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deeper meditative state

@Lonely_Traveller brought up the theme of 'deeper meditative state' in another thread. My feeling is that deeper calm/equinimity and a settled focus is being described. That is a norm many of us are familiar with.

Personally I find 'great Yin overcomes great Yang' as the Taoists say. In other words though we are attentive we also need relaxation and passivity.

In Sufism this passivity is like 'being in the hands of the washers of the dead'
http://www.counterpunch.org/2008/06/10/rumi-and-sufism/

In meditation (our teacher or Buddha for some of us) we are not becoming something else or something better but 'resting in being' if I can put it like that without being too dualistic. Is there an entering and leaving for you? A deepening? Do you experience change whilst sitting?

Comments

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Moderator
    edited November 2016

    Oh @lobster, I am a bad practitioner. My experience of meditation is so shallow, such threads poke a guilt in me that urge me to 'do better'. I do not meditate half as much as I should - and even that fraction is woefully optimistic....

    Excuse me while I go and contemplate my inadequacies....

    lobster
  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited November 2016

    :) This is a bit off topic BUT there are roads into or similar practices to meditation. For example I have no idea how people with tinnitus or an inability to be still do meditation? Maybe music based meditation or slow hatha yoga as a distraction or perhaps Chi Kung, which I know you are familiar with? There are also activity based meditations, knitting or bread making come to mind.

    Another transformative example is hypnosis CD's/Youtube vids. Tantra sadhana or mantra may be an inroad.

    Meditation is not for everyone. Service and Sila are perfect ways into transformation.

  • KeromeKerome Did I fall in the forest? Europe Veteran

    @lobster wrote:
    Meditation is not for everyone. Service and Sila are perfect ways into transformation.

    I found that even though I live a life adhering to the precepts of sila, the further you go into it, the more you start to obsess about the areas where maybe you aren't quite reaching perfection. You may worry about not being vegan, or not adhering sufficiently to right speech. It requires some time to find the right balance... but I couldn't say if I have been transformed by it. I think that is more a question of accepting it into your heart.

    lobster
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    Is there an entering and leaving for you? A deepening?

    When "I" sit, the sense of a time-grabbing self fades into the background...and the moments become more enriched with awareness ...

    Do you experience change whilst sitting?

    Yes a sense of timelessness but this experience is happening both on and off the cushion, however on the cushion (as mentioned above) it's more enriched by the awareness level ...

  • @Kerome said:
    You may worry about not being vegan

    It's worth bearing in mind that PVC clothing contains plastic. Plastic is made from oil. The mining and transportation of oil is enormously polluting and killing of many animals.

  • DhammaDragonDhammaDragon Carpe Diem switzerland Veteran
    edited November 2016

    @lobster said:
    Is there an entering and leaving for you? A deepening? Do you experience change whilst sitting?

    If I am able to begin my day with a morning meditation, I don't really experience change whilst sitting, but rather during the rest of the day.
    In fact, meditating any time of the day seems to have this effect on me lately.

    I don't enter, nor leave any realm: it is more of a blurry limit between inside and outside.
    There is a suspension of internal constructs and projections.
    Only a permanent savouring of the here and now.
    During and after meditation.

    person
  • Thanks guys.
    Increased attention/awareness I would suggest is a deepening.

    Timelessness is interesting, that sounds like being more present, more in the now. Sounds good B)

    Agree with the subtle effects during the rest of the day. I rarely miss a daily session and am fully aware of the benefits. One way to notice the effects is daily diary/blog.

    If you don't have a teacher, than self monitoring and feedback is a necessary skill. For example my monkey mind was very active. So I upped the time and forced Ms Monkey into set time stillness. Now what you gonna do monkey, nowhere to go? Beginning to settle and realise no escape. If really out of hand, I would focus on the breath or mantra. In other words occupy the monkey mind.

