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I need some advise
Answer
10/13/20 5:21 PM
Hi, I'm from Poland and I'm a travel enthusiast who is currently staying in Sri Lanka for a few months. In 2019, I was in India for a couple of months with my friends and we met a monk-like figure in a village. People bring this person food and he just sits under a tree. I thought he was some kind of a con artist because he just eats people's food and does nothing besides that. We talked to this guy because my friend was interested and he talked about a lot of stuff. He was a very pleasant person and he spoke English well and I even argued with this person about various topics (religion, Jesus, etc) because at that time I wanted to feel superior and I tried to prove him that I know more than him and I'm a better person. I now understand that it was very ignorant of me.

Then he was like if you want to see God, do this, and told us to be aware of every sensation that arises in our body and thoughts and told to repeat this process every day. At that time, for me it seemed like some kind of occult practice but after a few days, I tried it because I was very curious. I didn't even tell my friend because I acted like I didn't care. I did this for like a day and I went to crazy hyper awareness state which I can't even describe. I couldn't even sleep. The strange thing was I started to see some flashlight-like effects when I try to sleep and the next day I started feeling like electricity passing through me. My head and whole body were feeling ecstatic. All of these sensations were pleasent but I stopped the thing because I was scared and this lasted for like a week. After a few months passed, I started feeling very miserable and I still feel miserable. I don't have faith in Jesus anymore and I don't even go to church. I don't go out much now and I want to go back to my old life but I can't because I'm curious about what happened. I strongly believe that this has something to do with that incidence. I started Googling about the sensations I had then found this forum with threads of very similar experiences. What's all of this? Any advice would be appreciated.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/13/20 6:41 PM as a reply to Jasinski.
Hi Jasinki, welcome to the Dharma Overground. 

You had a pretty classic experience of crossing the Arising & Passing Away and hitting the Dark Night. The good news is that what you describe is very common and this forum is full of people who have similar experiences. 

These first few sentences below describe experiences common to the Arising & Passing Away stage in the Progress of Insight. The Progess of Insight is a map of stages that meditators typically cycle through, especially in retreat situations.

You can read more about it here.


Then he was like if you want to see God, do this, and told us to be aware of every sensation that arises in our body and thoughts and told to repeat this process every day. At that time, for me it seemed like some kind of occult practice but after a few days, I tried it because I was very curious. I didn't even tell my friend because I acted like I didn't care. I did this for like a day and I went to crazy hyper awareness state which I can't even describe. I couldn't even sleep. The strange thing was I started to see some flashlight-like effects when I try to sleep and the next day I started feeling like electricity passing through me. My head and whole body were feeling ecstatic.



These next few sentences below describe the Dark Night (Dukkha Nanas) of the Progress of Insight, these commonly follow the Arising & Passing Away stage.

You can read more about these here.


All of these sensations were pleasent but I stopped the thing because I was scared and this lasted for like a week. After a few months passed, I started feeling very miserable and I still feel miserable. I don't have faith in Jesus anymore and I don't even go to church. I don't go out much now and I want to go back to my old life but I can't because I'm curious about what happened. I strongly believe that this has something to do with that incidence. 


Also, a great source that describes these stages in more detail is Ron Crouch's work, available here as a free ebook download. 


Are you still practicing meditation or have you stopped?

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/13/20 9:15 PM as a reply to Jasinski.
Jasinski:
Hi, I'm from Poland and I'm a travel enthusiast who is currently staying in Sri Lanka for a few months. In 2019, I was in India for a couple of months with my friends and we met a monk-like figure in a village. People bring this person food and he just sits under a tree. I thought he was some kind of a con artist because he just eats people's food and does nothing besides that. We talked to this guy because my friend was interested and he talked about a lot of stuff. He was a very pleasant person and he spoke English well and I even argued with this person about various topics (religion, Jesus, etc) because at that time I wanted to feel superior and I tried to prove him that I know more than him and I'm a better person. I now understand that it was very ignorant of me.

