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September 16, 2017

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Sorry to hear this Brian. Good luck, good thoughts, and hope you feel better soon...

Is it possible your depression isn't just the health issue but your awareness of aging and that nobody escapes it even though you had hoped you would? It is one of those things we have to come to grips with and it can be depressing until that happens and understands old age is part of the cycle of life for us all. Another aspect to this is with summer coming to an end, a lot of people talk of feelings of coming darkness. It is a normal part of human life to have dark and light times-- just we enjoy the light more. Hope you get good results from talking to a professional.

Crying is very healthy. Men should do it more often. It releases some sort of chemical in the brain that changes how you see the world. Us women do it all the time, for good reason, it feels good when you are done. https://www.agingcare.com/Articles/reasons-why-crying-is-good-for-your-health-146022.htm

Hi Brian, I have suffered from depression for over 30 years despite heaps of RS meditation (inititated by
Charan Singh in 1979). Like you I didn't realise I was depressed. I just thought I was stressed and tired (I had a lot to be stressed and tired about back then too!) It wasn't until my wife described my behaviour to her doctor and she said "get him down here asap" that I realised I was depressed. Turns out it is genetic/physical and a SRI medication made me feel nornal for the first time in about 15 years. BTW, I was meditating a lot at the time and I used to experience a lot of bliss in meditation but would be just as depressed when I came out of it.

Now I am 59, have had to stop work as a high school science teacher due to cancer and tick bourne diseases I contracted about 5 years ago. Now I am having similar symptoms to you. Waves of tiredness come over me sometimes and I don't want to talk to anyone or do anything, just lie down and be in the consciousness or at least relax and observe the thoughts and feelings. I occassionally have crying spells too when things overwhelm me and I fall into feeling like everything I am is being taken away, and I am facing a brief and unpleasant future. My cancer is slow growing so I could die within 1 year or I may go on for another 20 depending on the sucess of treament. But imminent death is not the issue.

I have been through many spells of sickness so transforming my neurological processes that I feel like a different person, a much dimmer person that is not recognisable compared with prior internal states.

I worry about the effects of my depression and physical illness on my wife. She is very loving but worries about me. Also, there are things that have happened in the past that have resulted in situations with relatives and past loves that make me sad but I cannot hope to change in any meaningful way now. I do not regret anything. I do not blame myself for my past failures or take pride in my successes. I don't see how there can be any free will. I am an atheist (the result of experiencing of my own still empty consciousness as a result of RS meditation rather than light and sound and the Master inside) and I can't see any objective evidence for anything like a soul surviving death dispite what a couple of my RS friends who claim to go inside on a regular basis would have me believe. So I have no fear of death. But I do have a fear of the process of getting there! Pain and suffering are not fun.

I very much wanted to be able to go inside and experience those higher regions but I have come to the conculsion that such experiences are a result of rare genetics/brain chemistry and that they don't reflect an objective reality. Never the less, I feel heart broken on some level that RS has turned out to be BS for me.

I am not intellectually satisfied with the stillmind-emptyness-nonbeing state that I experience. It provides no answers to the why and wherefore of things. Anything I think about it is just subjective rumination. It is wonderful and blissful and profound sometimes but still provides no objective knowledge.

I have typed this rave in part as a reaching out from my place of depression to someone who seems to be in a similar place and also in the vague hope that it may make you feel a little less alone in what you are going through. Or, that you may find snippits interesting, that raise further questions, which I am only too happy to answer.

P.S. I did find a number of visits to a pyscotherapist very helpfull for a while about 12 years ago.

Alistair, I deeply appreciate your honest comment. It does indeed make me feel less alone. And thanks for being so upfront about your religious skepticism. Naturally I share your views. Occasionally I still reach out to the God and Guru I no longer believe in, asking them to make an appearance in my consciousness. Until that happens with undeniable clarity, like you I'm unable to believe in their existence.

Our atheism does have the downside of not providing us with the support that believers have. Considering pain and suffering to be God's will or the burning off of karma gives true believers some comfort. However, if comfort comes at the expense of reality, this is a questionable bargain. My attitude is that Hope and Reality have to be in balance. We need both, and there is plenty of room in a secular perspective for each of these precious attributes.

"Occasionally I still reach out to the God and Guru I no longer believe in, asking them to make an appearance in my consciousness." Ditto, although that hasn't happened to me for a while now. I have found the thing that gives me the greatest acceptance has been an understanding of evolution and genetics/inheritance. It's no bodies "fault" including mine that I am ill. There is no paying of karma, no "reason" for it or "divine plan or lesson" in it. It is just an event that is the result of genetics and environment. I don't ask "why me?" and I have never thought it was unfair that I got cancer etc. It's just nature ... hang around long enough and you'll die of something and there is a bloody good chance it will be cancer or heart attack or stroke. That thought that I am just like the birds in my yard, living out my life as best I can, curcumscribed by my evolutionary history, makes me feel part of the bigger whole which is nature on this planet. I think this is the secular equivalent of accepting all as "gods will". Everything is what it is because of everything that has gone before plus some randomness introduced at the level of the very small.

Do you still meditate do you think because you enjoy it or are you motivated still by some hope that the inner veil may be lifted and some kind of real transendent certainty will arrive before death does? I find myself still meditating as much as my health allows which is only about 30 mins a day. I do enjoy the peace and stillness of mind that comes but I am still secretly hoping that I will be able to have OOBES or some total loss of self or something along those lines. I am hoping that that kind of wishful thinking will go in the end. What's your thoughts on that? Krishna Murti once said "hope is the slayer of the real". I worry that the old RS mental habits actually stand in the way.

And lastly, I have met six people during my life who were able to leave the body in RS meditation pretty much at will. One of them was my ex-wife. I found none of them convincing mainly because I have seen none of the saintly qualities in them nor did they exhibit any real understanding of the obviously primary role of the consciousness in producing one's reality. They all seem(ed) totally distracted by their internal trips. A couple of them seemed to be totally mad! My ex-wife eventually stopped meditating having come to the conclusion that all the internal regions and shabd were projections of her mind. Another friend of mine complained that his spiritually evolved wife was really bossy and selfish! Another friend of mind who says he spends very little time in physical reality now I have observed to love to mind-fuck people, doesn't believe in climate change and rejects the idea of Darwinian evolution. I don't think these people were or are lying about their inner state but it has really made me wonder about the value of it. Have you had any encounters with these types and if so what was your impression?

I must say, think Rain may be on to something under the general heading...realization of getting older.... When you ask yourself 'what's it all about' ...after a lifetime of fun and joy and sadness and pains and embarrassments and giving and receiving love and and the incredible wonder of this physical world learning and growing ....and the answer comes up 'I don't know'. ....whoa.... Well isn't all 'this' and more exactly what life IS? Too obvious?

Ok then, there's this...I believe my spirit will soar once I am willing and able to drop this body which allows me to experience so much, but not too much. And 'no body' will also be experiential..or not. But at this point, what really does all that matter. YOU are undertaking this journey, no one else. If it includes an exploration of psychotherapy, good on. It's all grist for the mill someone beautiful said so clearly.

So be the best tired you can be, be the best ANYthing every moment. I have always enjoyed your writing, this post too!

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