Feelings as a compass

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Feelings as a compass

Postby Maringa » Wed Jan 28, 2015 11:08 pm

I used to be a fairly neurotic and paranoid person, with a lot of negative feelings, but then I came into contact with Katie Byron. Her method is to question "is it true?" whenever we have a negative thought pattern, and inquire to find what's true for us.

After doing the inquire it always feels much better, and now I've realized that I don't have to do it any more. If I feel bad about something, a thought for example "they don't like me" "why did he do that?" I know instantly that it isn't true because it feels BAD. If something FEELS GOOD, it's TRUE for me and if it feels BAD it's not true for me. I believe a thought that's not true.


This revelation is fantastic, it's so easy! :D

Any one else using feelings this way?
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Re: Feelings as a compass

Postby Enlightened2B » Thu Jan 29, 2015 12:07 am

I have as well, but to a different degree. For me, negative feelings or emotions, are a sign that I am resisting something and therefore out of alignment. I'm going through a break up right now and there are definitely a whole slew of negative feelings for sure. Certain thoughts bring on those negative feelings for me I've noticed. Are those thoughts true or not? Well, they're just thoughts :D

I like Byron Katie's method as you can only question your thoughts as to the validity of them and it's always an opportunity to spin around and look at yourself which is why I love relationships as painful as they can be sometimes.

I've noticed that a good portion of the thought processes that go on, in my own mind, stem from a lifetime of conditioning. So, most thoughts are ultimately just thoughts, yet true is of course, subjective. So, whether or not the thought is true or not, is a matter of what you define as 'true'. It's true that I am experiencing that thought right here and now, but is what the thought is pointing to, valid in our own experience? It depends I'd say. If a thought is making me feel anxious because it's telling me a lion is chasing me, I might not feel good, but it's still true.

The difference I see is whether I'm suffering or not stemming from a thought, which means, I'm making an enemy of the thought and believing myself to only be, that thought. A thought is just a thought and has no power in and of itself, until we identify and believe every thought to be true and then, cannot stand back and observe from a witness point of view. It's definitely tough sometimes.

There's no doubt that feelings are our greatest guides here in physicality. A negative feeling means, I want something to be different than it already is, while a positive feeling, is that I am aligned with Being. But, sometimes, you can trick yourself into feeling positive, by temporarily attaining something pleasureful that satisfies the ego and it might appear as though you are feeling happy. The test is, how do you feel when that something that attained is no longer there?
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Re: Feelings as a compass

Postby DavidB » Thu Jan 29, 2015 9:15 am

When you say "feeling", I assume you are referring to emotion?

Emotion comes from our primitive mind, the mind which still exists in us as our primal animal nature. From this perspective emotion can be seen as instinctive.

Emotion emerges as a result of external simuli or as a result of a thought. Emotion does not differentiate between these two, emerging as equally as a result of either, or both. Emotional responses are in a sense programmed in us as a collective species but also as a result of our environment, that is to say, that the emotion can be either a collective instinctive response from our primordial past as a species, but also as a result of what we have experienced growing up individually.

Negative emotion then is a value judgment. There are no negative emotions. All emotion informs us as to how we feel about something, and therefore are always equal and valuable. Emotion on it's own however, is not always a reliable indicator of how we ought to act. Once we become aware of emotion as it arises, we then need to filter that emotion though intelligence. ie. Is what I am feeling right now an appropriate response to the current life situation? If not, then why not?

I'm gald that you have discovered a resource to inform you of your current state of being.
“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: Feelings as a compass

Postby ashley72 » Sat Jan 31, 2015 4:52 pm

Usually thoughts that linger or feel unresolved more than usual (a runaway scenario) ....these kinds of thoughts are the ones which need to be suspended and examined more closely. The lingering or rumination of unwanted thoughts is a sign there is a positive feedback loop operating.... These positive feedback cycles abruptly stops the sufferer from following or being attentive or receptive to a situation.

Nearly anytime I have a unwanted thought about avoiding something, if there is an underlying irrational fear driving that anxious rumination... I know it's a symptomatic of positive feedback. The solution for me is to expose myself to what that thought might want me to avoid... and stay with the thing until the anxious thoughts stop arising.

My own recovery has been miraculous. I'm no longer perplexed by my cognitive behaviour and don't feel dysfunctional like I used to feel when the positive feedback was ruling my cognition.

