How come some unconcious people can be happy?

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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby azooo » Fri Aug 09, 2013 11:57 am

For the "common person" it is not a question of being "happy" but of being able to deny and suppress your thoughts and emotions efficiently.

Being identified with an ego implies you're going to die and everyone in this state is holding this fact buried deep inside their subconscious mind. Hence there has to be unhappiness and fear. But the whole ego structure relies on your denial of it. That is why many persons, in order to keep this thought from awareness lose themselves in the world.

All that such a person is trying to achieve is to desperately try and save himself from death (believing this will come from money, power , success). Looking at it from this perspective it is easy to see that this is not real happiness.
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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby Questioning_Truth » Sat Aug 10, 2013 8:35 am

On the subject of happiness in relation to being 'unconscious', I do believe that many people are not truly happy in this state but are at least occupied with the pursuit of happiness (in the material world). Their striving for more provides their life with purpose and the hope of finding it one day, leaving them free of the angst that can come from existential questioning. Of course, moments of happiness occur but can never last because of the impermanent nature of the world. They however do not see the futility of it and therefore can remain occupied and distracted by it. On the other hand, perhaps somebody like you are I cannot help but see the futility. I have always had the feeling that I could get a very successful normal life if I wanted to but it would feel meaningless, wouldn't make me happy, it would feel false, like I was pretending. I feel I had no option but to search for a deeper level of meaning, and in this state, happiness was not actually the goal, truth was. Ironically, when you stop striving for happiness and rather simply seek authenticity and truth, happiness is likely to occur as a result!
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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby blissrunn14 » Mon Oct 06, 2014 5:03 am

You don't know what they feel inside most of them probably aren't as happy as they look like on the outside to you.

They also may be using a lot of things to mask and cover up their pain and suffering...so if they feel numb to it now when those things fall away they will feel it. As I've heard mentioned around here it seems to me that some people have much smaller pain bodies then others so they can more successfully muster up some degree of shallow happiness for themselves. I unfortunately have not been so fortunate ha.

Some of them may actually be happy to a degree anyway and may not be as unconscious as you think they are.
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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby beginnersmind » Sat Oct 11, 2014 2:09 pm

Heisenberg wrote:In my environment I know there are a lot of people who are not into spirituality or presence at all. They are pretty much just taken up by their minds, life and social life. But they seem just happy. Very egoic as in, looking for social approval, playing the game, seeing flaws in others, gossipping, but happy.
Just as I was before I got into presence. However I was deeply unhappy and depressed.

Thinking about this, how can these people identified with ego be so succesful and happy, for a while strongly made me egoic and doubtful about the teachings. I felt like presence and awareness that Tolle talks about is rubbish because all these other people seem to be doing fine without it. I started comparing and thinking there is something wrong with me. Mind you this was a few months after I got into Tolle. Maybe I didn't fully grasp the teaching yet.

Still the question somewhat remains: Is it that these people have more ability to tap into presence unknowingly? Do they have less resistance levels or a smaller pain body, thus they can be happier?

Thank you.


On a superficial level, this may seem to be the case and in my own work environment this also appears to be for many people. But I've had quite a few co workers open up to me (for some reason) and I can tell you from my experience, it is pretty much a facade. Many people live what Thoreau called, a life of quiet desperation.

Some of the "secrets" some of my co workers have told me, have stunned me. A co worker who seems quite happy at my work (a real happy go lucky guy that seems to get along with just about everyone) told me that he has anxiety attacks and drinks everyday to escape them. Another person who seems to have his life together confessed to me that his home life is horrible (which probably explains why he spends so much time at work).

Gossiping and pointing out other people's flaws in not being happy. It is the attempt to get rid of one's own insecurities by projecting these insecurities onto others in the hope to put the focus on the other person in hopes that the person who is gossiping won't get "found out." It may temporarily make the person feel better by appearing to build themselves up by tearing another down, but the person will continually have to do this, because the feelings and thoughts of their own insecurities will keep coming back to them. The more a person gossips, the more insecure they probably are. After all, it makes no sense that a truly happy person would need to tear down another person to remain happy.

