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up and down - struggling with depression and grief

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  • jodybol
    I, too, believe that grief and depression - tho related - are in fact separate. Recently I ve battled to keep my grief from falling into depression with which
    Message 1 of 5 , Oct 31, 2007
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      I, too, believe that grief and depression - tho related - are in fact separate. Recently I've
      battled to keep my grief from falling into depression with which I'm all too familiar.

      This morning at my shrine, I felt dry and useless like a leave on the ground after the glow
      of green and the flame of autumn fire. Felt juiceless, depressed and discouraged.

      At least grief feels alive -it is an emotion - a reminder of life even thinking of death. I
      sought even the sap of grieving.

      Last night I had complained at some length to several people about an injustice that had
      "been done to me". I couldn't seem to let go of it. Finally confronted the individual and
      received an apology. Then it hit me:

      1. I wear a "complaint free world" bracelet to stay away from that destructiveness
      2. In preparation for a training session I'd written the aphorism "to deliberately criticize
      another individual may cause an indelible stain on the critic."

      GUILT hit like a red blaze. Not a good night. Then morning snuck in. Dutifully to the
      shrine.

      I listened to the AUM CD of Guru chanting with ocean waves in the background and asked
      for forgiveness and even to cry to wipe away my transgressions. I imagined every image I
      could find of being in his lap as a child, of a muddy youngster running to be cleaned up. I
      felt an ink stain blackening my vision and filling my ears. I asked for tears to wash with.
      Nothing.

      In the excess typical of depression I heard the Simon and Garfunkle tune, "I am a rock, I
      am an island..." I could find no crack, no moisture, no solice and sat feeling parched and
      withered. More than an hour passed.

      My daughter broke the spell by reminding me that I needed to drive her to school. Finally,
      driving home alone, listening to the news, I heard of a couple who had left Myanmar after
      having marched in the streets. I pictured the kind , generous sweetness of so many people
      there who gave me innumerable gifts and the continuous gift of the Chritmas trips.

      My proverbial dam broke and I cried the whole way home. Gratitude soaked in the
      moisture and some humanity crept back into my body.

      I recalled the time when I'd called NY in desperation because depression had so captured
      me that I was close to immobile. I received the message about love and blessing. Instantly,
      at that very moment, every single remnant of the blankness/blackness was gone. Literally
      as if a light had been switched on - no sign of even greyness. No transition.

      Then my tears were gratitude - again.

      As I packed for my trip I found in my briefcase a prasad phote of Guru with the quote:

      "My Lord, my prayer to you is this: Do continue to remain fully in charge of my life."

      and that's where I am now

      opps gotta go pack

      jody
    • abhinabha
      Dear Jody, You have a most remarkable, intuitive and direct writing skill which is very captivating. Your style is so authentically personal it becomes
      Message 2 of 5 , Nov 1, 2007
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        Dear Jody,

        You have a most remarkable, intuitive and direct writing skill which
        is very captivating. Your style is so authentically personal it
        becomes universal. Have you ever thought about writing a book? Or even
        a short story? I think you have an amazing talent.

        And thanks for being so honest about everything.

        Isn't that a great prayer you closed with? I say it every morning
        after my meditation. And feel greatly reassured.

