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Tenants of the mind
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11/24/16 6:42 PM
Hello I am new here. I have a question about tenants of the mind. I define a tenant of the mind to be a temporary yet free floating entity that seem to pop in and out of my stream of focus. This occurs during meditation, work, etc. Most would just call them distractions but I thought distractions were triggered( yet what I'm referring to seems to have no trigger). During meditation these tenants obstruct my direction of focus, they cause my physical body to react, and leave me in a state of mental shock directly afterwards where it seems Ive forgotten where I left off, yet they have no rhyme or reason. It may simply be a snippet from a song playing over and over or a 3 second sense from a show repeating itself over and over. (Like a broken record) I have experienced this occurring my entire life even before I began mediation. How do I began to evict these tenants? How do I stop them from breaking my focus and leading my attention away in a split second reaction that seems to leave me in shock afterwards? 

RE: Tenants of the mind
Answer
11/24/16 10:06 PM as a reply to Rohaun.
Hi Rohaun,

I had a similar problem a few years ago with songs lodging in my mind during a retreat.

There are two basic ways to deal with these kinds of distractions. One is to use the labelling technique to label them, maintaining as much equanimity as possible toward the distraction . So if music arises, you attach a light mental label to it as "music", maintain awareness on the sensory object that is distracting, then repeat the label periodically until the object disappears. When it disappears, you can label that with "gone". If you find that you have some aversion arising around the distraction, you can switch your label to "aversion" and note the aversion instead.

If you have strong concentration, you can switch to using the distraction as a meditation object. Focus on it, examine it, try to find out what's behind it. During this examination, you don't need to do a lot of thinking, just set the intention to thoroughly understand the distraction, what it's origin is, and what it's cessation. This technique works better when there is no emotional context arising around the distraction.

Good luck!

              

RE: Tenants of the mind
Answer
11/25/16 4:23 AM as a reply to Rohaun.
Sounds like what Culadasa defines as a "Gross distraction". Sorry for short input, but google Culadasa and The mind illuminated and stage 4, .

If the same "snippets" are always returning, give them name, and mentally say that label at the point where you "awaken" and understand that you lost your object of concentration, then revert to your primary object. Btw, does your primary object remain in your awareness, or do you loose it completely (go mind wandering on the snippet?)

RE: Tenants of the mind
Answer
11/25/16 9:53 AM as a reply to svmonk.
I have also had music in my head pretty much nonstop all my life. On retreat, with other distractions removed, it can become especially noticeable. Sometimes I play the game of Name That Tune (for example, I just noticed that what's in my head at the moment is Mozart's Ave Verum). As my meditation practice has advanced, I no longer experience as much aversion, treating it as just one of the facts of life. I agree with svmonk's recommendations that noting it or focusing on the aversion are good tactics when it becomes bothersome. 

RE: Tenants of the mind
Answer
11/25/16 7:48 PM as a reply to Rohaun.
When I smoke marijuana heavily, these songs stuck in the head take a life of their own. They become loud and overpowering.

Concentrating on the face, while repeating a short mantra coordinated with the breath helps. Try to listen to ordinary sounds around you while doing the above.

RE: Tenants of the mind
Answer
11/26/16 8:38 AM as a reply to Tacitus Eth.
Tacitus eth. I do loose the object when the wandering occurs. Matter of fact a better way for me to explain this is that I am vision dominant of all my sense. Visions of the eyes and mind tend appear as clear very vivid images and projections in my minds eye. When the tenants show them selves my mind automatically tries to visualize the sense. This creates a projection that that my attentions urges to see. Songs, smells, even feelings are visualized. I have flashbacks, Deja Vu daily, and vivid day dreams daily. Seeming uncontrollable they just hit me, and that Vail of the senses is hard to pull back when this is occurring each time. What I want to do is use meditation to strengthen my connection with my other senses. Do the any text talk about sense imbalance and how to bring it into order?

RE: Tenants of the mind
Answer
11/26/16 5:21 PM as a reply to Rohaun.
Rohaun:
How do I began to evict these tenants? How do I stop them from breaking my focus and leading my attention away in a split second reaction that seems to leave me in shock afterwards? 

New here and began to read MCTB: "When in doubt, just note."

Remember one self-retreat in mountains where it went from "Hell Bells" (and associated feelings) over "Halleluja", on to "Let It Be".

Funnily, since that time I lost any interest in listening to recorded music at all.