• Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited


About ardacigin

  • Rank
    - - -

Personal Information

  • Location
  • Gender
  1. I'm not as experienced in psychedelics as many people in this forum. These questions are for experienced users: - How do use the psychedelic insights - experiences to progress and dive deeper in sober meditation? - Do you try to re-connect energetically and emotionally to a memorable psychedelic moment in meditation? Can you describe in detail how this occurred the last time you tried doing it? - Did your sober meditation are easier and more fulfilling after psychedelic usage? Or does it facilitate impatience, boredom and distractions? I've got the sense that both can occur depending on the skill of the meditator. - What is the 'key' experience leading up to awakening in a psychedelic session? What does the body and mind go through prior to awakening? What similarities are there in multiple awakening experiences accessed in psychedelics? Can we imitate them in a sober state? How effective was it in your experience? - And lastly, what is the current status of Leo's 5 MEO-DMT experiment on himself? Does this substance have the potential for permanent transformation with regular usage and sober meditation? It is obvious from a temporary insight 'recognition' point of view, psychedelics are extremely efficient and effective. But from the insight embodiment, daily mindfulness and stable attention point of view, how much benefit one can get from 'only' psychedelics path? Does it interfere with the brain in a way that certain value systems like discipline, diligence and effort go away too early before no-self is realized deeply on a semi-permanent intuitive level? Can this potentially get in the way of sober practice? As a last note, I want to ask about this youtube channel called: Psyched Substance: Probably most psychedelic users know about Adam in this channel. He seems quite experienced in many psychedelics but he doesn't appear to have the attitude Leo talks about when approaching psychedelics. He seems to use psychedelics as a party drug, not as a serious investigation towards the truth. (This is my impression of him). This leads me to think that only psychedelic paths can be dangerous without preliminary meditation, cognitive behavior therapy and psychology work. He doesn't seem conscious of many things serious meditators are even though he is using advanced methods like LSD, DMT and many more. I think most people seem to underestimate and undervalue Leo's psychedelic insights. These are not easy to be conscious of even for experienced psychedelic users. It seems to require a certain intent and attitude prior to tripping. The psychedelic path appears to have a mastery curve and should be respected by both non-psychedelic and psychedelic seekers. Anyways, thank you for all your answers.
  2. I know, right? I've found TMI completely by luck a few years ago clicking on an add by accident on amazon. Then I saw the cover of the book. Checked the comments. Wasn't expecting anything too deep. Started reading it. In a few pages in, I've started taking notes and after more reading and practice, my mind was blown. This is one of the hidden gems of meditation teachings. I haven't found a more comprehensive, systematic, modern, holistic and scientific meditation manual than TMI. I tend to view TMI as I view Xenoblade Chronicles games. Recently Xenoblade Chronicles 2 came out for the Switch. Pure hidden gem. Not many people know about it, but it is one of the best in its genre. TMI is like that in my opinion. When I meditate every day, I think to myself: 'Wow! I'm experiencing all of these states of consciousness thanks to this one book. If it weren't for these instructions, I'd have never put this much effort on training stable attention and strong peripheral awareness. This one book transformed my spiritual practice in a major way.'
  3. I usually do 2 hour SDS sits but I'm only doing 45 mins these days. Rather than working through pain, I'm trying to increase joy and pleasure by meditating outside for shorther periods of time. I'm also working towards higher quality of practice for those 45 mins and deeper mindfulness integration in daily life.
  4. It actually matters how big or small the meditation object is. At least in the beginning. You don't have the conscious bandwidth to hold the entire sensory experience as a concentration object. If you try to attempt Mahasi Sayadaw style full body noting practices without developing strong peripheral awareness and stable attention, the attention will alternate rapidly. This is not the purpose of the technique. You want the awareness to penetrate consciousness. You want the attention stable. But the awareness must get sensorily clear and strong to note the whole body effectively. To do that practicing stable attention with a small object like the breath is very good training method. Noting is an advanced practice. You can try if you want but just like self enquiry, you need the introspective awareness and high degrees of sensory clarity to pull it off. It is mostly stage 7 beyond practice just like self inquiry. The effortlessly sustained stable attention to the breath should be baseline standard practice before insight practices. This is basically what Culadasa teaches in his book for greater success. Wait! Hold the phone. I didn't know TMI had an audiobook version I'm getting it now. Thanks a lot man!
