November 29, 2011 at 3:43 pm #109848
munchkinMemberNovember 29, 2011 at 3:43 pmPost count: 285
My whole family used to do meditation together when I was a kid (yes that was the early 70’s in California – haha). I was the much younger, youngest kid, and hyper as a jumping bean. I just felt like meditation was an activity designed to highlight my shortcomings! I dreaded it because I would just be a distraction to everyone else and be unable to do anything but talk about why I couldn’t do this. I saw those looks I would get – “ugh, she is so “not zen” – can’t we just send her to her room?”
Then many years later during a time of great crisis, a friend re-introduced it to me, and I did it by myself without having to be compared with anyone else or be a distraction to anyone else.
I can only meditate for very short periods of time, and I am pretty liberal in what I define as meditation – anything where I stop what I’m doing and consciously control my mind and body. Even if it’s only for 10 seconds, it’s beneficial.REPORT ABUSENovember 30, 2011 at 9:16 pm #109849
BillMemberNovember 30, 2011 at 9:16 pmPost count: 227
If the idea of stillness or emptying the mind is impossible. If you are more of a doing person, then do a more active form of mindfulness. A mindful walk around the block might involve paying conscious attention to all the senses. How does the air feel against your skin? What sounds do you hear? What do you see and smell? How does the ground feel beneath your feet? You can also turn your attention inward and focus on your pulse and your breathing. Experience how the various parts of your body work together. Feel your weight shift and balance.
I find that when I am mindful, I am much less forgetful, because my mind is focused on here and now, instead of being already at my destination or some other random place.REPORT ABUSEJanuary 12, 2012 at 7:12 pm #109852
RobboMemberJanuary 12, 2012 at 7:12 pmPost count: 929
What an awesome page! I wish I had time to finish reading it. Got nothing to contribute (almost said add). Just wanna say thanks. At least I remembered to mark it as a favorite. I found this page looking for a page I lost… oh well.REPORT ABUSEJanuary 13, 2012 at 11:57 pm #109853
RobboMemberJanuary 13, 2012 at 11:57 pmPost count: 929
This is a great thread!, I’m glad I finally found it again. (clicking on favorites before I forget)
I almost posted this on the wrong thread.
My most valued tool for coping with just about any part of life is meditation. With me it’s Prayer n meditation. I’ve read this article a couple times through but I’m having a hard time fully digesting what it says. I’m hoping some other folks from this camp who have better reading comprehension might read it also and give explaining it in more simple terms a try. It’s really scientific. The small amount of Ritalin I have been taking is actually helping more than I realized. For once I’m not questioning how or why it works, I don’t have that urgent desire to satisfy my curiosity. The best thing is how I function in social situations.
It’s not just the Ritalin, it’s more meditation more Consistently, doing more reading than writing here, and lot’s of the rest of coping mechanisms I’ve discovered along the path I’ve chosen that fortunately brought me here.
Here’s the Meditation article. http://psyphz.psych.wisc.edu/web/pubs/2008/buddha_brain_IEEE.pdf It’s a pdf that I didn’t actually have to download, it’s just a web page. I’m not sure why it says pdf at the end. Weird?
Please check it out if any of you guys want to help me get a better understanding of what it says. I’m very sure meditation is very much a Large part of the solution to my ADHD in particular. I think this article does a great job of more effectively saying how it helps us.
I’m becoming less worried about building up a tolerance of the ritalin. That’s huge for me. I’m not happy with taking medication but much much closer to real full acceptance. Partly because with this post in particular I didn’t have to do much editing/proofreading at all. I didn’t even copy n paste it into a word processor! LOL, after writing that, I copy n pasted it into a word processor just in case!. It’s easier to edit/proofread when it’s in much larger print for some reason. A long time ago when I was on the wrong medz, I used to have to print stuff out in order to successfully edit/proofread. Anywayz, didn’t find any mistakes! I like to use a z instead of an s a lot. So that’s not a mistake.
I could keep writing. on and on…. zzzzzzz got ta get stuff done.
Later taters.REPORT ABUSEJanuary 14, 2012 at 2:50 am #109854
AnonymousInactiveJanuary 14, 2012 at 2:50 amPost count: 14413
I have had a daily meditation practice for many years. I’ve also practiced in different types of meditation (zen, mindfulness, metta, tonglen, dzogchen, mantra, etc). I’ll try to give you an answer as best I can from my own knowledge and experience, and point you in one direction that might be helpful for you. One of my teachers said “many paths, one truth”.
My meditation teacher/therapist once said to me “if you need a crutch to walk, you should use a crutch”. Earlier this year I started using stimulant medication – the crutch – and it has been helpful, but only when I take it. I’ve used ritalin but now I’m on a different stimulant medication for a different reason. I’ve practiced with and without the meds and while it’s different, the challenges and obstacles are always there, just to differing degrees and often appear to be different.
This is quite a technical article for technical people. It’s not really necessary to understand it in order to find out whether meditation would be helpful to you. The only way you will discover that is to just practice meditation, not once or twice, but consistently. It’s really not the length of time you spend in meditation but the quality of time, and the consistency of practice. Try carving out time devoted to this practice.
The article refers to two types of meditation which are common to many schools of meditation:
FA (focused attention) is usually taught as breath meditation. In Tibetan practices it is also referred to as shamatha. It’s a beginners’ practice and also an advanced practice. It’s the foundation of all other practices. It’s also not easy – it sounds simple but in practice it’s more difficult. The breath is usually used as the object since it’s always there to be observed and it’s portable and free, so it can be used in any situation at any time. Other objects could be a lit candle, a religious painting, a mantra, a rock, a plant, etc.
