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  • #115395
    John
    Participant

    So here we go, another sad tale. From the age of 4 I realised how cruel adults can be, was bullied by a teacher at school who for some reason took a great dislike to me, had a strict powerful dad who used to beat me and my sister, got to junior school and was bullied for being tall, went to secondary school and for some reason I became a very weird person who enjoyed playing games with people, discovered drugs and drink, resented my bullying father even more who cheated on my mum when he was age 40 with a 16 year old girl, who was always violent and abusive to my mum, who has always been a lovely person, and he still treats her badly. Parents split up during this time and got back together for the sake of me and my sister. Oh yes my sister was born with a disfigurement and was mercilessly teased at school by children and so called adults alike, I even was ashamed that she was my sister. I discovered porn at age 14 (found in my dad’s cupboard), this gave me a very twisted warped view of sex, lost my friends at school because I was so weird, so had no friends, went to college, still had no friends, forgot to mention that from age 11 onwards I kept telling my dad I wanted to die, because I really did, but he kept telling me ‘life is for living’, joined military at 18, soon realised that I was socially unskilled and abnormal, but made friends and went out a lot drinking and clubbing, had lots of casual sex, then started to get bullied at work, which sent me into my first bout of depression, got over that, went to another job, then sent to Germany where I drank very excessively, constantly socialising, prostitutes, then I was beaten up by a so called friend, that sent me into another depression, got over that, sent back to UK, then sent to Iraq, was bullied out there and witnessed someone getting killed, came back to UK, started with depression again, was very lonely, wanted to die, met a lovely girl by chance, but was on heavy anti-depressant medication, very quickly got married, even though I didn’t love her, it was very impulsive (I’ve always been very impulsive), cheated on her within 3 months (was seduced by an 18 year old girl), told my wife what I did, she had never gotten over it after 9 years of marriage, I made a stupid mistake at work whilst on tablets, told my boss, was sent to military prison, discharged, ended up in a factory stuffing cushions, wife became pregnant, old girlfriend from Romania that I loved got back in touch with me, stupidly arranged to meet her, she never turned up but my wife saw the emails, she was deeply hurt, beautiful baby girl born, but the pain of my stupid betrayal constantly reared its ugly head, constant arguments, my wife discovered I had a porn addiction, which she was strictly against, which made me resent her, somehow got back into the military, tried to cheat again but again wife saw emails, wife now very badly damaged, my phone is blocked from all porn, I can’t go on the computer, I don’t have any real friends apart from those I work with, my wife never lets me go out and is constantly (rightly so) suspicious of me all the time, she has flash backs about my stupid mistakes, which causes us to argue, which makes me shout, which makes me feel bad because I made her this way, I want to leave but she stuck with me through my worse times, plus we have a daughter who I love more than anything, I can’t leave her, but I can’t take the pressure of living in the house any more, all I do is work work work, nothing else, I feel miserable, fed up of the rat race, fed up of consumerism, fed up of bills, I’ll be 40 next year, I will open my eyes soon and be 50, and I feel like I have nothing to look forward to apart from 10 years of work work work, yet I have everything a man could wish for, an amazing wife who I don’t deserve, a beautiful daughter, a job, a house, a car, there are hundreds of thousands of people desperately trying to get to my country dreaming of the life I have, yet this doesn’t help, I get angry at God, but then there are so many other millions of people in the world suffering everyday, who have suffered great loss and injustice, and where is God for them? Fed up of seeing ‘successful’ footballers who have all the cars and money and girls, but I know they are just ‘things’ and things aren’t the answer, so what is the answer? We just keep breathing until we stop? I have been all around the world, raised money for charities, I have helped people with depression (because I’ve been there), but even though I don’t feel depressed right now, just miserable, I think ‘ why the hell don’t I just end it?’ but my daughter stops me, she is so small and she would never understand, and that would be another destroyed life, she would end up more messed up than her dad. Not sure what I’m trying to do here, maybe someone else will identify, maybe I want someone to identify so I know it’s not just me struggling with the futility of it all. Fed up of hating myself for my impulsive ways, I’ve even been to a hypnotherapist recently but that doesn’t seem to work either. Oh what a lovely mess we get ourselves into. Oh I forgot to mention that even though I didn’t love my wife at first, I grew to love her because she is so wonderful, but I don’t realise or appreciate what I have got. I’m ready for harsh words.