  5. This is not common. Consider yourself lucky. What sort of an awakening experience was it? How permanent was it?
  6. Right. Before I've really focused on mindfulness mastery, I've thought self enquiry would be faster and more direct. But considering how stream entry is only the beginning of awakening and how this is a 40 year long journey with VASTLY different depths of awakening, only self enquiry approach is a dead end. Mindfulness must be mastered at a very deep level for more advanced work you talk about with 5 MEO DMT insights. You might get away with 'only self-inquiry' for stream entry. But that is just the beginning of awakening. No one talks about how 'self inquiry only' path leads to deeper and deeper awakenings. Because that is not the function of that technique. The other insight practices are needed for other sorts of insights. But to do them effectively requires deep mindfulness as a baseline. I don't see a way out of mastering the mindfulness fundamentals and I think that many people (both on this forum and other places) are wasting a lot of time doing weak sauce meditation and hoping that self enquiry will do the trick in a few years. Instead, do 'strong sauce' meditation first. Master it. And then do self-enquiry. That is a dangerous strategy which doesn't take into account the long term goals and pitfalls on the spiritual path. It is a 40+ year long journey if you are a seeker. Mindfulness should be considered as essential. It enables the mind to penetrate many spiritual insights with the right techniques. Self enquiry should be seen as one of those adept insight practices. Not a practice a beginner should spend 20 years practicing in a state of monkey mind for stream entry.
  7. Awakening is tend to be seen as the ultimate goal of meditation. And It is true. The permanent and intuitive realization that there is no separate self is the first stage of awakening. Before one delves deeper into other insights, this radical realization colors and sets the tone for the rest of the practice. This advice is for people who use the 'dry insight' practices like self enquiry to become awaken before developing advanced levels of samatha - mindfulness skills. On the surface, it might appear that self enquiry is the more direct and faster path to awakening. However, most people can't get awaken using self inquiry only. But lets say you are one of the lucky people. You got stream entry all of a sudden before really mastering concentration and awareness skill. But that is not the end of the path. And you should not rely on such a luck based strategy. Stream Entry doesn't turn you into a master-level meditator. It doesn't guarantee stable attention in daily life. It doesn't guarantee strong metacognitive and introspective awareness as a permanent baseline. Not without manual training. These are samatha skills one builds with mindfulness techniques. Self enquiry won't solve all of your problems. Even if it leads to awakening after 20 years of practice. A stream enterer will have easier access to high states of concentration and master the path of samadhi faster than a non-awakened meditator. But the real question is how awakening occurs in the first place? Science currently doesn't have a conclusive answer to this question. One thing for sure is that meditation, mindfulness and Samatha practices which builds stable attention and strong peripheral awareness aids and increases the odds of awakening. Once you master the no-mind and stable attention as a solid baseline before self enquiry, you put yourself ina very advantageous position. You will be living the rest of your life on a natural high if you are doing the practices right. Samadhi requires more work. It takes more discipline. ıt should be done alongside self inquiry. Especially as preliminary work. Samadhi pays off because you never waste your time building these skills. You can spend 20 years practicing self enquiry and 'weak-sauce' mindfulness techniques and really get nowhere. That is not what I'm talking about. 10 years ago, if you struggled to sit for 2 hours straight and now after 10 years, you still struggle doing it, then you are doing it wrong. You are practicing weak sauce meditation. If you struggle strong metacognitive awareness and stable attention after 20 years of meditation, then you don't understand the fundamental skills one needs to build in meditation. You don't practice the right techniques. If you can't reach effortlessness with relative ease after 20 years, then that is not deliberate practice. Don't use talent as an excuse. A better strategy is spending 5-10 years of your life purely mastering mindfulness and samadhi practices. Really emphasizing awareness and high states of concentration both in formal sessions and daily life. This can be done if you practice diligently with the right techniques. Now the rest of your life is going to be spent on self enquiry and similar insight practices. Imagine 10 years of pure self enquiry after mastering samadhi in the first 10 years of your spiritual journey. You are going in and out of deep jhanas, flow states and deep relaxation in daily life interacting with people. Your life changes at this point and some amount of insight penetration occurs even in the most unskilled meditator. If you could access this depth of mindfulness, you are not quite a beginner meditator anymore. You've done a lot of work coming here. Congratulations! Now, what are the chances of permenant realization of no-self here after mastering the fundamentals? Understand that self enquiry is an advanced meditation technique. Success is very slim and requires luck - momentary attunement in a beginner meditator. It only becomes powerful for adept meditators who have high degrees of stable attention, awareness and equanimity. In other words, meditators who've mastered the path of mindfulness. Rather than striving for awakening with craving in a conflicted and chatic monkey mind, you must learn to be patient. Take steps one at a time. Master no-mind first. Awakening is not going anywhere. You are NOT wasting your time. On the long run, you are saving DECADES of spiritual anguish by mastering the fundamentals of practice on the samatha - mindfulness path. No-mind is not an impossible ideal. It can be accomplished. You can tame the monkey mind. It is not some advanced work one does after awakening. It can be mastered more systematically than awakening since it is purely skill-based. Take the time and energy to master samatha practices and you'll be glad you did. I highly recommend reading 'The Mind Illuminated' by Culadasa. That book has everything you need to master the path of concentration and insight development. You can find his version of 'Self Enquiry' explained in the advanced stages of the book for adept meditators. Don't put the cart before the horse. Practice with discipline and diligence. And most importantly, have fun
  8. It is powerful if you can prevent dullness and sleepiness. It is ideal for full body relaxation. You just need an alert mind for spiritual investigation.
