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A stop-gap (old topic) Mark 5/10/19 7:14 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Eric M W 11/30/14 5:23 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Mark 11/30/14 6:53 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Richard Zen 11/30/14 7:09 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Eric M W 11/30/14 7:32 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Richard Zen 11/30/14 5:52 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 11/30/14 5:50 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John P 11/30/14 6:43 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide J J 11/30/14 7:48 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Not Tao 11/30/14 8:19 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Jenny 11/30/14 9:04 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Change A. 11/30/14 9:41 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/8/19 11:57 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Jason Massie 5/8/19 12:44 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/8/19 3:55 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/8/19 2:28 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide curious 5/8/19 7:38 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide curious 5/8/19 4:40 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/8/19 5:15 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/8/19 5:52 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide curious 5/8/19 7:43 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/8/19 7:56 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Jinxed P 5/8/19 8:15 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/8/19 8:39 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Jinxed P 5/8/19 9:37 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/8/19 11:09 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Jinxed P 5/9/19 8:28 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/9/19 11:46 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/9/19 12:31 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/9/19 12:45 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/9/19 12:47 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/9/19 12:56 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/9/19 1:05 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Jinxed P 5/9/19 12:56 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/9/19 1:09 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/9/19 1:15 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/9/19 1:20 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide curious 5/9/19 3:29 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Andromeda 5/10/19 6:19 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/10/19 6:48 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide curious 5/10/19 3:40 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/9/19 4:31 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/10/19 7:38 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 6:27 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 5:15 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/9/19 5:32 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Jinxed P 5/9/19 6:29 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 9:03 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Daniel M. Ingram 5/11/19 2:01 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/11/19 11:10 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/11/19 11:24 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/11/19 12:19 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/11/19 1:07 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/11/19 3:27 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/13/19 3:50 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/11/19 4:10 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/11/19 5:04 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Daniel M. Ingram 5/11/19 12:13 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/11/19 1:10 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/13/19 3:56 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/13/19 5:28 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/13/19 10:31 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/14/19 3:45 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Jinxed P 5/11/19 1:14 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/11/19 1:20 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/13/19 3:46 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/13/19 3:21 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 7:18 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/10/19 4:27 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Milo 5/9/19 1:50 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/9/19 5:40 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/9/19 12:10 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 6:37 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/10/19 4:15 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/10/19 3:10 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Milo 5/9/19 12:23 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 6:13 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 5:11 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 11:12 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/10/19 12:12 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Milo 5/10/19 12:30 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 1:09 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Milo 5/10/19 1:31 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/10/19 2:49 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide curious 5/10/19 3:38 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/10/19 3:59 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Monsoon Frog 5/10/19 4:49 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/13/19 2:11 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/13/19 3:10 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 1:47 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/10/19 1:59 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 2:12 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/10/19 2:31 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/10/19 4:30 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 4:35 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 4:38 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/10/19 5:06 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Milo 5/11/19 4:22 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/11/19 10:38 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Milo 5/11/19 11:45 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/10/19 3:23 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 4:27 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) lotb 5/10/19 4:46 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) John Not2 5/10/19 4:52 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) John Not2 5/10/19 4:56 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) lotb 5/10/19 5:03 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) lotb 5/10/19 5:01 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) John Not2 5/10/19 5:28 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) lotb 5/10/19 5:41 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) terry 5/10/19 5:37 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) lotb 5/10/19 5:49 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) terry 5/13/19 2:39 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/13/19 3:20 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) terry 5/13/19 11:28 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) terry 5/13/19 11:05 PM
RE: A stop-gap (old topic) John Not2 5/10/19 6:04 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/10/19 5:03 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide curious 5/8/19 2:07 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/8/19 3:40 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 4:41 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/8/19 3:50 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 5/8/19 3:53 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 5:18 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 3:48 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/9/19 3:57 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/9/19 4:58 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Andromeda 5/10/19 8:19 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 12:59 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/10/19 1:14 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Milo 5/10/19 2:24 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Chris Marti 5/10/19 2:34 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Milo 5/10/19 3:11 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/10/19 4:04 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide Milo 5/11/19 3:59 AM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 1:57 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 2:32 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide John Not2 5/10/19 3:34 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/10/19 3:53 PM
RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide terry 5/13/19 4:26 PM
A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 7:14 AM
I'm afraid this post is going to be a little morbid. However I would like someone to be candid honest with me and not biased by the nature of the post itself. I apologize for the location of this post. I really couldn't figure out where to post this and Mahasi style Vipsassana seems like a popular route to ultimate insight. I'm a twenty-two year old male living a very decent life. I have many friends, a great job, and I'm in a great school. I'm also probably going to kill myself in the next few years.

This isn't based on depression or some terrible tragedy in my life, although I've had a few of those in my past. My impending suicide is a result of certain realizations. For my entire life I've been trying to find things to make me happy. Now I realize my idea of happiness was just an illusion. There's this fundamental sort of suffering I have identified in my life. Even in throws of ecstasy or euphoria, it's always there. Nagging at me, like a splinter lodged in the back of my mind. I've realized that everything I've wanted, video games, lovers, achievements. They've all been in an attempt try to cover up this fundamental unsatisfactoriness with life.

In fact I think this unsatisfactorinessis an inherent property of achieving sentience/sapience. I think any intelligent agent must have a level of unsatisfactoriness in their existence if they wish to achieve goals. To put it another way. Organisms erect barriers to their environment because they don't want to be consumed by the universe around them. Barriers like skin and bones, and barriers like behaviors to seek food and safety. Suffering is the price of these barriers.

The four noble truths claim that suffering can cease and there is a path to the cessation of suffering. I'm not very entrenched in Buddhist dogma. In fact I don't believe in a God or afterlife at all. I haven't killed myself so far because I've felt guilty about it. But now I don't care anymore. However if there truly is a way to end suffering, which I suspect isn't what enlightenment or nirvana is really about, I would live long enough to see if it exists.

Does the enlightenment gained with insight actually end suffering? Is there away to end suffering? Perhaps with actualism or something to that effect? Or is there no end? Again I apologize if I have disturbed anyone with this post.

Please don't deliver knee-jerk reactions like “There is so much worth living for!”, or “How would your loved ones feel?”, or "You're still just a kid!". If there is no substance in your post, don't bother replying, and I know people will inevitably  tell me I should get on an anti-depressant or talk to a therapist. I've done both, by the way. What I suffer from isn't clinical depression. I know what clinical depression is like. What I suffer from is unsatisfactoriness.

Thank you for your responses.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 5:23 PM as a reply to Mark.
Mark:
I'm afraid this post is going to be a little morbid. However I would like someone to be candid honest with me and not biased by the nature of the post itself. I apologize for the location of this post. I really couldn't figure out where to post this and Mahasi style Vipsassana seems like a popular route to ultimate insight. I'm a twenty-two year old male living a very decent life. I have many friends, a great job, and I'm in a great school. I'm also probably going to kill myself in the next few years.

This isn't based on depression or some terrible tragedy in my life, although I've had a few of those in my past. My impending suicide is a result of certain realizations. For my entire life I've been trying to find things to make me happy. Now I realize my idea of happiness was just an illusion. There's this fundamental sort of suffering I have identified in my life. Even in throws of ecstasy or euphoria, it's always there. Nagging at me, like a splinter lodged in the back of my mind. I've realized that everything I've wanted, video games, lovers, achievements. They've all been in an attempt try to cover up this fundamental unsatisfactoriness with life.

In fact I think this unsatisfactorinessis an inherent property of achieving sentience/sapience. I think any intelligent agent must have a level of unsatisfactoriness in their existence if they wish to achieve goals. To put it another way. Organisms erect barriers to their environment because they don't want to be consumed by the universe around them. Barriers like skin and bones, and barriers like behaviors to seek food and safety. Suffering is the price of these barriers.

The four noble truths claim that suffering can cease and there is a path to the cessation of suffering. I'm not very entrenched in Buddhist dogma. In fact I don't believe in a God or afterlife at all. I haven't killed myself so far because I've felt guilty about it. But now I don't care anymore. However if there truly is a way to end suffering, which I suspect isn't what enlightenment or nirvana is really about, I would live long enough to see if it exists.

Does the enlightenment gained with insight actually end suffering? Is there away to end suffering? Perhaps with actualism or something to that effect? Or is there no end? Again I apologize if I have disturbed anyone with this post.

Please don't deliver knee-jerk reactions like “There is so much worth living for!”, or “How would your loved ones feel?”, or "You're still just a kid!". If there is no substance in your post, don't bother replying, and I know people will inevitably  tell me I should get on an anti-depressant or talk to a therapist. I've done both, by the way. What I suffer from isn't clinical depression. I know what clinical depression is like. What I suffer from is unsatisfactoriness.

Thank you for your responses.

Ahhh, you are a textbook Dark Night Yogi. It really, really sucks, as you know well by now. It's happened to many, many people. You may have crossed the Arising and Passing Away a long time ago and forgotten, and now are dealing with the complex aftermath of the Dark Night. A constant niggling sense of unsatisfactoriness, even in blissful states, is absolutely part of the aftermath.

I heard a podcast by a guy last night who hit the Dark Night on a meditation retreat. He started fasting in an effort to "save" himself and ended up with chunks of flesh missing. His room mates had to take care of him because he was too incapacitated to work. So it really, really does suck. 

Now, you basically have two choices. You can kill yourself, or meditate and be free of suffering. Vipassana really does eliminate suffering, as many who have posted to this message board can attest. Many can also attest that the first experience of Nirvana is amazing. It is like being reborn. The mind stops doing so many useless things. But let's look at your two choices a little more closely...

So, killing yourself. The logic here is that your consciousness is produced by your brain, and that stopping your brain from functioning will lead to cessation. The problem is that there is no guarantee of this. The problem of consciousness is complicated. No one really knows where it comes from, and there are countless reports Near-Death Experiences where people find themselves floating above their physical bodies, able to report what the medical staff said and did while they were "dead." Whether these reports are true or not is not really important. What is important is that you may simply find yourself aware after death, all your mental problems still very much there. A traditional Buddhist would probably agree to this interpretation, and would say that you would experience many rebirths as a result of the act of suicide.

Fortunately, the other option of meditation is a much more reliable form of release from suffering. It works, people who get enlightened know that it works, and it will work for you if you do it. Meditation brings many forms of relief-- blissful concentration states, awesome formless realms, profound Equanimity, I could go on for quite some time. There are also permanent forms of relief that are the stages of enlightenment along with the experiences of Nirvana-- the complete sensation of sensory experience and consciousness. Following this cessation is a deep sense of relief and tranquility.

I am personally not enlightened. I have been bouncing around the Dark Night for two years. But I remember my first taste of Equanimity-- a knot untied in my chest, a fog lifted, and every problem I ever had vanished like a mirage. It really is that simple. And the good news is that I'm not a very skilled meditator. If I can make it to Equanimity, you can certainly attain the first stage of awakening and beyond.

I think you would benefit from a long-term retreat. Set aside your job, daily responsibilities, and all that for a few months and go on retreat. There are many centers in Asia that focus on getting enlightened, someone else can probably fill you in on that. If leaving your life to go on retreat sounds scary, keep in mind that you would leave this all behind anyway if you killed yourself.

My suggestion, again-- read MCTB, get a good home practice going, and then take some time to go on retreat. You can be completely free of suffering and happy in ways that you never dreamed of. It is a more reasonable alternative than killing yourself.

I also suggest you contact a guy named Ron Crouch. He is enlightened, a vipassana instructor, and a professional psychologist. He can help you sort all this out. Check him out here:

https://alohadharma.wordpress.com/

I have been dealing with the same profound sense of constant unsatisfactoriness as you for the past two years, while trying to raise kids and hold down a job. I know how awful it is. Please email me if you need to talk:

ayearhasgone@gmail.com

Best wishes,
Eric

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 5:52 PM as a reply to Mark.
I'm glad you're talking to a therapist. No matter how useless you think they are it's good to have a sounding-board when you have questions.

Whether you have depression or not anyone who thinks that dying is easier than living must be releasing tons of cortisol especially your description of a splinter lodged in the back of your mind. There must be some major ruminating going on that's making you hate life. Rumination in my context is thinking about problems until you feel stuck.

I'll cover some modern psychology that I think helps and then I'll cover what Buddhist meditation can offer.

In Cognitive Behavioural Therapy they zero in on certain negative beliefs:
  • Must vs. Should: "The world should be this way." "I must have this..."
  • Awfulness vs. Bad: Is something truly awful or is it just bad?
  • Life is unbearable: If something is unbearable you would be dead already.
  • Low frustration tolerance: Is life supposed to be easy? Is it supposed to keep you happy all the time?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQqSF8bQckI
REBT

What you would do is challenge the beliefs when the negative feelings arise and replace them with scientific beliefs that allow boredom and disatisfaction to exist because everyone has to deal with it. You say you have a good life but aren't satisfied, then learning about Flow and how increasing your challenges so that they match your skills will create much more happiness. How about taking your good life and devoting it to helping other people (who aren't as successful). Man's search for meaning by Viktor Frankl also counters meaninglessness because there are all kinds of meanings you can create and perceive if you're willing to look and be creative.

If you repeatedly let go, or interrupt the these unrealistic rumination thought-streams and replace them with realistic beliefs there should be some relief and coupled with a meditation practice it can progress even further. 

I found in my experience that vipassana reduces boredom and stress markedly by keeping the amygdala from being too over-active. 

The problem with Buddhism is that people can get lost on the different types of enlightenment and maps. I read recently a book by Rob Burbea called "Seeing that Frees" which covers many of those gaps and I would recommend that on top of other titles for a book filled with awesome practice instructions. I would also recommend Daniel's book which covers noting really well. The noting practice by itself got me to equanimity.

There are other trap doors with noting so I would recommend:

http://www.insightmeditationcenter.org/books-articles/articles/mental-noting/
Gil Fronsdal noting

A good starting practice is concentration practice as a basis for insight. This website has most of what you would need:

http://www.leighb.com/jhanas.htm

It's very important that you read the books above and find out what good practice is because ennui, disatisfaction, and stress are all involved in meditation practice when a person is just starting and learning the ropes. Only when you start getting jhanas and then apply your concentration to insight will the brain start letting go of stress in a really deep way which is mainly letting go of resisting how reality actually is.

Richard

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 5:50 PM as a reply to Mark.
HI Mark,
Does the enlightenment gained with insight actually end suffering? Is there away to end suffering? Perhaps with actualism or something to that effect? Or is there no end? Again I apologize if I have disturbed anyone with this post.
Please don't deliver knee-jerk reactions like “There is so much worth living for!”, or “How would your loved ones feel?”, or "You're still just a kid!". If there is no substance in your post, don't bother replying, and I know people will inevitably  tell me I should get on an anti-depressant or talk to a therapist. I've done both, by the way. What I suffer from isn't clinical depression. I know what clinical depression is like. What I suffer from is unsatisfactoriness.
I can respond that even an entry-level pracitioner can experience relief from dukkha, which "dukkha" I feel you described aptly and simply: a suffusive dissatisfatoriness. 

So as to the entry level bit: I had that initial mental releasing experience, what Theravadin systems of meditation call "Stream-entry", in February of 2012-- 2/7/12, I think. Everyone is said to be capable of that initial release. And even just that this is pretty mind loosening, causes a good deal of letting go/relaxation from trying control things that are silly to try to contol or to want to control.

So I'd say while the terms of life can be a maddening causality-- the equation all that is born dies, all that arises passes, and furthermore in between there is a unrelenting effort to survive and survive without pain, survive with dignity--  "Buddhist science of mind", if you will, does grant freedom. I have also seen completely devout theists have a deep calm with the terms of life ("the human condition", as some call it), so I don't want to confine this freedom to some sort of "Buddhist-only practice prize", because I have seen profound effects in traditions I don't practice which resemble outcomes I've seen in Theravadin practitioner.

But in even the Buddhist stream entry perspective there is seeing causality, how one thing comes from another (including death coming from birth), and there is seeing "What is this? What is life?" There's a peace about how the cosmos and our little lives arise and pass. So I'm ticked that I can't find my wallet, but the terms of being alive and alway in position to die and/or be in discomfort or pain-- what would I get out of controlling something that's going to happen anyway? Why would I kill myself, lacking chronic pain and/or inescapable abuse? That seems silly, excess. Still I did peseverate on this and had such plans before I started to just look at the mind, always knowing it was my sentient right to exit if I wanted.



Anyway, so to be clear, 

here's this fundamental sort of suffering I have identified in my life. Even in throws of ecstasy or euphoria, it's always there. Nagging at me, like a splinter lodged in the back of my mind. I've realized that everything I've wanted, video games, lovers, achievements. They've all been in an attempt try to cover up this fundamental unsatisfactoriness with life.
In fact I think this unsatisfactorinessis an inherent property of achieving sentience/sapience. I think any intelligent agent must have a level of unsatisfactoriness in their existence if they wish to achieve goals. To put it another way. Organisms erect barriers to their environment because they don't want to be consumed by the universe around them. Barriers like skin and bones, and barriers like behaviors to seek food and safety. Suffering is the price of these barriers.
is that you think taking control of ending your life (suicide) could be satisfying or more satisfying than letting life take you naturally? 

But if nothing is really satisfying to you, even controlling your death, what would or does motivate/gratify you to control your ending?

Why would you not just be alive in the the mental stillness, the phyical calm of knowing this-- the terms of life are death, all these lives and forms are coming into and out of being-- and procede in living till living passes on its own? 

Is there anything dissatisfactory knowing this, arising, passing, a loooooong string of causality with things coming and going, giving rise to new things, which in turn give rise to new things and pass and so on? It seems silly and very tiny to end this, though I used to perseverate a bit on suicide at one time and had a tidy-ish plan for it. It just seems bewilderingly surfeit at the moment. But if I were in chronic painful decline I might take assisted self-death as a friend did. I don't know. It seems worthwhile to just see how life does its goofy thing and die along with it.

Good luck, last post for me.


----edit--- what changes after that initial release, the sotapanna event, is that one sees more and more things as they are and behaviour starts to align with that knowledge. So people can get very calm and quiet and still knowing this. So many movements are seen as extraneous and just telegraph some mental provocation that has no basis in light of knowing causality, the great arising and passing continuum. So the mind becomes quieter and calmer, less motion, and action follows the mind. 






RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 6:43 PM as a reply to Mark.
To complement what Eric said:
At times, it may really feel like this suffering/unsatisfactoriness is an inevitable part of life, or even of yourself... but when you start reaching equanimity and/or your concentration in meditation goes up, you start to realize that these depressive feelings are just that: feelings, and that you don't need half of the things you desired, which you though were needed to be happy, and that these desires themselves were a cause of suffering.
Without desires, there is no affliction caused by desiring, and just this is already a relief, like a weight you stopped carrying. Without chasing these desires, you are no longer making your happiness depend on fallible things, on things that can and will go through change and eventually cease.

By the way, you might want to have your health checked too.
I have about your age, and only recently I discovered I have temporomandibular joint disorder related to the growth of my wisdom teeth.
Now I'm getting treatment and this is making quite a difference in the quality of my life.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 6:53 PM as a reply to Eric M W.
Thank you for your responses.

I never thought that I was on the Dark Night, because I still have not reached A/P through insight meditation. However it is something worth considering, perhaps the Dark Night period of vipassana won't be as bad when I reach it, or am I already in it and have nothing to worry about? Will I experience A/P?

I am going to start practicing Samatha every day, I feel like the Jhanas might help me with my mood. I intend to have some personal one to two week retreats at my house, meditating from sunrise to sunset. Although I worry that I will not have the time to really push myself to stream entry, even my daily practice has lapsed. If someone could offer any tips, that would be great.

I thank you for your answers. I'm going to keep trying, at least for a few more years, to see if I can reach strem entry.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 7:09 PM as a reply to Mark.
This is a good jhana book on top of the Leigh Brasington link I gave you:

http://www.amazon.com/Focused-Fearless-Meditators-States-Clarity-ebook/dp/B003XF1LJ8/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1417396059&sr=8-3&keywords=Jhanas
Focused and Fearless - Shaila Catherine

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 7:32 PM as a reply to Mark.
Mark:
Thank you for your responses.

I never thought that I was on the Dark Night, because I still have not reached A/P through insight meditation. However it is something worth considering, perhaps the Dark Night period of vipassana won't be as bad when I reach it, or am I already in it and have nothing to worry about? Will I experience A/P?

I am going to start practicing Samatha every day, I feel like the Jhanas might help me with my mood. I intend to have some personal one to two week retreats at my house, meditating from sunrise to sunset. Although I worry that I will not have the time to really push myself to stream entry, even my daily practice has lapsed. If someone could offer any tips, that would be great.

I thank you for your answers. I'm going to keep trying, at least for a few more years, to see if I can reach strem entry.

Mark, if you are to the point of thinking about suicide, it's time to really go for it. Arrange your affairs and look into retreats. I think MBMC in Penang has gotten good reviews, as has Panditarama. As I said before, you will leave everything behind if you kill yourself. Far better to leave it behind for only a short while and find real happiness in enlightenment. There is no need to "try for a few more years" if you can nail stream-entry in far less than even one year. 

That said, you can certainly do it at home. I have a job and four kids. One of my children has special needs. I made it all the way up to EQ under these circumstances in my home practice. The only reason I didn't go farther was because I became complacent in Equanimity. You can do it! A few years is not necessary, you can finish the process in months or even weeks if your practice is strong.

There was a Buddhist teacher, Dipa Ma, who taught students to become enlightened in the course of their day-to-day lives. She herself had suffered immensely from losing two children and her husband, as well as numerous health problems. Becoming enlightened (well, anagami at least) relieved her of this suffering. You can also be relieved of your suffering. A book about her life that I highly recommend is here:

http://www.amazon.com/Dipa-Ma-Legacy-Buddhist-Master/dp/0974240559/

Let me know if you can't afford it and I will buy you a copy. It includes a few stories of enlightenment by householders. I should note, that Dipa Ma was pretty intense and believed in sleeping only four hours a night. She was a very determined woman, but also a very enlightened one.

As for whether you've crossed the A&P, no one can say for sure. But your frame of mind is pretty much perfectly Dark Night Yogi, and it's not uncommon to cross the A&P in daily life and not remember. Regardless, since your practice has lagged, you will A&P again when you start meditating. I can't say how bad the Dark Night will be, though since you are already suffering quite a bit it can't really get much worse, can it? And the peace of Equanimity is right around the corner once you get that far.

Jhana practice is good. The Buddha recommended metta meditation for aversive types, which you seem to be. When I do metta meditation my mind is much quieter and concentration is stronger. I suggest working with metta at the beginning of your meditation sessions.

Again, email me if you need to talk. There is also a great group of practitioners here who can offer you excellent advice.

Best wishes,
Eric

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 7:48 PM as a reply to Mark.
Hello Mark,

Please take my post with a grain of salt.

The splinter-suffering that you experience is also something I experienced: I called it the dagger, the angst, the knife wound whatever.

It was essentially an omnipresent, always present, piercing pain in the chest that reminded me that I was always a shitty person. This dagger feeling, was somatic, in other words, I literally felt like their was a friction, or angst, or piercing wound in my heart that was synonymous with being itself. It was so painful that I sought relief by all means possible.

Nothing worked, even in sleep I had no relief, no distractions to remove me from the split in my chest, so I buckled down and dived right into it.

I affirmed the struggle, life and everything and did not deny it one bit.

I came out of it alive, and the feeling is gone forever. Since May 15th 2013, I have not experienced that chest pain or angst, ever. It is completely gone forever. Prior to this I removed the feeling of sadness forever, this was about a year prior to that.

I still have many problems, like worrying about the future, lack of motivation in school, angst, anxiety, human problems etc. I want to get laid, that kind of stuff.

