RE: A Log

Kevin Von James, modified 5 Days ago.

A Log

Posts: 6 Join Date: 2/20/21 Recent Posts
 2/20/21:

I feel like I need a new place to share my journey.

2020 was a very confusing and difficult time for me.

I had my mind fixated on various material goals. Money, sex with the most attractive women in the US, and fame/status.

I have recently come to an experiental understanding that none of those things will give me lasting happiness or fulfillment.

The last 3 days have been a binge of spiritual reading + youtube videos as well as resuming my concentration meditation practice.

The last week has encompassed many realizations for me.

I realize that building and managing systems in order to produce money is not very complex - it's quite simple, but it does require me to channel my focus.

I realize that there are so many subtle ways I have been poisoning my clarity of focus.

I view my mind like a murky glass of water. Concentration meditation purifies it to crystal clear understanding and proficiency.

Things like social media consumption, drinking alcohol, and eating unheathly foods - these all muddy the water.

I understand that both my material and spiritual goals require a mind sharpened with concentration meditation.

Thus, I'm making it an effort to resume my practice, and engage in insight practice as well.

Today, I meditated for 5 minutes, did 2 cycles of wim hof breathing, and then meditated another 10 minutes before consuming .5g of psilocybin mushrooms. I then returned to my seat, and meditated another 30 minutes or so. I noticed that the relative equanimity feelings I had been feeling the last few days were somewhat disturbed. The mushrooms seemingly re-activated my ego to a degree, perhaps I was dissociated, and I definitely felt some various levels of trauma rise to the surface, nothing major, but it definitely became difficult to maintain focus on the breath.

I ate some fruit, and my mind got sucked into various thought-trains, the creative-thinking that I lust for with my psilocybin microdosing. I've been microdosing about 2x/week for the last 5 months, taking anywhere from .3g-1g.

I then returned to my eyes closed meditation, put in some ear plugs, and had some interesting visuals. The funny thing is, I feel like I was tripping "harder" the last few days, and the mushrooms almost felt as a return to normality. They are unpredictable.

Anyways, I definitely felt some minor "accomplishments" and deeper understanding of my existence.

This is the first time in a long time that I have microdosed and then directly channeled it into meditation. It was interesting how easily I was sucked into meditation and the amount of visuals just being on a microdose. I will probably not take mushrooms again for at least 4-5 days, but I definitely thought this was an interesting experience in many ways, although I'm still fairly detached right now.

I have a material goal of both making money with my business and making youtube videos that get lots of views.

I don't have a deep purpose for these goals. I understand that the results of these will not provide lasting happiness.

But, today I thought of the one core message I want to impart on others with my youtube videos, which is quite simply:

"Life is a playground."

I will probably do a 10-20 minute concentration meditation right after posting this.

I'm not sure what my goal is with this journal, other than a place to store my thoughts and my journey, as I feel spirituality is something I've largely blocked out over the last year with a focus instead on striving hopelessly, thinking that if I can just accomplish something, I will be happy, and I will get approval from my parents. So, I'm hoping that returning to 30min-1hour+ of concentration meditation a day will give me more progress and fulfillment than my scatter-minded, "seeking" self.
 
George S, modified 5 Days ago.

RE: A Log

Posts: 1226 Join Date: 2/26/19 Recent Posts
Hi Kevin,

Welcome to the DhO! Thanks for sharing openly your journey thus far. The main thing in your post which jumped out at me is this:

I feel spirituality is something I've largely blocked out over the last year with a focus instead on striving hopelessly, thinking that if I can just accomplish something, I will be happy, and I will get approval from my parents.

The need to gain their parents' approval is something which is imprinted deeply in children when the parents use them to meet their own emotional needs and expectations, rather than accepting them for how they are. It's great that you already recognize it is pushing you into hopeless striving for things which won't bring any lasting happiness or fulfillment. Many people spend their entire lives driven miserably by this need without ever realizing it. If you are interested in a deeper understanding of this important topic then I would recommend Alice Miller's The Drama Of The Gifted Child and John Bradshaw's Homecoming - Reclaiming and Healing Your Inner Child

Best Wishes,
George 
Kevin's Existence, modified 4 Days ago.

RE: A Log

Posts: 6 Join Date: 2/20/21 Recent Posts
Thank you for the warm welcome, George.

I appreciate your thoughts on my tendency to seek my parents approval. It is funny because it has certainly caused cartoonish levels of self-sabotage for me. It is mainly due to the fact that my parents show little positive interest in what I do and often times have given me negative stimulus when I'm doing something positive.

