Being present while being active, and quality of thoughts.

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Being present while being active, and quality of thoughts.

Postby ssdrdw » Thu Apr 16, 2015 3:07 pm

Hey , first of all I'm new to this.
I came from a point where I was in my head at least 95% of the time. Got me to feel terrible and have the external symptoms of depression, anxiety (social and not social), ADHD (can barely read anything, watch a movie, listen to people), BPD, Autism, Derealization, chronic fatigue, OCD and what not .
Every little thing in the world, has a huge distorted theory stored in my head, from years of this condition. My thoughts were absolutely retarded.
I came to realise something is psychologically wrong, after trying every possible medical test, and a few prescription pills. Once in a while, I feel like my brain works normally for a short while. I can see how stupid my thoughts and theories are, how bad I feel over nothing, and at that time when my brain works normally I also feel good, relaxed and in the moment. Also I wasn't anything like this as a child.
I've been practicing meditation and mindfulness throughout the day for about a year, with slow progress.
Now I can be in the moment sometimes when meditating or when doing a monotonic activity. But give me the smallest task that requires some use of planning and memory, and to do it properly I have to lose the moment completely, and even then I will do some really stupid mistakes.
I really do know I'm not simply "retarded". I had the best grades in my class in highschool until this thing started, and at those times when my brain works normally I can instinctively feel every kind of manipulation in social situations, be happy, relaxed, in the moment ...
What I did notice is the "low quality thoughts" are said verbally in my head, they're somehow "forced thoughts".
When I have "high quality thoughts", those are just immediate instinctive observations ...
Unfortunately I have to keep using those "forced thoughts" to function in day to day life in every aspect. The result is further disconnection from the moment and from the high quality natural thoughts.

Anyone has something to share about these problems ?
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby lmp » Thu Apr 16, 2015 6:43 pm

Hi,

I suffer. What can I do to resolve it?

I think the above is THE spiritual question. Suffering is a fact, some suffer more than others, and it is correct to do something, we must do something. There is no fixed plan for what we must or can do.

Life has a lot of demands, work, money, education, family life, desires, fears etc etc. Can I, for myself look very simply at what is a simple enjoyable life for me to live, my path so to speak, a life where I am not being consumed by the complex business that man has made of it.

How do I wish to live? I will put aside all things that are merely a conforming to society, that are not my own wish.

This way things will slow down, problems will be solved, there will be difficult ones to solve for sure - but the peace of thinking for oneself will arrive and the pain of being tackled left and right will leave.

That's my outlook on my life anyway.
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby ssdrdw » Fri Apr 17, 2015 7:10 pm

Let me focus on my problem with being active and present ,
I feel like I'm used to plan every movement and "mini-decision", even where to look. I have an "idea" in my mind a moment before it happens, then I choose to "deploy" that idea (or not). When I want to drop off any thinking and planning, I seem to lack the ability to function naturally, effortlessly. I can kind of function on "auto pilot" and do a million mistakes in everything I do.
I noticed the way I function now, draws a lot of energy from me and keeps my further in my mind, and reinforce this habit I developed a few years ago . As a child for example, things like this just happen naturally. It's like I neglected the natural decision-making process, and now I'm stuck where I'm so unattached from it, that I have to keep planning everything without the option to reconnect to that. This might be the main thing that keeps me from being in the moment.
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby lmp » Sun Apr 19, 2015 12:30 pm

you wrote: " I seem to lack the ability to function naturally, effortlessly. I can kind of function on "auto pilot" and do a million mistakes in everything I do."

"now I'm stuck where I'm so unattached from it, that I have to keep planning everything without the option to reconnect to that."

Let's try and understand each other a little bit better. In a couple of hours time I'm going to go to a lake with a (spiritual) friend. He wants to show me this beautiful spot in the forest by the lake and we intend to get a fire going and make some simple food, like a barbecue perhaps. I expect it to be very relaxed and enjoyable.

As we grow up we are taught to concentrate, focus on a certain task and I could easily be planning, thinking lots of things out for the event of the day, but rather I'm thinking it will work itself out and whatever way it comes to play itself out is fine. I'll just put some stuff in a bag and go. The main event somehow is to talk about life and enjoy a beatiful environment, thats all.

If I were to ask you what would the 'million mistakes' you could see yourself doing under such an event as I described above?

You see one of the things involved in thinking, as I see it, is that we have made up our minds about what we are going to think about, we are concentrating on something, and we might view other thoughts as a failure or a wandering off. The concentration becomes like a center that judges all thoughts, but if the mind is free to wander left and right, there is interest or attention to every path it might take. To me I have come to realize that if the mind is free to go wherever it wants to go, it gradually settles with the task at hand since that is most useful.

