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Everything posted by Consilience

  1. Your relentless bashing and misrepresentation of Buddhism is astounding. ?
  2. The depth and projection of your own self deception is such a wild case study dude. You criticize, attack, and condemn spiritual traditions as though it’s some competition, as though you’re trying to sell a product and brand and must win at all costs. The fact of the matter is this level of understanding is possible without psychedelics and no one needs to do 300 trips to understand what you’re speaking about. Nothing you’ve said or teach contradicts other spiritual traditions, fundamentally. It’s possible to stare death in the eyes, opening up to it without concern, hesitation, or fear because the insight is that deep. This IS possible when one understands the nature of death, life, and reality and only possible when one understands death, life, and reality. This level of understanding is achievable and has been achieved by masters across the ages. The fact that you lack the humility and posses the arrogance to doubt this is astonishing and should serve as an example of one of the many traps on this path.
  3. OP, to understand Buddhism, you would need to actually put your ass on the line, commit to relentless meditation, contemplation and work with a real master. Until then, you wont understand. The tone, argumentation, and projection in your post is clear you haven't put your ass on the line. All the energy and time you spent criticizing Buddhism would have been better spent practicing, training your mind, working towards a direct consciousness/breakthrough.
  4. Samaneri Jayasara for spirituality. Probably the highest quality spirituality channel on YouTube.
  5. If you don’t have the appropriate teachings and teachers, sure. Otherwise, meditation one of the most powerful tools available, particularly the deconstructive kind like self inquiry or vipassana.
  6. The tone of this post is immature, and ideological. There is no you, no tricks, and that life you think is a belief is none other than no life. Go practice dude.
  7. This sounds a lot like belief, a belief built from a lack of stepping into the depth of suffering beings are capable of. Perhaps it is a game, and perhaps there never was anyone to lack enlightenment. And yet war, genocide, and numberless atrocities rage across reality. But hey, maybe I'm wrong, maybe you do see the game for what it is. I would add, the deeper truth is, there is no everyone to pretend and there is no you to pretend with others, or play all alone. There is no one to know the truth. There is just life.
  8. @Bronson Again, how do these skeptics account for electron microscopy imaging of viral particles? You can quickly do a google search and start finding images of various viruses.
  9. Confused what the specific claim is. You can view electron microscope images of virus particles?
  10. @Devin Enlightenment opens up the capacity for a joy that a self cannot hold. Way more joy is available post enlightenment.
  11. This depends on how intense your daily formally practice is, how often you're going on meditation retreats, and it depends on keeping up a technique 24/7. For me, the most effective forms of life practice are Shinzen's see hear feel or self inquiry. Lately self inquiry has had a lot of momentum in life as I'm going about my business. The biggest issue is this separation between practice and life. They have to merge and even more, the duality ultimately needs to collapse. (The spiritual bypassing version of this collapse is Neo Advaita) But when you talk to masters, unanimously they'll agree, practice must be maintained at all waking moments. So how much awakeness? In my experience, a lot more than I thought possible 1, 2, and certainly 3 years ago. Year by year the depth of the practice still amazes me, in both deep states of meditation and in life. Yet, the required work is, admittedly, enormous, however, so utterly worth it.
  12. Have you read up on the Tibetan monks who were imprisoned by the Chinese government and tortured, who came out more loving, deeper practitioners? I don’t know to what extent, but the capacity of the human mind and heart to expand, to be unbiased, is mind blowing and possible with relentless practice.
  13. Hello, I was recently pm'd questions regarding meditation and felt like the answer may help others, so I made this post. I've included the original questions and answered each one by one. There is a lot here and a lot more nuance I missed, but the post was already getting quite long so hopefully this is sufficient. Happy to further elaborate in the comments. To start, there are three main strategies when dealing with physical discomfort which of course applies to fatigue. 1. Who is uncomfortable? Become extremely clear on who/what is experiencing fatigue. Who exactly is the one "fatigued"? Of course you've probably heard many times "no one." But what does that actually mean? What is the nature of the thing experiencing the fatigue? This is where spiritual fantasy and bullshit flies out the window. Because until there is extreme clarity on this point, physical discomfort will continue being a problem. When it is recognized the fatigue or discomfort literally cannot touch who you really are or what you really are, both become significantly less meaningful and our relationship with painful sensations, in whatever form, permanently shifts. The practice of self inquiry helps here. Technique #1: Self Inquiry 2. Craving, Aversion, Purification, Enlightenment Let go of stories about the sensations of fatigue (or discomfort). Often times, the degree of the fatigue we are feeling is reinforced by the beliefs and unconscious/unspoken stories we're spinning about the sensations of fatigue. Without the belief needing to manifest through language, we interpret the sensations of fatigue through a deeply unconscious conceptual framework. This framework then reinforces the implicit, unconscious, and unspoken beliefs we have about the sensations, reinforcing whatever it is we believe. In this way, a small amount of fatigue or discomfort can spin out of control into a larger problem. To get really grounded, this #2 manifests in the emotional body as craving and aversion, which are defined as the pushing and pulling on experience. We experience a