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Welcome! 25 Apr 2015 23:53 #98510

Hello Everyone,

I’ve been lurking at the DhO for a couple of years and here for about a year, I started to post there and will be trying to make the time to do so here as well.

Elizabeth


Brief background– taken from a post on the DhO.

I started exploring practical dharma a couple of years ago. I was looking for something to add to my 30+ years of practice in metaphysical and magickal traditions and 8+ years practice of TaiChi & QiGong because there was a sense of ‘almost but not quite done’ and an inability to truly ‘surrender the illusion of separation’ and I wanted to find a way across that threshold.

I found MCTB and spent far too many months of trying to understand it and figure out how my experience fit against the maps. Finally I gave up and took Daniel’s advice to just do the experiment for myself. What I did was a combination of concentration – breath as an object switching to nimitta if one happened and insight - mostly without noting because verbalization was just too annoying. Off cushion, I focused on staying with whatever was happening at that moment without pushing it away or trying to hold on. Influences: MCTB, DhO, PIM, Thanissaro, Analayo, Joko Beck, Ajahn Brahm, and others.

I was surprised when something happened that seemed to fit Daniel’s description of a cessation and a shift in perception. It was good but also unexpectedly odd. For a time I backed off, focused on other parts of my practice, read or reread a lot (adding Awake Network and KFD archives into the mix). After recovering a bit of equilibrium, I came back around for another dose. Doing pretty much the same experiment as before, plus adding in some noting (a bit on my own plus some ping pong style via Buddha Pong) and also trying to “see” what the Dzogzen folks (Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche and Sam Harris) were pointing to.

Again, there was a specific ‘blip’ followed by an even bigger and more persistent shift in perception. Moment to moment experience was wonderful, marvelously strange, sometimes bewildering and even occasionally quite disconcerting. That was the point when I reached out for help. (Kenneth Folk and Adyashanti). I have managed to get through the “can I function?” phase and am now in more of a just be with whatever is and sometimes go exploring phase. Current goal: just explore and discover what it is to live whatever this is.....
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Welcome! 30 Apr 2015 17:04 #98629

Hello,
I'm Michelle and I’ve been lurking on the DHO forums for a few years now. Although I got MCTB in 2010, I didn't really consider meditating seriously until a few years ago but life got in the way then and I had a baby (who is now a small destructive toddler). I didn't think I could actually do any consistent meditation with such a young child so to 'prove' to myself that I could, I set myself a little challenge at the beginning of last year to meditate for 10 minutes a day every day. I did it too (yay!) and with that confidence boost since the beginning of this year I've been slowly increasing my meditation time to 20 minutes a day twice a day.

I'm hoping to be brave and start a practice journal here soon. I've been reading the journals here (and I used to on the old KFD site - I'm so happy they were moved here!) and I’ve found them very inspiring. You all seem light-years away from me in your practice but that's comforting as I know I'll get there eventually.

So hello everyone! (And a big hello and thank you to Laurel and Russell whose journals I've found so inspiring!).
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Welcome! 30 Apr 2015 17:24 #98630

Welcome Michelle! Great to have you.
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Welcome! 30 Apr 2015 20:59 #98631

Likewise--glad you're here. It's funny, but I can't really imagine who might be reading all my ramblings, but it's wonderful to know someone has found them useful.

The toddler years are a real challenge!
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Welcome! 01 May 2015 00:48 #98632

Hi All,
Thought I'd introduce myself since that seems to be customary here. My name is Noah. I'm a 23-year-old recent college graduate with a degree in human resource management. I currently work as a bartender but plan to transition into my career soon. I've been meditating for a large portion of my life in various traditions and techniques since both of my parents are yogis. I've been practicing Mahasi-noting in daily life for about two years and have slowly, slowly begun to discover the pragmatic ramifications of this path. My reason for practice is to reach a stability that will allow me to function in the midst of a struggle with bipolar disorder that has been the theme for the last eight years of my life. Specifically, technical path-attainments seem to be lessening obsessive-thought patterns and anxious states more effectively than medications and therapy (although these things were integral in getting me to the point of being able to benefit from vipassana).
I look forward to chatting,
Noah
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Welcome! 01 May 2015 08:56 #98642

