Recapitulation

engagedinattempting

Padawan Learner
I have read The Wave and Adventures and some other articles in the past three weeks, amazed with and thankful for all the learning opportunities being presented here. I had seen Castenada's The Active Side referenced several times and began reading it yesterday.

It begins (for those who may not have read it) with Juan Matus encouraging Castenada to recall memorable events in his life, and to "take all the time in the world, but hurry". Castenada, over a period of time, recalls this and that and the other, but all are unacceptable to Juan Matus as being piles of "nonsense", as being too personal. During my reading, I stop occasionally and think back on my own life, searching for a memorable event that, as Juan Matus explains, will stand the test of time, that I will be "in the thick of...but not quite personally..." that will have a "dark touch of the impersonal". I, like Castenada, come up with piles of nonsense that I thought were important at the time, but that clearly would not meet these not quite clear standards. I sigh. So hard, this business. I read on.

Juan Matus gives Castenada plenty of time to struggle with this matter and, eventually, offers help. He reminds Castenada of a story Castenada once told him, and orders him to recount it again in the finest detail. It is a very sad story of a friend taking Castenada to an aging -jezebel- who will perform a most amazing and seductive dance in front of a mirror. Castenada goes, the -jezebel- dances. Castenada feels such loneliness and despair as he watches that he runs from the room. Juan Matus explains that the story is memorable because it touches everyone in the world, that no matter what we think of ourselves or what anyone else thinks of us, we are all the same: "Senseless figures in front of a mirror".

I close the book and think some more about my life. There is nothing that comes to mind.

A few hours later it's time for me to do EE. I'm not looking forward to this, my fifth exercise, because the last two times I developed some weird resistance to the round breathing part, manifesting as an extremely uncomfortable feeling of tension in my lower back coupled with feelings of breathlessness and almost unbearable complete-body heat. However, I tell myself, I've learned more useful and important things about myself and this world in the last three weeks than I've learned in the entire rest of my life. Everything Laura's written that I've checked out is undeniably true and (I keep talking) if she says this EE is a good thing I'll keep on with it until I see results or come to believe strongly that it's not for me.

The breathing exercise is wonderful as the thought came to me at the beginning of round breathing that I shouldn't worry about getting enough air, that I should think about using the breath as it came. And I did and it was good.

I had resolved at the beginning that I would attempt to remain focused during the meditation instead of just zoning out as I had previously. It seemed that the best way for me to do this would be to mentally repeat it as Laura said it. So I did and it was good...so unexpectedly good. Midway through the second recitation I realized that this was the prayer I had wanted to pray all my life, this was the expression of life I wanted to be...I continued listening but couldn't repeat along because I was crying like I hadn't cried since I was a kid. All lies about who I've been and what I've done and how I've treated others disappeared, and I was offered just a peek over the chasm that contains all the hurt and despair and misery I've caused. Such sorrow I felt, but also a sense that, if I can look and admit and accept, I can forgive myself and, more importantly, my other-selves.

Two hours later I'm mostly done with the tears when Juan Matus enters my mind, and with him an amazing memory forgotten for almost twenty years. The memory of a dancing woman.

I was at the small rented house of a new boss, having been invited for drinks. The music was too loud and the new boss and his buddy weren't folks I really wanted to hang out with but, with adequate booze on hand, I felt I could tolerate whatever had to be tolerated. Then a phone call. New boss hangs up and announces that entertainment is on the way. Good, I think, a truckload of pretty young women (I did a lot of wishful thinking), plenty to drink, the night is young...Ha! Through the door comes a skinny, scraggly, tore-down woman of clearly advanced years. Her poor face is a battleground and she is cheaply and raggedly dressed, yet she moves into the room in a dancing, sinuous manner, as though she believes herself magnificently desirable. After her demand for a drink is met, she begins slowly unbuttoning her top as she dances about, cheered on by these two oafs with whom I find myself. I am filled with revulsion for these guys and am embarrassed and sad for the woman. For myself, not much judgement or self-analysis. I am, after all, smart enough and good enough and so above all this that I have the good sense to make hurried excuses and leave.

And my life drifted on.

What am I to make of the fact that I have a dancing woman similar to Castenada's? That the memories of them came to both of us rather effortlessly through the actions of Juan Matus (however fictional they, or even he, might be)?

I don't know what Juan Matus intends for Mr. Castenada, as I haven't read any further. What I'm taking from what I'm viewing as one of my memorable events is this: That the Divine Cosmic Mind or my future-selves or whoever has been trying to speak to me for quite some time and was saying with the dancing woman, in effect, "Look at this, what you've come to, this terrible state of affairs. This was not what you intended!"

