Something I want to discuss

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Simon T, modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 7:57 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 7:57 AM

Something I want to discuss

Posts: 383 Join Date: 9/13/11 Recent Posts
As a community, we could do better. What I mean is that it doesn't appear we have been so successful at connecting people in a strong and meaningful way. There is probably people that come on this site and are living one block apart and they don't know. Eventually we will have to build something that will help people find each other in the real world, become friends, create strong bonds, exchange on skype. etc. etc.

Many of us, if not most of us here, have to deal with some kind of depressive state beside the fundamental "problem". It's clear that traditional psychology isn't going to help much. Is any "content-based" approach useless? Probably not but we still don't have much dharma-compatible ways of dealing with content, as far as I know.

I'm probably not the only one that feel that the social aspect of the path is the most difficult of all. Anyone agree we need to work on that?
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Richard Zen, modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 8:36 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 8:36 AM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 1652 Join Date: 5/18/10 Recent Posts
It's difficult to say because there's no stopping people from contacting each other or joining a local Sangha. To me this place has replaced a real life Sangha

Why people may not want contact:

-Family and friends don't support meditation
-Some are religious and some are not
-Some are afraid of meeting weirdos (don't underestimate this one)
-Some just want to do it on their own because no one can do it for them
-Some have a local Sangha or online instructor and are satisfied
-Some have little time

I personally would like to meet more people in the pragmatic circle and talk about practice, but in my area (Edmonton Canada) I'm not sure I can find a pragmatic circle. It seems to be Zen vs. Theravada vs. Tibetan style. I might not get better information on practice than what I already got.
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Nikolai , modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 9:45 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 9:45 AM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 1648 Join Date: 1/23/10 Recent Posts
Richard Zen:
It's difficult to say because there's no stopping people from contacting each other or joining a local Sangha. To me this place has replaced a real life Sangha

Why people may not want contact:

-Family and friends don't support meditation
-Some are religious and some are not
-Some are afraid of meeting weirdos (don't underestimate this one)
-Some just want to do it on their own because no one can do it for them
-Some have a local Sangha or online instructor and are satisfied
-Some have little time

I personally would like to meet more people in the pragmatic circle and talk about practice, but in my area (Edmonton Canada) I'm not sure I can find a pragmatic circle. It seems to be Zen vs. Theravada vs. Tibetan style. I might not get better information on practice than what I already got.



Im moving to melbourne australia next month so am open to regular get togethers there.

Nick
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Richard Zen, modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 10:23 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 10:23 AM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 1652 Join Date: 5/18/10 Recent Posts
Nikolai .:
Richard Zen:
It's difficult to say because there's no stopping people from contacting each other or joining a local Sangha. To me this place has replaced a real life Sangha

Why people may not want contact:

-Family and friends don't support meditation
-Some are religious and some are not
-Some are afraid of meeting weirdos (don't underestimate this one)
-Some just want to do it on their own because no one can do it for them
-Some have a local Sangha or online instructor and are satisfied
-Some have little time

I personally would like to meet more people in the pragmatic circle and talk about practice, but in my area (Edmonton Canada) I'm not sure I can find a pragmatic circle. It seems to be Zen vs. Theravada vs. Tibetan style. I might not get better information on practice than what I already got.



Im moving to melbourne australia next month so am open to regular get togethers there.

Nick


You mean by Skype because I'm on the other side of the planet.emoticon
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Simon T, modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 11:36 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 11:26 AM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 383 Join Date: 9/13/11 Recent Posts
Richard Zen:
It's difficult to say because there's no stopping people from contacting each other or joining a local Sangha. To me this place has replaced a real life Sangha

Why people may not want contact:

-Family and friends don't support meditation
-Some are religious and some are not
-Some are afraid of meeting weirdos (don't underestimate this one)
-Some just want to do it on their own because no one can do it for them
-Some have a local Sangha or online instructor and are satisfied
-Some have little time

I personally would like to meet more people in the pragmatic circle and talk about practice, but in my area (Edmonton Canada) I'm not sure I can find a pragmatic circle. It seems to be Zen vs. Theravada vs. Tibetan style. I might not get better information on practice than what I already got.


