Hidden beliefs that shape our life experiences

Neil

Jedi Council Member
FOTCM Member
I kind of agree with TC's take on it. In my belief system, truth is what has the quintessentially intrinsic value, and the other things you mention are kind of derivative from it.

I've always wanted to know why things are the way they are and the ultimate truths behind the cosmos. I did not want to be enslaved by the cycle of pointlessness that defines modern life, there had to be some hidden meaning behind it that gave it purpose. In school they told us that anything was possible if we committed ourselves to our education. While a lot of this seemed to be semi-conscious propaganda to indoctrinate us into our roles in the MCS, I saw truth as understanding exactly how anything was possible. I really wanted to know.

If truth is the foundation, you have to be able to handle that truth and that is only possible through gaining mastery of oneself. There is a certain empathy and humility towards the universe that must be developed in order to really understand your place within it in relation to these truths. Those who blindly chase after the "occult secrets" can only gain a fragmentary knowledge, and it is so focused on the ego that it leads to disintegration in one's own subjectivity. The 4D STS beings seem to be able to stave this off for awhile, but even they are subject to the same ultimate implosion.

Therefore, if truth is valued, STO becomes the default choice. An objective being that possesses empathy and humility pretty much by definition cannot be an STS being. There are other ancillary reasons why the STO path is attractive, the main one I think being that it allows for "simple pleasures" to enjoy life that are lost in the machine-like drive for total control that the STS pathway ultimately devolves into. You enslave yourself to the single-minded idea of enslavement.

That brings us to the "reward" of 4D. I don't really need 4D superpowers to have a fulfilling life. I wouldn't be so much interested in the subject if it wasn't for what the Cassiopaeans said about the planet being in a lockdown time loop with the Lizzies having near total control of the 3D realm. The apparent "superiority" of the UFOnauts with their nearly magical technology and ability to make the physical universe bend to their whims drove home the point that this planet can never change. There is no confronting them and winning, once you start getting too far out of line and making some real progress in the world they destroy you. Even if you attain some degree of "goodness" in your personal life it is always in the shadow of this insane, draconian world. It is a prison that goes on forever and ever. That is an extremely depressing realization to have and it instantly shattered what little "youthful optimism" I had left shortly after I turned 20 years old.

So the takeaway I got from some of the darker Cassiopaean sessions is that it's pretty much 4D or bust; and even 4D could end up being just as much of a prison as 3D if you didn't play your cards very carefully. Instead of trying to beat Orion STS in a war, it is possible to go around them by making choices informed by truth, which brings us back to the utility of the Work and STO principles. So that's where I'm at on it. I don't want to be a slave and I don't want to repeat the slave cycle over and over and over. So I have to find all of the ways they have convinced me to agree to be a slave and undo all of the linkages until they no longer have any power over me.

I suppose I do have a fear that it's all for nothing, that would be the equivalent to your "punishment" if it were true, but it is a very conscious fear, and based on what I've seen I don't believe it. So I don't view it as a heaven/hell type thing, it is a matter of practicality and what you want to experience. If the Cassiopaeans were proven to be a fraud, a lot of what they say has some practical utility and at least some circumstantial evidence to support it. As long as freewill isn't disproven, the future is open and anything is possible.
 
Divide By Zero said:
13TT-
I too don't see a problem with being selfish. It was one thing that I had to realize recently, developing in the last year or so after feeling weak for so long.

As theoria said, it depends on our aim- the real purpose for it. So, as a "side effect" who we are actually ends up serving that higher purpose, OSIT.

Anyway, from the stories about Gandhi, Malcolm X, and others who were capable and tried- they had embraced their skills and ego in order to accomplish something. It's not always pretty, especially in civil rights or the labor movement. You feel bad for it, but reality teaches us that if that were our aim, sometimes it is quite dangerous and dark to fight for it!

The emotions as clouds and the importance of clouds not being stuck reminds me of electrical/mechanical controls (like for a fancy motor or pump).

I'll try to make it understandable, in the process I might destroy some of the actual technical logic, forgive me but the idea is pertinent.

These emotions are like sensor data. The programming logic of the control does not do well if there is a constant "out of range" or "alert" signal and it cannot change the pump or motor to get out of that extreme and get to it's range (or "aim").

Some controllers are not just up and down, but can also mathematically accelerate the change to push our of that "funky" situation, or be able to tell that something else is wrong.

So, it seems like with an aim, we can properly calibrate our sensors instead of numbing that sensor input as if it doesn't matter!
DBZ — You made my day. I totally cracked-up laughing when I read your analogy. And when I thought about it again this morning, I started laughing again.

I am soooo sorry — but I have absolutely no understanding of what you're describing. I even looked up 8 words contained in your post — thinking maybe I could figure out what you meant. But I seem to be totally hopeless with respect to this field of — well, I don't even know what. Computers? Machines? Engines? I'm not sure.

It's like a foreign language. Actually, it's more like an alien language to me. LOL Reading the definitions for those 8 words I looked up was an educational exercise for me so I thoroughly enjoyed learning that stuff. Too bad I was still unable to put it all together in order to understand your analogy. But that is my failing, not yours.

I'm not complaining — or criticising. I'm just all at sea. But I will bet that there are many other people on this Forum who will understand your analogy.

I've been realizing how interesting it is — the sorts of analogies we all use to illustrate a concept we wish to convey. And, because other people use analogies that I cannot understand, then I, too, must be using analogies that others cannot understand either. It's all very interesting how that is, yes?

At any rate, in reply to the first part of your post — where you said —

Divide By Zero said:
"I too don't see a problem with being selfish. It was one thing that I had to realize recently, developing in the last year or so after feeling weak for so long."

As theoria said, it depends on our aim- the real purpose for it. So, as a "side effect" who we are actually ends up serving that higher purpose, OSIT.
So, I looked up the word "SELFISH". And here's what one dictionary definition has to say:

Selfish: having or showing concern only for yourself and not for the needs or feelings of other people

Well, using that particular definition, I'm failing to see how this can be construed in any way that would serve our Aim or Purpose or our Work on ourselves. Am I missing something?

I'm not saying I shouldn't be concerned about myself at all. We all have to or we'd be headed towards 5D pretty darn quick.

After reading that definition, I see that it doesn't STRICTLY apply to my former attitude. It wasn't an all-or-nothing attitude. It's just that I'd shifted from one extreme of caring so much about others to finally include caring about myself as well, that for me it felt as if I'd lost my moral compass. But it was probably more that I gained a bit of balance.

I think it was mostly that I felt quite a shock when I was writing my previous post and the words —

13TT said:
I threw out the entire idea of serving others at all as a focus or aim or purpose. I didn't care about serving others anymore.
hit me over the head with such force as I realized what I was saying about my attitude.

I am happy to say that I no longer feel this way. But I definitely went through a stage where that really was my attitude. I think it kind of scared me that I was capable of ever adopting that stance. Made me afraid that maybe I could ULTIMATELY align with the STS FRV — and that really frightened me — because it made me realize that I really, really, really, really do NOT WANT to align with STS ultimately. I think I believed that I could temporarily take a break or vacation from aligning with STO and then return to it whenever I changed my mind. But what if I couldn't return? What if I went down that path so far I became unable to turn around and align with STO? And that was what shocked me. That I could so easily fall over the edge into STS alignment if I didn't watch out and make whatever efforts are required to consciously choose to align and consciously maintain alignment with STO. I'm not saying I can BE STO. I'm just referring to choosing to align with STO attitudes and actions.

