This is part of my Meditation Journal (click) which includes dozens of posts.
I sat the other evening (4/11). It was about 8pm and I had no motivation to do anything else. Not that I couldn’t have found something – but from the inside -there was nothing pushing me to ‘do’ anything. The mind was empty of ‘me’ so I just sat down in the back of the apartment. It was warm, but I wouldn’t be moving so I thought – good enough.
I know I’ve explained this before – but perhaps you haven’t read it before here. I don’t meditate the way I did when I first started to sit and watch the breath. I’m in a different place now. The mind just goes naturally clear without the ‘me’. If I watch the breath – I can watch it for 10-20 breaths in complete awareness, and it’s the same as it was on breath 1. There’s nothing different, there is no point of concentration… there is no jhana that starts from that like it used to in the past.
The absense of thought is already there. It’s always there when I’m quiet now. When I stop the radio, the doing, the few thoughts on the surface of the mind that exist throughout the day… there is a stillness. It’s as if I’m in the moment – without ego and without self – without thought at all.
So, now when I sit – there’s no point to focus on the breath – and forcing my’self’ to do it seems counterproductive because it forces there to be some ‘self’ that does the focusing. Without the intense focus on the breath – there is no self at all. Even when I force myself to focus the ‘self’ comes and goes in very brief fractions of a second. It’s like it’s not able to show up for more than a tiny portion of a second. If you look back at the journal entry for 9/3 – it was happening there too. It has happened on and off for a while, but now it appears to be changed for now anyway.
So it seems like the whole meditation has changed then – what is the point of creating self by focusing on breath?
No point I think – so I don’t bother anymore. I just sit and experience things… sounds mostly. It’s as if the mind is new and is hearing things for the first time – every time. I could hear a chicken squawk and then hear it again 4 seconds later – it isn’t recognized as the same chicken or even as a chicken at all. It’s experienced newly – each time. Same with dogs barking, cars, horns, bells, people talking, music, etc.
Sometimes there might be a pain in the foot or the back or somewhere as I sit. The pain just goes on… it isn’t seen as negative. Not as positive. It’s just a feeling. Eventually it drifts away altogether.
So as I sat… it seemed there was really no point to sitting except that it was a way to continue the thoughtless state – experiencing things as new. I just continued to sit – not thinking anything about it – just observing when the thought arose. Then it went away when I let it go…
After 30 minutes or so there was a change in the state… there began to be an expansion that was felt in the head – in the mind – the perception. It began to get very loose there – and open, vast. It was like that for a little while. I just experienced it, no thoughts came about it – I just sat.
There was then a movement from what was – into something else. Impossible to describe… It was as if there was a change starting – and moving toward a different state. There was some tension about it – there was some resistance and some energy toward making the change though I did nothing myself to move toward it or away from it. I just experienced it.
Like so many experiences during meditation – it just seemed to move on it’s own. By itself. Sounds strange I know, but there is no ‘doing’ by me. By letting go of every experience, the experiences continue… on their own – on whatever schedule they’re on. In fact, if I tried to push it more – to move it – or help it along – the experience either disappears, stops, or goes into a pause where it doesn’t move anymore – just pauses. If I then let go of whatever I was ‘do’-ing it may continue, or it may just fade away. No telling what will happen really.
So it went on a bit and there was a point where it felt like something was moving inside that was at an angle to the perspective of mind I usually have. How could I explain…?
You know, your normal perception of self – of reality is straight ahead. The “you” is looking straight ahead straight out from your eyes – your face. Your perspective is straight out from your eyes and in this orientation. It’s always felt like that, it never changes. If your head turns to the left – your perspective also moves with it and moves straight out in a line directly in front of your face. I’ve never realized it before because I’ve never known anything different from this perspective except during meditation where I’ve lost all perspective and felt as if I was all that is…
But, it was changing. It was as if the orientation inside was shifting and was at an angle at that point. It was twisting to the left, if that makes any sense. The head was straight. The body was all, facing straight. Yet, something inside was twisting left and distorting the original perspective to be facing at an angle at times. It made the perspective – the one I, and I assume that everyone has – seem less real then. Is it false? Is our perspective only straight ahead because we attach so strongly to the idea that our eyes, our bodies are the “me”? Wherever we face – that must be where we are focused – where our orientation is…
This became distorted, and less solid. Less tangible than it was before. Less real. Less true.
So I continued to sit for a while as the process played around, distorting my perspective of things. After 10 minutes it quieted down and I came back into regular consciousness and stood up after another 5 minutes.
As usual there is no comprehension of what is going on – as it’s going on. There is no analyzation. There is no emotion about what is happening – it’s just experienced. Only afterward do I, to some degree say to myself – what in the world was that? That was odd. That was different from what I’ve experienced before. I get a bit excited about it then – knowing it was an experience I hadn’t had before. But, during the actual experience – if any emotion comes up – the state disappears or goes into pause – maybe to continue once the emotion is gone, or maybe it just fades away completely. Emotion, attachment to the states – whatever they are – leads to a pause in the state. It might lead to a fading away and loss of it entirely. When the state is actually going on – it’s best to let go of any fascination with it that might pop up.
For me now – there isn’t any fascination with any state that happens, as it happens. None really. This appears to be a ‘good thing’ as the process just comes and goes at will and isn’t affected by anything that I know of.
Does anyone understand this? Has anyone experienced something like this?