But as I said above, I got to some form of low-eq, with the perceptual presence of specific neutrality, as well as a low level version of EQ. The low level I'm talking about was sort of just feeling mildly ok. The aformentioned insight bug from earlier was gone. And maybe 70% to 90% of the toxic feeling was gone! (from sleep deprivation)  The point is somehow the mind/body system intuitively figured out what to do to 'fix' the dukkha.

I think this is a key aspect for me to finish up the first cycle, and it perfectly compliments the meta-awareness of proper techniques in the moment. One of my biggest problems is thick dukkha, and what to do about it, and a seeming inability to do anything about it. Regular "dukkha-dukkha" as well as fundamental dukkha. But especially when both are present. Or even strong distraction and over stimulation from the environment. It's all slowly beggining to come together.

I'm also going to transfer to a less stressful position at work. It's still hard work. And important satistfying work. Same hours. But longer work days and more days off... So four, 10 hour, work days and 3 days off, weekly! Better friendly staff. And no B-personality disordered individuals. (Yes, I work with a psychopath)!
shargrol, modified 7 Months ago at 11/25/23 5:19 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/25/23 5:19 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 2536 Join Date: 2/8/16 Recent Posts
Sounds really good Alex. It does seem like it is coming together. Hope you keep practicing gently and consistently!

One thing that really helped me at this stage was playing with "how little energy/effort does it take for the mind to be mindful?"

(Definitely feel free to disregard!)
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 7 Months ago at 11/25/23 9:53 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/25/23 9:53 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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"feel free to disregard" In this case no. emoticon Absolutely not! What you said was very simple, and just a nice basic pointer.

"how little energy/effort does it take for the mind to be mindful?"

Because this statement right here... This single statement could sum up my current entire stage of pracice.

Whether on the cushion or just in life in general. It seems all the equations of life are balancing out, the pushings and pullings. Sometimes it seems like everything is riding on this, and I "have to get it "right" ". Then a renuciate type desire for deliverance feeling pops up, where I just give up. A more mature version of DfD, or perhaps it ReOb. IDK... In any case, It's a very real feeling of defeat. And it's happened so many times, I just have basic equanimity for it. It doesn't mean it feels good. I'm sure this is classic cycle type stuff. And realistically I don't even map it to the stages of insight. It's sort of just my basic life. Off the cushion. It feel so natural, how could I map it?

This is exactly related to "how little effort does it take to be mindful"... It takes a lot of pressure off, knowing I'm defeated. All I have to do is practice basic awareness... It's pretty simple. Wakefulness is awake. Other forms of practice come and go, but at anytime this simple practice of just being mindful is always available. And even though all the other techniques are defeated it sure is a load off, that I just feel my body. And see my consciousness light up. Even if it's dull. It's an experiement. It can be done under any conditions, and it should.

The pressure of not knowing what to do with this life, or how to do it. This is decades long stuff... Almost 13 years since the A&P. But even before that. Crazy childhood, and working all that stuff out. In fact after A&P, all my anxiety came rushing, flooding out of my subconscious. It's crazy to think there may actually be a conclusion to this on the horizion. Meaning, psychological well being. Psychological health. And just a general, and very deep level of peace.

This last statement helps show me there is simply just basic peace to be found. Yeah, I'm sure "awakening" may happen at some point. But this is an even simpler framework in my mind. Just basically being ok. Oh, and also learning how to be more moral. I didn't research it too much, but I DO know that being moral reduces the hindrances, and it makes one feel more peaceful. Yep. Just basic stuff like this.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 7 Months ago at 11/25/23 9:55 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/25/23 9:55 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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The one thing I think I can  do better is more of a daily practice... What's helping lately is not timing it. I'm not a very left brain person. So I'm working with not having a structure, and it seems to help. But a problem from this is not having formal sits daily. But a simple solution may be to scheule two "10 minute sits" daily... Where I don't use a timer. A timerless "10 minute" sit is an experiment. Because I know with supposed volition, I'm not goint to be able to stop the sit at 10 minutes. The problem with using a timer is I feel time pressure. Even if I note it, it doesn't feel natural. I'm just realizing that the helpful part of starting the meditation timer is the ritual of it. It makes it feel official. But this is an easy fix. All I need is some object. Like a talisman, or something. I pull the object and I set it down. And this begins my formal sit. I mean I guess that's what a ringing bowl is for... But I have this meditation dog. It's a stature of a monk meditating, but it has a domesticated dog's head. It's silly... I think I'll plop that thing down and it will signal the start of the sit. A little silly, but that may be even helpful. It's a paradox. It's an official meditation start button, but it also intrinsically makes me feel lighter and goofy. So it makes me feel serious and goofy? IDK. I guess I'll try it.

IDK. I know I'll get this to work. The whole meditation thing is studying the mind. And working with formal resoultions or rituals or daily practice is an extention of the study of the mind into the external work. It's really sort of external variables that help me be a better inner-consciousness scientist better.

IDK what will or wont work, but I know having a creative attitude works.
shargrol, modified 7 Months ago at 11/26/23 6:22 AM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/26/23 6:22 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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this all sounds good.

Yes, consistant daily practice is really the only thing that matters. At this stage of practice, it is sort of like swimming upstream. If you don't keep swimming upstream, you'll drift back downstream...and if you try swimming really fast to get to SE as fast as possible, then you'll just become exhausted and unable to swim upstream and you'll drift downstream. So it takes a humble kind of consistency, not being lazy and not being a hero, just simply sitting each day.

It's cool to use ritual and a little bit of woo-woo magic and have fun. Your playful attitude is exactly right! emoticon There is no rule that practice needs to be difficult or boring. Your statue reminded me of this: Just like you need to take a dog out for a walk each day so that it can get exercise and poop, you need to sit each day so that you can meditate a little past where you were yesterday and make gradual progress so that eventually you can SE/pop! emoticon 

As far as mapping goes, the "I need to get this right" is very desire for deliverance. This is when you see your mind developing strategies for life and practice, make plans, analyze the past and try to predict the future, and generally try to find some clever way to make progress. These thoughts can/could/should be noted: "planning thoughts" "manipulation thoughts" "strategy thoughts" "future thinking" "remembering the past" "gaming the meditation" "progress thoughts" etc. (Make up your own names for the categories of thought that happen for you.) Your attitude should be "aha mind, I see what you are doing! you are worried and you are doing anything except being mindful of this simple moment. No problem mind, you can keep worrying all you want, but I'm going to study what you are doing and make notes about the body sensations, emotions, and categories of thought that are occuring -- that way I will continue to develop momentary concentration, better understand my own mind, and use the desire for deliverance nana as fuel for making progress!"

The feeling of defeat, futility, impossible-ness, doom, failure, inadequacy is very reobservation. It's important to remember the body sensations, emotions, and categories of thought associated with reobservation because paradoxically IT IS A GOOD SIGN! emoticon What reobservation is trying to teach you is that all of your clever desire for deliverance planning is not the answer. The only thing that matters is momentary mindfulness. And reobservation gives you a test: can you feel defeat in your body and still keep sitting? It's just little sensations in the body... but are you going to turn them into a big emotional and intellectual problem? Reobservation is sort of like a gate keeper that only lets worthy meditators through the gate. You have to let your egotism die and become very simple. Then reobservation is less of a challenge. Eventually reobservation becomes more physical than thoughts/emotions and it just feels like a plane flying through turbulance. It's a very bizzare nana when fully experienced, kinda scary but kinda exhilarating too. emoticon

You don't want to waste the progress you have made so far, so treat meditation like anything else that's important for your life. Decide how much time you need and mark it on you calendar/planner and PROTECT THE TIME. Be smart and figure out a way to schedule your day for all the important things and be renunciate about the less important things. This is the kind of renunciation lay meditators need to have -- we have life obligations, but we also need to renounce distractions so that we have time to practice. You can make a lot of progress at home if you practice consistently.

It's just like lifting weights in a gym, if you don't do it regularly... well, you'll get exercise which is good, but you won't "build" strength because the body isn't being challenged frequently enough. To make progress in the gym you need frequent training with good recovery in between. Same thing with meditating. You need consistent daily practice and good recovery (life responsibilities done, as sober/drug-free as possible, not a lot of meaningless entertainment, and a good nights sleep) in between so that you are ready to sit the next day.

Hope this helps in some way, definitely take what is good and discard the rest. Straight ahead to SE! emoticon
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 7 Months ago at 11/26/23 7:17 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/26/23 7:16 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Those swimming and dog walking analogies help... Also, pointing out what thought processes are related to what DN specific stage, is both interesting and helpful.

I DO need to keep up a daily practice. I was about to not sit but I checked into the DhO and it reminded me to sit... Which I'm sharing in the next post.

"Straight ahead to SE!" LOL
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 7 Months ago at 11/26/23 7:28 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/26/23 7:28 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Sit: "22minutes"

I began by sitting down on the couch with one leg stuck out, in a more or less comfortable position... I just did basic wide open attention meditation. Eyes closed at first. It was easy enough to settle in. It was a pretty basic feeling into the body, and visual field, as well as ambient sounds and tenitus. This was a sit with basic mindfulness in mind, or nonduality in mind. I did noting here and there when it naturally was needed. Also sometimes I feel all sorts of different weird novel flavors of body sensation, and I was trying to peg it. I settled on natural materials describing it. Somewhere between sea coral (the mineral part), and cartelage. Don't ask me why I describe it like that. First I settled on styrofoam so I switched to a more natrual materials description because it seemed more intuitive. This part lasted 30 seconds, trying to describe it.

Mood wise I was depressed a little before the sit. As soon as I sat down I felt restless and anxious. But really my anchor is basic mindfulness. And at this point it's "anatta". I just settle in to anatta. By the end of this section of the sit I was feeling much better. And only in like 5 to 6 minutes.

I didn't sleep well last night and kept getting sleepy. Which was fine at first. I was just mindful of it. So later I just switched to eyes open. It's the same meditation as before but now I'm sitting in a room. I really made sure to see the room, and feel what it's like to be in a room... It was at this point I started to realize how much better I felt. I had about 8 minutes left on my timer. So I decide I'm going to take my meditation into an active meditation. I'm going to clean my room in as pure a basic nondual state as possible. It worked reasonably well. I've practiced this a ton informally at work, etc... The goal wasn't to perpetually be in the nondual seeming and/or anatta state. It was just to be mindful. So it is a victory every time I get into a long string of thoughts and wake up from it. I even noticed what the string was about and how it felt. It feels like space sort of gets sucked into the head or something. 

With practice thoughts, where I'm strategizing or thinking about practice, it doesn't feel the same as random thoughts. It has an emotional feeling of a strong will. And it doesn't feel as fucked up emerging from a practice thought, as it doesn't thinking about random inane things.

If I wasn't so sleepy, I would have finished the sit on the cushion. But it was productive in both phases of the sit. I labeled it 22 minutes, but that was what the timer was. It was probably 35 minutes. After cleaning the house I took the trash and recycling out which was a joy to do in this sort of mindfulness... I also tripped out stairing at a hung picture of my deceased brother. That part was interesting. It was sad for the first minute or so. But I realized how much it helps to look at it. I ought to stair at it every day to wring out the trauma.

Alright, that's it for today.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 7 Months ago at 11/27/23 7:01 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/27/23 7:01 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Sit, 22m. Reclined on Couch

Pre-Meditative Context: An insane, stress filled, and yet magical day. Detailed in next post.

Sit: The main technique was seeing non-self. The main technique that developed naturally was nondual vison practice. Also, just feeling the whole body, and vision, as well as sounds. It started off eyes closed. It was insanely hard to concentrate due to the day at hand. But given the general context of developmental progress, it was amazing how much quicker my mind is at coming back. "Waking up". It would go from spiralling and being embeded in it, to becoming aware that I'm spiraling (still embeded). To disembeding. And to a less chaotic somatic experience. It would go around like this. When I opened my eyes, I had already progessed on the spiraling. But it was also by default easier to notice thoughts. Feeling more spacious with my eyes open. The sort of later stage practice of "catching" thoughts. Being aware of them, immediately after they happen. Or instantaneously. I associate this type of practice with 4th vipassana jhana practice. But in this case, it was the fruits of my labor from being in that ñana. But with the benefit of now doing it regularly in any ñana. At one point I just felt so peaceful. As if I'm in the 4th vipassana ñana. 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 7 Months ago at 11/27/23 7:36 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/27/23 7:36 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Synchronicities

Basically the past few chapters have conspired to get me to a new place in life. In general, when I was in the prodromal ñanas, 1-3, going into my peak experience (A&P), and years of A&P and the Dark Night, I would have a lot of "magical" experiences. Many synchronicities... When the A&P event happened it felt like a giant synchonicity and I called it one. This is the set up for where I'm at now. Because now that I'm 10 years older (some of) the synchronicities feel a lot more "adult". Or a lot more active. As if it's conspiring to get me somehwere or helping me.

I don't want to get too much into it but it really feels like something in life is pushing me in this new direction. Something else is threatening it. I want to work at this other department. The supervisor there likes me, and wants me to work there. And one former supervisor and the 2nd in command manager support me and want me to work there. As well as my current supervisor. But like I said, something threatens it.

Another long story short, this department I work in is ran very poorly and it's sad to see. It used to run beatifully. What's sad is I'm the only long term employee who apparenly can still find love for the job. It's just sad. What a profound waste. That's why I want to jump ship. I work at blood mobiles currently. I'd like to trasnfer and collect platelets at a center. I was never ready for the weird and long hours, but I am now. I think I realize how the centers run how the mobiles used to run, pre 2020. The Red Cross cheaply had all their nurses bought out, or retire (99% of them). 

A boring rant about work.

Im pretty sure blood mobiles opperate relatively shittily nation wide. There is a real national blood shortage. Not the regular seasonal ones. I think the reason is because the Red Cross has such an insane turn over rate, and a staffing shortage, that donors no longer want to wait such excessive times and get stuck in their arm with a new staff who has no idea what they are doing. (I don't blame them anyway). I don't understand business but with the whole economic world order constantly shifting to a two tiered system, methinks Red Cross exces would like to emulate their for-profit counter parts in the corporate sector. Like, how the fuck were you guys able to pay all those nurses money, and now you're obsessed with cutting costs? The price of blood didn't drop. And you save all this money with techs. I don't understand how they couldn't just pay us a living wage, and it would actually keep staff, which would actually keep donors. I just don't understand how this works.

This is the first time I actually specifically spelled out where I work, but it's not that hard to deduce. This will get burried in posts anyway, and it's not like it matters anyway. I'm always a little shy about disclosing that.

In anycase, the donor centers have a better staff to donor ratio. To be fair, they are short staffed a bit too. But when they lack staff the cancel appointments, wich means the staff can actually do all the work safely. (They cancel WHOLE BLOOD appointments). This is the secret to why donor centers run better. I think donor center Directors don't have higher ups breahting down their necks because they still make platelet goal. Platelets are lucrative,  and make the biomedical branch many times more profits than whole blood. As far as the execs, an internet article facetiously retired to the Red Cross executive branch as the "AT&T Retirement Program". Anything beyond my worker bee stuff is speculating. But my supervisor spilled the beans, apparently the entire state of Michigan (Blood Mobiles), is 2.2 MILLION dollars, under budget. And they can't pay us? Or at the very fucking least buy us new equipment. Can you imagine how much more money they'd make if we operated smoothly? When I started we had 200 nurses/techs. Now we have THIRTY. For the entire southeastern Michigan. For fucks sakes.

Conclusion

If I am able to change departments it will be for real a cosmic hail mary... I cast the I Ching, originally, about a month ago and it told me about Enthusiam. And it said sucess if I keep my course...

After the confusion and uncertainty of today, I asked if it's still possible. It literally told me "You are the best person for this job."

O.o  <- Me

I normally don't like sharing synchonicites while stuff like this is still cooking. But I during my sit, I had tears of love I forgot to write about. "Sucess if you keep your course" It means get out of your way and let yourself be part of the cosmic dance. I know how synchronicites can look from the outside. So I try to temper it in the inside. But sometimes the synchonticites sure are "appauling" as Ram Dass once halariously said on tape.
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Bahiya Baby, modified 7 Months ago at 11/27/23 8:32 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 11/27/23 8:31 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Nice... I love the I ching !!

Best of luck with the job stuff
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 7 Months ago at 11/27/23 8:34 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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@bahiyababylol emoticon Thanks
shargrol, modified 6 Months ago at 11/28/23 5:33 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 11/28/23 5:33 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Another I Ching fan here. emoticon

Loved the use of the word prodromal for Nanas 1-3! Perfect.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 6 Months ago at 11/28/23 6:32 PM
Created 6 Months ago at 11/28/23 6:32 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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shargrol Another I Ching fan here. emoticon
LOL
Loved the use of the word prodromal for Nanas 1-3! Perfect.
LOL. It's from Daniel.. I had no idea what "prodromal" meant until I heard him refer to them, as that. I think it's great too.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 6 Months ago at 11/28/23 6:48 PM
Created 6 Months ago at 11/28/23 6:48 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Medi' Sesh (said facetiously). 22m

The session was way longer, but my timer was for 22 minutes. I continued to lay there 45 minutes to 50 minutes, but meditation got real sloppy and non existant at times.

The 22 minutes:

It started as similar chaos as yesterday. Except far less somatic. The chaos was seemingly more mental. There was a lot of jaw tension and chewing, and getting absorbed in the mind. I was aware I was doing this. I was aware why. It felt like a refuge. And I figured out how to stop it. It was weird when I did.

It felt very uncomfrortable to just give in to SUDDEN 100% mindfulness. It felt super weird. It was weird, the dukkha was palpabale. But the resistance was gone. So Resitance x pain = suffering... Well there was just pain. There was no more crazy absorbed-mind-refuge. And it disipated over like two or three minutes. It was really weird...

Also the visualizations were insane. First just crazy color and spave fluxes. But then literal images. A bunch of crazy stuff. As if I was tripping. It would be like tripping on datura, if datura didn't make you insane. Non-psychedelic images. Photo-realistic ones... /end

Reflecting:

I was reflecting that maybe the stage I'm going through right now makes concentration go up between medi' seshs...

Seriosuly. The amount of times off the cushie cush that I can abide in anatta is insane lately. The ol' neural circuitry seems to really be coming online. I've also stopped giving a turkey if I get stream entry. I still give a turkey, but I don't obsess about it. And I think it's really possible with the ammounts of times I give way to just dwelling in anatta. 

