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Hello cafeverse -- I'm curious to see if any other INFJs on here have found mindfulness & unattachment to be a changing force in their lives. I'm also curious to see who else feels like they're straddling this world and the spirit world on a daily basis [and if this has led you to think about spiritual pursuits]. And lastly: if anyone else has chosen simplicity, sparse income, and philosophical pursuits over the traditional system of going to college and forming a career [as I have].

For those interested in my story [or possibly ideas on how to feel better], let me elaborate...

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

From early childhood, I was always very depressed and ungrounded. I spent a lot of time being melancholy and not knowing why. I was always filled with conflict, which led to me using art as an outlet. After studying energy work later in life, I realized that I have healing tendencies and I often take other people's emotional pain away -- which is fine if you know how to shield and disperse it however, I would always identify with it and think it was "me."

Learning to become an observer of my mind has helped me to be conscious of when that energy doesn't originate with me, and it also has tremendously helped my "bounceback" time. Perhaps a few years ago, if I had an emotional incident in the morning, my entire day would turn into a downward, self-analyzing spiral. Now, it only takes a couple minutes for me to address an issue and move on. "Nobody ever said you have to be the same person you were five minutes ago" -- an anonymous and utterly true quote :)

I also had a traumatic, hallucinogenic crisis the first and only time I ever tried weed about a year and half ago -- I believe my ego truly died that day. It took me a full year to relax after that happened, since my eyes were opened so violently, but ultimately it was for the better. I feel more connected to my non-existence than ever before. Maybe not everyone here has experienced this but it is quite peaceful.

One last thing that has helped tremendously: realizing the impermanence of all things. Not only does it help you understand the very temporary nature of all negative feelings & occurrences [which will help you to let go], but it reminds you of the fleeting nature of positive things as well. This has helped me to be much more grateful and aware of the beautiful things and people in my life, for they won't always be around. I've also released many desires for material belongings [this might not work for everyone]. I've never really wanted that much anyway other than a few pretty trinkets, and now my closet only contains a few Jedi-esque clothes which I think says a lot when compared to the average American woman, haha...

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Thanks for reading, I'd love to hear your thoughts & especially any similar experiences.
 

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that was an interesting read!

thanks to this post, I just realised that there is a correlation between minimalism and Buddhism!

I am a Buddhist and I meditate daily. I have found that meditation has helped to improve my concentration (I couldn't focus on a single task for more than 5 mins) and to be more mindful... but I'm still not mindful enough.

I have no problem letting go of my materialistic desires, but when you are an INFJ and you find yourself connecting very strongly with someone, it's very hard to detach yourself from them. the most painful part is noticing yourself getting attached, knowing getting attached is suffering, knowing the impermanence of this feeling, you STILL can't let them go, though you are sure you don't cross their mind even once.

looks like I got something to work on. and Buddhist philosophy is indeed deep and fascinating. there's always a lot to think about!
 

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Amen, sister. Thanks for the testimony.

It seems there is a little collection of people on this board who practice Buddhism at least. From an INFJ point of view, I would say that perhaps things like dana (generosity) and metta (loving-kindness) practice might be "easier with Fe", compared to something like sitting meditation maybe potentially being 'harder' because it's such a focus on Se. But the functions are no more "me or mine" than any of the "five heaps". Surely whatever "type" you are, that's where you practice from. Wherever you go, there you are.

For me, mindfulness is the supreme practice of Buddhism - mindfulness in the long and in the short, in the high and in the low, of the past and the present and the future, of the fall and rise of the Passions, and of the fall and rise of the Heart. Or putting it so much better than me, Great Master Rinzai who taught that the essence of Buddhism was "when hungry, eat; when tired, sleep".

I'm afraid my personal experience of marijuana has led more to eating chocolate and making intricate dubstep music than over-engagement with 'suchness', but I had a wonderful experience of dissolving my experience of the narrative a number of years ago now during one rohatsu (all-night sitting, celebration of the Buddha's enlightenment) session. I wrote about it elsewhere, and it seems unnecessary to link because really what good does putting it into words ever do anyway? Of course, your story was inspiring and warming to read, so there's that I guess.

One thing I might say: I wasn't immediately sure about your reference to "straddling this world and the spirit world on a daily basis". The world is the world: what's the "spirit world"? There is nothing other than the ordinary world of the six senses [note to non-Buddhists: we refer to the "six senses" of sight, sound, taste, smell, touch, and "thought" - the "mind" is treated as a sense-organ, and its impressions of the world are filled as "sensory" data in parallel with other sensory data], and the rise and fall of the Passions in our ordinary lives. No doubt I misunderstand what you meant.

May the suffering of all beings end, may all beings achieve Buddhahood.
 
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I am not a Buddhist, but I agree with many of its beliefs...
For example, I meditate daily, try to let go things... But, as RandomlyChildish, it's difficult when talking about persons.
 
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I was talking about this the other day. Staying in the present moment, and accepting it, has been of my biggest problems in life.

And really, this is the central theme of all religions. Eternity. They want to put you in eternity. Great philosophers do too. Eternity is the right now, we just don't know it. As soon as one falls from eternity, they require purpose. The present is eternity. It is when we think about the past, or future, do we fall.

The moment. The play. There is no moment even. Lewis said, this moment contains all moments.

