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really big problem.

edited October 2009 in Meditation
Okay im insane. I try to meditate and what I want is Samahdi,

i want un-distracted awareness.
Last night i seriously spent 6 or 7 hours, in the dark, just sitting.
the really big problem was that,
I couldn't escape from my thoughts..
I watch stories, thats my favorite thing to do, SO i watch and listen to thousands of stories, all day long. shows, movies, etc etc...

SO now at night time, you know your mind assimilates what it learned or saw during the day.

My mind is full of these things,
full of fantasies and , possible conclusions to story lines, stuff like that.
I can seriously go into their world, of whatever fantasy it is, I can go there, and it's crystal clear,

the worst part ok, is this, I imagine too far ahead, right now im unemployed, im looking for a job.

So i imagine a place i might want to work,(during meditation) and then i go soooooo far into it, predicting things,

like okay i walk into the place this guy says that, i try to apply there, and then all of a sudden he says something that bothers my ego, so then im fighting to the death,

and how can i get away
maybe i should apply with a fake alias, maybe when i escape to the bahamas,

I will meet a girl in the bahamas, then what do i tell this girl about my past, and then i marry her, ETC ETC..

LOL when i catch myself in mediation, which i always eventually do- im on a friggin tangent light years away from where i began.

my problem i think is, I cant meditate right when i have unresolved matters in my mind (like i need a job, my father is about to die, and i haven't talked to him in years, my mom is getting old I have huge debt to her, I have old friends I owe money to, I have the bank i owe money too secretly...) etc etc, thats fkin BS !!!!, I want to meditate,
but with all these things i feel like just freaking out..
help me out here

Comments

  • NirvanaNirvana aka BUBBA   `     `     ` `     ` Outa Range Fridays thru Sundays South Carolina, USA Veteran
    edited August 2009
    TheFound wrote: »

    I try to meditate and what I want is Samahdi,

    i want un-distracted awareness.


    Whew, TheFound! It's only natural to want fruition right away. We see something we want and we want it right away. But it doesn't work that way. It seems to me from what you've written that at least you're not trying to fool yourself. You realize what you're doing. That's something right there that you've got going for yourself. You're young. Even us older kids still have lots to learn.

    Periodically (to say the least) we all have to take a good look at humanity's Spiritual Giants, such as the Lord Buddha, and really examine our lives in light of their teachings. As Socrates once said, an unexamined life is not one worth living, for all the fears and uncertainties we face.

    I believe the Four Noble Truths address all of the concerns and preoccupations you've outlined above with such repercussive articulation. Just take another look at them, and another look, and another look. You have several lifetimes in which to do it, too, so there's absolutely no rush. If you really don't believe them to be Summations of Truth, give up on Buddhism and forget about any meditating. First there must be a firm foundation in order for anything genuine to flourish.

    Ah, the Four Noble Truths about the basic unsatisfactoriness of things as contrasted with our creaturely appetites!

    The question is whether there is a better way. Or, put another way: Whose karma do you wish to follow, the broad or the narrow? To take the path that leads to another and then another and then onto yet more and evermore complicated and duplicitous paths? Or simply to pursue the Real rather than the Unreal?

    I believe that intellectually there's no issue. The problem for ALL of us is how in the world will we pull it off?

    Fondly,

    Nirvy
  • LincLinc Community Instigator Detroit Moderator
    edited August 2009
    Patience. You're not going to get better at meditation through a marathon 6-hour session. If you want to really go at it, how about 3x a day for 20 minutes? Do that for 6 months and see where it gets you.

    (Jeez I wish I could get myself to do that...)
  • edited August 2009
    TheFound wrote: »
    what I want is Samahdi

    Samahdi is the release of this verbal spew your brain churns out non-stop. Right now this spew is a major nutriment for you. You are consuming it like an addict and it is consuming you. You can't get enough of it and the films you watch provide even more fuel. With each imagined scenario, you re-enforce who and what you make yourself be, in an endless universe of possibilities.

    It may be hard to believe but at the centre of this vortex is stillness. It sounds like at a deep level you are sick and tired of carrying this stuff and being its victim.