But that existential issue reached its culmination and disappeared quite nicely. After the event I was able to rest in a still-point whenever I so desired.

In other words: it's very possible, and very worth it. But don't mess with other parts of your life while you're in it, decisions made around this period of time can be irrational and lead to negative consequences.

So be conscientious, rational and mindful if you do choose to pursue spiritual practice as a means of eliminating this suffering, because it is possible.

Cheers,

James

P.S

I believe that it's entirely possible to end all suffering, the suffering I experienced was very specific.

1) I didn't like it.
2) I investigated what I needed to do to end it.
3) I ended it.

The Buddhists have a saying (that I really fail to remember, so this is an epic paraphrase): "Put the mind on one point, and all can be accomplished."

Concentration in other words, hone your effort, your diligence, develop faith and zeal. Miracles will be worked, we call them iddhi.

So seeing as this is the case, it's highly likely that one can systematically remove all forms of suffering. Even to the point that you will look back and wonder what all the fuss was about.

In other words you'll return to the Garden of Eden, pre-fall, and live life on, forgetting about your past suffering. Which is ideal.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 8:19 PM as a reply to Mark.
Hi Mark,

Something that might be helpful to realize is that, if you really believed life was pointless and nothing mattered, you simply wouldn't have any reason to feel bad.  This unsatisfactory feeling you're talking about must be an unfulfilled hope or wish about what life could be, no?  I am nihilist as well, but I see it as a great comfort.  If life has no meaning, there is nothing you can do wrong.  There is no way to screw up.  There is nowhere you need to go, nothing you need to see, nothing you're missing out on.  This means any tension you're experiencing can just be dropped.  You can let go of trying to make things a certain way.  You can take all of these expectation, wishes, needs, etc. and toss them away.

Just watch yourself - whenever you feel unsatisfied, ask why.  Does that thing really matter if there is no meaning or purpose?  The less meaning life has, the more reason there is to live.  Meaning is about finding fulfillment through actions - putting in time or effort now for a future reward.  The future never comes, though.  Maybe this is what you've realized.  So instead of living life for a purpose which is never fulfilled, you can just live for the sake of living.  If you have food and shelter, all your needs are met, the rest is just wants.  Break them apart, get rid of them, and you'll find meaninglessness - which is perfectly satisfying.

Dissatisfaction, anxiety, anger, sadness - they're all things we do to ourselves to push ourselves towards things we want, and the things we want are programmed into us by our past.  You can systematically dismantle all of that, though.  All that's left when that mental garbage is gone is simply being alive - being right here, right now, with no expectations - which is utterly fantastic.

I won't evangelize my methods at you and muck up your thread, but if you're interested you can check out my recent posts.  I'm not going to tell you there's anything to live for either.  If you are living for something, you aren't living, you're just waiting.  Just live, instead, I say. emoticon

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 9:04 PM as a reply to Mark.
Mark:
Now I realize my idea of happiness was just an illusion. There's this fundamental sort of suffering I have identified in my life. Even in throws of ecstasy or euphoria, it's always there. Nagging at me, like a splinter lodged in the back of my mind. I've realized that everything I've wanted, video games, lovers, achievements. They've all been in an attempt try to cover up this fundamental unsatisfactoriness with life.

What you have stated here, Mark, is actually a profound realization on the path; in fact it is the realization that starts one on the path to the cessation of all-pervasive suffering. It is necessary to have this realization, so congratulations--which I say in all earnestness, without a shred of glibness, for who would be glib over such a serious matter as suicide?

My path began 4 years ago very similarly. I was meditating at first to help with anxiety and phobias; however, the reason I continued to meditate and became a committed Buddhist had to do precisely with the edginess and chronic dissatisfaction with the ultimately hollow pleasures of life. I flitted from hobby to hobby, obsession to obsession, intense achievement to instense achievement, and new friend to new friend--dropping each suddently when it showed itself as unsatisfactory, not the answer but the problem somehow.

I also have a history of severe idiopathic depression, so I know all about suicidal ideation.

Everything Katy says above is flat out true. After almost exactly a year of practicing in accordance with MCTB's maps and models, and Thai Forest meditation techniques, stream entry happened for me on August 8. I may be on the far side of the continuum on this, but I put ridiculously little time into reaching that, all in modest home practice. The maps/models normalized for me what I was going through during the dark times, and I perservered because I know that the stages were normal, and would pass, as all things do. Stream entry was a mind-blowing, life-changing, wondrous event that I highly recommend. It made permanent changes in my functioning, made everything possible plainly miraculous, and lopped off a huge, huge, huge chunk of of my former suffering, particularly anxiety.

So, if you kill yourself, you'll never know this, which is not, from my current perspective, the intelligent choice between options. Death comes free of charge at the end of your life. Why rush it? Why not run the alternative experiment, take up the adventure, even if you have to limp halfway down the path to catch the break that will open up this whole new world of possibility for you. Many people in the past and today are awakening. It is real, it is achievable, and it will make the difference that the wish underlying your suffering is whispering.

Best wishes from one who has been there,

Jenny

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
11/30/14 9:41 PM as a reply to Mark.
Mark:

I think any intelligent agent must have a level of unsatisfactoriness in their existence if they wish to achieve goals.
Let go of all goals and you will let go of unsatisfactoriness in your existence.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 11:57 AM as a reply to Change A..
Change A.:
Mark:

I think any intelligent agent must have a level of unsatisfactoriness in their existence if they wish to achieve goals.
Let go of all goals and you will let go of unsatisfactoriness in your existence.
Sorry to bring back such an old discussion thread, but I too have been deeply troubled by the same questions that OP had raised. I have no goal in life anymore, but I still feel VAST unsatisfactoriness in not only my own existence but also in the existence of all humans and animals. 

What's the point of "life" (or human experience)?  is the meaning of human existence just to end suffering? when we give up all goals (aka attachments, cravings, etc.), are we really "free" from suffering? animals are most likely not having any goals, but we cannot deny that animals do suffer, we humans directly cause immense suffering for animals.

I guess "give up all goals" also means give up "happiness", for happiness and suffering are two sides of the same coin.  so I am supposed to just sit on my cousin and experience my equanimity, nothing to do because there is no self either, how is such life different than committing suicide?   

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 12:44 PM as a reply to John Not2.
I find service work to be a good counterbalance to stuff like this. 
Maybe foster unwanted animals, help homeless, sick or terminal.

The happiness derived from getting some need met is hollow compared to selfless service. Try to find a way of being of service that is a solution vs one that prolongs the problem through dependence. Send metta while serving and investigate the joy you get out of it. 

You could also make a donation to test the waters but  the effects are less dramatic.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 2:07 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Change A.:
Mark:

I think any intelligent agent must have a level of unsatisfactoriness in their existence if they wish to achieve goals.
Let go of all goals and you will let go of unsatisfactoriness in your existence.
Sorry to bring back such an old discussion thread, but I too have been deeply troubled by the same questions that OP had raised. I have no goal in life anymore, but I still feel VAST unsatisfactoriness in not only my own existence but also in the existence of all humans and animals. 

What's the point of "life" (or human experience)?  is the meaning of human existence just to end suffering? when we give up all goals (aka attachments, cravings, etc.), are we really "free" from suffering? animals are most likely not having any goals, but we cannot deny that animals do suffer, we humans directly cause immense suffering for animals.

I guess "give up all goals" also means give up "happiness", for happiness and suffering are two sides of the same coin.  so I am supposed to just sit on my cousin and experience my equanimity, nothing to do because there is no self either, how is such life different than committing suicide?   

John Not2 - another way to look at Mark's comment is to focus on words like 'agent' and 'wish' and 'achieve' and  'goals'.  It is easy to assume that a fulfilling life must strive after change or give up on worthwhile endeavour.  But there is actually another option ... to simply live naturally interacting within the flow of existence, and to let your moral action come from a place of centrelessness and non-agency.  Then you are not striving, but you are still doing good for yourself and others. So you should give up the goal, but not the action.

No need to just sit on the cushion and experience equanimity. This is part of the practice, but not the objective.  The objective is to use the practice to improve ourselves. And then to use the improved self to live a better and happier life. And yes you still exist as a person - adopting nihilism is a misunderstanding. Just look at the strong personalities expressed by many advanced meditators!  So you will rediscover your psycho-physical being and the porous boundries you have the local environment. But you will drop the illusory striving self - that is just a mental tapeworm that  is a byproduct of our clinging and craving. It's a faulty out of control feedback loop.

Pain is physical, and remins, but there is very little suffering. There is happiness, and in fact this becomes the natural resting state. So it is a really good life, very much worth living.  And if you want to find meaning, or God, you are much better equipped to look once you are spiritually liberated. I would suspect most people wouldn't have to look far, and many find that meaning in helping others. 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 3:55 PM as a reply to Jason Massie.
Jason Massie:
I find service work to be a good counterbalance to stuff like this. 
Maybe foster unwanted animals, help homeless, sick or terminal.

The happiness derived from getting some need met is hollow compared to selfless service. Try to find a way of being of service that is a solution vs one that prolongs the problem through dependence. Send metta while serving and investigate the joy you get out of it. 

You could also make a donation to test the waters but  the effects are less dramatic.
Thanks for your advice.  for decades, I had been a devotee to many Hindu gurus and practiced selflessness service, as many had done for thousands of years according to Hindu spiritual traditions, but I have come to the realization that this is not the solution to the human sufferings at all.  Many thousands of years of such service practiced by Hindu (and other) spiritual devotees and it had failed to improve the conditions of human suffering, not at the very least.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 2:28 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Jason Massie:
I find service work to be a good counterbalance to stuff like this. 
Maybe foster unwanted animals, help homeless, sick or terminal.

The happiness derived from getting some need met is hollow compared to selfless service. Try to find a way of being of service that is a solution vs one that prolongs the problem through dependence. Send metta while serving and investigate the joy you get out of it. 

You could also make a donation to test the waters but  the effects are less dramatic.
Thanks for your advice.  for decades, I had been a devotee to many Hindu gurus and practiced selflessness service, as many had done for thousands of years according to Hindu spiritual traditions, but I have come to the realization that this is not the solution to the human sufferings at all.  Many thousands of years of such service practiced by Hindu (and other) spiritual devotees and fad failed to improve the conditions of human suffering, not at the very least.
According to Buddhism, there is no self, only emptiness, the self is an illusion, so is action, since there is no self, there is no improving oneself, so to speak, isn't it?  

I am not trying to make an argument with anyone, but I have found that no one who held the position/belief that living is superior to committing suicide had been able to actually produce any logical reason to support their belief/opinion, all of the reasons I had read in any books, teachings, or here, are illogical, at least that is how I understand it.

That said, I absolutely have no intention to try suicide as a solution to human suffering, I am still looking for answers.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 3:40 PM as a reply to curious.
Give up the goal but not the action - ah! Thankyou!

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 3:50 PM as a reply to John Not2.
I wondered the same thing for many years, but since what I believe was stream entry I can hardly imagine how I could think like that. It is difficult to put an answer into words, though. I don’t know how much of this is only temporary. Maybe you had stream entry long before me?

Suffering hasn’t come to an end for me, but it is worthwhile in a way that it wasn’t before. Existence in itself is beautiful.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 3:53 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Does anyone know what happened to Mark? Only two posts.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 7:38 PM as a reply to John Not2.
(edited for clarity)

John Not2 said ... "According to Buddhism, there is no self, only emptiness, the self is an illusion, so is action, since there is no self, there is no improving oneself, so to speak, isn't it?   I am not trying to make an argument with anyone, but I have found that no one who held the position/belief that living is superior to committing suicide had been able to actually produce any logical reason to support their belief/opinion, all of the reasons I had read in any books, teachings, or here, are illogical, at least that is how I understand it. That said, I absolutely have no intention to try suicide as a solution to human suffering, I am still looking for answers."

Hey John, it's great to chat. I'm happy to offer my perspective, but don't require you to agree!  Anyway, to reply.

"No self only emptiness." Yes form is emptiness. But emptiness is form, form is none other than emptiness, and emptiness is none other than form. emoticon

So there is no self in the sense that there are no rivers, no waterfalls, no waves not storms, even no sun. For a river - is it the same river if all the water is different the following year? Is the bank part of the river? Or a meadow? Or does it depend how wet it is whether the bank is part of the river?  Is the watershed part of the river?  Where it debouches to the sea? The same arguments apply to waterfalls, waves, storms - they are emergent processes in a state of flux, with fuzzy boundaries. 

The sun may not be so obvious, but you can ask the same questions. Is it the hydrogen that makes it up? Or the fusion reaction? Then what if there is no reaction, no fusion, it is still a sun? Is today's reaction the same as yesterdays? Are sloar flares the sun? The solar wind? Does the sun stop at the heliopause? Or does it stop at the heliopause of other stars, where the other stars solar wind beats back the intertellar wind?  Ultimately, 'the sun' is a conceptual label produced by our mind.

Heraclitus wrote that no person steps in the same river twice. And when you think about this, it is kind of obvious that the river is 'fluid' and ever changing. But there is a hidden meaning ... the person is 'fluid' and ever changing too, just like the river! So there is no self, just as there are no objects - there is just flow, or process. The fundamental mistake we make is thinking that this flow is a noun when it is really more like a verb. This mistake dooms us to unsatisfactoriness as long as we maintain it, as we can never posses something that does not exist.

Even though rivers, people, waterfalls, storms, waves and even the sun are just processes we name, they are still beautfiul and somewhat enduring - the process goes on for a while. Ending that process unnecessarily would be like putting a dam over a world heritage river valley, or blowing up the pyramids, or putting a breakwater across a fabulous surf beach. Enjoy it while it lasts!

So just to emphasise - my view is there is no 'noun' self. But there is a 'verb' self, although it has very porous boundaries.

And on logic ... reason is often the slave of the passions. We smuggle the passions into 'logic' when we choose what problems are worth examining, how the problem should be framed, and what evidence we deem acceptable. But worse that that, logic is funamentally dualistic.  That is, it assumes nouns. Don't get me wrong, logic is very useful, but it cannot address non-dual conceptions because it starts by assuming that they don't exist.

So does that mean non-duality is inherently irrational? I don't think so. However, rather than boolean algebra (simple logic) it must require something more like interlocking fields of probabilistic potential for true 'true' logical reasoning. Something like quantum theory, but applied at the macro scale, or a kind of conditional network theory. I don't think we are there yet!

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 4:40 PM as a reply to curious.
Sorry, my post is full of edit errors. Will fix them up later today when I am not travelling. :-( Also, meant to say ‘somewhat enduring’ not ‘enduring’ :-)

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 5:15 PM as a reply to curious.
Thank you for your "reasons", but none of them answered the question: why life and not suicide? why life is "better" than death?

Is that because of the story of the river, the sun, the water, the body, etc. etc., that somehow should make life any "better" than death? why people just say "anything" to defend/support their belief/position without even considering the rationality and validity of their "reasons"?

Preferring life to death is arbitrary and irrational, and yet somehow humans seemed to cling to the groundless belief that living is "right" and committing suicide is "wrong", how bizarre!

Do chickens believe that their meaning of life is to produce eggs and to contribute their flesh for human consumption?  it appears so, isn't it?  That is because chickens are "domesticated",  by humans, to believe in such beliefs.  So it does not sound too far fetched to think that humans too may have been "domesticated" (by who?) to believe that humans shall choose suffering instead of ending their lives voluntarily?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 5:52 PM as a reply to John Not2.
When clarity and concentration increases, the very movement of existance becomes fascinating. When equanimity increases, problems seem less relevant and life in general is an adventure to treasure without clinging to any specifics, because there are always new things to discover in a way that one has never done before, and the stillness inbetween gives rest.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 7:43 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Thank you for your "reasons", but none of them answered the question: why life and not suicide? why life is "better" than death?

Is that because of the story of the river, the sun, the water, the body, etc. etc., that somehow should make life any "better" than death? why people just say "anything" to defend/support their belief/position without even considering the rationality and validity of their "reasons"?

Preferring life to death is arbitrary and irrational, and yet somehow humans seemed to cling to the groundless belief that living is "right" and committing suicide is "wrong", how bizarre!

Do chickens believe that their meaning of life is to produce eggs and to contribute their flesh for human consumption?  it appears so, isn't it?  That is because chickens are "domesticated",  by humans, to believe in such beliefs.  So it does not sound too far fetched to think that humans too may have been "domesticated" (by who?) to believe that humans shall choose suffering instead of ending their lives voluntarily?

Well, I would say that we have been 'domesticated' (in a very bad way) by the grasping self that arises from clinging. Through self-enquiry you can watch it in operation, realise that it is not actually self, not satifactory, but also that it is impermenant and recreated moment to moment.  Get rid of that grasping self that arises from clinging, and you can be free. Free to live. Liberated.

But meanwhile, the sights along the path are great fun, can be almost as good, and relieve a huge amount of the suffering.  

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 7:56 PM as a reply to curious.
curious:
John Not2:
Thank you for your "reasons", but none of them answered the question: why life and not suicide? why life is "better" than death?

Is that because of the story of the river, the sun, the water, the body, etc. etc., that somehow should make life any "better" than death? why people just say "anything" to defend/support their belief/position without even considering the rationality and validity of their "reasons"?

Preferring life to death is arbitrary and irrational, and yet somehow humans seemed to cling to the groundless belief that living is "right" and committing suicide is "wrong", how bizarre!

Do chickens believe that their meaning of life is to produce eggs and to contribute their flesh for human consumption?  it appears so, isn't it?  That is because chickens are "domesticated",  by humans, to believe in such beliefs.  So it does not sound too far fetched to think that humans too may have been "domesticated" (by who?) to believe that humans shall choose suffering instead of ending their lives voluntarily?

Well, I would say that we have been 'domesticated' (in a very bad way) by the grasping self that arises from clinging. Through self-enquiry you can watch it in operation, realise that it is not actually self, not satifactory, but also that it is impermenant and recreated moment to moment.  Get rid of that grasping self that arises from clinging, and you can be free. Free to live. Liberated.

But meanwhile, the sights along the path are great fun, can be almost as good, and relieve a huge amount of the suffering.  
but why condemning suicide? it is just as effective as any meditation/self-inquiry, and it can be quick, painless, accessible here and now, why is it inferior to other liberation approaches?

I am just asking honest questions, don't worry, I am not contemplating suicide, just trying to understand who is benefiting from stopping humans taking their own lives to end suffering. 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 8:15 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Thank you for your "reasons", but none of them answered the question: why life and not suicide? why life is "better" than death?

Is that because of the story of the river, the sun, the water, the body, etc. etc., that somehow should make life any "better" than death? why people just say "anything" to defend/support their belief/position without even considering the rationality and validity of their "reasons"?

Preferring life to death is arbitrary and irrational, and yet somehow humans seemed to cling to the groundless belief that living is "right" and committing suicide is "wrong", how bizarre!

Do chickens believe that their meaning of life is to produce eggs and to contribute their flesh for human consumption?  it appears so, isn't it?  That is because chickens are "domesticated",  by humans, to believe in such beliefs.  So it does not sound too far fetched to think that humans too may have been "domesticated" (by who?) to believe that humans shall choose suffering instead of ending their lives voluntarily?

Life is better than death because there is no happiness in death. Psychological studies have shown that most people are happy. They experience more positive than negative emotions and are more satisfied with their lives than not. 

Now if one's life was nothing but endless pain and torture, than sure, suicide could be a reasonable option. But that's not the case for the vast majority of people. 

Why the obsession with suffering? Being overly sensitive to suffering is a symptom of anxiety and depression.  People without these illnesses aren't so focused on suffering. They spend most of their time thinking about pleasurable things they could be doing, not on how to avoid suffering. 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 8:39 PM as a reply to Jinxed P.
Jinxed P:
John Not2:
Thank you for your "reasons", but none of them answered the question: why life and not suicide? why life is "better" than death?

Is that because of the story of the river, the sun, the water, the body, etc. etc., that somehow should make life any "better" than death? why people just say "anything" to defend/support their belief/position without even considering the rationality and validity of their "reasons"?

Preferring life to death is arbitrary and irrational, and yet somehow humans seemed to cling to the groundless belief that living is "right" and committing suicide is "wrong", how bizarre!

Do chickens believe that their meaning of life is to produce eggs and to contribute their flesh for human consumption?  it appears so, isn't it?  That is because chickens are "domesticated",  by humans, to believe in such beliefs.  So it does not sound too far fetched to think that humans too may have been "domesticated" (by who?) to believe that humans shall choose suffering instead of ending their lives voluntarily?

Life is better than death because there is no happiness in death. Psychological studies have shown that most people are happy. They experience more positive than negative emotions and are more satisfied with their lives than not. 

Now if one's life was nothing but endless pain and torture, than sure, suicide could be a reasonable option. But that's not the case for the vast majority of people. 

Why the obsession with suffering? Being overly sensitive to suffering is a symptom of anxiety and depression.  People without these illnesses aren't so focused on suffering. They spend most of their time thinking about pleasurable things they could be doing, not on how to avoid suffering. 

Even Buddha, as a prince, recognized that life is suffering, which was his reason to seek solutions.  The 4 noble truths stated clearly that Life is suffering.  The "pleasurable things" will not bring happiness to life, but suffering, for both "pleasures" and "things" are impermanent and should be abandoned/detached, otherwise one must suffer.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 9:37 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John,

The translation of Dukkha to unhappiness is not exact. It's more like unsatisfactory. I just read parts of a book by a Buddhist scholar named Coleman (the book was a scholarly work on the subject of Nirvana) and specifically said in it that the translation that "Life is suffering" is inaccurate and only true of the depressed and people in chronic pain. 

But even so, who cares what the Buddha said, what matters is what is empirically verified by science. And scientific studies on human well-being show that most people are happy, and that most people experience more positive than negative emotions. If this is not the case with you, than something is wrong with you, not with humanity. 

Evolution has given us a pretty good reason to be happy. Happy people are more fun to be around. They are more likely to make friends and happiness is more attractive to potential mates, meaning happy people are more likely to have social support and more likely to pass on their genes.

The natural, baseline state of human beings is more happiness than suffering. 

This is the good news. 

The better news is that if you are one of those people who doesn't seem to be naturally happy, you can improve it. 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/8/19 11:09 PM as a reply to Jinxed P.
Jinxed P:


And scientific studies on human well-being show that most people are happy, and that most people experience more positive than negative emotions. If this is not the case with you, than something is wrong with you, not with humanity. 

Evolution has given us a pretty good reason to be happy. Happy people are more fun to be around. They are more likely to make friends and happiness is more attractive to potential mates, meaning happy people are more likely to have social support and more likely to pass on their genes.

The natural, baseline state of human beings is more happiness than suffering. 

 


In an earlier post today I have commented on animal domestication and human domestication, and questioned: "who is benefiting from the human domestication?" Your thinking is the typical "domesticated humanity" brain-wash, they are programmed beliefs (i.e. domestication), not different than that of domesticated chickens that believe in animal domestication and happily be food for humans without awareness of domestication and without resistance. I really feel sorry for all the domesticated sheeples on the planet, not that I am any better than any fellow humans, but I can see clearly how humans are domesticated just like domesticated animals, and I really hope that more people would wake up to this reality sooner than later.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 1:50 AM as a reply to John Not2.
John,

Living is dukkha (Not as we would like), but it's a base from which we can effectively approach non-duality, a state we can verify for ourselves is not dukkha. It's easier to do that than to try and sort out the consequences of suicide. Not that you can't try. In fact, if you can achieve deep meditational states, I'd encourage you to use them for this. To poorly crib a line from The Matrix, are you sure that's (Only) your brain that's experiencing?

