Buddhist solution to anxiety

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No_Mind
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Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by No_Mind » Sat Mar 03, 2018 4:28 am

Is there a way that Buddhism and Buddhist meditation can help us with anxiety?

Example -

John is 50. John's wife has heart ailment. He needs to spend $150,000 out of pocket which he does not have. John takes a loan against his mortgaged house (I believe that is called a second mortgage) but worries about not being able to contribute enough towards kid's college fund since he will be paying of lot of debt. He is also worried what will happen if he is one day laid off or there is a recession like in 2008 etc.

John is anxious and worries a lot.

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No_Mind
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by No_Mind » Sat Mar 03, 2018 4:29 am

I have never been able to watch past first ten minutes of this video .. though I have tried a dozen times.

Ajahn Sona says .. there are no anxious thoughts but you feel anxiety while you are thinking thoughts (I may have misunderstood him) .. what does it mean?



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paul
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by paul » Sat Mar 03, 2018 5:53 am

Reduction in anxiety is proportional to developing non-attachment. That involves understanding in practice that samsara is dukkha and taking refuge in the Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha. The dhamma is a universal law and anxiety is the inevitable consequence of not following it; it's a signal from the body and mind of not being on the path.

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No_Mind
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by No_Mind » Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:16 am

paul wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 5:53 am
Reduction in anxiety is proportional to developing non-attachment. That means understanding that samsara is dukkha and taking refuge in the Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha, in practice. The dhamma is a universal law and anxiety is the inevitable consequence of not following it; it's a signal from the body and mind of not being on the path.
Quite so.

But you cannot ask John to be non-attached to his precarious financial condition. He will act out of stimuli arising from his life and that stimuli will produce in him worry/anxiety/sadness/fear/anger.

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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by binocular » Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:33 am

No_Mind wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:16 am
But you cannot ask John to be non-attached to his precarious financial condition. He will act out of stimuli arising from his life and that stimuli will produce in him worry/anxiety/sadness/fear/anger.
It's not possible to solve other people's personal problems.

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No_Mind
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by No_Mind » Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:43 am

binocular wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:33 am
No_Mind wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:16 am
But you cannot ask John to be non-attached to his precarious financial condition. He will act out of stimuli arising from his life and that stimuli will produce in him worry/anxiety/sadness/fear/anger.
It's not possible to solve other people's personal problems.
You misunderstand my query.

If John was a Catholic and went to a padre the padre would ask him to pray.

If John was a Musilm and went to an Imam or maulvi the Imam/maulvi would ask him to pray.

If John was a Buddhist .. what should John do ..

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binocular
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by binocular » Sat Mar 03, 2018 7:02 am

No_Mind wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:43 am
You misunderstand my query.
I'm addressing the mode of your query.
If John was a Catholic and went to a padre the padre would ask him to pray.
If John was a Musilm and went to an Imam or maulvi the Imam/maulvi would ask him to pray.

If John was a Buddhist .. what should John do ..
Go talk to a monk, for example. And stop externalizing his personal problems.

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robertk
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by robertk » Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:09 am

1. If the thinking about problem x doesn't arise will there be the accompanying anxiety (no ).
2. Can you stop thinking ( no).

Ohhhh.



but 2 is demonstrating the anattaness of thinking. It is not your/my thinking. It is just thinking.
See that and thinking becomes like the weather- sometimes sunny, sometimes rainy - nothing to be too perturbed about.

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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by No_Mind » Sat Mar 03, 2018 11:55 am

robertk wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:09 am
but 2 is demonstrating the anattaness of thinking. It is not your/my thinking. It is just thinking.
I would be really glad if you can expand that a bit or provide me a sutta or article or commentary of some sort to understand it better.

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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by Dinsdale » Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:26 pm

No_Mind wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 4:28 am
Is there a way that Buddhism and Buddhist meditation can help us with anxiety?
I have found that mindfulness is important, recognising these states when they arise, also seeing that they are transient and conditional.

Generally I have also found that developing tranquillity and insight is helpful. Tranquillity has a settling and calming effect on the mind, while insight helps in understanding the causes and consequences of anxiety. There are different types of anxiety of course.
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by befriend » Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:37 pm

I used to have paralyzing anxiety the more good things I did mentally verbally and physically this decreases your anxiety good karma decreases bad karma.
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by Sam Vara » Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:45 pm

Dinsdale wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:26 pm
No_Mind wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 4:28 am
Is there a way that Buddhism and Buddhist meditation can help us with anxiety?
I have found that mindfulness is important, recognising these states when they arise, also seeing that they are transient and conditional.

Generally I have also found that developing tranquillity and insight is helpful. Tranquillity has a settling and calming effect on the mind, while insight helps in understanding the causes and consequences of anxiety. There are different types of anxiety of course.
Good point. Most of the responses so far have focused upon "seeing through" the conditions, and regarding them in a different way. But in addition to this, John should try anapanasati. Not only might he become calmer, but a level of tranquillity might be required for him to even address these states without reacting badly.

