Was this an unpleasant side effect...?

Discussion of Samatha bhavana and Jhana bhavana.
Myotai
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Was this an unpleasant side effect...?

Postby Myotai » Mon Nov 18, 2013 3:30 pm

Hi all,

Been struggling with Anapanasati for a while, literally not being able to find the breath. Then, a few days ago there it was, back again. This happened after just relaxing into a sort of awareness of the generic feeling of my whole body. This awareness seemed to shrink into a very focussed concentrated awareness of just the breath. Then, out of the blue came a palpable feeling of excitment, really quite uncomfortable really and not Jhana(ish) in the way I would have expected - or maybe it was, but it left me feeling like I'd had a small electric shock.

Now for the rest of that day and for the ensuing few days I felt really really low. Very low mood and low self esteem as well as feeling really vulnerable. I am fine now...it lifted almost as quickly as it came.

I'm not a wilting daisy nor am I prone to whining about my feelings so for this to happen after such an unusual experience seems odd.

What do you think?

M...

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PsychedelicSunSet
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Re: Was this an unpleasant side effect...?

Postby PsychedelicSunSet » Mon Nov 18, 2013 4:19 pm

When you say that your awareness shrunk to "just the breath" do you mean that your awareness changed from a whole body awareness to just the spot you observe the breath from (ie the tip of your nose/your upper lip) or that your full body awareness and your spot of observation (tip of the nose ect) merged into a single breath awareness?



Metta

fivebells
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Re: Was this an unpleasant side effect...?

Postby fivebells » Mon Nov 18, 2013 6:13 pm

The term anapanasati covers a lot of ground. Can you describe how you were meditating in more detail?

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reflection
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Re: Was this an unpleasant side effect...?

Postby reflection » Mon Nov 18, 2013 6:26 pm

To me the breath also usually becomes the central point of awareness after a gentle body awareness. That's because the breath is the most prominent sensation in the body, so that's where my attention is drawn to. I am not sure what the excitement feeling was, but I wouldn't give it importance. Just keep with the breath until it begins to be very fine and peaceful and it is the only thing you are aware of.

The sad/low feeling I would say had no direct connection with the meditation.

From a fellow practitioner,
:anjali:

Myotai
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Re: Was this an unpleasant side effect...?

Postby Myotai » Tue Nov 19, 2013 9:26 am

reflection wrote:To me the breath also usually becomes the central point of awareness after a gentle body awareness. That's because the breath is the most prominent sensation in the body, so that's where my attention is drawn to.


You know, that statement has had a massive impact on my practice. I have been labouring for months as to what I am doing wrong after all these years and there it is in a sentence...relax, allow the attention to find its own home rather than forcing (albeit subliminaly) it to 'attach' to a point.

Thanks 'fellow practitioner'...!

:toast:


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