Shame and RadicalAcceptance
Lovely sit. At first I tried to call up insight stages, but I was too darned equanimous. I had perfect, painless posture. Very little in the way of vibratory anything. Jhanas were intense and fairly hard. I was Peace Itself, regal, whole.
Consciousness and Nothingness
Boundless Space (j5) has mellowed out to no big deal. Boundless Consciousness (j6) was remarkably rich: I felt mind soaring out, but also in from without, with great energy surpassing localized presence and stillness that somehow contained all apparent flux. This state usually felt like energy from the third eye, but sometimes “consciousness” would shift and feel as if from the third chakra, and then it would be whole body. At one point, “consciousness” was emanating from the small of my back. Pretty weird. Even weirder is that, though I say all this about body fields, body was gone. I cannot really tell much difference between Boundless Space and Boundless Consciousness anymore. I suspect that this is because Boundless Space has become a bit boring to me, and boundlessness implies space even as it modifies consciousness.
I let myself just stay in Consciousness as long as possible. The shift to Nothingness was sudden, deep, and complete. Nothingness had much less vibratory anything than in recent weeks. The Dark Night is very vibratory, especially Reobservation.
I had a brief stay in eighth. I’m trying to relax into eighth now instead of partly forcing it. This is formless, yes, but, strangely enough, there is always as sense of visual paling—like Nothingness is very Black, but this is colorless. It is therefore paler by comparison, an electric gray haze.
Difficulty reaching bliss or raptures. Very much high equanimity in feel, which is such a relief after the past couple of weeks.
I had another exquisite sit, 90 minutes, after a day of migraine (had to sleep through lunch and again after work).
I felt like drawing a card in the candlelight before the meditation began. I drew the Queen of Wands. It features a dragon (wisdom) and a lion (loyalty) and a sunflower behind the queen’s head (power of the life-giving sun). This is the card of caring for others, loyalty, friendship, sensuality, and passion.
Metta and Equanimity
My sit began in pretty richly spacious and neutral equanimity. I had some flashes of nausea, but very little in the way of vibratory or stage-based bleed-through into the jhanas, so maybe an artifact of the migraine. I had numerous state shifts, deepenings, within each jhana.
I had a spontaneous drive to do metta practice, which I indulged. It was interesting. I felt a kind of new “hands off” receptive love in the thing, as opposed to my usual driving, passionate, and ultimately demanding love. This change in quality, this relaxation, seems to have something to so with my feelings of renunciation from this last cycle. It may sound strange—and does even to me—that love would somehow be enhanced by renunciation. But there it is: A cleaner love and loyalty via letting it alone. May it last, because I think that this sort of acceptance and letting others be is probably important to my own development, as well as to others’ ease around me.
During the metta portion, throughout it, I would deliberately move from thought and abstract feeling to noticing the physical sensations that composed those high-level feelings. There is an opening from the solar plexus that waves up and across my chest. Around the heart some tiny contraction remains. I focused on seeing that clearly, for it is a knot. It is somewhat painful. It is full of self-referencing. But it also is fine as it is. It also is compassion, in other words, a braver artifact of my suffering. I’m not going to delete it, even if I could. As soon as there was radical acceptance, it diffused into the warmth across my chest and down my arms. I brought up each of my dharma friends, here and at work, one at a time, as well as myself. A lot of shame is in that little knot—love twisted into shameful and degrading situations of the past. It helps just to remember that this suffering is also compassion, and that I do not need to get rid of it but just see it clearly.
Formlessness and Fruition
Boundless Consciousness was again remarkable, with awareness just bounding outward and reverb bouncing back inward. But noting very vibratory—slow and of a piece, a flow.
There was a point at which Consciousness was exhausted, so Nothingness arose like the sweetest rest.
Then I detuned from that and had a fruition followed by intense wave of bliss. Maybe I’m finally figuring out how to get regular fruitions! Anyway, the bliss was so intense that I completely forgot to go for Purelands, which is saying something.
May you all be at peace this morning.