Author Topic: disturbing breath  (Read 6577 times)

MarcT

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disturbing breath
« on: August 09, 2016, 03:55:08 PM »
I notice that while scanning my body for sensation that my breath disturbs this process. So what I often do is I am holding my breath and then "listen" to my body. Indeed my perception of sensations is better then but Unfortunately I have to breath out..... :-[ 

the best way would be I think is to be able to slow down the breath right from the beginning but I suppose this is not Vipassana any more.

Vivek

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2016, 03:59:55 PM »
Hi Marc, Try switching back to Anapana. As concentration increases, the breath would get more and more subtle. When you feel that the mind has become sharp and subtle enough, switch to Vipassana. Hope this helps.
Let's go beyond this illusion, shall we?

Laurent

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2016, 09:36:16 PM »
I notice that while scanning my body for sensation that my breath disturbs this process.

A sensation disturbs you from observing sensations ?

Goofaholix

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2016, 09:46:28 PM »
I think you are probably compartmentalising the breath as something that only happens around the nostrils.

The whole body is constantly expanding, contracting, vibrating etc with the breathing, so a high portion of body sensations are linked to the breath.  You need to be aware of all of this.

MarcT

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2016, 02:32:40 AM »
Quote
A sensation disturbs you from observing sensations ?

No, it's the breath which disturbs me. Sounds weird but while I am trying to feel sensations  it's like I am listening to my body if there are any. and then the breath often prevents the perception of sensations. Often when I am holding the breath sensations coming up more easily.

I hope I explained better this time. My English is not so well.

Goofaholix

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2016, 06:41:19 AM »
So your breath is noisy?  Just carry on doing what you are doing, be aware of the body and the breath and it will gradually calm down over time.

Laurent

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2016, 11:25:04 AM »
Oh, noise!
The origins of disturbance are numerous.
Your aptitude to be disturbed will progressively decrease  ;)

metta

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2016, 12:35:52 PM »
In my case, it was my heart beat that interfered with observing other sensations. 5th day into the retreat, my heart beat became so loud to a point where it became unbearable. I could feel and "hear" the heart beat on top of my head and heart simultaneously. I backed off scanning and focused just on the breath and sensations until that uneasy feeling subside.
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

MarcT

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #8 on: August 11, 2016, 03:16:34 AM »
Oh, noise!
The origins of disturbance are numerous.
Your aptitude to be disturbed will progressively decrease  ;)

metta

the noise not that much it's rather the movement of the chest or heart-beating

However, when I hold breath for 30 sec. or longer after I feel more easily sensations on my body

Goofaholix

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #9 on: August 11, 2016, 06:14:38 AM »
The movement of the chest is a body sensation.

The heartbeat is a body sensation.

The are the among the things you should be observing.

Laurent

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #10 on: August 11, 2016, 12:26:07 PM »
Correct me if i am wrong: you think that there are correct sensations to observe and sensations that are not subtle enough.
This type of meditation induces that, with a good focus, sensations are often perceived as "dissolved", "subtle".
So, we can grow accustomed to this and later, when sensations are gross, believe that those sensations are not the sensations we have to observe. This is, of course, wrong.

Goenka says: "(...)as it is, not as you want it to be". What is true for sensations is also true for breath. Don't hold breath, let it go.
He also gives an example of a student who said he is not able to feel any sensations... but had removed some clothes because of heat  :-\

You can try to observe larger areas, passing more rapidly on them to have a general view of the body instead of focusing on parts.
Or focus your attention on those bothering sensations, not over-emphasize their importance but come closer to them. Detail them, then go to the other less perceptible sensations.
In the case you are not able to solve this situation, as abovementioned, just try hard anapanasati.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2016, 12:30:52 PM by Laurent »

TheJourney

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #11 on: August 11, 2016, 01:59:24 PM »
Pay attention to the sensation below your nostril and upper lip.

If more prominent sensation is felt from any where, pay attention to that sensation.

If the prominent sensation disappears, go back to paying attention to the nostril area.

This way the observation is what is given instead of directing it to come from a specific place. The observation is that sensation arises and falls away.

