demotivating anxiety

demotivating anxiety John Hooper 11/21/11 9:11 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Oliver Myth 11/22/11 1:39 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 11/22/11 6:38 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 11/22/11 11:37 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 11/22/11 5:31 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Jane Laurel Carrington 11/22/11 9:25 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Oliver Myth 11/23/11 12:52 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 11/23/11 11:34 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem 11/23/11 11:56 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 11/23/11 5:47 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Oliver Myth 11/25/11 2:17 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 11/25/11 6:05 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Oliver Myth 11/26/11 3:00 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Jane Laurel Carrington 11/23/11 11:57 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 11/22/11 7:08 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Brian Eleven 11/23/11 4:50 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 11/23/11 5:50 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Brian Eleven 11/23/11 6:23 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 11/24/11 1:24 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety This Good Self 11/27/11 3:23 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 11/28/11 11:32 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety This Good Self 11/28/11 6:29 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety This Good Self 11/28/11 7:40 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 11/29/11 9:12 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 11/30/11 8:41 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 11/28/11 10:10 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 12/16/19 12:09 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö 12/16/19 2:01 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Siavash ' 12/16/19 2:12 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 12/4/20 11:54 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Laurel Carrington 12/18/19 10:56 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 7/13/23 4:14 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety John Hooper 7/13/23 12:47 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 7/13/23 12:32 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 7/13/23 12:36 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 8/6/23 5:47 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Chris M 7/13/23 1:03 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 7/18/23 4:43 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 7/18/23 1:54 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Papa Che Dusko 8/6/23 7:20 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 8/8/23 10:03 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 8/9/23 5:11 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 8/14/23 6:36 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Mathew Poskus 8/26/23 10:43 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Tore Kersten 8/26/23 3:56 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Smiling Stone 8/26/23 11:06 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Tore Kersten 8/27/23 1:22 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Smiling Stone 8/29/23 5:46 AM
RE: demotivating anxiety Tom Smith 8/26/23 12:03 PM
RE: demotivating anxiety Smiling Stone 9/1/23 3:58 AM
John Hooper, modified 12 Years ago at 11/21/11 9:11 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/21/11 9:11 PM

demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
My main affliction in life is anxiety. For over 30 years I have tried countless things, from pharma to biofeedback to all forms of meditation. I meditate every day, and have for a long time, and for a while the anxiety left. Oh joy! But eventually it came back. When it comes back, it is like everything I worked for is just washed away, and I am defenseless in suffering. Yes, I do stay with it. I don't try to escape. It doesn't let up, it is like a living hell. It destroys my confidence that my practice means anything. Then, eventually, it gradually fades away in it's own time, for no reason.

It is back and I am staying with it again. It fills me with dread, fear, and worry. I watch it rise over and over in waves, pangs coming in my heart, and lesser pangs in the center of my forehead. I label it and that helps a little, but it keeps coming. It is destroying my confidence in my practice again. Is there anything I can do beside stay with it, allow it to be, label what I feel?

I normally watch my breath for two 20 minute sessions a day. I do about 20 minutes of compassion meditation at night.

Any help would be appreciated. Does anyone have any ideas?
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Oliver Myth, modified 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 1:39 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 1:02 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 143 Join Date: 6/10/11 Recent Posts
John,
My heart really goes out to you on this. All my life I have been moving around from new place to new place frequently with intense anxiety that comes from needing to adapt to somewhere new, and frequently at times I will experience a lot of social anxiety (normally attributed to being away from home, but it's foundation is definitely located in the body/mind). It is not pleasant or in my control.

You seem to realize that your anxiety is irrational. That’s the starting point (sounds like a re-occuring starting point in your case). If it's not disappearing, than the source may be that the anxiety comes from your body (muscle tensions, etc.), or it may come from automatic responses to outside experiences (learned from childhood), or from some sort of spiritual purification cycle (such as described in MCTB by Daniel Ingram or AH Almaas' work). Maybe all three.

Since it is a chronic problem, nothing may help more than building some rapport with a few close friends or by living in a harmonious environment and working harmoniously with people. When there is some consistency and acceptance it can start as a HUGE building block for further work. Huge.

How old are you? What kind of environment do you live in? Does the returning anxiety seem to have anything to do with anything particular? Benefit may come from articulating what you think about it. It's something you might want to explore to it's depth!

Confidence would also help. If you can recognize yourself overcoming the anxiety over and over again then you can relax a bit about needing to overcome it. This means also noting and becoming intensely aware of the times when you are NOT anxious, when it happens, where it happens, why it happens. Anxiety isn't all of the time after all, right? Isn't it a bit of a relief just to recognize that sooner or later it WILL go away?

What a relief change and impermanence is!

Please write back!
Oliver

Edited to say: I am really impressed by the work you have already done to deal with it. How about fasting? Eating/digesting can be a massive stressor. Fasting cools the nerves and lets one be rational and quick in the head without physical nervousness (once the hunger pangs pass). I do it for self-maintainance in order to cool down from social stress, sometimes once or twice a week.
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katy steger,thru11615 with thanks, modified 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 6:38 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 6:38 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 1740 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
Hi John,

Thanks for your post. I am responding to your post, because I can relate to the history you have provided.

Have you considered every-moment meditation? Mindfulness, zen, actualism, just-doing?

You're posting on a buddhist site, so perhaps you have conviction in the three characteristics of existence: anicca, dukkkha and anatta?

When I made a commitment to really sink into the problem of interior misery and anxiety (including a lifetime of anxious dreaming, aka nightmares, which I thought everyone surely was having), it took about nine months to see a permanent, initial shift.

If my experience is useful to you, then here it is:
1. Take care of the body -
[indent]a. aerobic, intense exercise. Here is a user-friendly slide-show.
b. stretch gently and actively with long, slow deep breathing. Loren Fishman (great general explanation of stretching and breathing), Ray Long (nice muscle imagery here), and Herbert Benson (all med doctors if that information encourages you), have useful information on this
[/indent]
2. commit the mind to here and now attention. Not ruminating here and now, attending to that which is here and now. Check the senses if you are not sure if you are here and now or ruminating for later/past times. Instead of carving out time for meditation, carve-out time for i) ruminating and ii) practical planning, and hang here-and-now attentiveness/mindfulness off of that simple skeleton for the great bulk of your day. Apply curiosity and willingness. Save any strong emotive responses for "20-minute rumination meditation".

3. Know that you can change your mind and make the past 30 years a thing of the past 30 years.

4. Sincerity and willingness in every moment to make the change (conviction or insight into anatta helps, but theist faith can provide the same effect, which is essentially that one's sense of self is not to be taken too seriously - that no self, (or higher self, divine self depending on any religious traditions) is to be sought and realized)

Best wishes.
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katy steger,thru11615 with thanks, modified 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 7:08 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 7:08 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 1740 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
And, there's a loop that seems to occur in chronic stress: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal_axis#Stress_and_disease

Mammal studies are indicating that regular exercise can help re-regulate a hypoactive HPA system (e.g., PTSD) and hyperactive HPA (e.g., depression).
John Hooper, modified 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 11:37 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 11:37 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
Thank you everyone for your input, I appreciate your kindness.

