Inhabit body vs Be alert

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Inhabit body vs Be alert

Postby weichen » Wed Jan 17, 2007 10:19 pm

Eckhart wrote:It means to inhabit your body fully. to always have some of your attention in the inner energy field of your body. To feel the body from within, so to speak. Body awareness keeps you present. It anchors you in the Now.


"Inhabit body" is very similar to "be alert". Whenever I flip on the "high alert" switch, I am inhabiting my body. I feel my body from head to toe.

There seem to be some subtle differences between them.

1. Inhabit the body is only one effect of be alert.
When I flip on the "be alert" switch, it is like saying: ok, I am going to sense the whole universe with every cell of my body. There is a strong total body sensation. But additionally, I am quite aware of the universe outside my body.

2. When I am on "be alert" mode, the emphasis is on the external world. Although, there is very strong inner sensation (maybe inner organ movement, total body blood flow increase a lot due to mind shuting down). Ironically, the stronger my desire to sense the outside, the stronger the inner body sensation.

In that sense, don't try to sense the inner body. Just sense the external world. You end up sense the whole world (inside and out)

3. "Inhabit body" can be done while doing meditation in a quiet place at home (close eye). "Be alert" can be done at many more situations and can be combined with many activities. In my opinion, Eckhart does "be alert" while giving a talk. (he calls this "teach from presence").

If you want to put attention inside your body at a noisy place with eyes open, this creates inner conflict. As the visual and audio signal wants to take your attention to the outside. But if you do the "be alert" and use your total body to "feel" the whole world, everything is aligned perfectly. Totally effort free, fully present. One can do it as often and for as long as he desires without feeling tired (and greatly boost his health and realtionship with other people).

Just as a side note, even when I do meditation inside my quite home (eye closed), I often use the "be alert", use my body to sense the outside. Not paying attention to inside. This often leads to deeper peace, and more dramatical inner body sensation.

4. if you see the universe as the extended body. Then "inhabit body" and "Be alert" may be fully synonymous.
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Postby yougarksooo » Thu Jan 18, 2007 2:04 am

Yes, "seeing" the world from the inside, is one way I describe it. I think Tolle may have used those words also. There is such peace in that. Its only in that state that I sense what is meant by "all things are interconnected." The mind can't seem to grasp that.
"When people ask me who they are or who God is, I smile inside and whisper to the light: there you go again . . . pretending."

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Q/A on "Inhabit body" vs "Be alert"

Postby weichen » Fri Jan 19, 2007 5:10 am

More discussion on "Inhabit body" vs "Be alert" in Q/A format

Q:When you say "don't try to sense the inner body. Just sense the external world", do you mean looking at the tree in front you with no thoughts ?

A: No.

It is more like the universe is a big swiming pool, you are submerged in it and feel it with every cell of your whole body. You can feel the part that is in front of you (including the tree), not just with your eyes, but with your body. You can also feel the part that is behind you, which you can not see.





Q: You say that "Inhabit body" is very similar to "be alert". and that their difference are subtle. Is your thread an example of efforting, mind activities trying to split hair ?

A: Efforting implies struggling, and struggling implies the presence of conflicts. I feel motivated to post (share) what were registered on my mind, there are no detectable amount of opposing force (own the insights, keep the insights to myself etc). In that sense, posting is no efforting.
Subtle difference does not always mean insignificant difference, it just means that it is not easy to distinguish. When a significant distinction registers on my mind, posting it does not take effort (i.e. there is no inner opposing force)

On the other hand, I appreciate this question, as it reminds me to put in a little effort (against laziness) to make this thread more clear so that the readers can read it with less effort.






Q: You say even when I do meditation inside my quite home (eye closed), I often use the "be alert", use my body to sense the outside. Not paying attention to inside. This often leads to deeper peace, and more dramatical inner body sensation. This seems to be different from traditional teaching of meditation. I don't see why focusing on the inner body would lead to shallower peace and weaker inner body sensation.

A: thanks for pointing that out. I can see why it is confusing now.