I think the craziest part of the session was the post mind noise phase. Phase 1 was mind noise. Phase 2 was stopping it and being in peaceful silence. Which was uncomfrotable. Phase 3 was REALLY uncomfortable. Phase 3 was making anatta basically temporally slam into the other side of the mind noise.

It went from crazy Default Mode Network mind absorbtion, to suddenly having my self destroyed. Normally it's not so jarring when I'm in a more regual mode. But I swung from extremes. 

I'm actually thrilled to get to be finally uncomfortable with anatta again. It used to be crazy and terrifying. But anatta became normalized, and later became a refuge. I would only be fleetingly creeped out by it philisophically. Or ocassionally when I get into the Equanimity "dark night", the creepy, trippy, EQ phase. I believe this points to working with something more fundamental than usual. I think it's also from the consitency of me dwelling in anatta. 

It's so easy. This whole time. "notice the 3 Cs". My instruction should have just been "notice the 1 C (anatta)". The other ones show themselves anyway.

I feel like this is almost cheating. Meditation is easier. And doing it between sits make it continous, more or less. "Straight to stream entry".

I'm a little nervous about it. Like I'm asking some girl out. I think I'm getting nervous because it feels like it actually could happen. O.o (nervously pulls colar).

Job

Yeah I don't think I'm going to get the job soon. But I WILL get it. I think that's what the message is. Life will get me there. It will just be more of a crazy winding path.
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Bahiya Baby, modified 6 Months ago at 11/29/23 9:45 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 11/29/23 9:41 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 536 Join Date: 5/26/23 Recent Posts
Some interesting stuff here. 

It's so easy. This whole time. "notice the 3 Cs". My instruction should have just been "notice the 1 C (anatta)". The other ones show themselves anyway.

Experiment with balancing the three and also experiment with feeling each one precisely. That being said... exploring anatta very deeply was a crucial part of my journey. (The three c's in general. They're so profound, so fundamental. They power the awakening machine. Yet it's so rare to see people talk about them. Most practices I've found efficacious from other traditions have aspects of the three c's but often not the full package.)

First path can have a sort of building the neurological connections for SE kind of feel to it. In later paths one tends to cycle through many full path cycles. First path can be much more up and down the path. 

I'm a little nervous about it. Like I'm asking some girl out. I think I'm getting nervous because it feels like it actually could happen. O.o (nervously pulls colar).

This is normal to feel. Don't stress. Progress steadily and it'll feel "right" when it happens.

So Resitance x pain = suffering.

Nice. Some great insight here emoticon
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 6 Months ago at 11/29/23 7:20 PM
Created 6 Months ago at 11/29/23 7:17 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
"So Resitance x pain = suffering."

Also another thing borrowed from another teacher. Shizen Young. I don't contemplate this often enough but it's a good reminder to. I guess I do sort of get it. But I haven't chewed it like maybe a koan. When sitting doing Dukkha meditation.
​​​​​​​
@bahiyababy


I do think it's a good reminder to explore the other two Cs. For impermanance, the one I LOVE LOVE LOVE doing is walking around. Especially when I'm walking to an object. I look at it. And I watch the environment, 3d camera, shift, as I get there. It no longer appears as one fluid movement as my mind so ignorantly (not a bad thing) percevied as continuous. It's utterly fascinating watching the pseudo frames patched together as I approach the object. Or walking by a giant building and watching the building shift as I walk. It's insane.

As for dukkha, on the cushion it's invaluable. Dukkha was what propelled me into relatively Hard EQ. Definitely vipassana jhana. Cool stuff...

Also, as a general foundation, noticing dukkha in sits. If I think about it in the moment I refer to calling it "tension" or more commonly "resistance". I.E. dukkha is resistance. There is also a deep aspect of noticing how I bullshit. Like why I so often get absorbed in mind noise. It's apparently to distract from the discomfort of fundamental dukkha. 

Just now in my other 22 minute sit today I felt many sensations closer to dark night stuff. And as Michael Taft would say "the object turned to mush". The reason is because I had to take a medicine that made me feel bad. I wasn't sure if it would be "possible" to meditate like that. I noticed anatta was restricted. At least "anatta" in the deeper sense I describe above. But instead I resigned to the fact my object was mush. And instread, I just focused on the physical discomfort in the body. I thought "wow, it's gonna be impossible for the mind/body to "dissolve" these unpleasant physical sensastions and "push" to equanimity or peace. This was false. It worked. I didn't blow the unpleasant sensations appart totally, but they diminished...

I do think I was honestly being a little hyperbolic when I more or less said "get rid of or ignore the other 2 Cs". Really my thinking behind this is how easy and often I'm able to notice anatta... But I know there are almost infinite more seeming insights into "anatta" for me to discover. 

And that's the spirit. I'm excited to see all angles of Dukkha and Anicca. Like I said. When observing an object when I'm walking I directly, and literally "see" impermanance. And it is an exhillarating joy. II've been through so much trouble down the path. These days I see a lot of both excitement and peace on the horizion. And not just on the horizion. Right now. I'm living it. I'm really not that bothered by the dark night anymore, apparently. There was never a giant revalation. I just noticed it's slowly gone. Weird...

As for anatta I usually notice it in the head. And I always thought it was weird some people in my yoga class apparently felt their sense of self in the chest. I, somewhat dickishly, thought they were fooling themselves because it sound spiritual or something...

But here's the thing. I noticed the "emptiness" in the head. But my heart felt "full", of love. And my stomache feels more like a "self" than the head. Seriously. Energetically it may be more the seat of my apparent self right now, than the head. When I feel the stomache, I feel anxiety, butterflys. And I feel intense identification. But also when I do it, sometimes, and even know. I do feel detatchment from it. In any case. I have a lot of stuff to test now, from hashing out my response to what you said... Even in this last paragraph, it's my first time thinking about the seat of self being in the stomach. There's a ton of room for new fresh investigation into anatta in the other "chakras".
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Bahiya Baby, modified 6 Months ago at 11/29/23 7:27 PM
Created 6 Months ago at 11/29/23 7:27 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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I do think I was honestly being a little hyperbolic when I more or less said "get rid of or ignore the other 2 Cs". Really my thinking behind this is how easy and often I'm able to notice anatta... But I know there are almost infinite more seeming insights into "anatta" for me to discover. 

One can notice the anatta of the other two c's being observed. Meditation can just kind of happen sometimes but still some days we have to help it along.  

I'm really not that bothered by the dark night anymore, apparently. There was never a giant revalation. I just noticed it's slowly gone.

Going through it a few times makes it easier to do. At later paths I found it often subtler but stranger. It can move through and act upon different facets of our life. 

As we move through stages and paths, the location and volume of our sense of self can shift and move around. Different energetic maps and ways of working with energy can come in and out of focus. 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 6 Months ago at 11/29/23 8:02 PM
Created 6 Months ago at 11/29/23 8:00 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Bahiya Baby

Going through it a few times makes it easier to do. At later paths I found it often subtler but stranger. It can move through and act upon different facets of our life. 
"stranger" interesting. I can't wait to see what this means for me later down the line.



As we move through stages and paths, the location and volume of our sense of self can shift and move around. Different energetic maps and ways of working with energy can come in and out of focus. 

This sounds fascinating and makes total sense. It helps to hear it in such basic physical concepts. "Location" "volume". Again, I'm interested to see how all this plays out. I'm less and less simply wanting SE to fix suffering. And more and more I feel like I'm taking on a curiosity approach. I've always been naturally curious, about spirituality and anything really. But the suffering really overshadowed that, after the A&P hit.

Also one thing, I've never really had multipule discrete "dark nights" and A&Ps. As far as I can tell there was only one A&P event. The A&P afterglow lasted 3 weeks. And the chronic scary part lasted years. I think a year or two after the event was when I reached EQ... But really it felt my graviational center from 2011 to maybe 2022, has simply been the DN. Even during the 3 weeks of A&P I felt a lot of anxiety. As if I'm saying my gravitational center duing my A&P weeks, was still slighly biased toward fear... 

Even when I was in EQ it felt like, there is fear. The pressure and fear of attaining SE, to end the gravitational center of fear.

I guess intuivitely it feels like I've only ever been in one cycle. The pattern was Fear -> Neutral Indifference -> OKness. Not indifferent but Not quite mature equanimity.

Edit: I'm wondering if the answer is simply, yes. Different people have different amounts of A&P events, and cycles, in 1st path. In any case It doesn't matter a whole lot. But it's interesting listening to people talk about it on here. When it hasn't apparently been my experience.
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Chris M, modified 6 Months ago at 11/30/23 7:24 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 11/30/23 7:24 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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As we move through stages and paths, the location and volume of our sense of self can shift and move around.

In my experience. and at all stages and paths, the sense of self moves around and shifts on a moment-to-moment basis.
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Bahiya Baby, modified 6 Months ago at 11/30/23 7:42 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 11/30/23 7:40 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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I agree that moment to moment the sense of self is in movement and if we're purely talking insight meditation, that's often the most important thing to see.

And my stomache feels more like a "self" than the head. Seriously. Energetically it may be more the seat of my apparent self right now


I suppose OP was discussing centring attention in different chakras and so on. I have found great variability in those kinds of practices as I have moved through stages and paths. Partly due to the volume of my awareness as I move through nanas and the style of identification I tend towards with different paths. 

These would be more macro tendencies in the location of attention than micro specificities. 

In early nanas it can be hard for me to move attention out of my head and into other nanas. In later nanas my attention can expand to include all chakras, my surroundings and whatever other energetic systems there are out there.

But obviously I didn't learn that stuff doing vipassana.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 6 Months ago at 12/1/23 9:30 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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"I suppose OP was discussing centring attention in different chakras and so on." Just that one post yes. I get what you guys are saying. Normally I don't ever really work with the"chakras". As far as "anatta" goes, I 99% of the time just work with it generally, as applied to any sensations. For some reason it just struck me last week to riff on it from that perspective.

For instance, when you said: "As we move through stages and paths, the location and volume of our sense of self can shift and move around" I read it in the context of sort of 6 sense doors. Anything and anywhere.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 6 Months ago at 12/1/23 9:47 PM
Created 6 Months ago at 12/1/23 9:38 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Job

Interesting developments with my job. So November 1st I had an infamous incident with a supervisor. Normally when something like that happens, if they're gonna give you a write up they do it promptly. Well they never did. Until I applied for that other position. Two business days after Thanksgiving BOOM. Suddenly there is a "corrective action" for "insubordination" from almost 1 month ago. As my friend who already transfered said "Brian is cock blocking you".

This dude is literally doing it so I can't transfer for 6 months to a year. This same friend of mine predicts the mobile collections department is going to collapse next year. That's how bad our boss is. 

Anyway there is good news. Working with her, I was able to figure out how to file a greivance with the Union. They basically lied about the corrective action. They said "I refused to work" and I left early. But I was given permission to leave. The thing was the supervisor was angry with me for leaving, but gave me permission nonetheless. In anycase. It's not a refusal. 

I went over the document before I filed it and it was beautiful. It was a work of art. The best part the head manager, Brian, is on vacation for almost two weeks now! And the other manager is my friend, she trained me back when I was new. If there isn't a response in 10 days I win by default... But if we meet, it's seeming like I'm still going to win. Because the language on my corrective action is a lie. LOL

It's just been an insane stressful week and a rollercoaster. To cap stone this with this document sent in, feels pretty damn liberating. No pun intended.

...

I told my friend we realised the antichrist. I said "it is done", several times over. I also refered to today as "D-Day". It feels like a day of completion. It's like reverse dark night. I went through that shit to have a free A&P today. Entering the stream will be stepping into my friend's work place, LOL!

She also called my boss a "taint tugger". Which I then expressed how that is an auspcious sign. Why? Because of the "Taint Episode" of Angello Dillulo's conversations with ZDogg... I've been getting a lot from Angello. And their taint banter has essentially made "taints" a fucking synchonicity in my life now. Of all things. It's nice when synchs are warm and cuddelly instead of mind fuckey, or reality shattering. 
Finding-Oneself (Backup Account), modified 6 Months ago at 12/9/23 7:47 PM
Created 6 Months ago at 12/9/23 7:47 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 5 Join Date: 12/2/23 Recent Posts
Backup account of "finding-oneself"

12/07/2023 - Night Time

I took two different herbal pills (stacks) for sleep and some melatonin. I felt like I was mildly tripping. Including the dread. But I was 1000% more in control than real psychedeelics. it felt like my vision and visual sense of feel-sense, like 3d body feeling, was shaped like a bunch of different swirling, fluxing shapes… 

Now I was meditating the whole time I was doing this. Also, it really required constant mindfulness to feel ok. So it forced me to meditate better. Also, it didn’t feel like I was “meditating”... sort of… Because I was doing this thing where I was just dwelling in no-self. It was crazy. And it was easy. Like I learned to ice skate and could just do it effortlessly. 

It was crazy, moment after moment, there I was. Dwelling in this. The entire body, and field, and trip… It felt as pleasant and flowy as ice skating. (But there was still a sense of foreboding, and a feeling of having to keep it together.)

Well anyway, later in this some “thing” happened. A big “flash”. Including a white flash, literally. And a state-change. It hit me pretty hard, and was unavoidable. I couldn’t hide from it… The good thing here, was compared to other “near-misses” or crazy state changes, I sort of remained on target. I kept up meditating. I was on such solid non-self, like a dog on a pile of delicious shit, that I kep it going after whatever the fuck this was.

I think that was the actual accomplishment. But it did seem like more of a crazy “state-change” than all the others I had experienced.

12/08: The next day at work I noticed super improved confidence, just in life and work in general, but also cool knowing confidence that I can effortlessly maintain mindfulness, this day. In the moment. As it played out it waned as the day got slightly more stressful.

12/09/2023

I've been absorbing Angello DiLullo content. Including reading his book  and watching videos. It's so complementary to my initial path with MCTB. It really helps defend against progress-related shadow sides. It's got me into "just sitting". It's much easier to just not describe that. That's more in the spirit of it anyway. One day I will describe it, but not now.

Angello stuff is like Zen to me. Except it provides scafolding. And that scafolding connects with all the intricate technological and technical stuff in MCTB.

Like today I was able to do at least two one hour "sits" lying down in bed. And I was able to do them "just sitting" style. As appropriate, because I also automatically note some times. Etc. I'm never going to do a pure "just sitting" technique. It's always going to be mixed, a fair ammount.

I don't have too much phenomenology to report for these sits. Although they weren't vauge except when I was falling asleep. I remember being call and thinking "body bright", "mind lively and active". During sit 2 I sit down all hyped up from tea, and notice the body overflowing with energy and the mind racing. "Body excited" "mind, raching".... I also internally have an internal awareness in consciousness where my mind "points" at the mind. Or the mind ist just pointed to. Hyper mindfulness. Hmm... Reflecting on this I'm pleased to notice the ellusive 1st vipassana jhana. I think I realized I'm finally overtly grasping it's flavour. Wow, that's fucking awesome. <3 ...

Conclusion and contemplation: It's interesting I head different reflections of the "neural paths being carved to lay the ground work for stream entry" thing. Both on DhO, and in Awake, It's Your Turn (angello dilullo). It really does feel like that. Because of the quickly developing skill of perceiving the 3 three C's in the moment. Especially anatta, and anicca. And also today's sit where it seems like I'm becoming more intracately aware of attentional phases, I'm presently in. And many many more facets of what is required.

As a side note it really makes me much happier, I've never gotten stream entry yet. It really feels like I'm building the thing piece by piece. I "sat on the door of stream entry", many times. At least a half dozen. And for many hours possibly on retreat. I used to be sad I wasn't able to "tip into" stream entry. But if I think about it, I was just practicing the skill be what it's like to be on the doorstep,  or on the sidewalk even. I was practicing some of the last skills and stages. But all that other stuff needed some practice. I couldn't have told you what the 1st and 3rd vipassana jhanas were like back then. And the 2nd was just my memory of the A&P event. I know it sounds like I'm possibly doing some psychological trick on myself, and maybe I am. But it does feel this way.

I remeber Daniel saying how much trouble it would have saved him had he got to stream entry the 1st time. I can't say nor comment because I've never etnered the stream. Well see after what I think. But listening to Angello DiLullos and his guests, really opened my mind. This guy who got stream entry had a similar sort of optimism, as I do. He didn't wake up unil he was 50, and he started at 19. He said that his 19 year old self would be upset if told it would take him 30 years. But post SE he felt like this path, was actually perfect.

I'll sum it up in one statement. It feels like a video game. It feels like a calling. And it's this thing I'm working on that I can be "proud" of, in the healthy sense. It's something I'm building on the inside. Something built regarding consciousness itself. Or apparently with the 3 Cs, or the "sensate universe" etc. 

The first statement. It literally feels like a video game where I'm leveling the character up, and I can see all of his stat progressions. But it's hyperreal. Life is more real than before the A&P. And I suspect this trend will continue.
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Geoffrey Gatekeeper of the Gateless Gate, modified 6 Months ago at 12/10/23 9:41 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 12/10/23 9:41 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 407 Join Date: 10/30/23 Recent Posts
I think just sitting can be a good counterbalance to noting and the 3 characteristics. I found when I started meditation, I was going ham with effort, but I also didn't really know how to turn it off. Well, until I started to pick up just sitting, and it helped me differentiate between intention and things I was mistaken for a self doing. Now I can tune the amount of effort generally pretty well. But I think learning something like a shikintaza is a needed stepping stone to nailing down effortless 24/7 mindfulness.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 6 Months ago at 12/16/23 4:00 PM
Created 6 Months ago at 12/16/23 3:58 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
"I think just sitting can be a good counterbalance to noting and the 3 characteristics. I found when I started meditation, I was going ham with effort, but I also didn't really know how to turn it off. Well, until I started to pick up just sitting, and it helped me differentiate between intention and things I was mistaken for a self doing. Now I can tune the amount of effort generally pretty well. But I think learning something like a shikintaza is a needed stepping stone to nailing down effortless 24/7 mindfulness."