I have gone from being reclusive and anti-social to engaging & friendly. I still have more improvements I'm working on, but I have a formula that works now & that increases my confidence.
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Re: Feelings as a compass

Postby Maringa » Sun Feb 01, 2015 9:52 pm

Enlightened2B wrote:

Thank you, very insightful

DavidB wrote:When you say "feeling", I assume you are referring to emotion?"
Well yes, I guess so. In my language we don't make a distinction between "feeling" and "emotion" it's the same word :)

ashley72 wrote:
amazing!

thank you for your answers, I really appreciate it!
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Re: Feelings as a compass

Postby Maringa » Sun Feb 01, 2015 10:54 pm

I suffer from severe anxiety, and whenever I have obsessions that makes me worried or sad I can now say to myself: "No, this is not true, because I feel bad" if I feel good about something I chose to think that it's probably true. Works for me :)
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Re: Feelings as a compass

Postby snowheight » Sun Feb 01, 2015 11:33 pm

Maringa wrote:I suffer from severe anxiety, and whenever I have obsessions that makes me worried or sad I can now say to myself: "No, this is not true, because I feel bad" if I feel good about something I chose to think that it's probably true. Works for me :)


Powerful stuff for sure :D , but not all negative image-based thoughts are necessarily harmful and there’s a dynamic between the positive and the negative where sometimes we can have too much of a good thing.

We can learn from constructive criticism if we’re open to it. Katie’s work can help you get the distance between your sense of yourself, on one hand, and where the criticism is directed, on the other hand, to allow that. My guess is that you might already be familiar with the notion of detachment, which is what this process is.

Ultimately, what you are – what every human being is -- isn’t something that can ever really be damaged by opinion.
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: Feelings as a compass

Postby Sam Hardy » Mon Feb 02, 2015 7:38 am

This is awesome Maringa. I have followed my manly feelings for a long time now and never had more success and happiness. I believe it is THE compass.

I also follow the gut with everything I do. I no longer have regret because in the every moment I do what is the best in that moment on a feeling level. The thoughts and "logic" interfere with the moment, whereas the feeling is the exact reflections of the on going moment. It seems that the universal consciousness and my subconscious always knows the best for me - not my mind.
Author of http://www.ZenDevil.com - Psychology Of Freedom. Exploring consciousness and eradicating shame so we can finally be ourselves.
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Re: Feelings as a compass

Postby Maringa » Mon Feb 02, 2015 10:41 pm

snowheight wrote:


I am not my thoughts, I don't have to believe this thought. If the thought is accompanied with a bad emotion (anxiety, fear, terror) I chose to reject it as false. Example of thought patters "what if I have a serious illness", "what if I will die before this and this age" "what if the plane will crash" (yes, this is generalized anxiety disorder :mrgreen: very disturbing indeed)

If I would really have a serious illness I aspect a deeper sense of knowing, not "what if, what if, what if *panic*"

Sam Hardy wrote:This is awesome Maringa. I have followed my manly feelings for a long time now and never had more success and happiness. I believe it is THE compass.

I also follow the gut with everything I do. I no longer have regret because in the every moment I do what is the best in that moment on a feeling level. The thoughts and "logic" interfere with the moment, whereas the feeling is the exact reflections of the on going moment. It seems that the universal consciousness and my subconscious always knows the best for me - not my mind.


Yes, wonderful!!! I totally agree with this, it's my exact observation put in better words! :D :D :D
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Re: Feelings as a compass

Postby snowheight » Tue Feb 03, 2015 5:17 pm

Maringa wrote:
snowheight wrote:


I am not my thoughts, I don't have to believe this thought. If the thought is accompanied with a bad emotion (anxiety, fear, terror) I chose to reject it as false. Example of thought patters "what if I have a serious illness", "what if I will die before this and this age" "what if the plane will crash" (yes, this is generalized anxiety disorder :mrgreen: very disturbing indeed)

If I would really have a serious illness I aspect a deeper sense of knowing, not "what if, what if, what if *panic*"


Great wisdom expressed there for a certainty.

Practicing detachment reveals it's limits and in that limit, really, it's ok to feel bad sometimes. What is beautiful is so because it is ephemeral and impermanent. Just as there's a difference between the mind-made suffering of grief, and the natural sadness of poignancy, there is a distinction between unnecessary image-based mind-made hyper criticism on one hand, and standing up and not retreating in the face of an unpleasant "reality" on the other.

The body does seem to know better than the mind, but ultimately, even feeling has it's limits as a compass as to what it is that you truly are.
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: Feelings as a compass

Postby DavidB » Sat Feb 07, 2015 1:57 am

I suffer from severe anxiety, and whenever I have obsessions that makes me worried or sad I can now say to myself: "No, this is not true, because I feel bad" if I feel good about something I chose to think that it's probably true. Works for me :)


I used to suffer from severe anxiety too, as well as panic attacks. I hope you can overcome your anxiety. I overcame severe anxiety and I'm nobody special, so I'm pretty sure you can too. :D

If the thought is accompanied with a bad emotion (anxiety, fear, terror) I chose to reject it as false


Indeed, that is what I do/did. Whenever I get those feelings, I simply notice them and then choose to not dwell on them nor follow their momentum. Usually those feelings will subside fairly quickly without much effort, although I rarely get those feelings anymore anyway. I might just add though, that acceptance is far more effective in this regard than rejection. Choose to accept that the feelings are false, rather than reject them as false.
“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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