Author Topic: Recognising Meditators  (Read 2700 times)

Alexander

  • Member
  • ...
    • Anapanasati
Recognising Meditators
« on: October 23, 2014, 10:07:09 AM »
When I meet in person an accomplished meditator it's almost as if I can tell this by virtue of the way they act, what they say and how they say it. I suppose what some may describe as an aura.

It happened recently that I met a meditation teacher and felt that this was not the case despite the station that was held.

I wonder how much others think one should attach to these feelings with regards to how reliable it is. I only think it's important in terms of how much value one gives to advice from different people.


Middleway

  • Staff
  • Just be a witness.
    • Vipassana as taught by Mr. Goenka - Switched to Shamatha
Re: Recognising Meditators
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2014, 12:48:37 AM »
Those initial feelings are usually highly conditioned responses. Nevertheless, I would note them that they have arisen and will not dismiss them right away.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

yossarian

  • Member
  • Write something about yourself here
    • Vipassana
Re: Recognising Meditators
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2014, 01:56:48 AM »
I agree with middleway. Also, if you can, try to pinpoint the reason behind these feelings. There is a cause there, something that's throwing you about the person. Figure out what exactly it is and you will have a better idea of whether it's you of the other person that's the problem.

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
  • Staff
  • Meditation: It's a D.I.Y. project.
    • KISS: Keep it simple stupid.
    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: Recognising Meditators
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2014, 03:28:56 PM »
...
I wonder how much others think one should attach to these feelings with regards to how reliable it is. I only think it's important in terms of how much value one gives to advice from different people.



Interesting issue Alexander.

I recently read an informative book that has some relevance to this (at least in my opinion). The book was "The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence" by Gavin de Becker.

In short de Becker has spent a long time working with victims of violence and people who have stalkers. His key message was to tune into and trust your instincts, to learn to recognise when you have (almost imperceptibly) picked up on signs of danger.

There were definitely elements of mindfulness in his approach. In dissecting cases where people became victims of violence, or managed to avoid it, de Becker explained his understanding that "gut instinct" is quicker and often more accurate at "knowing what's what" than the thinking brain. Often for victims they knew something was wrong but ignored what they knew.

Having said that, if there is trauma in your personal history this can mean you may misunderstand and mistake signs and instincts leading to false conclusions. However, the basic tenet holds: I examined aspects of my own life where certain situations have arisen and also relationships with some people and it became very clear that my instincts were the accurate guide - even if I did not follow them at the time.

You use the word "aura" which might put some people off the idea yet the reality is that we are all constantly giving and receiving subtle psychological signals regarding our state of mind and our intentions. I consider it natural as a meditator that (in the long run) these signals will become more and more profoundly experienced and accurate. "In the long run" because for some people, as mentioned above, there is always the possibility that signals will be misinterpreted under certain circumstances.

When I lived in the Buddhist centre in France I can tell you there were thirty-year practitioners teaching who weren't fit to wipe their own butts. One threw a hissy-fit and threatened to stop teaching the course if I wasn't thrown off of it (I was the course co-ordinator) as I had called into question something she did.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2014, 03:56:37 PM by Matthew »
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

Alexander

  • Member
  • ...
    • Anapanasati
Re: Recognising Meditators
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2014, 10:27:44 PM »
The other side of the coin is that if I go by these feelings I may think less of someone. Then consequentially wonder if this says more about me than the person I judge.

I brought this up with a friend who said that really there is no place better to trust than looking inside to how you feel. That is if you reach a place within of truth or stillness rather than ego. The fact that I kept saying 'I think...'  gave the impression that perhaps I didn't fully trust this intuition.

(Yes aura is rather loaded and I don't usually use it. That and 'energy' even more so, I find difficult although less so recently thanks to our friend Thanissaro!)

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
  • Staff
  • Meditation: It's a D.I.Y. project.
    • KISS: Keep it simple stupid.
    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: Recognising Meditators
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2014, 12:39:55 AM »
The other side of the coin is that if I go by these feelings I may think less of someone. Then consequentially wonder if this says more about me than the person I judge.

That is a risk, of course, but your friend's answer points the way, and is really the same thing as the analogy with de Becker's work regarding intuition and listening (this requires a certain stillness):

Quote
I brought this up with a friend who said that really there is no place better to trust than looking inside to how you feel. That is if you reach a place within of truth or stillness rather than ego. The fact that I kept saying 'I think...'  gave the impression that perhaps I didn't fully trust this intuition.
...
« Last Edit: October 25, 2014, 10:30:08 AM by Matthew »
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

sailor

  • Member
  • Write something about yourself here
    • Shambhala
Re: Recognising Meditators
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2015, 05:59:10 AM »
The Gift Of Fear is an excellent read. I highly recommend it.

 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
14 Replies
5196 Views
Last post May 06, 2009, 10:45:14 PM
by Matthew
24 Replies
7901 Views
Last post September 29, 2013, 01:54:30 AM
by Billymac629
5 Replies
2445 Views
Last post October 01, 2011, 10:07:02 AM
by Stefan
2 Replies
1464 Views
Last post November 21, 2012, 08:21:24 AM
by Matthew
7 Replies
2857 Views
Last post September 12, 2014, 04:59:58 AM
by JMatlack
1 Replies
1033 Views
Last post August 03, 2015, 06:58:00 AM
by Vivek
1 Replies
621 Views
Last post January 23, 2018, 11:02:55 AM
by stillpointdancer