Thanks for your reply but as you can see I'm still confused.
Originally Posted by Emerging Buddhist
Not a problem @Anon Pink.
In his anxiety he is needing to rely on pharma-induced mindfulness, if there can truly be such a thing... the loss of his brother whom he loved dearly and looked up to reliant as well as a pillar in his life, and his own frailty in diabetes which he doesn't manage well is suffering he is not overcoming.
Okay this is the first part I'm not fully getting.
Mindfulness of his loss, his own frailty, and the consequent and inescapable suffering. If I restated that correctly, what exactly is one to do, think, contemplate, feel, etc, in order to be mindful of these things?
Accepting each of these and being ready to accept each of these lead to the same place although two entirely different tasks, one a preparation, the other an action.
Lead to the same place? Inner Peace? Wha....?
Preparing to be ready (acceptance) is the series of learning to be kind enough to ourselves to not create suffering from suffering, recognizing that life while wonderful in all it is, will likely take at times more than it gives and it's how we handle those times when the balance is not in our favor that will either lessen our suffering, or add to it. It is in this practice that we ready ourselves for the next step...
Learning to be kind enough to ourselves to not create suffering from suffering. The practical application would be....eating right? Getting enough sleep? Getting appropriate exercise? What about psychologically beating ourselves up? Loss necessarily includes regret, guilt, even anger and hostility, it's one thing to kindly eat right but those emotional traps can't be so easily navigated. It is those emotional traps that, many times, prevent us FROM being kind to ourselves.
Maybe I just don't understand the concept of mindfulness.
Accepting and living through the suffering with giving ourselves the best love we can muster... eating right, balancing our medication for our health, not creating suffering for other through our action and choices... true acceptance.
Okay this makes sense. Just do the best you can each day to take care of yourself. Just do what you can and allow that some days you will take good care and other days you may not. Right?
If I have that right, here is where it really confuses me: what if you have that mindset of each day to just try to do the best you can, accept that some days your best isn't enough. IOW, it's actually allowing further sinking? Sleep, eat, move...what if none of those are consistent enough to keep from sinking deeper and deeper? The guilt of knowing that your best isn't enough, knowing the sinking continues actually exacerbates the sinking. How is mindfulness or acceptance supposed to work in this situation?
Too often, we try to shortcut and jump strait into acceptance without preparing... and like any unprepared task that doesn't come easy, we land more disappointed than when we began, and more frustrated looking for even easier unmindfulness to ease pain in our lives.
Preparing to accept...? I don't understand. "I accept that today I was able to hit one of the three (sleep, eat, move) and not able to hit two. But the downward slide continues, and I accept that."
As much as we want it to be, cyclic suffering is never black and white.
Not knowing the OP's husband, I do not know how he is prepared but she would, and if she would share and we listen, that may help understand better the offerings of this site.
I understand cyclic suffering. Spiral emotional processing. Spiral downward and dip into an aspect of pain, process that and spiral upward for a time. Ignoring the painful issue and gaining some strength before spiraling downward again, dip further into the painful issue and process for a time before spiraling upward again. This process is repeated over and over and over and over. Cyclic suffering, cyclic processing, cyclic healing.
Ideally, during the processing phase a coping skill is learned, insights are gained, progress is made. That progress, in practical terms, means that during the upward spiral the upward movement is ever so much higher than before. Ideally.
Sometimes the depth and breadth of emotional pain means it might take many many dips doward before enough has been processed in order to actually move incrementally higher at the upward phase.
This kind of spiral processing is healthy, even when the ideal isn't realized because there are enough segments upward to keep from sinking and not getting back up.
It becomes unhealthy when the spiral downward never gets back up. It dips down, begins to move up but dips right back down and instead of incremental upward cycles, it has become incremental downward cycle. The upward swings that were supposed to allow strength to gather were insufficient to allow strength to gather before shifting back down and so the downward swing went a tad deeper than it had before. The upward swing didn't even make it to where it was before and the next downward swing went even deeper. The unhealthy destructive cycle has begun. Or as you put it, creating suffering from suffering?
How does mindfulness or acceptance or preparation to accept work in this situation?