OM (open monitoring meditation) is usually taught as mindfulness, that is, non-judgementally observing one’s experience from moment to moment, in the present, not the past or the future. A practice called dzogchen is similar, although this practice includes the awareness of being aware as well as all of the sensations including thought. Open monitoring meditation is more challenging since it often involves movement, going about your daily life.
One of the Tibetan monks who worked closely with Richard Davison (author of the article and study) and who was part of the study using fMRI, has written several excellent books that are very approachable for a layperson. It’s not necessary to technically understand how the brain functions in order to meditate. That’s called confusing the finger pointing at the moon for the moon, in zen parlance.
His name is Yongey MIngyur Rinpoche and his first book is called “The Joy of Living” http://www.amazon.com/Joy-Living-Unlocking-Science-Happiness/dp/0307347311/ref=sr_1_sc_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1326509293&sr=8-1-spell
It’s a wonderful book, it talks about his experiences growing up in a monastery (his father was a renowned Tibetan master) and his issues with panic attacks and anxiety. He gives many real-life examples of issues that his students have with life and practice, and he also walks you through a number of different practices.
Here’s a quote to ponder: “Meditation isn’t a one-size-fits-all practice. Every individual represents a unique combination of temperament, background, and abilities… The essence of the Buddha’s teachings was that while formal [meditation] practice can help us to develop direct experience of emptiness, wisdom, and compassion, such experiences are meaningless unless we can bring them to bear on every aspect of our daily lives. For it’s in facing the challenges of daily life that we can really measure our development of calmness, insight, and compassion.”
He further suggests “Try the teachings for yourself to see if they work for you. Some of the practices may help you; some may not. Some of you may find a certain affinity with one or more techniques right away, while other methods require a bit more practice. Some of you may even find that meditation practice does not benefit you at all. That’s okay too. The most important thing is to find and work with a practice that produces a sense of calmness, clarity, confidence, and peace. If you can do that, you will benefit not only yourselves, but also everyone around you; and that is the goal of every scientific or spiritual practice, isn’t it? To create a safer, more harmonious, and gentle world, not only for ourselves, but for generations to come.”
I think that just about says it all.REPORT ABUSEJanuary 14, 2012 at 7:15 am #109855
RobboMemberJanuary 14, 2012 at 7:15 amPost count: 929
Thanks no_dopamine, you put a lot of work and your own experience out here for us. It’s great reading everyone’s reminders of stuff I’ve forgotten from the past, and plenty of new information. This is a valuable thread I can come back to. And also copy n print out for personal use. I know my memory will get better over time. But while I’m on the way to that goal it’s good to have this information written down, so easy for me to understand. Your writing serves us all very well no_dopamine. And a lot of you guys/gals.
I’m reminded of some simple yet profound advice I’ve given at times in my life when I was very spiritually healthy and doing well. Meditating about 20 minutes a couple times a day. I used to just say “the best way to learn how to meditate is to meditate” It’s very important to have the basic framework to begin with, that you guys have talked about. I like to remind people this is definitely no sprint, not even a brisk walk. But a long sometimes difficult hike. A journey. Very rewarding. The busy mind profits the most from meditation. Maybe that’s because it’s so much work for a busy mind, and can take tons and tons of being patient with yourself. Extra work rewards the meditator extra fine results. I can’t think of many really rewarding things in my life that were really easy to get. I’ve spent hours and hours on a mountain bike, or motorcycle completely in the now, taking in everything my senses were experiencing. One more way to employ the ideas and philosophy of meditation.
Then I would hit a bumble bee going about 50 or 60 mph, get a fat lip n loose my ability to meditate for a while. Those things happen…
It’s okay if a person decides this is not something they can make work for them. We have so many different tools to choose from right?, there’s a bolt for every nut, and we sure are a bunch of nutty folks huh? hehe. It’s good n fun when we find a way to enjoy the kind of nut we are. I hereby give myself permission to be a goofie nut :o) I’ll go meditate on that for a while.
Gratefully yoursREPORT ABUSEJanuary 14, 2012 at 7:15 am #109856
RobboMemberJanuary 14, 2012 at 7:15 amPost count: 929
Wupps! pardon me, Brain flatulation!… hehe, the first time I hit send it took more that 5 or 6 seconds so my busy brain didn’t think it worked. I’ll bet we’ve all done that a few times.
Guh niteREPORT ABUSEMarch 6, 2012 at 1:17 am #109858
AnonymousInactiveMarch 6, 2012 at 1:17 amPost count: 14413
I just wanted to share my favorite meditation practice. Mindfulness is great and helps you see out of loops of anxiety/depression or just plain can’t-stop-myself-from-thinking-about-this-so-much.
My friend recently introduced me to this guided meditation video:
It’s a great one and helps me calm down and put things in perspective. My friend does it before she goes to bed and it really helps out. I’d recommend it to anyone.REPORT ABUSEApril 27, 2012 at 9:05 am #109859
AnonymousInactiveApril 27, 2012 at 9:05 amPost count: 14413
Mindful awareness is a technique that can help you with ADD and.
Mindful awareness improves your ability to control your attention. The ADD patient need to have proper control over their thinking and impulsiveness. Mindful awareness can make people more aware of their emotional state, so they won’t react impulsively. That’s often a real problem for people with ADHD.REPORT ABUSEApril 27, 2012 at 9:06 am #109860
AnonymousInactiveApril 27, 2012 at 9:06 amPost count: 14413
Mindful awareness is a technique that can help you with ADD and.
Mindful awareness improves your ability to control your attention. The ADD patient need to have proper control over their thinking and impulsiveness. Mindful awareness can make people more aware of their emotional state, so they won’t react impulsively. That’s often a real problem for people with ADHD.REPORT ABUSE
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