I have a similar experience as you, but I still don't think I ever went super high effort compared to a lot of other folks here. I think my most practiced basic technique is sort of choicless awareness/6 sense doors, 3 charactersitics. And the runner up is sort of "skeletal noting". Off cushion my most practiced thing is just sort of being in a super fun effortless flow state. I super agree I'm gonna need to learn shikintaza. Actually since my last post I got a completely different understanding of it from reading the description of "natural meditation" in Awake, It's Your Turn. The reason I mentioned techniques above is because I was reading up on "fast noting" and "detailed noting". And I realized I need to work on this more. A lot more. Some of my best sits, quickly getting to EQ are doing this. Which I'm saying because I did my first long and detailed noting, last night, in a long time. I think I've very mildly learned how to do what shikintaza is supposed to do. After reading that, I realized how there's a ton of room for improvement here. (which I mean in a good way).
"It may be worth paying attention to this fact in your just sittings - notice how "you" don't have to do anything to see phenomena arise and disappear. You don't have to do anything to notice the 3c. You could imagine a form of "just sitting" style concentration where you don't have to do anything, you just let the breath appear in consciousness."

Yes, this is really good stuff. There is a lot of fertile ground here for me in experimenting with attention/effort and how that works. Also specifically realted to more "concentrationy" style meditation. I have come to really appreciate the descriptions of the 4 attentional modes, and "attention phase harmony", describing the jhanas/ vipassana-jhanas, one through four. I'm super duper curious about how the jhanas work. And how attention works in slightly wet vipassana.
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Geoffrey Gatekeeper of the Gateless Gate, modified 6 Months ago at 12/10/23 9:48 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 12/10/23 9:48 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 407 Join Date: 10/30/23 Recent Posts
It may be worth paying attention to this fact in your just sittings - notice how "you" don't have to do anything to see phenomena arise and disappear. You don't have to do anything to notice the 3c. You could imagine a form of "just sitting" style concentration where you don't have to do anything, you just let the breath appear in consciousness.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 5 Months ago at 12/31/23 10:17 PM
Created 5 Months ago at 12/31/23 10:13 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
This is a mainline meditation log, session, entry. But first a "development" as of late. The development is encapsulated by the fact that I accidentally showed up 1 hour early to work, and was able to deeply meditate, which promted me to have a better day, where I'm more in the flow-state of not having a self.

I remember sitting there in my car, restless, and I was like ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ shit. There is no difference between the present moment during PERFECT meditation conditions (silent at home), or feeling restless before work in my car. I was also like ¯\_(ツ)_/¯  shiiit, might as well just be in jhana. What proceeded was sitting in the lessons of 4th vipassana jhana. I got into a state where it felt like my head space was in high EQ, but I couldn't literally have been in high EQ, since it was only 10-15m in to the sit. Anyway, the overall lesson is I can chill in the present moment. ALL present moments... The second lesson is the lesson on being in a selfless flow state. Or other variations of said theme.  The third lesson is learning how to just chill, sit back, and steep in the hot tub sensations of what Shizen calles "impermanace", vibrations. Or alternative steep in the hot tub sensations of jhana. Either way, they are essentially the same to me, they condition the mind in the same way right now. So anyway, yeah. Lessons 1 - 3. And then I'm going to get into the meditation today, which I had applied them to. But I'll continue about one of the lessons.

Over the months and weeks I realized how big of an effect this "not having a self inside the head", has been effecting life and practice. I'd also been a little bummed I wasn't able to reach true EQ territory as of late. Not for a lack of skill, for a lack of motivation inside the body/mind. So if I can't get the momentum to get there, I'll cheat it and just circumvent it and "spacially" be there already...

But if I'm changing my baseline by dwelling inside the high EQ spacial mode, what would happen when I ACTUALLY get there? Well I did it today

High EQ Sit

Duration: 90 Minutes

Beggining: Restless. The last week I was really sick and couldn't properly meditate. I felt like I had a pent up, backed up, several weeks log of needing more formal meditation. I failed again and again today. I was almost falling asleep and knew I wouldn't be able to meditate properly. Luckily by like 9:00pm, all the energies aligned and it was time. But whenever I don't meditate for a while the slovenly lack of motivation is a huge barrier. I did not want to be on the cushion. I knew it felt good, though, to be in the present moment. I felt a mix of both "smoothness", calmness and also restlessness, aversion, dukkha. Of course the dukkha, properly perceived, makes great rocket fuel for concentration. 

Technique: I was noting all sorts of stuff. Especially core things. Trying to be equanamous. THen switching to just noticing. While noting ocassionally. (The whole time having no-self as 11th nana, base technique).

Middle: Slowly I transitioned into EQ. IDK how long it took to get there. Probably 30 minutes to get to low EQ. I remember the transition and the "chunky" phase. It was a different chunkiness than before. Since my dark nights are different these days. It's basically a more intense version of the smoothness/calmness vs. restlesness/aversion, mentioned above. That's why sometimes the nana map is confusing. Like how the fuck did it feel like I'm in equanimity as soon as I sat down? To give context, my earlier dark nights felt like labored breathing, and massive ammounts of phsical anxiety. Low EQ would initiate with the feelings of smoothness and calmness. Or at the very least just calmness. Or a lack of negative stimuli. As I entered EQ, I had that no-self/chakra thought. Meaning, remembering to be aware of how the process of unfoldment of non-self happens inside the abdomen, not just head. Because for me, the sticking spot is inside the adrenaline filled belly. Not inside the head. When I had this thought, I had the ear thing happen. The third ear thing. What happens is a transition of the audio of the tinitus, its a tone shift. And between the tone shift is the deafening thing, where the air feels like it gets sucked out of the room, and sound is quieter for a second. It's really weird. I took it as a sign the line of thinking as a practice tip is correct. What happened next was crazy. I said "just stay with it". Meaning, stay with the sound dampening/tone change, and stay with the abdomen. "Don't worry, you can't fuck it up. Don't be afraid of the sound thing. Just stay with the abdomen. The ringing will go back to normal in a second". But it didn't. What happened was a recurring sound dampening/tone change, a way bigger one this time (it has a somatic, synathesia element to it), it felt like a big thud inside me. It scared me. And I had an adrenaline dump.

Late: I knew I was in EQ, and it was getting time for a postural change. I sat up and drank my iced yerba mate, it was so fucking good. The chilness of drinking it just made me go deeper into EQ, and loosen up a bit. Being off the cushion and feeling less formal made me drop the effort entirely.

Next I transitioned into the couch posture, laying back. I transitioned gradually, more and more, into classic 4th jhana territory. I entered the slipery mind phase. It was some of the best high EQ sitting I've ever had. I entered the classic slippery mind, feeling like you're going to go insane phase. I noticed/noted it. But I wasn't as afraid. 

Also my fear of "loosing" EQ is gone. It's always been erroneos. I've never "lost" it. Also, the fear of slippery mind/ the fear of being able to effectively dwell in the weird open/expansive "inside the head" stage of EQ. Where it feels like there is a giant hole in the head/no-self. Well, because I've been practicing this in all nanas, for months now, i've shifted my baseline closer to how the mind feels in the 4th jhana. So it was so natural. It's not as "slippery" in the sense it feels like I will loose it. But it just feels like a more natural version of it. More self-perpetuating. Also I applied on of the lessons from "show up to work early and do jhana in the car day". When I was sitting in high EQ, I said. "Well ok, I'm im jhana, this is jhana, it's not out of reach anymore or mystical, or unatainable. Just pretend like you're in the car again. This is it. Just sit back and steep in the jhana hot tub. AHHHH emoticon" lol

The one part I did run up against a wall was fear of actually finishing 1st path. I viscerally felt it, many times. For maybe 10 to 20 minutes on and off. It was fascinating. Within 2 hours it's amazing how I can go from craving nibanna and pouting about it, to being afraid of feeling like I'm on it's door step. (I was. And am).

This is what I hate about these detailed phenomenology logs. It takes way too long to write it out. And is never enought detail. I need to write another 20 paragraphs. But it takes too much energy to rememeber everything relevant that happened during this sit. But yes, I am gaining skill at this. And I will enter the stream. It's inevitable at this point. I just need to keep doing all the stuff I've been writing about here the last three years, now, since I've rebooted practice.

It's been almost 13 years since I crossed the A&P. And I'm almost 33, the Jesus age. Time to do this shit.

I'm not so worried about having crazy concentration every day now to get to EQ jhana every day. I think the fact I practice the head space of EQ almost every day is a huge fail safe. This is working. But the accelerant and catalyst is the fact I can and do get to physical EQ, aka 4th vipassana jhana. If I actually can do this multipule days in a row, sometimes. I think that's more than enough. Wish me luck. 
shargrol, modified 5 Months ago at 1/1/24 7:03 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/1/24 7:00 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 2536 Join Date: 2/8/16 Recent Posts
Sounds good. Those feelings of fear around SE actually being possible in the near future is a good sign. 

Don't worry too much about perfecting EQ. Even "maintaining" can be a bit of an ego/status thing. Just enjoy getting good at chilling in the moment and don't worry if your mind or your life creates some kind of momentary busyiness, be chill with being unchill too.  Profound EQ, the kind of EQ that leads to SE, is EQ with everything, even things that don't seem classically EQ. In a way, EQ isn't something you do, it's more like something you don't do. emoticon 

Same thing with SE. It's really isn't something you do. SE is like a sun burning up it's fuel and collapsing into a black hole. Or like a satellite using up it's momentum and being pulled down out of orbit. You basically calm/exhaust the doing urge and then on a sit when you're not doing much in particular, you fall into a hole and land back in the spot where you were already sitting.

Nothing complicated about it, just getting good at the basics of chilling or "experiencing this moment intimately without resistance or manipulation" or "allowing the full experience of this moment without greed, aversion, or indifference."

Best wishes for your chillin'! emoticon
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 5 Months ago at 1/14/24 2:17 PM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/14/24 2:17 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Hi Shargrol. A few days after you responded I was contemplating, or more accurately, experiencing "chilling". Sort of working with the universal quality of equanimity regardless of meditating or not, regardless of being in the EQ ñana or not.

Sometimes reducing it to one simple English word is extremely helpful. Just "be chill".

I was rereading the "shargrol post compilation blog". Anytime I saw the word "maintining" I made sure to understand it.

Part of my life narrative/meditation path does indeed seem to be maintaining.

For a few days I was getting into EQ vipassana jhana. But wasn't able to get back. 

It's just the ebbs and flows of the practice. The vipassana jhanas are nice and sure do lube up the practice. But I need to keep the roots of the practice in the back of my mind. Bare senate awareness 

One thing that helped was reading about being equanimous with whether a vipassana jhana is present or not. Dwelling and soaking in it unconditionally when it is present. And when I start to notice it fading, just observe and study it. Keep being chill.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 5 Months ago at 1/17/24 10:58 PM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/17/24 10:58 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I've noticed a trend in Practice.

The paranoia and drama around having to maintain equanimity and progress falling away, as I simultaneously get better at "getting to" and dwelling in the EQ ñana. This coincides with more confidence through repetition that I can get there.

I surprise myself I'm able to keep getting back go it. I clearly have developed some level of skill now but I feel like an imposter.

But the main surprise and trend of note is now shifting to just "wanting" to meditate more. In quotes because I'll do it, when my animal-mind wants to do something else, for instance. Or the motivation behind intending to sit is very boring and matter of fact. 

Kenneth Folk talks about a phase right before stream entry where the meditator just sits every day, very naturally. He asks them they say "well, there's nothing I'd rather do". And in this stage their sitting time naturally goes up.

The "matter of fact" thing is like: It's the evening after work, and nothing really brings me much satisfaction, even medition, but I know meditation is just the pragmatic thing to do at the moment.

This is all besides thr point when it comes back to the quality of equanimity. I.E. just being "chill".

Now, on that note I have recalled the two different versions of higher equanimity.

1 - The wave-like, altered state of consciousness. Jhanic. Smooth feeling sensations. Varying levels of all these qualities and more.

And

2 - The "normal" version. So normal it seems indistinct from regular life. Sometimes it feels like you're not meditating, or very dull.

I associate #2 with the principle of being chill... I don't have to weight #1 as much. And in turn it makes me more chill...

One very trippy insight I got when I accidentally got high eating raw weed flowers for the nutrients. I vividly recalled Daniel saying "you have do synchronize with a sensation and the disappear" a very different skill than vipassana subject/object mediation. When I was high it was absolutely crazy to ponder. More like A&P-like consciousness. It's an A&P insight into the higher ñanas, from its perspective.
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Bahiya Baby, modified 5 Months ago at 1/17/24 11:47 PM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/17/24 11:46 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 536 Join Date: 5/26/23 Recent Posts
The A&P is itself a very significant insight and points to something very important. It's in the name. 

Really grokking that things arise AND pass away was important for me in later stages of practice. 

Note: arise AND pass away... not arise THEN pass away. It's happening contigously. Seeing that, I believe, for whatever reason, fuels the astonishment of the A&P experience. 

​​​​​​​It's utterly baffling.
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Geoffrey Gatekeeper of the Gateless Gate, modified 5 Months ago at 1/18/24 4:20 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/18/24 4:20 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 407 Join Date: 10/30/23 Recent Posts
I've found personally all sorts of states of consciousness come up - normal, more dark nighty stuff, dreamy, cotton bally, formless, wavey sensations, etc etc. Just stick with things as they come up. Eventually they flip over to the other side, and it feels like a relief when they do. 
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Geoffrey Gatekeeper of the Gateless Gate, modified 5 Months ago at 1/18/24 6:01 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/18/24 6:01 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 407 Join Date: 10/30/23 Recent Posts
I will add, people make a big fuss about low and high equanimity and I have not found that to be a particularly used thing in my own practice 
shargrol, modified 5 Months ago at 1/18/24 6:56 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/18/24 6:53 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 2536 Join Date: 2/8/16 Recent Posts
It's interesting, "maintaining" is also what Heavenly Gods (Devas) do in the god realm and it's associated with pride. Conversely, imposter syndrome and feeling inferior but striving to "achieve" more is also what the Powerful Gods (Asuras) do in the powerful god realm. While working through EQ it's very common to alternate to alternate between have-it-and-want-to-keep-it (Deva) and lost-it-and-want-to-achieve-it (Asura). This is all just different language for the same dynamic, but sometimes having this mythic-poetic language is helpful for noticing these dynamics in meditation. 

People often get "high EQ" wrong and assume its a perfection of spacious, clear, still, calm EQ. 

"...The odd thing about High Equanimity is that most of the time you don’t notice you are in it. In fact, not noticing that you are in it is part of its hallmark. It can feel so normal that it might feel like terrible practice, if we were even thinking about such things, which is not nearly as likely in actual High Equanimity.

... When High Equanimity happens, it seems so ordinary that we may try to make it into something extraordinary. If we are attached to ideals about how amazing, blazing, bright, dramatic, powerful, sensational, and thrilling practice is supposed to be, we may keep seeking those qualities and prevent ourselves from being with the very ordinary-feeling but clearly extraordinary stage of High Equanimity.

High Equanimity can happen in many unexpected situations, such as walking to the bathroom after a sit, or just doing ordinary things like watching TV, as you lie down for a nap, daydreaming, brushing teeth, or during formal practice, though at that point practice is unlikely to feel much like practice or anything special or unusual. It can feel pretty boring, like we no longer care at all if we awaken, practice, or anything like that. Attempts to fake it are common if people know the map theory, but the real deal just shows up and pervades quietly on its own.
​​​​​​​

It is quite common to experience High Equanimity during walking practice, as most people mistakenly believe that walking practice is not as important as sitting, so they let the pressure off, which in this case is good. This phase may be very quick, just a few minutes or even a few seconds, but if we have set up our practice well, that is all it may need. "


11. Equanimity – MCTB.org
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 5 Months ago at 1/18/24 8:40 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/18/24 8:38 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Thank you  guys. You all touched on different helpful aspects... as far as high EQ I don't think (I could be wrong tho) I ever got there yet. I think my cutting edge is "high mastery". And usually when I know I get out past the DN, it's when the "chunky" phase is gone, which I label "low EQ".

I think I get sloppy with my writing sometimes. If I control + F'd this page I bet I'd find me saying it. "Higher EQ" when I uses it means "past the chunky phase, up to my cutting edge". But since others read this sometimes I need to shore up language usage a tidy bit 

But the actual high EQ descriptors from MCTB, help. Just for knowledge sake but also to have less of these mental neurosis come up around when I touch my cutting edge. Regardless "note and notice it" helps. Theory Is also invaluable support.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 5 Months ago at 1/20/24 10:37 PM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/20/24 6:36 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
So far, I think I've been understanding how I need to just keel being chill. Keep practicing. Rereading the shargrol compilation page. In there, there are many things that make more sense, that I'm learning how to do now. 

"[At some point ] just keep practicing (in a non forceful way), it's only a matter of time".

Thats really how it feels sometimes. Theres a lot of little psychological, experiential, LEARNING journies I go on. Burning out my belief that I think there is some thing I can DO or have to do, to make this happen. Etc etc.

I'm practicing every day. And my practice time has sort of naturally gone up and maybe platue around 45m average.

I'm seeing of more of a benefit from do nothing meditation.

It's not that I go out of my way to do that, but I'm seeing that, more and more, it's just what I'm going to naturally do sometimes as whatever this is, burns itself out.

conversely it's healthy to "push" to get to more pleasant feeling EQ... the need for getting into pleasant EQ is pragmatic. It's healing. Ive experienced a lot of stress the last year. I even found 3 Grey hairs. Being in EQ is like the consciousness version of the natural shaking animals do to slough off trauma. Additionally this conditions the mine for SE.

As does the do nothing. I really am noticing more that sometimes I just sit with no expectations or intentions. Even if it's sloppy or I get dreamy or fall asleep. Even if I wander in thought. More and more I'm conditioning a deeper, simpler, quality of equanimity. The mind quality not the ñana.

one other thing is exploring the earlier ñanas. I don't necessarily know how to systematically do this, but I'm trying. I used to just mean 1-3, but I'm including 4 in there now. After realizing what instantaneous arising/passing of sensations in the moment can mean 

it's all good

[Edit]

I was thinking about the term "cutting edge", which is usually meant to mean, highest ñana, at least pre-SE. And I realized there are these other axioms of different edges.

Like the motivation or lack thereof. A curious axiom. The weirdest part is also not wanting to meditate by doing it anyway, like a robot. But yet still doing the practice well, to ok...

Another axiom is just sitting there with really no intent. So called "do nothing" meditation. I even hate labeling it.

I find do-nothing easier than concentration. The problem with a deliberate centering is my mindset. Effortfulness, its off putting. This is the opposite problem of laxity. I experience laxity and overstimulstion with concentration. 
I noticed that, If reframe the word concentration, it literally means the same thing as centering. Concentration, like an herbal concentrate. Take all your consciousness energy and concentrate it into a potent energy ball. Or in J4, the entire full field gets concentrated and smoothened. ♡

By far, the most important axiom to work with is the calm dwelling sort of one, with no effort. However we want to describe it. This is the cutting edge of one's ability to just be chill. This axiom is related to concentration, as well as the doing nothing. Vipassana wise it's related to the EQ ñana, and the quality of equanimity.