...And of course this also completely neglects any compassion you may have for other beings. I think we can all agree that suicide rarely has positive effects for the humans around you, at least.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 5:40 AM as a reply to Milo.
Milo:
John,

Living is dukkha (Not as we would like), but it's a base from which we can effectively approach non-duality, a state we can verify for ourselves is not dukkha. It's easier to do that than to try and sort out the consequences of suicide. Not that you can't try. In fact, if you can achieve deep meditational states, I'd encourage you to use them for this. To poorly crib a line from The Matrix, are you sure that's (Only) your brain that's experiencing?

...And of course this also completely neglects any compassion you may have for other beings. I think we can all agree that suicide rarely has positive effects for the humans around you, at least.
I am not advocating suicide, nor am I interested in practicing it, I just found it very odd that why humans have such a strong negative belief against suicide?  but I think I know the reason now: humans are brainwashed and mind-controlled just like domesticated animals.  Using your own analogy, they are living in the matrix.  

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 8:28 AM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Jinxed P:


And scientific studies on human well-being show that most people are happy, and that most people experience more positive than negative emotions. If this is not the case with you, than something is wrong with you, not with humanity. 

Evolution has given us a pretty good reason to be happy. Happy people are more fun to be around. They are more likely to make friends and happiness is more attractive to potential mates, meaning happy people are more likely to have social support and more likely to pass on their genes.

The natural, baseline state of human beings is more happiness than suffering. 

 


In an earlier post today I have commented on animal domestication and human domestication, and questioned: "who is benefiting from the human domestication?" Your thinking is the typical "domesticated humanity" brain-wash, they are programmed beliefs (i.e. domestication), not different than that of domesticated chickens that believe in animal domestication and happily be food for humans without awareness of domestication and without resistance. I really feel sorry for all the domesticated sheeples on the planet, not that I am any better than any fellow humans, but I can see clearly how humans are domesticated just like domesticated animals, and I really hope that more people would wake up to this reality sooner than later.

1.Do you believe a wild chimpanzee is domesticated?   (by definition the answer is no)
2.Does a wild chimpanzee suffer? 
3.Is the life of a wild chimpanzee, who is happy most of the time,  worth living?

4. Would you consider a human, living 30,000 years ago as a hunter-gatherer, domesticated?
5. Does a hunter-gatherer human suffer?
6. Is the life of a  hunter-gatherer human who is happy most of the time, worth living?

7. Is a dog's life, a happy pup who spends most of his life wagging his tail,  worth living even though it is domesticated?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 11:46 AM as a reply to Jinxed P.
1.Do you believe a wild chimpanzee is domesticated?   (by definition the answer is no)

- it appears that the answer is no, but we don't really know, anything is possible.

2.Does a wild chimpanzee suffer? 

- yes, but of a different nature than human suffering

3.Is the life of a wild chimpanzee, who is happy most of the time,  worth living?

- absolutely!

4. Would you consider a human, living 30,000 years ago as a hunter-gatherer, domesticated?

- that's a domesticated belief, a story; you see, you have been domesticated to believe in such belief without even the capacity to question if such belief may be false, this is the same as your belief of suicide being "bad" or "wrong"

5. Does a hunter-gatherer human suffer?

- again, that's a domesticated belief, what if humans were never hunter-gatherers but were created in glass tubes by other higher intelligence forces/energies? (just trying to open your mind, don't take it seriously)

6. Is the life of a  hunter-gatherer human who is happy most of the time, worth living?

- see above, this is a wrong question based on domesticated beliefs, but assume that he story is real, the answer is an absolutely yes.  your life as a domesticated human animal is no different than the lives of domesticated chickens, can't you see that?  I guess no.

7. Is a dog's life, a happy pup who spends most of his life wagging his tail,  worth living even though it is domesticated?

- very sad to see that you ask such question, the answer is: you are that domesticated poppy! and you have been domesticated to believe that you are happy and that your life is worth living, you have absolutely no awareness that you have been completely domesticated, and you are not alone, the entire humanity is in your good company, truly heart-breaking!  sad sad sad!

Wake up, humanity!

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 12:10 PM as a reply to John Not2.
I am negative about suicide because I have experienced the shock following my father’s suicide. I think he honestly believed that we would be better off without him, but we weren’t. It is violent and sudden and it traumatizes people in one’s surroundings. I don’t blame my dad for taking his life. He didn’t see the alternatives. I wish he would have at least tried to move into a little cottage in the woods and in silence as he always dreamt of. He never saw that as a realistic possibility, and so he kept striving in the sort of life that never suited him. I promised myself that if I were ever to seriously consider suicide, I would first let go of all the things that didn’t make me happy. So what if the dream doesn’t work out? Death always remains as an option. It’s never too late for that. That’s the one thing that nobody misses out on.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 12:23 PM as a reply to John Not2.
Ok. At a more basic level, humans have a tendency to cling to eternalism, and then swing straight into nihilism when eternalism gets shaky (Hence the whole dark night deal). It upsets us when people die, get old, get sick because it threatens our clinging to eternalism. We also incoporate others into our own identities so it hurts us when their state changes as well. When we and they can't live forever in our current state and not change, we then do our best to put death, sickness, aging into contexts we can try to contain into expected patterns through rituals and stories. Suicide completely breaks these temporary coping mechanisms for our addiction to eternalism and is pretty rough on others that have incorporated us in their identities. It also tilts/plants karmic seeds/however you want to view cause and effect strongly toward seeking relief in an eternalism within nihilism which is equally untenable. Even nothingness is a phenomenon and subject to change.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 12:31 PM as a reply to John Not2.
You remind me of someone, by the way. If by any chance you are that someone, I’m glad to see that you are still alive and active. That sounds like a really weird and selfish thing to say to someone who writes about the utter meaningless of life, though. I realize that. Whether or not you are that someone, I wish you the best. May you be free from suffering and the causes of suffering. May you embrace happiness and the causes of happiness. May life be good to you from now on.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 12:45 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
You remind me of someone, by the way. If by any chance you are that someone, I’m glad to see that you are still alive and active. That sounds like a really weird and selfish thing to say to someone who writes about the utter meaningless of life, though. I realize that. Whether or not you are that someone, I wish you the best. May you be free from suffering and the causes of suffering. May you embrace happiness and the causes of happiness. May life be good to you from now on.

I am both "no one" and "not 2", hehe!

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 12:47 PM as a reply to John Not2.
Yup. That’s a clever word play.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 12:56 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
......
So  there are two possibilities going on here:

1. Everyone is absolutely miserable and constantly suffering, but they are a bunch of sheeple, who have been domesticated to think they are suffering all the time. Only John sees this, the one person who with his brilliance, has discerned the truth about life. He is miserable  too, but at least he knows that he is miserable, while every one else is deluded into thinking they are not miserable to the point where life is actually worth living.

Or..  

2. The majority of people are actually happy, while a small segment of the population suffers from mental illness such as anxiety and depression. People who have this mental illness - depression - are constantly suffering and miserable. John has this mental illness, and so is constantly suffering and miserable. 
", and you are not alone, the entire humanity is in your good company, truly heart-breaking!  sad sad sad!

Wake up, humanity!"


The most tell-tale sign of mental illness is believing that you are the only one who is sane, while everyone else is crazy.  I'm going with 2.

And this is a good thing for you. Because there is hope you can defeat this disease.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 12:56 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
Yup. That’s a clever word play.
Actually, not really a wordplay.  Advaita literally translates to "not two", and I like "not2" better than "Advaita", which sounded religious to some people, also not many people actually know the meaning of the word Advaita.  Advaita Vedanta is a profound spiritual teaching that enables people to wake up from the duality.  Buddhist meditation is not the only path to awakening.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 1:05 PM as a reply to John Not2.
I was thinking of nondualism.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 1:09 PM as a reply to Jinxed P.
Jinxed P:
John Not2:
......
So  there are two possibilities going on here:

1. Everyone is absolutely miserable and constantly suffering, but they are a bunch of sheeple, who have been domesticated to think they are suffering all the time. Only John sees this, the one person who with his brilliance, has discerned the truth about life. He is miserable  too, but at least he knows that he is miserable, while every one else is deluded into thinking they are not miserable to the point where life is actually worth living.

Or..  

2. The majority of people are actually happy, while a small segment of the population suffers from mental illness such as anxiety and depression. People who have this mental illness - depression - are constantly suffering and miserable. John has this mental illness, and so is constantly suffering and miserable. 
", and you are not alone, the entire humanity is in your good company, truly heart-breaking!  sad sad sad!

Wake up, humanity!"


The most tell-tale sign of mental illness is believing that you are the only one who is sane, while everyone else is crazy.  I'm going with 2.

And this is a good thing for you. Because there is hope you can defeat this disease.

FYI: mental illness, anxiety, and depression, these are all your domesticated beliefs.  You have been domesticated to the point that you are no different than a domesticated puppy or domesticated chicken, and you believe that you are happy and healthy, and those who are not domesticated must all have been suffering from mental illness, anxiety, and depression.  

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 1:15 PM as a reply to Jinxed P.
Isn't that cute: a domesticated chicken that believes if one is not a domesticated chicken, one must be mentally ill. 

ROFLOL!!!

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 1:20 PM as a reply to John Not2.
Isn't that cute: a domesticated chicken that believes if one is not a domesticated chicken, one must be mentally ill.  

Why are you using a term (domestication) that has such a negative connotation for most people? What's the underlying issue? Maybe we can focus on that for a while?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 3:29 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Moderators - are you able to edit the title of the post to just 'A stop gap ...' so that we don't have the rest plastered on top of the DhO discussion threads all the time? 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 3:48 PM as a reply to Mark.
Mark:
I'm afraid this post is going to be a little morbid. However I would like someone to be candid honest with me and not biased by the nature of the post itself. I apologize for the location of this post. I really couldn't figure out where to post this and Mahasi style Vipsassana seems like a popular route to ultimate insight. I'm a twenty-two year old male living a very decent life. I have many friends, a great job, and I'm in a great school. I'm also probably going to kill myself in the next few years.

This isn't based on depression or some terrible tragedy in my life, although I've had a few of those in my past. My impending suicide is a result of certain realizations. For my entire life I've been trying to find things to make me happy. Now I realize my idea of happiness was just an illusion. There's this fundamental sort of suffering I have identified in my life. Even in throws of ecstasy or euphoria, it's always there. Nagging at me, like a splinter lodged in the back of my mind. I've realized that everything I've wanted, video games, lovers, achievements. They've all been in an attempt try to cover up this fundamental unsatisfactoriness with life.

In fact I think this unsatisfactorinessis an inherent property of achieving sentience/sapience. I think any intelligent agent must have a level of unsatisfactoriness in their existence if they wish to achieve goals. To put it another way. Organisms erect barriers to their environment because they don't want to be consumed by the universe around them. Barriers like skin and bones, and barriers like behaviors to seek food and safety. Suffering is the price of these barriers.

The four noble truths claim that suffering can cease and there is a path to the cessation of suffering. I'm not very entrenched in Buddhist dogma. In fact I don't believe in a God or afterlife at all. I haven't killed myself so far because I've felt guilty about it. But now I don't care anymore. However if there truly is a way to end suffering, which I suspect isn't what enlightenment or nirvana is really about, I would live long enough to see if it exists.

Does the enlightenment gained with insight actually end suffering? Is there away to end suffering? Perhaps with actualism or something to that effect? Or is there no end? Again I apologize if I have disturbed anyone with this post.

Please don't deliver knee-jerk reactions like “There is so much worth living for!”, or “How would your loved ones feel?”, or "You're still just a kid!". If there is no substance in your post, don't bother replying, and I know people will inevitably  tell me I should get on an anti-depressant or talk to a therapist. I've done both, by the way. What I suffer from isn't clinical depression. I know what clinical depression is like. What I suffer from is unsatisfactoriness.

Thank you for your responses.

aloha mark,

   Wow! Great letter. You have gone as far as intellect can take you, and divined the true nature of things.

   You say:

"Organisms erect barriers to their environment because they don't want to be consumed by the universe around them. Barriers like skin and bones, and barriers like behaviors to seek food and safety. Suffering is the price of these barriers."

   Don't want to pay the price? Don't erect barriers. Failing that, tear down the walls.

   Being as you are describing the existential predicament, there is no escape. Even suicide won't extinguish suffering. And, besides, if you are paying the price already, why not get something for it, instead of fighting it?

   I expect you would like someone here to tell you, "Yes, I have ended suffering on the personal level and you can do so as well by following this map...". But what you think is being sought - permanent personal bliss - is non-existent, as the ego itself is non-existent. You cling to the (mode of) being which has barriers, the being who sets goals and suffers when they are not achieved and suffers when these goals are threatened, which is always, given the fact of impermanence. 

   What you seek is transcendence. A worthy goal, one might think, but the setting of goals and being attached to progress just creates more suffering.

   What you could be seeking is realization. What the buddha called "this whole mass of suffering" can be seen through at once, but it is not completely dismantled in an instant of insight. It takes practice, practice, practice.

   The sequence involves first realizing that suffering is systemic and inherent in everything the ego conceives, speaks and acts. You have that part. The next phase, as you have intuited, is "suicide." A symbolic suicide, a killing of everything in yourself that is not already perfect and complete. This death of ego involves the insight that all of life, all of the universe and beyond is one, unitary, complete and perfect.

   So, your "problem," as it were, is to gain the attention of god. It is not enough to love god - which you don't - god needs to love you as well. To that end, you need to be a better person, someone who loves and cares for others, and not for self.

   Buddhism wouldn't tell you this, there is no divinity in buddhism, there is only self and self-transcendence. There is no "god" that may be discerned by the intellect. What we have are the qualities of god, such as the brahmaviharas; as blake says, "mercy, pity, peace and love." Adopt those qualities and your being is slowly transformed into the divine. As attachments drop away, life will seem much more beautiful and interesting. Love blossoms and flows.

   Intellect leads only to the dry desert of nothing Real. Love leads to paradise and the waters of life, and one becomes "like a tree planted by the rivers of water, which bringeth forth fruit in due season." ("We'll be forever loving jah.")

   Intellect has taken you to the point where your only reasonable option is suicide. So why continue to cling to your ego? Why not throw away self interest and live for love, since your life is worthless anyay? Why not give it to god? It turns out your life is god's already. On loan, as it were.

   You can do this through insight, if you are blessed and god loves you, or you can do this through faith, like a normal person. The prophet, upon whom be peace, suggested that we enter the house through the door.

   You are very close, brother. I hope you don't lose the clear insight you currently have into the dissatisfactoriness of egoic life. Now realize that the ego is only conditioning that you are perfectly free to dispense with anytime you decide you really want to wake up. Since if you are at all normal you don't really want to wake up, but intend to cling tightly to your suffering as being familiar and comfortable and helpful in "fitting in,"try at least to recognize that you are clinging and creating your own suffering out of obstinacy and habit. Then you can chip away at it and slow progress won't dwindle to nothing.

   The less attached, the more free. Be like god, in the world and not of it. God is the light, in which all being is seen; it shines on us and makes us real, and visible to each other. When you are the light - which you are already beond a doubt, you just don't realize it - you will be free to suffer or not as you please, or as it pleaes god, which is one thing.

   It is not about understanding, bra. There is a leap of faith, or a gift from the source. A transforming insight of love that changes your focus from ego to Ego, from one to One. The Knower looks at you out of every eye; when you are the Knower you will know. All being is Being; all created things dissolve into the creator, who is All.

   Your mind is the mirror of reality. All of reality, every bit, the whole enchilada, is your Mind. Your mind is informed by words, through words you know what is real. Everything cognizable has a name. The most beautiful names are god's. Light, truth, beauty...each of these names opens the universe in all its glory. Divinity pours from every pore. Stop being obsessed with petty obstructions and realize the only obstructions worth noticing are those which prevent you from realizing your divinity. Arealization which is had by nobody because you must be nobody to have it.

   This is the essential paradox: what you are seeking can only be had when the desirer and haver have completely dissipated. The cosmic enjoyer will have bliss, not you; you will disappear. The prophet, pbuh, said "die before you die." When the ego is gone, only love remains. It is through death that the ego becomes free, becomes what it always was, non-existent. There is only god: that is realization.

  You might ask, how about you, are you free from suffering? I have compassion for suffering, so it is a familiar companion, all my friends have it. I don't think animals suffer as we do. Oh they feel pain quite as much, but the ache in the soul of separation is peculiarly human. The blessing is that, rare as it might be, we humans have the capacity for realization, for nirvana. It is for this chance that we suffer. Worth every penny, my friend, so have faith. But don't let faith save your ego from destruction; it still must die.

   On the path many of us get "glimpses" of the truth, often only once but sometimes more often. One glimpse and you never forget that the fact of bliss is real and infinitely beyond anything the material world or intellectual striving can possible offer. You can seek this experience and/or have faith in it from its many witnesses.

   Good luck, and thanks for the entertaining and insightful message. I hope your impending suicide goes well.


terry




from the rubaiyat of omar khayyam, trans fitzgerald



42.

Waste not your Hour, nor in the vain pursuit
Of This and That endeavor and dispute;
Better be merry with the fruitful Grape
Than sadden after none, or bitter, fruit.


43.

You know, my Friends, with what a brave Carouse
I made a Second Marriage in my house;
Divorced old barren Reason from my Bed,
And took the Daughter of the Vine to Spouse.


44.

And lately, by the Tavern Door agape,
Came stealing through the Dusk an Angel Shape
Bearing a Vessel on his Shoulder; and
He bid me taste of it; and ’twas — the Grape!


45.

The Grape that can with Logic absolute
The Two-and-Seventy jarring Sects confute:
The subtle Alchemest that in a Trice
Life’s leaden Metal into Gold transmute.



46.

Why, be this Juice the growth of God, who dare
Blaspheme the twisted tendril as Snare?
A Blessing, we should use it, should we not?
And if a Curse — why, then, Who set it there?



47.

But leave the Wise to wrangle, and with me
The Quarrel of the Universe let be:
And, in some corner of the Hubbub couch’d,
Make Game of that which makes as much of Thee.



48.

For in and out, above, about, below,
’Tis nothing but a Magic Shadow-show,
Play’d in a Box whose Candle is the Sun,
Round which we Phantom Figures come and go.



49.

Strange, is it not? that of the myriads who
Before us pass’d the door of Darkness through
Not one returns to tell us of the Road,
Which to discover we must travel too.



50.

The Revelations of Devout and Learn’d
Who rose before us, and as Prophets burn’d,
Are all but Stories, which, awoke from Sleep,
They told their fellows, and to Sleep return’d.



51.

Why, if the Soul can fling the Dust aside,
And naked on the Air of Heaven ride,
Is’t not a shame — Is’t not a shame for him
So long in this Clay suburb to abide?



52.

But that is but a Tent wherein may rest
A Sultan to the realm of Death addrest;
The Sultan rises, and the dark Ferrash
Strikes, and prepares it for another guest.



53.

I sent my Soul through the Invisible,
Some letter of that After-life to spell:
And after many days my Soul return’d
And said, “Behold, Myself am Heav’n and Hell.”



54.

Heav’n but the Vision of fulfill’d Desire,
And Hell the Shadow of a Soul on fire,
Cast on the Darkness into which Ourselves,
So late emerg’d from, shall so soon expire.



55.

While the Rose blows along the River Brink,
With old Khayyam and ruby vintage drink:
And when the Angel with his darker Draught
Draws up to Thee — take that, and do not shrink.



56.

And fear not lest Existence closing your
Account, should lose, or know the type no more;
The Eternal Saki from the Bowl has pour’d
Millions of Bubbls like us, and will pour.



57.

When You and I behind the Veil are past,
Oh but the long long while the World shall last,
Which of our Coming and Departure heeds
As much as Ocean of a pebble-cast.



58.

’Tis all a Chequer-board of Nights and Days
Where Destiny with Men for Pieces plays:
Hither and thither moves, and mates, and slays,
And one by one back in the Closet lays.



59.

The Ball no Question makes of Ayes and Noes,
But Right or Left, as strikes the Player goes;
And he that toss’d Thee down into the Field,
He knows about it all — He knows — HE knows!



60.

The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.



61.

For let Philosopher and Doctor preach
Of what they will, and what they will not — each
Is but one Link in an eternal Chain
That none can slip, nor break, nor over-reach.



62.

And that inverted Bowl we call The Sky,
Whereunder crawling coop’t we live and die,
Lift not thy hands to it for help — for It
Rolls impotently on as Thou or I.



63.

With Earth’s first Clay They did the Last Man knead,
And then of the Last Harvest sow’d the Seed:
Yea, the first Morning of Creation wrote
What the Last Dawn of Reckoning shall read.



64.

Yesterday This Day’s Madness did prepare;
To-morrow’s Silence, Triumph, or Despair:
Drink! for you know not whence you came, nor why:
Drink! for you know not why you go, nor where.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 3:57 PM as a reply to terry.
We'll Be Forever Loving Jah
(bob marley)

Yeah-yeah-yeah, yeah-yeah, yeah-yeah-yeah-yeah
Oh (we'll be forever loving Jah)
(We'll be forever loving Jah)
Some, they say, see them
Walking up the street
They say we're going wrong
To all the people we meet
But-a we won't worry
We won't shed no tears
We found a way
To cast away the fears, forever, yeah
we'll be forever
(We'll be forever loving Jah) forever, yes
And forever (we'll be forever loving Jah) there'll be no end
So, old man river
Don't cry for me
I've got a running stream
Of love, you see
So, no matter what stages
Oh stages, stages, stages they put us through
We'll never be blue
No matter what rages
Oh rages, changes, rages they put us through
We'll never be blue
We'll be forever, yeah
we'll be forever
(We'll be forever loving Jah) forever, and ever
Yes, and forever (we'll be forever loving Jah) 'cause there is no end
'Cause only a fool 
Lean upon, lean upon his own misunderstanding, oh, yeah
And then what has been hidden
From the wise and the prudent, been revealed to the babe and the suckling
In everything, in every day, I say, yeah
we'll be forever
(We'll be forever loving Jah)
'Cause just like a tree
Planted, planted by the rivers of water
That bringeth forth fruits
Bringeth forth fruits in due season
Everything in life got its purpose
Find its reason
In every season, forever, yeah
we'll be forever
(We'll be forever loving Jah) on and on and on
(We'll be forever loving Jah) we'll be forever, yes, yes, we'll be forever
(We'll be forever loving Jah)

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 4:31 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
Isn't that cute: a domesticated chicken that believes if one is not a domesticated chicken, one must be mentally ill.  

Why are you using a term (domestication) that has such a negative connotation for most people? What's the underlying issue? Maybe we can focus on that for a while?

I hope this is not another Scientism brainwashed shrink who is going to give another lecture of "if you don't believe in our cult, then you must be mentally ill, suffering from anxiety and depression".  

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 4:41 PM as a reply to curious.
curious:
John Not2:
Change A.:
Mark:

I think any intelligent agent must have a level of unsatisfactoriness in their existence if they wish to achieve goals.
Let go of all goals and you will let go of unsatisfactoriness in your existence.
Sorry to bring back such an old discussion thread, but I too have been deeply troubled by the same questions that OP had raised. I have no goal in life anymore, but I still feel VAST unsatisfactoriness in not only my own existence but also in the existence of all humans and animals. 

What's the point of "life" (or human experience)?  is the meaning of human existence just to end suffering? when we give up all goals (aka attachments, cravings, etc.), are we really "free" from suffering? animals are most likely not having any goals, but we cannot deny that animals do suffer, we humans directly cause immense suffering for animals.

I guess "give up all goals" also means give up "happiness", for happiness and suffering are two sides of the same coin.  so I am supposed to just sit on my cousin and experience my equanimity, nothing to do because there is no self either, how is such life different than committing suicide?   

John Not2 - another way to look at Mark's comment is to focus on words like 'agent' and 'wish' and 'achieve' and  'goals'.  It is easy to assume that a fulfilling life must strive after change or give up on worthwhile endeavour.  But there is actually another option ... to simply live naturally interacting within the flow of existence, and to let your moral action come from a place of centrelessness and non-agency.  Then you are not striving, but you are still doing good for yourself and others. So you should give up the goal, but not the action.

