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  #16  
Old 05-31-15, 08:10 PM
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Talking Re: ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

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Originally Posted by sarek View Post
...
3. Disclaimer: This is highly personal. My experiences do not necessarily mean anything at all to another person. ...
...


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  #17  
Old 05-31-15, 08:24 PM
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Re: ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

I think I just have bad Kamma.

I have the distinct feeling that I was royalty or some sort of nobility in my past life.
I was probably an *******
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Old 05-31-15, 08:37 PM
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Re: ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

More than once I have thought that the last 14 yrs (or perhaps only the last 5 yrs depending upon on how it's perceived) are my Dark Night of the Soul and that I really should read it. I am a Christian so St. John of the Cross ans I have common ground.
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  #19  
Old 09-03-15, 04:12 AM
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Re: ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

Dude, this hits home. I study Tibetan Buddhism. I strongly admire the Dalai Lama and as I have received teachings from him (also held his hand), I consider him a guru, along with Jangtse Chojey and Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
I am considering stopping my Adderall medication for points mentioned above -- continuing to take this medication strongly gives me the impression that there is something wrong with my natural mental state, but real awareness persists through that. And I have strong confidence that what started out as a "disorder" would turn into its own type of intelligence if I was settled in it appropriately. Of course, this is hard for my psychiatrist to understand or believe, so I feel a little on my own with this.

Anyway, I think ADDers can be surprisingly sensitive and spiritually aware. Don't mean to push any buttons but I would argue that these teachers have ADD:

--Jangtse Chojey
--Lama Zopa Rinpoche
--Chogyam Trungpa
--Khandro-la
--Phuntsok Rinpoche (age 12)
--Yangtsi Rinpoche (he agrees)

WHAT DO OTHER PEOPLE THINK OF THIS?

And other besides. i admire the character and work of all of these teachers. And when I say I can perceive ADD stuff in them, I don't mean that as a diss but just as how it is. I think many Rinpoche's have this....... I swear this culture is just messed up in its values.
It's really hard to figure out whether I should be on them or off of them when I am dealing with these contrasting perspectives.

I might be in my own world as an ADHD person, but maybe it help foster a kind of detachment. I feel I have achieved that kind of detachment even with meds. I think my spiritual progress could be easier without them at this point. I don't generally talk about spiritual stuff publicly but... I feel like I am supposed to be letting go and instead I'm taking these meds and holding on. It's so confusing.
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  #20  
Old 09-04-15, 04:10 AM
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Re: ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

A great many of the people whom I have encountered on the spiritual path are neurodiverse in some way or another. It is actually quite rare to find a neurotypical person finding this direction.

I can see two reasons why this is so:

1. Neurodiversity dramatically increases the challenge level, and so accelerates the learning curve.
2. There seems to be something about the wiring of our brain that makes many spiritual practices easier. One exception I have personally found is that so far my ADD driven impatience has made meditation very difficult for me.
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  #21  
Old 09-04-15, 06:28 PM
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Re: ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

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Originally Posted by adhdseeker View Post
Dude, this hits home. I study Tibetan Buddhism. I strongly admire the Dalai Lama and as I have received teachings from him (also held his hand), I consider him a guru, along with Jangtse Chojey and Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
I am considering stopping my Adderall medication for points mentioned above -- continuing to take this medication strongly gives me the impression that there is something wrong with my natural mental state, but real awareness persists through that. And I have strong confidence that what started out as a "disorder" would turn into its own type of intelligence if I was settled in it appropriately. Of course, this is hard for my psychiatrist to understand or believe, so I feel a little on my own with this.

Anyway, I think ADDers can be surprisingly sensitive and spiritually aware. Don't mean to push any buttons but I would argue that these teachers have ADD:

--Jangtse Chojey
--Lama Zopa Rinpoche
--Chogyam Trungpa
--Khandro-la
--Phuntsok Rinpoche (age 12)
--Yangtsi Rinpoche (he agrees)

WHAT DO OTHER PEOPLE THINK OF THIS?

And other besides. i admire the character and work of all of these teachers. And when I say I can perceive ADD stuff in them, I don't mean that as a diss but just as how it is. I think many Rinpoche's have this....... I swear this culture is just messed up in its values.
It's really hard to figure out whether I should be on them or off of them when I am dealing with these contrasting perspectives.

