middle_path

Feeling pretty lost, want to get into a good routine practice, but feel like I just keep starting over.

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At the risk of pouring my heart out, I started to really get curious about spirituality, magic, occult, energy, etc. toward the end of 2016. Since then I've polished off a few books, jumped in to a few systems, and generally tried to educate myself on this vast vast world. Turns out, a lot of it seems like BS, but a lot of it rings pretty true for me. I've had a few encounters in my life that have kept me from being a staunch materialist (typical ghost stuff), but for some reason when it comes to astral projection, energy work, magic, etc. I just don't "feel" it. Even after months of consistent practice. Or if I do, it's extremely subtle and feels fake/placebo.

 

As of right now, I have a very busy life. Work, commute, and family make it difficult to even sit down for more than 5 minutes without just wanting to sleep instead. 

 

I'm not looking for encouragement. That's great and all. But I would like to know some good "foot-in-the-door" practices that would help someone like me feel more energy. Something that's just a few minutes a day and could lead to bigger things. 

 

If it can be avoided, no giant books or anything. I'm suffering from information overload big time and it never seems to help. 

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I would recommend maybe some quiet sitting practice.  Just sit there and feel. 

 

With a hectic and busy schedule, it’s easy to get lost in the shuffle. Makes it hard to feel stuff. 

 

Any sort of practice that gets you to turn inward and feel. Physical practices would help - yoga, tai chi or qigong. 

 

But since your short on time... just sitting quietly and scanning your body. Noticing how things feel - where your keeping tension or the sensations. 

 

All the stuff your interested in are “inner” practices. We must learn to go inside ourself and feel, relax. 

 

A few minutes a day of this can go far. 

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Or, go the other way. 

Start with a nasty standing practice that will rock your world. 

 

Santi from xing yi? 

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1 minute ago, Mudfoot said:

Or, go the other way. 

Start with a nasty standing practice that will rock your world. 

 

Santi from xing yi? 

 

Not for the faint of heart !

 

But will surely get you tuned into the body. 

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Funny reading the OP, I was thinking of standing practice too.   Good bang for buck.. and you just stand, though some of the practices like Xing Yi, are get hard pretty fast.  I'm thinking thats similar to 5 element standing stuff.

 

If you got 15 minutes I'd point towards Rawn Clarks Archaeous, that can be done standing.  A kind of Elemental stacking practice -http://abardoncompanion.de/Arch-Info.html .  I find chanting to be a great practice, even better when in the shower.  You can find a chant, or piece of music you like or going further find a canticle like Rawn Clarks YHVH which has a couple of levels including some healing aspects http://abardoncompanion.de/TMO-Links.html a practice that fits perfectly well into shower time, imo. 

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25 minutes ago, middle_path said:

As of right now, I have a very busy life. Work, commute, and family make it difficult to even sit down for more than 5 minutes without just wanting to sleep instead. 

 

With this being the case, perhaps the practice where you do nothing is best, similar to what Fa Xin said. Just be alone in a room, unwind, and finally have a moment to process shit. If you can't help falling asleep during it, then do what Mudfoot said, and stand.

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These have all been some great suggestions. And I thank you all. 

 

I will say that the idea of just following my breath and "being" is extremely attractive given my weekday life. Unfortunately I always get bored when I do this (a common block). I'm so damn interested in the other world, piercing the veil and all that and I feel that desire really takes away from what I need. 

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Posted (edited)
21 minutes ago, middle_path said:

These have all been some great suggestions. And I thank you all. 

 

I will say that the idea of just following my breath and "being" is extremely attractive given my weekday life. Unfortunately I always get bored when I do this (a common block). I'm so damn interested in the other world, piercing the veil and all that and I feel that desire really takes away from what I need. 

 

Think of the sitting practice like you first have to locate the veil before you pierce it. 

 

How about focusing on a higher being that can help you? Might be more interesting. In the form of a mantra or praying. 

 

Ive never been a “follow your breath” guy, either. But stuff like Bhakti yoga is fun and has juice for you to feel. 

 

 

Edited by Fa Xin

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14 minutes ago, middle_path said:

These have all been some great suggestions. And I thank you all. 

 

I will say that the idea of just following my breath and "being" is extremely attractive given my weekday life. Unfortunately I always get bored when I do this (a common block). I'm so damn interested in the other world, piercing the veil and all that and I feel that desire really takes away from what I need. 

It is pretty boring.  I've found counting helps a bit.  Beginning by counting each breath as 1in-2out, 3 in 4 out.., so at the 10 count you've done 5 breaths then go back to 1.   Harder is one count per breath, up to 10, repeat.  Doc Morris would have the student go back to 1 if an extraneous thought came up, making it harder still.  Or straight count up to 100, timing how long it takes.  Counting also forces you to keep your concentration honed. 

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Sounds like you’re doing better than just fooling yourself with delusion!

 

The reality of the matter is that this sort of stuff takes time and effort, it’s often difficult, uncomfortable and repetitive. There is no practice you can do for 5 minutes a day that will give you transformational experiences, sorry.

 

You have to be honest with yourself with this stuff - if this is all just a passing interest that you don’t have time for and find boring, then why stress yourself out trying to force it?

 

Think about it this way, if someone came to you saying they love the sound of the guitar, but don’t have time to learn to play, can’t afford a guitar or lessons and find playing for a few minutes really boring - what would you suggest? I’d say why bother with it at all!? Find something you actually enjoy :)

 

I think some good exercise and a walk in the woods will do far more for you than forcing yourself to do some practice you don’t enjoy. Even better, why not do some exercise in the woods... Take your family too :)

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I’d echo the recommendation to investigate mantras. Some can be down at anytime, anywhere, and reciting them can be a very “portable” practice.

