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SB_UK
10-11-13, 04:35 PM
http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=3490&Itemid=0&limit=1&limitstart=0
Thich Nhat Hanh on The Practice of MindfulnessMost people are forgetful; they are not really there a lot of he time.

Haven't been able to find an explanation of meditation/mindfulness which resonates.

The chap referenced above appears to be considered highly.

My problem - I do the exact opposite of what he's describing.

So - I try and auto-pilot everything - because my mind is happy in auto-pilot.

So - mind in auto-pilot is like driving the car on an empty road. [relaxed]

Mind which is present - is like driving the car in a very slow moving traffic jam [irritating,road rage].

I'm trying to suggest that my mind is trying not to be mindful of what's actually happening - and that when it is mindful eg in a traffic jam where it's constantly operating - it's really unhappy.

So - there's something very wrong here - I'm advocating the exact opposite of the Buddhist expert above - and he's gotta' be right being an expert - but I just don't see how.

I like to dissociate/daydream/transcend - I like to overcome mind
- I kinda' think that when we bypass mind - we become in the present

- but I personally - have no recollection of what happens in the present - it's as though being in the present bypasses memory
- which I can explain 'd make sense.

Memory kinda' drags us into living in the past or future ... ... ...

Anyway something very wrong here.

SB_UK
10-11-13, 04:38 PM
- but i personally - have no recollection of what happens in the present - it's as though being in the present bypasses memory

==
most people are forgetful; they are not really there a lot of he time.
..... these are fundamentally incompatible ......

dvdnvwls
10-11-13, 05:25 PM
(being charitable toward thich nhat hanh's point of view): Could he be talking about having two different ways of perceiving time, or perhaps be using a non-standard meaning of "forgetful"?

SB_UK
10-12-13, 04:32 AM
(being charitable toward thich nhat hanh's point of view): Could he be talking about having two different ways of perceiving time, or perhaps be using a non-standard meaning of "forgetful"?

I don't know - he's almost perfectly describing the state I am repelled from being in - though also the state that one needs to be in, in order to survive in this world.

You see - I just don't care about what's going on in the present - it's not as though 'present' means anything - we're just on some arbitrary clock which began at the Big Bang - and which is measured in units which scale from Planck time ... ... who cares what's going on now ?

All I can see is a forever changing now - where what has just happened will not occur again

- and where the point in life is to be happy.

Where all that stops us being happy - are the habits of man.

sarek
10-12-13, 06:03 AM
"man is asleep" is a key tenet of all forms of self awareness and minfulness methods.

The big problem is that almost everyone already thinks that they are awake. But we are not. Our very thoughts are the results of biological processes, we do not actively 'will' them. As we are, we have no unitary will.

Self awareness is the first stage we need to achieve to give our own will back to us. It helps us break out of the mechanicalness of everyday functioning.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 09:58 AM
"man is asleep" is a key tenet of all forms of self awareness and minfulness methods.

The big problem is that almost everyone already thinks that they are awake. But we are not. Our very thoughts are the results of biological processes, we do not actively 'will' them. As we are, we have no unitary will.

Self awareness is the first stage we need to achieve to give our own will back to us. It helps us break out of the mechanicalness of everyday functioning.

I agree - but i attribute 'man is asleep' to material world attachment.
And free will to freedom from material world attachment.

Material world attachment = love/desire of money.

Freedom from material world attachment = the incapacity to motivate towards earning money especially when what one has to do is wrong - which most (all?) things involving money are.

So sure it might seem good to eg service cars for a living - because otherwise people will die in car accidents from failing parts
- but my general stance is that it's not wise to have a car in the first place and so from that higher perspective -
servicing cars becomes immoral.

Continue the logic and nothing people do for money stands - meaning ... ...
Freedom from material world attachment = the incapacity to motivate towards earning money especially when what one has to do is wrong - which most (all?) things involving money are.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 10:02 AM
Nice and simple

When asleep have love/desire of money.
When awake - lose reward system which is activated by money - therefore cannot comply - definitely cannot 'enjoy' money.

However - begrudgingly required to use money to buy food/shelter whilst taking no 'pleasure' in the process
- it's simply a mechanical requirement.

No 'ooo' of pleasure comes out of money when buying basal food/shelter provision - and it's the 'ooo' ie spending money on frivolities which make an individual feel good - which = love/desire of money or = material world attachment.


So no 'ooo' when spending money.
Automatic resistance to spending money.

And you're there - a process arrived at by simply becoming wise and shifting to the social reward system.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 10:09 AM
Self awareness

=

"In that position of self-realization, by practice of knowledge and renunciation in devotional service, one sees everything in the right perspective; he becomes indifferent to material existence, and the material influence acts less powerfully upon him."

Living for the material world is lost upon self-awareness.

What is material world atttachment ?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNSUOFgj97M

SB_UK
10-12-13, 10:11 AM
If you're a materialist you're really not going to 'buy a stairway' to Heaven.

Needs to be earned by internal change.

Can't be bought.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 10:20 AM
(being charitable toward thich nhat hanh's point of view): Could he be talking about having two different ways of perceiving time, or perhaps be using a non-standard meaning of "forgetful"?
If he means forgetful as inconsistent - I agree ?
eg you hear people talk about 'lest we forget' (the pointlessness of war) and then about the need for war in the same sentence
- these ideas aren't consistent and could ?? be considered 'forgetful' on the part of the speaker.

Also - different ways of perceiving time ?
I have no perception of time - and so can see that time perception 'd be involved

- both of your interpretations can be made to work

- but if somebody says something that requires such interpretation
- it's incumbent on the individual to go the extra distance and to explain their words in a manner which others can understand.

So - use few words.
If we need to use more words - ensure that there's little room for misinterpretation.

ginniebean
10-12-13, 11:18 AM
Awareness: The Key to
Living in Balance

by Osho


From the Book's Foreward :

One of the most important things to be understood about man is that man is asleep. Even while he thinks he is awake, he is not. His wakefulness is very fragile; his wakefulness is so tiny it doesn’t matter at all. His wakefulness is only a beautiful name but utterly empty.


You sleep in the night, you sleep in the day - from birth to death you go on changing your patterns of sleep, but you never really awaken. Just by opening the eyes don’t befool yourself that you are awake. Unless the inner eyes open - unless your inside becomes full of light, unless you can see yourself, who you are - don’t think that you are awake. That is the greatest illusion man lives in. And once you accept that you are already awake, then there is no question of making any effort to be awake.


The first thing to sink deep in your heart is that you are asleep, utterly asleep. You are dreaming, day in, day out. You are dreaming sometimes with open eyes and sometimes with closed eyes, but you are dreaming - you are a dream. You are not yet a reality.


Of course in a dream whatsoever you do is meaningless. Whatsoever you think is pointless, whatsoever you project remains part of your dreams and never allows you to see that which is. Hence all the buddhas have insisted on only one thing: Awaken! Continuously, for centuries, their whole teaching can be contained in a single phrase: Be awake. And they have been devising methods, strategies; they have been creating contexts and spaces and energy fields in which you can be shocked into awareness.


Yes, unless you are shocked, shaken to your very foundations, you will not awaken. The sleep has been so long that it has reached to the very core of your being; you are soaked in it. Each cell of your body and each fiber of your mind have become full of sleep. It is not a small phenomenon. Hence great effort is needed to be alert, to be attentive, to be watchful, to become a witness. If all the buddhas of the world agree on any one single theme, this is it - that man as he is, is asleep, and man as he should be, should be awake. Wakefulness is the goal and wakefulness is the taste of all their teachings. Zarathustra, Lao Tzu, Jesus, Buddha, Bahauddin, Kabir, Nanak - all the awakened ones have been teaching one single theme… in different languages, in different metaphors, but their song is the same. Just as the sea tastes of salt - whether the sea is tasted from the north or from the east or from the west, the sea always tastes of salt - the taste of buddhahood is wakefulness.


But you will not make any effort if you go on believing that you are already awake. Then there is no question of making any effort - why bother?


And you have created religions, gods, prayers, rituals, out of your dreams - your gods are as much part of your dreams as anything else. Your politics is part of your dreams, your religions are part of your dreams, your poetry, your painting, your art - whatsoever you do, because you are asleep, you do things according to your own state of mind.


Your gods cannot be different from you. Who will create them? Who will give them shape and color and form? You create them, you sculpt them; they have eyes like you, noses like you - and minds like you! The Old Testament God says, "I am a very jealous God!" Now who has created this God who is jealous? God cannot be jealous, and if God is jealous then what is wrong in being jealous? If even God is jealous, why should you be thought to be doing something wrong when you are jealous? Jealousy is divine!


The Old Testament God says, "I am a very angry God! If you don’t follow my commandments, I will destroy you. You will be thrown into hellfire for eternity. And because I am very jealous," God says, "don’t worship anybody else. I cannot tolerate it." Who created such a God? It must be out of our own jealousy, out of our own anger, that you have created this image. It is your projection, it is your shadow. It echoes you and nobody else. And the same is the case with all gods of all religions.


It is because of this that Buddha never talked about God. He said, "What is the point of talking about God to people who are asleep? They will listen in their sleep. They will dream about whatsoever is said to them, and they will create their own gods - which will be utterly false, utterly impotent, utterly meaningless. It is better not to have such gods."


That’s why Buddha is not interested in talking about gods. His whole interest is in waking you up.


It is said about a Buddhist enlightened master who was sitting by the side of the river one evening, enjoying the sound of the water, the sound of the wind passing through the trees.... A man came and asked him, "Can you tell me in a single word the essence of your religion?"


The master remained silent, utterly silent, as if he had not heard the question. The questioner said, "Are you deaf or something?"


The master said, "I have heard your question, and I have answered it too! Silence is the answer. I remained silent - that pause, that interval, was my answer."


The man said, "I cannot understand such a mysterious answer. Can’t you be a little more clear?"


So the master wrote on the sand "meditation," in small letters with his finger. The man said, "I can read now. It is a little better than at first. At least I have got a word to ponder over. But can’t you make it a little more clear?" The master wrote again, "MEDITATION." Of course this time he wrote in bigger letters. The man was feeling a little embarrassed, puzzled, offended, angry. He said, "Again you write meditation? Can’t you be a little clear for me?"


And the master wrote in very big letters, capital letters,
"M E D I T A T I O N."


The man said, "You seem to be mad!"


The master said, "I have already come down very much. The first answer was the right answer, the second was not so right, the third even more wrong, the fourth has gone very wrong" - because when you write "MEDITATION" with capital letters you have made a god out of it.


That’s why the word God is written with capital ’G’. Whenever you want to make something supreme, ultimate, you write it with a capital letter. The master said, "I have already committed a sin." He erased all those words he had written and he said, "Please listen to my first answer - only then I am true."


Silence is the space in which one awakens, and the noisy mind is the space in which one remains asleep. If your mind continues chattering, you are asleep. Sitting silently, if the mind disappears and you can hear the chattering birds and no mind inside, a silence...this whistle of the bird, the chirping, and no mind functioning in your head, utter silence...then awareness wells up in you. It does not come from the outside, it arises in you, it grows in you. Otherwise remember: you are asleep.

dvdnvwls
10-12-13, 11:56 AM
I don't know - he's almost perfectly describing the state I am repelled from being in - though also the state that one needs to be in, in order to survive in this world.

You see - I just don't care about what's going on in the present - it's not as though 'present' means anything - we're just on some arbitrary clock which began at the Big Bang - and which is measured in units which scale from Planck time ... ... who cares what's going on now ?

All I can see is a forever changing now - where what has just happened will not occur again

- and where the point in life is to be happy.

Where all that stops us being happy - are the habits of man.
This may be too big, too general, and too leading of a question - but do you think it's possible that your philosophy for changing the world, as expressed in a number of different ways, is at its heart "We must give everyone in the world the ADHD mind-set"? I'll say I think it doesn't not fit.

sarek
10-12-13, 12:00 PM
1. We can not change the world unless we can change ourselves
2. We can not change ourselves until we figure out how to get out of the state of being asleep.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 03:11 PM
Sitting silently, if the mind disappears and you can hear the chattering birds and no mind inside, a silence...this whistle of the bird, the chirping, and no mind functioning in your head, utter silence...then awareness wells up in you.

Sitting silently, if the mind disappears and you can hear the chattering birds and no mind inside, a silence...this whistle of the bird, the chirping, and no mind functioning in your head, utter silence...then awareness wells up in you.

Sitting silently, if the mind disappears and you can hear the chattering birds and no mind inside, a silence...this whistle of the bird, the chirping, and no mind functioning in your head, utter silence...then awareness wells up in you.

Sitting silently, if the mind disappears and you can hear the chattering birds and no mind inside, a silence...this whistle of the bird, the chirping, and no mind functioning in your head, utter silence...then awareness wells up in you.

Sitting silently, if the mind disappears and you can hear the chattering birds and no mind inside, a silence...this whistle of the bird, the chirping, and no mind functioning in your head, utter silence...then awareness wells up in you.


You can kill the mind off by completing it

- the mind then has no further questions.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 03:15 PM
This may be too big, too general, and too leading of a question - but do you think it's possible that your philosophy for changing the world, as expressed in a number of different ways, is at its heart "We must give everyone in the world the ADHD mind-set"? I'll say I think it doesn't not fit.

Great question.

If ADHD is tendency to global logical consistency - then having people either attain global logical consistency or be consistent with it on the way to attaining global logical consistency - 'd be a method of ensuring a nice, happy world.

There're 2 competing reward systems.

Selfish (material) versus Social.
Seen in animals PFC reward system vs ACC reward system.

We need people to use social - and then at wisdom (global logical consistency) - people escape the threat of falling into the selfish reward system.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 03:20 PM
1. We can not change the world unless we can change ourselves
2. We can not change ourselves until we figure out how to get out of the state of being asleep.

Definitely personal change - but my point is that societal infrastructure (selecting for Gollum Ferengis) gets in the way.
But definitely personal change.

We don't really need to figure out how to awaken
- given a proper societal infrastructure and education - and a little effort thinking about things - we'll awaken without needing to worry about how to awaken.

It's kinda' difficult to try and awaken - I'd suggest we just try and work out our context and then to awaken when the time comes.

You'll be able to assess whether you're awake by your relationship to materialism.

All this stuff and power people aspire to - is seen as being truly ridiculous as awakening is reached / attained.

A different set of ideals pushes aside striving for stuff.

Optimisation of mind, body and spirit
- and nothing to do with moere money, stuff than others
- or power over others.

One sees that those who aspire to money/power have had to field sub-standard logically flawed minds to worship those ideals.

Much as the saying goes - those who would be your leaders are by definition - those least fit to lead.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 03:28 PM
Apparently people want a large car - which they can't service and so need to work to pay for servicing.
Apparently that large car needs lots of petrol and so they need to work to pay for petrol - to fill the car.
Apparently the car needs to be driven regularly or it seizes up - so they have to fill it with petrol and drive it places - which they're then required to do,
So - they drive it places and need to pay for parking when they arrive at some other place.
And then comes the need for a gps to get to some place and a mobile phone - which they pay for so they can get some place and then phone their friends to tell them when they'll be home.
And then they find that they're away from home and so need to go and buy food - so spend spend spend spend spend

- one purchase necessitates another

- the individual becomes addicted to money -- if the individual commences this style of life.

Yes you need a pair of pants and a pair of shoes
- some kinda' vegetables and a bit of heat

- but given a warm country - you can make a pair of pants/shoes last for years and years and years
- and you're free from the need for money.

That's true freedom - nobody can make you do anything if you've no need for money.

Freedom.

(from material attachment)

-- the yearning for a life without money.

ana futura
10-12-13, 03:31 PM
SB, I highly doubt you will find an answer that is satisfactory to you regarding meditation through this line of thinking. It will likely never come. As far as I can see, the only way to answer the questions you have is to have the experience first hand- through meditation practice. It will all make sense once you begin the practice.

Everything Thich Nhat Hanh said used to be gibberish to me too. But now I read what he writes and it makes perfect sense.

It's like trying to explain to someone how to play a guitar, what that feels like, and what it does to a person, without ever giving them a guitar, or any musical instrument. It just simply won't work.

Why exactly do you need this answer so desperately?

SB_UK
10-12-13, 03:50 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNSUOFgj97Myou choose!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oz2LoNfpmZs
We need to take it back in time,
When music made us all unite!
And it wasn't low blows and video hoes,
Am I the only one getting tired?

SB_UK
10-12-13, 03:54 PM
Why exactly do you need this answer so desperately?

Because nobody should do anything unless it makes sense.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 03:57 PM
You have no idea how much nonsense there is in the world out there!

Try EVERYTHING to do with genomic medicine for a start.

ana futura
10-12-13, 03:59 PM
Because nobody should do anything unless it makes sense.

There's sense, and then there's SENSE. I do a lot of things based upon the reports of others, because I have no way of knowing what a thing will be until I do it myself. So I can either try the thing out directly, or I can ask others their opinions and go from there, but before I try a new thing I really won't get it until I do it.

I had no idea what riding a bike would be like until I did it. I just had to go on the words of others- that this would be a fun experience in the end. Because all I had to go on in the beginning was the fact that every time I got on the bike, I fell off. It wasn't pleasant. As a beginner, riding a bike did not make sense- and it never made any sense at all until I really learned how do it.

ana futura
10-12-13, 04:13 PM
And I'm not trying to be cryptic or withholding, I'm just frustrated because I think I can't possibly give you the answer you seek. I'm still not really sure what your question is. I thought I knew what your question was, but maybe I don't. I've given you the extent of my knowledge, as have others here. Based upon my own experiences and what I have read, my instinct tells my that you would really like what meditation has to offer, but I'm at the end of my ability to explain why I feel that way.

If you are still not satisfied, and still interested, then perhaps you should research this on your own more. The book Buddha's Brain would probably be a good place to start, as would Full Catastrophe Living by Jon Kabat Zinn.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 04:25 PM
had brains built essentially like anyone else's, yet they were able to harness their thoughts and shape their patterns of thinking in ways that changed history.

There are no Haves and Have nots without money/law (enforcement).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJt7gNi3Nr4

dvdnvwls
10-12-13, 04:26 PM
Because nobody should do anything unless it makes sense.
Everything that makes sense, makes sense within a context. There is no such thing as context-less sense.

I may be mis-attributing, but I believe Thich Nhat Hanh is telling you (and I do mean you personally, SB_UK, and myself as well) "Look again; your context is wrong; therefore, what you are calling things that make sense do not actually make sense at all."

SB_UK
10-12-13, 04:31 PM
Because nobody should do anything unless it makes sense.


Just the 'usual' path to some unsatisfactory outcome.

If an idea can't be explained using simple language - then it should be regarded as suspect.

The idea must be simply expressed - though need not be provable.

Nothing is provable.

The truth of 'anything' rests in its consistency with everything else.

The illusion of 'real' sold by science is just that.

In the end - we're looking for a consistent story - and it's in the consistency that people will find satisfaction.

SB_UK
10-12-13, 04:35 PM
Everything that makes sense, makes sense within a context. There is no such thing as context-less sense.

I may be mis-attributing, but I believe Thich Nhat Hanh is telling you (and I do mean you personally, SB_UK, and myself as well) "Look again; your context is wrong; therefore, what you are calling things that make sense do not actually make sense at all."

Human beings evolved a mind which wants to make sense of things.
We can make sense of things.
Failure to make sense of things 'd drive creatures with a mind completely insane.

Imagine if random unexplained things were to happen - you would be driven insane from lack of understanding.

We can understand
- but when we do - the entire knowledge structure collapses

- and just as Dorothy found when she realised the Wizard of Oz was fake
- she arrived back in Kansas ('back to the garden').

SB_UK
10-12-13, 04:41 PM
~

I can imagine what playing {insert 'thing'} 'd be like by watching somebody else doing it.

I think many can.

ana futura
10-12-13, 05:38 PM
I can imagine what playing {insert 'thing'} 'd be like by watching somebody else doing it.

I think many can.

I really disagree. Or maybe it's not that I'm not talking about imagining, but talking about experiencing. Sometimes what you imagine turns out to be very different from reality (first hand experience). We all have expectations of what things will actually feel like, but we won't know what the thing actually feels like (or its true nature) until we experience it first hand. I mean, you can "imagine" it, conceptually, but you can't feel it.

Imagining what it's like to play the drums, and learning to play the drums at a competent level, are two very different things, although they are related.

If you want mediation explained in simple language here you go- by learning to train my attention, I can pay more attention to what is important to me, without getting distracted. I can also learn to pay better attention to my emotional needs, and the needs of others.

By learning to pay attention to the immediate, I can better see how the world is mired in Dukkha. Of course I understood this conceptually prior to meditation, but meditation has brought me much more insight into the nature of Dukkha. It is also brought me the awarness that my understanding of Dukkha could still be expanded greatly.

There are also other benefits, that I can't explain. For some reason, the act of meditation makes me not want to drink. For some reason, the act of meditation makes me not want to consume material objects. I don't know why this is, but it happens. That's my experience.

sarek
10-12-13, 05:49 PM
I know why it happens Ana. Meditation puts you in touch with objective Conscience.

ana futura
10-12-13, 05:56 PM
SB, it's also important to keep in mind that when you imagine what a certain experience will feel like, a lot of that expectation is based upon your perceived experiences of others.

If I just look at a drum set, with no prior knowledge of what people look and sound like who play drums, I'm not going to get very far with imagining how it will feel.

When I imagine what playing the drums might be like, having never played them myself, I'm going to think back on what other people who have played the drums have told me about it. I'm going to think back on the times I've seen proficient drummers play.

When you imagine what meditation is like, you have to let the experiences of others inform your expectations, or else it's like trying to pull information out of a vacuum.

My experience, as a person who has spent a chunk of time meditating, is that meditation is an amazing experience, and also hard to describe in words. Others here have shared other experiences with you. You could collate those experiences, and let them inform your expectations a bit, and that might help your understanding.

It's also possible that you could wind up doing a thing and find it awful, that's always a possibility. But again, you won't be able to truly experience it until you experience it first hand.

ana futura
10-12-13, 05:59 PM
I know why it happens Ana. Meditation puts you in touch with objective Conscience.

I thought it was because it exposed me to true clarity, and having had the experience of true clarity I begin to crave that clarity all the time. And I begin to see, identify, and choose to resist the things that hamper that clarity.

Objective Conscience works too I suppose!

ana futura
10-12-13, 06:26 PM
There is also the idea that expectations actually hamper our ability to understand and experience a thing.

Jon Kabat Zinn says that many people come to his MBSR courses because they have certain expectations about what MBSR is and what it will do for them. In the beginning, those expectations are a good thing- as the expected experience is what brings people to the practice of meditation in the first place. But then, once you begin the practice, you have to set those expectations aside, or they will hamper you.

I have found this to be true for every learned skill in my life (and I consider meditation to be akin to a learned skill)

dvdnvwls
10-12-13, 06:42 PM
Human beings evolved a mind which wants to make sense of things.
We can make sense of things.
Failure to make sense of things 'd drive creatures with a mind completely insane.

Imagine if random unexplained things were to happen - you would be driven insane from lack of understanding.

We can understand
- but when we do - the entire knowledge structure collapses

- and just as Dorothy found when she realised the Wizard of Oz was fake
- she arrived back in Kansas ('back to the garden').
Yes, exactly. He's telling you and me that we are currently functionally insane because we have made sense of the world according to false premises. He's saying that your personal knowledge structure is fundamentally flawed (and mine too) and that the sooner it collapses the better.

ginniebean
10-12-13, 09:46 PM
You can kill the mind off by completing it

- the mind then has no further questions.

There is no need to kill the mind and that's violence to the self.

You are not your mind.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 03:27 AM
There is no need to kill the mind and that's violence to the self.

You are not your mind.

:-)

- complete the mind if you prefer.

I like kill because the mind is an infuriating chap.

It also helps to balance the pro-mind state we have at the moment
- that to be clever is everything.

The point isn't to be clever.
The point is to be happy.

And as it happens we become globally logically consistent (consistent is the best measure of intelligence) when we become happy by default.

However ... ... being consistent doesn't mean that we're at liberty to spout jargon in every domain of human mental endeavour
- instead - we get to see that pretty much everything that human beings have ovre-complicated in the academic and elsewhere arena
- is a continuation of an error.

Lower perspective -> It's wise to service cars in this world [accidents otherwise]
Higher perspective -> It's unwise to drive cars in this world [we can't all have a car - environmental destruction - 'we paved paradise and put up a ... ...']

So - this world's intelligence states a plan to pull off a 1 mpg increase in efficiency of a petrol engine.
Higher intelligence states it's time to get all of the cars we've made together - to recycle them and to keep the raw materials for better usage.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 03:30 AM
If you want mediation explained in simple language here you go- by learning to train my attention, I can pay more attention ... ...


But I've just explained that that's what I imagine 'd be the point of meditation:
http://www.addforums.com/forums/showpost.php?p=1552414&postcount=103

SB_UK
10-13-13, 03:37 AM
So ... ...

