Regards from hell

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Regards from hell

Postby matt74ike » Thu Oct 25, 2012 2:17 am

About two years ago I wrote a couple of posts here, so I don’t consider myself newcomer, but... actually I’m starting (maybe) my spiritual path all over again. These two years of mine are financial and family hell. I’m on the brink of bankruptcy, and in consequence of this my marriage is in serious crisis.

Today after two years I reminded myself of this forum and asked myself what happened with this spiritual man I used to be? Why I stepped off the spiritual path and why I’m so deep into ego? The answer is that I felt cheated. I thought that such a huge problems should not happen to someone who is on spiritual path. I thought that I just have to be here and now, in acceptance and problems will be solved by themselves. I just repeated to myself and my wife: “everything will be fine”. The truth is that I was USING here&now, acceptance and meditation to escape from problems. I was using spirituality to forget about hard decisions I should make.

And here I am with low self esteem and no idea how to fix my life.
Maybe my story will help someone to wake up earlier than me.
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby karmarider » Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:02 am

matt74ike wrote:... actually I’m starting (maybe) my spiritual path all over again.


Why?

These two years of mine are financial and family hell. I’m on the brink of bankruptcy, and in consequence of this my marriage is in serious crisis.


I'm sorry to hear that.

Today after two years I reminded myself of this forum and asked myself what happened with this spiritual man I used to be? Why I stepped off the spiritual path and why I’m so deep into ego? The answer is that I felt cheated. I thought that such a huge problems should not happen to someone who is on spiritual path. I thought that I just have to be here and now, in acceptance and problems will be solved by themselves. I just repeated to myself and my wife: “everything will be fine”. The truth is that I was USING here&now, acceptance and meditation to escape from problems. I was using spirituality to forget about hard decisions I should make.


Spirituality is about escape.

And here I am with low self esteem and no idea how to fix my life.
Maybe my story will help someone to wake up earlier than me.


Probably not. The spiritualized ego is a tough nut to crack.

What do you plan to do now?
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby rachMiel » Thu Oct 25, 2012 4:21 am

matt74ike wrote:The truth is that I was USING here&now, acceptance and meditation to escape from problems. I was using spirituality to forget about hard decisions I should make.

You can use pretty much anything as a psychological crutch. But that doesn't necessarily mean the thing itself is harmful. I think presence, acceptance, and meditation are all good things ... provided they are practiced correctly and with the right intentions. And there's nothing wrong with resurrecting temporarily sidelined practices. You may well see/experience them in a new, healthy light. Fall down six times, get up seven. Right?
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby Webwanderer » Thu Oct 25, 2012 4:58 am

karmarider wrote:Spirituality is about escape.

For some maybe, but at it's heart spirituality is mostly about context. And even as escape it's about an escape from an egoic trap that one may well wish to be free of. So escape can be a good thing when it's about freedom from a self made hell. Just seek to make it an escape to clarity and not into just another ego trap.

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Re: Regards from hell

Postby rideforever » Thu Oct 25, 2012 9:24 am

I am 41, never married. Many regrets really ... perhaps I could have helped myself sooner if I had understood, so many wasted years and opportunities. So much struggling and pain.

Last year I tried to really face a lot of pain, pain of my parents passing, it was very difficult and overwhelming.

I feel better for those difficult months, and I feel better able to understand my life.
I was proud, and I demanded the finest teacher
.. .. and when he appeared
.. .. .. .. I was so small
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby matt74ike » Thu Oct 25, 2012 11:26 am

karmarider wrote:
matt74ike wrote:... actually I’m starting (maybe) my spiritual path all over again.


Why?



My first thought: to feel better, to think clearer.
Intellectually I know that every kind of seek is simply ego response. That doesn't matter what we seek - even spiritual enlightment - that's voice of our ego which wants something. Ego has concepts like: "I'm not good enough", "I'm not there yet" etc.
BUT I'm not going to pretend "spiritual man", my honest answer to question why I'm going to start spiritual path again is to: feel better, think clearer, be nicer to my wife and kids.


karmarider wrote:What do you plan to do now?

My wife asks me this every day. Sometimes I think I know what to do, there are days when I have plan, but when phone from banks starts to ring, when I get mails from creditors - then I feel only numbness.
Matt
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby matt74ike » Thu Oct 25, 2012 11:36 am

rachMiel wrote:You can use pretty much anything as a psychological crutch. But that doesn't necessarily mean the thing itself is harmful. I think presence, acceptance, and meditation are all good things ... provided they are practiced correctly and with the right intentions.


Having "right intentions" is easier said than done. Two years ago I thought I'm practicing with the right intentions.
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby rachMiel » Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:17 pm

matt74ike wrote:
rachMiel wrote:You can use pretty much anything as a psychological crutch. But that doesn't necessarily mean the thing itself is harmful. I think presence, acceptance, and meditation are all good things ... provided they are practiced correctly and with the right intentions.

Having "right intentions" is easier said than done. Two years ago I thought I'm practicing with the right intentions.