There is a guy at my work who talks behind everyone's back. In fact, when I was first hired there, people told me to not pay him much mind and his nick-name is the "rumor mill". I can also say at a quick glance, he appears to be relatively happy, but as I said, people seem to be ok in divulging their private lives to me. Underneath the mask of happiness, this guy is not happy either and I can see it play out at work through some of his actions and statements.

On the flip side, there are others at my work who also appear to be happy. Yet these people tend not to gossip or participate in it. While a gossip may come to them with gossip, I have experienced some of these people not engage in it and shrug off the gossip with statements like, "Well it's not like I haven't done something dumb before" or " Yeah well...." and just let that statement trail off to disengage the conversation. These are the people I look to, because they are not trying to find happiness within another's fault.

We are all conscious and unconscious to a certain extent and just because someone doesn't read Eckhart Tolle means they are necessarily unconscious or if they do read Tolle, it doesn't mean they are necessarily becoming more conscious.
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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby viking55803 » Sun Oct 12, 2014 2:03 pm

I like this question but it seems to be based on a false premise: consciousness (or presence) is somehow related to happiness. Happiness is a feeling, no?

It seems like this feeling manifests on a continuum from mere contentment to its most powerful manifestation: joy. Eckhart points out that feelings and emotions are forms just like thoughts and material objects, and just like all forms, transient, temporary, impermanent. Positive feelings, negative feelings - all just feelings. We are mental/emotional creatures, with exactly the same "emotional brain" as all other mammals and most animals. It is a far older (in evolutionary terms) part of the brain which preceded the emergence of the "thinking" brain.

Dogs appear to be among the happiest of creatures, and since they are more or less free of thought, quite in the present moment. But it isn't presence that MAKES them happy; it's dinner, treats, and walks! Most of the time they appear to be just bored or content (at least untroubled by worrying or brooding with a head full of thoughts!) If I could be like a dog, every time I saw a plate of food I would weep with joy. That joy would be magnified by starvation. By the way, that may be the reason for the spiritual practice of giving thanks or saying "grace" before eating - food is a source of happiness for humans too.

Presence may make us more aware of the little joys of everyday life, but equally aware of the pain and sadness in the world and ourselves and certainly no guarantee of happiness. Seeking happiness is an ego-driven agenda - in fact, in my experience it is the number one tool of the ego to take control: promising happiness if you would just do this, or do that, or get this or get that, or accomplish this or that, etc.

A second concern for me is who am I to say whether or not someone else is conscious? How conscious or present must someone be to deserve that label: 10%, 50%, 80%? The Buddha said we should treat all beings with equal compassion even though some suffer too much and some too little.
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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby ashley72 » Sun Oct 12, 2014 11:12 pm

viking55803 wrote:I like this question but it seems to be based on a false premise: consciousness (or presence) is somehow related to happiness.


I got interested in PON because I was suffering/unhappy from anxiety, panic & OCD disorders. But recovering from all these kinds of cognitive disorders had nothing to do with PON. I recovered from these cognitive disorders because I finally worked out that these cognitive disorders were being caused by a cognitive phenomenon called positive feedback.

Positive feedback is a natural condition that can arise in all systems that rely on feedback. Brain cognition relies on feedback so positive feedback can and will arise naturally in 20-30% of the human population statistically.

How do the conditions for cognitive positive feedback arise? In the case of anxiety, panic & obsessive compulsive disorders... It occurs when we get tricked into treating something unwanted or unpleasant as dangerous when it's not....we then get tricked into also treating the symptoms of danger, sweaty palms, heart rate increase, butterflies in the stomach as also dangerous. This can lead to avoidance behaviors as a way of coping with spiraling fear cycle.