    #115404
    Inky
    Participant

    Hi pongo,

    For a moment forget your past. If you woke up with amnesia and looked around, what would you find? You would find a beautiful wife and daughter, a nice home and a (yes, tedious) job. You would think “GREAT!” So let’s start there.

    Everyday cast about for a less tedious job. But don’t pressure yourself. Enjoy the job you have because you know it’ll be temporary.

    Every Friday night have Date Night with your wife. Every Saturday have Family Day with your family. And every Sunday Renew Your Spirit. Yes, I’m telling you to join a religious/spiritual community.

    Just do those things and see what happens.

    Blessings,

    Inky

    #115410
    anita
    Participant

    Dear pongo:

    One’s childhood experience forms one’s brain, so the past doesn’t … go away as we become adults. The teacher that bullied you- him being an adult and his educational background did not change his own past and so he passed on the bullying to you. And as you went through life, it is your past that continued to be your reality.

    There is only one way to proceed, I strongly believe, and that is doing healing work in psychotherapy with a competent, empathetic, trustworthy therapist. That would take time. You are 40. I attended my first competent therapy at 50. It’s been over five years, much progress made and more to be made. It requires, for me, extreme patience with myself and with the process.

    What it comes down to is weakening physiological connections (neuropathways) in the brain and making new ones. It takes time and that extreme patience I mentioned.

    And then, with weakened old neuropathways and the creation of new ones, you will, over time, be able to experience a different kind of life.

    Post anytime.

    anita

    #117139
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Hi pongo,

    Reading your story and taking into account some esoteric (astrological to be honest) concepts (as to my level of knowledge) you seem to be in an vicious circle of ‘moving on from bullying and stagnation’ to ‘breaking the rules’ to ‘enforced back into stagnation by brutal force’.
    Did you run upon this website called tiny BUDDHA by accident or the title attracted you somehow?
    I know it sounds counterintuitive given that you constantly feel lonely, but, have you ever had any thoughts on spending some time of seclusion, for example in Indian ashram or anything like vipassana meditation?
    If you don’t find meaning in our short and terminal existence for yourself, at least now you owe your wellbeing it to your daughter.
    I’m curious of your thoughts

    #117529
    John
    Participant

    Good advice. I will try your suggestions. Thank you.

    #117530
    John
    Participant

    I have been looking at this from all angles (I think), the neurological pathway side (neurons that wire together fire together) (the more we repeat a neural pathway the stronger and more dominant it becomes in the concious mind) and the spiritual side (yes I have always been guided to spiritual books like Paulo Cohello and The Power of Now and started Transcendental Meditation from the age of 14) (and I joined the church in 2008 because of the crisis I had but now only attend church now and again), I have come to the conclusion that my entire focus needs to be my daughter – obviously I don’t want to mould her like a piece of clay into what I think she SHOULD (hate that word) be, but I want to try and use all my anguish and mistakes to guide her, so that hopefully she will not make the same mistakes as I have, but therein lies the paradox – we read in the Bible for instance that it’s only by ‘Trials by Fire’ and ‘Tests’ that we are purified and made as gold. All the painful experiences I’ve had have made me more ‘impervious’ to pain than before, but at the same time I don’t want my daughter to go through the things I have, but then I want her to be a strong confident and balanced person who will make a positive contribution to society, people and the world as a whole, in her own way. From an astrological point of view, I used to very much believe in the Zodiac, and when I read about my own star sign (Pisces) I was shocked at how accurate the personality profile matched my actual personality (I’m pretty much a classic one). I actually used to wish I could escape from it all and become a Monk in a Tibetan monastery, and although I can see the positive benefits of it (I have also been reading a book called The Way of Zen which has been interesting) I am a man of The West and feel that I am supposed to be contributing rather than sitting in the mountains in contemplation, although I can see how tremendously beneficial that would be, but I do have responsibilities here that I can’t just walk away from. Thank you all for your advice.

