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Everything posted by Aetherous

  1. What happens to suicides?

    I wonder if it's against forum rules to encourage suicidal people to commit suicide? @dawei A young woman was convicted for doing this very thing in the US.
  2. What happens to suicides?

    It sounds like you're quite serious, in which case it's very important that we recommend you speak to a professional right away. Here's the national suicide hotline for the US (if you live there): 1-800-273-8255. Please call them and talk it out with them, and hopefully they will be able to help you. As for what you judged the quality of your life based on a standard of looking at the external appearances of everyone else. Others have friends, relationships, success, etc, and you don't. The truth is, those other people have cultivated appearances of success, but they deal with the same things in life that you do. There's really not much difference in how valuable they are, in a true sense, versus how valuable you are. It's not that you lack value if you don't have a relationship, but someone in one is valuable. Valuable to whom? What's valuable to you? This is your life. Who cares about the appearance of success? You spoke of desires being whittled down. Sometimes certain spiritual teachings will discourage desire, insisting that it's bad, and as such those teachings can lead us to misunderstand the point. Perhaps to some extent that's happened here. It should not be encouraged that we lose our enthusiasm and zest for life. You mentioned things that you would've liked to accomplish...cultivate those more! Pay attention to what you like and want, and get those things! Enjoy the simple things in life, enjoy the steps it takes toward achieving goals, and finally, enjoy the rewarding feeling of achieving one little goal at a time. Start out small, trying to achieve one thing toward what you ultimately like and want for yourself. Anyway... Your main question here was what happens after a suicide. My spiritual teachers caution that what happens to those souls is so horrible that it can't even be mentioned. Suicide is considered by them to be the number one mistake a person can make in life, with horrendous consequences. It's apparently something that even in the afterlife, there's no coming back from. Eternally screwed. As for myself, being a spiritual student who is still unaware of the truth about what happens in the afterlife, I don't know what exactly occurs. But do consider that your conditions could be unceasingly worse off if you make that choice, and do call the number to get some real help. If you already have a plan to do it, contact the police right away and tell them that you have a plan and that you want help to prevent yourself from doing it. Best of luck.
  3. Daoist Canon goldmine This site contains the Ming Daoist Canon / Zhengtong Daozang (as well as other collections of books like the Siku Quanshu), I think the entire thing in both woodblock photocopies as well as digitized text. Just do a search in Chinese characters for a text you want to see. Sorry if someone has shared this before.
  4. Spiritual teachers are held to a higher standard (they must be), and really any teachers in the marketplace will get reviewed and receive criticism. It's good, if the teacher is also a forum member, to stay within the bounds of how forum members treat each other. On the other hand, it would be wrong for the forum to permit teachers to advertise their products here, but not let other forum members review them due to that person being a member. So - that's all a tightrope walk between following forum rules, respecting others, yet also upholding the truth and speaking honestly about the persona or material. It's important that the reviewing and criticism happens. We beginners and seekers should look for teachers of the highest nobility, so as to have a better example to follow, and not get trapped along the way. Often, as beginners and seekers, we don't even understand what a noble person looks or behaves like, and have all sorts of false ideas due to our lack of life experience; so it can be good to read the reviews of others and see what people are thinking. Maybe they're wrong, too, but at least we gain from their life experience and can think more clearly as a result. Also, are the teachers being criticized (not just here, but any time it happens) really all that bad? There are much worse things a spiritual teacher can do...which we know from the various destructive cults, and guru phenomena. Some who put themselves up as gurus really just have problems that they take out on unaware students through various forms of abuse. It can truly be bad, with suicides, rape, etc. So there are varying degrees of being imperfect. It's good to promote a culture at this forum which is pro-individualism (considering teachers as advisers, thinking rationally for oneself), and anti-mindless follower (for instance, not being abused and writing it off as crazy wisdom). Criticism of teachers helps foster that healthier mindset. I don't think any teacher is perfect, since we're all human beings. Sometimes the more power one has (in terms of being admired and respected by the masses, or just having lots of followers), the more temptation there is to abuse that power in private. "Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power." - Abraham Lincoln So, seeing as how we're all imperfect...I think it's okay that some of us teach. It just means we'll be held to a higher standard when teaching. Someone once told me, when you are the teacher, people will attack you to try and test you, similar to little pups nipping at the alpha dog. That's just the way it is for those who teach. It's good for more material to be out there. We live in the information age, where there is so much info that it's actually a hindrance to us...but in terms of various practices, philosophies, and methods, I think it's important for future generations that we document them thoroughly, so that they won't be lost to time. It's up to us to preserve the lineages of today, if we are part of them. For oral traditions, that means teaching others and gaining a few good students who will pass it down to a few good students each, etc. So to summarize my rambling post: we're all imperfect. If we have something to teach, we should, despite our imperfections (although the person who stops trying to be better has become a kind of monster). We will be criticized, and that has its good purposes, and is just something a teacher has to deal with. There are truly bad teachers out there who need to be outed, and whose followers need to be unbrainwashed. Forum member teachers can't be insulted, but should still be criticized in terms of their persona and their teachings.
  5. What's your current exercise routine?

