So scared

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Re: So scared

Postby PeterB » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:51 am

So Hannze you are offering "higher teachings " not accessable to the rest of us ?
That explains a lot... :rofl:

let us address the issues that are described to us, not impose interpretations from our own cultural background.
jmeff wrote:When I was 14 I got into zen very intensly with no teacher. I read all sorts of buddist books meditated hours and hours a day. I had some amazing experiences in the beggining. Then when I was 16 I had an experience of complete seperation Some people call it depersonalization. Following that experience I had extreem anxiety and depression. I suffer from PTSD I got as a child also. Anyways I'm 25 years old I've been put on 5 different medications for major depression and spending 7 years in a addiction. I am now 2 years sober in alcoholics anymous. I've been able to find some spirituality but I still have some terrible memories of the feelings and experiences I had while meditating. It's almost tramatic. Whenever someone metions buddism or metitation my heart sinks. Sometimes when it's sunny out I drift deep into that horrible alienation zen brought me. I just wish I never found budism. I Just want to find peace, to heal from this negative association. I know I can't practice buddism anymore, which makes me sad because I did like something about. Like anyone I wanted to be free but instead got punished for it. I thought for awhile if I can't attain enlightenment there's no reason to live. I just want a new path I can walk and make peace with the path. A part if me says the buddist path is the only way to peace. I guess I need clarity and aceptance and permision to follow a different path to peace.
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Re: So scared

Postby Hanzze » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:56 am

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Tue Feb 01, 2011 2:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
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Re: So scared

Postby PeterB » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:58 am

jmeff I think you have experienced classic operant conditioning and as a result you have become phobic about anything associated with meditation.
I think you need to desensitise yourself. This would best be done under guidance of an experienced Theravadin teacher. If you explain your situation she/he can guide you through some basic but helpful breath and relaxation preliminary work that will help clear the slate, and enable you to gradually start a practice again.
:anjali:

NB I notice that in an earlier thread Row Your Boat suggested that you explore the possibility of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy. I would echo and reinforce his suggestion strongly. CBT is a form of therapy highly compatible with Buddha Dhamma, which concentrates on the here and now rather than on the past. Most people do not need to explore the way that a particular condition started, or why. Awareness of the present moment and the way that we react, and learning new ways to react are often the most successful and simple way to change our thoughts and behaviours rather than exploring our childhood or speculating about the past.

best wishes.
Last edited by PeterB on Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: So scared

Postby jmeff » Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:53 am

YA, I like normal, nothing fancy or too deep, just simple and straight forward. thanks guys, this is just a step into resolving some of my 'old believes'

I feel better about it already

thanks again guys
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Re: So scared

Postby PeterB » Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:54 am

metta to you..
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Re: So scared

Postby Hanzze » Mon Jan 17, 2011 12:58 pm

Ill Effect on Others

There are cases in which some person unfortunately suffered the ill effect in lieu of the doer. In such cases the doer escaped the bad resultant effects due to some form of protection *, but someone else very close to him such as his parents, teachers, children, servants, disciples or donors had to suffer in his place. People would then say, "Poor creature became the victim of kamma." The actual doer, who is responsible for the evil, will also feel sorry for the poor victim though he escaped the ill effects of his own misdeed. It may be seen therefore he is not altogether free from some suffering.


Abhidhamma In Daily Life By Ashin Janakabhivamsa
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
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Re: So scared

Postby PeterB » Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:02 pm

And guess what...it turns out that " protection* " is an astrological amulet ! :toilet:
So these are the "higher teachings " are they Hanzze...a retreat back to the Brahmanic superstition that the Buddha led humanity out of ?
At the very least I would suggest that ask yourself how referring the questioner to a website that cites astrological influences as an explanation for family dynamics is likely to be perceived by a western- educated person.
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Re: So scared

Postby shjohnk » Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:18 pm

To the OP: First, congrats on staying dry. This shows you have great willpower. I don't know what you mean by the traumatic experience that you describe, but might it be just that you reached a deep state of concentration where you began to see the truth of anatta, that our idea of self is false? I can imagine (and that's all I can do as my meditation has not reached anywhere near that point) this could be very traumatic for a 16 year-old, especially in our western self-idolizing culture (I'm Australian). I remember a former monk, after giving a dhamma talk, beinga sked about why he disrobed and he said the main reason was that he reached a point like this in his meditation practice, he termed it as 'feeling myself fading away' and he was unnerved by this. And this was a guy training under the personal tutelage of a great meditation teacher, so a self-taught teenager can be forgiven for freaking out.

