Bill's Notes

  • orasis
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10 years 8 months ago #85473 by orasis
Replied by orasis on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Oops. Misclicked the "find this valuable" thing. Thanks!
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85474 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
No problem.

For the last couple of days I have been primarily keeping attention on the body and using binary note to get the feel of self referencing. The last two days I have been feeling uncomfortable physical sensations of sadness or anxiety that seem cycling on and off. It seems like contractions have gone down although thoughts of self referencing are continuing at the same pace the feeling of them is different. Noting is beginning to feel like adding extra work so I am just observing the body and watching as self referencing thoughts appear and dissapear. The sense of an observer is getting thinner and sometimes I seem to just be the process as it's going, including thoughts of self referencing which when encountered in this mode carry little sense of importance and evaporate quickly.
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  • Antero.
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10 years 8 months ago #85475 by Antero.
Replied by Antero. on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Good work Bill!

At this point of your practice you might be ready to zoom in on thoughts and start grounding the vibration. Once you find the right frequency, you can keep that on throughout the day with no problem.

Basically this is no different from grounding emotions. We are dealing with the same phenomenon of fluctuating conceptual mind that can be taken as an object of meditation and grounded in the body. We are just dealing with a more refined manifestation of it.

This is from my practice journal 3, post #42.

kennethfolkdharma.wetpaint.com/thread/44...set=40&maxResults=20

'
Being present with thoughts

Yesterday Kenneth taught me a new technique that has become my main practise on and off the cushion for the moment. I am taking thoughts as an object of absorption and zooming in to a zone where the proto thoughts are just about to get their meaning. If I zoom in too close, I will only get blackness with no thoughts, vibration and a feeling of vertigo. If I zoom out too much, I will get fully formed thoughts.

When I have the right focus, I will get a lot of visual strobing with different colours, vibration at the third eye and an ocean of proto thoughts coming straight at me. I get half formed sentences, words, peaces of visual images, all in motion, shifting and happily bumping into each other. And not making sense at all.


There is also some further discussion on the topic if you read further.

I am interested to hear how you find this technique, keep us posted!

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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85476 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Thanks Antero. This makes a lot of sense to me. I had already thought that what is called for is just a deepening of the prior grounding practice. I will definitely try your suggestions.

I seem to be moving into new territory or at least a significant deepening. I haven't been doing anything terribly sophisticated, just paying attention and watching as thoughts form and body sensations lead into identification. I keep having periods where the sense of a separate observer falls out in a way that I've yet to experience. It feels different than any mode of perception I've run into before or perhaps it is only a deepening. Afterwards there is sometimes a feeling of anxiety or sadness felt in the body with occasional thoughts arising that themselves feel hollow. It is as though there is a physical resistance to the process along with occasional thoughts of resistance, but I don't feel bothered by it and the identification with the resistance is mostly absent so that even in these periods there is a sense of surrender. It's been a couple of days since I've experienced any real self-contractions, although self referencing thoughts continue.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85477 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Taking Antero's suggestion I zoomed into the mind space where thoughts form. While doing this I noticed that if the thought went too far there was a specific jolt as it became something personal that I had to be aware of, defend against, escape from. Sometimes this jolt was felt even at the beginning of the vibration. After doing this for a day or so there came a point where that jolt could not be felt. As it was before with mind states there was a feeling of a lack of solidity that had been there before, and had been painful. It is still possible for me to have a self-referencing thought but it feels wispy and the contraction around "I" is no longer present. I have even tried to make it arise by rehearsing scenarios that typically bring about the contraction, but the "I" seems to have the same weight as everything else. I do not know if this is Kenneth's 7th stage, nor do I care. What is important to me right now is that which is keeping me from being here in the moment, connecting with life and with others. I am seeing that I can still get lost in thought and there is a subtle pull of sensations keeping me from being present. Whether I have come to this conclusion because of my awareness of the stages I don't know, but it is an area I'm interested in right now. Because of this I have begun using binary noting (silence/noise) to investigate the difference between conceptualizing and being present. Conceptualizing is often very pleasant and often very unpleasant and seldom anywhere in between and silence feels balanced and open. I don't know where this will lead me. It is not my intention to abolish the "self". Whatever the "self" is has never been convincingly explained to me and it seems a waste of time to think about at this point. Instead, I am looking for connectivity and balance rather than contraction and conceptualization. Will see where this goes.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85478 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
A beautiful exposition on duality/non-duality:

