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Enlightenment Talk

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posted on Mar, 25 2009 @ 04:36 PM
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This is a thread to discuss the eastern concept of Enlightenment (not the western concept of intellectual enlightenment) called Satori and Kensho in Japanese Buddhism, called Bodhi and Nirvana in Tibetan Buddhism, called Moksha in Hinduism and called Awakening/Enlightenment in westernized versions of these thoughtstreams.

As a long-time Meditator I've experienced several states similar to what these Traditions claim is "Enlightenment" (outrageous states of bliss, non-duality, infinite awareness, etc.) Because of those experiences I am also wary of many millions of misconceptions I hear people, "teachers", "gurus" and books utter on the subject.

As someone aware of the entire spectrum I feel confident to answer questions on it (or at least more competent on the subject than someone who only knows the idea from reading books) but Im also happy to listen to the realizations others have made. If you do want to give answers and pointers to the subject I´d prefer them to be based on your personal experience and not something you read or heard somewhere.

Looking forward to Enlightenment Talk.

[edit on 25-3-2009 by Skyfloating]




posted on Mar, 25 2009 @ 04:49 PM
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I'm not sure if this is to do with enlightenment or not, but i have a litle question anyway, maybe you've had a simular experience.

Have you ever heard a tone. Like a musical chord played on a church organ? I'm not talking about the vibrational tones of the spirit/physical body. Like actual chords played on a church organ. In a continous non stop tone. Sort of like 2 chords really, and they were pitched quite low, with one having a hint of high pitchedness to it. I noticed it once, after a meditation, not during. I'd sat back at the computer, and was reading something or other (probably a thread on here) and I realised I could hear it. At first, I was contentto just let it chime, but then as I became aware that I was aware of it (if that makes sense) and tried to hone in on where it might be coming from, the second I tried to find it, it faded out. It's never happened again. Was that connected to my meditation (chakra meditation is what I was doing) or was it simply a figment of my imagination?

thanking you kindly


edit to add, they sounded reeeeaaaally far away,but also like it was coming from the room.


[edit on 25/3/2009 by Acidtastic]



posted on Mar, 25 2009 @ 04:56 PM
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reply to post by Acidtastic
 


Well yeah. All kinds of phenomena happen in Meditation, especially when one "gets out of the way" and just lets whatever happens happen. I've heard that specific spaceless organ-drone before. And I'm glad you mention it because I've never read any mention of it anywhere before.

I also find it interesting that you say "as soon as I honed in on it it faded away". It seems to be pretty common that all kinds of fantastic stuff happens...until you start trying to hold on to it...

As for what it is...I dont know.

[edit on 25-3-2009 by Skyfloating]



posted on Mar, 25 2009 @ 05:19 PM
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Good, it wasn't me turning slightly gaga then. Interesting how it's not written about, as I'm now going to presume that other people have experienced this too.

Thank you, you've given me something to ponder. I wonder if I can get it to happen again. Watch this space.....



posted on Mar, 25 2009 @ 05:59 PM
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The Thing I find most interesting from personal experience is that when people do actually have a very very strong and total experience,

Be it of non duality or merging, oneness or no name no labels,

Or true emotionally and not conceptual states such as Bodhichitta,

Or when as you have mentioned in other threads Sky that the facade starts dropping away, and it seems like a program, like a film, the awareness of in between the frames of a film as such when the awareness of arising of phenomina becomes a bit apparent. When it all starts going bright and Shiney, Midfullness

After each of these experiences, it has pushed my commitment further to totally change my life and follow it more, to go that bit further, to break it down more, well what I am trying to understand is how anyone who has these experiences does not make it the main and total focus of their life there after, and is keen to drop all mundane things as the illusion becomes more apparent, and less appealing by the day.

I am very interested in how other people have experienced non duality esp, for a long time I had the traditional subject object, then eventually that broke down, and it was I thought the end of that type of practise, but the times got longer, and merging more pronounced, it was and is nice and changed how I view reality. I continued for many years.

