RiKD   United States. Sep 08 2018 19:07. Posts 5036
The freakshow is back in town. I listened to music for the first time today in quite a while. It got me dancing and then it left me somewhat dissatisfied. I wanted new, better, more interesting music and even that felt like a dud. It coincided with my caffeine iv this morning. I had comic books to sell! There was a lot of interesting things I found out about comic books this morning. Most pretty much just appreciate with inflation or not even but in fact they actually depreciate in my case as the comics books age (comic book grade decreases). So, I had a huge stack of comic books valued at anywhere from $1-$5 ON PAPER. The problem is shipping is $3.75 which kind of kills all of those books on eBay. I could take the stack in to a comic book shop and haggle but I didn't even want to bother so I threw them in the recycling bin. There were some diamonds in the rough however. I am first selling one at about no profit just to get the hang of it. An education/trial of sorts so I know what I am doing when I get to the heavier hitters.
It's so easy on a day off after a big lunch being a little bit dissatisfied to come on here and write stuff. It's a sneaky addiction. I have been trying to follow the 8 precepts of Buddhism. One is eating before noon. I didn't quite make it today. I got lost in the comic book project and then my mom wanted help in the garden. I ate at about 12:30pm. Some days go by pretty smoothly and then others are tough. I experimented with drinking juices at night which is allowable but that seems to just start the craving for food and then sometimes the lust overcomes in a big way. It's actually easier on days that I work nights. I don't even really think about food. Chips and salsa or dark chocolate is a killer for me though.
The Blessed One is the Buddha:
"I have heard that on one occasion the Blessed One was wandering on a tour of Kasi with a large community of monks. There he addressed the monks: "I abstain from the night-time meal.1 As I am abstaining from the night-time meal, I sense next-to-no illness, next-to-no affliction, lightness, strength, & a comfortable abiding. Come now. You too abstain from the night-time meal. As you are abstaining from the night-time meal, you, too, will sense next-to-no illness, next-to-no affliction, lightness, strength, & a comfortable abiding."
I actually cannot be a monk due to my mental illness. So, why live the 8 precepts? I think it's the right thing to do. I have noticed my life to be more content and peaceful even if I slip up at times. That is actually the hard part. I just had this romanticism in my mind of doing tedious tasks and loading up on caffeine and listening to music and I just decided to do it. Kind of like I am just deciding to write this blog. I can feel a craving for music pretty strongly now. A craving that hasn't been there for weeks. This is suffering. Almost on a micro level. I never thought about this kind of thing when I was engulfing myself in music. Nothing really that bad happened except I was suffering and craving unknowingly.
Nothing is permanent.
So, I can't be a monk. Not that it was like this slam dunk that I could be a monk but it was motivating for me. Now, I have visions of me just being this shithead guy that calls himself Buddhist. The 5 precepts are rather elementary for someone that is in recovery for substance addiction. I think I still gossip but usually I catch myself or leave the conversation or just don't say anything. I know I repeat myself but I want to be the guy that sells pots down by the river. I have to find my version of that. I have been working more lately. It is harder to find time to meditate and study. I say this while writing a blog and like I meditate 4+ hours a day. But, it is a bit more difficult even if I only meditate 30min - 1 hr a day. I don't know. It's weird though. Now, that I can "only" be a lay person it's like I don't have to care. But, I do have to care if I want to be free of suffering. Not even in a Nibbana (Enlightenment) but just the reduction of suffering, dissatisfaction, negative emotions. I think even my positive emotions get blunted a bit because I know where that leads me too as well but I would like to carry a certain cheerfulness and joie de vivre with me during my days.
So, that's really why I attempt the 8 precepts on a daily basis. Peace and contentment. No euphoria, not feeling happiness or pleasures but an inner freedom. It's really quite different to how I ever lived my life up to 4.5 years ago and it feels like I am only now starting to understand it. For a while, I thought I could just be a "clean" addict. Fashion is "clean." Being cool is "clean." Vagina is "clean." Listening to music really loud and speeding on the highway is "clean." I didn't quite get it or I never really understood renouncement. The more I get rid of the better I feel. Perhaps I am clinging to that feeling. It gets to a point though where it gets tough to give up more. Caffeine has been the toughest thing I've ever given up. Sexual activity also but I am abstinent. I still drink 1-2 Monsters every morning. I would be at 10 precepts except for not handling or using money is basically impossible if one isn't a monk. Monks have 227 rules though. I don't think I have any interest in getting involved with THAT. I've read through them. Many of them are very specific to monks. My goal is just a guy man. A practitioner. An explorer. My fellow sufferers, I just want to suffer less.