  9. Be careful making black and white decisions like 'Should I ditch this technique and try something else?' Do both at the right time. Developing stable attention is very important prior to working with self enquiry. First master stable attention with introspective awareness, then move on to self enquiry. You won't waste time by mastering how attention and awareness works. On the contrary, you'll save up time. Dry insights can appear as more 'direct' but its chances of actually producing lasting, deep and permanent awakening is lower for people who have not mastered mindfulness and samadhi first. Again, do both. At the right time. First, develop stable attention and then move on to self enquiry. Be patient.
  10. No. That is straight out false. It is a common misconception. The goal of the teaching is not to reach one-pointed concentration. That is a dead end. Stable attention and its development is a tool for awareness development. The advanced stages are more about awareness based practices than attention. The point is to develop strong (sensorily clear) metacognitive, introspective and extrospective awareness using stable attention and reach a state of mental proficiency capable of experiencing permanent insights and awakenings. You don't divide your attention. Attention and awareness are different processes in sensory experience until they fuse into each other in stage 9-10. Until then, you will subjectively experience attention and awareness as separate processes. And they actually have neuroscientific reasons as to make this distinction let alone the meditation mastery this understanding brings. Introspective awareness is inner awareness of mental talk, sights, memories, intentions, emotions, and feelings. Extrospective awareness is outer awareness of sights, sounds and touch. You use various techniques targeted at different things in TMI to improve the conscious power of both attention and awareness so that mindfulness gets deeper and deeper as you master each stage. There is a reason why a beginner meditator sits down to focus on the present moment and experiences little to no significant and deep experiences. When someone who is awake like Eckhart Tolle tells you to focus on the present moment, they are actually applying mindfulness at a MUCH deeper level than a newbie meditator. That is because the conscious power of attention and awareness in awake people are significantly heightened. They straight on experience psychedelic-like states effortlessly. It is like the technical scale mastery of Mozart - Beethoven compared to the 'musician' who has started taking piano lessons 6 months ago. They both know the scales. But they can't apply them at the same depth and skill.
  11. Yes, Culadasa talks about noting, labelling and body scanning but not the Shinzen Young's 'Gone' Technique. I've added that myself. He still has implicit instructions like 'Attend to the beginning, middle and 'end' of breath sensations'. In that instruction, he implicitly talks about the gone technique by focusing on the ending of the breath cycle. So his book does have a lot of amazing techniques. And all of these techniques revolve around the breath mastery. They all interlink because of this centralization.
