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Culadasa: [00:00:00] Good evening once again, and thank you for coming. I hope you're all well, this in January evening.
So does anyone have any anything to. Speak about meditation practice.
English. Yes. Ma'am this.
Culadasa: Okay there's the top four different tendons that we're mentioning here. So you're using probably nearly a breath to help you to stay on sonnet. And that's a good technique. And is it working for you for long periods of
Culadasa: Yeah. And so usually the way it is because. After a certain point, the county becomes automatic and then it's not really contributing that much to helping you to keep your attention, but it certainly can be useful, and especially if you're having trouble standing on the grass for a significant period of time can help.
So it's a good technique, but I usually to. That you tried to count and consecutive threats starting over as often as you need to, but then once you reach 10, then follow the rest of us. How Karen, and then at first, if you lose Griff again for a long period of time, you might or might want to do another period of bounty.
But rather than just counting continuously, whenever you've done 10, it's good to start. Paul on the graph looks after. And I'm not even sure if you're asking about that or just telling me that's what you're doing, but then you also mentioned it. The breath becomes very quiet and deaths that is normal, that spirit period it's a good sign.
It does happen when. When the mind starts to, if I'm called and the grasp becomes calm as well, holiday, it reflects that. What does happen is that as the breath becomes more and more faint, it can become more difficult to continue to observe the sensations. And that's what you're finding. Yeah.
There are there are a few different things we can do about that.
Are you using the sensations of graphic tenders?
Okay. So what are you predominantly doing? What tends to have denied the abdomen? Okay if you were using the sensations of their backsides and nose I would have suggested that you might find the Sussex. Sensations of the abdomen might be a little stronger incarcerated and easier to follow since you are using those.
The other thing that you can do is is to perhaps the combination of the abdomen and the chest and the nose, you might be able to sense the breath more clearly, but it, there is one very useful thing to do. Is, if you find that your mind doesn't have a really strong tendency to, to wander or to go into tons of soft pasta says is tape.
Just continue to continue to try to detect the sensations that are produced by. Whether you do or not. And this is usually best when it's not completely gone. You maybe can still detect some part as a wrist sensation, British parts that you can't. And is that part of what your experiences? Yeah.
Then if your breath is that fine and it's in fact due to good concentration and not wandering a lot, then what you might do is you. Not be concerned with whether we do, you actually can detect every parts out of the grass sidewalk, but continue to observe everything that you can and in the spaces where you can't to continue to search for the sensations that are there and see if if your mind, at some point isn't able to sharpen up enough, picked up subtle sensate things.[00:05:00]
So these are some things to do. Now, when the breath has become very fine, that is there to call me in among the concentration. The other thing you have to watch out for is when the mind starts leading that call, there's a tendency for slipping. It's a dullness and that by itself makes it more difficult to perceive those sensations for.
So do be watched. Whether or not, that's part of what's happening. And if it is, you may need to do something to sharpen, we awareness the mind more alert.
Student: Okay. You're welcome. Yes.
Yes. I think Bob actually is here today. He had a similar space. It says. I've been finding that I've been able to get back to this place that I used to be able to get to a little more concentrated where I can it feels like I'm dropping into a next level, as far as the decisions of the breath feeling like they're really present large and in front of me pushing everything out to the periphery, but what I've found really helps with that.
And I think part of that is ignorance away from that was that if I bring an awareness, I visual. It feels like there's a stable context for the breadth and that, for some reason, that's like a gateway to getting to that point. And I don't know. It's not just using dispensation and it's not using body sensation.
You, if you don't really talk a lot about using visuals. It's not really interactive. It's just a kind that a sense of the visual field. But for whatever reason, it makes everything more stable. It seems to be the way I get into that. And I was wondering
Culadasa: about that. Are you, is it as though you are looking at the correct?
Student: not. They're almost two separate sensations. Are there it's like, where are the visual things? And I'm feeling the breath. And they're close enough spatially in my mind that they be together, but it's not a visual experience, the breath. So
Culadasa: is there any content to visual fields at all?
No, not really well. So let's see,
Most people find it helpful. When they're trying to focus on the sensations of the breath, if you are, for example, focusing on the sensations or the graphic and knows that you are, imagine that you were looking at the point where they are and that's not happening. And and of course your eyes don't actually go across and look at the end of the nose.
But you have that feeling as though you're looking at that both. Okay. Now, if that's what you're doing, then that's really good. That's Sorry, I didn't suggest that to the center.
Student: I don't know if I intentionally dropped the, but does it also the other concern, it feels like I'm putting a lot of effort into it to get to that.
It's almost like I have to really knuckle down and then I drop into that and then I can let go of it. And he's fall out of it now, but like after retreat I could stay in it, but it feels much more stable, but it feels sensors is that I'm getting to it through a visual sense to describe it.
Like I'm bringing vision in, but I'm not doing any emasculating or anything like that.
Culadasa: It sounds like what you're doing is very good. So yeah, even if there's a little extra effort. Yeah. That's that's fine. Especially if it's just some effort in the beginning and then you're able to do relax, but that sounds very good.
So by all means, continue with that.
Must be smart questions you hear?
What are we going to talk about Kim?
Student: Okay here. You said the dullness versus sharpening your mind, like you said, you mentioned
How do you tell a different side? Yeah, I can understand it, but just how would you be able to attack yourself, like with volumes to that place? Dullness distinguish what are some places that would distinguish that issue of awareness button realized? This also feels I see this as well.
So what is that?
Culadasa: Okay. That's a very good question. Okay. Being. [00:10:00] When you're relaxed, but alert than they does. The subject of stated your mind is one of ease, reflecting the relaxed that's. And of course, you'd probably find that also that your body's also a very relaxed. The state of ease though, that I'm talking about will not have any effect on the clarity of your perception and the sense of presence that you'd have with the with the meditation object, with the sensations that you're trying to.