RiKD   United States. Sep 08 2018 22:01. Posts 5036
So, I wrote a blog about comic books and the 8 precepts..... What am I doing? That attempt at escaping the void and dissatisfaction. Life is a bumpy road.
Btw, I realize my mom repeats stuff a lot and it really annoys me. Yet, I repeat stuff a lot....
RiKD   United States. Sep 09 2018 15:48. Posts 5036
On this Sunday morning at about 9:00 sun I have the inclination to write more. It seems that when I write a blog I do have the inclination to write more and faster. I have mentioned this before. Byung-Chul Han notes that communication in the form of blogs, twitter, facebook this phenomenon is natural. We are attempting to escape death. (Escape the void, boredom). I just meditated but I suppose I could meditate more. There is nothing to eat for breakfast so I am just not eating until my 1 meal at around 11-11:30. I had a night meal last night anyway. My mom brought home chips and made guacamole from scratch. I think she did this deliberately to get me to eat something at night. She doesn't like the idea of me "starving" myself. At least I didn't pig out last night and just had some minimal food to quell the food withdrawal symptoms. I was really hungry last night for some reason but I was also bored. Handful of grapes, some bean chips and guac, a small salad, a peach, and some cherries was my methadone (but I'm not a fan of methadone.... ughh). I go back and forth on this topic. The Buddha in the quoted Sutta above clearly is for the benefits of not eating a meal at night. He was directing this suggestion towards monks but it also hold true towards any human. Yuttadhammo Bhikku and his bhikkuni friend talk about that precept only really applying to monks or people spending their days meditating. An active layperson may need 2 or 3 meals in a day. I remember I had co-workers on the same schedule in a blast furnace. Coffee and tobacco for breakfast, coffee and tobacco for lunch and then one large meal when the shift ends at about 3-5pm. That doesn't follow the precept and it sounds horrible but it is eating once a day. In a way I am taking alms if my mother does the grocery shopping and makes the meal even if I help with the meal. It is important not to indulge in this food increasing my burden on my parents. There is no danger involved for me with taking alms at night. I think I will continue attempting to live this precept.
On the lust front I was at the beach yesterday and a woman walked out of the water with her friend and she was like something from my dreams. Great shape, great complexion, great hair, great swimsuit, great body within that swimsuit, the swimsuit is nothing without the body. The way she moved, the way she flipped her hair... I didn't want to picture her as muscle tissue or organs or a skeleton. All I could do was "seeing, seeing," "liking, liking," "wanting, wanting." I really was fixated on this woman. Then I went body surfing, then I walked back to my car, then I didn't really think much of it until now. Actually, I think I did look at some porn to see if I could find an ass and a figure like "the woman in the rose-beige swimsuit" but I was somewhat appalled by what I found. I had this "beautiful, romantic, erotic" fantasy in my mind and all that pornhub had to offer was banal pornography. Mindfulness, generally avoiding women, and certainly not flirting or touching them/letting them touch you has helped a lot. Sometimes it still feels like the sexual tension/libido gets really charged up for whatever reason and I just do my best to be mindful and let it pass. It's really an interesting perspective and I am so much better off than when I was engulfed by Tinder a few months ago. Even though I haven't had a ton of sex in my life I am addicted to sex, women, vagina. My levels of suffering and dissatisfaction and chaos get pretty bad. I am unsure if there is any level of ordinariness possible. Unattached appreciation does not apply to me.
Money I am realizing is tricky. I have been working more hours which I don't really like and at the same time I would need a boost in hourly and hours to get my own place. I was talking to my mom about how I am hoarding in my brother's basement and most of that stuff is standard stuff for an ordinary 1-2 bedroom place. I think I am over this idea of interior decorating or having some place that GQ suggests. I want an unordinary small, simple place. I will give my king size bed to my parents. I will just sleep on a sleeping bag on the floor. Very minimal stuff. I am not trying to impress people. It is just a shelter.
Clothing I am in a relatively good place with. I have enough. As I still enter into ordinary spaces on occasion there are some pieces of clothing I am kind of holding onto. I would like to discard my khakis (1), dress pants (1), my dress shirts (2), and suit (1) but I hold onto them. I was thinking if I should even go to weddings anymore or job interviews that require a suit. I shouldn't dance or listen to music and I don't drink and I don't particularly like weddings. I may just stop going to weddings unless someone asks me to be in the wedding party.
I think that's the major 4. Food, sex, money, clothing.