Anyway, thanks for making me laugh, DBZ. Even though I doubt that was your intention. :)

Cheers!
 

Divide by Zero

The Living Force
I see the term selfish is a wrong way to put it. But really, there can be times where we are so beat down we ignore our own needs and keep serving others to our own detriment. So, I guess we can redefine it as "strategic selfishness" lol. Not to dumb down the original terms, but a serious issue. About two years ago, I lived and was with with a woman who would give give give even when she was dead tired. She would disassociate into hours of online poker in order to regain her strength. Meanwhile, something as simple as putting her boots/shoes to the side of the hallway instead of right in the middle was lost upon her. I would tell her nicely to not do this until one day I almost broke my toe! Then, I totally went selfish bonkers and told her next time it happens, I will be tossing them in the trash. I was done trying to be patient with someone who gave up her patience to others, not having any left for me.

Was that selfish? In a way yes, but it wasn't until I did that - she woke up and apologized profusely. Before then, she would give me an attitude that she had a "hard day". Hard day I took as an excuse and felt pity for.

Selfishness could also be mixed up with guilt. Sometimes guilt creates this LOSE-LOSE situation where we give and give and never feel like it's enough. Being able to be selfish seems to be one strategic way for those to get out of relationships with tons of feeding and control. So, I guess as a tool it can be powerful. Of course, if you were truly deep down selfish- you would not feel doubt in it afterwards. I think that is the proper check valve for it.


Sorry about the analogy being crazy difficult to follow.
I tried I tried, lol. I shall try again with more specific examples to paint a picture.

It's basically where you have something that has to do a job. A pump has to move water from A to B. If A is too high, it has to come on and move it to B. A sensor is what says how high the water is and how fast the pump is working.

The program- or unconscious part of the machine is the controller- the brains.
The brains decide when to turn on the pump (based on level) and how fast to put the pump (based on levels and how fast it is already going).
In simple programs, it will just turn the pump on at a specific level- let's say 10 feet high and run it at full speed.
Smarter ones would know how fast the tank A is going up and be able to use a slower speed for the pump to save energy and what not.

Sometimes the tank might give a wrong number, like 255 feet! Sometimes the pump speed can be reported wrong.
In these cases, the brains will get confused and start to do crazy things, like run the pump until tank A is bone dry- and that can hurt the pump. This "emotional" input to the program is taken literally without question.

The smarter self-analysis types of controls/brains can say- Hey wait a minute, how is it that the tank is not changing? Or hey, how come the pump says it is at a slow speed when I asked for a fast speed? In that case, instead of continuing to do the stupid thing of assuming everything is working- the brains can give a warning. Some times it can use other sensors (senses?) to find the problem, ask other pumps to help (if they exist), or alert the operator who watches over the pumps.

The emotions/sensors being stuck is like you said, the clouds are stuck- and those controllers don't like that either. They have a job to do, like we do. So that's where I saw the analogy fit. Just so you know why pumping is so important, and a chuckle... I work at a sewage plant! If the pumps don't work and we don't know, the s^&* hits the floor :)
 

Approaching Infinity

Administrator
Administrator
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FOTCM Member
Joe said:
I suppose most people here can relate to this, but I don't think the problem is really the fact that our days tend to follow the same or similar routines. Routines are actually necessary if we're going to get anything done, after all, certain tasks require the same or similar actions to be performed over and over again. We all HAVE to get dressed each morning and eat breakfast, and ideally our food SHOULD be pretty standard. So changing that aspect of the routine isn't really necessary or advisable. The aspect that we really should be changing or developing is what goes on inside ourselves, our thoughts and emotional reactions to things in our environment that tends to repeat.
Agree with all that, but I think there's a more general point to take away from that little excerpt: that we're "habit-forming" creatures. However we explain it (e.g. evolution or morphic fields), humans form all sorts of habits through repetition. But that pretty much means we're predisposed to behaving habitually, even when it's not in our best interests. The negative aspects of being creatures of habit influence all aspects of our lives, including the important ones you emphasize: thoughts and emotions.

As for which habits are good to break, yeah, some things should be routine and standard, but breaking them can also be a good practice - little experiments in will power. Gurdjieff recommended exercises like this: first observe how you habitually do certain mundane things, like which leg of your pants you put on first, which foot you lead with when walking, how you brush your teeth, etc. Probably most people aren't even aware of how they do these things; they run on autopilot. So as a first step to build body awareness - you observe these things, then get in the habit of experimenting with changing them. In other words, make it a habit to break your habits.

At first it's tough, because you catch yourself automatically falling into the habit, or you realize you did it without any awareness. But over time, you can control it. Little things don't matter much when it comes to bigger issues like thoughts, emotions, interpersonal interactions, but each little act of will can strengthen your overall will, so the ability "crosses domains", so to speak. Just like the negative aspects of habitual behaviors have an overall negative influence, habit-breaking in general can have an overall positive influence.

So it's not so much a matter of not having any routines; it's living a life of active awareness and participation, choosing and willing what your body does. You may still follow a routine, but it is a conscious one.

In fact, you no longer have a "belief" in the normal sense of believing something outside of yourself, but rather you embody a set of values that you have made a part of your very being. If every life philosophy and religious belief were suddenly proven false, you would remain largely unaffected and could carry on towards your own personal goal regardless.
I think it's important to clarify what we mean by 'belief' here. On its own, it's a pretty neutral word: something we accept as true or real. I think most "external" beliefs should be tentative. We can be pretty sure something is true (e.g., that JFK was assassinated on 11/22/63), less sure about others (e.g., who pulled the trigger), but open to changing that belief with new evidence, or just admitting that we're not sure and there's not enough evidence.

Values are a type of belief too. If I value truth, I must accept that some things are true and others are not. I "believe" in truth. Maybe it's better to call these sorts of beliefs "convictions", "core beliefs" or something else. They're things that find their source within us, the core beliefs that influence how we see the world, and how we act in it. They also determine how we form external beliefs. For example, we may SAY we value truth, but believe in things without evidence, or ignore evidence that might change our beliefs.

I think that if we deeply value certain things, those values will mesh with certain conclusions or beliefs about the nature of reality. Even if many metaphysical/religious beliefs were proven false, we would still be left with certain fundamental principles about the nature of the cosmos. (Aside: And if the beliefs were proven false, we would have to verify those proofs for ourselves, or prove them for ourselves, using our own reason, otherwise we would just be forming new "external" beliefs.) Coming back to the example above, if I truly value truth in and of itself, I can't rationally or in good conscience simultaneously believe in a world where values are impossible, or truth is subjective (e.g., materialism).

So I think that forming an inner system of values will go hand in hand (or should go hand in hand) with forming a worldview in which those values make sense. Of course, the more elaborate you get, the more likely you are to go wrong, and that's the trap of most religious beliefs: they're so specific, yet unverifiable, and most of them are incompatible or mutually exclusive.