        Best wishes,
        Abhinabha


        --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, jodybol <no_reply@...>
        wrote:
        >
        > I, too, believe that grief and depression - tho related - are in
        fact separate. Recently I've
        > battled to keep my grief from falling into depression with which I'm
        all too familiar.
        >
        > This morning at my shrine, I felt dry and useless like a leave on
        the ground after the glow
        > of green and the flame of autumn fire. Felt juiceless, depressed and
        discouraged.
        >
        > At least grief feels alive -it is an emotion - a reminder of life
        even thinking of death. I
        > sought even the sap of grieving.
        >
        > Last night I had complained at some length to several people about
        an injustice that had
        > "been done to me". I couldn't seem to let go of it. Finally
        confronted the individual and
        > received an apology. Then it hit me:
        >
        > 1. I wear a "complaint free world" bracelet to stay away from that
        destructiveness
        > 2. In preparation for a training session I'd written the aphorism
        "to deliberately criticize
        > another individual may cause an indelible stain on the critic."
        >
        > GUILT hit like a red blaze. Not a good night. Then morning snuck in.
        Dutifully to the
        > shrine.
        >
        > I listened to the AUM CD of Guru chanting with ocean waves in the
        background and asked
        > for forgiveness and even to cry to wipe away my transgressions. I
        imagined every image I
        > could find of being in his lap as a child, of a muddy youngster
        running to be cleaned up. I
        > felt an ink stain blackening my vision and filling my ears. I asked
        for tears to wash with.
        > Nothing.
        >
        > In the excess typical of depression I heard the Simon and Garfunkle
        tune, "I am a rock, I
        > am an island..." I could find no crack, no moisture, no solice and
        sat feeling parched and
        > withered. More than an hour passed.
        >
        > My daughter broke the spell by reminding me that I needed to drive
        her to school. Finally,
        > driving home alone, listening to the news, I heard of a couple who
        had left Myanmar after
        > having marched in the streets. I pictured the kind , generous
        sweetness of so many people
        > there who gave me innumerable gifts and the continuous gift of the
        Chritmas trips.
        >
        > My proverbial dam broke and I cried the whole way home. Gratitude
        soaked in the
        > moisture and some humanity crept back into my body.
        >
        > I recalled the time when I'd called NY in desperation because
        depression had so captured
        > me that I was close to immobile. I received the message about love
        and blessing. Instantly,
        > at that very moment, every single remnant of the blankness/blackness
        was gone. Literally
        > as if a light had been switched on - no sign of even greyness. No
        transition.
        >
        > Then my tears were gratitude - again.
        >
        > As I packed for my trip I found in my briefcase a prasad phote of
        Guru with the quote:
        >
        > "My Lord, my prayer to you is this: Do continue to remain fully in
        charge of my life."
        >
        > and that's where I am now
        >
        > opps gotta go pack
        >
        > jody
        >
      • sharani_sharani
        Dear Jody, My thoughts and affectionate concern are hopping on a coast-to-coast flight from East to West to stop in and let you know that I m wishing you the
        Message 3 of 5 , Nov 2, 2007
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          Dear Jody,
          My thoughts and affectionate concern are hopping on a coast-to-coast
          flight from East to West to stop in and let you know that I'm wishing
          you the pathfinders and tools to firewalk through your grief without
          depression befriending you too closely.

          I do hope you keep sharing with us here. I liked your poem. I adore
          your honesty and courage to speak the real deal of your emotions
          without censoring them.

          Do you find journaling and writing helpful? I was lucky without
          realizing it that I was thrown into writing about my inner process
          immediately when the centre site managers hoped I would write on my
          blog about Guru's passing. With a lot of monologuing here on the IG
          and two long blog posts done even before I came home from the Memorial
          Week, I felt as if I was tangoing with my feelings and urging past the
          "denial" stage that is so typical of the denial, anger, etc. stages of
          grief that Kubler-Ross made famous.

          If you already read a post in which I described some insights that
          came to me at a function in NY last Saturday night
          http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration/message/20865
          please forgive my repetition.

          I just find myself thinking again of the video from exactly a year ago
          we watched on Oct. 27th evening function of Guru talking about one of
          his sisters who was in Heaven while Guru was still here on earth. He
          described his easy access to her and the way that they would talk to
          each other, etc. Then he said that Heaven and Earth are next door,
          next door, next door when we live in the heart. If we live in the
          mind, it is an unimaginable distance [unofficial/not direct quote].

          This idea felt like perfect advice for us now that Guru is in Heaven
          and we are still on Earth. And I find myself thinking of Purnakama's
          quote from Guru's writings in her message 20913 where he states,

          "When the Master is no longer on the physical plane, then the
          disciple has to remain in contact with the Master through his most
          sincere and intense meditation." [unofficial]

          I heard that at the Joy Day in Europe that Kailash lectured and one of
          his main points was that now is a time to really intensify and give
          importance to our meditation/inner life.

          Meditation as a tool to still feel closely connected to Guru without
          his physical presence seems key. However, I will just pray that you,
          me and everyone can find the tools and process that works best for
          them to firewalk through their grief and come out the other side
          without burns on the soles of their feet.

          I feel like as long as we align ourselves with Guru's oft-spoken
          philosophy to never give up that sooner or later the transition
          through these hard times will get easier.

          Well I need to get ready for work - good thing since I can ramble on
          and on,
          Sharani




