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A little help please

Posted: Tue Apr 04, 2017 10:26 am
by hungzai
Hi, this is my first time posting here. I understand that by virtue of me asking for a bit of help, that I have fallen back into somewhat unconcious mind patterns. I understand this and accept that it has happened, and really do not know what I am asking help for. I will just type and see where this goes. Afterall, sometimes typing alone helps me.

There was a time some years ago when I was so dominated by my mind that I would literally be going about my daily tasks asleep in my daydreams/"daymares", like the crazy homeless person on the street. The only difference being that I was born in a good family, had a good education and thus financially, I never became homeless. But the level of being "lost in my mind" was similar. Throughout this time, "I" (the mind identified self" was of course deeply depressed. Even then, before I had come into contact of any spiritual teachings, during my brief moments of awareness, I recognized this continous mind stream as somehow separate from myself. That it was somehow a "rattattattat" going on in my head, that wasn't me. A very traumatic event then occured and set me off on a path of intense suffering, even more than before. I had undergone traditional treatment of anti-depressants and therapy for about 3 years, to no avail. In fact, it had left me worse off, and during the time on medication I had behaved in ways where I essentially dug myself into a hole in my life situation. A hole which today I am still in the process of getting out of. When I think about this life situation, I feel so overwhelmed like I don't know when I can ever get out, and this energy seems to help it persist.

At some point I dug up two books I had bought years ago by Eckhart Tolle but had not read, and they have helped me greatly. Early on in my spiritual path, I realized that if I was concious, I could stop my thinking. I had this thing where I had to continually run the plans for the next day, next hour etc. over and over in my head thousands of times. For example, if I had a meeting or event or even daily tasks like housework tommorow, I would be watching a movie tonight, and have to pause the movie constantly to think "tommorow I will do: step 1, step 2, step 3" etc., again and again over the same steps, like 50 times per movie. Same if I was just resting or eating. One day, I decided to try to just stop in the middle of one of these episodes. Without "solving" any of the future problems, I just STOPPED. I was like "Whoa!". Emptiness! It was like heaven. So pleasureable and peaceful that I could not bear it almost even though it probably lasted only a few seconds probably. In times after this, the feeling was less intense, but I realized that during moments of conciousness, I was able to stop thinking, that the compulsive repetitive thinking was just PRETENDING to be necessary, when it really wasn't.

After this, for a couple of years, I read through what Eckhart wrote, practiced presence with inner body awareness, watching my thoughts etc. (I must say, I was rather lazy in doing these things, mostly read more and more using mind), as well as listened to some of his talks, and about several months ago I recognized conceptually the workings of the ego, its patterns and so on. While I have not been able to find any real separation of my ego from my true self, I have realized that I have taken things less personally. When people are rude, I do not get upset for nearly as long (a few seconds or minutes now vs. for years or even decades before), and I no longer have the need to constantly try to prove myself, and my insecurities reduced. I am still in a rather unpleasant life situation and yes I do still try to make the present moment a means to an end, to get out of it. This I know and admit.

About a month ago, I had an experience where I listened to his audiobook as I did housework for some hours, then slept. When I awoke, I felt peaceful. The thoughts in my head greatly reduced. My life situation was the same, but I did not feel the same intense suffering. The pain was still there, but there was a gap between it and "myself", even though I could still not clearly feel my true self. There was no real revelation, and I did not seek to understand it. It lasted for about 24 hours and there was a gradual slipping back into my previous state. I still feel thankful for this because it gave me a taste of what being free of mind identification meant.

Last week, I was in such deep suffering that I could not bear to be awake. I just stayed in bed. I wanted to just "go away", whatever that meant. My life situation is such that there are those who are dependent on me for care, so suicide, although tempting, was out of the question. I wanted to jump to a different dimension, a parallel universe, where everything was ok. I looked this up and the methods to do so on reddit, and wanted to make sure that I would not be leaving loved ones behind (old dimension ones still sick, replaced by new dimesion ones etc.), banishing "another me" to this hell etc., and researched deeply. I found out that dimensional jumping on that subreddit wasn't about "dimensions" at all. Basically, it served as a metaphor to me, that each "Now" moment was a different dimension, and we pick and choose what we can experience as we go one to the next. Our brain just interprets it as a continous linear path, but it was really individual dimensions/moments. Before, I had heard Eckhart talk about always being in the now, that the past and future were not real because in the past I was in the now, and when future is here it will be now. I understood it but didn't "get it", as the word "Now" still made me think in terms of time. When I replaced each "now" with each "dimension", all of a sudden, I "got it". I understood it and was free of time, free of past and future, I was in the "Now". All of a sudden, everything seemed possible. I felt free and peaceful. Throughout the next 48 hours or so, I felt at peace. Brief glimpses of my old modus operandi flahed by and I could feel the discord and how disharmonic my whole life had been and felt such contrast to what I felt at the time. I had no idea how I lived before in such a state for so long. I felt very peaceful.

Suddenly, my mind hooked onto something. Of all the things like my loved ones being sick and this and that, I suddenly remember I had problems with my home's air conditioning, and there were many problems fixing it. I felt like my mind just hooked on it, and within 1 or 2 seconds, dragged me down into a sort of vortex. I literally felt like I spiralled down into like a hole or something and back to the old state. I couldn't stop thinking about it. That was yesterday. Today, I wake up and I can feel the depression and anger in me, although I am making effort to stay as present as I can and just watch the depression instead of engage it with thought. I really should retrace my steps that got me in that state at first but feel just too bummed out to do it. I know it was just a simple shift in perspective from being in time vs. only one moment, but feel so bummed that I will do it "later". See what I mean?

Well, I understand and accept that most spiritual awakenings are gradual unlike Eckhart's, he even says so himself. I guess I am just sharing because I don't know what "help" to ask for, just felt a bit helpless and typed. I do feel better now. I honestly am thankful that I am on this "journey" along my percieved timeline so to speak on my spiritual awakening. Thank you for reading and would love to hear what you say.

Re: A little help please

Posted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 8:31 am
by steve Davidson
Hi Hungzai,

This is my first post too. I am new here and enjoyed reading your sharing. It sounds like you are doing good work on yourself and Tolle's books are helping you. I see nothing wrong with asking for help or sharing your story, in fact, I think it is very good. Please do not think you fell back into unconsciousness because you are writing and sharing. As you said, typing alone and sharing does help. Glad you found this forum and glad you shared what is going on with you. I hope others with more experience in regards to Tolles teachings, can share something helpful, but just wanted to say I read this and listened to it with great interest and respect for you.

Re: A little help please

Posted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 7:52 pm
by steve Davidson
Hi Hungzai,

How are you doing since you posted this thread? Was typing this helpful to you? How is the practice going? If you want to share, of course, and if not, I hope all is going well with you.