Daily Entry: October 25th, 2020

Meditation (Day 143)

Prep (1030)

Going in feeling really good. Something about the extra stretching I'm doing this weekend? I've decided to do whole stretch routine save for the second foam-roller exercise that's purposefully done very shortly before laying down in bed. This takes roughly 40 minutes instead of the typical 20, though I get those 20 minutes back at the end of the day. The reason I decided to do this is because on weekends I often spend some extra time watching entertainment with wife, and have less time during the night.

Motivations:

  • Practice intentionality
  • Unity of mind
  • Subduing distractions
  • See how far meditation takes me
  • Overcoming illusion of self

Intentions for the day:

  • Eyes closed
  • Prep posture and then set intention to sit completely still
  • Before focusing on the meditation object, cultivate joy
  • Immediately notice and correct for subtle dullness (stage 5 intention)
  • Special call-out to identify hypnagogic thoughts as a symptom of subtle dullness
  • Body-scan to increase mindfulness (stage 5 exercise)
  • Establish a clear scope of attention and completely ignore all subtle distractions (stage 6 intention)
  • Move, grow, and shrink the scope of attention to improve control over attention (stage 6 exercise)
  • Special call-out to completely ignore posture distractions
  • "Don't move the third eye"

Distractions to look out for:

  • Body-scan
  • Wife
  • Cat
  • Outside
  • Posture
  • Lower back
  • Shoulder
  • Lotus
  • Pain
  • Vision
  • Timer
  • SSBM
  • Reflection
  • Planning
  • Meta
  • Labeling
  • American Horror Story
  • Politics
  • Hypnagogy

Post-Meditation (1155)

Not sure if cold air makes feeling the breath at the nose easier of if vividness of breath is getting really strong. Probably a bit of both. It did take extra effort to put the breath at nose into awareness when moving my scope of attention to other parts of the body.

The labeling habit is starting to fade. The new "third eye" (though I often call it the "mind's eye" so I may refer to it as that instead) vigilance seems to help with that. It also helped with keeping the thinking/emotional mind considerably quiet, and rang the alarm when there were some hypnagogic thoughts whispering. Felt an energy surge very shortly after the whisper. Seems I may be able to trust peripheral awareness to keep that energy up once the habit is set.

Very well could be a new best day. So many days now though, it's harder and harder to be sure. They've all been so good, as well.

Dream

Intention (2250 the night before)

The time has come! Not perfect sleep hygiene, but in a better place. My intent prep as I lay down has gotten nice and simple. Currently, it is:

  • I will reality check in my dreams
  • I will WBTS in the middle of the night
  • I will watch myself fall asleep
  • WILD
  • Visit my aunt's house
  • Cultivate joy

Then I relax, watching myself fall asleep.

So, let's get to it.

Wake (logged at 0740 this morning)

The "write a little bit in journal" habit has waned a bit. The cold, maybe? Perhaps now because I don't want to turn on the light (don't want to wake the wife, who's sleeping on the bed again now that's it's not super hot upstairs).

Not sure if I remembered dreams at the various points I woke up throughout the night. Feel like my mind has been in "processing" mode the past couple nights of dreams.

I think I should set the "write at least one sentence" intent, first-and-foremost when falling asleep. The compromise at the time helped build the habit, and the habit itself helps with dream recollection.

Pre-nap (1500)

Late nap. Almost forgot it entirely. Need to consider new WBTS strats now that it's colder and also I may need to get out of bed to write in journal.

I'll let nap ruminate on that a bit.

Post-nap (1518)

I'll grab and pick up my notebook at least, is what I've come up with as my "bare minimum" intent. That should tell me if I have anything to write, and I should know what to do next if I need to write elsewhere.

Body feels real good after that nap. Had a loving-kindness engulf me without any attempt on my end during the nap as well.

Misc Writing

Weekly Review

Today is weekly review day! First weekly review with new writing system, which actually makes me more inclined to write things.

I have done eye drops and eye mask for the week, which means my vision is a bit blurry right now. That's good, though, means that the eye residue that built up has dissolved a bit and my eyes will be more moisturized.

A task that got me to come here and start writing is the "Experiment for this week?" item. I may just want to continue Notion system updates. Which is to say start moving all the things into defined projects (where appropriate), and having a real "Next Actions" database instead of constantly abusing my tickler.

So, instead of a list of things to tackle that I may or may not throw to the future, I'll have a garden of projects with budding tasks. There'll also be a "No Task" project or a junk drawer for just one-off things, I suppose. The less friction there is with a project, the easier it'll be, I think.

So, then, during this weekly review, I'll take the project list part pretty seriously.

I suppose the Notion mutation experiment is itself a project.... Probably should create that as well.