It definitely does not affect me as much as it used to, but I do still find myself slipping into that tendency, so I will definitely check out the books you recommended.

I'm really interested to see what I can accomplish both materially and spiritually if I let go of toxic drivers and values and instead focus on "higher vibration" motivations.
 
Kevin's Existence, modified 4 Days ago.

RE: A Log

Posts: 6 Join Date: 2/20/21 Recent Posts
2/21/21:

Today I woke up at 12:30PM, another long sleep of 11 hours or so. I've been sleeping a lot lately, even though supposedly meditation is supposed to be more restful!

I immediately dived into my new morning meditation practice, concentration meditation for 5 min, followed by 2 cycles of wim hof breathing, and then another ~30 minutes of concentration meditation. To be honest, I'm not exactly measuring my meditation time, because I prefer to set small timers (5, 10 min) and see if I can maintain focus on the breath the whole time without becoming consumed with thought.

I noticed more thoughts were coming in this morning than usual. Which is interesting. Random thoughts of all kinds. It is definitely interesting to think how these thoughts are all competing for my energy and attention, and I'm starting to see how every thought/desire is essentially the same. It's just a distraction pulling my mental focus away in some direction.

I did a 25 minute hatha yoga practice I found on youtube right after the meditation, which felt great. I have tons of tension in my upper back and shoulders right now, so I've set an intention to do yoga every morning, until I can release that tension, and then perhaps I'll get back into weightlifting.

I feel very relaxed right now, and overall a good mood emoticon

I'm experimenting with going vegan as well. The last 2 days I have consumed 0 meat. I do find myself craving meat, and I feel as though I often use food as an escape. Overall, meat seems to lower my level of presence and make me lethargic. So, I'm thinking that I'll be able to achieve higher levels of focus without meat. For now I'm eating fruits and nuts and vegan protein shakes. Although I do still consume bovine collagen powder in my protein shakes, although this is different than consuming cooked meat.

So we will see how that goes, I anticipate more cravings, and it will probably require will power for the first 5 days or so.

As for today, I'm going to focus on having fun with my new concentration "powers", perhaps directing them towards installing systems in my business.

I'm pretty obsessed with the idea of simplicity. I think everything in my life can be much simpler. And I believe there are simple ways for me to make money, which will make it easier to devote time towards my spiritual path, and also help others.
Kevin's Existence, modified 3 Days ago.

RE: A Log

Posts: 6 Join Date: 2/20/21 Recent Posts
 2/22/21:

Crazy to me how the month of february has flown by. I feel very good resuming my samatha practice.

Today I went 5 min, 1 cycle wim hof, 5 min, 10 min, 1 cycle wim hof, 10 min
So roughly 40-50min of total meditation. I then followed it with a simple 10 min yoga sequence.

The meditation and yoga combined seems to have my shoulder and back pain feeling a lot better, even though I've only been doing it for a week! I believe having this as a foundation is phenomenal for me, and the only thing I really need to keep track of is distractions or hindrances that pull me off of my path.

I woke up with the sun today at 7:30AM, only getting about 6 hours of sleep, which is unusual for me. However, I've so far felt an even energy today (writing this at 6PM). This is really quite phenomenal for me, because if I wake up earlier, then my levels of productivity and overall health should be much higher.

I did fall into a "thought-train" trap using my concentration meditation powers. When my concentration is strongly developed through samatha meditation, I enter "access concentration" as I believe it is called, which can basically cause me to get sucked into a task of infinite concentration, like reading a book in it's entirety, or watching an entire TV series at 1.5x speed.

Last night, I began watching a 37 episode anime called "Death Note" (20 min episodes). Which is funny because I've barely watched any animes in my life. Still, I persisted in watching 20 episodes in a row, then deciding I wanted to finish it this morning, before my meditation. I then went though 1 hour of an audio course in learning japanese, which required quite a bit of concentration.

While these are not "bad" things (I enjoyed the show, and I believe learning japanese to be a good use of my time) it does show the power of concentration meditation if I can simply point my "access concentration" towards simple, delineated tasks. I'm quite curious to see what I can learn and accomplish in this more focused and mentally fluid state. I feel like samatha meditation allows me to eliminate distracting thoughts, when normally I will entertain them.

This idea of a thought-train is interesting to me. I believe it is kind of like the "cause-and-effect" discussed here... all it takes is one thought "I should watch an anime" to lead to 8+ hours of watching it, and then learning japanese. So it is simply interesting to watch the mind latch onto a thought-train and not let go.