No need to just sit on the cushion and experience equanimity. This is part of the practice, but not the objective.  The objective is to use the practice to improve ourselves. And then to use the improved self to live a better and happier life. And yes you still exist as a person - adopting nihilism is a misunderstanding. Just look at the strong personalities expressed by many advanced meditators!  So you will rediscover your psycho-physical being and the porous boundries you have the local environment. But you will drop the illusory striving self - that is just a mental tapeworm that  is a byproduct of our clinging and craving. It's a faulty out of control feedback loop.

Pain is physical, and remins, but there is very little suffering. There is happiness, and in fact this becomes the natural resting state. So it is a really good life, very much worth living.  And if you want to find meaning, or God, you are much better equipped to look once you are spiritually liberated. I would suspect most people wouldn't have to look far, and many find that meaning in helping others. 


aloha curious,

   Well said.

terry

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 4:58 PM as a reply to Mark.
The OP had clearly stated in the first post:

"Please don't deliver knee-jerk reactions like “There is so much worth living for!”, or “How would your loved ones feel?”, or "You're still just a kid!". If there is no substance in your post, don't bother replying, and I know people will inevitably  tell me I should get on an anti-depressant or talk to a therapist. I've done both, by the way. What I suffer from isn't clinical depression. I know what clinical depression is like. What I suffer from is unsatisfactoriness."


so all of you brain dead shrinks please have some respect and decency, stay away from this thread, let those who are mature enough, brave enough, to honestly discuss this "scary" subject like grown-up humans, without having to be polluted by the toxic words like 
clinical depression, anxiety, mental illness and other garbage!

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 5:11 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Jason Massie:
I find service work to be a good counterbalance to stuff like this. 
Maybe foster unwanted animals, help homeless, sick or terminal.

The happiness derived from getting some need met is hollow compared to selfless service. Try to find a way of being of service that is a solution vs one that prolongs the problem through dependence. Send metta while serving and investigate the joy you get out of it. 

You could also make a donation to test the waters but  the effects are less dramatic.
Thanks for your advice.  for decades, I had been a devotee to many Hindu gurus and practiced selflessness service, as many had done for thousands of years according to Hindu spiritual traditions, but I have come to the realization that this is not the solution to the human sufferings at all.  Many thousands of years of such service practiced by Hindu (and other) spiritual devotees and it had failed to improve the conditions of human suffering, not at the very least.

aloha john,

   How could any embodied being not suffer? Yudhisthira thought that the most remarkable thing about people is that they see beings dying all around them and still don't believe it will happen to them.

   What's a little broken clay among friends, eh?

   You're right about service as a goal in itself: "the golden chain." The goal is dropping the self, the ego, the attachment to an individual personality instead of attachment to the actual divine qualities of love, truth, beauty and peace which are (nearer to) the true goal. We seek in things these qualities, and are disappointed, of course. Without the weight of responsibility we are free to attend to the Real needs of people.

   What goes up must come down, and happiness and satisfaction with one's conditions of embodied life is always balanced by equal dissatisfaction. This perception is in itself dissatisfying. The seeker ends up burdened by doubt as well as the normal load of unhappiness. Being an ego sucks. It will always suck. Give up sucking. "The way-er, sick of being sick, is no longer sick" - lao tse."Take no medicine in an illness caused by no fault of one's own. It will pass of itself" - yi jing. There is no need to seek the truth, just cease to cherish opinions. The ego makes its living by insisting it is necessary. Try do without it and see how much easier life becomes. No worries.

   Like any habit, giving up egotism is painful and difficult. Like disciplining a puppy, your efforts will be rewarded for a lifetime.

   Doubt, at least, can be retired. After a life of seeking that alone is greatly liberating.

terry



uncle john's band
(the grateful dead)

Well the first days are the hardest days, don't you worry any more,
Cause when life looks like easy street, there is danger at your door.
Think this through with me, let me know your mind,
Wo, oh, what I want to know, is are you kind?
It's a buck dancer's choice my friend; better take my advice.
You know all the rules by now and the fire from the ice.
Will you come with me? won't you come with me?
Wo, oh, what I want to know, will you come with me?
Goddamn, well I declare, have you seen the like?
Their walls are built of cannonballs, their motto is "don't tread on me".
Come hear uncle John's band playing to the tide,
Come with me, or go alone, he's come to take his children home.
It's the same story the crow told me; it's the only one he knows.
Like the morning sun you come and like the wind you go.
Ain't no time to hate, barely time to wait,
Wo, oh, what I want to know, where does the time go?
I live in a silver mine and I call it beggar's tomb;
I got me a violin and I beg you call the tune,
Anybody's choice, I can hear your voice.
Wo, oh, what I want to know, how does the song go?
Come hear uncle John's band by the riverside,
Got some things to talk about, here beside the rising tide.
Come hear uncle John's band playing to the tide,
Come on along, or go alone, he's come to take his children home.
Wo, oh, what I want to know, how does the song go.

Songwriters: Jerome J. Garcia / Robert C. Hunter

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 5:15 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Jinxed P:
John Not2:
Thank you for your "reasons", but none of them answered the question: why life and not suicide? why life is "better" than death?

Is that because of the story of the river, the sun, the water, the body, etc. etc., that somehow should make life any "better" than death? why people just say "anything" to defend/support their belief/position without even considering the rationality and validity of their "reasons"?

Preferring life to death is arbitrary and irrational, and yet somehow humans seemed to cling to the groundless belief that living is "right" and committing suicide is "wrong", how bizarre!

Do chickens believe that their meaning of life is to produce eggs and to contribute their flesh for human consumption?  it appears so, isn't it?  That is because chickens are "domesticated",  by humans, to believe in such beliefs.  So it does not sound too far fetched to think that humans too may have been "domesticated" (by who?) to believe that humans shall choose suffering instead of ending their lives voluntarily?

Life is better than death because there is no happiness in death. Psychological studies have shown that most people are happy. They experience more positive than negative emotions and are more satisfied with their lives than not. 

Now if one's life was nothing but endless pain and torture, than sure, suicide could be a reasonable option. But that's not the case for the vast majority of people. 

Why the obsession with suffering? Being overly sensitive to suffering is a symptom of anxiety and depression.  People without these illnesses aren't so focused on suffering. They spend most of their time thinking about pleasurable things they could be doing, not on how to avoid suffering. 

Even Buddha, as a prince, recognized that life is suffering, which was his reason to seek solutions.  The 4 noble truths stated clearly that Life is suffering.  The "pleasurable things" will not bring happiness to life, but suffering, for both "pleasures" and "things" are impermanent and should be abandoned/detached, otherwise one must suffer.

   Precisely...

(?)

   The problem must not be one of lack of insight.


t

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 5:18 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
I wondered the same thing for many years, but since what I believe was stream entry I can hardly imagine how I could think like that. It is difficult to put an answer into words, though. I don’t know how much of this is only temporary. Maybe you had stream entry long before me?

Suffering hasn’t come to an end for me, but it is worthwhile in a way that it wasn’t before. Existence in itself is beautiful.


   "Existence is itself beautiful."

I love it.

t

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 5:32 PM as a reply to terry.
Terry, 

exactly, but you see how wrong those shrinks are: they misled people to seek "pleasurable things" while labeling others for having symptoms of anxiety and depression and mental illness?  those goddamn shrinks should be banned from this planet!

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 6:13 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Thank you for your "reasons", but none of them answered the question: why life and not suicide? why life is "better" than death?

Is that because of the story of the river, the sun, the water, the body, etc. etc., that somehow should make life any "better" than death? why people just say "anything" to defend/support their belief/position without even considering the rationality and validity of their "reasons"?

Preferring life to death is arbitrary and irrational, and yet somehow humans seemed to cling to the groundless belief that living is "right" and committing suicide is "wrong", how bizarre!

Do chickens believe that their meaning of life is to produce eggs and to contribute their flesh for human consumption?  it appears so, isn't it?  That is because chickens are "domesticated",  by humans, to believe in such beliefs.  So it does not sound too far fetched to think that humans too may have been "domesticated" (by who?) to believe that humans shall choose suffering instead of ending their lives voluntarily?


   Which brings to mind the age-old question, "why does the chicken cross the road." What is the meaning of "meaning"? 

   I don't think it is meaning which concerns people, but meaninglessness. The sneaking insight that none of "this" really matters. All creatures want to make a living and reproduce, Is there any meaning beyond this? Not for chickens, certainly. They eat, they reproduce, and they are happy.

  You could do the same. Or you could aspire to being god's viceregent on earth. Your choice.

   You know suicide is not a viable choice. Suicidal thoughts are by definition pathological. You want people to convince you life is worth living. If people even make the attempt, it provides such proof: the medium is the message.

   Unfortunately for this little exercise, "life" - so-called life - really isn't worth living. At least, not for the sake of ego, who is bound to lose. "Live" life however you like, there is no satisfactory end or condition. Give it up. Accept non-entity. What do you have to lose?

terry



tao te ching, trans mitchell


71.

Not-knowing is true knowledge. 
Presuming to know is a disease. 
First realize that you are sick; 
then you can move toward health. The Master is her own physician. 
She has healed herself of all knowing. 
Thus she is truly whole. 



tao te ching, trans yutang


71. SICK-MINDEDNESS

Who knows that he does not know is the highest; 
Who (pretends to) know what he does not know is sick-minded. 
And who recognizes sick-mindedness as sick-mindedness is not sick-minded. 
The Sage is not sick-minded. 
Because he recognizes sick-mindedness as sick mindedness, 
Therefore he is not sick-minded.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 6:27 PM as a reply to Jinxed P.
Jinxed P:
John Not2:
Jinxed P:


And scientific studies on human well-being show that most people are happy, and that most people experience more positive than negative emotions. If this is not the case with you, than something is wrong with you, not with humanity. 

Evolution has given us a pretty good reason to be happy. Happy people are more fun to be around. They are more likely to make friends and happiness is more attractive to potential mates, meaning happy people are more likely to have social support and more likely to pass on their genes.

The natural, baseline state of human beings is more happiness than suffering. 

 


In an earlier post today I have commented on animal domestication and human domestication, and questioned: "who is benefiting from the human domestication?" Your thinking is the typical "domesticated humanity" brain-wash, they are programmed beliefs (i.e. domestication), not different than that of domesticated chickens that believe in animal domestication and happily be food for humans without awareness of domestication and without resistance. I really feel sorry for all the domesticated sheeples on the planet, not that I am any better than any fellow humans, but I can see clearly how humans are domesticated just like domesticated animals, and I really hope that more people would wake up to this reality sooner than later.

1.Do you believe a wild chimpanzee is domesticated?   (by definition the answer is no)
2.Does a wild chimpanzee suffer? 
3.Is the life of a wild chimpanzee, who is happy most of the time,  worth living?

4. Would you consider a human, living 30,000 years ago as a hunter-gatherer, domesticated?
5. Does a hunter-gatherer human suffer?
6. Is the life of a  hunter-gatherer human who is happy most of the time, worth living?

7. Is a dog's life, a happy pup who spends most of his life wagging his tail,  worth living even though it is domesticated?


   If your hunter gatherer was married, and s/he probably was, then yes, they were domesticated. By definition.

   Domestic animals are often well treated and "happy,'" particularly pets. A dog is pleased to be your loyal friend and companion; bred to it. Feed and care for an animal and it will be your friend, with rare exceptions. Benefit is benefit, abuse is abuse. Compassion is the remedy for cruelty.

   Human animals, fed and cared for, will still be dissatisfied. Especially if domesticated. We chafe at the bit. I used to wonder, why do husbands and wives abuse each other so? and I realized: no one else would put up with it.

   Thoroughly domesticated sheeples are as happy as clams. Becoming dissatisfied is a wake up call.

t

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 6:29 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Terry, 

exactly, but you see how wrong those shrinks are: they misled people to seek "pleasurable things" while labeling others for having symptoms of anxiety and depression and mental illness?  those goddamn shrinks should be banned from this planet!


1.Do you think anxiety exists?

2. Do you believe that people feel fear, their heart rates elevate, they worry, they sweat? That's anxiety. Do you admit that people have anxiety?

3. Do you admit some people have more anxiety than others?

4. Do you admit that some people have anxiety so bad that it interferes with their ability to function in normal situations. Such as they may have agoraphobia and are afraid to leave the house, or ride in elevators?

When someone has these anxious feelings, to a large degree, to a point where it hinders quality of life dramatically, what do you call it? ... Hint..It's called "An anxiety disorder"

If you believe in these things, and I can't see how you couldn't... you believe anxiety disorders exist..
I could do the same thing for depression, but you get the point. 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 6:37 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
I am negative about suicide because I have experienced the shock following my father’s suicide. I think he honestly believed that we would be better off without him, but we weren’t. It is violent and sudden and it traumatizes people in one’s surroundings. I don’t blame my dad for taking his life. He didn’t see the alternatives. I wish he would have at least tried to move into a little cottage in the woods and in silence as he always dreamt of. He never saw that as a realistic possibility, and so he kept striving in the sort of life that never suited him. I promised myself that if I were ever to seriously consider suicide, I would first let go of all the things that didn’t make me happy. So what if the dream doesn’t work out? Death always remains as an option. It’s never too late for that. That’s the one thing that nobody misses out on.

aloha linda,

   My dad shot himself in the temple with a thirty-eight while I was in the next room. I found out then what the phrase, "my blood ran cold" meant. I had to put on a coat in the arizona heat to treat my shivering. He had terminal cancer and was slowly drowning in his own fluids, and medical science had given him up. It was still violent and shocking. He deliberately picked a time when I was there because he trusted me to deal with the situation. I should have known what he was up to; he had me shut off his oxygen a minute before, and I didn't think why. I can hardly think of a time when himself wasn't brooding and unhappy; he'd tried suicide before, with less reason.

   As a child I hated the abusive old bastard, and swore from little kid time I would never be like him. Yet, all too often over the years, the old man's ghost would set upon me. Still, without his example I might have been a normal person and hated my life.


terry

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/9/19 7:18 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Terry, 

exactly, but you see how wrong those shrinks are: they misled people to seek "pleasurable things" while labeling others for having symptoms of anxiety and depression and mental illness?  those goddamn shrinks should be banned from this planet!

   People seek the advice they want to follow. Psychiatrists traditionally believe that paying their fee is part of the therapy. It's a transaction: you get what you pay for.

   Priests/shrinks etc are members of the world's second oldest profession. What could be more profitable than selling nothing for something? Even the buddha was an old swindler, according to mumon (the gateless gate): he "sold dog's head for mutton."

   This said, most of the professional gigs in the world are partially useless, completely useless or harmful. We are not here to curse them, but to help. And to honor those who do it well.

   I have always felt the real solution to capitalism is the boycott. I'm still unshrunk.

   (who will counsel the counselors?)

terry



tao te ching, trans yutang


27. ON STEALING THE LIGHT

'A good runner leaves no track. 
A good speech leaves no flaws for attack. 
A good reckoner makes use of no counters. 
A well-shut door makes use of no bolts,

And yet cannot be opened. 
A well-tied knot makes use of no rope, 
And yet cannot be untied.

Therefore the Sage is good at helping men; 
For that reason there is no rejected (useless) person. 
He is good at saving things; 
For that reason there is nothing rejected.
—This is called stealing the Light.

Therefore the good man is the Teacher of the bad. 
And the bad man is the lesson of the good.
He who neither values his teacher 
Nor loves the lesson 
Is one gone far astray, 
Though he be learned. —
Such is the subtle secret.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 4:15 AM as a reply to terry.
terry:

aloha linda,

   My dad shot himself in the temple with a thirty-eight while I was in the next room. I found out then what the phrase, "my blood ran cold" meant. I had to put on a coat in the arizona heat to treat my shivering. He had terminal cancer and was slowly drowning in his own fluids, and medical science had given him up. It was still violent and shocking. He deliberately picked a time when I was there because he trusted me to deal with the situation. I should have known what he was up to; he had me shut off his oxygen a minute before, and I didn't think why. I can hardly think of a time when himself wasn't brooding and unhappy; he'd tried suicide before, with less reason.

   As a child I hated the abusive old bastard, and swore from little kid time I would never be like him. Yet, all too often over the years, the old man's ghost would set upon me. Still, without his example I might have been a normal person and hated my life.


terry


Oh, terry, that’s tough. I’m so sorry.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 4:27 AM as a reply to terry.
My experience with so called shrinks differs from that. In my case, it was covered by social security for the most part, so I didn’t pay for most of it. Neither one of them had me seek pleasureable things. I basically went there because I thought there must be something wrong with me for not appreciating all those things that I was supposed to appreciate. In therapy I learned to see things for what they were, albeit on a content level. I learned to accept the unsatisfactoriness as my experienced truth and stop feeling guilty for it. I learned that I was under no obligation to appreciate things that I didn’t appreciate, and that was quite the relief. I also learned to take care of the mammal me and listen to its boundaries and communicate them before I was too exhausted to do it in a constructive way.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 6:19 AM as a reply to curious.
curious:
Moderators - are you able to edit the title of the post to just 'A stop gap ...' so that we don't have the rest plastered on top of the DhO discussion threads all the time? 


That's a good idea, but I just tried and couldn't figure out how to do it. Perhaps it requires admin access beyond just mod? At any rate, I alerted Daniel and will find out.

Just FYI, if anything comes up that needs moderator attention, it's best to just email the mods at the contact info found here: https://www.dharmaoverground.org/home. We try to keep an eye on things as best we can but it's easy to miss things, especially in busy threads like this one.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 6:48 AM as a reply to Andromeda.
I just tried to edit the topic title and it now appears in the message board menu system, "Recent Posts" as "A stop-gap". With any luck, this edit will do the trick. It does not appear to have changed to the title of the existing posts to this topic. We'll see what happens.

EDIT: It appears that all I've done is to change the subject line of the original post and that changes what users see in the message menus but not in the posts that follow.

Chris Marti
DhO Moderator

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 7:38 AM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2 --

I hope this is not another Scientism brainwashed shrink who is going to give another lecture of "if you don't believe in our cult, then you must be mentally ill, suffering from anxiety and depression".  

I'm trying to get past your terminology and address the underlying issue. So let me try again: how is what you are saying different from what the historical Buddha asserted? It seems you have a similar view - that human beings are unaware of their actual status. They only think they are awake (in your terms un-domesticated). But in actuality, they are all not awake (domesticated).

Yes?

No?





RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 8:19 AM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
The OP had clearly stated in the first post:

"Please don't deliver knee-jerk reactions like “There is so much worth living for!”, or “How would your loved ones feel?”, or "You're still just a kid!". If there is no substance in your post, don't bother replying, and I know people will inevitably  tell me I should get on an anti-depressant or talk to a therapist. I've done both, by the way. What I suffer from isn't clinical depression. I know what clinical depression is like. What I suffer from is unsatisfactoriness."


so all of you brain dead shrinks please have some respect and decency, stay away from this thread, let those who are mature enough, brave enough, to honestly discuss this "scary" subject like grown-up humans, without having to be polluted by the toxic words like 
clinical depression, anxiety, mental illness and other garbage!

During a period many years ago in which I was grappling with meaninglessness and existential despair, someone turned me on to the works of the Nobel Prize-winning French philosopher Albert Camus. I eventually stopped trying to figure this stuff out strictly with the intellect and that was definitely for the best, but his philosophy of the absurd really resonated with me at the time. He wrote an essay on suicide and apparently claimed, "There is only one serious philosophical problem and that is suicide. All other questions follow from that." Here's a bit from Wikipedia:

[Edited to add a quote.]
The Myth of Sisyphus (FrenchLe Mythe de Sisyphe) is a 1942 philosophical essay by Albert Camus. The English translation by Justin O'Brien was first published in 1955.In the essay Camus introduces his philosophy of the absurd, man's futile search for meaning, unity, and clarity in the face of an unintelligible world devoid of God and eternal truths or values. Does the realization of the absurd require suicide? Camus answers, "No. It requires revolt." He then outlines several approaches to the absurd life. The final chapter compares the absurdity of man's life with the situation of Sisyphus, a figure of Greek mythology who was condemned to repeat forever the same meaningless task of pushing a boulder up a mountain, only to see it roll down again. The essay concludes, "The struggle itself ... is enough to fill a man's heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy".

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 11:12 AM as a reply to terry.
terry:

   How could any embodied being not suffer?


 You nailed it!  and suicide is one effective method to dis-embody, hence it should end suffering?

Shrinks please stay away, no one asks for toxic waste coming out of a shrink's mouth. 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 12:12 PM as a reply to John Not2.
I guess we don’t know. Possibly, but it could also be the case that one comes back again with similar karma and additional karma from traumatizing people and choosing nihilism.

Do you want to experience anything? Or would you rather not experience anything at all?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 12:30 PM as a reply to John Not2.
So what are you actually concerned with here - physical suffering, or the much more broad dukkha (Not equivalent as others have mentioned)? From a Buddhist perspective, from which this forum heavily takes inspiration at least, dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 12:59 PM as a reply to John Not2.
S.:
If you kill yourself and you are not enlightened, you will go to Hell. There is some possibility you will be a suffering ghost. Thai Buddhism has a lot of methods for working with and encountering the suffering ghosts of suicides. The Dalai Lama would say if you are lucky then best case is you will have another similar human life that is the same or worse. Depends on you. You would perpetuate the state of suffering even longer.

(https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=jjcZQp0aqDc)

If you are enlightened you may see that there is no self to destroy.

Might as well destroy the sky,
S
An enlightened being knows:
  1. The is no duality, hence the concept of hell is to scare the ignorant unenlightened humans (false self)
  2. there is no "self" to destroy, correct, suicide destroys the body, which is just a form, that this elusive concept of "I" (your "I", my "I", everybody's "I") is still clinging on
  3. Dalai Lama is a meat-eater, a fake Buddhist (Tibetan Buddhism is not Buddhism but a collection of made-up lies and superstitions), why should I even care about what he says?
  4. We are indeed destroying the sky, destroying the earth, killing the living beings, do you really think that this sky will last forever?
  5. You don't seem to possess any meaningful insights concerning the subject matter, except for regurgitating scary superstitions that you had been programmed, scary superstitions consist of threatening consequences of the result of commits suicide, designed to discourage people from committing suicide, am I not correct on that?  

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 1:09 PM as a reply to Milo.
Milo:
So what are you actually concerned with here - physical suffering, or the much more broad dukkha (Not equivalent as others have mentioned)? From a Buddhist perspective, from which this forum heavily takes inspiration at least, dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


The concern is: why is that suicide is considered "wrong"? that's all, really!

The body is just a form, what's the big deal of detaching from this impermanent body form via the method of suicide?  Who is benefiting from stopping others from detaching themselves from their impermanent body form?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 1:14 PM as a reply to John Not2.
In Theravada Buddhism, there is an idea that all suffering ends when nothing is experienced or perceived. That condition is called "Nibbana." There are only a few ways to experience Nibbana: to practice to the point of cessation, or to die. So death clearly represents the end of suffering. Why, then, do human beings fear it?

I do think that's an interesting question for meditators to ponder.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 1:31 PM as a reply to John Not2.
The primary beneficiary is you. Being a human is a good place to be for seeking elightenment. If that's your goal, and you accept that ignorance and craving don't get extinguished with disembodiment, then why shred your winning ticket?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 1:47 PM as a reply to Milo.
Milo:
dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


If the dukkha is stemmed from craving and ignorance, then where did craving and ignorance stem from? Would it be fair to assume that they stem from having this body form? Without a body, where would cravings araise from?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 1:57 PM as a reply to John Not2.
S.:

If you reject Tibetan Buddhism wholesale, I am surprised you would have any interest in Buddhism in general. Why?