Oddly enough, eating less or fasting gives me a lot more energy, and actually makes my anxiety worse in the short run. Of course, that might be because I was sedating myself with too much food before. Right now I am eating very little. Maybe my nerves will calm down once I am fully adjusted to having more energy.

I think exercise is an excellent suggestion, as I have fallen out of the habit and only walk a few miles every other week. It used to be almost every day. At work, I have access to a Yoga class, so I believe I will sign up for that and take advantage of the gym. I live in Michigan, so when it gets cold I start avoiding long walks.

katy steger:
3. Know that you can change your mind and make the past 30 years a thing of the past 30 years.


That might be the source of my discouragement. All of my anxiety vanished about six years ago. After carefully avoiding caffeine for years, I was drinking coffee every morning, something that would have sent me over the edge before. Then, about a year ago, the anxiety returned. I thought I was completely past it. It is good to talk about this, because now I am seeing how proud and attached I was to my "attainment" of extinguished anxiety. It was a sure sign of progress, I thought. I am grasping, and I want my inner calm back.

Maybe a better way to mark my progress would be to go by the steps detailed here, on this site.

Is there anyone who would be willing to help me with this? I have no idea what stage I am in. I can count breaths at least up to 200 without distraction. I sometimes just use "ahm" as a mantra or do compassion meditation. I have worked with koans for long periods of time, and when calm I can sit without thought for fairly long periods. Like I said, I've been doing this for decades and I've tried everything. Maybe a definite path with clear signposts would keep me moving in the right direction.

I'll go study the steps again.
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katy steger,thru11615 with thanks, modified 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 5:31 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 5:31 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 1740 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
Hi John -

Thank you everyone for your input, I appreciate your kindness.
For my part, you are welcome. I came by way of the DhO similarly.

Oddly enough, eating less or fasting gives me a lot more energy, and actually makes my anxiety worse in the short run. Of course, that might be because I was sedating myself with too much food before. Right now I am eating very little. Maybe my nerves will calm down once I am fully adjusted to having more energy.
Passion flower is known to help anxiety. In the event you are on any drugs (especially sedative medications (CNS depressants)), then seriously consider not taking Passion Flower.

I think exercise is an excellent suggestion, as I have fallen out of the habit and only walk a few miles every other week. It used to be almost every day. At work, I have access to a Yoga class, so I believe I will sign up for that and take advantage of the gym. I live in Michigan, so when it gets cold I start avoiding long walks.
An excellent combo. If the yoga style is "flow" or "ashtanga", then it will involve a lot of fast, contracting movements and, for relaxation and changing muscle memory towards relaxation, then you'd want more of a classic hatha - wherein asanas are comfortably active and engaged for (at least) two minutes (eventually) - gently working through the arc reflex as explained by authors in earlier hyperlinks.

Is there anyone who would be willing to help me with this? I have no idea what stage I am in. I can count breaths at least up to 200 without distraction.
I am not the person to help in the aspect, only to say that it may be worthwhile to only count to 10 and keep repeating, versus counting progressively. Counting to higher and higher numbers may serve to re-establish some attainment which can reinforce a sense of self (versus here and now, anatta). Tho I do understand that you may be mentioning it here in order that a prospective meditation helper knows something of concentration ability.

Best wishes, and welcome to the DhO.
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Jane Laurel Carrington, modified 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 9:25 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/22/11 9:25 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 196 Join Date: 12/29/10 Recent Posts
I also have terrible problems with anxiety. I'm trying to work on it with noting practice and grounding in the body. Today I was noting with a teacher over Skype, who advised me to begin by grounding in physical sensations, and then express compassion. As I did so I noted the painful knot through the midsection that always signals fear, and then as I kept noting that I found my eyes begin to sting, my throat begin to contract, and I ended up in tears. We noted for awhile, and I cried through the whole thing, and then noticed that the knot wasn't there any more. What seems to have been happening is the anxiety was masking sadness. I can't say that I have no more anxiety, but it was an interesting exercise, and I'm hoping it suggests a new direction.

My plan for overcoming anxiety in the longer term is to go for stream entry. Like you, I have tried many interventions, including lots of psychotherapy and drugs. The only medication that seems to work for me is a beta blocker, and even that isn't always effective. But I have a prescription and take one or two as needed.

Your meditation practice sounds like a form of tranquility. If you try insight practice, you'll end up at some point in the Dark Night, and things get worse. I believe quite strongly that I'm there now. You may be there already and not know it. The only solution to Dark Night is to continue with insight until you get stream entry.

You will also find on Dharma Overground a lot of people practicing actualism. I have not tried this approach, but you might wish to investigate it and decide for yourself. There are a lot of people here who can help with that. I wish you the best. This is not a pleasant way to live; I know that from experience!
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Oliver Myth, modified 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 12:52 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 12:52 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 143 Join Date: 6/10/11 Recent Posts
This is an excellent topic. It's on my subscribe list now : ). Thanks all.
John Hooper, modified 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 11:34 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 11:34 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
Jane Laurel Carrington:

Your meditation practice sounds like a form of tranquility. If you try insight practice, you'll end up at some point in the Dark Night, and things get worse. I believe quite strongly that I'm there now. You may be there already and not know it. The only solution to Dark Night is to continue with insight until you get stream entry.


The description of the Dark Night seems to apply to much of my life, unfortunately. I'm not sure what is the exact definition of "stream entry" but even as a child I had strange experiences, periods of merging with the environment in a timeless state that was far more real than ordinary reality, beautiful, just so infused with ... aliveness ... I can't really describe it. I didn't ask for any of these experiences, nor the dark and terrifying ones that followed. I knew absolutely nothing about meditation or any of this. My fear was that I was just crazy.

That is why, over these many decades, I have tried everything. I haven't been desperate for more beautiful moments, I have been trying to escape the darkness, fear, and endless anxiety. Sometimes it happens, and it is all gone like it never existed, and I feel normal. But then it is back. Maybe I should try to recreate those extraordinary moments, when the world is changed, lighted from within, and all problems have ceased. Maybe that is stream entry.
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Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem, modified 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 11:56 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 11:56 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 2227 Join Date: 10/27/10 Recent Posts
John Hooper:
The description of the Dark Night seems to apply to much of my life, unfortunately. I'm not sure what is the exact definition of "stream entry" but even as a child I had strange experiences, periods of merging with the environment in a timeless state that was far more real than ordinary reality, beautiful, just so infused with ... aliveness ... I can't really describe it. I didn't ask for any of these experiences, nor the dark and terrifying ones that followed. I knew absolutely nothing about meditation or any of this. My fear was that I was just crazy.

That is why, over these many decades, I have tried everything. I haven't been desperate for more beautiful moments, I have been trying to escape the darkness, fear, and endless anxiety. Sometimes it happens, and it is all gone like it never existed, and I feel normal. But then it is back. Maybe I should try to recreate those extraordinary moments, when the world is changed, lighted from within, and all problems have ceased. Maybe that is stream entry.


