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Everything posted by mindcentral

  1. "A pivotal question seems to be whether a person's transcendental experience leads to compassion and empathy with others, and whether there is a reduction in egocentric, selfish preoccupations. As these latter traits are also major characteristics of certain personality disorders, the alleviation of such problems becomes central to the development of the self. Indeed, egocentrism and lack of empathy are classic indicators of the lack of development of an authentic self. I am now convinced that transcendental experiences can occur to persons with serious personality disorders. Such persons often become dangerous teachers due to their lack of empathy and compassion for their students. Thus, the mind can be transcended through a psychospiritual "escape hatch," but the deeper emotional issues and problems will still be there when one returns to ordinary life. This cannot be overemphasized. I have met several persons who claimed to be spiritual teachers who seem to have genuinely experienced transcendence, but remain chronically unempathic, much to the detriment of their students. They talk at at length about compassion and love but by their actions seem to be more interested in the love of sex and the love of self, and sometimes, the love of money or alcohol. Much has been written of this in recent years (see Feuerstein, 1990; Walsh & Vaughan, 1993). In such cases, psychotherapy would be a proper prescription (Kornfield, 1993) as these persons tend to be destructive to those around them. It is likely that these experiences may have bypassed the essential step of reorganizing the core self so that one can address and work through his or her narcissistic or borderline issues. Only then can one stabilize the capacity for empathy and compassion. In other words, the empathy and compassion that one experiences through meditation and transcendence may only be temporary, felt concomitantly with the glow from the transcendent experience--and wears off soon after. It may also be that in such cases, after the glow diminishes, a person becomes infatuated with the fact of having been "chosen, " or privileged to have reached beyond the mundane. The person may now feel that he or she has become somehow superior or special- beyond mere ordinary persons. Such a person then subtly, unknowingly, and indirectly, projects himself or herself as a new standard for humanity. This is, of course, dangerous, especially to those who trust themselves to the "wisdom" of such persons. It is unfortunate that, with all the literature on meditation and transcendence, this connection with psychopathology is almost never mentioned. If it were, both teachers and students could more readily recognize such manifestations and realize that they are natural consequences of transcendence that need to be resolved. ... So-called knowledge arising from transcendence is similarly unreliable, often impulsive rather than intuitive, and drawn from memory reconstruction of the transcendent moment rather than the spontaneous experiencing and knowing in the here and now."
  2. Maybe, but consider that you come across as less believable and kind of dull by calling people names and that this is hence not an effective teaching strategy. I will now state my perception of you, not to insult you but to clarify how you may come across to many people (and I do not think that these 'many people' are per se the ones that are lacking in qualities like intelligence, insight, etc.) I admit that I have not followed your content in a very long time beyond lurking on this forum once in a while and reading some of your posts, but to me you appear a kind of grandiloquent person with a bad case of spiritual ego who finds it very important to convey how much more conscious he is than other teachers. You also appear as a person who reifies his trip reports, getting stuck in an intellectual game of deconstructing -- often flippantly and lazily and hence not convincingly -- other models related to consciousness work and furthering one's own. (Perhaps it is being in a position where you must continue to generate content that gets you stuck in this conceptual game?) It is not that I am a proponent of these other models and hence feel personally offended by this, but the careless disrespect seems to indicate a lack of wisdom and insight rather than being a confirmation of how much more conscious you are than everyone else, which is what you seem to think it indicates. You also seem adamant about creating an identification between 'unconscious' or 'less conscious' or 'not conscious enough' and your audience. Even if this is genuinely a didactic technique and nothing else besides, I rather doubt that this is effective. Rather than shaking people awake, I would rather expect that in this way what you are teaching is emotional tension, negative motivation, low self-esteem, lack, ... I certainly don't mean to suggest that you only teach these things, as I've seen enough content to know that you also teach the opposite of these, but that this is what such a didactic technique tends to teach. (Just FYI: I am a proponent of using psychedelics for this work, so this is not an issue for me.)
