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Loving yourself?

Discussion in 'Meditation Chatter Box' started by enlighteneduk, Aug 22, 2009.

  1. enlighteneduk

    enlighteneduk Member

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    Just as I have always thought then- I havent really accomplished anything in my life- it just happened!!:D So there can be no failure and no success in anything in life?!!

    Heather
     
  2. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    Damn ! You figured it out ! :p

    Svært så bra min venn ;)

    Does that thought scare you, or do you find it liberating ?
     
  3. enlighteneduk

    enlighteneduk Member

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    Dunno Edwin,

    I have never sought praise for anything I have done in my life, and I guess this is why I have never been proud of my 'so called' achievements. So it is not really any different to how I have always been!!

    Heather
     
  4. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    Fair enough.

    As long as it isn't indifference, this is a very healthy way to look at it. It's not so much a matter of not caring, but more of acceptance. The fact that this comes natural for you makes this easyer to understand for you !
     
  5. scotland01

    scotland01 Member

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    Sorry Edwin can you?

    So Edwin,

    I'm going to try and ask this the best way....I think.
    So we are just watching a movie as you put it.
    There is no destination to speak of..
    So the material goals we aim for are just things to do, right.
    Then what is it?

    To simply be or being in the now. Can you expalin more?
    I guess this is the thing I am currently having problems getting my head over.
    I'm between jobs and honesty don't know what direction to take?
    The not knowing what to do or not being able to decide what direction in life to take just grounds the ship to holt. I know I over think this but?
     
  6. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    Believe me, I know what you are going through.
    For years on end I have been struggling to keep my business alive, with bankruptcy hanging over my head.

    How could I not care ? And if I were to achieve enlightenment, would I simply not care anymore and just let the business go ? Being enlightened would mean that I would be indifferent to worldly goods right ?

    thankfully, it is not like this.

    Enlightenment is more like accepting the situation you are in, completely.
    Acceptance means that you understand your position, and don't feel resistance to it. That doesn't mean that it shouldn't be changed !

    Let's take your situation.
    You are between jobs. And you have no clue what to do. You might be sending letters to companies everywhere. And it might very well be that none of them will even respond.
    You told me that you don't know what direction to take.

    This is where acceptance will help. When looking at your reaction to being jobless, what feelings arise in your body ?
    Fear ? ( what if I will be jobless for a year or more )
    Anger ? ( This shouldn't happen to me, I deserve better than this )
    Dispair ? ( How am I going to pay my bills in time )

    Observe the feelings, and the thoughts and/or memories that arise from them.
    Just observe them. There is nothing you have to do. Just look.
    In your attention, the pain will go away.

    Are you able to accept the fact that you are jobless now ?
    If so, try to be aware of your thoughts and feelings again, observing them like a movie. The thoughts and feelings will urge you to do certain things, and you can just watch your thoughts and feelings doing that. Maybe you will make an appointment for a job interview, or want to write another letter, that is all fine, but keep awareness on your body/mind.

    Keep your eye's open and try to look for small signs that seem to resonate with you.

    The situation will solve itself, wether you are aware of it or not.

    It always has, and always will. So, in that sense, there is nothing You have to "do", your body-mind will do whatever it needs to do, and you can be the whitness of it.
    However, in this state, you will start to see that things will start to fall into place all by themselves. You might for instance be contacted by someone who wants to collect a debt, and staying in your awareness, there is no fear, and you might just very calmly ask them to do a suggestion, and it turns out to be better than you expected. I had the same experience a few months ago. There are a lot of examples like this. It will take practice to accept whatever life throws at you. The situation you are in is what is happening to you. The stories that your mind feeds seem related to those events, but are in fact just stories. Or part of the story that your body/mind seems to be the lead actor in. But your Being can't be hurt or damaged by all this. When looking at the world from within Being, all pains and joys in life seem trivial.

    It's hard to make this clear, I hope you understand what I am pointing at.
     
