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This jarring resistance

Discussion in 'Meditation Chatter Box' started by Ihavecoffee, Aug 9, 2010.

  1. Ihavecoffee

    Ihavecoffee Member

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    During meditation and while playing my instruments I've come across this jarring resistance at the back of my head and this resistance seems to be the root cause of my anxiety and other problems. It is what's keeping me stuck in this observer role always monitoring my life but never living it.

    I have on a few occasions been able to go beyond this resistance which has both resulted in panic-attacks and at other times euphoria. I am not able to do this on a regular basis however, I total I might have done it like 3 times.

    I'm not sure what I'm asking really or if there is anyway you can help me with this but I find it interesting to talk about non the less. So if you have any tips or recommendations feel free to post, cheers!
     
  2. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    The thing that has helped me in the past has always been to invite a negative feeling in, instead of resisting it.

    Negative feelings are associated with pain and discomfort, and we don't want those do we ?
    Well there is the problem right there !

    Think of yourself as "the room in the middle"

    On your right is the "Current upcoming emotion room", and to your left is the "processed emotions room".
    In order for your emotions to be processed, they have to pass through your room. Of course we welcome the positive feelings in, they feel good !
    But as much as we try to hold on to it, as soon as they are in our room, they pass through to the next room. It's impossible to hold on to a positive feeling, it's like trying to grab a stream of water with your hands.

    But as soon as a negative emotion comes knocking on your door, you try to push back on the door, but the negative emotion puts his foot in, and as much as you push, you can't close it.

    And here comes the real problem: As long as you are blocking the door for the negative emotion, you are blocking all other emotions as well, both negative and positive.

    So, instead, allow the negative emotion in. Yes, it will hurt like [email protected]#$ as long as it is in your room, but just like the positive emotion, it will go on to the next room. And then the next emotion is ready to enter !

    If the emotion that is being blocked is quite strong, don't be surprised if your body reacts as soon as you have allowed it to enter.
    I once experienced a twitching leg for 10 minutes after having let go of one of my biggest fears.
    There is no need to feel scared about that, but if you do feel scared, allow that emotion in as well ;)

    So, as soon as you bump into the blocked emotion, start talking to it, tell it to come in, thank him for his effort to warn you or to remind you of that old pain you never before allowed.
    Allow yourself to become engulfed with the pain and anxiety, and be prepared to experience it for as long as is needed.
    It will pass !

    Good luck ! :)
     
  3. Midnight

    Midnight Member

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    That was an awesome post, Edwin. It personally helped me a ton a few days ago, and I realize that what i've been doing to "release" emotions since i've learned meditation was less than helpful. In fact, I didn't really even release them. I would know that they have come up, but I wouldn't really feel them. I would just think that it will pass and I distract myself with something else. Not necessarily to mask the pain, I just thought it would go away in time.

    Now I realize that the emotion just wants to be felt fully! It's really easy. Then it is released forever.

    I allow the emotion to hurt my body. That's all it is doing, it feels uncomfortable, but only to the body. Underneath the emotion I can feel the peace too. It's an odd sensation to describe, but that's the best way to say it.

    It's going to feel very uncomfortable and painful even, but it has to in order for you to feel the peace within your body. And at worst, the pain will last in your body for only a few minutes before it disappears. And that's like the absolute worst case scenario. It eases your thoughts too once it is released. Challenge your pain to do it's worse. That helps you stop fearing pain too, and it will allow you to feel everything more fully.

    Sometimes, the same thoughts will trigger an emotion again. I've gone through this multiple times. Some experiences take several times to feel your emotions fully before it stops bothering you altogether.

    Whatever you feel right now, you are supposed to feel. So feel it fully! :)
     
  4. oneflewover

    oneflewover Member

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  5. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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  6. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    The beauty of it is that you now see how fast emotions disappear into the next room.
    And after it has passed, it doesn't linger around anymore as well ! A new emotion can come up, like you said, after the previous one, and they might be related to each other due to the topic that they are coming up for, but it is a new emotion and the previous one is allready passed.