Freedom independent of conditions is just that. Searching for a particular experience or moment or feeling or sensation, and trying to reside in that, or the antithetical trying to get away from a particular experience or moment or feeling or sensation, will not lead to the peace you seek.

You need to identify what the suffering is in your life. You have to figure out what causes that suffering to arise. You've already noticed that both the good and the bad periods come and go... so you have to figure out what causes the suffering to cease, once it has arisen. Then you must simply train your mind so that the conditions which cause suffering to arise, no longer come into play, and the ones that cause it to cease, do. (Hint: grasping at experiences or being averse to experiences is suffering and causes suffering; doing that does not cause suffering to cease, ultimately.) This is where practice comes in.

Thus practicing, you will gradually suffer less and less until the day comes when suffering is no more.
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Jane Laurel Carrington, modified 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 11:57 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 11:57 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 196 Join Date: 12/29/10 Recent Posts
Stream entry is a term denoting the first path of the four-path model of enlightenment. There's a page from the Hamilton Project website that might help you identify what your experience has been, and what I suggest you may want to aim for: http://thehamiltonproject.blogspot.com/p/yogi-testimonies.html. The "beautiful moments" you describe sound as if they may be the "Knowledge of the Arising and Passing Away of All Phenomena," otherwise known as the A&P, or the 4th vipassana nyana. Daniel Ingram's book is a great guide for understanding these things.

Trying to get out of a bad place and back into a beautiful one is natural and understandable, but to make progress on the path what you really have to do is investigate as much as possible where you actually are. This can be miserably unpleasant, but in the end you find yourself disembedding from whatever misery you're in as you prepare yourself to move on to the next stage in the progress of insight. You are welcome to read through my own practice thread, which I keep at Kenneth Folk Dharma: http://kennethfolkdharma.wetpaint.com/thread/4588871/Laurel%27s+practice. I describe there my own experience with the A&P, and with Dark Night (which you'll hear me bitching about extensively in the most recent posts). I am looking forward to the day when I can describe myself experiencing first path! There are other yogis on that website, as well as on this one and the Hamilton Project, whose practice threads are a wealth of helpful, real-life testimonies. May you be safe and protected, may you be peaceful, may you live with ease and with kindness, and may you awaken in this lifetime.
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Brian Eleven, modified 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 4:50 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 4:50 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 221 Join Date: 9/14/10 Recent Posts
I've also dealt with depression/anxiety and have found that for me forgiveness and releasing/relaxing has helped. It may or may not work for you, I can't say, but I've seen a dramatic change in 6 weeks. This was after about 1 1/2 years of vipassana, which helped only slightly, and caused me periods of suffering that were worse then before I began meditating. The site I would suggest you check out is:
http://www.dhammasukha.org/index.html
They also have a yahoo group in which you can get more personalized instruction.
The main thrust of the practice is to smile and release any cause of tension, then relax that tension. It sounds a little too simple, which kept me from really trying it for months, but it actually works...for me. My experience has been that my previous efforts at 'concentration' just caused more tension(suffering/craving) to arise.
I don't represent this teacher or get anything from it, but it has helped a great deal, perhaps it could also ease your suffering. Best of Luck to you.

Metta
Brian.
John Hooper, modified 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 5:47 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 5:47 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
Beoman Claudiu Dragon Emu Fire Golem:
You've already noticed that both the good and the bad periods come and go... so you have to figure out what causes the suffering to cease, once it has arisen. Then you must simply train your mind so that the conditions which cause suffering to arise, no longer come into play, and the ones that cause it to cease, do.


I am being very honest when I say that the good and bad periods seem to come and go as they please. Everything can be light and wonderful and then -- bam! crushing anxiety or depression. I can be in the darkest place, and then for no discernible reason ... it just lifts. That is exactly what has been driving me crazy all this time. That is why I've decided to try the concentration meditation to at least be able to produce a joyful state with some reasonable certainty.

I'm not arguing with what you are saying at all, everything you say is true. It could be that I have not been aware enough to notice what is really going on.
John Hooper, modified 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 5:50 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 5:50 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
Brian Eleven:
The main thrust of the practice is to smile and release any cause of tension, then relax that tension. It sounds a little too simple, which kept me from really trying it for months, but it actually works...for me.


I am amazed that you mentioned smiling, because that is one of the things I am doing in my concentration meditation to produce a pleasurable mental state, and it is really working well. It has only been a few days though, so I'll have to wait and see what are the long-term effects.
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Brian Eleven, modified 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 6:23 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/23/11 6:23 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 221 Join Date: 9/14/10 Recent Posts
John,
I know this sounds simplistic, but try always smiling, not just when sitting. Think of it as mindfulness of your mouth!emoticon It just relaxes the mind and eases suffering. Other people smile back at me, which also improves my mood.
I've also found forgiving myself and others helps me to relax throughout my day. If someone cuts me off and I get upset, I forgive them, then I forgive myself for getting upset. I've found this to, again, relax me and help ease my suffering. I've notice after doing this that by the end of the day I've accumulated Much less tension. I would go through my day becoming more and more tense with each little perceived slight from others. Now I can let these go, to a large extent...and if I remember.
If no one is upsetting me, I forgive myself... for making mistakes, for doing things that hurt me or others, for not being perfect. The idea is to make forgiveness your default response. The site I mentioned has a short article about forgiveness practice, and I received some instruction from Sister Khema, a nun, on the yahoo group.
It's worked very well for me, maybe it could for you. And if not maybe it will lead to something that will.

Metta,
Brian.
John Hooper, modified 12 Years ago at 11/24/11 1:24 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/24/11 1:24 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
Thank you Brian, I have joined the Yahoo Group you suggested, so I am hopeful to have the same positive experiences you have had. Yes, why not smile all the time! It feels good, and it makes others feel good as well. It will make a very excellent mindfulness practice throughout the day, so thank you again for the idea. I hope to learn more through the group.
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Oliver Myth, modified 12 Years ago at 11/25/11 2:17 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/25/11 2:08 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 143 Join Date: 6/10/11 Recent Posts
John Hooper:
I am being very honest when I say that the good and bad periods seem to come and go as they please. Everything can be light and wonderful and then -- bam! crushing anxiety or depression. I can be in the darkest place, and then for no discernible reason ... it just lifts. That is exactly what has been driving me crazy all this time. That is why I've decided to try the concentration meditation to at least be able to produce a joyful state with some reasonable certainty.

I'm not arguing with what you are saying at all, everything you say is true. It could be that I have not been aware enough to notice what is really going on.


This sounds like a spiritual purification cycle to me. I have found that even when my anxiety or dark nights return I am more and more peaceful and euanimous with it, although it might be worth mentioning that some dark nights can be worse after achieving fruition (MCTB first path). Dark Nights don't even seem all that bad for me recently, but if they come back hard I have to be prepared.

Work when it's good, work when it's bad. Always be ready to up the ante at a moments notice! We don't make spiritual progress by being lazy!

I like Brians most recent advice too. Smiling is a huge stress reliever.