  3. Indeed, you were not addressing Brendon, and yet you called him an idiot. I don't see how this can be didactic rudeness, as this is being rude to someone you are not addressing. I did not make this post because I am a follower of Ralston or to defend his followers, but because your statement vis-a-vis your own rudeness is inconsistent with the rudeness in your post. Truth etc.
  4. You say you are not rude out of thin air and that your rudeness is methodical, but the person you call an idiot is not on this forum nor a follower of your teachings.
  5. What psychedelic is the easiest on the body? Especially in terms of not causing tension (or even relaxing).
  6. I've had fibromyalgia for about 6 years now. I've tried myriad treatments, but maybe some of you have suggestions that I'm not aware of? I've done most 'standard' treatments and have tried most diets, except vegan which I don't believe will help me as I drive best on animal products. I've also done the carnivore diet, Wim Hof Method (still do, it's good but doesn't cure me or anything), acupuncture, somatic experiencing, floatation tanks, etc etc etc.. I'm familiar with Joe Dispenza so don't bother posting about him. Also please don't tell me to meditate or do psychedelics or seek enlightenment (been there done that).
  7. Supposedly Ramana Maharshi said that the 'the body itself is a disease' (in the context of his cancer, thus implying that the cancer was not something to be feel bad about). I guess it's one thing to say that the body is not you and unimportant, but why would he call it a disease?
  8. Interesting contrast with Leo's recent video about self-love: Thoughts?
  9. Awakenings come and go. What is present during both awakening and non-awakening? Find out what that is
  10. Morality is a survival tool of ego's, something that stands in the way of consciousness.
  11. Check out the Joe Dispenza testimonials on YouTube, they are likely relevant for your project.
  12. Lately during meditation, my eyes often roll back in my head and then my eyelids open, but I only see blackness because my eyes are rolled back in my head. Any ideas on what causes this or what it signifies, if anything? Thanks.
  13. Being aware of being aware is very simple. It might appear complex when the mind tries to understand it intellectually, but actually being aware of being aware is profoundly simple, I would say simpler than focusing on the breath. When the mind tries to grasp it rationally, you only need to notice that you are aware of this trying-to-grasp. No problem!
  14. When frustration arises in your experience, notice that you are being aware of frustration. (If you weren't you would not know that 'you' get frustrated.) When you don't know what focus on, notice that you are being aware of this confusion arising within experience. When the mind is trying to logically understand how 'it' should be aware of being aware, notice that you are being aware of the mind trying to logically understand. In your guided meditation, when feeling that you can't focus on being aware of being aware, be aware that you are aware of feeling that you can't focus on it. (If you weren't you wouldn't be able to react to this feeling.) Keep on noticing forms of experience (thoughts, feelings, perceptions, etc.) arise within experience and keep noticing that you are aware of these forms. I would also suggest the following: When the mind is trying to control the being aware of being aware meditation, wanting it to be some preconceived concept of it, notice that you are aware of the mind trying to control the meditation. Put differently, when you notice desiring some different state than the one you are currently experiencing, notice that you are being aware of this desiring. Being aware of being aware is not a state of mind. A state X is relative to a state Y and is thus a form of experience, an object of experience. Being aware of being aware is a 'non-objective' experience. Be aware of the mind turning being aware of being aware into an object to be realized in the future. Being aware is already the case, now. Be aware that it is already the case. Be aware that you are aware of the screen on which you are reading this text. Be aware that you are aware of the noises that appear in the mind as a result of this text. Be aware that you are aware that the color of this text is black. Be aware that you are aware of the white background of this forum. Etc.
  15. A lot of literature has the potential to expand your knowledge of the human mind, I would recommend reading at least sporadically reading some fiction. But you have to pick the right books of course. Dostoyevsky is a master psychologist. Start with 'Notes from Underground'. David Foster Wallace's short fiction is also good. Or existential literature (Sartre, Camus, ...).