Then he was like if you want to see God, do this, and told us to be aware of every sensation that arises in our body and thoughts and told to repeat this process every day. At that time, for me it seemed like some kind of occult practice but after a few days, I tried it because I was very curious. I didn't even tell my friend because I acted like I didn't care. I did this for like a day and I went to crazy hyper awareness state which I can't even describe. I couldn't even sleep. The strange thing was I started to see some flashlight-like effects when I try to sleep and the next day I started feeling like electricity passing through me. My head and whole body were feeling ecstatic. All of these sensations were pleasent but I stopped the thing because I was scared and this lasted for like a week. After a few months passed, I started feeling very miserable and I still feel miserable. I don't have faith in Jesus anymore and I don't even go to church. I don't go out much now and I want to go back to my old life but I can't because I'm curious about what happened. I strongly believe that this has something to do with that incidence. I started Googling about the sensations I had then found this forum with threads of very similar experiences. What's all of this? Any advice would be appreciated.
aloha jas,

   Meeting a Real Person can make your whole life seem like the sham it really is. Conventional wisdom, conventional religion are just more shams. The activities of humans are absurd. The practice of actually being present - as opposed to diverting oneself as people normally do - leads to the accumulation of energy and the consequent need to apply that energy in a non-absurd manner.

   You are on your own, bra. Aka the existential predicament. No one is going to die for you, you will do that alone. Living, too, requires self-motivation. A busload of faith. Take your stand and be your self, come what may. Let your yes be yes and your no be no. Grow into your character, trust your essential good nature and natural ability to cope and make sense. Find that core within your heart, the Heart's Desire, and make it your energy source. The Religion of Love, fueled by longing.

   Your fear is the stumbling block. You faced the red pill/blue pill moment and bailed. You're stuck between conventional reality and wonderland, still wondering how deep the rabbit hole goes. Pray to jesus for help, or make the buddha your servant.

   Your sincerity, innocence and spontaneity are your strengths, trust them.

terry




LET THE BEAUTY WE LOVE BE WHAT WE DO:
Selections from the Poems of Jelalludin Rumi

Edited by
Ric Amante,
Mio Cohen & Ray Soulard, Jr.



LOVE DOGS

One night a man was crying,
                                            Allah! Allah!
His lips grew sweet with the praising,
until a cynic said,
                         “So! I have heard you
calling out, but have you ever
gotten any response?”

The man had no answer to that.
He quit praying and fell into a confused sleep.

He dreamed he saw Khidr, the guide of souls,
in a thick, green foliage.
                                    "Why did you stop praising?"
“Because I’ve never heard anything back.”
                                                                  "This longing
you express is the return message.”

The grief you cry out from
draws you toward union.
Your pure sadness
that wants help
is the secret cup.

Listen to the moan of a dog for its master.
That whining is the connection.

There are love dogs
no one knows the names of.

Give your life
to be one of them.




from the rubaiyat of omar khayyam
trans fitzgerald


LXXIII

 Ah, Love! could thou and I with Fate conspire
 To grasp this sorry Scheme of Things entire,
   Would not we shatter it to bits—and then
 Re-mould it nearer to the Heart's Desire!


RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 9:34 AM as a reply to Jasinski.
Jasinski:
After a few months passed, I started feeling very miserable and I still feel miserable. I don't have faith in Jesus anymore and I don't even go to church.

Are you saying that you feeling miserable is tied to your lack of faith in Jesus, or is it not related to that? 

When you say 'faith in' what exactly do you mean by that?  What does it mean to 'believe in' something?

Were you raised in a Christian setting?


With Metta,
John

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 10:39 AM as a reply to Jasinski.
Jasinski:
Hi, I'm from Poland and I'm a travel enthusiast who is currently staying in Sri Lanka for a few months. In 2019, I was in India for a couple of months with my friends and we met a monk-like figure in a village. People bring this person food and he just sits under a tree. I thought he was some kind of a con artist because he just eats people's food and does nothing besides that. We talked to this guy because my friend was interested and he talked about a lot of stuff. He was a very pleasant person and he spoke English well and I even argued with this person about various topics (religion, Jesus, etc) because at that time I wanted to feel superior and I tried to prove him that I know more than him and I'm a better person. I now understand that it was very ignorant of me.

