[Comment by Red_dust]I can say I have experienced bare awareness, through working breath/insight meditation and that is the closest I can come to what you describe in your Zazen method. I work in resting in this awareness 24/7. I am not very good at this, so this is where practice is for. There is a flow of data, data slows down and stops, so does breath, so does thoughts, nothing disturbs sense doors and sitting does not exist, there are no moments either during this time in meditation and there is this awareness, even if sitting goes on for hours.
What you describe as "bare awareness" is not (if I am understanding you) what I was taught and teach as our manner of "Shikantaza" in Master Dogen's way (not too imply, of course, that our way is the only way to sit Zazen). As opposed to a 'one pointed' focus, ours is an "open and spacious" awareness focused on everything and nothing, here and everywhere and no place in particular. I would describe it as being fully present in this world, yet seeing though this world. Such one pointed states of Samadhi as you describe may and do come, but we do not try to force such states or stay there (in your own words) "24/7". In fact, it seems to us (if I may speak for myself ... other "Just Sitting" practitioners may have other views) that such a state as you describe removes one from the totality of reality into a narrow place where reality is stripped or removed of its variety ... Instead, we think that this real world, where we are, is the very place realization must be manifest. Otherwise, it is like an empty stage without a play, actors or theatre to bring it to life.
On the other hand, what we experience in "Just Sitting" is (it seems to me) everything you describe too. How is that possible? Well, I would say that it is as if we are sitting with several seemingly very different perspectives at once (different but whole, harmonious and 'not two'). So, even while sitting in this world of time and space, sitting in the mud and dust, eyes not closed (we sit with eyes a bit open) and allowing thoughts to come and go like clouds through a clear, blue cloudless sky, amid thought and delusion ... simultaneously, without a gap ... we taste that without data, breath, thought, disturbance, sitting or not sitting, delusion, time's flow ... blue sky without a cloud or even thought of "sky" or "blue".
You also write ...
[Comment by Red_dust]Or thoughts are flowing, body may hurt, breath is boring, minutes drag on for hours and this awareness does not move, it's like a rock that the data from sense doors flows around. This is as far as I have been able to go.
For us, it is true whether thoughts flow or do not flow, body hurts or is fully forgotten, breath is felt or dropped from mind, minutes drag on or time stands still, if we are a rock or if we are rolling ... it is all the same, each the immediate and wondrous manifestation of enlightenment.
[Comment by Red_dust] I do not understand and have never heard of a moment of Zazen, as you describe. For me it does not make sense, a moment is a unit of something and limited in scope, unless you are talking about principles which are describing something that is not a thing, like the eternal moment called now. In my Buddhist studies reality as it is is not described this way.
Yes, the "this moment" I describe is perfectly whole and complete unto itself, yet without borders and duration. It is not long or short. It contains all moments and no moments in "this one moment".
[Comment by Red_dust] If I were to describe awakening per my limited understanding it would like like an eye in a hurricane.
This awareness is like the eye of a storm, unmoving, no blinking...
This is a very good analogy (being formally from Florida, and having sat Zazen during a couple of hurricanes, I can relate!!). We do sit at the "eye of the hurricane". We also sit at the outside of the hurricane, above and below the hurricane, in every raindrop and gust of wind, in the floods, broken buildings and broken hearts it brings. Nothing is to be rejected.
Does that make it clearer?
Anyway, that is my understanding.