Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

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philosopher
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Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by philosopher » Wed Sep 12, 2018 1:27 am

I've had noisy neighbors for the last couple of years now. They are actually violating the city's noise code but the police say that they will not enforce it. While investigating practical, external steps to take I have also been trying to work with reducing the suffering associated with hearing the noise. If you've come across any talks, writings, or techniques of your own that have been helpful in situations like these, could you please share them? I can hear every word of their conversations, which really disturbs the inner silence that I try to maintain throughout the day, and there's also children shrieking/screaming, dogs barking, etc. I'm trying to experiment with as many techniques as I can find in order to reduce the impact of the noise.

Thank you. :anjali:

chownah
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by chownah » Wed Sep 12, 2018 2:09 am

Just keep at it. Eventually you will only hear what is heard and you will stop being chewed up by sounds.
......you could get ear plugs.....
chownah

jabalí
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by jabalí » Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:25 pm

Why waste your time being interested in those things? It's the nature of light to be bright. It's the nature of noise to be loud. That's what their functions are. If you don't focus on listening, that's the end of the matter. Act in a way that's not in opposition to your surroundings, for that's just the way they are. Simply reach a genuine understanding with them using deep discernment, that's all

Ajahn Dune
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/tha ... eleft.html

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Sam Vara
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:54 pm

...and the famous Ajahn Chah passage, which actually comes in several forms throughout his collected teachings:
It's the same with sankhāras. We say they disturb us, like when we sit in meditation and hear a sound. We think, ''Oh, that sound's bothering me.'' If we understand that the sound bothers us then we suffer accordingly. If we investigate a little deeper, we will see that it's we who go out and disturb the sound! The sound is simply sound. If we understand like this then there's nothing more to it, we leave it be. We see that the sound is one thing, we are another. One who understands that the sound comes to disturb him is one who doesn't see himself. He really doesn't! Once you see yourself, then you're at ease. The sound is just sound, why should you go and grab it? You see that actually it was you who went out and disturbed the sound.
https://www.ajahnchah.org/book/Middle_Way_Within1.php

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Volovsky
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by Volovsky » Thu Sep 13, 2018 3:05 am

Once I have met a guy, who had a headset, which was similar to those big anti-noise headsets, they use on firing ground or for jackhammer. But his headset was more advanced: there was a button by pressing which the noise was completely cut. I don't know, how this worked, but was very effective, also it doesn't irritate the ear like the ear plugs. He said it was expensive. It is probably not convenient to use it all the time, but at least for meditation might be an option. Unfortunately I don't know the details.

paul
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by paul » Thu Sep 13, 2018 3:39 am

It is essential for the practice to have a basis of samatha meditation so the practitioner needs to go to a wilderness area for several hours each day. As for eliminating noise in the social environment, there are Sony noise-cancelling headphones.

"He discerns that 'Whatever disturbances that would exist based on the perception of village are not present. Whatever disturbances that would exist based on the perception of human being are not present. There is only this modicum of disturbance: the singleness based on the perception of wilderness.’”—-MN 121

pegembara
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by pegembara » Thu Sep 13, 2018 4:55 am

Negative feelings are in you, not in reality. So stop trying to change reality. That's crazy! Stop trying to change the other person. We spend all our time and energy trying to change external circumstances, trying to change our spouses, our bosses, our friends, our enemies, and everybody else. We don't have to change anything. Negative feelings are in you. No person on earth has the power to make you unhappy. There is no event on earth that has the power to disturb you or hurt you. No event, condition, situation, or person. Nobody told you this; they told you the opposite. That's why you're in the mess that you're in right now. That is why you're asleep. They never told you this. But it's self-evident.

Let's suppose that rain washes out a picnic. Who is feeling negative? The rain? Or YOU? What's causing the negative feeling? The rain or your reaction? When you bump your knee against a table, the table's fine. It's busy being what it was made to Be -- a table. The pain is in your knee, not in the table. The mystics keep trying to tell us that reality is all right. Reality is not problematic. Problems exist only in the human mind. We might add: in the stupid, sleeping human mind. Reality is not problematic. Take away human beings from this planet and life would go on, nature would go on in all its loveliness and violence. Where would the problem be? No problem. You created the problem. You are the problem. You identified with "me" and that is the problem. The feeling is in you, not in reality.

Anthony de Mello
And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech.

philosopher
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by philosopher » Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:04 am

Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:54 pm
...and the famous Ajahn Chah passage, which actually comes in several forms throughout his collected teachings:
It's the same with sankhāras. We say they disturb us, like when we sit in meditation and hear a sound. We think, ''Oh, that sound's bothering me.'' If we understand that the sound bothers us then we suffer accordingly. If we investigate a little deeper, we will see that it's we who go out and disturb the sound! The sound is simply sound. If we understand like this then there's nothing more to it, we leave it be. We see that the sound is one thing, we are another. One who understands that the sound comes to disturb him is one who doesn't see himself. He really doesn't! Once you see yourself, then you're at ease. The sound is just sound, why should you go and grab it? You see that actually it was you who went out and disturbed the sound.
https://www.ajahnchah.org/book/Middle_Way_Within1.php
I fully believe that it is possible to perceive sound in this way, but I am unsure about how to achieve this in practical terms. I think I need more detailed guidance. Is this a perception to adopt - i.e. just sound (perhaps use a noting technique? "sound, sound")?

philosopher
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by philosopher » Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:06 am

@Volovksy and @paul, I have tried many noise canceling headphones - including top of the line ones by Bose as well ones designed for shooting ranges. None block the sounds of my neighbors - loud voices, children screaming, dogs barking, etc.