little fatigue --> We have a story about being tired --> Aversion towards the fatigue --> Fatigue intensifies because of aversion --> etc. We've now created a negative feedback loop. To get out of this loop requires mindfulness, discrimination about what is craving/aversion (a symptom of our beliefs) and what is the raw sensations (fatigue/discomfort). When we can sort this out using mindfulness, we bring equanimity to the craving/aversion which "purifies" it. This purification literally starts to purify the mind of the craving/aversion such that the mind begins to experience less and less of this mental activity. Two subpoints about this. Literally by paying attention and discrimination the craving/aversion vs. raw sensations of fatigue, we "purify" it out of the mind. It's actually that simple. Deceptively simple. Face the craving/aversion head. Where are these sensations of craving and aversion appearing? Within the fatigue itself, utterly entangled and undifferentiated from the fatigue. You need to untangle both, see both clearly. 2.i All craving/aversion manifests because of an ignorance about the nature of reality. This is why classical buddhism defines complete enlightenment as the ending of suffering, suffering is essentially craving/aversion. If one where to truly see into the nature of how things really are, the mind would not crave or be averse to anything. Only equanimity would remain. Yet because we hold certain beliefs/conceptual frameworks in the emotional body from ignorance, craving/aversion arise. 2.ii As this purification continues to take place over the days, months, years, and decades of formal meditation practice, fatigue actually becomes a source of bliss and believe it or not, energy. When the mind no longer fights with reality, all that's left is the energetic actuality or fatigue's reality. Fatigue is a form, is a manifestation of existence, is a reflection of god - all form is simply a composition of energy, a dynamic flux of impermanence. The best way to work on point 2 is Vipassana meditation, I would specifically recommend Shinzen Young's See Hear Feel technique. Technique #2: See Hear Feel #3 Energy Cultivation It is also possible to cultivate energy using specific meditation techniques. This can sometime manifest as kundalini, as a more sensitive energy body, as tingling sensations permeating various subtle energy channels in the body, or like a furnace in the dantian energy center. By cultivating this pranic energy, you literally start to have more energy on demand. Rather than recontextualizing the fatigue in #1, purifying the aversion to fatigue in #2, we're actively engaged in combating fatigue in #3 through this energy cultivation. My most recently meditation retreat, I was formally practicing around 14 hours a day, informally the rest of the day, and only sleeping 4 hours per day. I did this for 1 week and was focusing on energy cultivation the entire week. By day 4, I had an overflow of excess energy, enormous unknown reservoirs had opened up filling me with levels of energy as though I was peaking on LSD except enormously cleaner, purer, and more harmonized. It challenged everything I thought I knew about the body, mind, and vitality. The technique I used was simple, Focus on the breath sensations in the stomach. The inhalation process was natural, without any volition, will, or agency - a totally surrendered inhalation that was as shallow or deep as the body wanted. The exhalation process was extended and powerful - I would balance prolonging my exhalation all the while keeping the exhalation forceful. Imagine a long, forceful, slow, peaceful breath - these are the kinds of factors we're balance. As you use this technique more and more, it not only cultivates energy that stays with you throughout the day, you can return to it whenever you need AND it begins to become the normal breathing pattern when using any meditation technique, thereby facilitating a more energized practice overall. Technique #3: Extended Exhalation, Breath Concentration - The balance of all three of these will address the fatigue. All three of these points have enormous depth with how far you can take them yet each provides immediate results. If you are searching for emotional excitation, emotional stimulation, the bubbly, pleasurable feelings of happiness many people define as happiness, then yes and no. On the one hand, any sort of fixation you have on achieving a particular state can backfire. Yet on the other hand, the ability to generate these bubbly, pleasurable feelings is possible with shamatha meditation and is a skill I would highly recommend (technique #3 above is shamatha meditation by the way). However, the only way to successfully generate these emotions on demand is to be totally at peace when them not arising. If you're clinging to the generation of these sensations, you'll most likely fail. As you train your concentration with breath meditation (technique #3), happiness, joy, pleasure, deep calm ease are all side effects. Is this enlightenment? No. Indispensable tools? Yes. Pro tip: Hold a soft buddha smile as you formally practice and throughout the day. You'll be happier, the bubbly pleasurable kind. Now here's the thing, if you knew you were already happy, if you were awakened to the kind of non-dual nature of absolute happiness, you wouldn't mind sitting and doing nothing. The suffering you're experiencing as you sit is a tangible symptom of your unhappiness and ignorance about the nature of reality (see #2 above) as well as ignorance of your true nature (see #1 above). Hence, this is why you should practice. To actually awakening, not slip into beliefs about awakening. To say "why don't I just stop doing this and lay down where I will immediately find the peace and happiness that I'm looking for?" is like a drug addict using a chemical to relieve withdrawal symptoms. A bit of an extreme analogy, but the fundamental principle is the same. Meditation practice is highlighting a dissatisfaction you have with reality and rather than facing it with the light of mindfulness awareness to see its truth and thereby purifying the dissatisfaction, the mind wants to turn towards distractions that offer a temporary relief. There is no guarantee life will give you an opportunity to distract yourself in the moment of great pain, in the future. In all likelihood, the