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A fear of cruelty

KeromeKerome Love, love is mysteryThe Continent Veteran

After a pleasant afternoon visit with a friend drinking coffee I was on my way home. I was surrounded by concrete and people speaking unfamiliar Eastern European languages on the train platform, and I was gripped by a dark mood. I was thinking about crimes and unhappy families, and it made me quite unhappy.

So I turned to mindfulness to try and find out what was going on inside, and what I got back was that I was carrying too much of the fear of cruelty, and that my imagination was being gripped by this, and I was projecting a perceived darkness on the dreary surroundings. So I spent the train journey in introspection, attempting to mindfully examine the fear of cruelty. The projecting vanished after a short time.

The thing is, I have a fairly sunny personality, but I’m occasionally prone to seeing the world as quite a dark place. I think it is an illusion perhaps brought on by reading a few too many of the wrong kind of books when I was younger. My introspection did carry some hints of this. These days I notice my personal sensitivity a lot more, I’m much more aware of my inside.

Before I started looking seriously into Buddhism I would never have been aware of these things, but I find I’m quite a sensitive person after all, and I carry impressions from my past which come out in dreams and these kind of moods. Perhaps practicing mindfulness increases one’s inner sensitivity.

Have you found that mindfulness has made you more sensitive?

lobsterpersonFosdickShoshinDavidadamcrossley

Comments

  • Yes meditation usually makes one more/aware/sensitive. That is why it is important to also develop non-attachment. We become aware of our reactions ... I like nice thoughts, I don't like unpleasant thoughts, that sort of thing.

    Through discipline we can steer our mind into skilful/helpful directions. What does fear feel like in the body? Relax the clenched fists, knots in the stomach, desire to piss yourself and run for a hole etc. It really is easier to calm the body, which effects the mind.

    Be interested in others experience. ?

    personFosdickShoshin
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    The projecting vanished after a short time.

    There I was teaching grannies how to suck eggs, when I realised they already knew. Who guessed?

    Projection is part of the dharma toolkit. In an ideal Taoist-Zenith world our transparency leaves us increasingly empty of reflections. However initially being aware or contemplating our inside whirled, unkinks our knots, nots and why nots.

    For example not thinking of Almighty Cod is one of the Peace dividends of dharma - we can increase our unravelling.

    As well as working on the physical manifestions of unhelpful states of mind and emotion, we can with sufficient space in our being, explore emotive states.

    Here is a dreamy image ...

    ... which I found in Grannys kitchen whilst talking to the sardine sales team ...
    http://thorntonsguerillablog.blogspot.com/2011/10/enlightenment-delusion.html

  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    We are all sensitive.

    We need to be grounded. So important. Positive psychology.
    http://buddhanet.net/compassion.htm

  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    I'm finding that in the fallout from the New Zealand massacre, I'm definitely more sensitive to the horrors of the world. I'm even avoiding reading the news because acts of cruelty are reducing me to tears.

    Perhaps it's because NZ is so close and I have family on both islands that it makes it that much more intense, I don't know. But I'm fearful of the seemingly cruel society we live in :(

  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited March 25

    How strange @Kundo

    I see the New Zealand Prime Minister, bravely embracing kindness. Fearlessly.

    Useless trumps, terrorist lumps, ignorant haters are always in the nothing-new, News.

    Find the good. Kick fear into samsara nut land ...

    Bunks
  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    @Kundo said:
    I'm finding that in the fallout from the New Zealand massacre, I'm definitely more sensitive to the horrors of the world. I'm even avoiding reading the news because acts of cruelty are reducing me to tears.

    Perhaps it's because NZ is so close and I have family on both islands that it makes it that much more intense, I don't know. But I'm fearful of the seemingly cruel society we live in :(

    Don't let them win @Kundo - put a smile on that dial, get out and share your love and generosity with the world!

    =) :)

    lobsterpersonKundo
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    @lobster said:

    Find the good. Kick fear into samsara nut land ...

    The guy's either nuts or has no nuts ........ that's Zen for ya ;)

    Kundo
  • FoibleFullFoibleFull Canada Veteran

    Yes, Buddhism has gradually made me more sensitive. The practices make you more aware, so it increases all awareness and sensitivity is one of the things you will become more aware of.

    But you don't reason with your emotions. They are not logical so you cannot apply logic or control them with intellectual tactics.
    You don't try to change them. Buddhism is about first becoming aware/mindful .. and THEN about relaxing into whatever comes up and accepting it.

    It is our desire to never have unpleasantness that is the cause of our unhappiness. And the expectation that we can reach a state where there is never any physical or emotional pain is unrealistic (re-read the First Noble Truth).

    So, rather than trying to resist (which only increases pain) and make discomfort stop, we work on trying to open to it and relax into it.
    Oh, I still sometimes sit there and wish a feeling would go away. It can be a real struggle to learn to accept and relax with it. Bit by bit, year by year, decade by decade, we improve this skill. It gets easier. Perhaps some day it will BE easy.

    lobster
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Exactly so @FoibleFull

    Part of our toolkit is as @Bunks almost said:

    Don't let the bastards win @Kundo - put a smile on that dial, get out and share your love and generosity with the world!

    =) :)

    Practice wrathful metta. >:) Hug an uptighter. Bless a Christian with A Harry Krishna mantra. Spell everything wrong so @federica can learn to let go ... ;)
    Give your fear to a demon (that is all some of them eat)

    More chod/choice tips on request ... o:)
    https://www.elephantjournal.com/2014/06/why-feeding-our-demons-means-loving-ourselves/

    FoibleFull
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