How to love myself?

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No_Mind
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby No_Mind » Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:16 pm

cappuccino wrote:Well don't you realize the self is fictional, and your concerns are fictional.


I have already replied to this and do not want to drive my point home .. but you would do well to contemplate upon this story --

Yamaoka Tesshu was one of the greatest swordsmen of his time and was a layman who had almost embraced true mastery in Zen. Yamaoka Tesshu, as a young student of Zen, visited one master after another. He called upon Dokuon of Shokoku.

Desiring to show his attainment, he said: “The mind, Buddha, and sentient beings, after all, do not exist. The true nature of phenomena is emptiness. There is no realization, no delusion, no sage, and no mediocrity. There is no giving and nothing to be received.”

Dokuon, who was smoking quietly, said nothing. Suddenly he whacked Yamaoka with his bamboo pipe. This made the youth quite angry.

“If nothing exists,” inquired Dokuon, “where did this anger come from?”



binocular wrote:It seems that you don't believe you deserve to be happy. Perhaps it could pay off to investigate how come you don't believe that you deserve to be happy. Perhaps you even believe you deserve to be miserable.

It also seems impossible to love others, but not love oneself, or to even hate oneself. Someone who doesn't love themselves cannot love others either.
Admiring others or appreciating others isn't the same as wishing them well. Admiring others can be confused for wishing them well.


Not impossible at all. I am complicated. I have very high self esteem (it shows in my posts does it not) .. but I have a fixed, strong belief that nothing good can happen to me .. sort of like I am a cursed person. Belief in nocebo is as real as belief in placebo.

Don't happy people commit suicide? Human mind is far more complex than one can imagine. Why can one not shun oneself but love others? Is it so difficult to believe?

befriend wrote:Do you enjoy your own company? Where there is joy there is love. If you can have fun by yourself by being observant and using your intellect for fun you can be joyful, i find this gives me self kindness.


I do enjoy my own company very much. But that is because not being an academic, I do not find people I will like to mix with and over years have come to accept solitude.

:namaste:
I know one thing: that I know nothing

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ryanM
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby ryanM » Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:29 pm

Hey No_Mind,

Maybe it'd be best to start off with what you see in yourself that is worth loving. What qualities do you see in yourself that are worth admiration? Already, you've mentioned you care for the well-being of others. That's at least a starting point to me. Having self-love will, I think, really help to add much breadth to your love/care/metta of others.

Kind regards,

Ryan
sabbe dhammā nālaṃ abhinivesāya

"nothing whatsoever should be clung to"

binocular
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby binocular » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:26 pm

No_Mind wrote:Not impossible at all. I am complicated. I have very high self esteem (it shows in my posts does it not) .. but I have a fixed, strong belief that nothing good can happen to me .. sort of like I am a cursed person. Belief in nocebo is as real as belief in placebo.

You mean you're something like an anti-hero? Or a bit like Raskolnikov from Dostoyevsky's "Crime and punishment" (not the aspect of him plotting to kill the old woman, but his general attitude toward himself and the world)?
Or a bit like Don Quixote? Or like a protagonist in Kafka's writings?

Don't happy people commit suicide? Human mind is far more complex than one can imagine. Why can one not shun oneself but love others? Is it so difficult to believe?

Well, it sounds like a rather idealistic, artistic kind of character found mostly only in literature.
Or, in crude terms, a martyr without a cause.

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No_Mind
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby No_Mind » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:39 pm

ryanM wrote:Hey No_Mind,

Maybe it'd be best to start off with what you see in yourself that is worth loving. What qualities do you see in yourself that are worth admiration? Already, you've mentioned you care for the well-being of others. That's at least a starting point to me. Having self-love will, I think, really help to add much breadth to your love/care/metta of others.

Kind regards,

Ryan


What qualities do I see in myself. Hmm .. would make a list tomorrow (I mean in my diary not here!!)


binocular wrote:
No_Mind wrote:Not impossible at all. I am complicated. I have very high self esteem (it shows in my posts does it not) .. but I have a fixed, strong belief that nothing good can happen to me .. sort of like I am a cursed person. Belief in nocebo is as real as belief in placebo.