Are you actually confused true Buddhism with fake Buddhism (like Tibetan)? maybe reading some books on the history of Tibetan Buddhism would help?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 1:59 PM as a reply to John Not2.
If the dukkha is stemmed from craving and ignorance, then where did craving and ignorance stem from? Would it be fair to assume that they stem from having this body form? Without a body, where would cravings araise from?

Craving and ignorance are caused by the mind.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 2:12 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
If the dukkha is stemmed from craving and ignorance, then where did craving and ignorance stem from? Would it be fair to assume that they stem from having this body form? Without a body, where would cravings araise from?

Craving and ignorance are caused by the mind.

and when the body is destroyed, where is the mind?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 2:24 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Respectfully disagree. All the Theravada sources I've studied would argue strongly against that, IMO. If death automatically resulted in freedom from Samsara, then practice would indeed be far less consequential. Unless you are suggesting that there is a temporary glimpse and then DO and rebirth kicks back in again?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 2:31 PM as a reply to John Not2.
and when the body is destroyed, where is the mind?

I don't know. I've never experienced that condition. My personal experience says body and mind seem to be inextricably intertwined. What do you think?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 2:32 PM as a reply to John Not2.
S.:
Talking about practices, phenomenology, and with people who have experiences with these things is more useful than the history.

An interesting example of a Buddhist teacher who has stepped through multiple traditions is Shinzen Young.

He started out as a Vajrayana practitioner (not Tibetan Vajrayana but Japanese Shingon), and he has talked about how the Shingon practices can produce the same insights as in other traditions:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_VizlDWcTA

He also learned a good amount of noting and Theravada techniques and perspectives from Bill Hamilton and elsewhere, and is still very big on noting. 

Rounding out his experiences with all of the conventional vehicles, he became a Zen monk too.

He has this good video describing differences between his Zen experience and Vipassana:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7WiM-w5qqmE

(in short, my takeaway from this is 'boring' Vipassana is a more regular and direct method to get enlightened, but Zen arguably prepares you better for what it is like to 'be' an enlightened person once you get there)

He also describes a talk from a Rinzai Zen teacher that seems to clearly map to a description of the knowledges of insight. He talks about the "champagne bubbles" or "foam" of the Arising & Passing Away, and the emergent wave-like experiences, and flow experiences, and equanimity and cessation as the birth/death of the universe/duality when everything "comes together" and disappears.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eSv5ELuujjs

You can also listen to conversations Daniel Ingram recorded with other teachers across traditions like Kenneth Folk (Theravada) and Hokai Sobol (Vajrayana). There are some interesting cross-traditional insights here as they talk out some of the terminology and variance, and the results are surprisingly in line with what Shinzen Young says in the earlier video.

https://soundcloud.com/daneilmingram/sets/hurricane-ranch-discussions

Kenneth Folk also derives some of his practices with inspiration from Tibetan Buddhism, such as a developed interest in Mahamudra:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-44VxPiQtVg

Jack Kornfield has a great essay about enlightenment and different traditions that I think is really wonderful: 

https://www.inquiringmind.com/article/2701_w_kornfield-enlightenments

Each Buddist meditation system is by itself a complete system that cannot be altered, or, god forbid, "improved".  Shinzen Young's approach to meditation by adding deductive Scientism garbage to the perfect Buddhist meditation systems is like opening a TV set to add some parts from an Apple computer and some maple syrups and claiming that it would turn a working TV set into an even better TV capable of displaying not 4K resolution but 4 Billion K resolution, not 2D, 3D, but 4D, 5D nD vision, etc. etc., I can't believe that people can't understand such simple logic!

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 2:34 PM as a reply to Milo.
All the Theravada sources I've studied would argue strongly against that, IMO.

Milo, care to cite your sources? 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 2:49 PM as a reply to John Not2.
Wrong is a strong word. I wouldn’t say that suicide is wrong. It does hurt people who care, though, because most people have some attachment to their friends and loved ones. Even misinformed suffering is suffering.

For me personally I would also not want my karma to be inherited by anyone in a bad shape, and death takes away all my chances of dealing with my karma. There is enough of avoidance behavior in that mix already without that major avoidance. Avoidance issues suck.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 3:10 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
terry:

aloha linda,

   My dad shot himself in the temple with a thirty-eight while I was in the next room. I found out then what the phrase, "my blood ran cold" meant. I had to put on a coat in the arizona heat to treat my shivering. He had terminal cancer and was slowly drowning in his own fluids, and medical science had given him up. It was still violent and shocking. He deliberately picked a time when I was there because he trusted me to deal with the situation. I should have known what he was up to; he had me shut off his oxygen a minute before, and I didn't think why. I can hardly think of a time when himself wasn't brooding and unhappy; he'd tried suicide before, with less reason.

   As a child I hated the abusive old bastard, and swore from little kid time I would never be like him. Yet, all too often over the years, the old man's ghost would set upon me. Still, without his example I might have been a normal person and hated my life.


terry


Oh, terry, that’s tough. I’m so sorry.

   It was a long time ago, and I wasn't a child then. He was dying anyway. We had a chance to kiss and make up, forgive each other. And he saw his grandchildren a last time. It was actually ok. And the family gave me a pass on the funeral. 

   Your emotional trauma was probably greater. I'm an er kind of guy anyway. I'm sorry for your loss.

terry

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 3:11 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Yes, after work : )

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 3:23 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
terry:

   How could any embodied being not suffer?


 You nailed it!  and suicide is one effective method to dis-embody, hence it should end suffering?

Shrinks please stay away, no one asks for toxic waste coming out of a shrink's mouth. 


how about murder? by the same logic...

(suicide makes people uncomfortable; talking about murder will get you arrested...tread carefully)

if hatred is "toxic waste," how is what comes out of your mouth any different? at least what shrinks peddle doesn't stink of rejection...

perhaps any "toxic waste" producer is a "shrink," in your view...

chris asking what is the real issue here is starting so seem like a reasonable question...


terry

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 3:34 PM as a reply to John Not2.
S.:
I am not personally interested in Shinzen's own systems. You are right there may be some wisdom in working a practice rigorously without trying incompatible things all at once. You may not even be able to do metta and Vipassana really at the same time using Thai practices from the same teacher. But I am interested in experiences across traditions by people who worked seriously in them. In the Vajrayana video he describes his first 100 day solo retreat at Mt. Koya doing a practice that clearly led to insight into no-self. He was not doing any other practice while there. It is clear how the practice builds powerful concentration and also observation of no-self and impermanence.

He later became pretty fluent in the Theravada flavors of practice, and understands and experiences and discusses cessations. I think he is right both paths lead to enlightenment, and his Shingon background is valuable for that reason.

Personally I think a good rule is to teach people the same method that worked for you. Maybe if you try another method you learned after enlightenment and see many people benefit from it then that is fine, but you risk having even more trouble relating to people who are working from a different stage in a different way.
I don't have a big issue with layering traditional Buddhist meditation systems at different stages of meditation techniques like one learns to walk first, then he learns to run, but adding the deductive materialistic Scientism garbage (whatever fancy names they made up, neuroscience, brain science, ...) is a totally different story, they are regressing spiritual practices back to materialism believe systems which they believe are superior to ancient wisdom and spiritual knowledge.  I see that as westerner's big ego at the display.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 3:38 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Milo:
So what are you actually concerned with here - physical suffering, or the much more broad dukkha (Not equivalent as others have mentioned)? From a Buddhist perspective, from which this forum heavily takes inspiration at least, dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


The concern is: why is that suicide is considered "wrong"? that's all, really!

The body is just a form, what's the big deal of detaching from this impermanent body form via the method of suicide?  Who is benefiting from stopping others from detaching themselves from their impermanent body form?

Hey John. It is considered wrong because it harms other people. Survivors are harmed, and others may be encouraged by example to follow suit. So as a straightfoward empirical point it seems to create harm. Also, it is possible to botch the job and make your suffering worse.

What if you could alleviate all those problems, or didn't care?  Well, I would argue the potential for happiness is greater than the potential for suffering, so it is logical to pursue happiness rather than ending it all. Also, we are hardwired to strive, so evolution prepares us to not give up. The evidence seems to suggest that the desire to end it is a temporary emotional condition, rather than a logical evaluation, so the rational response is to try to help people deal with the emotional condition, rather than argue logic. When do these conditions not apply?  Mainly at end of life care for terminal illnesses, and that is where euthanasia seems to be more socially acceptable, although that is still a matter of argument.

Also, when I studied formal logic, we had to run through a proof that showed that if you assume contradictory premises you could prove any argument at all (using the technique of disjunction elimination). So if you assume the Buddha is right, and the Buddha is wrong, you can assert a logical proof of ANY point. So you can't really argue with someone prepared to hold contradictory premises, as they can just flip from one view to a completely different view simply to contradict the most recent point.  And then back again!  emoticon

Don't know if that helps.  But I'm just trying to play a straight bat to your queries (as we say in the cricket-playing countries).

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 3:40 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
I just tried to edit the topic title and it now appears in the message board menu system, "Recent Posts" as "A stop-gap". With any luck, this edit will do the trick. It does not appear to have changed to the title of the existing posts to this topic. We'll see what happens.

EDIT: It appears that all I've done is to change the subject line of the original post and that changes what users see in the message menus but not in the posts that follow.

Chris Marti
DhO Moderator
Thanks Andromeda, thanks Chris.  I think changing the message board title is enough.  Cheers, Malcolm

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 3:53 PM as a reply to John Not2.
S.:
If you kill yourself and you are not enlightened, you will go to Hell. There is some possibility you will be a suffering ghost. Thai Buddhism has a lot of methods for working with and encountering the suffering ghosts of suicides. The Dalai Lama would say if you are lucky then best case is you will have another similar human life that is the same or worse. Depends on you. You would perpetuate the state of suffering even longer.

(https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=jjcZQp0aqDc)

If you are enlightened you may see that there is no self to destroy.

Might as well destroy the sky,
S

aloha s,

   If one sees the six realms as existing right now here, the possibility is someone may already be a hungry ghost, or living in the hell realm. The hungry ghost is a being with a fat belly, a big mouth, and a tiny neck with an iron ring around it that prevents the poor creature from swallowing more than a tiny bit at any one time. Thus a being with a swollen appetite, a great maw, and an extremely limited ability to satisfy that appetite, resulting in immense frustration and psychic suffering. Typically the ghost intellectually knows that curbing the appetite is the path but that only adds to the suffering.

   Indeed, seeking to destroy the Self is the epitome of folly and ignorance. The mantis who challenges the oxcart, and is immediately crushed.


terry



from 'the myth of freedom' by chogyam trungpa



   The torture of the hungry ghost realm is not so much the pain of not finding what he wants; rather it is the insatiable hunger itself which causes pain. Probably if the monkey found vast quantities of food, he would not touch it at all; or else he would eat everything and then desire more. This is because, fundamentally, the monkey is fascinated with being hungry rather than with satisfying his hunger. The quick frustration of his attempts to satisfy his hunger enables him to be hungry again. So the pain and hunger of the preta loka, as with the aggression of the hell realm and the preoccupation of the other realms, provide the monkey with something exciting to occupy himself, something solid to relate to, something to make himself secure that he exists as a real person. He is afraid to give up the security and entertainment, afraid to venture out into the unknown world of open space. He would rather stay in his familiar prison, no matter how painful and oppressive it might be.

 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 3:59 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Milo:
So what are you actually concerned with here - physical suffering, or the much more broad dukkha (Not equivalent as others have mentioned)? From a Buddhist perspective, from which this forum heavily takes inspiration at least, dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


The concern is: why is that suicide is considered "wrong"? that's all, really!

The body is just a form, what's the big deal of detaching from this impermanent body form via the method of suicide?  Who is benefiting from stopping others from detaching themselves from their impermanent body form?

the prejudice against suicide stems from christian dogma... 

feel free...


t

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 4:04 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
In Theravada Buddhism, there is an idea that all suffering ends when nothing is experienced or perceived. That condition is called "Nibbana." There are only a few ways to experience Nibbana: to practice to the point of cessation, or to die. So death clearly represents the end of suffering. Why, then, do human beings fear it?

I do think that's an interesting question for meditators to ponder.

"everybody wanna go to heaven but nobody want dead"

peter tosh



it seems obvious to a biologist that people are naturally selected to fear death...those who don't fear death are not generally the best survivors...


t

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 4:49 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Milo:
So what are you actually concerned with here - physical suffering, or the much more broad dukkha (Not equivalent as others have mentioned)? From a Buddhist perspective, from which this forum heavily takes inspiration at least, dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


The concern is: why is that suicide is considered "wrong"? that's all, really!

The body is just a form, what's the big deal of detaching from this impermanent body form via the method of suicide?  Who is benefiting from stopping others from detaching themselves from their impermanent body form?


In Theravada Buddhism the orthodox dogma is that suicide will not end the suffering due to the functioning of karma, and regardless of the cause of death one will experience rebirth ... where the suffering will continue (with the exception of an Arahant). Liberation from suffering is expressed in the depth of the enlightenment and the corresponding rebirths to be endured ... Sotāpanna: up to seven rebirths in human/heavenly realm; Sakadāgāmi: one rebirth as a human; Anāgāmi: once more in heavenly realm; Arahant: no rebirth.

In this schema suicide does not offer any benefit or any solution to suffering and on the contrary is likely a detriment as it will result in negative karma and potential rebirth into a lower realm.

An exception could be if an enlightened person committed suicide. A good example is that of Ven. Ñānavīra Thera, a stream enterer who committed suicide. His reasoning was that as a Sotāpanna he would only be subjected to at most seven more rebirths in the human realm before total liberation  ...  therefor suicide did not present an obstacle to his full liberation from suffering. He was a well educated and well read Westerner who moved to SE Asia and became an ordained monk. He contracted a disease and the combined effects of the diseases (amoebiasis and satyriasis) and medical treatment prevented him from effectively practicing meditation. His reasoning was that since he could no longer practice towards liberation and suffered the attendent agony that entrained, suicide was the best choice out of several bad options. He wrote extensively on Buddhism as well as on his own reasoning and decision to commit suicide. He also left fascinating chronicles describing his day to day experiences and challenges living as a monk in a remote and wild area including encounters with poisonous snakes such as the Russell's Viper.



"Letters are a selection of 150 letters written by Ñāṇavīra Thera from his kuti in the Bundala Forest Reserve to local and foreign readers of the Notes who had requested explanation and clarification. Some are thinly disguised essays in a wholly modern idiom. The letters which are collected and published in Clearing the Path are not only something of a commentary on the Notes; they are, independently, a lucid discussion of how an individual concerned fundamentally with self-disclosure deals with the dilemma of finding himself in an intolerable situation, where the least undesirable alternative is suicide.

With openness, calmness, and considerable wit Ñāṇavīra Thera discusses with his correspondents (including his doctor, a judge, a provincial businessman, a barrister, a British diplomat, and another British citizen) the illnesses that plague him and what he can and cannot do about them, and about his own existence. His life as a Buddhist monk in a remote jungle abode is not incidental to the philosophy he expounds: the two are different aspects of the same thing, namely a vision that penetrates into the human situation both as universal and as particular, and recognises that it is this situation which it is the business of each of us to resolve for ourselves. In presenting this view Ñāṇavīra Thera offers a contemporary exposition of the Teaching of the Buddha. In living this view he evokes a dramatic situation wherein an individual resolutely faces those questions which every lucid person must eventually face. The letters are in language, idiom and quotations from a galaxy of thinkers such as Camus, Heidegger, Kierkegaard, Sartre, Kafka. Though familiar to a Western reader, it can be incomprehensible in part, to anyone without such background."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ñāṇavīra_Thera


In 1964, Ven. Ñānavīra was only 44 years old. He died a year later, on the 5th of July, 1965, by his own hand and deliberate decision. Suicide is of course regarded with peculiar horror and condemnation in our Judaeo-Christian civilisation, as an offence against God, perhaps incurring eternal torture in Hell, and even as a legal offence against the proprietary State. Ñānavīra Thera wrote extensively and carefully on the question of suicide, which arose for him because of the severity of the amoebiasis and other health problems. He mentioned the occurrence of a nervous disorder associated with the chronic amoebiasis and the prescribed medication, which combined to "leave me with little hope of making any further progress in the Buddhasāsana in this life". But it is doubtless best to allow the late Thera to speak for himself in his letters. Only after a careful reading of them should the reader form his own opinion.

https://www.nanavira.org/home/the-author

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 4:27 PM as a reply to terry.
terry:
John Not2:
terry:

   How could any embodied being not suffer?


 You nailed it!  and suicide is one effective method to dis-embody, hence it should end suffering?

Shrinks please stay away, no one asks for toxic waste coming out of a shrink's mouth. 


how about murder? by the same logic...

(suicide makes people uncomfortable; talking about murder will get you arrested...tread carefully)

if hatred is "toxic waste," how is what comes out of your mouth any different? at least what shrinks peddle doesn't stink of rejection...

perhaps any "toxic waste" producer is a "shrink," in your view...

chris asking what is the real issue here is starting so seem like a reasonable question...


terry
Have you observed that what shrinks had done when replying to this thread?  They just throw in blanket statements (yes, aka toxic waste) like (I para-phrase) "the fact that you are asking questions concerning the taboo subject of suicide is a clear indication that you are mentally ill, you have anxiety and chronic depression, but there is hope, you can seek help and get better....), and you actually think it is OK to insult innocent people with such vicious toxic waste? 

The western materialistic medical belief system is not a "God System", and shrinks are not "God's angels", who are commissioned by that schizophrenic old Whiteman "God" or Scientism God to force the toxic waste down our throats, you know?

 asking "what is the real issue" is a typical setup for shrinks to justifying injecting the following toxic waste statements to innocent victims, you think I am stupid and not able to see what is coming after that? 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 4:30 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
If the dukkha is stemmed from craving and ignorance, then where did craving and ignorance stem from? Would it be fair to assume that they stem from having this body form? Without a body, where would cravings araise from?

Craving and ignorance are caused by the mind.


aloha chris,

   Excellent point. One may think the baby craves milk and is ignorant of where it comes from, but the baby has no mind of craving and ignorance, no awareness of deficiency. The mind is conditioned to regard itself as "me" and separate, and with this ignorance begins. Craving follows on ignorance, and the world of desire is created. In the mind.

terry



from songs of innocence, william blake:


Infant Joy

'I have no name;
I am but two days old.'
What shall I call thee?
'I happy am,
Joy is my name.'
Sweet joy befall thee!

Pretty joy!
Sweet joy, but two days old.
Sweet joy I call thee:
Thou dost smile,
I sing the while;
Sweet joy befall thee!




from songs of experience, william blake


Infant Sorrow

My mother groaned, my father wept:
Into the dangerous world I leapt,
Helpless, naked, piping loud,
Like a fiend hid in a cloud.

Struggling in my father's hands,
Striving against my swaddling bands,
Bound and weary, I thought best
To sulk upon my mother's breast.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 4:35 PM as a reply to terry.
Can the mind exist without body?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 4:38 PM as a reply to John Not2.
Can the mind exist without body?

NO

Can consciousness exist without body?

YES

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 4:46 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John,

I'm confused as to whether or not you appreciate (early?) Buddhism or not, given how rebirth factors in. If you don't believe in rebirth, then there's no reason to value Buddhism, right? 

It seems that generally speaking nothing people are saying in response is landing in a useful way.

You ask, what is the preference of living versus suicide? It seems like nothing will convince you that life is superior to death. Perhaps then, in a certain light it isn't, as others have indicated that it's a feature of our biology and that our preferring it is dualistic in a sense. Death is a part of life, and therefore suicide is as well. There are those who have no other choice, and I do hope that their suffering truly does end when they do it. 
 
A long time ago, someone integral to a community I'm in killed themselves. People were devasted, hurt, angry, etc. Their act reminded me of the preciousness of life, and how beautiful theirs was. I felt a lot of compassion for them and continue to remember them fondly. It definitely had me thinking, as I could appreciate the challenges they faced. Whether it was right or wrong, it wasn't up for me to decide, and I never felt compelled to judge the act.  Above all, meeting and knowing them was important, valuable.

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 4:52 PM as a reply to lotb.
lotb:
John,

I'm confused as to whether or not you appreciate (early?) Buddhism or not, given how rebirth factors in. If you don't believe in rebirth, then there's no reason to value Buddhism, right? 

It seems that generally speaking nothing people are saying in response is landing in a useful way.

You ask, what is the preference of living versus suicide? It seems like nothing will convince you that life is superior to death. Perhaps then, in a certain light it isn't, as others have indicated that it's a feature of our biology and that our preferring it is dualistic in a sense. Death is a part of life, and therefore suicide is as well. There are those who have no other choice, and I do hope that their suffering truly does end when they do it. 
 
A long time ago, someone integral to a community I'm in killed themselves. People were devasted, hurt, angry, etc. Their act reminded me of the preciousness of life, and how beautiful theirs was. I felt a lot of compassion for them and continue to remember them fondly. It definitely had me thinking, as I could appreciate the challenges they faced. Whether it was right or wrong, it wasn't up for me to decide, and I never felt compelled to judge the act.  Above all, meeting and knowing them was important, valuable.

Actually, you have answered your own questions: death is part of life, there should not be bias against death and preferring life, therefore condemning suicide is really a groundless, illogical mind-programming/superstition, think about it!

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 4:56 PM as a reply to John Not2.
It is entirely possible that as humans evolved and matured more, at some point of time in the not so distant future, suicide would be considered a virtue, a heroic act, to be cherished and celebrated?

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 5:01 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
lotb:
John,

I'm confused as to whether or not you appreciate (early?) Buddhism or not, given how rebirth factors in. If you don't believe in rebirth, then there's no reason to value Buddhism, right? 

It seems that generally speaking nothing people are saying in response is landing in a useful way.

You ask, what is the preference of living versus suicide? It seems like nothing will convince you that life is superior to death. Perhaps then, in a certain light it isn't, as others have indicated that it's a feature of our biology and that our preferring it is dualistic in a sense. Death is a part of life, and therefore suicide is as well. There are those who have no other choice, and I do hope that their suffering truly does end when they do it. 
 
A long time ago, someone integral to a community I'm in killed themselves. People were devasted, hurt, angry, etc. Their act reminded me of the preciousness of life, and how beautiful theirs was. I felt a lot of compassion for them and continue to remember them fondly. It definitely had me thinking, as I could appreciate the challenges they faced. Whether it was right or wrong, it wasn't up for me to decide, and I never felt compelled to judge the act.  Above all, meeting and knowing them was important, valuable.

Actually, you have answered your own questions: death is part of life, there should not be bias against death and preferring life, therefore condemning suicide is really a groundless, illogical mind-programming/superstition, think about it!

The questions weren't for my own clarification but to understand where you're coming from, which you have cleared up in subsequent responses. 

Asking again: do you value Buddhism despite rebirth? 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 5:03 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
terry:
John Not2:
terry:

   How could any embodied being not suffer?


 You nailed it!  and suicide is one effective method to dis-embody, hence it should end suffering?

Shrinks please stay away, no one asks for toxic waste coming out of a shrink's mouth. 


how about murder? by the same logic...

(suicide makes people uncomfortable; talking about murder will get you arrested...tread carefully)

if hatred is "toxic waste," how is what comes out of your mouth any different? at least what shrinks peddle doesn't stink of rejection...

perhaps any "toxic waste" producer is a "shrink," in your view...

chris asking what is the real issue here is starting so seem like a reasonable question...


terry
Have you observed that what shrinks had done when replying to this thread?  They just throw in blanket statements (yes, aka toxic waste) like (I para-phrase) "the fact that you are asking questions concerning the taboo subject of suicide is a clear indication that you are mentally ill, you have anxiety and chronic depression, but there is hope, you can seek help and get better....), and you actually think it is OK to insult innocent people with such vicious toxic waste? 

