Yonkon

I feel stuck, purposeless and confused

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Hey there,

i feel a bit down and thought that here i maybe find help.

 

In most aspects of my life, i'm struggling. Nothing really serious, i'm a pretty average joe. I'm not in a crisis. But for more than a year now, i seem to be stuck. It feels like that i froze, and now everyday is the same. This is a huge step up for me - before that i would have big ups and downs that really sucked the spirit out of me. Now everything is ok, "ok" in the blandest and most boring sense. First i started to escape the blandness of life with drugs: smoking dope, experimenting with psychedelics. I realized that this is not the answer for me. Then i started with spiritual practices. I tried so many different techniques, but i always quit after a while. I've done doing nothing, focus on the breath, mantra, visualisation, hatha, kriya, 9 breaths of purification and tsa lung. Now i start with doing nothing again and it's so frustrating. I cling to the idea of "progress", because progress means escaping the blandness. Most likely the answer is "accept the blandness and love it" but i can't. Maybe i'm scared to do that, maybe i don't know how. 

 

I just don't know what to do. Not in a desperate sense, more like in the ending scene of finding nemo: 

(great movie by the way)

 

The last seconds perfectly capture my feeling. I don't have a purpose. I'm don''t have a cause that i want to fight for. I'm just floating in ocean, trapped in a plastic bag. 

 

Can anyone relate to this? Any help is appreciated. 

 

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Sounds like you just need to figure out who you are, what you like and dislike, what you value in life, what you can never accept, etc. It helps if you don't live your life entirely for appeasing yourself, but look toward making the world a better place...think about others just as much as you think about yourself.

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17 minutes ago, Aetherous said:

Sounds like you just need to figure out who you are

 

yep that's it. This is a life theme for me. I struggle with this for years. I'm completely confused in terms of identity and sense of self. How  can i figure this stuff out? 

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11 minutes ago, Yonkon said:

yep that's it. This is a life theme for me. I struggle with this for years. I'm completely confused in terms of identity and sense of self. How  can i figure this stuff out? 

 

Find a spiritual teacher, and try to attain the ultimate.

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Just now, Aetherous said:

 

Find a spiritual teacher, and try to attain the ultimate.

 

I assume the teacher has to be met face to face, online will not do, right? I live in a small town, the next big city is pretty far away. I'm probably making excuses right now, but still.. it seems that this is not possible for me right now.

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1 minute ago, Yonkon said:

I assume the teacher has to be met face to face, online will not do, right? I live in a small town, the next big city is pretty far away. I'm probably making excuses right now, but still.. it seems that this is not possible for me right now.

 

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.

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Many questions

 

 

what is there to do?

what must be accomplished?

aside from you being you?

 

improve the world for others?  sounds wonderful.

what improves the world for others?

what improves it for everyone?

who decides what is improvement?

when is enough improving enough?

 

do you require meaning for your life?

if so, who outside of you can give this to you?

or create it for you?

who knows you more intimately than you?

 

who are you?  what are you?

do you owe the universe for your body?

are you indebted for your experience of awareness?

 

sit.  become still and quiet.

when quiet you will hear life.

then not only does the teacher appear...

all of life is revealed as a teacher.

 

every stone, insect, breeze and leaf.

seek, or sit, truth is revealed.

even untruth is worthy, as it reveals truth when revealed as untruth.

 

find teachers in everything

and realize the anchor of the source is in your very essence

you grew out of this world, like a tree grows from soil

a natural part of all of nature

 

what are you inherently lacking that could be added to you from outside to make not lacking?

who aside from you can know what this may be?  stranger on internet?  author of book? 

teacher of sitting in stillness, or breathing and moving?

 

all questions I obsessed, played, rejected, ingested and released time and again as I've explored exactly the sentiments you shared in your opening statement.

 

thanks for reminding me again of the worthiness of every aspect of existence and non-existence.