I don't know if that relates to what you just said or not, I do agree that when I (we) was a child any activity seemed quite natural. But that's another story about loss of freedom and so forth, a comparison. I have looked at my childhood a lot in my efforts to understand the mind and how it works.
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby DavidB » Mon Apr 20, 2015 12:32 pm

Hi ssdrdw, welcome.

Undoing unconscious repetitive thoughts and behaviors takes time and effort. At first it feels forced and alien, but the more we practice, the better we become and eventually the new healthy behavior becomes our new normal. When it eventually becomes normal, we no longer notice it, and then it no longer feels alien.

Sounds like you have a form of OCD, where you anticipate everything before hand and have a plan for every eventuality. This would be exhausting, no wonder you had chronic fatigue, depression and anxiety. Your mind sounds like it is way too overactive, attempting to control every aspect of your waking consciousness, making it quite unbearable it seems.

Like I said, this undoing takes time and effort. It took plenty of time to become so completely unconscious and it takes time to undo that. We can realize our true nature immediately of course, but this doesn't then mean that we no longer have personality problems that we learned as we grew. These personality problems can take a lot of work to undo, in fact, I don't think we ever really truly undo them all. Human existence is a journey which cannot be perfected, so we will always have some faults and flaws, which is perfectly ok, so long as we can accept that as it is.
“Wisdom is knowing I am nothing, Love is knowing I am everything, and between the two my life moves.” ― Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby ssdrdw » Tue Apr 21, 2015 9:13 pm

Thanks for the comments
I feel like 95% of the time I just feel\think\act in old patterns that I'm used to, instead of being present and having a feeling that is relevant to the situation.
I know for sure I don't have a real problem that can't be fixed psychologically.
But I really don't know how to progress. I'm currently meditating up to 2 hours a day, and trying to stop every "forced"\verbal thought. I can make a distinction since "forced" thoughts are usually verbal\vocal in my head, and take time and take my attention out of reality. Natural thoughts are just very quick observations that take no effort or attention. I am also trying to feel my breathing, my legs, my weight throughout the day.
This brings me to a weird question, when I stop all thoughts, and just feel the breath, I hear my breathing in my head. But this sound isn't coming from the breathing, it is generated in the head. I tried but I cannot stop it. Can you share your experience ? Do you have this sound too?
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby ssdrdw » Tue Apr 21, 2015 10:06 pm

Also, about presence/mindfulness
I think I might get this all wrong , and put my attention half a second on the past. Notice what I felt a moment ago from my memory.
This might be the key problem for me (maybe for many other newbies). I'm not sure I know how to put my attention at my real time experience, but rather only a moment later on the memory of it.
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby tod » Wed Apr 22, 2015 3:18 am

ssdrdw wrote:Also, about presence/mindfulness
I think I might get this all wrong , and put my attention half a second on the past. Notice what I felt a moment ago from my memory.
This might be the key problem for me (maybe for many other newbies). I'm not sure I know how to put my attention at my real time experience, but rather only a moment later on the memory of it.


Hi ssdrdw.
Have you considered that you cannot put your attention on your "real time experience" because that is what you are.
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby DavidB » Wed Apr 22, 2015 3:47 am

You cannot stop thinking, that is impossible.

Thoughts emerge on their own, they do not seek approval before emerging. We become aware of the thoughts as they emerge, not before they emerge. We therefore are the awareness of the thoughts, not the creator of the thoughts. You did not create your thoughts, thoughts just happen, like breathing happens and the heart beat happens and the circulatory system happens.

We make the mistake of identifying with thoughts and believing that is who we are. This is a mistaken identity, a phantom self, an apparition of past experiences, a fantasy.

We are the awareness in which the thoughts have emerged. We therefore have no form to speak of, no center, nothing to point at and say, here I am, this is me.

We do not need to claim ownership of the thoughts that emerge within us, they simply emerge from nothingness, exist for while, and then dissolve back into nothingness, from which they came.

Our only task is not to identify with any particular thought pattern which emerges, not becoming stuck or glued to any particular wave form. Don't try and stop thinking, this is impossible and only results in creating a further layer of problems. The me trying not to think, for example. It is better to simply allow the thoughts to be as they are, as they are already anyway, and then not follow that thought to where it may lead. Allow the thoughts to drop back into nothingness. If they hang around for a while, like an uncomfortable mood for example, then allow that mood to be there as it is, without resistance. The mood, or thought, are temporary (temporal) apparitions, and will always eventually dissolve.

Good luck.
“Wisdom is knowing I am nothing, Love is knowing I am everything, and between the two my life moves.” ― Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby lmp » Wed Apr 22, 2015 10:04 am

You wrote:
"Thanks for the comments
I feel like 95% of the time I just feel\think\act in old patterns that I'm used to, instead of being present and having a feeling that is relevant to the situation."