Improved focus - OK.

But but but - I'm more suggesting that focus is being simultaneously degraded by di(stress)
- and so

di(stress) alleviation + meditation = laser-like attention.

I don't appear to be able to make the point that you need both.

Here's the example I've just used.

Over-eating + Lack of exercise -> Obesity
Over-eating + Exercise -> Most likely obesity (it's hard to exercise effectively when obese)
Eating optimally + Exercise -> Normal weight.
di(stress) alleviation + Meditation -> Attentional skills.

Meditation like Exercise whilst over-eating/subject to stress will not restore complete attentional skills without assistance from cutting down on food/(di)stress alleviation will be markedly less effective.

If you're going into work each and every day with an idiot bully sitting in front of you, expecting you to perform the impossible - and screaming at ypu because of it -
- which has happened in nearly each and every workplace I've been in
- then it doesn't matter the extent to which you've trained in meditiation,

You won't be able to pay attention under exceptional stress.

And ADDers are susceptible to stress (see Barliman - highly sensitive person).

SB_UK
10-13-13, 03:46 AM
As far as I can see - all that meditation does is train the mind not to think thoughts which lead to a stress response.
Stress degrades cognitive function,

Meditation's useful - but it's far more useful to stop the (di)stressors first.

Yes - it can help in the presence of (di)stressor - but you'll see meditation's true utility in the absence of (di)stressor.

(Di)stressor defined using epidemiology ie factors associated with negative outcomes eg social hierarchy, smoking, living in a nuclear reactor etc etc

(Di)stressor alleviation possible by simply guaranteeing all people basic survival necessities through co-operative working.

You can forget all of the words generated by religion - because it appears as though people don't seem to understand them.
Fail to understand them - and what's the point.

-*-

So - to re-inforce the idea - I think that meditation simply trains the mind to shift away from thoughts which drive the stress response
- thereby eliminating the constant onslaught which the mind within current society applies to itself.

I mean - there's even an ever so famous phrase which echoes this idea:'you have nothing to fear but fear itself'
- now that phrase is nearly true -

- but in a world of money - the majority of what you have to fear is the fear response itself
- but you actually do have something very real to fear in this current world.

And that's people who've been educated in this world towards selfish greed.

They're dangerously psychopathic.

Watch this video - the chap who kills his friend - is the person you become if you decide to pursue the materialist pathway:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wxN2Mewamj0
There's never enough to satisfy selfish greed.

It's the true addiction - and must not be fed.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 03:54 AM
For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil

I have a 6, 8 and 10 year old who have read the line above and watched the video above and who understand.

It's not hard.

There's no point in having a laser-like attention if you're going to have to apply it to immorality.

That just means that you're better at societally destructive applications.

It's better not to be able to pay attention to immoral behaviours.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 05:33 AM
Making this idea as simple as possible.

It's like filling a bath (meditation) with the plug pulled out (water leaking away ie distress exposure).
Yes - it's important to fill the bath, if you want to wash.
But you'll never wash effectively if the plug is pulled.

Now - the flow rate (meditation) is - I'm suggesting - in current society - considerably less than the efflux rate (distress exposure -> cognitive/attentional decline).

In simple language - you can't pay attention if you're stressed out of your mind.

If we take a look at experienced meditators - eg the monk - it's not a fair comparison - because they're generally in safe communities (eg Plum village) AND are skilled at meditating.

So - they've a maximal water influx rate and zero efflux rate.
That's perfect.

And worse still - the efflux rate occupies pipe space and so limits influx rate.


So - in summary -
limit di(stress) maximise the utility of meditation.

Yes - you can wash even when the plug's out
- but in many cases - it's not worth the effort.

Imagine some guy meditating in the midst of a chemical warfare attack -
- well - death might be a little less traumatic but but but

- so what ???

SB_UK
10-13-13, 05:46 AM
Exactly as suggested by Barliman's recent intentional typo.

Medication and Meditation are 2 sides of the same coin.
Neither target the root cause of disease/attentional instability respectively.

They differ in that meditation rather than medication will be retained in a distress free world - but otherwise are 'cures' and are not preventing the problem they're curing arising in future.

The goal must always be to rip out weeds by the root.

You need a (di)stress free environment to eliminate at root - disease/attentional instability.

That's all.

A (di)stress free environment is provided through all people having unconditional access to survival essentials through co-operative working.
You'll find that other causes for (di)stress dissolve through implementing this single change.

Kunga Dorji
10-13-13, 08:54 AM
http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=3490&Itemid=0&limit=1&limitstart=0
Thich Nhat Hanh on The Practice of Mindfulness

Haven't been able to find an explanation of meditation/mindfulness which resonates.

The chap referenced above appears to be considered highly.

My problem - I do the exact opposite of what he's describing.

So - I try and auto-pilot everything - because my mind is happy in auto-pilot.

So - mind in auto-pilot is like driving the car on an empty road. [relaxed]

Mind which is present - is like driving the car in a very slow moving traffic jam [irritating,road rage].

I'm trying to suggest that my mind is trying not to be mindful of what's actually happening - and that when it is mindful eg in a traffic jam where it's constantly operating - it's really unhappy.

So - there's something very wrong here - I'm advocating the exact opposite of the Buddhist expert above - and he's gotta' be right being an expert - but I just don't see how.

I like to dissociate/daydream/transcend - I like to overcome mind
- I kinda' think that when we bypass mind - we become in the present

- but I personally - have no recollection of what happens in the present - it's as though being in the present bypasses memory
- which I can explain 'd make sense.

Memory kinda' drags us into living in the past or future ... ... ...

Anyway something very wrong here.

One can be mindfully aware of being a person considering a future event.

Dissociation is the absolute opposite of mindfulness- but there is atime for daydreaming.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 11:08 AM
wikip/mindfulness is considered to be of great importance in the path to enlightenment.

Is everybody happy with that statement ?

SB_UK
10-13-13, 11:20 AM
I think that there has to be some real understanding that mindfulness is a terrible term to described whatever it's describing.

From wikiP/mindfulness
"there are three terms that together map the field of mindfulness . . . All three terms are sometimes (confusingly) translated as "mindfulness,""

OK - so that's a complete nightmare - especially because:

"and the three together comprise "wise reflection""<sup id="cite_ref-20" class="reference"></sup>
-- which is what I suggested here:
http://www.addforums.com/forums/showpost.php?p=1547173&postcount=62

SB_UK
10-13-13, 11:24 AM
Sadly though - I've convergence between

contemplation
meditation
mindfulness

as simply and nothing more complicated than the application of a near to complete/complete mind.

I am defining a complete mind as a mind of wisdom - which is globally logically consistent
- is incapable of being inconsistent with itself.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 11:33 AM
Now this is just plain getting silly.

I'm repeating that the goal is to develop a mind which overcomes greed and to develop a society in which people are not distressed.
I've repeated this over and over.

And:
Noble_Eightfold_Path#Right_mindfulness (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noble_Eightfold_Path#Right_mindfulness)
"And what, monks, is right mindfulness?
(i) —putting away greed and distress with reference to the world.
(ii) —putting away greed and distress with reference to the world.
(iii) —putting away greed and distress with reference to the world.
(iv) —putting away greed and distress with reference to the world.
This, monks, is called right mindfulness."

SB_UK
10-13-13, 11:37 AM
from #44 (Buddha)
- all that mindfulness is fulling (building) a mind.

The mind is filled through launching an enquiry into morality.

When the mind is completed it loses the tendency towards selfish greed.

It also then specifies a mechanism by which society can change to eliminate distress to people.

Suffering is overcome - since with change in reward systems - the individual is no longer stuck in a reward system which can never be satisfied.

dukkha

-*-

I'm suggesting that simply 'thinking' in a certain way (building the moral mind) = mindfulness.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 11:39 AM
Dissociation is the absolute opposite of mindfulness- but there is atime for daydreaming.

I see daydreaming as extending the mind.
And mindfulness as using the mind (as above).

No ??

So - daydreaming puts up the scaffold, mindfulness involves climbing it.
Ultimately when the scaffold and 'climb' is complete - the individual's wise/enlightened/happy etc

SB_UK
10-13-13, 11:47 AM
Aaarghhh!!!

This is exactly what I've been repeating.

The teaching of the Buddha (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gautama_Buddha) constituting as it does a method by which people can come out of their condition of suffering (dukkha (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dukkha)) involves developing an awareness of reality (see mindfulness (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness)).

but that's a MIND (thinking) thing.

You can understand reality - generate a globally logically consistent mind - kill off mind - be happy.

As simple as that.

Just comes down to something as simple as understanding the importance of duality in what we call reality aka yinyang symbol.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 11:55 AM
OK - so does this idea resonate -
there's mindfulness as used by Buddha which is what I'm referring to and mindfulness/meditation as used by Ana Futura/psychology ie 2 different definitions of mindfulness.

Ana Futura is looking at a mechanical application of something called mindfulness meditation / meditation - which results in stress relief
- and as we see on mindfulness (psychology) - stress relief (anxiety and depression which're related) are treated using these mechanical techniques.

But they're different.

Why different ?
Because the mechanical technique as used in psychology is divorced from moral considerations but in eg Buddhism - has morality as a key component.

ana futura
10-13-13, 11:56 AM
wikip/mindfulness

is considered to be of great importance in the path to enlightenment.

Is everybody happy with that statement ?

The idea of "enlightenment" has nothing to do with why I practice meditation

ana futura
10-13-13, 11:58 AM
OK - so does this idea resonate -
there's mindfulness as used by Buddha which is what I'm referring to and mindfulness/meditation as used by Ana Futura/psychology ie 2 different definitions of mindfulness.

Ana Futura is looking at a mechanical application of something called mindfulness meditation / meditation - which results in stress relief
- and as we see on mindfulness (psychology) - stress relief (anxiety and depression which're related) are treated using these mechanical techniques.

But they're different.

Why different ?
Because the mechanical technique as used in psychology is divorced from moral considerations but in eg Buddhism - has morality as a key component.

It's not with the intention of stress relief at all. It's bringing you closer to your "self" (whatever the self is). That means you come closer to your emotions, both good and bad, not further away.

Stress relief is often a nice side effect, but not always. I have also had extremely traumatic things happen after meditation.

If I had to offer you one reason as to why I meditate it would be "insight".

Everything western psychologists know about mindfulness and meditation they have lifted straight from Buddhism. They aren't two different things- it's two different translations of the same thing.

The way I was taught had compassion as a key tenet, it was not divorced from anything. If you want to learn more about what I was taught, read Jack Kornfield's "Wise Heart".

SB_UK
10-13-13, 11:59 AM
You see - there's no way that Buddhist mindfulness 'd be useful to help people kill.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/wellbeing/9772911/Nows-the-moment-for-mindfulness.html

"The US military (hardly a bastion of hippiedom) offers marines mindfulness training before they are deployed, in recognition that it is an effective form of mental discipline."

-*-

Simply - it's a bit like suggesting that Buddhism uses weight training with the intention of its disciples using their power to help carry shopping bags home for old age pensioners
- but the basic technique (becoming stronger) - can easily be used to steal the handbags off pensioners on their way home from the post office.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 12:00 PM
The idea of "enlightenment" has nothing to do with why I practice meditation

I'm quoting Buddha on mindfulness - to be fair - he's gotta' be seen as an expert witness.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 12:05 PM
It's not with the intention of stress relief at all. It's bringing you closer to your "self" (whatever the self is). That means you come closer to your emotions, both good and bad, not further away.

Stress relief is often a nice side effect, but not always. I have also had extremely traumatic things happen after meditation.

If I had to offer you one reason as to why I meditate it would be "insight".

Everything western psychologists know about mindfulness and meditation they have lifted straight from Buddhism. They aren't two different things- it's two different translations of the same thing.

The way I was taught had compassion as a key tenet, it was not divorced from anything. If you want to learn more about what I was taught, read Jack Kornfield's "Wise Heart".

No - there's no way that the military can use mindfulness if morality is an essential component.

Buddhism/religion has a definite stance on violence.

It's a no no.

ana futura
10-13-13, 12:06 PM
I'm quoting Buddha on mindfulness - to be fair - he's gotta' be seen as an expert witness.

I put "idea" in italics there for a reason. Read about what the Buddha has to say about people who desire enlightenment. Desiring enlightenment is a another form of Dukkha.

ana futura
10-13-13, 12:08 PM
No - there's no way that the military can use mindfulness if morality is an essential component.

Buddhism/religion has a definite stance on violence.

It's a no no.

Ah, have you read about the history of Japan? Or China? Ideology can only do so much.

Christ has a stance on violence as well. That didn't stop the crusades.

Read this- http://www.tricycle.com/blog/q-lt-jeanette-shin-us-militarys-first-buddhist-chaplain

ana futura
10-13-13, 12:29 PM
I don't like using the word enlightenment because I think it is poorly understood. It confuses people, it confused me for a very long time. That's why I call it the "idea" of enlightenment.

The state of enlightenment is within everyone already. It is a state where you are completely in the present moment, no matter what that moment is. It is blissful, because being you are is already blissful. It is a state of endless love and compassion, because we all have that state within us already, and that is our natural state.

The purpose of meditation I suppose is to unveil that state (which is already there)

But the purpose of meditation is also to eliminate hinderances to that state- like anxiety and fear.

That "state" is the "real" you. The you that is "beyond thought". To get there you do not kill the mind, you make it so the mind is whole.

Western translations of Buddhism offer key parts of the package. We all get as much as we are willing to seek. I find that it is inevitable that by practicing mindfulness you will become more capable of compassion.

I suppose it can be misused, but that has not been my experience.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 12:33 PM
I put "idea" in italics there for a reason. Read about what the Buddha has to say about people who desire enlightenment. Desiring enlightenment is a another form of Dukkha.

Nobody said anything about desiring enlightenment - just about knowing that it's the path to.

I know how to get to London, I might even take the train to London each day
- but that doesn't mean that I desire to go there.

I don't.

ana futura
10-13-13, 12:36 PM
“I’m enlightened because I realized that enlightenment is knowing that there is nothing you have to do to be enlightened. You simply had to be exactly what you are being right now, and then make choice about that, deliberately and with intention.”

The Buddha had discovered that you can choose to be peaceful no matter what is going on. You can choose to be loving no matter what is going on. You can choose to be gentle no matter what is going on. You can choose to be forgiving and compassionate and totally okay, no matter what is going on. You can choose to be wise and very clear about all of this, no matter what is going on.

The "no matter what is going on" part is as important as the "do nothing" part.

http://www.theglobalconversation.com/blog/?p=4305

SB_UK
10-13-13, 12:38 PM
Ah, have you read about the history of Japan? Or China? Ideology can only do so much.

Christ has a stance on violence as well. That didn't stop the crusades.

Read this- http://www.tricycle.com/blog/q-lt-jeanette-shin-us-militarys-first-buddhist-chaplain

Mindfulness comes straight from the mind of Buddha.
He's not describing mindfulness in a sense which can be applied to violence.
Apparently mindfulness is useful in helping killing machines kill better.
Suggesting - that mindfulness is often being used as a term to simply describe attentional training.
No connection to morality is necessary.

ana futura
10-13-13, 12:39 PM
Nobody said anything about desiring enlightenment - just about knowing that it's the path to.

I know how to get to London, I might even take the train to London each day
- but that doesn't mean that I desire to go there.

I don't.

But you talk about it a lot! If you mentioned London as often as you mentioned enlightenment, I would have to assume you really want to go to London!

The concepts behind the term enlightenment- compassion, peace, and being present in every moment, and being completely aware of death- yes, those things are all meaningful to me, and they are all part of the reason I meditate when I meditate.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 12:40 PM
I don't like using the word enlightenment because I think it is poorly understood.

Enlightenment = Freedom from material world attachment.
Material world attachment is seen as loss of the love/desire of money.
The love/desire of money is the root of all evil.
At enlightenment one becomes enforcedly moral.

Easy.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 12:41 PM
enlightenment
is a synonym for wisdom.

That's all.

ana futura
10-13-13, 12:43 PM
Mindfulness comes straight from the mind of Buddha.
He's not describing mindfulness in a sense which can be applied to violence.
Apparently mindfulness is useful in helping killing machines kill better.
Suggesting - that mindfulness is often being used as a term to simply describe attentional training.
No connection to morality is necessary.

I fail to see your point. Anything can be misused. What you are talking about is a highly contentious topic in Buddhism. But, it is what it is. I think it's messed up that the Dalai Lama eats chicken, but I am not him, so I can't judge him for that. All I can do is continue not eating chickens.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 12:44 PM
But you talk about it a lot!
It's the only motif in religion ie dying and going to heaven etc

SB_UK
10-13-13, 12:47 PM
I fail to see your point.

Mindfulness is defined by Buddha.
Violence is contrary to everything Buddhism stands for.
Mindfulness is useful to make killing machines better.
Therefore mindfulness (as the term has been come to known) is a mechanical action which may be used for training attention and which may be used for good or evil.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 12:48 PM
What you are talking about is a highly contentious topic in Buddhism.

It's not highly contentious - it's part of the eight-fold path
- a central teaching in Buddhism.

ana futura
10-13-13, 12:56 PM
It's not highly contentious - it's part of the eight-fold path
- a central teaching in Buddhism.

It's contentious BECAUSE it's a part of the eight-fold path!

Did you read that interview? It's complicated!

There are people who think that Buddhists have no place being in the military, and that the mere idea of a Buddhist chaplain in the military is incompatible with Buddhism, and then there are those who think that the military is a better place with them there- that the end result might be something positive, and that for that reason it's completely Buddhist!

ana futura
10-13-13, 01:00 PM
Therefore mindfulness (as the term has been come to known) is a mechanical action which may be used for training attention and which may be used for good or evil.

Then why not embrace it and use it for good? The more who use it for good, the less chance there is of it being misunderstood.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:01 PM
It's contentious BECAUSE it's a part of the eight-fold path!

Did you read that interview? It's complicated!

There are people who think that Buddhists have no place being in the military, and that the mere idea of a Buddhist chaplain in the military is incompatible with Buddhism, and then there are those who think that the military is a better place with them there- that the end result might be something positive, and that for that reason it's completely Buddhist!

Huh?
Forget Buddhists - I'm only talking Buddha.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:02 PM
Then why not embrace it and use it for good? The more who use it for good, the less chance there is of it being misunderstood.

But I've agreed it looks as though it'll work.
Buddha's recommending it - and so whatever mindfulness is - it looks like it's worthwhile.

I'm more discussing how to make it much, much more effective.

ana futura
10-13-13, 01:02 PM
Huh?
Forget Buddhists - I'm only talking Buddha.

That's like saying- forget Christians, I'm only talking Christ. You can do that, but you miss the fuller picture- of how a belief system lives and operates in the world.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:05 PM
So ... ...

Improved focus - OK.

But but but - I'm more suggesting that focus is being simultaneously degraded by di(stress)
- and so

di(stress) alleviation + meditation = laser-like attention.

I don't appear to be able to make the point that you need both.

Here's the example I've just used.

Over-eating + Lack of exercise -> Obesity
Over-eating + Exercise -> Most likely obesity (it's hard to exercise effectively when obese)
Eating optimally + Exercise -> Normal weight.
di(stress) alleviation + Meditation -> Attentional skills.

Meditation like Exercise whilst over-eating/subject to stress will not restore complete attentional skills without assistance from cutting down on food/(di)stress alleviation will be markedly less effective.

If you're going into work each and every day with an idiot bully sitting in front of you, expecting you to perform the impossible - and screaming at ypu because of it -
- which has happened in nearly each and every workplace I've been in
- then it doesn't matter the extent to which you've trained in meditiation,

You won't be able to pay attention under exceptional stress.

And ADDers are susceptible to stress (see Barliman - highly sensitive person).


- that's all really

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:07 PM
That's like saying- forget Christians, I'm only talking Christ. You can do that, but you miss the fuller picture- of how a belief system lives and operates in the world.

Only pay attention to Christ and Buddha
- ignore anybody who claims to represent 'em.

ana futura
10-13-13, 01:07 PM
But I've agreed it looks as though it'll work.
I'm discussing how to make it much, much more effective.

But as far as I know you don't actually practice meditation or mindfulness (apologies if I'm wrong), Why are you interested in making something more effective that you don't have an intention to do?

If mindfulness and meditation have shortcomings, the shortcomings belong to the practitioner. Everything for it to be effective in the manner that you describe is already out there, and being actively disseminated. Thich Nhat Hanh is already doing what you are talking about.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:09 PM
To great a scope for mis-representation.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:11 PM
But as far as I know you don't actually practice meditation or mindfulness (apologies if I'm wrong), Why are you interested in making something more effective that you don't have an intention to do?

Because the morality part to the mechanical process of mindfulness is more important to me.

And that morality part won't arise from anything other than societal infrastructural change - no manner the amount of thinking will make an immoral world less moral.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:12 PM
As far as I'm concerned - training attention (mindfulness) in this world is akin to becoming better at killing thy neighbour.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:13 PM
There's an interesting parallel here to medication (dexedrine)
- which simply allows the mind to focus on stuff it's not interested in.

Or to become better at killing thy neighbour.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:20 PM
Simple question - I'm shifting to medication now.

Imagine medication no longer works (it no longer works for me)
- what's the choice ?

To dissolve in stress or To change society globally.

There actually is no option - you have to change society globally.

A collapse in money/law is required.

And it's going to happen.

Fingers crossed October 17th - or maybe Thanksgiving (6 week extension of the debt ceiling) -

December 25th - How "render unto Caesar what is Caesar's" became the jewel in he ever so shiny crown of materialism ?

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:39 PM
How do you generate a world in which 'love thy neighbour' [anterior cingulate cortex reward mechanism] is in control of our behaviour ?

Remove the one impediment preventing proper human behaviour.

Money.

The global economic system needs to collapse.

ana futura
10-13-13, 01:43 PM
As far as I'm concerned - training attention (mindfulness) in this world is akin to becoming better at killing thy neighbour.

Buddha's world was no different from this world. We are always dealing with same things.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 01:58 PM
love [anterior cingulate cortex neurochemical reward pathway - social]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oz2LoNfpmZs

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skJddbSJQjA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNSUOFgj97M
war[pre-frontal cortex neurochemical reward pathway - selfish]

SB_UK
10-13-13, 02:03 PM
Buddha's world was no different from this world. We are always dealing with same things.

The need to embrace the teachings of Buddha/Christ (et al.) is more presssing.

The stakes are higher today.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 02:29 PM
There are no Haves and Have nots without money/law (enforcement).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJt7gNi3Nr4

"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal."

SB_UK
10-13-13, 02:38 PM
mind
body
spirit

not

exclu$ive car
de$igner clothing
Famou$ In$titutional certificate

ana futura
10-13-13, 02:45 PM
Let us now deal with those having a direct involvement with War, The King or in today's context the Government and the soldier. Does Buddhism permit the State to build and foster an Army?. Can a good Buddhist be a soldier? and can he kill for the sake of the country? What about the 'Defence' of a country.? When a ruthless army invades a country, does Buddhism prohibit a Buddhist King to defend his country and his people? If Buddhism is a 'way of life,' is there any other way for a righteous king to battle against an invasion of an army.?

The Damma is a way of life based on Right Thought, Right Livelihood, Right Action etc. culminating in the supreme goal of Nibbana . However it is a gradual process of training and progressing on the path through one's long samsaric journey until one has fulfilled the necessery conditions and is ready to let go the cycle of birth decay and death. Hence, until then the King has to rule, the farmer has to farm, teacher has to teach, the trader has to trade and so on. But they are expected to do it the Buddhist way in order to help them progress on the path.
http://www.beyondthenet.net/thedway/soldier.htm

I think that through mindfulness and meditation it is impossible not to arrive at the conclusions you describe. But you arrive there differently- it is not a mere conceptual exercise. You feel a deep desire for compassion and love and non-judgement arise from within you. I certainly agreed with everything you say prior to meditation, but it is different now. The world does not hurt me in the way that it used to, so instead of simply desiring to be compassionate, I can embody that feeling.

It is true that the concept of mindfulness in the west does need some fleshing out. It is a mistake to divorce meditation from the eight fold path.

However, a great many westerners are afraid of Buddhism. They don't understand it, they think it is something it is not. Others do not care. Taking a few choice aspects, and packaging them up as mindfulness is a way to introduce these desperately needed concepts to the west.

Insight can not help but lead to compassion. It is inevitable. However, I do agree that the process is hurried along when attentional training is performed with compassion in mind.

That is already happening- see Jack Kornfield and Thich Nhat Hanh and JKZ, and the many other western teachers, monks, and psychologists who are exposing various parts of the whole to the west.

I agree, to truly get to where we need to be as a society, we need to be introduced to the whole. But you have to start somewhere, and mindfulness practice is a very good place to start.