I think we have some kind of cultural problem. I believe we are underestimating the amount of social programming in us and simply going against it the hard way with techniques and hardcore stuff isn't enough for many of us. I did ride for a while with the "sense of mission" but it get to a point where this has to go too and I'm left with very little sense of direction. Social behavior in modern society have become so much about expressing a self or defending a self. The is the opposite of many Asian societies where feelings would be so much protected.

The kind of culture I would like to see to emerge is one of joyful frankness. To have the best of both worlds. Now, considering how much we have been programmed to interpret critique has some kind of attack, in a world where we voice our opinion because "I think this", where we create a sense of self by those beliefs and opinion, it doesn't always come naturally to interpret the other as benevolent.

And yes, the weirdo factor is a big one, being on both side of it, as political-correctness come into play to give us the worse of both world. Non-weirdos are boring anyway and social convention are hindrance we should all wrong on.
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Richard Zen, modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 12:57 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 12:57 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 1652 Join Date: 5/18/10 Recent Posts
Simon T.:
And yes, the weirdo factor is a big one, being on both side of it, as political-correctness come into play to give us the worse of both world. Non-weirdos are boring anyway and social convention are hindrance we should all wrong on.


My belief is that it will be a small population that will meditate (as has been always the case). Most people can function fine without meditation even if there's much room for improvement and most people I talked to about meditation kept saying the same thing: "It's brainwashing". That's the #1 argument against meditation I got. "Muaahahhahahahahah! BRAINWASHING!" I actually think mindfulness in particular is anti-brainwashing. It doesn't matter. You attack their egos and you'll just get blowback, and they will probably try and test your anger control to prove you wrong. emoticon

Most Dharma is spread by internet and books. People will need to try this stuff out anonymously and see some basic benefits before they join a Sangha. Online Sanghas with Skype and other technology are more likely to be tried because you can aggregate more people from around the world.

The other stumbling block is Dukkha Nanas which will block most people who try meditation. Few will even bother trying to get to equanimity. Then when you add the "it's brainwashing, and it feels bad", you can see how the low turnout manifests.

As you mentioned before there are views. Everyone has views including Buddhists so if people are dogmatic about practice then you lose another bunch of people leaving a small number of pragmatic Buddhists that tolerate the dark night and practice like a hobby. Disagreement is everywhere.

Oh here's a few more stumbling blocks:

-Meditators don't agree on politics and economics so that would have to be ignored. The focus should be meditation.
-Lack of time due to work.
-People moving to get new education or jobs elsewhere.
-People from different religions dabbling in mindfulness but reject Buddhist doctrine.
-Guru mentality (or fake Gurus) and people leaning on that (Bill Hamilton and Daniel Ingram have wrote lots about this).
-People who aren't serious about meditation and just want to vent their concerns and get attention.
-People who enjoy their hobbies and will never take the time to meditate.
-The cost of meditation retreats.
-Different meditation methods working or not working with different people.

I would just focus on networking with people (like on this site or elsewhere) and leave it at that. You can create a Meetup.com group in your area (or join one if it exists) and see who applies. I'm sure it will be a mix of the above list.

The reality is it's better to meet with like minded people about practice who volunteer to meet than worry about how our culture is made up. Culture is actually the most difficult conditioning to change and the only changes I see that happen spontaneously are when people pursue their desires. If people desire a culture change then they will change, even if it comes from desperation.