...I used to have serious doubts about whether or not I could have an original thought, much like you describe that is "relevant to the situation". But somehow we are trained to associate what we see with what we know and to use memory and exercise our knowledge about what we see and do. This way when we see a certain flower I think about my mother and you think about your birthday and when I see a certain person I may feel like or dislike about something that happened before. We dont see only the flower or the person so to speak, but also what happened yesterday or a year ago.

I believe we are much to eager to want to change things in a certain way (to stop thought is an idea for instance) but if we instead observe and learn about how things actually work and really understand them well, then a change will come, but the change might be different from what we at first imagine, more simple, more accurate, more correct. You know when we really understand something there is suddenly little or no point in doing it the wrong way, just like we don't hold a glass upside down when we drink because there is really no point in doing so.

Does that make sense to you? The next question may then be how do we observe and learn about a certain issue, this one for instance, do we meditate for 2 hours a day or what do we do, right?
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby lmp » Wed Apr 22, 2015 11:40 am

- you wrote:
I know for sure I don't have a real problem that can't be fixed psychologically.
But I really don't know how to progress. I'm currently meditating up to 2 hours a day, and trying to stop every "forced"\verbal thought. I can make a distinction since "forced" thoughts are usually verbal\vocal in my head, and take time and take my attention out of reality. Natural thoughts are just very quick observations that take no effort or attention.

...It is not dangerous to try and stop thought, unless one does so for years and years, in order to see what the result might be. In doing this it is however overlooked that it is thought itself that wishes to do this. This means that one thought decides that another thought should not be, so the result is really a situation of thoughts condemning each other, not an end of thoughts. By "forced thoughts" I take it you mean the thoughts that come because we unfortunately have become narrow-minded in our thinking, racist, religious, moral, imbecille etc etc, not even these can be deleted or chosen to be unwanted. They must be dealt with differently.

- You wrote:
I am also trying to feel my breathing, my legs, my weight throughout the day.
This brings me to a weird question, when I stop all thoughts, and just feel the breath, I hear my breathing in my head. But this sound isn't coming from the breathing, it is generated in the head. I tried but I cannot stop it. Can you share your experience ? Do you have this sound too?

...I do not have this thing. Personally I would just let it go, unless you are interested in finding out what it is. The body is full of phenomena, tinnitus etc. I have no idea what to say about it.

- you wrote:
Also, about presence/mindfulness
I think I might get this all wrong , and put my attention half a second on the past. Notice what I felt a moment ago from my memory.
This might be the key problem for me (maybe for many other newbies). I'm not sure I know how to put my attention at my real time experience, but rather only a moment later on the memory of it.

...This is a good question. Actually you are aware "the real time experience", you are aware of the stars, the sky, the trees, people, right. Most people though are not aware that there is something fishy with our response or reaction to this, the thoughts and emotions that we have and how vast this response is and goes, but you seem to be aware of this response and are questioning regarding it. For me, examining memory and how it operates is very interesting. I'd say this is the area that is very very close to the root of our psychological troubles.
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby ssdrdw » Fri Apr 24, 2015 2:21 pm

Thanks for the comments
When I dis-attach myself from my emotions and thoughts, the way I know to do it - Assume they all come on themselves, I'm not responsible for them, there's no need to fix them, investigate them, judge them etc, it helps me ease of my anxiety and stress. The only effective way I ever found to ease it off is to stop taking it as a problem and "accept" it. But, this also makes me a lot less responsible and concentrated while driving, and even in everyday activities - I started to make careless mistakes, let my meditation fade into sleep etc ...
So I'm taking this wrong. On the other hand if I do the opposite, my thoughts and feelings will drive me crazy ...
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby lmp » Fri Apr 24, 2015 5:40 pm

What kind of thoughts and feelings drive you crazy, if you can be specific? Is it a normal reaction? We live in a world where we are exploited for so many reasons, should we not have strong feelings at all about it? If someone steals my car, should I meditate in order not to feel bad about it? There are poor people living in tents not far from where I live, should it not upset me?

I'm just asking.
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Re: Being present while being active, and quality of thought

Postby tod » Sat Apr 25, 2015 1:10 am

ssdrdw wrote:Thanks for the comments
When I dis-attach myself from my emotions and thoughts, the way I know to do it - Assume they all come on themselves, I'm not responsible for them, there's no need to fix them, investigate them, judge them etc, it helps me ease of my anxiety and stress. The only effective way I ever found to ease it off is to stop taking it as a problem and "accept" it. But, this also makes me a lot less responsible and concentrated while driving, and even in everyday activities - I started to make careless mistakes, let my meditation fade into sleep etc ...
So I'm taking this wrong. On the other hand if I do the opposite, my thoughts and feelings will drive me crazy ...


Look at becoming a lot less controlling/judgemental on what is a mistake or what should/shouldn't be happening. It is quite a scary ride for the ego, or a thought-to-be-person, but pure joy when it is seen that no one is taking it...

...And impossible to be driven crazy if you do not believe personal thoughts.
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