All that being said, there ironically isn't anything to say or do. As I mentioned before it's likely only a matter of timing now. I just keep practicing and all this stuff unravels... It DOES feel fractal-like. Looking back, all the processes of getting my life together. "The house cleaning phase" of the stages... I feel like I've been in a half dozen mini-house cleaning phases. One of the final phases of the fractal is learning to just be calm. There isn't anything I can do here, I can't force it. And it's pretty boring. Look I've been in all the mini-phases of the EQ ñana except high EQ. Ive seen the mixture of ok sensations, and bad lumps of reobservation. Ive experienced a breakthrough out of reobservation. Ad well as a gradual transition. I've experienced the middle phase of EQ, where things start to melt together and become a vipassana-jhana. Ive felt the equanimity there. Ive spent a reasonable amount of time in the mini-dark night of the EQ ñana. Ñana 11.11.reObservation. I'm trying to get to 11.11.11. Presumably which can be either trippy and jhanic or normal and even boring. The fact that high EQ can and/or should be boring, I feel like, will help make it more tolerable to just do the sometimes boring work.
shargrol, modified 5 Months ago at 1/21/24 6:31 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/21/24 6:31 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 2536 Join Date: 2/8/16 Recent Posts
Really well understood and nicely said.

Yes, after a certain point, the pressure is off. You know that only an ongoing practice will create conditions for further insights (and SE), yet you also know there is nothing you can do to force insights (or SE). So it's just like the old saying, "the harder I work, the luckier I am" -- except in this case it's more "the more simply I practice, the more insights naturally happen." emoticon

By the way, this also relates to the third fetter. We get attached to rites and rituals when we think there is some clever and formulatic way to get enlightened besides good, consistent, non-heroic meditation practice. But when we realize that the only thing that works is personal practice, then a lot of the superficial aspects of a religious system become less relevant/imporant. 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 5 Months ago at 1/21/24 4:44 PM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/21/24 4:44 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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@shargrol

Thanks for the reinforcement. Also, interesting connection to the third fetter. emoticon
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 5 Months ago at 1/21/24 5:37 PM
Created 5 Months ago at 1/21/24 4:43 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Ok, so today I had one of my most novel experiences (not powerful or profound, simply novel and different). It was during the third sit. Let me document them in order though. It was two sits, sitting reclined on my couch, 55m & 49m, repecively and the thrid was 35m. 

Sits one and two was more or less experimenting with low effort practice. Also, deliberately, on the couch, to make relaxation easier, and more thourough. I was alternating doing stuff, like taking a dump, and reading dharma stuff, between sits. Nothing crazy happned during the first two sits, just good basic practice.

On the toilet reading dharma, contemplating stuff, I decided I want to get to the 4th vipassana jhana, like the nice wet version. I want to soak in it and feel good. Why? I don't know. Why not? The problem is, I've never really intended to do that. It just sort of happened. 

Well in any case, I sat down. The third sit, on the cushion. I will say this, right off the bat. I had the confidence and believed, it is more possible due to the fact I already sat damn near two hours, also read dhama, and took a couple shits... I thought "welp. I have momentum so it should, theoretically be possible, no? 

Well I didn't get to 4th jhana. No. But what did happen? Some other weird, altered state of consciousness. It was similar to the 4th vipassana jhana in a way, but was more relagated to the head, type area. I'll try to document the sit sequentially, phenomenologically:

Sit: It began as a normal sit. One thing was different though within 60 seconds, I felt tingling on my chest. On my skin. Like really nice. Usually it's not in the torso. And even more rare is it's not on it. I continued and I began with the breath in the nostril type region. When it got uncomfortable I switched. Like I said I just did mostly, just sitting, earlier. But now I was noting my ass off. At some point I slowed the noting. And finally, what caused this thing, was I dwelled on the sounds.. 1. The heating. 2. Breath. 3. Inner ear ringing, and crucially, #4, the sound of the mind. Also, and this is even more key, I deliberaly muted it a bit. I made the mind more quiet.

Then there was a space shift. It felt like I was in my face. For the most part. I was sort of grooving with the breathing, and moving my body even. And the breath began sort of pushing my seat of consciousness up more into my head, sort of. It's hard to describe. As I continued I realized this was working. I had entered some state that was like vipassana-jhana 4, but not it exactly. My goal was to feel nice, condition the mind more, and heal the body. I would count this as that... So I didn't just accomplish my goal, I explored new territory. Inside the state, inside my head, it felt like I was under water.

Some thoughts: The whole time I have a usual form of varrying levels of physical anxiety inside my belly. Somewhere between butterfly type sensations, and anxiety. Mildy unpleasant and/or iritating... Also, (it's always embarassing to bring up), I was feeling my usual, partial, kratom withdrawals, I feel sometimes, depending on the doses I've taken recently. (It's an opoid leaf, I take every day, and intned to quit. I'm phyically addicted to it).

So here is the thing. This happened while both feeling the anxiety and withdrawals. I've also felt both of these inside the 4th vipassana-jhana. It sort of feels like vj-4 is like an overlay of sensassions over the entire field. It changes some layer of it. Like I have wrote before I never experienced #'s 1 or 2. (It seems like I may have experienced 3 just now (intense enough to actually consider it)), and I associate the constant low level tinglings in my arms and feet with j1/j2. I noticed that I can still feel it when im in vj-4, but it's sort of under (or something), the field of smoothness. It's weird. So my point is, it's possible to have enough equanimity with the bad circumstantial sensations, and still have some sort of pleasant altered state of consciousness arise.

To me it sounds like a partial vj-3. Because I didn't noticed any "bliss". I'm not even sure if it was that. I'm more confident I experienced vj-4, but still it's a question mark. I call it that because it makes sense, but it's subject to change. 

In sum, I'm happy I was able to set a real resolve/intention to make something happen. In a healthy way that actually worked. Because I know being forceful wont get this shit to happen. My goal is wholesome, I just need rest. And I want to heal the body/mind.

So now I have three working basic goals. One, stream entry. Two, being calm, learning the deep skill of equanimity. And Three, entering these healing states, on the cushion, to make my life better. 

Entering them feels "spiritual" too, in the conventional sense. Like I'm more able to connect with my entire purpose in this universe. Connect to an alive intelligence, and pray to it.

[edit]: Wow, holy fuck. Did I underestimate my daily average time. I've meditated multipule hours most days the last 7 days. The only day I didn't was one day I only did 20 minutes, presumably becasue of work. Looking back, I don't see how I fit all this time in, but I guess because after work, I feel like shit and proverbially shrug, and say, "why the fuck not", after which, I inevitably feel a little better. :| lol : )

[Edit 2]: Reflecting, looking back, I think the mores important take away is the "stilling" of the mind. As I have continued to work more with "nondual", type meditations, I've naturally gained skill in stilling the mind. But this wasn't an intentional result. This was the first time I had applied it when I was quietly sitting.

The famous/classic,  "Ian And (user)" thread on jhana, discusses stilling the mind. So back then I tried it, but it's a decade later. I actually got a little milage out of it ♡

[Edit 3]: I was going back rereading my thread to see anything helpful. 

"how little energy/effort does it take for the mind to be mindful
?"

I'm storing it here to reference back. I wasn't ready for it, one month ago. On paper I have some aversion to the idea of practicing it. But I want it in my back pocket. When I'm sitting there. Calm. Or calm AND bored. I want to do this. Or at work tomorrow (no aversion to in daily life though).

I wasn't at the stage per se, last month. But now I'm developing slightly deeper equanimity. I feel like this is on similar wavelength with the stilling the mind technique.

A scary prospect to me is combining the techniques. How little effort does it take to still the mind. Why scary? I'm still weaning off of "the pressure" to practice right. Also, it feels simultaneously cool, and uncomfortable and weird to still the mind and experience this sort of "nondual". Or "nonjewel" as the British say ♡
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 5 Months ago at 1/24/24 10:10 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
The last two days I have had really fucking sleepy sits. It’s weird how the mind gets when you’re sort of drifting off into dream land. Any mind is weird like that. Like regular discursive thought mind. But meditation mind is really really weird, when I’m half falling asleep but definitely awake. It’s weird, sometimes it seems like I’m not meditating, or its’ not meditation. Sometimes consciousness is slipping into this more dull/ simultaneously weird/dreamy state. Slippery too. 


Like non meditation mind will have these weird motions in thought, and automatically continue on in these weird consciousness alleys, journeys and fragments. The meditation version is the same, except it thinks its meditating. I know what it feels like, and I know what I’m trying to get at. But I cant bring it back. Yesterday I believe I had one sit like this. Boy, I didn’t really want to sit either.


Sits Today: Total time 90m


Sit 1 I did not want to sit at all. I reclined on the couch and started practicing. And I got into the above aforementioned state. Then at some point I woke myself out of it. Now I was half in, half out of the state. Definitely back from the dream land. Awake now, and groggy. It was at this point I continued, reflecting back on being in that fucking weird state. 24 minutes


Sit 2, was no less not wanting to sit. I sat on the hard cushion this time. I really didnt want to sit for like 20 to 30 minutes. Then I didn’t care. Then I started getting hard physical pain. And equanimity to it. I did a lot of sitting after 20 minutes with my eyes open. This was truly do-nothing meditation. As far as I know. Still a lot of work to improve “do-nothing” though. Eventually I decided I’m going to incline to a more jhanic sit. I worked with the energy. And I also worked on stilling the mind. I worked on noticing sound. At some point I reclined on the ground for the last 5 to 10 minutes. I finally felt like I was ok. It is one hour later now? How the fuck did I do a not wanting to sit, sit, and come out being ok sitting, then being ok in general?


Stressful Social Situations Lately



I’ve noticed a theme the past two days. Painful social situations teaching me a lesson. Or just being outright stressful, with no seeming lesson. Or situations arising to show me how to help people. 


Case 1. I was working my blood drive at a warehouse, we were set up in their employee meeting room. To get in we have to go through a locked security door. These doors go against everything in my personality. There was this guy standing on the other side, trying to go the opposite way. He let me in but was all butt hurt about it. o.O It stressed me out the entire day, and going into today.


Case 2. Lady was off. I sensed her hostile energy toward me. Finally when I go to take her blood she basically tells me shes scared and had a bad experience the last time, but not in a very adult way. I feel a lot of pressure, I get the blood draw good though luckily. And I realize my job is to coddle people way older than me. I remember my one coworkers attitude. Shes self described “the most ghetto person working at the red cross”, MEANING, when an angry karen is yelling at her, she will always win. But also I’ve seen her sweet side. She coddled the donor with a motherly babying voice.


Case 3. 80 year old lady with recent shortness of breath tries to donate. I have to call the support center, and the regional doc. When it’s done, I try to let her down gently, that she can’t donate. She is respectful of me but expresses sadness, and fundamental upset, repeating “it’s not ok”. I try to teach her a bigger picture perspective, and she doesn’t get it. I realize after that some people, the only way I’m going to help them, is to just listen. It reminds me of this one time this guy on dialysis tried to donate. That day coworker was like “people are crazy”,


On this topic and more I’ve noticed myself just feeling my body at work. I’ve also noticed “reality being shredded” in the negative sense, but it’s ok. Watching patches of reality shutter at the urinal taking a pisser, is actually entertaining.


I also was reading Geoffreys meditation log and appreciating the fact he always just sits and whatever happens happens. I was really chewing on that fact. Especially considering all the interesting experiences therein.

Edit: I should add, some of the social stess I feel, I am able to own it, and let it do what it needs to do by feeling my body. As I wrote initially above, it is the ebodied act of feeling the body. Its like Daniel Ingrams technique, "thoughts in the room". Except the room is your body. And the thoughts is the stress. The stress can be there by itself, or it can be related to social situations.

The stress is a distillation of all of the fears, failings and paranoia of the past. In the present there is no longer a source or story for it. It's just THERE. There is however more of a tendency for the mind to define the stress as fear for the future.

Basically anytime I feel the stress, I apply the basic feel the body technique. And I do it from the perspective of understanding the Buddha's teaching on dukkha. The truth will set you free. The stress turns into vibrations, instantaneously, and I'm free. It still hurts, but shinzens formula is Pain × resistance = suffering². The square was added to be cutsie. 

So my main technique during this shit show of my work life is feeling the body. Thoughts in the room is the next level. Actually it's the third level. Just the room is the second level. If I can embody myself good, then feel the room, if I can do that, then notice thoughts in the room/body.

But this just begins to get overly complicated. I could add others levels, and thats fine. It's just the main thing is A. Dealing with the stress and B. Helping people.

So A. Is being embodied and B. Is being in the room. (I hate being in the room)(vulnerable and scary sometimes). Feeling being in the body is actually safe mostly.

But the stress is the killer. Besides the sleepy meditations, the body stress has been the second challenge this week. I just need more sleep and need to keep being embodied ♡
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Geoffrey Gatekeeper of the Gateless Gate, modified 4 Months ago at 2/1/24 6:53 PM
Created 4 Months ago at 2/1/24 6:52 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 407 Join Date: 10/30/23 Recent Posts
The last two days I have had really fucking sleepy sits. It’s weird how the mind gets when you’re sort of drifting off into dream land. Any mind is weird like that. Like regular discursive thought mind. But meditation mind is really really weird, when I’m half falling asleep but definitely awake. It’s weird, sometimes it seems like I’m not meditating, or its’ not meditation. Sometimes consciousness is slipping into this more dull/ simultaneously weird/dreamy state. Slippery too. 

Enjoy the bizarreness! I found these kinds of sits quiet weird and fun.

Still a lot of work to improve “do-nothing” though.

Hmmm..... work more to do less you say?

I’ve noticed a theme the past two days. Painful social situations teaching me a lesson. Or just being outright stressful, with no seeming lesson. Or situations arising to show me how to help people. 

Here's a lesson. Where did the past go? How are these things effecting you right now in this very instance? When you're dealing with one of these folks, can you feel the present slip away just as fast as it arrives?

Case 3. 80 year old lady with recent shortness of breath tries to donate. I have to call the support center, and the regional doc. When it’s done, I try to let her down gently, that she can’t donate. She is respectful of me but expresses sadness, and fundamental upset, repeating “it’s not ok”. I try to teach her a bigger picture perspective, and she doesn’t get it. I realize after that some people, the only way I’m going to help them, is to just listen. It reminds me of this one time this guy on dialysis tried to donate.

Did you let her know the official Red cross policy of "trying not to kill old people"? emoticon

I also was reading Geoffreys meditation log and appreciating the fact he always just sits and whatever happens happens. I was really chewing on that fact. Especially considering all the interesting experiences therein.

emoticon

The stress is a distillation of all of the fears, failings and paranoia of the past. In the present there is no longer a source or story for it. It's just THERE. There is however more of a tendency for the mind to define the stress as fear for the future.

Try looking for gaps in it throughout your day. As you get more and more used seeing the gaps, when it does come up try combining with the "slipperiness of the present" stuff from above, and realize when you are in the heat of it, it too is slippery and won't last.
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 4 Months ago at 1/31/24 4:37 PM
Created 4 Months ago at 1/31/24 4:36 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 2892 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
I know "non-heroic" is mentioned a lot around here, however at some stage biting into the stick while the operation is ongoing without the anesthetic is a good way to go about this. And I say "at times". There will/could be a time when Re-observation will suck so bad one will feel as if going insane, and in such a place one could give up and get up from the practice. At this time "leaning into" the unpleasant experience is of benefit. If necessary NOTE ALOUD, and KEEP at it until the timer chimes in! emoticon KNOW that you are sitting there only until the end of the session. Its OK emoticon Nothing bad will happen. Im talking daily 1-3 times pracice here. NOT intensive retreats! If on a retreat then sure, take it easy.

BTW, in my experience there is only ONE such really bad sit that after its been seen as a matter-of-fact experience, stuff moves naturally into equanimity nana. Dan Ingram mentions many times in his book "acceptance" emoticon Yes, it sucks, and its sad, and its disgusting, and its scary (fearful), and I just want all this to come to and end and just stop! , and I can't concentrate clearly anymore ... emoticon yes, its ok. Acceptance of all matter-of-fact experience. Note it. Gently but consistently and aloud if it helps go on without stopping such a fruitful session.

Of course, ignore what I say if it doesn't resonate with you. 

Best wishes! 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 4 Months ago at 2/10/24 10:27 AM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Papa, Geoffrey. Thank you.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 4 Months ago at 2/21/24 1:21 PM
Created 4 Months ago at 2/21/24 1:21 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I just want to make a quick update, I'm at work on break right now. I don't have much motivation to post or response lately apparently, and whenever I do I get proverbial connection issues... in any case something is different lately.

More or less. Whenever Im in a good mood and all things are lining up, it's as if, more or less, I'm done. It doesn't matter if I enter the stream anymore. I know it is an inevitability. Im sort of already there.

The system wants to be awake. And it Is and/or will be.

Also its pretty fucking easy and standard to get to equanimity multiple times a week.

Also I'm going to quit kratom. Within weeks of the last side effects going away, awakening will happen quickly.

Also via Chris Langan. I now have a PERSONAL connection with God.

My path to stream entry, now involves all three motivations. 1. One's own suffering. 2. The seeking of truth (studying consciousness for fun). And 3. "Devotion", or the love of god, life, the path and dharma. And literally anything.
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Chris M, modified 4 Months ago at 2/22/24 7:45 AM
Created 4 Months ago at 2/22/24 7:45 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Stay in touch, and keep us in your information loop!
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 4 Months ago at 2/22/24 11:07 AM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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On break again. 

... 

Thanks Chris. And I will.

...

On the personal relationship with God thing. That's what got me to this point.

I realized God doesn't have to be this mysterious alien construct thing. And I really SHOULD have a personal relationship with "it". Even there. I'm trying to transition to saying "him". Idk. Whatever works. 

Back to my old young hippie days after my A&P. I liked and embraced the idea of cosmic love. 

Basically the thing is, this is it. Eyes closed laying down at night. Light behind eye lids. 1st person experience of being an Alive sentient consciousness and body. The light Is God. My sentience is God. I felt alive. And I felt knowing. It's not complicated. My mind and intelligence is the guy. It's just a form of it. But this is only like week two of experimenting with the personal relationship with god. I know it will progress.