  16. What spiritual options do chronically ill people have (e.g. people with severe fibromyalgia)? How much of a spiritual limitation is a chronic health condition with no chance of improvement and which is possibly even progressive in nature? Kriya Yoga, for instance, is no option for me because I can't sit straight in a comfortable way for longer than five minutes. Long regular meditation sessions are much more difficult as well with a decrepit body and brings with it other obstacles (e.g. falling asleep during meditation because of low energy). I've had a lot of intense and full-blown mystical experiences on psychedelics, but my decrepit body remains a limitation in this domain as well. Are chronically ill people spiritually fucked unless they have inborn spiritual talent? I know Ramana Maharshi was decrepit and totally neglected his body, but obviously he is an aberrant case. Note: not looking for health advice here. Just take it for granted that healing is not an option.
  17. That's what I've been doing or trying to do for quite some time. I've been taking frequent, solo investigative trips since I was 22 (27 now) and have connected to 'source' as you call it on several occasions. Been contemplating and meditating steadily for about 2,5 years and am committed to being as authentic as possible. Over time I've had some improvement (regaining the ability to sleep, mild reduction of symptoms) but currently nothing indicates it will heal. I'm keeping an open mind of course and do try not to turn this into a limiting belief. I added the 'take for granted' caveat because I wanted to know what the best practices are IF my body situation does not improve, but this is not a fixed belief. Curious what your take on this is, @Leo Gura: My last LSD trip (about 300µg) I became intensely 'aware of awareness' and surrendered myself completely to awareness, dissolving in it. Subsequent to this my body began to behave entirely of its own accord, as if it was an entirely external thing unfolding of itself (it was no longer 'me'). My body lay down on the floor, shaking its head and contorting its spine, stretching itself out out (especially around the cheeks and neck) in very intense ways. During this experience, I got flashes of what I at that moment I interpreted as memories of a past life-- images of an underworld filled with prostitution and I 'sensed' even darker things such as murder. The idea arose that I was a portal of human misery, that it was my 'cosmic purpose' to bear the pain of other beings and that my existence had no other function beyond that. At some point 'I' returned and took back control over the body. My body made further attempts to contort and twist, which was frightening, but these attempts subsided as I blocked this process. I cried for hours after that but this wasn't experienced as a negative per se, felt cathartic. Do you think I should have let my body continue to do what it wanted to do? I stopped the process because it felt very dangerous but I also realize that letting it happen might been very cathartic. I'm not sure how I relate to the idea of past lives. I try to be agnostic about everything but I don't know how to wield the past lives/reincarnation model to understand my predicament with, or if that would be a useful thing to do. (Also, my first sexual experiences were with prostitutes and I only after developed the ability to approach women and form something of a connection with them, so ambiguous feelings about that might have played into my above described LSD experience, but I don't know.) Thanks for the feedback everyone.
  18. Which enlightened teachers are the best orators? My vote goes to Vernon Howard and Alan Watts. Peter Ralston is pretty entertaining to listen to. Most other teachers I find terribly boring as speakers (Sadghuru, Eckhart Tole and especially Osho).
  19. Well, there is always that possibility, even if you don't claim that. Also, it is possible to have an honest, non-ego influenced judgment that "you" [notice the significant quotation marks] are the best in/at something. Not because you need to be the best, but simply because in your own genuine estimation, you happen to be so. Hiding that view in that case would be false humility, which is hypocritical and disingenuous-- it would reveal a need to be seen in a certain light, being emotionally invested in others' opinions etc. I have a strong suspicion that when Ralston toots his own horn, it's not because of any ego-reason. That doesn't necessarily mean he's correct of course, that's a different matter.
  20. A mindfulness teacher told me that in 'Heart-meditations' (basically: wishing yourself well, wishing someone you like well, wishing someone you dislike well), your wish somehow 'reaches' the other person, even if they are entirely unaware of your doing it. It benefits them in a fuzzy voodoo kind of way. What do you guys think about this? Stupid belief or something to it?
  21. Cool. What do you think about my question?