 

i'm reminded of Shunryu Suzuki again.  Everything is perfect, just as it is.  And there is room for improvement.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

what determines value?

what has most worth?

seeking or sitting, striving or accepting?

is effort greater than release?

did the buddha sit to awaken?

or sit while awake?

Edited by silent thunder
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What's keeping you where you are? Family? Do you have debts to pay, so you're sticking with your job? What's preventing you from radically changing your life? Hopefully these questions aren't too personal to ask on this forum. But, sometimes we have to realize that it is our own choices that have put is where we are. Maybe it's time to choose differently and break from the old patterns.

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You're probably right , you're stuck ,

the ups and downs have left you pinned to habits you trust.

You cant find your way out of the plastic bag ;)  

unless....... 

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, escott said:

What's keeping you where you are? Family? Do you have debts to pay, so you're sticking with your job? What's preventing you from radically changing your life? Hopefully these questions aren't too personal to ask on this forum. But, sometimes we have to realize that it is our own choices that have put is where we are. Maybe it's time to choose differently and break from the old patterns.

 

I have a girlfriend, she's got a anxiety disorder. We live together, this means when i go out for 2 hours she get's panic attacks.This means i can't wander around. I miss being alone. But i can't because she will break down. The last time she said she would kill herself. It's pretty dysfunctional. I love her, it's hard.

Edited by Yonkon
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15 minutes ago, Yonkon said:

 

I have a girlfriend, she's got a anxiety disorder. We live together, this means when i go out for 2 hours she get's panic attacks.This means i can't wander around. I miss being alone. But i can't because she will break down. The last time she said she would kill herself. It's pretty dysfunctional. I love her, it's hard.

 

Are you prepared to live this way for the next 50 years? Choices...

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6 minutes ago, escott said:

 

Are you prepared to live this way for the next 50 years? Choices...

 

It will not come to this, but it breaks my heart. She's making progress. I hope it will work out.

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28 minutes ago, Yonkon said:

We live together, this means when i go out for 2 hours she get's panic attacks.This means i can't wander around.

 

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.

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29 minutes ago, Yonkon said:

 

I have a girlfriend, she's got a anxiety disorder. We live together, this means when i go out for 2 hours she get's panic attacks.This means i can't wander around. I miss being alone. But i can't because she will break down. The last time she said she would kill herself. It's pretty dysfunctional. I love her, it's hard.

 

I feel for you. It's not easy to care for people, but you can't let caring for someone else take over your life. That's not fair to you. Somehow you'll need to find a way to share your lives with each other while also having your own lives. Perhaps you have a hobby you enjoy? You could set up a shop in the garage. Or maybe you enjoy sport and can join a local team. It doesn't matter, as long as it's something that you can call your own.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Yonkon said:

 

I have a girlfriend, she's got a anxiety disorder. We live together, this means when i go out for 2 hours she get's panic attacks.This means i can't wander around. I miss being alone. But i can't because she will break down. The last time she said she would kill herself. It's pretty dysfunctional. I love her, it's hard.

There have been times in my thirty year marriage when I have experienced the same.

Deep trauma requires time to process.  Suicidal tendencies on occasion have kept me close to home.  Sometimes it was me, other times her.  Though I have not perceived these times as chains binding me from finding and experiencing truth.

 

They were inroads to uncovering new depth of life right where I am in that moment.  To be able to be a healing presence for one I love... what is a higher calling?  Is there more meaning in a monestary?  Or a job?  Or meditating?

 

For me, connection is life's meaning.

 

Twenty years ago it was me, relying on her to stay close and be my hope.  Over the last seven years, she has unveiled deep trauma and experienced a total spiritual collapse.  I have experienced an unfolding of awareness in my holding space for her and adding my effort to providing a place conducive to healing in our home.

 

Things of this nature are cyclical.   Working with it is like peeling an onion.

Many layers, seem the same, induce some pain and tears.

 

Remind her in the darkest times, the only constant is change.  Life is change.

It cannot remain the same.  The layers are not the same. 

