If you’re going through Heck, don’t stop

Dr. Charles T. Tart, Mindfulness, Institute of Transpersonal Psychology,

Lecture 3, Part 10 of 13 parts. To start class from beginning, click here.

CTT: What else is happening with people? Happening in the now.

Student: I feel heavy. That feeling of heaviness.

CTT: Good heaviness? Bad heaviness? Neutral heaviness?

Student: Neutral.

CTT: And it too may change. What’s that Sufi story about a king? He had a wise Sufi visitor and asked him for advice that would apply in all situations in life. So the Sufi ended up giving him a ring on which was inscribed “And this too shall pass”. 😉

And it comes back to the sensing, looking, and listening (SLL) process of applying your attention in certain ways. Try not to freeze it into any particular result, even though sometimes particular results will appeal to us more. That would have been especially tempting if it was a nice heaviness. But otherwise, a neutral heaviness is not too much of a problem.

I can still remember the first time I applied this process while reading Ouspensky’s In Search of the Miraculous book. At some point, I forget which chapter, I read something of his and I did the process of bringing attention both outward and inward. Now it wasn’t quite the formal sense of sensing, looking and listening, but it was some process like it and I woke up. “Woke up” as compared with my ordinary state of consciousness at the time, It was like, “Wow, this is the real stuff. I exist!” And then I promptly fell back to (waking) sleep a second or two later — and told people about it for the next six months, but never bothered to do the process again.


Because I’m good at talking!


So remember this is a process. Don’t freeze it. And be careful of talking yourself into a certain outcome instead of staying with the process, per se.

One comment

  1. “I woke up. “Woke up” as compared with my ordinary state of consciousness at the time, It was like, “Wow, this is the real stuff. I exist!””

    Do you think this was a glimpse of a higher reality and not an illusion?

    Once I was doing yoga, if you can call sitting on the floor reaching for my toes to stretch out my hamstrings yoga, and something happened where I felt like I had access to all the information in the universe. Since then I’ve heard other people describe this feeling as happening during NDE’s, but oddly enough they never actually reveal anything very impressive. I had that same feeling of “cosmic consciousness” but I didn’t actually know anything new, it was really only a feeling.

    I’ve also experienced, during a long session of meditation, the non-duality of subject and object where I couldn’t sense my body and I seemed to identify my self as the object I was gazing at. This is supposed to prove that “we are all one”. To me it just seemed like part of my brain shut down, (I later learned this was a correct assumption: http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/bb/neuro/neuro01/web3/Farrenkopf.html) like it was just an illusion. It proved that the sense of self is subjective but I didn’t think I was perceiving things as they really are – it was just a different subjective interpretation.

    Both of these phenomena are supposed to be evidence of a higher reality, for example that the universe is a hologram, and maybe I’m too skeptical, too indoctrinated by my scientific education to accept that interpretation, but to me it just seems like once in a while the brain does weird and useless things.

    What was it about your experience that made you think it was something other than an illusion?


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