Post by Mike_Duffy Post by LittleEndian
I can stop it at any time, and just be independent of those thoughts,
but at the same time part of me is just too tempted and insists on
identifying with and indulging those thoughts.
I suspect that we all do this to some extent. In my case it is not
"inconsequential things I say while out socialising", rather re-visiting
important choices that I have made at various points of my life and trying
to imagine how things might have turned out had I chosen differently.
Retroreflection is fine as long as it entails more honest self-appraisal in
anticipation of future preparedness than pointless regret of things already
done that cannot be changed.
( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serenity_Prayer )
There was a time in my life when my appraisal was solely focused on how
I will act in the future. So if the information required me to act
differently or take a specific action, I would note that away, and then
I would think on it no more. If the information required no change, then
I'd just be able to let it go. That, unfortunately, is something I
cannot do right now. It's like the temptation to worry and wallow in
such things is too great for me to resist.
Post by Mike_Duffy
Sometimes we are blind to the difference because we are too close to the
I think the cause is a mixture of identification and habit. If the thing
is something you identify with, a thought that you have empowered, then
it's easy to get caught up in it. And if you've been habitually doing it
for a while, then your mind takes that path naturally.
Going through this reminded me of what it's like to start meditating
again, because it feels like I've had to relearn the basics of (1)
catching myself when reflection turns into to worry and (2) to stop
doing that once it has been noticed. That doesn't mean the same thought
won't arise five seconds later, but by repeating this process, in my
experience, such thoughts slowly have less power over you, and
reflection becomes more on point. I'd say this is the essence of
strengthening your circle.