    Jhana is the finest path to samahdi IMHO. Worth investigating.

    Namaste
  • fivebellsfivebells Veteran
    edited August 2009
    [FONT=Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif]Somewhere in this process, you will come face-to-face with the sudden and shocking realization that you are completely crazy. Your mind is a shrieking, gibbering madhouse on wheels barreling pell-mell down the hill, utterly out of control and hopeless. No problem. You are not crazier than you were yesterday. It has always been this way, and you just never noticed. You are also no crazier than everybody else around you. The only real difference is that you have confronted the situation; they have not. So they still feel relatively comfortable. That does not mean that they are better off. Ignorance may be bliss, but it does not lead to liberation. So don't let this realization unsettle you. It is a milestone actually, a sign of real progress. The very fact that you have looked at the problem straight in the eye means that you are on your way up and out of it. [/FONT]
  • cazcaz Veteran
    edited August 2009
    Patience rome wasnt built in day, your noticing how busy your mind is practise bringing your attention back to the object of focus it gets easier with practise.
  • edited August 2009
    okay
  • edited September 2009
    TheFound wrote: »

    LOL when i catch myself in mediation, which i always eventually do- im on a friggin tangent light years away from where i began.


    The meditation takes you where. You do not take it there. And yours is taking you further than most would hope, to a place of dreams. You do not wish to think about work in meditation, for it is a worry, but the meditation wishes you to think about work, for this is the prison you must escape so that you are not a tugboat frothing about in the fast river, but a swan gliding into a placid lake.

    There are those who would say, you should be able to find peace in any situation, and that is the idea of meditation. To them I say: Why do you then stop meditating?

    However, if you are anxious, and looking for instant relaxation, then you must talk or humm whilst you meditate. This quietens your inner voice. But go smoke some drugs, or something and you get the same thing. There are many ways to relax. The true idea of meditation was always to leave the inner voice with nothing to say. And you cannot do this without listening to it first. But many people will say "my inner voice has too many words to say", and then think it just foolish blabber. When it only has too much to say because you are not listening with both ears. But I say, listen to your inner voice. And follow it to escape your prisons. Once you have escaped your prisons, peace will be upon you, and you will be in a waking dream.

    In other words, do not accept your prison by meditating inside it. Escape your prison by meditating towards the keys. Escape your body, by escaping what holds you to body. Meditate in order to bring to surface of which that holds you to it. And truly if something does hold you, it will come to surface, and not necessarily be pleasant, when the prison that holds you, is also one that secures you. But if you listen to your inner voice with both ears, one ear will know a prison, the other will know the key. And both will work together to get you out.

    To escape the prison of body, one must escape the prisons that imprison body. And these my friend, involve not just you, but everyone, for it is everyone who imprisons you, and you who imprison them. Many a monk, escape everyone by escaping the body of everyone. But by escaping everyone, they imprison everyone, who are also they. Inaction, is an escape from everyone. We must inact everyone, by means of actions, directed from where the meditation leads us.

    Peace to you.
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    edited September 2009
    The meditation takes you where. You do not take it there.
    Incorrect.
    you control the Meditation, it does not control you. Therefore, meditation is an exercise in governing the thought process, it is not an exercise in 'losing yourself in it'....
    And yours is taking you further than most would hope, to a place of dreams. You do not wish to think about work in meditation, for it is a worry, but the meditation wishes you to think about work, for this is the prison you must escape so that you are not a tugboat frothing about in the fast river, but a swan gliding into a placid lake.
    I'm afraid you have an incorrect view on meditation.
    What you speak of, is VISUALISATION...
    meditation does not want to do anything. If your meditation is running away with you, then it's not meditation.
    There are those who would say, you should be able to find peace in any situation, and that is the idea of meditation. To them I say: Why do you then stop meditating?
    Nobody here would say anything of the kind.
    However, if you are anxious, and looking for instant relaxation, then you must talk or humm whilst you meditate. This quietens your inner voice. But go smoke some drugs, or something and you get the same thing. There are many ways to relax.
    Buddhism strongly advises against any intoxicants and we would request you do not encourage or advise this either.