"From the perspective of the ocean, there is no time and space, nothing to do and nowhere to go, because the ocean is beyond all of those divisions. At the same time, however, this ultimate truth expresses itself as time and space, as the appearance of the waves, as the appearance of someone in a world. There is no me and no you, but there is the appearance of me and you '“ and this is where we live and meet, in the appearance. You don't exist, and yet you do, and that is why I can love you. I am not here as a separate entity, and yet I am here, undeniably so, and so are you. What I am (as the ocean) is beyond the story, and yet, undeniably, the story appears (the wave) '“ and as the wave, I have no need to deny the story, or pretend it doesn't exist '“ how can a story deny a story? So I dance and play as the wave, knowing myself at all times as the ocean, without contradiction. This only appears to be a paradox to the seeking mind'¦"- Jeff Foster, "Why the Impersonal Does not Exist"

www.lifewithoutacentre.com/read/essays-t...d-advaita-teachings/
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85479 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Have been intensively practicing binary noting (silence/noise). It occurred to me while practicing that "silence" is to be here, simple and unopinionated while "noise" is for the most part useless mental dialogue obscuring the silence. Twenty or so minutes ago there was a thought that before would've sent me into a highly anxious state full of contractions. It wasn't anything useful, like most of my thoughts it was irrelevant to the present situation, probably irrational and not anything I could do anything about at the moment anyway. Now when it came it was felt as a tightening in the stomach and chest with the occasional thought crossing. Was it painful? I don't know. I am finding I have much less invested in things that used to occupy quite a bit of my mental space, and in turn, my reality. I seem to have a feeling where this silence/noise is leading. In fact, I think I've been seeing this clearly for some time. A few weeks ago, it scared me. Now it seems that mostly what is being surrendered is a misperception that is causing harm. I am oscillating in between a state where the thoughts that take me out of the present are not apparent and I am just fully present, periods where this is mixed in with said thoughts, and periods where said thoughts, while they do not lead to full on contractions or negative mind states, are dominating and causing unpleasant tightening with a generalized dysphoric feeling. Will see what comes. I have seasons in my practice and this is just another one.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85480 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Have been heavily practicing for the past three days. Last night I was noting silence/noise. At a certain point the silence/noise seemed to lose their distinctness. At times I was noting noise, but it was just a physical sensation. I had a lot of tension and pressure in the head. I don't normally get head aches but I assume this is how they feel. At a certain point I just allowed the silence to envelop me. This is just a fancy way of saying presence with no pull towards thoughts/sense of observer. I felt cool, very pleasurable tingling on the scalp and the experience seemed to be permeated by stillness. I assumed this was just a jhanic state induced by rigorous practice, but it was there in the morning as well. The feeling was that reality was totally still, totally peaceful. As narrative thoughts occured they were quickly seen as conditioned attempts to pull me away from the immediately reality of the moment and they were quickly let go of. It was as though there was a compulsive pull into stillness in a way I have not experienced so dramatically.
By noon today this mode largely dissapeared and I returned to binary noting. I am feeling a conflicted sense between pushing onward and investigating more deeply or just allowing silence to surrender to itself. Both seem to feel useful at certain points. Tonight I attempted to zoom in the way I have done before. Though the thoughts were coming quickly they felt wispy and it was difficult to maintain the vibration. Perhaps I am not ready for this yet.
In Kenneth's videos regarding the 7 stages of enlightenment he mentions while talking about the 7th stage that every time the yogi notes a self contraction the feeling is as though one has poked oneself in the eye. I am beginning to feel the tightening accompanying fantastical narratives in the same way. It is felt as painful primarily because it feels as though I have just left a deep, abiding peace.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85481 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Out of curiosity over the last couple of days I have tried to note mind states. In doing this I am only noting "silence". It is a deep, peaceful alive feeling rather than an indifference. Strangely today in the car driving home I began to cry. It was rather spontaneous and charged and not the result of proliferation upon a story. It wasn't sadness, nor was it happiness, but it did have a feeling of depth to it. The question on my mind is: Can silence hold the tears? Can the tears hold silence? I had dinner last night with two former senior zen teachers and much of our discussion was about this, so it has been on my mind. Discursive thinking continues but the pull of it is lessening. Last night I zoomed into the vibration of it and afterwards there was a tremendous sense of letting go, as though the physical tension was being pulled off of my scalp.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85482 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Just as the disembedding from emotions seems to bring up the turbulent undercurrents beneath, so the disembedding from the narrative mind seems to being up much of the mental space beneath discursive thought. Discursive thinking seems to be going way down but in its place I seem to be getting a lot of memories from childhood. I don't mean this in a traumatic way. Though some of them are heavy in content, some are joyful, etc. It seems I have so little desire to resist at this point and so little belief that it's possible or helpful, so fear is just fear and love is just love. They flash on the screen and dissipate. My mind has never been quieter, but my body has been full at times of tension or heaviness. I am not sure where this leads. Some hours I've never felt so at home and some hours the heaviness feels like a physical burden.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85483 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Have been attempting to follow the vibrational current of narrative thinking for the better part of the last few days. For a couple of hours earlier tonight there was what felt like a massive surge of energy moving through my body, shaking my legs, stomach, and head. After this a deep feeling of presence and peacefulness settled in. Discursive thinking still continues but keeps getting subtler. Sometimes it is accompanied by an unpleasant tightening and often the subjective commentary seems silly compared to just being present.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85484 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Was walking the dog earlier today and spontaneously began to think of the phrase "In the seeing, just the seen". Suddenly it felt like recognition and the sense of their being a me separate from experience seemed to disintegrate. It felt strange. Thoughts were appearing and those that had any sense of "me" to them felt unreal. Thoughts of personal gain or meditation and progression just felt so strange. Everything just seemed to be going on without a filter. At first I couldn't tell if it was frightening in some weird way or beautiful. The thought appeared: "O.K. This is cool. Now let's go back." But I have since been unable to do so. There does not seem to be an internal or external, though some thoughts have appeared that suggest an internal space they don't seem to have an effect. I have tried to generate a reaction using thoughts that before would've produced at least a subtle physical tightening, but any sentence with "I" seems powerless in its ability to cause a reaction. It feels at first like it might cause a reaction, but then it falls flat. Thoughts keep coming but there's no sense of posession to them. This has only been for a few hours and may be temporary. I will see how it goes.
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  • Antero.
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10 years 8 months ago #85485 by Antero.
Replied by Antero. on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Whatever you are doing seems to work for you. Keep on doing it!