However it was only after I brought in an emotional aspect to it, namely Bodhichitta and practised this for a long time that one day not to long ago that a type of experience happened that IS bliss and total, very very profound. There was nothing to merge with, the bliss was unconditional love and it was and is everything everywhere I merged with that, was that and there was no seperation at all no body, no mind just love.

The experience was like taking the most intense orgasm ever experienced and making it stable and infinitely more pleasurable and beyond any words to explain. Oh and it was not a fuzzy spaced out dreamy either. It also lasted for some time more than just minutes.

I experienced it once before but during the merging of the light in an NDE.

This paled into insignificance the first fruits I had experienced, and to be honest anyone who has ever had this could never say anything about outrageous claims or such like. I find a lot of people get caught up as there is the ultimate stumbling block to this, which can only be obtained by dropping the ego, through sacrifice, daily selfless service, letting go of all grasping to anything "out there" and desire. Well that is how it has happened for me anyhow, maybe others could reach it another way.

To have that experience on a longterm 24/7 basis is personally what I would call heaven/nirvana whatever (unless there is more past this I don't know) and not enlightened, as I had no amazing insight into the dynamics of the basic building blocks of consciousness past those mentioned above, no flowers falling from heaven lol, no meeting with spirit tempters or such like. Just that all is well, all truly is bliss and love and there is no out there or in here, just pure intense love. Words do not convey it, and having had rising bodhichitta before etc, and general joys of meditation both mental and physical, really it was on a different scale and felt like my NDE experience.

I am different after it but there is no white glow around me and I certainly am unable to perform miracles there has been no supermundane experiences (though supermundane events have happened over the years once or twice well before this, slightly).

I miss practise and meditation more than anything I used to grasp to in life before, relationships, money, hobbies, all mean nothing now, except helping others.

Anyone who has experienced this could never ever be satisfied with anything worldy ever again, except loving others. And be driven to want to get to that place again for longer and longer. And learn hwo to be able to get others there, which I have no way of doing as such yet except to help people start their own practise.

Kind Regards,

Elf

PS the organ drone is part of siddhis I had a very high pitched buzz that started as a low drone for a few months in late 2000, was very annoying there is a thread on here somewhere someone heard something similar about it I replied to. It seems strange some people I know who have practised for years as well, get all sorts of stuff coming up, either visually, auditory or emotionally usually only after a few years of real daily practise, at least an hour or more. It sometimes even impinges on non practise life and becomes a "friend" as such in your face during normal life, but eventually seems to go away. Some get psychic stuff loads, spirits channelling etc, clairvoyance etc some none or a mix. I think all are just distractions (exp spirits and supermundane ignore them, let them go, they are just good signposts you are getting there, on the right path, but following that path of them stops the progress so close to the goal.) just let it all work out and go, let go of them, focus again, be mindful.



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 04:05 AM
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My greatest achievement I believe is letting go of my mind. It happened after years of trying to become "the observer" and studying/practicing ahimsa (nonviolence) and anatta (non-self or no-self). It is also the most difficult and frightening, to have answers come to you without actual logical reasoning. Not only because of giving up control, but also because it implies I am not the thinker, or creator just a translator. It is like reverse engineering, many times it feels like I'm a monkey trying to fit a star shaped symbol in a hole the shape of a cube.

Whatever enlightenment is, it is not good for your social relations, unless you can be "real" without giving others the feeling you're hiding some part of yourself and if you manage to avoid the pit of arrogance which so many people seem to go for once they have 1 or 2 genuine experiences.



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 06:23 AM
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Originally posted by MischeviousElf

After each of these experiences, it has pushed my commitment further to totally change my life and follow it more, to go that bit further, to break it down more, well what I am trying to understand is how anyone who has these experiences does not make it the main and total focus of their life there after, and is keen to drop all mundane things as the illusion becomes more apparent, and less appealing by the day.



here's my take on what you mention here,for what it's worth.i'm not saying anything here relates to you or anyone else,this is just my own experience.

a short history of how i "got there",and then what happened afterwards.

