Author Topic: lessening attachment to pleasures  (Read 377 times)

Offline Arkena

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lessening attachment to pleasures
« on: November 07, 2018, 11:45:26 am »
One danger i see in myself in regards to misunderstanding the teachings that refer to lessening our attachment to pleasures...

Its clear i dont understand these teachings as i find myself becoming anti pleasure in that i start at times to reject things and have aversion for things that feel good (alot of good feelings means something is good for us or agrees with our preferences eg: food, etc).

I find this misunderstanding leads to aversion to pleasurable activities not unlike something i experienced when i used to be depressed.
Its like if i enjoy something i say to myself "i shouldnt enjoy doing this" and feel either guilt or do it anyway but feel awful and ruin the pleasure.

I find also my misunderstanding leads to me lessening my enjoyment of things because i feel conflicted and stressed.

Its clear i dont understand and this is leading me to reject the nature of pleasurable things.

Its clear i am on the wrong path and that i am not reducing my attachment to pleasure. Developing a negative view of something previously i saw as positive is clearly not the path.

Please explain where i am going wrong and help me shed my ignorance.


Offline Chaz

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Re: lessening attachment to pleasures
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2018, 11:55:52 am »
One danger i see in myself in regards to misunderstanding the teachings that refer to lessening our attachment to pleasures...

Its clear i dont understand these teachings as i find myself becoming anti pleasure in that i start at times to reject things and have aversion for things that feel good (alot of good feelings means something is good for us or agrees with our preferences eg: food, etc).

I find this misunderstanding leads to aversion to pleasurable activities not unlike something i experienced when i used to be depressed.
Its like if i enjoy something i say to myself "i shouldnt enjoy doing this" and feel either guilt or do it anyway but feel awful and ruin the pleasure.

I find also my misunderstanding leads to me lessening my enjoyment of things because i feel conflicted and stressed.

Its clear i dont understand and this is leading me to reject the nature of pleasurable things.

Its clear i am on the wrong path and that i am not reducing my attachment to pleasure. Developing a negative view of something previously i saw as positive is clearly not the path.

Please explain where i am going wrong and help me shed my ignorance.

The problem lies in that your trying.

Detachment from pleasure is not something you can switch to.  It has to come naturally and it will, with time.  Focus on practice and not on living some ideal which for now will be impossible to attain.

Keep in mind there is nothing wrong with, or bad about pleasure.  The attachment to pleasure as something unchanging and lasting is what causes suffering.

Offline Anemephistus

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Re: lessening attachment to pleasures
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2018, 12:54:13 am »
I agree with Chaz, I would add that Right View is worthy to consider from your description. There is a concept about being able to remain in a pleasurable sort of feeling while skillful qualities grow.

Pleasure is not bad, pleasure is not inherently suffering, suffering comes from how we put pleasure in context. Many forms of pleasure are impermanent but that does mean we shouldn't enjoy them, it just means we should focus while we enjoy them so that we experience the reality of them while we are with them, and don't suffer as much when they pass.  I love to cook and eat, I like an occasional whiskey or a good rum, I enjoy video games and time wasters and music.

The difference in me from before teachings helped me put things in a better context and after was how I viewed these things. Before when I ate something great, I wanted more and thought about later in this kind of "I'll have to come get this again, or make this again. Now when I have a good meal, I really reach out and taste it, when it's done I am grateful I got to enjoy it. I might get the same food again, but I am not planning it out while I eat it. When I finish a good video game, I don't wish there was more to play or that the company would get a sequel out right now, I used to, but now I think about the enjoyment I got from the game and I sometimes even e-mail the developers and tell them how much I enjoyed the wonderful distraction they provided.

I get to keep the enjoyment of things when they pass because of the teachings of the Buddha, instead of endlessly lamenting there is not more of whatever pleasure I have encountered. Context is really important with this stuff, don't make yourself miserable because of what Monks and Bodhisattva's do...I am under the strong impression they aren't miserable and I would estimate this is because they have walked the path and adopted the proper mindset to feel pleasant under different circumstances.

Not being attached to pleasure is not about not experiencing it, its about enjoying that pleasure properly and recognizing it in a way which grows skillful behavior. If I am eating cake and a thought comes that I shouldn't enjoy it because the pleasure is not going to last...I am not eating cake, I am not present with my action and I am using my capacity for understanding to make myself sad. Cake is not a vehicle for sadness!  If I am eating cake aware that this is the only moment in which I will eat this particular bite, and I engage my senses and really taste the cake and am pleased I had the chance to eat it when I am done...Then I feel like I am closer to having properly enjoyed the experience.  I know I will get hungry again, it's endless until its over, so how to see it properly through right view and right discernment is very important.


 


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