Alright, so.... The people I know who read this public diary, I have set up regular intervals to chat with them. I think I'm going to stop doing it now. It'll all be in Notion now. Perhaps some blog posts will come this way, though I think I'm going to cultivate a lot of rough writing before I want to publish anything. We'll see.

Later!

Daily Entry: October 24th, 2020

Purposefully slept in this morning. Was pretty exhausted yesterday and didn't practice good sleep hygiene by getting into bed sooner.

Dream

Intention (2325 the night before)

Watch myself fall asleep. WBTS. No wake-up time designated tonight. Thank you me, for remembering my dreams.

Wake-Back-to-Sleep (logged at 0435 this morning)

There's a dream I woke up from, but I can't remember it. A spooky optical illusion freaked me out a bit on wake up. And I couldn't breath thru my nose as much as I would've liked. Pretty sure it was just a dream fragment that I can't remember now. Not a huge loss, though sometimes fragments unlock the whole dream (or much more).

WILD time?

Wake (logged at 0850 this morning)

There were dreams but I don't remember. That's okay, it happens. Looks like I still got to work on sleep hygiene a bit. Gots to work on consistency, and also making sure I sleep well the day following a poor night of sleep. Which is ironically hard because sleep deprivation hurts impulse control, which hurts my end-of-day wind-down habits.

Pre-nap (1400)

Still haven't meditated yet today. Pretty rare now to not meditate before nap. Will meditate shortly after nap, I think. Lots of variables at play, though.

I'm falling into doing habits again, not because I've decided them, but because they're habits. In the moment, I pick them intentionally, I start the Toggl and everything, usually beforehand.

But... my reasoning for choosing to do them is more "I do this at this time" and less any higher level purpose. Mind you, I'm not saying I'm trying to avoid "wasting time". I simply want whatever I'm doing to be accomplishing its purpose the best way. In the past, this ended up being "Less YouTube, more Anime". Replace like with like, more-or-less.

Though changing ratios may also end up being a goal. That's different, though, and not in scope here. That'd be a separate project.

Post-nap (1428)

Lots of thoughts of Smash. Not just Melee, but also Ultimate.

Also, interestingly, naturally ended up thinking about living at my aunt's. Which is kinda what I'm trying to incubate.

Lower back is aggravated again. Noticing old posture habits regressing lately. Probably related. May have also been the poor sleep the other night. Might even be the not doing ab exercises yesterday (which ironically I decided against because of my body). Going to work on posture for a bit, regardless.

Higher-level choosing of the things I do is something I'll start working on, I think. I suppose, in the moment, I could work on asking the deeper "why" of anything I choose to do.

Meditation (Day 142)

Prep

Motivations:

  • Practice intentionality
  • Unity of mind
  • Overcoming illusion of self
  • See how far the stages take me
  • Subduing distraction

Intentions for the day:

  • Eyes closed
  • Prep posture and set intention to stay still
  • Before focusing on meditation object, cultivate joy
  • Immediately notice and correct for subtle dullness (stage 5 intention
  • Body-scan to increase mindfulness (stage 5 exercise)
  • Establish a clear scope of attention and completely ignore all subtle distractions (stage 6 intention)
  • Move, grow, and shrink the scope of attention to improve control over attention (stage 6 exercise)
  • Especially work to completely ignore posture distractions

Distractions to look out for:

Post-Meditation

Today feels pretty close to another best day. Not sure how much a feeling of more subtle distractions is me still getting better at noticing them. Especially the hypnagogic ones. Further, noticing them seems to gain me more energy, which may mean they are a symptom of subtle dullness after all.

An interesting thing that occurred at one point was the internalizing of something I thought of a while back, which was that subtle distractions were like things in my peripheral vision causing my eyes or head to move to that thing. Ignoring it would be not moving my eyes, and completely ignoring it is to be aware that there's something to notice but not processing it.

At some point it clicked and now I could keep my third eye on the breath and not have it momentarily look at the distraction. This was inconsistent, but will prove useful. Perhaps I'll make one of my goals to be "don't move the third eye"?

Misc Writing

Daily Entry: October 22nd, 2020

Meditation (Day 140)

Prep (0845)

Today, I will do the prep both off and on the cushion. Yesterday went very well with prep on cushion, but I think having something to reference to verify I remember all the things I want to prep with is also good. So pre-prep prep, as it were.