i was a kid maybe 7 or 8,sitting with other kids in a classroom.spacing out as usual,then bam.."it",whatever it is,happened.i was a kid,i didn't have a clue what just happened..and still don't i guess.anyway for months after i thought about it non-stop,then as the years passed it faded into memory and i basically stopped thinking about it till my 20's.

i'd heard of people having "experiences" while meditating and thought maybe i can replicate what happened that way.i tried a few different things i'd read about,nothing happened,spectacular failure.

a few years later the job i was doing had me travelling to various building sites,and i'd sometimes run into this guy who was always cool to chat with.totally serene,had an aura about him.so one time it comes up in conversation that he's a martial arts instructor and could teach me to meditate if i wanted.immediately i knew that he knew what he was talking about,his demeanour made sense now.so he taught me how to do it.

i did it for a month or 2,then bam,it happened again.

several months passed and i began to feel that nothing in everyday life mattered.i lost interest in everything,and i mean everything.i was depressed,and after realising that,i couldn't figure out why i should be.

after a couple of years i figured out that,imo,everything in everyday life is awesome.from the ecstasy/agony on a football field,to the ecstasy/agony of a musical composition,to sitting on a beach watching the waves,to standing underneath an electrical storm(my personal favourite)whatever..it's all just so great.

to anyone who hasn't had this experience yet and is reading this,it's not something that will magically take you away to "buddha-land" forever.it's a really cool experience that made me re-evaluate..things.that's all,again imo.cool thread.



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 11:24 AM
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Originally posted by MischeviousElf
After each of these experiences, it has pushed my commitment further to totally change my life and follow it more, to go that bit further, to break it down more, well what I am trying to understand is how anyone who has these experiences does not make it the main and total focus of their life there after, and is keen to drop all mundane things as the illusion becomes more apparent, and less appealing by the day.


Since its one of the most real and fulfilled things a human can experience that question does arise. But I've been thinking that maybe the earth-experience is not meant to be that and thats why most dont care much for it...



I am very interested in how other people have experienced non duality esp, for a long time I had the traditional subject object, then eventually that broke down,


For me: First there was me observing or being aware, and then there was only observing-ness. Make sense?



However it was only after I brought in an emotional aspect to it, namely Bodhichitta and practised this for a long time that one day not to long ago that a type of experience happened that IS bliss and total, very very profound. There was nothing to merge with, the bliss was unconditional love and it was and is everything everywhere I merged with that, was that and there was no seperation at all no body, no mind just love.


No-thing in the world can compete with that type of bliss. The paradox is, that when you experience it you realize it always has been there. We seem to experience it as "coming and going", but it actually does not. Putting this into words is...well...



which can only be obtained by dropping the ego, through sacrifice, daily selfless service, letting go of all grasping to anything "out there" and desire. Well that is how it has happened for me anyhow, maybe others could reach it another way.


...or by realizing there is no such thing as an "ego" and therefore nothing to drop, and there is no such thing as an absolute self and therefore no selflessness.
"Ego" and "Self" are still terms within duality, somehow...



To have that experience on a longterm 24/7 basis is personally what I would call heaven/nirvana whatever (unless there is more past this I don't know) and not enlightened,


Thats another paradox though: How to confine something timeless into a 24/7 "long term" thing....



I am different after it but there is no white glow around me and I certainly am unable to perform miracles there has been no supermundane experiences (though supermundane events have happened over the years once or twice well before this, slightly).


I really do think that having to be a monk or having to have some glow or some ascension or anything other are just misconceptions. Im a normal everyday person too.



Anyone who has experienced this could never ever be satisfied with anything worldy ever again, except loving others.


On the other hand...polarizing between "spirit" and "worldly" is yet another false duality, right?




PS the organ drone is part of siddhis I had a very high pitched buzz that started as a low drone for a few months in late 2000, was very annoying there is a thread on here somewhere someone heard something similar about it I replied to


Thanks for shedding light on this. So it is known in the literature.




but eventually seems to go away.


On this path one does seem to go through a "psychic phase". And those who dont get attached to it move on beyond...