  7. pollyanna

    pollyanna Moderator

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    Here are some different thoughts and questions I had while reading this thread:-

    I think the ego as in belief systems or map of reality is often confused with the saying we may have grown up with that "he or she has a big ego"

    Here are some examples where I think of the ego as a problem - I hope they make sense:-

    Someone makes a joke at the expense of another and it makes them feel good when others laugh at "their" joke. In other words, they need to put someone else down to raise themself up and they rationalise to themselves and others that it is only a harmless bit of fun.

    Many family members do this and they don't realise how harmful or negative it is to the person the "harmless joke" is directed towards.

    Some people need to be seen to have a better house, job, car, clothes and/or even cleverer children to feel good about themselves. Too much importance is placed on material things. And the list could go on and on.

    On the other hand, I believe the ego, as in belief system or map of reality is something we will have as long as we physically live. It is necessary through meditation to allow the negative parts of the belief system to dissolve and make way for new creative thoughts to serve ourselves and others better.

    I believe we are born to achieve and when we do achieve, we release endorphins and feel good. If you work at relationships, achieve goals or create something worthwhile, it's healthy to feel good about it - as long as you don't have to boast about it or shout it from the roof tops.

    As the saying goes "The truth will set you free" or "To thine own self be true."

    Life is no dress rehearsal and we have the power and responsibility to choose.

    I truly believe that the mind is like a garden. Just as a garden can be filled with weeds and/or flowers, the mind can be filled with negative and/or positive thoughts.

    Just as weeds grow all on their own, we have a tendancy to lean to the negative. Flowers have to be planted and nurtured, as do relationships and dreams.

    As a garden needs weeding and re planting, so does the mind. As you sow, so shall you reap.

    Maybe I have a long way to go to enlightenment :eek:

    Even though I love the inner peace, bliss and many benefits often experienced through meditation, I love life and will enjoy every moment of it because after all it is so short.

    I think we choose to come here for a reason and get lost along the way. If we were meant to constantly rest in our true being, we wouldn't have created the life we chose to live - would we?

    Meditation allows us to become more aware of our true being and constantly change our map of reality to serve us better to fulfil our purpose.

    I think the hardest part is knowing our purpose, knowing what we truly want and remembering what we came here to achieve.

    Well, these are some of my thoughts - I hope they are of help to someone.

    I wish you all peace, joy and a truly fulfilled life :) :) :)
     
  8. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    When reading closely, it would seem that Polly and me would be saying something entirely different, disagreeing even.

    Yet, this is not the case.

    I can fully agree with what Polly said.
    With the analogy that Polly used of a garden being like the mind, the only difference between enlightenment and not-enlightenment would be that enlightenment would be to first accept that the garden isn't perfect. That feeling bad about the weeds is pointless, and counterproductive. Good plants and bad weeds are just judgements made by your mind.
    Once you see that, you feel peace with your garden.
    And then you start weeding it, nurturing it, without one single judgement. And that's when weeding and growing plants becomes a fun game to do, not a job or a task. And you can watch your garden grow and decay without becoming annoyed with certain things. You can sit in your ( basically never perfect ) garden, and enjoy it 100 %.

    "Enlightenment is basically lightening up"
    - Mike Myers.

    And it is the same with thoughts. You can't stop thoughts, as you probably have found out in meditation allready. But, as in meditation, when you leave them alone, and allow them to pass, they can't hurt you. Accepting the thoughts as something that just happens. And after that acceptance, the thoughts quiet down.

    Still, like in Polly's analogy, enlightenment doesn't mean that you can just sit back and leave the garden, because by some magic no weeds come up anymore, and the hedge trims itself. Like Polly said, life is too beautifull for that.
    There is just no attachment to feelings regarding the work that needs to be done. You just do it and you can enjoy the game.

    Thinking that you can sit back when you are enlightened is just as much a misunderstanding than the one that, because enlightened beings aren't afraid of death, they aren't careful when crossing the street anymore.
    Just because enlightenment takes fear of death away, doesn't mean that suddenly you won't love life anymore ! In a strange way, you will love it more even, because fear doesn't dominate your mind anymore.