SB_UK
10-13-13, 03:47 PM
http://www.beyondthenet.net/thedway/soldier.htm

I think that through mindfulness and meditation it is impossible not to arrive at the conclusions you describe. But you arrive there differently- it is not a mere conceptual exercise. You feel a deep desire for compassion and love and non-judgement arise from within you. I certainly agreed with everything you say prior to meditation, but it is different now. The world does not hurt me in the way that it used to, so instead of simply desiring to be compassionate, I can embody that feeling.

It is true that the concept of mindfulness in the west does need some fleshing out. It is a mistake to divorce meditation from the eight fold path.

However, a great many westerners are afraid of Buddhism. They don't understand it, they think it is something it is not. Others do not care. Taking a few choice aspects, and packaging them up as mindfulness is a way to introduce these desperately needed concepts to the west.

Insight can not help but lead to compassion. It is inevitable. However, I do agree that the process is hurried along when attentional training is performed with compassion in mind.

That is already happening- see Jack Kornfield and Thich Nhat Hanh and JKZ, and the many other western teachers, monks, and psychologists who are exposing various parts of the whole to the west.

I agree, to truly get to where we need to be as a society, we need to be introduced to the whole. But you have to start somewhere, and mindfulness practice is a very good place to start.

There's no longer any need for a subdivision into king, farmer, teacher, trader
- we can all become all.
King - we're all (children of) God and hence Kings.
Trader - voluntary exchange.

As for farmer (gardener) and teacher (of our children)
- well those qualities require no explanation.

mattif
10-13-13, 06:46 PM
Something about the dialogue occurring here made me think of an essay published in Shambhala Sun some years back. Perhaps it adds to the conversation...
The ninth-century Buddhist master Lin Chi is supposed to have said, “If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him.” Like much of Zen teaching, this seems too cute by half, but it makes a valuable point: to turn the Buddha into a religious fetish is to miss the essence of what he taught. In considering what Buddhism can offer the world in the twenty-first century, I propose that we take Lin Chi’s admonishment rather seriously. As students of the Buddha, we should dispense with Buddhism.

This is not to say that Buddhism has nothing to offer the world. One could surely argue that the Buddhist tradition, taken as a whole, represents the richest source of contemplative wisdom that any civilization has produced. In a world that has long been terrorized by fratricidal Sky-God religions, the ascendance of Buddhism (http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3407&Itemid=244) would surely be a welcome development. But this will not happen. There is no reason whatsoever to think that Buddhism can successfully compete with the relentless evangelizing of Christianity and Islam. Nor should it try to.
....
- continued (http://www.samharris.org/site/full_text/killing-the-buddha/#sthash.AFwLrtWV.dpuf)

Or view a .pdf copy of the original
Killing The Buddha (http://www.samharris.org/media/killing-the-buddha.pdf), Sam Harris, Shambhala Sun, March 2006.

dvdnvwls
10-14-13, 02:07 AM
As far as I'm concerned - training attention (mindfulness) in this world is akin to becoming better at killing thy neighbour.
Do you therefore desire to erase your attention, either through suicide or by some other means?

sarek
10-14-13, 02:21 AM
There is no reason to withhold from practising awareness and mindfulness techniques of whatever kind as long as you realise what it is originally intended for.
It is at its heart not meant for earthly pursuits but rather for healthy and balanced development of the "whatevertheycallit".

Meditation is meant to help you realise that you are asleep but you must be extremely careful never to believe that only a little casual practice of it will suffice to 'wake you up'
Much more is needed for that. I feel I would be severely amiss not mentioning that danger.

I'll let you in on a secret: pretty much every major religion or philosophy has its own form of mindfulness/awareness teaching, some more obscured and covered by the shifting currents of time than others, and usually connected to the esoteric directions rather than the exoteric ones. But for every serious seeker, no matter what their background or inclination is, there is his/her own variant of an answer out there to be found.

mattif
10-14-13, 02:48 AM
...mindfulness techniques.... is at its heart not meant for earthly pursuits...

It's meant for astronauts? :p

Meditation is meant to help you realise that you are asleep

Well, that is a common interpretation and teaching within some religious/philosophical traditions. But meditation transcends those traditions. Meditation, per se, is not 'meant'... for anything, by anyone.

I'll let you in on a secret: pretty much every major religion or philosophy has its own form of mindfulness/awareness teaching...

Which suggests that while there is likely something of real merit in the practice, it has precisely nothing to do with (any) religion.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 03:20 AM
Do you therefore desire to erase your attention, either through suicide or by some other means?

My sole point is that you need both.

Honed attention (through meditation) in a fair societal infrastructure.
If we've honed attention which is aimed at maintaining societal infrastructure then we harm our fellow man.
If we've honed attention which is aimed at changing societal infrastructure then we're working to the net benefit of our fellow man.

I'm trying to suggest that we need both ->
meditation (Attention) + fair society
... ... and that if we don't
- now switching back from meditation to medication
- what medication does (and I'm suggesting meditation too) is calm the 'alarm bells' (stress response) which allows us to align less painfully with the current rotten global societal structure of hierarchy.

-*-

So ... ... yes - we mustn't be rendered ineffective through stress in changing societal infrastructure - suggesting meditation is of use.
However - we mustn't reduce the feelings of stress to such a point that we can function in their presence- because then we'll be, n effect, using meditative/mindfulness training towards bringing out the inner psychopath.

-*-

Simple statement - if you're feeling stressed - work out why.
Determine how to change things to eliminate stress.
If the result of introspection is that we need to change the world - then tough - we have to change the world.

It isn't right that we strive towards deactivation of a very necessary attribute of human funtioning as an alternative to changing the world.

However however however -
it is very true that under chronic stress the individual CAN become completely ineffective at driving change
- and that's as useless a state as training the inner psychopath through meditation/mindfulness.

-*-

My basic point is - correct the underlying problem - an unfair global society - and meditation/mindfulness will become aspects of life which we adopt naturally.
IE we'll slip naturally into them and feel their benefits in a fair society.

Apply them in an unfair society and we're applying the paradigm I'm constantly repeating in science forum is doomed to failure.

Cure and not prevention.

If you're stressed we/you should strive towards using the scientific method to working out why
- and to eliminate di(stressor).

Epidemiology allows us to perform precisely this - without any requirement for mechanism.

Mechanism is satisfying - but really - what's the point in working out the exact chemical in cigarette smoke which is the most carcinogenic
- yes we need to make the connection - have a basic idea of why ie carcinogenic load leading to cancer and then we need to DO something about it.

Reduce di(stress) so people don't turn to self damaging behaviours to handle the stress of existence.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 03:27 AM
OK - so I'm going to try again in 1 sentence.

Medication (dexedrine) allows us to function by switching off the stress response which 'scatters' us;I'm suggesting that meditation does the same thing.


Now in slightly more detail:

MediCation is good if we use it [the increased attention span] towards net species benefit ie changing societal infrastructure, but is bad if we use it to allow ourselves to behave in accordance with our current rotten societal infrastructure.

MediTation is good if we use it [the increased attention span] towards net species benefit ie changing societal infrastructure, but is bad if we use it to allow ourselves to behave in accordance with our current rotten societal infrastructure.

Now - it won't come as any surprise to any to realise that mediC/Tation is generally used to help us fit in to the current rotten societal infrastructure
- because it's the easy option.

It is not the easy option to make the world a better place
- but that is the higher ideal to stable attention.

And - in fact - that world will permit us to slip into practices (effortlessly) which stabilize attention.

-*-

We can't pay attention to the 'things' we're meant to - because the vast majority of them're nonsense
- it would not be human (adder) to be able to pay attention to nonsense.

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick system. whether by mediCation of mediTation.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 03:36 AM
Something about the dialogue occurring here made me think of an essay published in Shambhala Sun some years back. Perhaps it adds to the conversation...
The ninth-century Buddhist master Lin Chi is supposed to have said, “If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him.” Like much of Zen teaching, this seems too cute by half, but it makes a valuable point: to turn the Buddha into a religious fetish is to miss the essence of what he taught. In considering what Buddhism can offer the world in the twenty-first century, I propose that we take Lin Chi’s admonishment rather seriously. As students of the Buddha, we should dispense with Buddhism.

This is not to say that Buddhism has nothing to offer the world. One could surely argue that the Buddhist tradition, taken as a whole, represents the richest source of contemplative wisdom that any civilization has produced. In a world that has long been terrorized by fratricidal Sky-God religions, the ascendance of Buddhism (http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3407&Itemid=244) would surely be a welcome development. But this will not happen. There is no reason whatsoever to think that Buddhism can successfully compete with the relentless evangelizing of Christianity and Islam. Nor should it try to.
....
- continued (http://www.samharris.org/site/full_text/killing-the-buddha/#sthash.AFwLrtWV.dpuf)

Or view a .pdf copy of the original
Killing The Buddha (http://www.samharris.org/media/killing-the-buddha.pdf), Sam Harris, Shambhala Sun, March 2006.



Whilst I wouldn't kill Buddha - I'd just ask him why I should pay attention to his teachings.

In this current world - he'd simply state that we can be happy through unsustainable (cigarettes,alcohol) or sustainable (helping people) means
- that these 'happinesses' are encoded at the level of our mind/brain as the 2 reward systems of man

-- and that one (sustainable) can be made to vanquish the other (unsustainable) with the practices which {insert prophet} teaches.

Easy.

You can't simultaneously love and NOT love money.

One needs to triumph over the other
- and science (a scientific understanding of reality) can help you to realise that that Mercedes Benz has no intrinisic value.

dvdnvwls
10-14-13, 04:15 AM
If we've honed attention which is aimed at changing societal infrastructure then we're working to the net benefit of our fellow man.
This is a false and dangerous assumption. Changing societal infrastructure can be a major detriment. Stalin honed his attention and aimed it at changing societal infrastructure, and his success was horrendous.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 11:29 AM
This is a false and dangerous assumption. Changing societal infrastructure can be a major detriment. Stalin honed his attention and aimed it at changing societal infrastructure, and his success was horrendous.

The change has to be in logically consistent with all of species benefit.

'Imagine'
- "it isn't very hard to do"

SB_UK
10-14-13, 02:06 PM
"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal."

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world

Come on people - there's a fairly obvious theme going on here.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 02:18 PM
~aka~
life's better without.
You can't own stuff - but stuff can own you.

But is it the stuff ?
No - it's the attraction for stuff.

It's the attraction (love/desire in love/desire of money) which I'm pointing to as the problem.

Yeah! but it's easy to 'lose' stuff - just throw it away
- it isn't easy to lose the love/desire of stuff.

Exactly - throw away your stuff and retain the love/desire for stuff and you're NO better off.

OK - so how do you throw off the love/desire of evil ?
Easy.

Easy to understand or do ?
To understand not do.

If the love/desire of money is the root of all evil - simply cultivating 'good' (through a personal enquiry into morality) can vanquish the love/desire of money.

Explain that more simply ?
You can either get your kicks from materialism (addictive) or get your kicks from properly social behaviour
- engaging in properly social behaviour vanquishes the drive towards reward from materialism.

But it's not properly social unless it comes from your own mind.

Simply copying what somebody else is doing for social wellbeing and waiting to get to Heaven won't do it.

You've gotta' build a mind which knows properly social behaviour first and foremost - such that when you 'do' - it comes from you.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 02:24 PM
Now - do I meditate or practice mindfulness ?
I'm afraid I wouldn't know even if I did.
I might do what people tell me to do when they meditate/are mindful - but I'm not entirely sure I'm meditating/being mindful - because I'm not too sure how I'd know.

It's a bit like asking if I've ever walked up some specific hill.
Now - I've walked up hills - but have never known their names - and will never know their names - and so am not sure whether or not I ever have done.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 02:41 PM
All things considered why not forget about meditation and mindfulness and just do something that we all know the meaning of ?

Create a fair world
- one in which all people have survival essentials through co-operative working.

No social hierarchy can persist if all people have all they need to survive.

Who'd be dumb enough to work for somebody else, if you don't need to ?

Working for money is simply just wage slavery
- by another term.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 02:45 PM
And freedom
- that's all that life is.

(== aims to greet)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SxH1m_IDAzE

SB_UK
10-14-13, 03:06 PM
Enlightenment = freedom from the reward mechanism which is referenced in the term 'love/desire' as used in the famous phrase - the 'love/desire' of money is the root of all evil.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 03:15 PM
If I can't pay attention - then how come I can pay attention ?

ADHD is simply attention trained on matters which deserve attention
- and not the capacity to train attention on matters which don't.

If it doesn't matter - we shouldn't be able to concentrate on it
- to concentrate on that which is unimportant is true disorder.

ALL THAT MATTERS IS MASSIVE GLOBAL INFRASTRUCTURAL CHANGE
- into one in which
EQUALITY
is a fixed attribute of (all of) man.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 03:17 PM
Anterior cingulate cortex reward system -> specifies attention
Not
Prefrontal cortex

Prefrontal cortex -> selfish behaviours
Anterior Cingulate Cortex -> social behaviours.

ADDers are a social species.

A new species.

Definitely.

SB_UK
10-14-13, 03:19 PM
Homo neosapiens sapienses

Kunga Dorji
10-15-13, 05:49 PM
If I can't pay attention - then how come I can pay attention ?

ADHD is simply attention trained on matters which deserve attention
- and not the capacity to train attention on matters which don't.

If it doesn't matter - we shouldn't be able to concentrate on it
- to concentrate on that which is unimportant is true disorder.

ALL THAT MATTERS IS MASSIVE GLOBAL INFRASTRUCTURAL CHANGE
- into one in which
EQUALITY
is a fixed attribute of (all of) man.

ADD would be better renamed attention dysregulation disorder, with the subtext to this description being that the ADD individual is unable to wilfully place his attention where it needs to be.

While the goal you describe is important- we have to attend to our duties close to home first.

Think globally act locally.

The most local action is action upon your own self designed to stabilise your own attention and emotional state.

No other effective action is possible without that foundation.

dvdnvwls
10-15-13, 06:07 PM
If I can't pay attention - then how come I can pay attention ?
The only problem here is that the name of ADHD is inaccurate and misleading. We all know that people with ADHD can pay attention, and that was never in dispute.

The rest of the post was just a smoke-and-mirrors act.

meadd823
10-16-13, 03:51 AM
Something about the dialogue occurring here made me think of an essay published in Shambhala Sun some years back. Perhaps it adds to the conversation...
The ninth-century Buddhist master Lin Chi is supposed to have said, “If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him.” Like much of Zen teaching, this seems too cute by half, but it makes a valuable point: to turn the Buddha into a religious fetish is to miss the essence of what he taught. In considering what Buddhism can offer the world in the twenty-first century, I propose that we take Lin Chi’s admonishment rather seriously. As students of the Buddha, we should dispense with Buddhism.

This is not to say that Buddhism has nothing to offer the world. One could surely argue that the Buddhist tradition, taken as a whole, represents the richest source of contemplative wisdom that any civilization has produced. In a world that has long been terrorized by fratricidal Sky-God religions, the ascendance of Buddhism (http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3407&Itemid=244) would surely be a welcome development. But this will not happen. There is no reason whatsoever to think that Buddhism can successfully compete with the relentless evangelizing of Christianity and Islam. Nor should it try to.
....
- continued (http://www.samharris.org/site/full_text/killing-the-buddha/#sthash.AFwLrtWV.dpuf)

Or view a .pdf copy of the original
Killing The Buddha (http://www.samharris.org/media/killing-the-buddha.pdf), Sam Harris, Shambhala Sun, March 2006.




My take on the entire article and yes I read the whole thing

It's BS written on the preconceived notion that any one should do the thinking for every one

Any one who thinks they should be thinking for any one besides themselves is delusional at best - . . . . What an insulting piece of rubbish this article turned out to be - My time spent reading it was saved from total uselessness by the irony of some one spewing dogma under the pretense of calling for the end of all dogma written by just another blockhead selling his over inflated opinion.


http://i153.photobucket.com/albums/s206/tlr823/my%20personal%20graphics/signaturefinaldraft1206injpeg.jpg




. . .

SB_UK
10-16-13, 07:34 AM
ADD would be better renamed attention dysregulation disorder, with the subtext to this description being that the ADD individual is unable to wilfully place his attention where it needs to be.

While the goal you describe is important- we have to attend to our duties close to home first.

Think globally act locally.

The most local action is action upon your own self designed to stabilise your own attention and emotional state.

No other effective action is possible without that foundation.


:-) What if thinking globaly isn't consistent with acting locally
- ie acting locally is logically inconsistent with thinking globally.

Or rather - we live in a logically inconsistent reality currently - and can bear a logically consistent mind (wisdom)
- and trying to pay attention to logically inconsistent behaviours results in our own minds short-circuiting.

It's a bit like telling a computer that x=2 and x=3 simultaneously and asking which single number x+x equals.

Smoke billows out of our exhaust vents.

sarek
10-16-13, 07:47 AM
:-) What if thinking globaly isn't consistent with acting locally
- ie acting locally is logically inconsistent with thinking globally.

Or rather - we live in a logically inconsistent reality currently - and can bear a logically consistent mind (wisdom)
- and trying to pay attention to logically inconsistent behaviours results in our own minds short-circuiting.

It's a bit like telling a computer that x=2 and x=3 simultaneously and asking which single number x+x equals.

Smoke billows out of our exhaust vents.

You will find that its not incompatible. Working on the local self has an effect on the level of being and level of understanding which in turn may modify the optimal course of action in a global perspective.

(a somewhat cryptic "in game" explanation for this is that the without is the within, and the above is the below. Every human is a microcosm of the whole and within us the cosmos is reflected)

Purely intellectual thinking is not the end all and be all of human thought. As far as one is able to reach a more instinctive/intuitive and wordless state of thought, apparent contradictions become less sharply defined.

Mindfulness and other self awareness methods teach us how to get in touch with that mode of thinking.

mattif
10-16-13, 02:27 PM
My take on the entire article... It's BS written on the preconceived notion that any one should do the thinking for every one

I understand that you did not like the essay, but beyond that, I have no idea what point you're trying to make... at least, not related to the essay. I'd appreciate if you could explain it to me.

Are you suggesting that Harris, the author, is proposing that a single person "should do the thinking for every one?" If so, can you please show me where he says this, or even hints at it? It's not something I've ever been aware of in this essay or in any of his other works, but perhaps you've found something crucial which I have overlooked.

Any one who thinks they should be thinking for any one besides themselves is delusional at bestI'm not even sure what you mean and/or what you think Harris means. What is this "thinking for [someone/everyone] else" which you keep mentioning? Where does this come from?

What an insulting piece of rubbish this article turned out to be (Admittedly, it's a slight Appeal to Authority, so disregard this point if you like, but...)
Not only was the essay published in a well-respected Buddhist magazine, but they actually republished it several years later in their "Best of the last 30 years" issue. I accept that that may mean nothing to you, but I still think it's worth mentioning that some people did not think it was rubbish, and that included many of the very people which the essay was criticizing/challenging.

From what little I've been able to gather, your offense appears to be primarily the result of your profound misunderstanding of the essay.

My time spent reading it was saved from total uselessness by the irony of some one spewing dogma under the pretense of calling for the end of all dogmaPlease point to this "dogma" which you claim Harris supports. Where is it? What is it?

Throwing around lots of insults and condemnations, without backing them up with some fairly strong evidence, is little more than intellectual cowardice.

written by just another blockhead selling his over inflated opinion. Ah, yes... more mudslinging. Suffice to say, I'm not impressed. And I'm very disappointed to see you casually throwing around insults which seek to denigrate someone's mental/intellectual capacity. And in this forum, no less!

But if you think he is a "blockhead" (i.e., stupid) you could at least explain your reasons for denigrating someone's intelligence.

Same goes for your claim that his opinion is "over inflated" [sic]. Do you mean to suggest that we should disregard his opinions because he is a successful author? Or because he has a degree in philosophy from Stanford? Is it the PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience from UCLA that really bothers you? Are you offended by his thousands of hours of meditation and silent retreats?

Like everyone, you're free to disagree with his opinions and mine. But instead of offering substantive criticisms, you're just being churlish.

So, please, show me where Harris gets it wrong... and where I get it wrong... or politely stfu&gfy. M'kay?

=====

PS: I recently came across this cute little graphic somewhere and I thought you might find it helpful for yourself.

http://i153.photobucket.com/albums/s206/tlr823/my%20personal%20graphics/paw.jpg

mattif
10-16-13, 04:28 PM
ADHD is simply attention trained on matters which deserve attention - and not the capacity to train attention on matters which don't.
How can any of us determine which is which (deserving or undeserving of our attention) unless we first give our attention to these matters? That to which we never attend is not merely unimportant, it is unknown. Which is to say that we are utterly ignorant of it.

If it doesn't matter - we shouldn't be able to concentrate on it
- to concentrate on that which is unimportant is true disorder.Again, the determination of un/importance of a thing necessarily requires directing some degree of attention upon that thing. And if we are, instead, unable to attend to it, then not only can we never make a determination as to its importance, but we can never even be aware of its existence.

ALL THAT MATTERS IS MASSIVE GLOBAL INFRASTRUCTURAL CHANGE - into one in which EQUALITY is a fixed attribute of (all of) man.You may be loudly yelling for Utopia, but massive global change leading to equality for all, however, could just as easily and plausibly be a state in which we all equally starved, burned, or otherwise lived in constant fear as we sprinted headlong towards terminal extinction. Not my idea of a good time.

I would argue, instead, that we should centrally be concerned with suffering. And for us, it is our attempts to minimize that suffering amongst all conscious creatures (not only humans).

And yet, from that premise, numerous questions logically arise:


What is suffering (or its converse, wellbeing)? Can / how do we define and identify it?
Where can we find it? How do we determine degrees and/or qualities of suffering?
Is it better to reduce a single instance of great suffering, or many instances of lesser suffering? Who is best to make such a determination, if it can be made at all?
Is it a selfish act to focus upon the reduction of one's own suffering, or is it a path by which we may make ourselves more effective in reducing the suffering of others? Who is the best to decide the answer to such a question... or even to decide whether there is an answer.
What if life, the universe, and everything is of such a complex nature as to often make it difficult to determine what manner and degree of action will maximally reduce suffering, or even whether an action might unexpectedly cause more suffering?
What shall we do in situations where either a possible or certain increase in suffering in the short-term appears likely to result in significant reduction in the long-term?

And finally, pulling this all back to the OT:
For myself, mindfulness is a step taken towards recognizing and reducing my own suffering, which reduces the suffering I cause to others, and hopefully helps me better recognize and reduce suffering elsewhere.

Kunga Dorji
10-17-13, 05:10 AM
My take on the entire article and yes I read the whole thing

It's BS written on the preconceived notion that any one should do the thinking for every one

Any one who thinks they should be thinking for any one besides themselves is delusional at best - . . . . What an insulting piece of rubbish this article turned out to be - My time spent reading it was saved from total uselessness by the irony of some one spewing dogma under the pretense of calling for the end of all dogma written by just another blockhead selling his over inflated opinion.


http://i153.photobucket.com/albums/s206/tlr823/my%20personal%20graphics/signaturefinaldraft1206injpeg.jpg




. . .

I suspect you are right.

Great emphasis is placed in Buddhism on
scholarship
logic
and lineage

People who have not been put to the test in debate with more experienced masters often come up with some funny ideas.

One of the key ideas behind "lineage" is that a recognised teacher has rubbed up against many other teachers and has had his reality tested by many challenges. (The Dalai Lama spends much time with Christian Mystics and Islamic Clerics)

If Sam were to dig a little deeper he would find the Dalai Lama saying that Buddhism is "not really classifiable as a religion".

However- religious trappings suit some- and those who enquire into the path of spiritual progress know that there are three main paths-- the path of the disciple (the conventional "religious" path) , the path of the sage and the path of the warrior.

I think it was kind of the Shambhala Sun to give Sam airspace- and maybe a good exercise for the minds of its more serious readership.

However, I know what I am doing when I practice formal Buddhist religious practices, and I know why I am doing them- even if they seem strange to the unlearned.

-- And yes-- Sam's intellectual arrogance sticks out like a male dog's reproductive appendages.

SB_UK
10-17-13, 06:21 AM
Simple question - how do you know if you're meditating or being mindful ?

Genuine question - I just don't know how I'd know.

I mean - you an concentrate on breath etc - but how do you know whilst doing it, if you're meditating ?

Simple answers desired.

So - with weight training - we can see larger muscles and the capacity to lift larger weights ... ...

SB_UK
10-17-13, 06:34 AM
Another point - I've just looked at how much meditation, mindfulness and yoga classes cost

- oh my word

- they're completely unaffordable.

Is there any chance that we're seeing much hype being piled on these techniques for all the wrong reasons ?

It just strikes me that anybody who'd have mastered these techniques properly - shouldn't be able to charge for them.

You guys kinda' know what my stance is on money
- and I'm guessing that the meditation/yoga master would need to think similarly ... ...

