January 21, 2005
Mindfulness, Identity, Conflict
The general theme of this week's dialogue was how to get into and stay mindful in spite of conflicts, indifference or boredom.
Stories, Quotes etc:
- To realize how mechanical you are, become aware of your feet.
- There is no such thing as time-management. Time does not exist as an entity for us to manage.
There is only self-management.
- In the context of attending a job interview, once my friend told me what to do if I get tensed: He said, "Watch yourself getting tensed, watch your heart rate increasing... and tease and laugh at yourself as you do when someone else gets tensed, for example, watching a thriller."
At that time, I did not realize that this is a technique to bring awareness to what is going on within oneself without fighting it.
- I do not want my life to be measured by how many "highlights" I have had. I want every day to mean
something so that no one day is greater or lesser than another day.
- Do we need a personal or a larger purpose as a motivation to be mindful? Can we see every action
as an end in itself and be mindful in doing it?
- Being mindful is the not the same as "liking" eveything we do. As a day is followed by night, a
pleasent activity is followed by a boring or frustrating activity. Being mindful is not an attempt
to always have positive emotions so that we can do any task well. It is observing emotions as they
arise without encouraging or discouraging them. This observation itself stops the emotions from influencing how we do a task.
- We can analyze a situation and manage to take the best action. But even this puts our internal state of being at the mercy of the result of the action. As long as the result remains the source of pleasure and pain, we can have no control over how we respond to a situation.
- Normally we tend to think that we "have" emotions. That is we think of ourselves as a container that has emotions. But observing oneself while expereincing an emotion indicates that when we are expereincing an emotion, we become the emotion. Many times we feel that "It is not like me not to get angry or joyful or frustrated etc at this or that." Sometimes catching oneself not reacting to something as usual makes us feel something is wrong with us..."What happened to me? I usually jump at this kind of news." If we can stop identifying ourselves with our usual patterns of thoughts and emotions, one can respond to a situation with more control.
- Everyone has one or more gremlins. It starts small and keeps growing in size and complexity. It seeps into our habits and behavior. Once it grows mature, even if we know it is there, we have less control over it.
- Everyday, when I am ready to go to my office, I sit down and read a book for about 20 mins. Often I feel I want to read a few more pages. But I know I will get late and hence I stop reading. I don't know what to do about this conflict.
- Some people meditate for an hour (or more) very easily. I cannot meditate for more than 20 mins even if I want to. I would like to practice more meditation.
Posted by pkaipa at January 21, 2005 10:23 AM
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