Then he was like if you want to see God, do this, and told us to be aware of every sensation that arises in our body and thoughts and told to repeat this process every day. At that time, for me it seemed like some kind of occult practice but after a few days, I tried it because I was very curious. I didn't even tell my friend because I acted like I didn't care. I did this for like a day and I went to crazy hyper awareness state which I can't even describe. I couldn't even sleep. The strange thing was I started to see some flashlight-like effects when I try to sleep and the next day I started feeling like electricity passing through me. My head and whole body were feeling ecstatic. All of these sensations were pleasent but I stopped the thing because I was scared and this lasted for like a week. After a few months passed, I started feeling very miserable and I still feel miserable. I don't have faith in Jesus anymore and I don't even go to church. I don't go out much now and I want to go back to my old life but I can't because I'm curious about what happened. I strongly believe that this has something to do with that incidence. I started Googling about the sensations I had then found this forum with threads of very similar experiences. What's all of this? Any advice would be appreciated.


Your experience had nothing to do with Jesus. And the practices the monk told you to do will not help you see God. He only said that to trick you into doing them because he believes they will help you.

Those strange experiences you had were caused by your nervous system being used in a way that you are not accoustomed to and it was not designed to handle.

Have you tried talking to your pastor?

There are also Christian forms of meditation. You can find out more by googling "contemplative prayer" and "centering prayer". There are various forms so look at several search results if you are interested.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 10:46 AM as a reply to Zachary.
Zachary:


You had a pretty classic experience of crossing the Arising & Passing Away and hitting the Dark Night. The good news is that what you describe is very common and this forum is full of people who have similar experiences. 



I realize you are stating a conventional view point. So I don't mean to argue with you personally when I disagree with this view.


But in my opinion a more correct explanation is that vipassana is dangerous and frequently causes mental illness. Particularly, beginners should not do too much.  Also everyone who learns meditation should be warned about the potential harm it can cause.

I strongly disagree that depression is normal and to be expected. And I also think it is harmful to mislead people into thinking vipassana is safe. People should understand the dangers and they should only try it in small amounts and only do more if they feel comfortable, and they should understand they can stop doing it if it causes problems.

I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race. I don't consider this to be a bad thing necessarily, it can lead to enhanced well being.  However it should be a conscious choice made when people recognize that striving is the cause of their suffering, not because they are unable to function because of depression. And beginners should be told of this effect on ambition rather than a lie (it will let them see God) to trick them into trying this dangerous practice.

I see that monk's actions, and the actions of many others who push vipassana on unsuspecting victims, to be reckless and harmful. He may have been well meaning, but he messed up someone's life and that is not part the Buddha's teachings or how a monk should be sharing the dharma.

I am sorry to be so disargeeable but I see so many posts on this forum by people who have been harmed by this dangerous practice. I wish people would wake up and do more to prevent the harm it does.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 10:57 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

I am sorry to be so disargeeable but I see so many posts on this forum by people who have been harmed by this dangerous practice. I wish people would wake up and do more to prevent the harm it does.

Jim, I understand that you wish things were not the way they are, but what advice are you actually giving Jasinski here?  How is this supposed to help him?

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 11:08 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

I am sorry to be so disargeeable but I see so many posts on this forum by people who have been harmed by this dangerous practice. I wish people would wake up and do more to prevent the harm it does.


Also, are you of the opinion that Vipassana meditation causes more harm to people than any other religions, say for example, fundamentalist Christianity, or extremist Islamic groups?  I'm just curious why you feel like it is your duty to 'protect people from' this one particular niche website that probably comprises, oh i don't know, 0.0000001% of all religion in the world?

