Author Topic: I don't know what to do anymore  (Read 5485 times)

Matthew

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I don't know what to do anymore
« on: June 28, 2008, 11:50:20 PM »
Hey,

I'm a 26 year old male from Canada.  I had a very safe, suburbanite, middle class upbringing.  I went on to complete a degree in Psychology and have since spent most my time working in the various human services fields.

I was a very normal, happy, social kid up until about grade seven.  I had matured emotionally and intellectually a bit ahead of my peers and this created a divide.  I became very reclusive, overweight, and indulgent in a haze that lasted for many years.  While in University I finally lost the weight and started a new phase of my life.

When I was about 13 I would buy books on psychology and I ended up getting one that included information on altered states of consciousness that fascinated me.  I got more into altered states and that eventually lead me to Buddhism since many experiences people reported from altered states resonated well with the Buddhist experience.  Even Papaji mentioned that some of the people he met who had tried psychedelics spoke statements that were indicative of glimpses into the things the scriptures speak of. 

Thankfully I didn't get stuck in Buddhism.  Too much tradition and people imitating something without having the deep understanding for themselves.

Eventually and thankfully I found my way to David Bohm and Krishnamurti, and then finally Ramana Maharshi, Nisargadatta Maharaj, and Papaji.  Since finding those people nothing has resonated with me more.

My practices or my interests have never been that serious.  I live a deeply conflicted life with a gemini personality that often destroys whatever I build up.  I have so many interests and so many things on the go but none of them I go far enough into.  Something always pulls me back to this whole ayurvedic pursuit.  It's always in my heart and in the back of my mind.  Usually I am pursuing more worldly things though.

I'm at a point where I find it extraordinarily difficult to relate to other people.  My interests and theirs tend to be opposite.  I come across as a very serious, non-fun kind of person to them, but when I fake being a fun person I never feel right and it never goes that well anyway.  No one I meet ever understands me or listens or attends to me the way I do them.  I am social and go to many events by myself but so rare do I meet anyone and usually after speaking with them for a few minutes I find nothing in them that resonates with me and vice versa.  I've been in a few relationships lately that ended painfully because I chose a partner who seems to be very caring and unselfish but in the end mind dominates so much and I am not providing them with the kind of experience they want so it doesn't work out.  But I cannot fake it, I cannot put in that effort to create a certain kind of experience for them apart from what comes naturally for me to do. 

I just don't know what to do anymore.  I do want more friends, and I do want a partner again.  Then there is part of me that is tempted to leave everything worldly behind and pursue only this one simple truth (the teachings of Ramana Maharshi). 

My professional experiences have been very unpleasant.  Most the places I have worked at are considered good, fun places to work at by most people, but for me it's horrible.  The lack of intelligence, the lack of a deep concern for the well being of all of us, the inattention that is promoted and fostered, the conditioning and brainwashing to certain beliefs that are held, etc.

I go to some of the Buddhist groups locally, and there they speak the exact opposite of Advaita.  They talk about the constant effort you have to put in because it's easy to bad things but hard to do good ones.  They talk about how you have to mediate to reach the highest level of meditation.  Even though the monk has been meditating for 40 years he wants more time to do all this.  He wants us all to accept slow, gradual progress in time to move towards a goal that apparently none of the Buddhists really reach or maybe 1 every 1000 years.  They talk about being able to fly, read other people's minds, and walk on water as benchmarks of being enlightened... I just want to understand myself and be happy.

What to do, what to do.  I'm just frustrated and depressed.  Thank you for taking the time to listen -- I am hoping here is a place with people who can understand and relate.  Feel free to make any comments; I'd be happy to hear anything.

nonduel

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2008, 12:38:59 AM »
Dear Matthew,

Sri Ramana Maharshi would ask you...Who is this I?

On the web site: http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/Allpub.html  you will find many PDF free E-books.

You can read a few of them like: Self-Enquiry;   Who Am I?;   The Essence of Ribhu Gita

They will help you find the answer to this question...and many others,  and find peace.
Oh Arunachala, blazing fire of Jnana, in my heart I pray and think of Thee from afar, root out the ego, merging me in the Self.

Subramanian.R

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2008, 11:29:57 AM »
Dear Matthew,  I will say that you ended up well with Ramana Maharshi.
Read His books.  To know what is happening at a distant place or to
know other people's mind or to know past, present and future, is
not enlightenment.  Bhagavan says that to stay in the Self is the
real wisdom-insight and not these three things.  Eat simple vegetarian food.  Being in West, do not resort to drugs for enlightenment.  These
will not confer enlightenment.  Be friendly and compassionate to poeple
but do not interfere with their lives or any other worldly matters.  If
you are distraught, ask for Bhagavan Ramana's Grace.  It is flowing
perennially but you should 'seek' it.   Bhagavan's cinema-screen
example is excellent.  Be a screen, a witness.  When the show is
over, only screen remains as a silvery brilliance and you will hear
a low monotone of Ramana which will be with you always.  There
is no need to go away from society or embrace ascetism or shirk your
regular work.  These things can go hand in hand with self-enquiry.
Ultimately the screen will remain for ever and you in the Self.
Arunachala Siva.   

