Message Boards Message Boards

The DhO Itself

What is welcome here? Summarize DhO? 'Mental Athletics'?

Toggle
The Dharma Overground is a resource for the support of practices that actually lead to beneficial, fundamental mental, perceptual and emotional transformations. It is a place where everything related to the support of practice may flourish, including where to go on retreats, what techniques may lead to what, an in depth look at the maps of possible states and stages, discussions about how to determine what experience was what, and in general anything that has to do with actually practicing rather than what typically occurs in, for example, standard meditation circles and forums. Here you will find a robust and variable community of people with a wide range of experience levels, perspectives and interests, though all loosely bound by the same basic principles of empowering, helpful, engaged knowledge and exploration of the possibilities of the mind and how it may be modified to reduce suffering and enhance wisdom.

As far as I know practices like yoga, taichi, and bioenergetics are welcome here. Sometimes they aren't presented in a way that's directly related to "dharma" or "fundamental" transformations. Similarly with psychotherapy approaches etc. Secular approaches to meditation which might not recognize anything "fundamental" also seem welcome here. Practical "philosophy" like Meaningness etc seem welcome at times. What about "art of memory" people? They practice visualizations to improve their memory for fun, competition, etc. Are they welcome?

Generally, are people who practice any kind of "mental athletics" welcome? If someone was fascinated with developing strong concentration, or visualization ability, or peripheral awareness ability, or flow states for sports (not necessarily connected to any ("fundamental") transformation) are they welcome?

Is this an accurate summary of the DhO's intention/spirit in rough order of popularity/welcomeness:

1. Pragmatic-oriented strongly-Buddhist-inspired meditation
2. Pragmatic-oriented practices from other religious/spiritual/occult traditions
3. "Mental athletics" especially if it's intended to induce fundamental beneficial transformations
4. Any self-improvement technique especially if it's intended to facilitate 1-3 or has a pragmatic/empirical orientation

Clearly this all isn't "dharma". Yet, there is a connecting thread. If you could encapsulate 1-4 in one shortish phrase what would it be? Here is my current attempt as of now: "Pragmatic self-experimentation intended to improve the lives of oneself and others." Clearly though, service and outreach etc aren't self-experimentation.

I'm aware that the DhO isn't one person or group of people. What are your thoughts on this?

edit: formatting fixed. this editor sucks

RE: What is welcome here? Summarize DhO? 'Mental Athletics'?
Answer
6/23/18 9:59 AM as a reply to Dada Kind.
Yes, the editor sucks. I am slowly getting up the nerve to start the Liferay 7 upgrade attempts again, if I can get the necessary time and tech support for this, but there were problems with the various editors on Liferay 7 also, just different problems.

What specifically is on your mind that is driving this question about what is allowed or appreciated here? What do you wish to discuss that gives you concern?

RE: What is welcome here? Summarize DhO? 'Mental Athletics'?
Answer
6/23/18 12:07 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Hi Daniel,

I posted this before I posted about the "Russian pragmatic dharma" -- psychonetics, etc.

My motivation for posting this though was mostly philosophical, though. It's occurred to me previously.

Here are a few practical reasons why this might matter:
1) Gives a more general guide to what is welcome here beyond just extensional listing
2) Gives understanding about which communities are adjacent or afar
3) Gives understanding about how this community might fit into a larger historical context (esp. in the future)

People call this "pragmatic dharma". But clearly not everything here is Buddhist. Then, pragmatic _____? What word or phrase fits best?

RE: What is welcome here? Summarize DhO? 'Mental Athletics'?
Answer
6/23/18 1:30 PM as a reply to Dada Kind.
Dada Kind:
Here is my current attempt as of now: "Pragmatic self-experimentation intended to improve the lives of oneself and others." Clearly though, service and outreach etc aren't self-experimentation.


Like just about anything else, service and outreach involve sensations which can be observed, which can result in insight.

Personally I would suggest that DhO is about pragmatic understanding (with the pragmatic aspect being less important than the understanding). If a practise helps to see through ignorance, it's likely welcome here.