Otherwise people're just going through the motions of stretching (yoga), deep breathing and relaxation ... ...

SB_UK
10-17-13, 06:38 AM
What am I trying to suggest ?

That with enlightenment - the body tends towards meditation / yoga practices

- and not that meditation / yoga stretching leads to enlightenment.

Cart before the horse ?

Can meditation lead to enlightenment ?
Well - not if we're simply concentrating on breath.

We need to think to get to enloghtenment.

Aha! But won't concentrating on breath help the individual to pay attention, to concentrate - to get them thinking effectively - leading towards enlightenment.

Dunno - maybe.

-*-

What's the point you're making ?
That wisdom is all about deriving a mind which is globally logically consistent.

Best way to do that - is to think about stuff.
And science really does help to allow us to think about stuff.

Achieve enlightenment and experience tendency to meditation/yoga.

But - I think the order is important.

SB_UK
10-17-13, 06:45 AM
Why am I suggesting cart before the horse ?
Simply - let's imagine body scan meditation, breathing meditation, mantra meditation, counting meditation and stretching (standard yoga positions)

- well - if enlightenment is all about making the mind globally logically consistent
- then none of those practices will/can get you there.

Now - that's NOT to suggest that they're bad eg
YOGA -> great for posture (see Barliman for much more)
MEDITATION -> great for attention (see Barliman for much more)

but but but that's not enough.

You need to build and balance the (moral) mind ie to develop a mind which is a logically consistent specification of what's best for all people
ie a balanced systematizing/empathizing construct.

SB_UK
10-17-13, 06:47 AM
So - I'm suggesting that a personal enquiry into morality/natural science [empathizing/systematizing] will generate enlightenment which'll court an individual who is drawn towards meditation/mindfulness and yoga
- and not the other way around.

But that meditation/mindfulness and yoga aren't bad things to do - completely devoid of any moral / thinking aspect
- just 'cart' before 'horse'.

-*-

I'm offering a mind-centric view which offers the peculiar observation that it's not 'building' the mind - but building the mind to overcome the mind which is the purpose.

Upon enlightenment - the individual doesn't use their mind - they've pushed passed it

- Buddha just wasn't the talkative kind.

Why bother ?

The mind was there (to be completed) just to get him to a happy place (freedom from material attachment)
- all that's left for the old guy to do was sit in the sun and meditate.

He lived in a world where he could do all of that without having to pay.

SB_UK
10-17-13, 06:53 AM
You know -
you could easily see that
mind full ness
as synonymous with
mind completion transition

ie process to enlightenment, though the words could be made to mean not transition, but state post- also ... ...

If so - sure yoga and meditation 'd help - but they'll only help if post-gaining a grip on one's own mind
- one then uses it to structure itself
- leading to enlightenment

-- after which sure - the enlightened guy is free to do yoga and meditate all day.

In a sense - the questions dissipate from mind - and the individual is 'free' from the tyranny of his own mind.

Kunga Dorji
10-17-13, 07:47 AM
So - I'm suggesting that a personal enquiry into morality/natural science [empathizing/systematizing] will generate enlightenment which'll court an individual who is drawn towards meditation/mindfulness and yoga
- and not the other way around.

But that meditation/mindfulness and yoga aren't bad things to do - completely devoid of any moral / thinking aspect
- just 'cart' before 'horse'.

-*-

I'm offering a mind-centric view which offers the peculiar observation that it's not 'building' the mind - but building the mind to overcome the mind which is the purpose.

Upon enlightenment - the individual doesn't use their mind - they've pushed passed it

- Buddha just wasn't the talkative kind.

Why bother ?

The mind was there (to be completed) just to get him to a happy place (freedom from material attachment)
- all that's left for the old guy to do was sit in the sun and meditate.

He lived in a world where he could do all of that without having to pay.

Again- you operate on an incomplete understanding of the process.
Mindfulness-concentration, compassion, and wisdom are three aspects of the path that co-evolve.

The scattered, unmindful mind will never be effective enough to change anything more complex than its clothes.

Kunga Dorji
10-17-13, 07:50 AM
You will find that its not incompatible. Working on the local self has an effect on the level of being and level of understanding which in turn may modify the optimal course of action in a global perspective.

(a somewhat cryptic "in game" explanation for this is that the without is the within, and the above is the below. Every human is a microcosm of the whole and within us the cosmos is reflected)

Purely intellectual thinking is not the end all and be all of human thought. As far as one is able to reach a more instinctive/intuitive and wordless state of thought, apparent contradictions become less sharply defined.

Mindfulness and other self awareness methods teach us how to get in touch with that mode of thinking.
The positive effects of mindful behaviour ripple outwards from thelocus of our temporal selves.

As more of us master this- we establish a standing wave that will change everything forever.

Kunga Dorji
10-17-13, 07:53 AM
Simple question - how do you know if you're meditating or being mindful ?

Genuine question - I just don't know how I'd know.

I mean - you an concentrate on breath etc - but how do you know whilst doing it, if you're meditating ?

Simple answers desired.

So - with weight training - we can see larger muscles and the capacity to lift larger weights ... ...

Practice, and more practice.

Kunga Dorji
10-17-13, 07:57 AM
Another point - I've just looked at how much meditation, mindfulness and yoga classes cost

- oh my word

- they're completely unaffordable.

Is there any chance that we're seeing much hype being piled on these techniques for all the wrong reasons ?

It just strikes me that anybody who'd have mastered these techniques properly - shouldn't be able to charge for them.

You guys kinda' know what my stance is on money
- and I'm guessing that the meditation/yoga master would need to think similarly ... ...

Otherwise people're just going through the motions of stretching (yoga), deep breathing and relaxation ... ...

They cost nothing.
All the instructions are available for free on audiodharma.org

However- people have to eat.

This is the Buddha's view on prosperity:
he was FOR it- if well used.
http://www.budsas.org/ebud/ebdha049.htm

Why is your view more persuasive?
Or is it just a specialised form of obsession?

SB_UK
10-17-13, 03:22 PM
Mindfulness Stress Reduction And Healing https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rSU8ftmmhmw

Global societal change is a better approach.

SB_UK
10-17-13, 03:39 PM
Or is it just a specialised form of obsession?

Was Buddha's drive not to kill passers-by an obsession ?
I guess he'd have had to kill a couple of people to avoid the label ?

dvdnvwls
10-17-13, 05:37 PM
Was Buddha's drive not to kill passers-by an obsession ?
I guess he'd have had to kill a couple of people to avoid the label ?
I don't believe there can be a drive to not [anything]. False analogy anyway.

mattif
10-17-13, 05:49 PM
...in Buddhism.... People who have not been put to the test in debate with more experienced masters often come up with some funny ideas.

If you're referring to Harris, then you appear to making some rather glaring, unfounded assumptions. But perhaps you have some additional information you've left unsaid?

And your claim about Harris having "funny ideas"... is this your judgment as a "more experienced master?" Unless you are, then your own standards (certainly, not mine) would seem to suggest that you are unqualified to make such judgment. Or do your own stated standards magically not apply to you?

Is there any chance that instead of tossing around empty, useless criticisms which fail to address even a single point, that maybe you could bother to put forth some direct, substantive responses? I don't know... something worthy of a claim to "logic and scholarship," perhaps?

One of the key ideas behind "lineage" is that a recognised teacher has rubbed up against many other teachers and has had his reality tested by many challenges. (The Dalai Lama spends much time with Christian Mystics and Islamic Clerics)And how would that possibly make one's ideas and beliefs any more or less true, in any way whatsoever? If Buddhist ideas gain validity merely by their holders spending time with Christians and Muslims, then it must be equally true that the Christian and Muslim ideas have also gained validity in that same transactional process.

If you and I discuss and debate as to whether the Moon's green cheese (which, as we both know, comprises its principal substance), tastes more like Roquefort or Stilton, then at the end of the day how well has our reality really been tested?


If Sam were to dig a little deeper he would find the Dalai Lama saying that Buddhism is "not really classifiable as a religion".Apparently, you didn't bother to read the essay. How very typical.

Regardless of that particular failing, the obvious question in response would be: When trying to determine factual truths about a not-really religion, is it typical for you to uncritically accept the statements of its leader? Or should we perhaps be a bit more logical and scholarly about the whole thing?

However- religious trappings suit some- and those who enquire into the path of spiritual progress know that there are three main paths-- the path of the disciple (the conventional "religious" path) , the path of the sage and the path of the warrior.So, you're saying that it's not a religion, but it has trappings of religion, and many followers treat it as a religion (thus, in fact, making it their religion)... but it's not a religion? W'ev.

As for "the paths", the real truth is that there aren't three of them. This is a misperception caused by one's lowly, limited perspective which prevents seeing the larger picture. From an elevated viewpoint, what appeared to be three paths, turns out, instead, to be but one path which has three meandering ruts within it. The ruts are the result of cheap, inferior materials and shoddy workmanship. :giggle:

I think it was kind of the Shambhala Sun to give Sam airspace I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you didn't intend to be elitist and patronizing with this statement.


and maybe a good exercise for the minds of its more serious readership.Since you've made it clear that you didn't read it, I must conclude that you are less serious and, perhaps, not up to the task of some "good exercise."


However, I know what I am doing when I practice formal Buddhist religious practices, and I know why I am doing them- even if they seem strange to the unlearned.Billions of people would likely claim to know what they are doing, and why, regarding their particular religious practices. Does that make their claims true? Of course not -- it tells nothing other than that the person outwardly claims to understand what they are doing and why they are doing it. They might be mistaken about those claims. Or they might be lying in order to avoid the embarrassment they would feel if they admitted their lack of knowledge. Or they might be lying because they felt that an admission of their own lack of knowledge about the practices would mean (or at least, be perceived to mean) that they didn't really believe in the religion, itself.

Nor do their claims make their underlying beliefs true.


I practice formal Buddhist religious practicesHow does one learn and practice the FORMAL RELIGIOUS practices of a belief system whose own spiritual leader claims is "not really classifiable as a religion?" Is this some sort of koan?

even if they [formal Buddhist religious practices] seem strange to the unlearnedWho are these unnamed unlearned to which you refer? You, of course, can't mean Harris, since you know virtually nothing about him (and if you did, you wouldn't make the claim).

And yes-- Sam's intellectual arrogance sticks out like a male dog's reproductive appendages.And yes, your pathetic and prudishly vulgar ad hominem attack serves as an excellent barometer of your degree of logic, compassion, scholarship... and personal integrity.

I look forward to your detached, logical, scholarly rebuttal -- in much the same way that I look forward to winning the lottery.

Kunga Dorji
10-17-13, 08:42 PM
If you're referring to Harris, then you appear to making some rather glaring, unfounded assumptions. But perhaps you have some additional information you've left unsaid?

And your claim about Harris having "funny ideas"... is this your judgment as a "more experienced master?" Unless you are, then your own standards (certainly, not mine) would seem to suggest that you are unqualified to make such judgment. Or do your own stated standards magically not apply to you?

Actually I was more or less quoting the Dalai Lama on the controversy created by a small breakaway group who claim the right to be the true representatives of Tibetan Buddhism and noisily picket many of his public appearances.
They are a group who claim exclusive right.
They are not primarily my standards, but yes, I have observed that the habit of cross referencing and looking for commonality is the best way to proceed.

Harris can be pretty attacking and as a Westerner trained in a Western University (and especially a Western Medical School)- the taint of that old habit still clings somewhat to me.

However- let's deconstrcut the article- as this is a good exercise.

The opening lines:
(Summary by the interviewer)
“Kill the Buddha,” says the old koan. “Kill Buddhism,” says Sam Harris, author of The End of Faith, who argues
that Buddhism’s philosophy, insight, and practices would benefit more people if they were not presented as a religion.


The idea that there is a single monolithic Buddhism that decides how to preset itself (as per the Vatican or the Archbishop of Canterbury) is a fallacy projected by Westerners who are used to that way of thinking.

Secondly- mindfulness has been taken from Buddhism and re- presented as a psychological tool by psychologists who are virtually all practicing Buddhists, and were virtually all members of the hippie movement.

So his first point is demonstrably wrong.


And how would that possibly make one's ideas and beliefs any more or less true, in any way whatsoever? If Buddhist ideas gain validity merely by their holders spending time with Christians and Muslims, then it must be equally true that the Christian and Muslim ideas have also gained validity in that same transactional process.

You would benefit greatly from reading Aldous Huxley's
The Perennial Philosophy" here- but the points of commonality here are enormous- and they help us do a reality check.


IE If I walk down the road and see a pink elephant or hear a voice in my head telling me to kill someone, then the process of cross checking that idea with other passers by might just convince me that there was reason to question the validity of my own observations.

As a small example-- one of the quotes I heard at The Dalai Lama's last speeches was of a conversation with an elderly Islamic cleric who said that the common understanding of Jihad amongst Islamic terrorists was wrong:

that it actually means the fight against one's negative emotions".


So, you're saying that it's not a religion, but it has trappings of religion, and many followers treat it as a religion (thus, in fact, making it their religion)... but it's not a religion? W'ev.


It is what you make of it.
I regard the path as the Applied Psychology of universal happiness.
I follow some of the religious trappings because
1) It is a sign of respect to my teacher- and the respect granted him helps him manifest his great qualities.
2) Some of the techniques are extraordinarily powerful mnemonic and mind calming devices.
3) They are beautiful in themselves, and going through the process elicits a conditioned reflex that allows me to meditate more effectively.

There are also people wo work very hard, and have low levels of literacy, and follow it as a religion because that path suits them.

However, again, Harris makes the fallacious assumption that there is aunified Buddhism that will fall lockstep into the command of one leader or leadership group.

This is a critical misunderstanding in view of the Buddha's own exhortation that we accept nothing that does not fit in with our own reality testing.




I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you didn't intend to be elitist and patronizing with this statement.


Thankyou- I did not- but my phrasing may have arisen in dependence upon the elitist attitude that I have always reacted to in Harris, Dawkins, and Onfrey (who I class as fundamentalist atheists). I have no enthusiasm for atheism.


Since you've made it clear that you didn't read it, I must conclude that you are less serious and, perhaps, not up to the task of some "good exercise."


Well I did skim it last night before responding-- but let me continue with quoting from it:

Worse still, the continued identification
of Buddhists with Buddhism lends
tacit support to the religious differences
in our world.

Maybe you are unaware of the ongoing discussion in Buddhism/Taoism/Zen about the distorting nature of words (the map is not the territory in NLP terms).
There are many serious discussions in Buddhist circles along the idea that there is an inherent elitism in describing ourselves as Buddhist, Male, American or whatever, as well as an inherent obscuration of the nature of reality.

As for people in traditional cultures who practice Buddhism in traditional ways-- who is Sam to criticise them for their choices, just because they do not suit his ends? That is arrogant.

I will respond to the rest ofthe article later- but my last comment was a joke-- and as a result of our convict heritage, us Australians have a penchant for obsceneity.

I am sorry it was not amusing.

Please wait of r part 2-- ad buy that lottery ticket :)

Kunga Dorji
10-17-13, 10:45 PM
Actually I was more or less quoting the Dalai Lama on the controversy created by a small breakaway group who claim the right to be the true representatives of Tibetan Buddhism and noisily picket many of his public appearances.
They are a group who claim exclusive right.
They are not primarily my standards, but yes, I have observed that the habit of cross referencing and looking for commonality is the best way to proceed.

Harris can be pretty attacking and as a Westerner trained in a Western University (and especially a Western Medical School)- the taint of that old habit still clings somewhat to me.

However- let's deconstrcut the article- as this is a good exercise.

The opening lines:


The idea that there is a single monolithic Buddhism that decides how to preset itself (as per the Vatican or the Archbishop of Canterbury) is a fallacy projected by Westerners who are used to that way of thinking.

Secondly- mindfulness has been taken from Buddhism and re- presented as a psychological tool by psychologists who are virtually all practicing Buddhists, and were virtually all members of the hippie movement.

So his first point is demonstrably wrong.


You would benefit greatly from reading Aldous Huxley's
The Perennial Philosophy" here- but the points of commonality here are enormous- and they help us do a reality check.


IE If I walk down the road and see a pink elephant or hear a voice in my head telling me to kill someone, then the process of cross checking that idea with other passers by might just convince me that there was reason to question the validity of my own observations.

As a small example-- one of the quotes I heard at The Dalai Lama's last speeches was of a conversation with an elderly Islamic cleric who said that the common understanding of Jihad amongst Islamic terrorists was wrong:

that it actually means the fight against one's negative emotions".



It is what you make of it.
I regard the path as the Applied Psychology of universal happiness.
I follow some of the religious trappings because
1) It is a sign of respect to my teacher- and the respect granted him helps him manifest his great qualities.
2) Some of the techniques are extraordinarily powerful mnemonic and mind calming devices.
3) They are beautiful in themselves, and going through the process elicits a conditioned reflex that allows me to meditate more effectively.

There are also people wo work very hard, and have low levels of literacy, and follow it as a religion because that path suits them.

However, again, Harris makes the fallacious assumption that there is aunified Buddhism that will fall lockstep into the command of one leader or leadership group.

This is a critical misunderstanding in view of the Buddha's own exhortation that we accept nothing that does not fit in with our own reality testing.





Thankyou- I did not- but my phrasing may have arisen in dependence upon the elitist attitude that I have always reacted to in Harris, Dawkins, and Onfrey (who I class as fundamentalist atheists). I have no enthusiasm for atheism.



Well I did skim it last night before responding-- but let me continue with quoting from it:


Maybe you are unaware of the ongoing discussion in Buddhism/Taoism/Zen about the distorting nature of words (the map is not the territory in NLP terms).
There are many serious discussions in Buddhist circles along the idea that there is an inherent elitism in describing ourselves as Buddhist, Male, American or whatever, as well as an inherent obscuration of the nature of reality.

As for people in traditional cultures who practice Buddhism in traditional ways-- who is Sam to criticise them for their choices, just because they do not suit his ends? That is arrogant.

I will respond to the rest ofthe article later- but my last comment was a joke-- and as a result of our convict heritage, us Australians have a penchant for obsceneity.

I am sorry it was not amusing.

Please wait of r part 2-- ad buy that lottery ticket :)

so to continue:

Worse still, the continued identification
of Buddhists with Buddhism lends
tacit support to the religious differences
in our world.

This point has already been covered. It is a shame that he is so out of touch with what is going on within the Buddhist and interfaith models.

Very specifically, the point of Buddhism is to render itself redundant-and that was stated by the Buddha.



This spirit of empiricism
animates Buddhism to a unique degree. For
this reason, the methodology of Buddhism,
if shorn of its religious encumbrances, could
be one of our greatest resources as we struggle
to develop our scientific understanding
of human subjectivity.


I am pleased to see him acknowledge this, but remain concerned that it is incompatible with his overall thesis

However, I remain concerned at his use of global terms like "religion" to cluster a huge range of disparate phenomena, and to imply "guilt by association".

Harris asserts

It seems profoundly unlikely that we
will heal the divisions in our world simply
by multiplying the occasions for interfaith
dialogue.


In making this assertion he demonstrates an ignorance of the ample scholarship that demonstrates that the core mystical traditions of all the major religions are virtually identical, and that careful and positive interfaith inquiry is exposing this- even as we speak.

One quote that stands out for me is that

The Purpose of Religion is to allow the more complete/ efficient expression of Love.

That one came, I believe from a discussion between the Dalai Lama and the Christian mystic Thomas Merton.


f the methodology of Buddhism (ethical
precepts and meditation) uncovers genuine
truths about the mind and the phenomenal
world—truths like emptiness, selflessness,
and impermanence—these truths are not in
the least “Buddhist.” No doubt, most serious
practitioners of meditation realize this, but
most Buddhists do not.


There are two points of relevance here- the refinement of contemplative science and its marriage with neuroscience has been driven by the Mind Life Conferences that were set up by the Dalai Lama, and many of the key scientists involved ( ie Paul Ekman, Richard Davidson) have spent much time working with him and recruiting his help.

There is a new "scientific Buddhism" evolving which is quite different from cultural forms of Buddhism and from the aping of cultural forms by some older Western Recruits to Buddhism.

How Harris dares to presume to speak for "most Buddhists" I do not know.

What Harris has completely missed is that the methods of inquiry of contemplative science have been preserved by those "ignorant traditional Buddhists" who have kept going to the temples, and feeding the monks who do the scholarship and have kept those techniques alive all this time.

We all owe them a debt of gratitude for doing this- because the movement of contemplative science is now irreversably changing our world for the better.

The Buddhism that Harris sees as standing in the way of progress is a phantom of his own imagining.

I am sure I know where it came from and why he has such antipathy to religious form-- my own upbringing in an Anglican school, and the difficulties I had with the ideas that were being forced on me for many years left me very bitterly anti-religious for many years.

I rather suspect that his thinking comes from the same direction.

I hope this does not get deleted- as it is a good analysis of a reasonable question.
The main reason I hesitated in replying at more length yesterday (other than tiredness) was a degree of concern about forum guidelines on posts relating to religion.

SB_UK
10-18-13, 04:23 AM
I don't believe there can be a drive to not [anything]. False analogy anyway.

To be still, to move - could or could not be seen to the contrary.

dvdnvwls
10-18-13, 04:36 AM
To be still, to move - could or could not be seen to the contrary.
What do you mean?

Kunga Dorji
10-18-13, 05:10 AM
My take on the entire article and yes I read the whole thing

It's BS written on the preconceived notion that any one should do the thinking for every one


. . .
As you can see- I just took a much longer time to say the same as you.

Yes, I do agree that Harris comes across as an elitist who thinks he has the right to think for everyone.

I simply have not been able to locate anything in his writings (and I have covered some ground there) to persuade me otherwise.

I rather think that the "Shambhala Sun" let him have just enough rope to hang himself.

Kunga Dorji
10-18-13, 05:18 AM
Something about the dialogue occurring here made me think of an essay published in Shambhala Sun some years back. Perhaps it adds to the conversation...
The ninth-century Buddhist master Lin Chi is supposed to have said, “If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him.” Like much of Zen teaching, this seems too cute by half, but it makes a valuable point: to turn the Buddha into a religious fetish is to miss the essence of what he taught. In considering what Buddhism can offer the world in the twenty-first century, I propose that we take Lin Chi’s admonishment rather seriously. As students of the Buddha, we should dispense with Buddhism.

This is not to say that Buddhism has nothing to offer the world. One could surely argue that the Buddhist tradition, taken as a whole, represents the richest source of contemplative wisdom that any civilization has produced. In a world that has long been terrorized by fratricidal Sky-God religions, the ascendance of Buddhism (http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3407&Itemid=244) would surely be a welcome development. But this will not happen. There is no reason whatsoever to think that Buddhism can successfully compete with the relentless evangelizing of Christianity and Islam. Nor should it try to.
....
- continued (http://www.samharris.org/site/full_text/killing-the-buddha/#sthash.AFwLrtWV.dpuf)

Or view a .pdf copy of the original
Killing The Buddha (http://www.samharris.org/media/killing-the-buddha.pdf), Sam Harris, Shambhala Sun, March 2006.



The real trick is to realise that Buddhism is a technique- a method of inquiry.
Thoroughly pursued it leaves no wiggle room for intellectual dishonesty or laziness.

Not every Buddhist in the world has time for that- so they do what they can.
In the West we have leisure and opportunity.
We have (if we can tear our eyes away from the TV) an enormous "Cognitive Surplus".

There is a figure kicking round in my head that the entire time taken to construct Wikipedia is about the same as that which would be saved if every American simply avoided watch in one advertisement a day!

So Harris is being very consdescending if he does not realise that the life of toil lived by many Buddhists does not leave them the time to fully pursue the path themselves.

SB_UK
10-18-13, 05:26 AM
What do you mean?

But of course that's true, or is it somehow possible that it/that might not be the case ?

dvdnvwls
10-18-13, 08:26 AM
But of course that's true, or is it somehow possible that it/that might not be the case ?
Of course what is true? You seem to be affirming my point and rejecting your own.

SB_UK
10-18-13, 09:27 AM
Of course what is true? You seem to be affirming my point and rejecting your own.

But if that were true - why would you keep on insisting that the opposite is possible ?

SB_UK
10-18-13, 01:49 PM
So Harris is

just being challenging so others are forced to make logical arguments to uphold their Gods - and in the process *understand* them.

SB_UK
10-18-13, 01:50 PM
Of course what is true? You seem to be affirming my point and rejecting your own.

I'm not too sure why it isn't obvious - but if you need me to repeat it again, yes - it is true, but not absolutely necessary that you agree - since chances are that your agreement/disagreement will reflect different stances.

SB_UK
10-18-13, 01:58 PM
just being challenging so others are forced to make logical arguments to uphold their Gods - and in the process *understand* them.

principle of catholic confessional

-- but made both these points many times before.

SB_UK
10-18-13, 02:16 PM
REMINDER OF SUBJECT OF THREAD.