    It is both unskilful, and as you are probably aware, illegal.
  • edited September 2009
    Thankyou for correcting me on all my errors. It's good to have someone here to make sure everything is adherent to the buddhist teachings. I apologise if I lead anyone astray with my own perception of meditation. Thank God buddhism is not illegal. Then we would have no way to relax!
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    edited September 2009
    Well, as this is a Buddhist forum, that's the principal purpose.
    And thank Buddhism God isn't illegal, either.
    We're quite open to all manner of different theological viewpoints here, even if we might at any point disagree with them.
    :)
  • SimonthepilgrimSimonthepilgrim Veteran
    edited September 2009
    Meditation is a very big tent. The more I have practised in different forms, Christian, Buddhist, Muslim and humanistic, the less I have been able to say what is and is not meditation.

    "Who seeps a room as for Thy laws,
    Makes that and the action fine,"
    George Herbert tells us: every action can become meditation.
  • edited September 2009
    word up Simon! Again you surprise me..haha! Although both sides I see points. It is hard to teach one what cannot be taught, so we teach them with structures, so that one may find footing on that structure, and some day fall off accidentally onto another plane of existence, that only they can know and feel, according to what is known and felt to them

    As a twig floating down a river. It does not know whether to go upstream or downstream. But it goes downstream because that is where the water runs. But if the water were not running, neither would it. The water all ends out in the empty sea, and then rises out of that void, to fall again in a new place, like a new soul. But the twig, it does not know itself, other than it is running with the water, running with fear, and looking for a tree branch to sweep it out of the water, and back from where it came. The ride is fun, but of water it was not born, so not one with the water does it feel. But to say one day. I know I am a twig, but in this moment I will be water, for it is water that is carrying me. I feel this can somewhat signify meditation. But of course my view is humbly, a beginners view, like a stab in the darkness of my mind.
  • NirvanaNirvana aka BUBBA   `     `     ` `     ` Outa Range Fridays thru Sundays South Carolina, USA Veteran
    edited September 2009
    word up Simon! Again you surprise me..haha! Although both sides I see points. It is hard to teach one what cannot be taught, so we teach them with structures, so that one may find footing on that structure, and some day fall off accidentally onto another plane of existence, that only they can know and feel, according to what is known and felt to them.

    Ah, Youngtiger-oldgoat! You remind me of William Blake- Sometimes putting substance over form, sometimes form over substance! Both are needed!

    I find your writing riveting.

    I read you as a Blake, a Whitman! Please say more!

    Nirvy
  • edited September 2009
    thanks...I feel funny with compliments. I am not used to them. Stop expanding head! Stop it. I am not used to them but I am surely used to an expanding head. I think words are like music. So I try to play a mix of classical and new age to suit all tastes. But it is hard to please all. Some people like how I write and some people hate it, and that is not anyone's fault but the twist of toungue and flavour, and the drum of ear behaviour. I cannot get involved in too many threads here, as I garner too much attention away from the original purpose with my free thinking tangenting, which is not always alligned with my purpose. I do not come into anothers house and change the food they like to eat. I eat their food with grace that they are letting me sit at their table. Even now I take this thread away from its original purpose, which I always do to each thread by accident no matter which forum I go, so consciously perhaps you or I, should keep the matter of writing to private messages, and I will keep my writing saved for when I can feel safe to reach into the platter, with good sense, and good tact. Thanks again Nirvy. Peace.
  • GlowGlow Veteran
    edited September 2009
    Buddhism has a huge diversity of meditation practices, some of which require visualization and some of which do not. In the classical teachings, it is said there are 84,000 doors to nibbana. In the West people tend to teach only seated vipassana, and possibly metta and walking meditation. Even within vipassana, metta and walking meditation practices, there is variety.

    One of my favorite alternatives to sitting was one I learned from my first teacher (who practiced the Sangharaj Nikaya school in the hill tracts of Bangladesh). It's called "lake meditation." Try this: Lie down on a comfortable surface, close your eyes, and imagine a beautiful lake on a late summer's day still and calm, but with the sky ad surrounding wilderness reflected in it. Now imagine being the lake itself; it accepts the reflection of the passing clouds and surrounding trees and birds, the ripples made by the wind, but remains unchanged by any of it. It is still the same lake. In this same way, relate to your thoughts/moods/emotions/sensations as ripples and reflections on the surface of the water from moment to moment. You remain the lake, calm and unaffected underneath it all.

