What Am I Missing?

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What Am I Missing?

Postby theseeker » Wed Dec 21, 2011 7:13 pm

Hi everyone,

As I am new here, I will start with a few words about myself. I am 27 years old. For the past 10 years I've been seeking, and i'm starting to feel like I'm missing something. Most things discussed on this forum, are things I feel I've heard a million times before.

Different teachings and the different perspectives offered by them, at times have been the catalysts of certain inner shifts.

My mind keeps trying to figure out this life, and keeps failing. My ego is trying to protect me. It's kind of sad, but I feel like the biggest driving foces in my life are fear and desire. Fear of pain, fear of suffering is at the root of so many of my actions and choices. Is this what this life is about?! Trying to feel good and avoid feeling bad? This feels like the truest thing about my life.

Most things I feel, most things I believe, they fade, they change, they prove to be wrong. I don't know where I'm going, I don't know where I am supposed to go. And even as I write these words, I have the sense they are merely the representation of something momentary. A snapshot of something so very fleeting.

I look around, I look at other people. At first look most of them seem fine, like they know what they are doing and why, like they have found their place in the universe. But inevitably upon a closer look, there is so much drama, so much pain, nobody seems to know anything. Not something truly significant and important. I observe people, their beliefs are so fleeting, so easily subject to change. And they don't even notice.

This can't be right, this can't be what this life is about. Unnecessary struggle and suffering.

I don't even know why I'm writing this. Am I reaching out? Does something in me believe that in writing I will find clarity, or peace? I don't know. I feel like I don't know anything anymore. I don't know how to live. I don't know how to be happy. What else matters?

What am I missing?
theseeker
 
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Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby snowheight » Wed Dec 21, 2011 7:42 pm

theseeker,

Welcome.

My guess is that if you've spent 10 years seeking then you've probably heard someone tell you already that there is nothing to seek and nowhere to go, and that while everything that you perceive inevitably changes, what you are is unchanging. You've probably read the idea that "you are the Awareness, the canvas onto which this all the unceasing movement of Form unfolds".

And yet, here you are. Those words are just another idea. Just another belief waiting to happen. They have value for many. Have they ever worked for you? ... even once, or even for just a short while? If so, what happened from there?

My questions here are really just for fun -- not at your expense, but you strike me as someone with a gentle sense of humor ... you see:

theseeker wrote:This can't be right, this can't be what this life is about. Unnecessary struggle and suffering.


... this is an ancient perspective that echoes over and over again down through the ages, and it reminds me of a very direct answer that points the way to the only question that is of any real importance.
Stop talking. Hear every sound as background. Look straight ahead and focus. Take one deep breath. This is you. This is Now.
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Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby theseeker » Wed Dec 21, 2011 10:00 pm

snowheight wrote:there is nothing to seek and nowhere to go


I observe a dynamic in my life that is the same, from the smallest, to the biggest of things. A movement away from feeling bad and toward feeling good.

That is the seeking.

In pain, relief is sought, in confusion, clarity is sought. So when I hear "there is nothing to seek", and that is what I think about. What does it mean in the context of pain and suffering?

We are hardwired to move away from pain and discomfort, whether it is physical or psychological. So what does it mean "there is nothing to seek"?

All I am really seeking, if I am honest with myself, is to feel good. And I don't see how I will ever feel good in this world, in any lasting kind of way, as long as I am a slave to my fears and desires.
theseeker
 
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Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby snowheight » Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:47 pm

theseeker wrote:All I am really seeking, if I am honest with myself, is to feel good. And I don't see how I will ever feel good in this world, in any lasting kind of way, as long as I am a slave to my fears and desires.


Yeah, this sounds about right. Of course, have you considered the obvious in that in order to feel good there has to be some relative scale on which to make the measure? How would you know the good without the bad?

theseeker wrote:I observe a dynamic in my life that is the same, from the smallest, to the biggest of things. A movement away from feeling bad and toward feeling good.