A could years ago, the Cs gave the following advice:

8/16/14
Just work daily at becoming more aware on three levels
1. Body and immediate environment,
2. Wider world affairs,
3. Cosmos and spirit.
I think it's good advice, and goes back to how you started this thread: with Dispenza's description of habits. The first step of knowledge is self-knowledge, and the first step of self-knowledge is of our body and its environment. As we expand our awareness on that foundation, we also expand our knowledge and develop our values. And in tandem, we form a worldview that harmonizes everything together, striving to approach something that is consistent with all the facts at our disposable, something that is true.

I was raised nominally Catholic. Went to church, said my prayers, but that's about it. I zoned out in church for the most part, and was never really "instructed" in all the various sorts of Catholic beliefs, just some vague notions of a nice heaven and a nasty hell. My parents never made it personal, e.g., "Don't do that, or you'll go to hell!" Basically, religion was never a big part of my life growing up. In fact, I think the most theological discussion I had as a child was with another Catholic friend of mine. We were playing hand hockey, and whenever I was goalie I'd be too afraid of the ball to put myself in front of it to stop it. He advised me, "You just have to tell yourself that if you don't stop the ball, you're going to hell!" Can't say it helped that much! :halo:

But as I got older and stopped going to church (again for equally vague reasons), I found myself still saying my prayers at night. I remember being surprised to discover that I had a fear that if I didn't say my prayers, something bad might happen (would God be displeased with me?). So even though I never had religious beliefs forcefully thrown at me, they still had an effect. Maybe a year or two later, however, that fear wasn't there. Now I look back and half smile, half shake my head.

What initially pulled me in to Laura's writings was the "mysteries revealed" quality to them. They were as entertaining and far-out as sci-fi books, and they made sense, and they were coming from a down-to-earth, sincere, fearless source. I think the driving emotion was one of wide-eyed wonder, and the driving thought while reading was something like "Is this true?!" They dispelled some of the vaguely held beliefs that carried over from childhood - ones that I had not formulated for myself, thought too deeply about, or attempted to verify for myself. And they strengthened some equally vague beliefs that I would now say were "core beliefs" or values that I hadn't yet elaborated for myself. 'Big' things like truth, purpose, self-development, love, responsibility, integrity, autonomy.

For me, 4D is a possbility. It's fascinating. In some ways it kinda makes sense, in others it's a mystery. It may or may not be true. And if true, I may or may not make it in this lifetime. I don't lose sleep over it. What matters for me now is what's in front of me: myself in my immediate environment, what's going on in the world, how I react to and act within and with that environment, including the people I consider my family, and trying to place all that within as wide a context as possible. In reference to 4D, basically this: if it is a real possibility, what aspects about it can I put into practice now? It's no use having far-off vision of some "great future" and just expecting or waiting for it to happen. Better to do what I can NOW.

And I'm sure in another 10 years, I'll look back and half smile and half shake my head about how vague or wrong some of the what I believe or value now is/was. But, hey, that's life!
 
Divide By Zero said:
I see the term selfish is a wrong way to put it. But really, there can be times where we are so beat down we ignore our own needs and keep serving others to our own detriment. So, I guess we can redefine it as "strategic selfishness" lol. Not to dumb down the original terms, but a serious issue. About two years ago, I lived and was with with a woman who would give give give even when she was dead tired. She would disassociate into hours of online poker in order to regain her strength. Meanwhile, something as simple as putting her boots/shoes to the side of the hallway instead of right in the middle was lost upon her. I would tell her nicely to not do this until one day I almost broke my toe! Then, I totally went selfish bonkers and told her next time it happens, I will be tossing them in the trash. I was done trying to be patient with someone who gave up her patience to others, not having any left for me.
Hi DBZ. Strategic Selfishness. Now that made me laugh out loud. I love it. I plan to adopt it for myself if you don't mind me plagarizing your idea.

Actually, your example doesn't really sound at all 'selfish' to me. It sounds more like establishing certain boundaries and limits and setting terms for polite behavior and external consideration being extended towards others.

And I am sorry to say that I have also attempted to politely and considerately point out someone else's inconsiderateness and they, too, have just blythly ignored or dismissed or discounted my request and continued doing what I have asked them not to do — or not do something I have asked them to do. And you know what? It's as if I were talking to a wall for all the good it did me. And you know what else? I also tell them what consequences will befall them should they continue to ignore my request. I mean — it's not as if my requests are unreasonable. They are usually for either safety reasons, or economy reasons (like turning off the lights when leaving a room), or maintenance reasons making more work for me than necessary (like wiping up spills on the floor rather than leaving them for me to clean up).

So, I'm not sure what you mean by going totally "selfish bonkers", but it sounds to me as if you'd reached your limit and needed to get her to actually pay attention to what you'd been saying. Yeah, the fact that she was giving all her patience to others and had none left to give to you, would be adding insult to injury. It makes us feel de-valued, like we matter less to someone than we thought we should matter.

To some extent, this is probably where that Self-Importance thing comes up. Where we feel offended at the deeds and mis-deeds of others. Not saying we should just shut-up and put-up with offensive behavior. Just saying that sometimes feeling offended can motivate us to say, enough, that's it, no more. Because it is not our job to become doormats for others or to put up with others bad behavior and just suck-it up and be a martyr.

(Unless, of course one is practicing the Way of the Sorcerer as outlined by Castaneda and one is seeking Petty Tyrants to practice with.)

I used to do all that myself. But no more. I think I used to let others get away with murder because I didn't feel comfortable saying NO and MEANING it. But I assure you. I have learned to do so now. By the same token, I feel honor-bound to always honor another's boundaries too. If someone tells me, No — I don't even ask why. I just say OK. I don't require them to give me reasons why, or excuses, or justifications or any other nonsense. No is enough. Whether it's a plant, an animal, a child, or an adult. In my book, NO is a sacred strategic boundary and I cannot violate it. And that goes both ways. :)

Divide By Zero said:
Was that selfish? In a way yes, but it wasn't until I did that - she woke up and apologized profusely. Before then, she would give me an attitude that she had a "hard day". Hard day I took as an excuse and felt pity for.
Yep. That sounds about right. She was asleep. And you woke her up. And she got your message in her gut that you meant it. And when people get it in the gut, they know they can't fall back on their little pity-ploys because their little reading-instrument finally kicks in and they KNOW their old non-sense will not work. In a way, what was required was for YOU to make up your mind that her bahavior was no longer acceptable. And when we make up our minds — with no counter-thoughts, counter-intentions, counter-emotions, counter-actions — other people get it and, sometimes even if someone is a psycho, or a bully, they will back down and back off. I have done this myself many, many times. It's as if they meet a rock-solid stone barrier that they cannot penetrate, or dissolve, or chip away at, or deceive, or dupe, or seduce, or attempt any other assault they can imagine.

You stand your ground and refuse to budge and refuse to allow anything in. All their arrows just hit the rock and fall at your feet. They cannot use pleas (please) for sympathy, or poor me, or how can you be so cruel, or whatever flavor of the moment they can think of using. It just all falls flat - splat.