Finally I would say that we don't often talk enough about the end of a path and the ability to go on your own no matter what people you are near. Work and family forces us to deal with different people and opinions. That last thing we need is making instructors or other advanced practitioners a crutch to lean on.
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Simon T, modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 8:09 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 8:09 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 383 Join Date: 9/13/11 Recent Posts
Richard Zen:
Simon T.:
And yes, the weirdo factor is a big one, being on both side of it, as political-correctness come into play to give us the worse of both world. Non-weirdos are boring anyway and social convention are hindrance we should all wrong on.


My belief is that it will be a small population that will meditate (as has been always the case). Most people can function fine without meditation even if there's much room for improvement and most people I talked to about meditation kept saying the same thing: "It's brainwashing". That's the #1 argument against meditation I got. "Muaahahhahahahahah! BRAINWASHING!" I actually think mindfulness in particular is anti-brainwashing. It doesn't matter. You attack their egos and you'll just get blowback, and they will probably try and test your anger control to prove you wrong. emoticon

Most Dharma is spread by internet and books. People will need to try this stuff out anonymously and see some basic benefits before they join a Sangha. Online Sanghas with Skype and other technology are more likely to be tried because you can aggregate more people from around the world.

The other stumbling block is Dukkha Nanas which will block most people who try meditation. Few will even bother trying to get to equanimity. Then when you add the "it's brainwashing, and it feels bad", you can see how the low turnout manifests.

As you mentioned before there are views. Everyone has views including Buddhists so if people are dogmatic about practice then you lose another bunch of people leaving a small number of pragmatic Buddhists that tolerate the dark night and practice like a hobby. Disagreement is everywhere.

Oh here's a few more stumbling blocks:

-Meditators don't agree on politics and economics so that would have to be ignored. The focus should be meditation.
-Lack of time due to work.
-People moving to get new education or jobs elsewhere.
-People from different religions dabbling in mindfulness but reject Buddhist doctrine.
-Guru mentality (or fake Gurus) and people leaning on that (Bill Hamilton and Daniel Ingram have wrote lots about this).
-People who aren't serious about meditation and just want to vent their concerns and get attention.
-People who enjoy their hobbies and will never take the time to meditate.
-The cost of meditation retreats.
-Different meditation methods working or not working with different people.

I would just focus on networking with people (like on this site or elsewhere) and leave it at that. You can create a Meetup.com group in your area (or join one if it exists) and see who applies. I'm sure it will be a mix of the above list.

The reality is it's better to meet with like minded people about practice who volunteer to meet than worry about how our culture is made up. Culture is actually the most difficult conditioning to change and the only changes I see that happen spontaneously are when people pursue their desires. If people desire a culture change then they will change, even if it comes from desperation.

Finally I would say that we don't often talk enough about the end of a path and the ability to go on your own no matter what people you are near. Work and family forces us to deal with different people and opinions. That last thing we need is making instructors or other advanced practitioners a crutch to lean on.


I see that the "community" part of my post got more attention but at first it wasn't really the point I wanted to make. My point is that content matter. I got on this path when I was at the lowest point of my life and there was indeed a lot to deal with as some much had been accumulated over the years. Finally something that made sense. That is complete by itself and deal with the fundamental attention problem I had all my life. Not only there are plenty of techniques but there is also ways of measuring progress.

I'm immensely grateful for the people that meticulously documented all the stages before me has being able to track my progress and adapt my practice to the stages made a huge difference. Still, I have to admit that the "be your own therapist" mantra (there is a dharma book called like this somewhere) has his limits. Until recently, I considered the path to be my all inclusive solution to all my mental health issues. In a way, it is but in a way, it isn't.

Consider how Kenneth Folks was on anti-depressant until the very end, has he tell in the Buddhist geeks postcast. On one hand we have the stages that color our experience in such a way that it out shadow the details of our life at the moment. On the other hand, the is still such a thing as mood, positive and negative thoughts, optimism, self-worth, confidence. There is still a narrative being told in my head and the traditional dharma approach did very little to give a positive twist to it. I got acceptance. Sure. Like a ton of it. but acceptance alone doesn't cut it. Affects are being seen as they arise and I have become the calmest motherfucker in a 10 km perimeter. To a large extend, emotion isn't something that is subjectively part of my life anymore, outside the peculiar twist of the stage of the moment. To what extend is it a good or a bad thing that I sanitized myself so much in this specific way? Those are the things we are not very good at discussing as we don't have a framework for doing so.