Matthew

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2008, 10:15:32 PM »
I have read several books containing Ramana's words.

I've read many more books by Krishnamurti, Papaji, Bohm, and Nisargadatta.

The part I'm having the hardest time with is regarding my worldly pursuits and desire for friendship and relationships.

Can I have it all, can I pursue both a worldly life and understanding the self at the same time, or does the worldly have to be put aside until one is steady enough in their awareness of the ever present self?

My desire for the worldly life is very strong so suppressing it would not be easy or perhaps even directly possible.


Shivani

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2008, 12:17:45 AM »
Dear Mathew

With people like Subramanian and nonduel and others i am whole heap immature to comment.But still i am making an effort.

You are frustrated want to leave everything becoz you are not getting what you want. The root cause is the desire to have friends, partner etc which you think would give you happiness/pleasure. But is it true??

The purpose of life for all beings is to achieve continuous permanent happines unadulterated or unmixed with sorrows and sufferings. Since, you have already experienced so much of unhappiness in worldly life hence it proves that having friend, partner, or money is not the source of permanent happiness/satisfaction.

For small small happiness/ pleasures people work so hard but where lies the permanent happiness/pleasure, we dont want to put at all any efforts.
Dont leave World for Lord just becoz everybody or scripture  says so. Just THINK!

Its all a matter of choice. Its all in MIND. the happiness, the sorrows, these all are mind's play.

I would like to illustrate a small story here:

There were two friends namely Max & Sam of the same village. They both decided to go to foreign and earn some good money. Both went and started earning money there. Initially they communicated with their parents and gave them their address and all. After some time, the parents of both the boys got no communication from them and were quite worried. somebody from their village was going to the very same country and hence they asked him to visit their son also. The man went to that country and tried searching for the boys. After some effort he met Max who had become quite wealthy and was very happy. He enquired about Sam to which Max told that he died after 6 months only.

After reaching back to his village, he got confused between Max and Sam. He could not remember who had died and who is alive. Hence, he told to Sam's parents that your son is doing very well, he is happy and very wealthy. The parents got very happy and started celebrating. On the other hand, he told to Max parents that your son has demised and the parents were devastated.

In reality, the Max was alive and Sam was dead. But see the reaction of the parents!!

So buddy its all in MIND. The sorrows and the happiness...

Dont struggle hard to avoid sorrows and to get happiness. The sorrows are dirty/bumpy roads and the happiness are good roads of life. Tighten your hold on the steering which is Mind and put the gear of Lord's name. You will eventually reach to your Destination.

OM!


Subramanian.R

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2008, 11:35:42 AM »
Dear Matthew, adding to what Shivani has already covered,
Bhagavan has said going to work, for minimum worldly comforts, like  some money for simple vegetarian food, a shelter, clothes do not
come in the way of your pursuing Wisdom.  One need not go to
a lonely island or jungle to pursue Wisdom.  One can live in this
world among people and can still do that.  One should not direct noisy
his mind in unncessary worldly matters or in other people's jobs.
One can live anywhere, if he could control his mind.  Similarly,
one need not separately allot time for meditation.  Meditation can
be the underlying montone in your work-situation.  Arunachala Siva.   

nonduel

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2008, 05:19:14 PM »
I have read several books containing Ramana's words.

I've read many more books by Krishnamurti, Papaji, Bohm, and Nisargadatta.

The part I'm having the hardest time with is regarding my worldly pursuits and desire for friendship and relationships.

Can I have it all, can I pursue both a worldly life and understanding the self at the same time, or does the worldly have to be put aside until one is steady enough in their awareness of the ever present self?

My desire for the worldly life is very strong so suppressing it would not be easy or perhaps even directly possible.



There are three states that we can relate to. What we call the day-to-day waking state, the dream state and the deep dreamless state. Through all these states what is permanent is awareness. Some could argue that in the dreamless sleep, one in "unconscious", in a coma state. Then how can we explain that on "awakening" one knows if he slept well?  If there were no awareness, sleep would be a "blank". There wouldn't even be a consciousness of lost of "time", not even a remembrance of having slept.

Thus awareness is constant, and there is never an instant were it IS not.

Where are all your questions, difficulties, needs, depressing moments...etc. Matthew in the dreamless sleep state ?

When you dream there are peoples, friends, buildings, mountains, pleasants events and unpleasants ones. It is so real that some have terrible nightmares, crying out in the night. Where does all the peoples, buildings etc. go when "you" wake up???  Where is the body you had in the dream ?

