Restlessness and mental clock watching

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
adamposey
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Restlessness and mental clock watching

Postby adamposey » Tue Feb 16, 2010 4:10 pm

Last night I was trying to follow Goldstein's Vipassana guided meditation and about 45 minutes into it I found myself getting just terribly restless and pondering the amount of time left, etc., It was almost like being bored, but being anxious at the same time. Any advice for dealing?

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Sekha
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Re: Restlessness and mental clock watching

Postby Sekha » Tue Feb 16, 2010 4:29 pm

so was I the first time.

keep going :)
Where knowledge ends, religion begins. - B. Disraeli

http://www.buddha-vacana.org

Sanghamitta
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Re: Restlessness and mental clock watching

Postby Sanghamitta » Tue Feb 16, 2010 4:31 pm

Seconded.Keep going. Keep at it. It will get easier, but it takes time.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.

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Collective
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Re: Restlessness and mental clock watching

Postby Collective » Tue Feb 16, 2010 8:00 pm

Focus on the restlessness?

It helps me to think to myself 'Well what else would you be doing that's so interesting Mr. Hero? Rescuing women from 30' tall gorillas on skyscrapers? Fighting Nazis off the trail of the Lost Ark? Got a date with the American president? Nahh...didn't think so'.

Then I start to settle with an attitude of 'it can wait - 20/30/45/60 (whatever) minutes ain't that long in a 24 hour day. In light of the long term benefits I'll get, I can spare that'.

meindzai
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Re: Restlessness and mental clock watching

Postby meindzai » Tue Feb 16, 2010 8:26 pm

I don't know how long you've been practicing, but 45 minutes can be a long time if you're either new or haven't practiced in awhile.

-M

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Cittasanto
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Re: Restlessness and mental clock watching

Postby Cittasanto » Tue Feb 16, 2010 9:33 pm

Hi Adam & Collective,
remember there is appropriate attention, here is a list of sutta's & essays, cut & pasted from Access to insight on the topic. it is at the bottom of the general index page.

Yoniso manasikara (appropriate attention; wise reflection). See also the first six of the Ten Recollections; Questions.
What things should one attend to with ~?: SN 22.122
A remedy for a mind consumed by unskillful thoughts: SN 9.11
As a condition for right view: AN 2.125-126
As the key to abandoning greed, hatred, delusion: AN 3.68
As an important quality to develop: Iti 16
As a means to ending the asava: MN 2
"The Seven Factors for Awakening" in The Wings to Awakening (Thanissaro)
"Untangling the Present: The Role of Appropriate Attention" (Thanissaro)
Blog, Suttas, Aj Chah, Facebook.

He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
John Stuart Mill

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Goofaholix
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Re: Restlessness and mental clock watching

Postby Goofaholix » Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:39 pm

adamposey wrote:Last night I was trying to follow Goldstein's Vipassana guided meditation and about 45 minutes into it I found myself getting just terribly restless and pondering the amount of time left, etc., It was almost like being bored, but being anxious at the same time. Any advice for dealing?


This is normal, this is what it's all about. This restlessness is what drives you a lot of the time causing a lot of your suffering and you aren't aware of it, meditation is your chance to be aware of it and gain freedom from it.

Just notice it, don't fight it but don't give into it either, carry on with your meditation.

In time you will gain freedom from it.
“Peace is within oneself to be found in the same place as agitation and suffering. It is not found in a forest or on a hilltop, nor is it given by a teacher. Where you experience suffering, you can also find freedom from suffering. Trying to run away from suffering is actually to run toward it.” ― Ajahn Chah

adamposey
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Re: Restlessness and mental clock watching

Postby adamposey » Sat Feb 27, 2010 5:15 pm

I want to thank you all this has been very helpful.


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