Motivations:

  • Practice intentionality
  • Subdue distractions
  • Unity of mind
  • See how far the stages take me
  • Overcome the illusion of self

Intentions for the day:

  • Eyes closed
  • Settle posture in prep and set the intention to sit still
  • Before starting to focus on meditation object, cultivate joy
  • Immediately notice and correct for subtle dullness (stage 5 intention)
  • Body-scan to increase mindfulness (stage 5 exercise)
  • Develop a clearly established scope of attention (stage 6 intention)
  • Completely ignore all subtle distractions (stage 6 intention)
  • Move, grow, and shrink the scope of attention throughout the body (stage 6 exercise)
  • Especially ignore posture distractions

Distractions to look out for:

  • Body-scan
  • Posture
  • Lower back
  • Shoulder
  • Swallowing
  • Planning
  • Meta
  • Politics
  • American Horror Story
  • Reflection
  • Timer
  • Labeling
  • Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Wife
  • Cat
  • Outside

Post-Meditation (1000)

Introspective awareness is almost like a muscle I can keep tense. It staying tense for the whole session (and really at all times) is basically the goal. There's no real extra energy required to do this, it's just not wired to stay that way yet.

Though, because it's like that more often, there are other capabilities I can exercise. I believe one of them is the peripheral introspective awareness. Which is my mind grouping the subtle distractions together. Now, watching this too closely is a mistake, I think. As then it becomes a lot like labeling. Though perhaps that's a sort of paranoia.

In any case, my endurance for ignoring subtle distractions as they show up does still wane by the end. It's interesting the parallel to gross distractions coming in at the end. But the breath is still quite vivid, as far as I can tell. I'm just not quite as capable of reminding myself to focus exclusively on the meditation object. Perhaps growing and shrinking and moving the scope of attention when I notice this is a good idea. I resisted the temptation today as I considered it itself to maybe be a distraction. Eventually, I did do it, and it seemed to help, but maybe doing sooner is better.

Dream

Intention (2243 the night before)

I will WBTS. I will write down my dreams. I will wake up at 0630. Thank you, me.

Wake-Back-to-Sleep (logged at 0357 this morning)

Feels like I was having an abstract dream. Potentially related to exercise. I believe my current hypothesis is such dreams are "processing" dreams. My mind is wiring things together and making me better at the thing.

Let's remember a narrative dream next.

Falling into Politics

I am on top of some building. I am dissing Trump with some other people. I fall off the edge of the building. Still alive, I am too injured to get up on the ground below. I can hear news narration about what happened to me.

Donald Trump is the first to find me. He tries to hide me behind MAGA merchandise that he's trying to sell. I have enough strength to put it out of the way.

Some women come and save me. One asks me if I can stand and I tell her I need help to get up. They both support me, me in the middle with my arms over each of them. I gingerly take each step as we move.

They take me to their political headquarters. They say I should run and use my run-in with Trump as political fodder. I'd rather campaign for someone. I end up talking to someone who is running.

That's all I remember.

Wake (logged at 0640 this morning)

Woke up at 0630, remembered dream, and did a WBTS at 0357! Success! There was this strange bit where I thought I remember two dreams, but looked and the first dream was already written down, but on going to write the dream above, there was no other dream written down, and I can't remember more than one dream.

Did I dream looking in the journal? I did a reality check before writing in it, but not one before that memory of me looking in it.

Pre-nap (1343)

Feel like lucid dream coming soon. Reality check habit triggering more and more. Dreams remembered nightly again, I think. WBTS back. Would be nice to have a really solid "watch myself fall asleep" experience again as well. But lucid dream doesn't have to be WILD, can be DILD.

Feeling real good. There's a synergy between past, present, and future me. There's still some habits to iron out, but I feel them coming along.

Post-nap (1405)

Interesting sensations:

  • Feeling of gravity pulling in different directions (as if I'm standing on my hands for example)
  • Not knowing where my hands are or how they are resting (they were lightly clenched in my pockets)

Tried to really see an "apple" and I don't think I did, but it was the only thing in color in the visualization.

Felt the warmth spread over my body as the nap ended, but it had trouble seeping into my feet. Could really feel my feet and toes. Control over scope of attention really improving (thanks to meditation).

Experimental (Notion Organization)

Okay, so I am going to try out saving my writing in a Notion database called "Misc Writing". I thought this would be annoying, but the idea is that the "title" of each page is a paragraph. I can then tag each paragraph with the kind of content I think it is (if it's interesting enough to tag) and then later on I can read, in chronological order, all my writing of a certain tag.

My thinking is that my blog post ideas will have their names as tags. And then I can initialize a blog post with a linked database of misc writing that filters only on that tag. Once I feel I've written enough to edit it into something more, it can become a blog post.

I can also more easily explore my old writing via tags, maybe? We'll see what happens.

This should also mean that I can just start writing a new paragraph at any given point without having to make any space for it, and just make sure I tag it.

This may be an okay way of doing the zettelkasten method (as far as my limited understanding of it goes).

It'll also be pretty easy to find the context of a sentence from its created timestamp. Hmmm... this could be quite interesting.

And I have verified that this setup copy-pastes into my diary pretty well, so neat! Note: I have tagged each paragraph here with "Experiment", "Zettelkasten", and "Notion Mutation".