Oliver


Edit:
John Hooper:

That is why, over these many decades, I have tried everything. I haven't been desperate for more beautiful moments, I have been trying to escape the darkness, fear, and endless anxiety. Sometimes it happens, and it is all gone like it never existed, and I feel normal. But then it is back. Maybe I should try to recreate those extraordinary moments, when the world is changed, lighted from within, and all problems have ceased. Maybe that is stream entry.


Consider that maybe you've already had stream entry. Fruitions are hard to spot and when not actively practicing vipassana might not arise for weeks/months at a time. The bolded part above seems to suggest to me that you have been in equanimity territory quite a few times. Maybe instead of valuing the the high experiences where everything seems different one should find a more inclusive practice that includes the ordinary peacefulness of daily life...? Also, those high states can become a lot more subtle and peaceful during certain stages, however that doesn't make the dark nights any more pleasant.
John Hooper, modified 12 Years ago at 11/25/11 6:05 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/25/11 6:05 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
Olyver Mith:
This sounds like a spiritual purification cycle to me. I have found that even when my anxiety or dark nights return I am more and more peaceful and euanimous with it, although it might be worth mentioning that some dark nights can be worse after achieving fruition (MCTB first path). Dark Nights don't even seem all that bad for me recently, but if they come back hard I have to be prepared.


I used to think I just suffered inexplicable bouts of depression, because I knew nothing of all this. I do not know what you mean be "fruition" though, because I am new to the lingo here. Over the decades, I have learned to handle these Dark Nights. For a long time I reacted with panic and avoidance, but after decades I no longer try to escape. I try to examine them, go into them, look with an open mind.

Olyver Mith:
Consider that maybe you've already had stream entry. Fruitions are hard to spot and when not actively practicing vipassana might not arise for weeks/months at a time. The bolded part above seems to suggest to me that you have been in equanimity territory quite a few times. Maybe instead of valuing the the high experiences where everything seems different one should find a more inclusive practice that includes the ordinary peacefulness of daily life...? Also, those high states can become a lot more subtle and peaceful during certain stages, however that doesn't make the dark nights any more pleasant.


Please explain "fruitions" for me. If stream entry can happen spontaneously to someone very young, then I think it is possible that it has happened more than once, maybe. Certainly I was in equanimity for a while after my lifelong anxiety (that started after the possible stream entry experiences) -- back then I kept describing myself as being free. I was free. Not just free from anxiety, but really free.

I was very detached however. In my freedom, I realized that I had become indifferent to the suffering of others, even those close to me. I went to someone who told me that I could stay free and indifferent, but that I there was another step I needed to take. I needed to come back, open my heart, feel, and live in the real world. He said this would be a painful process.

That was the end of detachment and equanimity for me, and then the anxiety came back, then more Dark Night. Instead of detached peace, I have suffering, but also an increasingly open heart. My detached peace would have probably vanished anyway.

I'm not really sure about any of this.
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Oliver Myth, modified 12 Years ago at 11/26/11 3:00 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/26/11 2:45 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 143 Join Date: 6/10/11 Recent Posts
Ah. This is interesting. If you want to read more on fruitions then I would read the entire chapter called MCTB The Progress of Insight in Daniel Ingram's book, Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha.

Basically it is a short moment where the mind has a very spacious awareness and then shortly 'blips' out of reality for half a second or so, with nothing to find in the gap. It is something that can happen very naturally. After one has had this experience (on accident or not) they tend to go thru spiritual purification cycles automatically. Some meditators will practice for months or years to try and get a fruition.

If it happened, it happened, if not then not. It shouldn't be that big of a deal to know if you did right now (but maybe interesting to know whats happening if it happens later).

John Hooper:
I was very detached however. In my freedom, I realized that I had become indifferent to the suffering of others, even those close to me. I went to someone who told me that I could stay free and indifferent, but that I there was another step I needed to take. I needed to come back, open my heart, feel, and live in the real world. He said this would be a painful process.

That was the end of detachment and equanimity for me, and then the anxiety came back, then more Dark Night. Instead of detached peace, I have suffering, but also an increasingly open heart. My detached peace would have probably vanished anyway.


Ah. These are bittersweet words. I have had to deal with my heart opening up (as it relates to me) and some suffering that came with it, but at the same time I think it has let me see the world as it really is, and allowed me to interact with people as they really are. It was either take the dive and explore some more or continue to stagnate and feel this lingering guilt for not taking it to the next level.

If I had to look for a sign of progress and happiness that is consistant over time (so that I am not floundering about while waiting for dark nights to end/so I can be purposeful no matter how I feel), I would say I am at my best during the times when I am authentic and aiming for what is best for myself and everyone around me, even if I'm anxious or feeling unpleasant body sensations. I really, really want what is best for people and I'm not afraid to suffer occasionally for it (a suffering which seems to decrease over time as I adapt). Does that make me naieve? Maybe, but I'm happy with it and it seems wholesome to me : ).

There is also something about acting naieve and authentic which allows one to really learn and be impacted from ones experiences on a deep level. This in itself is very rewarding. I know that I'm developing myself instead of developing masks to wear in front of people.

It also provides a chance to use personal intellegence (logical/emotional/social intellegence) to it's fullest and be okay with it if I end up wrong. I was raised in an intellectual family, so I tend to think this way. Being open and accepting of naieveness is a kind of fearlessness to act and be confident. Cause if I'm wrong, guess what? I got something valuable out of it for next time.

You will get a lot of opinions around here and a lot to learn. I hope find something useful : )
Oliver
This Good Self, modified 12 Years ago at 11/27/11 3:23 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/27/11 3:16 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 946 Join Date: 3/9/10 Recent Posts
The answer to anxiety is to not indulge in it.

Unless the fear is extreme, it's possible to choose just not continue with the bodily reaction. But no one believes this! Instead they use all manner of special techniques to treat it.

At some level, when anxiety continues beyond a few seconds, it is because we allow it to continue. And we allow it because we believe it has meaning and so shouldn't be interfered with.

Fear is caused by certain thoughts. These thoughts are about expectancy of psychological or physical pain. eg. "I might get bitten by a dog if I walk this way". Well if that's true, then certainly I need to be tense, don't I? I might need to be able to run away quickly if it appears. The whole thing about anxiety rests on this one philosophical question: Do thoughts create reality?

So do they? Do thoughts such as "I might get bitten by the dog" cause the dog to bite you? My extensive experience tells me "yes, they do".

But don't try to stop the thoughts, and don't try to replace them with positive thoughts. Just stop the body reacting and realize that the body is creating further trouble when it reacts like that, because it gives credence to the thoughts that created it in the first place.

No one needs a special spiritual path, all that's needed is to overcome fear. Fear is the only impediment to growth in all aspects of life, I've realized. And guess what? This is my own experience over many years - I didn't read it anywhere! Came up with it all on my own! Fear is the software of the ego. Fear is all the ego has to work with. Fear is the only thing that holds it in place.
John Hooper, modified 12 Years ago at 11/28/11 11:32 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/28/11 11:30 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
C C C:
The answer to anxiety is to not indulge in it.


