Finally, Freakin’ Vibrations

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Without having the particular experience of something, the explanations in Buddhism can seem kind of obtuse.

Even though the Noting Meditation seems bizarre to me, I’ve still been doing it because, well, it’s a good idea to give it a go.

So tonight, I was doing Concentration Meditation instead, and I got into what was probably the 3rd Jhana. I’m reluctant to claim 4th Jhana at this point because my visualizations don’t really come to a vivid, stable image, and that’s supposed to be a 4th Jhana characteristic, but it may also have to be built up.

Anyway, I didn’t exactly switch to Insight Meditation, but suddenly, I stopped trying so hard, and I started experiencing vibrations.

The vibrations aren’t terribly strong, and in some ways, they aren’t what I expected- it was more a sense of what it’s like to be in the ocean, with the waves rising and falling and be moved around by the current of the water. That’s what the experience was like, and it continued, though the currents weren’t from any one particular direction, and they were CONSTANTLY changing. So, impermanence was definitely something I experienced, but impermanence seems to be something I live through in daily life anyway.

So, yeah, I’m sticking with this Buddhist meditation thing because it’s for real.

Steve

Second, Third Jhana?

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In bed this morning, I was able to attain the first Jhana, just lying down and meditating. That’s encouraging. I made sure to focus on the pleasurable sensation and the allowed it to “grow” for lack of a better term and fill my body, and basically, I could feel the the “current” running through my body, in this case a “current” of pleasure.

I came out of the first jhana, got up for a while and had breakfast, and then spent some time with my husband and online.

My husband left to go to the gym, so I decided to take the opportunity to begin cleaning the house and sat down to meditate.

Again, I accessed the first jhana and stayed with the pleasure, allowing it to suffuse my body. Even then, it doesn’t ever feel “complete,” as there are gaps everywhere in the pleasure, but it’s still substantial and something I can see a person wanting to maintain all the time.

So I decided to try to shift to the second jhana, which is done by moving from the physical sensation of pleasure to the emotional component. That’s easier said than done because we often experience our emotions on the more physical level.

But lo and behold, the “shift” moved me into what I might call the “warm fuzzies.” While the first jhana and the pleasure has a sense of being almost sexual and in the lower chakras (though it can felt everywhere; this is my experience), the second jhana (or what I think might be the second jhana) radiates more from the heart is…”fluffier.” That’s a good word for it. The emotional content is like being on a cloud or a bunch of pillows or something; very lofty.

That felt great, and I could see myself staying at the second jhana for the rest of my life.

However, today I felt ballsy, so I decided to jump to the next jhana, the third jhana, and…I’m not sure entirely sure what happened, it’s just kind of more of like stillness. The “warm fuzzies” go away even though there’s some echo of them and the pleasure sensations, and of course thoughts still arise here and there and such; that’s fine, because there’s not really an attachment to them, and it’s easy at that point to maintain focus.

Again, I’m not entirely sure that was the third jhana or maybe even the second jhana, but I’m fairly confident that I’ve attained the first jhana.

I tried insight meditation as well in these states, trying to see the Three Doors and so on, and the impermanence aspect seems blatantly apparent because none of this is perfectly still or stable, and I can kind of see the anatta aspect as if I’m experiencing it, it can’t be the experiencer, per se, and the suffering aspect is that these states, while lovely, aren’t complete; they haven’t finished or aren’t perfect, no matter how wonderful they feel.

I could be doing the insight meditation entirely wrong, which is fine as I’ll eventually figure it out.

But yeah, this is all pretty much fun and something worthwhile and a map that finely seems worth following.

Steve