 

this realization arose spontaneously in one of my own suicidal moments:

"why make a permanent decision, based on a temporary emotion, or way of seeing the world?"

Life skill is developed over the course of a life... let it.

 

It may seem like it's the same pain, but it's another layer.

and eventually when peeling to the center of our pain.

we found the same thing in both our pain and the onion...

 

nothing was there... aside from mis-identification perhaps with memory and response to stimuli

 

I can whole heartedly endorse that this does not inhibit a full life.  We have traveled the globe, performed shakespeare, checkov and ibsen in front of tens of thousands, moved across the continent multiple times, brought a loving son into the world.  And in my not abandoning my love for her for convenience or something shiny on the horizon... I have uncovered a shine in my own raw presence of which I was previously unaware.

 

You sound connected and present.  Those are rare qualities in my experience.

Doubt is a friend I've found.  I find it shifts awareness out of complacency into presence.

 

Presence is the one thing I think we can truly offer another.

All else may be lost, stolen, broken... but presence... once shared.

 

rings of the eternal to me.

Edited by silent thunder
added the realization bit and fixed some spelling.
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I would suggest to continue searching... I am sure there's something out there.  You said "I'm doing nothing again and it's so frustrating".  Find something you like.

 

You've made a thread about the whole "No effort" , "Stop seeking" mentality that exists in some spiritual circles.  I don't think this concept can be forced - it has to happen naturally.  Until it does, I would suggest to continue your search and trying to make progress.

 

I don't think any of us would be on this forum, if we had not been seekers, trying to make progress.  That process has to run it's course, and it would be a disservice to tell you not to do something you want to do.

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As for your girlfriend she needs help of some sort.

Is she doing any work on herself ?
If not, the prognosis is not good, you gotta get real, better early than later.

Trying to save someone is just ... not good, every therapist book warns about this pattern of trying to save someone, it's very unhealthy.

Try to save her for 2 weeks, if it doesn't work ... accept you need external help.

 

 

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Some soft words I chanced upon today that might add a drop of inspiration to the ocean of seeming despair..... 

 

 

an important process

In changing your patterns 

and unconscious programs

Is feeling the impulse to behave 

in a certain habitual way

and choosing not to act on it. 

Instead, just sitting with the feeling. 

 

~ maryam hasnaa

 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Aetherous said:

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.

 

It is very obvious to me that this is the truth. Still, it feels so wrong to be this "selfish".

Also, we both signed the paper that binds us for more than a year to the apartment, so i can't just walk out of the door. 

 

2 hours ago, silent thunder said:

To be able to be a healing presence for one I love... what is a higher calling?  Is there more meaning in a monestary?  Or a job?  Or meditating?

 

This is very inspiring, thank you. I got this feeling that this relationship is perfect for me, that we found each other to work things out. But also i have the doubt that this is denial, dependency and ignorance. 

1 hour ago, Fa Xin said:

You've made a thread about the whole "No effort" , "Stop seeking" mentality that exists in some spiritual circles.  I don't think this concept can be forced - it has to happen naturally.  Until it does, I would suggest to continue your search and trying to make progress.

 

Over the years i build up the identity of the "effortless dude that stopped trying", i think it's time to let that go. Thank you.

 

1 hour ago, rideforever said:

Yeah, but ... who are you ?

Where are you, which country, are you on a farm, or in downtown ?
What do you do, in 24 hrs ?
Where do you live, and with who, and what's your work, what's the workspace like?
What's your family like ?
 

You see this is not a "general" thing ... nobody can help you just with this question.   What is your life like ?
You say you don't like it, like you are in a plastic bag ... okay well that means you aren't living well.

Why you feel like that ?
When you are with your friends, what's it like ?  Good ... boring or what ?
And work ?


And looking back when you were young or whatever, when DID you feel alive ?

Does that help understand things a bit ?

 

What time do you wake up in the morning ?  Does the alarm ring for 20 minutes before you can face the day, or are up like on a springboard ?
Do you spend your day with cans on your eyes, and watch porn all night ?
Or are you making spirulina milkshakes for lunch ?
What do you actually do ?