There is substances too. I just remembered a dream last night where I was at the beach doing a bunch of cocaine. It was beautiful wherever I was. I remember thinking how amazing the sun shining was, the waves, the color of the ocean and the sand. There was an aspect of thinking I was getting away with something but the other people on the beach knew what was going on. I was doing it in moderation though. It was like a 2 week vacation where I was just doing drugs in moderation. Drinking wine. I remember I had the thought "Well, I have 0 days clean but who cares." That is the dream. To be able to use drugs successfully but that is AA wordage. Buddhism wordage is a bit stronger. There is no such thing as using drugs successfully. It leads to suffering and clinging. What is the point in feeling good if you are just going to feel miserable. In my case with substances it became what is the point in feeling miserable if you are just going to feel worse.
What about blogs? Yeah. I am guilty obviously. Blogs are like my guilty pleasure. It's one thing I am having a helluva time letting go.
RiKD   United States. Sep 09 2018 16:26. Posts 5036
"Renunciation is not about depriving us of what is good. It is about letting go of what is causing suffering." - Matthieu Ricard
RiKD   United States. Sep 10 2018 14:21. Posts 5036
Monday slightly before 9:00
I just meditated. I should probably meditate more. This is the prime time that I come to LP. I just finished meditation and my food is still settling so I can't get into studying the Sattipatthana Sutta.
This is a time when I realize my life is quite simple. I meditate, I meditate, I study scriptures, I eat lunch, I go to the beach, I study scriptures, I meditate, I meditate, I habitually check LP quite a bit. On the days that I work I work obviously. I have been thinking if I just meditate every time I have the inclination to check LP I would be so much better off. I have been attempting to do this but obviously it isn't perfect. There is some reflection value that comes from writing for me. I could just write in a personal journal but I honestly feel that there is value in comments more than 1 in 100. Even if someone is challenging something with a stupid meme it makes me think about it. The goal is to reflect and understand reality. In meditation I realize my thoughts don't really matter. They are really quite fleeting and arise and pass away. I can become attached to a thought. Whether that is liking or disliking or it simply becomes a distraction to what is really happening. My belly is rising and falling. I want to force it. I want to get into a rhythm of noting "rising, falling" so I either follow the belly and note it appropriately or I force the issue and I am not practicing the meditation properly.
Does anyone on here have aspirations of ever practicing the Dhamma (Buddhism)?
I understand. Having full time+ jobs, trying to pay the bills, trying to wrestle pleasure out of this life, maybe owning a house, having a girlfriend/wife, wanting a girlfriend/wife, seduced by the material, it's all really quite interrelated and complicated. If you haven't had enough suffering/dissatisfaction why change? If life isn't that bumpy of a road why change?
I really enjoy the movie Fight Club. I could and I can relate. Blowing up your apartment and squatting and starting an organization to take down the banks is pretty fucking awesome. One thing I noticed is Tyler Durden is always doing stuff. He is fucking Marla, he is fighting, he is practicing with nunchucks, he is building bunk beds. Buddhism isn't as sexy but it is actually practical and reality. It is a way to escape. We can even let go of these ideals to be macho alpha males. Like, that is not even on the radar. It doesn't matter anymore. Freedom from suffering/dissatisfaction and understanding reality are all that matters. You realize that even the most macho alpha male is suffering especially since everyone is manipulating for that position.
The reason it's so hard for you to let go of blogging is the same reason people are hooked to social media and mindless browsing: dopamine feedback loops. Not knowing whether you will receive a reward, in the form of views, likes, comments, makes it addictive. Same mechanism that's behind slot machines as well. Deprived of communities, we are rendered powerless in the face of these digital technologies. Of course, my posting this here reinforces your behavior, since you got something from this blog now. I wonder, if everyone ignored your blogs 100% of the time, how long do you think it'd take to be unhooked?
For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong. (Mencken)
Last edit: 10/09/2018 19:34
RiKD   United States. Sep 10 2018 20:48. Posts 5036
It might take a while to get unhooked since I usually get some response some non-100% of the time. I get most excited when I am checking LP or when I see someone has responded. No responses would just result in a higher dopamine response for a while until I don't know. Then any response would just make it even worse according to this video. 100% response rate on any post or blog wouldn't cure it either as each response is a different payout. It's like there are different suitcases that I open if someone has responded by clicking on the thread I get to see what's inside. It's pretty similar to browsing girls gone wild on reddit, bonjourmadame.fr, or pornhub. So, where do I go from here? I don't actually want to abstain from these things as the suffering is not too terribly perceivable. I tried to meditate any time I had the inclination to check the internet for diamonds which worked out slightly better than not trying. I meditated once more than I normally would have versus checking the internet for diamonds probably a handful of times. The fact that there is some insight here and an actual response may only make my checking for diamonds increasingly worse.
hiems   United States. Sep 11 2018 03:26. Posts 1455