Author Topic: Changed view  (Read 290 times)

Vipassana_it

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Changed view
« on: May 25, 2020, 05:25:52 PM »
I've taken some days of stop from my Vipassana meditation; last stop was 7 months back.
Now, i notice that i'm less mindful and i do more mind wandering. But something looks different.
In some moments, i experiment a new view about a old problem in my mind, and i feel happy it doesn't hurt me that much as it did in the past.
Very little later, i see the old view of the same problem, and how it felt bad. It is a kind of liberation, like i have found a new kind of vision, more "intelligent" and i've worked for it.
As view, i mean i view the problem itself and the various motivations that makes it bad for me, and i feel various sensations when i have a view.
Sometimes, it flashes in my mind that there can be far more interpretations, views of the problem, and the one that is choosen is a kind of free choice.
Have you ever had this kind of experience?

hostelrob

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Re: Changed view
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2020, 09:26:26 PM »
Definitely know what you mean. It's nice having the safe space that meditation carries into daily life. Before, emotions and reactivity to a specific problem were all balled in a big knot. When I'm emotionally attached to a specific problem it's like tunnel vision. My responses were automatic and repetitive, aka banging head against the wall!

Meditation unravels the knot for me, and creates a little more "airiness" that allows other ways of thinking and responding to creep in. If I get triggered over a problem, now I use the RAIN approach that Tara Brach talks about often. I can still feel the knot in my stomach, but I know that it's just that, a knot in my stomach. Just recognizing it makes it vaporize that much faster, and I can respond to problems more mindfully.

What you're talking about is a great sign of progress in your practice... keep it up!

Vipassana_it

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Re: Changed view
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2020, 11:16:34 AM »
It's like i choosen what i wanted to be in the past, but now i see there are better choices. At the end, I was fully driven by body sensations (!).
The strange thing is that it feels like you can no longer see the old "you" inside your mind and body. You are now something "better". Thinking about problems that defined a large/important part of your life and don't feel bad for this, is like feeling a different being. And it opens to a very rewarding life.

NewPathForward

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Re: Changed view
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2020, 05:44:18 PM »
It's like i choosen what i wanted to be in the past, but now i see there are better choices. At the end, I was fully driven by body sensations (!).
The strange thing is that it feels like you can no longer see the old "you" inside your mind and body. You are now something "better". Thinking about problems that defined a large/important part of your life and don't feel bad for this, is like feeling a different being. And it opens to a very rewarding life.

Interesting thread!  It is always so nice when we have those moments of gratitude, looking back and realizing my potential to change has always been there.

I have been practicing between 60 - 90 minutes daily over two or three sits for the past three months.  It's the first time I've kept to a consistent meditation routine in my life, despite being introduced to Anapana a couple years ago.  At times I feel I'm getting no where, but now I am better at recognizing this as doubt and letting it be. 

I have noticed that people seem to be more receptive to me, they seem to enjoy my presence a little bit more.  I'm not sure if this is my ego telling me this, or if I simply am becoming more present, compassionate, and "light" in the eyes of those around me.  I think a metta bhavana practice has helped me better look people in the eyes and see the human being in them.  Not that this is always the case, or that I feel overwhelming compassion and empathy for everybody I see, but there is surely a change.

For me, I often don't see the change day-to-day as I become caught up in worldly things, expectations, ambitions, the whole lot.  Over a period of months though, I am able to look back and realize that I really am advancing in my practice  :D

Much metta to you, thank you for posting this.  It's a beautiful thing to realize  ;D

Vipassana_it

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Re: Changed view
« Reply #4 on: May 28, 2020, 10:15:37 AM »
I think it's normal to see progress not day by day but on a larger time stace: from what i know, Meditation is not a straight forward process. We just investigate the truth patiently, and then get the big result over some time.
If it can be useful, i used to make 30/45 mins sit, but i have found that longer sits, as said by Culadasa, are far more effective. In particular, you can see the difference when you pass 45 minutes: meditation becomes more profund and teach you more things after this time.

NewPathForward

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Re: Changed view
« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2020, 06:38:09 PM »
I think it's normal to see progress not day by day but on a larger time stace: from what i know, Meditation is not a straight forward process. We just investigate the truth patiently, and then get the big result over some time.
If it can be useful, i used to make 30/45 mins sit, but i have found that longer sits, as said by Culadasa, are far more effective. In particular, you can see the difference when you pass 45 minutes: meditation becomes more profund and teach you more things after this time.

Interesting.  I have some trouble sitting longer than 35 - 40m. If I am laying down doing a body scan guided meditation it is longer.  Often, around 10m I get much deeper and relaxed. Around 20m some pain / restlessness arises, and around 30m I often find deeper acceptance / removal from this “monkey mind”, or I see more clearly that I am NOT these thoughts, emotions and sensations, but by that time my goal of 30-35m is done and I’m ready to get up.

When did you find yourself sitting for much longer?  I am hoping to do a Goenka 10 day this fall, my first.  Should I prepare by exploring longer sits in the mean time?

Dhamma

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Re: Changed view
« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2020, 03:12:42 AM »
Interesting.  I have some trouble sitting longer than 35 - 40m. If I am laying down doing a body scan guided meditation it is longer.  Often, around 10m I get much deeper and relaxed. Around 20m some pain / restlessness arises, and around 30m I often find deeper acceptance / removal from this “monkey mind”, or I see more clearly that I am NOT these thoughts, emotions and sensations, but by that time my goal of 30-35m is done and I’m ready to get up.

When did you find yourself sitting for much longer?  I am hoping to do a Goenka 10 day this fall, my first.  Should I prepare by exploring longer sits in the mean time?