Consider the ongoing debate on affect. I was listening to Kenneth Folk NYC dharma talk when he suggested that some degree of affect is necessary to feel compassion. If we are to have that discussion, we first need a language framework to deal with such things and the one coming from psychology and the one coming from the dharma are very poor at that.

I think it's Nikolai in a podcast that brought the example of the homeless man that we encounter on the street. I just don't see why I should feel any kind of negative emotional response to the guys situation. Quite the opposite. My odds of acting as a compassionate human beings, as opposed to simply feeling like I'm one, are much higher if a form of positive emotion arise from that encounter. I gained a lot of equanimity (as a general term) in the face of such situation. As I will progress, there is more of my stuff that will bubble up that will challenge that, for sure. Still, that's the direction this is taking so far. Is being equanimous truly the good of the practice?

From the initial emotional response to the situation, to the behavioral response, to the feedback emotion from the response, there is a whole world there to be described.

On my first retreat, I was with a Christan friend that just wanted to see what this Buddhsim thing was about. He was working for a Christian mission in Myanmar and basically trying to do the work of God, in his own way. After we when to thanks the abbot before leaving the retreat, he told me how he was repulsed by the guy. And he was right. And this isn't the only Mahasi student that give me the feeling that I don't want turn turn like those guys.

Kenneth get to talk about how the previous generation western Buddhists (read IMS) had the morality question covered. I don't know if he was just trying to be nice because I have a strong feeling that this is absolute bullshit. We have to give this to the Christians. They have a way to talk about morality in a much more mobilizing way. The road to hell is paved with good intention, indeed, but at least it give a sense of direction.

One of the reason that Richard developed AF is that the sense of mission didn't sit well with him. I'm really puzzled by what to do with this sense of mission. I got the feeling that I need to piggyback on this sense of mission for a while but it need to have a positive spine to it. I start to think that to have some kind of grandiose plan would be a good remedy to the mundanities of the layman life. Trungpa Rinpoche put it differently by saying that if you are about to get Enlightened, prepare yourself to become ego-maniac. It feels like if I keep this ego mania on leash, I'm condemned at living this path we some sort of latent depression, a feeling that I'm not living to my full potential. If I leave it wild, I expose my loved ones to sufferings I'm not quite ready mentally to handle, not that I believe it is my duty to protect their feelings. It feels like any kind of compromise is doomed. Either I keep mindfulness as my practice in a social world, which inevitably lead me to a more passive social role, or I rewrite the software to be uncompromising and voice my flawed opinions with all my weight to it.

It's probably a confusing post but those are confusing times for me.
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Richard Zen, modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 9:34 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 9:32 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 1652 Join Date: 5/18/10 Recent Posts
I do agree that compassion is needed though mindfulness has increased it for me and not the opposite. The less irritated I am the more compassion can arise. Certainly the AF practice gave me a taste of no emotions but that was pretty boring and actually felt more repressive than vipassana. To me it sounds like you are looking for a calling or place in the world where you can make a bigger difference. That's good energy and it can be used but be careful when dealing with other people because everyone has their angle that might conflict with your intentions. Also groups and other people fall into the 3 characteristics. I don't think this practice has to make you passive. I certainly am less passive but I'm also using cognitive therapy (testing beliefs behind emotions) which can justify many emotions as long as the rationality makes sense. Once the emotion is seen both as not self and is understood it doesn't seem to be a problem any more.