It all happened in the mind and you realized it's not real as soon as you wake up.

Consequently, "you" cannot be the "body" in the dream. You cannot be the physical body because it is absent in dreamless sleep like the dream body once awakened. If it cannot always be there through all the three states, it cannot be reality.

There is only ONE REALITY. There can never be two reality. It cannot be pure white AND pure black at the same time!

Awareness IS in all three states and the only reality because the two others aren't. Thus the waking state is as unreal as the dream state, and disappear in the dreamless sleep state.

You are aware that you exist, of your existence. There is never a moment when you are not. That is the only Reality.

This illusion of birth and death continues as long as you believe it is real. This is what Sri Ramana called ignorance, the veil. The belief that we are the body.

Self-Realization, Enlightement is awakening from this dream.

Your desire for wordly life that are so strong are from the ego. The problem Matthew is that you believe it is real, and you believe that it IS YOU.   
Oh Arunachala, blazing fire of Jnana, in my heart I pray and think of Thee from afar, root out the ego, merging me in the Self.

davemahar

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #7 on: July 06, 2008, 11:11:01 AM »
Hey Matthew, hang in there Buddy. Don't despair you are on the right track. I was in a somewhat similar place in the 60's. In my case it was the fear of death that seized me and put me into that awful place. I came up with a way to push this fear aside so that I could function. Read about a guy named Eckhart Tolle who went thru your experience and came out of it fully realized and filled with joy. Sane thing happened to me. Fortunately a guy I encountered handed me a copy of "Who Am I" which was like looking at a map of where I had been. It seems the only way to heaven on earth is thru the gates of hell. Ramana went that way, Budha went that way and it seems J. C. also. 40 days in the desert, a form of hell for him. Zen gives a person a riddle that drives them to a state of despair that will put them in that place where heaven and hell meet. It has been almost 40 years since my experience and I checked out everything related to the subject and I always return to Maharshi as the purest way. Even checked out a guy named Spinoza who stated that god was every where and was the universal substate of the world. Maharshi recommended staying fully involved with the world and he was right as the world for me is endleesly fascinating and joyful. I say read "Who Am I" then st down and realize that you are not your mind, you are the I of the I and I think that will work.
By the way my name is Dave Mahar and it is coincedence that the name is similar to Maharshi.
I just thought of another interesting person. A Lady by the name of Byron Katie. Check out her and Eckhart Tolle, they both have websites and both are charging substancial fees to come and kisten to their lectures. I can't imagine what they have to say as from my point of view "The Tao that can be described is not the Tao".

Subramanian.R

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #8 on: July 06, 2008, 12:15:47 PM »
Dear Matthew, As Davemahar said, fear of death is the primordial fear,
from where every other fear sprouts.  Here again, fear of death only is fear and not death by itself.  Fear of death is fear of losing something known to you, the body, the senses, the mind et al.  Please read 'Who am I?' and
that is more than sufficient.  You can read Zen Buddhism, Bible and whole
range of western philosophy -- from Francis Bacon to Kant, Spinoza, Shophenheur, Nietszhe and Bertrand Russel.  In my case, at least, all these readings only confused me.  A little bit of Sankara and then Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi will do.  Good luck. 

Arunachala Siva.       

Akira

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2010, 01:45:26 PM »
Buddhism is a jungle. Once you step in, it is difficult to find which way you should go.
Unless you are born in Buddhism tradition, I do not recommend you to go into Buddhism.
Many Buddhism schools, which are active in America and Europe,
teach strange teachings which have nothing to do with orthodox Buddhism.

I think it is good to stick to Bhagavan Ramana only.
His teaching is simple and clear.
You have little chance to go astray.

And forget Poonja(Papaji) and Nisargadatta (in my opinion).
I see a problem here.  
A man who compiled a famous book on Bhagavan Ramana also wrote on Poonja and Nisargadatta.
So some people could automatically accept Poonja and Nisargadatta as good gurus as Bhagavan Ramana.
You have to think carefully with your common sense
and judge whether they speak truth or they just try to spin your head with nonsense.

This is only my opinion.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2010, 02:01:48 PM by Akira »

amiatall

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2010, 07:48:12 PM »
You are blessed, for when one is griped by Ramana, believe me, one won't fall too far even with effort.. Ramana always brings you back ;D
There will be times of frustration, there will be times of despair. Nevermind what comes, instead inquire to whom.

Live in the world but be not of it (@) J.C.

Actually living in the world does not contradict being. For it is not separate.

Subramanian.R

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2010, 09:51:48 AM »
Nisarga Datta Maharaj and Papaji must have said the same thing as Bhagavan Ramana.
But their teachings confuse me.  I am more at home with Bhagavan Ramana.  Perhaps,
the tuning up, differs from person to person.  The Guru, if you lead your life as the
way he had said or shown, never forsakes the devotee/disciple.  It like a fawn caught
in the tiger's jaw.

