Attachment To Physical Comfort

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Veer-Zinda
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Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by Veer-Zinda » Wed Mar 07, 2018 6:44 am

I have become more acutely aware of the fact that my willingness to deal with physical discomfort is very limited. Other than having sinusitis right now, I'm fortunate to have good health in general. That being said, I enjoy my food too much and lead too sedentary a lifestyle, so there is room for improvement.

I feel strong aversion to doing anything that will be physically uncomfortable, even if it is beneficial to me.

I would like to start ridding myself of these attachments and aversions, and wondered if any of you have made progress in this area and how you went about it.

:namaste:
"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself — and you are the easiest person to fool." - Richard Feynman

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Sam Vara
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:45 am

One approach is to consider how this attachment to physical comfort will lead to greater discomfort in the future. If one is too sedentary, then one's health may well suffer. Although one may be fortunate in having an easy and comfortable time now, things will change and it is best to be prepared to weather such changes.

It's more subtle than simply putting oneself in the path of obvious discomfort in order to merely "toughen up". More like giving oneself the opportunity to experience how the mind responds to unpleasant sensations, (in addition to the pleasant ones) and learning how to differentiate between the sensation and one's reaction to it. A good way to do this is to undertake a path which one knows to be wholesome and beneficial to oneself and to others, and sticking to it regardless of the hedonic consequences. Fasting can be good for this, in that most people tend to benefit from it. The best way, I think, is to make a strong determination to keep the precepts, or otherwise behave in a beneficial way.

This way, one uses one's attachment to physical comfort to examine itself. "I'm doing this practice in order to avoid suffering in the future....What's that all about...?"

Dinsdale
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by Dinsdale » Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:26 am

Veer-Zinda wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 6:44 am
I would like to start ridding myself of these attachments and aversions, and wondered if any of you have made progress in this area and how you went about it.
Physical discomfort is inevitable sooner or later. I don't see it as trying to get rid of things, more understanding what they really are, how they arise and cease, and why I react in the way that I do.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

binocular
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by binocular » Wed Mar 07, 2018 9:51 am

Veer-Zinda wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 6:44 am
I feel strong aversion to doing anything that will be physically uncomfortable, even if it is beneficial to me.

I would like to start ridding myself of these attachments and aversions, and wondered if any of you have made progress in this area and how you went about it.
I can tell you what really didn't work -- and I mean really didn't work and backfired tremendously: haphazard, random efforts to toughen myself up. Namely, I had at some point come to the conviction that I need to toughen up, physically. But I had made no plan how to go about that, didn't think things through, and just tried to use every opportunity to toughen up. For example, when carrying home a heavy bag of groceries, I insisted, on the spot, on carrying everything in one hand, even though I had an extra bag with me and could put half of the weight in each and carry one not so heavy bag per arm. Or on the way home, I remembered I need to toughen up, so I'd step off the bus one station earlier to walk home, without any consideration for what I was wearing that day or how heavy my bag was or at what time I was supposed to be home that day etc.. Or I didn't feel like making myself breakfast, and impulsively said to myself that going without breakfast is just part of my efforts to toughen up.

This was very stressful, it wore me out badly and made me more prone to easily give in to unskilfull desires for eating junkfood and watching tv, among other things.

The activities with which I chose to toughen up seem to be good ones per se and the emergencies I have thus re-created were realistic. But the context and the timing were bad, as far as training goes. Training should take place in a controlled or semi-controlled environment, with (mental) preparation before and reflection afterwards. Otherwise, it's not really training, but just haphazard masochism. And that's useless.

So my plan is to train with those same activities, but to do so more consciously, with more mental praparation. As in deciding a few days in advance, "This Thursday, I'm going to carry a heavy bag of groceries home in one hand only." This is, after all meant to be just training, not creating another actual emergency.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

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Nwad
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by Nwad » Sat Mar 10, 2018 5:56 pm

You should try to go gradualy.

denise
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by denise » Sat Mar 10, 2018 9:17 pm

perhaps just standing....the chair kills..(some worse than others)....then walking...start one day a week... :console:

binocular
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by binocular » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:19 am

denise wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 9:17 pm
the chair kills..(some worse than others)....
Or try a stability cushion. I'm finding it quite demanding to sit on one.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

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Aloka
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by Aloka » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:49 am

Veer-Zinda wrote:
Wed Mar 07, 2018 6:44 am
I have become more acutely aware of the fact that my willingness to deal with physical discomfort is very limited. Other than having sinusitis right now, I'm fortunate to have good health in general. That being said, I enjoy my food too much and lead too sedentary a lifestyle, so there is room for improvement.

I feel strong aversion to doing anything that will be physically uncomfortable, even if it is beneficial to me.

I would like to start ridding myself of these attachments and aversions, and wondered if any of you have made progress in this area and how you went about it.

:namaste:

Try a beginner's Tai Chi class. Its very gentle exercise and I always felt very relaxed and invigorated and ready to do some meditation after attending a local class once weekly. Unfortunately there aren't any classes in my area at the moment - but I'm hoping that's going to change soon.


:anjali:

paul
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by paul » Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:01 pm

I recommend you see this as a study of cause and effect, which is the mundane form of right view. By observing the long term effects of outward-going physical activity the practitioner overcomes the self which is driving the inward-directed need for comfort, and which is an illusory, constructed entity.

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Osaka
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by Osaka » Sat Jul 07, 2018 10:17 pm

I've noticed that on days I do nothing but browse the internet or play games by the times evening comes I feel terrible both physically and mentally. It really makes a difference to take the time to do 30 min of exercise here and there, go take a walk, do a meditation session etc. because it clears up the mind, brings back concentration and mindfulness and makes oneself feel much better. I don't know if you can relate to that? Knowing that one will feel bad by the end of the day if one doesn't do any physical activity is a good motivation. :anjali:

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salayatananirodha
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Re: Attachment To Physical Comfort

Post by salayatananirodha » Sun Jul 08, 2018 2:09 am

I was reading this gem last night:

And again, monks, a monk
having eaten as much as his belly will hold,
lives intent on the ease of bed,
on the ease of lying down,
on the ease of slumber.

Whatever monk, having eaten as much as his belly will hold,
lives intent on the ease of bed,
on the ease of lying down,
on the ease of slumber,
his mind does not incline to ardour,
to continual application,
to perseverance,
to striving.

This is the fourth mental bondage
that comes to be not rooted out
by him whose mind does not incline to ardour,
to continual application,
to perseverance,
to striving.

- MN 16
(http://obo.genaud.net/dhamma-vinaya/pts ... rn.pts.htm)

My advice is keep uposatha, no holds barred. If you successfully keep or earnestly strive to keep the eight precepts that roughly once a week, it will become more of a habit. This isn't too much to ask and is recommended by the buddha for laity. And see the drawbacks in sense pleasures, just observe what you're doing. Household life is confining, a dusty path. You're set up to fail when trying to behave like an ascetic. The eightfold noble path is a very gradual, very steep slope, with a large drop-off at the end. You may not feel as if your efforts pay off, but they most assuredly do. Keep good friends, be it online or in person.
16. 'In what has the world originated?' — so said the Yakkha Hemavata, — 'with what is the world intimate? by what is the world afflicted, after having grasped at what?' (167)

17. 'In six the world has originated, O Hemavata,' — so said Bhagavat, — 'with six it is intimate, by six the world is afflicted, after having grasped at six.' (168)

- Hemavatasutta


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https://www.ancient-buddhist-texts.net/index.htm
http://thaiforestwisdom.org/canonical-texts/
http://seeingthroughthenet.net/
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