Haven't been able to find an explanation of meditation/mindfulness which resonates.



Anybody with a definition which'll mean something ?

Apparently mindfulness is something to do with being present ?? or non-judgmental ?? or -well
- lots of definitions - none of which make much sense.

Apparently you have to do it to understand :-) but there's no way of knowing what to do / if you're doing it right
- and so ... ...

The entire subject may be complete nonsense.

SB_UK
10-18-13, 02:26 PM
That article:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/wellbeing/9772911/Nows-the-moment-for-mindfulness.html

Fair enough - mechanical technique which helps us to stop thinking about things which drive psychological stress.

Sounds good - there's a MUCH MUCH MUCH better way of eliminating stress though.

SB_UK
10-18-13, 02:49 PM
Sounds good - there's a MUCH MUCH MUCH better way of eliminating stress though.

Advances in neuroscience and psychology in relation to depression over the past 15 years have coincided with the current economic situation, which has made the condition more prevalent, and mindfulness is a solution that is emerging at just the right time,

kill money, jettison mindfulness
- or apply it ? if you can be bothered.

SB_UK
10-18-13, 02:52 PM
love/desire of money = root of all evil
lose root of all evil = lose motivation for money

work ok - in the absence of money

dvdnvwls
10-18-13, 04:43 PM
But if that were true - why would you keep on insisting that the opposite is possible ?
If you don't want to discuss things, I suggest you get off of discussion boards.

Kunga Dorji
10-18-13, 07:40 PM
just being challenging so others are forced to make logical arguments to uphold their Gods - and in the process *understand* them.

Maybe playing the role of "Lucifer"- (the light bearer) to borrow from a cultural archetype that most would understand! :)

Kunga Dorji
10-18-13, 07:45 PM
kill money, jettison mindfulness
- or apply it ? if you can be bothered.


You are running the argument at much too high a level.

The purpose of mindfulness as applied in its original context is to alleviate suffering.

Done well, it certainly does that, it makes it easier for us as individuals to handle inevitable stressors associated with the impermanence of life, and it helps us to be more kind and helpful to others (though that is a process that has its ups and downs with ongoing experience- it is not a linear improvement with no setbacks).

So- for me-- the original purpose is sufficient and, in fact the end becomes the means (and vice versa- as that distinction is also artificial).

Kunga Dorji
10-18-13, 07:52 PM
REMINDER OF SUBJECT OF THREAD.




Anybody with a definition which'll mean something ?

Apparently mindfulness is something to do with being present ?? or non-judgmental ?? or -well
- lots of definitions - none of which make much sense.

Apparently you have to do it to understand :-) but there's no way of knowing what to do / if you're doing it right
- and so ... ...

The entire subject may be complete nonsense.


Try this one:
Meditation means "Observing the movements of mind's attention in order to see clearly how everything actually works".

Meditation develops specific skills- fluidity and acuity of attention, analytic skills, close observation of cause and effect, and an understanding of the way our misattributions of cause and effect cause us to react in unskilful ways that harm our cause,,not help it.Higehr level training involves cultivation of compassionate mind states and behaviours.

Within the Buddhist context it also involves using these skills to explore and test some elements of theory proposed by the Buddha, and see if they work.


and
Mindfulness means "remembering to keep that observation going all the time and to remember what to do when mind's attention is pulled away from a task in life or in meditation where it is pulled off an object of meditation

The issue of "non judgmental awareness" simply means observing the whole situation- including the bits that we do not like- ie our own bad behaviour, and the things we are led to believe by "intellectual authorities" are not possible.

Kunga Dorji
10-19-13, 12:58 AM
Something about the dialogue occurring here made me think of an essay published in Shambhala Sun some years back. Perhaps it adds to the conversation...
The ninth-century Buddhist master Lin Chi is supposed to have said, “If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him.” Like much of Zen teaching, this seems too cute by half, but it makes a valuable point: to turn the Buddha into a religious fetish is to miss the essence of what he taught. In considering what Buddhism can offer the world in the twenty-first century, I propose that we take Lin Chi’s admonishment rather seriously. As students of the Buddha, we should dispense with Buddhism.

This is not to say that Buddhism has nothing to offer the world. One could surely argue that the Buddhist tradition, taken as a whole, represents the richest source of contemplative wisdom that any civilization has produced. In a world that has long been terrorized by fratricidal Sky-God religions, the ascendance of Buddhism (http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=3407&Itemid=244) would surely be a welcome development. But this will not happen. There is no reason whatsoever to think that Buddhism can successfully compete with the relentless evangelizing of Christianity and Islam. Nor should it try to.
....
- continued (http://www.samharris.org/site/full_text/killing-the-buddha/#sthash.AFwLrtWV.dpuf)

Or view a .pdf copy of the original
Killing The Buddha (http://www.samharris.org/media/killing-the-buddha.pdf), Sam Harris, Shambhala Sun, March 2006.



As chance would have it I randomly opened a book by John Kabat Zinn on MBSR- mindfulness based stress reduction, and came up with the following series of points that effectively refute Sam Harris' position:

1) All the mindfulness based therapies such as MBSR, MCBT, MiCBT and ACT, do, in fact derive directly from the original Pali Canon- the original instructions on mindfulness as taught by the Buddha. [it is worth noting that for the purposes of therapy, references to anything that could be interpreted as religion have been extracted from the therapies-- though the bases of these techniques are usually taught to the practitioners and teachers of these techniques.

2) The terms Buddhism and Buddhists were invented by Western Ethologists in the 17th and 18th centuries, and are not descriptions applied by "Buddhists" to themselves.

3) The monastic traditions of the East have preserved and developed the techniques of mindfulness, and without that work having been done (by people who were prepared to live a rather frugal life) we would not have access to these techniques.

4) It is usual in Scholarly work to acknowledge sources.

5) It is considered good manners in polite human society to express gratitude for gifts of value.

6) The Buddha's teachings (dharma) are fundamentally about non duality- so by definition any distinction between Buddhist and non Buddhist is artificial, and this is well recognised within Buddhism. (The "If you meet the Buddha in the Road" is a poetic expression of one aspect of non-duality).

7) The Buddha outlined his exposition of dharma as a sort of "natural law" that can be exposed by careful self observation and self inquiry. As it is a sort of natural law, it cannot be described as Buddhist any more than the law of gravity is English because it was discovered by Newton or the laws of thermodynamics are Austrian because they were discovered by Boltzmann.
By definition the Buddha's elaboration of the lawfulness of dharma transcends any culture and religion.


Mindfulness and dharma are best thought of as universal descriptions of the functioning of the human mind regarding the quality of one's attention in relation to the experience of suffering and the potential for happiness. They apply equally wherever there are human minds, just as the laws of physics apply equally everywhere in the universe (as far as we know), or Noam Chomsky's universal generative grammar is applicable across all languages in the elaboration of human speech.

ref Kabat Zinn J.
Coming To our Senses pp136-7 Hyperion Books Copyright 2005

So, taking all this into account, I am genuinely confused as to what Harris is fighting against here.

I'm not trying to be clever here, or to "beat anyone"- just trying to produce a small item of good scholarship, and elucidate a point of confusion and contention.

I for one remain well aware that if I see anything of value, it comes about because I am standing on the shoulders of giants.

ana futura
10-19-13, 01:15 AM
I also have some "issues" with Buddhism, but I find that Lorin Roche does a really good job of addressing my own qualms.

http://www.lorinroche.com/dangers/homeless.html

The "problem" with anything, religion or ???, is when it becomes dogmatic (even science!).

There are dogmatic branches of Buddhism. There are gurus who are too good at being gurus, at the expense of their students. But, that's not the whole of Buddhism- that's not the whole of anything

Roche is a little "out there", but when I read this piece, really, it's exactly what I needed to read at the time. I'm not sure if he's right about everything in it (especially regarding "styles" of meditation), but he brings up so many good points that it doesn't matter.

In the west we have the luxury of picking and choosing and building new things from the old, and if we are granted that opportunity, those of us that are interested should go for it.

ana futura
10-19-13, 01:18 AM
Also SB, this is a really good collection of meditation research- http://www.lorinroche.com/benefits/overview.html

ana futura
10-19-13, 01:22 AM
Also this piece by Rev. James Ishmael Ford is excellent-
http://www.boundlesswayzen.org/teishos/libbudteisho.html

In this book Stephen asserted "The idea of rebirth is meaningful in religious Buddhism only insofar as it provides a vehicle for the key Indian metaphysical doctrine of actions and their results known as ‘karma.’ While the Buddha accepted the idea of karma as he accepted that of rebirth, when questioned on the issue he tended to emphasize its psychological rather than its cosmological implications."

As he developed this argument Stephen was presenting a modern, rational and secular vision of Buddhist teachings. A detailed consideration of Stephen’s particular understanding of the Dharma lies beyond the scope of this reflection. But he is one of the first to systematically present perspectives held, often unconsciously, by many, possibly most contemporary western Buddhists.

What we find here, I suggest, is the meeting of east and west, of our underlying western rational and humanistic perspectives encountering the Dharma, challenging, being challenged and ultimately synthesizing into a new Buddhism. As one begins to look closely it becomes very hard to ignore the many assumptions held by the majority of western Buddhists that are different, sometimes by shades, sometimes radically, than those held by what might be called traditional Buddhists.

Maybe this can be framed more helpfully by saying there is a new Buddhism emerging, a Buddhism quite different from the traditional Buddhisms of east and south Asia. These shifts in assumption are as substantive as were those of Nagarjuna from what was taught before him, and many of these shifts are of great value. As such, they deserve to be noticed.

The assumptions of this new Buddhism are so pervasive among western Buddhists and among popular western Buddhist writers in particular, it is actually possible to not notice. And, of course, what we don’t notice about ourselves is the most dangerous part of who we are. It can be profoundly misleading when, as is often the case in western Buddhist - and especially within the western Zen communities to which I belong- the claim is that one is transmitting an a-historical path, the once and future way of awakening, unchanged from when the teachings were first delivered from the mouth of the Buddha himself.

Donald Lopez, in his preface to A Modern Buddhist Bible: Essential Readings from East and West observes the seduction for new movements seeing themselves as a return to the pure ways of the traditions and the original teachers. This has been the case for many who hold contemporary Buddhist views, seeing themselves, truthfully ourselves, as returning to an original Buddhism and its tenants. For instance our appeal to the summation of the Four Noble truths, which like many other contemporary commentators I’ve used as a foundational statement of what Buddhism teaches, is in fact something of an innovation--not an emphasis commonly found in the teachings of traditional Buddhists.

SB- Ford also offers this "definition" of Budhhism. One of the first truly important books to rise out of the liberal Buddhist movement is Ken Jones’s The New Social Face of Buddhism: A Call to Action. In traditional Buddhist schools the focus, as Stephen Batchelor implied in a somewhat different context, is essentially psychological. Classically, Buddhism is an examination of the human mind: how it works, what happens, and how to deal with it. Ken takes this foundational work of the Buddha, Nagarjuna, and all who followed, and pushes their insights. Out of that, he demonstrates the most significant aspect of a liberal Buddhism

Early on in his book Ken offers up the image of Indra’s Net, derived from the Avatamsaka Sutra, the core text of the Hua-yen school of Chinese Buddhism. Here we find the image of an infinite net that has an infinitely faceted jewel at each intersection of its infinite threads. With a single flash of light we have the whole of creation bursting forth. Within this image we find a reality where each jewel exists only as a reflection of the other jewels. And at the same time each of these individual jewels is the support of all the other jewels. None has a separate existence from all the others; each exists only within a realm of mutuality.

Ken takes this image and that of the Bodhisattva, the "enlightening-being" at the heart of the Mahayana way, and suggests there is a social ethic implicit within these images. He strives to make this insight explicit, something that characterizes much of liberal Buddhism. So we might begin to notice the assertion our egos, our sense of self is in fact a construction is also a suggestion that society itself is a construction. But rather than follow the analysis of Karl Marx or his opponents in considering this social construction, Ken draws upon the way of the Buddha and particularly the emphasis of Zen.



To me, that is what all of it is all about- meditation, mindfulness, Buddhism, psychology. Everything else is icing on the cake. This is why I say words like "enlightenment" are meaningless to me. If that word does not help me understand my mind better, understand the nature of society better, (and at the moment it does not, it only hinders), it's not where my attention should be.

SB_UK
10-19-13, 02:56 AM
If you don't want to discuss things, I suggest you get off of discussion boards.

Is that to be taken as agreement or disagreement RE:the original apparent point of contention ? I think you're agreeing - but am not sure whether you've managed to work through the issues yourself - at least judging by the seemingly gaping holes left in your position. Of course, I could be wrong - but will need some evidence to alter my position on your stance.

SB_UK
10-19-13, 03:11 AM
If you don't want to discuss things, I suggest you get off of discussion boards.


Great point by the way !

dvdnvwls
10-19-13, 03:35 AM
This is a false and dangerous assumption. Changing societal infrastructure can be a major detriment. Stalin honed his attention and aimed it at changing societal infrastructure, and his success was horrendous.


The change has to be in logically consistent with all of species benefit.


And Stalin knew that his change was indeed logically consistent with all of species benefit. That's the point: no one can determine whether the change he desires is logically consistent with all of species benefit. Especially not Stalin, and especially not you. (Especially not me either, but I wasn't claiming I could, while both of you were.)

Kunga Dorji
10-19-13, 06:47 AM
I also have some "issues" with Buddhism, but I find that Lorin Roche does a really good job of addressing my own qualms.

http://www.lorinroche.com/dangers/homeless.html

The "problem" with anything, religion or ???, is when it becomes dogmatic (even science!).

There are dogmatic branches of Buddhism. There are gurus who are too good at being gurus, at the expense of their students. But, that's not the whole of Buddhism- that's not the whole of anything

Roche is a little "out there", but when I read this piece, really, it's exactly what I needed to read at the time. I'm not sure if he's right about everything in it (especially regarding "styles" of meditation), but he brings up so many good points that it doesn't matter.

In the west we have the luxury of picking and choosing and building new things from the old, and if we are granted that opportunity, those of us that are interested should go for it.

Dogmatism in this particular area is a symptom of incomplete understanding.

It is a little hard to answer this properly without going into the detail that surely must cross the line of what can be discussed on this forum without overtly breaking the "rules"-- but it is in Wikipedia so I guess it is fair to comment on it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kalama_Sutta

If in doubt- the oldest references are usually the clearest ones here.

So this particular discourse listed
named ten specific sources which knowledge should not be immediately viewed as truthful without further investigation to avoid fallacies:

Oral History
Tradition
News Sources
Scriptures or other official texts
Suppositional reasoning
Philosophical dogmatism
Common Sense
One's own opinions
Experts
Authorities or ones own teacher.
The argument that was put was that we should each use our own judgement, and see for ourselves whether a particular suggestion or ideaa increased human happiness or decreased it.

This was probably the single most complete and radical exposition of the rights and responsibilities of the individual for their own well being and that of those around them that has ever been made in human history.

All of our society is based on Hierarchy, and on the idea of argument by authority.

Virtually every thread on the scientific section of this forum relies more on reference to authority than to our right to our own experience.

Interestingly Ana, the comments of yours that I am responding to clearly indicate that you have perfect understanding of this concept.

SB_UK
10-19-13, 07:00 AM
And Stalin knew that his change was indeed logically consistent with all of species benefit. That's the point: no one can determine whether the change he desires is logically consistent with all of species benefit. Especially not Stalin, and especially not you. (Especially not me either, but I wasn't claiming I could, while both of you were.)

That was of course what was said - but you'll realise *not* - what was meant.
If you'd read between the lines - you'll see exactly the opposite of what you believe to be true, to be false.

SB_UK
10-19-13, 07:05 AM
Trying to speak at the level of an 8 year old - the idea can be expressed as easily as - is the glass half full or half empty ? To discover that the glass contains poison and not water.

I can't really simplify any further - it's imagery that even the student without even the merest glimpse of insight ... ... should be able to grasp.

Fail to see the point - and you've much work to do before you're ready to offer an opinion on weighty matters.

Kunga Dorji
10-19-13, 07:12 AM
I also have some "issues" with Buddhism, but I find that Lorin Roche does a really good job of addressing my own qualms.

http://www.lorinroche.com/dangers/homeless.html

The "problem" with anything, religion or ???, is when it becomes dogmatic (even science!).

There are dogmatic branches of Buddhism. There are gurus who are too good at being gurus, at the expense of their students. But, that's not the whole of Buddhism- that's not the whole of anything

Roche is a little "out there", but when I read this piece, really, it's exactly what I needed to read at the time. I'm not sure if he's right about everything in it (especially regarding "styles" of meditation), but he brings up so many good points that it doesn't matter.

In the west we have the luxury of picking and choosing and building new things from the old, and if we are granted that opportunity, those of us that are interested should go for it.

A very good article by the way-- but beware that anything powerful is dangerous.
It is a bit like the old "gun lobby" argument that guns don't kill people, people do.
Meditation is extraordinarily powerful, and must be coupled with training in wisdom and ethics.
However, it need not be associated with abandoning worldly existence, just with learning not to be obsessed with it.

SB_UK
10-19-13, 07:13 AM
Never forget: Your Doctor is your employee, NOT your boss. ME:-)

Who needs to remember ?
Some guy politician has just stated - that people need to remember that politicians are public servants.

Ever seen a servant earn more than their master ?

Too funny.

SB_UK
10-19-13, 07:16 AM
Nothing works in a world of money.

You don't need to think about religion, calculus, global warming, meditation etc
- all of that corrects naturally in a world without money (and friends of money).

SB_UK
10-19-13, 07:28 AM
There's only 1 idea people have to get their heads around.

Hmmm... ... friends of money -
who's in yesterday's free newspaper ?

http://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/slow-ignorant-lawyers-charge-by-the-hour-to-inflate-bills-says-leading-judge-8888893.html?origin=internalSearch

Go figure.

Who'd have thought lawyers were madly in love with money ?
They seem such honest, upstanding members of society.

It really makes you wonder, doesn't it ?

SB_UK
10-19-13, 07:30 AM
hahah!

Comment # 1

So what's new?
These parasites have it all their own way and can charge what they want because corporate mugs always pay up.
It's just like the bankers.
Their customers don't seem to complain about the excessive fees they have to pay so these creeps continually up the price.
Of course if one rries to suggest this is bad for social inclusion or morality then one is accused of playing the politics of envy - which does not make any real sense but sounds good.
I am starting to hate this world. Rampant greed, our importing of people who want to kill us; self serving politicians; untrustworthy Police

SB_UK
10-19-13, 07:58 AM
what's my point ?
when you've a mind full ness - you don't get any 'reward' from money/power and are free.

I can repeat it again if you like.


when you've a mind full ness - you don't get any 'reward' from money/power and are free.

mattif
10-19-13, 08:33 PM
Actually I was more or less quoting the Dalai Lama on the controversy created by a small breakaway group who claim the right to be the true representatives of Tibetan Buddhism

Oh. But that appears to have nothing to do with what we were talking about.

They are not primarily my standards, but yes, I have observed that the habit of cross referencing and looking for commonality is the best way to proceed.I haven't the faintest idea what you're referring to, here. It doesn't make sense because you haven't stated what it is you're trying to proceed to. In order to achieve what?

Harris can be pretty attacking and as a Westerner trained in a Western University (and especially a Western Medical School)- the taint of that old habit still clings somewhat to me.How is Harris attacking? Please use direct quotes and state specifically how this is an attack... something more than merely a strong intellectual argument. Attack implies some degree of unfairness.

Of course, the bottom line is that it is irrelevant how we describe Harris. You can claim it's an attack all you like. It won't make his points (or yours) any more or less true. But what I keep seeing, over and over, is the convenient deployment of ad hominem arguments in place of meaningful response.

It's an attack... He's arrogant... He's an elitist...
It's not that you can't make claims like this. But you have to back them up with specific evidence and a convincing explanation -- and I haven't seen any of that.

The idea that there is a single monolithic Buddhism that decides how to preset itself (as per the Vatican or the Archbishop of Canterbury) is a fallacy projected by Westerners who are used to that way of thinking.Harris makes no such claims, nor would such a claim be relevant for or against his argument. You are nitpicking arguments which haven't even been made. This is essentially a variant of the straw man argument.

Secondly- mindfulness has been taken from Buddhism and re- presented as a psychological tool by psychologists who are virtually all practicing Buddhists, and were virtually all members of the hippie movement.Yes, mindfulness from Buddhism -- nobody is challenging that. (In fact, it's the entire focus of the essay.) But your claim that "virtually all" psychologists researching mindfulness are Buddhists, and were members of the hippie movement, is highly dubious. However, there's no urgent need to determine its truth or falsity, since it's not relevant to the discussion, either way.

So his first point is demonstrably wrong.What? It's not even clear just what you think is his first point. But no matter, since what you've offered above doesn't seem particularly relevant to any point he makes. You've said nothing, so far, which would refute anything Harris actually says, because you've really not addressed anything he says.

You would benefit greatly from reading Aldous Huxley's
The Perennial Philosophy" here- but the points of commonality here are enormous- and they help us do a reality check.I have not read that particular book by Huxley. You think that I should. I will put it on my long list of Books To Read. The rest of your sentence has no clear point of reference, so is unintelligible.

IE If I walk down the road and see a pink elephant or hear a voice in my head telling me to kill someone, then the process of cross checking that idea with other passers by might just convince me that there was reason to question the validity of my own observations.
Can we just, perhaps, actually discuss the essay? Maybe? Do you recognize just how much you have avoided addressing the issues at hand -- even though you were quite quick to deride and dismiss them, previously?

As a small example-- one of the quotes I heard at The Dalai Lama's last speeches was of a conversation with an elderly Islamic cleric who said that the common understanding of Jihad amongst Islamic terrorists was wrong: that it actually means the fight against one's negative emotions".
The word essentially means struggle, but within the context of Islam it is VERY CLEAR that this struggle may be an internal battle within oneself, or an external, physical, deadly battle against the enemies of Islam. If you read the Qur'an, this will not be in doubt. In. The. Slightest.

It's also worth recognizing that regardless of this particular cleric's opinion, the vast majority of Muslims disagree with him, including the overwhelming majority of Muslim clerics, imams, ayatollahs, and other spiritual leaders of the faith -- among both Shia and Sunni Muslims.

I follow some of the religious trappings because
1) It is a sign of respect to my teacher- and the respect granted him helps him manifest his great qualities.
2) Some of the techniques are extraordinarily powerful mnemonic and mind calming devices.
3) They are beautiful in themselves, and going through the process elicits a conditioned reflex that allows me to meditate more effectively.
I'm glad that works for you. Could you possibly address the topic we were on? It would seem that some of those "techniques" to which you refer, may be the same or similar to what Harris is discussing.

There are also people wo work very hard, and have low levels of literacy, and follow it as a religion because that path suits them.
If Buddhism is not a religion, then it is quite strange that millions of people follow it as a religion. Sorry, but that makes it a religion -- at least some big part of it.

Furthermore, if you argue that Buddhism is not monolithic (which neither I nor Harris would particularly argue with) then you have to also recognize that you can't make generalized statements about it, either.


However, again, Harris makes the fallacious assumption that there is aunified Buddhism that will fall lockstep into the command of one leader or leadership group.He never does anything of the sort. With this statement, you are again confirming that you still have not read the very essay which you continue to casually demean and dismiss. What does that suggest about your commitment to logic & scholarship, among other things?

In the essay, Harris is quite explicit that he is specifically addressing the "affluent, well-educated Westerners" who are reading the article in Shambala Sun (presumably, Buddhists).

This is a critical misunderstanding in view of the Buddha's own exhortation that we accept nothing that does not fit in with our own reality testing.It would appear that yours is the critical misunderstanding, here.

the elitist attitude that I have always reacted to in Harris, Dawkins, and Onfrey (who I class as fundamentalist atheists).If you're going to claim that someone is elitist, you should probably back that up with specific examples of the person's words or behaviors which lead you to that conclusion.

Branding someone an elitist does nothing to reduce the validity of their claims and assertions. It is an ad hominem argument which, unless also accompanied with a strong valid argument, serves principally to make it look like you are avoiding answering the person's claims... presumably because you believe that you cannot effectively rebut them.

Lumping in a person with others, as though they were all essentially fungible, is a further logical fallacy whereby you dismiss the person's argument, by dismissing the person, by lumping them in with others whom you dislike... essentially, it's a sort of ad hominem involving gross stereotyping and guilt by association.

I've never heard of Onfrey. Is s/he an atheist?

I have no enthusiasm for atheism.I'll try to remember that the next time that anyone around here is talking about it. I wasn't talking about it. Neither was Harris. It appears as though you have reflexively dismissed anything he has to say because you have placed him into the philosophically-questionable and highly-pejorative category of "fundamentalist atheist."

Now I begin to see why you refuse to discuss the issues. It's because you won't even listen.