For me the practice works in that you would prefer the present moment to rumination (including positive rumination which has the same tanha flavour of agitation with the now as dislikes). With relief in that present moment you can take action much easier. Also I don't get the egomaniac comment because when I do strong mindfulness I find the ego doesn't benefit and disappears. I'm sure there are many people who get shitty results in meditation, including monks.

If you don't like the current practice then I would recommend looking into using the desire in cool ways like thinking about what you think you should do and concentrate on the positive details of what you want to do exclusively until the desire naturally makes you act. What makes desire for something increase is the narrow attention to positive details. Everything in reality has some negative but if you focus just on the positive details the addictive part of the brain will want to act. Just focus on core values instead of the usual hindrances and get more done. I found it works well but after doing the meditation practice long enough meditation ends up working even better. Creating a "doer" in your mind, even if it's positive, still creates some resistance or stress that may lock you into old patterns.

There's another way as well. You can use aversion the same way by looking at old habits and actions you've done in the past and ruminate only on the negative until you reject them. emoticon

There was an inspiring quote I got from Bono (I'm one of those weird U2 fans I apologize) and he stated it right:

From the sky down
Quote at 1:20:13. Just replace the word "band" with your old ways you want to change.

If you want to use your energy for bold change it's hard to find another way. Just leap in and reject the crap you want to reject with your aversion and embrace what you want to with your desire. Assuming the beliefs behind what you think is crap or desirable is reasonable which is the trick. emoticon Of course you have to keep doing it. Or you can be mindful until the talking to "yourself" stops and you look at what is your genuine goal (without more mental talk) and the relief of letting go makes it easier to surrender to action.
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Simon T, modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 10:08 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 10:08 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 383 Join Date: 9/13/11 Recent Posts
Richard Zen:
I do agree that compassion is needed though mindfulness has increased it for me and not the opposite. The less irritated I am the more compassion can arise. Certainly the AF practice gave me a taste of no emotions but that was pretty boring and actually felt more repressive than vipassana. To me it sounds like you are looking for a calling or place in the world where you can make a bigger difference. That's good energy and it can be used but be careful when dealing with other people because everyone has their angle that might conflict with your intentions. Also groups and other people fall into the 3 characteristics. I don't think this practice has to make you passive. I certainly am less passive but I'm also using cognitive therapy (testing beliefs behind emotions) which can justify many emotions as long as the rationality makes sense. Once the emotion is seen both as not self and is understood it doesn't seem to be a problem any more.

For me the practice works in that you would prefer the present moment to rumination (including positive rumination which has the same tanha flavour of agitation with the now as dislikes). With relief in that present moment you can take action much easier. Also I don't get the egomaniac comment because when I do strong mindfulness I find the ego doesn't benefit and disappears. I'm sure there are many people who get shitty results in meditation, including monks.

If you don't like the current practice then I would recommend looking into using the desire in cool ways like thinking about what you think you should do and concentrate on the positive details of what you want to do exclusively until the desire naturally makes you act. What makes desire for something increase is the narrow attention to positive details. Everything in reality has some negative but if you focus just on the positive details the addictive part of the brain will want to act. Just focus on core values instead of the usual hindrances and get more done. I found it works well but after doing the meditation practice long enough meditation ends up working even better. Creating a "doer" in your mind, even if it's positive, still creates some resistance or stress that may lock you into old patterns.

There's another way as well. You can use aversion the same way by looking at old habits and actions you've done in the past and ruminate only on the negative until you reject them. emoticon

There was an inspiring quote I got from Bono (I'm one of those weird U2 fans I apologize) and he stated it right:

From the sky down
Quote at 1:20:13. Just replace the word "band" with your old ways you want to change.

If you want to use your energy for bold change it's hard to find another way. Just leap in and reject the crap you want to reject with your aversion and embrace what you want to with your desire. Assuming the beliefs behind what you think is crap or desirable is reasonable which is the trick. emoticon Of course you have to keep doing it. Or you can be mindful until the talking to "yourself" stops and you look at what is your genuine goal (without more mental talk) and the relief of letting go makes it easier to surrender to action.


