About Me

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I have recovered from the disease of Alcoholism. I believe there is only one person really,.. everybody. And that peace of mind is everything. -So treat your neighbor as you would treat yourself, because your neighbor IS yourself. I think most of recovery is what I would call common sense, but that learning to be ordinary is a true gift very few people acquire. My ambition is to accept everything unflinchingly, with compassion, and therefore be intrinsically comfortable in my own skin, no matter what. I am comfortable being uncomfortable and am willing to go to any lengths to improve my life. I believe the Big Book was divinely inspired, and is extraordinarily powerful. Unfortunately AA's best kept secret a lot of the time. (In my opinion). I just try to do what works, no matter what it is.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

"Just because I think it, it doesn't mean it's true." Is that so? 'Some of us tried to hold on to our old ideas..'

"Just because I think it, it doesn't mean it's true" ~ Ajahn Amaro in Metta - It All BelongsA talk on November 17th, 2007 during the Thanksgiving Retreat. At 49mins and 44secs

Heres one I kind of do anyway but I liked hearing about on Ajahn Amaro's talk.
All thoughts are a bit dodgy to say the least.
Pretty unreliable.
Yet most of the time we do not question them, or their validity.
I find myself disbelieving most of what my head tells me. But its easy to get caught out and find myself just accepting the thought that comes into my head as if it were true.
Here are some of the ways I 'loosen' the unquestioned nature of what I find myself thinking if I feel the urge, and want to unsettle any mental ruts I happen to be in.
I just repeat any one of these statements after EVERY thought I find myself having.
Unsettling but very refreshing!

I would call this any one of these things:
Letting go of OLD ideas.
Not 'believing' what your head tells you.
Introducing uncertainty to thoughts that are taken on face value or taken for granted as being true
Undermining thoughts that are taken on face value
Undermining stubborn thoughts
Undermining stubborn 'tapes'

So some statements you could use are:
Is that so?
Are you SURE?
Thank you for sharing...(then just carry on with your day)
(More aggressive versions..)
Yeah right.
Thank you for sharing..now ...EFFF!! OFF!!!
Says who?
..Or any statement you prefer that has the same sort of effect..

I'm quite a nice person really
Is that so?
I'm such a useless student
Is that so?
I should be doing ........ Right now
Is that so?
I really fancy getting 'that' done later on
Is that so?
God 'so and so' is SO irritating!
Is that so?
I really don't want to have to make that trip later on this summer
Is that so?
I can't afford that
Is that so?
Wow that person is SO ! amazing. I am crap in comparison.
Is that so?
I'm such a lazy person
Is that so?
Etc etc..
..Basically WHATEVER thought comes into your head, answer it with 'Is that so?'
Scary (!) but worthwhile and very freeing..

P.S This exercise is NOT designed to give you permission to act destructively if former ideas of moral or ethical restraint have kept destructive urges at bay. I am working on the assumption that you already grasp the basic understanding that destructive acts are harmful to both yourself and others. (Just in case you thought otherwise..)
It is explained in more detail in the podcast.

I got this idea from Metta - It All Belongs
A talk given by Ajahn Amaro
on November 17th, 2007 during the Thanksgiving Retreat.
Have a nice Wednesday!


molly said...

my therapist used to tell me to challenge my thoughts with things like: "is there EVIDENCE to support that?" when i hear myself saying unhealthy things. i.e. when i hear the "GOD you are SO STUPID" thought - i am supposed to challenge it.. and realize that there is NO evidence (FACT) to support it. i may FEEL stupid sometimes (for sure!) but the feeling (or thought) doesn't make it so.

i believe it was one of Amaro's talks i listened to when he said "just b/c you feel quilty, doesn't mean you've done anything wrong" - i like that one but can't remember if that was him or not (see I AM stupid! - JUST KIDDING!!). just b/c i can't remember something, doesn't make me stupid i suppose :)

back to work and actually WORK now! i can get so off course.!

i soo enjoy u posts :) have a nice rest of our day today!

Syd said...

Sounds like a good approach. I'll try it. Too often I don't question what comes into my head but accept it for the truth--False Evidence Appears Real.