    Yesterday was trying out some of the great short guided meditations on insighttimer.com

    Many useful resources on the web ...
    https://www.tarabrach.com/guided-meditations/

    chaw' the mu'mey vo' wIj nuj je the ja''eghqa'ghach vo' wIj tIq taH acceptable Daq lIj leghpu', joH'a', wIj nagh, je wIj redeemer.
    As they say in the Klingon Bible.
    https://archive.org/details/KlingonwordJaeghqaghach-Meditation

  • DhammaDragonDhammaDragon Carpe Diem switzerland Veteran

    I was re-reading today the part on the Digha Nikaya 22 that explains the Jhanas, and I felt that it more or less reflects what I feel during and after meditation.
    Deepening is not quite it.
    Rather more like the uselessness to use dimensions as a frame of reference.

    "And what is right concentration? There is the case where a monk — quite withdrawn from sensuality, withdrawn from unskillful (mental) qualities — enters & remains in the first jhana: rapture & pleasure born from withdrawal, accompanied by directed thought & evaluation. With the stilling of directed thoughts & evaluations, he enters & remains in the second jhana: rapture & pleasure born of composure, unification of awareness free from directed thought & evaluation — internal assurance. With the fading of rapture, he remains equanimous, mindful, & alert, and senses pleasure with the body. He enters & remains in the third jhana, of which the Noble Ones declare, 'Equanimous & mindful, he has a pleasant abiding.' With the abandoning of pleasure & pain — as with the earlier disappearance of elation & distress — he enters & remains in the fourth jhana: purity of equanimity & mindfulness, neither pleasure nor pain. This is called right concentration."

    lobsterGus123
  • SpinyNormanSpinyNorman It's still all old bollocks Veteran

    I find this passage from the Satipatthana Sutta helpful when recognising different states of mind:

    "When the mind is constricted, he discerns that the mind is constricted. When the mind is scattered, he discerns that the mind is scattered. When the mind is enlarged, he discerns that the mind is enlarged. When the mind is not enlarged, he discerns that the mind is not enlarged. When the mind is surpassed, he discerns that the mind is surpassed. When the mind is unsurpassed, he discerns that the mind is unsurpassed. When the mind is concentrated, he discerns that the mind is concentrated. When the mind is not concentrated, he discerns that the mind is not concentrated. When the mind is released, he discerns that the mind is released. When the mind is not released, he discerns that the mind is not released"

    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/mn/mn.010.than.html

    lobsterGus123DhammaDragon
  • smarinosmarino florida Explorer
    edited November 2016

    A couple of times, perhaps four or five times, I had what might be called "wakeups" One lasted weeks, then finally settled down. It wouldn't do any good to describe what happened, except the last time was more encouraging. While sitting, I experienced a strong feeling that someone was watching me meditate and judging it. As soon as I brought my attention to that, of course it stopped.

    I am quite sure it was my ego that I was noticing, and for the first time I had become aware of the separation between it and "I". There's no way to prove that of course, but that's what happened I am sure. To read about that sort of thing, well, I knew what it meant, but to experience it was totally something else. I've also experienced times in mindfulness where karma was instantaneous and things happened very differently than normal. Everything was connected in real time in a way that defies description.

    Mostly, the effects of meditation in my Zen practice seem to be cumulative though. While doing just sitting meditating, I get calmer and my mind becomes still, eventually. Generally, each sit is basically like the others. Sometimes the monkey mind is very active, sometimes not so much. It's "just" meditation. The magic moments only happen when I practice now, unlike the first two times when they seemed to last for weeks. Those were probably not authentic wakeups, even though I learned a lot from them.

    Most plastic in the US is made from natural gas, and it is often made from plants as well. If you typed your response about oil and plastic on a keyboard......We can avoid contributing to any of that by buying used, and recycling our computers, monitors, keyboards, etc. Nothing has to be built just for me, including clothes. They come from thrift stores.

  • @smarino said:
    A couple of times, perhaps four or five times, I had what might be called "wakeups" One lasted weeks, then finally settled down. It wouldn't do any good to describe what happened, except the last time was more encouraging. While sitting, I experienced a strong feeling that someone was watching me meditate and judging it. As soon as I brought my attention to that, of course it stopped.