The western materialistic medical belief system is not a "God System", and shrinks are not "God's angels", who are commissioned by that schizophrenic old Whiteman "God" or Scientism God to force the toxic waste down our throats, you know?

 asking "what is the real issue" is a typical setup for shrinks to justifying injecting the following toxic waste statements to innocent victims, you think I am stupid and not able to see what is coming after that? 


   I doubt your "shrink" was trying to insult you, many people think it is helpful to suggest you get counseling, etc, since they themselves have no idea how to help. Whereas, your blanket condemnation of tibetan buddhism as "lies" etc is obviously insulting and grossly ignorant.

   The fact that some of your criticisms are valid doesn't mean you don't have a bad attitude.

   Also, it is not unfair when you offer suicide as a valid alternative to practice, that on a practice forum people might try to help you with your "problem," particularly since you appear asking for help.

   Beliefs are not "lies." Most of the speakers mean well, and the rest think they mean well. Give us  a break.

terry

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 5:03 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
It is entirely possible that as humans evolved and matured more, at some point of time in the not so distant future, suicide would be considered a virtue, a heroic act, to be cherished and celebrated?
If society values it as a heroic act in light of whatever conditions may arise, then yes, it definitely seems possible. For instance, considering global warming and the strain each human life places upon the earth.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 5:06 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:



Can consciousness exist without body?

YES

no

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 5:28 PM as a reply to lotb.
There is no simple answer to the question of rebirth belief element in Buddhism.  In the early days of my spiritual exploration, I believed in different systems of Buddhism teachings, Hinduism teaching, and new-age spiritual gurus's "teachings", I believed in other people's beliefs, lies, manipulations, you name it, but we all had been there hadn't we?  I no longer believe in anything.

I practice Buddhist meditation, I observe and validate Jhana stages and Vipassana noting experiences, I don't blindly believe in anything without validating them first.  Rebirth is not something that I can validate, so although I can't believe in rebirth, I can't make any judgment against such belief either, so it is a mystery to me.  This does affect my opinion about suicide: since I don't know if rebirth is a real thing or just a superstition, I cannot say suicide is a risk-free choice, for if it is true that suicide negatively affects rebirth (if such thing exist), then perhaps suicide is a wrong thing to do.  My questioning suicide is reason based, not like most people, who form their opinion about suicide based not on rational reasons but on emotions and blind-faith. 

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 5:37 PM as a reply to lotb.
lotb:
John Not2:
lotb:
John,

I'm confused as to whether or not you appreciate (early?) Buddhism or not, given how rebirth factors in. If you don't believe in rebirth, then there's no reason to value Buddhism, right? 

It seems that generally speaking nothing people are saying in response is landing in a useful way.

You ask, what is the preference of living versus suicide? It seems like nothing will convince you that life is superior to death. Perhaps then, in a certain light it isn't, as others have indicated that it's a feature of our biology and that our preferring it is dualistic in a sense. Death is a part of life, and therefore suicide is as well. There are those who have no other choice, and I do hope that their suffering truly does end when they do it. 
 
A long time ago, someone integral to a community I'm in killed themselves. People were devasted, hurt, angry, etc. Their act reminded me of the preciousness of life, and how beautiful theirs was. I felt a lot of compassion for them and continue to remember them fondly. It definitely had me thinking, as I could appreciate the challenges they faced. Whether it was right or wrong, it wasn't up for me to decide, and I never felt compelled to judge the act.  Above all, meeting and knowing them was important, valuable.

Actually, you have answered your own questions: death is part of life, there should not be bias against death and preferring life, therefore condemning suicide is really a groundless, illogical mind-programming/superstition, think about it!

The questions weren't for my own clarification but to understand where you're coming from, which you have cleared up in subsequent responses. 

Asking again: do you value Buddhism despite rebirth? 


   Rebirth is not a deal breaker. Besides, buddhists always equivocate. The ego is not reborn, that is sure. What is reborn, if not a self, personality, soul or liver-of-life? We know these are all truly non-self. One's karma is supposed to be reborn. I really can't see how that matters to "me."
  
  I think everyone is the same one, and that one is reborn all the time. 

   I value buddhism for the brahmaviharas, for the 4nt's, for nirvana, and (mostly) for zen.

   As for "stream entry," come on in, the water's fine. Don't wait until your next life.


terry

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 5:41 PM as a reply to John Not2.
Thanks for your reply John, I appreciate where you're coming from in terms of adopting values / superstitions / etc. without questioning them. For instance, when I hear about bardo yoga I wonder why people are certain that it is indeed similar to the death consciousness state, if yogis had verified it as such having experienced NDEs. Even then that's not the same as dying outright, but claims suggest that experience has verified as such. I'm open to the notion and also lack of experience / insight, but am not keen on nailing down a yes or a no on that front. 

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 5:49 PM as a reply to terry.
terry:
lotb:
John Not2:
lotb:
John,

I'm confused as to whether or not you appreciate (early?) Buddhism or not, given how rebirth factors in. If you don't believe in rebirth, then there's no reason to value Buddhism, right? 

It seems that generally speaking nothing people are saying in response is landing in a useful way.

You ask, what is the preference of living versus suicide? It seems like nothing will convince you that life is superior to death. Perhaps then, in a certain light it isn't, as others have indicated that it's a feature of our biology and that our preferring it is dualistic in a sense. Death is a part of life, and therefore suicide is as well. There are those who have no other choice, and I do hope that their suffering truly does end when they do it. 
 
A long time ago, someone integral to a community I'm in killed themselves. People were devasted, hurt, angry, etc. Their act reminded me of the preciousness of life, and how beautiful theirs was. I felt a lot of compassion for them and continue to remember them fondly. It definitely had me thinking, as I could appreciate the challenges they faced. Whether it was right or wrong, it wasn't up for me to decide, and I never felt compelled to judge the act.  Above all, meeting and knowing them was important, valuable.

Actually, you have answered your own questions: death is part of life, there should not be bias against death and preferring life, therefore condemning suicide is really a groundless, illogical mind-programming/superstition, think about it!

The questions weren't for my own clarification but to understand where you're coming from, which you have cleared up in subsequent responses. 

Asking again: do you value Buddhism despite rebirth? 


   Rebirth is not a deal breaker. Besides, buddhists always equivocate. The ego is not reborn, that is sure. What is reborn, if not a self, personality, soul or liver-of-life? We know these are all truly non-self. One's karma is supposed to be reborn. I really can't see how that matters to "me."
  
  I think everyone is the same one, and that one is reborn all the time. 

   I value buddhism for the brahmaviharas, for the 4nt's, for nirvana, and (mostly) for zen.

   As for "stream entry," come on in, the water's fine. Don't wait until your next life.


terry
Terry,

Your sentiment regarding karma and how that would matter to "me" rings true.
One's karma is supposed to be reborn. I really can't see how that matters to "me."
To whom does it matter to then?

And yes, I agree that there's no need to wait for stream-entry. However rebirth shakes out I'm happy with the fruits of practice in this life.

Side note: I deeply appreciate your contributions on DhO – thank you.

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/10/19 6:04 PM as a reply to terry.
terry:
lotb:
John Not2:
lotb:
John,

I'm confused as to whether or not you appreciate (early?) Buddhism or not, given how rebirth factors in. If you don't believe in rebirth, then there's no reason to value Buddhism, right? 

It seems that generally speaking nothing people are saying in response is landing in a useful way.

You ask, what is the preference of living versus suicide? It seems like nothing will convince you that life is superior to death. Perhaps then, in a certain light it isn't, as others have indicated that it's a feature of our biology and that our preferring it is dualistic in a sense. Death is a part of life, and therefore suicide is as well. There are those who have no other choice, and I do hope that their suffering truly does end when they do it. 
 
A long time ago, someone integral to a community I'm in killed themselves. People were devasted, hurt, angry, etc. Their act reminded me of the preciousness of life, and how beautiful theirs was. I felt a lot of compassion for them and continue to remember them fondly. It definitely had me thinking, as I could appreciate the challenges they faced. Whether it was right or wrong, it wasn't up for me to decide, and I never felt compelled to judge the act.  Above all, meeting and knowing them was important, valuable.

Actually, you have answered your own questions: death is part of life, there should not be bias against death and preferring life, therefore condemning suicide is really a groundless, illogical mind-programming/superstition, think about it!

The questions weren't for my own clarification but to understand where you're coming from, which you have cleared up in subsequent responses. 

Asking again: do you value Buddhism despite rebirth? 


   Rebirth is not a deal breaker. Besides, buddhists always equivocate. The ego is not reborn, that is sure. What is reborn, if not a self, personality, soul or liver-of-life? We know these are all truly non-self. One's karma is supposed to be reborn. I really can't see how that matters to "me."
  
  I think everyone is the same one, and that one is reborn all the time. 

   I value buddhism for the brahmaviharas, for the 4nt's, for nirvana, and (mostly) for zen.

   As for "stream entry," come on in, the water's fine. Don't wait until your next life.


terry
The objective of Buddhist Nirvana is to end the cycle of rebirthing back to the physical realm (or worse), to stay in that non-dual oneness/one-only/not2 state/realm. 

In Advaita Vedanta that is the Turia state, or "4th state", Turia in Sanscript means 4th.

In Buddhism, attaining Stream Entry guarantees that one only has a maximum of 7 rebirths to go before one permanently leaves the physical realm.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/10/19 9:03 PM as a reply to Jinxed P.
Jinxed P:
John Not2:
Terry, 

exactly, but you see how wrong those shrinks are: they misled people to seek "pleasurable things" while labeling others for having symptoms of anxiety and depression and mental illness?  those goddamn shrinks should be banned from this planet!


1.Do you think anxiety exists?

2. Do you believe that people feel fear, their heart rates elevate, they worry, they sweat? That's anxiety. Do you admit that people have anxiety?

3. Do you admit some people have more anxiety than others?

4. Do you admit that some people have anxiety so bad that it interferes with their ability to function in normal situations. Such as they may have agoraphobia and are afraid to leave the house, or ride in elevators?

When someone has these anxious feelings, to a large degree, to a point where it hinders quality of life dramatically, what do you call it? ... Hint..It's called "An anxiety disorder"

If you believe in these things, and I can't see how you couldn't... you believe anxiety disorders exist..
I could do the same thing for depression, but you get the point. 

I wasn't going to respond, but for other people sake, I decided to respond:

Not all people are the same, many advanced meditators are free from identifying themselves with the physical bodies, sensations, feelings, emotions, mind, superstitions, and all limiting beliefs; we are not afraid of death, we are not attached to the false self, we are not afraid of utilizing the suicide exiting approach to leave the physical body, we welcome and celebrate death, and/or life, for they are the one and the same.  We understand that death is a certainty for humans (and all living beings), therefore having anxiety about death is absurd! (it's absurd because no matter how you try to escape death, you can't!)  Having depression about death is absurd!  Only humans have such absurd emotions, but not all humans have such absurd emotions, therefore, it is very wrong for you shrinks to dump your toxic waste to all people by assuming that we humans are all the same, we are not!  Just because you and your shrinks are not liberated, not enlightened, doesn't mean others are also low lives like you.  Again, you shrinks are incapable to understand this message, but I am writing this for the sake of normal people, to let them know that shrinks are low lives and to stay away from shrinks.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 2:01 AM as a reply to John Not2.
@John Not2: your level of idealism shows a degree of dogmatic naivete that may be less helpful than you believe it to be. Your harshness to the psychological professions may also be unhelpful and divisive, as plenty benefit from the skills and perspectives they learn from interactions with people in the psychological professions. The notion that awakened beings have no fear at all of death also doesn't reality test well in practice. Further, your claim to be one of these beings is curious: care to back that up with specifics?

Thanks,

Daniel
Owner of the DhO

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 3:59 AM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
In Theravada Buddhism, there is an idea that all suffering ends when nothing is experienced or perceived. That condition is called "Nibbana." There are only a few ways to experience Nibbana: to practice to the point of cessation, or to die. So death clearly represents the end of suffering. Why, then, do human beings fear it?

I do think that's an interesting question for meditators to ponder.

Here's a sampling of the canonical view in Theravada sources.

Note: all emphasis is mine.
--------------------------
 
http://www.buddhanet.net/pdf_file/dietolive.pdf
According to Theravada Buddhism... rebirth occurs immediately after death.
 
Details in the section “Death and Rebirth”
 
https://drarisworld.wordpress.com/2017/05/01/concept-of-death-in-theravada-buddhism/
According to Buddhist teaching, the death as we know it is considered an end of a temporary phenomenon, because following death the last stream of consciousness carrying the Kammic energy will influence an immediate rebirth in another existence.  At the time of one’s death, the last thought moment called the death consciousness (cuti citta), will be influenced by a volitional action that is to be the reproductive Kamma leading to the re-birth consciousness (patisandhi citta) of the following existence.
 
http://www.buddhistdoor.com/OldWeb/bdoor/0003e/sources/rebirth.htm
…With this death, the presumed identity of the once living being also ends. But the volitional impulses wrought by thought, word and deed will manifest in a way that we have come to call rebirth.
This continuity flows unbroken, with no intermediate stage between one life and the next -- contrary to Tibetan Buddhist traditions that expounds a bardo stage. Rebirth immediately takes place within the 31 planes of existence. The unrelenting immediacy of rebirth may be compared to the lighting of a new candle with another candle. Fire from the first candle immediately causes the new wick to burn. There is no waiting upon positive contact. And the new flame cannot be said to have been a part of the first lighted candle.
 
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/gunaratna/wheel102.html
Let us now examine the unduly dreaded dying moment which marks the end of man's present existence, only to commence another…
…The terminal thought goes through the same stages of progress as any other thought, with this differences that whereas the apperceptive stage of complete cognition known as javana or impulsion, which in the case of any other thought occupies seven thought-moments. At this apperceptive stage the dying person fully comprehends the death-sign. Then follows the stage of registering consciousness (tadalambana) when the death-sign is identified. This consciousness arises for two thought-moments and passes away. After this comes the stage of death consciousness (cuti citta). Then occurs death. This is what happens in this existence.
Now let us consider what happens in the next existence. Already the preliminaries for the arrival of a new being are in preparation. There is the male parent and there is the female parent. As explained previously a third factor, a psychic factor, is necessary to complete the preliminaries for the arising of a live embryo, and that is the relinking consciousness (Patisandi-Viññana) which arises in the next existence in the appropriate setting — the mother's womb. On the conjunction of these three factors, life starts in the mother's womb. There is no lapse of time, no stoppage of the unending stream of consciousness.
No sooner has the death-consciousness in the dying man passed away than rebirth consciousness arises in some other state of existence. There is nothing that has traveled from this life to the next. Even the terminal thought did not travel. It had the power to give rise to the passive or bhavanga state. At the moment of birth which marks a separate existence, through contact with the outer world, the unconscious or sub-conscious bhavanga state gives way to the vithi-citta or conscious mind.
------------------------------

In this view there is no gap in conditioned phenomena / there is ironclad and immediate DO during the death of an unenlightened person, so where can Nibanna be fit in? I couldn't find any support (In Theravada at least) for the idea that anyone besides enlightened beings can experience Nibanna at death, even temporarily. On what is that based?

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 4:22 AM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Milo:
dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


If the dukkha is stemmed from craving and ignorance, then where did craving and ignorance stem from? Would it be fair to assume that they stem from having this body form? Without a body, where would cravings araise from?

The Buddha only explicitly traced DO back to ignorance, but I think it's fair to say that ignorance would be inherited from past births. And since samsara is without beginning or end, you could regress that infinitely.

The DO chain has this order:
ignorance>>fabrications>>consciousness>>name and form>>six sense media>>contact>>feeling>>craving>>clinging>>becoming>>birth>>aging, sickness, stress, death, etc.

Cravings can arise from contact and feeling though any of the six sense media, even the purely mental sense.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 10:38 AM as a reply to Milo.
Milo:
John Not2:
Milo:
dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


If the dukkha is stemmed from craving and ignorance, then where did craving and ignorance stem from? Would it be fair to assume that they stem from having this body form? Without a body, where would cravings araise from?

The Buddha only explicitly traced DO back to ignorance, but I think it's fair to say that ignorance would be inherited from past births. And since samsara is without beginning or end, you could regress that infinitely.

The DO chain has this order:
ignorance>>fabrications>>consciousness>>name and form>>six sense media>>contact>>feeling>>craving>>clinging>>becoming>>birth>>aging, sickness, stress, death, etc.

Cravings can arise from contact and feeling though any of the six sense media, even the purely mental sense.
I consider Buddhist philosophy to be less dogmatic than most belief systems, but it too is full of holes, inconsistencies, dogmas, and superstitions, so I don't believe in anything Buddhism blindly, it is perfectly OK to be a "Buddhist" yet do not believe in anything said to be "Buddha says..." in fact, it is said that "Buddha says: don`t take my words for it, try it yourself, prove it before accepting it".  so when I read anything "Buddhism believes/says...", I just ignore them, they only introduce superstitions and confusions, nothing more.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 11:10 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:
@John Not2: your level of idealism shows a degree of dogmatic naivete that may be less helpful than you believe it to be. Your harshness to the psychological professions may also be unhelpful and divisive, as plenty benefit from the skills and perspectives they learn from interactions with people in the psychological professions. The notion that awakened beings have no fear at all of death also doesn't reality test well in practice. Further, your claim to be one of these beings is curious: care to back that up with specifics?

Thanks,

Daniel
Owner of the DhO
although I consider myself Buddhist and I practice Buddhist meditation, my initial awakening was from Advaita Vedanta self-inquiry process, the shift to dis-identifying with the physical body happened like a switch just got flipped, the effect is permanent and irreversible, it is not possible for me to be afraid of death after the transformation, I can only laugh at the absurdity of humans who know they absolutely will die and approximately when death will come to them (normally 70-ish to 80-ish, give or take some), and yet they have such illogical emotions about it.  I actually would love to leave this body here and now, but like I said, I am confused about this whole rebirth superstition that is part of the Buddhist beliefs, I don't like leaving with this  important question unanswered, so I hope to learn more about it before making my decision.  But, I am truly absolutely not afraid of dying, how do you propose that I can prove that to you? 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 11:24 AM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:

Thanks for your reply to Daniel.

May I also ask that you refrain from insulting the other posters here on DhO? Your recent behavior is concerning and has at times approached the point at which you could be locked out of the forum. You can certainly make your points and converse with everyone with respect and civility, right? I appreciate your practice and your metaphysical issues, but these do not condone rudeness, insults, and plain old nastiness.

Please take a look at the terms under which we all participate here --  https://www.dharmaoverground.org/home :

To help keep the place more inviting of participation by those who can benefit from helpful friends supporting friends in their practices and sharing the intimate and deep adventures that these explorations can produce, the following ground rules have been adopted:

  • No name-calling or ad hominem attacks
  • No on-and-on repetitious, angry rants that marshal no supporting evidence, target an interlocutor, and have the effect of intimidating the interlocutor.
  • No threats of violence, even if metaphorical or aimed at no one in particular
  • No taunting, mocking, or intimidation of an individual or a group on the basis of race/ethnicity, sex, disability (including mental illness), sexual orientation, religious preference, or spiritual practice
  • No speech acts that would be actionable under US criminal or civil tort law 
  • Don't post copyrighted material that you don't have the right or permission to post or distribute except snippets allowed under fair use.

The Moderators (contact info there) will warn and, as a second step ban posters who are absolutely not willing to respect these rules.

When in doubt, ask, "Is this helpful and conducive to clarity, wisdom, and the alleviation of suffering?"



Thanks for your help,

Chris Marti
DhO Moderator

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 11:45 AM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Milo:
John Not2:
Milo:
dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


If the dukkha is stemmed from craving and ignorance, then where did craving and ignorance stem from? Would it be fair to assume that they stem from having this body form? Without a body, where would cravings araise from?

The Buddha only explicitly traced DO back to ignorance, but I think it's fair to say that ignorance would be inherited from past births. And since samsara is without beginning or end, you could regress that infinitely.

The DO chain has this order:
ignorance>>fabrications>>consciousness>>name and form>>six sense media>>contact>>feeling>>craving>>clinging>>becoming>>birth>>aging, sickness, stress, death, etc.

Cravings can arise from contact and feeling though any of the six sense media, even the purely mental sense.
I consider Buddhist philosophy to be less dogmatic than most belief systems, but it too is full of holes, inconsistencies, dogmas, and superstitions, so I don't believe in anything Buddhism blindly, it is perfectly OK to be a "Buddhist" yet do not believe in anything said to be "Buddha says..." in fact, it is said that "Buddha says: don`t take my words for it, try it yourself, prove it before accepting it".  so when I read anything "Buddhism believes/says...", I just ignore them, they only introduce superstitions and confusions, nothing more.

Fortunate that you're a jhana practitioner then and can investigate and decide for yourself.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 12:13 PM as a reply to John Not2.
Dear John Not2,

Regarding the fear of death, I know something about it, having practiced emergency medicine for a while, and it is very easy to have an impression of how you might react to it until you actually get there, I believe. You might keep an open mind and see how your ideas about it work out.

I also know of numerous reports from well-respected senior meditation teachers who were dying and said it surprised them with how difficult it could be, something they didn't anticipate until they were up against it. I have also personally seen patients that I could barely have imagined going to their death with a very high degree of equanimity and acceptance do so easily. Obviously, deaths come in many flavors, so I hope yours, however it happens, is one of the more palatable ones.

I have unfortunately gotten to witness some very ugly, extremely painful, terrifying deaths, and few to none handle those well when they occur. May you avoid such a death, but, if one comes to you, may your insight prove up to the task.

As a related curiosity, how do you handle pain since whatever happened happened?

Regarding rebirth, it is a paradox created by a illusion of there being a stable, continuous, coherent, independent self, as well as the illusion of there actually being a future and a past, as well as the illusion of there being any truly existing thing or even realm to be born into. There are levels of insight that see through this illusion to various degrees.

From a far more relative point of view, it would seem reasonable that, as it appears we were all born, there was some reason why we were born as we are, that what appears to be this spark of consciousness is in or associated with this body. If it still troubles you in some way, you could consider that perhaps there are levels of insight yet to attain, and experiences regarding rebirth that you could yet have that might appear to shed some direct experiential light on it and give a more insightful relationship to the question.

Best wishes,

Daniel

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 12:19 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
John Not2:

Thanks for your reply to Daniel.

May I also ask that you refrain from insulting the other posters here on DhO? Your recent behavior is concerning and has at times approached the point at which you could be locked out of the forum. You can certainly make your points and converse with everyone with respect and civility, right? I appreciate your practice and your metaphysical issues, but these do not condone rudeness, insults, and plain old nastiness.

Please take a look at the terms under which we all participate here --  https://www.dharmaoverground.org/home :

To help keep the place more inviting of participation by those who can benefit from helpful friends supporting friends in their practices and sharing the intimate and deep adventures that these explorations can produce, the following ground rules have been adopted:

  • No name-calling or ad hominem attacks
  • No on-and-on repetitious, angry rants that marshal no supporting evidence, target an interlocutor, and have the effect of intimidating the interlocutor.
  • No threats of violence, even if metaphorical or aimed at no one in particular
  • No taunting, mocking, or intimidation of an individual or a group on the basis of race/ethnicity, sex, disability (including mental illness), sexual orientation, religious preference, or spiritual practice
  • No speech acts that would be actionable under US criminal or civil tort law 
  • Don't post copyrighted material that you don't have the right or permission to post or distribute except snippets allowed under fair use.

The Moderators (contact info there) will warn and, as a second step ban posters who are absolutely not willing to respect these rules.

When in doubt, ask, "Is this helpful and conducive to clarity, wisdom, and the alleviation of suffering?"