 

The Zhunti / Cundi mantra has been the one constant as I’ve tried various Qigong practices over the past few years. It’s done a lot for me, and when done earnestly for enough time, you might feel various energy flows (in addition to a lot of other benefits!). It’s a great “teacher” I’ve found. 

 

hope that helps!

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11 minutes ago, freeform said:

Sounds like you’re doing better than just fooling yourself with delusion!

 

The reality of the matter is that this sort of stuff takes time and effort, it’s often difficult, uncomfortable and repetitive. There is no practice you can do for 5 minutes a day that will give you transformational experiences, sorry.

 

You have to be honest with yourself with this stuff - if this is all just a passing interest that you don’t have time for and find boring, then why stress yourself out trying to force it?

 

Think about it this way, if someone came to you saying they love the sound of the guitar, but don’t have time to learn to play, can’t afford a guitar or lessons and find playing for a few minutes really boring - what would you suggest? I’d say why bother with it at all!? Find something you actually enjoy :)

 

I think some good exercise and a walk in the woods will do far more for you than forcing yourself to do some practice you don’t enjoy. Even better, why not do some exercise in the woods... Take your family too :)

 

In time, I feel I can definitely add more time to it. I'm just now entering the busy season with work and my wife and I are expecting our second child toward the fall, so I'm anticipating a large lack of time for practice. 

 

For some reason, I can't shake the desire. Probably from my previous ghost encounters as a child. I think my issue is that after months of following a magic system and feeling zero benefits/results and dedicating half an hour+ daily - one begins to lose interest. At least if it were a guitar I would feel actual improvement. 

 

I love my family and gardening. If I could just spend time with them outdoors for the rest of my life I would be satisfied. But, again, it nags at me. Whatever I'm looking for. I just want to find a spot to dig one deep hole, instead of dozens of shallow ones. 

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Posted (edited)

You’re going to get lots of advice from lots of people about many different practices - but in the end it comes down to focus, dedication, discipline and time put into practice. 

 

The reality is that spiritual practices aren't easy. There are no shortcuts. They’re full of pitfalls, deception and delusion. It all needs to be navigated carefully. It’s definitely harder than playing the guitar!

 

To get anywhere you’ll need to find a proper teacher to start with and dedicate time each and every day - probably a lot more than 30 minutes to be honest. Both of these are pretty hard to do - let alone with a new baby (congratulations by the way!)

 

Not only that, it sometimes takes years to get any big breakthroughs.

 

And when I suggested exercise, it actually is a great start on the energetic arts - it’ll get you actually producing more energy, get you into your body and you'll experience some benefits rather quickly. It’s a good foundation to build on. You could probably combine it with gardening too:)

 

Might seem boring but just like with anything - good sleep habits, physical exercise and a good diet are the only way to make good progress with the internal arts.

 

That’s the base you build from. When these things are in place, something like developing awareness of your breath becomes much easier, less boring and more productive.

 

You’re bound to find your way - your intention is there. Just take one thing at a time and develop discipline with the basics and you’ll see that you’re already on the path without having realised it :)

Edited by freeform
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21 hours ago, middle_path said:

At the risk of pouring my heart out, I started to really get curious about spirituality, magic, occult, energy, etc. toward the end of 2016. Since then I've polished off a few books, jumped in to a few systems, and generally tried to educate myself on this vast vast world. Turns out, a lot of it seems like BS, but a lot of it rings pretty true for me. I've had a few encounters in my life that have kept me from being a staunch materialist (typical ghost stuff), but for some reason when it comes to astral projection, energy work, magic, etc. I just don't "feel" it. Even after months of consistent practice. Or if I do, it's extremely subtle and feels fake/placebo.

 

As of right now, I have a very busy life. Work, commute, and family make it difficult to even sit down for more than 5 minutes without just wanting to sleep instead. 

 

I'm not looking for encouragement. That's great and all. But I would like to know some good "foot-in-the-door" practices that would help someone like me feel more energy. Something that's just a few minutes a day and could lead to bigger things. 

 

If it can be avoided, no giant books or anything. I'm suffering from information overload big time and it never seems to help. 

Why don't you start with a moving practice like taijiquan? It is not a 5 minute workout, but once you learn the form, you can finish a form like the chengmanqing 37-form set in 8-10 minutes on each side (ie left side and right side). If you don't have time to do both sides in one go, do one side in the morning and the other side in the night (or whenever you have time).

 

You can get some pretty authoritative training material here -- https://www.taichitao.tv

The lessons are not very expensive its second best to having a real teacher of the system.

I'll recommend starting here -- https://www.taichitao.tv/categories/beginner

Each of the single forms taught in the videos can become hour long meditations too. I recommend this type of practice for those who don't have the ability to sit still and meditate. Besides, this type of moving meditation has health benefits too. 

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@middle_path I find myself in a similar situation, so I can fully identify what you're going through. You said you were doing some magic without the results you were looking for. Can I ask:

 

What is your goal?

 

Different methods produce different results. I've tried a little bit of everything over the past 30 years (I even play guitar). I could make some recommendations if I understood what you are trying to accomplish.

 

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Perhaps its when you feel most lost that you will realy find what you are after.

 

You sound pretty self-aware.  I know you don't want info overload, but maybe a book like Cosmic Ordering or The Secret could help you find the answer to what you are after, since you seem to know how to ask the question.

 

Good luck!

 

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