I wouldn't argue that you are wrong, but I can tell you, after decades of anxiety, that:

1. Facing my fears
2. Refusing to indulge
3. Distraction
4. Just about anything else

didn't work for all of my anxiety. Some of it just seemed to be physically or neurologically based. I used to describe it as feeling like adrenaline was just being dumped into my bloodstream. However, now that I've been meditating again my anxiety has subsided. The next time it comes up I will be sure to try what you suggest. What would be the best way to work with a free-floating dread? I was reading Krishnamurti long ago, and he said that all fear and anxiety comes from thought, and that such thought needed to be examined. The trouble has been that I often can't find a thought that is causing my anxiety, or the anxiety simply jumps from thought to thought, refusing to subside.
This Good Self, modified 12 Years ago at 11/28/11 6:29 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/28/11 6:17 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 946 Join Date: 3/9/10 Recent Posts
Right, because a lot of the time the anxiety-causing thoughts are subconscious or pre-conscious. (Pre-conscious just means that you can identify them if you look hard enough). So you just have this feeling that's very uncomfortable.

Since you often can't access the causative thought, remember you can change subconscious thought patterns by altering what your body is doing, and by altering your moment to moment behaviours.

This can be done by asking "if I was a really relaxed and peaceful person, how would I be right now?" then behaving that way in all your small daily actions. This shuts down the offending negative thoughts in the subconscious. The answer to the question may come in the form of: "well I'd relax my shoulders for starters" or "I'd go and clean the house" or "I'd switch off the tv" or "I'd switch on the tv"...whatever it is.

Sometimes guys make the mistake of trying to shut down social anxiety by changing their body in the wrong way, eg. standing up extra tall and puffing the chest out etc. which is actually the opposite of what you'd do if you were confident. So you really have to find the answer to the question and not assume confident = physically big (or great hair or cool car etc). Trying to be *something better* will reinforce that your natural self isn't good enough, so the cycle feeds in the wrong way.

Like Adyashanti says, "take the backwards step".

One of the early effects of doing this properly is that you'll occasionally get a massive surge of anxiety, more than you'd ever had before. That's the ego trying to reassert itself. Ignore it. Go back to the question "if I was...".
This Good Self, modified 12 Years ago at 11/28/11 7:40 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/28/11 7:24 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 946 Join Date: 3/9/10 Recent Posts
The climate change debate is an interesting study in anxiety.

The scientific evidence is supposed to be pretty compelling that man's activity has buggered the climate, so why deny it?

Simply because if you start believing it on a mass scale, you make it true. Next thing, Armegeddon. So yes the scientists might be very accurate and clever, but that's no reason to believe it. Just acting as though everything is fine could be quite a useful approach to cooling the planet back to its right level.

Climate change deniers are possibly a little more aware (unconsciously) that fearful emotions create the thing that is feared. Climate change believers are strict scientists who have no idea how thoughts create reality (they believe their own thoughts and emotions, just like a phobic does).

Science isn't really scientific anyway. The most strictly controlled experiments can be made to go this way or that, depending on who is conducting it (observer effect).

When people say "the figures are incorrect" or "it's a tax grab" or "Scientist x has found this or that is true"... all this is beside the point.
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katy steger,thru11615 with thanks, modified 12 Years ago at 11/28/11 10:10 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/28/11 10:09 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 1740 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
The trouble has been that I often can't find a thought that is causing my anxiety, or the anxiety simply jumps from thought to thought, refusing to subside.


Hi John - did you see this video posted recently on the DhO? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zqrpKUTMXgY
Check out 1hour 26minute point. That may give you an encouraging and different take on your mind. The whole video is interesting.

[edit: name change]
John Hooper, modified 12 Years ago at 11/29/11 9:12 PM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/29/11 9:12 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
C C C:
This can be done by asking "if I was a really relaxed and peaceful person, how would I be right now?" then behaving that way in all your small daily actions. This shuts down the offending negative thoughts in the subconscious. The answer to the question may come in the form of: "well I'd relax my shoulders for starters" or "I'd go and clean the house" or "I'd switch off the tv" or "I'd switch on the tv"...whatever it is


I'll give that a try the next time I have anxiety. For now it is pretty much gone. Maybe the help I have been getting here is really working. If it stays away, I would have to say that my switch to concentration meditation has made a real difference, but who really knows.

katy steger:
Check out 1hour 26minute point. That may give you an encouraging and different take on your mind. The whole video is interesting.


What do you mean? That is when he is talking about Eckhart Tolle, right?
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katy steger,thru11615 with thanks, modified 12 Years ago at 11/30/11 8:41 AM
Created 12 Years ago at 11/30/11 8:40 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 1740 Join Date: 10/1/11 Recent Posts
What do you mean? That is when he is talking about Eckhart Tolle, right?

Yes. You mentioned anxiety/fear that does not subside despite your practice efforts. There are a few examples given in Murphy's lecture of persons whose darkest nights (i.e., perceived visits by Mara's daughters, then armies; perceived feelings of extreme anxiety and self-loathing, etc) have converted into bliss and liberation*. I mention this in consideration of what the mental state of anxiety-fear may lead to: the perception of being liberating.

Best wishes in your practice!




*if Murphy is referring to here the interhemispheric intrusion hypothesis (and I don't remember hearing these words, which describe a hypothesis proposed by his mentor Persinger), then a caution for certain mental conditions and certain meditation techniques is offered in the last sentence of Persinger's summary for Percept Mot Skills. 1992 Dec;75(3 Pt 2):1308-10.
John Hooper, modified 4 Years ago at 12/16/19 12:09 PM
Created 4 Years ago at 12/16/19 12:08 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
Eight years later, there is very little of this kind of anxiety now.  There was advice to watch the causal chain, to see where thought asserted fear.  It was not seen for a long time, but then there it was.  A feeling arose that was "fear" and the mind went from there.  But was it fear?  No, it was only a feeling.  It honestly was not fear.  Further tests came along eventually, and instead of running, all forms of fear, dispair, and emptyness were sat with and passively but attentively watched.  Great curiousity and a true desire to know, really, "What is this feeling?"  Without the stories of the self, each was only a physical sensation, or impotent thought.  At last, these feelings were invited, their arising was desired for further investigation.  Exactly the same feelings that induced panic are no longer even interesting.

Fear is avoidance.  Be very curious and sincere.  Only deal with exactly what is there, not conceptual thought and stories.  Embrace darkness and emptiness without prejudice.

Thanks to Daniel for this site, those who helped, and all who contribute.
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Linda ”Polly Ester” Ö, modified 4 Years ago at 12/16/19 2:01 PM
Created 4 Years ago at 12/16/19 2:01 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 7134 Join Date: 12/8/18 Recent Posts
Wow, this was great news. Thanks for sharing! 
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Siavash ', modified 4 Years ago at 12/16/19 2:12 PM
Created 4 Years ago at 12/16/19 2:12 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 1678 Join Date: 5/5/19 Recent Posts
John Hooper:
Eight years later, there is very little of this kind of anxiety now.  There was advice to watch the causal chain, to see where thought asserted fear.  It was not seen for a long time, but then there it was.  A feeling arose that was "fear" and the mind went from there.  But was it fear?  No, it was only a feeling.  It honestly was not fear.  Further tests came along eventually, and instead of running, all forms of fear, dispair, and emptyness were sat with and passively but attentively watched.  Great curiousity and a true desire to know, really, "What is this feeling?"  Without the stories of the self, each was only a physical sensation, or impotent thought.  At last, these feelings were invited, their arising was desired for further investigation.  Exactly the same feelings that induced panic are no longer even interesting.