It's great to see you here! I can attest that technical paths (new nomenclature, but I find it useful) are indeed the one thing that has tamed my chronic anxiety. And chronic anxiety seems to be a major motivator for many people's practice.
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Welcome! 01 May 2015 09:25 #98644

Welcome Noah!
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Welcome! 21 Jun 2015 23:18 #99302

Hey folks - I'm Doug.
very happy to be here, and can't wait to get to know you.

I thought I'd give you a quick rundown of me and why I'm here… but it turned out to not be that quick so ...first here's the tldr version:
  • Noob
  • Insight/Theravada flavored practice
  • No teacher yet, but need to fix that asap
  • Groups local to me are various flavors of Buddhist that are more ritual/dogma based so I will likely need to find an online teacher/sangha

Ok if you're still curious here's a bunch more words...

I’d been "playing" with meditation in no serious way and with no serious consistency for a number of years. Although I went through periods in that time of being consistent for several weeks it wasn't anything that would qualify as a practice.
(and the methodology wasn't terribly rigorous)

About a year & a half (or so) ago I started doing it a more consistently in response to difficulties in a relationship. I also had to admit that I was readily accepting other people's invitations to conflict, and I wanted to become less easily provoked.

I have a friend who was at least a little more experienced with mediation - that dude always seemed very centered. So, I started to do it seriously as an effort to find personal calm and compassion regardless of external happenings.

I knew that if I was going to do this it had to be serious. and I knew that Buddhism was at the root of meditative practice so I figured I'd have to learn what they might know. Admittedly, I was a little worried as I was NOT looking for a new theology or religion.
But - I started reading - a lot.
My previously mentioned friend really helped here giving me some books to start with.

I was impressed (and relieved) that the core teachings were relatively dogma free.
I was really surprised by how much ALL of it spoke to me.
The eightfold path in particular hit home. In addition to a daily meditation practice I began to really try and be aware of intent/speech/actions.

As you might expect I Saw AMAZING results.
My tiny degree of added imperturbability really helped.
And my attempts at responding from a place of quiet compassionate & truth seemed to make people less likely to continue an offensive.
It was a self perpetuating cycle of awesome.

Things went well for nearly a year.
I HAD been doing really well with my practice.
Pretty much everyday, and had worked up to about 45 min per sit.

HAD is the operative word there... reading the maps I thought I was perhaps on the cusp of some milestone… 2nd nana perhaps as I was dealing with new pains. But then I just stopped. For months. At least four. Maybe six.

Recently (a couple weeks ago) I decided to get back on track. And have done well as far getting sits in, but have to admit my attention took a hit during the time off.

I generally follow an Insight / Theravada flavored path, but I'm a novice and all of the real world groups near me are other flavors of Buddhism. They are wonderful but for me much of the ritual and dogma feels unnecessary.

So lately I've been searching online for communities that allow/support more simple and/or even secular practices.

I don't currently have a teacher but I am in the market for one. I traded emails with a teacher that I think would be great back before I fell off the wagon. I hope to reach out and get something lined up soon.

