Author Topic: Need help ending sense-desire.  (Read 2126 times)

budo

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Need help ending sense-desire.
« on: November 19, 2010, 05:19:18 AM »
I am a hungry ghost, I suffer from severe Crohn's disease, and can only eat simple carbs which cannot be found in prepared food that's usually in restaurants, convenience stores, and can only be made by hand. Most of the time I am hungry, but when I eat regular food my intestines flare up, get infected and I "burn up" inside. This is especially hard because at my job everyone goes to lunch together and it's hard to say no to people. Also at my job there are snacks in the kitchen, some of which are healthy but most of the time unhealthy. Sometimes I work late, and my job will order us dinner, but I cannot eat it, however because I am so hungry and I see others eating, I eat and suffer.

My problem is that I give in to sense desire, I know it's bad for me to eat this food, but I still eat it anyways. I know I will suffer from severe pain after I eat it, but I still eat it. I cannot control myself, especially when coworkers and bosses are bringing in donuts and sharing them.

I know the Buddha says reflect your actions before you do them, while you are doing them, and after you do them, this helps me, I have more control than before, but sometimes the desire is too great. I need a shortcut to end sense-desire. To kill it once and for all, I want to be able to look at people eating donuts and absolutely have no desire for it, even if someone puts one in front of me. How can I develop this will power?
 

I feel like a fruit fly that will fly straight into a cup of sugar and kill itself with desire.

Your help is appreciated.
Budo

Morning Dew

  • Guest
Re: Need help ending sense-desire.
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2010, 09:53:35 AM »
Quote
I know the Buddha says reflect your actions before you do them, while you are doing them, and after you do them, this helps me, I have more control than before, but sometimes the desire is too great. I need a shortcut to end sense-desire. To kill it once and for all, I want to be able to look at people eating donuts and absolutely have no desire for it, even if someone puts one in front of me. How can I develop this will power?

Develope an Actual attitude of a Samurai worrior. See the Self (desire) as the attacking enemy. As soon it (the self) moves to slice you with the sharp sword of desires strike back Instantly and cut it right there. Have no mercy! Your sword is the light of awareness. Keep your hand at its handle at all times.
Life of a worrior is not easy but you get the action for free ;)
Stand up and fight!

There is another way thought by Roshi Ben Stiller in the lineage of Dodge Ball. You place one Donuts infront of you and try to take it with one hand. The other hand keeps a switch which can electrecute you if you touch the donut. Good luck!

Friendly :)


rideforever

  • Guest
Re: Need help ending sense-desire.
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2010, 11:51:26 AM »
What if it will take time to change ?  Can you face that ?  Can you accept that ?

Killing / electrocuting / no mercy ???  These are harsh attitudes that can backfire.  A friend of mine lost 2 stone pushing herself through 'LighterLife' ... and after that put on 4 stone and now is inconsoleably depressed. 

She was in such a hurry and unfortunately change doesn't come from pretending things aren't as they are.  They are as they are.

Vipassana is not about 'controlling' yourself.  But just observing with equanimity.  Just observe before, during, after ... observe the breath, but not regulate the breath.  If the breath is relaxed observe the breath being relaxed.  If the breath is stressed observe the breath being relaxed.

It sounds like some practical things like preparing meals in the evening and taking them in to work, or leaving work at 530 sharp every day, would help.  Tell your colleagues not to bring in donuts, which are no 1 on the do not eat list by the way.  In the future you could find somewhere else to work.

Can you get in touch with your feelings about this ?  How does it feel to be how you are, drawn to these things that are harmful ?  Can you be honest with yourself about that ?

Good luck dude

Matthew

  • The Irreverent Buddhist
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  • Meditation: It's a D.I.Y. project.
    • KISS: Keep it simple stupid.
    • Getting nowhere slowly and enjoying every moment.
Re: Need help ending sense-desire.
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2010, 04:21:23 PM »
budo,

Practicality rules in such situations. Often you can avoid this sort of thing by preparing ahead. This could take the form of ALWAYS ensuring you have some appropriate food with you to eat, for example - or that you mentally rehearse not making these choices that are hurting you.

It's hard work learning to make the right choices for yourself and garnering the wisdom to know what that means.