 

Damn this triggers me. It was probably intentional but your post felt very aggressive. You  are absolutely right with all points. It's an individual thing, and even if i wrote a wall of text to answer all of these questions, nobody can truly help me besides myself. On the other hand, i do believe its also a "general thing". Feeling stuck is a universal thing, and i wanted to know if someone on this forum can relate. 

Edited by Yonkon
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1 minute ago, Yonkon said:

It is very obvious to me that this is the truth. Still, it feels so wrong to be this "selfish".

 

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.

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Bored with blandness, you seek escape.  Not uncommon. 

 

 The most common two routes would be finding a passion.  Some new challenge physical, mental, spiritual, artistic.. kind of thing to give some uumph to your life. 

 

The other route is what you've guessed, acceptance, but to get out of the rut, do your roles better.  As a boyfriend, strategize, plan how could you do it better. romance, fun, massage.. new activity, .  At work, at home, define your roles and figure out how to do it better, really shine.  Not for forever, but for a month.  Define a role, and hit it out of the ball park.   This also takes you out of me me me mode.  Which can also be helpful. 

 

Movement creates opportunity. 

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4 hours ago, Yonkon said:

 

yep that's it. This is a life theme for me. I struggle with this for years. I'm completely confused in terms of identity and sense of self. How  can i figure this stuff out? 

 

In another thread here about 'why do you think the world is so messed up ' I was going to approach those themes . I outlined some stuff but didnt deliver the meat ... the answers .  As no one asked , so what's the point .

 

But here you are asking questions with the same answers  ( to my process outlined in 2 

 

    ) , so i will give them here .

 

The 'world' ,   societies  and individuals get 'messed up' for the same reasons .

 

The basic cause is  lack of or not understanding purpose.  To cut it short, the answer is societies and individuals in  trouble lack a sense of purpose , belonging and expression - we need to creatively express ourselves and our own collective and INDIVIDUAL creative natures within a context that is appreciated and relevant . This has been done by all human cultures via the process of initiation.

 

When a society  looses that process , due to a variety of reasons , it and its individuals become 'pointless'  . In modern society, and our places in it, it has become a lot less 'spiritual' process than it was . basically we where turned into automatons - units for work .

 

In a healthy tribal society an initiated man or woman knows exactly why they are here and what their purpose and contribution is . They get fulfilled by that and  can become spiritually healthy by acting and living in a way a human is meant to  and having input into their society from an expressed creative level.

 

Once I was talking to some initiated Aboriginal men, one was at a total loss to even begin to comprehend white society : " I went to this thing, white fellah spiritual thing , okay, I wanted to find out . They all sitting around; ' Why am I here, what is the purpose of life ? '  What ? They dont know ???  How can amman even live by not knowing  why he is here, what he has to do and what the purpose of life is ? What?  Whitefellah dont know what the purpose of life is ? No wonder he all messed up !  He must not even know what he is doing here."

 

That was an eye opener !

 

We have lost this.  We just fumble along and hope some type of religion will replace the initiation process.  Some find a process and undergo initiation, others do it in their own ways .  But at its heart is a teaching and experience of belonging and understanding one's individual purpose and fulfilment  and what work one does . And that work should be an expression of your own inner nature and contribution , it should be enjoyed, something you love to do .... not some purposeless 'grind'  for unseen or trivial benefit .

 

So, the remedy would be to seek out that and find your purpose and your individual work and  creative contribution - dharma .

 

I first encountered  this in my early studies; an anthropologist was observing an African village, each day he would sit in the village square, near the markets and watch normal day to day activity . There was always a bunch of young men with a couple of older ones, goofing off, hanging out, not really doing anything and often causing trouble. The anthropologist asked someone who they where and was told they where the ..... ( I cant remember the term, it was in local language ) .... the men who, for one reason or another , missed out on their initiations . They where men 'cast adrift' without purpose .... who had not been led to understand the big picture, how they fitted in , what they had to offer and what they would get back.