    Now I've increased the pushups to 20 reps, increased the run/jog to 0.4 mile, and increased the flutterkicks to 12 four counts. Low numbers comparatively, but progress is all that matters. Feeling like I could take on the world when leaving the gym.
  6. In this thread you can share what you currently do for fitness. Not that anyone really cares about others' routines, but this could give an idea of what healthy activities people do here at the forum. ... As for myself, I care about general cardiovascular fitness, basic abilities, and having a halfway decent appearance. I go to the gym every day that I can, so probably 4 days per week on average...if I'm able to every day, I go every day. So here is my basic routine right now, after years of not being so healthy: 10 minutes elliptical (staying above 6 (on Planet Fitness machines, not sure what that means) with the level set at 7, the whole time), 10 minutes bike staying above 90 rpm with the level set at 9, 10 minutes walking at 3 mph and incline at 1, then jogging for 0.3 miles at 6 mph (increasing by 0.1 mile each week or two), and walking again. I get really bored with cardio in the gym so each time I tend to switch the machines like this. I also have calf and shin problems, and need to ramp up my activity super gradually. (Some days I skip the gym and just hike for at least an hour.) Then I'll do assisted pullups. Used to have the strength, and less body weight, to be able to do 10+ unassisted (when in Army basic training)...I'm working back up to that. I tend to put the assisted weights at 110, then do 5 pullups, rest 1 minute, then lower the weights one notch (so it's less assisted), until a bit before the point of failure...for me right now, I tend to do 3-4 sets of gradually decreasing the assisted weights. I think of it like warming up the movement, and then getting to strength building. Then do just one set of 17 fast pushups. I add 1 pushup per week to it, or as able without reaching failure. Used to be able to bust out 35 quick ones. I think training pushups at a fast speed helps with being able to do more of them...when in basic training, I noticed that doing a quick 35 enabled me to score 100% on the fitness test easily (where I had to do something like 60 within 2 minutes). The speed training helps. I still do Army style with perfect form, where the face is looking forward (not at the floor, but at the wall), the whole back is held in a straight line, the chest touches the ground when going down, and the elbows extend fully so that they'd be locked in the up position. After the pushups, I hold the plank position with arms extended for 30 seconds. Then ten 4-count flutterkicks. I used to be able to do 70 4-counts (counting like: 1,2,3,one, 1,2,3,two, 1,2,3,three; then eventually 1,2,3,seventy)...when I could do that, it really helped my running, and also my situps, for the fitness tests. Then 30 lb dumbbells full ROM bicep curls, 5 reps 3 sets. Not for fitness so much, but my triceps tend to be naturally very strong (I think due to being really good at skullcrushers during undergrad), so this balances me out and makes the arms look decent. the past I would do Stronglifts 5x5 routine. It was really good and enjoyable, although my knees can't do it these days.
  7. A study published in May 2019 has found that loving kindness meditation, in particular above other types of meditation such as mindfulness practice, slows the shortening of telomeres (which is thought to be associated with aging). Here's a somewhat more complete write up.
  8. Synchronicity and the flow of time

    That is due to the mind. It has heard something, which is now at the forefront of its consciousness due to being new info. So the mind picks up anything related to that subject that it can. It queues into things (which were already there, but not paid attention to). This is how the "law of attraction"'s just the mind picking up in the environment on what you pay attention to. Once I was playing around with LOA, and tried to manifest losing weight and being fit. All day I noticed joggers and bikers etc as I went around town. Did those people not exist prior to my manifesting? Did they not previously run until that day? Both highly doubtful concepts. But did my mind suddenly pay attention to them, because of what I was trying to "manifest"? I would say so! Of course, coincidences happen which can seem amazing, when we're not trying to do anything in particular...but it's still true that there's a connecting of the dots in our minds where there is actually not a real connection. If the mind wasn't involved at all, we wouldn't think it was an amazing coincidence anyway.
  9. I stumbled upon this Aramaic scholar's blog, and he does a great analysis of why the original New Testament wasn't the Peshitta (Aramaic) version as many claim. Even the comments section beneath the article has some interesting tidbits. This thread can be for the overarching purpose of understanding the Bible in its proper context.
  10. Synchronicity and the flow of time

    Synchronicity is connecting the dots, when a connection isn't really there. It's a disorder of the mind, in my view. It stops when you stop looking for it to happen.
  11. ADD or ADHD

    I totally agree. And I think the nicer the genetics, the more the emotions are going to get involved.
  12. I'm quite sure that you don't know this, and are simply being rude.
  13. Why are you saying he doesn't?
  14. ADD or ADHD

    Sorry if it seemed like my entire post was directed toward you; after the dots it was just a reply to the thread in general.
  15. ADD or ADHD