Dear friend,

May I offer a bit of advice? One of the things that I have learned from Zen Buddhists is that being too "goal-oriented" can be a hindrance in our practice. Don't get too caught up with the length of your meditation session - that's what I am trying to tel you. I know how hard it is to not think in terms of a goal. I struggle myself with this so much. This is why we should practice walking meditation as it can teach to be more in the moment with no goal in the moment; we don't step so much forward, but more downwards into the present moment - slowly but surely.

Also, remember that when you go to any retreat or go to be with monks/teachers, make sure that they are all on the up-and-up and all legitimate. Do make sure that they are part of strong Buddhist lineage as well; otherwise, you could find yourself in bad situations. 

Sorry if I came off as a a bit "preachy", but I felt compelled to tell you these things.

Take good care,
Dhamma

NewPathForward

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Re: Changed view
« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2020, 03:37:38 AM »
Dear friend,

May I offer a bit of advice? One of the things that I have learned from Zen Buddhists is that being too "goal-oriented" can be a hindrance in our practice. Don't get too caught up with the length of your meditation session - that's what I am trying to tel you. I know how hard it is to not think in terms of a goal. I struggle myself with this so much. This is why we should practice walking meditation as it can teach to be more in the moment with no goal in the moment; we don't step so much forward, but more downwards into the present moment - slowly but surely.

Also, remember that when you go to any retreat or go to be with monks/teachers, make sure that they are all on the up-and-up and all legitimate. Do make sure that they are part of strong Buddhist lineage as well; otherwise, you could find yourself in bad situations. 

Sorry if I came off as a a bit "preachy", but I felt compelled to tell you these things.

Take good care,
Dhamma

Yes, thank you for the reminder.  I did take your previous advice of practicing walking meditation, and yes it is more difficult than I would have imagined!  I followed instructions as they often practice in Theravadan Buddhism, with the 15ish foot path, “Stepping left/right” “Standing” “Turning” “Stopping” “Thinking” etc etc.  I have not been practicing it so much in the last week due to rain and more sitting, but I believe it did help a bit, yes.

The center I’m hoping to retreat at seems to be regarded very highly in my area, the Jesup, Georgia (USA) center (Dhamma patāpa center).  It is in the tradition of Sayagyi U Ba Khin, who I have not done much research on.  There are many positive things about this place online from primary sources, no major scares to my knowledge. 

I want to incorporate Zazen into my practice, but I find it easy to spread myself too thin with several different practices and am focusing on keeping on a single path.  I currently practice Anapana on it’s own, full body Shamatha in which I focus solely on the relaxation and positive sensations, Metta Bhavana every 2 or 3 days, and Vipassanā in which I allow my negative sensations to simply exist and analyze them by experiencing them in their whole whilst watching my thinking and body sensations, along with positive emotions.

Walking meditation in the Theravada school, but no so much over the last week as I said.  Last week I was very heavy with Shamatha as I was having difficulty meeting my stresses with equanimity, and last few days a lot more Vipassanā as I’ve found more equanimity and feel it is safe to explore further.

Dhamma

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    • I practice Vipassana meditation + mental noting (mostly Theravadan)
Re: Changed view
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2020, 06:44:41 PM »
Dear friend,

May I offer a bit of advice? One of the things that I have learned from Zen Buddhists is that being too "goal-oriented" can be a hindrance in our practice. Don't get too caught up with the length of your meditation session - that's what I am trying to tel you. I know how hard it is to not think in terms of a goal. I struggle myself with this so much. This is why we should practice walking meditation as it can teach to be more in the moment with no goal in the moment; we don't step so much forward, but more downwards into the present moment - slowly but surely.

Also, remember that when you go to any retreat or go to be with monks/teachers, make sure that they are all on the up-and-up and all legitimate. Do make sure that they are part of strong Buddhist lineage as well; otherwise, you could find yourself in bad situations. 

Sorry if I came off as a a bit "preachy", but I felt compelled to tell you these things.

Take good care,
Dhamma

Yes, thank you for the reminder.  I did take your previous advice of practicing walking meditation, and yes it is more difficult than I would have imagined!  I followed instructions as they often practice in Theravadan Buddhism, with the 15ish foot path, “Stepping left/right” “Standing” “Turning” “Stopping” “Thinking” etc etc.  I have not been practicing it so much in the last week due to rain and more sitting, but I believe it did help a bit, yes.

The center I’m hoping to retreat at seems to be regarded very highly in my area, the Jesup, Georgia (USA) center (Dhamma patāpa center).  It is in the tradition of Sayagyi U Ba Khin, who I have not done much research on.  There are many positive things about this place online from primary sources, no major scares to my knowledge. 

I want to incorporate Zazen into my practice, but I find it easy to spread myself too thin with several different practices and am focusing on keeping on a single path.  I currently practice Anapana on it’s own, full body Shamatha in which I focus solely on the relaxation and positive sensations, Metta Bhavana every 2 or 3 days, and Vipassanā in which I allow my negative sensations to simply exist and analyze them by experiencing them in their whole whilst watching my thinking and body sensations, along with positive emotions.

Walking meditation in the Theravada school, but no so much over the last week as I said.  Last week I was very heavy with Shamatha as I was having difficulty meeting my stresses with equanimity, and last few days a lot more Vipassanā as I’ve found more equanimity and feel it is safe to explore further.


All is good then! I was just checking out for you, as we should for all our brothers and sisters on the Path. There is so much online information out there that it's so easy to get caught in a bad situation, even when you're thinking you are really doing the right thing.  Someone I knew on another forum brought to attention lately the cult-like characteristics of a few "Eastern" religious leaders, none of which I was aware. We all have to be careful.

Theravadan walking meditation seems to be a little different compared to Zen walking meditation, but their both wonderful.  I just thought that walking meditation in a general sense might help you to feel more grounded, more in the moment.

All the best, friend. :)


 

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