At one point I prayed to god and said "please help me quit kratom". Then the next day I was taking steps to quit. 

Oh also the idea of quitting had given me so much confidence. Both to enter the stream. And to fix my life. Etc.

I have a work drama update too lateremoticon
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 3 Months ago at 2/29/24 4:50 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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This is post is going to have more story content, because it's magical. Not even in the "magick" sense. Just the beauty of life. But also magick with a k, I suppose.

Work - So as it turns out, my supervisor never filed the paper work. My supervisor is like this blue colar dude from New York, a pool player, comes in swearing like a sailor, reaking of booze the next day (he plays pool at night at the bar). God love him. I was meant to meet this man. He reminds me of my brother (heroin using, gourmet chef, convict, FBI raided brother(deceased)). My friend said "It's crazy, there is never a supervsor like that". Also one day I saw a buddha statue in his car and the bhagavad gita. He's Indian. I didn't bring any of this up because it's like, it's part of his culture he grew up with. And for me it's spiritual tech. Nonetheless, auspicious. Anywho... He didn't file the paperwork to protect me. And I told him I'm worried that if I transfer, he will get in trouble. But he's like "fuck it, I can't get in trouble, I'm leavng soon." The last two days have been confusing. I told my friend what was asked of me and what was going on and she's like "wow thats confusing. So what are you supposed to do?" I didn't know. My supervisor is a great and crazy human, but he sent me on a crazy goose chase. I told my friend it's like a crazy DMT carvinal trip, all up in my face. But after 5 phone calls, in two days, to three different people, it's out of my hands now. I figured out what to do and say and the deed is done. I should be able to transfer after my supervisor talks to the "recruting" department.

God damn kratom addiciton - Welp. I've ordered a microdose formulation of an alleged substance from nature that effects addiciton and the opioid system. It's supposed to freshen and heal my fucked with, endorphoin receptors. (and nicotine, hello noortopic nictoine!) The nicotine is just a bonus, I used it like caffeine. Anyway, I take 4-6 sprays each day, 3-5 days a week. It has reverse tolerance to some extend, but also, I don't want to build up a tolerance, paradoxically. I've never experienced reverse tolerance with any substance, so I doubt the former. Anyway, it does indeed feel like it's working. I've been smiling a lot, as an inadvertant meditative practice, at work. I have a crush on this hippie girl online who sells "ceremonial cacao". I got some some pragmatic hardcore meditator in me, and I also got some sterotypical new-age adjacent, hippie in me. I copy her smiling, unconsciously. I theorize it's not a dopamine chase type smile. but a spiritual one. Whatever the fuck that means. This last part is kind of embarassing but it's real, and relevant. It's dharma transmission through some random person. But also it's a positive symptom of the changes in my system by virtue of the herb.

It's too early to make any sweeping conclusions on this front, but it's a good sign. My plan is to get 10 grams of the raw bark, and use 5 grams over like 3 days. This will be enough to reset my tolerance. If needed, I will do a second session. With my new job, all I have to do is take 2 days off and I get a whole 7 days off in a row. And Other times you just get 5 days off randomly. Ill take one day to "detox", no kratom. Take a sleeping pill. Then days 2 - 4 I'll take small doses of iboga bark.

I've quit kratom at least two times, since I started. One for three months. And I used naltrexone to speed up the detox. But my consumption has increased many times. And I just don't want to do it again. And it's not conducive with work. And why would I even do that when their is another option? Also, it saves the months of recovery afterwords. I would like nature, exogenous nature, to clean and heal my system. I really don't think I'm damaged or dirty, in any way. I've never been afraid of physical toxicity of kratom. I even assume it has secondary physical benefits. Speaken lilke a true hippie. That's not to  say  I don't abuse it. I sure have. If I used 1/3 of the ammount I used, then it wouldn't be as bad. But I have taken more than is needed. It did, however, act as a safe anxyolitic. It helped me learn to socialize in college. And helped on the job. Ok, misson accomplished. TIme to quit. 

Part of the process is to record my dosages, and taper. None of this is set in stone, but I do have my intention. If I can do it with just the microdoses, I'll do it that way. But I may still do the "small" doses, later.

Meditation - Yes, it's going good. Not much to report. But as I've said above, it's extremely promissing. I have noticed I'm getting more into those aformentioned meditative states, at work, more effortlessly. With the new smiling phenomenon added. It's only been 1 week since I got the stuff, and I've only taken it 4 and a half days. Things should improve. Also, my dreams have been insane. But this goes back like 3 or 4 weeks. I have a somwhat subconscious intention to work with dreams, and remember them more. It seems like it's working. 

Also I haven't had any major upwellings of my "personal relationship with god". But it's another facet to work on. 

Apaulling Synchronicity - As Ram Dass said. I ordered "Advanced Magic for Begginners". Why? IDK, it's a classic in these circles, and I figured I ought to get it. And see wat's up. So last night I got it, in the mail, direct order from Aeon publishing. Normally I order Amazon but said fuck it. So I'm stairing at this cover, sort of subconsciously contemplating the pineapple grenade. My mind didn't directly say this, but infered it "I wonder if there is a synchronicity with this pineapple grenade?". Another way of putting it, is that I was thinking symbolically. Like "I wonder what in the univerese, this pineapple grenade is, wat's the symbolism?"... etc, etc.

Ok, so fucking today, at work, we are set up at a POLICE FORESICS LAB. Of all places. That's what I like about the blood mobiles, we go to all these places that are weird as shit, and cool. So I noticed in the halls all kinds of cool shit. This one cabinet with interesting chemistry nik naks, some thing about gene transferase, and PCR tests. Another guy has a sticker that says "I love guns" or some shit. But that same office door, there is a little platform attacted to the wall. And on that platform is, I shit you not, a god damn PINEAPPLE grenade that says "Complaint department, please take a number" And arrow pointing at the fucking pineapple grenade with a "#1" on the detonating pin. I've intentionally called it specifically a "pineapple" grenade, before it every time, for comedic reasons. It's mildly pleasing to me. I'll try to add the photo.

Look, idk what it means. But it all makes me feel safe, loved and happy. And confident we got this. Or I'm going in the right direction, as of late.

I made a wish about January 2023 that "23" will be the year I fix my life. Well, apparenly it's hitting now, maybe. Also I was born on the year of the goat. And am a taurus if it's relevent. Both cloven hooved demon aminals. A basic google search says that year of the goats will do alright this year, so we will see. We will see. 
Martin, modified 3 Months ago at 3/1/24 12:11 PM
Created 3 Months ago at 3/1/24 12:11 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 886 Join Date: 4/25/20 Recent Posts
Keep in mind that addiction recovery groups work for many people. They worked for me. A lot of people like the 12-step model, and it is usually really accessible for people who have a personal relationship with God. Other good options are Lifering, which works well for people who find the 12-step model overly religious, and SMART Recovery, which, although they don't consciously know it, is remarkably Buddhist. 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 3 Months ago at 2/29/24 4:56 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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​​​​​​​
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 3 Months ago at 2/29/24 5:21 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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If scrolling all the way down and immeditaely seeing a giant pineapple grenade is a little jarring, it's not just because I like pineapple grenades, it's because I suck at forum post editing. It's part of the previous post.
shargrol, modified 3 Months ago at 2/29/24 5:31 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Might be time to contact your HGA emoticon
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 3 Months ago at 3/2/24 4:28 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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shargrol
Might be time to contact your HGA emoticon
I was laughing loudly when I read this at the time. It's the perfect response! It made me pick up the book on a random thursday night. It's remarkable how pertinant the stuff in the book is. Also, it says to make a magic journal. Coincidentally I bought three journals for meditation, etc, the week before.

Yeah, time to contact the holy guardian angel, lol
‎ ‎Nihila, modified 3 Months ago at 2/29/24 5:52 PM
Created 3 Months ago at 2/29/24 5:52 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Best of luck with the withdrawal. I first came across it back in 2009 and was surprised by the similarities to heavier opiates, it's no joke.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 3 Months ago at 3/2/24 4:32 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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@nihila Thanks. You and shargrol replied almost immediately after. Sometimes the social aspects of this, I'm scared to share sometimes. But the immediate support was super helpful for this suffering human being at the time.

​​​​​​​@martin Thanks for the support also.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 3 Months ago at 3/9/24 1:15 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
It's been over a week since the pineapple grenade synchonictiy and it has faded. But objectively it was one of the most insane synchonicities ever. Subjectively though, it wasn't that a big a deal, on an emotional level. But again, the main take away is keep going. Contact ur gaurdian angel. Keep meditating. Keep working with god. Almost a cosmic "atta boy" from space daddy. I already have a healthy ammount of "faith", but this doesn't hurt. It's a good reminder from early practice, after the initial washing out of doubt, after the A&P event. This is a reminder to read the "wisdom" chapters, on the five spiritual faculties.

Ok, let's talk meditation. One thing that I "take for granted", in a positve/neutral way is that I don't make a distinction between "concentration" and "insight". I mean pragmatically speaking. Pragmatically I know I'm laying the ground work for both. I only set out to do three things. 1. Releive suffering. 2. Study consciousness and 3. A holy/sacred reverance for existince. Prayer through being. In that order from most to least. This part is a reminder to re-read my highlights from The Mind Illuminated

Practice wise I have noticed the trend lately to be more in the moment, or possibly "do-nothing" meditation, rather than goal oriented. To get even more specific I've noticed this sort of "calm" wash over me, as I notice the visual snow im my visual center, or notice the entire field. I.E. Instantaneously noticing a visual and/or spacial object -> which leads to calming - > which leads to a brief non-dual perception. Meaning the objects are just what they are. And maybe the narrative-mind stops for a bit, and I'm just "in the moment". It's very peaceful and calm. This phenomenon happens ramdonly, ocassionally, at work. When nothing is happening, and I'm standing or sitting there looking at a spot.

Of course, this isn't anything new. And i've seen this, and hundreds of different forms of it, throughout my practice. However it's another trend. And it fits in to the 3 intentions. Specifically through intention #2 "to study consciousness". Because I find myself later, taking this to the cushion. Specifically the "calming" part. 

Now segweying to on the cushion practice as of late. And rerouting the exact same experience through the "first intention", "alleviating suffering.

One thing that may happen is it gets all calm, and I get either bored, or agitated, or any manner of reactions. Or let's say I sit down, and am pissed off with the entire paradigm of "trying to get somewhere" or "attain stream entry", which is tangentially related to "note everything". The noting practice in this  paradigm offends my sense of intelligence. For instance, say I sit down and notice consciousness, my body, the phenomenon within, I internally move towards noting. I may or may not start noting things. But here's the punchline. I go "are you fucking serious? You want me to note, "vision", "touch of cloth".... etc etc.... esentially any obvious physical sensations. It's like "No fucking shit."  " I know I feel my body, how god damn obvious can it be". I feel like it's such a waste to invest so much bandwidth and attention into all this obvious stuff.

 But this is the REAL punchline. I suddenly get a beautiful synthesis of a form of noting + choiceless awareness + a whole field equanimity type of expetience. And also, this is the main thing, a deep understanding of the dukkha characteristic. Because that is what is causing this whole process. Years of trying to "get SE". Years of paying attention. Maybe 10% of my bandwidth collectively invested in the "noting" technique.

Well suddenly its a reworking of all bandwidth. A reworking of all my strengths and weaknesses, to give me the most powerful use of resources, in the moment.

An example of the phenomenology would be like, I sit down. I suddenly become vividly aware of reality. There is a knowing of what things I'm noticing and how much intenstiy, or lackthereof. There will be a certain reconfiguration, where attention will get concentrationy. The body as object, will be hone in one. Vision and hearing. And an integration of those. A certain checking in with so called "attention phase harmony". But here's where the notes come it. So far the physical stuff will be matter-of-factly presenting. Then the more ephemeral stuff will be noted. 

It saves so much exhaustion over silly noting. Like, I will note/notice thoughts. I'll notice how the body feels, simultaneously while I note the thought occuring in that same moment. Just as important and core, I will notice the fundamental substance of dukkha, behind all this, and animating it all. The dukkha being what shargrol calls "pre-emotions" or "Urges". IDK, I don't really label it. I just feel it. If the 3cs are connected, it's a huge and powerful force, just like the obvious lack of a self inside the light-filled head (or darkness, when eyes are closed). It really helps practice. It cuts through everything.

So far, at this level, the main things I note are thoughts, and emtions, and "core-processes", to a lesser extent, and in that decending order. The neat thing is that the "dukkha" (the C), isn't noted. It's just there inside all this stuff. Very important. It's also extremely relevant I've been able to use this as a spring board at work. It's pretty natural for me to notice the whispy thought, inside the big physical body, walking around. I'll note it sometimes too. But when at work, I usually don't note it.

Working with the "room" could be a whole other post. But I have't had any breakthroughs here, in this same regard described above. 

One former skill I need to remember/bring to the cushion/bring to walking around life, is simply feeling the body. But as of the time I'm writing this post, I've already begun doing this, for weeks. It's funny how all these techniques swirl around, come and go. But some things, eventually just become hard wired skills. Second nature. Feeling the body (enteroception) hasn't become necessarily hard wired yet. But after realizing I had used to do this consistenly as a core practice, and it wanned, I had realized it is indeed second nature. Like if you learned piano, get good. And forget to practice for a while. You may jump back in at your leisure. This paragraph here, take it with a grain of salt. I'm doing my best to explain it in english. To describe my own consciousness and experience. With my current level of consciousness, memory, while doing a dozen other things to survive in the physical world. This last paragraph is a detour, and isn't really necessarily about the tehcnique, or lackthereof. It's about the entire process.

For instance. I think I got so good at noticing the "no-self" characteristic, walking around. That it would be my default go to "destressor". Whearas it used to just be "feeling the body". Feeling the body, whether there just happene to bense of self or not, in that given moment. But it's really nice because I'll naturally waffle around with these difference techniques. Moved by the primary intention, #1, to alleviate suffering. So overwhelmed with stress and anxiety, the body/mind does it's best to just help this human-animal navigate living in an imperfect environment.

 The take away here, is I'll slowly learn to do more and more of these things at a deeper, unconscious, or built-in level. Obviously stream entry would sort of set a lot of these things in. And later paths. The second take away is I can learn to do these things consciously. I can pick to do "feel the body" meditaiton. If I'm doing that good, I can simultaneously incorporate feeling like I don't have a self, inside the head. If it helps. I could also just thing the magic words "ok, be in a flow state". And suddenly, I'm whipping together all the equipment I need at work, in a fun playful, and automatic way. There s overelap between all these things, and more. I could also harken back to the start of this post. Being in a non-dual state. Where primordial child consciousness is just there. It's quiet. It's god looking through my eyes. Just a caveat, this last one, I know the least about. But I can tell how simple it is, at the same time.

I know at the start I equated the "calm" thing with the "no-dual" thing. They are similar and have overlap. But I think what I was describing, at work, is getting into an automatic calm, concentration state. But I'm still working all this out.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 3/31/24 6:41 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Continuing to practice with the ebbs and flows of life. A couple weeks was poor, due to lack of sleep. My sleep is way better now that the kratom-tolerance spray is working. It's making life, a lot better. Not a permantant fix yet.

I realized how important the magic journal is, because I forgot a synchonicty. I wrote it down and when I reread it, I was like "WTF?". Apparently I had a bunch of dreams about my dead brother. I don't remember them. But I DO remeber psuedo randomly playing classical music from youtube, and Moonlight Sonata came up. Me and my brother were laughing because he told me he would listen to it when he was super depressed and wanted to use heroin. We had/ve a dark sense of humor. It was inspired by the scariest movie, ive ever seen. Requiem for a Dream. Another synchronicty, to days ago. I was listening to Angelo DiLullo and I heard this crazy bird sound on break at work. Then as soon as Angello says the phrase "sound of a bird", the Blue Jay, it turned out, jumped nexted to my car on a branch continuing the song. o.O

God Type shit: This goes hand in hand with "contacting my HGA" It goes hand in hand with Desire for Deliverance, and Equanimity. I realize I can't do it anymore. It's a personal relationship with god thanks to that one dude with a high IQ, Chris Langlan.

One thing I keep falling back on is back to basics. Just broadly feeling the body. It helps build concentration. And all the other neat gifts and "tricks" fall in place. Durig different days and times, I can work my way up the heiarchy and do other techniques.

Real World Horrors:

I think my purpose is to help take back the world from psychopaths. So regular humans can walk the earth in peace. It's not gonna be easy though. This will be a harder life than to grow up in the 1960s or 50s, but it will be well worth it. Sort of like WW2 and post WW2.

So yes. God isn't just for meditation practice, and suffering. It's really the only fundamental solution I have to bearing the weight of having to start my life, in this really fucking weird, and epic time of transtion. The top two weirdest curve balls are, UFOs and AI. The top most difficult part is general econmic-fuckery, we have to deal with.

The main thing is I know god is here, through mystical experience. Through all these weird synchonicities. It's guiding my life. And it's guding me to stream entry. It's essentially the antitode to everythinng. Which is why it's relevant to bring up A. the stress of 21st century and B. The solution to sit. If he can guide my life, he can guide certain people and things into the right places, at the right time, to make sure, whatever is supposed to happen, will. Or something like that. 

Meditation and phenomenology: It's good practice for me to bust out my laptop and reread the shargrol page. (Or load up an ebook). I did this for like 90 minutes then did a sit... I want to flesh out how I said "silly noting", in a recent former post. The silly thing was sitting down and noting seemingly dumb stuff, that's pretty god damn obvious. Meanwhile I could just sit down and jump straight to concentraiton. But that wasn't how I learned originally. Well in the the last few weeks I learned that, and learned it well. I can, and should, just sit down and jump to concentration on physical sensations with clairty and ease...

Well rereading the shargrol compilation page, I decided it's time to reboot noting, and reboot it well. Now I have the confidence that I can,  and will see, these matter of fract sensations. I decided it's optional to note them. Where practice has developed as of late, maybe the last 4 months, since at least November 2023, i've began to excell at noticing thoughts as objects. Thanks to sort of nonchalantly learning how to do this any and everywhere. Especially at work. I bring this up, because the next piece of the puzzle is feelings. Gross feelings. But also and especially; craving, aversion and indiference. I.E. one facet of the three C's, Dukkha. emoticon 

So that's what I did this sit. It was the first time I intentionally sat down with noting as being the major technique, in weeks. Or even months. But also the last like 3 or 4 weeks I've really developed this experience of, really this is it. I can't do it. The only thing to do, is just notice what's happening now. Combining that with this noting was powerful.