You mean you're something like an anti-hero? Or a bit like Raskolnikov from Dostoyevsky's "Crime and punishment" (not the aspect of him plotting to kill the old woman, but his general attitude toward himself and the world)?
Or a bit like Don Quixote? Or like a protagonist in Kafka's writings?

Don't happy people commit suicide? Human mind is far more complex than one can imagine. Why can one not shun oneself but love others? Is it so difficult to believe?

Well, it sounds like a rather idealistic, artistic kind of character found mostly only in literature.
Or, in crude terms, a martyr without a cause.


Nothing quite so spectacular. I am unwilling to draw parallels from classical literature because that would indicate narcissism. On the more prosaic level of popular culture there are many characters with whom I identify myself .. most of all Fox Mulder from tv series The X-Files back in 1990s .. supremely aloof and cynical but enthusiastic. On a good day intelligent, perceptive and insightful. On a bad day reclusive, self absorbed, cynical, antagonistic, obsessed, paranoid and susceptible to insanity.

:namaste:
I know one thing: that I know nothing

binocular
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby binocular » Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:29 pm

It is possible that a person' maintains a high self-esteem by strictly limiting their involvement with the real world, especially with people. Getting more involved could, at least at first, crush that high self-esteem, as well as love for others.
And yet, getting more involved with the world might be the only way to come to love oneself, because it is only through such involvement that one develops skills, learns of one's actual place in the world.


A poem by Rainer Maria Rilke that is fitting for this:


- - -

Solang du Selbstgeworfnes fängst, ist alles
Geschicklichkeit und läßlicher Gewinn -;
erst wenn du plötzlich Fänger wirst des Balles,
den eine ewige Mit-Spielerin
dir zuwarf, deiner Mitte, in genau
gekonntem Schwung, in einem jener Bögen
aus Gottes großem Brücken-Bau:
erst dann ist Fangen-Können ein Vermögen, -
nicht deines, einer Welt. Und wenn du gar
zurückzuwerfen Kraft und Mut besäßest,
nein, wunderbarer: Mut und Kraft vergäßest
und schon geworfen hättest..... (wie das Jahr
die Vögel wirft, die Wandervogelschwärme,
die eine ältre einer jungen Wärme
hinüberschleudert über Meere -) erst
in diesem Wagnis spielst du gültig mit.
Erleichterst dir den Wurf nicht mehr; erschwerst
dir ihn nicht mehr. Aus deinen Händen tritt
das Meteor und rast in seine Räume...


http://www.rilke.de/gedichte/solang.htm
- - -

As long as you catch self-thrown things
it’s all dexterity and venial gain-;
only when suddenly you hold that ball
which she, one of the eternal players,
has tossed to you, to your center, with
a precisely judged throw, in one of those arcs
that exist in God’s great bridge system:
only then is catching a proficiency,-
not yours, a world’s. And if then you had
the strength and courage to return the throw-
no, more wonderful – forgot strength and courage
and had thrown already….(the way the year
throws the birds, those migrating bird swarms,
which an older to a younger warmth sends
catapulting across oceans-) only in
that venture would you truly play the game.
No longer making the toss easy; no longer making
it hard. Out of your hands the meteor
would launch itself and flame into its spaces…


https://margihealing.wordpress.com/2012 ... wn-things/

- - -

As long as one is catching only things that one has thrown oneself, everything is easy and easily gained. Catching things that other people or nature throw is much harder, and really puts one to the test.

binocular
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby binocular » Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:42 pm

No_Mind wrote:Nothing quite so spectacular. I am unwilling to draw parallels from classical literature because that would indicate narcissism. On the more prosaic level of popular culture there are many characters with whom I identify myself .. most of all Fox Mulder from tv series The X-Files back in 1990s .. supremely aloof and cynical but enthusiastic. On a good day intelligent, perceptive and insightful. On a bad day reclusive, self absorbed, cynical, antagonistic, obsessed, paranoid and susceptible to insanity.