    This is a very helpful technique for cultivating a less grasping relationship to our thoughts and emotions and passing sounds/feelings. It can also be thought of as an adjunct practice to the "choiceless awareness" many teachers advocate.
  • fivebellsfivebells Veteran
    edited September 2009
    There is a huge diversity, but one way or another, they all come back to the anapanasati practice the Buddha did under the Bodhi tree.
  • jhanajhana Explorer
    edited September 2009
    Hello TheFound,

    Hope this helps in some small way - if not, please discard.

    I want to meditate,
    but with all these things i feel like just freaking out..
    help me out here


    Um, so do you think all the reading/watching every available moment, mentally playing the parts of characters, could be avoidance behaviour because your own life freaks you out too much? (As opposed to your life getting so bad because you were too busy with the stories beforehand?)

    If the former, you wanted to escape from the stuff of your own life, and now you want to meditate to (perhaps) get a handle on things, your meditation keeps escaping back into the pretend. Which is a bit ironic.

    I try to meditate and what I want is Samahdi, i want un-distracted awareness...

    Can you - for the time being at least - STOP watching the movies and reading the stories altogether? Your mind should quieten down pretty quickly if you're not feeding it nonsense.
  • PalzangPalzang Veteran
    edited September 2009
    A little something to help you on your way, Found:

    THOUGHTS ARE NOT VIPS

    Usually, if you have mental chatter, you call it your thoughts. But if you have deeply involved emotional chatter, you give it special prestige. You think those thoughts deserve the special privilege of being called emotion. Somehow, in the realm of actual mind, things don't work that way. Whatever arises is just thinking: thinking you're horny, thinking you're angry. As far as meditation practice is concerned, your thoughts are no longer regarded as VIPs, while you meditate. You think, you sit; you think, you sit; you think, you sit. You have thoughts, you have thoughts about thoughts. Let it happen that way. Call them thoughts.

    --Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

    Palzang
  • edited September 2009
    okay:confused::)
  • BrigidBrigid Veteran
    edited September 2009
    Ahhh, Chogyam Trungpa gets right to the root of the problem once again. I can't help but love him.
  • FoibleFullFoibleFull Canada Veteran
    edited September 2009
    Dear Found,
    Samadhi is apparently not all it's cracked up to be.
    My teacher (A Tibetan, a monk since age 13 in the Dalai Lama's monastery) says that your experiences during meditation are not important because they do not last long after you get up from your cushion. They are pleasant experiences, but they are not what takes you into enlightement.
    I keep a quote from a book about the Buddha:"The elevated state of consciousness he achieved (in meditation) could not be Nibbana, because when he came out of his trance, he was still subject to desire, passion, and craving. Nibbana could not be temporary!"
    After years of practice, I am beginning to think that the core of the Buddhistg path is training our mind and changing the imprints we set. So very different from the yoga as my mother learned it from her guru, where progress was measured by sensational meditations, but not by behaviors (inward/outer) off the meditation cushion.
    Comments?.....
  • DhammaDhatuDhammaDhatu Veteran
    edited September 2009
    TheFound wrote: »
    my problem i think is, I cant meditate right when i have unresolved matters in my mind (like i need a job, my father is about to die, and i haven't talked to him in years, my mom is getting old I have huge debt to her, I have old friends I owe money to, I have the bank i owe money too secretly...) etc etc, thats fkin BS !!!!, I want to meditate,
    but with all these things i feel like just freaking out..
    help me out here
    Hello TheFound

    My opinion is what you are going through is normal and to be expected.

    The Buddha included Right Livelihood as part of his path. The Buddha advised against accruing debt.

    In other words, it is difficult to feel settled and meditate if we have not sorted out the economic and financial matters you have mentioned.

    My opinion is for you to focus on sorting out these matters.