Warm regards,

Matthew
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

mtnmed

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Re: Need help ending sense-desire.
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2010, 06:32:33 PM »
My advice may or may not be helpful to you, but here goes. I am a board certified Nutritionist and personal trainer. There is an exercise I use w/ my clients called "The Willpower Workout". Using your example, here`s how it works. I would take you to the "donut room" and we would sit and watch everyone else enjoying. I would be your strength and support to say no...at first. Whilst watching we would discuss the fact that you are the lucky one and these people need your help and compassion. You would agree that just because these people do not have a defined affliction, those donuts are just as bad for them as they are for you. In fact worse. For them the donuts are a silent killer. As you become stronger, I will place a full plate of donuts in front of you and ask you to place your thoughts for compassion upon the gluttons who gorge their bodies in a state of indifference and denial. Knowing and understanding that you, in fact, are the lucky one would allow your plate of donuts to lose all strength and importance to you. As you sit smiling over a plate of untouched donuts, your peers will begin to take notice and even perhaps heed. When asked, the answer is "I will not disrespect my body by placing such material inside it". What you need is one friend or confidant to be a partner in this exercise with you.
I hope that helps in some small way. Feel free to PM me if you need more nutrition advice.

mtnmed

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Re: Need help ending sense-desire.
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2010, 06:49:41 PM »
Oh, BTW, be glad it is not sex that you are addicted to. My method would certainly cause a problem in the lunch room!   ;)

atalero

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Re: Need help ending sense-desire.
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2010, 09:04:03 PM »
Love this rideforever: Change doesn't come from pretending things aren't as they are.  They are as they are.

Seeing other's as gluttons, on the other hand feels negative to me.  Probably a Western image in my mind, but projecting thoughts/images on to others (positive or negative) as a means to seperate yourself from the problem, seems like ignoring the problem.  Am I wrong?  What feels more truthful to you?

mtnmed

  • Guest
Re: Need help ending sense-desire.
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2010, 10:59:03 PM »
I guess my thoughts are more from a Nutritionist standpoint. My thought is that if you can view the behavior of others as self destructive and THEN look in the mirror it may be easier to change than the approach of denying oneself a perceived pleasure. I admit, I`m no guru, but that approach has worked for numerous clients of mine...none of whom meditate mind you. Most of my collegues (nutritionists and dieticians) will simply say...you know that is bad for you so just stop it. Be disciplined. that does not seem to be a helpful, caring methodology if you ask me. JMO.

kidnovice

  • Member
    • Theravada: with nuts and bolts from Goenka-ji, and fine tuning from Thanissaro Bhikkhu
Re: Need help ending sense-desire.
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2010, 04:10:42 AM »
Hey Budo,

There is a sense in which your situation is unique, and a sense in which it is exactly what we all go through. What makes your situation unique is that you suffer from something that doesn't harm most people, and then you have to watch others having fun that you can't. That's hard. Personally, I think you should really try to accept that. I think you should mourn it, the way you mourn someone dying. The universe has screwed you (just as it has and will screw all of us).You've lost the ability to enjoy a basic pleasure, and that sucks.

I don't say that to make you start pitying yourself. But I wonder if maybe, at some level, whenever you make the decision to eat harmful food, you are pretending that you don't have a problem. Its irrational, but natural. Really accepting your loss might help.

There are some other things you might try. The practical suggestions that people have made sound brilliant. I'll also throw out a few tips that have helped me in my own struggle to undo the habitual thoughts and actions that undermine my happiness. We all have to deal with that! Here are a few thoughts and suggestions. Feel free to ignore the ones that sound stupid to you:

1) Really let yourself feel the suffering that eating bad food causes you. Once you've made the mistake, drop all the guilt and blame, but pay attention to how it hurts you. You might even try meditating when the pain is really bad. Let it sear into your subconscious. Don't try to hide from it in anyway or ignore it. After you're feeling better, you might try to regularly recall what the pain is like. This might help you "feel" the potential consequences next time you are tempted to eat something.

2) Similarly, you might even try do a few minutes of metta whenever you meditate. For example, say to yourself, "May I be free from suffering." Tune into that desire to be happy. Its a good thing. Then, try to recall the most vivid example of when you last suffered from eating the wrong food. Then pay attention to how good it feels to NOT be suffering like that. You might find this really trains your mind to appreciate the joy of not eating bad food.

3) Keep up your meditation practice, but don't worry about sense desire, etc. Just focus on being calm and comfortable. You deserve to be happy, and don't be afraid to let your meditation give you that happiness. This will give you a place of strength to stand on when you have to make tough decisions like skipping the food.

4) Similarly, do things that make you happy! Are there any safe foods that you really enjoy, but feel a but like an indulgence? Have them ready for when temptation strikes. Also, consider making any other life changes that would just make you a happier person. Basically, the happier you are, the easier it is to make acts of renunciation.

Well, I hope some of those tips prove helpful. Best of luck,
KN
« Last Edit: November 20, 2010, 04:13:03 AM by kidnovice »
May we cultivate the serenity to accept the things we cannot change; the compassion to change the things we can; and the wisdom to know the difference.

 

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