So that's where I am... really not sure where that is... but that's where I am.
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Welcome! 22 Jun 2015 10:34 #99310

Welcome, Doug!
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Welcome! 16 Sep 2015 17:24 #100478

Hello everyone,
My name is Melissa. I'm relatively new to meditation (been practicing for a bit over a year) but it's had a very positive effect on my life. I've sat a 10 day and 3 day vipassana course, have read some of Daniel Ingram and just recently discovered Shinzen Young. I find myself a little overwhelmed by all the information out there. I find it hard to focus on just one form of practice, as a result. At the moment I'm focussing on Strong Determination and the focus areas in Shinzen Young's book, which has helped me immensely with concentration.
I'm looking forward to getting to know you all and hearing your stories and perspectives.
:)
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Welcome! 16 Sep 2015 17:53 #100479

Welcome Melissa! Great to have you here. __/\__
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Welcome! 17 Sep 2015 02:14 #100481

Hi Melissa. Welcome. I've learned a lot in the time I've been a part of the forum here, so I hope it's a help to you too.
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Welcome! 17 Sep 2015 02:29 #100482

Welcome Melissa! :cheer:
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Welcome! 17 Sep 2015 06:33 #100485

Welcome Melissa!
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Welcome! 17 Sep 2015 09:23 #100492

Melissa wrote:
Hello everyone,
My name is Melissa. I'm relatively new to meditation (been practicing for a bit over a year) but it's had a very positive effect on my life. I've sat a 10 day and 3 day vipassana course, have read some of Daniel Ingram and just recently discovered Shinzen Young. I find myself a little overwhelmed by all the information out there. I find it hard to focus on just one form of practice, as a result. At the moment I'm focussing on Strong Determination and the focus areas in Shinzen Young's book, which has helped me immensely with concentration.
I'm looking forward to getting to know you all and hearing your stories and perspectives.
:)

Hi Melissa! Good to have you here.

Out of curiosity, which Shinzen Young book are you referring to?
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Very happy to be here ! 13 Oct 2015 22:09 #100793

Hello members,
I m very happy to be the member of this online group. Thanks for accepting my request.

I am Babu Karma Kunchen from Nepal. I love to do Dharma practice irrespective of different vehicles with major focus on Vajrayana.

Thank you.
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Welcome! 06 Dec 2015 23:19 #101544

Thank you in advance for your welcome.

I have been an on-and-off again occasional solo practitioner of meditation, mostly of a zen persuasion since I was 18. Most of my meditation has been of an active variety, while walking, etc. rather than seated, and almost none with others in spite of living in Tokyo. Reaching 50, and looking at the unpredictable nature of enlightenment, I had started to resign myself to the possibility that it might never happen to me, but still maintained the aspiration.

Earlier this month, a short break at my office, I pulled up an e-book on Dogen, and opened it to a page reading:
You should stop searching for phrases and chasing after words. Take the backward step and turn the light inward. Your body-mind of itself will drop off and your original face will appear. If you want to attain just this, immediately practice just this.

It sounded like solid advice, so I tried it there and then. And amazingly, it worked.

Everything in daily life is continuing forward based on the previous momentum, but absent the investment in the "I".

I am hoping that participation in this sangha will help in the transition, as well as allow me to encourage others on the path.
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Welcome! 09 Dec 2015 14:51 #101581

Hello, all!

Raised as a very devout protestant Christian, puberty hit, and whoops! Turns out I'm gay, church didn't like that very much, and over several years went from planning to be a pastor, to being a hardcore atheist.

Thanks to psychedelics, I became a seeker again, and I came to the dharma through Stephen Batchelor. Ah, now here was something that promised to help me make sense of the things I've experienced and these hunches and yearnings I had, without requiring me to give up my hard and fast atheist beliefs! I started meditating in December, slowly, then in March found Daniel Ingram's MCTB, which really put a fire in my belly. I've been keenly studying and practicing since then - I'm lucky enough to have a job where I have several hours of free time to do what I will from my desk each day, so I've had many hours of time to study and learn and question and think.

I started getting really serious about the practice in August, and began working with Ron Crouch in September. He feels I've very likely crossed the A&P and am entering or am already in the dark night.

It's been an interesting road. In some ways my overall happiness level has actually gone down - Partially just from where I'm at in my life, but also I think because as my awareness has grown, things that I've not been seeing that were just under the surface have made themselves known.