Well I did skim it last night before responding-- but let me continue with quoting from it:You skimmed it??? So briefly as to result in your fundamental misunderstandings of the central premises, it appears. How does skimming something serve as an adequate basis on which to condemn it?

I'm sorry, but I'm not letting you brush that one aside. I think it is downright shameful to engage in such vituperative attacks upon an author when you haven't really read the work in question. And, please... it's not like we're talking about a long book. This is a short essay.

Once again, it's behavior like this which makes me seriously question your intellectual integrity. (You can read the previous sentence without the word "intellectual" and it remains correct.)

Maybe you are unaware of the ongoing discussion in Buddhism/Taoism/Zen about the distorting nature of words (the map is not the territory in NLP terms).Oh, no. They have embraced some of the most shallow, pointless areas of post-modernist theory? Surely, they have sunk themselves into a swirling morass of endless jargon dressed up to cover the fact that the ideas involved are generally either (a) meaningless, or (b) long-understood truisms. They would do themselves well to step back and begin to cleanse themselves.

There are many serious discussions in Buddhist circles along the idea that there is an inherent elitism in describing ourselves as Buddhist, Male, American or whatever, as well as an inherent obscuration of the nature of reality.Elitism? I think they must be using a different dictionary that the one we use around here. Perhaps a mistake has been made seeing "elitism" where there is instead only a rough attempt at categorization.

However, Harris' central argument in the essay we are currently discussing (and which you still appear to not have seriously read) is that for the amazing, potentially transformative techniques and insights of Buddhism to reach the larger mass of humanity (and thus have maximal effect) it would be most effective to ditch the term Buddhism... and instead focus primarily on spreading and sharing these techniques which tend to increase compassion, empathy, and mutual understanding.

The word is hindering the effectiveness of the most important element of the thing it describes.

As for people in traditional cultures who practice Buddhism in traditional ways-- who is Sam to criticise them for their choices, just because they do not suit his ends? That is arrogant.Harris does not criticize them. At all. At any point in this essay. You are simply making this up. It is not arrogant of him to say this, because HE DIDN'T SAY IT. But it does say something about you.

I will respond to the rest ofthe article later-You haven't responded to much of any of the article yet! You've primarily responded to things you've grossly misinterpreted or completely fabricated. You also did more than your fair share of rambling about things that seem to be important to you, yet have almost no connection to the subject we were discussing.

but my last comment was a joke-- and as a result of our convict heritage, us Australians have a penchant for obsceneity.
I am sorry it was not amusing.My disappointment was not due to any obscenity. It was partly the lack of obscenity... it was simultaneously vulgar, while carefully making sure not to use any "naughty" language. Please, just do it or don't do it.

The other half of my disappointment at your comment was that it once again offered us nothing more than a shallow ad hominem attack, attempting to insult the author, instead of refuting ANY of his points.

mattif
10-19-13, 09:17 PM
The idea [which Barliman wrongly attributes to Harris] that there is a single monolithic Buddhism that decides how to preset itself (as per the Vatican or the Archbishop of Canterbury) is a fallacy projected by Westerners who are used to that way of thinking.

This is yet another example of you placing your unfounded prejudice and presumption -- based upon gross, demeaning stereotypes -- upon Harris. You assume that he does not understand Buddhism or a "non-Western" way of thinking.

Perhaps you should actually find out about individuals before you make judgments of them based upon crude stereotypes?

There are many places where one can practice vipassana intensively on retreat. Such retreats are conducted in silence—apart from an evening lecture and occasional interviews with a teacher to guide one’s practice. There is also a method of walking meditation that is as deceptively simple as the sitting practice described above, and one generally alternates an hour of sitting with an hour of walking throughout a retreat. In this way, one can practice for 10-14 hours a day without too much physical hardship.
In my experience, there is no substitute for doing extended periods of silent practice.

In my 20’s, I spent 2 years on retreats of this kind, ranging in length from one week to three months.

Sam Harris, How To Meditate

- See more at: http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/how-to-meditate#sthash.5fH8Y6Or.dpufSo, perhaps he might have some slight understanding of what he's talking about? Unlike some other folks, who judge and speak before bothering to learn.

You don't have to agree with him. But you owe to yourself to at least find out what he actually says before you castigate him as just another ignorant, arrogant Westerner.

And it is your repeated failure to do this that leads to me to suggest that is actually you who is both ignorant (of what's being said) and arrogant (by presuming to already know, and to know better).

dvdnvwls
10-19-13, 09:18 PM
That was of course what was said - but you'll realise *not* - what was meant.
So... anything you ever said that was wrong, then you obviously meant the opposite? :) It would have saved time if you had told us that at the beginning. :)

SB_UK
10-20-13, 02:42 AM
So... anything you ever said that was wrong, then you obviously meant the opposite? :) It would have saved time if you had told us that at the beginning. :)

And what is (generally) the reason for people making self-evident points ? Within self-evidence there is always a level of self-referential deference
- which can be used to withdraw a valuable context for interaction. A point, I hope, that you'd realise without ... ... well back to the opening sentence (obviously).

Kunga Dorji
10-20-13, 03:19 AM
Oh. But that appears to have nothing to do with what we were talking about.

I haven't the faintest idea what you're referring to, here. It doesn't make sense because you haven't stated what it is you're trying to proceed to. In order to achieve what?
How is Harris attacking? Please use direct quotes and state specifically how this is an attack... something more than merely a strong intellectual argument. Attack implies some degree of unfairness.

Of course, the bottom line is that it is irrelevant how we describe Harris. You can claim it's an attack all you like. It won't make his points (or yours) any more or less true. But what I keep seeing, over and over, is the convenient deployment of ad hominem arguments in place of meaningful response.

It's an attack... He's arrogant... He's an elitist...
It's not that you can't make claims like this. But you have to back them up with specific evidence and a convincing explanation -- and I haven't seen any of that.

Harris makes no such claims, nor would such a claim be relevant for or against his argument. You are nitpicking arguments which haven't even been made. This is essentially a variant of the straw man argument.

Yes, mindfulness from Buddhism -- nobody is challenging that. (In fact, it's the entire focus of the essay.) But your claim that "virtually all" psychologists researching mindfulness are Buddhists, and were members of the hippie movement, is highly dubious. However, there's no urgent need to determine its truth or falsity, since it's not relevant to the discussion, either way.

What? It's not even clear just what you think is his first point. But no matter, since what you've offered above doesn't seem particularly relevant to any point he makes. You've said nothing, so far, which would refute anything Harris actually says, because you've really not addressed anything he says.

I have not read that particular book by Huxley. You think that I should. I will put it on my long list of Books To Read. The rest of your sentence has no clear point of reference, so is unintelligible.

Can we just, perhaps, actually discuss the essay? Maybe? Do you recognize just how much you have avoided addressing the issues at hand -- even though you were quite quick to deride and dismiss them, previously?

The word essentially means struggle, but within the context of Islam it is VERY CLEAR that this struggle may be an internal battle within oneself, or an external, physical, deadly battle against the enemies of Islam. If you read the Qur'an, this will not be in doubt. In. The. Slightest.

It's also worth recognizing that regardless of this particular cleric's opinion, the vast majority of Muslims disagree with him, including the overwhelming majority of Muslim clerics, imams, ayatollahs, and other spiritual leaders of the faith -- among both Shia and Sunni Muslims.

I'm glad that works for you. Could you possibly address the topic we were on? It would seem that some of those "techniques" to which you refer, may be the same or similar to what Harris is discussing.

If Buddhism is not a religion, then it is quite strange that millions of people follow it as a religion. Sorry, but that makes it a religion -- at least some big part of it.

Furthermore, if you argue that Buddhism is not monolithic (which neither I nor Harris would particularly argue with) then you have to also recognize that you can't make generalized statements about it, either.

He never does anything of the sort. With this statement, you are again confirming that you still have not read the very essay which you continue to casually demean and dismiss. What does that suggest about your commitment to logic & scholarship, among other things?

In the essay, Harris is quite explicit that he is specifically addressing the "affluent, well-educated Westerners" who are reading the article in Shambala Sun (presumably, Buddhists).

It would appear that yours is the critical misunderstanding, here.

If you're going to claim that someone is elitist, you should probably back that up with specific examples of the person's words or behaviors which lead you to that conclusion.

Branding someone an elitist does nothing to reduce the validity of their claims and assertions. It is an ad hominem argument which, unless also accompanied with a strong valid argument, serves principally to make it look like you are avoiding answering the person's claims... presumably because you believe that you cannot effectively rebut them.

Lumping in a person with others, as though they were all essentially fungible, is a further logical fallacy whereby you dismiss the person's argument, by dismissing the person, by lumping them in with others whom you dislike... essentially, it's a sort of ad hominem involving gross stereotyping and guilt by association.

I've never heard of Onfrey. Is s/he an atheist?

I'll try to remember that the next time that anyone around here is talking about it. I wasn't talking about it. Neither was Harris. It appears as though you have reflexively dismissed anything he has to say because you have placed him into the philosophically-questionable and highly-pejorative category of "fundamentalist atheist."

Now I begin to see why you refuse to discuss the issues. It's because you won't even listen.

You skimmed it??? So briefly as to result in your fundamental misunderstandings of the central premises, it appears. How does skimming something serve as an adequate basis on which to condemn it?

I'm sorry, but I'm not letting you brush that one aside. I think it is downright shameful to engage in such vituperative attacks upon an author when you haven't really read the work in question. And, please... it's not like we're talking about a long book. This is a short essay.

Once again, it's behavior like this which makes me seriously question your intellectual integrity. (You can read the previous sentence without the word "intellectual" and it remains correct.)

Oh, no. They have embraced some of the most shallow, pointless areas of post-modernist theory? Surely, they have sunk themselves into a swirling morass of endless jargon dressed up to cover the fact that the ideas involved are generally either (a) meaningless, or (b) long-understood truisms. They would do themselves well to step back and begin to cleanse themselves.

Elitism? I think they must be using a different dictionary that the one we use around here. Perhaps a mistake has been made seeing "elitism" where there is instead only a rough attempt at categorization.

However, Harris' central argument in the essay we are currently discussing (and which you still appear to not have seriously read) is that for the amazing, potentially transformative techniques and insights of Buddhism to reach the larger mass of humanity (and thus have maximal effect) it would be most effective to ditch the term Buddhism... and instead focus primarily on spreading and sharing these techniques which tend to increase compassion, empathy, and mutual understanding.

The word is hindering the effectiveness of the most important element of the thing it describes.

Harris does not criticize them. At all. At any point in this essay. You are simply making this up. It is not arrogant of him to say this, because HE DIDN'T SAY IT. But it does say something about you.

You haven't responded to much of any of the article yet! You've primarily responded to things you've grossly misinterpreted or completely fabricated. You also did more than your fair share of rambling about things that seem to be important to you, yet have almost no connection to the subject we were discussing.

My disappointment was not due to any obscenity. It was partly the lack of obscenity... it was simultaneously vulgar, while carefully making sure not to use any "naughty" language. Please, just do it or don't do it.

The other half of my disappointment at your comment was that it once again offered us nothing more than a shallow ad hominem attack, attempting to insult the author, instead of refuting ANY of his points.

Mattif, I will rest this here- as I have read the essay four times now, and still hold to all my criticisms.
I really do not have time to do a cut and past and deconstruction of the entire thing sentence by sentence.

However- the key points are that
1) Mindfulness techniques have arrived in the West due to the "Buddhism" that Harris regards as an obstruction.
2) A core part of the original teachings of the Buddha is to understand the illlusory nature of the world our mind creates by application of words and grammar. In this understanding is that "tags" like me calling myself a Buddhist- are illusions- they are cartoons or thumbnail sketches.
In fact all the criticisms that Harris raises are already part of the Buddha's teachings. He is the one with the straw man problem.
3) Teaching of mindfulness techniques to psychologists references Buddhist literature directly- whether or not the individual practitioners are Buddhist or not.
4) Erroneous and often harmful definitions of mindfulness techniques are often quoted by psychologists who do not come from a Buddhist background.
5) What some people do who choose to clothe their approach to the Buddha's teachings in a religious garb in no way restricts the development of secular or scientific Buddhism as some are now calling it.
6) The preservation of the Buddha's teachings (which are all about mindfulness and attention has been handed down in direct lineages for 2,500 years, and has seen the collapse of many cultures. Right now it is thriving. In having a go at the religious approaches to the imaginary construct of "Buddhism", Harris must make a choice- he has to either decide that the teachings are of no value (which he has not done) or he should propose a way of being sure that HIS way of doing things will propagate the teachings for another 2,500 years.
6) He is being overly intrusive into the way other people choose to live their lives (This last one is a big one for all us ADDers-- we always have authority figures dictating to us their half baked ideas of the way they know we should live our live--- so maybe there is a little transference in my reaction to Harris).

Anyhow- I stand by all the points you answered above, and see no need to expand further upon them. Anyone who actually cares can read the contrasting posts and draw their own conclusions.

dvdnvwls
10-20-13, 03:28 AM
And what is (generally) the reason for people making self-evident points ? Within self-evidence there is always a level of self-referential deference
- which can be used to withdraw a valuable context for interaction. A point, I hope, that you'd realise without ... ... well back to the opening sentence (obviously).
Excuse me for saying something self-evident, but you didn't make a self-evident point, you made a just-plain-incorrect point. The reason (generally) for making incorrect points is being mistaken about the facts. Within incorrectness there is always falsehood. :)

Kunga Dorji
10-20-13, 04:59 AM
Excuse me for saying something self-evident, but you didn't make a self-evident point, you made a just-plain-incorrect point. The reason (generally) for making incorrect points is being mistaken about the facts. Within incorrectness there is always falsehood. :)

This is getting horribly confusing.

Way too much thinking going on!

SB_UK
10-20-13, 11:20 AM
Excuse me for saying something self-evident, but you didn't make a self-evident point, you made a just-plain-incorrect point. The reason (generally) for making incorrect points is being mistaken about the facts. Within incorrectness there is always falsehood. :)

You need to see that a paradox of modern day thinking is to excuse oneself into lazy positions - you're in one now - and are unable to see the childishly simple point I'm making, through your own pre-conceptions on matters which extend far beyond the subject of conversation - into other areas, not including but excluding several which sometimes are discussed by people, at times such as these.

daveddd
10-20-13, 11:38 AM
You need to see that a paradox of modern day thinking is to excuse oneself into lazy positions - you're in one now - and are unable to see the childishly simple point I'm making, through your own pre-conceptions on matters which extend far beyond the subject of conversation - into other areas, not including but excluding several which sometimes are discussed by people, at times such as these.

since i read that book i sent you, im getting on the same page

i can see better where you comin from

SB_UK
10-20-13, 12:35 PM
since i read that book i sent you, im getting on the same page

i can see better where you comin from

That book contains information which I've never read elsewhere, so thanks for sending it to me - and if you find any others which cover similar subject areas ... ... ...
or even unrelated ?

But that's not to suggest that there will be any - just saying - that books such as that specific one, don't come along very often - if at all, expecially to those people who disagree with our commendations for that specific text.

mattif
10-20-13, 04:55 PM
Mattif, I will rest this here- as I have read the essay four times now, and still hold to all my criticisms.
I really do not have time to do a cut and past and deconstruction of the entire thing sentence by sentence.

I've still seen no evidence, beyond your mere assertions, that you've seriously read the essay. You may have skimmed the words on the page, but there is no sign that you've analyzed and ingested the points being asserted. You haven't responded to those points. And now you suddenly don't have time to properly deconstruct it. How convenient for you.

Many of your criticisms were of things not found in the essay. Things which you seem to have simply fabricated. And I pointed this out to you, clearly and explicitly, for each and every one of them that I found. You offered no response whatsoever, other than to state that you still hold to those criticisms.

Your refusal to address these points -- points which are not merely differences of opinion -- appears to me to be a tacit admission of your misrepresentations and fabrications. If these were simply errors on your part or mine, you would've either admitted your mistake ("Oh, I misread that. Thanks.") or you would've shown mine ("No, look... in the third line of paragraph three, he says xyzxyzxyz.")

You have repeatedly made strong criticisms and condemnations Harris and of things you claim he has said. But my requests for you to please show me where and when he said those things go unanswered.

Barliman: "Harris makes claim X, which I don't like."
Mattif: "Where does he make that claim? I don't see it."
Barliman: "Harris makes claim X, which I don't like."
Mattif: "Yes, you said that already... but can you show me where?"
Barliman: "I don't have time to discuss this. I hold to all my points."

Barliman: "Harris makes claim Y, which I don't like."
Mattif: "Actually, Harris says exactly the opposite thing, right here..."
Barliman: "Harris makes claim Y, which I don't like."
Mattif: "Yes, you said that already... but look, you can see right there that is not what Harris said. Why don't you address what he really said?"
Barliman: "I don't have time to discuss this. I hold to all my points."


6) He is being overly intrusive into the way other people choose to live their lives (This last one is a big one for all us ADDers-- we always have authority figures dictating to us their half baked ideas of the way they know we should live our live--- so maybe there is a little transference in my reaction to Harris).Overly intrusive??? He wrote an essay! You are free to disagree with it or ignore it or anything else. But if you're going to openly insult and attack the author, then you have an ethical responsibility to explain why, in detail, and be prepared to show your work.

To do nothing more than sling mud, castigating someone for things they did NOT say, or for gross misrepresentations of their points, is quite simply intellectual dishonesty and cowardice. It is a clear sign of one who is ethically bankrupt.


Anyhow- I stand by all the points you answered above, and see no need to expand further upon them. Anyone who actually cares can read the contrasting posts and draw their own conclusions.Yes, I certainly hope that they will read and make their own conclusions.

Simenora
10-20-13, 05:09 PM
It is my mindful observation that this very complex discussion of mindfulness may make the practice seem unnessessarily complicated to those people unfamiliar to this very straightforward idea.

ana futura
10-20-13, 05:15 PM
It is my mindful observation that this very complex discussion of mindfulness may make the practice seem unnessessarily complicated to those people unfamiliar to this very straightforward idea.

:D Yes, indeed. I think it's safe to say that this thread wins the irony award.

Kunga Dorji
10-20-13, 06:10 PM
You need to see that a paradox of modern day thinking is to excuse oneself into lazy positions - you're in one now - and are unable to see the childishly simple point I'm making, through your own pre-conceptions on matters which extend far beyond the subject of conversation - into other areas, not including but excluding several which sometimes are discussed by people, at times such as these.


This comment is actually worthy of a separate thread, as it is way too complex to discuss here without further de-railing an already very fractured thread.

I will title it "Descarte's Error"- referring to the book by the Neurologist Antonio Damasio

SB_UK
10-22-13, 11:06 AM
Is there any chance that all we're looking at is concentration on the breath - so that it conforms to a certain pattern (ie deep) which is associated with stress reduction:
eg here
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22525009

ie - we all know that people calm down when they breathe more slowly / deeply
- and concentrating on this (being mindful of breath)

simply ensures it.

SB_UK
10-22-13, 11:08 AM
So - why does slow breathing do that ?

Something as simple as some sorta' metabolic switch from anaerobic into aerobic - reduced ROS production - reduced stress ?

IE meditation/yoga/mindfulness understood through metabolic medicine ??

SB_UK
10-22-13, 11:12 AM
That works.

"A mild inhibition of mitochondrial respiration extends the lifespan of many organisms"

- we're just slowing ourselves down.

Stress speeds us up.

-- And --

stress -> ER stress -> unfolded protein response -> mitochondrial response -> apoptosis

http://circres.ahajournals.org/content/107/7/839/F1.medium.gif

SB_UK
10-22-13, 11:13 AM
What's the message ?

Chill out dude.

SB_UK
10-22-13, 11:21 AM
Burning the candle at both ends.

Telomerase.

http://rechargebiomedical.com/userfiles/images/telomere-zoom.jpg

ana futura
10-22-13, 06:35 PM
Is there any chance that all we're looking at is concentration on the breath - so that it conforms to a certain pattern (ie deep) which is associated with stress reduction:
eg here
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22525009

ie - we all know that people calm down when they breathe more slowly / deeply
- and concentrating on this (being mindful of breath)

simply ensures it.

No, not at all. There are many meditations where you do not observe the breath at all.

The breath is merely an anchor point, something to return to when you notice your mind wandering. Beginners tend to cling to it, but at an advanced level of meditation one no longer watches the breath.

The most effective meditations for me are ones where I purposely observe body sensations, thoughts, or emotions. If you observe the breath at all during those it is only to use it as an easy point to return to when the mind wanders. You can use anything as an anchor point- the feeling in your big toe, or visual information in your line of site (think mandala, but this can be done with anything- the floor, a patch of wall.)

I also love walking meditation- there you anchor yourself to the up and down motion of the feet.

In mediation courses, you are often instructed to try your hardest not to alter the breath when using it as anchor. Mindfulness is about observation. Of course that's almost impossible for beginners, because when you observe how shallow your breathing is, you want to change it. But that's what you are always working towards.

ana futura
10-22-13, 06:36 PM
SB, there's so much research on meditation and neuroscience out there. Why don't you read some of it? I think it might help you to understand better. It is slowing yourself down to an extent, but it's also more complicated than that. The end goal is cultivating attention- and it's easier to cultivate attention when you are slowed down. But you can also cultivate attention while engaged in fast paced or overwhelming activities. It's hard to do as a beginner, that's why you start slow.

Walking meditation usually appears to be very slow- but after you have done it for a while, you can apply the same techniques when you are running.

Kunga Dorji
10-22-13, 07:08 PM
Is there any chance that all we're looking at is concentration on the breath - so that it conforms to a certain pattern (ie deep) which is associated with stress reduction:
eg here
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22525009

ie - we all know that people calm down when they breathe more slowly / deeply
- and concentrating on this (being mindful of breath)

simply ensures it.

That is part of that- but by no means all.
Inbreath- sympathetic activation-- so make it quick
Outbreath- parasympathetic activation-- so make it slow.
Anxiety--> hyperventilation--> drop in Carbon dioxide levels
-->metabolic alkalosis--> binding of calcium ions in blood stream to proteins
--.altered neural function--. pins and needles-- more anxiety
All these changes are "interocepted in the brain (insula -->.amygdala) as anxiety and increase the felt sense of anxiety.
Anxiety driven attention is always exhausting.

Metabolic understanding is helpful in educating some of my less intuitive colleagues into the validity of what we are doing- but it is only one aspect of it.

Ana futura is right-- fully pursued mindfulness is about pursuing perfect attention- complete mental clarity and alertness, and complete freedom from unnecessary suffering. Those who achieve the goal become very powerful forces for the good in our community (never for the bad-- as the perfection of attention also requires the perfection of wisdom ad compassion,or it will implode on itself).

SB_UK
10-23-13, 05:08 AM
OK - different approach.

ADD is something about attention difficulties.
Mindfulness is something about improving attention.

So [question] - mindfulness is a cure to ADHD ?

Is that statement correct ?

In Barliman's statement above - Barliman mentions wisdom and compassion, as well as mindfulness.
I fully agree with a personal enquiry (a form of contemplation = a form of mindfulness ??maybe??), wisdom and compassion ... ...

however am struggling because mindfulness as defined here - does not appear to use the language facility of mind - whereas 'contemplation' (the type I'm describing) does require the individual to use the langauage facility.

Is mindfulness simply training the mind to pay attention to 1 thing ?

Isn't that hyperfocus ?

SB_UK
10-23-13, 05:13 AM
Second question -

why do ADDers need it more than nonADDers?
So - I've answered this question - but I could be wrong - so fire away.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 05:22 AM
No, not at all. There are many meditations where you do not observe the breath at all.


The problem though is that even if eg 'observing' a body part eg big toe
- I think that the shift away from mind/language might have the exact same effect.

Which'd place 'breath observation' as a beginner's technique, and body scanning as a secondary technique
- exactly as you describe.

I'm sensing that you're reacting aggressively towards an analysis of mindfulness ?
If you genuinely would like people to reap the rewards of it - I think that you'll benefit from finding the words to explain it to somebody who has no opinion on the technique.

To be honest - I have no opinion - because it's still a little like explaining that you need to go into a building marked gym without stating what's inside the gym.

Without a full explanation - the individual might run the risk of entering - and running around with a 25 kg plate on their head - because they've not been taught how to fix it onto a bar ... ...

And as for reading - if I have 2 experts on the technique here - I should be able to get to what my mind needs to know much more easily from talking to them.

-*-

It seems to me that you're now describing mindfulness as 'observation of self' and NOT mindfulness as 'observation through the eyes of self'

ie objectivity vs subjectivity.

There's mileage in this explanation.

The animal believes what it sees - the tree is a tree.
The educated human mind sees the tree as an evolved wave which appeared out of effectively NO 'thing' - 13.7 billion years ago.

-*-

Changing approach again - do you like this take on mindfulness ?


You know - all of this is a bit like trying to pin a tail on a donkey, blindfold ... ... ...