And if we stick with TV and film characters, in that category are also John Reese from "Person of Interest", Leon from Besson's "The Professional", Nathan Algren from "Last Samurai", even Edward Cullen from "Twilight," to name a few notable examples. They all have high self-esteem, don't love themselves, care greatly about (some) others.

However, they are also very capable, have many skills and practical qualities (and many are handsome). They ain't no Akaky Akakievich.
So before identifying with them or trying to emulate their emotional state and outlook on the world, it would be good to check for consistency.

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cappuccino
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby cappuccino » Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:57 pm

Identifying as a character?
Any identifying is the same, including the main identity/character.

A self isn't found for any role.
The standard description of nibbana after death is,
"All that is sensed, not being relished, will grow cold right here."

jackson
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby jackson » Sat Apr 22, 2017 1:05 am

Hi No Mind,
There are a few things I have found beneficial for cheering for oneself in life, as opposed to the self destructive tendencies some of us can fall into. Keeping the precepts is tremendously important, and reflecting on one's moments of kindness and generosity can uplift the mind. Also one thing that I found really helpful was developing plenty of compassion for the suffering of other beings and wishing for their welfare. It got to the point where the only person I didn't have true compassion for was myself until one day I contemplated the guilt I had carried for years and asked "If this were someone else in the exact same situation what would I wish for them?", and realized that I'd want them to stop with the self-flagellation and be happy and kind. Anyway, just turning things around and viewing yourself from a different perspective can be of great help.
Best wishes,
:smile:
"The heart of the path is quite easy. There’s no need to explain anything at length. Let go of love and hate and let things be. That’s all that I do in my own practice." - Ajahn Chah

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No_Mind
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby No_Mind » Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:27 am

binocular wrote:And if we stick with TV and film characters, in that category are also John Reese from "Person of Interest", Leon from Besson's "The Professional", Nathan Algren from "Last Samurai", even Edward Cullen from "Twilight," to name a few notable examples. They all have high self-esteem, don't love themselves, care greatly about (some) others.

However, they are also very capable, have many skills and practical qualities (and many are handsome). They ain't no Akaky Akakievich.
So before identifying with them or trying to emulate their emotional state and outlook on the world, it would be good to check for consistency.


This is wandering into territory about me instead of 'How to love myself' .. something I am loathe to do for obvious reasons. You presuppose I do not have many "skills and practical qualities" and that I am not handsome (among members of Bengali ethnicity) .. an irksome conclusion which I am willing to overlook to protect my privacy.

Not to get into an argument but Mulder was not a soldier like Algren, Reese or a hitman like Leon. He was a FBI investigator who was passionate about his work. Neither I nor Mulder are killers.

But no more discussing me please. Just discuss my question.

jackson wrote:Hi No Mind,
There are a few things I have found beneficial for cheering for oneself in life, as opposed to the self destructive tendencies some of us can fall into. Keeping the precepts is tremendously important, and reflecting on one's moments of kindness and generosity can uplift the mind. Also one thing that I found really helpful was developing plenty of compassion for the suffering of other beings and wishing for their welfare. It got to the point where the only person I didn't have true compassion for was myself until one day I contemplated the guilt I had carried for years and asked "If this were someone else in the exact same situation what would I wish for them?", and realized that I'd want them to stop with the self-flagellation and be happy and kind. Anyway, just turning things around and viewing yourself from a different perspective can be of great help.
Best wishes,
:smile:


Exactly .. so I must view myself as a person 'out there' and find compassion for that person .. good suggestion. Thank you :smile:

:namaste:
I know one thing: that I know nothing

binocular
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby binocular » Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:00 am

No_Mind wrote:This is wandering into territory about me instead of 'How to love myself' .. something I am loathe to do for obvious reasons. You presuppose I do not have many "skills and practical qualities" and that I am not handsome (among members of Bengali ethnicity) .. an irksome conclusion which I am willing to overlook to protect my privacy.

Not to get into an argument but Mulder was not a soldier like Algren, Reese or a hitman like Leon. He was a FBI investigator who was passionate about his work. Neither I nor Mulder are killers.