I have actually been in at least 3 situations where some guy was totally shouting and yelling and raging about 6 inches away from my face and making all kinds of incredible accusations (none of which were even true) as if they were possessed by some demonic fiend (one even attempted to use the fact that it was Halloween Night in an attempt to threaten me with goblins and demons at large — and in one way he was right — one was sitting right inside his little psyche), and I just looked them straight in the eyes and let them rant & rave. Frankly, it was all I could do NOT to laugh. Because their behavior was actually awesome. I wanted to applaud when they were finished. But, regardless of all their venom and hate, it just did not enter and connect with me internally. Sorry. I think I digressed there.

Below you mention guilt. Yeah, what they were trying to do was induce shame and guilt in me. But I knew that was all bogus and I refused to accept it or feel it.

Yeah — Strategic Selfishness sounds like a very good idea. An attitude we may need to adopt (even temporarily) in order to extricate ourselves from a bad situation. I remember telling that psycho woman I talked about — who I gave that $10,000 to — that I'd rather be the star of my own movie than a bit-part player in hers. And you know what? She actually got it. Maybe because I was FINALLY speaking HER language? LOLOL :)

Divide By Zero said:
Selfishness could also be mixed up with guilt. Sometimes guilt creates this LOSE-LOSE situation where we give and give and never feel like it's enough. Being able to be selfish seems to be one strategic way for those to get out of relationships with tons of feeding and control. So, I guess as a tool it can be powerful. Of course, if you were truly deep down selfish- you would not feel doubt in it afterwards. I think that is the proper check valve for it.
OK DBZ. After reading your explanation, I'm understanding better how you're using the word selfish. And it seems not to be aligned with that dictionary definition I provided earlier. Thanks for clarifying. I really like that term, Strategic Selfishness. Good one.

Divide By Zero said:
Sorry about the analogy being crazy difficult to follow.
I tried I tried, lol. I shall try again with more specific examples to paint a picture.
No apology necessary. As I said, it made me laugh for two days. I still laugh whenever I think about it.

Divide By Zero said:
It's basically where you have something that has to do a job. A pump has to move water from A to B. If A is too high, it has to come on and move it to B. A sensor is what says how high the water is and how fast the pump is working.

The program- or unconscious part of the machine is the controller- the brains.

The brains decide when to turn on the pump (based on level) and how fast to put the pump (based on levels and how fast it is already going).

In simple programs, it will just turn the pump on at a specific level- let's say 10 feet high and run it at full speed.

Smarter ones would know how fast the tank A is going up and be able to use a slower speed for the pump to save energy and what not.

Sometimes the tank might give a wrong number, like 255 feet! Sometimes the pump speed can be reported wrong.

In these cases, the brains will get confused and start to do crazy things, like run the pump until tank A is bone dry- and that can hurt the pump. This "emotional" input to the program is taken literally without question.

The smarter self-analysis types of controls/brains can say- Hey wait a minute, how is it that the tank is not changing? Or hey, how come the pump says it is at a slow speed when I asked for a fast speed? In that case, instead of continuing to do the stupid thing of assuming everything is working- the brains can give a warning. Some times it can use other sensors (senses?) to find the problem, ask other pumps to help (if they exist), or alert the operator who watches over the pumps.

The emotions/sensors being stuck is like you said, the clouds are stuck- and those controllers don't like that either. They have a job to do, like we do. So that's where I saw the analogy fit. Just so you know why pumping is so important, and a chuckle... I work at a sewage plant! If the pumps don't work and we don't know, the s^&* hits the floor
Pretty darn funny — that last part. And thank you for taking the time to break-down your analogy so that I could understand it better. I think Richard S said he really liked your analogy because he, himself, worked with machines and easily grasped the connection you were making with emotions and thoughts using your pump analogy.

I'm afraid that I am still unable to make the connection. However, from your expanded explanation, I can definitely more easily understand how the machine itself works — more or less.

What I'm failing to grasp is what each of the machine's parts represent vis-a-vis our emotions. I'm not sure what the pump represents, what the sensor represents, what the water level represents, what the brains/controllers represent and the shifting from Tank A to Tank B represents.

I can see your explanation making sense, but I still can't see what each part of that machine you're describing represents. Is it possible that I'd need to have some basic understanding of how a machine — any machine — works in order to comprehend your analogy? Because I have zero idea about how any machine actually works. I'm trying to think of a machine that I'm familiar with and know how it works, and I cannot.

Well, that's an interesting thing to find out about myself. I had no idea that I had no idea how machines or mechanical gadgets work. They are all alien non-life forms to me. What a shock. :) And, along with having no idea how they work, I pretty much dislike machines of every kind (even though they DO make all our lives easier and less labor intensive).

What I most dislike about them is the NOISE they make. They all sound obnoxiously ugly to me. I know I would feel differently if they were quiet and noiseless. So it's not the machines themselves that I dislike, it's the noise they all make that I dislike. Well, good. I just discovered that as I was typing this. Thanks for shocking me into that realization, DBZ! :)

And thanks again for going to the trouble of clarifying that analogy. And for that little shock! :)
 

Divide by Zero

The Living Force
13TT-

Thanks for the feedback on the selfishness. The term is just my idea, it helped me see it without being a baby about it. I saw a purpose that had to be answered. So, if I felt drained and tired, I was able to set limits and realize it was MY RESPITE. But on and off it's not always correct and I can feel guilty and bad. But where it works well is when others understand it too and can relate. I'm lucky in that more than half my co workers understand this and we can both help eachother and give eachother space. I may talk a lot about work, but hey- we spend 1/3 or more of our days in it, for those of us that have to work full time.

The analogy is a bit tough to hash out into specific aspects, I tend to see analogies that are not so cut and dry- but this is an interesting exercise to do. Sometimes I fix things at work without even having to hash out the details, but by feel- so I operate a lot of times on intuition followed up by fact checking. I end up not having to know every step of the process, but get the same results for much less testing and fiddling around.

I would see the pump as our body- it does the physical work that we have to do. I suppose the brain is also doing work- in cases where we have to figure out a solution or do a non-physical but productive job like write, read, etc.

The water levels are just the work load, what needs to be done- whether it is physical work or mental work. Moving stuff from tank A to B is just a task, it's nothing of specific importance here.

The sensors are our senses, sometimes it's purely 5 senses (physical), but in dealing with the controller- things that don't always match up to expected or predictions could be similar to emotions.

The controller/brain of the machine is similar to our conscious brain- the frontal cortex- the one that makes up the "reality" that we see, it's programmed to look for specific things and react on that. Logic- like how we think we should react, how we think people want us to act and so on.

So, with the controller- it will follow predefined logic to do what it has to do based on those sensors inputs. BUT it can and does filter out the sensors/senses. The less the controller listens to all of the senses, the less it knows and the more it can hit a point where things "don't make sense". If it decides to just keep chugging along, it can keep ignoring those "bad readings" and maybe work or maybe break down the system.

The "emotional" sense is tricky to fit into the analogy. In the book "Blink" sometimes we can see, hear, etc something that directly gets picked up by our "gut" and alerts us without our conscious brain even knowing why. It's up to the controller to be able to correct itself in those cases. But, that takes learning. The programmer can't know of every single possible condition and only tries to get so much.