SB_UK
10-23-13, 05:44 AM
So - as you know - I'm classifying people as ensnared in the materialist paradigm or people freed from the materialist paradigm.

Materialism is ensnared in the subjective/animal perspective.
Freedom from materialism in the objective perspective.

Where does mindfulness fit in ?
The single most powerful capacity to shift from subjective to objective perspective is to understand the world [NATURAL SCIENCES] in which we live in.

This does require some attention - but not a great deal - particularly in this world of video teaching.

-*-

When I'm feeling anxiety - I think that shifting focus onto breath eg results in killing off my own mind driving a cortisol response --

are we simply not describing a facility for switching off the mind's activation of its own stress response ?

So ... ...

http://ajpgi.physiology.org/content/ajpgi/280/2/G173/F1.medium.gif

SB_UK
10-23-13, 05:47 AM
So simply:
'certain thoughts' -> conditioned fear response -> CRF -> stress.

So - eliminate 'certain thoughts' by switching them off prevents a conditioned fear response -> CRF -> stress.

It's important to note that the stress response - for survival MUST be instantaneous - so we could consider it like a light switch - where thinking generally in an immoral societal infrastructure triggers a stres response -

- and all mindfulness is - is a learnt capacity to switch off the light switch - thereby killing the harm which we do to ourselves - through dwelling on thoughts which do us no good.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 05:49 AM
Mindfulness is the development of an ultra-powerful and responsive off-trigger finger on CRF production ?

That idea can be made to work also.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 05:58 AM
http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=3717&Itemid=0&limit=1&limitstart=2

"Lazar and Hölzel have also recently reported that the region of the brain most associated with emotional reactivity and fear—the amygdala—has decreased gray matter density in meditators who experience less stress. The most surprising finding was that both of these types of structural brain changes were seen after only eight weeks of practice in a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program."

SB_UK
10-23-13, 06:00 AM
So - right the way through this thread - the only pattern I'm seeing is:

mindfulness/meditation -> psych stress deactivation -> improved attention/cognitive function

ie we train to be able to stop ourselves (our own mind) from dissolving ourselves (our physical body).

SB_UK
10-23-13, 06:10 AM
OK -- getting there ... ... the following section relates to the subjectivity - S vs objectivity - O idea above ... ...

"Two distinct neural networks in different parts of the brain contribute to our experience of a “self.” Activity in one region is associated with a descriptive narrative: thoughts about what is happening and how we are. The other region is associated with a more direct experience of sensation and emotion in the present moment."

http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=3717&Itemid=0&limit=1&limitstart=4

So - the narrative is 'subjective' and the experience if 'objective'

-- and we're trying to kill off the narrative ??

-*-

The incessant chattering.

Though - the incessant chattering I experience is ALL related to having to do 'things' which're pointless - because the structure of society dictates that we must.

So - filling out tax forms, finding batteries for devices which have long gone out of production etc etc


- lots of 'narrative' based around an unnecessarily convoluted society we're immersed in - all constructed solely from one perspective - to make money.

Now - the average monastery dweller doesn't have any of these concerns ... ... and so are in a fundamentally different 'mental' space - maybe one in which the benefits of meditation/mindfulness are easier to grasp.


Honest opinion - EVERYTHING CAN BE EXPLAINED ... though maybe some of it unprovable.

Kunga Dorji
10-23-13, 06:16 AM
OK -- getting there ... ... the following section relates to the subjectivity - S vs objectivity - O idea above ... ...

"Two distinct neural networks in different parts of the brain contribute to our experience of a “self.” Activity in one region is associated with a descriptive narrative: thoughts about what is happening and how we are. The other region is associated with a more direct experience of sensation and emotion in the present moment."

http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=3717&Itemid=0&limit=1&limitstart=4

So - the narrative is 'subjective' and the experience if 'objective'

-- and we're trying to kill off the narrative ??

-*-

The incessant chattering.

Though - the incessant chattering I experience is ALL related to having to do 'things' which're pointless - because the structure of society dictates that we must.

So - filling out tax forms, finding batteries for devices which have long gone out of production etc etc


- lots of 'narrative' based around an unnecessarily convoluted society we're immersed in - all constructed solely from one perspective - to make money.

Now - the average monastery dweller doesn't have any of these concerns ... ... and so are in a fundamentally different 'mental' space - maybe one in which the benefits of meditation/mindfulness are easier to grasp.


Honest opinion - EVERYTHING CAN BE EXPLAINED ... though maybe some of it unprovable.

You know-- that "incessant chattering can be stilled, for good, even in the midst of a busy modern life.

I know it.

There has been none in my mind for the last 9 days- despite everything.

It is nice- but a little odd.

Kunga Dorji
10-23-13, 06:25 AM
OK - different approach.

ADD is something about attention difficulties.
Mindfulness is something about improving attention.

So [question] - mindfulness is a cure to ADHD ?

Is that statement correct ?

In Barliman's statement above - Barliman mentions wisdom and compassion, as well as mindfulness.
I fully agree with a personal enquiry (a form of contemplation = a form of mindfulness ??maybe??), wisdom and compassion ... ...

however am struggling because mindfulness as defined here - does not appear to use the language facility of mind - whereas 'contemplation' (the type I'm describing) does require the individual to use the langauage facility.

Is mindfulness simply training the mind to pay attention to 1 thing ?

Isn't that hyperfocus ?

No- that is called single pointed attention, or calm abiding, or shamatha.
That is a skill that is necessary to bring to deeper levels of meditation.
Sometimes the "single point" can be something quite complex, like awareness of the whole of the sensation of the breath throughout the whole body- sometimes it can be very narrow- like the sensation of the breath of the nostrils.
What it is not is awareness of a verbal description of the sensation of the breath.

Another form of single pointed attention is to simply sit still and watch your mind and look at the spaces in between thoughts and notice what can be observed there.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 06:42 AM
So -
we've:
[1] attention to the words used by mind ('I need to remember the capital of Australia') and
[2] attention to the senses (eg the feel of wind against the face).

And mindfulness is training the facility of mind/brain which pays attention to [2] ?

SB_UK
10-23-13, 06:43 AM
Generally
[1] -> leads -> to stress response
[2] -> does not lead -> to stress response

?

SB_UK
10-23-13, 06:46 AM
Now coming back to a theme described to Ana Futura by Private Message ... ... ...

If we've:
"[1] attention to the words used by mind (paying attention to the words/ideas 'I need to remember the capital of Australia' and the word 'Canberra') and
[2] attention to the senses (eg the feel of wind against the face)."

Then we can't be in the present moment supporting [1] since [1] takes us out of real-time:
Brain Scans Can Reveal Your Decisions 7 Seconds Before You “Decide” (http://exploringthemind.com/the-mind/brain-scans-can-reveal-your-decisions-7-seconds-before-you-decide)

And mindfulness is strengthening [2]

However - what use is the mind (thinking/narrative/analytical) ... ... ...

The point is to be happy

What's there to know ?

SB_UK
10-23-13, 06:51 AM
Do we need to explicitly ***know*** anything to be happy ?

Were the great prophets repositories of information ?

Has a world overburdened by information taken us backwards ?

Is the purpose to switch from attentional mode [1] to attentional mode [2] - and in this 'heavy' systematizing world - have we inadvertently built attentional mode [1] and destroyed off attentional mode [2] ?

SB_UK
10-23-13, 06:56 AM
So - now we're back to another theme -

of systematizing versus empathizing

--- the point being, [JUST AN IDEA] , that attention to [2] associates with building the pathways associated with empathy ?

Connecting us from mindfulness - to compassion ?

SB_UK
10-23-13, 07:00 AM
Now ... ... since I'm constantly repeating that ADDers are a new species [ENFORCEDLY SOCIAL]
- then it makes sense that our sensitivity is somewhat related to [2] within context of the empathic connection.

The clear though coming through - is mindfulness training for telepathic communication between ADDers

- our sensitivity.

To read more into communication - a sensitivity at the level of mind - an inability to lie.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 07:12 AM
It's certainly true - that basing our society around systematizing has failed
- we've just ended up with considerable confusion - as everything people do has become infiltrated by jargon, which nobody else understands.

It shouldn't be a surprise for anybody - the idea that what we're all meant to be doing, we're all meant to be doing for the best for our species.

But it's fairly obvious that the very vast majority of what we individually do - does not have a positive effect on the rest - and for the most part, people are pursuing a personal agenda to help themselves to remain in the upper parts of a social hierarchy.

Now - what'd be great - is if people actually felt personal reward from doing the social as opposed to the selfish thing.

We enter into the PFC vs ACC reward system debate ? (ie selfish vs social reward system battle) ... ...

- the PFC would dwell in attentional mode [1], whereas ACC associated with attentional mode [2] ... I think.

PFC with systematizing, ACC with empathizing.

And so - what're you suggesting ?
I think I'm suggesting - that mindfulness might make sense if it's building the attentional mode which the ADDer as social organism is predisposed to -
ie - strengthening the capacity to pay attention to the reward system which we're predisposed to floating our boats.

However ... ...
if this were straight telepathy - all well and good.

If it were acting morally - then this is impossible in a world of money.

Though - maybe we're looking at telepathy being the reward system activator - with a moral society kinda' inevitably resulting thereafter.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 07:19 AM
I like that idea.

Telepathic communication (empathizing property) as our reward system activation (fundamentally social)
wiping aside
PFC activation - in systematizer.

Of course - we're capable of systematizing also - but not of being carried away - as systematizers are - into systematizing for the sake of systematizing.

Systematizing IS necessary - but only when the systems which're generated are for the best for the species.

Meaning elegance in systematizing - as opposed to convolution.

It's a little disturbing how many people out there - seem to like deliberately confusing other people with esoteric jargon - it's so much harder to communicate than it is to obfuscate.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 07:25 AM
Wanting the best for other people - becomes rewarding.
Actual neurochemical reward.
Attentional construction mode [2] required.

Compassion seems to always be an aspect referenced in 'proper' mindfulness.

But - just as systematizing requires learning prior to systematizing activating the PFC reward system - we need to 'learn' ... ... to develop in a certain way
- prior to being able to get social reward.

The attention we associate with learning (PFC/systematizing)
shifts to the attention we're talking about here - ACC/empathizing

- paying attention to the nonverbal domain - into the sensory sphere.

The point isn't that we become better at paying attention to the sensory stimuli (wind blowing on our faces eg)
- but that this attention allows us to interface with the social reward system.

Through telepathic transfer of information - where the sole rule is that people need to be physically juxtaposed on at least one occasion - to become entangled
- thereafter physical location in communication is unimportant.

Which is why I can find a person I've met to match most people here.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 07:40 AM
That's good - because previously - I've needed wisdom to confer morality
- but this goes a step beyond
- because it makes us a social organism (in a fair societal infrastructure) prior to the acquisition of wisdom (which we're predisposed to)
- but which enforcedly must take a while.

It's hard [impossible] to be a wise 7 year old ... ...

So - ADDers born social, given a certain (properly social permissive) societal infrastructure.
Instead of training attention through immersion within the domain of words
- training attention through mindfulness [attentional mode 2] - allows us to 'connect' to one another -

however - I do that by simply emptying my mind of words, accessing a feeling of wanting to know (it's a bit like despair), and waiting for whatever idea comes along.

Which could be mindfulness - if mindfulness is pushing out of the verbal/narrative mind ?

Now - this'd answer another of the questions from previously ?

Because it'd suggest what we need is balanced systematizing/empathizing
- to float the ADDer's mind ?

SB_UK
10-23-13, 07:49 AM
Summarising
[ A ]
Looks like we can concentrate the mind on thoughts which can be characterized as 'verbal/numerical' or 'sensory'.
[ B ]
Modern society favours 'verbal/numerical' thinkers ie systematizers.
[ C ]
Just as systematizing activates our reward system (PFC - pre-frontal cortex - selfish reward system) eg working up 'klingon calculus' has no species benefit - so ***can*** empathizing activate our reward system (ACC - anterior cingulate cortex - social reward system).
[ D ]
I think that mindfulness is a mechanism of training attention towards accessing social reward (in ADDers) - noting our 'shrivelled' PFC ... ... by developing the attentional capacity required for a form of telepathic communication between people who have become entangled through geographical juxtaposition - on at least one occasion.
This telepathic communication activates our reward system and thereby helps to lift us away from the PFC stand-alone reward system - which tends towards introducing systems of no net species benefit (eg Klingon calculus).

It's not that the ADDer mind won't/can't systematize - it's that it'll only systematize when systematizing is necessary for species benefit.

Not many systems (at least compared to now) - are required.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 07:56 AM
That basic argument would place mindfulness within a setting that I can understand.

We're looking at communication [written]/mindfulness/compassion/wisdom - as being a collection of attributes/factors - which 'd result in a sense of reward

- a sense of reward in the ADDer (predisposed to all of this) - an ADDer - all of whom - have been unable to find anything in the world we live in -
as in absolutely nothing - which could be vaguely construed as rewarding.

It doesn't matter whichever drug we try, how much money, number of certificates, sporting achievements, publications generated, how many countries visited etc etc
- none of that comes close to being rewarding.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 08:36 AM
So - I've shifted from

mindfulness as switch on psych stress elimination through rumination on words (a fruitless venture)
into
that idea alongside the more important development of attentional pathway required for deriving reward from communication between people who're 'physically' known to one another [hence entangled].

A new reward system for a new species.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 09:00 AM
And

ved -anta

is the end of knowledge ... ... which is allied with the death of attentional mode [1] of numerical/verbal systematizing.

-*-

Pushing past systematizing as our reward system.
We then arrive at a translation of the metaphor of the Tower of Babel.

Systematizing - generating systems in which we play God -
nowhere is this more apparent than in genetic engineering.

Oh my ... ... the things we do; it's just that easy to do without a care for the consequences - or even the means to know why ? the poor animal is sick afterwards.

-*-

So - it's not that we kill off systematizing - it's that we kill off reward system activation / addiction through systematizing ? Or systematizing for systematizing's sake.

It's a bit like killing off the love/desire of knowledge - or addiction towards knowledge under the rubric of 'knowledge is power'
- but what is left - pretty much liek the love/desire of money - is that knowledge / money are free to be usde - once the addiction to them has passed.

However - with money - there is no valid usage for it - in a rational, moral world

- raising the question of whether we've reached the end of knowledge also.

What's there to know ?
So - we don't know how to time travel - but we can explain why it's not possible.

As of discovery of the boson class - we've kinda' hit a causal basis to reality unfolding

- the end of knowledge ?

It's true that developing the empathic reward system / art -- don't require the verbal/numerical systematizing facility.

The end of knowledge ?

Maybe.

What do I want to know ?
Nothing.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 09:14 AM
Just a sec - what do I want to know ?
We can do lightning fast wireless internet communication currently.

What do I want to know ?
We can do distress free existence thanks to epidemiology.

What do I want to know ?
We can do electronic music.

What do I want to know ?
High resolution image transfer is possible.

What do I want to know ?
24/7 communication between all people.

What do I want to know ?
Solar energy harvesting from the desert has been done.

What do I want to know ?
Tech wholly distributed world government eliminating social hierarchy (money/power) can be done.

What do I want to know ?
Vegan food storage using freezing/drying - OK.

What do I want to know ?
A means of obtaining social reward through using mindfulness.

What do I want to know ?
Where my dog and the sun are.

Nothing more.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 09:16 AM
Dogs're good.

http://thumbs.dreamstime.com/x/german-shepherd-sun-glasses-23369086.jpg
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SB_UK
10-23-13, 09:21 AM
What do I want to know ?
Where my dog and the sun are.

Nothing more.


[1] a little north of where I'm sitting
[2] a little south of where I'm sitting.

-*-

Nothing more.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 09:33 AM
One final summary

[1] Systematizing has its 'attentional' training program [standard English,Mathematical training].
[2] Empathizing has its 'attentional' training program (mindfulness).

If we tune into the mindful program - we move ourselves towards being able to pay attention to a form of telepathic communication [if performed alongside a certain type of learning - a personal, rational enquiry into morality] which activates our reward system.

This is a social reward system, and replaces the selfish reward system which is so evident in current society of:
-- 'love/desire of money' [root of all evil]
-- 'love/desire of power' [root of all evil]
-- 'knowledge is power'


-*-

OK - starting to make sense ... ...

-*-

ADDers are custom-designed towards the social reward system; although systematizing is still required - the systems welcomed into mind need to make sense
- placing us at a profound disadvantage to nonADDers whose minds aren't as fussy on the information which their minds can be motivated to store.

It's impossible for the ADDer to pay attention to studies which're pointless to the frame of perspective of the ADDer.

For instance - current genetics research into the common complex disorders
- when they're all solved by ... ...

ALL TOGETHER NOW

- massive global infrastructural change - towards a social hierarchy-less society, best enacted through setting up a global co-operative which allows local generation of survival essentials through personal committment.

You allz gotta' do your bit for your own existence - and thereafter the 23.5 hours which're left in the day are yours to walk with your dog in the sun.

Just don't forget to PICK UP !!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ha8NiP6Y9lg

SB_UK
10-23-13, 09:36 AM
Think poop!

Rwanda’s Poo Powered Prisons (http://www.myweku.com/2011/12/rwandas-poo-powered-prisons/)

Devised by local fishermen and farmers, these wetlands served, in effect, as the natural sewage treatment plant for the city (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_Kolkata_Wetlands).

-*-

The [cambridge]Shire -- a hobbit village sit athrough frighteningly torrential wireless bandwidth
- post-ring dispatch [= love/desire of money/power] into the fires of evolutionary anachronism.

The love/desire of money, power, knowledge is dead.

The 'boson' class (Stabile - social impulse) defines the root basis to creation/evolution.

Social structure formation.

ADDer - emergence of a social organism.

Inevitable - given what we know of nature, and what we know of our historical incapacity to get along.

It was only ever a matter of time before a large red bus marked - enforcedly social - 'd come along.

Tendency to wisdom was my former suggestion - but with wisdom coming so late - it might have been enough
- but belt and braces approach -
killing off PFC neurochemical reward and putting in place ACC neurochemical reward through communication of best intentions ('right intention' etc)
- in telepathic communication between known individuals

- really would seal the deal.

Nice connection to the seemingly telepathic connection between birds when they fly in formation.

All makes sense.

-*-

But I can't verify telepathic communication by myself.

Kunga Dorji
10-23-13, 10:06 AM
Think poop!

Rwanda’s Poo Powered Prisons (http://www.myweku.com/2011/12/rwandas-poo-powered-prisons/)

Devised by local fishermen and farmers, these wetlands served, in effect, as the natural sewage treatment plant for the city (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_Kolkata_Wetlands).

-*-

The [cambridge]Shire -- a hobbit village sit athrough frighteningly torrential wireless bandwidth
- post-ring dispatch [= love/desire of money/power] into the fires of evolutionary anachronism.

The love/desire of money, power, knowledge is dead.

The 'boson' class (Stabile - social impulse) defines the root basis to creation/evolution.

Social structure formation.

ADDer - emergence of a social organism.

Inevitable - given what we know of nature, and what we know of our historical incapacity to get along.

It was only ever a matter of time before a large red bus marked - enforcedly social - 'd come along.

Tendency to wisdom was my former suggestion - but with wisdom coming so late - it might have been enough
- but belt and braces approach -
killing off PFC neurochemical reward and putting in place ACC neurochemical reward through communication of best intentions ('right intention' etc)
- in telepathic communication between known individuals

- really would seal the deal.

Nice connection to the seemingly telepathic connection between birds when they fly in formation.

All makes sense.

-*-

But I can't verify telepathic communication by myself.

SB- After due consideration, I have decided that the addforums are a complete waste of time.
You have my private email address, and can contact me through that.
However, the masses here are totally unprepared to consider a new idea.
I have one or two posts to make, and then I will be terminating my time on these forums.
I have a method, previously used elsewhere, to ensure that my password is unrecoverable-- so from the point of view of the forums-- farewell.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 10:10 AM
Back to old favourite references:

http://m.today.duke.edu/2012/12/socialprimate

"The orbital frontal cortex, right above the eyes, was activated when calculating rewards to the self. The anterior cingulate sulcus in the middle of the top of the brain seemed to calculate giving up a reward. But both centers appear "divorced from social context," Platt said. A third area, the anterior cingulate gyrus (ACCg), seemed to "care a lot about what happened to the other monkey," Platt said"

SB_UK
10-23-13, 10:14 AM
Broadly speaking:
PFC reward system activation -> attention trained through standard verbal/numerical reasoning -> systematizing
ACC reward system activation -> attention trained through training attention on the sensory realm - as a mechanical mechanism of training attention towards empathic/telepathic communication - and hence being able to obtain reward via this, the social reward mechanism/system.

So - the whole mindful thing is actually about something completely different to what one might think it's about - upon first consideration.

It's like weight training - only to discover that when we're strong enough - a door which we didn't know existed previously - we now know exists - simply by virtue of being able to open it.

The stress of PFC (cognitive decline) is overcome - and is reversed - cognitive strengthening - with ACC reward system activation - in the presence of attentional capacity to that end.

IE you have to be able to 'tune in' (mindful attentional frame of mind) in order to reap reward system activation via the social reward system.

-*-

However - aren't ADDers simply predisposed to it ?
Well - we're not predisposed to PFC reward system activation - judging by my mention of no satisfaction from activities which should activate the PFC.

So ... why do we have to work at it so ?
Maybe we don't .

Maybe we can slip into the state easily - and it's mostly because we're thrashing our own minds to do PFC reward system behaviours - ie systematizing without any reward from systematizing - that we drive extreme stress - and suffer cognitive decline through stress.

So - what're you suggesting ?
It all still comes down to grand societal infrastructure rearrangement to remove social hierarchy - to allow us permission to step off the sytematizing bandwagon into collaborative working practices - we feel reward - and can then re-enter the systematizing domain
- generating systems - but only those which give us a sense of reward from knowing/seeing ALL others around us gaining benefit from them.

-*-

So - in this case - we're kinda' looking at the love/desire for knowledge being lost - and knowledge being retained - driven by a different reward system
- that is - no longer driven for selfish reasons - but driven through the honest desire of wanting what's best for all other people.

What's great is that we still get to retain use of the systematizing mind.

It just changes in its emphasis.

Tries to make life better - and not worse for all other people.

-*-

A social species beckons.

ana futura
10-23-13, 10:25 AM
I'm sensing that you're reacting aggressively towards an analysis of mindfulness ?
If you genuinely would like people to reap the rewards of it - I think that you'll benefit from finding the words to explain it to somebody who has no opinion on the technique.


No not at all. I'm very much supportive of a scientific (neurologically based) analysis of mindfulness, based on studies performed in a research environment. My problem is that this is not analysis, it's just repetitive chatter based solely on conjecture, and not informed by any of the available research. You don't have the familiarity with meditation practice necessary to be able to put things together like you are doing.

My frustration stems from the fact that that analysis already exists- there is much research out there, waiting for you to read. And if you actually spent some time doing the practice and reading about it, you'd realize what a waste of time this thread is.

I'm not a scientist, I can't pretend to be a scientist, The last science class I took was Botany, and all I remember is Pistils and Stamens. I read information intended for lay people, put it inside my brain in a fashion so that it makes sense to me, and I move on. I can't recall that information at will, nor do I have any desire to. But I have read enough to know that misinformation abounds in this conversation.

The precise mechanism you are looking for here, the "why" won't be discovered in this thread. There's thousands of dollars being funneled into meditation research right now, with the aim of finding out the precise answer to that question.

someothertime
10-23-13, 10:38 AM
Mind if I throw something in here.

Can I ask for opinions regarding "happy" states and detachment therein.

I totally get the neutralising of external stimuli via mindfullness as a means of maintaining stable energy.

I struggle a little with how, on a day to day level one should "detach" from extremely happy events and experiences.

Sure;

You get all worked up and excited, then eventually you gotta get grounded again ( come down )... I kinda get that.

How does any of you actively balance yourself in the face of real life true excitement and do you feel it is necessary? Or is it just a case of going with it too whilst not "fusing"/investing too much into the moment afterward?

Or from a more philosophical perspective, is happiness even good? Is not the ultimate aim to function in accordance with ones beliefs whilst preventing passing internal thoughts from interfering with experience. If so, why do I feel crap when I'm not happy? Is it just trying to live up to a false expectation inherited from social constructs? Jeez, someone invent a logic uptake inhibitor :giggle:

SB_UK
10-23-13, 10:58 AM
OP

http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=3490&Itemid=0&limit=1&limitstart=0
Thich Nhat Hanh on The Practice of Mindfulness
Haven't been able to find an explanation of meditation/mindfulness which resonates.
The chap referenced above appears to be considered highly.
My problem - I do the exact opposite of what he's describing.
So - I try and auto-pilot everything - because my mind is happy in auto-pilot.
So - mind in auto-pilot is like driving the car on an empty road. [relaxed]
Mind which is present - is like driving the car in a very slow moving traffic jam [irritating,road rage].
I'm trying to suggest that my mind is trying not to be mindful of what's actually happening - and that when it is mindful eg in a traffic jam where it's constantly operating - it's really unhappy.
So - there's something very wrong here - I'm advocating the exact opposite of the Buddhist expert above - and he's gotta' be right being an expert - but I just don't see how.
I like to dissociate/daydream/transcend - I like to overcome mind
- I kinda' think that when we bypass mind - we become in the present
- but I personally - have no recollection of what happens in the present - it's as though being in the present bypasses memory
- which I can explain 'd make sense.
Memory kinda' drags us into living in the past or future ... ... ...
Anyway something very wrong here.