Them being soldiers or killers is not the point here. We're talking about a particular type of character. It can be found in literature, as already mentioned, and those characters aren't necessarily killers either. But you said you don't want those comparisons; also, those characters don't make for exciting tv material so they are less well known.
You're not Mulder either.

I'm sure you have many skills and practical qualities. It's not about measuring up to sme static standard, but to a dynamic, relative one that meets the circumstances that the individual person is actually living in. One person, with one set of skills and practical qualities can do well in one set of circumstances and feel good about themselves. Another person, or in different circumstances can have the same or comparable set of skills and practical qualities, but they are not enough anymore for that person to feel good about themselves. So that second person or in the second set of circumstances needs to up their game in order to be able to feel good about themselves.

But no more discussing me please. Just discuss my question.

The thread question is "How to love myself?" Note the "myself"?

Fortunately or unfortunately, that makes it personal, for you, and we cannot discuss this in some general, abstract manner regardless of you and whatever is specific for you.

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No_Mind
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby No_Mind » Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:09 am

binocular wrote:Them being soldiers or killers is not the point here. We're talking about a particular type of character. It can be found in literature, as already ...............


Note to self --

First step in metta for self .. do not engage in pointless arguments bordering on sealioning. Love yourself enough to not take up such meaningless burden.

:namaste:
I know one thing: that I know nothing

binocular
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby binocular » Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:20 am

To quote daverupa from another forum:

I think it's useful to primarily discuss a given motivation to practice, rather than one or another contemplative method, at first. The chosen goal(s) is what guides the effort, and being clear on this clarifies a lot of discussion; it's a more essential place to begin than I first thought, in fact.

Now, defining the problem is in fact what the First Truth does; so, it's the obvious place to begin a discussion among Buddhists, but 'dukkha' and 'dukkhanirodha' can get different interpretations. Divergent methods immediately appear; people disagree about practice in subtle ways & not-so-subtle ways. Everyone takes the fabric they can, and stitches it together as best they can - but they're doing it for a reason, and this is more important to understand in each individual case.

Here, I would wonder why "letting go" sits in one or another set of practices for someone; this is the sort of thing that's so much easier to talk about in person, you know...? ...but, the question for me revolves around why "letting go" - however understood - is seen as valuable. I wonder if people can put this into their own words... I'll be thinking on it...

https://www.buddhismwithoutboundaries.c ... t=daverupa


The same goes for the practice of "loving yourself".
Why does someone want to "love themselves"? What do they hope to accomplish with "loving themselves"?

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cappuccino
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby cappuccino » Thu May 11, 2017 1:20 am

Metta should be directed at you. Life is difficult
The standard description of nibbana after death is,
"All that is sensed, not being relished, will grow cold right here."

perkele
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Re: How to love myself?

Postby perkele » Wed May 17, 2017 12:04 am

Hello No_Mind,

I don't know if you are still reading here or maybe at least get a notification.

(I hope so! I very much liked your contributions in general. But then you left in a huff, feeling somehow generally insulted apparently, because of some other topic, I guess. [I had already on many occasions wanted to criticize you for being too thin-skinned and prideful. "Typically Indian", I had thought many times, feeling reminded of some quarrels that I had had with my boss (an Indian), where I had insulted him just by some simple casual (and not entirely positive, but not even meant as criticism directed at him) remarks.
I think there are some incisive cultural differences between Indians (and probably related cultures) and "westerners" (which probably make up the majority of the people here) and their behaviour in a crowd, and how they relate as individuals to the crowd, and how much they may feel bothered by what some other individuals say in the crowd. This is probably a very stark generalization, but my impression is that in a "crowd" environment westerners tend to have less propensity for feeling bothered individually by "what people say". But that is another topic maybe.])
(I could have written this in a PM, but that is an extra level of complication and interaction that I don't want to engage in at this point. May I be forgiven, and I think it is still somewhat on-topic as well. But now I'm going on into a long rambling monologue about myself, which I just had the thought might be vaguely related to this topic here and I should share. And I have own questions in relation to it. If it is deemed off-topic overall, may the admins feel free to move it to another thread. But I actually think it fits here.)