It felt like I was trying to escape something, but I'm not sure exactly what, as I really have no pressing/urgent tasks to avoid.

I also feel that perhaps I was trying to cope with the whole "going vegan" thing, and trying to distract myself from meat cravings.

Anyways, it's in the past now, and I've decided that I'm going to go through this japanese audio course before watching any more anime, so that at least I can begin to understand the words.

Going vegan could definitely be the reason that I slept only 6 hours yesterday and still have energy today. So it feels good to know that my body is progressing. This could definitely be a helpful thing in many ways. I've also noticed that my energy levels are much more stable overall. I don't feel the major highs and lows of eating hard-to-digest cooked meat, and I've noticed a slight detox effect as well.

For tomorrow, I intend to return to meditating right after waking up. And for today, I would like to do my vocal warmup, as I've been skipping it for sometime.

This journal has been helpful so far to me. Perhaps I can even add in a day and night journal one day.

 
Kevin's Existence, modified 2 Days ago.

RE: A Log

Posts: 6 Join Date: 2/20/21 Recent Posts
 
2/23/21:

Today I woke up feeling pretty rough, my back was feeling more sore than yesterday and my knees feeling sore as well. I believe this is because I haven't been taking the joint health supplement I used to take every day, so I'm going to make it a focus to take that everyday.

I slept about 10 hours, so a lot more than the night before, and it's funny that I felt more tired despite sleeping more.

Anyways, I started my day right away with meditation which is a good achievement. I had a lot of thoughts in my head upon waking, and a lot of initial thoughts during the meditation, yet I was able to reach a fairly calm and focused state. I did 3 cycles of wim hof today, and I definitely noticed that the 3rd had the strongest effect on me. I meditated in total for over 1 hour, which seems like a lot, but I honestly still feel like I could have reached a higher level of concentration. Perhaps I will do some more later.

I've accumulated a little to-do list of things that would be good to do, so I think today's the day I go ahead and do some of them emoticon
 
Kevin's Existence, modified 1 Day ago.

RE: A Log

Posts: 6 Join Date: 2/20/21 Recent Posts
2/24/21:

I woke up this morning at 9:30AM, about 9 hours of sleep from my estimation. I want to do a better job of checking the clock before I go to sleep lol.

I noticed that my dreams were more vivid than usual last night, and I had some negative things happen in my dreams. Upon waking at 9:30AM, I had a flood of thoughts rush in, and basically sat in my bed half-asleep/stuck in thought for an hour before rising at 10:30AM.

I decided that I'm going to try to read one chapter of MCTB each morning before my meditation. Surely that is a better use of my early morning energy than laying in thought.

I procrastinated my meditation slightly today, it's almost as if my thinking mind knows it's going to be deconstructed, and flails to find random things to focus on and generate "thought-trains". The truth is, no matter how much uncontrollable thought is flowing through my head, I'm able to predictably enter "access concentration" and remove my slavery to thought.

I meditated in total for about 1 hour, doing 2 cycles of wim hof breathing, and followed it with a 20 minute yoga practice. My mind resists the yoga practice as well, thinking of ways to get out of it, of other things I can get lost in. However, I told myself that yoga is not hard, it really is relaxing in many ways, I don't have to think during yoga, and that makes it freeing.

I would like to remember to check the clock before I start meditating so I know more accurately how much time I've spent.

Yesterday, was a good day in which I took on a few challenges that I've been procrastinating for a while. It feels good to be on the other side of things that I'm scared of. I haven't taken much focused action towards my business, which is concerning because I'm in credit card debt, and I've been spending lots of money. I'm still coasting just fine, but it is likely that I will need to make more money in the future, in order to maintain my lifestyle.

I've noticed an increase in clarity of thought since I resumed my concentration meditation practice. Things are simpler.

I think staying focused on this simple mindset will be helpful for me. As for today, I have a zoom call starting soon, and then I hope to progress through a business-oriented video course. I spent a lot of time learning japanese yesterday, it really is a fascinating language, and it's interesting to me the linguistic differences. I'm going to mexico on a vacation soon, so learning spanish is more practical, I may spend some time brushing up on that as well.

Here's to a simple, focused day.
Sam Gentile, modified 1 Day ago.

RE: A Log

Posts: 900 Join Date: 5/4/20 Recent Posts
Hi, welcome to DhO!

I was struck by
The truth is, no matter how much uncontrollable thought is flowing through my head, I'm able to predictably enter "access concentration" and remove my slavery to thought.

That is amazing! I'm focusing a lot on my Concentration too and it just led up to my 2nd A+P. I think it's a powerfull base.,