Hi Joe,desertwoodworker wrote: ↑Thu Jun 25, 2020 3:02 am
Jundo, I note thus far that you have not mentioned instances of students of yours mentioning a change in vision (or "the brain's" visual interpretation or reporting of scenes seen) upon undertaking intensive practice as on sesshin, with you. Does this mean that no one has approached you about this? That would be very interesting. I can't imagine that this phenomenon is rare. But, have a look at posture. Do many -- or few? -- sit half-lotus?
Particular posture may be key in this / to this... .
I hear from folks encountering various visual phenomena all the time, but they vary in content as well as subjective interpretation. Some have aspects of what you described. I have had folks see lights, auras, enhanced colors, waves, strange movement, visions, visitations from the dead or living relatives or famous people, confusion of near and far, blending of items into each other, magnified vision (e.g., an ant crawling by appears huge), and the list goes on. Also syntestheia, seeing sounds, etc.
I don't put much stock in the half Lotus, except that sitting in a stable, balanced and comfortable posture of some manner facilitates such long sitting. I do not think that the Lotus works any particular physiological effect apart from that. Having the spine straight, upright and balanced is a good thing.
I also still have trouble with your description of there being "no thought" for weeks or months, as I have difficulty to understand any ability to function in life if so. Your definition of "no thought" must mean something else that could be described better. I am thinking (ha ha) that you mean moments of "no thought" and just bare awareness, coupled with a reduced thinking in daily life in which some aspects of thought (for example, complicated analytical problem solving and pondering) were not as engaged in most of the time. "No thought" just is a coma otherwise.