    I am positively sure that, even tho Polly took a different route than mine, Polly is basically at the same point. It is impossible to implement the Law of Attraction successfully without some level of enlightenment. I thought it was better to break down the ego, and replace it with a positive mindset.
    Instead, Polly has for years worked on her ego, until it became the same positive mindset. I can only salute Polly for her determination and persiverance in not quitting. Her road must have been bumpier than mine.

    But she has been reaping what she has sown for years ;) and it's not weeds.
    So her reward is here allready :)
     
  9. Ta-tsu-wa

    Ta-tsu-wa Member

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    Polly

    Can I add my thoughts to yours?

    To be rooted in the present moment, or perhaps better stated, to be fully aware of our eternal roots in the present moment, we have to differentiate between the "moment", and all those things which fill up the moment. Sort of like a fish tank filled with exotic fish at the aquarium, the tank is a permanent fixture but the fish swimming around inside that tank are always moving; always changing, never static or fixed. The contents are always in motion, and yet the tank remains.

    For example, I'm here right this moment typing. The room is only dimly lit by the ambient light coming in from the window. There is silence all around me, and from my current point of perspective I might very well be the only living person in existence.

    Through the window, which is open, I see fir, pine, a few maple, and the odd alder tree outside, extending in all directions. The maples and alders have leaves which have begun turning shades of gold with a little red mixed in for accent. The air filtering in through my window carries a fragrance that cannot really be described in so many words, but it carries the distinct feel of Autumn.

    There are still a few light wisps of mist hanging above the ground here and there, some filtering through the trees. If imagination were to be given free rein they might almost be mistaken for spectral figures moving about slowly, observing and wondering about me as I observe and wonder about them.

    Everything I just described are just the contents that fill up this moment. Like the aquarium fish, they will come and go, even if I remain right where I am. That haunting feel of Autumn (my favorite time of year) was not here a few days ago, but this morning I can feel it in my bones. In fact there are already subtle differences between the contents as they are, and as they were when I began describing them just a few minutes ago. Only the moment itself remains with me.

    Contents are forever changing. That's their nature. In that sense, we might look at the Ego as another of those bits of content. Certainly my Ego today is very different from what it was when I was a child. In very subtle ways it will be different when I lay down to sleep tonight from the way it was when I awoke this morning. Ego is content, but it is content that changes so gradually the change is normally imperceptible.

    Scotland wrote:

    The secret to "getting one's head over" being in the present moment, as Scotland beautifullly phrased it, has three important points.

    First, we're always in the present moment, whether we want to be or not. You cannot be in any other moment. No one can. It isn't a matter of "getting there". It's a matter of recognizing what already is.

    Second, there is a world of difference between "intellectually understanding" that we're always here in the present moment, and "feeling the truth" of this fact down to the deepest essence of our Being. An intellectual understanding might be a place to begin, but it is only a beginning and not an end, no matter how astute that intellectual grasp might be. Before it will produce anything of practical value this understanding has to give way to an inner experience.

    Third, mistaking the content of the moment for the moment itself is the single greatest reason we fail to achieve this inner experience. Meditation is perhaps the greatest single vehicle for attaining an experience of the present moment because for the brief time we practice each day we place ourselves in a position to get a taste of experiencing the moment for what it is, independent of all the content that normally comes along with it. As we become more and more familiar with the feel of the experience, the experience becomes more readily available to us, even during times outside of meditation practice.

    Scotland's situation with employment, and choosing a path forward and so forth, are bits and pieces of the content of the moment, but they are not the moment itself. If, however, they are confused with the moment, they will appear to place substantial obstacles in the way. But if they are seen for what they are; simply the contents of the present moment, they can be approached in an entirely different manner. They will be experienced as the transitory set of facts they are, rather than as the framework for much of Scotland's current life.