Fear is avoidance.  Be very curious and sincere.  Only deal with exactly what is there, not conceptual thought and stories.  Embrace darkness and emptiness without prejudice.

Thanks to Daniel for this site, those who helped, and all who contribute.

Glad that you had success with anxiety.

I was a very relaxed person for most of my life, but 6 years ago something happened that caused a very intense anxiety attack, that I really thought that I was dying. I couldn't breathe, and my whole body was very tense and stiff.., couldn't eat or swallow.. . After staying in hospital for two days I guess, that passed, but after that, I started to have anxiety attacks, and for about three years, most days I had one or more episodes of that. That was the main cause that I started looking for meditation. Luckily I found Shinzen, and doing his Focus In techniques for a few months, helped me come back and be able to live with this problem. I still have that to some extent, but those techniques gave a very powerful tools for dealing with anxiety. I think Shinzen has a lot to offer for anyone that is suffering from similar problems.
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Laurel Carrington, modified 4 Years ago at 12/18/19 10:56 AM
Created 4 Years ago at 12/18/19 10:56 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 439 Join Date: 4/7/14 Recent Posts
So glad to hear it! I can say the same. Anxiety and fear used to be the defining experience of my life, but not any more. 
John Hooper, modified 3 Years ago at 12/4/20 11:54 PM
Created 3 Years ago at 12/4/20 11:54 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
Shinzen is an outstanding teacher and I have used his methods extensively.  Daniel, Kenneth, and Shinzen were definitely the resources that worked for me.  It was such a relief to find clear instructions, with explanations, that actually worked.
Mathew Poskus, modified 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 4:14 AM
Created 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 4:14 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
Hi John Hooper ,I have same issues ,anxiety and panick attacks ,crippling anxiety ,with some pressure esspecialy in forehead ,and like something just feel like injecting adrenaline into bloodstream...how did you dealt with it ?
John Hooper, modified 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 12:47 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 10:30 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 43 Join Date: 11/21/11 Recent Posts
First, always see a doctor to make sure it isn't a physical problem.  If it is not, then the next time any panic arises, focus 100% on what is actually being felt.  In other words, don't react to the feeling, or attempt to avoid it.  Move towards it.  Be interested in whatever is happening.  Invite it in, then take a closer look.

There was advice to watch the causal chain, to see where thought asserted fear.  It was not seen for a long time, but then there it was.  A feeling arose that was "fear" and the mind went from there.  But was it fear?  No, it was only a feeling.  It honestly was not fear.  Further tests came along eventually, and instead of running, all forms of fear, dispair, and emptyness were sat with and passively but attentively watched.  Great curiousity and a true desire to know, really, "What is this feeling?"  Without the stories of the self, each was only a physical sensation, or impotent thought.  At last, these feelings were invited, their arising was desired for further investigation.  Exactly the same feelings that induced panic are no longer even interesting.

​​​​​​​Remember that panic is not two things.  Sensations arising do not cause panic, there is a gap, an interpretation, and then thought responds.  The thought is the fear, not the sensation .  The thought and panic are one.  The sensation is harmless, it has been experienced a hundred times.  Like an allergic reaction, where the body harms itself overreacting to harmless substances, thought is overreacting with panic to a harmless sensation.  A harmless sensation has no energy of its own, panic is fueled by avoidance.  Don't avoid.  Be very curious and sincere.  Only deal with exactly what is there, not conceptual thought, stories and projections.  Embrace fear, darkness and emptiness without prejudice.  Like the self, when you question it to the bottom, it will be empty.
Mathew Poskus, modified 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 12:32 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 12:28 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
Yeah I have Infection called Nematomorpha ate by accident grasshoper as a child ,this gonna sound crazy ( I was student in microbiology) ,I googled my microscopic photos ,found in all around world people with this same infection (they call it morgellons )my friends also through years developed anxiety (parasitic infections gives anxiety,psychosis shizophrenia ) ,I gave it to them ,they had to stop drinking caffeine ,Shinzen also said "crawling"sensations (well Shinzen is not scientist,but u can feel crawling if there is obviously something crawling),talked with molecular biologist ,they were found in humans ,they didnt make any test for it ,they produce somekind of protein to cause constant anxiety,just what caught my eye ,like adrenaline being injected into bloodstream ,pressure in forehead corresponds to anxiety and panic ,I've meditated for ten years now,I cant eat alot ,like u said ,they missed this parasitoid ... Because I meditated for ten years ,what I noticed this parasitoid cause false ego in mind ,like projection like u are there standing in some fantasy or whatnan,absolute brainwashing bullshit..This creature is bizzare shit. My meditation was caused by battling this widespreaded not really recognised infection.U can feel bassically nothing just anxiety wich can seem has no real reason some presssure in forehead for tens of years.This Nectonematoid induces suicide,technically it doesnt kill ,just makes host kill itself ,by hijacking nervous system and realising proteins wich cause feelings of danger ,anxiety.  Wonder if old dude Buddha himself didnt have it .Cause he wanted to not live anymore and never.Buddhism is kinda how Hamilton said cosmic suicide club ...wonder has something to do with it.Kundalini snake in a back.Thats where it resides in my body since from that damn bug I got infected.Talked to people they said the same,its in the back.Its very contagious ,there is no research on it ,no scientist I know works on them.Now I heard Shinzen said crawling sensations and in interview seem to little bit go offrails .No wonder why no medicine works for none of mental health issues and they dont know what cause.Well have to deal with anxiety and for now forget whats causing my reality. emoticon sorry for language fucking sucks.As a child when I got this infection I learned to drop desires  and avoid ego intuitivly ,bizzare thats what Buddha talked about . So just short story whats going in not just my life.Its actually a very long story .BTW thnxs gonna look really close to you response and try to use it.
Mathew Poskus, modified 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 12:36 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 12:36 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
Also u dont expierence anxiety anymore?
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Chris M, modified 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 1:03 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 1:03 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

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Mathew Poskus, modified 7 Months ago at 7/18/23 4:43 AM
Created 7 Months ago at 7/13/23 2:01 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
Chris M oh yeah I know,problem is they didnt examined it ,as I understood from my friend ,they took 2weeks to examine and left it as a skin disease... they dont know what it is ,all of morgellons people feel crawling worms in body,I asked some of them if they can use microscope and find black juvenile Nematomorpha ,they found it .https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=aIlPfFe3JrY ,i filmed this from my body. So these ones didnt show dna nor larvae nor egss doesnt show,its unknown parasite first in the world most unknown,doesnt have genome  .So my Proffesor said sorry without dna we cant help ,those in body probably will stay there,i cant take them out ofcourse.And there is no scientist working on this.Even little of malaria infection can cause severe anxiety ,deppression,psychosis.
Mathew Poskus, modified 7 Months ago at 7/18/23 1:54 PM
Created 7 Months ago at 7/18/23 4:45 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
Well Taoist meditation I find really interesting and helpful with Anxiety .They call emptiness forgetting and fasting of mind and heart.https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zuowang for anyone who struggles with anxiety ,I found it helpful.
And focusing on soft breath.ZHUANQI.
They dont talk about suffering .Just to seek harmony with nature.Nature is all there is.Resonates more to me.In my opinion.
Mathew Poskus, modified 6 Months ago at 8/6/23 5:47 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 8/6/23 5:47 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
https://www.skepticspath.org/podcast/guided-meditation-on-pleasure/ u might want to check this
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Papa Che Dusko, modified 6 Months ago at 8/6/23 7:20 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 8/6/23 7:20 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 2639 Join Date: 3/1/20 Recent Posts
I didn't work with Taoism as such but did work with Aikido Ki-breathing which kind of follows same principle. Center in the "one point" and balance with the Universal/Nature. 

