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Zen self help / therapy?

Discussion in 'Strategies for Success' started by Mehmet, Jul 9, 2016.

  1. Mehmet

    Mehmet Member

    Hi everyone,

    Last night, before I signed up, I was scrolling through the forum, and at first, I just scrolled past a comment from someone who mentioned the principles of Zen teachings, but it is has been in my mind ever since... being in the moment, and not stuck in the future and the past (which I know I have a problem with).
    I'll keep looking for the member / post, but was wondering if anyone know which member / post it was?

    Basically I'm aware that I have a problem, I've tried twice before to commit suicide, and have a strange settled feeling for years now that I will do it in the end anyway. I've recently also lost interest in a lot of things I used to be very interested in, and lack passion for much that used to give me a thrill in life. Further am I also aware that I can't keep friends, and although I think I'm an OK person (caring about personal space / respect / animals / general health and so on), I seem to push people away... this keeps me from even trying to make new friends (real life and online), let alone giving a try anymore for partner. Recently read something spot-on that a person can't use a relationship to fill a gap / you can't expect someone else to make you happy if you yourself don't know what makes you happy... and so I am aware that it would be unfair to people / friends / boyfriend to be this filler.

    I do believe in (a) God, but after numerous bad experiences with churches, even youth / open minded churches, I have more and more doubts as to the church as institution... but I still do believe that there is a higher power... how He allows all this destruction and pain on earth I don't get, but that is another story.

    So... aware of the above, I'd like to give Zen a try...
  2. Unknown_111

    Unknown_111 Forum Buddy Staff Alumni SF Supporter

    Welcome to the forum. I'm glad you joined here as the group are from various parts of the world. We are not going to say start to pray as we here not to talk religion. Religion is a subject which is very personal to every user of this forum. I not religion is not helpful but trying to give a opinion in the middle of the road.

    I'm sorry if this post offends anyone and feel free to report me but trying to give a unbiased point of view. One of us find salvation in religion and if it prevents someone from doing the final committment then it has a role in meaning people realise that LIFE ITSELF IS IMPORTANT.

    I saddened by your story but you are important and I glad you reached out to us. We care that someone is hurting and can freely express their feelings without being judged. We will not judge but show compassion. You have joined a very supportive of people who understand when the chips are down, you have to dig deep and fight from within to find the inner spirit ( well that's how I would describe it) for your life.

    Ok, you mentioned two attempts in the past but is it a cumlination of events that caused to do this. If you can expand on your reasoning. If you don't want to discuss it then I respect your privacy.

    I want to help you to see the light and avoid a repercussion. We are here for you as the ones who understand your feelings are the ones who experienced or still experience the ideation of the final committment. We want to help you to see reason that there is a purpose in living but it's a long term struggle but will not be done by the wave of a magic wand but with support from learning of Zen and this forum.

    I hope this post helps you understand that there others in this world who suffer like you and you realise that you are not alone in your daily struggle. Keep posting here as its very important at this moment of your life and more imperative stay safe.!!!
  3. Mehmet

    Mehmet Member

    Hi again, thanks for the post and reply... no need to say sorry, I'm not offended by religious post, I fully understand that this is personal for each person, and that which works for one person may not be for someone else.
    The reason I was asking about Zen was that I am willing to give it a go... I'm aware it's a long process.
    Some time ago, I was traveling in the East, and had time to talk to a monk, and he mentioned something very similar... I asked him why one of the younger monks was walking in a zig-zag pattern in a temple, and the monk said that it was a way of coming back to one place and the present. I didn't fully understand at the time, but I think I do now.

    The previous two times happened at various ages, first around 14 / 15, I was bullied at school and called names, I knew I was different from the other boys... strange how kids can pick you out even before you yourself know you are different. Typical coming to terms with being gay thing, but now I'm fine with that. I just get really really angry with church people telling me that unless we / I change that God won't have me... the relationship I believe I have with God is good, well, as good as I guess it can be... there is still the problem that I can't believe that God can love me if I can't even stand myself... but that is not that relevant here.
    The second time was about 22 / 23... I've been living in the UK for a few years then after having been in a life skills clinic that helped me to quit my job, sell everything and leave my country and start fresh - I checked into the life skills clinic when a night doctor refused to give me anti depressants when I went because I felt suicidal that night. That helped a bit... but after a few years I felt lost again.

    I get the thing that we should let the past go, but I don't get the 'how to do that' part.
    Sorry there are a lot of I's in the above post, but its what is in my mind.