  12. Yes but remember how the adept stages work at a fundamental level. They are no longer samadhi practices. One practice can help but it may not be enough. Culadasa might give the impression that advanced stages don't require that much effort so it is much faster to progress compared to the beginning stages time-wise. It makes sense on paper but this is not true. It is a common misconception. The effort one puts in to progress after chapter 7 gets lower and lower. That is true and that is because you let the effortless attention develop and become the default operating system. Surrender and non-striving is the name of the game in advanced practice. But it takes A LOT of time to re-program the body for stage 7-8-9-10 type of work. As Culadasa mentioned in an interview, A mature stage 8-9 practitioner can do 3-4 hour sits consistently with little to no suffering. Like daily 3-4 hour sessions. That is some serious mastery in my eyes. I can do 2 hour SDS sits. I can also deal with a lot of pain and suffering but I've never attempted a 3-4 hour sit. My equanimity levels are not that high. I still need more work in mental and physical pliancy. My nervous system can't quite work with pain on that level for 3-4 hours. Maybe I can do it on a chair if I really focus. And lets not forget that at least 1 insight has to be experienced until this point. These insight experiences are unpredictable and can happen in weird ways. So it takes even more time to understand and experience these insights. Culadasa also says that even though it is theoretically possible to go all the way up to stage 10 and still not experience any deep insight experience, in practice, most meditators will have at least 1 insight experience sometime in stage 6,7 or 8. Definitely before stage 9. So if someone claims to solidly attain stage 8-9 and still saying that he didn't have any sort of transitory awakening experience, (or any deep experience like Arising and Passing Away or temporary cessation), then I'd be suspicious. He probably peaked into stage 8-9 and then went back to an early stage as his baseline. The first stages are actually faster to go through compared to adept stages. Even though you exert more effort, at least the goals are like a to do list. In stage 7 and beyond, everything turns into mastery of the existing skills + insight practice and as a consequence, the nervous system needs even more time and practice to handle the mastery requirements. So it is a mistake to think it is so easy to progress from stage 7 to 8 by doing only one or two practice. That also applies to stage 9 to 10. One's progress will get slower post-stage 6-7. These adept stages are all very deep attainments and you can spend a year or two for each stage before moving on. And if you did that, you'd have awakening experiences on a consistent basis. And that tends to translate into 7-10 years of diligent practice as Culadasa says in his book. That is a good time frame to expect significant results and transformation. If one doesn't experience these, then they don't do the TMI techniques properly. On that level, the bare minimum would be consistent but transient insight experiences and that is way more than what your average meditator experiences after 20-30 years of practice. That is why I recommend Culadasa so much. His methods shave off decades of spiritual anguish with clear skill based goals.
  13. That is great. I'm happy for you. I'm re-reading it myself these days to brush up on the fundamentals. Remember that to develop stable attention properly, you also need to expand the awareness as well. If you try to practice exclusive attention pre-stage 6, you'll fail and instead experience dullness and distractions. Always add in the awareness component (like body noting, scanning, gone technique etc.) while maintaining bright and stable concentration at the tip of nose. First, start with stable attention and when the mind starts to create dullness and distractions, start expanding introspective and extrospective awareness. Good luck
  14. Float tanks can put you in certain deep jhanic absorptions and concentration states naturally with little effort. I assume this because I've never experienced it personally and I don't live in an environment where I can have access to it easily. Definitely recommend it though. From what people who've tried it say that float tanks tend to reduce the sense of self with inducing less sensitivity to where the skin ends and the 'outer' world starts. That can also potentially induce profound relaxation and insight experiences of no self. Also since we are talking about insights, do you remember my earlier posts on my own insight experience of no self in profound relaxation? Well, it's been about a month since that experience and I've come to see its permanent effects in my life. My sense of self is reduced from its baseline. Just like how concentration can be developed as a baseline, so can the separate sense of self one identifies with gets reduced as a baseline. It is like a small piece of this constructed identity is gone and a crack has been opened with a higher baseline in equanimity. I assume that when a sufficient piece of this sense of being a self goes away, stream entry occurs permanently. I still feel the same experience with or without concentration the day of my insight experience. This sort of thing never happened to me before. There is a deeper intuitive side of insight penetration that doesn't exist in 'only concentration' practices. Or in meditation highs. I still mostly feel like a self interacting with other separate entities in the hopes of pursuing happiness and running away from pain. (The survival game as Leo talks about). I still suffer just as much as the next guy. Maybe slightly less and with more equanimity. But I know that when I take a step back and expand the awareness, this whole worldview starts to be seen as a mental construction. The self is not fixed and singular. It is multi-parted and impermanent. It has a vast continuum of intensity and depth. It is an activity that moves and morphs around because it is a mental construct as much as anything else. It can be reduced or emphasized depending on one's state of consciousness. Anyways, these are my current follow up experiences since that last awakening experience. There are permanent changes going on and my practice is going really well. As I've suspected earlier, this is not stream entry. Probably some parts of my mind has integrated this insight to a sufficient degree but apparently the majority of the mind system hasn't deeply intuited no-self to a permanent degree. Culadasa says that with deeper practice from stage 7 to stage 10, these insights will get integrated by more parts of the mind and then stream-entry will occur. The permanent deal. I'm still in stage 7. Sometimes peaking to stage 8. Had 2 very deep insight experiences into no self. And I can't wait to see where this will all lead me. My current experiences suggest the possibility of this technique really working in the long run. So that is why I want more people to try Culadasa's methods.