I think the advice you've been given to focus on other aspects of the path like morality and generosity are excellent, and would like to add my encouragement to that you've received from the people here. Metta to you, friend :hug: :clap:
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Re: So scared

Postby Hanzze » Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:24 pm

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Tue Feb 01, 2011 2:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
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Re: So scared

Postby PeterB » Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:47 pm

jmeff wrote:When I was 14 I got into zen very intensly with no teacher. I read all sorts of buddist books meditated hours and hours a day. I had some amazing experiences in the beggining. Then when I was 16 I had an experience of complete seperation Some people call it depersonalization. Following that experience I had extreem anxiety and depression. I suffer from PTSD I got as a child also. Anyways I'm 25 years old I've been put on 5 different medications for major depression and spending 7 years in a addiction. I am now 2 years sober in alcoholics anymous. I've been able to find some spirituality but I still have some terrible memories of the feelings and experiences I had while meditating. It's almost tramatic. Whenever someone metions buddism or metitation my heart sinks. Sometimes when it's sunny out I drift deep into that horrible alienation zen brought me. I just wish I never found budism. I Just want to find peace, to heal from this negative association. I know I can't practice buddism anymore, which makes me sad because I did like something about. Like anyone I wanted to be free but instead got punished for it. I thought for awhile if I can't attain enlightenment there's no reason to live. I just want a new path I can walk and make peace with the path. A part if me says the buddist path is the only way to peace. I guess I need clarity and aceptance and permision to follow a different path to peace.

This is the OP. It mentions childhood but no mention per se of family dynamics. The alienation that jmeff speaks of could have many causes. It does not help to speculate about these beyond the information that we are given.
I do not believe for a second that we need an astrological explanation for what is arising from moment to moment, I think we need to turn the focus of our awareness onto what is arising, not attempt to explain it.
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Re: So scared

Postby Hanzze » Mon Jan 17, 2011 2:00 pm

_/\_
Last edited by Hanzze on Tue Feb 01, 2011 2:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
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Re: So scared

Postby PeterB » Mon Jan 17, 2011 2:14 pm

I have no idea what you mean. None.

However in the quote you posted there is a *, if one cross refers to that * it refers to the astrological dynamic within families and the subsequent need "for protection ",

.
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Re: So scared

Postby PeterB » Mon Jan 17, 2011 2:30 pm

shjohnk wrote:To the OP: First, congrats on staying dry. This shows you have great willpower. I don't know what you mean by the traumatic experience that you describe, but might it be just that you reached a deep state of concentration where you began to see the truth of anatta, that our idea of self is false? I can imagine (and that's all I can do as my meditation has not reached anywhere near that point) this could be very traumatic for a 16 year-old, especially in our western self-idolizing culture (I'm Australian). I remember a former monk, after giving a dhamma talk, beinga sked about why he disrobed and he said the main reason was that he reached a point like this in his meditation practice, he termed it as 'feeling myself fading away' and he was unnerved by this. And this was a guy training under the personal tutelage of a great meditation teacher, so a self-taught teenager can be forgiven for freaking out.

I think the advice you've been given to focus on other aspects of the path like morality and generosity are excellent, and would like to add my encouragement to that you've received from the people here. Metta to you, friend :hug: :clap:

Nice post.
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Re: So scared

Postby bodom » Mon Jan 17, 2011 3:20 pm

*MODERATOR NOTE*

Please lets keep the ancestor worship talk restricted to this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=13&t=6851

Ancestor worship has no relevance to this topic.

Thanks for your cooperation!