Actually, some weeks ago, I had written a lenghty reply to this topic, telling from my own experience, but then, as the thread went on felt it to be off-topic (as happens oh so often).

Anyway, just now, another thought (actually a question) occurred to me, and I thought it would fit into this topic. (As a question also directed at anyone else who reads this: I am interested in your answers.)

My question is: How do you talk to yourself? The question came up after having read somebody else's retold and written down "conversation with himself" (in his own thoughts). And I noticed that he addressed himself as "you" (in the second person).

Of course, I guess, that is pretty normal to do that. I do that as well from time to time. But only occasionally. And it has to do with this topic in so far as the habit of how (and how often! and how seriously!) I talk to myself appears to me to be a strong indicator for my current sense of self-respect.

As I mentioned, I had earlier written a lenghty reply to this thread in which I told about my "history" of my relationship to myself. And the gist of it was: Earlier in my life, I usually liked myself very much. I had a good feeling about myself, because I tended to keep my mind clean. Good virtues: honesty, integrity, humility, patience, endurance of painful and unpleasent situations... equity and fairness, goodwill, harmlessness and general friendliness, cultivation of fearlessness... I had such qualities, such values held in high regard, and cultivated and kept in constant fostering care in my mind. I always looked at my mind and its good qualities and strenghts and kept good care of them, because they were my source of happiness. And I talked to myself about it... a lot! It was my life's primary concern and top priority occupation, to keep my mind good and clean and virtuous at all times, my whole attitude at all times and all the tiny thoughts throughout the day - I kept them in check! (And as per this sutta, I had a very clear and tranquil mind - so much space to observe with quiet absorbed interest just how this consciousness flows, and how it works, and a good amount of joy and fascination with [and well-deserved pride in] it.) I had a very high sense of self-respect and a sense for "nobility", honor, integrity, self-reliance, very much concerned with cultivating and upholding a "noble, honorable" character. And seeing an admiring what is noble and admirable in others as well: Humility, patience, contentedness, honesty... such good qualities, when observed in others, I also had a lot of joy from, an overflowing happy feeling from such admiration of others' good qualities. (I had a lot of good examples around me when I was a teenager. I had good classmates in school, a really good community. And I also had a good amount of pride in that, because it was also for a good part a result of my own good attitude and mental behaviour and care, and my influence through own acts of care and goodwill that this group, this kind of "family" around me with its good sense of community and friendship and general all-around mutual respect had grown into the state that it was. I could see how much my own influence was in this. [My earlier years had been more shitty in regars of good friends and community. But my character was good, and my good karma had ripened somehow, and I could even trace it back, how this and that all came together in a fitting way.] That was my secondary focus, noticing, admiring, rejoycing in the good qualities of others (besides my own mind, which was my primary focus), and talking about it with myself! But my primary concern was talking with myself regarding my own development, or what I had to do, or to amend and improve my mindstate, my attitude, my intentions, my morality, talking to myself very seriously, continually, throughout the day.
And as I just happened to notice: Back in those days, back in these good old times, I used to address myself in my mind in the second person all the time: Encouraging myself, scoldng myself, criticizing, reminding, keeping thoughts and intentions in check, also at times maybe consoling myself (but not too much; very very rarely at most; I took much pride in being patient with what is painful and unpleasent, be it mentally or bodily; in fact I could always enjoy this again, developing this kind of strength). My own attitude towards myself was one of serious concern for my own well-being, but primarily for my conscience, because I knew this as my source for happiness. And it worked very well. And I could rely on myself, and I could talk to myself seriously, addressing myself in the second person, as if there was another person in my head whom I could address in this way.

I am sure you know similar mechanisms. I just wanted to point out the little habit of talking to oneself in the second person, because it seems somehow important to me. Because, my story goes on:

The only problem I had with myself was my pride. Sometimes I just felt too good about myself. I don't know if it is because we have a very self-deprecating kind of culture, we are taught not to get elated and prideful about ourselves, and also I was proud of, ironically, my general sense of humility. I kept scolding myself when I became too proud about whatever good quality of myself. (And it was good to do so! This was mostly of concern when I was alone and it was disturbing my concentration when I became too elated with feeling good about myself.)