Thread Conclusion
Mindfulness is actually about shifting attention away from verbal/numerical/systematizing focus onto sensory as surrogate for empathic focus for use in communication.
The two modes of reward system activation - where social [ACCs/g] [empathic] is higher than selfish reward system [PFC] [systematizing] activation.
That's the pattern of evolution - the right is the integral (species) of the left.
http://harmoniaphilosophica.files.wordpress.com/2013/05/wsb_384x242_2297169387_9eb20a229b.jpg
Evolution to complexity reveals itself through the general mechanism of forming 'species' from emergent properties - or forming a 'class' from an 'object' (emergent) ... ... and so the image 'd be - Adam followed by Eve followed by population ... ... regression to the mean between polar [synergistic] opposites of left (male archetype) and right (female archetype).

Now - what was the original post about ?
I'm not too sure I can place either of the 2 suggestions in the post above under the new description of mindfulness.

In the first - where I'm describing daydream - the focus of attention is simply whatever thought bubbles to the fore.
In the other - the way I read his description of mindfulness - it seemed to involve some level of verbal element.

So - I'm happy ?? that I understand mindfulness - but I'm not really happy with either of the 2 contrasting definitions of mindfulness in the OP - being even remotely useful in helping me to reach the understanding of mindfulness (which could yet be wrong)
- which I've described in this post.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 10:59 AM
... you'd realize what a waste of time this thread is.

:confused:

And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, and from idle chatter: This is called right speech.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 11:07 AM
The precise mechanism you are looking for here, the "why" won't be discovered in this thread. There's thousands of dollars being funneled into meditation research right now, with the aim of finding out the precise answer to that question.

Anybody with imagination can do it in a couple of minutes
- just have to negotiate around the choppy waters of unskillfully appropriated words.

SB_UK
10-23-13, 11:10 AM
Mind if I throw something in here.

Can I ask for opinions regarding "happy" states and detachment therein.

I totally get the neutralising of external stimuli via mindfullness as a means of maintaining stable energy.

I struggle a little with how, on a day to day level one should "detach" from extremely happy events and experiences.

Sure;

You get all worked up and excited, then eventually you gotta get grounded again ( come down )... I kinda get that.

How does any of you actively balance yourself in the face of real life true excitement and do you feel it is necessary? Or is it just a case of going with it too whilst not "fusing"/investing too much into the moment afterward?

Or from a more philosophical perspective, is happiness even good? Is not the ultimate aim to function in accordance with ones beliefs whilst preventing passing internal thoughts from interfering with experience. If so, why do I feel crap when I'm not happy? Is it just trying to live up to a false expectation inherited from social constructs? Jeez, someone invent a logic uptake inhibitor :giggle:

Enlightenment realises a monistic (bliss) state where before existed the duality of happiness/sadness

- and so the answer to the question 'd be - that the goal is to reach a state without the highs - and without the lows

- and without the lows -- the individual finds themself in a 'happy' place.

I think the terms are happy / sad -> bliss.

Lose the polar opposites and end up with something far better than either.

Think hyperglycaemia - it's hardly great
- hypoglycaemia is awful

-- normoglycaemia wins out.

ana futura
10-23-13, 11:16 AM
:confused:

This thread is chatter! It's Dukkha! It's wasted time! You and I could have spent this time actually meditating! I could have gone for a hike! You could have gone for a walk with your dog! Or you could have read something written by a professional who is better able to answer your question.

Every moment we waste on circular analysis or cerebral rumination is a moment wasted. These forums for the most part are a giant waste of time (as Barliman has alleged).

There are also nuggets of great wisdom here though. Mindfulness practice encourages you to pick up what's worth while, digest it, and go on your way.

When you work through emotions and past experiences in meditation, you don't "think" about them. You observe your thinking about them. Do this practice enough and you develop insight- you see things for what they are. I don't need to write a dozen threads on OMG I HAVE OCD/ GAD/ BP! etc.

I see those types of symptoms emerge in my life, I observe their true nature, I understand why they are there, I go on my way, those symtpoms lessen.

I didn't work through my anxiety by thinking or talking or deconstructing it. I worked through it by observing it, using extremely effective techniques developed over thousands of years.

That's al it is- cultivating awareness, culitvating observation, cultivating compassion- the traits that lead to insight. Insight is why meditation and mindfulness work. ADHD'ers (like everyone) lack insight. Mindfulness practice and meditation gives it to us.

ana futura
10-23-13, 11:22 AM
:confused: And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, and from idle chatter: This is called right speech.

"Abusive speech" (and idle chatter) is one of the main reasons I started meditating. If I didn't already have an issue with it, I wouldn't be talking about it with you.

Meditators are only people who have realized they have things to work on. If they were people who had nothing to work on, they wouldn't be meditators.

Also, I do not think that my speech was abusive. I do truly believe this thread is a giant waste of time. It's certainly wasted much of my time- I have gained nothing except frustration (at my inability to convey what I intend to you.) I have talked here for hours- nothing has come of it. I should have gone for a hike.

ana futura
10-23-13, 11:31 AM
Mind if I throw something in here.

Can I ask for opinions regarding "happy" states and detachment therein.

I totally get the neutralising of external stimuli via mindfullness as a means of maintaining stable energy.

I struggle a little with how, on a day to day level one should "detach" from extremely happy events and experiences.

Sure;

You get all worked up and excited, then eventually you gotta get grounded again ( come down )... I kinda get that.

How does any of you actively balance yourself in the face of real life true excitement and do you feel it is necessary? Or is it just a case of going with it too whilst not "fusing"/investing too much into the moment afterward?

Or from a more philosophical perspective, is happiness even good? Is not the ultimate aim to function in accordance with ones beliefs whilst preventing passing internal thoughts from interfering with experience. If so, why do I feel crap when I'm not happy? Is it just trying to live up to a false expectation inherited from social constructs? Jeez, someone invent a logic uptake inhibitor :giggle:

How long have you been meditating for? Did you check out that Lorin Roche article I posted? He brings up a lot of good points.

This is why a word like "detachment" is problematic. You aren't detaching, you are fully engaging. The idea is that when you fully immerse yourself in the moment, you cant cling to it. A good moment is good, while it lasts, then it is gone. So enjoy it to the fullest while it is here. Do that enough, and a lot of neutral things become enjoyable- making coffee, doing laundry, talking to your loved ones. You see how there are happiness producing moments all around you that you take for granted.

But bad moments are still bad. They suck. But they only last as long as they do, they don't linger after the fact. The thing is, the longer you practice meditation for, the less bad moments you seem to have.

And when others have bad moments- you can better be there for them. You can focus your attention wholly on them, giving them the love and attention they need, making their bad moments a little less bad.

If I experience something awesome- I go for it. I try to be as in the moment as possible. I try to savor it. And then, when it's over, I try to let it go and direct my attention to whatever is in front of me then. The afterward part is what's important. But you aren't letting it go with intention, you are just always shifting your attention to what's in front of you. The letting it go part happens on it's own.

someothertime
10-23-13, 11:49 AM
Thanks heaps ana... Not long at all... I will check out the video's tommorrow during my library time.

I truly get almost everything you say... It's just the extreme happiness/excitement that I struggle to resolve... Then again... I guess you can embrace the come down presently too ( if indeed that is what appears )...


So yeah... I guess the only way for me to truly know is to practise both... Strange thing is... They both sound right....


If I experience something awesome- I go for it. I try to be as in the moment as possible. I try to savor it. And then, when it's over, I try to let it go and direct my attention to whatever is in front of me then.


I think the terms are happy / sad -> bliss.

Lose the polar opposites and end up with something far better than either.

ana futura
10-23-13, 12:16 PM
I have found that the "nature" of my bliss changes with time spent meditating.

I no longer get the hyper "OMG Wheeeee! this is so fun! Disneyland! Yay! type of experiences. I mean, if I did go to Disneyland I would still have a good time, but I wouldn't be running around like an insane person, making my friends miserable dragging them from ride to ride.

After meditation I will do something like look at the snow fall, or observe a blade of grass, and be filled with immense joy. Those tiny moments- they never cease. The world is full of them.

Crap moments- I dunno. I went through a horrible experience in the middle of my training. I spent a lot of time with a close friend in the hospital. It sucked, but I was really there for her. My fear didn't get in the way. It was sort of more painful in the moment, but I could also experience more- just the joy of spending time with her, being surrounded by nurses and machines and the idea of death did not matter. But crap did I cry- more than I ever have. I think that was truly the saddest I have ever been. But it was good. I'm not sure how to describe it exactly.

Baal Moom
10-30-13, 08:37 PM
Apporogies! This is a long post. At very least the first paragraph can be safely skipped, I think, but I’m too vain to delete it.

I hope my idiot-layman opinion will be of some use. I’m not clever, I couldn’t give a rat’s bottom about the philosophicalistic aspect of meditation -- literally couldn’t, as I didn’t understand any of it, and still don’t understand most of it, if any at all. I’ve tried reading one of Kabat-Zinn’s books, but it was written in Etruscan! All that talk about the “undercurrents of the soul generating hidden waves” (paraphrasing)... Cheesus, man. I didn’t realise we lived in a fantasy novel.

Anyway, maybe my experience as an idiot who has been meditating for three years will be of some use to the mentally underchallenged. You think too much. For the most part I’ve been practising something like mindfulness of breathing (I’ve written somewhat contradictory accounts elsewhere on the forums. It’s a bit complicated -- to me -- I’ll explain once I’ve sorted it out in my mind). I’m not sure where it stands compared with the sort of mindfulness Ana has written about (ah be stupid, ah towja), but I’ve been able to reap most of the benefits she’s written about -- especially after I started using the greater ability to concentrate, spread my attention and let go, which I had acquired by observing my breath, to become more aware of my surroundings and my thoughts between meditation sessions (this is a terrible sentence. Sorry). Ach, the point, which I will write right now before it’s forgotten, is that I try not to think about it much. Anyway, how many monks do you need to tell you that meditation is “moah about plactice, less about phirosophy” before you intelnalise it? I don’t know how I know what to do! I couldn’t understand the instructions, and trying to figure out the (seemingly to me) self-contradictory phirosophy all them buddha-like chaps espoused made my head hurt and my practice even more uncertain. For me, uncertainty has been the bane of meditation, and I reckon that to a great extent uncertainty was generated by thought.

It’s sorcery. My first breakthrough was when I decided just to sit on my **s. No technique, no nothing. Just sit, back straight (so I don’t fall asleep), eyes closed (not sure it’s necessary), for half an hour every day for some… weeks or months. I forget. It’s hard for me to explain what exactly happened during that half hour. First of all, I can’t remember that well; secondly, I ain’t that articulate. But anyway, it was positive for a while, and after some time I tried to observe my breath again, and realised it’s become considerably easier to do so. There’s more to it than that -- I’ve done a lot of silly stuff and have experienced some a***-bu**ering times, and I strongly suggest that anyone thinking of starting to practice meditation consults a meditation-friendly mental health professional (not a shaman)and keep in touch with them throughout the process. As I have said, I don’t know what I do. I sit, I observe, whatever that means, and it works. Halleluja. Seemingly I’ve come to practice mindfulness of breathing more or less the way I’ve been instructed to, but I couldn’t say for sure. It took years, and the only thing I can sort of say almost for sure is that the biggest breakthroughs and the best meditation experiences have occurred when a) I put more emphasis on the practice, and less on thinking about the practice, and b) I was able to expect less. I’m not a saint at all, and I’m still as jobless as a cadavre, but life feels immensely better now, and I have hope for the future. And I’m not as bad a person as I used to be, I hope. How can I perform an exercise I don’t understand? F*** if I knows. The body understands, what can I say. Maybe the subconscious is clever like that. “I” just try to allow the stuff to sort of “settle in”. It’s still difficult not to hijack the meditation with attempts to figure out “how to do it better”. It is what it is, I think. Whatever it is.

I hope this hasn’t been a big pile of steaming bo***cks, and that someone may find a nugget of sense in what I’ve written. Most importantly though, see mental health professionals and don’t quit your drugs to meditate. Anyone suggests that without solid reasons -- punch ‘em in the face. Tell ‘em its a special delivery from Uncle Andrey in Israel. (Yes, my legal name is out. Rejoice, identity thieves.)

SB_UK
10-31-13, 02:05 PM
How can I perform an exercise I don’t understand?

That's the exact question I've been raising.
How do we know if we're doing it right - might we be kidding ourselves placebo-style into believing that it's working ?

I guess the larger question 'd be - if we live life under constant stress why'd 30 minutes respite from the stress switching the verbal mind off - have any effect.

I mean that's 11 1/2 hours of stress, to 1/2 hour stress free
- shouldn't a night's sleep - ie time away from the verbal mind - have the same effect as meditation for an equivalent time.

Almost every link I've seen points to the stress-relief aspect of meditation.

Right from the start of this thread - I've suggested that there's a better way to relieve stress - and that's to crash the global economic system.

Now ... ... I think the relaxed state of mind without stress might be akin to the meditative state of mind ... ... but it'd be easier a state to catch in a fair society

- I find that whenever I try and meditate - intrusive thoughts relating to whatever's stressing me out at the time - pop to the fore.

That is - that the meditative state of mind, might be the default state of mind in a world without di stressors ? is my question
- and that pushing that state of mind in a world which hasn't been corrected (ie in which inequality escalates at a violent rate)

'd somehow represent shirking our responsibility to make the world a better place.

You know - stealing your neigbour's dinner instead of making your own - as meditation in the absence of societal change.

sarek
10-31-13, 03:29 PM
The importance of meditation becomes strikingly clear when we realise that unless we change ourselves, we won't be able to change the world around us.

Meditation and self awareness allows us to keep better track of what we do and why we do that.
It shows us our mechanicalness and our automated responses, which take most of our free will away from us. Such self knowledge is our only hope of ever being able to make a change.

SB_UK
10-31-13, 03:34 PM
The importance of meditation becomes strikingly clear when we realise that unless we change ourselves, we won't be able to change the world around us.

Meditation and self awareness allows us to keep better track of what we do and why we do that.
It shows us our mechanicalness and our automated responses, which take most of our free will away from us. Such self knowledge is our only hope of ever being able to make a change.

Can't we just engage reflective/contemplative thought ?

sarek
10-31-13, 03:38 PM
Can't we just engage reflective/contemplative thought ?

No that won't be enough. People will for the most part respond automatically to both internal and external stimuli so the outcome of any event is pretty much a foregone conclusion(even though chaos dynamics won't allow us to predict it)

People are for the most part mechanical and can not readily respond in any other way than they do. That goes for you and me, and for everyone else.

The original purpose of pretty much all kinds of meditation is to acquire sufficient self knowledge to be able to change that automatic behaviour and increase willpower.

Baal Moom
10-31-13, 06:03 PM
SB, as Ana has already said, there are studies of meditation. It's quite a bit more than "30 minutes of respite". Dig around. As to your point about saving the world... See Sarek. Since I started meditating, I've been able to do progressively more for others and for myself. It's a good tool. Would you throw out literacy because it stands in the way of memorisation? I you can read, you may face more information and ultimately know more. If you can do more, you may do more. Beyond that, seeing as many of us have very serious personal matters poisoning their lives, and I'd reckon have no hope of saving the world in their state, it would seem sensible to me for them to save themselves first. Maybe then they'll be able to turn their attention to "changing the economic system". And if not, at least their life won't be hell on earth any more, and maybe they'll help a person or two.

Intruding thoughts are okay. It's part of the process. Haven't you been told this?

EDIT: As for the placebo effect -- if it works, does it matter? But I'll tell you what, first year of meditation I stubburnly didn't believe it worked. I'm mental like that. An entire year, maybe even longer. the process seemed like complete nonsense to me, even though I could see the changes. I kept on doing it because there were benefits -- and because stopping made me extremely ill (djyou know you can be addicted to meditation? Oh, fun times). It was beneficial, though less, even when I walked around asking myself "does it work?! Will it work this time?! Maybe it's nonsense?!". Doesn't seem like the regular placebo pattern to me.

SB_UK
11-01-13, 04:49 PM
The original purpose of pretty much all kinds of meditation is to acquire sufficient self knowledge

But meditation/mindfulness involve switching off the 'verbal/numeric' mind ie focus on breath, body scanning, sensations etc

- you can't acquire self knowledge through eliminating words ?

I guess you could calm yourself down using that technique - which'd certainly be useful ... ... but I'm still only seeing stress-relief as the potential benefit of meditation.

And there's a better way to stress relief - which is due to occur imminently - which'll involve a complete collapse in the global economic system.

Daily stories these days on global QE, house prices exploding, interest rates collapsing, debt levels increasing ... ...
money won't be around for much longer

- and dependent on the replacement system - we could well be in a state of zero environmental ie zero absolute di(stress) as soon as the collapse occurs.

SB_UK
11-01-13, 04:54 PM
"changing the economic system".

As such though, you don't need to turn your attention to changing it - it's due to collapse all by itself - it'd be nice though if people could see that the collapse is inevitable - nothing else is required.

The replacement system will arise as soon as people see that money fails unless there's a perpetual exponential growth in the human population.

SB_UK
11-01-13, 04:58 PM
http://www.postcarbon.org/article/40417-exponential-money-in-a-finite-world

Within the next twenty years, the most profound changes in all of economic history will sweep the globe. The economic chaos and turbulence we are now experiencing are merely the opening salvos in what will prove to be a long, disruptive period of adjustment. Our choices now are to either evolve a new economic model that is compatible with limited physical resources, or to risk a catastrophic failure of our monetary system, and with it the basis for civilization as we know it today.
In order to understand why, we must start at the beginning. While it was operating well, our monetary system was a great system, one that fostered incredible technological innovation and advances in standards of living, two characteristics that I fervently wish to continue. But every system has its pros and its cons, and our monetary system has a doozy of a flaw.
It is this: Our monetary system must continually expand, forever.


In summary, because our economic model and our entire system of money enforce a doctrine of limitless growth, they have become anachronisms incompatible with the well-being of the planet on which we live and depend. Our global money system might be complicated, and it might be sophisticated, but it is soon to be a vestige of the past.

SB_UK
11-01-13, 05:02 PM
So, if it's soon to be a vestige of the past - why not wait ?
Because we're on the clock.

We don't have the time to wait.

We need a new system so that we can salvage something out of our lives.

After the horrors of capitalism running rife from the 70's onwards - we're about due a period of respite.

It had better come quick - but for no reason other than a selfish one - of wanting to see what a fair world might look like
- and finally being allowed the freedom to exhale.

amberwillow
11-01-13, 06:27 PM
So, (respectfully) why are you waiting?

I ask because I really think you missed the significance of this:

(Quote from Baal Moom)
Beyond that, seeing as many of us have very serious personal matters poisoning their lives, and I'd reckon have no hope of saving the world in their state, it would seem sensible to me for them to save themselves first. Maybe then they'll be able to turn their attention to "changing the economic system". And if not, at least their life won't be hell on earth any more, and maybe they'll help a person or two.

sarek
11-01-13, 06:43 PM
I want to add to what amberwillow said. Mindfulness(which if i recall rightly was the original topic of this thread) is not about the exoteric level, the outside world. Its about the esoteric level, the inside of a person.

SB_UK
11-03-13, 08:39 AM
So, (respectfully) why are you waiting?

I ask because I really think you missed the significance of this:

(Quote from Baal Moom)

Waiting's over when people realise the inevitability of global economic collapse.

No - we don't need to 'fix ourselves' and then to 'fix economic system'
- it's the other way around.

Fix economic system -> and we 'fix'.

-*-

Very simply.

ADDers feed off social reward.
No social reward in a world of money - because all people are busy pushing their neighbour's down to get ahead.
Type of mind 'learnt' - which cannot obtain social reward.
Zero social reward - ADDers take reward (dexedrine) in a bottle.

Remove economic system (social inequality) and you'll remove the impediment to ADDers obtaining social reward.
Attaining social reward - ADDers will be fixed.

-*-

So - quite simply - it's the other way around.

There's no chance of the ADDer becoming fixed, until the ADDer's reward system is capable of functioning -- and the ADDer obtaining reward.
This can only happen when people's minds are appropriately orientated.

At this current point in human history - we're looking at a world in which we see triumph of the psychopath/sociopath/non-empathizing systematizer.

So - the lawyer, banker, mathematician.

None of these people are driven by the desire to make a better world - for other people.

Though of course - they'll all say they do - when asked.

SB_UK
11-03-13, 08:40 AM
Or very simply

- there's no reward for us (what we need to be fixed) in a world of social inequality (a world of law/money).

Surely it's fairly clear that 15 minutes concentrating on the sensation of breathing isn't going to generate any sense of reward.

At best - I guess we're looking at calming down by concentrating on breathing deeply ? which I think most people know results in relaxing the stressed state down - breathing naturally increases when we're stressed - I think that slowing it down - results in a calming of the stressed state.
In the non-breathing meditations - I guess we're just learning not to think about 'stuff' which stresses us out - and so preventing our own rumination on fears from degrading our performance.

-*-

It doesn't matter if you're anxious or chilled about that bullet coming straight for your forehead.
It's more important to stop the guy whose firing at you - from doing so again.

Greeting your imminent demise with grace - is perhaps more becoming - but overall - I wouldn't say there's much in it.

I'd argue that some level of anxiety is important in driving the individual to change his situation.
No anxiety - and there's no motivation for change.
Too much anxiety - and the individual's crippled in their capacity to bring about change.

But - ultimately - from everything that I've seen about ADHD - the ADDer is crippled in aspects of life which relate to money
- ie not being able to finish this degree - required for money, not being able to arrive on time for this job - required for money

-- and so all I'm suggesting - is that by eliminating 'required for money for survival' - will automatically life one level of impediment experienced by ADDer, a state of mind then welcomed in which the second impediment (social reward) suffered by ADDer can be remedied.

-*-

Even more simply - there is NO way to fix yourself as an ADDer. You need reward. That reward comes from your relationship with other people (Attunement). You need a world which is attunement-possible to become fixed. That's the root to the ADDer disorder - and there's no real way to solve ADD other than by tackling that fundamental causal basis to the ADDer condition.

So - [1] Reduce disorder by eliminating ADDers from the environment (need to obtain a school certificate/job to earn money to survive
[2] In that world - watch on as social reward (attunement between people) nourishes the ADD neurochemical reward system.

Meditation/Mindfulness will come naturally in stage [2]
- trying to acquire meditation/mindful state of mind without removing the individual from (di)stressor, creating a new societal infrastructure, and obtaining social reward

- will have some minor benefits - but I'm suggesting a mechanism of restoring complete mental functionality.

SB_UK
11-03-13, 09:02 AM
In 1 sentence.

You need reward - dexedrine is reward in a bottle - ADDer reward comes from social interaction/attunement - straight meditation won't activate your reward system - but change to a properly social (equality of material ownership) societal infrastructure can.

Baal Moom
11-03-13, 12:01 PM
You have no idea what meditation is, yet you pass sweeping judgement. You write as if you haven't read what we've written. You show stubborness and unwillingness to learn, and frankly, this thread seems to me like an excuse to push your idea of a perfect world. This is indecent behaviour. I'm out.

What is your point, anyway? Paradise is imminent, so don't try to improve your life? I'd rather have a time out from hell right now than keep on waiting. What, having relief right now will mess up the new world order?

SB_UK
11-03-13, 12:15 PM
You have no idea what meditation is, yet you pass sweeping judgement. You write as if you haven't read what we've written. You show stubborness and unwillingness to learn, and frankly, this thread seems to me like an excuse to push your idea of a perfect world. This is indecent behaviour. I'm out.

What is your point, anyway? Paradise is imminent, so don't try to improve your life? I'd rather have a time out from hell right now than keep on waiting. What, having relief right now will mess up the new world order?

Exercise isn't of any real benefit to the individual within context of man, if the fit person uses his newfound strength to wrestle handbags off little old ladies on dark street corners.

someothertime
11-05-13, 10:00 PM
I want to add to what amberwillow said. Mindfulness(which if i recall rightly was the original topic of this thread) is not about the exoteric level, the outside world. Its about the esoteric level, the inside of a person.

In practice ( implementation ) I tend to agree. The better you get, I feel, the more it becomes a symbiosis between the two. Each feeding each other.