Setting aside the conventional meanings of altered state for a while, what comes up when I explore it for myself?
I find that everything is an altered state. Content of experience is always new, fresh and different, so always an altered state. Always different.
If I shift my eyes, even slightly, there is a different feeling. If I change my posture, a different experience. If I eat something, again different. If my body is not doing too well, another state. Any change within content of experience is a different state.
And I also find that each of these states resonate with and bring up particular groups of stories, emotions and actions in the world.
I am noticing this clearly now as my body is off due to some food I ate yesterday. Knots are coming up that I normally don’t notice when my body-mind is more functional, so I now have an opportunity to explore these in more detail. I can fully allow and be with the experience, inquire into the stories associated with these knots.
There are many gifts of states. They themselves is a different experience. They filter the world differently for us. And – maybe most importantly – they each invite in particular stories and emotions which we can then examine and allow.