I wonder how Notion handles exporting this setup.... (I'll tag this thought with "Idea" to come back to later.)

Ooh... yes. I like this. (This will not be tagged. Also, I'm going to stop noting how I'm tagging things.)

Though, now it may be time to really confront the purpose of these daily diary posts.... I really don't need to have them anymore. The few people who read this... well, the ones that matter (no offense if I don't know you) I would probably get more out of some sort of regular call with them, if I don't do that already (and I don't for at least one of you).

So weird to maybe just stop.... Well, I'm going to do this until this weekend, at least, to capture anything I do in my diary that I may want to replicate here. For instance, I tag each post still. I can do the same thing in Notion.

Lastly, I'm going to want to really verify I can export and have all my stuff from Notion. Not sure how exporting Notion databases works.

Anyways, I really need to stop writing now and stretch and go to bed.

Daily Entry: October 21st, 2020

Meditation (Day 139)

Another prime number. Spoiled.

Prep (0815)

I did prep whilst sitting on the cushion today.

Post-Meditation (0900)

New best day! On a prime day, that's fun!

The breath was powerfully vivid after a bit of a slow ramp-up. Introspective awareness was quite vigilant. There were moments of distractions only in peripheral awareness, but it was hard to keep them there on verification. It was also hard to know if they were really there if I did check but no specific distraction came.

There was an extra ringing in my ears and a extra blue tint of light in my vision (eyes closed).

There was no hypnagogic or nonsense thoughts.

Perhaps the timing helped today? Needed to meditate early so I got in between 0815 and 0900.

Perhaps also it was doing all of prep on the cushion again? Didn't have time so I included it in the 45 minutes.

Perhaps, too, it's just the fruit of practice.

Lots of variables at play. Super exciting.

Dream

Intention (2155 the night before)

2155! I'm curious if sleep will go smoothly. I'd like to wake up early, as otherwise meditation will prove difficult until the evening.

Anyways, post-nap brought up something interesting: visualizing doesn't help incubate naps. Or, at least, it alone is not sufficient and not visualizing doesn't strictly prevent incubation.

I realized this having considered my "accidental incubation" dreams. The ones about Daysha and the aunt I haven't talked to in a while. Both occurred when I thought about them during the day and reflected a bit.

This reflection may be the dream seed.

So, then, what's important about my (other) aunt's house that I want to incubate a dream there? I haven't visited in a while, and usually I visit twice a year. I see my nieces and nephews. I'm home. And I'd like to go home for a bit.

Not going to recite reality check triggers anymore. That's something to do before the day starts to help build habit. I will still set the intention to do a reality check while dreaming, to WBTS, to visit my aunt, and to watch myself fall asleep.

Hotel Reunion

I am at a hotel. My family is there. I pick a fight with my mom over something, I forget what. I believe I have a similar fight with my sister.

I explore my hotel room. Its layout is ever-changing. At oin point, deep in the closet, I find a hat I used to own but lost a long time ago. I try it on, and it fits my head snugly but comfortably.

Looking in the mirror, I see that my ponytail is too high up and looks funky with the hat on. "I'll need to fix that," I think to myself.

I go and apologize to my mom. There's a conversation. She's exploring something. I don't remember. I tell her how I often leave things where I stay, even hotels, but somehow manage to find them on revisit, even hotels. We laugh about finding the hat.

I go to see my sister. I hear her cleaning as I enter where she's staying. I realize I'm tracking footprints in and panic a bit about angering her.

That's all I remember.

Wake (logged at 0650 this morning)

Once again, woke up for WBTS, but didn't do it. Also woke up at times where I could've written something in journal, but didn't. But the urge to do so is stronger each time. That's progress as far as I'm concerned. And I retained a lot of my dream in spite of that, too! Thank you, me!

Pre-nap (1230)

Pre-naps are pretty cool. Glad I'm doing them. Lets me get some reflection in and then a nap to further process it.

Two things jump out at me today, dream-wise:

  • I wanted to "go home" and had a dream about visiting with family at a hotel
  • I set the intent to wake up at 0630 and did!

The second thing I really appreciate, but the first thing is interesting. Perhaps I'll start the nap with that in mind.

Post-nap (1248)

Have a lot. Probably want type. Anchors:

  • Feelings of (platonic) love
  • Call parents regularly?
  • Insight vs wisdom
  • Free-will vs agency
  • Notion organization idea for atomic, linkable notes

Experimental (Notion Organization)

Have an idea, but will maybe make time for it tomorrow.

General Thinking

My days are super full as of late. Not in a tiring way. Just in a way that I really have to know what I'm cutting to add things.

Daily Entry: October 20th, 2020

Meditation (Day 138)

Prep (1140)

Got five minutes to prep so I'm just going to read through the stuff instead of trying to recite from memory.