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 11:32 AM
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Reply to Dragonfly:

Cool post. Im aware of the enlightenment vs. social relations thing. I think it only becomes a problem with people who...again (as mentioned toward MElf)...polarize between "worldly" and "spiritual".

I think thats one of those misconceptions...



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 11:34 AM
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Originally posted by aylyan
to anyone who hasn't had this experience yet and is reading this,it's not something that will magically take you away to "buddha-land" forever.it's a really cool experience that made me re-evaluate..things.that's all,again imo.cool thread.


I agree with the assessment that heightened states need not be "la-la-land-thing" but simply an increased sense of awareness and enjoyment...even of "mundane" things.



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 12:24 PM
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I understand that this is a little bit off topic from dualities and buddhic states, (which by the way made me realize that I have definitely NOT reached my limit, and also made it much clearer on why I can do telekinesis and see auras) But, I was wondering if you have had any experience with astral projection and if so, could you give me any pointers.

Heres my experience with it.

I was lying in the bed and I felt tingling all over my body and I tried to lift myself out of my body, when I did I saw the ceiling and as soon as I saw that it felt like a brick wall just slammed into me at 50 mph and then my astral body went back into my physical, then I opened my eyes and it felt like another brick wall hit me. Afterwards I was tired and it was difficult to move. Like I had just woken up from a coma. So then I just went to sleep.

If you can, would you share any of your experiences or give me some advice? It would be much appreciated.

Peace



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 12:56 PM
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Originally posted by Skyfloating

Originally posted by MischeviousElf
After each of these experiences, it has pushed my commitment further to totally change my life and follow it more, to go that bit further, to break it down more, well what I am trying to understand is how anyone who has these experiences does not make it the main and total focus of their life there after, and is keen to drop all mundane things as the illusion becomes more apparent, and less appealing by the day.


Since its one of the most real and fulfilled things a human can experience that question does arise. But I've been thinking that maybe the earth-experience is not meant to be that and thats why most dont care much for it...


I would agree with what Skyfloating said in that it is not what this experience is wholly about. And I would go further to say that to pursue these things as a life-long goal is just as out of balance as it is to be completely absorbed within material pursuits.

To pursue a mindset that neglects the state and cycle we exist in is inherently egoistic. Much like absorption into drugs, sex, food or any of the other natural pursuits which feed the feelings of bliss inherent in being human.

All of which are fine in the context of experience and the necessary maintenance of the experience, even an experience exclusively of joy and pleasure. But absorption of the whole mind in these activities as pursuits in and of themselves is a denial of the perfection of our existence as it exists. It's rather like saying, "Well, this is all a mistake, so I have to escape."

These are conclusions I came to after experiences like those described here. To describe them would not do them justice but sensations of "oneness", total comprehensive bliss of the mind, body and spirit, are a way to describe it. But when the feeling faded I was naturally left with the idea of "What now?" The answer is simple: Live. Questioning this, I was lead to another simple question. Why did Gautama Buddha become a teacher? Why didn't he spend his remaining life in deep meditation? The answer came to me as pure compassion. Not only for his fellow humans, but for himself. Because it isn't what we do that makes us whole but rather it is what makes us more aware of it.

Existence is the answer to the question that is eternity. And all life, all deed, all action, both the for and non of all things are the correct answer. The purpose of balance is not to achieve oneness, but to achieve happiness. Oneness exists whether we "think" about it or not, whether we are enlightened or not. Who are we to think we can change the nature of the universe by our petty lives? We can't, but we can make the journey more pleasant.

[edit on 26/3/09 by TravelerintheDark]



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 04:21 PM
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Liking the deep thought put into this thread. Thanks all.

TravelerintheDark: I have a tendency to see the whole thing in a similar light.

The plane flies. Then it lands. Then what? Live. And then, fly again. And then what? Live. And then? Fly some more. And then what? Fly. And then land.

Since the concept of "All is One" excludes nothing it does not exclude normal life either.