I might be in my own world as an ADHD person, but maybe it help foster a kind of detachment. I feel I have achieved that kind of detachment even with meds. I think my spiritual progress could be easier without them at this point. I don't generally talk about spiritual stuff publicly but... I feel like I am supposed to be letting go and instead I'm taking these meds and holding on. It's so confusing.
I suspect you are right about many of the Rinpoches, however many of the Tibetans are very traumatised- both physically and emotionally.

This talk by Lama Yeshe, clearly shows an enormous number of physical signs of "cerebellar cognitive affective sydrome"- which is now recognised as a driver of many of the symptoms in ADHD. However Yeshe was an enormously lucid teacher.



Note the difficulty he has in initiating his speech, the frequent pauses and word finding difficulty, the grimacing and the microsaccading of his eyes.
These are all indicative of very significant neurological impairment of the same type that is associated with ADHD.
However Yeshe was a remarkably gifted teacher and very much loved by all his students. He certainly had none of the emotional impulsiveness and explosiveness that is such an issue in ADHD.
I have always admired his teachings, and admire them even more now I see the difficulties he has transcended.

My own teacher is well known for his impulsive changes of direction- which leave those doing the organising of his institute flat footed and struggling to keep up very often. However he is a very scholarly man.
It is inspiring to see the way he can combine his knowledge and his ability to go off on tangents to recombine thoughts in a new and stimulating way.

One of the Dalai Lama's favorite authors Shantideva- was not at all popular at university as he never turned up to class, and slept all day, and appeared to never do any work. However he surprised everyone with his re-combination of the teachings into one of the classics of Buddhist literature.It is worth listening to Pema Chodron talking about his story on You Tube-- it is really funny.

I dont see any contradiction in taking the medications- they help me be a kinder and more positive person if I work at it.

The path in Buddhist mind training involves training in the three disciplines of wisdom, ethical (kind) behaviour, and attentional stability.

It is understood now that cognition and memory are assisted in anyone who can take stimulants without side effects, and it is also understood that neuroplastic brain change is dependent on focussed attention at the task at hand.

I can think of many occasions where my ADHD has left me irritable and unpleasant to be with, and where I have said and done unkind things. SO I have no problem with using the medications to help me move away from those aspects of the Dark Night of The Soul.
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  #22  
Old 09-05-15, 01:33 AM
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Re: ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

Quote:
Originally Posted by Explosions in the Sky
This great evil - where's it come from?
How'd it steal into the world?
What seed, what root did it grow from?
Who's doing this?
Who's killing us, robbing us of life and light, mocking us with the sight of what we mighta known?
Does our ruin benefit the earth, aid the grass to grow and the sun to shine?
Is this darkness in you, too?
Have you passed through this night?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kunga Dorji View Post
One way is "The Way of Affect"- or emotionality.
Johnston describes individuals following this path as going through a turbulent "Dark Night of The Soul" in which we flip from kind, loving and positive behaviour, to slumping back into chaos. However- every time we fall, we get back up again. This stage can go on a long time- but it realy is the penultimate stage in spiritual growth. After that-- "the big E".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalai Lama
The point is to be happy
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Seuss
It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kunga Dorji
- we fall over, then we get up, observe and try again- a little the wiser each time.
Learning through repetition.
Each time simplifying until we arrive at the simplest workable cerebellar automatising mechanism and we have learnt - further practice improves quality.

So - we have repetition training intrinsic quality.
This is true for walking and building the mind.

The mind is a model of understanding which strives towards the scientific model of simplest explanatory model - making it a natural equivalent to learning to walk.

Learning to walk - movement in external space
Learning to use the mind - movement in internal space.
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  #23  
Old 09-08-15, 12:01 AM
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Re: ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

Quote:
Originally Posted by adhdseeker View Post
Dude, this hits home.
Anyway, I think ADDers can be surprisingly sensitive and spiritually aware.
WHAT DO OTHER PEOPLE THINK OF THIS?


I might be in my own world as an ADHD person, but maybe it help foster a kind of detachment. I feel I have achieved that kind of detachment even with meds. I think my spiritual progress could be easier without them at this point. I don't generally talk about spiritual stuff publicly but... I feel like I am supposed to be letting go and instead I'm taking these meds and holding on. It's so confusing.
ADHDSEEKER - I'm curious how you happened upon this thread? Random question, I know. Just curious, pretty fascinating topic as all.

My goodness, such a big topic, but I have wondered about ADDers being old souls as well. Never new how to address it or start a thread about it. Very interesting indeed.