So now I get the idea that Artificial Intelligence, the learning and self adjusting of that controller can explain us. After all, how are we any different than 2d animals or insects/plants? They have intelligence, too! So do people who follow authority but don't think for themselves. They think, but in a limited range.

Maybe the AI of us, is this exact thing that is the work, to question your own self based on what ONE feels, not what one is told? I get more why people don't do this though, in machines/etc it is usually cost and time effective to NOT add this learning behavior because it requires making mistakes to learn. In production environments you want to keep things safe and always overcompensate. Funny, because that is exactly what we see with people becoming either more questioning or MORE authoritarian. Separation of the wheat and the tares perhaps?
 
OMG! Divide-By-Zero -- That break-down was totally great! Thank you so much for taking the time to dissect it like that. That helped me a lot. I'm seeing now why I've been having difficulty grasping some of the concepts and ideas discussed on this Forum.

I have to think about what your post is bringing up for me to think about. Sorry. That was pretty weirdly said. Thanks DBZ for triggering whatever it is that I need to examine. Jeeesh! I can't even find the words because I don't even know what I'm trying to say. But I will. :)
 

Joe

Administrator
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FOTCM Member
Approaching Infinity said:
I think it's important to clarify what we mean by 'belief' here. On its own, it's a pretty neutral word: something we accept as true or real. I think most "external" beliefs should be tentative. We can be pretty sure something is true (e.g., that JFK was assassinated on 11/22/63), less sure about others (e.g., who pulled the trigger), but open to changing that belief with new evidence, or just admitting that we're not sure and there's not enough evidence.

Values are a type of belief too. If I value truth, I must accept that some things are true and others are not. I "believe" in truth. Maybe it's better to call these sorts of beliefs "convictions", "core beliefs" or something else. They're things that find their source within us, the core beliefs that influence how we see the world, and how we act in it. They also determine how we form external beliefs. For example, we may SAY we value truth, but believe in things without evidence, or ignore evidence that might change our beliefs.
Yeah, I think my definition of 'belief' there was something that we have no way of verifying or experiencing as real, if only for ourselves. Values are a type of belief, but if we live them, if we make them tangibly real in our lives, then they're no longer beliefs by that definition. But you make a good point when you say that if some of our beliefs were proven false, that proof would have to be personally verifiable if we are to avoid creating another belief. It's a real sticky wicket and it looks more and more like there are precious few things of a spiritual or esoteric nature that we can verify as 'real' in any concrete way.

Approaching Infinity said:
A could years ago, the Cs gave the following advice:

8/16/14
Just work daily at becoming more aware on three levels
1. Body and immediate environment,
2. Wider world affairs,
3. Cosmos and spirit.
I think it's good advice, and goes back to how you started this thread: with Dispenza's description of habits. The first step of knowledge is self-knowledge, and the first step of self-knowledge is of our body and its environment. As we expand our awareness on that foundation, we also expand our knowledge and develop our values. And in tandem, we form a worldview that harmonizes everything together, striving to approach something that is consistent with all the facts at our disposable, something that is true.
It is good advice, and all the more so because it breaks things down to simply working on becoming aware. Now THAT is something that CAN be verified in a fairly satisfactory way, because we can at least gain some direct feedback as to how we are doing in that task. We can notice that we are noticing more things, that we are making less mistakes etc. especially with the help of feedback from others. So my definition of a belief is, more or less, the act of assuming something as true for which we do not receive any direct feedback that would allow us, at least in some measure, to know as true.


Approaching Infinity said:
I was raised nominally Catholic. Went to church, said my prayers, but that's about it. I zoned out in church for the most part, and was never really "instructed" in all the various sorts of Catholic beliefs, just some vague notions of a nice heaven and a nasty hell. My parents never made it personal, e.g., "Don't do that, or you'll go to hell!" Basically, religion was never a big part of my life growing up. In fact, I think the most theological discussion I had as a child was with another Catholic friend of mine. We were playing hand hockey, and whenever I was goalie I'd be too afraid of the ball to put myself in front of it to stop it. He advised me, "You just have to tell yourself that if you don't stop the ball, you're going to hell!" Can't say it helped that much! :halo:

But as I got older and stopped going to church (again for equally vague reasons), I found myself still saying my prayers at night. I remember being surprised to discover that I had a fear that if I didn't say my prayers, something bad might happen (would God be displeased with me?). So even though I never had religious beliefs forcefully thrown at me, they still had an effect. Maybe a year or two later, however, that fear wasn't there. Now I look back and half smile, half shake my head.
That's pretty funny, and interesting too because it meshes with my assumption that, even though someone, especially a 'Westerner' might not be a practicing Christian or Muslim or whatever, we cannot avoid absorbing that core idea of 'heaven and hell'. But then the question becomes, does that programming REALLY come from monotheism, or is is it the (distorted) product of some innate understanding we are all born with? Is it perhaps evidence of some fundamental spiritual awareness that is a function of our fundamental 'spiritual' natures?

Approaching Infinity said:
For me, 4D is a possbility. It's fascinating. In some ways it kinda makes sense, in others it's a mystery. It may or may not be true. And if true, I may or may not make it in this lifetime. I don't lose sleep over it. What matters for me now is what's in front of me: myself in my immediate environment, what's going on in the world, how I react to and act within and with that environment, including the people I consider my family, and trying to place all that within as wide a context as possible. In reference to 4D, basically this: if it is a real possibility, what aspects about it can I put into practice now? It's no use having far-off vision of some "great future" and just expecting or waiting for it to happen. Better to do what I can NOW.

And I'm sure in another 10 years, I'll look back and half smile and half shake my head about how vague or wrong some of the what I believe or value now is/was. But, hey, that's life!
Thanks for that AI, it's a good approach for those who are wont to delve into the minutiae but need to remember to not worry the unknowable details. And one thing I've learned thus far, is what you say: there is little doubt that at some point in the future I'll look back and understand then how wrong I am now.
 

neonix

Jedi Council Member
Plugging into our past self

What do most of us do each morning after we’ve been plugged into our reality by these sensory reminders of who we are, where we are, and so forth? Well, we remain plugged into this past self by following a highly routine, unconscious set of automatic behaviors.

For example, you probably wake up on the same side of the bed, slip into your robe the same way as always, look into the mirror to remember who you are, and shower following an automatic routine. Then you groom yourself to look like everyone expects you to look, and brush your teeth in your usual memorized fashion. You drink coffee out of your favorite mug and eat your customary breakfast cereal. You put on the jacket you always wear and unconsciously zip it up.

Next, you automatically drive to work along your accustomed, convenient route. At work you do the familiar things that you have memorized how to do so well. You see the same people, who push your same emotional buttons, which causes you to think the same thoughts about those people and your work and your life.

Later, you hurry up and go home, so you can hurry up and eat, so you can hurry up and watch your favorite TV show, so you can hurry up and go to bed, so you can hurry up and do it all over again. Has your brain changed at all that day?

