Sad i want to attain jhanas but i have mental illnesses. Anyone else who have mental illness and practice meditation?

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Meditation, e.g. meditation postures, developing a regular sitting practice, skillfully relating to difficulties and hindrances, etc.
Pinetree
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Re: Sad i want to attain jhanas but i have mental illnesses. Anyone else who have mental illness and practice meditation

Post by Pinetree » Wed Jan 27, 2016 9:33 pm

Not sure if you read this thread about about thinking as a hindrance to meditation, there are some interesting points:

http://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=41&t=25347" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

But especially the next video, which I found quite interesting, which says something close to:

- a cause for a wandering mind is that we have spoiled our mind, and it got used to do what it wants, it became undisciplined

And the proposed solution is training the mind through renunciation - which means from time to time giving up the pleasures we are offering ourselves.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uUGHY6_HIp0" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
But when the mind thinking about not angry and not greedy things i don't feel anything, it is boring.
I remember a teacher saying that boredom is a type of anger. In my experience I would probably say frustration.

What you could try is doing metta before the meditation, with the meditation as an object for metta, maybe something like:

"May my meditation be peaceful, with ease and free of suffering".
(or concentration)

Not sure what is your object of meditation, if it's the breath, you could also say:
"May my breath be peaceful, relaxed"

dxm_dxm
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Re: Sad i want to attain jhanas but i have mental illnesses. Anyone else who have mental illness and practice meditation

Post by dxm_dxm » Wed Jan 27, 2016 9:41 pm

And the proposed solution is training the mind through renunciation - which means from time to time giving up the pleasures we are offering ourselves.
I should have heard this long time ago. Maybe I did but not pay too much attention. I can confirm that my refusal to give up too much of the pleasures is probably the main reason I am not able to keep a serious, every day meditation practice. I find it hard to do meditation when i could be indulging in pleasures however small. It's so simple to find an excuse or simply be ignorant. Thanks for posting this I'll try to pay more attention to lessening this tendency to indulge in pleasures. :anjali:

coreycook950
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Re: Sad i want to attain jhanas but i have mental illnesses. Anyone else who have mental illness and practice meditation

Post by coreycook950 » Sat Feb 13, 2016 6:28 pm

Hello Friend,

I have schizophrenia, PTSD, Asperger's, and anxiety also.
If you're not getting disability or SSI you should apply with an attorney.

As for meditation: I do dry insight meditation and don't think absorptions are really necessary.
In fact I recall reading that Ajahn Chah once stated that absorbtions weren't really necessary.

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manas
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Re: Sad i want to attain jhanas but i have mental illnesses. Anyone else who have mental illness and practice meditation

Post by manas » Tue Apr 05, 2016 4:27 am

Hi Lotus Flower,
I try to cultivate contentment, even a feeling of satisfaction, with simply knowing I'm on the Path and am making a daily effort. If you are following the five precepts wholeheartedly, and reading or listening to a Dhamma talk or sutta daily (or at least, regularly) - and reflecting on what you have read or heard - do you reaize how precious and rare it is, to even be doing that much? As compared with the entire human population, it's actually a pretty good place to be in. Appreciate the goodness that flows even just from that, learn to find a measure of gladness even just from that (I'm trying to atm). As for jhana, I think it can be harder for those of us with a lot of past trauma, or mental illness or depression, so please also cultivate metta for yourself daily, as well. Don't get down on yourself for 'not having attained jhana yet'. It's not a race, you know. It's more like cultivating a garden. It takes some cultivation before the seeds grow into plants, and the plants flower, then fruits come about. So for you (and persons like myself also), also cultivate the lovely quality of patience, and whatever measure of metta you can bring up for yourself as a being of integrity trying to honestly practice the Dhamma. Also, you might not have 'full' or 'deep' jhana as yet, but try to notice how you feel when there is even a measure of calm in the mind, tune it to that, and savour even that, and try to recall what mental / physical action you took to bring about that calm. That can give you a sense of achievement, even if it's not 'full' jhana as yet, any measure of mental calm is a good thing. Hope that helps. :anjali:
Knowing this body is like a clay jar,
securing this mind like a fort,
attack Mara with the spear of discernment,
then guard what's won without settling there,
without laying claim.

- Dhp 40

SarathW
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Re: Sad i want to attain jhanas but i have mental illnesses. Anyone else who have mental illness and practice meditation

Post by SarathW » Tue Apr 05, 2016 4:40 am

:goodpost: Manas
Observing five precepts and contemplating on Dhamma is a form of Vipassana Jhana.
The way I understand Vipassana Jhana is more fruitfull than the absorption Jhana.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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amtross
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Re: Sad i want to attain jhanas but i have mental illnesses. Anyone else who have mental illness and practice meditation

Post by amtross » Wed Apr 27, 2016 4:11 pm

If you haven't already, it may be helpful to look into types of diet and exercise that may ease some of your suffering. Specifically, make sure you're getting enough vitamin d (sun or supplement, best to test with bloodwork as some people have genetic polymorphisms that make it harder for them to absorb vitamin d) and magnesium (leafy greens).

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