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 04:37 PM
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once iw as sitting in a corner meditating and when i inhaled in a particular moment the walls creaked around me and simultaneously a motorcycle on a nearby road accelerated. all three things happend at the same moment and ended at the same moment.

alot of times i find myself meditating while driving and listening to music. i'll notice all of teh sudden that i've just mapped out a path around my immdediate area and have covered it until i felt it was all warm and fuzzy.

are we adding drug induced experiences into the mix? i'd imagine not because that would change things quite a bit. (sorry about the british accent but i've been watching that hypno guy frmo britain all afternoon and i can't help it can i?)

something i've also noticed through meditation was hwo tense my tongue can be. i never noticed it before but through meditation and light chanting, after a few mintues of it, i noticed just how much stress is there. when the vocal chords and tongue relax there's a whole multitude of sounds that happen.



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 05:03 PM
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Originally posted by Mozzy
are we adding drug induced experiences into the mix?


Nope. Check out the ATS Terms and Conditions.

Nice personal account though



posted on Mar, 26 2009 @ 05:27 PM
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Some good points Sky and all, much for me to ponder I am sure will add more esp relating material V's Spiritual as mentioned as they are one anyhow but ultimately empty to, and that is really what I mean by making it a total absorbtion.

From what I have read and spoken to very advanced Yogi's about, there is more past what we have described, and that is total Emptiness which has levels within itself maybe it is bliss 24/7.

Anyhow on the text's for Sky and all on the Siddhi or experience of the sounds it is found in the Hindu descriptions first, and as there is a debate developing on the Spiritual against Worldly, if any distinction as pointed out exists at all except in perception.

I thought therefore it would be only balanced to bring in the Goddess Lakshmi of the Hindu pantheon and her description of it.

She is the one who bestows rich's, and is depicted with coins emanating from here hands and notes or money, she bestows these upon here practitioners apparently if followed correctly. The used method of basic nature involves chanting her Mantra with a visualisation of her above your head forward by the crown with the coins falling into your third eye. BEWARE she will as easily take away if your motivation is greed and you approach her thinking you can hide your true desire HONESTY is needed about why you would want her to ease this type of suffering. IF you approach her wanting money to boost your EGO what you desire to boost will be taken away! Really do not meddle with this, esp those just skimming this with no prior practise, and take this as a hobby, devotion is needed and it is a path in itself.

Anyhow the Siddhi/experience is called Anahata also known as


The unstruck Note
in the Hindu tradition is found in the Kundalini texts and many more. It can be imagined to from the "Choirs of Angels" singing and such like in other traditions of the middle east, and Conch shells being heard in Buddhism during auspicious births across a large area by many thousands

On an individual practitioners level, at our level, very low on this Siddhi realisation of Anahata it is described by Lakshmi in the


Saubhagyu Lakshmi Upanishad




Clear and Flawless then is Heard the note
in Cleansed Susumna's channel.

11 v 5
In Anahata, then,
Resonant with strange notes, a sound is heard.
Sacred becomes the yogin's body; thus
With splender filled and odour heavenly
He is ill no longer;

Saubhagyu Lakshmi Upanishad PDF on Scribd

Kind Regards,

Elf.
elf edit to add "the unstruck note"

[edit on 26-3-2009 by MischeviousElf]



posted on Mar, 27 2009 @ 12:38 AM
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reply to post by Skyfloating
 

Hey, Sky


Here's my two-cents ...


This is a thread to discuss the eastern concept of Enlightenment ... called Bodhi and Nirvana in Tibetan Buddhism ...

This "bodhi" and "Nirvana" are both sanskrit technical terms which, like many, many others in that language have no direct translation into english.

The term used in the Tibetan Mahayana to describe the ultimate goal of practice is "Buddahood," which translates into english, more or less as "perfect enlightenment."

Such a state of perfect enlightenment is absolutely inconcievable to anybody who has not yet achieved that state, and so in the teachings it is actually discussed very little. The term is mentioned but it's qualities or attributes are rarely touched on. Really, when you think about it, to discuss perfect enlightenment is basically pointless since it is an inconcievable state entirely beyond any subject-object paradigms upon which any use of spoken or written language must be predicated.

