Questions about Dullness and Pleasure (Sorry another question)

Front Page Forums Meditation Questions about Dullness and Pleasure (Sorry another question)

This topic contains 4 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Alexander B 6 months, 4 weeks ago.

Viewing 5 posts - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #2585

    Alexander B
    Member

    Hello,

    I am currently on stage 4 and I think that I have experienced dullness in my practice before as a pleasant sensation of almost nothing occurring in my mind. I find it to be quite relaxing and I always feel well rested, but I wanted to know more about this sensation. Does the conscious part of the Mind train the unconscious discriminating mind to “turn off” so that it is no longer producing intentions into consciousness? Or are the discriminating and sensory minds still active but just not detecting any changes in information so I don’t experience anything. Also by the books definition of dullness, is it not technically impossible for anyone to actually consciously experience dullness because it is an unconscious moment, or is it actually a perception in its own right that I become aware of, because how can there be a pleasant sensation associated with something unconscious. I guess I would like to know really where the boundary of conscious experience is so that I can then determine in from my practice what is true and what is fabrication of the Mind, and I am seeking clarity. If anyone has some insight into this O would truly appreciate it.

    Thanks,
    Alex

    #2586

    Darlene T
    Member

    Hi Alex,

    Interesting questions. I would re state the “turn off” the discriminating mind…to “involve” the discriminating mind toward unifying with the intention… It is through this unification the training bears its fruit so to speak. Re the second question, I believe it is a perception in its own right (of mind moments), however, if not recognized as such and intervention does not take place, we are not as conscious in the following mind moments as the mind begins to slide further into dullness…. and we then have lost the ability to perceive.
    As far as the boundary goes…have fun exploring!

    Darlene Tataryn
    Teacher in Training

    #2588

    Michael Dunn
    Member

    Hello, Alexander

    There has been a similar thread about dullness that you may also be reading, but a key reading for you would be on page 157 Non-Perceiving Mind Moments which talks about the pleasant sensation and the parts of the conscious mind, which I think will answer your questions clearly. In short yes, they are all real mental events.

    Also, to be clear, I don’t believe the book says that dullness is a state of unconsciousness unless it was an example of the extreme of sleep. The stages of progressive or subtle dullness that we work with in meditation all do occur in consciousness, see page 164.

    Thanks,
    Michael
    Teacher-in-training

    #2592

    Julian S
    Member

    Hi Alex, it is inspiring to see you pursue this issue and seek to get clarity on it. You’ve asked about some very important points. Just to add to the excellent answers from Darlene and Michael.

    Also by the books definition of dullness, is it not technically impossible for anyone to actually consciously experience dullness because it is an unconscious moment, or is it actually a perception in its own right that I become aware of, because how can there be a pleasant sensation associated with something unconscious.

    The term “non perceiving mind moment” is preferred over “unconscious mind moment” because it is closer to the truth and helps avoid some pitfalls.

    You are 100% correct that it’s not possible to experience the non-perceiving moments themselves. But dullness isn’t the same thing as these mind moments! Dullness is the effect that non-perceiving mind moments, those sneaky blank spots in our perception that slip beneath the radar, have on our conscious experience. And speaking from my own experience, it’s 100% technically possible to consciously experience dullness 😉

    How does this happen? The book explains it better, but here’s my take on the longer story. Anyone else more qualified in the cog sci stuff please weigh in if I go astray…

    So mind moments happen extremely fast — much too fast for an everyday consciousness to detect the individual moments. Our experience consists of dozens and dozens of these moments stitched together every second by our mind-system. This “stitching together” is what creates a seemingly seamless flow of consciousness.

    Say for the example that today, this hour, this second your bodymind is capable of generating 100 mind moments per second (100 is a round number). Now say 10% of them are non-perceiving. That leaves you with 90 moments of consciousness during which some sensation or other was present in attention or awareness. What happens if 25% are non-perceiving? 50%? You’re left with fewer and fewer perceiving moments with which to experience this one second of time that we’re talking about.

    Realistically there may always be a few non-perceiving moments in each second of experience. But there may be more or less of them. Once there are enough of them, they push out the perceiving moments and that is what we call “dullness”.

    Dullness is what it feels like to have many non-perceiving moments scattered within the stream of moments that make up experience. It is not the non-perceiving moments themselves (which as you rightly point out, by definition cannot be perceived).

    I hope this helps, good luck with your practice and keep asking questions!

    Julian
    DT Teacher-in-Training

    • This reply was modified 7 months ago by  Julian S.
    • This reply was modified 7 months ago by  Julian S.
    #2611

    Alexander B
    Member

    Thanks for the replies!

Viewing 5 posts - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.