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Book Study?


finding my way
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Hey, how did I get to be a Senior Member? By shooting my mouth off a lot?:)

Well, back to this Coping Header, we've got a good start. I really like the song lists; I only wish there was an audio for this site so we could hear them!

What about books? Is anyone interested in doing a book study, something on coping that is available widely from libraries or used book stores? We could read and discuss the wisdom found.

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That sounds like a great idea. Might I suggest the book, "Mind over Mood" by Dennis Greenberger, Ph.D; and Christine A. Padesky, Ph.D? It's a workbook and is a coping book.

A look at part of the table of contents:

ch 1 Understanding your problems

ch 2 it's the thought that counts

ch 3 identifying and rating moods

ch 4 situations, moods, and thoughts

ch 5 automatic thoghts

ch 6 where is the evidence

ch 7 alternative or balanced thinking

ch 8 experiments and action plans

ch 9 assumptions and core beliefs

ch 10 understanding depression

ch 11 understanding anxiety

ch 12 understanding anger, guilt, and shame

I think that instead of teaching coping skills in the hospitals, using self help books is terrific, and also they ought to provide seminars and classes on coping skills which would be for less money to the consumer than a hospital. The hospital ought to be about talking about your problems and solutions. I went to IOP and the therapist simply talked the entire time and wasn't a discussion. And it was expensive!

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Paula,

There is information online for meditation. Here is the link:

http://buddhism.kalachakranet.org/Meditations/basic_meditation.html#0

The only problem is, it's easier to do if there is an instructor instead of trying to learn the how-to techniques on our own. I was actually thinking of looking into a DVD and there is a meditation class offered in my hometown....I may look into that as well. It just sounds like paradise to be able to escape my mind, so I am going to seriously apply this....it's worth a try!

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A couple of days ago, I ordered Dr. Greenberger's book....I am waiting for it to be delivered. I think learning coping skills are the most valuable tools when can have.....if we could learn appropriate coping....we would be able to accept what we cannot change and focus on what we can.....just like that Serenity Prayer tells us....and we could concentrate on the NOW! Wow, what a concept!

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Guest ASchwartz

Okay, so the answer to your question is.......I don't know:D

Why not ask Mark, he is sure to know the difference.

I like the direction all of you are going in: Meditation is terrific and while I do not know the workbook that was mentioned I am certain that it is good. Letl me know how it goes, if that is ok.

Allan:)

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So far as I can tell, junior member is what you are called when the account is new, and you become a senior member based on the number of posts you make, and not the time your account has been activated. It's about participation.

For those interested in meditation, this wise counsel podcast interview with Shinzen Young is worth a listen. Mr. Young also has an online meditation class website where you can (for a small fee I understand) participate in regular classes. People I respect have a very good impression of Young as a teacher.

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Mark, this is a really cool site! Thank you!

Hey, what do people think about this? Click on the link for the website above in Mark's post, then click on "readings".

This would be free and available to all if people are interested. Later, if someone wanted to pay & do the phone class they could on their own. I could be wrong, but it looks like the free stuff is enough to get us started.

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  • 1 month later...

This sounds like a great idea. I would say I am interested but I am still hung up on the last book I tried to read: Anxiety, Phobias and Panic by Reneau Peurifoy. I get distracted easily when reading so it takes me a while to finish. But, please let us know how this is going for you guys and what you think of the selected book!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi everyone, Mark has provided us with a link to a podcast and then a website. What I would like to do is open an opportunity for people to learn together some basic concepts about meditation since so many have expressed a desire to learn how to better manage their anxiety. No one is an expert on Buddhism here, but Shinzen is, and we can see what we think about what he has to say. My goal is to keep it simple but still learn something.

To start, here is the link to a podcast interview with Shinzen Young:

podcast for us to start with

Here are some points for us to focus on:

What is the relationship of Sensory clarity to pain?

Vipassana is the original discovery of the Buddha. What is it?

Describe the trap of “Limited identity,” and how do we get out of that trap?

He then talks about other things, which may be of interest to you (or not), then toward the end of the interview gets back to the topic of mental health, and gives 3 important headings that we can explore as they relate to us and what we are doing in therapy:

Concentration power

Sensory clarity

Equanimity

I would say don't try to understand it all. Let's just see what we can get out of it :) You can respond in any way that is meaningful to you.

