Author Topic: Psychosis  (Read 88 times)

Jess

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Psychosis
« on: November 12, 2020, 10:25:48 AM »
Hello meditators

I'd like to talk about some experiences I've had over the past couple of years and hopefully someone might be able to offer some advice.
So, in my younger years I've experimented with psychedelics. I think too many times I have not been in a very good head space while doing them and so I feel like now I may have damaged my brain/nervous system response in that way.

I have been doing Vipassana for 6 years now and about a year ago I went to an Isha Yoga workshop with Sadhguru, we all sat to do some meditation and Sadhguru did something with the energy in the room and I could feel it, it became very intense and I began feeling like I was going to go into a psychosis. There was the fear that I was going to lose my mind, so I had to stop. This is not the first time I have experienced this feeling - like I said, I have had some experiences on psychedelics which were very similar, but it had never happened when I have been sober.

Now for the past year I have been dealing with phases of going into panic attacks and just feeling very detached from the world, like everything is very foreign or alien, and like I'm experiencing something completely different to everyone else. Almost kind of like paranoia. It has calmed down quite a lot now, but there is still a feint remanence. Sometimes I think that maybe I should keep trying to face this fear - that I'm about to lose my mind, but then I think, what if I really do 'lose my mind'?

I have never had any experiences like this with Vipassana, but after having such intense experiences with Sadhguru it makes me feel like I should pursue it, but get my nervous system back into harmony first.

Sorry for all the writing, I really appreciate any advice.

Lots of Metta,

Jess
🙏

stillpointdancer

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Re: Psychosis
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2020, 11:54:24 AM »
Personally I would steer away from your Sadhguru work for a while. It's specialist stuff and can cause problems sometimes. It may be that there are other reasons for your feelings of detachment and for your panic attacks, and it may be worth a visit to your doctor to chat about it.
“You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.” Franz Kafka

Middleway

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Re: Psychosis
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2020, 12:10:08 PM »
Hi Jess,

I too dabbled with various techniques including Geonka's, Isha Sadhguru, Kriya Yoga etc. They may work for some people but they also have the potential to damage the brain. I can offer you another simple rule of thumb. Anything technique that attempts to forcefully "still the mind" without accompanying wisdom is potentially dangerous. Stillness of the mind is the result or fruit of wisdom. If it is achieved in any other way, is not stillness. Forceful technique could potentially lead to hypnosis, psychosis and various other mind related disorders. They are not grounded in reality.

The fact that you are here asking these questions, you had the right gut feeling that Isha technique may cause you to lose your mind. When in doubt, don't do it. You have only one brain, and you cannot afford to damage it. Follow the meditation technique provided in the main page of this forum. This relaxed concentration allows insights to arise. These insights bring wisdom and calmness to your mind. And only wisdom that sets us free. Please take care of yourself.

Warm regards,

Middleway
Take everything I say with a grain of salt.

dharma bum

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Re: Psychosis
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2020, 01:50:45 PM »
All these guys Sadhguru or Sri Sri Ravi Shankar encourage a personality cult, run business empires with a lot of marketing behind them. They seem to have extra-large egos. How can they help us reduce our own egos?

One of these gurus visited the offices of a relative of mine who was a university professor. My relative greeted him with a cordial namaste the standard Indian greeting. The guru kept staring at my uncle and one of his disciples gestured to my uncle to touch the guru's feet which is what many people around were doing. My uncle cordially declined. At that time my uncle was the highest ranking person in the office, hence the special attention to my uncle. Many of these gurus are skilled at manipulating the levers of power with individuals as well as with groups of individuals.

I personally don't believe in mysticism. IMO what happens is that the guru has a certain kind of charisma and you respond to the responses of people around you and that can take you to a weird place in the mind.
Mostly ignorant

Dhamma

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Re: Psychosis
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2020, 07:30:41 PM »
All these guys Sadhguru or Sri Sri Ravi Shankar encourage a personality cult, run business empires with a lot of marketing behind them. They seem to have extra-large egos. How can they help us reduce our own egos?

One of these gurus visited the offices of a relative of mine who was a university professor. My relative greeted him with a cordial namaste the standard Indian greeting. The guru kept staring at my uncle and one of his disciples gestured to my uncle to touch the guru's feet which is what many people around were doing. My uncle cordially declined. At that time my uncle was the highest ranking person in the office, hence the special attention to my uncle. Many of these gurus are skilled at manipulating the levers of power with individuals as well as with groups of individuals.

I personally don't believe in mysticism. IMO what happens is that the guru has a certain kind of charisma and you respond to the responses of people around you and that can take you to a weird place in the mind.


I agree, more or less, with you.

What makes you enlightened is your own mind. No outside person can do it.

That said, we have to be careful because there have been yogis in India who have been enlightened without running a personality/guru worship cult.

In Tibetan Buddhism, you can also find a cultish/worship tendancy with many gurus. But, of course, that doesn't invalidate Tibetan Buddhism and all of its schools - not at all. You find less of this in the Zen/Chan/Seon and Theravada schools, but it's still there at times.

Some of the most profound and beautiful teachings on emptiness I've ever heard came from Tibetan Buddhist teachers, by the way.

I am not here to run down others, or compare negatively -- simply to discuss for better understanding. If my speech starts to get negative, or not productive, I will no longer post on this topic. I need to start following Right Speech better.
You are already Buddha

May we see clearly the emptiness of all phenomena

dharma bum

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Re: Psychosis
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2020, 07:47:59 PM »
Quote
I am not here to run down others, or compare negatively -- simply to discuss for better understanding. If my speech starts to get negative, or not productive, I will no longer post on this topic. I need to start following Right Speech better.

Yes, I also wonder about the correctness of my own negative comments about some gurus. Who am I to say who people should learn from. You can learn from anybody or anything, even a tree or a rock.

On the other hand, I think some of these gurus can cause harm to people. So I hope people disregard my comments if they seem stupid.
Mostly ignorant

Dhamma

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Re: Psychosis
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2020, 01:07:24 AM »
Yes, I also wonder about the correctness of my own negative comments about some gurus. Who am I to say who people should learn from. You can learn from anybody or anything, even a tree or a rock.On the other hand, I think some of these gurus can cause harm to people. So I hope people disregard my comments if they seem stupid.


You are comments are super, dear friend.

I think I am speaking with great ignorance all the time, too. LOL.

But, it is important to say that some of these gurus are indeed dangerous. Some even are running cults. It must be said.


Peace and enlightenment. 
You are already Buddha

May we see clearly the emptiness of all phenomena