And it wasn't what I intended. I know that now. Figures in front of a mirror. Senseless. This is a helpful thing to try to remember for the rest of my life.

I needed to talk to someone about this and, due to my particular circumstances, you good people are it! If all that I've carried on about here is a "pile of nonsense" it will be better for me to know it now instead of later. And if I've taken away entirely the wrong thing or am guilty of some manner of defective thinking, it is certainly not anyone's fault but mine. Thank you past/present/future Laura and Troops for this attempt-at-learning opportunity that all your efforts make possible.
 

Raccoon

The Force is Strong With This One
Thank you all so much. This thread has clarified so many things to me. Thank you--I've ordered the first two of the big four. Also, the past four days I've been doing a combination pipe breathing and recapitulation experiment. Basically I've been pipe breathing and counting, then as shame-filled episodes have come to mind, I've breathed in saying (mentally) "I am now reclaiming my energy/life/spirit/power" and (outbreath) "And giving you back your shame." Each remembered episode lead immediately into another--this went on for hours during a couple of sessions--amazing how much shaming goes on--how much I've absorbed. Pipe breathing out the shame felt much more real than normal breath.

I am feeling much more energized, and connected to others, I think, as a result. I am curious as to how others have tried to make this recapitulation practice practicable. Please correct me if this variation is taking too much liberty with what has been given, and generally help groove me, please.
 

pstott

Jedi
Blaming someone else, if it implies trying to give them responsibility, does no good at all.

We are the only ones to do anything about who and what we are. No one else can make changes for us. On the other hand, without a realistic and accurate picture (which will include seeing the path to where we are now) we can't do anything to change.

Yes indeed - one must move past the blaming - to understanding and then perhaps to forgiving.

Thanks for the book titles Laura - I will see if I can order them online.

It has been many years since I read Gurdjieff's and Ouspensky's works, and I'm afraid it is so easy to slip back into sleep...

Edit:quotes
 

low

The Force is Strong With This One
Laura said:
It seems quite obvious that any individual who wishes to pursue esoteric studies ought to have a clean and fully functional and most of all HEALTHY psyche before he goes wandering off into unknown realms. After all, if your psychological state is such that you cannot deal with your everyday life, how can you possibly trust such a psychological state not to mislead you in studies where you have fewer solid landmarks or feedback mechanisms to guide you?

And so, the very FIRST order of business in any esoteric work is to get psychologically healthy. That's basically what the Gurdjieff "self-remembering" and Mouravieff "introspection" and Castaneda "recapitulation" is all about.
And what happens if your not , and your physical state becomes a permanent distraction , that is necessary in order to attempt to alleviate suffering in the first place ?

Not all body functions can be separated so easily if their essential, or essential to doing " the work ", yet rarely do I see it ever addressed anywhere.

low
 

ana

The Living Force
low said:
Laura said:
It seems quite obvious that any individual who wishes to pursue esoteric studies ought to have a clean and fully functional and most of all HEALTHY psyche before he goes wandering off into unknown realms. After all, if your psychological state is such that you cannot deal with your everyday life, how can you possibly trust such a psychological state not to mislead you in studies where you have fewer solid landmarks or feedback mechanisms to guide you?

And so, the very FIRST order of business in any esoteric work is to get psychologically healthy. That's basically what the Gurdjieff "self-remembering" and Mouravieff "introspection" and Castaneda "recapitulation" is all about.
And what happens if your not , and your physical state becomes a permanent distraction , that is necessary in order to attempt to alleviate suffering in the first place ?

Not all body functions can be separated so easily if their essential, or essential to doing " the work ", yet rarely do I see it ever addressed anywhere.

low
Welcome to the forum low, we recommend all new members to make an introduction in the Newbies section telling a bit about themselves like how you found us and how much of the material here you have read, you can see how others did it to get the idea.

Regarding your comment if your physical state becomes a permanent distraction and there isn't a healthy psyche then other measures like psychological therapy and a good diet should be implemented, you cannot start a house from the roof, don't you think?
 

low

The Force is Strong With This One
Ana said:
low said:
Laura said:
It seems quite obvious that any individual who wishes to pursue esoteric studies ought to have a clean and fully functional and most of all HEALTHY psyche before he goes wandering off into unknown realms. After all, if your psychological state is such that you cannot deal with your everyday life, how can you possibly trust such a psychological state not to mislead you in studies where you have fewer solid landmarks or feedback mechanisms to guide you?