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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85486 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
This morning when I woke I was hit by a bunch of thoughts. I would be lying if I said there was no attachment to them, though the identification seemed like some subtle shade of its former self. Still, it would not be accurate to say there was absolutely no identification and that such identification did not cause a mild unpleasantness. Had some breakfast and shortly after seemed to return to earlier state where thoughts just seem to be passing through. Whatever is going on seems to be coming in waves. My body at points feels totally wrecked with burning, twisting, tightening, but with the exception of early this morning it has felt fine even when my body and mental commentary seem to imply otherwise.
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  • Antero.
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10 years 8 months ago #85487 by Antero.
Replied by Antero. on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Accidentally pushed the wrong button, sorry. Great posts Bill!
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85488 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Ha. It's cool, man, it's cool. Thank you.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85489 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Before my realization a few days ago it seemed possible to move back and forth between a state where there was a subtle but clearly defined sense of subject/object and one in which the observer fell away. Lately if I try to shift it doesn't seem possible. The sense of internal observer seems gone. Paradoxically, I am still having thoughts that would imply this separate observer, they just don't seem to have an effect. Before this change mind states seemed to have dissapeared yet there was still the energy of a thought and a subtle physical response. Now the physical response seems gone, but there is still a slight energy with thoughts at time. When I am not experiencing in this way it seems thoughts are arising from emptiness, abiding in emptiness and dissolving into emptiness. During these periods I feel a very warm flush at times through my body. After these flushes there is sometimes a very apathetic period where it feels like experience has been robbed of meaning. It's not particularly troubling because I intuit it is just a phase where the old is passing away making way for new ground. I am not trying to force anything at this point. Any energy invested towards directing attention just feels painful.
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  • Antero.
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10 years 8 months ago #85490 by Antero.
Replied by Antero. on topic RE: Bill's Notes
It seems to me that you are moving through the Stages at incredible speed!