Motivations:

  • Practice Intentionality (set specific intentions)
  • Unity of mind
  • Subduing distractions
  • Overcoming the illusion of self
  • See what next stages of meditation bring

Intentions for the day:

  • Prep posture as long as necessary, then set intention to sit completely still
  • Body-scan during the "focus on the breath throughout the body" beginning part of meditation (stage 5)
  • Body-scan when few distractions and when focus not as vivid as could be (stage 5)
  • Focus exclusively on the meditation object (stage 6)
    • usually the breath at the nose
    • also the body parts being scanned
  • Keep awareness strong so that it can stop distractions and dullness from interfering
  • Specifically be aware of posture and do not give it attention
  • Do not feed distractions with attention (even with labeling now), instead just list the ones you remember during post-meditation reflection
  • Increase scope of breath attention to more body parts to help subdue subtle distraction
  • Eyes closed today
  • Before starting to focus on meditation object, cultivate joy
  • Wordlessly return to the set intentions

Distractions to look out for:

  • Wife
  • Labeling
  • Outside
  • Cat
  • Posture
  • Body-scan
  • Timer
  • Reflection
  • Politics
  • Haunting of Bly Manor
  • Meta
  • Hypnagogy
  • Vision
  • Work
  • Planning

Post-Meditation (1350)

Busy day, fitting things in. No reflection right after sit. Nothing new to report on, either. I think that's fine. Not every day requires some thought. The practice still has value without it.

Dream

Intention (2332 the night before)

So, still falling asleep a bit late, but opslead over. Sleep hygiene should help with regaining dream retrieval, so that's main priority.

I fell like writing a larger intent should also help.

Let's go over the whole routine I do as I lay down:

Focus exclusively on the dream intents.

Reality check when (typically I check for dreaming here):

  • cat
  • food
  • water
  • journal
  • toggl
  • watch
  • conflict
  • call out

WBTS at some point in the night. Prep for WILD.

Capture thoughts in notes when wake-up at any point. Try at least one sentence before going back to sleep.

Then visualize.

Time for bed.

ChiRunning

I am running. Focusing on form. I am running in my underwear. My wife tells me I shouldn't do that, so I run naked. That's all I remember.

Wake (logged at 0735 this morning)

Almost WBTS, but decided to sleep. If I had done WBTS, would've remembered dream more. but I think I fell asleep back into that dream. Woke again at 0620, so that was probably the time to save the dream, but wrote it down at final wake up time of 0730 (after laying in bed for 10 minutes).

I still consider most of this solid. Recovery takes time and super strong habits will also take time.

Pre-nap (1351)

Fitting nap in tight place. Reset time! Nothing new, just keep drilling habits.

Post-nap (1415)

10-minute nap. Interesting insight: visualizing doesn't incubate. Might think on that in intent tonight.

Experimental (Notion Organization)

Not today. Maybe tomorrow. Today was full. Tomorrow shouldn't be as full.

Daily Entry: October 18th, 2020

Dream

Intention (2333 the night before)

Focus on sleep quality. Drill habits if sleep good. Remembering dreams nice, but I am not going to be upset if I don't.

Wake (logged at 0827 this morning)

I did wake at 0400 and momentarily consider WBTS, but decided to just go straight back to sleep.

There were perhaps dreams I remember at some points but right now they're completely gone (not even a memory of having remembered).

Pre-nap (1308)

Being pretty mindful today. Which is cool. Will try to reset habits today. Got some errands to run today, so let's get napping.

Post-nap (1330)

Quite a bit of hypnagogy. Decided that strawberry donut incubation not working. Will try aunt house visit for a bit. Spent a solid amount of nap exploring her house while watching my body fall further into the nap. Might be possible to WILD while doing this, not sure.

Meditation (Day 136)

Prep

Motivations:

  • Unity of mind
  • Subduing distractions
  • See what the next stages of meditation are like
  • Practing intentionality
  • Overcoming the illusion of self

Intentions for the day:

  • Eyes closed today
  • Prep posture until ready to set intention to sit still
  • Body-scan on breath throughout body (stage 5 exercise)
  • Body-scan when breath loses vividness (stage 5 exercise)
  • Set the intention to catch and immediately correct for subtle dullness (stage 5)
  • Set the intention to focus exclusively on the breath (stage 6)
  • Keep all distracting thoughts in peripheral awareness
  • Especially posture
  • Do not feed distactions with attention
  • Increase the scope of the breath to more body parts to help subdue distraction as necessary (stage 6 exercise)
    • Decrease slowly when distractions are subdued

Distractions to look out for:

  • Wife
  • Meta
  • Haunting on Bly Manor
  • Politicis
  • Reflection
  • Timer
  • Fantasy
  • Body-scan
  • Posture
  • Outside
  • Vision
  • Labeling
  • Swallowing
  • Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Spiderverse
  • Lower back

Post-Meditation (1730)

There was some strange, hypnagogic-like thoughts. Very similar to old nap experiences. Every time they showed up, I checked for dullness, but everything seemed pretty vivid and strong.... It is possible, similar to how I hear things, that I just have nonsense thoughts that usually I don't notice.

