torstai 14. helmikuuta 2013

Day 146: Hesitation, images and storytelling


Yesterday I read Lindsay's blog post MY WHOLE SYSTEM FREEZES BEFORE IT DOES ANYTHING! (lol) and today I've had a new realization based on it. She wrote about the hesitation that occurs every time before doing anything, and I saw today from morning onwards how this exact pattern plays out in me.

No, actually, this began last night already. Yesterday evening when I had just lain on my bed found a really comfortable position to fall asleep in, as I was simply focusing on my breathing and sensing my entire body, I noticed a fleeting physical sensation of arousal, which would have been a nice sensation in itself – but then my mind drew up a picture of me masturbating – and then created a desire to masturbate. I noticed this pattern right away and laughed at myself because it was somehow so obvious what was going on there even though I properly noticed this pattern for the first time: the mind associating and cross-referencing with all the signals and stimuli it receives / picks up, and with the first “ding dong!” as in finding the “right” association to hold on to looking up the exact behavioral pattern for that purpose. I noted this and fell asleep shortly.

In the morning I was walking to work and I heard footsteps behind me. They were slowly getting closer and I guessed the person wants to pass me by. As the person was next to me passing me by, I thought that “people never look at others when passing by on the street” and got an impulse to move myself contrary to this and look at the person passing me. But instead of me just doing it, I at first “froze” - I hesitated – and reflected upon what I had just thought and was about to do and “checked” whether it was OK or not – and only then did I actually turn my head and look at the passer-by.

At work I was mulling over some thoughts in my mind and as I was getting frustrated I tried to stop myself – and I saw an image of myself laughing at myself in stupid mind-jam situations like this – and then I laughed at myself as an attempt to clear my head – but then I cut that half-way because I realized this is a survival mechanism that comes up when my thoughts jam. This, too, started with a mental image.

And during the rest of the day, as I have been in an unusually good mood (as compared to the past few weeks), I have constantly had images of myself smiling and then acting accordingly and manifesting a smile – because the image of me smiling is so “happy” and “pretty” and “healthy” and fits the story I tell for myself about myself. “Today I am having a good day and I am smiling because I am this and this kind of a person and things feel nice and life is good” and blah blah, the usual narrative.

It is simply fascinating to see this at play, because as I see what my mind is doing (mind picks up something in reality – associates with something in my past – presents a behavioral pattern that “works”) it is so much easier to not participate in my patterns and to actually consider as myself what the preferred course of action would be.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe unquestioned the images my mind presents me as it associates every moment and every element in the physical reality with something in my past, not realizing that as I participate in these images by thinking “oh yes, that's right” I live according to the past and not according to what is actually HERE in this moment in this
breath at this exact point of time and space.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe and participate in the image of masturbation my mind offers me according to how it associates physical sensation with my past experiences, thinking “oh yes, this would feel good” as in “in the past there was an experience where this course of action felt good”, not realizing that in that moment I am not interacting with the physical by listening to what the actual sensations of my body are but instead imposing an expectation on myself within and as the mind that a certain course of action will produce a certain kind of an outcome (masturbation will produce a good feeling).

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to hesitate before acting as I fear my action will arouse a reaction in my environment, retreating from something I was already about to do as I reflect back on what I was about to do out of natural impulse by stepping into the mind through fear.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to disable myself from acting according to initial impulse by believing and thinking I need to “make sure” what I'm about to do is “OK”, not realizing that as this act of “making sure” happens by assessing my environment and the possible risks and dangers in it, it is actually an act of fear that limits me and usually also leads to a cycle of hesitation where I believe one fearful thought after another and end up doing nothing or acting through fear.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to act according to mind images of myself where I see myself to look like something preferable that “fits the story” I am telling for myself about myself, not realizing that living according to images I live as an image and not as myself as a human being in a physical reality, not taking into consideration what I am actually experiencing in the moment and moving as myself but assembling myself into a “pose” where I portray a certain kind of personality that makes the perfect lead for “the story of my life”.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe life is about “telling my story”, not realizing that as I do this as a narrative within my mind as words and images and by using myself as a flesh puppet in that story, I only live according to ideas, thoughts, perceptions, preconceived stories and beliefs, never stopping to actually look around me and assess the actual possibilities of a situation, which are infinite, instead of only considering those options that “fit the story” and “look/sound/seem/feel nice”.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe life is cyclic because I have learned that classic storytelling is about the dramatic arc of having a beginning, middle and end with suspense, climax and a resolution – not realizing that this structure does not apply to lived life but only to the stories we tell of it.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe I “should” be doing something because it would “fit” the story I am telling about myself according to the dramatic arc of storytelling, not realizing that the only beginning and end in my life are birth and death, and that even they are illusionary as I have existed before this physical life and will exist after it.

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not realize that in lived life there is no beginning nor end.

When and as I, within and as the mind, cross-reference and associate the physical reality with thoughts, images and memories and present a “fitting” course of action according to these associations – I stop, I breathe and I realize that by acting according to these thoughts, images and memories I only re-live the past by holding on to this survival mechanism of behavioral patterns that have “worked” in the past. I realize that when/as I participate in these thoughts, images and memories I am not living according to what is HERE but have already switched to auto-pilot where I cruise through life directed by the past instead of directing myself. I then re-assess the situation by stabilizing myself within and as breath, looking at that which is actually here and considering that which is best for all.

I commit myself to stop living according to the storyteller in my mind by no longer participating in the narrative suggestions this voice offers as words and images but instead stopping, stabilizing myself within/as breath, releasing the point and continuing with what I was doing.

4 kommenttia:

  1. Cool Emmi - thanks for sharing this as your writing has brought through a 'fresh' perspective and so further expanded on and supported my walk through this same point as well.

  2. LOL - Really enjoy your comic strip representing this point as well! :)