I keep falling over!

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.

I keep falling over!

Postby stevegriffith517 » Sat Aug 11, 2012 12:16 am

Hey this has been a long time problem for me. Forget sitting cross legged but if I can remember back I think I still had the same issue with that. I would clear the mind and start fading away and my head would keep falling over to the side and I'd have to keep throwing my head back up. I just sit in a chair, sitting up-right, and it is very comfortable, straight spine, well nothing forced, fully relaxed while still trying to sit comfortably straight. Anyways, I don't think it's so much the back but its the weight of my head perhaps. I start going into the non-perceptive void in a sense, without even wanting to really. It's not like sleeping if you know what I mean. I just fixate on any object, or feeling in my body, my energy, like a spot on my head, crown or otherwise, I just feel around sometimes and see what subtle things feel they want attention. Anyways.. it doesn't matter what I do really.. eventually I start to go deeper and my head will either want to fall forward, to the side, or whatever, and it takes my body with it. :p

So my question then is how the hell can i make my head stay up? cuz I'm really in a nice place I like to stay in. If I lay down, THEN i just go to sleep. Sometimes I just let my head go where it wants to and I'm there slouched over in a fuzzy thoughtless state. It's hard to explain, I can't explain another state like this, but I'm aware that i am there.. or that I exist, so I know i'm not just unconciously unaware sleeping. But maybe, I think sleep is hard to define and not so much the off switch we think it is and more of a transitional thing and a loss of time or blank state just has to do with our untrained brain that can't translate the experience perhaps. Something like that.

basically I don't know what's going on. I can't say I'm a trained buddhist student by any means. I just try to live good and happy, conscious and aware and rid my energy of any bad, distorted or distracting feelings.

There is one other thing. If I take time to really feel awareness of my body, it can sometimes root and anchor me in such a way that I can't reach these states, or I do but it comes slower. I reach these states within.. 5 minutes sometimes. I don't know how to define the ideal characteristics of a meditation for me. Oh man, I know nothing. But yeah. Head falling over, kind of a big problem.

I've been meditating consistently for around 6 years. Fighting with my mind isn't so much a problem anymore. I can trance out no problem. It's just about keeping my damn head up.

Somebody, anybody, give me your input I humbly ask you. :p ha.

Thanks. - Steve
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Re: I keep falling over!

Postby LonesomeYogurt » Sat Aug 11, 2012 12:37 am

What posture do you use? I found that a bench sent my head lulling in a good five minutes or less.
Gain and loss, status and disgrace,
censure and praise, pleasure and pain:
these conditions among human beings are inconstant,
impermanent, subject to change.

Knowing this, the wise person, mindful,
ponders these changing conditions.
Desirable things don’t charm the mind,
undesirable ones bring no resistance.

His welcoming and rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
- Lokavipatti Sutta

Stuff I write about things.
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Re: I keep falling over!

Postby mikenz66 » Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:09 am

Greetings, Steve,

Can you tell us a little more about what approach you are using? Sometimes in situations like this is is useful to use the posture as one of the objects of attention, so I might note the rising and falling of my abdomen, the touch on the floor or the seat, and the "sitting", by which I mean things like the tension in the muscles that are holding my back straight.

Another trick some people use is to rock back and forward and side to side a little to find a good balance point.

:anjali:
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Re: I keep falling over!

Postby stevegriffith517 » Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:30 am

I don't know what else to say really. I feel like i'm balanced. But i let all my muscles relax to simulate the letting go of bodily focus and my head still wants to roll, usually forward. If I lean backwards a bit I can kinda feel a point where my head feels like its well supported, but wait, now the head wants to fall back. :p

Maybe I need a damn neckbrace.

When meditating my focus is usually on my head, light erupting from a vortex inside my head, or some subtle muscles, parts of my brain, tring to rewire myself. Like off topic but have you noticed you feel like you are living through one side of your face? When I close my eyes and relax, most of the focus on the muscles feel centered on the right eye, right cheek, right side of my brain awareness. I've been trying to bring that over to the other side, trying to find the energy that would make me say... left handed, or left brained polarized to see if it exists and wants to be somewhere else. I just experiment. Or I'm focusing on a dot in my mind. I do a lot of focus retention stuff. Or I focus on the energy in my hands and arms, building the energy awareness.

What usually grounds me in my body is if I start doing bone-breathing or something that really involves working on the body.

I seem to fall over though when I try to go into the inner worlds, as my bodily awareness fades and gravity takes over.
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Re: I keep falling over!

Postby stevegriffith517 » Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:41 am

I think I am going to do what you suggest though and more fine tune my balance point and maybe there is a sweet spot where my head feels supported. Just like balancing giant stones, there's always the one little tiny spot. Maybe that's the key.

But i'm no traditional student, I thought I'd find more meditators to ask, I don't know too many personaly.
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Re: I keep falling over!

Postby mikenz66 » Sat Aug 11, 2012 2:26 am

Hi Steve,

Your technique isn't much like anything I'm familiar with, so it's not easy to give useful advice, especially since your practice seems to be a sort of dissociation from the body rather an engagement with it. However, I think that if you spend a bit of time focussing on the muscles and sensations associated with keeping your head erect you might find that it started to do it a little more automatically. That's been my experience, anyway.

:anjali:
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