With a focus on the Tibetan, Nepalese, and Mongolian forms of Mahayana Buddhism
I've been searching Buddhist forums for discussions of the state referred to as Samadhi. No results so far.
My experience to date:
- its a result of stopping doing things we are already doing. This is a big challenge for most westerners … we are saturated from birth with non stop "go go go, do this do that, acquire this 'n that.
- it seemed like having twice as many brain cells, every one focussed flawlessly where ever attention is focussed. All other content (residue of personal history, concerns of daily life, any future issues) goes dormant, silent. Utter quiescence, focus into the moment only, stability far beyond all prior concepts of stability.
- most westerners require "preliminary practices" ie any activity that quiets the incessant mental agitation and instability that makes total mental quiescence inaccessible.
- I had to be in total good health, clean of all consciousness altering, I had to start getting the best sleep I've ever gotten in my life, all those things in order to maximally marshall the focus of my mind.
Always attracted to Zen, I required greater structure, a specific recipe for internal process from Tibetan trained westerner … after:
- decades of work to quiet down the usual western, non stop, neurotic mental agitation and instability that is life in the west.
- it is a radical simplification. We seem very attached to our kookoo endless, non stop mental BS.
- oddly enough I gather favorable experiences with psychedelics are almost a manditory preparation for most of us westerners. ON a really good day, they can furnish:
- a temporary coarse approximation of a samadhi like state
- its well known one passes through an intensely harrowing period in which the " all the rotting corpses are dredged up from the mud of your psyche." Your own mind assaults you with periods during which you feel your are going insane. That process was strikingly similar to the challenging hours on a psychedelic. If you have been there on a psychedelic and made it through without shutting down you can make it through with greater ease.
This is my experience from decades work ending suddenly unexpectedly in Samadhi, a "healing" of the mind.
Last edited by Rocket on Wed Dec 25, 2013 2:48 pm, edited 2 times in total.
I can verify for you that it can and by definition, does.
Experience is the key to this understanding. Until one has it commetary makes no sense.
I gather not too many westerners have a full experience of samadhi. Those who do are changed forever. Ones conviction becomes absolute
I suggest withold arguement until solid experience is under the belt.
The process of getting there requires cleaning the "house of the mind" ….. clearing out the rubble which all by itself heals the mind.
As long as you have this mind to be healed, it will bite you nastily once your samadhi is over.
See the proof of God at the peak of samsara, neither perception nor non perception.
Even this formless God, the champion of samadhi, will sick in hell someday.
Through nonconceptuality, he is immovable.
Dude, don't be offended now. I'm not going to respond to you any more.
Hi Rocket, welcome to the forum
Samadhi and its uses are much discussed in Buddhism and in Zen. There are ppl active on this forum with much knowledge and experience.
Until they chime in, I can give you a starting point.
In Zen samadhi is about becoming one. The path of Zen is traditionally from (1)scattered mind - to (2)unified mind (samadhi) - to (3)no-self.
There are several states of samadhi, the "highest" has the most subtle sense of self. Yet in samadhi the self is, however subtle, still present. Therefore it is not the goal of Buddhism which is no-self. Still very useful and stage on the path.
From my own curiosity. Which method did you use? Why do you call it a healing of the mind? What is healed?
Thanks for the starting point, my life has been brought to total fulfillment by this experience. Its pure experience, it's not a head trip, a list of differnet states. Its a direct experience of reality, of ones own mind, with all noise, instability taken out of the picture.
I was trained and utilize what in Tibetan buddhism is called Shamatha. My experience: its the direct route to Samadhi. The first weekend I got competent training (competent is rare) I had a profound trance like deep state of Samadhi. I spent decades prior to that in preparation , not even knowing it. Most westerners are too mentally agitated to make use of great training even if they do find it, and its rare.
Healing: about 90% of all negative emotions, mental noise, agitation, instability, have disappeared from my day to day experience. The space of the mind becomes like a collossal, crystal clear empty open space.
One can argue the points and I'm sure there are different realities for individuals. My experience has been without ambiguity of any kind.
How would you describe your experience of samadhi? Have you ever experienced it? Honestly it does not sound to me like you are coming from experience.
So far every Buddhism website forum I have found was owned by someone who was trying to look like they knew more about Buddhism and mind states than they do. It just the nature of the beast. Anyone with a keyboard and a web connect to take a shot at looking knowlegaable.
That means nothing about the owner or inhabitants of this site. It is my past experience. the first response to this post doesn't look too encouraging…..
Buddhism the "head trip" can be interesting, but vastly moreso, if informed by buddhism the direct experience.
Some people pass by using Zennistic phrases to appear knowledgeable, but I think they are few here. If they are "too much" they get a warning. There are real people, some with serious experience under their belt. Others beginners but with genuine intent.
I'm happy to hear you have experienced such healing. I have not experienced it in such a way (yet) myself. I've had some blissful state in retreats, where it's just deeply fulfilling to be sitting. And just when meditating normally I'm comfortable with things coming and going.
rocket - can you explain what you mean by this?
The exposure to zen practice I've had involved little or no guidance as to what one does with the mind to "get somewhere". My mind is, or was 25 to 30 years ago when I was exposed to zen, way way too unstable.
Fast forward to 8 years ago after gobs of "preliminary practice" to get the gross instabilities of my mind quiet, then I got training from a Tibetan trained westerner, there was relatively close guidance and a specific process, mentally, one engages in to progress deeper. Not that easy but for sure the direct path to Samadhi.
They guy I learned from, Alan Wallace, was hand picked by the Dalai Lama who "summoned him" to Dharmsala … requested to become his teacher. Then over a total of 40 years now Alan was ordained, trained by the DL, and under tutilage of two dozen senior living Tibetan lineage holders… the Dalai Lamas buddies presumably.
Zen is fine, a few zen priests are onto deeper practice. The endpoint objective is the same, not too many zennies are getting there, not too many anybodies are getting there as far as I've seen. Westerners on the whole are too jacked up, too unstable so when the do sititng practice thier minds never get down into to that state of totally profound relaxation and stability of mind, totally still yet 100% present to the moment. Its amazing.
We westerners are special needs students in my view.
Michael, are you offended, maybe wanting to initiate a little challenge? Sounds like it.
Hows your samadhi? Blissed out folks never want to argue.
Hell no - I am well past being offended by the written word.
I do not believe any Zennie would say that s/he was into a 'deeper' practice - or superior in any way. We do not think in such a manner. We are Hobos. We may take time out - still, in a boxcar, but the boxcar keeps moving.
Right now I cannot relate in any way to what you refer to as Samadhi. I am writing, listening to classical on a Christmas morning.
I do suggest you hang around here. Maybe we can both learn something. The way I am seeing it you may be misunderstanding Zen practice. No problem with that we all do - regularly
That was honest. Cannot relate to samadhi….
I'm not here to learn about zen …. I'm full up with the things I do have from practice.
I'm here to discuss and see what is happening with folks on this board.
I wipe my arse with samadhi.
"What is inherent in you is presently active and presently functioning, and need not be sought after, need not be put in order, need not be practiced or proven.
All that is required is to trust it once and for all."
- Foyan, Instant Zen, pg. 23
The problem is that while whatever has happened in the past is important it is at the same time unimportant. The impact of the importance is what it is. Dwelling on it changes nothing.
How and when, and from what perception, do we deal with this? I feel it is better to let the teachers and scholars and scriptures write the words while we get on with what is important. We are privileged in this respect, no?
Fair enough. This a Tibetan thread on a Zen Buddhist forum. However I don’t know of any Tibetan practitioners who post regularly here. I find it difficult to respond from anything other than a Zen perspective.
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