Friday, June 23, 2017

Using a Microscope When a Magnifying Glass Is Sufficient

by John Boodhansingh of Zero Mindfulness

A man began having pulsing eye pain on a daily basis. He tried to resolve it in a few different ways on his own but to no avail.

On going for help, he told the doctor that the pain comes every time he drinks coffee. The doctor asked him, “Do you mix in cream and sugar?” “Yes, in fact, I do,” said the man. The doctor then asked, “And do you leave the spoon in?” The man said, “Yes. How did you guess?” The doctor replied, “Sir, it seems to me that every time you take a sip of coffee you poke yourself in the eye with the spoon.”

Learn From My Mistakes

In my ignorance I brought upon myself a tragic amount of pain and suffering.

Incidentally, the very things I was ignorant of were the things immediately before me.

Through this hell myself, I would like to help others avert similar miseries where possible. I thus share with you two personal experiences and a perception shifting suggestion.

The World’s Most Vital Choice

In the first experience, I had a decision to make: Choose “A” or “B.” Both options were equally enticing, but both would run different paths to different outcomes. A or B? A or B? This hounded me constantly, for weeks.

All the while, I did self-inquiry and journaling in an effort to make sense of things. I also tried listening to intuition.

But while these methods played their roles (for whatever they were worth), I continued to experience great inner conflict due to the yet unresolved feelingless, all-my-thoughts-are-true over-intellectualism that I’d spent the majority of my life reinforcing.

A or B? A or B? Regularly, intuition/higher guidance would come. Even more regularly, ego-mind would point to anything remotely relatable and subtly claim it as “very meaningful guidance.” Unbalanced, I’d become overwhelmed by rationalizations and fears which upended any real guidance.

Then, perhaps around the two-month mark, just after a moment of decision-overwhelm craziness, I saw a cat in the alley behind my house. I thought maybe the cat had a message for me, so I looked up the cat animal totem page at The message I walked away with was that I must step back from the situation and look objectively.

And so I did. What I came to realize is two-fold.

Firstly, my approach to the whole situation was wrong.

For so long I’d been trying to make sense of many different but seemingly related data points that in total equaled great confusion. I kept feeding this confusion by putting loads of energy into it as if all the inputs were right and I was merely unable to figure out the correct message. More troublesome was me trying to figure things out and thinking, as the days went on and I hadn’t made a decision, that maybe the “right” path had changed, perhaps multiple times.

Secondly, the questions I was seeking clarity on and then fretting over we’re errant.

These question were along the lines of, What decision am I supposed to be making? and, What decision is intuition guiding me toward? Too much thinking and not enough feeling had driven me to ask such questions under the previously unnoticed assumptions/beliefs/fears that:
  1. I had to choose A or B,
  2. there was only one appropriate choice, and
  3. if I didn’t make the choice correctly then I’d be punished, failed, criticized, and so on.
These two realizations came to a realization-choice point. Thought I in a frustrated a-ha moment:

Fuck it all. It doesn’t fucking matter. The point is that I just need to make a fucking decision and let life play out how it plays out.

And quick as the snap of a finger the mental-emotional fiasco disappeared.

I made a decision. The results we’re unexpected yet I am happy with them.

When “Health” Is More Like “Hellth”

This second experience pertains to adequate sustenance.

For the vast majority of my life I’ve had loads of physical, mental, and emotional issues; countless persistent ones like allergies, weak joints, poor circulation, off and on depression, self-sabotage, and so on.

Then four years ago I became outrageously sick with an illness based around dietary woes. Having neither an income nor health insurance and with minimum financial support otherwise, I had to work nearly everything out myself.

In a bit of an understatement, I had a lot of problems. Sets of symptoms (usually major flare-ups of the life-long persistent issues) would come and go and come and go seemingly endlessly. I’d research like crazy, listen to intuition, try this thing, that thing, and 115 other things. Yet, no matter what I’d try, nothing would work. Or something would work for a few days but, in the instances I didn’t self-sabotage (a different story altogether), I’d repeatedly see that my move would help one thing but negatively affect another. Feeling like a “diet test dummy,” I’d tried “everything” for about two and a half years but to no gain.

Then one day it came to me. Then one day I realized why I’d tried “everything” but not everything: I’m undereating, and I’ve been undereating since at least 11 years old when my growth really began accelerating. I’ve never consistently given myself adequate nourishment and about one-third to one-half of that “nourishment” has been junk food.

To make matters worse, during much of the sickness, I’d inadvertently cut my caloric intake down, sometimes drastically. But I’d never noticed (beyond dramatic weight loss I’d attributed as a hyper-thyroid symptom) because, not only was my body so stressed out that I couldn’t think or feel straight, but I was so used to feeling hungry that I’d not realized it was abnormal to feel hungry so often!

Wrecking my body as I did, healing is no speedy process. However, I’m seeing that eating enough and eating in a way my body requires is the endgame for seemingly every chronic trouble I’ve ever had.

The Point Is…

If you’re trying to figure something out that’s distressing you, maybe you all you need to do is alter your perspective a little bit. Maybe you’re assuming/believing/fearing that it’s one thing but it’s really something else.

Perhaps you’re asking the wrong questions, so the answers you’re getting (if any) seem only to add to the confusion. Or, even if you’re asking the right questions, perhaps you’re over-thinking your way to a conclusion—“paralysis by analysis” as some would say.

Also, although undiscussed here, it could be that certain sources from which you attain your answers are the same sources that, deliberately or unknowingly, are perpetuating your difficulty. An example of this would be repeatedly looking to the same religion for the answers to life’s toughest questions, always being dissatisfied by them, but neither checking in with a different religion nor seeking within for personal answers.

Maybe what you need to grasp the truth of your situation is a magnifying glass rather than a microscope—or maybe nothing more than an objective look with the naked eyes themselves.

If your situations are anything like mine at their foundation, it may well be that your manner of living itself is already providing you the needed answers to the right questions, which you may or may not yet have asked—this probably being true considering that outer life is a mirror of the inner.

Step back and see. It may be that you’ve become so used to what is right in front of you that you don’t even notice that the answers you seek have been around you for years, if not decades.

Step back and see before life drives you so batshit miserable that you’re practically forced to ask the questions.

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