    It's so tempting for us men to want to do that in this type of situation. We are straightforward problem solvers...although in the case of women, they require a lot more mental flexibility than what most of us are used to dealing with, if we want to fix problems between us. ... It's tough... To be with someone who naturally treats people like doormats, while not allowing oneself to be treated like a doormat. How is such a thing possible? I guess if you enjoy spending time with them so much, and care about their flakiness toward you so little, maybe it could work. You'd have to be really chill about things naturally, and essentially not care. I would advise you not to be "forgiving" of them, or to try to be "patient". If you can pull such things off now, you'll grow to resent them for it later...these things are a form of repression. Why be in such a stressful relationship? Also, I agree with welkin, that ADD/ADHD people lack conscientiousness (at least in my experience with them). They are inconsiderate of others at their core, and take care of themselves above all else. So basically, I have no helpful advice for what to do about this. Good luck!
  16. Not Mistranslating the Bible

    To me, those are things unknowable one way or another (and to think rationally, of course they seem like tall tales). It doesn't change the spiritual teachings for me. Since I place precedence on his own teachings over anything else, it doesn't change my beliefs at all. I view those things in the same way I do the virgin birth - unknowable stories. "Mysteries". Although, the truth of the matter is murky - for instance, despite Jesus himself teaching that people need to do the will of the Father (to do good), much of the New Testament teaches being saved through faith in his dying for the atonement of sins (and that's a very core tenet of many denominations), and not being saved through our own works. The true teaching of Christianity is not so cut and dry.
  17. The ego and the heart in Chinese medicine

    Having an ego vs egolessness - I don't think these are concepts within TCM. Absence of an ego would probably be some sort of emotional disease, like "mania and withdrawal" (dian kuang), depending on how the person's symptoms presented. In Western psychiatry, I think it's considered "depersonalization disorder", a mental illness. A shen disturbance. So, we'd want to look at what's disturbing the shen...many things can do that. I don't think any TCM treatments would cause a person to lose their sense of self, such as getting rid of phlegm with shichangpu. Actually, doing such a thing might help a person's mind work more normally, and they could then develop a normally functioning ego. In that case, it would've been phlegm disturbing the shen, or "misting the mind", causing depersonalization. I think there might be a difference between Buddhist enlightenment, where a person is emotionally liberated from concepts of themselves... vs depersonalization disorder, which has got to be FAR more common. In terms of living in society unscathed, the liberated person should have no issue whatsoever, whereas the depersonalized person would experience their so-called egolessness as being highly traumatic.
  18. Taoist meditation techniques

    It may have been caused by your own mind. You are already prone to nightmares (and this technique was said to increase dreams in general). So perhaps this is just another nightmare. The technique doesn't sound demonic in itself, although maybe best to stick with methods that bring good results. I would think real demonic experiences would happen more during a half awake or awake state of mind...not within the dream itself. Although, it could.
  19. Not Mistranslating the Bible

    I've enjoyed watching his youtube videos. It brought me toward wanting to know more about Catholicism...although, researching further from other sources, I found myself not agreeing with many things about the sect.
  20. Not Mistranslating the Bible

    That reminds me...I would like to prioritize the Christian teachings somewhat like this: 1) Jesus' words where multiple accounts are the same (because it's most likely to increase accuracy when more than one source claims he said or did something). 2) Jesus' words otherwise. Also, if he references the Old Testament, understanding the reference in context of both OT and NT. 3) Disciples' writings who lived with Jesus (because they were actually there with him and can have a better idea of what he meant, especially since they were told the meanings of the parables). 4) Apostle Paul's writings (because the disciples came to agree with him). 5) Early church fathers' writings (because they were the close to the source). 6) Anything else. I think doing this can paint a really different picture of what Christianity could be like. In the modern church, I believe we have the following prioritization: 1) Apostle Paul's writings (so we have the teachings of someone who never met Jesus while he was alive in the highest priority). 2) Anything else (this includes modern day books and preachers, who make things up half of the time). 3) Disciple's writings. 4) Jesus' words. 5) Early church fathers (it seems the ECF are really only focused on in Catholicism, and probably only read by scholars and priests, not the general public).
  21. Tantra...

    Sign me up for less advanced please.
  22. I feel stuck, purposeless and confused

    Yep, that's how manipulation works...if you didn't feel and react the way you do, for instance compassionately and selflessly (feeling guilty or selfish), then you couldn't be manipulated. I think it's desirable to be natural and good, like you are...but at the same time, cultivating rationality (which you also are, by understanding clearly what's happening), and using both logic and heart to navigate through your path. Not good to be someone's doormat, which is always our choice...but good to take care of others, at the same time. Manipulators, or people who need help, don't make it easy to see the right steps to take...but perhaps if you wonder what the solution to this dilemma is, and continually calm your mind and let go of all thinking, the right path will present itself to your intuition.
  23. I feel stuck, purposeless and confused

    Well, no wonder you feel stuck! To me it seems like you're being manipulated, and a healthier relationship would enable you to establish boundaries (rather than her threatening suicide if you attempt to), such as being able to go wherever you wanted for however long you wanted. You should know that you aren't responsible for appeasing her issues...they are hers.
  24. I feel stuck, purposeless and confused

    I think online can be fine, so long as the teaching is good. It's not guaranteed that a good spiritual teacher will be in the closest city...we live in a good era, where we can research the best systems worldwide and then choose one.