    And this doesn't just work for unprocessed old pain, but for every single emotion that you are experiencing right now. That is what living in the Now means. Any emotion that you experience right now doesn't have to come back if you live through it instead of around it.

    And then you start to notice that you can experience an unpleasant emotion and then 2 seconds later it is completely gone ! Every moment has it's own emotion, and you live in the Now and watch them enter, and watch them leave.

    Do you have any idea how important this discovery is for you ?
     
  7. Midnight

    Midnight Member

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    It sounds like it is...:p

    I've felt completely relaxed and at peace the past few days after realizing that I never really felt my emotions fully. I managed to get over what would have once been a particularly traumatizing event after a few instances of feeling my emotions completely. It was like a phase of clearness, no emotional blocks made themselves apparent in me, but I did feel a few emotions during that period.

    Have you ever experienced a general "blaaah" after a period like that? It's happened to me, but this time around, I'm fully experiencing this blaah. I'm embracing the general feeling of "eh". Not necessarily to get rid of it (though sometimes my mind seems to make that into a goal) but because I know the emotion just needs to be felt fully.

    When I started doing this, it took a bit longer than two seconds to feel an emotion. Looking back, it would take a minute or two (sometimes pressures in my chest would come up rather than what usually feels like an emotion. Are these to be felt fully as well?) instead of seconds.
     
  8. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    funny thing is that you explain here that your mind seems to want to make "getting rid of emotions" you goal, and your next text unwantedly seems to illustrate just that:
    It took a bit longer to feel an emotion ?
    You mean that with you ( probably the only person on earth ) the emotion sends you an email with an appointment ? " Unwanted emotion scheduled for thursday 2.15 AM " ????
    ;)

    Now your mind is telling you that you need to process emotions, and is making it into a task.
    The fact of the matter is that there is nothing you have to, or can do to feel an emotion. Once it comes up you have no choice but to experience it.
    But the resistance we have been talking about ( remember the "room in the middle" analogy ) is this:
    An emotion comes up. It is unpleasant. Mind starts to think about it after it came up ! meaning it is allready there.
    Now mind tries to do a time machine trick: Bending space and time it goes back to the moment before the emotion came up, and says: "This emotion is unwanted and should not be felt". Sound rediculous to you ?
    It should ! It's impossible !

    This is why resisting an emotion actually causes more harm than just living through them. It's more work !

    Don't go searching for emotions, expect them to come when they do, and stop thinking about it ;)

    Now the feelings of pressure on the chest can be examined by the way.
    Try to find the location(s) in your body where they can be felt. Accept that the feeling is there, and invite the manifestation of stress in your body to tell you what is wrong. Within seconds you will know what it is. Weird huh ?
    But it really works like that.
    Once you know what it is, just go back to experiencing the emotion fully.

    Easy as that !
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2010
  9. Midnight

    Midnight Member

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    That's the thing, my mind sometimes turns it into a technique to use, rather than a natural way of living. A while ago, it did this, so i kind of discarded the idea of feeling my emotions fully. It kind of turned into a tiring game of trying to feel what was happening in my body.

    Now when I recently went back to feeling my emotions fully (about a week ago), I would stop, take a breath, and sort of "go into" the sensation in my body. It was really working, so then my mind tried to manipulate it, I suppose.

    I'm back at one of those "lows" I keep describing, but I have a whole new perspective of it. First off, I don't call it a "low" period anymore, more like a "recovery" and learning sort of period. I realize that I am the "room in the middle". These emotions are all having a party inside me. Actually experiencing the hurt and pain that results in these feels a lot better than resisting it and longing for a time when I didn't feel that way.

    These cycles of recovery lasted so long in the past in comparison to the highs that it felt as if I had spent more time feeling like crap than gaining anything from meditation.