I like what Sarek said "3. Disclaimer: This is highly personal. My experiences do not necessarily mean anything at all to another person. This also means that we can not talk about such a thing as karma in relation to the world outside. It applies strictly to the individual him/herself. I can speak about my own karma, but not about yours or anybody else's. The esoteric path is about looking inside, not outside."

I could imagine that because our paths are all different, no one will perceive it all the same. Hence, difference in religious beliefs, convictions, idealism, etc. No right or wrong answer can be diffinitive for all.

But back to the original question of the thread... I find it interesting to wonder if ADDers/ADHDers can be old souls. I've thought of it so often, wondered if we are going through our lives/experiences like flipping through pages of a book, to get to the parts that we skipped over or didn't get the whole idea of before (learning the lesson) moving to the next chapter. Almost like living an incomplete life because we fully didn't experience it (get the lesson) fully the first time around. So we have a "groundhog day" type life, where we will experience lives over and over until we "get the lesson" so to speak. Dejavu anyone??

Gosh, I know what I'm trying to say, but I may not be typing it out how my mind thinks it.

I find that just "being" in the moment and not trying "to be" anything, is what really helps experience huge breakthroughs in life. Such as how ADD is considered a "disorder" or "mental illness" or whatever the label may be... Now us ADDers are put into a category that is not how an NT person is like, means there is something "wrong" with our brains to the point that we need medication to "BE" like an NT. But what is an NT? Could they be young souls who are newer souls? Or are they older souls on their final journey, having life be a breeze and only having few struggles?

I would like to believe that the more we can "be: ourselves (without being driven by the ego) we can actually live a life of grace and ease. However because there is such a separation of who we are in this world to one another, be it, religious, spirituality, mentality, ect. one will constantly be in a struggle to "fit in" to society as to be "normal". Even though, IMHO, we all have our own paths, our own destiny, our own truths, our own normal.

Fascinating thread.
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  #24  
Old 04-15-18, 01:09 AM
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Re: ADHD, Old Souls and The Dark Night of The Soul

Quote:
Originally Posted by adhdseeker View Post
Dude, this hits home. I study Tibetan Buddhism.--------

I am considering stopping my Adderall medication for points mentioned above -- continuing to take this medication strongly gives me the impression that there is something wrong with my natural mental state,

but real awareness persists through that.
After a few years I have had some more thoughts- and happened to find this post.

Firstly what do you mean by mind and your mental state?
The rough model of gross mind, subtle mind and very subtle mind of which HHTDL speaks is very useful.

I have had some episodes of being very ill in the last 2 years- when my back goes out, I am precipitated into a very real hell of sweating, restlessness, inability to eat, inability to sleep (the worst was 3 days with no sleep at all. When this happens I am usually too fatigued to meditate, and cant do much of anything except lie still. The sensory integration goes and sound is bombarding and annoying, I cant sit and entertain myself writing fancy posts, and I struggle to pull my weight with even basic housework.

Gradually though I have come to understand that there is a deeper layer. Beyond all that crud, there is a deeper and clearer mind watching. When I understand that enough to work with it, all the physical suffering is like a slightly dirty windscreen. You can focus past it and it is not really all that hard.

So the basic Buddhist position (or my incomplete understanding of it) would have it that mind and consciousness can exist independently of the body, and that the consciousness that is conditioned by the body (gross mind) is very much like the idea of a fully alert driver driving down the road in a rainstorm with a dirty windscreen trying to avoid an accident. (I'm quite proud of that -LOL)

Now it is clear that ADHD is a disorder that resides deep in the brain at the brainstem, an area outside of conscious control (unless you are very skilled). We have evidence of poor blood supply to the brain when standing upright or sitting up, and we have evidence that stimulants improve that. I am probably going to implode when I have to summarise all the papers and abstracts that have come my way of late.)

The symptoms i described above are the very extreme end of some of the processes that I am describing here.

Now if your brain is not getting enough blood and your consciousness is clouded, and you are in a permanent stress response- you will not see the world clearly unless you are very near fully awake. You will be clumsy, you will be irritable, you will be a danger on the roads, you will upset those closest to you.

So here is the point-- stimulants do not treat the mind at all. They teat apart of the body called the brain, which some brainless people call the mind.

However, we exist in the world and we need these bodies to turn our intentions into outcomes.