Arunachala Siva.

ramanaduli

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2010, 12:44:13 AM »
At least you have the capacity to understand that you do not know what to do anymore.
Moreover you are not the one in this vast world who do not know what to do anymore. Do not afraid, there are many more people who do not know what to do anymore. It is a good sign and the good beginning. When Arjuna realised that he could not fight from his whole heart, he had Darshan of Krishna and cleared his doubt. In the same way, ask Bhagavan what to do now. Just He will smile. You would be still. That is all. Every thing will be over.


Ramanaduli

Subramanian.R

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #13 on: April 03, 2010, 08:54:44 AM »
If someone goes to Bhagavan Ramana and says:  I do not know
what to do,"  He would ask:  "Find out this "I", which is telling,
"I do not know what to do."  To say that one knows and to say
that one does not know, both are the ego-games.  That is why
Bhagavan Ramana said in Upadesa Saram, Verse 27:

That is True Knowledge which transcends
Both knowledge and ignorance
For in Pure Knowledge
Is no object to be known.

Once Major Chadwick, who had by then spent 2 years in Sri
Ramanasramam, started feeling empty without any progress
in sadhana.  He felt that his vasanas were to high to eradicate
and almost decided to go back to his country.  He was in despair.
One afternoon, in the hot T'malai weather, while he was moving
the punkah for Bhagavan, he said:  Bhagavan! I do not know I
can further progress.  I am not happy with my progress.  I thought
I would return to my country.....  Bhagavan did not reply.  He
was continuing to read some newspaper or letter.  Suddenly,
He turned towards Major Chadwick and said:  "You are telling
I am not happy.  You are telling I do not know how I can further
progress.  You are telling I want to go back to my country....
Tell me who is saying all these?  Who is this "I" which has come
a number of times, in your crying?  Please find out."

Major Chadwick returned to his cottage.  He had immense peace.
For two or three days, he did not even go to the Hall.  On the third
day, while inside the bath-tub, he had 'understood'.  He came
running with his towel and told Bhagavan:  "IS IT SO SIMPLE?"
Bhagavan said:  "IT IS.."

Whenever the sadhak finds no progress and keep on telling I am
not improving, I am not doing any effort to progress, if he intensely
prays to his Guru, the grace which is even otherwise there, will
start flowing more and more.

Karunaiyal ennai anda nee enakku....(Sri Arunachala Padigam,
Verse 1)

Arunachala Siva.

matthias

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Re: I don't know what to do anymore
« Reply #14 on: April 03, 2010, 11:03:51 PM »
dear matthew

our names are similar..my name is matthias thats the same in german like matthew in english..and Iam 23...

first I like to say that questions like this are very welcome in forums like this, you know why? because some part in us likes to teach, and show what sort of "understanding" and even "realisation" we have, and hte best place to do this is under such a theme......Iam not different..so what I say is maybe totally stupid....

but I try to be honest with you ok.. (I know what I will write may not make all people of htis forum happy, but anyway...)


first I would say that you should not judge buddhism in such a way, it has a strong non-dual teaching at the core...so maybe you karma is just different and you met the wrong teachers? I practice vajrayana buddhism and my teachers where all fountains of love and nurturing presence...they still carry me today even If I met them just for one time...for some hours you know..the blessing is still with me.

and why you do not think about a psychotherapy, I make one myself...its not forbidden for "spiritual" people....you see it hightens awereness...and thats what it is all about in the spiritual life or? you see freud was austrian (Iam too) and I understand why we in the west have something like psychotherapy...why it stepped into the realm of time here in the west? because we need it..and its a good thing. I dont say its for all people, but it is a good thing really especially for our generation...I feel like this is true for me..I may be wrong, but as I said I want to be honest with you....

the questions you raise are qustions for a therapist not for a yogi...a yogi can also solve your problem of course, but maybe a therpasist would do it in a better way, or lets say in a more "western" way...

I make a gestlatherapy and my therapist is budhdist too, and I found books of hte maharshi and paul brunton in his library, its wonderfull he helps me solve my worldy problems and sometimes we may touch also spiritual feelings during the therapy...he is not a spiritual teacher for me, of course, but you see sometimes there is a sort of touching point where meditaiton and therapy meet...

to solve your worldy problems try out a therapy, it changed my life...faster and deeper then my meditation practice...Iam more happy, I have less fear of contact to others etc...all the worldy stuff you know...

to solve your spiritual problems please go to the maharshi, he can solve everything...

I know that in the end the maharshi will also solve all the worldy problems, I mean he will solve all problems, but for hte meantime, for your own happiness think about what I wrote

if you are interessted here is a wiki-link:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gestalt_therapy

be guarded and have a safe journey
matthias

PS: matthias//matthew means "gift of god"...nice to know huh?