          --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, jodybol <no_reply@...>
          wrote:
          >
          > I, too, believe that grief and depression - tho related - are in
          fact separate. Recently I've
          > battled to keep my grief from falling into depression with which I'm
          all too familiar.
          >
          > This morning at my shrine, I felt dry and useless like a leave on
          the ground after the glow
          > of green and the flame of autumn fire. Felt juiceless, depressed and
          discouraged.
          >
          > At least grief feels alive -it is an emotion - a reminder of life
          even thinking of death. I
          > sought even the sap of grieving.
          >
          > Last night I had complained at some length to several people about
          an injustice that had
          > "been done to me". I couldn't seem to let go of it. Finally
          confronted the individual and
          > received an apology. Then it hit me:
          >
          > 1. I wear a "complaint free world" bracelet to stay away from that
          destructiveness
          > 2. In preparation for a training session I'd written the aphorism
          "to deliberately criticize
          > another individual may cause an indelible stain on the critic."
          >
          > GUILT hit like a red blaze. Not a good night. Then morning snuck in.
          Dutifully to the
          > shrine.
          >
          > I listened to the AUM CD of Guru chanting with ocean waves in the
          background and asked
          > for forgiveness and even to cry to wipe away my transgressions. I
          imagined every image I
          > could find of being in his lap as a child, of a muddy youngster
          running to be cleaned up. I
          > felt an ink stain blackening my vision and filling my ears. I asked
          for tears to wash with.
          > Nothing.
          >
          > In the excess typical of depression I heard the Simon and Garfunkle
          tune, "I am a rock, I
          > am an island..." I could find no crack, no moisture, no solice and
          sat feeling parched and
          > withered. More than an hour passed.
          >
          > My daughter broke the spell by reminding me that I needed to drive
          her to school. Finally,
          > driving home alone, listening to the news, I heard of a couple who
          had left Myanmar after
          > having marched in the streets. I pictured the kind , generous
          sweetness of so many people
          > there who gave me innumerable gifts and the continuous gift of the
          Chritmas trips.
          >
          > My proverbial dam broke and I cried the whole way home. Gratitude
          soaked in the
          > moisture and some humanity crept back into my body.
          >
          > I recalled the time when I'd called NY in desperation because
          depression had so captured
          > me that I was close to immobile. I received the message about love
          and blessing. Instantly,
          > at that very moment, every single remnant of the blankness/blackness
          was gone. Literally
          > as if a light had been switched on - no sign of even greyness. No
          transition.
          >
          > Then my tears were gratitude - again.
          >
          > As I packed for my trip I found in my briefcase a prasad phote of
          Guru with the quote:
          >
          > "My Lord, my prayer to you is this: Do continue to remain fully in
          charge of my life."
          >
          > and that's where I am now
          >
          > opps gotta go pack
          >
          > jody
          >
        • rie_anke
          I remember Kailash saying something like starting a new life and using the next month to reorientate ourselves and taking some time of from manifestation
          Message 4 of 5 , Nov 2, 2007
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            I remember Kailash saying something like "starting a new life"
            and "using the next month to reorientate ourselves" and taking some
            time of from manifestation using more time for meditation and reading
            and exploring Sri Chinmoy`s heritage (his thousands of songs, birds,
            paintings, books, tapes...) when he talked to us on the Joy Day.

            I would have just liked to go on as usual, making myself forget that
            something important has changed. - Just not to experience the loss.
            On the other hand I feel that the inner reality has NOT changed. But
            anyway it is useful to devote some time to figure out what is
            happening. Loosing Sri Chinmoy on the outer plane is painful - but
            knowing we are not loosing him on the inner plane is very comforting.

            Sitting in front of my shrine I tried to "redirect" myself...
            Striving more for the goal - God realisation? Kailash had mentioned
            that seeing a student realise God is the greatest gift for a
            spiritual master and he mentioned that Vivekananda had realised God
            appr. 20 years after Sri Ramakrishna`s passing. Well I do not know if
            20 years would do for me ;-) Kailash also shared that only after
            being on the path for about 20 years he started to "seriously"
            practise meditation. - Well perhaps I should start after my 17 years
            on the path... To be frank I am feeling like wanting to attend the
            next beginners class for meditation and perhaps I will. I just have
            to get more serious about concentration, silencing the mind and
            really go for "diving deep within".

            And - sitting in front of my shrine - "redirecting" I was trying to
            put some new goals in front of me. I mean, God realization seems so
            far that I cannot even say what it is, so perhaps some smaller goals
            would help me keep going. I remember some of the stories about other
            masters that I always enjoyed reading, some came from Sri Chinmoy`s
            books, some dated back to the time when I was a little child and my
            father would read from a children's bible to me. That was my delight.
            Some masters would visit their faithful disciples in a subtle form or
            even appear in some gross physical form (I think Babaji did that for
            Lahiri) to them when they needed them or invoked them. - Nothing is
            impossible! So to keep me going I have set the goal to become so
            advanced in my meditation that I will be able to invoke my beloved
            master. I am dreaming of becoming so advanced that I will be able to
            see his eyes the way I saw them when he offered me prasad from his
            hands. I am dreaming that I will one day be able to meet my Lord
            again in "real" and place myself at his feet or become one with him.
            It may take me hundreds, thousands of years but I will
            keep going. (Well I hope it could happen earlier - but I am prepared
            to wait.) And I know, it will not remain a dream not for me and not
            for you who are reading this - if you try! We will see Guru again, we
            will meet with Guru again but now it requires self-mastery, it
            requires "real" meditation...

