Monday, September 19, 2011

Experimenting with Drugs: effects on psychological stability

I guess the thing to consider while having drugs is that it might take your body into a completely different state. This state might be completely outside any normal experience. If any understanding has to be gained from this, this experience would need to be integrated into your existing knowledge based on your exploration. If this state is far far beyond what you've explored, its like a 5yr old child getting a glimpse of what it would feel like when its 45yrs old, just for an hour or so. How would it be able to integrate this experience once its back into its child mind?!. General an outlier experience is initially disturbing until it gets integrated with your understanding. If a lot of far away outliers are introduced in a short time, then it will put all your energies on it until you figure out how this fits into your definition of self. For example, the vipassana retreat created strong outliers which I kept working on for 6-7months. Now almost all of it is integrated and my perspective is at the next level on everything. So I have stabilized again. So in brief, a unique novel experience will trigger intense questioning and pull your energies towards understanding and integrating the experience. This journey is very interesting but heavily preoccupying, so external pressures will create problems. A lot of things are expected out of you in daily life. Fulfilling social expectations can take an entire lifetime out of you, and still you would never be completely satisfied.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Actual events and the Memory of events

I look forward and eagerly anticipate certain events. Usually the emotion is a mixture of anticipation, tension and some fear. When the actual event occurs, the feelings are mixed again. Its excitement, nervousness, some pressure etc. And with this the event come to an end.

But depending upon the significance I attach to that event, after the event is over, I rerun all that happened in my mental imagination space. Though the actual experience was pretty mixed and not anything substantial, this subsequent fantasizing add this new dream layer and after some days, the memory gives me much more pleasure than the actual event. Its like the best parts are gleaned from the actual event and stored. The bad parts are somehow pushed to the background. The real experience seems to pass through some kind of filter and the memory gets encoded according to that filter.

My current perspective too significantly changes the feelings and thoughts invoked while reliving past moments. When I'm on a dopamine high through some intoxicant say, everything seems excellent. Sometimes while watching a movie in the theater, it would seem incredibly boring. But later, if I happen to see that the reviews for the movie are excellent and reading about all the different layers of meaning to all that happened in the movie, the memory of the entire movie is updated.

The reverse of this can happen too. I may go through a very nice experience and later everything I read invalidates it and claims its harmful, the memory of that experience gets passed through this new filter.

When I'm with other people, their perspectives influence my mental state a lot, so I cannot truly enjoy anything unless the other people are having the exact same intents(very rare). So, more than the actual event, the memory of events is so much more appealing because I can pass it through whatever filter I want and store only the best parts.

This further strengthens that "Perspective(Maya) is a game of reality" and that "Almost all of reality(that which matters to you) is controlled by perspective". So its almost like esp. during traveling, there are no substantial positive unadulterated experiences except when I have intoxicants.

The few experiences where the experience exceeded my expectation would be skydiving. It was the only thing that was more intense than I had imagined it to be.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Things simply are as they are - Choiceless awareness on 'what is'

I have been reading about this 'What Is' concept for so long. I had a epiphany about this recently.
"There is no good or bad. Instead stay with the truth of things. Things simply are the way they are. Focus on 'What is' and give your awareness to everything. Everything is in an eternal dance. There is no time."

In the macro picture, my feelings are spread in time and change from moment to moment. There are 6 billion other human beings going through some internal state or the other. It could range from extreme pleasure, satisfaction, disgust, hate, terror and its all happening simultaneously every moment. Now hate, pleasure, terror, love are all concepts which are simplifications created by society and culture. Considering the complexity of each individual, I think each person would be gratified and terrified by very unique methods and ways. The question would be, do these feelings even matter, or do they matter only because I am attached to them? It is possible to live entire lives chasing them, but none of them last. Who am I is the next question? If I am not the feelings, why should I be so attached to them. What if I detach myself from them? What would remain from that would be great peace.

Sensory clarity - Seeing is seeing, hearing is hearing, smell is smell, touch is touch, mental concepts are mental concepts, feelings are feelings.
Equanimity - continuous neutral attention w/o judgement
Anything that you can observe is not you.

Qualities of a diamond mapped to experience

The ideal +ve experience is where the mind is like an infinitely large diamond that is clear, does not hold anything but yet, reflects/refr...