THE OBJECTIVES OF MEDITATION
AND OF LIFE ITSELF: HEALTHY THINKING/EMOTIONS
'If every time a powerful emotion arises you learn to deal with it intelligently, not only will you master the art of liberating emotions at the moment they appear, but you will also erode the very tendencies that cause the emotions to arise. In this way, your character traits and your way of being will gradually be transformed."
"If you get into the habit of looking at thoughts the moment they arise and letting them dissipate before they take hold of you, it will be much easier to retain mastery of your mind and to deal with the conflicting emtions in the thick of everyday activities."
Matthieu Ricard, aka "the world's happiest man", in his book Why Meditate?,
which is to be used as a text to follow for 'practical meditation'.
Operate in reality.
Which then causes freedom
Because we are no longer attaching false beliefs that upset upset us
And the result is peace of mind.
HOW CAN I ACHIEVE THOSE?
First, to initiate the process and engage the higher brain, all you need do is "pause" when the afflictive emotion is first sensed. (You can literally tranform your life if you simply use the pause strategy.) Then do this, asap:
1. Learn, see afflictive emotions, understand so can let them go. Insert the beneficial emotions, practice them.
(You must asap learn and understand the mechanisms of the mind: mechanical associations, coupled with repeated means of dealing with perceived threats, often misperceived and accompanied by rules that are not true. And therefore they are often themselves not true - and it is up to us to screen them out and to choose our actions instead of letting them dictate to us as if they had power in themselves. "Emotions are just emotions, just electrochemical occurrences matching some pattern in the lower brain.")
2. Seeing reality of and stopping identification with emotions
Dissociate ourselves mentally from the emotion that is troubling us. choose to not "be at one" with the emotion, realizing it is something that just occurs and not us. (See Who I Am - and be absolutely clear, as this is essential to living a good life, without having to defend what is not really us.
Look, identify, label, watch what is going on
Realize it is no more than a thought/emotion or "associative pattern", with no more substance than a cloud.
As you experience awareness, say of anxiety, anxiety becomes less because part of the space is taken up by the awareness, using the higher brain, which does not have within it any anxiety.
The questions to ask:
What is this? What am I experiencing?
Does it have the power to dominate me?
to harm me actually?
Is it real or something that exists solely in my brain?
Where is it located in my body?
What color, temperature, texture, shape (and variations) is it?
Where does this come from? Where is it now? Where will it disappear to?
"Always remember...that a thought is merely the expericne of many factors and fleeting circumstances coming together. Whether the thought is good or bad, it has no true existence."
"...all thoughts in their infinite variety...are utterly without substance."
Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
Gradually I began to recognize how feeble and transitory the thoughts and emotions that had troubled me for years actually were, and how fixating on small problems had turned them into big ones."
Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, whose book is absolutely recommended
The Joy Of Living - Very much worth your reading, studying.