In my case I feel like vipassana has been wonderful for me and helped me get over alot of the trauma that I attribute to being raised in a fundamentalist Christian, patriarchal setting (I can't be sure if that's really the cause).  Everyone's different, though.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 12:41 PM as a reply to Zachary.
I'll check it out. Thanks a lot Zachary. And about the pratice, no I'm not doing it anymore.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 4:16 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

I realize you are stating a conventional view point. So I don't mean to argue with you personally when I disagree with this view.


Gotcha. I offered this information to Jasinski entirely in the interest of harm-reduction, so I think perhaps we are both working at the same goal here. It's been my experience as well as the experience of many meditators I've talked to, that their initial encounter with the maps was stabalizing, and helped to contextualize what was otherwise a disorienting ordeal. I believe the maps are most useful as a tool for normalizing a meditator's experience, especially for those (like Jasinski) who have recently and clearly crossed into A&P territory and are now mired in more difficult terrain. 


I strongly disagree that depression is normal and to be expected. And I also think it is harmful to mislead people into thinking vipassana is safe. People should understand the dangers and they should only try it in small amounts and only do more if they feel comfortable, and they should understand they can stop doing it if it causes problems.

I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race. I don't consider this to be a bad thing necessarily, it can lead to enhanced well being.  However it should be a conscious choice made when people recognize that striving is the cause of their suffering, not because they are unable to function because of depression. And beginners should be told of this effect on ambition rather than a lie (it will let them see God) to trick them into trying this dangerous practice.

I see that monk's actions, and the actions of many others who push vipassana on unsuspecting victims, to be reckless and harmful. He may have been well meaning, but he messed up someone's life and that is not part the Buddha's teachings or how a monk should be sharing the dharma.

I am sorry to be so disargeeable but I see so many posts on this forum by people who have been harmed by this dangerous practice. I wish people would wake up and do more to prevent the harm it does.


You say above that you strongly disagree that depression is normal and to be expected from meditation. Then in the very next paragraph you say "I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race." Which is it? Hard to tell what you're getting at here. 

I agree with some of what you say here, and believe that meditators should absolutely go into these practices with informed consent as to the dangers and difficulties that they can present. Dry insight practices like vipassana and noting are especially prone to producing meditative basket-cases. I agree that these practices can be harmful, but at this point Jasinski has already passed a "point of no return" and in my view would benefit from taking a look at the Progress of Insight. Make sense? 

If Jasinski wants to check out Christian-oriented contemplative practices, I also second the work of Thomas Keating and Centering Prayer. As a final aside, I really don't think it's helpful to tell someone that a monk (whom you do not know) is trying to "trick them". 

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 12:57 PM as a reply to J W.
Hi J W, thanks for replying. Yes, I’m a Catholic and I grew up in a very catholic environment. I don't know how to explain that. For example, I used to belive that Jesus will save me. Now I doubt it and I don't even know why.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 1:06 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Thanks for the reply Jim. No, but I did talk to a therapist. She thought that my sensations are related to anxiety but the vibrating and electricity like sensations I had are very real. Sometimes I still get mild sensations inside my forehead.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 1:19 PM as a reply to terry.
Thanks for the kind words Terry.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 1:30 PM as a reply to Jasinski.
Jasinski:
Hi J W, thanks for replying. Yes, I’m a Catholic and I grew up in a very catholic environment. I don't know how to explain that. For example, I used to belive that Jesus will save me. Now I doubt it and I don't even know why.

Jesus will save you from what?  I don't believe in such a place as Hell where you burn eternally, I think this concept was invented a thousand years after Jesus died by weak men who were seeking power. You will be hard pressed to find any mention of Hell in the Bible as it is described by those people.