That's a very good post and I will have to read it a few times as things don't register well in me those days. I'm in the process of making some big decision and it's like passing a kidney stones. I played it safe for the last year and half and it's a bit of a problem with an uncompromising mindfulness approach. Sometimes it also better to just move fast.
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Hermetically Sealed, modified 8 Years ago at 8/19/13 2:00 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/19/13 2:00 AM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 113 Join Date: 6/27/13 Recent Posts
Richard Zen:

-Some are afraid of meeting weirdos (don't underestimate this one)



"Certainly it constitutes bad news if the people who agree with you are buggier than batshit." - Philip K Dick
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Blue , modified 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 11:02 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/21/13 11:02 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 267 Join Date: 7/14/11 Recent Posts
I think the growth of the sassana will become very large (it’s supposed to last another 2,500? ). Like an object a lot force is required for the initial movement and then it grows. I think some real life events are going to catalyze the growth.

With regard to taking action vs passive I am now am much more active/extroverted . However it was very much the opposite during a lot of my career. But I don’t blame myself a bit, and I don’t blame anyone else that tends towards that way at all, I won’t call them weird, ect ect. Holding back is one of the strongest things you can do early on in your practice as so much of the actions you would normally take step from unwholesome volitional roots. Which is why "do nothing" "do nothing" is how you progress quickly down the path.

However now.. it is much different, and more fun, I am now more apart of the human experience. And so many of the actions I take... are completely irrelevant or contentless, meaning saying or doing them was literally only a way to put out the positive energy/volitional roots. The action is literally irrelevent and this sheds a lot of light on how the universe actually works. When people host demonstrations, when people go to funerals, when people give each other high fives these are all ways of just ways of generating volition or delivering volition/merit. This is why such a majority of enlightened peoples actions are positive, because they are litterally working on the energetic level, their mind/body literally deciding yes/no to an action because it is able to peek at the volitional root and positive volitional roots INVARIABLY result in positive outcomes. anyway.. done with my rant lol
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Bruno Loff, modified 8 Years ago at 7/22/13 1:24 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/22/13 1:24 AM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 1094 Join Date: 8/30/09 Recent Posts
Dunno dude, I have met several people from the DhO... that has never really been an issue. It doesn't happen more often, I guess because people here are from all over the world. In fact every occasion I've met people they were either visiting my city or the other way around. There was never any problem, quite on the contrary, enthusiasm on all fronts (well... no sex yet... I should probably shower more often...).

As for dealing with content... well I personally like the way that pragmatical (at least Ingram-style) dharma disassociates itself with content. I feel that the general advice which could have been given against depression, already has been several times on the DhO (eat well, exercise, remember it is temporary and that you'll learn from it, don't make big life decisions, ...). As for specifics, each situation that has "content" is its own thing, and hence only someone who has gone through something similar is likely to have anything remotely relevant to say (and even then cautiously), and I personally would rather not have any life-advice together with my dharma, thank you very much emoticon

By the way I'll be living in Amsterdam until mid-december, anyone interested in meeting up in person and talking about this stuff feel free to message me (bruno d0t loff a@t gmail d0t com).
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Simon T, modified 8 Years ago at 7/22/13 12:06 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 7/22/13 12:06 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 383 Join Date: 9/13/11 Recent Posts
Bruno Loff:
Dunno dude, I have met several people from the DhO... that has never really been an issue. It doesn't happen more often, I guess because people here are from all over the world. In fact every occasion I've met people they were either visiting my city or the other way around. There was never any problem, quite on the contrary, enthusiasm on all fronts (well... no sex yet... I should probably shower more often...).