In any case, increasing mindfulness exercises (stage 5) probably still quite worthwhile. Though, stage 6 has a variation, so I'm sure I'm increasing mindfulness in both. I am also paranoid about dullness, which may be causing dullness symptoms without dullness? One thing I'm doing is regularly checking for dullness. Similar to the introspective check-in (which itself is done in a peripheral way n;ow, kinda, I'm working on it).

Still voicing my intentions as I return to exclusive breath or remind myself to be still. Today, I tried to make those wordless. Sometimes I think I could instill the intent without the words. I'll continue to play with that.

Experimental (Notion Organization)

Should I still try to experiment with special meditations?

Perhaps it's time for a new experiment?

Maybe just organizing my Notion setup for about 15 minutes or so a day?

General Thinking

A lot of the weekend got eaten up by errands and opslead stuff. Will have to decimate the weekly review throughout the week again.

Daily Entry: October 17th, 2020

Meditation (Day 135)

Prep (1441)

Everything delayed a bit due to an opslead page waking me up thrice in the morning. Practicing flexibility and prioritizing on purpose, though distractions are fast and loose thus far.

Motivations:

  • Practicing intentionality
  • Subduing distractions
  • Overcoming the illusion of self
  • See what the next stages of meditation bring
  • Unity of mind

Intentions for the day:

  • Prep posture until ready to set intention to stay still
  • Body-scan when narrowing to breath throughout the body (stage 5)
  • Body-scan when breath loses vividity (stage 5)
    • Immeditately notice and correct for subtle dullness
  • Set the intention to focus exclusively on the breath (stage 6)
    • Body-scan with this intention
    • Fill attention with so many places to feel the breath that distractions have no room to enter
  • Keep pephiral awareness strong so that it can stop distractions and dullness from interfering
  • Do not feed distractions with attention
  • Especially posture, pain, and various bodily distractions
  • Eyes closed today

Distractions to look out for:

  • Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Wife
  • Cat
  • Work (General)
  • Body-scan
  • Outside
  • Reflection
  • Planning
  • Fantasy
  • Politics
  • Vision
  • Posture
  • Pain
  • Lower-back
  • Haunting on Bly Manor
  • Labeling
  • Meta

Post-Meditation (1550)

Considering the poor sleep last night, meditation got me to a super good place. Still pretty sure stage 5 and stage 6 is accurate. Lots of subtle distractions. Solid "exclusive focus on breath" alarm as soon as a subtle distraction appears. And I'm pretty good at immediately letting the distraction go back into the periphery.

Dream

Intention (2317 the night before)

Hopefully no page tonight. Let's see what happens. Daysha showed up last night. Incubation is hard. Purposeful incubation, anyways.

Dream Fragment

Avatar: Last Airbender. On a disintegrating raft with Zuko.

Wake (logged at 0910 this morning)

Pages woke me up thrice last night. Remembered two dreams, and at least captured a fragment of one. Pretty good considering that I rushed to work and didn't write down what I could at the time.

Pre-nap (1350)

Probably really need this nap. Focus on the healing aspect of it today.

This will hopefully also be good prep for meditation.

Post-nap (14010)

Not the best I've felt after a nap, but much closer to peak energy than before nap. I'd call that a success.

Daily Entry: October 16th, 2020

Dream

Meditation is later today, so let's write down dreams now.

Intention (2317 the night before)

Let's keep drilling those habits!

Watch myself fall asleep. WBTS. WILD. Incubate strawberry donuts.

Good night.

With Daysha at the Airport

I am at the airport with Daysha (my first dog I had, whom passed away in 2015). Need to put her in the kennel and check her into the flight. I realized I forgot a blanket and am very worried about her being too cold. I look around the locker room I'm in for a blanket I can use. Can't find anything that's good enough.

Wake (logged at 0811 this morning)

Got page as I was laying down to sleep. As such, decided against WBTS for sleep quality purposes. This practicing of flexibility is also an important habit.

I also just captured the vagaries of the dream I remember. That may be all I remember. Or, as I digitize later, I may remember more and update it to a present-tense narrative.

The original dream notes for "With Daysha at the Airport":

Daysha airport. Locker room. No blanket. Worried it'll be too cold for her.

Pre-nap (1406)

Tight schedule today. Let's get a solid nap in while I can.

Post-nap (1420)

Feeling energized! Had an energy current surge through me at one point. Had to move it was so strong.