We all fool ourselves. Or, more accurately I think: Thought is a consummate trickster. That's why intense and thorough dis-illusionment is so important. Maybe you'll get it the second time around, Matt? "A sadder man but wiser now ..." kind of thing. :-)
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby matt74ike » Thu Oct 25, 2012 4:31 pm

rachMiel wrote: That's why intense and thorough dis-illusionment is so important. Maybe you'll get it the second time around, Matt? "A sadder man but wiser now ..." kind of thing. :-)


The older I get the more I lean towards: Scio me nihil scire :)
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby karmarider » Thu Oct 25, 2012 5:30 pm

matt74ike wrote:
karmarider wrote:
matt74ike wrote:... actually I’m starting (maybe) my spiritual path all over again.


Why?



My first thought: to feel better, to think clearer.


Would it be fair to say that what you seek is just the satisfaction of life regardless of circumstances? You want this because you know it's possible.

Intellectually I know that every kind of seek is simply ego response. That doesn't matter what we seek - even spiritual enlightment - that's voice of our ego which wants something. Ego has concepts like: "I'm not good enough", "I'm not there yet" etc.
BUT I'm not going to pretend "spiritual man", my honest answer to question why I'm going to start spiritual path again is to: feel better, think clearer, be nicer to my wife and kids.


Whenever someone says they are done with spirituality, I feel it is good reason to celeberate.

I came to the same realization as you have about two years. For me, it was a very happy event. I realized that the only problem there was, was fear. With great relief, I gave up spiritual ideas and practices. All I had to do was to find a solution to the fear of life.

After a while I found John Sherman who validated my realization that the only problem is a basic fear. And he offered the same solution which Nisargadatta and Ramana had--except that John Sherman is very clear so I understood how to do looking-at-you.

I don't know yet if the looking works for certain, but it has for many and I have some confirmation in myself.

Clearly, things don't have to go for you the way they did for me. But in my view, the stepping back from spirituality is an important step in anyone's journey.

karmarider wrote:What do you plan to do now?
My wife asks me this every day. Sometimes I think I know what to do, there are days when I have plan, but when phone from banks starts to ring, when I get mails from creditors - then I feel only numbness.


Yes, I understand. You will find your next step soon enough.
Last edited by karmarider on Thu Oct 25, 2012 6:29 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby karmarider » Thu Oct 25, 2012 5:46 pm

Webwanderer wrote:
karmarider wrote:Spirituality is about escape.

For some maybe, but at it's heart spirituality is mostly about context.


Everything is. In the context of the OP's experience, and in my experience, spirituality is about escape. And it's reasonable to say this is generally true, because nobody can point to any spiritual knowledge, practice, method or understanding which had freed human beings.

And even as escape it's about an escape from an egoic trap that one may well wish to be free of. So escape can be a good thing when it's about freedom from a self made hell. Just seek to make it an escape to clarity and not into just another ego trap.

WW


I understand what you're saying, but if we take out the recursion of words, what I'm saying simply is the spirituality has not worked definitively. Neither has any other human endeavor.

That's because the basic problem is simple and very human. It's not spiritual or philosophical or bigger-than-life.

It's fascinating that the fact that spirituality has not worked is observable and obvious, and yet it's so difficult for people to see, and those who see it only see it with reluctance and qualification. Maybe it's because of the fear that spirituality is our last hope.

It actually isn't. After spirituality comes self-reliance.
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby rachMiel » Thu Oct 25, 2012 6:49 pm

matt74ike wrote:
rachMiel wrote: That's why intense and thorough dis-illusionment is so important. Maybe you'll get it the second time around, Matt? "A sadder man but wiser now ..." kind of thing. :-)

The older I get the more I lean towards: Scio me nihil scire :)

Interesting to put these two together:

Know thyself.
Know that you know nothing.

I love paradoxes! A deep primal energy often arises when I think about them.
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby Webwanderer » Thu Oct 25, 2012 7:19 pm

karmarider wrote:I understand what you're saying, but if we take out the recursion of words, what I'm saying simply is the spirituality has not worked.

Can you really speak for everyone? I will accept that you believe spirituality has not worked for you, but it may well be beyond your capacity to speak for everyone else.

If, as you say, everything is about context, are you saying a different context of any possible type is not helpful in changing one's experience of life? Did not you change context as a result of reading John Sherman? Even if the change in context was from less certainty to more certainty? Do we not routinely evolve our context of life throughout our life?

Is it possible that you simply don't understand with any real clarity the experience of a non-physical context of being? From my own experience I have found a spiritual context enormously freeing. It's broad enough to be inclusive of every other context I have considered, and it's effective enough to bring more joy and happiness to my life than any other context I've lived through. Shall I discard it because you say it doesn't work?


The basic problem is simple and very human. It's not spiritual or philosophical or bigger-than-life.