    Your comment as to Life itself is important.... I strangely understand this... and I understand that it is precious. An uncle who was quite close recently died, and before he passed away, one evening, a very strange feeling of understanding and awareness came into my mind, what my aunt and he must be going through... that they have each other, and that even though he is terribly ill, he is still clinging on, and they don't want to let go... it was very rough to be aware of this preciousness of life. Of the feeling of being aware of this anyway. But to me the question keeps coming, although I felt sad for my aunt because I know that she has lost a life partner and someone she loved and depended on, I can't really feel sadness, same as I couldn't really feel sadness when my father died when I was young. The only emotion I can recognise is selfishness really. And specifically because people cling to life and to the final moments with loved ones, it makes me doubt even more if there is something after this...

    The saddest part is that I don't need anything! I've got everything I can think of that I might need!
    I'm also critically aware that people fill their lives with buying stuff because they think they will be happier once they have the next thing... but even that has lost it's appeal, since it's superficialness seems similar to religion in some ways.
  4. Mehmet

    Mehmet Member

    (Ps. I see now this discussion is not in the correct forum section, please feel free to move it)
    Brian777 likes this.
  5. Unknown_111

    Unknown_111 Forum Buddy Staff Alumni SF Supporter

    Wow, you have gave up everything to restart. I hope the purpose of Zen helps you to find your inner soul and harmonises your life.

    The thing about your sexuality should not are any difference to the way you live your life. We live in a global-warming society and not in the dark ages. If people who cannot accept your sexuality and what you are , it's there loss and need to get a lessons in life skills and society acceptance.

    You have my condolsecences about your uncle's death. You no doubt miss him as well as feel the pain tat your Aunty's feels. Surely, if did do something your Aunty would suffer an extra loss as no doubt you are close to her like a son. I am no water trying to cause emotional attachment or blackmail.

    You seem very much a rational and intelligent person but I am merely looking from the outside inside ( if that's makes any sense) of the situation. I am trying my best to make you reason that the final committment is not the last resort. I hope from the bottom of my heart you find your enlightment on the pathway of Zen.

    I say this with compassion and no way trying make a joke out of your situation. You know now you among people who understand and willing to give up their tine to support you in you time of need.

    Please keep talking as its important as you will no doubt or hopefully feel better in some way to be talking someone across the world. Please feel free to contact me anytime and I hope you reconsider any plans you have.

    Keep posting as it does help everyone to know they are not the only ones to suffer in silence. Take care my friend.
  6. Mehmet

    Mehmet Member

    Hi again...
    :) I have yet to find the Zen post... still looking.

    Mmm, I wasn't that close to my uncle, I don't think I've ever been close to anyone. Yes, I (think anyway) love my family, if feeling sad when causing sadness is love, then I guess I do love them.

    Oh, I've started fresh a few times... I've moved countries a few times, last was about a year ago now. I find it easier to live in places where I don't understand the people around me, and as far away from my country of origin as possible, since I hate my country and the fact that that tiny part of my identity includes me being from there... the culture and language, its sad I think that someone can have such physical disgust in a place where he / she comes from... I often get ill when I have to go there.

    My sexuality is not an issue anymore... I am gay, and on paper, if someone has a problem with that, it is his / her problem... but in real life it can still be tricky to deal with it when someone doesn't accept it. Its not advertised, and I don't tell people, but I am honest when they do ask directly.
    My family is fine with it.

    Mmmm, I haven't got definite plans for the future, but it is something that pops up every now and then. Last week for example, I was standing on the platform at a train station, and a cargo train rushed past, and I was to be honest more shocked by how unsurprised I was that this is an ideal way to go, because (text removed, sorry I realised it discusses method - feel free to edit the sentence more).
    Anyway, I'm off, thanks, it is nice to be able to just type and tell.
    Thanks for being here, sorry you have to deal with problems of others.
    Talk again soon.
    Unknown_111 likes this.
  7. Unknown_111

    Unknown_111 Forum Buddy Staff Alumni SF Supporter

    I'm glad we talked as it does help but you now realise the purpose of this forum which is to give care and support to anyone in the world. It was my pleasure to talk to you and I hope we talk soon my friend.

    I wish you a safe and happy day in whatever you have planned my friend. Once again take care......!!!!
  8. RetroJoe

    RetroJoe Member

    Again, I understand that religion isn't something that we discuss in these forums, however, I would like to put forth a philosophical point of view that is a part of Buddhism. Something that I have learned is simply this: Learn from the past, plan for the future but LIVE in the present. This means that neither the past nor the present exist, only the present. We should be mindful of the present. Its like the old saying, "Live one day at a time". Anyway its much easier said than done but I keep trying everyday.
  9. Mehmet

    Mehmet Member

    Hi everyone, hi Joe, thanks for the comment and the thought.
    An interesting point you make about past and future not existing... I just finished 1984 by Orwell, and the concept of that is ringing in my ears.
    As you said, easier said than done...