    I used to think that realizing that I am not the emotion would mean that the emotions and feelings would go away, and I'd be okay again. But it's actually just realizing that this will pass, and that the emotions inside me aren't me! The thoughts associated with them aren't either. So i let them have their fun.

    It's funny how whenever I post about some trouble i'm having, I seem to solve the problem later. But the posts I come back to read are usually confirmation of my own insights :)

    "Now your mind is telling you that you need to process emotions, and is making it into a task.
    The fact of the matter is that there is nothing you have to, or can do to feel an emotion. Once it comes up you have no choice but to experience it."

    Such a powerful statement.

    It is more work to resist bad emotions. Bad emotions aren't even really bad, sure their painful to the body, but the simple realization that it is impermanent makes me not worry about it.
     
  10. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    This is true for a lot of people. Writing down your issues can help you with disassociating with the problem. The problem is still there, but it isn't "Your problem" anymore. It's not personal anymore, and then mind can work on finding a solution instead of producing thoughts like " Why is this happening to me ".
    The emotions that make us feel bad are meant that way as a warning system.
    Feeling scared for instance would not be useful if it was a pleasant feeling.
    If your typical caveman would have encountered a sabretooth tiger and feel good about it, mankind would not have come this far ;)

    It has to feel hugely unpleasant, to spur you into action.
    No energy is wasted in nature, every emotion is there with a reason. Meaningless emotions do not exist ! That is why it is so important to listen to it.
    That doesn't mean that you have to take action to every emotion by the way. The fact that the emotion is there doesn't have to mean that it is there to help you. It is more like a suggestion than anything else.
    Like a person who is overly jealous, if he acts upon his feelings all the time, chances are only bigger that he will spur his partner into the arms of another.
    Or cause the relationship to end.

    Or someone with arachnaphobia.
    Suppose you are driving topspeed on a highway, and have an arachnaphobic person sitting next to you. If you would say that you saw a spider in the car earlyer that day, the arachnaphobic person would be very tempted to jump out of the car, no matter how fast it is driving.

    So you see, even tho you have to experience the emotion fully, taking action upon it is not essential. Observation is.
     
  11. Midnight

    Midnight Member

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    Yes, just warning systems. In this context we are not the warnings, we are the ones receiving them. No energy is wasted in nature...how profound.

    That brings me to another thought I had earlier. Nature is balanced, and if something were to keep growing and growing, it would go out of balance, and you would have a disease. While growth is a good thing, too much of it can be overwhelming. These recovery cycles are they body's way of telling you to slow down and learn for a little bit (according to my intuition).

    After learning about feeling my emotions fully, and just letting myself feel terrible, i came out of the "worst" of the cycle in about 2 days, rather than a week or so. And even then, i didn't feel the need to think about things or try and figure things out. I just let myself feel bad. And there's always a bit of underlying peace to it. Another note is that I don't feel as if it's the end of the world when I feel a flurry of negative emotions. I am not sad, there is only sadness within me.

    Even when I fear that my insights or peace will leave me, that's another emotion to feel.

    Thank you for your wisdom Edwin :)
     
  12. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    That is the discovery I was talking about, the important one :cool:

    Understanding that you are not your mind, not your emotions, but that the real you is the one observing it all.

    Just to humor me, try to figure out if the you that is watching the emotions is bound within the borders and boundries of your skin.
    I mean, that you that is watching, where is it located in your body ?
     
  13. Midnight

    Midnight Member

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    Yeah, i thought I understood this, but it's different when you actually feel whatever is going on in your body isn't YOU. So it's like there's no reason to fear any of it, because it's all temporary.

    Uhhhh, ummmm *head explodes*

    :p

    I wouldn't think it has a specific location...I inhabit my entire body? I think I know what you're getting at though...
     
