NoordZee wrote:Once a negative thought 'hits' me, it is almost impossible for me to get rid of this thought.
As kiki said:
kiki wrote:It's the resistance to thoughts, the desire to get rid of them, or to cling to them that will keep them in place. So when thoughts are there watch them too - that gives them the space to have their existence and then fade away on their own.
I would go even further and suggest that rather than just passively watching "negative" thoughts, you positively welcome
It may sound like mad advice, but it's actually a tried and tested technique that recurs in the esoteric teachings of many traditions.
The great Sufi poet and mystic, Rumi, has this poem, for example, in which he compares the mind to a guest-house and advises the owner to cordially welcome whoever may turn up:
Rumi - Guest House
A human being is a guest house
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
I made the last passage bold because it echoes what I said the other day in another post here (if I can be forgive for quoting myself
And remember that these fearful thoughts are not your enemies.
They're just energy-forms that you yourself created in the past obeying the laws of their own nature.
I once thought them a curse.
Now I know that they can be a great blessing.
They forced me to wake up and find a way beyond suffering to a peace that I never imagined was possible for me.
They also made sure I stayed conscious and didn't get complacent.
Because they return again and again - often when you're least expecting them.
But that, as I said, is ultimately a blessing because as ET says, it's often those who suffer the most pain who dissolve their pain-body the fastest.
Now, the very thought-complexes that used to terrify me on a regular basis have almost no power left at all. I see them coming a mile off and laugh to myself. Then they vanish again, mere shadows of the terrible demons that they once were, or seemed to me.
Acquiring this skill is the most worthwhile thing I've ever done.
I believe that you'll feel the same when you begin to experience successs, as I'm sure you will.
For a Buddhist perspective on the same matter, the autobiography of the eleventh century Tibetan mystic, Milarepa deals with the problem in even more concrete terms.
While Milarepa dwelt in the Eagle Tower caves of Red Rock Jewel Valley, he went out one day to gather firewood. Eventually he returned to his cave, and found it invaded by five horrific demons with eyes as large as saucers.
Shocked, Milarepa politely introduced himself and asked them to leave. At this, the demons became menacing, surrounding him while growling, grimacing, and laughing maliciously. Milarepa was alarmed and attempted the most powerful of exorcism recitations, to no avail. The demons became even more threatening.
Next, the yogin tried with great compassion to pacify them with Buddhist teachings, but they still remained, more vivid and horrible than before.
Finally Milarepa realized that his approach was mistaken, and that he needed the most direct means possible. Supplicating his teacher Marpa, he acknowledged that the demons, and all phenomena for that matter, were of his own mind, which is of the nature of luminosity and emptiness.
The demons were his own projections, and seeing them naively as external demons served as an obstacle to his practice. At the same time, their malicious nature was actually radiant and transparent, no different from awakening itself.
If he could respond to them appropriately, he could reap great spiritual benefit.
Milarepa then applied his guru's instructions and sang one of his famous dohas, or songs of realization. In it he proclaimed his lineage of wakefulness and the mastery of his own mind...
Having proclaimed the fearlessness which he had discovered in his practice, Milarepa followed the training given him by his guru. He invited the demons to stay with him and to receive his hospitality.
Milarepa declares: "Ye ghosts and demons, enemies of the Dharma, I welcome you today! It is my pleasure to receive you! I pray you, stay; do not hasten to leave...".
He invites the demons to bring their friends along as well!
Needless to say, as soon as he makes this offer, the demons vanish.
To continue their existence the demons need Milarepa to feed them with his fear, not extend the hand of friendship.
The full excerpt can be read @:
together with a very intelligent and useful Jungian-based commentary on the techniques used by Milarepa to come to terms with these "demons" (which were really no more than the creations of his own mind, that is, thoughts).
This great truth is also embodied in many fairytales.
As soon as the object of fear/disgust is faced and accepted it vanishes or transforms into something beautiful ("At the same time, their malicious nature was actually radiant and transparent", as Milarepa wrote).
The frog, when kissed, becomes a handsome prince. The monster when faced becomes an ally and protector.
The pain-body, when welcomed and embraced, becomes a source of great joy and blessing as it liberates massive amounts of trapped life-energy that lead to a powerful and intense experience of being and presence.
Doing this will utterly transform your life.