So- in answer to the stimulant question:
Its not all about you, or all about me.
We all know that the ADHD impacts both ourselves and others, including people we care about.
So- if the impact on our functioning is positive, then our taking them is an act of compassion to everyone, including ourselves. It is probably a genuine expression of bodhichitta (note to self must go study more tonight in case I got that wrong).

Now I also know 100% that unless I am in good physical shape- stimulants help me meditate better. Sometimes it is a good thing to push it even when you feel terrible and try and meditate with not extra help

As I said this is a late answer, but I have a little more direct experience and i do not think a Tibetan teacher would recommend you go against your doctors recommendations. They might offer you the services of a Tibetan doctor.

Now of all the psychotropic agents stimulants are unusual. If there are no side effects all they do is allow you to concentrate better in the real world. They don't tell you what to do with your perceptions.
SSRI antidepressants- different matter. They numb many peoples perceptions and make them less aware. Antipsychotics- even worse.

Quote:
And I have strong confidence that what started out as a "disorder" would turn into its own type of intelligence if I was settled in it appropriately. Of course, this is hard for my psychiatrist to understand or believe, so I feel a little on my own with this.
I think you are right-but the average psychiatrist will be out of his depth here

A few things come to mind
Re its own type of intelligence; "The fool who persists with his foolishness will eventually become wise." That implies persistence on the one course of foolishness and not getting sidetracked."

Secondly, we usually turn away from suffering and try and either deny it or paper it over. When we learn to change direction and face it head on we actually learn enough about it to make progress.

The "programming" in ADHD is rather peculiar- our attention is unstable so we can't chose to not think about aspects of ourselves that we do not like. We can't pretend, as the"neurotypical" do that our sh*t dont stink.

In terms of the micromanagement aspects of behaviour, we are too forgetful to lie successfully! and too inattentive and disorganised to remember to stick our heads in the same bucket of sand when we screw up. It is virtually impossible for us to sweep it under the carpet if we hurt someone.

Yes, we are often lost in a deep forest, but we are too restless to just wait there to be rescued, and too disorganised to ever try the same escape route twice.

The simple concept of sheer random luck suggests that we might be likely to make progress.



Quote:
And other besides. i admire the character and work of all of these teachers. And when I say I can perceive ADD stuff in them, I don't mean that as a diss but just as how it is. I think many Rinpoche's have this....... I swear this culture is just messed up in its values.


It's really hard to figure out whether I should be on them or off of them when I am dealing with these contrasting perspectives.

I might be in my own world as an ADHD person, but maybe it help foster a kind of detachment. I feel I have achieved that kind of detachment even with meds. I think my spiritual progress could be easier without them at this point. I don't generally talk about spiritual stuff publicly but... I feel like I am supposed to be letting go and instead I'm taking these meds and holding on. It's so confusing.
See above. Meditation takes a certain amount of work- and you need to be in good shape for that. Sitting on your bum with a head full of mud because you forgot your medications.

For reference- re the specifically Buddhist aspects (which are boring if you are not that way inclined)
ADHD diagnosed age 45 in 2007- started taking dexamphetamine as prescribed
Early 2010- gained an entry level qualification in a Vipassana based psychotherapy technique
late 2013 formal (low level) qualification as a Buddhist meditation teacher in a group run by a Tibetan Rinpoche
late 2015- severe relapse of bipolar dormant for about 25 years

Now- April 2018
Doing well, stimulant requirement quite intermittent
Late 2010 took refuge and was given this name

Ow this is not some kind of CV or anything- but as I was finishing this post I realised "I've effectively been given a qualification as a Tibetan Buddhist meditation teacher while still on "training wheels" for my own attention (dexamphetamine).

Too funny.

However, I have been groping towards this idea some time-- these people are very practical. They look at results- and the results they are looking for is to see those they work with become more kind and more skillful. Definitions like "being on stimulants" may well be seen by them as totally beside the point.

Your point about our culture was well taken.

One of the more screwed up aspects of it is this ridiculous idea that the utility of medications as effective, as easily managed,and as cheap as medical stimulants should be confused with the absurd war against drugs propaganda that has got everyone so scared of them.

---- its tough isn't it--you are on this spiritual, non violent path and then you have to deal with idiocy like this. This is not a trivial matter- all of us will have felt uneasy about being on stimulants. We all will have felt the need to apologise for it-- but the memes that make us all so apprehensive have been transmitted by a subset of the population known as "the clueless but always right"

We really must be old souls-- because there is something seriously wrong with them.
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I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.

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