As for dealing with content... well I personally like the way that pragmatical (at least Ingram-style) dharma disassociates itself with content. I feel that the general advice which could have been given against depression, already has been several times on the DhO (eat well, exercise, remember it is temporary and that you'll learn from it, don't make big life decisions, ...). As for specifics, each situation that has "content" is its own thing, and hence only someone who has gone through something similar is likely to have anything remotely relevant to say (and even then cautiously), and I personally would rather not have any life-advice together with my dharma, thank you very much emoticon

By the way I'll be living in Amsterdam until mid-december, anyone interested in meeting up in person and talking about this stuff feel free to message me (bruno d0t loff a@t gmail d0t com).


Forget the community part, it didn't come out the way I wanted to express it (apart from the private messaging system which is in need to be fixed). Still, I believe there would be a way to work with content in an effective manner, that doesn't add layer of content to patch the one we don't want to deal with, that would help reprogramming huge chunk of our brain in a timely manner. I agree with you, the last think that we want in life advice. On the other hand, having assumptions challenged is always good in the proper social setting and the right attitude.

Maybe the approach would have to b adapted to the stage we are in, each unearthing different kind of content. Consider someone who has PTSD. He has strong memories attached to negative emotions encoded in his brain. Current research suggest that each time we recall something, we re-encode it with the emotion of the moment. So each time we remember something, we don't recall the actual event but the last time we recalled the event. During meditation, each time a stressful thought arises and we face it with the proper relaxation, it get re-encoded with some of that relaxation. For people with PTSD, they are starting again to do research on therapy assisted with substance like MDMA to re-encode those memories in a less stressful manner with great success.

On a side note, one of the reason behind this post is that equanimity is very cognitively impairing for me, and even if the transition from low to high equanimity isn't really awful like it was at the beginning, it still equally imparing. I have the habit of making progress the priority, with the occasional relaxation (fuck it, forgetting practice entirely) at the keys transition points. Doing this while keeping in mind when I will get the most cognitively impared during the day (it usually quite predictable) so I can manage to be productive in-between. I'm thinking of trying to harness the energy of low-equanimity to do so work while holding it there with a speedy mental chatter but there was too much negativity to really do that until recently and the tension of the mini dark night would arise pretty fast. Finally, time on the cushion is pretty much useless for me in the transition from low to high so I cannot count much on this.
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jerry murphy, modified 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 4:52 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 4:52 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 18 Join Date: 3/19/13 Recent Posts
For anyone who is interested Buddhist Geeks are starting an online community where like minded people can meet online mostly using google+ hangouts..got some cool videos as well including Daniel Ingram...who is a member. Its in beta stage you can apply for a 1 month trial membership, just got mine todayemoticon
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Simon T, modified 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 6:14 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 6:14 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 383 Join Date: 9/13/11 Recent Posts
jerry murphy:
For anyone who is interested Buddhist Geeks are starting an online community where like minded people can meet online mostly using google+ hangouts..got some cool videos as well including Daniel Ingram...who is a member. Its in beta stage you can apply for a 1 month trial membership, just got mine todayemoticon


It looks like it's invite only for now... to whom you have to be nice to to get an invite?
C C C, modified 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 9:04 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 9:04 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 946 Join Date: 3/9/10 Recent Posts
Simon, the way I see it: if you're serious about Truth-realization, then you have to accept that you are going to die alone. That's actually the process of enlightenment - to die alone.

Company is nice, friendship is nice, connecting is nice.... nice for the ego. These things give comfort and solidity to the ego. My personal preference is the same as yours, to connect with people and feel good.
Timothy Ingalls, modified 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 9:43 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 9:43 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 7 Join Date: 7/30/13 Recent Posts
Hi Simon,

Thanks for your comments; I am always supportive of building community!
I think one quick way to begin to build community is to get data.
Where do we all live? What connections are there that make sense for travel. I would love to have group sits at my family's ranch house, but does anyone live near Amarillo Texas? No idea. Can you create a google map where we can upload our locations? Or, can you ask us to add to a database and then have that create a map of the locations? I think that's a constructive way to start thinking about making community.