    Just this subtle shift in perception, all by itself, is enough to open up new, and hitherto unsuspected ways of interacting with the contents of the moment. It isn't that the contents all vanish away. They won't. But they will become transfigured in a way that changes them from seeming obstacles into pathways towards ultimate fulfillment.

    That's what contents are useful for. They're not negative things, they're tools, just as the Ego is not a demon to be exorcized. It is another, very important tool that serves us well in working with the practical aspects of day to day living. The key to all of it is using meditation and similar practices in order to gain that first experiential taste of present moment existence.
     
  10. pollyanna

    pollyanna Moderator

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    Hi Edwin, you're quite right - I'm certainly not disagreeing with you or anyone else - just probably confusing everyone from a different perspective :eek: When Heather stated:-

    "I suppose I was brought up to believe that to love oneself was narcissistic, and of the ego, and maybe this is what has coloured my idea of this throughout my life. Now in all the self development work I have undertaken, I am told I must first love myself before I can love another, and this is the concept that I struggle with, constantly!!"

    I could totally relate with her and it made me think of how we can become confused over the type of ego we are discussing. Maybe the ego Heather and I relate to is a U.K. thing?

    Ta-tsu-wa, I also agree with you about the ego as in map of reality. It absolutely is an amazing tool that serves us well in working with the practical aspects of day to day living. We just need to be aware and mindful of what we allow to add to it, while observing and letting go through meditation the things that do not serve us well.

    I think you're right Edwin about the different approach - my road years ago through personal growth was built on the power of my dream, positive thinking, belief and sheer determination. I always knew that meditation was the missing key :)

    Thank goodness for LifeFlow - peace and joy to everyone :) :) :)
     
  11. GilesC

    GilesC Member

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    Nah, I think we're all talking about the same ego. It simply manifests in many ways.
    If you've read the Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield, you'll be aware of the "control dramas" he talks of. These are also a manifestation of the ego and relate to ego you were describing in your post, yet still the same ego as we've talked about throughout this thread.

    ;)

    Hugs

    Giles
     
  12. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    It never felt like disagreeing Pollyanna ;) You offered your point of view. And I have certainly noticed that there are people with whom your point of view resonates better than mine. I would have serious trouble reaching these people, and I am grateful that we have you in the forums, since you are able to reach out to them. You have been a teacher in the process for me as well. You were the only one who was able to make the LoA understandable for me.
     
  13. pollyanna

    pollyanna Moderator

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    Thanks Edwin, you're a star ;) You also reach and help many people here who would not relate to me and I have learned much from you also.

    An american guy I worked with many years ago said I was successful because I was "Dumb and excited" :eek: I actually took it as the compliment it was intended to be :) it's really quite a good description though.

    It's great that there is such a variety of people here. As they say, variety is the spice of life.

    I read this quote by Ghandi last night which reminds me of you.

    “Man becomes great exactly in the degree in which he works for the welfare of his fellow-men.”

    Yes Giles, you're right. There is only one ego - I won't try and explain anymore what I was trying to say in case I confuse people on this issue :)

    I wish you both an abundance of peace and joy :) :) :)
     
  14. scotland01

    scotland01 Member

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    Direction and the now

    Hello,

    Thanks you for your replies to my questions, I haven’t shot a post back straight away as I wanted to read the information a few times and think over it.

    So this issue of lack of direction etc...
    Edwin asked how does it feel, well it’s kind of like the unrest ness described in the book The Celestine Prophecy. Or in words, frustrated, bored inpatient wasting, small. A need to do something of worth not just a means.

    The advice asked if I could let it go..... can I, well yes and no, some days yes I don't worry as much and read a good book for example that might help or going on here. Other days it’s very unproductive.

    I feel I need to make a decision and just move in some direction but I always am tired down with the need of meaning.
    I need to detach from the facts and simply look at them for what they are rather than be the facts.....easier said than done.

    Is this something I need to get over and just pick the best direction and just go do it and review at a later stage or maybe something more eg past rules that are holding me back?
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2009

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