Thanks for your help,

Chris Marti
DhO Moderator
with due respect, I only fought back harshly when those disrespectful so-called psychological professionals insulted me with toxic waste languages of mental illness, anxiety, and depression.  they (may be you too) have such arrogance and prejudice to believe that their beliefs system (western science) is the only truth and we should all be classified according to one belief system, this is totally insensitive and ignorant! When I hear those toxic waste language and observed that kind of ignorant arrogant attitudes, I am insulted, I can choose to be quiet and accept the insults, or fight back and risk being locked out or kicked out from dharma forum, I choose the latter.

please review the sequence of the posts to see if what I said above is based on objective facts.  if you still believe that so-called psychological professionals have absolute rights to attack and insult anyone using toxic languages (it may not be toxic to them to use those languages, but it is to the victims, it is to me!), and if I defend myself against their insults and attacks I shall be kicked out, then I really don't know what else to say, it is a forum in the west run by westerners with beliefs that that science is the only absolute truth and it is ok to insult those who do not believe in such believe system, it is what it is.  saying what I had said is likely more than enough to earn me multiple psychological and mental disorder diagnoses already, I can hear them cheering and making grinning faces.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 1:07 PM as a reply to John Not2.
if you still believe that so-called psychological professionals have absolute rights to attack and insult anyone using toxic languages (it may not be toxic to them to use those languages, but it is to the victims, it is to me!), and if I defend myself against their insults and attacks I shall be kicked out, then I really don't know what else to say, it is a forum in the west run by westerners with beliefs that that science is the only absolute truth and it is ok to insult those who do not believe in such believe system, it is what it is.

I've read this entire topic all along. I just re-read it all again. The folks who have responded to you have used language that is in common use here on DhO and elsewhere. You are the only person who considers those terms insulting. Those posters are not challenging you to do anything but have a discussion. You respond with name-calling.

You can be respectful, so please do so. This is your last warning. 

Chris Marti
DhO Moderator


RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 1:10 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:
Dear John Not2,

Regarding the fear of death, I know something about it, having practiced emergency medicine for a while, and it is very easy to have an impression of how you might react to it until you actually get there, I believe. You might keep an open mind and see how your ideas about it work out.

I also know of numerous reports from well-respected senior meditation teachers who were dying and said it surprised them with how difficult it could be, something they didn't anticipate until they were up against it. I have also personally seen patients that I could barely have imagined going to their death with a very high degree of equanimity and acceptance do so easily. Obviously, deaths come in many flavors, so I hope yours, however it happens, is one of the more palatable ones.

I have unfortunately gotten to witness some very ugly, extremely painful, terrifying deaths, and few to none handle those well when they occur. May you avoid such a death, but, if one comes to you, may your insight prove up to the task.

As a related curiosity, how do you handle pain since whatever happened happened?

Regarding rebirth, it is a paradox created by a illusion of there being a stable, continuous, coherent, independent self, as well as the illusion of there actually being a future and a past, as well as the illusion of there being any truly existing thing or even realm to be born into. There are levels of insight that see through this illusion to various degrees.

From a far more relative point of view, it would seem reasonable that, as it appears we were all born, there was some reason why we were born as we are, that what appears to be this spark of consciousness is in or associated with this body. If it still troubles you in some way, you could consider that perhaps there are levels of insight yet to attain, and experiences regarding rebirth that you could yet have that might appear to shed some direct experiential light on it and give a more insightful relationship to the question.

Best wishes,

Daniel
I am grateful for your kind words/wisdom, thank you!

regarding pains, I dislike and am fearful of physical pains, I do everything possible to avoid them, I would gladly choose death over pain.  emotional pains were even harder for me to deal with, but when I woke up from identifying with my physical body as "I",  all emotional pains vanished and they had never returned since, physical pains didn't go away with my awakening.

I practice Buddhist meditation because I had seen proofs that advanced meditators can disengage their "self" from the physical body: the black and white video footages of Vietnamese monks poured gasoline on their bodies then set them on fire, throughout the entire time being burnt to death, their bodies remained still, they were burnt alive but in deep meditation states they were in, they were able to disengage the non-physical self from the physical body, they appeared not feeling any pain while they got burnt alive.  I am aiming to attain that level of meditative state.

regarding rebirth, I think it is more complicated than what we are capable to understand at this point, I am sure you know about dr. Ian Stevenson's research, it is difficult for me to write him off as an ignorant, a fraud, or as superstitions, he has over 40 years of research data to at least show that there are strange phenomenons suggest that we can`t just write off rebirth as superstitions. 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 1:14 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:


Regarding rebirth, it is a paradox created by a illusion of there being a stable, continuous, coherent, independent self, as well as the illusion of there actually being a future and a past, as well as the illusion of there being any truly existing thing or even realm to be born into. There are levels of insight that see through this illusion to various degrees.

Daniel

Care to expand on this one, that past and future are an illusion and how one might realize that through meditating versus say, studying Quantum physics (I do know that there are some physics theories that report this finding, but I don't know if you mean the same thing as them)?

Like what do you mean by that exactly? For example, do you not believe dinosaurs lived in the past? Or if there is no future, what happens tomorrow? I assume you mean something more esoteric...

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 1:20 PM as a reply to Jinxed P.
... that past and future are an illusion and how one might realize that through meditating...

I'm certain Daniel will have an answer for you but if I may offer you this -- meditation can lead to the insight that both space and time are constructed by the mind. It would appear that we need to be able to compare the objects, the things we perceive, in specific ways so that we can navigate the world we find ourselves in. So by constructing space the mind can distinguish things like distance, nearness, location, and so on. By constructing time the mind can distinguish things like past, present, and future, allowing us to put our experiences on a spectrum. These two insights came to me while in a deep meditative state one morning while laying in bed and noting the perceptions that were driving my perception of where I was, and when.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 3:27 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
if you still believe that so-called psychological professionals have absolute rights to attack and insult anyone using toxic languages (it may not be toxic to them to use those languages, but it is to the victims, it is to me!), and if I defend myself against their insults and attacks I shall be kicked out, then I really don't know what else to say, it is a forum in the west run by westerners with beliefs that that science is the only absolute truth and it is ok to insult those who do not believe in such believe system, it is what it is.

I've read this entire topic all along. I just re-read it all again. The folks who have responded to you have used language that is in common use here on DhO and elsewhere. You are the only person who considers those terms insulting. Those posters are not challenging you to do anything but have a discussion. You respond with name-calling.

You can be respectful, so please do so. This is your last warning. 

Chris Marti
DhO Moderator

I consider using the words anxiety, depression, mental illness toxic, insulting, and judgemental, I do not buy into the western belief system, therefore I believe that subjecting me to these derogatory western terms a great insult, at the very least, it shows great arrogance, ignorant, and insensitiveness, of so-called western psychological professionals.  the logic of since "no one here objects the use of these terms they must be absolutely right" is a very poor one, you are an intelligent man, you know that is not a tight, valid logic of argumentation/reasoning.

During WWII, Jews were sent to death camps to be slaughtered and the majority of Germans did not object that, but that doesn't mean it was right and just to do so, if using your logic, such action would had been just since the majority agreed with such action.

also, it is like using the word Nigger in an office environment with 50 white employees and just one black, when the black employee fights back they all complained, so the boss tell him: look, this is how we talk here, no one used that word on purpose to challenge you, no one except you have problem with using the word Nigger, I don't see any problem using the word here and I won't tell my employees to stop using it, you must act nicely and no more fighting back or I will fire you, this is the last warning.  (this actually happened)

once upon a time, the word Nigger was widely used in conversations and in writing in this country, and no one seemed to object that, until enough black American voiced against it, i.e. fighting back: that word hurts! it is an insult using that word in any situation, way, form!

today, western psychological professionals call, label, classify, discriminate, people having specific human experience mentally ill, suffering from anxiety and depression, that's far worse than just the mere name-calling, that's prejudice, insulting, abuse, and unfair discrimination against people with different beliefs, culture, and religion!  some (but not all) of these so-called mental illness experience are actually spiritual experience.  debating the merits and pitfalls of suicide is not an indication of any "mental illness".  Buddha would most likely be diagnosed mentally ill if he walks into a western hospital today.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 4:10 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris,

I appreciate your thoughtfulness in choosing the term "metaphysical issues" instead of the "common" derogatory wordings of "mental issues", or "psychological issues", or mental illness, anxiety, and depression.

But, I respectfully request that you remove the word "issues" and replace it with something neutral like "opinions", "ideas", "thoughts", or "contemplations", you are unconsciously judging me, labeling me, and looking down on me by categorizing me as having some sort of "issues".  in your subconscious mind, anyone who has behaviors inconsistent with what you believed to be the "normal behaviors", such as debating on the subject of suicide, feeling hurt by words of mental illness, anxiety, and depression, disagreeing with the majority beliefs, he/she must be having some "problems/illness/issues", and since he is objecting to the use of terms of mental issues or psychological issues, I will use a clever term 
"metaphysical issues" so that I say the same thing without being called out for being prejudice or insensitive (deep down, you believe in that this man has mental/psychological issues/problems/illness, you and I both know it, no point of denying that).  Although this is an improvement, it is still an insult to me, and it still hurts.  I am sure you don't mean to hurt anyone, but I am telling you, this kind of language, behavior, attitude, HURTS!

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/11/19 5:04 PM as a reply to John Not2.
This isn't a debate or a game, John Not2. It's about your treatment of others on the DhO, which has only been reinforced by your last several comments. You've been locked out.

Chris Marti
DhO Moderator

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/13/19 2:11 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Milo:
So what are you actually concerned with here - physical suffering, or the much more broad dukkha (Not equivalent as others have mentioned)? From a Buddhist perspective, from which this forum heavily takes inspiration at least, dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


The concern is: why is that suicide is considered "wrong"? that's all, really!

The body is just a form, what's the big deal of detaching from this impermanent body form via the method of suicide?  Who is benefiting from stopping others from detaching themselves from their impermanent body form?

aloha,

   A number of posts on this thread have asked about the relationship between body and mind. John here states, "the body is just a form." 

   The body is "form," the mind is "emptiness" - and "form is emptiness, emptiness is form."

   We look "out" at the world, and we see "form." We can see the bodies of ourselves and others, to all appearances solid and "real." We can touch, taste, feel, smell, see and think about bodies. We can observe bodies be born, suffer and die. This is form. We look "in" and we understand that thoughts and perceptions are occurring within the mind, the emptiness in which all forms have their being. Without mind there would be no perception. Without form there would be nothing to perceive.

   The duality of mind and body is actually a spectrum, a continuum. Every "thing" we distinguish from the matrix is cognized by the thinking mind with a name. The namer/knower can not be distinguished from the named/known: the one cannot exist without the other. Every object has spiritual and material senses: it is exoteric and esoteric. A baseball is a horsehide spheroid, and a game piece.  A galaxy is a collection of physical processes, and a perceptual clump, a whirligig. All of history, the whole panoply of humankind, is but a child building sandcastles along the seashore (heraclitus).

   Thus the subject/object dichotomy totally taken for granted by the scientistic worldview westerners share by default and use to communicate with is false on its face and distorts everything it discusses. In our so serious professional adulthood we have lost the simple direct vision of the child or "idiot" who identifies with all that is seen, in total sympathy, in love that has no name. As wordsworth said - I would love to post the poem but it is perhaps too long -

"Thanks to the human heart by which we live,
Thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears,
To me the meanest flower that blows can give
Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears."

   In this case - so far is the body lost to us that we consider suicide "reasonable" - we unconsciously assume there is a subject which "has" a body. From this standpoint it seems reasonable that the body can be dispensed with and consciousness retained. As though form was not emptiness and emptiness was not form.

   Even from reason the contention is absurd: reasoning ends when the body ends. What drives the discussion is suffering, and the end of suffering, the first and third nt's. The 2nd nt is ignored and the 4th rendered moot. Just, recognize suffering and end it. One fell swoop.

   Let's consider the actual relationship between body and mind, the identity, the nonduality. Body and mind are two ends of a polarity, the physical and the mental, the material and the spiritual. The world as we see it is not a metaphor, not an allegory, but it is symbolic. The world as we see it seems real, but it is a dream, a magic trick. People here speak of arising and passing away and I don't know what they mean. But what we see is actually arising and passing away every moment. We never step in the same river twice: as was recently pointed out (mahalo), we are not the same person two moments running, so wherever we step the world is new. The past we cling to so strongly is gone, gone, way gone. Outahere. We are reborn every moment; even continuity is discontinuous. I look at maui across the water, an island, a mountain, a dormant volcano (haleakala - "the house of the sun"  - smokes once in a great while). It rose as a volcano and it steadily erodes in the wind, rain and sea, changing all the time. Living cells, the epitome of change, have been around three billion years, making maui seem quite ephemeral.

   The dhammapada (trans buddharakkhita - thanissaro translates "mind" as "heart") tells us:

1. Mind precedes all mental states. Mind is their chief; they are all mind-wrought. If with an impure mind a person speaks or acts suffering follows him like the wheel that follows the foot of the ox.

2. Mind precedes all mental states. Mind is their chief; they are all mind-wrought. If with a pure mind a person speaks or acts happiness follows him like his never-departing shadow.

The dhammapada seems to make the same error, seeing the subject now as mind rather than body, dualistically. The body - actually the whole material world - is seen as a subset of mind. Again, the error which would allow for the idea of a disembodied consciousness is prefigured. The error comes about from seeing "the body" - the "person" - as separate from the "world." The truth is that the body is not separate from the world, but continuous. Actually, "the world" is our true body. The whole universe, beyond that the throne of god, and beyond that god himself - all are your mind. Buddha = Mind. Form is emptiness. At the same time - nondually - emptiness is form. The body grows and develops, and mind grows with it. Mind is renewed, reborn, with every organism that arises, every cell newly created. Each individual creature, each sentient being (every cell), creates the universe, and knows it. Even the rocks have eyes, and throats. Everything in the universe is organic, it is Our Mind. We see without what we are within. Whatever the world may be "in itself," we see what is revealed to us. Whatever else may "be" cannot be cognized and does not matter. Doesn't ex-ist.

   This mind, this Mind, is not our own personally and exclusively. The names of all things were taught to "adam" by god. The world as we know it, which is to say "the world" in its entirety - for we cannot imagine what we cannot imagine - is adam's heritage, humanity's; life's. There is no private language, we learn the world from mom and dad, from our sibs, from neighbors and strangers. We hold it in common, we all conform to each others perceptions in word and deed, as actors and subjects. But the "play" and the actors are all figments of sentience, of imagination. As is our body, the bodies of "others" and the world itself.

   This world has no real stability. We see one world when we are little, it changes as we grow, and seems to relatively stabilize in maturity, but still is impermanent and constantly in flux. "Once a man and twice a child" as bob marley says. The persistence of life through the generations give us a sense of "the world's" continuity, just as the relative stability of maui's shape persists through our lifetimes and so seems solid and real, compared to a thought or a feeling. But "the world" is perceptual and conditioned. If we degrade our environment, we think we are "destroying the world" because we are destroying "our" world. In truth we cannot damage the universe with our tiny fumblings on our third rate star's third (and not greatest) planet. Even if we nuke it to rubble, the universe will roll on unmoved. Perfect.

   So... the individual human shares a world created by the collective human intelligence as mediated through language, though names. The biological human who perceives without words a direct animalistic engagement with ingestion, elimination and reproduction is of little consequence to "us" as we are social creatures identified with mind. The body, in fact, may be readily sacrificed for an idea. I was just listening to j krishnamurti last night saying that all faith leads to violence. One may easily see that lopping off an arm, leg or penis may change our thoughts and feelings but we still identify with self, with our mind, and body parts are often more dispensable than beliefs. Yet without the body, there is no mind, and when the body decays, or is damaged, the mind also decays, or is damaged.

   Thus, the body is a product of mind, and the mind is a product of the body. This is not even an integration: they are one thing regarded under different aspects. We as individual humans are body minds, and our collective linguistic map is a body-mind production. The body has no real individual identity; like a worm, slug or dung beetle, we are just the latest generation of a very common species, insignificant in our individual selves but part of a mighty collective, as a leaf is part of a tree.

   In the end, my friends, only the ego is concerned with its place in the world. Those of us (monkey people, crazies, idiots) who live here as natural denizens are content to simply be. The ego should just go ahead and commit suicide right away and we may rest in peace.


terry


from william blake, 'the marriage of heaven and hell'


 
The Voice of the Devil


  All Bibles or sacred codes have been the causes of the following Errors:—      

  1. That Man has two real existing principles, viz. a Body and a Soul.      
  2. That Energy, call’d Evil, is alone from the Body; and that Reason, call’d Good, is alone from the Soul.      
  3. That God will torment Man in Eternity for following his Energies.      

  But the following Contraries to these are True:—      

  1. Man has no Body distinct from his Soul; for that call’d Body is a portion of Soul discern’d by the five Senses, the chief inlets of Soul in this age.      
  2. Energy is the only life, and is from the Body; and Reason is the bound or outward circumference of Energy.      
  3. Energy is Eternal Delight.      

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/13/19 2:39 PM as a reply to lotb.
lotb:
terry:
lotb:
John Not2:
lotb:
John,

I'm confused as to whether or not you appreciate (early?) Buddhism or not, given how rebirth factors in. If you don't believe in rebirth, then there's no reason to value Buddhism, right? 

It seems that generally speaking nothing people are saying in response is landing in a useful way.

You ask, what is the preference of living versus suicide? It seems like nothing will convince you that life is superior to death. Perhaps then, in a certain light it isn't, as others have indicated that it's a feature of our biology and that our preferring it is dualistic in a sense. Death is a part of life, and therefore suicide is as well. There are those who have no other choice, and I do hope that their suffering truly does end when they do it. 
 
A long time ago, someone integral to a community I'm in killed themselves. People were devasted, hurt, angry, etc. Their act reminded me of the preciousness of life, and how beautiful theirs was. I felt a lot of compassion for them and continue to remember them fondly. It definitely had me thinking, as I could appreciate the challenges they faced. Whether it was right or wrong, it wasn't up for me to decide, and I never felt compelled to judge the act.  Above all, meeting and knowing them was important, valuable.

Actually, you have answered your own questions: death is part of life, there should not be bias against death and preferring life, therefore condemning suicide is really a groundless, illogical mind-programming/superstition, think about it!

The questions weren't for my own clarification but to understand where you're coming from, which you have cleared up in subsequent responses. 

Asking again: do you value Buddhism despite rebirth? 


   Rebirth is not a deal breaker. Besides, buddhists always equivocate. The ego is not reborn, that is sure. What is reborn, if not a self, personality, soul or liver-of-life? We know these are all truly non-self. One's karma is supposed to be reborn. I really can't see how that matters to "me."
  
  I think everyone is the same one, and that one is reborn all the time. 

   I value buddhism for the brahmaviharas, for the 4nt's, for nirvana, and (mostly) for zen.

   As for "stream entry," come on in, the water's fine. Don't wait until your next life.


terry
Terry,

Your sentiment regarding karma and how that would matter to "me" rings true.
One's karma is supposed to be reborn. I really can't see how that matters to "me."
To whom does it matter to then?

And yes, I agree that there's no need to wait for stream-entry. However rebirth shakes out I'm happy with the fruits of practice in this life.

Side note: I deeply appreciate your contributions on DhO – thank you.

(bows)


aloha lotb,

   It matters to god. For that reason I am deeply concerned with my karma. Our karma. Not so that I personally can "be reborn" in the realm of the gods, but so that all of humanity may evolve into god's promise. So to speak.

   In buddhist terms, once non-self is realized, we have a different relationship to self-karma. The guru or master or buddha ancestor dissolves karma by dissolving attachment to self. People like to imagine that if they were "enlightened" they could do anything they want, whereas it is perhaps more like non-doing creating no-karma.  To non-self, it simply doesn't matter if it is "your" karma or "my" karma. It all needs to be worked out if we are to evolve.

   I long for a Day when there is no karma. The lion will lay down with the lamb, we won't study war any more, and they will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain.

terry




from the gateless gate


Hyakujo's Fox

Once when Hyakujo delivered some Zen lectures an old man attended them, unseen by the monks. At the end of each talk when the monks left so did he. But one day he remained after they had gone, and Hyakujo asked him: `Who are you?'

The old man replied: `I am not a human being, but I was a human being when the Kashapa Buddha preached in this world. I was a Zen master and lived on this mountain. At that time one of my students asked me whether the enlightened man is subject to the law of causation. I answered him: "The enlightened man is not subject to the law of causation." For this answer evidencing a clinging to absoluteness I became a fox for five hundred rebirths, and I am still a fox. Will you save me from this condition with your Zen words and let me get out of a fox's body? Now may I ask you: Is the enlightened man subject to the law of causation?'

Hyakujo said: `The enlightened man is one with the law of causation.'

At the words of Hyakujo the old man was enlightened. `I am emancipated,' he said, paying homage with a deep bow. `I am no more a fox, but I have to leave my body in my dwelling place behind this mountain. Please perform my funeral as a monk.' Then he disappeared.

The next day Hyakujo gave an order through the chief monk to prepare to attend the funeral of a monk. `No one was sick in the infirmary,' wondered the monks. `What does our teacher mean?'

After dinner Hyakujo led the monks out and around the mountain. In a cave, with his staff he poked out the corpse of an old fox and then performed the ceremony of cremation.

That evening Hyakujo gave a talk to the monks and told this story about the law of causation.

Obaku, upon hearing this story, asked Hyakujo: `I understand that a long time ago because a certain person gave a wrong Zen answer he became a fox for five hundred rebirths. Now I was to ask: If some modern master is asked many questions, and he always gives the right answer, what will become of him?'

Hyakujo said: `You come here near me and I will tell you.'

Obaku went near Hyakujo and slapped the teacher's face with this hand, for he knew this was the answer his teacher intended to give him.

Hyakujo clapped his hands and laughed at the discernment. `I thought a Persian had a red beard,' he said, `and now I know a Persian who has a red beard.'


Mumon's comment: `The enlightened man is not subject.' How can this answer make the monk a fox?

`The enlightened man is at one with the law of causation.' How can this answer make the fox emancipated?

To understand clearly one has to have just one eye.

Controlled or not controlled?
The same dice shows two faces.
Not controlled or controlled,
Both are a grievous error.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/13/19 3:10 PM as a reply to terry.
terry:
John Not2:
Milo:
So what are you actually concerned with here - physical suffering, or the much more broad dukkha (Not equivalent as others have mentioned)? From a Buddhist perspective, from which this forum heavily takes inspiration at least, dukkha ultimately stems from craving and ignorance, which would not be extinguished with disembodiment.


The concern is: why is that suicide is considered "wrong"? that's all, really!

The body is just a form, what's the big deal of detaching from this impermanent body form via the method of suicide?  Who is benefiting from stopping others from detaching themselves from their impermanent body form?

aloha,

   A number of posts on this thread have asked about the relationship between body and mind. John here states, "the body is just a form." 

   The body is "form," the mind is "emptiness" - and "form is emptiness, emptiness is form."

   We look "out" at the world, and we see "form." We can see the bodies of ourselves and others, to all appearances solid and "real." We can touch, taste, feel, smell, see and think about bodies. We can observe bodies be born, suffer and die. This is form. We look "in" and we understand that thoughts and perceptions are occurring within the mind, the emptiness in which all forms have their being. Without mind there would be no perception. Without form there would be nothing to perceive.

   The duality of mind and body is actually a spectrum, a continuum. Every "thing" we distinguish from the matrix is cognized by the thinking mind with a name. The namer/knower can not be distinguished from the named/known: the one cannot exist without the other. Every object has spiritual and material senses: it is exoteric and esoteric. A baseball is a horsehide spheroid, and a game piece.  A galaxy is a collection of physical processes, and a perceptual clump, a whirligig. All of history, the whole panoply of humankind, is but a child building sandcastles along the seashore (heraclitus).