Why are you secretly expecting something different to show up in your life, when you think the same thoughts, perform the same actions, and experience the same emotions every single day? Isn’t that the definition of insanity? All of us have fallen prey to this type of limited life, one time or another.
Usually you can change your living habits only if you have strong bounds with family or friends that support you and lighten you from domesticity.

Western society is destroying family bonds, by promoting nuclear family model or sometimes single parent family model. In western world it is not accepted when adult children live in the same house with parents. But in extended family model it's normal. You cannot change your life style if you don't build strong supportive family bounds or community that will help you.

Laura mentioned in one of her books that in some families, the same souls was incarnated, generation by generation. That's why people have strong bounds in their families. Nowadays theres no strong bounds in families because there's no strong connection on the soul level.

People don't have enough energy to change their life, that's why they need networking to move forward their life on the new tracks. Nowadays people are conditioned to live alone in their own houses where they have plenty space for themselves. And as Cs said, it's very hard to achieve something alone, you have to start networking if you want to achieve something more.

This would suggest there is a strong disconnect between what you consciously think you want and what you REALLY "want", i.e. what you BELIEVE 'behind the scenes'.
Sometimes family don't want you to do some things. Sometimes you was programmed by school, TV, politics, society and you afraid to brake this rules. For example, I don't have cell phone, and my family think that I'm weird. Also my family thinks that paelo diet is only my airs (conceit) and they don't believe me when I tell them that I have food allergy.

That's why you need supportive community that think the same way like you. And will not judge you.
 
On the subject of HABITS.

I don't mind having habits so much as I mind doing things habitually without CONSCIOUS INTENTION. It's OK with me to brush my teeth the same way every day. But it makes a big difference if I really PAY ATTENTION and FOCUS on what I'm doing rather than letting my mind wander while thinking of something else rather than what is right in front of me and what I am doing at that very moment.

I learned from a former housemate of mine (back in 1994) about how to do everything in a conscious and conscientious manner. Her movements were not rushed or hurried. They were slow and deliberate. I would watch her as she cooked, or cleaned or did her hair & make-up, or watered her plants. And every step of the way she moved deliberately, slowly, and paid attention to every little detail. She would actually WATCH her own movements as she did them. She didn't look at something else as her hand was reaching for a cup. I used to call it "Fairy Consciousness". :) No slamming & banging things about, no tossing things down, no sloppy movements. And she didn't break things, or drop things, or make mistakes. I guess you might say she purposely created a condition known as "being in the flow" - or "being in the zone".

Observing her in operation was actually a joy and aesthetically pleasing delight. It was like watching art in motion. And I decided that I wanted to learn how to operate that way too. And my first step towards doing that was to S-L-O-W DOWN. Refuse and refrain from rushing and hurrying. Becoming deliberate and making myself pay attention to what I was actually doing. As I practiced this, I started to feel like I was creating a sort of dance. In my case, having music playing while doing household tasks helps a lot to focus on what I'm doing.
 

Approaching Infinity

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13 Twirling Triskeles said:
On the subject of HABITS.

I don't mind having habits so much as I mind doing things habitually without CONSCIOUS INTENTION. It's OK with me to brush my teeth the same way every day. But it makes a big difference if I really PAY ATTENTION and FOCUS on what I'm doing rather than letting my mind wander while thinking of something else rather than what is right in front of me and what I am doing at that very moment.
It's funny, about a year or so ago, while brushing my teeth, I realized, "I always brush my teeth the SAME WAY!" It annoyed me that I just automatically followed the same movements, and my mind would wander. So right there I gave myself the task of brushing my teeth a different way every time. So instead of starting on the back, bottom, right side, I'd do the opposite. Then I'd go through a pattern, first starting in one "quadrant", then proceeding through each one until I completed the cycle over several days. Each time, I'd think, "Well, there's no new way to brush my teeth!", then I'd think of another way - forward to back, back and forth diagonally, vice versa, switching it up. Going on a year now, I still haven't stopped figuring out new ways to brush my teeth! LOL. It's nothing life-shattering, but it's still a challenge: it forces me to pay attention, to remember where I am in the sequence, which combinations I haven't tried yet.

I learned from a former housemate of mine (back in 1994) about how to do everything in a conscious and conscientious manner. Her movements were not rushed or hurried. They were slow and deliberate. I would watch her as she cooked, or cleaned or did her hair & make-up, or watered her plants. And every step of the way she moved deliberately, slowly, and paid attention to every little detail. She would actually WATCH her own movements as she did them. She didn't look at something else as her hand was reaching for a cup. I used to call it "Fairy Consciousness". :) No slamming & banging things about, no tossing things down, no sloppy movements. And she didn't break things, or drop things, or make mistakes. I guess you might say she purposely created a condition known as "being in the flow" - or "being in the zone".
I think that's a great thing to strive for. Most of our movements are sloppy, and I think many people aren't even aware of how their bodies are moving. It reminds me of several observations about Gurdjieff too: every movement was controlled and deliberate. He had total and constant awareness of his body and its relation to his environment.

Observing her in operation was actually a joy and aesthetically pleasing delight. It was like watching art in motion. And I decided that I wanted to learn how to operate that way too. And my first step towards doing that was to S-L-O-W DOWN. Refuse and refrain from rushing and hurrying. Becoming deliberate and making myself pay attention to what I was actually doing. As I practiced this, I started to feel like I was creating a sort of dance. In my case, having music playing while doing household tasks helps a lot to focus on what I'm doing.
Then again, sometimes you need to move quickly. The above brought to mind another story about Gurdjieff. Some peeps at the Prieure were building a stone wall. If I remember correctly, they were doing it slowly, not very efficiently. G came along and starting laying the stones and mortar lightning fast all on his own. Not only was he 10 times as fast, he did it perfectly.
 
Approaching Infinity said:
It's funny, about a year or so ago, while brushing my teeth, I realized, "I always brush my teeth the SAME WAY!" It annoyed me that I just automatically followed the same movements, and my mind would wander. So right there I gave myself the task of brushing my teeth a different way every time. So instead of starting on the back, bottom, right side, I'd do the opposite. Then I'd go through a pattern, first starting in one "quadrant", then proceeding through each one until I completed the cycle over several days. Each time, I'd think, "Well, there's no new way to brush my teeth!", then I'd think of another way - forward to back, back and forth diagonally, vice versa, switching it up. Going on a year now, I still haven't stopped figuring out new ways to brush my teeth! LOL. It's nothing life-shattering, but it's still a challenge: it forces me to pay attention, to remember where I am in the sequence, which combinations I haven't tried yet.
Good story AI. Yeah I agree. It is fun to Approach Infinite ways of doing things. I realize my post was exclusively related to being more conscious about performing habits rather than changing my habits entirely. I think they're both valid points, no? But your example does inspire me to want to do the same with regard to some of my own habits. So thank you for the inspiration! :)