I am only talking my experience HERE (to me) and NOW. It may not be true THERE (to another person) and LATER. But I guess if you try to sense the outside with your body, practice that a few thousands of time, you might agree with me.

I can speculate why "sensing the outside" might lead to deeper peace. (I assume people can agree on that deeper peace would lead to more dramatical inner body activities, per high school biology class):

(1)since we are hardwired to sense the inside, it is much easy to sense the inner body activities than outside world. Common inner body activies are: inner organ movement such as diaphragm moving up and down during deep breathing, tempreture change inside the body, warm energy moving along the spine up into the brain, bursts of electrical sensation inside the body like a battery discharge in short circuit, etc. The ease of sensing these inside signals often makes you lower your alertness level, and thoughts therefore sneak in easily. When you try to sense the outside, the signal is so weak, this forces you to keep inner brain activity down to the minimum (and even then you can't really sense much).

(2)When you are sensing the outside, no matter how strong the inner body sensation are, these inner signals automatically get filtered out because you are paying attention to something else, so you don't fall into the trap of thinking about the inner body sensations.





Q: You say that "Be alert" can be done at many more situations and can be combined with many activities.. You also say that even when I do meditation inside my quite home (eye closed), I often use the "be alert", use my body to sense the outside. Not paying attention to inside. If you can "Be alert" while doing other things, why bother to "Be alert" in your meditation at quiet home ?

A: I see what you mean. It is possible that lotus posture siting meditation inside quiet home might not offer too much more additional benefit (except for the bending of my knee and ankles). yes, I agree with you.




Q: You say that put attention inside your body at a noisy place with eyes open, this creates inner conflict. As the visual and audio signal wants to take your attention to the outside. Are you saying "sense outside rather than inside" maybe the key to live every moment of one's daily life in the meditation state (a milestone for every spiritual seeker) ?

A: Yes. That is a good summary.

"being alert" every moment is important:
(1) there will be some tough moments every day, "be alert" dissolves the unease, so there is far less accumulatoin of new dis-ease. So it is very beneficial from all aspects (health, relationship, intuition etc)
(2) "Be alert" every moment may allow one reach deeper peace than normal meditation, because you are not blocking out an hour of your precious time, so it is like doing it on stolen time. And you steal 14 hours every day. So the expectation is low (because there is no time cost), and thus much less mental noise.
(3) "Be alert" becomes more and more strengthened very quickly. Only after a few days of nonstop practice. I start catching myself "be alert" during shallow sleep at night. So the effect may actually extends to 24 hrs every day.
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Re:discussion on "Inhabit body" vs "Be alert&

Postby jj » Sat Jan 20, 2007 6:34 am

Thank you weichen.

Who is quoted in the text you posted "More discussion on "Inhabit body" vs "Be alert" in Q/A format"??
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inner dialogue

Postby weichen » Sat Jan 20, 2007 6:29 pm

Hi, JJ

My first post was quoted. So I was quoted. That first post came from my direct experience (not from reading books). So no other people are quoted.




The more discussion on "inhabit body vs be alert" in Q/A format post was actually a dialogue between citizens in a small town.

Each citizen is a painbody. That small town is my mind.

The painbody that raised the question in the dialogue might resonate with the painbodies residing in the mind of other forum members. Is that not true ?
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Postby Mike » Sun Jan 21, 2007 1:03 am

Nice one :lol:
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Re: Inhabit body vs Be alert

Postby careertry » Sun Apr 08, 2012 7:00 pm

Hi,

First of all a very nice and lengthy post. I really appreciate what you feel and little :( jealous that you keep on experiencing these peaceful stages. I have one question though.

Do you just remain aware of the outside world like practicing presence while watching stars, do you feel inner body sensations and also with that not label or judge or give thought to anything? Do you watch everything without giving any thought to it?

Because i too practice that kind of thing and Jon kabat Zinn also emphasizes on the same i.e we live most of the times in our heads and we never knew that their is a body down below the head. So i practice feeling body and walking and do all sort of different things with being alert in body. But that doesnt bring me that much happiness or peace.

Thank you in advance
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