And so, the very FIRST order of business in any esoteric work is to get psychologically healthy. That's basically what the Gurdjieff "self-remembering" and Mouravieff "introspection" and Castaneda "recapitulation" is all about.
And what happens if your not , and your physical state becomes a permanent distraction , that is necessary in order to attempt to alleviate suffering in the first place ?

Not all body functions can be separated so easily if their essential, or essential to doing " the work ", yet rarely do I see it ever addressed anywhere.

low
Welcome to the forum low, we recommend all new members to make an introduction in the Newbies section telling a bit about themselves like how you found us and how much of the material here you have read, you can see how others did it to get the idea.

Regarding your comment if your physical state becomes a permanent distraction and there isn't a healthy psyche then other measures like psychological therapy and a good diet should be implemented, you cannot start a house from the roof, don't you think?
hi Ana,

What I meant was , what if focusing on your physical disabilities constantly ( as one might do in order to walk on a tightrope ) was the only way of alleviating them so they improved , or no longer became a threat / inability to do other essential activities such as self remembering or eating , walking etc


thanks

low
 

ana

The Living Force
low said:
hi Ana,

What I meant was , what if focusing on your physical disabilities constantly ( as one might do in order to walk on a tightrope ) was the only way of alleviating them so they improved , or no longer became a threat / inability to do other essential activities such as self remembering or eating , walking etc


thanks

low
What do you mean by "physical disabilities"? Maybe you can give an example, is it something happening or that have happened to you?
Maybe centering the conversation on a more practical level can help here.
 

low

The Force is Strong With This One
Ana said:
low said:
hi Ana,

What I meant was , what if focusing on your physical disabilities constantly ( as one might do in order to walk on a tightrope ) was the only way of alleviating them so they improved , or no longer became a threat / inability to do other essential activities such as self remembering or eating , walking etc


thanks

low
What do you mean by "physical disabilities"? Maybe you can give an example, is it something happening or that have happened to you?
Maybe centering the conversation on a more practical level can help here.
What is you experience of suffering , mental , emotional, spiritual or physical ?

low
 

ana

The Living Force
low said:
Ana said:
low said:
hi Ana,

What I meant was , what if focusing on your physical disabilities constantly ( as one might do in order to walk on a tightrope ) was the only way of alleviating them so they improved , or no longer became a threat / inability to do other essential activities such as self remembering or eating , walking etc


thanks

low
What do you mean by "physical disabilities"? Maybe you can give an example, is it something happening or that have happened to you?
Maybe centering the conversation on a more practical level can help here.
What is you experience of suffering , mental , emotional, spiritual or physical ?

low
I've suffered in all of them in different intensities, diet was the main reason and I have been taking care of, and since then I have greatly improved on the physical, mental, and emotional level. Then I have also been practicing EE.
And of course working on myself, observing myself and the consecuences of my acts in me and others, trying to remain conscious and present.

This allows me to be more balanced and able to navigate with a clearer mind the spiritual affairs, our reality and to gather and apply knowledge in my life.
 

low

The Force is Strong With This One
Ana said:
low said:
Ana said:
low said:
hi Ana,

What I meant was , what if focusing on your physical disabilities constantly ( as one might do in order to walk on a tightrope ) was the only way of alleviating them so they improved , or no longer became a threat / inability to do other essential activities such as self remembering or eating , walking etc


thanks

low
What do you mean by "physical disabilities"? Maybe you can give an example, is it something happening or that have happened to you?
Maybe centering the conversation on a more practical level can help here.
What is you experience of suffering , mental , emotional, spiritual or physical ?

low
I've suffered in all of them in different intensities, diet was the main reason and I have been taking care of, and since then I have greatly improved on the physical, mental, and emotional level. Then I have also been practicing EE.
And of course working on myself, observing myself and the consecuences of my acts in me and others, trying to remain conscious and present.

This allows me to be more balanced and able to navigate with a clearer mind the spiritual affairs, our reality and to gather and apply knowledge in my life.
why was diet the main reason / how did that relate to mental etc ?

low
 

ana

The Living Force
low said:
why was diet the main reason / how did that relate to mental etc ?

low
The gluten and sugars I was eating and the lack of proper fat and meats were severely affecting my thinking processes, I had problems to focus, brain fog, anxiety, panic attacks and constant emotional turmoils besides the physical symptoms...

If you take some time to go through the Diet and Health section of the forum you will se how diet directly affects our mental and emotional health.

