Starting Meditation

by Hazard1 min read24th Oct 201818 comments


Personal Blog

[Update] this intent has been put on hold. Check this comment for details. This note was put at the top, because whenever I see a post about "I'm going to do XYZ" my most burning question is always, "Well did they?"

I think since about last winter I've been convinced that there is something really interesting that comes from going deep down the path of meditation. Things like happiness is a chore, the little dragon is dead, Kensho, "My attempt to explain Looking", and Scott's review of Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha all were things that lead me to that conclusion.

I've had bouts of meditation practices in the past, the longest streak was perhaps a month, and I never got anywhere past, "Yeah, I do feel calmer throughout the day after having meditated, and sometimes I feel incredibly peaceful in the midst of meditation."

I am "trying to get enlightened", but as people have pointed out, it doesn't seem like that's a great frame of mind to be in throughout a practice. That's why I'm documenting my current goals and assumptions in this post, and then I'm going to forget about it for a while and look back in a few months and if things have changed.

Here's the plan:

  • 30 min time for meditation each morning, everyday.
  • Using The Mind Illuminated as a guide, going through the various stages.
  • Finishing reading the book over the next week.
  • Each week when I do my weekly review, check if I can foresee days where it will be hard to do morning meditation, and make alternate plans.
  • I will document any days I miss in the comments of this post.
  • I will document any changes in attitudes towards this whole endeavor in the comments

Things I Want

  • Fewer moments of feeling like consciousness is a burden.
  • I've got a ton of strong curiosity about how minds actually work and what's really going on in my head, and I want to have a deeper felt/experiential map of my own mind and existance.
  • I want to suffer less.
  • I want to get in touch with lower levels of my experience, and more basic parts of my mind.
    • Both for epistemic clarity, and because I expect it will make me happier.
  • It sounds sorta like super powers and I've always wanted super powers.
  • I want to be kinder.
  • I want to be less terrified of dying.
  • I want to be less scared of being hurt by people.
  • I'm crazy excited by the idea of seeing the "clock ticks of experinece" (I interpreted an excerpt from MCTB to be saying the dude was able to percieve the actual sequential play by play of his experience)
  • Increased noticing skills

Assumptions / Predictions

  • There are real mental states / ways of being / skills that correspond to "enlightenment".
  • Though it might not be particularly quick or easy, I can can make progress towards achieving that through non-mysterious means.
  • If I do end up experiencing something like "The Dark Night of the Soul" I will be able to proceed through it (not getting stuck for more than a few months (made up time scale))

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