    Have a good week all.
    RetroJoe likes this.
  10. IamTetsuo

    IamTetsuo Well-Known Member

    Hi Mehmet

    I recently read 1984 and found it to be one of the most powerful books I've ever read. I would highly recommend it to anyone but it's pretty heavy.

    With regards to getting more info about Zen, I remember that thread too, strange that you can't find it (maybe The Ministry of Truth are involved!). Have you managed to pursue it more since your post. I find ideas like Zen amazingly effective at reducing anxiety and if you are feeling drawn to them I'm sure you will get a great benefit from them too.

    Zen is an offshoot of Buddhism and so it's basic philosphy is one of non-attachment. As Zen developed in China it is said to be influenced by Taoism which emphasises living and being at ease in alignment with the nature of things. Hinduism also shares similar ideas and what these Eastern philosphies are wonderful for is getting your mind to shut the hell up and let you enjoy the simplicity of just being.

    Below is a link to a talk by Alan Watts on Zen, who I absolutely love (he has lots of talks on Youtube and they're are very helpful for developing a less insane view of the world!). Also Eckhart Tolle is very good and his book 'The Power of Now" is very simple and effective. Personally I think that a regular meditation practice is also pretty essential to implement these ideas into your daily life.

    Mehmet likes this.
  11. Mehmet

    Mehmet Member

    Hi, thank you very much for the reply, the video link, and I had to smile at the Ministry of Truth comment... yep, not sure, but I am actually quite sure, now that I see your username, that it might have been a comment originally from you... anyway, thanks.

    I think it was on Facebook or somewhere where I recently saw a short video (why does AJ+ or something come to mind) about a Japanese guy who owned something like 3 pairs of trousers, and 4 shirts, and in total he owns 150 objects... it was a fascinating video and concept, he commented on how we surround ourselves with unnecessary things, and this connected in my mind to how the commercial world works, and brought me to the bombardment of the media that everyone is happy, and you can also be happy (if you buy our product)...
    Your comment on detachment connects then with this, but it also makes my mind now wonder in the direction of how detached we / one / you can be from people, how much should you allow yourself to be detached from things / people etc - because being detached from people then brings me back to thoughts around the topic of 'what the use is of being here', and that is where I know I shouldn't go, or don't want to go.
    I'll listen to the video link later this evening, and maybe gain some answers. And yes, meditation... it is hard work, isn't it?

    Thanks again, and wishing you all a pleasant weekend.
  12. IamTetsuo

    IamTetsuo Well-Known Member

    Hey, you're very welcome. I really hope you'll enjoy the video.

    That sounds like an interesting story about the Japanese guy. It is definitely an easy trap to fall into in our consumer societies that you keep needing to accquire more possessions. The nature of a capitalist-consuemer society is that it creates a feeling of lack in the people so they'll keep on buying whatever it is that they are selling. I have gotten rid of at least 50% of what I own in the last year or so and definitely feel much better for it. I also make a lot more effort to keep everything clean and tidy and again feel so much better.

    It's a good point you bring up about the worry that becoming too detached will lead to you giving up on life but I would suggest that you're (our!) desire to give up is caused by the total opposite - it is caused by our being too attached. We can't take the way things are, we are too attached to the idea of them being some other way. Don't worry, when you give up mind-made attachments you will not become an apathetic zombie, you'll uncover natural a state that is much more positive (whilst still being much more detached!).

    Meditation is not easy and it's not hard, unless you want it to be and then it's either or both! What it helps you to do is to separate yourself from your mind and 'easy' and 'hard' are things of the mind (if you understand what I'm getting at). It can be done in different ways and has lots of benefits. What I love about it is the ability to find peace and contentment in the simple act of sitting down and being still and quiet - just to be is enough.
  13. Mehmet

    Mehmet Member

    Hi again, thanks for the reply...
    I think you've touched in probably one of the main things there... we are told that 'just to be' isn't enough... we always need to be happier, thinner, more handsome, somewhere...
    Thoughts for the day :)
    RetroJoe likes this.
  14. Winslow

    Winslow Antiquitie's Friend SF Supporter

    Maybe I can answer. Because I have a thread "Zen-Buddhism To Control Emotions." It's in the section Positive Feelings and Motivational Messages. I don't know whether that's the specific post you referred to or not, but at least it concerns Zen.
    Mehmet likes this.
  15. Mehmet

    Mehmet Member

    Hi, thanks! Yes, that is the post... not sure why this site's search function doesn't bring this up... I've searched numerous times, AND overlooked it...

    '... the aim of Buddhism is not happiness but instead serenity ...' This is the sentence that caught my attention...
    Thanks all for your replies and help.