  14. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    Generally speaking, this realisation,which like you said goes beyond mind and can be felt, is referred to as "enlightenment". You are there my friend :)
    Your body can be felt, as it houses the senses that people normally attribute to their ego ( is it really "I broke my leg" or is it "I am observing the sensation of a broken leg ).

    But most people think their consiousness is settled in the brain.
    You allready know that this isn't the case. Now you need to find out if the location of your consiousness is purely subderminal.
    And yes, it is a trick question ;)
     
  15. Midnight

    Midnight Member

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    Really now... Enlightened? Me? Lol

    I don't feel particularly enlightened. I imagined it to be a sort of momentous event.

    I don't think consciousness has a specific location. You can't find you, because you are you. Is that the answer? :D
     
  16. GilesC

    GilesC Member

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    Yes, we're all enlightened, we just tend to cover it up... some more than others.

    And that is the expectation that can stop you from recognising it. ;)

    Yes. If you are referring to conciousness being the true Self, you can't observe the true Self, as if you are able to observe it, you can't be it, but the one thing you can't observe... is the observer... and that observer is truly You.

    Hugs

    Giles
     
  17. Midnight

    Midnight Member

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    Hmm good point. I just figured i'd feel a really deep peace at all times or something...

    I guess I got that notion from The Power of Now, the way Eckhart Tolle described what happened to him.
     
  18. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    Don't worry, that will come.

    The deep peace and feeling of bliss is kind of like the carrot in front of the donkey, making him try to walk towards the carrot while it is attached to him.
    [​IMG]
    It is what drives the seekers to start moving.
    Most teachers promise it, but refuse to say when it will come after your moment of insight.

    And most people, like you expect total bliss and peace the instant it hits.

    But even tho understanding the true nature of the Self is the first real step, your mind has been conditioned to act in a certain way, react to events in a "safe" way, that is to say, for instance if you have had a bad experience in the past, you will probably try to avoid that event the next time a similar event presents itself to you.
    But the word itself allready says it all: it is similar not exactly the same.
    So then you are not living in the Now, you are still trying to copy-paste the past.
    Your expectations and fear are keeping you from really looking at the situation you are facing NOW.

    As long as you remind yourself every now and then about who you are, the real You, consiousness, in time those conditionings will disappear by themselves. And bliss and peace will emerge in their place.

    Every now and then you will be hit by a deeper insight, this will come by itself. With me that means that for about a week I will feel total peace and bliss. And then it will be gone again. And then a month or so later it hits again.
    Sometimes it takes more time.

    But reminding yourself of your realisation every now and then, that the real you is the observer, and that the person Midnight ( remember Giles' excellent explanation that person comes from "persona" meaning mask ) is not real, is enough for now.:cool:
     
  19. Midnight

    Midnight Member

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    Wow, i was looking for someone to post something like that for a while now. :)

    I had a misconception of enlightenment being that I'd feel a deep peace and that there would be no "unappealing" emotions ever again. But what I feel now is still a wonderful thing because I feel an underlying peace beneath an emotion at all times, and I let the negative emotion unleash itself inside me, which feels way better and easier than resistance!

    Better yet, knowing my self beneath the emotion allows me to realize that whatever I'm feeling is not who I am. There's no need to try and solve anything or get rid of my current state, because it is always impermanent. There was never a need to feel hopeless, it was an illusion all along.

    Woooooaaaahhhhhhhh. :eek: :D

    I am definitely saving this thread forever. It's been life changing.
     
  20. Edwin

    Edwin Member

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    Just one more thing:

    Don't worry about the "feeling" coming and going.
    Sometimes you feel great, sometimes some thought tricks you into believing the " I " thought for a moment.

    But now you know that no matter what happens, Consciousness, or Self ALWAYS registers what happens, even the illusive " I " thought is registered effortlessly.

    So when you think you lost the feeling ( when you think ;) ) don't worry, it will come back. You never really lost it, in fact, it has always been there, even before you realised it.

    It's all quite simple once you understand what it's all about right ?
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2010

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