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robertk
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by robertk » Sat Mar 03, 2018 5:54 pm

No_Mind wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 11:55 am
robertk wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:09 am
but 2 is demonstrating the anattaness of thinking. It is not your/my thinking. It is just thinking.
I would be really glad if you can expand that a bit or provide me a sutta or article or commentary of some sort to understand it better.

:namaste:
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .nymo.html
"Bhikkhus, consciousness is not self. Were consciousness self, then this consciousness would not lead to affliction, and one could have it of consciousness: 'Let my consciousness be thus, let my consciousness be not thus.' And since consciousness is not-self, so it leads to affliction, and none can have it of consciousness: 'Let my consciousness be thus, let my consciousness be not thus
And it repeats for all khandhas. Thinking comes with feeling and consciousness and sanna and sankhara and none of it is under anyone's control: Fortunately- due to the Buddha - this can become clear and the usual (mis)perception ( vipallasa) can be gradually uprooted . So the more the completely uncontrollable and conditioned and not-self nature of thinking (and other elements) becomes apparent the more ones view is aligned with the real nature of the "world" -I.e. anicca, dukkha and Anatta.
And this brings with it all kinds of benefits here and now - the lessening of anxiety is one. But more importantly the 37 bodhipakkiyadhammas are also developing...
The path is starting to coalesce .

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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by binocular » Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:18 pm

robertk wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:09 am
1. If the thinking about problem x doesn't arise will there be the accompanying anxiety (no ).
2. Can you stop thinking ( no).

Ohhhh.
but 2 is demonstrating the anattaness of thinking. It is not your/my thinking. It is just thinking.
See that and thinking becomes like the weather- sometimes sunny, sometimes rainy - nothing to be too perturbed about.
If an ordinary person not trained in virtue takes this approach, they end up in a state of anomie, a nihilist, confused, disturbed. Or else, become very good at pretending that all is well when it in fact isn't.

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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by binocular » Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:21 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:45 pm
Good point. Most of the responses so far have focused upon "seeing through" the conditions, and regarding them in a different way. But in addition to this, John should try anapanasati. Not only might he become calmer, but a level of tranquillity might be required for him to even address these states without reacting badly.
And before that, John should train in virtue.

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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by Sam Vara » Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:32 pm

binocular wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:21 pm
Sam Vara wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:45 pm
Good point. Most of the responses so far have focused upon "seeing through" the conditions, and regarding them in a different way. But in addition to this, John should try anapanasati. Not only might he become calmer, but a level of tranquillity might be required for him to even address these states without reacting badly.
And before that, John should train in virtue.
:thumbsup:

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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by rightviewftw » Sat Mar 03, 2018 6:37 pm

No_Mind wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 4:28 am
Is there a way that Buddhism and Buddhist meditation can help us with anxiety?

Example -

John is 50. John's wife has heart ailment. He needs to spend $150,000 out of pocket which he does not have. John takes a loan against his mortgaged house (I believe that is called a second mortgage) but worries about not being able to contribute enough towards kid's college fund since he will be paying of lot of debt. He is also worried what will happen if he is one day laid off or there is a recession like in 2008 etc.

John is anxious and worries a lot.

:namaste:
the four foundations of mindfulness, the four right kinds of striving, the four bases for spiritual power, the five faculties, the five powers, the seven enlightenment factors, the Noble Eightfold Path
How to Destroy any addiction - Ven. Yuttadhammo Bhikkhu
How to Meditate: Vipassana Satipatthana Mahasi
Медитация Сатипаттхана Випассана
How To Develop Factors & Perceptions
Tyranny of Words - An Introduction to General Semantics
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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by santa100 » Sat Mar 03, 2018 7:03 pm

No_Mind wrote:If John was a Catholic and went to a padre the padre would ask him to pray.

If John was a Musilm and went to an Imam or maulvi the Imam/maulvi would ask him to pray.

If John was a Buddhist .. what should John do ..
He should also pray... and do a few more things as suggested in the great posts above. Beside the usual benefits of cultivating insight, anapanasati, mindfulness, etc. there's an often neglected but quite obvious and practical benefit: keeping a cool head, an absolute vital prerequisite for effective problem solving. Simply recognizing this fact would already put John in the right direction and uses his mind to assess the situation and fix it. Brainstorming various possible approaches: doing partial incremental payments to avoid taking an extra loan; have the kids apply for scholarships and go to 2-year Community colleges while working part time at their college for extra cash; get extra income by doing multiple side jobs beside the main job, which should provide medical insurance and other types of insurances, etc. Since the situation is unique to him, he himself must come up with creative and flexible strategies to fix it. And he'd better remember that anxiety is one of the biggest hindrances to effective problem solving. Improvise, adapt, and overcome is the way to go.

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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by Dhammarakkhito » Mon Mar 05, 2018 7:01 am

attend to the perception of relaxation
"Just as the ocean has a single taste — that of salt — in the same way, this Dhamma-Vinaya has a single taste: that of release."
— Ud 5.5

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Re: Buddhist solution to anxiety

Post by binocular » Mon Mar 05, 2018 11:48 am

No_Mind wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 4:28 am
Is there a way that Buddhism and Buddhist meditation can help us with anxiety?
An essay on the topic of anxiety by Bkikkhuu Bodhi.

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