I don't think that meditation / Buddhism stands in contradiction to Christianity, personally. In my experience, and I also come from a strict Christian background, it is easier to find ways to incorporate the two beliefs systems and find the ways in which they compliment each other rather than to just turn completely from your upbringing, that ripping away of previous beliefs can itself be traumatic.  In that way I do agree with some of what Jim and others were saying earlier.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 2:15 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:

I see that monk's actions, and the actions of many others who push vipassana on unsuspecting victims, to be reckless and harmful. He may have been well meaning, but he messed up someone's life and that is not part the Buddha's teachings or how a monk should be sharing the dharma.
I do not see anyone's life messed up. Where do you see it?

Process of getting to know yourself can be scary and stopping it does not help. It creates issue that doesn't even exist other than it is now called an issue and treated like it was a problem.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 2:16 PM as a reply to Jasinski.
The technical aspect of instructions is solid. Simple. I like it.
You will have to decide if what you experience is God or something else but whatever you experience please do not take it too seriously.

Take a look at https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/mahasi/progress.html
As you can see fear is normal part of meditation as are some other unpleasant sensations.
It is best to not block or control anything and just be attentive. There will be also pleasant experiences.

It takes some time to get to know yourself from inside-out but it is worth it.
Not so much effects you get but just knowing yourself. This is the best part in all of this.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 3:05 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Zachary:


You had a pretty classic experience of crossing the Arising & Passing Away and hitting the Dark Night. The good news is that what you describe is very common and this forum is full of people who have similar experiences. 



I realize you are stating a conventional view point. So I don't mean to argue with you personally when I disagree with this view.


But in my opinion a more correct explanation is that vipassana is dangerous and frequently causes mental illness. Particularly, beginners should not do too much.  Also everyone who learns meditation should be warned about the potential harm it can cause.

I strongly disagree that depression is normal and to be expected. And I also think it is harmful to mislead people into thinking vipassana is safe. People should understand the dangers and they should only try it in small amounts and only do more if they feel comfortable, and they should understand they can stop doing it if it causes problems.

I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race. I don't consider this to be a bad thing necessarily, it can lead to enhanced well being.  However it should be a conscious choice made when people recognize that striving is the cause of their suffering, not because they are unable to function because of depression. And beginners should be told of this effect on ambition rather than a lie (it will let them see God) to trick them into trying this dangerous practice.

I see that monk's actions, and the actions of many others who push vipassana on unsuspecting victims, to be reckless and harmful. He may have been well meaning, but he messed up someone's life and that is not part the Buddha's teachings or how a monk should be sharing the dharma.

I am sorry to be so disargeeable but I see so many posts on this forum by people who have been harmed by this dangerous practice. I wish people would wake up and do more to prevent the harm it does.


   Let me guess: you also believe that consuming marijuana "frequently takes away a person's ambition" and causes them to "drop out of the rat race." Pushers give it to unsuspecting victims, and it leads to harder stuff and addiction and all sorts of mental illness. The analogy holds, I think, because no quantity of marijuana has ever been known to kill anyone. Nor can any amount of insight or sitting in silence.

   I think that if we all gave up ambition and dropped out of the rat race the world would take a marked turn to the good.

   "Turn on, tune in, drop out." (tim leary)

terry

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 3:09 PM as a reply to Jasinski.
Jasinski:
Thanks for the kind words Terry.

(bows)

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 3:48 PM as a reply to J W.
J W:
Jasinski:
Hi J W, thanks for replying. Yes, I’m a Catholic and I grew up in a very catholic environment. I don't know how to explain that. For example, I used to belive that Jesus will save me. Now I doubt it and I don't even know why.

Jesus will save you from what?  I don't believe in such a place as Hell where you burn eternally, I think this concept was invented a thousand years after Jesus died by weak men who were seeking power. You will be hard pressed to find any mention of Hell in the Bible as it is described by those people.


I don't think that meditation / Buddhism stands in contradiction to Christianity, personally. In my experience, and I also come from a strict Christian background, it is easier to find ways to incorporate the two beliefs systems and find the ways in which they compliment each other rather than to just turn completely from your upbringing, that ripping away of previous beliefs can itself be traumatic.  In that way I do agree with some of what Jim and others were saying earlier.