By staying equanimous to all sensation, you develop equanimity. By putting the focus on arising and disappearing of sensations, you develop the first of the 16 knowledge in insight leading to nibbana which is anicca.

The Goenka technique is more like developing qi (prana) movement. When you sweep, the mind is leading the way  of orienting a direction from top to bottom and bottom to top. Whether it is general area or specific local area, the mind is active in directing where. Where the mind intents, qi flows followed by blood.

This is why when advanced meditators sweep they can feel wave, which merely is energy (qi) moving up and down.

MarcT

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #12 on: August 11, 2016, 02:16:57 PM »
Correct me if i am wrong: you think that there are correct sensations to observe and sensations that are not subtle enough.
This type of meditation induces that, with a good focus, sensations are often perceived as "dissolved", "subtle".
So, we can grow accustomed to this and later, when sensations are gross, believe that those sensations are not the sensations we have to observe. This is, of course, wrong.

Honestly I don't have any idea how to describe subtle or gross sensations. I just try to feel any sensations. It's true I am forcing because my perception is so weak that I don't know if those are real sensations or only imagined sensations . So when I hold breath at least I can really identify them and sometimes I got a free flow over some parts.

He also gives an example of a student who said he is not able to feel any sensations... but had removed some clothes because of heat  :-\

That's also true for me but I don't have to work for that this comes automatically. Already at times while I was practicing Zazen.

Laurent

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #13 on: August 12, 2016, 03:42:14 AM »
My english isnot very good, so i did not understand everything, but if your respiration stops automatically, naturally, i think it is not a problem. But it is only my opinon. We should not control it, that's all. I can't really help you, sorry.

Metta.

VipassanaXYZ

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #14 on: August 12, 2016, 10:45:35 AM »
Hello MarcT

These are times when you need a teacher who can be there with you to understand the question (more of who is asking the question and what they need from the bank of teachings to help them where they are).

I can supply you some information and leave the decision on you:

There are physical sensations that are affected by physical aspects like breath - you can work with these but there is something deeper that you need to develop to get results that you should get from the practice.

In Vipassana, there opens a new sensibility for some people, something that they generally call subtle sensations for lack of a more precise English word.

These sublte sensations rest on a strong foundation of skillful qualities that come from developing and practicing the five precepts and other skillfull qualities recommended to be practised in everyday life for meditators.

At this point I'd recommend you read this here:
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/thanissaro/precepts.html


There are many kinds on concentrations: say concentration of an archer, of a person engaged in some activity that needs focus ... such concentration is what one is used to in worldly life, and sometimes the extent to which one knows the territory of concentration. You dont need the boring virtues to be skilled in this kind of concentration.

Then there is something called samma samadhi or 'right concentration' in context of Vipassana. It has foundation in a sensitive (skillfull, developed) mind (mind less engaged in tendencies of anger, greed etc.). Basically mind of a person who at heart would like having a simple, wholesome life, someone who is sensitive to nature, compassion ... on such a healthy foundation rests right concentration that enables you to discover more subtle reality. For some people, it is easy peasy to have these virtues (karma of the past in the long round of samsara), other people keep guessing and keep wondering in the dark (again, karma, habits of the past). No matter how dark the past has been, the karma of the present moment, of the now is very strong and even when one resolves to undertake the precepts, the purity has a powerful effect on the mind, one can gradually begin to train the mind, tame the mind to achieve the right concentration required for Vipassana, and keep developing this for further and further steps. 

Foundations that the precpets lay give you a clean slate to begin with, a clear mind free from feelings that would pull you down. "Samma samadhi" or right concentration brings home the orientation you need to observe sensations in line with the teachings. Undertakings for right conccentration is successful if the person has strong basis in the five precepts recommended by the Buddha - truth, non-violence etc. - as cliche as it may sound.

All meditation rests on concentration, concentration rests on the skillfull undertaking of the five precepts for the householders/lay people.

May you be successful.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2016, 11:04:06 AM by poojavassa »

MarcT

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Re: disturbing breath
« Reply #15 on: August 13, 2016, 12:24:13 PM »
Thank you poojavassa and all the others for your input.

 

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