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Pondera
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by Pondera » Fri Sep 21, 2018 5:33 am

Not to worry. Keep concentrating. Once you reach “Neither Perception nor Non-Perception” all of that white noise will seem as if a blessing!!! You’ll understand ear faculty, ear object (noise) and what those really are in the absence of ear-consciousness!!! Pure, unbroken reality. An Overlord who does not hesitate during creation and creates a future that is perfect without so much as any glimpse of a plan ahead - a future which he can see that isn’t made - that can arrive in the present having been modified in the past. A plenum of reality! Keep concentrating!!! Concentrate on what, you say? Concentrate on consciousness ...
Four simple meditations on earth, water, fire, and wind - leading to tranquility and pleasure, equanimity and peacehttps://drive.google.com/file/d/1G3qI6G ... sp=sharing

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Sam Vara
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by Sam Vara » Fri Sep 21, 2018 6:24 am

philosopher wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:04 am
I fully believe that it is possible to perceive sound in this way, but I am unsure about how to achieve this in practical terms. I think I need more detailed guidance. Is this a perception to adopt - i.e. just sound (perhaps use a noting technique? "sound, sound")?
Yes, I'm sorry if it sounds like a counsel of perfection, or even glib. I also struggle with noise during formal sitting, so I don't have an easy answer. You could try a "noting" technique, depending on your overall practice. What has had some success for me is focusing on a meditation object which is really clear and obvious, like counting. My teacher recommended "forcing" the mind to stick with the object, but I know this approach is unpopular with many meditators.

Ultimately, the more you meditate, the more the mind gets used to sticking with the object, and the more sounds can be ignored. Many of the monks I know say that monasteries are Thailand are very noisy places, so their example has been an inspiration to me in this matter. So I guess that cultivating faith/confidence will help as well.

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Pondera
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by Pondera » Fri Sep 21, 2018 7:12 am

Try meditating on your own skhandas. Notice how they “lean” on each other. Find the mark of ill within your clinging aggregates. Find the ill in all incoming sounds. In your perceptions. Meditate and separate your skhandas as far as you can. Then look outward for evidence of the skhandas in your environment. At the very least you will gain the ability to control electricity ;)
Four simple meditations on earth, water, fire, and wind - leading to tranquility and pleasure, equanimity and peacehttps://drive.google.com/file/d/1G3qI6G ... sp=sharing

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Volovsky
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by Volovsky » Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:03 am

philosopher wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:06 am
@Volovksy and @paul, I have tried many noise canceling headphones - including top of the line ones by Bose as well ones designed for shooting ranges. None block the sounds of my neighbors - loud voices, children screaming, dogs barking, etc.
Sad to hear. I also was struggling with noise a lot (although I don't know if it was as bad as you have it. It was 'general' noise - talking, knocking, walking by the neighbors). Eventually I have found a very quiet place. At the beginning I was very happy, but over time I noticed my meditation hadn't become significantly better. Since then I don't care about noise any more. My advice: find a quiet place and see if noise is actually such a big problem.

philosopher
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by philosopher » Sat Sep 22, 2018 2:24 am

Volovsky wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:03 am
philosopher wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:06 am
@Volovksy and @paul, I have tried many noise canceling headphones - including top of the line ones by Bose as well ones designed for shooting ranges. None block the sounds of my neighbors - loud voices, children screaming, dogs barking, etc.
Sad to hear. I also was struggling with noise a lot (although I don't know if it was as bad as you have it. It was 'general' noise - talking, knocking, walking by the neighbors). Eventually I have found a very quiet place. At the beginning I was very happy, but over time I noticed my meditation hadn't become significantly better. Since then I don't care about noise any more. My advice: find a quiet place and see if noise is actually such a big problem.
Thanks for sharing that experience. My meditation practice was much, much better before these current neighbors moved in, so I know that for me personally, at this stage, it does have a huge effect. :( If I wear earplugs all day it is better.

philosopher
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Re: Any recommended teachings, talks, or advice for dealing with noise?

Post by philosopher » Sat Sep 22, 2018 2:27 am

Sam Vara wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 6:24 am
philosopher wrote:
Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:04 am
I fully believe that it is possible to perceive sound in this way, but I am unsure about how to achieve this in practical terms. I think I need more detailed guidance. Is this a perception to adopt - i.e. just sound (perhaps use a noting technique? "sound, sound")?
Yes, I'm sorry if it sounds like a counsel of perfection, or even glib. I also struggle with noise during formal sitting, so I don't have an easy answer. You could try a "noting" technique, depending on your overall practice. What has had some success for me is focusing on a meditation object which is really clear and obvious, like counting. My teacher recommended "forcing" the mind to stick with the object, but I know this approach is unpopular with many meditators.

Ultimately, the more you meditate, the more the mind gets used to sticking with the object, and the more sounds can be ignored. Many of the monks I know say that monasteries are Thailand are very noisy places, so their example has been an inspiration to me in this matter. So I guess that cultivating faith/confidence will help as well.
No, not at all. I appreciate any and all advice I can get. I find it interesting that there are so many instructions available about how to deal with physical pain, but comparatively few, it seems, for dealing with noise. I have always admired that quote by Ajahn Chah and do believe strongly that it is possible for a mind that has been trained sufficiently to be as at peace in silence as in a very noisy situation, but I'm nowhere near there. I will try your approaches. And thank you for the encouragement and the example of the monks; your message has inspired me to keep trying.

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