            But - to come back to earth and reality I also feel that my
            meditation can only maturate when I go step by step: doing regular
            meditation practise and prayers - inspiring myself reading spiritual
            books (and the inspiration group posts :-), doing sports to keep the
            body receptive, work and meet with my spiritual sisters and brothers.
            It all goes step by step - but my inner longing to meet Guru again
            will keep me going. I hope the Supreme will grant me this experience
            one day.

            In Guru`s immortal presence
            Subarnamala
          • suchana27
            Dear Subarnamala, Your last posting reminds me that Guru used to say that in God´s dictionary the word ímpossible´ does not exist. His is a nice mantra we
            Message 5 of 5 , Nov 4, 2007
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              Dear Subarnamala,

              Your last posting reminds me that Guru used to say that in God´s
              dictionary the word ímpossible´ does not exist. His is a nice mantra
              we could put into practice to keep on going.

              Thank you for your heartfelt words.

              In oneness-heart,
              Suchana
              PS: Subarnamala, are you the same person who phoned me from Zurich
              some years ago? It was so nice to speak a little bit about ´natural
              and nutritional food´!

              --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, rie_anke
              <no_reply@...> wrote:
              >
              > I remember Kailash saying something like "starting a new life"
              > and "using the next month to reorientate ourselves" and taking some
              > time of from manifestation using more time for meditation and
              reading
              > and exploring Sri Chinmoy`s heritage (his thousands of songs, birds,
              > paintings, books, tapes...) when he talked to us on the Joy Day.
              >
              > I would have just liked to go on as usual, making myself forget that
              > something important has changed. - Just not to experience the loss.
              > On the other hand I feel that the inner reality has NOT changed. But
              > anyway it is useful to devote some time to figure out what is
              > happening. Loosing Sri Chinmoy on the outer plane is painful - but
              > knowing we are not loosing him on the inner plane is very
              comforting.
              >
              > Sitting in front of my shrine I tried to "redirect" myself...
              > Striving more for the goal - God realisation? Kailash had mentioned
              > that seeing a student realise God is the greatest gift for a
              > spiritual master and he mentioned that Vivekananda had realised God
              > appr. 20 years after Sri Ramakrishna`s passing. Well I do not know
              if
              > 20 years would do for me ;-) Kailash also shared that only after
              > being on the path for about 20 years he started to "seriously"
              > practise meditation. - Well perhaps I should start after my 17 years
              > on the path... To be frank I am feeling like wanting to attend the
              > next beginners class for meditation and perhaps I will. I just have
              > to get more serious about concentration, silencing the mind and
              > really go for "diving deep within".
              >
              > And - sitting in front of my shrine - "redirecting" I was trying to
              > put some new goals in front of me. I mean, God realization seems so
              > far that I cannot even say what it is, so perhaps some smaller goals
              > would help me keep going. I remember some of the stories about other
              > masters that I always enjoyed reading, some came from Sri Chinmoy`s
              > books, some dated back to the time when I was a little child and my
              > father would read from a children's bible to me. That was my
              delight.
              > Some masters would visit their faithful disciples in a subtle form
              or
              > even appear in some gross physical form (I think Babaji did that for
              > Lahiri) to them when they needed them or invoked them. - Nothing is
              > impossible! So to keep me going I have set the goal to become so
              > advanced in my meditation that I will be able to invoke my beloved
              > master. I am dreaming of becoming so advanced that I will be able to
              > see his eyes the way I saw them when he offered me prasad from his
              > hands. I am dreaming that I will one day be able to meet my Lord
              > again in "real" and place myself at his feet or become one with him.
              > It may take me hundreds, thousands of years but I will
              > keep going. (Well I hope it could happen earlier - but I am prepared
              > to wait.) And I know, it will not remain a dream not for me and not
              > for you who are reading this - if you try! We will see Guru again,
              we
              > will meet with Guru again but now it requires self-mastery, it
              > requires "real" meditation...
              >
              > But - to come back to earth and reality I also feel that my
              > meditation can only maturate when I go step by step: doing regular
              > meditation practise and prayers - inspiring myself reading spiritual
              > books (and the inspiration group posts :-), doing sports to keep the
              > body receptive, work and meet with my spiritual sisters and
              brothers.
              > It all goes step by step - but my inner longing to meet Guru again
              > will keep me going. I hope the Supreme will grant me this experience
              > one day.
              >
              > In Guru`s immortal presence
              > Subarnamala
              >
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