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What is the relationship of Sensory clarity to pain?

You can have great pain (including emotional pain) but suffer very little through the training of sensory clarity.

Vipassana is the original discovery of the Buddha. What is it?

Teasing apart the strands of experience. Divide and conquer. Break a complex system into its components and you will have released its unilateral grip on you.

Describe the trap of “Limited identity,” and how do we get out of that trap?

We get stuck when we identify ourselves with the experiences we’re having.

The mindfulness of keeping track of the sensory strands that produce the experience frees you from identifying with it.

Shinzen Young: “when you can keep track of your mental images, your internal conversations and the emotional type sensations in your body, when those are all vipassana, when they are all seen distinctly, then what you have is mental images, internal talk and emotional type sensations, you do not have a limited identity in a suffering self.

On the other hand when you lose track of them, which is a normal state for most people, they don't just add together, they crisscross, they multiply together and they produce a kind of poison that traps your identity and limits you in time and space.

So if you want to become free from that limited identity, what the Buddha discovered is, all you have to do is keep track of the sensory strengths and they won't multiply together into an exponential, overwhelm, they will just add together with linear manageability, you might say.

That's a mouthful, I mean to really understand what I just said is about equivalent to really understanding E=MC2, I mean you can say it in a couple of seconds but you really tease out the information packed in this short notation, you know, takes a little bit of time but anyway the original discovery of Buddhism was this sort of tracking of the elements of 'I am' ness.

Yeah, now I described it in the imperialistic language of divide and conquer but it could also be described in a more politically correct way as untangle and be free.”

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi Finding,

In addition, I want to suggest, in a humble way, that we try some short and easy meditation, just so we can begin to experience what it is like to do it. What do you and others think about this??

Allan:)

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:)Hi Allan, hi paula!

yeah, the Shinzen Young study is going to be complex because it is a condensation of nearly all of Buddhism.

However, to answer your request, there is a very simple and profound meditation practice that has helped me. It wouldn't work for everyone, nothing really does that, but I'll post it in case anyone wants to try it. It is the practice of tonglen

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi,

Well, that is great and thank you, Finding, for your prompt response.

Now, what I hope is that people will try this or other meditation methods and talk about how it feels. Not just how it feels good, but problems people may be having with it and what success people are having with it.

My experiences with meditation have all been very positive. I find it really helpful.

Allan :)

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I can see how meditation can be a valuable tool to learn. I haven’t had much success with it myself. When I try to allow myself to “just be” my mind goes to such a negative place that I feel I can’t bear it. I think this relates to my other problems of always looking for a way to distract myself from the negative thoughts. Maybe if I get better I will be able to use it in the future.

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi Lie_low,

The idea is to use meditation now to help your feel better rather than waiting to feel better before you use it. You do not take aspirin after a fever is over, you use it to reduce a fever.

The idea is not to get away from your thoughts during meditation but to just allow anything that enters your head to float through without struggling. It is not possible to do mediation wrong. There is no right or wrong, there is just "being." Let your thoughts go, watch them, let them float. Keep your eyes closed, sit upright, buttocks firm on a chair, breathe deeply at first and focus on your breathing. Remind yourself to breath, we start to breath shallow without realizing it. Read John Kabbat-Zinn's book, Everywhere you go, there you are

He does a wonderful job of describing meditation. You can get it at your library or at any book store. It is in paper back and is very popular.

Allan

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Does anyone want to keep going with learning about Buddhist meditation with Shinzen Young?

A next step would be to listen to another interview, this one between Shinzen and Stephanie Nash. To make it easier, we could break it up into 5 sections (Focus In, Focus on Rest, Focus on Out, Focus on Change, Focus on Loving Kindness), with just a few minutes of the interview to listen to at a time.

For part one, Focus In, go here

click on the Readings & Audio tab and "Shinzen talks about the 5 ways" is at the top

go to “Click to Listen” and click on Windows Media Audio or MP3

forward to minute “13” and listen to minute “20” (approximately)

There's a great worksheet/summary for Focus In here. Interesting stuff!!

Edited by finding my way
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