Joseph Campbell:

Eternity isn't some later time. Eternity isn't a long time. Eternity has nothing to do with time. Eternity is that dimension of here and now which thinking and time cuts out. This is it. And if you don't get it here, you won't get it anywhere. And the experience of eternity right here and now is the function of life.

Lewis thought that the present moment, is when time meets eternity. And only then, can we see God. Because God is what we are absent from.

I like this passage from The Screwtape Letters. Here, "The Enemy" is God, that is how the demon refers to God in the book. This is from the Demon's point of view, educating another how to best bring more souls into "Our father's house", or hell:

The humans live in time but our Enemy destines them to eternity. He therefore, I believe, wants them to attend chiefly to two things, to eternity itself, and to that point of time which they call the Present. For the Present is the point at which time touches eternity. Of the present moment, and of it only, humans have an experience analogous to the experience which our Enemy has of reality as a whole; in it alone freedom and actuality are offered them.

Our business is to get them away from the eternal, and from the Present. With this in view, we sometimes tempt a human (say a widow or a scholar) to live in the Past. But this is of limited value, for they have some real knowledge of the past and it has a determinate nature and, to that extent, resembles eternity.

It is far better to make them live in the Future. Biological necessity makes all their passions point in that direction already, so that thought about the Future inflames hope and fear. Also, it is unknown to them, so that in making them think about it we make them think of unrealities. In a word, the Future is, of all things, the thing least like eternity. It is the most completely temporal part of time--for the Past is frozen and no longer flows, and the Present is all lit up with eternal rays.

And the Dalai Lama says the same thing, when asked what most puzzled him in this world, he said:

“Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.”
 

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sparse income
Sparse income is meaningless spiritually.

If money is irrelevant, as it truly is, then why would it matter how much you had or generated? It wouldn't.

It would only matter to a person who wants to appear pious, or conversely to someone who is greedy. In this way, I've helped you discover one attachment you can let go of. ;)

I just make this point because I was going down the same path; I thought I was going to end up some monk somewhere who had forsaken all worldly pursuits. It wasn't God's plan that I do this, though.

I personally would much prefer to be some monk in a monastery, but surrendering my will to God actually means doing things that may appear to all others as pursuing worldly gain. Just something to think about...

I also had a traumatic, hallucinogenic crisis the first and only time I ever tried weed about a year and half ago -- I believe my ego truly died that day. It took me a full year to relax after that happened, since my eyes were opened so violently, but ultimately it was for the better. I feel more connected to my non-existence than ever before. Maybe not everyone here has experienced this but it is quite peaceful.
Ah yeah, I had the same thing happen to me. It wasn't fun. My ego died and then I brought it back. During the experience I became a Christian. I still can't relax and it's been a year and a half of constant anxiety seemingly caused by nothing.

If you know any tips to get yourself relaxed without killing your ego, let me know. I need help with this!
 

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Hi there -- sorry it took so very long for me to get back! I'm new to personalitycafe and I thought I had email notifications set up for whenever I get responses. Guess I need to look at my settings again. > . <

Thank you for your response. And after reading your comments about the spirit world, I realize that that was not quite the right choice of words. I should've said "the collective unconscious," as Jung called it, or perhaps, "the void." I suppose I feel like I'm very loosely tethered to this world, always with a sense of feeling like I'm floating above my body. Like I'm neither here nor there. I'm not sure if you can relate to this or not but I believe this is what I meant to say! :)
 

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Amen, sister. Thanks for the testimony.

It seems there is a little collection of people on this board who practice Buddhism at least. From an INFJ point of view, I would say that perhaps things like dana (generosity) and metta (loving-kindness) practice might be "easier with Fe", compared to something like sitting meditation maybe potentially being 'harder' because it's such a focus on Se. But the functions are no more "me or mine" than any of the "five heaps". Surely whatever "type" you are, that's where you practice from. Wherever you go, there you are.

For me, mindfulness is the supreme practice of Buddhism - mindfulness in the long and in the short, in the high and in the low, of the past and the present and the future, of the fall and rise of the Passions, and of the fall and rise of the Heart. Or putting it so much better than me, Great Master Rinzai who taught that the essence of Buddhism was "when hungry, eat; when tired, sleep".

I'm afraid my personal experience of marijuana has led more to eating chocolate and making intricate dubstep music than over-engagement with 'suchness', but I had a wonderful experience of dissolving my experience of the narrative a number of years ago now during one rohatsu (all-night sitting, celebration of the Buddha's enlightenment) session. I wrote about it elsewhere, and it seems unnecessary to link because really what good does putting it into words ever do anyway? Of course, your story was inspiring and warming to read, so there's that I guess.

One thing I might say: I wasn't immediately sure about your reference to "straddling this world and the spirit world on a daily basis". The world is the world: what's the "spirit world"? There is nothing other than the ordinary world of the six senses [note to non-Buddhists: we refer to the "six senses" of sight, sound, taste, smell, touch, and "thought" - the "mind" is treated as a sense-organ, and its impressions of the world are filled as "sensory" data in parallel with other sensory data], and the rise and fall of the Passions in our ordinary lives. No doubt I misunderstand what you meant.

May the suffering of all beings end, may all beings achieve Buddhahood.
I just tried to respond to you and I think i responded to the whole thread.... damn, I'm so confused, haha.
 
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