13TT said:
I learned from a former housemate of mine (back in 1994) about how to do everything in a conscious and conscientious manner. Her movements were not rushed or hurried. They were slow and deliberate. I would watch her as she cooked, or cleaned or did her hair & make-up, or watered her plants. And every step of the way she moved deliberately, slowly, and paid attention to every little detail. She would actually WATCH her own movements as she did them. She didn't look at something else as her hand was reaching for a cup. I used to call it "Fairy Consciousness". No slamming & banging things about, no tossing things down, no sloppy movements. And she didn't break things, or drop things, or make mistakes. I guess you might say she purposely created a condition known as "being in the flow" - or "being in the zone".
Approaching Infinity said:
I think that's a great thing to strive for. Most of our movements are sloppy, and I think many people aren't even aware of how their bodies are moving. It reminds me of several observations about Gurdjieff too: every movement was controlled and deliberate. He had total and constant awareness of his body and its relation to his environment.
13TT said:
Observing her in operation was actually a joy and aesthetically pleasing delight. It was like watching art in motion. And I decided that I wanted to learn how to operate that way too. And my first step towards doing that was to S-L-O-W DOWN. Refuse and refrain from rushing and hurrying. Becoming deliberate and making myself pay attention to what I was actually doing. As I practiced this, I started to feel like I was creating a sort of dance. In my case, having music playing while doing household tasks helps a lot to focus on what I'm doing.
Approaching Infinity said:
Then again, sometimes you need to move quickly. The above brought to mind another story about Gurdjieff. Some peeps at the Prieure were building a stone wall. If I remember correctly, they were doing it slowly, not very efficiently. G came along and starting laying the stones and mortar lightning fast all on his own. Not only was he 10 times as fast, he did it perfectly.
Absolutely right on. I think your point is that whether we default to fast or slow, it's still a default and it's still a habit whether done consciously or un-consciously. So I will re-examine my basic premise again and see about altering some of my habits — beyond making myself consciously aware of doing them. Thank you for pointing that little detail out to me. :)

You've hit the nail on the head there. Because, while my friend would invariably move slowly regardless of the situation, I had to change my fast & furious default movements to slow down. So I can do both — when needed — or just when I choose to. I do like having options. :)

I've also been in G's situation where I'm watching someone execute a task painfully slowly. However, in my situations, I have to step back and refrain from interfering because in those cases, it's not my place to interfere. But I can definitely move likety-split — and not trip.

Yeah, I too have a total and constant awareness of my body and its relationship to the environment. Which is probably why I can stop on a dime when I'm out walking fast and come to a light that changes from green to red and I've got one foot on the edge of the curb and one foot in the air ready to step down into the street and I can halt right there and remain balanced. I learned that little trick in the dance community. Where I had to dance my way through a crowded dance floor without interrupting other dancers' movements or making them shift aside for me. And a lot of them had their eyes closed as well so they didn't even see me. Used to be worse though. In the days when people would dance with lit cigarettes waving about or drinks in their hands.

I remember years ago -- when we were still wearing high heels to walk to work -- and I was crossing a busy street and my right heel became stuck in one of those grates. Without missing a beat or going off balance, I stopped mid-stride, placed my right foot back into my shoe while standing on my left foot, slipped that foot into the shoe, lifted the foot, and carried on walking as if nothing had happened. The driver who had stopped for me to cross, leaned out his window and applauded saying, "Wow! That was the most graceful recovery I've ever seen!" I know. Silly Story, yes? :)
 

nicklebleu

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
13 Twirling Triskeles said:
I learned from a former housemate of mine (back in 1994) about how to do everything in a conscious and conscientious manner. Her movements were not rushed or hurried. They were slow and deliberate. I would watch her as she cooked, or cleaned or did her hair & make-up, or watered her plants. And every step of the way she moved deliberately, slowly, and paid attention to every little detail. She would actually WATCH her own movements as she did them. She didn't look at something else as her hand was reaching for a cup. I used to call it "Fairy Consciousness". :) No slamming & banging things about, no tossing things down, no sloppy movements. And she didn't break things, or drop things, or make mistakes. I guess you might say she purposely created a condition known as "being in the flow" - or "being in the zone".

Observing her in operation was actually a joy and aesthetically pleasing delight. It was like watching art in motion. And I decided that I wanted to learn how to operate that way too. And my first step towards doing that was to S-L-O-W DOWN. Refuse and refrain from rushing and hurrying. Becoming deliberate and making myself pay attention to what I was actually doing. As I practiced this, I started to feel like I was creating a sort of dance. In my case, having music playing while doing household tasks helps a lot to focus on what I'm doing.
13TT - well said!

That's were I am at at this present point in time.

Aboit 3-4 weeks ago I realised, that I too had to S-L-O-W way, way D-O-W-N. I am living a rushed, busy life, loading muself with more and more tasks, so that all day I have a list of things I need to go through. And even though I like doing everone of these tasks, the growing mountain has taken the fun out of most of them. I then have two modes of operation: Either I don't start the task at all (doesn't happen very often), or force myself to do it (usual mode). Hence the exhaustion.

I started a mindfulness program two weeks back that essentially helps me ground my body, and quit just "living in my brain". And I have been brushing my teeth since then in a deliberate and aware manner too. But I like the description of your friend. something I want to aspire to - to do as much as I can "present in the moment" and savor it, not dissociate and jump around in my mind and do stuff mechanically. So thanks again for your post.

On a slightly different note - I had a long telephone conversation with one of my sisters, and she has a similar problem. She told me that her counselor told her, that she needed to learn to "stagger" through life (as in a drunken gait - German "torkeln"). Let me explain: I used to always create a mental list in the morning as soon as I got out of bed: Today I have to/ need to do X, Y and Z. And if I got through half my list I felt quite satisfied, but most days this wouldn't happen, so I felt frustrated, lazy and inefficient. I didn't really realise that the main problem was not my performance, but that my lists were unrealistic to start with.

With "Staggering" you don't create any lists. You might see the vacuum cleaner lying around, so you put that one away. Then you take a break. Then you think you might want to clean the windows, so you start doing that, but after half a window, you already have enough, so you stop and take a break. And so on.

For me that turned out to be a brilliant concept, because when I usually start something, I put an endpoint to it - either I have to finish the task, or do a predetermined amount, before I am "allowed to quit". And that means, that sometimes this prevents me from starting at all, or I have to flog myself through it. Now when the idea comes to mind, that next I'm going to do X, I just start doing it, until I've had enough of it, and then I stop. It might not be finished, but instead of one herculian effort that leaves me flat and exhausted at the end of the day, I do bit by bit and enjoy the process, as long as I do, and then leave the rest for another time.

It might sound simplistic, but for me that has made a huge difference.
 
nicklebleu said:
13 Twirling Triskeles said:
I learned from a former housemate of mine (back in 1994) about how to do everything in a conscious and conscientious manner. Her movements were not rushed or hurried. They were slow and deliberate. I would watch her as she cooked, or cleaned or did her hair & make-up, or watered her plants. And every step of the way she moved deliberately, slowly, and paid attention to every little detail. She would actually WATCH her own movements as she did them. She didn't look at something else as her hand was reaching for a cup. I used to call it "Fairy Consciousness". :) No slamming & banging things about, no tossing things down, no sloppy movements. And she didn't break things, or drop things, or make mistakes. I guess you might say she purposely created a condition known as "being in the flow" - or "being in the zone".