:anjali:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: So scared

Postby Nibbida » Sun Jan 23, 2011 11:56 am

jmeff wrote:When I was 14 I got into zen very intensly with no teacher. I read all sorts of buddist books meditated hours and hours a day. I had some amazing experiences in the beggining. Then when I was 16 I had an experience of complete seperation Some people call it depersonalization. Following that experience I had extreem anxiety and depression. I suffer from PTSD I got as a child also. Anyways I'm 25 years old I've been put on 5 different medications for major depression and spending 7 years in a addiction. I am now 2 years sober in alcoholics anymous. I've been able to find some spirituality but I still have some terrible memories of the feelings and experiences I had while meditating. It's almost tramatic. Whenever someone metions buddism or metitation my heart sinks. Sometimes when it's sunny out I drift deep into that horrible alienation zen brought me. I just wish I never found budism. I Just want to find peace, to heal from this negative association. I know I can't practice buddism anymore, which makes me sad because I did like something about. Like anyone I wanted to be free but instead got punished for it. I thought for awhile if I can't attain enlightenment there's no reason to live. I just want a new path I can walk and make peace with the path. A part if me says the buddist path is the only way to peace. I guess I need clarity and aceptance and permision to follow a different path to peace.


It's important to realize that Buddhism and meditation generally do no cause dissociative experiences. Trauma strongly predisposes people to depersonalization experiences, and the way you practiced meditation helped manifest it. You didn't know, and you were looking for something that would help you. But make no mistake, meditation is a mind-altering practice and can be just as dangerous as a drug if used improperly. Just like a scalpel it can harm or heal depending on how it's used.

As Peter said, it seems that the association you have between Buddhism/meditation and negative emotions/memories due to classical conditioning. It's just like Pavlov's dogs. Bells don't normally cause dogs to salivate, but when a bell happens together with food consistently, the dog associates the bell with food and starts to salivate. You associate meditation and Buddhism with negative experience because you experienced both of them together, and in a very powerful way.

One way to extinguish this conditioning is by exposing oneself to the "bell without the food," and eventually the brain learns that the relationship no longer holds. That's tricky to do in your situation and you also don't want to trigger any major difficult experiences that could jeopardize sobriety.

If you aren't already involved with a trained professional therapist to deal with your trauma, etc. I strongly recommend you find one. Twelve step groups are a fine method for many people, but severe conditions like this benefit from additional help. (Ditto Peter's recommendation for CBT as well.)

To embellish on some of the recommendations made above, there are a few things you can do which are spiritual and will enhance your life. Calling them "Buddhist" or not is irrelevant. It's just a label.

One is the path of service. Find some altruistic activity to engage in regularly, donating time and effort to some cause you would like to contribute to. Altruism has inevitably has beneficial effects, mental and physical, for the one who does it (see this excellent book: http://www.whygoodthingshappen.com/). Further, it gets you out and interacting with people, which will help counter feelings of alienation. Loneliness and alienation are illusions and our very existence is defined by connections. Altruism is an integral part of 12 Step groups too, in helping other addicts. But it's good to do something and make social contact beyond recovery groups as well.

Another possibility is doing practices like Tai Chi and/or yoga. These are means of focusing but also keeping grounded in your body. See this article on benefits of yoga for mental illness, including PTSD.
http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletters/Harvard_Mental_Health_Letter/2009/April/Yoga-for-anxiety-and-depression

Another possibility is to focus on compassion and kindness, especially toward oneself. This is a practice that is lacking in traditional Zen meditation. This doesn't need to be done in seated meditation, but could be done walking or doing daily activities. When sweeping a floor, wish thoughts of loving-kindness towards all who will walk over it. When preparing food, wish loving-kindness towards all who will eat it, and all whose lives they will touch. When driving or commuting to work (or wherever) wish loving-kindness to other commuters. When watching a movie, wish loving-kindness towards the actors and crew who created the film. There are no limits for the application of this. The only limit is one's creativity.

Thich Nhat Hanh wrote that "We must practice in a way that removes the barrier between practice and non-practice." (from Being Peace)


If the association with the label "Buddhism" is troubling, then drop the label. These things are universal. Call it "Oogey-boogeyism" or don't call it anything at all. Follow whatever path you care to. It's all one path by different names anyway (so sayeth Matthew Flickstein).

You wrote:
I guess I need clarity and aceptance and permision to follow a different path to peace.


The irony of you asking is that you are the only one who can grant this to you. No one here can give them to you, and no one here can deny you them. Your happiness depends on the choice you make in your given circumstances, not the choices of others.

[Edit: grammar corrections]
"Dispositions of the mind, like limbs of the body, acquire strength by exercise." --Thomas Jefferson

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