 

I listed some nasty stuff that people devolve to without these higher ideals and ethics in the other thread. The same happened here with the Australian Aboriginals - near decimation. Their reason and purpose and individual  essential creative expression where virtually wiped out  out 'over night'  .  But currently many have reinstated their culture, their pride and their initiation process for the boys and things are improving.

 

So, I encourage you to undergo the process and find your 'true self' and purpose - not the one that society hijacked you with . Without that, all the religions, cults, practices, drugs,  distractions, etc  ........   meh .

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4 hours ago, Yonkon said:

 

I assume the teacher has to be met face to face, online will not do, right? I live in a small town, the next big city is pretty far away. I'm probably making excuses right now, but still.. it seems that this is not possible for me right now.

 

Also, reading your first post I thought you might need to take a little trip , change the view - so to speak.

 

In the 'old system'   a young man would begin his initiation as an apprentice, learning off a master. The trade or art would show stages and analogies related to his own spiritual development . hence he had practical demonstration of the analogies everyday.

 

After a while he would 'get his ticket'  , be a 'tradesman'  - a 'man and brother' this would lead to the next stage ; 'Journeyman' - he was expected to travel and ply his trade, encounter and learn from other places and cultures , how what he does fits in with that and what he learns 'abroad' could be adapted for himself . next stage he would be Master (of his craft and himself)  and it would be his duty to take on an apprentice and  continue the cycle . Also, back then this was often done father to son further cementing development .

 

That all got messed up by the industrial revolution.

 

I know it might not be practical to travel, but sometimes you gotta just break the bottle you are in and do it .. and  dash the consequences !

 

A student asked his Sufi teacher how to attain and he told him " Go jump in the river ! "

 

(well, obviously the guy was at that stage - I doubt the teacher told everyone that :D

 

So he did, he went and jumped in the river ... and got swept downstream. Eventually he became tired so he hung onto a log. Eventually that got harder and he started to go under . A fisherman in a boat picked him up  and asked him what happened . Thinking he must be an idiot, he took him home, gave him some food and a warm spot by the fire to dry out . The next day, he got him to repair some nets to pay for the food he had eaten . he did a pretty good job so the fisherman let him stay , now he had a helper fisherman. The student fished everyday with him and began to become known in that area . Sometimes he would give poor people fish that couldnt pay.  After many years he became well known and liked . But after a while he got bored again, that was not really the life for him, so he continued downstream , now in his own boat he had earned by his own work.

 

He eventually saw some people waiting by the river looking agitated and waving to him so he went over and asked them what was wrong .  " The ferryman's boat has sunk, we have no way to get across, can you take us?"  So he did. On the otherside they offered him a few coins .  He stayed there and did that for a while, also doing other jobs and still some fishing. He supplied transport and food to the needy and accrued a tidy little sum of money as he lived frugally.  Ocassionally he would visit the poor and sick and help where he could, people started to say they felt better after after his visits  Then he  started moving bricks and lumbar downstream for a man who was building a house. It seems a fascinating project and he helped the man a bit. It was noticed that he was a quick learner so the man gave him a job as a building assistant .  The student really liked that work, so he sold his boat and concentrated on that. he still visited the sick and poor and helped when he could. people still claimed they felt better after his visits - some even came to visit him, and claimed they had been 'healed' .

 

Eventually the student became a Sufi saint , renowned for his healing and ' spiritual grace ' .  Eventually he too got some students. They would ask how he got his powers and under what great teachers he studied . He told them he didnt ... he jut jumped in a river one day and all this stuff happened to him .

 

Of course, these new students  didnt believe that, so they concocted their own magnificent story of magic,  wonder , exotic teaches and practices that gave special powers .  That  made up t story still exists today and describes the life of one of the great Sufi saints . 

 

But it be BS  :)

 

(Hmmm ... the last guy here I told to  'go jump in a river'    had a 'foxy' icon too        )

image.gif

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