Cutting Edge: At least Early Mastery,  if Not "High Mastery". Basically I went into a more open, and free and peaceful body/mind. Noticing everything became very easy. There were two distinct stages after that. As things were ramping up, I began to feel the huge fear stage. Both fear of awakening. And fear of the slipperiness, and fear of "going mad" (going mad is a metaphor for me, becasue I'm not actually afraid of that. Psychedelics were WAAAY scarier). Nonetheless it's definitely some fear of something related to something fundamental about the operation and control of my mind. But what it is, I have no idea. In terms of actual (the quality of) equanimity, I reached a new level at this sub-nyana. Meaning I was able to be ok, with being in the present without mapping, or without desiring nibbana*.

I can't remember how dreamy things were by then. But I progressively went into a far dreamier phaze. I remember seeing these branching structures that reminded me of DNA, or giant subterrainian trees. The atoms they were made out of were visible. They looked like thise ball-atom models. I kept seeing variations of this for like 5 subjective minutes. Interestingly, a DNA, double helix synchronicity WAS my A&P event. Way back ah' when. 

* But by now I felt slightly more pressure, or some slight more tension, regarding nibbana. Not so much the desiring of it, but the fear of "blowing" it. Like: "Make sure you meditate right. You don't want to fuck up stream entry, that you could get, this sit. But the positive thing, besides having mindfulness of it, was that this sort of pressure is exponentially less than times prior. I can see all this stuff building in a healthy way, towards, what I'm trying to do.

If I had to map where I was in fractal terminology. It would be just before High-EQ. Maybe EQ.EQ.ReObservation. emoticon IDK. Obviously the fractal nyanas thing is a huge guess for me. I'm still a DN yogi. emoticon

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I think the main uniquely significant thing about this post, is the overall meta-development, combined with the actual "Cutting-edge" on the POI map.

Like, I'm obviously learning the skills of attention, clairty, concentration and mindfulness. It's really helping my life. But this was the first time I got to EQ on cushion (strongly), since this lateset section of practice. It's the convergence of mature development + the highest possible nyana (Almost!).

So-Close! emoticon There were some parts of that sit that may have seemed like a "near miss". IDK, doesn't matter. But it's all very neat, and promising, and heartful. emoticon <3
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/16/24 6:12 PM
Created 2 Months ago at 4/16/24 5:56 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Strangely I had another insanely significant day. It rivals leap year, when I had that pineapple grenade shit.... 

I don't know what I want to write about it. But I'm going to plop this Down here. I want to get something in my log. While it's still recent. I'm still contemplating what happened. O.O


Basically my supervisor fucked up, and was panicking. And I went on a wild adventure to fix it... we do our annual assessments online. But both he and I forgot about it. If I failed, it would be terrible. Literally terrible.

This is a quick synopsis since so much shit happend that week. Smh. This was from April fools day, where I fucked up another thing. To thursday, where we had a meeting with guest speakers. A little girl, cancer survivor taught us a mediation technique. Very precious and auspicious to me. Very greatful. So much more shit happened that day. One of the best and worst day...

But it only got better and more worse. I worked Sunday, and it culminated on April 8th. When my supervisor was panicking. It started off as the worst day of my entire career.

But I ended up at this place, and of all fucking days a god damn solar eclipse was burning across North America. I could see it, 95%. Me and my supervisor were pouring over my computer as I took the test, with the attention and pressure of defusing a bomb. See. If I got it wrong, all the blood from Sunday would be destroyed. (Blood donations, my job). Also a terrifying possibility my friend of a supervisor would be fired.
It went from the single worst day. To the single greatest day. I'd never want to do that again but I was glad I did it.

Also. I was sad I didn't think to travel south to see the full  thing. However I would not have experienced this crazy thing, if it played out otherwise. I call it the April 8th trail by fire. I'm greatful to have lived it.  

It made me feel like I can do anything. I felt like I had a choir of angels on my side. All they asked is I fight like hell. Full, massive forced effort. And careful meticulous overwhelming attention. It was fucked. Needless to say, I did it. Me and him were so relived. Quite a triumphant moment

I was truamatized for a few days though.


I watched Dune Part 2 and was shocked how much the story resonated with that day. Way more than lord of the rings. But really, it resonated on a deep level. One of the best movie watches ever. Insane goose bumps. And shockingly there is a total explipse in the movie. You saw the moons shadow from space. And I was like WTF. But on the planet it shows a flash of a total eclipse. I literally said out loud to myself "... you've GOT to be shitting me".
​​​​​​​
At this point as this day fades I want to remember how I am asked to just be very careful. Just keep my wits about me. I may enjoy acting like a fool, but as Bernardo Kastrup says, we don't live our lives for ourselves. It's for other people. I have to keep leading this journey till the day I die.
hopefully the awakening process will help make it a bit easier by many measures
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/16/24 6:32 PM
Created 2 Months ago at 4/16/24 5:59 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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​​​​​​​photo cred my mom, Indiana... Related to last post.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/16/24 6:13 PM
Created 2 Months ago at 4/16/24 6:07 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Ok, now I got that shit out of the way I have a new development in Practice. A big one. A small one though. A small big one. What it is, is essentially getting what I needed out of Angelo DiLullo, out of another source. Daniel's friend Loch Kelly.

Daniel is practically a walking advertisement for him. My Brain daily says "Shift into freedom by my friend loch kelly", in Daniel's voice. The advertisement worked...

Basically what I get out of it, is really just being basic open, conceptless awareness. Ive had glimpses of it before but I've never really done it this much.

But now it's like I can do it daily. And the key is "effortless mindfulness". Like it's really no problem. I still have vipassana. I still have sits where I work up to the 4th vipassana-jhana and it's crazy. But now I'm going direct.

The way Loch and Michael Taft describe this makes it seem like a new thing parallel to vipassana and the path to stream entry. Map wise IDK whats true but it doesnt matter. The thing that matters is this bypasses the problem entirely.

Its better I say less about it. The masters speak of it well anyway.

But I will describe it.

Like, I sit there and its like primordial awareness. Like just a sentient being, basking in being.

It really is a lot like the 4th vipassana jhana but also different.

It's really interesting and fun. Also vulnerable. It feels like it threatens and is scary to a part of myself. Which is a decscription Loch says literally. It reminds me of the place in the 11th ñana where you fear going mad. Its like that. But its also super easy. No pressure. 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/16/24 11:12 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Techniques:

vipassana-
●Sitting on a cushion and noting. With the right posture and persistent noting. Adjusting amount of noting, as needed. Relaxing as much as possible. This rockets me to solid EQ vipassana-jhana, if I can do it right.

●Doing the same cross legged on couch. This doesn't rocket me, but similar territory. A bit more sustainable, but I've got to this territory with more frequency sitting on the literal cushion.

​​NON-DUAL
●Awake, non-conceptual awareness. Usually sitting on the couch cross legged, eyes open. For short bursts. Not even timed. 

concentration-
●Feel the body. I'm pretty sure this is just concentration/centering mediation, however I intended it to be vipassana, but over time I learned shamatha, light, no absorptions yet. 

-Work
● Walking or moving effortless flow state. Feel the body 
●Do the above but drop conceptual awareness 
-Which makes effortless, awake awareness again. Primordial. It feels so good to do at work. I maybe did one super good hit, as I was walking outside. Just alive intelligent recognition of itself

Prayer
●This one is creative. Ive only ever winged it. But I'm beloved and humble with how the awake/non-dual thing works with this. Prayer for me is just immediate interface with present intelligent reality,  which is alive. So by default its going to be trying to have bright awareness. However doing loch kelly type effortless mindfulness of awareness, makes it better

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

It feels good to be back to basics and just be really organized with breaking practice down to a handful of techniques I just happen to regularly do and have them written down concisely in one spot. I could keep going on and on about prayer. TwoJust pure being, I've always wanted. I don't know. Like God knowing itself through floating in existence, retaking an infinite amount of forms. I'm not tripping or anything but it feels like that. It also feels like being happy again, like when I was for the 18 months of my life, after high school, pre-A&P. I associate it with wonder and mystery. Researching reality, God, time, universe. I feel scholarly. Like a philosopher.
I know I've veered off phenomenolgy pretty hard core. It's more poetic. But it does feel like that. It's effortless. Just shining awareness. Alive. It's beyond me. Beyond process. It's just this normal, natural psychedelic god mind that has always been there. Except it's aware it's being staired at. The consciousness of a one year old, but with the benefits of being an adult. But I connect with the god description so much more.Just pure being, I've always wanted. I don't know. Like God knowing itself through floating in existence, retaking an infinite amount of forms. I'm not tripping or anything but it feels like that. It also feels like being happy again, like when I was for the 18 months of my life, after high school, pre-A&P. I associate it with wonder and mystery. Researching reality, God, time, universe. I feel scholarly. Like a philosopher.
I know I've veered off phenomenolgy pretty hard core. It's more poetic. But it does feel like that. It's effortless. Just shining awareness. Alive. It's beyond me. Beyond process. It's just this normal, natural psychedelic god mind that has always been there. Except it's aware it's being staired at. The consciousness of a one year old, but with the benefits of being an adult. But I connect with the god description so much more.

three take aways:

1. The first take away is that I have indeed been able to successfully work with this God thing in a wholesome, tactical and healing way.

2. The second is the whole non-conceptual awareness thing... All it takes is one super good hit for 10 seconds walking ONE time, my entire day. It sticks out. Just keep doing it and I'll get more used to it. It's already complete and used to itself, to itself. But the part that is getting used to it, is the "ego". I'm quite enjoying the idea of different parts of ourselves that have internal minds. So when that type of moment happens, it can feel a little odd, vulnerable or uncomfortable. But just to one small part.

3. One neat thing is this new way to experience is beyond process. So I've escapes the progress trap, that pragmatic insight stages makes me susceptible to. I'm a little embarrassed much of a non-dual youtuber I sound like. A lot of these cliches are true. I already knew it. But now I'm getting effortless tastes multiple times a day now. 

Abiding in natural, awake, alive intelligence, bright consciousness without concepts. It is an end in itself. And there is no more battle. This is like the main thing I'd remind myself from this exercise on organizing techniques. Its important to rewire my brain so I don't so obsessively crave stream entry.

When it gets deeper, I have even thought. "What do I need stream entry for?" ... It literally seems like it solves the problem i think stream entry should.

---^^^^^^^------^^^^^^^-------^^^^^^------

Just pure being, I've always wanted. I don't know. Like God knowing itself through floating in existence, retaking an infinite amount of forms. I'm not tripping or anything but it feels like that. It also feels like being happy again, like when I was for the 18 months of my life, after high school, pre-A&P. I associate it with wonder and mystery. Researching reality, God, time, universe. I feel scholarly. Like a philosopher.

I know I've veered off phenomenolgy pretty hard core. It's more poetic. But it does feel like that. It's effortless. Just shining awareness. Alive. It's beyond me. Beyond process. It's just this normal, natural psychedelic god mind that has always been there. Except it's aware it's being staired at. The consciousness of a one year old, but with the benefits of being an adult. But I connect with the god description so much more.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/17/24 9:48 AM
Created 2 Months ago at 4/17/24 9:48 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I posted a lot the last 12 hours but I remembered one more track I'm on, specifically with prayer. 

It's like desire for deliverance inspired prayer. I get super hyped up, I feel like my soul completely bows to nature, and expresses submission to this force in the universe.

I think of big God, as nature. It's working with and interacting with me, the way your body grows and dies, and energy flows through the planet and solar system. I pray to that. I don't think it can actually "hear" me.

A "personal" relationship with God might be more like the HGA. I don't know. But something  intelligent is listening.

either way I don't really break it down that way usually when I'm doing it.

I pray that we will right this ship.

I pray that I can help out 

I pray that It guides me to stream entry, but that's part of praying that I be of service.

I was praying for help with the test I did at work. "Please, dont let me fail". I remeber at least once doing that eyes closed for like 30 seconds when no one was looking.

I got a lot more work to do on other fronts. If I want to make shit happen, I got a lot of work to do. But I got God on my side. And I got primordial awake awareness available when needed, for 1 to 10 seconds at random 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/20/24 6:54 PM
Created 2 Months ago at 4/20/24 6:54 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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I've got a comment back log I'm not used to. I'm greatful to everyone who commented. Ive actually gained a lot of insight lately from my two inquiry threads.

Ive actually made ground on working with the sensations if being overworked, sleep deprived, or worse. It has to do with identiy view. Which segways me into the main thing I want to share right now 

So I've been reflecting on the fact that im starting to feel pretty gradually awakened. No SE yet. But it's pretty god damn easy to look in the mirror and say " I have arrived".

Its easy any time, especially if I am alone, as long as I have enough concentration.

It's just more apparent in the mirror. I'm used to walking around feeling the quality of non-self.

I definitely attribute the initial speed I gained insight into non-self, to reading about psychedelics. In psychonaut literature they call it "ego-death" which is made out of non-self but also goes further into psychology and also into fantasy and takes you on a space opera inside God's mind, to the edges of infinity and eternity. It's terrifying.

I never went that far. But being initiated with that stuff and many medium to low doses possibly primed me. Since then I've slowly learned the impermanence characteristic. And slowlier learned dukkha.

That's why it's important I enter the stream. Dukkha. It seems I already (quite weirdly) have decent insight into identity view. I've always been able to slip into an, at least brief, non-self state.

I think in the last few years I've worked with it on a technical level but also psychological. As in, let myself be taken over by it, and even creeped out, so I get more used to it. My mini-me's (different selves, minds, Internal family systems) eventually are all cool with it.

Surviving a few horrible large dose psychedelics helps too. Nothing about the POI was fundamentally creepy to me. The ends of God's mind are. Heavy dose psychedelics are. The POI is like a small dose psychedelic in comparison. (By the POI. I mean my experience from ñana 1, all the way to almost high EQ)

So basically anytime I want I can tune into this quality. Big emphasis on bascially. And the amount of suffering it alleviates is unknown to me.

I assume stream entry will lock it in, and more....

This idea is sort of parallel with and a part of the whole, like "non-dual" mediation thing. Like where I get into a brief mode that it's just a cloud of consciousness without concepts. I wonder if my recent efforts with that have helped this non-self, identity-view thing.

The neat thing is that both of these "techniques" (in quotes because when it's truly effortless, it feels like it should be in quotes) are effortless.

When I'm sick of meditation or long sits, I can force myself to recline on the couch and switch to it. Looking out at the room in restful silence. Then it doesn't matter how much I would like to, or would NOT like to meditate. It's just this.

Also, I do it a lot walking around.

I learned from somewhere that if transcendent awareness is making you ungrounded or spiritual bypassing, all you do is feel your body. <- this sentence is a thrown in. It's almost never relevant for me yet, being a beginner 

At this point I feel like it's accurate to call me an advanced beginner.

Upon reflecting, I think of the two techniques, non-dual is a lot more grounding. IDK what it is, as they seem similar. I wonder if the difference is very subtle psychological differences or slightly adjusting the leavers of perceptual parameters.

The thing is the non-conceptual thing makes me feel more primordial and closer to god.

I'm also starting to confuse myself. I'm questioning if they are the same state. It's cool though. Whatever works. 

I'm opting for non-dual then. Idk
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/21/24 9:41 PM
Created 2 Months ago at 4/21/24 9:37 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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420 + 1. April 21st, 2024. Year of the goat. ● So today I started off with going to the gym. I sat in the parking lot a good 20 minutes listening to a dharma talk. Sort of practicing while I listened. The. Did a actual sit, in the driver's seat, legs folded, at least another 20m eyes open.

My method is pretty low effort. I do this sort of selflessness open field type shit. Ocassionally dipping into non-conceptual primordial awareness for a hot second.

- I also did this on my way to the gym and on my way home.

-I also did it in the gym when possible. I usually turn the gym into a mediation/dharma podcast session.

-When I do the exercises or stretch I deeply feel the body. The body as object. Also the space in the room to some extent. Also kinestheticly. The motion of the body as object. It makes for a fascinating object. The challenge of the gym is being around other sentient minds. It fucks with the mediation, but I'm used to it. It's obviously a cutting edge to work with. : )

I think the key here is low effort.

From shargrols post-DN/pre-SE advice. "Drop effort almost down to zero"

I'm getting pretty lazy about talking about the "non-dual" "non-conceptual primordial awareness" state. And/or the no-self state. But one quality is effortlessness. Its sort of a get out of jail free card for the burnout, and motivation or lack thereof.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/23/24 8:16 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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My Entire World Is Pulling Me

I heard about this thing. And its almost cliché. Sort of giving your life and world over to awakening.

Meaning that you sort of give it to the process itself. You let it take over. You die into it.

There is no one source that I've found that explains my exact path. Because on top of that there is an element of the entire universe being life. And being God. And a greater intelligence.

It wouldn't be the same in a dead atheistic universe. If it was just the POI. If it was just an intuitive process of my brain waking up. It's both, that, and God. And perhaps some metaphor for the greater universe of cycles of death and rebirth.

I didn't quite find this in MCTB. I heard about giving your life over to this from Angello DiLullos work. 

But his work didnt quite talk about my experience with this alive, intelligent, thing. ?

Chris Langan turned me onto the idea of a personal God. He has no experience with awakening. 

Contacting your holy gaurdian angel seems to be what this business is. But I haven't read anything about it. I just heard about it 

All of the above applies.

It's been my lifeline. I feel it helping me in daily life. Any time I would have panicked before, there is this assurance. This warm healing force. This deep prayer and meditation that, things are to be ok. It's in my hands.

All that is asked, is that I just relax and remember it, every time I would tend to freak out.

Just relax and die to it. Just let it be. Let it flow through me.

it's exhausting talking about the phenomenolgy of meditation but I like it 

Maybe later in the path I'll be able to talk about this god-business in more accurate detail. Right now I'm keeping it simple.

It's soul purpose is to simply make the world a better place. To help me. And to guide me to awakening.

Currently it's teachinteaching to be equinamous. When I'm at work, it teaches me to interact with people in a wiser, better way.

Sometimes I will do that hippie thing and try to see other people as God. It actually works.

​​​​​​​We'll see.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/23/24 8:36 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Nothing Inside My Head I forgot to say, when talking about that God business, that what it all comes down to is consciousness. Leading my whole life as a human, and suddenly being here, these last few years, practicing. Working on this thing. Where there is this apparent lack of self inside my head.