    So contact your father, tell him honestly what is on your mind, determine whether you mom has the capacity to forgive you of your debt, try to find a suitable job and focusing on starting your handling of your financial affairs afresh, so you avoid problems.

    In brief, think about the ways in which you can make a fresh start.

    Best wishes

    DDhatu

    :)
  • DhammaDhatuDhammaDhatu Veteran
    edited September 2009
    FoibleFull wrote: »
    Comments?.....
    Enlightenment is the whole package. The wisdom we require is not only transcendant but also temporal.

    :)
  • edited October 2009
    How are things going for you now? I see this thread is fairly old by internet standards. Anyway, i'll throw in my spiel.<O:p</O:p
    <O:p</O:p

    You sound like a pretty intellectually lively person, with a flexible mind that likes to think a lot about a lot of different things. Which is fantastic, but I know it can be frustrating when your trying to meditate. Despite this, I would suggest working with it rather than against it. <O:p></O:p>
    <O:p</O:p

    First, examine your expecations. Maybe you believe that you should be able to shut off all your thoughts, and your ego stories etc, and attain some sort of bliss. I reckon this espectation would make things much harder than they are. It's actually setting up an ideal, and the thing about ideals is that they always force you to sacifice the present for the future. And if you ever attain them, you feel happy for a bit, then you're hungry for something better. Your mind is slyly whispering "This is it... this is the one that will mean lasting contentment... foreverr!!!!!" And actually nothing has been resolved. It's a no win. <O:p</O:p
    <O:p</O:p

    And then you could look at your attitude toward your thoughts. Its ok to be upset by things in your life, sounds like things are pretty heavy going atm. I think i remember the Buddha saying that the world shoots the first arrow at you, but you shoot the second one. So maybe the first arrow in the case of your meditation is worried thoughts or ego centered thoughts, and the second arrow is your judgement about them. Sometimes there is even a third arrow that comes with the message "Boo! You're such a failure of a Buddhist for judging your thoughts so harshly!!". At some point you just have to say "OK, there it is." Then you can return to the breath or whatever. <O:p</O:p
    <O:p</O:p

    Perhaps just try to observe them and accept them, maybe even label them. Don't feel like a victim, or like you have to dominate and control them. Actually you may find it’s quite satisfying to recognise your worrying thoughts when you take a more relaxed appraoch. Everytime you call your own bullshit, it’s kind of an achievement. It’s pulling weeds. They may grow back or new ones pop up, but that’s just the way it goes.

    Attempts to manipulate your mind and protect yourself from suffering ironically make you more crazy. <O:p</O:p
    <O:p</O:p

    Also, maybe try some physical exercise before meditating… even walking meditation. I’ve found it helps me unwind the old thinking brain before sitting. <O:p</O:p
    <O:p</O:p
  • AllbuddhaBoundAllbuddhaBound Veteran
    edited October 2009
    Hello once again TheFound.

    I have experienced problems with the voices that drown out my intentions as well. I found an approach that was very helpful from a Thonlin Priest. He talked about frustration as being part of ourselves.

    He asked everyone to picture themselves sitting in a cave. When the frustration comes, invite it into your cave. Greet it and communicate that you are not afraid or avoiding it, and be a good host (asking it for tea) but insisting that the frustration or thoughts also honor you by being a good guest. By being a good guest, the priest says you insist the guest be quiet. It is the rule the guest must abide by.

    The problems I have experienced is to find the balance between acceptance and controlling frustration. This approach has been useful to me and I hope it helps you as well.

    I will add a link that may help you with your frustration.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d90K7YTk2V4&feature=fvw
  • edited October 2009
    I'm with Jhana and Dhamma Dhatu... Even though you just mentioned it in passing, the fact that you're unemployed might just be the core issue. If you're trying to avoid worrying about getting a job and paying your bills by watching TV all day, you're just compounding your problems. And naturally while you're not distracting yourself by mindlessly vegging out on the couch, those feelings of guilt are just going to hit you in the face. Why did I waste all day watching TV when I could have been filling out job applications, working on a resume, attending a job fair, visiting the unemployment office, etc?
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