Tim
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Simon T, modified 8 Years ago at 8/7/13 12:45 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/7/13 12:44 AM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 383 Join Date: 9/13/11 Recent Posts
Timothy Ingalls:
Hi Simon,

Thanks for your comments; I am always supportive of building community!
I think one quick way to begin to build community is to get data.
Where do we all live? What connections are there that make sense for travel. I would love to have group sits at my family's ranch house, but does anyone live near Amarillo Texas? No idea. Can you create a google map where we can upload our locations? Or, can you ask us to add to a database and then have that create a map of the locations? I think that's a constructive way to start thinking about making community.

Tim


So much can be done to improve the social aspect of the practice. The dharma will get to be integrated more and more into western societies but I don't expect it to turn into anything near what is or used to be found in Tibet or SE Asia. Enlightenment is a team sport, someone said. Humans are social animals. I did look before at what could be done to help people connect but it would requires considerable amount of work. I also have fantasies of an urban intentional community built around meditation sometimes. A kind of compromise between monastic life and layperson life. Still, the success of a community often depends on the leader of that community, a concept that isn't so compatible with the westerner mindset. On the other hand, a egalitarian model requires great chemistry between the members, something not so easy to maintain.

I realized that I spent most of my life with very anxious people. There is a kind of social reprogramming that I'm trying to do and I believe that interaction with people with some degree of Enlightenment or at least people that don't spill too much of their ego can help at that.

skype: simontanguay at hotmail com
C C C, modified 8 Years ago at 8/7/13 1:23 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/7/13 1:22 AM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 946 Join Date: 3/9/10 Recent Posts
Simon T.:


I realized that I spent most of my life with very anxious people. There is a kind of social reprogramming that I'm trying to do and I believe that interaction with people with some degree of Enlightenment or at least people that don't spill too much of their ego can help at that.

skype: simontanguay at hotmail com


No that's way off.

You need to spend some time with people who have healthy egos. Unfortunately you won't be able to attract people with healthy egos until you yourself have one. Like attracts like, which is why you say you've spent your life hanging around anxious people.

For starters, just stop the tension in the body. Whenever it happens, stop it. See what opens up from there. If you can maintain it at every chance, anxious people will start to drop out of your life and more happy and confident people will start to find you.
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Simon T, modified 8 Years ago at 8/7/13 11:39 AM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/7/13 11:39 AM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 383 Join Date: 9/13/11 Recent Posts
C C C:
Simon T.:


I realized that I spent most of my life with very anxious people. There is a kind of social reprogramming that I'm trying to do and I believe that interaction with people with some degree of Enlightenment or at least people that don't spill too much of their ego can help at that.

skype: simontanguay at hotmail com


No that's way off.

You need to spend some time with people who have healthy egos. Unfortunately you won't be able to attract people with healthy egos until you yourself have one. Like attracts like, which is why you say you've spent your life hanging around anxious people.

For starters, just stop the tension in the body. Whenever it happens, stop it. See what opens up from there. If you can maintain it at every chance, anxious people will start to drop out of your life and more happy and confident people will start to find you.


It was actually a reference to my family. My friends are generally pretty nice people to be around. It just that they aren't on the path. It's to be around people on the path that I miss the most. People that have at least some understanding of the dharma and can re-orient me. There is also a whole discussion about a layperson life that can happens. To spot all the fear/self patterns we have ingrained in ourselves. Also, to break negative thoughts loops and entertain a positive conversation when this is more appropriate. To be reminded of the impermanence of all this and our ultimate faith.
Mario Nistri, modified 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 11:54 PM
Created 8 Years ago at 8/6/13 11:54 PM

RE: Something I want to discuss

Posts: 210 Join Date: 3/3/12 Recent Posts
For the BG community you go to the BGsite, go to community, and then wait to recive the invite.

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