Is the 'bigger than life' strawman a fair characterization? Who has said any context is bigger than life? Life is - and it's likely bigger than any context. In a truer sense there is not spiritual life and human life. There is simply life capable of experiencing unique conditions. One condition does not preclude another. The way I see it: Life Is. Contexts are simply unique life perspectives/experiences.

It's fascinating that the fact that spirituality has not worked is observable and obvious, and yet it's so difficult for people to see, and those who see it only see it with reluctance and qualification. Maybe it's because of the fear that spirituality is our last hope.

Quite a definitive statement. You would be hard pressed however, to demonstrate the 'fact' that spirituality has not worked for anyone. I will be your first failure in proving that 'fact'. I suspect there are a number of others on this forum and throughout the world's population where such 'facts' will likewise fall short.

Wouldn't it be far more accurate and honest for you to simply say that you have found a way that was effective yet not spiritual in its approach. There's no need to discount another's path to peace and clarity. What matters is effectiveness in enhancing clarity and a joyful appreciation of life, is it not?

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Re: Regards from hell

Postby karmarider » Fri Oct 26, 2012 12:19 am

Webwanderer wrote:
karmarider wrote:I understand what you're saying, but if we take out the recursion of words, what I'm saying simply is the spirituality has not worked.

Can you really speak for everyone? I will accept that you believe spirituality has not worked for you, but it may well be beyond your capacity to speak for everyone else.


Spirituality is broad term of course. To the extent that it is about finding about the truth of being human, yes, I can say that it has failed humanity. Spirituality has not improved the human condition.

How spirituality affects any individual person--neither I nor anyone else can say.

I can say that it was the failure of spirituality which helped me the most.

If, as you say, everything is about context, are you saying a different context of any possible type is not helpful in changing one's experience of life? Did not you change context as a result of reading John Sherman? Even if the change in context was from less certainty to more certainty? Do we not routinely evolve our context of life throughout our life?


That's pretty much what life is all about.

Is it possible that you simply don't understand with any real clarity the experience of a non-physical context of being?


The fear in me which had previously made me reach for these sort of spiritual concepts is happily gone. I'm curious about some things--but they don't define me and I don't need them to be true or untrue.

From my own experience I have found a spiritual context enormously freeing.


Then you might find the freedom from spritual context an enormous relief.

It's broad enough to be inclusive of every other context I have considered, and it's effective enough to bring more joy and happiness to my life than any other context I've lived through. Shall I discard it because you say it doesn't work?


I hope not. What I said was an invitiation to see the context of spirituality is not needed for freedom.

The basic problem is simple and very human. It's not spiritual or philosophical or bigger-than-life.

Is the 'bigger than life' strawman a fair characterization? Who has said any context is bigger than life? Life is - and it's likely bigger than any context. In a truer sense there is not spiritual life and human life. There is simply life capable of experiencing unique conditions. One condition does not preclude another. The way I see it: Life Is. Contexts are simply unique life perspectives/experiences.


I agree. Life is life. Spirituality are particular perspectives about life.

It's fascinating that the fact that spirituality has not worked is observable and obvious, and yet it's so difficult for people to see, and those who see it only see it with reluctance and qualification. Maybe it's because of the fear that spirituality is our last hope.

Quite a definitive statement. You would be hard pressed however, to demonstrate the 'fact' that spirituality has not worked for anyone. I will be your first failure in proving that 'fact'. I suspect there are a number of others on this forum and throughout the world's population where such 'facts' will likewise fall short.


I can't say how spirituality plays a helpful or harmful role for any particular person. I personally got started because of Eckhart Tolle.

I'm sure there are many who have been helped by spirituality.

But spirituality has not provided a clear explanation of the problem or solution to the condition of humanity.

I'm not trying to convince people who are already spiritual.That's an enormous task. I was just celeberating the OP's realization. It's an important milestone.

Wouldn't it be far more accurate and honest for you to simply say that you have found a way that was effective yet not spiritual in its approach.


That's what I'm saying.

There's no need to discount another's path to peace and clarity.


I wasn't doing that. I was celeberating the OP's event of realizing that spirituality doesn't work, as it is the beginning of self-reliance. And it was an invitation for others to honestly consider the efficacy of their spiritual ideas.

What matters is effectiveness in enhancing clarity and a joyful appreciation of life, is it not?


Of course.
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Re: Regards from hell

Postby Webwanderer » Fri Oct 26, 2012 1:41 am

karmarider wrote:To the extent that it is about finding about the truth of being human, yes, I can say that it has failed humanity. Spirituality has not improved the human condition.

Perhaps it is your vision that is too narrowly focused. Without a clear understanding of the spiritual nature of life, how can you gauge the success or failure of this physical human environment? What is your measure of success to have judged it a failure? And whatever that measure might be, is it not a product of your focus?


From my own experience I have found a spiritual context enormously freeing.


Then you might find the freedom from spritual context an enormous relief.

And if I cut my heart out I might I might find relief from all that annoying beating going on in my chest. It seems I've only just scratched the surface to the gifts such a perspective has to offer. And besides, I'm having way too much fun.

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