    #117531
    John
    Participant

    I also like the amnesia idea, millions of men would love to wake up one day and find themselves in the life I’m in, many wake up to a life every day of psychological and physical misery, so I have lots to be thankful for. I also like the idea of psychotherapy, I studied psychology at college and was fascinated by Jung and Freud, so maybe there is something in it.

    #117537
    ketzer
    Participant

    Pongo

    1) The most important thing you can do to help your daughter is to help yourself. You will play a significant role in influencing who she becomes whether you want to or not. Understanding how your father’s past contributed to him becoming who he was and how your past has lead you down the path you have walked can give you a great deal of the wisdom needed to help raise your daughter and steer her down the right paths. We have far less control over what we communicate to each other than our conscious minds are aware of. The best way to communicate the right things to your daughter is to understand them yourself.

    2) A good psychotherapist can be an enormous help in understanding yourself. Unfortunately, not all of them are good, so don’t feel like you can’t doctor shop when looking for a good therapist.

    3) We all live our lives in what can be called the “theater of the mind”. In that theater you are the writer, set designer, protagonist, and you create the entire cast. The “self” you believe yourself to be is not who you truly are, but merely the main character created by the mind in this drama of you and it goes by the handle of “ego”. The mind creates the ego, and then identifies with it as self, forgetting that it is something it invented. This is often disparaged in spiritual circles, but I believe it is a necessary thing for us to experience life in a close and personal way (which you have). However, when you come to understand this, it becomes easier to not take this ego so personally, and to look at it with the mind with some degree of objectivity.
    Since you are on a site called “Tiny Buddha” I would recommend reading up on the Buddha’s concept of “Anatta” or no-self. It is subtle, and I am not sure anyone truly understands it, but contemplating it does help the mind see beyond its fixation of the ego as “self”. I doubt you would lose the ego, but you might develop the ability to look inward (insight) with a better degree of objectivity. The mind is fully capable of examining its own creation with some degree of objectivity, it just needs to see it as such first. Also, key here is looking inward with an eye toward understand the ego (and the theater for that matter) rather than judging and condemning. The more we cast judgment on something, the more the mind paints it as we see it rather then what it is.
    If you are interested in the “theater of the mind”, I would also recommend this guy, http://robertberezin.com/.

    #117538
    ketzer
    Participant

    P.S. I have not been back to Berezin’s sit for a bit and noticed that some of the more fundamental article have been buried. Here is one of the better ones.

    Dreaming and Wakefulness in the Theater of the Brain. Everything is a neurological illusion of consciousness

    #117539
    John
    Participant

    Thank you, I like the idea of a ‘theatre’ of the mind, I’ve often thought it’d be great to sever the artificial nature of who I think I am, and I have on occasion viewed my mind as something constructed, which lead me to the Way of Zen, and I have occasionally experienced the state of ‘no-mind’, but as soon as you realise you have experienced it, you want to grasp it (with effort) but as soon as you grasp, it vanishes, then whey you try to get it back you can’t, it takes no effort, but even putting in no effort is still effort! when I used to meditate a lot, I used to feel like I was in some kind of observatory, some kind of central control room, observing what the mind was doing but totally detached from it, like I was watching someone or something else, which in fact I was. I will look at the article, thanks.

    #117542
    John
    Participant

    I liked the article, reminds me of ‘The Matrix’, Neo believed he lived in the ‘real’ world but it was in fact a computer generated environment, the sensory inputs were not real but were real to him, so in a sense this place that we call reality is not much different. Also reminds me of when I was at college studying psychology, I was very interested in the study of depth perception, when babies first realise that the world is not a 2D image which is projected onto their retina, it is 3D and you can move around in it.

