Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

On the cultivation of insight/wisdom
dxm_dxm
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Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby dxm_dxm » Tue Jul 16, 2013 12:01 pm

Hello.

I did this accidentally, repeated it many times and this is what happened: I tried to enter first jhana using concentration meditation at the tip of the nostrils. After switching to the pleasant sensation, althow not entering first jhana (the pleasure not yet exploding into the probably the most pleasant sensation you can experience as human, but been quite close or at least half the way) I stopped concentration on the pleasant sensation and started observing anything that poped up: phisical sensations, thaughts, etc. While doing this I started observing more and more sensations very fast until at one point I was observing like 10 things per second and then they were poping up so fast I could not even "catch" them anymore. First time I did it and only time I got to the point of not even been able to catch them anymore they were mainly memories. When you think of a colleague for example you then think of another colleague and this happens after a while while not meditating. When I was in that state memories poped up like a photo from a camera and one lead to another like it would if not meditating only that this happened like 10 times per second.

The next day after I had this experience I went on a walk and intented to be mindfulness. I only practice concentration at the moment and I had not reached the first jhana yet when this experience happened and I did not practice insight meditation. I was not able to be mindfulness for more than a couple of seconds and it could barelly be called mindfulness, usually observing things after they poped up, not been in the present moment. In the walk I took then I was able to be completelly mindfulness for the entire walk through the city (2 and a half hours) and was observing like 2-3 things per second. I finally understood what been mindfulness means in that walk.

Edit: Also, I had no "insight" or "mini revelation" in this state like it is supposed to happen in nanas but I supose it was some nana


Can someone tell me how this tehnique is named and explain a little what happened ?

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reflection
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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby reflection » Tue Jul 16, 2013 12:46 pm

Hi,

From my experience,

When a mind is going toward jhana, it becomes centered and single-minded. It becomes very still. After the meditation this stillness will stay, so there won't be an arising of many memories and impressions in the mind. It is true that meditation can give you an insight into how active the mind actually is, but samadhi is stilling this activity, not making it (seem) worse.

What I think happened is you forced too much. I read "I tried to enter", "I stopped", "I started, doing". Being that involved can superficially seem calm the mind, but it does not really. That's why after you 'concentrated' and let loose, the mind was not at ease and it created many memories and impressions. In meditation you do not concentrate or use this kind of force. I think the translation 'concentration' is really bad as it gives rise to misunderstandings such as this. Instead you let the mind settle into peace and naturally all impressions fade away.

Sharp mindfulness also arises when the mind is calmed by not forcing it. It arises when there is little going on in the mind, not when there is a lot going on. So in a sense having mindfulness when the mind is restless is a contradiction. So what you have experienced in the walk may in some sense be connected to mindfulness, but not really be the strong version yet. It is more like clear understanding (sampajanna), although in my eyes that does not only include seeing things arise, but also know why they arise, if it is wholesome, and if not, what to do about it.

I hope this helps in a way.

:anjali:

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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby dxm_dxm » Tue Jul 16, 2013 1:37 pm


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reflection
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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby reflection » Tue Jul 16, 2013 4:58 pm

If you think it was useful I would say: see if you can cultivate the state of mind again, but there is no need to give it a label. Not all experiences have a name in the commentaries (like the nanas), or in the suttas. In fact, most don't. If you have experienced something unlike anything before, it does not have to be an insight that has a name. Although an indicator of progress, the ability to clearly watch things arise into experience is not something special that needed such a name in my eyes. (although some at certain places may give it a label -I don't know-, but that's obviously not going to add much to the experience itself)

The state of mind we enter meditation with certainly for a big part determines how that meditation goes. I think it is quite important to check out our state of mind at the beginning and see if there is something we can do to be more content. I allow myself a bit of creativity here. One option is just to wait, which is a good one because being able to wait and able to be contented are closely connected. But there are many reflections one can do to crave less, a classic one being the reflection on impermanence. Another is dedicating our practice to others. But what these reflections are and how successful they are are something that depends on our understanding and our experiences. For example, on a more fundamental level, understanding that it is the craving itself that causes the mind to be unstable, or understanding anatta. Here insight supports the calm, so you have to find out for yourself what you are attached to and how to let that go.

Also from personal experience, having direct contact with a teacher may help to get your feet back on the ground after new experiences.

:anjali:

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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby dxm_dxm » Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:04 pm


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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby dxm_dxm » Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:10 am

You have no idea how great the advice was. I was just able to enter first jhana for the second time, also pretty fast

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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby Zenainder » Wed Jul 17, 2013 11:38 am

dxm_dxm,

This goes along the same lines as to what reflection was stating, but I strongly encourage you not to conceptualize your practice, or "I want to attain" or "I have attained". What we do know, however, that mindfulness training cultivates these "attainments". It is often a detriment to stick a jhana or enlightenment in front of us as a carrot on a stick and grasp after them desperately.

Think of the attainments, which is a poor word imho, as the fruit of a tree. The fruit only grows through the right conditions and causes; the tree does not bear fruit because it is willing them, they are natural to the growing process so long as the conditions are right. Focus on your practice diligently without any goal in mind and you will be doing your practice a huge favor. This is, of course, my perspective and what I have found helpful in my practice.

Absolutely ponder reflection's input, I cannot add any more to it. <3

Metta,

Zen

P.S.-
"I want enlightenment" the practice precisely removes the "I" and "wanting" and leaves only enlightenment. Food for thought.
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reflection
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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby reflection » Wed Jul 17, 2013 11:45 am


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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby dxm_dxm » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:42 am


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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby Zenainder » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:16 am

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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby dxm_dxm » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:41 am


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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby Zenainder » Thu Jul 18, 2013 12:18 pm

My blog:

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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby pegembara » Fri Jul 19, 2013 6:36 am

And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech.

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Re: Entering jhana and then leting your focus loose

Postby Sanjay PS » Sun Sep 29, 2013 9:14 am

The Path of Dhamma

The path of Dhamma is no picnic . It is a strenuous march steeply up the hill . If all the comrades desert you , Walk alone ! Walk alone ! with all the Thrill !!

U S.N. Goenka


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