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TOPIC: After Stream Entry -- Now What?

After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 13:11 #13558

Apologies if this subject has been raised before. I did a search for stream entry and came up with 223 results. It seemed impractical to look through them all.

I was tickled by something Laurel said on another thread but decided to avoid hijacking that one and start a new one instead. Laurel, here's the quote I liked:

"It's like a dog chasing a car - what does he do when he catches it?!"

Recently I've been listening to Adyashanti on this subject. He talks about the change in the whole way of being in the world that occurs after "awakening." (I equate "awakening" with "stream entry," but that's a whole other topic.)

Before awakening, one is driven through life by ego-agendas. All of a sudden, the ego-agendas have nothing fueling them. What has to emerge now is a new way of engaging with the world. But in between, there is a limbo period when the old has faded away and the new has not yet emerged. Some people (he says) get stuck here, producing what Adyashanti calls "spiritual shipwrecks." Especially if you're in a position to live off your savings, you can just stay home all the time, letting the world float by. Arising and passing away. Arising and passing away. Arising and passing away.

I found (what I consider to be) some brillian posts by Katy on DhO that indicated that the key practice now is metta. That fits in with some other inklings I've had these last few days.

And by Googling around, I also found a quote from Jack Kornfield's After the Ecstasy, the Laundry: "Attaining the second stage requires a continual and heartfelt attention to the suffering that comes when we cling to our desires and fears, to our ideas and ideals. As these forces of human life are understood, they lose their hold on us. Finally, in a deep realization, the strongest forces of desire, grasping, anger, and fear significantly drop away. We fulfill the second stage."

That's all good for inner practices.

But would you care to comment on what happens after stream entry, particularly on the emergence of a new way of engaging with the world?
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 13:21 #13559

For what it's worth... Vince's reporting seems pretty similar to my experience. It might be worth listening to that recording.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 14:02 #13560

Always the funny question, eh? "What should I do if there's nothing to do?"

I suspect the particular integration process will vary a lot individually, depending on what your specific habits, patterns, beliefs etc are. For me it revolved around particular attention to cultivation of virtue and repentance for sin, in the context of my gradual conversion to Catholicism. This was what came up for me, and therefore what I dealt with. Perhaps in another framework it is not unlike paying attention to the interplay of clinging and aversion. You know what is "true." So it is clear when habits of behavior are resistant to that, or you are perceiving anything to be in opposition to anything. Radical inclusivity seems to me quite along the same lines as infinite Mercy. When is anything not being allowed to be exactly as it is? When is even that not allowing not being seen as simply being exactly as it is?

My two cents, anyway. Your mileage may vary.

And here the general terminology is "awakening" (when people here say stream entry they are usually referring to an earlier stage of development, also sometimes called "first path").
Last Edit: 16 Jul 2013 14:03 by Ona Kiser.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 15:31 #13564

Ahhhh... Awakening, not Stream Entry? Oh, then never mind.... for now. :)
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 15:49 #13566

So, is "Stream Entry" the equivalent of "seeing the ox"?

Maybe it's time for me to gain better familiarity with y'all's vocabulary...
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 15:56 #13567

I thought we'd stabilized around a fairly shared vocabulary over the past years here. But maybe I'm confusing dolphins and lotuses.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 16:13 #13569

Delete -- see repost below
Last Edit: 16 Jul 2013 16:17 by Derek. Reason: delete
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 16:14 #13570

shargrol wrote:
For what it's worth... Vince's reporting seems pretty similar to my experience. It might be worth listening to that recording.

Tom's remarks ("lots of discussion of cycles, paths, ups, and downs") suggest it may not be quite what I'm looking for, but I'll take a listen to it tonight.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 16:19 #13571

Shargrol was assuming you meant the the first significant partial awakening.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 16:32 #13572

Stream Entry is not awakening itself but a small part of it. It's a significant step in the right direction but it's an early step. It's a Theravada term, meaning that the practitioner has entered a phase of practice that no longer requires them to push - they will from now on be carried along by more "natural" forces. Daniel Ingram calls it "the ride." It can feel as if one's practice is practicing itself, playing out of its own accord. It can be a person's first glimpse of the not-self, impermanent and unsatisfactory nature of all the objects in their perception, or it can be rather ho hum, not even noticed. Its effects seem to vary widely from person to person.

www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/study/into_the_stream.html
Last Edit: 16 Jul 2013 16:32 by Chris Marti.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 16:46 #13573

I was hoping we could avoid The Big Controversy, but looks like we can't. So here goes.

The suttas present a four-stage model of enlightenment, which goes (1) stream-enterer, (2) once-returner, (3) never-returner, and (4) arahant (Pali) or arhat (Sanskrit).

That model is so well-known it's made it into Wikipedia.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_stages_of_enlightenment

Since it defines the stages in terms of fetters, it's sometimes called the fetter model of enlightenment.

Now, Daniel Ingram presents a different model, which we can call "the four-path model," as opposed to "the four-stage model." (If you're not confused yet, you soon will be!)

The four-path model is Daniel's presentation of Mahasi Sayadaw's Progress of Insight model, which draws on Buddhaghosa's fifth-century Path of Purification, which claims to be a summary of the commentarial tradition as it existed in his day.

So the question then arises as to the relationship between the four-path model and the four-stage model, a.k.a. the fetter model.

That's The Big Controversy, addressed in many articles on the web, and most recently in Kenneth Folk's blog post.

kennethfolkdharma.com/2013/07/1610/

For myself, I use "awakening" as a synonym for "stream entry," with "stream entry" being defined as in the fetter model.

