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Most efficient way to relieve anxiety through meditation?

A place to share and discuss the practice of Zen Buddhism without teachers. Debates about whether practicing without teachers is possible or desirable are not appropriate here, nor are criticisms of Zen Buddhist practice with teachers.
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A place to share and discuss the practice of Zen Buddhism without teachers. Debates about whether practising without teachers is possible or desirable are not appropriate here, nor are criticisms of Zen Buddhist practice with teachers.

Re: Most efficient way to relieve anxiety through meditation

Postby Jojo on Tue Apr 15, 2014 8:22 pm

thank you for this.
I highlighted some parts which are most important, in my opinion.
The "completely relax"-part might take some practice :lol2:

Michaeljc wrote:The guidelines on this throughout history are too consistent to disregard. It is a posture that maintains itself without strain. While there is the odd teacher outside of the norm most are remarkably similar in what they recommend. By lucky coincidence, it is also the posture that is most conducive to the influence of Zazen. I don't think that we need to get too hung up over what we do with the legs. The spinal column is what is important.

Many months back I got absolutely ridiculed by a teacher on another forum for saying that it is similar to standing and also the correct posture when one is riding dressage on a horse. Lo and behold very recently on this forum Guo Gu comes out with exactly the same statement. Stand up in rigid attention as though a soldier on parade then completely relax downwards. There it is - the Zazen posture.

Full or half lotus support the correct spinal posture. That is their only function. If we are doing something less demanding we have to check our spinal posture more often and if need be adjust. But, more demanding means a little more discomfort. A reasonable degree of discomfort can be beneficial. It settles the mind. We should not try to avoid it completely.

First and foremost trust in yourself. Embrace everything. Teachers are just signposts.

Just as a matter of interest: correct riding posture requires a saddle with the correct 'set' i.e. the cushion at the right height and angle.

Why is this posture so important in riding? – Because it is the only position in which the rider can feel and influence the horse through the seat. When the horse is going perfectly, most of the control is through the seat i.e. being ‘grounded’.

m
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Re: Most efficient way to relieve anxiety through meditation

Postby Basaltic on Sat Aug 29, 2015 10:29 am

Michaeljc wrote:
WHAT IS correct posture?


The guidelines on this throughout history are too consistent to disregard. It is a posture that maintains itself without strain. While there is the odd teacher outside of the norm most are remarkably similar in what they recommend. By lucky coincidence, it is also the posture that is most conducive to the influence of Zazen. I don't think that we need to get too hung up over what we do with the legs. The spinal column is what is important.

Many months back I got absolutely ridiculed by a teacher on another forum for saying that it is similar to standing and also the correct posture when one is riding dressage on a horse. Lo and behold very recently on this forum Guo Gu comes out with exactly the same statement. Stand up in rigid attention as though a soldier on parade then completely relax downwards. There it is - the Zazen posture.

Full or half lotus support the correct spinal posture. That is their only function. If we are doing something less demanding we have to check our spinal posture more often and if need be adjust. But, more demanding means a little more discomfort. A reasonable degree of discomfort can be beneficial. It settles the mind. We should not try to avoid it completely.

First and foremost trust in yourself. Embrace everything. Teachers are just signposts.

Just as a matter of interest: correct riding posture requires a saddle with the correct 'set' i.e. the cushion at the right height and angle.

Why is this posture so important in riding? – Because it is the only position in which the rider can feel and influence the horse through the seat. When the horse is going perfectly, most of the control is through the seat i.e. being ‘grounded’.

m


This is good advice on the correct position for zazen. I will bear this in mind when I practise. This is a useful thread.
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Re: Most efficient way to relieve anxiety through meditation

Postby Coffee Bean on Sun Aug 30, 2015 2:39 am

I think it's just a matter of incorporating meditative techniques with everyday life. Likely people intuitively understands what anxiety entails and the effects the attacks brings about, so by treating the experiences like one does during Zazen sessions for instance, it can lessen the intensity through acknowelegmrnt and allowing it to pass and dissipate each time attacks occur. It's helped greatly in dealing with my own issues
as I've struggled with the problem pretty much my entire life so far. .
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Re: Most efficient way to relieve anxiety through meditation

Postby Michaeljc on Sun Aug 30, 2015 2:43 am

so by treating the experiences like one does during Zazen sessions for instance, it can lessen the intensity through acknowledgment and allowing it to pass and dissipate each time attacks occur. It's helped greatly in dealing with my own issues


I have found the same technique - to immerse into the emotion. I even seek out the issues that are bothering me and go from there :heya:
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Re: Most efficient way to relieve anxiety through meditation

Postby fukasetsu on Tue Sep 01, 2015 1:00 pm

First up understand the nature of the desire the relieve anything in the first place.
Mijn Oude Vriend uit de woestijn begrijpt geen Nederlands. <3
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Re: Most efficient way to relieve anxiety through meditation

Postby desert_woodworker on Tue Sep 01, 2015 5:11 pm

Yes, I think the desire to relieve anxiety shows Wisdom, and is really the onset of, or opening toward Bodhicitta. Or, is a seed of awakening. One has an intimation that things are awry (dukkha), and feels that there is a possibility of restoring a natural "rightness", and opening a larger, uncramped, unconstrained life, of fearlessness, born of genuine intimacy.

Kudos!, to anyone who feels this! The Buddha's Noble Eight-fold Path is available. Step Eight is "Right Meditation (Samadhi)".

"Good" would be to find a meditation teacher, and a sangha, to learn the practices correctly and to practice with.

--Joe
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Re: Most efficient way to relieve anxiety through meditation

Postby another_being on Tue Sep 01, 2015 6:31 pm

chisox100 wrote:I have always been a very anxious person. Not bad enough to justify getting medication but just bad enough it effects me on a day to day basis. I have done body scan meditations and they can help me a little with reducing anxiety. I am curious what everyone would reccomend as the best form of mediation to work on as an anxiety reliever?


Hi chisox100, welcome. I also had a life of anxiety and can relate to your situation. There is a lot of good advice here. I'll offer my own perspective. There was a minor breakthrough for me when I was in a very anxious state, but then looked back at the thoughts I had been thinking just before noticing how anxious I was. They were all gloom and doom thoughts. It hit me that I had been really making myself sick with the thoughts and worry that had been running through my mind. There was a ray of sunshine in that realization. :) The same with panic attacks -- getting caught up in a whirlwind of worrisome thoughts.

Counting your breaths can be a good way get centered. If your thoughts are running away with you, I might also recommend silently reciting one of Thich Nhat Hahn's gathas. Something as simple as, "Breathing in, I know I am breathing in. Breathing out, I know I am breathing out." This will occupy your thoughts enough to not make enough room for those worries and anxious thoughts. Practice. Exercise. Avoid caffeine. Get in sunlight. Transformation will come naturally with practice. :peace:
"Some people think they are enlightened, some people think they are not enlightened." -- Denko
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