most painful, tragic day of your life has not yet occurred and when that day comes, there will be no bed to go lay out to ease the pain. The only thing you'll have is the quality of the mind, the depth of consciousness's awakening. The first sentence's logic is entirely backwards, in my opinion. When pain cannot be avoided, that is when it matters most how much we've purified the mind. Not just because we'll suffer less as a result of past training, but because the ability to make clear, wise, and compassionate decisions that affect others matters. Furthermore, sometime's and many times, unavoidable pain is the worst kind of pain. If we have sufficiently purified the mind and seen into our true nature, unavoidable pain is not actually productive, or helpful for our practice. - The bold only applies when seekers have poor teachers, poor practices, or are not actually serious about discovering the truth. In reality, the wisest and most effective forms of seeking are completely selfless. Seeking energy does not require a self. In fact, because there is not a self, seeking is not grounded in being a self. Therefore, when the illusion of self is seen through, only then does the real seeking begin. The illusion of self contracts and contorts the seeking energy which can create dissatisfaction yes. But when the seeking energy's source and nature is experienced, it is allowed to manifest without resistance and is WAY more effective. Don't throw the baby out with the bath water here. I would offer the possibility that what you're missing is a clarity around how meditation works and a lack of depth in practice. Which is totally fine! The fact is, to find real peace, to find the truth about existence, is going to take real work, not fantasy, or belief. This path demands 24/7 mindfulness, 24/7 contemplation, 24/7 prayer, it's not something we pick up and put down based on our feelings, our states, or our emotions, and is not something we can afford to put down when things get hard. To really see serious results of practice requires 1 - 2+ hours per day and a minimum of 1 week long meditation retreat per year with a good teacher. This is basically scapping by though. Therefore, if you have not done a meditation retreat sign up for one immediately. Shinzen is doing an online zoom retreat Oct. 22 - 29th, would highly recommend training with him while you still have the chance. If you've already done a retreat in the past, sign up for your next one immediately. After you've finished a retreat, immediately sign up for your next one. - This all being said, sometimes there will be times when you feel the need to soften practice, to ease up on the intensity. Flow, enjoy life, be slow and have faith in not only God, but in your self, have faith there are no mistakes and you are exactly where you need to be and only where you could be. I hope this helps my friend. Hopefully this helps some others in the community as well.
  14. That’s exactly right. It’s a cosmic mystery how reality itself, as no one, can come to know itself at deeper and deeper levels. It is pure, embodied paradox. And so we practice meditation.
  15. Just noticing how many grammar mistakes where in the original post... Apologies dear reader.
  16. This was at MAPLE lead by Soryu Forall. Technically there's a 3 hour exhortation (dude is very long winded), but one of the "techniques" for how to listen to an exhortation is to keep up a meditation technique and trust whatever needs to be received from the communication, will come through. This was the approach I used. Yeah MAPLE is intense af, but that's part of why I went. I would HIGHLY recommend it if you're looking for an in person retreat. For online retreats that are intense, Shinzen Young. His zoom retreats are around 8 - 10 hours per day of formal practice plus whatever self practice you do. Shinzen and Soryu both emphasize that when in retreat, you should be practicing 24/7, even in your sleep. Edit: I would also recommend Cheng Hsin Contemplation Intensives if you're looking for a more active form of practice that's also extremely intense. The C.I.'s are around 13 hours a day of practice when it's all said and done, but again, Brendan and Peter both stress 24/7 contemplation. For me it feels like I'm "giving" energy out into the world. So there's a very subtle visualization of pushing energy out as I exhale. The exhale also feels like I'm "pushing" fatigue out of the body and energy body. There's something about completely emptying the body of air with each breath that's energizing, almost like each exhale provides a tiny spike of adrenaline at the end as the body craves to breathe, but you just keep releasing more air, over and over and over. And yes I had a similar experience with it at first too. It was kind of harsh and a little stressful, not very meditative. Also the stomach was hard for me to keep attention on. However now it's pretty much instant concentration and very pleasurable. It just takes practice. I haven't worked much with the heart center for shamatha practice, but the reason I like the belly is because it is 1) the biggest source of energy in the body, 2) drops me completely out of the head and into the body, and 3) is the center of the body and therefore seems to be more conducive to producing a balanced state of mind. Everything feels very connected and in harmony with itself using the belly, more so than the nostrils or heart center. I used to use the nostrils as outlined in the mind illuminated, but since working with Soryu have switched to the belly.
  17. Integral Zen has multiple shadow work courses on their website that are pay by donation. I haven’t done them, but have heard really good things about Doshin and enjoy his YouTube videos. I would start there as it will shadow work taught by someone who’s actually Awakened, which will give a very different context and intensity.
  18. @Razard86 Really nice description. I honestly don’t have anything to add other than what you wrote resonates and thank you for taking the time to share this.
  19. This is true until one sees even the nature of the ego is illusion. Calling you a YOU is more ego, more illusion. One of the deeper traps of this work is self clinging, self fixation on the self, which is not it. Probably one of the deeper collective traps on this forum is the clinging to God as the Self.