Anyone who wants a longer discussion of this definition can read chapter 1 of my essay "The Phenomenon of Awakening." If you have a Kindle or an ePub reader, I'll send you a free copy. PM me with your email address.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 17:00 #13574

Hey, I was only tryin' to inject some info, as requested, into the conversation. I have no dog in the Great Debate hunt. I care about what happened to me and maybe helping a few others have it happen to them. I'll leave the arguing about fetter models and Ingram models to you all :P
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 17:04 #13575

Chris Marti wrote:
Hey, I was only tryin' to inject some info, as requested, into the conversation. I have no dog in the Great Debate hunt. I care about what happened to me and maybe helping a few others have it happen to them. I'll leave the arguing about fetter models and Ingram models to you all :P

Ditto. I have popcorn handy if it gets entertaining.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 17:05 #13576

There's nothing quite like spirituality for provoking fisticuffs :ohmy:
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 17:09 #13577

Chris Marti wrote:
Hey, I was only tryin' to inject some info, as requested, into the conversation. I have no dog in the Great Debate hunt. I care about what happened to me and maybe helping a few others have it happen to them. I'll leave the arguing about fetter models and Ingram models to you all :P

Dang Chris, you're freakin' wise these days! :)

Yeah, this debate is pretty much undebatable. Ultimately, I think KF is closer to the truth, but it is cold comfort because the Arhat doesn't get to slack off any less than the Stream Enter. People can say they earned the invisible ballon award, and they might be right, but they look pretty stupid if they walk around holding an invisible balloon. (Edit, need emoticon!) :lol: :oops:
Last Edit: 16 Jul 2013 17:11 by shargrol.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 17:18 #13578

Derek wrote:
There's nothing quite like spirituality for provoking fisticuffs :ohmy:

Or perhaps nothing like inordinate attachment to identity as X to provoke it? Similar levels of fisticuffs arise around everything from how high ones pants should be worn to whether one is sufficiently vegan.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 17:19 #13579

One thing more I'll say. I think that Arhat isn't the thing that needs defining, but rather "fetter" does. I don't think fetter = existence of. I'm pretty sure there can be a view of self that isn't a fetter. What do YOU think?


EDIT!!! Ona we posted at the same time, YOU does not mean Ona but rather anyone reading!!!
Last Edit: 16 Jul 2013 17:21 by shargrol.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 17:26 #13580

In case anyone was misinterpreting the ignorance I voiced above as some kind of clever debate ploy... DON'T! "I don't know nothin' 'bout no fetters er no arahants." :P
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 17:33 #13582

Oh Shargrol, now I'm really offended! :side:
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 18:58 #13583

LOL at Ona!

Just an observation. I think this thread probably swerved into the abstract because it started there.

Rather than the format of the original post, this thread could have begun:

I was tickled by something Laurel said on another thread but decided to avoid hijacking that one and start a new one instead. Laurel, here's the quote I liked:

"It's like a dog chasing a car - what does he do when he catches it?!"

I'm in a position to live off my savings, I can just stay home all the time, letting the world float by. Arising and passing away. Arising and passing away. Arising and passing away.

I found (what I consider to be) some brillian posts by Katy on DhO that indicated that the key practice now is metta. That fits in with some other inklings I've had these last few days. [etc.]

That's all good for inner practices.

But how should I engage with the world?



Notice how that formulation takes all the abstraction out and makes it grounded in more practical concerns.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 19:05 #13584

On a sort of related note, I'm cognizant of how information can be, uh, well, not so useful. It can be used to obscure the natural order of things, which is not orderly, structured, pretty, or generally all that useful to a mind that wants to classify and divide.

Neither here nor there, of course.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 19:41 #13586

Chris Marti wrote:
On a sort of related note, I'm cognizant of how information can be, uh, well, not so useful. It can be used to obscure the natural order of things, which is not orderly, structured, pretty, or generally all that useful to a mind that wants to classify and divide.

Neither here nor there, of course." -- Chris

"But how should I engage with the world?"-- Shargrol, Derek

Maybe the secret is that there is no "privileged content" for that hyperactive classifying mind: not "Dharma" or theology or attainments or practices-- any more than shopping lists, mental arguments, daydreams of some luscious consumer item, excuses for missteps... All just grist for the mill of practice-- here comes/there goes an excellent classification system/analogy/story/point of dharma/picture of the upcoming iOS7 gadget.

It's so simple as to be a total bore-- so we entertain ourselves with whatever comes to mind.

I have a book on my shelf called You Already Know What To Do. If I've read it in the several years since acquiring it, I don't remember having done it. But the number of times I've randomly seen the title-- those are worth whatever I paid for it.
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 19:51 #13587

So would "it doesn't matter" sum that up? (re: @Kate, @Chris)
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 20:06 #13590

Um, no-- not if the question is "how shall I engage with the world?"

From my POV, the answer is "as a practitioner, not as an expert on the fine points of religion."
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After Stream Entry -- Now What? 16 Jul 2013 20:07 #13591

Kate Gowen wrote:
It's so simple as to be a total bore-- so we entertain ourselves with whatever comes to mind. I have a book on my shelf called You Already Know What To Do. If I've read it in the several years since acquiring it, I don't remember having done it. But the number of times I've randomly seen the title-- those are worth whatever I paid for it.

Brilliant! If there's a prize for answering the question, you win! :cheer:
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