When you can no longer find mind states, you are approaching the phase where any directed mental focus becomes an impediment. Now after disembedding from all sorts of gross phenomena, all that is left is the conceptual mind itself that is the cause for the arising thoughts. Actually the whole notion of disembedding from thoughts is ridiculous as thoughts are the very nature of the mind itself, but you are bound discover all that yourself soon enough'¦ :-) (if you haven't already)

You may find that this conceptualization starts to creep in more once the initial after glow fades. It is the good old die-hard selfing that will try to own the situation again.

I tried many different practices, but the non-dual approach of awareness watching itself proved to be the only way forward for me as it brought this conceptual mind into the spotlight without interfering or changing the results of this delicate investigation.

I have described how this process has unfolded for me in my practice journal 4, starting from post #120.

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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85491 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Thank you Antero for the description and the pointer. What you described in the posts does not seem that different from what I'm doing now, which doesn't feel like "doing" anything besides recognizing the pain of "doing". I think your notion of "delicate investigation" is spot on. Any pressure or directing feels bizarre, allowing oneself to get attached to thoughts in the subtlest way lessens awareness.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85492 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
For most of the day I have felt a heavy feeling throughout my body, like a grieving or depression. It seems that any thought I have about some reward for myself or some future fear seems to be hitting a brick wall. Because this process of conceptualizing has so long given life its flair, both painful and pleasant, its dismemberment seems to be leaving this hollow feeling permeating the body expressing itself mentally as a feeling of hollowness and dissatisfaction. It's really not a problem though as my journey has shown that these periods often precede some new freedom. Sometimes the feeling of heaviness dissapears and there is just a feeling of calm buoyancy, but mostly what is felt is this unpleasant heaviness. I think I am beginning to find the latter more rewarding. I know what it is to feel good and calm. To find genuine perfection in the scars is new to me.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85493 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Being aware of the rising, abiding, and passing of thoughts seems to really lessen the pull towards conceptualizing. Thoughts become like the noise from a television in the next room whose sounds are passing in the periphery. During these times there is a very strong warmth that seems to be coursing through my upper body and at times through the whole body. If anybody knows anything about the connection between mind/body and how this would account for the strong warmth I'm all ears.
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  • mumuwu
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10 years 8 months ago #85494 by mumuwu
Replied by mumuwu on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Apart from thought, who is meditating?
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  • WF566163
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10 years 8 months ago #85495 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Yes. Excellent pointer, mumuwu. Thank you.
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  • WF566163
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10 years 7 months ago #85496 by WF566163
Replied by WF566163 on topic RE: Bill's Notes
For the last five years I have derived meaning primarily from growing along what Kenneth and others have referred to as the vertical axis. I have always set aside time to sit and in some way or other this has been primary in my life. Now I feel like I don't know how to meditate nor do I have any desire to. Its a new feeling. There remains subtle but persisent residual conceptual tendencies. While it seems like it would be possible to work with these tendencies through further refining the sense of self along the vertical axis, I feel pulled towards growth along the horizontal axis and feel this will be most satisfying at this point, though I am not sure quite what form this will take (relationships, therapy, exercise, career). For whatever reason I have lost the desire to turn towards practice. I have had the experience several times lately of awakening in the middle of the night or early morning with the sense that nothing is familiar. It is very alzheimer-esque. I look out the window and it takes a few moments for me to realize where/who I am and it takes the mind a few minutes to put things together. I think Adyashanti talked about this in one of his books. It doesn't feel alarming so much as strange/confusing as though I have just been dropped into reality without any anchor.
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  • kennethfolk
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10 years 7 months ago #85497 by kennethfolk
Replied by kennethfolk on topic RE: Bill's Notes
Good stuff, Bill. Please keep us posted. The other day I was introduced to a new concept: divine retardation. Funny, that. But something akin to divine retardation does seem to happen at times as the disorientation of losing vast swaths of what was previously taken as self outstrips the brain's ability to re-organize at the new level. In time, it seems that people learn to get along fine. Better than fine, indeed.
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