Some philosophy and work stuff drifted thru my mind, but the main thing I remember is thinking of pumpkin donuts. Also, fixing oven.

Experimental (Special Meditation)

Did a short meditation (took advantage of the work session). Woke up late (due to being paged right before going to sleep last night) and had a meeting right after the work session, so couldn't just extend it.

I plan on doing a "proper" one at 1600 now, but am very glad to have at least done the short one. Still gives me that "hit" of focus that should prove valuable for the rest of the day.

So today's "special" was a short session in morning to get the day started, but a proper, training session of the 45 minute variety at around 1600.

Meditation (Day 134)

Prep (1610)

Not going to write these from memory today as a bit short on time.

Motivations:

  • Practice Intentionality (set specific intentions)
  • Unity of mind
  • Subduing distractions
  • Overcoming the illusion of self

Intentions for the day:

  • Prep posture as long as necessary, then set intention to sit completely still
  • Before starting to focus on meditation object, cultivate joy
  • Eyes closed today
  • Body-scan during the "focus on the breath throughout the body" beginning part of meditation (stage 5)
  • Body-scan when few distractions and when focus not as vivid as could be (stage 5)
  • Focus exclusively on the meditation object (stage 6)
    • usually the breath at the nose
    • also the body parts being scanned
  • Keep awareness strong so that it can stop distractions and dullness from interfering
  • Specifically be aware of posture and do not give it attention
  • Do not feed distractions with attention (even with labeling now), instead just list the ones you remember during post-meditation reflection
  • Increase scope of breath attention to more body parts to help subdue subtle distraction

Distractions to look out for:

  • Wife
  • Cat
  • Outside
  • Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Pain
  • Shoulder
  • Lower back
  • Lotus
  • Posture
  • Reflection
  • Fantasy
  • Vision
  • Body-scan
  • Dreaming?
  • Labeling
  • Meta
  • Swallowing
  • Timer
  • Work
  • Slack

Post-Meditation (1700)

Lots of subtle distractions. Still a really good meditation. Pretty sure stage 5, stage 6 still correct.

Daily Entry: October 15th, 2020

Meditation (Day 133)

Prep (0930)

Motivations:

  • Unity of mind
  • See what the next stages are like
  • Practice intentionality
  • Overcoming the illusion of self
  • Subduing distractions (on and off the cushion)

Intentions for the day:

  • Prep pose to stable position and set intention to sit still
  • Body-scan while narrowing focus to the breath (stage 5)
  • Body-scan when breath loses vividness (stage 5)
  • Exclusive attention body-scan exercise (stage 6)
  • Resolve to settle attention exclusively to current meditation object
  • Keep perhiperal awareness strong to keep dullness at bay
  • Specifically keep posture in awareness and out of attention
  • Do not feed distractions with attention (even with labeling), simply list the distractions you naturally remember during reflection
  • Increase scope of attention to the breath sensations of more body parts to help subdue subtle distractions
  • Eyes closed today

Distractions to look out for:

  • Wife
  • Cat
  • Outside
  • Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Pain
  • Shoulder
  • Lower back
  • Lotus
  • Posture
  • Reflection
  • Fantasy
  • Vision
  • Body-scan
  • Dreaming?
  • Labeling
  • Meta
  • Swallowing
  • Timer
  • Work
  • Slack

Post-Meditation (1045)

I keep getting short bits of exclusive attention, I believe. Also some interesting feelings throughout the body around the times I get the exclusive attention. There's an excitement that happens that has me lose it. It's a lot like getting excited in a lucid dream and waking up.

There was a time near the end that distractions really wanted to be gross, but they stayed subtle, and I was able to better identify how certain distractions beget others.

Couldn't help but do some labeling, and funnily enough that often led to me labeling the "labeling". Double-up on the labeling distraction! Triple-up?

Feeling super great. Like, even better than usual. Though, this feeling better than usual is becoming somewhat usual.

Super exciting.

Dream

Intention (2330 the night before)

I should revisit some saved dreams soon. Maybe this weekend. See if anything jumps out at me. I wonder at what intervals I should revisit dreams. Like, is sooner better, or does length provide a valuable new perspective?

Watch myself fall asleep. Notice when the dream tries to tell me I'm dreaming. WBTS. WILD. Incubate strawberry donuts.

Good night.

Dream Fragment

Vaguely remember telling someone to avoid getting hit by cabinets as they stood up.

Wake-Back-to-Sleep (logged at 0425 this morning)

Feels like it's been a while since WBTS, but I only missed last night. My mind has wandered to the lucid dream that I played with dream powers in. I wouldn't mind doing that sort of thing again.

Almost just fell asleep again with pen and journal in hand.

WILD. Backup with DILD intention. Incubate strawberry donuts. Let's see what happens.

