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My Awakening Experiences AKA Satori

Update: If you are able to read Hebrew, forget this post, and go read this. It is a much more useful description of an awakening experience.

I would like to tell you about two unique experiences in my life, unlike everything else I have ever experienced. These, I learned, are called “Satori” experiences.

Wikipedia says

In the Zen Buddhist tradition, satori refers to the experience of kenshō,[2] “seeing into one’s true nature”. Ken means “seeing,” shō means “nature” or “essence.”[2]

Satori and kenshō are commonly translated as enlightenment, a word that is also used to translate bodhi, prajna and buddhahood.


I don’t know about other people’s experience of satori, I can only tell you about my own. I can’t really describe them, reading about the experience pales in comparison to experiencing them.

My first satori happened about three years ago. It happened several days after my first ever intake of weed. I have no idea if that had anything to do with the experience or not, but I know it was a very small dose, I wasn’t feeling high or anything out of the ordinary in the days between my weed consumption and my satori experience. It felt like it didn’t affect me at all. And then satori happened.

I experienced utter bliss. I knew that my place in the world was right here, right now. Everything I did felt perfect. I could make no mistakes, even if I really tried. In fact, the very concept of mistakes didn’t make sense to me – anything that anyone ever did was perfect. It was what was needed at that time. I knew that I had a role  to play in the universe, and I was playing it perfectly. I was doing my important bit to progress the universe to its next, evolved state. I was important, not more than other people, but I was zoomed in on my own importance and felt that my existence mattered. I hardly needed sleep, for almost a week. I was going to sleep at 3 AM and waking up at 5 AM … just because my brain woke up me. I had to go do important work.

I was walking my dog in the garden, and felt how this moment was perfect. I had a headache from hardly sleeping for days, and the pain registered on my senses, but I felt that the pain is just a phenomenon I observed … it didn’t cause me any suffering whatsoever, it was just a signal from my body “I need more sleep”. Just something that was happening to my body, not to “my self”.

My second satori happened a few months ago, in Midburn, the Israeli Burning Man. It was a lot like the first one, with a few differences:

It was definitely unrelated to weed or any other drug. I am actually on a break from weed for the last few months, in order to diagnose my suspected bipolar symptoms, and I was clean when satori happened.

While the experience was similar to the first in that I felt the ultimate acceptance, peace, “All is well with the world and with my life” feeling … an interesting difference was that this time, I felt all kinds of what people usually describe as “negative emotions”. I was dancing alone in a crowded party, and felt alone. I felt afraid. I felt angry. The amazing thing, however, is that throughout feeling these so called  “negative emotions”, I simultaneously felt “This is still perfect. I am feeling exactly what I’m supposed to be feeling right now. The world is perfect. My life is perfect. I am supposed to feel alone right now, because I really didn’t connect to anyone in this party. I am supposed to be sad, or angry or whatever other emotion I was having”.

Usually when “negative emotions” arise, they are accompanied with a sense of  “damn, why I am feeling this right now. My life sucks”, or “I shouldn’t feel this right now, stop feeling it already!”. This time, my satori stayed through these strong emotions, and I was still feeling bliss coupled with all the other human emotions. Like my first satori, the second one lasted for a few days as well.

At first, after my first satori had ended, I felt quite alone. Nobody could understand what I went through. I failed to reproduce this ultimate high I had reached, and I couldn’t communicate what I felt. This year, something amazing happened. I met someone awesome who told me she’s had the same experience and me and told me the name “Satori” that categorizes this unique experience. She then followed to introduce me to a group of people who have had several different awakening experience, some of them having had dozens or more different satori experiences! I had people to talk to about this, and explore what they mean and how to see past them. I am still exploring this, I don’t have all the answers. But I’m seeking.


  1. yassik16mil:

    Thanks for writing and sharing this.

  2. talia:


  3. Gilly Barr:

    Hey Ron,
    You don’t know who i am, but I have heard quite a lot about you having worked at similar workplaces in the past, but at different times (delver a.k.a. sears). I also follow your blog for quite some time. You sound like a really talented and smart guy. I really like your candor and openness, especially around personal subjects like polyamory.
    But DUDE!! please see a shrink, preferably a psychiatrist! I don’t mean to be mean at all and I really hope this doesn’t offend you (I have issues as well, just like the rest of us), on the contrary – I’m writing this because I’m worried. I’m a Psychology student almost done with my bachelors degree (while working full time at a startup) so i’m not close to being an expert, but I can say that your recent blog posts indeed sound like the textbook definition of bipolar syndrome. The high’s, lo’s and the ‘Satori’ you’re describing all sound exactly like depressing and manic phases are for people suffering from bipolar syndrome.
    Just a worried soul, Gilly.

  4. ripper234:

    Thanks for your candor and openness Gilly 🙂

    I am already seeing both a psychologist and a psychiatrist, as well as other self-awareness processes I’m going through (The Sangha being a key part of that).

    My psychiatrist said a few months ago that he can’t diagnose me because I was smoking weed about once a month.
    As a result, I stopped smoking weed completely for 6 months, and am following up with my psychiatrist to get a better diagnosis.

    Luckily, I don’t think I actually have manic episodes, but more like hypomania.

    Thanks again for caring and speaking up!

    Did you read the update I published to this post?

    If you read this post, you definitely should go read this –

  5. Gilly Barr:

    I didn’t read the update you posted on it, i probably will though. I am familiar though with the question you linked to on quora, and many similar to it.
    Good luck with the treatment, and I truly hope you find success (whatever that may mean to you).

  6. ripper234:

    P.S – about the weed…

    I believe weed may no longer be good for me.
    I mean: I think it was good that I did it. It opened up my mind for me and let me being this process of healing I’m going through right now.
    Yes, healing.

    A friend told me that Bipolar episodes are often just a side effect of “waking up”. Of dealing with all the shit we piled on our soul during our lives.
    It’s an indicator of Great Change.

    I think the change I’m going through in the last few years is great for me.
    It’s scary sometimes, and difficult. But it’s good.

    I also think, that weed may no longer serve me. It’s possible I’ll never smoke another joint in my life.
    Well, “my life” is a long period of time. Anything can happen.
    But for the foreseeable future, I think weed may be dangerous to me. It triggers stuff.
    I’m already triggered enough as it is right now. I don’t need substances.