Indeed, once beyond the subject-object paradigm any discussion of even conciousness itself is problematic. For instance, if there is no subject and no object, what is there even to be concious of or what is it which would even be conscious ?

For example, according to Patanjali we have -


Asamprajnata Samadhi

asamprajnata - unconscious samadhi

Source : Hinduism Sanskrit Dictionary V

This would be the Hindu view of the matter, while on the other hand Robert Thurman, who is of the Mahayana Buddhist persuasion, has translated ancient Tibetan scriptures referring to roughly the same state as the "space-like equipoise," which, after said state has concluded, is followed by, again according to Thurman's translation, the "dream-like aftermath."

Admittedly these are pretty fine points which may only have interest for the specialist ... but still, IMHO, they are worth emphasizing.

As far as any 'personal experiences' to contribute to the discussion, it's only my best guess at what might be appropriate here, but maybe the following will be ok -

I once spent a few years living in northern India where I more or less adopted the local lifestyle. It took me, a completely wound up American, after I had arrived there about four-months' time to fully decompress. My diet became almost 100% vegetarian, consisting of foods grown or produced entirely locally, quite nearby the upper Ganges river. I was getting a lot of exercise and zero television. My entire body changed. But there were more subtle changes going on too.

My interests soon led me to an edition of the 2nd Chapter of Patanjali's Yoga Sutras, containing not only Veda Vyasa's classic commentary, but the commentary of a local Swami, Veda Bharati. It was in Swamiji's commentary, for instance that I first saw the human body referred to as "instrumentation." This english commentary is a veritable treasure-trove of insight into the Sanskrit language's lexicon of precision terms for the mind's architecture and for yogic technology. I highly recommend it, if you can ever find a copy.

Another very interesting technical term the commentary explained in english was, "buddhi," which it translated as, "the power of the instrumentation of seeing."

But, I digress ...

Anyway, after I'd been over there about 18-months, studying this commentary, among many other treatises of Indian origin, as well as existing on the aforementioned diet which also contained a good healthy amount of certain agricultural products which are to remain nameless here on the ATS boards, living the shanti life as they say there, something very odd began happening. Namely, that I began to experience what Patanjali refers to as my own "subtle impurities" manifesting as "external obsticles." Just like it says in the books ... From time to time this experience was practically uninterrupted for days at a time.

I don't even know what it really means. I've only mentioned this before to a very limited number of close friends, and am not even sure it's a great idea to mention it here. But, there it is. Whatever ...

I am sure this sounds pretty weird, and I am not even going to try to explain what the experience was like. It's one of those things you just sort of have to see for yourself.



posted on Mar, 27 2009 @ 06:02 AM
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Originally posted by visible_villain
reply to post by Skyfloating
 

Hey, Sky


Here's my two-cents ...


This is a thread to discuss the eastern concept of Enlightenment ... called Bodhi and Nirvana in Tibetan Buddhism ...

This "bodhi" and "Nirvana" are both sanskrit technical terms which, like many, many others in that language have no direct translation into english.


It appears impressive, some words don't have an english counterpart, suggesting sanskrit is superior. But in the end it is a clever way to try and convince others that buddhist thought is superior to any other. You can tie all kinds of english words together to try and verbalize a state of mind which the Asian have dubbed nirvana, but it will never be same as what nirvana means because it's not possible to accurately describe that in such a primitive language.

It is roughly the same as saying Allah is superior than God and because of this the word God may not be used to address Allah.



posted on Mar, 27 2009 @ 09:39 AM
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Originally posted by MischeviousElf
The Thing I find most interesting from personal experience is that when people do actually have a very very strong and total experience,

Be it of non duality or merging, oneness or no name no labels,



S & F .

This is of great interest to me. This merging, absolute bliss with one, its amazing but what is it? With who/what am I merging with, the source, my higher self maybe my higher twin flame? In Western society its very hard to even talk of these things, Ive tryed but people say it must be black magic, few seem to understand...good job your all here


Thanks skyfloating for what is an excellent thread.



posted on Mar, 27 2009 @ 09:43 AM
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OH goodie I'm game.

Is there a wrong way to meditate?



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