I did this in 2009 prior to finding Buddhist Shamatha in 2010. 

The Ki breathing indeed help me a lot in shedding away my ptsd paranoia which crippled me for many years. 

The daily Ki breathing meditation (30 min morning and 30 min evening sits) did result in 5th Jhana which was the main healer for my paranoia as it felt like a "vast safe space" where nothing bad can happen to me. 

However even though I did enjoy this Ki breathing , at one stage I felt suffering creeping in again. Not paranoia but unsatisfactory nature of things. And this is where I looked for another meditation technique. And here I am today emoticon 

​​​​​​​Its ok to test different techniques and approaches. 

Best wishes! 

p.s. oh I'm still subject to anxiety btw. What goes around, comes around. emoticon 
Mathew Poskus, modified 6 Months ago at 8/8/23 10:03 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 8/8/23 6:39 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
U can also if u have spare 20$ buy usb microscope ,look if u dont have "morgellons" ,its a parasitic disease ,not really known ,as I know its all over USA (what happened in florida years ago this disease was found ,said its skin disease and left it)  I have it also,by accident ,I was working with my Proffesor ,I knew what i had ,why anxiety restlesness ,paranoia, I got this infection as a child, well for fun i though i can search my microscopic photos ,I searched over and over I found people with same photos as mine, now its contagious I get it ,I was wondering how fucking people around me started to develop paranoia anxiety and alot of them suicided,its caused by infection of Gordian worm(suicide inducing).I ate by accident grashopper  as a child, now this parasitoid lives in my back or sleeping snake "Kundalini" .Anxiety restlessnes paranoia its parasitic disease simptoms. Its not "spiritual" ,"karma" or any of that crap. And its has no medicine.Probably from same shit Buddha suffered too.As a child i learned to abandon craving any desires or ego ,by intuition ,just to feel free and safe .Im not telling stories from my ass people found in USA i know this ,iron dense ,no organ parasite .I found it too.And nobody working on "Morgellons".And there is no scientist researching this parasite.It was found in humans ,japan ,its accident,no test no cure,nothing.It unkillable.So u have to be no desires no ego no nothing,because this parasite reacts ,by injecting some proteins to cause anxiety,u move u get anxiety .Ur nothing dont want anything its doesnt do anything.Or what Schopenhauer called denying "will to live" all this is probably related to this overlooked infection,rocking this world for long long time .Those fibers "morgellons" wich probably u will find ,it because this parasite moults .If u can look with microscope and see if u can find "morgellons" fibers .My friends ,who never meditated expierence blank mind ,emptiness,no desires ,it doesnt look like spiritual path more like progression of the disease .Shinzen Young ,expierences Crawling(i talked about people in "morgellons" with molecular biologist he agreed if u had worms u can feel them),he said Gods Arrow through forehead is enlightment expierence ,I had this expierence ,well its not Arrow that moved through forehead ... I DONT SAY IT'S ABSOLUTE TRUTH THATS ALL THIS SPIRITUALITY RELATES TO OVERLOOKED INFECTION .BUT IT COULD BE JUST THIS.
Before I die i would be really delighted to know is all this circus is caused by mind controlling most unknow parasite.No test show them through operation they were found.Probably it will not be found in near future.
Probably Mother nature tricked as all by one stupid parasitoid would be nothing new.That probably meant human co-evolved with it.
As Nietzche said "what at first glance doesn't look like a absurd has no potency of being of truth".
​​​​​​​
Mathew Poskus, modified 6 Months ago at 8/9/23 5:11 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 8/9/23 5:11 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
P.S.ive been meditating for 10 years.
I have reached jhanas (hardcore ecstacy ,very addictive) through tibetan visualization ,and I think stream entry through tibetan vippasana.
Mathew Poskus, modified 6 Months ago at 8/14/23 6:36 AM
Created 6 Months ago at 8/14/23 5:55 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
It just will turn people into a "malevolent ghost" ,like Noah D i followed his "spiritual path" passive aggressiveness coming out ,its not coming out  ... I ENCOURAGE YOU PEOPLE TAKE MICROSCOPES 20$ usb,CHECK FOR "MORGELLONS" FIBERS. You will probably find .Its all over USA and world.It resides in back muscles(stems everywhere) if this is Kundalini ..it triggers (if not causes) fake ego,unsatisfactoriness,boredom ,restlessnes(parasitic disease simtpoms)(on 4 path they say it vanishes),anxiety,sugar cravings,pressure in forehead (when they get there) ,disgust,misery,fear. CHECK FOR THOSE FIBERS!ITS FROM THIS PARASITE MOULTING. I DID RESEARCH WITH HABILITATED DOCTOR OF BIOMEDICINE SCIENCES!IM NOT JOKING.
Mathew Poskus, modified 5 Months ago at 8/26/23 10:43 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 8/25/23 4:05 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 230 Join Date: 10/24/15 Recent Posts
https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2023-08-10/suicide-rates-continue-to-rise-among-americans
There it goes.
Tore Kersten, modified 5 Months ago at 8/26/23 3:56 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 8/26/23 3:56 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 3 Join Date: 8/24/23 Recent Posts
John, how is your breathing? Nose breather, mouth breather? What is your resting breath frequency over one minute? Something that can cause anxiety on its own and aggravate other causes is low CO2 tolerance. And if that is an issue, that at least is readily trainable. It's just that most breathing modalities actually don't have much basic knowledge about biochemistry of breathing. We get told to inhale through the nose, exhale through the mouth, take DEEEP breaths (by wich people usually mean a lot of gas exchanged per breath), etc. And that often is not a very fruitful strategy, to put it mildly.

CO2 is this paradox thing in the body. Acid/base balance is regulated in real time through CO2 in the body, meaning your drive to breathe is actually triggered because the body wants to offload CO2. There is no O2 monitoring going on in the body, not unless things get really pathological. 
Meaning the feeling of being out of breath is actually the feeling of the body wanting to offload CO2. That is one side of the thing. The other is that oxygen dissasociation from the blood to the cells (where oxygen is used for aerobic energy production) gets worse the more CO2 is expelled. The higher the CO2 levels in the blood, the better the oxygen delivery to the cells. 