You can start by this thread which contains lots of usefull info:

http://cassiopaea.org/forum/index.php/topic,22916.0.html
 

low

The Force is Strong With This One
Ana said:
low said:
why was diet the main reason / how did that relate to mental etc ?

low
The gluten and sugars I was eating and the lack of proper fat and meats were severely affecting my thinking processes, I had problems to focus, brain fog, anxiety, panic attacks and constant emotional turmoils besides the physical symptoms...

If you take some time to go through the Diet and Health section of the forum you will se how diet directly affects our mental and emotional health.

You can start by this thread which contains lots of usefull info:

http://cassiopaea.org/forum/index.php/topic,22916.0.html
I take it you has some recognized health condition , before you did this diet ?

low
 

Alada

The Living Force
low said:
Ana said:
low said:
why was diet the main reason / how did that relate to mental etc ?

low
The gluten and sugars I was eating and the lack of proper fat and meats were severely affecting my thinking processes, I had problems to focus, brain fog, anxiety, panic attacks and constant emotional turmoils besides the physical symptoms...

If you take some time to go through the Diet and Health section of the forum you will se how diet directly affects our mental and emotional health.

You can start by this thread which contains lots of usefull info:

http://cassiopaea.org/forum/index.php/topic,22916.0.html
I take it you has some recognized health condition , before you did this diet ?

low
Hi low, I think as Ana recommended if you take while to read through some of the information available in the Diet and Health Section it will help your understanding. What many people here have found over the course of several years, experimenting with, and verifying for themselves the information contained there, is that the kind of symptoms Ana mentions are common to the large majority of us and have been either greatly alleviated or removed altogether as problems by gradually changing to an optimum diet.

Think of it in terms of the old saying "you are what you eat", there is way more truth to that than I think any of us realized a few years back. Our bodies are basically just big chemistry sets, we can earn through study and application to gradually balance out some of the problems many of us find from eating the standard western diet. The foods we eat can alter not only our general health/energy levels, but also change our moods, ability to think clearly or to sleep and get proper rest for example. Those threads are well worth exploring.

Also as Ana recommended it would be good to hear from you in the Newbies Section, feel free to jump on in a post an introduction to yourself and how you found your way here. :)
 

low

The Force is Strong With This One
Alada said:
low said:
Ana said:
low said:
why was diet the main reason / how did that relate to mental etc ?

low
The gluten and sugars I was eating and the lack of proper fat and meats were severely affecting my thinking processes, I had problems to focus, brain fog, anxiety, panic attacks and constant emotional turmoils besides the physical symptoms...

If you take some time to go through the Diet and Health section of the forum you will se how diet directly affects our mental and emotional health.

You can start by this thread which contains lots of usefull info:

http://cassiopaea.org/forum/index.php/topic,22916.0.html
I take it you has some recognized health condition , before you did this diet ?

low
Hi low, I think as Ana recommended if you take while to read through some of the information available in the Diet and Health Section it will help your understanding. What many people here have found over the course of several years, experimenting with, and verifying for themselves the information contained there, is that the kind of symptoms Ana mentions are common to the large majority of us and have been either greatly alleviated or removed altogether as problems by gradually changing to an optimum diet.

Think of it in terms of the old saying "you are what you eat", there is way more truth to that than I think any of us realized a few years back. Our bodies are basically just big chemistry sets, we can earn through study and application to gradually balance out some of the problems many of us find from eating the standard western diet. The foods we eat can alter not only our general health/energy levels, but also change our moods, ability to think clearly or to sleep and get proper rest for example. Those threads are well worth exploring.

Also as Ana recommended it would be good to hear from you in the Newbies Section, feel free to jump on in a post an introduction to yourself and how you found your way here. :)
my ability 2 write is limited just now.

diet is useless 2 me, too many other unkowns that cant be accounted for through lack of current technology, pseudo skepticism , bureaucratic ethics and good ol bigotry.

bottom line is i am biomechanically disabed through an anomalY ( similar to EDS but far worse ) emotionally disabled through anosima and neurally disabled through some form of neuroapthy ,and been housebound now for 2 yrs and unable to meditate since 98.

low
 

Alana

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
low said:
my ability 2 write is limited just now.

diet is useless 2 me, too many other unkowns that cant be accounted for through lack of current technology, pseudo skepticism , bureaucratic ethics and good ol bigotry.

bottom line is i am biomechanically disabed through an anomalY ( similar to EDS but far worse ) emotionally disabled through anosima and neurally disabled through some form of neuroapthy ,and been housebound now for 2 yrs and unable to meditate since 98.

low
Hi low, and welcome.

When you say you suffer from a condition similar to EDS, are you talking about the Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome?
I also couldn't find anything on anosima, unless it is a typo and you meant anosmia?
 
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