Wake (logged at 0720 this morning)

No dreams remembered. Not too late. Dreams may come. If not, that's okay. Did go to sleep a bit late last night. That seems to interfere, sometimes. In any case, solid habits, I think. Just keep going, and iterate on habits when appropriate.

Pre-nap (1302)

Reset and get back to work.

Post-nap (1318)

Good nap.

Experimental (Special Meditation)

Joined on the work meditation session at 1600 today. I'm pretty sure I want to do something special there, but today I just did another, shorter session today.

General Thinking

Tasks stacking up a bit, but maintaining focus has kept me from feeling overwhelmed. There's an artificial urgency that I need to let go of, I think.

Daily Entry: October 14th, 2020

Meditation (Day 132)

Prep (1730)

Late meditation today. Had to keep rescheduling it due to opslead. That I was prioritizing it, but then letting it slip did let me maintain a good headspace. I used some "exclusive attention" skill-building techniques during regular work. Decide what I'm doing on purpose, even if really a sudden distraction came along. Certain distractions are defined as more important than what I am doing.

Motivations:

  • Practice intentionality
  • Exclusive attention
  • See what the higher stages are like
  • Unity of mind
  • Overcoming the illusion of self

Intentions for the day:

  • Eyes closed today (reading on the "inner light" and how it happens to those who meditate with eyes closed makes me want to at least alternate if not switch entirely)
  • Prep posture until ready to set intention to sit still, then set that intention
  • Body-scan as part of movement to exclusive focus on breath
  • Body-scan as practicing exclusive focus on breath
  • Keep awareness strong so it can stop distractions and dullness from interfering
  • Specifically be aware of posture and do not give it attention
  • Do not feed distractions with attention (even with labeling now), instead just list the ones you remember during post-meditation reflection
  • Increase scope of breath attention to more body parts to help subdue subtle distractions

Distractions to look out for:

  • Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Wife
  • Cat
  • Outside
  • Pain
  • Shoulder
  • Lower back
  • Posture
  • Memories
  • Reflection
  • Work (general)
  • Slack
  • Swallowing
  • Timer

Let's sit down and meditate!

Post-Meditation (1930)

My confidence about being in stage 5/stage 6 territory grows. Closed eyes was also quite interesting. There was this strange bluish light. Not sure if induced after reading about the "inner light". Will play with it further for a bit, I think.

I am very paranoid about dullness, which I think is maybe fine as I settle into exclusionary attention. Got to make sure I'm not shutting out awareness but merely keeping things in peripheral awareness. I regularly checked the vividness of the breath, and also checked whether or not introspection was in awareness or peripheral awareness (not quite the right way to put it, but I'll find the right words as time comes).

Breath was almost always vivid except for the really confusing bit with the eyes seeing a bluish light and I felt like breath was losing vividness but it was all a bit different. May have been a stage 6 milestone, may have been hypnagogy (though it didn't seem like it). Did a stage 5 body-scan and things returned to normal... which either fixed dullness or pulled me out of exclusive attention.

Which is all to say I'm in interesting territory and it's fine to make mistakes and stuff. I'm learning, after all!

General Thinking

I'll digitize the dream journal stuff below tomorrow.

....

Changed my mind. Doing it now before bed.

Dream

Intention (2300 the night before)

I am starting to suspect that parts of the mind that provide the dream content to me are trying to help the mind responsible for lucidity.

Lots of me noticing things are strange. Even a dream that had me check my watch twice for non-dream reasons.

There isn't much to act on here, I don't think. I believe it's a sign of progress and to keep at it.

Watch myself fall asleep. WBTS. WILD. Incubate strawberry donuts. Wake up at 0710.

Invalid ID and No Passport ;_;

I am at an airport. I have landed for my layover, before I get on my flight to Japan. The TSA agent looks at my driver's license and sees a bunch wrong with it.

While he's going over the ID, I notice another one in my wallet. But it both looks like the old style and says it's from the future. I wonder when I got a joke ID.

"This is the wrong date, your name is misspelled, and somehow I'm the person who signed off on this ID... in 1991?" he rattles off.

"Then it's your fault," I say indignantly. He clips my ID, making it void.

Despair waves over me. Then I really I only need my passport anyways. Then I realize I forgot it. Another wave. I think I'm crying, "It's fine, I just won't go to Japan."

Dream Fragment

I'm racing some people to the exit. I think it's a train station. I'm very confused on how to escape the maze-like structure.

Wake (logged at 0740 this morning)

I vaguely remember a chance for WBTS, but just went back to sleep.

Again, the dream I remembered seems to have tried to tell me I was dreaming (the second ID in wallet).

Pre-nap (1428)

Late nap, but I can fit it in!

Just going to go straight to nap. Nothing special to consider today, I don't think.

Post-nap (1450)

Skipped on wake-up.