   You mean you don't think ritual cannibalism will transform you without any effort on your part? Say ten hail marys and you are forgiven? Perhaps if you wear costumes, repeat the rituals in a dead language you don't understand, burn incense and play religious music it will seem more profound. Especially when you literally learn your prayers at mother's knee.

   Emperors vespasian and titus, self-proclaimed gods, invented christianity (among many other official religions) as another tool with which to destroy their enemies, in this case the jews, and they succeeded beyond their wildest dreams in that regard. It was cleverly done and the new testament constitutes one long black joke at the jews' expense. Lots of standard orphic religious tropes were incorporated to give it verisimilitude, but it was always the roman church by design. Jesus himself was an invention, styled after daniel and backdated forty years to predict "the second coming" of the messiah in the person of titus, who destroyed the "wicked and rebellious" jews who hated taxes, emperor worship, and the boots of roman soldiers on their necks. Drunks, whores and tax collectors were ok, but rebellion was wicked and ungodly. Even now, sinners are ok but the sect down the street who practices a little differently are all going to hell. It was always all about the politics of mind control and fooling people into submission against their best interests. The final (one hopes) evil exhalation of christianity was the holocaust, the natural outcome of the gospel of jew hate.

   There has been lots of good mysticism couched in christian metaphors. I wear a t-shirt to market sometimes (alternating with my jacob blake shirt with the seven red bulletholes in the back) which says "meister eckhart," one of many christians I greatly admire. But knowing what we know today, the christian churh should go the way of those columbus statues they are pulling down everywhere. When I think of christianity, I think of what the conquistadors did to america, and the germans to europe.


terry




from the rubaiyat of omar khayyam, trans fitzgerald:


LXXIX

What! From his helpless Creature be repaid
 Pure Gold for what he lent him dross-allay'd—
   Sue for a Debt he never did contract,
 And cannot answer—Oh the sorry trade!


LXXX.

 Oh Thou, who didst with pitfall and with gin
 Beset the Road I was to wander in,
   Thou wilt not with Predestined Evil round
 Enmesh, and then impute my Fall to Sin!



LXXXI.

 Oh Thou, who Man of baser Earth didst make,
 And ev'n with Paradise devise the Snake:
   For all the Sin wherewith the Face of Man
 Is blacken'd—Man's forgiveness give—and take!

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 7:29 PM as a reply to Zachary.
Zachary:
...
You say above that you strongly disagree that depression is normal and to be expected from meditation. Then in the very next paragraph you say "I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race." Which is it? Hard to tell what you're getting at here. 
...

You are making a false equivalence between leaving the rat race and depression. 

I think that is obvious, but I elaborated on the difference a few sentances later.  

I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race. I don't consider this to be a bad thing necessarily, it can lead to enhanced well being.  However it should be a conscious choice made when people recognize that striving is the cause of their suffering, not because they are unable to function because of depression. And beginners should be told of this effect on ambition rather than a lie (it will let them see God) to trick them into trying this dangerous practice.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 7:27 PM as a reply to terry.
terry:


   Let me guess: you also believe that consuming marijuana "frequently takes away a person's ambition" and causes them to "drop out of the rat race." Pushers give it to unsuspecting victims, and it leads to harder stuff and addiction and all sorts of mental illness. The analogy holds, I think, because no quantity of marijuana has ever been known to kill anyone. Nor can any amount of insight or sitting in silence.

   I think that if we all gave up ambition and dropped out of the rat race the world would take a marked turn to the good.

   "Turn on, tune in, drop out." (tim leary)

terry

Please don't put words in my mouth or try to read my mind. I didn't say anything about marijuana and your fantasies about my views on it have no relevance to my post. 


I wrote this in the part you quoted:

I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race. I don't consider this to be a bad thing necessarily, it can lead to enhanced well being. However it should be a conscious choice made when people recognize that striving is the cause of their suffering, not because they are unable to function because of depression. And beginners should be told of this effect on ambition rather than a lie (it will let them see God) to trick them into trying this dangerous practice.