So, (because of that, but also for some other strange reasons) one day, I came up with a plan: I wanted to "kill myself". The story about this is a bit silly and complicated, but I was very serious about it. It was extraordinarily frightening, totally abhorring such a thought. I thought in all seriousness: Why can I not kill myself? Because somehow I was convinced in my mind, that this problem was "myself". I just had to get to the very bottom of it and cut it away somehow, how and where it comes up in the mind. I want to cut it at its very base. But the circumstances are a bit silly and really complicated to describe and try to trace back the thoughts and intentions. The thing is, I really wanted to eliminate this sense of self. The most blunt and direct way of attacking the problem was to kill myself physically. The exercise was simply to entertain this thought very very seriously, really trying to get through with it: Why can I not do it? I was so abhorred, so absolutely frightened, with every movement, every step and intentional movement in the proceeding. Of course I would not know what comes afterwards. There was just so much resistance. I could not go through with this silly idea. Why do I have no full control over my intentions? I thought about such things and thought I had found a perhaps suitable external method to analyze it all to the end by trying to get through with this. So that maybe finally I would find some kind of "enlightenment" in the process. It was a very quirky kind of paradoxical thinking. I cannot really explain it.
Anyway, I could not kill myself, physically. I just could not do it. So I decided: I will kill myself mentally. I will first of all thoroughly destroy any kind of self-respect that I have, any reason to feel good about myself: my good and admirable qualities that I always take so minute care of. My sense of honor, of integrity, my conscience. I will act in ways that I find so despicable that maybe I will actually end up killing myself, feeling so thoroughly disgusted by myself. I wanted to make myself feel so thoroughly disgusted by myself, so mentally tormented, that maybe in the end I will not see anymore any other way than to actually wipe out my existence. Oh, it was so abhorring to think those dark and evil thoughts. It was so horrifying, just devising this plan. It was thought as some kind of trick: Maybe I can do it this way. Trick myself into it more from the outside, externally. I will try to force myself in this direction, in a way somehow, trip myself up in some crazy twisted way, that there will be no easy way of turning back. I will assassinate my own character.
I do not want to describe here what I did exactly in order to accomplish this. I did not really hurt anyone else directly, but of course there was a lot of collateral damage over time. It was all more self-destructive behaviour. But I succeeded in feeling so utterly and lastingly ashamed, embarrassed and disgusted with myself, that I (and not only I!) suffered from it horribly for many many years.

Anyway: The thing that I noticed just now (and noticed earlier already on several occasions) is that I apparently have lost my habit of talking to myself seriously, confidently in the process of this strange kind of "self-assassination". Because I just did not have enough respect for myself anymore. I had to start to rely more on others, and what they seem to think and how they see the world, and how they may see me, etc. I started reading a lot, from philosophers and all, after that time, trying to see how they understand the world. I had lost my own way of seeing directly, or the confidence, and the cleanliness and clarity in it. I came upon the teachings of the Buddha in the Pali canon in the course of this (while reading Nietzsche, just for the thrill of immersing myself into such a mostly abhorring, but in parts also [positively] impressive mindset; at some point, he mentioned the Buddha, making some dismissive remark, but was somehow not able to be as dismissive and condescending as usually, which intrigued me), finding finally some sort of reliable exterior guidance in it (and immediate faith, that this was the true way, shown by a [or maybe the] great sage who truly found enlightenment), but also so much horror in thinking through all the consequences of these strange twists in my life. But I had distrust of my own thoughts and intentions. From the three governing principles mentioned in the suttas, the first one, the "self" was severely damaged.