When a dullness comes in, there's a feeling of distance and separation and looseness of you don't feel like you're really close and you're really fully present with the sensations. It's a speech Gilbert for vine. You don't feel as if you're really fully present and then on top and on top of and have a very clear grasp of of the object or the sensations, there's more a sense of distance and looseness and vagueness.
And that's an indication that they're installing this present. So to the word, it's the opposite. Of dullness is to have vividness, intensity clarity. Now, even though the sensations might become so so faint that sometimes they're there to indistinct for you quite to clearly discern If your mind is bright and alert, you'll have the sense that it's due to the faintness of the sensation of it's not due to any lack of sharpness of your mind.
Okay. So that's how you tell if it's very subtle now and. What we're talking about right here is dullness. That is subtle. And that's what it's doing is it's robbing you of some of that initial vividness and clarity. Usually what happens is if, when dullness begins to develop, it becomes stronger and stronger, so that at some time you start to find yourself a.
W at some point you likely to find yourself to sleep you out to me. But even before that, you might find that even though you're able, even when you're able to stay with the breath and follow it, if it just distorted and it's on characteristics that really do not belong to the sensation.
So the grant has founded a dream or call. Okay. So if you find yourself flipping again to stronger states, a dullness sleepiness, drowsiness, Jane, white quality, Dan, for sure that initial loss of parody you had was done by us. And that is what today's that progression doesn't happen 100% of the time.
And especially after people have been meditating, sometime they can they can stay in a fairly moderate dullness for a long period of time. But most of the time there is a progression there's other little cues that will help if you find that. Easily farm-to-table to, if there's a noise or something like that tastes plugs, and your body jerks and you have a startle reaction that too is another indication that you're probably experiencing dullness.
A person has to learn to recognize stop most of the time. When you, until you asked in our experience with recognizing most of the time on meditators, first clear perception that they're in dullness is going to be the jazzy mess of either something or the body and so forth. And to identify earlier is it's actually skill a little practice.
Whenever you find that there is stillness, then what you want to do is to re-energize the mind and whatever way you can. And there are a number of different ways of doing that. The, in the most subtle forms of dullness can be counteracted by just sharp, coming up, intentionally sharp. And after you're aware, breath intentionally.
Pursuing an awareness of detail. I'm trying to bring the sensations that he perceived out more vividly, but often something stronger [00:15:00] than that is needed. Part of what takes us into dullness is loss of energy. If the. Is the fact that we would come very focused and sometime becoming expanding the scope of our awareness.
And for a period of time, just expanding your awareness to other bodily sensations or even embargo natural sounds and things like this will, will bring your mind back up to a state of alertness. And then you can refocus on things like opening your eyes, maybe meditating with your eyes open for awhile can be very.
And when when it becomes very fun, then you can do things that are much more thanks to the third being for the stance of stillness in your mind, like clenching your muscles and releasing them and taking deep breaths and letting them out slowly, things like that. Okay. But your objective is just to, to reawaken the mind, reenergize them on brand new.
To a stable state of alertness and do whatever you need to do to bring yourself back to that level of alertness, such that it stays there for several minutes. If you find you're immediately sinking back down into that panic Thomas, then you haven't really, you know how to take on a strong enough to intervention.
At that point, you need to do something a little more vigorous
Yes on their side of that agitation. Like sometimes I am meditating on the graph and, or honor the observation of my mind, which is quite still, it's not going out to different. Movements, but there's like this kind of energy that's like surging and it's almost there's almost like a feeling of I I should just get up and do something like not, and I should really do that, but it, agitation, but it's not agitation.
Like my mind is going to a million places. It's like more energetic. It's not peaceful death.
Culadasa: Yes. Exciting and an energy rising. And if I followed you correctly, this is happening when your mind is actually quite still. And your concentration is very good. Okay. This, that what you're experiencing.
There is there is a lot of energy that's generated when the mine, they spoke to us and it manifests, it can manifest physically in a variety of ways, including feeling like surges of energy you're taking place in your body. Some people will start jerking and twitching they're trembling or things like that.
But it also manifests at the act, a mental level in terms of a feeling of exciting. I a restlessness or just, the building up of an energy. This is all very good. So let that magnet go ahead and keep practicing the way you are and let that energy build up. I'd say there's a very good chance.
You're going to start feeling current set of energy, moving in your body, sort of Kundalini rising sort of experience. T circulating kind of experience. And if that happens just let it go, just ride with it and keep practicing and let it intensify. It's a very good sign and it leads to the development.
I ended up picky, which is often ancillary to rapture, severely wonderful, energetic joyful feeling it's fully developed. So this is a very good. Don't be concerned about it D be persistent in your practice and just let it develop and don't let it distract here.
Lately this lights or
Culadasa: something? Like light visually. Yeah. This is a very, that PTA has its physical component is a mental component. It also has a visual component which can take to a variety of forms. One of which is like flashes. For other people, they might see, floating dots of color or hours the, expand the contract with on bragger.
But. Lashes as though there was a lightning storm going on outside, you've kept your eyelids closed. That's a condom, no station. That too is part of the arising of TT. And it's the same way. Just let it happen.[00:20:00] You will naturally feel curious about it, but try not to let it distract you. Paint it as a positive.
But back then to allow yourself to become attached, to just know, knowing, okay, this is a sign of my improving concentration, but it happened. That's good. I'm pleased to hear that some, wherever you are at that point, I was developing a PT and it's a wonderful thing. You have sun by very nice meditation experience system with 42.
I don't get attached to, it just
Student: leads me. Yeah.
Culadasa: If you it's it's time for us to begin our sit now.