There is also this peacefulness and quietness that comes from being in a non-conceptual non dual state, where it sort of feels like looking out if God's eyes.  either way, it's this extremely insane, real and intimate thing of knowing something is up.

There obviously isn't thing thing inside my head that I thought was there, most of my adult life. Something  is up with it. I don't know what is up. Except what I see, when I see it. But there is some shit going on, that I dont know, that I need to find out. Stream entry obviously.

​​​​​​​ But when I work with this shit it's a completely different approach than the way I was taught to feel upon initially discovering MCTB, and learning about the POI. No, it's the fact there is some shit going on in my head. It is what it is. It's nothing more. Nothing less. My entire life comes together on this single purpose. There is some conspiracy, with its focal point inside my face. And I'm going to get to the bottom of it 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 2 Months ago at 4/25/24 5:58 PM
Created 2 Months ago at 4/25/24 5:46 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Tuesday:

 A slow blood drive. Worked with the narcissist lady. Was nuts.

But besides her it was easy. We set up in a church lobby. I sat around and leisurely paced, abiding in a conceptless state of awareness. On my breaks I sat on a bench outside and enjoyed the weather. Slightly overcast in the humid way. But not thick clouds. Birds singing. Abided in conceptless awareness and peace of the little birds.

Wednesday:

Day off. Unfortunately a bit sleep deprived. Therefore forgone standard mediation. 

Regular concentration meditation in bed.

Thursday:

Vented about the narcissist with other staff. I know gossip ain't very Buddhist but she's the only person I vent about. Its our or self preservation rather than mother-fuckering her. We try to keep each other sane.

At Gardner White blood drive.

It's weird because we're in weird locations like that sometimes. We were busy as fuck. But on bathroom trips and during lulls, I took the time to space out and stare deeply into the big open space.

I hate commusmerist meccas but this job (and meditation) has made it ok. It's just more of reality to explore.

Right now I'm flirting with going outside to sit. But it's a bit too urban for my tatstes during peak hours... tonight more concentration in bed.

Over all this week is a bit mediation light.

But the recent development in the conceptless awareness thing I do, as well as contacting my HGA, is my life line. C:

Edit:

Oh yeah. I forgot to say how the inner nada sound, how it excells at forcing this state.... its CRAZY o.o
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 10:30 AM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 10:25 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Saturday Mediation:
The reason I'm posting this moment is to hold me accountable. I finally got enough sleep on a Friday night. I want to meditate two hours today. I'll report back later. So far I'm drinking tea watching a video with Frank Yang, Ingram, and more.

Edit: ah fuck, maybe clean my room first while I listen. Then sit. Mindfulness of body and ears while i clean and listen perhaps. 

Friday:

Regular life journal post.

Had another synchronicity. My coworkers organically found out its my birthday. And my favorite driver and favorite supervisor were there. They got me a card. And got us food. They ambushed me with a cake, and a song in public. Super embarassing. They said make a wish when I blew those candles out and I said the first line in my magic journal, in my mind. I want us all to be ok.

I don't really care about birthdays but I did cheech this one up due to the symbology of 33. The Jesus age.

I normally hate birthdays. But the training in morality take away is I need to find out my friends birthdays and keep track. Other people like birthdays a lot.
Bahiya Barklord, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 10:46 AM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Happy Birthday !!
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Bahiya Baby, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 10:50 AM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Happy Birthday also !! Apparently I have two accounts. Barklord is very... dubstep...
Martin, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 4:39 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Happy birthday! May you live three times as long as Jesus!
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 6:55 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 6:55 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Martin:
Happy birthday! May you live three times as long as Jesus!


Hahaha that would be fucking awesome. 99 baby. I want to see what it's like in 2090. Let's see.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 6:23 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Barklord haha inherently funny sounding word 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 6:23 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Thank you guys, thats very sweet of you all.

​​​​​​​Metta
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 6:54 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 6:54 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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First Sit

1hr10m, Sitting on Cushion (10 minutes laying down after)

Cutting Edge: Late EQ

Concentration: great

Techniques: vigorous strict noting. Open choicless awareness. Non-dual conceptless awareness.

New Insight: One of the oldest insights I've learned is flowing noting, where it sort of goes by itself, second after second. Automatically. But it all changed when I heard Daniel say "you can get it to run by itself".

Notice I said "sort of". It was the experience of it, back then, and it was hard fought. It took a lot of work to get there. And my levels of anxiety and relative lack of insight into anatta, kept me from doing it like I had realized as possible today.

The difference today is sort of combining maybe dzogeny or mahamudra-ey type mediation WITH noting. Like a very very gentle effortless scaffold BEHIND the noting, having to do with the observer, thing. 

Sit:

I started with the noting hardcore knob turned to high. My intention was to just keep doing it as appropriate.

This was the first Sit that tracked pretty closely with the POI, including staged 1 through 4. Broken into vipassana-jhanas 1 and 2.

I sat down and felt very peaceful. Calm. Ease. I kept going noting the 3 main sense gates. Eyes opened.

60 seconds in feelings of depression and hopelessness.

5 to 7 minutes in, weirdly, unmistakably A&P. I never track that. Giddy, joy. Optimism.

I zoomed in on the fine grain somatic vibrations. I wanted to feel the tingling.

From the start of the sit, on and off, I felt tired. I decided now to close my eyes.

At some point noting was dropped. Feelings of shame, guilt, fear. That sort of thing.

Later I did indeed get to gee "chunky" phase. I could feel things turning. Noting was brought back, after a few minutes.

It was at this point I entered the deeper EQ. In this phase I had the insight about auto-noting. 

●Sidebar. This is such a good insight because of my basic aversion to noting. It kind of makes it go away. The only time noting has to take extra effort is at the start perhaps. But mindfulness is automatic, so even that isn't true, so it seems. Another time where it could take extra effort is when I'm trying to use new or different vocabulary. But I can mix sessions so noting will never burn me out, anymore.

Back to the session.

At some point I was getting iritated and it behoove me to work with resistance. Just feel it. There was some recall, that the whole point of all this is the actual quality of equanimity. So I just felt the resistance and was ok with it. This is when I dropped noting again.

The resistance went away. This was clear slippery mind. If felt good. Like a drunkard.

there was also this big phase where I didn't know what to do. This is when I brought in my conceptless non-dual, awareness, as best I can. But it was weirdly harder doing it on eq, than when "sober".

God this feels so bastardizing to demean the EQ territory as being drug like but I digress.

so this was my first time getting into deep EQ and testing out this technique. Obviously they were made for each other. Apparently it's what Loch Kelly calls "mahamudra", just for reference. I've never studied it aside from what he teaches or Angello DiLullo.

I had a closed eye tea "break". My mug of tea right there. I grabbed it. It was the best tasting tea ever. It was appropriate meditation. But hard to meditate like that first sip. And hard to meditate between sips.

I was just in pretty out there territory.

It didn't help that I had the worries of my day to attend to. Sometimes I'm a sloth and hate going places. Which I had to today.

compared to the highest intensity EQ I have felt (somatically), I'd say it was at 50%

END

I felt like I was pretty chill the rest of the day. I visited my  dad. When he went to the store I meditated outside while feeding a majestic, goofy and cute wild bird.

2nd Sit

Much more informal but at a cool spot. Visiting my dad. I was by myself on a hillside. A bucket of corn kernels. I strewn them about as 'bait'. Sat down 50 feet behind it, and my friend, a Sandhill crane, came bipedalling up and started eating. In the background is a lake. Above me are fast moving cumulus clouds. And in my ears is a cacophony of motorists driving by, as well as birds. Sounds pretty fucking picturesque. I know I'm blessed to see that.

I did an open Sit, 30% noting, 70% choiceless awareness. Then switched to a conceptless awareness sit.

it was pretty fucking unusual doing it with this prehistoric looking avian-dinosar reaping the benefits of agrarian primates. I felt symbiosis with him.

At some points it was for sure sloppy meditation. Sometimes panoramic. Sometimes with him in the center. Sometimes both.

It deteriorated later as I watched Goofus, bumble into some red-winged black birds nest, in the reeds, and they started getting pissed and dive bombed him. Very silly and enjoyable. Shit, maybe appropriate in EQ.

I set a timer just to time how long I did this. 30 minutes 

I just need 20 more minutes and I've met my goal.

I really want to get more morning EQ Sits in. Its not unreasonable. This always gets easier (aside from things promoting burnout), but my insight into anatta, auto-noting, and/or perhaps dukkha relieving noting, may help.

I've essentially reframed what makes fasted noting seem unplesant to me. 

70-80% of all deeper EQ sits have arrived because of such noting.

Good trajectory.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 7:50 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 7:38 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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I'm just gonna call it. 1 hour, 40 minutes total formal mediation. I'm going to do some in bed, then down my amanita sleeping potion...

The problem is I have to go to bed early, and I had stuff I had to do today.

I'm setting a new goal. 9 hours of meditation next weekend. I have 3 days off... Any form or posture counts. I was going to say 6 hours but I really want to push it. : )

Edit: OH (Facepalm), and this is the most important thing: I have to get enough sleep. If I don't then my goal is simply one sit that day. In order to do this i have to try to time melatonin right and promise myself to go to be super super super early.
‎ ‎Nihila, modified 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 7:52 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/27/24 7:52 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Is that Amanita Muscaria? How do you find it? I've been curious to try it for a good while, but they haven't been in season when I was out looking.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/28/24 2:34 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/28/24 2:32 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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‎ ‎Nihila
Is that Amanita Muscaria? How do you find it? I've been curious to try it for a good while, but they haven't been in season when I was out looking.
Yes Amanita Muscaria. It's insane. I'm surprised they aren't more popular for sleep, but I'm sure health stores fear liability for people taking high doses.

I've never been so lucky and don't live in the right lattitudes. I live outside of Detroit, apparently they are here but not many forrests. But in northern Michigan I've found some yellow amantias. 

How do I get em? I buy em. I just looked up vendors on reddit. I used "mn-nice". A vendor from Minnesota eh.

​​​​​​​If I ever go up north again I'll look. I don't know how to find them though. It was blind luck.
‎ ‎Nihila, modified 1 Month ago at 4/28/24 3:23 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/28/24 3:23 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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That's very interesting, I'll have to try it.

I live in the nordic countries so there's plenty around here, but only during late summer/fall.

I got curious after seeing it had some good effects in people with PTSD.

Do you prepare it in any way?
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/28/24 4:41 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/28/24 4:41 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Holy shit. That's awesome. emoticon

Yes its definitely abundant up there. That's awesome you're gonna do that. It grows under a specific tree. That's all I know on the foraging front!

Yes. So for you if you pick them fresh you want to dry them.

After that what I do is take a small amount of material and parboil it. Keep boiling it at a roiling boil for a time. I do anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes.

Both of the above step convert more of the "ibotenic acid", into the main active chemical muscimol. Small amounts of ibotenic acid may be fine and more stimulating. But for sleeping or tripping (higher doses) you want to convert as much as possible.

Also I add vitamin C powder, ocassionsally I'll add 0.5- 1.0 gram. 

Or you can add citric acid. Or most conveniently some lemon juice.

If you lower the PH it changes more of the ibotenic acid to muscimol. 

So all these steps progressivly just convert more stuff to the active chemical.

But to be honest all I usually do is boil 1 to 3 grams. It seems like maybe 1 to 2 is the sweet spot for me.

Potency varies so you can always adjust as needed. I've never tried higher doses. I'm actually pretty sensitive to psychedelics, and I'm not in the right stage to take them. Amanita has a different compound than classic psychedelics.

Low dose is sedating. Some people say it's like beer. Muscimol works on the GABA system after all. High doses are a novel gabaergic psychedelic. Its the only thing like it in nature.

I hope you find good use out of it. Low or high dose! I'm definitely curious about it too, high doses. It's gotta be promising being so novel. It's going to have its time to shine hopefully for therapy, if it helps PTSD like you say.

And its completely legal already so, thats kind of a blessing 

Thanks for asking, it's fun to talk about 
‎ ‎Nihila, modified 1 Month ago at 4/29/24 5:58 AM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/29/24 5:58 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Cool, thanks for the explanation. It's an interesting substance for sure, I look forward to trying it.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/28/24 2:51 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Noting at work:

first of all, as just mentioned in my previous post I take amainta muscaria mushrooms for sleep. It's the only thing making my day ok when I have to wake up at 6am...

So what I'm saying is this only works when im refreshed 

I decided to do noting at work. I did it on and off for like 90 minutes pretty good. But it started to deteriorate.

At first it was awesome. I was very quiet and focused on the task. Literallt activating the task network over the DMN (default mode network).

I like both Daniel's and shargrols approached.  Daniel = You hair is on fire. Pay exquisite attention to detail when applicable. Shargrol is = Consistent non heroic effort.

I think I'm a bit fucked up, doing both sometimes or doing neither. But its OK I'm cool with that.

I think my favorite approach is using basic effortless mindfulness which shargol also talked about. Like it's not hard to be aware all day because awareness is effortlessly aware (when it is)  if I'm butchering and mixing up quotes, A big apology 

20 minute mediation session:

On my break crossed legged in my driver's seat. Cool air + running engine vibrating me. Rainy humid day.

I was getting jhanic factors. It was nice. + the burnt out face sensations on a busy work day.

Later today: I got off super early today. It is Sunday. We were at a church. I promised myself I'm gonna do an hour noting sit like yesterday. I'm super motivated.

Those noting sits are really really really fun. After I eat and get some protein and fat in me, I'll be good. Maybe some tea. I'll report back.

I need to finish replying to my main forum threads. I feel bad about that. That's a metaphor for my life. Tired procrastination. Anyway ...
shargrol, modified 1 Month ago at 4/29/24 7:01 AM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/29/24 7:00 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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finding-oneself ♤

I need to finish replying to my main forum threads. I feel bad about that. That's a metaphor for my life. Tired procrastination. Anyway ...

Heh, that is a little psychological knot to look at:

"I'm procrastinating because I'm tired. I make long lists of things I should do, even though I don't really need to do them. I feel bad unless I do a lot of things. I do a lot of things which makes me tired..." repeat as necessary. emoticon
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/28/24 7:53 PM
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RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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Second Session today. Sunday, April 28th

1 Hour 10 Minutes

Techniques: Noting (floudering). Noting, ok. Spacious open awareness via the nada sound.

Cutting edge: Equanimity

I was super tired from work. I had just eaten. I made several cups of tea. When I was sat down, I started to get soooo sleepy. At first the noting was ok. But then the sleepiness started to render it ineffective.

Eventually I dropped the noting, pretty quick. I was also doing a fair ammount of eyes open. It must have been 10 to 15 minutes in I dedicated like another 10 - 15 minutes to just drinking tea, eyes open. As usual it tasted pretty fucking good. After the tea was kicking in, I was able to go back to routine, effective noting. But due to the tiredness, it wasn't at 100%.

Eventually I got to equanimity. Out past the chunky phase, but perhaps not the deepest. One thing I had noticed was a possible new and helpful insight. it was something @bahiyababy said in another post. Where I was asking about certain paths through experiencing jhana. He said something about why someone may get stuck in 4th jhana (I'm paraphrasing the shit out of it and butchering it). The main point is the useful thing I took away. People get attached to spaciousness and peace.

I really think I was missing something. What I had noticed was that yes, I could noticed, and note, spaciousness and peace. But it's like, what's the point? No shit it's spaciouss and peaceful. I'm being a little facetious right now. But I have a point. The point is, it's not being attatched to the spaciousness and peace. It's what I'm missing. I'm not far enough in to know definitively, if and how I"m an ignorant type, attacted type, or averse. But I'm 90% sure, my main problem is being an ignorance type.

I was sitting in the peace and space (mixed with burnt out work sensations). But it was definitely deep enough EQ. And I was starting to sort of bring forth the slipperiness of mind. Not super intense, but I was able to will it to some extent. It may have already been present a little, but I was playing in it.

Here's the insight: I am really good at noticing and dwelling in the spacious attention. And in this case, in EQ. The peace. But what about the center? The space in the head? Not so much, at least when I'm in deep EQ. I was tuning out the center of my head. But I've been in EQ before where it felt like peace, but also the center. It contined the entire body and room, up down, and through. But many sits, I think I've been tuning out the center of the head in EQ, attention-wise.

A second insight sprang forth. I had realized why the slipperiness of mind, and the "fear of going mad" stage of EQ, has been so uncomfortable. There may be a sense of control, even in deeper EQ. Like it's me, the mighty meditator,  who made EQ happen. And I'm still in control. This is an obstactle to dissolving the center. It doesn't want to let go.

Damn. Pretty trippy.

Also at one point I was having a more religious type experience and felt the desire to "contact the HGA" instead I noted it then said "i dont even have to fucking do that. Its already set into motion. Just focus on bare sensate reality. 
​​​​​​​ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

If I can just get some good long sit on the weekends, I'll be ok. I need at least a few sits a week where I get to EQ. I just need days with more time, as well as less fataigue i.e., no work that day.

On work days, maybe I can do the "constancy not heroics" thing. Meaning even just a 20 minute sit each day. I always meditate in bed before falling asleep, so, combined with that, it would be maybe 40 to 50 minutes. The 20 minutes is just a minimun. Better than no formal time.

Alright. It's been a good day for dharma. I'm out for today. Metta
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/29/24 4:42 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/29/24 4:42 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
@shargrol

Yeah I could have a little more self-love and equanimity around it, for sure.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/29/24 4:51 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/29/24 4:51 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I normally don't include my work-break sits but they occur semi regularly.

I just realized I should make an effort to dedicate 20-25m a day to my work sit. It's a freebie. Even when I'm dead tired.

So basically I sat cross legged in my driver's seat, AC in my face.

Eyes closed with some noting. But I had realized I was getting more emotional that I felt I wanted to. So my sit changed a lot eyes open.

To a certain extent a few moments here and there of the conceptless state.

But I had an insight today.

I've always very casually said that I got into some kind of meditative state as a kid, under the blanket, huddled on top of the heating vent in the winter. It felt really good. It was euphoric. And the sound of the air was peaceful.

It viscerally hit me during my sit today. After hearing daniel say he felt certain peaceful meditation states as a kid, and certain jhanic factors.

I felt the same peace as when I was a kid. A milder version. And I really dug into the feel of thr AC on my face. And the SOUND.

It is now I'm realizing I have a built in predilection to white noise vent sounds or fans. Or peaceful rain even.

"there is a there there" I love and hate that quote. I don't really hate it. But it's just funny to act that way.... well... it makes me midly uncomfortable. In a self depricating kind of way. I only include tangets like this out of pure self-joy. It's mildly pleasing to me.