    I am quite sure it was my ego that I was noticing, and for the first time I had become aware of the separation between it and "I". There's no way to prove that of course, but that's what happened I am sure. To read about that sort of thing, well, I knew what it meant, but to experience it was totally something else. I've also experienced times in mindfulness where karma was instantaneous and things happened very differently than normal. Everything was connected in real time in a way that defies description.

    Mostly, the effects of meditation in my Zen practice seem to be cumulative though. While doing just sitting meditating, I get calmer and my mind becomes still, eventually. Generally, each sit is basically like the others. Sometimes the monkey mind is very active, sometimes not so much. It's "just" meditation. The magic moments only happen when I practice now, unlike the first two times when they seemed to last for weeks. Those were probably not authentic wakeups, even though I learned a lot from them.

    I have similar kinds of snippets of awareness. I get really enthused for a while and then it fades and then it's frustrating because it's all just back to normal. Then I have another of these experiences and then it fades and then it's all just back to normal, etc. Maybe what happens is that over time, the times a person has these experiences increases - both in frequency and duration, but in the meantime, it's just plodding...

    SpinyNormanshep83
  • @smarino said:

    Mostly, the effects of meditation in my Zen practice seem to be cumulative though

    Thanks everyone.
    I find that comment interesting. Becoming formally aware of the mind condition as @SpinyNorman described from the Satipatthana Sutta seems useful. There is a cumulative, long term calming as a minor (for some very beneficial) side effect.
    http://buddhism.stackexchange.com/questions/10301/how-to-discipline-self-to-practice-meditation-everyday

  • @lobster said:
    Becoming formally aware of the mind condition as @SpinyNorman described from the Satipatthana Sutta seems useful. There is a cumulative, long term calming as a minor (for some very beneficial) side effect.

    This is my experience.

    But... I did a long silent retreat once and was on lunch duty with someone. One day she didn't appear. It turned out that she was in the middle of a psychotic episode where she thought everyone was the walking dead (which everyone did look a bit like because there was no eye contact, no speech, no acknowledgement of another's existence). It taught me that not every form of meditation is appropriate for everyone. She was on retreat because she wanted to get rid of her psychotic thoughts. When I went home I was telling Buddhist friends and they said that meditation is good for everyone. Since then I've looked up the research which found that people who have a disposition to psychosis should be careful about doing too much meditation.

    lobsterGus123
  • SpinyNormanSpinyNorman It's still all old bollocks Veteran

    @Tiddlywinds said: I have similar kinds of snippets of awareness. I get really enthused for a while and then it fades and then it's frustrating because it's all just back to normal. Then I have another of these experiences and then it fades and then it's all just back to normal, etc. Maybe what happens is that over time, the times a person has these experiences increases - both in frequency and duration, but in the meantime, it's just plodding...

    That's been my experience, it's been like a gradual unfolding, some powerful experiences but mostly small increments, sometimes rather erratic.

    I'm not sure I would call it a deepening, perhaps more like an enlarging, a more spacious, open feeling?

    lobstershep83
  • me too.

  • @SpinyNorman said:
    I'm not sure I would call it a deepening, perhaps more like an enlarging, a more spacious, open feeling?

    Exactly right. Your use of language is much better. <3

    Deepening suggests entering and leaving. Plus also perhaps a narrowing or concentration (a useful narrowing/focussing exercise no doubt - see 8 fold path 'Right Concentration').

    However unfolding, expansion, a sigh of release and ultimately realisation, much better understanding. Many thanks. B)

  • i have been wanting to thank the person who cited "The Way of Mindfulness", which has been my companion over the last 2 weeks, and has 'tidied up' my meditation practice considerably. i am at the stage of constant meditation, to some degree or other, in addition to a 'sitting meditation'.

    it has been a long time since i studied a long text, due to cognitive impairments; and this has led me to practices based on experiental techniques. personally, i am convinced that "The Rightly Self Awakened One" is the perfect example for us all, and his teachings are a life rope in our journey to Nirvana: something to hold to, but not to hang from.

    may you have Mindfulness and the Causes of Mindfulness~

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