Message Boards Message Boards

Miscellaneous

Neurotic minds and hardcore dharma

Toggle
Neurotic minds and hardcore dharma
Answer
9/8/17 6:36 AM
It’s slowly started to dawn on me that 'normal,' non-neurotic people don’t have a constant torrent of racing, negative thoughts streaming through their minds. Is this right?

Like, my girlfriend can just look at ducks on a lake and actually just look at the ducks. Rather than being abstracted off worrying about emergent quasi-Fascism or something. She finds it amazing that I’m proud of myself for having spent six years sitting in the dark to enable myself to see the ducks.

Presumably most(?) of us who end up here have a statistically unusual relationship to thought? Particularly to anxious, abstract thought? And that’s why Gary Weber/Eckhart Tolle types seem to find ‘Awakening’ so amazing – when it’s not all that different to normal people’s everyday experience?

[Although modern neuroscience seems to suggest that the brain has a built in 'negativity bias' - which presumably was the result of a successful evolutionary adaptation. i.e. the 'worrier' types tended not to get eaten so much and produced copies of themselves?]

RE: Neurotic minds and hardcore dharma
Answer
9/8/17 6:51 AM as a reply to Robin Woods.
It's possible she has less mental chatter or is naturally more aware. It's also possible she is no unaware, that she is unable to detect how her mind operates.

In my experience, moving yourself out of habitual fight-or-flight patterns (or addiction to thinking) is a challenging task and you are right to be proud. It's like rewiring your brain hardware - no small feat.

RE: Neurotic minds and hardcore dharma
Answer
9/8/17 7:54 AM as a reply to Paul Smith.
Thanks Paul! I guess I've just started to realise how different my pre-meditation mental experience was to 'normal' peoples'.

Haha - I literally have no need to torment myself anymore with how little I understand European colonialism and how guilty I should feel about it! Touch - Sight - Sound - Smell/Pleasant etc emoticon

RE: Neurotic minds and hardcore dharma
Answer
9/8/17 8:05 AM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Most people haven't ever gotten concentrated enough to become aware of the dukkha below the surface of the water.  So called "normal" people fall into this category.

RE: Neurotic minds and hardcore dharma
Answer
9/8/17 10:25 PM as a reply to Robin Woods.
Hi its possible, but I am not so sure on one hand you could argue that anxiety prone people are more prone to get in to meditation. But on the other to do insight meditation and be successful at it, you really can't be too identified with negative feelings.

I think in terms of the big 5 personality traits, I am fairly sure hardcore dharma practitioners are low on Agreableness  and high on Opennes relatvie to the general population.

I think the more 'softcore' (not sure what the right word is) dharma practiioners are probably higher on Agreableness.