Anyway. yes i have been more naturally working with sound lately. Coincidentally I have a nice fan in my room on all the time. So whenever im meditating in there, I can focus on it. Also the nada sound.  

And it's AC season! Yay! It's both audible and tactile. I love the cold as much as i loved the wamrth as a kid. During winters
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 4/30/24 5:57 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 4/30/24 5:57 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Monday Night in Bed, April 29th, 2024

During this "sit", I was in bed on time. T- 9 hours to waking up. That gives me an hour to fall asleep. In this case I had enough energy to meditate at least an hour I think.

This sit was a fusion of shamatha and vipassana. I was switching techniques a bit. Or using no technique. "Shikantaza". 

The only reason I bring up this sit specifically is because I believe I got to EQ.

I feel like A. hard painful sitting, as well as B. Continuous mindful noting; both send me into EQ, hard. Sometimes reclined cross legged on the couch I can get to EQ pretty solidly, but less hard.

Now lying in bed on the other hand it doesn't seem as "intense", as the former or latter even.

I just remember my somatic field becoming much much much more chill. And my mind being slightly more equanamous. But it felt very "normal", with some jhanic factors, rapture. But more normal than a crazy cushion sit.

I fell deeply asleep and peacefully drifted to bed. I probably got a solid 7.5 hours sleep. Goal! Maybe even eight. C:
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/1/24 2:03 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/1/24 2:03 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Some good news. Some good new developments.

I know I chime in with phases from time to time, where certain skills and techniques ebb and flow at work. Such as being in a flow. Non-self, non-comceptual awareness... etc.

But this is a huge fusion of new and old, and our cult's favorite classic technique. Noting!

I'm obviously joking about the cult thing, poking fun, sorry c:

Yes... Indeed. I've been noting at work, combining Shargols and Daniel's writings. And possibly my own intuition, and spacious awareness strength-skill...

When high energy I'll note my ass off. Usually it wanes in the day.

But shargols advice to just use basic effortless mindfulness. The mind is so light, like a cloud, ghost or mist. So regardless of attentional phase, or emotional state, or stress level, I'll just note where I'm at. And be very honest with experience like, in High(er) EQ. (Not EQ.4, yet).

I'm in the habit of doing this anytime and anywhere, more and more. Remember... im an ignorance type. I swing wildly from intense awareness to strong dullness, willful tuning out.

So this breaks it up, in a fearless way. I actually AM scared, so what ends up happening is my spirit lights up, watches life, and the animal relaxes, and all my mini-me's begin to agree that it IS nice, to notice this moment...

Also at work I've been doing it when talking to people. Doing it when using electronics, or any complex task potentially. The mind can make two thoughts simultaneously, bedded together. Think about it. A mental note, WHILE talking to someone, verbally, with my mouth parts. It's insane but true. Is the note in english??? I don't know. 

Sometimes I get hyper focused at certain parts of my job. I usually tune out during the information taking part. But all the consistency is making me have more mindfulness and continuity. Meaning, after the focused part, I REMEBER to start noting or mindfulness again. 

Its beautiful.

This could be another "phase" or a brief peak in extra productivity. But I'm skeptical of that because of the nature of noting, and combining shargrols and Daniel's beautiful advice. It's the fact of effortlessness, plus engagement and fun, PLUS the suffering alleviation.

SERIOSULY. I get anxiety walking by people who are staring at me, sometimes. Due to the spaciousness style attentional phase PLUS noting and relaxing, it removes the anxiety. I have other anxiety and stressors, some are more difficult.

And a final note on emotions. I'm more apt to notice them, and hence NOTE them, as they arrise. 

Fluffy little clouds? No. Noted, noticed? Yes. Impermanence, selflessness, not owned or controlled by a self? Yes. Craving or aversion? Nope. And if there is, it is known.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/1/24 6:39 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/1/24 6:39 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I don't know who said it but one of these pragmatic dharma teachers talked about conventional striving effort. As in how altheltes, and other effortful people expert effort.

They said the only time in meditation where that is applicable is BEFORE you get on the cushion. In other words it's the effort to sit 

That landed so much when I heard it.

I more or less just applied it. I'm sleep deprived so I cut it short but it was a fruitful 15 minutes. And now I know.

Unleash the beast to get me on the cushion. And then tame the beast and let the peace pidgeon out. A fancy pidegon the one with the fluffy feet tuftsies. C: ♡♡♡
shargrol, modified 1 Month ago at 5/1/24 8:18 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/1/24 8:18 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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All sounding really good.

There's a horse trainer who's motto is: “Gentle in what you do, Firm in how you do it”
Buck (film) - Wikipedia

Firmly gently straight ahead!
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/2/24 8:06 AM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/2/24 8:06 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
shargrol
All sounding really good.

There's a horse trainer who's motto is: “Gentle in what you do, Firm in how you do it”
Buck (film) - Wikipedia

Firmly gently straight ahead!

Aw shit. I love horses ^‿^
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/2/24 6:47 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/2/24 6:47 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
My 3 day weekend begins now. I need to make sure to get enough sleep.

I just need to plan well, to meet the sleep requirements. The 9 hours of meditaiton will be easy, if I can get enough sleep.

Right now. I got home, bullshitted on youtube. Then started feeling depressed, and ate food, and watched the start of one of the lord of the rings things. I mention this because the sort of depression. The karma of it lead me to switch up modes, stop watching, and hop on to some dharma shit. Oh, and it also made me start paying attention. I did 2 notes, while on the DhO. I did only one note, until I typed the last sentence up, at which point I decided I'm going to make another note, as a type that, so I must change my intention to type "1", into "2", in real time.

I also notice how this stuff is helping bail me out of the so-called and supposed "depression", but the depression really isn't a problem. It's almost inappropriate to label it that. Really, the real problem is the unpleasantness of leisure time. Or, using it to cover up experience. But if I'm covering it up, then that false leisure time isn't the real problem. It's not the real root issue.

By the way, for anyone reading. This stuff is all very obvious to me. It's not a new insight into my psychology. I'm really just sharing right now. And I'm getting to the insight. Anyway, so back to where I left off. The root issue... The root issue is the discomfort with life and experience. Like, the feeling I feel after I shut the thing off. That's what I did, and I didn't feel great, but the simple mindfulness of it was a virture. It was truth. It is wholesome and in line with the universe, my HGA, god, etc. What hapened was over the course of 60 seconds to two minutes I felt ok. I still felt uncomfortable but it was greatly attenuated. And also, I felt "Good" in that, I knew I am currently "questing". Ever since discovering that word for this entire process (the three tainings, but specifically stream entry), I've felt much more happiness and confidence, thanks to being able to synthesize a lot of complex ideas. And able to better communicate what I'm going through, if and when necessary. Communicate with non-DhO people, specifically.

So I guess I could describe the above experience as this: I went from failing my quest, to back on the path, instantly, within a few seconds. And made substantial progress on the path after a minute or two, as my system recalibrated itself. 

This isn't to say I shouldn't use entertainment. It's pretty wholesome sometimes. But my mind knows when it's being called. (by my Holy Gaurdian Angel?)
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/3/24 12:36 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/3/24 12:26 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Alright it's 1pm, things are going good.

1hr sit

Cutting edge: Unknown. Equanimity.

Posture: Cushion

I got up at 10:30. Cleaned my shower a little. Washed my hair. Made tea. Sat.

I put the tea in front of my cushion. I didn't drink it yet.

Right off the bat I was both appropriately energized, and expectedly sleepy. Good news I got enough sleep, thank god.

The curve ball variable is not drinking caffeine yet. I was unusually peaceful. But also slightly more dull.

At the very tippy toppy start I did some noting to settle in. Very seldom notes. After one minute they were dropped entirely. The thing is, I was trying to go with what state I was in. Peacefulness right. So no noting.

Not perfect Peace. Still an insight bug. Still sort of ephemeral kind anxiety in the belly. Closer to butterflies than full on pre/post-adrenaline jitters. My friend the anxiety that is a byproduct of the A&P/DN opening of 2011. They came as a package. Also in the mix some very very fleeting depression. Much much much less than yesterday.

And a nice bed of peace. Not the equanimity ñana Peace, but just a nice baseline.

Time perception was really weird.

I think at some point I began to sort of fluctuate in how much I was spacing out, how much I was missing, by increasing mindfulness for instance. But without tyring to fan the flames of anxiety. I was balancing the 7 factors in effect.

it took a long long long time to get to eq. I'll get there in describing it 

But in But middle I did the really pleasant tea break thing. This time black tea in my "jagoff" mug.

I only took two sips and decided to see how this effects things. I did notice the factors balancing better. Then i repeated this and had more sips.

It was in this phase I did more noting. Not the super fast noting but closer to a 2 on a scale of 1 to 10. 

Eventually that was dropped. I think overall I may have been doing more concentration type stuff.

But the best part was mediating on the body, specifically the back pain. I have a history at being good at that when I'm feeling ok. That's what propelled me to EQ and jhana on retreat.

In terms of how good I was practicing that technique this sit. It started at a 5 then jumped to 8 to 8. Then 10 for a time. In there was mixed in more tea sips.

remember how I said time was weird. It probably took 45m to get to the border of EQ. It felt like it took longer. And certain parts near the end also felt like it lasted a while.

I had an intellectual synthesis and insight last month thinking about non-duality of the sense gates. Vision is obvious. There is no difference between the seer and the seen. There is zero distance. It's a screen. Audio is more automatically nondual. And the body seemed confusing.

Like it's already one fucking thing. Huh? But im not trying to find out necessarily. Its just my internal process. But i did retrospectivly indeed find an insight into nonduality of the body. Specifically relating to jhana. And specifically relating to EQ. Vedana.

The sensations in the body as I approach EQ are more like energy. All one substance regardless of pleasant/unplesant/nuetral. A lot of times the vedana is hard to identify and it seems neutral. And formerly bad feeling stuff feels good. In anycase I've experienced this many times.

I forgot one last part. I think it's appropriate to put it here as I get towards the end. At some point I gave up all vipassana and just did conceptless awareness. After dwelling in the neutral/pleasant somatically non-dual state, then dropping all technique, into a conceptless non-dual mental state, it's like, they are meant for each other

~~~~~•~•

I plan on being at the gym by 2pm. Buy some stuff from the grocery store. Then clean some more. And do the second of three sits.

~~~~~~

Edit: I forgot to mention, I've been listening to Stephen Snyder podcasts. It helps to get into different teachers in this stuff. He's certainly pragmatic. But hearing some new teachers talk about certain profound stuff about the path to stream entry, tends to blow my mind when its novel. Like when I first heard about thre POI and MCTB. He was talking about vipassana being a path of impermanence that melts the room (and can freak people out) before stream entry. Or the "zen path", of being like being in a space-pod. The path of no self (as opposed to impermanence via vipassana), where it doesn't freak put the aforementioned freaked out person.

He said with vipassana impermanence stabilizes, noticing the arising and passing. Then after it stabilizes focusing on the ends and cecassion happens. That description was cool, not that I haven't heard stuff like that before. Such as from Shinzen.

It's also nice to hear other teachers contradict what Daniel says. I don't know. I'm not an arhat yet. I still follow what Daniel says as the foundation to orient me.

But also the space pod metaphor was super enthralling. It seems I inadvertently may have a blend of both vipassana and concentration. So we will see how this plays out.

Also I don't intend to "switch" nothing, as whatever stabilizes. As far as I'm concerned SE is automatic and an accident. If I happen to get to SE that way, so be it. It WILL be in the back of my mind though. If I've stabilized impermanence and I'm in that state and suddenly I'm able to switch to noticing the ends of sensations, it will be because I hears that from Stepehn and Shinzen and Ira like a little bug in my mind.

​​​​​​​However it plays out matters little.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/3/24 5:25 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/3/24 5:25 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts


This is the aforementioned "jagoff" mug. Such a good and underused insult. When I'm holding it drinking it, it's like a little little describing sign that labels the drinker a, quote, "jagov". I'd prefer that spelling, cause as is it seems too sexual. I just mean a fucking jagov, as in, "get off my lawn ya jagov".

I actually dreamt I was showing it to people at work last night. I'm obsessed with this thing.

Oh man. the DhO ought to ban my posts from the DhO GPT AI project, lest I corrupt the damn thing.
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/3/24 8:47 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/3/24 8:33 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Holy shit. I fuckin' did it. I can't believe I did that. It's not the first time I've had several hours in a day, but still. Nonetheless certain phases have less motivation. I was questioning my choices on the third hour. Actually, I decided to do the 2nd/3rd hours back to back.

Posture wise, the first hour I sat. Only moved to drink tea. 2nd hour got up to piss. Then reclined back on bed. Then got back on cushion for 30-40m.

I shall only detail the final hour, mostly the end.

When I was reclining I was doing eyes open, looking at a lamp. Very trippy, non-dual. At this point meditation quality may have waned. By the time I was back on the cushion, motivation was low. But I got back and saved the last 15 to 20 minutes. 

The trick was to command the thoughts in the room technique, eyes open. By the time I came back, insanely strong in the room. I deactivated the default mode network.

Even as I type I'm the most solidly I've been in EQ in a long god damn time. Thats why im not making this long.

One last point is the dreamy imagery stage. Well, I got there eyes open and it was as if objects in the room were there in lue of dream imagery. Therefore certain objects briefly appeared to morph into other objects, creatures, or simply moved.

Note: by the time it was 8:30pm, and it was time to start my 2nd sit, I knew I wasnt going to be able to easily fit the third hour in UNLESS I do em' back to back.

I needed to make time later for my degenerate time. Watching bullshit on youtube before bed. Im gonna brew some amanitas for sleep.

I think I got the sleep shit on lock. That will ensure a good sleep tonight. And I'll bust out the melatonin AND amanitas Saturday night. Yay. 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/3/24 10:12 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/3/24 10:12 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

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https://youtu.be/4t8KvdMtT4A?si=1p_10bxltwZvKoFa

This is just a link to Frank Yang's enlightenment 0% to 100% 

Ive seen it before. But its a little jarring and insane to watch right now.

The way he describes 4th path, and the way he's acting. I can't imagine.

I must know what that is like.

As soon as I enter the stream, I'm sending that resolve, wish or intention.

A little humbling he marks stream entry as 1% awakened. But I don't know shit. I also know its not linear. Plus, when it gets down to it, Im pretty sure we do this shit forever. (Exist)
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/4/24 11:37 AM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/4/24 11:37 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
Another god damn hour down. Well it was 50 minutes but close enough.

I woke up feeling relatively refreshed and ready. Relatively. At some point I had realized I wasn't fully refreshed. I wouldn't go as far as to say I'm fully sleep deprived. But I maybe could have used another 45m to an hour of sleep. This effected the sit.

Some key and novel details about the sit.

At first I calibrated noting like usual, to a point where I thought it was ok. But what was different was I decided I'm going to do a hone-in, 20 minutes of concentration/centering meditation on the entire body as an object. The timing of it was going to be subjective. As in, I go back to vipassana when I think it's time.

I always always used to thing I wasn't very jhanic. And I didn't do concentration. But as I've said looking back that wasn't true. It was very surprising with the jhana thing. But it's also equally surprising knowing I'd do full body concentration.

Obviously there can be a blend of the two.

In any case, sometimes I fall out of certain techniques or habits. So I decided lets see what happens. Also "let's see what happens when I apply end of sit principles (EQ ñana) to the middle. 

This meant having equanimity with hard physical pain.

During this sit I figured out a nice good 'hack', and a mantra and/or note. 

Also without the mantra/note. Just noticing the vague mass of the somatic sensations. A vague protoplasm.

Back to the 'mantra' I would just say "soma". It's weird, it's like an English word, that doesn't sound English. Isn't common. Most people don't know what somatic means. And even less "soma". Also, a pleasant synchronicity is "soma" is also the name for the unknown ancient Indian psychedelic substance. Possibly DMT, or some other some-such nonsense.

So yeah basically my main lack of sleep symptom is pressure in the face. Im trying not to identify with it. On a scale of one to ten is anywhere from 30% to 50%, which is why I know I got somewhat enough sleep.

I should have boiled down the amanita potion, so I wouldn't have to get up to piss. Ahhhh, oh well

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/4/24 4:58 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/4/24 4:58 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I went to the gym and it was way too packed. Honestly I fucking hate crowds. So instead I drive 5 miles away to a metro-park.

I find this spot and sit by the river.

It's my favorite weather. Overcast, but thin clouds. Meaning the world is bathed in a defuse divine light. Speaking poetically. Birds chirping abounds.

I mostly just do eyes open, non-dual, and sound/space based mediation.

The bird sounds were very trippy. It felt life nature wad speaking to me. Like a very poignant and even scary and humbling psychedelic trip. I'll be honest, taking mushrooms makes animals know you're high. I have a witness, for one thing we experienced. And other anecdotes. In the remote rural northern Michigan myself and a cousin were on mushrooms. A woodpecker came on the dirt with us 10 feet away. Those animals up there should not be comfortable with people.

So yes. I do have a pre determined belief here. Nature is both beautiful and terrifying/creepy. 

This is somewhat of a tangent but I'm illustrating how different this kind of a sit is.

It goes into the intermediate realm between the dharmakaya and nirmanakaya. That shinzen talks about.

It was about 40 minutes. I did another half assed 15m sit. And I went back to the gym when it simmered down a bit. Probably more sitting outside in a more urban setting in a second 
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/4/24 10:22 PM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/4/24 10:21 PM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
That's it for the day. I promised 3 hours barring getting enough sleep. I really screwed the pooch on that one. So 3 the first day. And maybe like 90m today of quality shit. I got some funny shit to say tomorrow.

I'm going to be as vulgar as possible from now on to fuck with the DhO AIs algorithm. I want the DhO AI to have the personality of a degenerate piece of shit 

​​​​​​​XD XD XD
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finding-oneself ♤, modified 1 Month ago at 5/5/24 10:02 AM
Created 1 Month ago at 5/5/24 10:02 AM

RE: Alex's Practice Log 3 (Finding-Oneself)

Posts: 531 Join Date: 1/7/14 Recent Posts
I was just kidding about that shit with the AI, if it wasn't obvious. 

Anyway. I got enough sleep. I even woke up ealier, so I slept from midnight to nine. I was even able to forgo the sleep supplements. Which I like to make sure to strategize and keep tolerances low.


1 hr sit

Posture: Reclined on couch, legs folded.