That is the seeking.

In pain, relief is sought, in confusion, clarity is sought. So when I hear "there is nothing to seek", and that is what I think about. What does it mean in the context of pain and suffering?

We are hardwired to move away from pain and discomfort, whether it is physical or psychological. So what does it mean "there is nothing to seek"?


If we do continue this conversation, we should whittle away a few things that you are probably not referring to.

For instance, if you're hungry you'll want to eat. If you're cold you'll want to put on a coat or go inside. These have nothing to do with conditioning. They are just a function of the human condition .... I'm pretty sure you're not referring to this in what you are seeking.

From there, we have to acknowledge the world that we live in, in that if we were to truly drop all conditioning, and jettison each and every scrap of our culture, we wouldn't be able to feed or clean ourselves. Think of the helplessness of an infant.

So if your car breaks down or the train or bus you rely on is closed then you either get the car fixed or pick a different route. If a sink leaks you either repeatedly mop, call a plumber or take a trip to the hardware store ... I'm pretty sure you're not referring to this in what you are seeking.

And of course, not all pain is always run away from ... you might go to the gym to improve your health, you might put in extra time at work in pursuit of a promotion or overtime pay.

------------------

So what is left after this narrowing down ... I can't speak for you ... you might even want to include some of the baggage I've thrown out the window here in what it is that you are seeking. Only you can say. Feel free to elaborate.

theseeker wrote:In pain, relief is sought, in confusion, clarity is sought. So when I hear "there is nothing to seek", and that is what I think about. What does it mean in the context of pain and suffering?


The mind hears the answer to this in an odd alien way ... I'd almost go as far as to say that there is no real rational way to present it ... almost, but I've seen others make the presentation quite well ... but I'm not them so I'll refrain, but I can tell you that there is non-mental knowing of this answer. It has to do, as I'm sure you've heard before, with who you think you are.
Stop talking. Hear every sound as background. Look straight ahead and focus. Take one deep breath. This is you. This is Now.
snowheight
 
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Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby randomguy » Thu Dec 22, 2011 12:38 am

theseeker wrote:I don't even know why I'm writing this. Am I reaching out? Does something in me believe that in writing I will find clarity, or peace? I don't know. I feel like I don't know anything anymore. I don't know how to live. I don't know how to be happy. What else matters?

What am I missing?

That you don't have to know these things.
Do the yellow-rose petals
tremble and fall
at the rapid's roar?
- Basho
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Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby nightowl » Thu Dec 22, 2011 2:53 am

theseeker wrote:In pain, relief is sought, in confusion, clarity is sought. So when I hear "there is nothing to seek", and that is what I think about. What does it mean in the context of pain and suffering?

It means that everything is right here right now. It is as it is. Life does not cause pain and suffering. Mental stories causes pain and suffering.

The pain and confusion may be caused because you are still trying to find answers, chase desires, and avoid negativity with the mind. Here's the thing - stop paying attention to the chatter. Don't try to stop it, don't try to change it - just let it do it's own thing. Sometimes it will make you feel sad, other times angry, other times happy. That's OK. Just be what you are feeling at the moment. Don't add anything...you'll be ok.

My mind keeps trying to figure out this life, and keeps failing.

As it always will.
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Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby theseeker » Thu Dec 22, 2011 9:27 am

nightowl wrote:
theseeker wrote:In pain, relief is sought, in confusion, clarity is sought. So when I hear "there is nothing to seek", and that is what I think about. What does it mean in the context of pain and suffering?

It means that everything is right here right now. It is as it is. Life does not cause pain and suffering. Mental stories causes pain and suffering.


I'm open to the possibility that pain must not always cause suffering, but of course pain itself is an inevitable part of life, it isn't something merely caused by the mind. Its very function is to bring our attention to itself and to drive us to action. It isn't something merely to be observed/accepted/ignored.