And the tolerance of the system to CO2 is trainable - and detrainable. The better the CO2 tolerance in an otherwise healthy human (there are pathologies where CO2 can be a problem), the lower the breath frequency, and the better the oxygen transport process. The lower your CO2 tolerance, the higher your breath frequency, and the more oxygen transport is hampered. The closer the system is to pH being kicked out of balance that way, the closer it is to anxiety and panic on that biochemical level. Again, not the only thing that can trigger that, but you can pull on a shirt from different directions and all the fibers are affected. 

Thing is, of course, that CO2 is the trigger to "feeling out of breath". Meaning, to improve resting and working breath frequency, improve cardio vascular function (the heart pumps blood to transport oxygen and CO2, among other things), etc. one would need to train smartly and progressively with that feeling of being out of breath. That is basically the training weight you wanna get better with to improve breathing.

People can get into a downward spiral with that, always giving in to feeling out of breath, always exhaling more, lowering CO2 tolerance all the time, making the symptoms worse. The reverse is also true, you can turn this around and train in the other direction. That can be done smartly, doesn't need to be constant asphyxia torture chamber bootcamp.

Some common symptoms of low CO2 tolerance are frequent sighing (the body constantly wants big exhales), mouth breathing, snoring, constantly stuffed nose, and, as a result, feeling high strung a lot of the time, although that might be felt to be normal for the person in question. Just where they live.  
Frequent sighing lowers CO2 levels, and over time destabilizes the system on that biochemical level. Habitual mouth breathing alone is ususally indicative of low CO2 tolerance. The mouth has no adaptions to breathing. The hole is too big, CO2 gets offloaded to quickly, levels drop instantly, oxygen dissasociation gets hampered right away. Plus you loose about 40 percent more water. On the inhale the nose has all the filtration stuff, t-cells from the adaptive immune system, etc. On the exhale the nose is too small to excessively offload CO2. So habitual nose breathers are ususally ok-ish with CO2. 

Animals with sweat glands usually only mouth breathe when something is very off. 

The higher your resting breath frequency, the closer your body is to fight or flight. Hyperventilation related panic attacks SEEM to appear out of nowhere to the person, but can actually be detected in the breathing rhythms some time before the event. 

Some people talk about "psycho-metabolic reactivity" in relation to breathing affecting the whole system, not just the nervous system, but the acid/base balance, etc. 

I am not saying this is the one thing that will have an effect here, maybe your breathing is ok-ish (I have yet to meet people where it can't be improved, myself included), but going over all the posts above, this thing seemingly hasn't been adressed yet. 


Again, I am not saying this is the sole issue. But a system with high CO2 tolerance is calmer (compare a resting breath frequency of 8 to 10 nose breaths per minute with 20 to 30 with constant sighing), less likely to go into a biochemically induced panic attack, etc. 

So working on that might improve baseline psycho-metabolic stability, wich might put you in a better place to deal with whatever else is going on, insight related or not. 

I'd be happy to help you with that if you're interested. Again, not promising anything or even saying that this is a part of what's going on for you, but checking that box can easily improve basic bodily wellbeing/stress levels quite a bit.
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Smiling Stone, modified 5 Months ago at 8/26/23 11:06 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 8/26/23 11:06 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 336 Join Date: 5/10/16 Recent Posts
Hey Tore,
Nice post. Maybe you would like to paste it to this thread
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as well or even  expand on your views on the topic, as you are very articulate ...
​​​​​​metta
smiling stone
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Tom Smith, modified 5 Months ago at 8/26/23 12:03 PM
Created 5 Months ago at 8/26/23 12:03 PM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 140 Join Date: 2/17/10 Recent Posts
Meditation doesn't fix everything.  I have had anxiety problems since I was a child.  I have been meditating a lot for many years.  I still have problems with anxiety.  Some things that have helped:

Cognative Behavioral Therapy (CBT) - Very useful and fits in with meditation
Occasional use of valium -  Be careful though.  It can be very addictive
Acceptance - It's just something I have to deal with.

I'm currently experimentings with SSRI drugs, but have not yet found one that worked well or did not have side effects that were worse than the anxiety.

Best book on anxiety I have read -  "My age of anxiety" by Scott Stossel
Tore Kersten, modified 5 Months ago at 8/27/23 1:22 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 8/27/23 1:21 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 3 Join Date: 8/24/23 Recent Posts
Smiling Stone
Hey Tore,
Nice post. Maybe you would like to paste it to this thread
​​​​
as well or even  expand on your views on the topic, as you are very articulate ...
​​​​​​metta
smiling stone

Hey Smiling Stone, 

Thank you. I appreciate the gesture.
About my post, as it occured to me then, I could have a) said nothing b) said something general and likely useless about breathing and anxiety, or 3) actually tried to explain some stuff that still is little known in the mainstream and that I by chance actually know quite a bit about. Fixing that base layer of the bodymind system actually does help with a lot of stuff upstream, for many, many people. But in my experience, it's hit or miss without understanding some of the mechanisms of that bodymind system.
So I went for 3).
I am not much of a writer and english is a second language for me, so that maybe could have been done more to the point and in better style. If that was too long, or too elaborate, or too badly written, I offer my apologies.

Now I have a question. Seeing what conclusions you seem to have come to about me and the reasons why I wrote my post, doubtless also informed by your extensive knowledge about the physiology of breathing and anxiety and what is and isn't necessary in terms of explanation there, and seeing the way you adressed me based on your conclusions, you seem to be a rare individual that is really, deeply embodying metta. I would gladly learn more. Is there somewhere where you go into greater written detail and maybe give more examples regarding loving kindness and self indulgent reponses on the internet? 
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Smiling Stone, modified 5 Months ago at 8/29/23 5:46 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 8/29/23 5:46 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 336 Join Date: 5/10/16 Recent Posts
Hey Tore,
Let me congratulate you on your excellent intuition concerning my abilities in regard to metta, derived from reading only very little material!
Looking for a degree of irony in your comment, I could not find any (except maybe the "self indulgent reponses on the internet", I don't really get the meaning of this last bit ???)... So, if you ar looking for more posts by anyone on the forum, the easiest way is to click on the blue "recent posts" button below their name. There you'll find all the threads he's written on. Also indicated will be if they initiated it (where you might find the most interesting stuff???). For me, I have a couple of practice logs, the Goenka thread and the "Playing with the breath" one that you already visited... There's quite a bit of reading, as I have a tendency to carry on myself... You can also message me on the message board. I try to visit there once in a while as there are no notifications. (Dreamwalker has an even more efficient way through Google but I can't be bothered to find it right now)...

Anyway, welcome on the Dho and all the best with your practice
smiling stone
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Smiling Stone, modified 5 Months ago at 9/1/23 3:58 AM
Created 5 Months ago at 9/1/23 2:17 AM

RE: demotivating anxiety

Posts: 336 Join Date: 5/10/16 Recent Posts
Well, about metta, the first post of my log is spot on!

​​​​​​​[edited the link]