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/14/20 8:05 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
Zachary:
...
You say above that you strongly disagree that depression is normal and to be expected from meditation. Then in the very next paragraph you say "I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race." Which is it? Hard to tell what you're getting at here. 
...

You are making a false equivalence between leaving the rat race and depression. 

I think that is obvious, but I elaborated on the difference a few sentances later.  

I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race. I don't consider this to be a bad thing necessarily, it can lead to enhanced well being.  However it should be a conscious choice made when people recognize that striving is the cause of their suffering, not because they are unable to function because of depression. And beginners should be told of this effect on ambition rather than a lie (it will let them see God) to trick them into trying this dangerous practice.

Cool, I see where you're coming from. I think I was a little wired up writing that post looking back and had selective hearing. Take care. 

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/16/20 9:02 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Jim Smith:
terry:


   Let me guess: you also believe that consuming marijuana "frequently takes away a person's ambition" and causes them to "drop out of the rat race." Pushers give it to unsuspecting victims, and it leads to harder stuff and addiction and all sorts of mental illness. The analogy holds, I think, because no quantity of marijuana has ever been known to kill anyone. Nor can any amount of insight or sitting in silence.

   I think that if we all gave up ambition and dropped out of the rat race the world would take a marked turn to the good.

   "Turn on, tune in, drop out." (tim leary)

terry

Please don't put words in my mouth or try to read my mind. I didn't say anything about marijuana and your fantasies about my views on it have no relevance to my post. 


I wrote this in the part you quoted:

I have observed that meditation frequently takes away a person's ambition and meditators often drop out of the rat race. I don't consider this to be a bad thing necessarily, it can lead to enhanced well being. However it should be a conscious choice made when people recognize that striving is the cause of their suffering, not because they are unable to function because of depression. And beginners should be told of this effect on ambition rather than a lie (it will let them see God) to trick them into trying this dangerous practice.

   I think the "dangers" of vipassana are in the mind of the beholder. To call this practice "dangerous" and warn people is ludicrous.

   You didn't say my guess was wrong, but I will refrain from guessing your views in the future, since you object. Sorry.

   You and I agree that depression is neither normal nor an acceptable byproduct of practice (I guess). I don't think depression has anything to do with practice. to the contrary, practice is a way of dealing with depression. This whole dark night business is misconceived, in my opinion. Certainly depression is not to be considered some sort of rite of passage or sign of progress. If you are depressed, dig deeper.

   Beginners should be encouraged to meditate, as the buddha did. People with mental health problems can still benefit from meditation, but not if they are encouraged to blame their problems on god, so to speak.

   My daddy used to say, "A fool can drown in a cup of coffee." (I vow to save them all.)

terry

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/16/20 9:20 PM as a reply to Jim Smith.
hey, jim, did you know:

meditation can help you to "see" "god"...

just try fifteen minutes a day for a week and you'll be hooked...

(pass it on)

(oh, there is a danger you might want to stop lying and cheating and stealing from the poor after you see "god")


t




“If the doors of perception were cleansed every thing would appear to man as it is, Infinite. For man has closed himself up, till he sees all things thro' narrow chinks of his cavern.”

― William Blake, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell

RE: I need some advise
Answer
10/16/20 9:24 PM as a reply to terry.
terry:
hey, jim, did you know:

meditation can help you to "see" "god"...

just try fifteen minutes a day for a week and you'll be hooked...

(pass it on)

(oh, there is a danger you might want to stop lying and cheating and stealing from the poor after you see "god")


t




“If the doors of perception were cleansed every thing would appear to man as it is, Infinite. For man has closed himself up, till he sees all things thro' narrow chinks of his cavern.”

― William Blake, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell


what earthly use is "ambition" to a buddhist? rush to extinction?

unless it is, "I vow to save them all"...