Observing her in operation was actually a joy and aesthetically pleasing delight. It was like watching art in motion. And I decided that I wanted to learn how to operate that way too. And my first step towards doing that was to S-L-O-W DOWN. Refuse and refrain from rushing and hurrying. Becoming deliberate and making myself pay attention to what I was actually doing. As I practiced this, I started to feel like I was creating a sort of dance. In my case, having music playing while doing household tasks helps a lot to focus on what I'm doing.
13TT - well said!

That's were I am at at this present point in time.

Aboit 3-4 weeks ago I realised, that I too had to S-L-O-W way, way D-O-W-N. I am living a rushed, busy life, loading muself with more and more tasks, so that all day I have a list of things I need to go through. And even though I like doing everone of these tasks, the growing mountain has taken the fun out of most of them. I then have two modes of operation: Either I don't start the task at all (doesn't happen very often), or force myself to do it (usual mode). Hence the exhaustion.

I started a mindfulness program two weeks back that essentially helps me ground my body, and quit just "living in my brain". And I have been brushing my teeth since then in a deliberate and aware manner too. But I like the description of your friend. something I want to aspire to - to do as much as I can "present in the moment" and savor it, not dissociate and jump around in my mind and do stuff mechanically. So thanks again for your post.

On a slightly different note - I had a long telephone conversation with one of my sisters, and she has a similar problem. She told me that her counselor told her, that she needed to learn to "stagger" through life (as in a drunken gait - German "torkeln"). Let me explain: I used to always create a mental list in the morning as soon as I got out of bed: Today I have to/ need to do X, Y and Z. And if I got through half my list I felt quite satisfied, but most days this wouldn't happen, so I felt frustrated, lazy and inefficient. I didn't really realise that the main problem was not my performance, but that my lists were unrealistic to start with.

With "Staggering" you don't create any lists. You might see the vacuum cleaner lying around, so you put that one away. Then you take a break. Then you think you might want to clean the windows, so you start doing that, but after half a window, you already have enough, so you stop and take a break. And so on.

For me that turned out to be a brilliant concept, because when I usually start something, I put an endpoint to it - either I have to finish the task, or do a predetermined amount, before I am "allowed to quit". And that means, that sometimes this prevents me from starting at all, or I have to flog myself through it. Now when the idea comes to mind, that next I'm going to do X, I just start doing it, until I've had enough of it, and then I stop. It might not be finished, but instead of one herculian effort that leaves me flat and exhausted at the end of the day, I do bit by bit and enjoy the process, as long as I do, and then leave the rest for another time.

It might sound simplistic, but for me that has made a huge difference.
OMG nicklebleu! I must be totally dense. I would never - in a million years - have thought of doing that -- the "Staggering" approach. As soon as I read that, it occurred to me that Staggering would be the VERY best thing for me to do myself. It would SO totally go against my habitual grain. It would be SO difficult for me to stop a cycle-of-action BEFORE I completed it. I totally LOVE it. Thank you so much for that information. I am really excited to try doing that. What a concept??!! I think it will be FUN!

As for s-l-o-w-i-n-g down. That too was really difficult for me to force myself to do. I was always in a rush and a hurry -- I always had a to-do-list that had me stressed to the max. There was a time when I was working at home and putting in 80 hr work weeks and 3-hrs per night of sleep -- for 2 years straight. I was so exhausted that my eyes would be closing while I was doing some of my more mindless chores (like sweeping the kitchen floor). And it seemed as if the more I had to do, the more people wanted me to do. I got to the point where I had to tell new people I met who wanted my phone number for us to get together in the future that I was so sorry but I didn't even have any time for the friends I already had so I couldn't add any more new friends into my life. Is that totally INSANE or what???!!!!

Yeah -- that "living in the brain" thing. That is a real mind killer. At least if I'm understanding you to mean the same thing I would mean if I were saying that. What I mean is being caught up in all my Little i's thoughts. If I were just identified with my Observer I, that's a totally different story. The point of making myself slow down was to get myself out of my head -- meaning to stop listening to all those Little i's and their incessant chattering and create some space between my Observing I and all those ranting & raving Little i's. And by slowing down and focusing and paying attention to my physical movements, it was like a sort of meditation. Like Feng Shui-ing my mind.

It really did help me to have music. Not as a distraction so much as a rhythm -- because I very rarely listen to music with lyrics since lyrics just jam me back into my Little i state of mind. Sometimes it works for me to just hum to myself - making up little melodies of my own. One of the few exceptions to music with lyrics is opera. Because the words are not in english so those lyrics (because I don't know what they're actually saying or meaning) don't have the same effect as lyrics in english. I love lyrics in just about any language, as long as the words are NOT english. I want to enjoy the music itself, not the words. If I want words, I prefer reading them. OK. I'm digressing. My point is that you might even try music to create a slow rhythm that you can follow along with when you're first attempting to slow yourself down. As an assist until you can go slow without any rhythm reminders, yes? :)

Thanks so much for your reply nicklebleu -- and for including that information about Staggering. You know what? That almost sounds like how children operate, yes? They do something (usually playing) until they're ready to move on to something else. But as adults we may have lost our innate sense of playfulness. I realize we are no longer children so we do need to act as adults, but that's probably why I enjoy hanging out occasionally with kids. I get to be one of them for a while and drop all that adult stuff for a brief reprieve. :)
 

kinyash

Jedi
FOTCM Member
Joe,

Really great topic on our hidden beliefs, and there is no doubt in my mind that they do shape our lives. These beliefs are imprinted onto our minds right from birth so even though you may claim "not to follow your parents religion" for example, there are certain aspects of that religion that strongly guide your behavior.

I think that many of us walk around with beliefs which we do not consciously recognize, and these result in automatic behaviors. This is especially true when you look at some of your behaviors and your preferences in say mundane things you buy like Newspapers, soft drinks, etc. For most people who have not carefully looked at say nutrition and make a conscious effort to change, they end up eating and drinking what has been unconsciously planted in their minds through crafty advertising,family and cultural eating habits etc. Their habits are instilled by unconscious beliefs.

Much counselling is centered around uncovering unconscious beliefs that are embedded deep in the psyche. I recall reading in some self-help book that if you observe a behavior that really infuriates you, it's possible that you also do the same thing perhaps in a different context. The anger that you express is actually directed at yourself, but you are not yet ready to consciously face it. I have a friend who is a terrible gossip and when I tactfully tried to let her know she blatantly accused me of being the gossip. However, when her loose tongue caused several of her friends to stop talking to her, she recognized that she had a problem. Recognition in itself did not solve the issue, but it did come as a mild shock to her.

Many of the exercises that are described in this thread (and the Work) actually help us to unearth unconscious beliefs and then change them. Some beliefs are so deeply embedded that even if something that totally contradicts the belief happens, we do not see it. This can be very scary as you can lead your life literally believing a lie, and unless some accidental shock pulls you out of it, you will experience unnecessary pain and anguish, which will be ever increasing.

The question of beliefs is very interesting because beliefs are not objectively real or true! They are very real for the individual to whom they apply (subjective), and thus very difficult to face. However in order to operate on the earthly plane, we do need some beliefs to abide by. Joe's idea of some core values therefore gives a kind of code of conduct by which one can abide.
 
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