I'd really love to hear the personal experiences of people who have themselves experienced physical / mental / emotional pain in a different kind of way than how it is normally experienced, perhaps without the inner resistance, perhaps without suffering? But please share personal experiences, not your understanding of the subject.
theseeker
 
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Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby snowheight » Thu Dec 22, 2011 10:22 am

Threw out my back a few weeks ago.

Pain? :lol:

It was during the renovation ... previous to starting this work about a year ago I'd been able to keep this managed with yoga and paying attention to the way I moved .. before I'd discovered that 10 years ago I had given up on alot of physical activity ... I had replaced running with walking and that was observed to really suck. No way 10 years ago I would have even considered doing such a thing, as the situation was just out of control. Every day was just lots of physical pain with every movement.

Well anyway the reno was a sure mind wanderer and source of resistance ... definitely forgot who I was ... the yoga languished ... one day, I got impatient pulling up some floor tile.

Well anyway about 2 weeks ago, when it was really really bad I forced myself to go out and walk.

Pain? :lol:

At the end the body's endorphins kicked in ... but you know what? I stayed there for the whole walk, every physically excruciating step.

Intense pain, inner-peace ... it's all just a trick of the nervous system. :) ... seriously, it was the exact same experience in the final analysis.
Stop talking. Hear every sound as background. Look straight ahead and focus. Take one deep breath. This is you. This is Now.
snowheight
 
Posts: 1942
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2010 11:56 pm

Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby hanss » Thu Dec 22, 2011 10:35 am

randomguy wrote:
theseeker wrote:I don't even know why I'm writing this. Am I reaching out? Does something in me believe that in writing I will find clarity, or peace? I don't know. I feel like I don't know anything anymore. I don't know how to live. I don't know how to be happy. What else matters?

What am I missing?

That you don't have to know these things.


:!:
"In today's rush we all think too much, seek too much, want too much and forget about the joy of just Being."
(Eckhart Tolle)
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Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby nightowl » Thu Dec 22, 2011 10:43 am

theseeker wrote:I'm open to the possibility that pain must not always cause suffering, but of course pain itself is an inevitable part of life, it isn't something merely caused by the mind.
Pain is inevitable - it's how our bodies are designed. But I'm not talking about the pain you feel when you stick your hand in a fire.

Its very function is to bring our attention to itself and to drive us to action. It isn't something merely to be observed/accepted/ignored.
You stick your hand in a fire and it ain't gonna stay there. You don't need a mind to tell you to pull it the hell out.

I'd really love to hear the personal experiences of people who have themselves experienced physical / mental / emotional pain in a different kind of way than how it is normally experienced, perhaps without the inner resistance, perhaps without suffering? But please share personal experiences, not your understanding of the subject.
For the past few months I've been at the center of an office firestorm. High pressure, tight deadlines, long hours. Every day the external pressure gets worse - yet every day I feel increasingly calm and peaceful.

Emotional pain is mind generated. The mind is tremendously powerful, look at all the wonderful things it can accomplish. It can also generate confusion and suffering when you think you are somehow a 'part' of that thought. Let the thoughts run free - trying to manipulate them in the hopes you'll feel better is futile.
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Re: What Am I Missing?

Postby Ziendus » Thu Dec 22, 2011 6:53 pm

Seek:
> as long as I am a slave to my fears and desires

That is an experience.
One of many.
And all experiences take place in this crystal clarity in which everything is experienced.
This clarity is here, right?
All experiences always take place "here".
"Here", "now", is this clarity.
You know that this clarity, in which all experience takes place, is here.
You can deny it, but that denial also takes place in this clarity.
You know this clarity, this clarity is knowing.
It is not understanding, but pure knowing.
Understanding takes place in this knowing.
And though you do not understand this clarity, nor can you grasp it,
if this clarity gets included in your focus,
it will make things lighter.
---ooOoo---
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