While it's been difficult and tumultuous at times, I'm also intensely grateful for having found Daniel's book and for starting on this path. It feels very, very right to be doing what I'm doing right now.
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Auke Jongbloed 16 Jan 2016 08:33 #102133

Hello Everyone,

I'm Auke and a beginner at meditating practice. I started around june 2015 with meditating after a whole lot of years trying "fixing" myself. I found that nothing really worked. So now i want to sit with what is, exactly as it is. So found the 10 day vipassana retreat of Goenka, signed up for the retreat of October 2015 and started reading and meditating doing anapanasati to build concentration before i would attend to the retreat.

It was a tough sit with lot of emotions, guild and stuff coming up. I noticed how quickly everything changed, depression, bliss, it changed rapidly within a day. I got me a little bit flabbergasted... Until januari i meditated on and off and in januari i decided i want this and i want to reach Stream entry.

I have set the intention to meditate everyday with a minimum of two 1 hour sits. Every Wednesday I wil sit for two hours with a local vipassana group. Once a month there is a one day mini retreat here locally with 5 hours meditating in silence. Besides that i want to sit this year two 10 day vipassana retreats. Via Darmha overground i found Ron Crouch who i have contacted is helping me with my practice. I meet him on Skype every week for this month after we will determine how to proceed.

Can't wait to get to know and learn from you guys.

Auke.
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Auke Jongbloed 16 Jan 2016 09:34 #102137

Welcome to all our new members! Thanks for joining us here.
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Auke Jongbloed 16 Jan 2016 10:21 #102138

Auke Jongbloed wrote:
Hello Everyone,

I'm Auke and a beginner at meditating practice. I started around june 2015 with meditating after a whole lot of years trying "fixing" myself. I found that nothing really worked. So now i want to sit with what is, exactly as it is. So found the 10 day vipassana retreat of Goenka, signed up for the retreat of October 2015 and started reading and meditating doing anapanasati to build concentration before i would attend to the retreat.

It was a tough sit with lot of emotions, guild and stuff coming up. I noticed how quickly everything changed, depression, bliss, it changed rapidly within a day. I got me a little bit flabbergasted... Until januari i meditated on and off and in januari i decided i want this and i want to reach Stream entry.

I have set the intention to meditate everyday with a minimum of two 1 hour sits. Every Wednesday I wil sit for two hours with a local vipassana group. Once a month there is a one day mini retreat here locally with 5 hours meditating in silence. Besides that i want to sit this year two 10 day vipassana retreats. Via Darmha overground i found Ron Crouch who i have contacted is helping me with my practice. I meet him on Skype every week for this month after we will determine how to proceed.

Can't wait to get to know and learn from you guys.

Auke.

Great commitment. Nothing but good can come of that.
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Auke Jongbloed 16 Jan 2016 17:34 #102140

Happy to have you. :cheer:
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Welcome! 16 Jan 2016 17:39 #102141

:)

Hello Everyone,

My birth name is Anusha, I am originally from Sri Lanka but now living in Auckland, New Zealand for the past 20 years.
I am an Accountant by profession but now taking some time off doing domestic stuff as my husband is busy with his work and I decided to stay home and practice the dhamma path.. :) :)
I am married with two daughters and I am 43 years old.

Thank you for letting me join your Group and truly very excited to explore..
Last Edit: 17 Jan 2016 19:07 by Tom Otvos.
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Welcome! 18 Jan 2016 09:34 #102179

Anna Aiyar wrote:
:)

Hello Everyone,

My birth name is Anusha, I am originally from Sri Lanka but now living in Auckland, New Zealand for the past 20 years.
I am an Accountant by profession but now taking some time off doing domestic stuff as my husband is busy with his work and I decided to stay home and practice the dhamma path.. :) :)
I am married with two daughters and I am 43 years old.

Thank you for letting me join your Group and truly very excited to explore..

Good to have you here, Anna. Welcome!
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Welcome! 18 Jan 2016 19:19 #102184

Welcome all!
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