   Thus the subject/object dichotomy totally taken for granted by the scientistic worldview westerners share by default and use to communicate with is false on its face and distorts everything it discusses. In our so serious professional adulthood we have lost the simple direct vision of the child or "idiot" who identifies with all that is seen, in total sympathy, in love that has no name. As wordsworth said - I would love to post the poem but it is perhaps too long -

"Thanks to the human heart by which we live,
Thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears,
To me the meanest flower that blows can give
Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears."

   In this case - so far is the body lost to us that we consider suicide "reasonable" - we unconsciously assume there is a subject which "has" a body. From this standpoint it seems reasonable that the body can be dispensed with and consciousness retained. As though form was not emptiness and emptiness was not form.

   Even from reason the contention is absurd: reasoning ends when the body ends. What drives the discussion is suffering, and the end of suffering, the first and third nt's. The 2nd nt is ignored and the 4th rendered moot. Just, recognize suffering and end it. One fell swoop.

   Let's consider the actual relationship between body and mind, the identity, the nonduality. Body and mind are two ends of a polarity, the physical and the mental, the material and the spiritual. The world as we see it is not a metaphor, not an allegory, but it is symbolic. The world as we see it seems real, but it is a dream, a magic trick. People here speak of arising and passing away and I don't know what they mean. But what we see is actually arising and passing away every moment. We never step in the same river twice: as was recently pointed out (mahalo), we are not the same person two moments running, so wherever we step the world is new. The past we cling to so strongly is gone, gone, way gone. Outahere. We are reborn every moment; even continuity is discontinuous. I look at maui across the water, an island, a mountain, a dormant volcano (haleakala - "the house of the sun"  - smokes once in a great while). It rose as a volcano and it steadily erodes in the wind, rain and sea, changing all the time. Living cells, the epitome of change, have been around three billion years, making maui seem quite ephemeral.

   The dhammapada (trans buddharakkhita - thanissaro translates "mind" as "heart") tells us:

1. Mind precedes all mental states. Mind is their chief; they are all mind-wrought. If with an impure mind a person speaks or acts suffering follows him like the wheel that follows the foot of the ox.

2. Mind precedes all mental states. Mind is their chief; they are all mind-wrought. If with a pure mind a person speaks or acts happiness follows him like his never-departing shadow.

The dhammapada seems to make the same error, seeing the subject now as mind rather than body, dualistically. The body - actually the whole material world - is seen as a subset of mind. Again, the error which would allow for the idea of a disembodied consciousness is prefigured. The error comes about from seeing "the body" - the "person" - as separate from the "world." The truth is that the body is not separate from the world, but continuous. Actually, "the world" is our true body. The whole universe, beyond that the throne of god, and beyond that god himself - all are your mind. Buddha = Mind. Form is emptiness. At the same time - nondually - emptiness is form. The body grows and develops, and mind grows with it. Mind is renewed, reborn, with every organism that arises, every cell newly created. Each individual creature, each sentient being (every cell), creates the universe, and knows it. Even the rocks have eyes, and throats. Everything in the universe is organic, it is Our Mind. We see without what we are within. Whatever the world may be "in itself," we see what is revealed to us. Whatever else may "be" cannot be cognized and does not matter. Doesn't ex-ist.

   This mind, this Mind, is not our own personally and exclusively. The names of all things were taught to "adam" by god. The world as we know it, which is to say "the world" in its entirety - for we cannot imagine what we cannot imagine - is adam's heritage, humanity's; life's. There is no private language, we learn the world from mom and dad, from our sibs, from neighbors and strangers. We hold it in common, we all conform to each others perceptions in word and deed, as actors and subjects. But the "play" and the actors are all figments of sentience, of imagination. As is our body, the bodies of "others" and the world itself.

   This world has no real stability. We see one world when we are little, it changes as we grow, and seems to relatively stabilize in maturity, but still is impermanent and constantly in flux. "Once a man and twice a child" as bob marley says. The persistence of life through the generations give us a sense of "the world's" continuity, just as the relative stability of maui's shape persists through our lifetimes and so seems solid and real, compared to a thought or a feeling. But "the world" is perceptual and conditioned. If we degrade our environment, we think we are "destroying the world" because we are destroying "our" world. In truth we cannot damage the universe with our tiny fumblings on our third rate star's third (and not greatest) planet. Even if we nuke it to rubble, the universe will roll on unmoved. Perfect.

   So... the individual human shares a world created by the collective human intelligence as mediated through language, though names. The biological human who perceives without words a direct animalistic engagement with ingestion, elimination and reproduction is of little consequence to "us" as we are social creatures identified with mind. The body, in fact, may be readily sacrificed for an idea. I was just listening to j krishnamurti last night saying that all faith leads to violence. One may easily see that lopping off an arm, leg or penis may change our thoughts and feelings but we still identify with self, with our mind, and body parts are often more dispensable than beliefs. Yet without the body, there is no mind, and when the body decays, or is damaged, the mind also decays, or is damaged.

   Thus, the body is a product of mind, and the mind is a product of the body. This is not even an integration: they are one thing regarded under different aspects. We as individual humans are body minds, and our collective linguistic map is a body-mind production. The body has no real individual identity; like a worm, slug or dung beetle, we are just the latest generation of a very common species, insignificant in our individual selves but part of a mighty collective, as a leaf is part of a tree.

   In the end, my friends, only the ego is concerned with its place in the world. Those of us (monkey people, crazies, idiots) who live here as natural denizens are content to simply be. The ego should just go ahead and commit suicide right away and we may rest in peace.


terry


from william blake, 'the marriage of heaven and hell'


 
The Voice of the Devil


  All Bibles or sacred codes have been the causes of the following Errors:—      

  1. That Man has two real existing principles, viz. a Body and a Soul.      
  2. That Energy, call’d Evil, is alone from the Body; and that Reason, call’d Good, is alone from the Soul.      
  3. That God will torment Man in Eternity for following his Energies.      

  But the following Contraries to these are True:—      

  1. Man has no Body distinct from his Soul; for that call’d Body is a portion of Soul discern’d by the five Senses, the chief inlets of Soul in this age.      
  2. Energy is the only life, and is from the Body; and Reason is the bound or outward circumference of Energy.      
  3. Energy is Eternal Delight.      


Beautiful!

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/13/19 3:20 PM as a reply to terry.
About karma: I share the deep concern about karma not in spite of it not having to do anything with me after I’m gone, but because of that. If I could be sure that my karma would affect me specifically, then I might as well postpone dealing with it. The idea of some totally innocent child being stuck with my karma, on the other hand, makes the matter more urgent.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/13/19 3:21 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Jinxed P:
John Not2:
Terry, 

exactly, but you see how wrong those shrinks are: they misled people to seek "pleasurable things" while labeling others for having symptoms of anxiety and depression and mental illness?  those goddamn shrinks should be banned from this planet!


1.Do you think anxiety exists?

2. Do you believe that people feel fear, their heart rates elevate, they worry, they sweat? That's anxiety. Do you admit that people have anxiety?

3. Do you admit some people have more anxiety than others?

4. Do you admit that some people have anxiety so bad that it interferes with their ability to function in normal situations. Such as they may have agoraphobia and are afraid to leave the house, or ride in elevators?

When someone has these anxious feelings, to a large degree, to a point where it hinders quality of life dramatically, what do you call it? ... Hint..It's called "An anxiety disorder"

If you believe in these things, and I can't see how you couldn't... you believe anxiety disorders exist..
I could do the same thing for depression, but you get the point. 

I wasn't going to respond, but for other people sake, I decided to respond:

Not all people are the same, many advanced meditators are free from identifying themselves with the physical bodies, sensations, feelings, emotions, mind, superstitions, and all limiting beliefs; we are not afraid of death, we are not attached to the false self, we are not afraid of utilizing the suicide exiting approach to leave the physical body, we welcome and celebrate death, and/or life, for they are the one and the same.  We understand that death is a certainty for humans (and all living beings), therefore having anxiety about death is absurd! (it's absurd because no matter how you try to escape death, you can't!)  Having depression about death is absurd!  Only humans have such absurd emotions, but not all humans have such absurd emotions, therefore, it is very wrong for you shrinks to dump your toxic waste to all people by assuming that we humans are all the same, we are not!  Just because you and your shrinks are not liberated, not enlightened, doesn't mean others are also low lives like you.  Again, you shrinks are incapable to understand this message, but I am writing this for the sake of normal people, to let them know that shrinks are low lives and to stay away from shrinks.

being without anxiety is overrated...

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/13/19 3:46 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:
Dear John Not2,

Regarding the fear of death, I know something about it, having practiced emergency medicine for a while, and it is very easy to have an impression of how you might react to it until you actually get there, I believe. You might keep an open mind and see how your ideas about it work out.

I also know of numerous reports from well-respected senior meditation teachers who were dying and said it surprised them with how difficult it could be, something they didn't anticipate until they were up against it. I have also personally seen patients that I could barely have imagined going to their death with a very high degree of equanimity and acceptance do so easily. Obviously, deaths come in many flavors, so I hope yours, however it happens, is one of the more palatable ones.

I have unfortunately gotten to witness some very ugly, extremely painful, terrifying deaths, and few to none handle those well when they occur. May you avoid such a death, but, if one comes to you, may your insight prove up to the task.



Daniel
aloha dan,

   I might also have mentioned that in my experience (decades working in hospitals) most deaths are not painless and easy. Suicides in particular. When someone shoots themselves in the head, you know they had mental problems. When a young, healthy body shoots itself in the chest, our hearts break too. When a child commits suicide we all die some. Watching a child gasp out its life from an asthmatic attack driven by panic is very hard. And so on and on.

   On the other hand, attending a birth is surprisingly uplifting and cheers everyone up. 

terry


Holy Sonnet #10
(john donne)

Death, be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou are not so;
For those whom thou think’st thou dost overthrow
Die not, poor Death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleep, which but thy pictures be,
Much pleasure; then from thee much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee do go,
Rest of their bones, and soul’s delivery.
Thou’art slave to fate, chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell,
And poppy’or charms can make us sleep as well
And better than thy stroke; why swell’st thou then?
One short sleep past, we wake eternally,

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/13/19 3:50 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Chris Marti:
John Not2:

Thanks for your reply to Daniel.

May I also ask that you refrain from insulting the other posters here on DhO? Your recent behavior is concerning and has at times approached the point at which you could be locked out of the forum. You can certainly make your points and converse with everyone with respect and civility, right? I appreciate your practice and your metaphysical issues, but these do not condone rudeness, insults, and plain old nastiness.

Please take a look at the terms under which we all participate here --  https://www.dharmaoverground.org/home :

To help keep the place more inviting of participation by those who can benefit from helpful friends supporting friends in their practices and sharing the intimate and deep adventures that these explorations can produce, the following ground rules have been adopted:

  • No name-calling or ad hominem attacks
  • No on-and-on repetitious, angry rants that marshal no supporting evidence, target an interlocutor, and have the effect of intimidating the interlocutor.
  • No threats of violence, even if metaphorical or aimed at no one in particular
  • No taunting, mocking, or intimidation of an individual or a group on the basis of race/ethnicity, sex, disability (including mental illness), sexual orientation, religious preference, or spiritual practice
  • No speech acts that would be actionable under US criminal or civil tort law 
  • Don't post copyrighted material that you don't have the right or permission to post or distribute except snippets allowed under fair use.

The Moderators (contact info there) will warn and, as a second step ban posters who are absolutely not willing to respect these rules.

When in doubt, ask, "Is this helpful and conducive to clarity, wisdom, and the alleviation of suffering?"



Thanks for your help,

Chris Marti
DhO Moderator
with due respect, I only fought back harshly when those disrespectful so-called psychological professionals insulted me with toxic waste languages of mental illness, anxiety, and depression.  they (may be you too) have such arrogance and prejudice to believe that their beliefs system (western science) is the only truth and we should all be classified according to one belief system, this is totally insensitive and ignorant! When I hear those toxic waste language and observed that kind of ignorant arrogant attitudes, I am insulted, I can choose to be quiet and accept the insults, or fight back and risk being locked out or kicked out from dharma forum, I choose the latter.

please review the sequence of the posts to see if what I said above is based on objective facts.  if you still believe that so-called psychological professionals have absolute rights to attack and insult anyone using toxic languages (it may not be toxic to them to use those languages, but it is to the victims, it is to me!), and if I defend myself against their insults and attacks I shall be kicked out, then I really don't know what else to say, it is a forum in the west run by westerners with beliefs that that science is the only absolute truth and it is ok to insult those who do not believe in such believe system, it is what it is.  saying what I had said is likely more than enough to earn me multiple psychological and mental disorder diagnoses already, I can hear them cheering and making grinning faces.

more from the dhammapada




3. "He abused me, he struck me, he overpowered me, he robbed me." Those who harbor such thoughts do not still their hatred.

4. "He abused me, he struck me, he overpowered me, he robbed me." Those who do not harbor such thoughts still their hatred.

5. Hatred is never appeased by hatred in this world. By non-hatred alone is hatred appeased. This is a law eternal.

6. There are those who do not realize that one day we all must die. But those who do realize this settle their quarrels.

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/13/19 3:56 PM as a reply to John Not2.
John Not2:
Daniel M. Ingram:
Dear John Not2,

Regarding the fear of death, I know something about it, having practiced emergency medicine for a while, and it is very easy to have an impression of how you might react to it until you actually get there, I believe. You might keep an open mind and see how your ideas about it work out.

I also know of numerous reports from well-respected senior meditation teachers who were dying and said it surprised them with how difficult it could be, something they didn't anticipate until they were up against it. I have also personally seen patients that I could barely have imagined going to their death with a very high degree of equanimity and acceptance do so easily. Obviously, deaths come in many flavors, so I hope yours, however it happens, is one of the more palatable ones.

I have unfortunately gotten to witness some very ugly, extremely painful, terrifying deaths, and few to none handle those well when they occur. May you avoid such a death, but, if one comes to you, may your insight prove up to the task.

As a related curiosity, how do you handle pain since whatever happened happened?

Regarding rebirth, it is a paradox created by a illusion of there being a stable, continuous, coherent, independent self, as well as the illusion of there actually being a future and a past, as well as the illusion of there being any truly existing thing or even realm to be born into. There are levels of insight that see through this illusion to various degrees.

From a far more relative point of view, it would seem reasonable that, as it appears we were all born, there was some reason why we were born as we are, that what appears to be this spark of consciousness is in or associated with this body. If it still troubles you in some way, you could consider that perhaps there are levels of insight yet to attain, and experiences regarding rebirth that you could yet have that might appear to shed some direct experiential light on it and give a more insightful relationship to the question.

Best wishes,

Daniel
I am grateful for your kind words/wisdom, thank you!

regarding pains, I dislike and am fearful of physical pains, I do everything possible to avoid them, I would gladly choose death over pain.  emotional pains were even harder for me to deal with, but when I woke up from identifying with my physical body as "I",  all emotional pains vanished and they had never returned since, physical pains didn't go away with my awakening.

I practice Buddhist meditation because I had seen proofs that advanced meditators can disengage their "self" from the physical body: the black and white video footages of Vietnamese monks poured gasoline on their bodies then set them on fire, throughout the entire time being burnt to death, their bodies remained still, they were burnt alive but in deep meditation states they were in, they were able to disengage the non-physical self from the physical body, they appeared not feeling any pain while they got burnt alive.  I am aiming to attain that level of meditative state.

regarding rebirth, I think it is more complicated than what we are capable to understand at this point, I am sure you know about dr. Ian Stevenson's research, it is difficult for me to write him off as an ignorant, a fraud, or as superstitions, he has over 40 years of research data to at least show that there are strange phenomenons suggest that we can`t just write off rebirth as superstitions. 

aloha john,

   Fear of physical pain is an emotional pain. If suicide is preferable to "pain" generally, your fear of pain is probably pathological. You should see a shrink.

(wink)

terry

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/13/19 4:26 PM as a reply to terry.
S.:
Re: mind ~ body ~ universe ~ Mind conversation I'm reminded of The Invisibles
 


being without anxiety is overrated...

Relevant to anxiety, energy, etc, I like this Trungpa quote from Journey Without Goal:

The student of tantra should be in a constant state of panic. That panic is electric and should be regarded as worthwhile. . . . Panic is the source of openness and the source of questions. Panic is the source of open heart and open ground. Sudden panic creates an enormous sense of fresh air. . . . We panic a thousand times a day, 108 times an hour. . . . Everyone in the tantric lineage has panicked: the teachers have panicked and the students have panicked. Because of that healthy situation of panic, the tantric lineage has developed beautifully, smoothly, and healthily. Nobody has made mistakes. If anybody did make a mistake, he just vanished and became a piece of charcoal. . . . The secret is not particularly exotic. It is not anything special. It simply refers to what we discover when we begin to play with the cosmos, the energy of the universe.

good stuff...

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/13/19 5:28 PM as a reply to terry.
John Not2 was locked out and thus cannot answer. Maybe it would be good karma to stop telling him that there is something wrong with him.

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/13/19 11:28 PM as a reply to terry.
from thomas merton "the way of chuang tzu"



PERFECT JOY


Is there to be found on earth a fullness of joy, or is there no such thing? Is there some way to make life fully worth living, or is this impossible? If there is such a way, how do you go about finding it? What should you try to do? What should you seek to avoid? What should be the goal in which your activity comes to rest? What should you accept? What should you refuse to accept? ·What should you love? What should you hate?

What the world values is money, reputation, long life, achievement. What it counts as joy is health and comfort of body, good food, fine clothes, beautiful things to look at, pleasant music to listen to.

What it condemns is lack of money, a low social rank, a reputation for being no good, and an early death.

What it considers misfortune is bodily discomfort and labor, no chance to get your fill of good food, not having good clothes to wear, having no way to amuse or delight the eye, no pleasant music to listen to. If people find that they are deprived of these things, they go into a panic or fall into despair. They are so concerned for their life that their anxiety makes life unbearable, even when they have the things they think they want. Their very concern for enjoyment makes them unhappy.

The rich make life intolerable, driving themselves in order to get more and more money which they cannot really use. In so doing they are alienated from themselves, and exhaust themselves in their own service as though they were slaves of others.

The ambitious run day and night in pursuit of honors, constantly in anguish about the success of their plans, dread­ing the miscalculation that may wreck everything. Thus they are alienated from themselves, exhausting their real life in service of the shadow created by their insatiable hope.

The birth of a man is the birth of his sorrow.

The longer he lives, the more stupid he becomes, because his anxiety to avoid unavoidable death becomes more and more acute. What bitterness! He lives for what is always out of reach! His thirst for survival in the future makes him incapable of living in the present.

What about the self-sacrificing officials and scholars? They are honored by the world because they are good, upright, self­ sacrificing men.

Yet their good character does not preserve them from unhappiness, nor even from ruin, disgrace, and death.

I wonder, in that case, if their "goodness" is really so good after all. Is it perhaps a source of unhappiness?

Suppose you admit they are happy. But is it a happy thing to have a character and a career that lead to one's own eventual destruction? On the other hand, can you call them "unhappy" if, in sacrificing themselves, they save the lives and fortunes of others?

Take the case of the minister who conscientiously and uprightly opposes an unjust decision of his king! Some say, "Tell the truth, and if the King will not listen, let him do what he likes. You have no further obligation."

On the other hand, Tzu Shu continued to resist the un­just policy of his sovereign. He was consequently destroyed. But if he had not stood up for what he believed to be right, his name would not be held in honor.

So there is the question, Shall the course he took be called "good" if, at the same time, it was fatal to him?

 
I cannot tell if what the world considers "happiness" is happiness or not. All I know is that when I consider the way they go about attaining it, I see them carried away headlong, grim and obsessed, in the general onrush of the human herd, unable to stop themselves or to change their direction. All the while they claim to be just on the point of attaining hap­piness.

For my part, I cannot accept their standards, whether of happiness or unhappiness. I ask myself if after all their con­cept of happiness has any meaning whatever.

My opinion is that you never find happiness until you stop looking for it. My greatest happiness consists precisely in doing nothing whatever that is calculated to obtain happi­ness: and this, in the minds of most people, is the worst pos­sible course.

I will hold to the saying that: "Perfect joy is to be without joy. Perfect praise is to be without praise."

If you ask "what ought to be done" and "what ought not to be done" on earth in order to produce happiness, I answer that these questions do not have an answer. There is no way of determining such things.

Yet at the same time, if I cease striving for happiness, the "right" and the "wrong" at once become apparent all by themselves.

Contentment and well-being at once become possible the moment you cease to act with them in view, and if you prac­tice non-doing (wu wei), you will have both happiness and well-being.

Here is how I sum it up:

Heaven does nothing: its non-doing is its serenity.
Earth does nothing: its non-doing is its rest.
From the union of these two non-doings
All actions proceed,
All things are made.
How vast, how invisible
This coming-to-bel
All things come from nowhere!
How vast, how invisible-
No way to explain it!
All beings in their perfection
Are born of non-doing.
Hence it is said:
"Heaven and earth do nothing
Yet there is nothing they do not do."
Where is the man who can attain
To this non-doing?
 

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/13/19 10:31 PM as a reply to Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö.
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
John Not2 was locked out and thus cannot answer. Maybe it would be good karma to stop telling him that there is something wrong with him.

There's something wrong with him?

RE: A stop-gap (old topic)
Answer
5/13/19 11:05 PM as a reply to terry.
lin yutang, quoting chuang tse, in "the wisdom of lao tse"



'50.2  THE AGITATIONS OF MAN'S SOUL. For whether the soul is locked in sleep or whether in waking hours the body moves, we are striving and struggling with the immediate circumstances. Some are easy-going and leisurely, some are deep and cunning, and some are secretive. Now we are frightened over petty fears, now disheartened and dismayed over some great terror. Now the mind flies forth like an arrow from a cross-bow, to be the arbiter of right and wrong. Now it stays behind as if sworn to an oath, to hold on to what it has secured. Then, as under autumn and winter's blight, comes gradual decay, and submerged in its own occupations, it keeps on running its course, never to return. Finally, worn out and imprisoned, it is choked up like an old drain, and the failing mind shall not see light again.

Joy and anger, sorrow and happiness, worries and regrets, hesitation and fears, come upon us by turns, with ever-changing moods, like music from the hollows, or like mushrooms from damp. Day and night they alternate within us, but we cannot tell whence they spring. Alas! Alas! Could we for a moment lay our finger upon their very Cause?

But for these emotions I should not be. Yet but for me, there would be no one to feel them. So far we can go; but we do not know by whose order they come into play. It would seem there was a soul; but the clue to its existence is wanting. That it functions is credible enough, though we cannot see its form. Perhaps it has inner reality without outward form.

Take the human body with all its hundred bones, nine external cavities and six internal organs, all complete. Which part of it should I love best? Do you not cherish all equally, or have you a preference? Do these organs serve as servants of someone else? Since servants cannot govern themselves, do they serve as master and servants by turn? Surely there is some soul which controls them all.

But whether or not we ascertain what is the true nature of this soul, it matters but little to the soul itself. For once coming into this material shape, it runs its course until it is exhausted. To be harassed by the wear and tear of life, and to be driven along without possibility of arresting one's course—is not this pitiful indeed? To labor without cease all life, and then, without living to enjoy the fruit, worn out with labor, to depart, one knows not whither—is not this a just cause for grief?

Men say there is no death—of what avail? The body decomposes, and the mind goes with it. Is this not a great cause for sorrow? Is human life indeed such a puzzle? Or is it I alone who am puzzled, and others not so? (1:4. 5)

RE: A stop-gap for my impending suicide
Answer
5/14/19 3:45 AM as a reply to terry.
terry:
Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö:
John Not2 was locked out and thus cannot answer. Maybe it would be good karma to stop telling him that there is something wrong with him.

There's something wrong with him?



Not that I know of. emoticon