'Tracy Diaries' Part 8

McLeod Ganj Travel Blog

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Angry or just plain bonkers?

Apartment

(No.19, Hotel Ladies Venture, Jogiwara Road, McLeod Ganj, Himchal Pradesh, North India.)

 ‘I’ feel like a mental prisoner. This ‘mind’ is very bad in the sense that I recognise the tendencies of ignorance, greed (laziness), and so forth. This is stopping me fulfil a proper practice. Instead of saying next, ‘What ‘I’ must do to combat this…”, instead ‘one’ should make the ‘right effort’ to carry out the ‘right practice’ along the ‘right path’.

One could state, instead of clinging to the ‘I’ is, “The Right Thing (in relation to the ‘Middle Way’) to do now is…” or even, “What would a Buddha do now?” indicating a proper or most appropriate course of action as a remedy.

These above thoughts have arisen out of reflection this morning, arising from the realisation that I have still, up to now, not carried out any of the organised ‘to-do’ lists that I have attempted.

 I realise this mind is holding me back. This mind is thinking, ‘It’s raining’ (therefore I shall get wet and it’s miserable), ‘It’s nice and quiet in this room, I won’t get bothered in here’ (by beggars or the internet man) or ‘I think I should get on and meditate, so I should stay here, that is the most important thing right now’. The latter, although being correct, the intention is to avoid going out and getting physical things done outside the apartment, like, a hair cut, check the internet, translation for Dorjee and buy drinking water. Some of which are of course, not urgent.

These thoughts are all something the psychologist can analyse easily. It is avoidance or procrastination, due to an innate fear of something ‘negative or uncomfortable’ happening, something that I will not like or cannot ‘control’.

 Dr Brook (my psychiatrist) would ask gently, “If you do this (the action I have an aversion to) what do you think is going to happen? Why do you think that is going to happen?” Because of experience? However, that isn’t always the case,  is it? You can’t always know what is going to happen as things are impermanent. Things are constantly changing. Even peoples reactions change, especially in effect to how you are with them (Cause and Effect). “The thing you are worrying about, hasn’t happened yet, so why are you worrying about something that hasn’t happened? Do you see pain it is causing?”

 One can have physiological effects of ‘fear’ of a future event that may or may not happen (worrying). This can bring on the following negative physical effects such as (commonly known effects) headache, nausea, vomiting, shaking, leg-foot-hand tapping, pacing, nail biting, scratching, forgetfulness, hopelessness, helplessness. If one has most of these conditions it is generally called ‘stress’ .Excessive stress leads to more serious physiological effects such as mental breakdown, physical exhaustion, depression, violence, withdrawal, or even attempts at suicide. Hence, the increased attention that ‘Mental Health’ is getting in the UK currently.

 Many businesses and employers are acknowledging a decrease in employees performance due to stress brought on by workload, shifts and mental demand (i.e., working in emergency services, mortuary and sewers as opposed to a shelf-stacker or newspaper deliverer). There are also acknowledgements of Post Traumatic Stress within jobs that demand a high level of mental attention, focus and thought processing.

Employers will surely benefit from seeing their employees happier and healthier if they take preventative measures; a decrease in sickness levels shows a happier, more satisfied employee, therefore increasing profits. Everyone benefits from preventative measures within the workplace!

 A happy workplace! Can you imagine that? It would be a pleasure to go to work, arrive at the workplace smiling, a pleasure to get tasks done, knowing you are being looked after by your bosses, after all, they want the best out of you! ‘You cannot flog a dead horse’, so they say! Therefore, it is in the interests of the bosses to look after their employees. Everyone wants to be treated nicely, and then it will be nice to do something for him or her in return. ‘You scratch my back, I will scratch yours’, ‘Do as you would be done by’, and ‘You reap what you sow’. No one wants to work for a bad, greedy, self centred, angry, or unhappy boss, do they?

  Sorry, ranting again. However, I think I have made a valid point. What do you think?

So, back to the original point. There is ‘procrastination’ in the air! I am having difficulty in evading thought processes instead of just ‘doing’. Like the Nike ‘tick’ , ‘just do it’ !

Now I shall eat noodles.

Having eaten noodles and putting on Faithless ‘God is a DJ’ to motivate me, I realise how fine a line having music on is. It can motivate you or vegetate you! Now I tidy the room. The cupboard begs me to re-organise it. I am en-tranced by Faithless ‘We come 1’

(Click above the above word ‘come’ to hear):

 

I burn the Guggal

Wash up in the bathroom

Make a coffee

Sort some biscuits

Consume both

Turn up the volume…

SORT THE CUPBOARD!

 

Ok that’s enough ‘trance’! L

 

Now I am playing a little of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s teaching, speaking in Tibetan. I find myself being quite serious when I hear his voice. He is a real person I can relate to, not a God. The things he advises I should take on board. It is as if he is saying, “If I can do it, so can you, I am 71 years old you know and I am still trying my best! Always trying my best!”  J

Moreover, I still have not left the apartment. I have been watching the DVD ‘Indochine’ with Catherine Deneuve. I cried. It was two and a half hours long!

Because there has been a power cut, I have to consider I have not long before the laptop ceases!

Will I make it to see Dorjee and apologise for not popping in yesterday?

Will I get to the internet to update the website?

Will I meditate?

 

Maybe it would be a good think to actually ‘lose’ my mind, and then it could not distract me!

 

Ok, to get me out, what do I have to do?

1)     Meditate!

2)     Get on the internet

a.      Update website

b.      Check emails

c.      Email office of HH re: Ordination

d.      Add contact details

e.      Look for info to help Dorjee

f.        Look at Tibetan Dog

g.      Look for Green haired monkey in Himchal Pradesh

3)     Buy

a.      Pilchards

b.      Large water

c.      Incense holder

 

4)     Get Hair cut!

 

So, must face the music sometime!

 

Eventually I created a list I was happy with. It is now stuck to the wall. A ‘reward’ system to motivate me to do the simplest of things of which I seem to be unmotivated to do. (I wonder how I made it to the classes last week!)

Even though in Buddhist ways, I should not be seeking rewards for doing things. However, the idea of rotting in hell and suffering do not seem such a deterrent most times. I need inspiration to motivate me. Maybe the only place it will come, without relying on anyone else (which I always had an aversion to) is through oneself, through listening, reflecting and meditation.

I made a small list of four items to complete each day, but even that seems too much, overwhelming. The list of four is

1) Meditate

2) Check internet

3) Read

4) Meet Dorjee

 

The thought of meeting Dorjee to translate for his book seems to fill me with negative thoughts. I think I should stop seeing him. Distractions from what I came here for are to be avoided. Nevertheless, I must be somewhat selfish to be at least of a more positive mind before being able to help others. “All for one, and one for all!”

I have a rough night with a rough throat.

 

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Angry or just plain bonkers?
Angry or just plain bonkers?
McLeod Ganj
photo by: Stevie_Wes