Unfortunately I was one of the 20-30% of the population that suffered for almost 5 years of my life because there was a complete lack of knowledge about positive feedback causing cognitive disorders.

I overcame a positive feedback disorder by recognizing that the "fear of fear" (positive feedback) causes an increase in the fear signal. We call a feedback mechanism positive if the resulting action goes in the same direction as the condition that triggers it. Positive feedback loops can go into two directions: they can be either "exploding" or "imploding". In my case it was exploding into full blown panic attacks..This was the case when fear creates more fear in the absence of any rational danger.

I started to expose myself to things I was treating as dangerous and stopped treating the symptoms of danger as danger.

I've now fully recoveredd from the anxiety & panic disorders that had been limiting normal life experiences.

I'm now much more happy & my life is more fulfilling as a consequence!

Do you believe thinking, goal-setting , motivation, judgment are negative qualities that could lead to unhappiness? I don't believe so.

What leads to unhappiness is avoidance behaviours and social recluse... that are result of cognitive dysfunction like positive feedback disorders.
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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby Webwanderer » Sun Oct 12, 2014 11:53 pm

viking55803 wrote:Eckhart points out that feelings and emotions are forms just like thoughts and material objects, and just like all forms, transient, temporary, impermanent. Positive feelings, negative feelings - all just feelings.

Feelings and emotions are not the same as thoughts and material objects. Yes, they are temporary like material objects, but they serve a different, more valuable purpose to the human experience, and are discounted at one's own peril. Emotions reflect the quality of one's thoughts. Feeling, in its more useful definition, is perception. Among other qualities of feel, one 'feels' emotions. That said, feeling is an exploratory mechanism that in many ways is superior to thought in discerning one's life experience.

WW
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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby ashley72 » Tue Oct 14, 2014 5:43 pm

What is generally overlooked in "spiritual" discussions about happiness... is that humans are basically neurochemical machines.

What does that mean?

When humans set goals and achieve their goals, neurotransmitters called dopamine fire electrochemicals that make humans feel pleasurable (warm fuzzy feeling). If you want to get a hit of dopamine, set a goal and achieve it.

Therefore if so called "unconscious" people are self-centered and set a personal goal, and in turn, are fortunate enough to achieve their goal, they will be rewarded by having a good hit of dopamine momentarily! That's how our neurochemical machinery works. You don't feel constantly pleasurable, it's a short term reward cycle.
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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby Clouded » Wed Oct 15, 2014 9:28 pm

^and that's how people develop video game addictions. They provide an easy way to feel like you accomplished something and you get awarded with pixels which only leaves you wanting more.
"If you want to know what your were like in the past, look at your body today. If you want to know what your body will be like in the future, look at your thoughts today." -Deepak
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Re: How come some unconcious people can be happy?

Postby viking55803 » Thu Oct 16, 2014 1:16 am

Webwanderer wrote:
viking55803 wrote:Eckhart points out that feelings and emotions are forms just like thoughts and material objects, and just like all forms, transient, temporary, impermanent. Positive feelings, negative feelings - all just feelings.

Feelings and emotions are not the same as thoughts and material objects. Yes, they are temporary like material objects, but they serve a different, more valuable purpose to the human experience, and are discounted at one's own peril. Emotions reflect the quality of one's thoughts. Feeling, in its more useful definition, is perception. Among other qualities of feel, one 'feels' emotions. That said, feeling is an exploratory mechanism that in many ways is superior to thought in discerning one's life experience.

WW


In psychology, the word "feeling" is reserved for the subjective conscious awareness of emotions. I too think that is too narrow a definition. Jung's model describes thinking and feeling as opposites but both "rational" functions - that is they both form judgements - does this feel good or bad etc. Sensing and intuition are the other two dimensions. In my own experience, feelings are notoriously unreliable because they often arise from our mental-emotional complexes - our pain bodies as ET would say. On the other hand, I find intuition to be very helpful. You might guess that my dominant psychic functions are thinking and intuition so naturally I would favor those dimensions.
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