Posts Tagged ‘depression

06
Feb
09

You can’t always get what you want, but you may find you get what you need

Is synthetic happiness equal to happiness you stumble upon?  Science seems to think so. Being with what “is” appears to be able to make us happy.   That’s why advertising to Zen monks isn’t necessarily profitable . . .

06
Nov
08

My illusions

It is very common for me to over identify myself with my thoughts or feelings.  Like my thoughts are, oh so important and my current feelings are,  oh so real.  Ever do that?

The reality is everything changes.  My thoughts about issues change as I get more information, or as I process something, or with hindsight.  My feelings can change even faster depending on what song is playing on the radio, or if someone cuts me off on the highway, or if my niece gives me a hug.  It’s all Impermanence.

Remember, no matter what it is, “this too shall pass”.  (Our electoral process alone is a great example of that)

That’s where meditation is centering for me. It allows me to step back and observe (with a gentleness and kindness) what is going on in my head (without judgement) and also what I’m feeling at the moment (without over identification).
To paraphrase some of Wilber’s thoughts – it’s the big “I” observing the little “i”.  The Greater Self behind the self.

Now my habits often keep me in a “mindless” state rather than a “mindfull” presence.  But even just a few moments a day of reconnecting with the big “I” can not only change thoughts and feelings but can even change heart rate, blood pressure and sleep.  I’m not even talking about hours – just a few minutes of reconnecting. The biggest change over the years has been one of nonjudgement.  I don’t beat myself up for not meditating; I’m a lot kinder to myself.  I just make time to meditate again without spending a lot of energy on the “missed” meditation or mindful times.  (Genpo Roshi’s “Big Mind and Big Heart” helped  me evolve in this)

I also believe in clinical depression and medication (this is not a post about how quickly we tend to take a pill to solve a “feeling”, but  to say there is a “place” for science and meds).  If you take medication for a chemical imbalance, it can enhance the  “observing process” of meditation.  Often times it is too painful to observe without it.  Just don’t overidentify with your diagnosis, remember being say, “bipolar” is just a part of who you are – and all the more reason to not over identify with thoughts or feelings (which is common to that diagnosis).

Here is a quote from ~ Anthony de Mello, 20th century Jesuit priest
from Awareness.
It speaks of this over identification well:

“Don’t say, “I am depressed.” If you want to say, “It is depressed,” that’s all right. If you want to say that depression is there, that’s fine; if you want to say gloominess is there, that’s fine. But not: I am gloomy. You’re defining yourself in terms of the feeling. That’s your illusion; that’s your mistake. There is a depression there right now, but let it be, leave it alone. It will pass. Everything passes, everything. Your depressions and your thrills have nothing to do with happiness. Those are swings of the pendulum. If you seek kicks or thrills, get ready for depression. Do you want your drug? Get ready for the hangover. One end of the pendulum swings over to the other.”

Thanks for stopping by,
John




Live'n Aloha on Maui.
Lately just posting pics, artwork, vids, & music with just a headline (less seems to be more).
Into Wilber, Beck, Zen Stuffs, Spiritual Concepts, Philosophy and Humor (kinda geeky humor).
Currently attempting to strengthen my meditation skills (this has been a 20 yr process).
Thanks for stopp'n by and please leave a comment. Poz or Neg, all comments welcome.
"I don't like Spam" (said with a British accent)

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