    #117585
    ketzer
    Participant

    the sensory inputs were not real but were real to him, so in a sense this place that we call reality is not much different

    Certainly the universe each of us live in (our theater) is the one created by our minds. It get’s its digital input from the firing or non-firing of neurons, and based on that data, and previous data driven experiences, it creates the holographic reality in our mind where we experience our lives. Yet most still believe in materialism, that there is an independent physical universe made of matter or “stuff” that is “real” and generating the physical phenomenon that feed our senses. However, over the last century, cosmology and physics have pretty much moved away from this view. Physics originally created materialism, but general relativity and quantum mechanics have since moved modern science away from it. The physical world “out there” can no longer be separated from the observing mind “in here”, the two are most likely, in fact, inseparable. So the metaphor of the matrix may fit a lot better then we think. Only there is no race of machines creating it, we all create it together. We and the universe all arise from the same universal consciousness, drawing our information from it and feed our experiences back into it. There is no true separation between me and the universe, and no true separation between each other. As they say, “all is one”.

    #117587
    John
    Participant

    I watched a very interesting programme on BBC2 ‘what’s the smallest thing in the universe’ and it was fascinating to see scientists trying to get right down to the sub-atomic level of matter, beyond quarks. It reminds me of a television screen; what we perceive biologically are images projected onto our retina through the iris, which obviously travel through the optic nerves to our visual cortex, but it’s actually just millions of pixelated coloured dots flashing on/off in a zero/one binary fashion at a tremendous speed. When I look out of the window, I see a view of some kind, but it’s actually a huge matrix of atoms. I think when my daughter is older she will laugh at how we managed with such slow computing/internet speeds, because possibly she will be operating quantum super computers. I also think those quantum super computers will be able to mimic human behaviour to a point where we will think they are concious. I’m not trying to make any point, I’m just rambling.

    #117685
    ketzer
    Participant

    I like rambling. Rambling is often how some of the best points are arrived at.

    Scientists have been searching for the elementary building blocks of “reality” for a long time. Each time they think they get to the smallest, they start looking for and eventually find something a bit smaller yet. They thought that an electron is an “elementary particle” and that it cannot be divided into anything smaller, then someone discovered that under certain circumstances perhaps you can.
    http://www.nature.com/news/not-quite-so-elementary-my-dear-electron-1.10471
    Perhaps more interesting is that the electron may not even be there at all, until you go to look for it. It is not until you ask the universe where the particle is that it obligingly pops it into existence as an electron. (Google double slit experiment if you are interested).
    Until then, only the potential for it to exist as a particle is there, and by there is meant, everywhere. Although it is far more probable to appear in certain places than others, the potential for it to appear anywhere in the universe is, though exceedingly small, never the less, non-zero. They say it is “non-localized” until you go to observer it. Or another way to look at it is that until you look for the electron and cause it to appear as a particle, it is as big as the universe itself…perhaps infinitely big. So the questions becomes, when scientist “discover” smaller and smaller particles, are they finding particles that are already there, or are they bringing them into existence by going to look for them. And if the latter is the case, will the universe simply continue to create smaller and smaller particles for science to discover for as long as we continue to look closer and closer.

    Some say that “all is one” and that we are simply the universe’s way of looking at itself. Some say that physical reality is only a product of conciseness, created on the fly, that the moon is not really there when no one is looking at it, and that we ourselves are a part of this universal consciousness as it dreams up the universe. Silly universe, of course it is going to find a particle there when it goes to look for it, it is the one putting it there. And as for those quantum super computers, they, just like us, and everything else, would be a creation of the universal consciousness, drawn from the same well as everything else that “exists”. So who is to say that just like us, they will not in fact be, “conscious”.

    #118334
    John
    Participant

    I had an interesting experience at around 0230 this morning. I was waiting, when I observed a spider web just above me to my right. The spider was completely still, not wanting or expecting anything, just there. I then saw that little droplets of rain had caught in the web, and I got closer to have a look. I imagined the process of how they got there, the cycle of moisture rising up to the clouds, the clouds becoming heavy with water until gravity takes over and they are released, and some of them caught in this amazing structure of silk, purely of nature but geometrical. Then I realised at that moment that I had the opportunity to do something completely unique in that moment that had never happened since the big bang, and would never happen again. I touched the water droplets until they stuck to the end of my finger, then I tasted the water. A unique moment in time that will never happen again, and that only I knew about.

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