Only in recent years, through the help of a certain kalyanamitta, who somehow gave a good and trustworthy almost all-around counterpart of the other two "governing principles" could I somehow gain enough confidence again to rely on myself, my own conscience, my own thoughts, my own sense of judgment, sufficiently again, that I am not horribly afraid and insecure of my own future and mental development for most of the time. I do talk to myself more again, encouraging me, scolding me, spurring myself on, directing myself confidently in better directions. It is good to talk to oneself in the second person, having oneself as a reliable friend, working on being reliable towards oneself. That is the foundation of goodwill for oneself. Serious concern, and earnest "discussion" with oneself, even only in tiny fractured sentences, about what is good, and what is bad, what is honorable, what is dishonorable, and so on... the trust and confidence in oneself to have such internal dialogues on a constant or regular basis. And if we have lost that somehow, we need an external environment of others to rely on and learn from again, and maybe their validation, and also need to come to trust in the validity of their validations. (Of course that cannot happen anywhere. It seems to me one needs the other two "governing principles" for the first (the self) to become really confidently reliant, and then has thereby (by having become self-reliant and reliable to oneself), I think, automatically the first prerequisite in the instructions in the Karaniyamettasutta fulfilled (which I think is actually the same as metta for oneself, by keeping onself, the self, in check):
cjmacie in another thread wrote:.
For that matter, the Karaniya Sutta itself outlines the whole path -- sila - samadhi - panna...

(Overview)
"This is to be done by one skilled in aims who wants to break through to the state of peace:"

(Sila)
"Be capable, upright, & straightforward, ... Do not do the slightest thing that the wise would later censure."

/.../


I actually have the impression that you are self-reliable enough, though, and don't know if you would even bother to come back here to reply, (certainly I don't expect it), @No_Mind, but am just putting this all out here in your thread as some food for thought.

For anyone else, I still have the question: How do you talk to yourself? Do you address yourself in the second person? Do you do this a lot? I have noticed, as I mentioned, that I lost this good habit for the most part. I find myself more talking about myself in the first person (in my mind), usually employed for the purpose of talking myself out of trouble or defending myself and my pride. Which is something I would have rather rarely done "back in those days" when I was a good and honourable self-reliant person. I talk to myself in the second person when I have some serious (and mostly wholesome, I reckon) concerns and need to do things, need to instruct myself, direct myself to accomplish something good, ward off something bad, which then is often urgent, so my level of concern is heightened. In my youth I almost constantly and normally had this sense of "urgency", albeit in a mostly calm and composed, habituated manner: It was all about keeping my character good and honourable, my thoughts clean and pure, my intentions good. I was almost all the time routinely (and generally joyfully) concerned with it. After my attempted "self-assassination" I lost confidence in myself, became much more lax in regards of being honorable and good, "cleanly" on the inside. (Another aspect of this, which just now comes to my attention is the fact that, "back in those days", I always wanted to share my mind with others. I never had much to talk to others and usually enjoyed quietude among the crowds. But I always had this wish: "Oh, if others could just look into my mind, see through my eyes, have this experience. It is so beautiful here." I had nothing to hide. I would have loved to be able to share my mind completely with others. But later on, after this "self-assassination", and still continuing to this day: There is a lot of ugly stuff that has crept into my mental stream and will not go away easily. I would not like to invite anyone here into my mind to come and have a look on any day. [But it is getting better actually.])
Suffering (and appropriate reflection on and guidance by the Dhamma) has to hit hard now more usually to get to whip myself up and out of this dejected state of mind, lacking self-respect. Lacking self-respect, I do not talk to myself with serious concern anymore as much as I did when I was young and innocent. And instead I write a long text like this here, seeking external thoughts, ideas, perhaps some sort of validation, and maybe guidance on that matter. This is a very poor substitute for my trustworthy and reliable internal dialogue with myself that I habitually had in my youth (interspersed with good stretches of blissful and contented silence, which I also have not much of, if any, nowadays, anymore).

So, to repeat: How do you all talk to yourself? Do you address yourself in the second person? How have your manners of internal dialogue developed or been influenced throughout your life and perhaps some extraordinary and incisive events? I am very interested in your answers to those questions, thinking they stand in close enough relation with this topic here. (But if it is deemed more appropriate, I'd also happily settle for pursuing them in another thread.)

:anjali:


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